tv CNN Newsroom With Ana Cabrera CNN October 25, 2020 3:00pm-4:00pm PDT
live in the "cnn newsroom," i'm ana cabrera in new york. with nine days until the election nothing can keep vice president mike pence off the campaign trail, not even a coronavirus outbreak in his inner circle. we're looking at live images of the rally in north carolina. let's listen in. >> i'm telling you what, you could tell last night in lumberton but you can especially tell tonight, north carolina is trump country. thank you all for coming out. thanks so much for coming out
and standing in the pouring rain to hear from this vice president about the choice that we face, the progress that we've made and what we all need to do over the next nine days. it's really great to share the stage today with a couple of people i deeply admire, an accomplished doctor, a man who traveled all over the world healing the sick, in the state house a leader in north carolina in the fight against opioid abuse since 2019. he's been one of the greatest allies of the mag, a agenda on capitol hill, join me in thanking congressman murphy for being an outstanding leader and a great friend. also great to be here with a man who grew up on a family farm in four oaks and, again, emerged as one of the strongest conservative voices on capitol hill. he's a champion for north carolina agriculture. join me in thanking congressman david rouser.
we're all standing in the rain for one reason and one reason only, that is north carolina and america need four more years of president donald trump in the white house. >> four years ago, almost to the day here atk kinston airport, a movement was born, every walk of life. here in north carolina you believed we could be strong again. you believed we could be prosperous again. you said yes top president donald trump in 2016 and i know north carolina is going to say yes to four more years of president donald trump in 2020.
but first things first. i can tell you're people who know how to get things done and stick with it. after you leave here today i want you to get up tomorrow morning if you haven't already got it done and vote, north carolina. vote to re-elect president donald trump to the white house. early vote has already started, i checked on the way here. the president just cast his vote yesterday. karen and i just voted back in the hoosier state. men and women of north carolina, you've got to get it done. if you need a little help, i can tell you, go ten minutes down the road tomorrow, teachers memorial school gym, 500 marcella drive here in kinston, open 8:00 to 7:30. remember, friends don't let friends vote alone. bring a family member, bring a neighbor, bring a friend and
vote for four more years of president donald trump in the white house. get it done. i know you know why. >> okay. so the vice president on the campaign trail even after an outbreak within his inner circle including his chief of staff, including his body man. let's get to john harwood and cnn and sasha in north carolina at that pence rally. natasha, we saw a jubilant mike pence at this rally, despite the outbreak amongst his staff. >> right. i think you have the video of him coming off of "air force two" just a moment ago. he was wearing his mask. something we don't always see. you could see him running toward the podium energetically to an excited crowd here, about 250 people. about an hour before this event
began, there was an announcement over the loud speaker telling people that masks are required here. and in just looking around at the folks who are standing in the bleachers, some of them are, in fact, wearing their masks but not everyone. the chairs that are set just behind us, there were groups of chairs socially distanced at first. in the last 20 minutes or so, people moved those chairs closer to the front to have a better look. a very energetic crowd again, about 250 people in the rain. they don't seem to mind. they were waiting for that president for vice president pence stepping off "air force two" wearing his mask, at least five of his staffers tested positive for coronavirus. he's clearly not in quantity. he's here speaking to the crowd trying to get the president elected. >> let me turn to i don't know harwood at the white house. it has been a drip drip drip of information and new diagnoses
we're hearing about in the last 24 hours. there's been no transparency on this new outpractice. >> there has not been. that's consistent with the white house pattern. we remember a few weeks ago hope hicks tested positive and later that evening donald trump tested positive. that did not come out from the white house, it came out because of the reporting in the early evening that forced their hand. mark meadows acknowledged to jake tapper that he had not wanted to disclose the tests of the multiple people around vice president pence. he made the argument that was about their privacy and wasn't public import or other people at that level. obviously marc short, his chief of staff, one of the most senior white house officials and his body man also tested positive, which is an indication that the vice president may have had
serious, serious exposure to covid-19 and yet the vice president is out on the campaign trail. no indication he's going to get off the trail. >> how do you know or do you know how they are handling it internally, john? are people in the white house kept in the dark or are they being more forthcoming with those people? >> well, it is the pattern for the white house has been to give out minimal information even internally. many people have been finding out about these diagnoses from the news media itself. it alarms people who have been exposed to the vice president and his aides. >> john, stand by. i want to bring in a few more people to our conversation. analyst and adviser to four u.s. presidents david gergen. jackie, from the daily best. a cnn political analyst and emergency physician at brown university and cnn medical
analyst jonathan reiner, director of medicine at the university. david, let me start with you. why do you think vice president pence is on the campaign trail even as coronavirus in his circle spreads. >> the obsession of winning victory dwarfs everything else with this group. we've known that. you have to feel badly for the victims. this was not fair to them. even so, i think what's stunning to this, what the vice president is trying to do is keep the story tamped down. with 10 days left every day devoted to the pandemic is a day lost, a day squandered trying to do this comeback. what we have over the course of time, maybe five or six people close to -- in part of the biden circle have come down with covid whereas vice president pence, three dozen. it's a 6-1 ratio. can't everybody make a lot of
meaning out of that? no wonder it's a big story. >> dr. reiner, we have learned at least two of these five people we know of infected with the coronavirus are his chief of staff and body man, somebody with him day and night dealing with everything from papers, speech text, facilitate phone calls and meetings, even dealing with pens for autographs. what's your reaction? >> well, next to maybe mrs. pence, there are no two people who spend more time with the vice president than his chief of staff and his body men. they will have spent many hours with the vice president in the last several days. what i will say is this, the only reason for the vice president to still be on the road now is at some point in the last three months he's had the
virus. that sounds like an outrage thing to say. that's the only explanation for not being in quarantine now. how are we going to tell our patients who have had a first degree exposure, the waitress in the coffee shop, how are we going to tell them to stay home for 14 days when the vice president of the united states completely thumbs his nose at these common sense requirements? >> doctor, the white house is claiming vice president pence is an essential employee. that's how they are, i guess, going around their own guidance from the cdc's guidance and coronavirus task force virus he heads up. does that make any sense to you? >> my definition of essential workers are people who are frontline health care workers. they are the people who work to keep food on our tables. they are our police officers and our firefighters. to me being on the campaign does
not seem like an essential function for our country. now, he needs to be vice president. that is essential. but he doesn't need to be out in public. as dr. reiner said, this goes against every piece of guidance we give to our patients and their loved ones when we make a diagnosis of covid-19. it's stay home. if you must be in public, if you are one of those essential workers, you must wear a mask and keep a close eye on yourself for symptoms. i don't see why he thinks he's above the rest of us. >> the white house calls these campaign rallies essential. do you think these pence rallies are going to make a difference for trump in the election? >> by and large the whole mission for team trump right now is to make it look like everything is okay, everything is normal. for that, i guess if you're part of the campaign, that would be essential because everything is decidedly not normal. there are spikes all over the
country including states the president and vice president have been in recently. because of that, listen. mark meadows said the quiet part out loud today in his interview with jake tapper, saying they are not going to try to control the spread of the pandemic at this point. they are just going to try to mitigate it in other ways. they haven't taken masks seriously at the beginning and treating it like some personal choice rather than something essential not only to keep yourself safe but keep the medical professionals here can say more than i can, to keep other people safe from potentially spreading the virus. the white house hasn't taken it seriously from the very beginning, and they are not going to start in the next nine days. >> natasha chen is still there in north carolina at this rally ongoing. natasha, what are you sensing there in the crowd? do you get a sense they are concerned? has the vice president discussed the coronavirus or his own circle that's been infected at
this point? >> ana, no, he hasn't addressed covid-19 among his staffers. as i mentioned earlier, there was an announcement over the loud speakers about an hour before this event started telling people masks are required. if you take a look at the crowd, you know, we're seeing that a lot of people in the bleachers are, in fact, wearing masks. not everyone. and the chairs that are in front of the vice president right now, those were spaced apart. they were set up in little pods, so to speak. right before this began, people started moving all those chairs forward trying to get a good view of the vice president coming in. can you see they are all standing pretty close together. i don't see a whole lot of social distancing going on. again, the people who are facing us, a lot of them do seem to be wearing their masks. you can tell they are excited and the topic of coronavirus has not really come up here anna.
>> david, again, the vice president is the head of the white house coronavirus task force. even chris christie has said he was surprised that the vice president isn't quarantining. what message is he sending? >> he's sending a message that he's modeling a very dismiss cavalier attitude toward this virus. increasingly the white house -- i find it unbelievable. they seem to be moving to the whole notion of herd immunity. that is protect the elderly but let everybody else be exposed to the virus and that will knock it out over time. we know from scientists who uniformly oppose herd immunity that hundreds of thousands of people could lose their life. what we have here is a pattern, unfortunately sadly, never before seen in my lifetime, of a president and vice president who are putting their own people's lives at risk in order to advance their political good fortunes.
>> jackie, the vice president said this what we're seeing right now is proof that this white house has given up on trying to even protect the american people. >> joe biden said that. >> yes, joe biden. >> there are many vice presidents being discussed at the moment. >> thank you for clarifying for me. >> no problem. no problem. >> the former vice president. >> yes. that's been one of the key parts of the biden campaign in the last couple of months is they are believing science, wear a mask, and pointing out the flaws in this white house's handling of the pandemic, because this election, whether the white house wants to acknowledge it or not, comes down to the response of the pandemic because it's affecting every part of everyone's lives at this point, no matter what you do. so that is something the vice president and kamala harris have chosen to hammer on.
that's not going to change in particular because the virus is out of control in so many places around the country. >> jackie, david, dr. rany, reiner, natascha chen and john harwood, my thanks to all of you. we'll take you back live to north carolina as we sit on these pictures and take a quick break. the vice president is speaking to voters on the heels of more coronavirus infections inside the white house. want to brain? unlike ordinary memory supplements- neuriva has clinically proven ingredients that fuel 5 indicators of brain performance. memory, focus, accuracy, learning, and concentration. try our new gummies for 30 days and see the difference.
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it can read? it's not complicated. now you can save more with at&t wireless plans and get things your way with features like hbo max included. okay. this is video just moments ago as vice president mike pence literally ran off of "air force two" into a rally in kinston, north carolina. he's speaking there live now. let's listen in. >> support the right of americans to peaceful protest. it's enshrined in our constitution. but rioting and looting is not peaceful protest. burning businesses is not free
speech. for months all joe biden talked about was peaceful protesters, remember? as americans literally watched businesses in communities around this country burn to the ground. i was in minneapolis not long ago with a wonderful african-american business owner named flora westboro. flora told me about the night a few nights after the killing of george floyd that she watched the violent protesters come closer and closer to that little salon she had built 35 years ago until the night came that they literally burned her to the ground. the truth is joe biden would double down on the very policies that have led to violence in america's streets. when you start to withdraw support for those who protect and serve our families, you only
embolden those who would do violence to our families and our communities. now joe biden explains it all by saying in his words that america is systemically racist. he and kamala harris say they believe police have a, quote, implicit bias against minorities. when joe biden was asked if he supported funding for law enforcement, he replied, yes, absolutely. but under president donald trump i'll make you a promise. we're not going to defund the police. not now, not ever. we all know standing here tonight we don't have to choose between supporting courageous men and women of law enforcement and supporting our african-american neighbors and family and friends and other minorities and families in our cities. we've done both for the last
four years and we're going to keep supporting law enforcement and keep expanding jobs, educational opportunities and safety for african-americans and all the families in our cities for four more years. we're going to have law and order in every city in this nation, for every american of every race and creed and color, so help us god. so it's about law and order, and it's about standing strong for the rule of law. as we stand here tonight, i'm proud to report president trump has already appointed more than 200 conservative judges to our courts at every level, and they are all men and women of integrity who will uphold
god-given rights to liberties in our constitution, like the freedom of speech, freedom of religion, the second amendment right to keep and bear arms. last month we rightfully paused to honor the service of justice ruth bader ginsburg. when the memorials were over president trump fulfilled his constitutional duty when he nominated a brilliant, principled, conservative woman who loves the constitution to the supreme court of the united states, judge amy coney barrett. isn't she great? >> again, you've been listening live to remarks from the vice president in kinston, north carolina, at this campaign rally he has attended obviously even after we've learned at least
five members of his circle, including multiple aides, including his chief of staff, including his body man have all become infected with the coronavirus. as we've been listening in, not a word about the kroefrcoronavi. i understand he mentioned it earlier in remarks about the economy. david gergen is with us. just yesterday the u.s. saw more than 80,000 new cases for the second day in a row. those are now the two top days of coronavirus cases in the u.s., unfortunately, since the pandemic began. meantime south korea, which reported its first case on coronavirus the same day as the u.s. back in january had just 61 cases yesterday. why has had white house failed so badly to control the virus in the u.s.? >> it's going to be one of the great mysteries historians will look back and ask themselves and puzzle about it for years to come. there's no rational answer. time and time again, the
president has made decisions that are irrational, unexpected, made everybody feel is he still with it? is he working for somebody else? why is he intentionally throwing away this campaign? it's a great mystery. in particular, in particular, it's the cavalier attitude toward so many people dying. 225,000 people and pence is giving a speech about law enforcement in which maybe 10, 15 people have been arrested -- not arrested but killed because of protests? it's not mayhem in the streets, there's death in the country. why the vice president isn't dealing with it, why hasn't he gone into quarantine already? don't you think his doctors are advising this if he's been exposed. other people under quarantine but what about him. isn't he a potential spreader here? there's a lot we don't know, anna. i think it will be years and
years before historians unravel the mysteries. >> david gergen, as always, thank you. a quick break, before first here is christine romans with before the bell report. >> hi, anna, days before the election investors get a key piece of u.s. data. release first look at third quarter gross domestic product. it's expected to show annual growth of 35% ark huge bounceback from the second quarter. despite that big number, a record, economists caution economy recovering, he's expected the sound of screeching brakes going into the fourth quarter. the latest job benefit data mixed, first time claims feld below 8,000 for the first time since mid march. the number of people on emergency unemployment compensation rose by half a million. that's money for those maxed out on state benefits. big tech in focus.
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let's take you back now to north carolina where vice president mike pence is speaking. this is after a coronavirus outbreak among his staff. he just addressed the coronavirus among the people at his rally. let's listen. >> our president did what no american president has ever done, he suspended all travel from china, the second largest economy in the world. president trump put the health of america first. now, joe biden said that that was, quote, xenophobic. he said it was hysterical. he said three days later to close off travel anywhere in a pandemic would make things worse. i can tell you as the head of
the white house coronavirus task force, president trump's decision to suspend all travel from travel saved untold american lives and bought us invaluable time to stand up the greatest national mobilization since world war ii. it's true. we reinvented testing prosecute of our natasha chen is live at the rally in north carolina. natasha, we heard him talk in more general terms about the vaccine that everybody is anxiously awaiting. did he address the members of his own staff and offer his concern about their health after they became infected with the coronavirus? >> no, he did not, ana. absolutely not. he talked about the fact that we are close to a vaccine in this country. he talked about president trump's initial travel ban to and from china and accusing joe biden of calling that move
xenophobic and talked about reopening schools now, reiterating that president trump is the right leader to bring the economy back. so the discussion of the coronavirus has been about the progress he feels this administration had made and also how this administration he feels could be the answer to bringing people back from this economic trouble that we're in. there wasn't really a mention of the numbers of americans who have died of this virus or the people who have tested positive in the white house among his own staff, so there was not as much discussion about that, ana, more about touting what he feels are president trump's accomplishments in the department. >> today we learned more than 225,000 americans have died from the coronavirus in the u.s. natasha, you mentioned earlier that there was an announcement before the rally that everybody was required to wear masks.
are they enforcing that requirement and is everybody wearing a mask? >> you know, it's funny. the announcement heard by our crew an hour before this started was not repeated. it was said one time. it was said before many of these people behind us actually got here. in looking around at this crowd, we could see that some of the people, many of them in the bleachers who are facing us are wearing masks. i can see a number of them in the crowd facing vice president pence also wearing them. clearly not everyone is doing so. there doesn't seem to be anybody here asking them to put on a mask either. >> okay. natasha chen, thank you. we'll take a quick break and be right back. stay with us. you're live in the "cnn newsroom." i'm greg, i'm 68 years old.
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traveled to new hampshire and maine. you can see everybody here required to wear a mask, the president and first lady are not handing out any candy. we're told social distancing is in full effect. they are separated from the parade of children and costumes walking along the driveway of the white house. now to your week in presidential briefs. before and afters are ramping up efforts to interfere in the u.s. election. top u.s. intelligence officials announced last week russia and iran successfully obtained voter registration information and iran posed as proud boys to send intimidating e-mails to voters. a former senior adviser to the national security adviser in the obama administration. sam, what is your az mint of the current election landscape. >> let's look at takeaways. bad actors haven't been deterred under president trump, they have been empowered. just looking at the public
disclosures we have from the fbi and others, it is clear that russia and iran have intensified their influence operations and cyber attacks against us under president trump. in trump's legacy, ana, is did he find by the fact that he's provided ammunition to anniversaries when it comes to influence operations. trump's own senior consider intelligence official warned that foreign actors are amplifying trump's lies about our elections as part of their influence attacks against all of us. now, while officials have warned about ongoing influence operations, dni ratcliffe did emphasize our physical votes remain secure. this brings taos a disturbing domestic reality, we can't trust dni. his track record of dequalifying and cherry picking helpful to trump really a question of
anything he says. this adds to confusion. adversaries love that. we are less able to defend ourselves because we may not be accurately informed by the director of national intelligence. >> with that strategic backdrop, what are the key risks you're focusing on. >> let's look at some distinct periods of heightened risk. in the run-up to physically casting votes, we know foreign actors are engaged in active operations. the goal is to influence american perceptions and potentially to influence their vote and also more strategically s sew confusion about democracy. we know iran and russia have targeted voting infrastructure. they could choose to flip the switch metaphorically thinking and shut down infrastructure on or before voting day. physical voting sites represent a risk. they are high-value targets. foreign and domestic may seek to
physically attack sites to harm americans and sew confusion. in the aftermath of casting ballots, intelligence and law enforcement warning about two risks, influence with foreign actors to sow confusion and physical risk, violence in the streets and riots, those kinds of threats. law enforcement intelligence officials assets in terms of personnel and intelligence gathering capabilities to try to keep us safe. >> a lot of question, iran or russia the biggest risk. president putin defending hunter biden saying he doesn't see anything criminal. that doesn't square with putin trying to help trump. what's your analysis on this? >> this is putin, so confusing about his content. if vladimir putin wants to do
something to get on biden's good side he can uninvade ukraine. his comments are ridiculous. when we try to compare iran and russia, keep in mind one thing. all threats to elections are dangerous. if we mix apples and oranges we get some kind of confusing kool-aid rather than an accurate assessment of what to look out for. russia has been attacking elections since at least 2014 using a range of active covert messages. iran is comic-con-of-attacking but they are smaller scaled compared to russia. both present threats but russia presents multipronged long-standing threat to democracy. >> thanks so much. coming up, she was a rebel at a time when women were expected to be seen rather than heard. cnn series, looking back at one of history's most outspoken first ladies. flu symptoms.relief from your wd so when you need to show your cold who's boss, grab mucinex all-in-one... and get back to your rhythm.
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>> i was rather a rebellious first lady. i'm afraid i did some things which were not usual for the lady in the white house. >> the role the first lady traditionally had been so constricted. was about socializing and being a hostess and that was it. and that was not eleanor's life. >> at that point, she was on the board of 17 major reform organizations in new york state. had her own career as a journalist and as a social activist. >> she is an absolute powerhouse. she's writing for the women's democratic news and working for the democratic party, so leaving all of that to come to the white house and do what? hold teas? pick new china? this is a privilege not to live in the white house and have fancy dinners. the privilege is you have a megaphone to speak to the world. if you can figure out how to use
it. >> joining us now, cnn contributor, kate anderson-broward. she's the author of the book, "first women: the grace and power of america's modern first ladies." so, modern being one of the key words in your book there, kate. how did eleanor roosevelt really expand the traditional role of first lady, not only for herself but for all these first ladies who followed her? >> well, you would need hours and hours to talk about her because she was the longest-serving first lady. she was the first lady for 12 years. and she was the ahead of her time in every way. you know, she fought for racial justice. one of my favorite stories about her is when she resigned from the daughters of the american revolution because they owned constitution hall and they would not allow the celebrated african-american singer, mary ann anderson, to sing there, and eleanor wrote about this in her weekly "my day" column and said
you had an opportunity to do something good, you didn't do it, therefore, i'm announcing my resignation. this is really incredible at the time. she also had press conferences where she only invited female reporters to these press conferences, which then forced newspapers to hire female reporters. so she did so many things just decades and decades ahead of her time and she's one of the most celebrated first ladies. president truman later called her first lady of the world because of her work with the united nations human rights commission. so, you know, it's hard -- every first lady seems to be judged against eleanor roosevelt, and she just did so much so ahead of her time, and i think this episode tonight really reminds us of the ability that first ladies have to change the world. >> and it's a reminder of the power that's within all of us as women, too. she was such a female empowerer.
fdr, of course, couldn't walk due to his battle with polio earlier in life, so eleanor stepped up for her husband and she traveled the country connecting with citizens on his behalf. how unprecedented was that for a first lady to take on a role like that? >> i mean, it's incredible that she -- she was raised with so much wealth. she's the niece of president teddy theodore roosevelt, and she grew up with servants and nancys and, yet, she connected. the word, empathy, we use so much now, she showed fdr the different new deal projects that were working. she took him early in their courtship to a slum in new york city to show him how people were living and the devastation. he hadn't really seen before. so she was his eyes and ears in the white house. and that was something very unusual at the time. and, you know, some of his advisers told her to stick to her knitting and, fortunately, for us, she didn't.
she did so much in the role. >> and while i have you, kate, i have to ask you quickly about melania trump, a very private first lady. nine days out from the election. do you have any insight whether this is a job melania trump wants for another four years? >> i don't think she's terribly happy in the white house, and she clearly feels like she has been -- she feels aggrieved, you know, but i also think that she has this tremendous opportunity that she should use more. we don't see her on the campaign trail at all. she backed out of an event in pennsylvania recently. and the president has had to send his other family members out there. i think that she's -- she's passed up some opportunities in this role. this "first ladies" series reminds us of the power first ladies have. >> absolutely. kate anderson-brouweanderson-br you, be well. be sure to tune in.
a new episode of "first ladies" airs right here on cnn at 10:00. we'll be right back. >> tech: every customer has their own safelite story. this couple was on a camping trip... ...when their windshield got a chip. they drove to safelite for a same-day repair. and with their insurance, it was no cost to them. >> woman: really? >> tech: that's service you can trust. >> singers: ♪ safelite repair, safelite replace. ♪
this is cnn breaking news. >> you're live in the cnn newsroom. thanks for being with us on this sunday evening. i'm ana cabrera in new york. as if there were any doubt these last nine days before the election were going to be wild, add this into the mix. another coronavirus outbreak at the white house. you're looking at the head of the coronavirus task force, vice president mike pence, campaigning in north carolina just a short time agoft