tv The Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer CNN May 3, 2012 4:00pm-6:00pm EDT
direct message to president obama. so is mitt romney. >> also, newt gingrich is in "the situation room" with us this hour. what was the big of the mistake of his failed campaign? what about the harsh statements he made about mitt romney? we'll talk about that and a lot more. a new terror tactic revealed wild fires. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com we begin with new developments in a growing diplomatic crisis dogging the obama administration. the chinese dissident who escaped house arrest and sought refuge, but the u.s. embassy in beijing is now appealing directly to president obama for help. chen guangcheng was basically
pushed out of the embassy and abandoned, but the top american diplomat in china tells cnn a very different account of what happened. cnn's stan grant is in beijing and has been following this story from the beginning. dramatic developments, huge interest at stake, stan. you had a chance to speak with the u.s. ambassador gary locke about all of this. what is the very latest? >> reporter: yes. he is gary locke, the man with the answers about what went wrong at the embassy. chen guangcheng said he was encouraged to leave and without knowing the full range of his threat that the family was posing. i sat down with the ambassador to get his side of the story. here's what he had to say. >> reporter: ambassador gary locke is the man in the hot seat, to answer a crucial question did the united states fail chen guangcheng? >> we took extraordinary steps to retrieve him. we found out that he had escaped and was in beijing and wanted to
talk to us. we undertook almost like a mission impossible retrieval to pull him into the embassy. >> reporter: according to chen himself, that mission impossible is looking more like mission failure. chen, a blind activist who fled what he called brutal house arrest to take refuge in the u.s. embassy more than a week ago tells cnn he wishes he never left the dip the maic compound. in an interview yesterday he accused embassy officials of encouraging him to go and then deserting him at a beijing hospital. the embassy kept lobbying me to leave, he said. they promised to be with me at the hospital, but this afternoon, soon after we got here they were all gone. locke maintains that embassy officials have been back to the hospital several times to see chen. >> when we spoke to chen guangcheng he made it very clear he changed his mind and wishes he never left the embassy. do you now wish you never aloud
him to leave. >> it was very clear all along. he wanted to be reunified with his family and he wanted to stay in china to be a freedom fighter. >> reporter: well, that was then. chen is now appealing to president obama to get his family out. he wants to go to the united states and he's even said to president barack obama in the interview we have with him, please president barack obama, do everything you can to get me out of this country. >> it's apparent he's had a change of heart. >> reporter: he was very explicit. >> well, i understand. he says he wants to leave this country and he's in fear of his life. >> we need to first have that conversation with him and we need to make sure what his desires are and we'll take that up and start discussing that. we need to explore all of the options. >> reporter: ambassador locke was by chen's side every step of the way as he left the embassy. time and again he told me this was chen's own decision. >> and we said what is your choice? what do you want to do? are you ready to leave and we
just stopped, and then two minutes later he jumped up beaming, excited, happy and says let's go. >> reporter: chen guangcheng remains in his hospital bed. his wife and children alongside him, but they fear being sent back to their village where they were held for 18 months after chen served four years in jail for a crime he said he did not commit. he said guards there warned his wife they'd be waiting with weapons. his only choice, he says is to leave china. >> reporter: now the difficulty is how to get out of this country? ambassador locke said to seek asylum first chen would have to be on u.s. soil. that would include the american embassy. ironically, the very place that chen walked away from. mission impossible indeed, wolf. >> how is this affecting hillary clinton's visit to beijing? timothy geithner, the treasury secretary is with the secretary of state, as well. it comes at a rather awkward
moment, all of this. >> reporter: you know, they came here to talk trade and that's a contentious issue enough, of course, with china, this rising economy threatening to overtake the united states in the next couple of decades. they have their issues there, but this has been completely overshadow overshadowed. we hadn't heard much from secretary clinton. she did talk about the issue of human rights and we're expecting to hear more from her in the next 24 hours and there have been suggestions that chen wants to leave on the secretary of state's plane when she leaves beijing on the weekend. >> that would be dramatic if the chinese would allow him to do that. we'll stay in close touch with you. thank you. >> the white house is facing growing questions about the diplomatic crisis, but it's backing up the account of the u.s. ambassador gary locke. >> at no point during his time in the embassy did mr. chen ever request political asylum in the u.s. and at every opportunity he expressed his desire to stay in
china, unify with his family and stay in his country. all of our diplomacy was directed at putting him in the best possible position to achieve his objectives. >> the republican presidential candidate mitt romney is mincing no words in assessing this current crisis. listen to this. >> it's also apparent according to these reports if they're accurate that our embassy failed to put in place the very phiable measures that would ensure the safety of mr. chen and his family. if these reports are true, this is a dark day for freedom and it's a day of shame for the obama administration. >> u.s. officials in beijing, they say they'll try to stay in touch with chen. we'll see what happens, but the stakes clearly are enormous. we're also getting new information just coming into
"the situation room right now. face book's initial public offering. ali velshi is standing by. what are you hearing? >> i'm working on some numbers because there are conflicting numbers. the shares will start trading on may 18 between now and may 18 facebook is going out with morgan stanley. they'll go to hedge funds and mutual funds and they say we'll give you guys an opportunity to buy our shares and they've set the target price between $28 and $35. that is the price at which these institutions will be able to buy the stock. that is not the price that the public is likely to be able to buy this stock. what happens is depending on how in demand these shares are, the night before it starts trading, the night of may 17th, they will issue a price at which that stock begins trading and that will be the price that facebook trades out on the first day. this is generally an indication that it should be at the low end $28 and at the high end if everybody wants a piece of the action $25. i'll tell you what that does for
the company, it gives facebook a valuation if it comes in at the high end of the range. if it comes up at $35 a stock, and facebook will have our calculation of $75 billion. so $75 billion company. quite remarkable to see that kind of valuation for the first time, wolf. >> that sounds relatively reasonable. $28 to $25 a share. look at what apple is doing, for example, right now. google, so the key question is should folks out there who are watching plan on buying this stock? well, remembera i lot of these offerings and think about google which came out at $85 and closed its first day $100 and a year later was at $280 and has kept on going. here's the way you should think about it, wolf? should you buy the stock at the right price? sure. you are you likely to buy at this range? probably not.
understand that's the range and you'll likely have to buy it at a range. buy it at a fair price. >> thank you. jack cavery is standing by right now, he's got "the cafferty file." no secret, it's shaping up to be a ties race between president obama and mitt romney especially in the crucial swing states and new polls show romney closing in on the president in both florida and ohio. the quinnipiac poll shows romney up by a poll in florida, 44-43 and the president up by two points in ohio, 44-42. president obama has widened his lead over romney to eight points, 47 to 49. keep in mind no one has won the white house since 1960 without carrying at least two of these three states. pollsters say some of romney's gains come in voter perception that he's as good as or better than president obama when it
comes to fixing the economy. for millions of americans, the economy will be issue one come november. a recent pugh poll shows 86% of registered voters say the economy will be very important to their vote while 80% cite jobs. other top issues include the economy, deficit, health care, energy and taxes. at the bottom of the list come immigration, abortion, birth control and gay marriage. wouldn't it be nice for a change if the politicians took note and stayed away from the wedge issues like abortion and gay marriage this year and instead talked about what merely concerns most people? meanwhile, there are those two key supreme court decisions that are due out in june which could throw the national focus right back on health care and immigration. here's the question. what issue or issues will ultimately decide the presidential election?
go to cnn.com/cafferty file or go to the situation room's facebook page. >> i'll give our viewers a clue, unless there is a national security crisis, a war on terror or another war, it's the economy, and that is going to be the key issue. i think everybody appreciates that. that's just my clue, jack. >> well, i think you're probably right. you may be on to something there. >> maybe. maybe. thank you. mitt romney is out to win over social conservatives and why he may be in for a bumpy ride. also, he's just given up his bid for the whois. what's news gingrich's big -- i'll ask him. and love letters from barack obama long before he was president, long before he was in public office. two ex-girlfriends sharing their personal stories. stand by. (spoken in mandarin)
i've still got hours of battery life. it's an ultrabook. you bring great shame upon this coffee hut. with a long-lasting ultrabook, everything else seems old fashioned. ultrabook. inspired by intel. departure. hertz gold plus rewards also offers ereturn-- our fastest way to return your car. just note your mileage and zap ! you're outta there ! we'll e-mail your receipt in a flash, too. it's just another way you'll be traveling at the speed of hertz. ♪ ♪ wow... ♪ [ female announcer ] sometimes, all you need is the smooth, creamy taste
i'm michael bazinet, president of creative digital imaging of bangor, maine. we have customers all over the united states. we rely on the postal service for everything that we do. the eastern maine processing facility is vital to our operation and our success. if we lose this processing facility we could lose clientele because of increased mailing times. we would have to consider layoffs as a result of that. closure of this plant will affect all of us. ♪
>> first there was former governor tim pawlenty and then rick perry and now congresswoman michele bachmann, the latest in the string of former campaign rivals to back mitt romney for president of the united states. endorsements, though, can only help so much. let's discuss what's going on. jim acosta is joining us. romney certainly has his work cut out for him, doesn't he? he sure does, wolf. looking at his schedule, it is no secret mitt romney is trying to rally social conservatives, but for now it's a work in progress and something republicans do while running for the nomination, not after it's locked up. >> good morning! >> reporter: mitt rom no was doing more than just sizing up a new running mate in virginia governor bob mcdonald and taking shots at the president's new one-word campaign slogan forward. >> if the last three and a half years are his definition of forward i'd hate to see what
backward looks like. >>. >> reporter: he's out to win social conservatives picking up the endorsement of his one-time rival michele bachmann. >> this is what victory looks like! >> reporter: bachmann predicted romney couldn't win. >> he is the only governor in the history of the united states that has put into place socialized medicine in his state. >> reporter: this week the presumptive gop nominee has taken hits from e vafrngel cal leaders who were outraged offer richard grenell, a supporter of seym-sex marriage who happens to be gay. his resignation prompted one blog tore declare victory. >> i will flat-out guarantee you he is not going make this mistake again. there is no way in the world that mitt romney is going to put a homosexual activist in any position of importance in his campaign. >> it did send a message. i don't think it was an in-your-face message, it could have been an oversight, but
nonetheless, a troubling oversight. >> the recent conservative backlash was partly because evangelicals don't trust romney who changed his position on abortion or other issues. >> he has basically checked all of the conservative boxes on the issues of life and marriage and family, but his past policy positions are still, you know, kind of cloud that. >> reporter: romney is trying to mend fences fast, sending top aides to meet with newt gingrich and setting up a private session with rick santorum. the gop contender went behind closed doors with conservative bloggers, all part of an effort to improve relation with the republican base. >> do i believe the supreme court should overturn roe v. wade? yes. >> reporter: nobody is enjoying the run to the right more than dell democrats that have a new web video that seeks to sound the alarm for women voters? some women across virginia are outraged as governor bob mcdonald signs bill seeking an
abortion to first undergo an ultrasound. >> reporter: social conservatives say romney's next test comes in a little more than a week when he speaks to the liberty university, but the romney campaign is not concerned. it's confident the gop is motivated and unified to program in the fall. >> thanks very much, jim acosta. let's dig a little bit deeper right now with our chief, political analyst gloria borger. no surprise romney has been spending callet time in virginia. >> virginia is one of those battleground states that republicans think they can win back because it's historically republican. barack obama won it last time around and george w. bush won it in 2000, 2004, the republican governor there right now. the most recent polls show it's a dead heat with romney up just a touch, but there are other swing states both sides are paying attention to. take a look at our little map here which we'll be being
looking at. the states in yellow are our swing states. wolf, we just mentioned the state of virginia, indiana and north carolina are two more states that are traditionally republican like virginia. and then we see some of those others, arizona, and nevada, and those are some with hispanic voters that are really the key to winning those battleground states. romney's political action committee is already up with nine battleground states and the president's reelect is already up in six of those battleground states. so the money is starting to flow into those states. everybody who lives in a battleground state, get ready, because you're going to be seeing a lot of political ads. >> great moments for those tv stations and the owners. you want to be an owner of the tv station in those battleground
states because millions will be coming in. >> still key, always will be key, and as you pointed out before, the polls in those states are very, very close. the romney campaign believes that those two states are really must-wins for them because george bush won them again in 2000 and 2004. here ate good news for the romney campaign. there's a poll that asks the question in both ohio and florida of who would do a better job on the economy and look at that. romney in florida beats president obama and again, mitt romney is up in the state of ohio and you can see why he's going back to the economic message and trying to get away from the issues that bogged him down during the campaign and not just conservatives want him to talk about that. the economy is what's going to get him a win. >> it's the economy. >> i've heard that before, wolf. >> thank you. >> newt gingrich may be out of the presidential race, but he's
not done talking politics. i'll speak live with the former speaker. i'll ask him who he thinks mitt romney should think of his running mate. my interview with him coming up right here in "the situation room." high schools in six states enrolled in the national math and science initiative... ...which helped students and teachers get better results in ap courses. together, they raised ap test scores 138%. just imagine our potential... ...if the other states joined them. let's raise our scores. let's invest in our teachers and inspire our students. let's solve this. it's real milk full of calcium and vitamin d.
the incredible things he did to survive. stand by for that. >> congress is ready to go after a high-ranking obama administration official over the scandal in which federal agents led mexican drug cartels get illegal guns. new information coming in. and fresh evidence that osama bin laden was plotting destruction until the very, very end. what we're learning from the documents seized from his compound. they have been declassified. they've just been released. stand by. you're in "the situation room." it certain leigh was a roller coaster campaign for newt gingrich. at times he was written off only to bounce back with very strong debate performances and two critical primary win, but in the end, gingrich like the others was outspent and outgunned by mitt romney. the former house speaker dropped out of the race only 24 hours ago and newt gingrich is here in
"the situation room with us right now. mr. speaker, thanks very much. >> good to be with you. >> looking back first, what was the biggest mistake you made? >> i think not starting out very early and legg out the kind of agenda i laid out yesterday and sticking to it and ignoring the day to day political infighting and the day to day news stories because i think the more visionary i was the better we were doing including being the front-runner in december and the more i got sucked into daily politics the weaker we were. >> when we started off with a major speech and then you went to the greek islands and what was that all about? >> we were laying out for a year what we were going to do and how we were going to do it. all of that stuff got blown way out of proportion. i made a mistake in bringing in traditional consultants. >> what does that mean, traditional consultants? >> people who wanted to focus on raising money and wanted 30-second attack ads. >> which is what mitt romney has, and worked out well.
>> romney can run the kind of campaign he wants to run and that wasn't the kind of run i wanted to run, and i wanted a campaign for the reason i was running was to develop a new generation of big solutions and it turned out to be much harder to bring that into the political conversation than i would have expected. >> the way he did it, basically spending a ton of money crushing you in iowa and then certainly after you won in south carolina and florida. they outspent you and tried to destroy your reputation. >> they ran a traditional campaign witha i lot of resources. he spent six years building a presidential campaign team, raising the money and building a financial network when they had to be with us they were, which may be good training for doing with barack obama this fall and the fact is that in the traditional boundaries of politics he'll be the nominee and i think you have to have some respect for the fact he was able to put it pth. >> he did it right, you did it
wrong? >> he was trying to do something different than i was and i thought it was possible to launch with a new media to put together the kind of campaign that was much, much more idea oriented and it turned out i wasn't able to do it. >> you shouldn't be surprised because you've been in politics for a long time. the obama-biden campaign now using your words in a new commercial hammering away at mitt romney. i'll play a clip. >> okay. >> the romney machine can drive downturnout, it can run over op bone notes with negative ads and doesn't seem capable of inspiring positive turnout and the result is i think very, very worrisome if you're thinking about the fall campaign. ♪ >> is he still the most anti-immigrant candidate? >> i think of the four of us, yes. >> are you calling mitt romney a liar? >> yes. ♪
>> obama/biden the truth team they call it. how do you like to see your words used in a campaign commercial like that to hammer away at mitt romney. >> you have a rough-and-tumble primary season and you'll get words like that. i think when mick cane tried to use hillary clinton's words against obama it didn't work all that well. the fact is you have a president with the worst unemployment record of any president since the great depression. you have a president with the highest price of gasoline of any president in american history on average. you have a president who is rung up huge deficits to crush the children and grandchildren with the level of debt we've never dreamed of before. this president will say anything to make sure we don't pay attention -- >> do you still believe romney is a liar? >> is mitt romney a liar? >> the governor said some things that weren't true? >> the answer is yes. >> i also believe that compared to barack obama i would trust mitt romney 100 times over.
>> that reference to him yesterday was sort of a lukewarm -- it wasn't an endorsement that you made. >> i said i want to campaign for him and he will point dramatically better judges than the president and he'll do a better job creating jobs than the president and he'll do far more to balance the budget and i went down the list of why mitt romney is better than barack obama. our choice isn't mitt romney or ronald reagan? would you consider an endorsement? >> i thought i was -- the only distinction i think people draw is at some point in the next couple of weeks mitt romney will be together and there will be some kind of endorsement. i tried to send any signal i could that if you were a conservative and you did not realize like barack obama and you had one choice that was mitt romney and we want to find a way to meet barack obama. >> you endorsed him even though there will be a more formal endorsement. have you been speaking with him and do you have a date yet? >> we don't have a specific date
when we'll do that, but i talked with the governor and met with his campaign manager and we're coordinating with his policy team and they've been very generous in pointing out on the issue of american energy independence i was way ahead of them and i developed a much more comprehensive plan and they were eager to work with us on those platforms. >> will we see mitt romney and newt gingrich together on the campaign trail? >> absolutely. >> will you campaign independently and go to areas where you are well liked? ? i will do everything i can to help defeat barack obama and to help elect a republican house and republican senate. >> you've emerged from this experience $4 million in debt? >> i will do a lot of meeting with people begging for help. >> begging? >> of course, when you are no longer in the race you go out and say here's what i did as a citizen and here's what i'm doing. i'd love to have your support. we've had a number of folks come through in the last few days saying they're proud i ran and they're proud that we tried and at newt.org we're getting a fair
amount of money coming in. >> who do you think should be on the short list for vice presidential running mate? >> you always have to consider three things. are they capable of being president? are they philosophically combatible and will they help you win, in that order? and that's the order you've got to think about it. i think he's got a pretty wide range. i think our bench is actually pretty deep. i think if you look at marco rubio. >> is he better to be president of the united states. he was great speaker of the house in florida. he's very knowledgeable. >> and bobby jindal, the governor, do you think he's ready to be president of the united states? >> absolutely. >> remember, again, he's been in government a long time and he's a smart guy, you know him. >> joe biden has ridden the train from delaware to washington for many, many years. >> i'm just saying. i think the comparison is do i think that bobby jindal or marco rubio would be as good as joe
biden. i also look at condy rice who brings a lot of talent to the potential. i would look at susana as a potential. you've got to have someone which the governor of indiana, which daniel which has been remarkably at center. >> that's why i'm saying we have a really deep bench now in a wi that you wouldn't have said six or eight or ten years ago. a whole new generation of people are competent. >> we're out of time, but take a look at this video. you see a young wolf blitzer and a young speaker of the house in new hampshire. that was on a show called "inside politics" weekend. i guess we both looked a lot younger in those days than we do now. >> that's almost cruel. >> the mid-90s. you have a very good archive system at cnn. >> excellent archive system.
>> we'll have you back. government security forces allegedly storm a major university in syria with deadly results. new information coming into "the situation room." in our next hour, get this, wildfires as a terror tactic. details of what an al qaeda leader is urging followers to do right now even from beyond the grave. uncover stronger, younger looking skin. [ female announcer ] new aveeno skin strengthening body cream helps transform dry, thinning skin, by strengthening its moisture barrier, for improved texture and elasticity in 2 weeks. reveal healthy, supple skin. aveeno skin strengthening.
# last season was the gulf's best tourism season in years. in florida we had more suntans... in alabama we had more beautiful blooms... in mississippi we had more good times... in louisiana we had more fun on the water. last season we broke all kinds of records on the gulf. this year we are out to do even better... and now is a great time to start. our beatches are even more relaxing... the fishing's great. so pick your favorite spot on the gulf... and come on down. brought to you by bp and all of us who call the gulf home. would you mind if to be i go ahead of you?omer. instead we had someone go ahead of him and win fifty thousand dollars.
congratulations you are our one millionth customer. people don't like to miss out on money that should have been theirs. that's why at ally we have the raise your rate 2-year cd. you can get a one-time rate increase if our two-year rate goes up. if your bank makes you miss out, you need an ally. ally bank. no nonsense. just people sense. four walls and a roof is a structure. what's inside is a home. home protector plus, from liberty mutual insurance, where the costs to both repair your house and replace what's inside are covered. and we don't just cut a check for the depreciated value -- we can actually replace your stuff with an exact or near match. and with the liberty mutual home gallery app, you can use a mobile device to easily catalog your belongings
in advance, so you're always well prepared. home protector plus, from liberty mutual insurance, so your life can settle right back into place. to get a free quote, call... visit a local office, or go to libertymutual.com today. liberty mutual insurance. responsibility. what's your policy? >> mary snow is monitoring some of the other top stories in "the situation room" right now including syrian troops. they are storming a university. what's going on? >> wolf, the opposition says at least seven people are dead and 28 wounded. syrian forces arrested 200 people and it's now been three weeks since the truce was signed. and the violence in syria continues.
here in the u.s., and here of the 13 suspects in the hazing death of florida a&m drum major robert champion was in police custody. they're turning themselves in one by one. 11 of the 13 faced felony charges, but none will be charged with murder. champion collapsed on a bus after an apparent hazing ritual. and a hundred more former football players are joining a lawsuit against the nfl. 1500 players already claim the league hit the danger of concussions saying the nfl denied there was a connection with a brain injury and didn't do enough to protect them from head injuries. the nfl says it's not true. wolf? >> mary, thank you. >> coming up, i write in my blog that it seems president obama's offering an olive branch to the taliban when it comes. will that come back to haunt him politically? we'll assess that and more in our strategy session and we're going through the documents seized from bin laden's compound. it looks like he was plotting to kill right up until the very end. carfirmation.
only hertz gives you a carfirmation. hey, this is challenger. i'll be waiting for you in stall 5. it confirms your reservation and the location your car is in, the moment you land. it's just another way you'll be traveling at the speed of hertz. never took life too seriously... till our son was born. that day, he bought life insurance. now there's no way i could send our boy to college without it. if there was one thing i could say to hank,
deal with the taliban. listen to this. >> in coordination with the afghan government, my administration has been in direct discussions with the taliban. they made it clear that they can be a part of this future if they break with al qaeda, renounce violence and abide by afghan laws. many members of the taliban from foot soldiers to leaders have indicated an interest in reconciliation. the path to peace is now set before them. those who refuse to walk it or face strong afghan strurity forces backed by the united states and our allies. >> two hours after air force one took off after bringing the president back to washington, the president launched a terror attack, kelling and injuring dozens of civilians. so much for renouncing violence. i want to focus, though, on the third condition laid out by the president that the taliban would have to abide by afghan laws which would be, for example,
respecting the rights of afghan women, including the right to get an education without having acid thrown in their faces. many afghan experts tell me they don't necessarily believe the taliban's extreme fundamentalist leadership right now or ever will genuinely accept this condition. let's discuss what's going on. the politics of all of this in our strategy session. joining us, the democratic strategist and cnn contributor donna brazile and cnn contributor eric ericsson. is that a smart move in this political season by the president? >> i think on the way out the door if we're going do something he's got to do that, but let's not kid ourselves that they'll take it. they'll either take it and renounce it or not take it. >> we're dealing with fundamentalist islamist extremist. they're not really people they can negotiate with and frankly,
that's the problem everybody has in washington, mitt romney and barack obama. we have a tiger by its tail. >> do you think it will come back to haunt the president, the statement and the olive branch that the president driver are delivered to the taliban, donna? >> no, wolf, look, the military leaders on the ground believe that our strong actions must be backed up with equally strong, diplomatic actions. we know there are some taliban leaders that have indicated an interest and in working with the afghan government and trying to find a political solution. so yes, we will continue to put our food on there next, and the military will do that, but we also have to continue to reach out to those leaders who are interested in helping us provide stability for that country so that we can have lasting peace. >> eric, i think you saw my interview with newt gingrich and he said yes, he did endorse mitt romney for president of the
united states. what did you think of that? >> it wasn't exactly an embracing endorsement. i'm still struck, you have newt gingrich endorsing mitt romney, but still doesn't really believe mitt romney. you have rick santorum who is defying conservatives today by endorsing john for nebraska when most conservatives and at least myself are going with the other guy and you still want to endorse mitt romney. this isn't coalescing mitt romney with a lot of people and the gingrich endorsement if that's an endorsement -- wow! >> he did acknowledge you and i asked if he still believes, donna that mitt romney is a liar which is what he said during his own presidential campaign. he basically said yea. >> well, he was referring to, i guess, some of governor romney's shifting positions on immigration, abortion and a number of other issues where during a campaign it was a bruising primary season. i was there with those debates and newt gingrich was rather shocked at the level of
dishonesty coming from governor romney. the answers that he'd given in the previous week. so, look, it takes time to heal. we know that democrats, we know about healing and we know about bringing people together. i don't believe that newt gingrich will ever fully come onboard or embrace mitt romney. he'll probably go out there and help congressional candidates and in the end if it helps mitt romney -- >> who do you have a potential running mate for mitt romney,erec? >> i do like marco rubio and bob mcdonald have virginia. i'm a huge bobby jindal fan. there are a number of can ats throughout. that's one good thing that mitt romney has working for him right now. there is a deep bench of potential vice presidential candidates all of whom who would be good for him. >> put on your strategist hat, donna, if you were asked by mitt romney for some strategic advice, help him pick a vice presidential running mate?
who would you pick if you were mitt romney? >> well, i think he's going to look for somebody who is not a washington insider. he's going to look for somebody outside the beltway and somebody that merits his own experience in government and the business community. so romney will pick someone equally as bland and boring as he is. >> that's donna brazile. donna, thank you very much. >> donna wins the line of the day. >> erickson, thanks to you. bland and boring, neither one of you is bland and boring. >> love letters from a young barack obama. two of his former girlfriends are now speaking out about their relationships two decades ago, sometimes three decades ago with the future president of the united states. stand by. >> an al qaeda leader urges his followers to use wildfires as a weapon of terror. [ male announcer ] this was how my day began.
a little bird told me about a band... ♪ an old man shared some fish stories... ♪ oooh, my turn. ♪ she was in paris, but we talked for hours... everyone else buzzed about the band. there's a wireless mind inside all of us. so, where to next? ♪ [ female announcer ] the sun powers life. ♪ and now it powers our latest innovation. ♪ introducing the world's only solar-powered home energy system, which can cut your heating and cooling bills in half. call now to get up to 1,375 dollars in rebates. or zero percent financing for 18 months on select lennox home comfort systems. offer ends june 15th.
plus download our free lennox mobile app with an energy-savings calculator to show how much you'll save with a lennox system. if your current system is 10 years or older, start planning now and take advantage of special financing. so call now to get up to 1,375 dollars in rebates. or zero percent financing for 18 months on select lennox home comfort systems. offer ends june 15th. and download our lennox mobile app -- free. lennox. innovation never felt so good.
handling a wave of sexual assaults. cnn's casey wian is join us from missoula, montana. what is going on, casey? >> reporter: officials here in missoula are angry that the federal government is questioning their handling of sexual assault cases here however some women students in this college town say they are relieved. the justice department's decision to investigate the way police, prosecutors and university of montana officials have handled sexual assault cases in missoula is a welcome development for some students. >> the federal investigation makes me feel like something's going down now and something's happening and, like, somebody feels that they need to protect not only my safety, but the safety of others. >> reporter: the justice department is conducting a civil rights inquiry based on potential gender discrimination related to 11 sexual assault cases on campus in the past 18
months and at least 80 cases in the missoula area in the past three years. >> i was actually really relieved, in a sense, because it is such a big problem, and i am pretty confident it hasn't been handled the way it should. >> nada is friends with one university of montana alleged victim. >> i know she was very unhappy with the way she was handled. she had wanted to press charges and just didn't feel safe and ended up having to drop out of school. jo in an exclusive interview with cnn the university's president says his office actually brought the issue to light in december, and hired a former state judge to investigate and implemented several reforms to protect victims. >> this university is one to prevent sexual assault from happening in the first place to care for victims of sexual assault and, three, to get rid of perpetrators of sexual assault, and i think the department of justice will certainly find that we have a well-developed process in place
that we are meeting our obligations in terms of addressing sexual assault. >> reporter: county attorney fred van valkanberg is angry the feds are involved. >> it is unfair us to, to the missoula police department and to the community of missoula to imply that there's that kind of a problem here. >> reporter: he says his office has never refused to prosecute a rape case when there is suspect evidence of a crime. local officials and the university have pledged full cooperation with the justice department. >> reporter: now the justice department in its letter to the missoula county district attorney says it is reviewing allegations that the county attorney failed to prosecute sexual assaults against women because of their gender. local officials here, wolf, said they have tried to get answers from the justice department as to what specific incidents or cases may have triggered this investigation and the justice department has not responded to them.
the justice department also not responding to our questions, wolf. >> casey wian, thanks very much. a college student locked in a holding cell for five days without food and water by u.s. federal agents. now he's speaking out about the harrowing ordeal he barely survived. >> what issues will describe the upcoming general election? jack cafferty is standing by with your e-mail. portunity. you know how to mix business... with business. and you...rent from national. because only national lets you choose any car in the aisle. and go. you can even take a full-size or above. and still pay the mid-size price. i could get used to this. [ male announcer ] yes, you could business pro. yes, you could. go national. go like a pro. yes, you could. what happens when classroom teachers get the training... ...and support they need? schools flourish and students blossom. that's why programs like... ...the mickelson exxonmobil teachers academy...
...and astronaut sally ride's science academy are helping our educators improve student success in math and science. let's shoot for the stars. let's invest in our teachers and inspire our students. let's solve this. in that time there've been some good days. and some difficult ones. but, through it all, we've persevered, supporting some of the biggest ideas in modern history. so why should our anniversary matter to you? because for 200 years, we've been helping ideas move from ambition to achievement. and the next great idea could be yours. ♪ at liberty mutual, we know how much you count on your car, and how much the people in your life count on you.
that's why we offer accident forgiveness, where your price won't increase due to your first accident. we also offer a hassle-free lifetime repair guarantee, where the repairs made on your car are guaranteed for life, or they're on us. these are just two of the valuable features you can expect from liberty mutual. plus, when you insure both your home and car with us, it could save you time and money. at liberty mutual, we help you move on with your life, so get the insurance responsible drivers like you deserve. call us at... or visit your local liberty mutual office, where an agent can help you find the policy that's right for you. liberty mutual insurance, responsibility -- what's your policy? so i brought it to mike at meineke. we gave her car a free road handling check. i like free.
free is good. my money. my choice. my meineke. >> let's go right back to jack cafferty for "the cafferty file." >> the question is what issues will ultimately decide the presidential election? polls tightening up in some of the key swing states as we speak. martha writes at this point you can throw darts at a board. it seemed obama had it in the bag, now not so much. in my opinion, events between august and october will decide the election no matter what the candidates do or don't do. stuff happens. rob in ohio writes money. whoevers had the biggest pile of it to saturate the media enough to sway the swing voting blocs. augusto in los angeles say the economy and unemployment are the number one issue. housing, education, national
safety and terrorism are also all very important. oliver in el paso, texas, there will be a lot of issues, but people will vote for the person they feel safer with. george w. bush was reelected because people felt safer with him protect the nation. jennifer in tucson, arizona. ultimately it will be trust and dependability. >> steve writes no issues ultimately the election will be decided the way it always is, by most people feel more comfortable seeing for four years as our president. it's the hair, stupid. doesn't the guy with the best hair always win? well, most of the time. if you want to read more about this, some eyebrows and some not so, cnn.com/caffertyfile or to our post on the situation room's facebook page. it mean, i suppose that you could be president, wolf. and i've got no shot. >> never say never. you're a very popular guy. a lot of folks like you, jack.
>> jack cafferty with "the cafferty file." he'll be back. >> and you're in "the situation room." inspiring terror long after their death. new plots to poison and burn america from a u.s.-born jihadist who was killed by a u.s. drone and osama bin laden's letters show why he was a worried man even as he blotted more attacks on america. >> love letters from barack obama. his ex-girlfriends share stories about their relationships with the future president of the united states. and look at this. a college student left locked up in a cell by u.s. federal agents, abandoned for five days without any food or water. what did he do to survive? how could this happen in the united states of america? we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com
we begin with a chilling new call to set fire to america and new justification for using chemical and biological weapons and killing women and children. the latest plots from the terror mastermind who has been dead for months. brian todd has been digging into the story and getting new information. brian, what are you learning? >> wolf, on a day when osama bin laden is providing compelling insights from the grave so is another well-known terrorist and this one is an american. anwar al awlaki was killed in a drone strike, but in an online magazine that could compete with america's best in terms of style and layout he's giving terrorists chilling ideas for attacks. from his grave he's still a jihadist rock star, still a major player in a sophisticated glossy, online magazine for terrorists. american-born cleric anwar al
awlaki, a leader in one of the strongest branches in yemen is featured in two of the latest editions of "inspire" magazine despite the fact this he was killed last september. >> he is still able to get the message beyond the grave that the united states needs to be attacked and they need to take jihad into their own hands to launch strikes. >> reporter: cnn terrorism analyst paul crookshank who has combed through the new editions say there are pictures of al awlaki we haven't seen before like this one with him with the top leader of al qaeda abu ba'asyir, and the two of them key players in the underwear bomb plot against the u.s. in these editions, one of which was finished before his death, al awlaki says women and children shouldn't be deliberately targeted, but if they're among combatants it's allow for muslims to attack them
and in these editions, another suggestion. one section of the magazine deals with something you may not think of as a terrorist weapon. it suggests that followers set wildfires in the united states to do damage and it even instructs people on how to make so-called ember bombs. the threat to people and property from wildfires is something eco-terrorists and arsonists have known about for years. they're an economic weapon stretching emergency response budgets and leaving insurance company with multi-million dollar claims. >> you can see where stuff is eating into it. it's a huge, you know, fire problem. >> reporter: greg cade, once the u.s. top official in dealing with wildfires say terrorists can easily target urban areas where urban sprawl meets wilderness. >> they would have to make sure to look at the weather conditions and see what's going on, but when the weather conditions are right, when it's dry and the winds are starting to pick up and it's going to be sunny, no rain, they certainly could use something like that in
a major metropolitan area to start a wildfire and it wouldn't take more than maybe one, two people at the most to kind of get it going. >> reporter: and cade says other than local citizens keeping watch on their wilderness areas it's tough to foil a wildfire attack before it happens, but authorities do have better trained personnel and better equipment to prevent them from doing major damage so that may steer potential terrorists away expect there is no evidence al qaeda or other terror groups have yet set fire in the united states and it's an yet that anwar al awlaki was planting in their minds. we're getting new information about how bin laden felt about the u.s.-born cleric. >> very interesting information that west point combatting terrorism center which released bin laden documents says it makes a comment on the document saying that bin laden didn't really think much of anwar al awlaki and didn't think much of "inspire" magazine and thought it might bring on unintended and
dangerous consequences. bin laden may not have felt that al awlaki was experienced enough to be a jihadist leader and must have been envious of the attention in 2009 and 2010. >> he was killed by u.s. drones and bin laden was killed by navy s.e.a.l.s. >> that's right. >> more on these do you means from bin laden that were just released by the u.s. government. there was evidence that he was plotting destruction until the very end. barbara starr has been going through the documents together with a team of experts. barbara, what are you guys learning? >> you're right. a whole group of cnn experts have been looking at these documents all day. what we have found is that bin laden, obsessed with security, obsessed with u.s. drones watching him and obsessed with attacking the united states. in his own hand, osama bin laden in 2010 laid out his plan to kill the president of the united states saying obama is the head
of infidelity. it was classic bin laden. still, plotting from his isolated hideout, but as newly declassified documents show, a terrorist operating at the margins. bin laden has another assassination target. general david petraeus then commander in afghanistan, bin laden writes, killing him would alter the war's path. bin laden's plan, shoot down aircraft carrying obama or petraeus, something al qaeda would find difficult to carry out. perhaps an indication of bin laden's growing isolation from day to day, al qaeda operations as he spent his last months hiding at the abbottabad compound. it is that isolation and bin laden's frustration that runs through many of the 17 declassified documents. just a portion of what the navy s.e.a.l.s captured during the raid on the compound. >> saw himself as an elder
statesman of the jihad i community and al qaeda, but the world was starting to pass him by. >> reporter: from his hideout bin laden was envious of the freedoms of al qaeda groups in iraq and yemen, groups he could no longer control been by 2010 he ceased mistakes and says i plan to release a statement that we are starting a new phase. bin laden wants to see, quote, the resume in detail of anwar al awlaki, a rising al qaeda star in yemen who did attempt u.s. attacks before the u.s. killed him. one more indication of bin laden's attempts to remain in control. >> the affiliates were making decisions on their own. they were making operational choices that he disagreed with. >> reporter: bin laden remained obsessed with security of himself and his family. five days before he is killed he warn, one of the most important security issues in the cities is controlling children. warning about letting them outdoors without an adult who
will control the volume of their voices. you know, there's been a lot of talk about osama bin laden one year after he was killed, but one group of men, the navy s.e.a.l.s who conducted that mission and killed bin laden, the word is they're never going to talk. wolf? >> barbara starr at the pentagon, thanks very much. thanks to your colleaguesas well. while you can see some of the bin laden documents online, terrorism professionals in the government and one outside the government they have been studying them for some time now and finding stunning revelations. and our national security analyst peter bergen is joining us. he's the author of a new best-seller already out entitled "man hunt. the ten-year search for bin laden from 9/11 to abbottabad." unlike other journalists you had access to these documents long ago and part of them became the
basis of your book. what jumped out at you the most? >> i think the biggest thing that jumped out at me was the realization of how damaging the american drone strike his been on the organization. bin laden was advising his team basically to leave the pakistani tribal regions where the drone strikes are happening and depart for the eastern province of kunar which is a mountainous area which bin laden had escaped to after the battle of tora bora in 2001. because it was heavily forested, and it would be difficult for u.s. drones and satellites to find his guys. so they were very much aware, wolf, about the problems that they were suffering as a result of these strikes. >> he even wanted his own son to get out of there and to get to some secure area in qatar, right? is that what you write? >> yea, i mean, it doesn't get safer than qatar which is like sw switzerland and the middle east. bin laden knew this was a big
problem for them. >> you wrote and you have a cope of this, he wrote a letter, bin laden and he said this, i plan to release a statement announcing that we are starting a new phase to correcting mistakes we made. in doing so we should reclaim, god willing, the trust of a large segment of those who lost their trust in the jihad is, give us perspective on this. >> the documents reveal that bin laden is essentially saying to the various affiliates you have to stop killing muslim civilians because it is killing our brand. stop having big battles in the central marketplace in mogadishu. go and kill the african union troops. stop doing things that are counterproductive. he said to his them ni affiliate don't make the same mistakes that al qaeda made in iraq. don't kill local tribes members. some al qaeda leaders wrote to the pakistani taliban saying you have to suspend the operations
killing civilians in mosques and markets. they were keenly aware that this was their achilles heel. >> he was also planning and you go into specifics of meeting propaganda extravaganza in coordination with the tenth anniversary of 9/11, and it demonstrated that some of his aides -- they were pretty sophisticated in the american television networks. >> in his view, cbs was the least bias of the networks. adam was an american member of al qaeda wrote him doing an analysis. he didn't mention you or me, wolf, by name. he did mention brian ross of abc news and someone he was trying to reach out to and he mentioned journalists in britain and journalists in pakistan and he did a media analysis and fox, of course, had mildly disparaging statements about cnn being too close to the u.s. government and they liked cnn in arabic a little bit more in these
documents. a fairly, sophisticated look at the american media scene as they were planning there. the whole point of this is how are we going to celebrate the tenth anniversary of 9/11. what sort of media outreach are we going to do? >> lots of fascinating information in this new book. thanks so much for writing it. "man hunt, the ten-year search for bin laden from 9/11 to abbottabad." thanks very much. >> thanks very much. republicans are tofurious or the scandal in which they let mexican drug cartels get illegal guns. love letters from barack obama. his ex-girlfriends share details of their relationships with the man who would eventually become president of the united states. >> and ever worry about your car when you leave it in the long-term parking sflot get ready. wait until you see what happened. a long-term joyride.
with these new depend real fit briefs,untry and today we are surprising pro football all stars. there's wes, clay and demarcus.what's up guys. now i know you don't need one, but would you try these on for charity and prove just how great the fit is? seriously? no way for charity? let's do it! yup... they're doin it. the best protection now looks, fits and feels
just like underwear. let's go drive, use the legs... nice teamwork! they tried on the new depend real fit. get a free sample so you can too. i have to be a tree in the school play. good. you like trees. well, i like climbing them, but i've never been one. good point. ( captain ) this is your captain speaking. annie gets to be the princess. oh... but she has to kiss a boy. and he's dressed up like a big green frog ! ewww. ( announcer ) fly without putting your life on pause. be yourself nonstop. american airlines. is engineered for comfort. like parts that create your perfect temperature and humidity or the parts that purify the air. together these parts can cut your heating and cooling bills in half. which is quite comforting. and here's the best part... call now to get up to
1,375 dollars in rebates. or zero percent financing for 18 months on select lennox home comfort systems. offer ends june 15th. plus download our free lennox mobile app with an energy-savings calculator to show how much you'll save with a lennox system. if your current system is 10 years or older, start planning now. and take advantage of special financing. so call now to get up to 1,375 dollars in rebates. or zero percent financing for 18 months on select lennox home comfort systems. offer ends june 15th. and download our lennox mobil app -- free. ♪ lennox. innovation never felt so good.
jack cafferty is here with "the cafferty file." jack? >> buckle up. it's the end of the world as we know it, at least for one in seven people worldwide. a new poll conducted by reuters shows that more than 14% of the world's population believes the world will end during their lifetime. 10% think the end could come as soon as this year, that's based on the end of the 150 year end mayan calendar. pollsters questioned 16,000 people in more than 20 countries. it turns out predictions of doom and gloom vary widely depending on where you live. only 6% of the french and 8% of the british fear armageddon in their life time compared to 22% in turkey and right here in the united states. the russians and the polish were the most likely to fear the end of the world is coming this year. experts say people under 35, those with lower education and income are more likely to
believe in an apocalypse, perhaps because those over 35 have lived long enough not to worry about it. meanwhile, there have been many end of days predictions coming from the chinese, the native emergency the irish, et cetera, but for some reason this mayan am dos day prediction has attracted millions and billions of believers. hundreds of thousands of websites popped up devoted to end of the world fears. however, the experts including nasa say there is absolutely nothing to it. they compare it all to the y 2 k scare. remember that? it turned out much to do about nothing. what does it mean when one in seven people think the end of the world is coming? here's the question. i just said that. go to cnn.com/ -- want to hear it again? /caffertyfile and post a comment on the blog or go to the post on the situation room's facebook page. wolf, end of the world. >> i don't believe it, but you know what? people have the right to believe whatever they want. >> you got it.
>> thanks, jack. >> the chinese activist who briefly took refuge in the u.s. embassy in beijing today phoned in for human rights in washington, d.c. he repeats he wants to leave china and he hopes for u.s. assistant and then he said this to the american lawmakers. >> translator: i want to meet with secretary clinton. i hope i can get more help from her. i also want to thank her face-to-face. >> the activist left the refuge of the u.s. embassy after he escaped house arrest for eastern china. he now wants to take his family out of china. chen guangcheng, the blind, chinese activist and mitt romney
is grabbing the opportunity to weigh on this diplomatic firestorm. listen to what he said today. it's also apparent in he's reports if they're accurate that they put in place the verifiable measures that would ensure the safety of mr. chen and his family. if these reports are true, this is a dark day for freedom and it's a day of shame for the obama administration. >> "time" magazine goes into the chinese human rights controversy. joining us is rick stangel. rick, what do you make of this crisis? and i think it's fair to say that it's a very serious crisis especially with the fact that secretary of state hillary clinton and timothy geithner are in china right now working on economic issues in the midst of all of this. >> yes, wolf. it's a moving target and it's hard to say what actually is going on, but how to meet the
beijing bureau chief talk to him today. the fact that the u.s. had him in custody and the protection of the u.s. embassy where he was a free man and then let him go into the hospital where he was under the authority of the chinese and there seemed to be a lot of uncertainy and miscommunication about whether he wanted to stay in china or wanted to leave. i don't think it's been the finest hour for u.s. diplomacy. >> if these reports are true, key word, if these reports are true it is a dark day for freedom and a day of shame for the obama administration. this is six months before the u.s. presidential elections in november. how is this whole issue of china and human rights in china and you write about this in time magazine are going to play out. >> actually, when you're out there they actually talk about china a lot. they're concerned about china and they feel that we're exporting jobs there and that china owns so much of our debt
so it will become an issue, i think and of course, there's the issue that in effect what candidate romney is talking about is that there's a continuum between u.s. interests and our support for human rights, and i think the obama administration has to figure out where we stand along that continuum. >> it is amazing for someone like myself who has watched china over these decades that mr. chen is allowed to make the phone calls and calling in from beijing to a congressional subcommittee human rights and speaking with journalists openly in beijing. how do you explain this? it's hard to explain, wolf. the chinese are concerned about their p.r., but as you know, they often do things for public consumption at the time the world is focused on it and when the focus goes away the hammered fist comes down on people and that's what mr. chen is worried about. that once the cameras are gone. once secretary clinton comes back to america and he stays in china he's worried about his own safety and the safety of his
family. >> rick stangel, thanks very much. >> thank you, wolf. >> a child with autism bullied by his teachers and catches it all on tape and now lawmakers are beginning to take some action. check this out. 50 feet and growing, what authorities are doing to stop the sink hole from swallowing an entire backyard.
deadly violence in egypt and citing new calls for demonstrations. mary snow is monitoring that and other top stories in "the situation room." what's going on? >> a sit-in outside egypt's defense ministria ever brutal clashes. the growing unrest comes amid frustration with the piece of reform after last year's historic mubarak regime overthrow and concern that the country's military leadership is delaying transition to civilian rule. ten of three presidential contenders have been disqualified ash head of this month's election. >> in the u.s., updating a story we brought you last week. a new jersey lawmaker says she plans to introduce legislation that would make it tougher for teachers to bully students. this comes after learning about a child with autism recently
harassed by his own teachers. his father sent him to school wearing a recording device and caught it all on tape. it was only then that the school district took action. >> a world record for a work of art sold at auction. a pastel version of monk's scream masterpiece sold for, get this, $120 million. it's one of four versions created between 1883 and 1910. it's dubbed as the portrait of the soul and the face that launched a thousand therapists. a sink hole that opened up in the backyard of a florida home and it's still growing. it's 100 feet wide and 50 feet deep. officials say it's swallowed up four trees and it's within a few feet of the home as you can see there. authorities are working to get the sink hole under control. >> i wonder what causes a sink hole. do you have any idea, mary? what causes something like that?
>> no. and it's pretty scary. look at how close it is to that house? >> thank you. we'll check it out. >> so did the obama administration actually lie to congress? one house member's furious response to a skndal involving illegal guns in mexico. new information coming in. >> and if you dated someone you think could come become president of the united states, here's advice. save the love letters. we have details about an ex-boyfriend named barack obama. be careful who you give your car keys to. it may get taken for a joyride. ♪
oh! [ baby crying ] ♪ what started as a whisper ♪ every day, millions of people choose to do the right thing. ♪ slowly turned to a scream ♪ there's an insurance company that does that, too. liberty mutual insurance. responsibility. what's your policy? ♪ amen, omen but proven technologies allow natural gas producers to supply affordable, cleaner energy, while protecting our environment. across america, these technologies protect air - by monitoring air quality and reducing emissions... ...protect water - through conservation
and self-contained recycling systems... ... and protect land - by reducing our footprint and respecting wildlife. america's natural gas... domestic, abundant, clean energy to power our lives... that's smarter power today. fight both fast with new tums freshers! concentrated relief that goes to work in seconds and freshens breath. new tums freshers. ♪ tum...tum...tum...tum... tums! ♪ [ male announcer ] fast relief, fresh breath, all in a pocket sized pack. we have lots of news coming up including a story i think you are going to always remember. you sometimes park your cars in lots and you leave them overnight for a day or two or three. get ready, you're going to see what potentially could happen, but right now there's another
story we're following. remember the fast and furious scandal in which federal agents let mexican drug cartels actually get illegal guns. congressional republicans are now preparing to make a major move against the attorney general of the united states eric holder. the house oversight committee chairman darryl issa of california is circulating a draft, get this, contempt of congress resolution. he is directly accusing the attorney general of not cooperating with the congress in the investigation. our senior congressional correspondent dana bash has been watching all of this unfold. it's been brewing for weeks and month, i should say, but now it seems to be coming to a real potential boiling point. >> it does. >> and there seems to be some differences about the republican leadership about whether this is the right thing to do, but what we are seeing here, we saw it so many times during the bush administration, during the clinton administration. these constitutional showdowns,
but this is really the first one that we are seeing within the obama administration, congress making clear at least on the republican side that they really want these documents from the obama justice department. december 2010, border patrol agent brian terry was shot dead at the mexican border. weapons were traced back to a sting operation known as "fast and furious" it allowed illegal guns to be purchased in order to track them to senior drug cartel members. >> we don't get cooperation. >> darryl issa has been tousling with the justice department for mocks demanding information about the program he says obama officials are withholding. now issa drafted a resolution holding attorney general eric holder in contempt of congress for failure to comply with the congressional subpoena, not cooperating with the house gop investigation. >> this should never have
happened. >> issa wants documents on the fast and furious operation. after the agent's death the justice department denied it was illegally allowing the flow of weapons to the mex dan drug rings. ten months later acknowledgement that the program was fundamen l fundamentally flawed. they want information about what senior officials knew about the gun tracking operation. they say justice is stonewalling. >> we have sent thousands of pages of documents up to the hill to the subpoenas, and i'm sure we'll undoubtedly comply with them. a senior justice official responded they've sent 7600 documents to congress and points out holder has testified half a dozen times. a heated exchange earlier this year. >> how many more border patrol agents would have had to die as part of operation fast and furious to take responsibleity. >> i'm not claiming to be a perfect person and perfect
attorney general and i get up every day and do the best job they can. >> in his lengthy memo supporting the contempt resolution, the fast and furious program aloud 2,000 guns to walk out of phoenix gun stores into the hands of drug smugglers. he also gives historical example was administration officials held in contempt of congress, most recently in 2008 when the house voted to hold top bush aides in contempt for refusing to testify. a democratic government source flagged this video showing back in 2008 issa and other gop lawmakers protested when the house voted to hold republican administration officials in contempt of congress. >> they responded these are completely different issues. the white house officials claimed executive privilege and they're trying to get information from the justice department which is an agency where congress has oversight authority over. wolf it is unclear whether iceal
hold a committee vote on this. they're hoping the new threat will pressure the justice department. >> what the democrats are implying if not boldly asserting is this is payback time for the democrats from the republican leadership in the house just as the democratic leadership in the house during the bush administration held some administration officials in contempt. >> they're saying that it's a democratic -- it's a political witch hunt and that's what the republicans are doing and that they say they have no basis of going this far in threatening to hold the attorney general. >> it's shocking that federal law enforcement authorities allowed illegal guns to get in the hands of the mexican drug cartels. >> that is shocking. >> it is remarkable. >> thanks very much. before michelle obama entered the picture, barack obama had other serious relationships, now two of his ex-girlfriends, they are opening up, revealing a fascinating side of him we're getting to see for the very first time. let's go to mary snow in new york. she's got the details.
>> these are two women whose names hadn't come up until now. one shares letters that a young barack obama sent her highlighting his thoughts on literature and philosophy, another opened up her diary sharing it in a new book. "vanity fair" has an excerpt. >> a new glimpse of the young barack obama. two ex-girlfriends during the 1980s are sharing their stories for the first time in a new book "barack obama, the story." australian born genevieve cook was his more serious relationship. she's shown here in a photo. they met in the christmas party in the months after obama graduated from columbia and was living in new york. the couple lived together for a short time in the brooklyn brownstone and throughout the 18-month romance cook kept a journal. how is he so old already at the age of 22, she wrote at the end of her relationship. there is something that continues to come up in her
writings. >> i feel that you carefully filter think in your mind and heart, legitimate, admirable, really a strength, a necessity in terms of a kind of integrity and there's smoothed veneer, a guardedness, but i'm still left with this feeling of a bit of a wall. the veil. new york times reporter jody cantor who wrote a book about the obamas says that period of obama's life was a search for identity. >> during the new york years not a lot actually happened. there's not a lot of drama. there aren't a lot of big scenes. a lot of what's happening with barack obama in this period is taking place inside his own head. obama and cooke grew apart with cooke writing i can't help thinking is what he would really want, be powerful drawn to was a woman, very strong, very upright, a fighter, a laufer, well-experienced a black woman i keep seeing her as. a slice of obama's past coming to light has also brought until now an unknown history to the
brooklyn neighborhood where obama used to live, surprising the owners of obama's former home. >> i was amazed and just kind of amused. it was just one of those things where, you know, you never know, and i just thought it was funny. >> now barack obama left new york in 1985 and he met michelle obama four years later. i guess nothing is off limits. >> nice letter, though. i've got to admit. very nice to see. >> they are. >> when you become president of the united states everybody goes through your history including old girlfriends. thanks very much for that, mary. >> sure. here's something i want you to see. stand by for this 0 to 60 in three seconds. that's what could be happening to your car when you think it's safe with the parking attendant. just ahead, what one reporter found out in a stunning investigation. ♪
ever wonders what happens to your car when you hand it over to a valet? one parking lot owner in florida got caught red-handed joyriding with his customers' cars. just look what jeff deal of cnn axe fill atwftv found out. >> 0 to 60 in 3.6 seconds in one hot car, fire red. 430 horsepower v-8 engine. the $60,000 corvette, the kind of car anyone would love to take for a spin and the kind of car you hate to leave in someone else's hands, but that's what people do. especially cruise passengers looking to set sail on vacation lots like premiere parking spot in cocoa offer to watch your car whil you're on vacation and then shuttle you to the port in style. eyewitness news got a tip the owner of premiere parking spot jamie evans was known to take customers' keys and then take their cars for a ride. to investigate we rented the
flashy convertible corvette and equipped it with a gps tracking device. >> but sure enough, the temptation was too much. just six hours later with the couple long gone, the gps tracking device sent us a text message alerting the car was in motion. that's when we captured this video of nieves and another employee joyriding in our car, peeling out on dirt roads. we saw them taking pictures of the corvette in front of nieves' home later that night and eventually parking it at applebee's. our computer gps system shows nieves even parked it at his home overnight. two days later we watched him drive it all over town running errands. he went to ace hardware. this is nieves walking from the store to the ar car with a friend. later he loaded it up with
lumber from his home and allowed the dog to run around in the customers' car. finally, when he left it in a parking lot near his business with the top down and door open for more than 20 minutes we'd seen enough. >> whose car are you guys driving today? do you think it's okay to drive customers' cars? >> his female employee didn't say much and when we confronted nieves, he played dumb. >> whose car are you guys driving out there. >> whose car are we driving? >> yea. >> the red corvette. i'm not driving anybody's car. >> you guys are driving that car all over town. >> even though we had all this video. let me show you something, jay. you recognize this road right here? do you recognize those people right there in that car? >> we're not driving anybody's car. >> jamie nieves flat-out lied and denied he ever took a joyride in the customers' car. >> tell me the truth. be honest with us. >> sir, you're completely wrong.
>> wow! the brevard county sheriff's office says no one from premiere parking was there to pick up passengers returning from a cruise after taking a cab to the lot, wftv reports the passengers found their cars with the keys in the doors, but no employees in sight. excellent piece of investigative reporting. we'll get to more and we'll stay on top of this story for you. >> a college student left handcuffed in a holding cell for five days. >> dehydration, that's what i feared the most. dehydrating to death. >> just add how he survived and a piece of glass that's keeping this lion from getting his teeth on a child. stay with us. you're in "the situation room." >> i really enjoy the design and the creative process and pulling little levers there and taking
details from a design perspective. what get really gets me excite side when i literally, when i invent a product for the first time. a product that they can see on a napkin and posted on the internet and here i am, some random dude handing it to them and it's a real, life physical thing that they'll be able to buy at target next week. that, to me, is the most special part of the project.
you know, i have done something worthwhile. when i earned my doctorate through university of phoenix, that pride, that was on my face. i am jocelyn taylor. i'm committed to making a difference in people's lives, and i am a phoenix. visit phoenix.edu to find the program that's right for you. enroll now. introducing gold choice. the freedom you can only get from hertz to keep the car you reserved or simply choose another. and it's free. ya know, for whoever you are that day. it's just another way you'll be traveling at the speed of hertz.
a cleej student forgotten in a holding cell left desperately trying to survive after being arrested in a dea raid. now he's suing the federal government. here's cnn's paul vercammen. >> dehydration. that's what i feared the most, dehydrating to death. >> daniel chong says they forced him to drink his urine after spending five days without food and water. the 20-year-old uc san diego engineering student told reporters he had been abandoned and he kicked and screamed for attention. >> it is so inconceivable. i never thought about oh, they forgot me because i heard them around me, every opening except mine for son reason. >> reporter: his lawyer says he got so desperate at times suicidal that he shattered his glasses with his teeth. >> he was trying to scratch his arm deeply enough to cause bleeding while at the same time writing a note to his mother on
his skin. the attorney is taking the dea too court. >> we are seeking damages for the worst trauma that anybody could go through. he was locked in a room, half of the time in total darkness, without food, without water and believing that he was going to probably die. >> reporter: the dea special agent in san diego issued a statement. i am deeply troubled by the incident that he occurred here last week. i extend my apologies to the young man. and added he orred a review of our policies and procedures. he was detained when federal agents raided a house looking for mda or ecstasy. they turned up 18,000 ecstasy pills, several guns and marijuana. he admitted he went to the house to get high on april 20th, a day of national celebration by pot
smokers. >> this was april 20th, which some college students consider to be a holey dy day. daniel was there to smoke pot. he had nothing with any drug distribution or drug distribution ring. >> reporter: chong was never charged with the crime but apparently was forgotten after being placed in the holding cell. >> there should be a public disclosure of what happened and a public answer as to why it happened. hopefully, as a result of his terrible suffering, something done in an institutional and systemic way to ensure that it never, ever happens again. >> reporter: chong's lawyer has filed a $20 million federal claim. he expects that to be rejected and that, in turn, wolf, would open the door for him to sue the federal government. wolf? >> thanks very much for that
report, shocking, shocking information. let's go to jack for the cafferty file. the guy in charge, they are going to review the policies and procedures. does anybody ever get fired for doing this stuff? i guess not. they are just going to have a review. the question is, what does it mean when one in seven people think that the world is coming toen to an end? >> nancy in tennessee says people aren't thinking logically when they think the myian calendar is running out. not the end of the world. m in wyoming says, it has always been this way. in other places, they say, if the good lord is willing and the creek doesn't rise. it has to do with the unknown and the risks involved with living. b. writes, maybe the other six
might be prepared for what the one might do out of fear, religion or hatred. nate in north kaur care, the other six remember, y-2k. the human race cannot sustain itself on this current course. 1 in 7 have done the math. without a fundamental change in consciousness, the human race is doomed. ernie in vermont says i am glad it is happening again. i missed it last time. paul says, it means the rest of us will be able to buy their stuff really cheap. you can read more by going to the blog, cnn.com/cafferty file or through our post on "the situation room's" facebook page. if the world doesn't end, i will see you monday. >> i will see you mornd, jack. thanks very much. it is why they keep the animals behind glass. take a look at what happens when this hungry lion cease a toddler in a zebra-striped sweatshirt. ♪
[ female announcer ] the sun powers life. ♪ and now it powers our latest innovation. ♪ introducing the world's only solar-powered home energy system, which can cut your heating and cooling bills in half. call now to get up to 1,375 dollars in rebates. or zero percent financing for 18 months on select lennox home comfort systems. offer ends june 15th. plus download our free lennox mobile app with an energy-savings calculator to show how much you'll save with a lennox system. if your current system is 10 years or older, start planning now
and take advantage of special financing. so call now to get up to 1,375 dollars in rebates. or zero percent financing for 18 months on select lennox home comfort systems. offer ends june 15th. and download our lennox mobile app -- free. lennox. innovation never felt so good. an accident doesn't have to slow you down... with better car replacement, available only from liberty mutual insurance, if your car is totaled, we give you the money to buy a car that's one model-year newer... with 15,000 fewer miles on it. there's no other auto insurance product like it. better car replacement, available only from liberty mutual.
it's a better policy that gets you a better car. call... or visit one of our local offices today, and we'll provide the coverage you need at the right price. liberty mutual auto insurance, responsibility -- what's your policy? when you go to the zoo, there is a reason why you are on one side of the glass and the animals are on the other. here is jeanne moos with a closer look. >> reporter: she is the new
jaws, kaya the lionesses at the oregon zoo thought jack was a tempting morsel, a prey item, says zoo director. >> if you had your house cat looking at birds outside the window. >> reporter: does that kids' hoodie outfit remind you of anything. >> he looked like a tasty baby zebra. >> reporter: kiddies and kids make for popular viral videos. there would be fearless sophia or -- understandably freaked out boy named harper. >> it is okay. he can't get you through the glass. it is okay. >> reporter: kids are dangled like bait. parents give instructions. they put patty cake with paws to music and it is not just lions. it is black leopards. it is grizzly bears.
it is polar bears. japanese tv show even dressed up a girl as a baby seal to tempt a polar bear. well, an orangutan might spit, a gorilla can give you a scare. maybe you would like to see things from a gorilla's point of view. those silly humans, mocking, beating their chest. often, mom and dad argue. >> how is this not funny? >> it's terrifying. >> the family guy as he drew a face on the octopus. >> it is so sucky and squeezy. >> reporter: oregon zoo director says, that's not going to happen with a lion. the glass is designed to standards. even if it did, it would crack, not break, sort of like what happened when taz, the gorilla charged the glass two years ago at the atlanta zoo.
>> the glass held. it is actually three panes of glass fused together. the interior pane got a crack in it. >> reporter: knock yourself out, a one, a two, and a three. jeanne moos. >> holy crap. >> reporter: cnn. >> he wants to eat our baby. >> reporter: new york. >> i wouldn't keep the baby how close to that glass i don't care how thick that glass is. that's it for me. thanks very much for joining us. i'm wolf blitzer in "the situation room." the news continues next on cnn good evening. i'm john king. tonight, china's leadership blocks access to a blind dissident who says he wants to seek asylum in the united states. the administration says chen ga gaunchung left