tv ABC World News Tonight With David Muir ABC March 10, 2021 3:30pm-4:00pm PST
$75,000. and under $150,000 for couples. and also an extension of tonight, the president's historic bill passes. help for struggling americans is now on the way. president biden's $1.9 trillion covid relief bill clears its final hurdle. to be signed by the president on friday, after house democrats today passed the historic bill, sending it to the president's desk. the president immediately signaling, quote, help is here. tonight, what it means for millions of americans, the checks for $1,400. what it means for a typical family of four. also, the jobless benefits extended through the summer. and the cost of health insurance lowered if you rely on obamacare. the presidnt scheduled to address the nation tomorrow night. and how soon will those checks go out? your questions answered right here tonight. rachel scott live on the hill. it comes as a growing number of states ease restrictions.
texas today opening businesses 100% capacity, lifting its mask mandate. other states taking steps, too, but tonight, cdc director dr. rochelle walensky warning 90% of the population is still not fully vaccinated. urging caution, having come this far. president biden late today on another 100 million doses of johnson & johnson's single shot vaccine. and what dr. fauci said today about achieving herd immunity here in the u.s. and when. it was encouraging. the trial of former minneapolis police officer derek chauvin, charged with killing george floyd. what we learned today about the three other officers charged. the attacks on asian-americans in this country and tonight, the brutal new case involving a 75-year-old asian-american man viciously targeted. what authorities are now saying tonight. we're tracking the severe storms from california to the middle of this country. heavy snow, rain and severe thunderstorms in some places and we'll time it out. and the images tonight. the scare on the chair lift.
the young boy dangling. >> just keep on hanging! and america strong tonight. finally, so many grandparentgra what they've waited for. good evening and it's great to have you with us here on a wednesday night. and we begin tonight with the news that millions of struggling americans will soon be getting help. president biden's historic $1.9 passed the house and now heads - to the president's desk to be signed on friday. he'll address the nation tomorrow night, one of the largest economic rescue packages since the great depression. with $1,400 checks for most americans and new unemploymemem benefits just as an earlier round was set to run out. lowering the cost of health insurance if you are on obamacare. and the president saying, help is here. the measures clearing the house. not one republican voting for the bill, though the president
is aware of the polling, showing american voters by a large majority support this effort. democratic leaders from the senate and the house signing the act before sending it to the president. the president speaking of that support across the country, saying the relief bill passed with the support of, quote, an overwhelming percentage of americans, democrats, independents and republicans. and tonight, what this will mean for most americans. the typical family of four. we're going to go down the numbers for you. and with news tonight of this bill passing, there is also news from american airlines and what this immediately means for thousands of employees. abc's rachel scott tonight leading us off from the hill. >> reporter: tonight, a bitterly divided congress passing one of the most sweeping economic rescue packages in american history. >> the motion is adopted. >> reporter: a big win for democrats. >> this is the most consequential legislation that many of us will ever be a party to. >> reporter: and also for president biden, just 50 days into his term.
>> this represents an historic, historic victory for the american people. >> reporter: his message -- help is on the way. >> everything in the american rescue plan addresses a real need, including investments to fund our entire vaccination effort. more vaccines, more vaccinators and more vaccination sites. >> reporter: by the end of this month, most americans are expected to receive their largest stimulus check yet, $1,400 per person. that means a family of four making under $150,000 a year could get $5,600, plus a $2,600 child tax credit, for a total of $8,200. antonia gonzalez caro, a mother of two in washington state, is counting on it. she's racked up thousands of dollars in debt during the pandemic. >> we were struggling but now we feel a lot better, we're happier that help is on the way. and we feel relieved, the money is really going to be a blessing. >> reporter: the bill includes billions for small businesses,
extends federal unemployment benefits at $300 a week through september and lowers health care premiums for millions of americans on obamacare. a 64-year-old making $58,000 would see their monthly premium payments drop from around $1,000 to $400. also included, $350 billion in aid to state and local governments, infuriating republicans. >> it's a laundry list of left wing priorities that predate the pandemic. >> let's get to rachel scott for us. as we noted there, the bill passing without a single republican vote. but as we heard from president biden, he's well aware that several polls, even this week, show a majority of americans supported this. and tonight, we're aware of news coming in, we're already seeing immediate effects. american airlines, for one, taking action after news the bill has passed? >> reporter: david, news already that american airlines is canceling plans to furlough 13,000 workers. airlines got a big boost in this
covid-19 relief package. the ceo of american airlines telling workers who received one of those furlough notices to tear it up, saying it is happily canceled. david? >> rachel scott leading us off tonight. and we'll have the president's speech to the nation right here tomorrow night. rachel, thank you. the battle, meanwhile, against covid is not over. more states lifting restrictions tonight. texas, tonight, is now fully open for business at 100% capacity. and the statewide mask mandate has now ended. but cdc director rochelle walensky warning today that while vaccine numbers are ticking up, 90% of the population is still not fully vaccinated, urging caution. authorities saying, why risk this when we've come this far? president biden, meanwhile, late today, on another 100 million doses of johnson & johnson's single shot vaccine. and what dr. fauci said today about achieving herd immunity right here in the u.s. and when, if we continue to see vaccinations at this pace. this was encouraging. abc's marcus moore tonight from dallas. >> reporter: the state of texas is 100 % open tonight.
bit businesstull capacity and. overnight in dallas, the party scene revived as bars reopened for the first time in months, and restaurants served patrons, fully open. it's about midnight right now here in dallas and many people still in the bars. the governor has declared the state fully open, but some people are not ready to ditch their masks. what do you think about that? >> i'm still wearing my mask. >> reporter: governor greg abbott pointing to an increase in vaccines and hospitalizations trending downward, but the cdc reports texas is near the bottom of the list when it comes to vaccinations -- roughly 8.6% of its population fully vaccinated. austin and other cities opting to stay masked. and even some businesses keeping masks and social distancing. >> i'm sorry. that's the rules. if you want to come into my eporter:ut this ca owner ys peoplcan make up their minds. >> personal choice and personal >> reporter: the white house has said texas and some other states are moving too quickly, given how far we've come. asking why take unnecessary
risk? as tonight, the white house reveals it will buy an additional 100 million doses of the one-shot johnson & johnson vaccine, which will give a cushion, a sure place given we don't know what could be coming. president biden late today. >> i'm doing this because in this wartime effort, we need maximum flexibility. a lot can change. and we need to be prepared. >> reporter: meanwhile, the list of states easing restrictions grows. maryland, new york and new jersey planning to relax rules on restaurants and businesses. wyoming now the latest state to drop its mask mandate. but the cdc explaining why it has not yet released standards for states to relax restrictions. >> we're not quite ready to create those standards because we still have 90% of people unprotected. >> reporter: the cdc this week saying grandparents who are fully vaccinated can visit with family and grandchildren who are not, as long as they are not high risk. but on travel, the idea of gett family, dr. anthony fauci today saying we are not there yet. fauci suggesting there could be changes on that front in the coming weeks.
>> you're going to see little by little, more and more guidelines getting people to be more and more flexible. >> reporter: today, the massachusetts governor fighting tears, marking a year since the state took on the pandemic. >> this is the one-year anniversary of the signing of the -- of the executive order here in massachusetts that put the commonwealth into a state of emergency. >> all right, so, let's get to marcus moore in dallas for us tonight. and marcus you dr. anthony fauci also making news today when it comes to achieving herd immunity here in the u.s. his timeline, his forecast, if we continue to vaccinate at this pace? >> reporter: yeah, dr. fauci was saying, david, when he looks at the vaccine rollout, he believes it's possible the u.s. could reach herd immunity by the end of the summer or early fall, but he cautioned that americans need to get vaccinated, otherwise we
risk delaying that milestone. david? >> but late summer was really encouraging to hear. marcus, thank you. in the meantime, to the other news this evening, and to the trial of former minneapolis police officer derek chauvin, charged in the death of george floyd. today, we have learned the three other former officers at the scene that day will not testify for or against chauvin in his trial. here's abc's alex perez tonight. >> reporter: tonight, the court inching one step closer to a full jury in the trial of derek chauvin, the former cop accused of murdering george floyd. lawyers confirming the three other former officers charged in floyd's death, who'll face their own trial in august, won't testify during chauvin's. >> i confirmed with each of the attorneys last night that they are not permitting their clients to testify in this trial. >> reporter: the first black man seated on the jury today. jurors identities kept secret, but he told attorneys he has a favorable opinion of both the black lives matter and blue lives matter groups, and that he's familiar with where the incident occurred. >> i also used to live not far
from that area before, when i first met my wife, so that's why i was like, it could have been me. >> reporter: also seated today, a white male in his 30s or 40s who says he's seen that video of chauvin pinning floyd more than once and supports black lives matter. chauvin has pleaded not guilty to all charges. and david, the state supreme court declining a review called upon by chauvin's attorneys, so the decision to whether they should reinstate a third degree murder charge is now in the hands of the judge. he's expected to take up that issue tomorrow morning. david? >> all right, alex perez in minneapolis again tonight. alex, thank you. we're going to turn tonight to the growing battle over voting rights in this country, after the election. republicans in at least 43 states now introducing bills to restrict access. arizona's senate moving to make mail-in voters send in i.d. paperwork with their vote. and major moves also afoot in iowa and georgia tonight. abc's steve osunsami from atlanta.
>> vote no on hb531! >> reporter: at the state house in downtown atlanta, people who voted by mail in georgia are bringing the fight, accusing republican lawmakers of trying to stop black and brown people from voting. >> because black voters came out in record numbers and flipped this state. >> reporter: it was the presidential election here in november and the u.s. senate runoff in january that led to this. democrats won, with the largest mail-in vote ever recorded. before all the votes were even counted, state republicans were writing these new laws. if the governor agrees, you'll no longer be able to vote by mail without giving an accepted reason. and they're trying to get rid of the drop boxes outside county offices that made it real easy to turn in votes. some of these lawmakers are even trying to end sunday voting, which is hugely popular with black churches. >> our freedom to vote is under attack. >> reporter: georgia is not by any means alone.
the governor of iowa just signed a law reducing early voting by nine days and closing polls an hour earlier on election day. in a statement, she talked about needing to "protect the integrity of every election." president biden is flat-out saying, don't fall for it. >> elected officials in 43 states have already introduced over 250 bills to make it harder for americans to vote. we cannot let them succeed. >> reporter: this is a look at this effort across america, mostly in state houses controlled by republicans. these election laws are being changed by some of the same republicans who wrote them a few years ago and had no problems until now. critics say that this argument about election security is a fig leaf, especially here in georgia. there was no widespread voter fraud to be found, and this state's top republicans, the governor and the lieutenant governor, for example, are still saying this tonight. david? >> all right, steve osunsami and
we'll of course stay on this. now to the massive effort to get to communities where americans have to drive hours just to get a vaccine. millions live with no pharmacies nearby. regions of the country that are called pharmacy deserts, from rural america to small towns, the reality for tens of thousands who want to get vaccinated, too. here's abc's deborah roberts tonight. >> reporter: this is the only way some american communities can get vital medications -- loading them onto a bus, traveling miles through the open desert. and getting precious covid vaccines here in rural texas requiring an even longer journey. >> so if i drive from here to hector county coliseum in odessa, it's showing me three hours and 38 minutes. >> reporter: jorge figueroa lives in presidio, texas, a remote, mostly latino town nestled in the rio grande valley. you were willing to drive that far just to get the vaccine? >> yes. >> reporter: a review of data by abc news revealing millions of americans live in so-called pharmacy deserts, locations
where getting medication was already hard and the vaccine even more difficult. and there are 150 counties where there's no pharmacy at all, in states like nebraska and montana. linda molinar not only picks up vaccines from distant hospitals -- >> it's 250 miles just to drive from presidio to midland. so that's 500 miles just to get the vaccines. >> reporter: -- she's also the only provider in town. it's far from just a rural problem. in chicago, nearly a million people live in a pharmacy desert, the majority in black and brown communities. 80-year-old juanita love and 78-year-old friend betty jo swanson had to drive to the edge of their neighborhood for vaccines after their local pharmacy closed. are you worried that some of the other seniors in your neighborhood might not be able to get the vaccine because they can't get to the pharmacy? >> i am. >> there's no easy way. so that's our problem. >> this was really eye-opening, deb, and really important. we're so glad you brought this to us tonight. and we did take note that
president biden just today vowed to make sure people living in rural communities and small towns will have access to vaccines. >> reporter: that's right, david. this could be a real game changer. president biden vowing that the federal government will begin deploying these mobile clinics to these places where people can't get to pharmacies and vaccination clinics. the idea being to meet people where they live so they don't have to drive these extreme distances just to get vaccinated. david? >> deborah roberts with us tonight. and we should mention, much more of deb's report on pharmacy deserts, the reality facing so many americas, later tonight right here on until until. and one more note from washington tonight, the senate today confirming two more members of president biden's cabinet. former congresswoman marcia fudge as secretary of housing and urban development, the first african-american woman to lead the department. and judge merrick garland, the new attorney general. at his confirmation hearing, he said the attorney general is the lawyer for the american people, quote, not the president's lawyer. when we come back here
tonight, the attacks on asian-americans in this country, and tonight, the brutal new case. the victim viciously targeted. what authorities are now saying. and we're also tracking those severe storms in the west and the middle of this country in a moment. i'm hoping to get on the lung transplant list, but i don't know if i'll be accepted in time. my children are really worried. my tip is, every morning, give your kids a call or send them a text. it may be the last time that you do. (announcer) you can quit. for free help, call 1-800-quit now. ♪ fight fleas and ticks with seresto. eight months continuous protection against fleas and ticks. it's effective, convenient. seresto. keep playing. more on seresto.com struggling to manage my type 2 diabetes
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parts of minnesota and iowa. the second storm bringing heavy rain and snow to california tggd forcing mandatory evacuations in silverado canyon. an the chair lift scare in. a 12-year-old boy slipping from his seat while snowboarding in canada. look at this. he wrapped his arm around the safety bar to hold on. other skiers cheeri iing for hio hang on. he made it to the top. when we come back here tonight, the grandparents who waited for this moment. ♪ got my hair ♪ ♪ got my head ♪ ♪ got my brains ♪ ♪ got my ears ♪ ♪ got my heart ♪ ♪ got my soul ♪ ♪ got my mouth ♪ ♪ i got life ♪ new crest pro-health complete protection kills 99% of bacteria. plus, it works around... ...and around...
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millions of grandparents, it's been a very long wait. tonight, more than a year into this, the grandparents across this country getting fully vaccinated, the hugs now finally beginning. in ford city, pennsylvania, nana jean chvala has not seen her 3-year-old grandson trax for months. mom kelsey documents the moment. >> go ahead. go see her. >> the long awaited hug. >> come here! oh my goodness! >> running into his grandmother's arms. >> i missed you so much! >> here in the bronx, grandmother evelyn shaw got her vaccine, too. her doctor writing her a previpgs, saying "you're allowed to hug your granddaughter." they have not hugged in a year. and if florida, the
family. 's been great to hug them for the first time. >> back in pennsylvania tonight -- >> hi, david. >> hi, david. >> hi, david. >> mom kelsey, son trax and nana jean with us tonight. >> we really hope that everybody that's watched the video, maybe it brought a smile to your face. we hope that it brought you some joy and that it brings everybody some hope. just knowing that there's a light at the end of the tunnel. >> don't give up hope. get vaccinated. >> thanks, david. thanks, david. >> bye, david! >> thank you, and it does bring hope. keep the hugs coming. we've waited so long. good night. building a better bay area for a safeand secure future, this is abc7 news.
>> well, take a look at this. snow and hail across the bay area. we're not just talking about the mountains here. check out the snow caught by sky 7 as our chopper flew around the bay area this afternoon. of.s a winter good afternoon. thanks for joining us. i'm larry beil. >> indeed. i'm kristen sze. check this out in santa rosa. there was so much hail, it looked like snow on the road, didn't it? this video was posted by the fire department warning about the growing number of crashes. and this video from a backyard in santa rosa. you can see and hear the hail falling and see it starting to pile up. now this is in sonoma county in windsor, where hail and snow has accumulated on the ground there. the roads do appear to be clear but slick. and of course drivers should be aware of slippery conditions. >> let's check out the south bay now where you can see the hail accumulating, especially on the side of the highway there. that's a side of 101.
the storm also dumped some hail and rain in downtown san francisco today. this is video from near the embarcadero right outside of our abc7 studios. and in the east bay, hail and rain coming down. this was just a short time ago. again, you can hear it. pretty heavy at times. abc7 news reporter laura anthony was there today as the storm hit. >> one had to be almost as high as a jet to see it. but on mount diablo and peaks throughout the bay area, the wild march storm left a good amount of snow. such a rare happening that it prompted some to hike up just to see it up close. >> absolutely beautiful. this is my first time on mount diablo when there is snow. i'm blown away. really beautiful day. >> it wasn't quite enough of the sled or snowboard, and began to melt almost as soon as it settled in. but still -- >> it's really nice. plus just being outdoors. it's fresh air and everything gets clean and