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U.S. Jobs Situation and Outlook; The 25th Amendment and Debate Surrounding It; The Work of Volunteers to Transport Service Puppies

Aired January 12, 2021 - 04:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: Hello everyone and thank you for giving us 10 minutes of your time. My name is Carl Azuz. The world`s largest economy

is our first topic this Tuesday. The U.S. government recently reported that 140,000 jobs were lost in the month of December. For perspective, the

economy gained 654,000 jobs in October and 336,000 in November and economists had expected that 50,000 jobs would have been added last month.

But the government says an increase in corona virus cases and the efforts to contain the pandemic, which include restrictions on restaurants and bars

contributed to the job losses. Not every industry took a hit.

While the leisure and hospitality industry has been worst effected, the retail industry added jobs last month. So the losses weren`t spread

evenly. As far as the unemployment rate goes, this is the percentage of American workers who don`t have a job, the government says it stayed at 6.7

percent from November to December. A strong economy benefits from a lower unemployment rate. America`s got close to 15 percent in April when many

businesses were shut down. But it had been improving since then, getting lower every month until December.

So is there any good news in this? Well come analysts believe that economic stimulus packages passed by the Trump Administration and expected

from the Biden Administration will help though they do increase the national debt. And if America`s health situation improves with new corona

virus treatments or vaccines, economists expect this spring and summer to be good for the jobs picture.

10 Second Trivia. The most recent amendment to the U.S. Constitution deals with what topic? Voting age, presidential succession, lawmaker`s pay, or

poll taxes. The 27th Amendment which delays Congressional pay raises until after the next election was ratified in 1992.

But it`s an amendment ratified in 1967 that`s our next subject today. For years, political opponents of U.S. President Donald Trump have been

discussing the 25th Amendment and their calls have grown louder in the wake of the violence carried out by some of President Trump`s supporters at the

U.S. Capitol building last week. Section 1 of the 25th Amendment begins simply with the words, in case of the removal of the president from office

or of his death or resignation, the vice-president shall become president. But CNN`s John Avlon explains how the amendment and the debate around it

get a lot more complicated from there.


JOHN AVLON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The text is relatively recent born right after John F. Kennedy died brought up by members of administration

including his brother Bobby who shuttered to think what might have happened had the president been only incapacitated in Dallas. In fact, as recently

as 1965, this nation had no real plan for what to do if a president couldn`t discharge his duties. The issue first came up way back in 1841

when William Henry Harrison died just a month after taking office. No one really knew what to call Vice-President John Tyler. Critics simply called

him, your "accidency". Decades later, President James Garfield was shot and lingered incapacitated for more than two months.

Afraid of causing a Constitutional crisis, Vice-President Chester A. Arthur of the really great sideburns, avoiding doing anything presidential and the

government ground to a halt. In 1919, President Woodrow Wilson had a stroke and his second wife Edith essentially ran the country for 18 months.

By that point, the 25th Amendment was long overdue but it took the Kennedy assassination to get it written. And it didn`t get used by a president for

another two decades when President Reagan had a 1985 surgery but it got it`s real test two years later. That`s when incoming Reagan Chief of Staff

Howard Baker was urged to consider it after reports that Reagan was in mental decline.

Baker agreed to observe the president for deficiencies and when he didn`t find any, the 25th Amendment was never mentioned again in the Reagan White

House. It`s been invoked just twice more, both by George W. Bush for colonoscopies and that`s really been it. So the question we`re confronting

today is whether the 25th Amendment could be used to remove a president who some feel is quote "detrimental to health of our republic". Remember, the

amendment was written primarily to address physical incapacity but it does include a section never used on removing a president deemed unfit and that

section reads like a Rube Goldberg machine.

Basically it goes like this, the vice-president along with the majority of the cabinet can send a letter to the president pro tempore of the Senate

and the Speaker of the House. And then as soon as that letter is received, bam, the president is out and the vice-president becomes the acting

president but not so fast. The president can then write his own letter and send it back to Congress saying, he`s feeling perfectly fine. After which

the vice-president and a majority of the cabinet still want him gone, they have to send another letter. But once that happens within three weeks,

two-thirds of Congress must vote to declare the president unfit otherwise he becomes president again and the VP goes back to his old job but

presumably not for long.


AZUZ: Democrats in the House of Representatives have been pushing for Vice-President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment against President

Trump. Analysts say it`s unlikely that either the vice-president or the president`s cabinet will support that move. But Monday, House Democrats

also introduced an Article of Impeachment that formally charges President Trump with quote "incitement of insurrection". It concerns the Capitol

riots and the House plans to vote on the charge later this week. Republicans in the chamber have urged Democrats not to move forward

concerning impeachment, saying it would further divide the country at a time when President Trump and President-elect Joe Biden are calling for




AZUZ: Animals on the job. The U.S. government defines a service dog as an animal that`s individually trained to do work or perform tasks for a person

with a disability. The process of raising and training one of these dogs is complex and costs roughly $25,000. But thanks to some generous

volunteers in Northern California, part of some service dogs transportation comes free.


JOSH HOCHBERG, OWNER OF SONOMA JET CENTER: There`s a lot of stuff unsettled even today with COVID and -- and everything else going on in the

world. And, so, it`s really nice to be able to use our aircraft to make lives better for people. My name is Josh Hochberg and I live in Sonoma

County, California in Santa Rosa. I own a company called Sonoma Jet Center. Canine Companions for Independence is an awesome local

organization. Actually, it`s a national organization headquartered in Santa Rosa, California.

The Canine Companions raises highly trained service puppies that can do -- service dogs that can help people lead independent lives. Back when COVID

started, they no longer could use the airlines and so they started relying on private aircraft to take the dogs where they needed to go. And so, some

friend of mine and I volunteered all the travel, all the flights, all the fuel, it`s all donated by us. And -- and I volunteered to transport the

dogs all around the country.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A private pilot flew 14 puppies from California all the way to Colorado just for us. I`m Rachael (ph) and I went to Texas Tech

University and that`s where I found about Canine Companions for Independence and I`ve been on the wait list for about eight months for this

little puppy. Soon, I`ll have her for about 14 to 16 months and we`ll just train her and give her basic obedience and house manners and socialization

and then she goes to professional training for six months. And then hopefully she`ll be placed as a service dog.

HOCHBERG: They get trained to do all sort of specialized tasks. Say, somebody has trouble opening doors. Well the -- the dogs can be trained to

open the doors for people. So what the dogs really do is they help people to lead independent lives.


AZUZ: Now that`s a report that`s got "tongues and tails wagging". Taking flight turns beagles into eagles, aero dales into "air mail". It gives new

"facets to Bassetts", "transportation to Transylvanians". It basically brings a whole "New Foundland" of possibilities turning every terrier into

a "sky terrier" and every breed into a working one.

That`s about all the puns I could work up for today`s show. At, we heard from Menihek Wascagon High School. It is

located in Saskatchewan, Canada and it`s great to have you watching. For CNN 10, I`m Carl Azuz.