tv Morning Joe MSNBC April 17, 2020 3:00am-6:00am PDT
misleading maybe to compare what we're going through now with hiv or sars. they're really different. >> but we don't know, this could disappear. i mean, sars did pretty much disappear. this could, as well, correct? >> yeah, yeah. you know, anything could, laura, but i have to tell you, the degree of efficiency of transmissibility of this is really unprecedented in anything i've seen. it is an extraordinarily efficient virus in transmitting from one person to another. >> dr. fauci -- >> these viruses don't just disappear. >> wow. >> good morning. welcome to "morning joe." it is friday. april 17th. long week. along with joe, willie, and me, we have msnbc national affairs analyst, co-host of showtime's "the cirrus," and editor in chief of the "recount," john heilemann. and from axios, jim vandehei.
good to have you all on board. that was a bit disturbing. >> something is happening. >> what's the angle there? >> there's an angle. we'll be asking this morning what's exactly going on. it's very interesting, willie. yesterday, i don't know if you saw this, but dr. oz and dr. phil, tv doctors, were going out, basically saying, "people are going to die. they're going to die." something is going on here. it is interesting that -- i saw a tweet this morning from morton. "notice how the people who, at first, didn't take this pandemic seriously, and then tried to gaslight you about understanding it sooner than anyone. now that mitigation works, they're the first people who are saying we shouldn't take it seriously again." a lot of the same people that
mocked the medical experts and said it was the media's new hoax to overplay this pandemic, at the same time, donald trump was saying it is 15 people and soon it'll be down to zero. then came around and said, "yeah, we knew this before anybody else." now, they're trying to do it -- well, here. let's play -- >> this is tuesday night. >> in the dr. phil. this is dr. phil from last night. let's try to figure out what the hell is going on. >> 250 people a year die from poverty. the poverty line is getting such that more and more people are going to fall below that because the economy is crashing around us. they're doing that because people are dying from the coronavirus. i get that. but, look, the fact of the matter is, we have people dying 45,000 people a year from automobile accidents. 480,000 from cigarettes. 360,000 a year from swimming
po pools. we don't shut the country down for that, but yet we're doing it for this? >> willie, the stupidity of that, i just -- i'll let others explain just how stupid that is. here's another tv doctor. dr. oz saying, "yeah, kids are going to die." roll the tape. >> i'll tell ya, schools are a very appetizing opportunity. i just saw a nice piece arguing the opening of schools may only cost up 2% to 3% in terms of total mortality. any life is a life lost. to get every child back into a school where they're safely being educated, being fed, and making the most of their lives, with a theoretical risk on the back side, might be a trade-off some folks would consider. >> willie -- >> had to walk it back2% to 3% children? i mean, my god. it is, again -- as dr. fauci
said, it is unprecedented. i want to show one more thing that i saw. i don't sleep much. especially during this crisis. i saw this in the early morning, i think. it was erik erikson who put up this chart. a conservative. he said, "this is not the flu." sources of cdc covid tracking project. look at the lines. here's dr. oz's car crashes. you have the flu, the 2017 -- dr. phil. you have the 2017/2018 flu. the '57/'58 asian flu with pneumonia. look at the line that goes up for covid-19. that's what eric eri eriksson p out. he said a nurse didn't support him because of trump during the
election. she got off of facebook because she's saddened by all of her friends saying this is overblown. she's never seen anything like this in her 20 years of nursing. as dr. fauci said, this is unprecedented. it's not going to just go away. that doesn't mean we don't have to figure out, as we've been saying here, the balance between reopening the economy and the pandemic. but lives are going to be lost because of the propaganda that is being spewed out there. it really has started the past couple of days by so many different -- dr. phil and dr. oz and so many other people. >> yeah. you had the tale of three doctors that you just showed, all on fox news, speaking to the fox news audience. dr. fauci brought information. i think it is important for doctors to go all over the place and talk to all the audiences. he rebutted laura ingraham's theory about hiv there, point by point, and presented facts.
the other two doctors, oz and phil, both very smart men. then you ask yourself, what's going on there? dr. phil knows that the reason the economy was shut down is because this is contagious. i can't believe i'm saying this out loud. in a way that car crashes and swimming pool drownings are not. so that's why the economy was shut down. so you wonder what's going on. i think the problem with tv doctors is, they think about tv ratings. they think about tv audiences. they know where they are. they know that where they are on the two shows, there was skepticism about the plan to shut down the comeconomy and th ongoing stay at home orders across the states. they fed into that and played into that. the problem is, they both have huge followings and audiences that listen to their every word. they know better. beth of those guys know better. they're not dumb guys. what are they up to? that's the question. >> bill clinton once said -- >> something with trump. maybe they want a job.
>> bill clinton said, if there is a turtle on top of a fence post, it didn't just get there by accident. somebody put it there. >> yeah. >> if something -- john heilemann, i've always told my kids, if something doesn't make sense, like, there's a reason it doesn't make sense. there's something going on. do you have any insight politically? here we have the president saying he is mussolini a couple days ago. mad dictator with ultra constitutional powers. a couple days later, we find out, as mika said before, that he's really just a wizard of oz. fat little man behind a curtain, pushing a lot of buttons, saying "i'm in power." now, you guys do whatever you want to do. at the same time, we have tv doctors, "oh, we have to get back to work." are they trying to set up governors, like in michigan and wisconsin and pennsylvania? is there -- am i being too
cynical here? are they trying to take the blame off of donald trump? he still doesn't have testing down. we still can't safely reopen the government. or what the hell is going on? why are these -- i guess they're real doctors. i've never seen their certificates. maybe -- i don't know. maybe we can get evidence today that they're real doctors. nobody is this ignorant. >> no. >> something is going on. do you have any insights into what the hell is going on here? why they're putting millions of americans' lives at risk? why they're talking about 2% to 3% of children dying being cool? i said a couple weeks ago, the argument by some people on the trumpist -- in the trumpist faction was, let the greatest generation die. it's going to happen. we, once again, rolled out the 2% to 3% mortality b.s. where our children and grandparents can die and, you
know what, that's the cost of running an economy. what's going on? >> yeah. well, i do not know anything about the personal relationships between either the single name doctors, dr. oz or dr. phil, with donald trump. i don't really know anything about the political affiliations of either one of those doctors. i'll start there. but i do think that, as donald trump has gotten closer to what's -- we know the economy is going to reopen, and we know it'll reopen in phases. that was always the case. we know donald trump does not have any authority, one way or the other, either to shut down the economies in these states. he didn't have that authority. he also doesn't have the authority to open the economies in the states. the authorities rest with the governors. donald trump with exhort, try to persua persuade. he can try the move the doctors through argumentation, through threats, through bribes, through whatever. he can't order anybody to do anything. it's clear that donald trump is
fixated on re-election. we know that. it is clear that donald trump looks at the unemployment numbers across, especially the states he knows he needs to win in the fall, and is terrified of the fact that a prolonged economic downturn, the likes of which we're almost certain to see, is imperilling his re-election every day. he is willing to gamble the lives of americans to try to restart these economies because he knows that that is the only pretext or premise or argument he has to make. it always was the case. the only lifeboat for donald trump was the economy. so is donald trump trying to set up a situation right now whereby he can somehow figure out a way to get credit for the economy opening up, while somehow blaming someone else, or setting up the notion that the death that's going to happen, if any economy is opened up prematurely, any state economy is opened prematurely, that that death is the cost of doing business. acceptable levels of mortality. that's the price we're going to have to pay, either to offload the blame directly on to
governors, or just essentially say, that was the inevitable cost of what we had to do. that's where he's trying to get to. what the doctors have to gain from propagating that view, and standing alongside donald trump, other than the weird satisfaction that a lot of people seem to get from standing in the glow of donald trump, or getting a pat on the head from him on television, i do not know if they have financial game they're playing. there's no doubt that that is what trump is trying to get done here. wants to open the economies and, somehow, wants to get the credit for putting people back to work, while not taking the blame, if there are outbreaks in these states going forward, which there inevitably will be if the states do get ahead of themselves and open too soon. without testing and tracking and all the other stuff. >> think about the fact that people that have been propagandas for donald trump from the beginning, mika. >> yeah. >> since this pandemic has been upon us, since the coronavirus has been upon us, before it was called a pandemic, have been downplaying this, mocking the
medical community, saying that it's being exaggerated. donald trump, time and again, "it is going to go away magically." as dr. fauci said, "it is not going away magically." "we only have one person from china, only 11 people. we have 15 people. soon, it'll be down to zero." now, they're at it again, and they're at it again in a way that's really dangerous. you know, i saw john heilemann's recount yesterday, and the blame shifting. >> yeah. >> i wonder if that's part of it. let's play this calendar. this is an updated calendar of what we showed you a couple days ago from the "recount." take a look. >> we have it totally under control. it's one person coming in from china. it's going to disappear. one day, it's like a miracle, it will disappear. our numbers are lower than just about anybody. yeah, no, i don't take responsibility at all.
people coming in from china, where this all started. it could have been stopped right where it came from, china. it came from china. got out of control. if you think about governor cuomo, building four hospitals, he's supposed to be buying his own ventilators. we're going to help. people like governor inslee, he should be doing more. he shouldn't be relying on the federal government. governor inslee, that's the state of washington. don't call the woman in michigan. she has no idea what's going on. all she does is say, "it's the federal government's fault." we've taken great care of michigan. we inherited, this administration inherited a broken system. the original tests, the ones we inherited, jim, as an example, they were broken. they were obsolete. remember, we inherited a broken system. we inherited a broken system. w.h.o., that's the world health organization, they missed the call. world health got it wrong. they got it very wrong. on many ways they were wrong. i'm not happy with the world health organization. the reality is that the w.h.o. failed to adequately obtain,
vet, and share information in a timely and transparent fashion. it would have been so easy to be truthful. the coronavirus, you know that, right? coronavirus. this is their new hoax. the 15, within a couple days, will be down close to zero. >> you know, we know one thing. as impactful as that is, it is going to be updated by the end of the day. it says 31,000 deaths. >> i know. >> the death count keeps skyrocketing up, like that chart that erik erikson tweeted out earlier. deaths are still going straight up. so many americans, millions of americans have been responsible, and they've stayed at home. they've taken social distancing seriously. the mitigation is helping right now, but, mika, in the recount video, donald trump blamed
china. of course, at the same time, before that, he'd said how great china was, they were transparent, and he thanked president xi. blamed the governors. blamed that woman from michigan. blamed other presidents. blamed the world health organization for basically taking the same stance he did. >> yeah. >> said, "why couldn't they just be truthful?" this is the same donald trump that basically called it a hoax. the coronavirus, he said coronavirus, and his audience booed at the, quote, hoax. that the media was overplaying it. medical community was overplaying it. the scientists were overplaying it. well, they weren't overplaying it, and now that mitigation is working, that listening to dr. fauci and dr. birx is working, now they're at it again. what the hell is going on? >> well, i think in terms of the media responsiblility, it is curious.
even the hosts we came in with, the attitude of the interviews are all in line with trump's desire to reopen the country. which he had this big pronouncement yesterday. >> before testing, before we're ready. >> yeah. a big pronouncement yesterday about a grand reopening, which is now given to the states, given to the governors, which he claimed he had absolute power over but now doesn't. because he would like the responsibility to lay on them. dr. birx laid out very clear guidelines as to how some businesses could reopen. they are specific. are they perfect? no. but they help with the physical distancing. they help with trying to stop the spread. that's all on us still. it's not testing. it's not therapeutics. it's not a vaccine. it was very uncomfortable to watch that host when we came in, pushing dr. fauci to try and say, "this might go away," like some other epidemic that, you know, the world has faced. for him to say, very politely,
to use the word "misleading" to her face, because it was. usually, journalistically even, the way she was questioning and pushing toward this going away was so off-base. you look for two, three sources. you look for really, really strong sources. there are no sources saying this is going to go out and away on its own. so you have to wonder what the motive is there, like a job or something. jim vandehei, i mean, donald trump often interacts with his friends on television, and tries to push for a certain theme. is it possible that he still sort of is interacting that way? >> well, i think what's interesting about this conspiracy theory is if you think about the conspiracy theories since donald trump took office, he was usually a big participant in it. right now, if you look at what dr. phil or dr. oz or some of these conservative commentators
are saying, point to donald trump. donald trump has been the one sitting at the podium saying 2.2 million people could have died. maybe it is 1.6 million people could have died. then he says the number is 200,000 to 250,000. then they're saying it's a hoax, and why is he saying, "this is what i see when i look at the evidence?" if donald trump did want to signal to them, yeah, get back to work, this is a hoax, he'd just say it. if you look at the plan he put out last night, that was a very, very conservative plan. it was differential to the governors. it's staggered and basically doing the things that the faucis of the world want him to do. whatever is happening with these doctors -- and, by the way, i talked to business leaders. i talked to fortune 500 ceos who shared this view and will talk about it in private. they believe we're overreacting. yes, it is a terrible death count, but it's not that high compared to the flu, or that high compared to car accidents. so there's definitely people out
there who sincerely believe the risk/reward, that we've erroree on this. nobody on the task force, officials are saying, "yeah, it'll dissipate quickly." we know what it is, and we know the steps we have to take. it was articulated yesterday. there's a gap between the bravado you hear from president trump in the meandering news conferences, and what they're actually doing. had he not done all the weird stuff about, "i'm the authoritarian leader and can dictate what governors can do," it was all meaningless and nonsense. he ended up doing what the constitution says he can do. he deferred to the states to let them make decisions about governance and locality. >> i'm glad you brought up the fact that the president himself talked about over 2 million
people could die if there weren't social distancing guidelines that were followed. if they didn't follow what dr. fauci and dr. birx and other medical people said. he, of course, saw what happened with boris johnson, who mocked this. went around shaking hands and almost died. ended up in intensive care. then was begging people to take this seriously. i have relatives, sadly, friends who weren't taking this seriously, because they're listening to so much of this propaganda that is deadly propaganda. it shares me to death for them. for a lot of friends and loved ones. but let's look at this chart again. i direct this to those ceos you're talking about that say, "this is just like car accidents." look at this chart. again, there's car crashes, straight line. there's the 2017/'18 flu. look how low it is. there's the 2017/'18 flu and pneumonia numbers. the '57 and '58 asian flu with
pneumonia. then ceos, look at the red line. here's the deal, we can't reopen the economy, as much as i want to reopen the economy, as much as mika wants to reopen, as much as all of our close friends who have small businesses want the economy reopened, until that line flattens out. it sure as hell would help if we actually had, jim, testing. it always goes back to testing, testing, testing. donald trump has failed miserably on testing. boris johnson failed miserably on testing. the united states and united kingdom failed miserably to testing. we said no to the world health organization when they had tests for us early on. we are in such a mess right now because of testing. jim, the president understands this. people are going to die if we go back too soon. for those ceos and small business owners, if we go back
too soon, and we get hit again, hard, and they have to close again, then it's twice as devastating if they have to reclose all over again. >> i'll say what i said the other day. put the conspiracy nuts to the side. most americans have behaved super responsibly and done what their governors told them to do. if we had enough masks and testing, people will do the right thing. they'll do their instant tests. they'll return to work. stay 6 feet apart. they'll put a mask on. we've seen it. everyone in masks, most people. you can find a couple anomalies, but most people have done the right thing. now, it really comes down towards getting testing right. do we get enough tests to enough people that are instan ttaneous and trustworthy, so we can move into a place where people can be in a workplace? in most places, it looks like we'll have enough hospital beds. over time, looks like we will
have enough ventilators when there is an outbreak, assuming you get the testing piece right. you can have some return to normality. you're not going to have concerts, probably not having football stadiums full of people this year. but the rest of the things, if you do all those other things, can happen. one of the things the president is being told by advisers is, "listen, be careful with your rhetoric here. you might be able to blame the chinese in terms of, like, who is to blame for the origination of this virus. but if you push people back, and you're the person who sat on the podium and said, i'm all powerful, and i dictated everyone should return to work, and then you see a massive death spike, it's totally on you." there's a danger in the "i'm the all powerful leader," which, by the way, is why he is doing what everyone said he should do and knew he would do. defer to the governors. some of the governors next week will start to return to work. we'll see the consequences of that. hopefully they're right, and hopefully in those regions, it
wasn't as bad as people feared, and they can do it. >> we'll see. some of those places, the president said, could open as early as this morning. places like wyoming and montana. i spoke to health experts last knights to get their takes on the guidelines. many who have been critical of the president throughout this said "there is a lot to like in this, except there's one major problem at the center of it. that is, there is no plan for testing. so how exactly do we measure if the states are ready to phase back to normal life?" yesterday in the preefi ibriefi hans nichols asked the president about testing. >> are you opening things without widespread testing? do you not have the capacity, or do you not think it is necessary? >> we have the capacity. you have states without any problem. you have states with few cases. those few cases have healed. you have states with very little death, relatively speaking. as i said, one is too many, but you have states with very little
and, frankly, they're at a point where they have almost nothing. this is a much different case than in new york or new jersey. >> joe, that's the argument from the president last night. he clearly wants to get places open quickly. as these public health experts said to me, the gaiting id inin it's the phasing, which is the right way, but you have to have data as to when the states are ready for the first phase. >> yeah. my god, john heilemann, very little death, almost nothing. it sounds like the last clip you show from february the 28th. the guy just doesn't learn. he is a day trader. he doesn't learn. again, let's -- yeah, let's reopen states that can reopen, but with no testing, there's no way that we can actually get a
better understanding of how things are going. again, he has no answer for testing. people have been hammering him on testing nonstop for, i don't know, weeks. over a month. still nothing when it comes to testing. >> he can't get it done. >> he can't do it. >> yes, i believe i've heard him get hammered on that question on this show consistently for at least a month, and maybe more. i find it just utterly baffling, how the answer could be, "we have the capacity to do the testing, but we just don't think it is necessary in some of these states because they've been lucky so far and have not had significant numbers of cases or outbreaks." i mean, if you have the capacity, why on earth would you not, in fact, want to deploy it in a wide way? i think, you know, you're right, joe. this really is the achilles heel for the president. he has overpromised on testing. the same time, he's been hammered on it by people like you and others.
people raised it over and over again. if you go back and look at the record there, we should do another calendar on this, looking at the record of the promises that have been made by the government in terms of how many tests were made, how many tas tests would be available. >> oh, my gosh. >> dozens of times. literally, i think, more than a dozen times, someone from the podium, whether the president or the vice president, has said, "we will have x number of millions of tests deployed or available by x date." every time we pass that date, and nothing like that number of tests have been available. i'm uttering befuddled by why it is the case they've continually gotten this wrong and missed the mark so many times. i'm equally befuddled that the president says, "yes, we have the capacity to do it, but we're not going to bother." it seems foolish and a recipe for disaster. what we have learned about this virus is how fast it moves. it is not going to take much in
some of these states that don't have many cases now, for there to be outbreaks that will flare up. there are going to be states that the president cares a lot about politically. when they happen, weir going to find ourselves having to go back into -- i think this is the great fear for everyone, is because of the outbreaks and resurgences in the states that are hard hit, and just on the cusp of having a handle on this problem, we'll find ourselves back in the summer again, having to go back to what we have been through for the last several weeks. that'll be good for no one. economically, not good for anyone. certainly not good politically for the president of the united states or anyone else. >> let's pray that's not going to happen, but i'm concerned it might just happen. as i said from the beginning, and a lot of people said from the beginning, this is a health care crisis. the economic crisis that is attached to the health care crisis will go away when the health care crisis goes away. when the numbers are spiking straight up, when we don't have
testing. i'm sorry to sound like a broken record, but this really is critically important. it's not the end all, be all, but it is critically important. how many times have you heard this from dr. fauci and others? we have to test. we have to be able to trace the cases. we've got to be able to treat people. we've got to be able to isolate those. the asymptomatic carriers are explosive. mika, you know, another way this is not like the flu, is that during flu season, we don't have mass graves in the bronx. >> never seen that. a mile-long stretch of land off the bronx, called hart island, has been a burial place for new york city's unclaimed dead for more than 150 years. according to the "washington post," during the coronavirus outbreak, mass grave burials for new yorkers whose families could
not be found or could not afford a private funeral have been quintup quintupled. quintupled. officials say they've grown from an average of 25 per week to 120 per week. the "post" reports that with hospitals and funeral homes overwhelmed, the office of the chief medical examiner has declared that anyone who is not claimed from a morgue in 15 days will be buried on hart island. >> mika, yesterday, we told the story about the nursing home, where an autonomous tip had officials come over. they found all of these bodies stacked up in a room. it's happening too fast. we have stories coming out of queens, new york. i mean, this is -- again, it's so interesting. willie talked to those health care providers last night. they told him what the weakness
was in the press conference. that's exactly what you told me after you watched the press conference yesterday. you said, they were the guidelines but, again, the gaping hole is testing. >> it's testing, and it is asymptomatic carriers. and it's that caveat that they put in there, that says, "anyone with underlying conditions, shelter in place." well, that's at least two people in our family, which means, can we go out? i mean, you bring it back to the people with underlying conditions, it doesn't work. ultimately, it's going to be on us and on business owners and on the governors to try and figure out how to get around this. still reopen businesses. it is dangerous. >> testing, testing, testing. still ahead on "morning joe," the top democrat in the u.s. senate, chuck schumer, is our guest. first, we know the shutdown has hit small businesses especially hard. why is the government's rescue plan benefitting the rich? nbc's stephanie rhule joins us with her analysis. that's next on "morning joe."
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enroll new ppp lenders at this time. congress is trying to add an additional $250 billion to the programs, but democrats and republicans have been stuck in negotiations. democrats are looking to expand loan access to include money for hospitals, food assistance, and state and local governments, while republicans are hoping to focus on securing more small business aid while deferring other funding debates until later. let's bring nbc news senior business correspondent and msnbc anchor, stephanie ruhle, into the conversation. stephanie, the big concern here is abuse, but also money really getting to people who need it. >> absolutely. so we can take politics out for an aside. here's where i want to walk us through this. in normal times, it makes sense to sort of optimize your tax deductions. if you run a small business, you're going to bring your accountant in, your lawyer, and
say, "what are all the deduct n deductions available to me, and how do i pay the least?" that's how people operate. here we are right now, at a time when there's emergency funding, where you should be taking the funding that you need, not what's available to you. if you and joe decided, oh, there's a food bank 5 miles away from where we live. should we head over there tonight and get the free dinners rather than go to the grocery store? no, you're not going to do that and take free food from a food bank just because you guys can. that's exactly what's happening here. remember why this program was put in place. because of all the small businesses that are forced to shut down. then pick a nail salon. forced to shut down. all those nail technicians went on unemployment. then the government realized, uh-oh, those nail technicians are on unemployment. now the nail salon could go out of business. we don't want, on the other side of corona, the businesses to not exist, then all the people will sit on unemployment forever.
let's create a program where, basically, we take all of this money, give it to these businesses that have lost enormous amounts of revenue. they pass the money on to their employees, so they don't have to fire them. then they have a little extra to pay other expenses. then they'll coast through this. that's the idea of this. great idea. now, what has happened is, any business out there with less than 500 people has said to themselves, "well, if it's available to me, i guess i should take it." if you were a law firm, you didn't need to shut down. maybe you have less than 500 people. yes, there was somewhat of an inconvenience. maybe you lost some money. if you did, you could take an sba, low interest loan out, that eventually you'd pay back. to see all of these businesses, and remember, we're going to have all their names, so i promise when we do, we're going to go through them. the fact they're taking the money is so upsetting. it's not getting to those nail salons. >> right. >> exactly. >> willie, the "new york post,"
along with what stephanie was talking about yesterday, the possibility of abuse by the rich, just like we saw in 2008, after that crash. the rich got richer. the banks made more money than ever before. nobody got sent to jail. the "new york post," 43,000 u.s. millionaires will get stimulus, $1.6 million each from the coronavirus relief act. that in the "new york post." it is absolutely obscene. >> yeah. when you have piles of money this big, when we're talking in the hundreds of billions, into $2.2 trillion, there's going to be fraud. there are sick people who are going to take advantage of that. you know, stephanie, i was thinking about all these small businesses. i happen to know one very well, that hasn't even heard back from their bank yet. they applied for ppe and haven't heard back on their application. they're ones applying today, and they'll hear there's no money left in the fund. these are small businesses that,
even if they bet the money, steph, and you can help me through this a little bit, is it covers payroll for two months, plus 25% to deal with rent and utilities, things like that. the question is, even if you get the money, if you're one of the few that get the money, what happens after two months? we're looking at a horizon through the summer, and the money runs out. >> that's the big issue. that's actually why you're seeing quite a few restaurants not apply for the loan. they know this sithing is only o months. they don't want to be faced two months from now with everything shut down, then they'll fire the employees over again. if you're one of the businesses that took the money and didn't need it, because you don't actually have to shut down, then again, this is just a nice cushion. you've got to ask yourself, when you go to cvs right now, if you can buy 50 rolls of toilet paper, you're not. when you see the person who is, you're kind of publicly shaking them. we're realizing, that's not the right thing to do. don't take it because i can.
here, businesses think they can do it in the dark of night. nobody is watching. i'm just going to take the hand sanitizer. taking all the hand sanitizer could be killing people's businesses. >> stephanie ruhle, thank you very, very much for coming on. we'll see you at 9:00 a.m., right after "morning joe." coming up, a meat plant in south dakota is the country's biggest coronavirus hot spot. we'll talk to the "new york times" reporter who is covering that story, straight ahead. how about no no uh uh, no way come on, no no n-n-n-no-no only discover has no annual fee on any card.
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welcome back to "morning joe. democrats in several key races have raised more money in the first months of the year than their republican opponents. "new york times" reporting in states like kentucky, south carolina, kentucky, and maine, democratic candidates have topped and almost doubled the fundraising of republicans. that's according to new federal election commission filings. in kentucky, for example, mitch mcconnell's democratic opponent, amy mcgrath, raised more than $5 million more than the senate majority leader in the first quarter of 2020. both have roughly the same amount of cash on hand. in arizona, democrat mark kelly raised more than $4.6 million more than incumbent republican senator, mcsally. in south carolina, senator lindsey graham's democratic challenger, jamie harrison, with a haul of more than $7 million, raised nearly 30% more than the
$5.7 million graham did. even though many republican candidates have more cash on hand, the surge in fundraising suggests a new dynamic in some 2020 down ballot races. john heilemann, what do the numbers tell you? you can look specifically at kentucky. there are some people wondering if mcgrath actually has a chance to unseat the senator majority leader, who can raise a ton of money, and does have the powerful incumbency. >> yeah. willie, i don't think mitch mcconnell is going to lose in 2020 because of lack of funds. that's the one thing mitch mcconnell always has, is plenty of money down the line. kentucky is the state -- you know, because mcconnell's approval rating in kentucky is always low, when he runs for re-election, you look at his numbers and think he's vulnerable, and somehow, he manages to win. i think democrats are obviously more focused than ever on trying to beat mitch mcconnell. it'll be an uphill battle. kentucky is a very, very red
state, as is south carolina, where jamie harrison raised a ton of money in his race against lindsey graham. compelling candidate. the state is still a republican state. my big question right now is, right now, we have these numbers on some of these individual senate races, where democrats look good. the number we're still waiting for, willie, is the number for the democratic national committee on the whole, and from vice president biden. earlier this week, and i'll look at my note. the trump campaign and rnc put their first quarter number out. the number was $212 million. first quarter. $63 million in the month of march, which is a record-shattering number. the rnc and the trump campaign are breaking all fundraising records. including ones obama set in the 2012 cycle. yet, we sit here waiting right now for the biden campaign, the dnc to report its overall number. that is going to be a very important thing. joe biden had a great week this week.
unambiguously great. one thing, i think, is causing people who are on the biden team and affiliated democrats some concern is whether there's going to be a giant mismatch between the fundraising that the president racked up and the rnc racked up and where the vice president stands financially, along with the dnc, when we get the numbers. a meat processing plant in south dakota has become the biggest single source hot spot of coronavirus cases in the u.s. according to the "new york times," more than 640 cases have been linked to smithfield foods pork processing plant in sioux falls. the plant, which employs thousands of refugees from around the world, announced on sunday, which shut down, weeks after confirming its first case. now, a team of health experts are working with state officials to understand the scope of the outbreak and figure out a plan for a safe reopening. it comes as south dakota's governor has resisted a
statewide lockdown. union leaders say the facility's owners waited too long to introduce safety measures and, instead, encouraged employees to focus on meeting the demand for their products that has surged amid the pandemic. >> again, here's a problem, mika, in red state america. all the places that i've grown up and lived in red state america, most of them, yeah, all of them, i guess, trump states. health care facilities had been absolutely shattered the last five, six, seven years by cuts to medicaid for rural health care, for senior citizens' facilities. we see it in florida with unemployment claims that have spiked. what we've seen is over the past five, six, seven years, again, republican governance has slashed all unemployment
benefits in florida to such a degree that we hear time and time again, people are calling, as dr. dave reported, will call hundreds of times and never get through to anybody. >> joining us now, national immigration reporter for the "new york times," kaitlin dickerson, who has been covering this story, along with "morning joe" chief medical correspondent dr. dave campbell. kaitlin, i'll start with you. there's so many different potential problems attached to this. if you could maybe talk about them. everything from impact on our food supply to so many of these workers are very, very sick. >> that's right. i think, you know, to wrap your mind around the scope of what's happened, or how the outbreak could have gotten as bad as it did in south dakota at the smithfield plant, you have to picture this facility. it is eight stories tall. you have 3,700 employees. it operates 24/7. employees told me about having christmas meals around the lunch
table there. that's right, most of them are immigrants and refugees. about 85% from all over the world. they condition afford to stay home from work, including when they are sick. i think that begins to give you a sense that many of them are working within an arm's reach of one another. you can reach out and touch the person next to you. they also pointed to the fact that when they began to be tested, there was a 72-hour delay between the time they took a test for coronavirus and the test came back. during that time, people continued to show up for work. we think that's probably how it spread as quickly as it did. this is a facility that produces 130 million servings of food a week. a significant percentage of pork within the united states. you're right, when the facility shut down, as ceo and president of smithfield did say, the food supply could be affected. >> caitlin, it is willie geist. there has been focused, largely because of the plant you've been reported on so well, on the state of south dakota.
the president yesterday said, "we're going to open states like south dakota, with small populations spread out over a lot of space." he talked about montana, wyoming, and north dakota. what has been the impact inside the state? we know the governor has been slow to act and reluctant to put in stay at home orders in the state of south dakota. now that plant, as you say, has been closed, of course. the impact of that plant on the larger state of south dakota. >> i think south dakota is completely overwhelmed, and that's why you have a team of researchers from the cdc who had to travel there and investigate what happened at the facility. i think, too, as i mentioned, there's this three-day delay that most of the smithfield workers had to wait in order to find out whether they had coronavirus or not. that was devastating. they all said, if we could have had more testing, and we could have had test results come in more quickly, we could have prevented this from happening. you know, a single worker just has contact with so many other
people over the course of one shift. in a place like smithfield, which is the biggest employer in sioux falls. the next biggest employers are the hospitals, places where there's so much contact happening in a context of a place that does not have enough testing and that does not have enough support, to be able to help people sick with coronavirus. >> dr. dave, this story really reflects the difficult balancing act that we have to do as a society, that governors have to do, that local officials have to do, that medical officials and medical advisers have to take. you actually have the people that run the plant saying that the food supply could actually be endangered because of a shortage. if more of these plants shut down, you have to balance that versus this outbreak which, of course, will not only shatter the health care systems in this state but also the economy.
it is just a tough balancing act, and we saw it yesterday. as mika said, you can tell people they need to isolate in their homes if they have underlying conditions. if you have somebody in your home with an underlying condition, you can't go to work. you'll come back and you may be asymptomatic. it's just, again, a lot of balancing acts we have to do as a society. >> joe, caitlin pointed out something, i think, punctuates the whole issue. she mentioned that one worker at the plant is in contact with so many others. i would say that all it takes is one worker who brought the virus into the plant, especially during that asymptomatic phase, that could pass that virus to others. dr. fauci has said how effective this virus is at being transmitted. it is very contagious. if you take a plant, like caitlin described, it is like a ship, a nursing home.
everybody is squeezed together. the virus can go to another person, two people, four people. next thing you know, by the time somebody got sick and went for testing, and then had to wait two or thee dree days, imagine number in that eight-story facility, of people squeezed together, enjoying company, having meals together. 640 people have been affected by that one plant. i think it speaks to the larger point that's been made over and over again, including by dr. fauci and everyone. massive testing, daily testing. >> this is the difference between the flu and the coronavirus, dave. whether you're talking about this plant in south dakota, whether you're talking about the "ussroosevelt," it spreads more quickly than the flu. it spreads so much more quickly than any other disease. dr. fauci called it, quote, unprecedented. that's the real challenge, isn't
it, dave? >> it is. and my point to everyone must be that until we have the testing that we hope we will have, we are all, as individuals, responsible for making decisions for ourselves, our family, and for physicians, for our patients and em plofor employers, their employees. we have to protect each other until the testing is available. the virus is not going away. it is not going to be like sars, that disappeared. apparently, it is not going to disappear. if we do get a vaccine, it is months and months down the road. and they aren't certain we will have a vaccine. >> dr. dave campbell, thank you so much. "new york times" caitlin dickerson, thank you for your reporting. ahead, eugene robinson sums up the president's response to
the pandemic in two words. quote, he failed. we'll read from gene's column in the "new york times" when he joins us ahead. plus, peter baker's last two headlines in the "new york times" illustrate the whiplash coming from the white house. on monday, trump was claiming authority, absolute authority over the governors. yesterday, he acknowledged the power is theirs. we'll talk about that backtrack next on "morning joe." ♪
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dr. fauci, on the question of a vaccine, we don't have a vaccine for sars. they got close in mice. we don't have a vaccine for hiv. life did go on. right? so the idea that we're definitely going to have a vaccine, we didn't really approach much else in the same way as we're pegging going back to normal with a vaccine. did we? >> well, no, but laura, this is
different. hiv aids is entirely different. we don't have a vaccine for hiv aids, but we have spectacularly effective treatment. people who, invariably, would have died years ago, right now, are leading essentially normal lives. sars is a different story. sars disappeared. we developed a vaccine. we were in the process of going through the various phases. we showed it was safe. we showed it induced a good response. then sars disappeared. we didn't need to develop a vaccine for sars. i think it's a little bit misleading maybe to compare what we're going through now with hiv or sars. they're really different. >> but we don't know. this could disappear. i mean, sars did pretty much disappear. this could, as well, correct? >> yeah, yeah. you know, anything could, laura, but i have to tell you, the degree of efficiency of transmissibility of this is really unprecedented in anything
i've seen. it is an extraordinarily efficient virus, in transmitting from one person to another. >> dr. fauci -- >> viruses don't just disappear. >> 250 people a year die from poverty. the poverty line is getting such that more and more people are going to fall below that because the economy is crashing around us. and they're doing that because people are dying from the coronavirus. i get that. but, look, the fact of the matter is, we have people dying -- 45,000 people a year die from automobile accidents. 480,000 from cigarettes. 360,000 a year from swimming pools. we don't shut the country down for that. but, yet, we're doing it for this? >> i'll tell ya, schools are a very appetizing opportunity. i just saw a nice piece arguing that the opening of schools may only cost us 2% to 3% in terms of total l momortality. any life is a life lost. but to get every child back into a school where they're safely
educated, being fed, and making the most of their lives, with a theoretical risk on the back side, may be a trade-off some folks would consider. >> no. >> nope. >> no, no. not the death of 2% to 3% of children. 2% to 3% of 320 million people. but that's an argument that's been made. you heard dr. oz make it. he later backtracked. you heard dr. phil make it. you have heard steven moore, one of the president's informal economic advisers, make it. you've heard larry kudlow make it. one of the president's top economic advisers make it. you -- you've heard trumpaganpr make it. it is one thing to ask dr. fauci questions. might this go away? it's okay to say, "shouldn't we go back," ask those questions and stuff.
it's totally fine. in fact, that's what people should be doing. push the doctors. see what it is. what we heard when dr. fauci was pushed, he said, "this is entirely different." he said, "this is unprecedented." he said, "this won't just disappear." but, willie, then you have dr. oz, and then you have dr. phil, and you have so many other people going out there, saying that this is going -- it is just like car accidents. it's just like cigarettes. or it's just like swimming pools. let me show you this chart that erick erickson, again, tweeted out yesterday, to say, "this is not the flu." he said, "i'm a conservative. i've caught a lot of garbage, but this is the flu." erick has known people who had this. he knows also -- he talked about a nurse that was a big trump supporter, who got off facebook
yesterday because she was so disappointed that all of her friends were trying to dismiss this. look at the car crashes. look at the line there. look at the line for the flu. they're consistent. now look at covid-19. it is skyrocketing up. again, as we said last hour, the very people who were dismissing concerns about this, from medical providers, scientists, the media, as a, quote, hoax, because they said it was overblown, they're the same people, like donald trump, who said, "yeah, we saw this before anybody else." now, they're the same people who are, once again, saying, "ignore science. ignore medicine. let's go back. 2% to 3%, you know." the party of life is suddenly fine with very high mortality rate. i guess it's getting in the way of, you know -- taking care of people's health is getting in the way of the bottom line. >> we have a very smart
audience, so i hesitate to insult their intelligence by reminding them that the car accident statistics should not be compared to the covid-19 statistics. the reason that people are staying indoors, the reason we have stay at home orders, is because, unlike car accidents and drownings in swimming pools, covid-19 is very, very con contagio contagious. that's part of what dr. fauci tried to lay out on the same show where dr. oz later appeared last night. the problem is, you can write these guys off. the problem is, they have huge followings. dr. oz and dr. phil both have shows with millions of viewers. fox news, those programs, obviously, are very highly rated. millions of viewers. so when those prominent doctors go on tv and say these things, a lot of people listen. that's reflected, by the way, in polling, that shows who is taking this seriously and who is not. as you say, it is the impulse of the president, as well, to get people back to work, perhaps sooner than they should be getting back to work for their own safety. are they playing into ratings?
are they being tv performers, as you said? dr. oz tried to walk back his statement last night. there have been other doctors early in the crisis, not even that early, but the last month, tv doctors who said, "oh, this is press-induced panic." coming out later and apologizing, saying "well, we got it wrong." the words you say matter. you have huge audiences who listen to you, and you have to be responsible. that's why we try to have on this show and bring to our audience actual doctors who specialize in this stuff. public health experts and officials, epidemiologists, who know exactly what they're talking about, and are not there to play to an audience. they're not there for tv ratings. >> yeah. mika, it is a balancing act. we have to balance, again -- our friends with small businesses. this is what governors and the society has to balance. small business owners, people that work at large corporations, people who work everywhere. people who are entrepreneurs.
people who are struggling just to get by. we have to -- that is what we as a society have to balance, along with the concerns, the medicine concerns. unfortunately, i have a good example of somebody who has friends and loved ones who buy into the garbage that dr. phil and dr. oz and others have been propagating for too long. it is a message that any medical doctor, like dr. fauci, any public health official that really knows the numbers, will agr agree, actually, with what erick erickson was talking about yesterday. what any nurse on the front lines is talking about. what any doctor on the front lines in emergency rooms is talking about. like dr. fauci said last night, this is a pandemic like nothing he's seen before. along with joe, willie, and me, we have chief white house correspondent for the "new york times," peter baker.
pulitzer prize-winning columnist, from "the post," y eugene robinson. and jon meacham, nbc news and msnbc contributor. you know, this plan to reopen the country, again, a little bit like the wizard of oz. it is not really reopening. the white house unveiled new guidelines yesterday, aimed to get the u.s. back to work. under the first phase of the plan, large venues, like restaurants, movie theaters, places of worship, and sporting venues, would be able to reopen under certain conditions. schools, day care centers, and bars will remain closed. >> let me stop you right there. this is meaningless. >> it is. >> jon meacham, it is meaningless because two days after talking like mussolini, saying he had complete, total
control, "i have total control," now he admits he does not have any control. it is going to be up to the governors. so they're putting out guidelines and saying, "these facilities can open under certain, you know, rules and regulations." no. i mean, the president has completely punted to the states now. which, again, two days ago, he said he had complete control oth over the states. i'm not sure what it means. he said he had total authority. the only thing i know is that donald trump is, as i say, a day trader. whatever he said yesterday, he will say something different today. >> no, he lives in a different reality from all of us. the tragedy of it is that what he does affects our reality, fundamentally. who knew that donald trump would end up making al hague look like a strict constitutionalist, in
terms of declarations of great executive authority. one of the pernicious things about this is you can't take what he says seriously. because he doesn't take it seriously. and pre-pandemic, it was something we could endure. it was a necessary evil because of the 2016 election. a lot of us believed, you know, you ride these waves of fury, and you try to get through it so you can prevail in the end. given these numbers, and given the depression level, economic fallout, it's very hard to see how his character has not become part of our national destiny, in a way that is helping exacerbate
a situation. people are dying. the economic futures, can he talks about with some feeling, interestingly. the economic futures of so many people are so bleak. you know, we're going to be at depression level numbers very soon. a quarter of the country's men are out of work in the winter of 1933. fundamental question about democratic capitalism versus, you mentioned mussolini, totalitarianism and communism. one of the big generational issues here, going forward, is going to be, i think, a starker divide than at any time, certainly since vietnam and maybe before, in terms of people who have faith in the american system. because if you are a millennial, you've had 2008. you've had donald trump. now you've had this. and you have to wonder what the long-term impact in terms of people's investment in the country is going to be.
>> well, i said it before the pandemic, and i'll say it right now, the impact is going to be that the republican party is going to lose a generation for the next 20 years. we saw it when ronald reagan got elected in 1980. it fundamentally changed american politics. i've been saying this since 2017, the republican party, if it blinded followed donald trump, is going to lose a generation. it is. i've got to say, right now, as far as the pandemic goes, you know, jon meacham is so right when he says that donald trump lives in his own reality. unfortunately, that warped view shapes all of our reality. let's move from the health care discussion to the economic discussion. the problem here is because he is a day trader. because, as i've been saying, i think, for at least a month, you can't have a patchwork approach to a pandemic. because he changes his mind every day or two.
it means that our friends, our small business owner friends, other people that want to get back to work are going to have a rougher run of it. because the president just won't plan ahead. just like in february, we have the clip february 28th, where he said, "this is magically going to go away." because he believed that, pause because he believed the end of january, i think january 24th, that the chinese were transparent, and the chinese were doing a great job, and he thanked president xi on behalf of the american people, he wasn't planning for testing. >> that's it. >> that was january 24th. because he still believed the end of february, 26th, i think it was, because he believed the end of february that it was going away, he didn't plan for testing. right? we're into march. then we're into april. still no testing plan, mika. >> zero. >> as you said, there is,
without testing, there is no hope of effectively opening the economy. >> well, now -- >> in a way that's going to help the americans who need it the most. >> -- he's sending people back into the economy, back into the world, saying "we're starting our life again." this is what the president said yesterday evening, "we are starting our life again." no, actually, people are still dying. we're at 32,000 people dying and counting. we have numbers that we don't even know about. we have people being discovered in rooms in nursing homes, dead. we're not starting our life again. we're continuing to deal with death, as we look at this. these guidelines, i know the scientists are trying their best, but now, it's like legal lingo. you've got this massive caveat. the guidelines say they're designed to mitigate the risk of resurgence and protect the most vulnerable. hours before the plan was released, trump spoke with governors from across the country, telling them they'd be able to make their own decisions about timing.
saying, quote, you're going to call your own shots." we're not starting our life again. both dr. deborah birx and dr. anthony fauci stressed that the guidelines did not have a timeline attached. >> we did not put a timeline on any of the phases. we want the governors, with the data that they have, community by community, to be setting up those timelines. >> light switch on and off is the exact opposite of what you see here, which is a gradual gradation. with the first thing, and only thing in mind, as the health people here, my colleagues who are physicians, scientists, or public health officials, the predominant and completely driving element we put into this was the safety and the health of the american public. >> boy, what an important voice. they both are. >> yeah. they're heros. they're navigating a lot. president trump's plan does not
include a national testing strategy. many cannot understand why he won't do that. why he won't invoke the dpa and get this going on a streamlined, national level. he said it would be left up to the states, with the federal government conducting oversight. it is very patchwork, peter baker. i also look at, again, the phases of this massive reopening, where our lives are starting back again. phase one, all vulnerable individuals should continue to shoelt shelter in place. can't leave their homes. members of households with vulnerable individuals should be aware they carry the virus back home. vulnerable individuals and families of vulnerable individuals should shelter in place. that does not sound like a reopening. that sounds almost like a legal caveat. if you go out, you could bring the virus back home to your vulnerable family member. in some ways, it feels like
we're where we were two days ago. >> well, what the president did here was marry a plan that is closer to what the public health experts wanted with rhetoric that he wants, telling the country things are getting back to normal, right? he uses expansive language. we're going to restart the economy. it is going to boom again. we're going to get right back to where we were. if you look at the plan, as you were just saying, it's not the plan, i think, some people feared a couple days ago, where it would be may 1st, we're all getting back into the stream of things. it's not, "everybody pack the churches on easter." it is a plan that recognizes it'll take time, especially in places like new york, new jersey. places that have been particularly hard-hit. they're not coming back may 1st or anywhere near may 1st. if you're in new york or new jersey under the plan, you're not coming back probably six, seven, eight weeks, at the best. while public health experts won on that, there is no date, which they didn't want in there, what they didn't win on, where
there's obviously a big question mark, is this idea of surveillance testing, as you said. a lot of public health experts will tell you, you can't effectively reopen until you have a much wider testing capacity. not just for people sick, but people who aren't sick. to see if we can find out how much this has really spread within our society. we don't know that. dr. birx yesterday, we asked her about that. she talked about targeted surveillance testing, at specific places it seems most useful. like nursing homes, the less than comprehensive testing schemes that a hot of people have been hoping for. >> willie? >> gene, on the question of a national testing program, the health minister of germany this morning said, quote, we have it under control. which means they'll start to open some small shops in germany. they'll send kids back to school on may 4th. the way they're doing it is
through testing. they had a national testing program. they get out 560,000 tests a week in germany. isolation, obviously, a month of isolation, complete national lockdown, combined with testing, got them where they are today. they said it is fragile. as they send people back out, they'll make 50 million masks a week as a kucountry so people cover up and don't spread it again. there is a national push there. it is based in testing. that's how one country, i understand it's not as big as the united states. 83 million people in germany. a pretty darn big country now getting back to life because of a national testing program and a national lockdown. >> yeah. for the love of all that's holy, testing. testing is what we need. you know, i wrote a column three weeks ago, saying that testing, the lack of testing was the original sin of the trump administration, in its approach to the pandemic, and that
remains true today. it is astonishing that the president could announce his reopening plan and not include widespread, surveillance testing, so that we can get to the point where germany is. so we can get to the point where we have an idea of how widespread the infection is, how quickly it is being transmitted. we get our number down, the number of people, someone with the virus transmits it to. it is still way too high to think about opening the country. you know, there are occasions when an underestimated leader rises to the occasion during a crisis. this is not one of them. president trump has shrunk away from this, from the occasion, from the job. he's become smaller and pettier
and less relevant. frankly, it is left up to the governors now and these sort of consortiums of states formed on the east coast, the west coast, and now in the midwest, to figure this out. and to institute the kind of testing we need in order to get the economy back open. >> peter, doctors fauci and birx have done a good job of walking the line between presenting data, presenting science, doing the right thing based on what they know as doctors, and sort of assuaging the ego of the man they're working for in donald trump. with all that in mind, how did this program, the guidelines that were introduced yesterday, how did it come together? where they knew they had to put health first, the health of the public, but also, in some ways, satisfy the impulses of the president, who wants to get the country back to work? >> yeah, i think the president wanted to be able to say, "here's a plan to get back to work," almost regardless of what
it said. obviously, he had some, you know, oversight of it. in fact, what he was doing was accepting what public health experts were telling them, opposed to monday, when he was saying, "i have all authority. i will tell us to get back. we can get back starting may 1." a lot of states, obviously, are not ready to get back may 1. you will have a patchwork in this. there will be states that will probably get back, or try to get back, to some semblance of normal starting in the next few weeks. maybe they're in a better position. the president has clearly given a green light, in effect, through this plan, to a lot of states in the south and the west, probably run addy republicby republican governors, more sympathetic and friendly with the president, who will take his lead. cuomo in new york. inslee in washington state. whitmer in michigan, they'll probably decide for themselves. the guidelines aren't that different than the criteria they're talking about using. they're not going to follow the president's direction. they'll make their case by case
decision as their states and regions, you know, see fit. you'll have this patchwork. i think the question is whether or not the president will be encouraging states that maybe ought not to be quick to come back, to come back faster than they should without the surveillance testing. >> peter baker, thank you very much for your reporting this morning. coming up, max rose has his hands full as a new yorker who has been dealing with the trauma on his community. as a congressman, he's been dealing with the economic fallout. as a member of the national guard, he was just deployed to the front lines of the fight. we'll talk with him about all of it, just ahead on "morning joe." how do you get skin happy 24/7?
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♪ in new york ♪ concrete jungle where dreams are made of ♪ ♪ there's nothing you can't do ♪ now you're in new york welcome back to "morning joe." those are nurse s in the bronx, celebrating each time a patient recovers after a covid diagnosis. as of yesterday, over 28,000 people have recovered from that hospital and now is hope. joining us is the ceo of moniphore, 200 out patients in the bronx, westchester, and the lower hudson valley. thank you very much for joining us this morning. we'll be talking with you about what is working, and also the continued trauma that front line workers are facing. first, i'm just wondering,
pulling back 20,000 feet, in your estimate, with your experti expertise, do you think conceding to the states on figuring out testing is the fastest and best way to get uniform testing across the country? >> thank you, mika, for having me on. i think that testing is needed to combat this virus. it is very difficult for individual hospitals and individual entities to mount the level of testing that is needed, i think, as you've said before on your shows. there's a supply chain issue. there is a production issue. then there is a dissemination issue. i believe that the most efficient way ought to be a nationally coordinated approach.
of course, it will be implemented locally. we've done that at montefiore. we had to ramp up our testing. hundreds and hundreds of tests a day. we run spot problem into the pr supplies, equipment, and reagents. a more coordinated approach would be very helpful. >> now, to the front lines, as it pertains to supplies and testing and trauma to front line workers. how are doctors and nurses in your system fairing? are they still at the point where they don't have what they need and are overwhelmed by the workload, the amount of patients coming in? >> well, there's nothing normal about what we're doing now. this is literally a war zone. we've got people coming into work, our people come into work,
go into buildings with hundreds of patients who have covid-19. they spend 12 to 16 hours there, breathing that air. people are spending weeks in hotel rooms so that they don't infect their families. we have nurses and doctors who sleep in their cars in their driveway at home to protect their babies. so it's really unimaginable, the sacrifices and acts of selflessness, compassion, and courage. our people put themselves in harm's way every day, mika, to save the lives of others. i couldn't be more proud of the work that they're doing. supplies and protective -- >> dr. -- >> -- equipment remains a daily
challenge, however. >> doctor, it is willie geist. sorry to jump in on you there. i want to echo what you're saying. as a new york and american, thank you for you, your hospitals, your doctors, nurses, what you're doing. you make us proud for all the reasons you laid out there. i'm interested in your point of view. we do hear from political leaders who say, "okay, there's good news here. hospitalizations are down. the death numbers are up though." from your vantage point, where are we right now in this crisis? you can just speak about it from your hospital's perspective and the new york city perspective. should we be optimistic about where we are? are we seeing a light at the end of the tunnel, as we've heard from other national doctors? >> yes. willie, let me explain it this way. so in all of montefiore, on march 11th, we had two patients with covid-19 in our beds. by march 31st, we had 2,000. that was how fast the doors were
getting blown off the building. so it's levelled off now. the last several days, the curve has flattened, but it is at a very high number. we're stretched to the max. we have 200% more patients in critical care than we've ever had before. so the numbers have flattened, but at a very high level. and there is reason for hope. the mitigation is working. if we continued at the slope this was going before, it would have been an utter disaster by now. >> doctor, i want to ask you about a drug, a clinical trial you're participating in. gilead is the company. remdesivir is the drug. it seems to treat them and get them out of the hospitals
quicker. what are you seeing from this drug in your patients? >> thank you . so we are one of the handful of nih sites that are going what's called a double-blind, randomized, clinical trial of this drug. what it means -- and, by the way, that is the gold standard in scientific clinics. what it means though is we don't know which patient is getting the drug and which patient is getting the placebo. everything looks the same. the patients are randomly assigned. we get the drugs from the nih and the placebo. all the data go back to the nih. until it is unmasked, we won't know what the outcome is. but that is the gold standard for establishing proof of efficacy in a clinical setting. >> all right. the president and ceo of
montefiore medicine, doctor, thank you so much for coming on the show. we really hope you can come back and keep us updated. thank you. jon meacham, if you heard that interview, and this is a doctor on the front lines. he runs 11 hospitals, a system of hospitals. he's tapped into what his people are going through. he describes his hospitals as a war zone. his people are in harm's way every day when they go to work. he does wish that the president would nationalize the testing program. frustrated that testing is still patchwork. supplies are still a desperate issue for his front line workers. the president last night had these positive statements. "we're starting our life again. we're beginning going to have a reopening." i'm wondering about leadership, watching the moment. should leadership be aspirational? is there a parallel here?
>> you know, i was thinking about the night lyndon johnson became president, the day of the assassination in dallas. he was in bed talking to his ai aides. he said, "we're going to pass the civil rights bill, and i'm not going to change a comma." one of the aides said, "but, mr. president, you have an election coming up. maybe we should wait." he said, "what the hell is the presidency for, if not to do what other people might not do?" why would you seek this job? why would you want to become, in many ways, the focus of the hopes and fears of the nation, if you would not use it for the greater good? the model here is the marshall plan, the manhattan project, the pol polio, we could spend the rest of the day talking about analogies. it requires something essential. it requires putting the state
above the self, if you are in that position. a common good opposed to an individual high through a day, of wanting to be praised, wanting to be loved, wanting to be thanked because you are working hard. george h.w. bush used to say, "nobody wants to hear the president of the united states say, "oh, woe is me." you do the job. you're at the highest point on the mountain." i don't think this president is capable of that, but that's what we need. that's absolutely essential, it seems to me. >> so, actually, good timing to mention your new podcast, "hope through history." i guess the question is, where in history are we looking to draw hope? >> well, i'm doing this with cadence 13, a bunch of podcast geniuses. looking at five moments, the first 100 days, 1932 and '33
where fdr said, we need a bold spirit of experimentation. we try a method. if it fails, admit it tranfrank by try another. churchill in may 1940, nobody knew if he'd succeed. he had a courage, yet he cooperated. very smart. the search for the polio vaccine. the influenza pandemic of 100 years ago. the most interesting is the cuban missile crisis. john kennedy, a young president, had screwed up at the bay of pigs. consulted with eisenhower. consulted, learned on the job, and cut to october 1962. we're at the most dangerous moment in human history, it's been called. he was able to manage his way through that crisis, not least because he was open to fact, open to acknowledging mistakes, and he was willing to learn on the job.
that's what our greatest presidents do. that's what this one seems to willfully refuse to do. >> yeah. jon meacham, thank you very much. willie? yeah, there is a push now for physicians assistants nationwide to be able to test, diagnosis, and treat covid-19 patients, in order to relieve strain on doctors. because of laws in many states, they must be supervised. as a result, many physicians assistants are actually being furloughed when their skills could be used to help. let's turn now to the director of advanced practice providers at chicago's rush university medical center, jennifer, who practicing vascular surgery. also an assistant professor in the department of physician assistant studies. thanks for being with us this morning. explain, because i don't know a lot of people even can identify what exactly a physician assistant does, but why they could be critically helpful in the middle of this pandemic.
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welcome back to "morning joe." we have a soup cans and the string connected. let's go back to the director of advanced providers at chicago's rush university medical center. jennifer is joining us. apologies for the connection there. i started to ask you about how critical physician assistants are in all of this and whoi you why you'd like to see them unleashed. explain a little bit if you would. >> yeah, since the beginning, pas have been on the front lines of the pandemic. they're one of the most
versatile and flexible health care professions that exist today. they're one of the groups of health care professionals that take care of patients from start to finish. they're putting patients on ventila ventilators. they're diagnosing them. they're taking care of them every single day, trying to get them out of the hospital. unfortunately, due to a lot of bureaucratic red tape, a lot of laws that exist and have been in existence for over 50 years, pas have their hands tied. a lot of them are sitting at home, not able to take care of these patients. they're going to be essential in the surges that are starting to happen. we need all hands on deck. pas are one of those providers that can take care of the patients on the front lines. >> so, jennifer, what would that look like? does that help with testing? what other areas would benefit from basically unleashing, as i said, physician assistants? >> yeah. so important. pas have the ability to move to all different specialties, as
well as all different locations, to help with testing, help with patients in the intensive care unit, to help in the emergency rooms. what we need, and what we're asking, is all states and even the federal government sign executive orders and remove restrictions and barriers to practice. we're living in a battle zone right now, and any day from one day to the next we go from, you know, five patients to hundreds and thousands of patients. we need to be able to move pas where they're needed. unfortunately, because of these outdated laws, we're not able to mobile i mobilize and move them across the country or just in your different local areas. in some rural communities that i think will be hit hard by this, sometimes the only person available is a pa, and we're really going to need governors to sign these executive orders so that pas can take care of the patients that they need to
during this difficult time. >> we should point out that new york governor andrew cuomo did exactly what you are describing, and he signed an executive order. there are about 17,000 pas in the state of new york, giving them flexibility the things you are talking about. jennifer, more broadly, what are you hearing from pas inside of these hospitals? what do they need? what does it look like for them right now? >> of course we need more ppe, we need more lab testing, we need more assistance. but i want to reiterate, the most essential thing that we need right now is the ability to take care of these patients. i have pas that -- i'm a director of advanced practice, and so i have 400 -- i'm lucky and have 400 pas and nurse practitioners i can deploy all over the health care system but i need more. i have pas sitting at home that call me and tell me, "i want to come help," and unfortunately i
don't have the ability to do that. but states like illinois -- i'm sorry, like new york and others that have signed these waivers have pas from other states going to their areas to help during this pandemic. it is going to be essential that we have that. that's what keeps me up at night. this is going to be a marathon, not a sprint. we have a long way to go, and we're going to need these health care providers such as pas to take care of all of these patients that are still so sick in the hospital and so many not making it out of there. we need all of the pas that we can to fight this war. >> well, let's hope all of the governors are hearing you this morning and will take action. jennifer orozco, the director of advanced practice providers at rush university medical center in chicago. thanks so much for being with us this morning. we appreciate it. mika. thank you, willie. joining us now a member of the house homeland security and veterans affairs committees,
democratic congressman max rose of new york. he is a veteran of the war in afghanistan and a recipient of the bronze star and purple heart, and he returned from a two-week deployment with the national guard to assist in the coronavirus response. it gives you a lot of different angles given your position. >> yes. >> -- as to look at, you know, what is at the heart of the matter of this, what is needed, and also i guess i would like to start, max, with you responding to the president wanting to reopen the country. >> sure. >> having this multi-phased plan but, again, not stepping in on testing on a nationalized level like i asked our last guest. >> that's true. >> is that the best way to streamline and get testing to the american people? >> well, thank you so much again for having me. let me first just say this about the experience that i just came out of, spending two weeks standing up a covid-only
facility in new york city. my service just now pales in comparison though to what i saw from our frontline medical professionals. you know, there was a doctor there who had lost family members. he also had family members who were sick in the icu, and he was still doing 18 hours a day. nurses, who hadn't even seen their loved ones, their children for over a month because they didn't want to get them sick, and they were still driving on. you know, i think about our last huddle right before we saw our first patient. we stood up this facility in six days, and the soldiers who were there in their own uniform applauded the nurses and the doctors in their uniform because they are the frontline medical professionals. so we bring this full circle to your question, because it is those folks who show us what our true potential is. this president, his team, they have a point in terms of a regional opening of the country.
they have a point that there are roles for the governors in terms of setting specific policies for their states and coordinating with other governors. but here is what they're missing, is that there are only specific things that the united states of america -- not individual states -- can accomplish, and testing is front and center there. let's remove the mystery from what a test -- what goes into the testing. it is a swab, it is a vial, it is a little alcohol pad. they do the test on someone and they send it to a lab, and that lab has equipment and reagents. that's all this is. but just like with ppe, the united states government has to step in and scale up production exponentially. you know, the united states of america was the only one that could send a man to the moon, that could win world war ii, win the cold war. it wasn't states and counties and cities. this is the same exact thing. we have to scale up testing, and
then we can open this economy back up. >> is the president foregoing his duty here? is that what you are saying? >> no. look, this is not a matter of duty. what we're talking about here though is getting the job done. there are very -- this is operational, and we are at war. you've had several people on your show just today who have described this as a war zone, and the president is the commander in chief. so nothing would make me happier than to see him step up, assume the full authorities that he has at his disposal as the commander in chief to win this war. that requires us to dramatically scale up production of ppe and testing equipment to include antibody testing, which is absolutely going to be critical. you know, if we do not protect
our frontline medical staff, it does not matter how much equipment we have. the only thing that is holding us back on staten island, for instance, in my congressional district is medical staffing. that is what holds people back right now, and we have got to protect them with ppe. states and cities shouldn't be competing against each other, and we are going to see the exact same dynamic with testing unless the federal government steps in. it is actually quite simple. >> hey, congressman. it is willie geist. good to see you as always. >> hey, willie. how are you? good to see you. >> glad to see you on the front lines of this fight and coming back and telling us about it. i want to ask you a question that was a hypothetical i asked question to vice president biden because he is not currently sitting in office, which is what he would say to somebody who is watching what is happening in the country right now and saying, i'm losing my job, my small business has closed, i'm having trouble putting food on the table. for you it is not hypothetical,
i'm sure it is real as you walk around staten island. you have people who say, "congressman, i get it, this thing is bad but my livelihood is going down the drain, i have to get help and open my business." what do you say to your constituents that might put that question to you? >> well, a few things. first of all we feel your frustration when you -- it looks like people are just kicking the can down the road. you announce something and then a month later it hasn't changed and you are starting to feel that deep economic pain. it is the responsibility of the federal government to step in and provide you with that support you need to provide food for your family until we get out of this, but let's look at the history of pandemics here. it is usually the second surge that kills people. it is usually the second surge that when you look back statistically is what ultimately
took more lives than anything else. so when we talk about trying to open this economy back up and get that small business back open and get you back to work permanently, we are talking about doing it for the long run, not just doing it for a few weeks and then having to close it back up again and go through all this pain of losing thousands of people every single day. but until then, this is the united states of america. we are the greatest country in the history of the world, and under no circumstances are we going to let you go hungry. under no circumstances are we going to let you not be able to provide for your children. this is, like i said, this is not where this is supposed to happen. greatest country in the history of the world, and that is what i would tell people, but we have to have empathy in our politics. we have to understand that people are going through deep, dark moments that they could have never foreseen and they didn't do anything wrong. we have to be there for them.
>> congressman max rose, thank you very much for your service and for your voice on this show this morning. still ahead, the white house is out with new guidelines for reopening the u.s. economy. the one thing that isn't mentioned? a national strategy for testing. we'll talk to senate minority leader chuck schumer who is calling for more test kits to fight this pandemic. plus, dr. anthony fauci shuts down misleading comparisons between the coronavirus pandemic and hiv or sars. we are back in 30 seconds.
dr. fauci, on the question of a vaccine, we don't have a vaccine for sars. i mean they got close in mice. we don't have a vaccine for hiv, and life did go on, right? so the idea that we're definitely going to have a vaccine, we didn't really approach much else in the same way as we're pegging going back to normal with a vaccine, did we? >> well, no, but, laura, this is different. hiv/aids is entirely different. we don't have a vaccine for hiv/aids but we have spectacularly effective treatment. people who invariably would have died years ago right now are leading essentially normal lives. sars is a different story. sars disappeared. we developed a vaccine, we were
in the process of going through the various phases. we showed it was safe. we showed it induced a good response, and then sars disappeared. we didn't need to develop a vaccine for sars. so i think it is a little bit misleading maybe -- >> right. >> -- to compare what we're going through now with hiv or sars. they're really different. >> but we don't know. this could disappear. i mean sars did pretty much disappear. this could as well, correct? >> yeah, yeah. you know, anything could, laura, but i have to tell you -- >> right. >> -- the degree of efficiency of transmissibility of this is really unprecedented in anything that i have seen. it is an extraordinarily efficient virus in transmitting from one person to another. >> dr. fauci -- >> those coronaviruses don't just disappear. >> wow. >> whew. good morning. welcome to "morning joe." it is friday, april 17th. a long week, along with joe,
willie and me, we have msnbc national affairs analyst, co-host of "show time's the circus" and editor-in-chief of "the recount," john halliman. good to have you on board. that was a dit bbit disturbing. >> something is happening. >> where's the angle? >> there is an angle. we will be asking this morning what exactly is going on. it is very interesting, willie. yesterday -- i don't know if you saw this, but dr. oz and dr. phil, tv doctors -- >> yeah. >> -- were going out, basically saying people are going to die, they're going to die. something is going on here and it is interesting that -- i saw a tweet this morning from morton overby. he said, notice how the people who at first didn't take this pandemic seriously and then
tried to gaslight you about understanding it sooner than anyone, now that mitigation works are the first people who are saying we shouldn't take it seriously again. so a lot of the same people that mocked the medical experts and said it was the media's new hoax to overplay this pandemic, at the same time donald trump was saying it is 15 people and soon it will be down to zero, then came out and said, "oh, yeah, we knew this before anybody else," and now they're trying to do it -- well, here. let's play dr. -- >> this is tuesday night. >> let's play dr. phil. this is dr. phil from last night. listen to dr. phil from last night and let's try to figure out what is going on. >> 250 people a year die from poverty, and the poverty line is getting such that more and more people are going to fall below that because the economy is crashing around us. they're doing that because people are dying from the
coronavirus, i get that. but, look, the fact of the matter is we have people dying -- 45,000 people a year die from automobile accidents. 480,000 from cigarettes. 360,000 a year from swimming pools, but we don't shut the country down for that, yet we are doing it for this. >> i mean, willie, the stupidity of that, i just -- i'll let others explain just how stupid that is. here is another tv doctor, dr. oz just saying, yeah, kids are going to die. here, roll the tape. >> yeah, i tell you, schools are a very appetizing opportunity. i just saw a nice piece in "the lancet" arguing that the opening of schools may cost us 2% to 3% in terms of total mortality. any life is a life lost, but to get every child back into a school where they're safely being educated, being fed and making the most out of their lives with the theoretical risk on the backside, it might be a trade-off some folks would consider.
>> willie -- >> tried to walk it back last night, but geez. >> 2% to 3% mortality for our children? i mean, my god, it is again -- as dr. fauci said, it is unprecedented. i want to show you one more thing that i saw. i don't sleep much, especially during this crisis. i saw this in the early morning. i think it was eric erickson put up this charge. eric, a conservative. he said, this is not the flu and this is the new atlanta source of cdc covid test tracking project. look at these lines. here is dr. oz's car crashes. you've got the flu, the 2017 -- dr. phil, 2017-2018 flu. the 57-58 asian flu with pneumonia. look at the line that goes up for covid-19.
that's what eric erickson put out. he also told the story, willie, of a nurse who wouldn't talk to him in 2016 because he didn't support donald trump, who got off of facebook yesterday because she is so -- so saddened by her -- all of her friends saying that this is overblown when she's never seen anything like this in her 20 years of nursing. and as dr. fauci said, this is unprecedented. it is not going to just go away. it doesn't mean we don't have to figure out, as we've been saying here, the balance between reopening the economy and the pandemic, but lives are going to be lost because of the propaganda that is being spewed out there. it really has started the past couple of days by so many different -- dr. phil and dr. oz and so many other people. >> yes, you had the tale of three doctors that you just showed all on "fox news",
speaking to the "fox news" audience. dr. fauci brought information. i think it is important for doctors to go all over the place and talk to all of those audiences. he rebutted laura ingraham's theory of hiv point by point and presented facts. the other two doctors, doctors oz and phil, both very smart men. you ask yourself what is going on there. dr. phil knows that the reason the economy was shut down is because this is contagious. i can't believe i'm saying this out loud. in a way that car crashes and swimming pool drownings are not. so that's why the economy was shut down. so you wonder what is going on. i think the problem with tv doctors is they think about tv ratings and they think about tv audiences, and they know where they are and they know that where they are on those two shows there was some scepticism about the plan to shut down the economy and the ongoing stay-at-home orders across these states. they fed into that. they played into that. the problem is they both have huge followings, huge audiences who listen to their every word,
and they know better. both of those guys know better. they're not dumb guys. so what are they up to? that's the question. >> bill clinton -- >> yeah. >> -- once said -- >> -- something with trump, maybe a problem. >> bill clinton once said if there's a turtle on top of a fence post -- >> yeah. >> -- it didn't just get there by accident. somebody put it there. if something -- john heilemann, i have also told my kids, if something doesn't make sense, there's a reason he doesn't make sense. there's something going on. so do you have any insight politically? here we have the president saying he's mussolini a couple of days ago, bad dictator with ultra constitutional powers. then a couple of days later we find out, as mika said before, that he's really just the wizard of oz. he's the fat little man behind the curtain pushing a lot of buttons saying, "i'm in power,"
now, "you guys do whatever you want to do." at the same time you have all of these tv doctors saying, oh, we have to get back to work. are they trying to set up governors like in michigan and wisconsin and pennsylvania? am i being too cynical here? are they trying to take the blame off of donald trump because he still doesn't have testing down? we still can't safely reopen the government. or what is going on? why are these -- i guess they're real doctors. i have never seen their certificates. maybe -- i don't know. maybe we can get evidence today that they're real doctors, but nobody is this ignorant. >> no. >> something is going on. can you -- do you have any insights into what is going on here, why they're putting millions of americans' lives at risk, why they're talking about 2% to 3% of children dying, being cool? i said a couple of weeks ago the argument by some people in the trumpi trumpist faction was, let the greatest generation die, it is
going to happen. so we once again rolled out the whole 2% to 3% mortality bs where our children and our grandparents can die and, you know what? that's just the cost of running an economy. what is going on? >> yeah. well, i do not know anything about the personal relationships between either doctors -- the single name doctors, dr. oz or dr. phil, with donald trump. i don't really know anything about the political affiliations of either one of those doctors, so i will just start there. but i do think that as donald trump has gotten closer to this -- to what is -- yes, we know the economy is going to reopen. we also know that the economy is going to reopen in phases. it was also the case. what we all know is donald trump doesn't have any authority one way or the other, either to shut down the economies in these states. he didn't have that authority. he also doesn't have the authority to open up the
economies in those states. that authority rests with the governors. donald trump can corporate, exp try to persuade, he can try to move the doctors through argumentation, through threats, bribes or whatever, but he can't order anybody to do anything. it is clear donald trump is fixated on reelection, we know that. it is clear that donald trump looks at the unemployment numbers across especially the states he knows he needs to win in the fall and is terrified of the fact that a prolonged economic downturn, the likes of which we are almost certainly going to see, is imperilling his election every day and he is willing to gamble the lives of americans to try to start restart the economy because he knows that's the only pretext or premise or argument he has to make. it always was the case, the only lifeboat for donald trump was the economy. so is donald trump trying to set up a situation right now whereby he can somehow figure out a way to get credit for the economy opening up while somehow blaming someone else or at least setting up the notion that the death that's going to happen if any
economy is opened up prematurely, that that death is kind of the cost of doing business? acceptable levels of mortality, that's just a price we're going to have to pay either to offload the blame directly on to governors or essentially say that was the inevitable cost of what we had to do. i think that's where he is trying to get to. what these doctors are to gain from propagating that view and from standing alongside donald trump other than the weird satisfaction that a lot of people seem to get from standing in the glow of donald trump or getting a pat on the head from him on television, i do not know if they have some football gaine they're playing but that's no doubt what donald trump is trying to get done. wants to open up the economy and wants to get the credit for putting people back to work without taking the blame if there are outbreaks in these states going forward which there will be if these states get ahead of themselves and open up too soon. still ahead on "morning joe," we will talk to the pentagon's point man in the
fight against the pandemic, how the u.s. military is taking a leading role. plus, the president of the white house correspondents association sizes up another wild week in washington. first, senator chuck schumer is standing by. the latest on his approach to shoring up the american economy when "morning joe" comes right back. we've got the retinol that gives you results in one week. not just any retinol. accelerated retinol sa. for not only smoother skin in one day, but younger-looking skin in just one week. and that's clinically proven. results that fast or your money back. unless you're attached to your wrinkles. one week is all it takes. neutrogena®. i'm gonna turn pop, techno, funk oand counrock and roll!zombies. [ gasping ] [ flatulence ] happy birthday?
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president trump spent weeksdoweek down playing the threat of the coronavirus. now that tens of thousands of americans are dead he is adopting a new approach, shifting the blame to others. here is how the recount framed it so well. >> we have it totally under control. it is one person coming in from china. >> it is going to disappear. it is like a miracle, it will disappear. >> our numbers are lower than just about anybody. >> no, i don't take responsibility at all. >> people coming in from china where this all started, it could
have been stopped right where it came from, china. >> it came from china. it got out of control. >> when you think about governor cuomo, he is supposed to be buying his own. we're going to help. >> people like governor hensley, he shouldn't be relying on the federal government. >> don't call the woman in michigan. she has no idea what is going on and all she does is say, "oh, it is the federal government's fall." and we've taken great care of michigan. >> we inherited, this administration inherited a broken system. >> the original test, the ones we inherited, jim, they were broken and obsolete. >> we inherited a broken system. >> the w.h.o., that's the world health organization, they missed the call. world health got it wrong. i mean they got it very wrong. in many ways they were wrong. i'm not happy with the world health organization. >> the reality is that the w.h.o. failed to adequately obtain, vet and share information in a timely and transparent fashion. it would have been so easy to be
truthful. >> the coronavirus -- you know that, right? the coronavirus -- and this is their new hoax. >> and the 15 within a couple of days is going to be down to close to zero. >> oh. >> you know, we know one thing. as impactful as that is, it is going to be outdated by the end of the day because it says 31,000 deaths. >> i know. >> the death count just keeps skyrocketing up like that chart that eric erickson tweeted out earlier. deaths are still going straight up. so many americans, millions of americans have been responsible and they've stayed at home and they've taken social distancing seriously, and so the mitigation is helping right now. but, mika, in the recount video donald trump blamed china. of course, at the same time he was -- before that he said how great china was and they were transparent and he thanked
president xi. he blamed the governors. he blamed that one from michigan. he blamed other presidents. he blamed the world health organization for basically taking the same stance that he did. >> yeah. >> said, "why continue they just be truthful," and then, of course, we see it is the same donald trump that basically called it a hoax. coronavirus, he said coronavirus and his audience booed at the quote hoax, that the media was overplaying it, the medical community was overplaying it, the scientists were overplaying it. well, they weren't overplaying it and now that actually mitigation is working, that listening to dr. fauci and dr. birx is working, now they're at it again. what is going on? >> well, i think in terms of the media responsibility it is really curious. even the hosts that we came in with, the attitude of these interviews are all in line with trump's desire to reopen the
country, which he had this big pronouncement yesterday. >> before testing, before we're ready. >> yes. a big pronouncement yesterday about a grand reopening which is now given to the states, given to the governors which he claimed he had absolute power over but now doesn't, because he would like the responsibility to lay on them. dr. birx laid out very clear guidelines as to how some businesses could reopen. they are specific. are they perfect? no, but they -- they help with the physical distancing. they help with trying to stop the spread. that's all on us still. it is not testing. it is not therapeutics. it is not a vaccine. so it was very uncomfortable to watch that host when we came in pushing dr. fauci to try and say this might go away like some other epidemics that, you know, the world has faced. and for him to say very politely, to use the word "misleading" to your face,
because it was, and usually journalistically even, the way she was questioning and pushing toward this going away was so off base. because you look for two, three sources. you look for really, really strong sources. there are no sources saying this is going to go away on its own. so you have to wonder what the motive is there, like a job or something. jim vandehei, donald trump often interacts with his friends on television and tries to push for a certain theme. is it possible that he's still sort of interacting that way? >> well, i think what is interesting about this conspiracy theory is if you think about the conspiracy theories since donald trump took office, he was usually a big participant in it. right now, if you look at what dr. phil or dr. oz or some of these conservative commentators are saying, just point to donald trump. donald trump has been the one who is sitting at the podium
saying 2.2 million people could have died, maybe it is 1.6 million people could have died. then he says the number is 100,000 to 250,000. they're saying -- well -- and if donald trump did want to signal to them that, yeah, get back to work, this is all a hoax, he would just say it. if you look at that plan that he put out last night, that was a very, very conservative plan. it was very deferential to the governors. it is staggered and it is basically doing the things that the faucis of the world want him to do. so whatever is happening with these doctors -- by the way, i have talked to some business leaders. i have talked to fortune 500-ceos who share this view, who will talk about it in private, that they believe that we're overreacting to -- yes, it is a terrible death count but it is not that high compared to the flu or that high compared to car accidents. so this is -- there's definitely people out there who sincerely believe that the risk/reward,
that we're erred on that. there's almost nobody who has actually studied this, no governor who looked at the data, none of the health officials, kn nobody at hhs, nobody on the task force that is saying, yeah, it is a joke, we can run back in and it is going to dissipate quickly. i think we know what it is and the steps we need to take, and they were articulated yesterday. there's a gap between the bravado you hear from president trump in the meandering news conferences and what they're actually do in. had he not done all of that weird stuff about, "i'm the authoritarian leader and i can dictate what governors do," all of that was meaningless and nonsense because he ended up doing what the constitution tells him to do, which is defer to the states and let them make decisions. >> coming up on "morning joe," what is next in washington? we will talk to senate minority leader chuck schumer about the ongoing push for economic recovery and whether politics are getting in the way. "morning joe" is back in a moment. ♪
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welcome back. msnbc contributor mike barnacle joins the conversation. senate minority leader senator chuck schumer of new york is our guest. senator schumer, i would like to start by asking you about the president's comments last night, revealing this multi-phased plan to reopen the country. he said, "we're starting our lives back again."
how do you see that plan playing out realistically in your state of new york? >> well, you know, the plan is a little more measured than what the president said in the past, which is good, but there's a key thing missing in all of this. and the business leaders he talked to, political leaders, democrat and republican he talked to, said it is called testing. if we don't have a strong adequate testing regime we will have real trouble. you have to know who has the illness, who is immune from the illness and who could get the illness before we can determine who can go back to work and who can't. that's why we senate democrats have posed, and now with speaker pelosi we are pushing it in the interim covid 3, a $30 billion plan to have an immediate regime on testing, figure out the best test, use the dpa -- the defense production act -- to take over the factories and their supply chains and make it and
distribute it across the country where it is needed. you know, we want to open small businesses up, but if small business is open and no customers are on the streets because everyone is afraid to go out because they don't know who has the virus and who doesn't, what good is it going to be? right now as you know -- and you pointed this out over and over, mika, the testing regime is scatter shot and totally inadequate for the job needed to get the country back to work. >> but, senator, the president says time and time again, he said it last night, the government can't do testing, we can't be on street corners. that's not our job to do the testing, that this is something better to be done -- he literally said last night, it is much better to do that on the local level. >> yes. well, we agree, but not -- the state can't come up with its own test. many of the states are inadequate to come up with their own test. we need a national program distributed to the local governments, but one of the reasons -- what we have called for in this -- you know, as we are debating what to do about small businesses, we want to help small business, although
there are a lot of problems with the program. smaller businesses don't be able to get it. you know, if you are a business with 400 people and a good connection with the banker, you are going to get it. if you are a restaurant you are having real troubel, minority business, inner city, rural, they're all having trouble. we have proposed hand in hand with that $100 billion in health care for our hospitals which are the front line here, and $30 billion for a testing program, notional the way i have mentioned briefly, and money for local governments. if we don't have the people who help out on the streets, the contact tracing, if we don't have the police and fire and emts who are needed here, it is not going to work. so you need it to be a little more comprehensive than just giving money to one small business program. now, the good news, mika, we are having discussions -- speaker pelosi's staff, my staff -- with secretary of treasury mnuchen. we have had constructive talks. they're going to continue through the weekend, and i don't
see any reason why we can't come to an agreement soon. the president even was more positive about coming to an agreement last night in his press conference. it is vital we do this. it is vital we help small business, but if we don't deal with the testing and health care problems, if we don't deal with the local government problems, small business may have enough money to get back -- although we have to fix that program -- but people won't go out on the streets. >> willie. senator schumer, as you just laid out that ppe program has run out of its $350 billion worth of funds. there's that $250 billion legislation proposed to get the money to small businesses right now. it looks to a lot of small business owners waiting for the checks, who actually had loans approved but now hearing from their banks there's no money left in the fund, like you all, the democrats, are standing in the way of that because you want to negotiate another piece for hospitals and state and local governments. >> that's not true.
>> why not do it as a separate piece of legislation, senator, and get the new ppp funding directly to small business owners today? >> first of all, to give the money to the ppp program without correcting it would make no sense. you would still have more than half of the businesses left out and getting no money. don't just ask democrats. eight republican senators said that in a letter to mitch mcconnell. the chamber of commerce, hardly a democratic organization, also agreed. so we have to fix that program as we give it more money. number two, as i mentioned, willie, if we don't deal with the health care -- that's just as immediate as small business. the testing, which you have talked about all morning -- correctly so -- the lack of money for hospitals, the fact that small governments, local governments and state governments are so lacking money is also vital. when they layoff hundreds of thousands of people, which they will before may 4th when we come back, that's just as bad as the small business person not being able to employ people. so we need -- we don't want to
do a whole covid 4, there are lots of things there, but these immediate things are needed. there's a consensus in the business community, even among some republicans -- marco rubio, the head of the small business program, said we had to do local governments and health care as well and we're making progress. mnuchen and i are having good conversations with speaker pelosi. we are making progress. we can get this all done hopefully very, very soon. that will do a lot more than just renewing one program of small business, which we should do. we want to do that. >> and there are some members now of your own caucus, senator, senator cinema of arizona, saying, hey, democrats, let's get moving, get this money out and negotiate the other elements later. >> yes, but i spoke to -- >> what did she say to you, senator? >> wait, willie. i spoke to senator cinema. look at her twitter. she said both sides ought to come together and come to agreement. that's what we think.
>> sure. how quickly will the money get out to small businesses waiting for it right now? >> right away. first of all, they're still sending the existing money out. there are contracts signed but not all of the money has come out. a lot of businesses aren't getting it. as i mentioned to you, i have spoken to thousands of businesses, you know, on these web things, webcam -- web -- i forgot what they're called. web things. >> zoom, yeah. >> across new york state, and large numbers are turned down. large numbers can't get the emergency loan program which gives them a $10,000 infusion, because the emergency loan program, which is the quickest way to mainstream money into the smaller businesses has run out. they're giving them $1,000 instead of $10,000. so we want to -- we have said put more money in, but do it in a way so it works for all businesses, not just the larger ones. >> mike barnacle. >> senator, all of our lives we
have been hearing the phrase "america is the greatest country in the world." so this gets to testing. >> yes. >> there aren't enough tests. people cannot get tested whenever they want to get tested. but more importantly, i want to ask you, what has happened to the underpinnings of the testing process? in many cases there aren't enough chemicals to give you the equivalent answer to how the test came out. there aren't enough testing sticks. how is it that that happens in this country at this time during this crisis? >> there was not enough vigilance ahead of time as you know. the cdc and the fda were sort of hollowed out. the national security council, which is supposed to be sort of looking down the road at what our big problems are, the unit that was supposed to prepare and make sure the country was prepared for some kind of pandemic -- this was before corona -- was disbanded a year and a half ago. so you can't let your guard down and you can't let this view,
government is no good of -- of govern. because government is the only place that can do certain things such as preparing the country in advance for future problems. that's not business's job. that's not each individual's job. that is government's job. i think that this will be a lesson that we cannot just hollow out government and think we're not going to pay the consequences. >> senate minority leader chuck schumer. thank you so much. we look forward to talking to you again very soon. >> thank you. a look overseas where the uk extended its lockdown for another three weeks, while other european countries are trying to figure out how to reopen slowly. nbc news senior international correspondent keir simmons joins us with more on that from london. keir. >> reporter: hey, mika. well, europe, many places of course are a number of weeks ahead of america. what europe offers programs is a
window into america's future in that sense. what you heard senator schumer talking about there, about the importance of testing, about the importance of giving people confidence is exactly the challenge that the europeans are facing right now. so just take a look at this graph from "the financial times" that shows the death rates with europe compared to the u.s. you can see, for example, in italy, in spain, that death rate is coming down very, very slowly. when the president talks about opening up when the numbers come down, you can see how challenging it is. at the same time we have taken a look across europe at the challenges that european governments are facing, trying to instill confidence in their people. europe's cities silenced by coronavirus are slowly trying to open up. it isn't easy. >> i'm on my way to town to see what it is like after four weeks. >> reporter: barbara edwards austria ventured out this week.
>> people were apprehensive, so am i, but i'm still going to give it a try as we have to restore some normalcy to our lives. not too many people about. >> reporter: turns out she's not the only nervous one. the stores are mostly empty. >> a lot of the small clothes shops are open, but not many people inside. >> reporter: europe's governments grappling with the crucial question of safety in their own ways. italy, the epicenter of the crisis, first opening book shops and children's clothing stores. [ speaking foreign language ]. >> reporter: hard-hit spain, sending workers back to factories and construction sites. denmark restarting elementary schools, but there parents have been protesting, concerned over safety. back austria, thousands of stores have reopened, but economists there are cautious.
>> when would these measures finally be gone, all of them? >> well, we are not sure whether they will all be gone, but the plan is now to lift gradually every 14 days some of the measures and have a look at how the infection rate develops. >> reporter: the lack of coordination between countries is another concern. because coronavirus is global, the patchwork of plans to revive economies around the world suggests international travel may be even harder to revive. >> how is it going, guys? >> reporter: in paris the littler family from boston have been keeping a video diary. they just learned the lockdown there will last another month. >> we know the government is going to try to reopen some things, but then that's all we know. we don't know if there will be enough masks. we don't know if there will be enough tests. we don't know how we're going to be kept safe.
>> reporter: while widespread testing is key, it is available in only a handful of countries like germany and iceland. until a vaccine is available the world will struggle to get back to normal. and that's the really crucial lesson i think from here for america, guys, is that in order to get people to confident, what you have to recognize is even when the lockdowns are lifted the virus is still here. so will i feel confident to go to a restaurant, to go to a bar? will i feel confident to go and visit my dad in his 70s? that's the challenge the world faces. that's the challenge america faces. that's the challenge of the president's exit plan he announced yesterday. >> nbc's keir simmons. thank you very much. up next, president trump is running for reelection and doing so from the white house podium with pseudo rallies nearly every day, some call them. we'll talk about the impact of that. plus, the pentagon calls it an
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let's ask about the video. i have never seen a video like that played in this room. it looks a bit like a campaign ad. >> we are getting fake news and i like to have it corrected. joining us now, president of the white house correspondents association, jonathan karl. he's also abc news chief white house correspondent and author of the new book entitled "front row at the trump show." jonathan, great to have you on. that video felt like kind of a breaking point.
as the media struggles to make sense of these briefings, many of the briefings have a lot of lies in them, factual errors and disinformation at times, and yet there is the urge to cover the president when he speaks. he's supposedly updating us on the coronavirus. how are you as a reporter in the room but also as head of the white house correspondents association assessing this dilemma as it stands right now? >> well, look, when he showed that video, that briefing, which went on and on and on, did look more like a campaign rally than a white house press conference. as a white house correspondent, you have to go and cover it. you still have to ask the questions of the president and the experts on that stage. but, you know, in terms of carrying those things live, i mean that looked like a classic case of where if a network was going to carry that, you had to give equal time to the opposite party because it was a campaign event. that said, mika, look what
happened yesterday. the president, you know, announced the new guidelines. that was an important -- an important event. he largely went back on much of what he had said in terms of reopening the country, you know, running rough shod over the governors. he did the exact opposite of what he had been saying, but that was an important briefing. >> jonathan, i'm going to hand it to mike barnacle in just a second, except that when you ask him questions -- of course, you cover the events. you can cover them live, you can dip in, dip out, but when he is not telling the truth i think it is important to set the record straight. having said that, when he goes to questions, he doesn't answer your questions. he doesn't answer the questions of the reporters in the room. he deflects them. he uses them almost as tools to say something else, and then he doesn't allow a follow-up. number one, that must be frustrating. number two, at what point is it a joke? >> it is maddeningly frustrating. i have known donald trump since 1994. i write about these interactions
in my book. you have to find a way to get to him and get the follow-ups. yesterday what i was able to do was i asked him about the protests in michigan and in other states by these people refusing to comply with the stay-at-home orders. i asked him if -- you know, what he made of those protests and if he thought those people need to comply with the governor's orders. he gave me a nonanswer, but i did follow up. i said, what about what they are doing? should they be complying? he actually gave me an answer that i believe was very important. he said, well, i believe they do listen to me, and i believe that the governors for the most part are doing the right thing. so now those people -- those people leading the protests in michigan, maybe the only person that they have a chance of listening to is donald trump, and he essentially told them yesterday to knock it off, to listen to the governors. >> mike barnacle. >> hey, jonathan.
let's talk about the role of press secretary in this administration. to my memory this is the first time we've had a white house press secretary who is more or less a propagandist. i am wondering -- there's been a recent change in the press secretary's position. we have a new press secretary in there now. does it make any difference in your day-to-day life as a white house correspondent who the press secretary is in this administration and how they operate? >> well, i detail my interactions with the previous three. we're now on press secretary four. you know, it certainly has made life either interesting or difficult. i mean some of the interactions back with sean spicer, which were a constant warfare between the press secretary and the press, on to sarah sanders who was actually, you know, took one line in public but was actually pretty constructive dealing with the white house reporters behind the scenes, with some serious exceptions, but for the most part. and then stephanie grisham, who was basically -- you know,
didn't brief a single time, didn't interact a lot with the white house press corps. now we have a new -- i don't know where kaylee mcnaigh menan going to be. you know there has been one press secretary in the white house and that is donald trump himself. he deals directly. i've had more direct interactions with donald trump than i've had with some of his press secretaries. he deals directly with the reporters. he attacks us in public, but he also courts us in private. >> hey, john. it is willie. great to you have back on this morning. i would be interested in your perspective as someone who covers this white house so closely of the balance we've been talking about, that doctors fauci and birx have to find in dealing with the president of the united states, giving him what he wants, being deferential with him but having to deal with the health of the american people, lead with science and lead with medicine. it looks yesterday like they
sort of won that argument. they were the ones presenting the guidelines. they were the ones that perhaps convinced the president to let the governors decide what is best for the states. how do you see that when you cover the white house, the balance between the think they remarkable job, willie, of channeling him. probably more successfully -- there have been many who have tried in this white house, and i detail through the book john kelly who really tried to stop the president's worst impulses, channel him in one direction and ultimately jailed overall. mattis tried that from his perch at the pentagon. these doctors have been more successful in doing that. i think one thing that really hasn't been noted yet on this, i think the one person who may have had more impact on this than any other single individual is stanley cher arks the president's friend, new york real estate developer who called the president up and told him a
few weeks ago he tested positive for coronavirus. and throughout all of these briefings, the president, i'm told on a daily basis, would inquire about the fate of his friend stanley. stanley at one point slipped into a coma, and then he died. and this, i think, really shook the president. he referred -- he didn't mention stanley by name yesterday, but he referred to him. i think this is -- donald trump is somebody who thinks visually. that's why all the briefings have to have charts and pictures. he thinks visually and thinks of his friend stanley when he thinks about this crisis. >> again, the new book is "front row at the trump show." jonathan karl, thank you so much. jonathan is president of the white house correspondents association. talk to you soon. joining us now, commander of u.s. northern command, terrance oshaughnessy. he is directing the pentagon's
operations in support of fema. general, thank you so much for joining us. obviously, on many levels, this is a national security issue. tell us what your teams have been able to, do what the dod has been able to do to shore up this country in the fight against the virus. >> thank you mika. we have over 16,000 sailors, soldiers, are amen and marines providing support on the front lines. whether it's new york city or some of the other states we're in, we're there to provide -- what do the state and local officials need? we're there to provide them the assistance and the relief valve in some cases. but this is a war. this is a campaign that we're on. we're -- we are across the nation right now providing that assistance. >> willie? >> general, willie geist. good to have you pon. there are sites in new york city, floating hospitals sailing
into new york harbor past the statue of liberty, field hospitals in central park, the javits center turned into a field hospital as well. you've described this as a war. you mentioned that again. from your point of view, how is the war going? >> yeah, thanks, willie. i think the war is going extremely well, and i really have to take my hat off to the frontline workers. it's the health care workers in these hospitals day in, day out, working their way through this, providing the care and assistance our nation needs. that's where we're focusing our attention. you mentioned the "comfort" and javits center as key areas we're providing that assistance. we also found because of the great support from the citizens that we've been able to mitigate, flatten the curve. we're finding the hospitals have the capacity, but as one of your earlier guests mentioned, it's the staffing of the hospitals that's the biggest problem. we're manning the "comfort" and javits center but we're also pushing our doctors and nurses
and med techs forward into the hospitals. we're in 10 different hospitals in new york city with over 500 doctors and nurses in queens and bronx and brooklyn and manhattan providing that assistance they need right now. give an example in newark, our team went into a hospital in newark. they have 664 staff members there. over 200 of them had called in sick that day. and so we're providing that assistance that is needed on the front lines for those health care workers. >> when the "comfort" came to new york city and when the javits center was set up as a field hospital, as you know better than i do, they were supposed to take some of the pressure off new york city hospitals that would be overwhelmed by covid patients. that didn't quite happen so they were opened up to covid patients. did you view that as a good sign that perhaps the hospitals in new york city were doing better than we thought they would be doing and, therefore, didn't need that additional relief from the "comfort" and from the javits center? >> absolutely. this is a success story. and the success is that the
capacity of the hospitals is able to take the vast majority of the patients. right now we have 74 patients on the "comfort." 334 in the javits center. we've taken over 1,000 patients on those two facilities alone, and we have provided some of that relief. it's not to the extent they thought coming in. what we say is no plan survives contact with the enemy. this was no different. we adapted. we changed what we were doing. we wanted to support what the new york city citizens needed. that's why we're pushing the doctors directly into the hospitals right now. we're changing all across the nation. whatever our nation needs, that's what we're going to be able to provide for support. >> general, mike barnicle has a question for you. mike? >> general, first of all, thank you for being there when your country needs you. we appreciate it. secondly, the question. what are your biggest daily logistical challenges, and what shortages, if any, do you have to deal with on a daily basis?
>> yeah, thanks, mike. one of the lessons learned from so many military campaigns. at the end of the day it comes down to logistics. this is no different than what we're facing. when we were looking at the covid game plan and decided we were going to change what we were doing on the "comfort" and go from non-covid to accepting any patients of that high trauma, high urgency care that we actually needed different equipment. so we found we needed pressure suits in order to do surgery for a high-end trauma case. you need a pressure suit if you might have a covid patient. so we found pressure suits. there were none available in the new york city area, but we found them down in virginia and flew them up in a helicopter and had them there in a matter of hours. those are the types of things we're doing logistics on. finding what we need. using our military assets to get it there and make sure our forward troops have what they need. >> how many troopers are under
your command, in this command? >> well, specific to this mission set, 16,000 forward deployed right now on this mission set. we also have critically important mission, defending our homeland. and that's what we do day in, day out. it doesn't change just because we're fighting the covid virus as well. we have folks doing ballistic missile defense by norad. folks ready to respond with their fighter jets, command and control aircraft command centers across the nation. of course, we have to be able to maintain that ability even in the covid environment. we have those crews isolated. we have the teams making sure we have what we call mission assurance because we can't stop defending our homeland. and we've seen what the russians, twice in the last couple of weeks, they've flown their aircraft close to our great nation and we've had to respond to them and so we have not missed a beat. we're making sure we have no vulnerabilities, that we are there to defend our nation. >> general terrance
o'shaughnessy, thank you so much for your service and for everything that you're doing right now. and we have this programming note for you. the rolling stones are joining an already packed lineup for an entertainment special to support the world health organization and the global fight to end covid-19. so tomorrow evening, the "one world together at home" event will be hosted by jimmy fallon, stephen colbert and jimmy kimmel and features lady gaga, paul mccartney, taylor swift, jennifer lopez, brad pitt, lizzo, billie eilish and many more including now the stones. you can watch the special broadcast tomorrow at 8:00 p.m. eastern on the networks of nbc news. willie, that's a big one. they're stepping up. >> it was already must-watch and now we've got the stones involved. i know where i'll be tomorrow
night. one lighter note. earlier in the show, due to an audio problem of my own doing. i was caught on camera not paying attention drinking coffee and they may have noticed, and they were right that, yes, this is the anchorman channel 4 news team mug. mike barnicle is our champ kind and you are our veronica corningstone. >> thank you. what's joe? who is joe? tell me, stay classy. >> he's ron burgundy and i'll take ryan fantana as long as we're handing out roles. >> mike is the news director. that does it for us this morning. stephanie ruhle picks up the coverage right now. >> thank you, veronica. good morning. i'm stephanie ruhle. it's friday, april 17th. and here are the facts at this hour. president trump says some states could begin reopening their economies immediately. even as the rate of new coronavirus cases and deaths
continues to be on the rise. this morning, the number of u.s. fatalities linked to coronavirus is over 34,000. that's up more than 2,000 since yesterday. there are almost 672,000 cases across our country. despite that, the president has announced new guidelines for states to get people back to work. it advises a phased approach that depends on states seeing a downward trajectory of new cases but leaves the final decision to specific state governors and does not include a timeline or any mention of may 1st. >> over the next very short period of time, it's going to be up to the governors. we're going to work with them. we're going to help them. but it's going to be up to the governors. i think they're going to -- i think you'll quite a few states starting to open. and i call it a beautiful puzzle. you have 50 pieces. all very different. but when it's