tv MSNBC Live MSNBC April 22, 2017 12:00pm-1:01pm PDT
i'm yasmin vossoughian. tens of thousands of people across the cities marking earth day. their concerns include lawmakers who deny evidence-based research when making policy decisions. scientists and advocates also voicing their anger. all of this happening across the country including new york city where morgan radford is live and ali vitali is washington, d.c., where things are just getting started. >> reporter: we're out here in the rain and scientists and researchers alike, you can hear the crowd around me amping up on their walk over. as we've talked about today, this is one of hundreds of marches internationally on this earth day and here specifically in d.c., there's a political aspect of this. there are a lot of people out here saying that the trump administration steps they've
taken from a budget perspective and in the way that they've taken an attitude towards climate change are things that they are out here protesting. this is just part of the resist movement. that being said, of course, there's not much change that would be impacted and negative view from the perspective of protesters from several years now. a lot of his supporters really supported it. definitely a lot of negative feelings towards trump out here. but really also a lot of demonstration against science and the need for indication and are they staying away from their political leanings? >> reporter: you're seeing both
kays ways of thinking. i've seen nerdy sentiments on signs today and anti-trump chants i've heard gl by and they were talking about trump and how it happens to be science-based and fact-based policy coming out of our government. so you really have a political and apolitical happening on the ground. >> ali vitali,hank yo get out of that rain, will you? morgan radford has been in new york city all day. what is happening now. >> reporter: we've been on all day following the march. the rain has not stopped anyone. many marchers said this wasn't a political issue but about funding and research and the sciences. some of us reminded that if there wasn't funding for the
science, we wouldn't have the internet. a lot of people are coming out for different reasons. john, we were speaking earlier about why you thought marching was the way to get your voice heard. >> right now when you call congress, you can't even get through. >> reporter: what are you wanting to say? >> to not defund epa and sciences. it doesn't make the country stronger. >> reporter: reminding myself that there are many other people who feel as strongly about the issues as i do in a time that can be very depressing politically. it's very disheartening. >> reporter: do you think this is a partisan issue? >> well, i think science per se should never be partisan. but the way the administration
has been moving forward, they have turned it into a political concern because science is being taken off the table. >> reporter: and you see people nodding their heads behind you in agreement. we've seen defunding since the 1960s and when they saw president trump's proposed budget plan, they say they saw slashes for things like the epa and the cdc. that's what scares them. a graduate student said this is also about immigration because those immigrant doctors contributing to medical care and research, he said it's invaluable. so for a lot of people, this form of protests and marching is their way to stand up for america. yasmin? >> thank you so much for talking to us into president trump spending the weekend in washington. he issued a statement on earth day a short time ago but has yet to comment specifically on those marches that we were just
covering. the first lady by his side. kelly o'donnell is at his side. why did the president decide today to visit walter reed? >> reporter: there's no specific answer for that about today. it's a tradition for presidents as commander in chief to go visit injured personnel and walter reed is the national military hospital not far from the white house here and the president wanted to bestow the purple heart on this sergeant who was injured in afghanistan. so that is obviously a solemn moment and a very important honor, one that is involving great sacrifice. so the president and first lady did that publicly. away from the cameras, others were hospitalized there and recovering from their service-related injuries. so it is tradition. today there was an opportunity to do it and in this case there
was the awa othe purple heart that he wanted to make personnel. so there's that. this is d.c. week for the president. there are a lot of senior staff members here at work today going into the final week before the 100-day mark. it's an arbitrary sort of dot on the calendar where over time there have been assessments made on presidencies, how well is a new president doing on his agenda and for the trump team, they have done a number of things using executive orders but they have not have a big victory yet so they are concerned about moving things forward on health care, on tax reform and on keeping the government funded. all of that is a very tall order. keeping the government funded is a must do this week. the others will take more time. >> kelly, i've been talking to you every weekend from here on out. you've been in florida. i'm sorry you have to withstand the rain back in washington,
d.c., but thanks for joining us. >> reporter: my own bed is the good part of that. >> that's true. happening now in las vegas, bernie sanders is speaking alongside tom perez. this wraps up the week-long series traveling to red and purple states across the country to unify the democratic base. but the reception is not always harmonious. alex seitz-wald is live at the event and joining me now. alex, the big question is, is it working? is it unifyg the democratic party, this rally? >> reporter: i think it's definitely a work in progress. and if it can be solved in a week, they probably wouldn't need this tour. but i think the dnc and tom perez are trying to get in front of these people, these bernie sanders fans, and they really do feel like bernie sanders rallies. reach out to them and say we hear you, let them vent a little bit and build trust that is going to be ultimately a long
process. but aides to both have pointed out that there are other benefits here. they've had a personal relationship on this tour and they are looking forward to doing more activities together and when you think about two years ago, bernie sanders and the dnc were in a are wwar, thi definitely progress. >> alex, i've got to say, in talking to democrats about the rally and unification, a lot of people are saying maybe bernie sanders isn't necessarily the guy. he sort of represents the past. we need fresh blood. the democratic party needs to come bu combust in order to rebuild. >> reporter: you hear a huge range from attendees. bernie sanders is the real draw
here. i've also heard a lot of people say that they think bernie sanders supporters need to give tom perez a chance and need to get involved and be involved themselves that said, democratic party has stuck with bernie sanders whether they like him or not. he's one of the most popular politicians in the country. he won a huge portion of the democratic primary. they are going to have to work together one way or the other. >> and bernie sanders is still registered as an inpeent. >> reporter: exactly. he reiterated that this week which csed concern as did his decision to say that jon ossoff is a progressive and campaigned for a mayoral candidate in omaha. even some bernie sanders supporters said they would like to see him as a democrat.
and tom perez democrats and we'll see if they can pull it off. >> that's a good point. alex seitz-wald, thank you. we'll be watching. will the president's health care plan be met with open arms on both sides of the aisle? and the nation's health care system after a stinging defeat just weeks ago. that's coming up. no matter how dusty the room or how high the pollen count, flonase allergy relief keeps your eyes and nose clear. flonase helps block 6 key inflammatory substances that cause nasal congestion and itchy, watery eyes.
for relief beyond the nose. flonase. for relief beyond the nose. heavily into basketball. 21-year-old female. wait. data just changed... now she's into disc sports. ah, no she's not. since when? since now. she's into tai chi. she found disc sports too stressful. hold on. let me ask you this... what's she gonna like six months from now? who do we have on aerial karate? steve. steve. steve. and alexis. uh, no. just steve. just steve. just steve. live business, powered by sap. when you run live, you run simple. i'm raph. my name is anne. i'm one of the real live attorneys you can talk to through legalzoom. don't let unanswered legal questions hold you up, because we're here, we're here, and we've got your back. legalzoom. legal help is here. thithis is the new new york.e? think again. we are building new airports all across the state.
a ridiculous standard. that's what president trump has called the 100-day deadline he faces in just seven days. while he may be trying to brush it off, we're seeing a last-minute push trying to get legislative wins on the board. joining me is emily and shawn. thank you both for joining me on this saturday. i want to start with yo
is this adminiration looking to pass smart legislation or is this abouting off the box in the first 100 days? >> i think there's concerns about the optics here. the big task at hand is to keep the government open and there's a lot of people in washington worried about suddenly adding more to the to do list when the government could shut down on friday. >> shawn, how much pressure is the administration under right now? >> they are under pressure to show that they can actually accomplish something. if you look back when republicans controlled all of congress, what do they have to show for it? they have a supreme court nominee confirmed that they wanted but they had to change the rules of the senate to do that. they failed to pass a health care bill. there's not a lot of clarity on tax reform. so i think they are under pressure to show that they have
complete control of the government right now. >> let's talk about tax reform, emily. some people were caught off guard when the president teased his tax announcement for next week. "his announcement surprised capitol hill and left trump's own treasury officials speechless." so if their not on the same page, what kind of plan can there actually be? >> well, i think what we'll see from the white house is going to be pretty broad andneral. he keeps it extremely broad and i know there are leaders working very hard on a tax reform proposal but the details have yet to come out and with this uncertainty about whether they want to move forward with health care, that's put some level of murkiness to the tax reform piece and there's a lot of moving parts here. i don't think we'll see anything
too specific. >> i want to get to health care because that's huge. is this painting a picture of tax reform and saying, look, we're getting to it but we're not going to get something passed before the 100 days. >> i think that's part of it. i think they realize that this is a really big and difficult task ahead of them. a lot of the republicans that i spoke to on capitol hill say, look, if you thought there was disagreement on health care and discord, wait until tax reform comes. there's going to be a lot when it comes to specific level tax cuts. the border adjustment idea that house gop leaders have put foth. there's complicated matters that need to get sorted out. there's an element here of the president saying, i'm going to take a step toward doing this. this is something we've said from day one that we'll pursue but make no mistake about it, this is going to be a very, very difficult challenge for this congress and this president to get done soon.
>> theare going to benefit the corporate culture instead. >> they are already bringing up the fact that the president hasn't released his own tax forms. >> there you go. >> so will this plan benefit him? will it benefit his business interests? look for democrats to really, really push that home. that's something we're hearing a lot more of at town halls around the country that i've been at. people are concerned and want to know why the president has released this and bad timing for him. >> health care compromise and the amendment, covering people up to the age of 26 guaranteed
renew built of coverage and community -- i'm going through some of the bullet points. those are based on age, gender and health. but we still haven't seen any sort of legislative text here. how realistic is it that the trump administration can get this done in literally seven days? >> i think it's fairly unrealistic. i think that, as you said, we haven't seen a legislative text and a lot of republicans on the hill will want to see that before they even take the position. they've been on recess and off in their districts for the last two weeks. i don't see how they can gauge whether they have the support and republican leaders certainly don't want another instance like they had in march where they had to pull the vote at the last minute. that was extremely embarrassing. they are a little gun-shy right now. i don't see them bringing it to the floor. >> we'll all be watching the
next seven days in the lead-u to that 100-day mark. thank you both. >> thank you. >> catch "meet the press" tomorrow. exclusive interviews with nancy pelosi and white house chief of staff reince priebus. also on the show, senator marco rubio. if it's sunday, everybody, it's "meet the press" on nbc. coming up, mike presence in australia saying all options are on the table with regard to north korea. and can the u.s. use lessons learned from iran when dealing with north korea? liberty mutual stood with me
when this guy got a flat tire in the middle of the night. hold on dad... liberty did what? yeah, liberty mutual 24-hour roadside assistance helped him to fix his flat so he could get home safely. my dad says our insurance doesn't have that. don't worry - i know what a lug wrench is, dad. is this a lug wrench? maybe? you can leave worry behind when liberty stands with you™. liberty stands with you™. liberty mutual insurance. la quinta presents"how to w" step one: point decisively with the arm of your glasses. abracadabra. the stage is yours. step two: choose la quinta. the only hotel where you can redeem loyalty points for a free night-instantly and win at business.
hello again, everyone. i'm yasmin vossoughian here in new york. this earth day is kicking off with a worldwide march for science. the main event is happening now in d.c. where thousands of scientists and teachers and activists are marching on the nation's capital. out west, senator bernie sanders and chairman tom perez are holding the last union rally in
las vegas. they spoke in front of large crowds in an attempt to bridge the divide. overseas right now, u.s. defense secretary james mattis in qatar for the first leg of his regional tour that included stops in israel. he will focus on key u.s. alliances with regional allies. turning now to vice president mike pence, australia vowing once again to deal with any threats presented by north korea. he said thatgain during a news conference with the prime minister. i want to turn now to sara james in melbourne for more on the president's visit. hi. >> reporter: hi, yasmin. yes, it was an interesting meeting there, that news conference held. the vice president talked about strengthening the allies. that's what he was discussing in his visit here, the importance of the relationship between the
u.s. and australia. and the reason for this is in part because what is happening in north korea and on the korean peninsula. so that was very much front and center. the vice president made it clear that diplomatic issues are what they really want to look at but, as you mentioned, all options on the table and what both the united states and australia prime minister malcolm turnbull says is that bringing pressure to bear is china. >> the president and i have great confidence that china will properly deal with korea. but as made clear a short days ago, if china is unable to deal with north korea, the united states and our allies will. >> reporter: of course, we know about the meetings that happene in the united states between president trump and the chinese leader but also australia has
been exerting influence here, both economically and diplomatic clee. the australian prime minister reaching out to china in terms of north korea encouraging them to use their leverage against the north koreans. so that's very much front and center here, yasmin. >> sara, we'll talk about china's impact in a few minutes but it seems that australia now actually is in the crosshairs after comments by its foreign minister who said, look, north korea is a threat and we support the u.s. position that all options are on the table. what is north korea saying about all of this and how is australia responding? >> reporter: yes. this is news here this morning. it's about 5:00 in the morning here local time. just a couple of hours ago, the word came through that there are threats of a possible nuclear strike against australia based on comments that the foreign minister julie bishop made. this was in a radio interview
earlier this week. we know that north korea is known for this inflamed rhetoric. but nevertheless, these were strong words and it was because the australian foreign minister had said that australia was really in sync with the united states and also north korea represents a real threat to regional stability here. during this news conference you ard agai and again about osperity and security those two going together. so i think what you'll see is no real change there because the prime minister said in that news conference that australia is in lock step with the united states. there are joint military facilities this country has been in every conflict with the united states since world war i, yasmin. >> and sara, really quickly, talking about the refugee agreement made between australia and the united states, saying that we're not going to abide by it but now vice president
singing a different tune. do you have me, sara? did i lose you? that's live tv, everybody. i lost sara james. we'll try to get her back. i want to join -- i want to bring steve clemens in to talk about this and steven norper to talk all about this. a lot to talk about here, gentlemen. steven, i want to talk with you. we heard pence say we'll deal with north korea with or without china. is that even possible? >> it's not possible. he also said that he believes china is the key to denuclearization. tensions are very high but china needs to be at the table as well. >> they have shown great restraint due to the loss of life that any action would have on south korea specifically.
why? why is that restraint being shown here? >> because i think virtually every scenario which shows if there was a hot conflict with north korea, that would put in harm's way between 250,000 and a million south koreans and that's before you get to japan. so as we've talked a lot about plus sister, not very much planned, i think that particularly when he was in mar-a-lago and japan, it was interesting, that was the first time we were able to see donald trump actually behave in a restrained way and i think it's because his defense advisers are very much aware around him of what the incredible loss of life and the potential costs would be of a hot conflict in the korean peninsula. >> you think back to the clinton era. diplomacy worked.
they stopped their nuclear program for i think nearly a decade or so. >> about eight years. >> how do you make it work again? what does north korea need to hear in order for diplomacy need to work again? >> the united states has provided it before, it's a security guarantee. they want to know they won't be invaded and that regime change is not at the top -- >> not to interrupt you but because i want people t understand this. north korea thinks asg as we have these nuclear weapons, you will not invade us and we will maintain the power structure of this country. kim jong-un will stay in power. >> that's essentially what they think and that's right. they look at what happened to saddam hussein and moammar gadhafi and they say that's the rationale. they look at the missiles on syria and they say that's the rationale for us to continue. >> so how could the u.s. give them that guarantee? >> they need to get to the
negotiating table with north korea. clearly the united states and south korea have stepped up their deterrence along with japan. australia as well. this has been noted. but there needs to be a reduction of tensions. there needs to be a push to get to the table so that the missile and the nuclear issues can be drawn in with the 85th anniversary of the korean people's army this coming tuesday, there's concern about a sixth nuclear test and perhaps a missile launch. >> do you think they will try to do something again on tuesday? >> it's possible. they did show restraint on this 105th anniversary on the birth of kim il-sung. >> they had a failed missile launch. >> but it was a missile launch and not a nuclear test. there's a difference in terms of the level of provocation. >> steve, i want to talk about the iran nuclear deal. we've heard from the state department that they are complying. do you think something like that could work with north korea?
could there be incentive for them to shift their nuclear arsenal out of their country? >> i think that was the original plan that the obama administration had hoped for, is that by going through the exercise, bringing the world together in sanctions unity around the iran deal, basically negotiating through a process that had rewards for good behavior and taking them on, the lesson that they were hoping to teach was to the north koreans. i think in the climate right now with president trump who's so dismissive of not only the iran deal but the other elements around it because we heard rex tillerson say that while the iranians were living up to the deal, it's not achieving its objectives. that's exactly the wrong message to send to north korea. i think everything as steven just laid out was exactly right. the problem with the plus sister that we're hearing from president trump is that there is no place for north korea to back into. there's no negotiation process. there's no iran deal like apparatus for north korea to look at because rex tillerson,
jim mattis and others have said the time for talking with north korea is over. there will be no talking. we're in a ridiculous situation where the strategic side of trying to look at ways to reduce tensions puts the various equities on the table. that process is strangely missing from all of this plus sister. >> it's an interesting point that you bring up and i want to clarify this for myself as well. when we're hearing from the u.s. government like secretary of ate tillerson, look, iran is embodied by the nuclear deal but doesn't mean we're going to keep up on our end of things. >> i think the administration is not looking for quick action and getting engaged in a process like the obama administration did, a grueling 21 months of negotiation with iran. that's a good outcome. that's debatable but that's what i think. they want to see a miracle happen where north korea just
decides, despite gadhafi and other things that they've seen, that they are going to automatically capitulate and give up the one thing that gives them security. if north korea exists in part through extortion, by being bad and behaving badly and by threatening others and trying to get resources into its country so we can pay them off to behave less recklessly. that's north korea's survival strategy. so to undo that and unplug that, we need something that steve laid out that's a lot more sensible to bring the parties to the table where they stand down. the united states has not shown that they are willing to do that. >> it's the dream team. steven and steven. steven squared. we'll be back everybody. thanks. slimy, wet lidocaine competitor patches fall off
and a paraben-free patch that stays in place. pain relief you can wear, that won't go anywhere. get blue-emu's lidocare now. you're going to be hanging out in here. so if you need anything, text me. do you play? ♪ ♪ use the chase mobile app to send money in just a tap, to friends at more banks then ever before. you got next? chase. helping you master what's now and what's next.
>> i heard about this and i wanted to do it myself. so congratulations on behalf of melania and myself and the entire nation. >> certainly a huge accomplishment for that sergeant there. congratulations to him and his family especially after experiencing such a heavy loss for him during war and now receiving this purple heart from the president. i can imagine he's feeling pretty good there today. turning now to other news, america is the sexiest man in
1992 just landed a brand-new job. president trump during his 2016 campaign, why do you ask new england, and brown said, "i always wanted to go to new zealand and just ride 100 miles, hit a pub, drink, eat, sleep, do some exploring and do that f a couple of weeks." well, when he's done having some fun, here's some things you should know about his possible new home in new zealand. locals drive on the left-hand side of the road, rugby is the most popular sport and there are nearly 30 million sheep. of the 188 positions, only 2 have been appointed. five nominations are awaiting confirmation from congress. china, japan, senegal, congo and
fill up a mug, not a landfill. get your ancestrydna kit. spit. mail it in. learn about you and the people and places that led to you. go explore your roots. take a walk through the past. meet new relatives. and see how a place and its people are all a part of you. ancestrydna. save 20% through wednesday at ancestrydna.com so we know how to cover almost alanything.ything, even a coupe soup. [woman] so beautiful. [man] beautiful just like you. [woman] oh, why thank you.
[burke] and we covered it, november sixth, two-thousand-nine. talk to farmers. we know a thing or two because we've seen a thing or two. ♪ we are farmers. bum-pa-dum, bum-bum-bum-bum ♪ not aslimy, wet lidocainelief patches patches, ed equal. like the leading competitor patches fall off when you move and stick your sheets while you sleep. only one brand comes in a comfortable, long lasting, dry patch. introducing blue-emu's lidocare. the only water-free, paraben-free and ultra flexible lidocaine patch to block pain for up to 8 hours. pain relief you can wear, that won't go anywhere. get blue-emu's lidocare now.
welcome back. in his first 93 days in office, president trumpb h has been challenged on the world stage. secretary of state tillerson has stepped out of the shadows. but when it comes to the state department, more than half of the positions are either vacant or temporarily filled. in january, the president, he cleaned house, purging some of the highest ranking diplomats from the previous administration without any replacements. and the buck, it does not stop there. today, more than 50 countries around the world have no permanent u.s. ambassador and most of those spots don't have a nominee ready for the senate to consider. how are these unfilled positions affecting the government's main
diplomatic arm? joining me is christopher hill and jon finer, former chief of staff for secretary of state john kerry. ambassador, i'll start with you. is the lack of staffing hurting us and how? >> there's no question it's hurting us. if you look at our foreign policy, it looks like it's essentially a military policy. we recently had people visiting south korea but we have no ambassador there so the various visitors just saw or commander of u.s. forces there with no correspondenting diplomatic briefing. there's no one in the pipeline for south korea or for japan. these are kind of two allies who are really out there on the -- taking the brunt of this north korea outrage. so i think it's a big problem and i guess what is particularly
worrisome is there doesn't seem to be any sense of urgency and we certainly haven't heard from the secretary of state that he's pretty much home alone. >> jon, do you think they will even fill these positions or will they leave them empty? >> yasmin, this is starting to feel lib deliberate self-inflicted wounds to air brush the department and diplomacy out of the photo in terms of the tools ailable to us in making foreign policy. the positions that you talked about are aood exame, in addition to the ambassador to korea which ambassador hill rightly mentioned. not only a field position but no one named for that position either. this is a big problem. there are or issues as well. the notion that secretary tillerson and i think highly of some of the recent steps he's taken to become more visible,
has basically agreed to and been complicit in a massive potential budget cut to the department's diplomatic efforts, upwards of 30% or more. the notion that they are no longer doing daily briefings to the world and to the country on our foreign policy from the state department, which was a feature of the department's work going back decades, all of this underscores the point that ambassador hill made earlier, that president trump likes to boast about the notion that he gives deference to his military commanders. we have a tradition of civilian leadership and the imbalance is extraordinary at this point. >> john -- sorry, ambassador. we have reporting that an official who helped shape the iran deal has been assigned to iranian affairs and then they were questioning her loyalty to the trump administration. what kind of environment, ambassador, does that create? >> there are political litmus
tests being applied to people and essentially the career services is somehow hostile to this administration. when rex tillerson arrived in early february, there was nobody in that entire hallway who felt any less than wanting to see that secretary of state succeed but the problem has been that he doesn't seem to have have had enough of a mandate and there's a lot of deference to the military. the military needs to be there to support diplomatic and political initiatives and yet it's always the other way around. i think we have a problem and they need to take it up with urgency. >> jon, do you think the administration is being sidelined? >> that's every impression conveyed from the outside. i'm not involved in the conversations internally but if you don't have the personnel in place to do the work, the secretary of state did not do
all of america's diplomacy alone. it's a big world. he can only be in one maplace aa time. there are places like syria and north korea, crises that are really screaming out for diplomatic follow-up, for a strategy to get them addressed and resolved. it's not clear that they are prioritizing that work or even putting in place the people who would be there to conduct it. >> and we were just talking about the fact that north korea needs diplomacy now more than ever, which comes directly from the state department. thank you, ambassador hill and jon finer. all right. he's off the air but is he out of the picture of partisan politics? the impact of bill o'reilly's exit from fox news is next. it's not how fast you mow... ...it's how well you mow fast. woooh! it's not how fast you mow... it's how well you mow fast! it's not how fast you mow... it's how well you mow fast. they're not just words to mow by, they're words to live by. the john deere ztrak z345r
with the accel deep deck to mow faster, better. take a test drive and save up to 250 dollars on select john deere residential ztrak mowers. nitrites or artificial ham has preservatives.tes, now it's good for us all. like those who like. sweet those who prefer heat. sfx - a breath of air and those who just love meat. oscar mayer deli fresh. sweet! your date with destiny has arrived.
by my desk and goes, hey there, hot chocolate and i'm like -- or hey, hot chocolate. he didn't say hey there, hot chocolate. no one was around. he didn't look at me. he said it. >> so that was perquita burgess, one of several women making claims against former fox news host bill o'reilly. he and fox reaching an agreement this week he would not be returning to the network. his departure comes amid growing outrage of reports of $13 million in payouts he and fox made to settle sexual harassment claims. in a statement bill o'reilly denied all claims saying, quote, it is tremendously disheartening we ptays due to completely unfounded claims. fox is looking to move past yet ootd scandal, roger ailes being forced out last year following sexual harassment allegations by host gretchen carlson. that lawsuit settled for $20 million. ailes denied any wrongdoing. for more on this i'm joined by msnbc legal contributor katie fang.
thank you for joining me. >> absolutely. >> so how did the network evaluate the situation deciding to part ways with o'reilly? >> so i guess they made the decision that from a liability standpoint it just made sense to say peace out. at this point you've got five women dating as far back as 2004 to whom $13 million has been paid. and the newly negotiated contract in march of this year which was a four-year extension for bill o'reilly said there's an exit clause provided to fox news and/or its parent company 24th century fox give him should he not behave and allegations of sexual harassment were to rise again. so based upon global perspective, they had internal reviews, they came in and said we're making internal recommendations to you from a legal perspective and it made sense for them to cut ties with bill o'reilly at this point. >> let's talk about this new contract, katie. when he signed this new contract, these allegations were already out in the open.
people already knew about the sexual harassment claims. so, a, why sign the new contract? and, b, was that $25 million clause put in there because they already knew? >> why sign that new contract? well, i don't think it was a cret to anybody that bill o'reilly was the cash cow for fox news. th millions of dollars that came in from advertisers. you know, you couldn't top it. he was the guy for them. however, in the end the ultimate liability exposure proved to be too great. and with the new change in the regime going from roger ailes as you discussed him being ousted already last year and having the murdochs come in, they said, you know what, this corporate culture is not going to be sustained. it's cost them $35 million at a minimum in litigation expenses, not to mention the severance packages, not to mention the settlement packages, you're exceeding $100 million already and you don't even know the amounts because there were nondisclosures and confidentiality settlements going on with other accusers of harassment at fox news. >> so you think this was about money or morality? >> i think in the enld it's a
combination, you would hope -- let me say that clearly, you would hope in the end it was a combination of both. it was a business decision, but it was also to make sure that corporate governance showed we were not, we as in fox news, would not be promoting, would not be encouraging and putting a stop to that kind of sexual harassment culture. >> so o'reilly's attorney issuing a statement earlier this week suggesting he was a subject of a, quote, smear campaign orchestrated by far left organizations. so do you think this is really about politics, or does this only perpetuate the sigma that's surrounding sexual harassment in the workplace? >> well, there's definitely a stigma and doesn't have to just be ithe workplace. i think the personal lawyer for bill o'reilly had to make a statement. somebody had to say something about what was going on. i think the biggest, loudest statement was ultimately made. >> but is that predictable to you that they politicized snit. >> actually, that was very surprising and thanks for making that point. i didn't expect that. i didn't expect to say it was coming from the left. it was a left smear campaign to get him out of there.
i think ultimately the bottom line was the dollars. the dollars talked so he had to walk. >> you talked about the $65 million payout to o'reilly and ailes combined. the victims, the women that were being harassed i think it was only about $13 million or so. what kind of message does that send, katie? >> well, the $13 million is what we do know right now based upon the five women that were a part of the bill o'reilly sexual harassment scandal. we don't know the exact amounts for everything else. we know gretchen carlson got $20 million for the roger ailes claim. so, you know, it's a huge amount of money. it may be a drop in a bucket for a company like 24th century fox, but again, you want to have a good optic. i don't care what you do, but especially when you're the media you want to make sure the optic you have is positive and not encouraging this type of behavior. >> msnbc analyst katie phang, thank you. that wraps things up for my
hour. my colleague gigi stone woods is next. i'll see you back here at 5:00. you're watching msnbc. time's up, insufficient we're on prenatal care.es. and administrative paperwork... your days of drowning people are numbered. same goes for you, budget overruns. and rising costs, wipe that smile off your face. we're coming for you, too. for those who won't rest until the world is healthier, neither will we. optum. how well gets done.
hello everybody. i'm gigi stone woods at msnbc headquarters in new york. happening now on this earth day, tens of thousands of people making their voices heard around the world by taking part in the march for science. marchers are hoping to bring awareness to the need for more funding for scientific research while others are there to protest lawmakers who ignore evidence-based research when enacting legislation. and some are angry with president trump who has proposed cutting funds toence. nbc's morgan radford is with marchers in new york city. but first we go to the main march at the national mall in washington, d.c. ali, what's going on where you are? >> reporter: so if you can see behind me there are people coming back from the capitol walking down pennsylvania avenue. and basically this march went from the national mall where they had a whole ral