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tv   The Daily Rundown  MSNBC  December 19, 2013 6:00am-7:01am PST

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over the course of a year plus. >> he's a great guy. >> great guy. >> you are not going to take responsibility her makeover. >> for it's way too early, it's "morning joe." because he is 20 feet from us, here's chuck todd. we are so well lined up. it's made for television. here's chuck. >> three years after protests in the middle east, fighting rages in syria and the outlook is anything but certain. an interesting check in there. a new report told president obama to have more oversight and limits on the national security agency. privacy concerns change the spotting game.
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if max bacchus heads to chinas as the next ambassador, will that give democrats a leg up to replace him and the race to hold on to controlling the senate. this is "the daily rundown" and also today a deep dive into the concussion headlines that are changing the game for pros and for kids. let's get to the first reads of the morning, three years ago this week. we saw the beginning of the arab spring. it began as a movement that shook more than a dozen countries in the mideast and ch challenging regimes that had been in place for deck'ses. december 1235e7bth, 2010 th 17tt a man set himself on fire in an
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act of protest. it set off a revolution there and across the region. poor living conditions and a lack of influence, tunesians rally for democratic elections and in mid-january after failing to placate the protesters, the president fled his country. the first political casualty. that revolution touched off similar protests in egypt and yemen. against egypt's long time strong man, they broke out across the country and they wanted mubarak gone. they were not ready to cut ties just yet. >> i'm not going to get into either or choices. it's not a question of who retains power. that should not be the issue. how are we going to respond to the legitimate needs and grievances expressed by the egyptian people and chart a new path? >> at the same time aspect
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government protests were breaking out in yemen, one of the poorest countries in the arab world. thousands marched calling for the ouster of the president back in egypt. protests in tahrir square. february 11th mubarak and his family fled cairo touching off nationwide celebrations. it led to demonstrations in bahrain and libya. then protests in syria by march. in the kingdom, a crack down managed to keep the leadership in power. the syrian president tried a similar protest. back home, the obama administration did not want to get ahead too quickly. >> let me be clear. the change that is taking place across the region is being driven by the people of the region. >> the u.s. would be drawn in when anti-government militia
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seized the city touching off widespread protests against america's adversary, but recent semi ally gadhafi. the u.s. and france and britain helped lead a nato effort that protected rebels on the middle ground for president obama. keep the u.s. from getting sucked in. they were criticized for failing to take a stronger stand. >> the president of the united states, i believe should have gone in with our air power and not given it to nato because -- >> not leading from behind? >> exactly. the point is that if we do not continue this effort in libya, if gadhafi remains in power, it could have profound consequences. >> the civil war dragged in and following a two-month siege,
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gadhafi was captured and killed. many agreed to hand over power, setting the stage for new elections and he was the last of four leaders. several others in places like morocco, algeria and jordan by a mix of social reform. the spasms of social unrest faded and the effects are still being felt in egypt. they arrested mohamed morsi, but after he expanded, new protests broke out and they forced morsi out in july in a kooup after he was arrested after mubarak stepped down. now it's a full-fledged civil war. now claimed more than 100,000 lives as rebel forces and the assad regime wage an all or nothing battle for the country. in damascus, we have a lot more
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on this fallout three years later. of all of the arab countries, the longest now running full-fledged war is where you are in syria here. >> that's right. they have seen the arab spring play out as much as you described across north africa. what happened here was not the end that you saw in other places. you saw dictators overthrown and in libya you saw a wall and gadhafi overthrown there of course. what happened here is that an up rising that began in march of 2011 with ordinary people coming out into the streets and saying they wanted to overthrow president assad has gradually
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descended into this civil war with an outside player intervening on a geopolitical level and nation states and russia and chine and iran. the u.s. and europe and the saudis on the other. on the ground at the same time you have seen increasingly extreme groups joining the opposition forces. extremists said today were behaving in the most blood curdling way and imprisoning children of 8 years old and executing people. the report said that's what's going on on the opposition side and at the same time they reported by the un. they said that president assad's
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forces are behaving a short distance from where i am here. there were areas of damascus under siege. the government is accused of using starvation, if you like. certainly hunger is a weapon of war. >> how much control does assad have with his country? >> good question. that's not a question that is easy to answer. this is an opaque government in terms of trying to understand how things work. in damascus, there is rumor and a city of war. you walk around the streets here and you hear explosions and gunfire. you see people who are having to get food for themselves. they are talking about having to feed millions. the crisis is unfolding. a lot of people's attention is here and they are not on that
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kind of question, but trying to survive. it is difficult to assess. in terms of the way the situation is now. the one thing we can say is that we know that there talks planned for next month. that president assad's government said they will be involved in the talks and at the same time you have the west looking to the opposition that is divide and i'm trying to figure out who should go to the talks on the other side. >> that's a big question from damascus for us and nbc news. thank you very much. for three years, they began one of the implications for the middle east. the bloomberg view. the director and president of the wilson woodrow center. start with syria here and describe this peace process.
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we know who is going to represent the assad site. what is unclear is apparently there will be at least a peace conference to at least negotiate something or start a conversation. who represents the other side? >> we better focus on that. the best out come is where ba shar is pushed out and they could include that. >> part of the government? >> a part of the assad tries to survive. i don't know about people with a lot of blood on their hands. let's not be purists. this is not an arab spring. i'm in california. the tech tonic plates have shifted and the states like yemen and maybe like libya, it may not be one nation state anymore. they could splinter and that's possible in afghanistan and iraq. >> that's the british government. >> that's right.
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>> the most important thing of all the things in the united states, we were not. >> we should learn it's much easier to build them down than build up in government. >> you have spent a lot of time and had this interview that to me resonates. he almost admitted he would be the last monarch. a lot stronger and benevolent. i never know what to say he is. >> a strong man. >> he survived through this. what is the lesson that others can get from him to say -- what should be the leaders of the gulf states. what lesson should they take? >> he's done a couple of clever things and weirdly the situation helped him in the following sense. the people of jordan, many are
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unhappy with him and the way things are in jordan. look at syria and say god forbid. we will keep ourselves together here and not go with the streets in the same way. he has a lighter touch than a lot of the other arab rulers who are no longer on the scene. we managed to outfox the muslim brotherhood and has two great allies. he doesn't talk about it, but israel and the united states are there to support his government. if jordan goes, look at where he sits. >> for jordan goes there, it's there. >> the sucking sound. they fear that they should fear. >> it's interesting that the country that does not speaks it name. >> it has been out there making
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moves. >> they are involved in a lot. the up risings encould you remembering them or trying to stop them depending on the allies. >> the saudis are good to export the problems. do we forget this. >> in a way they thought to basically keep it away. >> there is a lesson for the saudi monarchy. they have to open up too. a couple more comments on jordan and syria. jordan has two million refugees in the country. a serious destabilizing force. >> the equivalent of having 30 million. or half of mexico. >> there 7 million refugees, many of them inside here. this is catastrophe. second of all, chemical weapons which is a good thing and a lot of people deserve credit. he must not be able to use that to purchase as a leader of the
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country. he's got go. >> you look at the arab spring and john kerry is focused on the process. i've heard some people wonder should president obama have stuck with mubarak or not. i heard from -- there is not a single president who would have done it differently. other administrations and veterans did what he did. no american period would be sitting on the side of the democratic protest. >> to be fair, he was put in an impossible position. for years mubarak did not listen to american who is said you have to lose them. he wasn't listening. there were a lot of people and no one is happy with american policy, but it's not the fault of america. you have the gulf states who say you throw mubarak over.
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then you have americans who have the democratic impulses saying why are you sticking with this guy in the 50 place. we are looking for fallout. this is a broad scale disaster. >> i heard that vice president biden discredited president obama saying this will be the next four presidents. >> i think so, but there a couple of spots if weren't an optimist, why would i serve in congress? there is an al qaeda problem, but the founder of the movement which took power in a fair election, i was one of the observers there, i know it was fair, but he took power and is yielding power to build a pluralist government. there shades of nelson mandela coming up. >> that's one big success story and maybe tunisia is.
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>> it's not that successful. >> i have to keep it here. it was an anniversary that somebody set themselves on fire. this man did it and it sparked probably the single most important historic event in the mideast maybe in the last 25 or 30 years. thank you. up next, calling for change. the new report on government surveillance programs. which of the reforms to the nsa will the president accept. a senate surprise. the risks and rewards to nominate the retiring senator to be the next ambassador to china. first a look ahead at the politics planner. you are watching "the daily rundown" only on msnbc. if i say that, rich eisen needs to know and he needs to be reminded that the hall of famer is sitting next to him and having a birthday today.
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under pressure to announce reforms to the national security agency in the data collection program, the president has big either or choices. on wednesday the white house released a report of 46 recommendations prepared boy a panel of outside advisers while civil liberties groups are applauding, they are greeting with skepticism and hostility. they stopped short of calling the program to be shut down. they said they should maintain the data other than the government. phone and internet would only be available with court orders,
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forcing them to show a legal cause for every instance it requires the information. they will allow phone companies to make the disclosure of customer data public. they remembered they should be split and led boy a civilian rather than an official and congressional oversight. they said the president and the advisers and not the intelligence should have to approve any spying on foreign leaders. that gives the government the authority to demand the records without a court order. they go further than legislation already in the works. democratic advocates in congress praised the panel's aggressiveness. >> the message is clear. the message to the nsa is coming from every branch of government and every corner of the nation.
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nsa, you have gone too far. >> senator rand paul said he was skeptical that anything passed would go far enough. >> the slappers wanting congress is more injurious to our capabilities than anything snowden did. i think what our government is doing is unconstitutional and thrd to restore confidence, i think he should resign. >> the top republican defended clapper and pointed out the president rejected one of the hospital's recommendations. >> he already rejected the nsa and think that's the right thing to do. this agency is too sensitive and it does things that the military does better than the private sector. >> the senior administration official said the president was open to many of the changes.
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he is expected to study them over the holidays and announce his decision next month. pete williams joins me now. you have been talking about the intelligence and administration. they look at these and we know he is going to have to take most of these, the top four he mentioned. some form of the internet companies having a lot more say. what are these images? >> there some who saw this coming and some say they ought to do this separately anyway to save all the other programs who they think some of them are -- do something big in area so that they don't have to with other stuff in. >> it's not without cost. if congress said the phone companies have to keep this data, they will have to pay them
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to do it. they have no business reason to keep these records for more than six months. they store them as a part of doing business. after that, after you pay the bill, they have no reason to keep them. >> other than to figure out how to market them. number one, the government would have to pay to store the data. it's expensive and figure out a way so that if a bad call starts a call and calls his friend on sprint, there is a way if the government doesn't have all that data, it can dance around between and still get to that. this is not without cost or intelligence cost and financial cost. >> this issue, i was surprised. i had the back and forth and there were people who think the idea of civilian control at the nsa is crazy. the same would be made for that. why do we have a civilian in charge of the pentagon. >> more to the point, the cia.
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a lot of the support is for the military. that's one of the reasons it exists. if you look at the legacy, that is the it played. it's law enforcement and anti-terrorism. >> there is an argument to be made with a different type of agency. >> all the intelligence agencies are. the cia's mission was to keep a check on the soviet union. the missions have changed and that is an interesting question to put a civilian in charge and give it more oversight. >> that's the other part of this. somehow congress will have more responsibilities on nsa. >> they will seek it. >> you would assume the minimum they have to go forward on that point. >> we will see. >> supposedly until he said the single most intellectually
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challenging problem he paid as president. >> i don't doubt that. >> thank you, sir. >> potential big break. how the pick of max bacchus to be the next ambassador to china shakes up the mid-term. today's trivia question, who was the most recent senator to become an ambassador to china. the first person to tweet the correct answer will get the on air shout out. the answer and more is coming up. bl stick with power. stick with technology. get the new flexcare platinum from philips sonicare and save now. philips sonicare.
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he was hoping to make the issue. you are right there. upside money wise. >> you had to see republicans make wash on everything about president obama. he's an outsider, you can say i'm not in washington. >> what's interesting about the appointed senator, before 2010, they had a horrible track record and you saw michael bennett and dean. of late, it seems like the senator statistic evened up.
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this this appointment will explain. >> we don't know what will end up happening. our sources on the senate side, the person who can become the next chairman heads the energy committee right now. that could allow mary landrieu to become the energy committee chair. >> is the issue of energy important? >> that would be a powerful message. we will see if they play out that way. >> max bacchus gives the democrats in a race they were behind in. mary landrieu who is struggling gets to say i have the gavel to the energy committee. look what i can do. this is old fashioned politics of the incumbent party. >> it seems like harry reid has been playing like this for a long time. >> season three house of cards. mark murray, thank you, sir.
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in the deep dive, the so-called concussion crisis is spread spreading. more big leagues are facing action. who is to blame? the new research and allegations in the pro sports and how states are trying to protect kids and that could have a trickle up effect. what scientists are discovering as they study the brains of pro athletes. fascinating findings up next only on msnbc.
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>> today's deep dive, we dig into what some call the concussion crisis. usually it is about football and research and lawsuits about brain damage. this was baseball and hockey. they made their own head injury headlines as well. researchers announced that the former utility player had the brain disease called cte.
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he committed suicide last year and he saint patrick's day at least concussions in his playing career. his mother said he just didn't feel right. >> he knew something was wrong with him. i think he gave up. he would say the last few months he was not going to get well. >> now jovan belcher's family his his body exhumed to examine his brain. he killed his girlfriend and himself last december. his family want to know did multiple concussions cause brain injury and essentially mess him up. >> he nails it. hard shot that time. time out. he lifts his head forward. >> the the players like this expect to take hits like that.
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it's part of the game. the late august, the nfl paid to settle a concussion lawsuit brought by 4500 players. they are not admitting liability and saying it's hard to tell how players were hurt. they announced $12 million will fund research on cte. experts can't diagnose the condition in a living person yet. but they spoke to three wife who is noticed a change in their husband's behavior already. >> the mood changes scared me. >> i'm so afraid he is going to hurt himself. >> we are here to help our husbands and families and i had folks that this can also help others. >> the players that retire after this. >> here's what researchers are looking for. the normal brain of a 65-year-old brain shows no abnormalities. compare that to a 45-year-old
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former football player's. what about hockey? the ten former players who sued the skpleeg said thleague and s promoted violence on the ice and promoted safety overtime with respect to head injuries and concussions. on the hill, there eight different bills related to concussio concussions. two in the house and the other in the committee in the house and the senate. none of that covers pro athletes. 31 states and the district have concussion-related laws. they are poised to pass similar laws. they open owners will agree to ban collisions, but his mom said playing hard was part of her son's success. >> if i don't play this way, no one will come to see me. people come to see me because i
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play this way. >> where do we stand when it comes to protecting players without changing the games? i am joined by a former cofounder of the legacy institute and boston university center and you saw in the run up who has been reporting on the latest developments for nbc. let me start with you. you have been studying this and baseball and other sports are concerned about this. are they concerned because they give attention or see this as a crisis moment for them. it's a mixed bag with commitment to the issue. right now at least for the nfl, there a lot of people who believe this is nothing short of a crisis for the league. they can't say they knew about
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it. what you have seen in recent years, a change in rules and the way they play during games and a change in the way they practice as well. the guys we interviewed who retired in the 80s and 90s, they say the practices were more violent than the games themselves. you don't have the hard hitting practices during the week. you have the rules where you can't get the players in certain players around their head. there is an awareness that is growing including the lives that we spoke to. >> no doubt that the leagues are seeing what the nfl just went through and are thinking about. let's talk about the science here. we are learning a lot more about cte. we had the news and the news that shook me up was tony a few weeks ago when he said what happened to him and you think okay, he is still alive.
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that's what has been a struggle being able to study the brains of living former athletes and seeing what they can learn and what can be figured out about how to deal with this. >> most of what we have learned is from studying the brains of former athletes. more have been studied and found them in the last five years. we know now this is more widespread than we thought in affecting people with different experiences from victims of abuse. the next step is will we have diagnostics soon that allow us to see this in living people. that will spur a lot of work towards finding a treatment for us. we feel we can slow it down or stop it when it started and prevent it from happening in the first place. any brain diseases are difficult to treat. our best hope is prevention. >> the issue of prevention goes
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to your perception becoming reality. we know that plenty of parents are going you know what, i won't let me kid play football. middle school football and high school. we know the issue is these players by the time they -- the first time they get to the nfl, they had ten years of play iing tackle football and might have cte. >> that is the question. it's a serious one. can people play football safely? that's the question that they are tackling now. the science changes. i will tell you, full disclosure. i am a big fan. i watch every sunday and covering the story has changed the way i watch football. i would imagine for parents of young kids who are deciding to play or who are already playing, it has changed their perception
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of the sport as well and run the risk of the league. that funnel of players and talent as the parents decide is not a safe game to play. >> are we going to get to the point where the nfl basically in all of major sports make every player sign a liability statement waving that you know there is a certain amount of violence that comes with the game and this is why we are paying you all this money now in exchange for you sacrificing years of your at the end of your life. >> certainly a possibility. athletes were never informed of this risk. you get up and you will be fine. you believe the medical experts and the sports leagues turned out not to be true. if we did say this was a consequences when you were a pro and older than 18, you are making a choice. that might be the future, but
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that drives a line saying kids can't take that form of risk. i think the answer is we need to change what kids are exposed to in terms of this in terms of adults. >> where should the reforms be? can it be trickle up or do they have to set the example or are we better off having states legislate what they can which is to say high school sports and that has an impact on little league and pop warner, et cetera? >> the state laws have been fantastic. you lock at this like seatbelts. train every kid when they are young and they will have a different appreciation and respect for concussions. last week they said maybe we should limit headers for children. maybe not introduce thousands of headers a year until you are in
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high school. it created a riot across europe. i think you need to open up our minds and maybe kids shouldn't be hit in the head hundreds of times every year while they are growing up. they are only responding to lawsuits. they are facing huge pressure. baseball sees that and they want to change the rule. that is forcing them to change. is it not? and it's not a coincidence. the lawsuits continue to come in and they are facing more. the settlement is not the end of it. >> not at all and it was a small -- arguably a smaller settlement than some say it should have been.
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chris has been doing this at work a long time. thank you very much. still to come, the message that the white house is sending to russia with the members of the olympic delegation. first the white house soup of the day. caldillo of brisket. maybe this is part of the leftovers that they make a soup out of. we'll be right back. bl ery eyes. ery eyes. [ sniffling ] the sniffling guy on the bus. and, of course, the snow angels with your little angels. that's why puffs plus lotion is soft. puffs plus are dermatologist tested to be gentle. they help soothe irritated skin by locking in moisture better. so you can always put your best face forward. a face in need deserves puffs indeed. but with less energy, moodiness, and a low sex drive,y first.
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date bank time. we'll start with 23 days. that's the number of days virginia governor bob mcdonald still has on the job and according to exclusive reporting by "the washington post," maybe the number of days he is charged with a federal crime. federal prosecutors told mcdonald and his wife that they would be charged in connection with the gift scandal. after an appeal with mcdonald's lawyers, they've delayed a
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decision until next year. five, the number of statewide offices the democrats hold in virginia for the first time since 1969 and will, republican mark ownen chain officially conceded to virginia's race. here's a doozy of a number. 56. that's the percentage point there. according to a new quinnipiac poll, a full 56% of pennsylvania voter their governor tom corbett does not deserve to be reelected. if this were a penn state game it would be a blowout and if it were a little league game they would call it. >> trivia time. jim sasser is the first to become u.s. ambassador to china. after he lost to bill frist that was his consolation prize. congratulations to the winner, bill goodman. send your answers to msnbc.com. we'll be right back. y breathing.
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time now for today's takeaway. america's ambassador to russia mike mcfall told me back in september that the u.s. would walk a diplomatic line on issues pertaining to the olympic games. while it's no secret that relationships between russia and the united states and specifically president obama and vladimir putin are not good at a post-cold war low, in fact, it seems those hard failings are spilling over into the upcoming winter olympics. for the first time since 2000, the u.s. delegation to the olympics will not include a member of the first family, or the vice president. the delegation to sochi will be led by the cabinet secretary which happens to be janet napolitano and two openly gay former athletes, billie jean king and cahow.
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the president's decision inadvertently snubs the athletes and that the olympic committee will somehow be hurt by this if it wants to host future games, but now at this point we'll see. it's going soon very interesting to watch this. will the 2014 games in the winter olympics be something of akin to '68 and social justice and things like that? we shall see. that's it for this edition of "the daily rundown." coming up next, chris jansing. bye-bye. ative colitis is a daily game of "what if's". what if my abdominal pain and cramps come back? what if the plane gets delayed? what if i can't hide my symptoms? what if? but what if the most important question is the one you're not asking? what if the underlying cause of your symptoms is damaging inflammation? for help getting the answers you need, talk to your doctor and visit crohnsandcolitisinfo.com to get your complimentary q&a book, with information from experts on your condition.
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that helps me, and my guys, make better decisions. i don't like guesses with my business, and definitely not with our health. innovations that work for you. that's health in numbers. unitedhealthcare. stick with innovation. stick with power. stick with technology. get the new flexcare platinum from philips sonicare and save now. philips sonicare. decision day. hillary clinton laying out a timeline for when she'll decide to run for the presidency. >> i haven't made up my mind. >> you haven't? >> i really have not. >> okay. she hasn't decided yet, but she says she will next year. the president hasn't even signed the bipartisan budget deal yet and there's already a fight to fix it. will congress restore the cuts
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to veterans benefits? we're also watching the stock market right now after yesterday's huge rally and record highs. we'll tell you what the fed decision manies for your mortgage, bank account and your retirement coming up. good morning, i'm chris jansing. this morning the president is weighing just how much to reshape the nsa and the way intelligence is gathered in this country. a report the president ordered was unequivocal in its conclusion that the u.s. should scale back the information swept up by the spying program. the 300-plus page report recommends ending government storage of data and turning over the logs of every american's phone calls to the phone companies to hold on to. it also suggests the president sign off on any spying of foreign leaders and while -- now known as fisa, green lights much of the spying the commission recommends that a public advocate push for privacy rights and in other words, that the secret courts hear

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