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New Day Saturday

New COVID Cases Increasing In All 50 States Amid Vaccination Lag; Tennessee Fires Vaccine Chief After She Shares Policy On Vaccinating Teens; Johnson and Johnson Recalls Some Neutrogena And Aveeno Sunscreens; Wildfires Have Burned More Than One Million Acres Across The U.S. This Year; Justice Breyer Under Pressure To Give Up Supreme Court Seat; Prosecutors Press Trump Organization Executive To Cooperate; First Case OF COVID-19 Detected In Tokyo's Olympic Village. Aired 7-8a ET

Aired July 17, 2021 - 07:00   ET




BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning and welcome to your NEW DAY. I'm Boris Sanchez.

AMARA WALKER, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, everyone. I'm Amara Walker in for Christi Paul. COVID cases now on the rise in all 50 states as health officials raise the red flag now. President Biden has taken on big tech to crack down on COVID misinformation.

SANCHEZ: Plus, raging wildfires out west. The largest one burning around 24,000 acres a day. We'll take you to the front lines.

WALKER: And a CNN Exclusive, Supreme Court Justice Steven Breyer says he hasn't decided whether he is ready to retire and now some liberals are frustrated he won't step down.

SANCHEZ: And the countdown is on. The Olympics just one week away but the first case of COVID has already been detected inside the Olympic Village.

So grateful that you are with us this morning. It's Saturday July 17th. Always a pleasure to see you, Amara. Welcome.

WALKER: Nice to see you. Happy Saturday to you Boris and thanks for having me.

SANCHEZ: Of course. So, in the race against Coronavirus variants and the vaccine, there are new signs that the United States is far from the finish line. For the first time since January, cases are rising in all 50 states, as declining vaccination rates threaten the progress the United States has made since the life-saving shots were rolled out.

WALKER: The White House says that COVID-19 crisis is now a pandemic of the unvaccinated, with that group making up virtually all of those who are being hospitalized and dying. And the outlook is much worse in parts of the country struggling to get residents life-saving vaccines. The White House says misinformation on social media is costing lives and the administration is trying to push out their own message that vaccines are keeping people alive and out of the hospital.


OLIVIA RODRIGO, SINGER: Wear your mask and get your vaccines. I need to see Olivia Rodrigo live in Concert in the first row. Get your vaccines I'm so excited to, to her one of these days. And I'm just so excited to go to a concert, aren't you?

DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, WHITE HOUSE CORONAVIRUS TASK FORCE: I agree. I want to go to a concert for sure. For sure.


WALKER: Yes, Olivia Rodrigo's appearance is that the hope for the White House is to get the young people to come out and get vaccinated. CNN's Natasha Chen is following all the latest COVID headlines from Birmingham, Alabama, which is one of the states lagging in vaccinations and seeing cases spike. Natasha officials now scrambling to try to keep this from getting any worse, what's the latest?

NATASHA CHEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Amara, the state health officials are telling me this is an extremely disturbing trends that they're seeing. And unfortunately, Alabama is not alone in this. Let's show you some maps to give you a big sense of what's happening in the big picture here. If you look at the entire United States, the new cases in the past week compared to the previous week, they're -- all the states, all 50 states are seeing increases.

In Alabama, specifically, in the past week, the new cases actually more than doubled compared to the previous week. And if you're looking at the number of percentage of people vaccinated across the United States, you can see that in the northeast of a large percentage of those states are vaccinated. And in the southeast, that's where you're seeing some of the least vaccinated states including Alabama at about a third, 34 percent.

And the Coronavirus cases in Alabama. If we look at the, the seven day average of daily change, you can see that there are a lot of orange red spots there. So, not looking good for the, the health officials in this state and across the country. Here's what officials are saying about this deadly combination of the Delta variant spreading and many people still choosing to be unvaccinated.


DR. CATHERINE O'NEAL, CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER, OUR LADY OF THE LAKE REGIONAL MEDICAL CENTER: It's coming for us it's a beast. That's what we're seeing in the hospital. That's why we're nervous.

JEFFREY ZIENTS, WHITE HOUSE COVID-19 RESPONSE COORDINATOR: Unvaccinated Americans are not protected against serious illness, hospitalization and death. And we're seeing it in the data. Unvaccinated Americans account for virtually all recent COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths.


CHEN: Here in Alabama, some of the least vaccinated age groups are young people 18 to 29-year-olds, only just under a quarter of them have initiated their first dose of a vaccine. The assistant state health officer told me yesterday she said the virus is not really respectful of you just because of your age. And so, there is a targeted effort now to reach younger people.

That's why we're at a high school that's having a vaccine clinic pop up event today, where you know, the first few people get Doordash gift cards. The state is having a TikTok contest, where people under the age of 30 can post a TikTok content, encouraging people to get vaccines and sharing their experiences in hopes to reach that audience. Amara and Boris.


SANCHEZ: Yes, a lot of different incentives out there for people to get vaccinated. The biggest one is just that it might save your life or the lives of your loved ones. Natasha Chen from Birmingham, Alabama. Thank you so much.

So, as cases rise, the White House's apparent frustration at social media companies is flaring up. Officials blaming social media companies for not doing enough to stop misinformation about COVID, and about vaccines.

WALKER: Now, President Biden says platforms like Facebook aren't doing enough and it's costing lives.


JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: They're killing people. I mean, it really, look, the only pandemic we have is among the unvaccinated, and that's killing people.


WALKER: Well, Facebook fired back in a statement saying, "We will not be distracted by accusations which aren't supported by the facts. The fact is that more than two billion people have viewed authoritative information about COVID-19 and vaccines on Facebook, which is more than any other place on the Internet."

SANCHEZ: I've also seen a lot of nonsense on Facebook, too. Anyway, joining us to discuss all things COVID is Dr. Lee Beers, she's the President of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Dr. Beers, a pleasure to have you on and get your perspective. We appreciate you getting up early for us. You saw what the President said there the White House pushing back against the spread of COVID vaccine misinformation online. I wonder how this problem specifically affects children and how you feel about this approach from the White House?

DR. LEE BEERS, PRESIDENT, AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PEDIATRICS: Yes, you know, this is something that pediatricians have really been facing, actually, for many, many years, even before the COVID-19 vaccine became available for adolescents and adults. You know, we're, we're, we're really always combating misinformation, particularly about vaccines, but about other health issues as well, and really becomes very dangerous. You know, it's, it's as a parent as a, as even as an adult, it's important to have good information to be able to make the right health decisions for you. And when you're getting misinformation, that really takes away your power to make good decisions for yourself and your families.

SANCHEZ: I want to put up a graphic that shows the different reasons that people have given for not getting vaccinated. And often it has to do with trust in authority. You see, I don't believe I need the vaccine, I don't trust the government, I want to wait and see if it's safe. The biggest reason more than half of people asked are concerned about possible side effects. When you see that, doctor, what do you think? How does it make you feel? I imagine it must be frustrating given how often you're out there putting out the message that this vaccine is safe.

BEERS: You know, it's frustrating on, on one level, but on another level, I understand people want good information, they really want to understand the health decisions that they're making. And I think, you know, what I would say is, is for anyone who's concerned about potential side effects or who's concerned, has questions about the vaccines, to really sit down and talk to your pediatrician if this is about your child, to talk to your own doctor if it is about yourself, and really ask those questions. This is this is what we do.

You know, we've spent a lifetime really preparing to take care of children and families and our patients and we want to sit and we want to answer your questions. And we're really happy to, to hear what your concerns are and talk, talk through that with you. I think it's really important to remember that, you know, the very rare side effects that that we may see with any vaccination are far outweighed by the danger of potentially getting, getting infected with a serious infectious disease.

SANCHEZ: Yes, and one of the really aggravating things about this is that a lot of misinformation is sort of supported tacitly by certain officials and politicians. I want to ask you about what happened in Tennessee this week. A top public health official there saying that she was fired after she distributed a memo saying that some teams could be eligible for the COVID vaccine without their parents' consent. The state also halted the advertising of all vaccines to minors. What does that mean for children's health care in the United States?

BEERS: Yes, you know, I mean, I think this is something we should all be concerned about when, when politics or politicians interfere with good public health decisions at that that's, that's dangerous for all of us. And it really puts our children and our communities at risk. We know there's a recent report actually out from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Georgetown Center for Children and Families that says that, that, that tells us that we're 11 million doses of routine childhood vaccinations have been missed over the pandemic. And we know that, you know, vaccinations are a really important tool

in our toolbox for keeping children healthy. And so, we need to be doing it you know, right now we need to be doing everything possible we can to help families get good information and get back to their doctors and get caught up on their routine childhood vaccines, but also their COVID vaccine if they're eligible for it. And so, what we need to be doing right now is, is making that easier, not breaking down barriers, not adding barriers or taking away information.


SANCHEZ: Doctor, I hope you don't mind I have a question that is totally unrelated to COVID. But I want to mine your expertise here. It's summertime, a lot of people are outside, Johnson and Johnson just recalled five Neutrogena and Aveeno sunscreen lines in the United States. They discovered low levels of a carcinogen in the products. What are you telling parents about this?

BEERS: Well, yes, no, I we've used these own sunscreens in our own household and full disclosure, but, but I think there's a couple of things. First of all, you know, this is an example of the company really operating out of an abundance of caution the levels of benzene and sunscreen are not high enough that we would expect there to really truly be any long term problem.

And so, you know, what I would say to parents is if you have these sunscreens at home, get, get rid of them as the company recommends but don't lose sleep over it. I would also say sun protection continues to be really important, particularly you know, right now in D.C., it's in the high 90s. So, make sure that you're, you're wearing your sunscreen and protecting yourself and your, your children against sun damage.

SANCHEZ: And stay hydrated too, always a good idea to have a cold drink nearby on a warm day. Dr. Lee Beers, thank you so much for the time.

BEERS: Great, thank you so much for having me. I really appreciate it.

SANCHEZ: Of course. So, still to come this our apocalyptic scenes, dozens of wildfires burning in the West. We're going to show you how one community in California is coping with unrelenting danger.

WALKER: Plus, with just six days to go before the opening ceremony of the Tokyo games, the Olympic Village seeing its first Coronavirus case. We're live in Japan with the latest.



SANCHEZ: We are 16 minutes past the hour, one million acres that's how much land has already been scorched by wildfires across the western United States just this year. Right now, active fires are burning in 12 states with Oregon seeing the worst of it.

WALKER: The bootleg fire, the largest burning in the country right now is just seven percent contained. Extreme wildfire behavior is forcing evacuations and putting fire crews to the test. And as the historic hot and dry conditions worsen, so does the situation for both the people who live out West and the men and women tasked with saving them from the flames. CNN's Senior National Correspondent Sarah Sidner reports now from the front lines.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The entire town was evacuated.

SARA SIDNER, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is the second time in just eight months Kathy Catron's hometown has lost more than a dozen homes to wildfire.

KATHY CATRON, AFFECTED BY WILDFIRE: It sounds like a freight train coming down the mountain. The flames are coming at you. The smoke rolls over you it's all of a sudden Stark. All you see is this big, huge orange ball of flames all down the hole. Everywhere in front of you everywhere you look.

SIDNER: Catron is a volunteer fire chief of this town of about 600 residents. She is often the first one to call residents to tell them their home is gone.

KELLY GROSS, DOYLE RESIDENT: I'm still kind of numb. I mean, after losing everything that I worked for and everything all these years, it's gone. And everybody says, oh, it's so replaceable and stuff like, well, no, a lot of it isn't.

SIDNER: Saturday, Kelly Grosso lost one of the 16 homes burned in Doyle. Everyone thought the danger was over. But on Monday, the fire came roaring back, devouring more homes. Chief Catron and several residents were angry that air drops from state and federal agencies didn't come earlier.

CATRON: That we were like the Lone Ranger that because a lot of the engines weren't where they should have been and weren't down there. You know, maybe. And I was, at that point, I was like I was ready to say, I can't do this anymore.

SIDNER: Apocalyptic fire scenes are appearing more and more across the west. So far this year. 67 large fires across 12 states have burned an area nearly five times the size of New York City.

DENNIS SMITH, CAL FIRE CAPTAIN: The frequency of fires has skyrocketed.

SIDNER: Cal Fire Captain Dennis Smith has spent 25 years battling some of the biggest blazes in the state of California.

SMITH: We used to get some what you would call career fires maybe once every few years and we're seeing career fires, you know, 100,000-plus acres is a common occurrence every year now.

SIDNER: It's the new normal.

SMITH: The resources are spread through the state as we're burning from the Oregon border down to Mexico.

SIDNER: California is on track to have an even more devastating fire seasons in 2020, which was the worst on record with 4.1 million acres chart.

CHRIS TRINDADE, DEPARTMENT CHIEF, CAL FIRE: Being from California I'm sure you hear that this fire season is going to be the worst fire season right? Every year we hear that.

SIDNER: Which means their grueling work must go on for longer in days of 100-plus temperatures in some places.

And once the big flames are smothered, days of intricate work begin on hidden hotspots. There is one goal in mind, save lives and then property.

Are you proud you look around this entire house and it's charred 360 around this house, but the house? Perfect.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, the house is still standing.

SIDNER: But 250 miles away and Doyle, the local fire volunteers are devastated and residents are worried. They're at the beginning of what used to be the start of fire season. Sara Sidner, CNN, Doyle, California.


WALKER: Just a snippet of the incredible work the fire volunteers and firefighters are doing let's talk to Joseph Tomlinson, he is a Former Member of the Los Padres Hot Shots an elite forest service, wildland firefighting crew in California. He's also the author of "Triangle of Fire." Joseph, good morning to you. Thank you so much for waking up with us here on NEW DAY. You heard it there from our Sara Sidner. I mean, this year's fire season has just begun and it's already really bad. That is what's been anticipated is extremely hot, extremely dry. We're dealing with climate change. There's a drought, what are the biggest challenges facing fire crews right now in the western U.S.?

JOSEPH TOMLINSON, FORMER MEMBER OF LOS PADRES: Good morning, Amara. Amara. I'm sorry, the, the biggest issue with the crews is they're, they're spread super thin. There's -- the fires go on and on, and there. There's just no end in sight. The fuels are extremely dry. The world, the wilderness is not getting any rain. The, you know, one of the things I think people back east that are there in in downpours and drenched don't really quite understand how dry the western U.S. is where the trees are dying and the trees are skinny in the forest, and it's just, it's just a tinderbox.

WALKER: Yes, and speaking to that point and, and drawing from your experience as a former hotshot firefighter, which means I mean, some people may not know what a hotshot firefighter does. I mean, you fought fires in the most dangerous, rugged, remote places. You basically go where the fire equipment can't go. You're hiking, you know, 10s and 20s 30 miles with 50 pounds of equipment on your back. How has the job of a hot shot firefighter changed as a result of these worsening fire seasons?

TOMLINSON: Fire Hotshots are all hand crews, you're using chainsaws, and polanskis, and shovels. So, it's all by hand your, your, you know, firefighters are dropped off in remote areas, either but via helicopter or hiking in. And so, it's actually one of the, the throwback positions where technology hasn't really caught up. Because when you're when you're 30 miles away from the nearest civilization, there's your, you're just reliant on, on your hand tools and your, your teammates. So it's, it's actually kind of a wild thing that when you think about 2021 that people are fighting, fighting these huge mammoth fires, really with, with, with machinery that's, you know, 50 years old.

WALKER: Yes, with their hands no less. I mean, hot shots. You don't take on life risking jobs, working, what 24 hour days, and people would assume that those kinds of jobs, this is a federal job make a lot of money. But that's not the case. At all. I was looking at the numbers, the United States Forest Service pays Hotshots. $38,000, if I'm correct, and state pay is 70,000. That's what I heard in a Senate hearing. I want to play sound for you from President Biden at a meeting with Western Governors just a few weeks ago regarding that, take a listen.


BIDEN: Last week, I learned that some of our federal firefighters are being paid less than $13.00 an hour. Come on, man, this is -- that's unacceptable to me. And I'm meeting directly my team to take decisive action to fix it. So, today we're announcing what I still think is not enough. This year, we're going to provide a retention incentive that's going to ensure federal what, wildland fires, our firefighters are making at least $15.00 an hour and provide for additional 10 percent bonuses for those working on the front lines.


WALKER: At least $15.00 an hour and a 10 percent bonus, does that sound like enough to you?

TOMLINSON: Not by a longshot. The, you know, the Forest Service has always prided itself on, on being utilizing all you know resources for, for, you know, logging and grazing and livestock, and the firefighters within the Forest Service are, are not even designated as firefighters. They're their job title is actually Forestry Technician. And you know, if you think about it, there's, there's local restaurants that are they're paying people $15.00 an hour, which, which is a fair wage. And unfortunately, the hot shots are that are out there working there, they're solely reliant on working thousands of hours of overtime every year just to, to, to make ends meet.


WALKER: And that begs the question, I'm sorry to cut you off, because we're running out of time, Joseph, but I mean, how to get people to stay in these jobs. I mean, there's a shortage of Hotshot firefighters, while the fires are getting worse. What are your former colleagues telling you about how they feel in about why some of them are quitting?

TOMLINSON: Well, there's, there's a lot of people that are discouraged. And, you know, keeping retention has always been difficult. It's such a physical lead demanding job, that, you know, there's always turnover in the crews. But even with long term, long term employees, they, it's, it's, it's very difficult to retain the experienced leadership. And it's, it's, it's some somewhat of an issue, the, you know, psychologically, mentally, the demands of the positioner are, are getting worse and worse with these extended, you know, nonstop fires. Just the mental wear breakdown is really tough.

WALKER: It's not just physical, which is monumental the backbreaking work, but you're also talking about mental challenges as well for these firefighters on the frontlines. Joseph Tomlinson, we appreciate you joining us. Thank you for this conversation.

TOMLINSON: Thank you.

SANCHEZ: We're following some news just into CNN from the northeast. Boston Fire Department rescue teams are searching for a missing person right now. Following an early morning boating accident in the harbor there. Seven people were rescued around 3:00 this morning.

Five of those were taken to the hospital, both the Coast Guard and Massachusetts Port Authority are assisting in this search. Of course, we're going to stay on top of this and bring you any new information as we get it. Up next, a CNN Exclusive: Justice Steven Breyer setting the record straight, what he says about the question of his possible retirement next.



BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Some liberal groups are frustrated after Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer told CNN that he has not made a decision on his potential retirement.

AMARA WALKER, CNN ANCHOR (on camera): For months, liberal groups have called on Breyer to step down while Democrats control the Senate. CNN's Joan Biskupic spoke exclusively with Breyer about the speculation surrounding his place on the court.

JOAN BISKUPIC, CNN LEGAL ANALYST (on camera): Good morning. Yes. There's been so much speculation around what Justice Breyer would do. Is he about to leave the bench and give President Joe Biden his first opportunity to name a lifetime appointee to the Supreme Court?

BISKUPIC (voice-over): So, I went up to New Hampshire, and I asked him directly as we sat over coffee. Are you going to retire? Have you made a decision? And he said, no. He had not made a decision yet.

He didn't give me a timetable, whether it would be next year or in the future at some point. But I did ask him, and he answered, what the factors would be in that decision. He said first, his health. He turns 83 next month, but he's a pretty vigorous 82-year-old. He hasn't had the kind of health problems that Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg did with cancer. He's pretty vigorous. He jogs, he meditates. But he's, you know, he's still in his 80s now. And his second consideration, the court.

Justice Breyer is very concerned about the integrity of the Supreme Court, and its image in the American eye. And I think he wants to remove his decision from politics.

Now, as you know, it's very hard to remove this decision from politics, because so many liberals are clamoring for him to leave the bench and allow President Biden to make an appointment while there's a Democratic Senate.

Theoretically, the Senate will still be in Democratic hands next year before the midterm elections, but it's a very slim majority, a one- vote majority. And that's why some liberals think he's rolling the dice.

But one last thing I want to mention, and that's the new role that Justice Breyer has at the court. He's the senior liberal. And in that position, he's able to assign more opinions, he speaks earlier in the conferences, he has more ability to influence the debate and try to bring consensus to what is otherwise a very polarized court: six conservatives, three liberals.

BISKUPIC (on camera): And Justice Breyer feels that he has a role to play here. Boris, Amara?

WALKER: Fascinating exclusive interview. Joan Biskupic, thank you.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi and several members of Congress will be in San Diego today for the christening of a navy ship named in honor of late Congressman John Lewis.

SANCHEZ: Yes, after a long battle with pancreatic cancer, the lawmaker and civil rights icon passed away one year ago today.

Now, the future USNS John Lewis is a refueling ship that's the first of its class. Eventually, all John Lewis class ships are going to be named for prominent civil rights leaders and activists.


WALKER: I love that.

Up next, New York prosecutors are stepping up the pressure on another Trump executive. Who is it and will that person flip on Trump?


WALKER: Prosecutors investigating former President Trump and his company are keeping up the pressure on top Trump organization executives trying to get them to cooperate. But are they getting any takers? SANCHEZ: Yes, Matthew Calamari is among a small group of top executives with a close relationship to Trump, who could possibly help in the ongoing investigation, though his lawyers say he has nothing to offer.

CNN's Paula Reid has the details.

PAULA REID, CNN SENIOR LEGAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Good morning, Boris and Amara.

Well, Matthew Calamari is the Chief Operating Officer at the Trump organization. He would obviously be a very valuable witness to prosecutors investigating alleged


REID: Well, Matthew Calamari is the chief operating officer at the Trump Organization. He would obviously be a very valuable witness to prosecutors investigating alleged criminal activity within that company. But at this point, he's certainly given no indication that he would be willing to cooperate.

REID (voice-over): We know that in the two weeks since prosecutors filed those charges against the company and its CFO, they've really been focused on Mr. Calamari and trying to secure his cooperation.

One of the big problems for prosecutors in this investigation is that they are two years -- two years into this investigation, and they still don't have a cooperating witness inside the Trump Organization. And they really need a cooperating witness inside the company if they want to pursue charges against the former president and or anyone in his family, really.

A former president, we know, he doesn't leave a paper trail, the man doesn't e-mail. So, in order to bring charges successfully, they would likely need someone who was in the room where it happened, someone who saw him making decisions, and who could credibly testify to that.

Now, would Calamari flip? It seems highly unlikely, especially if he's not charged. This is someone who's worked for the former president for decades. He went from working security, all the way up to becoming one of the top executives.

He's repeatedly declared how much he loves former President Trump and enjoys working for him.

REID (on camera): Now, could he potentially be charged with crimes? Well, we know from our reporting that he has been under scrutiny for possibly not paying taxes, both he and his son work for the company. And there are questions from investigators about whether they properly paid taxes on benefits that they received in addition to their compensation.

At this point, though, based on our reporting, it's not clear that prosecutors really want to pursue charges against either one of these men. Now, I asked Calamari's attorney, would he ever cooperate against the former president? And the attorney said, cooperate about what?

The crux of their defense for Mr. Calamari is that he wasn't involved in financial decisions. He was a security guy, they say. He was dealing with cameras and doormen.

But of course, when you're a top executive, one would expect that you'd have some working knowledge of the finances of a company.

But at this point, it's not clear the prosecutors really want to pursue that question. Boris, Amara.

SANCHEZ: Paula, thank you so much.

Up next, the Tokyo Olympics are set to start one week from today under the cloud of a surging COVID pandemic. So, can Japan safely host the Summer Games? We'll take you to Tokyo, next.



SANCHEZ: Six days to go until the start of the Tokyo Olympics, but the world is wondering if these games are actually going to happen as planned because officials have already reported the first case of coronavirus inside the athlete's village.

WALKER: Yes, where a thousands of people will be staying. The person is an overseas visitor and is now in quarantine. That's all we know right now. But with the total of 45 COVID-19 cases linked to the Tokyo Games, concerns are growing that the Olympics could become a super spreader event.

Let's go now to CNN's Blake Essig, live in Tokyo this morning. Hi there, Blake. So, what more do we know?

BLAKE ESSIG, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Yes, Boris, Amara, so far, 45 people, as you mentioned, involved with the games have tested positive for COVID-19 after arriving in Japan. With the first case being reported today from inside the Olympic Village, as you guys mentioned, at this point, all we know is that the person who tested positive isn't believed to be an athlete and that they have been taken into quarantine outside of the village.

ESSIG (voice-over): A positive cases have come from athletes, coaches, contractors, and delegation members from various countries including Uganda, Serbia, Israel, and Nigeria.

The member from the Nigerian team has been hospitalized, and while this is only the first case, requiring hospitalization, one of the big concerns for medical professionals and the general public is that the potential strain that it could pose on the healthcare system here.

Now, it's important to remember, even though an estimated 80 to 85 percent of the people living in the Olympic Village are vaccinated, likely wouldn't end up in the hospital if they become infected. Still, only about 20 percent of Japan's population has been fully vaccinated. That means a lot of the people living here are vulnerable if the Olympics turned into a super spreader event.

ESSIG (on camera): And with cases already surging nationwide, there's a lot of anxiety just this past week. The daily case count in the capital here hit its highest mark in six months. And experts fear that the current wave of infection forming could be Japan's worst yet.

Because of health and safety concerns, these Olympic Games have been and continue to be deeply unpopular with the majority of the Japanese people who feel organizers are holding the games against the will of the people. And when all is said and done, it's the people of Japan will be left to deal with the consequences.

ESSIG (voice-over): As a result, that buzz and excitement that typically is associated with the Olympics simply does not exist here.

And despite all that, IOC President Thomas Bach, who is -- who is incredibly unpopular here in Japan, says canceling the Olympics is not an option.

ESSIG (on camera): And that the risk of COVID-19 spreading because of the Olympics is zero. Boris, Amara?

WALKER: The risk is zero? That's interesting. And instead of exciting, as you said, there's obviously a lot of concern when you say there's only 20 percent of the population there in Japan fully vaccinated.



WALKER: Blake Essig, thank you.

The New York Yankees were back playing last night, one day after COVID outbreak forced them to postpone their game against Boston.

SANCHEZ: Yes, this was the first MLB game postponed because of the virus since April.

Andy Scholes joins us now. Andy, the team saying that most of the positives are actually breakthrough cases.

ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Yes. Good morning, guys. So, this is the second time actually the Yankees have dealt with an outbreak on the team. Back in May, three coaches and several members of the support staff tested positive. Those were breakthrough cases as well.

SCHOLES (voice-over): This time around, All-Star Aaron Judge, one of six Yankees players that have tested positive and been placed on the COVID-19 list. Manager Aaron Boone says a few of the players are showing mild symptoms, but some are totally asymptomatic.

The Yankees, one of 23 major league teams to have reached the 85 percent vaccinated threshold, which allowed them to relax COVID protocols. Remember, this is coming off the all-star break.

New York, they were shut out 4-0 by the Red Sox last night. Yankees now nine games out of first. Pitcher Gerritt Cole says the team feels like they've been hit by an invisible microscopic truck right now.

All right, New York not the only Major League club dealing with a potential outbreak. Coming off the all-star break, the Rockies playing the Dodgers last night without four players and manager Bud Black due to COVID health and safety protocols and contact tracing. The shorthanded Rockies lost to the Dodgers 10-4.

All right, the U.S. men's basketball team, meanwhile, having to make some last minute changes to the roster before heading to Tokyo next week. Bradley Beal out due to COVID protocols.

SCHOLES (on camera): While Kevin Love announcing he's not going to go to the Olympics because he's not feeling 100 percent healthy.

SCHOLES (voice-over): Those who are being replaced by Nuggets' center, JaVale McGee and Spurs forward Keldon Johnson.

All right, the women's team, meanwhile, getting another major wake-up call last night, losing to Australia 70-67. Breanna Stewart missing a game-time three-pointer at the buzzer. This is the second straight loss for the U.S. after the WNBA All-Star beat them on Wednesday. First time since 2011 the women have lost two straight games.

All right, it's moving day at the British Open and everyone is chasing Louis Oosthuizen, the 2010 open champ, 11 under par. Breaking the record for the lowest score through two rounds.

If Oosthuizen wins, it also break the record for the longest gap between open wins 11 years.

In the meantime, the rivalry between Brooks Koepka and Bryson DeChambeau just continues to get better and better. Thursday, DeChambeau complained about his driver saying, "It sucks."

Well, listen to what Koepka said yesterday after his round.


BROOKS KOEPKA, FOUR-TIME MAJOR WINNER: I drove the ball great, love my driver. It's -- everything is going really well.


SCHOLES (on camera): I love how he just mixed in there, Boris, love my driver. I tell you what? This rivalry between Captain DeChambeau, probably the best thing golf has going right now. Just praying that one day they get paired together for a final round.

WALKER: Oh, that would be explosives.


BORIS: Oh, love this (INAUDIBLE). Yes.


BORIS: I was expecting one of them to walk in the background of the other's interview.


SCHOLES: You always do right?

BORIS: Again, maybe some eye-rolling. Andy Scholes, thank you so much.

SCHOLES: All right.

BORIS: Ahead next hour, as COVID cases rise and vaccination rates decline, the White House is launching an offensive against coronavirus disinformation. NEW DAY continues in just a moment.

WALKER: But first, a quick programming note, the conflict in Jerusalem has been centuries in the making. A new CNN original series takes you back 3,000 years through six epic battles for the most coveted city in the world.

"JERUSALEM: CITY OF FAITH AND FURY" premieres tomorrow at 10:00 Eastern and Pacific, only on CNN. Here is a preview.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If you don't know the history of Jerusalem, it's very hard to understand what's going on there today.

ANNOUNCER: A story centuries in the making.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The conflict that we are experiencing today, you've seen it for thousands of years.

ANNOUNCER: Six epic battles.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There was a bloody massacre.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is desert combat at its worst.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Israel had to fight for its existence.

ANNOUNCER: Three major faiths.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People believe that they must possess it, absolutely.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And a spiritual significance inevitably raises the stakes.

ANNOUNCER: The most coveted city in the world.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's the equivalent of a magical place.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People who are said to have conquered the world have swept through the city.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's the only city that exists on heaven and earth. Exists twice.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This story hasn't ended.


ANNOUNCER: 3,000 years. One city. "JERUSALEM: CITY OF FAITH AND FURY". Tomorrow at 10:00 only on CNN.



WALKER: More time and home often means more home-cooked meals. And in today's "FOOD AS FUEL", CNN health reporter Jacqueline Howard shares healthy dishes that only take two ingredients to make.

JACQUELINE HOWARD, CNN HEALTH REPORTER (on camera): If you want to limit your trips to the grocery store, just shorten the ingredient list. These dishes just require two ingredients.

Let's start with breakfast. You can make pancakes with just bananas and eggs. Use one large egg with three or four tablespoons of mashed banana. Blend together, then pour it on a skillet.

For an afternoon snack, make Apple chips. Grab two large Fuji or Gala apples, thinly sliced them, bake in the oven at 225 degrees for an hour. Then, sprinkle cinnamon on top, bake another hour.