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United States About To Hit 40,000 New Coronavirus Cases Today; New Polls Show Biden Leading in More Swing States; Florida Reports Nearly 9,000 Cases, A New Single-Day High. Aired 7-8p ET

Aired June 26, 2020 - 19:00   ET



ERIN BURNETT, CNN HOST, OUT FRONT: OUT FRONT next, the U.S. breaking records on coronavirus cases today. States halting plans to reopen as the Vice President is praising the government's response tonight.

Plus Houston hospitals warning they could soon run out of beds. An ER doctor on the frontlines there is OUT FRONT.

And the President just signs an Executive Order to protect confederate monuments. Let's go OUT FRONT.

And good evening. I'm Erin Burnett. OUT FRONT tonight, the breaking news, the United States about to hit 40,000 new coronavirus cases today, the first time that we've had that many in one day. The death toll in the United States closing in on 125,000 people.

But if all you did was listen to the President and Vice President today, you would be absolutely stunned to hear what I just said because this is what they said.


MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: As we stand here today, all 50 states and territories across the country are opening up safely and responsibly.


BURNETT: Well, that's incorrect. It's factually incorrect. They're not. I mean, 11 states are currently on pause. Some of them are actually backtracking and closing some things down on plans to reopen.

Texas and Florida specifically, they are rolling back reopening plans. Governors of the other nine states say they are not moving forward with the next phase of reopening. So that was incorrect.

And then, the Vice President went on to make this claim.


PENCE: The truth is we did slow the spread. We flattened the curve.

(END VIDEO CLIP) BURNETT: So, he says we flattened the curve. So, let me just show you

America's curve. So, you see the surge, right, in March, and then you see the plateau. And then you see, you know, the jump there at the end, where we are now, getting to 40,000 cases today.

That was a plateau and it's now on its way back up, and I want you to compare the graph to these other graphs. These are countries around the world, right? They all have that surge at the beginning, U.K., Germany, France, Italy, Japan, South Korea, European countries measured in thousands of cases, Asian in hundreds.

But look what happens at the bottom. They go all the way back down and stay that way. Ours never went down, right, and now it's going back up currently with the same steepness of slope as it did at the beginning.

And yet, the Vice President was taking a victory lap during today's briefing and he made sure to credit person number one.


PENCE: Under the leadership of President Trump.

As the President has made clear --

... that's a credit, I believe to our President. The President made that decision.


BURNETT: So, where was the President during this briefing? Well, he was somewhere in the vicinity, but he was on Twitter talking about confederate statues, tweeting this image of people suspected of trying to vandalize the statue of Andrew Jackson and what he was writing was that many people in custody with many others being sought for vandalization of Federal property in Lafayette Park, 10-year prison sentences.

It was hours later that the President did finally say something about the pandemic that's raging right now in the United States like nowhere else. Here he is.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We have a little work to do, and we'll get it done.


BURNETT: Well, that's an understatement. We are learning tonight that people traveling from the United States most likely will not be allowed to even enter the European Union, banned, because the United States has not gotten the virus under control.

Kaitlan Collins is OUT FRONT. She is live outside the White House tonight. Kaitlan, no briefings for eight weeks. The White House obviously felt like they had to do something here, but then they came out and said everything is opening safely and responsibly and opening in 50 states when that's factually untrue.

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it wasn't the message that some people were expecting the Vice President to project from that briefing today after Wednesday's Coronavirus Taskforce briefing and after you're seeing these numbers from this week including yesterday setting a record high of cases per day since the month of April, of course, which is the last time that they had these coronavirus briefings.

Now, you would think that they would have taken more questions. The Vice President instead, Erin, only took a handful of them but before he started taking questions, you saw him arguing saying that he doesn't want the American people to think that because of these new surging infections that the United States is where it was two months ago even though the case numbers per day are mirroring that or beating it.

And of course, the Vice President went on to talk about what precautions Americans should be taking. He ticked off a list of things that the C.D.C. has recommended, but, Erin, he notably left out wearing a mask.

When a reporter asked about the fact that masks can become this political issue, he then only told people that they should be following local or state guidance, ignoring the fact that the C.D.C., a Federal agency of course, has recommended that people wear masks when they are out in public and within the vicinity of other people.

He also defended those rallies that he and the President have been holding and encouraging their supporters to come to where thousands of people are put indoors with very little social distancing, Erin, by saying that it was people's right to the First Amendment, characterizing it more as a personal decision than something they're organizing and urging people to come and to attend.


COLLINS: But I do want to note, two of the most striking things that came out of that briefing today was the Vice President offering a pretty rosy assessment of these numbers and then Dr. Fauci getting up there and having a very sobering warning about what's to come and personal responsibility in this.

But also Erin, the Vice President saying he believed it is inarguable that the reason that there are more cases in the United States is because there's more testing.

Dr. Birx got up and she was going through these slides, and one of the ones she pointed to was of Texas where it showed in May as they were increasing testing, their positive test rates were going down.

In the last two and a half weeks, they've continued to increase testing, but now those positive test rates, Erin, are going up and that completely refutes what the President and Vice President had been telling people and governors for the last several weeks. BURNETT: All right, thank you very much, Kaitlan. It absolutely makes

the crucial point. The percent test rate is what they're looking at. So, if you have 20 percent of them positive, that's the relevant point. It's not the absolute number.

And Kaitlan, I appreciate your time. So let me go now to Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Dr. Jonathan Reiner who advised the White House medical team under George W. Bush, currently in the Cardiac Cath Lab at GW.

So, Sanjay, the Vice President today came out and presented an alternate reality. He said all 50 states and territories across this country are opening up safely and responsibly. That is a quote. Obviously, you now have double digit states halting, stepping back their reopening altogether. Big steps back.

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, I mean, I don't even know where to begin with this particular briefing. You would think two months we haven't had a briefing. There's obviously some real trouble spots in the country, and I'm saying that almost euphemistically.

I thought there was going to be an acknowledgment that, look, we have some problems, significant ones, and here is our plan to address them. Here's what we're going to do. We're convening the Coronavirus Taskforce to address this. We didn't see that at all.

So, there's the last task force briefing. You can see what the numbers were at that point and obviously just you see how the numbers have grown even over the last few weeks.

So, it was a real concern, and there were a lot of things that were said that were just basically a whitewash of what's actually happening in the country, and that's what I think worries me.

How are you going to fix a problem if you don't even acknowledge it?

BURNETT: Right. Well, that's the thing. If you're in complete denial about it, then you obviously don't have a plan to fix it because you don't believe it's there.

I mean, Dr. Reiner when the President actually gave a nod to this this afternoon, his comment was making a lot of progress with the whole situation, but we have a lot of work to do. But he did not attend the briefing. Instead, he was tweeting about those Confederate monuments.

So, you know, the Vice President there was talking about all of the encouraging news, again, his words talking about coronavirus. So, what do you make of this? And I guess, specifically the President's refusal to be there.

DR. JONATHAN REINER, CNN MEDICAL ANALYST: Yes, the President in that tweet about the monuments seems to be more interested in protecting long-dead Confederate raiders than he is in protecting Americans right now.

Yes, I was really appalled when the Vice President today said, well, we've all heard the encouraging news. The encouraging news, really? There have been 125,000 funerals. It's the equivalent of three jumbo jets full of Americans crashing every day, and we hear, we've all heard the encouraging news.

What I want to hear the plan to fix this, and the plan is social distancing, universal facemasks, ramping up testing, and selective closing of municipalities when the virus is surging. That's the plan, and that's what our leaders should be saying to this public, not we've all seen the encouraging news -- I'm really tired of this sycophantic bout.

BURNETT: Well, I mean, it is stunning too that even when their own Taskforce has said that masks are equivalent to a vaccine, the Vice President of the United States didn't even have the courage to state the fact that the people should be wearing masks.

I mean, you know, it is the sort of thing that's incensing.

Sanjay, a source close to the White House Coronavirus Taskforce told you that a real schism has developed over the issue of testing. So, I just wanted to play something Dr. Fauci said about testing in an interview earlier today.


DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: No way is it good news when you think there are ten times more people infected than you thought there were.

So, I think that's something that we need to address which gets to what i was saying of things that I brought up actually months ago to consider start literally flooding the system with testing so you really get a good handle about what is going on in the community.


BURNETT: so, Sanjay, just to take a step back here, a lot of people do think it is good news that you had ten times more people infected. And they think it is good news because more people have had it and because it takes the death rate down. Explain why that is wrong.


GUPTA: No, that part of it is true. If you have a lot more people out there who have had the infection and didn't know it, they didn't have much in the way of symptoms -- that will bring the death rate down.

What Dr. Fauci is talking about and what the schism is about, I think, is the fact we have not really gotten the testing right in this country. We're sort of extrapolating the numbers you just provided, right?

The reality is we kind of -- the C.D.C. acknowledges -- and this has been well documented -- screwed up testing in the beginning. It wasn't a good test that was released. We got way behind as a result of not having good testing in the beginning. That we know. The question is now. Middle end of June, why don't we still not have

the widespread sort of breakthrough in testing that the Taskforce themselves were talking about two months ago, antigen-type testing that people could even have in their homes or at least easily available, give you quick results.

I mean, there's been these questions like how do you do that? Could you do it and have accurate results? What my sources have told me, they said, look, we have had some of the best scientists in the world at our disposal. How have we still not figured out how to get widely available rapid accurate testing?

Because if you do that, Erin, it would be like, you could get tested on a regular basis and we could start to have some of our lives back. We would still need to do the things that Dr. Reiner has been talking about, obviously, the masks and the physical distancing, but that would go a long way.

And the fact that the C.D.C. hasn't done that, I think is a source of some of this friction.

BURNETT: Right. I mean, I needed to test recently for something I was doing. They wanted to make sure I had one. I went. It was hours long wait to get one. If you wanted to wait in line with people, some of whom were visibly sick, then you'd have to wait three to five days.

That's me going in New York. That's now. I mean, I think that might surprise people to hear that.

Dr. Reiner, I want to show you a tweet today from Congressman Liz Cheney. It's a father of her father, your long time patient, the former Vice President Dick Cheney, wearing the mask with the caption Dick Cheney says wear the mask, #realmenwearmasks.

Obviously, you know, the former Vice President well. He wanted to send a message.

REINER: Well, see me wear masks more times than we both would care to remember. So, I think that's how he really got the thought that real men wear masks.

I was really glad to see that. There are a lot of people that really listened to the former Vice President. Parts of this country where the virus is raging, in places like Texas, is Cheney country. They've lived in Texas for a long time and he is modeling the behavior that we'd like to see.

So, I was proud of him, and real men do wear masks.

BURNETT: They sure do. Thank you both very much.

OUT FRONT next, the most populous county in Texas under its highest state of alert tonight. Everyone is now urged to stay home except for essential needs. So, what's really happening in Houston? A doctor on the front lines is my guest.

And it's a simple question, what is President Trump's agenda for his second term?


TRUMP: But I didn't know very many people in Washington. It wasn't my thing. I was from Manhattan, from New York. Now I know everybody.


BURNETT: That was his answer to the question about the second term. Why would that be your answer?

And breaking news, President Trump just tweeting he has signed a quote, "very strong Executive Order" to protect monuments including those Confederate statues.



BURNETT: Tonight one official says hospitals in Harris County, Texas, the most populous county in the state and home to Houston could see capacity out in one to three weeks which comes as officials put the county under its highest threat alert as coronavirus cases surge there. Erica Hill is OUT FRONT.


LINA HIDALGO, HARRIS COUNTY, TEXAS JUDGE: Today, we find ourselves careening toward a catastrophic and unsustainable situation.


ERICA HILL, CNN ANCHOR AND NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Harris County, Texas elevating its public threat level to red, the highest level urging people to stay home, banning large outdoor gatherings.


HIDALGO: The outbreaks are worsening. Our public health capacity is strained or exceeded. Healthcare surge is not only likely, but is already in progress.


HILL (voice over): Governor Greg Abbott pausing the state's reopening, closing bars and cutting restaurants back to 50 percent occupancy as new cases continue to surge.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Pausing will not make things better.


HILL (voice over): Staggering numbers in Florida, nearly 9,000 new cases reported on Friday. Governor Ron DeSantis says the spike is simply result of more testing.


GOV. RON DESANTIS (R-FL): Really nothing has changed in the past week.


HILL (voice over): The state banning on-site alcohol consumption at bars, Friday, one of at least 11 states now rolling back or pausing reopening plans.


GOV. GAVIN NEWSOM (D-CA): You will see with the death rates, they're lagging.


HILL (voice over): The Vice President painting a much different picture.


PENCE: We're in a much stronger place. The truth is we did slow the spread. We flattened the curve.


HILL (voice over): The curve is actually going up. Nearly 40,000 new cases recorded on Thursday, an all-time high and a new peak. Thirty two states moving in the strong direction over the past week.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's 20 percent positivity in tests taken in Arizona.


HILL (voice over): Just 12 percent of Arizona's ICU beds were available on Thursday. Of those in use, nearly 40 percent occupied by COVID-19 patients.


FAUCI: If we don't extinguish the outbreak, sooner or later even ones that are doing well are going to be vulnerable to the spread.


HILL (voice over): The White House Taskforce now considering pool testing, combining multiple samples to find and isolate infections more quickly because in the words of Dr. Anthony Fauci, something is not working.

While no state is in the clear, it is a sharply different story in the northeast where plans for in-person learning are now on the table in several states.


MAYOR BILL DE BLASIO (D-NY), NEW YORK CITY: The maximum number of kids that can be in school -- that is our goal.


HILL (voice over): As officials cautiously watch the spread.


GOV. CHARLIE BAKER (R-MA): If anyone thinks this is over, I would just ask them to take a look at the data coming out of a lot of the states in the south and the southwest.



HILL: One of those states in the south to keep an eye on, one of those that opened early is South Carolina where today we learned the highest number of hospitalizations were reported and the second highest day for cases in that state.

Governor McMaster says hospitals are at 75 percent capacity. When they hit 80 percent, that's when they go into surge capacity.

Younger people among the positive cases, under 40, specifically that 30 to 35 demographic. But when it comes to masks, the Governor said again, he will not mandate them in the state calling a statewide mandate impractical, and saying, Erin that it would be tough to enforce.

BURNETT: All right, thank you very much, Erica. I want to go now to Dr. Hilary Fairbrother, an emergency room doctor is Houston. Doctor, I appreciate your time. So you're in Harris County tonight, now under the highest threat level due to the spike in virus cases that you've seen there.

Tell me what it's like. When you're in the ER, what are you seeing?

DR. HILARY FAIRBROTHER, HOUSTON EMERGENCY MEDICINE PHYSICIAN: The ERs are full. My ER is -- both the public and private emergency departments are full. Patients are waiting for beds. The general feeling is one of tension and over-arching concern. People are worried. People are stressed.

BURNETT: So, you're talking about the ERs are full, people waiting for beds. I know hospitalizations at record highs in the State of Texas. Again, where you are in Houston, Harris County, the top official there says they have less than a week to three weeks before they run out of all hospital capacity. Are you worried about that happening?

FAIRBROTHER: I think everybody is worried about that running out of resources when it comes to taking care of patients during this incredible spike that we seem to be in the middle of.

We don't really know how high the number of cases will go and if our resources that are limited will be outstripped by the need and by the number of patients who are sick.

Right now, I can tell you that we are blessed in Houston. We have a giant Texas Medical Center. We have an ability to surge like almost nowhere else that has ever -- almost like nowhere else in the country. So, because of that, we do have the ability to increase beds.

Our Children's Hospital is admitting patients who are under 30. We have our Cancer Hospital that is admitting patients who are sick who also have a cancer diagnosis.

We're really doing everything to really take care of everyone the absolute best way possible, but everyone is worried that we're not going to have enough.

I don't necessarily know if it's going to happen. I'm cautiously optimistic that when the resources we have and with the new constraints put in place this week or here this week that we can hopefully see a down trend of cases within the next one to three weeks. But it is overwhelming to say the least.

BURNETT: How sick are the people who are coming in?

FAIRBROTHER: Honestly, we see a whole range of people who come into the Emergency Department. We do see very sick people with very low oxygen levels, and it's somewhat incredible to myself and to my colleagues as physicians.

We've never seen oxygen levels this low this commonly. That's something that's very special to coronavirus. And so we see patients who come in who are absolutely as sick as can be imagined and who are admitted to the ICU.

We see young people. We see otherwise healthy people who are sick, but are otherwise well and we are able to discharge them home. There is quite a spectrum of ages, of severity, all of it.

BURNETT: So, the governor of your state, Governor Abbott, I'm sorry, spoke earlier this week about facemasks. Here's what he said.


GOV. GREG ABBOTT (R-TX): I know that some people feel that wearing a mask is inconvenient or it is like an infringement of freedom. But I also know that wearing a mask will help us to keep Texas open.


BURNETT: Look, he is making his point of view there very clear, which I know is important. But obviously there is no mandate to wear masks in Texas. Should there be? Would it help?

FAIRBROTHER: You know, I have my Masters in Public Health and I always have an eye towards public health. I would love to see a mandate to everyone to wear a mask in the State of Texas or wherever there's an outbreak.

There's obviously the draconian and just awful measures of shutting down the economy, and we did that across the country. And then of course, you know, starting May 1st, Texas reopened. But I do find it a tragedy that we felt that economic toll and everyone has felt it.


FAIRBROTHER: It is a truly awful experience for this entire country like I've never imagined or seen in my lifetime. But at the same time, we did this, and once we started opening, we didn't mandate masking. We didn't mandate the social distancing that I do believe would have helped us avoid spikes like this.

And unfortunately, I haven't seen the -- I haven't seen when people are just left to their own devices without any kind of mandate or without any kind of consequence that those rules have really been followed.

And I don't think it's bad people, I think it's human nature. It's really hard to maintain the masking and the social distancing. It is not in our nature to be isolated like this. We want to see our loved ones. We want to leave our homes.

And we have to balance that. And I do think that we do need stricter rules in place so that we can keep our economy open.

BURNETT: All right. Well, I appreciate your time, Dr. Fairbrother. Thank you so much.


BURNETT: And next, new poll showing Trump trailing Biden in some crucial swing states.

So, you know, again we're months away, but these numbers are kind of everywhere right now. What do they mean?

And despite warning after warning, rising infections, why some Americans still do refuse to do the one thing that we know works best, wear a mask.


QUESTION: No matter the circumstances?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: No matter the circumstances. It should be up to you. You have a right to wear it or not wear it.



[19:30:38] BURNETT: Tonight, new warning signs for President Trump. There are new FOX News polls out tonight showing Joe Biden with a nine-point lead over Trump in Florida, and Biden ahead but in the margin of error in three other states Trump won in 2016, Georgia, North Carolina, and Texas.

This comes after the latest "New York Times"/Siena College polls also found Biden beating Trump in six swing states which Trump won in 2016 and by double digits in must-win states, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, which, of course, he won by less than a percentage point last time.

OUTFRONT now, the former Republican governor of Ohio, 2016 presidential candidate, John Kasich.

Governor, look, these are a slew of swing states we are now talking about. These are polls from various organizations. And they're showing the same thing in state after state.

How much do you -- I mean, look, we're months away and we're --


BURNETT: -- in a very unprecedented time. But how much do you read into this?

KASICH: I kind of feel as though he jumped the shark, Erin. That's the thing where the guy goes too far or person goes too far, they begin to lose the audience. The trip he made in front of that church was a disaster. That, I don't -- that rambling, whatever it was, down there in Tulsa didn't go well, and that long dissertation about why he had trouble walking down the ramp just left people shaking their head.

And then all this business about, you know, where is he on the masks? I can't figure out.

I mean, I think people -- look, he was elected I believe because a lot of people said let's shake it up. When you have the racial problems we have, the unrest, when you have the virus beginning to rear its ugly head again in a very spiking sort of a way, people begin to -- and you see the economy hurting, people begin to say enough of all that shaking it up, we need somebody who can manage.

So, it's going to be incumbent on Joe Biden to be able to convince people that he's got the stamina and the capability to do this. But when you mention Georgia, North Carolina, and Texas, I mean those are places that should be slam dunk for Republicans, but a lot of problems here. He's losing his -- he's losing, of course, the college-educated folks.

I think the other interesting thing is, Erin, I put a tweet about this last week. I think he's beginning to lose more and more people of faith who have about had it with the division, the name calling and all that.

BURNETT: Well, Texas, I mean just to put it out there, to your point, the last time Texas went Democratic was 1976. And it does come as "The Wall Street Journal" which of course, editorial of the "Wall Street Journal" conservative newspaper, coming out saying as of now President Trump has no more agenda than four more years of himself. To that point, the president's friend, Sean Hannity, gave him a really easy question that's night, right? I'm sure Sean thought this was -- this was not a problem.

Here's the exchange.


SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS HOST: What's at stake in this election as you compare and contrast, and what are your top priority items for a second term?

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Well, one of the things that will be really great, you know, the word experience is still good. I always say talent is more important than experience. I've always said that. But the word experience is a very important word. It's a very important meaning.

I never did this before. I never slept over in Washington. I was in Washington I think 17 times, all of a sudden, I'm president of the United States. You know the story. I'm riding down Pennsylvania Avenue with the first lady and I say, this is great.

But I didn't know very many people in Washington. It wasn't my thing. I was from Manhattan, from New York. Now I know everybody. And I have great people in the administration.

You make some mistakes like an idiot like Bolton, all he wanted to do was drop bombs on everybody. You don't have to drop bombs on everybody. You don't have to kill people.


BURNETT: OK. So, what do you make of that?

KASICH: Well, first of all, he fired all the really competent. I don't understand who's even in there or why they stay. Maybe they're trying to keep their finger in the dike or something.

But, you know, he had no agenda the last time, barely an agenda. Just I think yesterday or the day before, think about this, Erin, he filed a motion with the Supreme Court to kill the Accountable Care Act which would mean 20 million people would lose health insurance in the middle of this COVID.


You just -- I mean, what is he even thinking?

Then you'll have no healing on immigration. Our allies have just run the other way. And what they're praying is this is a momentary lapse of reason. I hate to quote Pink Floyd, but it's true. It's a momentary lapse of reason. They hope there's going to be change. So, I mean, when I hear him say there's no agenda, I believe it. I

don't think there is an agenda. There hasn't bun much of one.

A lot of people say, Erin, you know, they said, well, you know, I don't like his tweeting, everything, but he's had good policy, all right? Well, we had a tax cut. The economy did better but the deaths skyrocketed.

And then we see divisions in the country, and that's why I think people are beginning to say, you know, enough of this. Can we have a return to normalcy? See, I think this election is not going to be about this great vision for the future. It's about getting back to normal. And I think that's what Joe Biden has to communicate.

BURNETT: All right. Well, I appreciate your time. It's interesting you put it that way because I think we are all now thinking about normalcy in a way we would never have comprehended before, right? I mean, literally, normalcy, going out to dinner.

KASICH: Well, look --


BURNETT: Seeing your friends and family. I mean, people want their lives back. So --

KASICH: They do. They do. When they're worried about the economy, when they're worried about the unrest in the streets and when they worry about getting sick, they're like, I'm tired of experimenting. Give me somebody that can right the ship.

BURNETT: All right. I appreciate your time, Governor, as always. Thank you.

KASICH: Thanks Erin, very much.

BURNETT: And next, is Trump's response to a nation in crisis hurting him with his base at all?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If you ask me like five months ago, I'm going to say to you definitely Trump because he handle everything right. But now --


BURNETT: And President Trump signing an executive order tonight protecting conservative statues, confederate memorials. Ben Jealous, former president of the NAACP, my guest, to tell you something you probably didn't know about those statues.



BURNETT: New tonight, the House Democrats sending Republicans for refusing to wear masks during a hearing today on coronavirus.

Jim Jordan has been not wearing a mask.


REP. JAMES CLYBURN (D-SC), MAJORITY LEADER: I grew up believing that the first sign of a good education is good manners. I think it's good manners to look out for your fellow men. I see all the staff wearing masks. I know what this is.


BURNETT: It is really bizarre in so many ways because obviously most Republicans are wearing masks on Capitol Hill. Republican governors even are coming out saying wear masks, but they're refusing to mandate them despite a surging number of cases.

Miguel Marquez is OUTFRONT in Florida.


MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The Sunshine State in state of crisis. The number of coronavirus infections climbing at alarming rates with Florida reporting nearly 9,000 new cases, its highest single day to date.

Cities like Hollywood now mandating masks be worn in public, even outdoors, except when exercising.

LISA FEINTUCH, WEARS MASK EXCEPT WHEN EXERCISING: I do think for the safety of everybody, especially with the numbers rising here, just do it. It's selfish not to.

TINA LAPRE, WEARS MASK ONLY AT WORK: I think it should be up to you, honestly.

MARQUEZ (on camera): No matter the circumstances?

LAPRE: No matter the circumstances. It should be up to you. It's your right to wear it or not wear it.

MARQUEZ: Except it you could give it to someone and it could kill them.

LAPRE: That's -- I mean, that's life. At this point, I mean, I can also give someone the common cold. I could also give someone the flu, right?

MARQUEZ: Except those maybe don't have as high a death rate.

LAPRE: I think it's a little overrated.

MARQUEZ (voice-over): While some see government mask orders as infringing on their rights, officials here once confident they had beat the virus are scrambling to contain it. New infections skyrocketing, Thursday statewide 13 percent of those

tested came back positive. In Osceola County, near Orlando, 23 percent positive for the virus.

In Lee County, Fort Myers, nearly 20 percent positive. In Miami-Dade County, 14 percent positive, and here in Broward, nearly 12 percent positive. All way too high.

MAYOR JOSH LEVY, HOLLYWOOD, FLORIDA: Right now, our -- in Florida, we're doing this. You know, the gating criteria really supposed to be doing downward. So, as long as you maintain and go downward, sure you can keep reopening. But so -- for now, it's paused.

MARQUEZ: Hollywood paused at the first stage of reopening.

Look, the mask order is a good thing, she says, because it protects me, my employees and my customers.

As wearing mask has become increasingly political, driven largely by the president and his handling of the crisis, even some supporters are beginning to question his judgment and their vote.

OZIEL ELIAC, VOTED FOR TRUMP: You ask me five months ago, I'm going to said you definitely Trump because he handle everything right. But now, with all --

MARQUEZ (on camera): Because of the pandemic.

ELIAC: The pandemic and also Black Lives Matter and all those what happened now, it's complicated now.

MARQUEZ (voice-over): Miguel Marquez, CNN, Hollywood, Florida.


BURNETT: And next, President Trump saying he is no longer going to his golf club in New Jersey this weekend so that he can ensure law and order is enforced.

And dash cam video capturing the three sheriff's deputies of Tennessee striking a black man while handcuffed. Why? What was the story here?



BURNETT: Breaking news, President Trump signing an executive order protecting national monuments including confederate statues. The president tweeting, quote: Long prison terms for these lawless acts against our great country.

OUTFRONT now, Ben Jealous, former president of the NAACP and president of the People for the American Way.

So, Ben, the president, you know, today tweeting this FBI notice for people suspected of trying to vandalize the statue of Andrew Jackson. He posted it while his coronavirus task force was holding the first public briefing in many weeks.

So, why is the president so fixated on the issue of Confederate statues?

BEN JEALOUS, PRESIDENT, PEOIPLE FOR THE AMERICAN WAY AND FOUNDATION: You know, he's become a weapon of mass distraction. He's doubling down because he's scared. What's happening is that moderate voters have begun to move away from him en masse as his racism has become more and more apparent and more and more frankly part of what he shows us every day.

He chooses and appears to double down on his base, tried to motivate them, sending signals that he's there, for instance, to protect confederate monuments. Of course what he can never do is stop local people, local leaders, from actually having those monuments taken down and replaced.


And it seems like a movement is building to do just that.

BURNETT: So, the president then also saying he's cancelled his trip to his New Jersey golf club this weekend where he likes to go on the weekends. He says he's doing that to ensure law and order and enforced, which I don't know what that means but I do know New Jersey has a 14-day quarantine for people who are coming from hot spot states, Ben, including ones the president visited earlier this week, Arizona.

The president's arrival will bring a host of people right in those states like Secret Service agents, right? We know some of them and his advanced team tested positive for the virus after Oklahoma. But not even acknowledging that, right, saying he's going to enforce law -- or make sure law and order is enforced.

JEALOUS: You know, what's most important is what the president is not talking about. We've seen the biggest surge of COVID cases in one day ever, 20,000 plus in cases. Vice President Pence has been out there celebrating governors who are reopening, in the midst of this. They are completely tone deaf.

And the president, again, just keeps kind of going to his base trying to inflame them, bashing cities. Acting like he's a sheriff of Washington when he's the president of the United States and we need him to lead on this pandemic and he's not doing it.

BURNETT: Ben, I wanted to give you a chance on this issue of the confederate statute. You said something the other day, that -- I just wanted to give you a chance to explain more. When people say that some of these are relics of history and that you don't just, you know, erase history, that you keep it there and they have reasons.

You were saying they were put up to begin with as part of a propaganda, their initial intent was propaganda. Can you explain? I want to make sure people heard you. JEALOUS: Sure, I would encourage people to Google Mayor Mitch

Landrieu's speech on these Confederate monuments, it's about 20 minutes and he lays it out in a impressive way. In short, there was a movement known as the Movement of the Lost Cause that was brought by the descendants of Confederate soldiers early in the 20th century to rewrite history. And that movement contained multiple propaganda planks and included movies like "Birth of a Nation" that completely lied about black people in an inflammatory way which credited with recruiting people to the Ku Klux Klan.

And part of it was these monuments, and the only part that stood the test of time is these monuments. When you tear down these monuments, when you have them taken down legally, rather, these confederate monuments, you're finally ending a failed campaign by the descendants of Confederates.

BURNETT: All right. Ben, appreciate your time. Thank you.

JEALOUS: Thank you very much.

BURNETT: And next, a new case of a black man shouting "I can't breathe" as three sheriff's deputies are seen striking him while he's handcuffed. What's the story behind this? That's next.



BURNETT: Tonight, new and disturbing video from Tennessee where a dash camera shows three sheriff's deputies repeatedly striking a black man in handcuffs with their batons. The man at one point shouting "I can't breathe".

Martin Savidge is OUTFRONT with a story here and a warning that some of the video you will see in this piece is disturbing.


MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Newly released video from outside Chattanooga shows Hamilton County sheriff's deputies stopping and talking to 32-year-old Reginald Herrington Jr.

They take him into custody for illegally walking on a road way as they lead him in handcuffs to a vehicle, a struggle begins. Herrington collapses with one deputy on top of him and three others begin striking him with their batons.

For over five minutes, the officers beat and hold Herrington on the ground. Herrington is charged with resisting arrest and assault on police officers, one of the deputies accusing him of reaching for his gun.

But after reviewing the video from May 23rd, which he makes public, the Hamilton District Attorney General Neal Pinkston drops all charges and requests the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation investigate deputies for possible excessive use of force, calling what he saw in the video troubling.

Regional head of the union representing the deputies defended their actions as the force necessary to make the arrest.

VINCE CHAMPION, INTERNATIONAL BROTHERHOOD OF POLICE OFFICERS: Ninety- five percent of every video you've seen of a police involved arrest or shooting, it doesn't look good. I mean, our job just doesn't look good on video.

POLICE OFFICER: Hey, you got your I.D. on you?


SAVIDGE: In Valdosta, Georgia, there is no question about this arrest. Police have the wrong man.

Back in February, according to his attorney, Antonio Arnelo Smith is stopped by police after a call of a man harassing people for money. On body camera video, Smith denies he's done anything wrong and compiles with instructions for his I.D.

The video shows another officer approaching from behind wrapping his arms around Smith then slamming him to the ground.

SMITH: What are you doing?

SAVIDGE: On the ground and in pain, Smith asks why he's being arrested.

SMITH: What are you guys arresting me for?

POLICE OFFICER: You have a warrant.

POLICE OFFICER: That's him or the other guy.

POLICE OFFICER: The other guy is over there. They pointed out two different people. They got the guy with the warrant.

SAVIDGE: It was a violent mistake. The takedown Smith suffers a broken wrist according to his attorney.

Now he's suing the police department for $700,000. The attorney for the city of Valdosta declined comment.

It's cases like these that spark a growing national debate about police, excessive use of force and people of color who often suffer as a result.

Martin Savidge, CNN, Atlanta.


BURNETT: That was hard to watch.

Well, I thank all of you for watching and we'll see you on Monday.

Anderson starts now.