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tv   Happening Now  FOX News  January 30, 2015 10:00am-11:01am PST

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>> good luck mr. and mrs. sherman on the baby. that's awesome. a fox news alert, new reaction pouring in from potential 2016 presidential candidates after mitt romney announced he will not make a run for the white house. >> as you know, mr. romney the runner-up to president obama in 2012, spent several weeks exploring a candidacy. we're covering all the news happening now. >> gun battles escalating in eastern ukraine. pro-russian forces cutting supply lines of ukrainian troops to overrun another ukrainian city. the battles continue with no end in sight. how should the west respond? plus, change for the better. just ahead of the super bowl the nfl highlighting a steady drop in concussions. so what's working and what still needs to change? and -- >> we landed at the wrong spot. >> a grand entrance gone wrong.
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a wedding party aboard a hot air balloon forced to make an emergency landing. it's all happening now. but we begin with the race for the white house and a man who our fox news polls say was the front runner for the republican ticket mitt romney, opting out. welcome to "happening now." i'm john scott. >> hi everybody, i'm jenna lee. mitt romney spent three weeks considering the idea of running for president yet again, this after surprising financial backers with hints he may take a third crack at the oval office. but those donors have apparently moved on, or so we hear. in calls to staff and supporters this morning romney said it was time for him to get out of the way. >> after putting considerable thought into making another run for president, i've decided it's best to give other leaders in the party the opportunity to become our next nominee.
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>> well, mitt romney may be out now, but just yesterday he was the number one republican in our fox news poll. romney led about a dozen other candidates, ten points ahead of mike huckabee and rand paul and a bigger lead over jeb bush. let's talk about it with carl cameron, our campaign expert. carl, any surprise for you this morning? >> not really. an awful lot of romney's close supporters were a little bit ambivalent about this from the very beginning. as romney made phone calls, things began to become clear to him. he was pretty candid on his call to supporters. he told them on the conference call that the nation does need a conservative president and he long wanted to be that president but he's not going to run so others can have a better chance to win and, therefore, try. listen. >> i believe that one of our next generation of republican leaders, one who may not be as well known as i am today, one who has not yet taken their
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message across the country one who's just getting started, may well emerge as being better able to defeat the democrat nominee. >> to a lot of sounded like a shot at former florida governor jeb bush. romney is the only republican in the latest fox poll to actually tie hillary clinton in a head-to-head matchup. the problem was the gop conservative base. the grassroots never really connected with him in 2008, '12 and now. the establishment thought he ran a lousy 2012 race and a big chunk of his 2012 team had already moved on. many were working with other candidates and waiting to find jobs. romney is going to meet with chris christie tonight for dinner. he met with jeb bush just last week and romney insiders say because romney had vetted chris christie for vice president in 2012 he could have beaten christie. it's no secret the battle with jeb bush was going to be bloody. in the end romney is a meticulous analyst of data and he concluded he couldn't win.
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no candidate who thinks they can win ever bows out. john jenna. >> fascinating. carl cameron thank you. >> you bet. so let's talk about it. romney, as i mentioned earlier, was the front runner in a fox news poll taken just yesterday. nina easton is a contributor, charlie hurt is a columnist with the "washington times." for a guy who has taken a couple of whacks at running for the oval office, it had to be pretty tempting to try it this time around, especially given the numbers that you saw in our fox news poll yesterday. nina, what do you think? >> you know, john, i had the opportunity to speak with mitt romney last spring. it was at a time when putin had just decided to annex crimea and as we recall mitt romney cited russia as a great danger, a great threat. it was a time when the jihadist isis was on the rise. this was a man who clearly was frustrated that he was not at the helm and that he wasn't leader of the country.
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he really cares about the country. i think you saw it in his withdrawing from the race. i mean i think he's aware of the baggage that he comes into the race with out of the 2012 campaign would have hurt him going up against hillary clinton. so, you know, it's -- i wasn't that surprised that he decided to at the ending of the day not go forward. >> baggage but also name recognition, charlie. if there is any buyer's remorse for having elected barack obama maybe mitt romney could have been the beneficiary of that. >> absolutely. that fox news poll shows that that name i.d. was everything at least right now until terms of the snapshot that it takes of the republican electorate. but i think republicans have dodged a little bit of a bullet here. if you look at that poll, you know, this election was very much shaping up to be the same as the 2012 election where you
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have mitt romney as sort of just marginally in the lead but far ahead of all the other people. and everybody else kind of bunched up there. then we wound up with that seesaw thing where you'd have one candidate pop up and then fall back down and it was like it was romney and then anybody but romney. and so i think that this was a selfless thing it was a smart thing to get out of the race and to sort of open it up. republicans have an opportunity to find a fresh face, a new -- a new candidate with new ideas and, you know, put that up against hillary clinton, who is the oldest and -- this is -- the clintons have been around for a long time. they have not been out of the spotlight for any time in the past, you know whatever, 15 years or so. it's a great opportunity for republicans to draw up a very starkly different campaign. i think an opportunity to possibly win. >> our fox news polling team
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took that poll as i mentioned that just came out yesterday, showing romney atop the field, but they were also smart enough to take a poll that said who would you vote for if romney was not in the race. among registered republicans without a romney in the race jeb bush gets 15% of the vote, mike huckabee 13%, rand paul 13 as well then ben carson, scott walker and chris christie with 6%. first of all, nina do those numbers surprise you? and i guess is bush the automatic number one beneficiary of romney's withdrawal? >> first of all what pollsters you have at fox news to do that poll. but i think the romney withdrawal, so it obviously helps jeb bush. it will help chris christie who still he's got some issues but still really hits it home with crowds. it will also help scott walker by the way, who did really well in iowa last week before
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conservatives, and he's considered -- might not light up the room but he's somebody who's taken on the unions and he's come from behind electorally a number of times. he's somebody i think that will benefit. i would say in terms of the poll that some of it is name recognition, like a huckabee. i'm not sure how well he will go over again we'll see. to me the one to watch is marco rubio, who i remember so deeply in 2012 where there was such a core of support for him among conservatives, even though they have trouble with him on immigration now, that considered him an eloquent and inspiring and they really wanted him to be on mitt romney's ticket as vp. so i think he doesn't poll well right now but i really think that's someone to watch. >> and yet charlie it's often governors who do well as president. marco rubio, though he is an excellent stump speaker a very bright man and young and attractive candidate in many
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respects, he's a senator. >> i think that is the key right now, john is that with mitt's removal, it opens the field. the field is so flat now. and as you point out with that question, you know, who would you support with mitt out of the way, jeb bush takes the lead, but he takes a two-point lead and very quickly everybody is bunched up right beneath that. what that tells me is that republicans are very much -- they are not thrilled with establishment candidates right now. they are not thrilled with the establishment. it's a great opportunity for a governor, perhaps a governor we're not even thinking of right now to step in and take control of this race. >> i think that graphic we had up a moment ago had 11 faces on it of republican potential presidential candidates. and that does not -- >> here we go again. >> here we go again. it's going to be quite a wild ride for the next year. thank you both nina easton and charlie hurt. >> thanks, john. speaking of the potential candidates, some reacting to
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romney's announcement today. jeb bush tweeting, mitt is a patriot and i join many in hoping his days of serving our nation and our party are not over. kentucky senator rand paul tweeting this. quote, my family and i wish mitt and ann the best. we have gotten to know them over the last few years and deeply respect their family and mitt's service. and in a statement former senator marco rubio said he certainly earned the right to consider running so i deeply respect his decision to give the next generation a chance to lead. next generation something that mitt romney said in his statements. >> so some new reaction from lawmakers in washington as we learn one of the five high ranking taliban leaders released from guantanamo bay in exchange for army sergeant bowe bergdahl has tried reaching out to the terror group from qatar. national security correspondent jennifer griffin is live at the pop pentagon with more on that. >> reporter: john, senator lindsey graham said the released
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detainees met with the network a few months ago and one placed recent phone calls to afghanistan. u.s. officials would at merely say there were attempts to reach out to the taliban. >> we remain confident, as we were when we sent them there, that the assurances we received are sufficient enough to help us mitigate any future threat that these individuals might pose. >> reporter: intelligence experts suggest the released taliban may be viewed with suspicion by the current taliban leadership, which may fear that they are u.s. plants. it is no secret the former gitmo detainees are under surveillance by qatar and the u.s., so any phone calls could identify the location of the taliban leadership, making them a prime target for a u.s. drone. the reaction from republicans on capitol hill, anger. >> in the past releases, there's approximately 30% of those who have returned to the fight so it should be of no surprise that one or more of these five would return to the fight and it's why
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many of us objected to it at the time. >> this was a bad deal to start with. of course these were five top commanders in the taliban, but now we have one of those already communicating with the taliban. it may be the network that was the deadly form that have killed so many of our troops. >> reporter: the qatari emir promised his country would monitor the five detainees for a year. that ends in may. after that they reportedly can leave qatar. >> josh earnest the white house spokesman, is downplaying the concerns over those five who are released. he is under way right now with his daily briefing and he said, first, that none of those five has returned to the battlefield. that is technically accurate. they're not out there with ak-47s. the question jennifer is what might they do. >> reporter: well, what they appear to be doing is reaching out, making contact, and the question is what will they do in
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may when they're allowed to leave qatar. they may be fund-raising at this point. they can be helping the taliban in many ways they don't have to be holding an ak-47. we understand from defense sources that they are -- all five are still in qatar right now under surveillance. >> that's the good news. let's hope that continues for many, many many years. jennifer griffin, thank you. the family of an american contractor working in saudi arabia is raising serious doubts about his death. the mysterious text messages they say prove it wasn't suicide. plus, intense fighting in one iraqi city as isis attempts to continue its advance across the country. and a pilot gets locked out of the cockpit while in midair. hear how this drama unfolded. fore earning enough cash back from bank of america to help pay for her kids' ice time. before earning 1% cash back everywhere, every time.
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the war on terror. u.s. contractor christopher kramer died two weeks ago after falling, it was reported, from the third story window of his hotel room. authorities originally said this was suicide. but his family is raising some serious doubts. today two americans were fired upon in their car in an eastern province. one was injured. amy joins us live from london with more on all of this. >> reporter: hi, jenna. the two americans were driving near the royal palace in alahsa province when another car approached and fired on them. now, one was hit, the other was not. the person who was hit sustained some injuries which, jenna, are not believed to be life life-threatening but it's also believed the two assailants got away. the saudi interior ministry is looking into all options. they wouldn't be drawn on whether this was a terrorist attack or not but an investigation is under way.
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neither the u.s. or the saudi government are providing any details like names or where these two americans worked in eastern saudi arabia presuming that they were stationed there. now, this comes after a state of attacks on foreigners in saudi arabia in the last few months. an american defense contractor was killed back in november at a gas station in riyadh when a saudi fired upon him. the saudi government said this was not a terrorism-related attack, that it had to do with some sort of workplace dispute. but there are people who remain skeptical that there may have been some sort of cover-up in this case. and then also around the same time, a danish national was shot. he was also in a car when he was attacked. he survived the attack but a few days later isis claimed responsibility in a videotape for that attack. the saudi government believes this was in fact an isis-inspired attack. they have three people in custody for that attack. also a canadian national was
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attacked with a knife in a mall. that attacker was believed to be someone with a series of mental illness or series of mental problems, a history of mental illness, but nevertheless it is a shocking and unusual sort of attack in the otherwise fairly safe kingdom of saudi arabia. finally, this other american contractor, chris kramer who you mentioned earlier, fell from his hotel third floor window two weeks ago in saudi arabia. originally it was deemed a suicide on the ground, but the family, various family members have come forward and said they don't believe that to be the case at all because chris kramer was sending out disturbing text messages just before he died saying he was in imminent danger. aparngtparenty saudi police are looking further into this but a spoke with a spokesman and he did not have any new information for me. i asked to what stejtextent is isis
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a concern and she said, look it's a concern for everyone in every country. but saudi arabia has 2,000 nationals who have gone off to fight jihad, so for them there is a big concern about retainees. security is being stepped up. but of course the country, if you talk to people, not officially say they are quite concerned about this. >> amy thank you. more questions about isis now. a deadline has come and gone and still no word over the fate of at least two prisoners isis said would be executed. one is japanese photojournalist kenji goto. his wife making one final plea for his return this morning. the other is a jordanian air force pilot. isis demands the release of a jihadist woman in jordan convicted in a 2005 bombing in jordan's government is willing to negotiate but are demanding proof the pilot is alive.
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some intense fighting in iraq involving isis. iraqi troops storming a hotel with isis fighters inside. this comes amid new reports isis is launching a fresh attack on the iraqi city of of kirkuk about 150 miles north of baghdad. a car bomb also detonated outside the very same hotel wounding two people. a plane flying without the pilot at the controls. when the captain gets locked out of the cockpit. we'll show you what happened next. plus, the fighting escalates in a big way in eastern ukraine with pro-russian fighters making gains. we'll speak with one professor who thinks the west needs to rethink its approach to confronting russia's president, vladimir putin.
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a delta flight from minneapolis to las vegas makes an emergency landing without the pilot. a passenger recorded this cell phone video of the captain explaining to everyone else on board that the cockpit door jammed locking him out, probably during a bathroom break. fortunately, the first officer was still in the cockpit and was able to land the plane safely nobody hurt. delta issuing this statement, quote, prior to final approach, the captain of delta flight 1651 from minneapolis/st. paul to las vegas was not able to re-enter the flight deck because of a door jam. a commercial aircraft can be landed with one pilot at the control and delta pilots are fully trained to do so if the situation were to occur. the first officer took control and landed the aircraft safely without incident. the door will be evaluated by delta maintenance technicians.
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you think? the violence escalating in ukraine as pro-russian rebels continue to battle ukrainian forces. some incredible video there of the fighting still very much going on. explosions heard in several towns across eastern ukraine. rebel forces reportedly capturing at least one city. the cease-fire brokered last year, well you can see it for yourself. it's basically gone. the fighting raging on despite increased sanctions from the west that have taken their toll on russia's economy. the value of russia's ruble has plummeted. russia's central bank is cutting interest rates in an attempt to stem the losses so there's a lot happening to the economy, but all this appears not to faze russian president vladimir putin. our next guest says what the west doesn't understand about putin is that he doesn't think the west is as strong as the west thinks it is. joining me now is walter, editor
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at large. talk to us about that small snippet of your article walter. why do you think that matters the way putin is viewing us. >> well, we look at putin's weaknesses, but he looks at the west weaknesses and he looks for example, look at europe. they're having a huge euro crisis. greece and germany are fighting and there's a new pro-russian government in greece. so putin looks at america and the middle east and he says the obama administration is desperate for some kind of a deal. russia is on the security council, it can oversee the deal. so he thinks he has a lot more avenues to push forward than we think he does. >> do you think he's accurate in his assessment? >> you know what i think we're probably right about russia's weaknesses and he may be right about our weaknesses and it will be interesting to see when the two collide. >> one of the things that you point out, and it's funny to watch this video. i'm sure a lot of our viewers
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probably haven't seen a lot of video out of russia or ukraine recently. fighting is still very much going on there. you say we need people in power to map out why russia poses a great danger to america's interests. how would you articulate to our viewers what that danger is? >> well, let's imagine for example, putin didn't cross ukraine's border with an army of invasion, he sent in what they called little green men who just wandered in and are now fighting a war dozens of miles inside ukraine. the russian army never crossed the boundary. what happened in latvia or astonia, these are countries that are members of nato, suddenly we woke up and there were little green men inside nato. would countries like germany be willing to start a war against russia to drive little green men out of astonia? or on the other hand are we going to sit there and say i guess nato doesn't work.
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so the u.s. could easily find itself in a terrible position with no good choices. >> let me ask you about those little green men. what do you think is the true danger of that infiltration, that potential infiltration? does that mean a breakup of the e.u.? does it mean nato doesn't work? how high a cost are we talking about right now? >> i think if you could demonstrate to the world that the nato alliance which is our strongest and oldest military alliance, is a kind of a hollow facade and that in fact it can be -- being a member of nato doesn't mean you're secure, then i think that is -- that strikes at every single alliance the united states has around the world. >> really quick here josh earnest was just holding a presser at the white house and he says this. we're hopeful that at these costs, meaning the costs to the russian economy, as the costs mount, it will prompt president putin to re-evaluate his strategy. is there hope of that based on our sanctions? >> i would say that you could
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finding a white house press spokesman saying almost exactly those same words from the day russia first invaded ukraine. we are so sure putin is weak, we keep saying, look, putin if you want to surrender, we'll do it in an easy way, surrender won't hurt you. he keeps not surrendering. we keep building off-ramps but he keeps blowing through them. this is what leads me to think putin has a fundamentally different evaluation of the balance of forces than we do in the west. >> walter good to see you as always. >> good to see you. >> thank you very much. john? a fox news alert and the head of the of nfl, commissioner roger goodell, is holding his annual super bowl news conference a couple of days away from the big game. let's listen in. >> the real credit goes to the players and coaches. they have adjusted to the rules and the challenge of creating a culture of safety for our game.
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but there's more to do on player health and safety. carefully reviewing and improving our concussion protocols will be a focus of our medical committees this off-season. and we are establishing the position of a chief medical officer. this individual, who we expect to have in place very soon will oversee our medical-related policies, ensure that we update them regularly and work closely with our medical committees, our advisers and the players association. there is more work to do on other fronts. while the quality of the game continues to improve, fans want every play to have suspense, but the extra point has become
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virtually automatic. we have experimented with alternatives to make it more competitive play and we expect to advance these ideas through the competition committee this off-season. we are looking at expanding the use of technology and innovation for our football and medical staffs as well as our fans. last year technology improved officiating. for the first time, it enabled us to directly involve officiating supervisors in our office in instant replay and for officials to use wireless communications on the field. replay and other officiating decisions took less time. that's important. fans don't want delays coaches don't want delays. they want action and accuracy. we are looking at other ways to
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enhance replay and officiating. that includes potentially expanding replay to penalties. if it can be done without more disruption to the pace of the game. and we are discussing rotating members of the officiating crews during the season as a way to improve consistent see throughout our regular season and benefit our crews in the postseason. in officiating consistency is our number one objective. the possibility of expanding the playoffs has also been a topic over the last couple of years. there are positives to it, but there are concerns as well. among them being the risk of diluting our regular season and conflicting with college football in january. in another important area, we are continuing our work to
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uphold the highest standards of responsible conduct so that we represent our fans and communities in a way that will make them proud. yesterday we held the first meeting of our new league conduct committee chaired by michael bidwell. the committee reviewed our new personal conduct policy. it emphasizes ongoing education prevention support services and raises the standards for all of us in the nfl. most importantly, it is clearly more effective. on the issue of footballs used in the afc championship game ted wells and our staff have been hard at work conducting a thorough and objective investigation. as you would expect we take seriously anything that
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potentially impacts the integrity of the game. we are focusing principally on two questions. why were some footballs used in the game that were not in compliance with the rules, and was this the result of deliberate action. i want to emphasize we have made no judgment on these points and we will not compromise the investigation by engaging in speculation. when ted wells has completed his investigation and made his determination based on all relevant evidence we will share his report publicly. finally, on steps to grow the game and serve the fans, we are excited about the success of thursday night football and the extension of our agreement with
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cbs. we have the best partners in media and together we will continue to develop new platforms, expand fan interaction, and deepen fan engagement. technology, great football and our fans is a winning combination. how our fans especially younger ones, connect with the game is changing every day. to that end, we are aggressively pursuing the streaming of a regular season game with our first over-the-top telecast. it would be carried on broadcast stations in both team markets, but it would also reach a worldwide audience, including millions of homes that do not have traditional television service. let me finish with this. football's popularity is
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extraordinary. the credit goes to the players coaches and the fans. we know the nfl's impact is far-reaching. it is most dramatically seen on super bowl sunday. it means we have enormous responsibility to lead every day by example. it is what our fans deserve. we are humbled by and grateful for their passion. they are the ones who inspire me, our owners and coaches and men like our walter payton award finalists who are with us today. and we know we must earn the trust of our fans every day. i know you have a question on these and many other issues, so let's get to it.
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>> roger barry willner from the associated press. in light of what you just finished, your statement, with such a focus on off-the-fieldin uz including what the public perceives as failures dating back to the saints bounties as well as some problems on the field that you just referred to, what do you plan to do specifically before next season to restore faith in the league and in the quote unquote, shield? thank you. >> yes. we've already begun that process, barry. we have already begun the process of adding additional resources in terms of individuals that can bring an expertise to our office, an expertise to investigations. as you know, last fall i announced that we would hire a special counsel for investigations and conduct. we are in the search process and hope to conclude that in the very near future. we have great people working for
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the nfl, and we are adding resources, adding assets that will make sure that we have a thorough and fair process. we are also as we demonstrated with ted wells, not afraid to go outside and to get outside perspective that can be valuable to us a professional perspective that will give us the kind of outcome we want which is a fair with the truth being clear. >> roger, jim thomas, st. louis post-dispatch. i have a two-part question for you. what is the league's level of commitment to keeping a franchise in st. louis especially given the recent efforts to build a new stadium for the rams for the second time in 20 years? and secondly, rams ownership by all appearances seems to be more interested in the l.a. project than the st. louis stadium project. how does this meet relocation guidelines which call for teams to exhaust every opportunity in their own market before moving? thank you.
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>> well jim the first answer to your initial question is that we want all of our franchises to stay in their current markets. that's a shared responsibility. that's something that we all have to work together on. the league has programs, including stadium funding programs, that we make available. we will work and help work with communities, including st. louis. we also will make sure that we're engaging the business community and the public sector in a way that can help us lead to solutions that work in those communities, and in your case st. louis, and make sure that it works for the community as well as for the team. so our teams can be successful over the long term. the second part of your question jim, was the interest of the ownership. you know stan has been working on the stadium issue in st. louis, as you know, for several years. they had a very formal process as part of their lease.
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that process -- they went through that entire process. it did not result in a solution that works either for st. louis or for the team. so i don't think the stadium is a surprise to anybody in any market that is having these issues. there's quite a bit of discussion about it. and the st. louis representatives seem determined to build a stadium. that's a positive development something that we look forward to working with them. >> commissioner, bob kravitz. robert kraft said the other day that he felt that you and your office owed him an apology if nothing came out of the investigation, the wells investigation. what are your thoughts in that matter? >> well, bob my thoughts are this is my job. this is my responsibility, to protect the integrity of the game. i represent 32 teams. all of us wanting to make sure that the rules are being followed. and if we have any information
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where the potential is that those rules were violated, i have to pursue that, and i have to pursue that aggressively. so this is my job. this is the job of the league office. it is what all 32 clubs expect and i believe our partners our fans expect. and we will do it vigorously and it is important for it to be thorough and fair. >> roger, sam farmer of the los angeles times. 2015 marks the 20th year without a franchise in the nation's largest market and coincidentally the 20th consecutive year that i've asked this question. earlier -- >> i do recognize it already sam. do you want me to finish it for you? >> should i just drop the mike? earlier this month as jim mentioned, rams owner stan cronke announced plans for a
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stadium. considering that he has the land the vast resources both financial and political can anyone else win this race? what's the criteria that the league is going to use to determine which team or teams are able to relocate to los angeles? and what if an owner decides to go rogue and without the nfl's blessing says i'm just going to move my team no matter what you say? >> well sam, several points that you made there and let me try to be responsive to all of them. first, let me start with your second question. the ownership takes very seriously the obligation for us all to vote on any serious matter, including relocation of a franchise. there's a relocation policy that is very clear. we have shared it with our ownership over the last several years. we have emphasized a point in each of those meetings that there will be at least one vote if not multiple votes, if there
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is any relocation. we would have potentially the relocation itself, potential stadium funding potential super bowls, so a lot of things would likely be subject to a vote. and our ownership takes that very seriously and we take that very seriously, so any relocation will be subject to a vote. as it relates to the first part of your question, there have been no determinations of us going to los angeles, any particular team going to los angeles or going to any particular stadium. we have several alternatives that we're evaluating both from a site standpoint. there are teams that are interested but are trying to work their issues out locally. and so as a league we haven't got to that stage yet. and it will all be subject to our relocation policy. there are requirements in that policy, as you know, particularly as it relates to cooperation and working to make sure that they solve the issues
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in their local market. but i'm confident all of that will be covered within the relocation policy and with our membership approval. >> roger mike garafolo fox sports 1. i realize this question might seem heady especially in comparison to some of the other things you'll be asked. but marshawn lynch's cooperation or lack thereof with the media has become a big story. even before you were a commissioner you concerned yourself with growing the game with marketing the game. so what's your take on how he handled the media this week and has your office made a decision whether he'll be fined for a lack of participation or for wearing a nonlicensed hat? >> on the second part of your question, i dongt not believe any decision has been made on that. our staff will look at that following the super bowl and make a determination, as they have in the past. you know, i've been very clear that when you're in the nfl, you have an obligation.
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an obligation to the fans. it is part of your job and there are things that we all have to do in our jobs that we may not necessarily want to do. i think marshawn understands the importance of the super bowl the importance of his appearance and the importance of him as an individual in this game. and fans are curious. fans want to know. the media would like to make that story clear to our fans. i understand it may not be on the top of his list but everyone else is cooperating, everyone else is doing their part because it is our obligation. and as i say there are a lot of things we don't like to do in our jobs, but it comes with the territory and it comes with the privilege of playing in the super bowl. >> commissioner goodell darren mckey, kkfn, denver. >> yes. >> speaking of jobs it's been a tough year for you in your job this year. many peop in america, if they
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went through the year you've had, probably would have resigned or been fired. can you envision any set of circumstances which would lead you to resigning or being fired at your job, commissioner? >> no i can't. does that surprise you? listen, it has been a tough year. it's been a tough year on me personally, it's been a year of what i would say humility and learning. we obviously as an organization have gone through adversity but more importantly it's been adversity for me. and that is something where we take that seriously. it's an opportunity for us to get better. it's an opportunity for us -- for our organization to get better, so we've all done a lot of soul searching, starting with yours truly. and we have taken action. a lot of the concerns that we had back in august where we didn't have a policy that
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addressed a very complex issue we didn't have answers for that. we didn't fully understand those issues. well, now we have experts in the field. they're in our office. they're helping us understand this. advisers that have given us a better understanding of the issues and how to deal with these complex issues. we went on the road. we've spoken to last count i had was well over 150 experts, whether they're former players, college university presidents, law enforcement officials. how can we do a better job of managing these complex issues? and we set out to create a new personal conduct policy which was unanimously approved by our 32 owners in december. so we made enormous progress. the things we didn't know and the things where we were in august are not where we are today. we're in a good place in knowing and learning and being more -- having a lot more humility. and as an organization and as an
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individual, it's been a tough year, but a year of great progress, and i'm excited about the future. the second and probably important issue for us is that we want to make a difference in this area. not just internally but externally. we've done a great deal to bring more awareness of these issues of domestic violence and sexual assault. we are committed to that. we are working with the various organizations to try to make sure that we as my advisers like to say, normalize the conversation. bring awareness. understand what victims and survivors are going through. one of the most compelling moments i had of this entire fall was going to shelters or going to a hotline center and being able to speak to the advocates and hear the fear, the emotion, the economic consequences. that is compelling and it will
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make you understand this issue much more deeply. and we as the nfl and this commissioner understands it a lot better today than it did before. and i think think we in the nfl want to make this an important issue where we can make a difference in society in general. because this is a problem in the broader society. >> commissioner taking into account what the mexican market means for the league the largest attendttendance, it's been 2005 since the league had a regular season game in mexico city. the fans don't understand why. can you explain to them why? >> john, we have tremendous fans in mexico. we had a tremendous experience with a regular season game down there. as you know, it was our first ever. it was a tremendous success for us. we want to get back there. we want to play more games there. it's a combination of stadium
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availability, making sure we can do it at the standards and level that we expect to do it. when we do it, we want to do it well. we have had a tremendous amount of noekfocus in london, but we're looking at other markets including mexico. we certainly hope to be back there soon. >> rachel nichols from cnn. roger, you guys have faced a lot of problems over this past year that have a really wide range. but a lot of the issues have in common the conflict of interest. when you do something like hire an outside investigator like ted wells into the patriots investigation, you're still paying him and robert kraft who owns the patriots is still paying you. so even when you do everything right in one of those situations, it opens you guys up to a credibility gap with some of the public and even with some of your most high-profile players. what steps can you guys take in the future to mitigate some of those conflict of interest issues? >> well, rachel, i don't agree
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with you in a lot of the assumptions you make in your question. i think we have had people that have had uncompromising integrity. robert mueller is an example. i think you asked me the same question last fall about a conflict of interest. their integrity is impeccable. ted wells' integrity is impeccable. these are professional that's bring an outside expertise, outside perspective. and their conclusions are drawn only by the evidence and only by the attempt to try to identify that truth. so i think we have done an excellent job of bringing outside cultantedde consultants in. somebody has to pay them rachel. so unless you're volunteering, which i don't think you are, we will do that. but we have the responsibility to protect the integrity of the league, whether we have an owner that's being investigated or whether we have a commissioner that's being investigated, they're done at the highest level of integrity and quality.
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>> roger good morning. ron mott, nbc news. a number of your players have been quite vocal about criticizing you and your leadership. two-part relationship. one, how would you describe your relationship with the league's players and, b, what plan dozen you have in mind to try to improve that relationship going forward? >> well, ron obviously there are close to 3,000 players at any given time in the nfl. i communicate with our players on a regular basis. in almost every case privately. i seek their input, particularly when we're making decisions that affect players which are most decisions. we spend an awful lot of time talking with former players who are great input into our personal conduct policy. we also reach out to the players association for their perfect perspective perspective. so we are not going to agree on every matter. we understand that. we
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but no one has more respect to the players, what they do in our communities, what they do on the field, the importance to the nfl going forward. and i've had the great privilege of being able to work closery with them for now some 30-some-odd years. that's ray privilege for me. their well-being, their future are important to me. we spend a great teal of time on player health and safety. we want to make this game as safe as possible for them. we want to make sure we do everything to make sure while they're here and when they trngsz out of football we're helping them be successful. i will continue to reach out to them. i will continue to have the input they're willing to give me. we will also work with the players association. but when we disagree on matters such as the personal conduct policy, we're not going to compromise the nfl. we agree that we need to raise standards in the nfl. that's what our owners say. we agree that we have to make sure we're not completely reliant on law enforce. our owners agree with that.
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>> roger goodell, the commissioner of the nfl talking about what he said has been a very tough year, including the very prominent case of ray rice the former boston raven who was caught on video decking his then-fiancee in a hotel elevator. but we missed at the very top of this a bit of good news from the nfl. the rate of concussions among nfl players fell 25% this season, despite an increase in the overall number of injuries. and if you go back to the previous season, the rate of concussions is down 36%. dr. earnest patty is a senior attending physician of emergency medicine at st. barnabas hospital. so it appears that some of what the nfl is doing to reduce concussion sz working. >> it definitely appears some of it is working, john. good afternoon, by the way. what they've been looking at is you know a number of practices during the preseason have been decreased. the overall time the players spending on the field has been consult back a little bit. and they feel that in
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conjunction with equipment changes and better tackling methodses by the players have been contributing to the decrease in the concussion rate. although injuries seem to be up this year the serious injuryies like concussions, the numbers are proving they seem to be down. >> bill belichick of the patriots says he thinks the injuries are up because they're not letting them practice as much. >> exactly. that's one of the controversies involved there. but if it's cutting back on serious injuries like concussions, that's a good thing. >> dr. erinest patti, thanks very much. >> thanks, john. >> we'll be back in just a moment. begins with the cloud. this is "titanfall," the first multi-player game built and run on microsoft azure. empowering gamers around the world to interact in ways they never thought possible. this cloud turns data into excitement.
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big super bowl weekend ahead. things for spend ring your friday with us. >> it will be fun regardless. hope you have a great weekend. shannon bream is in for gretchen on "the real story" which starts now. thanks, guys.
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one of the five gitmo prisoners traded for bowe bergdahl reaching out for terror pals. mitt romney make as his decision. and seahawks star richard sherman may not make the super bowl. the event that could take him offline. "the real story" starts right now. the fate of two isis hostages hangs in the balance as ransom and prisoner swap deadlines have come and gone. isis had promised to kill the hostages including the last of two japanese men apparently held in syria. the first was beheaded after ransom demands were unmet. there is no word on a jordanian pilot. isis demanded they release a would be suicide bomber by yesterday to spare the life of the pilot. connor powell, what are you hearing about these isis hostages? >> reporter:

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