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New False Claim by Santos; Crypto Mining Wreaks Havoc on Towns; New Study on Losing Weight. Aired 6:30-7a ET

Aired January 19, 2023 - 06:30   ET





JIMMY FALLON, HOST, "THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JIMMY FALLON": A new poll found that President Biden's approval rating has not been effected by the classified documents scandal. Today, Biden said, in that case, there's another 100 documents stashed in the pool house. Let's just get that out.

STEPHEN COLBERT, HOST, "THE LATE SHOW WITH STEPHEN COLBERT": Santos set up a Go Fund Me for the dog's surgery. But when it reached $3,000, he closed it and became increasingly difficult to contact. Santos refused to give him any of the donations saying he would take the money and use it for other dogs. Yes, other dogs, like Max and Skipper and Rover Devolder.

LESLIE JONES, HOST, "THE DAILY SHOW": You gonna mess with somebody's dog? Have you not heard of John Wick? Your ass is in trouble! Trouble!


DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Oh, boy. Well, we're going to speak with that veteran straight ahead about that dog issue. No laughing matter, by the way.

But this morning it appears George Santos has been caught in yet another lie. He has claimed, right, that his mother was in the south tower on 9/11. That has been reported for a while. Even, you know, it's on his campaign website.

Here's the problem. Immigration records apparently show that that is not actually the case. She wasn't even in the U.S. On a 2003 form seen by CNN, the mother indicated that she hadn't been to America since 1999. She also filed paperwork in Brazil in 2001, just months before 9/11, saying that her Green Card had been stolen.

It's in addition to, really, a long list of lies from the newly elected congressman.

So, let's discuss now. CNN political commentators Scott Jennings and Alyssa Farah Griffin. They are both here. I'm sure they don't want to get close to this issue with a ten - with a ten foot pole.



LEMON: No. No.

GRIFFIN: There - there's one universal -

LEMON: Good morning.

GRIFFIN: Good morning.

One universal rule of politics, you don't mess with veterans and dogs. Actually, just life. And he managed to do both of those things.

LEMON: OK. We want to talk about that, but let's talk about the mom issue. What do you make of these - because it shows that his mother was not, apparently, in the World Trade Center on September 11th. That's pretty serious. A serious time for our - serious incident for our country and the world. And then -

GRIFFIN: Well, and, I think, broadly it speaks to his character. I mean if you're lying about, you know, your mom's life, he's also apparently lied about the time that she's died through various tweets that have been resurfaced. He's a dishonest person. I'd say he's a bit of a con artist. But - well, he's like the gift that keeps giving in terms of like, it's kind of funny sometimes. It's very serious.

From a national security perspective, this guy is ripe for adversaries to exploit. Like, Scott and I, when we were going into government, they - we go through the SF-86 (ph) process. They look into who you lived with. They talk to old roommates, all your old employers, to know that you're not somebody who could be blackmailed or subject to corruption. We don't do that with elected officials. It's a little bit different. The primary basically does that.

And this is a person who is ripe to be a target for blackmail and exploitation. And now he's serving in Congress. And that's dangerous.


GRIFFIN: This is a person totally unequipped to be there.

COLLINS: And it's - the thing is, its - so now he's lied about 9/11. He lied about the Holocaust. He lied about the Pulse nightclub shooting.

LEMON: Jew-ish.

COLLINS: He has lied about these really serious things.

And I think the thing is, this is a consistent thing that he has said about his mother and 9/11. And he, as he's been caught in some of these lies, has removed some of them from his campaign website. But as of last night, this one about 9/11 was still on there.

JENNINGS: You ever meet people who like lie so much and so long about so many - they - they -- they begin to not be able to tell the difference from which --

LEMON: Yes, that's -- this guy I know named Scott Jennings. Sorry. Trump.


LEMON: Go on.

JENNINGS: But, you know what I mean -


JENNINGS: Like, you just get the impression that - that he has just lived his entire life as someone who makes things up to get through the next few moments. And - and if people seem to respond to it, then he uses it. And if they don't, he picks another thing. And so it's - it's quite troubling.

I mean I - I still think to get rid of him out of the - by the way, if you talk to House Republicans, nobody wants to associate with this guy. They treat him like a pariah. I think to get rid of him it would be good -

COLLINS: Do they, though?

JENNINGS: Oh, yes.

LEMON: If - I - (INAUDIBLE) anyway.

COLLINS: He just got -- he was just put on a committee. Two committees.


JENNINGS: Yes, the two -- the two worst committees that nobody wants to be on. They stuck them in the dark corner.


LEMON: I don't know - I don't if he believes that.

COLLINS: Sure, but -

LEMON: I have sources that don't think that he believes that's true.

JENNINGS: How would he know? I mean how would he know what's a terrible committee? I mean they stuck him off in the corner. A committee, the Ethics Committee, these prosecutors, these people that are looking into him, to me, I think the minute somebody comes back and says, yes, we've sort of validated all these accusations and we can now document without question either he has campaign finance problems or, you know, whatever it happens to be, that will be the trigger for them.

LEMON: But won't it go from - excuse me - won't it go from a four person majority to a three person majority, which is something that Kevin McCarthy doesn't need. Probably why they're sticking with him right now. The main reason that they're sticking with him right now.

I just want ask, you've worked in government too.


LEMON: But you are -- you have been a strategist, right?

JENNINGS: Correct.

LEMON: And an adviser. What would your advice be to Kevin McCarthy right now and to Republicans in Washington as it relates to George Santos?

JENNINGS: Two - two-part plan. One, essentially put him in time out, which I think they've - they've basically done. And, two, they really do need to support the Ethics Committee moving as quickly as possible to document this person's problems so that they can then use that as the underpinning to toss him out.

LEMON: You would get - you would say get rid of him?

JENNINGS: Absolutely. I mean if the Ethics Committee says you've lied, and, by the way, you may have broken all these different laws on your campaign finance paperwork, absolutely. Toss him.

LEMON: Even at this point?



GRIFFIN: Well, and going a step further, too, if I were Kevin McCarthy, I would be actively recruiting in that district for who another credible Republican is that could run if this is something that comes to a resignation and goes to a special election. It's obviously a D plus one district. Biden carried it. So, he's worried about what's going to - what would be a difficult uphill battle.

But this guy won it. It's not that a Republican can't win it. Be looking for who that, you know, moderate business man or woman is and try to get them ready to go if that comes to it.

JENNINGS: Yes, if they don't move on him, I mean, look, they're going to toss him out in the primary next year anyway, those voters are. I mean this guy's not going to be in Congress, you know -- at a maximum he's going to be in Congress for two years.

COLLINS: That's two years that his constituents have this guy representing them.


COLLINS: Alyssa, I want to ask you about something else, though, because we also were looking at what the former president was arguing yesterday. And I covered his classified documents thing very closely, but it struck out to me what he is now talking about, which are the empty folders that the FBI found when they searched Mar-a-Lago. I think it was close to 50 of them, 48 of them. And now he's zeroing in on this saying that they were just a cool keepsake he kept from Oval Office meetings where they'd come in with classified documents in the folds. He would keep just the folder and they would take the documents. Is that ever something you saw happen when you were in the White House?

GRIFFIN: No. And it would be kind of a bizarre thing to do. The whole purpose of the cover sheet is that it covers the classified information. So, a CIA briefer, when they take it back, would in all likelihood keep that document. I would assume that if you have a cover sheet that that meant that you had classified information under it. That seems like a weird line of (INAUDIBLE).

COLLINS: Typically in a briefing, if someone gave the president a classified document with a folder, they would take back both, including the folder?

GRIFFIN: Yes. Yes. That's what's kind of odd about both the Biden and the Trump cases is, you really do have somebody come and present it to you, brief it, talk you through it, and then take it back. For the president to just even be kind of holding and collecting in a drawer classified documents isn't even really standard. And if you keep it in your office, it should be in a lock box. The Oval Office is a SCIF, but because you do have foot traffic in and out of it, you - you still would have to have it in a lock box. And it doesn't really make sense to me why you would - why he's leaning into the cover sheets.

JENNINGS: The president, also, I think, said in his statement that if -- he has the folders, but if there were any documents they were probably planted there by the -

COLLINS: By the gestapo, which is now his new name for the FBI.

JENNINGS: Which is - which is sort of what the fever swaps of the left are saying about the Biden documents. Well, you know, the Republicans must have put them in his garage. And so I found that to be the most curious part of this statement is that you have accusations of planting. They did -- none of these things were planted. Let's just - I mean, come on.

COLLINS: But, I mean, what do you make of a former Republican president outwardly referring to the FBI as the gestapo. Not saying they're gestapo like, not saying some of them are, he is outwardly calling them the gestapo.

JENNINGS: Terrible. Awful.

LEMON: Going to be the first - your first question at the beginning of this, you ever heard - met someone or heard someone who can't believe - I mean, look, he learned from the best, right? This guy learned from - this is "The New York Post" saying, this is sort of my gauge, right, that "The New York Post" now does not like Trump, right? And they don't apparently like Santos because they're saying Santos is too big a liar even for politics.



LEMON: Not - not -- they didn't even bring up the, what is it, Qatara (ph) - Qatara (INAUDIBLE).

GRIFFIN: Yes, we now know that he performed in drag in Brazil, which, more power to him.

LEMON: Allegedly.

GRIFFIN: Allegedly. If he wants to. But that will be interesting to see how that fits into his new friends in the Freedom Caucus who have kind of declared a war on drag.


GRIFFIN: And just the one thing I would say there is I think Trump lowered the standard so much for character and integrity in politics, and George Santos is a direct result of that.

LEMON: Good to see you. Early for you. Are you awake?

JENNINGS: Yes. Am I not performing up to your high standards here?

LEMON: No. Do you miss fighting with me at night?

JENNINGS: Yes, I was just telling my wife the other day that I really miss 11:30 p.m., my boxing matches with you.

LEMON: Can I let you in on a little secret? I don't miss it.

By the way, I have a story for Scott.

JENNINGS: Yes, I don't -- I don't believe that, actually.


LEMON: I have a story for you coming up. We're going to talk about intermittent fasting, which you got me on intermittent fasting. I lost 30 pounds because - in large part because of you.


GRIFFIN: It works. It works.

LEMON: In small part - yes, well, I don't know. They think. Maybe. We'll let you know.

COLLINS: All right, Alyssa, Scott --

LEMON: They're telling us we've got to go.

JENNINGS: Thank you.

LEMON: Kaitlan's moving us along.

COLLINS: Thank you both so much.

LEMON: Thank you, guys.

COLLINS: All right, a different kind of mining is bringing a different kind of pollution to one of the most peaceful spots in North Carolina. Bill Weir spoke to homeowners who are now haunted by the hum of these large fans.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When it's at about 75, 80 decibels, id' say a jet engine. A jet engine that never leaves.



LEMON: Look, you may be involved in this because there's more than 20 million people from the Midwest to the Great Lakes under winter storm threats. Some areas expecting to see up to 17 inches of snow today. You're looking live at Denver, which recorded the largest snowfall in January in 30 years. More than 9 inches as of Wednesday evening. It is the eighth largest two-day snowfall for this month. I'll say that again, the eighth largest two-day snowfall for this month. I want you to take a look at some of the snowfall totals. More than 23 inches in Merna, Nebraska, more than 17 inches in Litchfield, Nebraska, 11 inches in Aurora, Arizona. This storm is expected to move east today.

COLLINS: All right, it's a different type of pollution disrupting life for people who are living in an Appalachian town in North Carolina. Crypto mining is to blame for noise pollution. Banks of servers running all day, every day, consuming huge amounts of electricity from coal and natural gas making a lot of noise.


CNN's Bill Weir joins us now.

I guess the question that people have is, just how loud is this? Because I don't think a lot of people aren't familiar with these kinds of - this kind of crypto mining.

BILL WEIR, CNN CHIEF CLIMATE CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's -- the volume goes from maybe 55 to 80 decibels in the guy's yard next door to the mine. But it's not the volume, it's the constant. This thing turned on in September '21 and it's not shut off, which is -

COLLINS: Not at night. Not on weekends. Nothing. WEIR: Never ever turning off, because that's what the game of crypto is. A lot of people didn't understand it.

These are retirees, long-time landowners there. And they'd heard about crypto and thought, ah, maybe it's smoke and mirrors. Maybe some invested. But then they heard the sound of crypto and it changes everything in this county.

Take a look.


WEIR (voice over): This is the sound of Green Mountain Farm. Certified by Quiet Parks International as one of the most peaceful spots in North Carolina. Thanks to their rare local enforcement of laws against noise pollution.

Meanwhile, about 90 minutes away, beautiful Cherokee County sounds like this. It is stack upon stack of computer servers, and the fans needed to cool them. This is what's known as a crypto mine. And it makes the sound of people in San Francisco trying to make virtual money.

WEIR (on camera): How do you describe that noise?

MIKE LUGIEWICZ, MURPHY RESIDENT: We're probably sitting at probably 65 decibels right now. When it's at about 75, 80 decibels, I'd say a jet engine. A jet engine that never leaves.

WEIR (voice over): Sixteen months after the mine fired up without warning, Mike Lugiewicz put his house up for sale in frustration.

TOM LASH (ph), MURPHY RESIDENT: There would be turkeys out in the field and deer by the hundreds.

WEIR (on camera): Yes.

LASH: You don't have that anymore.

WEIR (voice over): While Tom Lash (ph) misses the wildlife.

PHYLLIS CANTRELL, MURPHY RESIDENT: You don't sleep at night.

WEIR: Phyllis Cantrell says she feels trapped.

CANTRELL: You can actually lay your head on the pillow and hear it hum up through the walls.

WEIR (on camera): No way.

Have you thought about moving?

CANTRELL: We're 73 years old. Where are we going to go?

WEIR: Imagine a game where the dice have a billion sides and the first person to roll a ten wins. That is essentially crypto mining. And to play that games these days, you need computers, thousands of computers, running 24/7, 365.

And after China outlawed crypto currency and crypto mining, more and more mines like this began popped up in Appalachia. Places where the power is cheap and the regulations are either nonexistent or unenforced.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's all pray.

WEIR (voice over): But in this deep red Republican pocket --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They've got noise 24/7. Noise and sound (INAUDIBLE) do nothing to help these people. What are you guys going to do to help?

WEIR: The mine has upended local politics.

JUDY STINES, MURPHY RESIDENT: I like to be behind the scenes, and I - I like to stir the pot. And I knew that we -- we needed to win an election.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Forget the noise --

WEIR: Outrage over the mine helped flip the balance of power in November's county election.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Congratulations.

WEIR: With the new board of commissioners now asking for federal help in ending American crypto mining.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To introduce and champion legislation through the U.S. Congress to ban, (INAUDIBLE) or regulate crypto mining operations in the United States of America. (INAUDIBLE).

WEIR: When asked over LinkedIn for reaction, Chandler Song, one of the mine's co-owners wrote, oh, boy, they wanted us so bad a year ago.

As for the proposed ban, it is unconstitutional to say the least.

Song and his crypto mining co-founder made Forbes 30 under 30 list a few years ago and recently claimed quarterly revenues of more than $20 million. But when asked follow-up questions, Song went silent.

His mine in Murphy has not, so far. But the county attorney is looking for a legal way to shut it down. A cautionary reminder that the next time you hear a place as peaceful as Green Mountain Farm --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You're playing roulette with their lives.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Come on. WEIR: Chances are someone got loud and fought for it.


WEIR: There was a brutal winter storm across the south right on Christmas Eve. First rolling blackouts in Tennessee Valley Authority history. And when they started getting plunged into darkness and cold, Kaitlan, the first thing they did was go down and check the mine. It was still running. So that's another dose of bad blood in this fight.

Other counties have pushed back against this. And so if crypto is going to grow the way it has, it might run into resistance in places just like Murphy, North Carolina.


COLLINS: It sounds like you're on a tarmac almost.

WEIR: It does.

COLLINS: He was saying it's a jet engine that never leaves. It really does sound like you're out boarding a plane or something.

WEIR: Right. And he's like, we've got a racetrack right over there. We hear them racing on Friday nights. It's awesome. But at least they stop and we can go to bed.

COLLINS: All right, Bill Weir, that's a fascinating piece. Thank you so much.

WEIR: Thank you.

LEMON: It is fascinating. Thank you both very much. Appreciate it.

Which is a better way to lose weight, intermittent fasting or calorie cutting? Dr. Tara Narula has the stats. She's next.


COLLINS: All right, if one of your New Year's resolutions was to lose weight, this might be of interest to you. A new study by the American Heart Association says a popular diet strategy of limiting food intake to a specific time window, which you may have heard your friends talk about this, it's called intermittent fasting, may not be an effective weight loss strategy.

Joining us now to talk about this is our CNN medical correspondent and cardiologist, Dr. Tara Narula.

OK, so I know a lot of people that do this. One of them may or may not be at this table. So, what are the --


COLLINS: What are the results of this study? NARULA: So this is an interesting study. And so many people are fascinated by intermittent fasting. And really what they did is they took 547 individuals from three different health systems, and they gave them a mobile app and they said, we want you to use this to tell us when you wake up, when you sleep, when you eat and what the size of your meals are. So, they were able to tell the time interval between their first meal of the day, their last meal, when they woke up to their first meal and then when they took their last meal and when they went to bed.


And from all of that information, they were able to find that it was the size and frequency of eating meals that was associated with a small increase in weight gain, but the time interval between your first and last meals did not have any impact on weight gain or loss. So, essentially, from this study you would say that changing the timing of when you're eating or what we talk about as intermittent fasting had no impact on helping people lose weight.

They also, interestingly, did find, and we've talked about the value of breakfast, you and I eat breakfast very early, that people who started their eating earlier in the morning and ate, you know, pretty quickly from when they woke up and then ate their last meal at a pretty -- maybe four or five hours from the time they went to bed, those people tended to not fluctuate in weight as much.

So, Don, are you going to change anything?

LEMON: No, I'm not going to - look, I'm not going to -- never doubt science, right, or medicine.

NARULA: Right.

LEMON: But I know it works for me.


LEMON: And I know it has worked for me. I know it has worked for a lot of people. Look, it may not be -- maybe the intermittent fasting. I think what it does is, it causes your stomach to shrink. You get used to not eating. And in the time that is allotted for you to eat, like I do 16/8.


LEMON: In that eight hours, I often find myself not being able to eat all of the calories that's allotted.

NARULA: Right.

LEMON: And so, therefore, I will lose weight. So, I think it teaches you discipline and I do think it sort of helps in restricting calories. So, it may not work in the way that people think it works, it's just intermittent fasting, but I think it's also helping to restrict the calories and it gives you a little bit more discipline. NARULA: Yes, there's been a lot of research into this. And some of it

says, yes, it works, some says it doesn't - some say it doesn't. A lot of the research has been done in animals and it's been sort of short term. So the question is, is this something sustainable over the long term.

But, there are a couple different types of intermittent fasting programs. You do the 16/8, with that daily intermittent fasting, which is probably the most common. You restrict eating from say maybe 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. and then you have that 12, 18 hour period where you're not eating at all. Some people do alternate days. So they fast one day, eat the next day. And some do like a 5/2, where they eat five days and then not two.

And there's some data suggests this helps the cells regenerate. It helps you go into a state of ketosis where you break down fat. So, there definitely may be something to it for sure.

COLLINS: I just want people to know you do eat sometimes.

LEMON: I do.

COLLINS: Lie McDonald's when you do eat. So, I don't want people to be worried about you.

Doctor, thank you for sharing that with us.

NARULA: Thank you.

COLLINS: All right, up next, we have new CNN reporting on President Biden's re-election run and what that looks like.

LEMON: And moments from now we're going to be joined by the Navy veteran who says that Congressman George Santos took thousands of dollars that was supposed to help his dying dog. You don't want to miss that.