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tv   CNN Newsroom  CNN  December 25, 2013 10:00am-11:01am PST

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i appreciate your company on this christmas day. if you're celebrating, our best wishes go out to you it cnn wishes go out to you it cnn newsroom starts right now. -- captions by vitac -- right now, merry christmas messages from across the globe. president obama and the first lady among the world leaders sending their best wishes. we'll tell you what they are saying and what's being left out. and u.p.s. is apologizing for a christmas nightmare. presents sitting in warehouses instead of under christmas trees. they're basically saying you sent too many gifts. and he's the man that senators turn to for advice and they got an earful from him during the government shutdown. we'll introduce you to senate chaplain barry black. hi there and merry
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christmas. i'm brianna keelner washington. wolf blitzer is off today. a merry christmas message from the president. he offered a heartfelt thanks to the troops overseas but also offered this nugget. >> here's the good news. for many of our troops and newest veterans, this might be the first time in years they've been with their families on christmas. in fact, with the iraq war over and the transition in afghanistan, fewer of our men and women in uniform are deployed in harm's way than at any time in the last decade. >> and that's something that we all can be thankful for and with more and more of our troops back here at home, now it's our turn to serve. it's our turn to step up and show our gratitude for the military families who have given us so much. >> our athena jones is in honolulu, hawaii, working very hard on this holiday where the obamas are on vacation. maybe not surprising president obama didn't mention health care in his christmas message, but that's certainly something
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that's top of mind for him right now. >> reporter: it certainly is, merry christmas, brianna. the white house and administration overall has been touting the high traffic they've seen not just on, the federal exchange but also on state exchanges all across the country in the last several days as a lot of folks scramble to sign up for coverage starting january 1st. i should mention one more thing. the administration wants to make sure that folks who try to sign up and didn't succeed don't get too worried. let me read for you a statement put up on i believe you have it there. sometimes despite your best efforts you might have run into delays caused by heavy traffic to maintenance periods or other issues that prevented you from finishing the process on time. if this happened to you, don't worry. we may still be able to help you get covered as soon as january 1st. so what that means is that customer service representatives are going to be available starting tomorrow, not today because the call center is closed but starting tomorrow,
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they'll be able to help people finish the enrollment process if they started a couple days ago and got hung up. they're hoping they can help a lot of people finish so they can have health care coverage starting january 1st. >> is this something that everyone in all 50 states looking to meet that deadline will have access to? >> well, this is an interesting point you bring up here because different states have different deadlines. you have the federal deadline for the federal exchange but 14 states including the district of columbia have their own deadlines. some have extended them to friday, december 27th. others have a deadline of tuesday, december 31st. in washington state, folks who may have had problems signing on, they're going to have till january 15th to sign up for coverage that's going to be retroactive to january 1st. it's all going to depend where you live. people will need to focus on their own state call and talk to their state's exchanges.
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>> athena, a very special mallika lee key ma ca. it's a vacation for the president but i know you've been putting in long hours in beautiful hawaii. thank you, athena. over in the uk, queen elizabeth gave her traditional christmas greeting to british people and those celebrating around the world. she talked about the newest member of the royal family, 5-month-old prince george. >> he's a little larger this christmas. as many of will know, the arrival of a baby gives everyone the chance to contemplate the future with renewed happiness and hope. for the new parents, life will never be quite the same again. as with all who are christened, george was baptized into a
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joyful faith of christian duty and service. for christians as for all people of faith, are reflection, meditation and prayer help us to renew ourselves in god's love. as we strive daily to become better people. >> now new parents prince william and duchess catherine attended a christmas church service today without little george because evenly princes might make noise in church, right? the royal family gathered for a feast at the queen's country retreat in sandingham, england. and shortly after the message aired, edward snowden deliver add alternative christmas message from moscow on london's channel 4. he urged people to rally against kens mass government surveillance. here's what he said. >> the conversation occurring today will determine the amount of trust we can place both in the technology that surrounds us and the government that
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regulates it. together, we can find a better balance, end mass surveillance and remind the government that if it really wants to know how we feel, asking is always cheaper than spying. for everyone out there listening, thank you and merry christmas. >> okay. let's bring in our foreign affairs reporterer ellise labott. first off, elyse, why did he pick london's channel 4 and also it strikes me as kind of odd that edward snowden is giving a holiday message. >> well, that's right. channel 4 always looks for some kind of alternative message as you said. sometimes it's goofy. marge simpson or ali g have done it. often it's controversial. mahmoud ahmadinejad the former president of iran has done it before. channel 4 said that edward snowden's decision to reveal the extent of these surveillance
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programs has been one of the most significant events fst year and in fact, british security services for their cooperation with the united states also got a lot of heat. and he's kind of rallying not just the british people but obviously the world who's watching to have a dialogue about these mass surveillance programs going on not just in the u.s. but around the world. let's take a listen. >> a child born today will grow up with no conception of privacy at all. he'll never know what it means to have a private moment to themselves an unreported un andlized thought. and that's a problem because privacy matters. privacy is what allows us to determine who we are and who we want to be. >> well, so brianna, it's not clearly as uplifting a message as the queen gave but one he thought was important to talk about. i might add that here in this country, even "time" magazine, he was one of the runner-ups for
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person of the year. so obviously, what he did has a lot of profound consequences for the dialogue in this country and around the world about the extent that their governments are watching us. >> it certainly does elyse. when edward snowden talks, people do listen to him, but i suspect that when you're looking at these holiday messages, his is probably the only one that mentions george orwell's novel "1984" don't you think? >> yeah but he said george orwell and this big brother watching us, he said that's nothing compared to what's happening today. so some of it was a little hyperbole. that a child would never have a private thought. i'm not necessarilily sure that's true but clearly he's trying to provoke. he started from just leaking this information and giving it to journalists to now being a provocateur, speaking out and trying to be a voice in this debate over the importance of surveillance versus privacy issues. elise labott, thanks so much.
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fascinating and happy holiday to you, my friend. >> you, too. the taliban claimed responsibility for this morning's attack on the u.s. embassy in is afghanistan's capital. two rounds hit the compound in kabul. no one was hurt. the attack comes at a crucial point for u.s. relations with afghanistan. the two countries are right now working on a security deal to define the u.s. military presence there in afghanistan after 2012 when the nato-led force is scheduled to leave. 50 u.s. marines are spending christmas on stand by in case more evacuations are needed in south sudan. the marines were deployed to nearby uganda. so far almost 400 americans have been evacuated after violence broke out in the region. let's bring ing inpentagon correspondent barb barb star to talk more about this. barbara, what are you hearing? are these marines in uganda on call for more american evacuations? does it seem like they might go into south sudan or is this very much a just in case? >> i think on call probably hits
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the mark, brianna. they have moved the 50 marines as close as they can to south sudan so if there also a request, an order from the state department to evacuate americans,ed that be the trigger. then the marines would go in. they can do two things there. they can evacuate americans and at the same time, they can provide additional security and reinforcement for the u.s. embassy in south sudan. right now, nothing else has happened. everything is just sort of status quo for those marines. but there's very much a specter here of wanting to be ready, part of the hangover, the shadow, if you will, of what happened in benghazi libya when a u.s. military forces were not nearby to help out americans in peril. and, of course, really part of it about what happened on saturday when rebels fired at three u.s. aircraft trying to evacuate americans and four navy s.e.a.l.s got badly wounded. this time if they have to go
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income, they will go in very ready for whatever happens. >> that's right. one of those navy s.e.a.l.s was wounded particularly badly, very critical condition. do you have any word on what you're hearing about that marine's medical condition? >> we hopefully have very good word about that navy s.e.a.l. he today we are told, finally is being transferred from nairobi, kenya, where he's undergone several surgeries for his injuries. and is going by military air medical evacuation plane back to the military hospital at landstuhl, germany, which, of course, has treated thousands of wounded from the wars in afghanistan and iraq over the years. his other three buddies were already transferred there a couple of days ago, but this one navy s.e.a.l. has had a very rough time of it. >> so do you read that as pretty good, barbara? because when he stayed in nairobi and the others went to germany you got a sense of how touch and go things were. do we take this as a really good sign he's able to be
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transported? >> we are told his surgical team, a combination of expert kenyan doctors including avascular surgeon trained here in the united states and united states medical military advisors have been able to ensure that he is able to be transferred, that he can endure that long flight. but brianna, as you and i have chatted make no mistake, what happened on saturday is quite serious. three u.s. military aircraft full of bullet holes, four wounded troops bleeding out in the back. and those aircraft flew 500 miles in those conditions to take them back to uganda and then very quickly put them on another plane that was able to fly all the way to kenya. this is a story i don't think we have heard the full story of the heroic efforts to save these four navy s.e.a.l.s. >> it is an amazing story. barbara starr, we'll be looking for more details for you in the coming days.
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coming up, christmas presents left in the warehouse? the people at u.p.s. are apologizing today for fight biting off more than they can chew. we have that next. when my son was born, i remember, you know, picking him up and holding him against me. it wasn't just about me anymore. i had to quit. [ male announcer ] along with support, chantix (varenicline) is proven to help people quit smoking. it reduces the urge to smoke. chantix didn't have nicotine in it, and that was important to me. [ male announcer ] some people had changes in behavior, thinking or mood, hostility, agitation, depressed mood and suicidal thoughts or actions while taking or after stopping chantix. if you notice any of these, stop chantix and call your doctor right away. tell your doctor about any history of mental health problems, which could get worse while taking chantix. don't take chantix if you've had a serious allergic or skin reaction to it. if you develop these, stop chantix and see your doctor right away, as some could be life threatening. tell your doctor if you have a history of heart or blood vessel problems, or if you develop new or worse symptoms. get medical help right away if you have symptoms of a heart attack or stroke. use caution when driving or operating machinery. common side effects include nausea, trouble sleeping
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picking up some of those forever stamps when the post office reopens tomorrow because next month, the price of stamps is going up again, this time by 3 cents. on january 26th, it will be costing you 49 cents just to send a standard letter. 34 cents for a postcard and by the way, the post office lost $5 billion last year. well, grandma may not be getting a thank you call from the grandkids today because the sweater she sent for suzi or the baseball ball glove for bobby may not have made it in time for christmas in she sent it by u.p.s. margaret connly joins me from new york. when a company releases a statement saying we're terribly sorry, that's never good. what happened here? >> brianna, they're backlogged and delivers may not make it in time. u.p.s. did say they're sorry. here's nor from their statement. u.p.s. is experiencing heavy holiday volume and making every effort to get packages to their destination. however the volume of air packages in our system exceeded
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the capacity of our network immediately preceding christmas so shipments were delayed. to give you a sense of how many packages u.p.s. handled they projected to deliver over 132 millioning abouts just last week. that's their peak week. the delays will impact at least that many consumers and here are how some of them are reacting >> i can't tell you how many countless hours we have spent on the phone dealing with this issue with people in memphis. and they're still blaming it on the ice storm, which was 2 1/2 weeks ago. it's terribly disappointing. we ordered they things december 1st. they can't find them because there's a thousand packages on pallets in there and they can't find our package. >> we got to the front of the line after wait aghour. they said it hasn't been processed yet. >> it's been here since. >> cnn spoke with a u.p.s. spokes pern said the period between thanksgiving and christmas was short they are
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year. she also said more people are shopping online. u.p.s. did consider doing deliveries today on christmas day but decided to not to have to ask drivers to come in and work on the holiday. >> oh, my goodness. is there anything people can do besides just wait? >> aside from giving out ious, watch for some companies offering help. amazon alerted customers to what they say is the "failure of the u.p.s. transportation network," and offering to refund some shipping charges and give out gift cards. in the meantime try to enjoy and know u.p.s. workers will be out first thing tomorrow morning thursday making deliveries. >> margaret, you know, if you did use u.p.s., maybe you september late, you can use that as an excuse at this point i suppose. it wasn't my fault you know? >> that's right. it prolongs the holiday, too. add an extra day. >> i like you're finding the silver lining in this. that's fantastic. you have a very merry christmas. thank you. >> you too. you know it's a holiday
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ridgeal for many children, getting the photo snapped with santa. at a los angeles mall, a special santa claus is the main attraction. some parents call ahead to make sure that this santa is working before they bring their kids to the mall. kyung lah is tracking the story in los angeles. >> heart of every mall at christmas, elves, cameras, crying babies. >> hohoho. >> all to see the obligatory mall santa but it's a rare sort of santa at the crenshaw plaza in south los angeles. >> we came to see the black santa. >> he draws crowds of preschoolers and their patient parents. >> merry christmas. >> just like every santa in any mall america. >> what you want for christmas? >> iphone. >> the pictures are characteristically christmas. at the same time, they're not. >> they feel good about themselves by seeing someone also that looks like them. when i was little, there there were none of those things. there was nos black santa in
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chicago in 1953. >> so it's important for them to see this? >> yes, it is. >> turn on the tv this christmas, all you see is one shade of santa. like most benevolent characters american children grow up seeing. >> the only important thing is to make the children happy. >> the good guy is white. but not at this mall. other santas speak spanish. >> feliz navidad. >> and for the last nine holiday seasons, 77-year-old has greeted the crowd plopping toddlers on his lap whose parents want her snapshot with st. nick to mean more than just a commercial card. >> kids don't see the no color. i don't think so. i didn't ceclor when i was little. you only ceclor when you get older. >> nearly all the shoppers in this mall are african-american or latino. there are only a handful of these santas in the entire country. >> hey, buddy. >> that's why santa himself has
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a wish this christmas. >> the malls next year will have a few ethnic santa clauss in all cultures. >> dreaming of a white christmas and one in many other shades. >> hi, sweetie. >> kyung lah, cnn, los angeles. >> president obama looking to get back on track. he turn things around in 2014 and get past his 41% approval rating? we'll take a look into the future next. ♪ how do you explain the feeling of this place? of pulling close the things you love. of days that crash headlong into night. and nights that say nothing but yes. you don't explain it. you just experience it. los cabos. live it to believe it.
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to help secure retirements and protect financial futures. to help communities recover and rebuild. for companies going from garage to global. on the ground, in the air, even into space. we repaid every dollar america lent us. and gave america back a profit. we're here to keep our promises. to help you realize a better tomorrow. from the families of aig, happy holidays.
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of at this time last year, we were looking ahead to president obama's second inauguration and now we are looking at whether he can regain that momentum heading into 2014. senior political analyst ron brownstein here to break this down with us. ron, let's with obamacare. that's obviously top of mind right now. this has been real trouble 0 for president obama. does the program get stronger or perhaps more importantly do perceptions of the program get stronger or will this continue to drag down the white house? >> first of all, innerry christmas to you and everyone. i mean, this i think is the
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critical question. obamacare was the most important addition to the social safety net since medicare and medicaid in 1965. when the president won re-election, even john boehner seem seemed to be hypotheticaling the debate was essentially over and it was entrenched as the law of the land to use his words. but a year later after really an incredible procession of difficulties that they're only now beginning to turn around, it's an open question again whether obamacare can survive beyond his presidency. i think the critical issue for him next year and in these last three years is can he build enough of a constituency for this program it will in fact be difficult to undo even if republicans win unified control of the congress and presidency in 2016. the key is signing up as many people as they can and showing that this can work to both expand coverage and be something that the medical establishment itself wants to preserve. i think this is by far the big question facing the remainder of his term. >> so you said that, ron, even if republicans were to gain
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control of the senate in addition to the house which they already control. let's look at the midterms, at 2014. do you think we kind of keep a status quo or do you think there's a real chance that republicans could win the senate? >> there's a real chance the republicans could inwith the senate for a variety of reasons. first of all, six years in is historically the midterm of a second term presidency is historically difficult for the president's party. second, we're living through this enormous divergence between the presidential year and the off year in terms of which party it benefits. the democratic coalition is so heavily dependent on young people and minorities who vote much less frequently in the midterm. the midterm electorate is older and whiter at a time when older whites are leading toward republicans. if you look at the actual battlefield, the senate, the key senate seats in play tend to be in red states that are not heavily diverse or are older electorates tough for democrats, places like arkansas, alaska, south dakota.
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west virginia, all of montana, all of these are going to be very difficult battlefields with the president's approval rating where it is today. >> one of the big political stories this year could be hillary clinton. she has said that she'll announce this year if she's going to be in it for 2016. what do you expect her to do? also, i think knowing a lot of people just assume oh, she's going to run. we should also consider if president obama can't turn things around here, that could weigh on her decision, right? >> it could weigh on her prospects certainly. the history is that the assessment of the outgoing president matters more than people think. if you look at in the modern era, ves high correlation between views of the outgoing president in '88 for example, views about reagan in 2000, views about clinton had a lot of effect how people voted in the election to succeed them. if obama cannot recover during these remaining years and ends up his presidency with an approval rating somewhere in the low 40s, that will be a weight on hillary clinton or any other democrat. having said that, i think most
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people believe as long as she's healthy, she's going to run. she is as commanding a frontrunner as we have seen. no obvious line of argument against her from the center of the party. if you're going to run against her, you would probably have to make a generational argument like be hart did against hon dale in 1948 or maybe a populist argument from the left edge of the democratic coalition. either way, she is a strong candidate for the nomination and potentially a very strong nominee for the general election, as well. >> yeah, i can't imagine she's not going to run when you look where she is in the polls. but certainly that would be an upset story if she weren't going to. ron brownstein, thanks so much. happy holidays to you. >> thank you. you too. ahead on "newsroom," tens of thousands of people screaming as pope francis appeared on the balcony there above st. peter's square. the pope's popularity may continue to soar, but he is
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keeping his christmas message pretty down to earth. ♪ i want to spread a little love this year ♪ [ male announcer ] this december, experience the gift of unsurpassed craftsmanship
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>> some beautiful and these are historic images from the vatican. this was pope francis presiding over his first christmas celebration in his new role. and while the ceremonies involved a lot of pomp and circumstance, erin mclaughlin shows us the pope kept his christmas message simple and to the point. >> as you can see, they're streaming into st. peter's square. people from all over the world pilgrims and atheists, men, women and children of a multitude of religions flooding the scare to hear what pope francis has to say to the world on christmas day. >> translator: god is peace. let us ask him to help us to be peacemakers each day. >> what did you think of the pope's message? >> i think it was wonderful. it was beautiful.
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very touching. and i felt even like crying. he's very humble person. >> i really don't know if humanity will listen to him. but he -- he's strong to say this. >> reporter: his message delivered in italian and even though not everyone here understands exactly what he is saying, they're here to see him and experience history. >> it was wonderful to be in such a large crowd. people were nice. we were trying to communicate with each other but we were all from many different countries. people were happy to be here and calm about it. >> it was a great moment just to see him speak to all the people. it's a lovely day here in rome. a great experience. >> reporter: his message to the world one of peace. he asked for prayers for the victims of conflict in places like syria and the south sudan. it was a message that seemed to resonate here in the square.
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the excitement and energy was palpable. an illustration of the power of pope francis. erin mclaughlin, cnn, the vatican. >> and let's take a look at other christmas celebrations around the world. thousands of christians packed the town of bethlehem in the west bank for christmas celebrations. a top roman catholic leader in the holy land said the message of christmas is peace, love, and brotherhood. the church of nativity is the birthplace of jesus. in tacloban, church goers remembered those lost to lant month's deadly hurricane. they relied on candlelight because electricity is not fully restored. in australia, revelers celebrating in the is surf on the sand. santa parked those reindeer and he padded around in flip-flops to deliver gifts and good cheer. i think he was holding a beer
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there actually. in china, christmas is not so much a religious holiday as it is a wacky excuse to celebrate. kind of like st. patrick's day here in the u.s. but china's government does take pride in its massive exports of toy oz saying without its cheap products, americans couldn't enjoy the piles of gifts unite the tree. coming up, heat waves, hurricanes and tornadoes like this one. we'll be counting down the top ten weather events of 2013. what you wear to bed is your business. so, if you're sleeping in your contact lenses, ask about the air optix® contacts so breathable they're approved for up to 30 nights of continuous wear. serious eye problems may occur. ask your doctor and visit for safety information and a free one-month trial.
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i don't know about where you are, but christmas day is chilly and cold here in the mid-atlantic and parts of the northeast and midwest. thousands of people are actually without power. they're spending christmas in the dark. in michigan, crews are working around the clock. they are trying to restore power after that recent ice storm that hammered some areas. so let's bring in jennifer grey in the cnn weather center in atlanta. it's a white christmas but not a warm christmas for a lot of people. >> yeah, hundreds of thousands without power. good news is no additional ice is falling. this is all leftover from the wicked ice storm we saw over the weekend. we are seeing though snow and we're seeing snow in place like grand rapids and that's all pulling into places like upstate new york, and even into northern maine. new hampshire and vermont. this is just one of the many pictures that were eninto cnn. this is from sarah hadley in
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lansing, michigan. you can see the ice hanging on the branches. it just weighs them down and it doesn't take much forever the branchs to fall. the power lines to go down and so that's why we're seeing a lot of power outages in that part of the country. as for snowfall during the next 48 hours, waer going to see possible 1 to 3 inches in detroit, syracuse could pick up 2 to 4 and 1 to 3 inches in vermont, new hampshire, even on into maine. most of the country though enjoying a very tranquil christmas. sunny and mild across the deep south. we are going to see a couple of showers in south texas but that lake-effect snow is really the only hangup we are seeing. so a lot of folks waking up to a white christmas. we also have temperatures staying in the 30s and 40s across the midwest. 44 in denver today. >> all right. i am jealous of you. it looks nice and sunny down there. a little cool here in d.c. >> it's chilly in atlanta but it's beautiful. >> have a happy holiday. >> you, too.
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a thousand year flood, a tornado with winds of almost 300 miles an hour and a typhoon that destroyed millions of homes. mind boggling numbers to go with some of the extreme weather stories we've covered this year. chad meyers counts down the top ten. >> 2013 was quite a year weatherwise. let's go to the top ten weather stories right now. we'll start at number ten in mexico. twin hurricanes hitting that country, one from the gulf of mexico, the other from the pacific. five billion in damage, more than 100 people killed in flooding. to south dakota, 12 days into autumn. we're looking at four feet of snow, 70-mile-per-hour winds. 20,000 cattle were killed in this storm as ranchers were caught off guard. now to the northeast. the nor'easter a big storm back in february. 3-mile-per-hour winds at one point, but the pressure was equal to a category 2 hurricane.
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now to arizona where the wildfires struck. lightning strike north of phoenix created this wildfire. it grew to 6,000 acres. the granite mountain hotshots were sent in, the wind shifted directions on them and blew the fire right back at those firefighters. 19 died that day. that's the largest loss of life from firefighters since 9/11. to east asia right here. big dome of high pressure, very populated area here, shanghai into shamanto japan, 106 degrees. it's never been that hot. no city in japan had ever been that how the as long as they were keeping records. now to oklahoma city. a 210-mile-per-hour tornado an ef-5 headed to moore, oklahoma. right here and it was coming in from the west and we knew it was moving into a populated area. we watched it live onc nn from our local affiliates and
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broadcast it live to the world. and that school is plaza towers. it took a direct hit. seven children were killed in that school. but look at the damage that that school had. now on to el reno. i was there 11 days later. this is a 2.6 mile wide tornado that moved to the southeast for a while. but when it got very strong, almost 300 miles per hour with some mobile doppler radar units, it turned to the left, caught an awful lot of storm chasers out of where they should be in a very bad position. that's where the storm should have gone. it didn't do that. it turned to the left and the storm chasers were right there. in fact, even the weather channel was right there. their storm chase vehicle was hit by this tornado. but sadly, tim sa mayor russ and two other chasers were killed in that vehicle right there as the tornado overtook them. colorado flash floods. this is a once in a 1,000 year flood. 17 inches of rain in eight days.
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nine inches of rain in 24 hours. when you get that kind of rain in the mountains, it's going to run off. it can't all soak in. so the rain came down and ran down the mountains and washed away towns, washed away bridges and roads and there was significant daniel all the way into boulder. also had very effective video. we watched this just for hour as they rescued people out of some of these creeks and streams, these high water rescues went on for a couple days. now to india. 15 inches of rain in 24 hours. and look at what happened here. these towns were eaten alive by the water. washed away into the rivers here. one building after another. there were religious pilgrims in the area, as well. and more than 5,000 of them died. now on to europe. this issent a flash flood like we've just seen the past two. this is a long-term rain event. it rains in the mountains and the plains and it all gets down
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into the rivers. and the rivers there in europe went up. the danube, the china, the elb au at historic levels. they've been keeping records for some of these since 1501, even broke those rivers, vienna, budapest, prag all hit by the flood. super typhoon haiyan, the strongest storm to ever make landfall in recent history. a 200-mile-per-hour monster super typhoon. we had 20-foot storm surge. an end cooper was there, 6,000 people died as a 200-mile-per-hour wind rolled through tacloban. all of this happened in a year that the ipcc put out their climate report. those are the climate gurus for the united nations and they say we're going to have more heat
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waves in future. we're going to have more floods and more drought because of climate change. so maybe what we think of right now as extreme weather might just be the new normal. >> now, still ahead, i have someone that i really want you to meet. the senate chaplain. he made a name for himself by admonishing senators in his daily prayers during the government shutdown. ♪ [ male announcer ] how could switchgrass in argentina, change engineering in dubai, aluminum production in south africa, and the aerospace industry in the u.s.? at t. rowe price, we understand the connections of a complex, global economy. it's just one reason over 70% of our mutual funds beat their 10-year lipper average. t. rowe price. invest with confidence. request a prospectus or summary prospectus with investment information, risks, fees and expenses to read and consider carefully before investing.
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i need you. i feel so alone. but you're not alone. i knew you'd come. like i could stay away. you know i can't do this without you. you'll never have to. you're always there for me. shh! i'll get you a rental car. i could also use an umbrella. fall in love with progressive's claims service. during 2013, the senate had
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some particularly contentious pattals. you probably remember them. maybe you tried to tune them out. on so many occasions we watched lawmakers refusing to extend an olive branch to the other side. but one man dealt with it on a day to day basis. that's the senate chaplain. before the holidays dana bash went to barry black's office tucked away inside the capitol and got fascinating insight about his approach to ministering to politicians. >> let us pray. >> senate chaplain barry black got a lot of attention this fall by using his daily prayers to admonish senators during the government shutdown with lines like this. >> cover our shame with the robe of your righteousness. >> i was in an environment where most of the people i ministered to had been furloughed because of the federal. shutdown. so these were people who were not getting paid and who definitely needed their checks.
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if i could not muster up some passion, if i could not muster up some candor and if i i could not be somewhat approve fetic in what i was talking to god about, then shame on me. i really don't need to be in this job. >> for give us also when we put politics ahead of progress. >> did you get any blowback from any senators saying this isn't your job sir? >> i didn't. i tried in my prayers to be sufficiently nonpartisan that nothing i said could not be used as a description for both sides of the aisle. >> that's not easy. >> deliver us from the hypocritecy of attempting to sound reasonable while being unreasonable, anyone watching the debates would know that that indictment could be made
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>> you were parodied on "saturday night live." >> drown everybody! or at least allow your cleansing waters to carry them to a place far, far away. >> yes, i thought it was funny. i thought the premise was quite humorous. that, you know, not that i would want a flood to come. i certainly would extend a hand if i were in a boat to help a lawmaker out of the water but it was funny. >> reporter: black is known for his public prayers but most of his work is in private ministering to the senate community, a place he says really needs it. >> i am providing spiritual guidance through religious education. i officiate at weddings and funerals. i'm in the hospitals for hospital visitations. i have been with a number of senators when they died. >> whose bedside were you at when they died? >> well, most recently with
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senator daniel inouye from hawaii. >> a year ago. >> yes. >> what's that like? >> he was a great american, an amazing man, and a very dear friend. the last thing he did was scribble the word aloha on a piece of paper. there is nothing more instructive i think than being with someone who dies well. >> reporter: do any senators ever come to you for advice on how they're going to vote? >> i have senators who ask me how would you vote on this issue, which is one way of saying how do you think i should vote. >> reporter: how do you answer those questions? >> well, i tell senators i'm more interested in you having ethical reasons and evidence for your vote, and so i would rather teach you about ethical decision-making than to tell you which way to go on a particular issue. >> reporter: it's not unusual, unfortunately, for senators to have ethical problems. have you had those senators come
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to you taking -- >> i usually know about the ethical challenges long before it hits the media. yes, i have had senators who have attended my bible study who have had ethical challenges and ethical problems. 50th psalm says we're born in sin and shapen in inenick wit. a poet once said there's a little bit of bad in the best of us and a little bit of good in the worst of it so it behooves the best of us not to talk about the rest of us. >> pope francis, you're not catholic, but i'm curious to get your take on the kind of impact he's making. he's making catholics happy to be catholics again. he's making noncatholics look at the church and the tenets of the church based on what he has been saying and it's kind of political. what do you think about it? >> i think there's a providence that seems to raise up great leaders at the right time. i think he brings a desperately needed charisma coupled with
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this amazing humility. you rarely see that kind of a synthesis of just this marvelous charisma and yet this amazing humility. paying your own hotel bills and carrying your luggage and this kind of thing. just a tremendous example of how people of faith ought to live. so i'm so excited. >> reporter: it is christmastime. a lot of people are thinking about their spiritual center. what is your wish for congress and for the senate this holiday season? >> well, my wish is that our lawmakers and all of those who labor for freedom will take seriously the notion of peace on earth, goodwill to humankind. that is so critically important. in the sermon on the mount, jesus said blessed the peacemakers, for they will be called the children of god.
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and i want us all to be the children of god. we need to take peace a little more seriously than we do. so let there be peace on earth as the hymn writer says and let it begin with me. let it begin with us. >> reporter: dana bash, cnn, capitol hill. still ahead, it's got christmas romance, a dance number, even a heartwarming plot twist. but does the movie "love actually" qualify as a holiday classic? a heated debate. we'll be taking you inside next.
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i'm major thomas in stuttgart, germany. happy holidays, merry christmas and a happy new year to dad and mary and all my friends in toledo, ohio. i love you guys, miss you much. it is a film that's ten years old, but the movie "love actually" has sparked a great deal of debate in recent days. as jake tapper shows us, there are those who love "love actually" and think it's a new christmas classic and those who love to hate it. >> reporter: does "love actually" deserve to be considered a new christmas classic? film critic chris orr says no. emma green says yes. they write for the atlantic.
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earlier this month is office conversation turned into a heated debate. "love actually" turned into a battlefield. >> basically every one of our co-workers got up and surrounded us fight club style as we debated loudly over the merits of the movie. >> it was awesome. everything ground to a halt for five or ten minutes. >> they took their debate to the web with dueling articles. their work garnered more than 50,000 facebook shares. i confess i was one of them. the argument is brutal and fun. the decade-old british film "love actually" follows nine story lines each about some version of affection, young love, familiar companionship, ill-timed lust, truly joyful anticipati anticipation. orr argues these plot lines are superficial and even immoral. >> i think it's an actively
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ant anti-romantic movie. >> green says love is the spirit of the season no matter how sloppy its expression. >> they don't have time to show all of the four-hour conversations that eventually lead people to fall in love intellectually. it's more about that magic chemistry moment that allows people to inexplicable call into the crush zone, and i think that's a very valid and magical and wonderful thing to show. >> reporter: it should be noted "love actually" got mixed reviews when it came out including orr's scathing write t up. >> it was worse than i remember. >> "a christmas story" was originally panned. and now that movie is an undisputed classic right alongside "love actually"? actually, i'm not going to take a position in this great debate.
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>> that was jake tapper reporting, and that's it for me. merry christmas. "newsroom" continues right now with fredricka whitfield. thanks so much. merry christmas to you, brianna, and everyone else as well. i'm in for brooke baldwin today. if you're celebrating, thanks for letting us be a part of your celebration. from the believers not nonbelievers and those who are hedging their bets somewhere in between, christmas day is always a warm time of year despite the temperature that it might be outside. we're hearing christmas day messages from leaders around the world today, and on this holy day, each expressed their faith in mankind. that we can be kinder, gentler, and better people. each delivered their message in their own style, of course, online. text savar


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