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New Day Sunday
Intelligence Agencies Assessing Damage From Mar-A-Lago Documents; Judge Leaning Toward Special Master To Review Mar-A-Lago Documents; Pearl River Expected To Hit Major Flood Stage Tomorrow; State Of Emergency Declared In Mississippi Amid Major Flooding; FDA Expected To Authorize Pfizer's Updated COVID-19 Booster Within The Next Few Days; COVID Hospitalizations Begin To Decline, But Still Remain High; More Than 17,000 Confirmed Monkeypox Cases Now In U.S.; Monkeypox Cases Disproportionately Impacting Black, Hispanic Men. Aired 6-7a ET
Aired August 28, 2022 - 06:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
AMARA WALKER, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, everyone, and welcome to your NEW DAY. I'm Amara Walker.
BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, Amara. I'm Boris Sanchez.
There are new developments this morning pertaining to those classified documents taken from Mar-a-Lago. We're going to tell you why the director of National Intelligence is now involved and how a judge is responding to Trump's request for a special master in the case.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MAYOR CHOKWE LUMUMBA, JACKSON, MISSISSIPPI: If you are capable of getting out now, get out now.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALKER: Evacuations are under way in parts of Mississippi in anticipation of heavy flooding. How the state is preparing and why this will be the second round of flooding for some.
SANCHEZ: Plus, we are on the eve of history. One day away from the launch of Artemis I, NASA's next mission to the moon. How the forecast is shaping up and some of the more interesting things that are heading up to space in that rocket.
WALKER: Plus, how extreme weather is uncovering some of the world's ancient treasures.
SANCHEZ: Thanks so much for waking up with us this Sunday, August 28th. We hope you're having a great weekend, the start of a new week. Good morning, Amara.
WALKER: I have a confession to make. I just gorged myself with a cupcake for breakfast.
WALKER: So I'm beating you out on the prosciutto, healthier -- I'm much healthier than you. It's good to be with you, Boris.
SANCHEZ: Cupcake is a good breakfast. Yes.
WALKER: Yes, the sugar keeping me awake. Some news to get to this morning. Up first, assessing the damage to National Intelligence from classified documents found at Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate. The director of National Intelligence tells Congress she is conducting a damage assessment of the documents. Material recovered in January included classified and top secret information.
SANCHEZ: Also, a judge is considering Trump's request for a special master to review material from the Mar-a-Lago search. She says she has the preliminary intent to grant that request. That means that she is prepared to appoint a third party that would sift through documents and filter out any privileged material. The government has until Tuesday to respond, a hearing on this matter is set for Thursday.
WALKER: And, of course, all of this follows the release of the heavily redacted version of the affidavit that authorized the search of Trump's residence. CNN reporter Marshall Cohen has more.
MARSHALL COHEN, CNN REPORTER: New developments this weekend in the investigation of Donald Trump's handling or possible mishandling of classified documents. The top U.S. intelligence official says that intel agencies are now conducting a damage assessment of the documents that Trump took with him from the White House to Mar-a-Lago.
Avril Haines, the director of National Intelligence, told U.S. lawmakers in a letter that her team and the Justice Department are reviewing the materials that were recovered from Mar-a-Lago to see what is still classified. She also said that once that's done her office will -- quote -- "lead an Intelligence Community assessment of the potential risks to national security that would result from the disclosure of the relevant documents."
Now, this all comes shortly after the DOJ released the FBI affidavit that investigators used to secure that historic search warrant of Mar- a-Lago. DOJ refused to release that affidavit, but they were ordered by a federal judge to make public a partially unredacted version. And that affidavit, once we got to see what was inside of it, it showed how investigators came to believe that there was probable cause that crimes had been committed at Mar-a-Lago, specifically related to possible mishandling of classified material, as well as potential obstruction of justice. For his part, Donald Trump has denied all wrongdoing.
In the sworn affidavit, an FBI agent described how the National Archives found 184 classified documents among the 15 boxes that were recovered earlier this year from Mar-a-Lago. There were 67 documents marked confidential, 92 were marked secret and 25 were top secret. That's the highest level. According to the affidavit some of the materials had classification markings indicating that the records were about CIA sources and spies. [06:05:00]
Other documents were related to extremely sensitive NSA surveillance programs. All this is precisely why the U.S. intelligence community is now doing the damage assessment.
Marshall Cohen, CNN, Washington.
SANCHEZ: Marshall, thank you so much. Let's discuss this damage assessment for the Mar-a-Lago documents now with CNN national security analyst Juliette Kayyem. Juliette, always great to have you on, especially bright and early. We know it's tough. Appreciate you, good morning.
JULIETTE KAYYEM, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ANALYST: Good morning.
SANCHEZ: Talk to us about the work being conducted by the ODNI. How does this process look?
KAYYEM: So, it is an important assessment at this stage because we have a tendency to view this story as being about Donald Trump. But the truth is it is about the Biden administration and our present national security capabilities. And so what the ODNI is doing is basically making an intelligence assessment, these are typical assessments, this is a very atypical situation, in which all of the different intelligence agencies that may have been impacted by potential disclosure or even just the fact that these documents weren't protected will assess whether that information is still pressing, whether it is still relevant, whether it may have made someone or some entity vulnerable, its potential impact importantly on our allies and their confidence in our ability to keep secrets.
So this is going to be a thorough review that really puts this in the present tense. This is one of my concerns with this story is that we often look at it like, oh, there's Trump who did something in the past and he shouldn't have done that. This is really impacting our present U.S. intelligence capabilities.
SANCHEZ: So what can potentially come after the review, especially if it is found that, you know, secrets may have been exposed?
KAYYEM: Yes. So we actually don't know a lot at this stage. We don't know if in January when it was determined that certain, say, human assets, those would be people that are either helping us or our own spies who have infiltrated some bad entity in other government or a terrorist organization say. We don't know whether there was a response then.
In other words, the -- this -- just the fact that this information was not protected makes someone vulnerable, one of these assets vulnerable. So we don't know if people have been pulled. There has been some reporting by "The New York Times" and others about concerns about the vulnerability of these -- of our -- what we call the our assets or allies' assets in terms of whether they have been protected or whether they have been exposed, so that would be primary, just to protect human life. The second is to try to give some confidence to ourselves and to our allies about what in fact has been exposed, what needs to be changed, and how do we have to pivot from what Donald Trump did because, you know, we always go to sort of what his motivation is, in many ways it is irrelevant for this assessment whether he -- you know, worst case scenario, whether he gave them to someone or just simply that he's reckless and has this weird sort of, you know, desire to keep this information, that doesn't really matter for this assessment. His motivation doesn't matter.
All we know is that information has been exposed and it is relevant. So we'll have to -- the intelligence agencies will make that assessment and then make a determination if they have to pivot or align or reassess some of their capabilities.
SANCHEZ: Though it may not matter his intent, in terms of the review, I am curious, because I've asked this of other intelligence officials --
SANCHEZ: -- and it is hard to get a simple reason. Is there a legal and perhaps reasonable explanation why Donald Trump would want to hold on to these documents?
KAYYEM: No. I mean, there really isn't at this stage. And he doesn't have security clearance at this stage. President Biden when he came in based on the reckless behavior of Donald Trump and intelligence does not provide him with any access to classified information. So there is really no reason that I can think of that would be justified in terms of his retaining this.
It is not his information. It is not the president's intelligence. It is the United States intelligence. And this is important because what we have to -- we have present national security needs. This isn't about Donald Trump's conduct as president or even as a former president. It is about our capabilities today and how he threatens them.
SANCHEZ: And, Juliette, the judge signaling the preliminary intent --
KAYYEM: Sorry, hold on.
SANCHEZ: You got me there?
KAYYEM: Yes. Sorry about that.
SANCHEZ: You can hear me now? OK. No, no worries. Technical difficulties, they come up with being up so early in the morning. Again, we appreciate you joining us.
KAYYEM: Thank you.
SANCHEZ: The judge signaling preliminary intent to assign a special master in this case.
SANCHEZ: That has to be kind of a delicate decision because of the content that that special master is going to be reviewing, right?
KAYYEM: Yes, exactly. This is a bit -- this is a little bit confusing so I'm going to reserve judgment. I know a lot of lawyers have been concerned about this preliminary assessment in terms of why would -- why would this go to a special master, especially because Donald Trump's request was, let's just say, not exactly great lawyering. I mean, it was not clear in fact what he wanted.
I'll reserve judgment at this stage. You know, if there is some evidence of privileged material, rather than classified, in other words his conversations as president, sort of a privileged conversation, yes, that would not be relevant to espionage or any of the -- any of the legal claims made against Donald Trump. So I think we should reserve judgment.
I would say it is unusual. I don't think this is great for the United States because they are going to have to make yet another case about, you know, why they're doing this, and justifying it, and each time that sort of exposes some of the information that they're trying to protect. It is a catch-22 for them.
It also sort of increases the political noise each legal challenge. And we really do have to take a step back. And while this is a legal fight about President Trump and his liability or culpability or recklessness or whatever -- whatever word you want to put before it it is really important to remember that we have -- we have -- we have a country still to protect and that -- those documents may be relevant to our present capabilities and, of course, our ability to protect ourselves today.
SANCHEZ: Juliette Kayyem, we're grateful for your expertise. Thanks.
KAYYEM: Thank you.
SANCHEZ: Of course. And if you want more information, we recommend heading over to CNN.com for an even deeper dive into what these unsealed -- rather what the unsealed affidavit says and what it does not say. We have a page by page annotation that breaks it all down in very easy to understand language.
WALKER: This morning, Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves has declared a state of emergency for parts of the state bracing for some major flooding. The state is using drones to monitor water levels and has deployed 126,000 sandbags in preparation for rising river levels. Now, residents in Jackson have been urged to get out now as Mississippi's Pearl River is expected to crest at 36 feet tomorrow. A whole day earlier than initially projected.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LUMUMBA: If you are capable of getting out now, get out now. Get out as soon as possible to prevent any incident or challenge with people trying to leave the area all at once. It is possible for approximately 100 to 150 homes to be impacted by this year's event.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALKER: And Jackson's mayor is also warning that there is a high likelihood that homes impacted during a similar flooding event in 2020 may experience flooding again this time around.
SANCHEZ: And those communities could start feeling the effects as early as this evening. So let's bring in CNN meteorologist Allison Chinchar. She's live at the weather center for us. Allison, how widespread is the flooding expected to be?
ALLISON CHINCHAR, CNN METEOROLOGIST: It is mainly across two focused states. We're talking Mississippi and Louisiana. The key thing here is the timeline. When you move that timeline up by 24 hours that limits the time that these folks have to evacuate, to get out before that water level gets too high.
Here's where the current flood warnings are. Again, focused across Mississippi as well as Louisiana. This is a look at the Pearl River, current level is 35.16 feet. It is forecast to get to 36 feet, which does bring it into that major flood stage. That's where we expect it to crest, by tomorrow morning. So you're talking less than 24 hours from now.
In addition to that, that's regardless of whether we get any additional rain. But we do have rain in the forecast. Again, we're not talking six to 10 inches of widespread rain. But there will be several areas of pop-up showers and thunderstorms all along the Gulf Coast. The heaviest will be focused across Florida. But, again, notice these areas of Mississippi, eastern Texas and Louisiana still looking at one to three inches of additional rainfall possible.
We also have still some areas of severe thunderstorms and flooding potential across the Midwest. Severe wind gusts, large hail, even a couple of tornadoes are also possible. So two separate areas here that we're talking about flooding. But one other factor that is going to be for much of the Gulf Coast is also watching the tropics. This has gotten very crowded, very busy across the Atlantic in the last 24 hours. We now have four different tropical waves that we are keeping a close eye on.
Three of them only have about a 20 percent chance of development. But it is this one in the center here that has a 60 percent chance of development over the next five days. The question is that westerly tract, does it continue, Boris and Amara, to take it into the Gulf Coast region, which at this point doesn't need any more rain than they've already had?
WALKER: Yes, they do not. Thanks for tracking that, Allison Chinchar. Appreciate it. And stay with us. Coming up next hour, we'll be joined live by the mayor of Jackson, Mississippi, for a look at the preparations under way and his message to the residents.
SANCHEZ: There are also hopeful signs we want to tell you about in the coronavirus pandemic. The FDA set to meet this week to approve the next wave of COVID booster shots. Just ahead, we're going to tell you what makes these different from previous vaccines and also the trends we're seeing when it comes to new infections.
Plus, we're also counting down to history. Artemis I set to lift off from Kennedy Space Center tomorrow on a mission to the moon. We're going to talk about everything related to the launch and some of the more interesting cargo on board when we come back.
WALKER: New this morning, a Biden administration official tells CNN that the FDA is expected to authorize Pfizer's updated COVID-19 vaccine booster for people age 12 and older within the next few days. Now, production of the updated shot which is designated to protect against the newest Omicron variant is already under way. And White House officials have said they expect doses to become available in early to mid-September, as states can order doses ahead of time.
SANCHEZ: The authorization comes as COVID hospitalizations continue to decline. Last week they dipped below 40,000 for the first time in more than a month, but they still remain more than twice as high as they were four months ago.
WALKER: All right. Here with me now to discuss this further is public health physician Dr. Chris Pernell. She is also the regent-at-large at the American College of Preventive Medicine. Dr. Pernell, good morning to you.
I just want to start hopefully with some good news. Because, you know, the CDC is predicting that COVID deaths are going to start declining over the coming weeks. How optimistic are you that things are headed in the right direction and where do you think it is all going to end up?
DR. CHRIS PERNELL, PUBLIC HEALTH PHYSICIAN: Good morning. I'm very, very, happy to be with you all this morning. Well, we have positive news coming out of the CDC. Yes, stats are starting to move in a better direction. We're seeing deaths below 500 a day, hospitalizations around 30,000 currently. And we're seeing our case load below 100,000.
While those are all positive signs, the most important thing for the public to be focused on is preparedness. And preparedness is knowing which prevention behaviors or prevention tools are in your prevention tool kit and how to use them.
WALKER: OK. So, speaking of prevention then we also just mentioned that Pfizer and Moderna submitted their applications for the FDA for the emergency use authorization for their updated booster shots targeting the Omicron subvariants. How important is it to get an updated booster? Right now I feel like, you know, I'm boosted. But I still feel vulnerable to this Omicron variant.
PERNELL: I think it is very important because what we learned throughout this pandemic is that the virus is going to try to stay ahead of us. How does the virus do that? By mutating and we get these variants that are typically more infectious, meaning that they spread more easily. We have BA.5 and BA.4 which are circulating across communities in the United States. And the fact that we'll now have a tool in our tool kit that is very specific against those variants is indeed good news.
WALKER: OK. Let's pivot to monkeypox now because, you know, that's obviously the other virus that many of us are concerned about, including parents. First off, you know, what should parents be doing? How concerned should we be?
PERNELL: Parents should be doing what everyone else is doing. I want to first emphasize that the risk of children contracting monkeypox is low. Although it is low, it is not impossible, so what do you do?
We know that monkeypox is spread by direct skin to skin contact with someone who is infected, meaning someone who has the monkeypox virus rash. So don't share bedding, don't share towels, don't share clothing, don't share utensils. In addition, we know that hand hygiene is one of the most basic bread and butter infection prevention tools we have. So wash your hands with soap and water, and/or alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
WALKER: And those are the statistics that you're looking at right now on your screen with the CDC data showing more than 17,000 cases nationwide of monkeypox with at least 17 confirmed and probable cases among children 15 and younger. So obviously, a lower risk it seems when it comes to children.
But racial disparity, is that something that the CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky highlighted during that White House briefing on Friday. I think she mentioned that Black and Hispanic men, they represent a disproportionate number of new monkeypox cases, yet they're the least likely to be vaccinated against the virus. Why are we seeing these kinds of disparities and do you think the Biden administration is doing enough to address that?
PERNELL: We continue to see these types of disparities because of systemic racism, because of health inequities. What we know is that those in historically excluded groups like Black and Latino populations have less access to care. When you have less access to care you're less able to prevent yourselves against outbreaks or any chronic health conditions that might be predominant in community.
You can see data that's out of Georgia and North Carolina, it shows that of those who are infected with monkeypox in those states, that's ranging anywhere from 70 to 82 percent, but yet only 22 percent of those who have been vaccinated have been Black men or men who have -- Black men who have sex with men. So we have to always keep equity at the front and center of our public health practices and our pandemic preparedness.
And is the administration doing enough? The administration has made gains, but the administration can do more. We must center and lead with equity and that means from the go, from the advance, how are we accessing those communities, where we know they will have disproportionate risks and what are we doing to eliminate that risk.
WALKER: Outreach extremely important in this as well. Dr. Chris Pernell, appreciate you joining us this morning. Thanks so much.
PERNELL: Thank you.
SANCHEZ: So we are just one day away from the launch of the Artemis I rocket. A preview of NASA's mission to the moon and potentially beyond is next.
SANCHEZ: Checking in now on this morning's other top stories. The families of several victims of the Uvalde School shooting are calling on Texas lawmakers to pass gun reform. Remember in May, 19 students and two teachers were killed at Robb Elementary School.
WALKER: Yesterday, some of their families joined a March For Our Lives rally in Austin. Rally organizers say they want Texas Governor Greg Abbott to call a special session to raise the minimum age to purchase an assault rifle-style weapon to 21. The group also included survivors from the 2018 Santa Fe high school shooting where 10 people were killed.
SANCHEZ: A major settlement has been reached in a case involving hundreds of nursing home patients who were evacuated to a Louisiana warehouse during Hurricane Ida. You're watching a video that a patient shot showing the crowded unsanitary conditions inside the warehouse. The families of some of the residents filed a class action lawsuit last year against several -- seven nursing home facilities. They claimed the patients endured horrific and inhumane conditions. Several patients died. The owner of the nursing home was later indicted on felony charges. The final settlement amount has not been determined but it could be as much as $15 million.
Looking at the Vatican now, Pope Francis has installed 20 new cardinals from around the world including the Amazon, Nigeria, Mongolia, and the United States. During his homily, the pope asked the new cardinals to remember poor families, migrants, and the unhoused. The Pope is now installed 83 out of the 132 cardinals who will eventually choose his successor.
WALKER: Five decades, it has been that long after the last Apollo mission. We are now 24 hours from what could be the next era of space exploration. SANCHEZ: NASA hopes to launch Artemis 1 on Monday, its Orion capsule. It won't actually touch down on the lunar surface, but NASA is hoping that future Artemis missions will put astronauts back on the moon.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BILL NELSON, NASA ADMINISTRATOR: We're going back to the moon in preparation to go to Mars. That's the difference. 50 years ago, we went to the moon for a day, a few hours, three days max. Now, we're going back to the moon to stay, to live, to learn to build.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WALKER: All right, joining us now is Janet Ivey, President of Explore Mars and CEO and founder of Janet's Planet Incorporated. What did -- what did I miss? What do you all laugh about?
SANCHEZ: Every time we have Janet on, she has these amazing backgrounds. I call her the CEO of snazzy backgrounds.
WALKER: Are we talking to you in space? I thought we were having this conversation through zoom and space. OK, well, now I know. So I have to -- I do want to ask you this because look, it's been 50 years. I mean, that is a generation since we sent someone to the moon, right? But we've done this before. We know the technology that it takes to get to the moon. So I mean, obviously feels like it's been a long time coming. Well, what's been taking so long?
JANET IVEY, PRESIDENT, EXPLORE MARS: Well, again, it's like remember, that was 50 years ago. And when you think that was on rotary telephones and slide rules, it was an amazing, amazing human feat. Now we have built this Orion spacecraft. It's going to go further than any human-rated vehicle ever and it's going to -- we're going to push it to its limits with Artemis one, meaning we're going to make sure that it is fully ready for those next humans. And so -- and also it's going to go 40,000 miles further than any human-rated spacecraft, making way and testing the system so that one-day humans can set foot on Mars.
SANCHEZ: And, Janet, what is it that they're specifically looking at with this first Artemis launch? Like, what aspects of this launch are they studying to ensure that they'll be ready for the moon in 2025?
IVEY: Well, it's like -- it's really fantastic. There are three mannequins on board, two have just torsos that are going to have all kinds of radiation sensors, another one is called Commander Moonikin Campos, named in a nod to Arturo Campos, who helped the Apollo 13 crew get back to Earth safely. And it's going to be equipped with all kinds of radiation sensors and dosimeters to test those levels of radiation that a human might endure on a very long-term mission and -- you know, on the moon.
They're going to be releasing a cube set so they're going to be looking for ice and mapping hydrogen on the south pole of the moon to -- again, to make sure we can use InStitchu resources, so it's going to test out. And NASA has said it (AUDIO GAP) everything to its fullest. It's like when the Orion command module returns and enters Earth's atmosphere, it's going to be coming in at 25,000 miles an hour, the friction alone is going to be like 5000 degrees if that spacecraft re-enters the Earth's atmosphere. And those astronauts inside that capsule will eventually like the experience 9Gs, and astronauts returning from the International Space Station over -- only over experienced 3G.
So they're going to test out all those systems. Those mannequins are on board. There's tons of other experiments there, but we're going to figure out how we can go out there. It's going to land there for 42 -- I mean, it's going to not land on the moon this time, but it's going to be out there for 42 days, testing all those systems. So for Artemis Two, we're ready to send a crewed mission to fly by the moon and by Artemis Three to land the first ever woman and person of color on the moon and get the blueprint -- footprints there.
WALKER: The -- there are so many cool aspects to that, you know, first woman, the first person of color, but also the fact that I mean rocket scientists can even achieve a feat like this is just mind-boggling to me. So when we talk about the goal, Janet, so 2025, not that far away, right to get someone on the moon. But there's also plans to get an Artemis base camp up there, like a -- like housing for the astronauts. I mean, that sounds pretty out there. Explain how -- what -- no pun intended, but what's the goal there? I mean, like, kind of walk us through what it's going to look like up on the moon.
IVEY: To establish that lunar moon base, what friends like my friend, Robert Howard Jr. at NASA has been aiming for, for a long time, is to test out those systems that would -- could eventually push humanity further into space, living, and working there, we will know the constraints and be able to calculate, like what that might look like for humans that might venture onto Mars.
And so, it will be everything from testing up systems. Even onboard this first Artemis One mission, there's Amazon's Alexa mixed with Cisco's WebEx testing out systems like voice activation and AI and all of those things. So a lunar base, living, working, staying on the moon will provide ultimate data for how humans can thrive in a sustained environment -- you know a sustained living environment on another celestial body. That will be a proving ground for how humans may get to Mars and live and survive and thrive there as well.
SANCHEZ: I just want to give our viewers a heads up. We're taking a live look at the launch site at Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida. Janet, you're not far from there. You're in Cocoa Beach, I believe, even though it appears that you're in outer space.
WALKER: In outer space.
IVEY: My mind is always has space for it. Now, I'm right here at Cocoa Beach beach. And it's like I'm so excited. I am gifted with the opportunity to be at Kennedy Space Center tomorrow and I will be watching with bated breath. There's -- I watch Launchpad, the historic place where Apollo and space shuttle missions have launched. And there will be Artemis One on Launch Pad 39B. You know it's taller than a football field. It's like 8.8 million pounds of thrust as it lifts off.
IVEY: And what's really exciting for me and for everybody is that the launch director is female, Charlie Blackwell-Thompson, and she will be giving the call for go -- for launch. 53 years ago at Apollo 11, there was only one female in that room in mission control, Poppy Northcutt, but there will be 31 WOMEN in mission control and so it's historic on so many levels.
And I think it's going to prompt an entire generation much like that, the Apollo program did. And in the words of Gene Cernan, I'd love to leave with this is that when he was leaving the moon, he really kind of urged us all to think about that, you know, God willing, we shall return and we will do so with peace and hope for mankind. And that's my hope for the Artemis mission as it launches tomorrow, that we do so with the idea of peace and hope for all mankind.
WALKER: Such meaningful words. Yes, that is everyone's goal, right? Thank you so much, Janet Ivey, for being with us. And yes, fingers crossed for a good weather window between 8:33 in the morning and as at 10:33, we'll be watching closely.
WALKER: Thank you so much.
SANCHEZ: Thanks so much, Janet.
WALKER: All right, NASA engineers are looking over Launch Pad 39B after lightning strikes nearby, a little too close for comfort I'd say.
NASA says rain and thunderstorms are over the area on Saturday and three lightning strikes hit the protection system towers. NASA says the lightning protection system towers are 600 feet tall and are there to protect the rockets by steering lightning currents away. OK.
SANCHEZ: Let's get a closer look at the forecast for the launch now, meteorologist Allison Chinchar is back with us. Alison, Florida, summertime, you're going to get rain, you're going to get lightning, what are you seeing?
ALLISON CHINCHAR, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Yes, I was going to say -- I mean any day, any given day in the summer over Florida, you run the risk of some thunderstorms and especially lightning. And unfortunately, Monday is no different than that. Yes, we do have a 60 percent chance of rain showers in the forecast around the Cape Canaveral area on Monday morning. The real key is going to be that exact two-hour window though.
Here you can see through the radar. You've got some of those popup showers and thunderstorms in that general vicinity. The concern is will there be a big enough window within that 8:33 to 10:33 a.m. timeframe tomorrow for them to launch safely. As of right now, it's about a 30 percent chance of a weather violation, meaning a 70 percent chance that this is still likely to take off.
We will get another forecast at some point later this morning. We'll have to see if there's any updates with that. But, Boris and Amara, there's a lot of concerns here, cloud cover, wind direction, wind speed, rain, a lot of factors here that they'll have to take into consideration.
WALKER: Hope it cooperates is all I can say. You just see that tiny window open up. Allison Chinchar, thanks. We'll be right back.
SANCHEZ: Some parts of the world are dealing with extreme drought right now.
WALKER: Yes, they are. And while it's made life difficult, it's also uncovering some ancient treasures. CNN's Michael Holmes has a story.
MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voiceover): One of Europe's largest rivers, the Rhine in Germany, dehydrated and shallow. Swaths of farmland in northern Mexico parched, dotted with dead livestock. Millions in the Horn of Africa facing starvation aid agencies warn. From Europe to the Americas to Africa to Northern Asia, extreme heat waves and little rain is impacting communities thousands of kilometers apart after a month or more of unrelenting droughts across much of the Northern Hemisphere. But amid the global hardship and scenes of devastation, blistering, temperatures, and water shortages are also revealing prehistoric secrets.
JEFF DAVIS, SUPERINTENDENT, DINOSAUR VALLEY STATE PARK: These are claw marks.
HOLMES: Emerging from the receding waters of the Paluxy River in Texas, dinosaur tracks thought to be 113 million years old. The prints had been long-preserved by sediment underwater, but amid ongoing drought in the southern U.S. state, they are now visible for what is likely the first time.
DAVIS: That's kind of a double-edged sword because, without the river, we wouldn't be able to see them, we wouldn't know they were there, but once they're exposed, that's when they start to degrade. Just like any other rocks, they're going to break down over time.
HOLMES: Another ancient site revealed in a diminished reservoir in Spain as the country battles its worst drought in decades. Dubbed the Spanish Stonehenge, this vertically arranged stone formation is thought to have been created by humans roughly 7000 years ago. And as drought drags on in China, another rare sight, receding waters of the Yangtze River uncovering ancient Buddhist statues thought to be hundreds of years old.
GU YUNFENG, CHONGQING RESIDENT: Speaking in a foreign language.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think the reason why our ancestors built this was because they wanted to pray for a peaceful world and a beautiful country. I hope that wish can be passed on forever. I hope that water levels can go up naturally and we may still have a peaceful and healthy world and country.
HOLMES: Ancient discoveries among the rare benefits of blistering temperatures and water scarcity, wreaking havoc across the globe. One small consolation for millions was suffering in the new extremes of an increasingly warming world.
Michael Holmes, CNN.
SANCHEZ: Thanks to Michael Holmes for that report. There is a ghost on the field, Tom Brady suiting up for the first time this season. Some highlights preseason football next.
WALKER: The Buffalo Bills have cut rookie Matt Araiza two days after he was accused of taking part in a gang rape of an underage girl. Let's bring in CNN's Coy Wire now. Coy, good morning.
COY WIRE, CNN SPORTS ANCHOR: Yes, good morning, Boris and Amara. The investigation into Matt Araiza has been going on for close to a year but it went public Thursday when the rookie punter was named in a civil lawsuit accusing Araiza of -- and two former teammates at San Diego State of raping a 17-year-old at a Halloween party last year. Yesterday, Buffalo General Manager Brandon Beane made the decision to cut Araiza from the team.
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BRANDON BEANE, BUFFALO BILLS GENERAL MANAGER: We tried to be thorough and thoughtful and not rush to judgment. And it's -- I would say it's not easy. You're trying to put facts around a legal situation, you know sometimes with limited information.
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WIRE: All right, now, we're going to change gears here in a moment but do know that no criminal charges have been filed yet. The San Diego County District Attorney's office says it is still reviewing the case. In a statement Thursday, Araiza said "the facts of the incident are not what is being portrayed in the lawsuit." All right, to some of the action on the field yesterday, all it took was one drive and everybody knew it was Tom Brady who was ready to go for his 23rd NFL season, first game action after his 11-day personal leave. The seventh-time Super Bowl champ goes six for eight leaving the Bucs to a field goal against the Colts. More than enough work for the GOAT with two weeks until the regular season over in Dallas. As for the time he took away in the middle of training camp earlier this month, here's what TB 12 had to say about it.
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TOM BRADY, TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS QUARTERBACK: It's all personal. You know, everyone's got different situations we are dealing with so we all have really unique challenges to our life. And you know we're -- I'm 45 years old man, was like going on so you know you just kind of try to figure out like the best you can.
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WIRE: All right, Atlanta Colts Pee Wee players got a chance to play in Mercedes Benz stadium yesterday but facing Atlanta Braves mascots was not warm and fuzzy like, they thought it would be. The Atlanta Braves mascot blooper is showing no mercy, looking like a bull running through Pamplona, handing out stiff bars and big O slices of humble pie for those little guys. I'm glad that one of my children was not out there. I might have to play.
WALKER: It's not nice.
SANCHEZ: Good for him though, from the mascot. Good for him.
SANCHEZ: Got it, right, yes. Coy Wire, thank you so much.
WIRE: You got it.
SANCHEZ: Thanks, coy.
So a state of emergency has been declared in Mississippi. There's heavy rain there and rising water that's threatening to flood the state's capitol. We're going to be joined at the top of the hour by the mayor of Jackson, Mississippi. Stay tuned for that. NEW DAY continues in a moment.