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Erin Burnett Outfront

Dow Plunges 700 Points Over Delta Variant Fears As COVID Cases, Hospitalizations And Deaths Jump; Fauci Warns Of A "Smoldering Of This Outbreak" If U.S. Doesn't Get Uncooperative People To Get Vaccinated; McCarthy Meeting With Jan. 6 Select Committee Picks; First Capitol Rioter Sentenced For Felony Gets Eight Months, Could Set Benchmark For 230 Rioters Charged With Same Crime; Biden Backtracks, Says "Facebook Isn't Killing People"; COVID Cases Linked To Olympics On The Rise, Now At 61. Aired 7-8p ET

Aired July 19, 2021 - 19:00   ET


JIM ACOSTA, CNN HOST: Bezos spoke to CNN today about the safety of the mission.


JEFF BEZOS, FOUNDER, BLUE ORIGIN: We really believe this flight is safe. I had friends say to me, "How about the second flight or the third flight? Why do you have to go on the first flight?" And the point is we know the vehicle is safe. If the vehicle is not safe for me, then it's not safe for anyone.


ACOSTA: And we'll be watching. I'm Jim Acosta.

"ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" starts right now.

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN HOST: OUTFRONT next, the Dow tanking tonight over COVID fears. Wasn't this supposed to be the summer where things went back to normal? Why America is moving backwards and fast.

Breaking news, Kevin McCarthy tonight announcing his picks for the special committee to investigate January 6th, Congressman Jim Jordan is one of them.

And play ball, for the first time in Major League Baseball history, tomorrow night's game will be called entirely by women. What took so long? Let's go OUTFRONT.

Good evening, everyone. I'm Kate Bolduan in for Erin Burnett.

OUTFRONT tonight, spooked by COVID. The Dow today tumbling more than 700 points over fears of the Delta variant pushing the country in the wrong direction. COVID cases are up 145 percent from two weeks ago. Hospitalizations are up 50 percent. Deaths are up 12 percent.

And those who are most at risk are the ones who are failing to protect themselves and others with a simple vaccination. According to officials, more than 97 percent of people hospitalized with COVID are unvaccinated, 99.5 percent of deaths right now are among the unvaccinated.

Dr. Anthony Fauci telling me today that if more Americans don't get the shot, things will not get better, quite the opposite.


DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES: If we don't get a significant proportion of these recalcitrant people vaccinated, you're going to be seeing a smoldering of this outbreak in our country for a considerable period of time.


BOLDUAN: And California tonight is one example of that smoldering outbreak. The State reporting its highest COVID positivity rates since the winter surge. The State's rate skyrocketing, almost 500 percent since last month. I'm going to speak to L.A. County's Health Director as they just reinstated their mask mandate.

The reason behind these jaw dropping numbers really across the board which we are seeing in the middle of the summer that was supposed to be the summer where things started getting back to normal in a real way, it comes down to the Delta variant.


DR. SCOTT GOTTLIEB, FMR. FDA COMMISSIONER: Most people will either get vaccinated or have been previously infected or they will get this Delta variant. And for most people who get this Delta variant, it's going to be the most serious virus that they get in their lifetime in terms of the risk of putting them in the hospital.


BOLDUAN: The most serious virus that they get in their lifetime. Yet still only 56 percent of Americans are even partially vaccinated right now. Canada, which began mass vaccinations months after United States now has 71.5 percent of its citizens at least partially vaccinated.

But in the United States, there is a political divide and it's killing Americans. You see it when you look at the two states in this country with the lowest vaccination levels, Alabama 34 percent of residents are fully vaccinated. Only 37 percent of the vote in that state went to Joe Biden. Mississippi 33 percent of residents are fully vaccinated and you can see it right there, 41 percent of the vote there went to Biden.

There is no question that it is political and it is American politics that is killing the American people right now. Jeff Zeleny is OUTFRONT tonight in Cincinnati, Ohio where President Biden will be joining CNN for a town hall on Wednesday night.

Jeff, this is truly a tale of two Americas now and that is clearly on display where you are tonight.

JEFF ZELENY, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL AFFAIRS CORREPONDENT: Well, Kate, you're right. Here in Ohio, there is a stark divide between those who have been vaccinated and those who have not been and those who simply say they will not be. But as President Biden's begin sounding the economic alarm on the eve of his six month in office, the question is anybody listening?



JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: If you're unvaccinated, you are not protected. So please, please get vaccinated. Get vaccinated now.


ZELENY (voice over): An urgent plea tonight from President Biden, imploring Americans to shed their doubts about vaccinations with COVID-19 cases sharply on the rise.


BIDEN: The only way we put it behind us is if more Americans get vaccinated.


ZELENY (voice over): Dena Cranley and Barbara Lynch agree with the President, but they have a blunt reality check for him.


DENA CRANLEY, CHAIR, CINCINNATI FIRST LADIES FOR HEALTH: I don't think they're listening to the politicians.


ZELENY (voice over): Lynch and Cranley have spent months trying to chip away at vaccine hesitancy through their group First Ladies for Health, which does outreach to communities of color and faith.


BARBARA LYNCH, CHAIR, CINCINNATI FIRST LADIES FOR HEALTH: We've come up against the brick wall and we're trying to figure out what we can do now to induce people to get the vaccine. I have a grandson who is not taking the vaccine and we've preached to him, and preached to him and preached to him about it but he's not taking the vaccine.


ZELENY (on camera): Your own grandson?

LYNCH: My own grandson, yes. He believes the stuff that he's seeing on the internet.

(END VIDEO CLIP) ZELENY (voice over): Tonight, the Delta variant is rattling nerves

from the White House to Wall Street with the Dow tumbling more than 700 points in the worst one day decline of the year.


BIDEN: We know that our economic recovery hinges on getting the pandemic under control.


ZELENY (voice over): Two Americas, the vaccinated and the unvaccinated, are coming into sharper focus here in Ohio and across the country. Ohio has fully vaccinated 45.9 percent of its population, just below the U.S. rate of 48.6 percent. Hamilton County home to Cincinnati is slightly higher at 49 percent.


CRANLEY: Now we're in this stage where the supply is very high and the demand is very low.


ZELENY (voice over): The long lines at vaccination centers in the winter and spring have slowed to a summertime trickle. Julianne Nesbit is Health Commissioner of Clermont County just outside Cincinnati where interests in vaccines has dramatically leveled off despite lotteries, celebrity endorsements and more.


JULIANNE NESBIT, HEALTH COMMISSIONER, CLERMONT COUNTY: I think most people who have strong beliefs one way or the other, I don't know that an incentive is going to push them one way or the other to be able to do it.


ZELENY (voice over): The Delta variant has highlighted a new divide in America rooted in far more than politics. Bill Stearns, a lawyer in the conservative suburb of Batavia got his shot early but knows plenty of people who haven't.


BILL STEARNS, OHIO RESIDENT: The primary reason I'm hearing is that it's untested and they don't want to have anything like that in their bodies that they don't control.


ZELENY (voice over): In Cincinnati, 23-year-old Marquise Hughes told us he will not get the vaccination despite pleas from his grandparents and others.


MARQUISE HUGHES, OHIO RESIDENT: I just don't feel like it's safe, can no one convince me.

ZELENY (on camera): Who told you it wasn't safe?

HUGHES: Myself, just my research.



ZELENY (on camera): So certainly, young people, Kate, are at the center of a lot of this vaccine hesitancy simply will not get the vaccine regardless of what adults are saying. It turns out even some of these lottery projects like win a million dollars if you get a shot have backfired on some of these young people. They say it simply raised their skepticism.

Now, there's no question the unvaccinated certainly is a new pandemic for them. But soon, it could be felt by people on both sides of this divide, Kate.

BOLDUAN: Jeff, thank you so much from Ohio for us tonight.

OUTFRONT with me now, the former Republican Governor of Ohio, John Kasich and Barbara Ferrer, she's the Director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. Her office has reinstituted just this weekend the indoor mask requirement in L.A. County, the most populous county in the United States.

Governor, is there anything after seeing - Jeff did a great report from your home state. Do you think there's anything that President Biden can do at this point to really address this division or as Republican Senator Bill Cassidy put it, the President shouldn't be advocating for vaccines because there's simply too much mistrust of him by those who aren't vaccinated?

JOHN KASICH, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Look, I've spent a lot of time, I've talked to Dr. Andy Thomas at Ohio State, Clay Marsh down at West Virginia. Kate, let me give you some numbers. People over the age of 65 in Ohio, 80 percent of them have been vaccinated. People over 60, 70 percent.

But when you look at young people, those in their 20s and 30s, they're not taking this seriously. You just heard this report. And when you think about people of color, particularly African-Americans, they're very skeptical about the entire healthcare system, because they believe and for good reason that they were mistreated. And you think of that Tuskegee project and how bad that was.

And when you look at rural Americans, they're rural because they want to get away from everything. I'll give you a couple of things that I heard today. Access for rural people, not convenient. Distrust in the vaccine, the side effects. Things that could be contained in the vaccine. Distrust in science. Distrust in government. If you want to get these folks vaccinated, it's got to be with their

friends and their neighbors and their families. But I know of a young man it took forever for him to get his vaccination. And I know some people that don't have it today who are not young, they don't trust it. They say it hasn't been fully approved. And for young people, they're like, if I get it, I get it. I'll be fine.

So we want to look at this with clear eyes. The minority community, it's got to be family to family, neighbor to neighbor, churches, associations. With the young people, we just got to keep talking to them about it and it's about their grandparents and not getting their grandparents sick.

And with rural voters, rural people, rural residents, historically have never bought into all the vaccines. They have lower rates across the board. And in the rural areas, it's got to be neighbor to neighbor. And organizations like the farm bureau, organizations like their churches, that's how you get these up.


But politics just talking to them and yelling at them and all that, isn't very effective.

BOLDUAN: It's not done much to this point, that's for sure. But look no further than L.A. County where you're seeing a resurgence. I mean, Director, your county has seen a 500 percent jump in COVID cases in the last month. What are you seeing now? What are you most concerned about going forward?

BARBARA FERRER, DIRECTOR, LOS ANGELES COUNTY PUBLIC HEALTH DEPT.: Yes. Thank you so much, Kate, for having us on today. The biggest issue is, I think, as the Governor rightfully said is we have a lot of people still to be vaccinated. We have 70 percent of L.A. County residents with at least one dose and we have 61 percent fully vaccinated of people 16 and older.

But it's not enough because in L.A. County, that means we've got 4 million people not yet vaccinated, including 1.3 million children under the age of 12. The way to protect those children who can't yet get vaccinated is obviously to increase the vaccination numbers among the people who have yet to come in and get vaccinated.

But while we're doing that, while we're working to build trust, to build confidence in the vaccine, to answer what really for many people are reasonable set of questions to work on making sure that there are trusted providers, trusted leaders, neighbor to neighbor, I'd love what the governor said about that.

While we're working to make sure that we're doing everything we can to get good information to people, so they can make a decision that they feel comfortable about in terms of getting vaccinated, we've got to protect each other still. And that's why here in L.A. County, we're asking people when you're indoors, please go ahead and put your mask back on. BOLDUAN: Governor, Canada started mass vaccinated citizens later than

the United States, but now they're beating the United States when it comes to this. I asked Dr. Anthony Fauci about this today. I want to play for you what he told me.


FAUCI: Canada is doing better not because we are trying any less than they are trying. It's because in Canada you don't have that divisiveness of people not wanting to get vaccinated in many respects on the basis of ideology and political persuasion. And that's something that we have been saying for some time now.


BOLDUAN: Look, I hear what the Doctor is saying and I'm stuck by, is it ...

KASICH: I don't buy it.

BOLDUAN: You don't buy it?

KASICH: I just don't buy what he says.

BOLDUAN: Why don't you buy it?

KASICH: No, I don't.

BOLDUAN: Because what he's saying is the political divide, I mean, how can you dispute it though?

KASICH: Well, because people who are 65 and over, 80 percent in Ohio have been vaccinated. People who were 60, 70 percent are vaccinated. The problem is with the minority community, the distrust health care and also in the rural areas.

In the rural areas, yeah, they happen to be Republican but they've always been skeptical about whether - look, they can't get access and they're skeptical about a number of things. And when you're living in a rural area and somebody from the government shows up at your door, you're like, wait, you're an Indiana girl. You understand this.

So yes, would it be great if Trump came out and said get a vaccination. Absolutely it would be great if he did that. But I think to try to say this is political, we need to go deeper than that and for the public health officials, they need to think that way. It's neighbor to neighbor just like the doctor said, neighbor to neighbor, associations that are trusted and family members. That's how it has to work.

BOLDUAN: I'll give you this, you're totally right that if it's political or not it doesn't matter, because saying it's politics that's dividing folks is not going to get people any closer to getting a shot. I 100 percent agree with that, because the net result is the same. People are just going to distrust it more. Director, the Sheriff of L.A. County, he said this weekend that he's

not going to enforce this new mask requirement. And he said in part it's because he doesn't have enough resources to do so on his staff. But he also went directly at you, which was surprising. I want to play for everyone what he said.


SHERIFF ALEX VILLANUEVA, LOS ANGELES COUNTY: The person who issued this was not a medical professional. The Director of Department Public Health, Barbara Ferrer is not a medical doctor nor is she an epidemiologist, number one. Number two, these are not guidelines consistent with the CDC.


BOLDUAN: I was surprised that how personal he kind of made it, Director. What is going on here? Like how do you respond to this?

FERRER: I'm not sure what's going on with the Sheriff. I mean, I do want to say that there's a little bit of grandstanding because the sheriff has never enforced the mask mandate here in L.A. County. We have our own team of environmental health inspectors and health inspectors and outreach workers that really go around, provide everybody with good information.

We work with all our businesses and work sites to make sure that they understand what the directives are and why they're important and then we help make sure that there's compliance. So I'm not really sure what that is directed at and I would say it's probably not worth focusing on either.


I mean, there's important work in front of us. We do need to get back to slowing transmission here in L.A. County. We want our recovery journey to continue. We want to stay open with all of our businesses thriving and the way to do that right now is to make sure that everybody is masking up when they're indoors and that more and more people feel confident and come in and get that vaccine.

BOLDUAN: Director Ferrer, thank you for your time. Governor, it was always good to see you.

KASICH: Kate, that was a cheap shot. That was a cheap shot on the doctor. And finally, Kate, it's important social media is responsible and not promote these crazy conspiracy theories out there, another point. But thank you for having us on, Kate. You're the best.

BOLDUAN: Another point in a big discussion we will have another time. It's good to see you, Governor, as always. Thank you.

KASICH: Thank you.

FERRER: Thank you. BOLDUAN: And please, and you do not want to miss CNN's exclusive CNN

Town Hall with President Biden. He's going to be joining my colleague Don Lemon this Wednesday night at 8 pm Eastern.

OUTFRONT for us next, breaking news, Kevin McCarthy names five Republicans to the committee investigating insurrection and he's meeting with them right now. Among them, Jim Jordan who has said this.


REP. JIM JORDAN (R-OH): The facts are how do you incite a breach of the Capitol when it was already planned.


BOLDUAN: Plus, a big backtrack from President Biden after he said Facebook is killing people by allowing misinformation about the COVID vaccine to spread. So what is he saying tonight with cases surging across the U.S.?

And a Major League Baseball milestone, an all-female team will be calling the game and hosting the pre and post-game shows. I'm going to speak with one of the women about to make history.



BOLDUAN: We have breaking news, the top Republican in the House, Kevin McCarthy is announcing five Republicans that he is naming to the January 6th Select Committee. Manu Raju is OUTFRONT from Capitol Hill with more on this. So Manu, who is on McCarthy's list?

MANU RAJU, CNN CHIEF CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, some of his closest allies and some of the staunchest defenders of the former President Donald Trump. These five appointees came after weeks in which the Republican Leader had not named anyone to serve on this committee, this despite eight Democrats being selected or eight members selected by Nancy Pelosi, seven of whom are Democrats, one Republican Liz Cheney selected by Nancy Pelosi.

But five Republicans appointed now by the Republican Leader. That includes Congressman Jim Banks, he is the Indiana Republican very close ally to McCarthy. He will be leading the ranking Republican on the GOP side. Rodney Davis of Illinois as well as Kelly Armstrong of North Dakota, freshmen Troy Nehls of Texas.

Now, two of those members voted to certify the January 6th election, that includes Kelly Armstrong, as well as Rodney Davis. The other three voted to overturn the electoral results and two of those members; Jim Jordan and Jim Banks signed on to the Texas lawsuit that would have invalidated millions of votes across several battleground states.

But in talking to these members just now, I talked to some of them as they came down, one of them Jim Jordan. I asked him what do Republicans want to accomplish on this committee. He said this committee is being used to attack Donald Trump. That was his view when I asked him what Republicans wanted to do.

So you can see this is setting up for very partisan classes, but Democrats say they want to investigate everything, including the former president's actions. And Republicans are or at least one of them on the panel is making clear he views this as an effort to go after Donald Trump and you can bet he will defend the former president's actions as well, as well as the several of these others as well. We'll wait to hear what the others say.

But next week, Kate, the first hearing before this Select Committee will take place and then we'll hear testimony from Capitol Police officers about their experiences before they decide to investigate other matters, including the former president's actions.

BOLDUAN: So wait Manu, going in even before they hear anything or see anything, even though they live through it and they should know better, these Republicans are already going in saying that this whole thing is just about taking down Donald Trump. So they clearly feel that their entire job then is to defend Donald Trump and thus defend the insurrectionists. I mean, that's what this committee is already setting up for.

RAJU: Well, that's what Jim Jordan made very clear to me just moments ago. He has been saying that from the beginning and he was also part of that effort to try to overturn the electoral results. On January 6th he did vote twice to do that and he has been a staunch defender of Donald Trump from the beginning and others on this committee as well.

One of the things to watch out for too, Kate, is how Republicans have been signaling that they want to go after Nancy Pelosi, what she did or what she did not do to secure the Capitol that day, wants that to be the focus of the Republican side as well in the weeks to come. So you're seeing how this is going to play out.

Republicans, of course, blocked an outside commission from investigator going forward. They contended that would be filled with partisan politics. But this Select Committee undoubtedly will devolve into a partisan fight, at least that's where things were headed at the moment least what some Republicans are suggesting they're viewing right now, Kate.

BOLDUAN: Speaker Pelosi has veto power over the members on this committee. Is she going to use this here?

RAJU: That is unclear. At the moment, they say they are reviewing what the speaker, what the leader has come up with Republican Leader Pelosi does according to the rules can say essentially no that she will not allow these members to go forward. But if she were to do that, undoubtedly that would create outrage among Republicans.

It's unclear if she would do take such a stab. It's rare to reject member from the other side on a select committee. This is a typical process that is done here. But she does have that power. Some Democrats believe she should use it. It's unclear though what the Speaker herself will do.

BOLDUAN: Manu, thanks so much. Great reporting as always.

Also tonight, eight months in federal prison, that is the first felony sentence for a January 6th rioter. Thirty-eight-year-old Paul Hodgkins, you see him right there. Traveled to the Capitol from Florida that day carrying a Trump flag all the way into the Senate chamber. Prosecutors had to ask for a harsher sentence of 18 months in prison, so quote, according - "People who might be contemplating a sequel to January 6 will stand down and there won't be a next time."

OUTFRONT now Elie Honig, CNN Senior Legal Analyst and former Federal Prosecutor. Ellie, what do you think of this sentence?

ELIE HONIG, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: Kate, I think it's light. I think it's within the range of reasonable outcomes, but I think it's light.


As you've noted, prosecutors asked for a year and a half year or 18 months. Prosecutors, we don't always get what we want, but this judge gave less than half of that.

I have seen many, many people commit less serious crimes in this and do significantly more time than eight months. And one of the key concepts and purposes of sentencing is deterrent, sending a message to this defendant but also to other defendants that this conduct is serious and if you're thinking about it, you better not, because the law is going to come down on you and I don't think an eight month sentence meets that goal.

BOLDUAN: You've been asking why the department has not charged any of the rioters with sedition. I mean, based off of what you kind of see happening and playing out here today and beyond, do you think that is still coming? And what is today mean for the most violent of those people charged, who have attacked officers?

HONIG: So it means the people who committed acts of violence unlike this defendant today are almost certainly going to do jail time and significant jail time and more than eight months. Are sedition charges coming? I don't think they are. We've now seen over 500 people charge and I'm baffled. I think DOJ has made a mistake here by not charging sedition.

Today's charges are a perfect example. This defendant was convicted of the crime of obstruction of Congress. One of the definitions of the crime of sedition is interfering or obstructing with a governmental function. Here that would be the counting of the electoral ballots.

I think DOJ has missed an opportunity to make a strong statement here about just how serious the January 6 crimes were and I think by charging only the lesser crimes to trespass the obstruction of Congress, but not sedition, I think DOJ is sending the absolute wrong message about what happened on January 6.

BOLDUAN: Elie, thank you very much.

OUTFRONT for us next Biden retreats.

HONIG: Thanks, Kate.

BOLDUAN: The President forced to explain what he says he really meant about Facebook 'killing people'.

And worries about the economy are now creeping up on Biden. How can he remain optimistic with danger signs all around?



BOLDUAN: Tonight, President Biden versus Facebook. The president backtracking on his bold criticism that Facebook is killing people by allowing COVID misinformation to spread on its platform.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Facebook isn't killing people, these 12 people are out there giving misinformation. Anyone listening to it is getting hurt by it. It's killing people. My hope is that Facebook instead of taking him personally, that somehow I'm saying Facebook is killing people, that they would do something about the misinformation.


BOLDUAN: So Biden was referring to a report stating 12 people account for 65 percent of the anti-vaccine misinformation on Facebook. And the walk-back coming up to the tech giant blasted the White House with an unnamed Facebook official telling CNN, quote, the White House is looking for a scapegoat for missing the vaccine goals.

OUTFRONT now, Paul Begala, former White House counselor to President Clinton, and a Democratic strategist, and Scott Jennings, former senior adviser to Mitch McConnell, and former special assistant to President George W. Bush.

Paul, what do you think of this? Is this Biden admitting he went too far on Friday? Was Biden just trying to move on?

PAUL BEGALA, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I hope he doesn't think he went too far. You know, a lot of his personality is to try to calm the waters. And that was a very incendiary statement, a very un-Biden-like in that sense. So, I understand in temperament, he wants to walk it back.

But this is based on our surgeon general's report that came out on Friday. And he concludes, in my words, Facebook is hazardous to your health in the same way in 1962, the surgeon general said air pollution is back to us. In 1964 he said sacred smoking us. Facebook is damaging your health. So it's because of this misinformation that the president is talking about. There's this phenomenon that is really important to understand called

algorithmic augmentation. Facebook is not just a neutral platform. They're not just a bulletin board. They had fuel, they add a jet fuel, they add steroids to the negative, to the divisive, to the dishonest, because they make more money off of it.

That's what I think the surgeon general's report speaks to. People should read it, it's a terrific report. But that's he problem is Facebook is force feeding misinformation to people, and they've got to stop.

BOLDUAN: So, then, Scott, you don't think Biden should have been involved in this in the first place. After hearing what Paul said, why?

SCOTT JENNINGS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Look, I'm in Louisville, Kentucky tonight. Kate and Paul, good to see both.

And I'm talking about Louis Brandies, the great Supreme Court justice, also from Louisville, who once said: The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding.

Who does that describe in American life right now? Well meaning without understanding, and of someone with zeal? That's Joe Biden who frequently goes out and says things of a hyperbolic nature, they turn out not to be true, that he has to walk back. He did it on Facebook. He says you're killing people. Now he says they're not. Was it misinformation when he said they were killing people?

Look, I took the vaccine, I studied the data. I think they work. I think everyone should get it.

And at the same time, I would warn everybody out there, if you want the White House getting involved in censoring free speech, ask yourself this -- would you have the same position if Donald Trump or some Republican, or the president, I bet you would not. It's a dangerous, slippery slope, and Biden ought to stay out.

BOLDUAN: Paul, I mean, does Scott have a point here?

BEGALA: It's a great point, it's just not apropos of this issue, because nobody is saying the government should censor. I'm certainly not. They should never censor Americans.

SCOTT: Jen Psaki said it. Our friend Jen said it. Our friend Jen said it.


BEGALA: Justice Brandeis also said sunlight is the best disinfectant. Facebook is not being transparent. They're not opening up their algorithm to us.

But "The Wall Street Journal" reported they obtained back in May, an internal Facebook document, this is what Facebook says about their algorithm and how they make money off of hate. Facebook's own memo says, our algorithms exploit the human brain's attraction to divisiveness. Left unchecked the algorithm will feed users more, and more divisive content in an effort to gain user tension and increase time on the platform.

Facebook makes more money if they can divide us against each other. And if they feed misinformation, they make more money, still. They have to stop. That's what I hope our president, and everyone, we'll start talking about.

BOLDUAN: Look, Scott, I'm not going to quote Justice Brandeis because I honestly could not think of one of the top of my head and feel like the odd woman out right now. But no matter what words Biden uses, this is a real problem. Millions of people get their news that they seem to trust from Facebook, and the misinformation and straight-up lies about vaccines. It is pervasive. Speaking to people, where did they get their information, and why decided they don't want to get the vaccine, a lot of it is from Facebook.

So if something's got to give them, what should it be?

SCOTT: Look, I think it is at some point, you have to acknowledge the fact that people are going to do what they're going to do. We all have access to information. Yes, I agree, there is misinformation about the vaccine. As I said, I believe it, I took it, my family took it, I hope other people do, especially people in my party, the Republican Party.

But at some juncture, we have to recognize there's going to be a cohort of Americans that simply aren't going to do it. There's also people that don't wear their seatbelts, and there are people that don't wear helmets when they ride motorcycles. They've got Facebook up in Canada, and as far as I can tell from the reporting --


BOLDUAN: But if you don't wear your seatbelt it doesn't kill me or my kids. If you don't wear it, it doesn't kill me or my kid. It kills you. It's different.

SCOTT: There is never going to be a moment when you have 100 percent of people doing anything in this country, even if it's the right thing to do. Even if all three of us agree that it's a smart thing to do. And to me, it is vastly more important that we protect the underpinnings of our free society, which is free speech.

We have a recent history of calling things misinformation on this topic that turned out to not be misinformation. Such as the origins of where COVID came from and the first place. I think it would be dramatically a bad thing for American culture if we go down this road of letting a White House pressure private companies into censorship.

I'm just telling you, you don't want government meddling in free speech on this or any other topic.

BEGALA: I totally agree, Scott. But don't you think, this was Dr. Murthy is suggesting. Why doesn't Facebook amplify the truthful information from Dr. Fauci --

BOLDUAN: Well, they say they are.

BEGALA: -- from CDC, from Sanjay Gupta, why don't they promote the positive stuff instead of promoting the dishonest stuff?

BOLDUAN: Guys, it's good to see, I'm glad we solved it all right here.

BEGALA: Thanks, Kate.

BOLDUAN: Thanks, gentlemen.

OUTFONT for us next, warning signs all around about the economy. How worried should President Biden be? Presidential historian Jon Meacham is my guest.

And never of COVID cases linked to the Tokyo Olympics is going up. Yet another U.S. athlete forced out of the games. Dr. Sanjay Gupta is live from Tokyo.



BOLDUAN: New tonight, President Biden saying that he remains optimistic about the state of the economy, and rejecting growing concerns about inflation despite rising prices.


BIDEN: There's nobody suggesting there's unchecked inflation on the way, no serious economists. That's totally different. I mean, look, the stock market is higher than it's been in all of history, even when it went down this month. Even down this month. Now, I don't look at the stock market as a means by which to judge the economy like my predecessor did. But he'd be very -- he'd be talking about it every day for the last 5 months about how the stock market is so high.


BOLDUAN: OUTFRONT now, Jon Meacham, the Pulitzer Prize-winning historian, who has advised several U.S. presidents, including President Biden. He's also the host of "The Hope Through History" podcast, which is now in its 2nd season.

It's good to see you, Jon.

So the Dow today closed more than 700 points down, the biggest since October. Yet Biden, in his speech, he was painting a picture of don't be afraid. Do not worry.

But the fear is real right now. Look no further than the markets. How big of an issue could this be for Biden?

JON MEACHAM, PRESIDENTIAL HISTORIAN: Well, historically, presidents are judged on economic performance. You can ask George Herbert Walker Bush, how that went when we went to in recession in 1991. He came out of the Gulf War at a 91 percent approval rating, higher than any presidents since Truman, and by Election Day, 1992, he polled exactly 39 percent of the popular vote.

That said, I think the president is on solid ground. There is an enormous amount of money coming into the economy from the various COVID relief packages. Presumably, there will be an enormous amount of money and jobs coming in because of the infrastructure work if it gets through.

And so, I think what I know the president is more interested in ultimately is how do we create means of opportunity, engines of mobility in the long term? Not just one day at the market.

But democracies only survive, democracies only thrive when people believe that they have a fair shot, and that tomorrow can be better than today. If you look at the numbers, if you look at all the social science indicators we have, we are at a historic level of, low level of, trust in the future. And I think this president, in the fullness of time, is going to be judged not least on the extent to which you can restore that trust.

BOLDUAN: I am generally fascinated how presidents talk about the economy. When they claim it is there, is how they do not, how they message on it. And you heard Biden reference Donald Trump's obsession with the markets, and claiming winds. From the very beginning, to the very end, of Trump's presidency, that was definitely true.


Here is a reminder.

MEACHAM: Well, I think because it was --


DONALD TRUMP, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We have the highest stock market in history.

Our markets are hitting records all the time. There are many records of the highest stock market.

Our stock market is an all-time high, who would've thought that.


BOLDUAN: And Biden's point, today, is that is not how he is going to be measuring a good economy, as you're talking about opportunity. But when it comes to messaging, Jon, which is important, Trump's message was very easy to grasp. Is Biden missing that?

MEACHAM: I honestly don't believe so for this reason. Donald Trump reacted, elementally to anything that was on the TV screen. And because the numbers, because the market numbers were there, that was his vernacular, right? That was how he viewed the world. I really do believe that, temperamentally, the president is thinking

more, in terms of years, and decades, than his predecessor was ever even remotely capable of doing. I don't say that to reflectively defend the president, but if you do when I did, which is look back a lot, it's fascinating that we have a 78-year-old, American president, who thought his political career was done, right? I mean, once 2016 happened, Biden moved off, and that was that.

And yet, history, and faith have brought this man back to try to manage a pandemic, manage a deep crisis in democracy, manage what I think of is a crisis of trust. In these divisions that are as vivid, and as deep, as any point since the Civil War. And that's not hyperbole. You know, the Confederates got into --


BOLDUAN: Jon, you like literally read my mind. I was going to say, lean on your podcast. It is all about finding hope through history, and finding it. When you look at the moment you have just, perfectly, described, what hope do you draw from history, for this moment you just laid out?

MEACHAM: It was never preordained. American history is not a fairytale. There was never a once upon a time, and there is never going to be a heavily ever after. It's the same case in our lives. And that's what our republic is, and this may sound overly grand for a Monday, but democracy is about all of us. We are the human elements of it -- the state, the public square is fullest expression, the fullest manifestation of our dispositions of heart, and of mind.

And so, there are structural issues, obviously. There's a filibuster, there is a constitutional structure that champions the rights of the majority over the majority. There are any number of issues.

But, fundamentally, if you look back in the American history, there has been a moral insistence, a moral insistence that what Jefferson wrote, in the summer of 1776 should be applied not just some, but to all. And we -- American history can be measured by the degree to which we expand that promise as oppose to limiting it.

BOLDUAN: If that's grand, I'll take it Monday through Friday. Thanks, Jon. It's very good to see you.

MEACHAM: Yeah (ph).

BOLDUAN: OUTFRONT for us next, Dr. Sanjay Gupta live from Tokyo on more American athletes being forced to sit out of the games because of coronavirus. The opening ceremony only days away.

And five women about to make Major League Baseball history. I'll speak with one of them.


[19:51:31] BOLDUAN: Tonight, another American athlete has tested positive for COVID in Tokyo. Basketball player Katie Lou Samuelson announcing that she is withdrawing from the games, and men's basketball player Zach LaVine held back from his flight to Tokyo due to health protocols. With just four days until opening ceremony, the total number of positive cases linked with accredited personnel is now at 61.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta is OUTFRONT at the Olympics in Tokyo.


DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Four days now before the opening ceremonies of the 2020 Olympic Games, and COVID-19 is front and center. At least three U.S. athletes have tested positive for the virus.

Katie Lou Samuelson, a member of the U.S. Olympics women's basketball team is the latest and won't be attending the games in Japan. She joins Kara Eaker, an alternate on the U.S. women's gymnastics team who tested positive here in Tokyo.

MARK EAKER, FATHER OF KARA EAKER: She's had multiple COVID tests come back positive. She has no symptoms. She's been vaccinated. But the biggest disappointment is that this takes her out of it completely.

GUPTA: Eaker must isolate for at least ten days before being allowed to return to the United States. And another member of her team is also in quarantine.

LINSEY MARR, LEADING EXPERT IN AIRBORNE TRANSMISSION OF VIRUSES: I'm sure they were exposed, but to have become infected from that person, I think it would depend on how much time they have been spending together.

GUPTA: So far, the games have seen dozens of cases but only a handful are among athletes, including one cluster that led to 21 close contacts. These cases, though, aren't coming as a complete surprise. Keep in mind, the athletes are tested daily.

BRIAN MCCLOSKEY, OLYMPIC GAMES LEADING HEALTH ADVISOR: If I thought all the tests we did were going to be negative, I wouldn't bother doing the tests in the first place. The numbers we're seeing are actually extremely low, probably lower than we expected to see if anything.

GUPTA: Once health authorities approved, close contacts can still return to the competition, but they are subject to additional quarantine measures, which may include moving to separate rooms, and training facilities, eating alone, and using dedicated vehicles.

MARR: We know that testing catches people, perhaps, after they have already been contagious, and had the chance to spread the virus to other people.

GUPTA: The IOC estimates more than 80 percent of residents of the Olympic Village will be vaccinated. In Tokyo, 2020 officials maintain the athletes are safe.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The IOC, in Tokyo 2020, are absolutely clear, that the only peak range is a safe place to stay.

GUPTA: With more transmissible berry ends, and like 11,000 athletes from around the globe, the IOC has laid in a number of safety measures, masks, distancing, all of it to try and stave off of super- spreader event. But the major question looming is, will these positive cases show that the protocols are working, or underscore the feeling that holding the Olympics was ill-advised, in the first place.

DR. MICHAEL OSTERHOLM, AMERICAN EPIDEMIOLOGIST: We had real concerns about the potential for transformation at the Olympics, well before delta as a variant, took hold around the world. When that did happen, in only heightened or concern.


BOLDUAN: And Sanjay is joining me now from Tokyo.

And, Sanjay, you have at least two fully vaccinated athletes from the U.S. testing positive for COVID. What does that say about breakthroughs in the general population?

GUPTA: Yeah, this is going to be really interesting to follow this, Kate, because as you know, the CDC in the United States, they don't recommend that a vaccinated person get tested, even if they've been exposed, as long as they don't have symptoms.


In fact, you can see how much testing has gone down overall in the United States, probably going down 80 percent since the end of last year. Now, that's important because we don't know with the real rate of breakthrough infections are. They may be much higher than we realize. The important question will be, are people also getting sick? Which they don't appear to be, if they've been vaccinated.

So, that's going to be important. This is the first time we have a world event, of the size, coming together, to basically try to look at that data.

BOLDUAN: Also, a local population dealing with the Olympics being there?

GUPTA: You know, it's interesting, Kate. As you might imagine, it's the Olympics. It's the middle of a pandemic, 12 percent of the country here is fully vaccinated, not very high, the numbers have gone up for the delta variant.

So, right now, there has been these public opinion polls, and they say that about 80 percent of Japanese residents, they were pulled before the Olympics said this is not the time to have it. They knew this could not be postponed again. It was either canceled, or go forward. But, the public opinion of this happening here is pretty low. 80 percent say that. BOLDUAN: Sanjay, thank you so much for being there and for your


GUPTA: You got it. Thank you.

BOLDUAN: Five women will make history tomorrow as Major League Baseball's first female on-air crew, when they call the Baltimore Orioles/Tampa Bay Rays game.

On team are Melanie Newman, Alanna Rizzo, Heidi Watney, Lauren Gardner and Sarah Langs, who will be doing color commentary.

Sarah is joining me now. She's a reporter and analyst for

Sarah, this is so cool, but at the same, time I wish that this was not such a big deal in 2021. But, it is. Is this a big deal for you?

SARAH LANGS, MLB.COM REPORTER AND ANALYST: For sure. First of all, thank you for showing interest in this, and for having me on, I really appreciate it.

You know, I think that is the right sentiment. In a lot of ways, sure, this should have happened a really long time ago. I, certainly, as a baseball fan growing up, certainly, think that. But you know what? We are here now, and it's really exciting that we're doing this for the first time. Mostly because, once we get past Tuesday, it isn't a first anymore. This will just be something that happens, you know? And that what's really exciting to me, it is just making this more part of the norm.

I mean, so many women out there, our baseball fans, and are interested working towards media, just across the board, any sport. And, if you see it, you can be at, and we will help people see that, in real-time. On YouTube, which is a huge platform, it's a global game, so really, really excited for that.

BOLDUAN: Absolutely. Does this feel -- does this game feel different, do you, think from other games? I mean, do you feel a different level of a "first" has been labeled to it?

LANGS: I don't really feel pressure. I mean, I love baseball, I talk about baseball for a living, I talked about baseball before I did it for a living.

So, there's not really any pressure there. But there's certainly more excitement, and there's more energy around it. I have called other games, and we were not duly doing the same level of coverage for it, leading up to it. And it's been really refreshing to see just how excited, just the Twitter world, the online world, whatever you want to say, has been about this game, and how much interest has been put into it.

So, obviously, that does distinguish it a bit from another game, another regular season game, but, no, I don't think there's any pressure. I mean, Alanna and Melania are such professionals, they're so outstanding at outstanding at what they do, and I've also been doing this. Not as long as them, but pretty long. And, you know, there's no added pressure in that way.

BOLDUAN: How does this come about? Was this presented to you guys as a first?

LANGS: You know, that's a great question. I got an email, the way I typically do for these types of things that said, hey, could you do this game on July 20th? I said yes, and the response, was great, you're going to do it with Melanie, you're going to be with Alanna, and it really wasn't until we started interviewing "The New York Times" to announce the event, and everything else that is sort of dawned on me, oh, this is the first time this is happening.

I mean, I couldn't think of a prior instance, in the Major Leagues. There's a minor league broadcast that Melanie was part of, with Susie, I believe, in 2019, but I couldn't think of a Major League one. I wasn't necessarily sure that meant that there hadn't been one.

So, I really appreciate that that approach was taken. These are qualified people who are doing their jobs. They just happen to be all the same gender, doing it together, and they definitely appreciated that it wasn't, hey, let's go do this, and it's awesome that we also get to make history along the way.

BOLDUAN: Yeah, you are just rock at your jobs, that's why you're doing it.

This is very exciting. Congratulations, but let's have it to be not the last. Thanks, Sarah.

LANGS: That's -- thank you so much for having me.

BOLDUAN: We can and where we begin, which is so cool, but what took so long? Very excited for that game.

Thank you all so much for joining us tonight. I'm Kate Bolduan. Don't forget you can watch OUTFRONT anytime, anywhere on CNN Go.

Anderson Cooper and "AC360" starts now.