tv John King USA CNN June 20, 2012 6:00pm-7:00pm EDT
the committee vote was hours after the democratic administration upped the ante. for months, a stare down between the congress and justice department. this morning, president obama invoked executive privilege, denying the committee the documents they demanded for months from the attorney general. it would be an unprecedented step for an attorney general to be found in contempt by the entire house. that vote is set for next week, and harsh statements from all sides tonight in washington don't suggest at the moment any opening for compromise. here is the chairman, darrell issa. >> there's still time for avoid tg, if in fact the documents we asked for are delivered by the time the house scheduled for contempt vote. >> democrats on the committee accuse chairman issa of not cooperating. kate baldwin is here. highly partisan, going on for
months. the attorney general came out, said it is political games, the chairman says not. >> 23-17, that's the political breakdown, partisan breakdown on the committee. what was a bit surprising i would say from what we heard today was this marathon hearing where they were leading up to the contempt vote in the house oversite committee, it was how caustic and bitter the debate was amongst members in partisan times on capitol hill. the arguments did fall along similar lines, depending what party you were in. republicans charge that the attorney general as well as the president now are stonewalling their very legitimate investigation into this botched operation, fast and furious, and everyone on both sides of the aisle acknowledged it was a fatally flawed, fundamentally flawed operation. democrats, though, they say no matter how much information the department of justice would have handed over, the republicans were bent, wanting to move forward with the contempt vote,
would never have been satisfied with any information provided to the committee, and that's really where things are left. the house, this house committee has voted. now it needs to move to the full house for a vote, and that we hear from republican leaders, that will be happening next week, if something doesn't change in the meantime. we will wait and see. i thought it was interesting, and you will, too, john, even in the attorney general's statement after the vote, he himself talks how political it was. election year tactic intended to distract attention. the gloves are off here. >> if you read the tone of that, he is off for a trip to europe, has a staff to negotiate. if you read the tone of that, listen to the republicans and statement from leadership saying this doesn't have to happen if you give us all of the documents, he says politics, they say oh, where do we go from here. >> they're at a stalemate. miracles can happen when they want them to. doesn't seem the desire or air of compromise among us. the options are, it becomes
unclear after house votes. they have the majority, it is likely to go through, this contempt citation will go through. what happens after that is a little more unclear. one scenario is that this could be sent to u.s. attorney for district of columbia, but unlikely department of justice will enforce a contempt citation against one of their own, especially if it is in dispute. the house could move on their own to take civil action, but it has to be said now with this executive privilege being asserted, it does inoculate the president and attorney general from further prosecution, if a judge upholds an executive privilege is right in this case. so murky at best moving forward. >> a lot of legal ifs, ands, buts. let's go to david gergen. this is the attorney general, the highest law enforcement officer. a house committee says he is in contempt of congress. where do we go from here.
how significant is this in. >> it has suddenly gotten more significant, john. we had a low level fight going on in washington, almost below the radar screen for most americans. both sides escalated dramatically tonight. the president exercising executive privilege the first time in his presidency, and the house committee voting contempt and sending it to the floor where it is likely to pass. john, in the past when we've had these kind of dustups, they've ordinarily been resolved by negotiations. clearly there are documents the administration is sitting on, don't want to share with the committee. the committee really wants to see them. i don't know if there's a smoking gun there or whatever, there must be something there that's sensitive from a white house perspective. but ordinarily in this kind of thing, negotiation would say why don't we have two or three selected people or four people go into a room, look at the documents in that room, and they can make judgment on what's
there. then there are going to be certain limitations on what they can say about it and that sort of thing, something like that i think has to work out. but in this environment, it will be hard to get there. ought to do it before the contempt vote. john, for a lot of americans that don't understand the complexity and don't care about the complexity of this, it is one more illustration if we needed any more that washington is broken, and that has repercussions for economic confidence as we've learned when we went through the whole debacle over the debt ceiling. >> this has happened in the past. first time, david, president obama had an executive privilege clash with congress. president bush six times, clinton, 14 times, gorgeous hw bush once, reagan once. how do you go forward. they have been in this over a year, and for the first time,
the administration says it is covered by executive privilege. how much does that late invitation complicate things? >> a lot. it leaves the implications with republicans that the reason they don't want to show these documents to the house is that there's something there that involves the white house, possibly the president himself that could be embarrassing or, you know, could raise questions about judgment and that sort of thing, and up until this time, we thought this was internal, these documents were internal to the justice department. when you invoke executive privilege, that raises the ante, because it makes it a big issue, becomes a constitutional clash, but it also says there may be more in here than you even thought. >> so if you agree the tone of statements, listen to tone of statements made to the microphones and cameras, especially the attorney general of the united states, you know him, served in clinton administration, served in politics a long time.
over the past months each statement ratchets up the politics. after the vote, perhaps next week the full house would hold him in contempt, he says it is pure partisan politics, an election year stunt. words like that from the attorney general of the united states tell you what? >> he's been under pressure to resign from some in the republican party. he ain't going anywhere. he is a very smart fellow. they clearly blew this operation. made two mistakes, bum belled the effort on the ground, and initial responses to congress, had to retreat from a letter sent out early 2011, but having said all of that, you can respect eric holder for saying i'm not being railroaded on this, you're not coming in to run over me because you try to squeeze out things you want to embarrass us over. we have given you the basic facts, and we're not going to
back down. but from the -- let's go back. this is again ultimately about this democracy work in washington today -- does democracy work in washington today. if people conclude those guys really cannot run the country, it is very discouraging and it has ripple effects well beyond the fast and furious case, it really has ripple effects about confidence and sort of government, confidence in the economy, and again, this is getting rapidly built into something that neither you or i, neither you nor i would have thought would have been likely a week ago. >> my expectation was they would broker a deal, cut a deal. >> exactly. >> for those of you that don't recall what fast and furious is, it was a gun running operation where justice department set up what was supposed to be a sting operation to watch trafficking of guns across the u.s. mexican border to drug cartels.
instead, u.s. guns went to the cartels, one was found at the murder scene of a border patrol agent. that's why the investigation goes on. david, i want to come back to this point. this is the first time this president had this confrontation with congress, but we have seen increasingly oversite from house republicans, democratic white house, divided government in washington. a lot of people, if you look into commentary on twitter and social media, why is this happening, you say the dots could be connected to the dysfunction of town? >> absolutely. people, reasonable people should have figured a way to have information presented to the committee, also used to create a political circus, have to see what's there. we have seen such negotiations numerous times in the past. it can be worked out. but if you hate each other and want to put the knife in as the election approaches, this is one way to do it, and one way to get the country to say, you know, i don't like any of these guys.
>> end it on that point. i think the country is already saying they don't like what's happening in this town, period. see how it plays out. thank you. moving on to an ominous report from federal reserve about the economic outlook for the rest of the year. this is election year. central bank says the economy is growing, but at a more anemic pace than projected two months ago. stock prices were mixed at the announcement. closed mixed at the announcement, which included that they were extending a stimulus program. fed stopped short of more aggressive action, even after lowering expectations for economic growth the rest of the year. this is the chief business correspondent, ali velshi. you heard what they said. weaker economy than two months ago. they say it will grow between 1.9 to 2.4. april, they thought 2.9. unemployment, thought it would fall below 8% sometime this year, now they say no, it will stay at least 8% through end of
the year. why. >> the storm in europe, the outer bands are hitting the united states. by the time it hits, could be a little storm or hurricane. on top of that, china's economy is slowing down. this has very little to do with washington, has very little to do with what's going on in the united states. it is what we are feeling as a result of a global slow down. at this point the feds got very little ammunition left. it used some of what it had. didn't want to convey a sense of panic by throwing everything at the problem. it said we're going to make money cheaper for longer in hopes that people will borrow that money, expand it, use it to hire people, create demand, boost the economy. >> you say they don't have too many bullets left. fed chairman thinks he has some. let's listen. >> i wouldn't accept the proposition that the fed has no more ammunition.
i do think our tools, while they're nonstandard, still can create more accommodating financial conditions, still provide support for the economy, can still help us return to more normal economic situation. >> what does he mean by nonstandard tools? >> the nonstandard tools are quantitative easing, which is printing more money, putting more into the economy, making it that much more available, or doing what it is doing now, making the ten-year bond very inexpensive to borrow against, and that as a result influences mortgage rates and things like that. john, do you ever remember mortgage rates being 4% or lower for 30 year fixed mortgage? here is the problem. we have done so much already. we all harp on the stimulus bill, $800 billion. the feds put in trillions of dollars into the economy. with all of that support, ultimately, this comes back from my financial and economic court into your political court.
it is about how people feel and whether they think things are getting better. right now, americans simply don't. >> when you hear that from the fed chairman, unlikely to be optimistic. >> right. >> ali, thanks. let's get important perspective from fareed zakaria. if you listen to the president as the g-20 summit wrapped up, you could hear the frustration in his voice. he says the leaders get it, but he knows it could take months if not more for europe to get back on the path. listen as he tells the leaders it's not just your actions, there's more to it. >> even if they can't achieve all of it in one fell swoop, if people have a sense of where they're going, that can provide confidence and break the fever. >> the president says confidence to break the fever, but you heard the european leaders, a lot of them are in disagreement. does this president, the most
powerful president in the world, have control over europe? >> no, it is a fascinating situation where europe has become rich and powerful and unified enough that the united states has very little control. this is one of the first major economic crises in which the united states is something of a bystander, but what obama was signaling, which is a very important signal is that there's a psychological dimension to this. what obama was trying to do was use the bully pulpit to get the europeans to understand this and change the psychology, but as you started by saying, it is not clear that many europeans are in the mood to listen to the president of the united states, any president of the united states. >> and if they don't listen, could european dysfunction cost barack obama his job say more than mitt romney? >> oh, absolutely. i think that this is -- this has the potential to seriously wreck the american economy, particularly if you got one of these spirals of no confidence
and panic. in that situation, two things happen. first of all, the financial system could come unwound, and remember, european banks and american banks are intertwined. american banks have been preparing for this for a year, year and a half, so the damage will be limited, but it will be real, there will be damage. secondly, europe is our biggest market outside the united states. so we sell to europe. europe is the other rich bowl of the world. a collapse in europe will almost certainly send the united states into double dip recession. these are small probability events. of all the things on the global landscape that barack obama is looking at, it is absolutely clear, europe has the potential to sink the american economy and with it his prospects for re-election. >> fareed zakaria, as always, thank you. the defense rests without a word from jerry sandusky. take you inside the courtroom for closing arguments. what sent a jet careening
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geico®. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more on car insurance. welcome back. here is kate baldwin with the latest news. >> a lot of news going on today. other headlines today. key leadership change for the country holding europe in economic suspense. antonio samaras was sworn in as the new greek prime minister, coming in when many think they will ditch the euro and ignite a bigger crisis. four hours of hell. that's what one traveler called this jetblue flight from las vegas. reporting to wabc, the faa is questioning all passengers on the flight. pilots were forced to circle hours to burn fuel before making emergency landing. passengers say the plane careened wildly, causing some on board to throw up.
listen as pilots radio to report double hydraulic failure. >> you said you have multiple what? >> yeah, we've got some hydraulic issues up here to deal with. >> jetblue 194, we're going to keep you in air space, how long for holding? >> at least maybe 30 minutes, plus we're heavy, we're going to have to burn a lot of gas as well, so it could be a lot longer than 30 minutes. >> scary stuff. other headlines we're watching. the last thing people looking for a job want to hear. the latest numbers are out. the number of job openings fell to 3.4 million in april, nearly 9% dip from march. you breakdown the numbers, means there are nearly four job applicants employed for each opening. economists say it is another sign the economic rekcould have re is slowing. and castro praised the art
of yoga, saying it does things to the human body that defy imagination. part of a 35 word ode to the practice in his newspaper column called reflections from come rad fiddle. he stepped down due to unspecified illness. 35 words. he is taking to remedy. >> when you step down, going to write a newspaper column, mention yoga? >> i guess that's what people do with spare time on their hands. >> in cuba. >> see you in a bit. up next, a key republican senator, house committee votes to find the attorney general in contempt. this senator says he wants the answer to this question, what did the president know. and closing arguments for the jerry sandusky trial, the jury did not hear from the defendant. best math scores. ...the united states would be on that list. in 25th place.
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this half hour of john king usa, jurors will hear closing arguments in the jerry sandusky trial tomorrow. they will not hear from the former assistant coach charged with 51 counts. this senator says he is dumbfounded by use of executive privilege. and the truth about which candidate is having the worst week. back to the top story. dramatic show down between the obama white house and republican house. the house oversite voting to holder i can holder, the attorney general, in contempt. president obama earlier invoked executive privilege saying the administration did not have to turn to a house committee documents they have been demanding from the attorney general for months. the president's action did not
stop the vote. >> 23 ayes, 17 nos. >> the ayes have it, and contempt report is ordered reported to the house. >> go to capitol hill. chuck grassley is the ranking member of the senate judiciary committee, they've also closely tracked and investigated fast and furious issue. senator, the attorney general says this is unnecessary, unwarranted and says this vote to hold him in contempt, it is election year tactic intended to distract attention and as a result distracted critical resources from fulfilling my responsibilities, top priority to department of justice, protecting the american people. answer the attorney general. >> if it was last february or march when we started this, he might have credibility when he says that. after 18 months of being stone walled by the attorney general, i think that's intellectually
dishonest. >> pat leahy says this. the bush justice department was not nearly this forthcoming and never tried to reach a reasonable accommodation in response to oversite effort. he tried to make the case that attorney general holder is trying. is he? >> i can tell you this, when the democrats were investigating the u.s. attorneys that were accused of responding to political pressure that i joined senator leahy in efforts to get transparency of all of the documents. i have not had that support of the democrats in the senate in my investigation. >> you mention the u.s. attorneys investigation. when the house committee looked into that, darrell issa said this when president bush invoked executive privilege, he said, quote, they didn't need explaining to the public. is it possible now because of his past statements on executive
privilege issues the democrats could sayesque partisan or being a hypocrite? >> they can say it about anybody they want to say it, but can't say it about chuck grassley's investigation and oversite work the past 25, 30 years. >> let me read some of the statement you issued. you said how can the president assert executive privilege if there was no white house involvement? how can the president exert executive privilege over documents he's supposedly never seen, is something very big being hidden to go to this extreme? senator, what do you think they're hiding? >> well, throughout 18 months of investigation i never had any idea whatsoever that the president was involved, and i never accused the president of being involved. i always wondered for the most extent how high up in the justice department it went, and i could only trace it up to the assistant attorney general. beyond that is the attorney general involved in approving this? now it raises a question of what
does the president know and when did he know it by the claim of executive privilege? >> do you see this going, do you see any path to resolution, sir, or do you think the house will vote on its contempt citation, and if it does, what happens on the senate side? >> listen, contempt citation does not come to the senate, so it will go from the house of representatives to u.s. attorney district of columbia, with possible charges against the attorney general, and if those charges would stand, he could have a misdemeanor with up to a jail term. >> i understand it doesn't go to the senate, sir. my question is what happens to the senate investigation, did the investigation go forward or do you try. the senate side, the world's most deliberative body. some effort with chairman leahy and you to find a circuit breaker before the house takes such extraordinary step?
>> senator leahy never offered to have a hearing, and you know, when there's a vacuum out there, that vacuum is filled by somebody, and i think i filled that vacuum over the last 18 months, and so far senator leahy said he wouldn't have a hearing until the inspector general of the judiciary or justice department got done with their work. then he said he would have a hearing. but that's going to be too late. i think this isn't just in the senate a stall, this is a stall in the justice department i think to get by 'til the next election because i think there's something embarrassing politically to this administration that they want to keep out of the public's minds, and that's why we've been stone walled. >> chuck grassley, appreciate your time. >> yes. thank you. from day one of jerry sandusky trial, would the defendant take the stand. we got the answer. it won't happen.
sarah began man has been on this. jerry sandusky's defense team deciding he wouldn't go on the stand why? [ no audio ] >> having audio problems there with sarah. we'll try to get to her if we can. get some perspective where this trial may be headed. former prosecutor, wendy murphy. jerry sandusky doesn't take the stand. you said you would advise when we talked last, if you were his attorney, would have kept him in the seat, not allow him to. how does it change the case in closing arguments. does the defense lawyer have to explain why he didn't take the stand to the jury? >> you know, john, he doesn't have to, but he'll probably make some reference to it being his decision because he doesn't want them to think badly of jerry sandusky, and he promised them in his opening that he would testify, or at least implied strongly that would happen. i think he has to take responsibility for it, but he won't focus on it long. the jury will be instructed not to consider that, and hopefully
the jury will do the right thing, constitutionally speaking, they aren't allowed to take it into consideration. as a theatrical matter, this man who so many witnesses testified under oath he was the greatest since sliced bread, wonderful man, generous, loving to children, sat quietly and said nothing after eight victims took the stand and all of this evidence was presented against him. the jury can't help but think mm, if that were me, i'd testify if i were innocent. >> help me breakdown the case. from a prosecution standpoint, you go back through the testimony, a pretty quick case. the alleged victims testify, moved through it quickly. what in your mind stands out. did the prosecution in your mind meet its test or leave an opening? >> well, i tell you, the burden of proof is tough. beyond a reasonable doubt is the toughest burden of proof in law. yet this case went in so quickly, in my opinion underprosecuted. the only thing i can infer is that the prosecutor feels very,
very confident. for example, john, one of the things you would typically see is an expert witness testifying about something like child abuse accommodation syndrome to help explain why sometimes kids stay friendly with their abusers for years after the fact, why they don't tell for many years. often jurors don't understand that, and think that cuts against victims' credibility. the prosecution didn't offer up such witness. you have to believe the prosecutor sees the case as so strong and that the victims themselves so good on the stand that they didn't bother with anything beyond the basics, and that's why it went in so quickly. you know, i don't want to overstate it, but i can imagine the prosecution's case. tomorrow is also going to be very short, very tight. one of the arguments they're going to say, going to make and focus on, look, the defense would have you believe that all eight of the victims would submit themselves to risk of felony perjury prosecution, and you saw them, you looked in their eyes, you saw them crying,
you saw their demeanor on the stand. was that the testimony of a liar as the defense would have you believe or was that a truthful young man taking the stand and consider all of the corroboration in this case. mike mcqueary, the janitor's testimony, the documentary evidence, the so-called love letters. would you honestly discount to the point of reasonable doubt the strength of the prosecution's case because the defense, defense has no burden of proof, but they have done nothing, nothing to undermine the prosecution's case. that's the kind of closing we're going to hear tomorrow, and i think it is going to be very short. they don't have to explain away much of what the defense put on in its case because they didn't make much of a dent. >> do you agree with that, when the prosecution gets up there and says the defense proved nothing, that's always a challenge for a defense lawyer, prove at least at a minimum reasonable doubt if you can't attack the facts of the
prosecution's case. did they come close? >> no. the odd thing in this case, some of the defense witnesses became good for the prosecution! even dottie sandusky as much as she tried to be supportive of her husband ultimately testified as a witness for the prosecution during what was supposed to be a cross examination and wasn't, she said i know of no motive to lie for these kids, and she confirmed that jerry was often down in the basement, without her, all alone tucking the kids in. there was so much about the defense case that actually added to the prosecution's case, i don't know what to say, except that i think the defense is going to have a very difficult time. i hope and expect one of the things they'll do is emphasize only those counts where there were real weaknesses, like where the investigators made suggestions about the kinds of testimonies they had already heard from other kids, and the possibility of money motive, one of the victims reportedly saying things like i can't wait to buy a new house after i cash in on
my lawsuit. that kind of stuff resonates with juries. they don't want to overbelieve just because they feel a lot of emotional reactions to this case, and so i think he'll probably win some of the charges. but again, 50 charges he is facing. even if he wins ten, instead of 500 years, it is 400 years. there's not a lot of light at the end of the tunnel for jerry sandusky. >> appreciate that, wendy murphy. let's get back to sarah. sorry for the audio glitch in the beginning. take us to the defense team, jerry sandusky even though he did so many interviews, in his heart, he probably wanted to testify, why didn't he. >> reporter: the short answer, we don't know why. defense attorneys didn't say, there's a gag order on the case. they spent the week trying for small victories, trying to chip at the prosecution's case.
i think they were able to explain, give alternate explanations for some of the strange behavior that jerry sandusky has been accused of, and so the only thing i could guess is that, you know, they didn't want to potentially mess that up by putting him on the stand. you know, he has spoken publicly several times, and he was widely criticized for that. putting him on the stand would give prosecutors a chance to go after him. his wife testified on his behalf yesterday and pretty much explained, she was pretty forthright with her husband's innocence and tried to give what might have been his side of the story, you know, one that he was very busy, two, this was their life-style that they brought kids into their home and mentored them, and she went after the credibility of some of the accusers as well. i think maybe in some ways they believe she gave his side of the story and really didn't endure
much cross examination and might have been satisfied with that. >> sarah will be there again tomorrow. thank you very much. who has the worst week, it is only wednesday. mitt romney or president obama? on a walk, walk, walk. love to walk. yeah, we found that wonderful thing. and you smiled. and threw it. and i decided i would never, ever leave it anywhere. because that wonderful, bouncy, roll-around thing... had made you play. and that... had made you smile. [ announcer ] beneful. play. it's good for you. you see us, at the start of the day. on the company phone list that's a few names longer. you see us bank on busier highways. on once empty fields. everyday you see all the ways all of us at us bank are helping grow our economy. lending more so companies and communities can expand,
safe to say this will not be remembered as the romney campaign's best week. refuses to answer a straightforward question of immigration policy to the point of ending a conference call because reporters wouldn't follow the campaign script. >> it sounds like we don't have any more questions on today's topic. we appreciate everyone having the opportunity to dial in
today. >> end of discussion, and it is answering questions it promised it wouldn't. the candidate himself deciding to play the dangerous game of vice presidential identity politics. >> marco rubio is being thoroughly vetted as part of our process. >> tactical missteps. here is tonight's truth. the president, yes, it is only wednesday, is having an even tougher week. left the g-20 summit with no guarantee europe will right the economic ship and home a few hours before chairman of the federal reserve delivered this sober note. fed predicts 2.4% growth, down from 2.9% projected in april. and unemployment will stay above 8% through the end of the election year. >> strange and global financial markets, associated plins mri with the situation in europe pose significant ris tok recovery and further improvement in labor market conditions. >> safe to say, ben bernanke briefing, hardly the most,
siting, but i would argue the most important. we will talk with a congressman, and ryan list bon from the new yorker. congressman, i will go to you first. you hear ben bernanke say 2.9%, now 2.4%. thought unemployment was dropping to 7.8%, not great but improvement. now we think above 8, maybe 8.2 through end of the year. some republicans say yay, helps us in the race against president obama. but is there any urgency to say let's go down to the white house, see if we can figure out something, something to help the unemployed americans before the election? >> i desperately wish we could. we passed 30 bills that deal with jobs and the economy, haven't gotten any action out of the senate, won't debate let alone vote on the bills. no help from 1600 pennsylvania avenue. so the economy is job one.
nobody wants to see people suffering. remember, congress represent people as well, constituents as well. we want them to be doing well, and this is the number one issue. it is where we're failing. >> i am not sure the white house would offer this deal. if the white house said we will give you a one year extension of all the bush tax cuts, but what we want in return is immediate construction spending before the summer passes, we want immediate money to tell may ors come fall, hire more teachers when school season resumes. would you cut that deal? >> i don't know, we haven't had that offer. the federal government spends about $10 billion a day. if that's not stimulative to the economy, we need to reevaluate where money is being spent because one of the other problems is we don't have stability and predictability in the marketplace. one of the reasons they aren't hiring, they don't know what's going to happen with taxes and health care and what's going to happen with these things.
hesitation causes capital to resist investment. that's one of the fundamental problems. >> maria core donna, a couple of romney tactical missteps this week, relatively small, unless they blossom and grow. when you hear from ben bernanke, hear the numbers, you just have to think this might not be about mitt romney. this could be barack obama versus the economy. >> i think it has always been barack obama versus the economy. whenever you have asked me and others, which republican are we most afraid of to run against, it has never been that we're afraid to run against anybody, or that anybody would really make us not as confident. it's the economy. it has always been about the economy. i think what ben bernanke said, of course it gives everybody pause. no one wants to hear that news. but i think it should also put fire under congress, including our friend, congressman
chavvetz, waiting to be approved, that independent economists would say would create jobs. >> the congressman said, not passing judgment on the policy, there are a lot of bills the democrats won't touch. the problem is the dysfunction and minds matter, or my way or the highway approach. there's zero indication. it is even worse and prospect of a european storm that could make it even worse. >> absent things getting significantly worse, no way the two camps agree on anything. the gulf between them on the economy is too huge. both the white house and republicans seem to be saying we're not going to solve this, let the voter decide in november. immediately after the election, they have to do something because we have a deadline looming. >> but if an unemployed
american, too bad. forget the names of candidates and parties, president, white house, look at historical data, on this day, you have to say he loses. >> polls don't quite show it. historical data, not the absolute level of unemployment, it is the direction, how much money people have in their pockets. obama is on a knife edge. i think this summer will determine which way he tips. news coming out of europe, what's going on with energy prices, that's going to -- we're going to know the story by end of the summer, by labor day. >> i don't think historical data should be as important here. this president has clearly done things that put history to rest. >> george h.w. bush would argue things were getting better. data starting significantly better, ronald reagan better, but george h.w. bush it was good and he still lost. >> but in the case of george h.w. bush was seen as out of
touch. president obama will be good at making sure voters understand it. >> obama wants a choice, romney wants a referendum. historically, a referendum. the most bizarre case homeland security department ever handled. latest detainee, 70 million-year-old dinosaur skeleton. and how many calories are you putting in with that pizza. what they don't want you to find out. one is for a clean, wedomestic energy future that puts us in control. our abundant natural gas is already saving us money, producing cleaner electricity,
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listerine® whitening... power to your mouth. in washington today, a house committee on capitol hill voting to hold the nation's highest ranking law enforcement officer, the attorney general of the united states, in contempt of congress. that committee vote now goes to the full house. there could be a vote next week. here's jason chafis explaining. >> we have nearly 2,000 weapons purposely given to drug cartels. we have hundreds of dead people in mexico. >> chafffetz is still with us. the attorney general also says it's an election year partisan stunt. do you think a compromise on these documents can be reach before the big house vote is scheduled next week. >> the department of justice
have dispoedz of this a long time ago. we're after what led to the death of brian terry who was killed in december of 2010. we've issued a number of requests for documents including a subpoena in october of last year. you can't just ignore subpoenas in this country. we want to find the dominants and find out who is responsible and do as president obama promised to hold the people accountable and get to the bottom of this to make sure it never, ever happens again. >> maria, the congressman mentions, these requests go back to early last year. it was just today the white house says, oh, there's executive privilege, you can't have these documents. to a lot of people, that's a little fishy. >> people should also understand that they have actually been cooperating quite a lot with all of the investigators. they've given over almost 8,000 pages of documents, which as you know is normally covered in an executive privilege. but because they want to be forthcoming and they want to
negotiate in good faith -- and they would still be open to a negotiation before this does go to a vote because that would be very extreme. but here's my question. if we really wanted to get to the bottom of this, why hasn't chairman issa brought in the head of the atf and the agents who were actually involved in this operation who actually know what happened? they actually refused to have any hearings on this and bring them up for any sort of public comment. that makes no sense to pe. >> well, the reality is july 4th of last year in a bipartisan way staff did over the course of two days interview the acting atf director who was appointed by president obama and interviewed about this. we also have the atf agents -- the reason we know about this is because the whistle-blowers said, this is outrageous. we let 2,000 weapons -- we gave 2,000 peppens to the drug cartels. that's why we got into this mess. it was fundamentally flawed. even the attorney general recognizes it was fundamentally flawed.
on february 4th of 2011, the department of justice sent congress a letter, a letter that ten months later, they had to pull back because it was full of lies, it was not truthful. >> they retracted that and acknowledged that. >> but it raises a lot of suspicions. they have thousands of people, the justice of department, to send up a letter that was so wrong. you hear it here. the partisan divide, this is a legitimate inquiry without a doubt. the democrats say the chairman's gone over the line. we'll see how it plays out. k th can they fix this or are -- >> not to take away some of the drama of today's vote, but there was a congressional report out recently that listed since 1980 the number of administration officials who lost a contempt vote in a committee. it's a pretty long list. karl rove, harriet myers, bush administration people, janet reno in the clinton administration days. they can't agree on which documents to hand over.
the committee votes to hold them in contempt. they come back to the negotiating table and at some point, i think holder and the republicans on this committee will reach some deal and there will be some documents -- that's historically how it's happened. >> let's hope that's what happens or for the good of the government or the good of the washington dysfunction. we'll be talking to the lawyers for months and months. thank you all. kate bolduan is back with the latest news nund to know. egypt's ousted leader is off life support and his health has improved, according to an attorney for hosni mubarak. it comes just a day after a state tv reported mubarak was clinly dead. he's now in a cairo hospital after reportedly suffering a stroke. now to the south of france and the city of toulouse where police have a gunman in custody after a tense standoff. the gunman claimed he was with al qaeda and took four people
hostage at a bank. two hostages were released and then police stepped in, wounding the suspect and freeing the remaining hostages. the bank, strangely enough, is located in the same neighborhood where a deadly 32-hour standoff unfolded in march. and the department of homeland seizes guns, security, cash, weapons and now weirdly enough, add dinosaur bones to the list. a judge gave the okay to seize a 70 million-year-old dinosaur skeleton. homeland security says it was exported to florida illegally in 2010. now it will send the skeleton back where it came from, mongolia. pretty interesting. >> even older than i am. >> i wasn't going to go there. >> kate, you like pizza? >> obviously. >> tonight's moments you may have missed. all the pizza chains, all on capitol hill today, no? not for a pizza party but fighting to keep calorie counts off their in-store menus.
here's a look at how many calories you rack up with just one slice. but the chains say they're not trying to hide nutrition information. th >> most of our customers in pizza stores order online or over the phone. they don't look at a menu board and make their decision that way. we're not only doing it in a way that's expensive for the small businessperson. we're doing in it a way that would be too confusing. >> congress required this menu labeling as part of the health care reform law. while it may not have bipartisan support, pizza -- maybe we need mayor bloomberg to broker this one. >> you stole my line. they can throw the calorie counts at me. i'm still eating the pizza. >> yeah. i was looking at a menu the other night, made me feel guilty
donch . "outfront" next, america has a drug problem. the drug, ben bernanke's money. and it's time tonight for an intervention. and at the 11th hour, president obama jumps head over heels into the fast and furious controversy. hours later, the attorney general of the united states, one step closer to being held in contempt of congress. and later, they say they were just protecting their daughter. so why are they being charged with murder today? does it add up? let's go "outfront." good evening. i'm erin burnett. "outfront" tonight, america's drug addiction. it's not cocaine. it's not heroin. it's not even bath salts. we're addicted to ben. we want more ben and we want him now. but tonight, the truth. there's not enough ben for america. more ben is bad.