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Welcome to CNN Radio News Day.
* Russian President Vladimir Putin says he's yet to see any reason why he shouldn't sign a bill that would prevent American families from adopting Russian children. On Wednesday, Russia's Upper House of Parliament unanimously approved the measure. It's widely seen as retaliation for a new U.S. law that singles out Russians accused of human rights violations. American Lee Allen and his wife are parents to two 13-year-old boys, adopted as babies from Russia. He says he can't fathom how tough this must be on kids who have already met their prospective parents:
"They start to dream. They dream of a family. They dream of a home. They dream of a mom and dad and a brother and a sister. I can't even imagine telling a child that uh, they need to, they need to stop that dream."
* We are just five days away now from going over the fiscal cliff. President Obama cut short his Christmas vacation in Hawaii, arriving back in Washington today to work on a deal. The Senate is also back in session trying to come up with a plan to avoid those severe spending cuts and tax hikes set to kick in on January 1st. The House won't return to Capitol Hill until Sunday. CNN's Lisa Desjardins today there was talk of a possible scaled-back deal from Democrats:
"This is not the huge deal we were once talking about. Instead, this is kind of a bare-bones just get by kind of deal."
* Many families in New York and New Jersey spent the holidays away from homes that were destroyed by Hurricane Sandy. The rebuilding is a slow and difficult process. While some volunteers continue to help homeowners tear out waterlogged walls and clean away mold, others are repairing memories. Kelly Lee founded CARE for Sandy. CARE stands for Cherished Albums Restoration Effort:
"We are digitally repairing these photographs and restoring them to make them look like new so that these negative memories from this unfortunate day are turned into happy ones again."