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New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo Gives Coronavirus Update; Gov. Cuomo: Asked MTA For Full Plan On Daily Disinfecting Of Subways; Gov. Cuomo: GOP Suggestion States Go Bankrupt "Not Even Close To Right"; U.S. GDP Down 4.8 Percent In First Quarter, First Decline In Six Years; Jared Kushner: We're Exceeding Testing Goals. Aired 12-12:30p ET

Aired April 29, 2020 - 12:00   ET



GOV. ANDREW CUOMO (D-NY): And the politicians follow and that's where we are today. Follow the American people. We'll show you a self portrait that was done by American people. This is a self portrait of America. OK. That's a self portrait of America.

You know what it spells? It spells log, that's what it spells. You have to look carefully but that's what the American people are saying. We've received thousands of masks from all across America unsolicited in the mail, homemade, creative personal with beautiful notes from all across the country literally.

Just saying thinking about you. We care; we love you we want to help. And this is just people's way of saying we care and we want to help. This is what this country's about and this is what Americans are about. A little bit more of this and a little bit less of the partisanship and the ugliness and this country would be a better place. Thank you. Thank you guys. Question Bernadette.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Regarding the MTA Meeting you want it one a 24- hour basis. How will this be done?

CUOMO: I didn't say I want 24-hour based Bernadette. I said the - I said when people get into the train in the morning they had to know that that train was disinfected the night before.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So when will this happen and will impact service?

CUOMO: I don't know. I told the MTA give me a plan whereby you will clean and disinfect every train every night so that I can say to the essential workers who are killing themselves for our state. We're keeping the subways opened for you and when you get on the subway in the morning or in the afternoon you know that that car was disinfected the night before.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All right, let's take a listen is there money for that?

CUOMO: It's realistic. It's is an essential. How realistic is it? What is the alternative? Essential workers go to work by the way you may get infected with the Coronavirus on the train on the way to work. That's not realistic. I'm not going to do that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: After - being done prior--

CUOMO: We have been starting. It is a tremendous undertaking that has never been done before. And you're going to have to get homeless people into shelters where they can get housing and the services they need. So that's a second operation.

And the MTA has been going back and forth with the NYPD about this for weeks and weeks and weeks. The MTA hired private security guards to help. But all a private security guard can do is call 311 which is the city hotline which then hasn't called the NYPD who are there in the first place.

So the MTA's story is they're at their wits end. But what I said is look, I don't care. I don't care who's to blame. I don't want to point fingers. I don't care. I'm in a place where I'm dealing with people losing their lives every day okay. I just want to get it done. And I will get it done.

Just tell me what I need to do to get it done. Let's start telling the truth. Let's stop with this filters and everyone covering their own rear end and people skewing facts to cover their wrong reran and let's start telling the truth.

The blunt truth and if it makes some people unhappy that's the way it's going to be. But it has to stop. The trains have to be cleaned the homeless need the services that they need. And we have to be able to do it as a society we have to. Tell me what it takes to clean the trains and disinfect trains? So I know that I can say to the essential workers it's safe to go on those trains.

UNIDENTIFIED FENALE: I think it should be a 24-hour because right now they do a 72-hour cleaning and another--


CUOMO: I'm not going to do a cleaning schedule. I don't do that. I told them give me a plan as to how to make sure every train is cleaned? So that when the train comes in, in the morning it is clean. It's their job to figure out the schedule and how they do it?

But how or whoever it has to be done. I will do whatever I have to do to make that happen. You can't be in a position where you say we're going to send a plane tribute to the nurses and we're going to applaud the nurses at Elmhurst hospital and yesterday I got out of my car and I applauded the nurses in Syracuse and the doctors in Syracuse.

And I said on behalf of every New Yorker. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for what you did on behalf of every New Yorker. I believe that. But then on the - well then help them. And you know that they're getting on the subways to go to work. Make sure the subways are clean.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What should - what should be done for most people? CUOMO: People should be in shock - look, I've been working on the homeless issue. Bernadette I've been working on the homeless issue since I was 20 something years old. I did the first plan for Mayor David Dinkins on how to help the homeless in New York City?

Mayor Dinkins accepted it. Next Mayor was Rudy Giuliani, he came in and he accepted it. We made tremendous progress on the homeless. I then went to Washington I did a homeless plan for Bill Clinton for the nation on how to help the homeless?

He accepted it we implemented it. It made tremendous progress. It was called the "Continuum of Care". This Federal Government still is operating the program. We have done this before. This is no false, this is a false choice. Well the homeless are on the trains they have a right to be on the train.

No one wants to live their lives on a subway train. And we have a higher obligation as a society. Then to say okay, you can sleep in a subway car. No, you deserve a shelter. That is safe. And services if you need them to help you improve your life that's what we should offer and that's what we will.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Got more a problems with nursing homes, more affection and more deaths. Is it safe at point then to take action set up to be some kind of a local facility for nursing home patients especially senior of the states?

CUOMO: What facility, sorry?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Only resources - your policy that nursing homes et cetera on occasions such like all the restrictions but it seems that many, many - getting off in an impossible standard. So this New York when we set up some kind of overflow facility European calls--

CUOMO: We have done that. I listen to the facts again okay. We've done that just. Let me give you the fact okay because these are facts. By talking about facts, you can have an opinion but you can't have your own facts right? Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan.

A nursing home takes a COVID person if "IF" If they can adequately care for that person. If they cannot adequately care for that person they say I can't adequately care for COVID person fine. Either they transfer that person to a different facility or they transfer - call the Department of Health and say we have to transfer that person.

We have other facilities. We have COVID only overflow facilities just what you're talking about. We have it. We've discussed this. So we can do that but it starts with their determination. They have to say, I can't provide for this person.

As long as they say I can't provide for this person and by the way nobody even asked why? It's just I can't provide for this person okay. We'll take the person and we have overflow facilities next.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Governor and maybe this is a question for the Commission Official Zucker on - there is a Department of the Health guidance that essentially allows asymptomatic nursing home staffers to work with COVID positive patients.


UNIDENTIFIED MLE: Some local officials are raising some concerns with this because it means people are still willing to work while they're asymptomatic and are COVID positive. Is there any concern that you have with nursing home staffers still going to work even though they tested positive for Coronavirus?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So the patients who are - your question about being asymptomatic. We make sure they have the necessary precautions that they need if I go in there to care for other individuals there and that includes all the PPE and we monitor them.

And we're working on a way to test and we are testing individuals who are in the nursing homes both the workers as well as the patients.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is there any indication of how many nursing home staffers are COVID positive asymptomatic and are still going to work every day?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're looking at those numbers.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Governor, "#extendthelockdown" is trending on Twitter today. Yesterday you said one of your fears was that, one of your fears early on was that essential workers would not go to work out of fear of Coronavirus. As you get ready to open businesses in the state are you worried that the next round of workers will not want to go back to work? Will be will be fearful of going back to work?

CUOMO: I disagree, understanding the question. Extend the lockdown is trending meaning people want to extend and not open up?


CUOMO: Okay. Last week--

JOHN KING, CNN HOST: The Governor of New York Andrew Cuomo giving his daily Coronavirus briefing in Albany. If you're watching around America or around the world some of this may seem a bit in the weeds.

But the Governor discussing the complexity of this the first at the top of the briefing, the medical data in New York all heading in the right direction which is why the Governor spent a lot of his time on a political fight with Washington.

He wants Federal money to help rescue his state and other states from the punishing budget impact the Coronavirus has had. Then at the end there talking about nursing homes, talking about the homeless on the New York City subways, talking about trending on Twitter right now "#extendthelockdown" in New York as many workers are apprehensive about going back to work in this environment.

Always fascinating to watch these briefings you can tell now the Governor feels more confident about the healthcare situation in his state, trending better but he says not out of the woods yet. One of the issues he says is absolutely critical is more testing.

He says they're testing Fire Department, EMTs in New York, testing the police in New York trying to get a sense of the racial disparities by testing in lower income communities in New York City and elsewhere.

Let's discuss the challenges ahead. CNN Medical Analysts and Epidemiologist Dr. Larry Brilliant joins me now. Doctor Brilliant I'll leave the conversation about the New York City Subway for another day but it does get the complexity is every Governor tries to make this decision you have some pockets in your state.

New York is 19 million people in New York City 8 million people. When you heard the Governor go through earlier yes, they're testing the Fire Department in New York, the EMTs not surprisingly have a higher positive rate than the Fire Department At Large. The New York Police Department has a higher positive rate.

You have been an advocate for more testing signing onto a letter saying the Federal Government needs to spend a lot more money and develop a much more comprehensive and coordinated testing system.

I want to read you something from the President's point man on testing Admiral Giroir in "Time" magazine. He said there's absolutely no way on earth on this planet or any other planet then we can do 20 million tests a today or even 5 million tests a day. You agree with that or does that sound too stubborn to you?

DR. LARRY BRILLIANT, EPIDEMIOLOGIST: First of all good morning. Good morning John from the West Coast. What a pleasure it was watching a politician look at graphs and charts and speak like an epidemiologist. Let's just start with that. That was so refreshing.

And then to cap it off by putting up that collage of masks it reminds me of a quilt from another era that sparked a movement. So it was a wonderful briefing. So on the issue of - we're not going to be able to make what the medical community feels is the necessary number of tests.

And the question is what planet do we live on? I live on planet America. Of course, we can make the tests. Why we are not able to make the test is that the Federal Government has defaulted on its obligation to lead and the FDA which we need to believe in has allowed into the country or manufactured tested a faulty.

Would you accept the pregnancy test that was 30 percent wrong either positive or negative. And you're going to be a baby shower and - we're not going to accept tests that are wrong. We're not going to accept tasks that are in adequate in number.

If we want to open up the country there is a reciprocal relationship between how quickly we can open up parts of the country?


DR. BRILLIANT: And how quickly we can find those parts that need to be tested, quarantined and taken out of the density of susceptible? As we do that we can open things up but you can't have one without the other.

KING: Well, as you make that case and you make it passionately and you make it based on science. Yet, you heard the Admiral there saying no way, no way we can get anywhere near the number that you think is necessary. I think you think the numbers actually probably need it more than 5 million test today if you're going to have a sustained reopening.

As we go through the summer and into the fall and it starts to come back. Doctor Fauci on the other hand, he says progress is being made. He says we're going strongly in the right direction. He says you know keeping the country safe and healthy hopefully we should see that as we get toward the end of May, the beginning of June.

I think you'd prefer to listen to Dr. Fauci than the Admiral in the sense that Dr. Fauci is more asp rational. However, do you continue to hear from the Federal Government numbers that you believe are well below the necessary bar?

DR. BRILLIANT: Well, even Dr. Fauci is saying now that we need to have three to five million tests a week. If you multiply five times, 52 weeks you're in a ball park that the Admiral says exists only on another planet.

So there's something that needs to be reconciled. But the question that America cannot make the number of tests that we need it's off the table. We have to otherwise I believe we have to have a 3 year plan.

I think we need to understand that we're going to be in this game for a while. It doesn't mean it's going to be 3 years before stores are open or schools are open or you can have a love affair and go out and do the things that we want to do.

What we need to understand, if it's going to take us 12 to 18 months to have a vaccine, what you get when you get a vaccine is not rainbows and unicorns? When you get a vaccine you get a vaccination program in 220 countries all around the world.

In order to get there and to make sure that we're safe in that interim period until we have a vaccine and we're delivering it everywhere. We need to have adequate testing if that requires a Manhattan Project or moon shot or brand new agency we can do that.

KING: We can do that if the President of the United States and his team except the challenge. You can't do it without him on that side. Dr. Larry Brilliant I appreciate as always making the case based on science. I like that you bring passion to the science as well. Maybe they'll listen.

It doesn't sound at least from the Admiral's prospective at the moment he will. But the conversation will continue. Dr. Brilliant I appreciate your time. Up next for us, we shift to the economic impact of the Coronavirus. The U. S. GDP shrinking nearly 5 percent that is the worst drop since the financial crisis back in 2008.


KING: Stunning new government numbers today that tell us the American economy just suffered its worst quarter since 2008 first drop in 6 years. The new GDP numbers you see it here, showing the economy shrinking nearly 5 percent in the first quarter of 2020.

The Coronavirus shut down halted growth that raised consumer confidence and pummeled the nation's retail industry. Julia Chatterley the Anchor of CNN Business First Move is here with us to take a closer look. Julia a 5 percent drop you say wow and we also know that was the end of the first quarter. In the second quarter were now in probably worse.

JULIA CHATTERLEY, CNN ANCHOR: I'm sure we're in worse quite frankly. Remember when we're talking about these quarterly numbers we were only really talking about a shutdown that took place for the last two weeks of March. Fast forward to this month April and we've been in this situation with many of us stuck at home, not spending the way that we have done in the past.

We know that for that the second quarter is going to be multiple times worse. How much worse? Really is going to depend on what happens now as states like Florida, like Georgia reopen and take a look at what reopening in the new normal at this stage looks like?

In the end the difference between economic recession bad enough economic depression, don't even want to go with that and economic recovery comes down to consumer confidence. What this number is for the most part is consumer spending 70 percent of the U. S. economy is based on the consumer.

One in four jobs in the United States are tied in some way to the retail sector. And what was seen in this number was the fastest drop in consumer spending done in over 40 years protecting that confidence, consumer confidence as we come out of this is going to be critical.

It comes down to two things. The stimulus checks the lending to small businesses bringing those jobs back. But two getting on top of the health crisis and we talk about this time and again. It's more pivotal now than ever is as states begin reopening. More of both things, more need to get on top of the health crisis and more support for people is probably going to be crucial here.

KING: And we will see now that those states begin to reopen 10 days, 2 weeks from now we will see if the case rates are going up or if they've managed to pull this off in a safe way? Julia Chatterley as always appreciate the insight on those quite depressing numbers.

Let's take a look at the markets, right now you see the DOW up more than 530 points there for the latest stock market news and strategy for your portfolio in these troubled times. Check out "Markets Now" streaming live 12:45 PM eastern only at CNN Business.

Up next, why Los Angeles is not seeing the decline in Coronavirus cases but the rest of the great state of California is? (COMMERCIAL BREAK)


KING: Testing remains a serious flashpoint as states begin the reopening of the American economy. The President's son-in-law and Senior Adviser tells us, all is good.


JARED KUSHNER, SENIOR ADVISER TO PRESIDENT TRUMP: Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx gave the innovation team and Admiral Giroir goals that they'd like to see hit on testing. We've been able to so far exceed those goals for the month of April. Somebody asked me why it took so long? I actually said you should look at how did we do this so quickly?


KING: But Governors and Mayors and public health officials tell us every day something very different. Yes, progress in some areas, they say, but also still supply shortages and confusion--