tv CNN Newsroom CNN May 22, 2020 12:00pm-1:01pm PDT
hello, i'm kate bolduan, thank you for joining us this hour. moments ago president trump is announcing that he's declaring churches and other houses of worship essential and demanding that governors across the country reopen them immediately. >> the governors need to do the right thing and allow these very important essential places of faith to open right now.
for this weekend. if they don't do it, i will override the governors. in america we need more prayer, not less. >> this is from the president who declared he didn't have the authority to force governors to do anything early on in the crisis when it came to actually shutting things down. and just to be clear, it does seem there may be more at play here than just getting people in the pews on sunday. this just hours after a large study showing that the drug hydroxychloroquine is linked to an increased risk of death and heart disease and heart problems, rather, in coronavirus patients. the president announced this week he's taking the drug himself. he's posed the question what do you have to lose? it seems we now may have the answer. kaitlan collins is live at the white house. elizabeth cohen is with us as well. what is the president ordering here when it comes to houses of
worship. >> reporter: it is not clear what he can order, kate. but the president is assorting his authority. what he said is that the cdc is going to put out guidance why me deem houses of worship as essential services. so they could reopen with guidance and grocery stores are essential and other things that are deemed as essential and places of worship may be under that too. but the president wants this to happen immediately, meaning today and this weekend and he said will override governors who do not honor that guidance. but, kate, that is just guidance for the states as they reopen. so some have reopened and mored to allow people to go back to church with distancing measures but other states have been remained closed. so it is not clear that the president has any authority to overrule those governors and he didn't cite any laws that he believes give him that power. so the question really is, the president just saying that as
this is my statement and i'm saying i do have the authority to do that. it doesn't appear that he does because he left the questions to dr. birx, to his press secretary. dr. birx gave a nuanced version, saying if people do feel the need given the number of covid cases, they should stay closed for another week and said the president was speaking hypothetically but doesn't think this will come to that. but some don't want churches reopened if they're still experiencing outbreaks. so we should be clear the president doesn't have the authority to overrule the governors when it comes to that, despite that assertion. what is new is they are putting out guidance deeming this essential because so far there were questions about the guidance and what it would be for placed of worship because they put out strict proposals, they've been talking about that from the cdc and the white house
pushed back deeming them much too details. >> and elizabeth, the president, i think it is notable, the guidance is coming out now but the president wants houses of worship to be opened up this weekend. so, one, there is a question could houses of worship be ready in time when you could see what even restaurants and other types of businesses have to get ready to reopen when guidelines have come out but we also know why this is so important to consider, is that houses of worship have been a source of outbreaks, of community spread. the cdc has talked about it. >> right. they certainly have. certainly there is more than one outbreak at churches in the united states. let's take a look at one that the cdc has written about. this was a church in arkansas. a husband and wife attended a service, later it was found out that they had covid. 35 people at that church service caught the virus and three died. 35 people attending services over the next several days and
three died. and 26 caught the virus from those people. so in other words a second generation, 26 caught the virus and one died. and this is in addition to in washington state there was a kyer practice where 45 people became ill and two died. that is in march before we knew to take the measures that we take now but people have died because of coronavirus that they caught at churches. and so to your point, kate, yes, why would we give people -- churches to little time to prepare and you're going to put out guidance on friday afternoon and that is patently on its face doesn't make sense but how much can you mitigate all of this at a church. a church or anyplace of worship is by definition where people come together. even if you clean everything, even if you decide to forego the collection plate, there is a limit to what you could do and the whole purpose is to get people into one place. religions value human life and value protecting what god has created and why would you want
to bring people together at the risk you could have a outbreak where people could die. it is a mystery to me. >> and kate, you could sum up the top line of what the study showed. >> yes. the top line showed that people who took hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine as hospitalized patients were more likely to die than those who didn't take hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine and more likely to get cardiac arrythmia. so these were hospitalized patients. this is one of several published studies that shows that hydroxychloroquine didn't work and there this study and others they found that it actually hurts. so this is the nail in the coffin of hydroxychloroquine orb chloroquine for patients in the hospital. the question is whether it might work for a prevention. the doctors i've talk to they don't see any reason why it would given what we've seen in hospitalized patients but they still need to study it. >> kaitlan, the president hasn't
taken questions today. >> dr. birx talked about the fda warning how they had not proven this is a way to treat or prevent getting coronavirus as the president has alluded to. but also what was really notable about what dr. birx said, she doesn't dismiss the study or dispute it but cited just how many people were surveyed and observed as part of the study that elizabeth was talking about. so they're saying what we know is this is the largest analysis to date of this, of looking at what effects hydroxychloroquine does have on coronavirus patients and so it only seems to be backing up what we've been seeing in other smaller studies. >> thank you so much. i appreciate it. just a reminder. this wasn't just once or twice that the president promoted this medication. he repeatedly encouraged people to take it based on the advice that we don't know. listen. >> i have a two week regimen of
hydroxychloroquine. >> a lot of doctors are taking it. a lot of people swear by it. >> i get a lot of tremendously positive moves on the hydroxy. >> what do you have to lose? take it. >> the hydroxychloroquine, try it. >> if things don't go as planned, it is not going to kill anybody. it will be wonderful, it will be so beautiful. it will be a gift from heaven if it works. >> what has been determined is it doesn't harm you. it's very powerful drug but it doesn't harm you. >> i'm not going to get hurt by it. it's been around for 40 years for malaria and lupus and other things. >> joining me a cardiologist from the scripps institution. doctor, thank you for being here. what is your reaction to this study? >> good to be with you, kate.
this is a powerful study. it has 96,000 people, patients in the hospital
with covid-19. 15,000 or more had hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine and this isn't a global study, 600 surveyed hospitals and what it showed is harm that is a higher death rate, about 35% increase in death rate for the people who have hydroxychloroquine. and that was even made worse with the heart arrythmia, these are malignant and it was twice as likely with hydroxychloroquine and it went up even higher with chloroquine or when it was used in combination with the drugs such as azithroa sin. this is now six more than all of the other studies combined of hydroxychloroquine. and to your point earlier,
elizabeth, the issue is that you picked up the tackicardia, the life-threatening arrythmia when the person is in the hospital so now we know that up to five fold when it is taken with azithromycin. you don't want this to happen outside of the hospital because there is no monitoring or way to treat it and that would be a cardiac arrest. so this is a dangerous drug. the risk of arrythmia we saw in the previous study, those were small studies. this is a very, very large study. and it's compelling new data. and that goes against the safety of hydroxychloroquine and it really questions all of the assertions that have been made previously. >> and could i -- obviously you're not the president's physician. of course that is clear. but do you think that the white
house physician who prescribed this treatment course for the president should answer some questions now, if this seems to kind of shut the book on this entire notion as you're describing it. >> well, there is a couple of things. there are some ongoing trials and they have to assess whether the new data is compelling enough to stop the trial and raising the ethical questions. as far as the white house doctor, obviously i didn't have access to this data, it was just published today in the lancet. but there was an update to very serious questions about safety or lack of efficacy. this takes it into a different dimension of harm, of diminishing survival. so this, i think, is really a different look. before we were just questioning the efficacy with the higher
risk of heart arrythmia and now we have a higher rate of death. >> dr. choppel, thank you so much
for your perspective. this weekend marks the unofficial kickoff to summer but this memorial day is going to be like -- unlike any other. with face masks and social distancing and guidelines and restrictions in place to continue to try to slow the spread of the virus. take a look at where the country stands right now in terms of new cases. we should be able to show that for you. there it is. in the past week that number, the number of new cases, is on the rise in 17 states. going down in nine and holding steady in 24. against that back drop, some officials are worried that the holiday weekend could erase the progress that states have made. here is the latest advice from dr. deborah birx for enjoying the weekend safely. >> so, please, as you go out this weekend, understand you can go out, you can be outside, you
can play golf, you can play tennis with mark boss, and then go to the beaches if you stay six feet apart. but remember that is your space and that is the space you need to protect and ensure that your social distancing for others. >> rosa flores is in delray beach, florida. what are you seeing there and what are you expecting this weekend? >> reporter: hi, kate. walk with me. because i could show you around. the rules are here in delray beach. you could walk and run and you could swim. all other activities are not allowed. but take a look for yourself. you could see that a lot of people are laying out on the beach. a lot of two piece suits, no three-piece suits. masks are not required here. only recommended if you can social distance. as you're looking at the pictureses, think about this, because last year about 17,000 people flocked to this beach on saturday alone during memorial
day weekend. when you add up saturday, sunday and monday, more than 67,000 people flocked here. so this is definitely not normal. not a normal scene. very much post covid-19. but also when you take a look at this, there is a lot of people laying out on the sun, things that they're not supposed to be doing but they are spacing out, kate, which is important. but, again, dr. fauci probably said it best, kate, you can go out, you just have to be safe and smart about it. kate. >> that is right. rosa, great to see you. thank you. coming up for us, a new development in the quest to find a coronavirus vaccine. the first published results of a clinical trial in humans, details ahead. and later are college sports on the way back. a big announcement from the ncaa. the commissioners of the s.e.c. and pac-12 conferences are going to be joining us. joe mantegna: an american tradition continues.
join me joe mantegna, gary sinise: and me gary sinise, joe mantegna: for a special presentation of the national memorial day concert. with performances from around the country honoring all of our american heroes. featuring general colin powell, sam elliott, cynthia erivo, laurence fishburne, trace adkins, esai morales, renée fleming, kelli o'hara, christopher jackson, and mary mccormack. the national memorial day concert. sunday, may 24th, 8/7 central on pbs.
new development in the quest for a vaccine against the coronavirus. coming from one of the first candidates to begin human trials. researchers say the vaccine was safe and produced antibodies in the healthy adults that took part. 108 people were part of the study. this is out of wuhan, china. what does this mean, then, in the worldwide search for a vaccine? joining me now is dr. paul offman from the vaccine education center at the children's hospital of philadelphia. it is great to have you become. so from the nonscientist, let me list out what i know happened in the study and you tell me what it means. 108 participants, their ages 18 to 60 years old and they all received a dose, either like a
light medium and severe dose, if you will. what is your reaction to this study? >> well, first of all i want to applaud those investigators for publishing this in the lancet. this gives us a chance to look at the data as compared to the way it seems to have gone up to this point which is science by press release. the researchers took a common human cold virus called adenovirus and they also re-engineered it so it would express the so-called spike preteen that sits on the surface of coronavirus, the thinking being as your body made the spike, you could make antibodies and then the coronavirus won't attach itself to your cells and cause disease. so that is all good. but they needed to give an enormous amount of virus. they needed to give roughly about 100 billion infectious particles, that meant they have a reasonably high side effect
rate. about 50% of people got fever at the low and medium dose, at the high dose some got severe fever and muscle pain, fatigue and headache. and which was a side effect. which is tolerable if you're trying to prevent a disease killing people every day. but only half of the patients god neutralizing antibodies to neutralize the virus's ability to infect. three quarters of the high dose developed antibodies. so in general i would say the data were pretty disappointing. >> not progress in your view? >> i don't think so. frankly if i was them, would you bail out on this vaccine at this point. >> that is so interesting. that is why i wanted to have you on. because you put it into english for me. the professor leading this study also made a note and i wanted to get you on what he noted here. he said the ability to trigger these immune responses does not necessarily indicate that the virus will protect humans from
covid-19. this gets to something to an ongoing question, how much protection does the antibody provide and how much immunity do we have? when will we know the answer to that, doctor, do you think? >> well, we'll know that when we do a large placebo controlled study where there are 20,000 people that get a vaccine at least and 10,000 get placebo and you could see whether or not your vaccine works and whether there is a correlation for that protection but that is the only definitive proof we have for protection and until that happens people should stop talking about whether or not a vaccine works because we're never going to know until we do that kind of study. >> yep. and announcement by press release is not the way to run a vaccine trial. doctor offman, thank you so much. still ahead for us, the ncaa allowing students back on campus for training. does that mean they are closing to football this season. the s.c.c. and pac-12
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voluntarily basis. the decision only includes football and basketball but it is significant considering it was shut down and everybody has an eye for the fall and what it means coming to the season. and greg zenky and larry scott commissioner of the pac-12. two members of the power five. gentlemen, it is great to have you. dave, today the s.e.c. announced that you're letting students back june 8th. what should people read into that. what are the chances that we'll see s.e.c. football in the fall. >> well we still have a long way to go until labor day weekend when the football season would kick off. our focus is on preparing to play as schedule. our announcement today is the first step in that process. it is something for which we at the conference office have been planning, our institutions have been planning for weeks and arguably months.
we've engaged medical experts to guide us and that led us to this initial step which i think is a healthy opportunity for our young people. >> larry, what does this decision mean for the pac-12? >> yeah, we're going through a similar evaluation. we have a world class medical advisory committee and you could imagine the hospitals and research centers we have in the pac-12. and we've got three states in our conference where gyms are already open and student athletes are waning -- are wanting to get back and we feel they'll be in a safer and healthier position if they could have access to the world class medical care, supervision, support they get on the campuses and if there are issues with the virus, to have access to the world class medical centers that we have. but these are baby steps, bringing safely student athletes back to campus and if things continue to progress in a positive direction, then
training camp for football could start as early as late july and we could be on a nice glide path to the support -- to the start of the college football season at the end of august. >> greg, i've heard you say you have 11 states in the s.e.c. with 11 different approaches toward social distancing restrictions. larry is kind of touching on this. if some schools can't play, some schools do move toward playing, do you move forward with a conference with the season without those schools? >> well, the beauty of the question is it's mid-may and we're looking at football season in late august, early september. and i've said right now time is an asset. we want to use that wisely. every day a little bit of that asset slips away. and our hope is we could return to this activity in a healthy way. people will heed the guidance. we have coaches doing public service announcements prominding
people to wear a mask because college football is a lever in our society to help remind folks that their behavior will create the opportunities across all of our 11 states and across the country to see college football, college volleyball, college soccer all return. >> larry, ohio state athletic director said this week he could see playing football with fans in the stadium, it would be about 20% capacity but that is still 20,000 fans at ohio state stadium. how likely is that for you? >> well, i think what we're going to see is a patch work state by state on the fan issue. i think collectively college football will move together to start playing hopefully the beginning of the season assuming we have support from public health officials. but i think we'll see a wide disparity across the country and i even see it in my own conference where states will allow fans, initially on a socially distanced basis and then in a phased approach and
starting to allow more and more and some states will be conservative and playing in front of an empty stadium which will be surreal and challenging but we realize this is a phased restart, reopening of society. early steps are to safely get students back to campus to start the competition and i think it is going to be some time until we see full stadium arena aagain. >> greg, just yesterday coach saban put out a psa encouraging people to wear masks. let me play it for folks. >> you need to be standing six feet away from me and haven't i told you you have to wear a mask when you're in this building. >> greg, besides critiquing his acting ability, this gets to the concept of athletes being role models. when it comes to setting a good example in the era of the coronavirus, how much does that weigh on you in these very important decisions you have to make here. >> very much so.
and, in fact, people as you would expect are quick to share their perspectives and opinions on decisions. that's part of the role that both larry and i, our colleagues occupy. yesterday on a video conference over our head coaches we reminded them, knowing a number of these type of public service announcements are in the cue that he understand how we, not just college football or higher education, that as we as a society get back to normal particularly when we have this universal public health crisis and the visible opportunities to use that influence in a positive way. so whether it is what nick has done or others have done early in this pandemic to be very much out front saying let's take care of ourselves, let's heed the public safety health advice and i think that shows the opportunity to lead from a platform that college football provides. >> looking at baby steps now.
a long way to go. but time is flying. we'll see. you have some big decisions ahead of you. i appreciate it. thank you. good luck. coming up, alabama governor loosens restrictions ahead of the holiday season but the mayor of montgomery alabama thinks too soon. he joins me next. (announcer) in this world where people are staying at home,
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infectious disease at the university of alabama at birmingham on the recent spike in cases in the state. but the governor is forging ahead with reopening. starting told athletic activities and theaters and childcare facilities and summer camps are allowed to reopen. here is the governor. >> we cannot sustain a delayed way of life as we search for a vaccine. there are many viruss that we live with and have worked necessary precaution news our daily lives and similarly it is time that we move forward and further open our state and if things don't get worse and i hope and pray they don't, then we'll continue putting personal responsibility on each and every individual citizen. >> joining me now someone sounding the alarm, mayor of montgomery steven reed. as i listen to the governor and i've listened to you, there
appears to be a disconnect or disagreement between you and state officials like the governor in terms of where things are in the state and where they should be. what is going on here? >> well, i think there is a difference in perspective of how we should move about reopening our economy as a former small business owner and one who was in the restaurant industry, i have signed the front and back of checks. so i understand the importance of small business, which supports our economy. however, i think we have to take every necessary precaution we can to protect the lives of our residents and our citizens here and i think we've been premature in reopening the economy, in alabama, i think it led to the spike. we've seen our numbers consistently go up. we've heard from doctors and medical ceo's and hospital ceo's that people are coming in worse
condition and we have a dwindling amount of icu beds. so i think when we look at the data, we have to acknowledge that maybe there have been some missteps and maybe look at ways to do a course correction. >> you mentioned icu beds. what is the current status in your hospitals. you've been extremely concerned about that. >> well we're extremely concerned since the onset of the pandemic we haven't wanted to overwhelm our health care system. and a couple of days ago when we had a press conference there was one icu bed available and now i'm told that today we have five. but that's in a geographic area that serves over 350,000 people. so that is not a lot of icu beds and any time we're at a critical point we have to sound the alarm and tell people this pandemic is not over. we have not won the battle versus covid-19 yet. we will get there. but we aren't there just yet and we need people to adhere to some
of the same guidelines that got us some progress over the last couple of months by staying at home, washing their hands as often as they can and wear a mask when out in public. i understand covid-19 fatigue. i understand everybody is ready to get back to the way things used to be. but in doing so they not only put their own lives at risk but the lives of their neighbors, their friends and family and co-workers by doing so. >> and more restrictions are being lifted today. with all of this in mind, what are you watching out for this weekend? >> well, listen, i don't think that the president lifting restrictions on churches is going to help anybody in the bible belt. certainly not going to help us in montgomery. it is not going to help any of my colleagues that are mayors all across this country because we know faith is important and spirituality is important you don't want people grouping together right now and given where things stand in alabama. so what we're looking for is for
people to take personal responsibility but also we want them to be affair of the circumstances surrounding them in this community. we need people to understand that now is not the time to relax and although they may not be connected to the statistics their hearing about, they are connected to other people, they are connected to family and friends and when you look at the fact that here in homontgomery r cases have doubled. seven since last night and an additional death. that means there is still a crisis. and we aren't theis and we have to be patient and vigilant about our approach to this if we're going to get through it and no one wants to get through this any faster than i do. but we have to do it the right way. and i just think that right now we have to press pause a little bit and slow things down. >> what are you hearing from churches, from pastors, from houses of worship in montgomery?
because you hear the president today, the white house is putting out guidance. do you think that you're going to have a flood of churches opening up this weekend? >> the faith-based community has been outstanding over the last couple of months. i've had consistent conversations with them and even a call this week. they've been great and they've been very responsible. and i don't expect that the leaders that i've been talking to and the pastors who have led these churches for years are going to make a short-term decision right now. i think that they're exercising caution, out of respect for their parishioners. and i expect that to continue. however, there is always going to be a fringe element out there and i think what the president did today only gives that element more reason to do what they're going to do and that puts their parishioners at risk and also puts our first responders at risk. also puts those medical
professionals at risk and those people helping on the front lines at risk because they're being encouraged to come and gather and that is not something that we ought to really set an example around and i don't think now is the time for us to do that. so i think overall we'll have a positive experience over the next few weeks but i don't think the actions taken by the president today sends the right message. >> mayor reed, thank you so much. good luck. >> thank you. still ahead for us, in south carolina, amusement parks are reopening in time for the holiday weekend. but how could they keep it safe for all of the families who come to enjoy? we're going to talk to one business reopening just today. truly transformative sleep. so, no more tossing and turning. because only tempur-pedic adapts and responds to your body... ...so you get deep, uninterrupted sleep. during the tempur-pedic summer of sleep, all tempur-pedic mattresses are on sale! during the tempur-pedic summer of sleep, stand up to moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis.
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just into cnn, we now know when one of the nation's largest theme parks will be reopening. universal studios in orlando just announced it has received the green light from florida's governor no reopen to the public two weeks from today, friday, june 5. universal says it will be implementing stringent health and safety procedures in doing so including requiring face coverings for all guests as well as temperature checks before entering the park. from there, let's go to south carolina where much more than beaches are reopening this memorial day weekend. today the state is allowing all sorts of tourist attractions to get back to business. amusement parks, water parks, muse ea museums, zoos, all on the list. joining me now is tim marks, vice president of fun warehouse.
thanks for being here, tim. you opened today at 10:00, i saw on your website. how is it going? >> it's been a little slow starting out. we expected that. thank you for letting us come on the show today. we're excited to get started again. it's been a very, very long two months for us. we've really struggled. of course we're a little different than restaurants or any other places because we have not reduced revenues. we have had zero revenue. in addition to fun warehouse, we also run golf courses on the grand strand. i don't want to just speak for me, but for all our amusement attractions, it's a been a tough road and we're all excited to get back at this. >> fun warehouse as a huge complex, and getting back at this includes new measures to keep people safe.
what is that like? >> we're ready, and we know this is not a game. we've mitigated our hazards that we're going to face to the best of our abilities. we've cut our capacity by 50%. we're actually going to go to about 70%. also we're going to -- 95% of our staff has been completing some covid training through service aid, which is a really, really good thing. we're requiring of course our staff to wear masks and doing temperature checks. all of our floors are clearly marked. a lot of the same things that you hear in other locations we're doing. some specific ones that for sure we're doing is electrostatic cleaning of our laser tag and our inflatables and go carts. we'll extending our queue lines and our cafe seating has been reduced. the number of birthday parties
we'll host has been reduced and we've opened the rooms up a little more as well. there's lot of things to think of in a 56,000-square-foot facility. >> for sure. and you talked about the hit of having no revenues coming in, what that's been like for you. how long can you sustain at this reduced capacity? >> well, that's the million dollar question, isn't it? you know, it's tough. you know, we're really not as afraid right now as what we will be, say, january of next year. you know, as myrtle beach is a very seasonal area, we really only have three months to really get the revenues to support us. and to do so, it's very difficult. so surviving the winter and losing, you know, a third of your revenues early on is tough.
>> good luck, thank you for coming on, and good luck for this weekend and the season. >> thank you very much. coming up, breaking news, federal health officials release new guidelines for those houses of worship that we've been discussing. the lead with dana bash is next, we'll have that. restaurants across the country are starting to reopen but thousands of workers are still struggling as the industry tries to bounce back. cnn hero doc henley has jumped in to help. >> we got the order that all restaurants had to shut down by 5:00. it was devastating. we created this program. we just wanted it to be something that doesn't just give people food to survive during this time. >> fresh apples, fresh oranges. >> but also give them thing to help them thrive. >> we'll feed two people for an entire week. >> that sense of fear and stress just immediately turned off and was just focused on, what can we
do to help. i saw a single mama, when she opened it up, she started crying. i really think that we as a people are going to come through this stronger and more together. >> for much more, please go to cnnheroes.com. i'm kate bolduan. thanks for joining us. we'll be right back. >> announcer: "cnn heroes." brought to you by subaru. love. it's what makes subaru subaru. 'd makes subaru, subaru. and right now, love is more important than ever. in response to covid-19, subaru and our retailers are donating fifty million meals to feeding america, to help feed those who now need our help. its all part of our commitment to our communities through subaru loves to help. love, it's what makes subaru, subaru.
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this is cnn breaking news. >> welcome to "the lead." i'm dana bash in for jake tapper today. this afternoon president trump is declaring all houses of worship essential, claiming he will override governors to allow churches and places of worship to open. >> some governors have deemed liquor stores and abortion clinics as essential. but have left out churches and other how was worship. i call upon governors to allow our churches and places of worship to open right now. >> but white house press secretary kayleigh mcenany was unable to clarify what authority the president actually has to override governors on this. perhaps because that authority doesn't appear to exist. let's get straight to cnn white house correspondent jeremy diamond. so jeremy, instead of answering