tv CNN Newsroom With Pamela Brown CNN November 28, 2021 5:00pm-6:00pm PST
even with the variant that we don't know yet the full impact, get boosted. get vaccinated. >> tonight scientists racing to decode the variant. >> how transmissible is this? we don't know yet. how severe? we don't know the answer to that question either. >> concern and condemnation as more countries ban travel from south africa and neighboring nations. >> we are now in a race against time. >> these restrictions are completely unjustified. >> we didn't need to close off travel and unfortunately we're punishing south africa fordoing the right thing. >> the u. ss. with its own
restrictions tomorrow. >> we'll make sure there is no travel from south africa and six other countries. >> we were concerned if we could come back home. >> with lessons learned, scientists are rushing it evaluate the threat. >> you can take a covid test on site and they give you this little at-home test kit. that definitely feels different, when you come home and see all of that going on. i'm kaitlyn collins in washington. you're live at the "cnn newsroom." tonight countries around the world are scrambling to respond to a concerning new variant known as omicron. could it cause more severe disease or at least a dozen countries are detecting cases of omicron including those showing red on this map. canada just now confirming its first two cases. multiple countries including the united states are shutting their
doors to south africa and the neighbors in an attempt to contain the variant but preventing it from spreading entirely will likely be impossible. those suspicions have sparked anger where scientists first reported the variant and alerted the global community. medical experts say if omicron is not already in the united states, it probably will be soon. as they struggle to understand the many mutations and what it takes for the vaccines, there are some encouraging signs. >> do you have any indication that it's more lethal or that it makes people more ill? >> yeah, not right now. the three critical questions right now is first is this more virulent? is this making people more ill? there is some anecdotal information and this could be causing mild disease. >> former fda commissioner scott gottleib there. we have complete coverage from
johannesburg to the white house. we'll start with nick valencia. delta airlines is headquartered there. right now they are flying to south africa but the clock is ticking on those flights. >> yeah. and it appears so far this historically busy travel day, caitlyn, hasn't been impacted at all by news of the new strain of covid-19. we have been talking to passengers and we're joined by a family on their way back to new york, is that right? >> yes. >> you heard about the variant. did it impact your decision at all? how did it impact your decisions to go to new york? >> first of all, we're all fully vaccinated. we have been for a year. we feel quite comfortable taking all the necessary precautions we need to make, hand washing, wearing masks. >> maya, is there any reluctance knowing the flights continuing to go to south africa and the people who have talked to you, health experts say it could be here in the united states.
>> yeah, i'm good with that. yeah. >> reporter: are you taking any added precautions in do you think you'll do anything moving forward or what do you think? >> yeah, i think i'm just going to wear a mask a lot. >> yeah. >> and wash my hands, yeah. >> reporter: many of the passengers of the many passengers we've spoken to today, there was only one that was kind of hesitant in thinking what does this mean going forward. does this change anything for you? you're still going to get on your flight to new york today. >> yes. honestly, covid is always going to be there as we know. like it's just, you know, we have -- >> reporter: a part of life. >> it is a part of life. it will be a big change moving forward. >> reporter: for you guys it is business as usual as well for you just like delta airlines? >> yeah. we love to travel. we've never stopped traveling. we're going to continue to travel. i think it's just a new way of life. it's a new normal for all of us. >> reporter: thank you for
taking the time with cnn. they were so excited to get on. we had to get them on. caitlyn, the general attitude is they're ready to get back home. they have to travel. they know and are aware of this news and this really sort of frightening initial data that we're seeing. for a lot of people the pandemic is over. caitlyn? >> yeah. of course, scientists are still waiting to learn more about the new variant. we should note the new restrictions don't apply to citizens and they have to get negative tests to get back into the united states. i want to go to the white house. you got a briefing almost immediately upon landing about the latest on the developments whampt did president biden hear from his team, joe? >> reporter: caitlyn, they put out a status report or what we here at the white house call a readout. it was essentially very short and sort of giving a summary.
now the president flew back to the washington area where he spent the day with his family. went to a briefing with his covid response team including dr. anthony fauci who is seen front and center in a picture they released wearing a mask there. he was heavily attributed in the statement they put out. that statement says dr. fauci informed the president while it will take approximately two more weeks to definitive information on the transmissibility, severity and other characteristics of the variant, he continues to believe that existing vaccines are likely to provide a degree of protection against severe cases of covid. dr. fauci also reiterated that boosters for fully vaccinated individuals provide the strongest protection from covid. the president is expected to give an update on monday. monday, caitlyn, is the day when those travel restrictions from
several southern african countries including south africa and botswana will go into effect. the president was asked whether there will be any more travel restrictions and he didn't answer that. >> you can imagine we'll learn more about poosters. joe johns at the white house, nick valencia at the white house, thank you for joeng us. scientists first alerted us about four days ago. it has become a major concern about the world. david mckenzie have said, look, we did the right thing here. and now they feel like they're being punished to a degree with the new travel restrictions, not just from the united states but from several nations. >> well, several nations, caitlyn. in fact, it's an increasing number of nations that seem to be spanning across the globe that is cutting off south africa
and its neighboring countries. if you look at some of the most recent news, it pokes holes in the logic of the travel band outside of the fact that they shouldn't be instituted. you have two cases in canada which weren't coming from southern africa at all, they were travelers from nigeria. previously there was a traveller from egypt that tested positive in belgium. neither of those countries anywhere near southern africa. although sous african responsibilities, the cat's already out of the bag. frankly this variant is probably all over the place. more it's based on where it has been picked up by good surveillance than where it actually is. the south african president saying for the address to the nation, he was saying he was deeply disappointed to have
instituted these bans. >> these restrictions are unjustified and unfairly discriminate against our southern national countries. this is not informed by science nor will it be effective in preventing the spread of this variant. >> reporter: there will be several weeks before we know exactly or get information on what it could do. it will have damage on this region's economy. >> obviously there are far more questions than answers about the new omicron variant. i want to bring in dr. peter hotez.
you've been learning what we know at the moment though it's still not a lot. what is your take on what you've heard so far? >> yeah. i think first of all, caitlyn, this variant is likely already globalized. that's been the story in every time we pred just about every continent. now that we've unveiled it in europe, canada, almost certainly it's in the united states in australia. that's not surprising, that's pretty much the same playbook that every variant exercises. i think there's a lot we don't know. we're hearing conflicting stories. some saying it's causing mild illness, others saying there isn't were and that's part of their clinical presentation.
in terms of vaccine escape, this variant like if you remember the b. 13 p51 out of south africa lt year? it has similar mutations. if you get a high level there for you with some cross protections. they should have some level of protection. we don't know that for certain. our scientists over the weekend and this week at our texas children's center for vaccine development as well as almost certainly moderna, pfizer, j&j are looking at the antibody responses to each of our vaccines and see if they effecttismly neutralize of the omicron virus. i think we can know that pretty soon. it may not be eye couple of weeks. i think by the end of this week
we'll have some vaccine neutralizing antibody data. to know whether the vaccines are partially effective. i'm hoping for good news on that front. then the question is how transmissible is this? the alpha variant was out competed by the delta variant this summer across north america and now caused a severe wave. can omicron do this? it's a pretty high bar. delta variant is the highest we've seen so far and there's not enough data there to really say for certain what's going on. we know we've seen this big rise in omicron in one province in south africa, pretoria johannesburg is located. we don't know if that's going to translate to doing the same globally. a lot more clearly questions and answers at this point. the good news is the scientific
community is prepared. over the next week or two we'll have answers to these questions. >> do you think we're doing enough testing in the united states to find out if this variant is here, and if so, how widespread it is? >> unfortunately, caitlyn, we've under performed in terms of genomic testing so far. we're doing better than before but we're not quite at that level. no, i think it's quite possible that the omicron variant is here, we haven't picked it up yet. i think if we can pick up the pace of genomic sequencing, hopefully we'll identify it soon. >> the cdc says no confirmed cases but they are still trying to figure that out and examining more test samples. dr. peter hotez, thank you for joining us tonight. >> thank you. coming up in the "cnn newsroom." a moving moment to remember the waukesha christmas tragedy victims. also ahead, a blockbuster
trial. the case against ghislaine maxwell could reveal about jeffrey epstein's powerful circle. and this man is lucky to be alive after he flew from guatemala to miami while in the plane's landing gear. we'll be right back with more. ...so you feel cool, night after night. save up to $500 on select adjustable mattress sets during the tempur-pedic black friday event. the dove beauty bar makes my skin feel fresh. i've encouraged serena my best friend to switch. feels moisturized and clean. my friend stefanie, her skin was dry. i'm like girl you better get you some dove. she hooked me up. with a quarter moisturising cream, dove cleans effectively and cares beautifully. we're carvana, the company who invented car vending machines
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welcome to allstate. where everything just seems to go your way. ♪ ♪ you're in good hands with allstate. click or call for a lower auto rate today. it's been one week since the annual christmas parade in waukesha has been a tragedy. darryl brooks killed six and injured dozens leaving the city in shock. today one injured child was well enough to leave the hospital and go home. several others are still being treated and remain hospitalized. cnn's natasha chen has more on the aftermath. >> reporter: caitlyn, the city of waukesha held a moment of silence at 4:39 p.m. central time to mark the moment when an suv crashed into the town of
christmas parade. six people died and more than 60 people were injured. people went blue lights at that time. children's wisconsin says this evening they have seven remaining patients, three of whom are in serious condition. one of their patients is jesselyn torres who is on a ventilator, fractured skull, lacerations to her lungs, broken pelvis. the daughter had the vehicle's grill marks on her chest and was flung 20 to 30 feet. a rare joint statement was issued saturday. outside groups may attempt to exploit this for their own purposes. they said they have, quote, full confidence in the local officials and they should be afforded the respect they deserve to undertake their
responsibilities without outside interference. darryl e. brooks was involved in a domestic disturbance earlier and left the scene before driving his suv through the crowd. brooks was a registered sex offender in nevada and had an active arrest warrant in that state. he was released on bond after allegedly running over a woman who was the mother of his child. he's charged with five counts of intentional first degree homicide with an additional charge added to the sixth victim. a judge set his bail at $5 million saying he believes brooks is a flight risk. caitlyn? >> we'll be waiting to see if another charge is added to that. natasha chen, thank you very much. governor matthew mcconaughey? some say it has a nice ring. tonight he says that won't be his next role. i'll talk about his decision not to run for governor of texas next. ♪ ♪
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president biden just wrapped up a briefing with his covid team on the new omicron variant. his top advisers say they're still gathering more information but taking moves to contain the variant as much as possible out of an abundance of caution. there are still concerns that it could spell trouble for a president who wanted to put the virus in the rear-view mirror. joining us is alice stewart and paul bagala. paul, i want to start with you tonight on the new restrictions you're going to see go into place tomorrow. this is something that some have pointed out there were people in the biden administration who were critical when the last administration put travel
restrictions in place. do you think the calculus has changed now that they're in charge? >> oh, i think so and because this new variant could be so devastating. we don't know yet. i think it's really smart for the white house to move so quickly. the president has met with his team of medical and science advisers. he sent a bunch of them out this morning. we saw dr. francis collins out on "state of the union" and dr. fauci out this morning. you fight this with facts. right now we don't have a lot of facts. his poll numbers on covid are stronger than on immigration or the economy. politically i think this is in his wheelhouse. >> those are poll numbers that were tied to the success of his presidency, which is getting this under control, returning the country to normal and making
people feel better. you've seen some of the poll numbers drop to a degree versus what you've seen back in june. 64% in his confidence of handling. now it's closer to 48%. how does that factor into the moves the white house is making? >> it means they need to be very calculated in what they do and they need to communicate it. look, those numbers are bad but you also have to go back even further, caitlyn, when he was elected president. he had 70% approval in terms of how he was going to put covid in the rear-view mirror. now he's at less than 50%. the key is to follow the science. make sure they stay ahead of this and communicate to the american people what they're going to do. the big concern here is this new variant seems to be much more serious and significant and it's really important to have the meetings with the scientists and take preventive steps and get
ahead of this instead of letting this get ahead of the american people. more important than anything, we need to continue to encourage people to get the vaccine. booster if needed. get the booster. and when and where appropriate, get vaccinated. >> paul, you just noted that tomorrow president biden is going to be addressing the country, talking about what he heard from his team of advisers today. the facts are still in short supply. dr. fauci says it could be about two weeks before we know more definitively is this causing severe disease? can it evade vaccines? if you are advising the president, what tone should he take given we still don't know a lot of the facts about the variant? >> i think he has to level with the country and say that first. we don't have all of the facts. things will change. but here's what we need to be doing. allison is right, i saw all of those experts on tv this
morning. sometimes scientists are not the best messengers. this day i think they did a great job saying, get the booster. we're still giving over 1.3 million doses of vaccine under president biden which is good but not great. we're only 59% of americans vaccinated. we have to get higher. any opportunity he has to take the stage and remind the american people that the best way to protect yourself and your neighbors and those you love is to go get a booster. >> that's a message you will hear repeatedly over the next two weeks until we know more about this. alice, i want to completely switch subjects here and move on to a development we just heard from matthew mcconaughey who has been rumored to be considering a run for governor of texas. he had not said officially yet what his position was and what he was going to do, though he did announce it a few minutes
ago. >> as a simple kid being born in the yew valley of texas, it never occurred to me i would be considered for political leadership. it is humbling and it is a path i am choosing not to take at this moment. >> what do you think about that? >> all right, all right, all right. >> i was hoping there was going to be a mcconaughey quote. >> i was watching this through and seeing if he would run for office. and i was also encouraged to see what possibly paul bagala would do with regard to helping matthew mcconaughey. i think he raised important issues in the message that mcconaughey brought out, he talked about the political discourse and making sure we have elected officials that serve people for all the right reasons. i'm encouraged to see he's not completely ruling it out in the future. he realizes there is a need for this. he's also going to stay involved
and stay involved with people that want to make texas better and the nation better with regard to public service. that's encouraging. >> it will be an interesting race to watch. governor greg abbott is running for re-election. beto owe rush'rourke is running re-election. nancy mace is joining us from north carolina. she is weighing in on what happened this week while lawmakers were gone from washington. those were the comments from lauren boebert. ilhan omar, they said she could be a suicide bomber. are you surprised that's something we're not seeing more widespread in the republican party right now? >> i am. perhaps this is why matthew doesn't want to get into politics. in that sense i can't blame him. he's a creative genius and i love the guy.
that's how broken politics is. if people can't stand up and say, this is wrong, especially when it's in your own party. have you to police your own team first. when people are unl willing to do that. let me be specific, kevin mccarthy. i'm glad congresswoman may stood. the leader of that party, i use that very judiciously, but alleged leader is kevin mccarthy who has done nothing on this. he's refused to stand up to the extremists. to call him the republican leader, by the way, is like an oxymoron. it's like jumbo shrimp or adult male. two words don't go well together. the guy has got to step up and police this or more and more people are going to say, i don't want to have anything to do with politics generally or with republicans specifically if they can't get ahold of their fringe ele elements. >> they made the point across the aisle, republicans and
democrats across the board need to be more condemning of inciteful language and social media posts. >> you can bet kevin mccarthy will get questions when they're back this week about what the response is going to be? alice and paul, thank you both for joining us. >> welcome. >> roll tide. just as hanukkah starts, israel is putting into place sweeping new travel restrictions given this new variant that of course there are major concerns about worldwide. we have breaking news upon that and what's going on across the globe next. [microwave beeps] [ahh] ♪ ♪ ♪ i'm so defensive, i got bongos thumping in my chest ♪
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we have this news in just from asia. taiwan said china dispatched 25 war planes in the skies around it with five nuclear bombers. this comes after five lawmakers visited taiwan to meet with government officials there. china's been rachetting up the military action. this comes as dozens of nations are limiting travel from parts of southern africa where the new omicron variant was discovered. cnn's hadas gold has more from
jerusalem. >> reporter: there are knew at least seven suspected and one confirmed case of the new variant in israel. four of the suspected cases are people who recently traveled abroad health authorities say making it possible that the other three may have been local transmissions. in response to fears, possible dangers, the israeli government is taking drastic new measures which are some of the strictest of the world. the country is shutting the borders to foreigners for two weeks, this is not even a month after opening up from vaccinated tourists. they will be required to quarantine for three days and produce two negative pcr tests before they can be released. if they're unvaccinated they will need to quarantine for seven days with two negative tests before they can be released. israelis across from the
continent's northern countries will be sent to designated quarantine hotels. anyone with a suspected or confirmed case of the new variant will be trapped via cell phones. israeli authorities say they are not imposing new restrictions on gatherings as the country begins to celebrate hanukkah. then there's the miss universe pageant which is supposed to take place in two weeks. as of now they expect the competition to go on as planned. hadas gold, cnn, jerusalem. >> israeli prime minister says caution is going to be key. today starts the celebration of hanukkah. the second gentleman doug imhoff lit the second canned dal signifying the start of the holiday. the husband and vice president is the first jewish spouse of a president or vice president. a british socialite is
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tomorrow morning opening statements begin in what could be a blockbuster trial in ghislaine maxwell. maxwell is accused of sex trafficking an grooming minors as part of a sex ring that allegedly catered to epstein in a network of powerful men worldwide. epstein died in prison by suicide before he could go on trial in 2019.
on trial is maxwell. joining us is joey jackson to talk to us about the charges. enticing a minor to travel to engage in criminal sexual activity. conspiracy to commit both of those offenses, perjury and of course, joey, we know the defense is expected to argue she is being tried for someone else's crime. what do you expect to see from prosecutors starting tomorrow? >> yeah, caitlyn, good to be with you. the battle of the narratives. i think prosecutors will focus on the issues and things she allegedly did in really enabling mr. epstein with regard to his activities as it relates to minors. how will they do that? i think they'll use the victims that were allegedly violated when they were under the age of 18, one as young as 14, in demonstrating she was complicit and she was really an enabler
with respect to transporting these minors, in one instance to new york city, in another instance to london and another instance to santa fe, new mexico, and another instance to florida. so prosecutors will say by virtue of her approaching them, offering to pay for shopping, school, other enticements, she was able to bring them into the orbit of jeffrey epstein and participate with respect to the abuses that they were engaged in. i think for her part, caitlyn, she will argue she was very much manipulated by epstein herself and she had no knowledge or idea what was occurring, what his intentions are, et cetera. i think those narratives will be competing. an open question to me will be of course whether she will testify. i think in a case like this, she will. >> yeah. we know four of the women who say they were under age and preyed upon by maxwell will be testifying. what do you expect that to look like? it could be of course pretty
powerful. >> yeah, that's a great point. i think it will be powerful. i think as it relates to their testimony, i think it will be very strong and compelling. i think they will recall specifically what occurred when they met with her, right, miss maxwell. under what circumstances they met with her. what if any promises she made. how she induced them to travel. what activity she got them in and the defense's part in cross examining them. it was 20 years ago. memories will be tested. reliability will be at issue. credibility will be a major piece of this trial. to your point, i think when the victims testify and recall the abuses of the past and how she allowed this, not only allowed it but was an active participant, i think jurors will have a lot to think about there
will be an expert witness that will testify as to grooming, psychology, other things to educate the jury on how this could have occurred. >> long awaited trial. joey jackson, thanks so much for joining us. >> always. thanks, caitlyn. up next, a jaw-dropping story out of miami where police say a stowaway survived a more than two hour flight from guatemala clinging inside the plane's landing gear. video shows the 26-year-old man after he emerged from the wheel well. they gave him water until the paramedics and customs and border protection officers arrived on the scene. he has been taken to the hospital and it remains unclear how he got on the plane and remained undetected until they landed. back in the 1920s there was a horrific plan to steal money and land from the people. this is life with lisa leng.
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nearly lost forever. >> people were being killed left and right. it was terrible. >> they never knew who was going to be next. >> meghan sean tells me their grandparents feared for their lives and they even hired body guards. >> your family really felt that threat. >> oh, my grandmother used to have flash backs in the la late '80s. >> she would have nightmares. >> some say it was a blessing or a curse. >> lisaling ling joins me now. it's stunning to hear how their parents had traumatic flash backs of living in fear simply because they were living in wealthy and targeted because of that. >> they once control much of the midwest, missouri, arkansas and of course before they became the midwest and they control this
land over a millennial. they ended up settled in oklahoma. they negotiated for the surface and the sub signurface of that land. they discovered they were sitting on the top richest soils on earth, that ultimately led them to become targets for exploitation and even murder. it's estimated there were hundreds of osage murders during that period. it became known as the reign of terror and any of those murders were brought to justice, there were few that did eventually led to the birth of the federal bureau of investigation or fbi. >> and how do their descendents struggled with that, there was not justice for these murders.
>> it's surreal when you talk to these murders. some are discovering that what they thought their relatives died of was not the case. they may have been murdered boar -- it's incredible something that happens so long ago is so raw for so many osage people. >> has it affected their ailment to carry on with what's important to so many of them and language and legacy of their ancestors. >> in the 1900s, so many of their ancestors were forced to go to boarding schools. they could not wear their traditional dress, they were forced to learn english and forbidden for speaking their language. most of osage have grown up not knowing how to speak their language. there is an amazing effort underway to teach the kids how to speak the osage language and quite honestly they're only les than a handful of people that
can still peek that language. it's so important they are doing it now. >> it's really amazing when we think back. >> you also have a second episode that's just as important looking into this sexual assault in the military. what did you learn and what should people expect from this episode tonight? >>. >> well, this is our final night of season 8 of "this is life," all season we have been looking at moments of american history that did not make it into the history books but continue to impact us today. the second episode that's airing ace about the scandal in 1991 that rocked the united states navy. we looked into how hithings hav progresses because so many promises of zero tolerance. sadly we have not come too far with regards to sexual assaults in the military. >> too many women in the military are fully aware of that. lisa ling, these both are
excellent episodes. thank you so much for joining us. >> thank you. >> don't miss lisa ling's "this is life" only on cnn. vigil abloh has died. he was the artistic director of men's wear in louis vuiton. he was the first artistic director. for those of you who are not familiar with french personnel, he's the designer of serena williams' open look in 2019. he was also the designer behind hailey bieber's wedding dress as well. he was only 41 years old. our hearts go out to his family and friends. thank you for joining me. y cnn's special report hosted by