tv 60 Minutes CBS October 11, 2015 7:00pm-8:01pm PDT
captioning funded by cbs and ford. we go further, so you can. >> kroft: there is a perception in the middle east that the united states is in retreat, that we pulled our troops out of iraq, and isis has moved in and taken over much of that territory. the situation in afghanistan is very precarious and the taliban is on the march again. >> i think it's fair to say, steve, that if... >> kroft: let me just finish the thought. they say you're projecting a weakness, not a strength. >> you're saying "they," but you're not citing too many folks. >> kroft: no, i'll cite... i'll cite if you want me to. i'd say the saudis. i'd say the israelis. i'd say a lot of our friends in the middle east. i'd say everybody in eur... everybody in the republican party. >> ( laughs ) >> kroft: well, you want me to keep going? >> yeah. >> kroft: as you'll see tonight, president obama was happy to keep going, taking questions about politics, putin, trump, hillary's emails and a lot more. >> what else you got?
>> my failure to say something can only be described as cowardice. i was a coward. >> whitaker: that's former prosecutor marty stroud apologizing for sending an innocent man to death row for 30 years. last year, glenn ford was finally exonerated and released by the current district attorney, who still defends the system. have you no compassion for what mr. ford has been through? >> well, you don't know me at all, do you? but you have no problem asking that question. >> whitaker: no, i am asking because i am seeking an answer. >> i'm not in the compassion business. >> kroft: i'm steve kroft. >> stahl: i'm lesley stahl. >> safer: i'm morley safer. >> whitaker: i'm bill whitaker. >> pelley: i'm scott pelley. those stories tonight on "60 minutes."
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>> kroft: it's been a week of rising tensions in syria with russia stepping up air strikes and naval bombardments in support of syrian president bashar al assad, and in some cases, against rebel groups supported by the united states. it's complicated an already precarious situation and aggravated an already contentious relationship between president obama and his russian counterpart, vladimir putin. add to that the presidential primary campaigns underway at home, and it seemed like a good time to talk about all of it with the president... which we did on tuesday in the roosevelt room at the white house, a lively, spirited
discussion that began with isis. the last time we talked was this time last year, and the situation in syria and iraq had begun to worsen vis-a-vis isis. you had just unveiled a plan to provide air support for troops in iraq, and also some air strikes in syria, and the training and equipping of a moderate syrian force. you said that this would degrade and eventually destroy isis. >> barack obama: over time. >> kroft: over time. it's been a year, and... >> obama: i didn't say it was going to be done in a year. >> kroft: no, but you said.... >> obama: there's a question in here somewhere. >> kroft: there's a question in here. i mean, if you look at the situation and you're looking for progress, it's not easy to find. you could make the argument that the only thing that's changed really is-- is the death toll, which has continued to escalate, and the number of refugees fleeing syria into europe. >> obama: syria has been a difficult problem for the entire
world community and, obviously, most importantly, for the people of syria themselves that have been devastated by this civil war, caught between a brutal dictator who drops barrel bombs on his own population, and thinks that him clinging to power is more important than the fate of his country; and a barbaric, ruthless organization in isil and some of the al qaeda affiliates that are operating inside of syria. and what we've been able to do is to stall isil's momentum, to take away some of the key land that they were holding, to push back, particularly in iraq, against some population centers that they threatened. and in syria, we've been able to disrupt a number of their operations. but what we have not been able to do so far-- and i'm the first one to acknowledge this-- is to change the dynamic inside of
syria, and the goal here has been to find a way in which we can help moderate opposition on the ground. but we've never been under any illusion that, militarily we ourselves can solve the problem inside of syria. >> kroft: i want us to take some of these things one by one. you mentioned an awful lot of things. you've managed to achieve a stalemate. what's going to happen to isis? somebody has to take them on. what's going on right now is not working. i mean, they're still occupying big chunks of iraq. they're still occupying a good chunk of syria. who's going to get rid of them? >> obama: over time, the community of nations will all get rid of them, and we will be leading getting rid of them.
but we are not going to be able to get rid of them unless there is an environment inside of syria and in portions of iraq in which local populations, local sunni populations are working in a concerted way with us to get rid of them. >> kroft: you have been talking about the moderate opposition in syria. it seems very hard to identify. and you talked about the frustrations of... of trying to find some and train them. you got a half a billion dollars from congress to train and equip 5,000, and at the end, according to the commander of centcom, you got 50 people, most of whom are... are dead or deserted. he said four or five left. >> obama: steve, this is why i've been skeptical from the get-go about the notion that we were going to effectively create this proxy army inside of syria.
my goal has been to try to test the proposition, can we be able to train and equip a moderate opposition that's willing to fight isil? and what we've learned is that, as long as assad remains in power, it is very difficult to get those folks to focus their attention on isil. >> kroft: if you were skeptical of the program to find and identify, train and equip moderate syrians, why did you go through the program? >> obama: well, because part of what we have to do here, steve, is to try different things. because we also have partners on the ground that are invested and interested in seeing some sort of resolution to this problem and... >> kroft: and they wanted you to do it. >> obama: well, no, that's not what i said. i think it is important for us to make sure that we explore all the various options that are available. >> kroft: i know you don't want to talk about this. >> obama: no, i... i'm happy to talk about it. >> kroft: i want to talk about this program, because it would seem to show... i mean, if you
expect 5,000 and you get five, it shows that somebody someplace along the line made some sort of a serious miscalculation. >> obama: you know, the... steve, let me just say this. >> kroft: it's an embarrassment. >> obama: look, there's no doubt that it did not work. and one of the... one of the challenges that i've had throughout this heartbreaking situation inside of syria is... is that you'll have people insist that, you know, all you have to do is send in a few, you know, truckloads full of arms and people are ready to fight. then, when you start a train- and-equip program and it doesn't work, then people say, "well, why didn't it work?" or, "if it had just started three months earlier, it would've worked." >> kroft: but you said yourself you never believed in this. >> obama: well... but steve, what i have also said is that, surprisingly enough, it turns out that in a situation that is as volatile and with as many players as there are inside of syria, there aren't any silver
bullets. and this is precisely why i've been very clear that america's priorities has to be number one, keeping the american people safe. number two, we are prepared to work both diplomatically and where we can to support moderate opposition that can help convince the russians and iranians to put pressure on assad for a transition. but that what we are not going to do is to try to reinsert ourselves in a military campaign inside of syria. let's take the situation in afghanistan, which i suspect you'll ask... ask about. but i... i wanted to use this as an example. >> kroft: all right. i feel like i'm being filibustered, mr. president. >> obama: no, no, no, no, no. steve, i... i think if you want to roll back the tape, you've been giving me long questions and statements, and now i'm responding to them. so let's... if you ask me big, open-ended questions, expect big, open-ended answers. let's take the example of... of afghanistan.
we've been there for 13 years now, close to 13 years. and it's still hard in afghanistan. today, after all the investments we have there, and we still have thousands of troops there. so the notion that after a year in syria, a country where the existing government hasn't invited us in, but is actively keeping us out, that somehow we would be able to solve this quickly is... >> kroft: we didn't say quickly. >> obama: ... is an illusion and... >> kroft: nobody's expecting that, mr. president. >> obama: well, the... no, i understand, but what i'm... the simple point i'm making, steve, is that the solution that we're going to have inside of syria is ultimately going to depend not on the united states putting in a bunch of troops there. resolving the underlying crisis is going to be something that requires, ultimately, the key players there to recognize that
there has to be a transition to new government. and in the absence of that, it's not going to work. >> kroft: one of the key players now is russia. >> obama: yeah. >> kroft: a year ago when we did this interview, there was some saber-rattling between the united states and russia on the ukrainian border. now, it's also going on in syria. you said a year ago that the united states... "america leads. we're the indispensable nation." mr. putin seems to be challenging that leadership. >> obama: in what way? let... let's think about this... >> kroft: well, he's moved... he's moved troops into syria, for one. he's got people on the ground. two, the russians are conducting military operations in... in the middle east for the first time since world war ii... >> obama: so that's... so that's.. >> kroft: ...bombing the people that we are supporting. >> obama: so that's leading, steve? let me ask you this question. when i came into office, ukraine was governed by a corrupt ruler who was a stooge of mr. putin.
syria was russia's only ally in the region. and today, rather than being able to count on their support and maintain the base they had in syria, which they've had for a long time, mr. putin now is devoting his own troops, his own military, just to barely hold together by a thread his sole ally. and in ukraine... >> kroft: he's challenging your leadership, mr. president. he's challenging your leadership. >> obama: well, steve, i've got to tell you, if... if you think that running your economy into the ground and having to send troops in, in order to prop up your only ally is leadership, then we've got a different definition of leadership. my definition of leadership would be leading on climate change, an international accord that potentially we'll get in paris. my definition of leadership is mobilizing the entire world community to make sure that iran doesn't get a nuclear weapon. and with respect to the middle east, we've got a 60-country
coalition that isn't suddenly lining up around russia's strategy. to the contrary, they are arguing that, in fact, that strategy will not work. >> kroft: my point is... was not that he was leading; my point is that he was challenging your leadership. and he has very much involved himself in the situation. can you imagine anything happening in syria of any significance at all without the russians now being involved in it and having a part of it? >> obama: but that was true before. keep in mind that, for the last five years, the russians have provided arms, provided financing, as have the iranians, as has hezbollah. >> kroft: but they haven't been bombing and they haven't had troops on the ground. >> obama: and the fact that they had to do this is not an indication of strength, it's an indication that their strategy did not work. >> kroft: you don't think... >> obama: you don't... you don't think that mr. putin would've preferred having mr. assad be able to solve this problem without him having to send a bunch of pilots and money that they don't have? >> kroft: did you know he was going to do all this when you met with him in new york? >> obama: well, we had seen...
we had pretty good intelligence. we watch... >> kroft: so you knew he was already planning to do it. >> obama: we knew that he was planning to provide the military assistance that assad was needing because they were nervous about a potential imminent collapse of the regime. >> kroft: you say he's doing this out of weakness. there is a perception in the middle east among our adversaries, certainly, and even among some of our allies that the united states is in retreat, that we pulled our troops out of iraq, and isis has moved in and taken over much of that territory. the situation in afghanistan is very precarious and the taliban is on the march again. and isis controls a large part of syria. >> obama: i think it... i think it's fair to say, steve, that if... >> kroft: they... let me just finish the thought. they say your... they say you're projecting weakness, not a strength. >> obama: you're... you're saying "they," but you're not... you're not citing too many folks. but... but here... >> kroft: no, i'll cite... i'll cite if you want me to. >> obama: here... yes. >> kroft: i'd say the saudis. i'd say the israelis.
i'd say a lot of our friends in the middle east. i'd say everybody in eur... everybody in the republican party. well, you want me to keep going? ( laughs ) >> obama: yeah. if you are... if you're citing the republican party, i think it's fair to say that there is nothing i've done right over the last seven and a half years. and i think that's right. it... and i also think what is true is that these are the same folks who were making an argument for us to go into iraq and who, in some cases, still have difficulty acknowledging that it was a mistake. and steve, i guarantee you that there are factions inside of the middle east, and i guess factions inside the republican party, who think that we should send endless numbers of troops into the middle east, that the only measure of strength is us sending back several hundred thousand troops, that we are
going to impose a peace, police the region, and that the fact that we might have more deaths of u.s. troops-- thousands of troops killed, thousands of troops injured, spend another trillion dollars-- they would have no problem with that. there are people who would like to see us do that. and unless we do that, they'll suggest we're in retreat. >> kroft: they'll say you're throwing in the towel. >> obama: no. steve, we have an enormous presence in the middle east. we have bases and we have aircraft carriers, and our pilots are flying through those skies. and we are currently supporting iraq as it tries to continue to build up its forces. but the problem that i think a lot of these critics never answer is, what's in the interest of the united states of america, and... and at what point do we say that, "here are the things we can do well to protect america.
but here are the things that we also have to do in order to make sure that america leads and america is strong and stays number one." and if in fact the only measure is for us to send another 100,000 or 200,000 troops into syria or back into iraq, or perhaps into libya, or perhaps into yemen, and our goal somehow is that we are now going to be not just the police, but the governors of this region. that would be a bad strategy, steve. and i think that if we make that mistake again, then shame on us. >> kroft: do you think the world's a safer place? >> obama: america is a safer place. i think that there are places, obviously, like syria that are not safer than when i came into office. but in terms of us protecting ourselves against terrorism, in
terms of us making sure that we are strengthening our alliances, in terms of our reputation around the world, absolutely we're stronger. >> kroft: on friday, the pentagon ended the program to train and equip syrian rebels that the president told us did not work. in a moment, he talks about donald trump, hillary clinton's emails, and joe biden's possible run for president. >> cbs money watch update sponsored by: >> glor: good evening. the government is expected to announce thursday there will be no cost of living increase in social security benefits next year. twitter is not commenting on reports of company-wide layoffs this week. and the 200-year-old steinbach nutcracker company in germany has filed for bankruptcy because of labor costs. i'm jeff glor, cbs news.
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>> kroft: after a short break for a few sips of water, our interview with president obama resumed, turning to politics, hillary clinton's emails, and the president's thoughts about his last 15 months in office. >> obama: what else you got? >> kroft: okay. mr. president, there are a lot of serious problems with the world right now, but i want to ask you a few questions about politics. >> obama: yeah, go ahead. >> kroft: what do you think of donald trump? >> obama: well, i think that he is a great publicity-seeker, and at a time when the republican party hasn't really figured out what it's for as opposed to what it's against, i think that he is... he has tapped into something that exists in the republican party that's real.
i think there is genuine anti- immigrant sentiment in a large portion of at least republican primary voters. i don't think it's uniform. he knows how to get attention. he is, you know, the classic reality tv character and, at this early stage, it's not surprising that he's gotten a lot of attention. >> kroft: you think he's running out of steam. i mean, you think he's going to disappear? >> obama: you know, i'll leave it up to the pundits to make that determination. i don't think he'll end up being president of the united states. >> kroft: did you know about hillary clinton's use of private... private email server... while she was secretary of state? >> obama: no. no. >> kroft: do you think it posed a national security problem? >> obama: i don't think it posed a national security problem. i think that it... it was a mistake that she has acknowledged. and, you know, as a general proposition, when we're in these offices, we have to be more sensitive and stay as far away from the line as possible when it comes to how we handle information, how we handle our own personal data.
and, you know, she made a mistake. she has acknowledged it. i do think that the way it's been ginned-up is, in part, because of politics. and i think she'd be the first to acknowledge that maybe she could have handled the original decision better and the disclosures more quickly, but... >> kroft: what was your reaction when you found out about it? >> obama: this is one of those issues that i think is legitimate, but the fact that, for the last three months, this is all that's been spoken about is an indication that we're in presidential political season. >> kroft: do you agree with what president clinton has said and... and secretary clinton has said, that this is not that big a deal. do you agree with that? >> obama: well, i'm not going to comment on... >> kroft: you think it's not that big a deal... >> obama: what i think is that it is important for her to answer these questions to the satisfaction of the american public. and they can make their own judgment.
i can tell you that this is not a situation in which america's national security was endangered. >> kroft: this administration has prosecuted people for having classified material on their private computers. >> obama: well, i... there's no doubt that there had been breaches, and these are all a matter of degree. we don't get an impression that here there was purposely efforts in... to hide something or to squirrel away information. but again, i'm going to leave it to... >> kroft: okay, if she had come to you...? >> obama: i'm going to leave it to hillary when she has an interview with you to address all these questions. >> kroft: right now, there's nobody on either side of the aisle that is exactly running on your record. do you want joe biden to get in the race and do it? >> obama: you know, i am going to let joe make that decision. and i... i mean what i say. i think joe will go down as one of the finest vice presidents in history, and one of the more consequential. i think he has done great work.
i don't think there's any politician at a national level that has not thought about being the president. and if you're sitting right next to the president in every meeting and, you know, wrestling with these issues, i'm sure that, for him, he's saying to himself, "i could do a really good job." >> kroft: i do want to talk a little bit about congress. are you going to miss john boehner? >> obama: john boehner and i disagreed on just about everything. but the one thing i'll say about john boehner is he did care about the institution. he recognized that nobody gets 100% in our democracy. i won't say that... that he and i were ideal partners, but he and i could talk and we could get some things done. and so, i am a little concerned that the reason he left was because there are a group of members of congress who think having somebody who is willing to shut down the government or
default on the u.s. debt is going to allow them to get their way 100% of the time. >> kroft: do you think you're going to be get anything through congress? >> obama: well, given that this congress hasn't been able to get much done at all over the last year and a half, two years-- for that matter, for the last four-- it would be surprising if we were able to make huge strides on the things that are important. but i have a more modest goal, which is to make sure that congress doesn't do damage to the economy. >> kroft: the president says that means avoiding another budget crisis and another round of threats to shut down the government, which could happen as early as december. even with congressional republicans in disarray, he's hoping to reach a deal with congress, as he did two years ago, to lift some spending caps in defense and other areas while continuing to reduce the deficit. >> obama: right now, our economy is much stronger relative to the rest of the world.
china, europe, emerging markets, they're all having problems. and so, if we provide another shock to the system by shutting down the government, that could mean that the progress we have made starts going backwards instead of forwards. we have to make sure that we pass a transportation bill. it may not be everything that i want. we should be being much more aggressive in rebuilding america right now. interest rates are low, construction workers need the work, and our economy would benefit from it. but if we can't do a big multi- year plan, we have to at least do something that is robust enough so that we are meeting the demands of a growing economy. >> kroft: a few months back, at a fundraiser, you made a point of saying that the first lady was very pleased that you can't run again. >> obama: yeah, she is. >> kroft: do you feel the same way? >> obama: you know, it's interesting. i... you go into your last year,
and i think it's bittersweet. on the one hand, i am very proud of what we've accomplished and it makes me think, i'd love to do some more. but by the time i'm finished, i think it will be time for me to go. because there's a reason why we consider george washington one of our greatest presidents. he set a precedent, saying that, when you occupy this seat, it is an extraordinary privilege. but the way our democracy is designed, no one person is indispensable, and ultimately, you are a citizen. and once you finish with your service, you go back to being a citizen. and i... i think having a fresh set of legs in this seat, i think having a fresh perspective, new personnel and new ideas and a new conversation with the american people about issues that may be different a
year from now than they were when i started eight years ago, i think that's all good for our democracy. i think it's healthy. >> kroft: do you think if you ran again, could run again, and did run again, you would be elected? >> obama: yes. >> kroft: you do? >> obama: i do. >> more from president obama. plus the art behind "60 minutes" stories, and the man behind the art. at 60minutesovertime.com. sponsored by prevnar 13. what if one piece of kale could protect you from diabetes? what if one sit-up could prevent heart disease? one. wishful thinking, right? but there is one step you can take to help prevent another serious disease. pneumococcal pneumonia. if you are 50 or older, one dose of the prevnar 13® vaccine can help protect you from pneumococcal pneumonia, an illness that can cause coughing, chest pain, difficulty breathing, and may even put you in the hospital. even if you have already been vaccinated with another pneumonia vaccine, prevnar 13® may help provide additional protection.
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new evidence revealed he did not commit the murder. he was one of 149 inmates freed from death row since the u.s. supreme court reinstated capital punishment in 1976. in all those exonerations, you have likely never heard a prosecutor admit his role and apologize for his mistakes in sending an innocent man to death row. but tonight, a prosecutor's confession. marty stroud speaks of an injustice he calls so great, it destroyed two lives-- glenn ford's and his own. >> marty stroud: i ended up, without anybody else's help, putting a man on death row who didn't belong there. i mean, at the end of the day-- the beginning, end, middle, whatever you want to call it-- i did something that was very, very bad. >> whitaker: it was 1983, shreveport, louisiana, and 32-
year-old prosecutor marty stroud was assigned his first death penalty case. a local jeweler, isadore rozeman, had been robbed and murdered. quickly, stroud zeroed in on glenn ford. ford had done yard work for rozeman and was known to be a petty thief, and he admitted he had pawned some of the stolen jewelry. all that was enough to make him the primary suspect. stroud knew a conviction would boost his career. >> stroud: i was arrogant, narcissistic, caught up in the culture of winning. >> whitaker: win regardless of the facts, the truth? >> stroud: looking back on it, yes. there was a question about other people's involvement. i should have followed up on that. i didn't do that. >> whitaker: why didn't you? >> stroud: i think my failure to say something can only be described as cowardice. i was a coward. >> whitaker: stroud now admits the cards and the system were
stacked against ford from the beginning-- his court-appointed lawyers had never practiced criminal law. what kind of law did they practice? >> stroud: one individual had general civil practice, and another one did succession-- wills and estates. >> whitaker: in a murder trial? >> stroud: here they are in a murder trial in louisiana where a man was on trial for his life. and at the time, i saw nothing wrong with that. in fact, i snickered from time to time, saying that this was going to be... we're going to get though this case pretty quickly. >> whitaker: stroud's case wasn't strong. there was no physical evidence linking ford to the crime. the main witness incriminating ford admitted in court she'd been coerced by police to make up her testimony. but what was more important to marty stroud was the composition of the jury. >> stroud: there were no african americans on the jury. >> whitaker: was that by design? >> stroud: at the time of the case, we excluded african-
americans because we... i felt that they would not consider a death penalty where you had a black defendant and a white victim. i was the person that made the final call on the case with respect to jurors. and i was... i was wrong. >> whitaker: caddo parish, louisiana, is predominately white. yet 77% of those given the death penalty here in the last 40 years have been black. >> stroud: so, when glenn ford walks into that courtroom, he's got a count of 0 and 2 against him, and a fast ball's coming right at his head for strike three. >> whitaker: it took the jury less than three hours to find glenn ford guilty. afterwards, stroud and his legal team went out and celebrated sending ford to death row. >> stroud: i had drinks. i slapped people on the back. we sang songs. that was utterly disgusting.
you know, it... you see mother justice sometimes and... a statue, and she has a blindfold over her eyes. she was crying that night because that wasn't justice. that wasn't justice at all. >> whitaker: ford was put in solitary confinement in one of the most infamous lockups in america, angola. the maximum security prison has a well-earned reputation for harsh penalties and harsher conditions. summer temperatures on death row commonly exceed 104 degrees. >> stroud: death row, you have maybe a five- by seven-foot cell. you're in there every day. you get out one hour a day to walk around and you come back in. you do that day after day, year after year, and that's it. he was basically thrown in to a cell and forgotten. >> whitaker: ford would become
one of the country's longest serving death row inmates. stroud went on to a successful legal career. but all that changed when one of the initial suspects, a man named jake robinson, told a police informant he had killed the jeweler three decades earlier. robinson is now in prison for another murder. a court review of the new information found there was "credible evidence... glenn ford was neither present at, nor a participant in, the robbery and murder of isadore rozeman." stroud's reaction when he was told ford was innocent? >> stroud: i thought i was going to throw up, nauseous as it. and i felt my face was just turning, like a fever. but then the horror of knowing that yours truly had caused him all this pain... >> whitaker: last year, ford was exonerated and released from angola. pictures of his first free moments captured a rainbow in
the sky and a smile on his face. what was it like to step outside the walls of that prison? >> glenn ford: like stepping in a brand new world, like breathing fresh air for the first time. it felt good. >> whitaker: but that good feeling didn't last. shortly after being released, ford learned he had stage-four lung cancer. doctors told him he had only a few months to live. when we met glenn ford, he was living in new orleans in a home for released prisoners. >> ford: and that hurts. >> whitaker: just to swallow water? >> ford: feel like a flame! >> whitaker: you were on death row for 30 years. >> ford: yes. >> whitaker: did you ever come close to an execution date? >> ford: came within a week because the judge said he was retiring, and he wanted to put a death date on me. >> whitaker: did mr. ford get justice in this case? >> dale cox: i think he has gotten delayed justice. >> whitaker: dale cox, the acting district attorney of caddo parish, got glenn ford
released after receiving the informant's information. as he sees it, the justice system worked and no one, including marty stroud, did anything wrong. >> cox: i don't know what it is he's apologizing for. i think he's wrong in that the system did not fail mr. ford. >> whitaker: it did not? >> cox: it did not. in fact... >> whitaker: how can you say that? >> cox: because he's not on death row. and that's how i can say it. >> whitaker: getting out of prison after 30 years is justice? >> cox: well, it's better than dying there and it's better than being executed. >> whitaker: there may be no more controversial prosecutor in the u.s. than dale cox. between 2010 and 2014, his caddo parish office put more people on death row per capita than anywhere else in the country. >> cox: i think society should be employing the death penalty more rather than less. >> whitaker: but there have been ten other inmates on death row
in louisiana who have been exonerated. clearly, the system is not flawless. are you sure that you've gotten it right all the time? >> cox: i'm reasonably confident that... that i've gotten it right. >> whitaker: reasonably confident? >> cox: am i arrogant enough, am i narcissistic enough to say i couldn't make a mistake? of course not. >> whitaker: but until this information came out, the state was convinced that mr. ford was guilty. >> cox: yes. >> whitaker: he could have been killed. >> cox: yes. >> whitaker: and it would've been a mistake. >> cox: yes. >> whitaker: it sounds like you're saying that's just a risk we have to take. >> cox: yes. if i had gotten this information too late, all of us would've been grieved beyond description. we don't want to do this to people who are not guilty of the crime they're charged with. >> whitaker: according to louisiana law, glenn ford was
entitled to $330,000, about $11,000 for every year of wrongful imprisonment. but the state is denying him the money. why? in the original trial, prosecutors said ford knew a robbery of rozeman's jewelry shop was going to take place. but he didn't report it. ford was never charged with that crime, but the state says that's reason enough to deny him. do you believe he should be compensated for the time he spent in prison? >> cox: no, i think we need to follow the law. and the statute does not require that you be charged or convicted or arrested for any of these other crimes. the statute only requires that mr. ford prove he didn't do these other crimes. >> whitaker: so he's guilty until proven innocent, in this case? >> cox: no, because it's not a question of guilt or innocence. it's a question of whether he's entitled to money, taxpayer money. >> whitaker: but you say he has to prove that he's innocent of
these other charges, these other crimes for which he's never been charged, for which he's never been tried. >> cox: that's correct. >> whitaker: he has to prove that he's innocent of them in order to get the compensation? >> cox: that's correct. >> whitaker: i'm trying to understand. he was punished for something that he might have done. that doesn't seem fair. >> cox: you want fairness... >> whitaker: isn't the law supposed to provide fairness? >> cox: it is supposed to provide justice. >> whitaker: you don't think he deserves compensation. >> cox: i think that the law must be followed. >> ford: what law is this? i never heard of such law where it says it's okay to do what they did to me without any type of compensation. >> whitaker: there was some compensation. glenn ford was given a $20 gift card the day he left angola prison. >> ford: gave me a card for $20 and said, "wish you luck." >> whitaker: how long did that last you?
>> ford: one meal. i had some fried chicken, tea, and the french fries came with it. i had $4 and change left. >> whitaker: after 30 years in prison? >> ford: right. >> whitaker: 30 years on death row in... in solitary confinement, and the state of louisiana releases mr. ford with a $20 gift card. >> cox: you're trying to portray the state of louisiana as some kind of monster. i got him out of jail as quickly as i could. that's what the obligation of the state is. >> whitaker: and that's the end of the state's obligation? >> cox: as far as i'm concerned. >> whitaker: what about compassion? have you no compassion for what mr. ford has been through? >> cox: well, you don't know me at all, do you? but you have no problem asking that question. >> whitaker: no, i'm... i'm asking because i'm seeking an answer. >> cox: i'm not in the
compassion biness, none of us as prosecutors or defense lawyers are in the compassion business. i... i think the ministry is in the compassion business. we're in the legal business. so to suggest that somehow what has happened to glenn ford is abhorrent, yes, it's unfair. but it's not illegal. and it's not even immoral. it just doesn't fit your perception of fairness. >> whitaker: i would say, in this case, many, many, many people would see this as unfair. >> cox: i agree. i can't disagree with that. >> whitaker: for his part, marty stroud says glenn ford deserves every penny owed him. he went to see ford to apologize. how do you apologize to someone for taking 30 years of his life from him? >> stroud: well, there's no books you can read to do that.
i just went in and apologized. >> whitaker: do you forgive him? >> ford: no. he didn't only take from me, he took from my whole family. >> whitaker: it sounds like you don't think you could ever forgive him. >> ford: well, i don't. but i'm still trying to. >> whitaker: do you think you deserve his forgiveness? >> stroud: no. if somebody had done that to me, i don't know if i could forgive them. >> whitaker: you say you destroyed his life. sounds like this incident destroyed your life, too. >> stroud: i've got a hole in me through which the north wind blows. it's... it's a sense of coldness, it's a sense of just disgust. there's just nothing out there that can fill in that hole that says i... it's all right. well, it's not all right. it's not all right. >> ♪ keep your eyes on the prize hold on ♪ hold on...
>> whitaker: three weeks after we met him, glenn ford died, penniless. his final months, he lived off charity. donations covered the cost of his funeral. >> cox: there was a tragic outcome. and these tragic outcomes happen all the time in life. it's not like the glenn ford case is the only tragedy you'll ever see or i'll ever see in our lifetime. the question is, was there anything illegally done, improperly done that led to this. and... and i can comfortably say, based on the review of the record, no, there was not. >> whitaker: in glenn ford's will, he directs that any state money he might receive go to his ten grandchildren so they can have a better chance than he did. and marty stroud? he has asked the louisiana bar association to discipline him for his role in the ford case.
>> stroud: it was a train to injustice and i was the engineer. glenn ford will be a part of me until the day i die. >> the cbs sports update is brought to you by ford. i'm james brown with scores from the nfl. today josh mccallister scored a team record 475 yards as the browns win in o.t. the bengals also win in o.t. and move to 5-0 for the first time since '88. the falcon remain atop the n.f.c. south. the eagles' beat the saints while the patriots and whereon coast remain unbeaten and atop their division. for more sports news and information, go to cbssports.com.
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previously on madam secretary... elizabeth, you know craig sterling. madam secretary. elizabeth: nakedly ambitious, self-serving, obstructionist. all suit and no substance. i can't believe conrad would make that appointment without consulting with me. the president of the united states can do whatever the hell he wants. i'll be your main contact at dia. we have an eye on one of your students. he's training to serve under general doroshevich, one of the highest-ranking members of the russian military and a close advisor to president ostrov. henry: dmitri petrov. jane: i want you to bring him in. you mean recruit him. and be his handler. what? no. wait. no. henry, we need this. russian continues to be our next real nuclear threat. all right, after we're done with the junction boxes, we can go ahead and start installing the conduit supports tomorrow, okay?