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tv   The Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer  CNN  July 13, 2020 3:00pm-4:00pm PDT

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a sweeping rollback of california's reopening, as the coronavirus surges in that state and across much of the country. governor gavin newsom is again shutting down indoor operations, including restaurants and bars. this as the state's two largest school districts, they have now announced they won't reopen next month. there's growing pressure for action, as new cases are on the rise in 35 states right now. the u.s. coronavirus death toll now exceeds 135,000 and nearly one out of every 100 americans has been infected. but tonight, the president is again fueling conspiracy theories and denying facts. the white house is defending his retweet of a game show host's totally baseless claim that the cdc is lying about the virus in order to help democrats win in november. and the administration is denying an attempt to discredit dr. anthony fauci, despite a memo that clearly tried to do just that. let's go to california first.
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cnn's nick watt is on the scene for us. nick, the state is taking a huge new step to try to get the virus under control. >> reporter: a massive step, because the governor says this virus is still spreading. it was really interesting listening to dr. anthony fauci today. he said that as a country, we never entirely shut down. that's why we plateaued at a low of above 20,000 new cases every single day. then we reopened. we're now up to about 60,000 cases. and now we are seeing spikes in places like texas, florida, and here in california. you mentioned, wolf, 1 in 100 americans have now been infected. here in los angeles, it's 1 in 75. california is closing down again. >> effective today, requiring all counties to close their indoor activitactivities. restaurants, wineries, movie theaters, family entertainment centers, zoos and museums, card
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rooms, and the shuttering of all bars. >> reporter: for counties like los angeles on the governor's watch list of the worst, there's even more shuttering. >> fitness centers, places of worship, offices for non-critical sectors. personal care services, that includes hair salons, barbershops, and indoor malls. >> reporter: meanwhile, florida is smashing records. more than 15,000 new covid cases sunday, the most logged in any state, any day, ever. >> we have to get control of these numbers. these numbers are out of control. >> reporter: disney world just opened two parks, but if you don't wear a mask, you won't get the photo from your ride. seriously, that's part of the enforcement. >> we can turn this thing around in two to three weeks, if we can get a critical mass of people wearing face coverings. >> reporter: but there's no federal mandate. meanwhile, in texas, the average daily death toll just doubled, in a week. harvard researchers say these eight states should also roll
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back reopening. >> you don't necessarily need to shut down again, but pull back a bit. >> reporter: dr. fauci says in large part because -- >> people in some states who went from shutdown to complete throwing caution to the wind. >> reporter: atlanta already rolled back to phase i. the mayor and her family recovering. >> we are a textbook example of how quickly this virus spreads. we had one child in the house who was asymptomatic. i was also asymptomatic and my husband doesn't have any underlying health conditions, and this has hit him really hard. >> reporter: internal cdc documents uncovered by "the new york times" suggest fully opening k through 12 schools and colleges would be the hardest risk option, and that's what trump administration wants. >> it is a political roll of the dice for us, and we are the dice. the teachers in the classrooms.
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>> reporter: los angeles's second largest district in the nation just said school will start back in august, online only. there is a way out of all of this. new york city opened slowly, man dated masks and just reported no deaths from covid-19 in a day. zero. now, worldwide, wolf, we have just passed 30 million covid-19 cases. nearly a quarter of them are here in the united states, in this country where we have the biggest economy on earth, plenty of money, many great minds, but we are doing something or many things very, very wrong. wolf? >> i think it's fair to say there's been a major, major failure in all of this given the numbers we're seeing right now. nick watt, thank you very much. let's go to the white house where the administration has been taking direct aim at dr. anthony fauci, as the renowned infectious disease expert has been publicly disagreeing with
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president trump. our chief white house correspondent, jim acosta, is joining us. jim, we saw evidence of a campaign to try to discredit to undermine dr. fauci. now the president says there's nothing to see here. >> that's exactly right, wolf. white house officials appear to be backing off after taking some jabs at dr. anthony fauci over his comments about the coronavirus pandemic. the president and other officials are now saying on the record that mr. trump and dr. fauci have a good working relationship. that's notable, given the fact that some aides to the president have been spending the last couple of days trashing fauci, even sending out opposition research about the doctor, anonymously, to reporters. after spending days railing against dr. anthony fauci, president trump and his top aides seem to be pulling back from what appear to be a campaign to undermine one of the nation's most trusted health experts. >> i have a very good relationship with dr. fauci. i have had for a long time, right from the very beginning. i find him to be a very nice person. i don't always agree with him. no, i get along with him very well. i like him.
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>> reporter: even though his access to the president is all but cut off and his tv appearance has been blocked by white house officials, it is fauci who is still offering americans a dose of reality. warning the coronavirus pandemic remains a danger to the public. >> we haven't even begun to see the end of it yet. but until you get it completely under control, it's still going to be a threat. >> reporter: even as coronavirus cases reach record numbers in multiple states over the last few days, white house aides have blasted fauci anonymously, telling reporters several white house officials are concerned about the number of times dr. fauci has been wrong on things. >> why not have the guts to trash dr. fauci with your own names? >> so, president trump -- i'll refer you back, there's no opposition research being dumped to reporters. the notion that there's opposition research and that there's fauci versus the president couldn't be further from the truth. dr. fauci and the president have always had a very good working relationship. >> reporter: while sometimes questioning the expertise of fauci, who was once awarded the presidential medal of freedom, mr. trump appears to be putting his faith in people who aren't scientists, re-tweeting this
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tweet from former game show host, chuck willery, who claims, the most outrageous lies are the ones about covid-19. everyone is lying, the cdc, the media, democrats, our doctors, not all but most we are told to trust. even though he has just recently embraced wearing a mask and is still downplaying the threat posed by the virus -- >> we're at about 135,000 and we'll be somewhat higher than that by the time it ends. >> reporter: mr. trump is offering up a new conspiracy that unnamed forces are working in cahoots to keep schools closed to damage his re-election chances. >> we have to open the schools, we have to get them open, and i think there's a lot of politics going along. i think they think they'll do better if they can keep the schools closed in the election. i don't think it's going to help them, frankly. but i think they feel that by keeping schools closed,s that a bad thing for the country, and therefore that's a good thing for them. >> reporter: that came a day after education secretary betsy devos falsely claimed there is no health risk in sending children back to school, when
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it's likely some students will pass the virus on to eeteachers. >> there is nothing in the data that would suggest that kids being back in school is dangerous to them. in fact, it's more a matter of their health and well-being that they be back in school. >> reporter: former white house chief of staff, mick mulvaney, is acknowledging there have been problems with the administration's response, writing in an op-ed on cnbc's website, i know it isn't popular to talk about in some republican soir circles, but we still have a testing problem in this country. >> my reaction is that we've tested -- we lead the world in testing. >> reporter: as for his decision to commute the sentence of former trump campaign adviser, roger stone, the president is standing by the controversial move that was opposed by some top officials in his own administration. >> i'm getting rave reviews for what i did for roger stone. >> reporter: attorney general barr who said he approved of the stone prosecution is now praising the president. >> first, let me say what an honor it is for me to serve
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under a president who is such a strong supporter of law enforcement. >> now, as for dr. fauci, the last time he spoke with the president was on june 2nd, more than a month ago. and white house officials concede it would be difficult to fire fauci. i'm told fauci believes the best thing he can do at this point is to continue to tell the truth about the virus to the american people and that he has accepted the fact that he cannot do much to stem this criticism, occasional coming from the white house. fauci has served presidents from both partieses. besides his experience in infectious diseases, he also appears to understand just how to survive here in washington, wolf. >> dr. fauci has served six presidents, democrats and republicans, jim acosta, thank you very much p. now let's bring in dr. vivek murthy and dr. peter hotez is with the baylor college of medicine. dr. murthy, california taking a very big step backwards, shutting down all activities statewide. you're in florida right now,
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you're down in miami which just set the record for the highest number of new cases reported in a single state over the past few months or so. do other hot spots, do you believe, dr. murtmurthy, need t follow california's example right now? >> thank you, wolf. it's good to be with you tonight. the measures that california took to pull back on indoor gathering and these are exactly the right measures that need to be taken in many places. what we have seen and learned over the last several months with this pandemic is that half measures do not work. and unless we do everything we can now, we are only going to prolong this pandemic and prolong the loss of lives and the suffering that we've already sustained. what that means is that states that are experiencing major outbreaks, which include florida and texas and arizona and parts of california, south carolina, these states need to, one, require that masks be used in
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public and pull back on allowing bars and restaurants and other indoor activity to take place. because this is what we know facilitatie ins the spread of t virus. the truth is, even if we did that, that would just buy us time. the question we have to ask ourselves is how do we use that time to prepare once we start to relax restrictions, once case loads come down? that means we've got to invest in expanding testing, in contact tracing capacity, this is the same playbook that we knew we had to execute in the earlier part of the year in march and april. but as a country, we failed to do that. and so we have another opportunity to do that, but it's going territory us getting the case loads down. it's not going to be easy, but it's what we have to do. >> dr. hotez, dr. fauci says, we don't need to shut down just yet, but we haven't seen the end of it yet. what's your perspective from houston? that's another hot spot right now? >> if you look, wolf, at the
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trend and the line going up, it's accelerating rapidly. we were at 40,000 cases a couple of weeks ago. 50,000 new cases per day. now we're at 60,000 cases. that number is still climbing. so there is no end in sight. this doesn't go away by itself, wolf. this requires intervention and it's going to require a federal plan. these are -- you know, i know people use the word "hot spots." these are not hot spots, this is a massive resurgence of our covid-19 epidemic sweeping across the southern half of the united states. we're out of control right now. and until there's this federal plan that lays out a strategy for all of the states and looks at what we have to do to get close to containment mode, we'll continue along this terrible path. it's not even conceivable that we could open schools right now in most of these southern states, because the minute we do that, teachers are going to start to get sick, bus drivers
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will start to get sick, school cafeteria workers will start to get sick and it will happen within a couple of weeks. and the whole thing shuts down again anyway. so there is no plan, there is no -- there is not even an attempt to really be frank with the american people about the problem. you heard what the press conference today, there was no admission that this was a huge public health threat to the american people. there were attempts to obfuscate the deaths and other things. we're not even in the position to admit that there's an issue. >> yeah, i look at the numbers of americans, not necessarily just confirmed cases or hospitalizations, but deaths. hundreds, hundreds of americans are dying every single day. and that's been going on and on, with no end in sight right now. dr. murthy, the white house press secretary called the u.s. response to this pandemic historic, saying the united states is beating the rest of the world on key metrics, including testing.
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give us your reaction when you hear a boast, a claim like that. >> well, wolf, i would respectfully disagree with that assessment. i think that our response strategy, as a country, has been, frankly, embarrassing. we have the capacity, the knowledge, the resources to mount this kind of response that a pandemic like this merits. and instead, we're behaving like a failed state. we're not communicating truthfully with the public, we're not executing in a manner that we can and the american people deserve. we said months and months ago that we would build and provide adequate testing in this country, that we would provide the contact tracers needed to contain infections. and we didn't do that. and we're now, unlike many other countries, that were able to get levels of virus down, we're suffering through another resurgence. and because of that we are, we are not able to open schools. because we execute properly, we are not able to open up our
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economy. one of the hallmarks of pandemic leadership is that you have to step up and fill the gaps. you have to take responsibilities for actions and you've also got to make sure that you are getting resources to people on the front lines. it's not too late to turn this around, but without better leadership, we are in for a long, long struggle with the coronavirus. >> and many, many thousands more americans will be dead as a result of what's going on right now. dr. murthy, thank you. dr. hotez, thanks to you as well. just ahead, much more on the president's motives on trying to undermine dr. fauci, even as the white house tries to act like it isn't happen. and new numbers just in on the pandemic's dangerous surge in texas. we'll go there live and talk to a houston mayor about his call for a two-week shutdown. we'll be right back. sure. okay... okay! safe drivers save 40%!!! guys! guys! check it out. safe drivers save 40%!!! safe drivers save 40%!
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cholesterol naturally, and it's odor-free, and pharmacist recommended. garlique we're following the breaking news on the coronavirus crisis, as the pandemic spreads with new vigor here in the united states, impacting more and more americans. let's bring in our chief medical correspondent, dr. sanjay gupta and our white house correspondent, john harwood. john, about 135,000 americans now confirmed dead, but in the last 72 hours, president trump has commuted the sentence of his longtime friend, the convicted felon, roger stone. he's also -- the white house trying to undermine dr. fauci. he retweeted a 1980s tv game show host spinning this wild conspiracy theory that the cdc, the center for disease control is lying to help democrats win the election in november. what does all of this say about the president's priorities right now? >> well, plainly, wolf, his
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priority is not getting a grip on the coronavirus coronavirus and what we've seen from donald trump donald trump throughout his protest is his priorities are self-glorification, and that's why he's been trying to shield his friends, who have been protecting him and to assail his enemies. calling for prosecution and jail time for various people. on the coronavirus, the facts have made pretty clear right now, especially when you compare us, the united states with other countries that have succeeded in crushing the virus. facts make pretty clear his mismanagement and lack of leadership have lit the country on fire. therefore, the president is compelled to go to war against the facts, go to war against the people delivering the facts, that's the cdc and tony fauci and the irony of this, of course, is that what his priority has been in a public policy sense has been to
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reenergize the economy. but it was predictable and predicted that if you tried to reopen the economy prematurely, without getting a handle on the coronavirus, you were going to have a very short-lived burst and that's what we're seeing right now, is the recovery is slowing down because of what's happening all across the sun belt. >> you know, sanjay, the white house is clearly trying to undermine, to discredit dr. fauci, but do these attacks have any basis in truth at all? >> well, look, i think you can see at this point that nobody knew everything there was to know about a brand-new virus, a novel coronavirus from the very start. the world has learned together to some extent about this. i think what has been striking to me, wolf, having followed this now for several months. the briefings went away and then there was a sort of -- you know, sort of stance of out of sight, out of mind when it came to dr. fauci. they weren't necessarily mad at him, but didn't want to see him because it reminded them of the pandemic. now it's more of this discrediting. and sort of in a way that's not
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fair at all. there was these interviews where they go back, look at these interviews and they say, look, dr. fauci said this. but they edit the interview in a way that's not fair at all. let me give you an example, quickly, if you can. this is one of the interviews that's been put out there recently. >> you know, right now, at this moment, there is no need to change anything that you're doing on a day-by-day basis. >> all right, that's what they've put out. no need to change anything. make it sounds like dr. fauci was minimizing the problem. again, february 29th. but listen to the next sentence. >> right now, the risk is still low, but this could change. i've said that many times, even on this program. you've got to watch out, because although the risk is low now, you don't need to change anything you're doing. when you start to see community spread, this could change. and force you to become much more attentive to doing things that would protect you from spread. >> so if you listen there, wolf,
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he's basically saying, here's the thing we're looking out for. evidence of community spread. when it starts to spread human-to-human in the community, that's going to change things. that wasn't the case when he gave that interview, but he's giving you thichk to look out for. nobody knew everything about this virus from the very start, but this idea of saying he was wrong, he was maybe even intentionally wrong, i think that's very unfair, wolf. >> they totally distort, take out of context what he was saying, because if you give the entire statement, there's deep perspective there you know, john, the president said today that he has a very good relationship with dr. fauci, but behind the scenes, the white house has put out what's essentially opposition research on dr. fauci. how much of this feud is about the president's ego and his fear of being overshadowed by dr. fauci. and dr. fauci himself pointed out the other day in that interview in the "financial times," he hasn't even spoken with the president since june
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2nd. >> well, wolf, first of all, i think in all of these situations, and fauci is the latest one, the word "feud,," doesn't really apply. anthony fauci is not in a feud with president trump. this is the president lashing out. and with the president, we've seen, you can never separate this president's actions from the kpugss, the demands of his psyche and his ego. he needs to portray himselves at all times as fabulously successful and admired. well, in anthony fauci, he's got someone who knows what he's talking about on coronavirus, the president doesn't. someone who's very well respected, much more so than the president of the united states, much more credible than the united states, and therefore the president has to lash out and try to bring him down. >> john harwood, thank you. sanjay gupta, thanks to you, as well. just ahead, houston officials, they fear the city is starting to look like new york city once did as the coronavirus cases and hospitalizations are spiking.
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right now the state is reporting more than 264,000 cases and more than 3,200 deaths. our national correspondent, ed lavendera is joining us from dallas. ed, texas saw a record number of new cases and hospitalizations over the weekend. what's the latest? >> well, those are just troubling numbers. and remember, the governor of texas, greg abbott, has said that this week will be worse than last week, which is not welcome news across virtually every corner of this state that has seen dramatic rises in the number of coronavirus cases, which is prompting the mayor of houston to call for a two-week economic shutdown to help get this virus back under control. we've reached out to the governor's office about this idea and this plan. we have not hard back, but it's important to remember, wolf, that texas was one of the first states to begin reopening the economy toward the end of april and early may and the governor has said that local officials do not have the authority to issue these shutdowns in and of themselves. so we'll see how this continues to play out, as these numbers
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dramatically increase. more medical -- military medical personnel is also -- are also on their way to texas to help out in various hot spots like houston, dallas, san antonio, the rio grande valley and el paso, as well. and remember, this is one of the medical stats that state officials here were looking at to reopen the economy was the positive infection rate of the cases and the tests that were coming out. the positive infection rate now is close to 17%. it was at 4.2%, wolf, just at the end of may. >> wow. all right, ed lavendera in dallas for us. let's go from dallas tohou hous, where the city just surpassed 30,000 coronavirus cases. we're joined by mayor sylvester turner. mayor, thank you so much for joining us. as you probably heard, california is rolling back its reopening even more, shutting down all indoor activities statewide. you're experiencing a similar crisis in houston right now.
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and as we just heard from ed, you're proposing a two-week shut down, but you don't have the authority, the power to do that. do you have any open that the texas governor, abbott, will follow california's lead or allow you to do so? >> well, wolf, you know, certainly, i made the request. you know, i appreciate the governor for requiring people to wear their masks. that will be helpful. but it's going to take time for that to really take meaningful effect and appreciate the fact that he's given local authorities the ability to place restrictions on any crowds greater than ten. but those measures alone, i don't think, will stop this forest fire that is taking place. today, we reported over 1,500 new cases today. and eight more deaths. and so those numbers keep growing. the numbers of hospitalizations keep going. we need to take this collective effort, maybe a two-week stay home work safe order, reset to cool things off and gradually move forward again.
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>> i understand you've said that governor abbott is certainly aware of your requests for this shutdown, but is it true that the two of you haven't even spoken yet? and if not, why not? >> no, wie haven't spoken recently, but i've been in communication with some of his people. and so those conversations have taken place. look, i think it is important for us all to be on the same page. i do appreciate the steps that he took two weeks ago, with the statewide requirement to wear masks. i think that was a significant step if the right direction. look, no one wants to slow down this economy or to put in place a stay-home order. but the reality is, when you look at what's happening on the ground, when we look at the fact that there are more cases showing up at the hospital, more people testing positively, just like ed lavendera just said, the positive rate is now about 17% in some cases, can be up to 20%. we have to slow down the
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progression of this virus, especially as we start looking at people, kid returning to school in august and in the fall. we have to get on top of the situation right now. >> given the awful situation that is emerging right now, even if you had the authority, mayor, to establish a two-week shutdown, would that be really enough to get the situation under control? >> well, you have to take one thing first steps one at a time. and what it is, i think we have to reset. i think it's important to reset. we have to slow down this virus. and what we know, when we take the energy and separate and take the energy away from this virus and it gives us an opportunity to try to get ahead of this virus, rather than chasing. right now, we're all chasing this virus. the virus is in control and the only way we can reverse course is that we have to separate and continue to put on our masks and engage in the social distancing. so that's the hope and we can
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gradually move forward again, but when we're looking at what's taking place now, you're reporting about the numbers in texas on a daily basis, the trajectory is going up, so we're moving in the wrong direction. so this is an opportunity where we have to kind of -- we have to reassess and recognize that we just need to hit the reset button. >> mayor turner, dplgood luck t you and everyone in houston. we appreciate your joining us. >> thanks, ed. be safe. just ahead, as health care workers across the united states face a dire shortage of protective equipment, is the trump administration doing enough to help? plus, the nfl's washington redskins' team makes a major announcement about the future of its name. i am in so much debt. sixty-two thousand seven hundred and ten dollars and thirty-one cents. sofi allowed me to refinance all of my loans to one low interest rate and an affordable monthly payment.
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as coronavirus cases surge across the country, doctors and nurses are telling cnn there's still a dire shortage of protective equipment, especially masks. critics say the trump administration isn't properly using a law that could help alleviate the short passage our senior investigative correspondent drew griffin is digging into all of this for us. so drew, what are you learning? >> wolf, this was a problem early on in the pandemic that apparently never got solved. now that the virus is coming back in force, so are the shortages in protective gear. this is a face mask nurse judith
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laguerre will use in a massachusetts hospital this week. dirty, reuse, this is one she has to disinfect on her dashboard. >> the sun will hit the mask and leave them there for a few days and we'll use them again. >> reporter: hardly sanitary, but health workers say there just aren't enough masks. out on cape cod says it's one re-cleaned mask a shift. >> they want you to reuse that mask multiple times and they send it for cleaning. >> reporter: and how often are you reusing the same mask? >> they do this process five times. >> across the country, nurses, doctors, some state health officials contacted by cnn say the lack of personal protective equipment or ppe is their most dangerous challenge with n95 masks the toughest to find. >> this is something we were talking about four months ago. >> reporter: the american medical association has been begging the federal government to direct the manufacturer, acquisition, and distribution of ppe. >> it's a national shame that we
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ran out of masks and other ppe to protect our health care workers. there was no skexcuse in march d even less of an excuse now. >> reporter: this month, a democratic house oversight committee concluded lack of leadership from the trump administration is forcing state and local governments, hospitals and others to compete for scarce supplies. the national nurse's united union just endorsed joe biden for what it calls trump's abandonment of public health and safety. >> we really need the president to fully invoke the defense production act, so we can mass produce the things that will keep us safe. and to this point, he has refused to do so. >> the department of health and human services says it has moved with deliberate speed to ensure we procured supplies needed by front line health care workers. hhs listed 19 companies that have received orders under the defense production act or dpa to
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acquire emergency supplies, including 600 million n95 masks, but experts say it's not enough and it started far too late. only half of the masks ordered will be delivered by the end of this year. >> this is going to be a really serious, serious and persistent challenge for the united states, you know, for several months, if not letter. >> reporter: kelly magson, a former pentagon official under the obama administration says the trump administration hasn't used the full power of the defense production act. >> the administration listened a little bit too much to corporate interests early on in the crisis. it was not used early enough nor aggressively enough to put us in a position to get the kind of equipment and ppe we need in time. >> reporter: some major hospitals tell cnn they are making their own deals to buy ever-scarcer supplies, some even stockpiling ppe. but smaller hospitals, nursing homes, and doctor's office are left out of the supply chain, jeopardizing even routine medical care, according to the
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ama. >> a few months ago, we're in this really dire emergent situation and our hope was that that situation would change and improve. and it's really unfortunate that here we are, in the middle of july, and things look more or less the same as they did in mid-march. >> reporter: early on in the pandemic, dr. seeka gupta helped start an organization to do what the federal government has not. trying to fill shortages of ppe where health care workers were going without. today, she says her group has 13,000 requests. they can fill just 10%. >> it shouldn't be seen in the united states. we had the opportunity to do a better job of preparing ourselves and preparing the people that were trusting to care for covid patients and we didn't do that. we really fell short, as a country. >> wolf, i wish i had better news, but it looks like this is going to get worse before it gets better. a medical supply chain expert says, expect fiercely competitive battles for this protective equipment in the
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coming weeks and months, especially as school systems enter the market for some of this protective gear. wolf? >> hard to believe here in the united states of america, after all of these months, there are these shortages. drew griffin, excellent reporting. thank you very much. we'll have much more ahead on the growing coronavirus crisis. also, after years of controversy, the nfl's washington franchise will soon have a new team name. that's coming up. sports announcing legend bob costas, there he is, see him? he's standing by live. we'll discuss. veterans, if you could lower your
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after mounting pressure and years of controversy the nfl's washington redskins announced today they are dropping the team name and logo which so many people considered offensive to native americans. for more let's bring in hall of fame broadcaster bob costas now a cnn contributor. how significant is it that after all of these years of pressure the redskins finally deciding to drop the name? >> yeah, i think it is significant. i wish they had done it of their own accord instead of under all of this pressure from fedex and nike, pepsi, and other entities. but i think they'll wind up in a very good place, wolf. ron rivera who had been the long time coach of the carolina panthers is the new head coach of the washington franchise and apparently even before fedex and nike and the others weighed in
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he had made it clear to owner daniel snyder that he thought rebranding the team would be a good idea, and the best guess now, wolf, is that the name they intend to use going forward is -- the reason we included that is that while they haven't announced the name yet ron rivera was quoted as saying we want to be sure it is something respectful to both native american and the military. red tails as you know was the nickname of one of the units of the tuskegee airmen, the fabled world war ii fighter pilots, african-americans during a time when the military was still segregated and they painted the tails of their fighter planes red. they were nick named the red tails. this accomplishes a number of things. it rebrands the team. they can keep their essential color scheme. it ties in with social justice at an appropriate time.
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i just wish they had come to this conclusion earlier. >> how long do you think it will be before we see the new name on the logo, the jerseys and all that. >> if they play in 2020 and that is a big if because of the implications of the pandemic but if they play in 2020 i think we'll see it then. >> how due think it is going to be received by the players? so many have been advocating for racial justice in our country. do they believe there is still more work to be done? >> of course they believe there is more work to be done overall, but i think among the players there will be significant approval of this change among long time washington fans. i think there would be more acceptance than there was a few years ago but there will still be many, many hold outs whose only view of this, they can't see any of the other implications, they only see, this is my team. i root for my team.
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this has always been the name. i am not a racist. don't insult me by saying so. i root for this team and leave me alone and leave the name alone. it is going to take a while before those people are convinced. >> does this put added pressure, bob, on other teams, the cleveland indians, the atlanta braves, the chicago blackhawks, to start considering changing their names as well? >> we talked about this last night, wolf. i think that each of these has to be taken on a case by case basis. in some cases in college sports for example the florida state seminoles have an arrangement with the seminole tribe. the ute tribe in utah same thing. they approved of the symbols and the use of the name. i think we have to go case by case and as i said to you previously the redskins were always in a different category. dictionary defined insult and slur. they were separate and apart from everything else and that name should have been gone a
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long time ago. >> it is gone right now and we'll see what the new name is. good reporting as usual, bob costas. always appreciate you joining us here in "the situation room." we'll have more news, more coronavirus news just ahead. at university of phoenix, we know you're always there for them. that's why our advisors are always here for you. learn more at
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finally our nightly tribute to some of the victims of the coronavirus pandemic. john briar of california was 64 years old. he lived with multiple sclerosis for 25 years, finding joy in teaching his son about sports, inspiring him to be a phy-ed teacher. he also leaves behind a daughter and three beloved grandchildren.
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carolan christine gann was 75 and a career nurse. her daughter is grateful to another nurse who was at carolann's side in the final hours to use her own cell phone to be sure they could face time their final good-byes because relatives weren't allowed to visit. may they rest in peace and may their memories be a blessing. erin burnett outfront starts right now. >> the u.s. headed for another record day of cases with more states shutting back down. america going in the wrong direction as president trump is at odds with dr. anthony fauci. a new study suggests immunity from coronavirus antibodies may be incredibly brief. does this mean people who have the virus can get it again? plus the president says he is getting rave reviews for commuting roger stone's sentence, is it back firing with his own party? good evening. i'm erin burnett.


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