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Senate Parliamentarian Ruling on Democratic Spending Bill as Senate Democrats Attempt to Pass Legislation through Reconciliation; U.S. Jobs Report and Democratic Spending Bill Positive News for Biden Administration; Texas Jury Orders Alex Jones to Pay More than $45 Million to Parents of Child Killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting. Aired 10-11a ET

Aired August 06, 2022 - 10:00   ET




PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning. It's Saturday, August 6th. I'm Phil Mattingly.

AMARA WALKER, CNN ANCHOR: Hi there, Phil. I'm Amara Walker. You are in the CNN Newsroom.

Up first, step by step, Democrats are moving closer to a Senate vote today on their sweeping economic and climate bill.

MATTINGLY: That bill has already cleared one key political hurdle, winning support of Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema. Sinema's support is essential as Democrats push for passage of the bill under a procedural process which allows that passage with just a simple majority.

WALKER: So what is in the bill. It includes $369 billion to combat climate change, which is the largest investment in U.S. history. It gives Medicare the power to negotiate some drug prices. It caps Medicare out-of-pocket expenses at $2,000, and it extends Affordable Care Act subsidies for three years.

MATTINGLY: CNN Congressional correspondent Jessica Dean is following the developments on Capitol Hill. White House reporter Kevin Liptak looks at what this all means for the president and his agenda. And Jess, I want to start with you because we have got news breaking just in the last five or ten minutes, I think it is a good harbinger for your next two or three days up there in the Capitol. Where do things stand right now with the key elements of what has to happen for this to move forward?

JESSICA DEAN, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Phil, Democrats getting some good news from the Senate parliamentarian. So just to give you the big picture, they are using, as you both noted, this complex budget process that requires the support of all 50 Democrats, doesn't need any Republican support. But in order to do that the parliamentarian has to rule that it passes and musters up to all of these rules surrounding it. And we just found out really in the last 10 minutes that the parliamentarian has ruled that a key component of this package, allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices, has passed muster, so it will be allowed in this bill, and that is big news for Senate Democrats.

The parliamentarian also ruling that the other provision that would have imposed a cap on private companies if the price of drugs rose faster than the price of inflation, she said that that could not be included but it can be imposed on Medicare. But again, the bulk of what the Democrats wanted with this particular provision stays in.

She is going to continue to rule on other key components that they want to include, and that takes us to the timing for the rest of the day. We are expecting the Senate to gavel in around noon, but where it goes from there, it's kind of anybody's guess. We know that they are waiting on the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office to rule on some of -- or to put scores out on exactly how much some of this will cost and how it will affect the deficit. And that could come at any time. So it is kind of a rolling time frame here.

The big step will be the motion to proceed, and that's just the, it's going to need a simple majority, and that's what's going to kick off this process. And the question is when that will happen. We know the Democrats want to wait on the parliamentarian to make sure that she has ruled on everything so they don't have to make changes once they start this process. So again, a lot of this, Phil and Amara, is in flux in terms of timing. What we do know is that we expect this to ultimately pass the Senate and move on over to the House. It's just at this point, guys, a matter of timing, and we will see how that plays out over the day.

WALKER: A matter of lots of procedures. Jessica Dean, thank you for that.

So big picture here, right, Kevin, the Democrats are getting closer to fulfilling an essential element of President Biden's economic agenda. He's also wrapping up a week where he had several wins that they are touting. So what is the latest from the White House? And how important is this -- will the passage, potential passage of this bill mean for the Biden agenda?

KEVIN LIPTAK, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Well, it will be a big deal for President Biden. And when you look at what's included in that plan, the billions for climate change, raising the corporate tax rate, being able to negotiate drug prices, so much of that had really been left for dead over the past year as it repeatedly came up short. That it's happening now is really kind of a vindication of sorts for President Biden's approach here, and it's kind of a patently Biden- esque way of going about things, allowing space for this deal to come together, for these negotiators to come up with an agreement.

It's not a way that a lot of Democrats have wanted him to work over the last year. They've really been calling him out for not acting more urgently. But the president has been able to sort of tune that out and allow this to come together in a way that really will advance an agenda that he wants to see advanced.


It is falling short of what he initially proposed when he came into office. It's less than half of the size. In a way, he was sort of a victim of his own expectation setting there when people came into office and said he would be imposing sort of a new New Deal, FDR-style reforms, a lot of safety net things that he wanted included in there have been left out.

But what is included is still very significant. And it sort of represents the largest investments in a lot of these areas really ever. For climate, this is the largest investment in combatting climate change that has ever been passed through the Senate and House, if it passes through the Senate and House. And sort of the task for the president after that will be selling this bill, and that is something that he himself is the first to say has not always really been his strong suit.

You can tell by the name of the bill, the Inflation Reduction Act, where he is headed in that. He wants to show Americans that he is focused on bringing down prices and that's something that they will be highlighting. That wasn't always the focus of his agenda, but it is certainly now as Americans face high prices. And so as this bill makes it through, it does cap what has been a very successful week for the president. He took out the leader of Al Qaeda. He got a massive jobs report yesterday. So certainly the president heading into the weekend certainly feeling like he has a lot of momentum, Amara.

MATTINGLY: Yes, there's no question about that. We will see how this plays out in the next couple of days. Kevin, you take it easy out there in the heat. Jess, you take it easy because you have a long few days ahead, my friend. Thanks, guys, very much.

WALKER: Thank you.

MATTINGLY: Joining us to discuss all of the latest in Washington, CNN political analyst and my good pal, Margaret Talev. She's the managing editor at "Axios." And Margaret, look, you talk parliamentarian and CBO and scores and ruling. Let's push that aside, as much as I know you and I both love it. When it comes to this process over the course of the next couple of days, do you see anything right now that could get in the way of Senate Democrats actually passing this, getting it to the House, and eventually getting it to President Biden's desk?

MARGARET TALEV, MANAGING EDITOR, "AXIOS": Good morning, Phil. I actually don't unless it is something parliamentary in nature, unless some aspect that allows the tax revenue to come together in the way it has been promised were to be impacted. That would certainly impact both Joe Manchin's thinking and Kyrsten Sinema's. But other than that, there don't seem to be any roadblocks. There will be this vote-a-rama. It will, we think, mostly be a lot of noise over the weekend. Most of the House Democrats that could be sticking points over local revenues and taxation are falling in line. There may be one or two who don't. Really, this is, right now, unless something happens with the parliamentarian's judgment, on a path to go through.

And its implications, really, I think of them in two buckets. Politically, the climate change aspects may appeal politically to Democrats who have been wanting this and it will help them be motivated. But I think for a lot of kind of swing voters or centrist Americans, the climate aspects are kind of obscure. It is hard to understand how will this impact me. It could be some years away. The impact will come down the road because it will make it cheaper to use clean energy, and that will shift the way America works much more toward clean energy.

But the prescription drug aspect I think is something that all Americans, regardless of your political stripes, can understand. If you rely on prescription drugs, especially if you are older, they can be extraordinarily expensive. This won't make everyone's drugs cheaper immediately, but it will be the foot in the door that opens up that process, and it could have profound implications in years to come.

MATTINGLY: Yes. Look, when you talk to Democrats and Republicans, they make very clear the prescription drug issue just pops in their internal polling, it always has. And now Democrats are doing something they've wanted to do, or on their way potentially to do something they wanted to do for decades.

One of the questions I have had, Margaret. You are an astute observer of White Houses and presidents. You have covered multiple presidents over the years. The president entered this week with his polls at their lowest level, struggling when it comes to inflation, obviously no shortage of foreign policy issues that are on his plate as well. This was a blockbuster week for him. This bill really capping, while a scaled-back version of his primary cornerstone piece of the agenda, it's still a big issue, a big win if he gets it. Can he change the trajectory that has been pretty static for the course of several months?

TALEV: Yes, that's the $64,000 question, or the $10 trillion question, or whatever you want to call it. If you are the White House, if you are President Biden, you will take all these wins, and you will take that victory for the pro -- for the abortion rights side in Kansas, and you will run with it as far and as fast as you can.

But a lot of public opinion is baked in at this point. The real -- traditionally, the real push in terms of election years, even midterm years, is around Labor Day.


This is before Labor Day, but some of the trouble Americans are facing -- like inflation is not going to go away just because of this stuff. Gas prices are better. I'm in Delaware now. When I cross the state line, the gas prices here were in the $3-plus rather than $4-plus. But the Democrats just don't know. Biden's approval ratings are still stuck in the 30s, and the real question is probably not how will this impact House races. It is how it will impact control of the Senate.

For that, all of this stuff matters, the economic stuff, the motivation around energy. But that abortion vote in Kansas on Tuesday and what it says about how Democrats will campaign around the country, how they will seek to turn out their own base and how they will seek to motivate swing voters, Republican women in suburbs, that may end up being a bigger driver than any of these individual pieces.

MATTINGLY: Have you gotten a sense when you've talked to your Democratic sources that they believe that this can be extrapolated out, this isn't just an isolated issue in Kansas. It's not just about the messaging or the makeup of the state. This is something that can carry over, because that's been something Republican officials I've been talking to for weeks have been dismissing, and yet they saw the numbers, particularly on the turnout side, and said, OK, maybe we were underplaying this a little bit. What is your sense of things when you talk to folks?

TALEV: In close races, 100 percent, absolutely. And what Democrats believe is this could have implications in several key states, in Michigan, in Pennsylvania, in Arizona, in Georgia perhaps, and in Wisconsin.

It's twofold. One, Democrats are concerned that candidates or advocacy groups not take the ball and run with it too far. This isn't about voters saying they embrace totally liberalized abortion rights laws. It is about voters saying they support some restrictions, but not state's abilities to completely ban the procedure or to take away women's rights to obtain medical procedures that could help them. So it's a degree of nuance to some extent, is what Democrats think.

The other thing that Democrats are watching is we're looking now at a lot of ads. Obviously, there's going to be a proliferation of ads that have been cut since Tuesday on this issue. But another thing to watch is the ads beforehand because there was a very targeted and deliberative ad campaign in Kansas, and the tone, the rhetoric, the words that were used, the approaches and the arguments that were used in those ads are going to be a real roadmap for the language that you see in all of these states and nationally to make the case that this is about choice or that it is not about government mandates. You may hear those words more than you hear words like "abortion."

MATTINGLY: Yes, it will be fascinating to watch. A lot of time, 94, 95 days, I think. Margaret, I regret to inform you, as my former "Bloomberg" colleague, we ran out of time to talk about PCE and the VIX. Maybe next time we will get into the economic data. Margaret Talev, thanks so much.

TALEV: Thanks, Phil.

WALKER: And speaking of abortion rights, Indiana has become the first state to pass an abortion ban since Roe versus Wade was overturned. The bill would provide exceptions for when the life of the mother is at risk and for fatal fetal anomalies. It would also allow exceptions for some abortions if the pregnancy was a result of rape or incest. Indiana currently allows abortions up to 20 weeks after fertilization.

Protesters filled the halls of Indiana's state capital as lawmakers voted on the measure. The new laws into effect September 15th.

A Texas jury has ordered rightwing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones to pay more than $45 million to the parents of a child killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in that massacre in 2012. MATTINGLY: Now, the punitive damages are to penalize Jones for

spreading the lie that the attack never happened. The victims and their families were actors was a part of that lie. CNN correspondent Polo Sandoval joins us. And Polo, just so I'm clear here, that $45 million is on top of the $4 million Jones was ordered to pay in compensatory damages as well, right?

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's correct, Phil. It's important to remind our viewers that this was a total that was decided by a jury. You do have the compensatory damages that are basically meant to compensate a plaintiff for injuries sustained. But then that significant amount that was decided on yesterday by that Texas jury, the punitive stage that was meant to punish a defendant. In this case, Alex Jones, who you see here taking the oath as part of the testimony that he offered at the end of the civil trial here. This is an amount that's awarded to the parents of Jesse Lewis, one of the victims of the shooting at -- in Connecticut.


And I think what is important here is what we heard from the parents of Jesse Lewis here, some emotional testimony including from his mother, Scarlett Lewis, who said the years of lies coming from Alex Jones not only they felt stained the legacy of their son, but also tormented them for years. This is how Scarlett Lewis responded, or at least reacted to the decision that was handed down by a jury yesterday in Texas.


SCARLETT LEWIS, SON KILLED DURING SANDY HOOK ELEMENTARY SCHOOL SHOOTING: We can choose love and that we're all responsible for one another. Care and concern is so important, and we saw what happens when there is a dearth of that. And so I hope that we all just go home tonight and everybody that's reading these articles and hearing this message, and you choose love with your kids because you can, realize that you have a choice, and your choice is love.


SANDOVAL: So the big question now, what are the chances that Jesse Lewis's parents will actually see all of the compensation that was awarded by this jury yesterday. The answer is not good, at least not in Texas here, because of that cap that's been set by Texas law of $750,000 per plaintiff. Elie Honig, though, one of our legal analysts making an important point as far as what might come next for the plaintiffs. They could potential argue that that violates their constitutional right to a fair trial, and that would eventually end up in the Texas Supreme Court, which may not perhaps look favorably on this particular case. But it is an argument that has worked before, guys, in other states, guys. So it will be interesting to see what comes next, and also for the outstanding trials we are yet to see. Another one in Texas and one in Connecticut with those judgments against Alex Jones.

WALKER: Really his legal troubles are not yet over. And I have to say watching that, one of the most powerful moments was to watch this mother, Scarlett Lewis, address the court and address Alex Jones, and say --

SANDOVAL: Face him.

WALKER: Yes, I am real, my child is real, and how tragic that you would have to say that and try to convince another human of that. Appreciate your reporting, Polo Sandoval. Thank you so much.

SANDOVAL: Thanks, guys.

MATTINGLY: The Justice Department's criminal probe into January 6th focuses on Former President Trump's West Wing, CNN has learned that his legal team is now in direct talks with DOJ officials. CNN justice correspondent Jessica Schneider takes a closer look at the former president's attempts to cloak conversations behind executive pressure.


JESSICA SCHNEIDER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Pressure continues to build on the Justice Department to charge Trump at the same time prosecutors have ramped up their investigation in recent days with subpoenas issued to several former top White House officials, all while CNN has exclusively learned Trump's legal team is in talks with DOJ officials about Trump wanting to shield the conversations he had as president from investigators.

REP. LIZ CHENEY, (R-WY): I have been very clear. I think he is guilty of the most serious dereliction of duty of any president in our nation's history.

SCHNEIDER: In an exclusive interview with CNN's Kasie Hunt, Liz Cheney indicating DOJ must indict if they uncover sufficient evidence.

CHENEY: We're going to continue to follow the facts. I think the Department of Justice will do that. But they have to make decisions about prosecution. Understanding what it means if the facts and the evidence are there and they decide not to prosecute, how do we then call ourselves a nation of laws?

SCHNEIDER: The attorney general has refused to divulge what prosecutors are planning.

MERRICK GARLAND, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: No person is above the law in this country. Nothing stops us --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Even a former president?

GARLAND: I don't know how to -- maybe I'll say that again. No person is above the law in this country. I can't say it any more clearly than that.

SCHNEIDER: And sources tell CNN Trump's legal defense team has warned him indictments are possible. While the former president has grilled his attorneys about whether they actually believe he will face formal charges. Trump's lawyers have even advised him to cut off ties with his former chief of staff Mark Meadows, who has defied a subpoena from the January 6th committee, though Trump and Meadows have still spoken a number of times according to sources. Sources also tell CNN the Justice Department is priming for a fight over executive privilege which, if they win, could open the door to revealing testimony from Trump's top aides.

DANIEL GOLDMAN, FORMER HOUSE IMPEACHMENT LEAD COUNSEL: Can the DOJ pierce that privilege by saying and perhaps going to court to get a ruling that Donald Trump's -- the conversations are misconduct and therefore not shielded by executive privilege?

SCHNEIDER: Trump's spokesperson firing back that Trump will fiercely fight any moves to strike down his executive privilege claims. "How can any future president ever have private conversations with his attorneys, counsellors, and other senior advisers if any such adviser is forced, either during or after the presidency, in front of an unselect committee or other entity, and be forced to reveal those privileged, confidential discussions?"


WALKER: And that was our Jessica Schneider reporting.

Still ahead, a war of words, tensions heating up between the U.S. and China after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's trip to Taiwan, and now the secretary of state warning China's decision to cut off cooperation with the U.S. could have long-term consequences.


MATTINGLY: Plus, the U.S. declares monkeypox a public health emergency. Now the FDA is proposing using smaller doses to stretch vaccine availability. We'll have the latest on the outbreak.


MATTINGLY: China is pushing back after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made a stop in Taiwan on her trip to Asia this week. The Chinese issued new sanctions against Pelosi, and they're all but halting cooperation with the U.S. on a variety of key issues, including addressing climate change.

WALKER: Yes, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is calling those actions irresponsible. CNN's Blake Essig joining us now with more. Tensions clearly escalating, where do things stand right now, Blake?

BLAKE ESSIG, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Phil, Amara, U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's tour of Asia wrapped up yesterday, as you mentioned.


But the fallout from her surprise visit continues to be felt here in Taiwan. China's live-fire military exercises essentially encircling this democratic island continued for a third day according to Taiwan's defense ministry. Multiple Chinese aircraft and warships were spotted operating in the Taiwan Strait today, with some again crossing the median line on Friday. During the second day of exercises, Taiwan's ministry of national defense says 13 People's Liberation Army warships conducted activities around the Taiwan Strait and China flew 49 warplanes into Taiwan's air defense identification zone amid heightened tensions.

Now, China's foreign ministry is blaming the United States of starting this crisis and as a result of what they call a provocative visit to Taiwan by the House Speaker. Beijing has announced sanctions against Pelosi for visiting the island. Beijing has also announced that they are suspending cooperation with the United States on a number of issues, as you mentioned, including climate change, anti-drug cooperation, and have cancelled future talks between Chinese and U.S. defense officials.

In response to China's drills, the White House summoned China's ambassador to condemn the ongoing military activities. Of course, the Chinese ambassador rejected that condemnation. U.S. secretary of state Antony Blinken also weighed in. Take a listen.


ANTONY BLINKEN, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: So let me be clear. The United States doesn't believe that it's in the interests of Taiwan, the region, or our own national security to escalate this situation. We'll keep our channels of communication with China open with the intent of avoiding escalation due to misunderstanding or miscommunication.


ESSIG: Blinken also said that China has chosen to overreact and has used Pelosi's visit as a pretext to increase proactive military activity. And while the international reaction, including from some experts that CNN has talked to, have said that this feels very much like a dress rehearsal for a potential war here in Taiwan, the mood is surprisingly calm. People are going about their daily lives. The shopping district here has been busy. There were long lines tonight outside restaurants. It just doesn't feel like people here are that concerned about a potential Chinese attack. And perhaps that's because people have been living under that constant threat from China for the past seven decades.

Now, in Beijing, it's different. The underlying message surrounding these drills is that time is on China's side with a fast, modernizing military, and that reunification with Taiwan is not a matter of if, but when. Phil, Amara?

WALKER: Yes, concerning rhetoric there, Blake Essig. Appreciate your reporting from Taiwan. Thanks for that.

Turning now to monkeypox, with it officially being deemed a public health emergency, the issue now comes down to a lack of vaccines for the most at risk. We are going to hear from a doctor on a possible solution next.



WALKER: So the White House has declared the monkeypox outbreak a public health emergency. So far, there are more than 7,100 reported cases across the country -- I should say 7,500 now -- in every single state except Montana and Wyoming.

Joining me now is Dr. Peter Chin-Hong. He's an infectious disease specialist at the University of California, San Francisco. Great to see you this morning. Thank you so much for joining us. So as you know, there's been a lot of criticism aimed at the Biden administration for its handling of the outbreak. What are your thoughts? Because I know San Francisco and some cities went ahead and made their own emergency declarations. Do you think the Biden administration has been too slow to react to this outbreak?

DR. PETER CHIN-HONG, UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, SAN FRANCISCO, SCHOOL OF MEDICINE: Yes, Amara. I think I would probably give the administration response a B minus grade or a B maybe if I'm being generous, because in an epidemic or an outbreak, time is everything, and the longer you wait, the more expensive it is going to be. I think we needed more money, we needed smoother medications. We needed more coordination and metadata. And of course, everyone is focused on vaccines, but in each of these areas we needed better coordination.

WALKER: How concerned are you about this rise in infection rates, and also what are you seeing in San Francisco?

CHIN-HONG: I think in San Francisco, it is one of the epicenters in the country, and certainly in California. We have the same number of cases as L.A., and we have 10 times fewer the population. So there's an air both in the current community and the general community of anxiety, desperation. I'm worried about stigma. The other day a patient came to me asking for meds because she had hugged a gay man. So I think that is the worry that I'm concerned about.

WALKER: I think adding to the fear is the shortage, right, of vaccines. And of course, federal officials are moving to get more into the states. But you have federal health officials now proposing the idea, or looking into the idea of splitting one vial of the vaccine that's used as one dose into five doses. That would need an EUA from the FDA. But what do studies show? Would the vaccine still be effective then if it is just one-fifth of a dose?


CHIN-HONG: Some people think it might even be more effective, paradoxically, and that's because you are giving the vaccine in a different location. It is not like you are just dividing the vaccine into smaller doses, but you are giving it intradermally, which is more on the surface of the skin, as opposed to what has been done now, which is subcutaneously, which is deeper. And they have actually had proof of concept studies in other outbreaks like cholera when they didn't have enough vaccines. So the only question I have, and I'm really excited about it, is that

it will take a little time so we won't expect any study results until end of November, early December. And like I said, time is everything.

WALKER: And before we go, I mean just give us a quick rundown of what we need to know about monkeypox. Because, again, going to your patient who was afraid about -- was concerned after hugging a gay man, what are some myths and things we need to know about monkeypox?

CHIN-HONG: Well, I think the biggest myth is how you get it. You can't get it from going to the gym very easily. You can't get it from a yoga studio or going on public transit. I really think about the font size. So skin-to-skin contact over many hours, huge font, 50 font. Going to the gym, going to outside lands, festivals, eight-point font. So it's very, very difficult to get this virus. It's an animal virus. It is not trying to infect humans. It is trying to find a rat or a rodent or a monkey.

WALKER: Got it. Dr. Pete Chin-Hong, appreciate you. And hopefully you can curl up by that cozy-looking fireplace and read a good book. Thanks for your time.

CHIN-HONG: Thanks so much, Amara.

MATTINGLY: In a separate programming note, join Anderson Cooper Sunday night for a new investigation into what really happened in Uvalde, Texas. Watch this special report tomorrow at 8:00 p.m. right here on CNN.

We'll be right back.



MATTINGLY: Right now, a new flood advisory is in effect for parts of eastern Kentucky as more heavy rain moves in.

WALKER: And that means some of the areas that got hit the hardest during those deadly floods more than a week ago could get hit again. Let's get right to CNN meteorologist Allison Chinchar. Allison?

ALLISON CHINCHAR, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Yes, that's right. And it is a very slow-moving system, too, so you have a lot of time for this rain to really fall in several of these areas.

Here is a look at the live radar. All these boxes you see here, those are the various flood warnings and flash flood warnings because of how much rain has already fallen. But it's still continuously pushing off to the east. And again, in some of these spots, one storm moves out and another one moves right back in. So you have a lot of these areas being inundated by water at this moment.

This is what has already fallen. You can see the wide swath here from Morehead down to Somerset. About two to four inches has already come down. The areas farther east including Hazard and Jackson, you are looking at about up to one inch so far. But remember, this system is moving to the east, so you're going to start to see more of those areas pick up the higher amounts in the coming hours.

We have a flood watch in effect not only for eastern Kentucky but also some of the surrounding states too, because that's where the bulk of that rain is headed, in that easterly direction. This is a look at the forward forecast. Once the first cluster moves through, we will get a bit of a break, but then more showers and thunderstorms are expected this afternoon and also continuing into tomorrow.

We also have another area of concern, and that's in portions of the Midwest, specifically Minnesota and Wisconsin. This system here is also expected to have training thunderstorms and a pretty widespread amount of an excessive amount of rain. What we mean by that is overall, look at all of the orange and red areas here. Now you're talking six, seven, even as much as eight inches of rain over the next 24 to 48 hours. That's why you have two separate areas here where we have the potential for flooding. That first area across portions of the Midwest and the secondary area, unfortunately, over the portions of Kentucky that were already hit by the devastating flooding, and that will continue to slide east, again, as we see these current storms, guys, continuing to ever-so-slowly make their way east.

WALKER: This has to be very concerning for those in Kentucky, many of whom lost so many. Allison, thank you.

On Monday, President Biden and the first lady will travel to Kentucky to see the damage for themselves.

MATTINGLY: And at this point 37 people are dead, but that number could rise as officials continue searching for the missing. CNN's Dianne Gallagher filed this report from eastern Kentucky where entire towns have nothing left. People are still without power, and everything is buried in a foot of mud.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're not, we're not victims here. We are survivors.

DIANNE GALLAGHER, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: As the people of eastern Kentucky dig out of the mud, they're praying for a miracle in the form of donations, good will, dry weather. Volunteers lined up at the apple shop in Whitesburg to sort and attempt to salvage hundreds of soaked but priceless pieces of Appalachian history.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Everything is wet.

GALLAGHER: Just across the river, another piece of after Appalachian culture caked in mud after the floods ripped through this downtown distillery.

COLIN FULTZ, KENTUCKY MIST MOONSHINE: First you are just heart-broke, and then you try to fix it back, get it back as fast as we can.

GALLAGHER: Running water, electricity, communications hard to come by, community touchstones destroyed. Schools, pharmacies, fire departments and grocery stores, nothing is spared in these tiny towns.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You think of it as a store, but it is actually a gathering place for everyone.

GALLAGHER: While Hindman volunteer firefighters were doing boat rescues, their department flooded, a fire truck swept away. But it is the human toll the chief can't shake. The majority of the flooding deaths happened in Knott County, including the four siblings that died.

CHIEF PRESTON HAYS, HINDMAN, KENTUCKY, FIRE DEPARTMENT: Just knowing those people is heartbreaking. This is our community, it's our town, it's our home.

GALLAGHER: For those who survived the flood, surviving its aftermath brings new challenges, which for many become more difficult by the day.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There's nothing left. Everything's destroyed.


GALLAGHER: The rural nature of the region, coupled with the water crushing roads and bridges, made rescues and resources difficult to come by, with the National Guard coming in by air.


GALLAGHER: And neighbors by ATV.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is a bridge.

GALLAGHER: Survivors helping survivors in places like Wolf Cove.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Neighbor helping neighbor, that means a lot.

GALLAGHER: And Fleming-Neon where nearly every home and business was affected.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I mean it was -- it was like a war zone.

GALLAGHER: Leaving the people there stranded, forced to lift themselves out of the mud, unable to seek outside help for days.

MAYOR SUSAN POLIS, FLEMING-NEON, KENTUCKY: You can't help but cry. You can't help but cry. But it's going to be all right. We're going to be OK. We will be back.

GALLAGHER: Survivors, like the Letcher fire chief who hung on to the top of this tanker for 15 hours while the floodwaters rose around him, say to really recover they will need more than repairs.

CHIEF WALLACE BOLLING, JR., LETCHER, KENTUCKY, FIRE DEPARTMENT: PTSD is real. And I kind of wondered about things, how to go forward. But I've got to fix myself first.

GALLAGHER: Most who escaped with their lives had little else left behind when the water receded.

GARY CLICK, SURVIVED FLOODING: You see the mud right in here, see the window?


CLICK: That's how deep this water was.

GALLAGHER: Gary Click says most of his possessions are ruined. Like many in this region, he didn't have flood insurance because he doesn't live in a floodplain.

CLICK: I have never seen water like that. I mean just like a dam burst or like a tsunami.

GALLAGHER: Gary lived by Troublesome Creek for most of his life, but he's not sure if his community, ever independent and resilient, can ever be the same.

CLICK: This is literally the end of this little community.

GALLAGHER: Admitting he'll never be able to shake the fear of another flood.

CLICK: I believe we're seeing the effects of climate change right here. Just given time, if we don't turn it around, just given time it is going to get worse. People are going to see life as we know it change dramatically. I have seen it. I have lived here 40 years.

GALLAGHER: Dianne Gallagher, CNN, Hazard, Kentucky.


MATTINGLY: Unimaginable devastation. For more information about how you can help victims of the Kentucky flooding, go to

We'll be right back.



WALKER: Sources tell CNN actress Anne Heche is in intensive care after a car crash yesterday in the Los Angeles area. Witnesses say she was driving at a high rate of speed when her car went off the road and then slammed into a house. The crash caused the car and the house to catch fire. The Emmy Award-winning actress reportedly suffered severe burn injuries, with one source saying she faces a long recovery. No one in the house was injured.

MATTINGLY: The L.A. Dodgers honored the beloved and absolutely legendary broadcaster Vin Scully at last night's game against the San Diego Padres.

WALKER: He passed away earlier this week, and CNN's Paul Vercammen spoke to colleagues and fans about his legacy. (BEGIN VIDEO TAPE)

WALKER VERCAMMEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: On a beautiful, breezy night in Los Angeles, the adoration for the late Vin Scully flowed at Dodger Stadium. Fans could be seen taking photos in front of the press box named after Vin Scully. Others wore Vin Scully shirts, including one many who had young man Vin Scully on his back.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have been grateful to all who have been sharing their respects here at 1000 Vin Scully Avenue.

VERCAMMEN: And in the pregame ceremony, so much emotion.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Vin was most comfortable in the booth.

VERCAMMEN: They played an 11-minute video tribute to Vin Scully. It was narrated by one of the Dodger's announcers, Charley Steiner.

CHARLEY STEINER, DODGERS ANNOUNCER: Vin called 25 World Series, 12 All-Star games.

Vin was above and beyond the greatest baseball broadcaster who ever lived. He may have been the best pure sports announcer who ever lived. He was a friend. And that's one of the things I'm having difficulty coming to terms with here in the last few days. I knew he was going to pass away, it came as no surprise. But, still, you get the call, and it's a gut punch. And so this is -- tonight for me, I'm calling a game, but it's also a sentimental journey.

Vin Scully, Fordham class of 1949.

JOSEPH BURRUEL, FAN: It was like you get goosebumps because you get to see and you get to hear him again.

VINCE SCULLY, BROADCASTER: Swung on, a high-fly ball to deep leftfield. Would you believe a homerun? And the Dodgers have clenched the division and will celebrate on schedule.


BURRUEL: Every time you hear those five words, "It's time for Dodger baseball," it's just you get chills because you know that's Vin.

ANNIE KELLOGG, FAN: He was a great man, and what a career. What a career, and so humble.

MARLA MOSSBERG, FAN: I fell asleep to him. His voice was so soothing to me that I just -- I'm going to miss him.

MICHELLE BUTTERFIELD, FAN: My grandma was a Dodger, bled blue. Couldn't go anywhere unless we listened to the Dodger game online. So he has just been a part of my life.

MIGUEL CAMPOS, FAN: Just iconic. The sound of L.A. Anywhere you would be, a Dodger game, you would hear Vin Scully. So it's just like haunting. SCULLY: It's time for Dodger baseball!


ELIZABETH MARQUEZ, FAN: I was in tears actually. It's the culmination of an entire life that was dedicated to baseball and to the city of L.A.

VERCAMMEN: For these Dodger fans, if he ran for mayor of Los Angeles, Vin Scully would have won. To them in a way, Vin Scully was to sportscasting what Van Gogh was to art or Louie Armstrong to jazz. He was simply the best. They don't want to forget him, and they were glad to say goodbye on this night.

Reporting from Dodger Stadium, I'm Paul Vercammen. Now back to you.


WALKER: I'm getting chills listening to his voice again. I mean Vin Scully was the Dodgers, the voice of the Dodgers. And like the woman said, I also fell asleep listening to that soothing voice with the Dodgers in the background.

Anyway, thanks for watching, everyone.

MATTINGLY: Good news. We will be back tomorrow. Better news, there's much more ahead on the next hour of CNN Newsroom. Fredricka Whitfield is up next.