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New Day Saturday
27 States Report A Rise In Cases As Delta Variant Spreads; Updated CDC School Guidance Prioritizes In-Person Learning; Pfizer To Seek FDA Authorization For Vaccine Booster Shot; Biden And Putin Talk Cyberattacks; Biden Warns Putin To Act On Ransomware Attacks; Two Confederate Statues Set To Come Down In Charlottesville. Aired 7-8a ET
Aired July 10, 2021 - 07:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Despite the terrible accusations to come for Bill Cosby.
JALEEL WHITE, AMERICAN ACTOR: With respect to what's happened of late, it's like, hugely disappointing to all of u, but he set the standard for what a family sitcom was.
FOREMAN: Number three.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Good evening and welcome to FYI.
FOREMAN: Murphy Brown. Long before the Me Too movement, this show engaged women's rights. And when a real-life vice president said the fictional single mom was undermining family values --
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mocking the importance of fathers.
FOREMAN: Brown hit back.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And in a country where millions of children grow up in non-traditional families, that definition seems painfully unfair.
FOREMAN: Number two, Modern Family. As it is fulfilling Murphy Brown's vision and answering all in the family's myopia, this program has quietly championed inclusivity.
And number one, I Love Lucy began the modern age of sitcoms with a female star married to a Cuban man.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Ricky, can I be in the show?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
FOREMAN: In real life, the couple's shared ownership and management of their studio, breaking barriers in ways that still resonate over the laughter. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Even out on moms.
FOREMAN: Tom Foreman, CNN.
BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning and welcome to your NEW DAY. I'm Boris Sanchez.
CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, Boris. I'm Christi Paul.
So, as the Delta variant causes COVID cases to surge, there's new guidance on how schools should prep to have kids back full time. That's two weeks away. And there are also questions about whether those of us who have been vaccinated may soon need a booster shot.
SANCHEZ: Plus, fighting back, President Biden pledging to take action against Russia following a spate of ransomware attacks, as we learned Biden spoke with Russian President Vladimir Putin just yesterday.
PAUL: The countdown is on to billionaire Richard Branson sets a rocket into space this weekend. We're looking at how these decades in the making mission is going to unfold.
SANCHEZ: And Southwest sizzler, the big cities that could see temperatures as high as 115 degrees today.
SANCHEZ: Good morning and welcome to your NEW DAY. It is Saturday, July 10th. Thank you so much for joining us.
PAUL: Yes. Hello, Boris. And to all of our friends out in Phoenix, I lived in Phoenix for many years, 115. God bless you. It is -- the dry heat doesn't matter at that point that we know.
So, we do want to talk about this morning from health officials this morning. The spread of the Delta variant of COVID-19. It's leading to these mini outbreaks across the country.
SANCHEZ: Yes, 27 states reporting an uptick in COVID-19 cases over the last week. The Delta variant now the most prevalent strain in the United States, spreading in areas, as you might expect, with low vaccination rates. The CDC calling on schools to promote vaccinations in new guidance.
Yesterday, health officials issuing that guidance saying in-person schooling is a priority this fall.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, PRESIDENT BIDEN'S CHIEF MEDICAL ADVISER: Obviously, depending upon the age of the children, some will be vaccinated, some not. Those who are not vaccinated should be wearing masks. The CDC says they'd like to maintain the three-foot distance. And if they can't, they're going to work around to do other things. Make sure there's good ventilation.
The message is loud and clear, come to fall. We want the children back in school in person.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: And now, there are questions about just how long the vaccines will protect us. Pfizer says it is planning to seek emergency use authorization for a booster shot as soon as next month. Well, the FDA says booster shots aren't needed right now. There are concerns those conflicting messages from Pfizer and health officials will make those already hesitant about the vaccine even more skeptical.
CNN senior medical correspondent, Elizabeth Cowen, explains how Pfizer made this decision.
ELIZABETH COWEN, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: There's been a lot of confusion following statements from Pfizer and from the US government about whether people need to get a third shot, a booster, of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine. Pfizer put out a statement saying that they think there's waning immunity, and they're going to ask the FDA next month for emergency use authorization for a third shot.
However, the federal government says that third shot isn't necessary. So, let's take it from what Pfizer has to say. Pfizer didn't cite any new data or any particular study to show that there's waning immunity. Instead, they pointed to just some new Israeli data that's not been published in a study, that has not been fully explained. But let's take a look at that Israeli data.
A few days ago, the Israeli Ministry of Health came out with data saying that the Pfizer vaccine is now just 64 percent effective at preventing infection, that's lower than previously. But, and this is the really important number, it's 93 percent effective at preventing severe disease and hospitalization. This is off of recent data. It is unclear why Pfizer thinks that this means that there's waning immunity since 93 percent is actually a very, very powerful vaccine.
So, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration then put out a joint statement, which hardly ever happens, saying, no, you don't need boosters right now. Let's take a look at their wording, because it was so clear and so direct. They said Americans who have been fully vaccinated do not need a booster shot at this time.
And it's not just the FDA and the CDC, experts are telling us also, you don't need a booster shot at this time, maybe in the future, but certainly not now. The one exception, if you're immune compromised, if you take drugs to suppress your immune system, you might benefit from the third shot. But for everyone else, the two shots are working really, really well. Back to you.
PAUL: Elizabeth, thank you so much.
Dr. Saju Mathew, a primary care physician and public health specialist with us now. Good morning to you, Sachi. Thanks for being here. So --
SAJU MATHEW, PUBLIC HEALTH SPECIALIST: Good morning, Christi. PAUL: Good morning. So as a doctor, I want to get your take on this. Where do you stand on Pfizer seeking this authorization for a booster and some health officials who say, you know, that there's really no need for it? Where do you stand and what's your reasoning for it?
MATHEW: Yes. Christi, let me see if I can clear up some confusion. This is the bottom line here. These vaccines work really well even at this point. The study that Elizabeth just quoted in Israel is just one study that's not been peer reviewed. We have studies from Europe, from Scotland, even here in the U.S. to show that these vaccines work to prevent severe disease, hospitalizations, and deaths. What more do you want from a vaccine?
And listen to this, in the month of May, most COVID deaths, over 99 percent of people who died from COVID, were in the unvaccinated group. So right now, we don't need a booster shot. We might need a booster shot later, next year.
I think these vaccines will work beautifully for probably over a year, because it's not just antibodies, Christi, that help us fight COVID, we also have these T-cells and B-cells, these helper cells that also help us fight, but let's focus on the 25 million Americans who have not received their second shot and 100 million eligible people in this country that have not even gotten their first shot.
PAUL: So, when we talk about this potential booster shot, we -- we're hearing from Pfizer. Do you anticipate the same would be true for Moderna? Because there are a lot of people watching right now who had Moderna and maybe thinking, I don't know where this leaves me.
MATHEW: Yes, these two vaccines, Moderna and Pfizer, they are the mRNA vaccines which will go down in history as some of the safest and most effective vaccines ever. But yes, what is true for Pfizer will also be true for Moderna. And again, we do know that antibodies will begin to wane six, seven months after you get the shot. We know that, but that doesn't necessarily mean that the vaccines are still not effective and safe.
PAUL: So, the CDC updated its back-to-school policies and guidance. They're prioritizing in-person learning. I want to play some sound hear from Dr. Leana Wen who talked to Wolf Blitzer last night, and she does have a bit of trepidation about one thing in particular. Let's listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LEANA WEN, CNN MEDICAL ANALYST: I do have a concern, which is they're saying that if you're vaccinated, you can take off your mask, but how are we going to verify if someone is actually vaccinated? That's the big mistake of the Biden administration, I think, so far, to not get behind vaccine credentialing in some way.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PAUL: Do you have that same concern, Saju? MATHEW: I agree with Dr. Wen. You know, listen, as we move towards trying to get America fully protected and vaccinated, the biggest hurdle really with the White House, while they've done an incredible job trying to get as many people vaccinated is we're not requiring some type of documentation. How do you know who's vaccinated and who's not vaccinated? I just went into the grocery store last weekend here in Atlanta, most of the people in the grocery store are not masked. And I can guarantee you that most of those people are probably not vaccinated. So, yes, we can get our kids back to school, but if we don't know who's vaccinated, it's really difficult to say the vaccinated don't have to wear mask, but only the unvaccinated should be masking.
But I think the CDC has it right, children need to go back to school. We need to do the frequent testing. If you're 12 years and above, here's the bottom line, get vaccinated and we keep everybody safe in the school system.
PAUL: Pfizer did say that they're going to release data pretty soon on all of this. What will you be eyeing in that report?
MATHEW: Quite a number of factors. Number one, if the antibody is waning, if it's decreasing, by how much exactly is the decreasing? Is the vaccine covering these variants, right? That's one of our biggest concerns, as we want to make sure that the vaccine covers all the variants, Delta variants, Alpha variants. And guess what, this is not the last time that we're going to see a contagious variant.
And one last thing that I think is really key is, we need to make sure that people who are fully vaccinated, if they get a breakthrough infection, are they going to potentially transmit the virus to people around them? That's going to be key.
I'm a primary care doctor, Christi, I still recommend that even if you're fully vaccinated and you have symptoms, get tested. Let's see the rate of breakthrough infections with these vaccines.
PAUL: Dr. Saju Mathew, we certainly value your perspective. Thank you.
MATHEW: Thank you, Christi.
PAUL: Sure. And listen, coming up, President Biden's new warning to Vladimir Putin. Details about their hour-long discussion about the new cyber-attacks coming from Russia.
SANCHEZ: Plus, the Taliban gaining ground in Afghanistan as the United States pulls out troops. President Biden insisting the withdraw is the best for the U.S. and to Afghanistan. We'll discuss what's at stake.
SANCHEZ: The White House says President Biden spent about an hour speaking with Russian President, Vladimir Putin, on Friday as the United States vows to take action in the coming weeks in response to ransomware attacks originating from Russia.
CNN's Jasmine Wright is with us now from Wilmington, Delaware. Jasmine, good to see you this morning. What more do you know right now about that President's call?
JASMINE WRIGHT, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Well, President Biden told reporters that he expects Russia to act against this latest ransomware attack. Now, this comes just three weeks after President Biden and President Putin met in Geneva where cybersecurity was a major focus of their discussion.
And so now in this call, again, it is front and center. White House officials say that that phone call lasted about an hour. And in a readout release afterwards, they underscored that President Biden -- excuse me, they said that President Biden underscored the need for Russia to take action to disrupt ransomware groups operating in Russia, and later President Biden speaking to our own Jeff Zeleny, said that he issued another warning to Putin about it, but said that he was optimistic when Zeleny asked the President about Putin's response. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The United States respects when ransomware operation is coming from his soil even though it's not sponsored by the state. We expect them to act if we give them enough information to act on who that is. And secondly, that we've set up a means of communications now on a regular basis to be able to communicate to one another when each of us thinks something's happened in another country that affects the home country. And it he went well, I'm optimistic.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You said three weeks ago, there would be consequences. Will there be, sir?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WRIGHT: So, now, the question is, what will those consequences be? When I spoke to the president, just an hour after that clip happened on the tarmac before he came here to Delaware, I asked him what he expects President Putin to do, what action does he expect President Putin to take? Now, President Biden said that it would be inappropriate for him to say and that we will see. But take a look at his reaction when asked if it makes sense to attack the servers that actually carried out the attacks, which would be an escalation of the country's response.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Does it make sense for the U.S. to take it up a notch and attack the actual servers that are used?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WRIGHT: So, that was potentially a small little preview of what President Biden could do. Now, officials later on declined to go into more specifics, just saying that any action could come in the days or weeks ahead.
But this will definitely be an interesting relationship between President Biden and President Putin to watch evolve as they clearly have an open line of communication. Boris, Christi.
SANCHEZ: We'll keep an eye on what happens there if the United States decides to retaliate against those hackers. Jasmine Wright reporting from Wilmington, Delaware, thank you so much.
Another major foreign policy message coming from the White House this week after nearly 20 years of combat, no more U.S. troops will be going to war in Afghanistan.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BIDEN: I will not send another generation of Americans to war in Afghanistan with no reasonable expectation of achieving a different outcome.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: President Biden, this week, defending his decision to withdraw nearly all U.S. forces from that country, even though the Taliban are quickly moving through the countryside of retaking territory, with little to no resistance, leading to questions about the future of the Afghan government.
Dan Lamothe, a reporter with The Washington Post who covers Afghanistan joins me now. Dan, after two decades of war, it appears the Taliban is regaining much of what it lost. I want you to listen to General Austin Scott Miller describing the situation there.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEN. AUSTIN SCOTT MILLER, COMMANDER, NATO RESOLUTE SUPPORT MISSION: We should be concerned. The loss of terrain and the rapidity of that loss of terrain has to be concerning. One, because it's a war, it's physical, but it's also got a psychological or moral component to it. And hope actually matters and morale actually matters
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: Twenty-four hundred U.S. troops killed, many more wounded, trillions of dollars spent in Afghanistan. Some will say that the mission was accomplished because U.S. forces destroyed those responsible for the September 11 terror attacks. But the way that this war is coming to an end doesn't exactly resemble success. DAN LAMOTHE, REPORTER, WASHINGTON POST: It's a challenging, challenging situation. Yes, I think the thing that's the most concerning at this point is the Taliban is not only sweeping across the countryside, they're encircling a lot of the provincial capital cities. None of those had fallen yet, but it's getting close. And we probably could see that in the coming week.
SANCHEZ: I want to get your thoughts on the President's mindset and his messaging here. You recently wrote of President Biden, quote, "Afghanistan evokes more emotion from Biden than almost any other subject. And he said forcefully Thursday that a takeover by the Taliban was not inevitable because the country's fate was in the hands of Afghanistan's leaders." Help us understand the thought process here and the messaging, because it does appear inevitable that the Taliban is going to have a major role in Afghanistan, perhaps, even leading a civil war.
LAMOTHE: I think President Biden's got a -- got a real challenge here in terms of explaining why it's time to, not only get most, but all U.S. troops effectively out while all of this is going on. There's been a long discussion of trying to get some, sort of, deal between the Afghan government and the Taliban, but the Taliban position, it only strengthens over time. And the U.S. military's departure weakens the Afghan government's position in any kind of negotiations.
SANCHEZ: Yes. What leverage would the Afghans have without a U.S. military presence there?
LAMOTHE: Not a lot. It really comes down to what kind of deal can you broker, and the Taliban becomes a stronger and stronger partner in government in that case.
SANCHEZ: Yes. And as far as the emotion that this evokes in Biden, why do you think that is?
LAMOTHE: I think some of it's -- just the sacrifice that he has seen over the years, both in terms of his own son in Iraq, but then, more broadly, I mean, he was around through the surge, he had very mixed feelings himself about whether or not we should have sent 100,000 troops into Afghanistan in that 2010 timeframe. We're at the point where we're closing in on 800,000 different Americans serving in uniform there. Somewhere in a neighborhood of about 30,000 have done so five times.
SANCHEZ: Wow. You've noted also that some military analysts have argued that the Taliban is now at odds with Al-Qaeda and ISIS. I want to figure out why and also ask if that is enough to ensure that these terrorist groups are not going to find safe harbor in Afghanistan to then launch new attacks.
LAMOTHE: That's a running concern. I think it's pretty well documented that the Taliban is at odds with ISIS. Whether they're at odds with Al-Qaeda, is I think a much more complicated picture. A lot of people don't see that break. That was a part of the deal that the Taliban signed with the United States. They were supposed to break with Al- Qaeda. We haven't seen as much evidence of that as I think we had hoped.
SANCHEZ: Now, Dan, CNN has learned that the White House has not yet finalized its policy for pursuing terrorists in Afghanistan once troops are out of the country. There's no set policy for things like drone strikes or surveillance and the withdrawal is hindered U.S. capacity in those areas. Do you think the U.S. is leaving too much of its security concerns up to the Afghans?
LAMOTHE: I think the plan right now is to get as much out as they can, and at least force the Afghan hand to take a more leading role. There's been a long messaging campaign going back a decade saying that this was an Afghan-led war. And the reality has often been much more complex and not really resemble that on the ground.
When it comes to what this is going to look like going forward, yes, when you talk to a lot of national security professionals, people who have done counterterrorism, their biggest concern is that when you bring the military out, a lot of the intelligence ability, the collection ability, goes with it because you can't keep a lot of those same posts up and running without the security that the military provides.
SANCHEZ: A lot of unanswered questions in Afghanistan as we watch the Taliban day by day make enormous gains. Dan Lamothe, we appreciate your expertise. Thanks so much for joining us this morning.
LAMOTHE: Thank you.
SANCHEZ: So, we should tell you right now, officials in Charlottesville are preparing to take down a pair of statues honoring Confederate generals. And this comes nearly four years of failed efforts to remove the controversial symbols. You'll remember this was the Flashpoint for that 2017 Unite the Right rally that left one protester dead.
PAUL: CNN's Evan McMorris-Santoro is with us now from Charlottesville. Talk to us about what's happening there, what you've seen so far this morning, Evan, and good morning.
EVAN MCMORRIS-SANTORO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning. Boris and Christi, you take a look behind me, you can see here the cranes are in place, the hoists are being put together. We're just minutes away from this statue of Robert E. Lee, that has stood in this park for around 100 years, to finally come down and be moved somewhere else away from celebrating Robert E. Lee here in Charlottesville, Virginia.
This is a big deal for this town and something that's been almost -- I'd say four years in the making. It started back in 2016 when local high school students heard a petition trying to get this statue and a statue of Stonewall Jackson, not too far away, removed. That was bogged down in legal battles, and obviously became a national cause that eventually ended with that Unite the Right rally that left one dead in a fight over whether or not this history should be maintained in this exact way. Well, now, today, that fight is over, and the statues are coming down. The mayor spoke earlier today here in Charlottesville, saying that this is a moment that she calls a victory. But said also is the start of more work to be done about teaching history in a way that they say is more reflective of how things actually are here in the South and here in the United States, rather than telling it in this way of celebrating people like Robert E Lee.
And I have to tell you, we all know that Unite the Rally -- that Unite the Right rally was a real kickoff for some of the darkest days in my lifetime when it came to racial politics in this country. And to see that come to an end today with these statues coming down, really, is quite a moving thing to see. Boris and Christi.
PAUL: Evan McMorris-Santoro, we appreciate it so much, and he'll be with us throughout the morning, so we'll be watching there. Thank you.
Up next, Richard Branson's historic flight this weekend as he prepares to go boldly where billionaire has gone before.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SHIHAN MUSAFER, YOUNG CALLER: Have you ever thought about going to into space, Richard?
RICHARD BRANSON, FOUNDER, VIRGIN GROUP: I'd love to go into space, as I think pretty well everybody watching this show would love to go to space. I mean, when you see those magnificent pictures in space and the incredible views, I think there's been -- there could be nothing nicer.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
PAUL (on camera): The size of that phone pretty much gives a way. How long, long ago that was. But that was billionaire Richard Branson over three decades ago. And tomorrow, listen, this could finally happen.
PAUL (voice-over): Branson said to head to the edge of space on the supersonic space plane built by his company, Virgin Galactic. And Branson says he cannot wait.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BRANSON: Yes, never be more excited in my life, and the wonderful team will be coming up with me are equally set.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SANCHEZ: If all goes as planned, Branson is going to become the first founder of a space company to get there in a vehicle that he helped to fund, beating former Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos by nine days. CNN's Rachel Crane is live for us in New Mexico this morning. Rachel, it's just about a day away, a little over a day away. What more can you tell us about this space race?
RACHEL CRANE, CNN BUSINESS INNOVATION AND SPACE CORRESPONDENT: Well, let's talk about just that, that phrase that you just said right there, space race.
I mean, while optically, yes, I admit it does. In fact, look like a race Branson and his team maintaining to me that they do not see this as a race between Virgin Galactic and Blue Origin, or rather Branson and Bezos as outsiders have really pegged it.
Virgin Galactic and Branson saying that their accelerated timeline for this test flight is the result of an updated FAA license, as well as a recent what they deemed flawless test flight, allowing them to accelerate their timeline, and beating Bezos's suborbital test flight or first crewed flight rather which is set for July 20th.
But let me tell you Boris and Christi, here on the ground, we were behind the gates at Spaceport America yesterday. It was incredibly exciting and it is a flurry of activity. Yesterday was a down day for the crew to rest. Branson spending the day with his family and friends who have come here to New Mexico to view this space flight.
But here at Spaceport America, it was far from a rest day. I mean, we're talking buses, fences, tents, jumbotrons being set up because, of course, there is the event of the space flight. But in typical Branson fashion, there's also the spectacle of the space flight.
So, that is becoming a huge event here at Spaceport America, including musical performances as well as a webcast that will be hosted by Stephen Colbert.
But, you know, it's important to remember that this is still a test flight. Virgin Galactic still in their test flight program. They say they will not begin their commercial operations until 2022.
I had the chance to speak with their president of safety yesterday, Mike Moses, about the extra safety precautions that they are taking on this flight. Take a listen to what he had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MIKE MOSES, PRESIDENT, VIRGIN GALACTIC SPACE MISSION AND SAFETY: So, on this flight everybody will be wearing a parachute. And it's there for a case that is pretty unrealistic and very low probability.
We test on the ground, we verify that, that doesn't happen. But it's also not zero, right? And so, we want to give that extra level of control.
We haven't determined exactly how long that safety measure is going to stay in place, but for this flight, we'll be taking some of those extra steps, extra oxygen and parachutes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CRANE (on camera): Boris and Christi, Mike Moses went on to tell me that there will be emergency response here on the ground at Spaceport America in the chance that there is an anomaly.
CRANE: But you know, also, Mike Moses, I want to point out is the husband of Beth Moses. Beth Moses will also be emission specialist on this mission. So, both his wife and his boss are going to be in that cabin. So, that there's a lot of pressure on him, and he's though seems incredibly confident the safety of this mission. Boris, Christi.
SANCHEZ: And we will all be watching. Rachel Crane from New Mexico. Thank you so much for that report.
Up next, the GOP's midterm strategy revealed obstruct President Biden's agenda and push restrictive voting bills across the country. What it says about today's GOP and what's at stake ahead.
PAUL: 40 minutes past the hour right now, we're glad to have you here.
So, in the recent days here, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy seems to be struggling to keep the GOP's most controversial members in check. Now, it could be a GOP strategy, some say heading into midterms.
Here is Texas Congressman Chip Roy. In fact, he is talking in this leaked video. Listen to what he said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. CHIP ROY (R-TX): Honestly, right now for the next 18 months, our job is to do everything we can to slow that down to get to December 2022. And then get in -- get in inherently.
PAUL: So, in response to coverage of his remarks, Roy repeated what he said, stating that he plans to, "oppose almost everything that Congress does."
POLITICO White House reporter Daniel Lippman has been watching this. He's with us now. Daniel, it's good to see you this morning.
DANIEL LIPPMAN, WHITE HOUSE REPORTER, POLITICO: Good to see you.
PAUL: Talk to us about this strategy and how it really could impact midterms, what is the thinking behind this?
LIPPMAN: So, do you see in the first election after a president takes office, he's going to lose a lot of seats. And so, it seems like they want to prevent Biden from accomplishing anything, which is kind of a fool's errand given that, you know, Biden's White House, they know that this is a Republican strategy.
And they have done a lot of executive actions. They feel good about how they have, you know, sent checks to many Americans. But for someone like Chip Roy, you would think that he would want to work with the White House because there are infrastructure needs in his district. And I think Americans are kind of tired of the chaos we had from the last administration. And they're tired of year of pandemic, that these comments may not even be popular among many in his own district.
PAUL: So, a few couple of these comments, say with the comments recently from Marjorie Taylor Greene, comparing the Biden administration's vaccine push to Nazi-era brown shirts.
This is verbiage that minority leader -- House Minority Leader McCarthy has publicly denounced to -- a spokeswoman actually from his department said there is absolutely no place for racism in our discourse or society. But it -- there is no consequence beyond those words.
So far, what do you make of that strategy to perhaps not have a consequence for this, and to have words that seem at this point to be empty?
LIPPMAN: Yes, it seems like when you have people who say those types of wild things, and she had to go to the Holocaust museum to learn about the Holocaust a couple weeks ago, but it didn't seem to stick. I think they don't want to antagonize those Trump loyalists, many millions of Americans and Republican voters who like Marjorie Taylor Greene, and who liked the foreign president.
And they are worried that if you take committee assignments off, or you punish these members for speaking out of line, that would depress Republican turnout next year. And so, they are loath to take actions, to hurt their chances of retaking the majority.
PAUL: Is there a risk in that for the House leader?
LIPPMAN: I think there's a risk in terms of your legacy for history. But most politicians, they want to just get through the next election, and he won, you know, he has the best chance of being Speaker.
And so, in a matter of, you know, pure political calculation, it makes sense. Because the party is not the party of George W. Bush anymore. It's a party that embrace it, or many people embrace things like, you know, what Marjorie Taylor Greene.
Although, there is a significant portion that would not want that. And, you know, like Liz Cheney, what she says.
PAUL: So, there are some people in McCarthy circles who say, you know what, he doesn't have -- he doesn't have any leverage here. I mean, the Democrats did strip Marjorie Taylor Greene of a committee assignments. She's still very transparently vocal. Does McCarthy have leverage in any of these -- any of these tactics?
LIPPMAN: Well, not that much leverage. It's more of the public platform. And so, when she said -- when she and others go to way too far, where it's unsustainable for him to stand by and just let her be unchallenged, then, he is forced to speak out and issue his press statements.
LIPPMAN: But she does not want this headache. And so, obviously, if you talk to him privately, he would be abhorrent at a lot of this stuff. But these are elected public officials. And so, what they say publicly, that is what's most important.
And, you know, he wants to focus on the Biden -- he wants to focus on stopping the Biden agenda, not talking about policing his own caucus.
PAUL: So, speaking of the Biden agenda, there was this executive order that President Biden signed yesterday, really targeting dominant companies in tech and in manufacturing. It's their 72 initiatives in it. It's been dubbed ambitious, it's been dubbed striking. Is this do you think -- will it be seen as a way to redefine what capitalism is?
LIPPMAN: I think that's the hope. And many people on the left to really are, you know, happy that Biden is taking these types of actions. They were pleasantly surprised because they thought that he's usually moderate on this stuff.
But capitalism, you some -- you need checks and balances. And I think, you know, going forward, it's going to be a little bit of a tough slog, because some of these things have to be addressed through Congress, not through executive actions.
And so -- but I think he views this as one of the challenges of our time. You know, big tech is not very welcomed in Washington. And, you know, Biden thinks that they need to be reined in to better serve the American people.
PAUL: All righty, Daniel Lippman, good to have you with us here this morning. Thank you.
LIPPMAN: Thank you.
SANCHEZ: A massive heat emergency is forcing a large section of the country to conserve power and water. How hot and dire could it get? We'll take you live at the CNN Weather Center after a quick break. Stay with us.
SANCHEZ: Relentless and stifling heat gripping much of the western United States right now. The threat of another record-breaking heatwave has more than 30 million people on alert. Temperatures expected to reach well into the triple digits. PAUL: Yes, let's be a little more definitive about that. In California, residents are being asked to conserve power and water. And Boris just mentioned those temperatures, they could surpass 130 degrees in Death Valley. That's 130.
CNN meteorologists live at the CNN Weather Center. Alison Chinchar. OK, these are extraordinary numbers, what is the likelihood we're really going to see that Allison?
ALLISON CHINCHAR, CNN METEOROLOGIST (on camera): It's actually pretty high. And I mean, I get it. Look, when you think of hot places, we all think of the desert southwest. But even for these areas, this is extreme by a big portion.
Take a look at this. Needles California hit 120 yesterday, breaking their previous record. Las Vegas hit 116, only one degree shy of their all-time record. Sacramento hitting 109. Even Grand Junction, Colorado hitting 107. That was actually their all-time record high.
And again, more of them are expected to continue today. Yesterday, Death Valley hit 130 degrees. Again, obviously Death Valley is a very hot place. But even for them, this is rare. They've only hit that 130- mark, at least that 130-mark two other times in history, although one of those times was actually just last year.
More of that heat is expected today. And over a very wide stretch. Notice these heat advisories and excessive heat warnings stretch from Northern Washington State all the way down to the Arizona-Mexico border.
So, you're talking a lot of people that are going to be dealing with extreme heat.
And again, not just five or six degrees above normal, but you're talking record-breaking all of these dots indicate the potential records all the way through Monday. And it's been hot for a very long period of time from June 7 to July 7.
Look at all of these records that were broken, not just daily records, but we had nearly 300 all-time record highs broken in a lot of places.
Take for example, Las Vegas. These are the numbers so far this month all over triple digits. Yesterday, only making it not to their all- time temperature by one degree. But that could happen later today.
But the question is why? Why do they keep seeing this prolonged heat for such an extended period of time? They have this heat, this dome of high pressure that's been basically sitting over the area.
Heat naturally rises, but under a high pressure dome, it pushes everything back down to the surface. So, unfortunately, we're likely going to see some of these temperatures continuing guys for the next several days.
PAUL: Oh, my goodness. Allison Chinchar, Thanks for the heads up. So, listen, there is confusion over booster shots this morning. Pfizer says it's working on one. The CDC and FDA say fully vaccinated people don't need it, at least not yet.
PAUL: What you do need to know? That's ahead.
PAUL: You know when it's summer, it means that there's some tropical fruit that is abundant right now. What packs the most nutritional punch though? CNN health reporter Jacqueline Howard takes a look in today's "FOOD IS FUEL".
JACQUELINE HOWARD, CNN HEALTH REPORTER (on camera): Tropical fruit is not only a great summer treat, but it's loaded with vitamin C and healthy antioxidants too.
HOWARD (voice-over): Just take mangoes. They're a nutritional powerhouse with vitamin C, vitamin A, and lots of other antioxidants.
Papayas are full of carotenes. That vibrant orange color is a clue that they're packed with nutrients and antioxidants. They're also bursting with fiber and vitamins.
Pineapple is chock full of vitamin C and may also help digestion. And the Acai berry has been a staple food for Amazon tribes for centuries. It's packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Now, avocado, yes, it's a fruit is popular on toast and salads. But it can also be made into a healthy smoothie. Avocados are filled with vitamins C, E, and B, omega three, and potassium.
And for a healthy summer dessert, put them all together in a fruit salad full of your family favorites.