October 11 coronavirus news

By Helen Regan, Jenni Marsh and Tara John, CNN

Updated 12:00 a.m. ET, October 12, 2020
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12:51 p.m. ET, October 11, 2020

Fourth White House journalist with preliminary positive test has tested negative for Covid-19 with PCR test

From CNN's Jason Hoffman

The White House Correspondents’ Association said the fourth journalist who received a preliminary positive Covid-19 result after a rapid test has ultimately tested negative after taking the more accurate PCR test.

“The PCR test for this individual came back negative for Covid-19,” the organization said in a letter to its members.

 Previously, three journalists who cover the President recently tested positive for the virus.


12:45 p.m. ET, October 11, 2020

Trump officials send letter to lawmakers asking to use left over Paycheck Protection Program money

From CNN’s Phil Mattingly

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, left, and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows speak to the press on August 7 at the Capitol in Washington, DC.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, left, and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows speak to the press on August 7 at the Capitol in Washington, DC. Alex Wong/Getty Images

Treasury Sec. Steven Mnuchin and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, in a nod to the struggles in reaching a broad stimulus deal, sent a letter to lawmakers asking for passage of a bill that allows the Trump administration to utilize the $134 billion in unused Paycheck Protection Program funds as talks continue.

“The all or nothing approach is an unacceptable response to the American people,” the pair wrote.

Democratic leaders have rejected all piecemeal efforts up to this point. 

Read the letter:

11:41 a.m. ET, October 11, 2020

UK records more than 12,000 new Covid-19 cases

From CNN's Schams Elwazer

The United Kingdom reported 12,872 new coronavirus cases on Sunday, compared to more than 15,000 the previous day, according to the government’s Covid-19 dashboard.

That brings the total number of cases to 603,716.

Another 65 people have died from the virus, bringing to 42,825 the number of people who died within 28 days of receiving a positive test result. 

However the total number of people with Covid-19 on their death certificate is 57,347.

On Monday, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to announce new coronavirus restrictions in England in an effort to bring the infection rate under control.

11:31 a.m. ET, October 11, 2020

Pelosi: "Until these serious issues are resolved, we remain at an impasse" on the stimulus

From CNN's Manu Raju

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi holds a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, DC, on October 8.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi holds a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, DC, on October 8. Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg/Getty Images

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a letter to her colleagues about stimulus negotiations, “Until these serious issues are resolved, we remain at an impasse.”

She also said, “it is hard to understand who is shaping their approach, which to date has been a miserable and deadly failure.”

Some context: Pelosi and Senate Republicans on Saturday balked at President Trump's roughly $1.8 trillion stimulus proposal, making it all but certain Congress won't pass an economic relief package before election day.

On Saturday, Pelosi called the counteroffer Trump made Friday "insufficient" and "amounted to one step forward, two steps back" in negotiations, underscoring that there are several major outstanding policy issues to work out.

"At this point, we still have disagreement on many priorities, and Democrats are awaiting language from the Administration on several provisions as the negotiations on the overall funding amount continue," Pelosi wrote in a letter Saturday to House Democrats.

Pelosi's cool reception to the $1.8 trillion offer from Trump — the administration's highest offer thus far in the months-long talks — comes as Republicans have made clear to their respective leaders they want no part of a deal this big, which Senate Leader Mitch McConnell and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy have communicated to the White House.

11:13 a.m. ET, October 11, 2020

Arkansas governor supports Trump's rallies but says mass gatherings must be socially distanced 

From CNN's Melissa Alonso 

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson told CNN that he hopes both presidential candidates can set an example to help keep the spread of coronavirus down as winter approaches. 

When asked about the lack of mitigation efforts in place at President Trump's events and rallies, the governor responded: "They offer masks, they do screening whenever they come to the rallies, certainly we want to have an engagement in the presidential campaign this year." 

Hutchinson added that "there should not be any mass gathering without social distancing" or wear a mask "if you're going to sit next to somebody."  

"A large part of it is simply the nature of the virus and if you don't take the right protections it's going to spread," Hutchinson said about the rising cases in his state. 



11:26 a.m. ET, October 11, 2020

President Trump defends Saturday's White House event

From CNN's Sarah Westwood and Maggie Fox

President Donald Trump speaks to supporters at the White House on October 10.
President Donald Trump speaks to supporters at the White House on October 10. Alex Brandon/AP

President Trump claimed, without evidence, that he is “immune” from Covid-19 following his apparent recovery from the virus, and he defended his decision to deliver a speech to a crowd at the White House on Saturday less than a week after leaving the hospital. 

“It seems like I’m immune,” Trump said on Fox.

Trump said he believes he will be immune for “maybe a long time, maybe a short time, could be a lifetime,” noting it’s unclear how much immunity previously infected individuals can expect after recovering.

Some context: There is no evidence that people are immune if they have been infected once and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention specifically cautions people not to assume they are immune.

Trump said his medical team informed him he was “free” of Covid-19 before he gave his speech on Saturday.

“They said totally free of spreading, there’s no spread,” he said. “I was on a balcony. The closest person was probably a couple of hundred feet away, and they were down on the grass.”

“Even yesterday, I knew I was free,” the President added. 

Trump said he is “in very good shape” to move forward. He is scheduled to travel to Florida on Monday for a campaign rally.



11:05 a.m. ET, October 11, 2020

UK national lockdown "a possibility," government advisor says

From Sharon Braithwaite in London

A second national lockdown is a "possibility" in England which has reached a “rather precarious point” amid a sharp rise in coronavirus infections, a leading expert and government adviser said Sunday.

Peter Horby – who advises the government on the threat posed by respiratory viruses — told the BBC that local hospitals in the worst-affected areas in the north of England are beginning to feel the pressure of a possible second wave. 

“We have a doubling time of about eight to 15 days so it is not long before those ICU beds could be full and we could be in a really difficult situation. So I am afraid we are going to have to make some very difficult choices and act very quickly," he said.

"The numbers are not looking good at all,” Horby added.

“We've got an increase in cases, an increase in hospitalizations," he said, adding that the UK is also starting to see the number of deaths increase.

On a positive note, Horby said that – compared to the first wave of Covid-19 infections — the UK now has a "much better testing and tracing capabilities, we have a much better understanding of the disease, and what's great to see is that it appears that the risk of death in hospitalized patients is coming down."

The comments by the Chair of the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG) came ahead of Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s expected announcement Monday of new coronavirus restrictions in England.

Johnson plans to hold a telephone conference with cabinet members on Sunday as he prepares to bring in a new three-tier coronavirus restrictions regime, the UK’s PA Media reported.

10:10 a.m. ET, October 11, 2020

White House economic adviser says Mnuchin "may" go above $2.2 trillion in stimulus offer

From CNN's Alison Main

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, center, leaves the Capitol in Washington, DC, after meetings on September 30.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, center, leaves the Capitol in Washington, DC, after meetings on September 30. Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP

White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said on Sunday that he doesn't think the prospect on another round of coronavirus relief is dead "at all" and that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin "may" offer a proposal priced higher than Speaker Nancy Pelosi's most recent offer of $2.2 trillion.

"Secretary Mnuchin is up to 1.8 trillion. So the bid and the offer is narrowing somewhat between the two sides. President Trump actually has always said — I mean, I've heard him say it in the oval — as far as the key elements are concerned, the checks, the unemployment assistance, the small business assistance, we've got to help airlines out, he would go further. He's always said that," Kudlow said.

Kudlow said he spoke with Mnuchin last night on the matter. He noted that the Republican asked for targeted relief measures, including more federal unemployment assistance and another round of PPP loans and direct stimulus checks to individuals.

"They have bipartisan support. We could do it as standalone bills or an omnibus bill or whatever. But I do not understand the intransigence from my Democratic friends," Kudlow said, casting the blame on Democrats, even though many Senate Republicans have been resistant to a deal with a high price tag.

More context: On Saturday, Senate Republicans blasted a $1.8 trillion offer from the White House on a call with Mnuchin and White House chief of staff Mark Meadows. While the sentiment was that talks with Pelosi should continue, it was clear that the White House plan had virtually no chance of passing the Senate, per multiple sources.

Asked about the Republican pushback, Kudlow demurred, saying "I don't know who we have lost" and noting the previous Republican efforts on a pared-down bill.

"Let's see what happens. I'm not negotiating today," Kudlow said.

This also comes after President Trump did an about-face on the negotiations this week, first, unilaterally putting a stop to the talks ahead of the election and then signing off on a $1.8 trillion proposal by Friday.

Kudlow reiterated his belief that economic recovery is not dependent on the passage of another stimulus bill. 

9:24 a.m. ET, October 11, 2020

NFL postpones Broncos-Patriots game after positive Covid-19 test

From CNN's Homero DeLaFuente

The National Football League has announced that the game between the Broncos-Patriots scheduled for Oct. 12 has been postponed after the Patriots reported a positive Covid-19 test on Sunday.

Both teams will now have a week five bye week. The league has not announced when the game will be played.  

Here's the NFL's full statement:

"The Denver Broncos at New England Patriots game scheduled for Monday, October 12 at 5:00 p.m. ET has been postponed. Details on a new game date and time will be announced shortly. Both teams will now have a Week 5 bye.
This decision was made to ensure the health and safety of players, coaches and game day personnel and in consultation with medical experts."