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tv   CNN Newsroom With Alisyn Camerota and Victor Blackwell  CNN  December 2, 2021 12:00pm-1:00pm PST

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and public safety. but district attorney chesa boudin is failing on both. - the safety of san francisco is dependent upon chesa being recalled as soon as possible. - i didn't support the newsom recall but this is different. - chesa takes a very radical perspective and approach to criminal justice reform, which is having a negative impact on communities of color. - i never in a million years thought that my son, let alone any six-year-old, would be gunned down in the streets of san francisco and not get any justice. - chesa's failure has resulted in increase in crime against asian americans. - the da's office is in complete turmoil at this point. - for chesa boudin to intervene in so many cases is both bad management and dangerous for the city of san francisco. - we are for criminal justice reform. chesa's not it. recall chesa boudin now.
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good to be with you. i'm victor blackwell. >> and i'm alisyn camerota. president biden just unveiled his new strategy to fight the pandemic this winter. he presented a plan to protect americans from the delta variant and the new omicron variant, which has now been detected in a second state, minnesota. they had not traveled outside the country but had attended a seminar in new york city the week before. >> they have yet to figure out if omicron travels more quickly
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or makes you sicker, but president biden said the need for vaccinations and boosters is paramount. >> we have the best tools, the best vaccines in the world, the best medicines and the best scientists in the world. we're going to fight this variant with science and speed, not chaos and confusion, just like we beat back covid-19 in the spring and the more powerful dell ta variant in the summer a fall. >> cnn's phil mattingly is at the white house. we also have phil muntean following the new trav-- pete m with the new travel rules. phil, we'll start with you. >> there is no need to panic as we've heard from the white house the last several days, but they are trying to walk through new
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proposals to fight not just the omicron variant, if there is a need for that, but also the delta variant still primary in the country. the message was vaccines and boosters and testing. the president starting a national campaign of sorts to try to get people to get their boosters. if you look over the course of adults right now in terms of numbers, over 70% of u.s. individuals over the age of 18 have been fully vaccinated, but only 23% have gotten boosters. that, if anything else, is what administrators believe is the best at this moment in time given how little is known about the omicron variant. those with private insurance will be able to get free tests. for those that don't have insurance, they are ramping up millions of tests, and they will available to those people as well.
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the president said this. take a listen. >> it's a plan that i think should unite us. i know covid-19 has been very divisive in this country. it's become a political issue which is a sad, sad commentary. it shouldn't be but it has been. now as we move into the winter and face the challenge of this new variant, this is a moment we can put the divisives behind us, i hope. this is a moment we can do what we haven't been able to do enough of through this whole pandemic, get the nation to come together. >> guys, i may be a little business aspirational. the republican committee after he talked about this said it was a failed administration. however, this is a thoughtful proposal and maybe a message of hope from the president, too. >> pete, does this new plan contain new travel requirements? >> they really have to do with battling the omicron variant,
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according to the administration. first the extension of the transportationwide federal mask mandate. it was set to expire february 18, 2022, now set to expire march 18, 2022. also a big change here when it comes to the testing requirements for international travel. this applies to four nationals and -- foreign nationals and u.s. citizens. you were supposed to show a negative coronavirus test within three days of your flight to the u.s., and now it needs to be one day before your flight out of the u.s. this is coming with a lot of pushback from the travel industry, and they say these restrictions, about eight countries in south africa, are really a bit of a knee jerk reaction. i asked scott kirby about this yesterday and he said travel
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restrictions are really not the answer here. >> i don't think travel restrictions are a very effective tool in the toolkit against covid. the most effective tool, frankly, is vaccines and getting everyone vaccinated. >> reporter: when it comes to vaccines, now the question is whether or not the administration will go further on vaccines for travel. remember, foreign nationals coming into the united states still need to prove they are vaccinated. they said if that does get expanded maybe to domestic travel, even, it will kill the major travel rebound we've seen. huge numbers over the travel period, alisyn. we have cnn medical analyst dr. jonathan reiner.
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dr. reiner, i know you've looked at the president's plan. is there anything in particular we need to battle covid? >> i think we're moving the ball in the right direction but it's just not bold enough. the biggest issue is about 55 million adults have chosen not to get vaccinated, and that is the giant pile of dried timber for this relentless fire. the only way to get the recalcitrant group of americans to get vaccinated, i think at this point, is to do what our neighbors in canada have done, which is to require vaccination for air travel in this country. we're requiring people who travel to the united states to be fully vaccinated, but we don't require americans to be vaccinated before they get on airplanes in this country. there are very few places on the planet that have more virus than
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we have in this country right now, and if we're going to incentivize americans, the last 17% of adults who just have refused to be vaccinated to finally get a shot, the way to do it is to require vaccination before air travel in the united states, and i was hoping that the administration would have done that now, be bold, but they just have not felt they can pull that trigger. >> dr. reiner, you've advocated for that and others we've had on this show advocated for that requirement. who manages that? b the bureaucracy that it would take to check and make sure every domestic passenger is vaccinated, does that fall onto the airlines, does it fall onto tsa? who does that? >> we show an i.d. before we go through security. you'll show your vaccine card. look, i think one of the original sins of our pandemic
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response is not instituting a national, digital vaccine verification system for your mobile phone. we had the opportunity to do that right before vaccines were rolled out, but now we're left with vaccine cards, and that's what we have. when you go through security, you show your vaccine card. if you haven't been vaccinated, you can't get on board an aircraft. we're requiring verification for international passengers coming to the united states. why are our requirements lower for the massive number of people who travel every day in this country? >> doctor, one of the things that jumped out at me were the massive supply of treatment pills. it was approved very narrowly, i think in a 13-10 vote.
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is that unusual and what do you think moves the needle in this plan? >> so, alisyn, i think the political message you had earlier in the segment about don't panic about government shutdowns is the same message around don't panic about omicron. nothing has really changed. regardless of how you get to it, we have vaccinated an insufficient number of americans. we probably need to be about 85% or 90% of americans that need to get vaccinated, and having this worker mandate would actually do the trick. i think there is a strategy to try to get to that 85% to 90%. if you couple that with early testing and this plan will include a lot more rapid testing, including free at-home testing which is important, and then these new pills, oral antivirals that are going to be available. the reason that the pfizer pill was approved narrowly was it
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doesn't really seem to be as effective as initially reported and there are concerns about them in pregnant women and nursing moms. >> we've got a challenge out to cut the name of that pill three s sy syllables. figure it out. dr. reiner, let me come back to you. omicron was identified and two hours later it was dominant sequencing in south africa. does that suggest -- we've got two cases identified in the u.s. -- that a similar path would happen here? >> not necessarily. remember in south africa until just a few weeks ago, there was really quite a low amount, small amount of virus circulating, unlike the united states where we are experiencing now 100,000 cases per day. in south africa there was very little circulating virus. so omicron has not had a lot of
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competition. in the united states, there is a tremendous amount of delta around. so it's not at all clear whether omicron will outcomoutcompepe dn the united states, and we'll just have to see. >> what do you think about this medical report that finds that the moderna vaccine is more effective thpfizer? >> for our purposes, the pfizer and moderna are about the same vaccine. whichever one you can get, go get it. if you have been vaccinated, good time to get that booster before the holidays. >> dr. reiner, we, just before the top of the show, got this new analysis that shows johns
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hopkins data that shows the risk of virus is more in red states than blue states, and the states that voted for president trump more likely are a greater indicator of whether they will get vaccinated, certainly if they will get boosted. how does a democratic president break through that wall? president biden has been struggling to do it for his entire administration. >> a democratic president needs the buy-in of the gop. but yet we've had over 100 members of congress refuse to disclose their vaccine status. what kind of a message does that send to their constituents? what we need is both houses of congress on both sides of the aisle to come together and say, this is a war. we need a wartime footing. every member of congress should be telling their constituents,
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you have to go get vaccinated. and show them their vaccine card. and tell their constituents, now you need to get boosted. this is how we get to the other side. only one side of the chorus is singing right now. look, republican politicians somehow believe that this whole notion of vaccination is offensive to their constituents so they don't want to irritate them. but their constituents are dying. the data from hopkins, the cnn analysis, shows you are much more likely to die now of covid if you live in a red state than if you live in a blue state. i it's solely attributable to this gigantic gap in vaccination. only 60% of republicans have been vaccinated. >> we have some members of the senate republicans who are
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threatening to hold up funding to try to defund the president's mandate. we're wrapping here. dr. all -- ali khan, do you have a message? >> same message, get vaccinated and wear a mask. there is this new cnn reporting showing the central role white house chief of staff mark meadows played making baseless conspiracy theories inside the government. and the fox host is saying
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investigators are preparing to interview former president trump's chief of staff mark meadows as new cnn reporting reveals just how far he went to pursue election conspiracy theori theories. >> sources tell cnn that experts reached out to some of the top financial security officials trying to push trump allies to push conspiracy theories and voter fraud. harry is here from the "new york times." harry, no wonder. he's the author of the title of
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his book "the chief's chief." is there any criminal exposure here for him? >> right, and by the way, yes, he is the center of the center. he is trump's conduit to all these agencies for all these wacky theories from distortion of u.s. law to possible international conspiracies with china and the like. and you can see now why they didn't want to refer him for criminal contempt. because with bannon, they lose his testimony when he goes over to the other side. with meadows, they really need it. look, he's got a really solid criminal former deputy attorney general counsel. if they do tiptoe to the edge of criminal exposure, he'll certainly refuse on criminal grounds. for now he is sitting for what the committee is calling an initial deposition, so they have in mind more than one, and
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they've reached a deal to avoid the criminal contempt which would have been catastrophic for him. so he may have some criminal exposure potentially, but he'll steer clear of that and can still give the committee all kinds of valuable information ba because he was, auzs you say, a trump's shoulder in those critical days. this is cnn reporting. two people with direct knowledge told cnn this. officials reached out to the pentagon, national security officer and the office of the director of national intelligence to tell them about election fraud claims, including the china them stat allegation, which told them china could change the election results with the thermostat, swhich flynn an
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powell had been pushing. if he pleads the fifth, does he skirt attempt charges? it's his prerogative, right, to plead the fifth? >> he can plead the fifth, alisyn, but question by question, and he's already going to be giving them a lot of information. by the way, you put your finger right on it. trump wants him, we think now, in terms of jeffrey clark, but anything sydney powell and rudy giuliani was saying, trump wanted meadows to sell to any federal agency and he tried to do it. on the fifth amendment, again, if it gets too uncomfortable, and they're looking at insurrection or fraud, george terwilliger, his very good counsel, former deputy attorney general, will say, take the fifth, and he will. next question, please. that doesn't mean he stands up
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and walks out as jeffrey clark will try to do on saturday. >> let's talk about jeffrey clark. the committee has now voted for this criminal referral but it's not gone to the full house yet. they decided to give him one more shot. he sent a letter saying he's intending to invoke his fifth amendment protections. if they do that, they'll set aside the criminal process, but if he decides to delegitimize this, they'll move to a floor vote. what is the use of that protection? >> it must be question by question invocation. remember, schiff is the next federal prosecutor. they'll sit him down and say, did you have this job? he'll say, on advice of counsel, i decline to answer. they'll go to the next question and next question and probably he'll keep asserting the fifth. he's the one who asked for this
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extra interview because you can't get someone on contempt if they take the fifth. if he talskes it in a blanket w and they serve it up to the department of justice and they see this guy pled the fifth, would that be enough for contempt? i don't think so. i think his game would probably be to go up and make a blanket assertion question by question. it would be, by the way, out of the public eye in a private deposition on saturday, so i think it would be a very uncomfortable but unsatisfying back and forth for both parties. >> a lot to understand here. harry litman, thank you. >> thank you, victor. thanks, alisyn. fox news host larry logan is doubling down on her outrageous comparison of dr. fauci to a nazi, the doctor known as the angel of death. so far knox news has said nothing.
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fox news personality lara logan is doubling down on her absurd comparison of dr. fauci to the holocaust angel of death. he forced grotesque and lethal
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experiments on the nazi camp and on children. >> joining us is rabbi weiss. rabbi, thank you for joining us. i wonder if we should play what lara logan so viewers can hear is again. do you want to hear it again before you comment? >> i know what she said. i feel the same way. it's really demoralizing, despicable, depressing, and it says a lot about not only other kinds of things but about the american political culture. our culture has deteriorated so we can't really agree with each other. >> she said, this is what people say to me, she said. this is the comparison i'm hearing. i'm talking about people all
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across the world are saying this. so, snin other words, these vag sources -- this is so incredible what she's saying. she could mean one person that talked to her, who knows. there is nothing credible about that statement. >> she is known as a credible reporter. >> she was a credible reporter at one time but that time is passed. >> and that's what's hard to understand, she was a credible reporter. for someone in public life to say, i heard, people are saying, what they really are saying is this is my position, this is what i say. >> you also choose -- she's got a program called "lara logan has no agenda." okay. but fox news said nothing about this. lara logan is one person.
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fox news, a corporation. what's your reaction to hearing nothing from the company? >> it's depressing. i run an organization. if somebody who represented my organization said something like that on any issue, i would call them to account, i would ask them to explain themselves. if they misspoke, and we in public life do that all the time, we misspeak, we say things not particularly accurate and we apologize. >> what we've heard from lara logan, what we heard from marjorie taylor greene about gold stars a couple months ago, these are not details that people who just have a cursory understanding of the holocaust know. you have to do a little research. you have to do a little more to reach for this comparison. it's not like, i just kind of made a sloppy comparison. this seems intentional. >> it does, and it seems like it's feeding into a group of people who want to hear this
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kind of message. you know, you mentioned mengolez. you mentioned him as the angel of death. i knew someone in a prison in auschwitz and he knew mengolez. his job was to keep the kids relaxed and without panic so the nazis could send them to the gas chamber without panic. he told me that mengolez would visit once a week. i said, really, you knew him. what was he like? he said he could bounce a baby on his knee one day and send children to the gas chamber the next day. >> what she says she heard it from are such bogus, noncredible sources. we appreciate you coming in and telling us there are real world
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consequences from this garbage. >> thank you. next up, we're going to hear from independent voters about the pandemic, the toxicity in this country. we're going to have "the pulse of the people," next. growing up in a little red house, on the edge of a forest in norway, there were three things my family encouraged:
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we want to know how voters, particularly independent voters, feel about the president's handling of these issues. we assembled a group of self-described independents from tennessee, oklahoma, indiana, michigan and kansas, all of whom have voted for both democrats and republicans in past presidential and statewide races. so here now is our "pulse of the people." the president's poll numbers have gone from i think 49% approval rating on inauguration day. they've gone as high at 52%. now they're down to 42% at last count. what do you blame that on? >> he inherited some really difficult times, the pandemic, our economic situations, the dysfunction in congress. it just is kind of dragging down, i think, americans' opinion of what's going on. and as president, that onus rests on him. >> why don't you all just tell me what grade you would give
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president biden today. >> a "b." a "b." it's been very unique after the insurrection and stop the steal movement, which is really present in our history, and he just maintained a certain level of sanity, and i applaud him for that. >> i would say a "b." between a "b" and a "b minus." >> what's your reasoning? >> i would definitely say he has delivered on many promises but some of them he has not. he promised when he was actually running on his campaign trail that he would wipe out $10,000 worth of student loan debt for every individual that had student loans. that has yet to come to fruition. i'm waiting for that to happen. >> i give president biden a solid "b-plus," maybe an
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"a-minus." he gets blamed for what does or doesn't happen. we're in the middle of a pandemic. we're all exhausted. >> what grade do you give president biden? >> probably a "c-plus." he has not shown the physical restraint i would like to see. at the same time he has done well at at least trying to work in a bipartisan manner. one of the things biden has done really, really well is lead with integrity and with maturity and discipline. >> i would probably go with a "c-minus," because he's definitely an improvement over the last maadministration. there's no doubt on that. but i have yet to see any meaningful addressing of our immigration issues. i have yet to see any meaningful
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movement toward addressing the looming homelessness crisis that's coming. >> i think i would give him a solid b. kind of like what andy said, on a good day maybe a b-plus. >> why not an "a"? what's keeping you from giving him an "a"? >> different stages of the vaccine rollouts, i think there was just some poor communications. >> show of hands, how many of you think president biden could be handling coronavirus better? okay, two of you think he could have been. so, amber, what could he do differently? >> i think a lot of the problems are misinformation. and until that is addressed in a meaningful way, i don't think we're going to see a lot of progress. >> but what could he do about misinformation? >> i think you would have to look at regulations for things like social media, have harsher
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penalties. >> elaine, what do you wish he were doing differently? >> staying out of it. i'm sitting here in wichita, kansas and we are at most 50% fully vaccinated in my county. and what i see here in kansas is i see people saying, well, if a democratic president wants me to do it, then absolutely no, i'm not even going to consider it. >> when you say he should have stayed out of it, what would that look like? >> turn it over to local physicians, to state health officers, stop commenting, stop with the federal mandates. anything that comes to ckansas s a federal mandate from a democratic administration, or even a republican administration, is going to be just instantly laughed at. >> beth, you're in indiana. do you agree with that logic? >> so i'm going to speak from experience as a business owner who has a couple of employees
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that will not get vaccinated. they are both young, and so they both feel like if they even got covid, they probably would not get sick, and if you are vaccinated, you could still potentially spread the virus to other people. so why do they need to get the shot? they just feel like they don't need to get the shot. they're being selfish, and the more that people go at them, you need to get it, you need to get it, the more they kind of push back on, no, i don't think i do. >> let's talk about what you think are the biggest issues right now. >> i think the labor shortage problem, jobs not being filled. >> we have over $1.75 trillion in student loan debt, so i would definitely say that. >> i think our most immediate issue right now is homelessness. >> i think the biggest issue facing america right now is the threat that our democracy faces. the two parties have a
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stranglehold and i'm gravely concerned about what our democracy will have to go through next year and if we'll make it. >> i think the biggest threat is disinformation and misinformation. that really scares me. >> yeah, i think the biggest threat facing our country right now is partisanship. it's this partisan divide, this read team versus blue team, and if i'm on this team, i can't agree with anything that that team says. it's tearing families apart, it's tearing communities apart, and i think that, like andy said, this is the biggest -- our democracy is at risk. >> if the election were held today between president biden and former president donald trump, would you still vote for president biden? >> yes. >> absolutely. >> yes. >> so five of you would. what about you, amber?
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>> that's a "sophie's choice" for me. if i had to choose between the two and there were no other options, i would vote for biden, but i wouldn't be happy about it. >> i think it's interesting, when you hear several of them say the biggest problems are the disinformation and partisanship, that covers everything. that covers, of course, the response to the pandemic, the economic challenges as well. those two are paramount. >> absolutely, and i also thought it was really interesting to talk to them because every one of them had a different issue they wished president biden was more focused on, so you realize how challenging it would be to be president right now. tomorrow we hear from them about whether they think former president trump will run again and what that would look like. >> looking forward to it. the brothers who allegedly faked an attack on jussie smollett detailed in court what
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the actor told them to stage the racist and homophobic hoax. we have the latest from the trial. that's next. onths of premium wireless free on any plan, even unlimited. yeah. even unlimited. that's right. while the big wireless companies spend billions on holiday ads luring you into expensive contracts, we spent $79 on this stock video so we can afford to give you stuff for free. you gotta be into that, right? yes, you can't resist savings. [ joe ] my teeth were a mess. i had a lot of pain. as far as my physical health, my body was telling me you got to do something. and so i came to clearchoice. your mouth is the gateway to your body. joe's treatment plan was replacing the teeth with dental implants from clearchoice. [ joe ] clearchoice has changed my life for the better. it's given me my health back. there's an amazing life out there if you do something for your health now.
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a man who says he was told to fake a hate crime attack on the actor justice smollett has taken the stand and testified smollett had an idea for two maga supporters to attack him so he could put it on social media. >> two brothers allegedly faked the racist and homophobic attack back in 2019. prosecutors say smollett staged it to enhance his hollywood profile. cnn's omar jimenez has been following today's testimony in chicago. >> reporter: the witness told jurors jussi smollett had this crazy idea of having two maga supporters or trump supporters attack him and he was going to post it on social media. prosecutors specifically painted a crucial bottom line over a series of questions tied to that saying mr. smollett asked you to fake attack him pretending to be trump supporters so he could then post it on social media? he answered yes to all three
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questions. we also learned some new details about the alleged plan for the fake attack where he said he was the one designated to put the noose around jussi smollett's neck and he was supposed to pour gasoline on smollett but it changed to bleach because he didn't feel comfortable with that part of the plan. that testimony came after we heard from his brother, who went through cross examination by at times tense cross examination i should say earlier today where the defense accused him or asked at one point if he was in a sexual relationship with smollett to which he denied -- the defense said smollett may not have been serious when this was first brought up because he was smoking marijuana at the time. the defense also accused bola of wanting to do security for smollett and rising tension over not having the job may have been
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a reason for this which he denied. when prosecutors got the chance to speak to him later in the morning they pointed to a crucial threshold in this that neither witness testified that they knew the police were going to be involved at any point of this alleged scheme and that at least ola testified not long ago he wouldn't have been involved at all if he knew the police were going to be called as part of this. that of course is the main crux of what smollett is charged with. it is not necessarily the scheme of the fake hate crime but more that they reported it as a real hate crime to police. >> thank you for the reporting. >> "the lead" with jake tapper starts after a short break. breaking news. but we never envisioned even in a pandemic that we might lose them all.
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regardless of omicron the virus is back on the march. "the lead" starts right now. the biden white house announcing a slew of new steps today to try to slow the spread of coronavirus including the new variant while also trying to urge folks not to panic. president biden needs your vote to get his agenda passed. this hour democratic senator sinema of arizona sits down with cnn for a rare national tv

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