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tv   CNN Newsroom  CNN  December 14, 2012 6:00am-8:00am PST

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>> why did you go back to covering war? i would think that would make you never ever do that again. >> you always think you can manage the risks. >> thanks so much. we have to take a break. we're going to hand it off to "cnn newsroom" and don lemon. see everybody back here monday morning. don, good morning. >> have a great weekend as well. good morning to you. happening now in "the newsroom" a crumbling regime, the threat of chemical weapons. the u.s. rushes to protect an ally that shares a border with syria. susan rice bows out. john kerry gets a lot of buzz. who will be the next secretary of state. it works like a printer and plastic parts. some worry it will make plastic guns. ♪ we've been in the sky for our love ♪ -- >> what's up? how are you doing?
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>> imagine that, what would you do if stevie wonder walked into your recording session. c "en newsroom" starts right now. good morning, everyone, from washington, i'm don lemon. carol is off today. we begin this hour with spiraling concerns over syria and a desperate regime trying to hold on to power. this morning, washington announces it's deploying two patriot missile batteries and 400 troops to our nato ally turkey. it will bolster defenses to syria against its scud missiles and possible chemical weapons. >> it's a challenging time. it's a challenging time. it's a critical time. we just announced, just announced this morning that we are deploying two patriot batteries here to turkey, along
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with the troops that are necessary to man those batteries so that we can help turkey have the kind of missile defense it may very well need in dealing with threats that come out of syria. >> to cnn's nick paton walsh in beirut following the latest developments. nick is on the phone, what can you tell us? >> we don't know the exact location where the american troops are going to be stationed but the german parliament ratified part of its contribution, there will be three nato nations giving troops toward this. the u.s. two batteries and 400 troops, the germans are expected to make a similar contribution as well as the netherlands as well. it puts nato forces in the volume tire area. the back story how we got to here two months ago there were exchanges of fire, the syrian army accused of shelling areas inside turkey, causing destruction and injury to
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turkey, and turkey firing back and asking for nato backup. there was never any doubt nato would come to turkey. we have a substantial manpower and weaponry right on the syrian border. nato very clear it's purely for defense of turkey, not meant to enforce what people are saying might be a no fly zone. you heart secretary of defense leon pa net ta, concerns of chemical weapons use. the u.s. has a plan to respond. not clear if patriots will be involved but certainly in this 21-month-long revolt, nato, the biggest machinery in the world in that volatile area. >> nick paton walsh, thank you very much. in washington a withdrawal and a surrender. ambassador susan rice drops out of the running for secretary of state. the job seemed to be hers but then there was a dead lay tack on its u.s. consulate in libya, days after u.s. ambassador chris stevens and three other ericans were killed, rice said
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it was a spontaneous protest that got out of hand rather than a planned terrorist attack. republicans say she was lying to downplay her boss's failed policies. rice defends her handling even now. >> i was very careful to explain that the information was preliminary, and it could change and yet i think it was misconstrued and contorted into something much more nefarious that was never indeed the case nor my intention. >> well the backlash against rice only grew after she met with concerned lawmakers behind close doors. the odds of a confirmation had grown so bleak the white house never went through a formal nomination. >> i hadn't made a decision about who would be my next secretary of state. there's no doubt that susan was qualified. there are other people who are qualified as well. her interest is in serving me, but most importantly serving the country and she's done an outstanding job.
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i could not be prouder with her. she will continue to be one of the top members of my national security team. >> we are covering all angles with foreign affairs reporter alyse lavitt and brianna keilar. briana, the president was vocal in his support. after two months, a lack of confidence here? >> reporter: i think definitely there was a lack of confidence, that this was a fight that the president wanted to have right now. it's obvious that president obama has a great affinity for ambassador rice. you can see that when he talks about her. he came to her defense in the last month quite a bit but i think there was a lot of concern about the timing and whether this was a fight that he wanted to have. he had said in his first, in his press conference following his re-election that if he thought she was the best person for the job, that he would nominate her but he went on to not pin himself in, not to make a
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decision, and some of the critics who were in the corner of susan rice say this may have actually sealed her fate. she ended up heading up to capitol hill trying to defend herself against her role immediately following what happened in benghazi and trying to explain that on behalf of the administration. when she went up to capitol hill to meet with lawmakers the visits backfired. they raised a lot of questions and she was there to try to answer them and try to assuage concerns, that was true with senator susan hollins of maine, a republican but a moderate and that was seen as very troubling in all of this process. some critic also say, don, that without the nomination, she was left twisting in the wind but there's also this sense that president obama has a whole lot on his plate. he's obviously involved in this fight over the striking a deal on the fiscal cliff, and then going into next year, a lot of goals obviously to follow on that entitlement reform,
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spending cuts, tax reform and don't forget immigration reform is also a priority, so i think there was a sense that do you really spend all of this political capital on this fight when there's so many other things to do. >> and so she referenced that as well in her letter that she put out yesterday. alyse, you cover the state department. who is on the short list to be nominated here? john kerry of course. >> well, don, he's really the only name on the short list. senator kerry as the chair of the senate foreign relations committee has a lot of world stature, has a lot of relationships with world leaders and in the past he's really done a lot for president obama. if you remember, when john kerry was running for president in 2004, he gave then senator obama his first kind of shot on the world stage at the democratic convention. he's also been president obama's partner in terms of prepping for the debate. he served in as mitt romney, and also senator kerry has also done a lot of work for the
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administration in terms of troubleshooting around the world. this guy got afghan president hamid karzai to agree to a runoff election. he meets with the pakistanis whenever there is a problem, met with bashar al assad at one point. so he's really seen as although susan rice was seen as someone who could have been the president's first choice he's certainly a candidate that is up to the task and has a lot of foreign policy credibility around the world. don? >> elise labott and brianna keilar thanks oboth of you. when it comes to the fiscal cliff still no deal and now the debt ceiling is caught in the cross-fire here. specifically a part of the white house's fiscal cliff plan that would give the president the power to increase the debt limit without congress that is. boehner making it clear that it is not up for a debate. >> do you think that senator reid or then senator obama would have ever given to president george w. bush the unlimited
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ability to raise the debt limit? i know they're talking about doing it now. do you think there's any chance that senator reid or then senator obama would have done that? zero. congress is never going to give up our ability to control the purse. >> so for president obama's part, he is digging in as well on an area that has been key sticking point and that's taxes. >> the most important thing we can do right now is make sure that middle class taxes do not go up. that's the best thing for the economy, best thing for american families and if we do that, senate's already passed this bill. house democrats are ready to pass t i'm ready to sign it. the only holdouts are the house republicans. if we get that done that will take the edge off things. we'll still have to deal with deficit and debt problems. 98% of americans, 97% of small businesses will not see their taxes go up. we should get that done.
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>> the house is scheduled to go home for the year today but house majority leader eric cantor says members could be working longer with the fiscal cliff still unresolved. do you know this man? it could be worth $5,000 to you. the fbi is hoping the reward will lead to an arrest of a robber who has hit 13 banks from virginia to california. he's being called the ray bandit because of his big sunglasses and differing disguises. a funny moment from the cincinnati bengals -- fill eagles game. the helmets of andre smith and brandon graham got stuck together. the ref had to help separate hem. graham chuckled about it. the woeful eagles didn't have much more to laugh about in this game, five turnovers and lost to the bengals 34-13. two 11-year-old boys, that trophy they're holding is 13,000 years old, 13,000 years old.
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because it's from troy, michigan, they were scouring a creek stumbled across a bone from a macedon, an elephant like beast that died 10,000 years ago. they're calling it the coolest show and tell item ever. you can make part of a semiautomatic rifle using a 3-d printer. lawmakers fear it's a matter of time before people start making homemade guns.
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checking our top stories for you now we have new video of the crash that killed dallas cowboy jerry brown jr., led to a manslaughter investigation against his teammate josh brent shown on the right. 911 tapes show witnesses frantically calling for help early saturday morning near dallas. >> is it s anybody injured? >> i don't know. i just drove past it, it looked like it just happened, there was a car upside down and there was smoke everywhere. >> brent was arrested and accused of driving drunk. family members say he and brown
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were best friends. the mall in oregon where the shooting rampage took place will reopen in a few hours. tuesday a man shot and killed two people in a rampage and killed himself. several mall workers say they're hesitant about returning to the mall. attorney general eric holder facing harsh criticism from a top republican after failing to pursue criminal charges against hsbc. the bank admits laundering money from iran, libya and myanmar. chuck grassley calls the lack of charges a declaration that "crime does pay." the justice department did not comment but defends its nearly $2 billion settlement with the bank. two massachusetts costco workers are splitting a $50 million powerball prize. rosa deleon buys two tickets every day and shares them with her co-worker reginald. on wednesday the tickets finally
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paid off. the two will each get $11 million after taxes. congratulations to them. very lucky. there is a machine that could one day be used to make homemade guns, not only that, it could make plastic guns that a metal detector won't find. you can believe some people are worried about it. here is joe johns with more. >> reporter: in the this northern virginia gun store you can buy all sorts of weapons but what if you could make weapons in your own home using a three-dimensional printer. sounds like science fiction but to some it's not far-fetched. >> primarily 3-d printers are used to manufacture parts for antique cars. >> you think our killer printed a gun. >> multiple guns, identical disposable untraceable. >> reporter: it could also be undetectable. 3-d printers make solid objects from digital models and plans and what's manufactured could be
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all plastic like this little gadget with all these moving parts that work together perfectly. so a plastic gun manufactured with this technology might not necessarily be picked up by your garden variety metal detector at an airport or public building. it's a potential game changer in the gun control debate. >> we're trying to produce guns with this technology. >> reporter: advocates of the printable gun like university of texas student cody wilson see it as a rights issue. >> i believe in the universal access to arms and as far as it's possible for me this will be completely unable to be regulated. >> reporter: he's behind defense distributed, a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating what wilson called the wikiweapon, a firearm with a design that can be distributed on the internet and manufactured using a 3-d printer. he's already built part of an ar-15 using the technology. democratic congressman steve israel has taken notice. >> i want to make it impossible for people to use
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three-dimensional printers to manufacture gun components which was done and six bullets were fired from one of these components. >> reporter: that's why congressman israel is pushing to renew the undetectable firearms act a law passed a quarter of a century ago banning plastic firearms that will expire next year. >> defies common sense, safety and logic to make it easier for criminals to manufacture the components of guns which could be brought on to our planes and buildings. >> reporter: pro gun advocates say to date no one using a 3-d printer has manufactured a working firearm completely out of plastic. one 3-d printing expert says it might not even be possible any time soon. >> i don't feel this technology is going to be there next year but in my estimation we have time and ways to go to get there. >> reporter: wilson worries about the chilling effect of new ideas.
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mr. israel says we should prevent the development of a whole branch of technology. he's ridiculous. don't count the twinkie out just yet. which big named companies may be bidding on hostess, the iconic snackmaker. people have doubts about taking aspirin for pain.
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if you thought twinkies and ding dongs wereone for good, there's still hope. two familiar faces have emerged as potential bidders for the now bankrupt hostess company. maribal, who are the potential buyers? >> there's still hope. there are about two dozen bidders, walmart and kroger in the mix, other first round bidders, groupo bimbo, and alpha baking company. it's just talk right now, don, but this is exactly what we expected the maker of twinkies and ding dongs is in the process of liquidating. the company can be chopped off and sold off in businesses. since hostess is bankrupt the pieces come at rock bottom
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prices. makes twinkies an attractive buy. >> what is the likelihood maribel the brands will survive? >> pretty good. there's still value, twinkie, ding dongs, ho-hos. before they went under they had $2 aboutle in annual sales. there's still a market. the problem with hostess was their cost structure. they had plants spread across dozens of states, not exactly efficient and the companies said labor costs were the major issues. we might see it start to play out, the last batch of twinkies hit stores in chicago this week. the lines they were out the door and wednesday they were all sold out. >> maribel thank you very much, appreciate it. a critical day for health care reform as states decide to take part in a key portion of president obama's affordable care act. we'll explain how it could affect you. so now i can be in the scene.
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good morning i'm.lemon. stories in the newsroom, opening bell to ring soon on wall street, we should hear it any second. stocks are set to open higher today following news that manufacturing is picking up in china. gains are expected to be modest, though as the fiscal cliff issue remains unresolved. the u.s. is showing its support for turkey in the face of potential threats from syria. the u.s. milltory will deploy 400 troops to turkey in the coming weeks. the patriot the missile system would be used only for defense. president obama is speaking out about marriage marriage for the first time since colorado and washington state legalized it. he told abc's barbara walters he discourages drug use and regrets doing it as a kid but says it's
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not a top priority for the feds to prosecute recreational users in states that have legalized the substance. we're awaiting word on the next round of fiscal cliff negotiations. president obama and house speaker john boehner metaphor just under an hour at the white house late yesterday afternoon. still no deal. aides for both men describe the session as frank and say the lines of communication will stay open. the law of the land, that's how house speaker john boehner described the affordable care act, it overhauled the nation's health care system and today marks a critical milestone in the implementation of that act. states must decide whether they will set up their own exchanges which will require residents to select a health care plan. our senior medical correspondent elizabeth cohen joins me with more. what are the exchanges and how do they work? >> an exchange is you go online and you buy insurance because the whole point of obama care is
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every american is supposed to be insured by the time this is done. so let's take a look at the basics of the exchanges. it's for people who are not getting their insurance through their employer and the providers, the insurers have to take you. they can't tell you no because they have a preexisting condition and can't charge you more which is a huge change from the way it is now and you will get a subsidy to help you buy that insurance if your family makes under approximately $92,000 for a family of four. now you were referring to who is going to run these exchanges? let's take a look at a map. this map shows the states in green have basically told the federal government we want to you do it. you guys organize these and run these. the states in white are going to run their own exchanges on their own or they've teamed up with other states. don? >> all right, elizabeth cohen, thank you very much. joining me now is joel ario, former director with the department of health and human services and currently managing director of men at health
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solutions. joe you also worked as insurance commissioner in pennsylvania and oregon. from your experience, you say there are a few reasons why states should set up the exchanges. what are they? >> i think there are two main reasons and relate to programs that states have traditional managed themselves. the first is the commercial insurance markets states have for more than a century now managed their own commercial insurance market and that means since the health care really became a big deal in the 1950s, states have primarily been in charge of that market. the exchanges fit into that market and if states maintain control over the exchanges, they then have a coordinated enforcement and implementation of laws across the commercial marketplace. if the federal government comes in and runs this particular program, then there get to be coordination issues, two levels of government directly involved in the day-to-day activity and that's probably not in the end good for the consumer. the second reason is the state
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medicaid programs, the exchanges work both for people to get commercial tax credits if they're above 138% of poverty but less than 400% of poverty shall. if they're below 138% of poverty, they have coverage under the medicaid program, so again, if states are running the medicaid program and the exchanges, there can be a more coordinated approach as people move back and forth between them, if the federal government runs the exchange and the state runs the medicaid program, then there's again some handoffs and potential for the consumer to be not as well served. i do think the federal government will do a good job but they -- excuse me -- >> that's all right your phone went off. >> they do have a more difficult time if the state, if there's a coordination between the two programs. >> let me jump in here because everything you're saying sounds complicated. i don't know how people are going to figure this out. obviously you're an expert here but on to something that's in more layman's terms here, what
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about the argument that this is an example of the federal government interfering with state control. what do you say to that? >> if you look at the way health insurance works today it's a rich mix of state and federal control. we do like the fact that under federal law consumer privacy is protected under a law that passed in 1996. there are a number of other federal law that passed, one that requires states to make sure that in the small group market nobody can be excluded, no business can be excluded because they have one sick person. now that federal requirement is being extended to the individual market, so there are some new federal regulations in this program but it's not a new precedent. today the state officials when i was insurance commissioner in pennsylvania i enforced both state and federal law, what most mattered to me was my ability to enforce that law to the benefit of consumers across the commercial marketplace, and even though some of it was enforced
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in federal law it still was the day-to-day control was with me and my department in pennsylvania. >> joel ario, thank you very much. appreciate you coming on. he's known for spotting talent. now l.a. reid says he's done with judging on "x factor." we'll tell you why.
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president obama and house speaker john boehner meeting for nearly an hour yesterday evening in a fiscal cliff showdown, with 18 days remaining before we go over the edge, both sides say the lines of communication remain open. most of us have been stressing over the thousands of extra dollars we may have to fork over to uncle sam next year, but along with sequestration comes sweeping spending cuts, too, and that has the defense department up in arms. here's pentagon correspondent chris lawrence.
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>> reporter: to hear the pentagon tell it -- >> sequestration therefore if it were allowed to happen would introduce senseless chaos. >> reporter: the fiscal cliff -- >> sequestration will have a chaotic effect on the force. >> reporter: is akin to armageddon. >> what i worry about is being blind-sided by a huge cut because they don't have the strength or the courage or the guts to do what they have to do. >> happy holidays. >> reporter: the cliff would cut $500 billion in defense spending, but spread out over the next ten years. would these cuts really be that bad? >> absolutely not. >> reporter: analyst ben freeman argues the pentagon can survive on a smaller budget. >> sequestration happens it will drop a little bit but it's certainly not catastrophic or doomsday or any other sort of hyperbole they want to describe it as. >> reporter: perhaps the navy would have to buy less expensive, less advanced fighter jets instead of the new f-35.
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or the pentagon would have to cut the number of soldiers and marines back to the levels before 9/11. >> sequestration would risk hollowing out our force. >> reporter: pentagon officials say going over the cliff would actually leave them a trillion dollars in the hole, because it comes on top of cuts they've already budgeted for. >> we've put in place $487 billion in savings over the next ten years. >> reporter: are these "cuts" the same sort of budget cuts that you and i think of when we think of cutting our budget? >> i call them phantom cuts because it's not a real savings. >> reporter: freeman says the pentagon is counting money it was projecting to spend as savings which he says isn't the same as simply spending less. >> but this is the way d.c. does math. it's unfortunate that you or i can't do our taxes like that but it's the way they seem to do business here. >> a senior defense official admits that everyone at the pentagon from the secretary on
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down is on autopilot to defend their budget. even though he feels that they need people to go in and challenge their costs, he argues that's better done over time, not forced on them by the fiscal cliff. chris lawrence, cnn, the pentagon. >> all right, chris. are you worried air fares might rise with fewer airlines taking to the skies? what a report found that just might surprise you. i had three kids. and she became the full time mother of three. it was soccer, and ballet, and cheerleading, and baseball. those years were crazy. so, as we go into this next phase, you know, a big part of it for us is that there isn't anything on the schedule.
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some big changes are coming to the "x factor." record executive l.a. reid sayses he's not coming back for another season. a.j. hammer of "showbiz tonight" is in new york. >> "the x factor" has had a few shakeups in the past year. judge l.a. reid is leaving after the season wraps up.
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they're in the second season. this was confirmed by a spokesperson for epic records where reid is the chairman and ceo. we're told he made the decision so he could concentrate on his responsibilities with the record labels. obviously a pretty big job and keeps him busy so the label teld us reid really needs to turn his full attention to his day job. now the show has seen quite a few other changes over the past year, some turnover with britney spears and demi lovato. two new hosts, khloe kardashian odum and reid enjoyed the final broadcast and good news for him winding things down to see country singer tate stevens being voted by fans into next week's finals so the third season of "x factor" firing up without l.a. reid and at this point it's anyone's guess who will replace him.
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>> is the show not doing well? what is going on? >> from the beginning it never up with simon cowell's expectations and what he put out for the hopes for the ratings that the show would see and i think l.a. reid, you watch him on the show and sometimes you wonder, does he really want to be doing this? he's a great judge, i think he calls it like he sees it but he has a big day job, running a record label. >> it was interesting when they brought him on, seemed like an odd fit. harry potter the highest grossing franchise of all time? >> foshds released its list of the highest global box office franchises, harry potter on top, ranked number one, earnings of $7.7 billion, as you see it's followed by "star wars" $4.5 billion, the third is the james bond films also the longest lasting and in the span of 50 years they've done 24 films staring seven dashing action
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heroes followed by "pirates of the caribbean" and "batman" in fifth place. even though "harry potter" is the highest grossing franchise, "lord of the rings" is a serious contender. new films on the way. the franchise ranks ninth, earnings of almost $3 billion but "the hobbit" three-part series which hits theaters today has the potential to make "lorld of the rings" one of the most lucrative franchises of all-time and i certainly know they're going to do huge box office, it will be an easy win for number one this weekend, don. >> goodness gracious, we are in the wrong business. my goodness. thank you, a.j. next hour, a.j. has the story of a man caught trying to break into taylor swift's home and he was armed with a knife. checking our top stories right now the deejays who pranked the hospital where prince william's pregnant wife was staying saying they are not getting death
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threats so the deejays and ten station executives have hired bodyguards and some reports say the deejays have been moved to a safehouse. the nurse who anded the prank call committed suicide last week. a u.s. veteran says he's been put on the fbi's no fly list and doesn't know why. he held a press conference in oklahoma city, they said the fbi and law enforcement officials followed and harassed long and his sister. in a statement the fbi says it does not violate anyone's civil rights. louisiana governor bobby jindal says birth control should be sold over the counter. in a "wall street journal" op-ed he writes the political battle over health insurance coverage for contraception wouldn't be repeated if women could buy it without a prescription as and a conservative republican i believe that we have been stupid to let the democrats demagogue the contraceptives issue and pretend, during debates about health care insurance, that republicans are somehow against
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birth control." the twinkie and other hostess brand treats could be back in your lunch bag, they're hoping. bloomberg news reports walmart and kroger are among the bidders for the iconic brand. hostess began to wind down its operation last month after failing to resolve a contract dispute with its bakers union. hostess will auction brands like twinkies and cupcakes early next year. a new report says just because there are fewer airlines, that doesn't mean air fares have gone sky high. mabibel aber is at the nasdaq marketsite following this story. maribel what did the report find? >> it may feel like you're paying more but it's from pricewater house coopers. there have been a lot of mergers. delta and northwest, continental
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and united, southwest and airtran. whenever we've heard about an airline merger, people think less competition and higher prices. "usa today" says the dramatic price increases that some people expected they just haven't happened and now yes prices are higher. the thing is not that much. domestic ticket prices have been rising only 1.8% a year so that's less than the rate of inflation. also want to point out when a carrier moves out of the market another one usually moves in, and so that's maintaining the competition. don? >> all right, thank you, maribel. the angels make josh hamilton the $125 million man. can the huge offseason signing lead to post season success? we'll talk about it. anncr: some politicians seem to think medicare and...
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social security are just numbers in a budget. well, we worked hard for those benefits. we earned them. and if washington tries to cram decisions about the future... of these programs into a last minute budget deal... we'll all pay the price. aarp is fighting to protect seniors with responsible... solutions that strengthen medicare and... social security for generations to come. we can do better than a last minute deal... that would hurt all of us.
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. new york knicks fans have something to cheer for a change. the knicks are living in the
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penthouse of the nbc's eastern conference and last night won a state game. vince joins me now. hello, sir. nba hoops are hot again in new york. what's up with that? >> that's a good thing, i tell you. it's good for the entire league. when the knicks are playing well, the nba is very, very happy. thursday night it was the knicks taking on the visiting los angeles lakers. the interesting point was, the laker coach coming back, the coach against the team that he walked away from in march. the lakers are struggling and did last night. the mvp candidate, carmelo anthony, sprained his knee. kobe bryant is beyond frustrated
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with his team. >> every game for us has a lot of meaning to it at this point. i don't think -- maybe if we were rolling, playing well it probably has added significance. but at this point, you know, i wish we had the washington generals on our schedule. >> it's not going to be washington generals but rather the washington wizards. pick up tickets. they are there in town. you can watch them. >> can we talk about this huge signing in baseball, josh hamilton, $25 million a year? >> yeah. i think you're worth what someone is willing to pay. josh has been a tremendous power hitter for a number of years. five years, $125 million. he's headed to a division rival. that makes it even more interesting. the dodgers have been doing a lot of the free agent signing. it's the angels getting hamilton
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to sign a powerful lineup. the angels making noise in town and they are also now heating up a division rivalry with the texas rangers. meanwhile, former angel, now detroit tiger torii hunter said this, i was told money was tight but i guess the arte had money hidden under a mattress. business is business. but don't lie. >> someone is all upset when someone else gets big money. >> what do we say? i don't know what the specifics are but don't hate the player. hate the game. it is sports. president obama spoke about the nhl lockout yesterday. listen to this. >> the president of the united states shouldn't have to get
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involved in a sport lockout. my message is, you guys make a lot of money and you make a lot of money on the back of fans. so do right by your fans. >> so they've missed about half a season now. can that help, the president's comments? >> you know, i wish it could help. both management and players understand what it at stake here. i don't know if it's going to move things along. 90 days now they have had the work stoppage and the nhl is the only league to lockout players for an entire season. >> that's going to do it. go to including a bizarre story between a television reporter and newspaper story questioning robert griffin iii's blackness.
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g >> i heard that on the radio. i'm like, really? well, it is sports, as we say. thank you. >> don, thank you. have a great weekend. >> you, too. ♪ >> it may be some of the most precious silence ever captured in a recording studio. we'll tell you about stevie wonder's surprise appearance. i'm gonna stand up to her! no you're not. i know. you know ronny folks who save hundreds of dollars switching to geico sure are happy. how happy are they jimmy? happier than a witch in a broom factory. get happy. get geico. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more. since ameriprise financial was founded back in 1894, they've been committed to putting clients first. helping generations through tough times. good times. never taking a bailout.
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shaul, your alabama hospitality is incredible. thanks, karen. love your mississippi outdoors. i vote for your florida beaches, dawn. bill, this louisiana seafood is delicious. we're having such a great year on the gulf, we've decided to put aside our rivalry. now is the perfect time to visit anyone of our states. the beaches and waters couldn't be more beautiful. take a boat ride, go fishing or just lay in the sun. we've got coastline to explore and wildlife to photograph. and there's world class dining with our world famous seafood. so for a great vacation this year, come to the gulf. its all fabulous but i give florida the edge. right after mississippi. you mean alabama. say louisiana or there's no dessert. this invitation is brought to you by bp and all of us who call the gulf home. [ male announcer ] born from the elements. ♪ destined to take them over.
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the uconnect command center with sirius xm satellite radio in the new 2013 ram 1500. engineered to move heaven and earth. guts. glory. ram. an aspiring teen artist may have gotten the surprise of his life. here's jean yne moos. >> reporter: he's a 14-year-old up and comer singer and when his record management told him to come to l.a. and record a stevie wonder song, he didn't wonder. he just did it and walked with his eyes closed right into the mother of all pranks of having your idol suddenly materialize
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as you're singing a song can be called a prank. ♪ >> son, how you doing? >> pinch me. pinch me. >> pinch you? >> can i have a hug? >> what's up, man? >> oh! >> reporter: even after the hug, it doesn't hurt to double-check. >> stevie wonder? >> reporter: i was waiting for you to ask for his license it turns out they begged stevie wonder's manager to listen to his videos. after listening, he he agreed to show up and surprise the kid. >> that was just blind blowing. >> reporter: and then stevie played while assan sang.
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it turns out this wasn't the first time that stevie wonder has done this. oprah calls it one of her favorite moments, star search champion singing stevie wonder's "isn't she wonderful." ♪ >> oh, my gosh! >> reporter: eventually they turned it into a duet. the prank on assan was an attempt by his record company to create a viral video but his mom cried and so did assan. ♪ >> reporter: to them the surprise was nothing less than stevie wonderful.
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cnn, jeanne moos, new york. >> he's right. that was awesome. and the next hour of the cnn "newsroom" begins right now. and happening in the newsroom, a crumbling regime and a threat of chemical weapons as the u.s. rushes to protect an ally that shares a border with syria. susan rice withdraws her name to replace hillary clinton. president obama's short list just got a lot shorter. we've got bigger fish to fry. that's what he president obama told barbara walters about going after recreation flat pot smokers in colorado and washington where it's legal. a lot of americans believe the mayans may be right.
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cnn "newsroom" starts right now. good morning, everyone, from washington i'm don lemon in the place where the biggest story is happening this hour. susan rice drops out of the running for secretary of state. the job seemed to be hers. but then there was a deadly attack on the consulate in libya. days later, u.s. ambassador chris stevens and three other americans were killed. rice said it was a spontaneous attack that got out of hand rather than a planned attack. rice defends her handling even now. >> i was very careful to explain that the information was preliminary and it could change and yet i think it was misconstrued and con torted into something more nefarious that was never indeed the case nor my intention. >> well, the backlash against
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rice only grew after she met with concerned lawmakers behind closed doors. the odds of a confirmation had grown so bleak the white house never went through a formal nomination. >> i hadn't made a decision about who would be my next secretary of state. there's no doubt that susan was qualified. there are other people who are qualified as well. her interest is more in is serving the country than me. she will continue to be one of my top members of the national security team. >> so who is on the list to replace secretary of state hillary clinton? jill dougherty is joining us. hi, jill. >> hi, don. of course that name is john kerry, a heavyweight in foreign policy and maybe it's funny that he looks like a secretary of state with that gray hair, very tall, distinguished but more seriously, he does know the
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issues. he's been involved in these issues -- world issues for a long time. he's kind of a surrogate for the administration, including being kind of an unofficial envoy on afghanistan and pakistan. and the ties to mr. obama go way back. you could say go back to the 2004 election when senator kerry took barack obama on the map by giving him a chance to speak at the convention. so that's one factor. i think you would say that he's a very likely candidate nobody thinks that he'll have any trouble sailing through in the senate. >> and after all, john mccain did say -- did call him and jokingly he said, mr. secretary, when they were in the middle of a conference recently. so chans are that he may -- he may go through without any problem. >> yes. although, ironically, remember back in 2004 when he was, quote,
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swift-boated by republicans criticizing him for his military factor. now it's pretty much a love fest and he looks like he really would be the candidate. no question. >> jill, you know this. washington is like the weather. if you don't like it, stick around. it will change. you're right about that. jill dougherty, thank you very much. 18 days to go and still no deal and now the debt ceiling is in the mix here. house speaker john boehner says no way. >> do you think that senator reid or then senator obama would have ever given to president george w. bush the unlimited ability to raise the debt limit? i know they are talking about
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doing oh it now. do you think there's any chance that then senator reid or obama would have done that? never. congress is never going to give up our ability to control the purse. >> meanwhile, president obama is holding firm on his plans to keep middle class tax rates steady. >> the most important thing we can do right now is make sure that middle class taxes don't go up. it's the best thing for the economy, american families, and if we do that, senate has already passed this bill. house democrats are ready to pass it. the only holdout are the house republicans. if we get that done, that will take the edge off things. we'll have to deal with deficit problems but 98% of americans, 97% of small businesses will not see their taxes go up. we should get that done. >> well, the house is scheduled to go home for the year today but house majority leader eric cantor said members could keep on working with the fiscal cliff still unresolved.
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now a desperate regime holding on to power. washington is deploying two patriot missiles to our ally, turkey. the arsenal of scud missiles and possible chemical weapons. >> this is a challenging time. it's a challenging time. it's a critical time. we just announced this morning that we are deploying two patriot to turkey along with the troops necessary to man those batteries so we can help turkey have the kind of missile defense it may very well need in dealing with threats that come out of syria. >> let's go to beirut now. nick paton walsh is following the latest developments for us.
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nick, what do you know? >> reporter: we don't exactly know where these troops are going to be placed on the turkish side of the border but it's pritly likely they will be placed within the next few weeks into early next year. we know that germany and net they are netherlands are onset to deploy their troops as well. this is an incredible volatile area. remember, this all started because two months ago there were exchanges of fire between the turkish and syrian fire often by syrian military. they asked for help from nato and now they got what they asked for. we're hearing from secretary of defense leon panetta that there is a plan for the youu.s. to ge involved if chemical weapons are used. it's not clear if the patriots will be involved in that.
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they are designed to take out missiles. we're seeing an he escalation n and contributing military means to the area. certainly tensions are even higher on that border. don? >> nick paton walsh, thank you. president barack obama speaking out about recreational marijuana use. in an interview with barbara walters, the president said the u.s. government has, quote, bigger fish to fry than going after users. >> you know, the federal government has a lot to do when it comes to criminal prosecutions. it does not make sense from a prioritization point of view for us to focus on recreational drug users in a state that has already said that under state law that's legal. >> this is the first time the president has spoken on the issue since colorado and washington legalized recreational use of marijuana.
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the u.s. geological service says a pair of earthquakes measuring 6.4 and 6.1 in magnitude struck off baja, california, earlier this morning. they were followed by smaller aftershocks. no tsunami warning has been issued and no damage reported. if you're flying anywhere for the holiday, you better hope you got your christmas bonus early. fares are up to an average of $414 for a round trip ticket. yes, it's true. they are expensive lately. that's up 9% from last year. a marine is denied the prestigious medal of honor after he paid the ultimate price, fighting for his country. we'll have his story next. jill d a great life. but she has some dental issues she's not happy about. so i introduced jill to crest pro-health for life. selected for people over 50. pro-health for life is a toothpaste that defends against
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stories. there could be a key deal next month which would allow inspectors access to a military site where the west is suspecting nuclear materials.
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north korea celebrates a rocket launch that put a satellite into orbit. crowds were shown clapping and cheering as officials made congratulatory speeches. the success for the mission is up for debate. the u.s. believes that north korea may not have full control of the satellite. do you know this man? take a look. if so, your information could be worth $5,000. the fbi is hoping the reward will lead to the arrest of a robber who has hit 13 banks from virginia all the way to california. he is being called the ray bandit because of his sunglasses. a mall in oregon where the shooting rampage occurred will reopen in a few hours. several mall workers say they are hesitant about returning to the mall. an update to controversial story that we told you about
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yesterday. a marine who died while fighting in iraq. we're talking about a sergeant and marines and fellow soldiers say that he deserves the medal. >> one of the insurgents threw a grenade into where he was lying and that's when he pulled it under himself and saved pretty much everyone in the room, myself and other marines in the house all owe him our lives. >> but secretary leon panetta says there's too much conflicting evidence. it indicates that he may have been brain dead before he fell on the grenade. other evidence is that the grenade didn't even explode underneath him. joining me now is george, a representative for the family. >> thank you very much for having me on. >> let me read a response to you
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from secretary panetta. in light of the strict standards that have been established for awarding the medal of honor, i cannot in good conscience change the recommendation of secretary robert gates. how does the family feel about this? >> the family is very upset because the family believes the marines that were there, the ones that were actually inside the house on that day, november 15th, 2004. and forensic evidence and second guessing will never change their views on what happened that day. >> this is a second time that peralta has been denied the medal of honor. >> we marines believe in honor. as long as there is a marine corps, there will be a marine fighting for sergeant peralta and right now a former marine is the one leading the fight for
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him. >> do you think it's important that the defense department is trying to uphold a standard for the medal of honor? >> the department of defense always says that the standard has never changed. they are absolutely right about that. but what has changed is the procedures to get to that standard. in world war ii it took months. today it takes years to award a medal of honor. >> four of the witnesses apparently give a mostly consistent account of what happened. so why do you think a medical examiner's report is given so much weight? >> the medal examiner, when he gave that report, he didn't have the benefit of sergeant peralta's body. he gave a report based on combat information. during that battle of falluja, the battle was still going on. he rendered an opinion with incomplete information and that's why we believe that the
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video that was shot that day is compelling evidence that sergeant peralta rates medal. >> as you know, he was honored with a navy cross. not enough though, you believe? >> the navy cross, if he doesn't rate the medal of honor, in reality, sergeant peralta does not deserve the navy cross. however, to civilians and the department of defense did not approve a medal of honor. >> thank you very much for your time, sir. we appreciate you joining us. >> thank you for having me. >> yeah, thank you. in other news now, floods, fire, and a massive drought. the effects of climate change or something more. is it more significant? why some say this year's wild weather could have biblical implications.
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oh, my god. >> okay. that was the classic film "2012." it's full of death-defying escapes and the earth disappearing literally beneath the actors' feet. it's hollywood's take on the apocolypse but some say the end of days may be less about special effects and more about extreme weather like superstorm sandy and the floods that plagued the south and the east. you saw all of those special effects there and that's what they think it's going to be like. robert, your organization completed a survey that shows that more than a third of americans believe that the natural disasters is evidence of
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end times. >> you're right. more than one-third, 33%, said that increasing of storms really is evidence of the end times, that is the beginning of the end as we know it. that's more than 85 million americans. among this group, one really stands out. that is white evangelical protestants. more than one-third believe this as a minority of protestants. it's far from being a fringe belief in america. >> has there been any shift in attitudes that is, do more americans believe in a biblical explanation rather than just global warming, something that we can fix? do they think it a biblical explanation? >> we asked this question separately because they told us whether it was a result of climate change and a result of the end times and we did see
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that six in ten americans say that it's a result of climate change. so we have most americans on that side. again, the significant minority here and the real question is how much does it matter in term of what government action wants to do and it turns out that it matters. the perception of the facts matters the most. so those who don't believe that storms are getting more severe, just the fact of that are twice as likely to say that the government should do more to address climate change but among those who say that it's a sign of the end times, they are evenly divided on whether or not the government should do something to address this compared to more than two-thirds of those who say it's not a sign of the end times. >> okay. evangelicals, there seems to be a split in the religious community because they say weather shifts are biblical while mainline protestants and catholics claim climate change. >> you can see this in the
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electoral results as well. white evangelicals stand out different than catholics as you can see in the data here as having the biblical world view that god is control of all of the events in the world and god is in control of the weather and they have theological significance for them in ways that they don't even for other religious americans. >> hmm. okay. so we were talking about the different between climate change and whether it's biblical but some people view climate change as biblical. are the two mutually exclusive? >> you know, they are not. this is also an interesting thing of the survey, is that we had about a fifth of evangelicals who will claim both, that the severity of storms is due to climate change and it's also due to being in the biblical end time. these are not mutually exclusive answers where they can say, maybe god is using the severity
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of times as a means to getting to the end of times. >> okay. robert jones with the public religion research institute. thank you very much. up next, a powerful statistic you may not know. >> i lost my dad and uncle to drug abuse. >> i lost my uncan kell and cousin after two years of prescription drug abuse. >> after family. >> i lost both my mother and my grandmother to oxycontin. >> prescription drug abuse leaving thousands of children without families. dr. sanjay gupta has the story, next. ♪ [ male announcer ] the way it moves. the way it cleans. everything about the oral-b power brush is simply revolutionary. oral-b power brushes oscillate, rotate and even pulsate to gently loosen and break up that sticky plaque with more brush movements than manual brushes and even up to 50% more than leading sonic technology brushes
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[ male announcer ] born from the elements. ♪ destined to take them over. the uconnect command center with sirius xm satellite radio in the new 2013 ram 1500. engineered to move heaven and earth. guts. glory. ram. you'll also care about our new offer. you get access to nurses who can help with your questions. and your loved one can get exelon patch free for 30 days. if the doctor feels it's right for them. it cannot change how the disease progresses. hospitalization and rarely death have been reported in patients who wore more than one patch at a time. the most common side effects of exelon patch
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are nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. the likelihood and severity of these side effects may increase as the dose increases. patients may experience loss of appetite or weight. patients who weigh less than 110 pounds may experience more side effects. people at risk for stomach ulcers who take certain other medicines should talk to their doctor because serious stomach problems such as bleeding may worsen. patients may experience slow heart rate. thirty days of exelon patch free for your loved one. access to trained nurses for you. call 1-855-999-1399 or visit good morning, everyone. i'm don lemon. stories we're watching right now in the newsroom, the u.s. is
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showing its support for turkey in the face of potential threats from syria. u.s. military will deploy two patriot missile batteries in the coming weeks and the missiles are to be used just for defense. >> the twinkie and other hostess brand treats could be back in your lunch bag. walmart and kroger are among the demand. hostess shut down after failing to resolve a contract dispute with their baker. house speaker and president obama met just under an hour yesterday. they both described it as frank with lines of communications staying open. more than 86,000 children in kentucky are living without their parent. that is according to the 2010 census. and the reason why may shock you. experts say it's because of prescription drug overdoses. every 19 minutes, someone dies that way here in the united
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states. and we're used to focusing on the person or who dies. but looking deeper, what you find are hidden, the victims. >> if this town could talk, it would describe a simple, idealic life. it would also whisper a sobering story, an epidemic that is tearing apart family -- >> i lost my dad and uncle to drug abuse. >> after family. >> i lost both my uncle and cousin after two years of prescription drug abuse. >> after family. >> i lost both my mother and my grandmother to oxycontin. >> it is not uncommon to hear stories like this echoing down the hallways every day at this high school in rock castle county, kentucky. >> constantly hearing about someone else dying because of someone abusing prescription
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drugs. >> avery bradshaw shows this story all too well. >> my grandpa sat me down and told me that he was gone. >> when avery was just 7, his father overdosed on oxycontin. he says his mother was in and out of his life. >> the hardest part of growing up without a dad would be not having that model family like that you always see. >> he's lucky enough to live with his great grand parent. in this town, that model family is being redefined. >> this is happening in rockcastle county every week but it's happening in eastern kentucky every day. it's leaving our communities in shreds and we're left behind to pick up the pieceses from that. >> karen kelly is the executive director of operation unite, a
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committee formed to help prevent overdoses in kentucky. kentucky is the fourth most medicated state in the united states and in one county alone -- >> half of the kids have no parent in the home whatsoever. so now we're seeing many raised by great grand parent because we've lost an entire generation of young people and, you know, the kids are really the ones paying the biggest price. >> it's stressful for kids and it's really an emotional thing. >> dr. sanjay gupta, cnn, reporting. >> you can see more reporting from dr. gupta this weekend. it airs saturday afternoon, 4:30 p.m. you just saw karen kelly talking about this problem. she joins me now live via skype. she is the director of the operation unite, a nonprofit focused on teaching people about the dangers of drug abuse.
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what is the biggest struggle in fighting drug abuse? >> well, we create more addicts every day because of this problem and it's something that we've talked to a lot of parent who have lost children but we tend to leave the children out of focus and it's something that is just heart-wrenching because what do you do with these kids? how can they go to school and focus on math or reading when they don't have parents at home? >> how is this different, a different battle compared to heroin, meth, or alcohol? >> well, because, as i mentioned, we create new addicts every day and many people get addicted through legitimate means, legitimate prescriptions because of a car accident or a back injury and then the next thing you know they are struggling to keep their lives in control. and it's just something -- legal drugs is our biggest problem in this country right now. >> give us a solution, if you
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have a family member -- we have to go on. we have breaking news. but just a solution as you leave us. >> if you have medications in your home, lock them up and make sure that you check into other options before your doctor want to prescribe you open piates. >> karen, thank you very much. but we have breaking news. thank you. >> thank you. this is cnn, breaking news. >> it is just coming across the wires here, from the connecticut state police, responding to reports of a shooting, we are told, at newton elementary school this morning. it's in the southwestern part of connecticut. that's according to a police spokesman, responding to reports of a shooting at newtown elementally school. there is a map right there. sandy hook. let me read more of what i'm getting here.
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according to one of our affiliates, the connecticut state police are responding to that shooting at newtown. excuse me. not newton. newtown. the shooting happened on dickinson. it's newtown. i said newton before but it's newtown. we don't know if there's any injuries but they are deploying units and cnn is sending crews and our affiliates are sending crews as well. they are en route to an elementary school in newtown. we are working our sources and our affiliates there in the area to try to figure out what is going on. as you know, law enforcement -- and we do here at cnn and all news organizations take it very seriously any time there are reports of a gun or shots fired at a school, elementary, junior high school, college, what have you. and that's what we are doing right now, checking on that for you. we're getting some information
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in. our producers are gathering it for us. we'll be back with the very latest on the other side of this break. don't go anywhere. [ female announcer ] born from the sweet monk fruit, something this delicious could only come from nature. new nectresse. the 100% natural no-calorie sweetener made from the goodness of fruit. new nectresse. sweetness naturally.
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the breaking news is coming to us out of connecticut, the southwestern part of that state where police are reporting that they are responding to reports of a shooting at newtown elementary school early this morning. again, in the southwestern part of the connecticut. that is according to a police spokesman lieutenant paul vance. the school is on dickinson drive and there are few other detail available. our affiliates are on the way to the scene as well as cnn crews,
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photographers, correspondents on the way to this. of course, we all cringe when we hear about reports of a shooting, especially at an elementary, especially any organization, a business or a school but when you look at elementary school children, so young, and reports of a shooting at a school, we have very few details on this. even the folks in connecticut are scrambling to try to get their bearings around this and get to the scene to figure out what is going on. again, this is newtown elementary school. the reports came in, approximately, 30 minutes ago. it's sandy hook elementary. is that correct? brian, my producer? sandy hook elementary in newtown. again, in the southwestern part of the state. very few details about sandy hook elementary, how big it is, how many students, what grades, if it is from first to nine or what have you.
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again, reports from our affiliates are telling us where it is and there are also other reports out there -- again, this is not cnn's reporting. this is other published reports that i'm looking on the wires, connecticut school district is on lockdown, people are reporting, following a shooting at an elementary report. they are saying it's an unconfirmed report but we have a confirmed report that they are responding to the shooting there. the district is taking preventive measures by putting all schools on lockdown until they ensure the safety of all students. again, that's according to another report that is quoting the newtown public school district of superintendent. the police department is sending units following a shooting at a that school and all private and public schools in town are on lockdown. they said there is a message. we can look for this if you guys are on the school's website. a message on the school district's website that all
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afternoon kindergarten is canceled and no midday bus runs. you are looking at the school's website there. up on the top right of your screen, you can see it in the yellow part, afternoon kindergarten is canceled today. there will be no midday bus runses. so i'm not sure if that is because of these reports of a shooting. but it is an indication that something is going on, that something is awry in this school district. again, sandy hook elementary school. you're looking at the school's website. reports of a shooting at that connecticut school which is located in the southwestern part of the state and we've confirmed that from police spokesman lieutenant paul vance. we have crews on the way to the scre scene. our affiliates have crews on the way to the scene as well. we have a reporter in new york who is following that for us and
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we'll get that reporter to you as well on the other side of this break. don't go away. breaking news here on cnn. employees are being forced to do more with less. and the need for capable leaders is greater than ever. when you see these problems do you take a step back, or do you want to dive right in? with a degree in business from capella university, you'll have the knowledge to go further in your career than you ever thought possible. let's get started at ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] everyone deserves the gift of all day pain relief. this season, discover aleve. all day pain relief with just two pills.
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the breaking news here on cnn is that connecticut state police have responded to reports of a shooting at sandy hook elementary school. it's in the newtown school district in the southwestern part of connecticut. first pictures coming in right now. let's put them up. you see the police tape in front and you see also emergency people in the background there. a fire truck on your left. fire and rescue. so it appears through these pictures -- another confirmation that something is going on at this elementary school in newtown. this picture, courtesy of our affiliate wcct. again, we have very few details about this shooting. it's just that there were reports for police to come out because of some sort of
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disturbance or shooting at the school. obviously police investigators, fire department all rushing out to the school and finding what they found and we don't have the information of what they have found yet. there are other reports published and otherwise that are saying that the school district is on lockdown. the school district is on lockdown right now. newtown police spokesman is telling cnn, our new york desk, that police at sandy hook elementary responded to that shooting and the kids are not being evacuated. the kids are not being evacuated from this school. so, again, we are getting new information now coming in. these are the first pictures coming in from the school. we don't know if there are any injuries. we don't know the details behind the shooting, what type of gun if at all, who the suspect was,
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if it was a student. again, when we get reports like this, we all cringe because it's the last thing you want to see happen at any business or home and especially at an elementary school when we know the ages of the people involved and we send our kids off to school every single day hoping that they will be in the best hands and then sadly, from time to time, these terrible situations do crop up. again, we are learning that this school is on lockdown. cnn has confirmed that they are not evacuating the students from the school. emergency personnel are there. others are still being rushed there. our affiliate are on the way to the school as well as cnn crews and personnel on the way as well. just to give you an idea, you've been seeing the map there. the only thing we know is that it is in the southwestern part of connecticut. and if you guys -- i'm in a bubble by myself. if you can show us how close we are to a major town or city, to give us an idea of where this
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school is and how many students are there. again, here's the latest from the wires. from the cnn wires. and they are saying connecticut state police and local authorities are responding to a shooting at the elementary school in southwestern connecticut. the school is sandy hook elementary school. it is on lockdown. they are not being evacuated. that's according to a newtown police spokesman. our wires are saying newton but it is newtown. it appears to not be very close to a city center because our affiliates are telling us that it's going to take them a couple minutes to get to the scene, 30 minutes. if it was close to a major city, it would not take that long to get out to this elementary school. as you know, the media is usually located in larger urban areas and business areas and this must be a smaller town in
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order for -- okay. we're trying to get someone on the phone now, lou, a former new york police officer. is lou on the phone now or are we still working to get him? say again? almost there. okay. as we work -- let me know in my ear when we get lou. so, again, those are the reports that we have and this comes to us as we were obviously in the middle of other news about what's going to happen with the fiscal cliff and what have you and then all of a sudden this disturbing news comes across the wires and we have to readjust to bring this to you. lou, i know you very well. you have kids. i've met your wife and your kids. we send our kids off to school every day. this is the worst thing, the worst news that we can get. >> i'm here, don. >> yeah. lou, talk to me about this swaying. i'm not sure if you're working your sources. but as i said, i'm not sure if
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you can hear me, you have kids, i've met your kids, i've met your wife. i know how much you love them. you send your kids off to school and then all of a sudden you get this news and this is the worst news that you can get. >> this is the greatest fear, don, you can possibly have. if you watch our culture, it seems like it's eroding away. you can't take kids to the movie theater or shoppingi at the mal. very interesting culture we have evolved into. >> do you know anything about this school district? >> i'm slightly familiar with it because at one time i did have a residence in connecticut, as you are probably aware. i think the school district is borderline academic. this is a grammar school. it's an elementary school. we're not talking about a high school where the children have evolved a bit more where if you stimulate them negatively as they did in columbine, you end
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up with this group that carry out these heinous acts of killing people. this is an elementary school. i'm very curious to know what this impetus was at the school. is it in between teachers, workplace violence? i'm interested to see what the dynamics is here. >> whatever it is, it's disturbing. it's an elementary school and when i was growing up, i don't know what the -- i'm reading here. i don't know how exactly they do it now, what the measures were, but mine was k-5 and then 5-8 or 9 was junior high school and then high school was beyond that. so when you think about those ages, those are kids anywhere from 4 to 5 years old to 12 or 13 years old. that's really young. >> that's the scary part, that they would be subjected to that in this environment of learning. you have to understand the ram if i kags of this and their ability to go into a learning
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environment, concentrate, feel secure. we're not even talking about the parents' state of mind. the thing i suspect, don, this had little or nothing to do with the children per se based on the demographic, the age there. it probably is something to do with the teachers or maybe there was an outside influence or issue introduced into tha school environment where a shooter, for example, may have gone in for a person they were looking for who just happened to be in that environment. this is always going to be the fruition of the investigation. right now what we're seeing, don, is the police are responding, they are creating a perimeter, they are -- how would you say -- exercising containment. which means they are going to prevent any outside -- further outside influence into the school. >> lou, hold that thought. hold that thought and i'll get to you on the other side of the break. stay with us for the breaking news here on cnn. americans believe they should be in charge of their own future.
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and the breaking news here on cnn, connecticut state police responding to reports of a shooting at sandy hook elementary school in the newtown school district in southwestern connecticut this morning. there are pictures from the scene. there you see on the right of your screen, you see the police tape and the emergency officials. our reporting is that police responded earlier to this shooting and that the elementary school is on lockdown right now. there are others that are reporting this is abc reporting, again, that is on lockdown and that's according to the secretary and they say state police are sending units to that area. all private and public schools are on lockdown. abc is reporting that. we're reporting that this one
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elementary school is on lockdown because of this but they are not evacuating any children out of this school. don't know the extent of any injuries and we don't know the details behind the shooting, who exactly did it and why. lou, law enforcement official familiar here at cnn, talk to me about this school district. you know it because you have a residence in connecticut? >> yeah. i'm familiar with it, don. there's nothing germain to the school district. we're talking about an he wi elementary school. it's not like we have the high school denominator that has bullying. >> lou, you're right about that and we're going to have to get other information on the other side of this break when we
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