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New Year Celebrations; Fiscal Cliff Uncertainty

Aired January 2, 2013 - 04:00:00   ET



CROWD: Nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two ...



CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: Well, of course, we wish you a very happy new year and a very warm welcome as we kick off 2013 on CNN STUDENT NEWS. My name is Carl Azuz. We are glad you`re joining us. We hope your year is off to a good start.

One question we had going in to the break was, will Congress and President Obama find a way to avoid the fiscal cliff? When we put this show together last night, we still had that question. What came to be knows is the fiscal cliff was really a series of automatic tax increases and government spending cuts that were scheduled to take effect at the start of the year.

The reason - U.S. Government has too much debt. Now, the president and Congress could have avoided that fiscal cliff by coming up with the compromise, a different plan to reduce the debt. But as of yesterday, still no agreement. There are two main ways to reduce debt: cut down on spending and or raise taxes. One big sticking point was whom to raise taxes on and by how much? The president wanted families making more than $250,000 a year to pay more in taxes. He said they could afford it. Critics said the economy is too weak to raise taxes on anyone.

The Senate came up with a bipartisan compromise to raise taxes, but only on families making more than $450,00 a year. The plan would be a temporary fix, it would last for two months, and it would delay any cuts in government spending. The thing is, the compromise also has to pass the U.S. House of Representatives, and it wasn`t clear yesterday if it would do that. has your latest updates.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: See if you can I.D. me. I was born in Chicago in 1947. In 1992, my husband was elected president and in the year 2000, I was elected to the U.S. Senate. I`m the only former first lady to have served there and in the presidential cabinet.

I`m Hillary Clinton, the current U.S. Secretary of State.


AZUZ: Secretary Clinton spent New Year`s day in the hospital after getting a blood clot in her head. Doctors say she`s on blood thinners to dissolve the clot and they expect she`ll be OK. This is the latest of a few health issues she had. Clinton caught a stomach virus in December, which made her dehydrated. She fainted because of that, which gave her a concussion. This blood clot was a result of that concussion. Clinton had to stay home for most of December. She didn`t testify as scheduled about September`s deadly terrorist attack on the U.S. Building in Benghazi, Libya. Dr. Sanjay Gupta explores what`s next in her recovery.

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is a blood vessel that actually drains blood away from the brain. It`s called the cerebral vein, and I want to show you here, we know that in Secretary Clinton`s case it is actually on the right side of her head, somewhere in this area, it`s called the right transverse sinus.

Let me show you on this model here, I`ll show you the left side just for sake of demonstration here. I removed the hemisphere of the brain here. You can actually see where the - where the veins are. You see that blue area right in there. That is the area that is actually draining blood away from the brain. And one of these veins in this area, that`s where that clot actually has occurred. Most likely, due to a combination of the head trauma that she had a few weeks ago in addition to the fact that she has had a problem with blood clots in the past, dating back to 1998. We heard from her doctors. They say that she`s on blood winners, they say she`s awake, she`s talking. And most importantly, there is no evidence of stroke or neurological damage.

My guess is that they are going to monitor her at least for another couple of days in the hospital and probably get another scan at some point to make sure that clot is in fact dissolved as the result of those blood- thinning medications. As we get more details, we certainly bring them to you. Back to you for now.

AZUZ: Thank you, Dr. Gupta.

For a while now, Secretary Clinton has been planning to step down from her position, once a new nominee is confirmed by the Senate. The president`s choice for the job is this man, Senator John Kerry. You might have heard that name before. He ran for president and lost to incumbent president, George W. Bush in 2004. On December 21st, President Obama nominated Kerry for U.S. Secretary of State. He`s done extensive traveling and met with international officials on behalf of the Obama administration, but as many of you have already learned, Kerry`s nomination doesn`t necessarily mean he`ll get the job. The Senate will have the final say as part of the advice and consent it gives the president.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Time for the year`s first "Shoutout." Which of the following is associated with Abraham Lincoln: if you think you know the answer, then shout it out!

Is it the Treaty of Paris, Emancipation Proclamation, Articles of Confederation or Treaty of Versailles? You`ve got three seconds, go!

President Abraham Lincoln`s Emancipation Proclamation took effect on January 1, 1863. That`s your answer and that`s your shoutout.

And that made January 1, 2013 the 150th anniversary of when the Emancipation Proclamation took effect. In honor of that. U.S. Postal Service unveiled this new stamp yesterday.

President Lincoln`s proclamation was made during the U.S. Civil War. It said that anyone who was a slave in a rebellious state was set free. It didn`t apply to all U.S. States, and it didn`t officially end slavery in the U.S. The 13th Amendment did that. But the Emancipation Proclamation helped pave the way to the end of slavery.

Of course, there are a number of new laws in effect as of yesterday. Last fall, we told you a couple of states were legalizing recreational marijuana. In some others, voters approved same sex marriage. Here are a few laws you might not have known about. In Illinois and California, employers can no longer require workers to share their social media passwords. Some privacy concerns about that. Also, if you live in Illinois, forget about shark fins soup, it`s now illegal to have shark fins at all. And you could get fined to thousand bucks if you pop a wheely on a motorcycle. If you own a swamp buggy in Florida, you no longer have to register it as a motor vehicle, that will save some folks a step. Concord, Massachusetts has officially banned plastic bottles. They could be confiscated and as far as animals go, cat lovers in Wellington, Kansas, might call a new law, catty (ph). It says you can`t have more than four felines living in your house. And if you`ve got a wild hog in Kentucky, you`d better not release it into the wild. Officials don`t want their state to become a hog haven.

Well, if you live in or near major city, you might have heard some fire works the other night, as people welcome 2013 with a bang. Times Square topped off today`s show, but before we sign off we are going to give you a glimpse of the pyrotechnics prowess proudly portrayed by cities around the world. Sit back and enjoy our international tour of how 12 a.m on January 1 looked, as the world`s spun around to a new year.



CROWD: One! Happy new year!

CROWD: Two! One!



CROWD: Four! Three! Two!