May 6 coronavirus news

By Jessie Yeung, Adam Renton and Angela Dewan, CNN

Updated 8:57 p.m. ET, May 6, 2020
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2:38 a.m. ET, May 6, 2020

Takashi Murakami and Supreme teamed up to sell shirts for coronavirus aid. They've raised over $1 million

Renowned Japanese artist Takashi Murakami teamed up with fashion brand Supreme to fundraise during the coronavirus pandemic -- and ended up raising more than a million dollars.

Murakami, founder of the "superflat" movement that blurs the boundaries of high and low culture, helped create a T-shirt with his original artwork. The print features the Supreme logo against the artist's signature flowers. 

All of the proceeds will go to the non-profit organization Help USA to support youth and families facing homelessness during the pandemic, said Supreme, a cult US streetwear brand.

The shirt originally sold for $60. But anytime Supreme releases new items, they are quickly snatched up and resold for much higher prices online, with fans worldwide clamoring for the coveted goods -- and this time was no different. The T-shirt is reselling for up to $1,750 on the streetwear site Grailed.

On Tuesday, Help USA posted a photo of the shirt on Instagram, thanking Murakami and Supreme for donating $1,052,040 in sales.

"This incredible gift comes in a time of our clients' greatest need and supports our work nationally to provide the most vulnerable with a safe place to call home, food, and essential services during this crisis and beyond," said the post.
2:17 a.m. ET, May 6, 2020

Opinion: Trump's anti-China theory implodes

From Jeffrey D. Sachs

Editor's note: Jeffrey D. Sachs is a professor and director of the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University. The opinions expressed here are his own.

The big lie of the Trump administration is that China is the cause of America's problems. The meme has worked for a while, since it plays into American smugness that if China is succeeding, they must be cheating.

Trump and his right-wing allies upped this game recently by claiming the Covid-19 pandemic was the result of an accidental release from a Chinese laboratory and that China's "cover up" blocked an effective global response.

According to CNN, the still-secret findings of the Five Eyes intelligence agencies (the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada) pour cold water on this claim. So too does Trump's top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci.

Yet just this past Sunday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo asserted, "There is a significant amount of evidence that this came from that laboratory in Wuhan."

Such charges by the Trump administration and by Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas are reckless and dangerous. They could push the world to conflict just as the Bush administration's lies about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq pushed the US into war in 2003.

Read the full opinion here:

1:59 a.m. ET, May 6, 2020

This retired farmer who mailed Andrew Cuomo an N-95 mask has been given an honorary degree

From CNN's Christina Walker

Dennis Ruhnke holds two of his remaining N-95 masks as he stands with his wife, Sharon, at their home near Troy, Kansas.
Dennis Ruhnke holds two of his remaining N-95 masks as he stands with his wife, Sharon, at their home near Troy, Kansas. Charlie Riedel/AP

When Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York held up a letter and N-95 mask sent to him by a retired Kansas farmer, he called it humanity at its best.

"If you could, would you please give this mask to a nurse or doctor in your state?" read the March letter from Dennis Ruhnke.

Now, Ruhnke has been given an honorary degree from his state.

"Dennis' kindness and lifelong career in agriculture make him more than qualified to receive a degree," Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly said in a Facebook post.

Kelly and Kansas State University President Richard Myers presented Ruhnke with a bachelor's degree during a ceremony on Tuesday.

Ruhnke was two credits shy of earning his degree in 1971 when his father died, according to Kelly's post. He decided to leave school to look after his mother and the family farm.

The N-95 mask was one of five left over from Ruhnke's farming days, he said in the letter. He and his wife, who are both in their 70s, sent the unused mask to Cuomo amid a medical supply shortage.

New York has been the hardest hit state during the coronavirus pandemic, with more than 321,000 reported cases and at least 25,124 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.

1:40 a.m. ET, May 6, 2020

Indian Navy ships deployed to evacuate citizens from Maldives

From CNN's Esha Mitra in New Delhi 

Two Indian Navy ships have been deployed to Maldives to repatriate a thousand citizens, according to India's Ministry of Defence. 

The stranded citizens will begin to board the ships on May 8, in an operation that will bring people back to India in phases. 

Indian nationals who are permitted to return will undergo medical screening and will be subject to social distancing measures while onboard.

"These evacuation services will be charged. States will implement all standard prescribed preventive measures & arrange for a paid 14-day mandatory quarantine for these passengers." Hardeep Singh Puri, the Minister of Civil Aviation, tweeted on May 5.

India will also be evacuating citizens via air starting May 7, bringing back 14,800 passengers in 64 flights from 13 countries, according to India's Ministry of External Affairs.


1:25 a.m. ET, May 6, 2020

Trump pivots hard away from fight against unvanquished pandemic

Analysis from CNN's Stephen Collinson

US President Donald Trump wants to move on. "Wartime" leadership in a national crisis no longer fits his political timetable.

No matter that coronavirus cases are rising in many states and that governors are ignoring his guidelines about when it's safe to open. Trump is shrugging off warnings by scientists that the easing restrictions taking place across the country could cause tens of thousands of deaths.

The White House gave its clearest sign yet Tuesday, just less than six months from Election Day and as the US death toll topped 70,000, that it is moving from pandemic management to a message of revival and an aggressive pitch for a second term. And Trump is thwarting oversight efforts of how he and his administration responded to the pandemic that could reveal failures that worsened the outbreak.

Vice President Mike Pence revealed conversations about scaling back the administration's coronavirus task force perhaps around Memorial Day at the end of the month. Officials said that advisers like Drs. Anthony Fauci and Deborah Birx would remain on board. But closing the task force would make experts whose science-based arguments have sometimes contradicted Trump's overly optimistic projections far less visible.

Disbanding the task force would also raise questions about the administration's priorities in effectively declaring victory over a pandemic that appears likely to rage for many more months.

Asked in an ABC News interview if the price of opening will be more deaths, Trump replied: "It's possible there will be some, because you won't be locked into an apartment or a house or whatever it is."

The President called on Americans to maintain social distancing and handwashing, but claimed that stay-at-home orders were also injurious to national well-being.

Read the full analysis:

1:07 a.m. ET, May 6, 2020

Pakistan records highest number of coronavirus deaths in a single day

From CNN’s Sophia Saifi in Islamabad 

A total of 40 people died from the coronavirus in Pakistan yesterday -- the country's highest single-day increase in deaths during the outbreak, according to the health ministry.

The ministry also confirmed 1,049 new cases, raising Pakistan's total to 22,550 cases and 526 deaths.

A day earlier, the country reported its largest daily increase in cases, with 1,315 new infections within 24 hours.

In a short address to the nation on Monday, Prime Minister Imran Khan announced that he plans to “ease restrictions” on the ongoing national lockdown to “help the economy and daily wage earners.” 

Pakistan’s lockdown is scheduled to run through May 9.

12:50 a.m. ET, May 6, 2020

Coronavirus could infect up to 70% of the US population before it slows down, infectious disease expert says

From CNN's Jen Christensen

Dr. Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, speaks at a news conference on Wednesday, April 22 at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis.
Dr. Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, speaks at a news conference on Wednesday, April 22 at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. Glen Stubbe/Star Tribune via AP, Pool

If the coronavirus pandemic was a nine-inning game, we're only at the second inning, said Michael Osterholm, the director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota.

Covid-19 will likely infect 60% to 70% of the US population before it slows down, Osterholm told CNN on Tuesday. He estimates that between 5% and 15% have been infected so far.

“All the things we’re doing to kind of control it will help, but it’s going to keep moving like that," Osterholm said. "That’s what these viruses do.”

The country has “a long ways to go” to get to a level of herd immunity, he added.

Osterholm and his colleagues have offered three possible scenarios for the pandemic:

  1. Transmission will calm a bit in the summer and come back hard in the fall and winter.
  2. There will be ups and downs -- waves of infections -- in different places over different times.
  3. There will be a “slow burn” that lasts for 18 months or longer.
“Think how much pain, suffering, death and economic disruption we’ve had in getting from 5% to 15% of the population infected and hopefully protected,” Osterholm said. “Wake up, world. Do not believe the rhetoric that says this is going to go away.”
12:41 a.m. ET, May 6, 2020

The US has recorded more than 71,000 coronavirus deaths

The United States has recorded at least 1,204,351 cases of coronavirus and 71,070 related deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.

On Monday, the US reported 24,063 new cases and 2,142 deaths. 

The totals includes cases from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and other US territories, as well as repatriated cases.

CNN is tracking US coronavirus cases here:

12:39 a.m. ET, May 6, 2020

Trump was wrong about the coronavirus model, model maker says

From CNN's Jen Christensen

US President Donald Trump speaks during a round table on supporting Native Americans on Tuesday, May 5, in Phoenix.
US President Donald Trump speaks during a round table on supporting Native Americans on Tuesday, May 5, in Phoenix. Evan Vucci/AP

Prominent coronavirus modeler Dr. Christopher Murray says US President Donald Trump was wrong when he said Murray's latest forecast about the number of virus deaths did not account for mitigation measures.

The model, often cited by the White House, now forecasts more than 134,000 people will die from Covid-19 by August -- double its earlier projection.

Trump, when asked by CNN about the new model from Murray’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), claimed that the model "assumes no mitigation."

Murray confirmed that’s incorrect.

“In our model we see deaths going up much higher than we originally thought,” Murray said Tuesday on CNN Tonight with Don Lemon.
“That’s really being driven by people getting out and about, more mobility, and, most importantly, states relaxing social distancing mandates. That’s pushing up contact rates, pushing up transmission.”

Murray, chair of health metrics sciences at the University of Washington, said there are some positive factors that have also influenced the model. An increase in testing and contact tracing will help reduce the number of deaths, he predicts. Summer temperatures should also “put a little bit of a brake on transmission,” Murray said.

“So all those are factored into our forecast of 134,000 deaths,” Murray said.

Murray said use of masks, avoiding large gatherings and working from home will help reduce the spread of the virus.

“The real challenge will be the temptation that states have to relax more mandates. That’s going to push up potentially more transmission and some states may get tipped over the edge and go back to sort of exponential growth of, you know, a New York style situation,” Murray said.