- How old am I:
- I love:
- Eye tint:
- I’ve got brilliant gray eyes but I use colored contact lenses
- What is the color of my hair:
Nowhere has this been more clear than in the rhetoric of conservative pundits. They decry gender-neutral toy potatoes as liberal overreach but see no problem with demanding the reation of someone who admitted to feeling emotional about an inauguration.
Trump campaign allegedly used money bomb scam and tricked MAGA supporters out of millions. Some business leaders are speaking out against GOP voter suppression, and black business leaders demanding corporate America condemn it.
Donors allegedly got vaccine deals after giving money to Florida governor. I am Ari Melber.
And later tonight, the con exposed. New damning testimony came today in this trial of Officer Chauvin who killed George Floyd. With his own boss, the Minneapolis police chief, a superior who fired this defendant one day after seeing the now infamous video. Well, this chief is testifying about why the force caught on that tape was excessive. Floyd was no longer responsive and even motionless, to continue to apply that level of force, that in no way, shape or form is anything that is by policy.
He got fired for mistakes on the job. But it goes further. It shows the jury while well beyond simply violating policy or the police rules, how that excessive force, according to the chief, could be criminal. The third. And we are just six days into the trial. Floyd was no longer offering up any resistance to the officers, they could have ended their restraint.
Full stop. Indeed, after firing him for that conduct he did say, quote, "This was murder.
And he said repeatedly that he thought that the conduct that Derek Chauvin undertook that day was far in excess of what was necessary to restrain Mr. Floyd, that as soon as Mr. Floyd was subdued, the kneeling on the neck should have stopped. And in fact, it was far outside of what is required and what is taught to officers in Minneapolis. Floyd to be actively aggressive during that short video.
Floyd was alive at that time.
And so I think, you know, all of the testimony that we saw last week with people being shocked and calling the police on the police, they were right in doing so, and it aligns with what the chief said. Chauvin was acting within the scope of his duties, that what he was doing was reasonable. And again, as Fatima says, this confirms everything that the other first responder said.
It confirms what was said by those bystanders. And again it makes clear that this was a climate in which Officer Chauvin knew that something was going -- this was untoward and he refused to stop.
And again, we are in the prosecution phase of this trial. But six days in, three officers condemning this as excessive force is quite damning testimony to say nothing of the video evidence, the power of that, the humanizing of the other witnesses. And you have to look at that totality. We saw that previewed in the opening. This was a preview of that here on cross today. Take a look. I felt that at the time based on the information I had, it was more likely than the other possibilities.
This is a part that can seem more technical. But it seems like part of the debate here is what did he die of and what caused that? And is there a way for the defense to put in some sort of doubt around whether this was really caused by the officer?
As you say, the government has the uphill battle here. All the defense has to do is to inject doubt, that there were other substantial causes here. So his drug use, the fact that he may have had a pre-existing medical condition. They wanted to show that asphyxia, basically choking him to death, was the cause of death.
And the cross that we just saw was again the defense seeking to inject doubt, that there were other ways that you could show, drug use could be a potential cause of losing oxygen. Cardiac arrest could be a cause of losing oxygen. That simply asphyxia was not necessarily the work of Mr. Chauvin and his conduct on that day. It could be like a bullet through the brain. You say, OK, this is what happened. What if this was related to this other stuff? I heard a witness say well, you can be asphyxiated by drug use so that could be a contributing cause.
Your view of all this, Fatima. The typical approach is to paint him as someone who has engaged in bad conduct. And I think, if you go back to the affirmative testimony, it is hard to see. His original testimony was that it was basically asphyxiation. We have our shortest break right now, just 30 seconds. But coming up, Matt Gaetz has a new defense on these sex crime allegations against him. And Neil Katyal is here. The Republican congressman is trying to come out publicly and make it clear that he is, quote, "absolutely not reing.
He says these charges are false and specifically denies that he ever, quote, "paid for sex or slept with a year-old," end quote. Gaetz also uses this as a time to add that he does expect more leaks from the investigation which he referred to as stemming from the, quote, "corrupt Justice Department. And white Gaetz may try to turn this into some Woman want sex tonight Melber of partisan brawl, very few Republicans have been coming to his public defense later. Neal, this is a scandal here. What do you see in his response today and where would this likely go based on your knowledge of these probes in general?
And so in that sense, I agree with that one point in his article. Then he says Tucker Carlson met her.
And so my strong advice to him, my professional advice to him is to shut up. They thought they could get away with anything.
And, Ari, you mentioned that article that he wrote, the op-ed in his defense. This investigation was opened by Bill Barr.
He thought it was credible enough to continue the investigation. This is not a guy who was shy about shutting down investigations against Republicans. Bill Barr did repeatedly.
I will not be intimidated or extorted. He has not been charged, but if he thinks the facts will acquit him, then obviously he can move forward in that standing. He sounds more like someone who was girding for a bigger battle with the Garland Justice Department. I mean, even Donald Trump is not defending Matt Gaetz right now. I mean, they can try.
I mean, Section which involves bringing a minor or traveling for sexual intercourse with a minor, has a punishment of 30 years. And, you know, sometimes the personal is not political.
Because this is someone who really was of the school of using the government post to try to go on FOX News and right-wing media. And there were so many other things.
And I wonder how investigators parcel this out. Obviously, his political views are protected and they are what they are. I mean, he is most famous for wearing as you say that gas mask. And I appreciate your measured point there, which is good for everyone to keep in mind. We all have the right to our opinions. We call it "Law School on the Fly. We have a lot more on the program tonight.