tv MSNBC Live MSNBC September 30, 2017 2:00pm-3:00pm PDT
helpful information about healthcare options. leaving you more time to think about more important things. like not having to think about healthcare at all. surround yourself with healthy advantages at aarpadvantages.com/health. >> hi, everybody, good to have you with me. i'm thomas roberts at msnbc headquarters in new york. puerto rico recovery. new video from san juan today. we know that the president is taking time away from the white house. he is in his golf resort, bed minister, new jersey, for the weekend. we have heard from him tweeting. early today he spoke to the governors in puerto rico and the u.s. virgin islands, putting out praise that the administration has received from both leaders, coming just hours after he fired off a series of tweets attacking the mayor of san juan for,
quote, not being able to get her workers to help. a sharp rebuke in response to the mayor's statement. >> we are dying and you are killing us with the inefficiency and the bureaucracy. i'm done being polite. i am done being politically correct. i am mad as hell. because my people's lives are at stake. >> joining me now on the phone is congressman luis gutierrez of illinois. sir, when we know what's going on with the federal reaction, or lack thereof, as a politician and also someone that has deep roots in puerto rico, explain what you've done to try and help the people to answer the mayor's call. >> number one, there's been so much -- let me just put it to
you this way. i went to comeddio, puerto rico today, and i saw workers, puerto ricans, who have been working for days on end, with barely any sleep. i saw people wake up this morning and try to take mud and debris out of their homes, to begin to reconstruct their lives with no water, with no food, but still trying. i've met doctors and nurses, police officers. i've met members of the armed forces of puerto rican descent, who left their families in the united states, the safety and certainty of their families in the united states and have volunteered to come here. these are people that are volunteering, but they don't have the resources. and to call them lazy, to call them irresponsible, to say that they won't pick themselves up by their own bootstraps, is just a lie. it's irresponsible and repugnant. the people of puerto rico don't
need people to blame them for this tragedy and for this hurricane, when they are doing everything within their power. there is no water, there is no electricity. people are in dire need. let me just say, thank you. i want to thank the thousands of members of fema that have come from the united states to work. they too work without rest. people are working here, mr. president, and they need you to come here and show leadership, instead of attacking people, come and help us. stop attacking and stop holding us responsible. i know you want to make one puerto rican the good person and the other one the bad person. they're all patriots. they're all trying to help, and they all have different methods in which to express it. you should receive them all equally. >> sir, when we think about what you've seen today, we can hear the emotion in your voice. with going back to speak to colleagues now in d.c., what do
you want to tell them as an eyewitness to what you've seen and also what you've done? >> i want to tell them, i did a flyover puerto rico, there were people who cannot get out of their homes. there are bridges that have been washed away. they're not there. roads that have been washed away. there are people that are isolated. and i saw brave men and women rescuing them. i'm so proud of all of those first responders here in puerto rico and from the united states that are helping. but we need more. the response has been not the one that is needed here on the island of puerto rico. there's just not water. and when you hear somebody crying out for help, you help them! you help them! when you see somebody down and saying there are people dying in puerto rico, you will see the result of a lack of inefficiency and inaction on the part of the
federal government. but at the same hand, i also saw so many people, the bureaucracy and the tying up of hands, it should be all hands on. the president of the united states should have been here already. ten days into this tragedy, and he's out in a resort, and he has the gall and the temerity to say that we're lazy. where are you working, mr. president? where are you today? why aren't you here personally seeing what's going on? you have air force one, you have all the comforts that we as american citizens provide you as the president of the united states. come here, become a little uncomfortable, roll your sleeves up, and give us a hand, instead of slapping us down. >> congressman, we've gotten tweets today from the president talking about the fact that he and the first lady will visit puerto rico on tuesday. also hoping to make a stop in the u.s. virgin islands. but a tweet we got three hours
ago, was saying despite the fake news media in conjunction with the dems, an amazing job is being done in puerto rico. great people. we do know that the comfort the naval vessel, that is a surgical medical hospital is en route there, leaving norfolk, virginia just the other day. it should arrive by tuesday. when we think about staged assets that are needed to be in place, knowing that a storm like this could devastate the territory of puerto rico, that hasn't suffered a storm like this in some 90 years. is there a defense for why there wasn't a better plan of staged assets in place, considering we did have heavy damage in texas and florida? >> let me just say this. i'm going to make it clear. i'm very proud of the men and women of fema that are here. i know that they too go without sleep. i see the tears in their eyes. i see the anguish in their
faces. and they are doing everything they can and knowing that it's not enough. so let's just set that aside for one thing. on the other level, look, monday before maria struck puerto rico, already in chicago, there was a mobilization. if the people of chicago, if the people of new york, it's the puerto rican diaspora from across the united states was preparing days before maria got here and was able to bring resources within hours of the hurricane hitting, yes, hitting the island of puerto rico, why wasn't the federal government ready? is there no plan in place for the people of puerto rico when it meets a tragedy? and i have to tell you, the memories that is here that i know in everybody's minds of cat rein rena, just comes back. i remember seeing thousands of americans day in and day out just stuck in that football
stadium, one day after another. don't repeat the same mistake again. people died because of a lack of action and priorization of our federal government. let me just say, i wish all of you could come here, i wish there was video you could see of people cleaning out their homes with nothing. just to see the mud and the debris filled with the rivers that have overflowed, seeing people who are trapped, and seeing people risking their lives to rescue them, and the president saying that they want everything handed to them. no, mr. president, people are working, come here and see. quiet down your twitter and open your heart to the people of puerto rico. >> congressman, gutierrez, thank you, sir. we appreciate your time. >> thank you. >> i know a lot of people are very grateful to see you today arriving with some supplies. i know that fema and the military are grateful for your
kind words as well. again, the president is scheduled to go to puerto rico next week. the expectation is to. >>a reiff for-- is to arrive fo. it was earlier where the governor of puerto rico talked about the progress or lack thereof in the island territory. so far, 714 gas stations are operational out of 1,100. fema is saying they'll be receiving 230 containers of food and water to distribute. 41 hospitals are open, relying on diesel powered generators. nbc latino editor sandra lily joins me now. i know your mom just got here. so from a reporter perspective and a personal perspective, merge the two to explain, one, how family was able to get out safely. but also the long road ahead, what it means for puerto rico.
>> my family was one of the lucky ones. my mom was going to come two weeks from now, we were able to change the flight. the united person was incredibly helpful and able to make it happen, which was unbelievable. but it really is a question of, we were on the phone with folks in puerto rico, before i was here on the set, and the word is, there's one attorney from the island that said, please tell people when you're on the air, that this is an american tragedy. what people have to understand is that we are americans. it's unprecedented. i think it was something that people saw coming when they saw th the hurricane. that was just the reaction. i was talking to a local reporter just an hour ago. she said that she sees the action and people do see the boots on the ground, the people coming, and that is not being disputed. it's a question of distribution. and that is the big, big, big problem right now, how do you get from here to there. and this local reporter said,
you know, you see all the action in san juan. you see everybody, you see fema, you see everybody. but then she says, every day when i drive to the center of the island, i just don't see any action in the center of the island. and i had a mayor from a town, the stories that you hear are unbelievable, what congressman gutierrez was saying is true. he was telling me about old people who are living alone in their homes. but because there have been some problems with some roads, they knew they were there, they couldn't get to them. he had to give one of the generators of his emergency operating center to a family with a baby that needed oxygen. he was like, how was i not going to give that generator to that family? the big problem is not about politics, it's just getting the goods from here to there. there is so water or food. we're getting on our nbc latino facebook page this morning an sos from someone, no water, no food, please do something. of course we forwarded the
information we got. but that's the reality on the ground. and i think that's what everybody has to focus on right now, how do you get water and food into the island. >> do we have a firm number of confirmed deaths? because that seems to be an issue that is debatable right now. associated with the storm, officials on the island saying some people have died from natural causes over the last several days. >> and i was talking to a source who has a sister-in-law as a nurse in a hospital and she's seen deaths because of lack of oxygen. those numbers are not being reported but what we're getting from sources, the numbers are increasing. when you think about the fact that when hospitals run out of diesel, in that temporary time, if you are someone that needs machines, things happen. >> with the diesel fuel, this is just a bandaid for the longer issue of getting this back up and running. your brother saying, being blown to the stone ages.
>> that's correct. >> this is a big concern, not just in the days and weeks to come, but for the years to come. i think people are very happy to here about your mom being here, and so we're grateful you have that opportunity. thank you so much. dozens of celebrities have been raising their voices, using their platforms to help people in puerto rico to raise money or send recovery supplies. and among them is former yankees star catcher and puerto rican native jorge posada. he and his wife spearheading a fundraising campaign to aid hurricane relief in puerto rico. and they have a history of already giving, charitable efforts, launching the jorge posada foundation. joining me now, georgia and laura posada in miami. great to have you both here. jorge, let me start with you. the type of things you've been able to do in raising your voice about this, and the action that you've been able to spearhead. what have you been able to
deliver to friends and family in puerto rico? >> i was just there, i got back thursday, from sunday to thursday, and i was able to take a plane with a lot of goods for family and friends, and we also donated a lot of water and canned foods to the hospital, the children's hospital in guaynabo. and we are doing it again tomorrow. we raised today from 11:00 to 4:00, at a warehouse, collecting water, canned foods, and stuff that people are in need. obviously generators and stuff like that. my wife have put up a fund to raise money so we can, you know, pay for the flights to go down there. we're going to go -- she's going to go tomorrow, sunday, to puerto rico, i'm going monday and tuesday, to different parts of the island to try to give water we have collected. >> and laura, i think a lot of people might be surprised at the direct efforts of well-known
americans, people of means in this country, have been able to do, as jorge points out, about getting a plane and flying in directly to deliver things that our own federal government has been unable to do. what has been the most surprising thing that you've heard, the stories from people in puerto rico, about the fact that maybe you or jorge are showing up to give them things that the government isn't? >> well, i think it's really hard because there's no communication. so sometimes when i talk to my family members, they don't even know what they're doing. they don't know help is coming. i have family members that live in san sebastian in the western part of the island and i was able to get in touch with them last night for the first time. what they said to me was, we have no food. we have no water, please come to puerto rico, help us. so even our own families are needing food and they're needing water. so what they said before is
true. help is getting there, it's getting to san juan, but the distribution around the island is really, really difficult. and people are not lying, this is not a game. people are actually dying. i heard a story recently about this elderly lady whose husband died in the storm. she was trapped in her house, she wasn't able to call for help, she wasn't able to get her united states husband out of her house. his body started decomposing and she had to bury her own husband in her backyard. these are the things that are happening in puerto rico right now. so we need help. we're just two people. and we're doing the best that we can. and i appreciate all the celebrities that are donating money, but this is not just about saying i'm going to donate a million dollars. you have to get your hands dirty. you have to go down to puerto rico. you have to work hard and you have to help the people in the island. as mr. trump said, yes, it is an
island surrounded by water. so people don't have a choice. we need to get there and we need to help. >> so, jorge, and i'm sure laura, you as well, living in new york city and being so high profile, playing for the yankees, being so skeuccessful, you probably brushed in certainly circles with donald trump who is now our president. are you surprised by the level of animosity that he has expressed toward puerto rican officials, specifically the mayor of san juan for saying that federal aid hasn't been good enough? >> yeah, i'm not going to get into politics. the people of puerto rico need help. and she's desperate. and you can see how, you know, her voice is cracking. it's just the people need, you know, a lot of supplies. >> what i can tell you about the mayor of san juan, this morning, i was able to get donated 30,000 pounds of chicken wings, yogurt
and jello that was refrigerated in puerto rico, that somebody graciously donated. i called her at 8:00 in the morning, and i told her i had this food available for the people of puerto rico, and at 11:00 a.m., she was there collecting that food. i also had a phone call with her where i offered, if i give you $25,000 for casa kuhna, which is a home where they have six newborn children, i said if i give you $25,000, what will you do with that money? and she said, laur a i don't want your money right now, please come to the island and bring the people. bring the baby's formula, diapers, water, and everything that the babies need. money is not good for us right now. we need food, we need water, and we need people to come here and get their hands dirty and work to help the people of puerto rico. >> jorge, when are you going back? >> i'm going back monday and she's going back sunday. >> i'm going back sunday, monday and tuesday. we're taking turns.
we work as a team. because we also have a team of friends helping us here. everything that we're doing is through family and friends. the puerto ricans have united and this has become an amazing experience. we're together, we're american citizens, we're strong, and we're going to bring puerto rico back. >> we'd love to have you back on and hear more about what you've been able to do. what a dynamic. jorge, we love you, but i think we're in love with laura more now. she's pretty cool. >> tomorrow, i want to let you know, tomorrow we're flying a plane, and they gave us, they donate 80 seats for us and we're going to fly back here to florida people who have medical conditions that cannot be taken care of on the island. people that need dialysis, people that need respirators, people that need oxygen. so we're flying back all those people tomorrow and we're going to do this again tuesday and thursday. so we're definitely working hard. this is no joke, and puerto rico needs help. >> laur a real quickly, when you talk about medical needs, one
thing that i was hearing from a source on the island is the issue of people that do suffer from diabetes and that could have issues from the fact that they aren't going to be having proper medication such as insulin shots that needs to be refrigerated before being distributed on a daily basis. have you heard anything specifically about folks suffering -- >> well, that is actually my dad's situation. my dad is a diabetic. he needs insulin. and his roof blew off at his house. a storm came in, the house got full of water. he had no electricity. so he was basically surviving on people's help, and when somebody got eice, they would come to th house, he would try to keep the insulin cold. and thank god i was able to get my family out of the island just two days ago. but this is my family. imagine the other people who don't have the means that we have and who lost everything.
this is no joke. the hospitals have generators, but there's no gasoline. there's no diesel. and you have to understand that most of the supplies that they had in these hospitals are now ruined. so it's just a catastrophe, a disaster, and we can't stay with our hands crossed. we really all have to chip in, get our hands dirty, get involved and go help the people of puerto rico. >> thank you both so much. really appreciate your time. >> thank you, guys. >> not only for the interview, but everything you're doing currently. certainly inspiring. love to have you back on, laura and jorge posada. >> thank you very much. >> so if you're inspired, we have information for you on how you can help for specifically in puerto rico, also other storm victims here at home. check out nbc news.com/puerto rico specifically for aid after maria. and the other big headline from this week has been about the resignation of tom price, the health and human services
secretary leaving the trump cabinet. this is kind of an anticipated exit. some people were gambling 50/50 on this because of the headlines about his opulent habit of private jet travel. but it could be an indication of a microscope being placed on other cabinet members and how they've been getting around. are they doing so at the taxpayers' expense in a really, really exhaustive and disgusting way. we'll talk about that after this. at is that? it's you! it's me? alright emma, i know it's not your favorite but it's time for your medicine, okay? you ready? one, two, three. [ both ] ♪ emma, emma bo-bemma ♪ banana-fana-fo-femma ♪ fee-fi-fo-femma ♪ em-ma very good sweety, how do you feel? good. yeah? you did a really good job, okay? [ female announcer ] to nurses everywhere, thank you, from johnson & johnson.
>> i don't like to see that happen, and i think it's a shame because as a human being, tom price is a very good man. i can tell you. >> so there we have president trump yesterday talking about the possible departure of tom price, his health and human services secretary. the tone might have been, he's a very good man, because later in the day, we have the commander in chief accepting price's resignation, all after the
growing scrutiny, the headlines about price's use of private air travel, all at the expense of taxpayers. and it's a pretty hefty bill, considering price spent a staggering $400,000 in private jet travel since may. if you add in military transport, he used a couple of times internationally, that cost goes way up. much higher. the secretary writing the government, though, a $51,000 check, to cover his seat on a plane, that's if it were commercial. but that amount only represents a fraction of the overall travel bill. joining us now to discuss the price exit kathryn and anita. great to have you with me. kathryn, let me begin with you. as we look at "the new york times," they report that president trump berated price in a meeting that lasted a couple of hours yesterday. do you think this was a foregone conclusion with price exiting, not only because of the
headlines that he was generating, but that he really wasn't getting the repeal and replace mission of what the president wanted done? >> bingo. i think that's what this is exactly about. there are a number of cabinet members who have chosen to use the treasury as their personal biggie bank. they've not been gone yet, not been forced out the door, and i attribute that maybe partly to the fact that the scale of the private travel that price engaged in was so much greater. but more so it was -- trump sees it as personally embarrassing to him that his hhs secretary was not able to seal the deal on the aca repeal. >> anita, how much of the departure message, you know, that we know from price and that trump has said he's a very good man, but now we have the headlines of ryan zinke or steve mnuchin, also kellyanne conway, their travel, and as kathryn points out, using treasury as
their private piggy bank. as the scrutiny gets more intense of their travel logs, do you think any of them will be caught in the cross hairs? >> i believe with tom price it was more headlines and money that we know of so far, but it's not over at all. you've mentioned some of the cabinet secretaries. it's clear that the white house does not know about all of the travel and wants to know. so they're asking the administration, you know, come and tell us now. they're not going to allow this travel in the future, but still we've got eight or nine months of, you know, possible hundreds of millions of dollars. so i don't think it's going to go anywhere. there was an important thing that happened this week, there's been so much news this week that maybe people didn't see it, but the house oversight committee has said they're going to investigate this, not just from the white house, but two dozen different agencies. >> so we can spend a bunch more money to know that the secretary spent an opulent amount of money, pretending that he was a
jet setter on the taxpayer dime. that seems pretty wasteful right there, especially since his resignation was accepted. but when we think about the check, $51,000 written to pay everybody back, in comparison to what was spent, wouldn't have price have known better as a career politician? someone who raled against, you know, the type of overspending that we witnessed in d.c. for decades? >> yes, he definitely should have known better. but i do want to emphasize as embarrassing and wrong and wasteful as all of this travel was, it is far from, in my view, the worst things that price has been up to. by which i mean deliberately and methodically undermining what is the law of the land, the affordable care act. and we're not even talking about any of the things that he's done there by which i refer to cutting outreach spending, making sure that health care.gov is taken offline for 12 hours a day every sunday during open-enrollment period, using money that's been earmarked for
the affordable care act to run a pr campaign against it. so there are a lot of other things that he's done that he's not being held accountable for. >> thank you very much, kathryn. anita, thank you too for your time. the other big story we've been following is how the president has reacted via twitter at the mayor of san juan, pauuerto rico, lashing ou because the mayor had said what's taking place on the u.s. territory, the island, is a major humanitarian crisis and one hollywood actor came to the mayor's defense on twitter and had some really harsh words for the president. coming up next, i'm going to be joined by the actor, luis guzman to talk about that, and what compelled him to fire back at the president. stick around. . let's do this. got it. book the flights! hai! si! si! ya! ya! ya! what does that mean for us? we can get stuff. what's it mean for shipping? ship the goods. you're a go! you got the green light. that means go! oh, yeah. start saying yes to your company's best ideas.
more now on the situation in puerto rico, the recovery efforts there as well as the white house's role in recent relief efforts or lack thereof. in the wake of criticism of the federal government's response to the ongoing crisis in the u.s. territory, president trump took to twitter today, slamming the mayor of san juan over critical comments she delivered about him and the federal government
response. basically the mayor was sending out pleas for help, saying it was a humanitarian crisis there, and the president responded by saying, through twitter, such poor leadership ability by the mayor of san juan and others in puerto rico who are not able to get their workers to help. they want everything to be done for them, when it should be a community effort. 10,000 federal workers now on island doing a fantastic job. but the president has tweeted more recently about a community effort of all americans needing to support the island nation and helping people in puerto rico, also praising the response of the federal government, the relief efforts upon fema. it's our next guest, though, that had comments of his own for our president, tweeting earlier, donald, you're a heartless, soulless idiot, why do you even exist? #voices for puerto rico. #puerto rican lives matter. so the author of that text is the actor luis guzman and joins me now. good to have you with me. do you think that was
appropriate? >> very appropriate. >> why? >> well, you know what, this man is really self-serving. people are dying. and to be putting out things on twitter that he does, you know, why don't he roll up his sleeves and go to puerto rico and get his feet wet and see the suffering that's going on there with our people. instead of sending out these ridiculous tweets. >> luis, the president is going to be arriving there, he said via twitter on tuesday with the first lady to see what has happened to the u.s. territory after maria. also we know that there was an issue that the nation suffered after irma came through, this one-two punch for not only puerto rico but the united states virgin islands. >> right. >> why do you think that this -- that the administration has been lax on a response to puerto rico as well as demeaning the requests of people like the mayor of san juan, when they're
trying to draw attention to what a burgeoning humanitarian crisis? >> well, you know, logistically, they didn't have it together. they didn't expect this type of catastrophic storm to take out a whole nation the way it has. and on the ground there, i mean, how do you prepare for something like this? i can just say that the people of puerto rico are there, trying to really keep it together. i got an opportunity yesterday to speak to my brother and father who live in agua deezia. and the way that they described when that storm hit and what they're going through, you just could see it in the faces, the terror. my concern more than anything is not the politics, is not the tweeting. it's the humanitarian aid that has to get to the people. i have posted stuff on facebook, look, there's an airport in san juan. there's an airport in agua
deezia, there's an airport in bons yay. why are they not being used? why are the roads not being cleared. the villages up in the mountains that have not been communicated with. bridges have been destroyed. why are there not helicopter airlifting? so logistically it's been a nightmare there. but i'm only hoping that it gets better for our people because they deserve it. they deserve the help. and you know what, i'm going to speak my mind, you know, the response was way too long. and people are dying. now my father told me yesterday, a hospital ran out of diesel fuel and 14 people that were on life support died. they died. and why is this happening? because on the ground, logistically, you know, it's a lot. it's daunting, but if people, you know, one governor cannot
run this whole show. everything has to be delegated out, different parts of the island. you get a hundred people working at these airports. your job, unload the stuff, get the truck drivers, and get it into motion, you know. that's what has to happen. i mean, it's a desperate situation there. >> and one thing that eyewitness reporting and certainly information from your dad we'd like to learn more about, again, nbc news not independently verifying the 14 deaths that you speak of there, and one thing that's been hard to get, hard numbers about those that have lost family members, lost lives, because of maria, because there are territory officials there that are not saying that there are -- that there will be a direct correlation to maria. what you're talking about is in these ten days that have passed, and the fact that there is not power restored, or there are not properly adequate, you know,
things at hospitals that people need -- >> how about people -- >> this is a big problem that they've got on -- got to categorize this as being 35partf the humanitarian crisis. >> how about people that need dialysis and haven't gotten that? how about people that need insulin? there's no insulin because there's no refrigeration. 5% of the island has electricity. 5%. what does that tell you? that people are dying. people are suffering. there's no running water. people are drinking water out of the creeks that they have. there's no gas. so, you know, we know what the problem is now. we just got to kind of overcome these logistics. and it could be done. you know i just saw the interview that you did with the posadas, i love what they're doing. so many of us here in the states making every effort. but the problem s i have friends
that have like cargo planes loaded with water, ready to go, but when they land, there's no one to receive, there's no one to take off these palettes of water, there's no trucks. so, again, the logistics need to get better. people need to delegate -- >> louisuis, with the president tweeting earlier today, criticizing the mayor and saying that the mayor and other leaders, they're not able to get their workers to help. what do you think that that message was? i mean, is that the example that you're saying, there aren't people there to receive it? shouldn't that be on fema and those sending in relief efforts, or should that be on community efforts? >> what the president is saying again, i don't agree with. he's critical of everything.
and i'm not even going to get into that. it's a waste of my time. but again, logistically, you know, when this happened, the island wasn't ready. you know, they did not have a management crisis team ready to say, okay, this is what has to happen now. you know, they're figuring it out as it goes. and right now, again, people on the ground there, they're trying their best. they really truly are trying their best. the earth would move in puerto rico, you know, roads were demolished. there were landslides. so it's, okay, really, i always go back to the logistics. you gotta set brigades of people, heavy equipment, start moving stuff, do the best you can, put up temporary bridges. utilize helicopters. you know, get medical teams into all these different areas.
i mean, like i say, i'm here in the united states and i think of all these things, and i'm sure some of these things are being done. it's slow to come by, but again, you know, i think just a lot of the responsibility in this humanitarian effort has to be delegated. politics does not have a place for this. you know, because no matter what political affiliation you have, you're affected. you're affected. and your people are dying, your grandparents are dying, and your neighbors are dying. and it's like four people having to share one bottle of water. one bottle of water for people in a day. you know, crackers, whatever. there's no gas. you know, so, again, puerto rico will come back. we are strong people. we are united people. and there is a silver lining for us. every day we're going to make the progress. it's going to be baby steps at a
time, but we'll get there together. you know, we're very talented people, very loving people, we're very spiritual people. and you know what, we ourselves, we will lift ourselves up. and i can't say enough about all the people here in the states that have been sending stuff over, you know, and if anybody in puerto rico sees this, just know my people, you are not forgotten. you're in our hearts, we're going to try to do everything that we can. and again, politics, you know what, this is not the place, this is not the time. our people are dying. and we're going to do our best to get help there. >> luis guzman, stay in touch with us, keep us posted on efforts that you're making. we've gotten a lot of reaction via social media on that interview and i'm sure yours is going to spark the same. thank you, sir. >> thank you very much, i appreciate it. absolutely. straight ahead the russia investigation and social media, we have members of the senate
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so facebook, twitter, google, they have been asked to publicly testify before congress in the investigation into russian meddling of the 2016 presidential election. so will more scrutiny of tech companies shed any light on the extent of russian operatives who targeted voters? i want to bring in our guests, tara maller for the counterextremism project and former cia military analyst. also senior writer for "newsweek" bill powell and former federal prosecutor kendall coughey. tech giants that are going to work with congress, does that strengthen mueller investigation and strengthen up as a society if they make some head way?
>> i think it's finally important. we saw in this election just how important social media is, and now we're seeing that there may have been a systematic, highly sophisticated foreign government's campaign in our social media. i think what we'll see through these hearings and otherwise, whether there can be reforms that the giants in the industry itself can implement, whether federal laws with respect to potential interference by federal governments can be strengthened and the standpoint of counsel mueller, whether specific criminal laws were violated with the purchase of ads apparently by a russian operative or foreign national. >> when we think about google joining twitter and facebook in this widening investigation, when we think about google, certainly a much larger company with its range of services. what kind of direction could a congressional investigation take? >> well, i think i agree with kendall. the scrutiny is healthy. and i think everyone involved in
this is obviously feeling their way. because this is new territory. and so i think what the oversight committees want and justifiably, are answers as to just how the range the intrusions using the social media sites, just how the extent to which the mettling occurred, the methods, the more granular detail that we can get about all of this will help us direct defenses before the next election occurs. >> that's a big point right there. trying to put up a type of fire wall to prevent any type of meddling from these huge american companies, when we think about facebook or twitter or google, places that were born in this country because of great enterprise and ideas and free speech. then we think about it being
reversed against us to interfere in how we're going to have our democracy. the big revelation, though, is 200 accounts that were tied to the same russian operatives, who bought at least $150,000 worth of political ads on facebook is now tied to twitter. is that really that big of a number? people are probably scratching their heads thinking, how could 200 accounts give that big of an impact on the 2016 campaign and election? >> sure. the question, is that even the number? bottom line here, whether you're looking at intrusion into the political process, money potentially coming in from the russians via fake accounts or bots, or looking at this for national security implications of influence campaigns and sort of operations online. this is extremely important, and i think you're going to see pressure from the house, both the intel committee on the house and senate side on these executives to not only present data showing evidence for what
they were doing with regards to taking down these accounts, if they even were, a little what they'll do going forward. it's possible election laws were violated in terms of foreign governments buying campaign ads on behalf of trying to influence the election. that violating campaign regulations here in the united states. to date, there have been operations how they operate online or checks and balances. we see it happening not just with intrusions on the elections but pressure on tech companies with what they're doing with regards to other areas like terrorist operating on these platforms. you'll see the tide start to turn as more scrutiny is put on companies like facebook, google and facebook. in all fairness, new issues they're grappling with and have to focus more on this to prevent it from happening again in the next election. >> probably didn't even dream of the wild success they'd have or reverse engineer thinking how it could be used in a nefarious way.
thank you all. appreciate it. as we all have been following the bouncing ball of headlines, it's only one week since president trump's controversial attacks on nfl players, and the backlash continuing to grow, but trump has not backed down from the anthem. >> i noticed last night, or was told, i didn't see it, but i heard everybody stood for the national anthem. and that shows respect for our country, our flag, and for the national anthem. so, you know, i'm very happy. i heard that. and they should stand. you have to stand. it's our national anthem. you have to stand. >> all right. that was the packers/bears game and where they were encouraged. fans stood up, players locking arms on the field. trump added he talked to numerous team owners and senses the owners are in the a box when it comes to the national anthem protests. joining me now, sports writer from espnw and espn magazine. explain why owners would be in a
box? when they think about how -- we've seen them come out in support of this. although colin kaepernick is not working, but they came out on the field, some, anyway. jerry jones even getting down. you think that would -- >> you never think that would come and that speaks to how whitewashed this movement has become from a players' perspective i don't doubt sincerity when they lock arms or kneel during the anthem. feels like owners are doing what's trendy. because trump specifically called them out they had to respond in some way. woody johnson, owner of the jets, the ambassador to the uk. nfl is trying to expand a team to london. there are all kinds of different political balms moving around here. i think nfl owners are trying to be opportunistic with the pr spectacle. >> ravens doing what they did and then standing for "god save the queen." interesting pr move there.
the issue with thinking about the nfl on sunday. seen reaction on social media. people burning tickets, and firing back at players, they'll burn their jerseys. do you anticipate from sources you've spoken to this will be a trend we'll keep seeing? >> honestly, i don't. we're seeing it in the moment and i ask those people burning thousands of dollars in season tickets why this issue? why is it the flag? why not the cte or domestic problem? what is it about what's happening now that is angering you so much that didn't anger you in the past? >> do you think players will take a knee. >> i think some will continue, absolutely. michael bennett, outspoken and a whole issue with the las vegas police department and video that came out around that, recently. i do think players will continue to take a knee. whether or not it's supported by owners remains to be seen. >> thank you so much. appreciate it. so it was a lecture intended for cadets of the u.s. air force academy.
but the lesson on race has gone viral. it happened after racial slurs against several black students were found on message boards. leader of the air force academy ordered cadets to take out their phones and record his words. record the message. take a look. >> that kind of behavior has no place at the prep school, and has no place at usafa and no place at the united states air force. you should be outraged not only as an airman but as a human being. >> lieutenant jay silveria saying sparking protests in charlottesville, ferguson and the nfl entered civility in respect. air force says it launched an investigation into the messages that were left on those different digital boards. so we'll see where that goes. the other story we followed is the "playboy" founder hugh hefner passed away this week, age 91. a lot of people will remember
the hef for controversial centerfolds promoting sexual liberation. what he said they did. also made him a fortune. however, this media mogul is remembered for his progressive politics in very specific areas. here is the late dick gregory talking about hefner back in 2001. >> you had a courage when no one was bringing in blacks and minorities and let you stand flat-footed in america and just talk. you brought me in. you came to a black nightclub in chicago and saw me, and the next thing someone said hef wants you to work the playboy club. no instructions. i was there. >> very early on hefner used his iconic magazine to empower black writers, entertainers and artists, in his personal life used money and influence to fight racial injustice. columnist for the "daily beast" joins me now. great to see you.
>> great to see you, too. >> when you think about hugh hefner, that's not the first thing that comes to mind leaving behind a legacy with a footprint in civil rights but he really does. explain. >> no, it's not, thomas. i said in my piece, you hear the name playboy and think of, well, breasts. he left behind a more important legacy particularly in the cause of civil rights. opened his wallet in numerous ways to help the civil rights movement in america. one of the most notable something dick gregory revealed before he passed away. trying to put together money towards a reward to help solve one of the most notorious cases, the murder of three civil rights workers in mississippi, hugh hefner helped support that to break the case. and dr. martin luther king one of the major fundsers of a
charity after his death. and he published writers like james baldwin and alex haley conducted "playboy's" very first interview and interviewed people like dr. martin luther king and mall kocolm x. that is something a bit overlooked. >> think about the magazine itself. considerable fortune, especially early on. the way he was able to dominate the conversations about sex and society and many people thought this was sexist or misogynistic. but he didn't think this freedom of, you know, the freedom of speech and also the expression of women being celebrated in this manner was that big of a deal, but the audience was straight white men and he made a lot of money off it and used that money to pour back into civil rights causes, and also featuring entertainers on his talk show, from the black community. did he ever walk the line, cross the line, where he got more
famous for civil rights action than playboy? >> i think you hit the nail on the head, tollhomas. a lot of white men in middle america buying "playboy" magazine to see what miss january was or was not wearing. might not have gone out to buy the autobiography of "malcolm x" but saw articles in "playboy" magazine. a genius in finding a way to use culture and entertainment and, yes, sexuality, to lure people in to have big conversations about big topics. that mattered. last i say, identify as a feminist and never felt conflict about his legacy in the way some of my feminist friends have, because i don't think taking off your clothes for a living makes you a feminist but doing so prekpluds you from being a woman and hefner's legacy makes a
distinction. >> the magazine a lot more than the photographs. i only ever got it for the articles, i know. >> i have heard that from a lot of guys. >> you know it's true from me. from "the daily beast." great to see you. >> great to see you, too. that wraps up this episode. stay tuned for the latest headlines. joy reid is next. again, and i can say this to you with a smile, i am not going to be distracted. my small comments, by politics, by petty issues. this is one goal, and it is sow save lives. >> yes. >> that's all that matters. >> in the aftermath of hurricane maria, mayor carmen cruz of san juan puerto rico is speaking out begging for help for residents of her city, who, of course, are american citizens. so they were rebuild and survive amid