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New Day Saturday

New Videos Document Ronald Greene's Death In Police Custody; Bill To Set Up January 6 Commission Likely Doomed In Senate; Biden Urged To Ditch GOP Talks As Key Initiatives Stall In Congress; U.N. Sending $22.5 Million In Humanitarian Aid To Gaza; Pace Of Daily Vaccinations Across U.S. Slows; Subtropical Storm Ana Forms In The Atlantic. Aired 7-8a ET

Aired May 22, 2021 - 07:00   ET




UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wow, that made me tear up.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She was the voice for America that we all wanted to give him a serenade. How cool is that?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And so, it has come to this. I am one of the lucky people in the world. I found something I always wanted to do and I have enjoyed every single minute of it.

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: It is emotional, and his retirement set off a late night war. You will not want to miss that. "THE STORY OF LATE NIGHT" airing tomorrow at 9:00 pm right here on CNN. The next hour of NEW DAY starts right now.

Good morning, and welcome to your NEW DAY. I'm Boris Sanchez.

CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Christi Paul. Good morning, Boris. We have new video that we need to show you. It's released by the Louisiana State Police, and it shows really disturbing moments just before Ronald Greene died while in the custody of state troopers, also hear from Greene's mother, and what she expects to see in terms of justice for her son's death at this point.

SANCHEZ: Plus, Senate Republicans looking to stop a bipartisan commission into the January 6th attack before it can even get started. And of course, how long should we expect that fragile ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, the whole.

SANCHEZ: We are thrilled that you're with us this Saturday, May 22nd. Good morning and welcome to NEW DAY.

PAUL: Absolutely. We're always grateful to have your company. So, we do want to give you a warning here because for the first time, we're seeing all of the videos. Louisiana State police say they have showing that horrific final moment of Ronald Greene's life. This is of course happening two years after his death in their custody. SANCHEZ: Yes, and I want to echo Christi these videos are incredibly disturbing and hard to watch. But they are our clearest look yet at how troopers tased kicked and dragged green, even as he's heard apologizing, saying that he's scared and calling out to Jesus at different points of the brutal encounter. Also, for the first time, we hear radio transmissions from the proceeding police chase. We want to play one of those clips now from the final moments as police are going after Ronald Greene.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 46, we got to do something. He's going to kill somebody. He's intentionally driving on the wrong side of the road.


SANCHEZ: At no point in any of the videos do we see images of Greene's car as he's fleeing from police in all nine body and dash cam videos were released last night but that's only after clips began to leak to the news media beginning with the Associated Press.

PAUL: Green's family says there was an attempt to cover up what happened and now they want consequences calling what they witnessed in these videos torture.

SANCHEZ: CNN's Randi Kaye has a deeper look at what the videos and an autopsy also obtained by CNN reveal. Again, we want to warn you the images and the video you're about to see are very graphic.


RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The new video obtained by CNN is 30 minutes long and offers a different view from a Louisiana State Trooper's body camera than the video obtained earlier by the A.P. It shows Ronald Greene following a high speed chase near Monroe, Louisiana, on the ground face down and struggling to turn over.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Don't you turn over. Don't you turn over. Lay on your belly. Lay on your belly.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Like I told you to do. You understand.

GREENE: Yes, sir.

KAYE: Greene apologizes and politely calls the officer, sir, even as they continue to berate him. The video shows Greene's leg shackled and his hands cuffed behind his back when he cries out in pain, even calling on the Lord Jesus, the officers continue to restrain him.

GREENE: Oh, Lord Jesus!

KAYE: Louisiana State Police kept this video under wraps for two years. Greene's arrest and subsequent death occurred back in May 2019. This is what the family says Louisiana State Police initially told them happened.

DINELLE HARDIN, RONALD GREENE'S SISTER: That he was in a car accident and that he, he hit his head on the stairwell and that's how he died.

KAYE: The family says police initially made no mention to them of the arrest or use of force, now revealed on the body camera videos. Another police report said Greene was taken into custody after resisting arrest and his struggle with troopers and that he died on the way to the hospital. His family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit.

HARDIN: This has been a cover up from day one. They were out to kill him. He had no chance of living.


KAYE: In the video, it's not clear if Greene's offered medical attention as he lay on the ground, moaning and gurgling.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was going to sit him up but I didn't want him spitting blood all over us.

KAYE: At one point on the new video, a medical technician arrives and is clearly concerned.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He's not getting enough air.

KAYE: And when it was over in previously released video obtained by the A.P., one trooper can be heard on his body camera audio boasting about beating Greene.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I beat the ever-living (BLEEP) out of him. Choked him and everything else trying to get him under control. He's spitting blood everywhere and then all of a sudden, he just went limp. Yes, I thought he was dead.

KAYE: CNN has also obtained the autopsy report. It lists Greene's cause of death as cocaine-induced agitated delirium, complicated by motor vehicle collision, physical struggle, inflicted head injury, and restraint. According to the autopsy, injuries included a fracture of the sternum or breastbone, and a torn aorta, the body's main artery. The autopsy notes that Greene had alcohol and a significant level of cocaine in his system. These post-mortem photos of green released on the NAACP Baton Rouge Facebook page, show the extent of his injuries and the autopsy notes lacerations of the head inconsistent with motor vehicle collision injury. Instead finding these injuries are most consistent with multiple impact sites from a blunt object. Randi Kaye, CNN, Palm Beach County, Florida.


SANCHEZ: Randi Kaye, thank you for that report. Ronald Greene's mother says that she is not going to stop until she gets justice for her son. She spoke with CNN's Anderson Cooper last night and she did not mince words. She believes police killed her son and then attempted to cover up what happened. Listen to this. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MONA HARDIN, RONALD GREENE'S MOTHER: It's, it's unbelievable. This is two years, this is two years. It's been a battle from the moment we heard of it. That whole all of last year, it all the year before it's a, it's a it's absolutely degrading. It's shameful for the state of Louisiana. And all those who run that state. We were told the very beginning. You got to have a long, this is going to be a long battle for you because the state troopers run the state of Louisiana, not the government. It's the state troopers.

A cover up from the very beginning. From the top down. It's organized crime within the state of Louisiana, especially through death.

ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST: Ms. Hardin, do you believe that there will be justice for your son?

M. HARDIN: Oh, yes. Oh, yes. Oh, yes. My strength is my son, my strength are my children, and Ronnie will forever be with us in spite of what they did to him and the horrific way he died. He was he was he was such a happy guy. He, he survived so much. And I just, I just hate that. The way he loved people. He was killed at the hands of people who hated the hell out of him. And kill them because of that, just for the sheer pleasure because they, they get away with it.

They weren't even worried about repercussions. They weren't even worried about because God knows what they got away with before Ronnie. And the fact that these guys was on payroll and still on there, you know, since Ronnie, it says a lot, it says a lot, it is it's so gut wrenching. I don't know if I'll ever be able to see the complete videos because it's hard to sleep with all I have seen last year, and I can say is the state of Louisiana and all the damn folks that run it are continued to let my family suffer.

And I'm -- there's no words for how mad I am. I'm disgusted. And the fact that they still hold seats in there and they continue to let this, to let this run its course and they want to just let it die away. Even those that retired, you know because they didn't want to face what they did. Those who have retired those who had died. You know, they're still part of it. It's disgusting. And, and there's, there's, there's no rationalizing the murder. It's quite unfair.

COOPER: And Ms. Hardin, before I let you go If you could just for folks who this is all they know of your son that this is all they have heard of him. That's the only time they've heard his voice. Can you just tell us a little bit about your son?


M. HARDIN: You know. Ronnie was a survivor. Ronnie -- he did so much in life, he wanted to do so much in life. I hate that his to do list, his checklist was left incomplete so much, and through him we hope to continue his love with the kids his love with his daughter, the family, his friends. It was undying. It was it was unstoppable. Even folks that he didn't get along with, he went back to, to speak to say hi there. There was no bridges burned. You know, he always went back and, and everyone out there who knows Ronnie, knows what I'm talking about. He's, he's someone that, that it's, it's horrific what they did to him. It's just horrific. We'll never get over this. He was such a good guy.


SANCHEZ: They will never get over what happened. We're going to hear more from Ronald Greene's family. Be sure to stay with new day because in the next hour, we're going to be speaking to his brother-in-law as well as the family's attorney. Meantime, stuck in the Senate. The January 6th commission bill needs the approval of 10 GOP members in the Senate to pass that is looking more and more unlikely. So, will the Biden administration get the bipartisanship, bipartisanship it needs? We'll take you live to Capitol Hill next.

PAUL: Also, we have a first named storm of the 2021 hurricane season. We're starting out with Allison Chinchar is with the snatch detailing what's expected to be a very active season.



SANCHEZ: We're just about 15 minutes past the hour. They were the targets of a mob on January 6th, but yet this coming week, Republican senators are set to sync a bill that will create a bipartisan commission to investigate the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. The bill would need support from at least 10 Republican Senators to pass.

PAUL: Well, and at least six have already announced they oppose it including North Carolina's Richard Burr, who is poised to filibuster the matter, that's blocking even debate on it. CNN Congressional Reporter Daniella Diaz is with us. Daniella, always good to see you this morning. So, the Commission's just one of the pressing issues we know getting stalled in the Senate. Talk to us about what's happening.

DANIELLA DIAZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Christi and Boris, it's not just this 911 style commission to investigate the January 6th insurrection that has stalled in the Senate. It's practically dead on arrival, honestly. But there's a lot of pieces of legislation that have already passed the house and are sitting in the senate as Democrats tried to negotiate with Republicans on something that can pass this 60 vote threshold that is needed to break any filibuster on any pieces of this legislation.

So, let's start with this 9/11 style Commission on the insurrection. You know, it passed the house with 35 House Republicans voting in favor of it, which is a notable number. But now it's dead on arrival in the Senate, as many Republicans who even voted to convict Donald Trump in his second impeachment trial have come out and say that they do not support this, namely, Senator Richard Burr, who you guys just mentioned, who is actually going to who has been working behind the scenes to convince other Senate Republicans not to support this legislation.

And then there's also police reform, you know, this bipartisan group of negotiators, Senator Tim Scott, a Republican from South Carolina; Congresswoman Karen Bass, a Democrat from California, and Senator Cory Booker from New Jersey Democrat, they've been working behind the scenes these last couple of weeks to try to reach a deal by May 25th. That's this self-imposed deadline. That will be the year anniversary of George Floyd stack, but they've been unable to reach a deal on many issues.

They continue to work behind the scenes, but they will not reach this May 25 deadline they've, they've given themselves. And I haven't even mentioned infrastructure. You know, there was a conference call yesterday meeting between the White House and Senate Republicans who have been working with the White House to try to reach a deal on infrastructure, where the White House made several concessions and proposed a new infrastructure proposal to the Senate Republicans, you know, they brought the price tag down from $2.25 billion to $1.7 billion.

But Senate Republicans weren't happy with this counteroffer. They expressed anger, frustration with the White House for they're not being able to meet in the middle on this issue of infrastructure. So that's also another issue that has stalled in the Senate. Again, this all is about this 60-vote threshold in the Senate, even if every single democrat all 50 tried to support legislation. They still need at least 10. Senate Republicans to pass any bill in the Senate. It always goes back to the filibuster. We always talk about it. So, the question is whether Senate Republicans, Senate Democrats, the White House will be able to meet in the middle on these issues that the President Joe Biden really wants to pass through Congress.

PAUL: All right, Daniela Diaz. We appreciate it so much. Thank you. So, CNN Political Analyst, Laura Baron-Lopez with us, she's a White House Correspondent at Politico. Also joining us, Lynn Sweet, Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun Times. Ladies, it's so good to have you with us as always. I want to ask you about this infrastructure bill. If you've got 16 GOP House members who co- sponsored a bill, and then they voted against it, you have to ask why. Lynn, let's listen to what Errol Louis said to that question earlier this morning.


ERROL LOUIS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: The violent attempt to overturn the election of President Biden was done at the behest of Donald Trump, who is now in complete fingertip control of the Republican Party. They do what they are told to do.


PAUL: Lynn, is that accurate?

LYNN SWEET, WASHINGTON BUREAU CHIEF FOR THE CHICAGO SUN TIMES: Yes, yes. And here's why, that original bill, actually, on a commission was sponsored by a Republican Rodney Davis of Illinois, he had 30 Republican co-sponsors, he put the bill in January 12. That's the day before Trump got impeached for the second time. So of the 30. All republicans so important to know. So this should not have been a surprise, right, that 16 peeled off. The only reason is, is that they come from most of them come from very republican districts trustee, which means that they are very, very vulnerable to a Republican primary challenge from the right, that's the only thing that changed. And that shows the hold that Trump still has on the Republican Party, because already there's a target on their back to get them primary

PAUL: Laura, I think what's so surprising to some people is that these are lawmakers who lived through a pretty terrifying time. And it was hard to watch, you know, from this side of the screen, obviously. So what, what do you think, as you know, as Lynn just talked about the vulnerability in the political arena, but beyond that, is there a hold that Donald Trump has on these people? Or is this all specifically politically driven to save their jobs?

LAURA BARON-LOPEZ, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: He needs exactly like Lynn said, which is that they think that their political survival, their way to winning majorities in the house in the Senate, is by staying tethered to Trump. If they break away from him, they think that they're going to lose more seats. Now, it could be a risky calculation, because of the fact that Trump lost the House, he lost the Senate, he lost the presidency in the span of his four years, and there is very well could be a shrinking Republican base. But Republicans have decided that in order to survive, they want to stick right by his side. So far, you know, going so far as to continue spreading his lies about the election to do it.

PAUL: So, I wanted to ask you, Lynn about President Biden, because he told The New York Times this week, "The progressives don't like me, because I'm not prepared to take on what I would say, and they would say, is a socialist agenda." What do we know about his relationship with the more progressive the more Progressive Congressmen and Women and the focus that they're trying to have on the legislation that is being passed or not?

SWEET: They're giving pressure on him. Let's look at it this right, Christi, it's situational bill, by bill, know what you can get know what you can't. Everything, though, has to be done really, in the first two years fighting White House or Elsa may lose their House or Senate that we're talking about right now. So, the opposite in the county is important, but it is it will be paced out, once you get some -- Biden will eventually figure out a way to give enough of the progressives of what they want, as time goes by knowing the clock is ticking.

PAUL: Laura, you wrote an article, a great article about Joe Biden, Senator versus Joe Biden President and Bidenomics and how he is addressing the fiscal responsibility, I guess we should say, How likely is it that he is going to be able to navigate a victory on infrastructure, let's say, based on his views as president and views as, as he was as a senator and the workings that you know, behind closed doors that he did over all of these years, with other lawmakers who are still, still have a voice there.

LOPEZ: Yes, Christi, throughout his 40-plus-decade career, Biden very much was a fiscal Hawk. During his time in the Senate who voted for the Reagan tax cuts, he voted for Bill Clinton's welfare reform used to tout a balanced budget, which would have made it really POS really impossible to deficit spend, which is what he did with the first big stimulus bill. And so his trajectory very much mirrors the trajectory of the Democratic Party writ large, which is this shift more towards being OK with deficit spending, and really trying to show voters that big government is good for them.

And so that's what he's trying to do; he's trying to still keep his proposals very big, even as he's negotiating with Republicans. As Daniella, said he they only went down 500 billion in their traditional infrastructure proposal to try to work with Republicans, but publicly they're still very far apart Republican Senators and the White House and it really is looking like a bipartisan deal on traditional infrastructure is not going to happen. That doesn't mean Biden isn't going to be able to pass this big bill, though, because, again, we've talked about it a lot this year, budget reconciliation.

That's his route, if he decides to cut bait and not work with Republicans anymore, because they are coming up on that Memorial Day marker where they want to reassess, then they can very well move forward with just Democratic support and try to pass his big spending proposals. Through the reconciliation process.


PAUL: We don't limit Republicans are frustrated, because they don't feel like the White House is engaging them enough when it comes to the infrastructure bill, that the White House brought their package down from 2.2 to 1.7 billion. Republicans are not happy still with that. What, what is the realistic expectation that even beyond infrastructure, as Daniella was talking about, about police reform, about January 6th, that there could be any sort of compromise? You know, can the Democrats do anything differently, to try to engage with Republicans?

SWEET: Well, first, you have to make sure that you have democrat Joe Manchin on board. And to do that, you have to make sure to him and possibly senators, it's Yes, no, I mean, it's down to them to make sure that you showed you did everything possible to be bipartisan. And actually, I think that shows that you do first have to pass that infrastructure bill, and maybe you go down to 800 billion, I believe there is some feeling among Democrats on the Hill, go for a traditional infrastructure bill, bricks and mortar, then when you take the social infrastructure items, you take that out.

Get a bipartisan bill show you have something done, because maybe real people out there who vote may not care, about 800 billion or 1 trillion, they just want something show you got that done with Republicans, then you move on to policing, immigration, and the items that you do and reconciliation, which by the way, because of all those rules in the senate isn't as easy as it sounds. But at least we know that the Biden team then will have a better political stance within the party and externally, even among Republicans to show that they have one thing under their belt. Then they move on alone. Because as I said, the clock's ticking. They only make up until the midterms

PAUL: A very good point. Laura Baron-Lopez and Lynn Sweet, your perspectives are important to us. Thank you for being here.

SWEET: Thank you.

SANCHEZ: Listen, that ceasefire in the Middle East remains very fragile. And now millions of dollars in humanitarian aid is finally arriving in Gaza for those affected by the fighters stay with us we'll be back after a quick break.



CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR (on camera): Right now, it is a fragile cease-fire, but it does appear to be holding between Israel and Hamas, as we're in the second day now. Tensions are still high.

Israeli police, Palestinian protesters clashing just hours after that agreement was reached impact.

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (on camera): 11 days of fighting left more than 250 people dead, including more than 60 children. Yesterday, Israel opened a key border crossing allowing human humanitarian aid into Gaza. The U.N. now sending food, medical supplies, and COVID vaccines.

PAUL: President Biden said he is ready to work with the U.N. to help rebuild Gaza and promised to help restock Israel's Iron Dome defense system.

SANCHEZ: Joining us now to talk more about the conflict is Natan Sachs. He is the director for the Center of Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution.

Natan, good morning. Thank you so much for spending some of your weekend with us. I want to start --



SANCHEZ: I want to start by something you wrote in a recent piece for Brookings, explaining that this is different from the typical cyclical fighting that we've seen between Israel and Hamas.

You write this, "The tribal lines evoked in this violence, this perfect storm of grievances and fears will remain when the guns finally fall silent."

The guns have mostly fallen silent, so, what has made the last few weeks different in your eyes?

SACHS: Well, what we're seeing in the cease-fire that hopefully will hold between Israel and Hamas, and that is excellent. But what led to this round of violence, if can call at that was very different in previous time. So, it wasn't just Hamas demanding changes to the Israeli-Egyptian blockade of the Gaza Strip or Israel discovering some Hamas capability that it didn't felt it had to take out.

Rather what we saw was clashes mostly in Jerusalem, and then, demonstrations in the West Bank that led them to Hamas seeing an opening, and trying to take control or take leadership of this conflict.

And then, we saw even clashes inside Israel. So, we're seeing now is not Israel -- just Israel-Hamas and the cease-fire between them. But also a much broader conflict where other territories, Israel, some in particular, but also the West Bank.

And Israel with communal violence between Jews and Israeli -- and -- Jews and Arabs, Palestinians who are citizens of Israel.

A lot of that has died down -- died down now inside Israel which is excellent. But specially, if you look at Jerusalem, we have already seen clashes on Temple Mount, to Haram al-Sharif, around the Al-Aqsa Mosque, and we could see more.

And if you recall, a lot of this began with the looming eviction of Palestinian families from homes in east Jerusalem. That possible election is still -- eviction is still looming.

The Supreme Court of Israel is to rule on this. It postponed the rulings as not to inflame things further. But that ruling will come, and all of the ingredients for much of what we saw, I hope not the same with Hamas and Israel, but that the rest of what we just saw, all the ingredients are still there.


SANCHEZ: Yes, and so, with conflicts over land rights, that eviction that you mentioned still looming tensions boiling over at holy sites. It obviously remains unsolved. So, from your perspective, what needs to happen for this to be a lasting cease-fire? Where is the path to peace here? Is there one?

SACHS: Well, I think we need to, first, lower our expectations about peace. In the past, we've always talked about huge negotiations that would bring about an Israeli-Palestinian final status agreement. That's just not in the cards. And I think the American administration recognizes that. Certainly, the Israelis and Palestinians do.

But that doesn't mean that you can't do anything. In the past, we've always had this all or nothing approach. Either we reach a final status agreement or we throw our hands up in the air. And that was a mistake.

Instead, we need to look at the various problems and try to solve them. Some of them are very long-term, deep structural solutions. That would be very difficult. Some of them can be done much faster.

So, for example, between Israel and Gaza, there are lot of things that can be done far short of any peace, because there is not going to be any peace between Hamas and Israel. But there can be a significant easing of the blockade if there were ways in which Hamas could credibly commit not to arming and firing at Israel.

The two sides have negotiated in the past indirectly, of course, about the possibility of a long-term cease-fire. I'm skeptical they can reach some kind of formal agreement. But that doesn't mean there can't be tacit arrangements by the Egyptians, and perhaps, even bringing in the Palestinian Authority from Ramallah, which is very difficult because of the animosity between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas.

But allowing for much more movement of people and goods, allowing for an opening up of the Gaza Strip, which would be extremely important. Whether or not it prevents the next round of violence, it would improve dramatically the lives of 2 million people living in the Gaza Strip under Hamas rule and blockaded by Israel and Egypt.

That's the kind of thing that can be done in the short term. In East Jerusalem, inside Israel, and in the West Bank, there's a whole set of other actors. Israel, prominently, of course, a Palestinian Authority, very importantly, they had postponed elections that they had just called. And we see really a political deadlock almost, the stagnation of the political scene with the Palestinian Authority.

So, a lot of homework needs to be done on both sides. Politically, Israel and the Palestinian Authority. But also, to my mind, a deep rethink in Israeli strategy and Israeli policy with regard to East Jerusalem. At the very least, it's not to create these kinds of scenarios that we saw in the past few weeks.

SANCHEZ: Yes, and certainly, the United States has a huge role in that, and potentially, the Biden administration naming an ambassador to Israel in the next few weeks will be an instrumental move.

Natan Sachs, unfortunately, we have to leave the conversation there, but we appreciate your time. Thank you so much.

SACHS: Thank you very much.

SANCHEZ: Of course. The good news is that more kids and teens are beginning to get the COVID vaccine. The bad news is that fewer adults are opting to get vax.

Up next, Polo Sandoval joins us live with details on why the low vaccination rate is concerning and some creative incentives being offered to entice people to roll up their sleeves.



SANCHEZ: Look, there's really good news when it comes to COVID. The United States averaging around 31,000 new COVID cases this past week. That's the lowest average in nearly a year.

Health officials though, they're still worried because of declining vaccination rates across the country.

PAUL: And over the past week, less than 2 million doses were administered per day. That's a 46 percent drop from its peak just a month ago. Less than half of Americans have received at least one vaccine dose, and only 38 percent of the population is fully vaccinated.

We know that is a long way from herd immunity, considering the fact that we need 75 to 80 percent vaccination for that.

SANCHEZ: Yes, let's get to CNN's Polo Sandoval. He has more on how states are pushing to increase vaccinations.

Polo, do we know what areas of the country specifically are lagging?

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Well, Christi and Boris, you guys are referring to some of those states with the lowest vaccinations per capita.

Many of those are in the southeast, they include states like Louisiana, Georgia, Mississippi, Alabama, and so on. So, what concerns officials right now with about 62 percent of the population not yet fully vaccinated is, what will happen if vaccination rates throughout the country don't get a much-needed boost?



SANDOVAL (voice-over): Another dose of progress this weekend. By now, one out of every 12 people in the U.S. ages 12 to 15 have received their first COVID-19 vaccine dose according to the CDC, an effort to get shots into younger arms are less than two weeks in.

The U.S. also averaging fewer than 30,000 new COVID cases a day.

DR. ROCHELLE WALENSKY, DIRECTOR, CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL: The last time, the seven day average of cases per day was this low was June 18th, 2020.

SANDOVAL: Along with dropping case counts. The country is seeing less COVID hospitalizations. None at one of the bay area's biggest hospitals for the first time in 14 months.

DR. MONICA GANDHI, MEDICAL DIRECTOR, SAN FRANCISCO GENERAL HOSPITAL: It feels like a milestone. There are zero admissions at San Francisco General --

SANDOVAL: Encouraging statistics mean more re-openings. Ahead of the weekend, Delaware lifted its mask in social distancing mandates, as well as capacity limits. California drops all capacity restrictions when the state fully reopens June 15th.


SANDOVAL: And Michigan, which struggled with a severe COVID surge just a few weeks ago announced it's returning to full capacity for outdoor events on June the first. Michigan's governor aiming to do the same indoors come July.

DR. JESSICA SHEPHERD, CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER, VERYWELL HEALTH: Now, it comes to how do we live in communities and with each other between those that are vaccinated and unvaccinated these are things that time will tell but also taking into account continuing that message of the importance of vaccination.

SANDOVAL: Some state officials crediting improved vaccination rates for restoring more normalcy for the residents. Nationally though, the Biden administration is concerned.

The average daily pace of coronavirus vaccinations is down almost 50 percent from its peak last month. States like Oregon adding a shot at a jackpot in exchange for a shot in the arm.

GOV. KATE BROWN (D-OR): If you've been waiting to get a vaccine or you just haven't gotten around to it yet, we're going to give you an extra incentive. How about a chance to win a million dollars?

SANDOVAL: A similar incentive seems to help in the Buckeye State. Ohio health officials reporting a 28 percent increase in vaccinations for people 16 and older, following the announcement of a million-dollar lottery for the vaccinated and full-right scholarships for vaccine recipients under 18.


SANDOVAL (on camera): It's a recent CDC figure is now showing. About 1,300 so-called breakthrough cases have been reported. This is the infection of fully vaccinated people. But you -- when you compare that to roughly 127 million people, who have been fully vaccinated, the numbers are pretty good there/ Christi.

So, if some of those lotto figures aren't enough to actually get people -- to get that vaccine, then, some of those CDC numbers could potentially suggest or at least they do show how effective these vaccines are.

PAUL: No doubt. Polo Sandoval, thank you.

So, I know that you still have medical questions about the coronavirus, about the vaccines. Dr. Rob Davidson is joining us tomorrow morning, and he wants to answer those questions.

So, tweet them to us at Christi underscore Paul and at Boris underscore Sanchez. We -- he'd love to hear from you. We want to make sure we get your questions answered.

So, experts are predicting another very active hurricane season and we already have our first named storm of the season this morning. Allison Chinchar is with us next.



PAUL: there's another above-average, active Atlantic hurricane season predicted this year. The season begins June 1st, by the way. There are already two systems of concern though.

SANCHEZ: Yes, and this is the seventh season in a row that tropical systems have developed before the official start. And just this morning, we have our first named storm of the season.

Let's get to meteorologist Allison Chinchar. She's in the CNN weather center.

Allison, what's the name and does this pattern, seven years now in a row, does this concern you?

ALLISON CHINCHAR, CNN METEOROLOGIST (on camera): Right, yes, it's certainly something to think about.

Good morning. Yes, we're talking about the first storm of the season, subtropical storm Ana. Now, Ana right now sustained winds of 45 miles per hour, it's gusting even stronger than that. The sub in front of the name really just comes from the fact that it kind of really formed in a little bit of a colder environment than normal, but it still has tropical characteristics.

Now, the storm, in particular, we do have a tropical storm watch in effect for Bermuda. We anticipate the winds and even some waves to really kick up throughout the day today.

But starting tomorrow, it will start to push away from the area back out over open water, which is good news. But as you mentioned, yes this is the seventh consecutive year in a row where we've really had a named storm before the season begins officially on June 1st, we're 10 days before that. In this form, 12 days before.

But what may make this year even more interesting is we may end up with two named storms even before the season officially begins. And that's because we're keeping an eye on this developing system just off the coast of Texas, in the Gulf of Mexico.

It only has a 30 percent chance of development, but that's more to the fact that it's likely to move inland in less than the next 12 hours. So, it just doesn't really likely have much time to continue to strengthen. Regardless, it is anticipated to bring a surge of moisture into areas of Texas.

Widespread totals, two to four inches, some spots could pick up five, six, seven, maybe even as much as eight inches of rain, especially closer to the coast before the system finally pushes out.

If it does get named, the next name on the list becomes Bill. Here is the full list of names that will be used this year. Remember, if we use all of these, we will no longer use the Greek alphabet but rather a new supplemental list that was issued earlier this year.

The forecast for this year though is calling for another active season. Normally, you have 14 named storms, seven hurricanes, and three major hurricanes. Both NOAA and Colorado State, two very important entities that forecast the season are both anticipating, Boris and Christi for those numbers to be higher than average.

But we all know, regardless of whether you have 17 storms or one storm, if it hits you, it's an impactful season.


SANCHEZ: Yes, an important reminder. Allison Chinchar, thank you so much for that. Hey, stay with NEW DAY. We'll be back after a quick break.


ANNOUNCER: "FOOD AS FUEL" is brought to you by noom. Noom is based in psychology, for lasting health and weight loss results.

PAUL: Listen if you don't know your black tea from your green or white tea, CNN health reporter Jacqueline Howard clues us all in, in today's "FOOD IS FUEL".

JACQUELINE HOWARD, CNN HEALTH REPORTER: There is Indian chai tea, Japanese green tea, and of course, English black tea. But is any of it good for you? It can be if you brew it at home and stay away from those pre-sweetened canned and bottled teas.

Now, black, green, and white tea, they all come from the same plants, the camellia sinensis. Herbal teas like chamomile or mint tea do not come from this plant, so they don't have the same health benefits.

The polyphenols contained in black, white, and green tea have anti- inflammatory and antioxidant properties. And they're linked to the prevention of heart disease, diabetes, and maybe even cancer.

So, if it comes from the same plant, what's the difference between black, green, and white tea, well it's just the way it's processed.

Drinking tea is generally very safe, but some people may be sensitive to the caffeine. Teas may also contain Vitamin K. So, if you're on blood thinners, you should check with your doctor first.