tv ABC World News Tonight With David Muir ABC February 8, 2021 5:30pm-6:00pm PST
tonight, several developing stories as we come on the air. authorities warning americans to keep their guard up amid concern over a surge of potential infections after super bowl parties and get-togethers, and tonight also, the concern over the variants of the virus here in the u.s. one study now suggesting cases of the uk variant could be doubling every ten days here in the u.s. possibly becoming the dominant strain here by march. and what dr. fauci is saying tonight about that second dose of the vaccine. and news tonight on the newest potential weapon, that single shot from johnson & johnson. we have it all tonight. meantime, the hunt for mutations in the uk, after they were hit with the uk variant and others. what they're seeing there with the u.s. bracing for that uk variant to become the dominant strain here. our team inside the lab where they're hunting down the variants tonight. former president trump and
his second senate impeachment trial set to begin tomorrow. after telling his supporters to, quote, fight like hell that day, his lawyers now say he only used the word "fight" a handful of times and didn't mean it literally. calling this trial political theater. democrats tonight calling the former president's defense implausible. what to watch for tomorrow in this trial and we're live on the hill tonight. president biden and his $1.9 trillion covid relief bill. tonight, there is news house democrats want to add a child tax credit of up to $3,600 per child. where does the president stand on this tonight? and the white house now reacting to the congressional budget office analysis. what it says about raising the federal minimum wage to $15. what would it do to jobs, what would it do for poverty in this country? another breaking headline as we come on. the fbi and the secret service now investigating tonight the hack. who broke into a city's water plant computer system?
were they trying to poison the water supply? what they changed in the water, and why authorities are so concerned tonight. the deadly avalanches. four skiers killed in one avalanche in utah. and tonight, the images coming in of yet another avalanche. and the grandfather charged after authorities say he dropped his 18-month-old granddaughter from that 11th story window on a cruise ship. the family defending him all along and tonight, that grandfather and the sentence. good evening and it's great to have you with us as we start another week together. the fbi and secret service now investigating that hack into a city's water supply. the computer system. were hackers trying to poison the water? also, that historic second impeachment trial beginning tomorrow and what we've learned tonight. but we're going to begin this evening with authorities urging americans not to let their guard down with the coronavirus.
cases down from their january peak, but of course, that concern that the uk variant could soon become the dominant variant in this country. and then, of course, the images from over the weekend. fans at a bar in tampa erupting moments after the buccaneers' first touchdown. authorities were concerned over super bowl parties going in. and after the bucs' victory, crowds celebrating in the streets. tonight, that new study showing cases of that highly contagious uk variant could actually be doubling every ten days in this country. that spread in a race for the vaccine. 31.6 million people have been vaccinated. just 10% of the population. dr. anthony fauci and what he's saying tonight about the second dose of the vaccine. and the laser focus on getting those vaccines out. this week, a million doses will go out to pharmacies across the country. johnson & johnson's single shot vaccine could become the third vaccine here in the u.s., so, where does the timing stand on that tonight? we will carefully guide you through it all and we begin here with abc's eva pilgrim leading us off. >> reporter: tonight, fears of a
new wave of infections fueled by a weekend of super bowl celebrations. after scenes of parties in the streets and bars of tampa, the cdc director today urging americans to double down. >> i'm asking everyone to please keep your guard up. the continued proliferation of variants remains of great concern and is a threat that could reverse the recent positive trends we are seeing. >> reporter: a new study suggesting cases of the more contagious uk variant may be doubling every ten days in this country. so far, 10% of the population has received at least one dose of the vaccine. dr. anthony fauci today stressing the second dose is not only important for individuals, it's important to keep the virus from mutating. this week, los angeles county only giving out those second shots. but around the country, so many people have been scrambling to get a second appointment, like jean fitzgerald in washington. >> now i'm feeling like i'm kind of under a time crunch. you need to be able to schedule
the second shot. >> reporter: the president today taking a virtual tour of a mass vaccination site in arizona and keeping to his timeline to have enough vaccine doses by summer for 300 million americans. >> we're optimistic that we'll have enough of the vaccine in the pipeline to be able to provide shots for over -- including double shots -- for over 300 million people before we get through the summer. >> reporter: pfizer announcing they are now rolling out doses faster than originally planned, cutting their production time in half. with demand for vaccines only growing, all eyes are on that johnson & johnson vaccine the fda could green light by the end of the month. we got an inside look at emergent biosolutions in baltimore, where teams are working on that vaccine. >> since september, that's really when the manufacturing started, our engineering runs, and we've been in constant production since. >> reporter: and tonight, researchers are tracking an increase in confirmed cases in children, up 10% in the last two
weeks. the family of makenzie gongora in san antonio is looking for answers. they say the 9-year-old was sick with covid and recovering at home. >> doctors told them kind of the standard thing that they tell parents with kids with covid, especially with no respiratory issues, to keep an eye on her, keep her comfortable. >> reporter: but just three days after she tested positive, makenzie passed away. her cause of death still under review. >> and eva pilgrim joins us tonight, she's in baltimore where they are now working on that johnson & johnson vaccine, that single dose vaccine. and eva, president biden sticking to his timeline today, again today to say he would have 300 million americans vaccinated, he hopes, by the end of summer. and that prediction doesn't fully take into account what this single shot vaccine from johnson & johnson could do for this timeline. >> reporter: that's right, david. johnson & johnson has committed 100 million doses by the end of june. they are working around the clock here to get the early waves of the vaccine ready for
as soon as they get emergency use authorization. that is expected as early as the end of the month. david? >> this is a race against time, eva, as you know, against these variants. and tonight, the hunt for the mutations in the uk, after they were hit with the uk variant and others, of course. what they're now seeing there, with the u.s. now bracing for the uk variant to become potentially the dominant strain here in just weeks. abc's senior foreign correspondent ian pannell tonight inside the lab where they're hunting down mutations of the virus and how often they're actually seeing this virus change within just a month. >> reporter: tonight, inside the desperate hunt for new, highly contagious mutations of covid-19. the uk variant, now sweeping america, has already devastated parts of britain. but now, there's an even more worrying mutation, the south african variant. so rapid surge testing is now underway in parts of england to check everyone in neighborhoods where an outbreak's been identified.
>> i'm scared stiff. we're frightened, we're old people now. >> reporter: that testing's only possible because of what happens here, at the sanger institute in cambridge. it's the global leader in genomic sequencing, what makes up the new strains. this is some of the most important work on covid-19 in the world. the millions of samples arrive here and then they're taken into that building, and that's where the hunt for the mutations really begins. experts say the covid-19 virus mutates about twice a month, most are no more harmful. but some, like the uk and south african variants, are much more transmissible. that could mean more people getting sick and dying and raises urgent questions about how well the new vaccines will work. >> we are in a position globally that we're detecting these mutations, we know they're there, we have vaccine technology that potentially could overcome them. so, while they're concerning, we do have the technology. >> reporter: but the challenge is clear. in south africa over the weekend, health officials halting use of the astrazeneca
vaccine, because it did not appear to protect viral volunteers from mild or moderate illnesses. >> of course, that particular vaccine has not been approved in the u.s. as of yet, but we're continuing to track that, as well. ian pannell with us from london tonight, and ian, the new cdc director here in the u.s. says we need to do a lot more sequencing to track these variants here in the u.s. the research that you witnessed there, that's being shared with the u.s.? >> reporter: yeah, that's right. america is increasing its sequencing, but it does rely heavily on the work that's carried out here. but that is being made freely available to u.s. scientists and to others around the world. david? >> all right, ian pannell with us from london. ian, thank you. and now to the historic second impeachment trial of former president trump. it's less than 24 hours away now. we have new reporting here tonight on the case house prosecutors plan to make, leaning heavily on video of what members of congress experienced, what they saw first-hand. and former president trump,
after telling his supporters to, quote, fight like hell, his lawyers tonight now saying he only used the word "fight" a handful of times and didn't mean it literally, calling all of this political theater. rachel scott up on the hill tonight. >> reporter: on the eve of donald trump's second impeachment trial, democrats are sifting through videos like these. >> donald trump is still our president. >> reporter: preparing to use them to make their case the former president is "singularly responsible" for the violence at the capitol. in this vid yes,hot by "new yorker" reporter luke mogelson, this group makes it clear who they believe sent them. >> there's a [ bleep ] million of us out there and we are listening to trump, your boss. >> reporter: the goal, to force senators, now jurors, to relive the chaos they witnessed on january 6th. democrats argue trump spent months laying the groundwork for the insurrection. and that the rioters were spurred on by his words that day. >> and if you don't fight like hell, you're not going to have a country anymore. >> reporter: but in a 78-page brief, trump's defense team says
that was "political speech" protected by the first amendment. and of the over 10,000 words spoken, mr. trump used the word "fight" a little more than a handful of times, and he didn't mean it literally. calling the trial an act of political theater, insisting trump "did not direct anyone to commit lawless actions." and that those who did, "did so of their own accord." >> whose house? >> our house! >> reporter: but more than a dozen of those charged say they were following trump's directions. like jenna ryan of texas, who told station ktvt -- >> i thought i was following my president. i thought i was following what we were called to do. >> reporter: tonight, trump's lawyers demanding the case be dismissed immediately, saying an impeachment trial for a former president is unconstitutional. but democrats say trump "betrayed the american people" while still in office. writing, "he has no valid excuse or defense for his actions. and his efforts to escape accountability are entirely unavailing." >> so, let's get right to rachel scott, live up on the hill again tonight.
and rachel, tomorrow, of course, the first day of this trial and the first several hours expected to center around this debate of whether a senate trial of a former president is actually constitutional. this, of course, has never been done before, an impeachment trial of a former president, but democrats tonight are trying to make the argument that there is precedent here. >> reporter: yeah, david, and democrats had to go back nearly 150 years to the impeachment trial of 1876. it was held at the time for the secretary of war who had already left office. democrats say that sets precedent. but still, those house impeachment managers face a significant challenge. already, 45 republican senators have said the trial itself is unconstitutional, david. >> we'll be watching that right along with you, rachel. in the meantime, you are also following a breaking headline just as we're on tonight out of georgia. the secretary of state there officially launching an investigation into the former president, whether he violated the law when he made those phone calls pressuring elections officials. of course, we all heard that
audio where he said, "i just want to find 11,780 votes." >> reporter: yeah, david, it was on one of those phone calls, as you said, that trump asked the republican georgia secretary of state to find nearly 12,000 votes, to help him overturn president joe biden's victory. we know house impeachment managers are folding that into their case, but this development comes just hours before his second impeachment trial gets under way, david. >> all right, rachel scott live on the hill tonight. rachel, thank you. and we will have full coverage of the former president's second impeachment trial, it begins tomorrow afternoon. the trial scheduled to start at 1:00 p.m. eastern. george and the team will be right here and we'll have a special edition of "world news tonight" following that coverage. meantime, president biden's nearly $2 trillion relief plan tonight working its way through congress and this evening, there is news, word of a proposal to send up to $3,600 per child to american families. there's also news tonight on efforts to raise the federal minimum wage to $15. let's get right to our chief white house correspondent cecilia vega live at the white house tonight. she has late details for us. cecilia? >> reporter: hey, david, good evening to you. on that tax credit, democrats
feel confident that this will ultimately end up in that nearly $2 trillion covid relief package by the president. but let me show you what it does. it would be split into monthly payments, starting in july. $3,600 per child under the age of 6, $3,000 for kids 6 to 17 years old. that amount decreases for families earning more than $75,000 a year. the white house said today that president biden is on board with this. but on that minimum wage, the $15 an hour minimum wage, they are hitting a major road block there, david. take a look at this. a nonpartisan study out today found that while it would give a major boost to low income workers, it would cost about 1.4 million jobs and add $54 billion to the deficit over the next decade. the white house is pushing back on those findings, but even president biden is conceding now that this could be a loss at this point. he says democrats are going to have to work their way up in separate legislation to that $15 an hour, david. >> all right, tracking this covid relief plan. cecilia vega, thank you. we're going to turn to that developing headline i mentioned off the top tonight. it comes out of florida. the fbi and the secret service tonight are now investigating
that hack. who broke into a city's water plant computer system and were they trying to poison the water supply? what they changed in the water and why authorities are so concerned tonight. here's abc's victor oquendo from florida. >> reporter: tonight, authorities in florida are revealing a dangerous cyber attack, a hacker attempting to poison a town's water supply. it happened last friday in oldsmar on the gulf coast. according to the sheriff's office, that hacker gained remote accestoater plant's computer system and in less than five minutes changed the level of sodium hydroxide, also known as lye, the main ingredient in liquid drain cleaner, from 100 parts per million to more than 11,000 per million. >> we don't know right now whether the breach originated from within the united states or outside the country. we also do not know why the oldsmar system was targeted. >> reporter: thankfully, a plant operator noticed the system being accessed remotely and quickly caught onto the potentially harmful change and reverted the levels. city officials have disabled
that remote access system that was used in the hack and they are ensuring folks that there are several safeguards in place that would have prevented that contaminated water from ever entering the supply. there's no word on any suspects tonight. david? >> yeah, this is really alarming and we'll continue to follow it. victor, thank you. in the meantime, we turn next tonight to those deadly avalanches in the west and to the alarming images this evening. this has already been a very dangerous season. two avalanches in utah on saturday alone. four people killed. and a snowmobiler able to document another one of those terrifying incidents. here's will carr. >> reporter: tonight, new video capturing the terror that comes with an avalanche. this tsunami of snow barrelling towards a group of utah snowmobilers over the weekend. >> avalanche, huge. just came down. i pulled my chute, didn't work. i heard hunter yelling and here he is. you okay, bud? >> reporter: remarkably, brothers miles and hunter penrose and four others all made it out alive.
today, ski patrol at the solitude mountain resort telling us just how critical every second is. >> the greatest chance of survival, as far as rescue goes, is relying on your partners in your group to get you out of the snow. >> reporter: in utah's millcreek canyon, that's exactly how four people survived. four others, including 29-year-old sarah moughamian, did not make it. >> her soulmate was able to get out quickly and unbury a couple of people, but when he got to her, she wasn't breathing and he couldn't revive her. >> reporter: david, the u.s. just had its deadliest week for avalanches in more than a century, with 14 fatalities. it's because of a weak snow pack and there's more bad weather on the way. david? >> will carr tonight. will, thank you. when we come back here, we have been following that story, the grandfather charged after his 18-month-old granddaughter fell from that 11th story window of a cruise ship. news coming in tonight, the grandfather and the sentence now.
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tonight, that grandfather charged after his 18-month-old granddaughter fell from an 11th story window has now been sentenced tonight. it happened on a cruise ship docked in puerto rico. salvatore anello had pleaded guilty to negligent homicide. today, receiving three years probation. his family, including the parents of the child, had defended him from the start. when we come back here tonight, remembering a beloved sportscaster. be right back. with moderate to severe crohn's disease, i was there, just not always where i needed to be. is she alright? i hope so. so i talked to my doctor about humira. i learned humira is for people who still have symptoms of crohn's disease after trying other medications. the majority of people on humira saw significant symptom relief in as little as 4 weeks. and many achieved remission that can last. humira can lower your ability to fight infections. serious and sometimes fatal infections, including tuberculosis, and cancers, including lymphoma, have happened, as have blood, liver, and nervous system problems,
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finally tonight here, the super bowl, at times, the brady and gronk show all over again. it was the moment after the super bowl. the two quarterbacks, 25-year-old patrick mahomes, he was just 6 when tom brady won his first super bowl. >> that's what he's saying. >> right here, here's brady saying, hey. >> keep in touch. >> tom brady is the oldest quarterback ever to win the super bowl. he's now won seven times. in 2002, 2004, 2005. 2015, '17, '19 and, of course, last night. along with his buddy, rob gronkowski. back from retirement. >> here's brady's pass, it's gronkowski! the old patriot teammates reunite in the super bowl for a
score. >> brady and gronk together for years with the patriots. and back together in tampa bay. >> he's got such a great personality about him, just his way of being positive and, you know, when you're down and out, you want him with you. >> when he's at practice, he's coaching people up, he's coaching players up and helping guys out to get to the next level. >> and when he was asked, will he be back? >> there's more to come, as far as football? >> yeah, we're coming back. you got to know that. >> tom brady's coming back. >> stay tuned. and we're coming back right here tomorrow. hope to see you then. until then, have a good evening. good night. >> announcer: building a better bay area for a safe and secure
future. this is abc 7 news. losing is winning. as more data points drop, they show we are beating back the coronavirus pandemic here in california. new cases are wn hospitalizations down. even deaths are down. but the battle is not over yet. good evening and thank you for joining us. i'm ama daetz. >> and i'm dan ashley. you've heard the good news. now let's get you? details courtesy of governor gavin newsom. >> today we have just over 10,000 new cases, positive cases of people with covid-19. i want to put that in perspective. one month ago on january 8th, 30 days ago, we had over 50,000 cases. 10,000 cases today. one month ago today on january 8th we had a 14% positivity rate. today 5.0. 14% to 5%. 50,000 cases down to 10,000 cases. over the course of the last 30
days. >> it is remarkable progress in such a short time. but remember, it's because the pandemic was at its peak, we've never seen it spread as quickly as it did the past few months. now, here in the bay area what we're seeing mimics the state trend with cases coming down quickly. in total the bay area, including santa cruz county, has just topped 400,000 total cases. it's been exactly one month since we had 300,000. at this point in the race the two contenders are the variants and the vaccines. will one outpace the other, defeating its effectiveness? we're on vaccine watch because this will help build a better bay area. it's why we have a vaccine team dedicated to keeping you up to date on the status of supplies, the opening of new sites and finding solutions to the problems that come up. on our team is dr. alok patel who's joining us now live. >> yeah, dr. patel, you heard governor newsom give us the good news a moment ago. we won't ask you for the bad news, but do give us please some perspective. >> i appreciate you calling it perspective because i