tv Early Today NBC December 23, 2011 4:00am-4:30am PST
this morning on "early today" -- giving in. house speaker john boehner and days of gridlock over the payroll tax cut. head over heels. traffic cameras capture a horrific collision in china. what a view. a nasa orbiter delivers stunning new images from saturn. captions paid for by nbc-universal television hello and good morning. i'm lynn berry. welcome to our viewers across the nation, including in the pacific time zone. today we begin with the house. after days of stubbornly
refusing to back down, house speaker john boehner gave in to growing demands from the white house and his own party to approve a two-month extension for expiring payroll tax cuts. after two quick procedural votes this morning, lawmakers can go home for the year, that's if all goes as planned. brian mooar joins us from washington with the details. good morning. >> reporter: wouldn't you know it? the drama has one last cliff hanger. if even one lawmaker objects, the vote would have to be pushed into next week. house republicans have surrendered in the fight over extending the payroll tax cut. >> we were here fighting for the right things. may not have been the politically the smartest thing in the world, but i'm going to tell you what, i think our members waged a good fight. >> reporter: facing immense pressure from the 160 million americans that face a january 1st tax increase and from members of their own party with a costly backlash, republicans
decided to go along with the two-month extension passed by the senate. but a key provision, language that protects small businesses from nightmarish reporting requirements allows gop lawmakers to walk away with an important consolation prize. it's a holiday gift for taxpayers and an election year present for president obama. >> this is it. this is exactly why people get so frustrated with washington. >> reporter: surrounded by people who would pay if the tax cut didn't pass, the president turned up the heat. now he's tweeting that the victory isn't his. he says it's yours. now, if one lawmaker does object, which is much more likely in the house it would cost $4 million to bring everyone back for a formal vote. lynn? >> brian mooar for us in washington, thank you. well, republican presidential hopeful mitt romney
has received what could be an important boost of support from the nation's 41st president, george h.w. bush. the former president told the newspaper he believes romney is the best candidate for the white house calling him, quote, mature and reasonable, not a bomb-thrower. bush, a texas resident, told the paper while he likes rival candidate and texas governor rick perry, he says he's, quote, not surging forward. while bush's comments were not a formal endorsement, they still give an important boost to the romney campaign less than two weeks before the iowa caucuses. overseas, reports from state-controll eled syria tv sa there have been activists have struck with a car bomb and a number of civilians have been killed. the this is the first attack since the start of new president
bashar alas aheal-asaad. monitors want to assess whether the government is complying with the peace initiative. a look at other stories making news early today in america. police have tracked down a group of vandals all thanks to youtube. the video posted by the culprit show the crew of young criminals ransacking several stores. investigators brought in one teen for questioning who eventually identified the rest of the suspects. southern california's notorious high-speed santa ana wind swept through yesterday, hammering several neighborhoods. wind gusts as high as 72 miles per hour were strong enough to rip trees from the ground and leave tractor trailers overturned. wind warnings and advisories are expected to end today. powerful winds fanned the flames of a san francisco inferno.
five-alarm blaze ripped through two residential buildings, forcing half of the city's on duty firefighters to suit up. two firefighters were hospitalized and 60 people were left homeless. >> finally, the first day of winter didn't feel anything like it normally does in coastal georgia. instead of bundling up, it was a day of fun in the sun. 80-degree weather gave locals at least one more chance to hit the beach. before old man winter puts a freeze on their weather conditions. now a look at your forecast with meteorologist bill karins are. >> it's been wild. 80 degrees there. my wife was bitten by a mosquito if? our backyard yesterday three days before christmas. in new york. the west has been chilly, east ridiculously warm. the weather pattern so far this
winter. don't tell new mexico they haven't had a winter. one of the highest snowfall totals they have ever seen. we haven't had a lot of snow in the mountains of california. even our friends in the cascades had a couple early storms. lately, not much snow at all. how are we looking out there today? still seeing snow in new mexico. all the way down in areas of new mexico itself. this will drift into west texas. areas that don't typically see a white christmas will get one. a lot of heavy snow from albuquerque to taos. the mountains covered at this time. the forecast, slight chance of showers, puget sound is dry. mid to upper 40s. warm area in l.a. 75 and sunny. vegas, cool, and 54. for anyone doing traveling away from the west coast. middle of the country. no issues at all. big airports like dallas, hubs, st. louis, and chicago. shouldn't see any delays. anyone going to the big cities in the east, a big rainstorm in
new england. anyone flying there will have no problems by the time you get there. a great travel day heading to extra careful. san jose nice today. and areas around crescent city, not bad either. unfortunately, some rain heading in for christmas day. i'll tell you who, a little later. also coming up, more job improvement. best buy says bah humbug, and what you won't find overhead this christmas. early morning business headlines straight ahead. plus, he's back and expected to blow up his competition this weekend at the box office. a dramatic finish between the colts and texas and another bowl, another win for boise state. you're watching "early today."
good morning and welcome back to "early today." i'm lynn berry and here are some of your top headlines this morning. a magnitude 5.8 earthquake shook the new zealand city of christchurch followed by several strong aftershocks. there were no reports of serious injury or major damage. this comes just ten months after a devastating 6.3 quake there that left 182 people dead. the entire police force of the mexican city of vera cruz has been fired as part of the country's ongoing effort to end police corruption and drug trafficking. for now, the mexican navy has been brought in to patrol the port city. and the earthquake-damaged washington monument has extensive cracking and chipped stones near its peak that had left it vulnerable to rainfall. that's according to a national park service report that says inspectors found cracks and loose stones along the entire length of the structure. so far, $7.5 million have been
allocated for repairs. an eastern china surveillance video captured this brutal head-on collision between a motorcycle and a car that sent two bikes and a rider flying. both were hospitalized with major injuries. and nasa's orbiter has beamed back breathtaking new images of saturn's largest and most colorful moon, titan, surrounded by a smaller moon and sa saturn's ring. titan is the only known moon in the solar system with a fully developed atmosphere. beautiful way to start your day. now here's an early look at how wall street will kick off the day. the dow opens at 12,169 after gaining 61 points. the s&p was up 10 points. the nasdaq added 21. taking a look at overseas trading this morning, in tokyo, the nikkei fell 64 points, but in hong kong, the hang seng jumped 250. wall street rallied thursday
on weekly jobless claims dropping to a 3 1/2 year low. for the third straight week, applications for unemployment benefits dropped, bolstering views the economy is gaining momentum. with just over a week of trade left in the year, thursday's gains left the s&p 500 less than a percent below where it started in 2011. the dow is up over 5% for the year, but the nasdaq is still off 2%. december's consumer sentiments hit a six-month high. confident investors brushed off a downward revision on economic growth, concentrating instead on unmistakenable signs of improvement this quarter. banks, energy and techs were the biggest gainers. bank of america led the dow, morgan stanley led all bank stocks. akamai technologies led tech, zooming on plans to purchase a competitor, tip co surged. american greetings tumbled on a
profit dive and higher expenses for 2012. bed bath and beyond slid after warning earnings might miss. mead johnson fell hard on johnson pulling infant formula nationwide. just days before christmas, best buy is playing the grinch. alerting some customers it won't fill their online orders. best buy won't specify how many orders or which products are out of stock. finally, bad news for christmas kissers. mistletoe is almost impossible to find this year because of a texas drought and bad weather elsewhere. it's so scarce, you may even have trouble finding fake mistletoe but i'm confident you'll have no problems still having your christmas kiss. well, the indianapolis colts come up big and last-second heroics on the ice. boise state lets it rip right from the opening kickoff. your early morning sports headlines are straight ahead. we're not looking at too
colts have picked up two wins. here's nbc's mario solis with an early look at all your sports headline. >> hi there, good morning. break up the colts after losing the first 13 games of the season. indy won second straight in dramatic fashion, taking on the texans, it took the colts 59 minutes to find the end zone and they couldn't have picked a better time to do it. down four, reggie wayne hit with 19 seconds left in the game. indy shots houston with a 19-16 win. college football, boise state hits the jackpot on the opening kickoff of the las vegas bowl. doug martyn takes the ball up the goalline and goes up untouched. broncos up 7-0 on arizona state. second quarter when broncos pull out their wild card, a reverse to matt miller and he tosses it to kyle. boise state wins big in vegas, 56-24. matt barkley will return to usc for his senior year,
bypassing the nfl draft to take a run at the national title. next season is the first year that the trojans will be eligible for a bcs bowl game after two years of sanctions. giants and jets will play tomorrow but last night it was the islanders and the rangers with new york bragging rights on the line. brandon dubinsky, coast to coast for the goal. rangers up 1-0. don't blink or you'll miss the next goal. off the face-off, gaborik scores on the door step. islanders a step behind all night. rangers win 4-2. toronto, sabres and maple leafs tied 2-2 late in the third. kadry proved he belongs, unleashing a cannon. leafs with a 3-2 win. predators rally from three goals down against the blue jackets. erat completes the comeback with 8.4 seconds left in the game. nashville scores four unanswered and wins this one 6-5. that's your look at sports on "early today." i'm mario solis. well, which film has raked in millions overseas but isn't
in case have you traveling or loved ones that are wondering what they are dealing with for the holidays. breezy for california. nothing like yesterday. light snow in new mexico. a few showers up in the coastal areas of the northwest. even on saturday, the only really storm on the map is going to be here in texas. west texas, could see the possibility of a white christmas. even the dallas-ft. worth area may see a flake or two not a lot of snow. but as we go into sunday. a front will come on shore. rain for areas of the northwest. coastal areas, a tiny bit of snow in the tiny elevations. watching news channel 8 in portland, oregon. celebrate with the largest christmas choral festival in the world and much more at festival of lights at the grotto. pacific event of the day. >> all right, bill, thanks so much. now here's an early look at this morning's headlines in entertainment. this holiday weekend big films should help boost what lately has been a sickly box office. "mission impossible" fourth film in the popular tom cruise franchise already made $18
million in a five-day imax run and opened wednesday with 9 million bucks and expected to finish the weekend number one with as much as $30 million. the girl with the dragon tattoo, much awaited adaptation of the first novel of the swedish mystery series opened with $5 million wednesday. rated "r." it will make back the studio's $90 million investment over the long haul but this weekend it will finish second with only about $15 million. steven spielberg's cartoon hero tribute "the adventures of tintin" already made $239 million overseas but expectations are much lower, should finish fifth with under $10 million. finally, the unanimated, noncomputer generated option "we bought a zoo" won't crack the top five and won't even pass $9 million. what are you thinking?
when you got that script, matt dam damon? >> maybe he thought we will just play with some animals. >> he doesn't have to get dressed up. he was confused. this comes to us from ksl 5 news in salt lake city, utah, where an army of postal service elves go the extra mile to make sure holiday mail arrives in time, regardless of penmanship. holly spends hours figuring out where mail with unreadable addresses needs to be sent. >> that's where my letter from you is. she and her coworkers use a decoding system to decipher bad handwriting that keeps mail from making it to its destination. each day they save thousands of mysteries on holiday packages with hopes of getting them to the intended loved ones. doesn't sound like a fun job.er first stop of the day.
this year's christmas dinner will be a bit sweeter in china. gusts to the first ever the chocolate feast will dine on a chocolate turkey and other delectable things. there is a five-layer chocolate fountain. chefs took over a month to prepare for the feast. in colombia, when you mess with the bull, you get the horns. an amateur bullfighting festival began yesterday. though customary, some locals feel it's too hazardous citing the bull can weigh up to 1,000 pounds and the amateur fighters
are not always sober when they participate. dangerous as they are, killing the bull is for bidden. finally in england, police are turning a close call into a lesson. a surveillance video was released of a woman drunkenly stumbling off a train and falling in between the train and the platform. taking place earlier this year, the woman was quickly rescued by other passengers and escaped without any injuries. but officials are hoping this footage will encourage responsible drinking. it's not as much responsible when you are drunk, it's don't get so drunk that you fall off a train. that's probably the biggest lesson there. >> you need a designated conductor. >> yes, or passengers. >> yes. >> it's just crazy. >> we won't be doing anything like that, will we now? >> of course not, bill. i don't know what you're talking about. time for an early look at stories we'll follow throughout the day on nbc. a russian soyuz spacecraft is scheduled to dock with the international space station this morning. if you are hitting the road this weekend, there's a good chance you'll be stuck in holiday
traffic at some point between now and new year's. according to aaa, nearly 92 million americans will be on the road, catching a plane or taking public transportation during the holidays. 1.4% jump over last year. on this day before christmas eve, in 1823, the classic story "twas the night before christmas" was first published as a children's poem. you can stay on top of the very latest as they break on msnbc. tonight be sure to watch brian williams with "nbc nightly news." finally, here's a look at what's coming up later this morning on the "today" show. in a "today" exclusive, the mother of missing toddler ayla reynolds speaks out about her daughter's disappearance from their home in maine. and the cast from the hit broadway show "jersey boys" stops by to perform some holiday tunes. now keep it on this channel for continuing local news, weather, sports and more. i'm lynn berry. thanks for watching "early today," just your first stop of the day today on your nbc station.
have a wonderful holiday. i love teaming with the best that's why i'm here, at st. jude children's research hospital. our research has changed the way the world treats brain tumors, leukemia and sickle cell. we help kids all across america. now, these kids have hope... and a sense of humor. where did you get this color? it's natural. give thanks for the healthy kids in your life and give to those who are not. go to st. jude.org or shop wherever you see our magnifying glass.