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Giuliani's attempt to flip the impeachment script, Christmas for kids affected by the opioid crisis and Eddie Murphy's return to SNL: The Morning Rundown

Former NY mayor has been cryptically teasing what he calls “new proof” buttressing the charges against former Vice President Joe Biden.
Image: Trump Attorney Rudy Giuliani addresses the crowd at the Turning Point USA Student Action Summit
Rudy Giuliani teasing what he calls “new proof” buttressing the charges against former Vice President Joe Biden. Saul Martinez / Getty Images

Good morning, NBC News readers.

President Trump’s personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, is attempting to flip the script on Trump's impeachment.

Meanwhile, kids affected by the opioid crisis open up ahead of Christmas, and Eddie Murphy returns to SNL after 35 years. Here's what we're watching this morning.


Inside Giuliani's new push to flip the script on Trump's impeachment

As President Donald Trump awaits trial in the Senate, his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani has been attempting to flip the script by contending that the Democrats are guilty of obstruction and collusion with a foreign power to influence elections.

Cryptically teasing what he calls “new proof” buttressing the charges against former Vice President Joe Biden and purported corruption during the Obama administration, the former New York City mayor has been intentionally vague.

“All in good time,” Giuliani — himself under federal investigation for his Ukraine activities — told NBC News via text message when asked when he’d produce the evidence.

It comes as newly released emails regarding Ukraine defense aid held by the White House show that a request to withhold funds came less than two hours after President Donald Trump's July phone call with his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelenskiy.

That call has served as the backbone of the impeachment proceedings against him.


Christmas for kids affected by the opioid crisis

It will be a grim Christmas for the kids at Camp Mariposa who have been “cheated" out their childhood by West Virginia’s crisis.

These are the boys and girls whose parents were stolen from them, whose families were splintered by the plague of opioid addiction that has been ravaging the United States for several years.

It has hit their home state of West Virginia especially hard. They are, the “cheated" children, camp director Lea Morgan told NBC News.

“They feel cheated that they didn’t get to be a child, that they didn’t have years of being carefree,” Morgan told NBC News.

However, at Camp Mariposa which is part of a national mentoring and addiction prevention program that’s free for kids ages 9 and up, campgoers take part in peer support sessions where they talk openly about living with family members struggling with addiction, about suicide and dangers of drugs and alcohol.


Trolls turned 911 into a weapon. Now cops are fighting back

Anyone with a grudge and someone’s address can make a “swatting” call —a false report of extreme violence at a residence to prompt an overwhelming response by law enforcement.

But what was once a niche prank played by gamers has become a favored means of terrorizing famous, controversial and vulnerable people.

It has also become more organized in recent years, with online forums and chat rooms dedicated to targeted attacks on individuals, including YouTube personalities, tech executives, activists, authors and journalists.

NBC News’ looks at how law enforcement agencies are fighting back.


Saudi Arabia sentences 5 to death for Jamal Khashoggi's killing

Five people have been sentenced to death in Saudi Arabia for “committing and directly participating” in the murder of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Three others have been sentenced to a collective total of 24 years in prison for “their role in covering up” the killing, Saudi Arabia’s public prosecutor said in a statement posted by the Saudi foreign ministry on Twitter.

Khashoggi, a permanent U.S. resident and a vocal critic of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, was murdered and dismembered Oct. 2, 2018, in the Saudi consulate in the Turkish city of Istanbul.


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One fun thing

Eddie Murphy brought back three of his most popular characters in his much-anticipated return to "Saturday Night Live" after 35 years.

Mr. Robinson, a spoof of "Mr Rogers Neighborhood," and Buckwheat of the "Little Rascals" made an appearance and his grouchy, green Gumby barged onto the satirical news segment "Weekend Update."

In his opening monologue, Murphy described his expansive family and the birth of his 10th child. “If you would’ve told me 30 years ago that I would be this boring, stay at home house dad and Bill Cosby would be in jail — even I wouldn't have taken that bet.”

Cosby was sentenced last year to three to 10 years in prison after being convicted of drugging and assaulting Andrea Constand.

His publicist Andrew Wyatt hit back on Instagram Sunday, calling Murphy a “Hollywood slave.”


Thanks for reading the Morning Rundown.

I'm filling in for Petra Cahill today so if you have any comments — likes, dislikes — drop me an email at: henry.austin@nbcuni.com If you're a fan, please forward it to your family and friends. They can sign-up here.

Thanks, Henry Austin