tv Piers Morgan Tonight CNN March 23, 2012 3:00am-4:00am EDT
tonight breaking news on the trayvon martin case. a top cop stands aside. what happens next to this case. and what killed whitney houston. the latest from the coroner and the houston family's reaction. and what makes newt gingrich stay in this presidential race. >> it was really the wrong thing for him to say and the white house apparently has agreed. >> i'll ask the former speaker that and what he thinks of someone calling him a hypocrite. plus tim tebow is bound for the new york jets. will he be the next broadway joe? only one guy knows the answer to that, joe namath. >> and she made tv news history. >> good evening, i'm connie chung. >> he made guilty pleasures. tonight the interview with connie chung, maury povich on life, love and politics. why should americans keep saying sorry?
this is "piers morgan tonight." good evening. our big story tonight, with the louisiana primary just days away newt gingrich is on the attack, taking shots at president obama, mitt romney, rick santorum. even robert de niro. also connie chung and mori aury povich povich, a power couple with 75 years in the news business. they'll weigh in on everything from the gop to whitney houston and my worldwide exclusive with football legend joe namath. does he think new york has faith in tim tebow? >> he'll be happy here, he'll fit in well here and we're happy to have him. >> i'm really psyched up. i'm looking forward to next season. >> look what he did for the broncos last year. it might push sanchez to be tougher and get out there all the time. >> well, he's not going to be a quarterback. he's a wild card. >> they'll play him as a running back. >> i think it's dumb.
>> i think you'll find joe namath doesn't disagree with that last gentleman but we'll find out. we begin with breaking news, the coroner's report on whitney houston's death has come in. the singer died of accidental drowning and that cocaine and heart disease were contributing factors. joining me now from los angeles, dr. drew pinsky. drew, what do you make of this report? i was reading the drugs that were found in whitney's body. cocaine, metabolites, marijuana, xanax, flexeril, a muscle relaxant, benadryl, an allergy medicine. anything massively surprising there? >> no, really not. actually what i was expecting was more in the pill category. i mean she did have some xanax and flexeril but that wasn't directly related to her death. it appears this was more of a stimulant death, although many people deny that she was using cocaine. in fact she clearly was. what cocaine will do is cause massive cardiac events like a sudden arrhythmia that causes the blood pressure to lower, the individual to go unconscious and in her case evidently she slipped into the water and
drowned. >> her family has come out saying they're very saddened by this report. we can understand that. they were obviously hoping that it wouldn't show she had taken illegal drugs. i would say, look, i'm not an expert in this but when you and i have spoken before, this seems like a classic drug addict's death in many ways. >> oh, absolutely. this is just another addiction death. and, you know, i spoke to bobby brown's sister this evening and many of bobbi kristina's cousins and they believe everyone around her was aware she was in serious trouble. so all these denials appear to be empty. they don't seem to be anything truthful going on here. people are running for cover and trying to, you know, find ways to feel better about this. it's a very tragic, sad phenomenon. but the fact is she had failed treatment multiple times. she was treated last spring, back to work in the fall. that already was a recipe for disaster. everyone around her knew she was using alcohol. that is a massive relapse. it was just inevitable that she would get back to more serious
drugs. >> and the final tipping point would seem to be based on what we have now read that the cocaine induced -- she had a cocaine hit very close to the moment of death. that she had a massive heart attack of some sort and then drowned? >> something like that. something like that. we actually don't know when the cocaine was consumed. the final report isn't out yet. all we know is there were cocaine metabolites. if you find the actual molecule of cocaine that had not been yet metabolized by the body, that means the consumption was probably within a few hours. but cocaine, particularly in somebody her age, can cause through various ways, basically increasing oxygen demand causing vessel constriction, increasing platelet. they have clot more fact in the heart and directly affecting the heart causing arrhythmias. so all of these things can have massive effects. low blood pressure, unconsciousness. if you're in a bathtub, well, that can lead to drowning. now again, i spoke to bobby
brown's sister tonight, who had grave -- a lot of questions about why she was in a bathtub. this is a woman that hated bathtubs, particularly hotel bathtubs. we still have a lot of unanswered questions about why she was unattended and what people were thinking about what was going on in her life. >> it does seem pretty strange set of affairs given what the family was saying. in the end, drew, just a terrible tragedy. we lost one of the great entertainers in the world, another victim of addiction. >> that's exactly right. >> drew, thanks very much for joining me. we also have breaking news in the trayvon martin case. police chief bill lee says he's stepping down temporarily in the wake of trayvon. a rally in florida tonight drew close to 1,000 people. the teenager's parents demanded an arrest and conviction in the murder of their son. john zarrella is live for us there in sanford. john, a lot of anger, very understandable anger. how would you describe the mood? what do people expect to happen? is the guy that shot this young boy going to get arrested?
>> reporter: well, we don't know if he'll get arrested or when he'll get arrested. we don't even know where he is, piers. clearly the message at this massive rally led by reverend al sharpton that came down, the message from these people was that anything short of the arrest of george zimmerman is not going to be good enough. the police chief stepping down today was not good enough. there was news out of tallahassee today that the governor and the attorney general have appointed a new prosecutor to look into this case, removing the prosecutor here in seminole county from the equation so there's more complete transparency. the crowd here saying that's not enough. again, the only thing these people will be satisfied with is the ultimate arrest of george zirmman. >> it does seem extraordinary
that an arrest is not at least being seriously considered. this whole debate about the stand your ground law, that debate is raging ever more furiously. >> reporter: no doubting. part of what the governor announced today was after this investigation is over here that what he will then do immediately is appoint a task force that's going to look into among other things the stand your ground law. piers. >> well, that family wants justice and i hope they get it soon. john zarrella, thank you very much indeed. now to politics. newt gingrich, the former speaker, is kicking his flagging campaign into overdrive ahead of the louisiana primary on saturday and taking aim at front runner mitt romney. he joins me now. mr. speaker, how are you? >> i'm doing well, how are you? >> i'm going to come back to the campaign in just a moment. i do want to ask you about this
increasingly controversial story involving the shooting of trayvon martin. it seems to be -- i wouldn't even say dividing america. america seems to be pretty well on the same page here. what has happened here is an outrage. what is your view? >> well, my view is that the local district attorney is doing exactly the right thing. he's taking it to the grand jury. i'm sure he's going to present the evidence and not just the 911 call but the previous 911 calls and the fact that the police have been dealing with this guy apparently for a year. i think that i have faith that the american system of justice will in fact work and that this is why you have a balance between the police and the district attorney. the district attorney has the ability to step in and say wait a second, let's look at this again. they're clearly doing that. the police chief himself has been suspended. i think that americans can recognize that while this is a tragedy, and it is a tragedy, that we are going to relentlessly seek justice and i think that's the right thing to
do. >> isn't this stand your ground law a lot of nonsense, dangerous nonsense that's now being abused left, right and center by people who just want to shoot people? >> i think, piers, you just took an enormous jump. that's like cities that have rules that even if somebody breaks into your house you can't defend yourself. both extremes taken in the wrong direction are false. clearly you should have a right to defend yourself in your own home and clearly somebody should -- it should not be translating standing their own ground into pushing somebody else. and that's what's going to come down to the question here. the young man apparently was not following the person who's being investigated. apparently the man, the shooter, was following the young man. now that's not a stand your own ground, that's a chase the other person into their ground. i think you're going to find that the law as interpreted normally doesn't apply to this case. but again, you and i are talking, without hearing the
grand jury evidence, without having listened to the various experts, without having reviewed the material, that's why i prefer -- let's let the district attorney move forward, let the grand jury reach a decision. if they decide to indict him, it will go to trial and i think we will all see that the system of justice will work. >> let's get back to the campaign. what people are saying is, look, newt gingrich cannot win the nomination. he's putting up a great fight. he's been dead and buried and rolled back and dead and buried and rolled back but right now it looks almost impossible that you can win. why are you staying in the race? and secondly, at what point politically does it become damaging to you to continue to stay in the race if the current rate of delegate gains and state wins by mitt romney continues at the pace that it's now happening? >> well, there are three answers. first, i'm staying in the race because i believe we ought to have a conservative who's
serious, who's had national achievements and who doesn't write his policy on an etch-a-sketch and zigzag back and forth wildly. i've had a consistent, conservative policy going all the way back to barry goldwater in 1964 when i was a college student. i have been actively involved in the conservative movement. i stand for the same things year after year. i think the most recent comments by governor romney's communications director should worry every conservative in the country if they think you can shake the etch-a-sketch and end up with a brand new general election campaign which could be a total disaster in my judgment. second, we have 176,000 donors. people walk up to me every single day and beg me to stay in the race. every single event we go to, people thank me for having the courage to stay in the race. and third, there may be a morning governor romney has a majority of the delegates. that morning isn't here. given mistakes like this week, given the fact that when he did win illinois with less than a
majority of the vote it was the lowest turnout in 70 years, i mean every republican who wants to beat obama should be worried by the fact the romney victories come by drowning them out with negative advertising. he will not be able to do this to obama and it makes me worry about what kind of a general election candidate he will be. >> let's take a short bleak and we'll come back and talk about robert de niro has branded you a hypocrite. i want to get your reaction. i want healthy skin for life. [ female announcer ] improve the health of your skin with aveeno daily moisturizing lotion. the natural oatmeal formula improves skin's health in one day, with significant improvement in 2 weeks. i found a moisturizer for life. [ female announcer ] only from aveeno. the day starts with arthritis pain...
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what i am so bothered about is the behavior of people like gingrich. dwrich is gingrich is just a hypocrite. you know, and that's a waste of energy for all of us. and he's -- he's said publicly the president shouldn't have to apologize to anybody. it's just nonsense. >> robert de niro taking a pot shot at newt gingrich today over the first lady joke that's been in the news this week. newt gingrich, how do you respond to the charge from hollywood's great actors, that you are a hypocrite? >> well, first of all, no matter what words go back and forth between us, callista and i were delighted to be at the kennedy center honors when he was honored. he is one of our greatest actors. i truly admire his professional work even if i don't like him in politics.
he just took two things. this is a classic hollywood lack of logical thought. i said the president of the united states should not apologize to our enemies while they are killing young americans. now that's a very specific reference to a very specific situation. the commander in chief owes it to the troops under his command to stand with them. and i thought the president made a tremendous mistake during the killings in afghanistan, but here were people who were killing young americans and he's apologizing to them. that has nothing to do with requesting that robert de niro who the white house itself said, said that he said the wrong things. took three perfectly fine women and compared them to michelle obama in a way that basically talked about white first ladies. i made two points. first, it was really the wrong thing for him to say and the white house apparently has agreed.
and second, this campaign isn't about first ladies. i'm not running against michelle obama. i'm not running -- and i think that ann romney and karen santorum and callista gingrich are perfectly fine as potential first ladies. i happen to have a preference for callista, but the point is this is about michelle's husband. this is about the president of the united states. i'm running to be president of the united states. i and i just thought that de niro's quote was in bad taste. if it had been a conservative talk radio show host who said exactly the same thing but reversed the racial reference, the left would have exploded with rage. but of course if it's one of their own and after all it's only attacking republicans, that's perfectly appropriate because anybody on the left, as bill maher has proven, can say anything they want to about anyone and still give a million dollars and after all who are we to judge those on the left who are so morally superior that their use of language is always correct. >> but isn't there slight danger of you being over pious here, mr. speaker?
>> i'm not being pious. >> he was basically coming out with what i would call a reverse racism joke. the reason i say you may be a little too serious about this, ann romney was on my show last night and she made a point of saying i actually found it funny. i didn't find it offensive. i think america is getting way too politically correct. and you seem to be leading this charge, mr. speaker. now, i know you quite well now. you have a great sense of humor. did you really feel offended by robert de niro or was it just a chance to whack a democrat? >> i really think the use of racism by democrats is just as bad as the use of racism by republicans and i really think it's wrong to use racial references like that, period. i think -- you know, as i said, just try saying exactly the same phrase but reverse the reference. imagine that somebody had said in the funniest possible way in
2008 that america wasn't ready for a black first lady, you'd have had an explosion of outrage. >> hang on, hang on. this is the whole point, though. the whole point of de niro's comment, his joke, was precisely because many people were saying that kind of thing very seriously about michelle obama. so he was flipping the racial -- >> oh, okay. so flipping it -- i just want to make clear here, piers. flipping it is always okay because it's the left flipping it. so when the left says things, it's always okay. one of the things i'm controversial is i'm happy to stand toe to toe with the left. when they want to engage in cultural fights, i'm happy to. do you want to explain bill maher the same way? >> i actually think -- it's interesting you mention him because he wrote a very good piece in "the new york times" today precisely about america's collective humor. i thought he was completely wrong with the language he used
about sarah palin in the same way rush limbaugh was totally wrong with his language. but i just wonder when you first heard what robert de niro said, whether you really were offended, because i'm not sure you would have been. >> i really do think that it's occasionally okay for conservatives to stand up and say we don't like being smeared, and i really do think the language he was using is typical. look, i get it. i understand where you're coming from. it was not a gigantic thing. it was a very specific one-time thing. the white house itself agreed his language was inappropriate. that's what they said. so maybe you have an argument with the white house over this, because they said he was inappropriate. but i just think it's interesting that if you try to have some level of policing of the left's language, suddenly you're lacking a sense of humor. come on, you know me too well, that's baloney. i just said i like de niro, i
think he's a great actor. i'd much rather have a conversation with him some day about the wonderful things he's done than be involved in this long distance baloney. but his reference to me as a hypocrite took totally out of context something which was very serious, which is a commander in chief apologizing to people who were killing young americans. >> let's move to rick santorum, because -- if rick santorum wasn't there, if he was to stand aside, do you think you'd have a better shot at mitt romney? everyone is saying that to him about you, but the same applies to you, isn't it? >> it applies both ways. but i also think to some extent we've actually, i think, split romney's attention. he has always had an ability to drown us with negative advertising. you'll remember i was actually in first place until we got drowned first in iowa. then i came back and was in first place after winning south carolina and then they spent $20 million in three weeks in florida to redrown me.
that was the process in which rick emerged because he was the guy running fourth and romney wasn't paying any attention to him. rick then got a really good bounce and ran, i think, a very positive campaign for a while. now he's suffering a similar kind of challenge. the question is whether or not between us ron paul and rick and i can get enough votes to stop romney from having an absolute majority. if he -- romney's challenge is simple. if he does not get an absolute majority having run for six years, putting in $40 million of his own money, outraised us in the super pac, if he doesn't have a majority, we're moving toward an open convention and then it's anybody's game. if he does get the majority, he'll be the republican nominee and have won it in a very, very hard contest. >> critics of that position would say the last thing the republicans need is to get to the convention and have open season. that just plays completely into barack obama's hands.
>> that would be the most exciting 60 days of civic participation in the age of facebook and youtube. i mean you would be in hog's heaven. every night would be exciting. the convention would be the most exciting convention in modern times. and whoever became the nominee would have the highest attendance, the highest viewership in history for their acceptance speech and we would have compressed the obama attack machine to 60 days. they would only have 60 -- the danger for the republicans is if we pick a nominee early enough, that gives obama's billion dollars a long time to work on defining that candidate. remember, the republican candidate was picked much earlier in 2008 and barack obama and hillary clinton fought it out until mid-june. didn't seem to hurt obama. >> speaker gingrich, i admire your fortitude. i like de niro a lot. >> thanks for joining us. >> thank you. when we come back, tebow mania is headed to the big apple.
i'll talk to the legendary new york jets quarterback, joe namath. he's called it all a publicity stunt. this could be interesting. this greek yogurt. i amg i like yoplait. it is yoplait. but you said it was greek. mmhmm. so is it greek or is it yoplait? exactly. okay... [ female announcer ] yoplait. it is so greek.
but apparently some jets players are not happy about it. yeah, they're called wide receivers. no way, i'm never going to see the ball. >> that was nbc's late night jimmy fallon last night. yes, tim tebow is headed to the new york jets, but will america's poster boy play. this is a world exclusive interview with a living legend, the one and only broadway joe, joe namath. joe, welcome. >> thank you, piers. good to be with you, buddy. >> i have never known my staff been more excited than when we booked you today, the exclusive on tim tebow. so thank you for making all their days and all their dreams come true. >> well, thank you. and my best to your staff. >> now, let's talk tim tebow, because i'm getting a sense you're not quite as thrilled about all this as a lot of people in new york are. tell me why. >> well, i was surprised, first of all. you know, the jets had recently
given mark sanchez an extension on his contract and the jets also recently signed a backup quarterback. being a former quarterback, you know, you'd like to be able to put some trust in what you're being told. and i think this caught mark sanchez by surprise, it caught the team by surprise, a lot of us by surprise with the news that tebow is coming to town. now, i want to say something here, piers, tebow has wonderful fans because he's a wonderful guy and he can play. i got a report from my home in pennsylvania that my nephews are very excited that tebow is going to be a jet, all right? >> let's get to the but, joe, come on. >> when i look at it as a quarterback and i put myself in mark sanchez's place, i don't like it. >> yeah. >> i do not like it.
the only way this wildcat offense comes into play is if you've got a problem with your offense. that's what happened with miami, that's what happened with the jets early in mark's career when they had brad smith who could run the wildcat formation, and that's what happened out at denver. tebow, as fine a dude as you want to find, he's just not a good passer. your quarterback has to be able to pass the ball. now, what are they going to do during practice in the fall? are they going to tell sanchez, move over, because now we have to give tebow and the wildcat formation time to practice. you've got to understand it's going to be a problem. >> the other thing i want to ask you, you're the perfect guy for this. traditionally the jets famous quarterbacks led by you have always been brutally known as naughty boys. you like to work hard, play hard. tim tebow is about as far removed from that as i can possibly imagine.
he's a god-fearing, christian, well behaved young man. he is not broadway joe, is he? >> well, i tell you, the way the jets have played recently, they need the good lord on their side. so this could be a major move, yes. >> so you don't think it will be too much temptation for him coming to a city like new york? >> oh, hey, this young man, i've had had the pleasure of watching him work since he started college in florida. i know his history with his parents and the kind of guy he is. i don't know anyone that doesn't have a special feeling about tim tebow. however, to win a championship in the national football league, you've got to be able to throw the ball accurately fairly consistently from the pocket. now, he's got to prove that. he hasn't proven that yet. otherwise he'd be playing somewhere else on a regular basis.
the thing is you don't bring in somebody -- you don't tell your starting quarterback, who's played three years and has gradually grown that he's the man and then you bring in somebody right behind him with an added formation that they're going to give teams trouble with, no. >> it does seem a pretty bad day to be mark sanchez, i must say. let me ask you quickly about the other big nfl scandal story, this new orleans saints thing with the bounty. am i the only person in america that just assumes that everybody used to do this? i assumed there would have been bounties on your head every game you ever played. is this just kind of a dressing room jokey thing that's got completely misreported, misunderstood? what just what lads do in that dressing room? let's go and get broadway joe? isn't that part of the game? >> well, it's part of the game when you don't intentionally want to maim someone, when you don't intentionally say we need
to knock this guy out and you're going to get a bonus if he's carried off the field or you're going to get a different bonus if he has to leave the game. no, it's awful. you do not put bounties on players. the game is still played by the rules and the players are supposed to respect one another, not take cheap shots. and, you know, putting a bounty on brett favre, for example, in the 2010 championship game, that stinks. what do the young kids, what do the kids in high school, junior high, the younger kids and the coaches coaching these guys, are they going to teach these young guys that this is what we do. we're going to knock that star out and you're going to get an extra milk shake. no, man, that's wrong. the offensive side of the ball doesn't work that way. any team i was on, the 12 years with the jets, the year with the rams, no. we weren't privy of that. now, was our defense doing it?
not to my knowledge. never heard about it. >> okay, joe. well, listen, i feel like i shouldn't cut you off because you're such a legend. i want you to have as much time as you'd like but sadly the clock ticks even for you, joe. it's been a real pleasure and an honor to be on the show. do come back again one time. >> i'd love to. thank you, piers. >> take care. all the very best. legendary joe namath, what a privilege that was. when we come back, another privilege for me. two of the great tv pioneers, maury povich and connie chung on their lives on tv news and as husband and wife. very excited about this. [ man ] ring ring... progresso this reduced sodium soup says it may help lower cholesterol, how does it work? you just have to eat it as part of your heart healthy diet. step 1. eat the soup. all those veggies and beans, that's what may help lower your cholesterol and -- well that's easy [ male announcer ] progresso. you gotta taste this soup.
this is maury povich at los angeles international airport. we'll be reporting on the crash of the big dc-10 that took two lives and injured more than 50 and we'll have exclusive film of this crash moments after it occurred. >> also tonight, it's been raining throughout southern california today and a new storm is on the way. >> that was shocking, raining in southern california. connie chung and maury povich both working in l.a. back in 1978. he went on to host "a current affair." she was the first asian american to anchor a network newscast and only the second woman and they both join me now. welcome. >> thank you. >> how long have you been two been married? >> 20 something. >> 7. >> and you're still holding hands. >> well, yeah.
>> yeah. >> is this because you're nervous or you still love each other. >> no, no, no, we're all right. we're okay. >> in fact i think i'm going to take a nap right now. >> i've got a confession to make. when i was a young newspaperist back in britain, they used to get the cps early evening news and it was you and dan rather. >> no! oh, my god. >> it was a lot more fun when someone said, of course you know they don't get on very well. i was really? >> where did they get that? i can't imagine. >> was it true? >> oh, listen, he was so nice to me, really. >> connie. >> okay. well, you know, it was what it was. >> dan was doing it. then he was sort of told you were coming on board. >> and he had to move over a few inches. >> and he wouldn't have liked that. >> no, no, no. so i can perfectly understand why he wanted to kill me.
>> no one would like that, i guess, if you're used to having your own show like that. >> exactly. so he was usually very cordial. >> he comes on this show and he's a great man. i don't want to cause any more problems now that it's been clearly a long time since i used to watch this. >> they're very friendly towards each other when they see each other. >> i saw him once on a train going to washington. i was thinking people are going to say where are they going, what are they doing together? i'll just tell them that we're looking at a home for, you know, retired anchor people. >> now let's talk about news and politics. obviously you live in new york. tim tebow. >> oh, my god. >> are you excited about this? >> i feel so bad for mark sanchez. it's so wrong. >> he's got a point, joe namath. if you're the quarterback and just signed a new deal and you've been groomed the last three years and suddenly they bring in tim tebow.
this is not good news, is it? >> well, i tell you, i used to do sports years ago and i love sports. john elway is an acquaintance of mine. and i think, you talk about this as a political year, the biggest political winner of all this year is john elway. because it was the only way, only possible way they could get those denver fans to bid goodbye to tebow. >> yeah. >> john, what a masterful stroke. >> i think the jets hiring tebow would be like if coach woodson of the new york knicks took jeremy lin out of the starting team. >> now you're showing your colors. you're a big fan of jeremy lin. >> let's move on. this serious story, i think it's a horrible story, the trayvon martin case. >> oh, yes. >> i'm sure that if you were still doing the news broadcast and you feel the same way i do. this whole thing of stand your
ground, allowing someone to just apparently follow after this unarmed kid and kill him and not even be arrested in america today? >> well, i saw andrea mitchell on that other cable station. >> the one we don't mention. >> doing a terrific interview with the city manager of stanford. >> sanford. >> sanford, sorry. thanks, honey. and she was really pressing him regarding the police chief and all that. now the police chief has stepped down. >> yeah, but what bothers me more is how does the florida supreme court allow that law? >> unbelievable. >> the law is just -- this is frontier justice. this is vigilanteism. >> there's been an explosion of cases since the law with more and more people. gang leaders killing other gang leaders and saying i was acting in self defense, i was standing my ground. >> you know, at the time when it was passed, they had no idea of how far reaching it would be. i mean even i think -- i think jeb bush was governor at the time, correct me if i'm wrong,
but i think that even he had supported it and had no idea -- >> somebody we like. >> absolutely. i'm astounded. i mean it's really beyond comprehension. >> i can't imagine this case is not going to lead to the stand your ground law being repealed. i just think it's crazy, crazy, isn't it? >> now, of course, the way they're going to get around it is the u.s. justice department is going to come in and probably find some kind of charge. >> let's take a little break and we'll talk politics. i want to ask you whose camp you're in, gingrich or de niro. this is the big story of the night. ♪ you are my sunshine, my only sunshine ♪ ♪ you make me happy when skies are gray ♪ [ female announcer ] you know exactly what it takes to make them feel better. ♪ you make me happy [ female announcer ] that's why you choose children's tylenol. the same brand your mom trusted for you
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at meineke i have options... like oil changes starting at $19.95. my money. my choice. my meineke. you are the father. >> in the case of 3-year-old trayvon, darren, you are not. >> maury povich and his hit daytime show. that was a signature segment, who's the daddy. i'm back with the daddy, maury povich and connie chung. this is incredible. you're 73 years old. >> yeah. >> 65. >> 65. >> it was a good secret until now. >> amazing.
>> he's drying up and i'm leaking. >> thank you. where did you get that from? >> maury, what i like about you, you've done this show for 21 seasons. ratings continue to go up. >> the best ever. >> and you said this. people attacked you and said how could a serious news guy go and do this. you said this. you just don't know me. i could be like you the rest of my life. i decided not to be. i could be an elite journalist. for christ sake i was for a lock time. it's not the end all and be all. i've always felt this. i hate the snobbery from serious news people towards anyone who branches out. >> especially since the both of us grew up in washington, d.c. >> yeah. >> when politics and news was in our blood, it was a government town. we did a lot of that back then. and connie always says to me, you know -- >> why don't you do a talk -- an interview show like piers morgan
or whatever, you know, because he's a history buff, he's a political buff. you can ask him anything. >> exactly. >> and he knows the answer. and i don't. >> but i just say as long as connie knows it -- >> yeah. i know it, i'm fine. >> you've both had these -- 75 years of experience between you on television. i want to ask you both, what's been the greatest moment of your tv career? both of you. >> well, i don't know about you, but i will tell you. i still to this day, because i think i'm a child of the cold war, a post -- you know, born before world war ii but lived mostly after world war ii, covering the fall of the berlin wall was the greatest moment i have spent in all story telling of my career. >> it was an amazing moment. >> it was something that, a, i never thought would happen. i wouldn't have thought it "a," i never thought would have happened.
i wouldn't have thought it would happen in my children's lifetime. for that thing to come down and the soviet union to just evaporate, it was incredible. >> and connie, the day you stopped working with dan rather or -- [ laughter ] >> we were going around the dinner table one time and somebody said, what was the roughest, you know, manual labor job or whatever and i said working with dan rather. >> i have heard you say, that he was actually your greatest -- the greatest you'd ever get was richard nixon. >> it was true. it was at the height of watergate and i was -- actually, i was probably going in to keep the white house seat warm for dan. because i was a cub reporter. i was walking into the white house on the west wing, where the press entrance is. and he's there. and there's secret service around him, you know, so i approach slowly and all the press starts pouring out of the press room. i started asking him questions. it was fascinating because the secret service kept everybody else back. >> you got the scoop. >> no, no.
you know what he said to me? i kept asking him watergate questions and he wouldness answer. the only thing he said to me was how much money do you make? and i said, $25,000. and he said, you should try to get more money. [ laughter ] isn't that strange? >> that's president nixon for you. >> watergate was a big one for me. then if you take this case in florida, one of the stories that really did my heart good was it was a 1960s murder. civil rights murder. we found out that the men who -- a black farm hand was killed and the man who was charged with his murder got off. we found out that it was -- that the murder occurred on federal land, so the fbi arrested him. he was indicted -- >> 40 years later. >> 40 years later. convicted and sent to prison. >> great story. >> and you know to affect some kind of change -- that's what turned me on.
>> talk of turning you on, whose side you on, newt gingrich or robert de niro? >> first of all, robert de niro's partner is our neighbor, jane rosenthal's a friend of ours. i don't know. i just -- i'm so -- i'm upset at the year. i just don't -- i think it could have been so much better. there are so many issues, and i just think one of the reasons why i'm kind of glad i'm not doing news is it's just -- there's too much venom. i mean -- >> vicious, isn't it? >> i mean, i really believe -- i mean, reagan -- ronald reagan believed in the 11th amendment. you don't go around calling your opponents lightweights. you just don't do that. >> i can talk to you two a lot more than unfortunately we have time for. will you come back? >> absolutely. >> i'd love to talk to you about america and politics. please come back. it's been a real pleasure.
give me a fist pump. thank you very much. >> you're so cool. >> they still love each other. only in america. >> where did you get that? >> dan rather. [ tom ] we invented the turbine business right here in schenectady. without the stuff that we make here, you wouldn't be able to walk in your house and flip on your lights. [ brad ] at ge we build turbines that power the world. they go into power plants which take some form of energy, harness it, and turn it into more efficient electricity. [ ron ] when i was a kid i wanted to work with my hands, that was my thing. i really enjoy building turbines. it's nice to know that what you're building is gonna do something for the world. when people think of ge, they typically don't think about beer. a lot of people may not realize that the power needed to keep their budweiser cold and even to make their beer comes from turbines made right here. wait, so you guys make the beer? no, we make the power that makes the beer. so without you there'd be no bud? that's right.
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because one thing for sure. i'm going to offend somebody. in the next couple of minutes. someone is going to be really upset. when did a harmless joke become a criminal offense? on the left, on the right, or on the gop campaign trail and any attempt at humor is met with instant ferocious condemnation and into the groveling apologies and desperate pleas for forgiveness. look at robert de niro. he had some fun with a joke about the wives of republican candidates. asking the crowd, do you really think our country is ready for a white first lady? may not have been the funniest joke in the world, but what it was quite obviously was a joke. a light hearted flip that mrs. obama had to put up with in reverse from certain quarters in deadly seriousness in most of the last election campaign. it was not as some tried to portray it an offensive racial slur by robert de niro. and yesterday, newt gingrich
labelled them as divisive, almost compelling michelle obama's office to call them inappropriate. given this hideously correct overreaction, i expected mitt romney's wife ann, one of the targets of robert de niro to have a similar sense of humor, but then she said this. >> i took it for what it was, a joke. again, we take everything so seriously, we have to be so correct and everyone has got to apologize. we're all overreacting to so many things and making things so difficult. which means we have to watch every single word that comes out of our mouth. >> hallelujah. in one fell swoop of common sense, the whole indignant balloon popped. if i'm ann romney can laugh, why can't everybody else? bill maher cut to the heart of the nonsense.
this is what he said. in a country where nobody can say anything offensive ever again. he's pleading to stop all the apologizing. he said this. let's have an amnesty on every made up, fake, totally insincere, hurt, insult, affront. let's make this sunday the national day of no outrage. i couldn't agree more. this doesn't mean people should be free to be homophobic or bigoted or rush limbaugh and even bill maher should be held up, but the co-workers, your neighbors, let's just get a grip shall we, instead of pretending to take imaginary offense. have a laugh. go on. robert de niro as ann romney said was being funny. that's it. and that is it for us tonight.