REPORTER: It appears as if he`s being punished for trying to save the lives of the sailors on his command. What`s your assessment?
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I won`t put an assessment to all, but we`re going to wait for a little while because I understand there`s a news conference by the secretary of defense about that. But, you know, I don`t agree with that at all, not at all, not even a little bit. Yes?
REPORTER: Thank you. This morning you said once again, that New York got off to late start and they should have pushed harder. But governors and other state leaders say they rely on federal government to assess the situation and how risky it is. And they want to know how would they have known to start sooner without your guidance?
TRUMP: Well, they have experts and, frankly, long after we came out and talked about it. Look, how would I have known to cut off China. I cut off China very early. And if I didn`t, we would have a chart that you wouldn`t believe.
So how would I know to do that, how would I know to cut off Europe? I cut off Europe very early. I mean, you have to make a decision. People knew that some bad things were going on and they got off to late start and some others got off to late start also. But we cut off China. If we didn`t cut off China, we would have been in some big trouble and we cut it off. But you know what, we cut it off way early.
REPORTER: Mr. President, a follow up on the insurance point and a separate question coming from my colleague who can`t be in the room, on the insurance point --
TRUMP: Who are you with?
REPORTER: Roll Call. Is there going to be an opportunity for insurance companies if, in fact, hospitals are compensated for uncompensated care, are the insurance companies going to also get compensated for its extraordinary expenses that they may have or they -- assuming that cost?
TRUMP: So we haven`t discussed it but we`re talking to them. You know, getting them to not pay copays and the case of the big ones was a tremendous thing. That`s a lot of money they gave up, but we`re discussing that with the insurance companies. We`ll let you know. It will be pretty quick.
Yes, go ahead.
REPORTER: I have a question on Japan, sir. They are expanding their entry ban to include the United States. Are you planning to take any similar action to ban Japanese nationals from coming to the U.S. as a result of this crisis?
TRUMP: Well, we`re looking at a lot of things and a lot of different bans. We have more bans than anybody. We have bans where bans weren`t fashionable, if you remember right at the beginning of this administration with so different reasons. But we`ve had bans long before people thought of bans. When I did China, it had never been done before. I was the first one to do it. Remember that. It had never, according to what I read it on the paper, this had never been done. This is a terrible thing to do. And four weeks later, they were all saying we`re lucky we did it. So we`re looking at it. No, we hear that.
And I think it`s fine that they do that. They`re trying to protect their country and we have to protect our country.
REPORTER: Mr. President, I asked you about stay-at-home orders and if that, you know, decision should be left in the hands of governors or if you`re considering telling the entire nation to stay at home. So just today, the Georgia`s governor finally issued stay-at-home order saying that individuals could have been infecting people before they ever felt bad but we didn`t know that until the last 24 hours. Is that ignorance, gross incompetence?
TRUMP: He`s a good governor, Brian Kemp. He`s a very good --
REPORTER: Would you even had calls with these governors.
TRUMP: He`s a good governor and he has to make his own decision on that. And I let the states. I think we`re about 85 percent positive on that if you look -- I think it`s about 85 percent of the states who hsave got to stay at home. Brian is a great governor. It`s his decision. He made that decision. Ultimately, he decided to go along with it. And they`re doing well. And the state is doing well in many respects.
Yes, go ahead, please.
REPORTER: This is another question from my colleague who couldn`t make it, from Emily Goodin at the Daily Mail. The question regards to the Russian plane that landed at JFK with medical supplies. Did the United States ask Russia for the state or is it --
CHUCK TODD, MSNBC HOST: You`ve been listening to today`s coronavirus briefing from the task force there with the president. It looks like we have gotten all the fresh information that we a`re going to get from this evening.
I want to bring in two doctors that have been watching with me, Dr. Megan Ranney, Dr. Kavita Patel, as well as our White House Correspondent, Kristen Welker. I want to start with the -- I want to start with Kristen Welker there, and you heard, we`re -- there clearly is a debate obviously on the task force about the masks. I want to get to our doctors in a minute on that.
But I was -- it was interesting to me to see Dr. Birx make a stronger plea to Americans to abide by the guidelines. Then the president did. I mean, she was employing we, are not succeeding, we are not bending the curve. Spain is bending the curve. France is bending the curve. We are not bending the curve. Boy, that was a a gut punch moment for me just to hear Dr. Birx say that.
KRISTEN WELKER, MSNBC WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: It sure was, I wrote that down, Chuck, as well. I think one of the most notable moments of the briefing, she said I can tell by the curve that not everyone is engaging in their social distancing guidelines. So, essentially, saying people are not taking this seriously enough yet, Chuck, or not enough people are taking this seriously enough.
She did say that the debate goes on about whether or not the CDC is going to recommend that Americans do wear masks when they leave their houses. And she stressed that the concern and part of the debate revolves around people getting too relaxed when it comes to these social distancing guidelines, that they want to make sure the people are not touching their faces, that they`re still standing six feet apart and that they`re largely staying at home unless they absolutely need to go out to get food and other critical supplies.
President Trump, for his part, as you heard, Chuck, did have a somewhat different message. He said, look, that is still being is discussed. But if you want to wear mask or wear a scarf, he even tried to make the case that a scarf could potentially be more protective. I`ll leave that to the doctors to weigh in on that point.
But I think a lot of people are looking for guidance on this, Chuck. And so I think this is going to continue to be at the fore front of these briefings until Dr. Birx or the other top doctors there give a final answer, Chuck.
TODD: Kristen, I have one political question for you but I want to put that on pause. I want to go to the doctors first. I want to do the medical staff first.
Dr. Patel, I hope you`re with me here when we`re doing these things. I guess, we`ve lost Dr. Patel. Dr. Ranney, I believe you`re still there. Good. Weigh in on the mask issue. I found it interesting to hear Dr. Birx, look, I`m not going to get into the back and forth that`s clearly taking place in the task force, but she was making the case of why it`s not mandatory white at the same time explaining that it`s going to be added to the guideline. Where do you fall on this? Dr. Raney.
DR. MEGAN RANNEY, EMERGENCY ROOM PHYSICIAN: So I can see both sides. I think in an ideal world, we would have the public being masked when they go out both to protect themselves to keep them from touching their face and to protect others, because such a large percentage of people, we`re now learning, are infected but asymptomatic. So if you`re wearing a mask and you cough or sneeze, you don`t know that you have COVID, it could protect from transmitting that to someone else.
However, we have un utter shortage of protective masks for our frontline healthcare workers, our first responders, our police, right? We don`t have enough masks for those people that are in day-to-day contact with known COVID-19 positive patients. So to tell the general public to wear masks when we don`t have enough for healthcare workers seems a little crazy.
One recommendation I have heard is that all of those wonderful sewers and makers out there who are so enthusiastic about sewing cloth masks, that those could be used by the general public to help prevent transmission, and that may be a good solution for the short term while we try to increase the supply of the standard surgical masks and N95s and keep those fabricated masks, not the homemade masks, keep those high standardized masks for the frontline healthcare workers.
ARI MELBER, MSNBC HOST: This is Ari Melber. I`m continuing our special ongoing coverage of this coronavirus White House briefing. Chuck Todd was with us but I want to tell you, a little bit more about what we`re going to do right now. We are witnessing this surge in cases approaching a quarter million in the United States, new record breaking job losses. This is a tough day during a tough time.
And what we just heard in the briefing was the White House touting their new emergency and business relief measures. The president calling on doctors from around the nation to come help New York. He also discussed the log jams in the so-called supply chain which is delaying, the White House says, how certain supplies are reaching hospitals. The president arguing that he may continue to revise guidelines, something our expert were just discussing.
As we have been doing around here in our special coverage, I want to bring in some new experts who is have be on hand listening to the briefing. Senator Claire McCaskill of Missouri, Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, Professor of Health Care Management at University of Pennsylvania, and many will recognize him as well as the former adviser to President Obama, and as part of our special coverage, former CBS Evening News Anchor, Dan Rather, who now host, AXS T.V.`s The Big Interview.
I could literally start anywhere. I will say, I have three bona fide icons in their respective fields. Doctor, you get the first swing, your reaction to what we heard in the briefing and what people need know right now.
DR. EZEKIEL EMANUEL, MSNBC MEDICAL CONTRIBUTOR: Well, I think you heard some desperation on the part of Dr. Debbie Birx about people not taking the, you know, physical distancing, the washing of the hands seriously. And her worry that because people are taking it seriously, if the government recommend state wearing mask that people still won`t take it seriously. And I think, you know, the curves are beginning to really scare the White House task force even more because we`re not bending the curve at all.
But we should say that, you know, if you just have Florida and Georgia just coming on board in terms of physical distancing over the last few days, you`re not -- you can`t expect the curves to really bend for another two or three weeks or maybe even four weeks. I mean, one of the frustration of this condition is that we take an action and it still takes four weeks to find out what -- whether it`s been effective or not. If there are some spots like Seattle area that -- and San Francisco that do appear that they are doing much better. The demand on their hospital system is not overwhelming the way you might have expected if, in fact, the virus was spreading. And those were states that implemented these physical distancing measures, handwashing measures, work from home measures much earlier than other places.
And you saw some tension there on the mask issue, on the health insurance issue between various parts of the task force. I think everyone recognizes that we got to provide health coverage to everyone. You`re not going to get people in if they are uninsured or they might have tens of thousands of dollars of intensive care bills if they get admitted. I think the face mask issue should be settle. And the last thing is the supply chain. You know, you heard about a few million, 20 million masks. That`s a small number when you think of a country of 330 million people.
MELBER: I`m going to slow you down only because your brain moves quickly. I`m going to keep both of our guests with us. But just before you got to masks, you mentioned this one measurable ray of hope. And I want to put that forward here for viewers and let you expound a little more. Because, as you mentioned, over 40 states now running stay at home orders, this new data, this is out brand new today, and it`s preliminary, but as you just said, it shows some of the drastic measures saving lives. So places that tried this earliest, Washington State, California had more success in flattening the curve, Data reported out by The Washington Post.
So, zeroing in on that, doctor, what does that mean for government policy and what does it mean for individual citizens as we make choices in the coming weeks?
EMANUEL: Well, I think it means what we should have done a long time ago is that every state ought to have the shelter-in-place, stay at home orders, the physical distancing orders, closing restaurants, closing bars, sending people home to work from home and closing schools. I think all of those measures need to be put in place nationwide. And that it reminds people that you`ll see a response in terms of easing on the healthcare system, lower rate of growth, but that will take three or four weeks to materialize.
And this sort of slight laissez-faire attitude that the president has taken regarding this is a little worrisome. They seem to be more urgent. But we still have, as you pointed out, ten states haven`t done this. And I think the data from those West Coast places should suggest the governors and others that this will be effective but you have to do it ASAP.
MELBER: Right. Senator McCaskill?
CLAIRE MCCASKILL, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes. Well, first, my state has not done a statewide stay at home order. We are one of those ten states. The governor though today really has his priorities straight. He made sure nobody is going to pay a late penalty for renewing their conceal and carry license but declined to issue a stay at home order for the entire state. So we have real problems here in my state.
But one of the things that struck me today, Ari, in this briefing, I did a lot of work around government contracting. I understand war profiteering like went on in the Iraq war. What is happening right now is profiteering because of supply and demand. And the federal government has the ability to stop this. Price gouging laws don`t generally apply to government contracts. That`s why the executive power at this time of national emergency should be used to set prices on masks and ventilators and say this is the price that the federal government will pay and you must sell it to us and we will then sell or negotiate however they want to do it, or give to the state that need it. They admitted in this briefing that they don`t want to interrupt commerce. Well that means, we`re going -- I`m not talking about hoarding. I`m talking about gouging, price gouging.
And New York right now is spending billions of dollars on healthcare equipment with public money and they are overpaying for what they are buying because this executive, this president, because of some of the culture in his and politics and his administration don`t want to step in and say, no, we`re not going to put up with profiteering in this healthcare crisis. It`s outrageous to me.
MELBER: Yes. Both very strong points there. Dan Rather, always good to have your perspective as we go through this as a nation. We are, as Claire just mentioned, Claire McCaskill, living through several major changes. Gun sales just hit the second highest on record, unemployment, the highest ever. There are reactions that go beyond even the death toll of the pandemic. Take a listen to how President Obama spoke about then, the economic crisis.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: You don`t need to hear another list of statistic to know our economy is in crisis because you live it every day. It`s the worry you wake up with and the source of sleepless nights.
The impact of this recession is real and it is everywhere. But while our economy may be weakened and our confidence shaken, that we are living through difficult and uncertain times, tonight, I want every American to know this, we will rebuild, we will recover and the United States of America will emerge stronger than before.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MELBER: What`s on your mind as you look at this president`s response?
DAN RATHER, HOST OF AXS T.V.`S THE BIG INTERVIEW: Well, what`s on my mind, Ari, is, first of all, what Ambassador Birx said, the most important message today -- I want to give you some historical perspective, but the most important message is we`re not doing what we need to do to broaden the curve out. We just aren`t doing it. And the weeks and months ahead of (INAUDIBLE) this thing a terrible price for that, we have to listen to the doctors and other scientists. So that`s the most important thing.
In direct answer to your question, look, the lack of federal government response is what it is. Different people will have different harsh things to say about the dysfunction, and it is a lot of dysfunction with it. But it is what it is. And we have to face it.
I`m at the point, and I think a lot of people all are, that we can`t depend on the politicians of any stripe to deliver us from this. It`s going to be our will, our discipline, our commitment, our hope and our resolve is going to do it.
From a historical standpoint, I mean, the world is already asking, how is it that a country that could put a man on the moon can`t get enough masks and gowns for its healthcare frontline workers? Former Senator McCaskill put her finger on something. This is price gouging and war profiteering.
If President Trump wanted to turn around his whole public image in this, if he started naming names, naming the companies, naming the executives who are taking part on this war profiteering and this gouging, he would see his polls go through the roof. I wouldn`t hold my breath if he`s doing that but that`s always open to him. Because this is unforgivable for this war profiteering to take place.
MELBER: And, Mr. Rather, do you view this based on all the stories in administrations that you have covered, do you view this now as the issue, the crisis that defines this year, this election and perhaps this generation that`s coming of age now in this climate?
RATHER: I do. I think it will certainly define President Trump`s presidency, but it will also define our generation. Our fathers and mothers and their fathers and mothers and our ancestors came to us in terrible times. The question now is can we come to this time.
But, you know, I went through a long period in which I thought that the final verdict on President Trump`s administration was bound to be the impeachment proceeding, no longer. These words abandoned (ph) about historic and unprecedented but that`s really understating. We as a people, as a country, have never been through anything like this for well over 100 years, at least.
MELBER: All very important points.
I want to thank Dan Rather and Dr. Emanuel, who returns with us for a special discussion on misinformation later this hour.
Senator McCaskill stays with me.
And, Senator, I`m just going to read to you something that we were charting here, when you look at where we have gone, where we have headed. It took 66 days, Senator, to get from the first U.S. case to hit 100,000, and then five more days to get to the next 100,000.
Walk us through what that means. This is also the charts of this -- what that means and your view of the president`s response.
MCCASKILL: Well, you know, this is when our elected officials and -- are not well-equipped, because there is a very bad habit that people in elective office have -- and I`m sure I was guilty of it from time to time - - and that is thinking in the short term, rather than the long term, and not paying enough attention to data.
So, I think what this president did in the early days was, ignore the science, ignore the experts in his administration, the -- ignore the intelligence community, ignore all of the people that were trying to tell him that he had to move quickly and assertively early.
And now everyone is trying to catch something after it has gone too far. And my state is a great example of that. But, I mean, the idea that you have Florida, with the number of vulnerable people that live in Florida, and it took until just a day or two ago for that governor to do the basics and say, hey, everybody, stay home.
It is this friction between the cold data and the long-term issue vs., well, what`s it going to do for me today politically? And that`s what you`re seeing. And you`re seeing it with especially governors who are close to President Trump, because they`re afraid of him, and they`re afraid they`re going to displease him.
MELBER: Senator Claire McCaskill, thank you very much.
After this break, we`re joined by a top U.S. senator on the crisis hitting New York, where they may run out of ventilators in six days.
And new reporting on what`s happening in Florida, precaution measures finally taking place in that state.
We will be right back.
MELBER: Welcome back to our continuing coverage.
By any measurement, this has been the worst week for the coronavirus in the United States, the new unemployment numbers out today all-time highs. We have a real crisis on our hands. We have had the deadliest days this week since the pandemic began.
And one place driving the grim numbers is New York City. Refrigerated trucks have been parked outside of hospitals, as makeshift morgues ready to collect and transport the march of bodies.
Over 2,300 people have now died of the virus in New York. About one-fifth of that death toll, though, came in just the past 24 hours. Combine that with projections that the peak for New York is weeks away, and you can see why Governor Cuomo offers this assessment:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. ANDREW CUOMO (D-NY): If a person comes in and needs a ventilator, and you don`t have a ventilator, the person dies. That`s the blunt equation here.
And, right now, we have a burn rate that would suggest we have about six days in the stockpile.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MELBER: I`m joined now by New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand.
What else needs to be done for New York?
SEN. KIRSTEN GILLIBRAND (D-NY): Well, I`m very concerned that FEMA is not actually giving relief to the states that need it the most.
I wrote a letter today to President Trump urging him to review what FEMA has done,because the truth is some states that don`t have great needs have received everything they have asked for or even more than they have asked for.
So, New York needs to get the ventilators out of the National Stockpile, as well as the masks and other PPE that are still in the U.S. Defense Department stockpile.
MELBER: There are a lot of different things to take from these press briefings we get at the White House. We have been monitoring several aspects of them.
I think it would be important to get your reaction to something that is certainly not normal, not generally acceptable in any other administration, which was that the president handed off at one point today to someone with no medical expertise or other prior government service history, his son-in- law, Jared Kushner.
I`m just curious your reaction of his role now today in the virus briefings for the country.
GILLIBRAND: I don`t think he`s either prepared or qualified to lead that operation.
President Trump would do better to put experts in charge of this pandemic. President Trump, unfortunately, has made poor decisions from the very beginning, at first minimizing the risk, at second, denying the risk, and, at third, not moving on the risk.
He didn`t actually create the resources that would be necessary to deal with this epidemic. He should have allowed testing from January on, and not required it to go through the CDC. He`s put us behind by months in preparation because of his unwillingness to act and unwillingness to lead.
And so now governors and mayors are doing their best to make up for his lost time.
MELBER: And, Senator, today, we saw unemployment numbers absolutely surge. Last week were the highest on record, four times higher -- just for viewers to remember, four times higher than the next highest number, and this week, today`s new numbers, even higher than that.
At a basic policy level, do you view what the Congress has now done, very expensive, trillions spent, as enough? Or is there more that you want to see done to address what`s looking like a recession, or worse?
GILLIBRAND: Well, this package we just passed is not nearly enough.
It`s just the next tranche of emergency funding to the places that need it most urgently, to the hospitals, to those people who are unemployed and have no ability to put food on the table for their families, for states, for cities, for small businesses.
And so this was just the next step in trying to deal with the urgent crisis we have in our states, in our country. There will be another package, no doubt. Our governor and our states still has massive holes in their budgets that we need to begin to fill.
That`s going to take even more investment in all states to even meet half of the requirements that these states have. So, we have a long way to go.
And we can start by guaranteeing universal sick days for everybody, national paid leave for everybody, and making sure cities and states can stay aboveboard.
MELBER: And, Senator, finally, another story that got a lot of attention, the relief -- the administration basically relieving a Navy captain who had prior raised alarms about coronavirus, Brett Crozier.
I have got some of the story I can read you here. You know he will keep his rank and remain in the Navy. We want to note that detail. The official reason given was a -- quote -- "loss of trust and confidence," according to officials.
But he was literally the person raising this alarm about the virus. Do you have a view of that development?
GILLIBRAND: Well, I don`t know all the details and the facts that the White House has.
But I have concerns. This White House has not treated whistle-blowers well. He hasn`t treated anyone who stood up to say what`s happening or what needs to be done. And we need truth-tellers right now. And, unfortunately, President Trump continues to tell conspiracies and lies to the American people and continues to undermine the experts who are trying to deal with this unbelievable disaster throughout this country.
We are in the middle of an epidemic. We need truth-tellers, and we need leaders. We need people who can admit that the buck stops with them. And that is not we`re seeing from this president.
MELBER: Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, thank you, as always. Appreciate it.
GILLIBRAND: Thank you.
MELBER: Let me tell you a little bit more about what we`re going to do in the rest of this broadcast. We did some of the fact-checking and the briefing and the policy.
Next, we`re going to get into the front lines of this fight with an ICU physician from Florida`s largest hospital who`s already lost a colleague to the coronavirus.
And, later, how to fight disinformation with some very special guests.
MELBER: Tonight, most Americans are under some kind of stay-at-home order.
But the latest state to join that approach is Florida, where Governor Ron DeSantis implemented the order just within the last day. And Florida is also revealing the cost of inaction. It went from just two cases over a month ago to over 9,000 now, over 100 deaths, including a nurse, who tragically died in Miami over the weekend.
That is one more brave person in America giving up her life to fight this pandemic.
As for testing, Florida lags far behind states with similar populations, like New York. The Sunshine State also facing extra risks because it is home to so many retirees and elderly Americans. About four million seniors live there.
I`m joined now by Dr. Rishi Rattan, a trauma surgeon and ICU physician at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami.
What are you seeing on the ground?
DR. RISHI RATTAN, JACKSON MEMORIAL HOSPITAL: Well, on the ground, what we`re seeing here in Miami-Dade County and at our hospital is the beginnings of a surge over the last week or so.
We`re seeing an increasing number of cases every day, and people are coming in sick of all ages. In fact, the majority of infections here in Florida our work force-age people, adults less than 55.
MELBER: And do you have what you need to get the job done?
RATTAN: We are struggling with PPE, as are other hospitals here in Florida and across the nation, as you have heard from our other guests and people are hearing in the news.
Our hospital is providing us with PPE, but it`s a day-to-day issue of trying to obtain more. We always need more. And we are not currently following, I believe, what the guidelines should be, based on the science and based on the evidence that is being put out by researchers across the world, including in countries that are days to months ahead of us that we can learn from, as well as our own public health experts.
We need more PPE for our front-line workers. And that`s just -- not just doctors and nurses, but also that janitorial staff, grocery store workers, people who are coming into contact with people that could have coronavirus. We all need more protection.
MELBER: What are you seeing in patients that need more intensive care treatment or that are at risk of dying? What is the care situation in plain English?
RATTAN: Well, people may start with mild symptoms, but that often leads to a false sense of security.
What we`re seeing is that, a couple days into the infection, people deteriorate rapidly and go from mild symptoms to life-threatening illness or possibly even dead, requiring full life support.
And the issue becomes, when we are getting more and more people, due to this surge, we are in an accelerating phase. The numbers are increasing exponentially across the country. And when we`re in this situation, we are up -- facing up against a shortage of ventilators.
And there is a chance that we may have to start making decisions about who gets up a ventilator and who doesn`t, who gets that lifesaving treatment and who does not and dies from their illness, if we do not, from the top down, from a national level, start coordinating our response to this virus and getting more equipment.
MELBER: Do you view that as an avoidable -- an avoidable situation?
The situation we`re in right now is the situation we`re in. As, again, other guests have said, we can`t change the past. But, looking forward, we have an opportunity to work together at the national level, at the state level, and at the local level for our front-line workers who are trying to save Americans day in and day out.
And we have an opportunity to prevent the deaths that have already happened, including colleagues that I have worked with side by side taking care of sick patients year after year, and the colleagues that are going to have life...
MELBER: We have been listening to Dr. Rishi Rattan.
I suspect that we may have lost him at one point.
The only other thing I was actually going to ask about and share is a photo that I think we still have. I`m going to read the caption. It`s pretty emotional from some of the doctors there.
It says: "This is how we started our morning today. Our team said a prayer, asking God for guidance and protection while we`re at work and to keep us and our families safe."
That`s from Danny Rodriguez, who works in the E.R. at the Jackson South Medical Center.
Doctor, I know we had some technical difficulties, but I was just showing viewers the photograph of some of your fellow colleagues praying.
I wonder if you have anything you wanted to share about that and how you all are getting through this, when you yourselves are obviously working hard and taking risks to help combat the virus.
RATTAN: We`re trying to soldier on and support each other.
Right now, on the national level, I think it feels like we`re being sent (AUDIO GAP) to battle without armor. (INAUDIBLE) next to us side by side every day, we realize that at the end of this, we may not all still be here, and it`s a very sobering thought. And it makes it difficult to do the work we`re doing, but we`re again trying to come together and work with our state and national leadership and public health experts to try to get PPE out, and the way we do that is to get federal leadership on that and invoke things like the Defense Protection Act broadly so that we can really up the manufacturing of this protective equipment and the life support that will save our loved ones.
MELBER: Dr. Rattan, I think different people come to this pandemic and this crisis in different ways overtime, because it sinks in depending on where you live and how you get your information. Listening to you speak bluntly about the risks your colleagues face, about the idea that like in war, some of you may not return. It`s harrowing.
I appreciate you`re spending some time with us tonight, Doctor.
RATTAN: Thank you. Be safe.
MELBER: Thank you. And good luck to you.
We`re going to fit in a break. Up next, we`re going to discuss something else that`s actually literally dangerous to you even though it`s only informational. That`s all the misinformation, myth and rumor that`s out there. But we have two very special guests that are going to give you tools you need and maybe a ray of hope before our hour is done.
Stay with us.
MELBER: Welcome back.
This has been obviously a challenging time for people trying to learn important medical facts and take informed steps to protect themselves and then consider the wider context. So many people encouraged to find their own subjective political truths these days. Fox News coverage initially played down the pandemic to defend Donald Trump, an angle that morphed today into anchor Brian Kilmeade asking whether virus cures are being held back because some people don`t like Donald Trump.
Now, other misinformation may stem from more old fashioned ignorance. The governor of Georgia said he just learned people can spread coronavirus without showing symptoms, something his fellow government officials have been publicly emphasizing for months.
But those are examples from government and people in the media where it`s literally your job to get the fact and check your sources. But compare that to the Wild West of Internet or casual conversation where rumors of misinformation are spreading fast and they pose a public health threat, even tracking some post online, as it ranged from false stories about infected toilet paper to false hope about a magic cure to basically false alarm panics from warning that are exaggerated or flat out wrong.
Now, the point here tonight in the midst of all this is not to lecture people who are scared and looking for information, especially information about new and complex topics.
Our country is asking people to do basically a bunch of homework on a deadline under stress against the backdrop of flawed systems in our larger education apparatus and our politics as we showed you and in our health care system.
So, to get into this discussion we want to do something different. I`m joined by renowned doctor and president former health adviser to President Obama, Ezekiel Emanuel, and bestselling author and national radio host Charlamagne tha God, host of "The Breakfast Club", one of the most influential talk shows online and on air, broadcasting in 90 U.S. markets.
Great to see both you have. Thanks for doing this.
CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD, RADIO HOST: Ari, what`s happening, my brother?
MELBER: What`s happening? Thank you.
What`s happening, Doctor?
Here we go. Let me start it like this. Charlamagne, I know to be one of the clearest communicators out there. What do you tell people who are sometimes get caught up in the false stories and rumors that could literally endanger their lives?
CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD: I would tell those people that nobody knows what the hell they`re talking about. I would listen to the experts and the experts give the best advice.
I think that advice is to stay home. Social distancing seems to be working. It seems to have worked in different places across the world and being that none of us really know, like that`s the best advice just to get out of the way. Like, you know, people are saying I can go out if I wash my hands. I can go out if I wear mask. I can go out if I wear gloves.
I don`t know if that`s true. Now they`re saying that it`s possible more, you just can get it from having a conversation or just get it from breathing. So, to me, it`s like we`re all in the movie "The Quiet Place", so we`re going to have to learn to survive in silence. And I think that, you know, I`m going to have that silence in my home, because home seems to be the safest place.
So I don`t care about what the president saying. I do have to put a lot of blame on the elected officials because they don`t know, but they`re trying to act like they do, so when you`re the celebrity in chief like the Donald Trump and you`re like Devin Nunes in California and you`re saying you can go out to public restaurants or still be in school. You know, you simply don`t know.
It`s OK to say you don`t know because this virus is a foreign object that we`ve never seen before. We`ve never seen anything like this. We`re all learning on the fly. So, just stay your ass home, please.
MELBER: Stay home and remember what you don`t know.
I mean, Doctor, what do you think of the way Charlamagne puts it because some of what we`re asking people to do cuts against the mood of being so empowered and being able to get your information wherever you want and find things that you agree with or find a piece of advice that you like. Lord knows in politics, people have all these different views and they`re told that they get to have their own views, right?
We have to make sure there aren`t multiple views on this. There`s one view that is medical science and ignoring it could hurt yourself, right, Doctor?
EMANUEL: I agree with you. One of the things I hope learned this and seems like the president has learned this is that science and facts in the end win and if you don`t listen to them, you could end up dead. So, it`s not just all opinion. There are facts in the world, and those facts actually matter.
I think the one little thing I would disagree with Charlamagne was his opening comment. Don`t listen to anyone, and then you backtrack a little and said listen to the experts. I would say there are some clear experts here and one of the things the experts are really I think have been very good about is we don`t know everything.
There`s lot of stuff we don`t know about this virus, like for example, what`s the impact on pregnant women? We don`t know. We haven`t had enough time to know it`s impact on pregnant women and its impact on the newborn baby. It appears that if you`re in the late stages of birth, it doesn`t have a good effect, but we don`t know about the early stages.
So the first thing is to be humble and modest. We don`t know and don`t believe all the things you`re hearing out there. There are a few very, very clear items and again, I think Charlamagne put them well.
Staying at home is a good thing, all right? Washing your hands is a good thing. Staying six feet away from other people, not your intimate family, other people is a good thing. When you go out, wear a mask.
Go out occasionally and stay far away from people. Walk in a park or walk along a sidewalk that has no other people because otherwise, you`ll go crazy at home and that also is not good for your mental health.
Don`t believe --
MELBER: I hear you --
EMANUEL: Snake oil salesmen come out of the wood work all the time in these circumstance, whether it`s, you know, vitamin C or it`s chloroquine or whatever. At the moment, we don`t have proof on anything, so don`t take anything thinking you`re protected because that`s just garbage.
MELBER: Well, and you mentioned mental health and all the obvious logical anxiety and other stimuli here. Charlamagne wrote a book going through some of his experiences with that and for Charlamagne, first, and then the doctor, I want to play Dr. Fauci who was just on Showtime`s late night show after going on with Steph Curry, the basketball star, it`s really striking to see government officials, which is what he is, in addition to being a medical expert, taking untraditional means, because for this to work, as I understand it, according to the experts, it`s not like most people can do this well.
We really need communities where their hot spots for everyone to do well so people aren`t unknowingly share it. So, first, to Charlamagne, and the doctor, take a look at Dr. Fauci on this late night program.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I know you deal with professional documents, real numbers and real science. Have you come across this hoax about this flu -- the coronavirus is actually caused by 5G antennas?
DR. ANTHONY FAUCI, DIRECTOR, NIAID: No, I haven`t, thank goodness. As you guys know better than anybody, social media can really be advantageous for the spread of important information but it certainly can be damaging for the spread of a lot of garbage.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD: Well, first of all, that`s not just any late night show, that`s "Desus & Mero", that`s the guys "Desus & Mero" (INAUDIBLE) boys all day, OK?
But, no, I like Dr. Fauci. The reason I like Dr. Fauci because he clearly seems to know what he`s talking about and you have to meet people where they are. So, if it`s so much misinformation, you know, whether it`s coming from social media and whether it`s coming from, you know, our president, it`s good when Dr. Fauci sits with Steph Curry on Instagram live or he goes and sits with "Desus & Mero", because that`s said, he`s meeting people where they are.
We need real information, and that`s why I said, you know, that -- to me, that`s the people I listen to. I listen to the experts on this. You know, I`m a god-fearing person so I believe in GOD but I listen to the CDC, and if the CDC tell me to stay home, that`s exactly what I`m going to do.
I heard Dr. Fauci tell us to stay home a billion times in the past week or so.
MELBER: GOD, CDC, you can say, Charlamagne, that Dr. Fauci is competing to be the GOAT, greatest of all time, at least when it comes to renowned medical leaders.
CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD: Yes.
MELBER: Dr. Emanuel, as our medical expert, you get the last word here.
EMANUEL: I`ve learned -- I have known Dr. Fauci for 25 years, and I`ve learned a lot from him. And one of the most important things is Tony is very clear when he knows something and he knows it`s right, he`ll tell you and if he doesn`t know, he`ll also tell you, and that`s really important in this moment. We should not overhype anything and we should be very, very clear.
And I do think he was quite clear, you know, social media can be a force for good here and it could also be a force for evil and get people to do things that could really endanger their life. And it`s very, very important that you listen carefully but only to trusted sources of truth and science here and not to people who aren`t actually basing what they`re saying on the facts.
EMANUEL: It was very disheartening, as you played the governor of Georgia saying, I didn`t know -- people who feel normal could A, be infected and B, pass on the virus. What rock have you been under? I mean, really.
EMANUEL: It`s been all over and you`ve got to really pay attention and that`s what is critical here. Pay attention to the facts. And you can`t -- Charlamagne said, you can do a lot worse than listening to Dr. Tony Fauci.
MELBER: Well, there you go, and to really fact check, look at your sources, look at CDC, just because something is on the internet or somebody you like said it, doesn`t mean you can repeat it. We owe that to each other. As we get through this as a society. This was a special kind of conversation and I feel more focused because of it.
So my thanks to Dr. Emanuel and Charlamagne tha God, good to see you both.
CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD: Ari, thank you. Dr. Emanuel, thank you.
EMANUEL: Thank you for having us. Nice to meet you, Charlamagne.
CHARLAMAGNE THA GOD: Same here, Dr. Emanuel. I`ll be listening to you now, too. You`re a trusted professional.
MELBER: There it is. Making relationships happen.
EMANUEL: Monday night.
MELBER: We`ll be in touch with both of you and we will be right back.
MELBER: Our colleague NBC News correspondent Janis Mackey Frayer spend seven weeks covering the coronavirus pandemic when it was first hitting in Wuhan, Japan, and then Japan, and the U.K. and China. And when she returned to China, she had to isolate for 14 days, but then it was another 49 days total apart from her family.
Now, Janis is sharing this reunion with her 6-year-old son.
We are wishing many, many more reunions like that to people touched by this around the world.
That does it for our special coverage. I`m Ari Melber signing off. But don`t go anywhere, "ALL IN WITH CHRIS HAYES" starts now.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED. END