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U.S. Senate Approves Compromise, House Vote to Come; Senate Report Details Trumps Attempts to Overturn Election; White House Ready To Go When Vaccines Authorized for Kids; Biden Urges Vaccine Mandated for Businesses; Saudi-Backed Consortium Buys Newcastle United. Aired 4-4:30a ET

Aired October 08, 2021 - 04:00   ET



ISA SOARES, CNN ANCHOR: ISA SOARES, CNN ANCHOR: Hello and a very warm welcome to our viewers joining us in the United States and right around the world. I'm Isa Soares in London and just ahead right here on CNN NEWSROOM.


SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): Republicans played a dangerous and risky partisan game and I am glad that their brinksmanship did not work.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The civility is gone. OK. And I'm going to part of it. I'm going to try to bring it back and I'll speak out when I see someone do something out of line.


SOARES: From deadlock to deal, Senators leaders pull the U.S. from the brink of default for now.

The January 6 committee subpoenas two more people behind the storming of the Capitol, this as Trump allies face their subpoena deadline.

Plus, the COVID vaccine could be available for millions of children within weeks. We have all the details for you.

ANNOUNCER: Live from London, this is CNN NEWSROOM with Isa Soares.

SOARES: Welcome, everyone. It is Friday, October the 8th, and we begin with a crisis averted for now.

Two Senators -- U.S. Senators I should say -- have voted to temporarily extend the nation's debt ceiling. That basically means they avoid what everyone agrees would have been a disastrous default. That means the U.S. government will have more money. In fact, it will have another $480 billion in about two more months to pay its bills. The House of Representatives still has to agree. But this is only a temporary fix because come December 3rd, they will have to face a vote on this again. Now, the stopgap measure brings U.S. debt limit to a whopping $28.88

trillion. In that's the amount the government can borrow to pay the bills it already owes and has nothing to do with future spending. So, what does this all mean? CNN's Ryan Nobles has more on the Senate compromise as well as the major challenges still ahead.


RYAN NOBLES, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It wasn't easy, but the United States Senate has passed a bill that is going to lift the debt ceiling temporarily through the first week of December and averting an economic catastrophe that could have happened if the debt ceiling wasn't lifted as soon as next week. Now Republicans and Democrats hashing out a deal that would basically just kick this problem down the road a couple of weeks but avoiding that problem in the middle of October.

But it still didn't come easy. Republican leader Mitch McConnell working out a deal with Chuck Schumer that they hoped would mean they could bring that bill to the floor without any Republican opposition, and then just Democrats could vote yes, Republicans vote no. But the Senate is a fickle place, and Republican Senator Ted Cruz and a few others said no, that they were still going to try and block the legislation. And when you put that filibuster in place, that requires 60 votes total in order for there to even be an up and down vote.

Now, McConnell did try and convince his colleagues to get those ten votes necessary to get it to the floor. He was successful, but there were a few anxious moments as the vote went down. Ultimately there were the ten votes to get there. For the most part it was Republican leaders, moderates, and a group of Republican Senators who are not seeking reelection that were not afraid to cast that vote to allow the bill to come tote floor. After that, the simple up or down vote came through. And it passed along partisan lines.

Now, the House Speaker Nancy Pelosi sent a letter to her colleagues earlier today informing them that they should be prepared to come back early from their -- the recess they are currently on for the House to pass this same piece of legislation. The President, Joe Biden, has said he'll sign it into law. So, the crisis for now will be averted. But again, to make clear, this has not solved any problems.

The same impasse that we were dealing with here on Capitol Hill before we got to this point still exists. It's just now going to exist the first week in December before we get into the Christmas holiday. But it's also important to point out it comes at the same time there will be another issue with the government spending. A government shutdown could loom once again. And there is still that continued debate over the president's domestic spending, a plan and agenda Democrats still haggling out all those issues. So, crisis averted, at least at one stage, but a lot more work to go.

Ryan Nobles, CNN on Capitol Hill.

(END VIDEOTAPE) SOARES: Well, U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said she is relieved about the temporary fix for the debt limit, but she told CNN's Erin Burnett that Congress needs to come up with a long-term solution. Take a listen.



JANET YELLEN, U.S. TREASURY SECRETARY: I think it is damaging to confidence of consumers, of investors, of course, everyone including me breathed a sigh of relief that we were able to reach an agreement that gets us to December 3rd. We were staring at October 18th as a time when we would, you know, run out of extraordinary measures and cash would be running down quickly. So, it's important that we have met that deadline.


SOARES: Janet Yellen there. Well, let's get a check of how the U.S. futures markets are responding. Yesterday as you saw markets look pretty good, but pretty flat so far as we look at the futures. Little change, but markets celebrated. Obviously that decision by the Senate to temporarily raise the debt ceiling of course, they're only kicking the can down the road. But so far, we're seeing mostly green arrows.

But their eyes will be fixed on the release of the September U.S. jobs report and will likely shed some light on whether August disappointing numbers were just a blip or the start of an unwelcome trend. Enhanced unemployment benefits expired at the beginning of September, and the port is also expected to indicate what impact that had on the labor markets. So, stock markets were fixed on that this Friday.

Now, a deadline has now passed before close aides of former President Trump to comply with subpoenas by the House Select Committee investigating the January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol. And the fresh round of subpoenas have gone out to organizers of the "Stop The Steal" rally that preceded the Capitol attack. The deadline for them is next Wednesday. Meanwhile, Senate Democrats have issued scathing report about then President Trump's efforts to overturn his election loss. CNN's Jessica Schneider in Washington has all the details for you.


JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Former President Trump relentlessly sought to overturn the election and today the attempted coup is key detailed in this nearly 400-page Senate report. Trump directly asked Justice Department officials nine times to undermine the result.

And when the former president considered replacing then acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen with loyalist Jeffrey Clark, a DOJ lawyer who supported the election fraud lies, White House counsel Pat Cipollone threatened to quit.

SEN. DICK DURBIN (D-IL): It was Cipollone, who spoke up and said that he thought that this scenario and what they were trying to achieve was a murder suicide pact and the president should not do it.

SCHNEIDER (voice-over): The committee's report is the most comprehensive account so far of Trump's wide-ranging plot. New revelations include accounts from inside the Oval Office on January 3, when Trump blamed former U.S. Attorney B.J. Pak for failing to find mass election fraud in Georgia and wanted him fired. That prompted Acting Deputy Attorney General Richard Donoghue to call Pak that night to tell him to preemptively resign, which he did.

Republicans have already issued a rebuttal to the report dismissing the idea that Trump was attempting a coup, noting that ultimately, no action was taken by the DOJ.

SEN. CHUCK GRASSLEY (R-IA): In fact, it appeared made another decision, you would've had a problem.

SCHNEIDER (voice-over): But the Senate report just as to the mountain of revelations showcasing how Trump and his loyalists try to keep the former president in power. And the plot didn't just target the DOJ. This memo obtained by CNN in mid-September shows how conservative lawyer John Eastman outlined a six-point scheme to persuade then Vice President Mike Pence to throw out the election results on January 6.

RUDY GIULIANI, FORMER PERSONAL LAWYER TO FORMER PRESIDENT TRUMP: This has been a massive attack on the integrity of the voting system in the greatest democracy on earth.

SCHNEIDER (voice-over): Meanwhile, new court documents revealed Rudy Giuliani and other Trump allies testified under oath that they did little to verify these false election fraud claims before blasting them out to the public. In a sworn deposition, Giuliani acknowledged he did not have all the facts before falsely accusing a Dominion voting systems executive of changing votes for Joe Biden defending it this way, saying: We didn't pronounce him guilty. We laid out the facts that we had.

And all of this as the former President continues to insist the election was rigged, Trump released a statement criticizing the work of January 6 select committee saying lawmakers should conclude: ... that the real insurrection happened on November 3rd, the presidential election not on January 6.

SCHNEIDER: And the select committee just issued two new rounds of subpoenas to more people involved in planning the "Stop the Steal" rally on January 6th. That was a precursor to the Capitol attack. One of the subpoenas is to the "Stop the Steal" group leader Ali Alexander. He previously claimed that he worked closely with Republican Congressmen planning the rally and that he communicated with the White House. All of those major points of interest for the select committee.

Jessica Schneider, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE) SOARES: Now, the U.S. and Mexico are getting ready for talks on border security today. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is leading the U.S. delegation, which also includes the Attorney General and Secretary of Homeland security.


The two countries are hoping to find new ways to cooperate on the migrant crisis, and the fight against human trafficking, drug smuggling as well as organized crime. A senior U.S. official said it is important for both sides to address the causes of those security challenges. Of course, we'll stay on top that of story for you.

Now the collapse of an enormous scaffold at a high rise in Hong Kong a few hours ago has had tragic consequence. A female construction worker died after she and seven colleagues were rescued. The woman was unconscious but she was found and rushed to the hospital where she passed away. The scaffold collapsed into a tangled mess really as Hong Kong was under cyclone warning. The city was being buffeted by strong gusty winds. And as you can see there pretty heavy rains.

Still to come, young children could be lining up to get a COVID vaccination soon. Just ahead, we'll find out which shot the FDA will be considering for ages 5 to 11 in the coming weeks. That story right here on CNN NEWSROOM.



SOARES: Now the World Health Organization is setting an ambitious goal to vaccinate 70 percent of the global population by the middle of next year. As you can see here, little more than a third of the world's population is fully vaccinated, 35.2 percent. That is according to our world in data. That is due in part to vaccine inequity. The U.N. Secretary-General had some harsh words over the lack of access poorer nations have to these vital doses. Take a listen.


ANTONIO GUTERRES, U.N. SECRETARY-GENERAL: Vaccine inequality is the best ally of the COVID-19 pandemic. It's allowing variants to develop and run wild, condemning the world to millions more deaths and prolonging an economic slowdown that would cost trillions of dollars.


SOARES: Antonio Guterres there.


OMAR JIMENEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's the beginning of a new phase in the fight against COVID-19. As Pfizer officially requests emergency use authorization from the FDA for vaccinating 5 to 11-year- olds.

The White House COVID response coordinator says they're ready.

JEFF ZIENTS, WHITE HOUSE COVID-19 RESPONSE COORDINATOR: We're working with states to set up convenient locations for parents and kids to get vaccinated including pediatricians' offices and community sites so we'll be ready pending the CDC and FDA action.

JIMENEZ (voice-over): It could mean shots in young kids' arms as soon as the end of October. But even now the U.S. is getting better. Still averaging over 100,000 new COVID-19 cases a day -- according to John Hopkins -- but that is more than 11 percent down from last week's average and a 26 percent decrease from last month. Deaths and hospitalizations also down. All driven by the vaccine, yet many are still skeptical.

DR. PETER HOTEZ, PROFESSOR & DEAN OF TROPICAL MEDICINE, BAYLOR COLLEGE OF MEDICINE: Remember, we've lost now 100,000 Americans over the summer from COVID-19 overwhelmingly here in the south despite the availability of safe and effective vaccines. We know what this is. This is defiance. I don't even call it misinformation or disinformation anymore. I call this anti-science aggression.

JIMENEZ (voice-over): And on masks currently more than 99 percent of the U.S. population lives in a county where people should be wearing one indoors according to CDC guidance. Including Cook County in the Chicagoland area where President Joe Biden is visiting today.

DR. GREGORY HUHN, COVID-19 VACCINATION COORDINATOR, COOK COUNTY HEALTH: Since September we've actually seen a decline in Delta. And that's encouraging. As we scale up our vaccination, hopefully get to the 80 percent range. We're going to see a decrease in the intensity of COVID-19. The disease spectrum will become more mild. People won't die.

JIMENEZ (voice-over): Despite improvements countrywide the pandemic has still created sobering realities. COVID-19 has taken the parents or grandparent care givers of 140,000 U.S. children. Minorities at a higher rate according to the CDC and other researchers.

Available data through June showed that racial and ethnic minorities accounted for 65 percent of those who lost a primary caregiver while white children accounted for 35. Even though minorities make up just 39 percent of the U.S. population.

JIMENEZ: And as serious as those in equities are, overall things do seem to be headed in the right direction. Plus, the possibility of an antiviral pill against COVID-19 along with the prospect of having vaccinated 5 to 11-year-olds have some including former FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb optimistic they can be bookends to the pandemic at the very least a light at the end of what has felt like an endless tunnel.

Omar Jimenez, CNN, Chicago.


SOARES: Well, if the COVID vaccine is authorized for young children, the U.S. Surgeon General says more states will likely mandate vaccinations for students in the coming school year. Take a listen.


DR. VIVEK MURTHY, U.S. SURGEON GENERAL: I think part of the reason you're going to see states likely move in that direction post authorization is because we all want our kids to go back to school, to be able to stay in school, and to be safe. And many people out there think that, you know, COVID is not a big deal for kids, we shouldn't really worry about it. But I will tell you, we have lost hundreds of children to COVID. Thousands have been hospitalized, and we could prevent a lot of this with a safe and effective vaccine.


SOARES: Well, meanwhile, Florida state board of education has voted to sanction eight of its school districts for not allowing parents to opt out of mask mandates. In addition to docking the pay of school board members, the board commission recommends that the state withhold further money to offset any grants given by the Biden administration. Superintendents from those districts argued they were in compliance and cited increasing COVID case counts for the mask mandates.

U.S. President Joe Biden is defending his vaccine requirements of federal workers, large employers, as well as health care staff.


And he took his message really on the road on Thursday in hopes more businesses will follow his lead. Jeff Zeleny has more for you.


JEFF ZELENY, CNN CHIEF U.S. NATIONAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: President Biden traveling to Illinois on Thursday to make the case for vaccine mandates for corporations. Visiting Elk Grove Village, Illinois, speaking with the chairman of United Airlines, one of the private companies here in the U.S. that has been leading the way requiring its employees to be vaccinated. Now some 99 percent of all employees are vaccinated.

The president urging other companies to follow in their lead. Other airlines already have, other large companies as well. The President delivering an economic argument for why this is the way out of the pandemic.

JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I'm calling on more employers to act. My message is require your employees to get vaccinated. The vaccinations are going to beat this pandemic finally. Without them, we face endless months of chaos in our hospitals, damage to our economy, and anxiety in our schools.

ZELENY: The president using that economic argument acknowledging that it is tough medicine -- in his words -- for some employers and employees. But he said that is the only way to lead the United States out of this pandemic heading into the fall and winter colder months. Now the president also bluntly acknowledged he was not in favor of

these mandates only months ago. He said it was not his first instinct. But because of the major reluctance across this country to vaccinate Americans, this is actually been more effective than anything else has. But the president says a corner has been turned on that Delta variant but still not out of the woods yet. So, he urged Americans and companies to require vaccinations.

Jeff Zeleny, CNN, Elk Grove Village, Illinois.


SOARES: Now, American Airlines is one company rolling out a new COVID mandate for all of its employees, and there are serious consequence for those who don't comply. CNN's Pete Muntean explains.


PETE MUNTEAN, CNN AVIATION CORRESPONDENT: American Airlines has set the deadline for its employees in the United States to get vaccinated as the day before Thanksgiving. It's the timing that is so interesting here because the Wednesday before Thanksgiving is typically the kickoff to the busy holiday travel season. American will not say if that is intentional, but the airline is actually going one step further here than other vaccine mandates. It is requiring that these employees get vaccinated fully by November 24th, meaning somebody who is getting the Moderna shot would have to get their first dose on October 27th.

Clock is ticking for tens of thousands of employees here who just got a sternly worded memo from American Airlines that says: To be clear, if you fail to comply with the requirement, the result will be termination from the company.

We know that these mandates work on the vaccine hesitant. Take United Airlines mandate, for example. Just went into place last week. 67,000 employees in the United States had to submit to this, and of those only about 232 resisted, and United tells us that number went down as the firing process for those employees began.

Pete Muntean, CNN, Washington.


SOARES: Well, there's more trouble this morning for the National Hockey League's Evander Kane. Front office sports in the ESPN cite unnamed sources who say the league is investigating whether Kane submitted a fraudulent COVID vaccination card. His estranged wife has also reportedly accused him of domestic abuse. San Jose Sharks forward was cleared last month of gambling on NHL games including some that he had played in. CNN has reached out to Kane's attorney for comment.

Now, the English Premier League has given its blessing to the controversial take over Newcastle United football club. It has been sold to a consortium that includes a Saudi sovereign wealth fund known as PIF. The deal is reportedly worth about $400 million, but it's being highly controversial because of the kingdom's human rights record. The fund is chaired by Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman. Who according to U.S. intelligence agencies approved the operation in which Jamal Khashoggi was killed in Istanbul, if you remember, in 2018.

But the league says the deal passed its owners and directors test and the league received assured the kingdom won't control the team.

Patrick Snell joins me now from CNN World Sport. And Patrick, look, good morning to you. I was looking at the papers this morning. Pretty much all over the newspapers, yes, with the condemnation, but also from the fans. Clearly ecstatic and clearly prepared to ignore the criticism.

PATRICK SNELL, CNN WORLD SPORT: Isa, Yes. I think you said it absolutely spot on. Good morning to you as well. This is a story that's dominating on the global football scene. It really is something we are all staking stock of still, resonating, as they say, all around the world. That controversial Saudi Arabian backed take over, let's put it into context. Newcastle United, Isa, one of biggest historic names in English football, but a team currently languishing second from bottom in the Premier League, having a really bad time on the field of play.


Look, this has been a long-running saga. It looked like it was going to be going through over a year ago now. Now it got halted, and during which time we have indeed seen Saudi Arabia's human rights record coming under intense scrutiny during that time.

I want to hone in on that Premier League statement though. Because it's crux to all of this.

The Premier League has now received legally binding assurances that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will not control Newcastle United Football Club.

So how is this all going to play out, then, especially financially? Well, we got the three-party consortium including the Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund. The total estimated asset value in the range of something like $450 billion, Isa. The consortium also including venture capital and private equity company, PCP capital partners and the RP sports and media. We'll get to reaction absolutely from Amnesty International. Because it was swift, it was strong, and it urges the English top flight to change the league's owners and directors test which the deal ultimately passed. Take a listen.


FELIX JAKENS, AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL SPOKESPERSON: Ever since this deal was fast talked over eight months ago, Amnesty has said that it would represent a really high-water mark with the Saudi authorities in their to clean up their appalling human rights record by buying into top flight English football. It seemed the Premier League was going in one direction on this decision. And now they've gone in another. And it sets a dangerous precedent the English football is open for business when it comes to sports washing.


SNELL: Well Isa, you mentioned the fans, the Newcastle fans. This was a scene first as they gathered outside the club's iconic Saint James Park ground. You know what, we were giving some thought to this earlier. This deal does make Newcastle probably the richest club in world football right now -- potentially at least. Fans can now likely to expect to see their club flexing its muscles financially. It will be interesting to see how they approach it all. This a success star club as well. I'll get into that a bit more in just a few moments.

But the big picture financially, these figures right there spell it out, don't they? The consortium estimated assets around the $450 billion mark -- as we've pointed out earlier. But compare that with Man City's Abu Dhabi owners and Paris Saint-Germain's Qatari owners, who are actually -- well there axed out of the top five. They're not even on that list. I think that speaks volume.

But Isa, look, Newcastle United, the fans -- the fans are, indeed, the lifeblood of the sport. We saw that earlier this year with the doomed European Super League. Very powerful collective voice, but Newcastle club craving silverware. 1955 the last time they won anything major of substance domestically. That was English FA cup. You have to go back to 1927 the last time they won the top flight title. Back to you.

SOARES: And you know, Patrick, looking at those numbers, that is putting into perspective, that is a lot of money. Let's see if it makes any difference, like you said, when it comes to those results. Patrick Snell there for us. Thanks very much, Patrick. Good to see you.

Now, the manhunt continues for Gabby Petito's missing fiancee. And police are now getting some help from his father. We will get the latest from Florida on the search. That's next.