Return to Transcripts main page

CNN NEWSROOM

Daughter Uses Dad's Obituary to Call Out Leaders For His Deaths; Experts Warn Against Summer Travel As Infections Surge. Aired 2:30-3p ET

Aired July 10, 2020 - 14:30   ET

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


(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[14:30:00]

BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN HOST: In what may be classified as one of his more bizarre talking points, President Trump claims he took a cognitive test recently and the results surprised his doctors.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I actually took one when I -- very recently when I -- when I was -- you know, the radical left way saying, is he all there, is he all there? And I proved I was all there because I aced it, I aced the test. And he should take the same exact test. A very standard test, I took it at Walter Reed Medical Center in front of doctors and they were very surprised. They said, that's an unbelievable thing. Rarely does anybody do what you just did.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KEILAR: Now, the White House never really gave a full explanation as to why the president made an unplanned visit to Walter Reed back in November. We still don't know about that.

I do want to bring in now, Art Caplan. He leads the Division of Medical Ethics at NYU School of Medicine. Art, always good to see you.

So you hear the president saying that. I have many questions. I guess the first one is, though, why was he taking a cognitive test?

ART CAPLAN, CNN MEDICAL ANALYST: Well, Brianna, the standard, if you want to do anything like a comprehensive physical at his age to do a cognitive test, they're looking to see if there might have been any type of a stroke or some kind of early on-set Alzheimer's, so that's pretty routine as part of, you know, a physical.

KEILAR: Okay, so when he says that his doctors were surprised and they said, rarely does anyone do that, what is -- what does that mean? You know this test, so tell us how that fits into this?

CAPLAN: It's kind of interesting, Brianna, that the test he took was not a difficult cognitive test. It's kind of a basic screening test, I doubt, very much. I wasn't there but I doubt very much that astonishment was the reaction of the doctors.

Look, there's been a problem for a long time that older presidential candidates, they do need cognitive testing but they need more than the 10, 12, 15, can you tell me what that is and do you know where you are kind of test, I don't think this is really where we need to be.

KEILAR: Okay. So, essentially, if his doctors were surprised, it wouldn't be really a good thing, right? If they were surprised that he aced what is really an easy test, as you put it.

CAPLAN: Right.

KEILAR: Okay, I want to turn quickly now to sports and ask you about a pressing question, which is this ethical dilemma of athletes getting rapid tests, right, which is essential if you are going to be monitoring them as they play sports, that would be part of the process. But what is the dilemma here with athletes getting rapid test and then you have the rest of America having to wait days and even weeks to get results for their tests?

[14:35:05]

CAPLAN: Well, it is a big issue of justice, Brianna. I understand that the athletes want to be safe and they are trying to create situations particularly in the bubble in Orlando where they could be isolated, but testing is something that we all need.

I am talking every day to healthcare workers, people who have a high- risk exposure, who get a test, and they're waiting seven days, eight days, ten days to get a test result back. And as you know, that means it's already void because it's too long of period of time that they already got infected in ten days.

So, yes, we need more testing and it's one of the great disasters of this administration that we're still trying to catch up and do more testing. The president keeps saying to do less, and that's crazy. We need to do more. And I think we have to figure out when we use (ph) those supply we've got on first responders, people with high risk exposure trying to get health care, or in sports. And you can tell, I kind of lean towards let's do hospital workers first.

KEILAR: Yes, I can tell you lean that way. I think a lot of doctors and scientist would agree with you on that, Art. Thank you.

CAPLAN: My pleasure.

KEILAR: Dr. Fauci issuing a blunt new warning that the U.S. is in the middle of a very serious problem right now.

Plus, the daughter of a man who died from the coronavirus used his obituary in part to call out the governor and other Arizona leaders for their pandemic response or lack thereof. She joins me live to share his memory and to explain what she is planning to do next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[14:40:00]

KEILAR: As of right now, more than 133,000 Americans have been killed by the coronavirus and we keep those numbers up on the right side of your screen because it's so important to remember they aren't just numbers, right? These are the number of human lives lost. They represent people, people with family and friends who love them and they're now left mourning because of this pandemic.

My next guest lost her father to the virus, Kristin Urquiza is with us. Kristin, thank you so much. I'm so sorry that you we're here. I'm so sorry about your father. Thank you for coming on.

And the reason we really wanted you to come on was because you honored your dad with a passionate tribute. And as part of this you call out politicians for how they handled the coronavirus and I was hoping that you could share that and read for our viewers what you wrote.

KRISTIN URQUIZA, LOST HER FATHER TO COVID-19: Absolutely. Thank you for inviting me here.

Mark Anthony Urquiza passed away on June 30th after more than three weeks battling COVID-19. Mark was a High School 400-meter dash state champion and cross-country runner. Mark was known for his infectious energy, strong will and, yes, stubbornness. He met his wife Brenda at Tolleson Union High School. They welcomed their child Kristin Danielle in 1981. The family loved their annual summer vacation to California where Kristin now lives.

Mark, who is often called blackjack by his friends and family was a lover of nature, the night sky, politics and was the life of the party. Along with Brenda and Kristin Danielle, he is loved and missed by siblings Frank C. Urquiza, Benny C. Urquiza, Richard C. Urquiza, Diana U. Camacho, Gina Urquiza-Waters, siblings-in-law, Carol Urquiza, Chris Waters, Yvonne Urquiza and Ray Camacho, his nieces and nephews, the broader community of Tolleson, Arizona, and countless friends. He is preceded in death by his parents, Venancio and Ruth Urquiza, and his brother, George.

Mark, like so many others should not have died from COVID-19. His death is due to the carelessness of the politicians who continue to jeopardize the health of brown bodies through a clear lack of leadership, refusal to acknowledge the severity of this crisis, and inability and unwillingness to give clear and decisive direction on how to minimize risk.

Mark's daughter Kristin Danielle and daughter-in-law Christine are channeling our sadness and rage into building an awareness campaign so fewer families are forced to endure this. We honor Mark's life by continuing this fight for others, even in these darkest moments.

Kristin Danielle will be starting an ofrenda, an altar with pictures of those lost to COVID-19, outside the Arizona State Capitol building on Wednesday evening at 4:30. All are welcome to bring pictures of their loved ones who are suffering from COVID or who have passed. For more information follow @MarkByCovid on Facebook.

KEILAR: MarkByCovid, which is taken off on your father's name Kristin.

And just tell us, I know this has garnered a lot of attentions. And, you know, I wrote in obituary for my mother a few years ago. And the thing about the obituary is its permanent, right, especially these days and it's really-- it's one of the most important ways that you can honor your loved one, and you decided that you were going to honor him and really going to your activist roots to carry this message. Tell us why you decided to do that.

URQUIZA: My father, I believe, was robbed of life. And I have endured a living nightmare over the course of the last three weeks that he was sick and passed. And I knew that if I did not speak up, who would? And the best thing that I could do to continue to fight for my father was to fight for other families out there.

[14:45:05]

And to make it known that these deaths are preventable as long as we are focused on a coordinated response that minimizes risk and puts people first.

KEILAR: And so what do you want from -- what do you want from officials as you're driving home this message that, look, black and brown Americans, in your case you're talking about brown bodies as you see in this obituary are disproportionately bearing the brunt of this virus, what do you want from them?

URQUIZA: Yes, my father was a Mexican American. For the majority of the stay-at-home ordinance, he was working until he was furloughed. The thing that I think is important is that that should be enough to make us act nationally, but it's not enough. And so, this virus is about to impact all of us. And pretty soon, we're all going to be knowing somebody who is suffering from this if we don't already.

So I think it's imperative that the Trump administration realize that he can't build a wall around coronavirus, it is time for leadership, it is time for mandating mask wearing and it's time to pause on our opening strategy and listen to epidemiologist, Dr. Fauci and others who have a sensible way in which we can prioritize people in this who are caught in the middle of the pandemic.

KEILAR: And tell us about this ofrenda that you are putting together. This is essentially like a -- this is a tradition, right, and it's essentially -- actually, I have one in my house. I find it to be very healing and I think it might be something very nice for you to share with people as you're talking about honoring people who have died. Tell us about it.

URQUIZA: Absolutely. I was inspired both in my culture but then also the AIDS memorial quilt, which brought about ton of awareness at helping to personify the lives lost during the AIDS crisis. And so by building this ofrenda, which is a basic altar where you have candles and pictures of loved ones passed, is a way to help make sure that people in charge know that these are real human beings whose lives are being impacted and are being lost due to poor leadership and terrible policy. And so I would be encouraged to and call out to others who are suffering to do a similar action.

KEILAR: Yes. Look, we have the number up, Kristin, on our screen, but it's so much more than a number, and we want to thank you for coming on to talk about that and reminding us that.

URQUIZA: I really appreciate you taking the time to ask me a little about my wonderful dad.

KEILAR: Yes, he sounds lovely, and we're really grateful to share his memory with you. So thank you so much and we're thinking of you and your family during this really tough time. Thanks again, Kristin Urquiza.

URQUIZA: I appreciate it.

KEILAR: Despite the surge in infections, there is no doubt that more Americans are traveling. We're going to break down the dangers that could be lurking on that summer road trip.

Plus, we're learning Dr. Fauci and the president are not speaking while the pandemic gets worse.

And an alarming revelation from Dr. Fauci that nearly 50 percent of people who are infected are asymptomatic.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[14:50:00]

KEILAR: New data shows summer road trips could be driving much of the surge of new coronavirus cases in the U.S. After months of staying home, a growing number of Americans are now deciding to hit the road. And it is a trend that has experts sounding the alarm.

So for more on all of this, let's bring in Pete Muntean. Pete, what are you learning about the dangers of summer travel?

PETE MUNTEAN, CNN AVIATION CORRESPONDENT: Well, Brianna, these new findings have led to new fears that road trips could be super spreaders of the virus. This new data is so interesting. It says that people are traveling at levels not seen since before the pandemic.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DR. DAVID DAMSKER, DIRECTOR, BUCKS COUNTRY HEALTH DEPARTMENT: People are feeling a little bit bottled up, right now.

MUNTEAN: Dr. David Damsker, thought his county was out of the woods. He leads public health for Bucks County, Pennsylvania outside Philadelphia. In a recent four-day period it, recorded 100 new coronavirus cases. Damsker has many of those were people who traveled to Myrtle Beach in South Carolina, now considered a hotspot.

DAMSKER: We're seeing about a half of our new cases are people that are infected while traveling. MUNTEAN: It is a story backed up by new findings from the University of Maryland. Aref Darzi and a team of researchers are using smart phone data to see where people are going. Over the July 4th, holiday the rate at which people traveled hit a new pandemic high nationwide.

AREF DARZI, RESEARCH ASSOCIATE, MARYLAND TRANSPORTATION INSTITUTE: We expect to see more travel during the holidays. But getting back to where we were before the pandemic, it was a big surprise for us.

MUNTEAN: So people feel safe to make a road trip.

DARZI: exactly.

MUNTEAN: The traveling trend could spread new cases from new exposure, says the University's, Louisa Fanzini.

DR. LOUISA FRANZINI, UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND: I am concerned because soon when people travel they bring the virus with them.

MUNTEAN: She is urging states to consider more travel advisories.

[14:55:01]

New Jersey just expanded its list telling travelers from more states to quarantine for 14 days.

FRANZINI: In some states, they would need to be moved (ph) because the virus is out of control.

MUNTEAN: AAA forecasted that road trips would drop only 3 percent this summer but the Bureau of Transportation Statistics find July 4th trips, longer than 50 miles increased compared to last year. Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, stresses now is the time for vigilance, not vacations.

GOV. LARRY HOGAN (R-MD): This virus kind of has a mind of its own and it doesn't recognize borders. So people travel from one state to another, we're very much watching it.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

MUNTEAN: Researchers are watching this, too. They say that travel ticked up for the first time back in May. A period they now refer to as quarantine fatigue. They fear a repeat of that again across the country as coronavirus cases surge. Brianna?

KEILAR: And how, Pete, were they able to pull this data?

MUNTEAN: Well, Brianna, they essentially used the data from your smart phone, that is used to build things like traffic maps on Google Maps and the like. They're able to see how people move and how far they're going. What's so interesting in this is they're able to see the distance that people travel, the miles per person is the highest it's ever been. And when you put it up next to a bit the number of cases, it becomes alarming.

KEILAR: Wow, that is very smart, very interesting. Pete Muntean, thanks for bringing that to us.

Europe is reopening to travelers in search of a summer vacation but that does the not include Americans. And as the coronavirus outbreak continues to surge, Dr. Anthony Fauci says, the E.U.'s decision is understandable.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: Right now, they have their infection rate very low, much lower than we do. So they're looking at us and they're saying the same thing that we said to them.

I wish that that were not the case. I wouldn't be recommending that. I think we need to get back to some sort of normality.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KEILAR: For more on the coronavirus pandemic, let's check in now with my colleagues around the world.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BILL WEIR, CNN CHIEF CLIMATE CORRESPONDENT: I'm Bill Weir in the Capital of Brazil, where confirmed COVID-19 cases have surpassed 1.7 million, though that number is likely off by as much of a factor of ten with 8,000 or so people in critical condition. It is sadly likely that the number of mortalities will pass 70,000 today.

Also President Jair Bolsonaro remains in semi-isolation, not here in his office but at the presidential palace down the road where he used social media to continue promote his prescription of the anti-malarial hydroxychloroquine, even though it's been proven by the World Health Organization, National Institutes of Health, Food and Drug Administration, that it does not work on this disease. But he's so convinced, he ask his military distributing a stockpile out on the countryside.

And at the same time federal police are investigating pandemic-related corruption charges in 11 of Brazil's 26 states, three governors, seven health ministers all under investigation for everything, from profiteering to buying ventilators that simply do not work.

RAFAEL ROMO, CNN SENIOR LATIN AFFAIRS EDITOR: I'm Rafael Romo, covering the global coronavirus pandemic. World Health Authorities are keeping an eye on Mexico, a country that on Thursday saw its third record day of new coronavirus cases in the past week. The Mexican Health Ministry recorded nearly 7,300 COVID-19 cases Thursday, bringing the country's total confirmed cases to well over 282,000.

And listen to this. From June 2nd to July 2nd, Mexico City's case total jumped about 65 percent. And it was also on July 2nd that the Mexican capital's open air markets reopened, places that some fear may become hot spots for the spread of the virus. Mexico together with other Latin American countries is at or close to its peak infection rate according to a CNN analysis. KAORI ENJOJI, JOURNALIST: I'm Kaori Enjoji, in Chiba Japan. Baseball fans are back in the stadium for the first time in four months but it is a whole new ball game for social distancing, only 5,000 are allowed in. Masks are required. They're temperature checks. No jumping up and down in excitement. People are nervous because the number of new coronavirus cases in Tokyo hit a record yesterday. But Japan says, it can and will reopen if people stick to the rules.

KEILAR: Thank you so much to all of my colleagues for that.

And before we go, a quick reminder that an all new season of United Shades of America premieres this month. W. Kamau Bell is taking on in justice and inequality from the farms of Oklahoma to the beaches of Miami. This will start on Sunday July 19th at 10:00 P.M. Eastern and Pacific.

[15:00:01]

Our special coverage continues now with Brooke Baldwin.