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New Day Sunday

Trump's Doctor Clears Him to Leave Isolation, Few Details on True State of the President's Health; Biden Hosts Campaign Event in Battleground Pennsylvania; More Than 54,000 New Cases Reported Saturday, Fourth Day in a Row Cases in Excess of 50K. Aired 7-8a ET

Aired October 11, 2020 - 07:00   ET




ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY WEEKEND with Victor Blackwell and Christi Paul.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: New York City right at the top of the hour this morning. Good morning to you there. Good morning. Thanks for being with us.

President Trump's doctor says that he can now end isolation, return to an active schedule. He also says that the president has not had a fever in well over 24 hours. But we still don't know if the president is tested negative for the virus.

CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: You know, the president hosted a large crowd at the White House yesterday. Take a look here. He delivered what was a highly political speech to supporters there on the South Lawn and has at least three in-person rallies scheduled coming up this week. That potentially puts thousands of people at risk of the coronavirus.

CNN's Sarah Westwood is at the White House.

Now, we know the doctor has said he is cleared and ready to resume life I suppose as he knew it. But in terms of what is to come next, what do we really know about the president's health? Because there's no negative test that's been released as we know it, yes?


There is no negative test that we know of from the doctor. Even though we did finally get an update from Dr. Sean Conley, the president's lead physician, yesterday after days of not hearing an official update about the president's health, there are still some questions left after this memo that essentially paves the way for President Trump to return to the campaign trail, to start having events again. We just need to know a little bit more about the president's health.

But I want to read you some of this memo in the doctor's own words: This evening, I'm happy to report that in addition to the president meeting CDC criteria for the safe discontinuation of isolation, he is no longer considered a transmission risk to others. Now at day ten from symptom onset, fever-free for well over 24 hours, and all symptoms improved, the assortment of advanced diagnostic tests obtained reveal there was no longer evidence of actively replicating virus.

Now we don't know, for example, what diagnostic tests were used, whether the president did test negative, we also don't know the date of the president's last negative test before he was diagnosed with COVID-19. That's an outstanding question that the White House has repeatedly refused to answer. But from that memo, we're learning that the president may not be contagious anymore.

And clearly, his efforts to get back on the campaign trail and to project the sense of normalcy are paying off.

Despite his hospitalization, though, and despite the fact that the president now has personal experience battling the virus, last night at an event here at the White House, the president continued to downplay the threat.


DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We'll get rid of it all over the world. You see big flare-ups in Europe, big flare-ups in Canada, very big flare-up in Canadian, you saw that today. A lot of flare-ups.

But it's going to disappear. It is disappearing. And vaccines are going to help. The therapeutics are going to help a lot.


WESTWOOD: Now, President Trump held that event yesterday here at the White House with hundreds of people gathered on the South Lawn. And he'll hit the campaign trail this week starting on Monday with a rally in Florida, Victor and Christi.

BLACKWELL: Sarah, we're get something details from "The New York Times" about -- I laugh because they're laughable.

PAUL: Yeah.

BLACKWELL: From "The New York Times" about the president's departure from Walter Reed hospital. Tell everyone about those.

WESTWOOD: Well, "The New York Times" is reporting that president Trump called up some of his confidantes from the presidential suite at Walter Reed and revealed his idea for his exit from the hospital. He wanted to walk out of the hospital appearing maybe frail and feeble at first, but then unbutton his dress shirt to reveal a Superman t-shirt underneath, as some sort of sign of strength and vitality as he was leaving the hospital.

Obviously, that stunt did not happen. He left the hospital in a kind of normal way. But it just shows the lengths to which President Trump has wanted to go to project the sense that the virus hasn't weakened him at all -- Victor and Christi.

BLACKWELL: Sarah Westwood for us there at the White House, thanks so much.

CNN contributor, Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, joins me now.

So, we're going to put the Superman antics aside. But I want to talk about what we learned and what we have not learned from this letter from Dr. Conley.

Good morning to you, by the way.

So this letter says that the president is no longer considered a transmission risk to others. No confirmation of a negative test for the virus. Is it safe for the president to travel on Air Force One and the presidential limo, and then campaign for three straight days?

DR. ABDUL EL-SAYED, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, I want to step back for a second.


EL-SAYED: The fact that they didn't use the regular test that we have known sensitivity and specificity for, two med risks that epidemiologists use to tell you about the quality of a test, how many falls positives, home -- false positives, how many false negatives. The fact that they clearly did not use those tests to talk about advanced diagnostics means that they were looking for a test that they could then spin to make this particular argument because it's clear it's coming from the president's doctor.


This is coming from the president. In fact, all of the information that we've gotten about the president's health has usually just come via the doctor from the president. And so that's number one.

Number two, right, there are open questions right now. Number one, he wouldn't have met criteria in terms of just basic CDC protocol.

And in fact, the CDC recommends for someone who has had a serious case, which the president had, he had to be hospitalized, his oxygen saturation dipped below 94 several times, he needed supplemental oxygen, that those folks require 20 days, 20 days. He's not even at ten from today. And that -- that's one point.

The second points also the fact that, you know, as much as we understand the president's want to get back there on the campaign trail, ask yourself if you or someone you worked on air force, if you were someone who worked at the White House after 37-plus people tested positive from one super-spread event, would you want to be on an airplane with the president of the United States based on what is the flimsiest of arguments about his non-contagiousness? I don't think so.

And what that indicates is just that he is being, unfortunately, himself, deeply irresponsible about this virus and its risks, wanting to play them down at every corner, putting the politics ahead of the science. And trying to search for people who will do his bidding, and some modicum of something to stand on to do that.

And it's unfortunate to see that he's putting, again, politics ahead of the public health here.

BLACKWELL: Yeah. Most important sentence from that letter was "I release the following information with the permission of President Donald J. Trump," because everything goes through his clearance.

So, I looked over not just the memo that came out last night but the past few days. And I want to put this up. Let's put the full screen up.

On October 7th, Dr. Conley reported that the president was fever free for more than four days. On the 8th, there was no mention of the president's temperature or a fever in that memo. There was no statement, no update at all on the 9th, and then last night, Dr. Conley reported the president had been fever-free for well over 24 hours.

Am I reading too deeply into this, or am I characterizing this wrong to say that this is cherry picked happy talk? Whatever the good news is -- remember, we heard from Dr. Conley on the first update that, you know, he wouldn't confirm oxygen or no supplemental oxygen, and the next day said, well, I just wanted to give everyone the optimistic view to reflect how upbeat everyone is.

EL-SAYED: Yah. Look, noticed that, too. The fact of the matter is that people don't just pop fevers out of nowhere. If he hasn't been febrile for over 24 hours, they're picking some number that can seem reassuring.

But that means that two days ago, right, he probably had a fever. People don't pop fevers for now reason. They have fevers because there are viruses in their body.

And what that indicates is that at least two days ago, the president's body was reacting to a virus that was inside of it by spiking a fever. That's one of the things the body does to try and raise the temperature on the virus sore the bacteria in your body to try and kill it. And it's a marker of a much more active immune response. Think about it like the hood of a car getting hot. The engine's working, that's the same case with the immune system.

So it's pretty clear to me that, you know, within two days, they wouldn't have said the 24-hour number unless it was the largest limit. So, within two days, he's had a fever, indicating that he has virus. And now they're looking for some test in some interpretation of a test to make an argument that he's -- he's A-okay, ready to go. Of course, that's the president's timeline, not the virus's, and you can look at that from the broader perspective of American life, it's always on the president's timeline, not the virus' timeline in America.

BLACKWELL: Yeah. And, you know, the president told Fox News on Friday afternoon, aired on Friday night, that he was medication free, no confirmation of that from Dr. Conley.

Dr. El-Sayed, stay with us, because we've got more to talk about, about coronavirus, beyond the president and his return to the campaign. So, we're going to continue that conversation a little later this hour.

PAUL: Vice President Mike Pence rallied supporters in Florida yesterday. One of the events took place at a very large retirement communities -- one of the largest in the nation, in fact.

Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh tweeted this, 3,000 people were there. A CNN team was also there and said the campaign wasn't following CDC guidelines. A lot of the people who attended weren't wearing masks or maintaining a safe social distance.

BLACKWELL: Presidential candidate Joe Biden, he spoke to supporters in Pennsylvania yesterday.

PAUL: CNN's Jessica Dean's on the trail following the Biden campaign for us.

Good morning, Jessica.


JESSICA DEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Victor and Christi.


Former Vice President Joe Biden back in the critical battleground state of Pennsylvania. He traveled here to Erie, Pennsylvania, on Saturday. It is located in a Pennsylvania county that premium won narrowly back in 2016.

It's a place with the kind of voters that the Biden campaign really thinks they can win back with Joe Biden's economic message which is the one he delivered right here on Saturday.

JOE BIDEN (D), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: The top 100 billionaires in the middle of this pandemic, they made $300 billion additional dollars. Hear me now -- 100 individuals made one -- $300 billion this year. What did the bottom half get? They got -- they got to slide down because the fact is the president can only see the world from Park Avenue.

I see it from Scranton. I see it from Claymont for real. You know what I'm talking about. You all see it from Erie.

DEAN: In the meantime, the campaign reports that Vice President Biden underwent PCR testing, that gold standard COVID test on Saturday, and that it came back negative. They say he will be tested regularly and always when he travels.

PAUL: Jessica, thank you so much.

Let's talk to the political -- talk about the political headlines with Alex Burns, CNN political analyst and national political correspondent for "The New York Times."

Alex, it's always good to see you again. Thank you for being here.


PAUL: I want to talk about the latest poll numbers that we're seeing. This from the "Washington Post"/ABC poll. It looks like Vice President Biden is up 12 points among registered voters, 54 percent for Biden, 42 percent for President Trump.

What would you attribute that to at this point?

BURNS: Look, I think that we have seen over the last few weeks that the race has widened out again at a point when Republicans hoped that it would tighten up. This really follows the first presidential debate in which President Trump was widely seen as having behaved in a just completely inappropriate way toward his challenger and then, of course, the coronavirus outbreak at the White House that has refocused the attention of the electorate on this disease that was already the dominant issue in the election.

And, Christi, I think that when some of us started to see a week or two ago some of these double-digit leads for Vice President Biden, I think there was a lot of healthy skepticism about whether he would be able to keep it up. That's still there, a couple weeks left in this race. But the fact of the matter is, those double-digit leads are no longer just a flash in the pan. We've seen that now for more than a week, just really enormous margins for the Democratic ticket.

PAUL: Well, and your latest write in "the New York Times" points to polls that indicate President Trump is alienating women, alienating seniors, suburbanites. So what -- where does that leave the GOP? Because there are some surveys, as I understand it, among private GOP surveys, that show solid red states are still safe for President Trump.

BURNS: Well, that's right. The Republicans I've spoken to, especially over the last week, they remain pretty confident that in states that are mostly white and mostly rural, that the president will ultimately be fine. But they also see in these surveys that some of those rural white states, a place like Montana, a place like Kansas, it's far closer than it ought to be based on those demographic and partisan fundamentals in a presidential race.

And where that really ends up pinching the president, hurting his party, is not in those rural white states. It's in the Sun Belt, the red states like Georgia, Texas, Arizona, where for the longest time the Republican Party has relied on a coalition that was not just rural white folks but also suburban voters, some minority voters. And those are groups that have just moved -- you mentioned seniors, those are all groups that have moved hard against the president, you know, over the course of his term but especially over the last few months.

PAUL: So tomorrow we know that Amy Coney Barrett is going to be before the Senate Judiciary Committee as they start the process for the Supreme Court nomination. Vice President Biden has been reluctance, as you know, and has been asked as has -- has Kamala Harris to expound on questions about whether they would stack the Supreme Court.

Does he need to answer that question, especially now that the hearing is starting and more focus will be on that?

BURNS: Well, as a reporter, I'd certainly like him to answer the question. We heard him answer it during the Democratic primaries. We heard his running mate, Senator Harris, answer during the primaries.

They answered it differently during the primaries. Vice president Biden dismissed the idea of adding seats to the Supreme Court. She said in an interview with me that she was open to it, absolutely open to it. We've not heard her say that again.

I think this is an awkward one for their ticket. I think that, you know, they have clearly made the calculation that they can evade this question for the next few weeks and the voters will not punish them for it.


And given how much else is going on politically right now, they may be right about that. It does point to a set of real governing challenges if they do win this election. Real tensions within their own party where it seems pretty clear based on what he said in the past. The Vice President Biden is interested or has not been interested in the past in a fight over redrawing the judiciary. A lot of Democrats, including folks in the House and Senate feel strongly, strongly otherwise.

PAUL: All right. Alex Burns, we are grateful every weekend for your perspective and your willingness to get up early on a weekend. Thank you.

BURNS: My pleasure. Thanks.

PAUL: Sure.

BLACKWELL: It's looking very unlikely that Congress will pass an economic relief and stimulus package before Election Day. The president tried to resurrect negotiations which he himself called off days ago by offering roughly $1.8 trillion stimulus plan. But sources tell CNN that Senate Republicans criticized the offer in a conference call yesterday. According to "The Washington Post," White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows said if he took that message back to the president they would have to, quote, all come to my funeral.

The House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has called the proposal insufficient.

Former Democratic presidential nominee Andrew Yang says that both sides should just take the deal.


ANDREW YANG (D), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: if I'm Nancy Pelosi, I take this deal. If I'm Mitch McConnell, I take this deal. This is great for the American people. They're suggesting another $1,200 in direct cash relief to millions of Americans, $400 a week in weekly federal unemployment benefits.

This would be a lifeline for millions of Americans, and I have no idea why this is not being passed. Instead they're grandstanding and playing politics while people are hurting.


BLACKWELL: So, the president's proposal is still $400 billion short of the $2.2 trillion bill that the House Democrats passed. Senate Republicans have united behind a $500 billion COVID relief package.

Today at 9:00, you want to make sure to watch Jake's show. He's got White House chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow and Kate Bedingfield from the Biden campaign. Jake Tapper on "STATE OF THE UNION" and so will be Senator Maize Hirono and Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson. It's today at 9:00 Eastern, right here on CNN.

PAUL: So, the number of new coronavirus cases are keeping pace with estimates as we move into the fall. There's a key model now predicting close to 400,000 American deaths by February 1st. We'll talk about that.

BLACKWELL: Plus, Hurricane Delta and the severe weather, even a tornado in the Southeast. We'll have an update on the damage next.



PAUL: We're seeing pretty alarming rise in coronavirus cases across the country right now.

BLACKWELL: Almost 30 states are showing week-to-week increases in cases. Only two are showing decreases. Now there's a new estimate that suggests that the U.S. could see almost 400,000 COVID-related deaths by February.

PAUL: CNN's Polo Sandoval live for us in New York this morning.

So that is what the estimation could be. The question is, is there a way to fend is off so we don't hit it, Polo?

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, it's a warning that we're hearing from health officials, right, Victor and Christi. And remember, these are all predictions. We don't have to get to that point, according to multiple health authorities who expect that we could potentially see the death count, the COVID death count nearly doubled to over 400,000 by February if the nation eases off on these measures like the mask wearing, like the social distancing.

And they also, the other telltale number that we're watching right now is hospitalizations. Wisconsin alone recently reaching a record number of hospitalizations, the highest number of they've seen since the start of the pandemic. Then you heard from an emergency room doctor yesterday on CNN who said they're seeing more COVID patients and fear that that could be signaling the start of this dreaded second wave.


SANDOVAL (voice-over): Across the United States, a rise in coronavirus cases.

DR. MEGAN RANNEY, EMERGENCY ROOM PHYSICIAN: We are all seeing increasing numbers of COVID-19 patients who are coming into our ERs, who are getting really sick, requiring hospitalization and even intensive care.

SANDOVAL: Over 54,000 cases reported on Saturday, making it the fourth day in a row of 50,000-plus cases. And one day after health officials reported the highest number of new cases in a day since mid- August. The current death toll over 214,000.

Former CDC Director Tom Frieden says that number could be even higher.

DR. TOM FRIEDEN, FORMER CDC DIRECTOR: So, if you die from cancer and you also have diabetes, you still died from cancer. If you died from COVID and you also had diabetes, you died from COVID. COVID does affect older people much, much more than younger people. And many older people have lots of other health problems. So that ends up on the death certificate.

SANDOVAL: The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation out of the University of Washington predicting that the U.S. death toll could reach almost 395,000 by February, with daily deaths hitting 2,300 by mid-January.

DR. CHRIS MURRAY, DIRECTOR, UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON INSTITUTE FOR HEALTH METRICS AND EVALUATION: We're expecting both cases and, unfortunately, deaths to really surge as we head into late November and December, and probably peak sometime in January.

SANDOVAL: And with cold weather months approaching, health officials stressing the importance of wearing a mask.

MURRAY: Every little bits of increased mask wearing is going to save lives.

SANDOVAL: As a vaccine is still in development.

FRIEDEN: For a vaccine to work, it's got to not only be safe and effective but be accessible and trusted.


SANDOVAL: This morning, many of these COVID spikes we're seeing in parts of the Midwest also here in the Northeast, across the river in New Jersey, officials there monitoring some areas of concern. Yesterday, the governor of New Jersey saying that they are starting to see numbers that they are describing as quite sobering.


Back to you.

BLACKWELL: Polo Sandoval, thanks so much.

Let's bring back epidemiologist and public health and CNN contributor, Dr. Abdul Sayed.

Let's talk about this growth and something we heard from Dr. Deborah Birx, the coordinator of the White House Coronavirus Task Force. This is what she said about the spread in the Northeast and what has to change over the next few months.


DR. DEBORAH BIRX, WHITE HOUSE CORONAVIRUS RESPONSE COORDINATOR: What we're seeing in the community is much more spread occurring in households and in social occasions, small gatherings where people have come inside, taken off their masks to eat or drink or socialize with one another. What we did in the spring is not going to work in the fall.


BLACKWELL: So people are coming in now. They're starting to make Thanksgiving travel plans to see family, Christmas, as well. What's your concern? What's the advice?

EL-SAYED: Well, look, this is something that epidemiologists and physicians and scientists have been worried about, that the fall was going to see a huge spike, in large part because, A, people are tired of following the recommendations, simple things like wearing a mask, washing your hands, staying outdoors versus indoors, staying six feet apart. And B, because it's harder to do those things because we're moving inside, because the weather's getting colder, particularly in the Northeast and the Midwest and out West.

And so, the recommendations is -- I know it's tiring, I know it's frustrating, I know that folks want to get back to normal life. The faster that we can do the things we need to do to get through this virus, the faster we can get back to normal life.

What does that mean? Making sure to wear a mask. Do it outside even if it's chilly. There's a lot of things that you can buy to make it warmer on a patio. Don't do it in inside.

Make sure that you are -- you're washing your hands and that you're staying distant if you can. This is really a treacherous time. The schools coming back. There's a lot at stake here. And so, folks really need to tuck into the recommendations. We've got to get through this fall, try and keep the spread of the virus down and the mortality down and hopefully get to a point where we've got a credible vaccine that's out there, and that we no longer have to worry about this. The faster way around is t is through it.

BLACKWELL: You know, before the show, I had not planned to ask this, but in Coy's sports segment, this stood out to me. The Gators coach Dan Mullen wants to see 90,000 fans in the Swamp for the game against LSU on Saturday.

Now they were wearing masks. But 90,000, even masked, is that advisable? I mean, I can't -- they're not socially distanced because they're shoulder to shoulder. But if they're wearing masks, what's your view on that request even?

EL-SAYED: No. I mean, it's super irresponsible. Arguably, we shouldn't be playing football in the first place.

Football is not necessary. I love football, don't get me wrong. I live in Ann Arbor, the big house is literal two miles from my house. It is the biggest stadium in the country. I wish we could go to the big house.

It's not the right thing to do because, of course, if you really want to turn the Swamp into an actual swamp, have 90,000 people in there in the middle of a COVID-19 pandemic. It's not worth it.

And turning something enjoyable like college football, which we're playing, you can watch on TV, into a super-spreading event, it's not worth it. It's irresponsible. And coaches should stick to coaching.

BLACKWELL: All right. Dr. Abdul Sayed, thanks so much.

EL-SAYED: Thank you.

PAUL: You know, a tornado touched down north of Atlanta last night. One person was injured. It damaged a homeless shelter as well. Take a look here, up to 30 people were displaced because of the damage. That's the shelter there.

BLACKWELL: The tornado was part of a series of strong storms across North Georgia that were caused by Hurricane Delta. The winds, they ripped over trees and ripped into homes. We, of course, saw the heavy flooding in streets.

Atlanta Fire Rescue says they responded to more than a dozen calls for vehicles trapped by those floodwaters.

The next few days will be key for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett. She's set to face lawmakers and could be questioned on key issues like abortion rights.

We'll talk about what you should expect over the next few days.



VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: In Denver, the fatal shooting of a person near two opposing protests is being investigated as a homicide. We're going to show some video now. I want you to listen closely because you can hear the gunshot a few seconds in. This was recorded during an interview. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The importance of being here today?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it's important to be able to show --



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I thought that was fireworks.


CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: Now, the shooting happened yesterday. It was near a police support rally and a counterprotest.

Television station KUSA says the suspect is a private security guard that it had hired. The station's been contracting guards to protect their staff.

Capitol Hill's bracing for a busy, likely contentious week ahead.

Tomorrow, the Senate Judiciary Committee is holding their first hearing for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett. Now Republicans promise a quick confirmation to put Barrett on the high court before Election Day. Democrats plan to call out Barrett's possible impact on issues from health care to reproductive rights.

CNN's Ariane de Vogue, all things SCOTUS, she knows them.

Ariane, good to see you this morning. Help us understand what we should expect to see tomorrow?

ARIANE DE VOGUE, CNN SUPREME COURT REPORTER: Right, a lot at stake here. This is a lifetime appointment. She could solidify the conservative majority on this bench for decades.

And think about it in the long term, right, abortion, LGBTQ rights, the Second Amendment. But think about the short-term implications. It was just in 2000 that the Supreme Court decided the fate of the election.

That may not happen again, but there are a lot of legal challenges going on. If it did come to the Supreme Court, she may be on the Supreme Court for that decision.


And then a week later, the court's hearing a challenge to the Affordable Care Act.

The Trump administration is asking that the entire law be invalidated during a pandemic. And her critics point to the fact that when she was a law professor, she seemed skeptical of some of the legal underpinnings of the law. Now this case is different. But still, her critics are looking at it very carefully. This is how

it's going to play out tomorrow at 9:00 a.m., you're going to see the top -- the Republican on the committee, Lindsey Graham, he will gavel in these hearings. And then you'll hear from Dianne Feinstein. She's the top Democrat.

And then each member has ten minutes to give a statement. And there are 22 members. Then, Amy Coney Barrett will be introduced, probably by her home state senators. Then finally we'll hear from her, we'll hear her opening statement.

And we saw her at the White House just a few weeks ago. But now you'll really get a sense of who she is and how she views the court. And these opening statements, Christi, they very often set the tone for the rest of the hearings.

PAUL: Now, there have been questions, as you know, about her stance on Roe versus Wade leading up to tomorrow's hearing. Friday she updated her Senate paperwork to disclose two talks that she gave, they were hosted by two anti-abortion student groups. She also submitted an ad that she signed referring to Roe versus Wade that said, and I want to quote this: We faculty and staff at the University of Notre Dame reaffirm our full support of our university's commitment to the right to life. We renew our call for the unborn to be protected in law and welcomed in life, and we voice our love and support for the mothers who bear them.

It certainly would indicate exactly where she stands, you would think, on Roe v. Wade. How problematic might that be for her?

DE VOGUE: Christi, what's hard to believe is Roe v. Wade is almost 50 years old. Once again it's going to be front and center at a Senate confirmation hearing. Like you said, late Friday, I think around 10:00 p.m., she sent that additional information to the Senate. And she basically said when she was a law professor she had forgotten, but she did address two student groups that opposed abortion.

So her critics are going to look at that hard because unlike most recent nominees, there is a paper trail on the issue of abortion for Amy Coney Barrett. When she was a law professor, not only did she indicate that she opposed abortion, but she also was critical of Roe.

But at her 2017 confirmation hearing for the lower court, she was asked about this and she said two things, she said, look, Roe is precedent. It's the law of the land. And she said that as a judge, you put your personal convictions aside, and you just look at the law.

But her critics think that if she's confirmed, she will be a vote to gut Roe v. Wade, or if not severely cut it back. So you can expect that that issue, maybe more than any other issue, is going to dominate the hearings on Monday.

PAUL: Uh-huh. All right. Yeah, that and health care, as you said.

Ariane de Vogue, always good to have you here. Thank you.

DE VOGUE: Thanks, Christi.

PAUL: Uh-huh.

BLACKWELL: So Democrats and Republicans are making plans in case there's no clear winner on November 3rd or even weeks beyond that. What you need to know about casting your vote. We have that for you next.



BLACKWELL: All right. Forty-two minutes after the hour. There have been some developments in some court cases, challenges to voting restrictions in two states, specifically, Texas and Pennsylvania.

PAUL: Yeah. And we were talking about Texas yesterday. I want to give the update here. Last night, a federal appeals court granted a temporary stay allowing a directive now from the Republican governor that restricts ballot drop boxes to one per county. That means they will stay in place.

They want to limit drop box locations, and the thing is that means there are counties that say, even Houston itself, where Houston is, 4.7 million people live there. There will be one drop box. Critics say the move amounts to voter suppression. A federal judge had blocked Abbott's order, so the temporary stay means the policy will be allowed until the court can further consider the arguments.

BLACKWELL: Let's go to Pennsylvania now. A federal judge there denied the Trump campaign and Republican Party's bid to make ballot drop boxes unconstitutional altogether. Now the judge rejected the Republicans' argument that there was a fear of voter fraud, saying that it's possible but not proven likely.

Now that judge in Pennsylvania denied the bid by the campaign to make them unconstitutional. We of course will have more on that throughout the day I'm sure as the political shows deal with the challenges that are coming up. The president has attacked mail-in ballots almost routinely. And we could see more uncertainty over the matter in the coming weeks.

CNN's Pamela Brown has the latest.


PAMELA BROWN, CNN SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): President Trump is continuing to undermine the integrity of the election.

DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: They're sending out millions and millions of ballots. Are they sending them to all Democrats? This is going to be the second biggest political scandal in history.

BROWN: Trump is spreading disinformation. Vote-by-mail states send ballots to all active voters, and there are no signs of a looming scandal. He went on.

TRUMP: You're never going to know who won the election, you know, it's going to be two weeks later.


BROWN: But election night results are always unofficial. The very real chance there won't be a winner on election night is something even Trump security team warned is not a problem.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On November 3rd, we might not know the outcome of our election, and that's okay. We're going to need your patience until official results are announced.

BROWN: The plot to kidnap Michigan's Democratic governor along with Trump's disinformation and fiery rhetoric is raising fears of voter intimidation on election day as tensions rise.

DANA NESSEL (D), MICHIGAN ATTORNEY GENERAL: Not just a Michigan problem, it's an American problem. I think there's going to be more incidents to come.

BROWN: Michigan's attorney general is working on guidance for law enforcement on how to handle guns at polling places. In 11 states and D.C., there is a ban on firearms at the polls. But many swing states, including Michigan don't have strict rules against it.

TRUMP: Bad things happen in Philadelphia.

BROWN: In Philadelphia, a judge rejected the Trump campaign's lawsuit over its attempt last month to use supporters as unofficial poll watchers ahead of election day. Something Philadelphia officials wouldn't allow because it's against the law. The president fumed about it at the debate.

TRUMP: They're very safe, very nice thing. They were thrown out. They weren't allowed to watch.

BROWN: All campaigns are allowed to have registered poll watchers at official sites on Election Day. But the judge upheld that it is illegal at satellite election locations being used for pre-election day voting. And now both parties are gearing up for the possibility of a contested election with no clear winner on November 3rd or weeks beyond.

The "Washington Post" reports Speaker Nancy Pelosi has discussed the issue in meetings. One scenario involves invoking the Electoral Count Act, an obscure, untested, 19th century law which gives Congress the power to settle state-level disputes.

Last week, Pelosi acknowledged any congressional involvement would be messy.

REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: If all that chaos takes us to a time that could be past the date when the electoral college must meet, we will be ready. BROWN (on camera): The clampdown on disinformation around the

election, Twitter is now announcing several changes it's making including blocking any Twitter user including the candidates themselves, from declaring victory before state officials have announced so or before two national news outlets have made their public projections.

Pamela Brown, CNN, Washington.


PAUL: Pamela, thank you so much.

Tonight at 9:00 p.m., join Fareed Zakaria for an in-depth look at President Trump's impact on the relationships between the U.S. and its allies. "How the World Sees America," a Fareed Zakaria special, it airs tonight right here on CNN.

And still ahead, this incredible act of human kindness. We want to share with you, the story of a New York nurse so committed to one of her patients -- we'll tell you what she did for him.



PAUL: So, listen, a New York nurse is refining what commitment to a patient means. This ultimate act of human kindness.

I want to show you 9-year-old Jashia. There he is on his bike. Kelli Dabek has been his nurse nearly since he was four. He has special needs and other health issues. Kelly says Jashia spent four years in a rehab home after his mother unexpectedly passed away. And then he went into foster square.

Well, that's when she said, uh-huh, not having that. So, she jumped into action two years ago and became certified for emergency foster care and took him in.


KELLI DABEK, NURSE WHO ADOPTED 9-YEAR-OLD PATIENT WITH SPECIAL NEEDS: We knew what we had to do and my whole family, we knew. He goes to a neurologist. He goes to a G.I. doctor. He goes to an endocrinologist, because he is also diagnosed with failure to thrive (ph).


PAUL: So, Kelli, here's the thing, officially adopted Jashia last month and the whole family said we are in this.


ALEXA DABEK, NURSE'S DAUGHTER : School work. I have two jobs. I'm always busy, but every chance I get, he comes to dinner with me and my friends and he'll just spend time with us. All my friends love him. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What do you think about your sisters? Huh?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You guys are really close?

HAYLEY DABEK, NURSE'S DAUGHTER: Yeah. We always have been.


PAUL: Oh my goodness, see? As if the front line people aren't doing enough. She's a nurse. And we always know that all those folks on the front lines, they really care about the people that they are helping, and this is just above and beyond to get certified for emergency foster care that could not have been easy as it was.

BLACKWELL: Yeah. And she said she knew what she had to do. There was no question. She knew what she had to do.

PAUL: Good people out there.


PAUL: Good human beings. Just a little reminder, because sometimes we tend to forget. So, go out there and make good memories today.

And, by the way, "INSIDE POLITICS WITH JOHN KING" is next.

BLACKWELL: Yes. But, up first, we're going to leave you with another standout moment from "SNL" last night.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Your responsibility --


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. Vice president, I'm speaking. I'm speaking.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well -- well, I'm just trying --



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yeah, yeah, but I'm speaking. See, I'm speaking right now. Estoy hablando, in Nevada, Arizona, some parts of Texas, I'm speaking.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I understand that. I understand that.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yeah, I don't think you do --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I do. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: -- because you're talking, and I'm speaking.


See, this administration has consistently lied to us about the virus. They said they wanted to keep us calm, well, let me ask the American people this -- how calm were you when you didn't know where you were going to get your next roll of toilet paper? Huh?

How calm were you when you were staring at that cardboard tube when you finished the roll and thought, well, it's technically paper?

And how calm were you when even that tube was gone and you looked at your old t-shirts and a pair of scissors and thought, are we doing this?