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Wildfires In California Prompt State Of Emergency; Overview Of The Upcoming U.S. Election; Pair Of Spacecraft Venture Deeper Into Space. Aired 4-4:10a ET

Aired September 8, 2020 - 04:00:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: Kicking off a four day work and school week after the Labor Day holiday, this is CNN 10 and I`m Carl Azuz. Welcome to

everyone watching worldwide. If you`re just now returning from a summer break, it`s great to see you again. In the U.S. state of California, this

gives you an idea of why the governor just declared a state of emergency.

It applies to five counties in the central and southern areas of the state. That`s where three wildfires are burning. They`ve chewed through tens of

thousands of acres. They`ve forced thousands of people to evacuate and they have destroyed some homes. Statewide, California has lost more land to

wildfires this year than at any other year on record.

More than two million acres have burned in 2020 and though the state has a wildfire season which typically lasts from the spring through the fall. It

often hits its worst point in October and November, so fire officials are particularly concerned about that. Over the weekend California broke

temperature records that have stood since the 1950s.

Though it`s been cooler than average in the central part of the United States, areas of the west have seen sweltering heat waves and that can make

wildfires worse. In the state`s hot dry conditions, lightning strikes have been blamed for causing many of the wildfires, but a party where a type of

firework was set off is responsible for one of the recent ones. In addition to the round the clock efforts of the firefighters, the state of emergency

declaration will speed up help and money to the residents who`ve been affected.

Next story, there`s an election coming up in America. You might have heard a little something about that. It will determine all 435 voting seats of

the U.S. House of Representatives. It will decide 35 of the 100 seats of the U.S. Senate and it will determine who sits in the White House for the

next four years. In most modern elections, Americans have gotten presidential results at some point on election night.

Enough votes were tallied fast enough to make this happen. One prominent exception, of course, was in the year 2000 when the Florida recount delayed

those results for weeks. Could concerns about COVID-19 and delays associated with mail-in voting keep Americans in suspense after November

3rd of this year?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Campaigning, fundraising, debates. More fundraising, two conventions, more debates and finally the vote. The U.S. presidential

election happens every four years on the first Tuesday in November but election day is really just the last step in a year`s long process. It

starts with the primary, when states vote on who should be the nominee for each political party.

There are two major political parties that most American`s identify with, the Republican party and the Democratic party. The Republican party is

considered to be on the right of the political spectrum, supporting positions concerning more conservative while the Democrats fall on the left

supporting positions considered more liberal.

Every summer before the election, the two parties hold week long events called conventions to officially select their nominee. Each state will send

delegates to the conventions who act as representatives of the results from the primary.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Fifty votes for Secretary Clinton and nine votes for Senator Sanders.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The candidate who wins the majority of those delegates then accepts the nomination. Even the sitting president has to be re-

nominated by their party.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Congratulations Dad. We love you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But if he or she has already served two terms, they can`t run again. Once the nominees are secured, it`s on to the general

election. Although the nominees may attack each other as they campaign, they won`t actually face-off until the debates a month before the election.

When it`s finally time to vote, there are three ways to do it, by mail-in ballot for those who can`t make it to the polls, by early voting which

happens days or weeks before election day and by going to the polls on election day. Historically only about 50 to 60 percent of eligible

Americans actually turn out to vote.

In the United States, the candidate with the majority of the votes doesn`t automatically win. The U.S. uses a system called the Electoral College

which gives each state a certain amount of electoral votes. The amount of electoral votes a states gets is determined about how many representatives

they have in Congress.

If a candidate gets the most votes in a state, they get the electoral vote for their state except for Alaska and Maine where they are awarded based on

the statewide and district results. You need 270 out of 538 electoral votes to become president. Some states have historically voted Republican and are

called red states. Others have historically voted Democratic and are called blue states. Some states are swing states which means voters have swung

between Democrats and Republicans depending on the election year.

In a normal year, if the election is a landslide the results could get called shortly after polling stations close in the evening. But if it`s

close, candidates won`t give their victory or concession speeches until the wee hours of the morning. If it`s super close, candidates can request a

recount in certain states. In 2000, George Bush won the state of Florida by just about 1,700 votes.

After a recount, it was only 327 and ultimately the Supreme Court had to weigh in to certify the results. Because of COVID-19, mail-in voting is

expected to increase and states are facing challenges, like shortages of poll workers. It may take some states days or weeks to finalize their

results. After all of that, the winner is sworn in the following January and almost immediately people start preparing for the next election.


AZUZ: 10 Second Trivia. Which of these NASA missions was launched in 1977? Skylab, Galileo, Voyager or Viking. Two unmanned spacecrafts were launched

as part of the Voyager missions in 1977.

And both of them are still out there, farther away from the Earth than Pluto, still gathering info about the universe more than 40 years after

they launched. The cost of the mission when converted to today`s dollars is roughly $2 billion and it`s not just sending data back.

The two spacecraft are also carrying info about Earth. Gold plated copper discs with instructions on how to play them are also onboard Voyager in

case they`re picked up by anything that wants to know about human life. Researchers say that`s very unlikely.

They compare the discs to a tiny message in a bottle thrown into the greatest expanse of oceans but they include greetings in 55 languages,

music, natural and manmade sounds. They also have pictures. Snapshots of human life in the 1970s including this one from the 1972 Olympics. A

depiction of human sport through a footrace and when CNN anchor Don Riddell caught up with the athletes in the shot, he found that some of them had no

idea they`re images were floating in deep space. The voyage continues.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We could not have claimed to know what was in our own solar system until Voyager conducted its tour. It`s "Homeric" odyssey

across the outer solar system.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: People often describe it as one of mankind`s greatest journeys.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is certainly the farthest and the longest. Voyager was originally conceived as a tour of all the giant planets because all the

giant planets were aligned in 1977 and you could go from one to the other.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And that alignment was very rare.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That alignment happens once every 176 years. It ended up that Congress only approved the mission to Jupiter and Saturn but the

engineers and the scientists were very ingenious. And they designed and built the instruments to endure the flights to Uranus and Neptune just on

the off chance that the mission would be approved for that long and that`s what happened. And it`s remarkable to remember what we did not know about

our own solar system. We knew nothing about the structure in Saturn`s rings. We knew very little about its atmosphere.

Neptune is 30 times farther away from the sun than the Earth is. And even in the most powerful telescopes, at the time, was just a -- a small dot of

blue. It`s famous picture. The pale blue dot of Earth right before it departed and went on its way outside -- beyond the planets. Now we are

truly an interstellar species. It is for all these reasons that I think it`s fair to say that Voyager is the Apollo 11 of the planetary program.


AZUZ: A flying V, ain`t just a historic guitar. It`s also a model aircraft and a possible glimpse of what`s to come. Dutch engineers recently gave

this design a test flight. Passengers, fuel and cargo would all fit inside the wings and the flying V would theoretically save fuel over the modern

tried and true jet design. But it still need work. It`s prone to Dutch roll, which is described as being like ice skating and can lead to rough


And of course the engineers want all the landings to be happy ones, down to the letter. The letter "V", so they won`t let this "v" as it is. That could

"v" a mistake. There are "v-ing" immense about getting this right because if it comes to "v". It could be another "v-tory" for a"v"ation.

All right. Searcy, Arkansas is where today`s show lands. It`s where you`ll find Searcy High School. For a chance to get your school mentioned on CNN

10, please subscribe and leave a comment on the most recent program at I`m Carl Azuz.