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February 11, 2021 20 mins

The central question of Trump’s second impeachment trial is: Did he incite rioters to storm the Capitol? To explore that, we can look at the over 200 people that have been arrested and charged so far in the siege. Mostly everyone there was a Trump supporter, some of which said Trump did inspire their actions. Others have been tied to far-right extremist groups, some had ties to law enforcement and the military and some were charged with conspiracy. Tom Dreisbach, investigative correspondent at NPR, joins us for those arrested so far and their stories.

Next, amid some early stumbles and lack of doses hampering the rollout of vaccines, we are seeing hesitancy and skepticism by many health-care workers who are refusing their doses. Many cite the speed at which they were developed and for others it is a trust problem, distrust of the government and even the health care systems they work for. Dhruv Khullar, practicing physician and contributor to The New Yorker, joins us for why so many health care workers are resisting the Covid vaccine.

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Episode Transcript

Available transcripts are automatically generated. Complete accuracy is not guaranteed.
Speaker 1 (00:00):
It's Thursday, February eleven. I'm Oscar Ramirez in Los Angeles
and this is the Daily Dive. The central question of
Trump's second impeachment trial is did he incite rioters to
storm the capital to explore that. We can look at
the over two people that have been arrested and charged

so far in the siege. Mostly everyone there was a
Trump supporter, some of which did say Trump inspired their actions.
Others have been tied to far right extremist groups, some
had ties to law enforcement and the military, and some
were charged with conspiracy. Tom Dreisbach, investigative correspondent at NPR,
joins US for those arrested so far and their stories next.

Amid some early stumbles and lack of doses hampering the
roll out of vaccines, we're also seeing hesitancy and skepticism
by many healthcare workers who were refusing their doses. Many
site the speed at which they were developed, and for others,
it's a trust problem, distrust of the government and even
healthcare systems they worked for. Drew Lar, practicing physician and

contributed to The New Yorker, joins US for why so
many healthcare workers are resisting the COVID vaccine. It's news
without the noise. Let's dive in. I thought I was
following my president. He asked us to fly there, He
asked us to be there, so I was doing what
he asked us to do. So as far as in
my heart of hearts, do I feel like a criminal? No,

I'm not the villain. Joining us now is Tom Drysbach,
investigative correspondent at NPR. Thanks for joining us, Tom, Thanks
for having me. The government now has identified more than
two hundred suspects in the Capitol Hill riots from January six. Um.
They've charged a lot of them, and we're kind of

starting to see a picture of who the people were
that showed up that day. Overwhelmingly they are mostly Trump supporters,
but we're also seeing that a number of them have
made statements saying that did inspire them to go out
there and storm the Capitol. We're seeing connections to far
right extremist groups like the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers.

We're seeing a lot of military and law enforcement out there,
and obviously people that supported conspiracy theories like Q and on.
So Tom, I know they're at NP Are you guys compiled?
Basically the entire list and looking through everybody, what are
we seeing with these people. When we started this project,
we were thinking about how every day it seems we're
getting new charges brought by the Justice Department against people

who are alleged to have taken part in the rioting
and the insurrection at the Capitol. And so what we
wanted to know is are there any commonalities in this group?
And honestly, looking at more than two d criminal cases
that have been filed, it can be hard to find
some trends. I mean, there are people who are alleged
to have committed conspiracy, which is a very serious charge,
and that they allegedly planned the attack on the Capitol

for months, beginning as far back as days after the
November election. And then there's people who allegedly just sort
of were in the crowd and got caught up in
the moment. What unites all of them really is their
support for Donald Trump and in general, this idea that
they bought into the idea that the election was stolen
from Trump and that there was widespread fraud, and really

there's no evidence that either of those things are true.
You had a small portion in one of the articles
I was reading from you guys. To really generalize the
entire group is very difficult. There was people from the
Latin Kings that joined the mob. There was two Virginia
police officers, there was a rabbi that joined the mob,
two types Olympic gold medalists, which we heard a lot about.
You know, there were so many people in there, but

definitely there were commonalities within it. You mentioned conspiracy, So
this is one of the most serious charges that people
can face in this. How many people were charged with
this and I mean these are just the people that
were caught in being charged. You know, obviously if they
were organizing, there might be a lot more people involved
in it. But talk about the ones that we know.
At least, there's around a dozen people so far who

have been charged with conspiracy, and the charges relate to
a handful of cases. In one of those cases, the
government alleges that a group of people associated with the
Oath Keepers, and if people aren't familiar with them, they're
an extremist far right organization that grew up about a
decade ago. They specifically target for recruitment people who are

in the military or who are veterans or law enforcement,
and the government has alleged that people in that group
planned this attack on the Capitol going back for a
while now, the government is also an alleged that members
of the Proud Boys group is far right, often violent
and hateful gang. They also engaged in conspiracy, and in

one of the court documents, there's also an allegation that
one of the Proud Boys said that he was going
to kill Mike Pence if they had the opportunity. So
these are some very serious allegations in these court papers
relating to conspiracy, and those are some of the most
serious charges that people in this large group of more
than two hundred now face. And you mentioned, you know,

the oath keepers and how they try to recruit military
law enforcement. That's one of the things that officials and
lawmakers are really concerned with, is kind of the extremism
crop coming up through these channels. That's one of the
things they're looking into as well. There were a striking
number of military veterans in this group. Around fifteen percent
had law enforcement or military ties by our accounts so far,

and I should say that we continue to add to
this database as more charges are unveiled by the federal
government and in the US, there's about seven percent of
the adult population are veterans, so it seems to be
an overrepresented group in the defendants. It related to the
Capital and experts on extremism say there's not a lot
of evidence that veterans necessarily are more susceptible to extremist ideology,

But the Defense Department does say that extremism in its
ranks is a major issue that they're working to combat.
The new Secretary of Defense, Lloyd Austin, says this is
a top priority for him and the Biden administration. And
there was actually a poll by the Military Times, the
Military publication that about a third of active duty service
members say that they had witnessed personally racist activity or

white nationalist activity, like people with swastika tattoos, that kind
of thing. And so clearly it's an issue that the
military is actively dealing with, and there might be clues
to the extent of that problem in these core papers
related to the Capitol riot. Are there any other stories
of people that stand out to you, because you know,
as we mentioned at the beginning, a lot of people
did say, well, we were following the president, he told

us to come out here. You know, they believe all
this stuff going on. Any other stories that stick out
to you to one extent, I think, in the immediate
aftermath of the attack on the Capitol of the images
that we saw were a little bit misleading. We saw
a lot of footage from the rotunda of people sort
of milling about. It didn't seem that violent. But as
these charges have been unveiled, we have received word and

evidence of really pretty intense violence that was brought on
by these rioters. I'm there's allegations against one man who
is a military veteran who allegedly brought a hockey stick
and beat members of the Capitol police with that hockey
stick repeatedly. Um, there's another allegations of against several other
people that came armed with bulletproof vests or bear spray

like which is an irritant spray, and that they use
that against the Capitol police. And then there are other
people who appeared to have just been along for the chaos.
Of the allegations against one man that I read today
that he went in and found a bottle of wine
inside the Capitol building, which he then chugged. He then
took a book of Senate procedure and then allegedly sold

it to a person for forty dollars, and so the
charges really run the gamlet. It really describes a picture
of absolute chaos and some extreme violence inside the Capitol.
And you know, we're watching a lot of the video
what you just described right now, But the guys stealing
the book and trying to sell that that was one
of the most curious things to me because I was
seeing people on the floor of the Senate, I believe
it was, and they were aifling through desks and looking

for documents and taking pictures, And that was the most
curious thing to me, is like, who knows what a
senator might have left behind when they got evacuated at all,
but it could have been sensitive information. You know. That
was one of the things that really stood out to me,
and the federal government, the Justice Department has pointed that out,
that people were looking at potentially very sensitive information. One
woman allegedly took a laptop from Nancy Pelosi's office. Now

there's word that it was just used for presentations, that
it wasn't necessarily super sensitive national security information. But obviously
when you have an unanticipated breach of the US Congress,
there is a lot of material that it could be
extremely sensitive lying around, and I think we're still really
only starting to piece together how damaging that attack may

have been on a number of levels. Are we seeing
that a lot of people are expressing regret for their
actions on that day. One of the people that I
saw a lot of coverage on was a woman named
Jennifer Ryan. She was a realtor from Texas. She went
out there. She said she believed she was following the
President's orders to go out there, But she has this
whole story of like, you know, I went out there

with some friends. I didn't expect all this stuff to happen.
But she, you know, at the same time, posted pictures
of herself to Facebook, I mean, really documenting herself doing
the actions. But she said she feels really bad, she
feels duped by the whole thing. I think she even
asked for a pardon from President Trump. Obviously she didn't
get one. And this is kind of the sense that
we're getting from her. You know, she's just completely remorseful.

But are other people in this realm as well? It
really runs the gamut so far. I mean, the sense
you get from the court papers is that the people
who went inside the Capitol in many cases, seemed to
expect no consequences for their actions in the moment. I mean,
people were posting on Facebook, on Instagram, they were live
streaming as they were, and now as the Justice Department

alleges committing federal crimes, they were creating the evidence that
would later be used against them in court and possibly
bring some very serious prison time in some cases, and
in the days afterward, I think people's reactions have really varied.
I mean, in some cases, we don't know whether someone
has expressed regret or not, because they're currently in jail

waiting charges because the government thinks they're either a flight
risk or they're a risk for continuing to commit crimes.
In other cases, you know, we have heard people say
I really regretted this. In a couple of cases, people
thought that President Trump was really behind them, and as
you mentioned, Jenna Ryan said she was hoping for a
pardon from Trump that did not happen. So I think
we're starting to get a really wide variety of reactions

as people realize the gravity of what happened at the
capital and a serious prison time in some cases that
they might face. Some people said they expected President Trump
to be marching with them to the capital bility. That's
how that's how deep in they were. The last question
I have is we're going through then impeachment trial right now.
A lot of them are pointing to these all these

instances and these people's words in that trial. But as
far as these defendants, you know, using the defense said well,
we were following the president's orders. What have legal experts
said about how effective that might be of a defense. Well,
it's a potentially very risky legal strategy for these defendants.
I mean with some defense attorneys have said they're going
to use this. One defense attorney apparently went as far

as to say that their client was brainwashed by Trump
into committing these acts. But it's not a position that
defense attorney wants to be in because to use this
defense that you know, Trump egged people on to do this,
you're already essentially admitting that my client did these acts
and I'm trying to bring up mitigating circumstances. So that's

not a position that any defense attorney wants to be in.
But in many cases, as we mentioned, there's people who
were filming themselves inside the capital and creating a ton
of evidence on top of the surveillance footage and officer
police officer body camp footage that's out there, So there
is a mountain of evidence out there against some people.
So they're looking for any mitigating circumstances they can find

to try and use of the defense. Tom Drysbach, investigative
correspondent at NPR, thank you very much for joining us.
Thanks for having me. Appreciate it. Vaccines can take the years,
if not decades, to make, and here we have one

kind of a medical miracle which came out in less
than one year. But that also creates a level of
hesitance to be among the general public, but also among
healthcare workers. Joining us now was Drew Cooler, practicing physician,
assistant professor at wild Cornell Medical College and contributing writer
to The New Yorker. Thanks for joining us, Drew, Thanks
so much for having me. I wanted to talk about

the vaccine rollout and what's going on. We're seeing a
lot of skepticism of the vaccine. There are a lot
of people that are getting it. Obviously, we see the lines,
we see people inundating the websites to make their appointments,
but there's also a lot of skepticism and hesitancy on
the part of medical workers, specifically an interesting thing. You know,
they work in the field, you would think they'd be

more willing for it. You wrote a kind of an
article about looking into a lot of the siennas that
we're working, maybe in the senior living facilities, and a
lot of skepticism and hesitancy that they had, So Drew,
tell us a little bit about what you're seeing. You know,
the reason I wanted to write this article is because
I also found it quite surprising that healthcare workers had

reasonably high levels of vaccine hesitancy, despite seeing the damage
of COVID nineteen firsthand, despite being at higher risk for
infection by passing it on to their loved ones, And
so I wanted to explore what was behind this vaccine hesitancy.
And I think one thing that you'll notice is that
at particularly in nursing homes, it has to do with

a lack of trust in often your employer, a lack
of trust in the healthcare system, and a lack of
trust in the political and the regulatory environment under which
these vaccines were created. We know that they are safe
and effective. Medical science has taught us that and they
were developed at record speed. But I think that also
creates its own issues that people have been told over

the course of the last year that vaccines can take
the years, if not decades to make, and here we
have one kind of a medical miracle which came out
in less than one year. But that also creates a
level of hesitance to be among the general public, but
also among healthcare workers and a lot of the nurses
that you spoke to, a lot of them said the
speed was a big factor and they just said, hey,

there's no way I'm gonna wait to see long term results,
see how other people react once they get it, and
you know, it's an interesting thing. Obviously we've been learning
about the pandemic and vaccine making I think, like in
no other time before, you know, happening in real time.
And the thing with the vaccine, especially like the Fiser
and Maderna vaccines, these m RNA platforms, you know, that

platform for that vaccine was already there. They just needed
that opportunity to be able to tweak something so they
can make it for the coronavirus for COVID nine team.
So that I do understand that kind of the speed
can be scary about it, but that platform was something
that has been worked on for a long time already.
It is something that has been worked on for years.

It's an incredible new technology. But I think this really
gets at the heart of the issue is that it's
not always the case that telling people about the science
and how things were developed is enough to get them
over their kind of desire to watch and wait and
see what happens with the vaccines and others. Often it's
a case of misinformation. A lot of people are getting

their information from sources that may not be reliable. It
can be an issue of just wanting to see how
other people do before they are kind of taking this
into their own body, And it can be an issue
really of trust and understanding that the health care system
or other kind of parties have not treated them in

a way that they've wanted to be treated in the past,
and their understandably skeptical that this seems to be being
forced on them. Now that being said, this is this
is an issue and that we really need to kind
of combat it head on. We need to have these conversations,
we need engage in these dialogues, and we do need
to help people understand that this is the best thing
for themselves as well as our communities. Tell me a

little bit more about the setting of the senior living facilities,
these nursing homes and these certified nursing assistance that we
find a lot of them working in these In these settings,
you know, nursing home residents, it does seem that there
are high levels of vaccine acceptance for them for their
part at least, but the nurses were not seeing it
so much. And then yourself as a practicing physician, do

you see this in other hospital settings or do you
find it more relegated to these nursing home facilities. You know.
One thing that's important to note is we often talk
about healthcare workers as a large group, but of course
there are different professions within healthcare, there are different settings
within healthcare, and so one thing that seems to be
the case at least early on, that nursing home staff

of higher levels of vaccine hesitancy compared to hospital staff,
for instance, and that nurses and doctors seem to accept
the vaccine at higher rates than other healthcare workers. So
there are many healthcare workers. Some you've talked about certified
nursing assistance, licensed practical nurses, people who work in cleaning

services or environmental services, patient transport, and we see that
vaccine hesitancy, at least early on, seems to track with
level of education. So that's one marker, but it also
seems to track, as I mentioned, with other non hospital
facilities like nursing homes and long term care facilities. You know,
one thing to note is that these are really challenging

places to work for a lot of people. A lot
of nursing home staff have felt during the pandemic, but
also before the pandemic, that they haven't gotten a lot
of respect, they haven't always gotten a ppe that they need,
they have worked for relatively low wages, and so these
kinds of issues are very much wrapped up into how
they feel at this moment when they're being asked or

told in some cases to take the vaccine. Yeah, as
you mentioned that, the onset I it does really seem
to be this lack of trust problem. The polarization, the
politicization of the vaccines does also seem to come into
play a lot. You know, a lot of people said
they don't trust either political party and how they positioned
all of it. The trust and government. You know, it's

unfortunate to hear that stuff because we want our healthcare
workers to kind of be leading on the setting. But
if you're not comfortable with it, obviously you're not gonna
want to go forward with that. So it's just an
interesting look to see how it's shaken out. And as
I mentioned, there is no lack of people wanting the
vaccine still, we see that in the numbers, so you know,
we'll see how the rollout continues. Really, I do think

that vaccine acceptance will rise in the general public as
well as among healthcare workers. A lot of the people
that I've talked to have been saying, I don't want
it right now. I don't want to be one of
the first people that gets it because I'm not entirely
sure about this vaccine. But if my friends, if my
call all these my family members, they seem to be
doing okay, then I think I would go ahead and
get it. And so this is entirely possible that it's

really an issue out of upfront, and my hope is
that as people see that these vaccines are safe and effective,
which they are, that vaccine uptake will really continue to
increase among the entire US population as we go forward. Drew,
who are practicing physician, assistant professor at wild Cornell Medical
College and contributor to the New Yorker, thank you very

much for joining us, my pleasure. Thanks. That's it for today.
Join us on social media at Daily Dive, thought in book, Twitter,
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