tv Craig Melvin Reports MSNBC November 30, 2021 8:00am-9:00am PST
be sure to follow the show online at jd balart msnbc. craig melvin picks up with more news next. good tuesday morning to you. craig melvin here live from msnbc headquarters in new york city. this hour we are laser focused on the global effort to contain the new omicron variant. right now the cdc stepping up its booster guidance. forget the idea that you can get a booster. experts there are now saying you should get a booster. in just a few moments we're going to hear from dr. anthony fauci about those boosters. why he says even though they were created before this new variant even existed, they still offer you some protection here. critical information from one of our nation's top doctors in just moments. also this hour, we're
watching the white house. president biden set to speak. also set to sign three bills into law aimed at helping veterans. later this hour he will head out of to minnesota to continue his infrastructure sales pitch. we'll go live to the white house. also happening right now, jury selection getting underway in the trial of a former minnesota police officer who is shown on body cam video shooting and killing a 20-year-old named dante wright. her former chief said he thinks she meant to grab her taser instead of her gun. we start with the latest on the omicron variant. nbc's richard engel is also with me in london. new york city mayor bill de blasio just reinstated this mask advisory on the new variant. what are you hearing.
>> reporter: the city is preparing. on friday the governor of new york declared a state of emergency, signing an executive order that will go into effect this friday limiting nonemergency, nonurgent medical procedures to help with hospital staffing as well as supplies. this is all in preparation, because no omicron variant has been confirmed in the u.s. but the governor says it's coming. the new york city health commissioner says it's probably just a matter of days before we have the first confirmed cases of the omicron variant here in new york city. also mayor bill de blasio announcing that mask advisory yesterday. people already have to wear them on public transit, in schools. this is encouraging people to do so at the grocery stores, doing holiday shopping. i talked to a new york city pediatrician this morning about how should people be receiving this news. she says we're in a wait and see
approach. of course, you know there are a lot of international visitors that come to new york. a lot of people are going to be seeing the nutcracker here in the next month, gathering with people. she says it might be too soon to cancel plans but everything is very personal. you have to study your own personal risk. >> we have a new variant. looks like it's going to be highly transmissible. so it's those little episodes where you take your mask off, walk into a grocery store and maybe forget to put it back on. maybe this is the time to make sure you're wearing it. definitely when you travel it's very, very important to wear it. >> reporter: she says it's important if you do see family to make sure everybody is fully vaccinated including that booster. health officials are encouraging everybody if you haven't gotten vaccinated to get one, if you
haven't gotten a booster to get one. 77% of people in new york city of all ages have gotten at least one shot. statewide, 90% of new york adults have gotten at least one shot, craig. >> we're still learning about the omicron variant, what it's going to mean in the weeks and months ahead. we do know that doctors in south africa discovered the variant. you actually talked to some of the doctors, as i understand it. what did they say? >> reporter: we are not exactly sure if it started in south africa or a neighboring country, but they were the ones who sounded the alarm. the reason is they were looking for it. they are very good geneticists, in part because they spent so long dealing with the aids and hiv epidemic. they're still dealing with that
pandemic. that gave them the experience to know how to look at viruses, now how to break down the genetic sequencing. one of the pioneers in this field is dr. richard lessles. he helped discover the beta variant almost a year ago. i was on the phone with him yesterday back doing these zoom interviews and we were talking about this new variant. they have mostly anecdotal evidence about the symptoms. some of the symptoms appear to be a little different. some doctors and nurses are describing they're not seeing loss of taste and smell. they're generally seeing younger people infected. some of the symptoms are described as milder, more flu-like. but he also emphasized they don't have enough cases yet identified to know if that is scientific or it's just anecdotal. it is representative of the pool that they have or if that is
characteristic of this new variant in general. he told me what triggered them, what made them start looking for this new variant is they started seeing a rise in cases where they didn't expect it. in one area in particular around johannesburg they thought they had a great deal of protection in this area from the virus because people had either been vaccinated or had previously had covid. and suddenly in this one area he said they saw cases rise just over the last several weeks. >> this is all happening very recently. three weeks ago, the case numbers were around 100. now they're 2,000, 3,000. we've seen this very rapid rise. >> reporter: and that jump
between 100 to now over 3,000 is what made them so concerned, because this was an area where people should have already had protection and it made them believe that something is wrong here, somehow this variant is able to evade either the vaccines or evade our antibodies. he also stressed and i believe dr. fauci is about to tell you this, that vaccines do help because he thinks they provide enough protection to keep people from getting very sick, keep people from getting into the hospital. i'll let you continue that conversation with dr. fauci. >> lindsey riser and our richard engel for us on this tuesday. thank you. i want to turn now to dr. anthony fauci. he is, of course, the director of the national institute of allergy and infectious diseases, also the chief medical advisor to president biden. dr. fauci, you stood next to the president on monday.
as you said the omicron variant is cause for concern, not cause for panic. why not? >> well, because we don't have enough information to be talking about dire situations. there are some concerning aspects about what the molecular profile of the virus is and what's going on in southern africa, but we really need to have filling in the gaps, for example, how transmissible will it be and what is the level of transmissibility. importantly, will it evade the protection, for example, of monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma or the antibodies induced by vaccination. it likely will have an impact on that. if you look at the profile of the mutations, the question is how much of an impact would it have on protection induced by vaccination. the only way to know that is to do what we're doing, namely, get
the virus and put it in a form where you can find out the degree to which the antibodies neutralize or immobilize these viruses. that's going to take a little time. likely we'll be getting some information probably within the next week or two and then further information a little bit later than that. there's a lot of things we don't know. also, we don't know anything about the severity of this infection. we know it's spreading pretty robustly in south africa where they have the capability of monitoring it well, but we don't know at this point, though we're getting some inkling as to whether it's severe or not. it could be highly transmissible but not severe, or it could be any combination. it's not jumping to conclusions
and following the science. >> how will we know when the variant is detected here in the united states? how will it be announced? >> the cdc does surveillance on isolates throughout the country. this is one, fortunately, that the test that we use, it's pretty easy to pick it up. given the surveillance system that the cdc has going right now, we should pick it up when it comes here. it might already be here, certainly not in large amounts but it may already be here. you're going to hear about it. the cdc will make the announcement as soon as they get the information. they will be very transparent about it. >> the white house said this weekend that you told the president it's probably going to take two weeks to really know how severe, how transmissible the omicron variant is. we just heard that new york city is asking people to wear masks inside. the cdc said people should get a
booster shot, upgrading the guidance from can get a booster shot. if we don't know what it is yet, how do we fight it? what's the best tool that we have? >> we know from experience when you have variants like the delta variant which is the variant that's dominated the situation throughout the world and certainly in the united states, even though the vaccines that we are giving to people are directed against the original wuhan strain, if you get the level of antibodies high enough, it cross protects against variants like delta. so what we're trying to do when we say, a, if you're unvaccinated, get vaccinated. b, if you are vaccinated, get boosted. we want to get the level of those antibodies as high as you possibly can. even though they may get some diminution in their effect on this new virus, you still almost certainly are going to get some degree of protection,
particularly against severe disease. we don't know what the level of that protection would be. but if history tells us anything regarding other variants, we will at least get some protection. that's the reason the president said yesterday go get vaccinated and if you are vaccinated, go get boosted. when we find out the degree of protection by the antibodies induced by vaccination, we can prognosticate but we're not going to know that for a while, for two weeks. >> do folks need to change their holiday plans because of this? >> i would not change any plans, but that doesn't mean you should be cavalier about it. people should try and get vaccinated if they're not vaccinated and get a booster as soon as you can if you're
eligible within the time frame of getting the boost. when you do travel, be prudent. when you're on a plane, you have to wear a mask. make sure when you're in the airport in a crowded place, the food courts or whatever in the airport, keep your mask on when you're in an indoor congregate setting. >> regardless of vaccination status? >> yeah. i mean, if you're vaccinated and you are in an indoor setting and you do not know what the vaccine status of the other individuals in a crowd in an airport, absolutely wear a mask. >> a number of countries at last check, roughly 20 including hours have put in place travel restrictions. i'm trying to understand what the goal of those restrictions is. if the idea is to stop it from getting here in the first place, seems like that may be too late. and if the goal is to keep it from spreading wildly, is that
premature? >> no. the situation is you really want to buy time. you're not going to absolutely, no way you're going to prevent it from ultimately coming to this country. but what you can do is lessen the people who might be infected from coming in. that might buy you a couple of weeks from being able to prepare better if and when you do have a situation which is much more when than if. it gives you time to get people to get vaccinated and those who are vaccinated to get boosted. >> your degree of confidence that the current vaccines and boosters that exist on market right now, they are strong enough to hold back this variant, to protect folks from this variant? >> no. you're putting words in my mouth, craig, that i did not
say. >> i was asking what is your degree of confidence. >> okay. you started off with the affirmative. sorry. >> my apologyapology. >> it's okay. it is unclear, but from historical experience that we have, is that when you get levels of antibody high enough with the booster, we have had protection against other variants. so what i'm saying, it is likely even if that protection is diminished, if you get your levels high enough particularly with a booster, you will get some degree of protection. maybe a lot, we don't know, but at least some degree of protection particularly against severe disease. that's what we know right now. if things change, we will absolutely tell you about it. >> dr. anthony fauci, thank you, sir for your time and your insight. appreciate you. >> good to be with you, craig. thank you for having me. coming up, in minnesota jury
selection has just started in the trial of kim potter, the former police officer who shot and killed dante wright during a traffic stop in april. also the biden administration has launched a new investigation into what's caused all of the shortages in stores. what they're looking into and why it's made everything from christmas shopping to getting school lunches served a whole lot harder. lunches served a wh lot harder once upon a time, at the magical everly estate, landscaper larry and his trusty crew... were delayed when the new kid totaled his truck. timber... fortunately, they were covered by progressive, so it was a happy ending... for almost everyone. new vicks vapostick. strong soothing vapors... help comfort your loved ones. for chest, neck, and back. it goes on clear. no mess just soothing comfort. try new vicks vapostick. no one can deliver your mom's homemade short ribs. that's why instacart helps deliver the ingredients.
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new this morning, we just learned four officers charged in the death of george floyd will be tried on federal charges together. a federal judge just denied a request by three of the former minneapolis police officers to be tried independently from derek chauvin. they face federal charges of violaing floyd's civil rights. meanwhile also in minnesota, jury selection getting underway in the trial of a former minnesota police officer charged in the shooting death of 20-year-old dante wright, yet another case that captured nationwide attention and sparked protests. in fact, this is a live look inside the courtroom here as jury selection continues this morning. back in april, brooklyn center police officer kim potter was
recorded on camera fatally shooting wright during a traffic stop. potter claims she mistakenly pulled out her gun instead of her taser. she's facing two felony counts of first and second degree manslaughter. police say they were attempting to take wright into custody after pulling him over for expired tags. i understand that one juror has been selected so far. what can you tell us about him or her? >> reporter: that's exactly right. this happened in just the past couple of minutes. the first juror was seated. we don't know the identity of these jurors, but he sounds to be an older man. he's a writer, a medical writer. we do learn a little bit about them because each juror requesting questioned today had to submit a 15-page questionnaire in which they answered questions about their personal views. one of the question was his
opinion about blue lives matter. according to the judge, while reading the document, he said he had a, quote, very unfavorable view towards blue lives matter, saying it was less in support of police, rather it was a counter cry against black lives matter. he said he can put his personal feelings aside and that led him to being passed by both the defense and the prosecution. this is a shooting that happened as we were covering the derek chauvin trial, the trial of the officer who murdered george floyd. it sparked protest and outcry. we heard from the family of dante wright just yesterday. this explanation you hear from kim potter is that she made a mistake, that she was reaching for her taser and instead grabbed her handgun. they said if they made a mistake
and there was a conviction of another officer in 2019 for the same reason, kim potter should be convicted for the same reason. >> are we prepared to hold a white officer accountable for killing a young black man when she says it was an accident, which obviously we dispute. the attorney general's office has done an excellent job of laying out why this was not some mere accident. >> this questioning is expected to take up to a week. opening statements are scheduled to begin december 8th. according to court documents, the judge has prepared the jury and have told them to expect to be participating in this trial for around two weeks. we know they'll be partially sequestered during the trial and fully sequestered once they begin deliberations.
also this morning, we're following what's set to be a very busy day for president biden. we are waiting for the president to sign three new bills related to helping veterans and their families. and within the hour the president is set to leave the white house and fly to minnesota to promote his newly-signed infrastructure law. shannon pettypiece joins me from the white house. tell us what you can expect from the president's trip to the upper midwest this afternoon. >> reporter: it's part of this ongoing effort by the white house to try and get some public support and some credit, frankly, for the president from this big infrastructure bill that got passed, which so far is really one of the primary pieces of legislation the president has been able to get through. there's a lot of veterans of the obama administration in this white house. one of the big things a lot of folks say from the obama administration was not getting
enough credit for the passage of obamacare. we see the white house getting the president out there now to show some specific examples of how this law is going to benefit people in specific communities. today he'll be in minnesota at a technical school and make the case that students being trained there will have jobs coming out because of this infrastructure bill and those will be high paying union jobs, is one message we expect to hear from the president. you mentioned the signing of this veteran's bill today, the supply chain issue and of course this new covid variant which seem to be overshadowing everything as we await more insight. >> we just saw president biden take to the podium there flanked by the vice president. we are going to keep an eye and ear on the president's comments
and bring you any news as warranted. shannon, thank you. package delays, higher prices at the grocery store, now even schools scrambling to get enough food and utensils for school lunches. i'll talk to a montana lunch lady about how the supply chain crisis is even complicating life for children dmou. y chain crisis is even complicating life for children dmou. en you switche and bring your own device, we'll pay off your phone up to $1000. you can keep your phone. keep your number. and get your employees connected on the largest and fastest 5g network. plus, we give you $200 in facebook ads on us! so you can reach more customers, create more opportunities, and finish this year strong. visit your local t-mobile store today. ♪upbeat music♪
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warned about the holiday season coinciding with the high prices and empty shelves we're seeing nationwide. now as the season ramps up, the federal government is stepping in to investigate. the federal trade commission is asking major retailers, including amazon and walmart, to turn over internal documents to try and get to the root cause of the mass shortages. nbc's business and tech correspondent jo ling kent has more. >> reporter: we have brand new numbers on cyber monday and online shopping. cyber monday actually coming in lower than last year, but still the biggest day of the year. this comes as the federal trade commission is now looking into how prices are being affected with this supply chain bottleneck. this morning cyber monday sales on track to meet expectations with shoppers spending up to an estimated $11 billion, similar to last year. this after a low turnout on black friday spurred on by supply shortages and fewer
discounts. now the federal trade commission is ordering major retailers and grocery chains to turn over new information on their supply chain problems, requesting internal documents from amazon, walmart, kroger, tyson and others to investigate the, quote, causes of empty shelves and sky high prices. on monday president biden met with ceos to discuss the crisis. the administration's plan to declog the ports of los angeles and long beach now seeming to pay off. since increasing hours and threatening fines for slow to move containers, port officials report that cargo buildup has been reduced by 33%. major retailers like amazon have their own planes. that one is headed for san francisco. in north texas at amazon's busiest air hub, over half a million packages are processed every day. workers sorting alongside robots that zoom across the warehouse.
while amazon says it's boosted inventory by 20% to meet demand, analysts say out of stock warnings are surging at many retailers nationwide especially for baby products, toys and home goods. gift cards sales are up 400%. experts say have items sent on the store instead of your home and if you're shipping gifts yourself, do it by december 15th. major carriers say that's the ground shipping deadline to ensure your presents arrive by christmas day. the biden administration is saying that meeting with ceos of retailers reveal that shelves will be well stocked this holiday season. meanwhile, cyber monday still very much going on into cyber week now if you are continuing to look for a good deal, also bleeding into cyber month, craig. >> thank you. this morning we're also
getting a first look at another concerning consequence of these high prices and shortages and it's affecting school children. across montana cafeterias are seeing shortages chicken, pork, milk, cups and others. a school kitchen manager in montana told the free press she can't get her hands on canned corn or whole grain muffins. she says, quote, i've been here since 2001. this is like the hardest school year i've ever had. it's kind of a bummer. tammy joins me now. she is the president of the montana school nutrition association. she's also a school kitchen manager. as she puts it, head lunch lady in ennis, montana. tammy, thank you for your time this morning.
you and your staff serve breakfast and lunch to about 340 students every day. help us understand what it's like to do that job right now even when you can't get your hands on some of the basics like fruits and vegetables? >> it's a challenge for all lunch programs throughout the nation, i believe. it's kind of like when you're playing the walnut game, you never know what you're going to be able to order. my friend said she'll place an order and by the time she places it, several items aren't available. you just kind of have to punt and go with the flow and try to keep the kids happy and fed. the hardest part is trying to follow all the government guidelines. we're supposed to have whole grain everything for breakfast. as of right now, that's pretty much impossible to get those products. >> according to the montana free press, some schools there
scrambling to modify menus or getting rid of popular items entirely. other smaller districts are sending people on runs to local grocery stores to try and get supplies. what are you guys doing? >> actually i'm kind of hoarding food. i'll order a little bit every week if i see like chicken nuggets. if there's two cases available, i'll just order them and hold them for my menus, because our closest walmart or costco for us is an hour drive one way, so i can't really be sending a staff member there because i only have a staff of four, including myself, to feed 320 kids every day or 350. there's only two of us that are full-time, so that makes it hard. my one friend can't even get milk. she's having to pay three times the price for her milk to get
super processed milk. and for a small school, she feeds like 120 maybe, that's a huge hit. no only is it hurts us trying to feed the kids, it's hurting our budget and costing the taxpayers a lot more money also. >> what are the kids saying? >> my kids don't really notice. we make it a really fun lunch room. we have music every friday and they get to dance and sing. so i don't let the kids know. if something doesn't come in, i'm just like you're lucky, you get this today or the truck didn't deliver it. my kids personally have not had to feel the impact. lunch is supposed to be fun and i don't want them to have to worry about if they're going to get food or not. >> tammy, thank you. thanks for all you're doing out there in montana. >> thank you. folks, the market is taking another hit this morning after some new comments from the fed
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right now we're following some image action in the markets because the dow down more than 530 points. it tumbled on the heels of some new comments from fed chairman jerome powell. this is what he told senators during a meeting just last hour. >> at this point the economy is very strong and inflationary pressures are high. it is, therefore, appropriate, in my view, to consider wrapping up the taper of our asset purchases, which we actually announced at the november meeting, perhaps a few months sooner. i expect we will discuss that at our upcoming meeting in a couple of weeks. >> cnbc's dominick chu joins us.
explain the significance of those comments and why they are affecting the markets the way they are. >> the fed is probably in one of if not the most difficult positions it's been in in years now, east of the rock, west of the hard place. they have to figure out which is more important. is it the battle against higher prices and supply chain issues, causing that inflation? or is it trying to protect the economy overall from the possibly effects of this new omicron variant and the possible slowdown that can happen? there's two different policy tacks that go in two different directions if you're trying to fight either one of them. if you are trying to fight inflation and higher prizes caused arguably by the pandemic, what you do is you take money out of the system, you raise interest rates, you remove that stimulus. that will fight higher prices. but if you're fearful that the
markets are unstable and could slow down, you lower interest rates. there's the conundrum. the fed has to try to figure out what the balance is between protecting consumers and protecting the overall economy against what could possibly have with this variant. that's the reason why the markets went lower. with that particular move, interest rates on the rise, the fed would have to remove a lot of the money that's been put into the system to help prop up things like stock and bond and real estate prices but has ultimately led to the rise in things like gasoline and food. this is a very difficult line the fed will have to walk to figure out whether they can make anything happen. policy makers in general, anything happen that can really fight these inflationary pressures, protect all of us consumers while at the same time being mindful of what covid
could do down the line, especially as we approach these winter months. >> some sign posting from the fed chair jerome powell just a short time ago. thank you, sir. meanwhile, good-bye to the crown, hello to the republic of barbados. today marking the first day ever that barbados is officially on its own. it cut ties with the queen of england almost 400 years after the first english ships sailed ashore there. prince charles says his mother, the queen, sends the island her, quote, warmest good wishes. one of the most famous people from barbados, arguably the most famous person from barbados ever, rihanna. on hand for a celebration monday night. the new prime minister declared rihanna a national hero. regular screenings and early treatment, those are the most effective ways to stop
colorectal cancer. we're going to look at one group working to make that difference. first, though, this morning tiger woods holding a news conference, his first since that horrific car accident back in february. he said that he doesn't expect to play golf full-time ever again, but he does eventually hope to compete in some tournaments. this is what he said about his long road to recovery so far. >> it's hard to explain how difficult it's been just to be immobile for three months and just lay there. i was just looking forward to getting outside. especially for a person who has lived his entire life outside, that was the goal. to see some of my shots fall out of the sky a lot shorter than they used to is a little eye opening. but at least i'm able to do it again. that's something that for a while there it didn't look like i was going to. s going to ♪ ♪
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today on this giving tuesday, i want to talk about an issue that's very important to me personally, the fight against colorectal cancer. according to the colorectal cancer alliance, there have already been more than 149,000 this year, 1 in 24 people risk colorectal cancer. we have seen a disturbing trend lately, more younger people being diagnosed as well. i want to mention in full disclosure, i'm a member of the colorectal alliance board. i want to start with some basics. when do people need to start paying attention when it comes
to colorectal cancer. >> when you combine men and women it's the second leading cause of cancer death. new studies estimate that cancer will be the top cause of death in young people ages 20 to 49. it therefore recently the united states prevention services task force lowered the age at which to start the screening from age 50 down to 45 in direct response to this disturbing trend of the rise of young onset colorectal cancer. >> do we know what the impetus is? >> we superintendent it may be lifestyle related. we started to hone in on some of the diet and lifestyle factors that may contribute to an
increased risk including obesity, sedentary behavior, increased consumption of sugary beverages, but clearly these are not the only factors. so more research needs to be done to really identify the under lying cause. >> let's talk about the colorectal cancer alliance for a few moments. >> as you know, greg, my mother unfortunately died on mother's day. and we say one simple test will save your life.
us a idea of the progress made? >> we have seen a decline in the death of people in people over the age of 50 and that is largely because there has been improved uptake and compliance with screening recommendations. i cannot emphasize enough the important of getting it detected early. thank you, this morning, history in paris. a live picture right now of a new honor for josephine baker 40 years after her death. ine baker0 years after her death.
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when the road is all you need, there is no destination. uh, i-i'm actually just going to get an iced coffee. well, she may have a destination this one time, but usually -- no, i-i usually have a destination. yeah, but most of the time, her destination is freedom. nope, just the coffee shop. announcer: no matter why you ride, progressive has you covered with protection starting at $79 a year. voiceover: 'cause she's a biker... please don't follow me in. this morning american legend and global icon josephine baker is receiving one of france's highest honors. it has been nearly 40 years now since she was buried in monaco. today she is becoming the first black woman with a symbolic casket entered into the pantheon there. this is a look at the ceremony right now in paris.
this is an honor usually only reserved for royalty, dignitaries, and more. but josephine baker was born here, in missouri. she made her name in europe as a cabaret dancer, singer, and civil rights activist. she was also a spy in world war ii. she became a spy for france fighting against the nazis. she travelled, built relationships with officers, and shared information hidden on her music sheets. a remarkable woman. a quick note for tomorrow, the supreme court will be hearing oral arguments on the future of roe v. wade hanging in the balance. jose diaz bilart and a team will take you into the room to see
the justices asking questions. first, ab degree ya membershiple andrea mitchell reports is next with kristin welker. good day, this is "andrea mitchell reports." we'll check in with andrea later. i'm kristin wewe'll welker. as leaders at the federal, state, and local level are urges boosters for the fully vaccinated as information on the variant continues to pour in from all across the world. >> we don't have enough information to talk about dire situations. there are some concerning aspects about the