tv The Story With Martha Mac Callum FOX News December 21, 2021 12:00pm-1:00pm PST
crews so if one hospital fills up, we can transport patients to hospitals elsewhere. this week we'll see dozens of ambulances to new york and maine because covid is spreading rapidly to help transport patients. our doctors and nurses and hospital staff have gone above and beyond. the strain and the stress is real. i mean it, it's real. we'll have their backs though. we have to let them know we have their backs. finally, we're making sure that covid-19 no longer closes business or schools. last week, the federal court upheld our vaccination or test rule. employers with 100 or more employees have to protect their workers with the requirement
that they be vaccinated or tests each week or go home. these rules keep workers safe. that will help keep businesses open. the people are vaccinated, tested, they're murder less likely to get sick and much less likely to spread to others. customers are more likely to shop because they know it's a safe environment. i know vaccination requirement are unpopular for many. not even popular for those that are anxious to get them. my administration has put them in to save your lives and the lives of others. 400,000 americans died from covid this calendar year. almost all are unvaccinated. almost all were preventible. it's going to save thousands of american lives. must also keep our k-12 schools
open. the science is clear. it's overwhelming. we know how to keep our kids safe. k-12 schools should be open. that safety is increased if schools require all adults that work in the schools to get vaccinated. take the safety measure that the cdc is recommending including masking. i got congress to pass billions of dollars in school improvements. ventilation, social distancing. schools should be safer than ever from covid-19. just friday the cdc issued a test to stay guidelines. so schools can stay open and kids can stay in class even if a class made tests positive. covid-19 is scary but the science is clear. children are safe -- as safe in school as they are anyplace. assuming the appropriate
precautions have been taken. they've already been funded. let me close with this. i know you're tired. i mean this. i know you're frustrated. we all want this to be over. we're still in it. this is a critical moment. also we have more tools than ever before. we're ready. we'll get through this. we head in to the holidays, i want us all to keep the faith. i want to sincerely thank you for your perseverance, acts of kindness, love and sacrifice in the last two years. throughout our history, we're tested as a people and a nation through war and turmoil. whether we can get back to who we are. we've always endured because remember, there's no challenge too big for america.
i mean this from the bottom of my heart. no challenge. we have come through better and stronger because we stand together as the united states of america. that's what we have to keep doing today. we can do this together. i guarantee you, may god bless you all, may god protect our troops and happy holidays. god love you all. thank you. >> on testing, sir, you said we have to do better. public health officials said you need to surge rapid tests for this moment. is it a failure that you don't have tests for everyone if they need one right now? >> no, it's not. covid is spreading so rapidly. notice that it just happened almost overnight. just in the last month.
so no. i don't think anybody anticipated that this was going to be as rapidly-spreading as it did. so the question is we have a lot of people that have access to tests, order them, could have their insurance pay for them, et cetera. all of a sudden it was like everybody rushed to the counter. a big, big rush. i knew that was coming. what i tried to do is meet with the companies and use the defense production act to get a half a billion more tests and get them to their homes, get them on their shelves and in the store. that's what it's about. yes. >> what is your message to americans that are trying to get tested now and not able to get tested and wondering what took
so long to get testing? >> come on. >> i'm hearing that now, people trying to get tested for the holidays. >> what took so long, it didn't take long at all. what happened was that the omicron virus spread even more rapidly than anything thought. if i told you four weeks ago that this was spread on a day-to-day basis, spread by 50, 100%, 200%, you'd say biden, what are you drinking? that's what it did. we don't know what will happen from here. there's some evidence that in south africa a lot of this started that it's dropping off quickly, too. we don't know. i do know that we're not going to be in a position like i said -- remember, when had problem with masks and gowns and the like. i said i promise you, i got questions from some of you, why you still paying for the masks and gowns? why are you stockpiling this?
because we don't know. turns out we'll need them. >> there you reverse the travel ban now that omicron is here in the u.s.? >> i'm considering reversing that. i'm going to talk with my team. remember why i said we put the travel ban on. to see how much time we had to see what we needed here. we're past that now. its something being raised with me with the docs now. i'll have an answer for that soon. >> do you believe senator manchin kept his word to you and how do rebuild trust in your party to advance the legislation forward? >> i told you before -- you heard me say this before. some people think maybe i'm not irish because i don't hold a grudge. i want to get things done.
i still think there's a possibility of getting build back better done. i -- joe went on tv today -- i don't know if it's tv or not. so look, i'm not looking for -- let me say something. you saw what happened yesterday. all the talk about how my build back better plan was going to increase inflation and cause the debts and all this. what happened? goldman sachs said if we don't pass build back better we're in trouble. because it's going to grow the economy. without it, we're not going to grow. what happened? stock prices went way down. took a real dip. if you take a look, everybody thinks because i quoted be 17 nobel laureates saying this will help inflation. think about it in terms of
you're a hard working person and making $60,000. you're alone. you're a mom, on your own or making $80,000. mom and dad $90,000 like a lot of people do and worried about inflation. you should be. it's devastating for the working class and middle class folks. it hurts. where is most of the cost now? the cost is in gasoline even though i was able to bring it down 12 cents a gallon and will come down more. we talked about the food prices going up. look what is in build back better. child care. you can reduce child care up to 70%. that's the difference between 20 million going back in the work force if you pass it. we're talking about healthcare. insulin. since we got 200,000 kids with type 1 diabetes.
costs 10 cents and $10 to come up with a formula awhile ago. all right? you know what it is costing on average? $640 a month up to $1,000 a month. what do you do if you're a mom and dad working with minimum wage, busting your neck? you look at your kid. you know if you don't get a vaccine for them -- if you don't get that drug for them, if you don't get that -- be able to take that, what happens? likely go in a coma and maybe die. i don't want the kid's life at stake. you strip away if dignity of a parent looking at their child. i'm not joking about this. imagine being a parent, looking at their child and you can't afford -- you have no house to borrow against.
you have no savings. strong. all the things in that bill will reduce prices and cost for middle class and working class people. it's going to reduce their cost -- what is inflation? having to pay more than the money you have because things have gone up? bring down all of those costs, the cost of work from child care to child care tax credit. i'm not supposed to be having this press conference. >> mr. president, did senator manchin break his commitment to you when you announced the frame work? the white house said that all 50 senators were believed to be behind it. did senator manchin break his commitment to you? >> senator manchin and i will get something done. thank you.
>> president biden laying out his plan to combat the rise of the omicron variant. now the dominant variant in the u.s. accounting for 75% of new infections here. the big take-away? plans for 500 million free at-home rapid tests for americans that request them as long lines and wait times plague tests sites across the country. dr. brett giroir was a member of the white house covid task force and a former assistant hhs secretary. dr. giroir, good to have you here today to react to the president's remarks. a lot of people feeling very nervous this holiday season given the spread of omicron. people are second guessing their plans. things up in the air. you think the president struck the right tone? what is your reaction to his remarks? >> i'd give him a c minus on
this address. hey had some important messages. whether you've been infected before or had two vaccines, with omicron, it's important to be vaccinated and get the third dose. a previous infection and two doses is about 20% protective of getting covid. very important for that to happen. everything else is really i think a drop in the bucket. 500 million tests over how many months. is that going to be done? there's no triage who should get the tests? we should clearly get them to the most needed. at the end of the trump administration, we did 180 million free tests. the only reason why we're in such a problem right now is that the biden administration did not invest in testing between january and september. this just didn't hit us. remember, in september with delta, there were testing shortages and they failed to meet the mark to provide the
tests that people need. >> he did take a lot of questions from the press corps there about why it took so long to get this testing to the american people. so that's a good point there. yeah, go ahead. >> we projected by may or june, there should be a billion tests per month available. that was supported by academic institutions as well. what happened is the demand for tests fell off and neither the states or the federal government put billions in to the industry. this is documented by "the new york times," "the washington post." so there was no advancement. so instead of a billion tests, we have 400 million, which is why we're so behind. given the fact that we're behind that sending to it anybody that wants it is important. we should target the people that are vulnerable even with vaccines. those are the elderly. they're all on medicare. those with comorbid conditions. we'll have to target them until we get a billion or two billion
per month and this program makes more sense. >> he made a plea for people to get vaccinated. he talk about asking families to -- the unvaccinated, asking families to consider getting their children vaccinated. you've been a big proponent of therapeutics. i want to take a listen to dr. robert redfield. he was on air this morning and he had very interesting things to say about feiging omicron. let's take a listen. >> i was a part of the operation warp speed board to bring vaccines to the american public, a great sense of urgency. i don't see the same urgency of bringing the diagnostic tests to the american public. i don't see the urgency. i don't see the urgency in bringing the anti-virals to the marketplace. we need to really accelerate that sense of urgency. >> jacqui heinrich had an opportunity to ask about a
certain kind of therapeutic, a pill to fight omicron. the president said they would be looking into that. what is your take on that? >> so there is a lack of urgency. i want to be clear that vaccines need to be the foundation of our protection. that's why everybody needs them. you never hear the administration talk about mono clonal anti-bodies or the oral medicines. the one from merck has been at the fda for weeks. it can reduce hospitalizations by up to 50%. that needs to be authorized immediately and it needs to be part of our armorment. these types of pills will work against omicron, delta, all the variants. they're very important. they're not the solution but a very important added step. remember the tests? i would send tests to everybody that could be eligible for the pills. we want them tested immediately if they get sick and get the pills to them so they can reduce
their illness. there's no urgency. i'm seeing a repeat of march, april and may of 2020 except with a lot less urgency and a lot less aggressiveness. we put 648 emergency testing sites up in the last two months of our administration in addition to the 10,000 beforehand. there's nothing new here except a lack of urgency, a lack of aggressiveness. still villainizing people unvaccinated. we have to encourage our friends, colleagues, relatives to get vaccinated. don't villainize people. that's not the way to go. >> thanks, dr. girard. so doctor. what is your advice to people to keep their holiday plans,
get-togethers around the tree? we heard the president say you should do that as long as you're vaccinated. how do you think people should proceed this christmas? >> first of all, thanks for having me back. i think people can get together safely. this is not like the last holiday where we saw so many people get infected. there's certain things that need to be done. first of all, if everybody is vaccinated and if the high risk people are boosted, it's extraordinarily safe. if you have unvaccinated people, it does raise the risk. we know they'll be more likely to spread. you can lower risk by using these rapid tests and making sure everybody is tested. there are ways of doing things that we couldn't do a year or 1 1/2 years ago. we don't have to cancel holiday season, christmas, new year's, all of that this year. >> that's good to know. you've said our messaging on the power of vaccines to protect people from serious illness has gone wrong somewhere. what did you mean when you said that?
>> yeah, look, there's so much confusion about do the vaccines work, do they prevent infection, do they prevent spread. a lot of it is just been misinformation and also i feel like there's times when both from our federal government and from the press, there's just been not very clear forks. what we know -- certainly true before omicron and still now, is that if you're fully vaccinated and if you're boosted, you're less likely to get infected. if you're less likely to get infected, you're less likely to spread the virus. these vaccines are terrific. i agree with dr. giroir that the vaccines are the bedrock for getting us out of this pandemic. we should not talk down the vaccines or shouldn't underplay them and be straightforward with the american people about how good these vaccines are. >> good to know. i'm sure our audience will be happy to hear that we can still celebrate with friends and family. dr. jha, thanks for you're time.
merry christmas. >> thank you. >> president biden's approval on covid now at the lowest since taking office. according to an abc pool, as the virus resources, his economic agenda tanks and a majority of americans say they're hopeless about the future. how can the white house turn this around? tom bevan of real clear politics after this. as a professional bull-rider i'm used to taking chances. but when it comes to my insurance i don't. i use liberty mutual, they customize your car insurance, so you only pay for what you need. wooo, yeaa, woooooo and, by switching you could even save 665 dollars. hey tex, can someone else get a turn? yeah, hang on, i'm about to break my own record. yeah. only pay for what you need. ♪ liberty, liberty, liberty, liberty. ♪ wow... that's so nice! the gift of ancestry®... is a walk through your history.
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>> a bleak outlook according to where the u.s. is headed according to our fox news poll. 50% of voters say they're not hopeful about the country's future. 43% say they are. our republican pollster that works with a democrat on the survey says the numbers are unusual because american are more optimistic about the future. edward lawrence live with this. edward, sounds like a glum report before christmas. >> yeah, polster's know this. the while house knows the numbers are dipping. that's why we just heard about the president talking about vaccine mandates. he says he knows they're up popular but he tried to justify them. the speech was heavy on test. people have had issues with the long lines and getting tested and that plays in to the
president's opinion or poll rating. the increase to hospitals, the cases surge, he's mobilizing 1,000 doctors and paramedics to work in hospitals. the president says he's administration will be setting up new testing sites. in addition, the government is buying 500 million at-home tests and will distribute to anyone that wants them starting in january. finally he will have pop-up vaccination clinics to boost the vaccines. the said there's dire warnings for the unvaccinated. >> to all of the people that are unvaccinated, you have an obligation to yourselves, your families and quite frankly and to your country. get vaccinated now. it's free. it's convenient. i promise you, it saves lives. honest to good believe it's your patriotic duty. >> the president trying to turn
around the poll numbers which have been down on everything from covid to the economy to the immigration crisis. if you ask ten people, seven of them on the street will feel like 2021 was bad for the country. you have to go back to 2019 when the feeling was about a third of americans. 54% of registered voters are not hopeful. the president addressed these testing. he said the reason people can't get tests, the within we're seeing the long line is because they had a rush at the counter that they didn't know would be coming. but they knew other variants were coming. and christmas just around the corner, that is there every year. back to you. >> he got a lot of questions about that. edward, let's hope santa brings hope for christmas. >> thanks. >> let's bring in salina veto and tom bevan, president of real
clear politics. thanks for joining us today. tom, let's start with you. as i mentioned, it's a glum report just to hear this before christmas. so let's focus on independence. fox business conducted a poll asking this question. was 2020 a good year for independents? take a look. okay. 41% of independents said 2019 was a good year for them personally. this year that number is down to 24%. in 2019, 34% of independents said 2019 was a good year for the country, this year that number dropped to 16%. those numbers are depressing. tom, what would you say is the most to blame here? >> two things. obviously covid was another rough year. the administration struggled. remember, biden said by the fourth of july that basically mission accomplished and delta hit and the administration has been struggling ever since. the other issue is inflation. it is the single most important
issue on the minds of the public. soaring gas and food prices. you know, they're feeling it every day. the administration hasn't come up with a very good response to that issue. that's why his -- it's dragged down approval ratings across the board including on the economy. >> no doubt. a lot of these things affecting americans in their pocketbook. salina, you have to wonder how president biden feels especially given his approval numbers. let's take a look at this poll from npr and marist. they consider themselves to be independents. the approval rating a dismal 29%. those that disapprove again independents here, 66%. there's no way to dress up these numbers and make them look good. let me ask you react to that. >> so this is something that i have seen beginning in august when the war in afghanistan ended. the 13 soldiers died.
there was this sentiment among voters that that was handled poorly, but not only that, there was no sort of follow up. they looked at the president's handling of that of negligence. then you go to what happened at the border with the haitian immigrants. there were thousands and thousands crowded underneath an overpass. that added to that negligence. then their pocket books are being hit with the soaring gas prices. if you try to buy a used car, it's 31% higher than it was just a year ago let alone other necessities like gas and milk and eggs. not only do we have people not showing up for work, but we also have people that are working that are so impacted by inflation that they're having a hard time feeding their family. so there's negligence on that. i think in terms of covid, it's
a really interesting nuance in that people believe because it became so political that his treatment of covid is also negligent. that is what is causing his numbers to crater. whether i was driving across maryland or i was in colorado, i heard this from voters all across the country. and it's not -- they've lost their trust in his ability to turn that around. that is a dangerous place for this president. >> okay. salena and tom, we have to cut it short because of the president's remarks. but thanks for joining us today. >> thanks. >> moments against, an emotional president biden. >> imagine being a parent, looking at a child, you can't
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there's no money out of pocket and no up front fees. the newday two and a quarter refi. at these rates, you may never need to refinance again. >> i support joe manchin 120%. >> i do have mixed feelings. but he have west virginias in mind. >> nothing in that bill would help west virginiians. >> i'm praising him. >> that's what some west virginiians are saying about their senator, democrat joe manchin coming out against the president's $2 trillion social spending plan. some progressives say it's time for the president to take executive action. but moments ago, he said he's not giving up on the bill. >> did senator manchin break his commitment to you? >> senator manchin and i will
get something done. >> all right. you heard it here. senator tom cotton is standing by. first, to aishah hasnie live on capitol hill. aishah, high drama on the hill before christmas. >> hey there, anita. yes. that's right. president biden may will willing to work with senator joe manchin but progressives say they're fed up. they don't trust him anymore and that's why they wanted to connect, couple build back better with the bipartisan infrastructure bill. they've got plans of their own to fix this mess. so representative presley and bernie sanders are those pressing for a vote immediately on the senate floor so they can force moderate senators to get on the record with this bill. leader schumer is on board with a vote early in the new year. meantime, aoc taking this a step
further tweeting this. biden needs to lean on his executive authority now. he has been delaying and underutilizing it so far. under the pressure, the manchin camp has been quiet. it's gotten personal now. we've seen back and forth with the senator and the white house on who said what the, who said something publicly or privately. manchin has been blaming white house staff for allegedly leaking stories about him. >> they figure surely to god we can move one person. surely we can badger and beat one person up, surely get enough protesters to make that person uncomfortable enough. i'm from west virginia. i'm not from where they're from and they can beat the living crap out of people hand think they'll be submissive. >> this is happening with the backdrop of more and more democrats that are deciding
we're not going to seek re-election within 24 hours after manchin's big announcement sunday, three more democrats made that announcement, which brings the total now to about 23, only half that on the republican side. anita? >> thanks, aishah. great to see you. thank you. well, republican senator tom cotton of arkansas joins me now to talk about all of this. senator cotton, thanks so much for being with us today. so interesting to get your thoughts on the events of the last couple days that are still unfolding here. a lot of people asking if senator manchin will just change teams. let's listen to senator mitch mcconnell on this from just yesterday. >> he doesn't fit well over there. but that's a decision that he has to make. we certainly welcome him to join us if he were so inclined. >> so what do you think? could senator manchin join
republicans or more likely to be an independent? >> i would say joe manchin, we would welcome him with open arms in our party, a lot of democrats across the country over the years from states like west virginia that recognized they're not leaving the democratic party. the democratic party left them. you've seen that the last two days. joe manchin has been candid and up front. he's like the can you hear me now guy from the cell phone commercials. he's worried about inflation, about trillions of new debt, about giving amnesty to illegal immigrants or discouraging people from going out and working and the democrats thought he would roll over in the end. now they're criticizing him for not being a good democrat. i think it's rich when bernie sanders who wasn't a democrat at all until six years ago was criticizing joe manchin. so maybe it's time for senator manchin to come over and we well would welcome him with open
arms. >> the president said he would work something out with joe manchin. where do you think the white house went wrong with their dialogue? how could they have played this differently? >> well, anita, where they went wrong is not taking his concerns. his concerns are what he's heard all across west virginia, what i've heard in arkansas. families struggling to make ends meet. who are worried about adding trillions of new taxes and new deficit spending. families worried about affordable and reliable electricity in their homes at wintertime. this bill would make those concerns worse, it wouldn't solve them. joe biden just like bernie sanders and the rest of the democrats in washington all thought that if they just believed that joe manchin in the end would come along that he would. joe manchin as he has said is from west virginia where they're made of tough stuff. i commend him for standing up to these radical democrats and their $5 trillion tax and
spending bill. it's time to turn the page and tackle the concerns that americans have about inflation, crime, the southern border. that's where we should focus our efforts in the new year in congress. >> at the end of the press conference on covid, the president got peppered with questions about the build back better bill and joe manchin. he said he still hopes to pass the bill. quickly, what does the president need to do to get joe manchin on board and pass this bill? >> i don't know, anita. i hope that he can't get him back on board because it would be a victory for the american people not to pass trillions in new deficit spending. >> senator tom cotton, thanks so much. merry christmas to you. >> thank you, anita. merry christmas. >> we are on high alert for a verdict in two big cases. former officer kim potter on trial for manslaughter and ghislaine maxwell, jeffrey epstein's confidant on trial for sex trafficking.
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(sfx: pianist playing masterful duet) here we go here's the fun part >> we're waiting for verdicts in two business trials right now. kim potter said she mistakingly grabbed her gun instead of her taser. and ghislaine maxwell calls the claims against her rubbish. first to bryan llenas live in new york city. bryan? >> the jury has been deliberating eight hours.
they have sent two notes to the judge. the first note asking for the full transcripts of the testimonies made by three of the four accusers accusing ghislaine maxwell of facilitating the sexual abuse at the hands of jeffery epstein when they were 14. they claimed that maxwell participated in the abuse. the send note asked for the fbi deposition of one of the accusers identified as carolyn. they were denied that because it was not admitted in to evidence. epstein's former girlfriend faces six sex trafficking charges. she could spend the rest of her life in prison if found guilty. the trial was supposed to last six weeks. it lasted three. maxwell was called a sophisticated and dangerous predator. they relied on the testimony of two dozen witnesses including epstein's former pilots and house manager who said that
ghislaine maxwell's was epstein's number 2 and the lady of the house. this hinges on the testimony made by the two accusers identify as jane and carolyn. they said they were 14 years old when maxwell recruited them to perform sexual acts on epstein. they claimed that epstein participated in orgies with them. the defense says maxwell was made a scapegoat for epstein's crimes after he killed himself. in 2019. they said she had no knowledge of this abuse and poking holes in inconsistisies in the stories made by accuser. they had a memory expert that testified in the case talking about how memory overtime can be manipulated especially in situations when it come to trauma. we don't know when they will come out, but we do know that court on the 23rd, 24th and 25th won't be in session because of
the holiday and this jury has worked through lunch. anita? >> thanks, bryan llenas. let's bring in jonathan turley and brian claypool. great to have you with us today. two big trials. a lot to discuss. professor turley, let's talk with the ghislaine maxwell trial. the prosecution has painted a picture of her as a dangerous predator that recruited and groomed underage girls to be sexually exploited epstein. but she says she's innocent. how did each side do? >> well, the defense had a very difficult case to bring here. they couldn't just put maxwell on the stand and have her rebut these type of allegations. very high risk. but i thought the prosecution
carried the day in the end. i think they presented a compelling case against maxwell. she didn't come across as this vulnerable, even likable figure. she came across as an enabler of horrific acts. that's going to be hard to overcome. that's why i think that the prosecution may have carried the day. >> all right. brian, jeffery epstein had a lot of famous friends. bill clinton flew on his plane many times. there's pictures of him with former president trump, bill gates was an acquaintance and so was prince andrew. so a lot of people are watching this trial. if maxwell is convicted, she could face life in prison. will that satisfy those that say they were abused by jeffery epstein? what do you think? >> well, anita, i represented over 100 victims of child sexual
a because over the year. one of the most compelling evidence is when a victim takes the stand. in this case you had several victims take the stand. they talked about being molested, abused, exploited. why is that important? i think during the trials lawyers for maxwell should have changed their game plan. she should have testified. i think maxwell's failure to testify, to get up on that stand and tell that jury no, i wasn't in that room when that happened. i didn't observe epstein engage in a sexual act with these minors. by the way, i was a victim as well of epstein. he was a predator against me. because that's her defense. the only evidence you are have the victims. lawyers, when they talk about these things, it's not evidence.
when they say maxwell was a victim, too. she's a scapegoat. there's no evidence of that whatsoever. so her failure to testify i believe will result in either a guilty verdict or a hung jury at best. >> okay. perhaps a missed opportunity by the defense. i want to turn to the trial of kim potter, happening now in minneapolis. it's a city that has been through a lot. probably an understatement. jonathan, jury now has the case. her attorney said she made a mistake. she meant to tase dante right. she broke down and was very emotional. let's listen to that testimony. >> you're focused on what the you had done. you just killed somebody. >> i'm sorry it happened. i'm sorry. >> you knew the deadly force was unreasonable and unwarranted in
this circumstance. >> i didn't want to hurt anybody. >> you don't want to hurt anybody. >> that is so hard to watch. how do you think her testimony played with the jury, jonathan? >> i think it was very effective. i was very critical of the prosecutor's approach to that examination. i think she lost ground with the jury. you know, it's a very difficult position for a prosecutor to be in. you have a witness that is disassembling on the stand. her robotic and clinical examination, no sense of empathy, no reaction to the crime i think probably alienated the jury to a degree. so it will be interesting how they come out of this. this is the ultimate jury question. the key element here is that you have to consciously disregard the harm. that is -- this wasn't a case that was overcharged.
this is the right charge. doesn't mean that she's guilty. a jury has to decide this was not just a mistake. she had a conscious appreciation of the harm and disregarded it. that will be difficult. so in this case i actually think there's a greater chance for a hung jury or even an acquittal as the jury struggles with that element. >> all right. jonathan turley and brian claypool. brian, i apologize i didn't get you in. we're short on time today. see you again. merry christmas. celebrate now and you may grieve later. that is the dire warning issued by the world health organization urging people across the globe to cancel their holiday gatherings amid the omicron surge. alex hogan has more on the worldwide reaction to the new strain just days away from christmas. hi, alex. >> hi, anita. omicron is stealing the show as
countries around the world are needing to force these cancellations for the second holiday season. forget about having a holiday party. the dutch can only host two people in their home. in germany, the unvaccinated can only gather with up to two people in general if they have not received their vaccine. the country is also contemplating shuttering all club and selling new year's eve fireworks is banned. in denmark, cinema attractions are closed. scotland, outdoor groups are capped and spending events will be spectator free. france and spain won't back a new lockdown. austria just lifted their own. they report the lowest covid-19 cases in two months. back on u.s. soil, the omicron variant will now count for more than 75% of cases in the u.s.
the who has asked people to cancel their plans handing out some dark guidance as you mentioned arguing it's better to cancel now rather than celebrate and grieve. here in the u.k., queen elizabeth changed her holiday plans. the u.k. government has not rolled out new restrictions but major celebrations here across the city are now off the table. the government has also today announced that it will give out grants to any businesses that apply to the hospitality industry. they can receive up to $8,000 to ease the pain that we'll see the financial burden and what is likely to be another difficult winter ahead. anita? >> difficult indeed. alex hogan, live in london. thanks for that report. well, covid resurgence is upending america's favorite past
times. the national hockey league the first to suspend their season. announcing a pause for several games. the nba and the nfl has postponed some games as both deal with a record spike in cases among player. jim gray is a sports caster and fox news sports analyst and the host of the show "let's go with tom brady and larry fitzgerald." it's great to see you. haven't seen you in awhile. thanks for coming on. >> great to see you, anita. happy holidays. >> part of me can't believe we're still talking about this, sports teams suspending games again. here we are again. you've been supportive with different leagues spending games in seasons over covid. is i'll still the right thing to do? >> well, i think we have to judge just exactly where we are with the virus and the nhl, let me bring you this news and it's not happy news, they're not going to participate or have their players participate in the
olympics in beijing in february. they were expected to go. an announcement is expected tomorrow by the nhl and the player's association. they feel it's going to impact their season. right now their season is on pause through christmas with stricter protocols going in till january 1. so not going to beijing a huge blow for a lot of the players that wanted to play. >> that's breaking news there. the nhl not going to the olympics. leave it to you to bring us the breaking news. the nfl is postponing games after 23 cleveland browns players tested positive with covid or within close contact with infected persons. the nba also postponing games due to similar issues. rafael nadal testing positive. seems like the sports world is going to take a pause and wait and see what happens with omicron just putting 2022 on hold. >> i think that like you said, everybody has to see where this goes.
so many of the players, in the national football league testing positive, are asymptomatic. they're changing their protocols and will only test people that now have symptoms of covid. by doing that, they hope that those folks will not be in the building if you have the symptoms. they'll test them. if they turn out positive, they have to go through the necessary quarantines. the asymptomatic players may not know so they're going to play and have all of these games. their feeling is if all of these guys are sick, they will not be transmitting it out on the field since there's no documented proof that any of these guys have gotten sick during a football game. each of the leagues is taking a difference stance. when you're indoors, it's a different circumstance and you have so few players. there's over 100 players in the nba that have tested positive. it's more and more difficult to continue to play the games and
they've had some postponements and cancellations. so in the national football league, they're playing a game every day. it's a moving target. >> thanks, jim. hope for sports next year. merry christmas. that's "the story" of december 21. we'll see you back here tomorrow at 3:00. "your world" starts right now. >> i know you're tired. i mean this. i know you're frustrated. we all want this to be over. we're still in it. this is a critical moment. we're ready. we'll get through this. >> neil: all right. we might get through this but there's going to be a lot of testing going on in the meantime. the president committing to half a billion test kits to help americans figure out whether they have got