tv The Situation Room CNN June 15, 2012 1:00pm-3:00pm PDT
studio. too cool. by the way, quick reminder as always pop that up in a couple stories and interviews on the brooke blog. go to cnn.com/brooke. i always love hearing from you. i tweet during my two hours during the show. send me tweets. i always welcome the comments. meantime, that's it for me. thanks so much for watching. i'm brooke baldwin at the cnn world headquarters. now to wolf blitzer and "the situation room" which begins right now. brooke, thanks very, very much. happening now. >> effective immediately, the department of homeland security is taking steps to lift the shadow of deportation from these young people. >> president obama announces sweeping change in immigration policy lifting the threat of deportation for hundreds of thousands of young illegal immigrants. i'll talk about the new policy this hour with the woman in charge of implementing it, the homeland security secretary, janet napolitano.
she answers critics who say the announcement wreaks of politics. plus, details of a very rare breach of white house protocol during the president's announcement. we now know who the reporter is who interrupted and visibly irked the president of the united states. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." less than five months before election day a dramatic and controversial change in immigration policy by the obama administration. it announced today it will stop deporting young illegal immigrants who were brought to the united states as children if they meet certain requirements. among the requirements, the person cannot be more than 30 years old and must have entered the united states before age 16 and lived in the country for at least five years.
they must also be in school or have graduated or be a u.s. military or coast guard veteran. and they cannot have any felonies on their record and cannot be deemed to pose a threat to the united states. it's a move that's expected to impact hundreds of thousands of people. but it's also steep in election year politics. some republicans are calling it flat out amnesty for illegal immigrants. our white house correspondent, brianna keilar is beginning our coverage this hour. aimed at a very important voting block to be sure. >> that's right, wolf. the timing here no coincidence. this is aimed at hispanic voters. a block president obama needs some help from. 67% of hispanic voters who cast their ballots in 2008 did so for president obama. just 31% for john mccain. and as a candidate, president obama said he would tackle immigration reform. well, it's a promise he did not make good on. and with an eye to november, a number of his hispanic
supporters have been pressuring him to do more. president obama made an unexpected trip to the rose garden to highlight his administration's announcement that it would buy time for young illegal immigrants facing the possibility of deportation. >> these are young people who study in our schools, they play in our neighborhoods. they're friends with our kids. they pledge allegiance to our flag. they are americans in their heart, in their minds in every single way but one, on paper. >> as the president was halfway through his remarks, a reporter with "the daily caller" interrupted him, asking the president what the change means for american workers. >> excuse me, sir. it's not time for questions, sir. not while i'm speaking. >> president obama continued his remarks but came back to the man. >> and the answer to y
question, sir, and the next time i prefer you let me finish my statements before y that question, is this is the right thing to do for the american people. i didn't ask for an argument. i'm answering your question. >> now, wolf, as you can imagine that garnered a whole lot of attention. neil monroe through "the daily caller" put out a statement saying that it was basically an accident. he was trying to time his remarks for when the president was wrapping up. i did ask monroe right after the remarks why he did it. what he said to me is because he need today ask questions that you all, meaning the white house press corp, wouldn't ask. i was two people over from him and from what i could tell no one thought the president was wrapping up. i think it was deliberate it's fair to say. >> did he apologize for so rudely interrupting the president of the united states in the rose garden? >> no. he didn't. he said in his statement it was an accident. and his employers, the founders of "the daily caller" are standing by him and his
question. >> did tucker carlson and "the daily caller" apologize? >> no. >> all right. more on this story coming up. standby thanks very much. the new immigration policy mimics some provisions of the democrats dream act which failed to win enough republican support to pass congress. so what are lawmakers saying about this brand new obama administration policy? cnn's athee na jones joining us now. what are you hearing where you are? >> wolf, reaction from members of congress has been swift today as you can imagine. democrats are celebrating this announcement. but republicans are blasting the move by the obama administration and questioning the president's authority to make it. >> mr. senator -- >> senate minority leader mitch mcconnell refused to answer questions about the obama administration's new immigration policy. but the reaction from other congressional republicans was strong. texas congressman lamar smith,
chairman of the house judiciary committee, calls the move an amnesty that would encourage fraud and illegal activity. >> i think the american people are getting tired of this president picking and choosing what laws to enforce. that's not the democratic way. maybe you can do that in a dictatorship, or maybe another country. but this is a president who swore to uphold the amendments of the constitution of the united states. >> some tweeting president obama avoids the hard work of fixing an immigration system which is broken and fractured on numerous fronts. republicans say the president is bypassing congress, which has failed to pass dream act legislation that would give undocumented immigrants brought to america illegally by their parents a path of citizenship if they meet certain criteria. florida senator marco rubio, who has been working saying this move is a short-term answer to a long-term problem. meanwhile, democrats like dream act co-sponsor, senator dick
durbin, are applauding the administration's move. rtanpost fo. that this is a >> now, wolf, we know that republicans are questioning whether president obama has the legal authority to do this. so what can that do? well, congressman smith told us that congress could try to cut off money for this program to be implemented or reduce a resolution disagreeing with the president or even file a lawsuit and try to take the president to court for not upholding the law. but he also acknowledged to us he thinks this will ultimately all play out in the court of public opinion. >> he's probably right on that. it will play out in the court of public opinion over the next four and a half months. athena, thanks very much. >> thanks. we're finally getting some reaction from mitt romney, the republican presidential candidate. jim acosta's in new hampshire with him. i take it that the republican candidate has just responded to this administration's shift in
policy? >> that's right, wolf. mitt romney just walked off of his campaign bus for a few moments to address this change of policy over at the white house. he didn't take any questions from reporters, but he basically came out and said he agreed with marco rubio's statement on this issue, which is that marco rubio understands this is going to cause relief to a lot of those illegal immigrants caught up in the situation of being young in this country perhaps through no fault of their own. but marco rubio also said in that statement that he put out earlier today that he thinks that the president is ignoring the constitution and making it more difficult to pass comprehensive immigration reform and to crackdown on illegal immigration. here's what mitt romney had to say just a few moments ago. >> i believe the status of young people who come here through no fault of their own is an important matter to be considered and should be solved on a long-term basis so they know what their future would be in this country. i think the action that the president took today makes it more difficult to reach that
long-term solution because an executive order of course is just a short-term matter. it could be reversed by subsequent presidents. i would like to see legislation that deals with this issue. and i happen to agree with marco rubio as he will consider this issue. he said this is an important matter. we have to find a long-term solution. but the president's action makes reaching a long-term solution more difficult. if i'm president, we'll do our very best to have that kind of long-term solution that provides certainty and clarity for the people who come into this country through no fault of their own by virtue of an act of their parents. thank you. >> now, wolf, i will tell you that reporters who were gathered there for romney's statement, including myself, we all tried to ask mitt romney would you reverse the policy that the president announced today, and he did not answer that question. he climbed back on his bus and was off to pennsylvania. and i have to tell you, wolf, all of this comes -- this announcement from the white house comes as mitt romney was launching a carefully crafted
pretty well-financed, the stage crafting was impressive, six-state bus tour going through a number of battleground states between now and the early part of next week. and this caught the romney campaign by surprise. the former governor of massachusetts came out and really was taking some hard swings at the president on the economy on the speech that he gave yesterday. but really a lot of that's getting drowned out by what the white house did today. i talked to a romney advisor who thinks all of this is political and a pivot on the part of the president to get away from some of those bad economic numbers that have been coming out and some of the statements the president's made on this issue in the last several weeks. wolf. >> it's interesting. he cited marco rubio, the republican senator from florida. his statement very much -- i'm looking at the statement marco rubio put out. very similar with one potential significant change. marco rubio, as you pointed out said that the president by this decision today was ignoring the constitution. i didn't hear mitt romney say anything about the constitution.
did you? >> he didn't say anything about ignoring the constitution. so you're right. there is sort of a difference there. but it was largely, i think, supportive of what marco rubio had to say earlier today. and what's very interesting about that is if you look at marco rubio's statement, it is somewhat supportive of what the president did. marco rubio's statement says that he basically understands that this will come as a relief to a lot of undocumented people who are in this country right now. and so romney is echoing that statement. keep in mind, wolf, this is a republican candidate who during the primaries took a very hardline stance on immigration. he said he would veto the dream act. he said undocumented people in this country needed to self-deport and so on. so, you know, needless to say the democrats are already starting to make some comments on all of this. the obama campaign put out a statement just a little while ago saying that they anticipate that mitt romney will be making what they call an etch-a-sketch
on this issue. i think we'll be hearing about this over the next several days, wolf. >> jim acosta, thanks very much. our chief political correspondent host of "state of the union." what did you think of that romney reaction? >> i don't think it's all that surprising. i sort of anticipated once i saw rubio's statement. they talk. they've been -- marco rubio, when he first started his version of the dream act, i spoke with him at that point when he's beginning to put together the structure of it. i asked him about mitt romney. i recall him saying i want to talk to him about it. and a lot of people saw rubio's attempt to kind of come up with the dream act of his own for republicans as a way to kind of hand a lifeline to mitt romney when he became the nominee. so, you know, it doesn't surprise me at all. and also i think if you look at the independent vote and you see how favorable they feel at least emotionally about those who are in the plight of an illegal immigrant and especially a child
brought over here, this certainly is one of those things where it's not just about the latino vote. it's about the swing vote. they don't like harsh judgments on people. so it's for just both those voting groups. >> yeah, no, romney's statement we just heard the whole thing. much more moderate that some of the earlier statements we heard from other republicans like chuck grassly, for example, when they were accusing the president of amnesty and breaking the constitution. steve king, the republican from iowa saying there's got to be a lawsuit and all this. he was much more tempered. it did take him about five hours to come up with this statement. >> remember, we also heard this week he'd spoken to speaker boehner, no doubt spoken to mitch mcconnell. and they want to have some sort of coordination here at least in the leadership. so i'm sure there are a lot of phone calls that went back and forth particularly. and obviously i think they were taken with marco rubio thing. it's going to be about process, not about the end result. >> yeah. let's not forget that mitt romney now is the leader of the republican party for all
practical purposes. candy will have more sunday morning on "state of the union." 9:00 a.m. eastern and noon eastern as well. we have much more on this story. coming up i'm going to talk about the new policy with the woman in charge of actually implementing it, the homeland security secretary, janet napolitano. she'll join us. is her agency ready for the massive amount of work coming up in the days and weeks to come? and the news had latinos in some cities pouring into the streets in celebration. and senator john mccain actually goes after one of mitt romney's biggest financial supporters. that and much more coming up in our strategy session. you see us, at the start of the day. on the company phone list that's a few names longer. you see us bank on busier highways. on once empty fields.
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just dpot a got a statement in from rick santorum. let me read the first sentence. he goes after the president on this immigration shift. today president obama blat tantly ignored our constitution, the role of congress in making laws and the separation of powers. he showed us all he believes he is above the constitution and the law on health care, marriage, religious freedom and now immigration. very angry statement. much tougher than mitt romney's statement. that's just part of it. it goes on and on. latinos certainly are the single largest group impacted by the new obama administration policy blocking deportation of some young illegal immigrants who were brought to the united states as children. lisa sylvester's here. she's getting reaction from the latino community.
lisa, what so far based on what you've seen has been the reaction? >> well, wolf, first off as you have mentioned there is a lot of anger and outrage among conservatives across the country with the president's announcement. but for many in the latino community, the response is the exact opposite. they are simply overjoyed. volunteers at the advocacy started making signs, preparations for a rally outside the white house. these signs will read. >> one small step for me, another poster will say one giant leap for my people. >> the news that president obama will stop deporting many young people living in the country illegally has him overjoyed. he arrived illegally in the u.s. from el salvador when he was 5. >> you see your friends going onto college and kind of get that envious if only i was born here or something. my first thoughts were joining
the military. but the first thing they told me, are you legal, do you have a green card? i was like, no. kind of brought me down. >> the announcement has given a new charge to the latino community. they've been pressing washington lawmakers to pass the dream act that would provide a pathway to citizenship or permanent residency to students living in the country illegally. opponents have called that amnesty. and the dream act has stalled in congress. for ricky compost, the president's announcement moves them closer to their goal. >> i didn't know it was going to be a day after my birthday. and it will be a birthday present for me. i'm so excited. >> they head to the white house chanting "yes, we can." with a clear message for the white house. that message of gratitude.
now ricky wants to be a doctor. sal says he would like to have a career in law enforcement. they both say this announcement means they'll work, earn money for college and hopefully be able to reach their goals in the future, wolf. >> a lot of happy young people out there across the united states. we're going to have much more on the reaction from the latino community. that's coming up.mh, lisa. republicans accuse ptd obama of sidestepping congress and overstepping his own powers. i'll talk to the woman who's going to put the president's brand new policy on hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants into effect. and a milestone for the pentagon. we're going to tell you how it plans to honor its gay and lesbian troops. and from a hit super bowl commercial to a real-life medical drama, the little boy who cap vated the country as a minidarth vader has major surgery. ♪
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>> hi, again, wolf. june is officially gay pride month. and the pentagon will salute its gay and lesbian troops. they plan to hold a gay pride event later this month for the first time ever. it's been nearly one year since the military scrapped its don't ask, don't tell policy on gay and lesbian service members. and acapulco, mexico, is bracing for a possible brush with hurricane karlt this weekend. the powerful storm is packing 85-mile-an-hour winds as it turns in the eastern pacific. the national hurricane center warns it could bring life threatening flash floods and mud slides. and how much would you pay for a piece of history? one of the very few original apple computers sold for nearly, get this, $375,000 at sothby's today. helped usher in the computer revolution we live in now. and you may have heard of its creators, steve jobs, steve wozniak, sound familiar?
i want to give you an update now on a little boy who became a sensation as a mini-darth vader in this ad. the 7-year-old is recovering from open heart surgery for a congenital heart defect. his doctor says he's doing well. his mom asks for prayers for his son to have as little pain as possible as he recovers. max's little brother made him a special recovery pillow. that story just almost brings me to tears, wolf. i'm among those certainly sending out wonderful prayers and well-wishes for max. >> me too. i think all of our viewers are as well. adorable. adorable sweet little guy. we wish him a very speedy recovery. hope he does more commercials in the not too distant future. hundreds of thousands of immigration cases are impacted by the sweeping announcement by the o bad ma administration. is the security department ready for this change? i'm going to talk about that and much more with the secretary of
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deported. i talked about that and more with the woman in charge of implementing this new policy. joining us now the secretary of homeland security, janet napolitano, madame secretary, thanks for coming in on this busy day. you caught all of us by surprise especially as we went back and looked at what the president had said back in october 2010. he said i am president, i am not king. i can't do these things just by myself. we have a system of government that requires the congress to work with the executive branch to make it happen. i'm committed to making it happen. but i've got to have some partners to do it. he was referring to comprehensive immigration reform. but now he and you are taking unilateral executive action to begin this process. why now? >> well, this is a logical progression from a series of decisions that we've made over the last several years to focus immigration enforcement on those who violated criminal law in
addition to immigration law, those who are repeat violators and border crossers. we have unprecedented resources at the boarder so illegal immigration attempts at the southwest border haven't been this low since before 1971. but even as we've been enforcing the law -- and we have removed a record number of individuals from the country, there is this group, this group of young people brought here through no fault of their own. they often haven't been to their country of origin. they don't speak the language. they're in school or they're in the military. they've not been in trouble with the law. we need to within our discretionary authority defer action against these individuals. and that's what i'm announcing today. >> lindsay graham, the republican senator from south carolina says the president's decision -- what the president is doing is choosing politics over leadership because all of the critics are now insisting this wreaks of politics. you want to respond to them? >> well, i would say, no.
first of all, this was a decision out of my office, as the secretary of homeland security. and it was a decision made after we looked at what we've been doing over the last three years. and as you know, one of the things we've been doing over the last year is re-examining all 340,000 pending immigration cases and trying to restack them in line with our priorities and trying to administratively close cases that are low priority. but as we've done that, we've now -- we've seen this hole category of young people. and we need to go a step further. and this is the next logical step. and that is to actually defer action. >> you're talking about, what? 800,000 potential people who would qualify for this new status? >> it's really difficult to say. there are those who are in removal proceedings now.
we will either find them or we're asking them to help us self-identify. there will be hot lines and websites up over the next couple of days. and then there are those who haven't been in touch with the immigration system but they've been living under a cloud. and within 60 days they will be able to go to a cis office. and if they meet the criteria -- they're going to have to demonstrate they meet the criteria, they can be given a grant of deferred action. >> what about the parents of these children? the children come forward now, they identify themselves. should the parents be concerned that potentially they could be deported? they would now be identified as illegal immigrants. >> no. we are not going to do that. we have internally set it up so that the parents are not referred for immigration enforcement if the young person comes in for deferred action. however, the parents are not
qualified for deferred action. this is for the young people who meet the criteria that we've set forth. >> what social services would these young people be qualified for? will they be qualified to receive medicaid benefits? food stamps? school vouchers? stuff like that? >> no. no. they won't be -- again, there's deferred action now given in certain cases. and they don't qualify for those type of benefits. the one thing they may qualify for is a work authorization card if they can demonstrate economic necessity. >> is this the pathway to citizenship for these young people? >> not at all. in fact, that's where congress needs to act. we continue to urge the congress pass the dream act. look at comprehensive immigration reform, the immigration system as a whole. i've been dealing with immigration enforcement for 20 years. and the plain fact of the matter is is that the law that we're
working under doesn't match the economic needs of the country today. and the law enforcement needs of the untry today. but as someone who is charged with enforcing the immigration system, we're setting good strong sensible priorities. again, these young people really are not the individuals that the immigration removal process was designed to focus upon. >> one final question, is the department of homeland security, i.c.e., immigrations customs enforcement, are you worried about what's going to happen? you're going to be swamped with phone calls, appearances, these people want legal status. >> yeah. we're cautioning people. we need to take it, you know, kind of incrementally. instructions have gone out to i.c.e. and cbp today that they're not to put these young people into proceedings. we will begin the process over the next weeks of identifying those already in removal or
whoever received a final order of removal to consider them for deferred action. and there will be phone numbers and a public advocate that these individuals can actually call beginning next week if they think they qualify. and then for those who haven't been in the immigration system yet, they haven't been put into any kind of a proceeding but they want to come forward, that will have to be to a cis office. and that will be within 60 days. and, again, we are posting on dhs.gov, initial information, initial frequently asked questions. but we're going to have to work together with the community, with the country, to do a smooth implementation as possible. >> janet napolitano, thank you so much, secretary of homeland security. good luck. >> thanks. senator john mccain goes after one of mitt romney's biggest financial supporters borrowing a line from democrats saying, corporations are not people. plus, a chinese official accused of spying for
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president obama says he's trying to fix the country's broken immigration system, but critics say he's making an end run around congress and violating the constitution. let's talk about it in our strategy session. joining us are cnn contributor donna brazil, also joining us the arkansas republican strategist and former rick santorum spokeswoman, alex stewart. guys, thanks very much for coming in. let's talk about the politics for a moment, alice. i think you'll agree that as far as consolidating and expanding the president's support in the
latino community, this will probably help. >> no doubt. i mean, he had over 21 million reasons for making this announcement today. and those are the 21 -- more than 21 million eligible latino voters out there in the country. but the fact remains this unilateral decision to bypass congress is an insult to members of congress but also undermines the legal process. this was a political move in order to appeal to the latino hispanic community. he certainly needs the help after last week. he had a terrible week in washington and this week hasn't been much better. but he's appealing to a group of people. and it's improper. it's wrong. it's insult to members of congress who are elected by people across this country to enact the policies that people in this country want. but once again the president feels as though he has better ideas and solutions for this than members of congress. >> it's interesting, donna, that it's not a formal executive order signed by the president.
it's a policy regulation change that the department of homeland security, which is in charge of immigration, puts forward. and you heard the president and janet napolitano saying this is not amnesty thrks is not immunity, this is not a pathway to citizenship, this is not the dream act. it's simply a modest change allowing the individuals to stay in the united states for two years right now. but what do you make to the point that, alice, and other republicans have been making that he's basically violating the law and violating the constitution? >> first of all, the president acted within the law. and i don't think anyone with find what he did unconstitutional. but the republicans have to make up talking points to allow themselves to say something when they have no other solutions. wolf, the republicans have blocked the dream act from ever being implemented. in 2010 the democrats had it passed in the house. we had republican support in the senate. 55 people -- individuals supported it. they blocked it.
they don't want a path to citizenship. they don't want to solve the immigration problem. what the president did today was an act of compassion to allow these dreamers, these young people, i meet a lot of them myself as someone who tours the country, speak on campuses, talk to a lot of people, they just want to have an opportunity to work to make their lives better, their family lives better. i'm glad the president did it. this is an act of compassion. and hopefully the republicans one day will begin to understand that all -- that everyone who's here, especially those undocumented, they want to be americans. they want to dream. they want to help build our country as well. >> let me switch gears quickly, alice. a billionaire hotel owner in las vegas, ma cau china just gave $10 million to a pro-romney super pac. listen to this exchange that john mccain, the so-called maverick, used to call him the
maverick, a former republican presidential nominee with judy woodrith on pbs talking about all the money coming in. listen to this. >> obviously maybe in a round about way foreign money is coming into an american political campaign. >> because of the profits at the casinos and macau. >> that's a great deal of money. again, we need a level playing field. and we need to go back to the realization that teddy roosevelt had that we have to have a limit on the flow of money and that corporations are not people. >> he's talking about those casinos in china where he makes so much money. but he said corporations are not people. it sounded to me, alice, like a direct swipe at mitt romney who said this not that long ago. listen. >> there are various ways of doing that.
one is we could raise taxes on people -- we could raise taxes -- of course they are. everything corporations earn ultimately goes to people. >> corporations aren't people he says. john mccain flatly says corporations are not people. what are they? >> well, certainly the point that john mccain was making in the interview was to try and reign in large contributions to campaigns and to the special interest groups. the fact of the matter is you're not going to be able to stop the george soros money, the ed lson money. his net worth over $24 billion. this $10 million is a drop in the bucket. and the real story when it comes to campaign contributions is just last month governor romney outraised president obama. and his average contribution was less than $250. so for his campaign, most of the contributions are coming from average everyday people.
and they're going to contribute to the pacs and the special interest groups because they're hard working people. they earn money. and they're entitled to contribute to the causes and the candidates of their choosing. that's exactly what he's doing. >> sounds to me like john mccain still supports campaign finance reform, which obviously is not going anywhere. at least not now. we have to leave it there, ladies. thanks very much. a spy war heating up between the united states and china. top chinese security official now sitting behind bars. did he reveal china's spy network to washington? we're digging deep. that's coming up next. an accident doesn't have to slow you down. with better car replacement available only with liberty mutual auto insurance, if your car's totaled, we give you the money for a car one model year newer. to learn more, visit us today. responsibility. what's your policy?
front on this story. what's the latest, erin? >> this is a pretty amazing story, wolf. it could be someone who worked at the very highest levels of the chinese government worked for a vice minister who was someone who had the ear of the leader of china, hu jintao, turns out this person's chief deputy and assistant was a spy for the cia. talking to sources today, wolf, about what this spy could have provided to the united states. i'm hearing it really would have been the highest level of security. they would have had access to everything in the chinese government. so for example, it's possible that this spy was feeding the united states information about where china's submarine fleets were, whether china was planning, what sorts of cyber attacks and methods they were planning that could have attacked the nsc or cia itself. maybe plans for things like fighter jet program. really feeding the u.s. very sophisticated information. the spy though was found out by the chinese government and has been missing for a few months. so we're not sure at this point whether he's in custody or
perhaps if he's even still alive. >> you'll have a lot more i'm sure of this fascinating story. 7:00 p.m. eastern "erin burnett out front." thank you. president obama says a sweeping new change to the country's policy is not amnesty. republican leaders disagree. we're going in depth. and a reporter interrupts the president in the middle of the immigration announcement in the rose garden. the sparks that angered response from the president and controversy over his own behavior. and exploding population boom in pakistan. why it could be the most dangerous crisis the u.s. ally is facing. [ male announcer ] what if you had thermal night-vision goggles,
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seed bombs that are guaranteed to flourish even in urban environments. in greece a tourist strolls through ancient roman ruins in athens. in china, a city skyline lights up in celebration of the annual asian beach games. and in england, a little boy enjoys playing in a rainbow sand box. an innovative new attraction in london. pictures coming in from around the world. u.s. ally pakistan has been waging battle against the islamist militants but it may be facing an even bigger threat from within. cnn reports pakistan's population -- >> then it was -- 20 brothers and sisters. all of the kids belonging to dad
and his two wives who didn't want to be on camera. the moments have so many children. dad admits, it gets confusing. sometimes i forget their names. and i ask for help, he says. and the family may still get bigger. they're happy to have more kids, but population fast becoming this country's most dangerous crisis. >> i consider the population problem the biggest problem of this country. >> it's of huge concern that we are growing at one of the fastest rates in asia. >> with well over 180 million people, pakistan's the sixth most populous country in the world. >> future is bleak because of this population. >> akbar of the population welfare department admits the government shares the blame. pakistan doesn't do enough to
offer effective family planning services and teach people about birth control. >> we do not have that much mobility. we do not have that much sources. >> as we're doing a lot of research, these women wanted to have a child later but they just didn't find the services. >> another challenge, a deeply conservative culture. many here view birth control as unislamic. none of these methods is allowed in islam says this muslim cleric. why should muslims worry about population when god cares for everyone? today just one out of five pakistani women uses modern birth control, a factor that fuels pakistan's growth by roughly 4 million people every year. pakistan is on pace to double its population in just 40 years. >> everything is going to explode. >> everything's going to explode? >> because of the population. >> i think it's a frightening idea. >> frightening because pakistan already suffers from widespread
poverty, joblessness and energy crisis. a woeful education system and the bloody fight against islamist militants. imagine the same problems if the population doubled? >> naturally there will be epidemics, wars, fights for food and water and for everything. >> the moment children are already paying the price. a family can only afford to send four of their 20 children to school. the rest work to support the family. denied their most basic rights to have a childhood, an education and dreams of a better life. but there's still hope for pakistan experts say. they point to muslim countries like iran and bangladesh that curbed their population despite similar challenges. experts say those countries started with the political will to do something and spent a lot of time and resources on family planning efforts. pakistan can do it too, they say. but time is running out.
reza sayah, cnn. you're in "the situation room" right now. many republicans slamming the president's decision to stop supporting some young illegal immigrants accusing him of granting amnesty. but mitt romney's response is a lot more cautious. was president obama's rival thrown off message? and a reporter under fire for seemingly heckling the president during his announcement. is he doing his job, pushing a political agenda? or simply being rude? we'll discuss the uproar over this. and the air force solving a mystery of pilots suffering from breathing problems and blacking out in flight. we want to welcome our viewers from around the united states and the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room."
critics say president obama's decision to stop porting many young illegal immigrants is all about politics and the noveer elect the president says it's all about fairness. but his announcement already seems to be jolting the campaign. and to a certain degree, his rival, mitt romney. listen to president obama explain this major change in policy. >> effective immediately the department of homeland security is taking steps to lift the shadow of deportation from these young people. over the next few months eligible individuals who do not present a risk to national security or public safety will be able to request temporary relief from deportation proceedings and apply for work authorization. now, let's be clear. this is not amnesty. this is not immunity. this is not a path to
citizensh citizenship. it's not a permanent fix. this is a temporary stopgap measure that lets us focus our resources wisely while giving a degree of relief and hope to talented, driven, patriotic young people. it is the right thing to do. >> many republicans quickly attack the president's decision. but it took mitt romney a little bit longer to respond publicly. our senior political correspondent, jim acosta is traveling with romney in new hampshire right now. he finally did after a few hours make a statement. >> that's right, wolf. a senior romney advisor told me earlier this afternoon they look at the president's move on immigration as an attempt by the white house to pivot away from a bad couple of weeks on the economy. and it's a change in immigration policy that romney did not totally reject. as he embarked on a carefully crafted bus tour through six battleground states, mitt romney
found when it comes to driving the day's agenda, sometimes it's the man sitting in the white house who's behind the wheel. >> it makes no sense to expel talented young people who for all intents and purposes are americans. >> the president's move to halt the deportations of young illegal immigrants appeared to catch the romney campaign by surprise. at both stops in new hampshire the gop contender did not respond to questions from reporters about the change in white house policy. but just before he hopped on his bus to pennsylvania, romney weighed in. >> i believe the status of young people who come here through no fault of their own is an important matter to be considered and should be solved on a long-term basis so they know what their future would be in this country. i think the action that the president took today makes it more difficult to reach that long-term solution. >> throughout the gop primary season romney adopted a hardline stance on illegal immigration. he once said the undocumented should self-deport themselves back to their countries of origin. and he vowed he would not sign
the dream act, a bill designed to offer young illegal immigrants a path to citizenship. >> if i were elected and congress were to pass the dream act, would i veto it? the answer is yes. >> but after polls show the republican contender far behind the president among latinos, romney advocated a version of the dream act at a fundraiser in april saying we're going to be able to get hispanic voters, we're going to overcome the issue of immigration. he then said he would consider a bill from florida senator marco rubio, potential vice presidential running mate drafted a proposal noting it does not provide a path to citizenship. >> the new policy does not provide citizenship, but visas for those who come in with their families. >> democrats are already trying to throw romney's bus tour off message. the dnc launched its own rival bus tour and dubbed the romney economics, the middle class
under the bus. while the liberal group sent out a car with a dog strapped to the roof to tail the gop contender. romney still worked in his digs on the president's performance on the economy. >> he promised four more years, four more years of the same. four more very long years. >> the other big political takeaway from the day, wolf, is that mitt romney said earlier this afternoon that he's taking his cues on this white house change on immigration from marco rubio who has a noticeably softer stance on the immigration issue and a softer stance than much of the republican party. wolf. >> it certainly does. i suspect that romney feels very comfortable with rubio and rubio's position as opposed to some of the more hardlined views among other republicans. jim acosta in new hampshire. thank you. one obama administration official tells cnn this policy could affect 800,000 young illegal immigrants in the united
states. many of them on this day they are celebrating right now. one undocumented student in los angeles shared her joy with us only moments before the president's announcement. >> i just want to cry. i'm just so happy that it's not just me be all my dreamers, they are now having the opportunity to get permits to work legally. you know and we won't be deported. we wake up every morning. we go outside on the streets and we are like, oh my god, what if i get in trouble and get deported? i don't want to be separated from the people i love. we grew up here. we have our families here and our friends here. and now that obama has said this, we are really happy we knew we will have an opportunity to work inside this country sfwl concern president obama is helping many latinos share that young woman's sentiment and joy and will decide to vote for him in november. let's bring in chief political
analyst, gloria borger. to a certain degree this might box in romney and rubio. >> exactly. if that wasn't the sole purpose of what the president did today, it certainly is a clear by-product. i mean, this is -- this presidential race is going to be about hispanic voters in many ways in those battleground states like nevada, colorado, new mexico and a state like florida. maybe even arizona. so it's very important. but as you can see from what jim acosta was saying, the romney and rubio responses today were very subdued. there were lots of republicans out there saying this is amnesty, that it's unconstitutional, holding congressional hearings on it. but you didn't hear that from mitt romney and marco rubio. what you heard is this is a short-term solution. and it's clear they got to walk a fine line now letting hispanic voters know in a way that they hear what they're saying about the children of illegal immigrants. they want to figure out a way to get around this. so it's interesting that mitt
romney did not come out there and attack the president on this. it was very subdued in tone. >> and romney was more subdued than marco rubio for that matter. >> right. >> rubio did at one point at the end of his statement say by again ignoring the constitution and going around congress, this short-term policy will make it harder to find a balance and responsible long-term one. so he was playing with that. >> but it wasn't in romney's interest to come out and bash the president today. >> no, he didn't do that. >> he did not do that. >> but is there a downside for the president in making this shift? >> obviously helps with hispanic voters. goes without saying. president's already ahead with hispanic voters. but talking to republican pollsters and who have done focus groups, what's interesting is the change in the way voters view barack obama from 2008 is that now they believe he's just another politician, wolf. and they didn't see him that way in 2008. and this could play into the notion that he's another politician, the timing of this
is political. and so if he's seen as just another poll, that doesn't help him with independent voters. >> seen as strictly a political decision as oppose today a profile encourage-type decision, that could hurt him. >> that could hurt him. >> where does the public stand? >> the public is very, very strong on enforcement, but they're very willing to give the children of illegal immigrants a break. look at this poll that was done in early may by the national journal. the question was asked, how should the united states handle all illegal immigrants in the u.s. who have broken no other laws? and you see allow some to stay in the u.s. if they've lived here for many years, 44%. that's basically what the president was saying today. if you don't have a criminal record, you're the children of illegal immigrants, you participate in a positive way in this society, we're not going to give you a path to citizenship, but we are going to allow you to work here. so he's consolidating the people
who are already with him. >> we're going to be seeing the political fallout for a long time on this decision. >> we will. >> thanks, gloria. this was clearly a big announcement for the president. right in the middle of it all he got angry and a bit rattled. a reason a reporter in the rose garden interrupted the president shouting questions seeming to heckle him. listen to this. >> it is -- it is the right thing to do. excuse me, sir. it's not time for questions, sir. [ inaudible question ] not while i'm speaking. and the answer to your question, sir, and the next time i prefer you let me finish my statements before you ask that question, is this is the right thing to do for the american people. i didn't ask for an argument. i'm answering your question. [ inaudible question ] it is the right thing to do for the american people. here's why. >> that reporter was neil monroe, the white house
correspondent for the conservative online news "the daily caller." let's bring in the host of cnn's "reliable sources." what did you think of that? was that reporter, neil monroe, off base? what did you think? >> wolf, let's not mince words. this was a monumental act of rudeness act by neil monroe. let's not be distracted by the alibi that we have to be aggressive in questioning the president. yes, reporters should shout questions at presidents when they've finished a statement, when they're working a rope line, walking to the helicopter. not while the president is addressing not just in the rose garden but the american people via television. >> it won't diminish the president's commitment to pursuing immigration policies that reflect our values, laws and history as a nation of immigrants. monroe issued his own statement saying, i timed the question believing the president was closing his remarks because naturally i have no intention of
interrupting the president of united states. i know he rarely takes questions before walking away from the podium. you buy that? >> i don't buy it at all. first of all, he interrupted mid mf sentence. second of all he kept talking while the president said, excuse me, i'm not taking questions right now. the president circled back and said i'm answering your question, he spoke again. this was a stunt design today draw attention to "daily caller." he's written critically of immigration reform. it just came off -- i'm all for aggressive journalism, but this was rudeness. >> i've been in the rose garden many times -- >> have you ever seen that happen? >> no. i know that as soon as the president stops and he ends what he's saying, he'll either walk away or take a question. and whether sam donaldson in the older days or bill plant even nowadays or other white house reporters shout questions and i shouted questions many times. i always waited for a president to finish his statement. i never interrupted him in the middle of a statement. >> excuse me for interrupting, it's not that difficult to figure out when a president is
done making his statement. i'm not saying you have to play by the rules even though the white house said they're not taking questions. once in a while a president will turn back and answer a shouted question. but to do it and to keep talking while the president clearly did not want to be interrupted, that struck me as somebody who went there to create a moment. and since we're talking about it here, i guess he did. >> i remember one incident, and i have clip. i'll play it. it generated angry reaction from bill clinton as president of the united states when bret hooum was working for abc. just anounce the supreme court nominee, the president finished, brit waited to finish.for the presint then he asked this --sten to w irritated bill cto got. >>yourent focus on judge briar and your turn late seems to judge ginsburg may have created a position perhaps
unfair in the zigzag quality in the decision making process, i wonder if you could walk u through it -- >> i have long since given up the thought that i could disabuome of you returning any substantiative decision in anything but political process. how you could ask a question like that after the statements just made is beyond me. >> he then walked away. he was irritated. but brett waited. the president called on him. he wasn't interrupting the president in the middle of that announcement. >> i remember that day well in 1993 and bill clinton stalked off. he was recognized and asked a perfect question politely, bill clinton just didn't like the question. wouldn't equate that in any way with what neil monroe did today with president obama. >> the only equating was that obama was clearly angry, clinton was clearly angry. but these two reporters acted very, very differently. >> i would agree with that. and the president -- this
president did let it get under his skin. he was certainly not expecting to be interrupted. and it took him off his game just a little bit. >> they haven't apologized. tucker carlson, neil monroe, they've explained what he was trying to do. should they issue a formal apology to the president? >> i think that would be warranted because tucker carlson, our one-time colleague here doubling down defending his guy. i get that. but the fact is they were wrong. and to defend it and try to cast it as an example of aggressive journalism seems to me to just not own up to the basic fact that anybody could see on that tv screen which was he interrupted the president in a very rude fashion. >> see you sunday morning 11:00 a.m. eastern here on cnn "reliable sources ". >> we'll be talking about this as well. >> i'm sure you will. two michigan lawmakers barred on speaking on the state house floor for using words that don't usually come up in political debate. and as the violence in syria keeps gelting worse, u.s. officials believe they have more proof russia is aiding the regime's brutal crackdown.
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now to a controversy in michigan where two female lawmakers have been barred from speaking on the house floor because of an improper level of "maturity and civility." let's go to mary snow. she's been working the story. what's this all about, mary? >> wolf, i spoke to someone who's covered michigan politics for decades. he says this is really unprecedented. the republican-controlled house did not allow two female democrats to speak on the house floor one day after a heated abortion debate. those democrats are asking today, what did they do wrong? republicans in michigan are calling this a temper tantrum. >> the question before the house senate absent of amendment -- members may vote at their desk. the amendment is not adopted.
are there further amendments. >> she was drowned out but vasectomy was the last word she said. she was pushing as part of an opposition for a bill restricting abortions. lisa brown, another democrat, was barred from speaking after saying this. >> and finally, mr. speaker, i'm flattered that you're all so interested in my vagina, but no means no. >> members, i do ask that you respect the decorum of the house. >> brown also made references to her jewish religion. >> the state of pregnancy does not matter. wherever there is a question of the life of the mother or unborn child, jewish law rules in favor of preserving the life of the mother. >> the democratic lawmaker says she still hasn't been told by the republican leadership why she couldn't speak on the house floor thursday. >> i've been making guesses. i didn't know if it was my references to my religious believes, i didn't know if it was using the word vagina.
without telling me anything, i'm only left to guess. >> the republican leadership says religion was not the reason. that the ban is about keeping decorum. >> this is not about women. this is not about policy. this is not about the use of two anatomically and medically correct terms. this is about acting professional on the house floor. and this is about making sure that we maintain a level of decorum. >> republican respective lisa lisaly lyon took offense. >> as she finished her statement compares part of the bill to rape. and that is when she was gavelled down. and that is what our floor leader and speaker protem objected to. >> i think that they're looking for an excuse to punish me when i didn't do anything wrong. >> to me this is a war on women. it's siejsing our voices and saying we want control of our bodies.
>> now, a spokesman from michigan's house republican leader says the ban was only in effect for thursday. it was the last day of session before a month-long break. but clearly the reaction it has sparked has turned this into a much bigger political fight that isn't going to go away after one day. wolf. >> mary snow with that report. thank you. we also have an update on that jetblue pilot who had a mid-flight meltdown. passengers say he ranted incoherently. standby for an update. and the leader of the free world pops in for a surprise lunch, but then sticks the restaurant with his bill. the awkward situation facing one barbecue joint right here in washington. [ male announcer ] when this hotel added aflac
we have an update on that infamous jetblue pilot, lisa sylvest sylvester's monitoring that. some other top stories in "the situation room" right now. what's going on here, lisa? >> hi, wolf. a judge has ruled the jetblue pilot who had a strange mid-air meltdown is fit to stand trial. he is mentally competent and understands the proceedings against him. a flight from jfk to las vegas was diverted. and the state department says it's "extremely concerned" about the health of alan gross, the american prisoner being held in cuba. gross can't even walk in his cell anymore. gross was arrested in 2009 for bringing communications equipment into cuba. cuba's ministry of foreign affairs says gross is being treated properly, eating healthy meals and his conditions are just typical of someone his age. and the white house made a surprise stop for a barbecue in washington, but left the
restaurant a surprise when lunch finished on wednesday. an unpaid tab. president obama visited with service members and local barbers, but amidst all of the hubbub, the white house forgot to pay the $55 tab before leaving. fortunately they all settled it up later in the day. and that lunch, wolf, was actually to honor a group of dads. we're going to have more on that story coming up a little bit in this hour. wolf. >> i'm sure they left a nice tip, too. >> i'm sure they did. >> looking forward to your report. thanks, lisa. more russian military help may be on the way to syria as the violence intensifies. could russia troops be next? f-22 fighter pilots here in the united states blacking out in flight. the u.s. air force says it's closer to figuring out why. [ horn honks ]
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syrian activists tell cnn that 20 children are being held as human shields right now abducted by pro-government forces from an embattled neighborhood in homs, syria. 36 people were killed in escalating violence across syria today. and we're learning that more military help for the bashar al-assad regime's deadly crackdown may be on the way from russia. let's go to our pentagon correspondent, barbara what are you learning? >> we've seen angry statements between moscow and washington all week long about the helicopters going to syria and the russians saying they don't want to see any outside
intervention in syria. so what on earth is a russian military cargo ship doing on its way to that country? the u.s. is tracking this russian military cargo ship as it makes its way to syria carrying weapons, ammunition and troops. defense officials tell cnn that u.s. intelligence believes the russians are sending the ship and small number of troops to help fortify its naval base as the situation in syria continues to spiral out of control. >> we have been concerned about escalating violence and about the lack of a cease-fire and about the potential for civil war. >> cnn has learned that classified u.s. imagery shows they began deporting on june 7th and is heading for the syrian port of tartus where the russians have a naval facility. the port is vital for russian naval access to the entire middle east.
u.s. officials say under mer time rules, russia should declare what the ship is carrying when it enters the mediterranean. it's not yet known how many troops are on board and whether they are merely helping transport the weapons or will in fact stay in syria. for now the u.s. believes the russians just want to defend their facilities. but it's not clear how much of a threat the russians really are facing from opposition attacks. the area's not seen a lot of fighting. u.s. officials are worried there could be other plans for the troops and the military gear. it comes as u.s. and u.n. officials continue to worry the violence will break into all-out civil war. the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff told cnn thursday the suicide bombing that damaged a shiite mosque in damascus is a dangerous escalation. >> which, of course, gives us pause that have been in iraq and seen how these issues become sectarian and then they become
civil wars and then they become very difficult to resolve. >> nbc news was the first to report that russian ship was on its way to syria. we've learned that inside the administration now there are extended discussions about this sectarian violence that has broken out and whether this is all headed to become a much more tragic and violent situation than we even saw in iraq. wolf. >> barbara, thank you. thanks very much. there's classified information about the war on terror that has just been declassified. our chief white house correspondent, jessica yellin's been looking into this new information for us. what are you learning? >> hi, wolf. this is a new move by the white house and they're offering up a little more information about the war on terror in both yemen and somalia. what's different is now they're formerly declassifying the fact that the u.s. is engaged in military operations against al qaeda in those two countries.
you might say secretary panetta has acknowledged action in yemen before. and the white house has confirmed the killing of a top al qaeda target. but what's important is a semi-annual report to congress. and that's a meaningful step in a government this big. and more classified material is so important. >> as you know there are formal investigations into all these national security leaks of so-called classified information. does this impact any of this? >> one always wonders when something comes out on a friday. so the timing given these leaks investigation is interesting. it probably does not impact that investigation. there's nothing in this report that describes the methods the u.s. uses to go after terrorists. it's not detailed in that way. but critics say the white house has been talking up their war on terror to look tough in an election year. and this could give them more ammunition to make that claim. on the other hand, the administration did vow
transparency. so they could make the case they're revealing what they feel they can. in a statement to cnn, wolf, a senior administration official said they declassified only what they felt would not compromise u.s. national security interests. >> jessica, thank you. f-22 pilots are having breathing problems in flight ten times more often than pilots in other jets. the u.s. air force now scrambling to try to solve a dangerous problem. and we'll tell you why china is offering a rare apology.
playing sports is just my whole life. looking back if it wasn't for shriners hospital, things would just be really, really different. i lost my leg when i was a kid. there was a time when i felt like i wasn't going to be able to walk again... it was a pretty bad accident but shriners showed me who i could be again.
breathing problems and actually get sick than on board other u.s. air force jets. our pentagon correspondent, chris lawrence, has more on this investigation. chris. >> wolf, we've been talking to our sources. and we're either getting very close to cracking this mystery orbout to open up a completely new part of the investigation. imagine you can't breathe or blacking out ten miles off the ground going twice the speed of sound. it's happened to pilots of the f-22 ten times as often as any other jet. but the air force believes it is closer to solving the mystery of why. >> this is the g-vest. >> cnn has learned that air force investigators found pressure vests filling with air when they shouldn't. it's supposed to expand and contract to fight the effects of severe g-forces. but sources say it may restrict pilots' breathing and cause high pox ya.
>> i find everything funny. >> kizinger experiencing it during training simulations and says it gets worse from there to where he couldn't solve a simple math problem or make judgment calls. >> some beginning stages of passing out and ultimately dying. >> he's been pushing the air force to figure it out. some experts have doubts about blaming the vests since pilots flying at low altitude and f-22 maintenance workers have complained about it too. >> it can't really be an oxygen problem if people on the ground are having very similar symptoms and also pilots below 15,000 feet. >> a former aviation designer who helped build the f-16 and a-10, he says the one thing that sets the f-22 apart is its special stealth capability. >> they admitted that stealth coatings were toxic, they would have to ground the b-2, the
f-22, the f-35. you're talking about things that affect more than half of the air force's procurement budget. >> air force officials say they have found nothing toxic or at least for pilots in that stealth coating. they also say in the 14,000 flights since last summer only 11 pilots have reported hypoxia and none in the last few months, wolf. >> how do they explain the ground crews getting sick? >> good question. i was speaking with a defense official who told me one line of thinking, they can't be sure, but one line of thinking is that maybe it's mental. in other words, he's saying perhaps some of the ground crews and pilots flying at low altitude heard about the problems with hypoxia and then when they were feeling sort of funny one day came to actually believe that they too were suffering from it. >> i think i'm beginning to suffer a little bit just hearing about it.
thanks very much, chris lawrence, for that. a -- defective baby strollers cause at least three children to have their fingertips amputated. we're going to find out what's being done to put an end to this truly frightening problem. and a daredevil from the famous family of performers taking his talents to a whole new level. he's going to be walking over niagra falls on a tight rope. [ thunk ] sweet! [ male announcer ] the solid thunk of the door on the jetta. thanks, mister! [ meow ] [ male announcer ] another example of volkswagen quality. that's the power of german engineering. right now lease the 2012 jetta for $159 a month. visit vwdealer.com today. ♪ [music plays]
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illegally detained and coerced to have the procedure in the seventh month of her pregnancy. it happened because the woman's husband couldn't afford a $6,300 fee for a birth permit for their second child. his wife was traumatized in the hospital on china's equivalent of twitter, the case was among the top trending topics. three officials involved in the incident have since been suspended. a very scary incident for a member of congress today. pennsylvania representative robert brady's wife says men in masks tried to break into their home. she was alone at the time when she heard a knock at the door. that's when she saw three men in hooded masks and surgical masks. the phone and cable lines were also cut. luckily nobody was hurt. police are investigating the incident. and 52 years after his spy plane was down over the soviet union at the height of the cold war, the air force is awarding france's gary powers a silver
star. he was jailed in the soviet union for two years. and he was threatened with death and deprived of sleep and food. but he still refused to reveal confidential information. he returned to the u.s. in 1962 in a spy swap. his children say the medal finally sets the record straight on what he endured. and a popular stroller is being recalled after three children have their fingertips amputated from its hinges. two adults also reported smashing their fingers in the stroller, which is made by cole craft. proxly 36,000 defective strollers sold in the united states and canada in the last six years. that's according to the consumer products safety commission. and the legal data between actors kevin costner and steven baldwin has been settled. and a jury is siding with costner. baldwin alleged kevin costner fooled him into selling stock in a company that made oil spill clean-up machines the same week bp placed a 52 million order for the technology. baldwin says it cost him
millions, but jury obviously disagrees. wolf. >> jury gets the final word in that one. lisa, thank you. a daredevil is about to take the family tradition to new heights. 200 feet above niagra falls. nick wallenda of the famous flying wallendas has been practicing this terrifying tight rope walk. and tonight he does it for real. he spoke with cnn's national correspondent, jason carol, about the stunt of a lifetime. >> an ominous sight, raging water rumbling over niagra falls' crest line dropping 180 feet. imagine walking across the falls on a high wire. sound like a nightmare? >> yesterday i trained with about 52-mile-an-hour winds. >> just the opposite for nick wallenda. >> it's been a dream of mine for a long time. i'm one of those that always tries to over achieve. i want to do more. i want to do bigger things. i want to do exciting things. >> call it exciting. call it crazy. wallenda will attempt to cross
niagra falls on a steel rope two inches in diameter. no bigger than a tennis ball. the walk, more than 1,500 feet long. 200 feet above the falls. clearly you don't have a fear of heights. >> i don't. i respect heights. it's not a fear. fear is debilitating. makes it to where it's almost impossible. you overreact and it will cause you to fall. >> wallenda had a near fall on the last high-wire walk across baltimore's inner harbor. he was able to steady himself, due to years of practice. he comes from seven generations of flying wallendas, a name given for their dare devil antics. over the decades, the family has seen successes and tragedy. in 1978, his great grandfather attempted a walk between two hotel towers in puerto rico. he slipped and fell to his death. >> he is definitely my inspiration behind what i do. do i this out of respect for him. absolutely i think about him and i'll think of him as i cross the
falls for sure. >> wal end a has always walked without a harness. but not this time. his sponsors are requiring he wear one for the niagara walk. >> why don't you want to wear the harness? you're talking to someone that doesn't walk a wire. >> you know, i think it is more about personal goal than anything. my personal goal is to do it without a harness. >> both his father and uncle support that goal. >> i think a lot of people are going to find that hard to understand. you say that because he is not used to training with a harness? >> he has never worn a harness in all those years. >> it's a bit personal for me in that i am the guy designing this thing now so that it will get over the wire. >> wallenda's practice this day without a harness goes well. he said a prayer mid walk, says he will do more of that crossing the falls. >> i know there's angels around me and viewers that will be lifting me up in their prayers. >> jason carroll, cnn, niagara
falls, new york. >> someone who grew up in buffalo, new york, has been to niagara falls many, many times. i wish him only the best. i'll be praying for him as well, anxious to watch this stunt. as we approach father's day, president obama sits down to lunch with four model dads in washington. all part of a program called fatherhood buzz. we spoke with two of those dads. our cloud is not soft and fluffy. our cloud is made of bedrock. concrete. and steel.
our cloud is the smartest brains combating the latest security threats. it spans oceans, stretches continents. and is scalable as far as the mind can see. our cloud is the cloud other clouds look up to. welcome to the uppernet. verizon. i'm one of six children that my mother raised by herself, and so college was a dream when i was a kid. i didn't know how i was gonna to do it, but i knew i was gonna get that opportunity one day, and that's what haed with university of phoenix. nothing can stop me now. i feel like the sky's the limit with what i can do and what i can accomplish. my name is naphtali bryant and i am a phoenix. visit phoenix.edu to find the program that's right for you. enroll now.
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nation's capital. in england, flags from around the world adorn london streets in anticipation of the 2012 olympic games. hot shots. pictures coming in from around the world. just about a month after president obama came out in support of same sex marriage, he has been hosting a reception at the white house today in honor of gay pride month. he told gays and lesbians after decades of inaction, they have the reason and right to push for equality. >> we know we've got more to do. americans may feel more comfortable bringing their partners to the office barbeque, but we're still waiting for a fully inclusive unemployment, nondiscrimination act. congress needs to pass that legislation so that no american is fired simply for being gay or transgender. americans may be able to serve openly in the military, but many are still growing up alone and afraid, picked on, pushed around for being different, and that's why my administration has worked
to raise awareness about bullying. >> the president marking gay pride month at the white house. sunday is father's day. this week, president obama made a surprise lunch stop to a restaurant in washington where he ate barbeque with four fathers, two service members, two d.c. area barbers. lisa sylvester has the story of two of the men the president honored for being great dads. >> how you doing. >> checker board is a friendly game. >> learn something about checkers. >> person moves out of turn, tries to cheat, good old dad will catch it. >> if they need a haircut, they come to me. >> reporter: you can learn a lot in these falls. >> barbershop is the foundation of the neighborhood. >> i have been here 51 years.
man with a plan. >> reporter: and his son robbie. >> it starts right here. you have to take reach one, teach one. that's what you got to do. my dad, he has been a role model all my life. he is my best friend. and he has always told me to be a man, you must see a man. >> first thing i tell young folks, you have two ears and one mouth. listen twice as much as you talk. if they sit and listen, they'll learn something. simple as that. >> reporter: for mason, his business is all about cutting hair, but his job, raising four daughters and two sons. >> he has always been there from day one. he's never been an absent dad from all the way up until right now. >> reporter: this barbershop is part of a new white house initiative called fatherhood buzz. a way to reach to dads through
barber shops, encourage them to spend more time with their children. >> we go fishing together, play checkers together. we have been on trips to play checkers, and we spend time as buddies. i won't make a major move in my life without talking to him. >> mason and his fellow barber, the man known around here as big o were honored at a barbeque lunch with the president. only four dads in the whole country were chosen. >> to sit and have lunch with the president of the united states, shake his hand, take some pictures, you don't get that every day. i think my secret is not a secret to me, it is to treat them right, you know, treat your kids right, try to give them what they ask for, let them know that you love them. >> reporter: advice passed down from one generation to the next. >> make sure you're in their life, every