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tv   Today  NBC  December 23, 2010 7:00am-9:00am EST

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good morning. buried in mud, dangerous mudslides in southern california force families to flee their homes. the storms may be over for now. but the danger from seven straight days of rain could last for weeks. aloha. president obama arrives in hawaii early this morning after a string of sucsses in the lame duck congress. can the president carry that momentum into his next two years in office. suddenly silent, one of nfl's most brash and outspoken coaches put in the hot seat. >> this is a personal matter. you know, i hope you can respect
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the fact i wish not to discuss it. >> as he's questioned about some personal videos that have become the talk of the internet today, thursday, december 23rd, 2010. good morning. welcome to "today" on a thursday morning. i'm matt lauer. >> i'm in more meredith vieira this morning. after a week of relentless rain, residents in california will finally get a break today. >> it left some looking like war zones. up to 30 homes covered in a blanket of mud. we will talk to one family who just lost everything days before christmas. also, the "spider-man" controversy heating up on
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broadway and they were forced to cancel the show all together. how do the stars of the musical feel about it? and how does the woman accused ing lindsay lohan at th betty ford clinic feel about it. first, we will go to highland, california, about 60 miles east of los angeles. good morning to you. >> reporter: matt, good morning. 24 hours ago, christmas trees were up in this neighborhood, residents ready for the holiday weekend. now, dozens of homes in this neighborhood look like this. this is a patio cover some 12 feet high, hit by a wall of surging mud. many say it's a miracle everybody made it out alive. a blanket of mud, a community buried in debris. >> i've never seen anything like this. >> reporter: in highland, california, flash flooding began
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when a nearby river spilled into town. first a stream of water, then a' of mud. brian dubrisky rachb. >> it was like a liquid hill. >> reporter: carolyn hernandez narrowly escaped with her own life. she used an emergency ladder to get out of her own house. >> the whole black yard was flooded and before i knew it, i had a roaring river in my living room. i have nothing left, nothing! >> reporter: after a week of wet weather, california was hit with a knock-out punch wednesday. in orange county, neighbors couldn't stop the hills from giving way, roads became rivers and rising water turned to solid mud. in laguna beach, 30 rescues. jeremies he' home was squamped with four feet of water and his neighbor got out through a
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window. >> we sought shelter with a neighbor for a while. it was pretty scary. >> reporter: a half-inch of rain in a single week. am track from l.a. to san diego was shut down, roads impassable. six counties remain under a state of emergency. qualcomm stadium in san diego is an island. 47 people at a nearby hotel were rescued when a creek burst its banks. all across the west, raging rivers cause problems. in little field, arizona, this home on the edge, this property already a total los. in utah, the state george river swallowed equipment and destroyed a bridge. but back in highland, the water is gone, the damage is done. many here won't be coming home for christmas. the damage in this neighborhood alone is going to be in the millions. the storm has moved on but it is going to take weeks if not
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months to clean up this mess. back to you. >> miguel, thank you. >> karen hernandez, the woman who made that second story escape from her window is with us now. good morning. >> good morning. >> i know this happened around 4:30 in the morning. you, your son and daughter were all asleep. tell us what happened. what did you see and hear? >> i woke up at 4:30 thinking somebody was trying to break into my back door and ran downstairs to the patio door and flung it open. i saw water coming as fast as it could. the kids ran downstairs with me. we moved as fast as we could, but it only took seconds before my home was a roaring river. >> you got out with an emergency ladder you set up for a fire. did you ever imagine having to use it, especially under those conditions? >> no. we never did. we just kept it for purely emergency reasons. but this was an emergency. we needed to get out and we needed to get out fast.
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>> you can see by the pictures you're looking at -- >> the water was rising fast. >> you lived in that houses 18 years. once the mud settled and you were able to get a look inside your house, can you tell us what it was like to see your home and your belongings in that condition? >> it's devastating. we have nothing left. that's all we have. now, we don't even have flood insurance, so we have nothing, nothing. >> i know that money has been tight for your family this year, karen. you just had gotten all of your christmas presents under the christmas tree. how do you plan on trying to reclaim part of the holidays? what's your way forward at this point? >> we don't have anything. don't have anything planned. we have nothing. we saved up what we could for the kids. now, all that is gone.
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snow i know you checked with your insurance company and you said your insurance company will not cover you for this type of damage. do you have plans? >> no. they -- we don't have any plans. right now, we're just going to have to live from day-to-day. >> i know, certainly, that you are so thankful you had that ladder there, your entire family got out safely. i know you have to feel some gratitude at least for your lives at this point giveen the unbelievable conditions you had to suffer through to get out. >> yeah, we did. i have to be grateful my kids are out alive and well. i thank god for that. the whole neighborhood around us and my family, they were here with us within seconds and i got to thank them for all that they did for us. so i -- i give thanks to everybody. >> karen hernandez, we certainly wish you the best in these really difficult days, and we are, too, so happy you all were
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able to get out safely. we wish the best for you moving forward. karen hernandez, thanks. >> thank you. >> your heartbreaks for karen and her family. >> oh, my goodness, not that it would ever be good timing to go through something like this, especially days before christmas. >> you have to grab some small positive thing out of this. she and her family is safe. that ladder. >> imagine if she hadn't had it. how many of us have that in our homes? >> i may go out -- you think about that now. and to all the people who are suffering. car quintilla is over at the newsdesk filling in for ann. good morning. >> good morning. we have breaking news this morning. there's been an explosion at the swiss embassy at rome. reportedly a blast went off when one package was opened and one person was seriously injured. live fire artillery drills are under way and pyongyang responded it's ready to wage nuclear weapons to wage a quote
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holy war against the south. a chicago department lost two of its own with two killed under a falling building and injuring 17 others. recommending former chief of staff really emanuel be able to run for congress. saying he does not need a one year residency. bradley manning, charged with leaking thousands of secret cables to wikileaks. they have equated his conditions to torture and the pentagon denies manning is being mistreated. secret service agents in texas were rattled overnight when a local man lost control of his vehicle and careened on to former president george bush's lawn. the driver was briefly detained. no one was injured. it's been 130 years, but the name billy the kid may finally be cleared. new mexico governor bill richardson could pardon the outlaw for killing a sheriff in
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1878. historic documents suggest the gunslinger was promised amnesty for the crime in exchange for testimony in another case. it is now 7:09. back to matt, amy and stephanie. >> thank you very much. stephanie is here because al takes time off. good to see you here. >> we will see what we see today and through christmas. they will finally have a break in southern california and the weather will track eastbound for a southern christmas. up and down the mississippi valley and christmas day, in the south, where we will see that white stuff flying. on sunday, when you're traveling home, it could >> that is something we are tracking very carefully. a couple of quiet day's. partly cloudy but wendy. beautiful tomorrow.
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matt, over to you. >> all right, stephanie. thank you. the christmas rush kicks into high gear today. aaa expects an estimated 92 million americans will travel 50 miles from home, most of those people buy automobiles. what can you expect as you head out? tom costello has insight. good morning to you. >> reporter: good morning. expect higher gas prices. nationwide, averaging $3 a gallon, up 40 cents from a year ago, hawaii and alaska are always the most expensive. in the lower 48, in the coast, $3.25 a gallon and new york, $3.26 a gallon. texas, it's going for $2.83 a gallon right now and the cheapest gas in the country,
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colorado, $2.74. if you're leaving home over the holidays, you'll be in good company. of the 92 million americans who are traveling, more than 85 million are driving. a little more than 1,000 miles on average. gas prices are biting. >> i was shocked when i see $30 to fill a regular small little car, something that should be under $20, like 30 bucks. >> reporter: as of today, traffic is going to start building on the nation's toll roads. on the east coast, 12 million cars will travel new jersey's garden state parkway over the bridge. the busiest day, december 30th with1.2 million cars. out west, san francisco's bayh bridge is expecting 122,000 cars today, its busiest travel day. meanwhile, just over 2.7 million americans are taking to the skies. paying on average, $400 for round trip ticket. at la guardia airport, some passengers are already
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frustrated. >> i think they're forgetting the fact that we're paying customers. >> reporter: all the controversy we saw over thanksgiving about tsa pat-downs and full body scans seems to have died down in recent weeks. >> we do things now that we could not have imagined doing a few years ago, taking off our shoes, pouring liquids into tiny bottles to get on airplanes. travelers adjust and are resilient. >> reporter: because we keep traveling prices go up. a hotel averaging $125 a night, $6 more than last year. will consumers continue to leave home for 2011? >> if we see continuing confidence and people feeling better about their financial situations, i think you can possibly see more people looking to travel in 2011 than they did in 2010. >> reporter: back on the travel beat, we found a group of frequent flyers and their fearless leader all warming up
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for their round the world journey. the faa says it already cleared the big guy for his friday night flight though some of his reindeer may need an antler trim to improve their aerodynamics. >> it's a real aerodynamic drag. turns out also santa is loaded up with gps technology. so he's god to od to go on the y night. good thing the doesn't have to fly because the airlines raked in $4 billion in fees for baggage fees and the like and late change fees and told those fees aren't going anywhere. >> 25 bucks extra per gift for santa, that would add up in a big hurry, tom. appreciate it. it's 7:14. here's amy. thank you. president obama arrives in hawaii this morning to begin his christmas vacation after leaving washington on a high note. nbc correspondent savannah guthrie his here with details. good morning. >> good morning to you.
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there are plenty of fights next year as republicans gain power. after the agony of defeat in the mid-terms, the white house is savoring the thrill of victory. the president tarts his 11-day vacation to hawaii leaving washington with a string of bipartisan victories he was anxious to highlight. >> a lot of people predicted after the mid-term elections, washington would be headed for more part tisanship and more gridlock. >> on elimination of further strategic arms -- >> reporter: they passed the policy objective, the new s.t.a.r.t. arms treaty with russia. 13 republicans broke ranks with republicans to support the agreement. >> this has been a good day. i am overwhelmed. this is a very good day. >> reporter: the president also signed into law the repeal of
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ban of gays in america. >> i say to all americans, gay or straight, who want nothing more to defend this country in uniform, your country needs you, your country wants you and we will be honored to welcome you into the ranks of the finest military the world has ever known. >> reporter: later, before reporters, the president acknowledged wrestling with his own position on gay marriage. >> my baseline is a strong civil union that provides them the protections and the legal rights that married couples have. but i recognize that from their perspective, it is not enough. >> reporter: coming down to the wire, republicans and democrats also reached a compromise to provide health benefits to 9/11 first responders who became ill from working at ground zero. >> this is a proud day, a proud day for everyone who's been involved in this effort and for everyone who bears the title, citizen of the usa.
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>> reporte >> the president will spend the next 11 days in hawaii. he will get briefings every day but this is supposed to be r&r and aides are already at work on the state of the union speech next year. >> thank you very much. rachel maddow, host of the rachel maddow show on msnbc. it's halftime. we don't know if it's his first term or last term. good couple of weeks. how would you rate the first two years. >> i think if you want to look at what the president wanted to accomplish legislatively, not the big, i want to transform the nation, i think he's 85% of the way through what he said he wanted to do. >> what were the big failures? >> stuff he said he's still working on. immigration reform. energy reform, closing guantanamo and getting rid of those bush tax cuts just extended in this deal with republicans. >> we remember on the campaign and saw him in just about every appearance he made on the campaign two years ago, he said
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he wanted to get rid of the tax cuts for the wealthiest americans. whatever you want to call the bill passed last week, compromise or whatever, he failed to accomplish that. >> what's interesting, he said he never changed his mind about it, said he would have loved to gotten rid of them but wasn't able to pull it off in his negotiations with republicans. that's why his base and supporters were very worried after that deal. i talked with meredith. he wasn't changing his mind about what he wanted. maybe he wasn't powerful enough, agile to get done what he wanted. then the lame duck two week session like everything was checked off. >> let's talk about a more difficult things to get your arms around. hope and change message he ran on to quote a famous former alaska governor, how's that hopy changy stuff working out for you? is it working in washington or the same. >> the way the white house handled the "don't ask, don't
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tell" signing ceremony yesterday. they didn't hold it at the white house, held it in an auditorium in the interior department to allow all the people who wanted to be there and cheer the president. to see the president almost elate at that event, smacking the desk and saying, this is done, yes, we did. to see them trying to bring in so many people for that, make it a real event, make the president give a real speech, i think they're trying to reconnect his presidency to the narrative that made people want to elect him in the first base. >> to connect him to the base. you think that issue may do it better than issues in the past? >> it is an issue that will make the base happy. 65 senate votes passed repeal of don't "don't ask, don't tell." there were a ton of republican senators voted for the s.t.a.r.t. treaty. part of his message is there will not be bad guys here. a lot of people in the base, i would say myself included as a strong liberal wanted him to take apart republicanism, he
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never wanted to do it that way, said we have common ground and can move the country forward without being divisive. the "don't ask, don't tell" fight with other things is the way he wants to move forward with republican support on common grounds. >> we will see how it works with the new year upon us. 19 minutes after the hour. you can catch rachel's show at 9:00 p.m. eastern and pacific time on msnbc. to amy. >> thank you. there was new fall-out over the accident during the performance of the broadway show ""spider-man":turn off the dark" and other actors calling for spi "spider-man" to close. good morning. >> reporter: good morning. a big big problem. this is a big production. issues nothing like this. you have four actors already injured, one remains in the hospital. it's gotten so bad, city, state and federal investigators came here to the theater to check
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around and last night's show ended up getting canceled because of it. now, some famous broadway actors are taking it a step further saying "spider-man" should be shut down for good. the stars of "spider-man" took to broadway last night on the sidewalk, signing autographs and taking pictures for disappointed fans. >> refunding tickets over here. >> reporter: wednesday night's performance was abruptly canceled just hours before curtain up. >> we did ask for a refund because now i don't know if the show will go on. >> it is a mess. >> reporter: at a performance this week, spidy stuntman fell 30 feet and tumbled headfirst into the orchestra pit and his safety rope snapped. his name is chris tierney and he's in the hospital with broken ribs and internal breeding.
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another actor broke his wrists. in november, an actor suffered a condition constitution when a cable hit her in the head. reed carney plays spider-man himself and defended the show. >> reporter: do you feel safe? >> i do. it was an unfortunate event and safety precautions have gone up more since then. i've always felt safe. >> reporter: patrick page plays the green goblin. >> the injuries on our show is a terrible thing. no one wants to discount that at all. injuries in a big show are something that happens. >> reporter: but some broadway actors want "spider-man" shut down now. the star of next to normal tweeted, does someone have to die? spider-man should be ashamed of itself. the star of rent took to facebook calling spider-man a steaming pile of actor crippling expletives. >> this is the worst i have ever seen. if there is another injury, this show is finished.
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>> reporter: they're checking for violations. wednesday in inspectors and producers worked together making changes to the show to improve safety. there's a lot at stake. ""spider-ma spider-man: turn off the dark" is the most expensive show ever. >> i think you will see a lot of scared actors. not feeling safe. >> reporter: the next performance is scheduled for tonight. producers assure us it will go on as scheduled. as we saw last night, they canceled it two hours before. i bought you tickets. >> i'll get in line. thank you. coming up, caught in a controversy over personal videos posted online. this is "today" on nbc.
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coming up, how does the woman who was assaulted by
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lindsay lohan, she claims, feel about the actress? >> live, local, latebreaking. this is wbal-tv 11 news today in baltimore. >> good morning. i am stan stovall. here is sarah caldwell and traffic pulse 11. >> recovering from earlier problems out there. this is still blocked from accident.
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we have activity to the left shoulder because of an accident. anne arundel drive, watch for debris. downed wires to report in the towson region at baltimore avenue and pennsylvania ave. everything looking good on the j.f.x. we will show you what is going on and on the earlier accident scene. pretty big mess on the left shoulder. that same delays at all on the west side. -- not seeing delays at all on the west side. >> we in the low 30's around the area. the winds are quite blustery. nice northwest flow today. 15 to 20 miles per hour. it is going to be quite windy today. christmas eve itself, down to
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24. throughout the day on christmas, increasing cloudiness and a chance of flurries. close enough to us on shore, then we will have a good chance of seeing accumulating snow. >> check the bottom of your screen for updated news and traffic information. back at 7:55 with another live update.
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7:30 on a thursday morning. the 23rd of december, 2010. christmas just two days from now. we're happy to have so many people spending part of their holiday season with us in rockefeller plaza. i'm matt lauer, along with amy robach, filling in for meredith. >> thank you. >> i know my children would love this. >> a school in florida where there are no rules.
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kids come and go as they please and do homework if they want to. is that such a good idea? more on that coming up. the latest on assault allegations made against lindsay lohan by a staffer at the betty ford clinic. we'll talk to her attorney in a few minutes. a holiday treat for deserving moms to be who have no idea what's coming. it's at fort drum. it will be a great morning for those people. let's start with the personal online videos that have the typically outspoken head coach of the new york jets pretty silent. ron allen has that story. >> you don't have to put your feet in. you can leave them out. >> reporter: the videos have exploded across the internet. a woman in a car. a man, you can only hear his voice behind the video camera. it's all very playful. their conversation, all about her feet. >> do you mind if i touch them? >> reporter: there are more scenes of the woman alone, the focus always on her feet.
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>> it certainly sounds like what we're seeing here is a foot fetish. we all want to know what goes on behind closed doors, especially when it has to do with sexuality. we like the idea of catching someone when they don't know that they're being caught. >> reporter: the videos were revealed by dead spin, a sports blog. its editors say they came from youtube. a tipster told them the woman resembled this person, michelle ryan and the voice sounded a lot like her husband, rex ryan, the popular and colorful coach of the new york yes, sir football team. >> wow, they're really really soft. >> i've never seen anything like that. it was uncomfortable to watch. it didn't take a lot of due diligence on our part to put everything together. >> reporter: nbc news has not independently confirmed the ryans made the videos. it's front page news in new york. at his daily football conference wednesday, coach ryan was asked about the videos again and again. >> coach ryan, did you and your wife make the foot fetish video?
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>> this is a personal matter. i'm not going to discuss it. this is a personal matter. this is a personal matter. it's personal. it's a personal matter. >> reporter: ryan never denied the videos were him and his wife. >> i will get asked this question front ways, sideways, back ways, all day, it is a personal matter. a personal matter. >> reporter: this is not the first time a public figure's private life has gone viral. the cyber-world is often abus with video prominent people might have wanted to keep to themselves. >> whatever your habits are, keep them as private as possible. once they get public, they will get really public very quickly. >> reporter: the digital world's prying eyes are always watching. on these latest videos, the team is standing by the head coach, in a statement echoing ryan, this is a personal matter. >> my wife is beautiful.
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been married for 23 years. you know, we've -- she rocks. >> reporter: for today, ron allen, nbc news new york. we will switch gears now and get a check of the weather for stephanie abrams, in for al. steph. it's always fun to get a surprise, especially around christmas or the holidays. what are you telling mom? >> mom, we're getting married. >> is mom going to be happy? yes. >> and the sister, the flower girl. you're never too old to be a flower girl, right? >> never! >> a beautiful day for a wedding if you're getting married today, in the south, >> 37 at 241 or 42 degrees
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today. very windy, though. northwest flow at 15 to 20 amy, over to you. >> all right, stephanie. thank you. now, to the latest on those assault allegations made against lindsay lohan by a betty ford staffer. in a moment, we'll talk to her attorney. first, kristen welker has details. good morning. >> good morning to you. this has become a real case of t the -- she said she said blaming each other for going on the attack. >> dawn holland, tight-lipped as she left a palm springs doctor's
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office wednesday, her arm still bandaged after she left after a scuffle with lindsay lohan. earlier, she was speaking out and told tmz that earlier, lohan, a patient at the center went out drinking and missed curfew and got out of control when holland confronted her. >> she grabbed my wrist and snatched it down and twisted my arm and hand. i went to the emergency room and found i had a severe sprain to my arm and hand. >> reporter: the betty ford center fired holland saying she violated patient confidentiality and the attorney general's office was contacted. now, her lawyer is firing back calling the termination unlawful. when a patient attacks a caregiver, the patient waives a large part of their privacy. officials at the clinic declined
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comment but observers say holland's willingness to grant an interview right away raises questions about her credibility. >> i think it definitely makes dawn look bad. the whole thing is confidentiality. you can't talk about someone in rehab right now. that is a big no-no. regime team lohan is also lashing out, saying lohan feels she is the victim. she was out getting her hair done, completely sober and only missed curfew by a few minutes when she returned to an angry holland who pushed her. >> i did not touch the woman. i am not willing to risk my job over any patient. >> reporter: this is not the first time holland has been embroiled in accusations of assaulted. according to court documents, holland filed a restraining order against her husband last year saying he grabbed her and pushed her. but her husband makes the same claim, writing as she got out of bed, she hit me. for lohan, this latest incident could be a major setback.
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after three months of treatment, the 24-year-old was just two weeks away from getting out of rehab and starting a new life. >> everybody said she's a changed person, and then, bam, this happens. huge allegations that she hit a starv staffer. it's a big deal for her. >> police are still investigating this case, no charges filed at this point in time. lohan's parents say they stand wearily behind her and still expect her to be released from the center january 3rd. a amy. >> thank you. keith davidson is miss holland's attorney. good morning. >> good morning. >> does your client regret speaking out to tmz now that this is played out so publicly. >> i think she does regret it. she was caught off guard by the attention this incident garnered and she regrets a large part of what happened and the publicity that's been generated.
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>> you released a statement on wednesday on behalf of your client, dawn holland and said you were retained to investigate civil rights claims she has against the clinic surrounding her recent unlawful termination. what are those claims based on? >> based on a large part unlawful termination by the betty ford clinic. the suit is based -- the investigation is based, really, in the whistle-blower statute in california. this is really an attempt by betty ford to cover up the incident and prevent public disclosure of any sort of claim by either lindsay lohan or dawn holland. >> speaking of that, seau you state the clinic has made immoral and unethical requests of miss holland. what were those requests specifically? >> from the very outset of this incident, petty ford had really attacked my client, had ordered
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her not to speak to the police, had ordered her, once she did speak to the police, to change her story. this is all in an effort to protect their own image in this very competitive rehabilitation marketplace. given your client's statement of what happened that night. does she plan to sue lindsay lohan? >> absolutely not. she applauds miss lohan in her rehabilitation. it's not a perfect science and oftentimes it gets a bit ugh any. >> she doesn't hover any ill wills towards lindsay lohan given some of the rock lohan reportedly made about your client? >> no. i'm not so sure they were comments made by miss lohan. i've spoken to members of miss lohan's family and her father, michael. i can assure you this is an
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incident in the context of rehabilitation, is not uncommon. there's sometimes confrontational verbal, oftentimes physical. if this happened on the street corner, this would not gain any attention, there would be no charges filed. to a certain extent, there's almost an assumption of risk in these types of settings by patients and caregivers. my client, dawn holland applauds miss lohan and congratulates her efforts. she's seen firsthand what miss lohan has gone through. she herself is a recovering addict and she wants nothing more than miss lohan to get better, get well and heal herself. >> keith davidson, thanks so much. >> thank you. coming up next, does it promote creativity or chaos? the school with no teachers and no tests, right after this. [ male announcer ] it's here. the all-new chevy cruze. msn autos called it
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whoa! that leaves lots of pieces behind. that's why there's charmin ultra strong. than the ultra rippled brand, it's no wonder charmin ultra strong holds up better for a more dependable clean. fewer pieces left behind. business is looking better. it sure is. [ female announcer ] charmin ultra strong. enjoy the go. and for an extra-clean finish, try charmin freshmates. back now at 7:45, a new school in florida unlike any others, run not by adults but by the kids who go to there. we checked it out. good morning to you.
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>> reporter: good morning, matt. when you think of a traditional school, this comes to mind, desks where kids sit, teacher up front, maybe holding up a flashcard like this. what if you took all this away, got rid of the zerks adesks and boards and teachers, would it still be a place of learning? you decide. it's the school you may have wanted when you were a kid. no teachers, no curriculum, no homework. in south florida, the sunset school is in session. kids show up when they like, go home when they like. and the parents say, it's exactly what they want. >> what i feel like i'm doing by putting him here, he's becoming an individual. >> you're booking tradition. >> yeah. look at me.
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>> she has two daughters, heather and rio. >> when people say, it feels like something from the '60s, which it is and kind of a hippie dippy sort of thing. no disrespect, you're sitting here with the purple hair and everything's. do the puzzle pieces fit there? >> yeah. for sure. >> reporter: before you jump to conclusion -- >> what sold you on this? >> i had children, i had my daughter. >> reporter: consider who some of the parents are. >> i'm an engineer and graduated from mit. >> reporter: you worked at? >> ford and microsoft and boeing. >> reporter: all places where she says she saw high-tech jobs farmed out to places like india. >> i love it, yes, you do, you love butterflies. >> reporter: tomorrow's winners in then business world she believes is creative. >> you believe this is fostering that free spirit? >> definitely. definitely. i see it every day. >> these are copcorn? >> what?
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>> copcorn. >> do they smell? >> yep. smell like popcorn. >> popcorn. >> reporter: the philosophy, kids learn by discovery. >> what star was in the opera house? >> reporter: i have no idea. >> the wizard of oz. >> reporter: as we saw, that curiosity includes reading. at times, it's also chaos. what do you make of what they're doing? >> it seems to me like this is a bit of home schooling mixed with a little anarchy. >> reporter: education expert, hillary fears what could happen if they're never tested. >> if they're never judge and we don't know how they're doing, how do we measure their potential? >> reporter: there are two dozens of these schools and it's been around two decades and there are graduates. >> reporter: we found
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22-year-old grace miller juggling college studies and her own cleaning business. >> when i went into an unaditional experience, i figure out what i wanted to do, who i wanted to be and how to achieve that. >> reporter: school rules are set by democratic rule. >> i propose we don't pee in the garden. >> reporter: in this case, they voted to sentence the offender, 4-year-old, julian to cleanup and then all the others pitched in anyway. >> it's what will happen over time that will tell the story. >> reporter: for these kids' parents who know there are no do overs, this is an education for love. there are no tests, no grades, and after 12 years, no high school develops, the kids can get a go ahead if they take that test and s.a.t. and go to college, as you saw a student. interestingly, they do stick to that democratic model. they voted to let us come do
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this story. >> clearly, you won, kerry. thank you very much. we appreciate it. still ahead, a special holiday surprise for more than 100 military moms to be. first, these messages. seven years ago, i had this idea. to make baby food the way moms would. happybaby strives to make the best organic baby food. in a business like ours, personal connections are so important. we use our american express open gold card to further those connections. last year we took dozens of trips using membership rewards points to meet with the farmers that grow our sweet potatoes and merchants that sell our product. we've gone from being in 5 stores to 7,500. booming is using points to make connections that grow your business.
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♪ a blender for aunt sue ♪ head phones for uncle wayne ♪ pillow pets and hot wheels for my sister's kids in maine ♪ ♪ oh, walgreens has perfect gifts ♪ ♪ for all those on your list ♪ like a walgreens gift card ♪ for your daughter's teacher miss gilchrest ♪ [ female announcer ] find all your last minute gifts at walgreens like a sony ipod clock radio, axe bath set... hershey's chocolates and more. and we're open late. stay jolly with walgreens.
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[ female announcer ] keurig has over 200 varieties of gourmet coffee and tea to choose from. ♪ keurig is the way to brew fresh, delicious coffee in under a minute. way to brew. [ female announcer ] so with keurig, every cup tastes like it's brewed just for you. ♪ because it is. choose. brew. enjoy. keurig. earlier this morning, we talked to karen hernandez, a mother who lost everything in a mud slide outside california just before christmas. we're getting a lot of e-mail from viewers who want to help
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her and a lot of other families out west. we will post that on our website. >> it's nice people are being caring and generous during this holiday season. we appreciate that. coming up, a look at the biggest news makers of 2010 and some people who touched our lives, after your local news. ♪ it's that chocolate ♪ it's that whipped cream ♪ it's that caramel, and espresso you mix in ♪ ♪ i must be, i must be, i must be, i must be ♪ ♪ i must be dreamin' [ male announcer ] for the first time at mcdonald's -- your two favorite flavors together. new mccafé caramel mocha. well? what do you guys think? perfect. [ male announcer ] the simple joy of sweet harmony. ♪ like we told him? - i can't tell. - oh, honey. - he totally went to jared. female announcer: celebrate life's unforgettable moments with pandora, now at jared. all: aww! - they are so cute at that age.
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yeah, right now during sign then drive, you can take home a volkswagen for just your signature. really? that's great. yeah. plus, it includes scheduled carefree maintenance. huh. light's green. there you go. oh, you need a pen. i had one here just a second ago. who would take my pen?? [ male announcer ] it's amazing what you can do with a pen. sign then drive is back. for a limited time get any 2011 volkswagen for practically just your signature.
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>> live, local, latebreaking. this wbal-tv 11 news today in baltimore. >> good morning. i am stan stovall. time for another check of the morning commute stan stovall. > -- sarah caldwell. >> 95 and owings mills boulevard, an accident there and possible delays towards the beltway. in towson, watch for downed wires towards pennsylvania ave. significant delays on the beltway. j.f.x. looks good. we still have problems on
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southbound 95 and 175 due to an accident last night. southbound 295 and powder mill road, the ramp blocked with accident location southbound 95 and 175, it happened at 8:00 last night. a significant delays. the same goes for the harbor tunnel. >> temperatures in the 20's. today we are going to have a mix of sunshine. 37 to 42. winds are going to pick up out of the northwest. bluster conditions continuing overnight tonight. we're going to be seeing a high of about 40 tomorrow bridgette mostly sunny skies. chris is the forecast is increasing cloudiness -- this
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day forecast is increasing cloudiness throughout the day and we could see significant snow sunday and monday. >> check the bottom of your screen for updated news and traffic information. back at 8:25 with another live update.
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8:00 now on a thursday morning, the 23rd day of december, 2010. 32 degrees, right at the freezing level, here in mid-town manhattan, the tree shining brightly, lots of people in our plaza getting into the holiday spirit. warmer than the past few days, we're thankful for that and i'm sure they are. i am joined by amy robach filling in while meredith takes a little time off. good to have you here. >> thank you. always nice to be here. >> it has been a busy year, when
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you stop and look at the stories we have covered here. coming up in a few minutes, we'll look back at the major news stories, political headlines, natural disasters, some of the people that touched our lives this year, everything from celebrities to olympics. and the devastating earthquake in haiti. we will look back at the year 2010 in just a couple minutes. >> also ahead, a baby bonanza at fort drum at this hour, more than 100 women expecting and unfortunately many of their husbands are stationed overseas. we have a big surprise for all of them coming up. and speaking of children, we will take a look at some last minute holiday gifts for the children on your list, coming in at under $10. which is important. before we go further, let's go inside. carl quintilla has headlines as he fills in for ann. >> good morning. president obama is now in hawaii for his christmas vacation after congress gave him early political presents. wednesday, the lame duck senate
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ratified a nuclear arms treaty the president signed with russia in april and congress passed a scaled back health care bill for ground zero workers and the president signed a bill repealing the "don't ask, don't tell" policy for gay services members. a massive cleanup under way in california. in highland park mudslides and flooding damaged third homes and am track services suspended an the director of san diego's equal come stadium says the submerged field will be ready for tonight's bowl game between san diego. and giving a victory to incumbent republican senator, lisa macao ski, refusing to overturn the results. chapman led a double life in the u.s. before a cold war style spy swap has turned political activist, speaking wednesday at
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a rally for prime minister vladimir putin's party. putin himself is a former kgb spy. a new study finds obesity raises a driver's risk of dying in a car crash by as much as 56%. and eating local has been taken to a whole new extreme in china. subway stations there now have refrigerated vending machines that sell live hairy crabs, a local delicacy. i think i'll stick with the snickers, if you don't mind. it's now 8:03. to stephanie with the weather. are you going to have a whit >> we are going to see a mixture of sunshine and clouds. + three northwest winds expected at 15 to 20 mi
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>> amy, over to you. >> stephanie, thank you. coming up, people who made headlines in 2010. right after this. ♪
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wow! ♪ they're from my garden club, up north. [ female announcer ] this year, hallmark has all new ways to say it. well, there's the snow you wanted.
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♪ ♪ ♪ rolling fast down i-45. it's not until you're lost that you can be found. choose your path.
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pride. pizzazz. sass! [ laughter ] [ woman ] i'm feeling that! [ female announcer ] the special k challenge begins january 1st. free personalized plans at specialk.com. what will you gain when you lose? that lets you eat six times a day? yeah, baby! try the slim-fast 3-2-1 plan. 3 snacks, 2 shakes or meal bars, and 1 balanced meal. slim fast. who has time to slim slowly? our family-owned company makes daisy... with 100% natural farm-fresh cream. no artificial ingredients. no preservatives. and no added hormones. ♪ daisy, do-do a dollop
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♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] some people just know how to build things well. give you and your loved ones an expertly engineered mercedes-benz... ho ho ho! [ male announcer ] ...at the winter event going on now. and stay connected with three years of mbrace service complimentary. we are back now at 8:08 as "today" looks back at 2010 from the devastation in haiti to victory in vancouver and the push and pull of politics, one heck of a year. >> yes.
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a look back at the news and news makers in 2010, as we reported to you here on "today." >> where do you stand on that? >> november 2nd is coming! >> how do you know what you put out there? >> a look of champions. >> right now. >> will not be foresaken. >> when that last miner was pulled out -- >> good morning. destruction and despair, a 7.0 magnitude earthquake leads to devastation in a haiti. >> haiti is crying out for help and it can't come soon enough. >> reporter: not since a tsunami has there been a humanitarian crisis that needed the world's help, and this one in haiti. >> to the people of haiti, you will not be foresaken, you will not be forgotten.
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>> buildings on both sides have collapsed. >> i need help, i need help. >> there's not enough doctors to care for all the injured so parents are stepping in and taking care of their own children. nearly half of haiti's population are children, and they are really bearing the weight of the suffering here. >> patients continue to pour into clinics like this all over port-au-prince. >> done. done. >> you okay? >> no, i'm not. it's terrible. >> reporter: with an estimated 1.3 million people still living intent camps across the country, time is running out. >> what he said was george bush doesn't care about black people. >> saying he's a racist. >> i resent it, it's not true and one of the most disgusting
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moments of my presidency. >> what would you say to him if he would meet with you face to face. if he would? >> i don't need you guys to show the tape and pop my emotions. i don't need all the jazz. >> we'll get out in back. i'll do something else. >> all of a sudden, you're dumping him on me? so much a man can take. >> are you so glad to be removed from hit? >> it's nice to be out of the pressure cooker. >> can you guarantee in the wake of this withdrawal we will not see an explosion of sectarian violence? >> i can't guarantee anything but i'm willing to bet everything. >> this version of health care did not receive one republican vote. >> the republican party made a calculated decision that they would not support whatever we did. >> the job has aged him a little. you look at his hair. he gets grayer. there's a little more wear and tear on his face.
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he still looks good, mind you. >> he's cute. >> i'm not bad mouthing your husband. >> you are now a convicted felon. do you take any responsibilities with what's become of you. >> we will appeal that. >> why don't you think it's -- >> this project has created tremendous pain to people who paid the ultimate sacrifice. >> did you know you were near the border? >> we had no idea, no indication. >> how do you let go of the anger? >> it's unhealthy. >> you are forever now hitched to this? >> i am. >> why this place? why this issue? >> an awful lot of people that are in danger. what will you say to the next generation, that you stood by and did nothing? >> reporter: tent between's less than stellar economic outlook, new evidence of that on wall street. >> executives from wall street
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and goldman sachs blasted. >> you have less insight than a pit boss in las vegas. >> the president is expected to sign a sweeping set of financial reforms into law. >> why hasn't it resulted in jobs to this point? >> jobs jobs jobs. >> did your company drag its feet? >> no. i don't believe we did. >> the new orleans saints are super bowl champions. >> now, the debate raging over those plans to build a mosque near ground zero. >> they're going to burn those korans on saturday. >> an angry obama meets one-on-one in the office with stanley mcchrystal. >> i welcome debate among my teams but won't tolerate division. >> do you think you deserve a phone call from president obama? >> i think i do. >> ash clouds from iceland forced airports to shut down. >> it shows no sign of abating at this point.
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>> a suspect arrested overnight in the attempted attack on time square. >> terrorism in europe is not history. >> they were trying to blow up planes. the bombs were fully operational and nearly impossible to detect in cargo screening. the controversial new guidelines could make the wait at airports even longer. >> has this man put us at risk? >> do you plan to accelerate your plans to release further documents? >> elizabeth edwards passed away peacefully in her home. >> i don't know what the ultimate plan is but i do think when bad things happen you have the strength to face them. >> i want to be the last to say, mom, i really really love you more.
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let the games begin. >> this is for the gold. can he do it? he's got another gold medal! >> lindsey vonn reveals to us she has an injury. >> are you 50% right now? are you less? what would you say? >> i couldn't tell you. i fought through injuries before. it will be really hard. >> lindsey vonn is the gold medalist. >> apollo now trying to get to the podium. >> apolo anton ohno has just set history. >> i guess that label is amazing feeling. >> the skate of his life! >> the first american man to win
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olympic gold in 32 years. has it sunk in, olympic champion? >> it hasn't. what i'm really excited about is my performance and hopefully do my job and have my best skate in the most important moment of my life. >> i am deeply sorry for my irresponsible and selfish behavior. >> yet another tape reportedly of oscar winner, mel gibson. >> how dare you! >> lindsay lohan is heading to jail. >> you can't blame it all on the tabloids. she's made wrong choices. >> she's still paying the price. >> she allegedly went into a drunken rage and trashed his hotel room. >> my son is a -- you can do anything you want in life.
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>> now, they got it. >> vander sloop now wanted for the murder of another woman. >> the largest exchange of spy suspects between the u.s. and russia since the end of the cold war. the social event of the summer. >> matt's been giggling non-stop since the announcement of this engagement. >> we're excited. breaking news. emergency crews search for 11 workers missing after a powerful explosion and oil rig off the coast of louisiana. >> officials cannot engage what's called a blowout preventer in the next day or so, it could be months. >> leah knocks on my bathroom door, says, did you plug the hole yet, daddy. washing the oil along the score of the louisiana coast.
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>> the oil is everywhere. >> this is an example of some of the damage taken place as the oil rolls in. >> please help us. we need it now more than ever. >> we will make bp pay for the damage their negligence has cost. >> this is the time to spend more time in the gulf. never thought i would say this to a president, but kick some butt. >> they potentially had the best answers so i know whose ass to kick. >> static hill. >> bottom kill. >> federal officials have now declared the bp well in new mexico effectively dead. >> 33 workers in chile, trapped for 17 days, 2000 feet down, then all of a sudden, look at this. >> an incredible new video from inside the mine in chile. >> there were notes attached to it. we are all fine in shelter.
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three powerful drills and crews working 24-7 to build a rescue hole to the miners. >> this is day 60. >> they will reinforce the shaft down to where the miners are. >> a scene being played out in chile as one by one, the 33 trapped miners are brought to the surface. >> last man out. >> their 70 day underground ordeal finally over. >> i think for my part, i survived, thanks to god. he was always with us. always said, they felt god was watching over them. the was the 34th. a lot is riding on the special election being held today in massachusetts. >> the independent voice in massachusetts has spoken! >> what's next for the president
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and the democratic party? >> state of the union, state of the presidency. >> right now, i know there are many americans who aren't sure if they still believe we can change. >> what risk do the republicans run by being the party of no? >> may may very well reap the political benefit. >> the white house is saying democrats may have to go it alone on health care reform. >> speaker of the house, nanty pelosi, knows how to deliver the votes. >> the bill is passed. >> hell no, you can't! >> our next supreme court justice, elena kagan. >> the last american combat troops officially lead iraq. >> the last ever. >> we are the tea party. >> how's that hopey-changey stuff working out for you? >> palin's power. >> i'm not a witch.
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>> you gave them eight years to dig the hole, give us four years to get out. >> i'm exhausted of defending you. >> good morning. decision day 2010. >> we've come to take our government back! >> the bell that just rang isn't the end of the fight, the start of the next round. >> we hope president obama will now respect the will of the people, change course. >> i'm not recommending for every future president that they take a shellacking like i did last night. >> the key win on "don't ask, don't tell". >> an early christmas president on millions of americans who will not see a big tax increase. >> there'll be times we won't agree. we have to work through those times together. that's the major accomplishment. >> sometimes you forget all the things you talked about in 12 months. >> it's hard to believe all that happened in a year's time.
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>> all the drama with every news story, more intense than i can remember in recent years. >> we want to thank kyle and david, katie buckley and the entire graphices team for putting that piece together. you did a great job. we appreciate it. we're back right after this. [scraping] [piano keys banging] [scraping] [horns honking] with deposits in your engine, it can feel like something's holding your car back. let me guess, 16. [laughing] yeeah. that's why there's castrol gtx... with our most powerful deposit fighting ingredient ever. castrol gtx exceeds the toughest new industry standard. don't let deposits hold your car back. get castrol gtx. it's more than just oil. it's liquid engineering.
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get great savings on all the fixings at walmart. we'll match any store's price on groceries right at the register. and we take coupons too. add that to our everyday low prices, and you can make it a tasty holiday for everyone at walmart. and you can make it a tasty holiday for everyone [children screaming] [growl] i met my husband here. i got to know my grandkids here. we've discovered so much here together. but my doctor told me that during that time my high cholesterol was contributing to plaque buildup in my arteries. that's why i'm fighting my cholesterol... with crestor. along with diet, crestor does more than help manage cholesterol, when diet and exercise alone aren't enough. crestor is also proven to slow plaque buildup in arteries. crestor is not right for everyone, like people with liver disease, or women who are nursing, pregnant, or may become pregnant.
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simple blood tests will check for liver problems. tell your doctor about other medicines you are taking, or if you have muscle pain or weakness. that could be a sign of serious side effects. ask your doctor if crestor is right for you. i love it when we're here together. if you can't afford your medication, astrazeneca may be able to help. we get double miles on every purchase. so we earned a holiday trip to the big apple twice as fast! dinner! [ garth ] we get double miles every time we use our card.
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and since double miles add up fast, we can bring the whole gang! it's hard to beat double miles! i want a maze, a sword, a... oww! [ male announcer ] get the venture card from capital one and earn double miles on every purchase, every day. go to capitalone.com. i wonder what it could be?! what's in your wallet? and the deals are so great everyone's going. buzzsaw? buzz what? i'm dan now. we're getting the band back together, you in? i don't think, uh... you're not in. not in. [ male announcer ] for a limited time, get 0% apr financing on select new corollas, camrys & tundras. plus, every new toyota comes with toyota care, featuring a complimentary maintenance plan with roadside assistance. this legendary event only happens once a year.
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don't miss out on the amazing deals at toyotathon. hurry in today. just ahead, a special holiday surprise for deserving military moms to be. we'll meet >> live, local, latebreaking. this is wbal-tv 11 news today in baltimore. >> good morning. i am mindy basara. let's get a final check on the morning commute with sarah caldwell. >> let's point out the latest problem. northpoint road, a city line, use extra caution. problems at towson and baltimore avenue and pennsylvania ave. southbound 295, the on ramps for powder mill road remain blocked.
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another accident on defense highway coming into us. we will look at 50 in a moment. first, live view of traffic in the area of 95. another problem spot southbound, left shoulder old. the major leagues are getting by. ritchie highway, east and westbound, running smoothly. no problems at the bay bridge. >> we'll looking at temperatures between the low 30's about the area. wind chill is worse. a little bit gusty out of the north and west. the street, but when the cloudy. -- blustery but partly cloudy. overnight tonight, clear. low 20s. tomorrow, sunday and 40 degrees. for christmas itself, increasing clouds as the day progresses. we get a chance of seeing just a flurry or two. on sunday and monday, potential
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for a coastal storm either just barely affecting us or really, really affecting us. >> we will have another update at 8:55. try cortizone 10 intensive healing. the strongest itch relief medicine now has three vitamins and seven moisturizers. feel the heal.
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we are back, 8:30 on a thursday morning. 23rd day of december. this is a very happening place now. you're looking live at the north pole, kind of. and santa and the elves getting ready for the big night tomorrow night. a lot of people in the plaza hoping they're on santa's list.
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i'm matt lauer joined by a couple of people, one who's been naughty and one who's been nice. >> it's not working but it's okay. i'm matt lauer along with amy robach while meredith is off today and carl quintilla joins us as well, ann is on vacation, al is on vacation and meredith. i feel like the odd man out. coming up, saluting of military moms. >> we will head to fort drum in new york and meet the women doing the heavy lifting during their husband's deployment. we have a big surprise in store for all these moms. >> do you have resolutions for hitting the gym in the new year? we will talk about the hidden dangers about the local health club you might need to know about. also ahead, i love this
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show, "the singoff." we have the winners of this year's "singoff" in our suedio, called "committed" a gospel group from alabama here for a very special performance coming up. ♪ stephanie abrams is filling in for al. are you excited about your white christmas? >> very excited. >> what will you do different? >> lobster instead of turkey. >> you trade in the steak for the lobster. we'll see a white christmas, our predicted white christmas all the way down to the south potentially, even the atl. here's our forecast, before we get to christmas, christmas eve, right? we will see sunshine anywhere from the great >> 37 at 241 or 42 degrees today. very windy, though.
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northwest flow at 15 to 20 you might not have a white christmas in florida but a beachy forecast. that's not a bad trade-off, amy. thanks so much. coming up next, a big pur surprise with expectant military moms. first, "today" on nbc.
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back at 8:35, our special series, getting to the heart of christmas. look at people stationed in fort drum army base in new york
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state. among the crowds, more than 100 pregnant military wives. we're going to talk to some of them in a moment. first, what life is like for our nation's military moms. they are the military moms at fort drum, united through their husband's military service. >> it's a sisterhood. >> seven months pregnant, her hub, jake, to be home for christmas week. >> it is bittersweet. he will be home for christmas but not the baby. >> and jessica, her husband was deployed december 7th. >> it seems like a lot longer than two weeks but we're doing okay. >> this is josie with 3-month-old carson. he was serving in afghanistan when he was born. >> he cut the cord when the other child was born and there will always be a strong bond.
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>> 7-month-old peyton and 3-year-old ethan. her husband, eric, wasn't able to be home for peyton's birth. >> when it finally happened, i remember calling my neighbor and telling her it was time. >> eric was deployed last january. she has been hoping for a christmas miracle. >> i want my husband to be home for christmas. >> fort drum has nearly 20,000 soldiers, 14,000 families. soldiers are constantly leaving, preparing to leave, or returning home, only to do it all over again. >> deployment, the guys have their battle ready and here at home we have our battle ready. >> cindy burleson has been married 21 years and the mom of 17-year-old matt and 15-year-old beth. her husband is currently in afghanistan. this is his 11th deployment. >> i wouldn't say it's easier or harder, it's just different. now that they listen to the news, they're a little more
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aware and it concerns them a little bit more. >> the moms we met try to stay positive. but sometimes it's all too much to handle. >> i can't talk about it. >> there's a lot of good, too. the day-by-day thing really helps. you don't try to think too far in the future. >> all of them dream of the day when their soldiers come home. ♪ ♪ >> i missed you! >> the only thing i wanted for christmas and i got it.
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>> some special people, staff sergeant mar jor rum returned home with his wife and their kids. and due to be deployed in march, his wife darcy is seven months pregnant and elizabeth is due today. good morning to you. happy holidays. >> good morning. >> staff sergeant marjorum. you just returned home after serving nearly a year in afghanistan. welcome home and thank you for your service. >> thank you, sir. >> you're holding peyton in your arms there. she is seven months old. you weren't able to be there when she was born. what's it like to hold your little girl? >> it's great. she's gotten so big in the six months since i've seen her. >> have you turned her into daddy's little girl yet?
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>> not quite, but i'm working on it. >> deborah, i know your christmas wish was to have your husband home. what are your emotions like now? >> oh, i'm beyond emotions. it's the best thing that our families and i could have asked for. >> you have ethan there as well. is ethan 3, is that right? ethan's 3? >> yes. ethan's 3. >> it's great for him to have his dad home. sergeant, i know you're very thankful for all the work that your wife does while you're away. she's a rock in your family, isn't she? >> i believe she's got the toughest job. >> darcy, let me move on to you. you are expected to give birth in march and i understand, almost at the exact same time that your husband, jake, is expected to be deployed. can you talk to me a little bit about what your thoughts are about that? >> it's bittersweet most of the
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time, as a military spouse, but it's part of the job. hopefully he will be here for it, otherwise, i have a crew of women to be there for me and n tons of family willing to come out. it's a big support network. snow you really do get a lot of support from the other moms and non-moms. it is a family there at fort drum, isn't it? >> absolutely. you couldn't be in a better place. >> elizabeth, let me turn to you because i have to do this in a hurry. you are due today, is that right? >> yes, i am. that's correct. >> how are you feeling? >> i'm feeling pretty good. to go any time now, but i'm actually feeling pretty good. ready to meet my little man. >> your husband, second lieutenant christopher mays is with the 10th combat aviation brigade. he is going to be deployed shortly after you give birth. talk to me a little bit about
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your emotions, so much happening in your life, so much uncertainty. >> you know, like darcy, it's very bittersweet. we're very thankful he would be able to stay here for the birth. we didn't think that would happen. we're happy to have him for christmas and the next chapter will start after that and he'll leave and we'll go from there. >> you'll take it one day at a time. elizabeth, since you are due today, and you said in your own words, it could happen any time, we want to move on here. we have something special, so many military moms in that room at fort drum, so many expectant moms. what we would like to do, we would like to throw you all a surprise baby shower. without further ado, we have great people from wal-mart and they will do the honors. let's get it started. [ cheers and applause ]
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>> i want to give you a sense for what you're all going to be getting. this is your day, you're each getting your very own baby stroller, filled to the brim with baby supplies, everything from diapers to onescies, to bottles and pacifiers, on top of that, every family there will get a digital camera so you can capture these milestone moments while dad is away. we have one of these sets for every person in that room. that's not all. there are books, toys, a car seat, diaper bags for mom. i have cindy, the wal-mart store manager in evans mills. cindy, can you hearme? cindy, can you hear me? >> i can hear you now. >> talk to me a little bit about what you're giving to these fine families. >> there's nothing more important at the holidays than being able to be with your family.
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i will tell you, at wal-mart, we're so fortunate to be part of the 10th mountain division at fort drum, new york and so excited we have been invited to throw this surprise baby shower today, one of the best experiences we have ever had and we are very very thankful. >> i want to mention, you have stockings for each of their spouses, many serving in afghanistan. there are a lot of very important things in those stockings as well. this is great. we really truly appreciate what you've done for these families at fort drum. [ cheers and applause ] >> yes. we built some stockings for the dads as well, while they're deployed. we have great books and reading material, a digital camera. we have a lot of supplies, some electronics and things to entertain the dads. also so they can stay in touch while they're overseas.
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they'll be able to send pictures back home. it's so critically important for us, because the soldiers are deployed for so many months. it's a long time. they'll be able to stay in touch. >> cindy, thank you so much. thanks to all the people at wal-mart and non-profit group operation shower that helps women like this everyday and thanks to the military families at fort drum and around the world. we wish you all a very merry christmas. we'll be back in a moment. this is "today" on nbc. chicken in need of cheering up ?
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[ female announcer ] fun. easy. [ child ] wow. [ female announcer ] at pillsbury.com. this morning, mike leonard has a touching story on one little girl who made a big difference in her too short life. ♪ ♪ >> reporter: it was the performance of a lifetime. >> there wasn't a dry eye in the place. >> reporter: a silent night solo
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at a grammar school christmas pageant. >> if you were to watch it -- >> reporter: the setting, sacred heart church in illinois. the reaction, understandably emotional because the little girl singing, 9-year-old cloy, was in the late stages of battle of cancer, a battle she lost later. what has happened in the meantime has taken a sorrow effectively chapter and turned it into a story of kindness and hope. >> she was about love and laughter and making people feel good. this story absolutely should not have people feel sad about the lost of chloe. it should make people feel very happy about the love she wanted to share. >> the inspiration chloe is giving people, she's living on in that. i think that is amazing. i think it is uplifting.
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>> reporter: to leave a mark, to make a difference. >> she taught a lot of people a lesson. >> reporter: to use what little time one has for the betterment of humanity. snow she thought of others first all the time, in everything she did. she was a gift. we talked about that often. where did she come from? >> reporter: this young child with a passion for giving. >> chloe was naturally kind. >> reporter: this little girl always offering help in her own small way. >> if you do one small thing everyday, you're helping a lot of people. >> reporter: inspiring them as well. at sacred heart school, children have been moved to emulate and celebrate those small random acts of kindness that defined chloe, their former classmate and fellow student. >> it's the anonymity that makes it special. >> reporter: a website foundation called chloe'screw follows that protocol for the distribution of food, clothing and school supplies and other
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goods for those in need. an ongoing program of very do-able yet very meaningful charitable acts prompted by a big hearted little girl who kept smiling and singing through illness and pain, most notably at her school's christmas celebration when nobody believed she was capable of leaving her sickbed, nobody except for chloe. >> she went to the church that night and i know i'm her father and it might be a little one of sided but it was the most beautiful stunning rendition of "silent night" that i'll ever hear. ♪ ♪ >> she's been an inspiration to all these kids and everybody that she touched. >> reporter: and will continue to touch. ♪ >> reporter: for today, mike leonard, nbc news, illinois.
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>> for more on chloe's crew, you can head to our website. up next, the winners of the singoff. first, this is "today" on nbc.
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in case you haven't heard, after four intense nights of competition, the alabama gospel group wins the singoff "committed." guys, good morning. congratulations. >> congratulations! >> i hear huntsville, alabama is going just a little crazy over this. what's the response back home? >> it's been terrific. they've been very supported and we appreciate the love and support we've been getting. >> how did you come up with the idea to take gospel and try to make it mainstream? >> we had to use what we have, you know, with the gospel and take six vibes we've been prone to do and just, our arranger is amazing. >> he do you do have a recordin contract, right? the sky's the limit?
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excited what it brings for you? >> extremely excited. we're ready to work hard and will hit the studio and keep going. >> what will you sing this morning? >> we're singing something from the singoff, harmony album. like a med dley for "joy to the world." need two more people? we'll get out of here. "committed." ♪ angels we have heard on high sweetly singing through the night ♪ ♪ and the mountain in reply echoing their brave delight ♪ ♪ gloria in excelsius deo.
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gloria in excelsius deo ♪ ♪ joy to the world the lord is come ♪ ♪ let earth receive her king that every heart and heaven and nature sing and heaven and
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nature sing ♪ ♪ let heaven and heaven and >> live, local, latebreaking. this is wbal-tv 11 news today in baltimore. >> good morning. i am mindy basara. baltimore city police are investigating a shooting in north baltimore. police were called to the scene of the 2900 block of matthews street just before 9:30 last night. they found unidentified man with a gunshot wound. homicide detectives are handling the case investigators have not said if the arrests were made.
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>> let's take a look at the
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forecast with sandra shaw. >> partly cloudy skies, temperatures range and the upper thirties to low 40's. the wins will be playing a role. up to 25 miles per hour. that will make a wind chill factor tonight. mostly clear, but blustery. those conditions will continue through friday. christmas day, increasing clouds. sunday and monday, a good chance of seeing a storm. >> another weather update at 9:25.
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