tv BBC World News America PBS February 12, 2021 2:30pm-3:01pm PST
jane: i'm jane o'ien in washington. this is "bbc america." donald trump's fence team has ended their case early, refuting the claim he incited an insurrection, calling it a monstrous lie. they say the violence was preplanned and prosecutors failed to direct -- connect the actions of the writers to mr. trump. >> no thinking person could believe the president's january 6 speech on the ellipse was in anyway and incitement to violence or insurrection stop -- insurrection. jane: after -- we report on president putin's critics in the far east.
welcome to world news america on pbs and around the globe. donald trump's lawyer have closed their defense arguments, concluding he was not responsible for inciting the right at the u.s. capitol on nuary 6. michael vanderveen, one of his attorneys, claimed mr. trump could not incite what was already going to happen. he argued the former president was simply exercising freedom of speech, but he said the election had been stolen. reporter: much of this impeachment trial has turned on one section of donald trump's speech before an angry crowd on january 6. >> you have to fight like hell and if you don't fight like hell, you are going to not have a country anymore. reporter: the trump defense team are not in the least bit defensive. this is political knockabout and produce their own campaign style video to highlight how democrats use the exact same language. >> fight that fight. >> i was fighting very hard.
>> i think we should be fighting. fighting for reporter: -- fighting for a policy is not the same as urging -- jane: clearly we are having problems with that video. barbara usher is on capitol hill. after three days of hearing the defense and prosecution, what does this trial now rest on? guest: i would say the democrats came into this wanting to make as powerful and visual a record they could've what happened and to tie president trump to it. they wanted to do it as much for the historical record as anything given the odds were against them in terms of the vote in the senate. i would also say some of the republicans were deeply troubled by mr. trump's behavior and by that video evidence showing how
close the writers got to them during the insurrection. but at the end, many are still not convinced to vote mr. trump is responsible for it and responsible for inciting the violence. when it comes to a conclusion, we will probably see the politics are paramount, that this is seen through a political prism from both parties. jane: what happens next? guest: four hours of questions which have started already. then they will resume tomorrow, in which case the closing arguments will be presented. some of the senators may have a chance to speak from the floor. before that, there will be a vote whether to call witnesses, but that is quite unlikely at this stage. we are expecting a vote probably by tomorrow afternoon. jane: thank you for joining me from capitol hill. a former senior white hou
staff member under george w. bush administration joins me. the senators have been asking questions. what in your mind remains unresolved about the trial? guest: what remains unresolved is the reason white have a trial to begin with. donald trump is no longer a president. he's an ordinary citizen. the only thing that can happen now is to be vindictive against donald trump to prevent him from running as a presidential candidate is 2024. certainly he has announced that is his intention and it's up to the republicans whether they want him as their nominee if he chooses to run and the american people to vote if he is the nominee. this is an exercise in futility. he's not going to be convicted. if anything, they will make a martyr out of donald trump when he is acquitted. jane: do you see any shift among
republicans in the broader party? we had a former ambaador to the u.n. saying donald trump should be exiled and she was a staunch loyalist. does that give you any indication as to how the party may be moving away from donald trump? guest: the era of donald trump is over. i don't believe he's going to run in 20 24. i don't believe he did run he would get the nomination of the party. i think the era of donald trump is over. i don't think democrats like that very much at all. i think they like having donald trump around to kick him around and paint all republicans with a broad trump brush. i think others will come to lead our party. nikki haley is one of those leaders. guest: you say the era of donald trump is over but he got a record 74 million people to vote for him in november.
doesn't the republik and party need donald trump reporter -- supporters? guest: donald trump supporters are republican supporters. jane: are they? they are often called the party of trump. guest: i think that's wrong. the republican party belongs to the republican candidates and in the broader sense, the national and local parties. donald trump was a candidate. he is no longer in my opinion going to be up for any election in the remainder of his lifetime. the party has to move on and get behind donald trump. that's the case in most cases where presidents have left and no longer seek public life. jane: do you think with the end of donald trump's little influence that we will see a toning down in the rhetoric not just from the republican side
but the democrat side. is it time for both sides to move on from this? guest: absolutely. the rhetoric on democrats and republicans needs to be toned down a lot and with donald trump, it was always a balancing act between rhetoric versus results. the rhetoric of donald trump worked for the individual who donald trump was, not a politician, a businessman who was thrust into the presidency, highest office in our land, the most powerful man in the world. he never came through the ranks of the party or served in lesser office. i think it's important we returned to that model. donald trump was not an ideologue, he was not a republican in the purest sense, he was a transactional president. jane: we will have to leave it there. thank you for joining me.
the future of the republican party, as we have been saying, is at a crossroads as some key figureheads distance themselves from president trump. in an interview today, nikki haley, the former ambassador to the united nations under the previous administration expressed anger over mr. trump's treatment of vice president mike pence and said he had no place in their a pumpkin party. let's go to a former advisor to mr. -- in the republican party. let's go to a former advisor to mr. pentz. thank you for joining me. your former boss is being talked about a lot over the past couple of days in his trial but as republicans in the senate rescue -- wrestle with their relationship with mr. trump, why haven't we heard from mr. pentz himself? guest: i think quite honestly he just wants to forget this chapter of what has happened. he was in the capital that day,
his own life and his family's life were all at risk that day. we saw the footage during the impeachment trial that shows him being rushed out of the capital so quickly and how terrible and how awful to know that trump knew the vic president's life was in danger and yet he doubled down into pleated out still attacking mike pence. that says everything anyo needs to know about who donald trump is when he would basically double down when his number two in his own administration's life is in danger. i think that's a hard question for republican senators right now because this is mike pence, who they worked with for a very long time, for many jane: years. you -- jane: you left the administration in august last year. what do you say to republican senators who will need donald trump's supporters for reelection but who are now making that decision whether or
not to convict or acquit president trump? guest: i think this is an opportunity to break away from trump and trumpism. if you want to take a stand against it, you convict him and disqualify him from ever running again. it's not just about donald trump. it's about donald trump's family , the legacy movement, the trumper's and the republican party who are still out there to spell -- out there espousing thisype of rhetoric that donald trump ebled. this is it. this is the final offramp for these republican senators to take a stand if they want to bring the republican party back to true conservative values. jane: do you think he should be allowed to run again in office or should he, as the democrat say in this trial, be banned? guest: i don' think donald trump is fit to be preside -- jane: but should he be banned?
guest: i thinke should be banned. he led an attack at the u.s. capitol on the congrsional leadership and his own vice president. if that doesn't disqualify him, i don't know what does. jane: thank you very much for joining me. in mexico, more than 100 70,000 people have died due to covid, the thd highest death toll in the world. but the country has lost more than 300,000 lives in its decade long war on drugs. in one city, the double pandemic is plain to see. warning -- this -- some viewers may find elements of the story stressing. reporter: this is the sound of a city overwhelmed with emergencies. danielle is a paramedic for the
red cross. he's been working into anna for the past two decades. [speaking spanish] [speaking spanish] reporter: he was just 49 years old. many people here are scared about covid, so paramedics like covid find more -- paramedics like daniel find more and more people at home, most of them unresponsive. >> [speaking spanish] reporter: meanwhile, on the
others of town, his wife is suiting up for anotherovid emergency. she has already had covid but she is scared she could catch it again. >> [speaking spanish] reporter: one of the hard truths about covid is relatives are not allowed into hospitals, so this could be a last chance to say goodbye. >> [speaking spanish] reporter: in this city, there are only a dozen ambulances for about 2 million people. so emergency calls keep coming. and when night falls, they are faced with another pandemic -- and violence. juggling between covid
emergencies and cases of violence has become the new normal for paramedics. this is because the red cross, emergency service she is working for is the only one of the city of tijuana fully prepared to attend this kind of high-risk emergencies. first responders don't have access to the shooting scene at often gets to be too late to make a difference. their battle to save lives has never been so physically or mentally draining. >> [speaking spanish] reporter: this is a city traumatize not only by gun violence but also by covid. for this husband and wife, things won't get easier anytime
soon. jane: let's have a quick look at some of the days other news -- the former head of the european central bank has agreed to form a new government in italy. mario draghi has presented his list of cabinet ministers and the new government's immediate challenges to accelerate the rollout of vaccinations and kickstart an economic recovery. he will be sworn in on saturday. in the united states, the centers for disease control and prevention has released new recommendations about how to safely reopen schools. they say returning to the classroom should not be dependent on whether teachers have been vaccinated, though they strongly encourage educators to receive the job. the cdc's findings are only recommendations. states and cities across the nation are likely to use the guidelines as a roadmap for how to resume in person education.
you are watching "bbc world news america." still to come -- open for business, indoor dining resumes at a limited capacity in new york city had of valentine's day celebrations. some of the most influential banks on wall street's are now planning to accept the cryptocurrency, bitcoin. are is this correspondent has more from new york. reporter: you have mastercard, bank of new york mellon, the oldest bank in the nation both basically taking a bet on bitcoin and adds to this title wave after elon musk said they would start investing in bitcoin and accepting payment in bitcoin in the future. this is a currency born in the aftermath of the financial crisis of 2008 and 2009.
then there was this terrible winter of 2018 and 2019 when the cryptocurrency looked in doubt. now you are starting to see what some people say is the legitimization and it has some of the big traditional banks looking at what point do we have to jump in? jane: kremlin dissident alexi novelli return to court today, this time accused of defaming a world war ii veteran. his arrest on arrival to russia last month sparked outrage and protests across the country. our moscow correspondent traveled more than 4000 miles to the country's far east to gauge the political temperature there. reporter: what do you find at the end of russia? where the pacific turns to ice?
at first, russia here feels frozen in time -- no hint of spring. but in vlavostok, there are signs something is changing. last month, thousands here wrist arrest to protest in support of jailed opposition leader alexei navalny. there were ralli across russia , but there is no political thaw . the kremlin calls the protest illegal and that is cracking down. one blogger live-streamed one of the protests. a few days ago, police raided his flat and pinned him to the floor. the police video shows his head over the dog bowl. >> this show of force was meant
to scare me on my wife. now the authorities are using that video to scare oers by showing what happens to people who tell truth. reporter: one scientist is working on new cancer treatments and took part in the vladivostok protests. he's been targeted by the police. >> they broke into my apartment, made me lay on the floor and it was real humiliating. reporter: this isn't just happening here in the russian far east. in recent days, there have been reports of police raids and searches across the country, a sign of just how determined the authorities are to crush the protest movement. in moscow, alexei navalny was back on the dock accused of defaming a world war ii veteran.
this month, he had already been sentenced to two and half years in prison in a fraud case widely seen as politically motivated. the police raids on protesters is an attempt to cut his support by spreading fear. >> it will send chilling waves across everyone else in their early 's, idealistic, once to work for team navalny. a lot of people will be scare a lot of parents will exert a lot of pressure on their kids to not join the movement. reporter: there's something else the kremlin is doing to try to undermine public support for protests. it is telling russians through the state media that mr. navalny is an agent of the west and some people are believing it. >> he is carrying out thwest's instruction. >> we all know it is the west pulling navalny's strings.
reporter: as for navalny being poisoned? he probably poisoned himself. where is this taking russia? with blame the west the official narrative, there's little chance of a thaw in relations with america and europe. russia is facing the prospect of growing isolation. jane: today is a big day for thousands of pandemic stricken restaurants in new york because a ban on indoor dining is being partially lifted. but the partial return to eating inside is not being welcomed by everyone. reporter: at friedmans, a popular restaurant down the upper east side, the pandemic has definitely tempered business, but it is still afloat. more than a thousand other dini establishments in the city have closed, all a victim of covid-19. >> we start indoor dining on
friday at 25%. reporter: the governor's decision to lift the ban on indoor dining to 25% capacity is a bit of a lifesaver. >> we are excited to get our guests back in the restaurant. something we have lost is that excitement and energy you felt when you walked into a restaurant that had guests eating and drinking and dining. it's fun. reporter: without indoor dining, restaurants have had to rely on take-out and delivery service to keep their businesses afloat. in many ways they have been enterprising to make outdoor dining flourish and freezing conditions, like this restaurant in greenwich village, where they created a plastic hut complete with a fake warming stove to keep diners happy in frigid conditions. in fact, all kinds of shelters have emerged to enable hearty
new yorkerso dine curbside. but some outdoor diners won't be eating indoors anytime soon even though governor cuomo has decreed they can. >> i won't go into indoor dining until this is all over. i think you are relatively safe if you're outside and if you are in a dining area, i would be too scared to do it. reporter: health experts caution the return to indoor dining is premature. >> opening indoor dining to me while we are just getting into controlling part of this virus does not seem like the right next step. reporter: though still working in a hospitality business know it's going to be a long slog before the restaurant industry of new york returnso anything like normal. >> will it get backo where it was where you have people shoulder to shoulder, for deep at the bars? i can't see that happening
anytime soon. reporter: the hope is the partial lifting of the indoor dining band will mark the start of a long road back to where new york can once again boasted has e of the most vibrant restaurant scenes in the world. jane: just in time for valentine's day. a quick recap of the top story -- donald trump's legal team has finished making their case for the former's innocence at his second impeachment trial. they argue no thinking person could conclude his speech on the sixth of january was tantamount to incitement of insurrection. only a handful of republicans have indicated their minds are not yet made up. democrats need 17 gop senators to turn against the former leader to get a conviction. think you for watching world news america. have a great w narrator: funding for presentation of this program is provided by.. the freeman foundation.
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captioning sponsored by newshour productions, llc >> woodruff: good evening. i'm judy woodruff. on the newshour tonight: the defense's turn. former president trump's team makes its case for acquitting him, saying he does not bear responsibility for provoking an assault on the capitol. then, a personal account. for the first time, senator patty murray discusses hidg from the violent mob that was inches away when rioters stormed the capitol. >> i've had a hard time talking about this because i don't want those people to ever feel that they had instilled fear in me th kept me from doing what i needed to do.