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Trump Tests Negative For Coronavirus; France, Spain, Italy On Lockdown To Prevent Virus Spread; 2,800-Plus Coronavirus Cases, With 58 Dead In The U.S.; Coronavirus Death Toll Hits 40 In Washington State; Trump On Coronavirus: From Hoax To National Emergency; Trump Falsely Claims Google Is Coordinating Virus Testing; Life During A Pandemic. Aired 9-10p ET
Aired March 14, 2020 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN HOST: By far the hardest hit country in Europe with more than 20,000 confirmed cases of the illness. They have all but banned -- rather they have banned all but necessary travel. And inspire of it, Italians are showing their solidarity in song.
You are live in the CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Boris Sanchez in New York. Thank you so much for joining us on this Saturday night.
It is our breaking news this hour on CNN. President Trump tested by White House doctors for the deadly coronavirus. That test negative. A relief. We've only just learned this afternoon that the president was even tested. He told reporters at a White House press briefing Trump had short but nonetheless significant contact with at least two people know who this week were confirmed to be infected with the virus.
The official word coming from the president's personal physician when we go live to the White House in just a moment. But we want to update you on the numbers. Take a look. Nearly 2800 people in the United States not as fortunate as the president tonight. That is the current and quickly rising number of people who have tested positive for coronavirus. 57 people so far are dead.
This just in to CNN. The leaders of Teaneck, New Jersey, asking everyone in the township, everyone, to self-quarantine. 25 people are infected in Burgeon County where Teaneck is located. That number more than doubled overnight.
This public health emergency prompting the governor of Georgia to activate 2,000 National Guard troops. They're going to help people in quarantine return to their homes and to move medical equipment where it's needed as well.
Also today the Georgia presidential primary put on hold for at least two months. Election officials say it's to ensure the safety of voters and people who work at the polls.
Overseas right now, there are some surreal images of nobody, nobody visiting the tourist sites of Rome. No one in the streets and restaurants of Madrid. Cafes and nightclubs in Paris are also closed. France, Spain, and Italy in total lockdown. People ordered to stay
home except when absolutely necessary.
Let's get over to the White House right now. CNN's Kristen Holmes is there with this news that President Trump fortunately has tested negative for the coronavirus.
Kristen, what are you learning?
KRISTEN HOLMES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Boris, that's right. You know, you mentioned this, that we had no idea President Trump was taking the test. We'd asked multiple times if he would because of this extended contact with not only people who later tested positive for coronavirus but with lawmakers who also had extended contact with people who then later tested positive for coronavirus and were really blown off by the president on multiple times, asking this question.
He said he didn't need to, he didn't have any symptoms. Now yesterday, he kind of waffled, he went back and said he would probably take the test. But there was still no real clear indication. Well, today he said he took the test. And this is the note that we just received, just a little bit ago from the White House doctor. And it says essentially, "Last night after an in-depth discussion with the president regarding COVID-19 testing, he elected to proceed. This evening, I received confirmation that the test is negative."
And you have to remember this is coming at a time when there were serious questions as to whether or not the president was taking this virus seriously and whether or not there were proper safety protocols in place to protect the president and the vice president. Remember, we've asked President Trump on multiple occasions, are you going to stop having those rallies, he said no.
Now of course, they have since canceled them. But we asked if he was going to change any of his own habits, was he going to stop shaking hands. He said, no, that's just part of his daily life. And we saw him yesterday on national TV shaking almost every health official's hand, despite the fact that those same officials were the ones who were saying do not shake hands, practice social distancing.
But President Trump here clearly turning over a new page. Seems to be taking very seriously. Want you to hear what he said now about shaking hands and talking and being close to people.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: People come up to me, they shake hands, they put their hand out. It's sort of a natural reflex. And we're all getting out of it. All of us have that problem. Somebody comes up to you, they put their hand out, you probably tend to shake it. And we're all getting out of that.
Shaking hands is not a great thing to be doing right now, I agree. But people put their hand out, sometimes I'll put the hand out. You don't think about it. People are thinking about it more and more. We have to think about it. It's important. But no, we all have to get away -- I mean, getting away from shaking hands is a good thing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: And you know, it wasn't just the shaking hands that he talked about, actually all the members of the press corps, everyone in the task force, had their temperature taken before we had any proximity to the president or the vice president.
There was one reporter who was actually turned away because his temperature was too high. So clearly here they're really upping the ante, putting into practice some new protocols to keep President Trump safe -- Boris.
SANCHEZ: All right, Kristen Holmes from the White House. Thanks for that.
Stay home and don't leave unless it's absolutely necessary. That's the order from Spanish and French officials as both countries work fast to contain the explosive coronavirus outbreak. In France almost everything is closed including the Eiffel Tower, restaurants, cafes, cinemas and clubs. Only essential places are open like supermarkets, pharmacies, gas stations, and banks.
In Spain, the number of coronavirus cases jumped by 1500 overnight. It brings the total number of people confirmed with the illness there to over 6,000. You can only imagine how hard doctors, nurses, and hospitals have been working to keep up with that load. Today in honor of them, a rare and powerful ovation to thank and support them. Watch this.
And people across Spain taking to their windows to cheer on those who are putting everything on the line to protect others.
Joining us now from Madrid is Al Goodman.
Al, people in Spain are banned from leaving their houses with very few exceptions. How is that being received on the ground? How are people responding to that?
AL GOODMAN, CNN MADRID CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Boris. Well, let's start with the very latest in Spain. The wife of Spain's prime minister has tested positive for coronavirus. This coming just a few hours after the prime minister himself made a nationwide address to explain the details of this state of emergencies that's been imposed by the government on this nation.
We were out in the streets earlier this day, here's a look at what people had to say.
GOODMAN (voice-over): This is what Spain's coronavirus state of emergency looks like in Madrid. A city of 6.6 million people told to stay home. Like the whole nation. (On camera): With the restrictions, the capital is like a ghost town.
This gourmet food market which would normally be packed is closed like all the other bars and restaurants in town. But it does make it easy to get one of these tourist tuck tucks.
(Voice-over): Spain suddenly has the second highest number of infections in Europe after Italy. And Madrid is the hardest hit, with more than half of Spain's cases and fatalities.
Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez wants to slow down the pace of new infections that officials say could overwhelm hospitals. Under the state of emergency starting late Saturday, the government banned people from leaving their homes except for a few essential activities. They can still go to food stores and pharmacies, but they have to go alone. People can go to work, but driving must be only for essential activities, not for leisure.
This man out shopping for food is a medical doctor and a cancer specialist. "I am reasonably concerned," he says, "but also reasonably optimistic that this situation could be controlled more quickly than what's being predicted."
This butcher says clients are buying extra meat just in case, and there are still supplies for now.
"As quickly as we open, we might have to close," he says. "The government says it will get worse. Many people don't know how this will play out."
This couple just arrived from Britain for a birthday celebration weekend. Now they're out searching for food.
KEVIN MEEHAN, BRITISH TOURIST: I think the virus is spreading, and all cities are going to be getting worse maybe on lockdown sooner than we think.
WENDY MEEHAN, BRITISH TOURIST: I think it will be the same all over Europe very quickly.
GOODMAN: But the Spanish prime minister says not so fast. It will take weeks he says, but Spaniards working together will stop the virus.
GOODMAN: The prime minister addressing the nation on Friday about this, Boris, said that the number of cases could rise to over 10,000 just in the coming week.
Back to you.
SANCHEZ: Al Goodman reporting from Madrid, thank you so much.
We do have some experts to chat with. I want to bring in former assistant secretary at the Department of Homeland Security, Juliette Kayyem, and Dr. Anne Rimoin, she's an infectious disease expert and virus hunter. We just got an update on coronavirus figures a moment ago. It is now
58 dead, 2816 cases in the United States. It's likely much more than that. But there's been a lack of testing so that number no question is going to continue to rise.
Doctor, I want to begin with you. You've seen the scenes in Paris, in Madrid. Is it time for the United States to approach a similar lockdown as a more serious option to consider?
ANNE RIMOIN, EPIDEMIOLOGIST AND INFECTIOUS DISEASE EXPERT: I think that we all have to take this very, very seriously. And if the American people aren't going to take it seriously, then we have to be helping them to move towards this very, very serious social distancing. People need to really stay at home, stay in small -- stay away from large groups, and to avoid being in places where virus can spread.
And unfortunately what we've seen is large playdates, lots of people going out to restaurants, lots of people out in bars. These are all of the scenarios that we want to try to avoid. People really need to take responsibility if they can, stay home because that's for the common good. It's good for everybody. And we have to not just think about ourselves. And I think that this is one of the issues that we really are having trouble communicating which is it's true that children, young adults may not have the same kind of serious outcomes as we are worried about for older people.
But there are still able to pass the virus. And in fact many of the young people in their 20s and 30s do have serious disease. So this isn't something to take lightly. Everybody needs to take it seriously.
SANCHEZ: Juliette, we keep talking about where other countries are heading very quickly with near or total lockdowns. I have a hard time imagining that something like that could be installed in the United States. How do you even enforce people staying in their homes but anything for essential travel?
JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: I mean, you have mechanisms of the state to do so. We don't want to get there certainly. But you obviously have law enforcement mechanisms. I think the way to conceive of it in the United States is there will be broad shutdowns, so, you know, airport travel, anything that's regulated by the federal government, say rail travel, even interstate highways if it comes to that. I don't think it will but those are the options that we played through in the past.
And then what you might see is very localized, the equivalents of a quarantine or a lockdown under either local rules or generally state rules. It's -- governors have tremendous powers when it comes this. And so it's just important to -- you know, they have an authority to either isolate an area or contain it. We don't want to get to that station. As the doctor was saying, you know, I don't get what's going on. I get these texts from my girlfriends like we're having a playdate. I
don't know what else to say but even from the homeland security perspective, you know, we're in for the long haul and you are home. That's what it means. And except for limited, limited engagements or walks or whatever else.
SANCHEZ: Yes. And Juliette, staying with you, we just saw Georgia authorize the call-up of as many as 2,000 National Guard troops.
SANCHEZ: To help some of those aboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship. It's not lost on anybody that those troops, those guard members and ones in other states could soon be asked.
SANCHEZ: To help keep the peace elsewhere.
KAYYEM: That's exactly right. So to be clear, they're not being asked to keep the peace. There's a complicated series of laws. And they are serving under the governor as the state -- under the state guard. We've had plans for this. So people should not get too anxious. Whenever state capacity gets limited and sort of everyone sort of stretched, you want the guard to serve, to support in things like traffic control, crowd control, supply chain.
Now that's the state side. The federal government has a large military, as well, which also has worked with civilian authorities to provide assets and manpower, womanpower to be able to do things like what if we need tent hospitals, what if we need triage centers that need to be built very quickly. So I think people just need -- it's different. I recognize that. But this is stuff that's been practiced and trained, pursuant to the laws that protect us and protect our rights.
And so it's different, but it's actually something that we envisioned because we knew in a pandemic state and locals would be overwhelmed relatively quickly as we're seeing.
SANCHEZ: Yes. As we're seeing just a few miles from here in New Rochelle.
SANCHEZ: Doctor, President Trump is expanding the coronavirus travel ban. It starts on Monday night. You can't fly here from the United Kingdom or Ireland unless you're an American. But germs, they don't really know any boundary or citizenship. Is this too little too late? The virus is already here. So how does this make us safer?
RIMOIN: Well, the cat is out of the bag, genie's out of the bottle. Here we are. We have the virus spreading in this country right now. So a travel ban is really not going to be all that effective at this point. It's like having a strainer. It -- you know, it might take out some of the larger chunks, but you're really not going to be getting any of the finer pieces.
And truly at this point, I think we need to be focusing on things like social distancing, making sure that the people who are here or coming here that are staying in -- away from small groups, no large gatherings, all the things we keep saying. I think the travel ban is a little bit too little, too late at this point.
SANCHEZ: Yes. Juliette, we keep going back to Rudy Gobert. Right? This NBA player, who tested positive for coronavirus. Within a few hours, the entire NBA season was suspended.
SANCHEZ: I'm wondering from you, what if a police officer tests positive in major city and an entire department is then forced into quarantine? Who is then in charge of protecting people?
KAYYEM: So this is -- I mean, once again, it's no solace but the potential loss of a work force in terms of public safety and public health has been envisioned. So obviously we want to protect our first responders. But the idea that it might be all hands on deck in either public health or public safety I think is not true. Some of them in particular will get sick, as we know. Many of them have kids, and if the kids are home, and also we've seen in the past in other disasters some of them won't show up. It's a small percentage.
And so what we see going on now I think is a very, very serious -- especially police departments focus on two things on -- sort of work force health, making sure people are healthy and that they are taking their temperatures. And secondly, and this goes back to us, don't bother them right now. In other words, another point of social distancing is take the burden off of public safety and public health.
Don't get in your car, don't get on a bike, don't do all the things that often cause first responders to have to respond. And let them focus for a couple of weeks. I mean, this is why it was important to cancel these big, you know, like the marathon here or a concert. Those are big burdens on public safety and public health, as well. So we have it in us to also make sure that they're ready to protect us and sort of just stay put.
SANCHEZ: Yes. Still plenty more questions to answer. Unfortunately, that's all we have time for.
Juliette Kayyem, Dr. Anne Rimoin, thank you so much. We appreciate it. Have a good Saturday night.
KAYYEM: Thank you.
SANCHEZ: Of course.
Coming up, Washington state reporting three new deaths along with more than 600 total cases. We'll take a closer look at the nursing home now at the center of the outbreak there. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
SANCHEZ: Take a look at this. This is a picture, massive lines for a CDC coronavirus screening at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport. One woman, Katherine Rogers, telling CNN she's been in line since 4:30 p.m. local time after she landed in Chicago from Paris. When she eventually gets to her screening, apparently it's going to entail a temperature check, questions about coronavirus symptoms, and a form about her past travel in the last 14 days.
She tells us that airport workers have been handing out water and snacks to passengers there in what is obviously a very tedious and frightening time.
The death toll from the coronavirus in Washington state, meantime, has jumped to 40 after health officials reported three new fatalities just today. Two of those latest deaths are from the nursing home that's been at the epicenter of the outbreak across the state. Right now 642 cases have been confirmed.
CNN's Ryan Young joins us from Seattle.
Ryan, what's the situation like where you are? Are people heeding these warnings?
RYAN YOUNG, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Boris, good to talk to you. You can understand with the numbers that we have here, it's quite different than everywhere else. When you hear those numbers, especially when you think about 40 people have died from this virus, when you are walking around town, it's what everyone is talking about. And the impact is wide ranging. We're seeing it all over the place.
If a business is open, people are talking about it. You see workers wiping down surfaces all over the place, trying to keep it clean. But then you also hear stories of spread throughout the community, whether it be a mall worker or someone who's a student who's also caught it. This is starting to terrify some of the people here. Others, though, are trying to go on about their day.
Now we've been driving through some of the centers throughout town today and we've seen, of course, less people. But then there's also the kind of the bumping that he will still want to do because they want to get out. In fact, listen to this one business owner talking about the impact it's had on his business.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID JONES, OWNER, COPY SPOT: It can be pretty scary. We don't know where we're going to be in 30 days, 60 days. I've heard it's a lot worse than people actually are saying, the government's saying. So that can be a little bit intimidating.
(END VIDEO CLIP) YOUNG: Boris, when you think about the Life Care Center where those employees were there with all those sick people, the employees have been tested, 95 of them, 47 of them have now been tested positive for the COVID. And so you know people are sort of worried about the situation throughout the area. On top of that, school's been closed for six weeks. They're going to be setting up food banks for these students over the next few days to make sure they get fed, as well, because there's also that ripple effect throughout the area.
There's also been shut down, no gatherings of more than 250 people. So when you see all these conversations happening across the country about what could happen next, you're really seeing the impact here in this major American city where people are concerned. A lot of folks going around with masks, a lot of the transportation buses that are going by us are empty.
And the great places around here for tourism have also been pretty much shelter in place because we've seen one or two folks trying to get out to enjoy the day here, but that really has slowed down to a crawl throughout this afternoon.
SANCHEZ: Yes, so important for our viewers to keep in mind that what we're seeing now in Washington state we're going to see inevitably in other places.
Ryan Young, thank you for your perspective from on the ground there in Seattle.
Some more news to bring you. The chairwoman of the Republican National Committee is self-quarantining at home tonight as she awaits results of a coronavirus test. Rana McDaniel's spokesman says McDaniel was tested after experiencing flulike symptoms, though she tested negative for the flu. McDaniel met with President Trump in Orlando on Monday. Out of an abundance of caution, the RNC says it will be reaching out to everyone that McDaniel came into contact with in recent days.
Up next, in a national crisis, Americans turn to their president to lead them through a tumultuous time. President Harry Truman's motto was the buck stops here. But President Trump's --
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: No, I don't take responsibility at all.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: You may have caught this, the president was soaking in the praise at the Rose Garden for his leadership during the global pandemic.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Thank you, Mr. President. It is -- this day should be an inspiration to every American because thanks to your leadership from early on, not only are we bringing a whole of government approach to confronting the coronavirus, we're bringing an all of America approach.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: We have to reflect on those comments from Vice President Mike Pence and that kind of leadership that he's talking about, especially considering the president's own words on coronavirus over the last few weeks.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Democrats are politicizing the coronavirus. One of my people came up to me and said, Mr. President, they tried to beat you on Russia, Russia, Russia. That didn't work out too well. They tried the impeachment hoax. And this is their new hoax.
I like this stuff, I really get it. People are surprised that I understand it. Every one of these doctors said, how do you know so much about this? Maybe I have a natural ability. Maybe I should have done that instead of running for president.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: The kind of leadership Trump was accepting praise for would have presumably led to a focus on testing kits. There's a shortage of them now. Instead of talking about a Democrat hoax. But the U.S. is still fighting a dangerous uphill battle to find out the scope of that problem.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: The system does not -- is not really geared to what we need right now. What you are asking for. That is a failing.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And a failing. Yes.
FAUCI: It is a failing. Let's admit it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: A failing. Let's admit it. We don't have enough tests. And simply saying that something is true doesn't make it so. It's not just coming from Democrats or the media, you can ask a staunch defender of the president, Senator James Lankford. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Anybody that wants a test can get a test. SEN. JAMES LANKFORD (R-OK): No, it's not consistent right now. That's
obviously the goal, was to be able to get testing for everybody who wants testing, to be able to get it and to be able to get it in multiple locations. But that's not accurate right now.
MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Do you think he should he stop saying that?
LANKFORD: Yes. People should not say if you want a test you can go get a test right now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: While the president is quick to accept credit for what appears to be like a solution, like that national rollout of a Google Web site that Google never agreed to. Don't ask him to take the blame that most still can't get tested in this country.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Dr. Fauci said earlier this week that the lag in testing was, in fact, failing. Do you take responsibility for that? And when can you guarantee that every single American who needs a test will be able to have a test? What's the date of that?
TRUMP: Yes, no, I don't take responsibility at all.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: Remember that famous sign that President Harry Truman kept on his desk? "The buck stops here." Apparently it's no longer in the Oval Office. But not to worry.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Throughout this process, Mr. President, you've put the health of America first.
SANCHEZ: Yes. Outside of calling the response to coronavirus a hoax when it resulted in a pandemic, assuring everyone could get tested when they clearly and still cannot, and announcing a national scale Web site in a partnership with Google that does not exist, the president has you covered.
I want to bring in CNN Presidential Historian, Tim Naftali. Tim, we're in a national crisis right now. A lot of people at this point, and in different times in history, at this point in a crisis they turn to the president for leadership. When he says things that aren't true, it strains credibility, and it hurts the public, does it not?
TIM NAFTALI, CNN PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN: I think it's -- it's a time we thought of this as a war. And we're going to war against a virus. And imagine what kind of credibility and reassurance you want from your commander-in-chief when you're in a war, when it's wartime. It's so important for the president to establish trust because people are going to die. We don't know how many, but already we're seeing every day people are dying.
The president needs to understand that at moments like this he is our principal source of inspiration and reassurance and information traditionally. If he violates that covenant, that agreement with the American people, it only increases panic. That's why -- you know, this is a presidential moment. Presidents have lots of responsibilities. But their greatest responsibility comes at a moment of national peril. And we are in such a moment. And the president is failing.
SANCHEZ: I'm curious because you mentioned those moments that we've alluded to. Who do you think in history the president can learn from at a time like this? Who can he draw inspiration, guidance from historically?
NAFTALI: Franklin Roosevelt. You know, when Franklin Roosevelt heard the new deal, it was quite different from the new deal that would become later on. Franklin Roosevelt was at heart a pragmatist. But what he understood from the get-go was what the American people needed was reassurance in their institutions and also in themselves. And so even though he hadn't figured out completely what to do about the economic crisis that he inherited, he knew that above all Americans needed reassurance.
That's why presidents try -- they're not supposed to stumble over their speeches. They're not supposed to spread information which later proves to be false. And they're not supposed to spread false hopes. They can talk about winning ultimately and be optimistic about the future. But they have to be clear to the American people that between now and that future we are in for tough, tough times. And it could get worse. That's necessary from a president.
This president is uncomfortable because he's so defensive. He doesn't want to admit error by anyone including himself. And that kind of attitude is self-defeating when we're in the middle a national crisis as we are right now.
SANCHEZ: Now I'm curious about previous examples perhaps in history where a president, an administration was caught flat footed responding to something the way that this administration clearly has been.
Has there been an example in history where early on there may have been an underestimating of how big a calamity, how big a crisis was on their hands, but yet they still came through and were able to avoid disaster?
NAFTALI: Well, one of my favorite examples of that is the Cuban missile crisis, where the president, President John F. Kennedy, was quite convinced that the Soviets would under no circumstances put missiles in Cuba and then drew a line to make clear to the Soviets that under no circumstance would he accept or countenance the placement of official of offensive nuclear weapons on the island of Cuba, or weapons.
But he did that thinking they would never do it. And then they crossed that line, and he was faced with a horrific problem. And we came very close -- well, we certainly danced on the threshold of nuclear war. He was caught flat footed by that particular crisis.
There have been other examples. In Korea, Harry Truman did not fully control what was going on in Korea, allowed the commander-in-chief to go far too close to the border with China. There had been indications the Chinese might respond by invading, and they did. So there -- American presidents have made mistakes.
But here's the key. What you want is a president who can say, A, the situation has changed, this is what we're going to do. And B, can say so with not only confidence but the trust of the American people. If a president sets a tradition of lying, there's no political capital for them to draw on when the country's truly in a crisis. That is the predicament that President Kennedy never faced but President Trump faces today.
SANCHEZ: We also have to talk about the way that people have responded on the street. I'm sure you've seen the videos on social media of shelves emptied, people getting in fights over toilet paper, and other things. What does that response tell you?
NAFTALI: Well, you know, we're humans, and we -- we panic. What does it tell me? It tells me that perhaps folks don't fully understand that there's no age limit to this disease. That even if you're in -- even if you're in a band of people who are likely to survive, you can still spread it to those who are not necessarily as fortunate as you are because of the age at which this pandemic is occurring.
I think, again, the president is the only person to do this. We have governors who are working really hard to do this and mayors who are doing it, and other civic leaders. But this is the time to talk about us as a community. And that's why community spread should be a threat that everyone is concerned about, and no one wants to be responsible for that. No one wants to be the person whose irresponsibility made this worse.
The president has a chance to make that point clear to people. You know, when he shook the hands of those around him yesterday, he was sending the wrong message. When he was dancing around the issue of getting tested, he was sending the wrong message. He has a chance once again to send the right message which is, Americans, we're all at risk, we owe it to each other to be cautious, prudent, and safe. Then we'll stay healthy.
SANCHEZ: Tim Naftali, I'd shake your hand, but, you know --
NAFTALI: Not a doctor --
SANCHEZ: Hey, if you want to be one at this point --
NAFTALI: No. No, I'm the kind of doctor that would put people to sleep.
SANCHEZ: We could use more.
NAFTALI: No, no, I'm a teaching doctor. Not an MD.
SANCHEZ: Thank you so much, Tim. We appreciate that.
And this just in to CNN, another NBA player testing positive for coronavirus. It is reportedly a member of the Detroit Pistons, though that player is not being named right now. The Pistons planed the Utah Jazz last Saturday. As we now know, two players on the Jazz, Rudy Gobert, Donovan Mitchell, tested positive. The NBA, in light of that news, immediately suspending its season after that first diagnosis.
Coming up, a surreal scene at the White House as members of the press corps get their temperatures taken before a briefing with the president. Is this our new normal? We'll be right back.
SANCHEZ: Look, understandably there is extreme pressure on the Trump administration right now. One urgent goal is to make widespread testing available for people who think they may have coronavirus. But yesterday during his Rose Garden press conference, the president made a false claim about how that's going to happen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: Google is helping to develop a Web site. It's going to be very quickly done, unlike Web sites of the past, to determine whether a test is warranted and to facilitate testing at a nearby, convenient location.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: The truth is Google is not publishing a national-scale Web site related to coronavirus testing any time soon. Somehow the White House conflated actual facts about a small pilot program in California that is slowly being rolled out into a nationwide effort involving Google.
CNN's Chief Media Correspondent, Brian Seltzer joins me now to sort it all out.
Brian, not a great time to make that kind of mistake. Tell us what happened.
BRIAN STELTER, CNN SENIOR MEDIA CORRESPONDENT: This was a very misleading statement from the president, and his aides have doubled down on the statement today. They are lying to the public about what this Web site will do and when it will be available nationwide.
It is a really important pilot happening in the San Francisco Bay area. Google's parent company, Alphabet, is actually in charge of it. This is expected to start on Sunday or Monday, but it will not be nationwide. It will not be available soon enough for some of the people who need it. That's what's misleading about the White House's statements. SANCHEZ: Yes. There was another surprise today after days of sort of
disdaining, refusing the need for testing, we find out that President Trump actually did take a coronavirus test himself. His press secretary Stephanie Grisham saying the results were negative fortunately.
There was an unexpected consequence for reporters today at the White House.
SANCHEZ: Mandatory temperature checks. How did all of that go down?
STELTER: And some reporters at the White House told me they were relieved to see this implemented. They wanted to make sure that the people around them in very close quarters are healthy and are safe and are not running a fever. I think the question -- when it comes to these steps the White House is taking is they are the right steps oftentimes several days or weeks late.
So these temperature checks make sense, they should be done at the White House. But they probably should have been done a week or two ago. It's the sense of a delayed response that is so disturbing and is why so many Americans are concerned right now. And all we can do in the press is to keep calling it out and questioning why more isn't being done quicker.
Look, the president apparently took a coronavirus test on Friday night and received the results by Saturday evening. Less than 24 hours. Let's hope all those Americans who are scared and struggling and sick right now can get responses just as quickly as the president did.
SANCHEZ: Yes. Finally, we all are bearing witness to the world undergoing radical change as a result of this pandemic. Elections postponed, major league sports canceled, schools shutting down. I want to talk to you about some of the cultural changes that we're seeing, too. Broadway going dark.
SANCHEZ: Daytime talk shows, late-night comics taping shows without any audiences. Here's actually a clip. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JIMMY FALLON, LATE-NIGHT HOST: We at NBC decided it would be smarter to not have an audience in order to do our part to help decrease the spread of the coronavirus.
STEPHEN COLBERT, LATE-NIGHT HOST: As you may have noticed, none of you are here right now. Only people in the audience right now -- give me a shot of this -- only people in the audience right now are some members of my staff.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: It's good to have moments of levity like that in a crisis. But --
STELTER: We need it. Yes.
SANCHEZ: Yes. But now these shows have actually stopped production altogether. That's going to have an impact.
STELTER: Yes, it absolutely is. This is like comfort food for America.
STELTER: But all of these late-night shows, all of these daytime talk shows, they have all suspended production. Most major movie releases have been postponed. In fact, today, Boris, we saw some movie theaters start to close in particular spots around the country. As you mentioned, Broadway has gone dark. Most concerts and other performances have been canceled.
The one silver lining is that we all are in the streaming video age.
STELTER: So we've seen symphonies and operas and other companies announce streaming performances. Disney, for example, is releasing "Frozen 2" tomorrow instead of waiting a few months to release it. And we are all at least able to be connected virtually.
Look, I'm coming to you from my home.
SANCHEZ: Right. Yes.
STELTER: I know I'm dressed up all fancy, but I'm coming to you from one of my bedrooms in my home. We're going to see a lot of this in the weeks to come. And it's actually a good thing, not a bad thing. It's a good thing that we can all be connected virtually in these ways. It's not really social distancing that we're doing. We're physically distancing ourselves, but we can all be social.
We can all be connected through technology even as we see a lot of these television shows canceled, all these movies delayed, there are ways for us to keep in touch. And that's going to be so important in the weeks to come.
SANCHEZ: Yes, definitely. There's also more opportunities to watch CNN and Brian Stelter.
Brian, thank you so much. Don't forget to watch Brian's show "RELIABLE SOURCES."
STELTER: Sometime tomorrow. Yes.
SANCHEZ: Yes, right. Tomorrow morning at 11:00 a.m. maybe live in the studio, maybe live at home. We're still figuring that out. Coming up, we're answering some of your questions about the
coronavirus crisis. But first, eerie emptiness from soccer stadiums in Buenos Aires to churches in Italy, theaters in India, and airports in Jerusalem. The coronavirus putting so much of the world on hold.
SANCHEZ: Right now in the U.S. there are more than 2800 cases of coronavirus along with 58 deaths. Dr. Anne Rimoin is back with us to answer some of your questions. But first, we do want to share some breaking news with you.
We're learning that a Japanese man who was on board the Diamond Princess cruise ship has tested positive for the virus for a second time. He was diagnosed positive on February 14th. He was hospitalized, found negative on March 2nd, went home and today had a high temperature, was retested and found to be positive again.
Doctor, what's your reaction to that news?
RIMOIN: Well, I think that this is a likely indication of relapse in a patient. We did see this in the SARS epidemic, that there were many patients who were treated, treated with steroids, other things, and a few weeks later did have relapse. So this is not unheard of when it comes to a viral infection.
SANCHEZ: Yes. I want to get to those viewer questions, too. Come Monday kids are going to have no school in some areas. The vast majority of them are closed. You've made the point previously that young people need to understand they can get sick. That this is not a snow day. So where is it safe for kids to go?
The question here is, can I take my child to an outdoor park, for example? Can they go to a friend's house?
RIMOIN: I think that the key here is we need to keep kids as far away from large groups of kids as we possibly can. The issue here is not that kids are necessarily going to be as ill as the adults that we worry about. Kids do not get as sick, but they can drive infection. And they can spread it to older people. They can spread it to their grandparents.
They can spread it to their sister who has an immune deficiency or to the neighbor who is undergoing chemotherapy. And so it's really important that everybody stay as far away from large groups as possible. It's a very complicated and difficult situation, and there's no one prescribed answer for each group except we do not want to have large groups of people together, children, adults, anybody.
SANCHEZ: Yes, and Doctor, I wanted to fit this in, too, because you have a really important message for everyone watching when it comes to what we need to do to protect the health care system. It could get burdened the way that we've seen in Italy, for example. RIMOIN: Exactly. This is very key point. We need to do everything we
can to protect our health care workers. They are our most precious resource. If the health care workers get sick then the health system will collapse. And this illness is long. So even if you're just thinking about health care workers getting ill, they're going to be ill for two to three weeks, and that takes them out of the system.
Our PPE, the personal protective equipment, stockage is very low. If you don't need to go to the doctor you should cancel the appointment if it is not something that is critical. Health systems should be thinking about, well, if there are elective surgeries can we cancel them? Can we minimize just nonessential visits?
I think that this is the key. Of course you need to stay healthy. So if it's something important to your health you need to do it. But just things that are not urgent or not seriously important, you should talk to your doctor and make the decision with your doctor about do I really need to come in right now? I think this is very, very important at this moment.
SANCHEZ: Yes. And look, this is one we get all the time but it's one that it's important to answer. People want to know about food. Not only can I eat at a restaurant, but is it safe to get take out, and can I get fast food?
RIMOIN: So, when it comes to eating at a restaurant, ideally that is not a good idea. You really are -- it's very hard to control what's around you. If you must go out, be in a place that is not crowded, stay as far away from other people. Be mindful of the fact that servers will be touching your food, the glass that gets handed to you will be touched by someone. You have to think about every single step of the way. So my recommendation to people if they don't need to go out, don't go out.
In terms of takeout, it's a good question. My suggestion is that takeout is better than going to a restaurant. When you get the food just wipe down the containers that you'll get. I would try and remove the packaging as soon as possible, wipe your hands, don't touch your face after touching your food or the containers. I think that these are the steps that you can make that will make a very big difference in terms of minimizing risk.
And I know that this all seems very extreme, but the point is we want to reduce the spread of the virus. It's just really important to reduce the spread, to lower what we like to call flattening the curve so we don't put too much burden on the health system. And so this is one of these things that I know it feels like everybody is being separated and that we're isolating people but the thing is, is we're doing this as a community.
SANCHEZ: It's got to be done. Yes.
Doctor Anne Rimoin, thank you so much for your expertise. Invaluable on a night like tonight. And, hey, that does it for me. I'm Boris Sanchez in New York. Thank
you so much for joining us. Up next it's the CNN global townhall, "CORONAVIRUS, FACTS AND FEARS" with Facebook.
Have a good night.