June 25 coronavirus news

By Helen Regan, Adam Renton, Meg Wagner, Melissa Macaya and Mike Hayes, CNN

Updated 4:35 p.m. ET, November 23, 2020
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8:50 p.m. ET, June 25, 2020

The US is "not even close" to doing enough to fight the pandemic, Gates says

From CNN's Melissa Mahtani


Speaking to CNN's Anderson Cooper and Dr. Sanjay Gupta in a coronavirus town hall, Microsoft founder Bill Gates said the fact that people are still dying in the US today shows that the country is "not even close" to doing enough to fight the pandemic.

He also expressed disappointment with what he called a lack of US leadership to tackle this virus globally, which has led to developing countries — such as Brazil and India — bearing the brunt of this disease.

"The US, in particular, hasn't had the leadership messages or coordination that you would have expected," he said.

Gates said he remains hopeful that the US will "step up" and help get the tools, particularly the vaccine, out to everyone in the world.

8:45 p.m. ET, June 25, 2020

White House Coronavirus Task Force to hold first public meeting in almost two months

From CNN's Matt Hoye

Vice President Mike Pence arrives for the Senate Republicans' lunch in the Hart Senate Office Building on Wednesday, June 24, in Washington, DC.
Vice President Mike Pence arrives for the Senate Republicans' lunch in the Hart Senate Office Building on Wednesday, June 24, in Washington, DC. Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call/AP Images

The White House announced tonight that Vice President Mike Pence would lead a public coronavirus task force briefing Friday morning, the first public meeting in almost two months.

The announcement comes as many states are seeing a resurgence in cases of Covid 19, as others like Oklahoma and Texas are seeing fresh spikes. 

The briefing will not take place at the White House, but according to the schedule released by the White House, will be at the Department of Health and Human Services. 

Some background: President Trump has tried to declare that the pandemic "over," despite the rising numbers and has instead focused his administration's energy on reopening the economy. 

He has also resumed campaign rallies, despite warnings by health experts on his own task force that the events could be super spreaders of the virus. 

At his Tulsa, Oklahoma rally Saturday, eight members of his advance staff tested positive for the virus, and since then the Secret Service has announced that agents who attended the rally will be quarantining for the next two weeks. Campaign staffers who attended the rally are also quarantining.

8:35 p.m. ET, June 25, 2020

Bill Gates says he talks to Fauci on a regular basis 

From CNN's Melissa Mahtani


Microsoft founder Bill Gates said he talks to Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation's top infectious disease expert, regularly.

"I talk to him regularly, more often than he talks to some other people," Gates told CNN's Anderson Cooper and Dr. Sanjay Gupta during a coronavirus town hall.

"He's fantastic," Gates said of Fauci.

In terms of a timeline, Gates said he's aligned with Fauci on his prediction that there will be a viable vaccine by the end of the year, or early 2021.

Gates explained that there are two characteristics being evaluated in developing a vaccine. Firstly, that the vaccine prevents you from getting sick and secondly, that it prevents you spreading it to others.

On the latter, he warned that "it's not guaranteed that the vaccine will be a perfect transmission blocker."

Despite that, Gates said recent evidence points to the antibody response being "very strong," which suggests about a year of immunity to anyone who gets the disease.

8:30 p.m. ET, June 25, 2020

More than 25,000 people have died from coronavirus in Mexico

From CNN’s Matt Rivers and Taylor Barnes

Mexico’s health ministry reported at least 6,104 new cases of novel coronavirus on Thursday, the second-highest daily case rise reported in the country.

There has now been at least 202,951 cases in the country since the beginning of the pandemic.

The health ministry also reported at least 736 new Covid-19 fatalities – bringing the country’s death toll to at least 25,060.

8:29 p.m. ET, June 25, 2020

New Mexico pauses reopening plans, governor says

From CNN’s Andy Rose

As confirmed coronavirus cases spike in the western United States, the governor of New Mexico says they are putting further economic reopening plans on hold.

“What we’re seeing around us, and what we’re seeing right here in our home state, is a clear indication that we’re not quite ready to go to phase two,” Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said Thursday during a briefing.

While New Mexico’s case load has not gotten as dramatically high as its neighbors, Arizona and Texas, Grisham said there is still too much risk.

“We can manage being flat. Our goal should be to reduce cases,” the governor said.

Grisham said “the last thing anyone wants” is to have to roll back economic progress since businesses began to reopen.

“The virus has not gone anywhere. I think there’s a false sense of security now,” the governor said. “New Mexicans actually have gotten really lax, I think, about wearing masks and taking this seriously.”

8:31 p.m. ET, June 25, 2020

Gates: "Completely false" that more testing means more cases

Microsoft founder Bill Gates dismissed the White House's claim that an increase in case numbers is a direct result of an increase in testing, calling it "completely false."

"It's fair to say, you can find more cases when you do more testing, but the US is experiencing a rebound, even once you factor out the increased testing," Gates said during CNN's coronavirus town hall.

Local officials, he said, have "gotten their act together on testing."

Gates said testing capacity will continue to increase in the fall, and "that's good news."

"But that's not the reason we're seeing these case increases," he said.

"If you take the New York or the New York area out, in fact we're still very much in the thick of things."


8:49 p.m. ET, June 25, 2020

Bill Gates says current coronavirus picture is "more bleak" than expected

From CNN's Melissa Mahtani


Microsoft founder Bill Gates said Thursday that the current coronavirus picture, both globally and in the US, is "more bleak" than he would have expected.

Gates, speaking at CNN coronavirus town hall, attributed the rise in numbers to a lack of testing and contact tracing, as well as a lack of mask wearing.

"The range of behaviors in the US right now, some people being very conservative in what they do, and some people ignoring the epidemic, is huge," Gates said.

"Some people almost feel like it's a political thing which is unfortunate," he added, something he says he didn't expect in America.


8:16 p.m. ET, June 25, 2020

Charleston, South Carolina, approves ordinance requiring face coverings

From CNN's Jamiel Lynch

The Charleston City Council approved an ordinance to require face coverings to reduce the risk of exposure to Covid-19, according to a statement. 

The ordinance will take effect on July 1.

"The ordinance is a fine-only offense and will be enforced primarily via educational efforts by civilian officers with the city’s Livability Department. It will remain in effect for a period of 60 days, unless otherwise terminated," the statement said.

Check out this list of the states requiring people to wear masks when out in public.

8:12 p.m. ET, June 25, 2020

60% of US states are reporting increases in new cases

At least 30 states across the US — 60% — are reporting an increase in new coronavirus cases in the past week, compared to the previous week.

Of those states, 13 are reporting a 50% or greater increase.

New cases are trending down in 11 states, while nine are seeing steady numbers.

Here's a look at where things stand: