tv CNN Newsroom With Alisyn Camerota and Victor Blackwell CNN June 17, 2021 12:00pm-1:00pm PDT
process. here's a small portion of it. these videos are just part of the evidence in various capitol riot court cases. so that's the reality, what you are seeing with your own eyes. now for the unreality several republican lawmakers and right-wing fox hosts are desperate trying to bury what happened on that day, and you heard them already claim the attack was mostly peaceful, and the rioters were not armed or they were not really pro trump supporters and a mob. in fact, republican congressman andrew klei thinks what we saw here resembles a normal tourist
visit. >> and now, this is the d.c. metro officer beaten with a flagpole while defending the capitol that day. >> i am not here to make this a political issue, it just so happens that one party is lying about what thousands of officers experienced that day on capitol hill. i'm going to confront anybody that lies about that day, because while these members are betraying their oath, thousands of d.c. police officers and u.s. capitol police officers were fulfilling their oath and continue to do so every day. >> andrew mccabe is a former deputy director of the fbi. first, listen, when we hear from michael fanone there, he said he explained who he was to the
congressman, he walked away. the idea of backing the blue, and when somebody was beaten with a flagpole to defend you, how can they maintain that mantra? >> they can't. these people are not backing the blue or the american people or truth. the congressman was literally confronted with the truth in the form of that officer and he ran away, because that truth is inconvenient for him. that truth proves that the things that he's been saying about an ordinarily march of tourists through the capitol is a lie. he has been lying to his own constituents and lying to anybody who listens. i am not surprised that somebody like that would run away from the officer, and it's despicable but seems to be where we are. >> we are learning new details tied to the inspector generals investigation, and it includes rioters stole dozens of vests
and helmets from capitol police, and carried high-caliber firearms and stored them in parked cars nearby, and only 22 of 29 members of one unit had completed the certain weapons certifications, meaning of the capitol police officers. these threads are slowly coming out, and it's just shocking every new discloser. >> it really is. i think each one, alisyn, reminds us how close we came to an absolute unmitigated disaster that day. that could have meant many more lives lost, and a real foundational disruption in the functioning of our democracy, but for the efforts of the capitol police and metropolitan police department officers on the scene, you know, who were being so badly beaten and their own equipment was being stolen
from them in the midst of the riot, but for the fact they were able to turn back that mob by the end of the day, and the senate was able to come in and do their job and certify the election, who knows how much worst this day would have been. >> the congressman said that there were rioters there, and there were vandals, and does not acknowledge it was an insurrection, and was one of 21 congressmen voting against honoring the officers with a congressional gold medal. congresswoman liz cheney had something to say about this. listen. >> yeah, the police fought for us that day and defended us, and i am sure they saved lives and defended the capitol, and the idea that they would not get a congressional gold medal is outrageous. >> should kevin mccarthy do something about these members? >> it's outrageous they voted no. >> what is your reaction? >> it's outrageous.
she's right. as i was saying earlier, the truth of what happened that day is inconvenient for republicans, and it's an embarrassment and contradicts the political narrative that they believe is most favorable to them. so they will continue to lie and continue coming up with ridiculous characterizations of what happened that day and dishonoring the men and women that fought for their lives on the hill that day. it's just absolutely -- it's despicable. nevertheless, it's so important for us to get these videos out in a way that the network has done today to constantly put these images in front of people, to not let this truth get swept under the rug by paul stkpeubgz force them to confront what happened. >> there's another despicable thing, and on the "tucker carlson show," it has no
journalistic under pinning, it's just, you know, concocted out of a whole cloth, but that doesn't stop them from pedaling it, and it's so anti-law enforcement. i just don't know what to do anymore. i have to assume there are some fbi agents that do watch fox or do watch tucker carlson's show. what do they think when they hear people like tucker blame this on fbi agents? >> here we go again, alisyn. when all else fails let's come up with some demonic conspiracy theory and blame it on the fbi. i don't know what they are thinking when they see this stuff, i hope what they are realizing is they are not backing the blue, and these are not patriots and they are lying
for their own personal benefit or getting ratings for fox news or whatever that might be. they should dispense with these people and the things they are saying. it's absolutely horrendous to continue to tear down an institution like the fbi, to kind of plant these seeds of conspiracy in the minds of many people who are willing to believe anything these days, it's incredibly damaging to the institutions in this country that we all rely on to protect all of us, not just one party or the other, but everyone. it's really dis despairing to s. >> the lawyers said that nobody would ever believe anything he claims on his show, and they have said that about other fox hosts, too, and somehow the viewers never hear that. >> thank you. let's turn to two major rulings handed down today, one
involves the health care act. >> and one weighs into religious freedoms, and specifically whether a catholic foster care agency can refuse to work with same-sex couples. >> tell us what the justices said, and how they justified their decision in the obamacare case? >> it will remain in place, and that means millions and millions and millions of people will be able to keep their health care insurance amidst the pandemic. here's what the court did. justice breyer writing for a 7-2 majority, he said the republican states and the individuals that brought the challenge did not have the legal right to be in court because they could not show a concrete harm. you have to step back a little
bit to understand where he's coming from there, because it was chief justice john roberts, he upheld the law in 2012 under the taxing power and congress got rid of the tax and these critics came back to court and saying you have gotten rid of the mandate that is unconstitutional, and he dismissed the challenge and said you can't show a concrete harm here. then you had two of the conservative justices, gorsuch and alito, they dissented. they said once again the court has pulled off an improbable rescue of the law, and this is a win for the supporters of the affordable care act today. >> one analyst said this third decision based on standing makes it hard for a fourth challenge on the constitutional argument. do you agree with that?
>> i think three strikes and the challenges are out here and we're done. it's very interesting, because they did it on the basis of a conservative doctrine saying do you have a right to be in court. congress just, as she said, after they held the last time and roberts said this is a tax, they said, fine, we'll make it zero now, no tax, and then what breyer said for the court was well it's zero so there's nothing we can do to help you, if you don't do the mandate there's no action a court can take and if there's no action a court could take, you are not allowed to be here, and so they're done. as a practical matter there's nothing really left to try and find, and this is a historic day, not as a legal matter but as a social matter. i think the affordable care act is now with us, you know, for good, just the big sort of new deal legislation or voting
rights legislation are part of the american fabric. >> that's what president obama said, it's now here to stay. he tweeted that out. as a court watcher, is it interested to look at the breakdown, you know, the conservatives, the clarence thomas, and brett kavanaugh and amy conet barrett that sided the liberals on the court, including justice roberts there? >> they did it on a dry legal term, and it's called standing, right. conservatives -- it's hard to get in court and hard to bring a challenge and that's where the conservatives here who ruled with the majority, they said, look, we're not even going to get to the merits of the law, we are going to dismiss this because you didn't have the injury that you need to bring the challenge. that's what makes it make more sense. >> let's turn to the fulton decision, the religious freedom case. you say this is the most important decision of the term.
why? >> it's the dog that didn't bark that makes it most important. everybody was watching this to see would the new court emboldened make new law about religious freedom, and here was the issue. you saw that basically philadelphia said to a catholic organization, we're not going to let you do foster care anymore because you won't do same-sex parents, and they said you are discriminating against religion. there's a case that says if you are regulating across the board and happen to get a religious freedom that's okay, and what the court said is that doesn't apply here, and in effect you have discriminated against religion because the law let's you have discretion to say yes, no, maybe to different people, and that means when you told the catholic agency they couldn't do
it, that singled them out, and under the current law you discriminated against them and justice roberts, who it's a big day for him in a way, and people have been saying his power as chief is ebbing, but he put together liberals and others and progressives and others for this ruling that on the one hand is a win for the catholic organization, and on the other hand saves an important doctrine that progressives were worried was going to fall. >> thank you. >> thank you to you both. >> thank you. success overseas, some say, but president biden has come home to conflict with his own party on some issues, and the bipartisan plan on infrastructure has support from both parties. and joe manchin comes up with a plan that even gets approval from stacey abrams. he says let's offer mandatory 15
days of early voting, and automatic voter registration through the dmv. >> i talked to everybody, and i have been working across the aisle with all the republicans trying to get understand that that's the bedrock of our democracy, an accessible, fair and basically secure voting, and that's it, and in a divided country it's not about me but our country. >> but minority leader, mitch mcconnell, is now throwing cold water on those ideas. >> equally unacceptable, totally inappropriate, all republicans, i think, will oppose that as well if that were to be surfaced on the floor. >> cnn's senior political correspondent, abby phillips joins us with more. good to have you here. >> hi. >> interesting what joe manchin is doing, where he's sort of laying out different things and
being more transparent. where does this leave him? >> seems like he's calling the bluff of progressives saying you are against everything, and you are calling for bipartisanship, what are you for? he says here's what i am for. here's a list of compromises i am willing to accept, and now you ar you are hearing progressives saying no way, no how. yes, we had stacey abrams endorsing a compromised effort -- >> for the voting rights. >> let's listen. >> he's -- >> let's listen to stacey abrams. >> absolutely. what senator manchin is putting forward is basic building blocks we need to ensure, and democracy is accessible no matter your geography. >> does this make progress? >> i think it's very significant that stacey abrams is coming out and saying this and you are
hearing other democrats saying let's play ball with making some changes to the john lewis voting rights act and senate 1 bill that is much broader and deals with anti-corruption issues. i do think progressives are, you know, under the microscope here, and many are not okay with watering down on infrastructure and vettingoting rights. in the house, democrats have five votes to play with unless they get republicans onboard and it makes it a very tricky discussion. you are also hearing from democrats, yeah, joe manchin is for all these things, and you heard mitch mcconnell he's not particularly interested in allowing any of his members to go forward and vote for any voting rights bill, and it calls into question whether it is true that what manchin is for is also what will get you to 60 votes. many democrats are saying that's not the case.
>> right. i hear that and i think isn't it just manchin getting to manchin's comfort? in other words, is part of this exercise so that he gets comfortable with democrats going alone and giving up on biparti bipartisanship? >> that's a question, and it's not just about manchin. voting rights is not something you can use a reconciliation budget maneuver to get through, and on voting rights there are several democrats not in favor of getting rid of the filibuster. joe manchin may not be comfo -- that's why i think you are hearing a lot of progressives in particular saying the issue here is whether joe manchin is willing to put the filibuster on the line if it means getting something as important as voting rights done, because they don't
see a path to 60 votes without getting rid of the filibuster, even if one, two, three or four or even eight republicans get onboard, and that's still not 60 votes. >> let's talk about policing and reforms there. the deadline that the white house set was may 25th, the day of george floyd died. we are coming up to that now, and we know that tim scott is optimistic, but it looks like they're still in the same place they were a month ago? >> too early to say. i think tim scott has been more conservative in terms of talking about whether he really feels like there's progress. he said this week the closer you get to the finish line the more difficult this becomes, and i think that's generally true, that even though they are down to now -- it sounds like one or two issues, those are the hardest issues. this is about whether police
officers can be held permanently liable, how and under what circumstances? those are tough issues for democrats and those are red lines in some cases for republicans. this might be the hardest hill to climb. yes, they might be at the, you know, the one yard line, but it's on the hardest stuff. you know, i think lindsay graham is looking at it saying we're so close, but tim scott realizes that this is going to be very difficult. too early to tell. both sides are still talking, though. that's a positive development. and i think on this issue, just like we were talking about voting rights and on infrastructure, let's watch the progressives. you got a lot of progressives in the house saying we are not for these compromises, people like cory bush, saying we are not in favor of watering down the police srbill on criminal liability in particular, and let's watch that and it's a major unanswered question
whether the democratic votes will be there for this kind of compromise. >> abby phillip, thank you very much for watching us. great to see you. >> you, too. in just a few minutes president biden will sign a bill marking juneteenth a federal holiday. it commemorates the end of slave slavery in the united states. and then working on a possible prisoner exchange sitting in a russian prison right now. reed's parents will join us, next. riders, the lone wolves of the great highway. all they need is a bike and a full tank of gas. their only friend? the open road. i have friends. [ chuckles ] well, he may have friends, but he rides alone. that's jeremy, right there! we're literally riding together. he gets touchy when you talk about his lack of friends. can you help me out here?
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so among the many issues president biden covered yesterday with president vladimir putin, the fate of two former u.s. marines held in russian prisons. >> i raised the case of two wrongfully imprisoned american citizens, paul whalen and trevor reed. >> the family of the detained americans, came up and we discussed it. we will follow-through with that discuss. i am not going to walk away on this. >> so there's a proposal to swap paul whalen and trevor reed with
two russians held in the u.s., and no resolution there yet. the family disputes all charges and makes their pleas even more urgent. reed recently contracted covid-19 while in custody. with me now, joey and paula reed. thank you for being with me. before we get to the political element and before we get to the president's conversation with vladimir putin, how is your son? what is the latest on his diagnosis and treatment? >> well, we got a quick phone call from him and he has been returned back to his jail. he said he is still having chest pain and he has requested a new covid test and x-ray, and it's -- he also said that while he was in the hospital jail that he did not receive any treatment, all he got was, like, vitamins. >> so you had a phone call with him. when was the call?
>> monday morning -- >> i think it was tuesday. was it monday? >> the day before yesterday. >> paula, the last time we spoke at the end of our conversation you were breaking down just having not heard from him. what was it like to hear from your son, to hear his voice? >> obviously it was very exciting for us, and i could tell the phone rang and you could tell from the number on it it was trevor from overseas, and his sister was here and got to talk to him, joey, and his best friend from elementary school was here with us and he got to speak with him, and it was really great. >> good. glad to hear you had that call. we played the totality of what president biden said about his conversation with vladimir putin about your son. >> we're very happy about what he said and with what president biden -- i mean, president putin said. president putin said previously
he was very open to discussions, and then he said yesterday that it was discussed and that the state department and the foreign ministry would be working towards that end, or in that direction. both of those -- that's exactly what we were hoping for and did not expect an immediate release, and the fact they both said publicly they would discuss it, we're very happy. >> for those that did not hear the remarks from putin, let's play those and we will continue talking. >> translator: the american side managed to talk about the exchange of prisoners of russians in u.s. prisons, and president biden did actually raise that question about american prisoners in the russian federation. we did discuss that. we might be able to find some kind of compromise there.
the ministry of foreign affairs and the secretary will work on it. >> the swap would include russians, an arms dealer, and a russian drug smuggler. have you heard anything from the state department, from the administration about the plausibility of that trade happening? >> victor, first of all, we have never been told that by any parties in any government. no particular prisoner for prisoner trade has ever been mentioned. it's always been a discussion of a possible prisoner exchange. we know that in the media there has been a lot of speculation on who would be traded for who, but that's not anything we have been told. >> we've never been told that, so. >> you heard it in the media. the first from an official, was
that yesterday after the meeting? >> i'm sorry, we heard what from the -- >> you said the first time you heard anything from an official was after the news conferences? >> no, i have been hearing about the people you mentioned in the russia media for the entire time trevor has been in prison, and they have been talking about that since paul whelan has been taken prisoner. >> do you support that swap to get your son home? >> well, first of all, we just want our son home, so we support a swap that is agreeable to both nations. >> were there any conversations with you by anybody in the administration after the meeting with putin yesterday? >> yes, we just had our weekly
call with the special presidential envoy on hostage affairs and they had not gotten a full briefing from the team that was in geneva yet, so we did not have any updated information yet. >> joey and paula reed, thank you again for speaking with us. of course we all hope that your son comes home very soon. thank you so much. >> thank you. >> thank you for continuing to show this story. >> certainly. certainly will. >> yes, we absolutely will. we will stay on top of it. it will good to get a health update from them. >> yes miles per hour. juneteenth, a day to mark the end of slave rein the united states will officially become a federal holiday. martin luther king jr.'s daughter, bernice king will join us live with her thoughts, next.
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adults said a lot. let me start with your reaction to what we are about to watch, juneteenth becoming a federal holiday? >> i certainly think this is an important moment of reckoning, an important moment where this nation now will have an opportunity to learn even more about this important history that african-americans have faced. it's a moment that creates a more sense of inclusion, you know. a lot of black americans don't feel included on our independence day as a nation because so many of our ancestors were not free. we can't forget it's a ceremony, and holidays are points of recognition and what is needed is substance.
i find it kind of ironic that we would pass legislation for something that is ceremonial but things that are substant, the seems as congress is a bit schizophrenic. my hope is they will move and pass the voting rights legislation and the john lewis voter advancement act, and they would pass the george floyd police -- justice and policing act. there's just so much that has to happen in our senate to really deliver substance to the black community. i remember two years ago in celebrating the king holiday, i reminded the audience, that it has to be life long, because we
still face injustice and equity in our world, and we have to have a life commitment to make a reality genuinely equal for all americans, and in this case for black americans. >> bernice, i want to ask you about that poll that victor just read. this year has been a humbling experience for many white folks, myself included and how woefully uninformed we are about major historical moments, between juneteenth and the tulsa wall street massacre, and little has been known, and how do we change that? >> those of us who were involved in the work of raising awareness and educating have to be consistent in doing that, and i think the holiday helps to raise
the awareness because it's a moment where there will be a concentration of energy in that regard. we can't neglect the fact that while people are catching up on the educational side, we still have to do the legislative work of ending police brutality and ending housing discrimination, and stopping health care disparities, and eradicating education, and all these things we are still not liberated from in the black community. >> for juneteenth to become a holiday was unanimous in the senate, and not in the house. there were 14 gop members who voted against the bill, and i wonder when you look at this group, 14 white male republicans
that voted against juneteenth becoming a federal holiday, and you think back to the early '80s, and those that voted against your father's birthday from becoming a federal holiday, what is your message to these members, what they should know about this vote? >> well, i guess i will mix my father's world in this moment, because those in congress and in the senate have got to find a way to overcome the divide in themselves, you know. my father said one of the great tragedies of life is that people seldom bridge the gap between profession and practice, and between doing and saying instead of persistence schizophrenia, leaves so many of us tragically divided against ourselves, and that's what we are experiencing
right now, members in the senate. i don't know how they voted on the voting legislation, and they probably voted against it, but the fact of the matter is at some point in this nation, those that represent democracy, even passed by a constituent base, they have to contend with the conflict within. you cannot support democracy and then do things that vote against what stands for a democracy for all people. i'm hoping they will get to a place where they will have the courage and strength to be the leaders they were elected to be. >> bernice king, it's nice to talk to you on this important day. thank you very much for sharing your perspective on all of this. >> so good to have you. thank you. >> thank you. i appreciate it. >> we will bring you live to the white house as soon as that signing happens. as america hopes from the
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and looking out across this room, i see the advocates, the activists, the leaders who have been calling for this day for so long, including the one and only, ms. opal lee. >> she just received a very special recognition from the president of the united states. and i see members of congress, members of congressional black
caucus, members of the united states senate who passed this bill unanimously. and all of whom collectively were responsible for delivering this bill to the president's desk, and i thank you all. we thank you all, the nation thanks you all. when we establish a national holiday, it makes an important statement. national holidays are something important. these are days when we as a nation have decided to stop and take stock, and often to acknowledge our history. so as we establish juneteenth as our newest national holiday, let us be clear about what happened on june 19th, 1865, the day we
call juneteenth. because, you see, that day was not the end of slavery in america. yes, on that day the enslaved people of galveston, texas, learned that they were free, but in fact 2 1/2 years earlier the emancipation praubgmation ended slavery in the confederation. think about that. for more than two years the enslaved people of texas were kept in servitude. for more than two years they were intentionally kept from their freedom, for more than two years. and then on that summer day, 156 years ago, the enslaved people of texas learned the news. they learned that they were free, and they claimed their
freedom. it was, indeed, an important day. [ applause ] >> still, let us also remember that day was not the end of slavery in america. the truth is, it would be six more months before the 13th amendment was ratified, before enslaved people in the south and north were free, so as we commemorate the history of juneteenth, as we did just weeks ago with the history of the tulsa race massacre, we must learn from our history and we must teach our children our history, because it is part of our history as a nation. it is part of american history. so let me say we're gathered
here in a house built by enslaved people. we are footsteps away from where president abraham lincoln signed the emancipation proclamation, and we are here to witness president joe biden establish juneteenth as a national holiday. we have come far, and we have far to go. today is a day of celebration, and it's a also a day of pride and it's also a day for kamalakamala. and with that say i say happy juneteenth, everybody. and with that i introduce the president of the united states, joe biden. [ applause ]
>> thank you. thank you. thank you, madam vice president. 156 years ago. 156 years. june 19th, 1865. major general of the union army arrived in galveston, texas, to enforce the emancipation proclamation and free the last enslaved americans in texas from bondage. the day, as you all know, came known as juneteenth. you all know that. a day that reflects what the psalm tells us. we may endure for a night but joy cometh in the morning. juneteenth marks both a long, hard night of slavery and a
promise of a brighter morning to come. this is a day of profound wait and profound power. a day which you'll remember the moral stain, the terrible toll that slavery took on the country and continues to take. what i've long called america's original sin. at the same time i also remember the extraordinary capacity to heal and to hope and to emerge from those painful moments in a bitter, bitter version of ourselves -- to make a better version of ourselves. and today we consecrate juneteenth for what it ought to be and what it must be. a national holiday. as the vice president noted, a holiday that will join the
others of our national celebrations. our independence. our laborers who built this nation. our servicemen and women who served and died in its defense. and the first new national holiday since the creation of martin luther king holiday nearly four decades ago. i'm grateful to the members of congress here today in particular the congressional black caucus who did so much to make this day possible and especially pleased that we showed the nation we can come together and democrats and republicans to commemorate this day with an overwhelming bipartisan support of the congress. i hope this is the beginning of a change in the way we deal with one another. we're blessed to mark the day in the presence of ms. opal lee. as my mother would say, god love her.
[ applause ] >> i had the honor of meeting her in nevada more than a year ago. she told me she loved me, and i believed it. i wanted to believe it. opal, you're incredible. a daughter of texas. grandmother of the movement to make juneteenth a federal holiday. ms. opal, you won't believe it, she's 49 years old. or 94 years old. you are an incredible woman. you really are. as a child growing up in texas, she and her family would celebrate juneteenth. juneteenth, 1939 when she was 12 years old, a white mob torched her family home. but such hate never stopped her anymore than it stopped the vast
majority of you that i'm looking at from this podium. over the course of decades, she's made it her mission to see that this day came. it was almost a singular mission. she's walked for miles and miles literally and figuratively to bring attention to juneteenth. to make this day possible. i ask once again that we all stand and give her a warm welcome to the white house. [ applause ] as they still say in the senate and i said for 36 years, i was walking down i regret that my
grandchildren aren't here because this is a really, really, really important moment in our history. by making juneteenth a federal holiday, all americans can feel the power of this day and learn from our history and celebrate progress and grapple with the distance we've come but the distance we have to travel. i said a few weeks ago marking 100th anniversary of the tulsa race massacre, great nations don't ignore their most painful moments. great nations don't ignore their most painful moments. they don't ignore those moments in the past. they embrace them. great nations don't walk away. we come to terms with the mistakes we made. and remembering those moments, we begin to heal and grow
stronger. the truth is it's not enough just to commemorate juneteenth. after all, emancipation of enslaved black americans didn't mark the end of america's work to deliver on the promise of equality. it only marked the beginning. to honor the true meaning of juneteenth, we have to continue toward that promise because we've not got therten there yet. all of you in this room are committed to doing just that. that's why we launched an aggressive effort to combat racial discrimination in housing. address the cruel fact that a home owned today by a black family is appraised lower as a white family in the same area. one of the biggest drivers of
generational wealth is home ownership. that's why we make it possible for more black entrepreneurs to access capital because their ideas are good. they lack the capital to get their fair share of federal contracts so they can begin to build wealth. we work to give each and every child three and four years of age, not day care but school in a school. [ applause ] that's why -- that's why we're unlocking creative and invasion -- innovation of our historical black colleges and universities and providing them with laboratories to help graduates prepare and compete for good paying jobs of the industries of the future. folks, the promise of equality is not going to be fulfilled until we become real, it becomes
real in our schools and on our main streets and in our neighborhoods. our health care system and ensuring that equity is at the heart of our fight against the pandemic and the water that comes out of our faucets and the air that we breathe in our communities and our justice system so that we can fulfill the promise of america for all people, all of our people, and it's not going to be fulfilled so long as the sacred right to vote remains under attack. [ applause ] you see this assault from restrictive laws, threats of intimidation, voter p r r pu
more. so let's make this very juneteenth, tomorrow, the first that our nation will celebrate all together as one nation. a juneteenth of action on many fronts. one of those is vaccinations. tomorrow the vice president will be in atlanta on a bus tour helping to spread the word like all of you have been doing on life-saving vaccines and across the country this weekend including here in washington, people will be canvassing and hosting events in their communities going door to door encouraging vege ing e ing vacc. we built equity in but we have more to do to close the racial gap in vaccination rates. the more we can do that, the more we can save lives. today also marks the sixth anniversary of the tragic deaths at the churc