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tv   CBS Evening News With Norah O Donnell  CBS  August 23, 2021 6:30pm-7:00pm PDT

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news app and the cbs evening news is coming up next. >> we'll be back here on the kpix 5 news captioning sponsored by cbs >> o'donnell: tonight full f.d.a. approval, the major milestone for pfizer's vaccine. will it move the needle in the race to vaccinate america? with the fastest vaccine approval in f.d.a. history the military, businesses and school districts now mandating shots. president biden's message to the millions of americans waiting to get a dose. >> the moment you have been waiting for is here, time for you to go get your vaccination. >> o'donnell: plus an update on hospital i.c.u.'s filling up with unvaccinated patients. deadly flooding: 17 inches of rain in tennessee turns into a dangerous wall of water. the devastating story of twin babies ripped from their father's arms. henri's aftermath. rescues in new jersey, trees down in massachusetts and record
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rainfall cuts new york city's comeback concert short. chaos in afghanistan: a firefight erupts at the airport as the taliban warn of consequences if the u.s. stays after august 31 deadline. plus some military rescue mission to help americans stranded in kabul. in our back to school series: mask confusion. what parents are telling cbs news about mask mandates as tens of thousands of students and staff are forced to quarantine. and a heartfelt reunion. 77 years after a soldier saved three children's lives during world war ii. this is the "cbs evening news" with norah o'donnell, reporting from the nation's capital. >> o'donnell: good evening to our viewers in the west, and thank you for joining us, we'll begin with the news that many hope will convince the vaccine hesitant to get their shot: the f.d.a. has given full approval to the pfizer covid vaccine in record time, actually
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just eight months after it gave emergency authorization and it has already lead numerous employers, universities and the military to imposeci as we come on the air roughly 73% of adults have received at least one vaccine dose. nearly 80 million americans who are eligible have not. full approval means pfizer can now market and advertise the vaccine the way it does with other drugs and should make it easier to get a shot. and it comes as the u.s. is fighting a spike in covid cases and an increase in hospitalization, especially in states with low vaccination rates. cbs' david begnaud will lead us off from louisiana one of the states hardest hit by the surge. good evening, david. >> reporter: good evening, tonight inside the main covid i.c.u. here at our lady of lords in lafayette and the wife of a man on a ventilator with covid walked out of his room and said "david, when i heard the news that pfizer's vaccine had been approved by the fda, she said i thought to myself, what is their
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excuse now?" today's f.d.a. decision is being seen as a shot of confidence for the pfizer vaccine. >> this vaccine has gone through the gauntlet and it is highly effective. >> reporter: with covid cases at their highest level since january, and first dose vaccination rates down 14 percent in the past week alone, president biden today quickly seized on the chance to get more shots into arms. >> the moment you have been waiting for is here. it is time for you to go get your vaccination. >> reporter: already today the department of defense promised mandatory vaccination guidelines for its 1.4 million active duty service members. while in new york, the nation's largest school system is now going to require all employees to receive at least one vaccine dose by the end of september. more companies and public employees are expected to follow suit. >> reporter: it was the f.d.a. approval. >> yes. >> reporter: at this clinic at the university of louisiana
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lafayette 19 year old cailin magee was in line for her vaccine, even early. what did you think when you heard about the f.d.a. approval. wast-caos said she was no longer to get it either. >> i feel better, less anxious about the whole thing. and i am ready to get my second one. >> reporter: kaiser family foundation found 31% of the unvaccinated would be more likely it to change their mind whe the fda granted full appoval. you think this is going to be the consequential game changer? >> i think the mandates and people realize that to fully participate in society they will need to be vaccinated. >> reporter: tonight, louisiana continues to lead the nation in the rate of new covid cases. overwhelming hospitals. >> reporter: 24 year old keely reaux is on a ventilator aftr her entire family of ten caught the virus on vacation. >> we let our guard down. we started venturing out. we booked a family vacation. we thought like the rest of the
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world, this isn't that real of a virus. >> reporter: keely wasn't vaccinated. she was eight months pregnant when she contracted coronavirus and her mother says she was an anti-vaxxer but was thinking of getting it. she is in the i.c.u.. we are told that of all the i.c.u. rooms are full of covid and every one unvaccinated except for one person. >> your reporting is another urgent reminder about the need to get vaccinated. thank you. >> reporter: in central tennessee tonight the search continues for more than a dozen people who are unaccounted for after devastating floods killed more than 20 people, jessi mitch sell in the hard hit town of waverley. the raging flood waters that swept through waverley tennessee ripped the homes off their foundation, submerged cars and left behind miles of destruction. nearly 20 people were killed and more than a dozen are missing.
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among them 15 year old lily bryant. today her family was out searching again. the teen got separated from her sister while they were both floating on a piece of debris. >> hopefully we'll find her. to have some kind of closure. better than just wondering. >> reporter: this deadly flooding took the lives of several children, among them were seven month old twins ryan and riley who were torn from their father's arms and two year old kellen who was yanked from his mother's grip. >> they were on the clothes line hanging on. a wonderful kid. >> my mom and i are being rescued. >> reporter: neighbors used jet skis to help some of the stranded and search and rescue teams pulled residents off rooftop. and it's heartbreak for loretta lynn who is mourning the loss of hers ranch foreman who died in the devastating flood that tore through her property. >> being wayne and being our ranch heartbeat was out there
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trying to get the dad gum tractor out of harm away. >> reporter: but for amber elliott and her children they are grateful to be alive. she said they were forced to retreat to the top of her car as the water started to rise. >> the scariest thing ever for me and my kids to be in. >> reporter: 17 inches of rain fell here in just 24 hours turning this creek into a raging river, norah. crews took advantage of the clear weather today to clear a lot of that debris and hopefully find answers for those families. >> o'donnell: jessi mitchell, thank you so much. and more weather now, what was once hurricane henri is still dumping rain in new england it knocked out power to tense of thousands of homes and businesses, meg oliver shows us the massive cleanup. >> reporter: tropical storm henri carried enough muscle to batter the northeast. high winds and storm surge flooded streets. ripped down trees and power lines leaving more than 100,000
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in the dark on sunday. >> this part of the state got crushed. >> reporter: new jersey governor phil murphy. >> there was a huge, massive rain event. this is double digit inches in some places, of rain, unheard of. >> reporter: how bad is it? >> it's terrible towns in hermeta the water slipped into the house so quickly. >> like an ocean coming down the street. >> reporter: how quickly did you get out? >> we got out within a half an hour, a boat came and got us. >> reporter: she said the water rose up to her basement ceiling about three feet remains and everything from the appliances, clothing to furniture gone. >> this was completely engulfed with water. >> reporter: police chief michael zara, jr. showed extensive structural damage in the neighborhood. >> you could see the water has compromised the entire foundation. you can see the silt line on the bottom, that show high the water was. >> reporter: people in other parts of new jersey had to be rescued including more than 85 people in newark.
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henri trounced through new york city saturday night with a torrential rainfall setting a record for the most rain in a single hour with nearly two inches. >> reporter: the downpour forced a halt to the star studded homecoming concert in central park. >> please seek shelter for your safety. >> reporter: henri slammed into rhode island's coast as it made landfall sunday afternoon before limping off to sea. and late this afternoon three tornadoes were reported outside of boston, here in helmetta as you can see the water has receded but the dumpsters are filling up with debris, out of the 73 houses in this neighborhood, more than half have suffered extensive flooding damage, norah. >> o'donnell: meg oliver, thank you so much. turning now to overseas, because tonight the u.s. military has expanded its evacuation mission in afghanistan sending helicopters and troops outside the kabul airport a ground to rescue stranded americans. that is new. cbs' nancy cordes is monitoring the situation at the white house, eight days before that deadline for the u.s.
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withdrawal. >> reporter: despite the chaos outside kabul's airport, evacuations are picking up speed. u.s. military cargo jets evacuated more than 10,000 people, some of them americans but most of them afghans in the past 24 hours. just outside the airport at least 7 afghans were crushed to death this weekend and a firefight claimed the life of an afghan soldier. the pentagon confirmed today that u.s. troops made a second foray off airport grounds to rescue trained americans. >> commanders on the ground have the authority to conduct local missions as they deem appropriate to the need. and we charge them with assessing the risk. >> reporter: u.s. troops are racing to get as many people out as possible before august 31st. the deadline president biden set months ago for a full u.s. withdrawal. today a taliban spokesman warned the u.s. military not to stay a
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day longer. >> this is something you can say is a red line, it there be the relation, that will create mistrust between us. >> we believe that we have time between now and the 31st to get out any american who wants to get out. >> reporter: national security advisor jake sullivan. are you engaged in talks with the taliban overextending that deadline and how are those talks going? >> we are in talks with the taliban on a daily basis through the political and security channels. i'm not going to get into the details of those discussions here to protect those discussions. >> reporter: a plane load of afghan refugees landed today at washington's dulles airport. they're being temporarily housed at four different military bases around the country, that are now frantically building up capacity to accommodate a combined 25,000 people. a new cbs news poll shows the chaotic withdrawal has pulled
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down the president's approval ratings from 62% in march to 50% now. i think that history is going to record this was the logical, rational and right decision to make. >> o'donnell: nancy joins us from the white house, i understand that at least three babies have been born during the evacuation. what can you tell us? >> reporter: that is right, norah. pentagon officials confirmed today that those three births did occur on separate flights. in fact, in one case they said that the aircraft commander actually had the plane descend in altitude to increase pressure in the cabin to stabilize the mother's condition. we're told that the plane eventually landed in germany and mother and baby are doing just fine, norah. >> o'donnell: the military doing just about everything. nancy cordes, thank you. >> reporter: and there is a big development in the capitol riot, police have cleared the officer who shot and killed a protester
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saying he acted lawfully. and may have saved lawmakers' lives, nikole killion reports from the capitol. >> these were the final moments before ashli babbitt was shot by a capitol police officer you as rioters tried to push their way into the speake's lobby outside the house chamber tonight the u.s. capitol police announced the completion of an internal review that found the officer's conduct was lawful and within department policy and will not face internal discipline. >> the video speaks for its self. and we were all there that day. >> ohio democrat tim ryan shares a subcommittee that oversees capitol police. >> most americans understand what happened that day. most americans think what was done was appropriate, lawful and now we can begin the moving on. >> the death of the 35 year old air force veteran and q-anon supporter has sparked outrage among many conservatives including former president trump. >> the person that shot ashley babbit, boom, right through the head, just boom there was no
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reason for that. >> reporter: in a statement babbitt's family said an investigation by the officers own police department conducted in secret proves nothing and certainly is not an exoneration. the u.s. capitol police say the officer has faced numerous threats and is not naming the person out of concern for their safety. the officers' attorney says the decision by the department to clear the officer was the only clear the officer was the only correct conclusion. norah. >> o'donnell: nikole killion, thank you so much. well tonight with classes resuming in more states, our cbs news poll finds 69% of parents are concerned about their kids getting covid at school. 58 percent say face mask should be required. but it's hard to keep kids safe when the rules keep changing. here's cbs' mark strassmann. >> at centennial high new school year, new dress code. >> do you have masks. >> reporter: masks required. that is typical across metro atlanta. kathy king has two fifth
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graders. >> i'm happy that they are doing it. obviously at this age nobody can be vaccinated. >> reporter: after three weeks of classes, by one estimate, more than 23,000 students and staff across metro atlanta have been exposed and are now in quarantine. masking policies vary by school district, even day to day. douglas county changed its policy two days before school began for masks recommended to masks required. >> leading isn't easy. and i know that the decision to wear masks, isn't popular. >> reporter: school superintendent trent norris. how important is it to be flex i believe. >> we want to go back to not wearing masks. >> metro atlanta schools have patch work policies toward masking. many required but sometimes recommended or optional, atlanta public schools mandate masks. their vaccination rates are low, nearly one in five eligible students are fully vaccinated. nearly three in five teachers and staff are also, or say they
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plan to be. angle's five year old brown just started kindergarten. >> it tugs on the heart stringsk i worry about him getting really sick. >> even though he is masked. >> oh yes, 100 percent. >> anxiety fueled by covid changing face here. nearly a third of new covid cases are under 18. mark strassmann, cbs news, atlanta. >> o'donnell: and still much more news ahead on tonight's cbs evening news, parting shots from disgraced governor andrew cuomo as he leaves office and the girls stealing the show at the little league world series.
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>> o'donnell: hours before he leaves office disgraced new york governor, andrew cuomo blames his demise to intense political pressure and media frenzy, that he was forced to step down after the state's attorney general accused him of sexually harassing 11 women. lt. governor kathy hochul will
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be sworn in add midnight and become new york's first female governor. all eyes are on the little league world series where 12 year old ella brunning is hoping to make history as the first girl on a championship team. she had multiple hits in her team's latest victory and stole a base and scored. ella's team from abilene, texas, is considered one of the best in the tournament. all right, coming up next, a special reunion for a soldier who became a hero for the shot he didn't fire.
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like you, my hands are everything to me. but i was diagnosed with dupuytren's contracture. and it got to the point where things i took for granted got tougher to do. thought surgery was my only option. turns out i was wrong. so when a hand specialist told me about nonsurgical treatments, it was a total game changer. like you, my hands have a lot more to do. learn more at factsonhand.com today. >> o'donll: tonight a st
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>> o'donnell: tonight a story that began in the chaos of world war ii has remarkable ending. all because of an american gi's split second decision to hold fire. cbs' chris livesay reports from bologna, italy. >> reporter: after 77 years reunited, three lifetimes nearly cut short, in 1944 private first class martin adler was 20 years old stationed in italy and hunting for nazis. >> and i had my good old thompson submachine gun. >> reporter: suddenly movement from a pile of blankets but before he could pull the trigger. >> momma came out scream, bambini, bambanis, babinis. >> children. >> children. >> and she stood in front of my gun.
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preventing me from. >> in his relief, adler what his picture taken with the siblings. z. >> an astounding reunion for private adler, now 97 and living in florida, thanks to his daughter rochelle who used the internet to track down the kids now grandparents, even great grandparents, just like private adler. and thanks to private adler who held the trigger. >> what do you think that was that made you stop. >> god looked down. >> chris livesay, cbs news, bologna, italy. >> o'donnell: what an incredible story, we'll be right back. >> tomorrow on the cbs evening st
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>> tomorrow on the cbs evening news we continue our back to school series with the question as the school year begins whereh are all the teachers, why so many educators are leaving the classroom. reminder if you can't watch us live don't forget to set your dvr so you can watch us later, that is tonight's edition of the cbs evening news. i'm norah o'donnell in the nation's capitol. see you right back here tomorrow. hope you have a good night. captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
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right now at 7:00 -- >> the public safety union in san jose pushing back against a new vaccine requirement intended to make everyone safer. and as more mandates are announced, the black market for counterfeit vaccine cards is booming. but they may come at a much steeper cost than the purchase price. >> this is a legal. you could actually go to prison. hazy skies over much of the bay area today, but i'm tracking better air quality, cleaner skies overhead in the forecast. plus, why all that smoke could make it even harder for california's clouds to produce any rain. and the race to track down the source of a mystery pill following an east bay teen's sudden-death. right now on the kpix 5 news at 7:00 and streaming on cbsn bay area, it's deadline day for thousands of city workers in san jose to either
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prove they've been vaccinated, or submit to weekly testing, or find themselves on unpaid leave. some city worker unions are pushing back. >> we still don't believe in a mandate. we believe in vaccinations. we are not saying that we're an anti-vax organization, but we believe there should be options and choice for numbers. >> the weekly testing option is expected to be dropped in the coming weeks, except for those with valid medical or religious exceptions. today's full fda approval of the pfizer vaccine could open the door for more mandates from workplaces to publ acvei'm iz cook. >> and i'm ken bastida. with the pressure mounting on the unvaccinated to roll up sleeves, some are turning to counterfeit cards. >> they're cheap and easily available online, but as juliette goodrich explains in an original report, the

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