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Northeast Braces for Another Winter Storm; U.S. Speed Skaters Blame Suits for Poor Results; Report: Pattern of Harassment in Miami Dolphins Locker Room; Flooding in England; Children Euthanasia about to Become Legal in Belgium; Papa's Advice for Long and Happy Marriage on Valentine's Day; Connection between Severe and Unusual Weather in North America and Europe Established; Jimmy Fallon's Career on TV; Remotely Controlled Snowplowing Now Possible

Aired February 15, 2014 - 06:00   ET


CHRISTI PAUL, CNN ANCHOR: It is all tied up in Sochi. The U.S. is now No. 1 in the overall medal count but neck and neck with Norway. Events today could push Team USA to the top of the heap, though.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: If you're just getting over this headache, thousands of flights canceled, a lot of people still without power, but brace yourself, because another storm is on the way.


ELLEN PAGE, ACTRESS: And I'm tired of lying by omission.


PAUL: All righty. Actress Ellen Page making a very personal and emotional revelation there about what she says is a personal responsibility and a social obligation.

Your NEW DAY starts now.

Wow, good morning to you. The day after Valentine's Day. You know what that means for most people?

BLACKWELL: It's also Single Reminder's Day.

PAUL: No, it's also 50 percent off chocolate today.


PAUL: So there's hope. Whether you're single, whether you're in a relationship. It's better to be single than to be in the wrong relationship.

BLACKWELL: That is true.

PAUL: Just saying.

I'm Christi Paul.

BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell. And a lot of us are single and happy. Six o'clock here on the East Coast. NEW DAY SATURDAY.

PAUL: You know what? It's not so fun to be alone when winter is making us this miserable.

BLACKWELL: It is not.

PAUL: All the way around. I know millions of you in the northeast are hunkering down yet again.

BLACKWELL: Yes, we're talking Ohio Valley to New England. Another winter storm is expected to bring more snow to that region. Still trying to recover, actually.

PAUL: Power crews are struggling to just get the lights on for the latest number we have heard is 165,000 of you.

BLACKWELL: But that is a big improvement over yesterday, when 400,000 people were out of power.

Let's take a look at New York's Times Square here. Cold, cold today. Could actually get a few inches of snow.

PAUL: The travel nightmare isn't over either. There are a lot of people stranded in airports. If you're watching us from the airport right now, we're so sorry. Five hundred flights already canceled. And you know what? The roads aren't a lot better.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A car rear-ended me into another car, and then I spun, and then I got rear-ended again.


BLACKWELL: Yes, that college student says this 30-car pileup in Duluth, Minnesota, it was like bumper cars. Fortunately, though -- here's the good news -- no one suffered any serious injuries.

PAUL: Seventeen people were hurt, though, in this 100-car disaster in north Philadelphia. It shut down lanes on the Pennsylvania Turnpike.

BLACKWELL: The accident actually brought out the best in some people who brought food out to the people stuck in that epic traffic jam. You see someone bringing out a tray of sandwiches here.

PAUL: Bless her heart. That just makes it that much more tolerable.

BLACKWELL: Yes, especially when you're sitting out there with nothing.

You know, Jennifer Gray, she's got the answer to the question most people want answered. Is there more on the way?

JENNIFER GRAY, CNN METEOROLOGIST: I know. Unfortunately, yes. But at least this is not going to be anything compared to what we saw a couple of days ago. We are seeing rain pulling into the D.C. area. The snow has not quite made it into New York. It is just to the west of you, and it is going to be pushing that way through the next couple of hours.

As we timed this out, throughout the day today, the snow will be pushing into New York City, Boston. There's actually a blizzard warning for the Cape. Not for Boston, but for the Cape. So that's the only area we are seeing that. Otherwise, though, we're just seeing winter weather advisories all across the Northeast. We could pick up a couple inches of snow, though. And this is all going to be moving out by the wee hours of Sunday morning. \

So this one is going to be moving very quickly. It's going to dump, yes, some snow but nothing like we saw. We'll see maybe 2 to 4 inches across New York[ and into the east of Boston, maybe 6 to 10.

The other stories today, the temperatures in the south, you're finally going to be warming up. Look at these temperatures: Atlanta, 64 degrees by Monday. So we are going to be warming up in the south. Unfortunately, the Northeast, though, guys, still dealing with that snow.

When is spring, right?

PAUL: Good heavens. I'm amazed at all of the snow that's still piling up on the side of the road here, even with those temperatures. Jennifer, thank you so much.

GRAY: All right.

BLACKWELL: We've got an update from Sochi now.

Norway is tied with the United States for the most Olympic medals on the day. Day eight of the winter games. In fact, both the U.S. and Norway have four gold, three silver and 6 bronze medals. Germany has 11. But the nation leads in gold medals with seven right now.

PAUL: Now there's one team at the moment that seems pretty far away from the medal. We're talking about the U.S. speed skating team, because so far, not one American has finished better than seventh place. And the world leaders are on the U.S. team. The skaters reportedly feel the suits -- the suits, Victor -- that may be what's slowing them down, they may.

BLACKWELL: And the maker of those suits, Under Armour, defended its products. And it says the athletes tested the mock 39 suits before the Olympics started.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We actually had the first athletes skating in the suit in November. And just every step along the way, the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. It's like, "Oh, my God, the suit is so fast. Get it off me before any of our competition sees it."

(END VIDEO CLIP) BLACKWELL: CNN's Rachel Nichols, host of "UNGUARDED," is live in Sochi.

So Rachel, I mean, what is this team going to do? Are they going to switch suits? They have to do something.

RACHEL NICHOLS, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT/ANCHOR: Well, they're certainly trying to. Apparently, there is a slight holdup with the paperwork with the International Speed Skating Association. They're trying to get their request processed, crossing all the "T's," dotting all the "I's." But they expect that to happen.

And they took a team vote, because they've got to change as an entire team or not. And the vote came in that they would change back to the old suits.

Now let me explain the difference here. The new suits have a bunch of little technological changes, but one of the big ones is they have extra venting on the back. And the idea of this was supposed to release heat; actually make the skaters faster. Well, some of the skaters found that, hey, maybe there's a little bit of drag being created back there. And we're talking about a short where the difference is in hundredths of a second. Even a little bit can make a difference.

Because hey, you have the No. 1 skater in the world in a couple of these races suddenly placing seventh, eighth, 12th. They say there must be something going on. Maybe it is the suit.

Now, we did have one of the American coaches come out and meet with the media today. And he says, "Look, maybe it's not really about drag. Maybe it's just in these skaters' heads," but he said, "That really doesn't matter. Because once they think there's a problem," he said, "by definition, there is a problem." He said, "So maybe switching back to the old suits is just mental." He said, "Maybe it's about comfort level. Maybe it's about security." He said, "But that's the reason enough they want to switch back."

PAUL: All righty. So I want to switch sports here for a second here, because one of the things that a lot of people are going to be looking at today is this Cold War confrontation that's happening on the ice. U.S. men's hockey going up against Russia. What are they saying there?

NICHOLS: Yes, this is -- this is the game everybody has been waiting for, no question. And if you'd like to feel old, I can tell you that none of the members of Team USA were even born for the Miracle on Ice back in 1980. But there's no question it influenced them. It influenced both of these countries' programs.

And there's a lot of pressure on Russia to win this game for the home country and really win this tournament. They and the Canadians are considered the favorites, but I've got to tell you, the Americans have shown a lot of mettle here. They won their first game 7-1 over Slovakia. And Slovakia is not a team of slouches. Those are NHL players. They scored six goals in 14 minutes in that game. So we'll show strength to Russia, a little show that hey, they might not have the flashiest player, like Russia has Alex Ovechkin, but they've got great team chemistry. They're going to take it into this game this morning. And we'll have to see what happens.

PAUL: All righty. Rachel, thank you so much. We're looking forward to that. In fact, so much so.


PAUL: I'm so excited about this. In the next hour, we're talking to Michael Eruzione. He was the captain of that 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team, you know, the miracle.

BLACKWELL: Miracle on Ice.

PAUL: That beat Russia to win the gold. Don't go away for that. You know you want to hear from him.

BLACKWELL: That's coming up. Back here in the U.S., the jury in the loud music murder trial asks a question that some are calling a bombshell.

PAUL: Yes, it's something. Jurors are due back at the courthouse, by the way, in less than three hours, and this will start day four of deliberations. Michael Dunn could get life in prison. That's what's on the line here, if he's convicted of murdering 17-year-old Jordan Davis in 2012 at that Florida gas station.

BLACKWELL: Martin Savidge is in Jacksonville with the latest for us.

Martin, good morning.


Good morning, Christi.

And it is going to be a very interesting day here today with the proceedings. We should point out that jury deliberations are going to begin in just a couple of hours. They are set to begin at 9 a.m. However, the judge said at the end of the day yesterday that if the jury shows up earlier than that, they can begin deliberating earlier if they wish.

But it was the way it ended yesterday that had many people here shocked. Essentially the jury saying they had hit a wall, that was the last thing they told the judge before he dismissed them and let them go home. Well, back to their hotel for the evening.

But it was the question before that really shocked the courtroom, when they asked, "Is it possible that they might not render a decision on one count, but could render decisions on other counts."

And that, of course, brought to the forefront what many people had been thinking as the day dragged on, that it appeared that this jury was growing more and more deadlocked. The issue is over what particular count are they deadlocked. I think if you asked most people, they would say it's got to be the murder count. That is one that is directly tied to the death of 17-year-old Jordan Davis. It's possible it could be some of the other charges. But most people think it is that one in particular that the jury just cannot reach a unanimous decision on that.

If they do not, it means that that would be considered a hung jury on that particular charge, a mistrial. The other verdicts could go forward, and it's possible that Michael Dunn could still see some significant time.

But that's the way it ended. Maybe today the jury comes in much better rested, maybe in a different frame of mind. They go at it once again. We'll simply have to see.

Yesterday, we should point out another milestone has passed. This jury has now deliberated longer than the jury for the George Zimmerman case. You'll remember that one.

And then lastly, tomorrow would be Jordan Davis's 19th birthday -- Victor and Christi.

BLACKWELL: Martin Savidge, of course, in Jacksonville, Florida. Thank you.

PAUL: Yes. And we're going to be talking to a couple lawyers about this a little bit later, too. So stick around for that. And if you have specific questions just tweet us...


PAUL: ... because we want to make sure we get your questions answered.

So talk about this one: Months after Miami Dolphins player Richie Incognito became the center of that harassment scandal, a new report is shedding light on the culture inside the team's locker room.

BLACKWELL: So next, we'll talk about the explosive new details and explain why Incognito is not the only one to blame.


PAUL: All righty. Racial slurs, homophobic name calling, improper touching. I mean, those are just a few of the findings from this explosive new report commissioned by the NFL on the atmosphere inside the Miami Dolphins' locker room.

BLACKWELL: And you'll remember the team was thrust into the spotlight last October after accusations of harassment by Richie Incognito. Those surfaced after -- against, rather, teammate Jonathan Martin. And as CNN's Nick Valencia reports, the culture of harassment goes far beyond one player.


NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The 148-page document details continuing verbal abuse, racial slurs and vulgar sexual comments made about Martin's sister and mother by some of this Dolphins teammates. The situation first exploded last October when Miami Dolphins player Martin walked off of the team's facility, allegedly because of relentless bullying. He gave this interview in the fall.

JONATHAN MARTIN, FORMER MIAMI DOLPHINS PLAYER: I've spoken to my teammates on other -- or former teammates in other locker rooms across the NFL. And I asked them does this stuff go on? Is this normal rookie hazing? And, you know, the consensus was this was not normal.

VALENCIA: The investigative report says Martin was tormented by three of the team's defensive linemen starting in his rookie season in 2012. On Friday, Martin's agent reacted.

KENNY ZUCKERMAN, MARTIN'S AGENT: I'm just happy that we're able to move forward. I think Jonathan really wanted to get this behind him. And start to focus on playing football in 2014.

VALENCIA: The report says Richie Incognito, along with veteran John Jerry and old pro Mike Ponzi, engaged in a pattern of harassment. Though Martin was not the only target of the abuse, according to the report. The investigation uncovered another unnamed Dolphins offensive lineman who was allegedly subjected to homophobic name calling and inappropriate physical touching. The report also says that an assistant trainer was the subject of racial slurs.

In the fall, Richie Incognito defended himself.

RICHIE INCOGNITO, SUSPENDED MIAMI DOLPHINS PLAYER: I'm embarrassed by it. I'm embarrassed by my actions.

But what I want people to know is the way Jonathan and the rest of the offensive line and how our teammates, how we communicate, it's vulgar. It's not right. When the words are put in the context, I understand why a lot of eyebrows get raised, but people don't know how Jon and I communicate to one another.

VALENCIA: According to the report, Martin says he was driven into depression and believed his failure to stand up to his teammates was a personal shortcoming as he tried to fit in. He considered suicide twice in 2013 and sought treatment for emotional distress after leaving the team in midseason.

The report also says Martin struggled with emotional issues since high school.

Incognito's lawyer said investigator Ted Wells' report "is replete with errors," adding, quote, "It is disappointing that Mr. Wells would have gotten it so wrong but not surprising. The truth is that Jonathan Martin was never bullied by Richie Incognito or any member of the Dolphins defensive line."

Representatives for John Jerry and Mike Ponzi could not be reached for comment. But in a series of tweets just two days ago, before the Well report was released, Incognito lashed out at Martin, claiming, quote, "The truth is going to bury you." And on Friday, after this report was released, came this: "Please stop the hate. Happy Valentine's Day."


PAUL: All right, let's bring in CNN's Nick Valencia here. So the Miami, as I understand it, Dolphins coach and the front office, they were cleared of wrongdoing. But what about these two offensive -- if it offensive coaches?

VALENCIA: Yes, offensive lineman coaches. The culture of harassment went well beyond Richie Incognito, so much so that the offensive line coaches were also implicated in perpetuating what -- you know, a player was said to be gay. The running joke was that he was gay and that they were picking on him.

And you couple that, Christi and Victor, with the mental health issues that Jonathan Martin said that he has. That report also details that he's had mental health issues since high school. And you couple that with Richie Incognito, you know, what it comes down to, sort of him preying on Jonathan Martin, preying on the weak person in the locker room.

I spent a lot of years in a college football locker room. I worked for the USC football team during our championship years. And you know, what happened in that locker room is what you would expect to happen in a college football locker room. What we're reading in this report, it goes well beyond. It takes it to another level. And it really just -- it's very damaging, when you read this report, for Richie Incognito and everyone involved who picked on Jonathan Martin.

BLACKWELL: You know, there are some people who argue that it's a locker room; they're guys playing a game.


BLACKWELL: But this is a business. It's a huge business. And you have to act like professionals.

VALENCIA: And there are some NFL players I've spoken to that take that side. They say this should have stayed in the locker room. They think Jonathan Martin is somewhat responsible and at fault, too, because he went out and took this to the public eye. There's some people that don't agree with what Jonathan Martin did. There's others, though, the majority of people, have his back.

PAUL: All right.

BLACKWELL: Thank you, Nick. You got into it. We'll talk more.

VALENCIA: You bet.

PAUL: So retired NFL player Darren Sharper is fighting multiple rape charges in Southern California, and he's being investigated for sexual assaults in three other states. Alleged sexual assaults, I should say. BLACKWELL: Los Angeles County prosecutors, they charged the five-time pro bowler yesterday with drugging and attacking two women he allegedly met at a West Hollywood nightclub. Investigators also say they're looking into claims he raped five other women in Arizona, Las Vegas and in New Orleans, as well.

Still to come on NEW DAY, Paula Deen launches her culinary comeback, but are her fans ready to take a bite?


PAUL: Well, guess what? There will be no union at Volkswagen's Chattanooga, Tennessee, plant.

BLACKWELL: And here's why: because employees there rejected an invitation to join the UAW, the United Auto Workers. A secret balloting at the plant, where they make the Passat, went on for three days, and voting ended last night with about 90 percent voting no.

The UAW actually met lots of resistance from state Republicans, who feared businesses would take their jobs out of Tennessee.

PAUL: OK. So let's talk about Wall Street.


PAUL: It was love all around on Valentine's Day. The Dow shot up 126 points yesterday, helping to push that index higher for the, you know, whole week.

BLACKWELL: Hearts and eyes all up and down Wall Street. Now the Dow, S&P and NASDAQ were all up more than 2 percent this week. And it's marking its biggest weekly gains for the year.

Alison Kosik joins us now with this week's wrap from Wall Street.

Hey, Alison.


Another win for Wall Street. Stocks posted their second rally in a row. Tuesday, the Dow had its biggest gain of the year, up almost 200 points.

One big reason, Janet Yellen, the new Fed chief. She says she's planning to keep her predecessor, Ben Bernanke's, tapering plans in place.

Comcast has agreed to buy Time Warner. The $45 billion deal would combine two of the country's biggest cable operators, but that could raise some red flags because the new company would have a lot of control over the market. Regulators would need to prove a deal.

A deal in the retail sector. Joseph A. Bank is buying Eddie Bauer for more than $800 million. The deal will help Joseph A. Bank, a men's dress store, expand into new areas like footwear and men's clothing. Paula Deen is coming back. The celebrity cook created a new company called Paula Deen Ventures. It will include restaurants, cookbooks, cookware, and other products. Her sponsors, including the Food Network, dropped Deen last year after she made a racial slur.

And finally, go ahead, check your 401(k) balances. Fidelity says the average balance hit a record high last year, more than $89,000. That's up 15 percent from 2012. The jump is because of a big surge in the stock market. Christi and Victor, that's the wrap of the week on Wall Street.

PAUL: All righty, Alison, thank you so much.

BLACKWELL: Coming up, these are not -- take a look -- toys in a sand box. These are real cars in a sinkhole. And it's not just any car but classics that were in mint condition. We'll tell you where this happened and where.

PAUL: Plus, a lot of people are talking about this this morning. "Juno" star Ellen Page making a big announcement during a speech in Las Vegas. What she said that brought the entire crowd to its feet.


PAUL: Oh, you are up early on a Saturday morning. It's the bottom of the hour. Basically, 6:29 is what I'm talking about. I'm Christi Paul.

BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell. It is a pleasure to have you with us this morning.

Let's start with five things you need to know for your NEW DAY this half.

Up first, South Carolina was shaken by a 4.1 magnitude earthquake last night. Yes, South Carolina. This is the epicenter here, Edgefield, South Carolina. You know, he tremor was felt as far away as metro Atlanta, though. So far no injuries or significant damage has been reported.

PAUL: No. 2, they look like toy cars, right? This video was taken by a drone helicopter, though, and what you're seeing are Corvettes stuck in a sinkhole. Eight rare cars fell when the ground opened up Wednesday. This was at the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green, Kentucky. That sinkhole is about 40 feet deep and 25 feet wide.

BLACKWELL: President Obama wants law makers to sign off on $1 billion in aid to Jordan. The president pledged the long guarantee to Jordan's King Abdullah II yesterday during a bilateral meeting. Jordan is key ally for the U.S. that's facing significant financial pressure from hosting hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees. Also, Mr. Obama says he plans to ask Congress to renew the aid package through the next five years.

PAUL: Speaking of Syria number four, a last-ditch effort today in Geneva to break through deadlocked peace talks. U.N. special envoy Lakhdar Brahimi plans to hold the final meeting with Syria's warring sides wrapping up a second round of U.N.-brokered talks here. But breaking an impasse is going to be an uphill battle. Representatives of the Syrian opposition say they want a new government in Damascus. However, government representatives are calling that unrealistic. Insisting that the first thing that has to be addressed in Syria is terrorism.

BLACKWELL: And number five, actress Ellen Page makes a major announcement she's gay. The star of the hit movie "Juno" broke the news yesterday during a speech in Las Vegas for the human rights campaign. Page says she decided to share her story because she's "tired of lying by omission."

During the speech, Page praised NFL hopeful Michael Sam, who also revealed he's gay earlier this week.

PAUL: She said the star - the Canadian star said, I should say, said she's learning a lot from others who have experienced or announced their, you know, orientation publicly. Which is obviously a very difficult thing to do. And she was real emotional in this as well. I should point out.

BLACKWELL: Yeah. And one of the more touching moments was when she talked about her struggle and why she decided to share her story, listen to this.


ELLEN PAGE, ACTRESS: And I am here today because I am gay. And because ....


PAGE: And because maybe I can make a difference. To help others have an easier and more hopeful time. Regardless for me, I feel a personal obligation and a social responsibility. I also do it selfishly because I'm tired of hiding. And I'm tired of lying by omission.


PAGE: I suffered for years because I was scared to be out. My spirit suffered. My mental health suffered. And my relationship suffered. And I'm standing here today with all of you on the other side of that pain.


PAUL: That crowd was so touched, by the way, they gave her a standing ovation. But I think what is so touching about it, too, is she gives such a good description what you live with when you don't open up about it.

BLACKWELL: It is the weight, and I came out seven years ago, it is the weight of not being able to be the same person in every room.

PAUL: Yes. BLACKWELL: And now it's the liberation of, if I see you at work, you know my truth. If I see you at a restaurant or with my family. And, you know, you can feel and hear all of that liberation in her voice.

PAUL: It's a fight to be authentic.


PAUL: And she really gave such great understanding of what kind of a fight it is when you're holding something like that in. So it will be interesting to see how the world reacts to this.

BLACKWELL: And what she's doing will help someone to make someone's life better.

PAUL: Yeah. Absolutely.

BLACKWELL: Hey, still to come on "NEW DAY." Lessons in love. More lessons in love here. And this one straight from the Vatican.

PAUL: Pope Francis giving his advice for a happy lasting marriage.


BLACKWELL: Good morning to you. And good afternoon to Istanbul. A live look at Turkey here. This is a museum in Istanbul. And it's been around for a while. Dedicated in 360 A.D. All right. So for a look at some other news making headlines around the world. Let's head over to Christi.

PAUL: Yeah, Victor, thank you. We want to start in England with you this morning where the wettest January in more than 200 years has sent the River Thames over its banks. And it's flooded several towns at this point. Weekend shows no signs of driving out. Let's get to Jim Boulden. He has the story for us from (inaudible). Good morning, Jim.

JIM BOULDEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, this river is the last thing the Thames River Valley needs this weekend, however, this is a good sign for the residents here. The army has shown up in order to lay down sandbags. We're very close to the River Thames. The government has said it's very likely to see the river rising throughout this weekend, as we have the third major Atlantic storm hit this country this week. Back to you, Christi.

PAUL: All right, hey, Jim, thank you so much. Let's go to Belgium now. And this is a jolting headline, folks, but that country has just decided that children have the right to die by euthanasia. Diana Magnay is covering that story for us from Berlin. Good morning, Diana.

DIANA MAGNAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Christi, Belgium has become the first country in the world to give children no matter their age the right to choose whether they live or die. Now, any child in intolerable physical suffering and at the end of their life can request the euthanasia as long as adult. Who thinks that request is voluntary and considered. Critics say children don't understand what death is. And (INAUDIBLE) means they shouldn't have to make that choice. But the latest poll show that most people in Belgium agree with the legislation. Now it's just up to the king to sign it and it will pass into law. Christi.

PAUL: Thank you so much. Let's talk about the pope. He may be celibate, but he knows a thing or two about commitment. And on Valentine's Day, he gave out some relationship advice to the faithful. Erin McLaughlin has the story from London. Good morning, Erin.

ERIN MCLAUGHLIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Christi. Well, it's all about love at the Vatican on Valentine's Day. Some 10,000 couples and around 28 countries registered to attend a special audience with Pope Francis. He answered three questions from some of the couples in that audience. One of them asked him the secret to a successful marriage. And he said the answer lies in three words, permission, thanks and forgiveness. He also said to couples who might find themselves in an argument, even if you throw a plate or a dish, never end a day without being at peace with each other. There you go, some love advice from Pope Francis. Christi.

PAUL: Erin, thank you. We appreciate it. And let's head to North Korea now. Because they're showing their athletic side there. They're marking the debut of its first ski resort. Paula Hancocks has the story from Seoul, South Korea.

PAULA HANCOCKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Christi, North Korea may not have any athletes competing at the Sochi Winter Olympics, but they can now start training some at home. We have fresh footage of the luxury ski resort which the vast majority of North Koreans could never hope to visit. A sign of opulence in a country that struggles to feed its own people, at least one U.S.-based tour group already has package tours to the North Korean slopes. Christi.

PAUL: Thank you so much. Paula Hancocks, we appreciate it. Victor, boy, what's going on with the weather?

BLACKWELL: Yeah, so many of us are suffering with the snow and the ice. And it comes on and on. But OK, so you look at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. And look at this, I mean, we were taunted by this. Athletes on the slopes competing in cutoffs. And at home, you know, we're dealing with the shutdown in Atlanta and Charlotte. I mean, what's going on here? Well, Brian Todd spoke with some meteorologists trying to figure this out. Brian?

BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Christi and Victor, the snow here wasn't really this high, but it sure felt like it. This series of storms pounded us here in the mid-Atlantic, slammed the south, the northeast. But other regions got their own severe weather but we're now told it's all connected.


TODD: The refrain is so similar from Atlanta, which got one city- stopping winter storm followed by another.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's been like nothing I've seen, I've lived here almost 30 years.

TODD: to the Great Lakes where 80 plus percent of the lakes were iced over for the first time in about 20 years. The buildup forming ice caves.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: These were something special. I've never seen anything like it. They were as big as a garage.

TODD: People in so many different regions say they've never seen weather like this winter's. Over the past week we've reached a point where 49 out of 50 states have had snow on the ground. We've seen so- called thunder sleet. Captured in this iReport video from a backyard deck in Grand Meadows, New Jersey. But also, a punishing drought in California, people in more than a dozen towns in danger of running out of water. Again that refrain.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is the worst year I've ever seen.

TODD: These weather patterns are severe, crazy and connected. This winter, a high-pressure ridge of stable air blocked precipitation from coming in from the Pacific Ocean causing California's drought. Then it pushed the jet stream further up into Canada than usual, which then led to a deeper trough in the east pushing further south. That's why those areas got hit by cold weather from Canada.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They are associated with that one-way pattern so they are connected in that sense.

TODD: Experts say that float of the jet stream that's driving those severe weather patterns into the south and dumping piles of snow here in the mid-Atlantic is also slower moving this year than in years past. Holding those severe weather patterns longer over this area and in places like Great Britain, which caused severe flooding there. The wettest January in 2 1/2 centuries


TODD: And, yes, that same wave pattern is what's affected the Winter Olympics, making it almost summertime in Sochi. Why is it all so slow-moving this year holding those severe weather patterns over us longer?

BILL LAPENTA, NATIONAL CENTERS FOR ENVIRONMENTAL PREDICTION: That's an area of research that we're currently investigating. We don't have a clear cut answer to that question. And if we did, we would have a much more skillful prediction in the longer time scale, say, out to one to two months.


TODD: Another mystery, whether all of this is connected to climate change or not, Bill Lapenta at the Centers for Environmental Prediction says they're still trying to crack that code, trying to find out if climate change impacts those jet stream patterns in our crazy weather. Christi and Victor.

PAUL: All right. Thanks, Brian, so much.

BLACKWELL: You know, so we're coming up on a new era in late night.

PAUL: I know.

BLACKWELL: Jimmy Fallon is getting ready to take over the top late night show in America. And he's being paid a pretty penny to do it. Coming up, a look at the business of being Jimmy Fallon.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I need your help today.






BLACKWELL: That's Jimmy Fallon. Doing one of his favorite sketches. You know, that the soap opera, where they use fake arms instead of their real arms.

PAUL: Obviously.

BLACKWELL: And Fallon begins his run as the newly crowned host of the "Tonight Show" Monday night. He's already got A-list guest lined up with Will Smith and U2.

PAUL: That's just the first night.


PAUL: That's first night, people.

BLACKWELL: Good start.

PAUL: CNN chief business correspondent Christine Romans takes a look at how the business of Jimmy Fallon could translate into big dollars. Not just for him, but for NBC, too.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Christi and Victor, Johnny Carson, Jay Leno and now Jimmy Fallon. Fallon's set to take over one the most coveted time spots in all of television and make a lot more money.


ROMANS: From "Saturday Night," Jimmy Fallon, to "Late Night," to "Tonight." a native New Yorker, Jimmy Fallon is bringing "The Tonight Show" back home. More than 40 years after Johnny Carson took it out West. Adding one's name to the list of TV legend has a nice pay day: Fallon more than doubling his salary making a reported $12 million a year.

JIMMY FALLON: Hey, must be the money!

ROMANS: Fallon always dreamed of being on "Saturday Night Live."

FALLON: Yeah, who doesn't?

ROMANS: in 1998, at just 24, that dream came true.

FALLON: Oh my god.

ROMANS: He anchored weekend update alongside Tina Fey and was known for cracking up during his sketches.


ROMANS: Funny man left "SNL" in 2004 to pursue a career in movies. But his big screen dreams flopped.

FALLON: Hi, buddy, how's it going? UNIDENTIFIED BOY: I hate taxi.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So Fallon returned to NBC to take over "Late Night."

FALLON: This is freaking awesome!

ROMANS: Bringing his witty pop culture references ...

FALLON: To the rockiness monster ...

ROMANS: Spot-on impressions.


ROMANS: And famous friends.

FALLON: I'm the real cookie monster. Num, num, num.

ROMANS: The host made a reported $5 million a year. During the day, Fallon writes books, plays pitch-man.


ROMANS: Even won a Grammy for best comedy album.

FALLON: Come on everyone, Tebow, come on everyone Tebow.


ROMANS: Fallon wrote this song ...

FALLON (singing) ROMANS: And donated its proceeds to Fisher House to help military family. He's hoping for more laughs on the "Tonight's" Show.

FALLON: Are you ready for this?

ROMANS: But the business of being Jimmy Fallon is ...


ROMANS: No laughing matter.


ROMANS: The "Tonight Show" has seen its ratings fall over the years, but it still makes a lot of money for NBC, between $25 and $40 million a year. And the network is hoping Fallon will help attract a younger audience. Victor, Christi.

PAUL: All right, Christine, and thank you so much.

BLACKWELL: I wonder if that puts any pressure on Dave Letterman. I mean you've got Kimmel, who's a younger guy, you've got Jimmy Fallon, what's this mean for Letterman?

PAUL: I don't know.

BLACKWELL: We shall see.

PAUL: We'll see what he's going to pull out of his hat.

BLACKWELL: All right, so question for you -- how's your back from shoveling all the snow and ice over the past two weeks?

PAUL: Oh, we're so sorry. But listen, just sit back and relax. We give you permission. Because we're about to show you the future of snow shoveling. And no, it has nothing to do with handing that shovel to your kid and saying have at it.



JIMMY KIMMEL, "JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE" Meanwhile, the petition asking the federal government to deport Justin Bieber is getting a lot of support. If the petition gets 100,000 signatures the Obama administration is required to respond to it. I know this because there was one against me once.


KIMMEL: But the petition to deport Justin Bieber now has 210,000 signatures so the White House will have to respond. Obama should have Sasha and Malia write the response to that.

(LAUGHTER) KIMMEL: By the way, this is currently the most popular of all the petitions on the White House website. So, who says we don't care about the important stuff?


PAUL: Is it really ...

BLACKWELL: It's - I can't believe it.


BLACKWELL: I mean if Jimmy says it, then it has to be true.

PAUL: Be true!


PAUL: You know, after the whirlwind of this week, some people might believe it anyway, because I know your head is spinning. I know you spent a good chunk of the week, you know, digging yourselves out from all of the snow.

BLACKWELL: Yeah, whether you used a shovel or a plow. Everybody was out there doing something with snow in 49 of the 50 states. But how about shoveling the snow from inside your house.

PAUL: Come on.

BLACKWELL: It is possible now. Hey, you could do it. Jeanne Moos shows us how.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You can shovel or use a snow blower, but wouldn't you rather make heads spin with your very own remote- controlled snowplow?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We don't really have a fancy name.

MOOS: Let's just call it the plow that wow!


MOOS: It made its debut this week not on the home shopping channel but on the weather channel. Sort of like a rumba that plows instead of vacuums, it hasn't yet shown up on YouTube with a cat dressed as a shark on board chasing a duck. Or a cat swiping at a dog. But we digress. The remote-controlled snowplow lets you plow from inside your toasty warm house. It's six-wheel drive. Runs for two hours on two car batteries. An air compressor lowers and raises the blade with a pneumatic hiss. Charlie Payne's company Superdroid Robots made it as a novelty product. Usually, they - search and rescue robot or SWAT team robot for police and fire departments. To prove the plow's strength, they show its performing feats like pushing around parrots or even pulling a pickup truck. But meteorologists on the weather channel seem smitten.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That is beyond, and I want one.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I know what I'm asking for Christmas next year.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You've got to hand me one.

MOOS: Yeah, well, you got to have you some income to afford it. Price tag for this first one is $8,500. But like Charlie's wife says what's $8,500 compared to a hospital bill for a wrenched back or a heart attack? In a bigger storm you have to use it a few times, every three or four inches. Actually, the remote-controlled snowplow isn't even their weirdest creation. This is.

Superdroid created the remote controlled golf cart as a prank.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We were racing the golf cart around, we lost control over the couple of times and it went right through the chain linked fence.


MOOS: So they're not actually selling it. As for the snowplow -- imagine what the dog would make of it. And what it would make of the door mat. Probably walk all over it. Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.


PAUL: OK. So I'm laughing at myself because initially when they said two car batteries, I'm like, that's not cheap!

BLACKWELL: Neither is the $8,000.

PAUL: That - $8,000. If you get $8,000, I guess you got the money for the batteries.

BLACKWELL: Kids don't go around with shovels anymore, I mean 15, 20 bucks to shovel the driveway. Shovel the walk. I mean, you know, $8,000 paying a kid, you know, for four or five winters.

PAUL: There you go.

Hey, we're so glad that you started your morning with us.

BLACKWELL: Next hour of your "NEW DAY" starts right now.

So, listen if you're in Boston or New York and you're still digging out from this week's snow, we've got some news for you. It's about to get a whole lot worse.

PAUL: We're sorry to tell you. Also, the jury is resuming in just about two hours their deliberation this morning in the trial of Michael Dunn. And according to a late note on Friday they may have already reached a verdict.

BLACKWELL: Today, the U.S. men's hockey team plays in Russian, in Sochi there, of course. But this may remind you of another Olympic Game. It's described as a miracle. The 1980 team captain Mike Eruzione will be here live to take us back to that miracle on ice. Your NEW DAY continues now.