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tv   MSNBC Reports  MSNBC  December 25, 2021 4:00am-5:00am PST

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first up on msnbc, right now many americans trying to get home for christmas are stranded. the omicron surge hitting the airline industry hard. forcing thousands of flight cancellations on one of the busiest travel days of the year. >> it is good to have plan b, c, d, e, f, you know. if i'm not able to get into delta, i'll go on jetblue. >> plus more waiting woes for people trying to get tested. what is next in the push for help and how it is affecting new
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year's eve in times square. and in washington, a house committee investigating the january 6 insurrection is looking at a possible criminal referral for former president trump. the fallout if sitting house republicans refuse to cooperate. as we near the one year mark since that dark day. plus happening just moments from now, a historic space launch that could change our understanding of the universe as we know it. we'll bring you the moment nasa's new james webb telescope blasts off into space and explore what it means for humankind. and joyful gesture sending love across a string of lights. meet the man whose random acts of kindness inspired his entire neighborhood. good morning, merry christmas. it is saturday, december 25th. i'm lindsey reiser. and we have a team of reporters following the latest for you. and we begin with the travel headaches. if you got where you wanted to be this morning, consider
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yourself lucky. covid cases have slammed airline pilots and crew which is means that thousands of canceled flights just before the holiday that thousands of canceled flights just before the holiday. >> you have to cut your losses or reduce your odds before he get your booster, you wear your mask. >> hopefully we're not here, but yeah, it has been okay. again, it wouldn't have been this smooth without the great people that are working for the airlines and the security. so i think that everybody is just doing the best they can. >> it was a madhouse. >> definitely tough, but i think that we're all trying to make the best of it. >> take a look at this map, the states colored red or orange have seen covid cases increase in the last 72 hours. 3.4 million americans have been affected just this month. and in the midst of all this holiday stress, many people are still struggling to find those at-home tests or they are waiting in long lines for a pcr test. we have it all covered for you
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this morning. and liz mclaughlin is live in charlotte. and also molly hunter is in london tracking what is happening overseas. liz, let's start with you. what is the latest on this travel nightmare for so many americans? >> reporter: not a very merry christmas as we heard from some of those travelers. thousands had their flights canceled yesterday and today. according to flightaware, more than 3800 flights have been canceled, more than 1,000 here in the u.s. and the airlines are saying that the omicron is partially to blame for those cancellations. airline workers reporting that they are falling ill or have been exposed to the variant, that highly transmissible variant now accounting for the majority of new covid cases in the u.s. and we're looking at just an increase of 55%. so that is pretty huge. 187,000 new daily cases reported. so 55% increase over the past
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two week. and renewed concern for those unvaccinated individuals, about 40% of americans still not fully vaccinated against the virus. a white house medical adviser dr. anthony fauci had this to say about those still not willing to get the shot. >> when someone says, well, i'm taking my own chances, it is my body, i'll worry about it, nobody should tell me that i need to get vaccinated or that i should wear a mask in an indoor setting, well, that might be fine for you because you have confidence that you are not going to get seriously ill which quite frankly hospitals are full of people who made that mistake. and so are graveyards full of people that have made that mistake. >> reporter: and it is especially concerning as americans gather for the holidays amid community spread. that has been a big rise in
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demand for testing in the past week. we've seen long lines around testing sites like this would be, we're at one of the few that are open on christmas day, but stale few hours until they are open. limited hours usually on the holidays. so the one we're at now will be open from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. but many have maybe called it quits if they weren't able to get a test. and those at-home tests, the rapid antigen tests that you could get at a pharmacy pretty easily, they have been in very short supply. we've seen reports of people going to pharmacies all around their cities or even neighbors cities trying to find one and just coming across empty shelves. national leaders and state leaders have been trying to address the recent crush in that demand, but the aid may come in the new year. so a little too late for this holiday season. biden announced this week that there will be federal testing sites set up and that about half a billion at-home tests will be
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purchased and mailed to americans who want them, buts those deliveries won't come until january. >> holly, how are european countries trying to beat back the surge? >> reporter: yeah, i mean, christmas 2021 is looking a lot like christmas 2020. so here in the uk, where omicron is surging, we hit another record case count yesterday, more than 122,000. no restrictions in yet. the government here has been so obsessed with protecting christmas with allowing families to gather. so there aren't social curbs yet. but next week we expect the serious restrictions to come into the uk. but a quick whip around europe, in scotland, wales, north ireland, they announced curbs on social gathering. and italy banned all new year's celebrations. portugal starting sunday, bars and night clubs will shut, and in germany, a very similar picture starting the 28th, they will limit gatherings to 10 people and close night clubs and
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netherlands start a vehicle lockdown on monday. so it is looking like a quiet new year's celebration across the continent and here in the uk. >> molly and liz, thank you both so much for starting us off. let's welcome in jay schnitzer, co-charp of the health care coalition. and thanks for being with us on this christmas more than. we talk about holiday travel. we're talking about more than 109 million americans that are traveling away from home this holiday week according to aaa. how concerned are you about an even worse surge from christmas gathering we're seeing a surge anyway? >> i am concerned. and by the way, good morning and happy holidays. yes, we are very concerned because there are going to be many gatherings with large numbers of people indoors in poorly ventilated areas with mixed populations of vaccinated and unvaccinated and people not wearing masks. and that is the perfect environment for this variant for
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omicron to spread very, very fast. it is highly transmissible. >> and for fr what we know overall about omicron, yes, highly transmissible, it appears to be milder overall. at least among the vccinated and the boosted. so that said, we know hospitalizations will tick up just because of how contagious this still is. but do you anticipate a plateau with omicron, how bad could it get before then? >> we don't know yet. it is a great question and we don't know the answer. the data coming from south africa and scotland suggests that there won't be as many hospitalizations or as many deaths on a percentage basis, but if you have very, very large numbers of infected people, that is still large numbers of hospitalizations and deaths overall. but when it will plateau and at what level is very uncertain. looks from south africa like it may have peeked and gone down in just a month. if that repeats itself here in the u.s., that would be a good
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sign actually. but it is too soon to know for sure. >> something that we all hope for. the cdc shortened the isolation period for health care workers from ten days to seven days so long as they test negative and they are asymptomatic. what do you think of that move and do you think that it should be expanded to more groups of people, maybe even everyone? >> well, i think that it was necessary because it is really important to protect health care delivery in our country going forward over the coming weeks as the surge increases. so doing that, putting more health care workers back to work is great. i don't see it for the general population necessarily. i don't think that that will be necessary. and i doubt very much that it will be implemented for the rest of us. but certainly for health care workers, it is a good idea. >> doctor, put into perspective for us where we are in the fight this christmas as opposed to where we were a year ago. i mean, now we have widespread vaccines, we have therapeutics. but we're also seeing record
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cases. so where are we right now? >> well, this virus, the coronavirus, has taught us to be humble. every time we think that we have a handle on it and that things will get better, it throws us another curve ball. so we're definitely in a different place than we were a year ago just as you said with the vaccines and the antivirals and other things in the pipeline and much of the population vaccinated. but we don't have enough people vaccinated. and omicron is very infectious, much more so than other variants. what i worry about most is what is next. this virus will continue to mutate. so once we're past omicron, hopefully in the next few week, there will be another one. and then perhaps another one. so we need to really prepare ourselves for this for the long haul. >> before we let you go, i only have a few seconds left but, but let's talk about those antiviral treatments because the fda cleared a second one from merck. how much of these treatments
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changing the game here? >> i think that they will make a -- have an impact and a pretty substantial impact, but they won't turn it around completely. they need to be used early so we need to have the abilities to make the diagnosis early which means that we need to have enough testing for people to test early on. and then they need to be prescribed. so an individual once they have a positive test needs to go to a licensed practitioner, get a prescription and then have it available so there needs to be enough production, enough manufacturing and enough distribution. that will all take time before we have it at scale in this country. several weeks at least and perhaps months. so it will be important and useful, but it won't turn everything around immediately. >> all right. dr. schnitzer, thanks so much for joining us. >> thank you. still ahead, making more cuts. some democrats are still working to scale back president biden's "build back better" social spending legislation. but what chance do they have of passing it? and coming up next, historic
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launch is happening any moment, a telescope set to launch a million miles into space to unveil the secrets of the universe. we'll take you there live. here . ever notice how stiff clothes can feel rough on your skin? it's because they rub against you creating friction. and your clothes rub against you all day. for softer clothes that are gentle on your skin, try downy free & gentle. just pour into the rinse dispenser and downy will soften your clothes without dyes or perfumes. the towel washed with downy is softer, fluffier, and gentler on your skin. try downy free & gentle. recognized by the national psoriasis foundation and national eczema association. hey businesses! you all deserve something epic! so we're giving every business, our best deals on every iphone - including the iphone 13 pro with 5g. that's the one with the amazing camera? yep! every business deserves it... like ones that re-opened! hi, we have an appointment. and every new business that just opened! like aromatherapy rugs! i'll take one in blue please! it's not complicated.
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25 years, $10 billion and 10,000 people, that is what it took to make nasa's james webb telescope. and it all comes down to today, christmas morning. right now we're looking at a live shot from inside mission control here, we are just minutes away from this launch. so why is this so critical? well, this is a mission that could change our understanding of the universe as we know it. many scientists saying that it will usher in a new era of astronomy. the telescope is set to replace hubble, it will give us the first glimpse of the early universe which galaxies were first believed to be formed 100 years after the big bang, the closest scientists have come so far. so there is a lot riding on this
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mission. there is also a potential for a lot of different things to go wrong. with me right now is an astrophysicist at north carolina state university. so happy to have you with us. you are not the only one up early on this christmas morning, although nasa scientists are busy at work getting all the final protocols done. just about 3:32 away from launch. so this telescope is as big as a tennis court. it is huge. why are the first few days so critical? >> so you have to be very careful. first of all, the telescope is so big that we can't fit it on to a rocket. so what we had to make was a foldable telescope. on like an origami structure. you have 18 hexagon mirrors, and you have little mirrors on top of the rocket.
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and then you launch it. and first you have to deploy the sun shield so that you are protecting the telescope from the sun. which is huge. the sun shield will stretch out to be as big as a tennis court. and it will just then slowly sail away from us a million miles away and then slowly deploy these hexagonal shapes. this is the largest ever space telescope we've ever launched. >> amazing. >> yeah. >> and we are about two minutes away. and if we do get countdown, i'll have to interrupt you. but i want to look at that it will study things like super massive black holes, dark matter of space, but also investigation get a a question that we've been wondering for ages, are we alone. what are you most eager to learn? >> absolutely. it will usher in a new era for astronomy for sure. a big question is are we alone and how did we get here. so the galaxies you see today
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are big and they have old stars with complex chemicals, you know, like organic matter like us. but as the universe began, it had to evolve to be where we are today. how did the first galaxies form. so that a big request that it will ask and how did it recycle material inside the stars, form the heavier elements that make us today, how it expelled them and made what we are today. and that is the big question we'll ask. >> and we're less than a minute away. when can we start gleaning information from the telescope, how long until it reaches it final destination and when can the public start getting information? >> sure. it is going to reach its million mile away destination in a month, but then it has to cool down so it can start to observe. so it will take around six
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months before we get the scientific data. so we have to be a little patient. >> i was thinking -- this is your life and work. i was thinking years. so that to me is amazing that we could find out in just a matter of months. all right. we'll go ahead and listen in live. >> three, two, one -- >> engine start. and liftoff. from a tropical rainforest to the edge of time itself, james webb begins a voyage back to the birth of the universe. punching a hole through the clouds, 20 seconds into the flight. good pitch program reported.
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vehicle performance is nominal. and the arion 5 rocket continues to fly uphill in nominal fashion. the rumble of the powerful being felt here in the control center. 3d animation. >> this is the view that we've been waiting for. we saw some clouds, it was a little tough to see. but we just saw the countdown launching from france, liftoff after they counted down. and what is your reaction to this moment right now? >> i'm giddy, i'm so excited about it. we can't wait for the first data to get into our hands.
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we've been working very hard for it. so it is an exciting time for astronomy. >> i want to talk to you about also this kind of moment in the year that we've had when we talk about the space race, we've seen commercial flights, we've seen captain kirk go to space, we've gotten pictures back from mars. it has been a remarkable year. >> space industry has changed dramatically. private industry has come in and i think that we do still need nasa to do the pioneering science. to launch these missions is very expensive and you have to invent technologies do it, it is not commercially profitable. but it pushes our knowledge forward and it actually informs us and provides us technology for future industrial use. so we really need nasa to push these missions forward and really, you know, bring forth the new era of discovery in front of us.
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>> and so quickly, 2:30 into the launch, we just saw two pieces of machinery fall away. were those boosters? >> yes, i think so. i think the primary stage probably fell off. this is an animation of course. the primaries fell off. it will keep going for nine minutes or so and then it will separate. and then deploy the antennas. >> fascinating. all right, just been such a joy to talk to you. thank you for joining us. and of course we'll keep monitoring the feed. appreciate your time. >> thank you for having me. all right. still ahead, a possible doj criminal investigation into former president trump. the house committee investigating january 6, weighing its options. the specific piece of information that they are looking for, ahead. ing for, ahed progressive rewards you for driving safe and driving less. okay, what message did you hear this time? safe drivers can save using snapshot? -what's snapshot? -what the commercial was about.
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we're learning new information about the direction the investigation into the
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attack on the u.s. capitol might be taking. former president trump could be referred to the justice department for criminal prosecution by the committee probing the attack. this is according to committee chair bennie thompson who told the "washington post" that trump's delayed response to the attack represents a, quote, deer dereliction of duty. the former president has appealed to the high court to block the release of white house records from the national archives. the committee is asking the supreme court to weigh in on trump's request by mid-january. and new reporting reveals that the current trump spokesperson who was cooperating is now suing the panel to block it from getting his financial records. for more, we're joer edjoined b surkan. no shortage of up at a times. >> yeah, congress is out but the committee has not slowed down
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their work. yes, that spokesperson sued the panel and nancy pelosi and jpmorgan. and he says he doesn't want the committee to obtain his financial records, his lawyer in the lawsuit states that he has provided more than 1700 pages of documents already. he turned up for his deposition earlier in december. and the committee subpoenaed him in their wave of subpoenas at the end of november trying to find out who was involved in the rallies. they want to know if he spent his money, how much he spent, all those financial discloures and that is what he doesn't want the committee to get. we reached out to the committee and to his lawyer for more information, but i want to talk to you about some other things that the committee is focused
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on. remember last week they wanted to hear from jim jordan, scott perry, the two republican lawmakers. they did not subpoena them, but they both don't have plans to comply with the investigation. scott perry tweeted calling it illegitimate. so we have to see how that shakes out. and there are new developments with kerrik, he was subpoenaed earlier in the month and his lawyer said that he will turnover documents next weekend a possibly appear for his deposition in mid-january as well. but as jordan has stated, he wants those documents made public as well because of his distrust with the committee. >> julie, thank you so much for all of that. and we'll dive more into this. i'm joined by democratic strategist michael sir hopkins and also a criminal defense attorney. jeffrey, as a criminal defense attorney, if the national archives do in fact release those documents that trump is trying to block, what could potentially be damaging to him as the committee weighs this
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possible criminal referral? >> it is clear that the committee is looking for all communications involving trump and his higher ups, people in the war room, in the willard, and anything else that would impact on trump being aware of what was going on, was part of the pleading and was essentially obstructing an official proceeding. and the committee is looking at two potential allegations against trump and his higher ups. wire fraud and obstruction. and the wire fraud is very simple because the wire fraud is if trump and others are raising money off of an election that they are saying was stolen, it is a lie. and if it is a lie, then there is fraud, people are donating money when they shouldn't have. in terms of the obstruction, i think that it is pretty clear what the committee is looking for and so far they have obtained numerous documents and they are looking for that link between trump and the others who are involved. >> michael, the committee has asked congressman scott perry
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and jim jordan to voluntarily testify before them let's listen -- >> i got real concerns about any committee that will take a document and alter it and completely mislead the american people like they did last week and it looks like it wasn't just one document they did this with, it was others, other text messages as well. so i got real concerns with that. >> so based on the behavior so far that we've seen from bannon and meadows and what we heard, we expect jordan and perry to testify voluntarily and if they don't, what kind of political fallout are we looking at if committee members start to issue subpoenas to their own? . >> let my say jim jordan looks like a scared man. he openly admitted to talking to the president on that an and now doesn't want to appear.
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so you have to ask why. and so is bennie thompson willing to subpoena members of congress. given the serious nature of what happened on january 6 and our need to get to the bottom of what happened, i think that he will have to subpoena them. >>en would of the big things on the agenda early in the new year is trump's scheduled deposition as part of that civil fraud investigation in new york and trump is now suing new york attorney general latisha james to try to block her from continuing to investigate his business. katie phang writes this is just another move to deflect and delay. is she right? >> how many litigations has trump filed where he's lost. and i would say that it is probably 99% of them. i think that he has an absolutely zero chance of stopping his deposition. on the other hand, i think that the chances of him testifying on
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january 7th are very negligible. what he is doing is filing these lawsuits to try to perpetrate delay and delay and delay. and he lost the election lawsuits as well. so that is his strategy. he is trying to play it out in terms of the house and if the house overturns. however, what he may not be counting on is garland is on a different time table. garland is on a four year time table. he doesn't have to follow the house committee time table. and we don't know what garland is doing. there has been criticism, is garland proceeding forward, is the grand jury proceeding, we don't know yet. but he is on a different time. >> and he is entitled of course to due process. but what does this mean in terms of justice in seeing some accountability? >> he is entitled to due process, but judge jackson said 70 years ago that the constitution is not a suicide pact. he has raised numerous
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allegations involving violations of the constitution, due process, fifth amendment -- excuse me, 14th amendment, and the constitution has to be resolved where it benefits society. >> all right. jeffrey, we'll have to leave it there. thank you, michael. good to see you both. up next respect the once $6 trillion "build back better" bill is now getting cut back even more thanks to joe manchin. and how is his party willing to go to win him over? don't go away. over don't go away. othes to smell freshly washed all day without heavy perfumes? now they can! with downy light in-wash freshness boosters. just pour a capful of beads into your washing machine before each load. to give your laundry a light scent that lasts longer than detergent alone, with no heavy perfumes or dyes.
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[ cheering ] that's my boy. welcome back. here are other stories we're following this morning. it is a wild christmas weather-wise. parts of the pacific northwest are getting a rare white capacity. nevada getting up to 10 feet 6 snow. but most of the country will experience unseasonably warm temperatures. prosecutors in michigan say the parents of an accused school shooter ignored warning signs. in new court record, james and jennifer crumbley were aware that their son had been watching video shootings. and that he had tortured animals and that baby bird's head was
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discovered? a jar in his bedroom. their attorney has not responded for requests for comments. the couple is trying to get their half million dollar bond overturned. they are facing involuntary manslaughter charges. and pope francis gave his annual christmas message. he talked about keeping peace in our hearts despite all the conflicts in our world. and he talked about the spike of domestic violence. and it comes as many churches in the u.s. decided to cancel christmas services because of the surge in covid cases. president biden was hoping that by now americans would be getting ready to unwrap the benefits of his landmark "build back better" legislation, that includes free pre-k, paid energy and much more. but that plan seems to be
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hanging on by a tinsel after joe manchin said that he would not vote for the bill. so what is next, break it up, try to bring senator manchin back to the table? everything seems to be on the table. and josh letterman is at the white house. we know the president is celebrating the holiday at the white house. but this issue will be front and center for him as the new year begins. >> reporter: it sure will be. and there is a reason that the white house and president biden remain insistent that they have not given up hope on"build back better". if president biden doesn't get some type of "build back better" length legislation through, it is increasingly likely that his promises as a on paid leave and pre-k won't happen. and so there is talk about as you mentioned breaking this up into smaller pieces.
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but the real problem there is that requires not being able to use reconciliation for all of these measures, which is the way they want to do this with 50 votes, but you can't use it endless times. every time you use reconciliation, republicans get to do a vote-a-rama where they force all kinds of unseemly votes on to democrats to make it harder for them in the midterms. and that leaves the manchin route. the white house feels good after president biden had that call with manchin shortly after he dropped had bombshell on fox news that he is not saying no to everything game over let's go home. he is saying no to this. and that there is some hope next year to get him on board with something. but i think that we should make really clear to people what democratic sources tell us privately, which is if there is legislation to be done with manchin next year, it is not about getting him on board to biden's version of "build back better," it is about sitting back, starting from scratch and figuring out what manchin can actually support and then trying to build back from there. >> wow. all right.
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josh letterman, thanks so much. and coming up, we'll round out the year with a closer year at president biden's 2021 and the key moments that got us here. and plus when one neighbor was going through hard times, her community had a bright idea to help show support in a colorful way. their heartwarming story, next. for softer clothes that are gentle on your skin, try downy free & gentle downy will soften your clothes without dyes or perfumes. the towel washed with downy is softer, and gentler on your skin. try downy free & gentle.
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knowing where you came from, it gives you a sense of “this is who i am”. oh my goodness... wow, look at all those! you get hungry for more and then you're just like, “wow, i'm learning about my family.” yeah, yep. which one, what'd you find? lorraine banks, look, county of macomb, michigan? look at grandma... hey grandma! unbelievable. everybody deserves to know who they are and where they came from. ohhh...cool. this whole journey has been such a huge gift for our family. ♪ for our family. when our daughter and her kids moved in with us... our bargain detergent couldn't keep up. turns out it's mostly water. so, we switched back to tide. one wash, stains are gone. [daughter] slurping don't pay for water. pay for clean. it's got to be tide. ♪♪ this flag isn't backwards. it's facing this way because it's moving forward. ♪♪ just like the men and women who wear it on their uniforms
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it has been almost one year since president biden took the oath of office. and he is entering 2022 without his signature "build back better" plan in place. a lot of unknowns right now around the coronavirus crisis. monica alba has a look back at the president's first year. >> reporter: every president's first year in office tests the power of promise. marked with campaign pledges kept and those still unfulfilled. >> we're going to keep up the fight until we get it done. >> reporter: before president biden was even sworn in, he knew the coronavirus pandemic would
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largely define the beginning of his term. >> to heal, we must remember. >> reporter: honoring the hundreds of thousands dead on the eve of his inauguration. >> this is democracy's day. a day of history and hope. >> reporter: the biden/harris administration launching a massive effort to get americans vaccinated. >> it is time to act. we can reduce suffering in this country. >> reporter: leading to the president's first legislative victory in march. in the form of a $1.9 trillion covid relief bill. as 100 days in office marked more than 100 million covid vaccine shots administered. >> go get vaccinated, america. >> reporter: still, many refused to roll up their sleeves. even as new variants brought spikes and surges. >> it has become a political issue which is a sad, sad
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commentary. >> reporter: the biden administration's mandate for contractors and private businesses challenged in courts. >> it is not about getting the vaccine, it is about the choice. >> reporter: rules and enforcement across the country a tangled web as u.s. covid deaths topped 800,000 and normal never quite returned. >> do not wait. go get your booster if it is time for you to do so. >> reporter: overseas, high stakes challenges on the world stage. as the u.s. rejoined the paris agreement, the international treaty on climate change. >> the united states is determined, determined to reason gauge with europe. >> reporter: while also placing sanctions on russia ahead of a critical face-to-face summit with vladimir putin. afghanistan would move front and center after the president announced his decision to withdraw all troops from the country by the 20th anniversary of september 11th. >> we'll do it responsibly, deliberately and safely.
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>> reporter: underestimating how quickly the taliban would take control, resulting in a chaotic and deadly evacuation. >> i am president the united states of america. and the buck stops with me. but i do not regret my decision to my decision to end america's war fighting in afghanistan. >> the president followed up on his pledge to combat global warming at a major u.n. summit in glasgow. >> we meet with the eyes of history upon us. >> a key part of the president's domestic agenda. revoking a permit for the xl pipeline and the national wildlife refuge in alaska. also keeping his word when keeping a diverse cabinet and reversing the ban on transgender personnel in the armed forces. >> transgender personnel if qualified in every other way can serve in the united states military. >> after months of capitol hill
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negotiations and democratic infighting a scaled back $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill is signed into law. >> america's moving again and your life is going to change for the better. >> while the second half of the president's economic agenda, a massive social spending and climate plan, is now in limbo. with no clear path forward. along with other major priorities, still stalled in congress. >> free the vote. >> like voting rights. >> that people need. people act. >> police reform. >> there ain't no justice in the south. >> creating a pathway to citizenship. >> a promise for promise for immigrant family, nothing has changed. >> and making roe v. wade the law of the land. >> abortion still needs to be legal. >> with much still unfinished, the president will now take the country into a new year of change and challenges ahead of
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the critical 2022 midterm election. monica alba, nbc news, the white house. all right, now, for a story that will give you all the feels and get you in the holiday spirit, if you need some help getting there, it started with just one strand of christmas lights, that inspired an entire movement in a baltimore county neighborhood, kim hortons what home when she got a text from her neighbor matt rigs who told her to peek outside, rigs had strung from christmas lights from his home to hers, because she needed some cheering up, in the days after, it evolved into something much bigger. we're happy to have matt rigs and neighbor kim mort within us right now. good morning. thanks for joining us so bright and early. matt, we'll start you with. what a cool idea. what inspired this gesture. >> hi, good morning. merry christmas. what inspired the gesture, it has been such a difficult time
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and i wanted to bring, i wanted to put the christmas lights up a little bit early this year, last year, and i knew that, i was having a hard time, at that moment, just covid, and trying to get the kids engaged to a school, and i knew that my good friend kim morton was not having a good time either, it was really a difficult time. so when i was finished rigging up the lights, in our yard, and the bushes, i ran it up the tree, and i thought, i want to see if i can connect over across the street, so i took the line of lights across the street, ran it up through her tree, through the morton's tree, and connected it to their, to their porch as well. and it was just this beautiful connection in physical form.
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it was neat. and i was so excited that i reached out to kim. >> i mean we all have kind of been little starved for that kind of connection over the last couple of years, kim, what was going on for you at the time, and what was your reaction to seeing the lights? >> well, for me, i think like a lot of people, the pandemic, the isolation, trying to get kids, two teenagers, matt and i both have teenaged kid, trying to get them engaged in school, a senior in high school, going through the celebration, the college search, job stress, worrying about financial uncertainty, and on top of that, just the biochemistry and a genetic predisposition to anxiety and depression had me curled up in the basement and watching movie with my daughter as much as possible and when i got his text, we came upstairs and it literally made me look up out of the darkness, it was a touching
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moment. >> how incredibly poignant. >> matt, why do you think so many other people were inspired to follow your lead? >> i think honestly because we needed it. i'll tell you, i was, i wasn't aware that i needed it, and i really felt a lot of joy once that was up, and i think that that resonated with a lot of folks. being such a difficult time, it really was just something that we all could relate to, and what it did partly was it lit up the outside. we can't be inside, because we're all isolated, because of the pandemic. and now, you've got this lit up safe outdoor space, where we can all get together again. so my wife and two kids, we come outside, and there's all of these other families and they're walking through all of the
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lights, that's how i think it took off with, you know, with most people, i do know that my, down the street neighbor, leva, saw our lights up and said hey, i want to do that too so she contacted ryan across the street and the two of them coordinated and got lights up and from there, it really did just take off. and i think it was something you're right, we were just starved for it, we just needed that connection. >> well, matt rigs and crim morton, thank you not only for sharing your story but just joining us on christmas. i know you guys want to be with your family and there are prens to be opened, but thank you so much for inspiring us. and thank you for watching msnbc reports. i'm lindsey riser. i'll be back at 12:00 p.m. eastern. velshi starts after a quick break. stern. velshi starts after a quick break. its highly active peroxide droplets... ...swipe on in seconds. better. faster. 100% whiter teeth.
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gold bond. champion your skin. ♪ christmas music ♪ ♪♪♪ ♪♪♪ if your dry eye symptoms keep coming back, what?! no! over the counter eye drops typically work by lubricating the eyes and may provide temporary relief. xiidra works differently, targeting inflammation that can cause dry eye disease. it can provide lasting relief. xiidra is the only fda-approved non-steroid eye drop specifically for the signs and symptoms of dry eye disease. one drop in each eye, twice a day. don't use if you are allergic to xiidra. common side effects include eye irritation, discomfort or blurred vision when applied to the eye, and unusual taste sensation. don't touch container tip to your eye or any surface. after using xiidra wait 15 minutes before reinserting contacts. ♪♪♪ this holiday,
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it is saturday, december 25th, i figure you already knew that. merry christmas. i'm ali velshi, a spike of coronavirus cases are hanging heavily over this holiday season, we still have more questions when it comes to the omicron variant and this morning we will try to bring clarity. the seven-day average, with an average of about 1,180 deaths per day. but there is some good news. this week,

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