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The Situation Room
New Video Of Suspect's Arrest As CNN Obtains Photos Of Gun Arsenal; Ukraine Claims Major New Gains Amid Significant Russian Losses; Ten Dead After Racist Massacre At Grocery Store In Buffalo; U.S. Baby Formula Maker Reaches Deal With Feds To Reopen Plant; Pennsylvania Senate Candidate Fetterman Suffers Stroke Before Primary. Aired 6-7p ET
Aired May 16, 2022 - 18:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JAKE TAPPER, CNN ANCHOR (voice over): A new map shows the parts of the U.S. most at risk for property damage from wildfires. As you see here, the darker the area, the greater your risk, according to a Washington Post analysis of the data. One in six Americans lives in an area with significant wildfire risk.
Our coverage continues now with one Mr. Wolf Blitzer in THE SITUATION ROOM. I will see you tomorrow.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Happening now, new cell phone video shows the Buffalo shooting suspect being apprehended by police. CNN just obtained photos of the two rifles he allegedly took to the scene of the racist massacre. Officials are now revealing chilling new details of his planning, saying he intended to continue this rampage.
Also tonight, Ukrainian forces are claiming major gains on the battlefield amid significant Russian losses. This as the Putin regime is lashing out over Sweden joining Finland in seeking NATO membership. The Kremlin is now threatening to retaliate.
And there's a significant new development impacting the nationwide shortage of infant formula. A deal has just been reached to reopen a plant that was shut down because of a recall. How soon will desperately needed nourishment for America's babies be back on store shelves?
We want to welcome our viewers here in the United States and around the world. I'm Wolf Blitzer. You're in THE SITUATION ROOM.
We begin with new evidence at the Buffalo shooting suspect was plotting a racially motivated slaughter for months, visiting the city back in March and potentially looking to attack a second store.
CNN's Brian Todd is on the scene for us following all the new developments tonight.
SHERIFF JOHN GARCIA, ERIE COUNTY, NEW YORK: This was a straight-up hate crime, pure evil.
BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Tonight, police revealing details about the meticulous planning that went into the massacre of ten people at a Buffalo store and how it could have been worse.
COMMISSIONER JOSEPH GRAMAGLIA, BUFFALO POLICE: He had plans had he gotten out of here to continue his rampage and continue shooting people. He'd even spoken about possibly going to another store.
TODD: 18-year-old Payton Gendron is accused of murdering several people in the parking lot. He exchanged gunfire with a security guard and shot more people in the store before surrendering to police.
GRAMAGLIA: He was very heavily armed. He had tactical gear. He had a tactical helmet on. He had a camera that he was livestreaming what he was doing.
TODD: CNN obtained a 180-page statement attributed to the suspect, which was posted online just before the attack. The document's author says he was inspired after seeing a clip of another racially motivated attack in New Zealand in 2019, where a gunman livestreamed his murder of 51 people at two mosques. The document details how the shooter has been radicalized by online message boards, describing the great replacement theory, which suggests the false belief that the white race is dying out.
LETITIA JAMES, NEW YORK ATTORNEY GENERAL: He had the N word which unfortunately was carved into one of his weapons. Clearly, he was bent on hate.
TODD: CNN has obtained a photo of two other rifles the gunman brought to the scene that have writing on them including the phrase, white lives matter. The shooter allegedly wrote he had chosen the Buffalo store based on the racial make-up of its ZIP Code and he had been serious about carrying out the attack since January.
GRAMAGLIA: The individual was here a few months ago back in early March.
TODD: He'd been buying ammo, surplus military gear and shooting irregularly and had mapped out the store intending to shoot all black people. The main gun, a Bush Master XM15 was bought from this gun store before he illegally modified it. But according to The New York Times, he had no problems purchasing the weapon even after an incident at the Susquehanna Valley High School last June, when he was a student there, on the honor roll, school documents show.
GARCIA: The gun dealer was able to sell this weapon citizen individual, because there were no red flags that came up.
TODD: A spokesperson for the school district tells CNN the suspect was interviewed by police after he made an ominous reference to murder suicide in a school project, although there was no specific threat.
GARCIA: He stayed in a facility. I'm not sure if it was hospital or a mental health facility for a day and a half. TODD: The gunman's neighbor we spoke to didn't want to give their names. They are frustrated.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Something got missed. If he was flagged in high school, why didn't he get the mental health care he needed then. And the system failed him that caused this tragedy to occur.
TODD: They say the shooter was quiet and seemed like a normal teenager.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And then when they found out he was from Conklin, I said, they sure as hell hope he's not from Conklin. So -- and then it turns out he was, and then turns out he lives on my street. So, we were all totally shocked about this whole thing.
TODD: The suspect is currently in custody and on suicide watch.
GARCIA: He's in a segregated unit aside from the rest of the general population, and that's for his safety.
TODD (on camera): The suspect has pleaded not guilty to first degree murder. Law enforcement officials say prosecutors are working to bring possible federal charges against him in addition to the state charges. Officials also say that the suspect's attorney has withdrawn a request for a mental health forensic examination to be performed on him. Wolf?
BLITZER: Brian Todd reporting for us. Brian, thank you very much.
Let's discuss what's going on with Buffalo's Mayor Byron Brown. Mayor Brown, thank you so much for joining us.
As you know, Buffalo is my hometown. I grew up in that city. I love that city very much. So, this racist hateful shooting is especially painful for those of us who are from Buffalo. How is your community, first of all, doing right now? Should Buffalonians of color feel safe tonight?
MAYOR BYRON BROWN, BUFFALO, NEW YORK: People are in a lot of pain. People are hurting in the city of Buffalo. People are grieving in Buffalo. And we are a strong community, Wolf, as you know. We are a loving community, known nationally and internationally as the city of good neighbors. We will get through this horror. We will not let a lone, racist gunman define the city of Buffalo.
People in this community should feel safe. We have a very strong law enforcement partnership and law enforcement at every level has been working around the clock seamlessly since this incident on Saturday afternoon.
So, at the federal level, at the state level, the Buffalo police, the Erie County Sheriff's Office, all working together in unison, to look at every detail of this crime in the city of Buffalo. We have beefed up the work of our police department to make sure that neighborhoods throughout our city are safe.
BLITZER: I hope so. Just a little while ago, I know you announced that arrests have been made in connection to various social media posts and possible additional threats out there. What more can you tell us about that, Mayor?
BROWN: There have been some concerning social media posts that are threatening in nature. Federal, state and local law enforcement made it clear that those social media posts will be taken very seriously. Any kind of attempted copycat activity will be taken very seriously. And, already, yesterday, one person was arrested for posts and calls that were made to businesses that were threatening in nature. So, we're going to send a very clear message that games will not be tolerated, copycat activity will not be tolerated and social media will be very carefully monitored.
BLITZER: Yes, that's why I worry about these copycats out there. I know you do as well.
As you also know, Mayor, the far right public figures who have been promoting this extremist, this racist, this so-called white replacement theory, which the alleged killer repeatedly referenced in that document that he posted, do you believe they are complicit, these public figures, are complicit in these murders?
BROWN: These public figures are absolutely complicit. They trade in hate speech. They propagate hate speech. They try to proliferate hate speech and indoctrinate people in the community in these misguided theories, this misinformation. Yes, they are partially to blame for the radicalization of people in this country and indoctrinating them into attitudes and feelings of hatred towards others.
BLITZER: I'm really pleased that President Biden will be visiting my hometown of Buffalo tomorrow. You'll meet with him, of course. So, what will be your message to the president of the United States?
BROWN: I will talk to the president about the availability of guns. Guns are far too easy to obtain in the United States of America. We've seen far too many mass shootings in this country. This doesn't happen in other countries across the world. We have to do more to control, sensibly control guns in this country.
I'll be talking to the president about hate speech, hate speech by public figures, hate speech on social media and what can be done to address that.
Also, mental health, we need to make sure that there are more resources for mental health throughout the country.
And I will also be talking, finally, about economic development, more resources in urban communities for business development and job creation for the residents living in intercity communities, like Buffalo, all across the country. BLITZER: Mayor Brown, please pass along my love to all my fellow Buffalonians. Thank you so much for joining us. Good luck to you. Good luck to everyone in Buffalo.
BROWN: Thank you very much, Wolf.
BLITZER: I want to dig deeper into the motive for this massacre with the former FBI deputy director, Andrew McCabe, he's a CNN Senior Law Enforcement Analyst, and Derrick Johnson, he's the President and CEO of the NAACP.
Andrew, first to you, as you can see in the photo, and we'll put it up there, there it is, the suspect covered weapons in his arsenal in writing, including the phrase white lives matter, and other notations reflecting his racist beliefs. What does that tell you?
ANDREW MCCABE, CNN SENIOR LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: Well, Wolf, it tells us that the motive behind this attack was absolutely clear. This is a person who was radicalized online by his own admission and he is motivated by a deep and abiding hatred of black people. And it's just the latest in a series of racially motivated mass shootings that we have to endure in this country. There's no question that this individual was motivated by the Christ Church shooter, also a racist attack in New Zealand in 2019. And that event served as the motivating driver, the inspirational driver for the El Paso anti-immigrant shooter in 2020.
So, you can see, Wolf, how these things are all connected by a shared grievance and a shared hatred for black people, for immigrants, in some cases, for Jewish people, anti-Semitism. It is a very strong theme that runs through these incredible violent events of our country.
BLITZER: Yes. It's what they call that great replacement theory. They don't want white people to be replaced by others, whether they're blacks, Asians, Hispanics or Jews. We remember that in Charlottesville. Some of those racist were screaming, Jews will not replaced us.
You know, Derrick, the mayor of Buffalo just told me that public officials pushing this white replacement theory are complicit in these murders. Do you agree with it?
DERRICK JOHNSON, PRESIDENT AND CEO, NAACP: Well, absolutely, not only public officials, social media platforms that refuse to remove these groups off of their platforms. Fox News had continuously promote divisive language that turns to hate speech, which actually turns to actions whether what took place in the Bay Area, with the Bugaloo boys killing up federal official, January 6, El Paso, that was mentioned, the Kroger in Louisville, Kentucky, the synagogue in Pittsburgh, what took place in Wisconsin, all of these things are a matter of national security now, in my opinion. This is a domestic terrorism and it should be treated as such.
African-Americans in our experience, we know what happens when you allow domestic terrorists to go unaccountable for their actions. You are guaranteed more actions of domestic terror. That's in our experience. We've seen it all through the '30s, through '40s, '50s and '60s. And we are witnessing that now, Wolf. What all of these incidents that are similar, is coming from the same set of rhetoric. And we must stop repeating the rhetoric because it's nothing more than red meat for a conservative base trying to score political points.
BLITZER: Derrick Johnson, Andrew McCabe, gentlemen, thank you much for joining us. I wish we were meeting on a different subject. It's so painful to see what's going on right now.
Just ahead, Ukraine claims major new gains amid significant Russian losses, as much as one-third of Moscow's combat forces in the country, according to British military officials. We're going there live when we come back.
BLITZER: Tonight, Ukraine says it's making major new gains against the invading Russian forces and that Vladimir Putin's troops are suffering significant losses. And Ukrainian forces say they've reached the Russian border near Kharkiv.
CNN Senior International Correspondent Sam Kiley is on the ground for us in Eastern Ukraine, where he rode along with secret police as they captured a man spying for Russia. Here is his exclusive report.
SAM KILEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: This is the former headquarters of the SBU. That's the secret police, effectively, of Ukraine. Now, it was hit right at the beginning of the war with an airstrike.
Clearly, from the Russian perspective this is an immediate necessity to knock out the SBU's capacity here in Kramatorsk, because it is from this location that the counterintelligence operation would have been run.
We've been working on him for about four days. We have a complete picture of his actions, says Serhiy.
This is Ukraine's most secretive force, the equivalent of the FBI and then some.
Serhiy says we have identified a person who, according to our intelligence, is committing a crime. Simply put, this is a person who transmits to the Russian side, the Russian military, information of about the locations of our units, their snatch team with orders to grab an alleged Russian spy.
The SBU says that spies feed a stream of information on troop movements and details of targets to Russia's aircraft and artillery. In this region, the SBU says it catches one or two agents run by Russia every day.
And today's suspect is being watched. He's ours. There he goes, having a smoke. All units, green pants, black sweatshirt, 1,000.
Special Forces sweep in, resistance, pointless.
Two Ukrainians are asked to witness the interrogation. With our camera present, protocols are followed to the letter. He's told why he's arrested for high treason during martial law and confesses on the spot to spying. He says that he was allegedly recruited online, gets orders via a messaging app from someone called Nikolai.
The suspect says that he got about $10 for his alleged spying, which included locations of Ukrainian military units in the town. According to an alleged exchange between him and his handler, the suspect was arrested mid-mission.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (SPEAKING FOREIGN LANGUAGE).
KILEY (voice over): There's no death penalty for traitors here but as he's driven through these gates, he'll know that if tried and convicted, he could spend a lifetime behind bars.
Serhiy's hometown is under constant Russian bombardment. So, for him, this is no small victory. Russia is hitting us with missiles, rockets and air raids. These missiles hit the coordinates which are transmitted by these criminals. People die in these attacks, soldiers and civilians. But he adds, the more atrocities the Russians commitment the harder it's getting for the Kremlin for recruitment of spies.
KILEY (on camera): Now, Wolf, arguably, those atrocities, aside from what we've seen on the outskirts of Kyiv, have been most graphically illustrated by appalling bombardment of Mariupol which has been continuing at pace.
But glimmers of good news for the small number of -- relatively small number of troops still left fighting and holding out against the Russian onslaught with Ukrainian government officials saying that about just around 260 wounded and other soldiers have been able to be evacuated from the Azovstal plant in Mariupol, that holdout area.
It's a very complex story, but we understand that some of them, according to Ukrainian officials, may have been able to cross into Ukrainian lines as part of a prisoner exchange arranged with the Russians. Wolf?
BLITZER: Sam Kiley on the scene for us, excellent report. Thank you very, very much.
Coming up, grief-stricken relatives recall the loved ones taken from them in the hate-fueled mass shootings in Buffalo. We'll also get the latest on the investigation from the county sheriff. He's standing by to join us live. We'll be right back.
BLITZER: Right now, investigators are revealing new details of the planning behind the racist massacre that left ten wonderful people dead inside a Buffalo grocery store. And they say the shooter intended to continue his rampage, possibly, at another large store. Tonight, we're also learning more about the ten victims.
Here is CNN's National Correspondent Brynn Gingras.
BRYNN GINGRAS, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Families overcome with emotion.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're not just hurting. We're angry. We're mad. This shouldn't have happened.
GINGRAS: Trying to process the unexplainable killing of their loved ones gunned down at a Buffalo grocery store this weekend.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She was an 86-year-old powerhouse.
GINGRAS: Ruth Whitfield, the oldest of the victims, is the mother of Buffalo's fire commissioner killed shortly after visiting her husband of 68 years in a nursing home.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's nothing to take away the pain, take away the hole in our hearts because part of us is gone, senselessly taken from us by hate.
GINGRAS: Former Police Lieutenant Aaron Salter worked security at the Tops store in his retirement. His last heroic act, exchanging gunfire with the shooter and likely saving lives.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He was beloved by the community.
GINGRAS: A community and clergy now missing, Hayward Patterson.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's too much for my heart.
GINGRAS: He was killed in the parking lot, never making it into the store where his friends say he would often bring parishioners who needed to buy food.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Deacon Patterson was the one that transported him back and forth to their homes so that they can continue to survive.
GINGRAS: Pearl Young, also a woman of faith, attended a prayer breakfast hours before the shooting. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Over 25 years, she was running a food pantry, giving and helping and being faithful to her church. She was a saint.
GINGRAS: Katherine Massey, who, at 72 years old, was known as someone who stood up for equality.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She was just a go-getter.
GINGRAS: Friends say she worked to make a difference through her actions and her words. As a writer, she penned a letter to the editor about gun violence just year.
Margus Morrison while buying snacks for his weekly movie night. Andre Mackniel was picking up cupcakes for his grandson's birthday. Celestine Cheney, a breast cancer survivor, who planned to belatedly celebrate Mother's Day with family this weekend. Roberta Drury, the youngest victim who died, dedicated her time helping her brother fight leukemia. And Geraldine Talley was grocery shopping for a party with her fiance who survived.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Today, I get a chance to thank (INAUDIBLE). This is just devastating, all, him, lost.
GINGRAS: Three others recovering from the attack. Ten lives tragically lost in just minutes by a person authorities say was fueled by hate.
Brynn Gingras, CNN, New York.
BLITZER: My heart goes out to all of the families. My deepest, deepest condolences to the families and to those who were murdered, may they rest in peace and may their memories be a blessing.
Let's discuss the late breaking developments. The Erie County sheriff, John Garcia, is joining us right now. Sheriff Garcia, what you can tell us, first of all, about these copycat threats coming since the massacre? Do the people of Buffalo need to worry about another attack?
SHERIFF JOHN GARCIA, ERIE COUNTY, NEW YORK: Well, Wolf, I think what we're getting now, we're getting people that are these keyboard warriors that are sending out messages on social media. My message to them is we have a lot of empty beds at the Erie County Holding Center, where they could be spending the next week. We had a gentleman who made some threats of causing carnage at a local pizzeria. He's under arrest. And we also had a gentleman mentally ill that has been taken to the Erie County Medical Center.
BLITZER: Have investigators, Sheriff, been able to speak with the suspect's family yet?
GARCIA: The suspect's family have spoken to authorities. They're in Conklin, New York, in Broom County. And they are distraught. They are sickened by what happened. I just wonder how is it that they didn't know what -- you know, their son leaves in the middle of the day and comes up to Buffalo 3.5 hours away. And he had a history of some mental illness. And I just wonder how is it that they didn't call the authorities to let us know that, you know, he had left with the weapons and left for the day.
BLITZER: So, is there any evidence so far, Sheriff, that other people actually helped this horrible suspect carry out this attack?
GARCIA: It appears that he acted alone, Wolf. But he did have two other rifles. He had a shotgun and a .30-06 in the vehicle. So, if he wouldn't have been stopped first by the courageous act of retired Officer Aaron Salter that engaged and confronted this individual, and if it wasn't for the plate and his bulletproof vest, Aaron Salter would have been able to take him down.
And then the Buffalo police officers that responded within a minute and confronted him, and he gave up. And I'm very thankful that he didn't engage with an assault rifle upon two police officers that, you know, responded with 9 millimeters. So -- but he planned on continuing this carnage.
BLITZER: So, what can you tell us about other attacks the suspect was allegedly planning to carry out if he had been able to continue this rampage?
GARCIA: Well, you know, we don't want to put that out there yet, because as the district attorney has said this is an ongoing investigation. But I can tell you this. He was not going to be finished with killing as many blacks as possible at the Tops Friendly markets across the street from me. He was going to continue down Jefferson Avenue and he had some other target locations, as a, say, soft target locations, meaning commercial areas with people that wouldn't be armed.
BLITZER: The Erie county sheriff, John Garcia, Sheriff Garcia, thanks so much for joining us.
Thanks for all your important work. And, once again, my heart goes out to my fellow Buffalonians, a horrible, horrible situation indeed. Thank you and good luck.
GARCIA: Thank you, Wolf, very much. And you know this is not the Buffalo that we know.
BLITZER: No, it's not.
GARCIA: It's a city of good neighbors.
BLITZER: Buffalo is a welcoming city that loves to bring people in. My family, your family, they were welcomed. They came to Buffalo in Erie County and had a wonderful, wonderful life. And we're grateful to all of the people of Buffalo. Thank you so much, Sheriff, for joining us.
GARCIA: God bless. Thank you. BLITZER: God bless you.
Just ahead, we're going to get the latest on the first war crimes trial of a Russian soldier in Ukraine. We'll talk one-on-one with the country's top prosecutor, when we come back.
BLITZER: The first war crimes trial of a Russian soldier is now under way in Ukraine. And as new atrocities are revealed almost daily, there could be thousands more to come.
And joining us now, the prosecutor general of Ukraine, Iryna Venediktova. Iryna, thank you so much for joining us.
As you well know, and you know this a lot more intensely than I do, one suspect, one Russian suspect is already now on trial in Ukraine. So far, you've been able to identify, we're told, about 40 suspects out of the 11,000 potential war crimes you're investigating. How will you be able to track down every suspect and ensure they also face justice?
IRYNA VENEDIKTOVA, PROSECUTOR GENERAL OF UKRAINE: Dear Wolf, thank you very much that you're having me. I understand that it's very important for us, for Ukrainian, to speak from your platform about what is going on.
Yes. Actually, we have more than 11,200 cases. Tomorrow, we'll extract 100 or 200 cases again. And we understand that it's not so easy, not so simple to do investigations in Ukraine when we're still under shelling, bombing and so on, but for us, very important, not only to stop this war but to punish all people who are responsible.
And while the crime of aggression in Ukraine about all war crimes which they have done here, you mentioned first trial for Russian soldier, he is sergeant, who killed a civilian, 62-year-old man who just walked with his bicycle and spoke by phone. He killed him near his house, only several meters before his house.
And, actually, tomorrow, we'll start preliminary hearings with other two Russian soldiers who are physically here in Ukraine. They have done artillery shelling in Kharkiv for civilian infrastructure, for civilian houses, and we started to prosecute them too.
BLITZER: As you know, Iryna, President Zelenskyy says Ukraine is uncovering atrocities just like the brutal ones we saw in Bucha, for example, wherever Russian soldiers leave an area. As Ukrainian forces push Russians out of the major northern city of Kharkiv, for example, what new evidence of war crimes are you seeing?
VENEDIKTOVA: You know, we have so huge, massive evidences now that, for us, very important to collect them right and to set them right. Now, we see again and again, new evidences of using prohibited weapons here in the territory of Ukraine. We see new victims, for example, of rape and sexual crimes.
And we understand that, unfortunately, we will see it again and again, because more than 4,000 civilians who died during this period of war, but these figures are not correct. For today, for this morning, we have 229 dead children. But these figures are not correct because, again, Mariupol and Donetsk region, we don't know specific figures of these kids.
That's why we will see more and more interceptions. We will see more and more pieces of projectiles inside the borders of our people, with more and more dead people, dead civilians and witnesses of these crimes, unfortunately.
We will have a long process in this future. But, for us, it's very important that we started these proceedings now and we are in the court with specific war criminals and we are ready to prosecute them absolutely open.
We are open to all journalists in the whole world. We try to do our job absolutely professional and objective. Today, we have the team of prosecutors for International Criminal Courts on the grounds of Ukraine. We literally have a team who are part of the joint investigation team. We have French experts here on the ground in the Kyiv region.
BLITZER: The Ukrainian prosecutor general, Iryna Venediktova, thank you so much for joining us.
VENEDIKTOVA: Thank you. Have a good evening. Thank you very much.
BLITZER: Coming up, key new developments right now in the nationwide shortage of baby formula shortage here in the United States and why it could ease slightly in the coming weeks.
BLITZER: Major new developments in the shortage of infant formula here in the U.S., fueled in part by a recall by one of the country's largest manufacturers.
CNN's senior medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen is working the story for us.
Elizabeth, Abbott just says it has now reached a deal with the FDA on steps to resume production at its shuttered plant. How soon could the plant start production again? And how quickly could this help alleviate this huge crisis?
ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Wolf, this is clearly a step in the right direction, however, it is still going to be weeks, possibly many, plane weeks until we see products come out of this plant.
So, this is a consent decree between the FDA and Abbott Nutrition. This is the way Abbott terms it. It creates a pathway to reopen the facility. It doesn't reopen the facility, it just create as pathway for doing it.
So after FDA approval which they still don't have, they could restart the site, could, within two weeks. And then, it takes six to eight weeks beyond that before the product is available in stores.
So, you know, there's -- the FDA is still trying to get formula from other companies to sort of ramp up production, import formula, all those steps are going to help, but I don't think we're going to be seeing any immediate change to this shortage anytime very soon -- Wolf.
BLITZER: There's also a major announcement, Elizabeth, from the American Academy of Pediatrics. What can you tell us about that?
COHEN: Yeah. So, Wolf, I don't know if you remember from when you were little, but American Academy of Pediatrics always said do not give cows milk to a child until their first birthday, very strong on that. But, you know what, now, because of the shortage and I want to be clear, there's no medical or health change here, but because of the shortage, they're making a change to that recommendation.
Now they're saying whole cow's milk, quote, may be an option for many babies older than 6 months. If your baby was using regular, is using regular formula, not a specialty formula, they say after six months it could be an option for them to go to whole cow's milk. The AAP, the American Academy of Pediatrics very clear this is not ideal and baby should only be doing this a brief period of time. They don't define what that means. The American Academy of Pediatrics also saying that toddler formula is safe for a few days for children who are close to their first birthday.
This is a very dramatic departure for the American Academy of Pediatrics -- Wolf.
BLITZER: Certainly is. Elizabeth Cohen with all the late breaking developments, thank you very much.
There are also some dramatic developments on this, the eve of the Pennsylvania primaries including a top Democratic Senate candidate recovering now from a stroke.
Our congressional correspondent Jessica Dean is on the scene for us tonight.
Jessica, give us all the latest.
JESSICA DEAN, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Wolf, we're standing outside the hospital where lieutenant governor and Democratic Senate candidate John Fetterman is recovering after that stroke and I spoke in her first national interview since the stroke, I spoke with his wife Gisele Fetterman earlier today and she walked us through what she saw on Friday when the lieutenant governor had the stroke. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GISELE BARRETO FETTERMAN, FETTERMAN'S WIFE: We were on our way to an event and I noticed a second of change in him. And it's scary that it's that quickly that you could have missed it, right? If I wasn't paying attention, but I noticed a small sign. His mouth just moved slightly and my gut, I knew something was up and we were immediately, in town, luckily very close to Lancaster to the hospital and came straight here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DEAN: Just an amazing story, something so small. She noticed but ultimately could have saved his life. He is doing great, she says, and is expected to make a full recovery.
But, Wolf, he will not be out of the hospital by tomorrow. Primary day here in Pennsylvania. Again, he is the frontrunner in that Democratic primary. He was supposed to be in Pittsburgh tomorrow night. Instead, Giselle will be there making remarks.
She said we might see him virtually but he will be still here at the hospital recovering.
Turning now to the Republican side of this primary, we are seeing a surging Kathy Barnette. She is really coming out of nowhere in these few last days and weeks to really compete heavily with Dr. Mehmet Oz, of course, the celebrity doctor who has been endorsed by former President Trump and David McCormick, the former hedge fund CEO, who've really been duking it out in millions of dollars of ads over the Pennsylvania airwaves. And now, we've seen Barnette really surging.
We do know that Oz is having a teletown hall and rally with former President Trump tonight. But again, we will see how this plays out on primary night here in Pennsylvania, Wolf, tomorrow.
BLITZER: CNN's Jessica Dean on the scene for us. Jessica, thank you very much.
And stay with CNN tomorrow night for our CNN special live coverage of the midterm primaries. It all starts right after THE SITUATION ROOM, 7:00 p.m. Eastern.
Up next, even as the country reels from the racist Buffalo massacre, there were more shooting and see more deaths all across the United States this past weekend. We have new details when we come back.
BLITZER: The hate-fueled mass shooting in Buffalo was the deadliest, but not the only shocking incident of gun violence over the weekend here in the United States. We're getting new information now about a new shooting at a time when the church gathering yesterday in southern California that left one person dead and five injured.
Investigators now say the suspect in custody planted incendiary devices around the church and chained some doors closed. They say he's a Chinese native who was a upset about China-Taiwan relations.
Since Friday night, at least eight people killed or injured in mass shootings across the U.S., including at least five dead in Chicago and two dead in Houston, as well as dozens injured in those cities as well as Milwaukee and Winston, Salem, North Carolina.
And to our viewers, thanks very much for watching. I'm Wolf Blitzer in THE SITUATION ROOM.
"ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" starts right now.