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December 29th, 2012
10:06 AM ET

Vote: Most memorable New Year's Eve moment

Hilarious? Check. Surprising? Check. Outrageous? Check. If you’ve been watching Anderson Cooper and Kathy Griffin co-host CNN’s New Year’s Eve coverage together for the past five years, you’ve seen all that and much, much more. So, as you can imagine, it was no easy task to choose the absolute single best New Year's Eve moment. We couldn't pick one so we want you to do it for us. We narrowed it down to five and now we’re putting the final decision in your hands.

Vote for your favorite memory and join us on New Year's Eve! We'll reveal and air the winner in this year's show at 10 p.m. ET.

Want to submit a write-in entry? Tell us in a comment. And remember to tweet your messages to Anderson and Kathy or your wishes for the new year using #cnnnye.

Anderson Cooper and Kathy Griffin on NYE

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December 29th, 2012
09:57 AM ET

Anderson and Kathy prepare for NYE show

Anderson Cooper talks about what's in store for CNN's New Year's Eve show, while his co-host seems less than impressed.

Anderson and Kathy Griffin are back for their sixth year hosting the special coverage on Dec. 31 at 10 p.m. ET

Read more about this year's New Year's Eve show and tweet your messages, resolutions, and greetings using #cnnnye for a chance to see them on air.

December 29th, 2012
09:14 AM ET

Letters to the President #1440: 'Blame it on politics'

Reporter's Note: President Obama is probably busy taking care of some last bits of business before the year runs out. So am I.

Dear Mr. President,

You made a comment last night as you talked about the fiscal cliff. You said something along the lines of, “People wonder why everything in this town gets put off until the last minute.” Again, those were not your exact words, but that was the general idea. You then went on to say, as presidents often do, that the only thing preventing action is people letting politics get in the way.

Not to be impatient or snarky about it, but you do realize that that is what this town is all about, don’t you?

The only reason you are in office is politics. The only reason your party holds the power it does in this town is politics. The only way that anything ever gets done here is through politics. Yes, it is terribly messy, slow, and at times (like, oh say, for the past several years) dysfunctional. But that’s the way it works.

Sometimes I think this is what your critics mean when they say you are a better candidate than office holder, that you know how to run a good race, but you’re not so skilled at running government. I suspect they are homing in on this disdain you have for politics itself.

Citizens can be dismissive of politics. Indeed, it’s one of our favorite sports. But I don’t think politicians can. If the politics of the nation are not working, no president can afford to stand sneering on the sidelines pretending that situation is not about him, because it almost always is. You can blame the opposition, sure, and the polls may even tell you that voters agree. But in the end, if you don’t get a deal, that failure will come on your watch, and historians will almost certainly say eventually that a fundamental reason was your inability to master the politics of the situation.

You are not now, nor will you likely ever again be a candidate for elected office. You are in the business of politics. This is your craft. There is no one more political in the nation than the President of the United States, and your ability to embrace and excel at politics, especially in your second term, will determine whether you are remembered as a great campaigner…or a great leader.

Best of luck.

Regards,
Tom

December 29th, 2012
08:04 AM ET

Aronson: Don't give up hope of adopting

International adoption expert Dr. Jane Aronson has seen the consequences of politics interfering with adoptions across borders before.

Like the law signed Friday by Russian President Vladimir Putin that prohibits families in the U.S. from adopting in Russia, similar measures in the past have destroyed orphans' chances at finding a home. "At any one point there have been moratorium, repeatedly," says Aronson.

Her message to parents is one of determination. "There is never a reason to give up hope," she tells CNN's Randi Kaye. Over the course of decades of work, Aronson has seen families parent from a distance and maintain a relationship despite the complications of international adoption restrictions.

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Filed under: Adoption • Russia
December 29th, 2012
06:30 AM ET

Couple devastated by Russian adoption ban

Robert and Kim Summers have a crib by their bed, a stroller waiting in their dining room, and clothes for a baby boy who may not be permitted to come home to them.

The couple has visited Preston in Russia and they felt a connection. Kim Summers says seeing him was "the most joyful day" in her life since her wedding day.

They were eager to welcome a baby into their family after trying unsuccessfully to have their own child.  But Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law that prohibits the adoption of Russian children by people in the U.S.

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Filed under: Adoption • Russia
December 29th, 2012
02:00 AM ET

KTH: No deal days before fiscal cliff deadline

Three days before 2012 ends, the president and House and Senate leaders meet to negotiate on a last-minute agreement. They're scrambling to meet a deadline they created – we're Keeping Them Honest.

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Filed under: Congress • Economy • Fiscal Cliff • Keeping Them Honest • President Obama • Taxes