Return to Transcripts main page

CNN NEWSROOM

Vaccine Developer Puts Product On Hold; Western U.S. Fires: Another Tense Night; Sudan's State Of Emergency: Widespread Flooding; Trump Pushes Baseless Case for Election Fraud; Evidence of Mail-in Ballots Rejected in U.S.; Police Chief Retiring Amid Outrage over Daniel Prude Death; U.S. Markets Fall, Nasdaq in Correction Territory; Coronavirus in Canada; South Africa's Mining Industry Hit Hard by Pandemic; South Africa Slams Trump for Alleged Mandela Insults; Australia Warns Citizens about "Detention" Risk in China. Aired 1-2a ET

Aired September 9, 2020 - 01:00   ET

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


[01:00:00]

KIM BRUNHUBER, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, I'm Kim Brunhuber live from studio seven at CNN's world headquarters in Atlanta.

This is CNN NEWSROOM.

Ahead this hour. A major vaccine developer puts its trial on hold after a participant becomes ill.

Wildfires, winds and extreme temperatures batter the Western U.S.

And U.S. stocks tumble as election fears and worries about coronavirus weigh on investors.

With coronavirus cases rising in England, Prime Minister Boris Johnson is once again tightening restrictions to get this latest resurgence under control.

He is expected to announce new limits on social gatherings to six people instead of 30, which could take effect on Monday.

The move comes as a major effort to develop a vaccine hit a snag.

Drug maker AstraZeneca says late stage trials of its Oxford University vaccine are now on hold after one of the research participants developed an unexplained illness.

AstraZeneca had signed a pledge with eight other vaccine makers to uphold high ethical standards as they develop their drugs.

They promised not to seek government approval too quickly amid concerns that some world leaders, notably U.S. President Donald Trump, are trying to rush a vaccine to market before adequately testing -- has been completed.

Health experts say drug makers need to be transparent with their work. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: We've got to regain the trust of the community about when we say something is safe and effective, they can be confident that it is safe and effective.

And that's the reason why we have to be very transparent with the data as well as what it is that goes into the decision-making process about approving a vaccine.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRUNHUBER: While AstraZeneca's vaccine is under review, another research group appears to be having better luck with its own treatment.

As CNN's Fred Pleitgen reports, Pfizer and BioNTech believe their drug could be approved within weeks.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The German American cooperation of U.S. company, Pfizer, and the German laboratory, BioNTech, say that they are very close and in the home stretch of possibly having a vaccine candidate against the novel candidate ready for regulatory approval by the middle of October.

Now the CEO of BioNTech in an exclusive interview with CNN says that their candidate, called BNT 162, could be ready by the middle of October, but there are still some unknowns.

Which could drag things out till the end of October, possibly even until the middle of November. However, he says that he's very confident that this vaccine will be effective and also safe.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UGUR SAHIN, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, BIONTECH: It has an excellent profile, and I consider this vaccine as a vaccine which is near perfect. Which has a near perfect profile.

We have done preclinical experiments, we have shown that this vaccine is able to protect animals from infection in very tough challenge experiments. And we have, of course, done much more testing than we have published so far.

And this provides us with a lot of confidence in combination with understanding of the mode of action in combination with the safety data coming in from the running trial.

Yes, we believe that we have a safe product and we believe that we will be able to show efficacy.

(END VIDEO CLIP) PLEITGEN: The CEO of BioNTech also said that the company is definitely not cutting any corners when it comes to making the vaccine safe, and ensuring that it's safe.

In fact, both Pfizer and BioNTech both signed a pledge together with seven other pharmaceutical companies saying that when it comes to the development of a vaccine against the novel coronavirus, they will only abide by the highest standards and not cut any corners during the process.

Now BioNTech and Pfizer say that if everything goes according to their plan, they could have as many as 100 million doses ready by the end of 2020, and 1.3 billion by the end of 2021.

Fred Pleitgen, CNN, Berlin.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: Worldwide the virus has now infected more than 27 million people, with almost 900,000 dead.

The outbreak in the U.S. is still the worst in the world by far.

CNN's Erica Hill looks at how the country is trying to manage the crisis.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ERICA HILL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Buses, backpacks, masked. Back to school in the age of COVID.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My daughter is thriving to be around other people.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

It's going to be great to see them.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

[01:05:00]

HILL: Sixteen of the largest school district start today. Of those 14, including Chicago, will begin the year online.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAYOR LORI LIGHTFOOT, CHICAGO: As we said from day, one we're going to be guided by what the public health numbers tell us.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HILL: The first day in Hartford Connecticut postponed after the city was hit with a cyberattack.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAYOR LUKE BRONIN, HARFORD, CONNECTICUT: This was, however, the most expensive and significant attack that the city has been subject to certainly in the last five years.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HILL: Cases still rising at colleges nationwide. The University of Tennessee warning more drastic measures may be needed, and calling out fraternities.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONDE PLOWMAN, CHANCELLOR, UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE, KNOXVILLE: Fraternity leaders communicating to houses how to avoid being caught, telling fraternity members not to get tested.

Actively working to avoid isolation and quarantine is reckless. And it will further spread this virus.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HILL: West Virginia University just suspended more than two dozen students for COVID-related violations and moved classes online.

New cases over the past week are holding steady in nearly half the states, 15 posting a decline.

But among the 11 seeing an increase, the states in red, two former hot spots, Arizona and Florida. New cases are up 20 percent in the last week.

New York City announcing it will now stop buses from states required to quarantine upon arrival to ensure compliance.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAYOR BILL DIBLASIO: The officers will literally be going on the buses. This is so important to keeping us safe.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HILL: Travelers from 35 states and territories must quarantine for 14 days when arriving in the Tri-State area.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is a virus that is still among us. It ebbs and flows.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HILL: New ads trying to recruit more diverse volunteers for vaccine trials. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (Voice Over): Someone like you who wants things to go back to normal.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HILL: As nine pharmaceutical companies working on those vaccines issue a rare joint pledge in the face of mounting political pressure from the president.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We're going to have a vaccine very soon, maybe even before a very special date. You know what date I'm talking about.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ALBERT BOURLA, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, PFIZER: We will develop our products, our vaccines, using the highest ethical standards and the most scientific rigor (ph) processes.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HILL: Dr. Fauci stressing a vaccine without public trust won't be effective.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: We've got to regain the trust of the community about when we say something is safe and effective, they can be confident that it is safe and effective.

And that's the reason why we have to be very transparent with the data.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HILL: The key to controlling this virus is testing, according to multiple directors at the National Institutes of Health.

They made that statement in a blog post on Tuesday, noting that both asymptomatic and symptomatic people should be tested. If you think you've been in contact with someone who has the virus, get a test.

That directly contradicts the revised guidance from the CDC, but the NIH notes that testing and contact tracing, these are measures that can be taken that can ultimately lead to people returning safely to the workplace and to school.

In New York, I'm Erica Hill, CNN.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: Dr. William Schaffner joins me now. He's a professor in the division of infectious diseases at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Thank you very much for joining us today, Doctor.

I want to start with the news that we heard.

What should we make of the fact that those human tests of a coronavirus vaccine have been put on hold because of the potentially unexplained illness in one of the participants?

DR. WILLIAM SCHAFFNER, PROFESSOR, VANDERBILT UNIVERSITY MEDICAL CENTER: Well, Kim, it's standard operating procedure; if an unexpected medical event occurs that's serious enough then things are put on hold and that event is investigated.

We should be aware we don't know whether this person received the placebo, the salt solution, or the vaccine.

And so that will have to be determined by an external group that will look at this very carefully. It's called the data safety monitoring board.

They'll check that all out and see whether there might be something causal or just coincidental.

BRUNHUBER: How normal is this type of thing?

SHAFFNER: We expect if we're dealing with a vaccine that we are now giving to older people, people who have chronic underlying illnesses, from time to time a serious medical event will occur.

And we have to determine then whether it occurs more frequently in the people who receive the vaccine than in the people who received the placebo.

Sometimes, that's pretty straightforward. Other times, it can be difficult to determine.

BRUNHUBER: All right. A lot of people are kind of wary about this vaccine. Should we be reassured that nine vaccine makers say they've sign a joint pledge saying essentially they won't rush or cut corners to get premature government approval for a vaccine?

[01:10:00]

SHAFFNER: Well, it's very unusual that a letter like that or a press release had to be made on that subject.

Because, in my experience, the companies that develop vaccines are very, very ethical, they're very, very rigorous.

The fact that they had to say this, they had perceived that both out in the public and in the medical community there was a lot of skepticism. Because there's been a concern that the Food & Drug Administration's decisions have become politicized.

And so the manufacturers wanted to distance themselves from that and reassure all of us that they are going by the rules and that science is the rule.

BRUNHUBER: Yes. That's exactly the question. What do we make of that mixed messaging?

On one hand, President Trump says a vaccine could be ready by election day, the CDC has asked states to ready facilities to distribute a coronavirus vaccine by November 1st.

But coronavirus adviser Dr. Fauci is insisting a vaccine will not be ready by then, more likely by the end of the year.

So despite what we're hearing from the vaccine makers, should people worry that the release of the vaccine might be driven more by politics than science?

SHAFFNER: Well, there is a lot of concern about that, and I've shared some of that concern.

The statement by the manufacturers is very solid, we've listened to Dr. Fauci. His comments are very solid and science based, and we certainly hope that that carries the day.

We're looking forward to that but we're watching things very carefully.

BRUNHUBER: All right. One thing I was watching carefully, a story I saw out of Italy in one of the cities that was the coronavirus epicenter.

A hospital examining coronavirus survivors six months later since this all happened, and almost half the patients say they don't feel as though they're fully cured.

So we're getting just another snapshot of the so-called long haul. How much does that worry you?

SHAFFNER: Well, the more we learn about COVID, this virus, the nastier it gets. And it's quite clear that some patients, half, a third -- the reports are just starting to come in -- are having long- term effects.

Such that they don't get back to their full sense of vigor and they can have some troubling, lasting symptoms.

Some people have some difficulty thinking, others have backaches, other kinds of pains, a sense of fatigue, a loss of energy.

They need to be followed and we need to develop our knowledge base around this further so we can help those patients recover as completely as possible.

It's another reason for all of us to wear masks and do the social distancing to depress the spread of this virus as much as possible.

This is not a casual virus as some have alleged. And it's not going to just disappear.

We have to do our bit to protect ourselves and everyone else around us.

BRUNHUBER: A very important message to end on. Thank you so much for talking to us, Dr. William Schaffner. We appreciate it.

SHAFFNER: My pleasure.

BRUNHUBER: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says the U.S. is considering sanctions against Belarus after the reported abduction of an opposition leader.

Maria Kolesnikova disappeared on Monday.

Two of her associates say they were all driven to the border with Ukraine where the opposition leader climbed out of a car window and started walking back towards Belarus. She was captured by border patrol.

The president of Belarus blames the U.S. for the month long protests in this country. Activists say his reelection and early august was rigged.

In Russia, at least three opposition volunteers have been hospitalized after masked men attacked their office with an unknown yellow liquid.

The office is the local headquarters for Putin critic, Alexei Navalny, who German doctors say was poisoned last month.

CNN's Matthew Chance is Moscow.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SNR. INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, this is yet more evidence of the dangers facing opposition activists in Russia.

This time, an office in the Siberian city of Novosibirsk which opposition workers linked with anti-corruption campaigner Alexei Navalny have been using as local headquarters ahead of forthcoming local elections there.

Security cameras recorded two masked men bursting into the office and dousing it with an unknown liquid before running away.

The office was evacuated and some of those inside are reported to have suffered breathing difficulties, one of them passing out. At least three of them were taken to hospital by ambulance where they were treated and later discharged.

But there are heightened fears among opposition activists in Russia as Alexei Navalny himself lies in a Berlin clinic with suspected nerve agent poison.

The latest update on his condition is that it's improved, he's out of a medically induced coma. He's been weaned off his mechanical ventilator, the clinic says he's also now responding to voices.

[01:15:00]

But doctors say it's still too early to know what long term effects his serious poisoning may have had.

Russian officials meanwhile still refusing to open an investigation into the suspected poisoning of the Kremlin's most prominent critic despite growing international calls for them to do so or face consequences.

Matthew Chance, CNN, Moscow.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: Chilling words from the mouth of one camper. "There's fire all around us."

One of many people lifted out of the danger zone in California. We'll have more this unprecedented fire season ahead.

Plus the worst may be yet to come in Sudan. Where heavy rain and unprecedented flooding have already devastated parts of the country.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BRUNHUBER: A difficult situation at a packed refugee camp in Greece is now much worse.

Reuters reports authorities are investigating after a large fire broke out at the Moria refugee camp on the island of Lesbos.

Some 12,000 people have been living there, more than four times the camp's capacity. So far there have been no reports of injuries.

Now it's another tense night for large sections of the Western U.S. as wildfires burn in several states.

Utah, Oregon, Washington State and of course, California are all battling flames.

More than two dozen major flames are burning across California and spreading fast thanks to strong winds that will likely last into Wednesday.

Nearly 400 people and a number of pets have been airlifted out of harm's way.

Now this satellite image from NASA shows almost the entire Pacific Coast covered in white smoke. I want to bring in now Chief Warrant Officer Five Kipp Goding who's a

pilot who's taken part in some of those rescues. And he's with us from Fresno, California.

Thank you very much for speaking with us, Chief Goding.

You've flown for 25 years in the army. Compare this to the conditions you've experienced out there serving?

CHIEF KIPP GODING, CHIEF WARRANT OFFICER FIVE, U.S. ARMY: Well, being in California, we pretty much experience this every summer.

The summer's are getting longer and longer. So it's pretty normal for us, we gear up for it, train up for it and try to be as prepared as we can.

BRUNHUBER: Are these fires though -- we've seen some amazing shots from the air. It must be really incredible flying above it, having to deal with the heat and smoke.

Tell us what it looks like, what it feels and smells like?

GODING: Well, it looks a lot worse in person than it does and some of the footage that I've seen.

But we're focused on our job, trying to get in safely and evac these people that are stranded.

[01:20:00]

You do feel the heat and certainly, you smell the smoke.

And anybody that goes back packing or camping and stays by the campfire and then you get home and you go to wash your clothes the next and they smell like smoke.

We certainly stink of smoke. It permeates everything in the cockpit.

BRUNHUBER: Having covered fires in California for many years, no matter how dire things seem some people who in these fires don't want to leave their homes.

Did you come across that? Trying to convince people to get out while they can?

GODING: We did. Luckily, we have great law enforcement, professionals that try to gather people together and convince them that they need to evacuate.

There's no sense staying there trying to defend your home and then it's too late to evac. So nothing's more important than getting yourself out.

So luckily, they do that for us. They get people consolidated somewhere safely for us to land and pick them up. This being a quick- moving fire, there were many sites that they did not have a law enforcement to help organize that.

So our crew chiefs, we have two crew chiefs with the aircraft, that exit the aircraft and go talk to the people on the ground and try to convey to them that they need to grab whatever they can and come get on board the aircraft.

And to tell them hey, we're going to make another trip to come in and pick up other people so don't get excited, we're going to get everybody out.

And there were some people in some spots that decided to stay, and we tried to convince them to come.

And hopefully everything worked out fine, and they were able to get themselves out or they were able to get a new site and pick them up.

BRUNHUBER: We were speaking with some experts earlier who were saying that these fires here are unprecedented, the evacuations that you have been doing. People can't remember having to make so many evacuations.

What's making this one so tough?

GODING: Every year is a record year for us. We have had a couple good winters with some good precip but we've been in a drought for a long time as well.

So it just builds up. And it's hot tinder just waiting for that dry lightning to set it off.

BRUNHUBER: You make it seem so routine, but this is obviously very dangerous. I know two helicopter pilots have died on the West Coast in the last couple of months fighting wildfires.

How much is that on your mind?

GODING: I feel very sad for those guys. They're a lot of ex-military themselves. We luckily have a four-person crew and so we're constantly challenging each other, making sure everybody is paying attention, make sure everybody's contributing information and keeping us safe.

Sectors that scan and the various stuff. So it really helps a lot having more than one person in the aircraft.

If you're one person and you have something that doesn't sound right with the aircraft or you're paying attention to something and you descend a little bit, you have nobody to challenge you, to keep you in that safe area.

And luckily, we have (inaudible) so we do have the ability to, I think --

BRUNHUBER: So far --

GODING: -- operate a lot safer.

BRUNHUBER: Yes -- sorry. So far there's zero containment. Do you think you'll have to go back in?

GODING: Oh, of course. Yes. We went in last night and evacuated another 160 or so people. And then right now, currently, the weather is a little bit poor, we have poor visibility.

But whenever somebody calls, if we have the weather, we're going to go get them.

BRUNHUBER: All right. Well, listen, the governor has already praised the bravery of you and other pilots who are doing this.

Keep safe, all the best. And we appreciate all your efforts out there.

Chief Kipp Goding in Fresno, California. Thank you.

GODING: Thank you.

BRUNHUBER: All right. Well, let's turn now to meteorologist, Pedram Javaheri, who joins us more with the conditions in the Western U.S.

What are you looking for, Pedram?

PEDRAM JAVAHERI, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Yes, Kim. Of course, we're looking for a pattern change here in the weather.

And that is exactly what is going to change here and needed to be changed here to give the firefighters the upper hand.

I often say it is that that dictates which happens here.

No matter how much manpower you put on top of these flames, if the weather pattern is going against you, this certainly is not going to help (inaudible).

I'll break this down here for you momentarily. But you'll notice we have now the second, third, and fourth largest fires in state history taking place simultaneously.

Of course, number two and number three now nearly entirely contained, those are fires from the past several weeks, number four being the August Complex upwards -- we're about 24 percent containment there.

But here we go. Five parts of at least five states underneath these red flag warnings meaning winds are still going to be howling across this region, conditions still bone dry.

And that's the concern with an elevated landscape like this across the state of California and Oregon.

In fact, it is region-wide as far as the coverage is concerned where nearly 90 large active fires -- in California, about 23 of them from really north to south.

That's about a 1,300 kilometer stretch of land from the borders of Oregon and California all the way to the borders of Mexico and California where we have fires in place there.

But you've got to look at this.

[01:25:00]

The amount of land that has been consumed just in recent months equivalent to about 900,000 hectares of land or about 2.2 million acres of land which is roughly about half of the state -- the size of the U.S. State of New Jersey there.

And about two percent, in other words -- two percent of the state of California in its entirety that has been consumed by fires in recent months.

Now we want to look ahead to those temperatures, see what the month of September -- at least the next two to three weeks bring us.

And the Climate Prediction Center gives us an above average possibility for these temperatures to remain warm.

So, certainly, that's not going to help with the firefighting efforts.

And then we look for rainfall. What are we looking for when it comes to weather's impacts on rainfall?

We know rain plays a significant role in giving firefighters the upper hand.

In fact, historically speaking with wildfires, about 15 millimeters of rainfall is needed to stop the spread of wildfires and about 50 millimeters is needed to extinguish fires depending on the size of these fires.

Now I can tell you, across the state of California, 50 millimeters has not been seen in about six months' time. And unfortunately the forecast looking into the next two to three weeks doesn't bring any rainfall into the State of California, Kim.

For the State of Oregon with critical concern's still left in place there, we do expect a possibility here of some rainfall, possibly next Tuesday. So about six to seven days out here for the next chance of rainfall in Oregon.

But California certainly doesn't look like much in the way of precip in the next couple of weeks, Kim.

BRUNHUBER: That's unlucky. All right. Thank you so much, Pedram Javaheri. Appreciate it.

Sudan is facing a state of emergency with unprecedented rain and flooding devastating the country.

More than 100 people have been killed and still aid agencies warn the situation could get even worse in the weeks to come.

CNN's Nima Elbagir reports. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN SNR. INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: In Sudan, a crisis in the heart of the capital.

In the twin cities of Omdurman and Khartoum where the two Niles meet, flood waters fill the streets.

The government here says this is the highest they've been for a century.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

IQBAL MOHAMMED ABBAS, PRESIDENT, WOMEN & CHILDREN'S ASSOCIATION (Through Translator): When I saw the young men blocking the water of the Nile with their bodies until the sacks are delivered to them in order to raise the level of the barricades, i remembered what happened during the flood of 1998, when their grandfathers did the same by blocking the water with their bodies.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

In a matter of days, over 100 people have died and hundreds of thousands displaced.

People are coming together to do what they can but the rising waters are unrelenting.

For a country already struggling with crushing debt after years of dictatorship under former president Omar al-Bashir, this is almost too much to bear.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

AHMED BASTAWY, RESIDENT OF KHARTOUM'S OMDURMAN DISTRICT (Through translator): The authorities came and saw this scene. They provided us with soil and sacks.

I said God bless you but we failed to block the water and the houses were destroyed.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ELBAGIR: And more is still to come. September is rainy season in Sudan and the waters show no sign of subsiding. The question is how much more of this people here can take.

Nima Elbagir, CNN, London.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: Next on CNN. How President Trump is sowing more doubt around the integrity of November's presidential election. Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [01:30:54]

KIM BRUNHUBER, CNN ANCHOR: The U.S. president visited the battleground state of North Carolina Tuesday as his campaign moves into the home stretch.

Now, as you see here, Donald Trump didn't wear a mask and neither did many of his supporters in the crowd.

And in another key swing state, Florida, he touted his record on the environment even though in an illustration, he slashed the number of critical protections.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Number one since Teddy Roosevelt -- who would've thought? Trump is a great environmentalist. Did you hear that, Ed? Did you hear that? That's good. And I am. I am. I believe strongly in it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRUNHUBER: A new NBC NEWS/Marist poll of likely voters shows Mr. Trump and Joe Biden are tied in Florida with 48 percent each. Now with less than two months to go before Election Day, both the Trump and Biden campaigns are debuting new ads. Biden's ad is focused on easing social tensions and creating a fresh start in the U.S.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is our chance to put the darkness of the past four years behind us, to end the anger, the insults, the division, the violence, and start fresh in America.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRUNHUBER: And President Trump's new ad pushes the idea that the worst parts of the pandemic are behind us.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In the race for a vaccine, the finish line is approaching, safety protocols in place, and the greatest economy the world has ever seen coming back to life.

But Joe Biden wants to change that.

JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: I would shut it down.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRUNHUBER: Biden's campaign recently spent almost $17 million on TV and digital ads in nine swing states, while the Trump campaign spent just over a $4 million.

On Tuesday President Trump also launched a new baseless accusation on how he believes Democrats will attempt to commit fraud in the upcoming election. He told supporters to act as poll watchers to prevent fraud at voting locations. Have a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: We've got to be careful with those ballots. Watch those ballots. I don't like it. You know, you have a Democrat governor, you have all these Democrats watching that stuff. I don't like it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRUNHUBER: And here is Pamela Brown on other ways the president is trying to sow doubt around November's election.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

PAMELA BROWN, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Tonight, the final sprint to Election Day is on. But this year, it is not just campaigning that looks different. Already, the incumbent in o the White House is laying the groundwork almost daily for chaos, even encouraging voting twice which is illegal.

TRUMP: So let them send it in and let them go vote, and if their system is as good as they say it is, then obviously they won't be able to vote.

BROWN: That prompted strong resistance from Republican election officials.

FRANK LAROSE, OHIO SECRETARY OF STATE: Don't test our boards of elections. They're good at this. Go ahead and submit your ballot once.

BROWN: On Monday, Trump once again railed on mail-in ballots.

TRUMP: You're sending 80 million ballots all over the country, 80 million ballots, non-requested.

BROWN: Trump is referring to the nine states plus Washington D.C. that will soon be mailing out ballots to every registered voter -- a change this year in some places in response to the pandemic.

The president is undermining mail-in ballot voting in states where it could hurt him and encouraging it in states where it could help him. Earlier this year he admitted why.

TRUMP: The things they had in there were crazy. They had things, levels of voting that if you ever agreed to it, you'd never have a Republican elected in this country again.

BROWN: While the president and his allies claim without evidence the increase in mail ballots will lead to widespread voter fraud, there is evidence of widespread rejection of mail-in ballots because of human error.

In this year's primary, more than half a million ballots were thrown out for simple mistakes. Such as signatures not matching the states records, a missing signature, invalid problems and ballots arriving after the deadline.

[01:35:01]

NILS GILMAN, TRANSITION INTEGRITY PROJECT: You have to go through a process to verify that the ballot is legitimate. And of course, you know, human beings being human sometimes make mistakes.

BROWNS: Election experts say one likely scenario is what is known as the blue shift with Trump ahead winning on election night in the rural states where he has more supporters and Biden pulling in front winning after election night through mail-in ballots.

The counting of the ballots don't begin in key battleground states of Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania until Election Day.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST: Barack Obama, 47-years-old --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Donald Trump wins the presidency.

BROWN: Meaning a declared winner on election night is highly unlikely.

GILMANT: In some swing states, Trump is plus 40 among voters who plan on voting on Election Day. These votes will be counted elections night and minus 60 among voters who are planning on voting absentee by mail. The transition integrity thinner who has played out these scenarios in mock elections says if the election count is close, every scenario -- what is gamed doubt, shows a political crisis and street violence will ensue.

GILMAN: You have two totally different narratives being promoted by different media eco systems and people are living with really different factual understandings of what took place on Election Day.

BROWN: Even though the election is on November 3rd, voters in North Carolina can already send in their votes through mail-in ballots, and early voting starts in several states soon, such as Pennsylvania.

Now, election experts say that you should plan to vote just like you would plan to go to the grocery store during the pandemic. And they say if you are voting by mail, to read the instructions carefully to make sure your ballot counts.

Pamela Brown, CNN -- Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: The police chief in Rochester, New York says he is stepping down at the end of this month after days of protests over the death of a black man while in police custody.

Daniel Prude died after officers forcefully restrained him during a mental health arrest back in March. In a statement, Police Chief La'Ron Singletary says, "As a man of integrity, I will not sit idly by while outside entities attempt to destroy my character. The mischaracterization and the politicization of the actions that I took after being informed of Mr. Prude's death is not based on facts and it's not what I stand for."

The city's mayor is promising changes.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MAYOR LOVELY A. WARREN -- ROCHESTER, NEW YORK: While the timing and tenor of these resignations is difficult, we have faced tough times before. I truly believe that we will get through this.

I will be meeting with city council to chart a path forward. I can assure this community that I am committed to instituting the reforms necessary in our police department.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BRUNHUBER: Prude's sister has filed a lawsuit against the city, the police chief and 13 officers. She says her brother was suffering from a psychotic episode at the time of his arrest.

Wall Street's losing streak is getting worse by the day as investors are concerned over coronavirus resurgence and the U.S.-China relations. The Dow fell 635 points on. But the Nasdaq's plunge officially puts that index in correction territory, defined as a 10 percent drop from its most recent peak. Oil prices also fell to their lowest level in three months.

Let's bring in CNN's John Defterios, live in Abu Dhabi with more. John, how the mighty have fallen after a record run for six months. Are we seeing, you know, some commonsense return to the market?

JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: That's a good way to describe it, Kim. This is the first day back in the United States on Monday after that long three-day weekend and Tuesday was a bloodbath, if you will.

This makes sense. As you are suggesting, we had a 40 to 50 percent gain over that six-month period and the valuations got very, very high.

The Nasdaq now in correction territory, you see some individual stocks taking a pummeling now. Apple down 16 percent since the start of the selling last week. And that momentum carried right through the weekend.

The good news, if you're looking for stability, if you look at the futures, we're in the green. The Dow and the S&P in a tight range above the line but the Nasdaq is right near its high for the day with a gain of better than 1 percent in the Asian trading block session as we see it.

You talked about some of the themes, Kim. COVID-19 clearly is one of them because government has spent so much money on stimulus. As we go into the second wave, can they continue to support unemployment benefits and the medical systems? So a big question mark.

The election -- investors don't like uncertainty and there's a boatload now because of the potential outcome being so close and the contesting of the mail-in ballots by Donald Trump.

And finally, U.S.-China -- actually, Donald Trump said in the last 24 hours, he wants to decouple from China. That's a lot of rhetoric, but again, investors don't like it. And that is what we are seeing in Asia.

[01:40:00]

DEFTERIOS: Red across the board if you look at the markets here with losses of around three-quarters to 1 percent with the exception of Australia with the deep recession there. We're looking at losses of 2 percent.

You talked about oil. This is despite the fact that OPEC has been cutting production at a record rate with its partners from Russia and the OPEC Plus states. So we see that $40 benchmark gone and worries about demand again because of the second wave of COVID-19. Actually worries now about spilling well into 2021, Kim.

BRUNHUBER: All right. One thing I'm interested in Tesla -- it was, you know, in a group of companies that soared but then Tuesday it was punished badly, right?

DEFTERIOS: Yes. And there is an exception here for Tesla because it was hoping for an invitation to the S&P 500, the broad index in the United States. And Standard and Poor's, the company that has that index was thinking that perhaps the Tesla -- the valuations were too high. It was a bet made by investors on the future because it only produces a half a million cars a year.

So it was left out of the S&P. What did it mean to Tesla? A drop of 21 percent but the stock was up better than 230 percent so far in 2020 alone. On the same day General Motors took a stake in Nikola, which is a competitive Tesla that doesn't have cars on the market yet. But it makes trucks. And as a result Nikola stock went up 40 percent. So pockets of frothiness, Kim, still in the market.

BRUNHUBER: Interesting. All right. Thank you so much for your analysis, John Defterios in Abu Dhabi, appreciate it.

As coronavirus cases surged in South Africa, the government is forced to make some tough choices to keep its lucrative coal mining industry up and running. Our exclusive report next.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BRUNHUBER: A recent spike in coronavirus cases is causing concern in Canada. Infections are way up in the last week alone. The country has now surpassed 135,000 confirmed cases according to Johns Hopkins University.

CNN's Paula Newton has details on the stark warning from officials.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) PAULA NEWTON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Canadian health officials are putting it on the line, spelling it out for Canadians and saying, look, if we're to avoid a rapid resurgence, people need to cut down on those social interactions.

What's concerning is the rising cases, 25 percent in the last week alone, about 600 cases on average in Canada now. That may not seem like a lot, but it is nearly double at what it was one time in the summer. And of course, that is due to the reopenings.

But authorities saying look, some of the social interactions, people just have to cut it out. There are nearly four dozen cases related to karaoke bar incident in Quebec, and a wedding in Toronto now linked to nearly two dozen cases.

[01:44:55]

NEWTON: All of this very concerning for authorities here who so far have done a fairly good job of containing this pandemic. How, how was it different? Well, really mask wearing -- those orders are in place in the vast majority of locations in Canada. But what's also crucial is a close border with the United States, closed to all but non -- for all nonessential traffic. And then also a 14-day quarantine the minute anyone enters Canada here, unless you are flight crew or perhaps a truck driver, you must quarantine for 14 days.

Canadian are already saying look we do not want to really let go of all of that hard work, and especially now that the schools are opening. They're saying it is time for people to just cut down the social interactions. In British Columbia, in fact, they've now closed down nightclubs as that province continues to deal with more cases each week.

Again, a critical week here in Canada. They're not calling this a second wave yet and not calling for any kind of shutdowns but the concern is there.

Paula Newton, CNN -- Ottawa.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: The South African government is keeping its lucrative minding industry up and running despite a surge in COVID-19 cases.

CNN's Eleni Giokos got exclusive access inside one of the country's largest coal mines to see just how dangerous the work is during a pandemic.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ELENI GIOKOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Descending more than 200 meters into a coal mine has always carried a certain level of risk, and at (INAUDIBLE) they've always taken serious precautions.

On my belt, an emergency breathing pack and a sensor that will stop the heavy machinery if I get too close.

Still, working through South Africa's COVID-19 peak brings a new level of fear to even the most hardened of miners.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I prayed for (INAUDIBLE), the greatest survivor who tested positive in these mines.

GIOKOS: Pela Elo Mtombeni (ph) was this mine's first employee to come down with the virus. She's grateful to be back underground.

And the sector is just as essential for South Africa's economy. Around 80 percent of its power still comes from coal.

How many of those jobs are essential and critical skills that aren't easily replaced?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 90 percent Above 90 percent, but I must say, everybody that you have on the mines is entirely critical. Everybody that's working underground is critical.

GIOKOS: But even with a constant mask wearing, the constant sanitizing between shifts, the clinic on site, cases here continue to rise. More than 100 positive cases at this mine alone.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We put about 16 percent loss in productivity like we have experience on this particular mine.

GIOKOS: I mean, look, we're still heading towards the peak. Does this worry you? Does it scare you that the production losses are going to be inevitable?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If I said I was not worried; I would be lying to you. I'm definitely worried. COVID-19 will be an eye opener, especially in the mining sector. Right across the board.

You could see the numbers are rising. in having this task for force, Now, when this Barras comes in it finds any immune system gadgets already weakened and then it's (INAUDIBLE).

(END VIDEO CLIP)

GIOKOS: It's community transmission outside (INAUDIBLE) but it's driving the spreads here. And the union says, not enough is being done to address it.

PERCY SIMELANE, SASOL MINE: Once you lift demand I think they -- they forgot part two.

And the theme was look after yourself.

Percy Simelane (ph) is returning home after nine hours under ground.

SIMELANE: They say the COVID-19 that takes your lungs. I feel vulnerable under.

GIOKOS: Even at the facile owned housing complex where he lives with his wife and two sons, he says no one from this company has come to talk about COVID-19 since the pandemic began.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE) Stop, stop.

GIOKOS: But he'll keep going underground like so many in the sector. He's an essential employee and the job means everything.

Eleni Giokos, CNN -- Secunda, South Africa.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: South Africa is condemning U.S. President Donald Trump over allegations in a new book by his former attorney. Michael Cohen claims Mr. Trump crudely insulted South African President Nelson Mandela following his death in 2013.

A statement from South Africa's ANC party described Mr. Trump as divisive and disrespectful. The White House called Cohen's book lies. But that's just the tip of the iceberg.

CNN's Brian Todd reports.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Michael Cohen now says working for Donald Trump was like being in a cult. The President's former lawyer, fixer and henchman is out with a new book title "Disloyal", in which he describes Trump as a bully, a liar, and as he told NBC NEWS, a blatant racist.

[01:50:03]

MICHAEL COHEN, FORMER TRUMP PERSONAL ATTORNEY: Right after Nelson Mandela had passed away, and I talk about this in the book, asked me if I had known of any country that's run by a black person that is not an S hole and I said well, how about America, at which he game me the proverbial F.U.?

TODD: The White House calls Cohen a disgraced felon who has lost all credibility and just trying to profit off his lies. It is one of many denials and counter attacks that the President and his team have made this summer, as an onslaught of tell-all books about Trump and his family have hit bookstores.

ALEX BURNS, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: You know, I don't think I've ever seen this kind of avalanche of insider accounts on a presidency this close to an election, or even at any point while the president is still serving.

TODD: Another insider account: "Melania and Me" by Melania Trump's former friend and adviser, Stephanie Winston Wolkoff -- depicts a cold relationship between Melania and Ivanka Trump. Both denied it. Many of these tell-alls reinforce what some voters believe about the president's public personality.

But his niece, Mary Trump, has another take on the family. In her book titled "Too Much and Never Enough". MICHAEL D'ANTONIO, AUTHOR, "THE TRUTH ABOUT TRUMP": She really goes

after his father and his mother in an analytical way and reveals the cruelty that was practice against Donald himself as a child. The way that his treated him the way that his father treated him, his mother's absence.

TODD: Trump tweeted that Mary Trump's book was an untruthful account from a, quote, "seldom seen niece who knows little about me".

Investigative journalist Bob Woodward's book, "Rage": about to be released has shocking details of the president's behavior and decision making during the coronavirus pandemic and the racial justice protests.

The season of bombshells began with a book by Trump's former national security adviser, John Bolton, which claimed Trump asked for China's help in this year's election and got played by Kim Jong-un. Trump called Bolton a warmongering fool. A common theme in many of these tell-all's analysts say: they all paint unflattering portraits of the president's character and temperament.

D'ANTONIO: The people who work around the president and his family work with so much lying and deception, they experience so much fantasy. And they are enlisted and promoting these lies and deceptions that eventually they reached a point where they can't stand it anymore.

TODD: But will any of these books hurt the president on Election Day? Or will they have the same lack of impact as the Access Hollywood tape released just a few weeks before the 2016 Vote.

BURNS: I don't know that these books are going to take people who are poor Trump supporters and turn them into Trump skeptics. I don't know that it's going to crack the president's political base but I think that it reinforces and emboldens the folks who were pretty much inclined to vote against the president to begin with.

TODD: One other trait that these tell-all books share, their ability to fly off the shelves. They've all been hot sellers, especially the books that Trump says he hates.

As one literary agent told "The New York Times" quote "you pray for Trump to hate your book, and you pray for him to tweet about it.

Brian Todd, CNN -- Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: All right. we're going to take a short break.

When we come back, films hoping to win best pictures at the Oscars will soon have to meet new inclusion standards. We'll have more on that, next.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[01:55:01]

BRUNHUBER: Australia is warning its citizens, they could be at risk of arbitrary detention if they travel to China. This comes after two Australian journalists in China were rushed out of the country following a diplomatic stand off.

CNN's Ivan Watson has the story.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Two Australian journalists in China forced to hide inside their country's diplomatic missions, after police showed up knocking at their doors late at night and told them they were barred from leaving the country.

It triggered a five-day diplomatic standoff before a deal was finally struck. They've been allowed to fly back to Sydney.

BILL BIRTLES, AUSTRALIAN JOURNALIST: It's very disappointing to have to leave under those circumstances. And it's a relief to be back in the country with genuine rule of --

TODD: Last week, the Australian government warned TV reporter Bill Birtles and newspaper correspondent Michael Smith, they needed to get out of China.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Did you feel threatened at all when you worked over there.

MICHAEL SMITH, AUSTRALIAN JOURNALIST: A little bit. Yes. It's a complicated experience but it's great to be here.

WATSON: Australia believed the pair faced THE risk of detention in a case linked to a third Australian, Cheng Lei (ph) who was detained in Beijing almost a month ago.

The former Chinese State TV anchor remains in detention accused of criminally endangering national security.

MARISE PAYNE, AUSTRALIAN FOREIGN AFFAIRS MINISTER: The detention of Australian journalist Miss Cheng Lei and that had raised concerns for Australians.

WATSON: Australian diplomats stepped in to protect Birtles and Smith at a time when Australia's relationship with Beijing is quickly souring. Officials from Canberra say China hit Australia with politically motivated trade sanctions and that their Chinese counterparts won't even speak to them.

Relations deteriorated after Australia pushed for an international inquiry into the origins of COVID-19.

WANG XINING, DEPUTY HEAD OF MISSION, CHINA EMBASSY: Everybody needs to know the reason of this COVID-19. Chinese people also want to know, but the purpose to know the reason IS not to put blame on a place or the people.

WATSON: China said Thursday that officials interrogated the two Australians journalists in the course of routine police work. Canberra continues to warn all its citizens traveling to China that they could be at risk of arbitrary detention.

That risk now a reality for Cheng, and a close call for Birtles and Smith.

Ivan Watson, CNN -- Hong Kong.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BRUNHUBER: Well, that's it for this hour. Thanks for watching. I'm Kim Brunhuber. Please do stay tuned for another hour of news with the outstanding Robyn Curnow after this short break.

You're watching CNN NEWSROOM.

[01:57:45]

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)