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New Day Saturday

Biden Meets With World Class Leaders At G20 Summit; World Leaders Tackle Global Economy, Health In First G20 Session; Washington Post: During Capitol Riot, Trump Attorney Told Pence Team That Mike Pence's Refusal to Overturn Election Caused Attack on Capitol Hill; Facebook Changes its Company Name to Meta Amid Backlash; Atlanta Braves Moves a Step Closer to Clinching Title. Aired 6-7a ET

Aired October 30, 2021 - 06:00   ET




BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN ANCHOR: Buenos dias. We're grateful to have you this Saturday, October 30th. Welcome to your New Day. I'm Boris Sanchez.

AMARA WALKER, CNN ANCHOR: And I'm Amara Walker in for Christi Paul. Good morning. Buenos dias to you too, Boris. Good to be with you.

SANCHEZ: Good morning, Amara. Of course.

WALKER: Well, let's get right to it because we have new details this morning on what happened when a pro-Trump mob attacked the Capitol on January 6th and just how far the former president's legal team went in the effort to overturn his election laws. The Washington Post is now reporting that in the middle of the Capitol invasion as rioters were overrunning the building and chanting, "Hang Mike Pence," one of former President Trump's attorneys e-mails, a top aide for the then- Vice President blaming Pence for the violence because he refused to block the election certification.

SANCHEZ: When that aide for Mike Pence described the attack as a siege in an e-mail, Trump's Attorney John Eastman wrote back, quote, "The siege is because you and your boss did not do what was necessary to allow this to be aired in a public way so that the American people can see for themselves what happened." Eastman confirmed that content of the e-mails, but he's denying that he was blaming Pence for the violence.

He told the post that Trump's team was right to exhaust, quote, "every legal means to challenge the election results." Once again, it's worth pointing out there is not now nor has there ever been any credible proof of widespread election fraud or irregularities. Of course, we're going to continue to follow this story for you throughout the morning.

The other big story we're following is out in Rome. President Biden meeting with world leaders at the G20 summit.

WALKER: Yes, CNN Anchor Wolf Blitzer is in Rome, and he's joining us live this morning. And Wolf, good morning to you, obviously, a busy day ahead for the President, President Biden. We did see that family photo just take place, but a lot of pressing issues to discuss.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST: You're absolutely right. Good morning to you, Amara, good morning, Boris. We're watching all of this unfold, a history unfolding here in Rome right now. President Biden taking the world stage to address global economic and security issues, even as his domestic agenda hangs in the balance back in Washington.

The President arrived here just a little while ago at the G20 summit. He was hoping to come to Rome with a deal in place on his climate and social spending agenda. But Democrats have yet to sign off on the framework of his proposal. The stakes clearly are enormous right now.

The President himself has acknowledged that the credibility of the United States and the future of his presidency potentially are on the line. But the Biden administration is also downplaying any impact on the President's ability to rally world leaders. One senior administration official said, and I'm quoting now, "These world leaders really are sophisticated. They understand there's a complicated process in any democracy to do anything as ambitious, as we're pursuing in our domestic agenda."

Here at the summit, President Biden and other world leaders will focus on the COVID 19 pandemic, global supply chain problems, a global minimum tax rate, high energy prices, and combating the climate crisis among other major issues.

Our chief White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins is here with us in Rome right now. We saw the photo opportunity, Kaitlan, just a little while ago, all the world leaders gathering, some world leaders, obviously, absent.

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Some world leaders are absent, including the Chinese President Xi Jinping and the Russian President Vladimir Putin. The White House believes that is largely because of the reason these leaders have not met in two years, which is COVID-19 in the pandemic. And so, you saw all the world leaders taking that family photo. They were also joined on stage a few moments later by some medical doctors and first responders who, of course, that helps carry the world through the pandemic.

And I do think it speaks to the overarching theme here where we're talking about what is going on, how many of these issues these world leaders have to tackle. But, of course, the pandemic is number one for all of them. Because it's not just vaccine sharing, though, that is incredibly important, because a lot of critics have said wealthy nations, including the United States have not done enough to vaccine -- to share vaccines with these countries that do not have the framework to create their own or to distribute their own.

And so, I think that is going to be a big question coming out of this is what did those commitments look like? And then, of course, the climate crisis is another one that is top of mind for them. And as you noted earlier, a lot of these world leaders will leave this summit, go to the second international summit that is happening here this week. And that is, of course, based completely around the climate.

And what are going to be the tangible steps that they take there? Because I think often you see these world leaders talk about vaccine sharing, talk about the climate. The question is, do people think they're actually doing enough given the status that they all have.


BLITZER: Yes, we'll be going to Scotland for that climate summit as well.

Jim Sciutto is watching all of this unfold. As we see that they're not behind closed door, they had the photo opportunity, they all gathered, they smile, they shook hands. But there are a lot of critically important issues they need to resolve.

JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: I think it's safe to say that was a happier family photo than the previous in- person G22 years ago, when you had genuine, open, public tension between the U.S. president, and even some of America's closest allies. Clearly better rapport between Biden and them, but genuine questions about the U.S. ability to lead on many of these issues, and also G20 to cooperate, to make substantive steps.

To be fair, a 15 percent minimum corporate tax globally, that's a big step. That's no small thing. And we'll have enormous effects on the economies of many countries and their ability to raise tax revenue. On the more intractable issues, an open question is to how far they're going to move the ball forward.

Will there be a genuine commitment here that you believe on these countries reducing their emissions before they go to Scotland? Open question. They're very concerned about energy supply, right, and we're seeing rising oil prices and that squeezes everybody's bottom line. Can they move OPEC on that? OPEC has its own interest as the oil price rises.

And then on the pandemic as well, because you have both an economic side to that concerns about the continuing overhang of the pandemic on economic growth. And we've seen things slow down a bit in this third quarter, but also making the response particularly on vaccines, as Kaitlan was saying, a more globally even response. And that challenge remains.

And President Biden makes this point often, a pandemic is a pandemic, does not know borders. You can't just control it in your own country, you have to be able to control it around the world.

BLITZER: And gas prices are going up right now. Inflation, a serious concern, especially in the United States right now. I noticed that the Saudi foreign minister was -- is here representing Saudi Arabia in that photo out, not the crown prince, not the king. I think the U.S. hoped that there would be some higher level Saudis.

COLLINS: And what was really interesting about how the White House talked about this over the last several days, as we were preparing to come on this trip, we were getting briefed by officials on what they were expecting from this, as we talked about who is not going to be here, because I think that's also just as critically important as who is here. And they were saying they genuinely were not sure who from Saudi Arabia was going to show up and represent Saudi Arabia.

And there are other leaders that are not here for certain reasons. Japan, they have elections.


COLLINS: Mexico is not here as well. There were some questions of the prime minister from India. He is here, though. Of course, the Chinese president is not here. He has not left China since the start of the pandemic. And so, you know, it's about 18 months or so that he has not traveled. And he's not expected to travel anytime soon, because he does have an upcoming summit with President Biden that is going to be just as closely watched as maybe more closely watched the President summit with President Putin was earlier this year. But it's going to be virtual, Wolf, and so will not be in person.

BLITZER: You know, we're just getting worried, Jim, and I want your thoughts on this. Italian authorities have just announced that they're stepping up security precautions. I hear around the summit not very far from where we are right now. According to Italy's interior ministry, more than 5,000 police forces have already been deployed, 400 units of the armed forces. Traffic for both pedestrians and vehicles will be prohibited around the entire area of the G20 Congress Center.

And it's a serious problem. I guess they're just doing this out of an abundance of caution. But they've got a security issue as well.

SCIUTTO: They do. They're concerned about protests on a number of these issues, including climate. They have a bit of an advantage in that the location of this summit, a bit south of the central part of the city, is a little bit, quarantined, is the right word, from the rest of the city gives them a security advantage.

But listen, you have the leaders of some of the world's most powerful countries here. We were watching with some amazement at the size of the U.S. motorcade as it sneaks its way through its streets here. Some of that base, as you were saying, on Italian security and health protocols in terms of how they divvy people up. But listen, they have to take that seriously. There are a lot of threats that these countries consider very real.

COLLINS: And the security is so high, but so also are the COVID precautions that have been taken here. And I've been struck by that. Of course, Italy was incredibly hard-hit by the pandemic. So they have some of the strictest rules that you see. And right now, there's actually a lot of tension internally in Italy over there, very strict requirements for workers to be vaccinated and to have this past that they have to prove that you are vaccinated.

Of course we all had to be vaccinated, tested multiple times a day to get in here and you see these world leaders. The last time they met in person at a G20 summit, people were not wearing a mask in the background --


COLLINS: -- as you see that they are now. And, of course, all of these world leaders walked up earlier today to greet the Italian Prime Minister. They were all wearing a mask until they walked up to take the photo. The Italian Prime Minister himself is getting tested every single day of the summit just to say, hey, yes, I am vaccinated but I'm also testing every single day --


COLLINS: -- because the level of precaution when it comes to COVID-19 is also incredibly high.


SCIUTTO: And folks at home might know this, all of us had to be tested and show proof of vaccination. Anybody involved in this conference that they're taking extra precautions to avoid any risk of this virus.

BLITZER: To get into the country, you got to be vaccinated, you got to --



BLITZER: -- you got to be tested. They're very nervous about all of that. But what was encouraging as I walked around Rome yesterday for a little bit of sightseeing, people were out in the streets --


BLITZER: -- but they were basically eating outside and they were enjoying, which was a very -- it's a wonderful city.

SCIUTTO: We want to know if you ate outside, though.

BLITZER: Yes, I did ate outside.

COLLINS: And how did you ate?

BLITZER: This is not exactly a hardship assignment being in Rome and then off to Scotland if I've been in more dangerous situations than it is here.

All right guys, standby. We're going to be watching all of this unfold. Boris and Amara, it's Rome, it's a beautiful city. When in Rome, as they say, you know what, do as the Romans do. We're enjoying.

WALKER: No doubt.

SANCHEZ: Enjoy some nice pasta, maybe some lasagna and beautiful views behind you, Wolf. As always, thank you. We're going to keep checking in throughout the hour with Wolf and the team. Of course, a critical moment for President Biden and his domestic agenda because Democratic leaders and Progressives have yet to reach a deal on the bipartisan infrastructure bill.

WALKER: Yes. CNN Congressional Reporter Daniella Diaz is live on Capitol Hill this morning. And Daniella, President Biden basically showing up, empty-handed as he arrived at the G20. So where do things stand right now?

DANIELLA DIAZ, CNN CONGRESSIONAL REPORTER: Amara, what you said is a good point. What President Joe Biden wanted was for the bipartisan infrastructure bill to be passed when he arrived to Europe and that did not happen. So where do things stand? Well, it looks like Progressives are going to sign on to this framework that the White House presented earlier this week.

The problem here is and why this bipartisan infrastructure bill, the separate bill that would -- has hard infrastructure would fix roads, bridges, transportation. There's a separate economic bill, that is the framework the White House put out this week, which would expand the nation's social safety net.

Now, Progressives, excuse me, said they would not support the bipartisan infrastructure bill when it goes to the floor, the House floor, for a vote unless it's voted at the same time, or at least within hours of this separate economic bill. But they also want assurances from two moderate Democratic senators who have not said yet publicly where they stand on this framework that the White House proposed for what's in and out of this economic bill. And those two senators, of course, being Joe Manchin of West Virginia, and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona.

Now, we do have sources telling us that Sinema behind the scenes seems like she's going to endorse this framework, which is something they -- Progressives wanted that reassurance from her, but we don't know where Senator Joe Manchin stands on this. He actually put out a statement on Thursday when this framework came out that said that it was positive, was a positive statement. However, he did not outright endorse this framework.

The thing is, they want to pass these two bills, the bipartisan infrastructure bill and economic bill at the same time, but they -- Democratic leaders wanted on Thursday is for the bipartisan bill to be put to a vote, which ultimately did not happen. That is why President Joe Biden visited the Capitol Thursday morning to try to unite the caucus and pass this bill.

Now, they did buy themselves time, Democratic leaders, on Thursday night when they passed a surface transportation funding bill. It was originally set to expire on October 31st. Now, it'll expire December 3rd. Remember that date, December 3rd is the new day that this surface transportation funding is going to expire, which would be funded through this bipartisan infrastructure bill, but also the debt- ceiling. The nation will reach its debt-ceiling, and the funding for the government will run out. So these are three major issues that Democratic leaders will not have to address when they come back. And they're going to work on this the next couple of weeks. Boris, Amara?

WALKER: We're just talking about the debt-ceiling and the funds running out. Daniella Diaz, here we are again, thank you so much.

All right, let's talk more about this with CNN Political Commentator and Political Anchor for Spectrum News, Errol Louis. Good morning to you, Errol. Yes, so, regarding where things stand right now, I mean, first of all, we know that President Biden took a pretty big gamble here, basically sticking his entire presidency and the party on these two major bills. Was that a mistake and will they prevail?

ERROL LOUIS, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: Good morning, Amara. The President, I think, really announced the stakes. I don't know if he raised the stakes. Frankly, this was always going to be true that both his presidency and the fate of the Democratic majority was going to hinge on whether or not they could get something done in this session. That's really why they've been locked in such gridlock up until now is that everybody knows that everything is on the line.

So, the President you know, kind of put it out there. And by the way, we should be clear that progress is going to go forward that they're now sort of drafting text which starts to put some shape to this whole project and votes can be expected.


Once the text is there, it's going to be very hard to make subsequent changes. So, there's a last minute tussle here. But the President, I think, properly told his colleagues that they're going to all either succeed or fail together, and that they've got to get some work done.

WALKER: You know, before President Biden departed for his trip to the G20 On Thursday, he had that caucus meeting, and he said, Look, you know, the world wants to know if we can function and, of course, he just shows up to Rome empty-handed. He's got nothing tangible in hand. I mean, what are the optics of this? How does -- how do you see the world leaders perceiving him?

LOUIS: Well, I don't know if it makes him look terribly weak, Amara. But I think it would have been nice if he had said, my party and my country are behind me and these are the steps that we're taking and we urge you to come along with us. That would be the President acting in his role, his unofficial role as leader of the free world.

On the other hand, you know, it would be really a function of the vast wealth and the power of the American economy that would have made that possible. And that's not something that other world leaders can match and are not always especially impressed by, frankly. It's, you know, the issues that have kept the world and the western world, the industrialized world from moving forward on climate change are not that they don't want to do it is that they've got tricky politics just like we do here in the United States. And they don't have the kind of wealth, almost endless wealth that the United States has to try and throw another $500 billion at a problem that we all have to work on together. So, he loses something. I don't know if he loses all that much in the way of prestige or negotiating power. It was going to be a hard slog with those other world leaders no matter what.

WALKER: Yes, but as you said, more than $500 billion to fight climate change. That is a lot of money and curious to know what President Biden will say during his major dress at the COP26 meeting.

Appreciate you joining us Errol Louis, Thank you.

LOUIS: Thank you.

WALKER: And parents are now one step closer to getting their kids vaccinated after the FDA grants Emergency Use Authorization for the Pfizer vaccine. We will tell you how soon shots can go into arms.

SANCHEZ: Plus, the legal issues starting to get sorted out in the accidental shooting on the movie set of "Rust". And the sheriff says, so far, no one is cleared yet, not even Alec Baldwin. We have more on that ahead.



SANCHEZ: Some good news to share with you for parents with young children. The Food and Drug Administration has now granted Emergency Use Authorization of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine for kids five to 11 years old.

WALKER: If the CDC director green lights their recommendation next week. 28 million kids could start getting the shots as early as Wednesday. Experts still urging parents to use safety precautions as their kids trick or treat this weekend.

CNN's Nadia Romero has more.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A trick of treat.

NADIA ROMERO, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Finally time for costumes and candy. Of course, with COVID-19 still lingering, mask have a double meeting this Halloween. Pediatrician Dr. Gary Kirkilas says the urge to get out and enjoy the spooky tradition widely canceled or scaled down last year should come with some precautions this weekend.

DR. GARY KIRKILAS, GENERAL PEDIATRICIAN AT PHOENIX CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL: You sort of notice those -- the clustering of kids in front of doors where you have maybe like 14, 15 kids all together. There's some risk for viral transmission in those cases. So, I still recommend masking outdoors, definitely recommend masking indoors. (END VIDEO CLIP)

ROMERO (voice-over): Even though kids are less likely to have severe complications from COVID 19 compared to adults.

KIRKILAS: It says right now, about 25 percent of viral transmission is occurring in children, and particularly, grade school children, the exact same children that are not vaccinated or have the option to be vaccinated.

ROMERO (voice-over): But that could soon change Friday. The FDA issued Emergency Use Authorization of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine for children five to 11, welcome news to Dr. William Gruber, who heads Pfizer's Vaccine Clinical Research and Development.

DR. WILLIAM GRUBER, SENIOR VP OF PFIZER VACCINE CLINICAL RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT: This is a great day for the health and well-being of children.

ROMERO (voice-over): But a recent Kaiser Family Foundation survey, shows about 66 percent of parents are somewhat or very concerned about the vaccines potential effect on their kids future fertility, despite the CDC saying there's no evidence that COVID-19 vaccines cause fertility problems.

GRUBER: There is no evidence to suggest nor is there any reason based on the components of the vaccine to expect any impact on fertility. And the CDC, other bodies have been very clear about that.

ROMERO (voice-over): Before kids ages five to 11 could get the shots, the CDC's advisory committee must recommend use of the vaccine, which could potentially come next week. And Dr. Gruber hopes another trusted agency signing off on the vaccine will help hesitant parents be reassured and the vaccine for their kids.

GRUBER: Let's work to spread factual information and reduce myth circulating in the community. I think that's the best that we can do.

Nadia Romero, CNN, Atlanta.


SANCHEZ: Coming up, new details about the January 6th riots. What an attorney for former President Trump reportedly told Mike Pence's team, as the Vice President was hiding from a violent mob, threatening to execute him. And, of course, tomorrow night, don't miss an all new episode of CNN's Original Series, Diana. It focuses on a tell-all book, the accusations, the breakdown of royal marriage, all of it Sunday night at 9:00 right here on CNN.



SANCHEZ: There are new details emerging about the January 6th insurrection and how the former president's team tried to pressure Mike Pence to throw out the results of the 2020 election. According to The Washington Post, John Eastman, an attorney for Donald Trump, was e-mailing Mike Pence's team while they were under guard in the Capitol that day, hiding from a violent mob. Eastman was apparently blaming Pence for the violence.

You remember some writers were chanting, "Hang Mike Pence" as they stormed the Capitol. Eastman claimed that Pence's refusal to block certification of the election is what caused the attack. He also continued to push Pence to act even after the riot ended. Eastman has confirmed the content of the e-mails to the "Washington Post" but denies that he was blaming Mike Pence. Let's bring in CNN legal analyst and criminal defense attorney Joey Jackson. Joey, this new reporting shows the extent of the pressure that the White House was putting on former Vice President Mike Pence. What do you make of these new details?

JOEY JACKSON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Boris, good morning to you. I make that, it is completely irresponsible and beyond unfortunate. You know, there are people who are in special positions of authority, and it's like a doctor for example during the COVID pandemic, forgive the analogy, but people rely upon what you say because people want to know. Is it safe to take? Should I be doing it? What's your recommendation? What did the study show?

Well, drawing that analogy to law, lawyers have a special responsibility because of the knowledge you possess, that's specialize that you go to school for. And when you panel theories that really have no weight, that are against the constitution, that are not supported by any authority, that are legally untenable, and you're at the highest levels of government, I mean, it's quite shocking. And then a step further bar, it's not only you peddling that, but you have the person at the time who is in charge, that's -- you know, the most powerful person on earth who is buying into it and believing it.

And then to the -- you know, the shot you were just showing there as it related to what it really amounted to. Because of these theories, you have people that believe this, and it's an insurrection upon the Capitol. So, what I make of it is that, you know, we just need to do better. And I think the bar quite frankly, last point, Boris, has a responsibility as it did in Rudy Giuliani's case to rebuke it and take people's licenses away who were doing things like this. So, I just think it has no place and it was just a shame that you have somebody doing that, there needs to be consequences.

SANCHEZ: So, let's talk specifically about potential consequences. The "Post" is reporting that Pence's chief of staff -- or rather his chief counsel, his top lawyer have been corresponding with Eastman, and he wrote an opinion article that was never published, but the "Washington Post" obtained a copy of a draft of that opinion article, and dated, he says that Eastman, quote, "displayed a shocking lack of awareness of how those practical implications were playing out in real time." He's talking about blaming Pence for those rioters outside determined to potentially execute the former vice president. I'm curious about these details and whether they present any potential legal exposure for folks in Trump's inner circle? JACKSON: I think they do, and they should. And I don't say that, you

know, with any political implications beyond that, right, or behind them, I say it because what you say matters. When you have a special responsibility, when you're possessed of knowledge and special skill, when people rely upon what you say, you have to ensure that what you say has some basis of support. And don't get me wrong, Boris, lawyers make arguments every day, right? Some strong argument, others -- and in fact is our responsibility to push the envelope. But we can't peddle things that really just have no basis or merit or any really substance in fact.

And so when you do things like that, I think the bar, right, where you get your license needs to look into it. I know his employers have, that is Mr. Eastman, who was essentially engaging in this fiction have looked and evaluated to determine whether he's fit to serve in the capacities he served in.

And I think anybody else who does this, similar to what I noted before, ala Rudy Giuliani, you know, need to have the bar look at them and take actions against them, and if that leads to suspension of the license or revocation, then so be it. And again, I say that without any politics behind it, I say it because what you say matters and it leads to things like insurrections that really impair and affect our democracy.

SANCHEZ: All right, an important point there, what you say matters. Joey Jackson, we've got to leave the conversation there, always appreciate seeing you, thanks.

JACKSON: Thank you, Boris.

WALKER: A historic meeting between the two most powerful Catholics in the world. We'll tell you what President Biden and the pope spoke about during their meeting.



WALKER: Facebook has changed its company name to Meta as it shifts its focus to the virtual reality Metaverse. But the change comes as they face scrutiny over hundreds of internal documents leaked by a whistleblower.

SANCHEZ: Critics say this is just putting lipstick on a pig, a rebranding effort trying to overhaul Facebook's reputation to overcome a series of scandals and PR nightmares. CNN's Paula Newton has more.


PAULA NEWTON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: In a corporate event that seemed to have the vibe of a budget Sci-fi flick --


NEWTON: Mark Zuckerberg, the founder and head of all things Facebook introduced the Metaverse.

ZUCKERBERG: Together, we can finally put people at the center of our technology and deliver an experience where we are present with each other.

NEWTON: What is it? Put simply, an immersive way to connect online for both business and pleasure, using virtual and augmented reality. And Zuckerberg is all in rebranding Facebook's corporate name to Meta; it's from the Greek word, "beyond", he says.


ZUCKERBERG: Your devices won't be the focal point of your attention anymore.

NEWTON: Now, if Meta is the future, in the present, the Facebook brand on the site and the app won't change. What Zuckerberg is trying to pull off is more profound than that.

SHEERA FRENKEL, THE NEW YORK TIMES: He's trying to take control of what he thinks is going to be the big next wave of technology. And the question is going to be whether the world accepts that. Whether people in spite of all of the controversy, in spite of all of the crises that have hit Facebook in the last month, are going to want to put their trust in Facebook.


NEWTON: Despite accusations of a toxic business model and dangerous fallout to match, Zuckerberg's strategy of plowing ahead with ambitious market domination has worked.

ZUCKERBERG: Our mission remains the same --

NEWTON: And in rebranding, Zuckerberg has nothing substantive to say on how Facebook can become a safer, social media space especially for teenagers and young people.

ZUCKERBERG: I know that some people would say that this isn't a time to focus on the future. And I want to acknowledge that there are important issues to work on in the present. There always will be.


NEWTON: In recent months, former Facebook employees had provided evidence that Facebook was aware of its role in disseminating the misinformation that breeds and spreads on its social media platforms. In a statement, Zuckerberg said the documents released were cherry- picked to present a misleading narrative about the company.

HAUGEN: There's pattern --

NEWTON: Frances Haugen says she fears the same problems will occur in Facebook's new Metaverse.

HAUGEN: I was shocked to hear recently that Facebook is rebranding -- is -- wants to double-down on the Metaverse, and that they're going to hire 10,000 engineers in Europe to work on the Metaverse. I think there's a view inside the company that safety is a cost, a cost center, it's not a growth center which I think is very short term in thinking.

NEWTON: What is not short-term, the insidious effects of Facebook's social media platforms worldwide. Regulators have so far failed to create and enforce laws that prevent the worst abuses online, those powered by algorithms and AI that can efficiently disperse misinformation and hate. To that, Zuckerberg has added a new challenge that potentially even more invasive Metaverse. Paula Newton, CNN.


SANCHEZ: Thanks to Paula for that report. The Atlanta Braves one step closer to winning the World Series. Their pitchers dominant on the mound last night, Coy Wire walks us through the highlights next.

WALKER: Very exciting. But first, we salute every day people who have committed their lives to making the world a better place. This week, we announced the top 10 CNN Heroes of 2021. Here's CNN's Anderson Cooper.


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN: I'm Anderson Cooper, this year, we celebrate a milestone, the 15th anniversary of CNN Heroes. For a decade and a half, we've had the honor of introducing you to extraordinary everyday people who are changing the world in a time when we need kindness and courage more than ever. We're thrilled to announce this year's top 10 CNN Heroes.

From Philadelphia, pediatric surgeon Ala Stanford saw COVID-19 ravaging communities of color, so she built trust and brought testing and vaccinations to more than 75,000 people.

From San Francisco, David Flink is building understanding and confidence using his journey with ADHD and dyslexia to help kids with learning differences across America thrive.

In New York City, Hector Guadalupe uses fitness training to help formerly incarcerated men and women like himself get family-sustaining jobs and build careers.

From Cartagena, Colombia, Jenifer Colpas brings eco-friendly energy, safe water and sanitation to struggling Colombians living in remote areas.

Lynda Doughty of Phippsburg, Maine, monitors 2,500 miles of coastline providing life-saving support and medical care to thousands of marine animals.

From Bali, Indonesia, exchanging plastic waste for rice. Restaurant owner Made Janur Yasa has sent tons of plastic for recycling and provided food to thousands of families during the pandemic.

And in Simi Valley, California, Michele Neff Hernandez has turned her profound grief into sustaining support for the widowed.

On college, Patricia Gordon walked away from her Beverly Hills private practice to save women around the world from dying of preventable and treatable cervical cancer.

On L.A.'s Skid Row, Shirley Raines brings dignity and respect to thousands of homeless people every week, rain or shine.

And in Malduguri, Nigeria, Zannah Mustapha educates orphaned children from both sides of a violent extremist conflict, providing support to more than 2,000 boys and girls a year.

Congratulations to the top 10 CNN Heroes of 2021, now it's time for you to choose who inspires you the most.


Who should be named CNN Hero of the year and receive $100,000 to continue their great work, go to right now to vote, and be sure to watch the 15th annual CNN Heroes all-star tribute as we announce the hero of the year and celebrate all this year's honorees live, Sunday, December 12th.


WALKER: All right, and as you heard, go to to vote for who inspires you the most, and be sure to join Anderson Cooper and special guest Kelly Ripa as they host the 15th annual CNN Heroes all- star tribute live on Sunday, December 12th. We'll be right back.



WOLF BLITZER, CNN: While President Biden is struggling to unite his own party behind his agenda back at home and facing a wide range of critically important issues with global leaders here in Europe, his 90-minute sit-down with Pope Francis yesterday was a warm, deeply personal start to his overseas trip. The president called the visit wonderful and shared one key exchange with reporters.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. President, did the issue of abortion come up at all?

JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: No, it didn't. It came up, we just talked about the fact that he was happy I was a good Catholic and should keep receiving communion.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He said that you should keep receiving communion?


(END VIDEO CLIP) BLITZER: Paul Elie is joining us right now, he's a contributor for

"The New Yorker Magazine", a senior fellow for Georgetown University's Berkley Center for Religion, Peace and World Affairs. Paul, thanks very much for joining us. I know many had speculated if abortion would come up during the president's visit with Pope Francis. The president said it did not. What do you make of that, because he did say the pope should -- the pope supports that he continue to receive communion.

PAUL ELIE, CONTRIBUTOR, THE NEW YORKER: Well, Wolf, I think that Pope Francis while meeting President Biden as a head of state also treated it in a way as a pastoral call. A member of the Catholic Church coming to him in a kind of fraternity and also possibly reaching out to him in a difficult moment to know where he stands or what's best. It's been characterized in the press, in Italy, "L'Osservatore Romano"; the Vatican newspaper as Francis' benedizione or blessing to Joe Biden, and that casual and religious word captures what I gather was the spirit of that part of the encounter.

BLITZER: It was really an important moment for the president of the United States, only the second Catholic president of the U.S. We saw the two men actually joking with each other at one point. The two obviously have a warm relationship, they've met before. What does it mean that the two most powerful Catholics in the world share such a deep connection.

ELIE: Well, one of the things that Pope Francis has made so obvious in his time as pope is that religion is personal, and he's taken this religion that has a global reach in global scale and made it quite personal through his encounters. Whether it's embracing a person with leprosy in St. Peters Square or looking eye-to-eye with other world leaders. So, the fact that the two of them, they're in a room with the weight of the world on their shoulders are able to treat each other, person-to-person, says a lot about how Francis sees Catholicism and sees the church.

BLITZER: President Biden as you know would be heading off to Scotland, Monday and Tuesday after the G20 here in Rome for what's called the COP26 Climate Summit. But Pope Francis is not going to Scotland. And you wrote, and I read your article in "The New Yorker", that it's a confounding decision for someone who's advocated so passionately for the need for world leaders to tackle the climate crisis. I know, you were disappointed that Pope Francis decided not to go to the summit in Scotland. Tell us why?

ELIE: So, Pope Francis first of all has identified himself with care for our common home. It's a central theme with his pontificate, his document Laudato si which runs through about 40,000 words is probably the most significant statement of his -- of his time as pope. It's the basis for a second document called Fratelli tutti, about the inter- dependence of people and what we owe each other for the common good. So, he's not unfairly identified as the environmental pope. What we saw yesterday from the attention page due to his meeting with President Biden is the immense charisma that he has and that the office has.

So, the chance to go to Glasgow, one world leader among many and put his weight in for the attention to become a crisis, that was really significant. And the fact that he's not there, I think is a real loss.

BLITZER: Why do you think he decided not to go?

ELIE: Well, when the announcement was made, reasons were vague and various projections were made in the press. COVID is certainly a reason, there are 30,000 people gathering there and the risk of infection is not insignificant.


Everything from the fact that it was not going to be a pastoral trip, that he wouldn't have time to deal with the people from Scotland, and the fact that the national airline Alitalia which operated the papal airplane shut down a few days ago. Those were the reasons given, myself, I didn't really find them sufficient. Pope John Paul made more than 100 journeys, Francis has made 33 journeys to -- countries including a war zone, Central African Republic. I think if they wanted to get it done, they could have gotten it done, and as I said, I'm confounded that they didn't.

BLITZER: You've written a very strong article in "The New Yorker", I recommend our viewers read it. Paul Elie of Georgetown University, thank you so much for joining us. And to our viewers, we'll be right back with our continuing coverage of the G20 Summit from right here in Rome. We'll be right back.