tv The Rachel Maddow Show MSNBC February 25, 2021 9:00pm-10:00pm PST
thanks to you at home for joining us. we're happy to have you. for the first time since he was inaugurated president joe biden tonight has ordered a u.s. military strike. the pentagon says the president ordered air strikes in syria at around 6:00 p.m. eastern time this evening. this is the statement we got announcing the air strike from pentagon press secretary john kirby. he said, quote, at president biden's direction u.s. military forces earlier this evening conducted air strikes against infrastructure utilized by iranian-backed militant groups in eastern syria. these strikes were authorized in response to recent attacks against american and coalition
personnel in iraq and to ongoing threats to those personnel. specifically the strikes destroyed multiple facilities located at a border control point used by a number of iranian-backed militant groups. this proportionate military response was conducted together with diplomatic measures including consultation with coalition partners. more on that in a moment. the operation sends an unambiguous message, the statement continues. president biden will act to protect american coalition personnel. quote, at the same time we have acted in a deliberate manner that aims to de-escalate the overall situation in both eastern syria and iraq. again, that statement tonight from pentagon press secretary john kirby announcing these u.s. air strikes in eastern syria. now in terms of what these air strikes were in response to, this month in iraq there have been three rocket attacks publicly reported in the space of a week. the most recent in baghdad.
two rockets fired in that attack fell inside the green zone, the heavily fortified area around the baghdad embassy. there were no injuries from those two rockets. on saturday it was four rockets that hit an air base north of baghdad that injured one person. last monday it was a more consequential attack. it was a dozen rockets, last monday, that struck the usually peaceful northern iraqi city of irbil that killed one american civilian contractor and wounded nine other people including several americans at the irbil airport. now it has been widely assumed that it was iranian-backed militia behind these attacks.
iran has denied any direct responsibility. but the attacks have been seen in many quarters as a way of sort of testing the waters with the new biden administration. it should also be noted president biden took office just days after the one-year anniversary of the u.s. killing iran's top revolutionary guard general in a missile strike something iran has promised to take retaliation for. the other context that's important the biden administration just a week ago announced they're ready to hold talks with iran and possibly re-entering the nuclear deal that was designed to keep iran from becoming a nuclear power. that was the deal that president obama entered into with iran that president trump pulled out of. as we've been reporting out the story trying to understand the scale of these air strikes tonight we have just gotten in some tape from the brand-new defense secretary lloyd austin. he spoke with reporters on a flight back to washington. he had been visiting the u.s. military facilities. this was onboard the plane back en route to the u.s. east coast. >> we're confident in the target that we went after. we know what we hit. and we're confident that target
was being used by the same shia militia that conducted the strikes. we're very deliberate about our approach, as you would expect us to be. we allowed and encouraged the iraqis to investigate and develop intelligence and that was helpful in refining the target. >> can you say why this was important to do this, was this your recommendation? >> it was my recommendation. as we said a number of times we will respond on our time line. once again, we wanted to be sure that we had the right targets. >> when did the president authorize the strikes? >> it was today, yes. >> it was today. was it this morning? >> yes, it was this morning. that's all i'm going to say,
guys. >> defense secretary lloyd austin. that was tonight. we just got in the tape moments ago speaking about the first military operation of the biden administration, these air strikes on iranian-backed militias in syria. the administration says they are in response to rocket attacks that targeted u.s. and coalition forces in iraq. you just heard defense secretary austin there say it was president biden who authorized these strikes, and he did so this morning per the defense secretary's read out to reporters tonight. joining us for more is nbc's chief foreign correspondent richard engel. richard, i didn't expect to have you back on the show so soon after talking with you last night on a totally different matter. thanks for joining us on short notice tonight to help us through this. >> not a problem. and i was speaking a short while ago with a senior u.s. official with direct knowledge of this. this was a message to iran and
iranian-backed militias according to this official. and the message was that the united states will no longer tolerate harassment, will no longer tolerate attacks, rocket attacks, missile attacks. and in particular the attack on irbil earlier this month was seen as something of a watershed moment. so this was a message that times have changed, that even though president biden wants to negotiate with iran, this administration does not want to be bullied, does not want to be pushed around and is not going to accept increased military action that put u.s. personnel and allies at risk. so this was a strong message. it was described to me as the carrot -- excuse me, as the stick in the carrot in the stick of diplomacy and deterrence that the u.s. is offering the carrot. they want to get back to talks but they also are using the stick for the first time today and sending this message.
the target that was hit was described as a series of buildings that were used to supply and support these different militia groups. so kind of a border crossing area on the border between syria and iraq. the militias that operate in this area do often cross the border. the fact that the strike took place in syria is also significant. it takes some of the pressure off of the government of baghdad. so this was a very carefully chosen target. it was a calibrated response trying to hit specifically the militia that had been targeting the u.s. forces and u.s. allied forces and also to send a clear message to iran that times have changed. now the official said this is also a message to iran and the militias that things are different than they were under the trump administration, under president trump.
by the way, we almost went to war with iran in a very similar circumstance that we're in right now about a year ago. there were attacks on contractors on bases. the u.s. responded with the attacks that caused many casualties. and then there was the attack on the u.s. embassy in baghdad. and things started to escalate. in this case it sounds like the biden administration is trying to stop that chain of escalation sending a message early but not causing mass casualties, trying to send a message to iran that they don't want to go down the same spiral of events that almost led us to a war a year ago. >> richard, what about the issue of casualties? you've described the location of the target of these strikes, where it is in terms of being near the border but on the syrian side, that these are sites and buildings that were used to supply these iranian-backed militias that are believed to be responsible for these attacks to which this is a retaliation. but were these air strikes
designed to cause casualties among the militia? to kill people? to cause property damage? to disrupt supply lines in terms of weapons being launched from those locations? are we going to get some sort of readout as to whether people were killed and what damage was done? >> at this stage i don't have clarity on that. anytime you carry out a military strike there is a possibility that you're going to cause casualties. but this was not described as a civilian location. it was not described as a barracks or a headquarters. it was described more as a logistical hub. so it is possible that there are casualties. you never know who is on a site unless you have eyes on the ground, unless you're actually there and it's possible that there were some people inside, some guards. who knows?
but it does not sound like this was an intended to cause large numbers of casualties, if any. >> nbc news chief foreign correspondent richard engel staying up into the dead of night and beyond for us. richard, thank you again. i really appreciate you doing this tonight. nice to see you. >> absolutely. >> this u.s. military strike tonight also i will say gives us another lens through which we can try to understand another development story we've been following, what's going on with the administration and saudi arabia. you might remember this time last night, what we led the show with was this expectation that, by now, by this time tonight, we would have a report about the murder of a u.s. journalist. we expected by now to have released a declassified version of a u.s. intelligence report on the murder of "washington post" journalist jamal khashoggi. he was murdered at a saudi consulate in october 2018. he was reportedly dismembered. his body has never been found. in 2018 multiple news outlets including nbc news reported that when the cia investigated that
murder, they concluded with high confidence that that murder of that u.s. journalist was ordered by the crown prince of saudi arabia. now our relationship is toxic and knotted and deeply, ethically screwed up even in the best of times. but the prospect of the crown prince of that country, the guy on the on ramp to be king, the prospect that the crown prince of that country getting elevated to king since that's next in
line after you are crowned prince, the prospect of him serving as king of saudi arabia potentially for decades after he orchestrated the murder and dismemberment of a u.s. journalist, and we know he did it, we have a difficult relationship with them at the best of times. that is harder to take than most things between us and saudi arabia. so the trump administration excusing that. president trump bragging to bob woodward that he saved the crown prince's, forgive me, saved the crown prince's ass, that he got him out of any accountability of that murder of a u.s. journalist is a mess that the trump administration left behind. this time last night, as we reported on the show, we expected the biden administration to release a public declassified version of the cia's report into the killing of khashoggi and the culpability in that killing of the saudi crown prince. we were told by the white house yesterday that president biden intended to speak with the king of saudi arabia, the 85-year-old father of the crown prince, before that report was released to the public. we now know that call has happened. the call between president biden and the saudi king. however, the report on khashoggi's murder has still not been released. the saudi government, meanwhile,
announced the crown prince himself had an emergency appendectomy last night. okay. so maybe that's part of the delay somehow, if we believe them about that or anything. but now with these air strikes in syria and the u.s. announcing that this was carried out together with diplomatic measures including consultation with coalition partners, that raises the prospect that maybe these things are intertwined as well, may be participate of the delay and what we're expecting on the saudi front. it could have been the consultations the administration said it was taking onboard ahead of this strike against iranian-backed militias operating out of eastern syria that have reportedly been firing rockets into iraq. these rocket attacks on sites in northern iraq. a u.s. service member was injured. a contractor working for the u.s. was killed. there was always going to be some u.s. response. the initial statement from the pentagon explaining the air strikes said the u.s. consulted
with coalition partners ahead of air strikes. maybe that somehow is mixed up in this high-stakes stuff going on between president biden and the saudi government as well. this is a lot of explosive things all happening at the same time. we are staying on it. we will let you know more as we learn more. amid a lot of developing stories we are following tonight. another developing story we are following tonight relates to the attack on the capitol, january 6th. one of the outrageous outstanding allegations from that attack, this is something that's never really been answered or explained, was the claim that some members of congress or their staff had led what amounted to reconnaissance tours of the capitol in the days leading up to the attack, that people who took part in the capitol attack may have come to the capitol ahead of time essentially to learn the lay of the land and been toured around the capitol grounds for that purpose by members of congress or their staff. that allegation has been out
there since the immediate aftermath of the attack. today ohio congressman, tim ryan, head of a committee that has key jurisdiction, said those allegations are now with federal law enforcement. >> i was wondering if you'd gotten any update about concerns about any house members giving tours to rioters on january 5th, if that's still seen as a concern and contributing factor to what happened on the 6th and whether the threat level of other members of congress is a concern? >> thanks for asking that. that is in the hands of the u.s. attorney here in d.c. now. they are reviewing the footage, that whole case is with the u.s. attorney. we don't have any visibility on that at all. we know they are looking at it and it's been turned over to
them. >> federal prosecutors office in d.c., the u.s. attorney's office, is reviewing footage of those alleged reconnaissance tours given by republican members of congress or their staff in the days leading up to the attack on the capitol. that is an important advance in that story. if members of congress or their staff are being -- if their actions are being reviewed by the top federal prosecutor in d.c. to see whether that was aiding and abetting and preparing for the capitol attack, wow. we will talk with congressman tim ryan in a couple minutes. the u.s. capitol police chief described a previously unknown threat from right-wing militia groups to attack the state of the union address, to try to kill members of congress and administration officials gathered for the state of the union address in a joint session of congress. we'll talk with congressman tim
ryan coming up as well and more. tonight the parliamentarian of the u.s. senate issued her hotly awaited ruling on whether or not the democrats can include a hike in the minimum wage in their big covid relief bill this is the big covid relief bill that president biden made his first priority in terms of what legislation he wanted to get through congress. that bill is set, we think, to pass the house tomorrow. it will pass the senate soon thereafter. no republicans support the covid relief bill which is astonishing in its own right. this is the funding for the vaccine rollout. no republicans support it. because of that it means democrats will pass this thing using a process called budget reconciliation.
parliamentarian issued her opinion that a rise in the minimum wage doesn't make the cut. it doesn't fit those rules. and so the democrats shouldn't include it in the bill if they want the bill to be passed under rules that will allow it to pass with just 50 votes. now this isn't a total surprise but the ruling really could have gone either way, and now is a question of what the democrats are going to do next. a few things can happen from here. the democrats could ignore the
along with the ruling, that will mean the minimum wage, the hike in the minimum wage won't be in the covid relief bill. they're going to have to try to pass it some other way. we haven't had a minimum wage hike in 12 years. are we really not going to have one now either with huge public support for it, with a desperate need for economic stimulus for
low-wage americans, with democrats in control of the white house and the house and the senate, are we really not going to get a rise in the minimum wage because the minority in the senate doesn't want it? apparently zero republicans support the minimum wage. it is widely popular in the united states and the house will pass by majority rule tomorrow. it has huge public support, just like the covid relief bill has huge public support but no support among republicans on capitol hill. unless democrats get rid of the filibuster by which the minority power gets to flex its muscles in the senate, unless they get rid of the filibuster, republicans in the senate will stop 27 million low-wage
americans from getting a raise by raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour. that would be a hugely unpopular outcome. it would be literally and truly undemocratic minority rule as an outcome. that's where it's heading unless they get rid of the filibuster. we'll have more on that with paul krugman ahead tonight. there's lots of developing news we're watching tonight. we believe president biden, even with these military strikes tonight and everything else going on, we believe he is still on track to go to texas tomorrow, even though the winter storm is over as of last night more than 800 public water systems were still on a boil water advisory. more than 30 public water systems in the state still weren't providing water to senator schumer and the democrats will take up the equality bill and soon. but, again, here we go.
as long as they keep the filibuster rule in place and the fact that the equality bill is opposed by a minority party in the senate means that it won't pass. the minority republicans will be able to block it even though they don't have a majority of the votes. the democrats absolutely could pass the equality act if they got rid of the filibuster just like a hike in the minimum wage if they got rid of the filibuster. but we're there already. we are already up against that stuff. we'll see what they do. today was the fourth day of five for which u.s. flags have been flying at half-staff to honor the more than 500,000 americans who have died from covid in the past year. today dr. murthy testified at his confirmation hearing to become the next surgeon general of the united states, a role he held during the obama administration. dr. murthy testified he has lost seven members of his own family to covid-19. seven people in his family.
u.s. covid deaths are still dropping though not as steadily as they were for the past few weeks. "the new york times" today highlighting one very bright spot in the covid numbers, which is that both new cases and deaths in u.s. nursing homes have been dropping incredibly steeply. more steeply than the numbers at-large in the country and that, of course, correlated with nursing home populations prioritized for vaccines. it suggests that as larger and larger proportions get vaccinated we will see sharp improvements in case numbers and hospitalization numbers and death numbers for everyone just like we're seeing them in nursing homes now after nursing homes were targeted intensely for first vaccination efforts. white house chief of staff ron klain saying in their first week in office, the first week after
the inauguration, it was 8% of americans over the age of 65 who had received one dose of the vaccine. now, five weeks later, nearly half of all americans over the age of 65 have received at least one dose of the vaccine. from 8% to nearly 50%. that is a huge leap in just five weeks. overall the administration marked 50 million doses of vaccine being administered to americans. some they will evaluate the new one shot, one dose vaccine from johnson & johnson. if that advisory committee gives the thumbs up to the fda and the fda agrees with the recommendation, that means that vaccine will be our third approved vaccine in this country and millions of doses of that johnson & johnson one dose vaccine will start shipping out early next week. the biden administration keeps broadening the response as well. this week they announced they'll start shipping tens of millions
of american-made, high-quality washable cloth masks to food pantries and to community health centers. the trump administration had reportedly early on considered a proposal to mail out masks, packages of four or five masks to every family in the country via the u.s. postal service. the president was very afraid of masks, and so that never went anywhere. could have made a huge difference had they done that. the biden administration has revived the proposal but change it had so they won't be counting on the postal service to send to american homes directly. they'll be sending it to food pantries and community health centers. so people who use those community resources will be able to get high-quality american-made masks for free at
those places. again, trying to remedy some of the inequities in terms of people's access to things to keep them safe during this pandemic. on the other end of the spectrum in terms of american government response the 101st airborne today just announced a new deployment, 130 soldiers from the 101st airborne will be deploying to orlando to help with vaccination efforts. we are prepared to answer the call no matter the mission, no matter the challenge, proud to be part of this whole of government team. everything from food pantries to community health centers to the 101st airborne division. and, of course, the whole of government effort includes the huge stimulus and covid response funding including billions of dollars to run the accelerating vaccine effort that's all in the covid relief bill. again, the news tonight that as the house is poised to pass it as soon as tomorrow in the senate the parliamentarian there
says the bill cannot include a big raise in the minimum raise which would be a big part of the economic stimulus in the bill. the impact of that decision, what else we should be watching for there. we have a nobel prize winning economist to help us with that coming up. stay with us. ♪ hey now, you're a rock star, get the show on, get paid ♪ ♪ and all that glitters is gold ♪ get 5 boneless wings for $1 with any handcrafted burger. only at applebee's. itchy? squirmy? scratchy? family not getting clean? with any handcrafted burger.
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59% of americans support the democrats' plan and president biden's plan to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025. 59% support. earlier this month the quinnipiac poll found basically the same thing. 61% of americans support raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour. it's very, very popular. in 2020, in november 2020, donald trump narrowly won the state of florida, even as he went on to lose the presidential election in the country at-large, but that same election in that same state, the same florida voters who voted narrowly to re-elect trump, they also voted overwhelmingly in the same election in favor of raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour. it passed by 61% to 39%, even as that same electorate voted to re-elect trump. we saw the same thing happen in arizona. joe biden won arizona in 2020. but in 2016 trump won arizona.
and that year, 2016, the same voters in arizona who voted to elect trump president also voted overwhelmingly to increase the minimum wage in the state of arizona. you see that happen all over the country every time you ask, whether you ask about a state minimum wage or pollsters are doing now the national minimum wage, the public wants to raise it. we haven't had a federal minimum wage rise in 12 years. tonight the parliamentarian ruled a minimum wage increase can't be allowed in the democrats' covid relief package which the house is due to pass tomorrow and the senate is due to pass soon thereafter. that means the only way left to pass the immensely popular $15 an hour minimum wage would be to have vice president kamala harris overrule the senate parliamentarian. no signs that she's planning on doing that.
barring that, democrats will have to convince not only every member of their own party but ten republican senators to get onboard with their plan since no republican senators appear to be onboard with raising the minimum wage, that seems impossible. the other way they could get it done is to get rid of the filibuster. there's no sign they're planning on doing that anytime soon. all these procedural fights work their way out and we watch to see what the democrats are going to be doing, don't lose sight raising the minimum wage is more popular than free ice cream and videos of kittens righting roombas. can't they find a way to get there, and how important would it be for the economy, for the health of the american economy for them to do it. joining us now is nobel prize winning economist, columnist paul krugman, author of the book "arguing with zombies." mr. krugman, it's really nice of you to be here tonight.
thanks for making time. >> glad to be on. >> what do you make of the now diminished prospects for a rise in the minimum wage passing through congress and being signed into law anytime soon? >> well, it's certainly a shame. raising the minimum wage turns out to be one of those things that is both extremely popular and a really good idea. it's been a real revolution in labor economics over the past 25 years. there's now overwhelming evidence a rise in the minimum wage within this kind of range is almost completely positive. it will not lead to significant job losses.
minimum wage increases everywhere they've been tried in united states have had positive effects, unmeasurable effects. it's a really good policy. this is bad. it's not -- there's still a lot of good stuff in the covid relief bill. most of the good stuff remains. the silver lining you can force republicans to stall the vote. here is something that is good economics the public overwhelmingly supports and your name will be on it saying no. and no dodging behind, well, there's other stuff in the bill i don't like. there is at least some silver lining to making it a straight up-and-down vote on raising the minimum wage. >> there are a couple of republican senators who have come forward in the middle of this process and said they would support a much smaller rise in the minimum wage. they would support a minimum wage rise to $10 instead of $15. i don't know democrats, if they agreed to that, there would be ten republicans who would agree to that. given the impact of a tiny rise like that is it worth it in your estimation for democrats to have those conversations? >> that's a very difficult
political judgment. i don't consider myself an expert on that. it doesn't have to be 15. if it could have been done through reconciliation it would have been 15 and gone for the full 15 although i will admit that even some democrats, democratic economists are nervous. $15 is fine in new york, fine in california. not clear if it might be pushing it a bit in alabama. it was well worth doing. you're not going to be able to do that if there's a smaller number, $10 is minimalist. if $12 could conceivably actually pass, i'll take it. but the reality is i think basically we're going to be looking at something that republicans will try to find excuses for not supporting but then you get to use it against them in the next elections.
>> do you think the covid relief bill without a minimum wage hike is going to be right sized for the economic challenges that we've got now? do you think that as a stimulus measure this is the right target? >> it's mostly not stimulus. that's a cause of mine. it's disaster relief. we're still in the middle of a pandemic. we still have millions and millions of workers who can't work because it's not safe for them to work. and we need to get them through that. we need to get businesses through that. it's not mostly about boosting the economy although it will have that effect as well. and it's a very big bill. it's remarkable, actually, we're about to get something that is this big. i'm not -- i'm in a camp that says that's okay. it's going -- the economy will probably be running pretty hot by this time next year, but we could use an economy that runs
hot for a while. this is not 1979. we're not going to see inflation exploding. much better to err on the side of a bill that's somewhat bigger and might turn out to be a bit bigger than we need but that's much less of a risk than a bill that's too small which is, after all, what happened to obama. this is still a -- i'm kind of almost pinching myself. i can't believe we're about to get a bill that is as good, not perfect, and i missed that minimum wage, but we're about to get a bill as good as it appears we're going to get. >> nobel prize winning economist paul krugman, it's a real pleasure to have you here tonight. thank you for your time. >> thanks for having me on. as i mentioned at the top of the show congressman tim ryan will be joining us. he broke some big news today related to the attack on the capitol and federal prosecutors reviewing the actions of members of congress and their staff as to whether or not they essentially helped the rioters case the joint ahead of the attack on the capitol on january 6th.
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finally a development on this scary story. we learned right after the capitol attack from multiple members of congress that the day before the attack, the day before january 6, some members of congress may have given a group of visitors, multiple groups of visitors, access to the capitol for what amounted to reconnaissance tours ahead of the attack on the building the next day. democratic congressman tim ryan from ohio chairs the house subcommittee and has had a leading role in the investigations into january 6th. a reporter from "the examiner" asked him about the alleged recontours by staff before the attack. he said the issue is now, quote, in the hands of the u.s. attorney in d.c. he says that federal
prosecutor's office is, quote, reviewing the footage of those alleged recon tours. tell me more. a hearing was held on the breakdown in law enforcement that led to the capitol being breached. even after his hearing there are more questions than answers. what we did learn is the threat posed by the rioters, particularly the ones who broke into the capitol and evaded arrest, pose a live active threat to the capitol. this was the acting chief of capitol police testifying at the hearing today. >> we know that members of the militia groups that were present on january 6th have stated their desires that they want to blow up the capitol and kill as many members possible with the state of the union. we know that date has not yet been identified. >> head of the capitol police saying militia groups want to launch another attack on the day
joe biden hosts what looks like the state of the union, his first joint address to congress, which is expected to take place sometime next month. joining sus congressman tim ryan, democrat of ohio. he chairs the committee that has oversight over the capitol police. he's been leading one of the inquiries into the january 6 attack. it's nice of to you make time to be here tonight. some of the rioters in advance of the attack. can you tell us anything more about that? >> yeah, not really, rachel. no one ties it together better than you do, but the u.s. attorney has the investigation
going on now. i'm sure they're looking at the footage, looking at everything surrounding that idea of members of congress taking people on tours. there were other members of congress who witnessed that happening, so that's in their hands now and anybody who has dealt with the u.s. attorney doing an investigation, it's like a black box. you really don't know what's going on but you know it's happening. >> it was also new to us today when the new head of the capitol police said they had intelligence militia members may want to come back and attack the capitol again on the occasion of the state of the union, the president's first joint address to congress. was that news to you as well? that sent a real shock wave, i think, across the country, everybody watching that hearing today. >> yeah, yeah, it was stunning. we hear these kind of threats all the time. the capitol, members of congress, especially in the last couple of months, assassinations and all of that especially after january 6th.
but this was new, which is why we have to keep the national guard here, which is why we have to come up with some real hard core solutions as to how we move forward. we're not ready yet to take the fence down because we don't have a plan moving forward. and i think it's important for the american people to hear these threats but to hear the reporting on it because the american people need to know. the most important thing here, rachel, these are american citizens. this is not al qaeda. this is not the taliban. this is not the iranians. this is american groups, these are american citizens who are saying these things about taking down the capitol, taking down representative democracy. and it just shows i hope, in most peoples minds how far along we have and why we have to be so
vigilant to try to protect the capitol. >> congressman tim ryan, thank you for being here. i know the infirp quires are going to continue for a long time. to the extent you're able to keep us up to date, thank you, sir. sir. >> we sure will, thanks. ever notice how stiff clothes can feel rough on your skin? it's because they rub against you creating friction. and your clothes rub against you all day. for softer clothes that are gentle on your skin, try downy free & gentle. just pour into the rinse dispenser and downy will soften your clothes without dyes or perfumes. the towel washed with downy is softer, fluffier, and gentler on your skin. try downy free & gentle. recognized by the national psoriasis foundation and national eczema association. (announcer) do you want to reduce stress? shed pounds? do you want to flatten your stomach? do all that and more in just 10 minutes a day
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really hemd production tonight, has been really running things, is about 30 seconds from giving birth. and so i just want to say a big shout out to my staff. more than usual tonight. "the rachel maddow show" producers are always amazing. but to senior producer jen, who did an amazing job stressful circumstances while being essentially on the precipice of giving birth, i the bonus that's appropriate for this is, but i at least get to embarrass you about it on tv all right. that does it for us tonight. we will see you again tomorrow now it's time for "the last word" with lawrence o'donnell. good evening, lawrence >> good evening, rachel. so jen once again goes above and beyond the call of duty. >> seriously first of all, she is like the crisis manager of the rachel maddow show staff in every circumstance, but at this point she's like 15 months pregnant as far as i can tell. and like it's going to happen. like we're there and you know, she's just like running everything calm as a cucumber tonight while i blew