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Presidential Candidates Hit Swing States Today; Trump Pushes COVID Misinformation as He Returns to Campaign Trail; Biden Speaks on Economy in Ohio; Senate Confirmation Hearing for Supreme Court Nominee Amy Coney Barrett. Aired 1:30-2p ET

Aired October 12, 2020 - 13:30   ET




BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN HOST: With just 22 days to go until Election Day, the candidates are hitting the campaign trail. It's clear from their schedules that swing states are top of mind, of course.

Take a look at where President Trump is headed, Florida this evening, Pennsylvania on Tuesday, Iowa on Wednesday.

And former Vice President Joe Biden's week is looking pretty similar. He's visiting Ohio today, Florida tomorrow, his Wednesday plans TBD at this point.

All this campaigning as the Senate holds confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee, Amy Coney Barrett.

Gloria Borger is back with us now to talk politics.

You know the president obviously has been infected with coronavirus. And yet, here he is heading to Florida and Pennsylvania and Iowa this week. All of these are states that are seeing a rise in new COVID cases.

Of course, many people wondered, Gloria, is getting the virus would cause him to change his outlook and his behaviors. It appears that is completely the opposite of what has happened.

GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: No. I think we've spent the last almost four years saying: Will Donald Trump pivot and become presidential? And the answer to that has always been no. And I think the answer to this is exactly the same.

And I think the reason that he's going to these states, Brianna, is very clear. These are states he won last time. Iowa he won by more on nine points. Now it's a tie.

These are states he feels he needs to go to, despite the increase in COVID cases, because he needs to win these states again. [13:35:03]

And I guarantee you, he's not going to be talking about the increase in COVID in these states. He's going to be saying the same things he's always been saying, which is that we've turned the corner.

And I think a lot of people in a state like Iowa or a state like Florida, for example, will be scratching their heads about that.

KEILAR: I want to ask you, the president has tweeted or retweeted more than 50 times today before 10:30 a.m. If you have a tweet alert on him, which most political journalists, do you're getting blown up, right?


KEILAR: Just blown up.

And many of those tweets were aimed at getting Americans to vote for him. What does this tell you about his confidence three weeks out from the election?

BORGER: Look, I think this is a president that reads the polls even though he says they're fake. He gets internal analysis where it shows that he is trailing. And I think he's just kind of flailing and throwing everything up against the wall that he can.

When he's not tweeting, he's watching the hearings. And he's complaining about Republicans, as we were talking about a moment ago, not talking enough about how he's going to protect pre-existing conditions on health care.

Because he understands that health care is an issue the Democrats are going to raise. And it is an issue that he does not do well on when compared to Joe Biden.

So he understands exactly what's going on and that's one of the reasons he's been kind of like a caged animal stuck in the White House and wants to get out on the campaign trail, even though a lot of people believe that is not what he should be doing, including doctors.

KEILAR: Yes. All right, Gloria Borger, great to see you again. Thank you.

BORGER: Good to see you.

KEILAR: It's been two months since many schools started to reopen, but it's hard to know how they're doing when no one is tracking it nationally.

Plus, why thousands of people are deliberately exposing themselves to the coronavirus.

And why is this Republican Senator appearing at the Supreme Court hearing in person and speaking without a mask just 11 days after his coronavirus diagnosis?

This is CNN's special live coverage.



JOE BIDEN, DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: -- the largest General Motors and largest Chrysler plant outside of Michigan and Ohio. And I saw -- I saw what happened when we got hit very hard. We've lost both those plants.

Let me start off by saying, Mr. Mayor, thanks for the passport into your city.

And, Marcy, you've been a friend a long time. Thank you for your introduction.

You know, there's no more fierce defender -- there's no more fierce defender with the people she grew up with than Marcy.


BIDEN: She has never, ever, forgotten where she's come from. She's tough. She's a straight shooter. She's influential in Congress. She's honest. And she sees you. You're always in her view.

And, Tony, Mr. President, I know you're new. And he said piece of cake so I don't have to worry if I get elected the first hundred days.

But all kidding aside, Tony, thank you for hosting us. And thank you, Local 14. And can you -- thanks for that introduction.

All you did for Barack and me when we were running, when we got elected, jumping in and being part of helping us govern.

You remind me of something my dad said. He said, Joey, a job is about a lot more than a paycheck. It's about your dignity. It's about your place in the community. It's about respect.

It's about being able to say to your kid, look him in the eye and say everything is going to be OK and mean it. That's what a job is about. A decent-paying job like the UAW provides.

This is a lesson I grew up with, surrounded by hard-working families in Scranton and then in Claymont, Delaware, where we had to move when dad lost work and there was no work in Scranton.

Just like here in Toledo. But the times are hard. Unemployment is way up due to the pandemic and the terrible way in which it's been handled. The economic outlook remains uncertain.

Across Ohio and the country, folks are worried about making the next mortgage payment or the rent payment, whether or not they can purchase prescription drugs or be able to put food on the table, literally. Worried about whether their kids' school is open and able to stay

open. And if they're not open, how they can go to work if they have a job and still take care of their kids.

They see the people at the very top doing better than they ever have, while they're left to wonder, who's looking out for me.

That's Donald Trump's presidency.

And 215,000 dead because of COVID. Experts say we're likely to lose another 200,000 people in the next few months unless we take some serious action, and he doesn't know what he's doing.

All because this president's only worried about one thing, the stock market. He refuses to follow the science.


It's estimated if we just wore these masks nationally, we'd save over 100,000 lives between now and the end of the year.

This president knew back in January. He was briefed in detail by the Intelligence Community how extremely dangerous this COVID virus was, how communicable the disease was.

He went in a taped interview with Bob Woodward, a leading journalist -- it's been played -- telling Woodward he knew how dangerous the disease was but did nothing.

Ask yourself, why didn't he tell us? Why didn't he warn us? He said nothing.

He told Woodward that he didn't want to panic the American people. That's why he said nothing.

We don't panic. America doesn't panic. But Trump panicked.

His reckless personal conduct since his diagnosis has been unconscionable. The longer Donald Trump is president, the more reckless he seems to get.

Dr. Fauci, the most respected doc on this issue in the world -- in the country, he told the president -- you know, the president's announcement of his pick for the Supreme Court in the Rose Garden, he referred to that as a super spreader.

All those people that caught the disease, how is he responding? Well, guess what, he's now running an ad you probably saw, a national ad quoting Dr. Fauci out of context way back in March.

Referring to public health officials, Dr. Fauci said, "I can't imagine that anybody could be doing more," end of quote.

In the recent ad that's going out nationally, Trump ad quotes Dr. Fauci as saying that about him, the president.

Trump and his campaign deliberately lied, making it sound like Fauci was talking about Trump.

Fauci went on the public air when the ad came out saying three days ago, I did not give permission for that quote. He wasn't referring to the president. And even after that, Fauci said he didn't say that.

The president and the campaign, even after Fauci laid this out, the campaign said, we're still going to use it because he did say it, even though it wasn't about him.

The point I'm trying to make is it was a knowing lie, like we're being told about everything about this COVID consequences.

As a consequence to his months of overwhelming lying, misleading and irresponsible action on the part of Donald Trump, how many empty chairs were around your breakfast table this morning?

Someone you love, someone you cared about, someone you knew, family member or a neighbor, missing, missing. And why? Because of negligence.

Look, I view this campaign as I've said before and I'll say it again between Scranton and Park Avenue, between Toledo and Park Avenue.

All Trump can see is from Park Avenue is Wall Street. That's why his only metric for American prosperity that he values is the Dow Jones and the index.

Like a lot of you, I spent a lot of my time with guys like Trump looking down on me, the Irish Catholic kid in the neighborhood.

Guys who thought they were better than me because they had a lot of money. Guys who inherited everything they ever got and still managed to squander it.

I have to admit -- I shouldn't have done it, but I've been on record so I'll repeat it. I still have a little bit of chip on my shoulder about guys like him.

I read some stories after I got the nomination that, quote, "If Biden gets elected, he'll be the first non-Ivy League School graduate to get elected" I think in 80 or 90 years.

Guys, have a seat, man.

You know what? Like some state school guy, I went to the University of Delaware. I was proud of it. Hard to get there, hard to get through in terms of money.

But folks, since when can someone who went to a state university not be qualified to be president?

Folks, I know what it takes to be president. I sat next to a man for eight years watching and participating.

My mom taught me that what you're probably taught by your parents, too. She'd say, Joey, nobody is better than you but everybody is your equal.

I don't measure people based on the size of their bank account. I don't respect people based on whether they own a mansion. I don't judge them whether -- based on whether they belong to a country club.


You and I measure people by the strength of their character, their honesty, their courage, their courage.

My mom used to say the greatest gift of all, the greatest virtue is courage. You're redeemed by your courage. That's what she would say and redeemed by your loyalty. Honesty, loyalty, things that are bigger than yourself.

Those are with the neighborhoods we were raised in. It's all about family, decency, honor, opportunity. These are the values I learned growing up in Scranton, and my guess is you learned them where you grew up.

The people I grew up in Scranton didn't have money in stocks. In our house growing up, every penny my dad made went to paying bills, keeping the lights on, food on the table.

Every penny our friends in Scranton made went to paying the bills and taking care of their families as well. We looked out for our neighbors.

That's why I have a different measure by which I judge the health of America's economy.

I see hard-working women and men who are just trying to earn an honest living to take care of their families. Just want an even shot. They're not asking for anything. Just asking for a fair thought.

You know, given a shot, the American people would never, ever, ever let their country down. Never.

The other expression my dad had, he said, when you see the abuse of power, there's only one way to respond and that is with power.

The only power we have to take on Corporate America is union power. That's the only power.


BIDEN: I just think back to 2008 when Barack and I were elected, and we had the worst recession short of a depression in history. The president put me in charge of the Recovery Act, $800 billion that was needed to save our economy from going into a depression.

We did it with less than 0.2 percent of waste or fraud. We were able to see to it that Ohio and other states received substantial assistance to address their economic pain, to recover and to build, to make sure to kept teachers, firefighters and cops, public nurses on the job. People are being laid off now because you don't have the local money

to do it. So they didn't have to be fired because of lack of money.

That was when the federal government stepped up and started the longest sustained economic recovery in American history that this guy inherited and then squandered again.

But you know what Mitch McConnell said recently about helping the states and the cities. He said, quote, "Let them go bankrupt."

I heard that before. You heard it, too. Republicans said the same thing about the automobile industry.

Like I said, I come from an automobile state and an automobile man. The auto industry supported one in eight Ohioans. It was on the brink. It was more than 10 years ago, but you remember like it was yesterday. It was on the brink.

Barack and I bet on you, the American worker. We argued the American worker was the finest worker in the world. Management screwed it up. You didn't.


BIDEN: You didn't make the mistake.


BIDEN: By the way, it all got paid back. But guess who made the greatest sacrifices? Autoworkers. You made the sacrifices to get it back.


So over -- over the many objections --

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): Do you solemnly swear the testimony you're about to give is the truth, the whole truth, nothing but the truth, so help you God?


GRAHAM: Welcome to the committee, to your family. All doing a great job over there.

The floor is yours, Judge.



BARRETT: More than the style of his writing though, it was the content of Justice Scalia's reasoning that shaped me.