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As Pandemic Situation Worsens, Pence Paints Deceptively Rosy Picture; U.S. States Sound Alarm amid Record Cases; U.S. Travelers Unlikely to be Allowed into E.U.; Florida Governor Will "Trust People to Make Good Decisions" on Masks as Cases Hit Record High; F1 Star Lewis Hamilton Launches Commission on Motorsport Inequality; Trump Administration Has No Plans To Expedite Harriet Tubman on the $20 Bill. Aired 5-6a ET

Aired June 27, 2020 - 05:00   ET




NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): The White House is painting a rosy picture of how coronavirus is being handled but the soaring numbers tell a very different story.

If you were hoping to travel from the United States to Europe this summer, think again. U.S. visitors are expected to be banned from visiting, starting next week.

And "sad and disappointed" race driver Lewis Hamilton reacts to a shocking CNN interview with former Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone on the issue of racism.

Welcome to our viewers here in the United States and all around the world, this is CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Natalie Allen.


ALLEN: 5:00 am here on the East Coast and the U.S. Thanks so much for joining us.

More than 45,000 new cases of coronavirus were confirmed in the United States on Friday, an all-time high for a single day. And the death toll since February, now 125,000 and climbing, all of which adds up to remarkable progress, according to U.S. vice president Mike Pence.

After two months of silence, the leader of the White House Coronavirus Task Force briefed reporters Friday with a string of make-believe accomplishments.


MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: All 50 states and territories across this country are opening up safely and responsibly.

(END VIDEO CLIP) ALLEN: That simply isn't true. The virus is gaining ground now in more than 30 states; 11 governors are putting the brakes on reopening any further and at least two have sounded a retreat.

Europe is watching the U.S. closely to keep the virus from resurging there. The E.U. is now considering rolling up the welcome mat to visitors from coronavirus hot spots such as the United States.

Medical professionals and local governments across America are exasperated by the White House's stubborn deafness to reality, even on something as common sense as face masks.

And because the Trump administration insists on pushing an alternative narrative that ignores science, there's growing fear this unprecedented health crisis is about to get much worse. For more, here's CNN's Erica Hill.


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

ERICA HILL, CNN 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.

Staggering numbers in Florida. Nearly 9,000 new cases reported on Friday. Governor Ron DeSantis says the spike is simply a result of more testing.

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

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

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 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, 32 states moving in the wrong direction over the past week.

MAYOR REGINA ROMERO (D-AZ), TUCSON: 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.


DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: 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 task force now considering pool testing, combining multiple samples to find and isolate infections more quickly because, in the words of Dr. Anthony Fauci, something's not working.

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

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The maximum number of kids who can be in school, that is a goal.

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

GOV. CHARLIE BAKER (R-MA): For anybody who 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, South Carolina, reporting its highest day for hospitalizations and second highest day for new case counts on Friday. Hospitals are currently at 75 percent capacity in South Carolina. Once they hit 80 percent, the governor says that's when they need to move into surge capacity.

In terms of who is getting infected, the governor says it's been mostly people under 40, particularly, the 30- to 35-year-old age group. The state's public health director urging anyone who's been to the beach to get tested.

But on the question of masks, do not look for a mandate in that state. The governor saying a statewide mandate would not only be impractical but it is too tough to enforce -- Erica Hill, CNN, New York.


ALLEN: You just heard vice president Mike Pence speaking during Friday's task force briefing, the first in almost two months. Here's CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta to explain why some of the vice president's claims were contradictory and even misleading.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Watching that press briefing really did feel like an alternate reality versus what happens on the ground in the United States.

If you look at the graphic, we can see how much things have changed since the last Coronavirus Task Force briefing. The numbers are going up. Now at the highest level they've been, in terms of new infections since the pandemic began.

I think when you have a Coronavirus Task Force meeting for the first time in two months, they would address these concerns, hotspots and present plans forward. There wasn't any of that. It was more of a minimizing of the current state of affairs. Vice president saying that all 50 states are opening safely and responsibly; that's not true.

We know several states have put the pause on reopening, so concerned are they about the new infections in their states. We heard there was 45 days of slowing the spread. There was a downturn for a little bit. But the lowest number of cases in this country, about 17,000 cases at June 1st.

Is that the best we can do?

They said they greatly expanded the testing. The reality is, whatever the testing is, it's still not enough in this country. If you look at the road maps to recovery, they talk about 5 million tests per day. Right now we're at about 500,000.

And the idea of testing has caused some flashpoints, even within the Coronavirus Task Force, according to some new reporting. The CDC didn't have an effective test released initially. There's been a lot of criticism for that, well reported.

But the concern is now middle, end of June, we still don't have enough testing. We still don't have enough antigen testing, quick, reliable testing that could help the country reopen. And I think there's a lot of frustration among task force members that that hasn't happened.

So the first task force briefing in over two months. And what we were left with was a spin, trying to paint a rosier picture than the situation actually is in the United States. And sadly, no new plans going forward.



ALLEN: Joining me now is virologist Dr. Muhammad Munir from Lancaster University in England.

Good morning.


ALLEN: One expert likened the situation in the U.S. as a four-alarm fire. ICUs are being filled again. The administration remains tone deaf, without a master plan to address this.

How does the U.S. put out this fire?

MUNIR: Yes, absolutely. I think (INAUDIBLE) when the number of cases are going up and up again. And going at the scale that had never seen during the coronavirus pandemic.

That's primarily due to premature opening up economies and also mixed messages from (INAUDIBLE) stakeholders, including government and the researchers.


MUNIR: At this point, the critical point is to revisit the whole scenario, going back in the state where we have been before and ramping up the capability.

I know the ICU would be under immense pressure (INAUDIBLE) and get closer from the initial infection to the sickness. But I think the good point is that probably the most (INAUDIBLE) are little more (INAUDIBLE) than in the first place (ph).

ALLEN: From the very beginning, the United States has lagged behind in testing.

Is it too late to ramp up testing in these hot spots?

MUNIR: Not really. Every time there's a new cluster or emergency, there's a need for the testing and to improve the existing testing There's never been late for improving the testing capabilities.

Now as a number of increases the need for testing, (INAUDIBLE). So I think it is an urgent need to revisit the whole scenario and reamplify the capability. And learning from the previous experience, as we know. In the beginning, there were a few glitches into the testing.

So certainly, there's a great need and probably the most important time, now, to really test and isolate people before it comes into the situation where the U.S. has been before.

ALLEN: You say that just days after President Trump said what we need is less testing. I want to talk to you about what a doctor in Houston said. They are days before running out of capacity. Then they'll have to tell sick people to stay home. Tell us what hospitals will be up against yet again.

MUNIR: I don't see by any means that the testing need to be reduced. Yes, you can test less but that would not identify cases. The test is there to identify how much the infection is there. If the infection is there, it would be detected. And if not, it would not.

Getting back to the hospitalizations and the capabilities, this is a grim situation. Every effort should be put in place. This is the only situation where Africa has done better than America. It would be a shame if the coronavirus would go out of control in the second wave.

ALLEN: What do you make of this administration's blase attitude toward wearing masks?

The medical community is literally begging people to wear masks.

MUNIR: Certainly, that's another information that's confused people from the beginning. At the government level, it's a chance to advise or mediate. I'm not in a position to take the masks on. Between this and the politicians, the public has been in that critical stage.

And now, even, according to my information, some states are positive to have the mask, while others are not. That's the role of international organizations to really make a unanimous decision that all countries in certain situations, has to wear masks (INAUDIBLE).

ALLEN: That's another challenge in a country with 50 states and every state is going its own way on this.

Let's look for a bright spot here. Talk about the gains that people have made with months of experience in dealing with this.

Will people getting sick have a better chance?

MUNIR: Yes. We have learned a lot six, seven months into this pandemic. That includes what are the treatments that have been working. Now we have two drugs that are relatively better. Dexamethasone and remdesivir, although that's a little bit difficult to catch. But we can count on it. Probably the ventilators are not that critical, a shortage. So learning from the previous experiences and building onto the infrastructure, there are some good signs that we can count on.


ALLEN: Muhammad Munir with Lancaster University in England, we always appreciate your time and expertise. Thank you very much.

MUNIR: Thank you very much for having me.


ALLEN: Well, due to the alarming number of cases in the United States of coronavirus, the European Union may not be allowing American travelers in this summer. We'll have a report about that, coming up here.




ALLEN: Americans hoping to take a post-lockdown holiday in Europe this summer might end up being disappointed. Diplomats tell CNN U.S. travelers may not be allowed in, according to the European Union. The problem, America's COVID-19 high infection rate.

As we've been reporting, the U.S. on Friday posted its biggest single day rise in cases. Taking a diplomatic approach, the United States State Department says it appreciates the E.U.'s transparency. For more, here's CNN's Kylie Atwood at the State Department.


KYLIE ATWOOD, CNN U.S. SECURITY ANALYST: Most travelers from the United States are unlikely to visit the E.U. when they open up their borders to international travelers next month.


ATWOOD: Now this was an agreement made by the ambassadors to the E.U. from their countries.

This is effectively a reflection of the fact that the United States has a growing number of coronavirus cases. One of the things they looked at is the rate of coronavirus cases in these countries.

That's why they decided that the U.S. was one of the countries where they would keep travelers from being able to visit the E.U. countries. Another country where they'll keep travelers out from is Russia. There's a whole host of countries that can visit the E.U., including Canada and Australia.

Earlier in the week, secretary of state Mike Pompeo said he had been talking with his counterparts all around the world, including in the E.U., to determine safe travel protocol. And he acknowledged that the U.S. didn't want to create problems elsewhere -- Kylie Atwood, CNN, the State Department.


ALLEN: Let's talk about this with Simon Calder, a travel editor for "The Independent," he joins me live from London. Good morning, Simon, thanks for coming on.

SIMON CALDER, "THE INDEPENDENT": Good morning, I'm here at London's Gatwick Airport, which has been, on the last Saturday in June, incredibly busy, it's the busiest single-runway airport in the world with many, many flights to Florida and other parts of the U.S.

But for the last three months it's been moribund, there's simply nothing happening here. We have actually heard, just in the past few hours in the U.K., that foreign travel is once again going to be allowed from Britain but very carefully.

There is no mention that the U.S. could be among the destinations that we will be traveling to anymore soon. And furthermore, as you say, Europe is looking very closely at the record of the United States in handling coronavirus. And it's not liking what it sees.

And with the U.S. currently warning against all Europeans coming to America, it's a real kind of diplomatic standoff with no easy way out.

ALLEN: Yes. I want you to characterize this move. This is a big deal.


ALLEN: And in some ways, it's kind of a slap at the United States, maybe deservedly so.

CALDER: Well, I couldn't speculate on that. But certainly, a great concern in Brussels that while the health indicators make this absolutely clear, that Russia, the U.S., Brazil and Mexico should all be on the kind of red list, they realize that, particularly with the current occupant at the White House, there might well be some unexpected retaliation.

And effectively, the E.U. doesn't want to get embroiled in what a lot of people here in Europe are calling kind of the American presidential issues. They fear that it's all getting tied up in a very difficult way.

They simply want to help Europe continue on its path toward recovery from coronavirus. That means excluding some people. But I'm afraid it does look as though it's going to get into quite a tricky and dramatic tussle.

ALLEN: Very well could be. Let's talk about the impact here on businesses, on tourism, Simon.

CALDER: It's extraordinary. Look, Florida, this time of year, I'll tell you, it's normally extraordinarily popular with British people. And London should be benefiting from many, many thousands of Americans coming in to fill the top hotels.

That is sadly not happening this year; sorry, this summer. There's talk there will not be any vacation taking place, maybe not even any business travel, until later in the autumn. Some people are saying, well, one big company in Europe, a company called TUI, said, OK, no more holidays to Florida. No more vacations until December at the earliest, which, of course, will be after the presidential election.

ALLEN: You're there at Gatwick Airport.

How soon are airlines looking at getting back into the air again?


CALDER: American Airlines, one of the top airlines in the U.K., had planned on the 20th of July a special flight -- it would actually go to Heathrow, an express flight and its restart would be to Orlando, in Florida. That has now been postponed by at least a month.

British Airways and, of course, American, United, Delta, very, very dependent on U.K. and U.S. links. Those effectively, although flights are still going, kind of very essential travel, you're not going to see anything like the levels you might expect for many months.

And that is yet going to cause more damage to the long-suffering airline and the wider traveling industry.

ALLEN: It's a tremendous problem and so many different aspects of it as well. We'll continue to follow this development for sure. Simon Calder, we appreciate your insights, thank you.

CALDER: Thank you.

ALLEN: Coming up, physical freedom versus public health playing out in Florida where the virus is on an alarming rise. Why it's looking so grim.

Also here, Texas seeing a dangerous spike in coronavirus cases. We'll find out what government officials are doing to try and stop the spread.




ALLEN: Welcome back to our viewers here in the U.S. and around the world, I'm Natalie Allen, this is CNN NEWSROOM.

The governors of at least 11 U.S. states are slamming their brakes on reopening as COVID-19 cases skyrockets. Friday alone confirmed 45,000 new cases among Americans. That is a one-day record.


ALLEN: And the death toll, it has surpassed 125,000. Against this backdrop, the White House Coronavirus Task Force gave its first public briefing in two months. U.S. Vice president Mike Pence had nothing but praise for the administration's response. Contrast that with Dr. Anthony Fauci's tough love.


MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We want the American people to understand it's almost inarguable that more testing is generating more cases. To one extent or another, the volume of new cases coming in is a reflection of a great success in expanding testing across the country.



DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: You have an individual responsibility to yourself. But you have a societal responsibility. Because if we want to end this outbreak, really end it and then hopefully when the vaccine comes and puts the nail in the coffin, we've got to realize that we are part of the process.


ALLEN: A federal judge has ruled the U.S. government must release migrant children from family detention centers in Texas and Pennsylvania. The ruling is part of an effort to deal with immigrants who are considered particularly susceptible to coronavirus.

At last count, earlier this month, there were more than 120 of the children in custody. The order says they must be released to their parents or available, suitable sponsors by mid-July. About 750 detainees in custody have tested positive.

The state of Florida is experiencing a spike in new cases. Just on Friday, the state reported almost 9,000 new cases, bringing the total number to almost 123,000 and deaths in Florida to more than 3,300. The mayor of Miami had this to say about the latest surge.


MAYOR FRANCIS SUAREZ (R-FL), MIAMI: Well, we're very concerned. We hit 1,500 cases today. You know, that's three times what I call the high water mark of March, which was 533. So we're at 300 percent greater of new cases than we were back in March.

The state of Florida, 89,000, is seven times greater than the high water mark was, with 1,300 cases in March. So it's incredibly concerning.


ALLEN: Florida's governor says nothing has changed in his state in the past week, regarding the coronavirus pandemic. But some cities are reacting to this latest surge by making the wearing of face masks in public mandatory. CNN's Miguel Marquez reports from 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: Those maybe don't have as high a death rate.

LAPRE: I think it's a little over rated.

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 Dade County, Miami, 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, TRUMP VOTER: 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: The governor of Florida, Ron DeSantis, saying two things; for the most part, it's younger people that they are seeing test positive in recent days, suggesting it's just as serious because they can give it to older people and it can make them very ill or kill them.

They're only seeing more positive cases because they're doing more testing. While that makes sense on some level, remember, this is the percentage of positive cases. Whether it's 100 or 100,000 people being tested, that rate of positivity is going up at a very, very sharp rate.

The governor not ringing the alarm bell here. But many cities and counties across the state of Florida see this as a public health crisis. Back to you. (END VIDEOTAPE)

ALLEN: The coronavirus situation in Texas is dire and officials are taking action to try to slow the spread there. In the past four days, the state has confirmed more than 23,000 new cases. And on Friday it surpassed more than 5,000 hospitalizations for the first time.

The dangerous surge is prompting the governor to pause reopening the state. CNN's Alexandra Field is in Houston.


ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A major turnaround in Texas, as COVID-19 cases soar. Governor Abbott, one of the first to open up is walking it back.

Bars must close but can still guarantee deliver. New restrictions on restaurant capacity and additional limits on outdoor crowds. Houston is now a hot spot. Some local officials want the governor to do more.

HIDALGO: There's no evidence out there to show that anything short of a stay-at-home order will do. We have between 10 to 30 days before we get to capacity.

FIELD (voice-over): Here in Harris County, the countries' third largest county, the local COVID warning system is raised to its highest level, severe, indicating an uncontrolled outbreak, a strain on testing and tracing and a recommendation for people to stay home. Texas continues to smash its daily record of new confirmed cases. Hospitalizations have been climbing since June.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We see a trend towards a younger population both in our community testing and who is being admitted to our hospitals.

FIELD (voice-over): Some health officials blame the state's early reopening.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was a layered effect. So first restaurants at some percentage. Then gyms and hair salons. And then, bars and restaurants. Mother's Day, on top of that, Memorial Day and the marches and you have had other graduations.

FIELD (voice-over): A pop-up hospital in a Houston parking lot earlier could soon reopen inside the NRG Center, home to the Houston Texans.

This virus is out of control in Houston. If we don't act to get it under control, extremely bad things will happen, sickness, death, our economy progressively getting shut in.

FIELD (voice-over): A city that thought the worst was behind them, facing an even greater challenge -- Alexandra Field, CNN, Houston, Texas.


ALLEN: President Trump refuses to wear a mask in public but safety protocols aimed at protecting him have been scaled up dramatically. Tests are administered to anyone who will be anywhere near him.

Venues are inspected for possible contamination; even bathrooms are sanitized. All this as several staffers involved with Trump's rally last weekend have tested positive and dozens of Secret Service personnel have been told to quarantine.

Facebook promises tougher action on hate speech on its platform after an advertiser's boycott seems to have threatened Facebook's bottom line. The social media giant has been criticized for inaction on controversial Trump posts.

But on Friday, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Facebook will now label controversial content and tighten advertising policies. He added, we want to do more to prohibit the kind of divisive and inflammatory rhetoric that has been used to sow discord.

The companies that you see here and others have pulled their ads from Facebook. One critic called Zuckerberg's latest promises "11 minutes of wasted opportunity."


ALLEN: Just ahead, F1 racing star Lewis Hamilton is condemning what Bernie Ecclestone said in a CNN interview, why the six-time world champion says the former F1 boss' comments were ignorant and uneducated.

And later, an abolitionist and civil rights champion was set to grace U.S. currency this year. We'll find out why that's not happening anytime soon.




ALLEN: Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton said he is sad and disappointed to have read the comments made to CNN by former F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone on the subject of racism and equality.

The six-time world champion posted on Instagram that he acknowledged seeing CNN's interview with Ecclestone and that the former F1 boss represents a different generation, who are ignorant and educated about race equality. Here's some of CNN's Amanda Davies' conversation with the former Formula 1 boss, asking whether F1 should have done more to tackle racism.


BERNIE ECCLESTONE, FORMER FORMULA 1 CHIEF EXECUTIVE: I don't think anyone bothered about it before. They were too busy trying to win races or find sponsors or something, as I said, really other things of little, if any, interest.

AMANDA DAVIES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: So, what impact do you think what Lewis has launched, the Hamilton Commission, what impact do you think that's going to have in real terms for Formula 1?

ECCLESTONE: I don't think it's going to do anything bad or good for Formula 1. It will make people think which is more important. I think that's the same for everybody.

People ought to think a little bit and say, what the hell, somebody is not the same -- same as white people. They're black people. They should think the same thing about white people. Because in a lot of cases, black people are more racist than what white people are.


DAVIES: What makes you say that?

ECCLESTONE: Well, I think over the years I have noticed that there -- and there's no need for it.

DAVIES: Is that not a case of fighting for equality and fighting against injustice for such a long time?

ECCLESTONE: Well, against injustice for anyone, whatever color they are. It's important to do something about it to stop. But I mean, I don't think you're going to easily change people's attitude. I think they need to start being taught at school to -- grow up, not think about these things.

I think it's completely stupid taking the statues down. They should have left them there, take the kids from school to say look and talk about how wrong it was what they did.

DAVIES: As somebody who was so integral to making Formula 1 what it is today, do you not want to see it as a sport leading the way and changing attitudes and portraying society as it is?

ECCLESTONE: Well, I suppose the people that -- they need to have their views. For the number of people directly involved in sport, such a small number of people who can do very little. I'm surprised if anyone in Formula 1, certainly the teams and the promoters have any concern about this. I think it's the public at large that have to start thinking.


ALLEN: Hamilton is the first and only black driver to compete in the sport. He reacted on his Instagram, saying this, "So sad and disappointing to read these comments. Bernie is out of the sport and a different generation. But this is exactly what is wrong. Ignorant and uneducated comments would show us how far, as a society, we need to go before real equality can happen."

Earlier on Friday, Formula 1 reacted to our interview by Ecclestone by issuing a statement of its own, saying this, "At a time when unity is needed to tackle racism and inequality, we completely disagree with Bernie Ecclestone's comments that have no place in Formula 1 or society. "Mr. Ecclestone has played no role in Formula 1 since he left our

organization in 2017. His title, chairman emeritus, being honorific, expired in January 2020."

A legendary abolitionist was set to have her image placed on the U.S. $20 bill this year but next we find out why the Trump administration says that will not likely happen for another decade.





ALLEN: On a day when the U.S. had a record spike in coronavirus cases, President Trump made his priorities clear. He tweeted on Friday that he had just signed an executive order protecting U.S. monuments. And he threatened 10 years in jail to anyone who vandalizes or destroys them.

But the order enforces an already existing law. One of those monuments includes a statue near the White House of the 19th century president Andrew Jackson. Protesters had tried to pull it down earlier in the week but police dispersed the crowd.

Jackson, the seventh U.S. president, is a hero of the current occupant of the White House. His picture is on the $20 U.S. bill. And it is clear the Trump administration is it in no rush to change the bank note and add the portrait of black abolitionist Harriet Tubman. For more on this, here's CNN's Laura Coates.


LAURA COATES, CNN LEGAL ANALYST (voice-over): It's a name the president often invokes, when talking about American heroes.

TRUMP: Harriet Tubman.

Harriet Tubman.

Harriet Tubman.

COATES (voice-over): But the president has stopped short of memorializing her heroism by replacing Andrew Jackson on the front of one of our most widely circulated currency notes, the $20 bill.

TRUMP: I think it's pure, political correctness. Andrew Jackson had a great history and I think it's very rough when you take somebody off the bill.

COATES (voice-over): First, speaking of history, president Andrew Jackson was a slaveholder and signed legislation removing Native Americans from their land. Nevertheless, Trump has long admired Jackson, visiting his home in Nashville. TRUMP: I'm a fan. I'm a big fan.

COATES (voice-over): And moving his portrait to the Oval Office, where he even hosted a group of Navajo veterans right in front of that painting.

TRUMP: You were here long before any of us were here.

COATES (voice-over): Second, no one sought to remove Andrew Jackson from the bill entirely. A redesigned bill simply moves him to the back of the bill and features Harriet Tubman on the front.

This decision came during the Obama administration, a decision that was also voted on by Americans, initiating a timeline to unveil the bill's redesign in 2020, coinciding with the 100th anniversary of women winning the right to vote.

Four years later, the plans for release have been pushed back a decade. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin telling reporters earlier this month, this is something that is in the distant future. But the new bill wouldn't be released until 2030.

So what accounts for the delay?

Mnuchin claims it's security concerns.

STEVEN MNUCHIN, U.S. TREASURY SECRETARY: This is a nonpolitical situation, where the primary objective of changing the currency is to stop counterfeiting.

COATES (voice-over): But, when pressed, Mnuchin couldn't explain why the imagery would still be delayed.

REP. AYANNA PRESSLEY (D-MA), MAJORITY MEMBER, HOUSE COMMITTEE ON OVERSIGHT AND REFORM: So yes or no, will you meet what was originally the 2020 redesign deadline?


MNUCHIN: We will meet the security feature redesign in 2020. The imagery feature will not be an issue that comes up until, most likely, 2026.

COATES (voice-over): Protesters have accelerated the discussion, making clear which images they believe fully represent America's heritage and which do not.

In Richmond, Virginia, the former capital of the Confederacy, Robert E. Lee's statue was covered with the projected image of Harriet Tubman.

COATES: But here, at Lafayette Park across from the White House, Andrew Jackson's remains protected. Protesters tried to topple it but then these fences went up. The president now saying they are going to increase protection of these statues, saying, we shouldn't erase our heritage. But whose heritage?

And why shouldn't Harriet Tubman be included in it?

ELIZABETH COBBS, AUTHOR: She is our most outstanding female patriot.

COATES (voice-over): And symbolically, what does it say when there is reluctance for now to even allow her to share the bill?

COBBS: It is so sad, this idea that by even sharing a little bit of that historical real estate, that somehow the insecure folks will feel that their story is lost.

COATES (voice-over): At a time when the nation is searching for its moral compass, the image of one woman, guided by the North Star, would speak volumes and in a language all Americans understand. After all, money talks.


ALLEN: Thank you for watching CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Natalie Allen. I'll see you this time tomorrow. Meantime, I'd like to you follow me on Instagram or Twitter. "NEW DAY" is just ahead.