tv CBS Evening News With Norah O Donnell CBS September 25, 2020 3:12am-3:43am PDT
some wonder why an officer is charged for firing shots into a neighboring apartment but not for the six that killed breonna taylor. could it all come down to pennsylvania? "2020: america decides, counting your vote." we visit the crucial swing state to find out why as many as 100,000 votes could be invalidated. twin-demic? as covid cases rise in 30 state, why experts fear an even bigger health crisis when flu season season collides with covid-19. trusting the vaccine: why new york's governor says his state will review the coronavirus shot on its own. and american innovation: wifi on wheels, empty school buses helping thousands of students log on for school every day. >> this is the "cbs evening news" with norah o'donnell, reporting from the nation's capital. good evening, >> o'donnell: good evening, and thank you for joining us. down in battleground state polls, tonight president trump
says he's not sure this year's election will be honest, and he's falsely claiming tonight that mail-in voting is a whole big scam. well, the president's new attack on the integrity of the election comes just one day after he refused to commit to a peaceful transition of power if he loses in november. well, today, in a direct rebuke of the president, the u.s. senate, led by republicans, unanimously passed a resolution reaffirming its commission to a peaceful transition of office. and tonight, republican congressional leaders are distancing themselves from the rying to ca comments. and while president trump is once again trying to cast doubt on ballots cast by mail, his own f.b.i. director was on capitol hill today testifying that the u.s. has never experienced large-scale voter fraud by mail or at the ballot box. and it all comes just 40 days before election day. at the same time, major cities are bracing tonight for the possibility of more protests over that grand jury decision not to charge the police officers who shot breonna taylor.
there's a lot of new reporting we want to share with you tonight. our team of correspondents is standing by. cbs' weijia jiang is going to lead off our coverage tonight from the white house with all that news. good evening, weijia. >> reporter: good evening, norah. today, the white house press secretary said president trump would accept the results of a free and fair election, but the president himself would not say that, fueling concerns that he will not relinquish power, even if he loses. today, president trump arrived to the supreme court to a chorus of boos and chants. >> vote him out! >> reporter: the president was paying respects to the late justice ruth bader ginsburg. mr. trump wants to fill her seat by election day, predicting whoever it is will help determine the result, which he argued may not be accurate because of ballot fraud. >> we want to make sure the election is honest, and i'm not sure that it can be. i don't-- i don't know that it
can be with this whole situation, unsolicited ballots. >> reporter: history suggests that's not true, according to mr. trump's own f.b.i. director, who testified today on capitol hill. >> now, we have not seen historically any kind of coordinated national voter fraud effort in a major election, whether it's by mail or otherwise. >> reporter: on wednesday, president trump even cited mail- in ballots as the reason why he may not engage in a peaceful transfer of power. >> well, we're going to have to see what happens. you know that i've been complaining very strongly about the ballots. >> reporter: joe biden said he was not surprised to hear the president's view. >> what country are we in? look, he says the most irrational things. >> reporter: several senior republican lawmakers insisted there would be an orderly transition, no matter who wins. >> it doesn't matter what the president says. the constitution says the presidency ends on january 20.
>> reporter: mitt romney, a frequent critic of the president, said the thought of not handing over power was unthinkable and unacceptable and the behavior of an authoritarian regime. mr. trump also made controversial remarks about the f.d.a. considering stricter standards to authorize the use of a covid-19 vaccine, claiming he could override scientists. >> we're going to take a look at it and ultimately, the white house has to approve it. >> reporter: new york governor andrew cuomo doubted the administration's credibility and tsid his state is forming its own committee to review own committee to review and distribute a vaccine. >> the first question is, is the vaccine safe? frankly, i'm not going to trust the federal government's opinion. >> reporter: but today, dr. anthony fauci insisted the board that is responsible for assessing the safety of a vaccine works independently of politics and will not be beholden to president trump.
norah. >> o'donnell: weijia jiang, thank you. now to louisville, where city officials are pleading for calm tonight after two officers were shot during wednesday's unrest. protests continued over the decision not to charge any of the police officers with killing breonna taylor. cbs' jericka duncan reports tonight from louisville. ( gunfire ) >> reporter: you could hear the gunfire erupt in downtown louisville. >> officer down. >> reporter: major aubrey gregory and officer robinson desroches are recovering tonight after being struck in the hip and abdomen. police arrested the suspect, 26- year-old larynzo johnson, and charged him with two counts of assault and 14 counts of wanton endangerment. >> what we saw last night with the two police officers being shot is, obviously, completely unacceptable. >> say her name! >> breonna taylor! >> reporter: the shooting capped a night of protests in louisville and around the country. >> i am so sorry, baby. >> reporter: as daylight broke,
so, too, did the emotions of people like ronay williams. >> they robbed the family! they robbed her of her life! >> reporter: outside of taylor's apartment is a small memorial. >> it was gun shells on my door frame and on the mat and everything. >> reporter: de'ja moore, who says she was questioned by investigators, lives right across from taylor's now-vacant apartment. you were there that night. >> yeah. >> reporter: what do you recall? >> they didn't announce themselves. because we have hollow walls. we would have heard them. everybody would have heard them. >> reporter: for the first time since yesterday's announcement, we heard from taylor's mother through an instagram post, a picture of her daughter with the hashtag #thesystemfailedbreonna. >> breonna taylor for me and for many of us, she hit a chord. >> reporter: trained attorney sadiqa reynolds is president of the local chapter of the civil rights group the urban league. >> we have the police officers' system of justice. then we have a system of justice for the white and privileged.
and then there is that black justice that shows up sometimes, but very irregularly, and can't be counted on. >> reporter: protests continue another night, and as you can see from our aerial shot, the perimeter is still blocked off by police, and a curfew is to be put in place by 9:00. meanwhile, we're learning that breonna taylor's mother is expected to give her first public comments tomorrow morning after learning of the kentucky attorney general's decision not to press any charges directly related to breonna taylor's death. norah. >> o'donnell: all right, jericka duncan, thank you. the f.b.i. says it is investigating all aspects of the breonna taylor shooting, including whether her civil rights were violated. tonight, many civil rights leaders say the decision not to bring charges for breonna taylor's death exposes a legal system heavily tilted in favor of police. here's cbs' adriana diaz. >> reporter: the lack of charges in breonna taylor's death has left many here stunned. >> i'm just disgusted by it. >> reporter: their shock came
when kentucky attorney general daniel cameron announced wednesday that the shooting was legally justified. >> this justification bars us from pursuing criminal charges in miss breonna taylor's death. >> reporter: after taylor's boyfriend fired one shot at who he thought was an intruder, the officers responded with more than 30 shots, six hitting breonna taylor. kentucky's use of force law is broad, allowing officers to use deadly force if they believe there's a risk of physical injury or death. louisville city council president david james: >> the phrase of "i was in fear of my life," leaves a lot of room and latitude for people to interpret that as justifiable when, in fact, it may not be justifiable. >> reporter: some point to the fact that since 2015 that there have been more than 5,000 fatal police shootings. 71 officers have been charged with murder or manslaughter. only 19 have been convicted. how much onus is on prosecutors to bring charges against
officers who often they have to work with in other investigations? >> you know, i think it is exceptionally difficult for attorneys or even local district attorneys, more generally, to hold officers criminally liable, even when they should be held. justice ier: leaving open the auestion of whether justice is really for all. >> breonna taylor! >> reporter: adriana diaz, cbs news, louisville. >> say her name! >> o'donnell: the death toll from covid continues to climb with more than 1,000 new deaths reported yesterday. the total is now well over 202,000. cases are rising in more than 30 states, and in nine of them, new cases are up more than 60% in two weeks. public health officials say with the flu season about to begin, the u.s. could soon be facing a twin-demic. here's cbs' meg oliver. >> reporter: tonight, health officials with an urgent warning: get your flu shot now. >> you do not want to be facing a covid and a flu season epidemic at the same time.
>> reporter: doctors like adnan munkarah say a surge in flu cases could overwhelm a health system already strained from the coronavirus pandemic. >> people are going to have symptoms and they are not going to know, is it covid? is it the flu? >> reporter: would you be able to handle a so-called twin-demic? >> we have learned a lot about the management of patients, management of our staff, how to handle things in the community setting. >> reporter: one supermarket retailer said its pharmacists expect a 75% surge in flu vaccinations this year. every september, sean powers and his nine-year-old twin boys get their flu shot. >> it should be a little bit better than normal, considering we're all running around in masks. >> reporter: in the southern hemisphere, lockdowns and increased vaccination rates have likely led to a mild flu season there. australia had just 33 positives out of 60,000 samples tested. >> i think when people are actually seen how ill people have gotten from covid and how sick you could get from flu, hopefully they'll be wiser.
>> reporter: vaccine makers are already starting to ship out what they estimate will be nearly 200 million doses for the season. meg oliver, cbs news, fairlawn, new jersey. >> o'donnell: we turn now to the deepening economic fallout of the pandemic. 870,000 americans filed for unemployment benefits last week. that's worse than expected. it shows layoffs are continuing at an historic rate. and many state unemployment systems are overwhelmed. we get more now from cbs' mark strassmann. >> reporter: carmen lindsey teared up within 10 minutes of talking about it. it frustrates you to feel dependent on others? >> to have to ask for help. >> reporter: and what have you had to ask for help with?" >> my bills, sometimes a meal. >> reporter: in mid-march, the event planner was laid off by a metro atlanta senior center. she got her $1,200 federal stimulus check and applied for unemployment benefits, a first
in 50 years of working. but the 69-year-old has yet to receive another nickel. >> my son has been paying my car insurance. he can't afford to do that. >> reporter: why is this emotional for you? >> i would just like to be able to pay my own bills. >> reporter: 1.6 million californians can relate. they have unresolved claims in a system so behind, it had to stop taking new applications for two weeks. and roughly 11 million americans have yet to receive any unemployment benefits. clerical issues, like a typo in a name, are a major problem. lindsey reached out to the atlanta legal aid society for help. >> and so i'm going to keep fighting until i get it. >> reporter: we called the georgia department of labor. turns out, a clerical error was also blocking her benefits. they say they're going to calculate what she's owed and send her a check in the next week. norah. >> o'donnell: mark, this is not the first time you've been able
to help someone. thank you. tonight, the top elections official in philadelphia is warning of a legal controversy, the likes of which we haven't seen since florida, and that recount in 2000. pennsylvania's supreme court says mail-in ballots can be thrown out if voters don't follow the instructions precisely, and enough of those ballots could be disqualified to change the outcome in pennsylvania, and maybe even the country. cbs' major garrett has more in our series "america decides: 2020, counting your vote." >> reporter: early voting began today in michigan, where election officials started mailing more than two million absentee ballots to voters, four times the volume of 2016. voting rules differ from state to state, and amid a pandemic, that is more true than ever, with legal fights erupting coast to coast. in wisconsin, a judge said ballots will count if they're received up to six days after election day, and postmarked by november 3. >> we're going to win pennsylvania. >> reporter: some counties in
pennsylvania have been early voting for more than a week. democratic officials, like philadelphia commissioner lisa deeley, fear first-time absentee voters won't use the state's two-envelope process properly. >> if a person doesn't use the secrecy envelope, their vote will not count. that's-- that is really-- it's a form of voter suppression. >> reporter: as deeley showed us, voters must place their absentee ballot inside the secrecy envelope, which then goes inside an outer envelope before it is signed and mailed. >> this vote does not count because you neglected to use this envelope. >> reporter: ballots missing the inner envelope are called "naked ballots." in a letter to republican state lawmakers, deeley warned that as many as 100,000 votes statewide could be invalidated because of missing privacy envelopes. >> that would be catastrophic. their vote wouldn't count. >> reporter: president trump won pennsylvania in 2016 by just over 44,000 votes.
the state has produced this video to educate voters: >> seal the ballot in the plain white official ballot envelope. >> reporter: pennsylvania's among 16 states that sends absentee voters ballots with privacy envelopes. >> to me, it's ridiculous that votes should be thrown out for a technicality when it's very clear how the voter intended to vote. >> reporter: pennsylvania republicans who, by the way, control the legislature, tell us the state supreme court has weighed in these so-called naked ballots and the law is the law. it is unlikely, they tell us, any changes will be made before november. norah. >> o'donnell: it's going to be a long couple of nights after election day. major garrett, thank you. and there's still much more news ahead on tonight's "cbs evening news." the search for answers after a deadly explosion rattles a neighborhood. later, wifi on wheels: how school buss are being deployed to help students log in for their lessons. with less eczema, you can show more skin.
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we worried over loved ones, over money, over our planet. and over take-out. and we found a voice. let's remember this time where none of us felt secure, and fight for a future where everyone can. because when the world seems like it's standing still... that's the perfect time for us to change it. but today there's a combination of two immunotherapies you can take first. one that could mean... a chance to live longer. opdivo plus yervoy is for adults newly diagnosed with non-small cell lung cancer that has spread and that tests positive for pd-l1 and does not have an abnormal egfr or alk gene. it's the first and only approved chemo-free combination of two immunotherapies that works together in different ways to harness the power of the immune system. opdivo plus yervoy equals a chance for more days. more nights. more beautiful weekends. more ugly sweaters. more big hugs. more small outings.
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killed with her family's home was blown to pieces in a fiery explosion. officials are investigating whether a propane leak caused it. the girl's parents and brothers are being treated for burns. tonight, our parent company viacomcbs has finished an investigation into an alleged incident involving c.e.o. bob bakish after a former employee claimed the 56-year-old executive touched her inappropriately during a holiday party four years ago. in a statement the company board says it takes any allegation of this type seriously, and conducted an independent review, which did not support the allegation. bakish became the c.e.o. of viacom in 2016 before it merged with the cbs corporation. les moonves, the former head of cbs, was fired in 2018 over allegations of sexual misconduct. coming up next-- why the school bus driver is even more important than ever, even with so many kids learning from home.
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including hepatitis b or c. one of the ingredients in dovato may harm your unborn baby. your doctor may prescribe a different medicine than dovato. your doctor should do a pregnancy test before starting dovato. use effective birth control while taking dovato. the most common side effects are headache, diarrhea, nausea, trouble sleeping, and tiredness. so much goes into who i am and hope to be. ask your doctor if starting hiv treatment with dovato is right for you. if you're having difficulty paying for your medications, we may be able to help. >> o'donnell: you might think with so many kids remote learning, a lot of school buses would sit idle. turns out, they're needed now more than ever. here's cbs' nikki battiste. >> reporter: this school year,
danielle mackey is doubling as a bus driver and a tech guru. >> my bus is a rolling internet. >> reporter: delivering wifi on wheels to thousands of students in michigan's wayne-westland school district. >> we have a lot of motor home complexes that don't have the connectivity. >> reporter: superintendent john dignan says at least 40% of the families in his district lack the internet needed for remote learning. these 21 mobile hot-spot buses are the district's innovative solution to the digital divide that so many school children face across the country, including danielle's. >> my kids actually started falling behind as well. now that we have the mobile hot spot, they're able to connect, stay connected. >> i'm not failing anymore because there's the internet, and it won't-- it's loading now. >> reporter: each bus parks where wifi is needed most. students can now access it from their bedrooms. what does the mobile hot spot
bus symbolize in your community? >> i think it symbolizes connection. it looks like a school bus, but it gives hope. that's the most powerful message. >> reporter: nikki battiste, cbs news, new york. >> o'donnell: and listen to this-- the school district hopes to soon have those buses deliver lunches to the students, too. we'll be right back. if you're at home thinking about your financial plan... so are we. prudential helps 1 in 7 americans with their financial needs. that's over 25 million people. with over 90 years of investment experience, our thousands of financial professionals can help with secure video chat or on the phone. we make it easy for you with online tools, e-signatures, and no-medical-exam life insurance. plan for better days. go to prudential.com or talk to an advisor.
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we'll see you right back here tomorrow morning. good night. this is if show the "cbs overnight news." i'm catherine herridge in washington. thanks for staying with us. the major airlines are threatening to furlough thousands of works next month if they don't get another multi-billion coronavirus bailout. the industry is still reeling from the effects of covid-19. fewer people are flying and many foreign countries are off limits to americans. some airlines are helping make americans feel safe on board and avoid quarantines when they
reach their destination. lufthansa is supposd to give accurate results in ten minutes for only $12. near the u.s. united airlines is set to begin its own preflight coronavirus tests. here's the story from dulles international airport. >> the day is coming when these planes taxing out with passengers who have just been tested for covid. if it can work to hawaii, united hopes it can be use odd for americans flying all over the world once again. united employee eduardo marquez is getting a test that passengers will be taking hours before departing for hawaii. >> it was simple, fast. noninvasive at all. u.s. airline to roll out something like this. bay area flyers bound for hawaii
will be given an option to reserve a time for a rapid airport for or do a test. >> this is a great access to get them back in the air and traveling as safely as possible. >> reporter: hawaii has largely been closed to tourists since march. but next month, the state will waive it's two-week quarantine. they'll verify the results as flights come in. richard flew to maui tuesday. >> a lot of extra time back to me. can also make sure i'm not getting my friend sick or anyone who is in the risk zone sick. >> reporter: the rapid test was already available to airline employees. it takes about 20 minutes to get results and will cost about $250. the at home test will give re