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tv   The Lead With Jake Tapper  CNN  December 16, 2021 1:00pm-2:00pm PST

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breaking just moments ago a cdc panel unanimously voting to recommend pfizer and moderna over the j&j vaccine. dr. sanjay gupta is here to explain why. plus lifting the curtain on behind-the-scenes efforts to overturn the election. then bravery above all else. a moment years in the making. three american heroes finally awarded the highest honor at the white house. welcome to "the lead." i'm jake tapper. we begin in our health lead. moments ago cdc vaccine advisers unanimously voted to recommend americans should get the moderna vaccine or the pfizer vaccine because they say those two are safer than j&j's vaccine. this hour president biden is set to meet with his covid team to discuss the fast spreading omicron variant as cases are surging across the united states
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and disruptions to every day life are once again becoming reality. in the past week at least four colleges and universities in the northeastern united states have either shut down, shifted classes from in person to virtual or moved final exams online. multiple broadway shows have canceled performances in the nfl, nba, and nhl. all had to postpone games or sideline players. this comes as dr. anthony fauci issues two serious warnings. one, the winter surge is here, and as cnn's nick watt reports, fauci says it is only a matter of time until omicron becomes the dominant variant in the u.s. >> tina among broadway shows canceling performances once more after cases among the cast just two months after reopening. princeton and nyu just joined cornell and others moving what's left of the semester back online. a depressing dose of dejavu.
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officials in philly are warning, don't party with people outside your household over the holidays. >> it is hard and feels impossible and unfair. these gatherings with friends and family are when we infect each other with covid. >> pro sports teams demonstrating how the virus is spreading. odell beckham jr. scored monday night and next morning joined the long list of players and staff testing positive and quarantining after exposure. >> really a window into community spread. kudos to the sports leagues because they are actually doing a fantastic job of surveillance testing. and the rest of the country, we're driving a car down a dark road with the headlights off while looking in the rear view mirror. >> reporter: covid-19 cases and hospitalizations climbed around 40% this past month. deaths says the cdc forecast to rise in the month ahead. the delta variant still rampant. omicron on the rise. >> very soon it is going to be
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the dominant variant. we've seen that in south africa. we are seeing it in the uk. i'm absolutely certain that is what we're going to be seeing here relatively soon. >> reporter: no need at this point for an omicron specific booster vaccine, says dr. fauci, but this variant is now the most complete escapee say researchers in a new preprint study although the vaccines are still highly effective at preventing severe disease or death. >> it is reassuring these infections seem less severe but that is really only true probably if you are a healthy person who has been immunized ideally with three shots. if we have enough of these infections which it looks like we are going to our health care system has again the potential to be really overwhelmed. >> reporter: those cdc advisers who just voted to say the mrna vaccine should be preferred over johnson & johnson spent hours going through studies that show
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the johnson & johnson vaccine is perhaps less effective and, also, they discussed those rare blood clots associated with the j&j vaccine. very rare, but slightly less rare than previously thought. now, the j&j vaccine will still, they say, should still be available for people who either had an allergic reaction to mrna vaccine or just can't get one or who despite knowing the risks would just prefer to get johnson & johnson. everything is still available but they are saying mrna is now preferred over the j&j. that's their recommendation. >> nick watt, thanks so much. let's talk about this with cnn's chief medical correspondent dr. sanjay gupta. let's start with this news. the cdc vaccine advisers voting to recommend pfizer or moderna over the johnson & johnson vaccine. what is this about? what do the 16 million americans who got the j&j vaccine need to know about this?
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>> first of all, if people have received it already, i don't think this is cause for concern. because we know that the vaccine has been out there for sometime. if they were going to have some of these side effects nick was talking about, they typically happen soon after people receive the shot within the first couple weeks or so. so it is still protective vaccine. but what the advisers have said is two things. one is that if you look at the mrna vaccines they are more effective than johnson & johnson. number two is there is a very small but higher risk of something that is known as these blood clots with the johnson & johnson vaccine. let me show you the numbers specifically here. give you an idea how rare this is, we looked at the cases through the end of august and there were a total of 54 of these rare blood clotting sort of conditions out of 14 million doses. and by the, sort of the second week of december, nine deaths out of 17 million. still rare but this is i think
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what really drove their decision. there's 17 million out of some 200 million shots that have been given. 17 million have been johnson & johnson. so this is a small percentage over all but i think what they're saying basically is now going forward they recommend the mrna vaccines. >> let's put the graphic up again if i could, sanjay. i want to make sure i'm understanding this correctly. you're saying that nine people who got the j&j vaccine died of that rare clotting condition? is that right? >> that's right. you know, so it is -- that is a concern obviously, less than 1 in a million but something i think they've been discussing for sometime. they first noticed concerns about these clots even during the trials. now you're seeing it in larger numbers overall. but, still, rare. we can break it down further if you want, jake, and look at men, women, look at age groups. this appears to be primarily something that affects women. usually between the ages of 30
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and 50 or so. but, you know, this is the sort of -- it is worth pointing out, jake, this is the sort of level of detail that these investigators can find. you know, 9 out of 17 million, that is something that pops up. and they then act on it. in this case saying, hey, look. we're no longer going to recommend this as strongly as we recommend the mrna vaccines. it gives you an idea how they look at these side effects and how specific they can get in this case with these blood clots. >> the chart you just showed of cases where it is impacting women in their 30s more than any other group, that is just cases of the clotting condition. it's not deaths from it, am i right? >> correct. >> do we know, the nine people who died, do we have any idea if there was anything that they had in common? >> i don't know for certain. i think they were also more likely to be women in that age range but i don't have the numbers in front of me. you know, this is something that
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may be related to something that is going on hormonally with women at that age, that may be exacerbating the issues, could be related to birth control pills, smoking. they are not sure of the risk factors exactly but those are the numbers. >> all right. we just heard from nick about all the broadway shows and professional sports games being canceled or postponed. the science shows that if you're vaccinated and you test positive, it is highly likely your symptoms will be much milder than if you're unvaccinated and test positive. i mean, given the new reality is it time for public health officials to update their guidance on how theaters and universities and pro sports leagues handle covid surges given the fact that we know that a case of covid is not the same thing as a hospitalization due to covid, it is not the same thing as death due to covid. we know a lot more about this now than we did a year ago when these kinds of delayed athletic events, etcetera, were starting
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to happen. >> yeah, jake. i think we'll get to that point where we'll have these discussions in terms of what we are willing to tolerate with regard to covid. how many hospitalizations, how many deaths? un, those conversations will happen. but right now if you look at the map of the country, there are two things to point out. one is there's still a ton of viral transmission. so, yes. there may be milder cases overall with omicron, but when you have that much viral spread, compounded by the fact you have 90 million people who still have not been vaccinated, that's a prescription for some real problems. i should point out, jake, as well, when you think about the idea of how much immunity exists in the community, it is a question that comes up. with vaccines, with previous infections how much immunity really exists. sometimes the way to know that is to see what is happening as the virus sort of spreads. hospitalizations are going up. so while there may be immunity
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out there, it is not enough. because people are still getting really sick. you know, 1300 people are still dying every day, you know, right now, on average. if you do the math that is over 400,000 deaths a year if those numbers crept up. yes, i think at some point the policies have to change and say, look. should a mild breakthrough case be treated the same as a severe breakthrough case? i think those conversations will happen. but i don't think we're there yet. >> is it fair to say you don't quarantine a workplace or school when the flu is spreading, which it does pretty much every winter. why do we need to quarantine when covid is spreading? is that fair? >> yeah. i think it's fair. it is the same sort of thing. what are we willing to tolerate as society? we pulled some flu numbers and can put those up. how many cases of flu, how many hospitalizations, how many deaths. well, look. in a given year flu can also kill 60,000 people a year. i feel like it is a difficult, uncomfortable conversation, but
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in a way, in the united states, we have sort of gotten to the point where we accept that. res less than half adults were getting a flu shot before this pandemic as well. we sort of got to the point where we say we'll accept that. with covid we are nowhere near those numbers. it is well over 400,000. 1300 people dying a day. what are we willing to tolerate? i think ultimately it'll settle into a place where we say, okay. this is -- we are no longer going to quarantine or do things because we can tolerate this. one thing i think drives that more than anything else, jake, is hospitalizations. we have some 67,000 people in the hospital right now. if you look at the covid hospitalizations, the vast majority of them are unvaccinated. >> right. >> you can look at the unvaccinated versus the vaccinated. so if the country was more like the green line, than the red line, we'd probably be having the conversation you're talking about. yes, there's a lot of breakthrough case buss they are not getting sick, not
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overwhelming hospitals. we can start to pull back maybe on mitigation measures like quarantines but not yet, jake, for all the reasons i mentioned. >> thanks so much. appreciate it. up next the republican lawmaker now admitting he sent a plan for a coup or forwarded it to donald trump's chief of staff the day before the insurrection. plus one ethics expert claims it is like saying let them eat cake. the outcry over a comment from house speaker nancy pelosi about members of congress and stocks. that's ahead. you trade in your olds, when or damaged phone. better? (guy) better. (kate) hey. and up to $1,000 when you switch. (carolers) [singing] betttttter. because everyone deserves better.
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in our politics lead republican congressman of ohio admitting he was the lawmaker who forwarded a coup plan to then trump chief of staff mark meadows the day before the insurrection. the text further revealing the intense pressure campaign put on vice president mike pence by republicans and trump supporters to overturn the results of the election. we'll go live to capitol hill for more. jordan is trying to defend the text that he forwarded.
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what is he saying. >> reporter: his office is really downplaying the motivation behind jordan forwarding that text message to mark meadows on the day before january 6th and suggesting that perhaps he wasn't endorsing the content of that text message but was instead just passing along this legal theory from a former government lawyer who had texted the information to him and then his office saying jordan then just forwarded the text on to mark meadows the then white house chief of staff. to be clear, the contents of the text message are still pretty alarming. it was a legal theory that suggested that vice president mike pence had the sole authority to determine whether or not votes were constitutionally cast and he could cherry pick which ones he thought were and weren't and toss out the rest essentially interrupting the certification of the election results. it goes to show the intense pressure campaign being put on the white house and specifically
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pence to do just that. find a way for pence to stand in the way of the certification process. we know of course pence refused to do so but the anger surrounding pence's lack of cooperation with some of these people looking to basically end run the democratic process is part of why we saw a riot on capitol hill on january 6th. >> let's not forget house republican leader kevin mccarthy tried to put jim jordan on the committee investigating january 6, talk about the fox guarding the hen house. we knew the committee would call conspiracy theorist alex jones and roger stone to testify. are those depositions still going to happen? >> they are still scheduled. roger stone set to appear tomorrow in front of the committee and alex jones' deposition scheduled for saturday. at this point the committee has not said either will be postponed. roger stone in particular is signaling he will actually show up. he has said he will plead the fifth when asked any questions. the committee has made it clear
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you can't just send a letter and plead the fifth. you have to come in and answer questions and in a statement to cnn his attorney making it seem that is exactly what stone will do. we have no idea what jones' plans are. he is scheduled to be here on saturday. though there has been some defiance with some of the witnesses that have been close to the former president donald trump the committee is still getting cooperation. we learned today they spoke for several hours with former department of homeland security official ken cuccinelli who said he answered all of their questions, did not talk about any specific conversations that he had with president trump, but said that he was asked questions about the chief of staff mark meadows. cuccinelli of course was the "new york times" reported at one point pressured by rudy guiliani to ask whether the dhs could seize voting machines, something they did not do. but it is clear the january 6 select committee is casting a wide net as part of their investigation. >> thanks so much. what has democrats, quote, frustrated and disappointed with their own party? stay with us.
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we are back with our politics lead. intentions in the democratic party boiling over today with dick durbin of illinois telling cnn his fellow democrats are frustrated and disappointed about their failure to get a key part of biden economic agenda passed this year and pointing a finger of blame at the one senator he says is holding it all up. let's bring in cnn's phil
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mattingly at the white house. give us a reality check. is this a setback or the end of build back better? and who exactly is durbin talking about? >> yeah, look. senator durbin is talking about senator manchin. i think everybody is at this point. i haven't talked to any democrat either on capitol hill or here at the white house who believes this is the end of things, that things are dead with the $1.75 trillion cornerstone of president biden's domestic agenda. i think there is a recognition this obviously won't get done this year. it hasn't been publicly announced yet but it will take a number of weeks further and probably will have to be fairly significant changes to what the president and democrats envisioned for the final proposal. even white house officials who are careful in how they talk about senator manchin have made clear they believe he wants to get to the finish line and get something done. the real question is can they construct something that satisfies both senator manchin and the rest of the democratic caucus? >> biden has been meeting privately with manchin in person, on the phone. however they can meet to try to
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get this bill over the finish line. now a spokes person says negotiations are very far apart. what happened? >> i think there are a range of issues. senator manchin to his credit has been very public with his issues about the proposal for several months. president biden and senator manchin have spoken a lot over the course of the last 11 months. in the last six or seven days they've had multiple conversations by phone where it has become abundantly clear senator manchin has significant issues with the proposal as it is laid out particularly one issue specifically and that is the child tax credit. in this proposal, it would extend the child tax credit which has driven down childhood proffer the significantly since it was put into place by the rescue plan. senator manchin thinks it is too large in terms of the fact it is extended one year. he wants it extended for a full ten years or pulled out entirely. that is a nonstarter for president biden and for democrats. how they reconcile that while keeping it within the
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$1.75 trillion top line is the biggest outstanding question right now. there are a series of issues they need to resolve. that is probably the biggest right now that white house officials and congressional democrats are working on. >> thanks so much. joining us to discuss, democratic congressman jones of new york a deputy whip for the congressional progressive caucus. let me start off by saying this appears to be what progressives had worried would happen if you went along to pass the bipartisan infrastructure bill that ultimately manchin would not be there to pass build back better. do you resent how this is playing out? do you feel played? >> i think the american people resent how it is playing out, jake. this is something that is so broadly popular across the ideological specter when you do polling. we are seeking to cut costs for the american people at a time when inflation has been rising. this is something that is going to continue to extend the middle class tax cut known as the child
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tax credit as phil just mentioned which has been cutting child poverty in half over the past year. this is common sense stuff, obviously fully paid for, and something i am hopeful the president will be able to fulfill his promise on when he promised progressives and the house democratic caucus at large that he would secure the 50 democratic votes required to get this over the hurdle that is the united states senate. >> cnn's manu raju just got with west virginia senator joe manchin and asked him about the criticism that he is demanding changes at the last minute. manchin's response is, quote, everybody has demanded changes in the last few weeks. is that true? >> no, it's not true. the fact is, 90% of this bill was preconferenced and preconferenced these days means senator manchin and senator sinema signed off on it. now i understand that the senator has consistently raised objections about, a, family leave. that is unfortunate because we are simply trying to catch up to
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the rest of the developed world. as of late he is raising objections he only recently began to raise after signing off on this as part of the 90% preconferenced. so you see someone continuing to move the goal post and i'm so hopeful and optimistic that we can get this done this month and we also need to do voting rights. >> president biden has been privately negotiating with manchin for months. it sounds like to a degree you blame president biden for this not getting over the hump given the fact that he gave you his word as a biden that he would get the 50 votes and doesn't seem to be able to do it. >> look, i think the president is able to do it. i just hope that he gets it done this month because the american people are hurting. folks are going to stop seeing those monthly expanded child tax credit checks stop next month if we don't do something about it right now. i don't think any of us want to be known as folks who doubled poverty right after we cut child poverty and, of course, now
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senator manchin is saying he supports the child tax credit, but is only going to vote for it if it is over ten years instead of one year. i would love to increase the size of this package if that is his proposition. >> the hold up appears to be the child tax credit as you note manchin says he does support it just not how it is written in the bill. is there any thought to removing the child tax credit from build back better and passing it as a stand alone bill and then continuing to work on build back better given the fact manchin says he would support that? >> i don't think there is any thought that that is going to happen and it is also something that doesn't need to happen. again, this was preconferenced. and so i'm hopeful that the president of the united states can fulfill the promise that he made and that the leadership in the senate will get this over the finish line as well. i mean, house democrats have been doing the lion's share of the work of building an economy that works for everybody. my goodness, would we like to
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see some help from the white house and the united states senate. >> how do you respond to the argument and some of it comes from democratic economists, that there has been so much money infused into the economy this year that that is why there is inflation at least partly and that is why i'm sure when you go home your constituents talk about how expensive everything is a the grocery store and the gas station. some people, including people like larry summers, former democratic white house economic adviser say that is because so much money has gone from the biden administration and the progressive congress into the economy. >> the fact is, it is well established and leading economists understand this. that as demand for goods increased, we saw a supply either stagnate in some instances or decrease at the same time and so that is why you see the prices increase.
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economists also say that the best way to deal with the crisis of inflation we're facing right now, and i do feel for struggling americans who are experiencing this, is to make sure that we cut costs, right? so putting money in the pockets of americans through extending the expanded child tax credit, making sure the costs of health care and housing go down, which is what the build back better act will do, talking about capping insulin at $35 a month. that is an extraordinary achievement among other things in this incredible bill like making child care affordable for literally every family in america. that is how we'll overcome the temporary crisis of inflation. that is what i want senator manchin to understand. >> democrats in the senate as you noted are considering switching focus and making one more push on voting rights legislation. that doesn't have the votes either it seems. we're about to enter a midterm year. do you think that democrats' failure to pass what you've promised from police reform to
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voting rights to build back better will be a reason if you lose your majorities in the house and senate? >> well, there is nothing as important as saving our democracy, which faces its greatest test since jim crow. we see that in the voter suppression that has been enacted in so many states particularly but not exclusively in the south. and so we've got to pass the john louis voting rights advancement act and the freedom to vote act. i'm proud to have co-authored provisions of both of those bills. time is running out and people who incited the insurrection at the capitol are gerrymandering their way back into power. my goodness i think most americans shudder to think what will happen if people like marjorie taylor greene and jim jordan are running the show. >> democratic congressman jones of new york, if i don't see you, merry christmas. thanks for joining us today. >> happy holidays. it is the defense's turn in the trial of jeffrey epstein's long time associate. the judge has already deliver one defeat. stay with us. which is a lot.
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in our national lead the defense of jeffrey epstein's former associate ghislain maxwell started today but in a potential blow to the socialite's strategy three of the potential defense witnesses will not be allowed to testify anonymously. maxwell faces a number of federal charges including sex trafficking. we'll go live outside the courthouse. what did we learn today about the defense strategy? this was the first day they tried to call witnesses. >> reporter: yes, that's right. today is the first day the defense is putting on their case and the strategy is to attack the credibility of the four
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accusers both looking at their financial motives as well as memory. they called four witnesses today. the most important for them a uc irvine professor who is a memory expert. she testified that even false memories can be vivid. that emotion is no guarantee that a memory is authentic, and she said even traumatic events, your memory of those events can be influenced by external factors like movies and it can cause them to be exaggerated and distorted. on cross examination the prosecutors tried to point to the defendant, excuse me, the witnesses testifying in multiple criminal trials and held up a book she had written called "witness for the defense" and asked if she had ever written a book called "impartial witness." the witness did agree on cross examination that witnesses and victims tend to remember traumatic events at their core. that was the most important for the defense today. they also called one of maxwell's former assistants who
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testified she never saw anything inappropriate in the six years she worked for her. >> who else do we expect to hear from? do we know if maxwell herself is expected to testify? >> reporter: no word from the defense on whether maxwell will take the stand. she does intend to call several character witnesses. those are the ones you mentioned before where the judge said she will not let them testify using sued nims something the defense wanted because they said some of the witnesses would not want the publicity that would be associated with testifying for maxwell. jake? >> thanks so much. let's take a closer look at this case now with a federal prosecutor for nearly a decade, specializing in white collar crime. the defense spent a lot of today trying to undermine the testimony of jeffrey epstein's alleged victims. could that be effective? >> well, it can be effective. it is often what the defense does when there is a case of identification and that is what
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it comes down to. i've had those cases. it can be in the case of violent crimes, more traditional violent crimes where, you know, a bank robbery or something, identification experts. it is often a hot topic of debate. it is what they have here. if the victims in their testimony is correct ms. maxwell is certainly guilty so they have to do that but it could back fire because i think everyone on the jury will be sympathetic to those witnesses. >> the jury also heard from a former assistant who said she never saw anything inappropriate. is that potentially a strong defense for her? >> i don't think so. those sorts of folks come out of the wood work all the time. in all sorts of cases where i didn't see anything that was going -- that was potentially criminal and what ends up happening the cross examination by the government is, well, did you know about this? did you know about that?
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they'll show them pieces of evidence and inevitably the person engaged in say child exploitation or some other crime did not of course let that person know about all sorts of details that are impossible to dispute. and it just shows the argument for the government is going to be this shows ms. maxwell knew what she was doing was wrong and that is why she hid it. >> the jury just finished listening to these horrific accounts of abuse from victims of jeffrey epstein. if you were in the position of having to defend ghislain maxwell who allegedly helped jeffrey epstein in these horrific crimes, what would your strategy be? >> wow. that's tough one. certainly they have to blame epstein. they have to make the jury blame him, portray her as somebody who was duped by epstein. and i think they have to portray her almost as an unwitting accomplice. the problem with that is there are victims who testify that she participated in the abuse of the underage victims so that is why
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they have to go after those vuk tvuk -- victims and their credibility which is difficult to do in a way that isn't going to make the jury hate you and why i imagine at some point there were plea negotiations occurring here. >> are you surprised jeffrey epstein allegedly did this with a lot of very wealthy, powerful men, are you surprised that we don't know would they are yet? >> i think the prosecution is probably trying to remove that element from this case. they want to make it about this particular defendant and what she did rather than focusing on details that are going to distract the jury from that evidence and potentially cause the jury you could imagine a juror really liking one of those famous or wealthy or important people and choosing to disbelieve the evidence. i think the prosecution is doing the right thing by keeping the focus on maxwell. you always have to remember as a prosecutor focus on the person
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who is the defendant in this case as opposed to all of the other evidence around it. >> that makes sense. if jeffrey epstein was a sexual trafficker of under age girls which he was, he did this for people. do you think the prosecution is going to bring cases forward or maybe even ghislain maxwell to flip or something so some of these abusers in addition to epstein and ghislain maxwell allegedly are punished? >> i think you're on the right track, jake, when you said flip her. they really want maxwell to flip t would take the testimony of someone like maxwell most likely for that to happen because thus far we haven't seen those charges and i would expect if they had sufficient evidence without maxwell's testimony, that some of those charges would have already been brought. >> all right. thank you so much. good to see you. coming up, bravery, devotion, now a medal of honor. actually three. hear the stories of the heroes given a spotlight at the white house, next. a healthy life.
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where's mom? she said she would be home in time for the show.
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don't worry, sweetie. she promised she'd be here for it. ooh! nice shot! thanks! glad we have xfinity, with wifi speed faster than a gig! me too! woah, look! mom is on tv! she's amazing! (cheers) xfinity brought us together, after all! power your whole home this holiday with wifi speeds faster than a gig. click, call, or visit a store today. sing 2 in our national lead today president biden presented the congressional medal of honor, the most prestigious decoration in the u.s. military, to three american heroes. two were presented posthumously the third joined by the families
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of the fallen soldiers. these recognitions were long deserved. >> good afternoon. he always believed this day would come even if she had to wait 16 years. when her little brother sergeant first class alwyn cashe got the credit many felt he deserved. >> no soldier is going to be left behind on his watch. >> reporter: but she would trade today a million times to redo october 17th, 2005. >> june, 2005, the last time i saw him, i told him, i need you to duck, don't be a hero, and come home. >> reporter: cashe had deployed to iraq before but this time his fighting vehicle hit a road side bomb. the car was engulfed in flames and soon so was cashe. he went back to the car again and again to pull out six of his men and an iraqi interpreter. does it ever get easier? >> when people say time heals
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all they have not walked in my shoes. no. it never gets easier. it gets a little -- you don't cry as long. it doesn't get easy. >> reporter: cashe was awarded the silver star but his men and sister always felt he earned the medal of honor. >> a warrior who literally walked through fire for his troops. >> reporter: a dream that came true. perhaps more special than the award is the company in the white house on this day. katy celiz is here for her husband >> i would ask him before every deployment, just please don't be a hero. just go and do your job and come back. he always told me he couldn't make that kind of promise. >> reporter: sergeant first class christopher cleeliz was o his second deployment. he put himself in the line of fire to protect a medevac helicopter. >> for him to step back and not
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deploy or even get out of the army was in a way abandoning his fellow soldiers and for him i don't think he could ever do that. >> attention orders. >> reporter: it is a common theme in this group. never abandon your fellow soldier because they would never abandon you. master sergeant earl plumlee had been in fire fights before during deployments around the world but never like this. >> usually you are not hip deep in suicide bombers, you know, next to the chow hall. we typically do it differently. >> reporter: on august 28th, 2013, suicide bombers attacked his base in afghanistan wearing afghan national army uniforms. plumlee moved toward the attack, armed at first only with a pistol. he withdrew only to advance again and again to stop the attack. >> i, you know, read about medal of honor stories throughout my career. >> reporter: you are one of those stories now. >> yeah and i don't know.
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i haven't wrapped my head around it. >> reporter: it was an incredible opportunity to speak with master sergeant earl plumlee and the families of the other two honorees. perhaps one of the most impressive parts of plumlee's story he came off deployment for the ceremony and will go back in just a few weeks. because he is special forces when i asked him where are you deploying to he said i can't tell you that. jake? >> where do we get such men and women. thank you so much. coming up, everyone from the white house to one of the world's largest banks warning about what one person described as, quote, the most dangerous weapon in the world. stay with us. # ♪ yes, show a little kindness ♪ ♪ just shine your light for everyone to see ♪ ♪ and if you try a little kindness ♪ at fidelity, your dedicated advisor will help you create a comprehensive wealth plan for your full financial picture. with the right balance of risk and reward. so you can enjoy more of...this. this is the planning effect.
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to talk about it. . welcome to "the lead." i'm jake tapper. new evidence the american people are not all that worried about covid even with the many unknowns of the omicron variant. plus house speaker nancy pelosi rejecting the idea of banning lawmakers from trading stocks. we'll talk to an ethics expert who said pelosi might as well have said let them eat cake. leading this hour a shocking revolution from the january 6 committee. republican congressman and trump loyalist jim jordan was part of the pressure campaign to urge vice president pence to prevent joe biden's win from being certified. jordan forwarded a text from a former defense department inspector general to then chief of staff mark meadows outlining an unproven legal theory pence could toss out electoral votes. this text means jordan could be targeted by the very committee
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that kevin mckacarthy wanted hi to join this year. the january 6 committee is charging forward with new interviews even as washington reels pr all of the new revelations. >> reporter: the house select committee investigating the insurrection is filling in the picture of how donald trump and his allies tried to overturn the 2020 election and pleas for him to try to stop the violence at the capitol on january 6th. >> did donald trump through action or inaction corruptly seek to obstruct or impede congress's official proceeding to count electoral votes? >> reporter: the committee focusing on the role of republican members of congress like representative jim jordan who forwarded a text to white house chief of staff mark meadows, outlining a legal strategy for then vice president mike pence to stop the certification of the electoral votes. >> it was a far more malicious
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effort to find ways to corrupt our democracy, to overturn the votes of the people. that to me is so scary. >> reporter: jordan is a well known attack dog for the former president and someone minority leader kevin mccarthy wanted to serve on the january 6th committee but ultimately house speaker nancy pelosi blocked him. here is why she denied his role on the committee back in july. >> i did not accept two of the five people who were appointed. they had made statements and taken actions that i think would impact the integrity of the committee. >> behind the cameras a long line of witnesses willing to talk. today cnn has confirmed officials with the georgia secretary of state's office, met with the panel for hours. and as the house referred meadows to the justice department, which is now deciding whether to charge him for refusing to testify, even