Return to Transcripts main page

CNN Newsroom

FBI Search Turns Up More Biden Documents; George Santos Denies Being Drag Queen In Brazil; Ukraine Questions Loyalty Of Some Orthodox Churches; Atlanta Protest Turns Destructive; Entry To Machu Picchu Suspended; Beijing Pushes COVID-19 Propaganda During Lunar New Year; U.S. Nursing Shortage; Jeremy Renner Health Update. Aired 5-6a ET

Aired January 22, 2023 - 05:00   ET




KIM BRUNHUBER, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Hello and welcome to all of you watching us here in the United States, Canada and all around the world. I'm Kim Brunhuber.

Ahead on CNN NEWSROOM, an FBI search of President Biden's Delaware home results in more classified documents. We'll look at the political fallout.

Plus, thousands of demonstrators flooding the streets of Tel Aviv, protesting Netanyahu's government. We're live in Jerusalem. And --


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We are not out here for wages. We are out here because we want patient safety.

BRUNHUBER (voice-over): The COVID pandemic left unsafe working conditions for thousands of nurses striking across New York. We'll explore the larger nationwide epidemic of nursing shortages.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice-over): Live from CNN Center, this is CNN NEWSROOM with Kim Brunhuber.

BRUNHUBER: Political problems are rapidly mounting at the Biden White House. The president's personal attorney says an FBI search of Mr. Biden's private home in Delaware has turned up even more classified materials. His Republican critics in Congress are already sharpening their knives.

The president and first lady were not home at the time. The materials taken by the FBI add to a growing list of classified documents recently recovered from places connected to the president. A special counsel is investigating. For more on Friday's extraordinary search, here is CNN's Arlette Saenz. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ARLETTE SAENZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: More materials bearing classified markings were found at the personal home of President Biden in Wilmington, Delaware, on Friday, marking the latest developments in the ongoing classified document saga.

The president's personal attorney, Bob Bauer, released a statement detailing how the Justice Department carried out a nearly 13-hour search at that Wilmington home. Sources later said that it was FBI officials who conducted that search, really representing a remarkable moment to have the FBI searching the home of a current sitting president.

Now Bauer detailed how the president signed off on providing access to that home to the Justice Department. And he also described what exactly the search entailed as these officials had access to the living, working and storage areas at the Wilmington, Delaware, home.

Bauer went on to say in his statement, "DOJ had full access to the president's home, including personally handwritten notes, files, papers, binders, memorabilia, to-do lists, schedules and reminders going back decades.

"DOJ took possession of materials it deemed within the scope of its inquiry, including six items with classification markings and surrounding materials, some of which were from the president's service in the Senate, some of which were from his tenure as vice president.

"DOJ also took for further review personally handwritten notes from the vice presidential years."

This marks the fifth known discovery of classified documents at locations tied to President Biden. The very first coming on November 2nd, when his personal attorneys searched a former private office at the Penn Biden Center.

There were later discoveries made at that Wilmington, Delaware, home. But this search on Friday marks the first time the Justice Department was involved in searching premises tied to President Biden.

Now this all comes as the White House has faced some scrutiny for the way that they have handled this situation. The president had been asked on Thursday whether he had any regrets about the way that they've been handling this, including the disclosure of when these discoveries took place.

The president said he had no regrets and that, ultimately, he believes that there is no "there" there with the documents and that that is what the investigations will turn up.

Now one thing that the president and his attorneys have consistently tried to stress is that they are trying to cooperate in every manner possible, with both the National Archives, the Justice Department and now the special counsel investigation. Trying to draw that contrast with the way that former president Donald

Trump has handled classified documents at his Mar-a-Lago home, as he is now under investigation for obstruction by his own special counsel.


SAENZ: But certainly this drip, drip, drip nature of this story, the very slow trickling-out of information has created some complications for President Biden and his White House -- Arlette Saenz, CNN, traveling with the president in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.


BRUNHUBER: Many people have understandably equated the president's situation with that of former president Donald Trump, since they both deal with mishandled classified materials. Earlier, former deputy FBI director Andrew McCabe was asked about that. Here he is.


ANDREW MCCABE, CNN SENIOR LAW ENFORCEMENT ANALYST: The FBI, with DOJ attorneys participating, get to go in and do the kind of search that the FBI and the department rely upon, to be sure that there's no more material at any given location. So obviously, they were able to do that here.

But the way we got here, very, very, very different. In this case, for whatever public relations or political missteps they have had, you have to give the president's team credit for at least being incredibly proactive and, I would say, proactively cooperative from the very beginning.

And even last week, when we heard that there were documents found in the Wilmington residence, at that point, I was suggesting on several appearances -- and I think others agreed -- like, that was the time to bring DOJ in.

Give them the opportunity with the bureau to say, hey, search wherever you want, look at everything you want to look at and you tell us what you think maybe needs to go. Put it on them. Get the president and his team out of the position of having to sign some sort of attestation that there are no more documents or everything's been done.

Let the government do that search. And clearly, that's what they were inclined to do and that's what they accomplished yesterday.


BRUNHUBER: All right. Setting aside the potential legal issues, the bigger problem for President Biden may be the self-inflicted political damage this has caused. Last hour, I asked professor Natasha Lindstaedt for her take on it. Here she is.


NATASHA LINDSTAEDT, UNIVERSITY OF ESSEX: With the voting of House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, where they just looked completely in disarray and look like they didn't have any clue about how to govern.

Now we're not focused on that topic anymore and we're focused on Biden's documents. It's something on the news all the time. And Americans do think it's important.

But you have Democrats trying to take the high road. You have House Representative Adam Schiff or Democrat Senator Raphael Warnock both saying that it's fair that the special counsel was appointed and that Democrats care about the rule of law and that everybody is treated equally.

The Democrats are trying to turn this into an example of where they are going to comply with the law, because they know that that's important for democracy.

The Republicans, of course, are having a field day with this and saying that Trump is being treated far more unfairly than Biden and this is another example of how far the deep state goes in the way the FBI raid was handled. And they're trying to use this to their advantage, the best that they can.

BRUNHUBER: Looking a bit longer term, then, do you think this will have any effect on Biden's decision to run again?

Do you think this might damage him, the polls that you were quoting, notwithstanding, especially among swing voters?

LINDSTAEDT: I don't think it's going to affect Biden's decision to run, because Biden will be running most likely against Trump, who also faces a very similar situation.

I think Biden's team thinks that he can weather this storm if he just complies with what the special counsel wants him to do, complies with the investigation and then focuses on the other issues. And I think Americans will start to focus on other issues.


BRUNHUBER: That was professor Natasha Lindstaedt speaking to us earlier.

Still ahead, we'll take a closer look at how this documents saga unfolded.

On top of all of that, sources tell CNN that White House chief of staff Ron Klain plans to step down in the near future, most likely after next month's State of the Union address. Klain has been a close adviser to Mr. Biden for decades.

Now the president must find a replacement. Among the various names being circulated for the job are two cabinet officials, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Labor Secretary Marty Walsh.

George Santos, the embattled U.S. congressman who admitted to embellishing his resume, is again denying claims that he once performed as a drag queen in Brazil. Last week, a Brazilian drag performer shared these photos of a person dressed in drag, claiming that it was Santos back in 2008.

On Saturday the Republican lawmaker was asked about the allegations and here's how he responded.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Congressman, were you ever a drag queen in Brazil?

REP. GEORGE SANTOS (R-NY): No, I was not a drag queen in Brazil, guys. I was young and I had fun at a festival.


SANTOS: Sue me for having a life.


BRUNHUBER: During that exchange, Santos also refused to answer questions on his debunked assertion that his mother was at the World Trade Center on 9/11.

Political pressure is piling on Germany to supply advanced military equipment to Ukraine. The three Baltic republics -- Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania -- are urging Berlin to budge on its opposition to supplying Leopard tanks to Kyiv.

Estonia's foreign minister tweeted that's needed to stop Russia's aggression and restore peace in Europe quickly.

Meanwhile, Germany's defense minister has ordered an audit of the entire fleet of Leopard tanks, saying he wants to make sure they can be activated on short notice.

On the front lines, Ukraine is fighting back in the face of grueling Russian attacks on Bakhmut. This video shows Ukrainian drones and artillery hitting Russian positions near the city.

Ukraine says it has repelled dozens of Russian attacks across the eastern front.

And to the south, Ukraine is disputing Russia's claim on Saturday that it captured several villages in the Zaporizhzhya region. The Ukrainian officials say that Russian artillery has destroyed dozens of homes and infrastructure in the area.

Well, Ukraine isn't just fighting Russia on the battlefield but at the altar. Since the Russian invasion last February, there's been turmoil in the Orthodox Church.

Pre-war, Ukraine's Orthodox Church was split into two, one independent branch and the other traditionally loyal to Moscow and its controversial Patriarch Kirill, who has been an enthusiastic supporter of Russia's invasion.

Shortly after the war began, the Moscow-supporting part of the church publicly cut ties with its northern neighbor. The Ukrainian authorities believe that some of its priests and some of its worshippers remain loyal to Russia. Scott McLean reports.


SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Just outside Kyiv is the Church of the Nativity. It's been here since the Soviet days. But now it has a new priest, Father Pavlo Mityaev and has a new denomination.

MCLEAN: Oh, wow. Beautiful.

MCLEAN (voice-over): The Orthodox Church of Ukraine.

PAVLO MITYAEV, PRIEST, ORTHODOX CHURCH OF UKRAINE (through translator): Previously, nobody paid attention to whether it was a Ukrainian or Russian-speaking church. They were simply coming to God. But when the war started, everything changed.

MCLEAN: In September, parishioners here voted to cut ties with the Orthodox branch that had been loyal to Moscow.

SVITLANA SHUMILINA, ORTHODOX CHURCH OF UKRAINE MEMBER (through translator): It was very difficult but we understood why we were doing it. First and foremost, it was about security.

MCLEAN: Three to 400 churches have switched their allegiance to the church of Ukraine since war began, including one of the most famous cathedrals in the country. Evidence perhaps of a growing mistrust of the formerly Moscow link branch despite its public break with Russia.

KATERYNA GAN, ORTHODOX CHURCH OF UKRAINE MEMBER: It's not like just a church. It's like agenda. It's like a Russian agenda here in Ukraine.

MCLEAN: Ukraine suspects that agenda lives on in some churches. This video surfaced in November showing a patriotic Russian song being sung on the grounds of Kyiv's famous Lavra monastery.

Days later, the site was raided by Ukraine security service, officially to prevent it from being used for hiding sabotage and reconnaissance groups or even storing weapons. But the raids at churches across the country turned up little more than Russian passports, symbols and books.

Metropolitan Klyment is a bishop in the church once loyal to Moscow.

METROPOLITAN KLYMENT, BISHOP, UKRAINIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH (through translator): There was no mention in the findings of weapons or saboteurs. Instead, they said they found printed matter, documents which are not prohibited under Ukrainian law.

MCLEAN: Klyment admits there have been traitors. One priest was convicted of leaking Ukrainian battlefield locations to the Russians. But he says the reputation of the entire church has been unfairly tarnished.

MCLEAN: Do you feel like the government is questioning your patriotism?

KLYMENT: It is absolutely unacceptable. Members of the church like anyone else are citizens of Ukraine and sometimes they are among the country's finest citizens. Proving their patriotism by laying down their lives.

MCLEAN (voice-over): In a statement, the Ukrainian Security Service said the raids are aimed exclusively at national security issues.

This is not a matter of religion. The Ukrainian government is now considering a ban on churches with centers of influence in Russia. Klyment thinks that will only push his church underground.

KLYMENT: There's a danger now that millions of Ukrainians will be forced to perform their religious rites and receive spiritual guidance illegally.

MCLEAN: Do you view this as religious persecution?

KLYMENT: What else would you call persecution if not this?

MCLEAN (voice-over): On Christmas Day, Klyment's church carried on with mass just steps away from its former cathedral.



KYRYLO SERHEYEV, UKRANIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH SEMINARY STUDENT: We pray for our country and first for our military, even if we have sanctions, our patriotism, not becoming less.

VIKTORIA VINYK, UKRAINIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH MEMBER: I speak Russian but I have never been to Russia. I feel really bad but I hope for better in my country.

MCLEAN: So that harmony can return to a church now bitterly divided -- Scott McLean, CNN, Kyiv.


BRUNHUBER: Just ahead, a peaceful protest in downtown Atlanta turns destructive, as elements of the crowd broke windows and set a police cruiser on fire.

Plus, protests Saturday in Tel Aviv are the biggest yet after three weeks of demonstrations over Israel's new far-right government. We'll have the latest in a live report coming up. Please stay with us.




BRUNHUBER: Six people were arrested in downtown Atlanta Saturday after what started as a peaceful protest resulted in property damage. There were no injuries to officers or civilians but windows were broken in three buildings and an Atlanta Police Department cruiser was set on fire.


BRUNHUBER: Atlanta mayor Andre Dickens spoke to reporters after the incident.


MAYOR ANDRE DICKENS, ATLANTA: My message is simple to those who seek to continue this type of criminal behavior: we will find you and we will arrest you and you will be held accountable.

We have arrested several of them this evening and Chief (INAUDIBLE) will give you the details on that. Many of them don't even live in Atlanta or in the state of Georgia and they don't represent the voices of Atlanta.

And to those -- and some of them were found with explosives on them. You heard that correctly, explosives. And that has led to a police officer's car being set on fire.


BRUNHUBER: The protests, which started out peacefully, was in response to the fatal shooting of an activist and the shooting of a Georgia state trooper. That happened on Wednesday near a proposed Atlanta police training facility.

Opponents of the project, who have dubbed it Cop City, have been camped out in the forest for months in an effort to stop construction.

Tens of thousands of people turned out across Israel Saturday to protest the government of prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Israeli police say thousands of demonstrators took to the streets in Haifa, Jerusalem and other cities.

Tel Aviv saw the largest crowds in three weeks of protests. Israeli police say more than 100,000 people turned out. Demonstrators oppose Netanyahu's new right-wing government and also a series of planned of judicial changes. CNN's correspondent Hadas Gold joins us now live from Jerusalem.

So Hadas, take us through what led to this.

HADAS GOLD, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Kim, this is the third week of protests but definitely the largest protests that Israel has seen in several years.

As you noted, more than 100,000 people came out, focused mostly on Tel Aviv but also in other cities like Jerusalem and Haifa. They're not only protesting Benjamin Netanyahu's new right-wing government.

But specifically what's really gotten them out onto the streets were these proposed judicial reforms that were unveiled a few weeks ago. And part of them would allow the parliament -- and that would mean really the party in power -- to overturn some of Israel's supreme court rulings.

There was other reforms would include allowing politicians to have more of a say of what judges are appointed. And for many of the people out on the streets, they see this as a destruction of the independence of the judiciary, changing the balance of power.

And for some of them, they even call it the beginning of the end of Israeli democracy. Benjamin Netanyahu and his allies say that these reforms are a long time coming, that the supreme court has overreached in its rulings, that it will restore balance to the three branches of government.

And Benjamin Netanyahu says this is the will of the people who voted on those November 1st elections and brought in this right-wing government into power.

But the opponents of these reforms are growing. We're seeing more and more people coming out to the streets. Last week, it was 80,000; this week, it's more than 100,000. And for the organizers, they want the momentum to continue, to continue this public pressure campaign on Benjamin Netanyahu.

Now along with those protesters were some big political figures, including the former defense minister, Benny Gantz, and the former prime minister, Yair Lapid.


YAIR LAPID, FORMER ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER (voice-over): What you see here today is a demonstration in support of the country. This is a demonstration for the country. People who love the country have come here today to defend its democracy, to defend its courts, to defend the idea of coexistence and of common good.

There are people here who love Israel, who came to demonstrate for a democratic Jewish state according to the values of the declaration of independence. And we will not give up until we win.


GOLD: Now pushing even more people out into the streets this week is, on Wednesday, the Israeli supreme court ruled that one of Benjamin Netanyahu's top ministers, who was appointed as health and interior minister, cannot serve because of previous criminal convictions.

And the court, actually the attorney general, interpreted the court's order and said that he needs to fire this minister. And we were expecting, at a cabinet meeting this morning, that Benjamin Netanyahu, after several days of not taking any action, that he would actually fire this minister.

So far, we haven't heard that that firing has taken place. That means, for several days now, the prime minister has been going against what the supreme court has ordered him to do. And there's a big question about how much longer this will go on.

Will this minister be actually dismissed?

And if he isn't dismissed, does it plunge Israel into some sort of constitutional crisis, where the prime minister is defying a supreme court order?

BRUNHUBER: Yes, lots at stake there. We'll keep following that story. Hadas Gold in Jerusalem, thank you so much.

Authorities in Peru say they've arrested more than 100 protesters accused of violently invading a university. The interior minister says police conducted a raid Saturday to remove the demonstrators. Officials insist there wasn't a single injury during the operation and that they respected everyone's human rights.


BRUNHUBER: But witnesses have disputed those claims. They say some officers cleared the area with force, using tear gas and shields to push back protesters. Many have participated in nationwide marches against the president.

The Biden White House in full damage control as the FBI turns up more classified materials, this time at the president's private home. We'll look back at the important dates as this political crisis unfolded.

Plus, Lunar New Year celebrations are underway in China. With COVID restrictions lifted, millions are traveling to reunite with family. After the break, a look at what Beijing is saying about the risk of a new surge in COVID infections. Please stay with us.




BRUNHUBER: Welcome back to all of you watching us here in the United States, Canada and around the world. I'm Kim Brunhuber, this is CNN NEWSROOM.

I want to get back to our lead story, more classified documents being found at President Biden's home in Delaware. The FBI conducted the day-long search on Friday with the consent of Biden and his attorneys. Let's look back at how we got here.

On November 2nd, the president's attorneys discovered documents at a think tank office.

On November 4th, the National Archives notified the Justice Department.

On November 9th, one week after the initial discovery, the Justice Department launched its investigation.

And then on December 20th, Biden's attorneys searched the president's Wilmington home, where they found documents with classified markings.

On January 5th, the initial findings were submitted to the U.S. attorney general, Merrick Garland.

On January 11th, Biden's attorneys searched his Delaware home and found additional documents.


BRUNHUBER: And Garland appointed a special counsel, Robert Hur, on January 12th. That same day, White House lawyers found five more pages of classified pages.

And then finally, on Friday, January 20th, the FBI searched Biden's Wilmington home, once again, finding more classified materials.

Now earlier, CNN spoke with Aram Gavoor. He's a professional lecturer in law at George Washington University Law School and he discussed the declassification authority that's been claimed by former president Donald Trump and whether that could be a factor in this case. Listen.


ARAM GAVOOR, PROFESSIONAL LECTURER, GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY LAW SCHOOL: President Trump referenced declassification authority during his presidency but there was no evidence of the declassification, at least as I was able to glean. And that was unsuccessful for him.

Now President Biden is the sitting President of the United States. He is actually the ultimately classification authority under the executive order that governs the classification of national security information and its definition, essentially.

And if he wanted to, although it's -- I don't think he ever would, it would be politically disastrous -- he could declassify the very information that is the subject of the investigation. And it would present a huge conundrum but ultimately one that he would succeed in but with grave political consequences.

But it's also a bit of a "shame on you" moment, because he is the boss. The buck stops with him right now. And also, from what I gather, there were classification markings on the documents that were found by the bureau.

And I think that's a big distinguishing point in terms of the arguments of overclassification that's endemic in the intelligence community, which, by the way, is totally true.


BRUNHUBER: Despite defending former president Trump after more than 300 classified documents were seized from his Florida estate, Republicans were quick to slam President Biden.

And the GOP House Oversight Committee asked on Twitter whether the scavenger hunt was over and said Americans need answers now. The House Judiciary Committee account tweeted a question, both where

doesn't Joe Biden have classified documents and House Republican conference chair, Elise Stefanik, who's accused Biden of weaponizing the FBI after the Mar-a-Lago searches called him, quote, "a grave threat to our national security."

Well, many Chinese are celebrating happy Lunar New Year in this Year of the Rabbit. This holiday comes almost exactly three years after the first COVID lockdown began in Wuhan, China.

Transportation officials estimate that more than 2 billion passenger trips will take place during the holiday season, as people travel to see family for the first time since the zero-COVID restrictions were put in place, then abruptly lifted last month.

Beijing's top health official says that China isn't likely to have a new surge of infections during the holiday travel rush, because he claims 80 percent of the population has already been infected. CNN's Marc Stewart joins us live from Hong Kong.

So Marc, after so many restrictions were finally lifted this year, clearly feels different for so many people.

MARC STEWART, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Without question, Kim. A mask mandate is still in place in Hong Kong but a majority of the restrictions have been lifted and people are on the move.

Take a look here at Victoria Harbor in the middle of Hong Kong. If there was any question it was the Year of the Rabbit, your answer is right here. All afternoon long, all evening long, it's now 6:30 in the evening here in Hong Kong, we have been seeing families.

We have been seeing tourists coming up, taking their pictures in front of these rabbits, many with selfie sticks, it's pretty much selfie central here. There's a chance to get pictures here.

But also a big attraction is going to be Victoria Harbor and Hong Kong's iconic skyline. There's always a light show here every night. But many of the buildings have special designs, special themes in anticipation and excitement of the Lunar New Year.

The red envelope is a big symbol in this part of the world. Inside those envelopes are gifts, many that many families give to young people or to single people in particular. But many years ago, a lot of people were wondering if this kind of gathering would even be possible, because the COVID restrictions in this part of the world were very stiff.

Now travel has opened up in mainland China; 1.4 billion people live there but, during this time of the Lunar New Year, it's estimated, in about a one-month period, there will be more than 2 billion trips.

And while there is concern about the spread of COVID, government leaders in China feel that the peak has hit, about 80 percent of people, they say in China, has had COVID. There's no concern, at least from the government, publicly, of a second or third wave of concerns, although a lot of public health officials will argue otherwise.

I should also point out, Kim, throughout Hong Kong and many parts of Asia, you'll see people holding these red envelopes, as we mentioned before.


STEWART: It's a common token, a way people give gifts to young people, to single people. And that's what's going on today. Lots of time with family and friends and, of course, anticipation for a grand light show here in Victoria Harbor in Hong Kong.

Meantime, Kim, the Year of the Rabbit celebrates peace and prosperity. And that is our wish from Hong Kong to you and our friends in Atlanta.

BRUNHUBER: All right. Thanks so much and we'll see you what repercussions, if any, there will be from all of that travel. Marc Stewart in Hong Kong, thank you so much. Appreciate it.

Well, just ahead, there are reports of nurse shortages in the U.S. and abroad, three years since the start of the pandemic. I'll speak with an expert, who will explain the factors that created the current conditions.

Also ahead, how the Buffalo Bills are preparing for the first game against the Bengals since Damar Hamlin collapsed on the field. We'll have a report from Buffalo coming up. Please stay with us.




BRUNHUBER: Earlier this month, thousands of nurses walked off the job, arguing immense staffing shortages are causing widespread burnout and hindering their ability to properly care for their patients.

Now the nurses say they're working long hours in unsafe conditions without enough pay. So let's look at some of the data of the nursing shortage here across America.

A pre-pandemic study from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services projected that the demand for registered nurses would hit more than 3.6 million by the year 2030.

On top of the existing workforce, the field would have to add nearly 50,000 new registered nurses each year since 2014 to meet that demand. The study also shows the shortage may worsen due to who exactly is leaving the profession.

Between May 2020 and May 2021, registered nurses between the ages of 25 to 34 saw a decline of 5.2 percent.

[05:40:00] BRUNHUBER: Now those between the ages of 35 to 44 saw their numbers decline at an even higher rate of 7.4 percent. So here's how one nurse, who was striking in New York, describes the shortage in her hospital. Listen to this.


MELISSA PERLEONI, PEDIATRIC ONCOLOGY NURSE: At all times, there are too few nurses. If there are only two nurses, you can't leave. So I would come in for a 13-hour shift and not be able to go -- not be able to leave the unit.

If I didn't bring lunch, I would haven't lunch. To go to the bathroom, you're leaving one nurse out there. And if anything goes wrong, you need another nurse for that support.



BRUNHUBER: Joanne Spetz is the director of the Institute for Health Policy Studies at the University of California/San Francisco. And she joins me now.

Thank you so much for being here with us. So we have been hearing all about the nurse shortages in New York, for instance but that's not the only part of the country that's dealing with this issue.

Are you seeing a national trend here?

JOANNE SPETZ, DIRECTOR, INSTITUTE FOR HEALTH POLICY STUDIES, UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA/SAN FRANCISCO: Yes. What I've been hearing is that these issues are occurring in many states, including Oregon, California, Alabama, Florida; it's really nationwide and truly international as well.

BRUNHUBER: Yes, as well. In the U.K., especially.

So what's behind this?

SPETZ: You know, there are multiple factors and they might differ from country-to-country or state-to-state. But one of the things that we are seeing is that a lot of nurses, who were approaching retirement, retired early during the pandemic.

That we're seeing numbers of nurses in various surveys that maybe would have stayed in the workforce for another three to five years, who decided that they did not want to work during the pandemic and left early.

So that was an immediate hit to the workforce. We're also seeing in various parts of the world and country in the United States that some of the nursing education programs have had a really hard time maintaining their enrollments.

And the reasons vary a lot. In some places, it's been a lack of funding or a lot of challenges and pivoting to remote education. In other places, the challenges have been more around prospective students not wanting to have a hybrid education or being hesitant about pursuing nursing. So you've got an inflow that may be declining.

BRUNHUBER: So you spoke about the pandemic there. Many nurses that I've spoken to, they talk about a loss of morale, of not wanting to, you know, do the job anymore, because of what they went through during the pandemic.

I mean, how big of a role is stress and strain playing?

SPETZ: I think the stress from the pandemic has been substantial. And there was one nursing leader that we interviewed for a study who described it, I thought, very eloquently. And I'll paraphrase him as best I can.

He said that there are multiple layers of it. There are a lot of nurses who watched their colleagues die. So straight out, that's a trauma.

They also often watched family members get very sick, so there's a secondary trauma.

And then you add to that having so many colleagues go out on quarantine or sick leave and that led to higher workloads in the workplace. So you have all of this trauma from loss.

On top of that, you also have just a high level of change fatigue. You've had changing pandemic protocols, you've had changing health care protocols.

You've had changes around, do you mask, do you not mask?

What's required in front of your patients?

How do you make sure your patients are safe?

How do you make sure your family is safe?

And that's just exhausting. And for people in health care, it's been even more so, because they have all of these work protections in addition to family protections. And that has -- you know, that's just exhausting.

So when you add the workplace stress and fatigue to the home and general societal fatigue, for nurses, they've been at the crux of a lot of stress.

BRUNHUBER: Yes. I mean, you have these nurses leaving, then it puts more stress on the nurses that are still there. Then they get stressed out. They leave and the vicious cycle continues.

So what effect is this having on patients?

Will care be compromised?

Will it lead to premature deaths, do you think?

SPETZ: The evidence generally shows when you are short staffed in a hospital, that you do end up with harms to patients. You end up with more hospital-acquired infections. You end up with more deaths. You end up with more complications. We're doing a study now on labor and delivery care.


SPETZ: And we're finding you have fewer people who are breast-feeding when they are discharged because they didn't get the support they needed in the hospital to start breast-feeding successfully.

So it really plays out across a number of different health outcomes for patients. And that is, apart from worrying about the workforce itself, we need to worry about the patients they care for as well.

BRUNHUBER: Joanne Spetz, thank you so much for your time. Appreciate it.

SPETZ: My pleasure. Thank you.



BRUNHUBER: All right. We're following breaking news from California, where a mass shooting has been reported. We just have some details in now.

Homicide detectives are responding to a reported shooting that took place late Saturday night in Monterey Park, California. That's according to a spokesperson with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's office.

There are multiple casualties in that shooting incident, according to the "Los Angeles Times," citing law enforcement sources. And we are expecting a law enforcement press conference coming up this morning. We will take you to that when we have that. It's still oncoming, so we will keep monitoring that. And we'll be right back.





BRUNHUBER: Buckingham Palace is revealing details about the three-day celebration of the coronation of King Charles III. It all begins with the coronation itself, on May 6th, at Westminster Abbey.

Thousands of events will take place across the U.K. that weekend and there will be an extra bank holiday the following Monday. Royal watchers believe this coronation will be scaled down from the

last one in 1953, when Queen Elizabeth II was crowned. It was the first live televised royal event and went on for three hours.

Actor Jeremy Renner is home from the hospital, thanking everyone for their well wishes. The "Avengers" star posted on Instagram Saturday, showing him undergoing what he called morning workouts. As we hear from CNN's Chloe Melas, this is just part of Renner's road to recovery.


CHLOE MELAS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Jeremy Renner posting an update for fans on Instagram, telling everyone that he broke 30 bones in that snowplow accident that took place at his home on New Year's Day.

And it's answering the question that so many have had after hearing that 9-1-1 call, in which his neighbor tells the EMS or the dispatch on the phone that he had been crushed by this 14,000-pound Sno-Cat that he owns. Take a listen to a little bit of that 9-1-1 call that was released the other day.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Shallow breath.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A lot of pain. He's conscious.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We've got him covered in blankets. His head's covered.

Don't be drifting off.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is he starting to kind of drift off into sleep?


Stay awake.


MELAS: We know that that call went on for over 20 minutes and that it took paramedics, you know, about that time or a little more to get to him because a lot of the roads were closed off in the area because of the unprecedented snowfall in the Lake Tahoe, Nevada, area.

Look, he is lucky to be alive. It will be a long road to recovery for him. He is posting updates, he is on social media and on Instagram and letting his fans know how he's doing and just, thankfully, he's going to be OK. Back to you. (END VIDEOTAPE)



BRUNHUBER: All right. Before we go, here's "Saturday Night Live's" take on FOX Network's NFL Sunday's show, with commentary from special correspondent, embattled congressman George Santos.


BOWEN YANG, COMEDIAN, "GEORGE SANTOS": I'm sort of the real Bo Jackson and I'm proud to be the first African American quarterback to ever dunk a football.

MOLLY KEARNEY, COMEDIAN, "FOX SPORTS ANCHOR": And where did you play college ball again?

"SANTOS": The University of College.

DEVON WALKER, COMEDIAN, "FOX SPORTS ANCHOR": George, why don't you walk us through what happened on the field tonight?

"SANTOS": With pleasure. You see, Philadelphia was in trouble until they turned to their secret weapon, George Santos.

Just look at the stats. I completed 36 of 25 passes for 300 yards and 600 yards. I had 12 touchdowns, 17 rebounds and 10 RBIs. And Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy gave me an Oscar, all at the age of 18. Incredible.


BRUNHUBER: Well, in case you haven't been following the latest lines on the real George Santos, he's been in the spotlight since reports surfaced that he lied about the key details on his resume. Santos has admitted to falsehoods about his background but he has refused to resign.

All right. That wraps this hour of CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Kim Brunhuber. You can follow me on Twitter @KimBrunhuber. "CNN THIS MORNING" is next.