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CNN10 2020-09-22

CNN 10

Coronavirus Statistics In The U.S. And Abroad; U.S. Senate's Timing Controversy Concerning The Supreme Court. Aired 4-4:10a ET

Aired September 22, 2020 - 04:00:00 聽 ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: Hi, I'm Carl Azuz for CNN 10. You're down the middle explanation of world events. I wish I could start off this show by saying coronavirus was finally going away. I can't because it's not. In fact, from Europe to the United States appear to be on the rise overall.

European health officials say the continent is seeing its second wave of COVID-19 infections.

Austria, France, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom are among the nations that are having an apparent surge. The UK says the number of new coronavirus cases there is doubling every seven days. There are several theories about why. Some say it's because the summer vacation season is over. Workers are returning to city offices. Students are returning to school.

The World Health Organization says people are dropping their guard. Young people are being blamed for spreading it in gatherings and parties and the amount of testing has increased, also accounting for more cases being diagnosed. There's still a lot health officials don't know about this disease. On Friday the U.S. Centers for Disease Control appeared to suggest COVID-19 was more contagious than previously thought.

Its guidance temporarily said there was evidence that when an infected person coughs, sneezes, talks, sings or breathes, infectious droplets and airborne particles could stay in the air and travel distances beyond six feet. But on Monday, the organization said that was posted by mistake and changed back to previous guidance which said the disease spreads mainly between people in close contact. Yesterday, the U.S. was approaching a new coronavirus milestone with 200,000 deaths blamed on the disease.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That number 200,000 will stand alone for being catastrophic. But all of the other numbers we are looking at this morning shows that this crisis is not behind us, not by a long stretch, and certainly appearing to get worse. If you take a look at the average for new cases nationwide, what we're seeing over the last week is that the metrics are steadily ticking upwards.

Over the last seven days, we're averaging more than 41,000 new cases across the country every day. When you see how that looks on a map, well, it looks like this. The majority of states across the nation seeing an increase in cases. Some 28 states seeing an increase in new cases of more than 10 percent in just the last week.

Yes those numbers are alarming. You point out the fact that the former FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb is calling what it is, an unmistakable spike. The question now is whether we're seeing the kind of bump that we saw following Labor Day. If this is a similar bump to what we saw after July 4th and Memorial Day or if we are seeing a real resurgence going into the fall and winter months. Something that public health officials have been expressing deep concern about.


AZUZ: So is there a silver lining to this? Well in Europe at least, health officials say the death rate from coronavirus has been stable for months.

So it doesn't appear to be getting worse in that way. The World Health Organization recently said global cases are on a plateau and there are some areas, including several U.S. states where the number of cases is holding steady or decreasing.

But while some college campuses have said COVID-19 hasn't been a major problem, that cases have been relatively low. Others have cancelled events like spring break to try to keep students from traveling, catching COVID and returning to campus.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is where students here at the University of Wisconsin-Madison get taken when they test positive for COVID-19, to isolation housing. Nobody goes in. Nobody comes out. It's all part of the university's effort to try and get a handle on the outbreak here on campus where it took just five days to go from the first day of classes to students restricted to essential activities only.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Since move in started at Wisconsin in late August, more than 2,000 students have tested positive for COVID-19.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They sent me an email. Pack your bags and get out of there as soon as possible.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Freshman Keir Metter (ph) is one of them. Why do you think it's so difficult to contain COVID-19 outbreaks on college campuses?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You can say like don't do this and don't do that but it's very difficult to enforce all of that. (Inaudible) probably why they can't send everyone home. That's why, because we're just going to spread it all across the country if we do.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Metter (ph) says he's had mild to no symptoms so far and he's been isolation housing for days as he waits out his two-week period.

In total, more than 350 students are in isolation at the university with another 100-plus quarantining. The rest of the undergraduate campus has been restricted to essential activities only. A move students say they only learned about last minute. Rushing to grocery stores as cases continue to climb.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're sitting in the elevator with people that might have it. Of course, you have your mask on and you're like, well that does something but not 100 percent of, you know, everything.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Across his dorm and another, roughly 20 percent of the students have been infected according to the school. Residents in those dorms have been told they can leave the building for 30 minutes, three times a day to secure meals and get a breath of fresh air.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We're almost certainly going to see significant case numbers continue over this coming week. By identifying people who test positive and moving them into isolation.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The school says they're investigating more than 380 student violations and reviewing 12 students for emergency suspension. A step that's been taken at other schools. The University of Missouri expelling two students for disregarding COVID rules.


AZUZ: 10 Second Trivia. What position does Mitch McConnell hold in the U.S. Senate? Speaker, Senate Majority Leader, Senate Minority Leader or President of the Senate. Since 2015, Mitch McConnell has served as the Senate Majority Leader.

Later this week, U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to nominate a new Associate justice to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court. It's up to the Senate to confirm or reject the president's nominee and here's more on why its timing is politically controversial. In 2016, Associate Justice Antonin Scalia died.

Then President Barak Obama nominated a replacement justice in March, but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell refused to hold a hearing on the nominee. He said because it was an election year, the Senate should wait until the next president took office and nominate Scalia's replacement.

And that's what happened in 2017 with President Trump. Now in this election year, another Associate justice has died but Senate Majority Leader McConnell says the president's nominee will get a Senate vote. So what's changed? This year, President Trump is a first term Republican who could be re-elected and the Senate is controlled by his Republican party.

In 2016, President Obama was a second term Democrat who could not be re- elected and the Senate was controlled by Republicans the opposite party. Senator McConnell said no Senate had confirmed an election year nominee from an opposite party president since the 1880s' but he also said in 2016 that the American people should have a voice through the election on who should get to pick the next Supreme Court justice.

Democrats want McConnell to stick to his rule from 2016 to not hold a vote in an election year. And Democrats say that because McConnell denied former President Obama a Supreme Court appointment in 2016, they'll do all they can to block President Trump from one in 2020. Republicans do control the Senate but it's not clear if all of them are on board with a vote this fall. And we have no idea how any of this is going to play out. For the time being, there are eight members of the U.S. Supreme Court.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The Supreme Court is designed to operate with nine justices. With eight justices, there are possibilities for tie votes which can create a significant amount of confusion in the law. If the court is operating with eight justices and there are tie votes as there sometimes have been. What that means, is that the lower court decision is affirmed but it doesn't count as a precedent for the whole country.

What that means is, significant legal issues can remain unresolved when the court doesn't have a full complement of nine justices. On rare occasions, the Supreme Court does look at a case again but certainly when the issue is an equally divided court, it often happens that the same issue come to the justices again in a different lawsuit.


AZUZ: Today's 10 out of 10 segment is hair-raising. Told you. Joseph Grisamore (ph) has had long hair all his life according to Guinness World Records. Now he has the title for world's tallest Mohawk. But Carl, you're asking. How tall is it?

Forty-two and a half inches, that's three and a half feet and add that to his six-foot, one-inch frame, that's high. A good hairdresser and a strong hairspray helped. Low ceilings and cars do not. Of course, he could always "mowalk" or take a "mohike" or star in the "Last of the Mohawkins". And that's not a "bald" face lie.

Everywhere he goes, he finds he has fans of the "fan" and his record will stand, like his Mohawk even if it's "hair" today, gone tomorrow.

"Hairible". Andrew Jackson High School, we got your comment on our YouTube channel. Thank you for watching from Kershaw, South Carolina. I'm Carl Azuz for CNN.