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New Day Saturday

U.S. Surpasses Grim Milestone Of 700,000 COVID-19 Deaths; Merck: New Pill Cuts Risk of COVID Hospitalization, Death by Half; California to Require COVID-19 Vaccine for Students; New Bodycam Footage Shows What Gabby Petito Told Police About August Domestic Abuse; Police Set Up Efforts to Get Guns Off the Streets of Chicago. Aired 6-7a ET

Aired October 02, 2021 - 06:00   ET




CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning and welcome to your New Day. I'm Christi Paul.

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Hey Christi. I'm Boris Sanchez. There's a potential game changer in the fight against coronavirus that could be key in returning to normalcy as the U.S. reaches yet another grim milestone 18 months into the pandemic.

PAUL: Also, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is forced to delay a vote on that infrastructure bill amid some clashes within a party. How President Biden may have given his feuding party a little more time to deliver.

SANCHEZ: And new details in the death of Gabby Petito and the search for her still missing fiance. We have new body cam footage revealing what she told police about a fight with Brian Laundrie.

PAUL: Snail Mail, we call it that for a reason. And it's going to take even longer to get your packages. Why the pace of deliveries could depend on what state you live in.

Welcome to Saturday, October 2, I hear that it feels like October where you are.

SANCHEZ: It does. It changed from one day to the next and I was not ready, Christi. I know you enjoy the chiller weather. I am not a big fan.

PAUL: All right, sorry. We'll have to switch studios someday. OK, listen, we have to talk about what's new this morning. The United States has passed this grim milestone now, 700,000 deaths from COVID- 19. That's more than any other country in the world. And take a look at this, 700,000 white flags on the National Mall to memorialize every one of those people that has died.

SANCHEZ: Yeah, it is a moving display. There is good news to share with you this morning in the fight against coronavirus. Drugmakers, Merck and Ridgeback say they've developed an antiviral pill that cuts the risk of COVID hospitalization and death by 50%. That's according to a study by the companies. If it winds up getting approved, it could be the first oral medication of its kind and would have huge implications and the fight to eradicate COVID-19.


DR. SCOTT GOTTLIEB, FORMER FDA COMMISSIONER: This is the most impactful result that I remember seeing an orally available drug in the treatment of a respiratory pathogen, perhaps ever. I think getting an oral pill that couldn't inhibit viral replication that can inhibit this virus is going to be a real game changer.


PAUL: This doesn't diminish the need for vaccinations. Health official stress that is the key to getting through this pandemic here. CNN's Polo Sandoval.


POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): As early as next fall, California students will be required to be COVID-19 vaccinated since the state's governor Gavin Newsom made the announcement Friday saying his state is the first in the nation to add a COVID vaccine to the existing list of inoculations required for in-person learning.

GOV. GAVIN NEWSOM, (D) CALIFORNIA: I want to get this behind us, get this economy moving again, make sure our kids never have to worry about getting colds and they can't go to school the next day, because one of the kids or a staff member were tested positive.

SANDOVAL: The governor expects the new requirements will be phased in by groups, grades 7 through 12 and K through Grade 6 only after the FDA fully approves the vaccine for that cohort. Parents anxiously waiting to vaccinate children under 12 remain hopeful that that may happen by Halloween.

There's also optimism about what may become the first oral medication to cut the risk of COVID-19 hospitalization or death by nearly half.

Molnupiravir is not a vaccine, but an antiviral designed to fight the virus early after COVID diagnosis according to experts. Merck, the pills manufacturer says it's seeking emergency use authorization from the FDA as soon as possible.

RICHARD BESSER, FORMER CDC ACTING DIRECTOR: I'm very excited about a drug going forward to FDA for consideration. We do need better treatments. We do need oral therapy. It's not a replacement for vaccination. Prevention is the best way to go. But when people get COVID, we need to be able to provide them with better treatment.

SANDOVAL: With about 77% of eligible Americans having had at least one vaccine dose, health officials remain hopeful those who need a second dose will get one. In New York City, the deadline for teachers to comply with the city's vaccination mandate has come and gone. More than 90% of the roughly 70,000 teachers in the public school system received a shot according to the city. Those who didn't include Stephanie Edmonds, who now face being forced onto unpaid leave.

STEPHANIE EDMONDS, NYC TEACHER WHO DEFEND VACCINATION MANDATE: Unless anything changes come Monday, now they've decided that I'm a threat to public health. And I think that goes against some of the very basic values of this country. Of course, we need to balance freedom and safety, but I would say this is a is an overstep.

SANDOVAL: The head of the city's Department of Education tells CNN the few teachers who remained defiant to the mandate can still reconsider.

MEISHA PORTER, NEW YORK CITY SCHOOLS CHANCELLOR: We hope and look forward to teachers continuing to get vaccinated over the weekend. Because if they do, we look forward to welcome them back into their classrooms. We want them with their students.


SANDOVAL: In addition to considering Pfizer shots for people under 12, an FDA vaccine Advisory Committee plans to take up the issue of Moderna and J&J boosters in the coming weeks. Also, on tap discussions about data on a mix and match booster approach.

Polo Sandoval, CNN, New York.


PAUL: So primary care physician, Dr. Saju Matthew is with us now. Saju, first of all, I want to get your thoughts on this new, this Merck option that we're talking about here, the antiviral, the oral option, as opposed to say, what we have known up to this point, the monoclonal option that we have. How much hope, how confident are you that this could be, maybe not a game changer, but can certainly help just give us all some normalcy?

DR. SAJU MATTHEW, PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIAN: Yeah, good morning, Christi. Listen, I've always used the word cautiously optimistic when there's some type of bright information on the horizon for COVID. But I will actually take out the word caution and say I am actually very optimistic. And the reason I say that is, we already are familiar with this drug called Tamiflu, Christie, that I as a family physician, that's prescribed probably 100,000 times to people with the flu. This is very much a similar drug. It's an oral pill, and you would take it in the early course of illness. So, remember, this is to treat COVID, not to prevent COVID. So, vaccine is what we should be focusing on. But this can give hope to a lot of people.

Right now, when somebody's sick in my office, I immediately tried to schedule depending on their risk factors, the antibody infusion, but for that, you have to go into the hospital. It's an IV or an injection. With this, it's an oral pill, one pill twice a day for five days. I still have some concerns like possible drug resistance. I want to know more about the data. This was released by the pharmaceutical company, but overall, Christi, I am optimistic this morning. PAUL: All right. We know the FDA, the independent vaccine advisory committee is holding three meetings this week. They're talking about boosters, and they're talking about this vaccine for kids five to 11. I want to get your thoughts on this because I'm wondering amongst the doctors, amongst the medical community, are there any concerns about that vaccine for children five to 11? Are you comfortable in the trials, let's say, that are out there?

MATTHEW: Yes, I mean, I'm definitely comfortable in the trials, I'm comfortable in the results that we're getting, a very strong antibody response in the younger kids. Listen, the biggest difficulty, Christi, with children has been as we get into the younger ages 5, 6, 8 and 9, you have to make sure that we find that right dose, and I think we've hit it right on the nail, so to speak, it's 1/3, the dose of what we give adults, adults get 30 micrograms, and kids will only be getting 1/3 of 30, which is 10 micrograms for the younger children.

So, I think that this is absolutely not going to have any safety issues. The problem is going to be convincing parents, you know, 30% of parents are only planning on giving the younger kids this vaccine, that's going to be the biggest hurdle.

PAUL: So, speaking of kids, last night, the Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor denied the request from some teachers to block New York City School vaccine mandates for all public-school house, then you've got California as well, the first state is requiring vaccinations for all of their K through 12 students.

Kids are not blind, though, to the political discourse that we've been seeing, right? I mean, I'm sure that you see that. There is the physical standpoint of this. We know masks work. But what is your level of concern at this stage of the pandemic for the psychological aspect for children? They've heard a lot, they probably heard it from their parents, they've heard it at school. What is your concern for them? And what do we need to be doing for kids right now?

MATTHEW: I mean I think it's going to be really important to communicate with kids. I mean, kids are brilliant. They're smart, just like you said, they are so aware of what's going on social media, what your kids telling about the vaccine and masking. And I think one of the biggest difficulties would be, if there's almost a discordance in the home where the parents are not willing to have their children masks, but the kids have developed their own idea that masks actually work. And I've seen those families where it's really difficult to convince a 12-year-old who was crying and saying Dr. Matthew, my mom doesn't want me to wear a mask, but I know that this mask is going to help me, that becomes difficult anxiety and depression. I've probably prescribed more antidepressants in the last year than I have in the last five years, even for young teenagers. So, this is really a difficult issue but the most important thing we need to look for is communication, the parents communicating and also making sure there's an open communication between the school and the family.


PAUL: Yeah. And trying to keep it civil communication makes all the difference. Dr. Saju Matthew, we appreciate you. Thank you.

MATTHEW: Thank you, Christi.

PAUL: The negotiations on Capitol Hill are at an impasse despite pressure from the White House. The question this morning, can moderates and progressives come together to get the President's agenda done.

SANCHEZ: Plus, we have new body cam video to share with you revealing more details about a fight between Gabby Petito and Brian Laundrie. The latest on this investigation after a quick break.


SANCHEZ: A dramatic high stakes week on Capitol Hill ends with not much to show for Democrats, no agreement in place, no votes on key elements of President Biden's agenda.


PAUL: Now the President is confident that trillion-dollar infrastructure bill and his sweeping economic package will be approved. He's just not sure when. And he emphasized that when doesn't matter. He made a red flag to Capitol Hill to encourage Democrats to find some common ground here. His visit gives them some breathing room and a little space to negotiate now.

SANCHEZ: Let's get live to Capitol Hill and CNN Congressional Reporter Daniela Diaz. Daniela, progressives and moderates trying to agree on a top line number, somewhere between $1.5 and $3.5 trillion that $2.1, $2.3 trillion plan floated as a potential solution here. Where do things stand right now?

DANIELLA DIAZ, CNN CONGRESSIONAL REPORTER: Well, guys, I really want to emphasize, Boris, and Christi, good morning, that this was popped out like probably one of the longest work weeks on Capitol Hill. And look, Democrats are not far from where they started when this week began. And that is really important here because this was one of the biggest tests of the Biden administration and democratic leaders including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, as they tried to navigate a uniting moderates and progressives to pass two infrastructure bills that are a priority for the Biden administration and historic, Biden's historic agenda.

One of these bills, of course, being a "hard infrastructure bill," it would improve the nation's roads, bridges. It's bipartisan. It's already passed the Senate. In fact, a lot of Republicans in the senate were behind this. So, the House wanted to vote on this moderate in the House, wanted to vote on this this week, so that he could go to President Joe Biden's desk and pass.

The other bill that progressives are in the house are fighting for, of course, is this economic bill, this tax and spending bill right now priced at $3.5 trillion. But part of the problem here is that moderate democratic senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema want to bring that price tag down, as you mentioned, Boris. So, the problem here is that progressives and moderates in the House, were trying to negotiate how they could pass these two bills. Progressives wanted to pass these two bills together, moderates wanted a vote on the bipartisan infrastructure bill this week. And that did not ultimately happen.

So, what did happen? Well, President Joe Biden came to the people's House, and he tampered down tempers, united Democrats, in his caucus, in the House on these issues, and told them that unless they negotiate with each other, neither of these bills will pass. So that is what happened yesterday. We watched real time, the Congress and House legislate on these issues. But again, I want to go back, the issue here is that two moderate democratic senators, Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema, they want to bring that economic bill price tag down from $3.5 trillion. In fact, Manchin has mentioned that he wants no more than $1.5 trillion.

Now, what's in this bill that progressives want? Well, it would be, have paid family and medical leave, it would have funding to combat climate change, it would expand the child tax credit, it has -- it would expand the nation's social safety net, which is why progressives really, really want this bill to pass.

But look, last night progressives emerged incredibly optimistic from their meeting with Biden and their own caucus meeting and take a listen to what Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, who leads the progressives in the House said last night and told Anderson Cooper about their optimism following this meeting with Biden.


REP. PRAMILA JAYAPAL, (D) CHAIRWOMAN, CONGRESSIONAL PROGRESSIVE CAUCUS: Six minutes, six days, six weeks, we're going to get this done. We need a little time to negotiate. There was a lot of time to negotiate the infrastructure bill. And you know, there were sceptics like me who said, I don't think it's going to get done and I was wrong. I'm happy to be wrong about that. Now, we need a little time to negotiate on this bill back better act, and I believe we will be able to do that.


DIAZ: So, as you're hearing there from Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, lots of optimism for progressive, they seem to feel that they won these negotiations and that they'll be able to, they bought themselves time to negotiate for this economic bill. They want to pass. But the bottom line here is, nothing really happened this week, except that they bought themselves 30 more days. They pass some funding that expired on Thursday night for surface transportation, they bought themselves 30 more days to continue to negotiate on this, because moderates and progressives want these bills passed.

SANCHEZ: Daniella Diaz, saturated in coffee, not getting much sleep the last few days. We appreciate your reporting. Thanks so much, Daniella.

PAUL: Thank you, Daniella. So, President Biden urging moderate and progressive Democrats as you heard there, trying to get them to find some common ground here. His visit to Capitol Hill came after some Democrats had urged him to take a more active role in the negotiations.

SANCHEZ: Yeah. CNN White House Reporter Jasmine Wright joins us now live. Jasmine, what's the level of urgency coming from the White House this morning? President Biden knows a lot is riding on this?


JASMINE WRIGHT, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: That's right. And look, President Biden sounded very optimistic yesterday and his message to his fellow Democrats on the House side, were keep your eyes on the prize to continue on my presidential agenda. And yesterday, when the President spoke to reporters afterwards, he made the case that it didn't matter how much time it would take his agenda is getting done, take a listen.


JOE BIDEN, U.S. PRESIDENT: (Inaudible) thousands of different questions and they're all legit. I'm telling you we're going to get this done. Doesn't matter whether it's been six minutes, six days, or six weeks, we're going to get it done.


WRIGHT: So, one lawmaker inside of a meeting with President Biden yesterday told me that his tone reminded him of that of a wise uncle, understanding but not demanding. He said that President Biden told lawmakers that both that social safety net expansion package has right now is priced at $3.5 trillion is going to have to go along with that bipartisan infrastructure vote. And he told lawmakers basically, now was the time to compromise, right? Not to waste this moment to make historic change. And a compromise could look like coming down off of that $3.5 trillion price tag somewhere potentially, in the $2 trillion amount just so that they can get something pass.

Now yesterday's visit to the Hill was President Biden's first to the Hill as President, of course, he addressed him as vice president. And really it marks the crescendo kind of his engagement with the Hill on this after a series of phone calls. And, you know, lawmakers coming to the Oval Office with a question coming next really is what does the White House do next? Well, they say that President Biden will hit the road, really pushing his agenda for the American people, as the White House really amounts a full court press trying to bring in those holdouts, Senator Manchin and Senator Sinema back into the fold so that they can all compromise and get his agenda moving. Because as of right now, even though they are optimistic, Boris and Christi, his agenda still hangs in the balance.

PAUL: Jasmine Wright, a lot going on. Thank you so much for walking us through it.

SANCHEZ: Thanks, Jasmine. Let's get some more perspective now from CNN Political Commentator, Errol Louis. He's also a political anchor at New York One and host of the, You Decide podcast.

Good morning, Errol, always great to see you bright and early. President Biden vowing that this is going to get done no matter how long it takes. But momentum is an important component to this effort. At what point do you think the White House starts to become uneasy about the chances of these two enormous bills getting passed?

ERROL LOUIS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Good morning, Boris. I think the President, because he did this for 36 years, has a fine sense of whether or not they're close to an agreement. He would not have risked his prestige by going to the Hill, if he didn't already understand that they were close. If you listen to what everyone is saying, on the one hand, you got $3.5 trillion on the high side, $1.5 trillion on the low side, they are likely going to compromise in the middle.

And honestly, Boris, I think what's going to happen and the White House has no particular reason to be uneasy about this is that there's going to be a lot of shifting of when certain programs phase in and phase out. So, for example, a Medicare dental benefit, as it is now some of the negotiation has it starting in the year 2028. Well, you can move the numbers around if you start some of these programs later, or if you sunset them sooner. I think that's what's going on now.

And so, we should pay probably less attention to the top line number and more attention to the very detailed implementation and sunsetting of particular programs. And there's a lot in there, of course, you know, there's the child tax credit. There is the support for community colleges. There's a lot of the different components of this, or what the legislators are actually working on much more so than just the top line number.

SANCHEZ: Yeah, that's a good point. And the other thing that has come to the forefront is the power that the progressive caucus has. It feels like it's become far more influential in the last few years and less willing to essentially tow to whatever speaker Nancy Pelosi wants. She should recalculate her strategy after promising their biggest vote on the infrastructure bill this week. What is this say to about a potential shift in the balance of power on the Democratic side?

LOUIS: Well, you know, we keep talking about how this might be Joe Biden's FDR moment. Well, in reality, Boris, it's America's FDR moment, meaning these folks didn't come out of nowhere. They fought in dozens of races, all across the country in rural districts, in urban districts from coast to coast. And that's why they have a sizable progressive caucus. And that's why they are insisting that they came to Washington to make serious change, to lift half of all poor children out of poverty, which is what the child tax credit would do, to make, you know, school lunches available to an additional 9 million kids. That's real serious stuff. And it affects everybody all over the country.

[06:25:31] So, these are folks who were saying, this is a once in a generation effort at a once in a generation opportunity to get some stuff done, and we're not going to just squander it and treat it like just any other vote. And I think that might be the surprise that Pelosi and the Democratic leadership are starting to see is that these people mean what they say. There's more of them, they're hanging together. This to them is what politics is all about.

SANCHEZ: And in that sense, which wing of the party is more electorally at risk if this doesn't go through? Would it be the moderates or the progressives, which, as you suggested, have seen a swelling of support?

LOUIS: Yeah, well, you know, it's interesting, I've talked with a number of members. And the reality is, history is not on the side of Democrats holding on to the House after the midterms. And so, there's a certain kind of fatalism that some might admit to if you get them in a quiet moment, that on average, the President's party loses something like 45 seats. And, you know, in that case, that would mean a sizable majority for the Republicans. So, this is their one and only chance, and that I think, is going to really guide a lot of the, frankly, the members who are sticking to their guns saying like, look, this is it, this is going to be the only chance that we get, and this might be the only chance in my whole political career to make these kinds of changes. So, I don't think those who want to hold on to their seats and hold on the majority could well be outnumbered by those who understand how pivotal and how fleeting this moment is. And I think that's why you see people digging in their heels, Boris.

SANCHEZ: A huge moment in American history. No question. We appreciate your giving us that perspective. Errol Louis, thanks so much. Stay with CNN. We'll be right back.



PAUL: So we've been paying real close attention to the search for Brian Laundrie after the death of Gabby Petito. And the body cam footage that's come out from their August domestic dispute -- a lot of people looking at that and wondering what was really going on as she --


PAUL: Spoke to police.

SANCHEZ: Yes, CNN's Jean Casarez walks us through that new footage on exactly what Gabby was saying to the responding officer.


JEAN CASAREZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): New questions tonight about Brian Laundrie and his interactions with family in the days around the disappearance of Gabby Petito. Brian and his parents visited the Fort De Soto camp ground the weekend of September 6th according to their attorney who now tells CNN, Brian's sister Cassie was also with them for a day. Cassie spoke to "ABC News" in an interview that aired September 17th.

CASSIE LAUNDRIE, BRIAN LAUNDRIE'S SISTER: We haven't been able to talk to him. I wish I could talk to him. Yes. I've cooperated every way that I can --

CASAREZ: CNN obtained records showing Laundrie's mother canceled a camping reservation made for two people on August 31st, the day before Brian returned home without Gabby. Later that week, she made a new reservation for three people. This as new body cam footage is providing insight into the strained relationship between Gabby Petito and Brian Laundrie.

Officers in Utah caught up with the couple in mid-August after a witness called police to report a domestic dispute.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So, there's two people that came to us and told us they saw him hit you.

CASAREZ: In the back of a police car, 22-year-old Petito tearfully claims she is the one who initiated that fight. After a few quick questions about her injuries --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Kind of looks like something hit you in the face and then over on your arm, shoulder, right here, that's new. That's kind of a new mark?


CASAREZ: The officers turned their focus on Petito's actions instead.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Were you attempting to cause him physical pain or physical impairment? What was the reason behind the slapping and that stuff?

PETITO: I was trying to get him to stop telling me to calm down.

CASAREZ: For nearly an hour, the police questioned the couple about their relationship separately, and determined Laundrie is the victim.

UNIDENTFIED MALE: So, at this point, you're the victim of a domestic assault, and even if --

CASAREZ: It is something even Laundrie finds surprising.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You don't know anyone --

BRIAN LAUNDRIE, GABBY PETITO'S FIANCE: I'm not going to pursue anything, she's my fiancee, I love her, it's just a little squabble.

CASAREZ: Ultimately, Laundrie is sent to a hotel for the night, and the police deemed the interaction a mental health crisis.

PETITO: I don't want to be separated.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you going to have anxiety?

PETITO: Yes -- no, we're a team, please.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's not, what is that?

PETITO: No, we're a team, please.


SANCHEZ: Difficult to watch that given what we know now, right?

PAUL: Yes --

SANCHEZ: Jean Casarez, thank you for that report.

PAUL: No doubt, and we know when it comes to domestic violence, it's just hard for -- a lot of times victims just try to protect alleged abusers. It's --

SANCHEZ: Right --

PAUL: Just a very sensitive issue. So, take a look at your screen here, that's Chicago. Police stepping up efforts to get guns off the streets after what's been a really violent Summer in that city. But there's a legal loophole allowing these guns to get into the hands of criminals. We'll talk about it, stay close.



PAUL: So Chicago is on pace to take a record number of guns off the streets this year. Well, now federal prosecutors are stepping up efforts to arrest the people who are supplying the guns to criminals.

SANCHEZ: Just this week, a grand jury indicted six people in nearby Indiana, charging them with illegally purchasing guns that were later used in crimes across Chicago.


And according to prosecutors, of 90 firearms purchased since November, 20 of them have been recovered at crime scenes. CNN's Omar Jimenez has more on the efforts to end what are known as straw purchases.


OMAR JIMENEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): In that eco-system of what's driving violence of what's leading to violence here in the city, where does the influx of guns fit into that?

DAVID BROWN, POLICE SUPERINTENDENT, CHICAGO: It is not a light subject for us. It is the -- in my opinion ground zero for gun violence is violent people in possession of weapons. JIMENEZ (voice-over): This year, Chicago is on pace to take a record

number of guns off its streets. On the other side of a Summer, that was among the deadliest in nearly a quarter century. Many of the weapons used in these shootings are initially purchased as legal commerce before changing hands.

BROWN: We want to interdict how it gets into the wrong hands and that, it leads us right into straw purchases. People who make blood money off of getting guns into the hands of felons, violent people who couldn't otherwise get that gun in their hands.

JIMENEZ: The gun that killed Chicago police officer Ella French in August, it was initially bought in Indiana before being transferred to the eventual alleged shooter who would go on to use it less than six months later, according to federal investigators.

KIM FOXX, STATE ATTORNEY FOR COOK COUNTY: One of the things that is unique to Chicago is the over proliferation of guns on our streets. Chicago has had a stubbornly unrelenting problem. Whether they come from Indiana, Wisconsin or as far east as West Virginia.

JIMENEZ (on camera): This Indiana gun store is being sued by the city of Chicago who alleges over a seven-year period, they've sold more than 850 recovered crime guns and about 180 guns to at least 40 people later charged with federal crimes in connection to these purchases, ignoring clear warning signs, the complaint alleges. Now, we reached out to the owners of this store here and they had no comment.

(voice-over): But while this is Indiana, it's basically an across-the- border suburb of Chicago, a little over 30 miles away, and it functions accordingly when it comes to straw purchases.

JOHN LAUSCH, U.S. ATTORNEY, NORTHERN DISTRICT OF ILLINOIS: The western suburbs of Chicago or northern Indiana is where most of our crime guns tend to come from here. Typically, what we see from straw purchasing is, you know, maybe one or two guns at a time. The ones we're really interested in are -- are they putting it to the hands of someone who they believe is going to commit a crime.

JIMENEZ: It's part of why Chicago is among the five cities at the center of the Department of Justice's newest anti-gun trafficking strike forces.

KRISTEN DE TINEO, SPECIAL AGENT IN CHARGE, ATF CHICAGO: That is one of the things that makes it so difficult to work these cases, as there are trafficking schemes out there that involve many parties or the guns do change hands legally a number of times before they are actually transferred to that person.

JIMENEZ: The ATF uses what's called the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network or NIBIN to link shootings by looking at the imprints on the cartridge casings of guns they recover, test-firing them, and if there is a match to casings found at other crime scenes, they can better find the gun's history.

DE TINEO: The difficulty comes as identifying that point where that gun leaves legal commerce and goes into the illegal marketplace.

JIMENEZ: On the frontend, there are few options.

LAUSCH: That's what we're trying to do, is deter people from actually, you know, lying on that form and then giving the gun to someone who shouldn't have it.

JIMENEZ (on camera): That's really the only preventative thing you can do at this point?

LAUSCH: That is.

BROWN: The penalties in the federal system need to be much more conveyed to people to discourage this idea that this is a harmless, mostly clerical administrative violation of the federal system. It is blood money.

JIMENEZ (voice-over): Omar Jimenez, CNN, Chicago.


SANCHEZ: Thanks to Omar for that report. Baseball fans are on the edge of their seats as the Giants and Dodgers vie for the top seed in the national league. So which team is going to clinch home-field advantage in the World Series? Coy has the highlights after a quick break.

PAUL: And CNN Heroes is marking its 15th anniversary. Well, one of our top 10 heroes from 2018 explains how being part of that group helped her grow her cause.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I was 14 when I started building memes, I was 23 when we were honored, and to get this award and to have our work shown in its full breath was just so incredible. And it really changed the narrative that we've been up against, that we were just kids, this was just a club, and know our entire heart and souls were poured into what we were doing at memes, and that we were having this large scale national impact. Since then, our budget has more than quadrupled. We were able to, thanks to a pretty great grant, invest more than $4.1 million in small restaurants across nine U.S. cities.


And I'm so grateful for all the opportunities that Heroes opened up for all of us. So, thank you and congratulations on 15 incredible years.


PAUL: Oh, doing such important work there. To learn more, go to, and thank you for doing so.


[06:50:00] COY WIRE, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Welcome back to NEW DAY, I'm Coy

Wire. Major League Baseball teams have played 160 games so far this season, but none will be important than these last two. Either the Giants or the Dodgers will have the top seed in the national league and home-field advantage throughout the World Series. We just don't know which one it will be. San Francisco shutting out the Padres 3-0 last night to tie up franchise record with their 106th win.

The victory also clinching at least a share of their first NOS title since 2012, but they can't celebrate just yet. Now to difference makers, featuring captain of the Afghanistan women's national soccer team Shabnam Mobarez. When the Taliban took control of Afghanistan in August, one of the concerns regarding women in the country was that all the progress made in women sports would disappear overnight. We spoke with Mobarez about her fears for young girls and women under the new government.


SHABNAM MOBAREZ, CAPTAIN, AFGHAN WOMEN'S NATIONAL SOCCER TEAM: I got selected for the Afghan women's national team in 2015 and traveled back in 2016 where I got -- I got to see the Afghan women in Afghanistan and how brave they were, and there were so many barriers that they were going through just to go to practice. And that's when my heart was captured by the Afghan women and I knew that this was my area and this was here that I have to make a difference. So, I want to continue my work with them and continue the work with the Afghan women's national team to bring awareness to the sports, of course, but also to give the women of Afghanistan a little bit of joy and a little bit of hope.

Because that girl that started playing football five years ago was dreaming big about making it somewhere in the football world. She's not allowed to do that anymore. We had big dreams for this team, and we really wanted to just be united and represent Afghan woman to the outside world, and show them that Afghan women can also play football, and Afghan women could also have an education. It's heartbreaking for me because my teammates, I know them as very brave women, but this is something that takes a toll on everybody. We are suffering as a team. I am suffering on behalf of all of my sisters. And they are not able to use their words right now and use their voice. So, I try to be their voice as much as I can.


WIRE: Mobarez says that she and her teammates are going to do everything they can to support the soccer players who fled Afghanistan and are now trying to rebuild their lives elsewhere, and they're standing up for human rights and for women and girls who want to live freely in society. Stay with us, more with Christi and Boris with NEW DAY, next.


[06:55:00] SANCHEZ: So, Postmaster General Louis DeJoy's ten-year plan to make the postal service profitable started yesterday and it might lead to some headaches because the new procedure is going to slow down delivery times and cut off hours at the post office.

PAUL: And we're just heading into the holidays --


PAUL: So there's that, right? CNN's Kristen Holmes checked all of this out for us to try to decipher who is going to be most affected and the reaction from Capitol Hill as well.


KRISTEN HOLMES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: After more than a year of complaints nationwide about the snail-like piece of mail delivery --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They should figure out a way to get it and get it there on time.

HOLMES: It's about to get worse.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I feel like we already wait so much.

HOLMES: The cause, Trump-era Postmaster General Louis DeJoy's ten-year plan started Friday, and it promises to increase the delivery time for first class mail from three days to five. Experts say this will mostly affect mail traveling long distances. The postal service relying more on ground transportation than planes. According to a "Washington Post" analysis, western states will experience the brunt of these changes, 70 percent of first class mail sent to Nevada will be delayed, 58 percent delayed to Washington State and 57 percent to Montana.

Florida will also see massive delays with 60 percent of deliveries. DeJoy says the plan will save money.

LOUIS DEJOY, POSTMASTER GENERAL, UNITED STATES: It is a path to financial sustainability and service assets.

HOLMES: Lawmakers pushing back.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Medical shipments have gone missing, many small businesses cannot get their products to customers.

SEN. CHRIS COONS (D-DE): I've gotten complaints from just families who didn't get birthday cards from grandma to their grandchild or notices about things that they needed to get to on time.

HOLMES: As well as members of the Postal Service Board of Governors.

RONALD STROMAN, MEMBER, USPS BOARD OF GOVERNORS: Intentionally slowing first class mail and package delivery, by changing service standards is strategically ill-conceived, creates dangerous risks that are not justified by the relatively low financial return and doesn't meet our responsibility as an essential part of America's critical infrastructure.

HOLMES: DeJoy remains mired in controversy, a staple of his tenure. The Trump hold-over and Republican mega donor came under fire during the 2020 election as Democrats accused him of intentionally sabotaging the postal service and slowing down delivery amid unprecedented mail- in voting. Earlier this year, the Department of Justice opened an investigation into DeJoy's political fundraising and contributions when he was in the private sector. DeJoy denies all accusations.

Democrats have called for President Biden to get rid of DeJoy, while Biden doesn't have the power to fire him, he can replace the board that does. But the president has shown no interest in doing that.