tv Morning Joe MSNBC August 18, 2020 3:00am-6:00am PDT
and a collective sigh of relief that this is something they can accomplish and they feel pretty pleased with themselves. >> hans nichols my friend, thank you as always. i'll read axios a.m. in just a little bit you can too just sign up at signup.axios.com. that does it for me this morning i'm yasmin vossoughian. "morning joe" starting right now. >> i think it's under control. >> how, a thousand americans are dying? >> it is what it is. >> donald trump is the wrong president for our country. he has had more than enough time to prove he can do the job but he is clearly in over his head. he cannot meet this moment. he simply cannot be who we need him to be for us. it is what it is. >> it is what it is. michelle obama using those words from president trump in her
keynote speech last night for the democratic national convention. good morning and welcome to "morning joe." it is tuesday, august 18th, along with joe, willie welcome back and me, we have white house reported for the associated press, jonathan lemire. politics and journalism professor and msnbc political contributor jason johnson. and senior opinion writer at the boston globe, kimberly atkins is with us. good to have you all. it's good to have willie back. >> it is. >> you're not going to be talking ability ttal talking about the red sox. >> willie has been on assignment, we can't talk about where that was but he's been on assignment. >> the convention last night, judging from the reviews across the political spectrum was quite a success. you had a couple of fox news anchors talking about dana prino
talking about how michelle obama stuck the landing and chris wallace talking about what a great contribution she gave to the biden campaign. that she splayed donald trump. >> it's great to be back. i'd rather be in a restaurant with a bunch of people doing our show in milwaukee but here we are in this strange weird. we knew it was going to be weird, we had to get used to it for a little while. but putting theatre criticism aside, closing with michelle obama, starting with republicans who switched their mind over donald trump. you had the family of george floyd. you had victims of covid-19, illustrating donald trump's failings on all of that. the leadup, including bernie sanders, which solidified the progressives that may be
disillusioned with joe biden thinking he is too moderate. you couldn't get better than those speakers. but closing with michelle obama, who said again last night, i hate politics, but i think that's why she's a great speaker and messenger, is because she lives somewhere above the political realm where she can speak as a human being, a mother, a wife, and a former first lady about the failings of donald trump. >> mika, i thought it went off very well last night. it was a show and the show went off very well considering the circumstances of it. you know, there were some people online that were talking about how it wasn't the most exciting thing in the world and the responses online i thought were fairly accurate. do you remember what these things were like when they were live? they were more boring, more staged -- >> some of them, yes. >> -- even more sleepers than they were.
because people would get up there and drag on. mr. chairman, i hereby -- >> some people like that stuff. >> i suppose some really weird people. i do not. i thought it was -- i thought, again, for the first night, i thought it was a good performance. and like willie said, they had everybody from republicans to michelle obama to bernie sanders, who did deliver the most compelling message to progressives, which is, listen, the consequences of failure are too high. >> yeah. >> there is -- though he did not quote general douglas mcarthur, he, in fact, said, there's no substitute for victory. that was the message he had for progressives. you may not love joe biden, but right now you need him. >> the consequences for failure with the convention were high, especially when you have so much material. the speakers, as we said,
spanned the political spectrum from bernie sanders and other former primary rivals, to republicans like john kasich and then michelle obama the headliner. she assailed president trump while making the case that america needs joe biden's leadership now more than ever. >> more than 150,000 people have died and our economy is in shambles because of a virus that this president downplayed for too long. whenever we look to this white house for some leadership or consolation or any semblance of steadiness, what we get instead is chaos, division, and a total and utter lack of empathy. if you take one thing from my words tonight, it is this, if you think things cannot possibly get worse. trust me, they can and they will
if we don't make a change in this election. if we have any hope of ending this chaos, we have got to vote for joe biden like our lives depend on it. i know joe. he is a profoundly decent man guided by faith. he was a terrific vice president. he knows what it takes to rescue an economy, beat back a pandemic and lead our country. and he listens. he will tell the truth and trust science. he will make smart plans and manage a good team. and he will govern as someone who's lived a life that the rest of us can recognize. >> you know, kimberly atkins, it's fascinating that four years later donald trump's message has been turned on its head. not just by michelle obama, but by 150, 160, 170,000 deaths.
what did donald trump say to african-americans, what did he say to black voters four years ago, what do you have to lose? and last night, michelle obama's message after four years of death, after four years of economic devastation, what did michelle obama say? if you don't think things can get worse, you're wrong. they can. and that, especially for black voters but for senior citizens and small business owners and americans who have been devastated by this pandemic that donald trump has been playing down from the very beginning, those words likely resonated last night. >> yeah. >> they really did. you're absolutely right. the answer to the question trump posed four years ago, we learned what he -- he actually said what
the hell do you have to lose? we learned the answer is your livelihood, your jobs, your health care and potentially your life. certainly now your ability to vote or be able to get your prescription drugs through the mail. michelle obama did a very good job of underscoring the urgency. look, we've been hearing for months now about not just within the democratic party all the factions and can they get energized and will joe biden be the right person? what you saw last night was from republicans, from progressives, from michelle obama, from everyone saying, look, whether or not joe biden was your guy in the primary, whether or not joe biden is the guy in your party, this is a moment that is urgent and requires your action. she used her own words about going high when others go low. she said that voters can go high by doing everything they can, by
voting like their lives depend upon it. so she put that there. that's the urgency. it's a pandemic, you may have to wear a mask, pack a dinner because you have to stand in line but that was the call to action and she was the best messenger of that. she was the best speaker in 2016 in philadelphia, if you recall, she lit up that place. the electricity was hard to explain and i didn't know how she could possibly bring that kind of smoke last night and she managed to do it. >> the former first lady also delivered a message with her necklace, which said, simply, vote. earlier in the day, in wisconsin, president trump asked who wants to listen to michelle obama do a taped speech? well, some folks at fox news were listening. and here's the reaction after the speech from them. >> very difficult to try to connect with an audience without
an actual audience there with you but she has the ability to connect with people through the screen. you got the sense when you talk about authenticity, she has it in spades. the dnc, if they look over the course of the night, the first virtual convention in history they would say michelle obama stuck the landing. >> michelle obama said she doesn't like politics and she said this speech was her main contribution to the biden campaign, it was a heck of a contribution. she really flayed, sliced and diced donald trump. >> so dana pereno said that michelle obama stuck the landing and chris wallace talked about that being a heck of a contribution to joe biden's election efforts. it really was. again, a speech that drew praise
from all quarters. >> it did. and she didn't get into policy. she did that, i think, deliberately. bernie sanders gave a long policy speech about progressive values and protecting those and why he believes joe biden will do that. what she was able to do, the former first lady, is talk about the character of the country, we're be better than this, this is not a president up to the job elected to do, closing with the line it is what it is. she also by wearing that vote necklace, that wasn't the end of her message to people registered to vote in the country that did not show up 2016. she laid out the 3 million vote margin, the places like michigan where 10,000 votes decided the election, and something like 100,000 registered voters didn't show up in 2016. her message was about telling people, if you don't like what
you see right now, get out and do something about it. >> willie, when she said that in some areas it broke down to two. you can tell the first lady had done her homework. we'll see if melania tries to lift some of this like she did four years ago, when she gives her speech for the rnc. this is what i found interesting lingui linguist linguistically, about what michelle obama said. several friends of mine, especially married friends, called me saying donald trump doesn't listen. he's a man who doesn't listen to you. and my married friends were were like, yes, he doesn't listen. there are a lot of people who say i hate politics but a woman
who's been in public life with her husband, barack obama, she sounded like regular people. this is politics, i don't care, but these are things that matter. one thing i want to say, the four year anniversary of donald trump saying what do you have to lose to black people at a church in detroit is tomorrow. we have a special day of coverage where we're talking about what have black people lost the last four years, health care, economics, doing a whole day of coverage of that tomorrow. over 32,000 african-american have died, at rates three and four times the rates of white americans because of mismanagement of the pandemic. she and bernie sanders were the highlights of a night that for a lot of people were boring but people will watch those two clips and those are the messages the denuclearization wanc wante >> president trump tried to
stump the dnc by stopping in wisconsin. and a new poll shows joe biden still holding a lead in that state. a new poll finds joe biden in front of donald trump 49 to 43% among likely voters there. and biden is winning the suburbs by 8 points, women by 10 points, college whites by 15 points. and they set up a place he could speak to folks when he landed, not necessarily safe in terms of social distancing guidelines, small crowd. >> when one of the things that really felt good about looking at the crowd, at the trump rally was the fact that almost all of the people there were wearing masks, at least in the pictures i saw, but jonathan lemire, we saw this happen in new hampshire, where donald trump
had to cancel an event because the crowds weren't as big as expected. this is a man who's used to going and seeing 5, 10, 15,000 people at rallies. yesterday was yet another small crowd in oshkosh. perhaps that was because there's not the excitement out there for him there was four years ago or perhaps it's because americans understand, even trump's most strident supporters understand we are in the middle of a pandemic and it's really not safe to go out and congregate around large crowds if you're an older american or if you have underlying conditions. >> right, joe. what we're seeing here, these aren't considered official rallies. they're more invite only, they're meant to be smaller. this is what you're going to see for the president going forward, a lot of airport hang a events.
he did two yesterday. not the size he's used to seeing. i say, my colleague on the ground said mask wearing was inconsistent, some were for sure and the social distancing went out the window once air force one landed. the two takeaways we should say from the president's appearances yesterday, minnesota one where his campaign thinks they have a chance but they're down in the polls. the president was considering a visit to the george floyd death site in minneapolis and the governor of minnesota said he warned the president not to do that for the fear what it could mean and the optics the community wouldn't want him there. and in wisconsin the president said the only way we can lose this election is if it were rigged. that's a message we have to watch going forward. he's been planting those seeds,
sowing the chaos with the post office which we've been watching on the show. in terms of his response to the convention last night, most of his tweets were singled out at new york governor andrew kmoe, who appeared early in the evening, was critical of the president's response to the coronavirus pandemic. michelle obama saying that she hates politics and then delivering such whick hered if subtle remarks. the most powerful moment of the evening was when they had real people up there. i'll end with this quote one young woman who said of this of his father, his other
preexisting condition was being a trump supporter. for that he paid with his life. >> so that event yesterday in an airport hangar was invitation only? >> yeah. these are small groups, this was for local groups, he did two yesterday one in wisconsin and one in minnesota. for now the trump campaign is shying away from trying to have a big rally. we saw what happened in tulsa, they didn't draw anywhere near the crowd they would have expected and then the health officials in the city believed that event helped spread covid-19 infections and their other attempt at a reboot was one in new hampshire where they cancelled it publicly because of rain but privately because they were afraid no one was going to show up. so they are looking at smaller events while getting the president back on the road. >> that's interesting. i followed a lot of presidential
campaigns and gubernatorial campaigns and at this stage of a campaign i've never been to an airport hangar event that was restricted to invitation only. it obviously is meant to stop the president from being embarrassed again by low turnout. >> no question. as jonathan said tulsa was a huge wakeup call for the campaign about the number of people who wanted to m come out or were willing to come out in the middle of a public health crisis to see the president of the united states, yes, this is by design. kimberly i wanted to talk to you for a moment about the poll, going back and areas of concern inside wisconsin that are reflective of areas of concerns nationally. wisconsin another state like michigan that he won by a sliver in 2016 needs to win again, but if you go through the cross tabs there aren't a lot of areas that look good for him, including seniors, which is so interesting, a group he cleaned
up with nationally in 2016, he's down there again by double digits in the state of wisconsin, 65 and older. these are people who are being impacted by covid-19 unlike any other group. >> absolutely. these are people whose lives have been up ended by covid-19, the fear about how much more susceptible they are to the virus, the inability of them to see their loved ones. i spent my vacation through the midwest, including michigan where i visited my parents and i couldn't get within 6 feet of my own mother and father because of this. people are being impacted by this in a real way. and he knows this is -- these are important states for him. if he loses those states, it will be difficult, if not impossible, for him to be re-elected and these are in the small margins you talked about, 10,000 votes in michigan where he won the victory in 2016.
so clearly they are not trying to expand the base. they're not going to other states trying to expand their voters. they're trying to make sure the voters they have come out. rest assured i saw a lot of trump signs throughout pennsylvania, michigan, and ohio last week but clearly it's signs the support is eroding in a way that could be devastating to that campaign. >> kimberly atkins, thank you so much. there is no doubt that donald trump's campaign, has hundreds of millions of dollars, and they are going to use that money to focus on getting their people out, many people who they believe have never voted before, and didn't vote in 2016, they think they can get them to the polls this year to win the election. it's interesting, though, mika, willie talked about seniors and we've been talking about this
since march, senior citizens understand they're on the front line of the pandemic that's killed 170,000 people, the president kept saying it was one person coming in from china and it would go away, it was 15 people that had it but soon it would be down to zero, kept saying it would magically disappear in april when the weather got warmer, said he wanted to reopen the economy by easter, said he wanted kids to go back to school last spring. here we are this fall we saw what happened at unc chapel hill where they tried to get students to go back to school, they had to shut it down already. there's a poll that came across "financial times" a poll on americans' view about sending children back to school. and once again, donald trump finds himself in the minority. over two-thirds of americans believe it is unsafe and they
fear that it will be unsafe to send children back to school. now, again, whether that's the case or not, whether schools can figure out a way to safely send children back to school and to take care of them, that is, of course, up to each individual school. they're trying to figure it out in each school system. but again just to show you how donald trump is wildly out of step with americans as he's been out of step with senior citizens throughout the entire pandemic, a president who's been pushing for schools to be reopened now for several months is on the wrong side of a two-thirds majority. and that's happened time and time again throughout this crisis. and it has to be the reason why he's having such problems with senior citizens. >> also, it didn't have to be this way. we could be opening schools more
safely had this been mitigated correctly. so these schools becoming super spreader events highlights how poorly this has been handled. in terms of the event in wisconsin that was invitation only, i wonder if they made them click on a waiver saying you don't have to sue the trump campaign or you can't sue the trump campaign if you get coronavirus greeting the president at the airport because those people were squished together, some not wearing masks and they were invited by the trump campaign. it's like they don't -- they don't listen to the science, they don't learn, or they don't care. which is something we're assessing every day. joe, i've been watching you hunched over a desk for many, many months and i think it's time now that we share with our viewers that you have a book coming out, printing in november entitled "save freeman, truman and the war and the fight for
western civilization". you spent your life studying history, presidential history, but why harry truman and why now? >> i was hunched over the desk because willie and i look at the dogs -- >> no. you've been writing. >> exactly. it's a hard job, but something has to do it. when i wasn't doing that, yeah, i've been working on this book and writing it a long time. harry truman, of course, had an extraordinary biography written about him by david mccullough several decades ago. and there was part of his story that i thought was extraordinarily timely. and that was what he did following world war ii. you know, we obsess so much and i obsess so much in my reading about world war ii and the greatness of winston churchill and fdr and eisenhower and the allied powers.
but what happened after the war actually shaped our world as much as any presidency. truman, of course, had stalin, met stalin at the end of the war, and it's hard to remember but the soviets were our allies, took the brunt of the casualties during world war ii and immediately following the war, this guy who was a failed has beener dasher from missouri, a simple man, had to actually lead western civilization in its fight against stalin's aggressive overtures across europe. and so, it's a story of an accidental president, a guy who when fdr in 1944 at the chicago convention phoned him and asked him to be his vice president, he said go to hell. and fdr who wasn't used to being crossed responded back to him,
if you want to break up the democratic party in the middle of a war, go ahead. and truman reluctanty decided to take that on. but that was 1944, he becomes president in april of '45, he doesn't know about the atomic bomb. fdr had kept that from him, they only met a couple of times after he was selected to be on the ticket. he then had to make that fateful decision. and then, going into 1947, greece and turkey were in danger, stalin and the soviets were looking to move westward, and it was harry truman who, after the british sent two diplomatic notes saying we are exhausted, we can no longer defend greece, we can no longer defend turkey, harry truman had the decision to make, did the united states go back to isolationist mode which we had
been in since george washington's farewell address or did the united states create a doctrine, a follow-up to the monroe doctrine, and -- that would actually contain the soviet threat. and this is the incredible story of how he did that, how he did it with republican support, who were iso lagsnys at the time. and how he did it, the foreign policy structures whether you talk about nato or whether you talk about again the truman doctrine. the world we live in was shaped by this simple man from missouri. nobody would have expected it. david ignatius called truman an american miracle and that's what his life proved to be. >> and people like david ignatius, this story and book fits into our times because
foreign policy experts, when they talk about the unraveling of all the work america has done since truman creating the post world war ii era and the american century, that points to this time you're writing about. congratulations on the book. i didn't know you were doing this. a lot of us picked up habits during quarantine, you sat down and wrote a book about harry truman. i play keno at the deli. joe, you said accidental president, i don't think people realized he'd only been vice president for a couple months when fdr died. he was having a drink with sam rayburn and gets a call to come to the white house, and the first lady informs him that fdr has died and here's the oval office in the middle of world war ii. >> and, of course, the famous
exchange between the two, harry truman knew that fdr was in bad physical shape, but at the same time was shocked by the news and asked the first lady if there was anything he could do for her. and she said, you're the one in trouble now, what can we do for you? and you're right. they were still at war in europe. he would have to make the decision, like i said, whether to drop the atom bomb on japan, two eventually or have a full-scale invasion of japan that could cost millions of americans lives. but he was, just to simplify this, the rodney dangerfield of chief executives. his entire life, his mother-in-law had no use for him
from the second he met his wife until she died in the white house. he never seemed to be able to get too many people's respect. he only ran for senate in 1934 because the first four men that the party boss wanted to run refused to run so they pushed truman out there who had a shocking victory in 1934. he ran for re-election after six years of supporting fdr. in 1940 he was considered dead in the water by the st. louis dispatch. fdr refused to endorse him again, he was dismissed as a ruby the "new york times." once again it was certain harry truman was going to lose. he shocked the political world in 1940, won again. and then, of course, in 1944, when he was selected as vice president, again, he was treated with contempt.
called a strange little man. and i remember -- and i tell the story briefly of my parents, my mom telling me that, you know, they were a rural family in dalton, georgia, had struggled through the great depression. felt like they only got through the great depression because of fdr and the new deal. and i remember my mom saying her family would laugh every time they heard harry truman talk. now they were dyed in the wool democrats like harry truman but they felt like the press barons of new york city that this guy wasn't up for the job but he did an incredible job, proved everyone wrong and we inherited the world of harry truman. here's one of the big stories of the book and then i'll shut up.
harry truman surrounded himself with some of the greatest minds in foreign policy. he had giants in foreign policy around him, he asked for their guidance, he took their guidance and then he was very decisive in the decisions he made and believed that the buck stopped with him and most of those decisions he made were the right ones and changed the world we lived in and ensured the world we were born into was a world in the middle of the american century. >> we look forward to it. and i look forward to you being done with writing the book. still ahead on "morning joe," another state that rushed to reopen during the pandemic reaches a grim marker in terms of deaths. we'll get the latest on the u.s. response. and friday, the morning after joe biden accepts the democratic nomination, the woman
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hello, everybody. 100 years ago women earned the right to vote with the passage of the 19th amendment. it took decades of marching, organizing and standing up to folks who thought that democracy should be of, by and for only some of the people. and then we had to fight for decades more to ensure that women of color could cast their ballots as well. these victories were hard won, but the struggle was worth it, because our fore mothers knew that our vote is our voice. >> 100 years ago on august 18th, 1920, the 19th amendment was
ratified. guaranteeing that the right of citizens in the united states to vote shall not be denied or abridged by any state on account of sex. joining us now former white house director of communications for president obama and for hillary clinton's 2016 campaign, jennifer palmeri, author of the new book "she pro claims". also with us, editor at large for the nonprofit news room the 19th, errin haines. good to have you both. errin i'll start with you because the 19th news room, named after an important moment in history. >> absolutely, mika. we do mark the ratification of the 19th amendment today, it is the amendment that our news room
is named for but with an asterisk. the reason we have that is in recognition of the women of color who did have to fight twice as hard for the right to vote even though they were right there shoulder to shoulder with suffrages, but would not get the right to vote until four more decades, 1965. while it is important to mark this centennial, it is a milestone, a landmark, we must do that in taking the opportunity to tell the full truth about the 19th amendment so we move forward as a country together as women. >> absolutely worth remembering and commemorating and respecting this moment in history. jen, as we look back, we also look forward. how do you think women are galvanizing today in this next
election? do you think the turnout will be something different than we've ever seen before or maybe something like the midterms? >> the midterms are what we saw we had never seen before, we had sort of three big benchmarks, one was the women's march in 2017, the second was the midterm turnout and the third was the bonkers turnout, if you will, for joe biden on super tuesday and the amount of women that turned out to vote then. and it -- you know, we're just not going back. i felt that -- the moment i saw the turnout in 2017 for the women's march was there was something about hillary losing to this guy that told women at our gut we are playing by the wrong set of rules if we can have this kind of outcome in america. and as michelle obama said last night, if hillary can win by 3 million votes and still lose the
presidency we are doing this wrong and you see women asserting themselves in ways they haven't done before. in my book i try to draw lessons from the suffrage fight one is when women ban together and fight with each other, they have enormous power to change the world. and when we pit ourselves against each other, against other marginalized populations as errin described we hold each other back. and what's great about the movement right now is all women, all people of color fighting together because of the same power systems that keep women from reaching our potential are the same people keeping all people of color from doing so. >> errin, it's willie, the spread among women is 19 points
for joe biden. we knew for a long time that joe biden was going to select a woman to be his running mate but what do you think the selection of this woman, senator kamala harris, a woman of color, a prominent senator, elevating her to the national ticket what do you think that does to galvanize women of color. i'm thinking senator doug jones of alabama said i'm here because suburban women and black women put me here because they turned out in my special election. what do you think kamala harris on the ticket means to joe biden's prospect with women? >> you know, willie, it was interesting. senator harris and the interview i had with her on friday, said by joe biden picking her, she called it an audacious move but said he moved this move forward
d by decades. i know a lot of black women voters and organizers i've spoken to were calling for a black woman, we're thrilled to see the choice of senator kamala harris because of the combination of her qualifications but also livid experience as a black women. we know when black women vote they do it not only for themselves and their households but for their race, community and country. so when black women vote, it pushes us forward as a society. and so, you know, the choice of kamala harris is something we're already seeing in some polling that is energizing some voters. i think it is important to ask because i am hearing black women asking because of 2016 because you saw 53% of white women voting for president trump over hillary clinton, they are wondering if white women are going to be excited and get on board with joe biden's choice of the woman of kamala harris as his running mate.
will they get behind the black women excited about this ticket in the same way that black women got behind hillary clinton. 94% of black women voted for hillary clinton in 2016. so they're wondering if that will be the case in 2020. >> and last week president trump tweeted this, he did it again, the suburban housewife will be voting for me. they want safety and are thrilled that i ended the long-running program where low income housing would invade their neighborhood. biden would reinstall it in a bigger form with cory booker in charge. here he is yesterday during his trip to wisconsin. >> i keep hearing about suburban women. i made the -- [ cheers ] >> you know, in one speech
recently i called you suburban housewives and they all loved it but they said, sir, i don't know if that's politically correct. i said, don't worry about it they'll get over it. right. >> jen, are women going to get over that? >> most of us are not. you saw the 19 point gender gap, most of us are not. and there are a few woman, i'm sure you're right, there are white women who will continue to support donald trump and embrace the suburban housewife. it's really that mon kerr. it's telling he talks about cory booker in that tweet because cory booker is really popular with suburban women. why is he a united states senator? because suburban women in new jersey vote for him. it's obviously really troubling him because he keeps coming back to this, trying to use ads to
scare women into voting for him and it's not working. they're on their, i believe, fourth round of ads and that gender gap keeps moving in biden's direction. >> in that comment so much racism. thank you both very much for being on the show this morning. and coming up, the controversial head of the u.s. postal service agrees to testify to house lawmakers as president trump denies claims that he's trying to cripple the agency for his own political use, even though he said that's what he was going to do. kasie hunt joins us with her latest reporting. "morning joe" is coming right back.
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authoritarianism has taken root in our country. together we must build a nation that is more equitable, more compassionate, and more inclusive. i know that joe biden will begin that fight on day one. to everyone who supported other candidates in the primary, and to those who may have voted for donald trump in the last election, the future of our democracy is at stake. >> obviously that's bernie sanders, joe biden's chief competitor during the 2020 campaign. and, you know, jason, i -- i've always discounted endorsements, endorsements don't really matter most of the time. what one politician says about another politician it just doesn't really push somebody to the polls. i'll make an exception there when bernie sanders reaches
across the aisle and says to his fervent supporters, hey, this guy is going to be fighting for us on day one, i think that may actually have an impact in this election. >> well, you know, i got to admit, joe, and this is one of the myths about sanders that i think people forget. more sanders voters voted for hillary clinton in 2016 than hillary clinton voters voted for obama in 2008. i think there's a loudness of some bernie sanders supporters that are louder than the most progressive voters. i think what's significant about sanders' speech last night, the way he talked about joe biden, this guy is going to listen to me, work with me. joe biden has done a very good job of integrating sanders'
supporters, advocates, policy people into his campaign. i think anybody can be honestly clear in saying bernie sanders is way more in for joe biden than he was for hillary clinton in 2016, and while we're not going to have the huge rallies we had in the past that helps for many of his team, many organizers on the ground to feel like bernie is okay with this guy and we can be enthusiastic about him. >> and jonathan lemire, this is an example of where having a virtual convention for either party stops reporters from going onto the floor talking to the sanders supporter who says no, joe biden is a sellout and you find the two or three or four people, which reporters will do, fiebd the two or three or four people that disagree with and suddenly networks and newspapers are quoting those people. in this case perhaps because it's a virtual convention but certainly in large part because of bernie's speech last night,
this democratic party looks more yuan f unified than it did in 2016 or even 2008 when there was a split between hillary and barack obama. >> there's no question that there are downsides to the virtual convention. as we noted earlier, there was thought that things were slow last night, some of the musical interludes didn't land. and we'll be deprived of some of the things that make the convention so special. imagine two nights from now when kamala harris is announced as the candidate for vp, the crowd shots. last night they're probably glad to not have those images. remember in 2016, there was a lot of tension in the crowd there in philadelphia. some bernie sanders saupporters were not on board with hillary clinton and that became a news story there for a couple of
days. that is avoided because we're not seeing those shots here. i think we also shouldn't underestimate part of the reason why bernie sanders is -- went much more quietly this time around is because there's a personal relationship between him and joe biden, they get along. while things were tenser between he and secretary clinton and it can't be overstated the value of bringing progressives into the tends here. we'll hear from representative alexandria ocasio-cortez. she's speaking tonight at the convention as part of the effort as well. >> the keynote address for night two of the democratic national convention will be given by dr. jill biden who will be delivering her speech live from bran bran brandywine high school in wilmington, delaware where she was an english teacher. here now is an exclusive first look at the video that will introduce dr. biden. >> when she was second lady,
jill told me she would like to continue teaching at community college. and i said, that's insane. you cannot possibly do that. >> i said, i know i can do both jobs. >> i never saw her on any day of the week where she wasn't carrying a huge stack of papers to grade. >> as second lady, she was teaching full-time for eight years, 15 credits a semester. >> these were students who wanted to be in your classroom and i saw their tenacity and they were taking care of children, just like i had done. >> she gave 100% from her energy to the students. she's a great teacher. >> teaching is not what jill does, it's who she is. jill just simply cares. >> mika, when you were interviewing jill early in the campaign, and you were asking her about those days when she was the second lady and she was
also teaching -- >> community college, yep. >> -- it was so funny. she would tell us stories of kids, two, three, four weeks in would come up and be like, i saw you on tv. who are you again? >> or i saw you standing next to michelle obama. >> what's she like? >> what's she like? yeah, no, she -- that just resonates so much with me, her story. i love it. >> really moving. >> the former second lady will be our guest tomorrow morning here on "morning joe." look forward to that. still ahead this morning, "the washington post" robert costa joins us with his latest reporting on how the biden campaign plans to fight efforts to undermine the vote. plus, eugene robinson with his new column after michelle obama's dnc speech entitled "for someone who says she hates politics, michelle obama is a political power house."
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say michelle obama stuck the landing. >> michelle obama as she said doesn't like politics and she said that this speech was her main contribution to the biden campaign. it was a heck of a contribution. she really flayed, sliced and diced, donald trump. >> that was president trump before michelle obama's speech at the dnc last night compared to what you just saw analysis by fox news immediately following the first lady's address. welcome back to "morning joe," it's tuesday, august 18th, along with joe, willie and me we have host of kasie dc on msnbc, kasie hunt. political reporter for "the washington post" and msnbc political analyst robert costa, the moderator of washington week on pbs. associate editor of "the washington post," and msnbc political analyst, eugene
robinson. and white house reporter for the associated press, jonathan lemire is back with us as well. >> you know gene robinson you wrote a column about michelle obama's speech and -- >> he liked it. >> -- you said, for somebody who hates politics she's darn good at it. and i think that's probably what makes her so good at it is the fact that most people when they look at michelle obama speak, when they saw her over the past eight years, realized that you know what, she doesn't like the game of politics. i think that makes her more appealing as -- actually, as a political speaker. >> yeah. i think it gives her a credibility that politicians don't have, and i certainly believe her when she says she hates politics. but she is good at it. she, i thought, was particularly good in this new normal format for the conventions where
everybody is speaking from their living room or a sort of, you know, podium placed nowhere and talking into the camera. because she has that ability to kind of come right through the camera into your living room and speak to you as if one on one. she makes that connection. very, very well, and -- i mean, we've seen her do it in front of big audiences. i just thought it was particularly effective in this setting. so if you watch the whole evening, if you sort of -- your expectation built toward the keynote address, i think you were not disappointed. i love the way she sliced and diced donald trump and only mentioned his name once. which i thought was one of the bits of shade that she casually tossed off in a very sort of almost sweet way.
>> here's a little more of what we saw last night from the former first lady michelle obama. >> more than 150,000 people have died and our economy is in shambles because of a virus that this president downplayed for too long. whenever we look to this white house for some leadership or consolation or any semblance of steadiness, what we get instead is chaos, division, and a total and utter lack of empathy. if you take one thing from my words tonight, it is this. if you think things cannot possibly get worse, trust me, they can and they will. if we don't make a change in this election. if we have any hope of ending this chaos, we have got to vote for joe biden like our lives depend on it. i know joe.
he is a profoundly decent man, guided by faith. he was a terrific vice president. he knows what it takes to rescue an economy, beat back a pandemic, and lead our country. and he listens. he will tell the truth. and trust science. he will make smart plans and manage a good team. and he will govern as someone who's lived a life that the rest of us can recognize. >> so kasie hunt, as i said earlier, bernie sanders and others, people you cover every day on capitol hill made policy cases for joe biden and tried to bring in the progressive wing of the party saying this is too important not to get behind joe biden but what the former first lady did last night in her speech was to speak to the soul of the country, soul of america, to borrow a phrase from john
meacham, to talk about character, who we are, who we can be still, and do it in a way only she can do. it was a little strange we didn't know what to expect when eva longoria came out, but i think people got used to the format and you have michelle obama to close, it was a big night, probably the moment everyone will remember from the first night of the convention was her speech. >> i think that was the goal here. if you look at the speakers that came before michelle obama, it was adding up to this idea that last night, and especially michelle obama's speech, was supposed to be bigger than the politics that all of us have been living through in the trump administration, where every day, every tweet, it all is frenzied and chaotic but also in a way
feels small day in, day out. you talk about bernie sanders, there was an important mission for democrats in their view behind what they did with him as well. he is somebody who's been followed by a lot of the left wing of the party, although that doesn't capture exactly his supporters, but they have been people who are very energized, focused on his ideas, who have been activists in the party, outside the party, there are people that tend to pay close attention to politics and it's clear democrats thought bringing them into the fold, making them feel included in a joe biden convention was important but michelle obama's role was different. michelle obama's role was to speak to them and also disaffected republicans like john kasich had. and also to simply speak to americans that have been disengaged from the process. she talked about people who didn't vote in 2016 and that helps explain why donald trump got elected in the first place.
she is somebody who appeals to, and i think directed her speech, at all americans who spent the last six months at home struggling for their own reasons, maybe they lost a family member, maybe they're struggling with trying to teach their school age children and also going to work and suddenly they're paying attention to flic politics when they didn't think it mattered to them before and the message the way it was delivered, the messenger, i think all contributed to that sense most people came away with after watching michelle obama's speech. all women in politics, i'm sure michelle obama knows this better than anyone, it's easier to be a woman who's insisting i'm not seeking political power, it's easier for people to come after you when you say i'm looking for the power. michelle obama doesn't want to be part of politics, she was happy to leave the white house,
i think that also makes her a strong messenger in favor of someone else trying to get the job, in this case joe biden. >> the dnc featured long-time members of the republican party sounding off against president trump and urging americans to vote for joe biden. the group included former new jersey governor, christine todd whitman, former republican congressman, susan moll for thatty. ceo meg wittmann and trump's rival, former ohio governor, john kasich. >> this isn't about republican or democrat. it's about a person. a person decent enough, stable enough, strong enough to get our economy back on track. >> i've known donald trump for most of my political career, so disappointing and lately so disturbing. >> i'm a long-time republican and a long-time ceo and let me tell you donald trump has no
clue how to run a business, let alone an economy. >> i'm a life-long republican but that attachment holds second place to my responsibility to my country. that's why i've chosen to appear at this convention. in normal times, something like this would probably never happen, but these are not normal times. many of us can't imagine four more years going down this path. and that's why i'm asking you to join with me in choosing a better way forward. >>. >> in response the trump campaign issued a statement saying in part, quote, the four republicans featured at the democrat convention tonight are nothing but useful idiots for the radical left. >> that is a funny statement when you consider that while john kasich was fighting his guts out, while kasich was
working with those of us who had just gotten to congress and we are all putting our political lives on the line to balance a federal budget, to cut spending, to return power, money and authority back to states and localities, kasich, while he was leading that charge to balance the budget for the first time in a generation, and did it four years in a row, it hasn't been done in 100 years. while he was doing that, donald trump was giving money to charlie wrangle, to anthony weiner. basically to people who were fighting all of us conservatives who were trying to balance a budget and return more power, get it out of washington, and
get it back to the people, back to the states, back to the local governments. back to the people. and so, whoever the idiot was that wrote the useful idiot that wrote that for a guy who was a life long democrat who decided to switch to the republican party when he thought racism and birtherism would help him get the nomination, you're ignorant of history, don't know what you're talking about. susan molinari, knew her as well. she was on the front lines fighting just as hard for the conservative values that the republican party used to stand for. yesterday we had george will and ann applebalm and david frum on the show talking about balancing the budget, small government, returning power and authority
back to the states. challenging the imperial presidency, trying to make sure that article 1 powers were protected and preserved, all of the things that donald trump has worked hard against, even before this pandemic, running up the biggest deficits ever, the biggest federal debt ever, running up year after year the biggest budget ever, taking more power away unkons fusiconstitut from article i branch of government. this is -- again, it's you have people that have been considered conservatives their entire life, who will only be considered useful pawns of the radical left by people who have become members of a personality cult, who valued more power and the acceptance of donald trump than
conservative values, again, that this party once held dear. robert costa, it was interesting to see those republicans speak last night. also interesting to hear michelle obama talking about the need to get out and vote. there's quite a back and forth. the democrats are promising their supporters they're going to do two things at once. one, they're going to work hard to get out the vote, get the people out who didn't vote as much four years ago, as they should have. and then, on the other hand, they're assuring their supporters, they're assuring their voters that they're going to fight hard to protect the right to vote from donald trump and republicans who seem to be doing whatever they can to make voting harder. >> joe, here's why the republican remarks matter from last night. going back to 2016, i used to go
to suburban starbucks in any city i was in, and i would meet a certain type of middle class to upper middle class republican voter. and i would write down in my notebook that these were, quote, john kasich republicans. when asked who they were supporting they would almost never say donald trump they would say i'm a john kasich republican. when i said if it comes down to donald trump or secretary clinton, who are you going to go with? they said i'm a john kasich republican but i'll probably go with trump. they were maybe conservative socially, maybe moderate, but it was about a temperament. these are voters that the trump campaign and biden campaign know are out there. i sat down with the biden campaign manager, and talked about how the biden coalition is
trying to reach out to these john kasich republicans, people like meg whitman, whether they're from a suburb or a city have a business type mind, careers, and do believe in norms. last night, beyond the first lady's speech and senator sanders trying to unite the left, this is an overture to those types of voters and trying to give them an excuse, a reason to turn around from president trump. >> jonathan lemire, just this morning in the last hour or so we've seen more strategy from the trump campaign as it tries to get its arms around running against joe biden. they're up with a new ad that goes after his mental faculties as we said many times on the show probably not an argument the president wants to have, there are more clips of him than of joe biden. and also now, tweeting about the
obama/biden white house and the response to the h1n1 virus of 2010, saying the response was terrible. the cdc said about 12,000 people died and we're at 170,000 deaths in this country from covid-19. so what is, if there is one, the strategy from the trump campaign as it watches this democratic national convention as it talks about joe biden? >> first of all, on the tweet it's classic trump deflection, don't look at me, look at you, that was on display with the debate with hillary clinton, where he declared i'm not the puppet you're the puppet. and we've seen him do it ever since. the trump campaign is struggling a bit trying to land blows. first part of the answer is they have in the recent days and weeks been encouraged by the trend lines, feel they have closed the gap on the president
in battleground states, they acknowledge they're losing but the deficits have shrunk. they're trying to say that president trump is part of the signal despite the statistics, the country is overcoming the coronavirus pandemic, the economy is reopening, they want him on display exhibiting that by him being on the road. we talked about it, he was in minnesota and wisconsin yesterday. and he'll be in iowa today and pennsylvania later in the week. they want him on the road while saying that joe biden is remaining largely in his basement in delaware. that's their argument. but they haven't been able to land any sort of attacks here. the attacks on the mental fitness have gone nowhere. attacks on china, nowhere. hunter biden is a name we haven't heard because that's ineffective. and now joe biden and kamala harris are tools of the left
wing, they like the argument but it's not one the president has been able to stick to with any consistency. so there's flailing here. even though there's some trends in in the race headed their direction, they haven't been able to land any blows and they fully expect the democrats will get a sizable bump coming out of the convention which puts pressure on the republicans to do the same next week. >> it'll be interesting to see if there's a bump with this kind of convention. >> it's tough. >> yes. interesting to see if there's a bump from the democratic or republican convention. hard to say. kasie, obviously over the past several days washington has been abuzz about donald trump's stated plans to block any funding for the post office. republicans have shamefully accused democrats of pushing a conspiracy theory. and "the wall street journal"
editorial page embarrassed themselves by taking that bait. this is the same page that condemned donald trump for his conspiracy theory about the election being rigged. and then it was that same donald trump who said this at the end of last week, if we don't make a deal, that means they don't get the money. that means they can't have universal mail-in voting. they just can't have it. president of the united states, kasie, it's not a conspiracy theory if the guy in charge admits it on tv. so, what are the democrats planning this week to counter donald trump's conspiracy theory about rigged elections and mail-in voting and dejoy going along with it? >> it's impossible to describe as louis dejoy has this was an
inadvertent set of slow downs at the post office when you have the president of the united states saying what he's looking for, we can report the facts of what he said and it's straightforward for american voters. and democrats as we reported are bringing the house back to vote on funding for this. republicans yesterday announced that they're planning on pulling together a bill -- their version of coronavirus relief plus that money for the postal service. democrats are dismissing that as okay, you know, fine, when is that actually going to become law? when are you going to vote on it? i think it illustrates the pressure that republicans are under, particularly mitch mcconnell, from some of his vulnerable republicans who are worried about people in maine getting prescriptions, worried about people in rural colorado being able to get their paychecks quickly enough or pay their bills with the u.s. mail. this is -- and you know we've been talking about this
throughout the week as we've been covering the story. this, kind of like the virus in a way, effects every american. i certainly have been dealing with mail that has been delayed or weirdly routed, my family members have. if it's happening to us in d.c., a big city, imagine the challenges faced by people who live farther away and have a harder time than we do getting other companies, fed ex, ups, to deliver on the last mile deliveries. so this becomes something that's very hard to explain. it is putting political pressure on republicans to do something about it and the president talking about it the way he is doesn't make it any easier for them as they struggle in their own re-election fights. >> and to "the wall street journal" who was saying this is a conspiracy theory, you should probably talk to seniors whose
mail has been delayed, talk to vets whose mail has been delayed. talk to people in rural america whose mail has been delayed. a lot of people depend on medicine sent by the united states post office. a conspiracy theory? again, donald trump, president of the united states, who again you condemned for his conspiracy theory about mail-in voting and said if he really thinks he's going to lose, which he does, he should step aside and let somebody else run for president. donald trump said last week, if we i don't make a deal that means they don't get the money. that means they don't have universal mail-in voting. they just can't have it. quite a conspiracy theory there that the president of the united states admits outloud. and gene robinson, you know who's not following the president's line? republican senators who are up for re-election this year. mitch mcconnell, what does he
say in we'll take care of them. they're going to get their money. don't worry about it, they're going to get their money. lindsey graham in south carolina. here are two people you don't expect to cross the president. lindsey graham saying, they need their money. lindsey is tied right now in south carolina in a senate race according to a public poll. no, the postoffice needs their money. mitt romney saying the same thing. so it seems like the president and mr. dejoy are out on their own right now in doing whatever they can to slow down the united states postal service, which i got to add for every republican senator running in a contested race, pew found them to be the most beloved agency in america. 91% of americans approve of the job the united states postal service is doing. it's not a cheesy trump hotel.
they're not in it to make money. they're in it to serve americans. go ahead, gene, i've talked too much again. >> i see why donald trump thinks, in his warped thinking why he thinks he's doing this. but it is true insanity to run against an institution that every american depends on. and that, as you said, is so popular is the postal service. he's also in this crusade to mess up mail in voting. the president is also up against postal workers who have an incredible sense of mission, at least the postal workers that i speak with. they are really determined to do their jobs. so i think number one he's likely to be less effective in this effort to hamstring the postal service than he expects
to be. the president. because they're going to get the mail to americans however they need to do it. that is their mission. and second, he just angering people and dismaying senators like lindsey graham who's in the fight of his life, really, this time. jaime harrison is really, really on his tail and very close to tied to lindsey graham in south carolina. that is not where lindsey graham wants to be at this point in this campaign, not where the republican party wants to be at this point in this campaign. and the president in his own selfish interest is making things worse for his party. >> bob costa, we know how congress is handling this, kasie let me get bob in and i'll hop
to you. we know congress is going to have hearings they want to push more money to the united states postal service. but how is the biden campaign approaching this? i know you wrote a piece about this where the biden campaign said it's going to be the largest voter protection in history. what does that mean? how do they pull it off? >> it means they're trying to make a play for the deep south where the issues could be significant. they were significant in 2018 in a place like georgia with stacey abrams lost the race against brian kemp, now the governor. what you're seeing from the democratic party is a pitch to those southern voters they're going to protect the votes, protect the rights, boost them on the economic and health front. that's why tonight i'm paying attention to president clinton, he'll make a speech at the democratic national convention. the biden campaign is looking, when you talk about the
protection efforts and the map in general they want to play in a place like texas or georgia. maybe even bring south carolina into the conversation, perhaps not as a presidential state at this point but a state that can be competitive and part of that argument is going to be voting rights in addition to the usual issues such as the economy. >> so to pick up on that point about south carolina and what eugene was saying in addition to bob, it's just stunning to think about lindsey graham, somebody who altered his entire political persona, somebody who was a john mccain accolite and basically became a trump aclite because of the realities of him being in office, and it underscores to me that this president has only ever been out for himself. and it's kind of stunning when you think about other party leaders have handled things like
this. the republican party has spent the entire last three to four years basically trying to get as close to donald trump as possible to prevent any daylight between them and what are they getting for it. they are not getting somebody who is looking out for them, or who is thinking beyond himself at all. that's the situation they find themselves in, for lindsey graham to now be struggling in his re-election fight, needing something from the president and the president being like, this is all about me. it is a stunning example of something we have been reporting out i think for the last several years of this administration, about how the president thinks about politics. it is not about some broader set of ideas. it is just about him at the expense of everybody else. >> in this case, mika, as the wall street journal editorial page said a couple weeks ago, he's acting like he's going to lose.
so the exercise hurting lindsey graham in south carolina where so many people in rural south carolina depend on the post office, just like they do in corey gardner's colorado, and martha mcsally's arizona and susan collins' maine, and thom tillis' north carolina, donald trump is only doing this to cover himself because they fear he's going to lose the election. >> right. >> it's not like this strategy is going to end up doing anything but making democrats and republicans voting against donald trump and these republican candidates even more focused on their efforts. so he's throwing the republican senators under the bus for no other reason than to try to come up with an excuse for why he's going to lose. and in the process, there will be -- i'm looking to montana, a state that really depends on the united states post office. a rural state like montana,
there will be an election that may be swung by issues like this, and donald trump just doesn't give a damn. >> it's showing republican senators who have blindly stood by him, let every stop sign he's run through go by, it's showing how much he doesn't care about them. and that he will not be there for them, and no matter how much they serve him, he will do nothing for them and if he needs to step on them and ruin their campaigns and lose their elections for himself, he'll do it. so maybe they need that lesson. i don't know why they can't see what's in front of their face -- >> too late i think. >> -- there you go. robert costa, thank you for your reporting. eugene robinson we'll read your latest post. and still ahead, the u.s. surpasses 170,000 deaths
nationwide, and we'll speak with someone who is participating in a covid vaccine trial. we'll find out what that's like. you're watching "morning joe." we'll be right back. we'll be right back. ♪ ♪ perfect. -you're welcome. i love it. how'd you do all this? told ya! wayfair. let's talk dining tables. yes! blow it up. ♪ wayfair you've got just what i need ♪
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turn your wish list into a checklist, with internet essentials from comcast. when you're connected, you're ready for anything. right now to deal with how do we learn from a what we had and protect the vulnerable. >> my dad was a healthy 65-year-old. his only preexisting condition was trusting donald trump and for that he paid with his life. the coronavirus has made it clear that there are two americas, the america that donald trump lives in and the america that my father died in. donald trump may not have caused the coronavirus, but his dishonesty and his irresponsible actions made it so much worse. >> more than 170,000 americans
are dead from the pandemic over the past five or six months are 170,000 dead americans, would you still report, suggest that this has been a success story? >> yes. there's a lot of challenges. this has been a global pandemic, a lot of challenges, the first phase of it, people didn't know what to expect, a lot of it was happening in different states, the president was able to rush the supplies we needed now we're in the middle phase we're using the knowledge we have right now to deal with strategically how do we learn from what we had and protect the vulnerable. >> wow. jared kushner just completely rewriting how they responded to the pandemic, which was to not take it seriously and say it was going to go away and to not mobilize the defense production act and get testing nationalized to the people and do contact tracing and do what other countries did to bring the numbers down so kids could go back to school and at 170,000
dead that's not good news. and that from the guy who said on national television months ago by july we'll be rocking and rolling again. if this is rocking and rolling, i don't know what good news looks like because this is not good. and we are headed in the strong directi -- in the wrong direction, jared kushner. so you heard the remarks yesterday from a woman from arizona whose father is among the fatalities from the coronavirus here in the u.s. and as cases continue to surge across the u.s., yesterday texas became the fourth state to surpass 10,000 confirmed covid-19 deaths. according to "the texas tribune," about four in every five of those deaths were reported after june 1st. in may texas embarked on one of
the fastest reopenings in the country before a spike in cases forced republican governor greg abbott to backtrack and impose a statewide mask order. august has seen an improving outlook, although experts say texas's death toll is certain to be an undercount given insufficient testing, specifically at the beginning of the pandemic. joining us is dr. dave campbell and professor walter isaacson. he's here in a different capacity today, he's participating in a covid-19 vaccine trial for pfizer. i can't wait to hear about that. but dr. campbell, set the stanl there are a lot of vaccines working through several stages of development right now. russia claims it has a vaccine
ready to go, is that true, what's the status of vaccines? >> first professor isaacson, congratulations on being willing to participate. i think that's a bold move that everybody should look at and aspire to. there are over 160 vaccines in various phases of development across the world and in the united states there are three in the phase three clinical trials you have moderna, pfizer and oxford. and if you look at the russian vaccine, the sputnik 5, it was granted regulatory approval by the minister of health in russia, i think it was august 11th, and they will be entering their phase three clinical trials soon, this month. and that's the rub, is they haven't gotten into phase three trials but they're announcing regulatory approval, which is something that the united states food and drug administration count
doesn't do. they like to see the final phase of clinical trials for the vaccines to be well under way. we can anticipate, mika, some more discussion about emergency use authorizations in the united states as the fall unfolds and as we see the phase three trials unfold. so that's where we are right now with vaccines. and everybody is optimistic, i must say, it's a wonderful spread of options out there with many companies. we have operation warp speed that thus far has funded $9 billion of testing and getting ready to distribution. we have mckesson, the largest company that manages the flu vaccines has now been tagged as the company that will be helping to distribute these vaccines in the united states once they become available. >> willie? >> so walter we usually talk to
you about history but how fascinating to have you here as someone participating in the pfizer vaccine trial. what does it mean exactly to participate in a trial and how did you end up here? >> well, it just means you go down to the hospital down the road here, one of many places probably 200 places in this country that are doing trials, dr. francis collins was urging people go to coronavirusprevention.org online and sign up for trials. so i'm writing a book about the use of rna and dna to find new ways to fight viruses. i said, why not do it. i went online, signed up and the next day i got a phone call. so i got a very long needle injected into my arm, that was about two and a half weeks ago, i'm going back for the booster on monday. so far my arm still hurts but i haven't grown any extra fingers or anything. and what an rna vaccine does and
would be one of the ones that i think will be ready to be considered in the data in october, meaning not too long from now, is instead of putting some deactivated virus in you or some reengineered virus, it just injecting rna into your cells and the rna makes the spike protein, harmless version of it, so that you can build your own immunity to the spike protein. so the main thing they're looking for is to make sure that minorities, people of color, others do it. i can understand why you may not want yourself to be experiments on, but i think they have a problem signing up people in minority and african-american communities so i hope that's going to come along, too. >> so walter, you're participating in this but you're also covering it. so when you talk to the doctors
about the prospect for this vaccine and other vaccines do they share the optimism that dr. dave shared with us, that there may be something by the beginning of next year? >> yeah. i think the pfizer ceo has said publically, and certainly i've heard that the data from the pfizer trial and one that's also an rna vaccine from moderna, and one that uses a virus transport mechanism to get in, that's called the oxford vaccine, all three of those are in phase three clinical trial with tens of thousands of people. and i think by the end of october we are going to have data. now this is going to cause one of the next political controversies because when we do have that data, you know, some people are going to say let's make the vaccine available and some say let's wait until we're sure it's more safe. but i think we'll have data knowing which works by the
middle of october. >> yesterday the world health organization said it was concerned that spread of the coronavirus was being driven by people in their 20s, 30s and 40s, many of which were unaware that they were infected, supposing a danger to vulnerable groups. officials said the proportion of younger people among those infected had risen globally putting at risk vulnerable sectors of the population worldwide, including the elderly and sick people in densely populated areas with weak health services. dr. dave, there's a lot of issues, you know, connected to that if you would like to comment. but there's also a need for testing in the u.s. i know the fda is authorizing a saliva test for covid-19. i know the white house uses a quick test. the american people could use some testing that's quick. where are we with that?
>> first, the fact that there are lots of young people infected and certainly transmitting it to older folks as well established grave concern and start memorial day, and the saliva test that just came out is an opportunity for a more rapid test without having the deep nasal swab that if anybody hasn't had it yet you will remember that experience, certainly. and that test is used in part with the nba trainers and team members and administrators, it is a test that they say, with three hours of lead time they can test 92 subjects and come back with the test and they're hoping to make that quicker. it's going to be relatively inexpensive. everybody is hoping by late august, maybe september we'll have a saliva test rather than
the deep nasal swab as an option to increase our testing numbers rather than what we're witnessing now, which is a drop in the testing numbers even though we're going into the fall with flu season, with schools opening and kids going to school and we know now kids are not immune and they are transmitters of disease and can get sick. >> exactly. like the report of people in the 20s, 30s, 40s, passing it around, don't know they have it, a quick test would dramatically change our ability to reopen the country. we're way behind. if they had it, things could happen, we could go to work, go to school, people could get tested every day. we don't have anything close to it and the president doesn't want testing because he doesn't want high numbers of the coronavirus, which is downright
sick. dr. dave campbell thank you for being on. new york governor, andrew cuomo delivered a blistering speech criticizing the white house's response to the coronavirus pandemic. take a listen. >> our nation is in crisis, and in many ways covid is just a metaphor. a virus attacks when the body is week and when it cannot defend itself. over these past few years america's body of politics has been weakened. only a strong body can fight off the virus. and america's divisions weakened it. donald trump didn't create the initial division. the division created trump. he only made it worse. americans learned a critical lesson, how vulnerable we are when we are divided, and how many lives can be lost when our government is incompetent. >> president trump fired back at
cuomo last night accusing the governor of being responsible for thousands of deaths in nursing homes. a reference to cuomo's policy at the time that ordered nursing homes to accept coronavirus patients from hospitals, a measure designed to free up hospital beds because they were running out of space. trump took to twitter writing now ap estimates that the real cuomo number of people killed because of his total incompetence is 11,000 not the 6,000 originally thought. joining us now the governor of michigan, gretchen whitmer who also spoke at the dnc last night. governor thank you for being on the show this morning. i think, given the topic we're discussing now, i would like to first ask how your state is doing dealing with the coronavirus? >> we're in a stronger position than a lot of states because we followed the violence, we have universal mask mandate, we put out accurate information from the start and tried to do everything we could to save
lives. one of the things i think that put me in donald trump's eyes was early on i observed we'd all be better if we had a national strategy instead of 50 different policies in the united states. right we have 170,000 people have died americans from covid-19. we don't see any empathy, we don't see a national strategy, there's no national testing plan. we are months into this, and while donald trump didn't create the coronavirus, remember when leaders who used to say the buck stops here and we're going to have a plan and we're going to take care of everyone whether you voted for us or not, that's not what we're getting. that's why this election is so important. >> governor, whitmer, it's willie geist. you spoke at the convention last night. we want to get a snapshot from you of where michigan is. joe biden has been leading
consistently in polls there and you said kebtly it's going to be a tossup state, it's going to be tight. it went by 10,000 votes in 2016 for donald trump. what will people in your state, and i don't just mean democrats who may support you, but what will people be voting on in the state of michigan? what's right now at the center of their lives? >> well, we're voting on our lives and our livelihood. this is a crisis that has brought the biggest recession since the great depression. we have people who are out of work for longer and and more intense ways because of the mismanagement of this crisis. michiganers are like americans everywhere. we are good, hard-working american. we want a better life to our children. right now -- because of the competence coming out of the white house. i believe joe biden's message resonates but i don't think anyone should put this state in one column or the other. we have to keep our foot on the
gas through election day and through the close of the poll. the michiganers want a president who is decent, who understands the magnitude of the problem and they have the plan to solve it and make their lives better. that's precisely what joe biden offers. >> jonathan lemire. >> governor, we were talking earlier about the campaign has holding events. like today, they offered tickets, like in arizona, others are invite-only. we haven't seen him hold a big rally. that's out of fears for the virus but as the campaign said, some governors in battleground states aren't too keen on the idea. can you tell us, please, michigan is still a hotly contested state for this election. what are the guidelines that could per tine a political event like a rally or something like
it? and would donald trump be welcome to have one of those in your state? >> well, listen, the fact of the matter is this virus is still a really real threat in michigan and across the country. we know if you follow the science and listen to epidemiologists, congregating without masks, throwing your voice are precisely the conditions that covid-19 spreads. people that didn't believe that, seeing that is, in fact, the kind of circumstances that are -- we so we have limitations on gatherings, no more than ten people and in close spaces. 100 outside. that would mean that rallies, no matter who wants to have them, it would be dangerous and are precluded under michigan law right now. all of that being said, we know the president is likely to come to michigan at some point.
we recognize political speech is protected but we have to protect public health, too, and ask they do what everyone else is, preserve best practices. >> michigan governor, gretchen whitm whitmer, thank you. walter, before we go, i want to ask you about this attack on the postal service by the president himself and what seemingly corrupt moves have been made so far. you have written about post office and the history of the post office, benjamin franklin and why we have a post office. can you tell us about that and i guess why it relates to today? there are many who are passing out the idea that the post office is a business that's doing badly, end of story. >> i wrote about the post office
because a wrote a biography of ben franklin, who carried very much about science and vaccinations, smallpox vaccinations, but the great thing he did was created civic endeavors. he created things like the fire department, philadelphia, and then the lending library of philadelphia, the academy of the education of youth for philadelphia. a night watchman court. and he didn't say, let's always make sure they make a profit because he understood, you do these things for the common good. the thing he was most proud of was creating a postal service. he was a postmaster for the columbia period and the first postmaster general after we formed our country. and what he did when he built that post office, he tied desperate 13 colonies into one. he even coined the phrase, out of many one, because the postal system is what brought us
together. benjamin franklin was a printer, publisher, writer. so, he was able to have information that was spread through the colonies. and even for a while he helped drive the notion of what we now call net neutrality, because his competitor, at one point was the postmaster in philadelphia, william bradford, only let bradford's papers go through the post office for free. and franklin, after wrestling with it a bit, says, no, it has to be an open system. so, anybody who wants to spread information, can, and wants to connect, can. and whether it was scientific information from the american philosophical societies or -- it was designed for two reasons. to be a pretty good organization that could maybe break even at times, but mainly it was designed to make america a
united states, a nation. that's what would make ben franklin so, just, outraged right now, is it's being used for partisan purposes. people are undermining the most basic institution, an institution that is so important, it's in the constitution of the united states. >> walter, thank you very much. still ahead on "morning joe," former first lady michelle obama closes night one of the democratic national convention with a stinging rebuke of president trump, urging americans to vote like our lives depend on it. we'll play her remarks straight ahead on "morning joe." it's the 11:05 endless-orders migraine medicine ubrelvy for anytime, anywhere migraine strikes without worrying if it's too late or where you happen to be. one dose of ubrelvy can quickly stop a migraine in its tracks within two hours. unlike older medicines, ubrelvy is a pill that directly blocks cgrp protein
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>> donald trump is the wrong president for our country. he has had more than enough time to prove that he can do the job, but he is clearly in over his head. he cannot meet this moment. he simply cannot be who we need him to be for us. it is what it is. >> it is it what it is, michelle obama using those words from president trump in her keynote speech last night for the democratic national convention. good morning and welcome to "morning joe." it is tuesday, august 18th. along with joe, willie, welcome back, and me. we have white house reporter for the associated press, jonathan lemi lemire. politics and journalism professor at morgan state university, editor at the grio, jason johnson, and senior opinion writer at "the boston globe," an msnbc contributor, kimberly atkins is with us.
good to have you all. it's good to have willie back. you are not going to start talking about the red sox. >> no. willie's been on assignment. we can't really talk about where that assignment was but he's been on assignment. willie, the convention last night, judging from the reviews across the political spectrum was quite a success. you even had a couple of fox news anchors talking about dana parrino talking about how michelle obama stuck the landing and chris wallace talking about what a great contribution she gave to the biden campaign. that she splayed donald trump. >> first of all, it's great to be back. i'd rather be in a restaurant doing our show in milwaukee. it was a strange year. the convention was weird. we knew it was going to be weird. you had to get used to it for a while. putting theater criticism aside,
closing with michelle obama with opening acts that included republicans who have switched their minds and want to support joe biden over donald trump, you had the family of george floyd, you had victims of covid-19 illustrating donald trump's failings on all of that. the leadup, including bernie sanders which solidified the progressives who still may be a little disillusioned with joe biden, thinking he's too modera moderate. you couldn't put together a better package of speakers, however it came across through the taped messages, and we'll get into it, but closing with michelle obama who said again last night, i hate politics, but i think that's precisely why she's such a great speaker and great messenger because she lives somewhere above the political realm where she can speak as a human being, as a mother, a wife and former first lady about the failings of donald trump. >> mika, i thought it went off very well last night. it was a show.
and the show went off very well considering the circumstances of it. there were some people online that were talking about how it wasn't the most exciting thing in the world and the responses online, i thought, were fairly accurate. do you remember what these things were like when they were live? they were even more boring, even more staged. >> some of them, yes. >> people would get up there and drone on. mr. chairman, i hereby -- >> some people like that stuff. >> i suppose some really weird people do. i do not. i thought again for the first night, i thought it was a very good performance. as willie said, they had everybody from republicans to michelle obama to bernie sanders who really did deliver the most compelling message to progressives, which is, listen, the consequences of failure are
too high. there is -- though he did not quote general douglas macarthur, he, in fact, said, there's no substitute for victory. that was a message that he had for progressives. love joe biden, but right now, you need him. >> and the consequences for failure with the convention were high, especially when you have so much material. the speakers, as we said, spanned the political spectrum from bernie sanders and other former democrats, bernie sanders and michelle obama, making the case that america needs joe biden's leadership more now than ever. >> more than 150,000 people have died, and our economy is in shambles because of a virus that this president downplayed for too long. whenever we look to this white
house for some leadership or consolation or any semblance of steadiness, what we get inside is chaos, division and a total and utter lack of empathy. if you take one thing from my words tonight, it is this -- if you think things cannot possibly get worse, trust me, they can and they will if we don't make a change in this election. if we have any hope of ending this chaos, we have got to vote for joe biden like our lives depend on it. i know joe. he is a profoundly decent man, guided by faith. he was a terrific vice president. he knows what it takes to rescue an economy, beat back a pandemic and lead our country. and he listens. he will tell the truth and trust
science. he will make smart plans and manage a good team. and he will govern as someone who's lived a life that the rest of us can recognize. >> you know, kimberly atkins, it's fascinating that four years later, donald trump's message has been turned on its head. not just by michelle obama, but by 150, 160, 170,000 deaths. what did donald trump say to african-americans? what did he say to black voters four years ago? what do you have to lose? and last night michelle obama's message, after four years of death, after four years of economic devastation, what did michelle obama say? if you don't think things can get worse, you're wrong. they can. and that, especially for black voters, but for senior citizens
and for small business owners and for americans who have been devastated by this pandemic that donald trump has been playing down from the very beginning, those words likely resonated last night. >> it really did. you're absolutely right. the answer to the question trump posed four years ago, we've learned -- he actually said, what the hell do you have to lose? we've learned that the answer is, your livelihood, your jobs, your health care, and potentially your life. certainly now your ability to vote or be able to get your prescription drugs through the mail. michelle obama did a very good job of underscoring the urgency. look, we've been hearing for months now not just within the democratic party, all the factions and can they get energized and will joe biden be the right person? what you saw last night was from
republicans, from progressives, fro fromm michelle obama, saying whether or not joe biden was your guy in the primary, whether or not joe biden is the guy in your party, this is a moment that is urgent and requires your action. she used her own words about going high when others go low. she said that voters can go high by doing everything that they can by voting like their lives depend upon it. so, she put that there. that's the urgency. it's a pandemic. you may have to wear a mask. you may have to pack a dinner because you have to stand in line. but that was the call to action and she was the best messenger of that. she was the best speaker in 2016 in philadelphia, if you recall. she lit up that place. the electricity was just really hard to explain. and i didn't know how she could possibly bring that kind of smoke last night and she managed to do it.
>> yeah, the former first lady also delivered a message with her necklace, which said, simply, vote. earlier in the day in wisconsin, president trump asked, who wants to listen to michelle obama do a taped speech? well, some folks at fox news were listening. and here's the reaction after the speech from them. >> very difficult to try to connect with an audience without an actual audience there with you, but she has the ability to connect with people through the screen. and you just got the sense when you talk about authenticity, she has it in spades. i think that the dnc, if they look over the course of the night, the first virtual convention of our history, i think they would say that michelle obama stuck the landing. >> michelle obama, as she said, doesn't like politics, and she said that this speech was her main contribution to the biden campaign. it was a heck of a contribution. she really flayed, sliced and
diced donald trump. >> so, willie, dana perino, president bush's former press secretary said michelle obama stuck the landing and chris wallace talked about that being a heck of a contribution. to joe biden's -- to joe biden's election efforts. it really was. again, a speech that drew praise from all corners. >> it did. and she didn't get into policy. she did that, i think, deliberately. bernie sanders gave a long policy speech about progressive values and protecting those and why he believes joe biden will do that, which she was able to do, the former first lady, is to talk about the character of the country and that we're better than this and this is not a president who's up to the job that he was elected to do, closing with that line, it is what it is. still ahead on "morning joe," the president heads to wisconsin as polls show him trailing joe biden in that key
swing state. we'll have more on his efforts to counter program the dnc. you're watching "morning joe." " no matter where you live, where you live has never mattered more. for over 100 years, realtors® have been providing expert guidance, helping people find new places to dream and thrive. when you're ready... look for the r.
president trump attempted to counterprogram the dnc yesterday by stumping in wisconsin. a new poll from the badger state, by the way, shows joe biden continuing to hold a lee in that state. the latest morning consult poll finds biden in front of trump in wisconsin by six points, 49% to 43% among likely voters there. and looking at the poll's breakdown, biden is winning the suburbs by eight points, women by ten points, white, college educated by 15 points and they set up a place where he could speak to foerlgs when he landed which, again, not necessarily
safe in terms of social distancing guidelines, a small crowd. >> one of the things that really felt good about looking at the crowd at the trump rally was the fact that almost all of the people there were wearing masks, at least in the pictures i saw. jonathan lemire, we saw this happen in new hampshire where donald trump had to cancel an event because the crowds weren't as big as expected. this is a man use who'sed used going and seeing 5,000, 10,000 people at rallies. yesterday was a small crowd in oshkosh. perhaps that's because there's not the excitement out there for him there was four years ago or, perhaps, it's because americans understand even trump's most strident supporters understand, we are in the middle of a
pandemic and it's really not safe to go out and congregate around large crowds if you're an older american or if you have underlying conditions. >> what we're seeing here, these aren't rallies by the campaign's parlance. they're deliberately smaller. this is what you'll see from the president going forward, airport hangars. it gives him the feel of a rally, the connection with the crowd but not the size he's used to seeing. from my colleague who was on the ground yesterday, said mask wearing was inconsistent. some were, for sure, but not everyone. and the social distancing went out the window once air force one landed. the two takeaways from the president's appearances yesterday, wisconsin, a vital swing state. minnesota won where his campaign thinks they have a chance but they're down pretty significantly in those polls. one is the president was
considering a visit to the death site of george floyd and the governor of minneapolis warned the president not to do that for the fear of what it could mean and the optics of the community wanting him there. and secondly, the president in wisconsin said, i'm paraphrasing, the only way we could lose this election is if it were rigged. i think that's a message we all have to watch going forward. he's been planting those seeds, he's been sowing chaos with the post office, that we chronicled here on the show and he's leaning into that argument yesterday. in terms of his response to the convention last night, most of his tweets were singled out at new york governor cuomo, who was very critical of the president's response to the coronavirus pandemic. to echo what was said before, michelle obama saying she hates politics and delivering wicked, subtle at times, daggers to the president. using his name only once, i believe, using his own words, it is what it is. it's powerful and telling the president so far, doesn't say anything about her or, as a
final thought, what might have been the most powerful moment of the evening when they had some real people up there, some real people whose lives have been changed by the president's policies and response to covid, including one young woman with this, who said of her father who was a trump supporter, his only pre-existing condition was trusting donald trump and for that he paid with his life. he died of the coronavirus. >> that's harsh. so, jonathan, let me ask you. that event yesterday in an airport hangar was invitation-only? >> these were small groups. these were not widely distributed tickets. this was for locals, trump supporters, local groups in both states. he did two. one in wisconsin, one in minnesota. for now the trump campaign is shying away from trying to have a big rally. we saw what happened in tulsa. they didn't draw anywhere near the crowd they would have
expected and the health officials in that city believed the event helped spread covid-19 infections. as you mentioned, their other attempt at reboot was one in new hampshire where they canceled publicly because of rain and privately because they thought no one would show up. they're trying to have much smaller events trying to get the president back on the road. coming up on "morning joe," the efforts to shore up the 2020 election. strategist rick wilson joins us with his advice to democrats. "morning joe" is coming right back.
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it's entitled "saving freeman:truman, the cold war and the fight for western civilization." you're always reading. you spent your life studying history, presidential history, but why harry truman and why now? >> i was hunched over the desk, of course, because willie and i look at the dogs and try to pick -- when i wasn't looking --
it's a hard job but somebody has to do it. so when i wasn't doing that, yeah, eye been working on this book and working on it a long time. harry truman, of course, had an extraordinary biography written about him by david mccoughla several years ago. we obsess so much, and i obsess so much in my reading about world war ii and the greatness of winston churchill and fdr and eisenhower and the allied powers, but what happened after the war actually shaped our world as much as any presidency. truman, of course, had stalin, met stalin at the end of the war. and it's hard to remember, but the soviets were our allies.
took the brunt of the casualties during world war ii and immediately following the war, this guy who was a failed haberdasher from missouri, a simple man, had to actually lead western civilization in its fight against stalin's aggressive overtures across europe. and so it's a story of an accidental president. a guy who when fdr at the chicago convention phoned him and asked him to be his vice president said, go to hell. fdr, who wasn't used to being crossed responded back to him and said, well, if you want to break up the democratic party in the middle of a war, go ahead. and truman reluctantly decided to take that on. that was 1944. he becomes president in april of '45. he doesn't even know about the
atomic bomb. fdr had kept that from him. they only met a couple of times after he was selected to be on the ticket. he then had to make the decision, that fateful decision. going into 1947, greece and turkey were in danger, stalin and the soviets were looking to move westward, and it was harry truman who, after the british sent two notes, two diplomatic notes saying, we are exhausted, we can no longer defend greece, we can no longer defend turkey. harry truman had a decision to make, did the united states go back into their isolationist mode, which we've been in since george washington's farewell address, or did the united states actually create a doctrine, which was a follow-up to the madison -- or the monroe doctrine, and then would actually contain the soviet
threat. this is an incredible story of how he did that, how he did that with republican support who were isolationists at the time and did it with democratic support as well. willie, the world we live in right now, the foreign policy structures, whether you talk about nato or whether you talk about, again, the truman doctrine, the world we live in was shaped by this simple man from missouri. coming up on "morning joe," the mayor of chicago, lori lightfoot joins us after her appearance at the democratic national convention. her conversation with joe biden on racial justice as she deals with the crime crisis in her city.
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and to ensure social distancing. and the costs to our economy, to our state budget? mounting every day. we need to provide revenues now, to solve the problems we know are coming. democrat-controlled cities have shown that democrats plan and what they plan for america, if left-wing democrats can't run a city, why on earth would you
let them run your country? in chicago, the mayor literally raised up the drawbridges to prevent hoards of rioters of ransacking the city. this is the future that joe biden plans to bring to every city, town and suburb in our nation. >> wait, wait, wait, sam. i'm confused. he's been president for four years and he said he was going to take care of the, quote, american carnage. and it's interesting, when donald trump became president, crime was at a 50-year low. now it's not. four years in. are you safer today than you were four years ago which donald trump talked about american carnage? no. is crime lower than it was four -- no. >> carnage, 170,000 dead. >> if you're really rich, you are. if you're working class or middle class america, you're probably not. did you feel safer than you did four years ago?
no. more secure? no. this is awesome. we have a president of the united states that says he alone can fix it and he's mighty and powerful and this article 2 gives him ultimate power, he can do -- he's practically a dictator, he has complete control. he's blaming mayors. he's president for four years. and after promising to take care of -- oh, my gosh, the hoards of immigrants crossing the border. by the way, that was at a 50-year low as well until donald trump became president. and crime, he's going to take care of crime, he alone could fix it, remember that? no, no, actually, he didn't fix it. he made matters worse. and now he and his son-in-law are trying to blame local officials for what the president of the united states just can't do. >> yeah.
okay. that was president trump yesterday during a visit to two battleground states, blaming democrats for the recent surge in violence and a number of major u.s. cities. joining us now, the mayor of chicago, democrat lori lightfoot. she took part in a panel discussion with former vice president joe biden on racial justice during night one of the democratic convention. and you pretty much said donald trump is carrying out a full-on assault of the integrity of the november election. first of all, do you think he can? do you think it's possible? i know there are many who are rushing back to washington, trying to get money to the postal service, but i'm still worried that he actually could. and if so, how? >> listen, i don't think we can put anything past him.
he's seen he can't win the straight-up way by having the better ideas and motivating people to vote for him, so he is absolutely launching an assault on the postal system. my center issister is a postal . and the horrors of what's happening, taking the machine that processes mail out of their facility, creating fear among the workers there. that's just the postal service. but what he's also doing is creating a level of chaos that makes people fearful. let's start with where it really begins this year, and that's the incredible failed leadership on covid-19. why are we meeting virtually as a convention? why are schools not open? why are our sports teams not able to play? why are we not able to resume a life we all know and have come to cherish? it's because donald trump refused to recognize the incredible pandemic that came to our shores. he's failed miserably and
literally people have paid for it with their life. yes, we must turn the page in november and move to a president and vice president who can take us out of this historically dark time. >> mayor lightfoot, it's willie geist. thank you for being on the show this morning. i want to give you a chance to respond to president trump who invoked your name a couple of times in a couple of different appearances on the campaign trail. what do you say to him when americans look at pictures of chicago, stores being looted still all these months later? what are you doing in your city to restore order and to stop some of the chaos we've all seen on tv? >> luckily, it's minimal. yes, we do absolutely have our challenges. we have people who are afraid and scared because of covid-19. we now have literally tens of thousands of people unemployed because of the economic downturn occasioned by the shutdowns that
were necessary because of the president's failed leadership on covid-19. and we're dealing with the reckoning across chicago, as in many cities across the country, related to systemic racism. we are on the front lines, an incredible moment in our civic history. not just in chicago but across the country. the remark about the brejs, one of the bridges we put up is near trump tower because our protesters and vigilantes would love nothing more than to attack trump tower. those little notes i get from eric trump every time we protected that property, if they want us to stop, say the word. >> mayor lightfoot, what about the gun vie henolence in your c. it continues. yesterday a 13 and 14-year-old were shot, they're in critical condition. a 9-year-old suffered a graze twound to his head.
we've heard for years and years about guns coming from indiana. we know the gang problem is bad there. why haven't leaders like yourself done more to stop it? why does it continue in chicago? >> well, look, we can't stop things that happen outside of our borders. 60% of the illegal guns that come into chicago every year are from out of state, from indiana, from mississippi, from other states that have lax gun laws. when my people can go over the border to indiana and buy military-grade weapons and bring them back in any quantity they want as long as their money is right, that's a problem. that's a problem we need federal leadership on. every mayor i know has worked hard, and i'm no different, to bring priests to our neighborhood. as long as we have this proliferation of illegal guns pouring in from outside of our borders, we are going to continue to fight an uphill walgts. there are things the federal
government is uniquely qualified to do, to partner with us to stop the scourge of gun violence. this president refuses to engage on those basic issues. it's still a problem when somebody who can't fly in a plane can get a gun. it's still a problem when we don't have universal background checks, where we haven't shut the gun show loophole. those aren't things a mayor or a local governor or even state government can contend with. we need the federal government to step up. we're doing our part and actually, willie, we've made very good progress over the last month in bringing down the number of shootings and homicides. it's not good enough and i'm never going to rest until we're in the safest big city. a lot of us also depends on making sure we have partnerships at the federal level to pass common sense gun control laws we all know will make a difference and save lives and save
children's lives. >> mayor lightfoot, you say your sister is a postal worker and you're hearing of pretty big problems so far. what's your message to republican senators, for example? these are the people who could make a difference as it pertains to this issue. >> the postal service should never be a partisan issue. it's way beyond voting, although the voting is important, which is the impetus for this assault on the postal service. people depend upon the postal service to get their medicine, to transact business, to make sure they're paying their bills on time. this is a huge and significant assault on one of the important pillars of our democracy, and every -- and particularly the republicans have to step up and say, enough. we've got to restore -- >> mayor lightfoot, do you have a message for the looters and others who are using protests to
commit acts, wonton acts of violence across chicago and also undermine the legacy of my good friend, and i'm sure yours and both of our heroes,on lewis, who constantly talked -- like martin luther king and other great civil rights leaders, constantly talked about the need of not being hijacked by violent actors. do you have a message to those looters inside of your city? >> i do. we've been saying it very clearly. obviously we need to make space for peaceful protests. that's a critical part of our american identity. first amendment right, speech and assembly. we draw a very sharp line against that and what we've seen. vigilantes in each crowd coming for a fight, with frozen water bottles and other projectiles aimed at doing only one thing, which is attacking our police
officers. we draw a sharp line against the organized crews that have looted parts of our city. we absolutely will not tolerate this. if you're involved in criminal activity, we will treat you like a criminal. we will find you and bring you out of the shadows and bring you to justice. we've arrested a lot of folks who crossed that line. we're coming after the looters and making sure they are held accountable in a court of law. there's no space in our city for criminal activity. we're not going to tolerate it and i instructed our police officers to do everything we can to make sure we stop it in its tracks. if anybody dare test our resolve, we'll give them the full power of our criminal justice system. we can't allow someone to erode the moral fabric of our city. >> chicago mayor lori lightfoot. thank you very, very much for being on the show this morning. up next on "morning joe" --
>> over the past four years, a lot of people have asked me, when others are going so low, does going high really still work? my answer, going high is the only thing that works because when we go low, when we use those same tactics of degrading and dehumanizing others, we just become part of the ugly noise that's drowning out everything else. we degrade ourselves. we degrade the very causes for which we fight. >> michelle obama last night reaffirming her, when they go low, we go high mantra. the lincoln project says, we go low so you don't have to. >> they're like scrubbing the bubbles. you've got to love these guys. >> co-founder rick wilson joins us next. i'm looking for my client. i'm his accountant. i'm so sorry. hey!
no uh uh, no way come on, no no n-n-n-no-no only discover has no annual fee on any card. under this administration, authoritarianism has taken root in our country. i and my family and many of yours know the insidious way authoritarianism destroys democracy, decency and humanity. >> joining us now, republican political strategist and co-founder of the lincoln project, rick wilson. his book "running against the devil:a plot to save america from trump and democrats from
themselves" is out today in paperback. also with us, msnbc national affairs analyst, co-host of s w showtime's "the circus," john heilemann. >> you know, twitter, try to stay away from it as much as possible. rick wilson, last night, i laughed out loud -- >> that was a good one. >> we go low, so you don't have to. the scrubbing bubbles of 2020. we work so you don't have to. but, you know, it reminded me how republicans campaigning and democrats campaign do think differently. they just do. you and i may have left the party, but the campaigning dna is still in there. i saw these people whining last night about this myles taylor guy endorsing biden. oh, we don't want him. no, no, no, no, no. i was reminded of what w.d. childers said, i didn't agree with a lot of things he said,
but one is this, i want all the money and i want all the votes, and that's the idea. when you're the campaign, you want all the money and all the votes and you want as big a tent as >> and you don't want to end up like w.d.'s friends under a house. but long story short, this is always the case -- this is always the case with addition. the base of either party is insufficient to win the electoral college so you have to add people, bring folks in. they were trying really hard at the convention to show that even -- even though they are no longer in office, republicans who are breaking away from trump, it doesn't have to be a lot. we call it the bannon line. steve bannon said 3% or 4% of republicans walk away from trump, the game is over. he's not wrong. we're in a situation where you saw that last night highlighted a little bit. and that's a lot of what we're doing at the lincoln project as
well. >> yeah, john heilemann, donald trump's campaign called john kasich a useful idiot or whatever. far left wing radicals. so again, it's so bizarre. this is a guy, and i was there when he was doing it, who fought like hell against the republican and democratic establishment, to balance the budget for the first time in a generation and his budget chairman, he did it four years in a row. you know what other conservative has done that in the past century? oh, wait, nobody. and kasich had to be conservative and stare down not only liberal democrats but powerful appropriators in his own party. the guy is a conservative. only in this bizarre political world would anybody ever
consider kasich anything but a conservative. but it's a personality call. >> well, yeah. think about this, joe. in that same press release they sent out last night attacking john kasich, they attacked susan molinari for being -- wait for nice they attacked susan molinari for being a vladimir putin puppet. a pal of vladimir putin. so talk about pots and kettles and the color black. i was just stunned by that. so, you know, what are you going to say? it's the most ridiculous thing on earth. i don't think president trump would know a republican if one came up and bit him on the hind quarters. we are where we are. >> so, rick, we're going to let john heilemann close his blinds to the right there. >> seriously. >> rick, let's talk about this campaign because you have said that, of course, donald trump -- there he goes. yeah, turn it there, john. >> you said, of course donald
trump could win. of course he can win, but joe biden could lose it. and you explain that by saying, if he runs the campaign that donald trump and the trump campaign wants him to run. what do you mean by that? >> donald trump knows this campaign right now is a referendum on him. it is a referendum on a man who has mismanaged a pandemic so badly that 170,000 of our fellow americans have died. he's wrecked the economy by being an idiot on the front end of the pandemic and saying, nothing is happening. it's not wrong. nothing is happening. this is a yes or no decision. decent man or indecent man. competent or incompetent man. and they'll know donald trump is the incompetent, indecent, corrupt person in this race. if this is a race about socialism or policy, donald trump has a shot to recapture some of those republicans who are walking away from the party right now because they fear things like socialism and they fear things, you know, that a
radical flip side version of donald trump. i don't think it's easy for them to get there right now because trump has fallen so far and so fast, but this is a matter of sticking with this being a referendum about donald trump's leadership and the failures that he has caused and the pain he has caused this country. >> john heilemann, democrats did that last night. that was the first night to remind people about donald trump's record, even just over the last few months. you had bernie sanders out front bringing progressives back into the fold and saying we have to. it's critical. it's existential that we get behind joe biden and kamala harris. we have disagreements with them on issues but we have to get together with them. and closing the night with michelle obama. from democrats you've talked to, how do they think last night went as a kickoff to this week? >> i think people are, willie, very focused on the two things you mentioned at the end which on the broadcast networks which still have, you know, a much
bigger reach than this network and other cable networks, they only took an hour of the convention last night. they took that 10:00 to 11:00 hour. the first hour which some people thought was not maybe as wholly compelling. it was an attempt to do something no one has ever done before. the first attempt to do it that first hour. they're still figuring out how to make this seamless. the second hour was more like a traditional convention. you had the two big speeches. those are the ones the broadcast networks took and those were effective pieces of communication for the work that needs to get done here. for a lot of democrats i talk to and what people inside the campaign are focused on, having gotten that work done last night, it's expected sanders and michelle obama to be very good. they're now focused on really the most important work of this convention. as we've started to see some polls that have suggested a little bit of tightening over the last few days and
particularly, the fact that donald trump continues to maintain this advantage on the economy that they have important work to do these next three nights on telling people the stories of joe biden. everyone in america knows he was barack obama's vice president but there's a lot of data out there that suggests there's still a lot of his background that needs to be filled in. the story of who joe biden is and trying to lay out that economic vision and trying to make up a little bit of that ground to get closer if not overtake donald trump. get into a more competitive position with him on the economy. it's according to the nbc/"wall street journal" poll, the most important issue to voters. who is best suited to rebuild the economy. trump has a ten-point lead in that area. that's the thing the biden campaign is superfocused on. you'll hear discussion about joe biden's biography and economics over the next three nights. >> you know, rick wilson, we can't say it's early anymore when we look at polils.
we're starting to get into the early stretch. early voting will start in the next few weeks in quite a few states. i think north carolina is one of the first. we have a poll out of wisconsin this morning that we've shown that shows joe biden up by six points. that's fairly consistent. you go to the cross tabs, fairly consistent you have suburban voters moving away from donald trump, seniors moving away from donald trump, educated voters moving away from donald trump. i'm just curious, though. six points. is that still a little too close for comfort? not only in this poll but also in polls that you see in michigan, arizona, north carolina and other swing states? where are we? where is this state of the race as far as you're concerned by all the numbers you're looking at? >> joe, on the electoral college likely voter polls, biden has a meaningful but not sufficient advantage. and i think it's important in the coming weeks that people focus in those states, they focus resources, communications
efforts, strategic efforts in those states to rev up the early voting because this is going to start as early voting starts in a very short window from now in most states, donald trump is going to try to roll out an august, september and october surprise to drive down democratic turnout. we're going to have to be ready for those things. the earlier people vote and request their absentee ballot and get back in, the better we are. especially if he's playing shenanigans with the postal service and other things. it's important to keep that up in these states and to not take anything for granted. you cannot rest with donald trump. he is a feral animal trapped in a cage right now. he'll do anything. lie, cheat, steal, suppress the vote. he'll do all kinds of things to keep revving up his base, depressing democratic turnout and feed the monster that keeps the fundraising going for him. you can expect a lot of white-hot crazy coming at you really soon now from donald
trump. >> john heilemann, what are we looking at tonight? what are we expecting at the dnc tonight? >> well, i think, you know, the highlight for tonight i think is going to be the woman that you're going to have on the next morning which is to say thursday morning -- wednesday morning, i guess. which is dr. jill biden who, to my point a second ago. think about the two big pieces of business this convention has to do. telling joe biden's story, making him the acceptable alternative. they've made the case against donald trump for months now. still making it, but can joe biden be the acceptable alternative? a lot of that is biographical work and no one knows him better than dr. jill biden. she's going to get a bunch of time to tell the story of their relationship and tell the story, the human story of joe biden. a lot of the stuff that's hand to him that makes him the character of empathy that is such a stark and appealing contrafts to donald trump.
we'll hear the first part of that story told tonight by her and that's, i say, a politically very, very important piece of business they need to get done. >> really looking forward to it. john heilemann, we'll see you tomorrow at 6:00 p.m. and rick wilson, thank you. his book "running against the devil: a plot to save america from trump and democrats from themselves." it's out today in paperback. sdhat that does it for us t morning. stephanie ruhle picks up the coverage right now. >> thanks, mika. thanks, joe. i'm stephanie ruhle. it is tuesday, august 18s. and we are exactly 11 weeks from election day. that's right. 11 weeks from today. and we're in the midst of the first all-virtual political convention in american history. it picks up just a few hours from now. the big liners tonight will be dr. jill biden and former president bill clinton. night one of the dnc was a technical success but visually, it was a