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tv   CNN Tonight with Don Lemon  CNN  September 24, 2020 12:00am-1:00am PDT

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i will send out an army to find you in the middle of the darkest night it's true, i will rescue you oh, i will rescue you olay's new serum is so powerful, won. it renews skin better than $300, $500, even $600 serums. pretty amazing. olay. face anything. this is "cnn tonight." i'm don lemon. it is 11:00 p.m. here on the
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east coast. 41 days until election day. we're following multiple breaking news stories for you that could impact how americans cast their votes in the 2020 election. protests breaking out tonight in louisville, kentucky, and other cities around the nation after a grand jury decides not to charge any louisville police officer directly in the shooting death of breonna taylor in her own home back in march. one fired officer was indicted only on three counts of first-degree wanton endangerment. louisville police confirm two officers have been shot tonight during protests. one is alert and stable. one is in surgery. their injuries reportedly not life-threatening. the president tweeting, "praying for the two police officers that were shot tonight in louisville, kentucky. the federal government stands behind you and is ready to help. spoke to governor andy beshear and we are prepared to work together immediately upon request." that as the president tonight is
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refusing to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses to joe biden in the election. >> will you commit to making sure that there is a peaceful transferral of power after the election? >> well, we're going to have to see what happens. you know that i've been complaining very strongly about the ballots and the ballots are a disaster. get rid of the ballots and you'll have a very -- we'll have a great peaceful. there won't be a transfer, frankly, there will be a continuation. >> senator mitt romney calling the president's refusal to commit to a peaceful transfer of power unthinkable and unacceptable. tonight as more than 201,000 people in this country have died from covid-19, the head of the cdc warning that more than 90% of americans remain susceptible to the virus. that and much, much more in the hour ahead. we certainly have a lot to cover this evening, so stay with us. we're going to get to our breaking news first, where the protests in cities all across this country are happening now, demanding justice for breonna taylor. straight to cnn's jason carroll who is joining us from louisville where a curfew is in
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effect. jason, good evening. once again, the two officers shot in louisville. the police chief holding a press conference. take it away. what do you know? >> reporter: right. holding that press conference a short while ago. both of those officers are at this point non-life-threatening injuries. a suspect is in custody. very quickly want to sort of recap how we got to the moment when those officers were shot. we were there when it happened, don, as you know. it began at jefferson square park. it was about 8:00. and as more -- as the evening wore on, as we got closer to the curfew, it became more and more clear that some in the crowd were becoming more and more agitated. we saw some starting to light fires, then a group of about a couple of hundred broke off from that particular park, jefferson square park, and then made their way to an overpass at broadway and first.
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that is at the moment where we heard what appeared to be fireworks, then we heard gunfire. it was all captured on our cameras. i want your audience, your viewers to look at what we saw as it happened. >> [ bleep ]. [ bleep ]. >> stay with me! >> that's tear gas. that's tear gas. >> to the right. to the right. >> i got it. >> hold up. hold up. >> reporter: so you can see at one point, don, we made to a safe location. at that point we were able to continue on. it was also captured from another camera from a different perspective. want you to take a look at that
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as well. >> shots fired. >> you good? >> good. >> you all good? >> we're good. >> officer down right there. >> officer down? >> yes. >> officer down. take cover. >> take cover! >> reporter: so, again, don, two officers shot. one alert, in stable condition. the other is in surgery. also in stable condition. again a suspect is in custody. and, again, want to bring it back to breonna taylor and her family because as you know, i've spoken to her mother on more than one occasion, and she made it very clear while she wanted protests to continue, she wanted them to be nonviolent. certainly not the way it ended
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this evening. don? >> certainly not. jason carroll on the scene for us. jason, thank you very much. we'll get back, if need be. i want to go to cnn's alex marquardt in washington where protesters have taken to the streets. alex, take it away. >> reporter: yeah, don, you know, protesters took to the streets in huge numbers in the wake of george floyd's death. and they are back out in the streets of washington tonight. this is the crowd that is out here at 11:00 p.m. eastern time. this group gathered around four hours ago. they've been on the march now for the past two, leaving from the white house and really doing a big loop around washington, d.c. they have not lost any of their energy, none of their passion. you can hear those chants "black lives matter," "no justice, no peace" and of course the name of breonna taylor. it has been an almost entirely peaceful protest throughout the evening. we're going to stick with this group. there was a flare up, don, last time that we spoke with the police who had put on some riot gear. that was an altercation that
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lasted around ten minutes, but other than that, it has been entirely peaceful. so now we are -- we've just come on to 16th street. for anybody who knows washington, d.c., that goes straight into the white house. this is where that march started about two hours ago, as i mentioned. the street that we are walking on right now is part of what the mayor of d.c. officially named black lives matter plaza back in june in the wake of those george floyd protests. so this -- this protest literally coming full circle. as you can see, energy is not dying down. we'll see where it goes. but this -- many of these people who were out in those earlier protests earlier this summer are now back out this -- these marches, this protest sparked by the news today that none of those police officers will be charged with anything related to the -- to the killing of breonna taylor. don? >> alex marquardt, we'll get back to you as well, if need be.
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i want to get to athena jones now, who are with the protesters in new york city. athena, where are you? what are you seeing? >> reporter: hi, don. we are now crossing the williamsburg bridge heading back into brooklyn. you'll remember we began the night at barclays center in brooklyn, crossed across the manhattan bridge, through lower manhattan and now we're heading back into brooklyn. this has been, again, a peaceful crowd, high energy. all of the usual protests, "say her name, breonna taylor." but increasing in in the last half hour or so we're standing near a group that is holding a banner saying "trump/pence out." there has been a lot of talk, hey, look, you got to vote, but we can't rely on that. we got to stay out in the streets because it's important to make people understand, the whole society, the whole country understand what we want to see, which is accountability for black lives lost at the hands of police. respect for black lives.
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so that is the message that we're seeing here today. entirely peaceful from what we've observed. but we're talking about hundreds and hundreds if not more than 1,000 or so people out in the streets. it's a festive atmosphere. there is -- there has been drum. there is a trumpet player. a guy on roller skates with a guitar. so it's a festive atmosphere, but they are still angry, i should say, if you can sort of mix those two things. >> yeah. >> reporter: very, very angry about the results of this case. >> athena jones, stand by. we're going to get back to you, if warranted, as well. athena jones on the street. our jason carroll, shimon prokupecz and also alex marquardt covering all of this for you. we have cameras stationed throughout the country. we'll get to any unrest or any situation, if need be. i want to bring in now jessica green. she's a city council woman in louisville, kentucky. thank you, councilwoman, for joining us. a lot of anger, disbelief across the country tonight. what do you think about the
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protests we're seeing? >> i think that people are in pain and the only way that they know how to be able to articulate or to demonstrate that pain is to take to the streets. and so we're finding that it's occurring not just in louisville, but it's becoming nationwide because breonna taylor has become a rallying cry for justice. and so the people are hurt. we're disappointed. we're devastated. we believe that the system has let us down. but, of course, when the system is not designed to protect people, what other recourse do you have and what can you really expect? >> well, they have other recourses, i'm sure you'll agree, than the shooting of two police officers. you have two police officers who are in the hospital tonight, councilwoman. one is in surgery. both alert.lert, we're told by police chief, and -threaning in but still that is definitely not the way to go. that only takes away from --
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from breonna taylor's -- what this stands for, her family and whatever -- again, what this movement stands for. >> i would agree with that, don, as we know, as we've seen reports, the vast majority of what is occurring across the nation is nonviolent and peaceable. and just like we cannot cast all officers in the same light as the bad actors, i refuse to allow anybody to say that because sometimes bad things happen by certain people who are mixed up with protesters that that's something that all of the protests should carry the burden for. so that is absolutely something that i'm not willing to accept at all. >> and what do you say to those who are what you call bad actors? >> i would say that obviously the idea that shooting anyone, shooting an officer is disgusting. i hope those individuals are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. my understanding is that that individual or those individuals are already in custody. and that's the way the justice should be swift, in the same way that it should have been swift
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in dealing with breonna taylor. but here we sit 184 days later, justice did not occur, even in a slow manner. and so because of that, people are justifiably livid. >> so let me ask you about this. why do you believe, councilwoman, that the grand jury didn't return with charges directly related to breonna's death? >> i believe it didn't happen because the a.g. didn't want it to happen. i've been a prosecutor before. i was one for almost ten years. i'm a criminal defense attorney now. and we've all heard the same that a ham sandwich can be indicted if we want the ham sandwich to be indicted. the grand juries don't hear about self-defense issues being raised. the defendant is required to take that up at trial. and so that requires -- and prosecutors when they present theories of self-defense, it's for a real reason, it's to sway
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the jury to the position that they want them to take. and so presumably attorney general cameron got exactly what he wanted here. >> that was my next question. you're not buying what the attorney general is saying. he says that the two officers were not charged in this because they had nothing to do directly with the -- with the shooting. >> if attorney general cameron had wanted those two officers to be charged, they would have been charged. and i'm -- i have been just thinking about that poem, "ain't i a woman?" the reality of the situation is we have white neighbors who had wanton endangerment charges levied because bullets came into their household. we have a black woman who died, who bled out, whose family was not told what occurred, who people have been told what is -- have been marching for months and not one charge.
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>> yeah. >> it is sickening and i am disgusted at the state of america and what it means to be a black woman today. >> i misspoke. i'm sorry. what i meant was the other officer who was charged was not -- was not charged directly with breonna taylor's death. the two officers who were not charged had a self-defense. the attorney general is saying that they did it in self-defense because kenneth walker, breonna taylor's boyfriend, fired and hit the officer first. >> well, again, not to throw any type of shade towards attorney general cameron, but if he had ever tried any kind of case or knew anything about criminal law in the state of kentucky, you don't get to raise a self-defense claim against someone who was not the actor, who did not levy the actual deadly force against you. what we know is that breonna taylor was unarmed. there has not been any allegation that she was harm. so the idea that they even allowed or brought up the idea of self-defense in this case, again, it shows that, "a," he doesn't either know the law or he doesn't give a crap about what the law actually is.
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those are the two options. >> councilwoman, i've got to get to the break. i'm sure you understand that. i'm not being disrespectful here. but don't you think that it matters, this warrant matters? the evidence as to how they got this warrant or why they got this warrant? because it may show that they should not have been there in the first place. doesn't that matter in this case? >> it absolutely -- it absolutely matters. and the fact that you have officers who can, first of all, judge shop and go to judges that they believe that will sign warrants or who are weak and that can be bullied is one issue. the other issue is that when you lie about what's in the warrant when you have stale information, all of that is relevant, but i can guarantee you attorney general cameron didn't present that part of it to the grand jury. he presented what he wanted to present and he got the exact result that he wanted to get. >> councilwoman green, thank you so much. thank you. i appreciate your time. thank you. be safe. >> thank you very much.
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bye-bye. >> much, much more to come on our breaking news. we are bringing in some brand-new video from the scene of that shooting of two officers today. and once we have a chance to look at it, we're going to play it for you. plus, the president's shocking refusal tonight to commit to a peaceful transition of power after election day, if he loses. e my dry skin healthier in one day? it's true jen. really?! this prebiotic oat formula moisturizes to help prevent dry skin. impressive! aveeno® healthy. it's our nature.
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enjoy the go with charmin. the president tonight refusing to commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the election. >> will you commit to making sure that there is a peaceful transferral of power after the election? >> well, we're going to have to see what happens. you know that i've been complaining very strongly about the ballots and the ballots are a disaster. get rid of the ballots and we'll have a very peaceful -- there won't be a transfer, frankly, there'll be a continuation. >> and that should worry all of you. let's discuss now. cnn's white house correspondent john harwood is here. cnn senior political analyst john avalon as well. and amanda carpenter, former communications director for ted cruz, senator ted cruz. good evening. that should frighten all of us, john harwood. president trump is refusing to say he's going to commit to a peaceful transfer of power after the election if he loses. disturbing, dangerous, but perhaps not shocking coming from
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him. >> not shocking, don, because he's said similar things many times before, including in 2016, but it is disturbing, it is dangerous, it is fundamentally un-american. the peaceful transfer of power is the hallmark of our democracy. even in 1974 when richard nixon became the first president to -- forced to resign from office. it's especially dangerous at a time now when we saw tonight what appeared to be armed militias -- civilian militias patrolling the streets of louisville. we've seen it in portland. we saw it in kenosha where two people lost their lives. so there's a not unreasonable expectation that the more the president talks like this, more people will lose their lives as a result of this. now, should he lose the election, as the polls indicate
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he will, will he actually try to execute some maneuver to stay in office and nullify the elections? i doubt it. most of the things that the president says are baloney. he's not a particularly psychologically healthy person, and i don't think there's any particular reason to think he's brave or bold enough to try to pull something like that off, but that doesn't make it any less dangerous. it's why it's important mitt romney, the senator from utah, condemned it tonight, and it will be important to minimizing the risk from this behavior that other republican leaders step up and say the same. >> i'm wondering how amanda carpenter feels about this because the president said if you get rid of the ballots, it will be peaceful. is there anything that this -- that this administration won't do to maintain power? what do you think of this, amanda? >> well, i mean, things are so tense right now. and john is right, donald trump does play around with these issues, but they have to be taken seriously, especially now. and this is how i would push it
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forward with republican leaders in particular. last july when donald trump was talking about delaying the election, that was a rare moment where senate majority leader mitch mcconnell, house minority leader kevin mccarthy, and even others like my former boss ted cruz, lindsey graham and marco rubio stepped forward to say, no, there will be an election on election day. they essentially said we're not messing around with this because it is so dangerous to democracy. even the co-founder of the federalist society who supported trump through impeachment said if he delayed the election it would be grounds for removal. that's how strongly republicans felt about this. and what donald trump said earlier today is arguably worse. he's not talking about delaying the election. he's talking about pretending like it didn't happen. getting rid of ballots. and so i would use those statements that the republicans have said about delaying the election to say what do you say about this? this is an even more hostile attack, potentially, on democracy. don't you also reject this?
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because i think they have to say yes, and we have to try to press that out of them now. >> john, you've sat by patiently nodding your head, so i want you to weigh in now, but i want to -- i want to play for you what the president said on fox news earlier this week. >> when you have the senate, when you have the votes -- >> yeah. >> -- you can sort of do what you want as long as you have it. >> so this is why the president wants his supreme court nominee in place before the election? he knows things are going to get ugly? >> it's one reason. look, this is a president who believes that might makes right. and this is not a drill. this is not a test. the president came out and said that -- i mean, talk about a civic softball. will you respect the peaceful transfer of power? the president denied it. he did not commit. this is our democracy we're talking about. and the peaceful transfer of democracy -- of power is a
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hallmark of it until this president. so we all need to be on watch, and there's a brilliant article in "the atlantic" that lays out the various scenarios and what the president and his team seem to be playing for. it's to try to create an aurora of delegitimizecy around the election as votes are counted, as people should know, not on election night but in the subsequent days to make sure it's counted. he's setting up a recipe of chaos. anyone who said they are a defender of the constitution or a patriot have got to condemn this because it is dangerous. >> we had the writer on earlier and he said he was frightened by his own reporting and the first time he actually went as far to talk about just how frightening this is. >> yeah. >> so, john, let me ask you, who all -- who all would have to be complicit in order for him to be able to hang on to power, even if he loses the popular vote? >> well, in the scenario -- >> john avalon, sorry. >> oh, i'm sorry. go ahead, john. upon a s congress that is hyperpartisan,
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has removed all guardrails, which is why to amanda's point it's going to be so important that they set up and clearly condemn this. he's going to hope that a supreme court stacked in his favor will help him if it gets to the supreme court. he's also going to be looking at state legislatures. the effort to delegitimize what's called a blue shift, the long counting, is what seems to be at the heart of this. but you've got a president who is telling us he will not respect the legitimacy of this election. and he's going to lean on all those folks and see whether there is any civic spine left in this country to defend our democracy. >> yeah. john harwood, i'm up against the break. who was that? was that john or amanda? go ahead, man and. quickly, please. >> when donald trump says i have to win these court battles, if you look at the court battles happening in the states, he's been on the losing end of many of them. in pennsylvania, wisconsin, georgia. democracy docket keeps a list of all the fights that are going on. he has not been successful in
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many of these court battles so far. if you're looking for some silver lines in this. >> john, it will have to be tomorrow that we get you in. thank you so much. you know we'll see you tomorrow night. we appreciate it. as protesters call for justice for breonna taylor, they're demanding to know how a young woman could be shot to death in her home in the middle of the night. and no one is being held accountable for her death. themr laundry, protection. lysol laundry sanitizer kills 99.9% of bacteria. detergent alone can't. lysol. what it takes to protect. ® let's make hand washing andren important one.ssons. safeguard is donating ten million dollars in hand soaps and sanitizers to families in need. safeguard your family. wash away germs.
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here's our breaking news. two louisville police officers were shot earlier tonight. the last report from the chief were that they were both stable. one in surgery at this -- at this hour. protests across this country tonight after a grand jury decided not to charge any louisville police officers in the shooting death of breonna taylor. one fired officer was indicted on three counts of first-degree wanton endangerment.
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cnn's shimon prokupecz is back with us from louisville, and also joining us is former nypd detective tom bernie and civil rights attorney areva martin. hello to both of you, and shimon, welcome back. so we have an understanding you have some new video of the shooting tonight. i'm going to play it for the audience and then you'll tell us what happened. here it is. >> shot. shot. gunshots! they're shooting guns. real guns. [ bleep ]. they're blasting at the police. >> shimon, walk us through what happened. what are we seeing? >> reporter: yeah, so, we were following along with these groups of protesters as they were marching, and there was fireworks and police were coming in to probably block them off and kind of they were trying to
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square them in. they were trying to surround them. and as the protesters were continuing to march, to walk, there was fireworks, and then we heard gunshots, and that's where you could see some of the people were running. and then within minutes, even more police moved in, heavily armed police moved in. they were pointing weapons at people, asking to see their hands. but in that video, what you're seeing is people just running from the scene, from the sound of that gunfire, running because no one really knew where it was coming from, and at that point people were just trying to take cover. as you said, the police tonight saying that two officers were shot. they're expected to be okay, but i can tell you just being out here, you can see the scene behind me. several arrests were made here. there is a certain level of
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tension that certainly increased after this incident. and a lot of police officers just on the street. you can hear them talking about what happened. and we'll see as the days go on how that escalates or de-escalates things, but certainly this is on the top of mind of many of the officers who are out here tonight, don. >> all right. shimon, thank you very much. i appreciate that. areva, to you now. let's talk more about this breonna taylor -- what happened today with the breonna taylor case. how is it that a young woman was just sleeping in her bed, then gets up when there's a knock at the door, shot by police, but no one is being held accountable for her death? >> it's really shocking, don, that we find ourselves in this situation, but we -- we've been here before. and as disappointing as this decision by the grand jury was, it wasn't totally surprising. what we have in this country is really a lack of transparency when it comes to the kinds of cases like breonna taylor. this attorney general for kentucky took over 180 days to provide any information to the public, and that has led to such a level of distrust by the people of kentucky and advocates all over this country, and it really leads us to but one conclusion, which is that there
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is no regard, there's a total disregard for black lives. >> mm-hmm. >> and there is no real explanation, i think, that would satisfy anyone as to why there wasn't any charges lodged against at least one of these officers when you look at what happened to breonna taylor. and then for that attorney general to stand there and admonish activists and admonish people, celebrities, influencers who have used their platform to raise the issues around police brutality in this country, i was really offended by the way he admonished activists like myself who have been trying to raise awareness about these issues and trying to, you know, really change the way policing happens in this country. so, you know, and his credibility is shot anyhow, given he appeared at the republican national convention. he, you know, tied himself to donald trump. he even used inflammatory language today in that press conference like "mob justice" and "law and order." the kind of pejorative terms we've heard donald trump use as he's tried to malign the peaceful protesters who have
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taken to the streets and who are demanding justice. so i think the answer to your question, don, is there really is no logical and justifiable explanation for what happened to ms. breonna taylor. >> we are looking now at protesters in washington, d.c. we have seen obviously the protests in louisville, new york city, las vegas, chicago, atlanta, and also in los angeles tonight. you see protesters out on the streets. major cities all across this country. tom, breonna taylor's boyfriend, kenneth walker, fired one shot. he says they were afraid and never heard police identify themselves. the three officers fired a total of 32 shots, 22 coming from the two officers who were not charged. the attorney general said that their use of force was justified. do you agree, tom? >> good evening, areva and don.
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i have to tell you, so my thoughts are with the officers that have been shot tonight as a result of this, you know, this mob mentality that's taking over in some of these cases where peaceful protests have turned into just outright rioting. endangering the lives of everybody, including the police. but my thoughts are also with the taylor family, and i really am truly sorry for what happened to them. that should never have happened. i think we have to come to realize that all of these high-profile police cases that we've seen in upon themselves are different from one another, right? what happened in minneapolis with george floyd is not what happened here in louisville. you know, george floyd was -- was murdered in broad daylight. right? this was a situation where officers are executing a warrant, and upon executing that warrant, they're fired upon. so, you know, police training
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across the board is that if you are faced with deadly or physical force, you face deadly physical force by using deadly physical force. which is what happened there. so that fuselage of bullets, unfortunately, she got caught in the crossfire of that and died in an untimely manner. this shouldn't have happened to a 26-year-old, you know, woman with a full life heard of her. so it's a really tough situation to be in. the police have to do their job. and in many cases, they need to do a better job. you know, don, you and i have talked about this many times. i'm always an advocate for increased and better police training. i'm also an advocate for police being a little more culturally sensitive to the strife of what's taking place in our country, especially when it -- when it's in regards to black lives mattering. >> mm-hmm. it's just -- it's just tough to -- i hear what you're saying. and i'm not saying that i disagree with -- >> can i say something, don? >> yeah, hold on one second,
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areva. but it's just tough when the warrant seems to be faulty, when they found no evidence and they -- it's like they should not have been there in the first place, tom. areva -- >> which brings up, that's a whole other level. >> right. >> so we have to ensure -- >> i guess, tom, we hear what you're saying and no one is in favor of the police being subjected to any kind of danger. >> right. >> or harm or being fired upon. but it's really difficult for individuals to understand breonna taylor didn't fire on anyone. she didn't have a gun. she didn't fire a weapon. and if the way police are trained today allows what happened to breonna taylor to happen to anyone, then it just is more justification -- >> areva. >> -- why we need to reimagine policing in this country. >> i've got to get to the break. thank you both. i appreciate it. it's a fascinating conversation and we'll continue it. thank you so much. joe biden tweeting on the protests tonight, saying even amidst the profound grief and anger, today's decision
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generated violence and is never and can never be the answer. those who engage it must be held accountable. jill and i are keeping the officers shot tonight in louisville in our prayers. we wish them both a swift and full recovery. that's the former vice president and presidential candidate joe biden tweeting tonight about the violence in kentucky and the two officers who were shot. there was more big news tonight on the coronavirus. president trump says that he may reject fda guidelines for a coronavirus vaccine. undermining public trust in the agency in the middle of a pandemic. dishwasher brands recommend cascade platinum... ...with the soaking, scrubbing and rinsing built right in. for sparkling-clean dishes, the first time. cascade platinum. and now your co-pilot.. still a father. but now a friend. still an electric car. just more electrifying. still a night out.
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201,957 americans have died of coronavirus. and tonight the president said he might overrule the fda when it comes to a vaccine for the virus. joining me now to discuss, andy slavitt. he is the former administrator for the centers for medicare and medicaid services. andy, thank you again for joining us this evening. the president hasn't been shy about openly disagreeing with his health experts, and today he said this when asked about the fda, considering changes to the emergency vaccine authorization. listen. >> well, i tell you what, we're looking at that. that has to be approved by the white house. we may or may not approve it. that sounds like a political
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move. >> you said last night on this show that this could happen. >> yeah. yeah, that's why you have me on, right, don? the -- you know, look, he technically can do that. he shouldn't do that. and what he should do is he should allow the fda scientists to prevail. and if they say that the -- that there is a vaccine that's ready for people, fantastic, and if they say it needs more time because we need more exposure then he should wait. and the reason he needs to do that is because it's very important that americans trust the vaccine when it comes out. it's very important that they don't feel that someone in the white house without scientific background made that decision. >> so, again, he can overrule the fda? >> he can. >> he can? >> he's allowed to do that. he's allowed to do that, but i think if he does that the outcry from scientists will probably be pretty loud. >> sources are telling cnn today that the white house task force member dr. deborah birx is questioning how long she can remain there. sources say she's, quote, distressed over the direction of the task force and calling the
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u.s. coronavirus response "nightmarish" and that she's concerned about the influence of dr. atlas on the president and that she worries that he is telling trump what he wants to hear. what's your reaction to that? >> well, look, i know there's mixed feelings about dr. birx, but the difference between dr. birx and with all respect to him dr. atlas is night and day. dr. birx, while she has to carefully manage president trump on camera, when she is out there in the states working with governors, she's pushing very aggressively the numbers, on reducing case count, on masks. you know, she understands infectious diseases. she has a long history of this. scott atlas has -- he's a political adviser. he's not a scientific adviser. he has no scientific background that's relevant to a virology and epidemiology that the country needs. he happens to have an opinion that the president likes. to extent that he is prevailing, and there are certainly talks
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he's prevailing over here, she's frustrated. it would be a loss for us, i think as a country, for birx not to be there, in my opinion. >> so you think she should hang on? >> look, it's very tough to advise her what to do. i think many people who work for the president face that dilemma all the time, do i stay and try to make country better off or at what point do i just feel like i can't do my job? >> it certainly is a dilemma that lots of folks -- and then usually when they leave, they speak out and, you know, this administration will bad-mouth them and say that they're disgruntled employees or that they were fired anyways. thank you, andy slavitt. i appreciate it. >> thank you, don. new polls show tight races in some battleground states. who is in the best position to get 270 electoral votes? cnn's john king at the magic wall next. rogena® rapid wrinkle repair®. we've got the retinol that gives you results in one week.
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41 days until election day. i'm going to have cnn's chief national correspondent, john king, join me on the show as often as we can work it out. to show us what -- what's happening on the race for 270 electoral votes. john, what do you have? >> don, joe biden campaigning today in battleground north carolina. and if you look at the map, our path to 270. you can certainly understand why. here's where we have the race, right now. 41 days out. 269 electoral votes, either
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solid. that's the dark blue. or leaning, that's the light blue. for biden. 169 solid or leaning for president trump. so if nothing else changed, all joe biden would have to do is win north carolina. victory. nothing else matters. that would be enough, right? but we know it's not that simple. number one. he is leading in north carolina but it is very close. it is a very, very close race there. number two. some new polling, today, tells us, remember, 2016. "washington post"/abc poll. florida and arizona, both, essentially ties but a slight trump edge in florida. a numeric edge, 49-48. but that's a tie in arizona. so joe biden has a lopsided lead right now. we know florida's dna in politics has been republican. we lean arizona blue right now. we say it leans biden. but if that poll is right and trump is coming back, certainly not inconceivable for a republican to win arizona in presidential politics. ohio is a tossup state but it has the most republican dna, probably, of any of the states in the midwest.
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north carolina, polls are close. let's say president trump won it again. notice what's happening on that side of the map. georgia. democrats say this is the year. african-american turnout. this is the year we're going to win georgia. maybe. but it has republican dna in presidential politics. look what just happened. all states, very conceivable to go to trump. or if it gets even closer, the congressional districts in maine and in nebraska. so there is no doubt, don, absolutely no doubt, right now, the race is tilted in biden's advantage. but when you look at this, that lead looks lopsided. yes. but not insurmountable. don. >> john king, thank you. that's all we need in 2020 is a tie. my goodness. thanks for watching, everyone. our coverage continues. chances are you have some questions right now here are a couple answers... lysol disinfectant spray and lysol disinfecting wipes
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