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tv   NOW With Alex Wagner  MSNBC  February 7, 2014 1:00pm-2:01pm PST

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>> the u.s. state department called the eavesdropping a new low. >> we have seen some protests over russia's anti-gay laws. >> making it a crime distribute so-called gay propaganda. >> the american withdrawal from the games will not be taken lightly here. yet another blow to east-west relations. >> president obama and putin have not had a good relationship. >> in just a few hours, american
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television sets will be tuned into the opening ceremony of the xxviii winter olympic games. conditions in sochi are not quite up to snuff. construction was ongoing just hours before the games were due to start and journalists have documented everything from hotel room horrors to water that's not ready for consumption. just hours ago, the biggest mishap to date as one of the olympic rings failed to open during the opening ceremony. all these flubs and bungles have sparked a sochi problems twitter handle which has more followers than the official sochi olympics account. they accused journalists have
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committi committing, quote sabotage. surveillance video in hotel showers? his claim was later denied. while the pics of weirdly colored water and police officers are great fodder for the internet, there is more compelling evidence of just how spoiled vladimir putin's russia is. putin's games have them all. the government's hostility to the gay community has been well documented. more protesters were arrested in st. petersburg. this is routine stuff in a country where political rivals
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and powerful businessmen have been jailed. this man, putin jailed for ten years on tax evasion before pardoning him late last year. those who seek to report on these crackdowns have been silenced. 313 journalists in russia died or disappeared between the years 1993 and 2009. criticism from the west is unlikely to change anything in russia as the new york's david rem nick explains putin is not interested in the contemporary requirements of human rights or seating true independents to the courts. democracy is not in his interest. stability and development, those are his themes first and last. joining me now is the "new york times" white house correspondent, peter baker. it's always great to see you.
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i do think we have a sort of media fail here in terms of documenting the true abuses inside russia, which have little to do with shower stalls and restroom signs. i want to talk to you how closely associated these olympics games are with putin. as such, putin is both, i think, going to be championed in some circles for having gotten them off the ground, but they're also seen as a $50 billion liability for the man. >> nobody is more associated with these olympics than vladimir putin. he went to gaut mat la rallying the olympic committee. he convinced them that russia
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was a place ready to hold the international games. he spent the last six years, seven years trying to prove it. now it all comes to pass. will these initial stories about bathrooms and hotel rooms obscure what he hopes to be a modern triumph as a singular force on the national stage? does it stand for things that the international community stands for? >> i wondered what your interpretation of putin's crack down on the lgbt community is.
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his turn was seen as political tactic to isolate critics in russia's urban middle class who protest protested him in 2012. the targeting of gays and lesbians is not something we're unfamiliar with in the united states. do you think it's political strategy, or do you think there is part of vladimir putin who believes in this traditional values way of politicking and this is just a return to that? >> i think we tend to look at russia too often through our own lens. we think they look at the world the way we do. therefore, when something like this happens, it must be a calculated political push. the calculation is it's a society is not open to its gay
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members the way western europe and the united states have become over the last ten years. when we lived in russia, people did not talk about being gay. everyo roughly 70% of russians agree with vladimir's position on gay rights. he's not cracking down on a community who had it pretty good up until then. it's always been a sheltered society that didn't believe in openness when it came to that kind of thing. >> so where do you grade him on the issue of transparency in and around journalism and would-be contenders in politics and business? does it feel like that russia is on a downward trajectory for human rights?
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>> this is not your father's soviet union. you can walk down the streets and make jokes about the leaders. you can say anything you want to your friends and not worry they're going to rat you out to your secret police. where you get in trouble in russia is when you try to have influence, where you appear to be a threat in some way to the kremlin or existing order. that includes journalists or activists or business leaders who might have enough financial backing. they're going to find themselves in a lot of trouble. sometimes in jail. sometimes pushed out of the country or audited through taxes or otherwise harassed. it's not a free society in the way we think of in the west, but it is also not like the soviet
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times. >> how much do you think putin and his government actually care about western opinion? to some degree the fact that they're not going to be a lot of world leaders in attendance at the opening ceremonies, it's china and the ukraine that will be in attendance and not the president of the united states. putin doesn't care much about the west and democracy is not something he's not particularly concerned about. it's much more about stability. do you think that's true? do you think this is "dirt off his shoulders"? >> he does not aspire to democracy as the west defines it. the word has been cheapened and devalued. the notion of democracy is
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sullied. he's very successfully capitalized on that to establish a more central control over the kremlin. does he care about the west and their views of him in that sense? no. i think he does care about having stature and respect on the international stage. i think it is a blow to him not to have president obama or some other international leaders there. he does care about this idea that russia should be respected as a great power. >> in terms of the relations between the u.s. and russia, where would you grade them right now? we've had various warm and cool trends. we have information that russians may have leaked a phone call. >> the tapping of a phone call and the posting of it on an
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reflects the relations of today. it's otherwise about as low as it gets. president obama cancelled a trip to moscow where he was going to have a one on one meeting with vladimir putin. there's nothing they can agree on. since then, putin became -- they don't see it the way we do. we don't see it the way they do. we have a hard time meeting in the middle. coming up, senator elizabeth warren calls for a new crackdown on financial institutions pointing to the ceo of jpmorgan.
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we'll discuss paydays. that's just ahead. first, a new $1.4 million conservative push to oust kay haighen and balance of power in washington. anybody have occasional constipation, diarrhea, gas, bloating? one phillips' colon health probiotic cap each day helps defend against these digestive issues with three types of good bacteria. i should probably take this. live the regular life. phillips'.
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$1.4 million, that's how much the conservative group americans for prosperity has poured into television ads in one senate race this week. all that right wing money was spent in the hopes of linking kay hagan to the nation's health care law. in another ad this week, the senators likely opponent doubled down on the republican
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distortion. >> how many workers will have to lose their jobs? how many people will have to pay for kay hagan's loyalty to obama? >> the figure to pay attention to here is the 2 million jobs that will supposedly be lost due to obamacare. here's what the head of the congressional budget office said about those so-called lost jobs. >> the reason we don't use the term lost jobs is because there's a critical difference between people who would like to work and can't find a job and people who choose not to work. >> what he and the conservative machinery behind him want voters to think losing your job is the same thing as retiring, because
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you want to. the problem with millions of dollars is they can be effective in drowning out nuance and the truth. they should prepare themselves for a lot more doomsday obamacare ads. according to the university of virginia's center for politics, three seats currently held are likely to control the u.s. senate. republicans have a 54% chance of taking back the upper chamber. joining me now is the democratic senator from north carolina, kay hagan. >> pleasure to be here. >> it has been years that we have seen republicans and conservatives using the affordable care act as a kuj l to beat down those in business. as someone who has a battle
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ahead of her, why are democrats not more -- why is there offense not better? they voted to deny 3,000 low income missourians access to medicaid. this is something that should be widely discussed in and around any state. why is this not -- where is the democratic game on the aca? >> we talk about it all the time, but we've got to be able to raise that money and do those ads so we can continue to discuss this. i tell you, people in north carolina, when they hear this, that our general assembly and our governor has denied medicaid expansion to 500,000 people in north carolina, that's just
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wrong. people are going to lose their lives. we've had one rural hospital close. our hospitals are going to lose out on the medicaid reimbur reimburseme reimbursement. i cannot understand why this current legislature and governor will not listen to the people and take access to that federal money. they've also cut off unemployment insurance compensation. we were the only state in the nation that denied our unemployed workers what 49 other states were able to have access to from the federal government. it is wrong. and i think people at the ballot box next november have going to stand up and let that be heard. >> i find it puzzling that the americans for prosperity is making it an issue, the expansion of medicaid in louisiana, and they think it is a boon to conservatives. given the fact that republicans offer nothing as a substitute
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for their repeal of obamacare or the fact that they're denying hundreds of thousands of millions of people across the country access to basic health care. i wonder if you think there is a chance that this backfires. not the democratic strategy, but the americans for prosperity and these outside groups that are pouring money into states to litigate these issues. >> actually, you mentioned the americans for prosperities, 8.4 million ads have been run in north carolina. these are out of state individuals who want to buy access so they can control the person in this seat. they're not going to control me to work on their fringe agenda.
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the question is what is that agenda. that agenda is cutting taxes on the wealthy, which is what took place in north carolina, and increasing taxes on middle class families. slashing education by a half a billion dollars, freezing teacher pay, cutting off unemployment insurance. that's not what the people of north carolina expect and they're not going to be fooled by this outside special interest money that's really looking at this fringe agenda. >> senator hagan, we know for red state democrats it's often a careful line one must tread, but given the democratic unity in regards to income inequality, i was surprised at senator mark pryor's statement yesterday regarding raising the minimum wage. he said, i know that $10.10
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still isn't a whole lot of money, but i think it is too much too fast. i'm not supportive of that. 73% of the folks in arkansas support raising the minimum wage as of august. what was your reaction to that statement? >> i look at people in north carolina and many of these people are working two jobs, three jobs. they are working harder and harder and unable to stay ahead. this is a puzzle that's got lots of different pieces. we need to increase the minimum wage, but we've also got to be sure that our schools are working for our students, that our health care is affordable and available, and be sure our small businesses have the tools they need so they can grow and hire more people, and we need to be sure our job training programs are as effective as possible. that's what the people of north carolina looking for. the people who are unemployed
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are certainly out there looking for employment and are wanting to be retrained for these 21st century jobs. that's the part of the puzzle that needs to be put together. >> do you think senator pryor's statements do anything to undermine the democratic unity in terms of pushing the minimum wage? >> i'm going to let mark pryor be more familiar with arkansas. i think people understand that $7.25 is not a wage you can raise a family on or get by on in this country today. i look at it as the equivalent of two lattes at a starbucks. that's unacceptable. >> senator, we had senator mansion on the show yesterday. we spent a lot of time talking about the chemical spill in west virginia and the inexcusable oversight that took place there. i want to ask you about the 52
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to 82,000 tons of snow ash slurry that flowed into the river. are you supportive of greater regulation over some of these fossil fuel industries? >> first of all, this spill in north carolina, it has to have the attention immediately. we have to be sure that that leak is fixed, that the pipe is sealed, and we can start that cleanup asap. we need to be sure that this doesn't happen at any of the others. our water quality agency when the environmental agency in north carolina has seen a dramatic cut. in march of this year, there'll be 23% fewer employees just in the water quality area than
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there was three years ago. we've got to be sure that not only do we have the regulations, but the people on board who can monitor this. i'm looking at this closely and looking at what the federal regulators and monitors are doing at the dan river as we speak. >> thank you so much for your time. >> thank you, alex. coming up, republicans yet again make the complicated sound sinister when it comes to the affordable care act. we'll sift through the myths and legends. first, bill de blasio responded today to joe biden's quip that laguardia airport feels that it is in some third-world country. the details of that next. if i can impart one lesson to a
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comments were inappropriate. as a proud new yorker, i didn't like that comment and i think it was not the right way to talk about it. >> translation, don't talk smack about bill de blasio's turf. he was not amused by biden's comparison to laguardia airport as to something you'd find in a third-world country. >> there may be reasons i don't run, but there's no obvious reason for me why i think i should not run. >> do not think hillary clinton will keep joe biden in the corner. he expects to make his decision by the summer of 2014. we'll separate fact from fiction next on "now."
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because winter needs a hero. ♪ this week brought a fresh storm to the polarized vortex that's the politics of the affordable care act. the cbo projected that the health care law will reduce the ranks of the uninsured by 13 million this year. it lowerwill cut the government long-term deficits by about a trillion dollars over the next decade. cut the deficits. once again, deficit cutting. not bad. not bad.
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but of course, that wasn't what got republicans attention. >> what is particularly troubling is cbo's projection of the labor force participation. >> the law is going to drive 2.5 million full-time workers out of the economy. just like that, gone. >> washington is making this problem worse. >> and the white house, their response was, well -- they made a joke out of it. >> right back at you speaker boehner. joining me now is one of the architects of the affordable care act and editor and chief of project "x." >> i'm just
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doug came out and said at one point during that hearing, people don't feel bad about this. they feel good about it. we say congratulations. this is about mobility for the american worker. in fact, we pulled up some tape earlier this week. this was a republican priority five years ago, making sure health insurance reform allowed americans to have mobility. >> economists talk about job lock, when you're in a job for particular reasons and can't leave. one of the biggest job locks is health insurance. you're older. you couldn't get private insurance on your own. so you're locked into that job. turns out that was a major
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consideration for about three quarters of people over 55 years of age. now we give them a way to get their own insurance, they're no longer forced to keep a job they don't want. that's something economists praise. republicans praise it. it's a way to make the labor market more fluid. people will start companies on their own. we're not losing jobs. the difference between labor supply, that's the people, and the jobs, that's the demand. >> the demand could increase, which would have a residual effect in terms of increasing wages. >> there will be tens of thousands of people because of the law. you'll get more employment. >> there were a lot of things
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republicans were for in health care reform. now there's talk about risk corridors. you're the only person with whom i can sort of get excited about risk corridors. we have talked about this before ezra. these days this week paul ryan called it an massive insurance company bailout. these things seem to be critical to the success of insurance and insurance reform and they were something that republicans supported not by a few years ago. >> and still support. we have the medicare drug benefit. the way that benefit deals with the problem ensures -- if you're
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uninsured and you've got all the healthy people, you're going to pay into the pool. if you've got all the sick people, you're going to get a payout from that pool. it's a way to adjust for help. this is something that republicans put into the medicare prescription drug benefit. they say it is a good idea, but they don't want it in obamacare because they say it is a bailout. the cbo says it's going to mean $8 billion extra. republicans don't want risk corridors here because they want
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to law to fail. >> i think it's dastardly of cherry picking the information and fear monger. i want to get your thoughts as someone who helped write this law about the governors and the state legislatures who are choosing not to expand medicaid coverage to the poor. the white house expected that most governors would take this money because the government is going to do this expansion. does it surprise you that they're willing to play politics and throw caution to the wind? >> it's such a sweet deal for them. every state that opts in actually makes money on this arrangement because they get more -- they get 100% of the medicaid payments and they're no longer paying the payment in the
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state workers that go to cover the uninsured. a lot of their programs that cover the uninsured go away. every state makes a lot of money. we never expected them to balk. after we get past the next election, more states will come on. when you deny people health insurance, is it good or bad for them? there are a lot of studies showing when you have high levels of uninsured people they get worse care. uninsured people who have accidents actually don't get as good care once they get to the hospital and stuff. by not providing this medicaid benefit to people, you are consigning them to worse care, that could mean the difference between life and death. >> playing politics with people's lives.
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the white house has announced several fixes to this loss, which is to allow people to be on noncompliant plans for another three years. i wonder what you make of this. this is a highly contentious matter. a lot of people think the white house is caving. what do you make of this suggestion? >> this is a rumor. the white house haven't denied it either. this would be them mucking things up a little bit. i want to hear the specifics a little bit more. if you allow noncompliant plans out there for three years, it becomes hard to take them down. there are a lot of parts of obamacare that are going to be tough for democrats in 2014.
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if they don't stand strong, the law won't be as successful. >> we recognize that this was going to be a problem. part of the issue was to take the band aid off at once and adjust over a few years. that's what you have to do. trying to do patches is going to undermine various parts of the bill. it's not a very optimal way of going forward. >> that sounds like the verbal thumbs down. we have to leave it there. thank you both for your time. coming up, the good guys won this week when delivery workers at a new york city dominos received a $1.3 million settlement from the pizza chain.
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we will talk with one of the plaintiffs in that case just ahead. so you're telling me your mom has a mom cave? hi boys! i've made you campbell's chunky new england clam chowder. wow! this is incredible! i know. and now it has more clams! [ male announcer ] campbell's chunky soup. what? [ male announcer ] it fills you up right.
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saying "what about breakfast?" together we've created the family breakfast project to help families begin their day together over breakfast. jamie diamond raked in more than $9,000 an hour last year. the jpmorgan chase ceo made a lot. >> here's look at how stocks look going into the monday morning session. the dow jones industrial average up 150 points. nasdaq up almost 69. that's it from cnbc. first in business worldwide. ane. yep, and you can customize it.
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in 2013, jpmorgan chase had a pretty embarrassing year. over the course of 12 months, the bank paid $20 billion in fines in criminal and regulatory settlements, including $13 billion in fraudulent mortgage securities, $2.6 billion for failing to report bernie madoff's ponzi scheme. a banner year, right? it seems jpmorgan thought so. two weeks ago, the bank approved a 74% pay raise for the man who oversaw all this illegal activity, the ceo.
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his annual salary is now $20 million. the audacity of this decision has pushed the financial times and forbes to call it undeserved. >> you might think presiding over activities that resulted in $17 billion in payouts for illegal conduct would hurt your case for a fat pay bump, but according to "the new york times," members of the jpmorgan board of directors thought jamie diamond earned the raise. is it so bad that we're making it more likely for big banks to break the law? >> jamie diamond got a $9 million raise for presiding over
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an institution that was breaking the law. 90% of americans haven't had a raise for over 30 years and he'll have an annual salary of $20 million when half the jobs in this country pay less than $33,000 a year. when minimum wage workers ever so slightly above the federal poverty level can't get a raise from congress. his company incurred enough fines last year to pay for the educational budget in new york city. nowhe in new york city, low wage workers are sometimes not even paid for their work at all. after years of working at dominos and getting paid for only a fraction of the hours put
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in, two plaintiffs had had enough. they sued a domino's pizza franchise in new york and they won. i'll talk with one of those workers involved in that very settlement live in the studio. that's coming up next. try bayer back and body. it's bayer aspirin plus a special pain relief booster, to relieve sore backs and soothe aching muscles fast. get moving again, with bayer back and body. thank you. thank you. i got this. oh, no, i'll get it! let me get it. uh-uh-uh. i don't want you to pay for this. it's not happening, honey. let her get it. she got her safe driving bonus check from allstate last week. and it's her treat. what about a tip? oh, here's one... get an allstate agent. nice! [ female announcer ] switch today and get two safe driving bonus checks a year for driving safely. only from allstate. call 866-905-6500 now. here we go! hold on man. is that a leak up there?
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♪ told ya you could do it. (dad vo) i want her to be safe. so, i taught her what i could and got her a subaru. (girl) piece of cake. ♪ (announcer) love. it's what makes a subaru, a subaru. last week dozens of delivery workers in new york city got $1.3 million from domino's pizza. joining me now is one of the ten initial plaintiffs in the lawsuit and the staff attorney general. carlos, congratulations on an important win. tell everybody that's watching this show what was domino's doing wrong. >> the dominos, they don't pay
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the minimum wage. they pay only $4.40 by hour. i used to work 66 hours a week. they paid me between 40 and 45 hours a week. so they forced me to -- besides this, i work no matter what the weather conditions or we clean the restaurant, we're cutting pizza, we move the merchandise from the corporation. we're very glad to got this victory by organizing. when my coworkers from different backgrounds and pastors and students, residents -- that's why we got this victory. >> the numbers here are staggering.
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84% of fast food workers in new york report being victims of wage theft. tell us how you won this case and what the hurdles were. >> it is a settlement, alex. the case began when carlos and some other workers went to the national mobilization against sweat shops. they brought us the case when it was time to take legal action. carlos was one of the original plaintiffs. it was filed with ten workers. we gave notice to the class. more workers joined and ultimately 61 workers will be getting compensation in the settlement. >> carlos, one of the things i think people don't understand is you're working at a wage not just for yourself. you have two children and a wife in mexico. you live in new york city. how do you survive on $4 or $5 an hour? >> new york is very expensive.
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we have to eat. we have to pay the transportation. >> did you have roommates? >> yeah, we live with two or three people in the same room. the minimum wage is not enough. they don't pay me minimum wage. how can we survive like that? that's why i decide with my coworkers to organize. >> one quick question. >> yes. >> when you first brought this up to the managers, what did they say? did they think they could keep you quiet? >> when i complained about the bad treatment or conditions, he said he would fire me. the door is open. >> it's a major victory in terms of moving the ball forward on this issue. all this work you have done is commendable. thank you for sharing your
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story. that is all for now. i'll see you back here on monday at 4:00 p.m. eastern. "the ed show" is coming up next. good evening, americans, and welcome to "the ed show" live from detroit lakes, minnesota, let's get to work. >> women deserve equal pay for equal work. >> american women are raised so they can raise their families. >> this nation cannot afford to continue treating women unfairly. >> but they still make 77 cents for every dollar a man earns. and in 2014, it's an embarrassment. >> there are many things that this congress can do to ensure that women succeed. >> make sure women have equal


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