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tv   CNN Newsroom With Fredricka Whitfield  CNN  December 25, 2016 10:00am-11:01am PST

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whitfield. merry christmas to one and all. israeli prime minister netanyahu says he's summoning daniel shapiro after the u.s. allowed a resolution condemning israel settlements to pass. a foreign ministry spokesman says the meetings were to express deep anger and dissatisfaction as a result of the vote of countries that consider themselves friends of israel. now, that vote sparked a bipartisan backlash from many here in the u.s. who thought the united states should have backed israel and voted against the measure which would have killed it. oren liebermann is in jerusalem for us now. explain the significance of this. >> reporter: well, this is a way of expressing anger, disappointment and frustration when there is a conduct by some
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oth other country, as the united states, and a series of diplomatic steps we've seen unfolding since shortly after this resolution passed. it is rare. it's considered a major step to summit an ambassador for criticism. netanyahu criticizing the decision of these countries to vote in favor of this resolution. at first, the u.s. wasn't on the list. it was left off because the vote had abstained and decided not to vote for the resolution. but after considering, netanyahu decided to summon the u.s. ambassador to israel dan shapiro for a meeting to express his disappointment about this vote. it's a major step. shapiro is a president obama appointee which means he may only have a few weeks left in office before being replaced by david freeman.
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he supports the settlement outside of the west bank and that makes netanyahu much happier. he wanted to express his disappointment with president obama and did that through what he said but also through summoning the ambassador to a meeting where he expressed how angry he was. dana? >> oren liebermann in jerusalem for us. thank you so much. palestinian officials are delighted by the victory of the cause for palestinian statehood. i want to bring in a senior adviser to the palestinian president and joining me now from ramala. what does this vote mean to palestinians? >> it means a victory for our
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cause. for our state we can call our own to elect our party and we've been debriefed this which is an ex treatment right-wing elements in it. it's a victory because if netanyahu wants a two-state resolution, he should be celebrating. it's a victory for internationalism and the responsibility to bring about peace and security worldwide. and this is not the resolution against israel. it's against the expansion that has been in place by netanyahu for many years. >> sorry to interrupt. we're going to talk about more of the substance of it but i want to ask you a question about some of the behind the scenes mechanics.
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there are reports that the palestinians and the obama administration officials k colluded to put this in motion. is that true? >> this is a resolution that was taken by the u.n. security council members. there has been an effort by our mission in new york, by our president here, by our friends worldwide to really do something to stop the daily bleeding of the two-state solution and to stop the -- >> so was john kerry involved in trying to push for this to happen? >> no. they have denied all of these reports. the u.s. has taken its own
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position. we have had samantha power and her remarks after the vote and she said that she represents the united states of america. she represents both the democratic party and the republicans. she represents the long-standing, unwavering policy of the u.s. that considers settlements to be illegal and must cease and quoted from president reagan to president obama. so the u.s. has just cast its position based on its long-held policy. nothing has changed. we are just wondering why we are considering this to be the exception. what the u.s. has done is just in line with its own law and own policy and international law. >> well, as you well know, the critics -- and there are many here in the united states -- argue that it's the forum, it's the u.n. so my question for you, you won a ba big political victory.
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is there any fear that that antagonized him and his allies against the palestinians? >> well, it's the move of the u.n. was really anti-peace and to affirm a two-state solution and the co-existence between the two cities and not to affirm the long-standing u.s. policy, i would understand your question. but it was to save us and israel and craft our way towards the future. if you read the resolution, will you find out that this is the best for both palestinians and israelis. the problem is that if netanyahu argues that the u.n. security council, the highest political and legal entity in the world, is the place that should not discuss international issues, then we should dismantle the u.n. altogether. >> well, the fact that you said that is -- it may not be
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dismant dismantled, the idea is being discussed, at least withholding funds from the u.s. which is a big chunk of their budget. i want to play something that lindsey graham said yesterday. saying he's not only going to withhold the charge to withhold money to the u.n. and to you, palestinians. he talked about a u.s. citizen in his home state. take a listen. >> taylor force was a young man whose parents live in south carolina, west point graduate, went to israel on a visit as part of a graduate exchange program and was killed by a palestinian and the body was sent back to ramallah and his family had to pay a big cash lump sum because he was a hero in their eyes. >> what do you say to that and to the idea that there is going to be a move in the u.s. congress to stop giving the palestinians financial aid? >> well, the first case that the
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senator mentioned is regrettable. we have condemned in the strongest words and there are thousands of palestinians who lose their lives throughout this conflict by the operation and this is not the issue. the issue is how do we move forward and if the senator and all those who talk about our move in the u.n. to be anti-peace, if they have an alternative, we are willing to listen. we have tried bilateral talks for 23 years and the u.s. has sponsored the talks for all of these years including the latest round held by secretary of state kerry and went back to the congress and said the netanyahu government has not delivered its promises and has made the peace process not work. the question is, where do we go now? >> exactly. >> if we don't have the united nations as the home for international -- if we don't seek international law, what do
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we do? actually, to senator lindsey, we say the best alternative to this criminal act on both sides is to seek international law, is to ensure there is a third party that could enforce its will on us because we have tried the two sides to sort it out for too long and we did not succeed because the ambassador of power and israeli governments have tried to -- >> doctor, i want to talk about that important point you made up looking forward because it's going to be a whole new world. first, about your own leadership, do you think it is time for new blood inside the palestinian leadership and even perhaps the man that you advised, mahmoud abbas, perhaps it's time for him to go or at least hold new elections and could that help at least one part of the process of moving
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forward? >> this is not for the international community. this is a palestinian international matter and the palestinian people will choose and for those who see fit to lead them. i think the president, mahmoud abbas, was voted with a consensus he has the support of his party and movement and i strongly believe supported by his party he would win and palestinian is not just looking for new blood. they are acting for what can carry us through this difficult time and strategy of nonviolence and making sure we have international support and it's been paying off and stability and security under circumstances i think people vote for his
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ideas, vote for his success and also his credibility with the u.s. and the u.n. security council two days ago, people are watching that. this is not about old or young. there are some people with old people with young ideas and some young people with me with old ideas. >> dr. zomlot, we are running out of time. i want to ask one final question about new blood. there will be new blood in the united states, donald trump. he has made it very, very clear that trying to finally find a way for there to be a workable peace process between palestinian and israelis is a top priority and he wants to try to get it done. he's obviously not the first president-elect to say that but he comes from a very different world. do you think it is possible that the fact that he is unshackled with or by the constraints of traditional diplomacy could actually be helpful?
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do you have hope? >> yesterday i celebrated christmas and the church of nativity, the birthplace of jesus, i joined the palestinian president and he said to hundreds of believers, he hopes that the president-elect trump would really start focusing on us and our hearts, our hopes are high and our prayers of christmas eve is that he is going to be the one who makes the deal absolutely we are willing, we are ready to move with him towards the opportunity of peace. we need this. the region needs it and the u.s. needs it. we just need to really focus on how do we tell netanyahu that you can no longer have the cake and eat it, too. you can no longer implement all of these policies against the u.s. law, against the logic of peace and get away with it. either we sit at the table and
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salt it or you deal with the consequences of it. >> dr. zomlot, thank you for ending on that hopeful message and for joining me on this christmas day from ramallah, i really appreciate it. >> merry christmas. >> thank you. you, too. and we just heard from benjamin netanyahu who is weighing in on the issue of the u.s. abstaining from the vote in the u.n. this week. take a listen. >> over decades, american administrations and israeli governments have disagreed about settlements but we agreed that the security council was not the place to resolve this issue. we knew that going there would make negotiations harder and drive peace further away. and as i told john kerry on thursday, friends don't take friends to the security council. and i'm encouraged by the statements of our friends in the united states, republicans and democrats alike.
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they understand how reckless and destructive this u.n. resolution was. they understand that the western wall isn't occupied territory. i look forward to working with those friends and with the new administration when it takes office next month. >> tough words there from the israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu. we'll be back with more on this and much, much more right after a break. e the hulford quads. (laughter) we're in 8th grade. technology is the only thing that really entertains us. i'm gonna use this picture on sketchbook, and i'm going to draw mustaches on you all. using the pen instead of fingers, it just feels more comfortable for me. be like, boop! it's gone. i like that only i can get into it and that it recognizes my fingerprint. our old tablet couldn't do that. it kind of makes you feel like you're your own person, which is a rare opportunity in my family. (laughter) family road trip! fun! check engine. not fun! but, you've got hum.
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president-elect donald trump plans to dissolve the trump administration in an attempt avoid conflicts of interest. he said, "to avoid an appearance of conflict, i've decided to pursue my strong interest in philanthropy in other ways." the trump administration was criticized among allegations that they used it to settle private legal disputes and it's now under investigation. so let's talk about this with ron brownstein. i want to show you what the new york attorney general said in a statement. "the trump foundation is still
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under investigation by this office and cannot legally dissolve until that investigation is complete. how big of a challenge does it present for trump as he's trying to move forward, do what people have been calling for him to do which is disentangle himself from potential conflicts of interest. >> this is the secondary front in the much bigger debate that is going to go on over the potential conflicts of interests surrounding donald trump. the foundations of charitable operations were limited at best as the excellent reporting by "the washington post" has indicated. and the attorney general has made clear that this is going to go on, their investigation is going to continue. i look at this decision by donald trump as just kind of one
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small step in the larger question of what kind of barriers and bright lines he's going to try to draw with his business, which is still a fluid and ongoing challenge for the president-elect. >> that's a good point. david, i was talking earlier to the historian tim natali who views this as a good first step because it's the first step in acknowledging that there are conflicts of interest. do you agree with that? >> i do agree with that. first of all, merry christmas and happy hanukkah to everyone. president-elect trump campaigned on the idea that he was going to run the country and his adult children were going to run the business. even though this is a good first step, why is it being treated like a first thought or first step that they have decided that they have to make this move as
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opposed to saying that it's clear that there has to be a separation between the running of the country and the foundation. it's incumbent upon them to build a wall or area of separation -- >> so to speak. >> not that wall. not that wall. >> ron, you know, it would be fair to the trump campaign, to the transition, to the family it's not that easy when the way that he has made his money is really tangible things, like hotels, for example, the hotel that they just opened down the street from the white house. we're already seeing questions of diplomats wanting to go and stay there, to tell the trump team that they are doing so to curry favor or, you know, maybe something potentially more
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nefarious than that. so even if he's technically behind a wall, there's a trump brand and there's going to be attempts of people using those businesses by people trying to get what they want in a quid pro quo even if the trump people are not aware of it. >> right. and look, that is why you have many ethics experts, including officials from democratic white houses, who have said the only way to truly deal with this is something that doesn't seem to be on the table. anything short of that leaves open the possibility of complications. a foreign government or foreign interests trying to curry favor
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in existing products and it's just a reminder of how complicated that is and they do seem to be taking it somewhat more seriously than earlier. but the possibilities are just open-ended. >> david, ten seconds, final thought? >> being president of the united states is not a branding or marketing opportunity. donald trump is now the president of the united states. >> amen. thank you so much, ron brownstein, david swerlick, thank you for coming in and spending this time with us today. and coming up -- >> they go low, we go high. >> i disavow. okay? >> come on, man.
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>> it was an election year for the history books. next, the top ten political moments of 2016.
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2016 saw no shortage of showdowns and jaw-dropping revelations from the campaign
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trail. cnn's jake tapper has a look at the top ten moments in politics. >> this year politics was turned on its head. several cracks in the grass ceilings made for an unparallel race between the first female party nominee and billionaire political outsider. president-elect trump will soon take office but first let's look back at our top ten political stories of 2016. number ten, conservative supreme court justice antonin scalia died suddenly in february. >> everything is on the line. >> and in an unprecedented move, republicans vowed to block any high court amovements until after the election. >> simply to turn your back before the president even names a nominee is not an option.
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>> reporter: number nine. in their final presidential year, the obamas hit the campaign trail. >> come on, man! donald trump is uniquely unqualified to be president. >> reporter: but a different tone after the democratic defeat. >> if you succeed, then the country succeedses. >> reporter: number eight. >> i beat the country. i beat the hell out of them. >> reporter: he struggled to win over the party. republican leaders distanced themselves. >> will you support him? >> i'm just not ready to do that. >> reporter: will the party unify around president trump? number seven, trump's unvarnished campaign attracts extremist support. >> i don't know what you're talking about with white
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supremacy. >> reporter: he was slow to denounce white supremacists. >> david duke endorsed me? okay. i disavow. okay? >> reporter: even targeting a judge in his university fraud case. >> if you are saying he can't do his job because of his race, is that not the deaf significance of racism? >> no, i don't think so at all. >> reporter: number six, the conventions. >> the first time that a major party has nominated a woman for president. >> reporter: hillary clinton made history in philadelphia and a gold star family made trump an offer. >> have you even read the united states constitution? i will gladly lend you my copy. >> reporter: in cleveland, melania trump's speech was familiar. >> you work hard for what you want in life. >> you work hard for what you want in life.
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>> reporter: and senator ted cruz refused to support the nominee. number five -- >> he called her miss piggy. >> you sent out a series of tapes. >> reporter: then the crude video of trump. >> grab them by the [ bleep ]. >> reporter: he brushed it aside. >> this was merely locker room a talk. >> reporter: trump denied the allegations and said he would sue. number four, senator bernie sanders built a huge movement. >> we are actually listening to the american people, not the 1%. >> reporter: but was it rigged by the outsiders. >> secretary clinton received superdelegates before anyone was in the race.
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>> reporter: bernie or bust protesters refused to vote for clinton. number three, democrats were hacked. >> they are under attack. >> reporter: stolen e-mails from the dnc received bias forcing the chair to resign. >> there's no question in my mind that the dnc was in opposition to our campaign. >> reporter: u.s. intelligence points to russian cyberattacks. >> our goal continues to be to send a clear message to russia or others not to do this to us because we can do it to you. >> there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of classified information. >> reporter: the fbi recommended no charges for clinton's use of a private e-mail server. still, the issue was gold for republicans. >> she's guilty as hell. >> lock her up! >> reporter: she tried to quell concerns. >> my e-mails are so boring. >> reporter: but the fbi said they discovered new ones just
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before election day. >> it's imperative that the bureau explain this issue. >> reporter: number one. >> hillary clinton has called donald trump to concede the race. >> reporter: donald trump won the white house! >> a campaign unlike anything we have seen in a lifetime. >> i love this country. >> reporter: secretary bowed out. >> we have seen that our nation is more deeply divided than we thought. >> reporter: now a cabinet of billionaires, outsiders and military men will join trump for an era of who knows what. >> those were our top ten political stories of this year. the question is who and what will top the list next year? jake tapper, cnn, washington. >> the fbi warning about possible isis attacks on churches in the u.s. we'll discuss. plus, the president-elect
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says fighting terror is his top priority. how exactly will he accomplish that? ♪ music playing ♪ p is for permission to indulge. o is for out of this world. l is for loving the seasonal cuisine. a is for access to everything, including the aisle. r is for reclining in tailor-made bedding. and i... must be dreaming. s... so long, jet lag.
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polaris, from united.
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and now for an update on a tragic plane crash with no survivors in the black sea. a military plane with 92 people on board, most of them members of a well-known military choir, rescuers found the wreck in the water about a mile from where it took off. the winter olympic city of sochi. cnn's matthew chance is in moscow following the developments. >> reporter: well, according to defense officials, none of the passengers or crew on board this 154 aircraft operated by the russian military survived the crash which happened shortly after takeoff from sochi in southern russia. a naval recovery operation has been under way to retrieve bits of the aircraft's fuselage and bodies and a formal investigation into the disaster
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has been launched. this was an aircraft en route to syria and to russia's military base there in latakia. on board were more than 60 members of the russian army's official military choir and dance troop, the red army choir oral electsand oral -- or alexandrov. they also were transported journalists to syria. me amy colleagues have taken this trip in the past. russian officials say there were at least nine journalists on board this flight, all apparently from russia news organizations who had been asked to cover the musical performances in syria. vladimir putin has offered his condolences and declared a day of national mourning for the passengers and crew who lost their lives and appointed m
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medeved to investigate. this aircraft was in smooth weather conditions and plunged fatly into the sea. matthew chance, cnn, moscow. pope francis making his traditional christmas day address from vatican city with message to the people of the world about the victims of aleppo saying far too much blood has been spilled. >> translator: aleppo, site of the most awful battles in recent weeks. it's most urgent that support be guaranteed for the exhausted civil populist with respect for humanitarian loss. it's time for weapons to be still forever. >> the pope also urged the international community to actively seek a solution to restore civility in war-torn
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aleppo. i want to talk more about this with lieutenant rick francona, former u.s. military in syria and the middle east. first of all, thank you for joining me. merry christmas to you. >> thank you. >> i want to start with russia, which has declared that the assad regime with russia's help has regained full control with the city of aleppo. what does that mean? >> well, it's a severe blow to the opposition. they were hanging on to aleppo as not only a symbolic place but a place where they could run a sh shadowed government. and now we've got to face this humanitarian disaster. this is just another nail in the coffin. it does not look good for the
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opposition because the syrian regime is starting to move south. the next battle in idlib which is where all of the fighters escaped to. slowly but surely, unless they garner support from outside, it's only a matter of time before they are totally defeated and assad wins. that's why you're not seeing a push for the iranians or the regime because they know that they've got this one if they stick it out. so i think aleppo was the first step in that ultimate defeat. >> so let's turn to iraq. i want to show everybody pictures from the town of bartella in iraq. it's a christian town. people there are celebrating christian mass for the first time in two years. it had been under isis control for the last two years before being liberated by iraqi forces.
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so let's just take a moment and look at this because we just delivered some not so great news about syria but could iraq be a different story going into 2017? >> yeah, i think so. iraqis have the momentum here. they've hit a couple of setbacks but they've committed the proper amount of source to take that city back. it will happen. it's going to take time. i remember that the iraqi poll significances said they were going to have this done by the end of the year. i think they will be lucky to have it done by the end of january. isis is putting up one heck of a fight. they know there is no survival for them or escape. they are going to make it as expensive as possible. iraq could be the success story. once the iraqis eradicate, how do they reintegrate the sunnis
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and kurds back into one country? it's going to be very, very difficult. it's a challenge but it could work. i'm very optimistic about iraq. >> and now finally, on the heels of the berlin attack, the fbi and homeland security department have warned about new isis threats here at home targeting churches and holiday events this weekend. millions of americans are obviously celebrating. what do you -- how do you interpret, given your vast experience in these matters, how do you interpret that bulletin? >> i'm very concerned because, you know, that bulletin goes out and everybody goes onto full alert and i think we've been very fortunate now that there's not been any attacks but it's early. it's early on christmas day. we still have this whole holiday season to get through and new year's when you have big celebrations like in new york. so i think we're in a target-rich environment and isis may try something. the problem is, when everybody
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else is on full alert, they just sit back. this is how insurgents operate. they will wait until the alert goes away. you cannot be on full alert forever. eventually we're going to lower our guard and they are going to act. >> colonel rick francona, thank you so much for your time and, again, merry christmas to you and your family. >> and happy hanukkah. >> thank you. this is not just the end of the obama era. it's also the end of the era of the longest-serving female in congress in u.s. history. my interview with outgoing barbara mikulski. why she thinks hillary clinton lost the election and why america may not be ready for a female president. >> i think that there were a lot of biases against her. you know what we find when you break the glass ceiling? you end up living in a glass
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office.
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washington is saying good-bye to a living legend, barbara mikulski, will retire after 30 years in the senate. i sat down with her to discuss her final thoughts while in office and hillary clinton not breaking the final, biggest, hardest glass ceiling. >> reporter: when barbara mikulski was elected senator 30 years ago, it was really a man's world kbl wh world. >> when i came to the senate, it was tom, dick and harry. >> reporter: literally. women were not allowed to wear pants. there were only two of them. >> we disagree on issues but
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what we said was, number one, we'll be a zone of civility. >> reporter: she's the longest serving woman in the history of congress. still, she's retiring disappointed. her old senate colleague failed to become the first female president. >> the best things really do come in small packages. >> reporter: hillary clinton's defeat for you was on a scale of 1 to 10. >> 52, really. i couldn't believe election night as i watched the returns. it was enormously disappointing. >> do you think america was just not ready for a female president? you're a female trailblazer. you have some informed opinions, i would think. >> reporter: i think that there were a lot of biases against her. you know what we find when you break the glass ceiling? you end up living in a glass office where everything you do is scrutinized.
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>> on behalf of all of the women who have broken down barriers for others. >> reporter: it's not just her feminism that makes clinton's defeat so crushing, it's that her own democratic party lost touch with working class votes that she says she never stopped voting for. >> there are people right now in baltimore that have three part-time jobs. many of my constituents feel that they are either losing their job overseas or they could lose it to a robot. >> reporter: you know you sound like donald trump, right? >> no. i think i sound like barbara mikulski. >> reporter: she admits the election results make it tougher to leave, worried a lot of her work on obamacare and beyond may be undone. >> you cannot take a wrecking ball to the very agencies that are designed to help american workers get on their feet. >> reporter: still, the first woman to ever chair the powerful appropriations committee tells us behind the scenes bipartisanship she witnessed in
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this historic room gives her hope. >> we sit next to each other and rather than at the head table, our job is to bring the committee together with the best ideas and most affordable ideas, not to square off. >> reporter: the 4'11" senator made a long career. >> it's not easy being 4'11" in an institution like this. >> reporter: she has a reputation for sometimes being intimidating. >> let them feel the hard landing that my constituents face. >> reporter: yeah. >> when women are persistent and insistent are viewed as tough. now, i view it as just being effective. >> reporter: one of her proudest achievements, legislation giving women equal pay for equal work, the first bill signed by the first black president. >> he said, this pen is yours.
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>> reporter: now it's the end of the obama and the mikulski eras and the senator walked out the door dropping important pearls of wisdom. >> always listen to the people. they really do have the best ideas. >> . >> and a point of personal privilege on the senate floor, i will certainly miss covering barbara mikulski on the senate floor. can tell her to drive more like this. because you'll get this. you can even set boundaries for so if she should be here, but instead goes here, here, or here. you'll know. so don't worry, mom. because you put this, in here. hum by verizon. the technology designed to make your car smarter, safer and more connected. put some smarts in your car.
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it is christmas and this is the segment where we put the christmas backdrop up to look maybe like what you're living room, what your family room looks like at this moment as you're celebrating the holiday. and as you're doing so, it might be the last day of this year for holiday music and for holiday films. cnn has a look at some of the season's favorites. >> reporter: it's that time of the year again, there's frost in the air, snow on the ground.
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the holiday season decks the halls with a potent amount of pop culture, with everything from the grinch to kevin mcallister. mariah carey's all i want for christmas is you. yeah. it was streamed almost 44 million times during the 2015 holiday season. not bad for a song released in 1994. as for the most popular christmas song recorded by multiple artists, that distinction going to, no surprise, irving berlin's "white christmas." on screen, holiday television programming reached more than 90% of american households in
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2014. no doubt a favorite in those households was "it's a wonderful life." however the film wasn't a athlete kl hit at all. and was so forgotten that the rights lapsed into public domain in 1974. it was subsequently shown over and over again on the holidays. not because it was beloved, but because it was free. the biggest blockbuster is "a christmas story." it also spawned a sequel that included a cameo from an unknown businessman. >> excuse me, where's the lobby? >> down the hall and to the left. >> oh, the holiday, a great time to spend with friends and family, even if they're not real. >> nobody's walking out on this fun family christmas, no, no, we're all in this together. >> happy holidays everybody.
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and president obama and the first lady gave their final christmas address to the nation. the obamas reflected on the last eight years and also looked toward the future. >> so as we look forward to the new year, let's resolve to recommit ourselves to the values we share. and on behalf of all the obamas, michelle, malia, sasha, bo and that troublemaker sonny. merry christmas, everybody. >> and we wish you and your family a happy and healthy 2017. thanks and god bless. >> the first couple also addressed military families to support the troops not only at the holidays but all year round. the president-elect tweeted out #merrychristmas. with a photo of him with his right hand raised in a fist with
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a christmas tree in the background. trump also posted a picture of a lighted minora for a hanukkah holiday message. now we'll see what happens. these are my great grandparents. and ten thousand relatives i didn't know existed. i've never gotten really this far. myheritage.com sign up for free today.
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hello, merry christmas and thank you for joining me. i'm dana bash in for fredrick whitfield. benjamin netanyahu says he's summoning the u.s. ambassador. the two are meeting we just learned tonight. israel also summoned the ambassadors of ten other countries that voted for the resolution. a foreign ministry spokesman said the meetings are, quote, to express deep anger and dissatisfaction as a result of the vote of countries that consider themselves friends of israel. the vote sparked a bipartisan backlash from many here in the u.s. who thought that the u.s. should have backed the u.n. against the resolution that

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