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Biden And Trump To Face Off In First Presidential Debate Tuesday; Trump, Democrats Fight Over SCOTUS Pick Ahead Of First Debate; Senate Democrats Condemn Nomination Of Amy Coney Barrett; More Than A Dozen Arrested In Portland During Competing Protests; Rochester Names First Female Chief Following The Death Of Daniel Prude In Police Custody; Global Coronavirus Death Toll Nears One Million; Florida Governor Lifts Restrictions For Restaurants And Bars. Aired 6-7a ET

Aired September 27, 2020 - 06:00   ET




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Judge Amy Coney Barrett is Trump's nominee to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court.

JUDGE AMY CONEY BARRETT, FEDERAL APPELLATE JUDGE AND NOTRE DAME LAW PROFESSOR: I have no illusions that the road ahead of me will be easy. And I will do my very best to demonstrate that I am worthy of your support.

SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): A vote for Amy Coney Barrett is a dagger aimed at the heart of the health care protections Americans so desperately need.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I'm sure it will be extremely non-controversial. We said that the last time, didn't we?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: President Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden will face off in their first debate.

JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: He doesn't know how to debate the facts because he's not that smart. He doesn't know that many facts.

TRUMP: We look forward to seeing him in the debate. He's got a lot more experience. He's got 47 years. I've got 3 1/2 years.


CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Look at that beautiful morning. With the lights there behind the Capitol. Welcome to NEW DAY on this Sunday morning. We're always so grateful to have your company with us. I'm Christi Paul.

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN ANCHOR: And I'm Martin Savidge in for Victor Blackwell. Good morning, Christi.

PAUL: Good morning, Marty. Yes. We're counting down, aren't we? SAVIDGE: Yes, we are. I mean, maybe it has been lost in all the other news. But we are counting down to the first presidential debate of the 2020 race as a confirmation battle looms in Washington.

PAUL: Yes. President Trump's nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court sets this tight timeline for Republicans and they're insisting that they fill that seat before the November 3rd election.

SAVIDGE: CNN's Sarah Westwood joins us now from the White House. And, Sarah, with the elections so close the timing here is absolutely crucial.

SARAH WESTWOOD, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Good morning, Martin and Christi.

And the timing here is crucial. There's not a lot of room for error for Senate Republicans who are going to try to get this done for the White House in just a little over a month now. And Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham was quick yesterday to release a schedule for the confirmation proceedings after the president formally nominated Judge Amy Coney Barrett to fill the vacancy. Senate Republicans want to start those hearings on October 12th. Those proceedings are expected to last just about three to four days trying to get this done as quick process.

So Tuesday, the 13th is the big day. That's the day at this point that we expect to see Judge Amy Coney Barrett take questions from the panel of senators. Democrats obviously, bitterly oppose this nomination. They say that this is a power grab from Republicans. They oppose it on procedural grounds as well as the substance of what Amy Coney Barrett believes.

But they also point out that the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wished before her passing that this seat not be filled until the next president takes office. But yesterday, Coney Barrett speaking in the Rose Garden said she won't forget whose vacancy she's been nominated to fill.


BARRETT: I will be mindful of who came before me. The flag of the United States is still flying at half-staff in memory of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg to mark the end of a great American life.

TRUMP: This should be a straightforward and prompt confirmation. Should be very easy. Good luck. It's going to be very quick. I'm sure it will be extremely non-controversial. We said that the last time, didn't we?


WESTWOOD: President Trump obviously making a reference there to the historically divisive confirmation proceedings for Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had preferred Amy Coney Barrett all along, considering her to be the easiest potential nominee to confirm. He described her yesterday as exceedingly well qualified and promised that she would get a full vote on the Senate floor in the weeks ahead, Martin and Christi.

SAVIDGE: All right. That's where we begin. Sarah Westwood, thanks very much for that, from the White House.

Democrats, of course, are lining up in opposition to Amy Coney Barrett's nomination.

PAUL: Yes. Former Vice President Joe Biden called Barrett's nomination a threat to reproductive rights and the Affordable Care Act. And Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg must be -- quote -- "turning over in her grave."

Now Senate Democrats are promising to fight the nomination but stuck in a minority they're largely at the end of the day powerless to stop it.


SEN. RICHARD BLUMENTHAL (D-CT): Never underestimate the American people. We're going to take our case to them. They recognize that this process is a sham, illegitimate barely a month before the election when voters in 11 states are already casting their ballots. They deserve a voice in this consequential choice.


SAVIDGE: Of course, the Supreme Court will be just one of a number of topics headlining the first presidential debate. That's going to be on Tuesday.

PAUL: Yes. Both sides are managing expectations with a very familiar attack line. The other guy isn't very smart, they both say.



TRUMP: The dumb guy. The dumb guy. Always known as the dumb guy. But we look forward to seeing him in the debate.

He's got a lot more experience. He's got 47 years. I've got 3 1/2 years. So, we'll see.

BIDEN: It is going to be difficult. I know -- I mean, my guess is it's going to be just straight attack. They're going to be mostly personal. It's the only thing he knows how to do. He doesn't know how to debate the facts because he's not that smart.


PAUL: CNN's Jessica Dean has more on Biden's debate prep.

JESSICA DEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Martin and Christi. Former Vice President Joe Biden spending this weekend fully preparing for Tuesday's debate against President Donald Trump in Cleveland, Ohio. We're told that he really likes aides just peppering him with questions at rapid speed as opposed to a full mock debate.

We also know that previously in the weeks running up to this he's been studying briefing books. He has told the traveling press that he's paying attention to what Donald Trump has said and what Donald Trump has not said. Really, holding small group meetings with policy advisers, drilling down on a lot of policy.

But again as we get to this weekend, Biden focusing very fully at debate preparation. And his team also expressing the idea that, look, it may be that Donald Trump is going to be pretty unpredictable on that stage. But they don't think it's wise or even maybe possible for Joe Biden to be fact checking him the entire time that's on the stage. They're hoping that the moderator, in this case Chris Wallace of Fox News, will do some of that fact checking.

Instead the key idea here is for the former vice president to continue to draw the focus back to what we've heard him talk about time and time again on the campaign trail and that is, the health crisis and the economic crisis that this nation is facing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. And tying President Trump's response to that as the reason why the nation is suffering. That making the case that President Trump was not up to the job. And that his failures on that front are what have led us to this moment with the crises both the economic crisis and also the health crisis.

Now, as for the debate itself, it's going to be different because of the pandemic. So it's going to be 90 minutes. That's pretty typical. But we're also told that instead of the typical say average of 900 attendees there will be about 60 to 70 people within the debate hall which have to be moved from Notre Dame which pulled out because of COVID to Case Western in Cleveland. We're also told that everybody in that debate hall will be COVID tested before they get inside. So a lot of precautions being taken as we get closer to Tuesday's debate -- Martin and Christi.

SAVIDGE: Jessica Dean, thanks very much for the sort of preview. And it is the most anticipated moment of the election at least so far. Donald Trump and Joe Biden facing off in the first presidential event. Watch it all play out live on CNN with special coverage. That will be Tuesday starting at 7:00 Eastern.

PAUL: Do stay with us here. A tense night in downtown Portland as officers attempt to clear the streets after right wing demonstrators clashed with counter-protesters. We'll tell you what happened and show you more of the pictures.

SAVIDGE: Plus, a former FDA senior official joins us to discuss how and when a safe coronavirus vaccine will be available. That's ahead.


[06:12:28] PAUL: The tough night overnight in Portland. Authorities there declared an unlawful assembly after more than a dozen people were arrested for throwing cans of rocks, as well as other objects, at police.

SAVIDGE: The unrest followed a very tense day of clashes and counter clashes with protesters. CNN's Dan Simon has more.


DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: We are in downtown Portland and what you're seeing behind me is pretty much the same thing in terms of what we've seen over the last several months, where you have a group of protesters here downtown. They're in front of the justice center and right now we're not seeing much of a police presence. But earlier in the night, we did see some protesters clash with police. Protesters throwing different things and more than a dozen people were arrested.

I have to say there was a concern that things could have been a lot worse. You did have members from the Proud Boys group hold a mass rally. More than 200 people showed up at a local park. The Proud Boys, of course, an extremist group. The Southern Poverty Law Center and said that they are a hate group.

These are pro-Trump people. They showed up with their weapons. They applied for a permit from the city of Portland. They were denied due to COVID-19 concerns but they came anyway. And as a result of that you did have several hundred left leaning protesters, counter-protesters, come to a separate rally and fortunately there was no clashes between them.

Police really fanned out across the city. They did their best to try to keep those two groups separate. We'll just have to see what happens.

Dan Simon, CNN Portland, Oregon.


SAVIDGE: Thank you, Dan, for that.

The city of Rochester, New York, has named Cynthia Herriott-Sullivan as the new interim police chief following the death of Daniel Prude in police custody.

PAUL: Yes. Police body camera footage of Prude's death prompted as remembered days of protests and accusations of a cover up. Well, early this month, the previous chief announced he was stepping down saying his integrity was being destroyed and the mayor later fired him. But Herriott-Sullivan served with the Rochester Police Department for 24 years before retiring. And now she's coming back to become the city's first female chief.


CYNTHIA HERRIOTT-SULLIVAN, ROCHESTER INTERIM POLICE CHIEF: I love this city. And I'm going to give it my 110, 20, 40, 50 percent effort.

I know these are tough times right now. But I believe strongly that if we all bring our best to the table, you know, we'll be able to get it done.


SAVIDGE: She will start her new position on October 14th.

Still to come, health experts are looking at reasonable vaccine timelines as the death toll from the coronavirus approaches 1 million people globally.


The former senior FDA official will join us next.

PAUL: And a D.C. opera company is using a song to honor the life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. We're going to take you there.



PAUL: I hate to tell you this but we are approaching nearly 1 million people who have died worldwide from the coronavirus. According to the World Health Organization, doubling that number is -- quote -- "certainly unimaginable, but it's not impossible."

SAVIDGE: Right. A senior health expert inside the organization said, reaching 2 million deaths would not be a function of not having a vaccine but whether or not the tools and knowledge are put in place to save lives and prevent transmission.


CNN correspondent Polo Sandoval has more for us.


POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Dr. Anthony Fauci says we are still in the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic and points to concern about rising rates throughout the fall and winter. Yet, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is moving full steam ahead into phase 3 reopening.

MAYOR DAN GELBER (D), MIAMI BEACH: We've been reopening to 50 percent capacity. We're going to try to stay there notwithstanding the governor's order. The problem with the governor's order he didn't just accelerated and open up bars as well, but he also stopped our ability to create a mask mandate and fine people for not wearing masks. So, he essentially took away the one thing we are doing which was actually allowing us to open up the economy and then accelerated the opening up of the economy without telling anybody.

Literally yesterday late in the afternoon and everybody in the county was surprised and frankly, shocked as we're rushing around today to try to figure out how to interpret the order and still not create a huge amount of virus spread because we weren't prepared.

SANDOVAL: This, as Florida surpasses 14,000 COVID-19 deaths and nears 700,000 cases.

DR. SEEMA YASMIN, FORMER CDC DISEASE DETECTIVE: The governor's actions are premature and misguided. This time and in previous times, too, it's under his leadership that Florida became a national hotspot. In fact, Florida held the country's record for the single day highest number of new coronavirus cases back in July when more than 15,000 Floridians were infected in a single day.

SANDOVAL: On Saturday, we learned a 12-year-old girl from Duval County was among the 107 COVID-19 deaths reported in Florida according to the Florida Department of Health.

California announced Saturday that the 14-day positivity rate had dropped just below 3 percent at California State University Long Beach all on campus residents were quarantined and in-person classes are being paused for two weeks after a number of students tested positive for the virus.

DR. LEANA WEN, CNN MEDICAL ANALYST: We're heading into the winter season where we could be seeing the confluence of COVID-19 and influenza. And this is the time for us to be reducing these high-risk situations as much as possible.

SANDOVAL: On Saturday, New Jersey saw its highest daily case count since early June. The state reported 760 new COVID-19 cases marking the highest daily case count for the state since June 4th when 864 cases were reported. According to the state's COVID-19 data dashboard.

In the state of New York, announced just over 1,000 additional cases. A slight uptick from the 908 cases reported Friday. The CDC predicting at least another 20,000 COVID-19 death by October 17th.


SANDOVAL: Back to New Jersey. What you just heard there experience from the largest COVID numbers since June. Authorities believe there are multiple factors behind that. There's community spread. There's increased testing capacity and also more cases among young people, Martin and Christi. But we should also point out as far as hospitalizations, death rates in New Jersey, those two remain steady this morning.

SAVIDGE: All right. Polo Sandoval, thank you very much for that report.

PAUL: So president and CEO of Biotechnical Innovation and former FDA senior official Dr. Michelle McMurry-Heath is with us now. Dr Heath, thank you so much for being here. It's good to have you back.


PAUL: Absolutely. So the FDA said that it's going to tighten restrictions on an approved COVID-19 vaccination. We know President Trump has said he can override that process. You worked inside the FDA. Help us understand the approval process.

MCMURRY-HEATH: Well, this is an incredibly important communication that we've heard from the FDA over the last few weeks. We at Bio released a letter signed by myself and our four former chairs just about two weeks ago calling on the FDA to do something exactly like this, to restore the public confidence and the process and let the public know that they are going to follow scientific integrity.

Shortly after that, our nine top vaccine manufacturers released a vaccine pledge. Pledging themselves to scientific integrity. And this is exactly what the public should see. That the manufacturers making the vaccine want to get this right. The FDA regulating the vaccine wants to do the same. And so we're so excited to see this progress coming.

PAUL: And it's coming at an imperative time because there was an Ipsos poll, a new Ipsos poll released over this weekend -- for this weekend that shows six in 10 Americans say they will not take a vaccine. What do you think is the trust factor here that's missing?

MCMURRY-HEATH: The trust factor is that the American public is seeing that our politicians are sometimes speaking about the vaccine as though it's a political tool. When in reality, it's science. It's medicine. And we need to leave it to the scientists to get this right. It's incredibly important that we have a vaccine that works and I have no doubt that we will very, very shortly.


We just need to let science take its course.

PAUL: There's also these early results from Johnson & Johnson's clinical trial. There's 800 people in this trial. They're in two different age groups, I know. This is a vaccine that they said was well-tolerated. It appeared to produce a strong immune response. And this is I think, the only -- please correct me if I'm wrong, that is a one-dose vaccine.

When we say one dose, do we mean one and done? Do we mean once a year? What do you know about this vaccine potential?

MCMURRY-HEATH: Well, there are a couple of the leading candidates that are meant to be one-dose vaccines. And in full disclosure, I used to work for Johnson & Johnson and I know that they have fantastic scientists there as there are at our other vaccine manufacturers. So out of 180 vaccine candidates that are in process to try to combat COVID, nine of them now have reached either late stage 3 or stage 2 clinical trials. And Johnson & Johnson is among them. And we're seeing great results with all of those early candidates.

And so toleration has been very, very good. And it seems like the immune response is strong as well. One dose would mean that you would take one and not need a booster dose to receive the protection from the vaccine, which is great. It's very, very easy. And that is wonderful.

No one knows yet if that means you'll have lifelong immunity or if it's something more like our flu vaccine where you might see people taking a dose on an annual basis. That is still yet to be seen. But it's great to have one dose candidates and two dose candidates if they get the job done and that's exactly what we're starting to see with the early results.

PAUL: All right. And the treatments that could be a bridge to vaccines. They're talking about monoclonal antibodies.

MCMURRY-HEATH: Antibodies. Yes.

PAUL: Right. That they stop the coronavirus from spreading in the body. How encouraged are you by that?

MCMURRY-HEATH: Well, a lot of the antibody work is looking very strong. And we're seeing a mixture of monoclonal antibodies where manufacturers make a very specific antibody that seems to work against COVID.

Polyclonal antibodies where they make more of a menu of antibodies that can fight the virus. And then also convalescent plasma where you're taking antibodies from patients that have recovered from COVID.

In all of those cases, we're trying to manipulate and use the human immune response to help fight the virus, to help really -- amount of responsible when the body is not able to get -- do it itself. So these bridge technologies are incredibly important. And they're not the only early therapeutics that are showing promise. And therapeutics are going to be incredibly important not just to get us to an eventual vaccine but also to help in the cases of people who breakthrough and may have an infection even though they've received the vaccine.

So, we must pursue both therapeutics and vaccines at the same time. And that's exactly what we're doing.

PAUL: All right. Dr. Michelle McMurry-Heath, I'm grateful that you would be so kind to get up so early in the morning on a Sunday to walk us through. Your expertise is much needed. Thank you, madam.


SAVIDGE: Yes. It's encouraging to hear that there is progress in treatments as well as a vaccine.

Just a few days until debate night and there are going to be some big changes this year. We'll tell you what they are and why they matter.


[06:30:00] SAVIDGE: The first presidential debate Tuesday night. But as with everything in the COVID era, there is going to be things a little different.

PAUL: I want to bring in CNN's Chief Media Correspondent, Brian Stelter, walking us through what we can expect from this year's first presidential debate.

Brian Stelter, Good morning.


PAUL: So I think one of the things that is always interesting to see during debates is the energy that's brought by the audience, right, The people that are there, how they react to what's said.


PAUL: How is that going to work this year, because, as we understand it, a much smaller audience this year than normal?

STELTER: Yes, it will be measured in the dozens instead of in the hundreds. Frank Fahrenkopf, the co-chair of the debates, tells us that this will be an audience just of a few family members from each candidate, a few members of the university that is sponsoring the debate, a few members of the commission and a few members of the media. So, instead of hundreds and hundreds, the total might be 70 or 80 people in the room.

And if you think that the candidates need the energy of a big audience, then maybe this will affect them. But on the other hand, the candidates have known about these plans, they've known about the COVID changes for a while. So maybe they've been able to adjust.

The debates matter because these are the single biggest events of the political season. 80 million people watched the first Trump-Clinton debate in 2016.

Now , I know we are still all going to fight over who saw what and who said what and won and who lost, but at least it's a moment where everybody -- almost everybody who cares about politics watches the same thing. And that almost never happens now in this fragmented world. So that's why the debates matter, I think.

SAVIDGE: There is not going to be any spin alley this year. And that really is sort of an important element. What's it going to be like without that?

STELTER: Yes. Another example of changes due to the coronavirus, you're not going to have dozens of campaign aides there in-person afterwards spinning with hundreds of reporters. Frankly, we're going to have a lot of news crews staying at home and minimal staffing at these debate sites.


So the sense of the pomp and circumstance all of the events that surround the debate, that's being stripped away.

Now, you could argue that's a good thing. Perhaps it's better just to focus on the debate itself and not on all the people on the edges spinning and campaigning for their candidates. But it does make for a very different situation.

And there were a lot of COVID era changes as well. Everybody in the room will be tested, including the candidates and the moderator. All of those sorts of health and safety precautions are being put into place as well.

And the moderator, Chris Wallace of Fox, he moderated one of the debates in 2016, he has a track record of doing this. But on reliable today, I'm going to be talking with the co-chair about what the topics are, why they were chosen the way they were and what to expect on Tuesday.

PAUL: All right. And, Stelter, real quickly, is there any ceiling from one side or the other as to whether the changes that we're going to see this year would be more advantageous for either of the candidates?

STELTER: Well, if you think about President Trump, the first thing that comes to mind are his rallies, thousands of people. Even recently, even last night, he's drawing these huge crowds. So will he suffer when there's not a big crowd in the room? You could make that argument for sure.

But then again, he recently had a town hall on ABC that was a lot like the debate, where there were only a few people in the room and he seemed to fare just fine in that.

So, I think that's an interesting question for Tuesday night. Will it matter that the audience is smaller, that it can't have giant cheers and giant crowds? He's really going to be focused on the cameras instead, these few television cameras that are on him and Biden instead.

And, for me, the big question is what will Trump do early on or what Biden do early on to set the tone? Is Biden going to say something early on about Trump's penchant for lying and try to say, hey, I'm not even going to fact-check everything that comes out of his mouth? That's going to be an interesting tension, I think, between these two candidates.

SAVIDGE: You're right. You're absolutely right. Brian Stelter, thank you very much. And I forgot to mention, it's going to be held in my hometown, Cleveland, our home state, right, Christi?

PAUL: That's right. Yes, that's right.

SAVIDGE: Of course, yes.

Well, you can see more of Brian on Reliable Sources. That will be today at 11:00 Eastern.

And he has an interview with the chairman of the commission of the presidential debate. So, look for more insights as to what's going to happen Tuesday night.

PAUL: So, listen, we're just a few weeks from the election at this point and voters in a lot of states are weighing in early. Nearly half a million ballots have already been cast this election cycle and the demand for absentee is higher than it's ever been.

SAVIDGE: Wow, that is staggering thought. That includes in Wisconsin, where more than 1.1 million absentee ballots were requested in a state that Donald Trump won by less than a percentage point in 2016.

Could it be in play again this year? CNN's Jeff Zeleny takes a look.


DEB THOMSON, UNDECIDED WISCONSIN VOTER: The office used to have a lot of dignity. And that's something that's missing.

JEFF ZELENY, CNN SENIOR WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Deb Thomson is talking about the Oval Office. And President Trump's conduct, she often finds troubling.

Yet, as a catholic, she said she could not back Joe Biden because he supports abortion rights.

So if you can't vote for Joe Biden, can I assume that you'll vote for President Trump?

THOMSON: I don't know. Because part of me, I'm afraid to have him in office for four more years.

ZELENY: Signs of the fall election season are everywhere here in battleground Wisconsin, so too are sounds of Trump exhaustion.

CAROLINE QUINLAN, UNDECIDED WISCONSIN VOTER: I have to say, I get it, I get it why people don't like Trump. But at the same time, he has done a few things that I thought were important.

ZELENY: It's one of the biggest challenges facing Biden, capitalizing on voters nagging uncertainty about Trump by persuading those with doubts to go Democratic.

VAL DINGMAN, UNDECIDED WISCONSIN VOTER: I will vote, yes. For who, I don't know yet.

ZELENY: Val Dingman does not like the president's handling of coronavirus or how he conducted himself during a summer of racial unrest. But she's far from sold on Biden.

Four years ago she supported a third party candidate which she hopes not to do again.

DINGMAN: My vote for a third-party went to Trump, unfortunately. So I guess I learned my lesson.

ZELENY: Her indecision raises questions about an enthusiasm gap, which worries Biden supporters like Mary and Jerry Karthauser. MARY KARTHAUSER, WISCONSIN BIDEN SUPPORTER: I hope there's not too many that are in that camp that can't realize that there's a lot of issues here at play.

JERRFY KARTHAUSER, WISCONSIN BIDEN SUPPORTER: I sure as heck don't want to see Trump for the next four years.

ZELENY: The president nearly won Wisconsin in 2016. His path to re- election will be determined to a large degree by a strength in these suburban Republican strongholds around Milwaukee.

PAUL DEMCZAK, WISCONSIN TRUMP SUPPORTER: Sometimes he's a little bit blunt, you could say. But at the same time, you don't have to wonder if he is trying to hide anything. You know, you're getting the straight answer from him.

ZELENY: Paul and Denisa Demczak waved their Trump flag proudly but noticed plenty of Biden signs nearby.


SALLY NORDSTROM, WISCONSIN BIDEN SUPPORTER: And I'm talking to everybody I can and I'm annoying my neighbors by putting out these signs because there're Trump/Pence signs all over my neighborhood.

ZELENY: With absentee voting already underway, the president has threatened about not accepting the results of the election.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We want to make sure the election is honest. And I'm not sure that it can be.

ZELENY: Reverberated with controversy here. Peter, an independent who plans to vote for Biden, said Trump supporters should take note.

PETER AKITI, WISCONSIN BIDEN SUPPORTER: It's become like a monarchy, a dictatorship, like America is a republic. We vote. We don't have dictatorships. You don't have queens and kings. People vote.

ZELENY: Drew Papez, who backed Trump four years ago, said he disagreed with the president's comments.

DREW PAPEZ, WISCONSIN TRUMP SUPPORTER: That wording should not be used. That was inappropriate.

ZELENY: But said it's Trump being Trump, which his supporters love.

PAPEZ: I have to look at the body of work, who he is as a whole person, all that he's done and all that he's said.


ZELENY: So the Biden campaign is under no illusions they can win these Republican strongholds, but they do believe they can close the gap. That gap contributed to President Trump carrying the state by some 23,000 votes four years ago. That's just one percentage point of the total in this state. No question, both campaigns very much engaged here, spending of dollars in television advertising. There's no question President Trump needs these ten electoral votes for his re-election strategy.

Jeff Zeleny, CNN, Cedarburg, Wisconsin.

PAUL: Jeff, thank you so much.

And later this morning on State of the Union, Jake Tapper is sitting down with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Dr. Jill Biden, Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton and West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin. That's State of the Union airing at 9:00 Eastern this morning.

So LeBron James heading back to the NBA finals, He is out to prove that his reign of dominance is nowhere close to being over.



PAUL: So, LeBron James has brought the Lakers to the promised land, a trip to the NBA Finals.

SAVIDGE: Christi, he has done that in another town you might know.

PAUL: Cleveland, maybe?

SAVIDGE: Did I mention I have a Cleveland connection?

PAUL: Yes, you're stuck with the Buckeyes this morning between the two of us.

SAVIDGE: And Andy Scholes is out and joining us this morning from another great city, which is New Orleans.

And what I love about LeBron, and there are many things I do, but some games, he holds back and lets other players come to the forefront and there are nights when it's just the LeBron show last night was that.

ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: That's exactly right, Martin. Yes, he was just dominant last night in Game 5.

And LeBron, I mean, he's just incredible. He's not even going to his ninth NBA finals in the past ten years. It's going to be his tenth NBA finals, total, only three NBA teams have done had done that more times than LeBron.

What an incredible, incredible career and performance by him in Game 5. He was just on a mission against the Nuggets last night. He scored nine straight in the fourth quarter to put this game away, finished with 38 points, 16 rebounds and 10 assists. The Lakers now going back to the finals for the first time since 2010 after the 117-107 win.


LEBRON JAMES, LOS ANGELES LAKERS FORWARD: We're going to enjoy it tonight, as we should, because this is not promised every year. But we understand that we've got bigger fish to fry. We understand there is a bigger goal. But we can't take this for granted because this doesn't happen every year to anybody.


SCHOLES: So, the Lakers are now going to wait for the winner between the Heat and the Celtics. Game 6 of the series is tonight.

In the meantime, a wild day in college football yesterday. We were over in Baton Rouge where a little more than 21,000 fans were on hand to see the LSU, the defending champs lose in their opener. Mississippi State Quarterback K.J. Costello breaking an SEC record throwing for more than 600 yards. Mike Leach wins his first game with the Bulldogs, upsetting sixth rank LSU 44-34.

Now, all of the SEC teams kicking off yesterday and all of their games had fans at a reduced capacity. The most was at Texas A&M, where they saw just over 24,000 in the stands.

At Arkansas, all the players and coaches for Arkansas and Georgia wearing black SEC T-shirts with the words, together. It just means more on them. And both teams locking arms together two hours before kickoff and walking to midfield in a show of unity.

In Oxford, Florida and Ole Miss taking a knee together right before kickoff. In a joint statement, the school is saying, it was to acknowledged the unrest in our country surrounding the treatment of African-Americans.

Florida Quarterback Kyle Trask then throwing for six touchdowns in the 51-35 Gators win.

Biggest upset of the day belongs to Kansas State, the Wildcats continue to be shorthanded due to COVID-19, but they scored 24 unanswered to come back to beat third-ranked Oklahoma 38-35. Big celebration for Kansas State after the game in their locker room.

To hockey, the Dallas Stars surviving the fight another day in the Stanley Cup final. They won a thriller last night over the lightning 3-2 in double overtime. Game 6 of that series is going to be tomorrow night.

The week 3 of the NFL season continuing today and more and more teams welcoming fans into the stands, including here in New Orleans. They're going to have about 750 family members of the team today there at the superdome, the Arizona Cardinals doing something similar.

And, guys, the Saints, they're calling this a test of their new health and safety protocols. And if things go well here in New Orleans today for their game against the Packers, they will be allowing fans in the future, but still definitely at a reduced capacity.

PAUL: All right. It's just so good to see sports back up and at it again. Andy, thank you so much.

SAVIDGE: Well, we know the dogs can be used to detect explosives, drugs or even food, but could they detect COVID-19?


Experts think they just might be able to. That's next

PAUL: First though, we're going to go inside this incredible story of a boy from Troy turned civil rights icon. Here is a preview for you of the CNN film, John Lewis, good trouble.


FMR. REP. JOHN LEWIS (D-GA): I would see those signs that said, white men, colored men, white women, colored women, white waiting, colored waiting. And I've asked my mother, my father, my grandparents and great grandparents asked why. They would say, boy, that's the way it is. Don't get in the way. Don't get in trouble.

But in 1955, 15 years old, the action of Rosa Parks, the works of leadership of Dr. King inspired me to get in trouble, what I called good trouble, necessary trouble. It's time for all good people in this state here in Dallas to get in trouble.

I got arrested a few times for 26 years (ph), 40 times. And since I've been in Congress, another five times. And I'm probably going to get arrested again for something.

But my philosophy is very simple. When you see something that is not right, not fair, not just, say something, do something. Get in trouble, good trouble, necessary trouble. Save our country. Save our democracy. I wish you well. Thank you very much.




SAVIDGE: All right. This is an interesting one. A pilot project in Finland is training dogs to sniff out COVID-19.

PAUL: CNN's Anna Stewart spoke with the researchers behind the project.


ANNA STEWART, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Waiting at an airport in Finland, Valow, Cossie, Mina and E.T. (ph), canine detectives on the trail of an unwanted import.

The dogs are part of a pilot project announced by Helsinki's main international airport on Tuesday. They're being trained to detect positive cases of COVID-19.

A local official sees how it works. Volunteer travelers swipe their skin, drop the sample into a cup and it's given to a dog to sniff. Within a minute, a result. If this test is positive, the participant is asked to take a swab test to see whether the dog is right.

So far in this trial, what is the accuracy of the dogs?

ANNA HIELM-BJORKMAN, UNIVERSITY OF HELSINKI: Well, so far, we've only done three days and so far we have only two positive ones. At this stage, we can't do any statistics yet.

STEWART: Dogs are already used to sniff out explosives, food. Whether they can detect COVID-19 is still in question. Researchers say they still don't fully understand the science behind a dog's nose.

HIELM-BJORKMAN: Well, we actually have no idea what this is that it detects. And I think that it will take us years and years to know that, because there's actually no machinery on earth that has the same sensitivity as a dog has.

STEWART: What makes a good sniffer dog? Is it a certain type of breed? Is it how they're brought up?

HIELM-BJORKMAN: A good sniffer dog is one that loves treats. It's usually Labradors and golden retrievers.

STEWART: The trial is expected to run through the end of the year. If successful, there are hopes this fast and non-invasive screening could be rolled across Finland around the world.

TIMO ARONKYTO, VANTAA, FINLAND DEPUTY MAYOR It's possible that these go around to passengers in a similar way than custom dogs do.

STEWART: But there's caution from others.

LASSE LEHTONEN, DIRECTOR OF DIAGNOSTIC, HELSINKI UNIVERSITY HOSPITAL: If I need a medical diagnosis, I would call the proper doctor and proper testing to get the results.

STEWART: If the trial is a success, sniffer dogs could be a useful tool to detect COVID-19 and that's not to be sniffed at.

Anna Stewart, CNN, London.


PAUL: Well, the late Supreme Court justice, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, had this a deep passion for the law and also for the opera, in case you didn't know.

SAVIDGE: Yes, she did. Now, one opera company has put on a musical tribute. Photojournalist Andrew Crisman (ph) was there.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're IN Series. We're a D.C. opera company. We mix opera, theater and social justice. And we know that music was Justice Ginsburg's release or escape. So we thought it was the one gift we could offer her now. TERESA FERRARA BLESSING, SINGER FOR IN SERIES: RBG meant so much as a woman growing up in the 20th and 21st century, her persistent fight for women to have an equal say in important decisions. She was an avid opera fan.

For me, opera and music, it brings hope to people's hearts. It inspires people. And that is what we were trying do here today.