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CNN This Morning

Recovery Efforts Begin In Storm Ravaged Southeastern U.S.; 25 Million People Under Flood Watches In California; WH Faces Question In Special Counsel Documents Investigation; Kyiv Mayor: "There Is An Attack On The Capital"; UK Condemns Iran's "Barbaric" Execution Of Dual Citizen; Official" School Was Warned Six-Year-Old Might Have Gun; Egg Prices Explode, Now 60% Higher Than Last Year; Navalny's Daughter: Father's Condition Is "Not Good". Aired 8-9a ET

Aired January 14, 2023 - 08:00   ET




BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning. Buenos dias, and welcome to "CNN This Morning," Saturday, January 14th. I'm Boris Sanchez, or as Amara called me earlier, sorby (ph).

AMARA WALKER, CNN ANCHOR: Sorby, no, I think I said soros (ph).

SANCHEZ: Soros (ph)? I like that better. Sort of like a dinosaur.

WALKER: Was like a mixture of sorry and Boris and yes, you are my Boris soros you sound like a dinosaur.

Welcome everyone. Thanks for being with us. I appreciate you starting your morning with us.

SANCHEZ: And great to be with you as always, Amara. We begin this morning in the southeastern United States, where recovery efforts are underway after severe storms killed at least nine people Thursday night in Alabama and Georgia. At least 37 tornadoes were reported with one twister wrecking parts of Selma, Alabama, a historic American city known for its role in the civil rights movement. Seven of those confirmed fatalities were a neighboring Autauga County, Alabama, where the storm caused widespread damage to homes and businesses.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was scary and I thought about you said it was coming and we just didn't know exactly what to do. We don't have a storm shelter here.

NATHANIEL WALKER, ALABAMA STORM SURVIVOR: About two or three minutes before the storm came and I saw a lot of dark clouds over the school right here, this (INAUDIBLE) school.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. WALKER: And I went to the center of the house and just sat down. And man, I really thought that I thought the worst. I'd be quite frank with you.


WALKER: Thousands in the region are still without power this morning, and Alabama Governor Kay Ivey has asked President Biden to expedite disaster relief funds.


GOV. KAY IVEY (R-AL): Well, a glimpse was very revealing. It's far worse than anything I had envisioned or seen on television. Roofs are just gone and trees looked like toothpicks, and there's a lot of work to be done here.


WALKER: And Georgia Governor Brian Kemp has confirmed that one of those nine deaths included a state employee killed while responding to Thursday's storm, as well as a five-year-old boy who died when a tree fell on top of a car. An Alabama family says it's a miracle they are alive after that powerful round of storms and tornadoes ripped through their state. I want to show you what's left of the house Randall MacLeod called home. They were trapped under all this debris for three hours until first responders were able to come and get them.

Joining me now are Randall and Tiffany McCloud. Really appreciate you joining us and thankful that you survived this. First of all, to you, Randall, I just -- reading your story is heart stopping. Tell us what happened to your house, what you saw, what you felt when this tornado touched down and you were in the middle of it.

RANDALL MCCLOUD, SURVIVED ALABAMA TORNADO: We heard the storm coming. I had a cousin, he got my mother into the hallway. And I was going to the front door to see exactly which way it was coming from. I opened the front door and the porch disappeared and trees started falling. I was trying to make it around to the hallway and get in there where they were at. And as I was stepping into the living room to get to the hallway, the whole floor system, living room, and everything just disappeared out of one of my feet in just a flash. And I fell through the floor system and was able to crawl back out off the ground, up into the house and get into the hallway. And basically, all we had left standing was the hallway that they were in and the small portion of the kitchen where I was standing, but it just disappeared in the blink of an eye.

WALKER: Oh, my goodness. You fell into the floor?

R. MCCLOUD: Well, there wasn't any floor system there anymore. It's conventional foundation. So, it took that end of the house completely off. I was going out of the kitchen into the living room, and as I stepped into the living room, the floor disappeared under my feet, and I went straight to the ground and had to crawl back up into the end that was still standing, the end of the hallway. They would crawl back up into the hallway.


WALKER: Oh, my goodness. How are you feeling this morning? Do you feel like it's a miracle that you survived?

R. MCCLOUD: Yes. All those scrapes and bruises and stuff I've got doesn't compare to all of us lives and everything that was saved. I mean that's minor.

WALKER: And Tiffany, you must have been beside yourself trying to find your father and your grandmother, because that was your grandmother's home. Tell me what you went through.

TIFFANY MCCLOUD, FATHER AND GRANDDAUGHTER SURVIVED ALABAMA TORNADO: Right. He called me right before it happened. Whenever I did try to call him back, I couldn't get in touch with him. And I finally got in touch with my cousin and asked if everyone was OK. And she said yes, she said the house is gone. You know, all I could think about was, I have to get to them. I left work and immediately tried to get there. It took me three hours to get ten minutes up the road because of the tree damage and paramedics, ambulance, everything. And I just knew I had to get to them.

WALKER: Tell me, Tiffany, when you saw the house, what your reaction was, what's left of it and where everyone is staying now.

T. MCCLOUD: They're staying with my uncle as of right now, until we can figure out a more permanent solution. We don't even know where to start, to be honest. But whenever I saw the house, I had to park a mile and half of the road and basically run to the house. I couldn't get to it. But when I saw it, there's just no words. I mean that was our home, where we lived our entire life, their entire lives. There's no words.

WALKER: I'm sorry for just the fact that you've lost this home and so many memories. I understand that there was no insurance on this home, is that correct, Tiffany?

T. MCCLOUD: Correct, yes.

WALKER: So, are you crowdfunding I mean, how are you trying to get funds to, I guess, rebuild?

T. MCCLOUD: I do have a GoFund me set up. (INAUDIBLE) people don't want to do the GoFundMe or getting help from the community, friends, family, any way that anybody wants to help or donate, we're accepting anything, prayers, anything.

WALKER: Randall, I'm sure you're still processing what happened. How are you doing emotionally and also what kind of, I guess, support have you gotten from your community?

R. MCCLOUD: It's just been an abundance of people helping out. We probably had 25 to 30 family members, friends, relatives working all yesterday and some Thursday afternoon right after the storm, people just started showing up. We had first responders and fire department emergency workers and all were there. There was probably 20 or 25 of those cutting the roads and stuff out to get to the house. Had a family friend come over with a skid steer. Once they got the trees cut to the house, he moved the debris and stuff to the house where they could get a gurney in there and get my mother out of the house. And then once we got her out. We felt a lot better, but it was just sitting there thinking any moment, rest of the roof and stuff was going to cave in on us and just waiting for somebody to get there. But it's been something I really don't want to experience again (INAUDIBLE).

WALKER: Tell me, Randall, before we go, you know, what you were doing during those three hours waiting for help to get to you and how your mother is doing now. Where is she?

R. MCCLOUD: Where is who? My mother?


R. MCCLOUD: She's with me, where my brother's house at the moment staying with them. It was just trying to make sure that the ceiling wasn't going to fall onto something I had moved a little. She got a walker with a seat on it. We got her in the walker, had a blanket on her, and I pushed her up against the refrigerator as close as I could get. That was the most stable structure (INAUDIBLE) if the roof collapsed, the refrigerator might take some of, you know, the force of the roof coming down some. So, we had this little small area there in the kitchen that were all kind of huddled together.

T. MCCLOUD: Yes, (INAUDIBLE) in her lap.

R. MCCLOUD: Yes, my mother's little dog is a little four pounds where he's kind of delicate older puppy, but he sat in her lap, wrapped up in a blanket with her the whole time and has a little bit of comfort to her. But it was an ordeal.

WALKER: Absolutely. Listen, I'm glad that you all made that with your lives, including your little chihuahua. We wish you the best and we're thinking of you during this recovery. Randall and Tiffany McCloud, thank you.


T. MCCLOUD: Thank you.

R. MCCLOUD: Thank you.

SANCHEZ: The National Guard is no longer assisting with the search for a missing five-year-old boy in California who was swept away by rushing floodwaters earlier this week. Local rescue teams are still looking for him as some 25 million people in the state remain under flood watch is this weekend because of more heavy rain. Officials also say to expect hail and powerful winds in some areas too.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) NANCY WARD, DIRECTOR, CALIFORNIA GOVERNOR'S OFFICE OF EMERGENCY SERVICES: We are not out of the woods yet. The threat to communities remains and waters will continue to rise even after these storms have passed.


SANCHEZ: The recent storms have killed at least 18 people, and officials are worried that massive flooding could cut the Monterey Peninsula completely off from the rest of California.

WALKER: Are tracking it all for us in the CNN Weather Center, all right, so give us the latest. on where the system is and where it's headed.

ALLISON CHINCHAR, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Yes, that's right. So, we take a look at where the storm is right now. The heaviest rain is pushing into portions of Northern California, southwestern Oregon and Central California. You've got some pretty heavy rainfall right just to the northwest of Sacramento. And remember, folks, these people have not had much of a break from the previous system earlier in the week. So, because that ground is fully saturated, now you're adding more rain on top of it. That's why you've got these flood watches in effect, and it includes over 25 million people. So that just kind of goes to show you the scope of how large this next atmospheric river event is.

You'll notice throughout the day that it begins to spread from Northern and Central California down into Southern California, which has had at least a couple of days worth of a break from the rain. Now you're going to start to see that moisture surging back into that area. And again, very brief, a very, very brief before the very next event comes in late Sunday and continues into the day Monday. And that one likely to have even more moisture with it than the event that's taking place today.

In addition to rain and snow, you also have winds, a lot of wind advisories out here across California, Nevada, as well as Oregon. Those wind gusts up around 50 miles per hour, once you start getting up into the higher elevations, now you're talking 60 to 70 miles per hour winds. So, power outages are still going to be a concern. Same thing with trees coming down.

Overall, in terms of rain, most of these areas, especially along the coast, about two to four inches, but some areas could pick up even more. In terms of the Sierra, you're talking feet of snow, likely one to three feet. The thing is, when you factor in that secondary system and you go through the day Monday in total, likely three to six feet of snow.

And again, it's not just for the Sierras. You've got winter weather advisories and winter storm warnings spread out over the Intermountain west because that's where that system is going to eventually go in the coming days. So, it's going to take that moisture with it. You're going to notice a lot more of that snow in a few more places. The good news is there is light at the end of the tunnel, Boris and Amara, once we get to the end of the upcoming week, and especially the following week, we finally start to see conditions dry back out in California.

SANCHEZ: And some much needed relief in that area. Allison Chinchar, thank you so much.

WALKER: Thanks, Allison.

It was a very lucky Friday the 13th for someone in Maine. A single ticket there won the Mega Millions jackpot worth, I don't want to say it, Boris. $1.35 billion.

SANCHEZ: That is a lot of money. It's the second largest jackpot in the lottery's history and the first time ever that someone in Maine won the Mega Millions. The big winner has not yet come forward. Probably smart of them to stay hiding away. When they do, they could take up a potential lump sum cash payout of $724.6 million. The question, Amara, do you take the lump sum?


SANCHEZ: Do you take the annual payment? You take the lump sum?

WALKER: Yes, of course you take the lump sum. Absolutely. Who knows what happens, like, five, six, seven years from now, they could say, oh, lottery has gone bankrupt, or I don't know, I'm just dependent (INAUDIBLE)? So, and I'm greedy. You want to take the lump sum?

SANCHEZ: Yes. You're more honest than I am. Yes. I think you have to take the lump sum because it immediately changes your life. I think the annual installments are better. Tax wise, people say it's a smarter, discipline thing to do, but I'm just like you. At least you're open about your greediness.

WALKER: I got smarter and --


SANCHEZ: Wonderful, wonderful.

So, still ahead, the White House tries to go on with business as usual as questions are mounting over President Biden's handling of classified documents. What we're learning about the special counsel investigation and why Republicans in Congress say they're looking into the Justice Department's response.

WALKER: And developing this morning, powerful explosions are heard across Ukraine as Russia launches another round of attacks. We're live in Kyiv, next.



SANCHEZ: A lot of questions, but few answers from the White House about the growing controversy over the handling of classified documents. WALKER: President Biden is under pressure over the discovery of those

classified documents at a former office and at his home in Delaware. A special counsel has been appointed to investigate.

SANCHEZ: CNN White House correspondent Arlette Saenz joins us now live from the White House. Arlette, what's the latest?

ARLETTE SAENZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, the White House is facing these persistent questions about the handling of the classified documents, but so far has really been able to provide very few answers. For many, here at the White House, aides are completely in the dark regarding the details of this situation. The strategizing has been left to a small group of advisors as well as outside lawyers. A source confirming that Bob Bauer will be representing President Biden in a personal capacity in these classified documents case. They have a long working relationship together as Bauer also worked for Biden during the 2020 campaign. And it is that set of lawyers that will be working with the special counsel as they conduct this investigation into the handling of classified documents.


Officials here at the White House have repeatedly tried to stress that they are cooperating every step of the way with the National Archives, the Justice Department, and now the Special Counsel. And there's still so many questions about these classified documents that were found first at that Penn Biden Center office that President Biden used after he left the Vice President's office as well as documents that were found at his residence in Wilmington, Delaware. Of the documents that were found at the Penn Biden Center here, 10 of those were considered classified documents, which included information regarding Ukraine, Iran, and the United Kingdom. There were also some memos that were found, one from -- then Vice President Biden written to President Obama and other briefing memos that were preparing then Vice President for phone calls with the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, as well as Donald Tusk, the President of the European Council.

But still so many questions about how exactly those documents got there, both to the office and to his residence up in Wilmington, Delaware, as well as how the White House has proceeded with disclosing to the public that these documents had been found. The first set were found on November 2nd, but it wasn't until Monday when it was revealed in the press that these documents had been found and turned over to the National Archives. Additionally, it wasn't until later in the week that the White House acknowledged that there was another batch of documents found at the Delaware residence. But the White House yesterday did bristle at any suggestions that they've been avoiding questions.


KARINE JEAN-PIERRE, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: I've been in here almost every day since we got back from Mexico City, standing here taking your questions at length so that we're not avoiding anything here. And you've heard from the President at least twice. And -- we have put forth multiple statements from the White House Counsel's office.


SAENZ: But one thing that the White House has also tried to make clear is that they are still conducting business as usual, as they are trying to show that they don't want to let these conversations about the classified documents overtake their conversation, the conversation. In many cases, it really has overshadowed much of their work in the past week.

SANCHEZ: Arlette Saenz reporting from the White House. Thank you so much.

SAENZ: Thank you.

SANCHEZ: Our next guest says that these incidents with classified documents point out a separate, long-standing problem the over classification of documents.

Bradley P. Moss is a national security lawyer. He's currently a partner at the law office of Mark S. Zaid. Thank you so much for joining us this morning, Bradley. We appreciate your time.

You wrote a piece for this week. You say, quote, there are millions of clearance holders in the federal bureaucracy, and the default desire to overclassify documents out of excessive abundances of caution means that there's simply too much classified paperwork floating around to properly manage. I guess a counterargument could be that an abundance of caution is necessary with national security secrets, no?

BRADLEY P. MOSS, NATIONAL SECURITY LAWYER: Sure. It's always that double edged sword that you have here in the national security arena. You never want to be the person who declassified or reduced the classification level on something that allowed it to leak out, that caused damage to national security. Makes total sense. The problem is, because there are so many individuals who hold clearances, because there is so much that is default classified, it becomes a monstrosity of paperwork to manage. It doesn't mean that there shouldn't be classified information. Of course, there should be. It doesn't mean that properly classified information shouldn't be properly stored and managed. Of course, it should be.

But this fact, the fact that not only that the Trump team had their issues and we know how chaotic that West Wing was, but that even the Obama team and President Biden's team apparently had this issue and that there were errant documents stored in places where they should not be stored under any circumstance, speaks to a larger problem about how we manage classified information, how we document and store it and how much, to what extent we are over classifying things. And that speaks, as far as I'm concerned, it doesn't change whether or not things were done wrong here. I don't think President Biden should have ever had those documents where he did. But it speaks to a larger question we need to address of do we need to find a way to reduce this mountain of paperwork that we're trying to oversee? SANCHEZ: You also point out in the piece the millions of people

involved in this system. I'm wondering if you think there's a way to perhaps thin that or get a better understanding of who's overseeing where these papers wind up.

MOSS: Sure. There's well over, I believe, 4 million people who currently hold security clearances. To be fair, most a huge number, you know, a majority of that no doubt require security clearances at various different levels. You have defense contractors, you have military personnel, you have government employees. But there is an excess of individuals who are being granted clearances for no other reason than and because of where the work, what particular facility or act and its causing problems of ensuring that access is, you know, inadvertently given to them. They're not being given copies of records to which they truly don't need in order to perform the duties they're being paid to do for the federal government and on behalf of the American people.


There have been discussions, there have been, you know, requests for reform for years, about how we decide who truly needs a security clearance. And who does not we want to make sure national security is protected without causing this excess of bureaucracy. There needs to be a real discussion on that. And if this is something that, you know, of Congress is going to truly look into these problems, and I know there's going to be hearings to look into the mishandling by apparently is handled by President Biden, there should be a real discussion about how we classify and who truly does and does not need a security clearance.

SANCHEZ: So, if you were advising members of Congress on what needs to be reformed to make the system more secure, what specific measures would you suggest?

MOSS: So, we need to get a full, you know, a lengthy set of congressional hearings, there needs to be true discussions with the Office of Personnel Management with the major intelligence agencies. And some of this would have to be done in closed session, given the national security purposes, but that's why Congress has that power to do so. But they need to have a real discussion about whether they need to be legislative reforms, bureaucratic incentives, to truly conclude a truly thin out who requires those clearances, what it wire, you know, how are these criteria being established and implemented in terms of deciding who needs access to classified information in order to do their work, and how improvements can be made, how we can decide if people are maintaining clearances for no other reason, then they always had one.

And so, it was decided they should continue to require it as part of their work. If they need it, that's fine. If they don't longer need the clearance, if they no longer need access to do their job, we need to call them out of that bureaucracy not in terms of their job, but in terms of their access to minimize the problem.

SANCHEZ: Yes, I guess one of the silver linings of these issues with classified documents could be that we see that kind of reforming and perhaps more accountability for keeping track of so many clearances and so many records.

Bradley P. Moss that's all the time we got thanks so much.

MOSS: Thank you. Good morning.

WALKER: Fascinating conversation there.

All right still ahead, outrage in the UK after Iran executes a British-Iranian national just days after his death sentence was announced. More on the response from British officials.



AMARA WALKER, CNN ANCHOR: Powerful explosions rattling Kyiv early this morning and what the city's mayor called an attack on the capital. Officials say Russian missiles targeted power facilities on the east bank part of the city's critical infrastructure.

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Missile fragments were found outside the museum in Kyiv. Fortunately, though, there are no reports of any casualties.

Our correspondent CNN's Scott McLean is live in Kyiv this morning. Scott, you've moved to a shelter what's going on there?

SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, so essentially what happened this morning, Boris is that there were three explosions early on, that woke up the city run nine o'clock or after nine o'clock local time. And then only after then did the actual air raid alert, sirens go off for about an hour or two. Now they have gone off again about 45 minutes ago or so. And obviously the city is on high alert right now. And there are reports from local officials that there is incoming missiles into the country. And so, people have been told to take shelter. And so that's what we're doing as well. We're underground in a metro station unfortunate. I don't have permission to flip the camera around and show you the people who are coming in here. But I can tell you that there are a lot of people taking shelter underground and for very good reason.

We were also earlier today at a demonstration for mothers and family members of soldiers who are missing or they are have been captured in battle, POWs. And they were trying to draw attention to the fact that their sons, their brothers, their fathers have not been their release has not been negotiated. And they would like the government to spend more time trying to get prisoner swaps. And I met one woman in particular, whose son was missing. She's not sure if he's dead or if he's alive, but she says that she has a mother's instinct that he's alive. Here's what she told us.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) TETYANA SHOKUR, SON IS PRISONER OF WAR (through translation): My life is hell after my son went missing. My soul is broken to pieces from all this uncertainty. We don't want this war. We want our country to be free. Our sons went to defend our country.


MCLEAN: Yes, and I also spoke to another mother whose husband is also missing and she was with her young daughter and she says that her daughter is so young that she's actually gotten used to not having her dad around. She's sort of adapted already, which is pretty heartbreaking for any parent to hear, Boris, Amara.

SANCHEZ: Painful words from that person. Scott McLean, thank you so much.

Iran has executed dual British-Iranian citizen Alireza Akbari after the country charged him and convicted him of being a spy for MI6.

WALKER: Yes, Tehran hanged the 61-year-old after a long detainment. This is according to state media. Akbari was a former Defense official in Iran.

Let's go now to Nada Bashir, she's live in London for "CNN This Morning." Nada, UKs Prime Minister calling the execution quote, barbaric. What more can you tell us?

NADA BASHIR, CNN REPORTER: Yes, I mean, this has sent shockwaves through the UK. We have heard the appealed just in the last few days from UK officials as well as other international leaders calling for Akbari's planned execution to be halted. He was of course arrested back in 2019 on allegations of spying for the United Kingdom and today in that troubling announcement that the he had in fact been executed by the Iranian authorities. State media said that he had been executed in relation to providing important national information to MI6 Britain's intelligence service for a significant amount of money.


Of course, these are allegations that upbraids legal representatives have long denied. The British government, for its part says this has been politically motivated. And as he laid out there, we heard from Rishi Sunak speaking earlier this morning, he actually said in a tweet that this was a callous and cowardly act carried out by a barbaric regime with no respect for the human rights of their own people. My thoughts are with Alireza's friends and family. And of course, there have been questions around how the British government will hold the Iranian regime to account. We have just learned in the last few moments from Britain's Foreign Secretary James Cleverly that the UK has now sanctioned Iran's Prosecutor General who they say is at the heart of Iran's use of the death penalty. And this is a clear attempt to hold the Iranian regime to account. But of course, this comes amid a wave of other executions and a brutal and deadly crackdown on peaceful protesters in Iran.

So, there are questions around whether or not we will continue to see the death penalty in Iran. Boris, Amara.

SANCHEZ: Nada Bashir, thank you so much for that report.

Shoppers left with sticker shock at the grocery store, egg prices spiking by nearly 60% over the last year. Why the cost has soared so quickly? Coming up.



WALKER: There are new details in the case of a Virginia teacher shot in her own classroom, allegedly by a six-year-old student.

SANCHEZ: Yes. The school district, acknowledging at least one official was warned the child might have a gun.

CNN's Brian Todd has more.


BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Disturbing new information tonight indicating there may have been a window of time to prevent first grade teacher Abby Zwerner from being shot by her six-year-old student. A spokesperson for the Newport News, Virginia School District tells CNN that the school superintendent, George Parker, said in a virtual town hall meeting with families that officials at Richneck Elementary School received a tip in the hours just before the shooting occurred that the six-year-old may have had a weapon. Parker didn't indicate who gave the tip, but according to CNN affiliate WTKR, Parker said after receiving the tip, school officials searched the boy's backpack and found nothing.

In recent days, Newport News Police Chief Steve Drew told CNN the gun had been concealed by the child at some point.

STEVE DREW, CHIEF, NEWPORT NEWS POLICE: He put it in his backpack and was driven to school by his mother later that morning. And then at some point, it came out of his backpack and was concealed on him.

TODD (voice-over): The Newport News police tell CNN they were notified of the tip that the boy may have had a weapon in those hours before the shooting. We reached out to the school district to ask why the police weren't contacted. The district had no comment. CNN analyst John Miller says in addition to contacting the police, there are other steps school officials could have taken after getting that initial warning.

JOHN MILLER, CNN CHIEF LAW ENFORCEMENT AND INTELLIGENCE ANALYST: After they searched his backpack with negative results, did they then conduct a pat down of the child to determine if the gun was on his person. Let's contact the parent. Let's ask some basic questions. Is there a gun in the house? If there is a gun in the house, is it something that he could have had access to?

TODD (voice-over): We've reached out to the Newport News School District with all those questions. They declined to comment, citing the ongoing investigation. School officials now say they'll institute a safety measure that the superintendent had earlier said he hated to even think about.

LISA SURLES-LAW, CHAIR, NEWPORT NEWS PUBLIC SCHOOL BOARD: Metal detectors will be in place and used for all students, faculty, staff and visitors to Richneck upon school reopening.

TODD (voice-over): The teacher, Abby Zwerner, was struck in the hand by a single bullet police say, a bullet which went through her hand and struck her in the chest. One school official says her condition is improving every day.


TODD (voice-over): Lowanda Sample Rusk, who was at Richneck Elementary School picking up her grandsons when the shooting occurred and administered first aid to Zwerner, remains traumatized.

SAMPLE-RUSK: When I go back and I think about it brings me to tears because it could have been so much worse.

TODD (on-camera): Regarding the metal detectors, the school board chairwoman says 90 metal detectors will be placed in schools across the entire Newport News school district. And some schools, she says, will have more than one detector.

Brian Todd, CNN, Washington.


WALKER: Just wrapping your head around little five-year-olds walking through metal detectors to get to school. It's hard to imagine.

The Treasury Department warned the U.S. will reach the debt ceiling in about five days on January 19th, and that extraordinary measures must be taken to avert defaulting. And the White House says it's up to Congress to take action. House Republicans say they are preparing contingency plans in case the nation hits its debt limit.

SANCHEZ: Meantime, the soaring price of eggs is giving shoppers sticker shock at the grocery store. The price jumping 60% since last year.

CNN's Vanessa Yurkevich has more on why the cost of eggs is exploding.


VANESSA YURKEVICH, CNN BUSINESS & POLITICS CORRESPONDENT (on-camera): Boris and Amara, egg prices also jumping 11% in just one month. That is a huge increase. So, a year ago, prices were about a $1.79 for a dozen eggs. Today, they are about $4.25 on average. And we're seeing prices at almost $10 for a dozen eggs in Hawaii, $11.49 here in New York City.


Listen to the supervisor of a Morton Williams grocery store here in New York City who says prices are up 70% in his stores in the last year about why eggs are so pricey.

ANGELO PULEO, DELI SUPERVISOR, MORTON WILLIAMS: The perfect storm of things to happen, all at one time from the flu to the increases inflation, all combined together with the shortage, it is a perfect storm.

YURKEVICH (on-camera): And that avian flu is the big factor here. Nearly 15 million birds died last year because of this highly contagious and deadly disease. That has lowered production, and with sustained demand, it creating supply issues, pushing these prices up. And in September, avian flu cases spiked, which would likely translate to the impact in prices that we're seeing today.

But while food at the grocery store remains stubbornly high, some good news, meat prices are falling. Beef and veal down 3.1%, bacon down 3.7%, and pork roast down 1.8%. So while eggs are pricier, you're getting of savings on your meat. Boris, Amara.


SANCHEZ: Vanessa Yurkevich, thank you so much.

Stay with "CNN This Morning." We're back in just minutes.



SANCHEZ: Germany's demanding that Russian authorities provide urgent medical assistance to the imprisoned Kremlin critic Alexey Navalny. They say that Navalny is in immediate need of medical help as numerous Russian doctors have pointed out. Navalny is the most prominent Russian opposition leader, and he's been in jail for nearly two years. You'll recall, he was arrested on trumped up charges after an attempted poisoning in 2020.

WALKER: Navalny has accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of being behind the attack, which, of course, the Kremlin denies.

CNN's Anderson Cooper spoke with Navalny's daughter for an update on his health.


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN HOST (on-camera): Do right now what your father's condition is?

DASHA NAVALNAYA, DAUGHTER OF JAILED PUTIN CRITIC ALEXEY NAVALNY: First of all, I want to say thank you so much, Anderson, for having me. It's a huge honor. Thank you so much for lighting the light on the situation that's happening. My -- I know what's happening. And my biggest concern with my dad's situation is his physical health. Right now, we all know that Russian prisons aren't well equipped for the cold winters. And of course, my father got the flu. His condition is not good, I'll be honest. He has a cough and a fever and he's expectedly very exhausted. They purposefully placed a mentally unstable person in a cell next to him who screams at night. So, my father isn't even able to get any sleep at night. The prison officials are refusing to treat him when my father requested to be placed in prison hospital, they said it was full of people who might get him infected. However, agreed to take his cell roommates into the prison hospital, essentially spreading the virus to my dad.

Even before the flu, he had some severe back problems and he requested to have a doctor visit many times for a long time. And eventually the doctor visited him once, prescribed him injections of an unknown name, and didn't give a diagnosis. We're trying to get him all the help that we can get. And we actually have got a lot of Russian doctors assigned my mother's plea and supported the plea for medical care for my dad. But, yes, my primary concern at the moment.

COOPER (on-camera): Obviously, I know in the past your father has been able to communicate limitedly via letters or through his attorneys. Has that become more difficult? When were you actually last able to communicate with him?

NAVALNAYA: So, the last time I saw him in person was a year and a half ago for my birthday, September 2021. We talked over the small phone that's in prisons and did the whole movie scene where we leaned our palms against the mirror, against the glass that separated us and it looked like were holding hands. It was very sweet, but of course not the same as being really in person. In December, I sent him a letter just talking about my fall quarter and what courses I'm taking in this quarter winter. I actually just got a reply a couple of days ago. Yes, it's nothing super interesting.

COOPER (on-camera): What do you think about -- I mean, your father went back to Russia knowing after he was poisoned and recovered, he went back to Russia flying in, knowing what he was going back to. As his daughter, I mean, it's incredibly heroic. It's extraordinary. As his daughter is -- what is that like, to know that your father, you know, put his life -- has repeatedly putting his life on the line for something larger than him or the family, you know, for so many other people?

NAVALNAYA: Right. Well, I'm not going to say that it hasn't been difficult. I really miss him. I've always been a father's daughter. You know, before this, he would get arrested, but no longer for a couple of days or a week. And this is definitely especially when he was first arrested for the first year, it was definitely hard for me to understand that I can just text or call my dad whenever I wanted to.


But, you know, it's hard, but someone has to do the work that he does. And I'm proud of him for doing it, and it makes supporting him that much easier.

COOPER (on-camera): Dasha, thank you so much. I wish you the best.

NAVALNAYA: Thank you.


SANCHEZ: The Sundance Award winning film "NAVALNY," airs tonight at 9:00 p.m. Eastern right here on CNN.

Hey, Amara, earlier you said that you're neither smart nor disciplined. Just for the record, I want to say nobody believes you. I certainly disagree with that, especially if you do wind up winning the lottery.

WALKER: That's so kind of you. You just boosted my spirits. Thank you for that, Boris.

"SMERCONISH" is up next.