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New Texas Poll; Witness Talks about Jim Jordan in the Ohio State Case; Coronavirus Cases Continue to Increase; CDC Prepares for Coronavirus; Astros Apologize for Scandal. Trump Takes Aim at Bloomberg. Aired 6:30-7a ET

Aired February 14, 2020 - 06:30   ET



JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: The poll from the "Texas Tribune." Why is this important? Texas is a Super Tuesday state where Cristina will tell us that Michael Bloomberg has spent a fortune.

Look at this poll from Texas. This is a primary poll. Bernie Sanders now leading in this Texas poll.

And what's really interesting is this poll was taken between January 31st and February 9th, before Bernie Sanders won New Hampshire. So when you talk about polls, the important thing is trends here. You can see, Bernie Sanders, the trend for him is up, up, up, up. Even in states where you might not think he would be trending up and even states, Cristina, where Michael Bloomberg is spending a fortune.

CRISTINA ALESCI, CNN BUSINESS AND POLITICS CORRESPONDENT: A fortune. And he has a lot of ground game in Texas.

And, remember, this isn't necessarily new for Michael Bloomberg. Michael Bloomberg has made a lot of stops in Texas, particularly in Houston. He has a great relationship with the mayor there. His philanthropic organization has given money in past years to the city.

What's remarkable here, and you say that this is bad news for Michael Bloomberg that Bernie's up, but it's also good news for Michael Bloomberg that Bernie's up because if he's going to take on a Democrat, that is the Democrat he wants to take on because those are the most, you know, ideologically or politically, you know, at opposite ends of the spectrum. If he goes up against a Joe Biden, that's probably the worst case scenario for Bloomberg.

But to your point, at this point, he spent a lot of money in Texas. He's got -- he's got people on the ground there already. He's got to pull it through in Texas. And that's part of their Super Tuesday strategy for sure.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Cristina, Jen, thank you both very much for all the reporting and the insight.

Now to this.

The sexual abuse scandal at Ohio State University is putting a spotlight on a key Republican in Congress.


ADAM DISABATO, BROTHER ACCUSED OHIO STATE DOCTOR OF SEXUAL ABUSE: Jim Jordan called me crying, crying, groveling.


CAMEROTA: All right, what that former wrestling captain says Congressman Jim Jordan asked him to do.



CAMEROTA: A former Ohio State University wrestler claims that Congressman Jim Jordan begged him to deny an account of sexual assault perpetrated by the team's doctor. Jordan was an assistant wrestling coach at OSU during the time of the sex abuse allegations.

CNN's Polo Sandoval is here with the emotional testimony yesterday.

Polo, what did he say?

POLO SANDOVAL CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Alisyn, Congressman Jordan's spokesperson calls these latest allegations another lie. You recall that he has previously and repeatedly denied accusations that he was aware of any sexual abuse that happened during his tenure at Ohio State University back when he was an assistant wrestling coach. And this week Adam DiSabato told lawmakers Jordan begged him to contradict his own brother's story. Mike, DiSabato's brother, actually blew the whistle on the sex abuse at the university.

I want you to hear some of what he told lawmakers as they were considering a bill that would allow sex abuse victims to sue the university.


ADAM DISABATO, BROTHER ACCUSED OHIO STATE DOCTOR OF SEXUAL ABUSE: Jim Jordan called me crying, crying, groveling, on the Fourth of July, begging me to go against my brother. Begging me. Crying for half hour. That's the kind of cover-ups that's go -- that's going on there.


SANDOVAL: Yes, listen to the entire testimony here. And DiSabato also testifying that while he was a captain on the university wrestler's team he reported that -- he reported the abuse not just to Jordan but other university officials who, in his testimony, describing as continuing to turn a blind eye.

More of what Jordan's spokesperson has to say about these latest allegations, writing, Congressman Jordan never saw or heard of any abuse and if you -- and had he, he would have dealt with it. Congressman Jordan would never ask anyone to do anything but tell the truth.

You recall the Ohio congressman recently hailed as a shining star by President Trump for his work on the House Judiciary Committee during impeachment proceedings.

John and Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: Polo, thank you very much for all of that background.

And coming up in our next hour, we will speak with Adam DiSabato about his testimony yesterday and his claims about Congressman Jim Jordan.

BERMAN: All right, new, concerning numbers in the coronavirus outbreak. That's next.



BERMAN: Every time China releases new numbers on the coronavirus outbreak, there are new questions and new reason for concern. And this morning, China now says that more than 1,700 medical workers on the front lines of this outbreak have become infected themselves. Six of them have died.

CNN's David Culver is live in Beijing.

And as I said, David, we keep getting these new figures that do raising questions.

DAVID CULVER, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: And it's so disturbing, John. And we should point out, this is something that CNN began reporting on early in this. And since leaving Wuhan really before the lockdown, my team and I here in Beijing, we've been in touch with doctors and nurses and they have described to us the dire need for supplies. We're talking the protective equipment, like the hazmat suits. You have face masks, goggles, basic things, really. One nurse telling us at the time that it felt like she was going into battle without any armor.

Early on, images like this one we can show you here, they were portrayed even in state media. They showed doctors and nurses resorting to making that protective equipment out of trash bags. They feared that there would be casualties.

Well, today's numbers are reflecting just that. Health officials here in China say 1,716 medical workers have contracted the novel (ph) coronavirus. Six of them, as you have pointed out, has died -- have died. And CNN, we did connect by phone with Dr. Li Wenliang, who is one of the early whistleblowers who, you might recall, was silenced by local police. Eventually, China's supreme court essentially vindicated him. But a week after we were in touch with him, he died from the virus. So he's among that count.

I should point out that Chinese health officials have essentially resorted to things like hazard pay for some of these medical workers. It's somewhat of an incentive, offering them up to basically what equates to $42 U.S. a day as a subsidy.

More importantly, though, the central government has mobilized to expedite supplies to the front line. Alisyn, we're hearing the supplies are finally getting there. But the thing is, the numbers reflect that for so many they're arriving too late.

CAMEROTA: We're going to be asking the secretary of Health and Human Services about all of that stuff and the U.S. response.

David, thank you very much.

The CDC is warning that the coronavirus is not going away anytime soon. They say it could linger into next year.

CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins us now.

And, Sanjay, I know that you had this rare opportunity to speak with the director of the CDC.

What did you learn?

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, we were in the emergency operations center, which they've activated for this outbreak.

There's a couple things that really struck me. First of all, some of the policies that are going into place right now in the United States around this outbreak are strategies that haven't been employed in some 50 years in this country. So that gives you an idea of the seriousness with which they're taking this.

But I think one of the things that really also struck me was the idea that we still don't have clear vision exactly on what's happening where David is in China. The CDC's been wanting to go in there for some time. And I think it's been a huge source of frustration for them.




You know, this is going to, you know, obviously be a significant investment.

GUPTA (voice over): On the same day the CDC confirmed the 15th U.S. coronavirus case, I went inside the agency's emergency operation center with Director Dr. Robert Redfield.

GUPTA (on camera): How good is the public health infrastructure at reporting in?

GUPTA (on camera): To give you an idea of how rapidly the situation is changing. GUPTA (on camera): By the way, the numbers changed, I can tell you


REDFIELD: Fifteen.

GUPTA: It's actually 15 there.

GUPTA (voice over): It's a lot to keep up with.

GUPTA (on camera): What is the worst case scenario here in the United States?

REDFIELD: So far we've been able to contain it. But I think this virus is probably with us beyond this season or beyond this year. And I think eventually the virus will find a foothold and we will get community-based transmission. And you can start to think of it in a sense like seasonal flu. And the only difference is we don't understand this virus.

GUPTA (voice over): Which is exactly why the CDC wants to be on the ground in China. It's probably Redfield's biggest frustration.

REDFIELD: Right now there's no evidence to me that this outbreak is at all under control. It's definitely not controlled. And the sooner we can help them get it under control, the better for the whole world.

GUPTA (on camera): So I guess that does raise the questions, why are we sitting here in Atlanta talking about this versus the CDC being in China collecting some of this data?

REDFIELD: I don't think it's a medical decision that we're not being invited in.

GUPTA: What do you think it is?

REDFIELD: Well, I think it's above the medical --

GUPTA: You think it's a political decision?

REDFIELD: I think it's above the medical. I don't think the director of the CDC is making that decision.

GUPTA: You think it's a political decision?

REDFIELD: Well I think it's -- all I can say is, I think it's above the director of CDC, because I know he would love to have us assist them.

GUPTA (voice over): China has accepted help from the World Health Organization. The CDC is waiting to hear whether it's going to be a part of that team.

In the meantime, Redfield says his priority is to keep Americans safe.

REDFIELD: Our whole issue right now is, as I said, aggressive containment to try to give us more time. But it's going to take, you know, one to two years to get that probably developed and out, to prepare to -- the health systems to be able to be flexible enough to deal with the potential second major cause of respiratory illness.


CAMEROTA: So that was really interesting, Sanjay. Now that you've spoken to him, what is your biggest fear this morning?

GUPTA: Well, you know, I think that it's a little bit like a black box right now in China from the CDC's perspective. They're only looking at this from the inputs and the outputs. They don't really have a good sense of the internal workings of what's happening there in China with regard to this outbreak.

I mean this has been going on for a couple of months. And, look, you know, there's a lot of data coming out, but we also know that some of the most crucial, important data, that first data, Alisyn, was not exactly what it -- was not exactly representative of what was happening with this outbreak. The outbreak started much sooner than we were first led to believe. There was evidence of human-to-human transmission much sooner then we were originally lead to believe. And some of those early patient who were infected may not have even been in touch with that particular animal market that we heard so much about.

So time matters here. Days and weeks matter here. And days and weeks are lost. So I think that that's -- that's the biggest concern, can we trust exactly what we're hearing still out of China?

CAMEROTA: Sanjay, I also know that there's some confusion -- and you've been looking at this -- can patients spread the virus before they show any symptoms?

GUPTA: Yes, they can. And I asked Dr. Redfield about this very carefully. They've been looking at a lot of these cases and trying to understand the transmission. But I -- we really drilled down on this yesterday, Alisyn, because it's such an important point that someone who does not -- who's not sick, does not have any symptoms, can still spread this.

Now, just to be clear, it's a lot less likely to spread when someone is asymptomatic. And what Dr. Redfield believes is that it won't be a huge driver of increased numbers. But it can happen. And because it can happen, that changes exactly how you approach this. The quarantine, the length of quarantine, and who specifically in terms of patients you're targeting.

CAMEROTA: Sanjay, thank you very much for bringing us all of the latest information that you gathered in the field. We'll talk again soon.

GUPTA: You got it. Thank you.

BERMAN: Oh, so this morning for the first time the Houston Astros are addressing the sign stealing scandal. And the words they chose to do so, not sitting well. CAMEROTA: But first, the world has watched their every move, and now

CNN presents the story of the world's most famous royal family. "The Windsors: Inside the Royal Dynasty" premieres this Sunday at 10:00 p.m. on CNN.


QUEEN ELIZABETH: We are present at the making of history.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Twenty-seven million people watched this ceremony.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I know that I'm in love with this girl and I hope that she's in love with me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The public totally in love with this ideal couple. And yet the public can't see everything.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Edward leaves and it throws the monarchy into chaos.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Throughout much of Diana's marriage to Charles, there was a third figure hovering around.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She called herself the queen of hearts, which really stuck a knife in the queen.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This was a woman of color who married into the royal family and within two years of the marriage, she wants out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There is this terrible balance that they've got to strike between being extraordinary and being ordinary.




BERMAN: So the players on the Houston Astros offered an apology kind of for the sign stealing scandal that tainted their 2017 World Series title.

Carolyn Manno has more in the "Bleacher Report."



There is no room for hubris in a scandal like this. But tell that to ownership. I think they decided to go a different way.

Houston kicking off spring training with a news conference addressing the elephant in the room, an attempt at damage control that by most accounts rung very hollow.


ALEX BREGMAN, HOUSTON ASTROS THIRD BASEMAN: I am really sorry about the choices that were made by my team, by the organization, and by me. I have learned from this and I hope to regain the trust of baseball fans.

JOSE ALTUVE, HOUSTON ASTROS SECOND BASEMAN: The whole Astros organization and the team feel bad about what happened in 2017.


MANNO: Stunningly, as Astros owner Jim Crane attempted an apology, he also deflected one of the most pointed questions.


QUESTION: May I ask, is it cheating?


QUESTION: Do you use the word cheating? Was this cheating?

CRANE: We broke the rules. And you can phrase that any way you want.


MANNO: The Astros fired manager A.J. Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow over this scandal. No players were punished.

And President Trump will give the command for drivers to start their engines before this Sunday's Daytona 500. Trump will be the grand marshal for Nascar's season opener.

Presidents have visited Daytona International Speedway for memorable races in the past. George W. Bush attended the Daytona 500 as president back in 2004.

Trump, though, is the first sitting president to be given an honorary role in pre-race ceremonies. So this is different. This is something that's normally reserved for celebrities. This time around it will be President Trump. And he'll have a very warm welcome there.

BERMAN: No doubt.

All right, Carolyn, thanks very much.

CAMEROTA: All right, thank you, Carolyn.

So President Trump and Michael Bloomberg have been trading insults. Much of it has to do with their height. CNN's Jeanne Moos looks at how both measure up.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): There is nothing mini about the height war.


MOOS: In a matter of minutes, President Trump called Michael Bloomberg, mini Mike, said he reminds him of a tiny version of Jeb "low energy" Bush, suggested no boxes, please, as in no box for Bloomberg to stand on at debates.

Reporters read the tweet storm from their phones.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mini Mike is a 5'4" inch mass of dead energy.

MOOS: Never mind that Mike Bloomberg is actually around 5'7." The White House even shared a Photoshopped image of Bloomberg made to look extra petite.

But there was nothing petite about Bloomberg's response. A carnival barking clown, Bloomberg said people call the president.

MICHAEL BLOOMBERG (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Donald, where I come from, we measure your height from your neck up.

MOOS (on camera): We measure your height from your neck up? Is Bloomberg comparing brains?

MOOS (voice over): On a more cerebral note, the Bloomberg campaign tweeted a quote from "Gladiator."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The time for honoring yourself will soon be at an end.

MOOS: President Trump has been dishonoring his opponents this way for ages.

TRUMP: Little rocket man.

Little Marco.

And little Marco.

Don't worry about it, little Marco.

MOOS: But when he called Senator Joe Manchin munchkin --

SEN. JOE MANCHIN (D-WV): I guess he's confused on that because I am a little bigger than him. He's got me about 30 pounds on weight.

MOOS: Ever since Sean Hannity played word association with the president --

SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS: Michael Bloomberg.

TRUMP: Very little. I just think of little.

MOOS: Partisans on both sides have been churning out memes, shrinking the other guy, or his hands. "The Washington Post" noted, since 1952, when the age of television began, 12 of the 17 presidential contests have been won by the taller person.

TRUMP: There is nobody I'd rather run against than little Michael.

MOOS: But as one anchor noted --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mike Bloomberg, same height at Vladimir Putin.

MOOS: And you don't hear President Trump calling him little Vlad.

Jeanne Moos, CNN --

TRUMP: Little Michael.

BLOOMBERG: We measure your height from your neck up.

MOOS: New York.


BERMAN: Look, a fact that the discussion is a win for the president. The president says it and then people talk about it. That's exactly what he wants.

CAMEROTA: I guess if voters vote on height.

BERMAN: Yes, I'm not saying they do, but he -- but the president take -- will take great glee in the fact that people are even talking about it and replay it.

CAMEROTA: Maybe they should each stand on their wallets and see who's taller.

BERMAN: No doubt. That would be good. Although credit cards I don't think take up that much space.

CAMEROTA: Meanwhile, Attorney General Bill Barr taking on President Trump and his tweets.

NEW DAY continues right now.


WILLIAM BARR, ATTORNEY GENERAL: I have made a decision that I thought was fair and reasonable. Once the tweet occurred, the question is, well, now what do I do?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If they had spent any time with this attorney general, he has the highest character I've ever been around. He is very independent.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is an attorney general who thinks --