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CNN This Morning

Chaos Intensifies as U.S. Government Frozen without a Speaker; Audio from Hamlin's Collapse: 'Going to Need Everybody'; Murder Suspect Seen Placing Garbage Bags in Neighbors' Bins; CNN Observes Incoming, Outgoing Artillery Since Russian Ceasefire; Possible 5th Shooting Directed at Homes, Businesses in New Mexico; Trump Sued by Estate of Capitol Officer Who Died After Attack. Aired 6-6:30a ET

Aired January 06, 2023 - 06:00   ET


CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Across Northern California today, all of California for tomorrow. And the snow in the mountains. If you're going to the mountains, you need to kind of keep it in between these storms, because many of these roadways will be impassable by the time we work our way into tomorrow. So we'll keep watching that.


CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: All right. Yes, we will. A couple of fatalities with that big storm. So be careful out there, folks. It has been dangerous and deadly.

Thank you, Chad Myers. Nice to see you this Friday morning.

Thanks for joining me. I'm Christine Romans. CNN THIS MORNING starts right now.


REP. KEVIN MCCARTHY (R-CA): So if this takes a little longer, and it doesn't meet your deadline, that's OK. Because it's not -- it's not how you start. It's how you finish. If we finish well, we'll be very successful.


DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: It's very similar to, as you know, parents trying to just, OK.


LEMON: Calm down. It's going to be great. Because there's no new deal. No clear end in sight. Kevin McCarthy has been successful at failing to get the votes for the 11th time.

Good morning there. You see us again. It is Groundhog Day. Kaitlan is live at the Capitol. Poppy and I are here in New York. It's become a thing. And this hasn't happened in 164 years. Not us. I'm talking about the speakership.

Vote No. 12 just hours away now, and we are all over the action at the Capitol.

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN ANCHOR: Yes, and Don, Poppy, as Kevin McCarthy is limping toward the fourth day of this, he and his allies are still negotiating behind closed doors, signaling they'll make more concessions in this frantic effort that we're seeing to secure votes.

We should note, those are concessions that would diminish his power as speaker and actually embolden the very rebels that he is negotiating with.

Also this.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Go ahead and go over to the cot I don't like how he went down.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going to need everybody. All call, all call. We need everybody.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Come bring everybody. Need (UNINTELLIGIBLE) everybody.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bring the cot with the medics, all of you, and get wheeled out here.


HARLOW: You heard it there. An all call for the medical staff, moments after Damar Hamlin collapsed. Hear how the emergency response played out, as we get encouraging news on Hamlin's recovery.

COLLINS: Yes, but we start this morning on Capitol Hill, where there's still no speaker this morning, as Kevin McCarthy is going to try again in just a few hours, when the House is set to reconvene at noon today after adjourning last night.

We have seen this very scene 11 times now. It's the House clerk, calling each member's name to vote, only in the end for McCarthy to fail to meet the threshold every single time.

It's been a three-day stretch of defeats in a speaker contest that is now the longest in 164 years. Despite promising these major concessions to the Republican hold-outs, McCarthy did not gain any ground on vote after vote after vote yesterday.

But he still says he's making progress, he thinks. And a lot to answer for when he left last night, as reporters swarmed him.

CNN's Manu Raju was in the middle of it, pushing McCarthy for answers. It's remarkable, in that it's the longest we've heard from McCarthy since all of this began. Listen to these shouted questions McCarthy answers.



MCCARTHY: No, no. I'm not going to need (ph) time line. I just think we've got some progress going on. We're got members talking. I think we've got a little movement, so we'll see.

MANU RAJU, CNN CHIEF CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Have you had to walk back threats of your stripped committee assignments from these members?

MCCARTHY: We're not -- we're not stripping. I didn't make those.

RAJU: Was that a mistake, to make that threat?

MCCARTHY: I didn't make that threat.

RAJU: Mike Rogers did.

MCCARTHY: Yes. Well, you're saying I made the threats. I did not make the threat. And no, members are not going to lose their committee assignments.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: -- drag out for at this point?

MCCARTHY: I'll let you know. We're working through, and we made good progress today. So we'll continue to --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did your people never go through you (ph)?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- take this long with the negotiations?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're three days into this. This is the longest since the 1850s.

MCCARTHY: Well, I had the longest speech on the floor, so apparently, I like to make history.

RAJU: You could, sir -- you're giving one member the power to oust you if you're speaker. Aren't you going to --

MCCARTHY: That's the way -- that's the way it's always been, except for the last speaker. And I think I'm very fine with that.

RAJU: You're fine with --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Does it cut your potential power as speaker?

MCCARTHY: Has it cut -- has it undercut the power of the other speakers?

RAJU: It was used over John Boehner.

MCCARTHY: So why would it cut mine?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- haven't been in this position since 1859. Doesn't that inherently mean that you would be a weaker speaker?



MCCARTHY: It would -- it would only be a weaker speaker if I was afraid of it. And I'm not a weak -- or --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you concerned that there might be more than four who will just never vote for you, among the Republicans?

MCCARTHY: No, I think we're good.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you -- could (ph) you go in the conference?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you worried about losing votes from moderates to give too much away?

MCCARTHY: Everybody's involved in it. We've got to get there completely. I mean, look --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. -- Mr. McCarthy, you --

MCCARTHY: Could I finish his answer first? His question? Thank you. Look, this is a new thought we're going to have to have. We have a five-seat majority. So it's not one side is going to get more than the other. It's the entire conference is going to have to learn how to work together.

So it's better that we go through this process right now, so we can achieve the things we want to achieve for the American public. What our commitment was.


So if this takes a little longer, doesn't meet your deadline, that's OK. Because it's not -- it's not how you start. It's how you finish. If we finish well, then we'll be very successful.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you plan to go to conference, Mr. McCarthy?

RAJU: You've been doing this for two months, though. Why didn't -- why didn't these sort it out before January 3?

MCCARTHY: We tried to sort it out.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you plan to go to conference?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you for stopping.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. McCarthy, do you plan to go to conference?


COLLINS: And to talk about everything that happened there, CNN's Lauren Fox joins us now. You know, it struck me several times during all of that, but him saying that -- that one vote to motion to oust the speaker only scares you -- is only bad if he's scared of it. He said he's not scared of it.

But I mean, we've seen how it's been wielded in the past. He should be scared of it.

LAUREN FOX, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, I mean, he said he's not going to be a weaker speaker. He doesn't think he's a weak leader. But the reality is the concessions he's making will make him weaker.

And there's just no way around that very crucial fact. I mean, not even talking about this vote to oust a potential speaker, but also the fact that all of a sudden, he has to put Freedom Caucus-aligned members on committees like Budget, like Appropriations, like the Rules Committee. Those kinds of concessions really make a strong difference in how you can even govern, how you can legislate.

The rules committee is supposed to be the speaker's committee. They dictate all the rules on the House floor for how a bill is going to come up. So he is looking at a much weaker speakership if he can ever pull this off -- Kaitlan.

COLLINS: And I think what Manu said there at the end, you've been trying for two months to get these votes. Now we're seeing it after 11 rounds.

I do think it speaks to why wasn't there a bigger push like this, you know, a month ago to avoid a scene like this playing out on the floor.

FOX: Yes, I think it's pretty remarkable that he went to the floor knowing he didn't have the votes, and it just never felt like the momentum was moving in his direction.

But I think this echoes back to 2015 when he bowed out of the speaker's race. Eventually, folks got Paul Ryan to run. Paul Ryan, really a reluctant speaker; he didn't want the job either.

And I think McCarthy looks back at that, seeing that Paul Ryan had some of the same problems he's experiencing now, and says what am I going to do, step aside and let somebody else get this job and, in six months, they're the enemy of the Freedom Caucus, or these 20 hardliners? That is a big reason why I think McCarthy is staying in this race right now, Kaitlan.

COLLINS: Yes. And it stuck out to me last night one of the hardliners said that, whoever is going to be the speaker has to agree to their demands, they say.

You have a busy day ahead of you, and the House is set to come back at noon today. We'll check back in with you. Thank you for breaking all of that down.

Ahead, we're also going to speak with Republican Congressman David Valadao. He is supporting Kevin McCarthy. He's very interesting. Remember, he is one of those Republicans who voted to impeach Trump. We'll tell you what he is saying about the Republicans who are blocking McCarthy's path to the speakership, Don.

LEMON: All right. We'll check back in. We thank you very much.

And this morning, we are hearing what the first urgent moments sounded like as emergency workers rushed to save Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin after his on-field collapse Monday night.

Doctors say he is making remarkable improvement after suffering cardiac arrest, though his road to recovery could be long.

Let's go to CNN's Adrienne Broaddus, live for us in Cincinnati with more this morning. Hello, it is incredible how quick the response -- the quick response, I should say, saved his life.

ADRIENNE BROADDUS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely, Don. And people finally heard the news they had been waiting to hear: that Damar Hamlin is awake and communicating by writing.

His first question, asking, "Did we win the game?" And doctors here at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center say that update fans received yesterday goes back to that quick response on the field Monday night.

The doctors crediting the Bills medical team for recognizing that something was seriously wrong. Injuries happen on the football field often, but doctors here say it is rare to have such a quick response. And that response prompted physicians to be at Damar's side within minutes. Listen in.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Go ahead and go over to the cot. I don't like how he went down.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going to need everybody. All call, all call. We need everybody.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Come bring everybody. Need (UNINTELLIGIBLE) everybody.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Bring the cot with the medics, all of you, and get wheeled out here.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Go ahead for field medic.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I need another medic in the back, please. Medic in the back of the bus.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Affirmative, we are right outside the gate.



BROADDUS: Critical moments, but that team remains so calm.

Doctors also sharing with us that there was prompt recognition that Damar lost his pulse, which led to immediate bystander CPR. And if they had awaited minutes or seconds longer, the outcome, Don, could have been different.


LEMON: Yes. Way worse. Thank you very much. Adrienne Broaddus in Cincinnati this morning.

HARLOW: We do have an update on the suspect accused of murdering four Idaho college students, making his first appearance in court since being extradited from Pennsylvania.

He -- This all comes as a police affidavit tells us a lot about the evidence authorities say connects Bryan Kohberger to those killings.

Veronica Miracle joins us live in Moscow, Idaho.

Seven weeks it took a little over seven weeks to find the suspect. And now we actually know how they got to him.

VERONICA MIRACLE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Poppy, so many disturbing details and what police say happened that morning and then in the weeks to follow in the affidavit that was released right before in court. One of the families was there in the front row, and they hardly ever took their eyes off of Bryan Kohberger.


MIRACLE (voice-over): Bryan Kohberger, clad in an orange jump suit, appeared in an Idaho courtroom Thursday.


MIRACLE (voice-over): The 28-year-old is charged with the brutal stabbings of four University of Idaho students more than seven weeks ago.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. Kohberger, I'm going to advise you of the rights you have in this case.

MIRACLE (voice-over): In newly-released court documents, investigators detail the evidence that led to his eventual arrest.

According to the affidavit, Kohberger's DNA profile, obtained from the trash at his family's home, matched DNA on a tan leather knife sheath left behind at the crime scene, and was found laying on the bed of one of the victims.

That same document says one of the surviving roommates says she was awoken around 4 a.m., heard crying from Xana Kernodle's room, and heard a voice say, "It's OK. I'm going to help you." And that she heard the crying and saw a figure clad in black clothing and a mask.

She describes him as 5'10" or taller, male, not very muscular, but athletically built with bushy eyebrows, saying he walked past her as she stood in a frozen, shocked face.

But questions still remain about why no one called 911 until almost eight hours later.

The document also details multiple sightings of a suspect vehicle from surveillance footage, showing a white Hyundai Elantra like this one that helped lead to Kohberger's arrest.

About two weeks after the murders, police from Washington State University, where Kohberger attended school, flagged his vehicle, later seen at a traffic stop in mid-December in Indiana while driving with his father to Pennsylvania.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is this your car?



MIRACLE (voice-over): And before the cross-country drive and just five days after the murders, Kohberger received a new license plate for his car, according to Washington state licensing documents.

Cell phone records also show that Kohberger's phone was near the victim's residence at least a dozen times since June, including about five hours after police believe he committed the murders, according to court documents.

Kohberger, seated with a new court-appointed attorney, responded to each count of murder.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you understand?


MIRACLE (voice-over): While no evidence was released that connects Kohberger to the victims or any indication of motive. The pain for the victims' family is all too real as some sat in the courtroom.

SHANON GRAY, GONCALVES FAMILY ATTORNEY: It's obviously an emotional time for the family, seeing the defendant for the first time. This is the beginning of the criminal justice system, and the family will be here for the long haul.


MIRACLE: And there was an entire page redacted from that affidavit. So there are still questions to be answered, including why this happened. What was the motive? He is next due in court on January 12 -- Poppy.

HARLOW: Veronica, thank you for the update. Coming up in just a few hours, 8 a.m. Eastern right here, you're going

to hear from the father of victim Kaylee Goncalves. Why he says the suspect was afraid to look him in the eyes when they were in court.

LEMON: And now to Ukraine where a Russian-declared 36-hour cease-fire is now in effect. Vladimir Putin ordered the temporary truce to coincide with the Russian Orthodox Christmas.

Ukraine, for its part, hasn't agreed to the cease-fire, calling the move by Putin hypocrisy.

Scott McLean live for us in Kyiv this morning. Scott, is this unilateral -- good morning. Is this unilateral cease-fire holding?

SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The answer is absolutely not, Don. And merry Christmas Eve from here in Kyiv, where a prayer service just wrapped up here with the head of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and members of the military.

And they will need all the prayers that they can get, because of course, as you mentioned, the Ukrainians have given no indication that they'll observe this cease-fire.

And of course, the Russians have given every indication that they will return fire and will not allow the Ukrainians to easily improve their position along the front line.

And even just now since this cease-fire has been in effect, my colleagues on the front line, Ben Wedeman, Karim Hader (ph), have witnessed first-hand incoming and outgoing fire along the front line in Eastern Ukraine.


And just about 25 minutes ago, the air-raid sirens went off here in Kyiv. The head of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, we spoke to him briefly after this service, he said that that is ample evidence that the Russians had no intention of respecting this cease-fire.

One other thing to mention, Don, is that the former president of Russia said that the Ukrainians had rejected the hand of Christian mercy. I've spoken to plenty of soldiers who said that there is nothing Christian after Russia's invasion of their country.

LEMON: Right on. Scott McLean, thank you very much. We appreciate that.

Her police officer fiance died after responding to the January 6th Capitol insurrection. And now she is suing former President Donald Trump.

Plus this.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Five shots through the -- my front door, my front window.


HARLOW: A series of shootings apparently targeting elected officials in New Mexico. We have a live report ahead.


HARLOW: Well, this morning police in Albuquerque are looking at five shootings that are possibly connected and targeting the homes and the offices of Democrat elected officials. The most recent shooting involves the former campaign office of New Mexico's attorney general.


LINDA LOPEZ, NEW MEXICO STATE SENATOR: It's very scary. You know, as a mom, it's just -- it's something that you never want to experience.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right through the front door, five straight -- five shots straight through the -- my front door, my front window. Went straight all the way through my house, through my living room. Out my back window.

DEBBIE O'MALLEY, BERNALILLO COUNTY COMMISSIONER: Both my husband and I were -- you know, just sat up because of this noise. We -- it felt like somebody was using their fist to pound on our door.

It's very disturbing that we have -- that people think it's OK or that they -- they feel emboldened to do things like this.


HARLOW: Lucy Kafanov has been reporting on this and joins us live this morning. That is very scary. Five different incidents.

LUCY KAFANOV, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Poppy, good morning. Not as good of a morning in Albuquerque where detectives are investigating these multiple incidents where the homes or offices of local elected leaders have been targeted by gunfire in the past month.

All five are Democrats, as you've pointed out. The shootings all taking place on separate days. We had three in December, one just before noon yesterday, another on January 3rd, when at least eight shots were fired at the home of state Senator Linda Lopez, whose soundbite you heard just moments ago. These of those bullets passing through her 10-year-old daughter's bedroom.

And while no one was hurt or injured, understandably, this is some scary stuff. Police describing this investigation as a top priority and are working with federal partners, including the FBI, and asking the public for their help.

LEMON: Any new leads on a suspect?

KAFANOV: No leads in terms of specific suspect or suspects. They do have some leads in this investigation that they're looking into.

But police also say they can't even be for sure whether these shootings are connected, that they're politically or personally motivated. Obviously, there's some concern that they might be, which is why we're talking about this today.

And it is the anniversary of the January 6th Capitol attack, so there is -- this is coming against the backdrop of increased concerns about political violence across the nation -- guys.

LEMON: All right. Lucy, thank you very much. Appreciate that.

And up next here on CNN this morning, new legal trouble for former President Donald Trump on the two-year anniversary of the Capitol insurrection. A lawsuit filed against him by the fiance of fallen U.S. Capitol Officer Brian Sicknick, that's next.



HARLOW: Welcome back to CNN THIS MORNING. You're looking at live pictures of Capitol Hill, where so much is going on today.

Here's what is coming up this hour.

Donald Trump sued by the fiancee of Brian Sicknick. He was the Capitol Police officer who died responding to the insurrection. Of course, today marks two years since the insurrection. His fiancee taking legal action against the former president.

Also, the House speaker drama now raising the alarm over the debt ceiling. Our Christine Romans here to break it down.

And also, some really significant news out of Prince Harry's new book. We'll tell you what it includes.

HARLOW: As Poppy mentioned, today marks two years since the attack on the seat of America's democracy when pro-Trump rioters stormed the U.S. Capitol to impeded the peaceful transfer of power after Donald Trump's 2020 election loss to Joe Biden.

Now the estate of Brian Sicknick, a Capitol Police officer who died after responding to the insurrection, is suing the former president.

Here with the details is CNN senior legal affairs correspondent, Paula Reid.

Paula, good morning to you. What do you know?


We're actually getting some news about special counsel Jack Smith. We've learned that he recently returned to the United States. He had been working abroad in Europe, following a bike accident. And now that he's back, we've learned that he is staffing up. And Don,

he is going to need all the help he can get, because we have learned that he has a mountain of new evidence to sift through, as he decides whether the former president and his associates should be charged related to January 6th.


MICHAEL FANONE, D.C. POLICE OFFICER: We cannot afford to brush political violence under the rug or turn a blind eye when others encourage it.

REID (voice-over): While President Biden commemorates the second anniversary of the January 6th Capitol attack by presenting medals to D.C. Police Officer Michael Fanone and other law enforcement officials who responded that day, the Justice Department continues the biggest criminal investigation in its history.

Already, more than 950 people have been arrested for their alleged participation in the deadly riot. Roughly half have pleaded guilty, and 40 have been convicted at trial. Just one has been acquitted.

The House Select Committee that also investigated January 6th believes that prosecutors should charge former President Trump and his associates, as well.

REP. JAMIE RASKIN (D-MD): We want to make sure that the key organizers and movers of this attack don't escape the scrutiny of the justice system.

REID (voice-over): That decision is now up to special counsel Jack Smith, appointed to oversee the investigation, and efforts by Trump and his allies to overturn the results of the 2020 election.

MERRICK GARLAND, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: Based on recent developments, including the former president's announcement that he is a candidate for president in the next election and the sitting president's stated intention to be a candidate, as well, I have concluded that it is in the public interest to appoint a special counsel.

REID (voice-over): Attorney General Merrick Garland promised that Smith's appointment wouldn't delay the investigation.

GARLAND: He promised to the American people in his own statement that there would be no pause or hiccup in his work.

REID (voice-over): But Smith is still in the process of putting together his team, bringing on two long-time associates who specialize in public corruption cases, a source tells CNN.

Smith also must comb through a massive amount of evidence, including what the January 6th Committee recently turned over and discovery collected from lawyers for Trump allies late last year, some of which has not even been opened yet, according to sources familiar with the probe.

Smith himself fired off a round of subpoenas to officials in seven key.