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tv   Weekends With Alex Witt  MSNBC  December 15, 2013 9:00am-10:01am PST

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expect another blast of wintry weather. this after the last storm left parts of the country under a foot of uh snow. a live report ahead. the latest ruthless act by the north korean leader. why did he do it? the fight for higher minimum wage. it could affect every state and every city. one man's blueprint. and "saturday night live" sets the record straight on santa claus. hello, everyone. high noon here, 9:00 a.m. in the west. right now the powerful storm that stretched a thousand miles from the midwest to hear in the northeast is leaving travel headaches and a massive cleanup in its wake. ice, snow and freezing rain in 20 states.
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at least four people died. icy conditions forced the cancellation of 1200 flights causing a ripple effect nationwide. >> he was supposed to come from washington, d.c. he was supposed to call me if the flight was cancelled. it's saying cancelled. >> this is my holiday vacation. i thought i was going to lose it. >> reporter: slick roadways and reduced visibility led to car crashes and spinouts. >> they hit each other in the intersection, spun out. one hit us and the other went behind and hit the car behind us. >> up to a foot of snow in places. another arctic blast may be behind it. dr. greg postel is here from the weather channel. >> the winter storm that brought snow to the northeast is beginning to move away now. if you look at the satellite pictures, dryer air from southwest to northeast on the strong jet stream pushing the high clouds away and taking the snow with it. you can see as we move through the afternoon hours the snow
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will be relegated to parts of maine. that's the area shaded in blue moving through the afternoon, even places like bangor, maine will be done with with snow by 4:00 or 5:00 this afternoon. then we are left with a cold northwesterly flow blowing all across the region. any roads that may be wet if you are above freezing this afternoon will likely refreeze tonight as temperatures go down below freezing. look at the monday morning lows. keep it in mind if you are traveling around. new york, 22. boston, 10. portland, maine, 4. you get the idea that winter will not let go as the winds blow in earlier in the week. then we have another storm moving toward the northeast, beginning on tuesday morning. an area of snow breaks out across the great lakes and moves across areas that were just impacted by this recent snow event. keep an eye to the weather forecast. things could change quickly.
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it is possible that more accumulating snow coming into the big cities like boston and new york in just a matter of hours by tuesday. guys, back to you. >> thank you very much. we we'll have a live report from where the storm is headed next at the bottom of the hour. the two lawmakers behind the budget agreement headed to the senate are revealing details about how the deal was struck. house budget committee chairman paul ryan and senate budget committee chairwoman patty -- negotiated that. neither got exactly what they wanted but say it open it is door for cooperation for issues down the road. >> i think it is a step forward that shows that there can be other break throughs in compromise if you take the time to know somebody, know their passions and how to work together. >> exactly right. >> there's been a lot of government by crisis. >> we spent time getting to know each other. we basically learned if we require the other to violate a
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core principle we'll get nowhere. we keep grid lock. we spent weeks finding where the common ground existed. >> so it is either hanging by a thread or a done deal. which one is it? >> according to aides on both sides of the aisle, the legislation is expected to pass through the senate. the question is how much drama will there be along the way. some republicans in the senate, those facing tough re-election battles in to 14 and those considering presidential runs have come out to say they are opposed to the legislation including marco rubio, minority leader mitch mcconnell is signalling he will oppose the legislation. he is facing a challenge from a tea party republican in his primary which is coming up in 2014. overall, there is a t lot of pressure on the senate to get this legislation passed.
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it passed with broad bipartisan support in the house. of course republicans still licking their wounds in the wake of the government shutdown. that's something they really shouldered most of the blame for. of course we are seeing the broader debate play out within the republican party. we saw it with house speaker john boehner lambast thing conservative groups opposed to the legislation before they knew what was in it. alex, this comes down to a debate about compromise. is it a dirty word or a good thing? here is more of what ryan and murray had to say. take a listen. >> government has to function. we saw the specter of two possible government shutdown this is 2014. one in january, one in october. i don't think that's good for anybody. it's not good for the country. >> we didn't get everything we wanted but we did get certainty for the next two years. we have a point now where we are not going to tell everybody we are going to through the economy in a tail spin because we have
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to have something. >> reporter: we should emphasize that a lot could change between now and tuesday when the legislation faces its first procedural hurdle. we expect it will ultimately make it through the senate. >> to get the 60 votes. thank you very much, kristen welker at the white house. to south africa where the world watched as the nation said a final good-bye to its favorite son. nelson mandela was laid to rest in his committee. whe -- in the family compound in the village where he grew up. richard engel is in south africa in qunu. tell us about the ceremony. >> reporter: the ceremony is now over. most of the dignitaries have left. ten days of official mourning are over. south africans will have to go back to their lives, go back to work and see if they can continue to carry on mandela's legacy. here in his home valg of qunu, many said it felt they were burying the father of the
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nation. it was the last leg of a long journey. to the resting place where nelson mandela asked to be buried in the small village where he grew up. ♪ >> reporter: it was a grand state send-off. but also a private moment for a few thousand invited guests including his extended family, world leaders, royalty, celebrities and old friends here to say good-bye to the man who had come so far. >> he went to school in bare with feet and rose to the highest office of the land. it is within each of us to achieve anything we want in life. >> reporter: mandela's journey and achievements are the founding lepgd of modern south africa and everyone here knows the tale. he was -- >> a very important prisoner, a very important philosopher, a very important praghmatist, a
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very important president. >> reporter: jacob zuma, the current president, who many say has failed to li up to the moral standard of mandela vowed to carry on the legacy. >> it is the end of glorious years, the long walk to freedom has ended in the physical sense. our own journey continues. >> let us pray. >> reporter: then at noon, by tradition, when the sun was highest and the shadows shortest, he was let go. as south africans said nelson mandela was finally free. today harked the end of mandela's extraordinary life from political activist to prisoner to the man who helped set this nation free. alex? >> all right , richard engel, thank you so much. what a beautiful backdrop behind you. thank you. there hay be red-faced parents in italy today.
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look at what this little boy did at the vatican when he met pope francis. he grabbed the skull cap and the am pope enjoyed it. the boy didn't get to keep it as the pope put it where it belongs. more people are moving to cities. office politics also with veteran nbc correspondent martin fletcher. you will hear the question i asked that the surprised him and left him speechless.
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i have personally raised the issue not only at the highest level that i have been involved with, but also through other intermediaries. we don't have any meeting with anybody who has something to do with iran or an approach to iran
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where we don't talk to them about how we might be able to find not just mr. levinson but two other americans that we are deeply concerned about. the iranian government has the the ability help us here. we hope they will. >> that, of course, secretary of state john kerry in a new interview speaking about the american who's been missing in iran for seven years and has been revealed to be a cia contractor. joining me adam schiff from the house intelligence and appropriations committee. good to see you. thanks for joining us. >> good to see you. >> has the case been handled correctly by the government? >> well, it certainly wasn't handled correctly from the outset. it's astounding that you have this -- i can't say botched operation. unauthorized operation according to the press reports where people whose job it was to analyze the intelligence ran their own operation. it's unquestionable that there were terrible decisions made in
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the origins of this. since that time, i think the intelligence community has done its best to figure out where he might be, how to secure his release. there hasn't been much information. his capture took place before i got on the committee. i'm not aware of a lot of new information that's been generated over the years. i think the secretary of state is right. whether it's sergeant burgdahl in afghanistan or mr. levinson in iran. we continue to press to find people who are captured or go missing. >> so your reaction to the story being published -- and it was held for three years by the authors of the article at the government's request because they thought they would be getting new information and didn't want to compromise anything. >> it's unusual to make an appeal to get someone released by a public demonstration that he was working for an intelligence community. that's not something that generally helps you get released. the iranian reaction has been,
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tell us what mission he was on. i can see after the elapsed seven years if nothing else works, sometimes raising the public awareness and attention might have an opportunity to break things loose that haven't been broken loose in the past. probably more than the disclosure of this has been the new dialogue we are having with iran. that opens up possibilities that haven't been there before. let's hope it leads to his release. >> okay. i would like to ask about north korea and the reports that kim jong-un had his uncle executed. perhaps the second most powerful man in the country. what's your interpretation? >> that kim jong-un is not only ruthless, but looking to a lot of the family history where his father, grandfather have purged people, perhaps not as violently as this and not close family members. it shows a certain dangerous erratic nature of this young leader's behavior which for a nuclear power is of grave
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concern. china is worried because jang was a person they dealt with, one of the windows into that regime. i think it is a dangerous turn of events. we don't know much what it means. i think it is safe to say he's consolidating power in the country. and that we can expect future dangerous provocative and erratic behavior by this young, untested leader. >> other intelligence news, the "new york times" a title says the u.s. may never know the extent of snowden's leaks. do you the agree with that assessment? >> doi do agree unfortunately. we will know the most significant material he stole because it's being pub lished by the guardiaguardian. there could be a large quantity of other information the newpapers don't consider provocative enough to publish
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that may never know. he used different ways to hide his trail that i can't go into. i don't think we'll have a complete assessment. we have to plan for the worst. >> are you concerned? it talks about how he was able to exploit the blind spots this the system. these are top secret systems. he got in, did his thing. >> i'm concerned about it. obviously he was able to do it because he understood the systems well. it was part of his job. also in part because some of the protections we were requiring to be put in place had n't been put in place yet, hadn't been fully implemented. hopefully with some of the new protections we can catch people that want to become a future snowden. this is one of of the most grave concerns that you will have copy cats, people that want to aggrandize themselves or disagree on policy and take matters into their own hands by making disclosures of classified information. that's probably the most
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significant threat that he'll inspire others. we can't have a system where members of the intelligence community decide to be policy maker and what's in the best interest of the country or the world to disclose. it's going to be a problem in the future. >> finally the budget for which i know you voted while expressing serious concerns in terms of the lack of extending emergency unemployment benefits. will there be an extension before december 28? >> it's hard to see it happening. it's possible. you could have the senate move on that. you could have a unanimous consent provision in the house. although it's possible, it is unlikely at this point. harry reid said he'll take it up in january. that will be too late for a great many families. hopefully, we can move it quickly in the senate, take it up in the house. there are chips that could be used to bargain for that. it's terrible, i think that we
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are going into the holiday season and millions of people will go without. it will dampen the economy. it's bad economics every way you look at it. >> you called it a lump of coal on the 28th. >> yes, it is. >> thank you, adam schiff. >> thank you. a call for a local hike in minimum wage and how to pay for it next. first, on "saturday night live" santa claus came on "weekend upda update" to settle whether or not he's white. >> i guess the truth is out. you heard of secret santa. here's a secret for you -- i'm black as hell. >> i never knew. >> good. it's better for everybody that way. do you know how many presents i have to deliver? i can't get pulled over every ten minutes. >> you're okay with people thinking santa is white? >> white guy taking credit for something a black guy did? i'm more used to it than okay with it. [ male announcer ] what if a small company
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calls for a higher minimum wage are getting louder. calls against wage inequalities are getting louder. an article in the atlantic says workers need more to get by in san francisco or new york than in smaller cities. joining me now is richard florida who wrote the article. he's a professor at the university of toronto and a seen kwor editor at the atlantic. welcome. nice to see you. >> thanks for having me. >> let's talk about the article. we argue we need a minimum wage that reflects different conditions in areas across the city. setting the minimum wage above the federal level makes sense. how do you pay for it? >> first of all, of all the 50 so large cities and metros over a million people, not a single one if you set the minimum wage at 60% of the median, not a single one is that high enough
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to give people a good middle class job. but the big issue is what it takes to live in a place like orlando, buffalo, new orleans or memphis or miami is a lot different from what it takes to live in san francisco or washington, d.c. or silicon valley. these knowledge metros. there we are talking about a minimum wage in the range of $15 just to get people above the poverty threshold. how do you pay for it? back when we made manufacturing jobs, the good jobs we want to bring back. we decided as a country we pay more for cars, washing machines. we may more for a tv set. we have to decide the consumers will have to spend more for the burger, more for the hair cut or manicure and it won't drive us broke in the middle class. it will raise the bottom to create a better society. >> here is the problem. the prevailing argument against
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raising the minimum wage is it will stifle hiring, drive up the prices. so how do you counter that? >> what really stimulated me to do this is last sunday there was a fabulous piece in "the new york times" by a young economist at the university of massachusetts. he's done an enormous amount of work. i asked how to look at the local issue. he in two major studies with the college, leading labor economists in the world, found that raising the minimum wage doesn't hurt people, doesn't reduce employment in restaurant work, food preparation work, food service work and, in fact, in a new study coming out it lifts poverty or reduces poverty by a couple 3%. economists have long made the argument, yeah, people will lose work. maybe that was true when there were teenage kids working minimum wage. now we have people working to support families, working two or three minimum wage jobs. we have to do for the service
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worker, the walmart worker, fast food worker what we did for the auto worker and steel worker. not only is it important for equality. if we want economic growth. people talk about lifting demand. we need more demand to get the economy primed. how do we lift demand? the federal government can spend as much as it wants building roads. we have to create a middle class. setting a humane, decent wage floor -- $10 isn't enough. go to $15 and in some cases $20. that's humane and decent. that's where what the workers need to be in middle class again. >> look at what ctac did raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour. is it feasible nationwide? >> i hope to god our country can do this. none of us likes being in a third world nation. i call it the 66%, not the 99. a third of us are doing pretty good. media people, knowledge workers,
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managers, college educated. but 66% of us is a lot sinking through. there is no job for a guy like my dad with with a 7th grade education, italian-american. had a job in a factory. he bought a house, put myself and my brother through high school and college. we don't have jobs like that for service workers. they are right on. that wage in the airport area is about exactly what 50% or 60% of the t median wage. people say the mayors have to lead, right? that washington is dysfunctional, mayors have to lead. cities are the laboratories of innovation. this is something mayors can do. they can say in new york, san francisco, san jose, chicago, i will lift it up. bill de blasio should raise the minimum wage in new york and drive people into the middle class. it's something we have to do. >> i will pick up on your statement that you are an
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urbanist. i want to get to your article in which it talks about people disillusioned to suburban life flocking to the big cities. why is suburban living ending its appeal? >> i wrote a book called "not a great recession, not a great depression, a great reset." the financial times had a piece today. it's not peak oil. it's peak car. people are going broke buying the big house. they have to consume a lot of energy and a big gas bill. they have to own two, three, four, five cars if they have kids. they are tired of going broke. they want a better life. especially the younger generation, the millennials and the baby boomers retiring. they want to go back to a denser way of life in the core city. i talked about the hotly valued areas are the older urban burbs. places like bethesda, maryland,
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or alexandra, virginia. montclair, new jersey. birmingham, michigan, outside of detroit. walkable burbs close to downtown where people can live and work and don't have to depend on a car to get the to work. that's where the urban burbs are more attractive and going back to minimum wage it's driving the cost of living and prices up. >> all right, richard, i bet you are a hell of a professor. i would like to take a class if you. come back sometime. >> great being with you. >> martin fletcher on a trip he took in the '70 that would never happen today. that's in office politics. ♪ love...
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to share with family. [ woman 2 ] to carry on traditions. [ woman 3 ] to come together even when we're apart. [ male announcer ] in stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy and more, swanson makes holiday dishes delicious. wears off. [ female announcer ] stop searching and start repairing. eucerin professional repair moisturizes while actually repairing very dry skin. the end of trial and error has arrived. try a free sample at eucerinus.com. new details emerging about the school shooting friday and how much violence the 18-year-old shooter intended to inflict. joining me now from arapahoe high school in colorado, ron mott.
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good day to you. it appears carl pearson intended to shoot many more people than he did. >> reporter: the police say he was after this debate coach. they say he came here prepared to hurt a lot of people. he had the shotgun with him. a machete and other things. the terror here was over quickly. it started at 12:33 and was over 80 seconds later start to finish. a community gripped in shock and sadness gathered to pray for 17-year-old senior claire davis, the lone shooting victim at arapahoe high school, shot in the head at point blank range randomly, police suspect by carl pearson who stormed into the school after 12:30 making no effort to hide the pump action shotgun he legally bought a week before. looking for the school's debate coach, said to be his intended target. >> i'm carl pearson, a freshman the at arapahoe high school in littleton. he was regarded as a talented
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debater who voiced strong political views and was kicked off the team. >> his intent was evil. >> the sheriff refused to mention him by name and said the student was armed with a machete, multiple rounds of ammo and three molotov cocktails. >> he victimized an intent young lady with an act of evil. he deserves no note rioriety an celebrity. >> reporter: he fired five shots including one that ended his life. some of the chaos was captured on a cell phone from inside the classroom. >> we have several kids. >> all right. >> reporter: as well as in police dispatches. >> i have a student down in the athletic hall. >> reporter: students are accustomed to training drills and thought for a moment this was just another one. >> hits home. it didn't feel real until you see everybody and this really did happen. >> reporter: we checked in with
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the hospital for an update on claire davis's condition. no change. she's listed in critical condition. in a few hours another vigil is planned in her honor. alex? >> thank you very much for that. from there to washington and the budget deal that heads now to the senate for a test vote on tuesday. today the key lawmakers who negotiated the deal say it opens up the potential for future agreements on other issues. they talked about why it was important to work together. >> i know what i think. i know what i think is the right thing to do. getting a budget agreement that reduce it s the deft denver sit without raising taxes and prevents government shutdowns is the right thing and a good thing to do. >> i come here with passionate things i care about. chairman ryan comes with passionate things. if we just sit in our corners and yell at each other and that's all we get rewarded for, we'll never get to the big discussions about tax reform, strengthening entitlements, or
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immigration reform. >> joining me now is political editor for the grio, berry bacon, jr. i'm listening to the comments. do you think the budget deal waves the way for crucial issues? >> i don't. i appreciate the enthusiasm. i watched the interviews and thought it was good they were working together. the two parties are divided. one reason why this deal was reached is they took away into the major issues. ryan and murray decided not to go for anything big. no tax increases. no social security. no medicare. if you take down the big issues they are divided on, yes, you can reach an agreement. it leaves the big issues still unresolved. >> they are putting their feelings out there. as you are aware there are a growing number of republicans in the senate coming out against the deal. here is what democratic senator dick durbin said about getting enough republican votes.
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>> we have a handful but we need more. some are still thinking about it. over the weekend i talked to one or two of them in the process. the it is a tough vote for them because of the tea party threat. >> is that tea party threat strong enough to block it in the senate? >> it could. there are 55 democrats and most of them will sign onto the this deal. you need five republicans. you have only john mccain right now. one republican who said he's for the deal. you have a problem where senators like mitch mcconnell are worried about the challenge. you have people like rand paul, marco rubio who are either opposed to the deal and looking forward to running for president. this is the deal that conservatives don't like. if you are appealing to the conservative base of the t party, voting no is a smart thing to do. >> the house passing the budget proposal. was with it 332-94? >> right. >> there are democrats critical of it. what are their concerns?
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>> the big issue is unemployment benefits for millions of americans are due to expire january 4. 1.3 million americans. their concern is it should have been include in the deal. you have democrats concerned about it. most in the senate will vote for the deal. they are not happy for that reason. also it locks in the cuts in the sequester and the democrats were with opposed to it from the beginning. >> want to look at your latest article. president obama's shift from compromise to confrontation is paying dividends. >> two things happened in washington this week. the first was the budget deal in the house which we talked about. the second was the senate s passed a lot of nominees. people president obama wanted. those things happened for two reasons n. the senate, things move fast thor because the democrats change the rules to where 51 instead of 60 senators
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are required to pass most things in terms of nominees. it was something president obama fought for. the republicans strongly opposed and rather than trying to compromise which is obama's instinct pushed the democrats to change the rules, which is a bold action. in the house, this budget deal passed in part because republica republicans were wary of the government shutdown because they view it as a loss for the gop politically. >> they have seen the numbers. >> exactly. >> thank you so much. >> we begin today's list of the most significant in history. it looks at how wick with paid i can't pages impact popular opinion. number one, jesus christ, then napoleon and william shax fear. prophet muhammed, abraham lincoln, george washington, hitler, aristotle, alexander the great and thomas jefferson. the housing market continues to recover. we look at zillow's list of the healthiest housing markets for
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october. it's a california dream housing market with san jose, san francisco, l.a. and san diego as the four best markets based on rapidly rising home values. denver in fifth with the lowest foreclosure rate. looking for a job? glass door.com unveiled the 50 best places to work. the rankings come from employee surveys. bain and company first, then twitter and linkedin. and the second hobbit movie is projected to earn up to $73 million for the weekend. the day building a play set begins with a surprise twinge of back pain... and a choice. take up to 4 advil in a day or 2 aleve for all day relief. [ male announcer ] that's handy. ♪ [ male announcer ] that's handy. if hey breathing's hard.me, know the feeling? copd includes emphysema and chronic bronchitis.
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york. 16 inches in maine where snow is still falling and weather channel's paul goodloe is in the center of it. i like the skiing but if you're driving, not so much. >> or just reporting on it, not so much. i would like to be on a board or skis. not yet. still work to do. this is the good side of the winter storm. this is powder. light, fluffy, dry. the wind is kicking up. it's drifting and blowing. not the best out here. it's cold. single tigt temperatures and the wind chill making it easily well below zero. the lions have been steady for the super quad. i'm at sugarloaf in maine. they have picked up at least a foot and a half of snow at the top of the mountain. measured a couple inches to at least a foot. it's been flowing for the last 12 to almost 13 hours now. this is the good side of the latest winter storm. we are ten days before
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christmas. this is a christmas present that came early for business owner this is the area and people who are coming for the holiday. the big thing is the temperature. can i ask you a question? >> sure. >> it's cold out here. >> i just got back from mexico on friday. >> reporter: a big flip flop in temperatures. >> 85 degrees colder. >> reporter: it's 5 or 6 out here. how howe do you deal? >> three layers on. keep your face covers. >> reporter: are you from the area? >> yeah. i live in maine. i stay here all winter. >> reporter: zscale of 1 to 10, what's this? >> 7 or 8. it will help them for the standards. >> reporter: a foot and a half is a 7? you have high standards. thank you. stay warm. this is a great storm for most people out here. again, the timing can't be perfect early in the season. >> i'll tell you how he stays warm. he gets skiing, keeps moving. all right. thank you very much. in today's office politics nbc's martin fletcher, foreign correspondent for 35 years. i asked him to share details
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about his most difficult assignment, three weeks walking the hindu kush mountain tail. fist i asked about his four books, the most recent two being novels. >> they both came out of my reporting in a sense. the list is set in london in 1945 and is about jewish refugees getting on after the holocaust. "jacob's oath" is the same issue set in germany in 1945. the relationship between the novels and my work as a journalist, i was always looking for the story that told the bigger story. i would always meet people on the worst day of their lives. that was my job for 35 years. the question i had apart from the daily reporting was, what do you do now? how do you get on with the rest of your life after your child's been killed or after all the terrible things that happened for everyone is this that was
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always the question i had. that brought me to my own family which was wiped out in the holocaust. my parents and their generation. how did they get on with the rest of their lives? it fascinates me today. they are heroes, the people who pick up the pieces and carry on. i don't know how you do it. >> you walked the mountains in afghanistan in the '80s when the soviets were at war with afghanistan. osama bin laden helped to fund it. back then when you heard about him could you have envisioned the role he would play a couple of decades later? >> yes. not him personally. but when i walked across the mountains from pakistan to afghanistan with the group that became the taliban, it was a three-week trip, the hardest thing i have done by far. every night they were trying to convert me to islam. they knew i was jewish, i told
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them. every night they were trying to convert me to islam through the interpreter. they all said the west is our real target. we can liberate afghanistan and this is just the beginning. i didn't imagine flying planes into the world trade center or osama bin laden achieving what he achieved. but it was very clear then that the west was the real target. >> how do you get an assignment like that? how do you infiltrate them to walk for three weeks across the hindu kush? >> wouldn't happen today. >> which award means the most to you? you have five emmys, a dupont award, an award from the british royal academy of television for camera work with. >> that was the one that means the most. definitely. >> really? the camera work? >> i won for it for horrific moment. it was the -- probably the formative moment in my career as a journalist and as a person.
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we got caught in a mine field. i was working and a bbc camera man was tired and wanted the day off. i worked with them for a day. we got caught in a mine field. 11 journalists and four cars literally drove into a mine field. my sound man was killed next to me. i filmed another guy who was my very close friend. he went to help ted. as i was filming him, he got blown up, trod on a land mine. the assignment correspondent was blown up. everybody was getting blown up. shrapnel all over the place. >> were you waiting to be blown up? >> i was in shock. i realized later and i was shaking so much i couldn't hold the. camera steady. at a certain point i got it
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under control. by the time paul trod on it, i filmed him being blown up. when he woke up in hospital, the first thing he said was where's the film? you see him looking at the camera, sees me filming. looks in the lens and got blown up. he remembers it. that won the award. >> you talk about having interviewed people who have over come horrific things and moved forward. that's what you find interesting. take that mirror and turn it on yourself. yeah. >> i never i did. good point. thank you. next weekend we'll bring your holiday themed office politics starring my on-air colleagues. why the wheels of justice are turning faster in the case
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now to south carolina and the push to clear the name of a 14-year-old nearly 70 years after he became the youngest person executed in the u.s. in the 20th century. in 1944, george stinney, jr., was sentenced to the electric chair for the murder of two white girls. the court could decide this month based on a new trial. todd johnson has been following the story for two years. give me a quick set-up. >> where we are now is this case, like you said, 70 years ago, this young who by so many was seen to have been wrongfully executed. now the law firm filed a motion in to grant him a new trial and a chance to legally exonerate him, a chance to clear his name. the momentum is building, as you said. a date has been set in south carolina.
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the paper of record is reporting that a date, january 21, has been set for a judge the motion and either deny or grant a new trial for the young boy and possibly clear his name. >> this were no witnesses. couldn't his family testify on his behalf? >> there were no witnesses called on his behalf in 1944. the trial lasted a few hours. he had a brother and a sister who were with him at the time who weren't called to testify when the sentence of electrocution was put down there was no appeal filed. the jury deliberated for ten minutes. 83 dais later stinney was executed. >> the family were concerned for their own safety. >> they had to leave town in south carolina that same night. there were people that were upset about the girls being murdered that wanted to put the law in their own hands. their safety was in question. >> interestingly you spoke with a man who said he shared a cell with the boy before he was executed. listen let's listen to that. >> he said, johnny, i didn't do
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it. i didn't do it. he said, why would they want to kill me for something i didn't do? >> is he credible? can testimony from that man have bearing on this case? >> what's fascinating is i know i spoke with you about the stinney case a few weeks ago. since then that man, wilford hunter, stepped forward and said i have been living with this for 70 years. he remembers when the 95-year-old geor95-pound george stinney came in. he had dreams about the electric chair for a long time. he moved to and lived in thork for 60 years or so. the lawyers in the case have interviewed this man since we posted our video story on thegrio.com. he provided a witness affidavit. no witness withes, not a lot of physical evidence, if any. this man's story could definitely strengthen the case and the push for a new trial. >> i'm glad you are covering it.
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come on back next month to let us know what happens when it gets under way. >> thank you, alex. that's a wrap of this hour of "weekends with alex witt." up next, "taking the hill" with patrick murphy. [ male announcer ] it's simple physics... a body at rest tends to stay at rest... while a body in motion tends to stay in motion. staying active can actually ease arthritis symptoms. but if you have arthritis, staying active can be difficult. prescription celebrex can help relieve arthritis pain so your body can stay in motion.
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good afternoon. welcome to "taking the hill." i'm patrick murphy. ahead today one of the most partisan clashes in america and one of the most anticipated days of the year for the american military -- the army-navy game. i spent the day outside the stadium in the stands and on the sidelines. i will bring you binds snapshots of the game's rich traditions. first, the second installment of "wounded, the battle back home" produced in part by the wounded warrior project. highlighted in this episode, retired iraq war

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