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Early Start with John Berman and Zoraida Sambolin

Pope Benedict XVI Lying In State For Final Day Ahead Of Funeral; Uncle: Damar Hamlin Had To Be Resuscitated Twice; DeSantis Touts Florida As "Free State" In Second Inaugural Address. Aired 5:30- 6a ET

Aired January 04, 2023 - 05:30   ET




This is the first time in hundreds of years that a retired -- a retired pope has died. How will this service be handled? This could be different from a sitting pope?

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It could be a little bit different, Christine. And you're right, it's about 600 years since a pope has been laid to rest who had already stepped down from being pope. In this case, about 10 years.

Essentially, what the Vatican is saying is that the ceremony is going to be exactly as though Pope Benedict was still in office. But there might be some differences consider -- especially in language, considering that he wasn't actually in the office anymore -- that he wasn't the actual pope anymore.

The big difference, of course, is going to be is that the sitting pope, Pope Francis, is going to be presiding over all the things that are going to be going on. That, of course, in itself, is something that's extremely remarkable. The first time that has happened in the modern era.

So, essentially, what's going to happen is right now, the pope's body is still lying in state. You can see behind me a lot of people still going to pay their final respects.

Later today, the coffin is going to be sealed. That also has a special procedure. Pope Francis is going to oversee that as well.

And then tomorrow, as you mentioned, is going to be the big day when that funeral is going to take place. A lot of heads of state and a lot of heads of government are going to come here to Rome. That whole ceremony is also going to be overseen by Pope Francis as well. Of course, that, in itself, is a big deal.

And then, Pope Benedict is going to be placed into the papal tombs underneath the Vatican. They are, by the way, taking the place that beforehand, John Paul II had -- who, of course, now is inside the Vatican -- inside St. Peter's Basilica -- because he was declared a saint a couple of years ago, Christine. ROMANS: OK, interesting. All right. Thanks so much, Fred Pleitgen. We know you'll cover it for us today. Thank you.

Quick hits around the globe right now.

The European Union moves to require COVID testing for all travelers from China prior to departure as cases there surge. The plan is still being finalized.

Canada added more than 430,000 permanent residents last year. The country has a goal to ease its labor shortages. This is the biggest annual increase in Canadian history.

President Biden will host Japan's prime minister at the White House on January 13. Their talks will focus on North Korea, Taiwan, Russia's war on Ukraine, the economy, and climate change.

Brazil's soccer legend Pele has been laid to rest here at the world's tallest vertical cemetery in his hometown of Santos, overlooking the soccer field that made him famous.

The 3-time World Cup champion died last Thursday at the age of 82. More than 230,000 people paid tribute to their hero before the funeral.

Reporter Stefano Pozzebon has more.


STEFANO POZZEBON, REPORTER: For a man who was compared to God himself while still alive, a single day of mourning would have never been enough. Pele's final farewell took two days and saw more than 200,000 pay their respects.

In the closing hours of the public wake, even the president of Brazil, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, came to console a distraught widow.

Soon later, Pele's casket was carried in a funeral cortege around the city of Santos. For those old enough to have seen him play, he had already reached immortality.

CARLOS GOMES, PELE SUPPORTER: (Speaking foreign language).

POZZEBON (voice-over): "Nothing you write will ever match the greatness of Pele, our king. This is the funeral of a man, but the king will always be here."

GOMES: (Speaking foreign language).

POZZEBON (voice-over): On the streets where his casket will later pass, the crowds address different gods. Some, the holy father, others Pele himself, but everybody felt the passing of history.

POZZEBON (on camera): The most emotional moment, however, was when Pele's casket, carried by a fire truck just behind my back, arrived in front of the house where his mother still lives to this day. You can see the family gathering together -- gathering on the rooftop of the house to say goodbye to a friend, to a brother, to a son, to a father.

POZZEBON (voice-over): Relatives and friends gathered on the terrace. Pele's own sister bidding him farewell.

After a final prayer, the greatest football player of all time was finally laid to rest in a private ceremony only for the family and far away from the cameras.

From now on, Pele will always be at a short distance from the football ground he graced with his magic. The banners with his name already taken from the stands. A king's memory forever in the heart of this city.

Stefano Pozzebon, CNN, Santos, Brazil.


ROMANS: Wow, what a legend.

All right. Coming up, more from Damar Hamlin's uncle and the emotional moments after his collapse on the field.


And Ron DeSantis sworn in as the Florida governor, but does he have eyes on a bigger job?


ROMANS: All right, the uncle of Bills player Damar Hamlin says his nephew had to be resuscitated twice after suffering cardiac arrest on the field.

Andy Scholes has more in this morning's Bleacher Report. Hey, Andy.


So, Damar Hamlin remains in critical condition at the UC Medical Center in Cincinnati.

And we learned more details about what happened Monday night from his uncle, Dorian Glenn. He says Hamlin was resuscitated once on the field and then again at the hospital. Glenn says his nephew is showing improvement. Hamlin still has a breathing tube and is laying on his stomach to help his lungs heal.

Now, Glenn gave CNN's Adrienne Broaddus this update on his nephew last night.


DORIAN GLENN, UNCLE OF DAMAR HAMLIN: He sustained some damage to his lungs and they're working to try to -- to try to remedy that. And they've got him on a ventilator to help with the breathing tube, just to take some of the strain off his lungs so they can heal and recuperate. So, yes, it's just -- it's just a sad situation all the way around.



SCHOLES: Now, the NFL, meanwhile, says the game between the Bills and Bengals will not be made up this week and no decision has been made about playing it at a later date. And that result is very important to the Bills. Had they beaten the Bengals and then beat the Patriots this Sunday, they would have secured the one seed in the AFC and a bye in the first round.

Hamlin's teammate, Dion Dawkins, told CNN's Wolf Blitzer in "THE SITUATION ROOM" last night that they're truly blessed they weren't forced to keep playing.


DION DAWKINS, OFFENSIVE LINEMAN; BUFFALO BILLS: In that moment, they treated us like people, and being treated like as a person that is cared for, it's a beautiful feeling. And I'm thankful that I was treated as a person and so was the rest of my teammates. Because at the end of the day, Wolf, we are people and we have feelings, we have emotions. We cry, we hurt. And we have families and they hurt and they cry.


SCHOLES: Yes. And Damar Hamlin's charity's GoFundMe page has now soared to nearly $6 million as fans continue to donate. And the NFL community also joining in. Patriots owner Robert Kraft donating $18,003. Quarterbacks Matthew Stafford, Russell Wilson, and Tom Brady also making big donations.

And Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, on "THE PAT MCAFEE SHOW" yesterday, said what happened to Hamlin -- it's a reminder to everyone what's really important.


AARON RODGERS, QUARTERBACK, GREEN BAY PACKERS: I think you just gloss it over like oh, on to the "SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL" play-in game for the playoffs. It's like let's just take a little timeout here. Let's remember what's really important. Let's -- hug your loved ones. Text the people you care about and tell them you love them.

Because this is a good -- a good moment to kind of pause, and contemplate, and reflect, and show some empathy and respect for not just Hamlin but for every player that laces them up.


SCHOLES: Now, the Buffalo Sabres, meanwhile, wearing t-shirts with Hamlin's number three before their game last night.

And something pretty amazing happened. One of their stars, Tage Thompson, scoring three goals, his third hat trick of the season, and the third goal was the game-winner. And, Christine, it came in the third minute of overtime.

The team tweeting after, "This one was for you, Damar."

ROMANS: Amazing.

SCHOLES: Pretty incredible how many times the number three showed up in that game.

ROMANS: Yes, it really is.

All right. Nice to see you. Thanks, Andy.

SCHOLES: All right.

ROMANS: All right. Here is today's fast-forward look ahead.

The House reconvenes at noon today and so does the battle for a new speaker. So far, Kevin McCarthy has failed on three ballots to get enough votes.

Russia's Vladimir Putin will talk to Turkey's President Erdogan today. A spokesman for Erdogan says his boss also plans to have a chat with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy today.

President Biden travels to Kentucky, touting an infrastructure project to replace a bridge that connects Kentucky and Ohio. He'll be joined by Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell.

Coming up on "CNN THIS MORNING," the FDA now says abortion pills can be offered at pharmacies. What that could mean for so many women in America.

And bodycam video of the Idaho college murders suspect stopped by police weeks before his arrest. Why they let him go twice.



ROMANS: All right. Florida's Ron DeSantis just began his second term as governor with a big inaugural speech about his plans for the state and speculation about the 2024 race for president has many people wondering if he was talking about more than just Florida.

CNN's Jeff Zeleny has more from Tallahassee.



JEFF ZELENY, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis raised his right hand and swore an oath to serve a second term in office --

DESANTIS: We will never surrender to the woke mob. Florida is where woke goes to die.

ZELENY (voice-over): -- even as the prospect of another office loomed large.

DESANTIS: Freedom lives here in our great Sunshine State of Florida.

ZELENY (voice-over): It was an inauguration address, not an announcement speech DeSantis delivered on the steps of the old capitol in Tallahassee, but his words could serve as a roadmap for what many Republicans believe is the best path to win back the White House in 2024.

DESANTIS: When the world lost its mind, when common sense suddenly became an uncommon virtue, Florida was a refuge of sanity -- a citadel of freedom for our fellow Americans.

ZELENY (voice-over): The 44-year-old governor stands as a beacon for the GOP after marching to reelection by nearly 20 points in a midterm election year punctuated by setbacks for his party. He cast Florida as a magnet for American families during the fight against COVID.

DESANTIS: Because they saw Florida as the land of liberty and the land of sanity.

ZELENY (voice-over): He called the state a promised land, not mentioning the migrant families he whisked from the border in one of the most controversial acts of his first term that sparked condemnation from President Biden and Democrats.

DESANTIS: They went from Texas to Florida, to Martha's Vineyard.

ZELENY (voice-over): For now, the immediate challenge comes from his cross-state rival, former President Donald Trump, whose support was key to DeSantis winning the GOP nomination for governor in 2018.

Even among DeSantis admirers we spoke to, loyalty to Trump was still clear.

ZELENY (on camera): What if he would run in 2024? Would that be too soon or do you trust his own judgment on that?

HUGO VARGAS, FLORIDA REPUBLICAN VOTER: I think that would be soon. I think -- I think it's still -- Trump's still the candidate for 2024. And I think DeSantis will be there in 2028, myself.


ZELENY (on camera): Do you think that Gov. DeSantis agrees with you, or what if he does run? Would you be disappointed or --

MILAGROS: I would not be disappointed because both of them would do great. But I'm still for Trump.


ZELENY (voice-over): But in his speech, DeSantis made no mention of Trump. As Republicans chart a new course, he said, the party should draw inspiration from past presidents, like Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan.

DESANTIS: It's the fire that burned at a cemetery in Gettysburg when the nation's first Republican president pledged to this nation a new birth of freedom. It is the fire that led a resolute president to stand in Berlin and declare tear down this wall.

ZELENY (voice-over): Jeff Zeleny, CNN, Tallahassee, Florida.


ROMANS: All right, big changes coming to your 401(k) and IRA, folks. Bottom line, you can save more and take it out later. Now, because of inflation, the contribution limit this year is now $22,500. And a retirement savings overhaul passed in Congress raises the required minimum distribution age to 73 this year, rising up to 75 in 2033.

Other changes coming. Most employers must not automatically enroll employees in 401(k) plans -- automatically do it. And automatically bump up contribution rates by one percent each year, up to at least 10 percent. That starts in 2025.

For lower- and moderate-earning employees, there are incentives to save more. If you make $71,000 or less, the federal government will give you $500 to save $1,000. That starts in 2027.

And critical help for student loan borrowers. Employers can now make contributions based on an employee's student loan payments. That kicks in starting in 2024. Critical for young people to get them to pay their rent -- you know, pay their student loan bills, and also invest in their retirement account.

And there are emergency withdrawals that will be easier. One penalty- free withdrawal for unexpected expenses from family or personal needs -- that's not allowed. Employees will have the ability to withdraw $1,000 a year as long as it's repaid within a year.

All right, chaos on Capitol Hill after House Republicans adjourn without a speaker. What happens in the hours ahead, next on "CNN THIS MORNING."

And next, the boss of Victoria's Secret quits after less than a year. What is going on?



ROMANS: All right, your Romans' Numeral this morning, $136,260. What is that? That's the rent payment Twitter missed last month on one of its San Francisco offices. Missing the rent.

Twitter, a company just bought for $44 billion by a man worth $137 billion, stiffened the landlord for 136 grand. That landlord is now suing. Looking at markets around the world, Asian markets mixed this morning. The Hang Seng up more than three percent -- a growing hope that Hong Kong's border could reopen with Mainland China as soon as Thursday.

On Wall Street, stock index futures, right now, up just a little tiny bit. But stocks fell to start the new year. Stubborn inflation, recession fears all still in play.

Stocks also falling after shares of Tesla tumbled more than 12 percent on a missed delivery deadline for the year. And a major sell-off by Apple after rumors of potential production cuts.

On inflation watch, gas prices rose three pennies overnight, now sitting at $3.26 gallon.

New data on job openings and the minutes from the Fed's December meeting come out later today.

All right, more trouble at Victoria's Secret. The brand has been in the middle of a host of controversies over the past several years. And then this -- its CEO abruptly steps down.

CNN's retail reporter Nathaniel Meyersohn is here. And I just looked at the stock. It's down 42 percent over the past year and now it's out of a CEO. What's happening?

NATHANIEL MEYERSOHN, CNN BUSINESS REPORTER: Right. So, CEO Amy Hauk is stepping down less than a year into the job. That's never a good sign at a -- at a company. Stock plummeted last evening on the news. Like you said, it's really dropped the last few years. And this is just the latest controversy for Victoria's Secret.

Founder Les Wexner -- a few years ago, his ties to Jeffrey Epstein were closely scrutinized. That dragged down the brand.

Its marketing, and advertising, and image with the celebrity angels and supermodels and fashion shows -- that's really not what younger consumers are looking for.

And then, it's faced tough competition from these growing online brands -- ThirdLove. These kind of niche bra startups.

So a lot of issues for the company and questions about its long-term future.

ROMANS: Yes, focusing on comfort and style, not just style, which is something that they've really had to work on.

OK, so Equinox. It's a high-end gym company. And I'm sort of flummoxed by its beginning of the year campaign where it says we don't want you people with your January New Year's resolutions. We don't do -- we don't speak January.

Why wouldn't you take people's money? I just don't understand.

MEYERSOHN: It's a good question. So, gym sign-ups are very common on January first -- part of the new year -- your New Year's resolution to get in shape and sign up for a gym. Gyms will often offer big discounts to entice new members at the beginning of the year.

You think of Planet Fitness. They even sponsor the Times Square New Year's Eve drop. You know, get people to think about signing up for the gym.

Equinox doesn't want any part of -- any part of that. It's running an anti-January first New Year's resolution campaign. It wouldn't even let people sign up for the gym on the new year.

ROMANS: (Laughing).

MEYERSOHN: It's a bit -- you know, it was criticized for being tone- deaf and a bit elitist. You know, making fun of people who are trying to get in shape for the -- for the new year and get healthy.

What do -- what do you think, Christine? Is that a smart marketing move or --

ROMANS: I think they're just trying to be provocative. And we're talking about Equinox and the new year at the same time, so maybe that's what they were after all along.

Quickly here -- look, we now know that people are ordering lunch, their groceries, all this stuff to pick up, but how many times have you tried to pick something up and it's not there? There's -- this is -- there numbers behind this. Tell me.

MEYERSOHN: Right. So you think of -- we know about porch pirates stealing packages, but now people are stealing pick-up orders when you -- when you order to go. We're ordering a lot from Chipotle, Panera, Starbucks to go.