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ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT

U.S. Coronavirus Death Toll Tops 100,000, Nearly Triple The U.K. Which has The Second-Highest Number of Deaths in The World; Trump Silent So Far On U.S. Topping 100,000 Coronavirus Deaths; Biden Calls Milestone "Heart-Rending" in Video Response; U.S. Coronavirus Death Toll Tops 100,000 as Dr. Fauci Says Case Surge from Reopening Won't Appear for Weeks. Aired 7-8p ET

Aired May 27, 2020 - 19:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST: To our viewers, thanks very much for watching.

Erin Burnett OUTFRONT starts right now.

ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: OUTFRONT next, 100,000 coronavirus deaths many, many avoidable, the President silent so far tonight.

Plus, the victims, an overwhelming majority over the age of 65. So what needs to be done to protect the vulnerable as the economy reopens?

And one of the places flaring up in the United States. We're going to talk to an ICU doctor there who says he expect the situation to get worse.

Let's go OUTFRONT.

Good evening. I'm Erin Burnett.

OUTFRONT tonight, the breaking news, the U.S. just surpassing a stunning and tragic death toll 100,000 lives. We now stand in this country at 100,271 people dead from Coronavirus. Those are numbers that are hard to grasp. It is a number that is nearly triple the number of deaths in the country with the second highest death toll, the United Kingdom.

And it means that as of now, one in every four people who have died in the entire world from Coronavirus is an American. One hundred thousand is a number that President Trump said at one time the United States would never hit.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: By April, in theory, when it gets a little warmer, it miraculously goes away.

The coronavirus which is very well under control in our country. We have very few people with it. The people are getting better. They're all getting better. We're going down, not up. We're going very substantially down, not up.

The original 15 as I call them, eight of them have returned to their homes to stay in the homes. When you have 15 people and the 15 within a couple of days is going to be down to close to zero. That's a pretty good job we've done.

It's going to disappear one day. It's like a miracle, it will disappear.

We would have lost 2 million, we would have lost if we did it a different way. But you're talking about a hundred thousand more, a little bit less more, who knows?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Well, it's more and you just heard the President. That was as recently as yesterday saying this grim numbers a positive scenario. A person who said 15 is going to go to zero in a few days and it's gone.

The reality of this is that many Americans who died did not have to die. New research from Columbia found but if social distancing had been in place seven days earlier, the United States could have prevented 36,000 deaths through early May.

The big question here when you look at this number is though why is America failing, where Korea, Japan, Thailand, Germany, the list goes on and on have succeeded in preventing such mass death. This is America. The country that the whole world always has and should be looking to as a leader. We are leading now in death.

Kaitlan Collins has been traveling with the President. She's OUTFRONT Live at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida where the President was today, for the delayed astronaut launch. Kaitlan, any reaction from the President tonight on this grim milestone?

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Not yet, Erin. The president came here hoping to hit a much more positive milestone, talking about what was going to happen with the first American spacecraft to launch in nine years. And instead, he's returning back to Washington hitting this very grim and painful milestone for a lot of people of a hundred thousand deaths here.

And as you noted, it's not only a number that the President said he didn't think we'd ever hit. He thought that the death rate in the United States from coronavirus would be substantially lower than this. And if you've look at the President's Twitter feed in recent days, he's hardly made mention of the toll that we could all see that we were coming close to except to say and push back on his critics that said he had not done enough soon enough. And he was saying that if he hadn't done what he did, that there would be close to 1.5 million to 2 million deaths in the U.S.

That came from a study, Erin, and that was that there was zero mitigation efforts. So that was the only time that you've seen the President lately referenced the fact that we were approaching a hundred thousand deaths here in the United States. And instead he's used his Twitter feed in recent days to promote conspiracies about certain anchors to air his grievances with Twitter after it was fact checking other claims that he was making.

And it comes as his health experts behind the scenes say that this is far from over and you saw Dr. Fauci on CNN earlier offering a pretty sober analysis of what he says he believes is to come in the next few weeks, Erin. And still so far no mention of the death toll from the President. Though he did just quote tweet a Fox News anchor Lou Dobbs saying that he was the greatest president ever.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Kaitlan.

And OUTFRONT now Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Dr. Jonathan Reiner, who advised the White House medical team under President George W. Bush, currently the Director of the Cardiac Cath Lab at George Washington University Hospital, and Gloria Borger, our Chief Political Analyst.

Sanjay, this is a tragic milestone. It is one that was preventable.

[19:05:01]

It is something the President, of course, repeatedly played down in the beginning. I think that sound bite of 'it's 15 and going to zero' will live, obviously, forever. The serious now though is it is all too clear and the numbers, of course, are going up.

SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. I mean that's absolutely true. And I think there's going to be a lot of people who say was this inevitable, right? I mean, it was a virus, was this inevitable? And the answer is no, it wasn't inevitable. And that's tough, I think, for people to hear right now.

Because obviously, there's a lot of people who are who are grieving and I think I read a study today, one in seven Americans know someone now at this point who has died of COVID disease. I do. I've seen patients in the hospital really struggling, very sick. It hits very close to home today.

But you're right, this was not inevitable. I mean, you look at countries around the world and if you think about the United States as a patient, think of these other countries around the world as other patients. There are other patients who had the same disease at the same time who were able to have a much different outcome, why?

They didn't have a magic therapeutic or a vaccine or things that we didn't have. They acted early. Took it seriously and I hope that this is a lesson that we can apply quickly, because this isn't over yet.

BURNETT: And Dr. Reiner, of course, the president downplayed the possibility of all these deaths for months and then said, oh, well, the model that assumed there was no mitigation whatsoever had said it could be a lot worse, so this is actually a good scenario, not something to mourn. How damaging was his downplaying, his personal downplaying? Because obviously his medical team was not. How damaging was that personal downplaying to the response? JONATHAN REINER, CNN MEDICAL ANALYST: Well, I'm heartbroken at the

loss in this country and so angry. This administration had really two original unforgivable sins. One was our horrible delay in testing. It took almost two months to test 20,000 people after the first person tested positive in the United States.

But maybe the bigger sin was not only did we not embrace universal protection of our population with face masks, but we actively discouraged it. On February 29th, the Surgeon General of the United States tweeted out a message that basically said, come on, people, stop buying facemask. That occurred at the same time that places like Taiwan and Hong Kong were requiring face masks for their entire population.

Hong Kong is a city almost exactly the same size as New York and the pandemic started about the same time in Hong Kong. They've had four deaths. New York has 20,000 and much of this could have been prevented by the very simple $0.50 cost of wearing a mask.

Only about 30 percent of this country now wears a mask reliably when they go out into public. That's why we failed and that message has been promulgated by this administration. I find it funny that this President is accusing a journalist of murder when literally 10s of thousands of people have died needlessly. Yes, I'm really angry.

BURNETT: I want to talk a lot more about masks, when you say only 30 percent are wearing them reliably and many of the people who aren't. We've heard them on camera saying the reason is the President.

Gloria, first though I just want to say in this - as we sit here with 100,271 known coronavirus deaths. The President and Joe Biden reacting very differently to this. No response yet from the President of the United States, right?

He just tweeted Lou Dobbs, another anchor on Fox, saying he is arguably the greatest president in our history. So that's his response tonight as we passed this milestone.

Joe Biden tweeted out a video and here's a part of that.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JOE BIDEN (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: There are moments in our history so grim, so heart-rending that they're forever fixed in each of our hearts as shared grief. Today is one of those moments. A hundred thousand lives have not been lost to this virus.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Very stark difference there, Gloria.

GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: Totally stark difference. I don't know whether we're going to hear from the President tonight. I certainly think we should hear from the President and not in a statement but in person and I don't know whether he will do that. He seems to be occupied with other things. The emotional gulf between Joe Biden and Donald Trump is so vast, it's

almost indescribable, Erin. The Vice President is sitting there talking directly to people about what it's like to lose someone which he knows an awful lot about and how he feels for them.

And he says, I understand what you're going through. I know this feels like you've been sucked into a black hole, because you could be there when you lost a family member, because they had to die alone.

[19:10:04]

And he talks about how to survive the grief and how to get past it. The President of the United States has apparently moved on from all of this, calls wearing a mask politically correct. Tells governors liberate your state. Open up more quickly. Says he's doing a fabulous job and doesn't meet with publicly at least that we know of with members of families who have gone through what Joe Biden was describing. And that's kind of stunning to me, actually.

BURNETT: Right. He's met with some who have recovered and none in this horrible category of lost.

BORGER: Right.

BURNETT: Dr. Reiner raises the point about masks and today that model, the IHME model has slightly lowered its forecast for overall deaths specifically because of mask wearing, Sanjay. They say it's probably a 50 percent protection against transmission.

Obviously, Dr. Reiner pointed out, the Vice President said average American shouldn't be wearing a mask. The Surgeon General said that this was not a message that is contradictory to what the administration said before. It's contradictory to what the President still says, right? Says that he won't give the satisfaction to people of wearing a mask.

It is the opposite, though, of what Dr. Fauci has said again and again. Here he is.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: I want to protect myself and protect others. And also because I want to make it be a symbol for people to see that that's the kind of thing you should be doing.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: So you have that, Sanjay, Fauci saying I'm going to lead by example. This is a symbol. The President refusing to send that symbol and now Senate Majority Leader Mitch Mcconnell sending a clear message to the President, at least, that he sees Fauci as the leader on this and not the President. Today, Mitch Mcconnell said there's no stigma to wearing a mask, I had one in his hand, had been wearing one and he went on to say this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL (R-KY): You have an obligation to others in case you might be a carrier to take the advice that we've all been given by people like Dr. Birx and

Dr. Fauci and be responsible for others as well as yourself. For myself, I try to be a good example. I mean photos all over the place with me yesterday with my mask on.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: It's a loud and clear message, Sanjay, to the President, but it's still sort of passive. It's not direct. It's listened to Dr. Fauci not, Mr. President shape it up and start doing the right thing.

GUPTA: Yes, absolutely. I mean, and what's I think so striking is that there's a symbolism of it, which I think people are talking about, but there's also the practicality of the fact that it's effective in terms of curbing the spread of the virus and potentially providing some protection to the President who is worried enough about an exposure to this virus that he started taking this unproven medication hydroxychloroquine.

HE must have been worried about his own exposure. And if he was, then was he not also worried about potentially spreading the virus to other people in order to mitigate that you wear a mask. I mean, and the evidence is clear. I mean, if there is good news, Erin, to your point, the IHME models were worse as they as they projected people are moving around, they looked at cell phone data, they saw how much mobility was increasing.

And then they revised those numbers downward. We'll see how the models sort of shake out, but the reason they revised downwards again, because the effectiveness of masks and even though it's a low percentage, like Dr. Reiner pointed out, the significant percentage of people who are wearing masks is making a difference bringing these projected deaths down.

BURNETT: And hopefully people will listen to what they see from leaders, but, of course, we know some people have said the President doesn't wear one I don't need to wear one. What he does matters and he doesn't seem to care. Thank you all very much.

And next, our breaking news continues, we're going to take a look at who has been hit hardest by this deadly virus and what can be done to protect those people as the economy reopens.

Plus, new hotspots in this country. I'm going to speak to a critical care doctor who had warned ICU beds were running low and that he was seeing a spike in younger patients.

And history will have to wait, NASA scrubbing today's historic launch, but they're getting another chance.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:17:58] BURNETT: Breaking news, 100,000 deaths in the United States. There

are still so many unanswered questions about this virus. We do, though, have some facts about who has been hit the hardest. Tom Foreman is OUTFRONT.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We don't want ...

(END VIDEO CLIP)

TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT(voice over): Beyond the protests, the pleas for masks and social distancing ...

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DR. DEBORAH BIRX, WHITE HOUSE CORONAVIRUS RESPONSE COORDINATOR: It's really critically important.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOREMAN(voice over): ... and the general pandemonium of the pandemic, the number of Americans lost has steadily climbed enough to fill a stadium. Eighty percent of the deaths so far have involved people over the age of 65.

On the upper end of that age group facilities for the elderly have valiantly tried to keep the virus out. But when it gets in, the close quarters can allow wildfires spreading.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. ANDREW CUOMO (D) NEW YORK: Nursing homes are the prime breeding ground for this killer.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOREMAN(voice over): A study by Kaiser suggests more than a third of all COVID deaths are tied to long-term care facilities. Yes, they've cut off almost all visitors ...

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FAUCI: But something that is much more regressive that has been in the past, I believe, should be done.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOREMAN(voice over): ... younger people fare better. Those a decade or two under retirement account for about 18 percent of the deaths and people under the age of 45 make up only a tiny sliver of the fatalities. In all age groups, people with other health issues such as chronic heart or lung conditions are also more likely to pass on. That may partially explain why African-Americans are apparently being struck harder than other ethnic groups, since black communities tend to have more of those conditions.

And geographically, the toll is uneven too. New York is by far the hardest hit states, add New Jersey and you have 41 percent of all fatalities. But other states have been hammered too. Among them, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Illinois, California and Michigan are despite loud calls to simply throw open the shops, restaurants, gyms and more. The governors moving cautiously.

[19:20:04]

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GOV. GRETCHEN WHITMER (D) MICHIGAN: We're going to stay tethered to the data. We're going to follow the science and we've got to get this right. And anything else is to put people in jeopardy and I'm not willing to do that.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(END VIDEOTAPE)

FOREMAN: It's easy to get lost in all these numbers and statistics, but important to remember, for each and every individual, every family out there, this was a terrible and personal thing and also worth remembering right at this moment, statistically, there are people watching this show, who will not be with us in two more weeks or three or four and will join that dreadful count, Erin.

BURNETT: Poignantly put a horrible truth. All right, thank you very much, Tom.

And I want to go now to Dr. William Schaffner, who is a Professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, also former official with the CDC. And Dr. Schaffner, thank you for being back with me.

We look at these numbers, there is no way to do anything but think of the great grief that is out there. When we try to understand where the deaths are happening, we see 80 percent of them are happening to people who are 65 or older. What does that mean in terms of how to protect them from here?

DR. WILLIAM SCHAFFNER, PROFESSOR, INFECTIOUS DISEASE DIVISION, VANDERBILT UNIVERSITY MEDICAL CENTER: Well, Erin, I'm in deep mourning, I'm in deep mourning person, I'm in deep mourning as a clinician and also as a person who works in public health. Many of these deaths could have been prevented.

But going forward, we want to prevent many, many more deaths, right? And for people aged 65 and older, they should please take heed of the guidelines, the recommendations, the admonitions remain home as much as possible, avoid crowds. If you do go out, please wear a mask, do a lot of good hand hygiene and obey that six foot rule. Be careful of yourselves. Watch who you allow in your home, do it very judiciously. We want to keep this virus from approaching you and in order to do that, we have to keep people from approaching you. And I'm afraid, those are the kinds of interventions we'll have to

live with as uncomfortable as socially disturbing as they are for some time.

BURNETT: Dr. Schaffner, I mean, look, you're being very direct about it. I guess, when you say to keep people from approaching you when you're in that older age group, if we do that as a society, does that enable things like kids who obviously when you look at their death rates, essentially zero, they can go back to school, they can go back to things this summer, their parents can go back to work, the economy can start functioning again. I mean, does this concept as people call it a segmentation, is that where we need to be as a society?

SCHAFFNER: Well, segmentation to a degree, yes. But also, we're all together, all of us have to help each other and protect each other. That's the whole principle of wearing the mask. I wear it to protect you. You wear it to protect me. We're protecting each other.

So if we're all in this together and we don't flout the guidelines, then we can work together and open up society safely and progressively begin to reestablish these relationships that we treasure and we need.

BURNETT: And obviously you're saying by sort of putting them on hold or in a different way, you're able to get back to normal more quickly. I mean, what about this issue with nursing homes, long-term care facilities? More than a third of all deaths are tied to them as we just heard Tom report. So what do we do to protect people in those facilities? Obviously, there is no way to get it right.

I mean, I spoke to somebody who runs one of them in Washington. She had not had a single death in her facility. It can be done. But it is certainly not what we have seen across this country.

SCHAFFNER: We all have to, in running a nursing home, focus on good infection control. We need to train our personnel. They must be masked. We ought to check their temperatures before they come in and get a symptom check to make sure that no one's ill before they work.

And then we can't allow many visitors in for this period of time. We have to semi isolate these patients, because they are the most frail among us. So we have to kind of put a barrier of infection control around these institutions and the people in them.

I think it can be done. It may not be able to be done perfectly, but we can do a better job than we're currently doing.

BURNETT: All right. Dr. Schaffner, thank you very much.

[19:25:02]

I appreciate the bluntness and the honesty. Thanks, sir.

And next cases of coronavirus on the rise in Alabama. One doctor there has been warning, they're running low on ICU beds. And tonight why he fears the situation is about to become much worse. Because the anger building tonight on the streets of Minneapolis after

the death of a black man in police custody. We're going to take you there live.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:29:21]

BURNETT: Tonight the expected spike in cases that's coming as states reopen won't be visible for weeks. That's the warning issued by Dr. Anthony Fauci who urged Americans not to get overconfident. It comes as 14 states are still seeing a rise and confirmed cases. Nick Watt is OUTFRONT.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't need a bag, it's OK.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

NICK WATT, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: In L.A. today, you can walk into any store again after nearly 10 weeks, but now with a mask.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAYOR ERIC GARCETTI (D) LOS ANGELES: We're not moving beyond COVID- 19, but we're learning to live with it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WATT(voice over): Long Island also reopening today just 74 deaths reported in New York State today down from over 800 a day in early April.

[19:30:00]

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CUOMO: When you gone through what we have gone through, it's a sign that we're headed in the right direction.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

[19:30:07]

WATT: New York City still a few weeks away and expect more of this -- sidewalk dining this summer.

MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO (D), NEW YORK CITY: Even with that, you got a lot to figure out in terms of social distancing, face coverings, protocols.

WATT: The projected U.S. death toll was just dropped by 11,000 by those well-known University of Washington modelers, they say because many of us are wearing masks -- but not all.

DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: That's not prudent and that's inviting a situation that could get out of control.

WATT: Caesars in Vegas will open next week. Visitors strongly encouraged to mask up. The Bellagio, New York, New York, and the MGM grand will also open that same day. SeaWorld Orlando hopes to open in two weeks. Anyone over two must be masked. Disneyworld now planning to open about a month later in mid July at reduced capacity and none of those crowd magnet parades or fireworks.

FAUCI: The best news of public health is that we are seeing in certain areas a significant plateauing and diminution. That's sort of sobered by the fact that in other areas, unfortunately, we are seeing some uptick.

WATT: New case counts are now falling in the likes of Texas, Michigan, and those hard-hit northeastern states. But steeply up in Alabama, Arkansas, and West Virginia, they're also still creeping up in California, which just joined New York, New Jersey, and Illinois as the states with over 100,000 cases each.

And where L.A. County just unveiled a possible plan for schools come the fall, staggered start times, everyone masked, and teachers, not students, moving between classrooms.

MAYOR ERIC GARCETTI (D), LOS ANGELES: Living in the in between is not where anyone wants to be. But it's better than living in the -- completely in the shadows or running too fast simply to the light.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WATT: And here is a little interesting nugget we got from L.A. County today. They estimate that there are now 2 million more people moving around with houses of worship, offices and stores open. And if let's say 2 percent of them are infected, that is an extra 40,000 people walking around Los Angeles County, potentially spreading the virus, which is why those who are in the know keep on going on about the masks and the distance -- Erin.

ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST: All right. Thank you very much, Nick.

And in the south, cases in eight states are trending higher, including Alabama, where our next guest says cases have come back with a vengeance over the past three weeks. He's Dr. David Thrasher, critical care doctor in Montgomery who specializes in lung diseases.

And, Dr. Thrasher, you know, thank you for coming back. I'm sorry that you are back, given what's happening and what you're seeing. You know, when we talked a week ago, you said ICU beds in Montgomery were running low. You talked about one hospital maxed out. You said younger people between the ages of 25 and 50 accounted for 40 percent of the cases in your state.

What are you seeing today? DR. DAVID THRASHER, CRITICAL CARE DOCTOR, MONTGOMERY PULMONARY

CONSULTANTS: Well, in the last one week, Alabama had more cases than 46 other states. Montgomery in the last 30 days has tripled the number of cases. Hospitals are -- were able to handle the number of patients but it's tight. We have three ICU beds available in the entire city and we got four patients in the emergency room on ventilators.

BURNETT: So you have three beds available in the entire city, as cases are continuing to go up, correct?

THRASHER: Yes. Well, that's three ICU beds. Like I said, you give me a good nurse, a ventilator and put them in a parking lot and we've got an ICU. ICU beds per se, only three available in the city. We have to reserve some of these for strokes, heart attacks and other stuff.

BURNETT: So, so, look, you know, when we said -- spoke last time, you said 25 and 50 were 40 percent of the cases. Are you still seeing that, this sort -- this large group of young people coming to the hospital?

THRASHER: Well, not necessarily the hospitals. But the cases in Alabama, age 25 to 50 years old, 40 percent of the cases are that. Now, they only account for around 4 percent of the deaths. The biggest deaths are over the age of 65, 81 percent. But they only account for 23 percent of the cases.

So, it's the younger people who yet get the disease, they tend to fair better with it. But the younger -- excuse me, the older people over 65 are the ones that are dying from it.

BURNETT: Right, and the young people --

THRASHER: Having said that, we've lost a couple of 30-year-olds and a 20-year-old, 26-year-old.

[19:35:00]

BURNETT: So, you know, I know states like Alabama, of course, have been easing restrictions for a while, and we have seen people relaxing social distancing measures, you know, in many places around this country as if the virus is no longer a threat. Your concern, though, that June could be even worse than what you're seeing now in your state.

Why is that, Dr. Thrasher?

THRASHER: Well, it's possible. The PPE money has on the spent by the end of June, and there could be more layoffs at that time and more people coming into the unemployment ranks. That means more people out.

But having said that, I strongly believe that we've got to open up society. We can't bankrupt America. We have to get back to work, because we can lose more people from unemployment. I was county coroner for 13 years, and I saw a lot of suicides because of financial reasons. We know that 81 percent increase in unemployment, there's a 1 percent

increase in suicide and over 3 percent increase in overdoses from drugs and alcohols. It's a real problem. We can lose 70,000, 100,000 people because of the economic ramifications.

So we got to work, but we got to go back and do it safely, wear masks and do the things that you've been talking about.

BURNETT: All right. Well, Dr. Thrasher, I appreciate your time and I thank you, sir.

THRASHER: Thank you.

BURNETT: And OUTFRONT next, the rising death toll creating a lot of uncertainty and concern tonight in a crucial swing state.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: People are not being respectful of other people. We're all in the same storm, different boats.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: The tensions escalating, protestors gathering tonight after the death of a black man in police custody. We are live on the ground where this is going on in Minneapolis tonight.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:40:38]

BURNETT: Tonight, uncertainty and fear in a key swing state, as one rural Wisconsin county reopens. Some of its small business owners are divided over the president's handling of the crisis.

Miguel Marquez is OUTFRONT.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Forest County, Wisconsin, where the pandemic has left nearly a third of the workforce unemployed, some here unsure how they'll make it through the summer.

LORI LOCKRIDGE, STYLIST AND OWNER, LUSICOUS LOCKS: I still owe for rent here, I owe foreign to my home. I'm behind two months here, I'm behind two months there. I mean, thank God that I have lovely people who I lease from here and lease from there.

MARQUEZ: Lori Lockridge, owner of Luscious Locks salon, says she still hasn't received her $1,200 stimulus check and she has applied for a small business loan but still hasn't received an answer.

LOCKRIDGE: We depend on every bit of money that we get coming in and when we were shut down, we got nothing and then we were promised things and never got it. So I would just like to see everything get back better and back to normal.

MARQUEZ: One small business owner feeling forgotten. The experience so frustrating, she's upset at the handling of the crisis and not sure she'll vote for Donald Trump again.

SHAWN SCHMIDT, RESTORES MUSCLE CARS: When I do apart, I take it completely apart.

MARQUEZ: Shawn Schmidt restores muscle cars.

SCHMIDT: That will be going back up pretty soon.

MARQUEZ: He supports the president and thinks he's doing a fine job but is still concerned the state may be reopening too quickly.

SCHMIDT: In fact, this past weekend the town was just flooded with people that aren't from here. Southern Wisconsin, Illinois, Chicago, you know?

MARQUEZ (on camera): You think they could bring it here?

SCHMIDT: Oh, absolutely. I think they probably will.

MARQUEZ (voice-over): It was just about two weeks ago that Wisconsin's highest court invalidated the statewide stay-at-home order, creating a rush to reopen for some, hesitation for others.

Yvonne Domke was just about to open her second business when the pandemic struck.

YVONNE DOMKE, OWNER, YVONNE'S CLASSY CLOSET: One minute I was in business and the next I had to shut my doors.

MARQUEZ: She laid off to employees and has since hired them back. She opens to hire a third soon but is concerned for their safety since everyone seems to be playing by different rules.

DOMKE: This past weekend, I was a little concerned with Memorial weekend and more traffic.

MARQUEZ (on camera): Why a little concerned?

DOMKE: Just people not being respectful of other people. Everybody has -- is going through -- were all in the same storm, different boats.

MARQUEZ: For businesses opening up here, the biggest concern, avoiding a second wave of infections that could shut them down again.

BRUCE WALENTOWSKI, OWNER, FLOWERS FROM THE HEART: Some people are just ready to go gangbusters and many of them are taking it slow but they are just very nervous of what the future is going to be because they still say a second wave all this is going to come. And what is that going to do with us?

(END VIDEOTAPE) MARQUEZ: Now, a couple of things to keep in mind, the death rate here and the overall number of cases is ticking upwards they are also testing a lot more so that might have something to do with that latter part.

But as we travel across the states in retail shops, summer requiring masks, others are not, some restaurants are packed in full, others aren't even open yet. It's a real mishmash of. The only thing the government can do right now urge people to stay home and keep those social distancing rules in place at least for now -- Erin.

BURNETT: All right. Thank you very much, Miguel.

And next, protest interrupting in Minneapolis after the death of a black man in police custody. Why is the mayor asking where the officer is not in jail?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAYOR JACOB FREY, MINNEAPOLIS: If you had done it, or I had done it, we would be behind bars right now.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Plus, as the nation mourns the 100,000 lives lost to coronavirus, we remember one of the victims -- a husband, a father, a popular leader at a school.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:48:49]

BURNETT: Breaking news, protests going right now in Minneapolis, following the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died while being arrested by police. Tonight, the city's mayor is now joining those calling on prosecutors to file charges against the officer. He is seen on a video, putting his knee on Floyd's neck, while Floyd was yelling he could not breathe.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP

FREY: Why is the man who killed George Floyd not in jail? If you had done it, or I had done it, we would be behind bars right now. And I cannot come up with a good answer to that question.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: You see these mass protests tonight.

Sara Sidner OUTFRONT from Minneapolis.

I mean, Sara, this is pretty incredible how this is escalating. What are you seeing?

SARA SIDNER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, I mean, it is -- it is -- pictures that we haven't seen for a very long time, partly because of coronavirus, partly because of this video that has come out, unprecedented display, and you are hearing from police chiefs across the country, basically saying that this is not the way that we are supposed to perform our jobs.

This is being condemned by the mayor of the city, saying that he believes that the prosecutor needs to go after these four officers, especially the officer who put his knee on George Floyd's neck, and you are also seeing a reaction in the streets.

[19:50:10]

As you might imagine, this isn't just anger. This is pain that people are feeling, and frustration that they are feeling as they see this video and imagine their own family members, and seeing their friend, and their neighbor end up dying in the streets. I do want to give you a look, we are outside third precinct here where police have decided to flank the entire block around of the precinct before where you are seeing that open space outside the Mini Haha wine and spirits. That's where most of the protesters were for quite some time.

There were water bottles that were being thrown at the officers at the precinct itself, windows busted out, and officers responded with beanbags, with tear gas, and then responded with numbers of officers coming out of the department and they brought in horses as well. Now, you are seeing a line of officers standing along that street near east Lake Street, and on the other side of them are protesters.

You can still hear those beanbags being fired time and time again. Every now and then, you will get a blast of tear gas that you will see pop up.

People are angry, but they started with being extremely distraught, seeing this video, is very hard to watch for anyone who doesn't know George Floyd. For those who do, this has been a horrific, horrific time for them to have to get through -- Erin.

BURNETT: All right. Sara, thank you very much.

I want to go now to Joey Jackson, criminal defense attorney and CNN legal analyst.

So, Joey, I guess the bottom line question here from looking at this, should the officer face charges?

JOEY JACKSON, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Erin, I don't think there is any question about that. And I think if you look at it and under any reasonable measure there needs to be a prosecution. You know, when you look at issues of excessive force, and I know this comes a lot of emotion and it should because of the blatant nature of what occurred, even look at it legally, and forget about the emotion, you look at it and see, was there an imminent fear that the officer was facing when he had the knee in the neck of Mr. Floyd?

And the answer is resoundingly no. You look at the force to use, that is the officer, and so it is a proportionate to what ever threat was post? The answer is no. You don't see any threat. You see a person detained, and really not resisting at all.

And then, you get to the third question, Erin, and that's the reasonability of the officers' actions. A lot of times we speak about this in the context of a split second decisions, and I don't see anything split-second about this. And the final point I will make a lot of times you don't see federal prosecutions because something is missing. It's called willful behavior.

You have to establish that it was a willful violation. I don't know anything will fold and putting your knee on someone's next for several minutes until they die. I do think they should be prosecuted, very thorough.

BURNETT: So, then, a police report that was filed, they said that Floyd, their words, physically resisted officers after he got out of the car. So, then, you can look at surveillance video which we have obtained from nearby restaurant, and it shows an officer escorting Floyd out of the car and handcuffs, Floyd sitting on the sidewalk. Obviously, there is no fiscal resistance in this video whatsoever. I mean, what do you make of that discrepancy? We just don't see what they put on the report.

JACKSON: I make of it that it's not true. Let's call it for what it is, oftentimes we say we don't want to rush any judgments, we want to let the investigation unfold, yada, yada, that's true. I know as a person who stands in court people all the time, that we want to let facts come out, but we have it on videotape which is clearly evidence seeing a criminal act.

You have bystanders, Erin, that around saying remove your -- remove your knee from his neck. He can't breathe. He saying he can breathe. People are pleading with the officers and it's almost as if they're just so indifferent, or the individual was, and when I say they, the others around that, my view, equally is responsible. Should you act in the face of that?

So, I think based on that discrepancy, based on the failure the other officers to act, based upon the misconduct, there needs to be a prosecution here, and I think based upon what I see here, it will be a very successful prosecution at that.

BURNETT: Joey Jackson, thank you.

JACKSON: Thanks.

BURNETT: And next, the heartbreaking story of just one of the 100,271 Americans who have lost their lives to coronavirus.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[19:58:06]

BURNETT: Tonight, the United States reaching a once unthinkable milestone, 100,000 lives have now been lost in this country to coronavirus. And those numbers are going higher every day. As we mourn the staggering lives and try to observe the enormity of this number, there are so many lives to remember. Just individual families across this country who have forever been changed.

One of them is Joe Lewinger. Joe Lewinger left behind three children and his wife Maura. He was a healthy, vibrant, 42 years old, and he spent 20 years dedicated to his career, he worked with kids at a Catholic high school in Long Island, New York, he was an assistant principal, coach of the basketball team.

And I spoke to Joe's wife, to Maura, after he died.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAURA LEWINGER, WIFE: He just gave every part of him to every part of his life, his family, his friends. That was Joe. Everybody meant the world to him. He never complains about anything. He just did.

He was just such a giver. He was such a giver in every respect of the world. He just loves to make people happy. He loves to make people feel loved.

I thank him. He must have been the most amazing husband, for making me feel cherished and loved every single day. Every single day, my husband wrote me beautiful love letters in my lunch books. Not just have a great day, but just beautiful letters about what I meant to him and our plans for the weekend, may be for this Friday or just about, you know, maybe the next morning.

We always had a beautiful morning, he was took care of me. He was -- got me my coffee. Just wanted to help me get out of the house, and help me in every way.

And so, I thanked him. I thanked him. And then I prayed, and the doctor took the phone, and he said I'm sorry, but there is no more pulse. And then I played our wedding song for him, and then that was it. So, I was -- I was with him when he passed.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BURNETT: Maura's bravery, and her love for Joe has forever touched me and I know many of you. It has been nearly two months since he died, and I'm going to be speaking with Maura tomorrow night.

I thank all of you for joining us.

Anderson starts now.