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Testing Delays, Missed Chances Set Back U.S. Coronavirus Response; Dow Futures Fall While Asian Markets Struggle; China's President Xi Visits Virus Epicenter of Wuhan; Trump Announces New Event Despite Coronavirus Fears, Biden, Sanders Cancel Theirs. Aired 12-1a ET

Aired March 11, 2020 - 00:00   ET




CHRIS CUOMO, CNN HOST (voice-over): All right. We have a key race alert. You can see behind me Washington, a dead heat. Literally to the 10th of a percentage point. Technically Joe Biden is 60 votes ahead. You don't get closer than that in a state like that.

Idaho, you see a little bit of a different story, 42 percent in. Too soon to call. Polls closed at 11:00 Eastern time.

And North Dakota, once again, you see the story on the wall. We're watching these states.

The big headline for tonight is what Joe Biden has achieved already. Put it up there. Michigan, everybody was watching. But as you're going to learn in just a couple of minutes, it wasn't just about tonight and Bernie versus Biden.

It was looking at it versus 2016 because, in 2016, we got a big indication about how the Democrats were going to look in the general. We ignored it then. We won't tonight.

Missouri, he also won.

While people were talking about Mississippi yesterday, why does Mississippi matter almost as much as Michigan?

Because when you're doing proportional allotment of delegates, that kind of win that he got in that state can give him a cushion that it may be very difficult for Bernie Sanders to overcome.

Let's start with Bernie Sanders: Colorado, Nevada, New Hampshire, Utah, Vermont; he has not won any states yet tonight. We all know the story of last Super Tuesday was really the big blow to the campaign.

Then you see here on the Biden side, a long list: Alabama, Arkansas, Maine, Massachusetts, you can read. The big win last week was Texas.

Tonight it was Michigan. It's not just about the delegates at play. It's about what it will say about his strength in the general and versus Bernie Sanders. We'll keep our eye on those races. Let's go to Phil Mattingly and understand why things happened the way they did.

Start macro, in terms of the state of the race. Then we'll get into the specific high points.

PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN U.S. CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Top line, 745 for Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders at 609 delegates. Joe Biden is stretching out his lead. The reason why he's stretching out his lead, these are pledged delegates. Our team is very good at this. They take their time. They do it very carefully.

CUOMO: Just to remind people, when they see these numbers and say, it's not that many, there are millions of people who are going to vote, why is it so hard to catch up with delegates?

MATTINGLY: One is Joe Biden is competitive everywhere. Two, he's winning everywhere as well.

The other thing is what's coming up. In the weeks ahead, particularly next Tuesday, Florida, Illinois, Ohio, all states expected to be strong showings for Joe Biden. The expectation is it's only going to get better for the Biden campaign.

This was the Tuesday that Bernie Sanders needed to take advantage because of how the map was set up.

The primary reason, where was Bernie Sanders for most of the week?

It was Michigan. Look at Michigan right now. I want to show you what happened back in 2016, look at all the light blue. The light blue is Bernie Sanders. The light blue is Bernie Sanders leading to this shocking upset of Hillary Clinton.

CUOMO: When a week earlier, polls had him losing in double digits to Clinton.

What changed?

MATTINGLY: We'll flip you back over to 2020. The counties right now that Joe Biden is winning and winning in a major, major way are the counties you need to win if you're a Democrat in this state.

Wayne County: Joe Biden with a very large margin here.

But 130,115 votes in right now, only 77 percent reporting. Hillary Clinton won this county back in 2016. Keep in mind that 130,000 number. Hillary Clinton had 165,000. Joe Biden is going to surpass that going forward.

If you tick around, not just into Wayne County but the suburbs, Oakland County, look at that margin, 22 points right there, 138,000 votes. We're seeing turnout, not just in the urban areas.

The fact that Joe Biden is bringing out the coalition from 2018, Joe Biden is bringing out those suburban voters to go along with the urban voters inside the cities to go along with also some of the urban voters out here. You want to talk about what are Bernie Sanders' strengths, where does

he do well?

He does well in the youth vote.


MATTINGLY: Washtenaw County: this is the home of the University of Michigan, this is Ann Arbor, this is a liberal bastion. Joe Biden 100 percent reporting, winning in Washtenaw County.

In 2016, Sanders won it handily. Joe Biden is winning, OK. Let's move back to where Michigan State is. Bernie Sanders winning but narrowly.

Flip back into 2016, Bernie Sanders won it going away by 11 points.

There's two things: the coalition that Joe Biden has put together that we really saw and develop back last week is one thing.

But the other thing is the margins. He's able to keep Bernie Sanders' margins down in the counties that Bernie Sanders did very well in in 2016. And the counties Joe Biden had to do well in, he's blowing Bernie out of the water.

CUOMO: There are two different reasons to be paying attention tonight, other than just the horse race and the romantic attachment that some people have to politics. This was the night where Bernie had to shine and this was the state where he had to do it. This would be the metaphor effect for him to say, if I can win in places like this, I can beat Trump.

You had to look at tonight, if Joe Biden wins, he has to win in a way that covered what we saw with Hillary Clinton in 2016. It's hard to know what's going to happen next. It's really easy to explain what just happened in this business.

But with Clinton in 2016, if we looked at Michigan, it was a road map of what was going to happen to Democrats in the general. Bernie Sanders, who is no Donald Trump in terms of his tactics at campaigning, but he beat her by 15 with white working class voters.

She didn't get college educated, African American voters to come out. That was the window into what was going to happen in the general.

Did Joe Biden do enough in those areas enough to make the case that there won't be a collapse in the general?

MATTINGLY: Everybody looked at Michigan in 2016 and thought this is a huge story for Bernie Sanders. What it should have been was a glaring red siren for Democrats going into November. Take a look at the counties that Donald Trump flipped in 2016.


MATTINGLY: Every county that he flipped and what used to be a key component of the blue wall, every county that you see is a county that Donald Trump flipped from Barack Obama back in 2012.

Look at the colors, dark blue, Biden blue, Biden winning every one of those counties and winning them handily. That's is what Democrats want to see.

Also the turnout as well. Turnout in this state significantly higher. We don't have final numbers now and I'm not going to say what I think they're going to be. But those are the types of things Democrats want when they look to Michigan, when they think about what they want come November.

CUOMO: You made it easy enough that even I get it. Thank you, brother. I'll check back with you in a second.

All right, so we have the numbers. Now the challenge is to put them in the context of the state of play.

This was, David, as it's shaping up right now, this was a message moment for Biden on a night that Bernie needed to make the statement.

DAVID CHALIAN, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: In two weeks, right. As you're talking about, those were the numbers of where the votes were in the counties.

In the exit polls, you see the Biden strength in places he needed to show strength and you see him eroding Sanders' strength in places that Sanders was looking to make his pitch to voters as to why he is best equipped to beat Trump.

Take a look at this deep dive in Michigan in the exit polls. Among the voters who say they're looking for a candidate who can beat Trump, 57 percent of the electorate, overwhelmingly, they're Joe Biden, 63 percent to 32 percent. So he's winning the voters by 2:1, Chris, that want a Donald Trump defeater.

The electability argument, look at the black vote, 66 percent to 28 percent from Sanders. So that is just a huge margin there among the black vote.

Main line Democrats, right, this is a huge Biden strength. He wins them by 20 points. They're two-thirds of the electorate.

This last one I think tells the whole story of Michigan and the whole story of the night: white, non-college educated men, the working class white male worker in Michigan, this is the story of how Sanders won Michigan, of why Trump flipped Michigan.

It was a dead heat, 44 percent to 44 percent. They made up 17 percent of the electorate. Bernie Sanders won this group of voters four years ago by 22 points.


CHALIAN: That 22-point advantage gone tonight.

CUOMO: It's very interesting to look at it through the numbers. Obviously, we have to look at it through the lens of -- I guess you

have to do it two ways. One is what does it mean for Bernie. Biden checked the box tonight. He was on the prompter. He was measured in his message. He was very polite.

He reached out to Bernie and those people. He was a little somber because the country is in a really tough moment. This election is actually not our concern right now. Somebody in the hall, he is like I'm not worried about people, I'm worried about doorknobs right now. That's where we are.

Biden did what he had to do.

Bernie, what does this make his options after tonight?

He didn't speak tonight.

ELAINA PLOTT, "THE NEW YORK TIMES": He didn't speak tonight. I think he has to pray at this point that he delivers in a debate on Sunday.

CUOMO: You think he does have to debate?

PLOTT: I think he does.

What are his options otherwise, Chris?

I think what he's proving in a more macro sense is that white progressives still have not figured out how to tailor a message that appeals to older black voters, who are such a crucial part of the electorate not just in South Carolina. We've got Georgia next week.

For the movement, I think it's a huge glaring siren for them. If he can't articulate that message in a Sunday debate, I don't know what that means for Bernie Sanders but also all these other candidates in his wake, who hope to present a message like he does on the road down the line.

CHALIAN: In terms of speaking tonight I think is an enormous development. Not that I think he is getting out of the race. He may very well go through this debate. But Bernie Sanders is really savvy about the media. He understands, when you cede the stage to someone on a night like tonight, you don't do so willy-nilly.

You do so deliberately. It fits with his pattern, no matter how tough he gets on Joe Biden, whether it's the Iraq War or trade, Medicare for all, he has taken pains every day of this campaign to say, my friend Joe, I'm going to support him if he's the nominee; he'll support me if I'm the nominee.

CUOMO: Do you think after tonight reasonable minds around Bernie are saying to him, I don't see a path?

CHALIAN: Well, if they are truly reasonable minds, they are certainly saying there isn't a clear path here. Now listen, it's not zero path but it is not a clear path and it's not a truly viable path.

The numbers, yes, could he go onto a winning splurge and get 54 percent of the remaining delegates?

He would have to do dramatically better than he's been doing. It's not a likely scenario, especially next week those four big states.


PLOTT: He's dead in the water in Florida. I was just in Miami-Dade doing a story about how Trump is actually competitive in South Florida in November because of the overwhelming fear of a Bernie Sanders' nomination among Cuban Americans, among Venezuelan Americans.

That is the biggest state we have until late April. If Biden can clean up the way he's supposed to, I don't see what the path forward looks like for Bernie.

CUOMO: Let's go over to Don.

It's a tricky situation. Bernie represents a movement.

What do the standings tonight say about the status of this movement, how does he best manifest this in the party, how much of this becomes about the ego of can we still do this?

It is arguably the hardest night of the campaign for Bernie Sanders.

DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: He's not speaking tonight, so that says it all.

Beware of how you treat Bernie, DNC, and also Joe Biden supporters, because he has an army.

I asked Mark Preston -- obviously it's a big night for Joe Biden. We're going to talk about that. But just the last question that he asked David Chalian over there about a path for Bernie Sanders, he said there's not zero path. I don't know about that.

But what do you think?

Is there a path for Bernie Sanders?

MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICAL DIRECTOR: I think you've got to look at two paths: is there a mathematical path for him to become the nominee?

Based on the math that we're seeing that's not the case.

LEMON: But there is the movement path.

PRESTON: But there is the movement path.


LEMON: You're saying mathematical path, no?

PRESTON: Not as of tonight, no.


PRESTON: Even though I failed math, I know that the numbers are the numbers, right?

More importantly, though, for him, though, I think the movement can live on. I think the next few days are going to be very important about how he will become the leader, continue to be the leader of that movement.


PRESTON: Go back to 2016. He lost to Hillary Clinton. A lot of his ideas got adopted by the Democratic Party. I think that if he's careful and he's smart, that he can still have an incredible amount of influence moving forward.

LEMON: But the movement can go on but you said you don't believe mathematically -- so where does this race go from here?

JEN PSAKI, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I think it's clear that Joe Biden is on the path to the nomination at this point in time. But he has a couple of tricky weeks as well ahead of him.

The determination of whether or not he'll win the White House could be set right now over the next couple of weeks. He has to both shift internally to running a general election campaign or thinking about that and thinking about where he's going to invest in hiring staff and developing a strategy.

But he also has to be very careful about how he engages, how he reaches out to and how he embraces Bernie Sanders and his supporters because, if you look back at 2016 -- and I was sitting in the White House at the time and we made many royal mistakes in this regard, in that we did not take the Sanders movement seriously.

We did not see him doing as well as he was going to do in the primary. President Obama didn't interview too early in the process, where he kind of gave an indication of where his support would be. That was something that we suffered from for months to come.

So Joe Biden needs to take exactly the tone he took tonight. But his supporters, his campaign, everybody needs to take that tone. Nobody should be pushing Bernie Sanders to get out of the race. People should be giving him his own time, let him come to his own decision.

If it's a month from now, maybe we'll feel differently but for right now, give him his space and time he deserves --


SCOTT JENNINGS, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: I think Jen has a really good point. It's backed up by something I noticed in the Michigan exit polls.

If Joe Biden won the nomination, would you be enthusiastic, 31 percent. If Bernie Sanders won the nomination, would you be enthusiastic, 39


To Jen's point, there are a huge number of people really excited about the prospect of Bernie Sanders being the nominee. Sanders is crushing Biden among young people. So what the Biden folks cannot do is ignore that there are going to be people who are unhappy with this primary result.


JENNINGS: How do you get them to show up and keep participating when they were clearly enthusiastic about their guy and maybe not as much about the prospect of supporting someone else?

LEMON: So 18-29-year-olds in the exit polls went big time for Bernie Sanders. The question is, though, he based his movement really in large part on young people, which traditionally young people don't show up to the polls. If you look at the exit polls, they didn't show up this time.

Does it really matter that much?

ANDREW GILLUM, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I would say that Bernie Sanders' campaign did exist with more than just young people. In fact, young people didn't necessarily have a demonstrable increase in their participation so far in the primary process.

Yet Bernie Sanders is sitting with over 500 delegates as we approach four or so months out from the convention. We can't discount that.


LEMON: There's still a ways to go even though we're saying it doesn't look like a mathematical path.

GILLUM: My argument would be more about counting the people who are behind him, who are motivated by him, who are inspired by him out. I think the vice president does have some work to do. This isn't to pander to Sanders supporters, this is to say, I see you, I hear you, the issues you're concerned about will be reflected in my platform.

LEMON: Exactly.

GILLUM: That's the way we do this.


GILLUM: I don't think there has to be substance there. There has to be substance there because these people are feeling not just the Bern but the heat of the economy, the heat of health care, the heat of student debt and they want someone who is going to speak to that.

The tone the vice president took tonight was the right one. He was magnanimous but he's got to carry that forward and translate it into policy. LAURA BARRON-LOPEZ, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: The big take-away tonight

is his theory, his entire argument will be that he can reshape the electorate and he has not been able to do that.

Biden has created a coalition that looks Obama-like but the biggest missing piece is young voters. The question is whether or not he can start to address them more, start to also address Latinos more because that's another one of Biden's weaknesses and they will be key in the general.

So because of the fact that President Trump and his campaign has made clear they are going to try to win this on the margins, if Biden is the Democratic nominee, that campaign has to start talking about winning those other voters on the margins, too.


BARRON-LOPEZ: We're seen them slowly but surely addressing that. They decided, in the leadup to the next contest on March 17th, they're trying to invest more in outreach to the Latino vote.

LEMON: One of the questions I wanted to ask you, is the Democratic Party ready to move on and focus on Donald Trump?

But I think a better question is, is Bernie Sanders ready to move on and have the party focus on Donald Trump?

I think that's where the question lies and the answer lies really.

Listen, Joe Biden speaking to a crowd of not many tonight, right?

We're going to talk about that. The other big story tonight we're following, that's the coronavirus pandemic.


ROSEMARY CHURCH, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Hello, everyone. I'm Rosemary Church. We will return to CNN's special coverage of the Democratic presidential race but first an update on the coronavirus pandemic.

Turkey is reporting its first case of the novel coronavirus and Panama its first death.

In Italy, more than 600 have died and more than 10,000 are infected.

Australia has extended its travel ban to Italy and Portugal is suspending flights to Italy for two weeks. The Italian government has extended a lockdown from the worst-affected regions in the north to the entire country.

CNN's Ben Wedeman reports now on how the lockdown is being imposed.


BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SR. INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Even though all sporting e events have been canceled, even though weddings, baptisms and funerals have been banned to avoid any social gatherings, what we are seeing is still people are moving around.

Still people are trying to maintain the semblance of a normal life. But normal life is also being impacted by the fact that business has basically almost come to a screeching halt. All bars and restaurants are supposed to be closed between 6:00 am and 6:00 pm.

Apparently, some restaurants are still delivering food. They are functioning but they simply are not open to the public. We had the opportunity here in Bologna to speak with several shopkeepers.

Some of them said they would rather see a 20-day shutdown of all businesses in the entire country, with the exception of things like supermarkets, just to get the situation under control and stabilize the economy.

And perhaps bring tourists back, bring business back, because the situation economically and from a health standpoint is becoming critical.


CHURCH: Airlines are taking a major hit as a result of the spread of the coronavirus. To help alleviate the pressure, the European Commission has proposed suspending the rule requiring airlines to use 80 percent of their scheduled landing and takeoff slots.


URSULA VAN DER LEYEN, PRESIDENT-ELECT, EUROPEAN COMMISSION: We want to make it easier for airlines to keep their airport slots, even if they don't operate flights in those slots because of the decline in traffic.

This is a temporary measure and this temporary measure helps both our industry but also our environment. It will relieve the pressure on the aviation industry and, in particular, on smaller airline companies. But it will also decrease emissions by avoiding the so-called ghost flights.


CHURCH: A look at Asia markets. After Tuesday's rebound, they are mixed. You can see Japan's Nikkei down more than 1 percent. The Seoul KOSPI lost 1.43 percent. That is still in motion.

Market volatility is extending to U.S. futures. They are down after Wall Street's rally on Tuesday and that rebound followed a historic decline the day earlier.

That is a check of the headlines. Now it is back to CNN's special coverage of the Democratic presidential race.

(MUSIC PLAYING) CUOMO: All right. We're back with our special coverage. Of course, covering the election, it would be absurd to ignore the context this election is happening in. And that is about coronavirus.

Just moments ago, the pandemic reached another milestone. It's 1,000 cases that we have confirmed here in the United States. We have 31 people who have lost their lives. The numbers are going to keep getting bigger, period. The numbers are going to go in one direction only for many weeks to come and that's up.

And there is good reason and bad reason for that. We'll get into both.


CUOMO: Let's start with CNN White House correspondent Boris Sanchez.

It's good to have you. Boris, what is the reaction to the numbers?

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Chris, the White House so far has been very much focused on the economic response to coronavirus. President Trump on Capitol Hill today trying to sell these ideas for an economic stimulus, something that Republican lawmakers have told CNN they're not too enthusiastic about.

The president doesn't seem to be too worried about the more immediate effects of the virus. He acknowledged today that he hadn't been tested for coronavirus even after he came into close proximity to lawmakers now under self-quarantine for exposure to a coronavirus patient at CPAC.

The president tending a number of fundraisers with hundreds of people, shaking a lot of hands, something that federal officials have told CNN they would like him to stop doing. Today the vice president was asked about this. He said it's effectively something you just have to do. Listen.


MIKE PENCE, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: As the president has said, in our line of work, you shake hands when someone wants to shake your hand. I expect the president will continue to do that. I'll continue to do it.


SANCHEZ: Never mind that the CDC has suggested that people over 60 should not be shaking hands and they should not be attending events with large crowds. Today the Trump campaign announcing they're holding an event in Milwaukee on March 19th, Catholics for Trump, with more campaign events set to be announced in the near future.

CUOMO: Again, this is mixed messaging. Mike Pence is a very good sidekick for the president of the United States. He doesn't understand the science. And what he just said there, in this line of work, you shake hands. No. In this line of work, as we both know, you lead. When you want

people to be safe, you should be safe. The irony is lost on none of us that, until he became president, Donald Trump wouldn't touch you if he didn't know you, let alone shake your hand.

SANCHEZ: A germophobe.


CUOMO: There is a better set of messages to give right now. They're talking about that because they don't want to talk about the real reason people keep getting surprised here. We're going to do that right now.

Boris, thank you very much for being with us tonight.

Elizabeth Cohen is in Atlanta.

Thank you for joining us, Elizabeth. Let's talk about the hard reality about why people keep getting surprised by numbers here and it's a one-word answer: testing. They knew about this. They didn't prepare for it. There may have been politics involved and how fast they wanted to ramp it up. Now they're behind.

Delays in testing, not may have, it set the United States back against coronavirus, most importantly, Elizabeth, from a messaging perspective because the numbers keep jumping because we are behind the curve of the spread.

ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN SR. MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Right, Chris, exactly. It was not so long ago that I can remember being on these teleconferences for the media from the CDC, where they said, we found one more case here, we found another case here, we're going to get their family quarantined. We're going to try our best to snuff this out.

But they were counting it single case by single case. I think now there is a new era in this outbreak, where we will not be counting it single case by single case because it is so much bigger.

But I think that gives you a little bit of a feeling for how the picture that we had of it was not realistic. We were thinking single cases when, in fact, there were so many more cases out there that we didn't know about because we were not testing.

If you don't test, you don't know what's out there. You get someone flying in from China. They have coronavirus, maybe they get their husband or wife sick. Oh, we found a case. But it was a much bigger scale than that. That is only being recognized very, very recently.

CUOMO: Look, we know part of the reason was that the president came out and said we're only going to have a few cases and it's going to be gone. That tied the hands of the people at the CDC and the other health agencies.

Because we know what happens, if you want to stay and right now they know they need to be there because they know from a public policy standpoint they're going to have to be here for months dealing with this.

But if they cross the president, they're out. That's a tough spot to be in.

One more question for you, China and South Korea are still really outpacing us with testing.

Is it true that one of the reasons for that is that they have a simpler test protocol?

And if that is true, why aren't we just using theirs?

COHEN: Certainly the rollout of the testing was much simpler in those countries. As far as the protocol itself, it may have been that they were better at communicating to labs how to use it.

In the United States there was a lot of confusion. There shouldn't have been because these are labs that do this all the time. Labs were told, use these three reagents.

No, well, you can use fewer than that; no, we want you to use more than that. So it's not necessarily the simplicity of the test.

A lot of this had to do with the instructions that were being given.


And the experts that I've talked to said, Look, why was there this confusion? Testing for this virus is not tough. People test for viruses all the time.


COHEN: We test for flu. We test for all sorts of things. It was the communication about how to use the test that was so problematic.

CUOMO: States were kept from doing it early on, and I was argue for bad reason.

Look, perspective is important and how we got here, so don't repeat it going forward. But the reality is, and Elizabeth, you've been helping me with these types of questions for so long, we're going to hear about tons and tons of more cases. That's the way this works.

The same thing with influenza. There are different risks with this. There's a different fear of lethality with this, and that's why we're seeing more harsh preventative measures.

But Elizabeth, thank you very much for giving me the take on this. Anything else people need to know?

COHEN: Yes, well, you know, I want to make a point about something that you said, because you are right on the nose about this. There is a group at Johns Hopkins that looked at, gee, how many people came from China, from Wuhan with coronavirus in December and early to mid- January, before any of us were really talking about this.

And they found that there were -- there were people hat were coming, and they were infected. And we never knew it, and we never -- this country, the U.S. never reported on it, but they were coming in. They weren't detected, because we weren't testing because we weren't on it.

CUOMO: Right. And look, one of the things we have to change, Elizabeth Cohen -- thank you so much for being part of the solution -- because the solution is information and transparency for you guys. So you know how to manage your reality. That's what this is about. It's not about some bogeyman. It's about the unknown. And we break that down with information and transparency. Elizabeth, thank you.

And we're not just doing it here at home. You have to understand what's going on all over the world to understand what's going to happen here, what we have to deal with and economically, as well.

So we have unique capabilities at CNN to provide worldwide resources, and we're going to show them off to you right now.

We hit the White House. We hit Atlanta. That's easy for us. We Re going to go to London now with John Defterios, because we're going to anticipate the markets, where they'll be here in a few hours. Obviously, it's happening now overnight in London.

John, thank you very much. What are you seeing about the reaction? It's been going up and down. A little bit of that is opportunism within the professional traders. A little bit is them playing with volatility. And a little bit is what they still fear may come.

JOHN DEFTERIOS, CNN EMERGING MARKETS EDITOR: Well, I think it's the fear factor, certainly, Chris, that's playing out right now.

We see most of the Asian markets who have the first action and reaction to what we're seeing out of the White House with losses of one to nearly two percent on the day. It's not an incredible sell-off.

But I think there's a real danger here for the U.S. president, and that is mismanaging expectations. The last word we had in global markets is that there are going to be a major package on the table from the White House, with the airline sector, the hospitality, the cruise line industry, even talking about perhaps a bailout for the U.S. shale industry, and the oil and gas patches around the United States there right now.

That didn't emerge, and as a result after that near 5 percent gain we saw on Wall Street, right across the board, after that horrendous sell-off that we saw on Monday, we see that Dow futures, S&P futures, NASDAQ futures are down to two to two and a half percent.

You know, Chris, this is very interesting. If you look at it from a global perspective, this was the coronavirus like a black swan that came from nowhere. Donald Trump thought he'd get perhaps 2 percent growth going into the election in 2020.

We're talking about a real threat of recession hitting in the third quarter. Global growth was supposed to be above 3 percent, which is pretty tired after ten years into the economic cycle. I know to Americans it sounds pretty reasonable. That's been cut in half because of the coronavirus. There's no global demand.

You see what's happening in Italy, and things are starting to freeze up. It is a major threat to the president, and you can't go through with denial. The Federal Reserve has been cutting interest rates. They're going to be doing so again. But that's not enough to lift growth. You have to actually have a clear blueprint for stimulus.

And Senate Republicans are, interesting enough, Chris, pushing back against the president because of the trillion-dollar deficit he ran up in 2019.

CUOMO: That's right. That's the trick. The trick for the Republicans is they let the president do something that is anathema to conservative fiscal ideology, which is an unpaid tax cut --

DEFTERIOS: You're right.

CUOMO: -- with the re-introduced religion of trickle-down economics. OK? And an illusion it surely is.

So now, they have a huge deficit. He's thinking bailout packages. They don't know where they're going to get the money. That is going to create political anxiety.

So now we add this other piece that the president was selling as a good thing for Americans. Look at those gas prices going down. He's right: Americans are uniquely gas price sensitive, but when it is a function of an oil war, that's different. What do we see on that front?


DEFTERIOS: Well, what an incredible point, because getting 10 cents off a gallon in the United States seems like peanuts if you think about it in the wider context when you have the threat of a recession at your doorstep.

This is very complex, but the U.S. hit 13 million barrels a day for the first time in the first quarter, but they've run up huge debts in the shale patch, whether it's Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and New Mexico and North Dakota. And they're paying the piper right now, Chris. Wall Street's punishing those oil and gas companies, who have high debts.

At the same time, we have a U.S. ally in Saudi Arabia threatening a price war here, cutting prices and promising to put another two and a half million barrels on the market next month.

It's extraordinary, during the time of a coronavirus, that we have a price war and a battle between Saudi Arabia and Russia, so much so that President Trump called the crown prince of Saudi Arabia in the last 48 hours to say, Hey, hold on here. Is this the right strategy or not? Even the Department of Energy put out a statement saying they don't like the state actors manipulating the market.

Again, if you look at it from a political standpoint, Chris, this is very risky for the president, because it's 10 million jobs linked to the energy sector throughout the United States. It could be damaging. You played it up. Thirteen million barrels a day. But high debt and we have to crash down to $30 a barrel, and hold it, they will pay a very serious price this year.

CUOMO: And surprise, surprise, who else is involved? Oh, yes, Putin. Putting pressure on the situation, not wanting to go along with Saudi Arabia.


CUOMO: Boy, how odd when he knows that's bad for the United States. I guess all that respect the president paid him is paying off right now.

David Culver [SIC], thank you for very much your perspective in London. Now, let's go to -- to David Culver. OK? He is in Shanghai.

David, the first thing I want to ask you. Just peel the reporter, person on the ground, living life there? What is your sense --


CUOMO: -- of where China is in terms of getting a handle on spread?

CULVER: Well, right now, we are 12 hours ahead of you for the day, but we are 7 weeks ahead of you in the midst of this outbreak crisis. And you really feel that, because it's interesting, having been on the air here on CNN and sharing this story now for more than a month. And you begin to see the progress that has been made.

And I've got to tell you, honestly, we hear about the testing and the concerns that are going on in the U.S. It was not perfect here at the start. We reported on some of the major issues that are happening within the epicenter of all of this, within Wuhan and within Hubei province. And there were delays, and there were a lack of testing kits.

What changed was when the pressure was put on the central government, they pushed out the local government, and they said, we're stepping in. We're taking control.

They treated this as a military operation, Chris, and President Xi Jinping himself took command. And again, it wasn't perfect. You've angered a lot of people. But then they started putting a lot of the resources towards getting the testing to the folks right at the epicenter of this, getting the medical personnel in place and, more than that, getting the protective gear for those medical personnel in place.

What we're seeing now is a moment where you're looking around, and you're thinking, perhaps they're trying to get back to normal. You're starting to see restaurants reopen. You're starting to see businesses come back online. And it's simple things, but it's something that this country is desperately eager for. And the people who live here are certainly coming forward and putting that demand in.

CUOMO: And listen -- and we're going to be there soon. Hopefully, we'll be there sooner than China because of scale, but we never know. But having this simple pleasures of freedom will be a huge relief to a lot of Americans.

Now, one of the things that they're doing in China, I understand, is that there is a real-time check-in that they're doing with cell phone technology. What is it? What's your experience with it? And what is the net effect?

CULVER: They are tracking all of us. And it's always believed here that you're being tracked, but their reasoning is for health purposes. And that's why they're doing this.

And it's looking like something like this. Let me show you. There is a QR code, and this is my personal one. Everybody who's out and about here in China has one. You get one when you come into a city like Shanghai. You're getting off the train. We checked in, registered. That was the first place that we checked in at.

Now when I go to a shopping mall, when I go to a hotel, certain restaurants, you're scanning this QR code. They're tracking you, and you figure, OK, they can do that without the QR code, because they can figure where you are by your mobile number, which they can.

But they're using this big data also to figure out where the exposure might be, because containment is two parts here. You've got the extreme lockdown, which quite frankly, I don't think the U.S. and other countries can do because of localities that will disagree with this, versus the central government here that just swoops in and makes it happen. And that's sealing off neighborhoods, telling folks, You can't leave your home. You're staying in there for what's been nearly 50 days. We'll get basic necessities to you.

But the other part of containment is tracking. And so that's where they can say, OK, where has David been? He's been to that mall. There's also been an exposure there. We should quarantine him and everyone who was with him. And they use that big data to do it, Chris.


CUOMO: All right, David. Listen, I have to tell you, your reporting has been great through this, especially because of the perspective you have in living it there, and what you're seeing change in your own day-to-day existence. That's probably most relevant to Americans.

We do not know how to deal with quarantine and what it's like and what it feels like, you know, to go day-to-day with different restrictions. So thank you for the reporting. Stay safe, you and the team.

And this is all happening in a time that we're starting to see a message shift here, because you're starting to hear the Republicans, especially Trump Co., calling it the Wuhan or the Chinese coronavirus. They're looking for someone to blame. That's going to be part of the story. You'll be first on that, as well. David Culver, thank you.

All right. So coming up, the Biden and Sanders campaigns both responded to the coronavirus outbreak tonight. They took a very different approach than President Trump. We'll cover what that means right after this.



DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: And we're back on this very important primary night. Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders both canceling campaign rallies in Ohio. The Democrats cited their concern for public health as the coronavirus outbreak spreads.

President Trump, though, took a very, very different approach, announcing a new reelection election campaign event in Milwaukee next week.

So let's discuss now with the folks around the table. Interesting. Because listen, we've got three older people, who are -- one is president right now, two of them vying to be president. They all fall into the high-risk category. Bernie Sanders has an underlying condition or a pre-existing condition.

So I think most people will think that the Democrats followed the guidelines of what our health officials have been saying. President Trump is not, holding the rally. What do you think? Should he hold a rally?

JEN PSAKI, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: No, of course he shouldn't. I mean, he is the president of the United States. He's responsible for, obviously, keeping people calm but also not kind of papering over the risks here.

And there are public health officials, non-partisan, not political people in a number of states across the country who are saying there shouldn't be large gatherings. People should work from home. This is sending a different message. And it's frankly dangerous.

LEMON: By the way, the event is going to be called Trump announcing (ph) Catholics for Trump Coalition, March 19 at the Wisconsin Center. Large campaign stop.

MARK PRESTON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, you know what the irony of that is, as being a Catholic -- not a great Catholic but a Catholic nonetheless -- is there's guidance now going out where, if you are to take the host, they don't want you to take it in the month anymore. You take it by the hand. People aren't drinking the wine. I don't know why people drink the wine anyway, because you're drinking it after 50 other people.

But regardless, you are not shaking hands during peace time, you know, when you do your moment of peace. Nor are you shaking hands when you introduce yourself to the person who's sitting next to you in the pew.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And pouring out the holy water.

PRESTON: So Trump is going to go do this Catholic thing. Meanwhile, the Catholic Church across the country is telling people, be careful. Don't come to church if you don't feel good.

LEMON: Scott, I don't understand. Listen, March 19 is a little bit away, but I just don't understand it when the messaging from the president -- I'm not talking about the entire administration -- but from the president has been so off that he would hold a campaign event when we're in the middle of a pandemic.

SCOTT JENNINGS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: I think on the one hand, he's trying not to incite, you know, public panic by saying, I can't even get my supporters together.

On the other hand, this is eight days away. Think about what this looked like eight days ago, now what it looks like tonight. I mean, who knows? And we could just cross the thousand-case threshold. How many more cases will we have identified in the next eight days?

Whether he holds a campaign rally or not, I mean, he has a lot of dedicated supporters. And I have no doubt some people will come. But there may come a point where a lot of say, I'd like to go, but I'm just not going to go until this gets under control.

So eight days is an eternity, you know, for -- on an issue like this, and I wonder what will happen between --

LEMON: But we're also facing -- not only are we facing a pandemic, but we're facing a crisis of confidence. And if you -- I mean, wouldn't it be a better message to say, Listen, we're facing a pandemic right now. And I think the more prudent thing would be to follow the guidelines of health officials. And we're not going to have this, because I want to make sure that all Americans are safe and that we don't spread --


LEMON: -- this virus that we know so little about at this point. So let's stay home, and then once we figure this out, then we'll have a rally, and we'll kick it off.

PSAKI: There's also the factor, I think you touched on, Don, which is kind of what the tone is. I mean, when you're president of the United States, and you're sitting in the White House, you're thinking, like, is this is a moment to hold a rally? Like, is this a moment where I should have --

LEMON: Is this a moment to wear a "Make America Great Again" hat?

PSAKI: -- my supporters. Exactly, right? Be on the public health piece, which is the most important piece.

It's also what is your role as president? And your role is not always to have cheering supporters. He isn't -- there isn't even a Democratic nominee yet. We don't know that there will be one in a week. He's got tons of money. I mean, he doesn't even need any more at this moment. He's got his loyal supporters. Does he -- he doesn't even need this rally. So that's the other piece of this.

BAKARI SELLERS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: None of us should feign surprise that the president is moving forward with rallies.

PSAKI: No, of course not. Of course not.

SELLERS: But this is consistent with what he said. This is the same man who stood at the podium and said, We have 15 cases today and tomorrow we'll have less, and we'll be down to zero.

Everything he has said from the podium, from -- from the perch of president has been completely antithetical to what the science has said, to what has been exhibited all around this country.

I don't look to this gentleman for -- and I'm being generous with "gentleman" -- but I don't look to the president for leadership in this moment. In fact, I think today's press conference, frankly, that was given by the White House that the vice president led was a marked improvement above even yesterday's, and yesterday's better than the one before, partly because they somehow got the president not to show up. And in so doing, I think people were able to tune in. They were able to listen to the facts. They were giving good guidance. It's not perfect, but maybe every single day they can get a little bit better.

But following the example of this president --

JENNINGS: If you called a moratorium on campaigning today -- and I'm not saying that's -- that may well be the right answer. When do you lift the moratorium?


LEMON: But no one is holding a moratorium on campaigning. Just holding a moratorium on getting people together.

JENNINGS: Well, that's how he campaigns. And that's how a lot of the Democrats campaigned, too. So if you -- if you sort of throw out a blanket, We're not having campaign gatherings anymore indefinitely, when do you lift? That's what I'm worried about all these things. We're going to close schools. We're going to not have sporting events. When do you lift it? It could be a while. I just said the consequences --

PSAKI: It might be.

LEMON: I've got to run. I've got to get to the break, but I just have to say -- and I said this on my show last night -- when Italy first got the first call, just to give you an idea of how quickly this spread, it was 650 people who had -- who came down with the coronavirus 11 days ago. Now it was, at least of last night, 1,900 people in 11 days.

JENNINGS: Correct. LEMON: We were at about 600 or 700 last night. Who know where we're going to be in 11 days? That's the whole reason people are questioning --

SELLERS: Agreed.

LEMON: -- the wisdom of having a campaign event.

We've still got a lot to talk about. Still ahead, more votes coming in from Washington state, Ohio, and North Dakota, as our special coverage of Super Tuesday 2 continues.



CUOMO: OK. Let me get in a key race alert here. Just look over my shoulder. Look what's going on in Washington now. Bernie Sanders up 2,000 votes.

Now, what dampens that as a potential victory? It's proportionate. So even if you win, it's about how many delegates each get. The split stays about the same, and that's what makes it so hard to catch up in a primary.

Idaho, you see 47, one there. Again, 77 percent. Getting closer to a threshold account there where you may get a protection at some point soon. Biden up 4,500 votes.

And of course, North Dakota very tight: 393 votes separating the two men. By percentage, it's a big deal, because you only have 37 percent of the precincts reporting.

All right. That's a quick taste of what's going on right now. We're going to take a quick break, and we're going to have more on the coronavirus outbreak on the other side. We have new cases, but more importantly, we've got perspective for you, next.

All right. The coronavirus in this country is a pandemic, and we have --