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U.K. PM Scraps Tax Cut; Democrats Lag Among Black Voters; Watt Plays After Heart Procedure; Bruce Parkman is Interviewed about Sports Concussions. Aired 6:30-7a ET

Aired October 03, 2022 - 06:30   ET




ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN ANCHOR: This morning, the British government is reversing plans to scrap its highest income tax rate. This after a major backlash. The proposed highly controversial tax cuts would have slashed the top income tax rate to 40 percent from 45 percent. It was part of a proposed economic package that triggered a chaotic week for Britain's markets. U.K. stocks and bonds plunged while the pound sank to a record low against the U.S. dollar.

So, what could this mean for the rest of the world? To answer that question, let's bring in CNN chief business correspondent Christine Romans.

Christine, this was quite the reversal.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Look, and this was total turmoil in U.K. markets, seen as a flashing warning sign for other developed nations in their fights against inflation. You saw that pound showing some stability this morning. It has edged up after this U-turn, roughly around the same level it was before this new British government stimulus plan, a plan that took the pound to the lowest levels in almost four decades there. The pound had already been hammered by weak economic data, a surging dollar and then this disastrous reception to the new party government agenda here.

Sterling dollar, as you know, a super important - the sterling dollar is - there it is - sterling dollar is really important for the world. As you know, for U.S. business travelers and tourists, it means, you know, more for your dollar visiting the U.K. But for big U.S. companies operating there, it hurts their sales abroad. It is the third, by the way, the third most heavily traded currency pair.

Now, the chaos spreading through the bond markets as well. U.K. government bond yields surging. A sign of distress. International investors voting against big, unfunded tax cuts.

So, what's in the plan that riled everybody up so much here? Frankly, to cut taxes for business, allow higher banker bonuses and stimulate the economy with the biggest tax cuts in 50 years, at the same time the central bank is raising interest rates to try to cool down inflation, working really at cross purposes here. Former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers told "Bloomberg News" this. He

said, he sees echoes of 2007 in Britain's economic crisis. When there are tremors, there aren't always earthquake, but there aren't earthquakes without tremors. And there are certainly tremors.

Around the world, inflation is issue number one for governments and central banks. Here in the U.S., we've already seen these interest rate hikes, five times this year. History with a gigantic three hikes in a row making borrowing costs more expensive for everything. For a mortgage, on credit cards, buying a car. And that's on purpose. The Fed is trying to cool robust consumer demand to get inflation under control.

The big question, can they do it without throwing the U.S. economy into a recession? Nobody knows for sure. But I can tell you, we have seen the effects of it. The uncertainty is kryptonite for markets. Stocks tumbled in September. Bear markets are everywhere, guys. The Dow and the S&P 500 have erased all of their gains going back to late 2020. The S&P 500 falling for three quarters in a row. That hasn't happened since 2008.

Buckle up for another very busy calendar, guys.


This week ahead -- there's going to be a lot of news. We're looking for any evidence the Fed's medicine is working. And Friday's jobs report -- we end the week with Friday's jobs report taking on outsized importance, Alex.

MARQUARDT: Buckle up indeed. That new British government off to a very rocky start.

ROMANS: Absolutely.

MARQUARDT: Christine Romans, thank you so much for that. Appreciate it.

We do have new data this morning on Democrats losing some support among a key voting group. Harry Enten will be here to break down the numbers.

BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN ANCHOR: And soon opening statements will get underway in the sedition trial against five members of the Oath Keepers.


KEILAR: New data is now showing warning signs for Democrats ahead of the midterms. A key voting group that is considered reliably Democratic does not seem as solidly blue as it once was.

CNN's senior data reporter Harry Enten is joining us now.

So, Harry, as we move into the midterms here, you say that we're actually seeing some real movement among a core Democratic group. HARRY ENTEN, CNN SENIOR DATA REPORTER: Yes, so, take a look here. This

is black voters' electoral preferences in pre-election poling. Look, black voters are the part - the core part of the Democratic Party.


And as you can see here in the race for Congress, look, they're still getting 74 percent support in the pre-election polling right now. But compare that to the final polling for 2020 president and 2018 Congress. Back in 2020 it was 84 percent, 85 percent in 2018. So, you're clearly seeing right here that there is less support for Democratic candidates for Congress among African Americans.

And you can look at the Republican column as well and you can see that 12 percent, not exactly high, but that's actually the high water mark. It was 9 percent in 2020, 9 percent in 2018. So, basically, what was about a 75, 76 point margin is now down in the low 60s.

So, look, Democrats still well ahead with African Americans. But, in a game in which you're trying to drive up margins, the margin among African Americans for Democrats is clearly down.

KEILAR: So, what's going on here? What's the cause of this?

ENTEN: You know, there's a lot of things that could be going on. And the truth of the matter is, when you look across polling, it's actually kind of hard to build up a large enough sample size to really dig in a lot of questions. But I think that this kind of gets at the core part of it.

Take a look at Joe Biden's approval rating among black adults. If you go back to January to June of 2021, look how high it was. It was 87 percent, 87 percent, basically matching what he got in the 2020 election. But look at that approval rating now, in August and September of 2022, it's all the way down to 64 percent.

Now, obviously, Joe Biden's approval rating with all Americans is down, but it's not down by anywhere near this amount. This 23 point drop among all Americans. It's only down about 10 to 15 points. So, there is a disproportionate drop in Joe Biden's approval ratings among African Americans. And I think that's kind of driving why you're seeing Democrats running for Congress, getting a significantly lower margin than we're used to seeing.

KEILAR: Yes, that is huge. That is a huge drop there.

What about - are we -- are there any states where this might have more of an effect than other places?

ENTEN: Yes, so, you know, if we're looking at sort of the battleground states, the states with close Senate or governor races in 2022, look at the black share of the electorate. These are the states where it makes up a significant portion. Georgia, the big one, look at that, 33 percent. North carolina, 23 percent. There's a key gubernatorial race there. Florida governor and a Senate race there, 14 percent. Ohio, 11 percent. Pennsylvania, 10 percent, obviously a key gubernatorial and Senate race there. And in Nevada, where you might say, OK, that's a state with a large Hispanic population, there's actually also a large African American population as well.

So, if you look across the polling which are - or you're looking across the electoral map, you're clearly seeing that there are a lot of places where this black voter movement could, in fact, have a significant thing that's going on.

And the other thing I'll point out, you know, you're talking about Georgia, right? This, I think, is key. You know, Stacey Abrams, the Democrat who's basically running there -- that should be a D -- there we go. If you're looking at - if you're looking at Georgia here, what should see, as you can see, if you compare the 2022 polling to 2018, Brian Kemp is clearly picking up ground overall, six points - his lead is six points larger. But among African American voters, look at that, Stacey Abrams' lead is actually down from 79 points in the final 2018 polling to 67 points now. So, in Georgia, this key state where black voters make up such a large portion of the electorate, you're seeing, again, more movement among black voters away from the Democratic Party than you're seeing among voters overall.

KEILAR: And then, lastly, black voters aren't the only group, right, that's considered usually Democratic reliably where Democrats seem to be struggling with them.

ENTEN: That's exactly right. So, this seems to be a problem across a lot of voter - a lot of groups that are sort of umbrellaed under voters of color. Look at Hispanic voters' choice for Congress, Democrats and Republicans. Look in September of 2022, Democrats at 54 percent. That's the same as it was in October of 2020, but it's down significantly from 2018 -- November of 2018 when it was 60 percent. And look at among Republicans. Look at the support, 33 percent now. That is the high water mark. That margin and the choice for Congress, look at that, was 34 points back in November of 2018, then it became 26 points and now, get that, it's just 21 points.

KEILAR: Wow, that is something. Harry, thank you so much for walking us through all those numbers.

ENTEN: Thank you.

KEILAR: The NFL announcing plans to modify its concussion protocols as it reviews the handling of Tua's apparent head injury.

MARQUARDT: Plus, something fishy happened at a tournament in Ohio. Ahead, the controversy that is rocking the competitive fishing world.

We'll be right back.



MARQUARDT: NFL Cardinal's star JJ Watt got very emotional after playing just days after a heart procedure.

CNN's Andy Scholes has more in the "Bleacher Report."



So, yes, a very scary week for JJ Watt ended with him playing and helping lead the Cardinals to a win over the Panthers. The three-time defensive player of the year revealing he had a heart procedure midweek after finding he had a - finding out he had an issue. Before the game Watt tweeting that his heart went into an irregular rhythm on Wednesday and then doctors had to shock it back on Thursday. And while fighting back tears, Watt opened up to reporters about what the week was like.


JJ WATT, ARIZONA CARDINALS DEFENSIVE END: For months we've been looking at ultrasounds of my baby boy. And they're all extremely happy. And then Thursday we were looking at an ultrasound of my heart. It was - it was very tough. It's been - it's been a week. It's been a week.


SCHOLES: Now, concussions were certainly in the forefront in week four after what happened to Tua Tagovailoa. The Players Association firing the unaffiliate neuro trauma consultant that was involved in clearing Tua to return to the Bills' game a week ago. And according to reports, several mistakes were made when Tua was evaluated. The NFL is still investigating and is expected to interview Tua this week.

Now, the NFL and the NFLPA, in the meantime, putting out a joint statement over the weekend saying that they will be making it a rule now that if any player shows gross motor instability and stumble like Tua did against the Bills, it's not going to be a judgment call anymore. That player will be removed from the game. We saw two more quarterbacks leave games yesterday with head injuries.


Giants' quarterback Tyrod Taylor taking a huge blow to the head. He left the game with the Bears with a concussion.

The Patriots, meanwhile, losing backup Brian Hoyer as well. He took a big hit on this sack. His head went -- hit the turf. He did not return after that, as the Patriots lost in overtime to the Packers, 27-24.

And, Alex, you know, the NFL has not put out an official rule yet. They're still working on the wording. But the expectation was told to all of the teams what is expected moving forward when it comes to a player and head injuries.

MARQUARDT: Yes, those are some tough plays to watch.

Andy Scholes, thank you so much for that.

SCHOLES: All right.

KEILAR: I want to bring in Bruce Parkman. His son played football for years. He suffered concussions. And in 2020 he died by suicide at just 17 years old. Bruce started a foundation in his name called the Mac Parkman Foundation for Adolescent Concussive Trauma.

Thank you so much, Bruce, for joining us today.

I know that you've watched with an alarm that hits you particularly personally. What was it like when you saw Tua's fencing response following that second hit on Thursday? What do you make of all of this?


I was horrified. I mean a lot of folks do not understand that that young man could have died on national TV that day from what's called second impact syndrome. And the fact that he was allowed to play so soon after another so-called concussion is just a -- it's -- it shows that these -- the NFL is just not respecting the mental health, the lives, nor the brain health of their players.

KEILAR: So, you know, we all watched what happened on the Sunday game and how he stumbled. And then it was made as if it was a back injury or that was really what was - what was -- we were told, right, there was a back injury but it wasn't a concussive protocol that he was under. The neurotrauma consultant has now been fired, which seems to be an admission of a problem with all of that. Is that enough in your mind?

PARKMAN: No, ma'am. I mean the admission only goes -- it doesn't even touch the problems here that, number one, the players are not incentivized to be honest about their concussive syndromes because they want to play. And part of the reason for that is that there's really no disability net for the NFL. If you get harmed to the point where you have to leave the game, your career is over. And what do you have to fall back on? So your natural instinct as a player is to say, I'm not dizzy, I don't feel any pain, I don't have a headache. They can't prove that.

So, the NFL needs to adjust its protocols. Right now those protocols do not test the parts of the brain that are actually damaged. So, between the players not being incentivized because they - I mean to be honest, the baseline test right now, a lot of players don't even do very well on them so they -- intentionally so that when they're tested after an acute concussive incident, they can pass the test and get back on the field. The NFL needs to adjust its priorities. And those players' mental health and their brain health need to come way ahead of winning and money.

KEILAR: I do think, Bruce, that people know a lot more now about concussions. We saw that by some of the outrage that happened just by the fact that Tua was on the field again on Thursday. People know more about the ramifications of multiple concussions. What do you want fans and parents to know? You're calming on the NFL.

What do you want fans and parents to know?

PARKMAN: I want fans and parents to know that your kid's future is at risk every time they put on a helmet. This is not about concussions, this is about sub concussions. The hundreds, if not thousands of blows that your child's developing brain will take when they play sports at a young age. Youth contact sports has devastated the brains and mental well-being of hundreds of thousands, if not millions of kids right now who are affected as adults and as children with mental health issues, mental health disorders. You look at NFL greats like Junior Seau, Vincent Jackson, Dwight Evans, that are no longer here.

This is what parents need to understand. When your kid -- Tua has played football for 16 years. That's an enormous amount of sub concussive trauma that impacts the brain and has been shown by science, research and logic, and we put it all in this book, that leads to brain damage, that results in mental illness.

My son ran off a cliff, an 80 foot cliff, absolutely stone cold sober. He was in pain. He was depressed and schizophrenic all because he wanted to play contact sports. My son is not here. Hundreds of other children are not here. Our NFL players are hurting because we treat concussions like headaches. They're brain injuries. And this needs to stop. The NFL needs to endorse flag football to the age of 14. All the other contact sports need to do the same.


We are - we have harmed and are harming generations and the future of this country by allowing these kids and their exposed brains to be exposed to sub concussive trauma. It's just way too much.

KEILAR: Bruce, you are - your son was beautiful and your pain is palpable and we so appreciate you joining us to talk about what this means.

Bruce Parkman, thank you.

PARKMAN: Thank you, Brianna. You have a great day. God bless.

KEILAR: Concerns growing this morning over Vladimir Putin's explicit threats to use a nuclear weapon. We'll have new reporting ahead.

MARQUARDT: Plus, we're just getting in tapes of Maggie Haberman's interview with Donald Trump for her new book. And the topics including the Mar-a-Lago documents as well as January 6th. We'll have that.

Stand by.



KEILAR: Desperation and heartache this morning in Florida. It is Monday, October 3rd.