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New Day Saturday
U.S. Likely To Hit Goal Of 185 Million COVID-19 Vaccinations By September; U.S. Adds Just 266,000 Jobs In April, Far Fewer Than Forecast; 22-Ton Chinese Rocket Expected To Crash Back To Earth This Weekend; Stefanik Signals She Would Only Serve In Leadership Through 2022; House GOP Expected To Oust Rep. Cheney From Leadership Next Week. Aired 8-9a ET
Aired May 08, 2021 - 8:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JACQUELINE HOWARD, CNN HEALTH REPORTER: That's why it benefits you then processed white flour. And if you don't like baking there are some dos and don'ts for buying bread from the store. Do read the ingredient list. Do buy bread with the words whole grain on the ingredient list. Don't buy bread with enriched flour and avoid anything with Os, fructose, glucose. All those Os indicate added sugar and, of course, anyone with a gluten intolerance should avoid breads altogether or follow gluten free recipes and use almond flour for instance. Happy baking.
CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: I wish a good morning. We are so grateful to have you here. Welcome to New Day.
BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: And I am Boris Sanchez, a 111 million and counting. That's how many Americans are fully vaccinated against coronavirus. What health experts say, we can push that number even higher.
PAUL: Major letdown as U.S. economy adds just 266,000 jobs, that's far short of the estimate. So, what happened?
SANCHEZ: Plus, where's it going to land? That's the million-dollar question as the world watches and waits to see what will happen when a 22-ton used Chinese rocket reenters Earth's atmosphere.
PAUL: And it's a house divided Republican Congresswoman Liz Cheney likely to be ousted from a leadership position as soon as next week, all for not going along with the big lie.
PAUL: We are so grateful to see you on this Saturday, May 8th. Thank you for waking up with us.
SANCHEZ: My pleasure to be with you Christi, as always. We are grateful to hear with us to. Coronavirus infection rates in the United States at their lowest in seven months. It's really good news. And to sign the country's aggressive vaccination strategy is working but vaccine hesitancy and the possibility of new more contagious variants continue to worry experts.
PAUL: Yes. For the first time, since the beginning of October, the U.S. has a seven-day average of 45,000 new cases a day and hospitalizations, they're falling across the country. Now experts predict, 185 million people will be vaccinated in the U.S. by September, but the CDC says it's monitoring a new coronavirus variant and vaccine makers are reworking their formulas to combat some of the more troubling strains we're seeing. CNN's Alison Kosik is with us now. So, so many different signs that hopefully the worst is behind us. But what are you hearing about the fact that we're not supposed to let our guard down just yet?
ALISON KOSIK, CNN NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Yes. It's important to not let our guard down. But it is also important to kind of, look back and see how far we've come. And since the pandemic was at a tight, it certainly feels like we've come a long way. And a lot of that has to do with the fact that millions of Americans have been vaccinated with this COVID-19 vaccine, especially from Pfizer, which was the first to get emergency use authorization. Well, now Pfizer is looking for full approval from the FDA. And if that happens, something that could happen within the next month or two that could mean that vaccine mandates by employers could become more of a possibility.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KOSIK: Pfizer announced it has begun seeking full approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration of its COVID-19 vaccine for people 16 and older. This is the first COVID-19 vaccine in the U.S. to be assessed for full approval from the FDA. Pfizer's two shot shop vaccine is currently used under emergency use authorization from the FDA. Full approval may help get people who are hesitant to get vaccinated.
DR. ASHISH JHA, DEAN, BROWN UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF PUBLIC HEALTH: For a lot of people who are on the fence, who are worried about well, this is an emergency use, should I get vaccinated, it will give them confidence. And then there are a lot of businesses who want to require that their employees be vaccinated for those businesses. It will also make them feel better about moving forward with that.
KOSIK: Nearly 111 million people are fully vaccinated, according to data published Friday by the CDC, more than 33 percent of the U.S. population. And about 45 percent of the U.S. population or more than 150 million people has received at least one dose of a COVID-19 Vaccine.
JHA: Overall, we will hit two significant milestones in our vaccination program. 150 million Americans with at least their first shot and 110 million Americans fully vaccinated. Our wartime effort is mobilized to meet the President's goal, and we are in all out implementation and execution mode.
KOSIK: For now, U.S. cases per day are falling. The U.S. averaged more than 45,109 new cases a day over the last week. It hasn't been that low since October 6th. According to Johns Hopkins University data, the U.S. will likely reach its COVID-19 vaccine goals for the summer, but vaccine hesitancy and variants could still cause a surge in the winter and influential model predicted Thursday.
KOSIK: The CDC is preparing for seasonal COVID-19 vaccine boosters in case they are needed. And with more variants spreading around the world, officials are racing to encourage Americans to get vaccinated and help the country reach herd immunity. Before vaccine resistant variants develop and reach the U.S.
DR. VIVEK MURTHY, SURGEON GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES: We've dedicated $250 million for committee organizations to provide vaccine information, help make appointments and assist with transportation to those appointments. And another 100 million will support rural health clinics and their education and outreach efforts in rural communities. On top of this, nearly 250 million will be available to states and other jurisdictions to power the next phase of their outreach efforts.
KOSIK: And as the push is on for more herd immunity here in the U.S. is something that may help, is if kids get vaccinated and emergency use authorization by the FDA for Pfizer's, a COVID-19 vaccine for kids ages 12 to 15. That authorization is expected to come next week, Boris and Christi.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PAUL: Alison Kosik we appreciate it. Thank you.
SANCHEZ: Oh, look at the economy now, as lawmakers and economists grapple with what exactly is to blame for a disappointing new jobs report. The United States economy added 266,000 jobs in April, as you can see there. It was anticipated the economy would add a million new jobs.
PAUL: That's a big change there, a big gap that was expected. Critics say it's a sign that Biden administration is going too big on spending in economic aid and the White House says it's a sign the U.S. needs to go bigger. CNN's Jasmine Wright is at the White House right now. Will test isn't it, right now for the President's economic agenda, isn't it? How is - and how is he reacting to the report?
JASMINE WRIGHT, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Well, Christi, that's right. Go bigger. That is how the White House is reacting. President Biden is using those disappointing numbers to make the case of why this country needs to invest in his multitrillion dollar economic agenda. Speaking yesterday at the White House, he had three major points.
First, he said that he really defended that coronavirus relief bill passed in March that $1.9 trillion bill that he signed, saying that it wasn't supposed to just flip a switch and bring back jobs. He said that it will take nearly a year to do that. And he said looking at the raw data. His second point was that if you looked at the raw data that it showed that the country was actually moving in the right direction, but it still had a long way to go.
And third, Christi and Boris, President Biden dismissed the concerns that extending those unemployment benefits is dampening the workforce. He said he saw no evidence of that that is an argument from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce among other groups. Instead, President Biden said that these numbers show just how far back the pandemic set the country, take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We're still digging out of an economic collapse. It cost us 22 million jobs. We say that again. It cost us 22 million jobs. When we came in, we inherited a year of profound economic crisis and mismanagement on the virus. And we proposed and what we've proposed is, is this going to work, we're going to get to 70 percent.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WRIGHT: So President Biden says that there is work to do and that work is trying to get some compromise on his multi trillion dollar infrastructure and jobs package that is going to be the goal of him and his White House coming up this week, when he has those big Oval office meetings. First, on Wednesday, he will meet with the big four congressional leaders.
And then on Thursday, he will meet with Republican Senator Shelley Moore Capito and other Republicans who ever did - that Republican counterproposal that came in at just a fraction of President Biden's initial offer. But again, the White House and officials there, hope that these dismal job numbers really provide urgency for those negotiations to look to come for some compromise. But the question going into this week is what exactly that compromise will look like? Christie, Boris.
SANCHEZ: Jasmine Wright reporting from the White House. Thank you so much. Joining us to discuss this big test for the Biden White House, CNN Political Analyst Seung Min Kim, she's also a White House Reporter for "The Washington Post" Seung Min. Thank you so much for spending time with us today. President Biden said to meet with congressional leadership early next week, as Jasmine pointed out, Mr. McConnell pledging to bring Biden's efforts on infrastructure and jobs to a screeching halt. How far are these meetings, next week are going to go in determining whether Biden ditches his efforts at bipartisanship?
SEUNG MIN KIM, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, I think it's going to give a - we're going to get a little bit better of an indication by the end of the week how much bipartisanship is possible between the Biden White House and Congressional Republicans.
KIM: Certainly, Democrats saw Mitch McConnell's "about his 100 percent focus being on stopping the Biden administration", as a sign that Republicans are not you know, good actors here that they aren't willing to compromise to accomplish major things for the country. Now, Mitch McConnell did kind of modify that a little bit. He did say he's focused on stopping it, if it's bad for the country.
But still Democrats are seeing that as a sign that perhaps bipartisanship isn't possible. I think the more interesting meeting is going to be that second meeting that Jasmine mentioned with a West Virginia Senator Shelley Moore Capito and other Republican senators who have been working on this infrastructure proposal over the recess, Senator Capito did indicate that that first offer, the one that Jasmine mentioned is a fraction of the White House proposal isn't their final offer signify and signaling that they could go a little bit higher.
But the problem still remains, among many other things, how exactly they're going to pay for this package. Because at the end of the day, the Biden White House has not embraced the types of papers that Republican senators have proposed, such as increasing the gas tax or user fees. And Republicans are not eager to do anything that touches the 2017 tax law, which is the way that the Biden White House is proposing to pay for their infrastructure package.
SANCHEZ: Yes, I hear some sound from Joe Biden, now when he was in Louisiana, talking about the question of compromise with Republicans.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: I am meeting with my Republican friends up and up in the Congress to see, number 1, how much they're willing to go for what they think are the priorities. And what compromises mean, none, I'm ready to compromise. What I'm not ready to do. I'm not ready to do nothing.
SANCHEZ: He's not ready to do nothing. Of course, the shadow looming in the background is the influence of ex-President Donald Trump over the Republican Party. All this upheaval within the party on Wednesday, it's expected that Liz Cheney, the Congresswoman from Wyoming is going to get booted from leadership, Elise Stefanik is likely to replace her. What is all this turbulence in the Republican Party spell for these negotiations moving forward? Do - does it play a role?
KIM: So no, by the way Liz is really trying not to stay involved in kind of big internal infighting of the House Republicans, especially with their leadership, I - obviously Speaker Pelosi has gotten - has kind of, made her chats a little bit pointing to the disarray within the House Republican conference.
But the White House at least has tried to not really engage focusing on their policies, their agenda, what will be really interesting is that vote were likely of Congresswoman Liz Cheney will be ousted from her leadership posts, and at least upon and be installed in her place, is the same day as that big four meeting at the White House where House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy will be participating.
It's actually one of his first meeting with President Biden, first - first major communication between those two leaders. So how much that infighting overshadows the news of the day that that President Biden is sitting down with those four leaders will be interesting to watch. But in terms of affecting the actual negotiations, the White House and Senate Republicans have really tried to keep that separate from their actual talks about a potential infrastructure proposal. SANCHEZ: Yes. Seung Min before we let you go, I am interested in getting your reaction to the story that broke last night a report that the phone records of some of your colleagues at the Washington Post were secretly obtained by the Trump Justice Department. What more does your paper know about exactly what happened?
KIM: Well, we are seeking some answers, like our executive editor said last night this is a deeply troubling action. And we're waiting for the government to provide more evidence, more information as to why this intrusion in their view was justified. As you said, this was part of my colleague's investigation or reporting into Russian interference in the 2016 election, in the early years of the Trump Administration.
And I just want to point out for your - for the viewers why this is concerning, because just the practice of seizing of phone records email records of journalists by the government is just a clearly, an unjustified way of using government resources to chill news gathering which is a practice protected by the First Amendment. So this is a really concerning development for us. And obviously, we are - you know, the post is seeking more answers from the government as to why this happened.
SANCHEZ: Yes, it has enormous implications. And we appreciate you sharing that with us this morning. So, Seung Min Kim, thank you again. As soon as next week, Representative Liz Cheney will be ousted by her colleagues as the third ranking Republican, ahead, how this isn't just about Chinese future but a battle for the soul of the Republican Party.
PAUL: Also, this hour, we're monitoring a Chinese rocket that's out of control expected to crash. No one knows where. Be sure to stay with CNN. We're following this toy for developments throughout the day. You're watching New Day, and we're glad to have you.
SANCHEZ: Don't be alarmed. Don't cower under your desk or run out and buy a helmet. But right now and out of control used Chinese rocket about 100 feet long weighing more than 20 tons is barreling toward Earth at 18,000 miles an hour.
PAUL: So that's enough to send people running, right? This is what we need to know. No one knows exactly where this thing's going to land. CNNs David Culver really takes us into what we're looking at here.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID CULVER, CNN NEWS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): What goes up must come down. The question is where scientists say they will not know the exact entry point at the 22-ton Chinese rocket until it's so close.
It's only hours away from reentry. Experts say don't panic. This is not like the Hollywood blockbusters, where the impact of something from outer space threatens to end the world. But uncontrolled space junk crashing back to Earth is a growing concern.
What's expected to hit Earth this weekend is the empty core of a rocket that's been losing orbit since its launch, much of which should burn up in the atmosphere. But some pieces could get through. Like last year, when the largest piece of space debris in 30 years landed in the Atlantic Ocean and over parts of Africa, remnants of a similar Chinese rocket.
JONATHAN MCDOWELL, ASTROPHYSICIST, HARVARD-SMITHSONIAN CENTER FOR ASTROPHYSICS: The Chinese have this new type of rocket called the Long March 5B. And unlike other big rockets, it literally space by leaving its big 20-ton core stage in orbit. American rockets, Russian rockets, European rockets don't do that.
CULVER (voice-over): Chinese state media says the risk of hitting a populated area are low and suggested may fall in international waters or burn up on reentry, a fair guess since more than 70 percent of the planet is covered in water.
The United States is tracking its course and says right now it has no plans to shoot it down. But with a cloud of 9,000 ton of rocket boosters, dead satellites and other hardware floating above, there are growing calls for more regulation of what gets sent up to space and how it returns.
GEN. WILLIAM SHELTON (RET.), FORMER COMMANDER, U.S. SPACE COMMAND: As we think about launching 1000s of objects into low Earth orbit here, we need norms of behavior so that everybody's playing off the same sheet of music, and everybody is focused on safety of flight. We just don't have that sort of thing right now.
CULVER (voice-over): Until then, all eyes are on this sky this weekend with the questions of when, where and how much debris will fall still up in the air.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CULVER (on camera): All of this, according to state media here in China, Western Media hype, as they put it, Christi and Boris. Meantime, they're moving ahead with their space program, an ambitious one at that, I got to tell you, they're putting billions of dollars into it here.
They've got plans in the next few weeks to land a rover on Mars. They're looking in the next year or so to construct a space station and have it completed by then. Then by the 2030s, they're looking to have a person put on the moon. So they are moving ahead at full speed. And it was interesting over the pandemic to notice that it really continued uninterrupted despite what this country and the rest of the world were going through.
SANCHEZ: Yes, and we're going to have a conversation about the National Security implications of China's race towards space later this morning. David Culver, we appreciate the update. Thank you. Representative Elise Stefanik, who is poised to replace Representative
Liz Cheney as the number three Republican in the house is signaling there would be a limit to her leadership. The latest from Capitol Hill, after a quick break.
SANCHEZ: House Republicans are poised to replace Representative Liz Cheney as Chair of the GOP House Conference with Representative Elise Stefanik as soon as next week. But it now appears that Stefanik would not keep that role for long.
PAUL: The New York Republican has signaled to some of her colleagues, she plans to feign leadership only through 2022. CNN Congressional Reporter Daniella Diaz is with us now. So as to phonics voting record and this is notable. It's more moderate than Chinese but this shake up and leadership. There are scientists this is not about party politics. Yes?
DANIELLA DIAZ, CNN CONGRESSIONAL REPORTER: That's exactly right. Christi, what this is really about is whether a Republican Member of Congress stands with Trump or doesn't. You know, in the last couple of days, Congresswoman Liz Cheney has really lost a lot of support and allies in the Republican conference for being so vocal about her criticism of Former President Donald Trump, you know, she refuses to go along with the big lie that a lot of her members or colleagues reiterate, that the election was stolen from Former President Donald Trump.
And she has blasted her colleagues for objecting to the election result on January 6th, and she has said she's not going to stand down on this, despite the fact that because of this, she is going to probably most likely lose her leadership position.
But the bigger picture here is that another Congresswoman Elise Stefanik, as you all mentioned, is now lining up behind Cheney to replace her, you know, she's really rebranded herself in the last couple of years as a Trump ally, even though she's more moderate in your voting record, then Cheney, who is more conservative and voted with Trump more often, but Stefanik has really spent the last couple of years especially during Donald Trump's first impeachment trial, defending the Former President.
And she has made clear in an interview yesterday that she's standing by the Former President, especially now that she's likely to replace Cheney as the GOP Conference Chair, take a listen to what she said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. ELISE STEFANIK (R-NY): We need fighters President Trump is a fighter on behalf of the American people. And voters want fighters to stand up for them. And that's what I'm committed to doing to unify the message to earn the support of my Republican colleagues and fight for hardworking American families.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DIAZ: You know, despite the fact that she's broken with Former President Donald Trump on many issues, including the border wall, tax cuts, the environment, Afghanistan, she is reiterating the fact that she is supportive of him and his message and she wants to take that to this new position that she's running for, which is the GOP Conference Chair.
But as you guys mentioned, she's signaling to her colleagues that she is likely only going to have this position for two years until the next Congress when she's going to try to get the top job on the house education and Labor Committee. So, we might be having this conversation again, depending on what happens next week. Christi, Boris.
PAUL: Good point. Daniella Diaz, thank you so much. So, my next guest says that the Trump versus Cheney fight in Wyoming, specifically.
Is a battle for the soul of the Republican people. Nick Reynolds is the State Politics and Policy Reporter for WyoFile, a Nonprofit News Organization that's based in Wyoming. Nick, it is good to have you with us. So you say, you write about Wyoming that it's a deep unwaveringly red state that loves Donald Trump, you said even the Democrats there are pro-gun. Talk to us about what is so unique about Wyoming and what it means for Liz Cheney.
NICK REYNOLDS, POLITICS & SAFETY REPORTER, WYOFILE: Sure, and I think the reasons that you just said are the reason that this might be seen by people in Washington, as sort of a proxy battle for the soul of the Republican Party. Wyoming has not gone for a Democratic presidential election since Lyndon Johnson in 64. We've not been represented by a Democrat in Congress, since Democratic Senator Gale McGee was ousted by Malcolm Wallop back in '78. And that was after 18 years in office.
The reasons are fairly obvious Wyoming's economy is based almost entirely on fossil fuels. They fund their schools, they keep government open, and they help provide good well paying jobs in communities that don't necessarily have a strong tax base on their own. Democrats also tend to favor policies counter to fossil fuel interests. And as such, you often see lopsided federal races here. Plus, we have to bear in mind, roughly half the stage land area is owned by the federal government, which also creates a really interesting dynamic here.
However, its politics at the state level are much more nuanced than that. Despite that reliance on fossil fuels, there's a strong conservation history here. And over the years, it's conservativism has been defined by a more strong libertarian social street in some regards. Plus, we have to keep in mind Wyoming's population at roughly 579,000 people smaller than that of roughly three dozen cities across the United States. And that population is spread out over a land area about 20 times the size of Connecticut. So you're dealing with a lot of small communities here.
Most of the towns over 5000 people are about one or two hours apart from one another. And they're often tight knit, often with very unique interests based off of what employers are there. So what the religious customs are, to how well establish the families are in the community. And yes, that's true outcomes over the state's overall history.
PAUL: So my question to you is, as Daniel - as Daniella was pointing out, Liz Cheney, traditional conservative, she voted in line with President Trump about 80 percent of the time. That's according to heritage action for America. Now compare that to Representative Stefanik. She voted in line with Trump only 48 percent of the time. So is there a sense that the Representative Cheney is simply being punished for not going along with the President's big lie?
REYNOLDS: Yes, I mean, it's hard to deny that this isn't about Trump. You know, it's the common talking point here is that close to three quarters of the state voted for him in the last election and by voting to impeach him, you're going against the will of all of those voters. You know, as I write in that op-ed, while the nation saw depressed voter turnout in 2016, Wyoming actually set a record for voter turnout. And four years later, that record was shattered, as voters rush to the polls to support President Trump.
And while polling data showed by the morning console showed Wyoming to be Trump's strongest day, throughout this presidency, the same polls have shown President Joe Biden to be more unpopular here than any other state. And as a result, she was censured by the State GOP more than a dozen county level Republican groups. And yes, it's certainly elicited a visceral reaction around here that I think is deeper than policy. She is extremely conservative.
PAUL: So I want to listen with you two Former Defense Secretary and U.S. Senator, Chuck Hagel, when he talked about the consequences of President Trump's claim that that he is still the leader of the party right now, let's listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHUCK HAGEL, FORMER GOP SENATOR: The party is always bigger than an individual. I don't care who the President is. And he's not accepting Mr. Trump's not accepting that. And that is going to continue to divide the party. And divide the party in a very corrosive way because it is about truth. It is about being honest. It is about the core values of our country of what a party should represent. So I think it's a pretty tough future the Republicans have, especially if they vote out Liz Cheney.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PAUL: So what is the consequence to Wyoming, to Republicans across the country, if Representative Cheney's expunged?
REYNOLDS: Well, I think that's a conversation that's still taking place here as it is in Washington, many long standing Republicans in this state, some have been involved in the state's politics for years have told me that they feel like they're being forced out of the party as it stands today.
And it's a really interesting thing to see, when you consider that on policy. Many of them are largely in agreement with the more populist wave that is some kind of insane over the years of the Trump presidency.
However, I do recall speaking with one woman recently about Trump and the idea of that party was this cult of personality that surrounded them and she stopped me and said that she wasn't just following Trump. It was more like she supported them because he was saying things that.
"That she's been thinking for years" and when you work from that premise, you have to be in mind that Trump isn't began with Trump and I don't necessarily think it did what he sees upon was always there in some fashion and grew to the point in 2016, where it became a winning coalition that holds true today.
You don't have to be, I don't remember Oregon's lost the House, Senate and the White House. That's true, but not by much. And whether they can build on that and whether the movement topped out in 2016. I think that's the debate we're having as a country right now, and especially in Wyoming.
PAUL: Yes, very interesting. Nick Reynolds, it was good to have you here. Thank you for being with us.
REYNOLDS: Hey, good to be with you.
SANCHEZ: We're following some breaking news. Right now out of Jerusalem. There are reports of more than 200 people hurt after clashes between Israeli Police and Palestinians at one of Islamic holiest sites. More on this after a quick break.
SANCHEZ: We're following breaking news out of Jerusalem this morning. And aid organization says that more than 200 people have been injured at a mosque there. Israeli police in riot gear clashed with Palestinians following evening prayers. Several people were hit with rubber bullets. And you can see stun grenades going off as police tried to clear that area.
PAUL: It is a mess. CNN's Hadas Gold has more on what started this.
HADAS GOLD, CNN NEWS CORRESPONDENT: One of the most significant evenings of tension that Jerusalem has seen in several years. According to the Palestinian Red Crescent, more than 200 people were injured and 80 of them taken to hospital after clashes on the Al-Aqsa compound which is also known as the Temple Mount to Jews. Now some Palestinians say that the clashes began when Police prevented large group of worshippers from entering the Al-Aqsa mosque and some of them began pushing up against the police barricades.
Police say that some of the Palestinians began throwing objects like rocks at them, they've responded with stun grenades and rubber balls the Palestinian Red Crescent saying that many of the injuries are from those rubber bullets. The police saying that 17 of their officers were injured, the Imam at one point of the mosque calling for everybody to calm down but we're seeing some really dramatic video of stun grenades being fired including one of which seems to have even landed within the Al-Aqsa Mosque which is the building with the black roof, just over my shoulder.
But this is not happening in a vacuum, tensions have been boiling in Jerusalem for several weeks, there were clashes at the Damascus Gate entrance to the Old City of Jerusalem, the police were preventing Palestinians from congregating in the plaza outside of the gate, a popular thing to do especially during Ramadan, during one of those evenings of clashes. There was a march of several 100 Jewish extremists who at one point were chanting death to Arabs that inflame tensions quite a bit. And there have been one of incidents of violence Palestinian on Israeli, Israeli on Palestinian that we're seeing in the city as well.
But one of the reasons that last night, especially grew tense was because of the possible eviction of several families, Palestinian families in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of Jerusalem. Now the Israeli foreign ministry is responding to these events saying that the Palestinian Authority and the Palestinian terror groups are presenting a real estate dispute referring to the Sheikh Jarrah situation between private parties as a nationalistic to cause in order to incite violence in Jerusalem. There have been an incoming of statements of worry from various countries and international organizations.
The U.S. State Department putting out a statement saying that there's no excuse for violence. But such bloodshed is especially disturbing now coming as it does on the last days of Ramadan, the State Department's calling on Israeli and Palestinian officials to act decisively to deescalate the tensions and bring a halt to the violence. But there is growing concern that things will only get worse because Saturday evening is one of the holiest nights of Ramadan.
And then Monday is what's known as Jerusalem dates, the day that Israelis mark the day that Israel took control of the Western Wall in the Old City and Monday, we may also actually see a decision from the Supreme Court on that part on those possible evictions of the Palestinian families in Sheikh Jarrah. So a confluence of events, many words here that this city that has already seen tensions boiling over that things could potentially get worse, Hadas Cold, CNN, Jerusalem.
PAUL: Hadas, thank you so much. So I know that as we head into summer, you're thinking about traveling, numbers are up there people are preparing for more normal looking summer here. Yes, it's a positive sign, but it can cause anxiety, how to overcome fears that you may have about traveling and coping with all of the emotions that we have right now.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) [08:45:00]
SANCHEZ: Ever since most of the world shut down because of the COVID 19 pandemic, we've been looking forward to the day, when we can finally get back to normal. It looks like a day is almost here. But not everyone is ready for it. From concerns about whether your favorite vacation destination is safe to go back to, to wondering how to get there safely in the first place. A lot of people are on edge about the world reopening.
For people who were diagnosed with anxiety before the pandemic, the worries can be debilitating. According to data from the National Center for Health Statistics, and December 2019, 8.6 percent of adults reported symptoms of anxiety. But now look at this, for the latest period available March 17th through the 29th 30 percent of adults reported symptoms.
My next guest says there are ways to control these fears about getting back out into the world. Lily Brown is an Associate Professor at the University of Pennsylvania and the Director of the School Center for the Treatment and Study of Anxiety. Lily thanks so much for joining us this morning. Help us understand reentry anxiety, what it means, how it affects so many people and how it's different from just general concerns about COVID-19.
LILY BROWN, DIRECTOR UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA CENTER FOR THE TREATMENT & STUDY OF ANXIETY: Certainly, so this has been a time for many people where we've become out of practice with being in normal social circumstances. And that has made a lot of people feel really nervous about getting back into the world and back into their normal experiences including travel.
BROWN: You know, for many people Travel has always been an anxiety provoking sort of thing. But when you haven't done it for over a year, it becomes even more anxiety provoking. And so we have lots of tips for helping people to think about strategies to gradually enter into those situations to reduce anxiety over time and to make it easier.
SANCHEZ: Yes, that gradual reentry is generally speaking, what you're talking about is exposure therapy, right? Like taking in small doses of these events that might stress you out and working your way up. So how would you recommend that someone apply that to reentry anxiety?
BROWN: Yes, great question. The best thing to do is to think about really starting small, think about what are your core fears about getting out and about in the world, again? Is it about fears of negative evaluation from other people or fears of being judged by other people? If that's the case, can you practice more intimate social gatherings, something like grabbing a coffee with a person who you don't know very well?
And then can you think about working your way up to, you know, larger social networks and larger gatherings with people within reason? The best tip with exposure therapy is to think about breaking down your big fears into small, digestible bite sized pieces, so that you can slowly approach those fears to make it easier. The second thing, I like for people to think about is where are your values at now compared to where they were at before the pandemic? You know are there things that you care about now that you didn't used to care about?
The things that you used to work toward, are they still valuable to you? Or have you had a shift in priorities since the Pandemic, that's a common thing that we're noticing among people coming to our center is that this is provided a time for reevaluation about what they care about and what they want to work toward?
SANCHEZ: Definitely, it's not just anxiety. It's also cases of depression that have surged during the pandemic. And understandably, there's a risk, though, of people not getting the professional help that they need for any number of reasons. So how would you counsel someone who might be suffering, but is hesitant to get help or isn't really sure if they even need it?
BROWN: Yes, most of us have struggled with some amount of anxiety or depression during this pandemic. And so I'm constantly asked, how do I know if it's at the level where I really need professional support.
So the first thing I think about is if you're wondering whether professional support might be helpful, go ahead and reach out and, you know, try and get in with a therapist now rather than wait, number 1, because waitlist have been through the roof right now. It's nothing like we've seen before, in terms of the number of people who are reaching out to seek therapy.
And that's really led to some problematic shortages of availability for therapists. But there has been one area where we've seen expanded access, which is in the format of telehealth, so for people who are working on building up the courage to get out of their home. Now more than ever, it's easier to get access to therapy through your computer. And there are a number of providers who were offering that as their core service at this point during the pandemic.
There are a number of referral sources that you can turn to, one being the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapy. They have a searchable directory for folks to find providers in your local zip code that offer cognitive behavioral therapy, which is really a form of exposure therapy.
SANCHEZ: Excellent. Lily Brown, we appreciate you sharing your insight on this important topic. Thanks so much.
BROWN: Thanks for having me.
SANCHEZ: And a quick note for everyone at home, we put a list of mental health resources on our firstname.lastname@example.org/impact. So if you need it, it's there.
PAUL: Yes, I want to make sure that you've taken care of there. So we do have a quick programming note for you. Don't forget to join Don Lemon for a look at Marvin Gaye's groundbreaking album "What's Going On" still powerful. Now 50 years after its release a CNN's Special what's going on Marvin Gaye's anthem for the ages. It premieres tomorrow at 8:00 p.m. Here's a clip for you.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Marvin Gaye's groundbreaking "What's Going On".
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was the first time that I understood poetry.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This one and Gray's out ever made.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: His melodies were like a voice of Christ.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He created something that lasts years later.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 50 years later. Why is it an anthem for a new generation?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This prophecy man.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you think Marvin would think about what's going on?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: CNN Special Report, "What's Going On" Marvin Gaye's Anthem for the ages tomorrow at 8:00.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: Really a transcendent piece of art. And when you see those images, you're reminded that history doesn't stop. We're still struggling with so many of those issues that Marvin was talking.
PAUL: Yes, exactly. And I think that's why it's so appropriate right now. I think everybody - we acknowledge learn a lot by watching it. No doubt for us. Boris, good to see you this morning. He's not done yet.
SANCHEZ: Oh, we're not, we're going to be back. That's it for New Day, but we're going to be back in an hour, after smoke off.
PAUL: Yes, right now it's time for you.
MICHAEL SMERCONISH, CNN ANCHOR: Take this job and shove it. I'm Michael Smerconish in Philadelphia.