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tv   ABC World News Tonight With David Muir  ABC  October 26, 2020 5:30pm-6:00pm PDT

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tonight, the race to the finish. president trump and joe biden both in pennsylvania, eight days left. the president tonight again saying we are rounding the corner on the virus, as the nation marks an all-time record for new cases this weekend since this pandemic began. and the new outbreak involving several people close to vice president mike pence, including his body man and chief of staff. mike pence still out campaigning and not quarantining. as cdc guidelines suggest. the white house saying pence on the campaign trail is an essential worker. joe biden, meanwhile, on the attack tonight, after what the president's chief of staff said about the virus. the record-setting turnout across much of this country. more than 62 million early votes cast so far. people waiting in line for hours, smashing records in battleground states including florida. and early ballots in texas now,
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82% of the entire vote there four years ago. and with so many mail-in votes, voting by absentee, how much will we know on election night? with so many states not even opening those ballots until election day. jon karl and mary bruce standing by live tonight. the coronavirus here in the u.s. pushing hospitals to the breaking point. from utah to texas. and in utah tonight, some authorities now saying the patient load is so great they will have to prioritize patients in some cases younger patients first. to el paso, where they're air lifting some patients to other hospitals. and the 18-year-old college freshman dying from covid. the senate confirmation vote tonight on supreme court justice nominee amy coney barrett. senate majority leader mitch mcconnell telling republicans democrats won't be able to do much about this for a long time to come. we are monitoring evacuations at this hour. california's silverado fire erupting across thousands of acres. at least two firefighters critically injured. 60,000 people forced from their
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homes. the biggest wind emergency of the year, they're now saying tonight. and the other threat this evening, yet another hurricane headed toward the u.s. tonight, where there are already states of emergency. good evening and it's great to have you with us here as we start another week together. eight days to go until election day, of course, a week from tomorrow. more than 62 million already voting. tonight, the president and joe biden in pennsylvania. the president in his closing argument saying, we have turned the corner on the virus. but the reality he's now dealing with, the vice president mike pence, several members of his team, have tested positive. his chief of staff, his body man, often right by pence's side. the vice president not quarantining, out campaigning, instead. the white house saying pence on the trail is an essential worker.
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president trump with three rallies in pennsylvania. joe biden there, too, going on the attack after something the president's chief of staff said about coronavirus here in the u.s. at least five close associates of the vice president testing positive. the vice president campaigning in minnesota. and after the president's chief of staff said of the virus here in the u.s., "we're not going to control the pandemic," joe biden tonight with plenty to say about that. here's abc's chief white house correspondent jonathan karl leading us off. >> reporter: with one week to go, trump and biden are both in pennsylvania today. a surprise victory here helped put trump in the white house. now both candidates believe pennsylvania could be decisive this time, too. >> people have no idea what's going to happen in pennsylvania, that i can tell you. >> reporter: just today at three packed rallies, the president spoke for some four hours. but he barely mentioned the covid-19 pandemic and made no mention whatsoever of the new outbreak at the white house.
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five members of vice president pence's team are currently infected, including the vice president's personal assistant and his chief of staff, who is almost always by his side. this, a month after the first big outbreak at the white house infected more than two dozen people, including the president and the first lady. pence is the head of the white house coronavirus task force. >> why are you still traveling and holding campaign events when people close to you have covid? >> reporter: today, he was in minnesota. >> thank you so much for coming out on this blustery day. >> reporter: while cdc guidelines say anybody in close contact with an infected person should quarantine for two weeks, the white house says pence is still out campaigning because he's an essential worker. it comes as 42 states are experiencing a rise in infections. but the president is mocking the widespread concern. >> and we're rounding the turn. you know, all they want to talk about is covid. by the way, on november 4th, you won't be hearing so much about it. covid, covid, covid, covid.
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>> reporter: but some researchers warn that unless more people wear masks and socially distance, the death toll by the end of february could top a half a million. the president routinely insists the virus has already been beaten, but sunday, his chief of staff said it cannot be controlled. >> we're not going to control the pandemic. we are going to control the fact that we get vaccines, therapeutics and other mitigation areas -- >> why aren't we going to get control of the pandemic? >> because it is a contagious virus. >> reporter: at an impromptu campaign stop today in chester, pennsylvania, biden responded. >> the fact of the matter is this president's chief of staff just acknowledged they're giving up. they're not even pretending. they're not going to do anything about this. >> reporter: he vowed a biden administration will get control of the virus. >> and look folks, i promise you this. i'm never going to give up. i don't know what we'll inherit
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on january 21st, but at the rate he's going, it's not going to be good. but we're going to be able to make it. >> reporter: biden's approach to the final days is dramatically different and more cautious than trump's. today, he had just one short event. >> the big difference between us and the reason why it looks like we're not traveling, we're not putting on super spreaders. we are doing what we're doing here. everybody's wearing a mask and trying as best we can to be socially distanced. >> joe biden and the president both in pennsylvania today. let's get right to jon karl, live at the white house tonight. and jon, joe biden while in pennsylvania with a major effort to reach black voters there and across the country. of course, president trump hopeful on that front, as well. and today, comments from the president's son-in-law, jared kushner, making headlines about the president's economic policies and african-americans, saying of the president, he can't want them to be more successful than they want to be successful. here's some of that exchange. >> one thing we've seen in a lot of the black community, which is
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mostly democrat, is that president trump's policies are the policies that can help people break out of the problems that they're complaining about, but he can't want them to be successful more than they want to be successful. >> and jon, you know, as well as i do, those comments triggered an immediate backlash. how's the trump campaign responding tonight? >> reporter: they sure did, david. well, the trump campaign is certainly not backing away from kushner's comments or apologizing for them. in fact, the trump campaign tweeted video of those comments out to its 3.2 million twitter followers earlier today. david? >> jon karl leading us off on a monday night. jon, thank you. and now to that record early voting across this country. as i mentioned at the top tonight, more than 62 million ballots cast so far. americans waiting in line for hours. breaking records in battleground states including florida. and early ballots in texas now adding up to 82% of the entire vote in texas just four years ago. and with so many mail-in votes and voting by absentee, how much will we know on election night
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with so many states not even opening those ballots until election day? it could be a long night and beyond. and here's abc's mary bruce tonight. >> reporter: tonight, record-breaking voter enthusiasm on full display. americans waiting in lines for hours, even braving pouring rain, to make their voices heard. eight days to go and already across the country, more than 62 million ballots have been cast. 45% of total votes counted in 2016. voters are smashing records in critical battlegrounds. >> whoever you vote for, you should just go vote. >> reporter: in florida, more than 6 million have already cast their ballots, roughly 43% of all registered voters. up in the polls, joe biden is looking to expand the map, eyeing states trump won in 2016. even with new regulations making it harder to vote early, more than 7 million texans have already voted. that's more than 82% of the total votes cast in 2016. biden is also hoping to flip georgia, where he'll be campaigning tomorrow.
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but the must-win state is pennsylvania. >> hey, buddy, how are you? >> reporter: biden today stopping by his field office in chester, pennsylvania, thanking volunteers working to get out the vote. already nearly 2 million pennsylvanians have voted by mail, the overwhelming majority, registered democrats. trump says his supporters there will come out in droves on election day. >> who has voted? raise your hand. who is going to vote? >> reporter: the surge in mail-in voting could delay the announcement of results. a majority of states don't start counting mail-in ballots until election day. pennsylvania is one of a handful of those that doesn't even start opening these ballots until november 3rd. >> the largest counties are actually planning on counting 24/7 until they get the counting done, so that we can ensure that not only is every ballot counted accurately, but counted accurately as quickly as humanly possible. >> all right, mary bruce with us
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live from washington tonight. and mary, with this record-breaking number of early votes, of course, the big question we've all been talking about here at abc with our political team for weeks now, the realization this could be a very long election night, it could really last well beyond election night. so, where could we know in the evening on tuesday, where could we still be waiting hours, i hate to say it, but days into it? >> reporter: well, david, some critical states like florida and north carolina have already been processing ballots for weeks now. so, we could know a fair amount early on in the night. but experts we've talked with are especially concerned about those three critical battleground states that handed trump the presidency, that we may not know those results on election night. in michigan, they don't even start counting ballots until november 3rd. in pennsylvania and wisconsin, they don't even start opening them until then. so, while they will be working around the clock, david, the bottom line is that given this massive turnout and millions of ballots that have to be tallied, we could be waiting for results for days. david? >> mary, you'll be right here with us. but as mary just said, election
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night, florida, north carolina, we could know, perhaps, in the evening. michigan, pennsylvania, wisconsin, they start counting the day of, so, stick with us here. thanks, mary. abc news will carry every step of the campaign, live coverage on election night. join george, me, the entire powerhouse political team, 7:00 p.m. eastern, november 3rd. you don't need me to tell you, it's a week from tomorrow. i know many of you want it over already. but in the meantime, as we've been reporting, the coronavirus in this country, front and center in this election. the virus tonight pushing hospitals in some places in this country to the brink. the average of new cases now approaching 70,000 a day in the u.s., that's the highest yet. and this graph tonight showing cases over time. we're now at a third peak, moving even higher. friday and saturday set a record 48 hours. more than 165,000 new cases in those two days alone. this evening, more than 225,000 lives have been lost. el paso, texas, with a record-breaking number of cases. extra beds now in tents outside university medical center.
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utah fearing the patient load could lead to prioritizing who gets care first. police in albuquerque cracking down on masked gatherings, as cases rise again in new mexico. and there is news tonight on the 18-year-old in ohio, a college freshman, among the latest to die because of the virus. here's abc's marcus moore tonight. >> reporter: tonight, fears of colder weather and more time indoors fueling the spread of the virus, now a reality. the country marking the highest number of new cases in a 48-hour period since the pandemic began. hospitals in el paso, texas, are at capacity. medical teams scrambling to airlift critically ill patients to nearby cities. and these surge tents put up to house the staggering influx of covid patients. how serious is this? >> so, we realize that this is the unexpected. this is something that we've not had to do before. >> reporter: the city urging residents to stay home for two weeks to stop the spread. >> by next wednesday, we're going to need another 200-plus hospital rooms. >> reporter: utah hospitals warning they could soon be
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forced to ration icu beds and prioritize younger patients. >> i did not think we were ever going to get to a point where we were going to deny people care in the icu based on age or how sick they are. if that's starting to happen already and we have many, many weeks of this surge to go, i am starting to get concerned that we may get into trouble. >> reporter: hospitalizations hitting records in 16 states last week. deaths now rising in 27. no corner of the country spared. ohio saw a record number of cases over the weekend, but ohio state football fans spotted crowding together without masks. >> what the [ bleep ]? >> reporter: some defiant. >> i don't wear masks. >> reporter: today, officials begging the public to keep wearing masks, even when they're uncomfortable. >> you know what else is uncomfortable? being intubated. seeing a loved one on a ventilator. >> reporter: dr. anthony fauci saying maybe a national mandate is needed. >> if people are not wearing masks, then maybe we should be mandating it. >> reporter: and tonight in
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illinois, they are mourning the loss of college freshman michael lang, who was taking classes remotely. the 18-year-old passing away after complications from the virus. david, there's news in the search for a vaccine. astrazeneca is joining the list of other companies with vaccines, saying theirs may be as effective in elderly people as it is young adults. of course, we'll have to wait and see how this pans out in the ongoing phase three trial, which that company is running right now. david? >> marcus moore in texas tonight for us. marcus, thank you. now, to the newest emergency unfolding in california at this hour, fueled by the most severe santa ana winds this year. the silverado wildfire erupting early this morning with wind gusts up to 70 miles an hour. tens of thousands have already been forced from their homes today alone. at least two firefighters tonight critically injured. and late today, word of a second fire breaking out in that same area. abc's kaylee hartung from the region tonight. >> reporter: tonight, powerful winds sparking multiple fires in orange county, california. the blue ridge fire burning this home. the silverado fire exploding to
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4,000 acres after breaking out just before 7:00 a.m. >> all these homes now threatened by this fire. it is moving very close to these structures. >> reporter: some 60,000 forced to flee. these are tropical storm-force winds, gusts at 70 miles per hour, are making these conditions extremely dangerous. >> please leave your house immediately. >> reporter: families packing what they can. valuables and pets. >> our priority right now is getting people evacuated and out of the path of the fire. >> reporter: two firefighters critically burned on the front lines. >> please keep these firefighters in your thoughts and prayers and their families. >> reporter: flames lapping at the sides of freeways. after an initial aerial attack, firefighting aircraft grounded due to those powerful winds. away from the blaze, those winds knocking over tractor trailers. the national weather service calling this the most extreme wind event of the year. and california's already had a record-breaking fire season.
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david, i'm standing on the 133 freeway right in the middle of irvine, california. these dangerous winds are making these flames unstoppable. this roadway is the only thing protecting thousands of homes from these flames. red flag warnings continue into tomorrow. david? >> just extraordinary scene playing out. kaylee hartung reporting in. thank you. and we are following the other major headline from washington tonight. the senate has now voted judge amy coney barrett. confirmed in record time. senate majority leader mitch mcconnell had already told republicans that democrats won't be able to do much about this for a long time to come. abc's terry moran covers the supreme court for us. he has late-breaking developments tonight. >> reporter: david, justice amy coney barrett tonight with the swearing in at the white house and another swearing in tomorrow at the supreme court. it was a bitterly divided senate that confirmed her. 52-48. only one republic crossing over to the democrats. and it's a record, no supreme
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court justice has ever been confirmed this close to an election. she becomes the fourth woman to sit on the supreme court. the third trump justice. it's a major accomplishment for the president, no doubt about it. and she'll get to work right away, within one week, one week from election day, she will hear a challenge to the affordable care act, which could end coverage for pre-existing conditions for 130 million americans. and likely election law challenges that could decide who wins the election. david? >> terry moran covering the court for us tonight. terry, thank you. and this evening, with the prospects of covid stimulus aid dimming, cases soaring across the country, investors outlook on the economy took a hit. the dow closed down 650 points, after being down more than 950 points at one point. closing down more than 2%. it was the worst day for stocks since september 3rd. when we come back here on a monday night, the state of emergency already in place. yet another hurricane heading toward the u.s. tonight. ginger zee standing by to time it out for us.
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we're now tracking yet another new hurricane targeting the gulf coast tonight. watches already posted. a state of emergency now in louisiana. so, let's get right to chief meteorologist ginger zee with the latest timing and track for us. hey, ginger. >> reporter: david, in this wild season, this could end up being louisiana's fifth named landfalling storm, the 11th in the united states. its name is zeta. it's in the western caribbean, about to pass the yucatan peninsula with up to a foot of rain and some serious winds. then it will die a little bit before it goes back to probably a category 1 through the gulf. it is wednesday night through early thursday, hurricane watch from new orleans to pascagoula. tropical storm watch, mobile and pensacola. david, two to six feet of surge, two to six-plus inches of rain. >> the gulf just cannot get a break. ginger, our thanks to you again tonight. when we come back here this evening, there is news coming in tonight about arnold schwarzenegger recovering from heart surgery. in tonight about arnold schwarzenegger recovering from schwarzenegger recovering from heart surgery. on a formula only founin pr
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there's surprising power in this patch salonpas dependable, powerful relief. hisamitsu. arnold schwarzenegger recovering from heart surgery tonight. the 73-year-old actor and former governor had a new aortic valve implanted in his heart at the cleveland clinic. he posted pictures from his hospital bed and says he's already walking around the city. he says he feels fantastic. and that is great news tonight. when we come back here this evening, something we learned about the moon. about the moon. when disaster strikes to one, we all get together and support each other. that's the nature of humanity. ♪ it has encouraged other people to take the time for each other. ♪ ♪
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molecules, suggesting it's more widespread on the moon than previously thought. and not just hidden in the permanent shadows as thought before. they've been finding signs of water on the moon since 2008. some pockets of water as small as a penny. thank you for watching here on a monday night. i'm david muir. from all of us here, good night. who's supporting prop 15? joe biden. biden says, "every kid deserves a quality education and every family deserves to live in a safe, healthy community. that's why i support prop. 15." vote yes. schools and communities first is responsible for the contents of this ad.
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traffic and air pollution will be even worse after the pandemic. that's why we support measure rr to keep caltrain running. which is at risk of shutdown because of the crisis. to keep millions of cars off our roads, to reduce air pollution and fight climate change. and measure rr helps essential workers like me get to work and keep our communities healthy. relieve traffic. reduce pollution. rescue caltrain. [all] yes on measure rr. who'sgovernor gavin newsom. the governor says prop 15 is, "fair, phased-in, and long overdue reform", that "will exempt small businesses and residential property owners." join governor newsom. vote yes on 15. we're almost one week away
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from election day. million office people are voting early. who is voting and what does it mean? we're breaking it down. and i'm meteorologist drew tuma. red flag warnings continue overnight. we'll have the very latest details on our fire danger in the accuweather forecast. this is a scenario multiple residents across the bay area are waking up to. tree trimmers tell us they're receiving an unprecedented number of emergency calls. abc 7 news at 6:00 starts right now. building a better bay area for a safe and secure future. this is abc 7 news. hundred ossoff acres burned. smoke filling the sky. this is exactly what we're hoping to avoid as high winds threaten to turn any spark into a raging inferno. good evening and thank you for joining us. i'm ama daetz. >> and i'm dan ashley. that fire we just showed you burned more than 350 acres this afternoon in fairfield near travis air force

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