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Biden Returns to Isolation; Elections Tomorrow in the Primaries; Bill Russell Remembers as an Icon; Josina Anderson is Interviewed about DeShaun Watson; Grain Ship Leaves Russian Port. Aired 6:30-7a ET

Aired August 01, 2022 - 06:30   ET




BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN ANCHOR: President Biden is back in isolation this morning after testing positive for a rebound case of Covid. Biden coming out of isolation just last week after his first bout with the virus.

So, let's go to CNN's Arlette Saenz at the White House here.

Arlette, what's happening?

ARLETTE SAENZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, Brianna, the White House says that President Biden is feeling well, but his physician, Dr. Kevin O'Connor, said that this latest positive test is likely a rebound after the president underwent that anti-viral treatment of Paxlovid. That is something that doctors have found has occurred in a small percentage of people.

Now, the president had been testing negative for several days last week after that initial run with Covid, but it was on Saturday when he received another positive test which has sent him into isolation.

The White House had been working to limit his exposure to others as he had returned to working in person in the West Wing last week with many of his events socially distanced. So far the White House has said the president had six close contacts but all have tested negative up until this date.

But this has really up ending the president's schedule. He was set to travel to Wilmington, Delaware, over the weekend and Michigan tomorrow. But he is now back in isolation here at the White House. The White House has tried to show that he is still working in isolation. On Saturday he Facetimed a group of demonstrators up on Capitol Hill who were protesting that Republican blockade of that legislation to help veterans who had exposure to burn pits.

But one thing we will be watching over the course of the coming week is when exactly the president will be emerging from this isolation. This is currently his day two in isolation. Day five would be on Thursday. The White House has yet to say whether he will serve out that full five days or simply wait for a negative test. But this is now the 12th day since President Biden has been able to leave the White House.


KEILAR: Twelve days. All right, Arlette, thank you so much, live for us from the White House.

Several key primary races about to be decided with some Republicans who voted to impeach Trump on the ballot. Harry Enten is here with an election day preview for us.

JOHN AVLON, CNN ANCHOR: And a significant development overnight in Ukraine with an impact on the global food supply. Ukraine calling it a day of relief for the world. CNN is live on the ground.



AVLON: All right, we are one day away from a round of primaries that will decide several key matchups in five states.

And joining us now to break it all down is Harry Enten, CNN's senior data reporter.

How are you, my man?


AVLON: Let's start with a little state called Kansas.

ENTEN: A little state called Kansas in the middle of the country. OK. We've got a big thing on the ballot. Basically right now you have a constitutional right to an abortion in the state of Kansas. But they're trying to overturn that.

Take a look here. Abortion should be always or mostly legal, 48 percent of the state of Kansas. Look at that, always or mostly illegal, 47 percent in the state of Kansas. This is based on an average going back since 2012. This should be a tight vote. But the thing that we spoke about last night on the phone, John, is, Kansas is a very Republican state. If anti-abortion activists can't win in Kansas, where can they win?

AVLON: Right, but it's got a Democratic governor.

ENTEN: Right.

AVLON: And this is on a knife's edge. So this is the kind of thing that, you know, the trajectory implications or the small number of votes could be huge.

ENTEN: It is well within the margin of error here.

AVLON: All right. Now the next category is those House Republicans who voted to impeach

Trump. Some key primaries tomorrow. What do you see?

ENTEN: Yes, so, look, look at the 2022 primary performance of House Republicans who voted to impeach Donald Trump. Tom Rice got blown out down here in South Carolina back in June. But David Valadao was able to advance to the general election.

Now, you'll notice this little star next to Valadao's name.

AVLON: Oh, the asterisk.

ENTEN: What is that? That is because it was a top two primary. All the Democrats and all the Republicans run together on the ballot at the same time.


If we look in Washington, there are two candidates who voted to impeach Trump who, in fact, are facing off in top two primaries verse Meijer, down there in Michigan third, who, in fact, does not have a top two primary. So, this could be beneficial to these two because there could be a lot of Democrats who might be voting in these primaries and basically say, you know what, you voted to impeach trump, we're going to back you.

AVLON: And if that's the case, and Meijer is the candidate who Democrats have been spending against. The guy who's voted for a lot of sort of bipartisan legislation recently. But if the takeaway is that the top two primaries, the open primaries, are what help Republicans who stood up to Trump survive to make the general election, that seems to be a pretty key takeaway.

ENTEN: It could be. We'll see what happens.

AVLON: We'll see.

ENTEN: It will be very interesting to watch.

AVLON: All right, let's keep on trucking.

ENTEN: Let's keep on trucking.

In the state of Washington - so, one of the things I'm really interested in, you know, we mentioned that Washington has a top two primary system, right? If you look back over history, right, you look at 2018, 2014, and 2010, and what you essentially do is you add up the Democratic votes statewide and the Republican votes statewide and you compare that to the past presidential vote, the shift that we see in the Washington primary, right, look at this, look at the shift that you see nationally in November, it's highly predictive of what happens in November.

So, if you look here, look, Republicans did well. Then you see Republicans do well. You see Republicans do well in 2014. Then Republicans do well in the Washington primary national. And then the same thing here, Democrats, Democrat.

AVLON: Now, OK. I - this is a deep cut, but I love it because, you know, we'll be revisiting this after we see the shift. But if Washington state is a bellwether, which, who knew that Washington state primaries could be a national bellwether, there's going to be a lot to learn coming out (ph).

ENTEN: The number to watch is 19 because that was what Joe Biden won the state of Washington by. If Republicans only lose by 10, could be good news for them.

AVLON: Fascinating.

All right, let's head over to Arizona.

AVLON: Let's head over to Arizona. Republican primary there. Kari Lake. So these are the betting odds, the chance of winning.

Kari Lake, look at that, she is the favorite at 78 percent chance of winning. You see her opponent there at just a 22 percent chance of winning. But it wouldn't be shocking - it wouldn't be shocking if Kari Lake lost, but she is backed by Donald Trump. This would be a big win for Trump in the state of Arizona in that Republican gubernatorial primary.

AVLON: And some sign of that tightening and -- on the Republican side and Katie Hobbs seems to be in poll position on the Democratic side, is that right?

ENTEN: Correct. It should be a very competitive general election match-up. Katie Hobbs, the Democratic candidate. This is going to be a state and a race to watch come the fall.

AVLON: All right, let's switch over to the Senate race in AZ.

ENTEN: Yes, let's - you know, another thing -- another race in which you are looking at the general elections as well. Blake Masters, the clear favorite here for, again, we're looking at the betting odds chance of winning. An 87 percent chance. Mark Kelly, the incumbent Democrat in the state of Arizona, this is going to be a marque race to watch come the fall. If Democrats can't win here, they probably can't hold their majority.

AVLON: All right, Kelly holding that.

Real quick, let's just do Missouri.

ENTEN: Yes, very quick. There was all this thing of Republicans. Eric Greitens, very controversial ex-governor. But at this point, if you look at the betting odds, you see Eric Schmitt, the attorney general in that state, he is the clear favorite going in. Democrats will not catch a break it looks like with Greitens being the general election nominee.

AVLON: Harry Enten, digging into the data, thank you.

ENTEN: Trying my best, buddy.

AVLON: Be good.

All right, up next, a midair mystery. So, did a co-pilot fall or jump from a small plane before it made an emergency landing in North Carolina, or was it something more nefarious? Troubling details ahead.

KEILAR: And it is decision day for Cleveland Browns quarterback DeShaun Watson, expected to learn his fate for the upcoming NFL season follow many accusations of sexual misconduct.



KEILAR: Basketball fans are remembering Hall of Famer Bill Russell, who pass away yesterday at the age of 88.

Carolyn Manno is here with the "Bleacher Report."

What a giant.

CAROLYN MANNO, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Such a giant. He had such an incredible life. I mean you think about his legacy, it was so wide- ranging. I just encourage everybody to read as much as you can about everything that he accomplished. I mean he revolutionized the game of basketball. He inspired generation of athletes as a leader on and off the court. And it's really the stuff off the court that I think he'll be remembered for most. I mean nobody won more than Russell when it came to basketball, 11 NBA titles with the Celtics, the last two coming as a player and a coach, two collegiate titles, an Olympic Gold medal. The list goes on and on.

But he was shaped by exposure to deplorable forms of racism throughout his entire life. And he was in the prime of his career during the civil rights movement. He was so outspoken on issues of social justice at a time in our history when candor on those subjects wasn't appreciated. And as such, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011 by Barack Obama. The former president saying -- I know, it's such a great shot of him bending down. Barack Obama saying, today we lost a giant. As tall as Bill Russell stood, his legacy rises far higher, both as a player and as a person.

Magic Johnson said he was his idol. Michael Jordan called him a pioneer.

Bill Russell was 88 years old at the time of his passing.

Elsewhere in sports this morning, a ruling on the punishment for DeShaun Watson's violation of the NFL's personal conduct policy is expected today. The Browns quarterback was accused by more than two dozen women of sexual assault and/or harassment. The NFL reportedly pushing an independent arbitrator to suspend him for a full season. The NFL Players Association says they will not appeal the judge's ruling and asked the NFL to do the same.

I know you guys are going to have more on that a little bit later.

But thinking so much about Bill Russell today and everything that he leaves behind.


The entire world, the entire sports landscape is just remembering how special he was.

KEILAR: What a beautiful, long life.


KEILAR: And he will so be missed.

BERMAN: Absolutely.

KEILAR: Carolyn, thank you so much for such a wonderful tribute. We appreciate it.

Joining us now for more on the looming DeShaun Watson decision is senior NFL insider at CBS Sports and host of "The Crew" and "Undefined with Josina Anderson," Josina Anderson herself.

Thank you so much for being with us.


KEILAR: So, what are we -- what do you think we should be expecting here? And what are you making of this, you know, the Players Association and representatives for him saying, we're not going to appeal this and we want the NFL too do the same. What does that tell you?

ANDERSON: Well, first and foremost, Sue Robinson, the jointly appointed hearing officer from the NFL and the NFLPA, which is what I reported yesterday, informed all relevant parties that she will deliver this decision early morning. At least that's the expectation as of right now. And that's separate from the civil litigation that we know that DeShaun Watson has been facing.

And, basically, this decision is to reveal whether she feels like DeShaun Watson has violated the NFL's conduct policy, which you know you don't have to be charged or receive a conviction to be subject to this policy. And so basically the NFL is asserting, you know, that they feel like, obviously, he has violated the conduct policy. And here's the thing. You know, they feel like if you do have conduct detrimental and if you have disrupted the public's confidence in the shield, then you should, obviously, have some sort of discipline. And the DeShaun Watson side is basically arguing for no games because they feel like they have evidence that conflicts with what the NFL purported.

Now, just to answer your question with the NFLPA last night saying that they will not, you know, they will not conflict the decision from the arbitrator. I think that's basically just to underline that they feel like this should not be the decision from a neutral arbitrator because before this process changed under the 2020 CBA, Roger Goodell was the one who was the judge and jury and they're trying to keep it just to that. And that's because, Brianna, if she determines that there is a violation, this still could go to Roger Goodell or his designee to basically change whatever she decides. But if she determines for some reason there is no violation, then her decision would be final.

AVLON: Here's what I don't get. The Cleveland Browns made him one of the wealthiest players in sports after these allegations. I mean they've been going on for 17 months, more than two dozen women. What kind of precedent does that set?

ANDERSON: Well, the Cleveland Browns said even during the introductory press conference for DeShaun Watson that they conducted their own investigation and repeated several times during that introductory press conference that the club felt comfortable enough to give him, as you mentioned, a record five-year, $230 million contract that is fully guaranteed. The first of its kind despite everything that DeShaun Watson has been facing.

But even through my reporting and things that I've been hearing from sources that side has - and not being DeShaun Watson's side, has continued to, obviously, express that DeShaun Watson, in their feeling, has done no wrongdoing and also continue to underline their optimism that a good result will come even today from the arbitrator while the NFL. And there's been, obviously, reporting out there of the sensitivity around this case from "The New York Times" that up to 66 massages occurred per a report over a 17-month period and that resulted in a civil litigation from 25 women that dropped down to 24.

KEILAR: Yes, he may deny wrongdoing but you have more than two dozen women who disagree with him. So, something to consider.

Josina, thank you so much. We'll be watching this, this morning, along with you. We appreciate you being with us.

Just an extraordinary new CNN investigation sparking protests after revealing a gold operation in Sudan to finance Russia's war in Ukraine.

AVLON: And more on our breaking news. CNN reporting that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will visit Taiwan despite China's warnings against the trip. The White House joins us ahead.



KEILAR: In a significant development overnight, the first grain shipment since Russia's invasion has left Ukraine's port city of Odessa. And this is coming a week after Turkey and the U.N. helped broker a deal to free up food exports and possibly avert a global food crisis. The Ukrainian foreign minister calls this a day of relief for the world. CNN's Jason Carroll is live in northern Ukraine.

Really can't overstate what it's going to mean for so many nations if this is able to make the difference.

JASON CARROLL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It will certainly make a difference. It's a start. But, in the same breath, you have to mention what happened in the very same region just over the weekend in that southern part of the country, Mykolaiv. The residents there, Brianna, still picking up the pieces, still assessing the damage of what happened over the weekend. The mayor there calling it some of the worst shelling he has seen since the beginning of the war.

Over the weekend, cluster bombs, shells over the city, shelling over the city. A prominent business leader was killed, Oleksiy Vadaturksy, and his wife. They were hiding in their home in the basement when the shelling started. It was not enough to save them.

In addition to that, a hotel was destroyed, a sports complex, other residential buildings. A lot of intense fighting going on down there. When it comes to that prominent business leader, the president commented about that saying -- calling him a, quote, true hero and a patriot.

In addition to what's going on in the south, taking a look at the east. Intense fighting there. The president weighing in on that issue as well, telling residence of the Donbas and the Donetsk region to evacuate, to get out now rather than wait.

As you can imagine, Brianna, there are hundreds of thousands of people there. Tens of thousands of children. And this message is going out now even though they're seeing intense fighting there. The president is saying, as bad as the situation is now, it is going to get worse, especially during the late fall and the winter when the temperatures start to drop.