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In the Grip of the Flu; Newtown Shooting: One Month Later; Golden Globe Winners

Aired January 14, 2013 - 05:00   ET


ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN, CNN ANCHOR: Flu shot scramble. There is a run on vaccine on spots with an outbreak still gripping most of the nation.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: One month later. A day remembrance and a painful decision awaits the community of Newtown, Connecticut.

SAMBOLIN: A golden upset. Did you watch? And golden redemption. "Argo," the surprise winner of best picture at the Golden Globe Awards.

BERMAN: Argo, wean yourself. Have you seen "Argo"?

SAMBOLIN: I haven't seen it yet. So I have to.

BERMAN: It's good.

SAMBOLIN: All right. Welcome to EARLY START. I'm Zoraida Sambolin.

BERMAN: And I'm John Berman. It is Monday, January 14, 5:00 a.m. in the East.

And, first up, man, we're talking about the flu. All but three states in the group of this flu epidemic. The CDC says the only state spared widespread flu are California, Hawaii and Mississippi. In New York, getting a flu shot is becoming tougher and tougher. There's been a run on the vaccine at some pharmacies and urging care centers since Governor Andrew Cuomo declared a public health emergency.

Senior medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen joins us now.

And, Elizabeth, what do exactly health officials mean when they use the word epidemic?

ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: You know, it gets very wonky and very technical. So, I'm going to boil it down here.

So, John, basically, what it means is that people are getting sick and dying from the flu in certain numbers. When those numbers get high enough, we call it an epidemic. Now, I personally don't really care that much about that word and I'll tell you why.

The flu season nearly always reaches epidemic levels. Even if it's just like a moderate plain old, you know, normal season. So I think we shouldn't get focused too much on that word. We -- instead, we should focus on what we're seeing here which is what can you do to avoid getting the flu, which is getting a flu shot and doing things like washing your hands and staying away from people who look sick -- John.

BERMAN: It doesn't feel like just a normal flu season here. I have to tell you. A lot of people sick here in the office.

COHEN: Absolutely not.

BERMAN: A lot of people sick where I live.

Governor Cuomo has declared a public health emergency. So since we're talking about terminology, what does that mean?

COHEN: Let me go back to what you said before. This is absolutely not, from what we can tell at this point a normal flu season. This is looking more like a moderate to severe flu season.

What I'm saying is almost every year we have an epidemic. So, people are freaking out a little bit about the use of this word. It is almost every year, nearly every year, there is an epidemic. So, that's why I don't get too into that word.

Anyhow, getting to what Governor Cuomo did. So, Governor Cuomo said there is a state of public health emergency. He's telling pharmacies, hey, guess what? Usually in other years we tell you don't vaccinate kids. You're not allowed to vaccinate kids. They have to go to their doctor for that.

This year, he said, go ahead and vaccinate kids. They're telling pharmacies they can do that.

But it's interesting. We put out several phone calls to -- many phone calls to pharmacies in New York and the pharmacies we called, none of them are offering shots to kids. They said, look, we're just -- we don't usually offer shots to kids. We're not going to offer shots to kids.

Now, in addition, these same pharmacies said they didn't really have enough even for adults. They were running out of shots kind of for everyone. But it's interesting that even though they can offer shots to kids, they've chosen not to.

BERMAN: And as you said, adults having a hard time getting it, too. I know Zoraida had a hard time getting a shot when she went looking. My wife had a hard time getting a shot.

Governor Cuomo, we saw him getting a shot there. He got a lollipop after his shot so we're happy for him.

Elizabeth Cohen, thanks for helping us with this, this morning. As we said, this is affecting a lot of people around the country right now. Thanks for staying on top of it.

COHEN: Thanks. SAMBOLIN: You know, John, I have to tell you, I did check to see where they were giving the flu shots. I went to CVS. They said that, by today, they should have a new supply of shots. And the independent pharmacies said by Tuesday.

So, if you're looking for one, hopefully you can still get one.

Three minutes past the hour. Now to Newtown, Connecticut, where it's been exactly one month since the massacre that was felt around the world. It will be a day of remembrance for the 20 children and six adults were gunned down at the Sandy Hook Elementary School. That shooting has sparked a national debate over guns and gun violence.

In Newtown, Connecticut, the fate of the school building itself is a very delicate subject. It was debated at a public forum last night.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My 3-year-old thinks his school is broken and that we're going to fix it, and, personally, my own opinion is, I don't want to se the land and the building stay empty and broken. I want to do something with it, whether it be a memorial park, I would support, whether it be building a new safer school with top security.


SAMBOLIN: CNN's Susan Candiotti is live in Newtown.

And, Susan, what does the community want to do? I think saying this is a delicate subject is totally understating it.

SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Oh, sure. And, you know, Zoraida, we are beginning to hear a variety of opinions. First of many public hearings, forums here in Newtown that will be held on this subject about the future of Sandy Hook Elementary. And we heard from a number of speakers, including a lot of parents of Sandy Hook Elementary, students who are going temporarily anyway to another school.

And some parents very passionately spoke about tearing down the school saying it's just hard, too frightening for the children to go back. And even for teachers, too.

Yet, other parents said, no, we should rebuild, put a memorial there as a sign of strength -- strength that you see al over this town.


CANDIOTTI (voice-over): St. Rose of Lima Church lost nine of its youngest members at Sandy Hook. A vigil drew thousands that first night. And then there were the funerals.

RICK SCINTO, DEACON, ST. ROSE OF LIMA CHURCH: I was this far away from the families. It was palpable what they were going through.

CANDIOTTI (on camera): How well are people healing? SCINTO: There is still a lot of pain, a lot of grief. When it's going to go away, I don't know. It might not ever go away.

CANDIOTTI (voice-over): Arriving daily to ease that pain, something that astounds the deacon Rick Scinto and fellow parishioners.

(on camera): It's a month later. What are these boxes doing here?

SCINTO: These are the gifts. These are letters. These are prayer cards coming in from all over the country, all over the world.

CANDIOTTI (voice-over): Thousands of pieces of mail carefully sorted for each victim, including the shooter's mother and the killer himself.

(on camera): What is this all a sign of?

SCINTO: This is the world putting their arm around Newtown and saying, "We're here for you" in some way.

CANDIOTTI (voice-over): Like a huge banner that reads "We are with you, Newtown", filled with signatures hanging from an overpass. It's all the way from Tucson, Arizona, the site of the Gabby Giffords mass shooting.

Down the street from the elementary school, a bouquet marks the spot with a makeshift memorial once stood, now dismantled, composted, preserved for a permanent memorial.

In this community, people turn to each other for strength. Many with the same question.

SCINTO: The main questions of why? Why did this happen? How did this happen?

CANDIOTTI: Seeking answers no one may ever have.


CANDIOTTI: And for, now, no perfect answer on what to do about Sandy Hook Elementary -- Zoraida.

SAMBOLIN: And, Susan, Newtown families are also having some conversations, difficult conversations, about the future of gun laws in the wake of this tragedy. Is there any consensus on what they want to see changed, if anything at all?

CANDIOTTI: I would say it's too early to have a consensus on these things. But certainly, a large number of people are calling for stricter measures, including a ban on assault weapons and high capacity magazines.

I spoke with a mayor yesterday and she said, you know, now is the time for change.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) MAYOR SETTI WARREN, NEWTOWN, CONNECTICUT: The horror of knowing that these are innocent 6 and 7-year-olds who were so harmed and killed by a man who had a flaw in his judgment and had access to an assault weapon and other weapons as well. So, I think it's -- for many people like me I've long been an advocate of better controls over access to those kinds of weapons, this simply elevates our passion on that issue.


CANDIOTTI: And later this morning, in the town hall behind me, there's going to be a news conference held by a group called Sandy Hook Promise. We expect to hear some speakers, possibly relatives of some of the Sandy Hook victims who will be weighing in on the subject of gun control as well. Many people calling for stricter measures -- Zoraida.

SAMBOLIN: Susan Candiotti, we really appreciate having you live in Newtown, Connecticut, this morning. Thank you.

And later this hour, we'll talk with Stephen Barton, who was wounded in the Aurora, Colorado, shooting, and Lori Haas, her daughter was shot during the rampage at Virginia Tech.

And Soledad O'Brien will be live in Newtown for "STARTING POINT" this morning. That is beginning at 7:00 Eastern Time.

BERMAN: And one month to the day since at the tragedy in Newtown, Vice President Joe Biden and other top officials will meet with members of House of Representatives this morning in a continued effort to gather policy proposals on gun violence. The vice president's final recommendations are expected to be announced on Tuesday.

SAMBOLIN: Also, in the House of Representatives, debate begins today on two bills that address superstorm Sandy relief. Congress passed more than $9 billion in aid last week. But the states and president are asking for another $50 billion. One of the House plans, however, calls for just $17 billion in what it calls emergency aid.

BERMAN: The week getting off to a really soggy start in some parts of the country. Thick fog here this morning.


BERMAN: Heavy rain and flooding wash out roads in parts of west Tennessee. Public schools and at least three counties are closed today because buses couldn't get to the students.

And the National Weather Service saying an EF-tornado hit near Paducah, Kentucky, on Saturday. It destroyed one church and blew the steeple off another.

We want to check in with Alexandra Steele right now to get a lowdown on what's going on today.

Hey, Alexandra. ALEXANDRA STEELE, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Hi. Good morning to you guys.

Well, here it is. Here's the cold front. And along it is all the rain. So, you saw that flooding in western Tennessee. Now that rain is in eastern Tennessee. It's along and ahead of a cold front. It is all moving eastward. But, you know, a lot of variety of weather happening be it the fog in the Northeast, dense fog advisories there until 8:00 this morning.

Here's the wet weather. It will just be predominantly a morning affair. Things will clear out through the afternoon. So, travel a lot better then. But all the way, look at that from Maine all the way down to the Mid-Atlantic, Washington and the Delmarva have some fog. But, really, the story, the temperatures, incredibly dramatic, right?

You find to play game, find the front. Here it s there is only one little pocket of warmth here. They're wearing shorts in Atlanta, Georgia and parkas in Los Angeles. That's how cold. And here is where the cold air is. High today in Denver, 13 degrees. Salt Lake City, only 12. So, about 20 to 25 degrees below average.

But today is kind of the lowest it's going to go. We will modify a little bit. Salt Lake gets up into the mid 20s by Wednesday. Vegas, everywhere in the West very cold.

But temperatures will modify. But a big variety of weather, guys, around the country today.

SAMBOLIN: All right. Alexandra Steele, thank you very much.

Eleven minutes past the hour. The Super Bowl picture is almost set. Somebody is gloating this morning.

The four teams are left standing this morning. In Foxborough, New England beat Houston, 41-28. They earned a spot in the AFC championship game.

You want to chime in?

BERMAN: You know, they were fantastic.

SAMBOLIN: The Patriots got a huge performance from running back Shane Vereen. He scored three times. Not bad for third stringer who's scored four touchdowns all year before Sunday. Tom Brady has now won more play-off games than any NFL quarterback. He passed his idol Joe Montana.

BERMAN: Any quarterback ever in history, we should say.

And Atlanta --

SAMBOLIN: I think I just say that.

BERMAN: The Atlanta Falcons, they came this close to blowing a huge lead but they didn't thanks to that Matt Bryant field goal with no time left. They won 30-28. Atlanta blew a pair of 20-point leads. Seattle just kept coming back.

Really, you know, it honestly looked like Seattle would win. They jumped ahead with 31 seconds left. But Bryant hit that field goal. Here it is again, the time running out to win the game for them.

So the Falcons will host the NFL championship game at home for the first time. So congratulations to them.

SAMBOLIN: All right. So here is your play-off picture. Two teams will punch their Super Bowl tickets next week, Atlanta plays San Francisco at the Georgia dome for the NFC championship. And New England hosts the Ravens for the AFC title.

This will be a rematch of last year's title game which was won by who?

BERMAN: The Patriots won that. They went on to lose in the Super Bowl. I should say the Patriots' great tight end Rob Gronkowski who had broken his arm earlier in the season, broke his arm again yesterday.


BERMAN: He's out for the rest of the playoffs. So, you know, it will be a tough haul for the Patriots.

SAMBOLIN: That could be a problem.

BERMAN: You know, everyone is pulling for them to win this weekend.

SAMBOLIN: Not everyone, but --

BERMAN: Speaking of other winners and losers, in an evening with a lot of winners, it was Jodie Foster who was the talk of the Golden Globes. We're going to tell you why, coming up.

Plus, Lance Armstrong, on the verge of making a TV confession. The latest word on his upcoming Oprah interview. We'll have that coming up, too.


BERMAN: Welcome back to EARLY START, everyone.

The 70th Golden Globe Awards had a surprise ending. Ben Affleck's "Argo" beating out the presumptive favorite "Lincoln" for best dramatic motion picture. And there was a bit of redemption for Affleck, too. Actually, it was in your face redemption. He won the best director prize just days after being snubbed for an Oscar nomination that many thought was a sure thing.

CNN's Nischelle Turner with more on the big winners and best moments from the Golden Globes.


AMY POEHLER, ACTRESS: It's getting sloppy in here, everybody. TINA FEY, ACTRESS: Look at how drunk Glenn Close is.

NISCHELLE TURNER, CNN ENTERTAINMENT CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The Golden Globes are usually one big, irreverent party. And co-hosts Amy Poehler and Tina Fey kept the zingers coming for the ceremony's 70th anniversary.

POEHLER: Kathryn Bigelow nominated tonight. When it comes to torture, I trust the lady who spent three years married to James Cameron.

TURNER: The drinks and jokes were flowing, but there were, you know, awards to be handed out. And guess who had the best reason to celebrate?


TURNER: The Iran hostage thriller "Argo" earned the night's biggest prize, best drama and director Ben Affleck who didn't receive an Oscar nomination this year was a winner as well.

BEN AFFLECK, ACTOR/DIRECTOR: I don't care what the award is. When they put your name next to the names she just read off, it's an extraordinary thing in your life.

TURNER: "Lincoln's" Daniel Day-Lewis and "Zero Dark Thirty's" Jessica Chastain took the top acting awards and both saluted their directors, Steven Spielberg and Kathryn Bigelow.

DANIEL DAY-LEWIS, ACTOR: Steven Spielberg, you've given me an experience that I will treasure until the end of my life.

KATHRYN BIGELOW, ACTRESS: Kathryn Bigelow, you've done more for women in cinema than you take credit for.

TURNER: No misery at the "Les Miserables" table. The film won best musical or comedy and earned honors for first time Globe winner Hugh Jackman and supporting actress Ann Hathaway.

ANN HATHAWAY, ACTRESS: Thank you for this blunt object. But I will forevermore use as a weapon against self-doubt.

TURNER: On the TV side, Showtime's "Homeland" took top drama honors. "Girls" won comedy series and a best actress Golden Globe for its creator and star Lena Denham.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This award is for every woman who's ever felt that there wasn't a space for her.

TURNER: Speaking of women, Jody Foster honored with the Cecil B. DeMille career achievement award provided the night's most emotional moment.

JODIE FOSTER, ACTRESS: I will continue to tell stories, but it will be my writing on the wall and I want to be seen to be understood deeply and to be not so very lonely. TURNER: And former President Bill Clinton surprised everyone when he came out to salute "Lincoln." In the end, they laughed, they cried, and, of course, the party continues.

POEHLER: Good night. We're going home with Jodie foster.

TURNER: Michelle Turner --


TURNER: That was one of my favorite moments of the night. And speaking of Jodie Foster, it was quite a moment. Jodie Foster has managed to keep her personal life private over the years. But, you know, during a candid moment last night during her Cecil B. DeMille award acceptance speech, she caught everyone off guard with this.


FOSTER: I guess I just have a sudden urge to say something that I never really been able to air in public. So declaration that I'm a little nervous about. But, you know, I'm just going to put it out there, right, loud and proud, right? So I'm going to need your support on this.

I am single. I already did my coming out about 1,000 years ago.


TURNER: Yes, you expect the unexpected at the Golden Globes. Now, it has been widely speculated for years that Jodie Foster is gay. But she never publicly addressed her sexuality until last night. Now, she never did say the words "I'm gay" during her speech, but she did acknowledge that she's, quote, "out" and she thanked her ex-partner in love Sidney during the speech. It was definitely a moment, John.

BERMAN: Oh, to say the least. I have to say my inbox was overflowing with people commenting on the Jodie Foster moment last night.

Nischelle Turner in Hollywood, thanks very much. Nice to see you this morning.


SAMBOLIN: It is 20 minutes past the hour. Time for your "Early Reads", your local news that is making national headlines.

BERMAN: We're going to begin with a story from the conservative "Weekly Standard" magazine and blog. "The Standard" is reporting that former South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford will re-enter politics. Now our very own Peter Hamby was the first to break all this back in December, saying it was all but a done deal. But, now, "The Standard" is reporting that Mark Sanford will run for the House seat that was held by now Senator Tim Scott.

"The Weekly Standard" said Sanford will make this run official in the next few days. Of course, you will remember that then-Governor Sanford was reported missing and later admitted he had an affair with a woman in Argentina.

I bumped into Mark Sanford at the Republican convention. He told me he missed being in the arena. Sounded very much like a man way back in August who wanted to get back in the middle.

SAMBOLIN: I wonder how this is all going to play out. Will people forget? Will people forgive?

BERMAN: Well, they certainly won't forget. You don't forget something like that. You know, it was like in the Appalachian, that's a statement no one will ever forget.

SAMBOLIN: And he's engaged to that woman now.

BERMAN: He is. Yes.

SAMBOLIN: All right. Twenty-one minutes past the hour.

Will he or won't he? Only Lance Armstrong knows for sure. "USA Today" says when Armstrong sits down for an interview with Oprah Winfrey today, he'll finally admit using performance-enhancing drugs while he was winning seven Tour de France titles. According to the paper, the confession after years of vehement denials, you know, is part of Armstrong's plan to rehabilitate his public image.

Armstrong stepped down from Livestrong, that is the cancer charity that he founded, and was dropped by sponsors after the U.S. Doping Agency released a huge file of evidence against him.

He was also stripped of those Tour de France titles. So, the Oprah interview will air later this week. There are so many different publication who are actually online and saying these are the questions that I want to ask Lance Armstrong.

But, you know, I mean almost 100 percent sure he'll admit.

BERMAN: He will or there are some speculation he won't talk about specifics just in general. The question is, will he go far enough?

SAMBOLIN: And will it rehabilitate his image?

BERMAN: We'll see.

All right. Twenty-two minutes after the hour. And the flu adds misery in more ways than one. Coming up, an eye-opening break down the drain has on -- the drain of being sick has on your family's finances.


SAMBOLIN: We are minding your business this morning. Twenty-five minutes past the hour. U.S. stock futures are trading mixed. The Dow and S&P 500 future, they are up slightly. NASDAQ futures are down.

BERMAN: It is a big, big week for earnings.

And Poppy Harlow is in for Christine Romans today to cover that for us. Hey, Poppy.

POPPY HARLOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning. It's all about the big banks. So, looking at -- looking at last week how we did, the S&P 500 closed up about half a percent. And I think investors were sitting and waiting. They want to see how the big banks are going to do.

Starting on Wednesday, we'll hear from JPMorgan Chase, Goldman Sachs and Bank of America and Citigroup on Thursday. Then, Morgan Stanley. A lot of questions about Morgan Stanley. That's a big one on Friday.

But if you look at the 37 S&P 500 companies reporting this week, 22 of them are financials. And earnings growth is supposed to be very good, very strong, very different from 2008. If you look at what's expected, a rise of about 8.7 percent for the financials. If you exclude the insurance companies because they got hit so hard by Sandy, financials should rise about 30 percent from a year ago.

So earnings are looking very good for them. Wells Fargo had some record earnings on Friday. But one thing I think is important to point out, big question is why? Some people are saying the big mortgage settlements are getting behind these banks. They're starting to see more revenue and less of those loan loss reserves put aside.

But let's not forget, when I was looking at these numbers, these big banks are still announcing thousands and thousands of layoffs. So, they're cutting back. And that means more profitability.

BERMAN: And good news for the banks unless you work there.



HARLOW: But if you're an investor, this is a big week for the banks.

BERMAN: Poppy Harlow, thank you very much.

SAMBOLIN: Thank you.


SAMBOLIN: It's a muscle car for the modern age. Coming up, the brand new Corvette. It is ready to roll. We're going to share it with you.

Stay with us.