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tv   MSNBC Live With Katy Tur  MSNBC  February 25, 2021 11:00am-12:00pm PST

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good afternoon. i'm katy tur, it is 11:00 a.m. out west and 2:00 p.m. in the east and it was exactly one year ago today that an official at the cdc told officials that the coronavirus would cause massive disruptions to our lives. >> i had a conversation with my family over breakfast this morning and i told my children that i didn't think they were at risk right now, we as a family need to be preparing for significant disruption of our
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lives. >> at the time that warning was all but ignored by the last administration, but she was right. our world has been ebb tirely up ended. more than half a million americans have died, tens of thousands are businesses are now closed. we can't even see our friends and family or hug them. no we're in a race against time to get back to normal. experts warning that we need to ramp up distribution right now as new trarnts spread that could weaken the vaccine's effectiveness. >> this is a race between the virus and getting vaccines into people. the more people that get vaccinated the better chance the virus has to get a variant or a
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mutation. so the faster we get a vaccine into the arms of individuals, once it gets by, if it is available to you, get it. the new york times is reports that one such new variant may have emerged here in new york city. in we response, the ceo of fooid pfizer says they're considering adding a third dose to the vaccine to further boost immunity. right now joe biden and kamala harris are in a closed door briefing on the virus. in just a few minutes both of them, the president and the vp, will mark 50 million doses on the vaccine. so as we see the light at the end of the tunnel, it is important to keep the clear warning from a year ago in our
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heads as a reminder of what can happen if you don't listen to the experts. joining me isrutger. he is the author very stable genius." and the co-director of the center for vaccine development at text's children's hospital. so phil, we're going to hear from the president today, what should we expect? >> i think you're going to hear president biden explain what his administration has been doing the last several days and weeks to rank up access to the all-important vaccines. to speed up production and distribution. we saw vice president harris visiting a super market pharmacy
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to highlight how they're available in many places like grocery stores and draw attention to the steps the administration has been taking to get shots in the arms more quickly than they have been. >> when we're looking at new variants emerging in this new study, how worried should we be? >> i think we have to be concerned. we know some variants in the spike protein region are causing increased transmissability. they're spreading faster, and that particular variant is showing higher mortality rates that has not been peer reviewed yet but we have to take it seriously. so even though the numbers are declining pretty dramatically we have gone down 75% since van and
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you have to worry that is short-lived. so when you hear that it is declining it is notes a fast as you might have expected. and we know there is a new york variant, and then you have the uk variant in florida, and you have to wonder if that is slowing the decline. but again this gets back to what dr. fauci said, we have to fax nate ahead of this as fast as we can. so we're trying to move faster than that fall time frame and i have think that will be really important. >> what do you make of this plateau? >> yeah, we have had a plateau in the decline in cases and also a plateau in the vaccination rate at about 1 .4 million. last week there was an op-ed
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saying yes everything looks rosey, but there are parents that make us worry that we will be entering another surge. i think that is critical for us to take it seriously. i witch the cdc was doing better surveillance so we had a better idea of how frequently they're out there. they're still doing very small numbers each week. we need to be up to 50,000 per week, and i do think that we need to have a very serious discussion about do we go to postpone second dose, or second dose on the three and four week schedule that moderna and pfizer have tested. it may be better to give more people one dose and come back six to 12 weeks later. and i think that that really needs to be decided urgently if we're go to impact the potential surge from the b. 1.1.k
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7 .variant. >> we spoke about if it should be a single dose for as many people as possible now. i know you have been part of some of those conversations. correct me if i'm wrong, but you are not so sure about that. can you explain? >> well, you know it is an evidence based decision and one of the things we have not seen is the gotten individuals against any of the variants. and you get two doses because it increases the amplitude, but it snufrs that everyone gets to that level. you get a lot of orginaity.
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and it is not that complicated. you have to select the serum, and i would feel a little better. i'm certainly in agreement that we need to tweak everything possible to get more doses into people. we're still sitting on the oxford vaccine. some tell be there are tens of millions of doses. but you know if that is the case it has been released by the european medicine. you can see it has been released. so i'm all for doing whatever it takes to vaccinate the american people if we know that it will work against the new variants. >> one thing that i would say in response, two things that are in response to peter, one is that the latest scottish data suggests that for pfizer you can go on and have a robust antibody
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response. that is very important to get more people vaccinated with them by postponing. that is very important. we're not saying that people should not be vaccinated a second time. i think that the vaccine issue is complicated. they had a messy trial and data and i suspect they're very unhappy about the data and their assurance about their effectiveness. i'm a little disappointed i would say by the johnson and johnson having only a few million doses available, you know, after today when they get the emergency use authorization. they claimed they would produce at risk before the final data
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here in so they could release millions and millions of doses, tens of millions of doses right away. that will help particularly with a lot of vulnerable populations, but not if the next three to six weeks when we need it for these potential variants, and that is, i think, a little disappointing. >> yeah, the white house is expecting more as well. phil, when we are looking at the vaccine that is available, what can you tell us about how the white house is feeling about what is out there and how they feel about astrazeneca and how they feel about what j&j is able to deliver, and how they feel about increasing the supply for the rest of the country to get ahead of these new variants that we seem to be learning about a new one almost every day if not
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week. >> yeah, as they were just referring to they're not pleased that there are not more doses from these new vaccines that are available out there. and frankly they came in on january 20th, surprised to see how far behind the u.s. government was in the vaccine rollout plan. the trump administration called this operation warp speed with a promise to get the vaccine out quickly and fast all around the country but the biden folks came in and realized that there was not the plan that was promised and they have been trying to play catch up. so they feel like they finally got their feet under them, they're hitting about 50 million don'ts for this afternoon. but that is obviously not enough to be vaccinating the people that really need it here in this country. so it is pedal to the metal to try to get the vaccines out. >> everybody, thank you for
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leading us off today. as the vaccine race plays out, so does the race to get relief to families and communities that have been left devastated. they need the help and they need it now. house democrats are set to vote on the plan tomorrow. nearly all republicans remain opposed, but it sounds wonky but it is a critically important decision. will the senate parliamentarian give the go ahead for a minimum wage hike to $15 an hour that most democrats wost. the national minimum wage is $7.25 an hour and it has not been raised in 12 areas. that's one of the things i want to discuss with congresswoman katie porter. we're waiting for the senate parliamentarian, if they don't rule in favor, there is some
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democratic advocates, lawmakers, colleagues, that say the democrats and the vice president should overrule her, what do you think? >> i won't speak into vice president harris's shoes here, but i think the budget, i think the parliamentarian will rule that we can raise the wage through reconciliation. so i'm confident in the answer that we're going to get. i want to be confident for the american name if we do not, for some reason, get this done, a bunch of reconciliation, house democrats will bring this up independently. we simply have to address the fact that families are working full-time and living in poverty. and two really important statistics that i want to give here. one is that over half of the
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people earning minimum wage are over the age of 25. the second is that two thirds of minimum wage workers are women. this is raising the minimum wage as a gender issue if is related to addressing the gender pay gap. i think it is long overdue. >> you are hitting on something that i think is important. we talk about raw numbers, $15 doesn't really translate for what it would mean for the individual making that. for the most a part it is individuals over the age of 25 and mostly women. raising it to $15 an hour up from $7.25 in some places, what does that mean? >> it translates very directly. when you give a low income family more money the first
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thing they do is they buy more nutritious food, and they buy food, they stop going hungry at the end of the month or between paychecks. this will directly translate into improved living conditions. the ability to pay rent. keep a roof over your head, reduce homelessness, and to put food on the table. that's what low income families do when they get a hike in their rates. i think we have to call out people that are opposing the middle age. they're opposing people being able to feed themselves after a hard day of work. >> so senator brawn was on and he said he didn't oppose raising the minimum wage, but he was saying a one-size fits all for every company across america might not work. it may not allow some companies to maintain as many employees. what do you think of that?
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>> we built that in. we built a phase in into the minimum wage. it's not $15 tomorrow, it phases in, and businesses are in the midst of having to make a lot of decisions. so we have also seen, by the way, some of the largest businesses in the country that employ a lot of minimum wage workers. this argument that it will only affect small businessbusinesses this is also about the biggest corporations paying everyone a living wage as well. >> so you have been arguing that the parent tax credit, child tax credit, is not fair to single parents. you're the only single mother in congress. it's not as if single parents have half of the bills as married parents do. the bills are the same. have you gotten anywhere in
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convincing your colleagues to adjust those numbers? >> so the issue here is that the purpose of the child tax credit is to help the child. it's not about the parents marital status. that's why we need to change the bill so every child, regardless of whether or not their parents are married or single, it's the same opportunity to get the child tax credits to have nutritious food, high quality programs. so in my conversations with colleagues, and also with colleagues in the stath. we're very, very encouraged that we understand this is not a vote for adults, it's about children. every child, whether or not their parents are married, unmarried, divorced, ought to have the same ability for high
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quality health care and help with the cost of raising a child. >> why isn't paid parental leave part of the plan? it's another way that families struggle, lose jobs, lose money, it hurts the children, why isn't this part of that relief bill? >> that is a terrific question. i think one of the things that we need to do is really push people to understand, including colleagues across the aisle, people who are single, is paid family leave is not something we do just to help parents. it's not even just to help children. it's a major investment in our economy. if we have parents and women in particular leaving pause of
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childbirth, it puts us behind. we can't afford to lose more women out of the workforce. >> we are one of the only countries that do not have paid maternal leave, and many countries have paid leave for maternal and paternal. and up next, the surprising answer that the president of ercot gave when asked if he could do anything differently. and we hear from a member of the capitol police leadership team. why she says the threat to lawmakers isn't over. first up, two members of
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lawmakers are considering the most sweeping lbgtq bills in history. they are expected to pass but not before the debate got deeply personal at one corner of the capitol. marie newman whose daughter is transgender occupies an office across from marjorie taylor green, she installed a trans-pride flag outside of her office to taylor-green would see it every day.
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taylor-green hung up a poster that says "there are two genders, male and female." >> at her weekly news conference how's speaker nancy pelosi used this confrontation to underscore why the equality act is so necessary. >> and we should -- it breaks my heart that it is necessary. but the fact is, and the fact that we have a sad event here even this morning demonstrating the need for us to have respect. not even just respect, but just take pride. take pride in our lbgtq community. >> joining me now is kate sosan an lbgtq plus reporter for the
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19th. talk to me about the equality act and how far it would go including this in the discrimination decision from the '60s. >> thank you so much for having me. equality act is really the most significant piece of lbgtq legislation ever introduced. congress never actually passed any anti-discrimination legislation for lbgtq people ever. in fact congress passed very little pro-lbgtq period. so it says it is illegal to discriminate against lbgtq people in all of the areas you named. a lot of us think it is illegal
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to discriminate against a queer person if they're, for example, trying to buy a house. that's because most of us feel like well if it's morally wrong or ethically wrong it must be illegal. but less than after of the states, 21 and washington dc have protections on the book that say you can't discriminate against someone. what the supreme court decision did last year is it said that you can't discriminate against someone just on employment. and a lot of people feel like that could have the potential to reach outside of just employment and public accommodations because of the precedence and president biden's executive order aims to do that but because these things change from administration to administration those protections are really
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tenuous. and this would really provide blanket protections for lbgtq people that face discrimination in so many different areas of life. >> what about religious exceptions? >> that's a great question. so religious exemptions are really the sticking point here. they believe it is a religious belief to, as we have seen, someone not making a wedding cake for a same-sex couple. the equality act tries to insert protections for lbgtq people. you can't turn away a black person from a restaurant, and the same thing will be true for a gay person. if you put religious exemptions
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into that bill, you're opening up a can of worms, right? this is the sticking point. we would not say that my sincerely held religious belief makes it okay for me to turn away someone because of their race. that's the sticking point with lbgtq rights advocates and some of the religious groups which is how do you create a separate set of exemptions for one protected class of people. >> i don't want to give more attention to marjorie taylor green, but she says this discriminates against women. >> sure, this is an interesting argument. and i think we lose a critical point which is that the struggles of women and lbgtq people have a lot in common. i'm, of course a reporter at the
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19th that focuses on gender, politics, and public policy and started with a lack of representation of women in media and expanded to lbgtq people. but the point is the same reasons that women your not allowed to vote historically, not to wear pants, men not allowed to cry, are the same reasons that lbgtq people have been discriminated against, which is the constraints of a gender. so it is not really true, right? it doesn't make a lot of sense and in the reporting that we do at the 19th we see over and over again how these things actually just sort of are in concert together. that when you work on lbgtq equality you're actually working
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on women's rights. >> kate sosin, thank you so much for your time. i want to read a tweet from adam kinsinger responding to congresswoman taylor-green. this represents the hate and fame driven politics of self promotion at all evil costs. this garbage must end in order to restore our g.o.p. kate, thank you so much. for the first time the texas power authority was pressed on what went wrong last week when millions of texans were left in the dark. and in a hearing held today, the acting capitol police chief says president biden's first state of the union might be the next target. it is really an address to congress at this point, might be the next target for domestic terrorists been ists bee
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♪♪ it's the easiest because it's the cheesiest. kraft. for the win win. if you smell gas, you're too close. leave the structure, call 911, keep people away, and call pg&e right after so we can both respond out and keep the public safe. covid's still a threat. and on reopening schools,
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we know what happens when we don't put safety first. ignore proper ventilation or rates of community spread, and the virus worsens. fail to provide masks or class sizes that allow for social distancing, and classrooms close back down. a successful reopening requires real safety and accountability measures. including prioritizing vaccines for educators. parents and educators agree: reopen schools. putting safety first. if you see wires down, treat them all as if they're hot and energized. stay away from any downed wire, call 911, and call pg&e right after so we can both respond out and keep the public safe. . >> it was our officer that rendered the aide to her. >> so you're in charge of the
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security on the house floor -- >> it's hard to hear because of the limits of modern technology, we all get it, we have all been doing zoom, but left and right lawmakers were not happy with what they heard today as they tried to untangle the botched security response on the january 6th attack on the capital. it was officials that were in charge of security that day. today before the house it was the current officials that were in charge and they had a chilling warning from the acting chief of the capitol police. >> we know members of the groups that were present on january 6th have stated their desires to blow up the capitol and kill as many members as possible with the direct nexus to the state of the union. and we know that date has not been identified.
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we think it is prudent that capitol police maintain the robust security posture until we address those going forward. >> joining us now is the former chief of the national guard bureau. that's a chilling warning that there are people out there wanting to plan on plowing u p the capitol and kill as many law marcs as possible. >> by the first hearing in the week, and the lack of information they have been to the point, why do we have eight foot high fences.
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that's a good indication of why that security is here and a suggestion of how long it might stay. but they were also frustrated with the other operational failings that contributed to january 6th. like the officers didn't really know how to clear the space when there was an infiltration. that they weren't sure what the use of forces were. little things like that that the current leadership in the form of the facting police chief will have to clean up ahead of that speech. but potentially the next big event on the capitol that at least the intelligence they're listening very closely to are not going to have any more violence. >> as the former chief, given your experience, when you heard that, heard that temperature when you watch this hearing
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today, what was jr. reaction? >> for the national guard to assist other law enforcement agencies in the district of columbia, that's not something knew, that is something that we have shown in the last eight or ten months, when they ask us for support, they can, does, and will respond in such a way as duo in homeland. save lives, protect property, and help preserve piece, public order, and public safety. >> but what do you do when you hear the capitol police cheer say that there is a target on congress for the next big event that congress will hold where all of the lawmakers, the president, and the vice president will be in attendance.
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all of the people involved in that, they have a job to do, to assess the threat and then to properly prepare so that one, hopefully there is some visible deterrent so people don't attempt siege on the capitol like they did on the 6th, and take all of the prudent stepping including augmentation that you might deem necessary. >> when you're talking about the fencing around the capitol, i know there is frustration among lawmakers and others about how difficult it is to get to that building now. when is that fencing, or i guess, did the testimony change the perception of this fencing? is it going to stay up longer? >> i think that is one of the things that has to filter out into the community here and that is part of it, too.
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it is lawmakers that don't particularly like it and it is the dc community. but yeah, i think what we're looking at here and this has been consistent across all of the hearings this week it probably early to mid march. capitol police also said for quite some time they want more robust permanent barriers here. but they need to harden this exterior somehow if they're going to protect it. this is far from the end of it might happen if we're going to increase the outer layer of protection here. it is not the state of the union, the speech to a joint session, but it is also a national security concerns.
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>> it looks and sounds like the state of the union, but it is the first address to a joint session of congress. the first one is not the state of the union. thank you so much. thank you all for joining us today. coming up the biden administration coming under fire after owning -- opening a facility for migrant children. and what was behind last week's massive blackout. did they get to it? blackout. did they get to it my plaque psoriasis... ...the itching ...the burning. the stinging. my skin was no longer mine.
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i'm draymond green with my subway sub with tender steak and melty cheese. my sub is gonna dunk all over your sub. excuse me? my sub has bacon. choose better be better and now save when you order in the app. subway eat fresh. but not jayson's sub. harris county alone has confirmed 15 fatal cases of hypothermia including the death of a 15-year-old.
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who died in his sleep after playing in the snow and returning to his unheated home. we want them and every texan to ensure this never happens again. >> examining the catastrophic power failure in last week's dangerous winter weather. officials said they were dangerously close to losing the entire electric system and came close to losing the gas system as well. and yet the ceo of ercot claimed he would not have don a single thing differently. >> am i missing until here in. >> there has been a lot to
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digest in this hearing, i will start there. they are still taking questions but as you know republicans and democrats in texas have honed in and placed a lot of blame for the failings last week on ercot because they do operate 90% plus of texas's power grid here, but what we're hearing today from the president and ceo is this. he said we did the best that we could and prevented a total blackout of the state. he said they were about 4.5 minutes away from the entire system collapsing and they worked before, during, and after within the rules of the market and they followed all of those rules. listen to this exchange between the ceo and john whitmer, listen
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here. >> i feel responsibility and remorse about the event, and i will continue to investigate, but i believe the operators on our team did everything they could in a dramatic situation. >> you would not have changed anything in terms of your play calling in terms of the critical hours? >> i don't think i would, i don't think i would step in front of them to question your judgment or experience. >> what you did didn't work, i think that is fair to say. >> i would say it kept us from going into a blackout that we would still be in today. that's why we did it. it didn't work for everyone, but it worked to preserve the integrity of the system. >> it worked but it didn't work for people's lives. it is a hard thing to hear people compare the two. he says if they didn't do what they did we could still be in a
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situation in texas where people were without power and water and that could have been an even bigger humanitarian crisis long-term. as you heard earlier, katie, and the thing to keep remembers is that children and people died during this as young as 7 and 11. >> it is so hard to consider. it is so awful. when he talks about not doing anything differently, what about winterizing the pipes. >> that question came up and they said do you have the authority to make people winterize and weatherize these generators. he said no. they can give recommendations, but they don't have any sort of enforcement. he says this is the way the market here is and that's more of a policy question. but in terms of how people are
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operating the requirements everything he says has been done and continues to happen in the bounds of the market here in texas. >> i get wanting to let the market sort things out, but this is an example when the market is not acting in the best interests of everybody. in the case of an merge this is when regulation usually steps in. thank you for joining us, i appreciate it. and pthd biden pledged to unite the children and families separated at the border, we have a update on how that is going, next. te on how that is going, next i mean it... uh-oh, sorry... oh... what? i'm an emu! no, buddy! only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty, liberty, liberty, liberty. ♪ with relapsing forms of ms, there's a lot to deal with. not just unpredictable relapses. all these other things too. who needs that kind of drama? kesimpta is a once-monthly at-home injection
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more than 100 migrant children who were separated from their parents by the trump administration are in the process of being reunited with their families. that's great news but it does come with a caveat. the parents. remaining 506 children have not been found. lawyers say most of those parent were likely deported making reunification more difficult. and that challenge continues as another one approaches. the number of unaccompanied minors crossing the border is rising. joining me now, jacob, we've been talking about this. as the number of unaccompanied minors rises, it means there were some places we thought would be closed forever like homestead that are now reopening. >> i think perhaps the better way to put it, and don't get me wrong. i think that's right. where progressives, some
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progressives had imagined things might go but it is not the reality when you understand the situation on the ground. the facilities you're talking about that have elicited outrage over the hhs temporary influx shelters, i don't think anybody wants them including the folks at hhs. but the fact of the matter is, there is an uptick in young people, unaccompanied chairman coming into the united states. the facilities are getting nearer to capacity. this is not some kind of surge. everybody should understand that. under the law, as it exists today, that is where unaccompanied migrant children must go to be placed into the resettlement system here. if that will be changed by the biden administration, it certainly won't happen in the first days of the administration and the alternative would be keeping them, when people colloquially refer to kids in cages, that's the border patrol stations. that's the other option. if they don't go to these
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facilities, they'll be in cells like we all witness in the 2018 and 2019. >> so a little more complicated than just the headline. what about the reuniting of the number of these children with their families? that's some good news. >> it is good news. as you mentioned, and i think are very right to point out, 506 kids, the parents of 506 kids remain basically missing is not the right term but the federal government hasn't been able to reach them because of the shoddy record keeping of the trump administration. those 506, particularly 322 parents. those children have been deported back to their home country. it is a huge logistical challenge for the biden administration that has promised to reunite all the families that were separated. how do they locate them? how do they bring them back? on top of the 322 departed, there are many more that they do know the whereabouts of that are still separated, that now might
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have the chance to return to the country. there is a lot of work. this is a long, long way from over, whether it is the facilities children are held in or the separated children themselves, and the biden administration is just now getting started on all of this. >> 20 seconds you have left. are they working the governments of other countries to locate these families? >> yeah. that's why the state department is involved in this. and secretary of state is a mental of the task force. i don't think they can do it without international cooperation, quite frankly. >> thank you very much. that will do it for me today. if you're going out, wear a mask. if you're staying in, ayman mohyeldin picks up our coverage, next. n picks up our coverage, next ingredients, testing them and fermenting. fermenting? yeah like kombucha or yogurt. and we formulate everything
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