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Health Experts Criticize President Trump's Comments that Increase in COVID-19 Cases Due to Increased Testing; President Trump Claims to Have Recently Taken and Passed Cognitive Test; Tropical Storm Threatens Parts of Delaware and New Jersey; Fauci: Florida Reopened Too Fast, Allowing Virus to Roar Back; New Audio Paints Conflicting Account of Breonna Taylor Killing. Aired 8-8:30a ET

Aired July 10, 2020 - 08:00   ET



JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: It's about testing. So what you're about to hear, it's either a lie, as one leading doctor just told us, a coordinated misinformation campaign, or what you're about to hear is proof that the president doesn't understand the simple math of the pandemic.


DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Let me just make one statement. We do testing like nobody's ever done testing. And when we test, the more you test, the more cases you find. Other countries you know when they test, and I ask them all, they test when somebody's not feeling well or when somebody walks into the hospital. So they don't have tests. They have tests that are very limited. We have these massive 40, 45 million who have been tested. It's a record, and our tests are the best.

So we have cases all over the place. Most of those cases immediately get better. People, they're young people, they have sniffles, and two days later they're fine, and they're not sick. They're asymptomatic. A lot of things happen. And what we're doing is with all of these tests that we're doing all over the country, test, everybody tests, pull up parking lots, everything else, what we've done is we've created a tremendous number of cases.


BERMAN: It's absurd. It's simply absurd. People are not testing themselves to death in California. They're not testing themselves into the hospital in Texas. It's just not happening. And the American people seem to know it. A new poll shows that voters two to one disapprove of the president's handling of the pandemic. Incidentally, the president said overnight that doctors are surprised how well he did on a cognitive test. Why were they so surprised? What were they expecting? More on that in a second.

Joining us now, CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta. Sanjay, what struck me overnight is we saw at least three states with record numbers of deaths, Texas, California, Tennessee. One of the things we have been worried about as the case number has shot up is what will happen to the mortality rate and the death toll, what had happened. It now seems to be happening.

SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. This is -- this is sort of the news that nobody wants, but was very expected. We have been told, and we have been able to look what happens with the virus now for several months. And we shouldn't be surprised, then, when it behaves exactly like it's always behaved. It's a contagious virus. People first get exposed. If they're going to get sick it usually takes two or three weeks for them to actually seek out hospitalization. And then if people tragically die as we're now seeing, it's a few weeks after this. So once again, the virus has behaved exactly as you'd expect it to behave.

I think people get lulled each time into these false senses of complacency. Well, look, it's the numbers have gone up but the hospitalizations have not gone up. But then the hospitalizations go up. Then people say, well, yes, the hospitalizations have gone up, but people aren't dying from this. And then the death rates start to go up. I don't know how many times it is going to take for us to actually see this over and over again to be convinced that this is how the virus behaves. The virus is the one constant in this entire equation, and we're seeing that play out once again, sadly.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Sanjay, either the president doesn't understand the process, he doesn't understand the math, he doesn't understand that the deaths and the hospitalizations have nothing to do with the testing, either he doesn't understand that, or he is actively misleading the American public. And that's what Dr. Peter Hotez told us this morning. He said that he is seeing, and he has a whole laundry list of where he's seeing it, examples, an active misinformation campaign.

GUPTA: Yes. At this point, you have to believe it's just absolutely misinformation and it's deliberate. And the reason is that we know -- I interviewed Dr. Robert Redfield last night, we talked to Dr. Fauci, we talked to others, every public health official in the country has said the same thing. They're speaking with a unified voice here. You're not going to find a public health person who is saying, yes, the only reason the numbers are going up is because we're testing more. And we know they're tell the White House the same information.

So at this point, you have to believe that the president is hearing what all these public health officials are telling them. I know he's not meeting with the task force directly. I know those briefings have gone away, all of that. But still, this basic information -- we never got ahead on testing. We flubbed it from the start. We have been behind the curve the entire time. And even last night as I'm talking to Dr. Redfield, he said to me, what we really need is a testing program in this country. You have got to be kidding me. Middle of July, we need a testing program in this country? It's what other countries did out of the gate. And we still middle of July don't have one.

BERMAN: Sanjay, talk to me about what we are seeing in terms of mobility. I know there are some new numbers you have been looking at overnight that you can tell us about now in terms of how people have been coming in to contact with each other.


GUPTA: Yes. We can show some of the graphs here. It's sort of interesting to look at how you predict how mobile people are going to be, and when you look at this mobility data you start to get a sense of where are people going, how does it compare to, for example in this case, previous big weekends, July 4th versus Memorial Day weekend. And what's that likely to mean, again, as we were just talking about, a few weeks from now.

So people, like you see Charleston, for example, a big destination for people, 20 percent increased out of state visitors there. A little bit higher over July 4th weekend, over Memorial Day weekend. Orlando, same thing, Disney World hasn't opened yet, but they're still seeing the significant increase in visitors.

Here's why it's important. First of all, you can see an idea of people's attitudes. People are traveling more this holiday weekend versus Memorial Day weekend. Also, if you get that significant mobility and go back and correlate this with the University of Washington model, the IHME model which everyone cites at the White House, one of the things they really rely on is mobility data to make the predictions. You hear the predictions of how many people are likely to get infected by such and such date. They're looking at anonymous cell phone data, mobility data, to make those projections. And this company, Cubix (ph), has sort of been doing the same thing. So we wanted to get an idea ourselves of just how much mobility is happening, and it's increasing, which is a concern again, but it's predictable. As we just talked about, you will see more exposures. You will see more hospitalizations. You will see people taking the virus back to their own communities again, and that's a problem.

CAMEROTA: Sanjay, we also just want to get your take on something the president revealed last night. On "HANNITY" he revealed that he had very recently had a cognitive test. We know that he had one back in 2018, and his doctor, the White House doctor at that time said that he had gotten a perfect 30 out of 30, a perfect score. It was like name this animal, those kind of cognitive tests. You see a picture of an animal, you name it. But the president said last night he had gotten one very recently. We don't know details, we don't know if this was the visit to Walter Reed recently that was unscheduled. But here is how the president described it.


DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I actually took one when -- very recently when I was -- the radical left was 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. The very standard test. I took at 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.


CAMEROTA: He was trying to call into question Joe Biden's mental acuity, and he was saying he has this test. Is it, is it -- can the American public -- are we entitled to see these things? Should we expect to see results of tests like that?

GUPTA: First of all, we have no idea what he's talking about. We don't know what test he took. We don't know when he took it. Very recently means what exactly? The doctors that he was taking this in front of, were they neurologists? Were they assessing him for some specific thing? There's a lot -- he says stuff like this, and then trying to piece it together.

There is no obligation, Alisyn, to your point, for the White House, the president to release any of these sorts of tests. He does talk about it himself, and of course then we'll dig in and try to figure out what exactly is he talking about. We do know about the Montreal Cognitive Assessment. We can show you, as point out, Alisyn, correctly what the test involves. It's a very simple test. Here's an example. This is a visual spatial sort of test. One goes to A, A goes to two, and so forth. How would you connect those dots essentially is what they're asking. Can you draw a cube? Can you name certain animals? Things like that.

It's a basic test, and it's not -- it's not a diagnostic test of any sort. It is a screening test to try and determine whether or not someone should have more sophisticated tests. If someone was actually getting a test for dementia, it would not be that test. It would be a battery of tests and probably take place over time, not a single visit. Might involve blood work, might involve imaging tests, things like that. So it's just very hard to piece together what exactly he's talking about in.

BERMAN: And what were they seeing that so surprised him that he did well on drawing a cube or connecting dots there. Raises a lot of questions, Sanjay. Thanks for being with us this morning.

GUPTA: You got it.

BERMAN: All right, developing this morning, tropical storm Fay strengthening as it bears down on the Jersey Shore and New York. It's expected to dump a lot of rain today. How much, when, and where? Chad Myers with the forecast.

CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Already five to six inches, John, in parts of Delaware. The worst weather is from Rehoboth Beach on up to Wildwood right now, that's in New Jersey, and it will move into New York City later on today, I would suspect between 4:00 and 6:00 for you.


It is a 50 miles per hour storm. It got into the Gulf stream, the warm water off the east coast. And the storm that we talked about yesterday that wasn't anything at all, did turn into this storm. It will move on up into the Hudson River and eventually even into New England. But that will be later on tonight and tomorrow. And then it will be gone for all of the big cities here.

But tropical storm warnings all the way from Rehoboth all the way up to Southampton, all they way out, even onto Montauk, we will see tropical storm force winds in the next I would say 12 to 24 hours in some spots. We're going to see an awful lot of heavy rainfall as well. This is what the radar should look like today. We move you ahead to 5:00. That's when the biggest weather will be, Long Island, New York City, all the way toward Hoboken. And it will move away from you somewhere around 7:00, 8:00 tonight, and into Albany, Schenectady, Saratoga Springs, into Boston could see some pretty big showers. The wind will be about 30 miles per hour.

And then look at this, some of these areas here will be, again, four to six more inches of rainfall. We already have flash flood warnings going on along the coast of Delaware on up into New Jersey, even parts of Maryland. John?

BERMAN: Chad, it sounds like what you're telling me is the only thing I should do today is nap. I shouldn't try to be productive at all?

MYERS: I think that's what I do every day.


BERMAN: Thank you. Permission structure granted. Chad Myers, thank you very much for that. I appreciate it.

All right, let's talk about the state of Florida seeing these record rises in cases, the number of deaths increasing there, and the president on his way. We'll discuss, next.




DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, NIAID DIRECTOR: You know from experience historically that when you don't have unanimity in the approach to something, you're not as effective in how you handle it. So I think you'd have to make the assumption that if there wasn't such divisiveness, that we'd have a more coordinated approach.


JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Dr. Anthony Fauci blaming partisanship for the coronavirus relapse in the United States and he named names. He singled out Florida among other states that reopened too soon.

Joining us now, CNN political commentator Ana Navarro and CNN political commentator David Axelrod.

Ana, first to you, you're in Florida, you're in the middle of it all. You are aware the president is coming today, to hear Anthony Fauci, again, name names, single out Florida for its response -- what are you seeing? ANA NAVARRO, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Look, I think -- I think it's

a perfect storm of what happened here in Florida. We let our guard down.

I think we had a false sense of security created by elected officials who told us we had done a great job. We had gone into quarantine early. The heat killed the virus. The humidity killed the virus.

Well, let me tell you, buddy, the heat and the humidity is about to kill me and the virus is doing just fine. So, you know, I can't tell you how many articles I read about what a great job Florida had done, what a great job the governor had done, the mayors had done, and I think we believed it because we were desperate to get out, we were desperate to see each other, it kind of coincided with graduation season, it coincided with father's day, it coincided with certain holidays that led to the congregations we saw on the beaches.

People don't close the beaches early enough. Those should have remained closed. The places where the young people congregation should have remained closed. And then you see the polarization of COVID and that is plain stupid and it is costing people's lives.

For there not to be a mandate for masks is stupid. It's political. It's plain politics an putting that in front of Floridians' interests.

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: David, at this point, I mean, it just feels hopeless. I don't know how we are going to get out of this because any time we have one of our experts on which is several times a morning, they say oh, well, it's simple. We follow the lead of what that did successfully in other countries, and that is that you have widespread testing and you do contact-tracing and we don't know how to do that. The federal government washed their hands of it.

Last night, the CDC director, Dr. Redfield, told Sanjay we really need rapid testing. He's the head of the CDC. Whose responsibility is it at this point?

DAVID AXELROD, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Yeah. Look, without trying to politicize this ourselves, it is obvious that this is a national crisis. It's a global crisis but for America, it's a national crisis. It demands a national response.

The president found the facts inconvenient for the first six weeks and denied the existence of the virus. Then he declared war on the virus. Then he declared the war was over in the middle of the battle and now we see the results of that.

And the states, some -- many of the states that are suffering now are people who followed that lead and who rushed to open. Everyone wants to open the country. Everyone wants their kids in school, but what we have seen now and Ana's experiencing it in her own state is that if you do it too quickly, if you don't do it the right way, if you don't follow the protocol, if you don't wear the masks, you don't social distance, and so on, you're going to be in the soup again.

And so, the absence of national leadership here, and mobilization of our resources to meet the need is really hurting. What we're seeing in these states is what we feared at the beginning which is that public health systems are being overwhelmed because of our inability to do what we know works.

BERMAN: Yeah. The president is saying -- go ahead.

NAVARRO: And, Alisyn, you said something so important because you were talking about testing. Look, I have eight people around me right now who are either going through COVID, or who think they have COVID.

But I had two who had tests done a week ago and are still waiting for results. And they are just going under the assumption, based on the assumption that they have it.


CAMEROTA: That's madness. It's madness, Ana.

NAVARRO: It's unconscionable.

CAMEROTA: That's unconscionable. How can we be waiting seven to ten days?

NAVARRO: It's ridiculous in the United States of America it takes seven days to know if you have the highly contagious disease or not. How can that be happening in Florida?

I don't want anybody telling me anything else about the third world because if that's not the third world, I don't know what is.


And, look, Donald Trump is coming to Miami today. This is a great time, this is a great opportunity for him to be presidential for once and talk about social distancing and talk about wearing masks.

Because make no mistake, it is his supporters who are out there refusing to wear masks because they think it makes them look weak, because it's government overreach, because it's communism, because it's big brother telling you what do, because it's so hard to wear a mask.

I'll tell you what's hard. Wearing a nurse's uniform in an emergency room that's filled with COVID patients, that's hard. Wearing a fireman's uniform into a fire, that's hard. Wearing the nation's uniform which President Trump refused to do and was a draft dodger for like Tammy Duckworth did, that is hard.

Wearing a mask is not hard. Breathing through a mask is not hard. Wearing Spanx is harder than wearing a damn mask, so everybody should wear their damn masks because people are dying and getting sick.

It's not just old people, it's not just liberals, it's Republicans, it's Democrats, it's black, it's white, it's Latino, it's rich, it's poor. COVID does not discriminate and we are at an emergency here in

Florida. People got to knock off the politics and just face the science and the facts.

BERMAN: David, we understand that the president will visit Walter Reed tomorrow and at least the reporting right now, the president's claim is, is that he will wear a mask when he goes to Walter Reed. CNN's reporting is he's doing it, you know, kicking and screaming and had to be forced -- people had to plead with him to do it.

What will the impact of that be and what does it tell you?

AXELROD: What it tells me is that he was told he couldn't go unless he wore a mask.

Look, Ana as well -- I hope he acts like a president. I don't know if anybody's taking bets on this, but I'm on the other side of that one. I don't think that's going to happen and we know because we've had six or four or five months of experience right now and this is incredibly damaging because people actually do follow the lead of the president of the United States.

When the president of the United States says, oh, if you feel comfortable do it, if you don't feel comfortable don't do it. When he tells his aides in private, I don't want to do it because it makes me look silly, you know, that has an impact. And there is no doubt about it.

So perhaps people will take some message from him wearing it at Walter Reed. But my guess is he will send the opposite message in Florida today and he'll continue to do what he's doing which is be in this land of denial and people will -- too many people will follow his lead and one of the reasons we're in the jam we're in.

NAVARRO: But if he does it in Miami today, David, I'll tell you something, it's criminal.

If you take a look at the numbers, over -- out of every 100 Miamians from Miami-Dade are suffering with COVID. One out of 100 Floridians. More than 1 out of 100 if you look at the numbers are dealing with COVID.

So to come to Florida and not stress the importance of social distancing, washing your hands, doing the basic things that we should be doing is just -- I mean, it's not more than presidential, it's criminal.

AXELROD: Ana, your -- Ana, Ana, I agree, but your governor who is an acolyte of the president is still saying that this is a function of testing, that we're testing more people. That is clearly not the case.


AXELROD: So, you know, the party line, at least from the White House is to subdue the scientists, kind of withhold information and pretend that this is -- that what you see isn't -- and what you're experiencing isn't real. That is -- that is mind-boggling.

CAMEROTA: We have to leave it there, guys. Thank you very much for the discussion, Ana Navarro and David Axelrod. Nice to see you.

AXELROD: Good to see you.

CAMEROTA: There's new evidence in the Breonna Taylor investigation. What her boyfriend told police right after she was shot and killed inside her own home as well as what the police officers were saying. We have the mayor of Louisville, next.



CAMEROTA: Newly released audio is shedding light on the moments leading up to the police shooting and killing of Breonna Taylor. She was a Kentucky EMT worker, in her own apartment.

CNN's Brynn Gingras joins us now with more.

What are we learning?


This is the first time we're hearing anything about inner details of this investigation. Now, CNN obtained audio recordings from the lawyer of Breonna Taylor's boyfriend Kenneth Walker, the recordings are police interviews from the police sergeant who fired shots inside Taylor's home and was shot himself on that March 9th, and also from Walker.

Now, before we play that audio, it's important to note that Walker was interviewed hours after the incident happened. It's unknown if he had a lawyer. While police talked to Sergeant Jon Mattingly more than a week after he was released from the hospital and his lawyer was present.

So let's go back to March. Police again remember were serving a no- knock warrant to Taylor's home as part of the larger drug investigation. The two men's accounts of how that went down are very different.


KENNETH WALKER, BREONNA TAYLOR'S BOYFRIEND: But it's another knock at the door. She's yelling at the top of her lungs and I'm too at this point, who is it? No answer, no response.

So when we come out -- when we get out of the bed or whatever, like walking towards the door, the -- like the door like comes like off the hinges. So I just left off one shot, like still can't see who it is, or anything.

SGT. JON MATTINGLY: It probably lasted between 45 seconds and a minute, banging on the door, and at that time, I looked back at Lieutenant Hoover and he says, I guess go ahead and hit it, because at one point, probably about the third time we banged, Mike was standing in the doorway and he said I can hear somebody inside. So we thought they were coming to the door. Then we didn't hear anything else so we kept banging and announcing.


GINGRAS: Now, Mattingly was first in the apartment. He said he fired four shots after Walker fired that warning shot again with the gun. He was licensed to carry. He also said that he recalls hearing more gunfire after he rushed out of the home.