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5 things to know for September 23: Covid-19, Breonna Taylor, UN, domestic violence

Cindy McCain, wife of late Sen. John McCain, tells CNN's David Axelrod why she considers Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden a friend.

Posted: Sep 23, 2020 5:21 PM
Updated: Sep 23, 2020 5:21 PM

As the US passes a sobering milestone, Covid-19 survivors have a message for those who view the pandemic as politics: The virus is not a hoax.

Here's what you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On with Your Day.

(You can also get "5 Things You Need to Know Today" delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)

1. Coronavirus

This time last year, the headline we are facing today would have been unbelievable. Unfathomable. A sick joke. More than 200,000 people have died on American soil of a virus that, mere months ago, was completely unknown to us. Around the world, more than 970,000 lives have been lost. With no vaccine and no widely adopted solutions, the misery won't be ending soon.

We went back through our archives to see what it was like in those early days before the coronavirus pandemic became an international tragedy and changed nearly every aspect of our lives.

The first time CNN.com reported on the virus was January 8. 

It was part of a so-called "mysterious pneumonia outbreak" in Wuhan, China. At the time, scientists reported no human-to-human transmissions and no deaths. We know now that the virus may have already been in the US at that time, silently lurking and spreading.

The virus was compared to the SARS pandemic that killed 774 people in Asia in 2002 and 2003. To put that in perspective, since the first known US Covid-19 death on February 6, an average of more than 858 people have died in the United States from the disease every day -- an entire SARS pandemic every several hours.

The first time you read about coronavirus in 5 Things was January 21. 

"A new virus in China is threatening to become a pandemic," our subject line said. At the time, the official global death toll was six. By the time you finish reading this newsletter, at least six people in the world will have died of Covid-19 since you began.

That's not an exaggeration. There were 4,795 worldwide deaths yesterday. That's three deaths per minute.

To put it in another perspective, the total US coronavirus death toll is equivalent to one 9/11 attack every day for 66 days. The US coronavirus death toll is more than the number of Americans killed in battle in the five most recent wars combined: the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Iraq War, the War in Afghanistan and the Persian Gulf War.

No matter how you do the math, you're left with truly horrifying figures. But those figures represent so much more. They represent real lives, real people who leave behind devastated families and unfinished legacies. People who, were it not for this virus, would probably still be alive today. No comparison can properly convey such a loss.

2. Election 2020

How times have changed. Cindy McCain, the widow of longtime Republican Sen. John McCain, has endorsed Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. As you might recall, Biden ran on a ticket against her husband in 2008. But the announcement isn't a total surprise. Cindy McCain appeared in a video at the Democratic National Convention last month about Biden's relationship with her late husband, whom President Trump often attacked. The move comes as Biden is trying to peel off independents and Republicans alienated by Trump's rhetoric and actions -- including in battleground states such as Arizona. In other news, the first presidential debate will focus on the pandemic, the nation's racial reckoning and the Supreme Court. It's set for Tuesday.

3. Breonna Taylor

Six Louisville Metro Police Department officers are under internal investigation for their actions the night Breonna Taylor was shot and killed in her home. One of those officers, who fired into the 26-year-old EMT's home during a March 13 raid, sent a mass email to the department yesterday defending his actions and criticizing the city's leadership. Meanwhile, Louisville authorities have declared a state of emergency and restricted downtown access ahead of a grand jury's decision on whether criminal charges should be brought against the officers involved. An announcement is expected sometime soon.

4. United Nations

The United Nations General Assembly has largely been marked by strongman leaders, fraying relations and a sense of international crisis. UN Secretary General António Guterres called the pandemic "our own 1945 moment" -- a reference to World War II -- and warned that the diplomatic relationship between the US and China was moving "in a very dangerous direction." World leaders including President Trump, Turkey's Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Brazil's Jair Bolsonaro used their time to attack other nations. Also on leaders' minds were coronavirus vaccines, with several touting their own domestic vaccine candidates as a potential solution.

5. Domestic violence

The advice during the pandemic has been constant: Stay at home. But for victims of domestic violence, home is no safe haven. A new study from Rutgers University finds that the pandemic has led to a surge in domestic violence, leaving victims and their children struggling for access to food, transportation and a safe place to live. Faced with the choice of abuse or homelessness, some victims were forced to move back into unsafe situations. Others faced pandemic-related barriers, such as a lack of child care or employment opportunities, that pressured them to live near their abusers.

THIS JUST IN ...

Government funding deal reached

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin clinched a deal to take the threat of a government shutdown at the end of the month off the table. The bipartisan agreement would fund the government through December 11.

BREAKFAST BROWSE

Tropical Storm Paulette is back from the dead in what being called a 'zombie tropical storm'

What else can we expect from this cursed year?

Elon Musk promises a $25,000 Tesla in about 3 years

Be warned: The Tesla CEO has a history of sometimes under-delivering on promises.

We now know why an entire village lost its broadband at the same time every day for 18 months

Really gives a whole new meaning to the phrase "break the internet."

Mike Tyson will be voting for the first time ever

His felony conviction previously stripped him of his right to vote. A recent law in Nevada changes that.

Reese's is putting pretzels in its peanut butter cups

Because, as Hershey's candy brand said, "The hell with it. It's 2020."

TODAY'S NUMBER

64

That's how many students the University of California unfairly admitted between 2013 and 2019, the state auditor announced. The findings come more than a year after several wealthy parents were arrested in the college admissions scandal known as Operation Varsity Blues.

TODAY'S QUOTE

"If the nominee reaches the Senate floor, I intend to vote based upon their qualifications."

GOP Sen. Mitt Romney, signaling that he's on board with the Senate taking up a new Supreme Court nominee during the current election year. His announcement all but ensures that whoever Trump puts forward will be confirmed.

TODAY'S WEATHER

Check your local forecast here>>>

AND FINALLY

The special ingredient in Sriracha 

The secret to the hot sauce we all know and love is actually quite simple. (Click here to view.)

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 724214

Reported Deaths: 13363
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion989071736
Lake53172962
Allen40223675
Hamilton35354408
St. Joseph35270550
Elkhart28228437
Tippecanoe22297217
Vanderburgh22231396
Porter18560304
Johnson17832376
Hendricks17098313
Clark12897191
Madison12519339
Vigo12379244
Monroe11811168
LaPorte11691210
Delaware10571185
Howard9823215
Kosciusko9347117
Hancock8204139
Bartholomew8036155
Warrick7754155
Floyd7630176
Wayne7002198
Grant6986174
Boone6652101
Morgan6529139
Dubois6139117
Marshall5954111
Dearborn577177
Cass5769105
Henry5671102
Noble555783
Jackson499672
Shelby488196
Lawrence4470120
Gibson433791
Harrison432972
Clinton426353
DeKalb423284
Montgomery423088
Whitley392739
Huntington386380
Steuben381057
Miami379165
Knox370990
Jasper361347
Putnam357760
Wabash352478
Adams340354
Ripley338370
Jefferson328481
White312254
Daviess294399
Wells290281
Decatur282992
Fayette278362
Greene276085
Posey270733
Scott264453
LaGrange263870
Clay258945
Randolph239581
Washington239131
Spencer230431
Jennings228848
Starke213252
Fountain211846
Sullivan210442
Owen195856
Fulton194240
Jay190429
Carroll187820
Perry182537
Orange181854
Rush172625
Vermillion167643
Franklin167235
Tipton161945
Parke145416
Blackford134332
Pike132634
Pulaski115945
Newton106734
Brown101441
Crawford99014
Benton98114
Martin87415
Warren80515
Switzerland7808
Union70610
Ohio56211
Unassigned0413

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1077284

Reported Deaths: 19344
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1251861392
Cuyahoga1110942107
Hamilton796611200
Montgomery511561012
Summit46842933
Lucas41780782
Butler38228580
Stark32099907
Lorain24828480
Warren24214297
Mahoning21403586
Lake20518368
Clermont19704238
Delaware18463131
Licking16373210
Fairfield16083199
Trumbull15966466
Medina15192262
Greene14991244
Clark13927297
Wood13020188
Portage12772201
Allen11564231
Richland11277198
Miami10652215
Muskingum8783132
Wayne8738210
Columbiana8735229
Pickaway8527121
Marion8494135
Tuscarawas8459243
Erie7831154
Hancock6880126
Ross6821152
Ashtabula6756169
Geauga6659148
Scioto6385101
Belmont5828167
Union569347
Lawrence5536102
Jefferson5481151
Huron5409119
Darke5333122
Sandusky5316120
Seneca5248121
Athens518058
Washington5137109
Auglaize487084
Mercer479085
Shelby466893
Knox4472110
Madison434761
Putnam4260100
Ashland420989
Fulton419869
Defiance416597
Crawford3954106
Brown391857
Logan380676
Preble378298
Clinton369861
Ottawa365779
Highland352761
Williams337075
Champaign329258
Guernsey314453
Jackson311651
Perry294250
Morrow283639
Fayette280649
Hardin269864
Henry267766
Coshocton263858
Holmes2587101
Van Wert242463
Pike237233
Adams235852
Gallia235148
Wyandot230654
Hocking214662
Carroll190947
Paulding171140
Meigs144339
Noble133437
Monroe130642
Morgan108223
Harrison107337
Vinton82015
Unassigned02
Fort Wayne
Clear
51° wxIcon
Hi: 59° Lo: 46°
Feels Like: 51°
Angola
Clear
48° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 42°
Feels Like: 45°
Huntington
Clear
48° wxIcon
Hi: 58° Lo: 45°
Feels Like: 47°
Decatur
Clear
51° wxIcon
Hi: 59° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 51°
Van Wert
Partly Cloudy
52° wxIcon
Hi: 60° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 52°
Shower and thunderstorm chances increase Thursday afternoon.
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