August 6 coronavirus news

By Jessie Yeung, Adam Renton, Meg Wagner and Melissa Macaya, CNN

Updated 4:28 p.m. ET, November 23, 2020
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11:16 a.m. ET, August 6, 2020

Covid-19 public health measures may help "blunt" the flu season, Fauci says

From CNN's Amanda Watts

 

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said it’s possible that public health measures across the country – such as mask-wearing, hand-washing and physical distancing – “might really, really blunt the flu season.”

“If you have Covid of any extent, you might have two reasons to have less flu: one, because you're doing the kinds of things of public health – masks, etcetera – and two, it might get bumped out by Covid," he said while speaking during an Alliance for Health Policy webinar today.

“My hope is that both of those will be down,” he added. “Vaccination for flu, public health measures for flu and Covid would have us be in the situation where both the flu season is blunted and we have very little Covid. That's a goal that we should aspire to that I think is possible."

11:09 a.m. ET, August 6, 2020

Pelosi strikes optimistic tone even as stimulus negotiations stall

From CNN's Ali Zaslav 

Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi speaks to members of the press as Senate Minority Leader Sen. Charles Schumer onl August 4 in Washington at the Capitol.
Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi speaks to members of the press as Senate Minority Leader Sen. Charles Schumer onl August 4 in Washington at the Capitol. Alex Wong/Getty Images

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she remains optimistic that despite hard negotiations, “we will” find a solution and come to an agreement on the relief bill. 

“Will we find a solution? We will,” Pelosi said in an interview on CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street” Thursday morning. “Will we have an agreement? We will.”

On President Trump considering extending an eviction moratorium with an executive order, Pelosi said, “He can extend the moratorium and I hope that he does.” 

But she added that she believes you can’t “just have a moratorium,” you also have to have some money for people to compensate to help pay the rent.

CNBC’s Jim Cramer asked Pelosi if Democrats and Republicans could agree to give funds to those most affected, like people who are disenfranchised, and minorities who want to stay in business, as well as minorities who are trying to go to college or have student loans.

She replied: “Perhaps you mistook them for somebody who gives a damn, for what you just described.”

11:00 a.m. ET, August 6, 2020

Schumer accuses GOP of trying to "apply a Band-Aid" to Covid-19 recovery

From CNN's Ian Sloan and Ted Barrett

Senate Minority Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer listens during a news conference in Washington on August 4.
Senate Minority Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer listens during a news conference in Washington on August 4. Alex Wong/Getty Images

As lawmakers continue to struggle towards a new coronavirus stimulus bill, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer pointed at Republican leadership to get serious, saying “President Trump and his aides, and his party in Congress, are not truly awake to what’s happening in this country.”

“We Democrats believe the patient needs a major operation, while Republicans want to apply a Band-Aid,” Schumer said. “And we won’t let them just pass the Band-Aid, go home, and still leave America bleeding.”

Schumer said that although both sides have made some progress this week, there isn’t enough to bring a deal, saying “we are not going to agree to an inadequate bill that doesn’t address the challenges in our country,” Schumer said.

10:59 a.m. ET, August 6, 2020

Fauci to young Americans: "Don't be the weak link in the chain"

From CNN Health’s Amanda Watts

Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, wears a Washington Nationals protective mask during a House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis hearing on July 31, in Washington.
Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, wears a Washington Nationals protective mask during a House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis hearing on July 31, in Washington. Erin Scott/Pool/Getty Images

Dr. Anthony Fauci,  the nation's leading infectious disease expert, said he doesn’t think young people aren’t heeding scientific advice “deliberately and maliciously.” 

During a Thursday webinar with the Alliance for Health Policy, Fauci addressed young people directly:

“You're not in a vacuum. You can be part of the problem of propagating the outbreak, or you could be part of the solution of protecting yourself," he said. “If we want to get those number down, and we want to open up the economy and open up the country, so that you can actually ultimately get back to some form of normality, you are part of the process of getting us there."

Fauci continued: “Don't be the weak link in the chain. Be a very strong part of the chain of ultimately getting us down.”

“That's the message we've got to get to young people,” he said. “Obviously they're not doing anything deliberately and maliciously, but what they're doing is inadvertently – they're propagating the outbreak.”

10:55 a.m. ET, August 6, 2020

Delta says 20% of employees have taken a buyout

From CNN's Pete Muntean 

A Delta Airlines airbus plane is seen at the gate at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport on July 30 in Arlington.
A Delta Airlines airbus plane is seen at the gate at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport on July 30 in Arlington. Daniel Slim/AFP/Getty Images

Delta Air Lines now says one in five workers have voluntarily left the company as it continues to be clobbered by the coronavirus pandemic.

“The departure of 20 percent of our workforce was a difficult but necessary step towards Delta’s transformation into a smaller, more nimble airline,” Delta CEO Ed Bastian said in a new memo to employees.

In July, the airline said it could avoid furloughs if enough employees took voluntary early separation packages. 

Restrictions on a federal bailout have kept airlines from shedding employees until Oct. 1.

Other major airlines, such as American and United, have sent notices of possible furloughs to thousands of workers.

Delta’s Bastian says the airline was burning $27 million in cash each day in June.

“We can’t count on a vaccine being widely available in the near future,” said Bastian. “With this in mind, we continue to plan for a long and somewhat choppy recovery.”

10:51 a.m. ET, August 6, 2020

Fauci hopes Covid-19 can be controlled "in a way that it is not a pandemic or an epidemic threat"

From CNN Health’s Amanda Watts

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said “we hope as a pandemic threat, that we are really on the cusp of seeing the end of it – as we do public health measures and a vaccine.”

“You may have some lingering of infection around that might come back in a seasonal way, but hopefully with the technologies and the vaccines and getting much, much better in our public health measures, that we'll be able to control it in a way that it is not a pandemic or an epidemic threat," Fauci continued, speaking during an Alliance for Health Policy webinar on Thursday.

Fauci added that much of the responsibility lies in the hands of the population: “That is up to us, as a society.”

“If we do the fundamental things that we've been talking about for so long — masks, physical separation, avoiding crowds, outdoor things better than indoor — you can get the level down low enough that you can then control it much better with or without a vaccine,” he said.

10:04 a.m. ET, August 6, 2020

Senate won't adjourn for August recess today as stimulus talks continue, McConnell says

From CNN's Ted Barrett and Manu Raju

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell waits for the subway to the Hart Senate Office building in Washington on August 5.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell waits for the subway to the Hart Senate Office building in Washington on August 5. Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced on the Senate floor that he won’t adjourn the Senate for the August recess today, as had been previously scheduled, as negotiations over the next Covid-19 stimulus package limp forward. 

However, he said senators can return home and will be given 24 hours notice to return for a vote on a deal if it is reached. 

McConnell said he would stay in Washington, DC, as the talks continue. But, the GOP Senate leader added he won’t wait forever and will adjourn for August if Democrats make clear they won’t cut a deal.

“But the Senate won’t adjourn for August unless and until the Democrats demonstrate that will never let an agreement materialize. A lot of Americans’ hopes, a lot of Americans’ lives are riding on the Democrats’ endless talk. I hope they are not disappointed," McConnell said.
10:03 a.m. ET, August 6, 2020

GOP Senate leader says party's stimulus plan is "not too late"

From CNN's Ali Zaslav 

Pressed if he waited too long to put out a GOP relief proposal, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said, "not too late. This is the perfect time to take a look at it."

McConnell was asked the question in an interview on CNBC’s Squawk Box. Remember: Democrats released their plan in May, and there is now urgency to pass a stimulus bill as enhanced jobless benefits lapsed last week.

McConnell has repeatedly defended his decision to wait until July to release the Republican’s next relief plan arguing, “we had no idea” what the economy would look like in the summer months. 

Asked the chances of reaching a stimulus deal in the next 24 hours, the Kentucky Republican told CNBC he would not “speculate about the timing” but thinks a deal would be reached in the “near future.”

“Exactly when that deal comes together I can’t tell you, but I think it will at some point in the near future,” he said.

10:01 a.m. ET, August 6, 2020

"I wish we had done better" on testing, Fauci says

From CNN's Health Gisela Crespo

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, says he wishes testing for Covid-19 in the country had worked out better.

Speaking during an interview on the POLITICO Pulse Check podcast published Thursday, Fauci said – when asked about people waiting to get a test result back five or seven days later – that it's been "very difficult" to defend the government's efforts on testing. 

"It is very difficult. It's been this way from the very beginning of the issue – of defending things that have to do with testing – when you're given an example like you just gave me about waiting five to seven days. You know, I would be noncredible, and I wouldn't be true to myself, if I say oh that's okay. It's not okay – period. And we need to do better. And I wish we had done better," Fauci told POLITICO's Dan Diamond. 

Fauci explained the delay is due to the surge in cases, but said that according to a conversation with Adm. Brett Giroir, a member of the White House coronavirus task force overseeing Covid-19 testing, most tests are coming back within 24 to 48 hours.

"We're talking about hopefully getting, you know, many, many millions of more tests that can be done rapidly within the next month or so. ... I can't guarantee that, because that's not what I do. So, the people who are responsible for that are telling us that we're going to get better and better as the months go by," Fauci said.