tv Starting Point CNN June 20, 2012 4:00am-4:12am PDT
between police and julian assange, held up inside the ecuadorian embassy, asking for ai' asylum on the allegations that he sexually assaulted some women in his office. we're going to update you on this story as we get more details. but we're watching that for you this morning. other breaking news to get to as well for people taken hostage in a bank in france. the man is claiming to be an al qaeda militant and demanding they talk to him. we'll update you on that story as well. other headlines from christine romans. good morning. >> good morning, developing news out of egypt, just one day before we learn who is actually going to be running that country. we'll have that story in just a minute. first, president obama is back in the u.s. after making his case to stop the ripple effect of the economic crisis. he encouraged eu leaders to make
short-term economic fixes and leaders will have their own summit next week. he explained whi troubles in europe mean trouble for the u.s. >> europe as a whole is our largest trading partner. if fewer folks are buying stuff in paris or berlin, that means that we're selling less stuff made in pittsburgh or cleveland. all of these issues, economic issues, will potentially have impact on the election. but that's not my biggest concern right now. >> democratic senator jack reed will join soledad to assess how important europe's future is to president obama's chances of re-election. in three hours, a house committee could hold attorney general eric holder in contempt of congress. a last-ditch meeting between holder and darrel issa failed to resolve a dispute over the botched fast and furious
operation. that program allowed weapons to reach mexican drug gangs. he has been demanding holder turn over more documents. in 30 minutes soledad talks with elijah cummings who was at the meeting. in a few hours we'll find out in jerry sandusky will testify at his own trial. sandusky is prepped and ready to take the stand today. the defense is expected to rest its case this afternoon. before that happens, lawyers for the former penn state coach will make a final decision about whether to let him face questioning. closing arguments in the child molestation case could take place tomorrow. a heat wave, brutal heat wave moving into the northeast today. let's get a quick check on the weather with meteorologist rob marciano. >> today is going to be the warmest air we've seen since jum of last year. some places may touch 100. these are the record highs for bosz ton, new york, philly, d.c., mid to upper 90s today and tomorrow, cooling off a little
over the weekend. there's some humidity with this. that increases what it feels like as far as your body is concerned. heat indexes 100, 110 today. a dozen states from maine to the mid-atlantic under heat advisories or heat warnings. take care of your elderly neighbors and your pets. severe storms and flash flooding potentially across the upper great lakes. 99 in d.c., want to cool off? come to atlanta, 89 degrees, kind of chilly down here. >> thanks, rob. >> so close they can taste it. the miami heat one win away from an nba title. lebron shook off a a leg injury to hit a three-pointer in the final minutes as the heat held off the thunder. james just missed a triple double. had 12 assists, nine rebounds, the win gives miami a 3-1 series lead that no team in finals
history, soledad has ever blown. >> i wish you hadn't said that. let's just get through and win this game, come on. that no team has ever blown in ltd history of mankind. >> those stats are meant to be broken. >> all of my fingers are crossed. let's get to the developing news out of egypt this morning. a day before we learned who's going to be the new president of that country, we're now getting some conflicting reports about the health of the former president hosni mubarak. a state news agency is reporting that the 84-year-old is clinically dead. his lawyer says he's in a coma. the military says mubarak's condition is critical but that he is still alive. all of this confusion is coming at a critical time for egypt. thousands gathering overnight in cairo's tahrir square protesting the military leaders who stripped major powers from the office of the presidency. you'll remember this was the place where the movement to overflow mubarak was born. thousands of protesters staring
down tanks and risking their lives for something they now worry is going to be taken away. ivan watson is live in cairo. what's the latest? how crowded is the square? >> reporter: the square has thinned out, the crowd were gone by 3:00 in the morning local time. and disbursed and the muslim brotherhood has indicated it did not want to participate in any kind of violent protest and wanted them to move on. that's despite the fact that some of the demonstrators were threatening to stage a sit-in until the military council that has run this country since hosni mubarak stepped down, until it carried out an unconditional hand over of power to a civilian elected government. that clearly isn't happening any time soon. soledad? >> ivan watson in cairo. thank you for that report. let's get right to daniel kurtzer, the former u.s.
ambassador to egypt. when we hear reports and reporters saying that the gathering in the square is not because of mubarak and there is still conflicting information on whether he is dead or clinically dead or not dead. because of the movement as ivan reported by the military to minimize the power of the office of the presidency. are you seeing in some ways a repeat of last year? >> well, in some ways it's a culmination or a continuation of last year. i think mubarak's health is not a factor at all in the decision-making of the egyptian masses. but they are concerned, number one is the possibility that the election that they just went through may be stolen from them by fraud by either side, either the islamists or the military. and second, that the military may not respect the outcome of the elections and hold on to a certain amount of power, even after they are supposed to be a transition. >> if mubarak lives or dies or
die imminently, will be a factor at all on any of these protests? >> no, i think it's in political terms, it's not going to make much of a difference. a lot of egyptians would have liked to see him go to jail and suffer the punishment of the years of abuse but it has to do with this tug of war between the islamists and the military. the election is going to be very close. it looks as though moresi has won, no one knows for sure. either way, it's going to be contested on the streets. that's what we're seeing now in tahrir square. >> they've been chanting, down with military rule, we're not finish -- we're going to finish the revolution. what would that mean? could you still have the military doing as we've seen them do, you mention many perceiving it as fraud, and still have a revolution that's
not finished? >> well, there's been an argument that what happened last year was simply a decap tags, mubarak left office a couple of top officials left office, but the system remained in place with the military essentially replacing mubarak at the top. the revolutionaries in tahrir square and islamists would like to see the military no longer having a role in formulating national decision-making as it were and having the military come under civilian control. for the tahrir crowd, that would be the real revolution. until now that has not happened. >> you mentioned speculation that morsi could likely win. what happens then come thursday? >> well, it will be most interesting both from the perspective of egyptians and perspective of washington.
at least half of the egyptian population is concerned that morsi will lead egypt down a path of islamist that egyptians feel represents them culturally and religiously but they don't want to necessarily run under the strict tours of fund amou amtallist islam. the peace treaty between egypt and israel and the strategic relationship between egypt and the united states, there's real questions that need to be answered should morsi win the election. >> daniel kurtzer, thank you for being with us. we appreciate it. we have more breaking news to get to out of france where four people have been taken hostage by a man claiming to be an al qaeda militant. jim bitterman is live in paris this morning. good morning. >> reporter: good morning, soledad, i think police are taking this more seriously than they might in a normal armed
robbery because of the few of the details that have now emerged. basically what happened is that a gunman entered the bank a little before noon local time this morning. and one shot was fired. then the gunman took four employees of the bank hostage and been holding the hostages ever since. he says that he's a member of al qaeda. that's one thing that has set the police on edge. another thing is that this is all taking place just a few hundred yards away from the home -- what was the former home of mara, you may remember, the young man that back in march killed seven people and then later died himself in a police shootout in toulouse, there is some indication to connect the two events and elite squad of hostage negotiators on their way to see if they can resolve the solution. >> are people very anxious?
>> reporter: i think there's a great deal of anxiety in the neighborhood. there's been eyewitness interviews conducted and people are worried about what's happening around them. they will be especially worried if there is some kind of a link to this earl year shootout that took place. the police have sealed off the neighborhood and told shopkeepers to stay inside and stay out of sight while this thing is being resolved. >> jim bitterman reporting from paris. thank you. we appreciate the update. let's take you to london where julian isassange is holde up in the ecuadorian embassy. can you update us on what's happening there? >> reporter: morning, soledad. it really is a watch and wait at the moment. we understand that the ecuadorian ambassador is heading to formally inform the