PoliticsNation, Tuesday, September 30th, 2014
Read the transcript from the Tuesday show
September 30, 2014
Guest: Jack Rice, Stephen Lynch, Stephen Morse, Paul Henderson, Carmen St.
REV. AL SHARPTON, MSNBC ANCHOR: Good evening, Ed. And thanks to you for
joining in and joining with us tonight.
We are going to continue the breaking news about the first confirmed case
of Ebola case in the United States. Let`s go right back now to Atlanta, to
the center for disease control, where the director is taking questions on
the first Ebola case diagnosed in the United States. Let`s listen in.
TOM FRIEDEN, DIRECTOR, CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL: Unlike this, that
individual was not cared for with infection control and resulted in a
number of secondary cases. But even in Lagos, and even with 19 secondary
cases, they appear to have been able to stop the outbreak.
I have no doubt that we`ll stop this in its tracks in the U.S., But I also
have no doubt that as long as the outbreak continues in Africa, we need to
be on our guard.
Other questions in the room?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: Can you give us a number or to the scale of
how big this team from the CDC is going to be and who that directly
entails? Doctors that are going to be in the hospital? Or are these going
to be people who are actually like expanding out into the community? Can
you give us a little more information on that.
FRIEDEN: I can get back to you with the exact size of the team. We
provide epidemiologists or disease detectives. We provide communications
experts. We provide a hospital infection control and laboratory experts as
need in the situation. And every CDC staff who`s there, or the 130 who are
in Africa are tied tightly to our experts here who provide backup 24/7.
We defer to the local and state health departments and they`re there on the
ground, they`re the lead and we`re there to support.
In the room? On the phone?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: (INAUDIBLE)
FRIEDEN: We defer to the local and state health departments, they`re there
on the ground, they`re the lead and we`re there to support.
In the room? On the phone?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The next question comes from Lauren Nearguard of AP.
Your line is open.
LAUREN NEARGUARD, REPORTER, ASSOCIATED PRESS (via phone): Thank you. Do
we know, can you even say if this is an American or is this a visitor? And
then has the health department already reached any of those contacts as
that contacts tracing began?
FRIEDEN: What I can say is the individual was here to visit family who
live in this country. The further details, I think, are to be identified
in the coming days or relevant or not, we`ll see. In terms of contact
tracing, we`re just beginning the process, and investigation just began
today but the health department had already been forward leaning on that so
we`re locating information for individuals so that that can begin
On the phone?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The next question comes from Maggie Fox of NBC news.
Your line is open.
MAGGIE FOX, REPORTER, NBC NEWS (via phone): I know that you have been
extremely clear that people don`t spread this virus unless they`re showing
symptoms, nonetheless, I think everybody knows that the reaction in the
United States has been disbelieving of this. So I`m wondering what steps
you might take to reassure people who fear they may have traveled on the
same plane with this patient or passed through the same airport with this
patient that they are not at risk?
FRIEDEN: Well, people can always call us at CDC info. They can also check
on our Web site. The flight in question is a specific flight departing
Liberia on the 19th and arriving in the U.S. on the 20th. So that would be
a very small number of people that would have that level of concern.
But really, I think it`s important that we understand a lot about Ebola.
Ebola is a virus. It`s a virus that is easy to kill by washing your hands.
It`s easy to stop by using gloves and various precautions. The issue is
not that Ebola is highly infection. The issue with Ebola is that the
stakes are so high. And that`s why at the hospital in Texas, they`re
taking all the precautions they need to take to protect people who are
caring for this individual.
Now, people who are infection with Ebola when they`re sick. In fact, think
of it this way, when we begin doing testing on people as they become sick,
even in the initial phases of the illness, when they`ve got a fever, the
most sensitive tests in the world sometimes don`t detect it because there`s
so little of the virus that they have. It is only as they become sicker
that they have become more infectious. And if patients die from Ebola,
they can have very large quantities of virus there.
So there is no risk from having contact with somebody who`s either
recovered from Ebola and I went to the region myself and embraced people
who would recovered from Ebola or people who have been exposed but are not
yet sick from it.
Next question on the phone.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The next question is from (INAUDIBLE) of ":Newsweek."
Your line is open.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER (via phone): Hi, thank you. (INAUDIBLE) so I
know you can`t give many details about the patient. But this is a male and
I don`t know if there`s any age range you can give. And then also just
wondering is this the first ever case in the United States and if not was
there one previous case diagnosed if ever?
FRIEDEN: This is the first patient diagnosed outside of Africa to our
knowledge with this particular strain of Ebola. And as I mentioned
earlier, we have had other patients with hemorrhagic fever including a
patient in 2007 with Marberg (ph) which is a virus that is quite a bit like
Ebola. That individual in 2007 actually was hospitalized, went through a
surgery before being diagnosed and did not result in the spread to any
So this is the first case of Ebola diagnosed in the U.S. And as far as we
understand, of this strange of Ebola diagnosed outside of Africa. I think
we have referred to the patient in any way that we can to far.
Next question on the phone?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Next question is from Kelly Giblin of "Bloomberg
News." Your line is open.
KELLY GIBLIN, REPORTER, BLOOMBERG NEWS (via phone): Hi, thank you. I`m
just wondering if you can tell us a little bit more about the contact
tracing process and how that`s done and how you can assure that you have, I
guess, reached all the people that that person was in contact with when
they were sick?
FRIEDEN: So contact tracing ask a core public health function and we do it
by a very systematic manner. We interview the patient if that`s possible.
We interview every family member. We identify all possible names. We
outline all of the movements that could have occurred from the time of
possible onset of symptoms until isolation. Then in a cascading manner, we
identify every other individual who can add to that information. And with
that, we have put together a map, essentially, that identifies the time,
the place, the level of the contact and then we use a concentric circle
approach to identify those contact who is might have had the highest risk
of exposure, those who have an intermediate risk and those who may possibly
have had an exposure even though we think that maybe unlikely.
And we always err on the side of identifying and tracking more contacts
rather than less. I mentioned earlier today that in Lagos with 20 cases,
we at CDC and elsewhere, working with the Nigerian authorities, identified
nearly 900 contacts and monitored all of them every day for 21 days. In
Senegal, we also identified a single patient who came in, had exposures at
two different health care facilities and in the community. We monitored
more than 60 contacts every day, none of them became ill.
So this kind of context tracing really is the core of public health. And
it`s what we`re doing day in and day out and it`s what we will do here to
identify any possible spread and to ensure that aren`t further change of
On the phone, two more questions.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Next question is from (INAUDIBLE). Your line is
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER (via phone): OK. I have two questions.
First, I just want to confirm the timeline. So my understanding is the
patient arrived in the United States on the 20th, initially sought
treatment on the 26th, I`m assuming was then sent home and came back again
on the 28th of September and was admitted. The second question is, will
you be offering this patient any congress convalesce (INAUDIBLE)? Thanks.
FRIEDEN: You are correct about the timeline. In terms of experimental
therapies, that`s something that is being discussed with the hospital now
and with the family and if appropriate would be provided to the extent
The last question on the phone?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Next question is from Denice Greedy (ph) of the "New
York Times." Your line is open.
DENICE GREEDY (ph), REPORTER, THE NEW YORK TIMES (via phone): Thanks very
much. I think that people have touched on this, but I would just like to
ask this anyway, just in case we can get any more clarity on it. Was this,
can you tell us if this person is an American citizen? Will you be
releasing the flight information and is it correct to assume that he was
staying at a home with family members rather than in a hotel?
FRIEDEN: The patient was visiting family members and staying with family
members who live in this country. We will contact anyone who we think has
any likelihood of having had an exposure to the individual while they were
At that point--at this point, that does not include anyone who might have
traveled with him because he was not infectious at that-time. And you
asked a third question which I don`t remember.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: I asked if he`s an American citizen.
FRIEDEN: He`s visiting family who live in this country.
Do we have any other questions in the room?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE REPORTER: A follow-up on that. Will you identify the
FRIEDEN: We will identify any context where we think there is a risk of
transmission. At this point, there is zero risk of transmission on the
flight. The illness of Ebola would not have gone on for 10 days before
diagnosis. He was checked for fever before getting on the flight and
there`s no reason to think that anyone on the flight that he was on would
be at risk.
I want to end with just a bottom line before we stop. Ebola is a scary
disease because of the severity of the illness causes. And we`re really
hoping for the recovery of this individual. At the same time, we`re
stopping it in its tracks in this country, we can do that because of two
things, strong health care infection control that stops the spread of Ebola
and strong core public health functions that trace contact, track contact,
isolate them, if they have any symptoms and stop the chain of transmission.
we`re stopping this in its tracks.
Thank you very much.
SHARPTON: That was Thomas Frieden, director of the Center of Disease
Control, confirming the first case of Ebola diagnosed here in the United
States. He said the patient is in strict isolation at the Texas health
Presbyterian hospital in Dallas, and that the patient is an adult who
recently traveled back to the U.S. from Liberia and developed symptoms days
after returning here. But there is a four-day period when this patient had
symptoms but was not in isolation, and the contact the patient may have had
with others during that time is of real concern. The CDC director says it
is likely a handful of people who were exposed to the patient. Likely,
mostly family members.
I want to bring in Dr. Peter Hotez, Ebola expert at the Texas children`s
hospital. Dr. Frieden said, Doctor, that this is a scary disease. What`s
your reaction to this press conference he just had?
DOCTOR PETER HOTEZ, EBOLA EXPERT: I actually think Dr. Frieden did a very
nice summary. He mentioned it is a scary disease. It is associated with
my mortality, but it`s not a disease that`s easily transmitted. Remember,
this is not a virus that is transmitted as easily as measles or whooping
cough. This is a disease that requires direct contact with patient fluids.
For that reason, it`s been difficult to transmit.
The reason it`s such a terrible problem in Liberia and Sierra Leone and
Guinea, is because of the total collapse of the health care infrastructure.
They`ve gone through such horrific civil wars over the years and they`re
paying the price for those horrific destruction of their health care
system. We`re looking at a very different situation here in the United
SHARPTON: So let me make sure that we understand you correctly. It is
difficult to transmit, but it is a very serious disease, a deadly disease?
HOTEZ: I think you summarized it very nicely. The risk that this could
lead to an Ebola outbreak in Dallas, or in Texas, is practically zero.
Remember, we have the mechanism to isolate patients. We have good
protective clothing and gear for our health care providers. This is a
virus that will not gain a foothold here in Dallas in Texas.
There are a lot of tropical diseases among the poor in the United States
and in Texas and the gulf coast I`d love to talk to you about, but Ebola is
not one of them.
SHARPTON: Now Doctor, let me trace what the concerns are. This
individual, traveling from Liberia to America, has been diagnosed with
Ebola. The patient left Liberia on the 19th of September, arrived in the
U.S. on the 20th of September. The patient had no symptoms when departing
Liberia, or when he entered this country. Four or five days later, around
the 24th of September, he developed symptoms. On the 26th of September,
the patient sought care and on the 28th of September, which was just
Sunday, he was admitted into Texas Presbyterian and placed in isolation.
Today, they received the specimens from testing and they were tested
positive for Ebola. There are no other suspected cases of Ebola at this
time. What does this time line and this four-day period, what questions do
you have about this? And what concerns do you have about -- knowing this
time line could be possible?
HOTEZ: So by interpretation --thank you for that excellent summary, by the
way. My I interpretation of the time line is based on what I know about
the virus and how the virus has transmitted. It is a virus that can be
transmitted from person to person, only when you`re actively sick and have
a high fever. So that whole entire period when she was traveling to the
United States, when he had no symptoms, as Doctor Friedman points out,
there is zero risk that this is the virus that is going to be transmitted
on the air flight, for instance.
Then you have -- when he becomes sick in the Dallas area, again, this is
not a virus that is easily transmitted. It is not transmitted via
respiratory contact. This is not a virus that is going to be transmitted
by any casual interaction. It requires direct contact with blood or other
secretions from the patient.
That`s why even in Liberia where it`s worse affective what we are seeing
this, it is healthcare providers who are handling secretions or it`s close
family members handling secretions, or those who unfortunately have to bury
the dead and come into the secretions.
So this is not something that`s going to be easily transmitted and that`s
why I have a lot of optimism with the CDC and state health department
identifying any potential case contacts that this will be controlled and
will not lead to an epidemic in the Dallas area.
SHARPTON: Dr. Hotez, stand by for one moment. I want to bring in Dr. Amy
Ray in Texas disease specialist, with University hospital case medical
DOCTOR AMY RAY, UNIVERSITY HOSPITAL CASE MEDICAL CENTER (via phone): Thank
you for having me.
SHARPTON: Thank you. Four days without being tested, Doctor. Tell me how
you respond to that? What concerns and questions are raised when you hear
RAY: Well, I think first and foremost, the epidemical history of the
patient has to be obtained by the medical care providers. Many hospitals
in the United States have already taken care of ill travelers returning
home from western Africa, west Africa, with fever, my hospital included.
So the very first step is understanding where the patient has been, when
they had traveled, when they returned and when they became symptomatic.
I`m not aware of the details of this particular case in Texas, but it`s
certainly not a surprise to me that a case has been diagnosed in the United
SHARPTON: Dr. Hotez, let me ask you this, they knew when he arrived in the
United States that he had come from Liberia. Don`t you think that they
should have been more aggressive and harder when he first started showing
symptoms? Why wait the four day when is they knew of the Ebola outbreak in
the area of the world that he had just come in from?
HOTEZ: Well, again, this is a disease that`s not going to be transmitted
unless you`re sick at the time. So presumably when he came into the United
States, he was not having a fever, showing no signs and symptoms of the
infection, and he was at zero risk. What we don`t know is what happened
after he developed fever, knew he was sick, and we don`t have a lot of
details of what happened in the next day or two before he sought medical
attention, and we`ll learn more about that in the coming days and weeks as
well, as we follow this patient.
SHARPTON: And that`s what concerns me, doctor, is that if it took several
days, three or four days before they could diagnose him, how do we know, or
how do we tell the public that they would know that there may be some
concern that they ought to check out? To Dr. Ray --
HOTEZ: Well, again -- sorry.
RAY: No, that`s OK. Well, again, the details remain to be seen. So
depending on how far he was into his illness upon presentation to the
hospital and what their index of suspicion was for Ebola, there are many
different infections that can be acquired as a result of travel. So we
have to get the time line and the contacts and the basics of public health
nailed down before widespread panic should ensue for sure.
SHARPTON: All right, Dr. Hotez and Dr. Ray, thank you both for your time
RAY: Thank you, Reverend.
HOTEZ: Thanks, all the best.
SHARPTON: We`re going to have much more on this breaking news story, the
first confirmed case of Ebola in the U.S., including a press conference
from that hospital in Dallas, where the patient is. And also breaking news
on the intruder who carried a knife into the White House. Both stories are
breaking. We`ll have them both ahead.
SHARPTON: Now to the breaking news on our other top story, the White House
Late today as lawmakers grilled the secret service director, yet another
bombshell report about what happened inside the executive mansion. "The
Washington Post" reporting the intruder was tackled by an off-duty secret
service agent who coincidentally in the house and leaving for the night.
Quote, "he happened to be walking through the house when chaos broke out
and the intruder dashed through the main foyer." It`s amazing. Every day
chilling new details are emerging.
Here`s the state floor of the White House. Remember, the secret service
initially said the intruder had been apprehended at the main entrance. But
then we learned the intruder made it through the east room, all the way to
the doorway of the green room. And today we`re learning he was stopped
there by sheer dumb luck, an off-duty officer. Of course lawmakers
questioning the secret service director today didn`t yet know about these
details. But they knew enough to ask some very tough questions.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. ELEANOR HOLMES NORTON (D-DC), HOUSE OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE: We must
learn whether today`s secret service, as structured, for example, could
stop five or six fence jumpers.
REP. DARRELL ISSA (R), CHAIRMAN, HOUSE OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE: After allowing
a paparazzi crazed reality TV star to crash a state dinner --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Someone should be held accountable.
REP. JASON CHAFFETZ (R), OVERSIGHT AND GOVERNMENT REFORM COMMITTEE: Don`t
let somebody get close to the president. Don`t let somebody get close to
his family. Don`t let them get in the White House ever.
REP. STEPHEN LYNCH (D-MA), HOUSE OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE: This is beyond the
pale. And I`ve listened to your testimony very deliberately here this
morning. And I wish to God you protected the White House like you`re
protecting your reputation here today.
JULIA PIERSON, SECRET SERVICE DIRECTOR: Yes, sir, if I may. Any time any
organization, you start to make significant changes, some people will have
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: The secret service was under a microscope today. The focus
could be about to get even more intense.
Joining me now, Congressman Stephen Lynch who serves on the house oversight
committee, and was in that hearing today and Jack Rice, former CIA agent
who spent time as a special agent in the office of security. Thank you
both for joining me.
LYNCH: Thank you, Reverend.
SHARPTON: Congressman, before we talk about the hearing, what`s your
reaction to this new report about an off-duty officer was the one that
stopped this intruder?
LYNCH: It`s basically accurate, Reverend. The officer who actually
ultimately stopped the intruder, there were two officers involved, but I
think the one that made the difference was actually just finishing up
paperwork downstairs and heard the commotion upstairs. So you`re right to
ask, what would have happened if this officer, you know, we got lucky.
This officer was coming off duty at the time the intruder came through, and
that was how he was stopped. It raises a lot of questions.
SHARPTON: But Jack, I mean, let`s look at more detail from "the Washington
Post" story. It says, quote, "there`s no telling how long this guy could
have run around if the detail guy hadn`t happened to be there, one person
said, on the condition of anonymity."
I mean, this is chilling. The Congressman said, we got lucky. We`re
protecting the president of the United States and his family with luck?
JACK RICE, FORMER CIA SPECIAL AGENT: Yes, chilling. Outrageous. If we
think about the failure, it`s one after the other, after the other. First
he never made it to the door, then he made it in the door, then he made it
across the room, and now we find that there was a guy who just happened to
be there by mistake. Are -- is that would our defenses now? We`re
actually depending upon off-duty officers who maybe finishing a paperwork.
At what point are we going to be outraged by this? I think we`ve crossed
that line, Rev.
SHARPTON: You know, Congressman, there is another story late today. A
security contractor, this is in "the Washington Post," a security
contractor with a gun and three prior convictions for assault and battery
was allowed on an elevator with President Obama during a September 16th
trip to Atlanta, violating secret service protocols, according to three
people familiar with the incident. What`s your reaction to this,
LYNCH: Well, if it`s true, it`s another lapse. And we need -- one of the
things that come out of our classified briefing today was that both
Republicans and Democrats agreed that instead of having the secret service
do an internal investigation and investigate themselves, we think it would
be worthwhile to have an independent investigator look at their whole
protocol for security at the White House from top to bottom. Because
obviously major changes need to be made.
SHARPTON: Major changes, Congressman. What are you thinking about?
LYNCH: Well, we used to have a very strong tradition of security and
professionalism at the White House. But as you know, Reverend, we had an
incident in Colombia, with agents soliciting prostitutes. We had agents
under the influence of alcohol, unable to perform in the president`s
entourage. We have this instance where on three separate occasions, the
secret service interacted with this individual intruder. And the first
time, he had 11 weapons in the car. He had long distance scopes. He had
sniper rifles. The second time they caught him, he was outside the White
House with a hatchet stuck in his belt, and yet -- and also at the time,
they knew that he had mental illness, and yet no one obtained a restraining
order. No one thought to raise a red flag that this individual should not
be around the White House. Finally he came a third time, and as you say,
he jumped the fence and got all the way to the green room. He basically
did half of a White House tour that the public usually does, before he was
just coincidentally tackled by an agent coming off duty.
SHARPTON: With a knife in his pocket.
And, Jack, I mean, looking at the fact, analysts told "the Washington Post"
that five layers of security failed to stop this intruder. Counter
surveillance officers should have seen him jump the fence. There should
have been an alarm alerting uniformed officers. A dog could have been
released to stop him. There was supposed to be a guard positioned at the
front door, an emergency SWAT team roving the property. I mean, this is
something you and I talked about last week. How could all these layers
fail at the same time?
RICE: Yes, Rev. And again, that`s the real problem that we have here.
This is a credibility question that the secret service has now. This
really invites additional threats. The failure started before he jumped
As the congressman just described, there are multiple instances where they
had contact. They should have been watching this guy on the front end,
before he jumped the fence. And then these rings of security that should
have stepped into place one after the other, each one is failing. But
there`s one last issue Rev if I might. I`m a former prosecutor, I`m a
criminal defense attorney, I`ve seen this on the gun side. The idea that
this contractor is standing next to the President with a weapon and he has
domestic assault convictions. He shouldn`t have had the weapon in the
first place. And we have a procedure in place that the secret service
should not have allowed it. It`s another example of failure. It`s not
about necessarily changing all of the policies. It`s about applying the
ones that actually exist, and I want to see that too.
SHARPTON: You know, Congressman, you had some tough words for the secret
service director today. I want to play some. Listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. STEPHEN LYNCH (D), MASSACHUSETTS: I don`t think the secret service is
taking their duty to protect the American president and his family at the
White House, I don`t think you`re taking it seriously. Based on the
evidence and the series of lapses, unfortunately that`s the conclusion that
I arrive at, that you`re not taking your job seriously. I`m sorry. I hate
to be critical, but we got a lot at stake here. I have very low confidence
in the secret service under your leadership.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Congressman, can the American people feel that the President and
his family is safe in the White House tonight?
LYNCH: I think because of this incident, they have redoubled their
efforts. They have taken very stop-gap measures. They have not done a
top-to-bottom review like we need to. But I think for the time being,
because of that incident, yes, I think that they`ve reinforced the original
security and I also think they`re paying very keen attention to what`s
going on at the White House. But that`s what it took to get us there, we
had an intruder get deep into the White House and that`s the only reason
that the security has been enhanced.
SHARPTON: And several other lapses. I mean, with all of these lapses,
Congressman, don`t you think that somebody needs to be removed at some
position of authority? Because as Jack said, we`re not talking about new
rules here. We`re talking about implementing and executing the rules that
are already there. That seem that magically been overlooked from Atlanta
to the White House.
LYNCH: Yes. I think Jack`s right. If this last incident turns out to be
what is reported, I think that the President and Jay Johnson, his you know,
homeland security director, he oversees -- he`s actually supervises the
secret service as well. I think they`ll have to have a long conversation
about whether or not director Pierson is the person to make the necessary
changes at the secret service.
SHARPTON: Congressman Steven Lynch and Jack Rice, thank you both for your
RICE: Thank you, Reverend.
SHARPTON: Still ahead, more on the breaking news out of Dallas, the first
confirmed case of Ebola inside the United States. We`re expecting a news
conference from that hospital in the next few minutes.
Also, he shot a young man because of loud music. And today he testified in
his own defense at his murder trial. We`ll have that story.
And Mitt Romney is making headlines by talking about 2016. Stay with us.
SHARPTON: Doctors at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas are
holding a press conference right now about the Ebola patient in isolation
there. Let`s listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DR. EDWARD GOODMAN, TEXAS HEALTH PRESBYTERIAN HOSPITAL, DALLAS: --
supporting those caregivers as they do every day. The patient has been in
appropriate isolation, which, according to CDC is called contact isolation
and droplet precautions. Since they arrived for this admission on Sunday,
our staff is thoroughly trained in infection control procedures and
protocols. And we have been meeting literally for weeks in anticipation of
such an event. The purpose of hospital system to care for the sick and the
injured and the ill, and to advance knowledge about health and well-being.
At Texas Health, our training, our emergency preparedness, our dedication
and focus on safety and quality, essentially everything we do is in
preparation to handle these types of cases. It`s important to note that
bound by federal law, we cannot name any patients without the written
permission and consent and that the HIPAA privacy rule forbids health care
institutions from releasing any identifiable health information about any
We`re caring for this patient, because this person came to us for help, and
they came to us sick. And it`s the right thing to do. Our mission is to
improve the health of the people in the communities we serve. Our focus on
compassion is at the heart of everything that we do. As health care
professionals, this is what we train, and what we prepare for. We`ll now
take your questions and will be ever mindful of patient privacy. We`ll do
our best to be mindful of patient privacy, to give you the answers.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Doctor, why did it take 48 hours after this patient
initially sought care to be put in isolation?
GOODMAN: Well, the patient`s initial visit was two days before, when they
presented with very non-descript, non-specific symptoms, and it was not
clear the patient had come from an area where Ebola virus present.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: When did you first learn he had come from West Africa?
GOODMAN: On the second visit on Sunday the 28th, that`s when the
information became more clear. That even then, it wasn`t completely clear,
but it`s still evolving. We`re getting new information as each day goes
GOODMAN: Well, I can`t speak to the people outside of the hospital. But
what we`re determining and we`re looking at all of the people who might
have had contact. There doesn`t appear to have been -- because only
exposure requires exposure to blood or body fluids. At the time of that
visit he wasn`t that ill, he wasn`t having body fluids, he wasn`t having
vomiting or diarrhea.
GOODMAN: Well, I would say there`s no concern. We`re going to track all
the people who had contact with him and we`re going to watch them and
monitor their health.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Does that include hospital workers?
GOODMAN: Of course.
UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: Did he come by ambulance or did he walked on his own?
GOODMAN: I`m not certain on that, but I believe he came on his own on the
first visit. The second visit, he was brought by emergency medical
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Can you pinpoint exactly when the patient came in the
first time, and can you also explain, if you can describe without violating
any laws, his condition and what he looks like right now?
GOODMAN: I don`t think I can answer the second question. I think that
might be a violation of federal laws. Best I can recall, the patient came
to the hospital either late Thursday night or early Friday morning.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Had he gone to other hospitals before and was directed
here, how did he end up here?
GOODMAN: We`re not certain, but there`s no evidence that he went anywhere
GOODMAN: First of all, let me say that it is not an airborne disease, so
there`s no requirement for separating the air. However, he`s in the
intensive care unit not initially because he was that critically ill, but
because it had the negative air pressure in the event that we needed that
kind of isolation. And secondly, it has glass walls that we can look in.
And one of the tenets of personal protection is that the people caring for
the patient have somebody watching them to ensure that they`re doing all
the things proper for their own protection. It has to be a segregated area
away from any other patients by convenience. And we`ve put restrictions.
It`s an ideal location, in fact.
UNIDENTIFIED MAN: How are the doctors and nurses who are treating this
patient prepped? Is it similar to the footage in Africa, where they`re
head to toe in clothing?
SHARPTON: We`ve been listening to a press conference from doctors at the
Dallas hospital where the patient with the first confirmed case of Ebola
virus in this country is now in isolation.
Joining me now on the phone, is Dr. Stephen Morse, expert on infectious
diseases at Columbia University. Dr. Morse, what is your reaction?
STEPHEN MORSE, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY: Well, I think that it was inevitable
that sooner or later, and I think we`ll have more patients like this. It`s
inevitable that people will be coming from these areas and some of them may
have caught Ebola while working there. And we will be seeing cases like
this. And I think the hospital was very wise to recognize that there was
something unusual about this patient, take the infectious disease
precautions to isolate the patient and basically handle the symptoms until
Ebola was confirmed as the cause.
SHARPTON: Your expertise is in infectious diseases. How risky is this to
others that may have interacted at any point with this man in the four days
that we have been told that he was at large in Texas, and had no idea that
he had Ebola?
MORSE: Sure. It depends on the nature of the contact. It requires close,
physical contact, or contact with blood, or other secretions and probably
many of the people he casually encountered never really got that close or
had the opportunity to get infected. If they were family members who were
taking care of him as soon as he began to get sick, they might be at
greater risk. And I`m sure that right now, the CDC and the Texas State
Department of public health are doing just that, looking for possible
contacts to keep an eye on them and see if they`re going to be all right.
Usually, you watch them for about 21 days to see if they -- make sure they
don`t get a fever or other symptoms.
SHARPTON: Dr. Morse, we thank you for your time tonight.
MORSE: My pleasure. Thank you.
SHARPTON: We`ll be right back.
SHARPTON: We`re back with tonight`s Justice Files. Joining me now are
prosecutor and legal analyst Paul Henderson, and trial Attorney Carmen St.
George. Thank you both for being here this evening.
CARMEN ST. GEORGE, TRIAL ATTORNEY: Thank you, Rev.
PAUL HENDERSON, LEGAL ANALYST: Thanks for having us.
SHARPTON: Our top story, Michael Dunn, testifying in his own defense in
the so-called loud music murder retrial. Dunn is charged with the murder
of unarmed 17-year-old Jordan Davis. On the stand today, Dunn once again
claimed he shot to protect himself.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MICHAEL DUNN, CHARGED WITH MURDER: I see the young man lean down. I see
his shoulders and he comes back up with something in his hands, and he
bangs it against his door, and says, I`m going to (bleep) kill you. I made
the determination that my life was in imminent danger and I was going to
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Dunn also testified he meant to pull the trigger 50 times, if it
meant protecting his life. However prosecutors pointed out that no weapon
was ever found inside the car. Dunn was also grilled by the prosecutor
about why he never called the police.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN GUY, PROSECUTOR: So you got in your car?
GUY: With your cell phone?
GUY: You know how to call 911?
GUY: You did not?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Both sides are expected to finish up their closing arguments
tonight. The jury is set to get their instructions tomorrow. Carmen, did
it the state prove its case this time?
GEORGE: I think they did. This is a very difficult case for the defense.
I mean, it`s up to the defendant to show that he was in reasonable fear of
imminent danger. And unless he can prove that the door was opened to that
vehicle, and there was a gun, in fact, it`s going to be a very difficult
case for the defense.
SHARPTON: You know, that was what the prosecutors really hammered on,
Paul. They said that -- they hammered about the fact that there was never
a gun or weapon found in the car with Jordan Davis. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ERIN WOLFSON, PROSECUTOR: Let me be very clear. There was no shotgun in
that red Durango that night. There was no stick, there was no branch,
there was no hallow pipe. There was no weapon.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Now, how important is that to the case? Does it even matter if
Mr. Dunn says, he believed his life was in danger, Paul?
HENDERSON: Absolutely not. Based on my opinion of this case. Because
the threat has to be real or perceived. We know it wasn`t real because
there`s no gun. I don`t even believe it was perceived because even the ex-
fiancee said she didn`t see a gun, she never heard anything about a gun, he
never mentioned anything about a gun to her. And he had so many things
that he could have done in reaction to, even if that threat was real in any
way. He could have rolled up the window. He could have locked the door.
He could have called the police. He could have driven away. He did none
of those things, reached for the one, pointed it, and shot it ten times,
and killed that young man. You know, this is a terrible case. I`m hoping
that he is found accountable for all his actions here, but I think the
prosecution did a fairly decent job. The only thing that I would have
liked to see is a little more righteous indignation from the prosecution
about the behavior of Mr. Dunn while he was on the stand. Because I know
that`s what the jury wanted to see and they were watching Mr. Dunn and that
interaction very closely as they make up their mind.
SHARPTON: And he never -- and I`m repeating what Paul pointed out. He
never told his girlfriend who was with him, and they went to a hotel and
had pizza, I believe, never mentioned to her about a gun.
GEORGE: It`s a problem. They drove away from a scene where he had just
fired at least ten times at a vehicle, at a human being, never once
mentioning having rum and coax, drinks, partying, after he had been to his
son`s wedding. Then not saying anything until the next day. It`s
incredible. And I think the expert that he presented himself is
problematic, because although the experts say, the door had to be open for
the shots to have been fired, the experts also said that he was quite a
distance away from that vehicle.
GEORGE: Which is hard for you to prove that you were in imminent fear of
SHARPTON: All right. I`m going to have to leave it there. Paul Henderson
and Carmen St. George, thank you both for your time.
GEORGE: Thank you.
HENDERSON: Thanks for having us.
SHARPTON: Coming up, the history of the secret service protecting the
president and restoring trust today. And the late-night comedians welcome
Chelsea Clinton`s beautiful baby girl into the world. That`s next.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEPHEN COLBERT, STAND-UP COMEDIAN: Charlotte, kind of suspicious she was
named after the largest city in a major swing state. If it had been a boy,
would we be celebrating the birth of little baby Akron?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: We here at POLITICS NATION want to offer a big congratulations
to Chelsea Clinton and her husband Mark on the birth of their beautiful
daughter Charlotte. The new grandparents, Bill and Hillary were overjoyed
with the birth of their first grandchild. Another group of people rushing
to offer their congratulations were late-night comedians.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID LETTERMAN, STAND-UP COMEDIAN: The baby girl will not confirm or nor
deny whether she`s running in 2056.
CONAN O`BRIEN, STAND-UP COMEDIAN: Reportedly Bill is already helping out,
changing diapers, he`s singing the baby lullabies and personally
interviewing thousands of nannies.
JIMMY FALLON, "THE TONIGHT SHOW": She`s said her first word -- Iowa. So
cute, really, it`s adorable.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: Baby Charlotte, we have a gift for you, welcome, and you are
welcome here at POLITICS NATION anytime.
SHARPTON: Finally tonight, restoring trust in the secret service. For
more than a century, the secret service has protected American presidents
in the face of constantly changing threats. In 1950, agents helped save
President Truman when armed gunmen actually mounted an attack on his
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HARRY TRUMAN, 33RD PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The plot is filed.
Police and secret service men examine the damage. A picket on the iron
fence is knocked off. The steps and doorway bear bullet holes. Only the
guard`s quick action prevented more casualties.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SHARPTON: In 1981, a secret service agent took a bullet meant for
President Reagan during an assassination attempt caught on tape. But of
course, a generation earlier, they couldn`t save President Kennedy. The
secret service has a solemn duty and a sacred trust. President Lincoln
once said, though it would be safer for a president to live in a cage, it
would interfere with his business. The President of the United States
cannot live in a cage, but we must have confidence in the secret service.
This agency must get back on its feet. So the President can do his job
without worrying about his own safety or the safety of his family. Today`s
hearings did very little to answer so many questions, that so many
Americans, on all sides of the political spectrum have to ask. How can one
man go through and flip five or six waves of security? How can we have
another man get on an elevator with the President with a gun? How can all
these breaches happen? We want to know. We want our president protected.
Thanks for watching. I`m Al Sharpton. "HARDBALL" starts right now.
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