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tv   MSNBC Live With Craig Melvin  MSNBC  July 16, 2020 8:00am-9:00am PDT

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a good thursday morning to you. craig melvin here. here are the facts on this pandemic at this hour. we've got breaking news in the race for a vaccine. first of all, the united states along with our allies, united kingdom say rush is trying to steal information regarding the pandemic and hacking. we're getting a look at new weekly unemployment numbers, 1.3 million americans filed, the 17th straight week where we've topped 1 million claims. in georgia, the governor banning cities and countying from ordering people to wear masks in public places. he is voiding orders from around 15 local governments across the state. we are weeks away from seeing what that impact, what the impact of that decision will be. but one thing is clear. our front line medical workers
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across the country are facing a tough fight to save lives right now, and they're asking in some cases begging everyone to simply wear a mask. >> wearing a mask is a small thing. even if it doesn't work, what's the harm in wearing a mask? but it does work. it's what's kept our exposure rates low in our hospital, is everybody is wearing a mask. >> these patients turn very quickly. they can go from using no oxygen to a high demand of oxygen within a matter of an hour. >> whenever a patient comes in as a trauma, they're literally rolling in off the streets and you have absolutely no idea what the covid status of that patient is. >> we have our reporters spread out all over the country as this pandemic impacts schools, hospitals, testing and, of course, our way of life. but we start with that breaking news i mentioned a few moments
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ago. the united states, uk, canada, they say russia tried to steal crucial coronavirus research through hacking. nbc's matt bradley is following that part of the story. matt, what can you tell us? >> reporter: it's a rouge revolution, craig. we're just hearing from british authorities that the russians had been using some of the same tools that u.s. intelligence officials said they had used to hack the presidential election in the u.s. back in 2016. implicated here is apt 29. you might know them as cozy bear. remember cozy bear and fancy bear, they were the two malware groups that were found inside the democratic national committee back in 2016. now the british government with the american government are saying the same group, cozy bear, is trying to hack institutions that are actually trying to find a solution for our current crisis. they're trying to find a vaccine for covid-19. if this is true, if these
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revelations bear out, and it looks like there's a lot of agreement from bot the brits and the united states, it would show the russians don't see medical research like this as off limits. it doesn't look as though we're necessarily trying to sabotage research efforts. i seems as though they're trying to steal them. it goes to show the competition among countries to find this vaccine could reach such a fever pitch that governments are willing to weigh in and hack each other including private institutions for information. here in britain oxford university is very much involved in trying to find a vaccine, partnering with astrazeneca and they have gotten close to coming up with a vaccine. we have been reporting on it constantly. the british government was aware of this problem and upped security for some of the institutions looking for a vaccine earlier this year. it's unclear how this is going to bounce back in washington because president trump, of course, has a quite complicated relationship with russia.
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so whether or not he approves of this -- remember, this group that came out with this in britain, they're under the gchq, a british intelligence organization that president trump has accused of spying on his campaign. there's a lot of trust loss across the atlantic ocean and with institutions of intelligence in the american government. craig. >> matt bradley in london starting us off on that breaking news, thank you. right now major fault lines here are emerging in orange county california as families debate what school is going to look like in the fall. the board of education is endorsing guidelines to let students back in the classrooms without requiring masks, without requiring social distancing. the backlash, as you might images in, has been swift. nbc's erin mclaughlin is at the orange county department of education in costa mesa, california. the spotlight on orange county is intense. at this point not clear what's going to happen next.
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take us inside this battle that's happening there about how to reopen schools. >> reporter: craig, in context within orange county is absolutely critical here when you consider the positivity rate in this part of california is 14%. epidemiologists tell me that suggests mid-range to large outbreaks happening within this community and a lack of testing. they say opening a school within the face of those kind of metrics risks an outbreak and a shutdown at the school within weeks. now, the board of education is advisory only, not binding. we're already seeing school districts go their own way to the north of the county. santa ana announced it won't be reopening schools. it will be distance learning come the fall. joining me now is the superintendent of schools here in orange county, al mijares.
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what is your reaction to these recommendations by the board of education? are they helpful, or are they confusing the situation? >> they're most certainly confusing the situation. quite frankly, i think it's an ethical issue here. it's a form of malpractice. our job is to protect students at all costs. that's the number one thing parents want across the country, for their kids to be safe. it's unconscionable for us to suggest we should treat this thing lightly. it's a very serious problem. the pandemic is something we have to heed with a great amount of dill lens. >> reporter: now, the department of education has issued its own guidelines. there's state guidelines, federal guidelines. if you're a parent right now within your county, who should you listen to? >> you should listen to the orange county department of education because we have created a plan from a multidisciplinary perspective. we've engaged medical doctors. certainly this is something we
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have to rely upon, what are the doctors saying in this particular case? we have doctors, educators, community people involved with this, parents involved. leaders in different areas of the school system and we've created a document called oc together, a guide for reopening our schools. it's all done on the internet. it's live. people can access it at any time. it's a very systematic process we're following and a plan we're following that aligns with the california department of public health, california department of education and our own health care agency. >> reporter: what are parents telling you? what are their concerns? >> parents are very frightened. as you mentioned, the hot spots we've seen in santa ana, as that intensifies and news gets out there, parents are fearful. the most vulnerable are those parents who have no means. they're at the poverty level. they don't have health care. for them to send their kids to school and get sick with no health care is frightening. they'd rather keep them at home in many cases.
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mind you, we want our kids to be in school. that's where they belong. but when you're dealing with a disease of this level, it's not something you can treat lightly. we have to treat it with a great degree of care. >> from the beginning of this pandemic, there have been voices here within orange county pushing back on the science. the chief medical officer within the county resigned to death threats for her mask orders, for her shutdown orders. do you think the politics of the situation is putting people's health and in this case child welfare at risk? >> yeah. i do believe the ideological issues that we face today are intense and very divisive. this is no time for politics and ideology in the sense of what is right for kids. right now we have to think about the everyday experience in the life of a child and do everything we can to protect them. they're minors. they're not called adults for many reasons. they're tender, still developing
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and growing. they depend upon the adults to keep them safe. >> mr. mijares, thank you very much. craig, back to you. >> erin mclaughlin, thank you. please thank the superintendent as well. sort of a glimpse of the conversation that's happening there in california. similar conversations happening all over this country right now. texas meanwhile seeing a surge of coronavirus cases. one of its best tools in the fight against the virus is about to go away. the rio grande valley has one of three federal testing sites in the country and it closes tomorrow. nbc's priscilla thompson isality that testing site in edinburg, texas. priscilla, what are you seeing on the ground there and what are plans for testing when that site shuts down? >> reporter: craig, i want to give you a glimpse at what this operation looks like on the
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ground. there are seven lines running simultaneously, lines of cars stretching all the way back to the end of this parking lot, and thousands of people have come through here to be tested over the past week and a half. i'm actually here with the man responsible for running this site. chief schneider, talk to me a little bit about what you've been seeing on the ground here and what impact this testing site has had in the fight against covid in this community. >> yes, good morning. testing has been a great impact here to our area. there's such a great need. our mayor and council felt it's very important to get opportunity for testing. what better than the facilities we have here to manage the massive crowds. since we've started this, we've already seen over 23,000 people come through this testing site, average about 3,000 to 3,500 a day. it gives everybody situational awareness to where they are today at this moment when they get those results. very, very important to
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everybody in this fear going on with covid-19. >> reporter: this site was set to close on tuesday, extended until friday. these resources are going away tomorrow. what happens then? >> we will invite the opportunity, if they want to reset this, there's plenty of opportunity for that. we're really appreciative of the fact that it was set here in edinburg. we're able to affect everybody's lives in the past week and a half, giving them the results they need to make choices for their life in the future, whether it's quarantining or continuing on in their life and they work. it's very important for them to understand where are they at at this point, exposed or not exposed. >> reporter: do you think the site needs to remain open here in the rio grand valley? >> i think with 1.5 million people here, even with the numbers we've had in the past week, the need is going to continue for months.
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so we invite that opportunity to reset and continue testing in multiple locations p the federal government and the state is ready to press on with this. >> reporter: chief, thank you. >> thank you. >> reporter: craig, these are designed to be short-term sites, they come in and test as many people as possible, and then they leave. the communities are left to deal with how to contain the virus and continuing the testing. officials here telling me some level of testing will certainly continue here. craig. >> priscilla thompson there in texas. priscilla, thank you. meanwhile, starting tonight masks will no longer be an option in alabama. they will be a requirement. the governor of alabama says they had no choice. fatalities in that state just set another record, cases up 50% in the past two weeks. there are a record number of patients in state hospitals. nbc's dasha burns is in
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montgomery, alabama. dasha, we've watched face coverings and mask mandates become politicized. this new mandate there in alabama considering the pandemic is intensifying there, how is it being received? >> reporter: hey, craig. alabama is certainly no exception to the mask politics we're hearing across the country. in fact, there even seems to be a bit of a split within state officials. the governor had been pretty resistant until this kind of order until yesterday when she said the numbers do not lie. craig, the numbers here do keep going up. but the lieutenant governor has actually come out against the order. he said it's an overstep on the part of the government. he says it infringes on individual's rights to make their own health decisions and on the rights of business owners to their property. craig, we've been strolling the streets of montgomery here this morning and talking to people about their reaction to this order. i've got to tell you, the
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conversations i've been having here this morning sound pretty different than what we're hearing from the politicians. take a listen to some of what i heard this morning. >> i think it's perfectly appropriate, very sensible and good policy. i'm all for it. >> my husband is in a high-risk category. so it's super important personally. >> they tell you what kind of toilet you can have in your house. your cell phone can track everywhere you are, what you buy and what you do. why is protecting other people and stopping deaths overstepping? >> reporter: craig, of course, this is all jun anecdotal evidence, but every single person i spoke with this morning agreed with the order. some were very concerned about the spread of coronavirus. others said they weren't too worried about it, weren't worried about getting sick themselves, but they were more than willing to wear a mask in public out of respect for others. craig. >> dasha burns in montgomery for us, thank you. meanwhile in tennessee,
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coronavirus cases have jumped 99% in just two weeks. a hot spot there is hamilton county, home to chattanooga. the county saw its greatest single day inning crease in confirmed cases on tuesday. the number of hospitalizations is also climbing. i want to bring in chattanooga marianne difficult burke. the health department for hamilton county says the turn-around time for people to get coronavirus test results back is getting longer. what's your chief concern about what you're seeing in your city right now? >> we have a bunch of concerns that are coming with the rise in coronavirus cases. one is that, as the time to get results back climbs, that means contact tracing less effective because people don't know what to do. on top of that, we don't have a mask mandate in any area around
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us. we put hamilton county mayor and the health department put ours in at the end of last week. but we are the center of the region. so we have more than just our local cases in the hospital, and that means everybody around us affects what happens here. >> you're in a unique position. as i understand it, tennessee's governor has taken some of the power to respond to the crisis in your city out of your hands. that power now lands with the county. has that made it harder to coordinate a response to this pandemic? >> we shut down incredibly early. as of may 1, we only had about a little over 1.5% of the statewide cases even though we're the fourth largest county in tennessee. we've rapidly seen those numbers climb. what we have to do is have a bigger intervention. we need to have it as quickly as
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possible because, as i was saying earlier, chattanooga is the center of the region. we also have northern georgia right on our border. so having coordinated policy that ensures everybody here is safe is critical to ensure all our hospitals are not overwhelmed. >> mayor, this battle over masks that's playing out all over the country, alabama implementing the statewide mask mandate we just reported on. georgia overriding local mask efforts. how are folks there in your city of chattanooga, how have they reacted to face coverings? >> they've overwhelmingly adopted it. it's probably 90-plus percent adoption rate in the last few days. nobody asks you when you go to the hospital and have a broken
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bone whether you're a democratic or republican before they tell you what to do. the same thing is true when it comes to public health. this is the same thing for everybody. i think people are rapidly understanding that. by the way, here in the south and in tennessee, people want to obey the law, and that's what we're finding. >> mayor -- sorry, mayor, i thought we lost you for a second. chattanooga had about $2.5 million set aside to help small businesses during the shutdown. as we understand it, the money is gone. what else can you do to help small businesses if this crisis continues? >> we rely on sales and hotel/motel tax for a lot of our income. we had to cut roughly $8.5
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million from our budget this year. we need the federal government's help so that, if bad things happen, if we see further declines, then we can have some dollars to help our small local businesses survive. that's what we did at the very beginning. but the situation at the moment is worse than it was a few months ago, and our hospitality industry is devastated by this. yesterday we announced that ironman, which we're one of the premier sites for ironman competitions, we're canceling two of those for the rest of the year. that is devastating for so many businesses in our community. we need the federal government to pass some kind of local assistance help so we can then ensure that our small businesses can survive these next several months. chattanooga tennessee marianne difficult burke, thanks for your time this morning. >> thank you. we've got some breaking news
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about the number of people filing for unemployment. it's something we get a lot of questions about from our viewers. what happens when my benefits run out in just two weeks? we're going to ask our experts your questions next. also, new warning signs for president trump's re-election bid. steve kornacki standing by to take us through some key findings in a new poll to show us what's changing. what changed from 2016 to now. the countdown has begun... 'til everyone can enjoy a professional clean feel... at home. you're having one more bite! no! one more bite!
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more than 1.3 million americans filed for unemployment last week. that was more than economists predicted. take a look at this. the small blue bars on this chart, those small blue bars, they're the number of people who filed for unemployment each week. the line, that's how much the total number has grown since just mid march.
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it's now, as you can see there, more than 51 million people. for context, that's roughly the population of our nation's entire west coast, california, oregon, washington state's populations combined. so with another week of record jobless numbers and coronavirus cases, we know you have a lot of questions. we have our experts here to try and help answer some of those questions. cnbc elam me' and steve corwin, ceo and president of new york's presbyterian hospital. we want to start with unemployment, elon. weekly benefits set to run out at the end of the month. we get this question every day from a number of viewers. this particular viewer asking, will congress extend unemployment for those who are scheduled to return in september? any update here?
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>> so i think it is very likely that congress will allow states to keep paying those sort of baseline unemployment benefits. but i think the real question here is what happened to the extra $600 additional federal aid that congress approved in the c.a.r.e.s. act. i think that's more up in the air. i doubt it would be that high because republicans believe that the amount is actually a disincentive to work. people can make more staying at home than they can on the job. i talked to one source last night who said they believe the number could potentially be a compromise of about $400 and maybe phase out after that. so there is still room for negotiation and we'll have a better sense of the parameters of this debate once senate majority leader mitch mcconnell relieases his coronavirus packae that could be next week. >> dr. corwin, this about face
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masks. patricia writing, i believe reporting yesterday that bandanna-like face coverings are not protective. what type of mask should we be looking for? are washable or disposable masks effective? dr. corwin? >> thanks for that question, patricia. let's do mask 101. we measure the effectiveness of masks by how many small particles, microscopic particles are kept out. hence n95 means 95% of the small microscopic particles do not get in. surgical masks are not as effective as n95s, and bandannas and cloth coverings are not as effective as surgical masks. one thing is what's the per rossity of it. the second thing is what's the fit? you've shown a picture of people with masks. first of all, if you don't cover both your nose and your mouth, that's a problem. secondly, if the mask doesn't
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fit tightly around your mouth and nose, not only can air get out, air can get in and it defeats the purpose. so the answer is, if you can get surgical masks which now are more in abundant supply, it's a lot better than a bandanna or some sort of cosmetic covering. if you want to use a bandanna on top of the surgical mask, that's great. if you can get a surgical mask, that would be the best advice i could give. >> ylan, this one is for you. our viewer writes, i never got my stimulus check. i filed my 2019 taxes and was eligible. what happened and what can i do? ylan, what can they do? >> well, the first thing i'd tell this viewer is they're not alone. the latest data we have is from june and show that 35 million stimulus checks had still not gone out. they can go to irs.gov to check the status of their refund payments. but i think it's also quite possible that by the time they
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get their stimulus check, they may actually be do another one. there's a lot of support on capitol hill for another round of direct payments. democrats support it. president trump supports it. the question is really how much would it be and who would get it? in the previous round, almost everyone received a stimulus check or was eligible to receive a stimulus check. this time republicans are kicking around an income limit of around $40,000. there is broad support for the general idea from both sides of the aisle. >> this next one is about traveling during this pandemic, dr. corwin. mary sullivan writes, my father wants to ride from the east coast to the west coast via amtrak because he thinks it will be safer than flying on an airplane. he plans to stay inside the sleeper car and the porters will be bringing him all his meals. is train travel safer than an airplane? and what can we do to make his trip safer?
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>> thanks for that question. churchill says americans always do the right thing after having tried everything else. i think we're getting the message now around protecting ourselves. and i think that my personal belief is that ms. sullivan's father has the right idea. less social contact, making sure -- i think the train is safer than the plane the way she's described his trip. i think masking for himself and mask -- having the porters masked would protect him even more. i think as a country we're getting the message now that we've got to do the social distancing and masking. the short answer is i think his train travel plan is probably better than going on a plane. >> dr. corwin, thank you. ylan mui, thank you as well. if you're watching or listening on sirius satellite radio, you can email the questions to us at
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talk@msnbc.com. you can also tweet us using #msnbcanswers. president trump is sinking in the polls and he's making a big change at the top of his campaign. steve kornacki is going to join us next with that. he's also going to show us the groups that were loyal to the president in 2016 that seem to be turning away from him now. the trump campaign also taking hits from inside the gop. maryland's republican governor, larry hogan just wrote a scathing op-ed in t"the washington post" head lined "fighting alone." governor hogan writes in part, i watched as the president down played the outbreak severity and as the white house failed to issue public warnings, draw up a 50-state strategy or dispatch medical gear or lifesaving ventilators from the american stockpile to american hospitals. eventually it was clear that waiting around for the president to run the nation's response was
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hopeless. that's maryland republican governor larry hogan. he's also going to be joining my colleague andrea mitchell next hour right here on msnbc. .
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with less than four months until the general election, a shakeup this morning in the president's re-election bid. brad parscale out as campaign manager. he'll be replaced by deputy campaign manager, veteran republican operative bill stappian. a smaller than expected turnout at the rally in tulsa, but the bigger story continues to be these falling poll numbers. nbc's steve kornacki follows the polls, tracks them closely and joins me to dig into those numbers. steve, what jumps out at you most with regards to these poll numbers? >> i'll build to it attend. there's one number at the end that really surprised me. let me take you through it. the overall number, our nbc/"wall street journal" poll,
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51-40. if you ask folks if you approve of trump's performance on the economy, a majority say yes, 54-42. start of the year trump thought he'd ride the economy to a second term. what has happened since then, the coronavirus. of course, the president's handling of that deeply unpopular. also a lot about race relations, sort of in the news right now. again, the president's handling of that almost two to one negative. these two issues have overwhelmed the coverage the last couple months. and the president is not being helped by this anymore. he's being hurt by these two other issues. that's the big picture view. if you want to take a look at the demographics here, where's the movement since 2016? among african-american voters, this is similar to what we saw in '16. hispanic voters, fairly similar to 2016. the movement has been among white voters. trump is ahead in our poll among white voters.
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in 2016 in the exit poll he won white voters by 20 points. the movement here, groups of white voters here voting very differently. non-college whites, whites without a college degree, trump leads by 22. he won this group by almost 40 points than white voters with a college degree. jooid is cleaning up, a 15-point margin. wasn't long ago this was a core republican group. you can see biden here with a clear advantage. there's also this question. this is basically, is there no chance you will support? 50% of voters in our poll say there's no chance they'll support trump at all, off limits. 50%. half of the electorate. the number for biden is 37. 13% say their vote is up for grabs. you see this pretty overwhelming advantage for joe biden. the surprise to me is this. if you ask folks their personal feelings about the candidates, trump is very unpopular.
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so is biden. these aren't good numbers for biden. certainly not good numbers for trump. you look at the advantage on every other question, biden has it clearly right now. it doesn't seem to be because there's overwhelming popularity for biden. it just seems to be an indictment at least in the public's view right now of the president's performance, craig. >> wow. it would seem based on what you just showed me that the only silver lining for the president so far is that his -- the opposition is slightly better in terms of the negative numbers? >> if you're the trump campaign, i think you would say maybe there's something here to work with. there's a very high negativity rating for biden. if you're the trump campaign, you're saying bietd den hasn't been getting a lot of attention lately. maybe there's a way to get more attention on him. as the campaign evolves, there will be a bigger spotlight. maybe this will come to play more.
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it's a huge difference. in 2016, hillary clinton was very unpopular, trump very unpopular. the folks who didn't like either one broke for donald trump. you're seeing the folks who don't like biden, don't like trump, they're clearly breaking biden's way. the trump campaign is going to clearly have to reverse that. >> steve kornacki, thanks. i would encourage folks who use twitter to look at steve's take on the twitter outage yesterday. cities across this country trying to fight systemic racism. kansas city, missouri's mayor just got a big change passed, even a facebook shout-out from snoop dogg. the mayor is going to join me on the other side of this break. plus the search for the solution in this pandemic. so far only two drugs are really working to treat coronavirus patients. doctors are warning those drugs are running out.
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there's an interesting new warning from missouri's public health team that people they're seeing contract coronavirus are getting younger and younger. in fact, the median age for the last week, 35 years old. i want to bring in kansas city, missouri, mayor quinton lucas. good to see you again. why do you think so many of your state's new cases are in younger people? >> i think if you look at a lot of the activities young peopleal are taking part in, bars have continued to be full, a lot of these larger parties. that's where most of our challenge is coming from. we're trying to remind young people they should be following social distancing rules, wearing masks. there's a little bit of youth in it and we're trying to get that to change. >> i'm reminded of a khalid song
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title. i think it's "young and dumb." you can't say that. that's a song title. mr. mayor, you recently extended the city's order to wear a mask in indoor public spaces and where social distancing is impossible. are people taking it seriously and following your advice? >> you know, they are, actually. when we first put on the order, there was a lot more dissension. we're in a red state here in the middle of the state. i think a lot of people, particularly in kansas city, even if they don't know why they're wearing them, know they're doing it to be good to other people. i think you're seeing pretty much unanimous following of our rules. i think people are saying this just makes sense and this is a way we can keep things open. we're not that far from texas where you've seen the spike in cases, seen more things shutting down. i know a lot of people in kansas city don't want to see that. that's where you're seeing good
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compliance of our mask order and we're seeing it indefinitely. we don't want to see it closing down again. >> the last time you joined us on the broadcast, you told us about your push to get marijuana offenses from the city code. this is what you said a few weeks ago. >> it can't be a conversation about one area of the criminal justice system. we need to look how how people get stopped, why certain people get incarcerated. >> now the city council has passed your plan, the decision there even got a shout-out from snoop dogg on facebook. how is this going to work in real terms? what does this mean for the people in your city? >> what i think it means is as soon as the ordinance is in effect which should be probably today or tomorrow, then we will see less activity relating to people being stopped and getting cited for marijuana offenses. what that means is, you're going
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to have folks that are not coming into the criminal justice system. almost with the stroke of a pen when i was signing the ordinance, 800 people subject to fewer criminal remove arrest warrants for people who have things like parking tickets. in my city and most of the country, if you don't pay your parking tickets over a certain period of time, if you don't pay the fees of it, you can end up with an arrest warrant end up in jail. i think there's no reason for that. there's other ways to deal with that, the collection process, making sure to get the money. we should not criminalize poverty and should not criminalize entire communities. that's what these reforms need to be about. the way you build better trust is the community knowing they're not being overpoliced. they can live their lives in a normal way. frankly, if you don't have money to do something, that means
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you're subject to arrest, incarceration and criminal penalties beyond that. >> mayor quinton lucas, good to see you again. thanks for your time and your perspective as well. a new warning from doctors in pandemic hot spots this morning. there are only two drugs really working to fight this virus, and they're running out. >> by friday we may not have any more. you get used to pet odors in your car. you think it smells fine, but your passengers smell this. eliminate odors you've gone noseblind to for up to 30 days with the febreze car vent clip. wow, it smells good in here. so you and your passengers can breathe happy.
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even if you're on a statin? are you still at risk for a heart attack or stroke? statins may lower some risks, but may not be enough. that's why science delivered vascepa. for people who have persistent cardiovascular risk factors and take a statin only vascepa is clinically proven to provide 25% lower risk from heart attack and stroke. don't take vascepa if you're allergic to icosapent ethyl or any inactive ingredient in vascepa. tell your doctor about any medicines you take, and if you are allergic to fish or shellfish. stop taking vascepa and seek medical help if you have symptoms of an allergic reaction. serious side effects may occur like heart rhythm problems and bleeding. heart rhythm problems may occur in more people with persistent cardiovascular risk or who have had heart rhythm problems. tell your doctor if you have symptoms such as irregular beat, lightheadedness, dizziness, shortness of breath, chest discomfort or fainting. possible side effects include muscle and joint pain. proven by science, fda approved. vascepa can reduce your risk and add cardio protection. call your doctor about vascepa today.
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some more breaking news here on a thursday morning. cvs and target now joining costco and walmart and kroger. cvs and target announcing moments ago they are also going to require anyone who enters one of their stores to wear a face covering. at target that requirement will start august 1. at cvs it is going to start requiring masks on monday, july 20. meanwhile, doctors across the country are searching for solutions to treat coronavirus. so far only two drugs are showing pretty good evidence that they actually work. but as nbc's dr. john torres reports, hospitals are running out. >> reporter: an emotional welcome home for michael janson. >> i should have been dead. >> reporter: the new york dad was one of the pandemic's early covid patients. in a coma and on a ventilator
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for 42 days. >> i was telling him, we want you to fight, you can do this. >> reporter: out of options, michael's doctors tried an unproven antiviral called remdesivir topped with cheap steroid for inflammation. >> you have a patient dying from not just the infection but by the body's own response. that's the one-two punch is critical. >> i know they saved my life. within 24 hours of getting the steroids after the other drug, i showed improvement, i stabilized. >> reporter: recent clinical trials found remdesivir can shorten the length of the disease and might save lives. department of health and human services, hhs, was sending free remdesivir directly to hospitals. but critics say hhs data isn't keeping pace with surging cases. >> the federal government should be making sure we're moving the supplies necessary to treat those patients in the hospitals in those states. but it's not clear that those
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distribution mechanisms are in place. >> reporter: hospitals in these hotspot states tell nbc news they're low on this life saving drug. >> by friday we may not have any more. >> reporter: the government's supply of remdesivir will run out by september if not sooner. and the price tag is about to go up. >> we just can't trust drug companies not to try and profiteer on this pandemic. >> reporter: and doctors fear patients today won't be able to access or afford one of the only drugs with evidence behind it. >> it's not fair to a patient or a patient's family to have to think about those things when they're loved one's life is on the line. >> reporter: and craig, what we're hearing now, again, it's not just a supply issue, it's also a redistribution issue. as a physician, when you're taking care of patients and you know there are two drugs out there that have shown lifesaving benefits, not to be able to get those two drugs or to think there might be a shortage coming up, that can be extremely
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disheartening because you know they work. there are areas that have it, areas that don't, but also getting that supply up, because by september, remdesivir is going to start to run out. what's going to happen after that? the need is only going to grow. hopefully the supply grows with it, craig. >> it is hard to get your head around the fact that the cost of the drug is potentially going to be going up as well. dr. john torres, always good to have you, my friend, thank you. and that is going to do it for me this hour. in our next hour, the new concern as summer heats up. is air conditioning making the spread of this virus worse? "andrea mitchell reports" starts after a short break. mitchell res after a short break. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪
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mornings were made for better things ♪ than rheumatoid arthritis. when considering another treatment, ask about xeljanz a pill for adults with moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis when methotrexate has not helped enough. xeljanz can reduce pain, swelling, and further joint damage, even without methotrexate. xeljanz can lower your ability to fight infections. before and during treatment, your doctor should check for infections like tb and do blood tests. tell your doctor if you've had hepatitis b or c, have flu-like symptoms, or are prone to infections. serious, sometimes fatal infections, cancers including lymphoma, and blood clots have happened. taking a higher than recommended dose of xeljanz for ra may increase risk of death. tears in the stomach or intestines and serious allergic reactions have happened. don't let another morning go by without asking your doctor
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about the pill first prescribed for ra more than seven years ago. xeljanz.
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good day, i'm andrea mitchell in washington. the number of coronavirus cases is continuing to surge out of control, reaching more than 3.5 million confirmed cases in the u.s. president trump trying to distance himself from his top trade adviser peter navarro's column in "usa today" that blasted dr. anthony fauci. despite multiple reports that navarro and the president are actually in sync on the attack. dr. fauci now responding to the white house smear campaign. >> it is a bit bizarre. i don't really fully understand it. if you talk to reasonable people in the white house, they realize that was a major mistake on their part because it doesn't do anything but reflect poorly on them. and i don't think that that was their intention. i don't know. i cannot figure out

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