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Pence's Arizona Trip Delayed After Secret Service Agents Tested Positive; Canada Crushing The Curve As U.S. Cases Soar; D.L. Hughley Opens Up About His Coronavirus Battle. Aired 8:30-9a ET

Aired July 3, 2020 - 08:30   ET


ERICA HILL, CNN NEW DAY: Saying that he's deploying hundreds of personnel, he's going to assist the state.


Do you have any more -- have you seen any more specifics about what that help is going to look out for Arizona?

WILL HUMBLE, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, ARIZONA PUBLIC HEALTH ASSOCIATION: So what I do know is what I read in the local paper here in Arizona, which suggested that the vice president committed to up to 500 medical personnel. Some of those are intensive care nurses, respiratory therapists, which we are in short supply, physicians as well. So we can certainly use the help. We're really going into surge-mode here.

HILL: Going into surge mode. Hospitalizations are a major concern for you right now. Where do things stand?

HUMBLE: Oh, absolutely. I mean, this is a big deal. I hope those of you out there watching, don't let your elected officials get you into the same position.

So we're in a position where we're in -- it's called crisis standards of care and it's a essentially -- a state activated that level of care. And what it means is that patients will, as resources become shorter and shorter relative to demand, people will be triaged in a different way to determine what kind of care they get. So if you would normally have been in the ICU bed, intensive care bed, you might not get that bed at this point. It just depends on the resources at the time.

They're doing their best right now to move patients from hospital to hospital to level out the level of care. But essentially that's where we are, at crisis levels.

HILL: You're at crisis levels. And we should point out too, this is not just for COVID patients. This impacts patients across the board.

HUMBLE: Yes, great point. And that's a really important point is that this -- you know, when you're in crisis levels of care, it's not just COVID patients. And so, let's say, for example, you came in with chest pain, you would be triaged like all the other patients. No matter what it is, the patients are evaluated based on, number one, the level of criticality, how likely they are to survive and then also if they do recover, how many years would they have left. So it's a pretty grim assessment but it's the reality of where we are.

HILL: Grim is, I think, maybe putting it mildly and the thought of having to make those decisions, I think, also a really sobering thought for people.

Testing is also a major concern that you have. We have seen these pictures of long, long lines. Is it getting any better?

HUMBLE: Well, the testing capacity has been improving, actually. So the level of the amount -- the gross number of tests has been improving significantly. What has changed is that we have a lot more community spread. And so, you know, supply and demand is what drives whether there's a shortage or not. And while the supply of tests has improved, the demand has improved a lot.

And I want to point out something else, which is that it's not just the number of tests that matters, it's the turnaround time. Because if you've got a turnaround time, like we have in Arizona, a lot of these tests are coming in six to eight days after the sample was taken, the contact tracing that you do is ineffective, because you've got to get the results back fast so the contact tracers can get you into isolation and identify contacts before you infect other people.

HILL: Will Humble, great to speak with you, as well. I appreciate it. Thank you.

HUMBLE: Take care. Thanks.

HILL: Here is what else to watch today.


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HILL: Unlike the United States, Canada's hospitals have remained largely empty during this global pandemic. How America's neighbor to the north crushed the curve, next.



JOHN BERMAN, CNN NEW DAY: In just a few hours, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau gives his daily coronavirus briefing. Compared to United States, Canada has just been crushing the curve.

CNN's Paula Newton joins us with a look at what's behind this difference. Paula?

PAULA NEWTON, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT: Yes. And, John, look, we don't want to make this seem as if the Canadian response was perfect, it wasn't. And to suggest so would be a disservice to thousands of Canadians that did lose their lives.

But, John, I have to tell, in five months of tracking this virus in Canada, speaking to dozens of doctors, public health experts from all over the country, the key difference was that they realized early on that they had to have a healthy respect for the virus and what it would take to really contain the spread. Take a listen.


NEWTON: For Canada, it's been a hallmark of the pandemic, empty hospitals. The feared wave of COVID patients never happened.

Canada started out much like the United States, but as the COVID curve climbed, Canada crushed it, now seeing on average just a few hundred new positive cases a day. That means right now, the U.S. is reporting more than ten times more positive cases per capita than Canada. And yet, no one here is declaring mission accomplished.

JUSTIN TRUDEAU, CANADIAN PRIME MINISTER: What the situation we're seeing in the United States and elsewhere highlights for us is that even as our economy is reopening, we need to make sure we're continuing to remain vigilant, individually and collectively.

NEWTON: Vigilance has been the watch word. Early and widespread testing, a free healthcare system still building surge capacity, longer shutdowns, slower reopenings, social distancing and there is no controversy over wearing masks. Most see it as their duty.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I wear it for myself and others. It protects them from me and me from them. It's just respectable to be respectable to other people.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right from the top down, they're leading by example in terms of their use of masks.

NEWTON: British Columbia's top doctor acted as the country's early warning system, successfully managing the very first outbreaks and proving it could be done.


DR. BONNIE HENRY, PROVINCIAL HEALTH OFFICER FOR BRITISH COLUMBIA: A lot of it comes down to cohesiveness, being able to provide the information that people needed to do what we needed them to do. And that has held up as we have gone into opening up things again.

People still are adhering to the basics to try and ensure that we still keep each other safe.

NEWTON: Dr. Henry points to something else that was critical, keeping politics out of the response. Here is a conservative leader praising the liberal deputy prime minister.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Chrystia Freeland, what can I say? She is an absolute champion.

NEWTON: It would be like a Democratic governor calling Vice President Mike Pence their hero.

HENRY: In general, we were all coming together. We have the same basic information for people and the politicians made the right decisions based on advice and that helped us.

NEWTON: Also critically important, the U.S./Canada border remains closed to all but essential travel and anyone entering Canada right now must quarantine for 14 days. And the E.U. has deemed Canadians as safe for entry, unlike Americans.

And yet, here too, missteps have had tragic consequences. More than 8,500 people have died. The vast majority of the deaths linked to crowded and poorly staffed seniors homes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Seeing a lot of bad stuff happen, but I don't remember anything with this level of sadness.

NEWTON: Prime Minister Trudeau admits it has been a national shame. And in that contrition, Canadians see a willingness to recalibrate the country's response to the virus based on an unwavering deference to science.


NEWTON: You know, and that deference to science continues even on Canada Day. It was on Wednesday. You know, Erica, events were canceled long ago. There were only virtual events, they knew they couldn't get together like any other normal Canada Day and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau went to the food bank on Canada Day. That was it. Such a contrast to what's happening today, Mt. Rushmore, Donald Trump, thousands of people, no social distancing, no masks. Again, a key difference in terms of how the pandemic was handled from the very top.

And I have to tell you, Erica, you know, there are thousands of Americans watching us right now who know that just a few miles to the north, things are quite different.

HILL: I was thinking the same thing as I was watching your excellent piece. Thank you.

Well, as America celebrates its independence this weekend, CNN Hero Harry Grammer is reflecting on the country's founding principles and what they mean for people of color today. Grammer works to empower incarcerated youth and reduce recidivism in Los Angeles.


HARRY GRAMMER, CNN HERO: On July 4th, 1776, 13 colonies claimed their independence from England. My ancestors never lived in England. In a 4th of July key known addressed (ph) Frederick Douglas wrote, the rich inheritance of justice, liberty, prosperity and independence bequeathed by your fathers is shared by you, not by me. The sunlight that has brought light and healing to you has brought stripes and death to me. This 4th of July is yours, not mine. I must mourn, you may rejoice.

Back then, black Americans were seen as unfit for the fruits of freedom. Nearly 250 years later, the scales are still tipped to one side making it hard for us to subscribe to something that Dr. King would still call a dream. It's not until we balance the criminal justice system, root out systemic racism and provide equal freedom to all that we become a truly free country, and maybe then we'll have a day we can all celebrate.


HILL: You can hear more reflections from CNN Heroes at You can visit CNN Heroes on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

Just ahead, comedian D.L. Hughley opening up about a scary moment when he passed out on stage. We'll hear from him, next.



BERMAN: Comedian D.L. Hughley made headlines last month after he collapsed on stage during a performance in Nashville. Watch.

Hughley revealed days later that he had tested positive for coronavirus.

Joining me now, I guess from quarantine, D.L. Hughley. His new book, Surrender White People, Our Unconditional Terms for Peace is out now. D.L. great to have you with us. How are you feeling?

D.L. HUGHLEY, COMEDIAN/ACTIVIST/AUTHOR: Thank you. I feel wonderful, man. Yes, apparently, that was Derrick Robles (ph), my great security guard who caught me, but he's a great security, but apparently a horrible shortstop. But I'm feeling pretty good.

Today is my last day of quarantine, so I'm feeling pretty good. Very good, actually.

BERMAN: Walk us through what happened there on stage.

HUGHLEY: I had been -- it's my second week of shows. I think I had done a bunch in Dallas. Then I had gotten home and I had done my radio show and then preparation for my T.V show. And then I had done my T.V show, then I flew to Nashville that Thursday and then I was on my second one on Friday. And I had just passed out.

But I was actually dehydrated and exhausted and they ran a battery of tests. They ran a test to see if I had a stroke. They ran a test to see if I had a blood clot, you know, just all kinds of things. and one of the tests that they ran was a COVID test and it came back positive a couple of hours later.

So I didn't pass out as a symptom of -- because I didn't have any symptoms associated with COVID.


But any virus and you're already dehydrated kind of make things, complicates things a little bit more. So that was it.

BERMAN: Scary to see. I'm glad you're doing well. You're asymptomatic. And never really, other than passing out on stage, which I guess actually does count as a symptom, but besides that, asymptomatic. But there's an important lesson here because you've since found out you spread the virus, right?

HUGHLEY: Yes. So when I got in, you know, I had come in from Dallas. I had gone to work and everybody at my office, the radio show, they all tested positive also. So it was -- I most certainly learned that just because you're not necessarily having any symptoms does -- and, you know, we took our temperatures and blood, you know, and your oxygen levels and all that kind of stuff and that just -- that wasn't quite enough.

So I just think that everybody should be tested and I think everybody should wear masks.

BERMAN: So let's talk about your book, Surrender White People. It's terrific. And what's really interesting to me about it is you wrote this -- it's like a year ago that you basically wrote this and you were all wrapped up before the last five weeks in America, before George Floyd was killed, before there was this sort of great awakening.

And in some ways, a lot of the things you have called for have happened. What's it like to see it?

HUGHLEY: Right. I started -- the book, Surrender White People, is about people surrendering their privilege, their white privilege and admitting it exists. Because -- and there are a lot of people who say, well, I didn't do anything. It's not too much different than being asymptomatic during a pandemic. Just because you're not actively doing anything or maybe not even aware that you're doing something doesn't mean that harm is not being done in your wake.

And I think that one of the things that I have seen that I have been heartened by and the book -- you know, tongue in cheek was calling for was people to surrender their white privilege and a lot of people are doing exactly that. And I think we're having a conversation to the extent that I had never seen it before. And it's very heartening to see. BERMAN: One of the most interesting chapters to me because I'm a history buff was history shall be changed, you write.


BERMAN: And, note, among other things, a lot of people only learned about the Greenwood massacre in Tulsa, Oklahoma, by watching the Watchmen on HBO. And God bless HBO, and Watchmen was one of the best shows I've seen in years, but that's not where you should be getting your American history for something so important.

HUGHLEY: No, the history is always written by the winners. I mean, just like what we're going through right now is like we have a president right now who says that Black Lives Matter is a symbol of terror, meanwhile, a week before he signed an executive order to protect actual symbols of terror. Who is responsible for more deaths, Black Lives Matter or Andrew Jackson?

And our history is so rife with men whose only predicate for getting a statue was brutalizing black people. I think the last time we erected a statue to a man that didn't brutalize black people is Rocky, and beat the hell out of (INAUDIBLE). So I think our history is told from a prism that I think -- like even right now, 4th of July is tomorrow and I think a lot of people are going to be giving the holiday a side act because we know it's B.S. We know that all of us weren't free on that day.

BERMAN: You talked about how things are beginning to happen that you may have never expected before. One of them is NASCAR, right? NASCAR has banned the confederate flag. There was that show of solidarity around Bubba Wallace, the one black driver on the track there.


BERMAN: A year ago, if I had told you that NASCAR was going to ban the confederate flag and rally around the one black driver, what would you have said?

HUGHLEY: I would have thought that it was -- much like what I thought would happen like a year ago, Drew Brees said what he said about Colin Kaepernick, it wouldn't be a fuss at all. But because the metrics of the country have changed, it caused consequences (ph).

The Bubba Wallace thing, NASCAR, I mean, of course, it's hard to win a race in NASCAR with Black Lives Matter on the back because the police will always pull you over. But the whole noose thing was funny to me because, you know, he found the noose and then the FBI investigated and found that the noose had been there.

So although this is not a new noose, but an old one, so things have changed. But I think that we have to reconcile what we are, where we're going and there is that continuing of experience in between that we're going to have to navigate.

BERMAN: D.L. Hughley, we're glad you're feeling better. Congratulations on getting out of quarantine soon. Stay well, and congratulations on the new book, Surrender White People.


We appreciate you being with us.

HUGHLEY: Thank you, John. Thank you.

HILL: Great interview.

Well, this is a 4th of July like no other with the battle against the pandemic and continued fight for racial injustice. With events canceled across the country tomorrow, CNN is bringing the celebration to you, the fireworks and All-Star musical lineup of Jewel, Barry Manilow, CeCe Winans, Don McLean and many more.

And perhaps most importantly for us, Don Lemon and Dana Bash hosting CNN's 4th of July in America. You can watch it live starting at 8:00 P.M. Eastern right here on CNN.

BERMAN: Erica Hill, thanks for being here all week. In the spirit of Barry Manilow, you came and you gave without taking, and I can't thank you enough.

HILL: I can't thank you enough for referencing Barry Manilow.

BERMAN: I can't smile without you.

HILL: You are a true gem, Berman.

BERMAN: You write the songs. I appreciate it.

All right, CNN's coverage continues, next.