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tv   The Lead With Jake Tapper  CNN  July 29, 2021 2:00pm-3:00pm PDT

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department who they should prosecute, and i would not tell the health industry that -- the government health entities what they should say and do, but my expectation is they're going to reach that conclusion in the early fall. that you think -- thank you very much. >> mr. president you said if you were fully vaccinated you no longer knead to wear a mask, and it seems -- >> no i didn't say -- fully vaccinated in an area where you do not have -- let me clarify. >> in may you made it sound like a vaccine was the ticket to losing masks forever. >> that is true at the time because i thought there were people who were going to understand that getting vaccinated -- and what happened was the new variant came along, they didn't get vaccinated, it was spread more rapidly, and people -- more people were getting sick.
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>> another -- mr. president -- >> how is the first lady, sir? >> you're going to find out in a minute. >> welcome to "the lead," i'm jake tapper. you've been listening to president biden speaking about the urgent need for more americans to get vaccinated against the coronavirus. the president announced some new requirements for all federal employees and federal contractors. he also laid out new incentives to get more people vaccinated including asking states to give $100 to every newly vaccinated person and reimbursements for companies who give their employees paid time off to get their shots. president biden also addressed the new mask guidance from the centers for disease control and prevention and the mask mandates popping back up in cities across the country. let's get straight to cnn's jeff zeleny right now live at the white house. jeff, the white house obviously is worried about the trajectory that the u.s. is on with the delta variant, and too many
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americans still refusing to get vaccinated. >> reporter: no question about it. what we just heard there was a president pleading with his country to change their behavior and try and stop this rising pandemic. we have not heard president biden speak with this level of concern in his voice, really for several months. also, a tacit acknowledgment, which of course we all know that progress on this has essentially been frozen, has been halted in place. for the last month, many people here at the white house have been trying to down play the fact that progress had been halted. this was a president essentially throwing that out the window and saying, look, america is not making the progress it needs to and really imploring and calling upon all americans the unvaccinated as well as the vaccinated to step forward and try and make a course correction here talking about the economy, talking about, you know, how it's going to impact schools and other matters. jake, this is a big inflection point in this fight against covid-19. the biden administration has made this their top priority to
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fight this pandemic, and for six months or so, it was going along pretty well. now that progress has halted and we do not know what is going to be coming next. but you saw him walking into the east room there with a mask. there are mask requirements happening across the country, here in washington, d.c., as well. specifically they are trying to really jump start something in the private sector by doing what he can do to require federal workers to give aften acknowledgment of their vaccination status, which before today they were not allowed too. if they don't get vaccinated submit to twice weekly testing, not travel for work, social distance. the dod, the department of defense, the president authorizing his secretary of defense to look into this, that would send a message as well getting people in the military vaccinated. i think this is one of the biggest speeches the president has given on covid in weeks if
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not months. >> jeff zeleny at the white house. let's discuss two main issues for us to talk about. one of them is the vaccine, and one of them is masking the let's start with the vaccine for a second. it was remarkable because we have talked about this for months now, i have said, others have said, president trump gets credit for things that happened while under his administration, gets blamed for things that happened poorly. operation warp speed happened under his administration. it is a miracle of modern science what the scientists delivered there, both those who got the funds directly from the administration like moderna and those who were encouraged to through distribution promises and funding, like pfizer. the president, came as close to crediting trump at least in part as i have ever heard him say, the vaccine was authorized and approved under a republican administration. he also went on to praise republican senate leader mitch mcconnell and alabama governor kay ivey who's also a republican. will that make a difference? >> i don't know that that will make a difference, but he's trying to make the point that,
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look, this is not just a democrat thing. this is not something that he is trying to push on the american people that this is something that happened under -- in vaccine was developed under former president trump and hoping that his base will latch onto that. that just hasn't happened yet, and i don't think that biden making that statement in and of itself will be enough because the people who are concerned about biden are not listening to what he has to say, which has been the problem all along for this administration. >> would it help, alice, if instead of trying to undermine democracy and continue to cast aspersions about elections in the united states, president trump very aggressively went on a tour and, yes, he has talked about how he's vaccinated, but he has not -- he has tens of millions of dollars in his campaign account for all this stop the steal nonsense. he could e mmerge as a hero on this issue. he could say i need trump supporters vaccination rates to
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go up. let's do it people, would that help? >> that would help tremendously, but that will no t happen unfortunately. i'm glad to see that president biden praised the previous administration for getting the vaccines out there and helping to get them approved. the former president missed a tremendous opportunity when he got the shot, the king of o optics. to have staged a big photo op, shown the american people what it's like to get the shot and how important it is. unfortunately he missed that opportunity and has gone on to make this a political issue, and that's really unfortunate because it's not. as president biden said, this is not a red state or a blue state issue. this is a life and death issue. but i will say with this -- what he said today was really important, from a communications standpoint rktswhen you're issua broad mandate, you tell people what you need to do, how you're going to help them and you tell them why it's important. he was able to do that, but the biggest hurdle aside from that is taking the politics out of
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this and putting health care on the front burner. >> let's also talk about the masking. to be frank, it's confusing. it's confusing. you heard president biden say some thins that you found also not as clear as they could have been. >> no, and i don't think it was clear when the cdc director announced it the other day. we should note that they changed the mask guidance for fully vaccinated people and tied it to the number of cases where you live. president biden pointed that out, but he also was saying that breakthrough cases are rare for fully vaccinated people, and if you do get infected, it lo's liy to be a mild case. the cdc said they were changing this guidance because they have found evidence that people who are fully vaccinated can spread the virus. so they seem to be saying this is an area of concern that we're looking at, and that's part of the reason -- >> not getting sick if you're vaccinated, but spreading the virus if you're vaccinated. >> but spreading it. but still talking about they were saying maybe it's not so rare. we're looking at how often fully vaccinated people are getting it. that's why we're recommending this. i think the other confusion was that he was tying wearing a mask to vaccination rates in your area. that is not what the cdc did the
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other day. they tied it to the number of cases in your area, not hospitalizations, not deaths, the number of cases in your area. in d.c. starting on saturday we're going to have to be wearing a mask when we're inside even if you're fully vaccinated. >> biden seemed to suggest in new castle, delaware, where his home is the vaccination rates are high and that's why he didn't have to wear a mask there. is that accurate? >> that's not the case. the reason he did not have to wear a mask when he went there the other day is because they had a moderate level of transmission, not substantial or high. which are the two levels. i don't think most people know which area they live in. it changes as they update the guidance. it raises a lot of questions. there at the end you saw the president grow quite animated. he was asked about what he did say not that long ago, if you have been vaccinated, you don't have to wear a mask. he was saying what we've heard from a lot of health officials, which is they are working on a rolling basis with changing science and data and evidence here, and clearly the level of concern is real about the delta variant. he said cases are going to go up. we have not heard that from him
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in a long time. >> as a communications -- nobody doubts -- i don't doubt that the people at the cdc and president biden want americans to get vaccinated so that people don't get sick. as communications matter, where could they improve? >> i don't think this is a communications problem for them. it turns out, we used to say we're going to avoid stuff like the plague. that's not really a thing, right? people don't really -- they're not willing to avoid the plague. you know, so instead what we're now finding is that we're at war with a virus that has done more damage to america than any terrorist attack has ever cdone killed more people, shut down our economy. so we have got to do whatever it takes to break the back of it. what i think is happening here by doing the mandate, not only are they going to get huge populations of people vaccinated or encourage them to get vaccinated, they're also making people who are call them the lax vaksers, they're the ones who are not really against vaccination, they just haven't gotten around to it yet. i think you're starting it see
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those people decide to get in the game and get that vaccination. >> dr. peter hotez is with us from texas. president biden said several times, quote, we're following the science. but the cdc has yet to divulge the studies it's looking at, the data it has to explain and justify its most recent masking guidance. should they? >> yeah, they should, and it is very confusing. i mean, i understand it, but i have an m.d. and a ph.d. and having thinking about coronavirus vaccines for more than a decade. and it goes like this. we know that these vaccines, even against the delta variant still protect against serious illness and symptomatic illness. they're holding up really well. the issue is there's preliminary data, and it's only preliminary, it hasn't been published. it comes out in various preprint forms that the amount of virus in breakthrough cases in those rare breakthrough cases is quite high, so people are still
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shedding a lot of virus if they get delta and they're vaccinated as opposed to previously with the earlier lineages, it was stopping both symptomatic serious illness and asymptomatic transmission. and that second performance feature may be going goaway wit the delta variant, unless we can restore it with a third immunization, which is also being under consideration. so what's happening is we're trying to communicate complex scientific concepts and trying to simplify it so people can understand it. it's tough to do. you know, if you give me 10, 15 minutes to explain it, i think everyone will understand it, but it's hard to get that kind of time. and conveying complex scientific concepts has its challenges. i think the cdc is following the science. i think they will come out with the published information, but remember, they're dealing with a lot of preliminary things as well. but what it really comes down to, jake, is this, we're all
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worried, and we're worried because delta is accelerating and something else is about to happen and that is school is about to open, especially in the south where they opened up schools early, and this is where transmission is accelerating. so we're worried this is going to blow the whole thing open and trying to keep a lid on it by doing everything humanly possible to encourage people to vaccinate. i thought the president gave an excellent speech, basically what he said is anything within his jurisdiction under the auspices of the federal government he's going to implement in order to get people vaccinated just to keep a lid on it, and i think he made that point pretty clear. >> dr. hotez, thank you so much, and thanks to everyone here. it's not just president biden. it's also businesses from google to netflix to morgan stanley, a number of major corporations are now mandating all of their employees have to be vaccinated. i want to bring in richard quest, the editor at large for cnn business. good to see you biden is giving federal employees a choice
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basically, get vaccinated or get weekly negative covid tests. these businesses, however, are saying, no, no, you have to get vaccinated before you come back to the office. is that even legal in the united states? >> it's a very fine point, jake. if you read up on it, basically providing you're not breaking the americans against disabilities act and you're not dealing with the civil rights act and you've managed to follow all the necessary equal employment legislation, then, yes, it probably is legal depending on the reason why somebody says whether it's a religious reason or whether it's a medical reason. but it's not clear, however, companies are going forth anyway because they've had enough. they are all looking forward to a september coming back into the office. they are deeply worried, you know, the good doctor just before me talks about how worried everybody is. companies are worried about filling big buildings like here at hudson yards with thousands of people and somebody not being
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vaccinated and the whole thing goes over the edge. >> a lot of these corporate vaccine requirements came along quickly and on masks this week. did something change? was there a directive? how'd that happen? >> delta. delta and the realization that things are getting worse and the fact we're in the summer, you've got the south with the schools reopening. you've got this date in september when more and more companies are saying we want you back in the office, and some of the big banks here in new york have made it clear, as you know, jake, they've said we're not messing around with hybrid this or hybrid that. you're back in the office. well, you can only say that if you basically demand everybody to be vaccinated because simply having a testing requirement or a mask requirement per se is not going to give that same element of security. >> all right, richard quest. thanks so much. coming up next, a deal on capitol hill. can this infrastructure agreement make it to the finish line? i'll talk to the number two house democrat next. plus, suni lee steps up and
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control feels good. chase. make more of what's yours. and we're back with our national lead, president biden moments ago announcing federal workers and federal contractors must all get vaccinated or undergo regular testing indicating they do not have covid. the biden administration is racing to switch tactics as coronavirus case loads skyrocket across the country along with the delta variant. joining me live to discuss is the house majority leader democrat steny hoyer of maryland. mr. majority leader, let me ask you a question. so the federal government is now going to be mandated to have vaccines or weekly covid tests.
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should congress do the same for all members of congress and staff? >> well, i think we certainly have urged all members of congress and all staff to be vaccinated. i think we're well over 70%, so that we have reached a percentage that' but should we everybody to have one? yes. should we require everyone to have one or as the president has done alternatively be tested or certainly wear a mask and assert that they are not feeling as if they may have covid, i think the answer to that is yes. we need to get people vaccinated in this country, and we need to urge everybody to be vaccinated, and very frankly, every leader, republican or democrat, this has nothing to do with politics, everything to do with health and life in our country, and it just seems to me inconceivable that when you see 98 plus percent of
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the people who are getting really sick or getting the delta variant are unvaccinated, they are getting the variant and have been vaccinated, it is a minimal illness. it is unfathomable that people don't understand get vaccinated. >> i just want to make sure i understand you here, we believe based on comments that kevin mccarthy made yesterday that about 65 congressional republicans are not vaccinated. 65. you're saying that you think that all 65 should either be required to be vaccinated or take weekly covid tests to indicate that they do not have covid as well as anybody else who works in the capitol who is not vaccinated? >> i think the answer to that and the only reason i hesitate, these are elected officials. they're elected to represent their constituencies, so it's a little more complicated in my opinion, but yes, for the safety
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of all the members of congress and for the operations of the congress of the united states, we want to have a healthy congress. every member ought to be vaccinated or in the alternative, certainly we're requiring now every member to wear a mask, which is mandatory on the house floor or you get a fine. and i think in addition to that if people -- if the 65 -- that's not my figure, it's kevin mccarthy's figure. if that's the figure, then they ought to have to be tested on a relatively regular basis to make sure they're not bringing virus into the chamber and shouldn't be bringing virus, frankly, into their offices or into the office complex. >> president biden gave a nod to the trump administration's operation warp speed. he praised republican governor kay ivey, he praised mitch mcconnell. that seems to be no accident. >> well, i'm sure it wasn't an accident when he did that. i'm sure he did it consciously,
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and i think what he wanted to say is, honestly, look, this is not a political issue. some republicans have done very good work clearly warp speed did get us to a place in some respects and of course the extraordinary intellect and resources of the united states of america were brought to bear in a very focused way and accomplished something in the quickest time i think in history to develop this kind of a vaccine that quickly and that effortively. so yes, i think this is not a partisan issue. we ought to give credit to republicans, democrats, the medical community, the nurses, the media who's made it very clear that vaccinations work by simply giving the figures to americans. and i think senator -- senator i said, but president biden clearly has had a background of bipartisan involvement and accomplishment, and he is very
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exited to that. he believes that's the best interests of the country, and he believes it's the best way to get things done. we share that view. >> so we saw a breakthrough on infrastructure last night, the bipartisan package in the senate. democrats and republicans working together. house progressive alexandria ocasio-cortez, democrat of new york is criticizing negotiators in her view for, quote, choosing to exclude members of color from negotiations and calling that a bipartisan accomplishment. i guess her general argument is a bunch of middle aged white people cannot be representative of what the entire country wants and the democratic party failed to include non-whites in the negotiations, thus the bill was not what she wanted it to be. what's your response to that? >> well, i think the important thing is what is the substance of the bill. i take her point. it's a good point. we believe very strongly in diversity and inclusion in the democratic party and certainly in the house of representatives
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you see that all the time. having said that, it's the product that ultimately we will make a judgment on when we vote. i was pleased to see the senate get 67 votes to proceed on the infrastructure bill, the infrastructure bill has a lot of very good in it. as you know, we passed the invest in america act that was brought to the floor. a very good bill that not only had real investment in infrastructure, but also real investment in climate and meeting the climate change that is an existential threat to our country and to the community. so we believe there are other things that could have been, should have been in that bill, but we think the bill that the senate has adopted has a lot of very good things in it. >> you think that, sir, but chairman defazio called the bill, quote, crap. >> well, i wouldn't characterize it as that. i don't think in a more ref
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reflective mood that he would say that. there's a lot of very good good solid investment that's included in the senate bill, and we'll have to make a judgment, is it enough? and very frankly, jake, as you know, i'm an old-timer. i've been here for some period of time. i think it is very sad that we do not go to conference with our bill, the invest in america act, their bill, which ise process of being put on paper, if they pass it as i hope they will, what we really ought to do is go to conference. now, whether we'll do that or not, as you know, unfortunately in the senate, take 60 votes to pass such a bill, it takes 60 votes to even go to conference, which i think undermines our democracy, but that's another issue. >> that's another issue for another day. >> yeah, all right. >> another issue for another day. and if they pass the bill, woel have to decide what actions we ought to take. >> house majority leader steny
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hoyer, democrat of maryland, thank you so much for your time, really appreciate it. >> you bet. the urgent plea for people who put off getting the vaccine only to end up in the hospital with the virus. stay with us. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ feeling sluggish or weighed down? it could be a sign that your digestive system isn't working at it's best taking metamucil everyday can help.
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why they put off getting a shot until it was tragically too late. >> amy matson struggles to breathe. >> what does it feel like to have covid? >> exhausting, extremely frustrating. tiring. and the fact that i am here now, i am furious with myself. >> why? >> because i was not vaccinated. >> not anti-vaccine, she says she just didn't get around to it. the 44-year-old is now one of dozens of covid-19 patients in baton rouge's our lady of the lake regional medical center. her oxygen low, her doctor says she might need a ventilator. >> just don't want anyone else winding up like me, especially when the vaccine is so easy to get now. >> the delta variant now prevalent in bayou state, not only is it enormously
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infectious. >> the delta variant is far more contagious, right, but that viral load doesn't just mean that i'm going to spread it to more people, it also means when i inhale somebody else's breath, i am getting a massive amount of virus. >> it is spreading everywhere in cities and rural areas. >> there's nowhere safe. if you're interacting in this community, you should be vaccinated and you should have a mask on because we are inundated with covid. >> ronny smith, 47 says he thinks he got it from a friend outdoors, outdoors at a barbecue. he was planning to get the vaccine when covid-19 got him. >> about two days after the event it just like -- i went down on the floor and i couldn't get up. >> nurses here say they've watched the number of critically ill patients grow rapidly, some anti-vaccination patients still in denial covid-19 is real. >> some people insist that we're lying to them about their covid
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positive diagnosis. >> even sick people? >> even sick people. >> who need oxygen who might be on their way to death. >> yes. >> are still denying they have covid? >> yes, i have patients that deny that they have covid all the way up until intubation. >> what do they think they have? >> they think that they have a cold. >> carson baker only 21 has a kidney condition. her doctor has advised against getting vaccinated for now. she thinks she picked up the coronavirus while in a screened in porch across the room from someone else who had it. >> what does that tell you about how easy it is to pick this variant up? >> it just kind of sucks because people like myself with an autoimmune disease, you can't go anywhere now because everybody's getting sick, and it just doesn't matter what you do. >> laurie douglas has been in nursing for 35 years. the last year her hardest. frustration with sickness, death, and the unvaccinated at boiling point. >> sometimes praying isn't enough and yell at jesus if i
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need to. it's head shaking, teeth grinding knees tight standing up just wanting to scream from the hill tops frustrating. >> miguel marquez, cnn baton rouge, louisiana. >> our thanks to miguel for that piece. coming up, the rush to get them out of afghanistan before the taliban get to them first, the effort to help the afghans who helped the united states. that's next. [sfx: radio being tuned] welcome to allstate. ♪ [band plays] ♪ a place where everyone lives life well-protected. ♪ and even when things go a bit wrong, we've got your back. here, things work the way you wish they would. and better protection costs a whole lot less. you're in good hands with allstate. click or call for a lower auto rate today. you need an ecolab scientific clean here.
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salonpas contains the most prescribed topical pain relief ingredient. it's clinically proven, reduces inflammation and comes in original prescription strength. salonpas. it's good medicine. in our world lead today, the biden administration says the first group of afghan interpreters and other allies from that war will begin arriving in the u.s., quote, very, very soon. some afghans who helped the united states during america's longest war will head to fort lee, virginia, where they finally will be out of arm's reach of the taliban who have been threatening to kill them and their families. but even after this group
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arrives, thousands more afghans and their families are still waiting in the wings and making heartbreaking pleas such as this one. >> this was so difficult for me that i'm living in here, they'll kill me, sir. please. i don't know what to do. i don't know with whom i should talk. >> cnn's kiley atwood follows the harrowing journey. >> i'm counting down my end of life. >> reporter: every day that the hal taliban control surges in afghanistan, the situation grows more deadly for afghan interpreters who are trying to flee the country after working alongside u.s. troops and diplomats. three interpreters who have applied for special immigrant visas to the united states or sivs spoke to cnn and described just how urgently they must get out of the country because after years of putting their lives on the line next to u.s. soldiers, the taliban are hunting them
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down. >> need to get out of the country. they are looking after us. >> our future will be dark. they're going to cut our heads, too. >> reporter: he's referring to a recent report of the taliban beheading aftghans who worked alongside u.s. troops. these afghans fear for theirs families as well as themselves. cnn is concealing their identities to keep them safe, one of them, nayob is particularly concerned about what will happen to his daughters if the taliban take over. >> they'll destroy the schools and they'll prevent my girls to go to school. >> reporter: all three men we spoke with have faced terrifying threats. one of them ramish explained what happened to him earlier this month when the taliban knocked on his door. >> my family hide me and told them rammish was gone somewhere. then they search our house and i must hide inside the oven. they burned my house, and
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nothing, all our materials burned by them. >> they burned your house? >> yeah. they burned my house. >> reporter: after that, ramish snuck out of his hometown in the middle of the night embarking on a dangerous journey to kabul where the taliban are not in control. army captain payne worked with ramish in afghanistan and encouraged him to flee to kabul under the cloak of darkness. >> to me it's the comrade in arms, and indelible duty to not betray them. you put these people on a tier with your own family. >> payne says the united states could not have done the job on the ground without the interpreters by their side. he feels angry thinking about the ones who may not make it out. >> to allow and fully know all of these people signing up for this promise to come literally to the promised land and to just let it go is a betrayal to those
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people. >> about 20,000 afghans have applied for sivs, 700 of them will fly into the united states in the coming weeks and wait at a u.s. military base while their visas are finalized. yet, the total processing time can take years. president biden has promised. >> we will stand with you just as you stood with us. >> reporter: but the united states government has not yet laid out a comprehensive plan to get these afghans out of the country before the complete u.s. troop withdrawal next month. due to the urgent and vast nature of this challenge, many individuals like payne have taken it upon themselves to contribute. a former afghan interpreter living in virginia set up a nonprofit to help sivs based on his own experience. >> when i came here at the airport, i realized that the government is not taking care of us and i was on my own.
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and from that time i thought that i have to build something to help these sivs when they're coming to the united states and they don't know anybody. >> reporter: earlier this month he waited at the airport to welcome an afghan siv recipient ask p his family to the united states. janis's nonprofit paid for their flights. it's an emotional and hopeful scene, but a glance at his phone offers a reality check. hundreds of messages, all afghans pleading with him to help them get out. jake, each of these afghan siv applicants that i spoke with has children. one of them has five children. i tell you that to underscore the fact that it's not just these 20,000 applicants who are trying to get to the united states, it's also their families who are trying to get here because they feel their lives are in jeopardy. jake. >> cthank you for that importan report. the biden administration finally is laying out its strategy for immigration from central america, what's in the
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strategy? that's next. (piano playing) here we go. ♪ [john legend's i can see clearly now] ♪ ♪ ♪ make your reunion happen with vrbo. your together awaits. vrbo
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nearly two months after vice president harris, the biden administration is now out with a new plan to ease the crisis at the u.s. border. some of the broad strokes include tackling corruption and economic security in those central american countries. i want to bring in precilla alvarez. >> reporter: yeah. the pillars laid out actually
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emulate the february executive order which laid out the strategy for central america. here is what experts are pointing to. they say this strategy is also focussing on pathways to legal migration. that indicates they know people will migrate from the region. how so not having to take that to the u.s. border. that is something they're pointing to. again, we're waiting for more details. >> what are you learning about plans by the administration to push back on this new executive order out of texas? >> the justice department is threatening legal action. this is the second time the administration has had to send a letter to the texas governor saying that his orders are going a step too far. in this case, this is an order determining the transportation of migrants. they were concerned about the way it could affect their operations. now the justice department is stepping in. they are calling it both dangerous and unlawful in a letter and threatening to go to court if they have to. >> thanks so much. coming up next, a new champion.
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suni lee wins gymnastic gold. we will talk to a gymnast who won that same event next. stay with us. d before we board... and you have thinkorswim mobile- -so i can finish analyzing the risk on this position. you two are all set. choose the app that fits your investing style. ♪ you need an ecolab scientific clean here. and you need it here. and here. and here. which is why the scientific expertise that helps operating rooms stay clean is now helping the places you go every day too. seek a commitment to clean. look for the ecolab science certified seal.
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our sports lead, team us a's suni lee won the gold while simone biles cheered her on from the sidelines. she is the fifth american woman to win that title, a streak started by my guest now, who won the gold in the all-around at 16 years old in the 2004 olympics. she's now a motivational speaker and joins us now. what is suni lee feeling right now? >> probably just a whole bunch
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of surrealness. it is definitely one of the most incredible and surreal moments of your life winning the gold medal in the all-around, kind of having -- thinking about having all of your hard work and all of the hours and dedication and years in the gym culminating at just the perfect time. and now you have this olympic gold medal to show for is. it will probably take her a few days for it to sink in. it didn't sink in for me until i got back home and how excited everyone was about it. so it will probably really sink in for her when she gets back home. >> how might her life change when she gets back to the states? >> oh, gosh. it will get flipped upside down for sure and in the coolest way. she will be asked to go everywhere and have all these amazing opportunities to look forward to. and i hope she enjoys every single minute of it. she deserves it. she worked so hard for it.
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yeah, just a lot of fun and maybe a little bit of -- she'll be a little tired, but it will be awesome. >> this olympics has brought new attention to athlete's mental health with simone biles and naomi osaka opening up about their struggles. what is your advice in terms of mental health? >> yeah. you know what, i think the best advice i can give is to stay grounded, to keep the community around you that's been around you, your family, your friends. keep all of these people close that have helped you on the rise on the way to that gold medal. so make sure you stay close with them and you have them to lean on. in the good times and the bad times, when she's exhausted or she doesn't know what to do or how to handle something. that is my best advice. i had a great support system, great family looking after me, and i think that was such a huge help in me being able to
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transition to carly, you know, the college student, the wife, the mom, the friend, all of those things. >> simone biles was on the sidelines cheering on all the competitors. you went through the same system, the same rigorous training. you felt the pressures of being a star olympian. what do you think usa gymnastics needs to do to make sure these athletes have the support they need? it sounds like you were lucky. you had a support network. but other athletes talked about how they don't always have that. >> yeah. you know what? i think usa gymnastics is really in transition still right now trying to change a lot of things, trying to learn a lot of things that maybe they can do and change to help the gymnasts coming up and just make it a better system. but i think, you know, having that pool of maybe mentors, college athlete mentors that these younger gymnasts can maybe go to and talk to when they're
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having a hard time or if they just don't know how to handle the nerves or they want to know what we did or want advice. i think that would be a huge help. now, maybe counselors or therapists on hand, things of that nature that, you know, are just kind of at the disposal of the gymnast when they need it. that would be a big help. >> earlier this week after simone threw, we talked to ali raceman and she talked about how dangerous gymnastics can be if your head is not in the right place. i wonder what your reaction was if you saw any of the, frankly, inane and pathetic commentary on social media questioning simone biles and her strength and wherewithal, given the fact that it is so important that your head is in the right place or you could break your neck as a gymnast. >> yeah. especially simone. she is doing the hardest skills that you can do. male gymnasts don't do these skills. when you are not mentally all there and prepared and feeling
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at your best and 100%, it is very dangerous. gymnastics is a dangerous sport to begin with. when you are doing dangerous skills like she is doing of that caliber, it can be life threatening if you are not mentally there and prepared. >> thanks so much. a joy to have you on our show. our coverage on cnn continues right now. happening now, breaking news. president biden announces new orders and incentives to encourage covid-19 vaccinations, telling americans who haven't gotten their shots, you don't have to die. also tonight, the nation's capitol joins the growing list of cities reimposing mask mandates as the delta variant rages. it is more fuel for a republican revolt against mask rules. and congress approves $2 billion in funding aimed at better securing the u.s