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tv   The Early Show  CBS  June 29, 2011 7:00am-9:00am PDT

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squids. >> 23 feet long. >> and seahorses. >> squid and seahorses. >> we'll go with that. >> thanks for watching. see you tomorrow. >> caption colorado, llc good morning. out of control. firefighters in new mexico struggle to keep a raging wildfire away from the los alamos nuclear laboratory and thousands of barrels after radioactive waste. we are live for the very latest on where that blaze is headed and when officials hope to have it contained. deadly attack. taliban militants kill 11 people at a major hotel used by westerners in the heart of afghanistan's capital as nato helicopters are forced to fly in to stop those attackers. we are in kabul for the fallout from both the attack and the taliban threat. here comes arlene, the first tropical storm of the atlantic season heading for the texas/mexico border bringing with it heavy winds and rains and the potential for flash
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flooding "early" this wednesday morning, june 29th, 2011. captioning funded by cbs good morning. good to have you with us on this wednesday. i'm erica hill. >> i'm chris wragge. new poll numbers out. you were gone. >> good to be back. the poll numbers not the ones we're talking about. a new poll out this morning, though. really a political poll from cbs news and the "the new york times" and frankly not a lot of comfort in if for anybody. president obama's approval rating pretty much where it was three weeks ago and below 50% and getting low marks the way he is handling the economy although not necessarily blamed for it. the poll that shows interestingly that a lot of republican voters not happy with their choices at this stage in the game. what could that mean heading forward? we will dissect that a little bit for you and folks coming up with reports from the white
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house, the key state of iowa as well. so we will get you the latest. >> a lot going on in iowa including a movie premiere we will talk about coming up. we beimpin wigin with the no wildfire. cbs news correspondent cynthia bowers is in los alamos, new mexico, with the latest on that story for us this morning. cynthia, good morning. >> reporter: good morning, chris. beyond the canyon behind me is the big los alamos building itself and the fire. although we are being kept well away for safety, the air here is filled with smoke. today could be dicey for firefighters. winds could hit 30 to 35 miles per hour. and the fear is that the fire could explode as it rages towards the town and the lab. the fire line here that they are holding is 16 miles long, and so far fire crews say they have zero containment. the los conscious fire rages on for a fourth day as more than
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800 firefighters battle the blaze around the clock. crews are growing weary, but they refuse to give up. >> it's dangerous out there. they are getting tired. we're watching and trying to rotate them, platoon them so they can sleep. when you have something like this in your backyard and you're protecting your neighbor's house it's hard to relax. >> reporter: at one point tuesday, fire jumped to within 50 feet of the los alamos national laboratory which has been evacuated. the birth place of the atomic now houses 20,000 barrels of plutonium contaminated waste. >> our facilities and nuclear materials are protected and safe. >> reporter: so far, 61,000 acres of forest have been consumed by the blaze. dry conditions and shifting winds have made it difficult to contain and authorities fear it could continue to grow. >> i seriously believe it could easily go to a hundred thousand acres. god, i hope not. >> reporter: mandatory evacuation issued monday for
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11,000 los alamos residents. despite the warning, some people remind behind, including volunteers at this local elks lodge who prepare meals for firefighters. >> we understand there's risk, but this is our community and this is how we support our community. >> reporter: right now, the fire is separated from the town and lab by a mountain ridge. if the fire crests that ridge, there are two canyons filled with dry trees, fuel for the fire. one leads into town, the other, to the lab. the fire chief here says conditions are the worst he has seen since an enormous fire in 2000. amazingly, they feel this year's fire was triggered by a downed power line. cynthia bows, cbs news, los alamos, new mexico. this morning, new worries about the taliban after a deadly a attack by militants on a major hotel in kabul. mandy clark is in afghanistan this morning with the latest. mandy, good morning.
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>> reporter: good morning. well, they are sweeping the hotel searching for evidence and any more casualties from the taliban assault that left at least ten people dead. the attack began late last night with an explosion at the first checkpoint leading to the hotel and then gunmen armed with rocket propelled grenades and assault rifles entered the building spraying bullets in the lobby. eyewitnesses say some of the militants were wearing suicide vests. the attack lasted until the early hours of this morning. only ended when a coalition helicopter opened fire, killing at least two insurgents on the rooftop. this morning, stunned survivors were still leaving. this hotel is isolated, on a hill and considered one of the safest locations in kabul. last night, it was playing host to a number of regional officials who were in the capital for government meetings. this attack seems to be a message from the taliban that they can strike at any time.
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17-year-old ahmed tamean was at the hotel when the assault began. did you see any of the attackers? he says they were wearing police uniforms and they were firing at everyone. i ran out the back door. despite the brazen attack, today's government meeting went ahead as scheduled. the subject under discussion -- security. as foreign troops hand over territory to afghan forces. the identities of the dead are still unknown. at first, we were told that the victims were all afghan vilveiavilve ia civilians and two police officers but they say one spanish man is among the dead. >> mandy clark, thanks. on to politics. sarah palin's latest trip to iowa at the premiere of a new documentary about her. the former alaska governor said she is not running for anything, just yet. cbs news political correspondent jan crawford is in pella, craw
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iowa, with more. >> these streets were full of people. not only from pella from all over the state and the midwest. some people drove five hours to get here and didn't have a ticket to the movie. it was sold out. they wanted a chance to see sarah palin and if lucky maybe get a picture. >> reporter: here in a town of pella, iowa, sarah palin was greeted by hundreds of devoted fans all wishing for one thing -- >> i hope she runs. >> i hope she makes her announcement here in pella. >> reporter: while bristol palin told fox news her mother had made her decision, palin quickly shot that idea down. >> still thinking about it. >> together with her husband todd to see the premiere of "undefeated" a movie about her life and leadership palin's appearance in this state has set off a round of speculation about her plans.
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but palin indicated there wouldn't be an announcement from her any time soon. >> there are still many, many months down the road that need to be traveled on before anybody has to make up their mind and declare candidatesy. >> reporter: she didn't exactly discourage the speculation either. telling reporters she appreciated efforts of volunteers and that she would give 110% in iowa if she decides to run. craig robinson, editor of the website iowa says that is what voters in this state have come to expect. >> she has to put in a lot of hard work. i think the initial buzz would rocket her to the top of the polls but to stay there she has to put in a lot of shoe leather. >> reporter: outside the vote was close to unanimous. >> she doesn't think of herself being better myself or any person in the community. >> reporter: a few undecided said the movie convinced them she should run. >> i definitely have an interest
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now. more in sarah palin and we will see where it goes from here. >> reporter: barbara summed it up in two words. >> go sarah, right? >> yeah, yeah. >> reporter: now, about 350 people inside watched the movie with palin. they clapped and cheered throughout the whole movie, especially, chris, during a part they show a clip of a speech and she says, mr. president, game on. i think they think maybe that means she may be running. afterwards, she talked to a lot of people. she said in the movie theater this movie was not about her, but american values. >> jan, tremendous enthusiasm for sarah palin you mentioned last night but according to the latest cbs news/"the new york times" poll the same cannot be said for the rest of the republican candidates. 67% of those polled not enthusiastic about the current candidates. what does this say? >> reporter: that's right. those numbers kind of showing that lack of enthusiasm for what some people say is a really lackluster field of republican candidates so far is why you're seeing a lot of people calling
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for someone else like sarah palin. now she has got her own group of loyal fans that will be with her no matter what but you're see ago call for a texas governor rick perry to get in. at the same time, though, there is growing enthusiasm for someone else and i heard it last night, too. michele bachmann. >> there you go. all right. cbs' jan crawford in pella, iowa, thank you. at the white house, president welcome plans a news conference, and important talks on the budget. all of this as that latest cbs news/"the new york times" poll you just mentioned shows his job approval rating is at 47%. that is down a point from earlier this month. cbs news senior white house correspondent bill plante has more on the numbers for us. >> reporter: the numbers are not very comfort to go a president running for re-election because they suggest whatever what happens between now and election day, the economy will remain president obama's biggest problem. just 39% approve of the president's handling of the economy.
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but that is up 2 percentage points from our june 8th poll. a majority in our survey don't blame president obama for the state of the economy. they blame a combination of the bush administration and wall street. but when asked the question to which campaign strategists pay the most attention, is the country on the right direction or the wrong track? 63% say we're on the wrong track. the economy and jobs were very much on the president's mind as he visited an alcoa aluminum factory in iowa and makes parts for aeroproducts and manufactures aircraft wings. the wings of air force one were made here. here, things are looking up, but the president conceded that that doesn't matter much to americans still out of work. >> here at this plant, the workers that were laid off during the darkest days of the recession have all been hired back. but, you know, for a lot of americans, those numbers don't matter much if they are still out of work. or if they have a job that
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doesn't pay enough to pay the mortgage or the bills. >> reporter: the manufacturing sector is one of the few bright spots in the economy. bureau of labor statistics say manufacturing jobs are up to almost 12 million, 1.4% increase from last year, but with the overall unemployment rate stuck above 9%, the president is forced to acknowledge wherever he goes that things aren't good enough. >> so we have got more work to do. and that work is going to take some time. the promise -- the problems that we developed didn't happen overnight, we're not going to solve them overnight either. but we will solve them. >> reporter: now, the president is going to hold his first news conference in three months later today and when he does, look for him to acknowledge and to insist that the sacrifices necessary to make a deal on the budget can't come from just the middle class. that they have to be shared equally. that sof course, is code for
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changing the tax rates among the wealthy among other things. >> joining us from washington is michael crowley who is a washington bureau chief. good to have you with us this morning. bill laid out plenty of reasons there and new poll out this morning. traditionally an incumbent can be tough to beat. is that the case in 2012? >> incumbent is tough to beat you're right. when the economy is in this condition it gets harder. unemployment over 8% in the modern era it's very hard for a president to get re-elected and i think that that really even though voters are not blaming barack obama for the economic crash it would appear from your poll they do not like his handling of the economy and i think is the key. >> that is the key and something republicans are taking full advantage of. . when you look at the race there, as we saw earlier 67% of republicans say they are not enthusiastic about the candidates they have. is there a strong contender at this point? >> well, you know, the bad news for the president in this
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situation is that voters are dissatisfied with his handling of the economy. the good news is that i think the candidates, the white house really fears are not catching on with republicans. i think that white house strategists are concerned about mitt romney, former ambassador to china and jon huntsman and feel they could appeal to the middle in the general election and threaten the president. those candidates are not catching on and huntsman particularly who is not registering in the polls. republicans are excited about bachmann and palin but i don't think the white house thinks those candidates can beat them in november so a good dynamic for the president obama. >> there is the race among republicans for the nomination which is as you're pointing out a different criteria and different base essentially than the person who ultimately wins and moves on to the general election. >> that's right. it's particularly true right now. i think because the tea party base of the republican party is expecting some pretty tough talks, some red meat that haunts
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a candidate in a general election. michele bachmann has luxury of appeal to that crowd known for fiery rhetoric and romney, on the other hand, i think is trying to charter more middle course and can he get the nomination without going so far to the right it would become a problem for him in a general election and sort of problem that hillary clinton faced in 2008 which she tried to veer going too far from the left. ultimately the democrats outflanked her on the left. >> michael crowley, thank you. >> thank you. jeff glor is here with other headlines. good morning. in greece this morning, more violence on the streets of athens. riot police used tear gas as thousands continue demonstrating there. the second straight day. protesting against tough new s austerity measures and tax cuts. the parliament vote on the bill this morning and another step whether greece can avoid another financial default. bank of america bad mortgage
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backed securities and worth $8.5 billion and settle claims by a group of investors including the federal reserve bank of new york and the world's largest bondholder. they say they were sold poor when the housing market plunged. johnson & johnson recalling bottles of tylenol extra strength capsules and manufactured in 2009 and recalled because of a musty odor which is
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thanks so much. that is your latest weather. welcome back, erica. >> good morning. nice to say hello to you. >> likewise. >> everyone missed you. >> i missed all of you! but i liked sleeping in! ahead this morning, finally a positive sign from the slumping housing markets as the
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price goes up. another showdown in greece. protesters hitting the streets again. lawmakers vote on debt relief measures that could have a worldwide financial impact. we are live in rathence with the very latest. you're watching "the early show" on cbs. you go. it's a cloud of depression. and although you've been on an antidepressant for at least six weeks, you're frustrated that your depressive symptoms are still with you. seroquel xr, when added to an antidepressant, is approved for the treatment of major depressive disorder. for many, taking seroquel xr with an antidepressant was proven more effective than an antidepressant alone for treating unresolved symptoms of depression. talk to your doctor about seroquel xr. then visit for a free trial offer. call your doctor if you have unusual changes in mood, behavior, or thoughts of suicide. antidepressants can increase these in children,teens, and young adults. elderly dementia patients taking seroquel xr
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a soldier from albany has been killed in afghanistan, during his th good morning. it's 7:25. in the headlines, a soldier from albany has been killed in afghanistan during his third deployment overseas. 28-year-old specialist kevin hilaman died last weekend when insurgents attacked his unit. he received several medals including the bronze star and purple heart. fairfield police are looking for three suspects after a deadly robbery at the travis dairy. police are not saying what kind of injuries the business owner suffered. he was though able to describe the attackers shortly before he died in an ambulance on the way to the hospital. and a rare event in california. the state will apparently have a budget by the time the fiscal year begins on friday. democrats in the legislature sent a budget bill to the governor last night.
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they were able to pass it on a simple majority vote because the plan has no tax increases or extensions. extensions. traffic and weather coming right up. ,,,, [ man ] i got this new citi thankyou card and started earning loads of points. you got a weather balloon with points?
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thornton avenue, we have an accident out there blocking sounds like two lanes. so traffic is pretty slow and go all the way from highway 92 in those southbound lanes of 880. all right. elsewhere at the bay bridge toll plaza, check out this backup. the metering lights are on. now, there is also an accident sounds like just past the pay gates. you can see that traffic though is very slow from sounds like the macarthur maze to the metering lights. and then it is pretty sluggish from the incline towards treasure island. so they are working to clear that accident now. that is your traffic. for your forecast, here's erika. >> thank you, elizabeth. let's take a look outside. we are definitely seeing those clouds making their way over the forecast region towards the east. still seeing or -- here's some reports of scattered showers, but this will clear out by later today into tomorrow. our expected highs for today still trending below average for today. but as we look at our extended forecast, we can see that things are warming up nicely.
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welcome back to "the early show" this morning. it is an angry and tense scene outside greece's parliament building in athens. thousands of protesters there, many fighting with police as lawmakers debate a package of budget cuts and other measures to keep the greek government from defaulting on its huge debt. the people there in the streets, riot police on hand, shots of tear gas a few moments ago but definitely a fluid situation in athens right now. >> that debt crisis in greece getting a lot of attention around the globe, because it threatens financial markets around the globe. we are live this morning in athens with the latest on that, and as chris said this is a fluid situation so we'll be covering the protests as well. welcome back to "the early show" everyone, nice to have you with us at half past the hour.
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>> jeff glor has another look at the top headlines. hi. >> good morning once again to you. fire managers say today is a make or break day in the battle in the fire in new mexico near the los alamos lab. there are up to 30,000 barrels are radioactive waste there. officials have fire resistant foam ready if the flames get too close. the fire has burned over 95 squire miles this morning. police are searching for victims at the intercontinental hotel in kabul last night, where taliban attacked last night. it ended in a rooftop battle with a nato helicopter. in egypt gangs of mostly young protesters clashed with riot police for a second straight day. they are demanding officers be prosecuted in that brutal
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for the first time this year, home prices are going up and most major cities, and according to a closely watched index the average u.s. home is now worth the same as it was eight years ago, but the housing market still has a long way to go as cbs news national correspondent dean reynolds reports. >> reporter: to industry experts, one month's worth of rising home prices does not mean housing is out of the basement. >> we're starting to see at least a little level of normalcy. it feels okay. doesn't feel great but it feels okay. >> reporter: home prices in most major cities rose in april, the most recent months studyed acording to the monthly index run by yale economics professor robert shiller. >> the report makes me a little bit more optimistic that home price also go up. >> reporter: the annual wave of
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spring house shopping was behind the most recent numbers which included sharp increases in washington, d.c., san francisco, atlanta, and seattle, but it's far from a strong upward trend. thousands of foreclosures are keeping prices down, government incentives are gone and things may well get worse. >> we have a big shadow inventory of homes that might be foreclosed that haven't been yet. we have a lot of people who are waiting to sell their house if they can get a halfway decent price. >> reporter: that kind of caution may well explain what's going on in charlotte, detroit, las vegas, miami, tampa and chicago, all of which have now reached their lowest home price levels in four years, so there are mixed signals from the market, with no signs of much clarity coming soon. >> i think there was a lot of people who thought when this thing turns it's going to turn super fast. it's not going to turn super fast. it will take a while for the ship to move and go in the right direction.
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>> reporter: data from several more months will be needed to see if that's really happening. dean reynolds, cbs news, chicago. >> joining us now is cbs news business and economics correspondent rebecca jarvis. good to see you this morning. >> good to see you. >> good news to report this morning. let's talk about how positive this is for those looking to sell. >> home prices bounced up in the month of april by 0.7%, a month over month increase. when you look back at what happened last year, however, prices are still down. some people will tell you listen, while it's positive and we want to continue to see this trend it's not exactly the kind of thing where we're ringing the bells just yet and saying everything is getting about tbe. a lot of this is about foreclosed homes and this is driving up the price. >> ring some bells. >> the little ones. >> there are pockets of posit e positivity in this report. let's talk about that one. >> particularly on the west
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coast is where we do see some things looking higher. for example in san francisco, washington, d.c., was the big winner in this month's index, but we are seeing some pockets as well in atlanta and seattle, and a lot of people are saying that those are markets where some people are dipping their toe back in the water as investors potentially buying up second, even third homes. >> what trends are we seeing farce people buying? >> what's interesting about the trend is there are people who are actually buying in their own neighborhoods now and we're seeing more and more people saying if there's a foreclosure down the block i'm better off buying that foreclosure and renting it to a family. there is some interest in that. right now more and more people can't get loans to buy homes so as a result they need to rent and single family homes are natural for a family to rent from. >> we have good numbers and see the spots to review some of the metro areas they're on the decline and not doing well. >> and these areas we're showing you right now, detroit, chicago, las vegas, charlotte as well as tampa and miami they're as bad
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and worse than they were in the great depression, that means that prices have fallen more than they did in the great depression in terms of these home markets. >> so really tough areas we're going to see any comeback any time soon. >> it's got to be jobs related and also the local economies here are struggling in many of these places. >> rebecca jarvis thanks, good to see you. come up next, turmoil in the streets of athens as greek lawmakers try to stop a government default that could spark a debate around the world. this is "the early show" on cbs.
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another tense day in greece, demonstrators there in the streets for a second day in a row as lawmakers decide on a debt cutting plan that includes painful spending cuts and tax hikes. cbs news correspondent mark phillips is in athens with the latest. mark, hello. >> reporter: good morning, erica. there's a lot of tear gas floating around here. this is the ugliest day of the confrontations so far between greek authorities and the protesters. this is the central square in
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athens. the parliament building is the head of the square lined by thousands of policemen, perhaps tens of thousands of people have gathered in the square to try to keep parliament from doing its business. for the second day running, athens central square has become the front line in a running battle between demonstrators and police. the protesters have come to bear witness as the country's government votes on yet another package of spending cuts so that it can get yet another international loan it has little hope of ever paying back. there is an northwestability about these demonstrations, frustration soon turns to violence. >> this is no situation for human beings and for democracy. you can hear. >> reporter: and this has been the expression of public anger, greece is broke and many feel ordinary people are being made to pay the price in higher
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taxes, lower pensions and staggering unemployment rates especially among the young. not that anybody on the streets has come up with a better idea how to reduce the national debt, that is bigger than the country's gdp. >> i bet you 10 million people being 300 million in debt cannot repay it. all we have is sun, tourism, a few vegetables and olive oil. >> reporter: the government's package will make $40 billion in spending cuts and a sell off of state assets some are calling a fire sale. these are the conditions being demanded by the international community before it pours more good money after bad into the sinking greek economy. the government vote here this afternoon is expected to pass, although it is expected also to be close but this is going to get even worse tomorrow when the second series of government measures, the specific cuts that they will make in public services and in pensions and also on the sell-off of
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government assets will come to a vote tomorrow could be even worse than today. >> mark phillips in athens thanks. we'll be right back. this is "the early show" on cbs. [ female announcer ] we asked coffee lovers to come and try coffee-mate's new cafe collection flavors. then we asked them to show us how the taste inspired them. new rich caramel macchiato. one of three new ways to add your flavor. with coffee-mate, from nestle.
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designed for the technology to the best of its ability. >> fly. >> fly? >> reporter: the oscar winning "avatar" set an extremely high bar for movies two years ago. >> release the cracken. >> reporter: since then, dozens of critical disappointments like "clash of the titans" and "green lantern" commercial flop. that makes moviegoers think twice about paying the higher prices for the three-2 tickets. >> paying an extra $10 for a 3-d ticket not really what i'm wanting to do. >> sometimes it's worth it. most of the time it's not. >> they're going with the trend right now. eventually people will stop watching 3-d. >> the future of 3-d is shaky at this moment in time because frankly at lo lly a lot of movi done it poorly. >> reporter: after "avatar" movie theaters thought 3-d would
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be their salvation. >> not only did it add a premium to ticket prices it was a way to protect against piracy. you can't sit in a theater and videotape a 3-d movie and put it online because it's blurry. >> reporter: so studios rushed out and turned some 2-d movies like "the last airbender" into 3-d movies, while turning out dozens of 3-d disappointments. >> movies like "avatar" 3-d was 71% of the overall gross. "alice in wonderland" also 70%. this year you just see it dropping, dropping, dropping down to 56%, 45% on movies like "thor" and "kung fu panda." makes you wonder how much further it has to go. >> forget it. >> reporter: if the final harry potter movie takes off in 3-d, the format might create movie magic once again, but it's up to "transformers" to lead the charge and director michael bay says he and his movie are up to
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the challenge. >> is it a make or break? it's not a make or break but i think this movie is one that would really show you what the technology really can do. >> reporter: according to audience members coming out of last night's "transformers" sneak peek the future of 3-d looks a little brighter. >> all i can say it was awesome. >> felt like you were in the midst of it all. fabulous. >> the best 3-d movie i've seen. >> reporter: quite a transformation indeed. bill whitaker, cbs news, hollywood. >> high expectations, one analyst says anything less than $200 million to $250 million at the box office over the fourth of july weekend would be considered lackluster. zero stars at the review i saw this morning, but don't listen to me. this is "the early show." i'm sure it's great. ♪ ♪
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he a man is dead... the victim of an attack, d good morning, everyone. it's:55. time for your news headlines from cbs 5 at 7:55. i'm grace lee. a man is dead this morning, the victim of an attack during a convenience store robbery in fairfield. police say that the man, who was working at the store, managed to call them after last night's attack on east travis boulevard. but so far, police are not saying anything about the nature of the attack. california is almost certain to have a budget plan in place when the new fiscal year starts on friday. last night state lawmakers approved the deal reached earlier in the week between governor brown and his fellow democrats in the legislature. now, they say that the plan closes what is left of the state's deficit. that's about $9.6 billion. because the plan contains no tax increases, it only needed a
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simple majority to pass. not one single republican voted for it. the governor could sign it as soon as today. and we'll have a check of your traffic and weather, sunnier skies? well tell new just a moment. -- we'll tell you in just a moment. i, i enjoy the breeze on my tongue. well uh, and every weekend, seems like we're headin' down to the lake. we're pullin' a boat or somethin'. i don't know why. i just do. it's not a problem. i don't mind as long as we always stop at chevron and get that techron stuff. my ears flop around too. check it out. [ male announcer ] your car takes care of you, care for it. chevron with techron. care for your car. it's hard work; i need a nap.
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good morning. all right. out to fremont, southbound 880
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approaching thornton. we have this accident here, it was just cleared to the right shoulder. so it's still pretty stacked up in the southbound lanes. brake lights to 238 but slow from fremont boulevard north. 880 through oakland looks okay. as play florida at 7:05 at the coliseum. accident approaching the pay gates on westbound 80 blocking one lane now cleared but traffic is stacked up to the maze. here is erika with the forecast. >> clouds making their way east. a lot of low, mid- and high- level clouds. but as the sun comes out moisture will evaporate and we'll see partly cloudy skies to end the day. here's our expected highs. we have 68 for santa rosa and fremont. we are going to trend into the 60s and 70s below average. and our extended forecast showing us some warmer temperatures on the way. 90s.
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a little bit of a courtroom surprise for whitey bulger. prosecutors want the judge to throw out the original charges that let bulger to go on the run 16 years ago. >> they didn't have a change of heart but they say it's a strategy move. the mob boss has a better chance of going on trial for other charges. >> twists and turns. the story itself is fascinating. as we learn more about what may have happened over the past 16 years. erica hill along with chris wragge. >> right up to boston where david robichaud has the latest on the case this morning. david, good morning. >> reporter: good morning.
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bulger has been charged with extortion, loan sharking, witness tampering and conspiracy. but yesterday inside this boston courthouse, the government made it very clear there's only one thing they want to get him on -- murder. whitey bulger was back in court tuesday in his hometown of boston where he stands accused of killing 19 people. >> i was thinking that he was good in orange. >> reporter: she's the wife of one of bulger's alleged victims. he was shot while driving a friend who was believed to be bulger's intended target. >> i'd like to see this go all the way. >> reporter: inside the courthouse, the u.s. attorney asked the judge to drop the 1994 racketeering charges that caused bulger to flee and instead focus on the murder charges saying -- the 19 families of murder victims have been denied justice for many years because the defendant has successfully eluded law enforcement apprehension. mike donahue's youngest son thomas, just 8 when his father
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was killed, said he supports the government's decision to streamline the prosecution of the 81-year-old former gangster. >> if he was a younger man, i wouldn't want fwhig to be dropped on this guy, but he's an old man. time's not on our side. i think it's a good idea to fast track it. >> reporter: the judge then canceled the remainder of the court hearing to give bulger's defense a chance to object to the dismissal of the charges. >> from a tactical perspective, i think it was a brilliant decision. the charges are more recent and there are fewer legal issues. >> reporter: left with the issue of whether bulger can afford an attorney or needs to be appointed a public defender. he's expected back in court on thursday. now, bulger's alleged accomplice, his longtime girlfriend katherine greig, who he's been on the run with for 16 years, she's expected to be in court today. her attorney asked for that to be delayed to july 11th. >> david, thank you very much.
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joining us now is one of new york's best known defense attorneys who has represented mobsters john gotti and sammy "the bull" gravano. we just heard that the judge is postponing the decision on appointing the request for a public defender. it is going to be difficult for bulger to get someone to represent him? >> i don't think it will be difficult. the judge is proceeding carefully here. the bottom line is that a defendant who claims he's unable to afford a lawyer is given an opportunity to fill out a financial statement, swear to its contents and, unless the judge has specific evidence to the contrary, he'll appoint a lawyer. >> let's talk about the feds dropping the earlier indictment that was the reason that bulger fled to begin with and they want to basically get him on the murder charges, why why was this done? and is this a better ploy? because from what i've read, they had a better case with those charges more so than with the murder charges. >> it's not a question of a better case. i know that the lawyers -- it
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was reported this morning that the lawyers thought that the government was forum shopping spop that lead meese to believe that there must be two different judge, one assigned to the rico case and one assigned to the murder cases. it may well be that that's an issue in the case and the government's trying to control which young it goes to. >> you've had to defend people of notoriety before. what would your defense be at this point? >> too early to tell. what a defense lawyer is doing is gathering the facts trying to ferret out the weaknesses in the government's case. >> he's 81 years old. is there the possibility that they may find out that he's got still enough information or contacts that he could work out some type of deal? >> given his history, it's highly unlikely. the history of corruption with the fbi would not make him an attractive source for the government. this case is destined for trial. >> what about the girlfriend? we heard from david's report, they're trying to put off her seeing a judge for the next
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month or so. what is her defense, sand there a defense for her? >> there may be a defense. i heard reports that she may mount a coercion defense. that's somewhat difficult because a coercion defense requires that the person allegedly coerced, go to the police at the earliest opportunity, to resolve the problem. but she has far more flexibility. whitey bulger is 81 years old. so the proposition or the possibility of a plea bargain sun likely because any sentence is virtually a death sentence. >> could she ever play that defense, though that i didn't know he was a mobster or is that far-fetched. >> i don't know if that passes the giggle test. >> yeah. because she did lead a pretty good life. it wasn't as though she was held against her will. >> that's probably right. but she has a lot more flexibility because of her age. >> he's 81 years old. there's reports that, you know, his health may not be stellar at this point. but he is 81.
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does that play into the way the judge would sentence or perceive this case? >> in a white collar case, perhaps it would be part of the calculus. in a case like this where there's charge of 19 murders, each one carries a mandatory life sentence, i think that that would be pretty tough. >> as far as the feds found two cell phones and they're analyzing to determine what type of help he's received along the way, will this be one of those things where we see a number of other people that aided and abetted him over the years come into play and this could go on for quite some time. >> it could. but the cell phone information may be relevant. it may lead to the prosecution of other people. but in order to commit the crime of harboring a fugitive, you have to take affirmative action to aid the fugitive. and merely talking to the fugitive does not violate the law. >> thank you very much. >> nice to see you. >> now here's jeff glor at the newsdesk with a check of the headlines. >> good morning to you. in italy this morning where
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amanda knox is appealing her murder conviction, a potential bombshell this morning. a forensic review of dna used to convict knox in 2007 of killing her british roommate found that some of that dna appears to be contaminated potentially making that forensic evidence unreliable. new clashes between protesters and riot police in greece this morning. crowds threw rocks and bottles as police fired tear gas again. this massive demonstration outside greek parliament where lawmakers vote this morning on a bill to increase taxes and cut benefits. more austerity measures. for greece to get a second financial bailout. hamid karzai is vowing his government will take over afghanistan security despite a brazen taliban attack overnight. insurgents blasted their way into the intercontinental hotel in kabul. 19 people were killed including 8 attackers. that five-hour standoff ended
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after a nato helicopter took out the attackers on a roof. hot weather and high winds could spread that massive wildfire in new mexico this morning. it is getting closer to the los alamos nuclear facility. we're up to 30,000 barrels filled with radioactive waste stands. the fire is less than four miles away from the dump site. 8,000 weary firefighters are working to contain that. >> we're trying to rotate them so they can sleep, but when you have something like this in your backyard and you're protecting your neighbor's house, it's hard to relax. >> the wildfire has already burned more than 51,000 acres and turned los alamos into a ghost town forcing all residents to evacuate. president obama's job approval rating is down slight sli. a new cbs news/"new york times" poll out this morning shows the rating is now at 47%. that's down one point from earlier this month.
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an increase of 2% since our june 8th poll. when asked if the country is going in the right direction, 63% said, no, we're on the wrong track. the president holds a news conference later this morning. he meets with senate democratic leaders on breaking the impasse and talks to raise the debt ceiling. republicans are rejecting higher taxes as part of that deal. >> and the idea of raising taxes, just as we had into what we hope is not another economic downturn, could only make 24 months of high unemployment worse. >> senate majority leader harry reid says republicans are being unrealistic about cutting the debt. >> to do so, we have to deal with some hard truths. my republican friends seem to be living in a fantasy world. >> as we mentioned, president obama will be discussing the debt in his news conference this morning among other things. cbs news will have live coverage starting at 11:30 eastern.
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the search is over to replace dominic strauss-kahn as head of the international mon monetary fund. charley d'agata reporting. >> the new leader of the imf has a reputation for straight talking, and if she's at all concerned about taking over at a time of deep financial crisis, she's not showing it. christine lagarde glided effortlessly from her job as france's finance minister to be the new head of the international monetary fund. >> i feel very proud, very moved and just a little bit sad because it's a whole chapter of my life for france that i now have to move away from. >> reporter: she's been the front-runner since may when her predecessor dominic strauss-kahn stepped down to face charges he raped a hotel maid in new york. the obama administration's
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endorsement of lagarde yesterday sealed the deal. treasury secretary tim geithner called lagarde an exceptional talent. when she announced her candidacy last month, she said she'd bring all my expertise as a lawyer, a minister, a manager and a woman to the job. part of the job application meant facing a grilling by the all-male board. >> translator: when i was questioned for three hours by 24 men, i told myself that it was a good thing that things would change a little. >> reporter: she spent years in the u.s. working for a chicago law firm before moving into politics in 2005. the former champion swimmer will find herself immediately in the deep end facing an economic crisis in greece with potentially disastrous consequences for europe and the u.s. christine lagarde is the first person to head the imf who is not an economist, but analysts say her talent as a skilled
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negotiator is exactly what the imf needs at a time of crisis. >> she has the experience, she has the wit and she has the power, i think, to carry everybody on board. >> lagarde begins her five-year term next week. one of her first priorities will be a speech to the staff at the imf headquarters in washington aimed at boosting morale. >> all right, charlie, thank you. scott pelley has a preview of tonight's "cbs evening news." >> good morning. hundreds of florida's children take refuge in motels. you saw them on "60 minutes." now after a devastating fire, we'll have an update on that story tonight on the "cbs evening news." now back to the "early show." >> 12 minutes past
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this weather report sponsored by prudential. prudential, bring your challenges. >> thanks so much. that's your latest weather. now here's chris. >> marisol, thank you very much. we've all heard of lyme disease but there's another illness spread by the same ticks. we'll tell you how you can protect yourself when we come back here on the "early show." when we come back here on the "the early show" on cbs. ♪ [ male announcer ] and just like that, it's here. a new chance for all of us: people, companies, communities to face the challenges yesterday left behind
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one pill a day. twenty-four hours. zero heartburn. no heartburn in the first place. great. it's trade-up time. 'cause the prices we've been waiting for on those features we've been looking for... are here. which means we can finally kick out the old and pick out the new. we've got 'til july 6th. let's snag some serious savings. more saving. more doing. that's the power of the home depot. get this maytag refrigerator for 698 bucks. that's two hundred dollars off. try finding that price somewhere else. in this morning's "healthwatch","," babseiosis, w
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people get it, nearly 20% of them die. as debbye turner bell reports, it's the same ticks that cause lyme disease. >> reporter: tick season is here, that brings bad memories for jennifer. >> i felt like i had the flu, like i had mono, i couldn't keep on going. >> reporter: she bat babseiosis probably from a tick the cat brought into the house. you knew ticks carry lyme disease. >> never heard of babseiosis. >> reporter: what led you to go to a doctor? >> i had gone to a barbecue and passed out, fainted. i had never fainted in my life. >> reporter: babseiosis is contracted from the same black legged deer tick that transmits lyme disease but doesn't have lyme's tell tale bulls eye rash. >> of the hospitalized patients with severe babseiosis, 1 in 20 has died.
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>> reporter: babseiosis is prevalent in the northeast and upper midwest, locations where lyme disease occurs. unlike lyme disease, bibsiosis is transmitted through the blood supply. the rhode island blood center has taken drastic measures, became the only to screen for babesiosis. >> 25% of adults do not have any symptoms. if they donate blood they may transmit it to the person who gets the blood transfusion. >> reporter: it is a serious problem and both doctors and victims like jennifer hurtslett urge people to take notice. >> i should have listened to my body sooner. if it's not taken care of, it's got to be caught. >> reporter: debbye turner bell, new york. >> the fda is developing a screening test for the parasite.
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doctors say if you have been exposed to ticks and not feeling well, ask your doctor to perform a test for babesiosis in addition to a test for lyme disease. you're watching "the early show" on cbs. "healthwatch" sponsored by prevacid 24 hour. n eat what we t and sleep soundly through the night. prevacid®24hr prevents the acid that causes frequent heartburn all day, all night.
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summertime, time to go to the beach, something you hate to do. >> oh, yeah. >> but you know there's actually more than just the summer to worry about. 2010 was a terrible year for pollution on beaches, meaning hundreds of beaches had to close at some point, and it wasn't just for pollution, a bunch of other factors here. >> we'll look at the best and worst beaches when it comes to water quality and look who is tweeting now. the pope sent out his first twitter message. we have that when we come back. ♪
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officers on scene of a shooting at gough and good morning, it's 8:25. time for some news headlines. i'm frank mallicoat. right now officers at the scene of a shooting on gough and ellis streets in san francisco. a police spokesman says they received a call for help from one of their officers in the area. we have a news crew heading to the scene. today bart will try to reach settlements with six people impacted by the killing of passenger oscar grant by a former bart police officer in 2009. yesterday, bart agreed to pay grant's mother $1.3 million. a train attendant has filed the first lawsuit in the deadly crash between a truck and an amtrak train in nevada. the woman who was injured accused the truck driver and the employer of negligence. investigators say the truck smashed into the train on friday killing six people.
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traffic and weather around the bay area in just a moment. stay with us. ,,,,,,,,,,,,
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good morning. let's start off with a look in hayward. southbound 880 approaching 92 a bad accident across this stretch. two lanes are blocked and it's
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jammed up. unfortunately if you are continuing southbound, we had this earlier accident at thornton in the fremont newark area. that's cleared to the right shoulder. but there are brake lights as far back as highway 92 so two separate accidents causing a lot of slow traffic for the ride southbound 880. heavy traffic here as well coming out of downtown san jose northbound traffic on 280 sluggish approaching the 880 interchange. and we can show you one more live traffic camera. here's live look at pleasanton. your drive is now 25 minutes from the altamont pass to the dublin interchange in these westbound lanes of 580 here. that's your traffic. here's erika are the forecast. >> thanks, elizabeth. clouds still right there but we'll see if they will dissipate once the sun comes out and dry out that moisture paving the way for partly cloudy skies. our highs for today still trending well below average but we will warm up by tomorrow, 90s by friday. ,,,,,,,,
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no, that is not a postcard. that is a live picture, central park, the west side of new york city right there. welcome back -- >> right outside the window there. >> welcome back to "the early show." chris wragge along with erica hill. coming up if you're going to the beach for the fourth of july watch out for pollution, dangerous runoff and sewage are forcing more beaches to close. we'll look at the worst offenders and see how the gulf shore beaches are doing after last summer's bp oil spill. also ahead, if you want to think globally how about eating locally. a lot of restaurants doing everything they can to let you know food comes from local
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farmers. our good friend spike mendelsohn, with some of the local farmers he works with, he brings in the produce locally from restaurants. how the local foods can inspire him and also help his local economy at the same time. >> if you'd like to be inspired later on tonight, watch "the late show" with david letterman, guess what? he's going to be a guest tonight on the big show with david. >> i'm excited and totally nervous, i'm not so graceful. i'm going to fall on my face. >> you'll be fine, like i told jeff you have a default line, let's get this party started. that's good. you got a couple of jokes? >> i'm excited. i don't want to give them away now. >> dave loves it when you try to show him up. i'll rely on my race car driving skills from toronto, my husband
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is from indianapolis. the bond is there. >> jeff glor is at the news desk, with a look at the headlines. jeff this is probably one of your leads tomorrow. >> also the lead top of 7a news. i'll stay up to watch. >> no. >> you can watch it in the morning. >> i'll dvr absolutely. good look, "e." a fast growing wildfire there'sens the los alamos national laboratory. sint know bowers is there this morning. good morning. >> reporter: good morning, it is the smoke, the epa has been monitoring radiation levels and says so far so good. los alamos the lab and los alamos the town remain virtual ghost town this is morning while the life and death battle is being waged by firefighters on the mountain ridge behind me. day fire of the las canchas fire
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dawned as firefighters battled the blaze that threatens the los alamos national laboratory. a few flames reached within 50 feet of the historic birth place of the atomic bomb, the lab houses nuclear weapons and 20,000 barrels of plutonium contaminated waste. >> our facilities and nuclear materials are protected and safe. >> reporter: even though that smaum fire did spread to the lab grounds monday, it was quickly contained and extinguished. dry conditions and shifting winds are fueling the fire and authorities worry it could continue to grow. >> i seriously believe it could easily go to 100,000 acres. >> reporter: 11,000 los alamos residents fled down moan under a mandatory evacuation order but what has everyone's attention is the potential risk of a massive uncontained wildfire slowly closing in on a site that's loaded with nuclear bombs. >> we have fire all around the lab on two sides and it is, when
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you ask how close it is on the border, it's a road away. >> reporter: the winds that had been down the last couple of days could hit 30 to 35 miles an hour this afternoon and those winds could have as much a say in what happens next here as the fire crews themselves. jeff? >> cindy, thank you very much, from los alamos. in afghanistan this morning, new security concerns after that deadly taliban attack at a luxury hotel. cbs news correspondent mandy clark is in kabul with more on that. good morning to you. >> reporter: good morning. well the attack happened late last night with an explosion outside the first checkpoint. gunmen armed with rocket-propelled grenades and assault rifle opened fire in the lobby. eyewitnesses say some were wearing suicide vests and others were wearing police uniforms. the attack lasts several hours and only really ended when coalition forces helicopters
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opened fire and killed a few militants on the rooftop. some stunned survivors were seen leaving the hotel today. now the intercontinental is considered one of the safest locations in kabul, three layers of security and it's up a hill. it was playing host to a number of regional officials who had come to the capital for meetings. those meetings took place today and the main topic under discussion was security, the handover of power from coalition forces to afghan troops. now the taliban has come out and claimed responsibility for the attack and said this assault proves that they can strike at any time. jeff? >> mandy clark from kabul, thank you. an emergency hearing will be held today about the anti-psychotic drugs being forcibly given to jared loughner. lawyers for loughner accused in the tucson shootings in january want the judge to order a stop to that medication.
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ponzi schemer bar nerd madoff is speaking from prison what he calls the unfair 150-year sentence he received. madoff tells the "new york times" the judge in the case made him the "human pinata of wall street." right. federal judge told "the times" he considered the defense a request for mercy but decided madoff didn't deserve a shorter sentence. the seattle police department says it's embarrassed over what could have been a dangerous case of lost and found, how a black assault rifle was left unattended on the trunk of a squad car this week. police apparently were unaware until two citizens reported seeing it. finally many frequent flyers will tell you the most annoying thing about air travel is screaming babies but malaysian airlines has a solution for well-healed travelers, malaysian airlines says they are banning all infants from first class on their flights. 36 minutes past the hour, marysol castro has our final
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check of weather. mary, what do you think? >> as the mother of two bouncing baby boys, i can c this is a cbs news special report. i'm scott pelley. good morning. president obama has called the white house press corps to the east room of the white house for news conference. he will open it with a statement about the number one concern of most americans -- the economy. the unemployment rate has been 9% or higher for 23 of the past 25 months. and nearly 14 million americans are out of work. in a cbs news/"new york times" poll out today, the president's overall job approval rating is just 47%, only 39% approve of his handling of the economy.
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and with numbers like those, there's one more number on the president's mind -- 11/6/12, the date that he is up for re-election. chief white house correspondent chip reid is in the east room waiting for the president. chip. >> reporter: we're going to hear the president talk about exactly that. he's going to argue that the economy is improving too slowly but he's going to urge people to have patience. the other big issue here is going tock the debt limit talks now going on. there seem to be a stalemate between the president and republicans on capitol hill, and we've been wondering when he would finally take advantage of his huge advantage in these negotiations. he can use this lectern behind me as a bully pulpit to try to win the american people over to his point of view. scott? >> thank you, chip. in the east room of the white house, the largest room in the executive mansion, and the room that abigail adams used to hang the white house laundry in. we're standing by now for the president of the united states, speaking to the white house press corps.
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>> good morning, everybody. have a seat, please. i just want to say a few words about the economy, before i take your questions. there are a lot of folks out there who are still struggling with the effects of the recession. many people are still looking for work or looking for a job that pays more. families are wondering how they deal with the broken refrigerator or a busted tranmission or how to finance their kids' college education and they're also worrying about the possibility of lay-offs. the struggles of middle class families were a big problem before the recession hit in 2007. they weren't created overnight, and the truth is our economic challenges are not going to be
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solved overnight. but there are more steps that we can take right now that would help businesses create jobs here in america. today, our administration is trying to take those steps, so we're reviewing government regulations so that we can fix any rules in place that are unnecessary burden on businesses. we're working with the private sector to get small businesses and start-ups the financing they need to grow and expand. and because of the partnership that we've launched with businesses and community colleges, 500,000 workers will be able to receive the right skills and training for manufacturing jobs in companies all across america. jobs that companies are looking to fill. in addition to the steps that my administration can take on our own, there are also things that congress could do right now that will help create good jobs. right now congress can send me a bill that would make it easier
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for entrepreneurs to patent a new product or idea because we can't give innovators in other countries a big leg up when it comes to opening new businesses and creating new jobs. that's something congress could do right now. right now, congress could send me a bill that puts construction workers back on the job rebuilding roads and bridges. not by having government fund and pick every project but by providing loans to proi s ts to companies and states on the basis of merit and not politics, that's pending in congress right now. right now congress can advance a set of trade agreements that would allow american businesses to sell more of their goods and services to countries in asia and south america. agreements that would support tens of thousands of american jobs while helping those adversely affected by trade. that's pending before congress right now. and right now we could give middle class families the security of knowing that the tax cut i signed in december will be
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there for one more year. so there are a number of steps that my administration is taking but there are also a number of steps that congress could be taking right now on items that historically have had bipartisan support and that would help put more americans back to work. many of these ideas have been tied up in congress for some time. but, as i said, all of them enjoy bipartisan support, and all of them could help grow the economy. so i urge congress to act on these ideas now. of course, one of the most important and urgent things we can do for the economy is something that both parties are working on right now and that's reducing our nation's deficit. over the last few weeks, the vice president has been leading the negotiations with democrats and republicans on this issue, and they've made some real progress in narrowing down the differences. as of last week, both parties had identified more than 1
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trillion worth of spending cuts already. but everyone also knows that we'll need to do more to close the deficit. we can't get to the $4 trillion in savings that we need by just cutting the 12% of the budget that pays for things like medical research and education funding and food inspectors and the weather service. and we can't just do it by making seniors pay more for medicare. so we're going to need to look at the whole budget, as a said several months ago, and we've got to eliminate waste wherever we find it and make tough decisions about worthy priorities, and that means trimming the defense budget, while still meeting our security need. it mean we'll have to tackle entitlements, as long as we keep faith with seniors and children with disabilities by maintaining the fundamental security that medicare and medicaid provide. and, yes, we're going to have to tackle spending in the tax code. there's been a lot of discussion
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about revenues and raising taxes in recent weeks. i want to be clear about what we're proposing here. i spent the last two years cutting taxes for ordinary americans and i want to extend those middle class tax cuts. the tax cuts i'm proposing we get rid of are tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires. tax breaks for oil companies and hedge fund managers and corporate jet owners. it would be nice if we could keep every tax break there is, but we've got to make some tough choices here if we want to reduce our deficit. if we choose to take tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires and keep a tax break for corporate jet owners, if we choose to keep tax breaks for oil and gas companies that are making hundreds of billions of dollars, then that means we've got to cut some kids off from getting a college
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scholarship. that means we've got to stop funding certain grants for medical research. that means that food safety may be compromised. that means that medicare has to bear a greater part of the burden. those are the choices we have to make. so the bottom line is this, any agreement to reduce our deficit is going to require tough decisions and balanced solutions. and before we ask seniors to pay more for health care, before we cut our children's education, before we sacrifice our commitment to the research and innovation that will help create more jobs in the economy, i think it's only fair to ask an oil company or a corporate jet owner that has done so well to give up that tax break that no other business enjoys. i don't think that's real radical. i think the majority of americans agree with that. so the good news is, because of
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the work that's been done, i think we can actually bridge our differences. i think there's a conceptual framework that would allow us to make huge progress on our debt and deficit and do to so in a way that does not hurt our economy right here and right now. and it's not often that washington sees both parties agree on the scale and the urgency of the challenge at hand. nobody wants to put the credit worthiness of the united states in jeopardy. nobody wants to see the united states default. so we've got to seize this moment and we have to seize it soon. the vice president and i will continue these negotiations with both leaders of both parties in congress for as long as it takes. and we will reach a deal that will require our government to live within its means and give our businesses confidence and get this economy moving. so with that i will take your
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questions. i've got my list here. starting off with ben feller, associated press. >> thank you very much, mr. president. i'd like to follow up on comments you just made, as you try to reach a deal to raise the debt limit and cut the deficit. you keep saying that there they'ds to be a balanced approach of spending cuts and taxes but republicans say flatlying they won't -- >> they don't want a balanced approach. >> they don't want any tax increases and the house speaker says not only he doesn't support that but that plan will not pass the house. so my question is, will you insist ultimately that a deal has to include those tax increases that you just laid out? is that an absolute red line for you? and if it is, can you explain to us how that can possibly get through the congress? >> look, i think that what we've seen in negotiations here in
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washington is a lot of people say a lot of things to satisfy their base or to get on cable news, but that hopefully leaders of a certain point rise to the occasion and do the right thing for the american people, and that's what i expect to happen this time. call me naive, but my expectation is that leaders are going to lead. now i just want to be clear about what's at stake here. the republicans say they want to reduce the deficit. every single observer who is not an elected official, who is not a politician says we can't reduce our deficit in the scale and scope that we need to without having a balanced approach that looks at everything.
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democrats have to accept some painful spending cuts that hurt some of our constituencies and we may not like it. and we've shown a willingness to do that for the greater good, to say, look, there's some things that are good programs that are nice to have, we can't afford them right now. i, as commander in chief, have to have difficult conversations with the pentagon saying, you know what? there's fat here, we're going to have to trim it out, and bob gates has done a good job of identifying $400 billion in cuts but we're going to do more. and i promise you, the ref preference of the pentagon would be not to cut any movr because they feel like they've already given. we have to look at entitlements and that's always difficult politically, but i've been willing to say, we need to see where we can reduce the cost of health care spending and
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medicaid and medicare in the outyears. not by shifting costs on to seniors, as some have proposed but rather by reducing those cut. even if we're doing it in a smart way it's tough politics but it's the right thing to do. the question is, if everybody else is willing to take on their sacred cows and do tough things in order to achieve the goal of real deficit reduction, then i think it would be hard for the republicans to stand there and say that the tax break for corporate jets is sufficiently important that we're not willing to come to the table and get a deal done, or we're so concerned about protecting oil and gas subsidies for oil companies that are making money hand over fist, that's the reason we're not going to come to a deal. i don't think that's a
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sustainable position. and the truth of the matter is, if you talk to republicans who are not currently in office, like allen simpson who co-chaired my bipartisan commission he done think that's a sustainable position. pete dough minute neech chi, republican, co-chaired something with alice rivlin the democrat, he done think that's a sustainable position. you can't reduce the deficit to the levels that it needs to be reduced without having some revenue in the mix. and the revenue we're talking about isn't coming out of the pockets of middle class families that are struggling. it's coming out of folks who are doing extraordinarily well and are enjoying the lowest tax rates since before i was born. if you're -- if you are a wealthy ceo or a health -- hedge fund manager in america right now your taxes are lower than
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they have ever been. they're lower than they've been since the 1950s. and you can afford it. you'll still be able to ride on your corporate jet, you'll just have to pay a little more. and if we -- i just want to emphasize what i said earlier. if we do not have revenues, that means there are a bunch of kids who are not getting college scholarships. if we do not have those revenues, then the kinds of cuts that would be required might compromise the national weather service. it means that we would not be funding critical medical research. it means that food inspection might be compromised. and you know, i've said to some of the republican leaders, you go talk to your constituents. the republican constituents and
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ask them, are they willing to compromise their kids' safety so that some corporate jet owner continues to get a tax break? and i'm pretty sure the answer would be, so we're going to keep on having these conversations and my belief is, is that the republican leadership in congress will hopefully sooner, rather than later, come to the conclusion that they need to make the right decisions for the country, that everybody else has been willing to move off their maximalist position, they need to do the same. >> [ inaudible ]. >> my expectation is they'll do the responsible thing. chuck todd? >> thank you, mr. president. there have been a lot of questions about the constitutionality, constitutional interpretations
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of a few decisions you've made. i'll ask, do you believe the war powers act is constitutional? do you believe that the debt limit is constitutional? that the idea that congress can do this? and do you believe that marriage is a civil right? >> well that was a hodgepodge. chuck, we're going to assign you to the supreme court, man. i am not a supreme court justice, so i'm not going to put my constitutional law professor hat on here. let me focus on initially the issue of libya. i want to talk about the substance of libya, because there's been all kinds of noise about process and congressional consultation and so forth. let's talk about concretely what's happened. moammar ka dgadhafi who prior t bin laden was responsible for more american deaths than just
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anybody on the planet, was threatening to massacre his people and as part of an international coalition una u.n. mandate that is almost unprecedented, we went in and took out air defense systems so that an international coalition could provide a no-fly zone, could provide humane therrien protection to the people on the ground. i spoke to the american people about what we would do. i said there would be no troops on the ground. i said that we would not be carrying the lion's share of this operation but as members of nato we would be supportive of it because it's in our national security interests and also because it's the right thing to do. we have done exactly what i said
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we would do. we have not put any boots on the ground and our allies who historically we've complained aren't willing to carry enough of the load when it comes to nato operations have carried a big load when it comes to these nato operations and, as a consequence, we've protected thousands of people in libya. we have not seen a single u.s. casualty. there's no risks of additional escalation. this operation is limited in time and in scope. so i said to the american people, here's our narrow mission, we have carried out that narrow mission in exemptlary fashion. throughout this process we consulted with congress. we've had ten hearings. we've sent reams of information about what the operations are. i've had -- i've had all of the members of congress over to talk
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about it. so a lot of this fuss is politics. and if you look substantively at what we've done, we have done exactly what we said to do, under a u.n. mandate, and we have protected thousands of lives in the process, and as a consequence a guy who was a state sponsor of terrorist operations against the united states of america is pinned down and the noose is tightening around him. now when you look at the history of the war powers resolution it came up after the vietnam war in which we had 500,000 soldiers there, tens of thousands of lives lost, hundreds of billions of dollars spent, and congress said, you know what? we don't want something like that happening again. so if you're going to start
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getting us into those kind of commitments, you've got to consult with congress beforehand. and i think that such consultation is entirely appropriate. but do i think that our actions in any way violate the war powers resolution? the answer is no. so i don't even have to get to the constitutional question. there -- there may be a time -- there may be a time in which there was a serious question as to whether or not the war powers resolution act was constitutional. i don't have to get to the question. we have engaged in a limited operation to help a lot of people against one of the worst tyrants in the world, somebody who nobody should want to defend and we should be sending out a unified message to this guy that he should step down and give his people a fair chance to live
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their lives without fear. and this suddenly becomes the cause celeb for some folks in congress? come on. so you had, what, three-parter? what -- what are the other two? >> there was a question about the constitutionality. >> i'm saying i don't have to reach. that's a good legal answer. >> you know, let me start by saying that this administration, under my direction, has consistently said we cannot discriminate as a country against people on the basis of sexual orientation and we have done more in the 2 1/2 years that i've been in here than the previous 43 presidents to uphold that principle,he


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