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CNN TONIGHT

Trump Holds Rally In Florida; Trump Family Still Not Wearing Masks; Dr. Fauci Taken Out Of Context In Trump Campaign Ad; COVID Cases In U.S. Rising; President Trump Pushing For A Relief Package; Economy Not As Rosy As Trump Describes. Aired 10-11p ET

Aired October 12, 2020 - 22:00   ET

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


[22:00:00]

NATHAN APODACA, VIRAL TIKTOK STAR: I always have a long board or gaming board with me or a skateboard, something a different set of wheels.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST: So, the success has been crazy.

APODACA: Yes.

CUOMO: It is so much it says. I like that, a little dog action there. What does that dog have, what does he have in his mouth that dog?

APODACA: Pillow. Neck pillow.

CUOMO: It is, you relax, man. See, your life is about chilling out. Even your dog is get -- want you to get your chill on.

APODACA: Right.

CUOMO: So, Ocean Spray finds out about it. They send you a truck because you had the car problem. You are selling Merch now based on it and you're just inspiring people to be cool and feel good no matter what comes their way is that the message?

APODACA: Yes. Basically, I mean, like I said, I want everyone to just realize how life is hard but you can just take a simple minute out of your life and just reflect on happiness, you know what I mean, something that makes you smile. Just get out there and do it. You know what I mean, you know what makes you happy. Make yourself smile any time, you know. And then just intend to do that and then your days will be brighter.

CUOMO: Well, look, I love it. I'm glad you've been rewarded for it. Thank you for giving us a reason to smile when there is so much tough stuff going on and to bring Fleetwood back -- Fleetwood mac back into people's minds as well.

Nathan Apodaca, God bless and be well. And thank you, brother.

APODACA: Hey, thank you, man.

CUOMO: Take care. Now ordinarily, D. Lemon would kill me for taking up a minute and 12 seconds of his time but I know he loved that. I know he loved it and I know you love it and I know people are watching

DON LEMON, CNN HOST: I did not.

CUOMO: You loved it.

LEMON: You owe me a minute and 19 seconds.

CUOMO: You -- yes, I'll give it to you, I'll give it to you. I'll give it to you two minutes early tomorrow night but you know you love it. You're a long boarder yourself.

LEMON: You know, I love the song, I am long boarder. Actually, I just saw that guy last night. You know the first thing I saw. I didn't see him. I saw the parody one of Donald Trump with the bleach doing what he does with the Ocean Spray. And I didn't -- and then I ran across it on my Instagram last night and I said, that's where that's coming from. All I had seen was Donald Trump on a long board drinking bleach and then I saw him. You've seen that one, haven't you?

CUOMO: I have. I've seen them all now because I was getting ready for this. But it is so big that I had one of those moments where I realized just in everyday life that I had heard about this, like six times in a day and a half I was like, I got to check this for a second. But it just shows you how just tight everybody is, Don.

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: It's like that we need it.

CUOMO: So desperate.

LEMON: Yes. And I would say we need to laugh. Remember what I said during the whole, when George Floyd was happening that we needed to in a moment cut each other some slack because everybody was so tense and everyone is tense now. I can't -- it's a -- I am -- how do I say this? I'm sick of it. I'm sick of all the craziness. I'm sick of the madness.

I'm just sick of living without facts without a common set of beliefs about what is real and what's not. I'm just really, I want our country to be united. I want people to be united not divided. I don't know if that's going to happen. And I feel like I'm living in La La Land when I see people out, you know, not socially distancing with no masks on and the person who caught it because he didn't wear a mask is telling him it's OK. It's just, it's beyond belief really.

CUOMO: But it is reality. It was interesting. Cory Booker, the senator from New Jersey obviously had that moment that's going viral in its own way about where he said this is not normal. My question to him was isn't it? I mean, people elected Trump.

LEMON: I'm not surprised by any of it. I'm just sick of it. But listen, I got -- why are you -- why are you like pushing him about court packing? Because you are doing the Republicans' work.

CUOMO: No, I'm not. LEMON: Yes.

CUOMO: It is a legitimate question.

Well look. It is not a legitimate question.

LEMON: It's not a -- well, look, it's not a legitimate question in that.

CUOMO: What? Go ahead.

LEMON: During the debate the vice president raised the question. The moderator didn't raise the question. Plus, it is -- this is something that this is a hypothetical. Whether or not -- Joe Biden has said twice at least on tape that I've seen how he feels about court packing. I think it is a distraction from the Republicans --

(CROSSTALK)

CUOMO: Why doesn't he answer?

LEMON: Because he doesn't have to. Just because he doesn't have to --

(CROSSTALK)

CUOMO: Well, he doesn't have to answer it.

LEMON: Yes.

CUOMO: But you don't think it's going to affect people's trust caution?

LEMON: No. No. Because people aren't worried about that. People are concerned about, if you want to know specifically about the court, people are concerned about the Republicans switching and being hypocrites on saying this is an election year. That's what people are concerned about. About hypocrites.

CUOMO: I think people are worried about that too. You're right.

LEMON: People are also -- people are also concerned about where they're going to get their healthcare from.

CUOMO: Yes.

LEMON: Are they going to die from COVID?

CUOMO: They're worried about that too.

LEMON: They're worried about their pre-existing conditions. Whether someone is going to pack -- that is so far down the road. We've had this conversation. You know what it has to do. As Cory Booker said that's a legislative issue. I think that --

(CROSSTALK)

CUOMO: He didn't answer it either.

LEMON: I don't think he has to answer it. Because I think it is a red herring.

CUOMO: It's not a red herring.

LEMON: Because they don't want to talk about how Mitch McConnell has packed the court over the years --

(CROSSTALK)

CUOMO: Yes. They should say that.

LEMON: -- by not allowing --

CUOMO: That's the context for the discussion.

LEMON: Right.

CUOMO: So, I'm with you.

[22:05:01]

LEMON: I would say Mitch McConnell has packed the courts so if you want to ask about the packing courts why don't you ask Mitch McConnell?

CUOMO: Ask both.

LEMON: That's the thing

CUOMO: I agree with you about half of it. I think it matters to people. I think you got Trump voters who aren't going to vote for Trump this time for various reasons. But this matter. And they want to hear Biden who is the better choice in some people's minds.

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: It's never going to happen.

CUOMO: Because he's not FOS.

LEMON: No one is ever going to -- no one is --

CUOMO: And they know he doesn't answer the question.

LEMON: The country will never any -- they won't let anybody pack the court. It's a hypothetical. I'm sure there are some Democrats who want to do it.

(CROSSTALK)

CUOMO: There are a lot of Democrats who say they want to do it.

LEMON: Joe Biden says he -- it's never, ever going to happen.

CUOMO: But how is it never going to happen if they are in control of the House and the Senate?

LEMON: I have this argument with you before and you talked about amendments to the Constitution. You got to do all this. You got to do all that.

CUOMO: This is much easier than an amendment to the Constitution.

LEMON: Yes. Yes. So, I just don't think it will happen. I don't think the country is there yet.

CUOMO: Well, it may not happen but it doesn't mean it's not a legitimate question.

LEMON: Yes. I don't think -- look.

CUOMO: We disagree. Tell me to leave.

LEMON: No, I'm not going to tell you to leave

CUOMO: I want you to tell me to leave.

LEMON: Because you hear it all the time. You're like a masochist. You're like a --

(CROSSTALK)

CUOMO: I've been kicked out of bed.

LEMON: I tell you to -- I tell you have to leave my house, now I'm telling you got to tell you to leave television. All right. I got to see you. I got to talk about this stuff.

CUOMO: I love you, D. Lemon.

LEMON: You, too, my brother. What is that thing on your face? Come on, get a razor.

CUOMO: Shut up.

LEMON: Yes. See you. You shut up. Goodbye.

CUOMO: You shut up.

LEMON: This is CNN TONIGHT. I'm Don Lemon.

I want you to -- because you know, we normally start off with, my gosh. Look at this. Right? I just want to show you something as we get started here. Maybe these are the crowd shots people should be focused on tonight.

Check out these lines. These are people waiting to vote in Georgia today. Look at these lines, hours and hours and hours in line. That's how much it means to them to cast their vote in this election. That is how important this election is.

We don't know who they're voting for. But it gives you an idea where they are, about how it may turn out. But we know it means enough to them that it is worth, it's worth it to be heard.

It's only 22 days until the election, 22 days until election day and the president, President Trump is on stage playing a part and it's not as convincing or is compelling as he thinks it is, nothing to see here. Pay no attention to the deadly pandemic raging through the country. You know what he is? He's a serial recidivist, a repeat offender, reckless. It is never going to change, never ever, ever going to change.

And the people at his rally tonight aren't going to change even though some of them tell us that they would, they'd change their behavior. They'd wear a mask if he told them to. But he doesn't, so they won't.

Talk about -- always -- that Trump is always talking about shit. So, if the president says don't wear a mask you won't wear one. If the president says wear a mask you wear one. But the other side are sheep, OK, whatever.

At a certain point though, I say that because it is not about him. It's about them. It's really about everyone else, the people who sacrificed for others. Isn't that sort of the Christianly thing to do? The Christian thing to do? Sacrifice for others?

This is about the people who sacrifice for others, people who follow the rules, the people who wear a mask, who don't see their friends and their parents. I haven't seen my mom since December -- January, because she lives in a hot spot. I've seen her on face time. But I would love to hug and kiss my mom but I can't. I don't. That is a sacrifice for me and millions of other people.

This is for the people who try to teach their kids while they're working from home or try to feed their kids if they aren't working at all. And behavior like we are seeing tonight and we'll see on the Trump super spreader tour of America increases the risk of the spread of the virus.

It's all part of Trump's ongoing, unreality TV show. He wants us to believe what he says. Not what's actually happening. In reality the virus is getting worse which is really bad news for the country as we head towards the winter months.

The number of cases skyrocketing, we're now averaging about 50,000 new cases per day. Today 31 states reporting an increase in cases. And the COVID-19 death toll in the U.S. now surpassing 214,000.

The danger is real. Florida, where all those people are tonight seeing a rise in the number of new cases. And, yet, the big rally, no social distancing, very few masks. Dr. Anthony Fauci issuing this blunt warning. If anyone in the Trump campaign would bother to even listen.

[22:10:03]

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: We know that is asking for trouble when you do that. We've seen that when you have situations of congregate settings with a lot of people without masks. The data speak for themselves. It happens.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: So, while Trump is on his way to Florida, his doctor, Sean Conley put out a statement saying that the president has tested negative on consecutive days and that Trump is not infectious to others.

Do you believe that? Hard to believe anything with this administration. That's all the information Conley or really Trump is making available to the American public, using a test expert tell us if not meant to detect contagion, if it is not meant to detect contagion that way.

Reporters -- reporters can't dig deeper. OK? Because Dr. Conley has not taken questions in the past. No doubt at the president's direction and the president is also claiming that he is immune which isn't how this whole thing works. None of this is how any of this works. But that doesn't matter to this president. It doesn't matter at all.

What matters is taking the unreality show on the road because the president missed the adoring crowds, really missed them apparently.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: One thing with me the nice part. I went through it. Now they say I'm immune. I can feel -- I feel so powerful. I'll way into that audience.

(CROWD CHEERING)

TRUMP: I'll walk in there and I'll kiss everyone in that audience. I'll kiss the guys and the beautiful women and the -- everybody. I'll just give you a big fat kiss.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: It's so pathetic though. Two hundred fourteen thousand Americans are dead from COVID. This is hardly a matter to joke about. Just doesn't get it. He is not the only one campaigning without a mask either. His son Eric addressing Trump supporters in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin. No mask in sight. Look at that.

Rudy Giuliani addressing a packed group of Trump supporters in Philadelphia without a mask and they're inside both of those events by the way, and no social distancing at the event.

A key Trump ally on Capitol Hill, Utah Republican Senator Mike Lee not wearing a mask at the confirmation hearing for Trump's Supreme Court nominee. You'll remember that Lee tested positive for COVID-19 11 days ago. He says he was cleared by his doctor this morning to attend the hearing but no mask? Seriously? Really?

What about taking precautions to protect fellow senators? You know, just in case? Well, not in Trump's Washington. And there is Trump's chief of staff Mark Meadows who got indignant with reporters who asked him to keep his mask on.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MARK MEADOWS, WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF: Let me do this. Let me pull this away.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, pull away.

MEADOWS: And then that way I can take this off to talk. Well, I'm more than 10 feet away. Well, I'm not going to talk through a mask.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: Who are these people? Really? I'm not going to talk to you because I don't want to wear a mask. I'm just going to run away. Dr. Fauci taking the Trump campaign to task by the way for using a clip of him in a campaign ad without his consent and saying they took his words out of context. Here is part of the ad.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: President Trump tackled the virus head on as leaders should.

FAUCI: I can't imagine that anybody could be doing more.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: And here is what Dr. Fauci originally said from an interview. This was back in March.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FAUCI: I'm not the only one. There is a whole group of us that are doing that. It's every single day. So, I can't imagine that under any circumstances that anybody could be doing more.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: Well, Dr. Fauci sounds like he is pretty done with that kind of flagrant manipulation. Maybe they should use his actual expertise the way that they use it to twist his words. Sounds like he thinks so, too.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FAUCI: I think it is really unfortunate and really disappointing that they did that. It's so clear that I'm not a political person and I have never either directly or indirectly endorsed the political candidate and to take a completely out of context statement and put it in, which is obviously a political campaign ad, I thought was really very disappointing.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: The top expert on infectious disease in this country and they are taking him out of context in a campaign ad. That is where we are.

Here's what's completely clear in the situation. The Trump campaign used Fauci in the ad because he has credibility with voters who are concerned about the deadly virus.

[22:15:05]

President Trump does not and he knows it. And his campaign knows it. Twenty-two days until the election. Make your vote count.

President Trump's rally tonight could be a super spreader event with just three weeks to go before the election. Why salvaging his sinking campaign is more important than protecting his supporters and everyone else?

Lots to discuss. John Avlon, Kaitlan Collins, next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: The president is back on the campaign trail tonight in Florida, his first rally after being hospitalized with coronavirus. You would never think that Trump just experienced this horrific virus firsthand as he talked about kissing everyone in a packed, mostly maskless crowd. He also chose to state that -- chose a state, I should day, that reported over 1,500 new cases today.

Let's discuss. CNN's White House correspondent and woman who works all the time, Kaitlan Collins, and our senior political analyst, John Avlon. Good evening. Kaitlan, I swear every time I turn on my TV on CNN you are there. Do you --

(CROSSTALK)

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: I'm going to move into the White House.

[22:19:59]

LEMON: I was going to say are you sleeping right there where the reporters all line up in the White House? Do you have a little cot?

COLLINS: Yes, I have a sleeping bag.

LEMON: So, Kaitlan, let's talk about this. Just before the president left for the Florida rally, we got this memo from his physician Dr. Conley and says the president tested negative for coronavirus on consecutive days, right?

I mean, this seems -- it seems a little convenient just before he is back on the campaign trail. What do we know about these negative tests and the president's health?

COLLINS: Yes. And the White House actually my colleague D.J. Judd who flew with the president on Air Force One that Dr. Conley actually traveled with the president to this rally in Florida tonight. And so, they released this memo as they were on their way to the president's first trip outside Washington since he tested positive for coronavirus but also apparently since he tested negative.

And so, he says in here that the president has tested negative consecutive days using a rapid test but he doesn't say which days it was that the president tested negative. Was it Sunday and Monday, was it Saturday and Sunday? Because remember on Friday they said they would let us know when the president had tested negative and it took them several more days to do that.

And I think that's because they know that there is this, you know, question around whether or not the president should be going out on the campaign trail and doing events if he is not testing negative yet. Even though the CDC guidelines do say, you know, that after 10 days of your symptoms you can be around other people. I think that raised questions for the president's other events this week.

But, Don, it also comes as they have, you know, they are happy to say when the president has tested negative now --

LEMON: Yes.

COLLINS: -- but they still will not tell us the last time he tested negative before he was diagnosed with coronavirus and that's a very important question. But they will not -- they refused to tell us the answer to that.

LEMON: Yes. That was my next question to you but you answered it. I was going to say why can they tell us now but they won't tell us when the last time he tested negative but they'll tell us, well, he is negative now. So that whole argument about the president's privacy and I don't want to go there, they're hiding something.

John, so, to hold a super spreader rally like this after his own White House was a hot spot, I mean, is this about ego, about desperation in the final weeks of the election, about both? More? How do you see it?

JOHN AVLON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST & ANCHOR: All of the above. Look, we know that Donald Trump needs the rallies as much as his campaign does just for his own ego but to your point, I mean, this is the super spreader tour. And Donald Trump is getting energy from the crowds. He is getting affirmation that he needs. But typically, he is not taking his supporters' health into consideration just like he disregarded that of his staff.

I mean, you have folks waiting in line crowding the space and it looks like, you know, waiting room for the Darwin Awards. And in contrast, one state up you got folks in line for hours and hours and hours to vote. That contrast that you began the show with between those two states that neighbor each other is so powerful. It says a lot about where our country is today.

LEMON: Yes. Well, and also, listen. We don't know who is in line, who they're going to vote for.

AVLON: Definitely not.

LEMON: But much of the -- much of the counties that we're showing are near Atlanta. Right? Or close to the city of Atlanta. In the neighboring suburbs, which tend to be very liberal.

AVLON: By southern standards.

LEMON: Yes. By southern standards. You put that right. I mean, this is -- I used to live in Atlanta. So I know from experience. But it is amazing to see these lines and the people out there already.

Kaitlan, the president tonight said that the country is going to keep on winning and winning and winning. What was it, last time you're going to be sick of winning or something? More than 214,000 Americans are dead from coronavirus in part because of his mishandling of the pandemic. That is not winning, winning. That is not winning at all.

COLLINS: It's interesting to see how the president is trying to take this tack that he had before he got coronavirus which is addressing it briefly then putting it to the side, you know, moving on from it because they know it's not a winning issue for the president. They know voters reject his handling of it. And so, they don't want it to be front and center.

But, Don, something you heard from the president tonight that I've been to a lot of these rallies lately that we rarely, rarely hear from him is sympathy expressed for people who have either gotten coronavirus or they've known someone who has died from it. And you heard him address that tonight.

So, I do wonder what the conversations are behind the scenes that had led to that decision for the president to address it even if briefly during his remarks tonight because it is not something you've seen him say many times before. Instead he has relied on the vice president to deliver that message and, you know, some advisers have seen that as a mistake.

They were hoping he'd come out of COVID-19, you know, with this message of understanding and be able to potentially employ that with voters but instead he comes out and says he is immune which of course the science is still out on how that works.

He talks about how powerful he feels without mentioning the fact that he had been on steroids recently and also, he talks about making the drug that he got available to everyone, this treatment, when it's not widely available to anyone. It's not even available really to anybody.

And so, you know, putting it in context it makes people think if they got it they'll be able to hold a rally a week later when that's really not necessarily the case for people who cannot get the same level of treatment that he did.

[22:25:05]

LEMON: All right. It's good to see both of you. Thank you so much. Kaitlan, the ever ready Kaitlan Collins and John Avlon. Good to see you both.

AVLON: Take care. LEMON: Thirty-one states seeing an uptick in coronavirus, nine states

reporting record numbers of hospitalizations. Here we go again. What this next wave of infections means for your state and for the election. That's next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: And we're back. So, the news about COVID-19 not good tonight, really isn't, cases rising throughout the country nearly 50,000 new cases on average per day. That's according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

So more than half the country seeing a surge in cases with nine states reporting record high COVID-19 hospitalizations on Sunday. That's according to COVID -- the COVID tracking project.

[22:30:03]

The problem is it's even more serious when you consider where we're headed. We're heading to the cold weather months, flu season, and rising death toll.

Let's discuss now. Dr. Peter Hotez, the vaccine scientist and the dean of tropical medicine at the Baylor College of Medicine. By the way, doctor, thank you for joining us. You'll be happy. I got my flu shot. I think you know, so.

PETER HOTEZ, INFECTIOUS EXPERT, BAYLOR UNIVERSITY: Well done.

LEMON: Yes.

HOTEZ: Well done.

LEMON: Yes. I had to look the other way. They gave me a lollipop afterwards but I got it.

So, listen, you know, as a public health expert can you please tell me what you think seeing someone who has recently been infected with the virus, with the coronavirus, and then required the top medical care this country has to offer that he is back on the trail, large crowd of people tonight and it's as if nothing has happened. Nothing has changed.

HOTEZ: Well, Don, you know, what's puzzling and what's awful is the tone deafness. I mean, we are, I think entering a very dark chapter in this epidemic and maybe one of the darkest times in modern times in the United States public health history.

Look, we went from 20,000 -- we hit a low of 20,000 cases at the end of May. We went up to 65,000 new cases a day in the middle of summer. Then it came back down to around 30 or 35,000 a day and now we're climbing up over 50,000.

So, we are already starting at a very high level and we know that everyone has been predicting a massive surge as we go into the fall and winter so we could be looking potentially one of the worst phases yet of our epidemic. And some estimates from the Institute for Health Metrics in Seattle are saying we could double the number of deaths sometime after the inauguration going from 200,000 to 400,000 deaths.

So that's the background entering this very scary time in American life. And then the, you know, and then the president joking about it, going into crowds, not -- still not with that culture of masks. That disconnect is just astonishing. And I'm very upset by it.

LEMON: So, here's the thing as, you know, things start to change, right, and you know, we've been able to go and have, like I know I have and other people, to eat outdoors. Right? You don't have to be inside of a restaurant.

Places people are making -- governments are making exceptions for people to be able to eat outside. And then you can have a certain number of people at your home, blah, blah, blah. So, as we move into this new time, right, this colder period, how should people at home be evaluating their risks? And should they think about modifying their behavior as we move into the fall into the colder weather?

HOTEZ: I think we have to plan, you know, and this is what I'm telling my family members, my adult kids and other family members that get ready for a really tough time this winter. Think about who you want to do your social distancing with as you head into later in November, December, and January, and get ready to hunker down. That is point one.

Point two, take care of your mental health. The one thing I do say is look, this terrible period will not go on forever. I do think we're going to be in a much better place by the middle of next year because vaccines will be available by this time next year. We'll have a significant percentage of the population vaccinated.

So, it's not all bleak, not a time for despair but be realistic and recognize that this winter, this November, December, January, February, could be the worst time in our pandemic and plan accordingly and be smart about it and take steps to protect your mental health.

Make certain that you know a -- a mental health counselor, how to reach them if you need them, know how to call on family members. It's OK to feel scared and to be upset and to get depressed. That's a normal reaction to this. But get ready for it. Put all the belts and suspenders in place for a very rough time.

LEMON: Doctor, thank you very much. I appreciate it.

HOTEZ: Thank you.

LEMON: The president demanding a huge stimulus package after he shut down negotiations. My next guest says Trump is killing the economy out of spite. Paul Krugman is going to explain what he means.

[22:35:00]

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) LEMON: So, the president trying to grasp at whatever he can to boost his dimming re-election chances including trying to boast about a struggling economy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRUMP: We are hitting record stock market numbers, record 401K, record stocks. Record job numbers. Don't blow it. Don't blow it.

(APPLAUSE)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: What? Really? OK. I don't know where he is but only 14 percent of households have money directly in the stock market. So those increases aren't helping everyone, really just a small percentage of Americans.

He is also taking to Twitter and urging Republicans to focus on a stimulus package that he pulled the plug on just days ago. Despite his rosy outlook the country has only regained about half of the 22 million jobs lost during the pandemic and at the rate -- at that rate which we are adding them back is significantly slowing. OK?

Let's discuss now. New York Times columnist Paul Krugman is here, always a pleasure to have him on. Thank you, sir, for joining. I appreciate it.

PAUL KRUGMAN, COLUMNIST, THE NEW YORK TIMES: Good to be on.

LEMON: So, the president still doesn't understand the stock market is not the economy, Paul. What's the real economic picture right now?

KRUGMAN: The real economic picture is that we fell into a deep hole. We climbed fairly fast about half way back up. But not much, you know, it's slowing down. We don't -- we don't know exactly how much it slowed down.

[22:40:01]

But clearly, the economy has slowed a lot. It is still enormous unemployment. And you know, it is not even a question really, we talk about stimulus. But the main thing is what are people going to live on? People are not getting wages. The extra unemployment benefits that they had for a while have been cut off. States and local governments are running out of money.

So, we desperately need a relief package but, you know, Trump is on again off again wild mood swings but nothing is actually happening.

LEMON: Yes. The president again pushing for states to reopen, Paul, and then saying that the cure can't be worse than the problem. He said that before. But won't letting the virus run rampant hurt the economy more than it'll help it?

KRUGMAN: Yes. In fact, it won't even work at all. I mean, you see, you know, New York has done some partial reopening of indoor dining and already some places that reopened have closed again because there are no customers.

LEMON: Yes.

KRUGMAN: Are you -- I'm not ready to go and sit in an indoor space right now. It's a -- so, until you get the virus under control you really can't have a full reopening. So, no, it's just -- it's just foolish but anyway I love this. It's all just posturing now because the election is so close. So, it's just really about trying to seem as if he is doing something.

LEMON: You know, he is all over the place on getting economic relief to Americans who by the way as we know desperately need it right now.

KRUGMAN: Yes.

LEMON: As, you know, as he was going through the whole, you know, his whole coronavirus bout and the steroids and the drugs one minute he is canceling negotiations. The next he is trying to back track. You say he may be killing the economy out of spite, Paul. That is, that's big. Why do you say that?

KRUGMAN: Well if you look at when he suddenly said OK, we're -- I'm canceling all negotiations. There was no sense in there. It didn't -- you know, there certainly is no point. If you care at all about the country you should say look, let's at least continue talking. Let's try to get something together.

His, the whole attitude was like, I'm mad and I'm going to take my ball and go home. He just pulled out. And of course, then he reversed course yet again. But this was -- none of this sounds like somebody who is actually seriously trying to grapple with the actual problem. All of it sounds like someone who is having, you know, feeling peeved, is feeling optimistic, making grandiose claims. It doesn't sound at all like someone who is serious at all about policy.

LEMON: You're also warning about what could happen if Trump loses. How much damage could he do before the inauguration if he loses?

KRUGMAN: Well, the main thing is that simply by not doing anything he would do an enormous amount of damage. If we have, we are in a situation now where extra unemployment benefits ended on July 31st. Families are scraping by barely on some savings that they may have accumulated. States and local governments are running out of money.

If we do nothing until January 20th, when we hope or expect a new president will be inaugurated then we will have, people will run to the end of their reserves. We'll see an enormous amount of damage. So, simply by not doing anything he can inflict enormous damage on the economy.

LEMON: Paul, thank you. I appreciate you joining. Come back soon.

KRUGMAN: Take care.

LEMON: Stop and watch this, everyone. It's real life. It's from Trump's rally tonight. So --

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JORDAN KLEPPER, COMEDIAN: You don't get sick from it?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't care if I do because I know I'm not going to die from it. That's being --

(CROSSTALK)

KLEPPER: How do you know -- how do you that with all due respect?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You know what? If I do, I do. I'm not afraid.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: And there is a whole lot more. The Daily Show's Jordan Klepper goes to these rallies and he speaks with voters. And the things he hears you will never believe. But lucky for us he is here to tell us all about them. There he is and he's next.

[2:45:00]

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: So, the president holding another packed rally tonight as the pandemic rages on with more rallies set for the rest of the week. Dr. Anthony Fauci warning that hosting political rallies is asking for trouble.

The Daily Show's Jordan Klepper went to a Trump campaign rally in Pennsylvania just days before Trump's coronavirus diagnosis and the same day as the super spreader event at the White House to nominate Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. So here is what rally-goers said about wearing masks to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KLEPPER: What do you think about the whole mask situation right now? Are you worried about COVID?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For me, like me personally, I'm not worried but my dad has underlying health conditions.

KLEPPER: OK.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So, if he gets it he is going to be in trouble.

KLEPPER: Why come here and take that risk if your dad has health issues.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Just to see Trump.

KLEPPER: You are pro-life.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Of course. KLEPPER: It's important for Americans to do whatever they can to

protect a human life.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

KLEPPER: Why aren't you wearing a mask?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I mean, again, it's a personal choice, I think. If everybody was wearing them and everybody said put a mask on, I would respect everybody's wishes and put them on. We're not sheep.

KLEPPER: You're not a sheep.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're lions.

KLEPPER: You're not sheep. But if everybody here was wearing a mask.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If everybody is wearing, again, we're not sheeple.

KLEPPER: You're not sheeple.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're not.

KLEPPER: So, you're going to look at what everybody is doing and you're going to follow along.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: The president has convinced his supporters that not wearing masks is OK. I'll report it to any chance I get wearing masks helps prevent the spread of COVID-19.

[22:50:02]

And that's the only misinformation resonating with the president's supporters. Take voting by mail.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think mail-in ballots won't be fair because it leads to fraud and stuff.

KLEPPER: You don't trust mail-in ballots.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Not at all.

KLEPPER: The president uses mail-in ballots.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, but they're going to use mail-in ballots for this upcoming election, right?

KLEPPER: Right. But the president himself uses mail-in ballots.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He does? Where? KLEPPER: That's how he votes. He mails it in.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That's different.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. That's different.

KLEPPER: How is it different?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't know. I honestly didn't know that. I don't even know what you've talking about.

KLEPPER: But you do know he's --

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: Another fact worth repeating there is no evidence of widespread voter fraud. None. So here with more is Jordan Klepper, contributor to The Daily Show with Trevor Noah.

Jordan, it's good to see you. It's I watch -- I've been watching you do this since the last election 2016. It's really just unbelievable some of the things that people say. You spoke to a Trump supporter and you asked if it was -- if he was better off than he was four years ago. Listen to this and then we'll talk about it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KLEPPER: Are you in a better place than four years ago?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Absolutely. Absolutely.

KLEPPER: Is America in a better place than it was four years ago?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I believe absolutely.

KLEPPER: We have higher unemployment. We have 200,000 people dead due to COVID and we have riots in the streets.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. Let me tell you this much. Yes, I am doing much better. I am literally making four times as much as I was making when Obama was president.

KLEPPER: What do you do?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I work for a debt relief company.

KLEPPER: Yes.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: I can't -- you don't even have to try but the supporter said that he is a debt collector and he explains why he is better off. I mean, tell me, what is going on here?

KLEPPER: Well, I think somebody is coming for my job. It's really difficult. You know we're in an economic downturn but when a comedian goes out and somebody is writing comedic copy on the fly that's better than anything you could come up with you start to get scared.

LEMON: Do you ever -- I mean, do you stand there and is it just, it has to be unbelievable to you. I have not been out this, you know, this political season to a campaign rally and I thought like after all of the madness that has happened over the past four years that there may be a different sort of mood or sentiment at Trump rallies. Has much changed since 2016 or 2015?

KLEPPER: I mean, I feel like the one I just went to last week you feel that there is still an energy there. And that's undeniable. There was four years ago. But if you're going to the Spin Doctors for the first time, they were exciting their first time out. If you're still going to Spin Doctors concerts four years later you might be excited about the hits but you've heard that song over and over again.

And so, at a Trump rally people are excited to be there. There is something in the air. COVID, I believe but they've done this before. They've heard this story over and over again. And so, I do think there is a tamper down in energy levels. But there is also a double down in the things they believe because it's not about politics anymore. It's not -- it's not an audition for a job. It's an ideology rally and it's all about identity.

LEMON: Our very own Gary Tuchman talked to Trump supporters at the president's rally tonight in Florida. A lot of people said that they didn't want to wear a mask. What you saw was not an isolated incident there, right?

KLEPPER: No. I mean, what I was surprised about we asked people why they weren't wearing masks and most people had masks on them. I'm used to going out and oftentimes much like conservatives will carry the Constitution in the pocket so they can shame a liberal, I feel like that has been replaced by a mask to shame a liberal.

Most people weren't wearing them but they were aware that they should have them. I think that actually struck me. I was sort of expecting the narrative of a month and a half ago where this was a hoax or nothing to be aware of. It was as bad as the flu.

But it seems that people understood we should have masks which is why it's so infuriating because if Donald Trump set that example and did everything against what he's done up until this point there could be a real effect. People have the masks. They are in their pockets. They are waiting for somebody to tell them put it on you don't look stupid. See if you can save 80,000 lives over the next six months but that call hasn't gone out. But I already make --

(CROSSTALK)

LEMON: They are waiting for Trump to tell them to put it on. Yes.

KLEPPER: So, I guess he has other important topics to talk about.

LEMON: Yes, he wants to kiss everyone in the audience. And yet, if the president says put on a mask, they'll put it on. They're waiting for him to tell them to put on a mask. Is that what you're telling me? KLEPPER: I -- they will jump in line. I'm amazed at how quickly the

narrative shifts.

LEMON: Yes.

KLEPPER: As with the president, you know, he sets the tone for those rallies. And people are, they want to go to the big parade in town and I can empathize with that.

[22:54:59]

The president tells them what to wear to the parade and I think they would put on a mask, they should put on a mask, he won't tell them to do it, and until he does, you are going to see what we see every day.

LEMON: Just quickly before I have to go here. Did any of the people you were speaking to because you, you know, you have a way of catching them in their own words and thoughts. Do they ever get it in the moment or are they just confused by the logic of what you are pointing out to them? Are they confused by -- do people ever go, wow. I get it. Is there ever an epiphany?

KLEPPER: Well, I think there's a -- people aren't used to follow-up questions. I had an epiphany when I was talking to folks about the impeachment hearings months, months ago, I think an eternity ago. And I remember asking people, this was the time when Trump didn't want Bolton to speak and he was withholding witnesses from testifying.

And I talked to people and they were, Trump, he didn't do anything. He didn't do anything. And one woman I remember speaking to and she said, you know, I believe Donald Trump. He is open about everything. He is not hiding anything at all.

And I asked her, well he is stopping witnesses from testifying. And she took a beat and she registered it, and she responded, I don't care.

LEMON: Yes.

KLEPPER: And to me, that was it in a nutshell. Like contradiction. Contradiction is only revealing of the lie you tell yourself. And I think that's what I see at these rallies.

LEMON: Jordan, it's great work. Seriously. Say hello to Trevor. People still call me Trevor on the street and ask for my autograph. I don't even explain to them anymore that I'm not Trevor Noah. He is much better looking and younger.

KLEPPER: Just take the love. Right?

LEMON: I have to go. But thank you. Come back. Keep up the great work and be safe, OK, out there.

KLEPPER: Thank you, Don.

LEMON: Thank you, Jordan. We'll be right back. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)