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can have strong disagreements, but ultimately everything should always be debated and discussed. >> now, hours later, lafferty said this about her encounter with the senator on "the last word." >> again, i got the run around. no clear answer. i don't know if she thought we were just going to kind of disappear after she decided to vote against something so common sense. >> nbc news political producer casey hunt was in that room in new hampshire yesterday. she joins us now. let's talk about this. did you get a sense that senator ayotte may have been prepared, knew something like that was coming with erica in the room? >> she knew that something was coming. there were folks prepared with signs from both sides, hand-written signs supporting her. her staff knew this was going to be the focus. she kicked off with a powerpoint that was focused on expanded background checks. they didn't know that erica lafferty herself was going to be there. they were less prepared for that particular really emotional
moment in the room. there was another heckler that shouted at the senator, who the room then shouted down. of course, when the daughter of that newtown victim stood up and started talking with the senator, there was silence. >> you know, certainly right now, as the senator pointed out there, there is compassion for what erica lafferty, other families of newtown have gone through, other gun violence families, what they've suffered through. right now the nra is airing new ads in support of kelly ayotte. she isn't the only senator, we want to point out, who's seen a noticeable drop in their approval ratings. we have arizona senator jeff fla flake, who came out saying he was less popular than pond scum now. from what you saw, could this be a turning point in reinvigorating the gun control conversation? >> it certainly could be. and this is a real test of the organizing powers of these new groups that have sprung up and really started to exercise this kind of grass tops power in the
wake of the newtown tragedy. for senator ayotte in new hampshire, you know, there are a lot of locals there who are typically very invested in their candidates. it's a place that really depends on knowing its politicians. on the other hand, ayotte is really clearly feeling the heat from this and is stressed out and concerned about it and is making those concerns known to other folks on capitol hill. >> and she was quick to point out that she did vote for debate, obviously, trying to deflect some of the ire on site right there. as you know, as you've covered the republican side of things for a long time, is there really the appetite to pick this back up, especially if the onus in the senate is going to be on harry reid? >> that's what senator ayotte is primarily concerned about. is this going to come back up? is this a battle she's going to have to fight again? it was clear from the town hall yesterday it wasn't one she was keen on sort of reinvigorating. the arguments she was offering weren't, you know, this is
defensive second amendment or concerns about gun registries. she wasn't echoing some of the talking points that organizations like the national rifle association have been pushing. instead, she was focused on saying, look, we should take some steps to fix gun trafficking or to address mental health issues. so i got the sense there might be some appetite for doing things like that. as far as expanding background checks are concerned, the appetite is really just not there. >> nbc news political producer, casey hunt. great to have you on. it's really important, especially. since you were in that room. a news making moment. great to see you this morning. thank you. >> thank you. we're going to have to come together and take meaningful action -- >> in my way we can -- >> regardless of the politics. >> to the parents who have lost their beloved children -- >> my administration would do everything possible to -- >> prevent anything like this from happening again. >> may god bless the memory of the victims.
>> and that is an ad from the group moms demand action called déjà vu. it's an ad that ends with a plea for viewers to call their members of congress. joining is me right now is the los angeles mayor, a member of mayors against illegal guns. sir, good to see you this morning. there's also -- and i want to play this for everybody. there's a new ad that begins airing today from the progressive change campaign committee that's targeting democrat max baucus. take a look. >> i'm a grandmother, a hunter, and a gun owner. i've been the victim of a home invasion. i hid my girls in a closet, called for help, aimed my handgun at door and waited. guns can protect us, but we're less safe with guns in the wrong hands. >> sir, are we witnessing potentially a new turning point in invigorating the conversation? if so, how can gun control, gun reform advocates really approach this take two style differently? >> well, i think we do need to
put pressure on the senate, including senate democrats that didn't vote for universal background checks. i think that mayors and people in communities all across the country need to drum up support on the ground to put pressure on these people. you've said it 100 times. 90% of americans support background checks. the vast majority of nra members support background checks. the nra used to support background checks for the longest time. 24 is something that we all ought to be able to agree on and that we ought to be able to pass. we ought to hold these people accountable for not doing what they should do. >> sir, talking about getting something to pass, let's switch gears and get you on the record about immigration reform. politico is reporting that senator patrick leahy is going to offer an amendment allowing immigrants with same-sex partners to get green cards. that's something that senator marco rubio feels will tank this bill. take a listen.
>> this immigration bill is difficult enough as it is. there are already enough questions being asked, questions that need to be answered, legitimate points that are being raised. you inject something like this in the bill, it will die. the coalition behind it will fall apart, and it will make it -- it will not pass. it's just that simple. this bill will fail. it will not pass. it will not have the support. it will not have my support. so i hope we can avoid this. >> he's saying hoping to avoid it, but is there pressure on democrats to get this in? do you think ultimately that kind of provision is going to kill the bill, it'll go down in flames because of it? >> you know, look, i think the senate and senate democrats and republicans have to vote their conscience. they have to do the right thing. it's not just about pressure. that amendment is something i could and would support. i'm assuming that democrats will support it as well. republicans are going to do what they're going to do. i do think it's important in the end that we get a bill,
absolutely. and that means we can't let the perfect get in the way of the good. but i do expect the democrats will vote for that amendment in the committee. it remains to be seen what happens on the floor. certainly, in the house we know that the consensus bill with or without that provision is going to have a very, very difficult time. >> correct. >> which is why speaker boehner shouldn't and can't employ the rule because it will never get out with that. you have house republicans talking about self-deportation again. i mean, god p you know, no country has ever self-deported 11 million people. it's a ridiculous notion. but this bill is going to have a difficult road. in the end, i expect it will pass. >> and that's mitt romney's line, self-deportation, that everybody tried to scoot away from as quickly as possible. mitt romney became crypt nite
after the november election. >> though, they had it in their platform, if you remember. >> we have roll call reporting today that the house immigration group is considering that p proposal involving self-deportati self-deportation. given the visceral reaction to the idea the first time around, why would they even bring this up? knowing what the appetite in the country is, why even go down this road? isn't that a serious nonstarter? >> well, it is a serious nonstarter, but remember that many of these districts that were redrawn are heavily republican. they don't care whether or not it will have an impact on the party nationally. they only care about their own districts. in some of those districts, people support something like this. but again, 70% of america supports a pathway to citizenship. this bill has that. the senate bill, anyway. and the house version that
ultimately passes will have to have that as well. >> mayor, thanks for your time this morning. appreciate it. good to see you. >> thomas, good to see you. so a big about face from former vice presidential candidate paul ryan on a major issue that impacts the lgbt community. plus, the plan b morning after pill will soon be available for your teen to buy over the counter without your approval. those are just two topics firing up our first agenda panel of progressives. they join me next. you can weigh in on our big question of the day. should teens be allowed to buy the morning after pill over the counter? tweet me @thomasaroberts. find me on facebook. time for the your business entrepreneur of the week. ryan was inspired by his father's paint-stained paper scraps, collecting them to use as wrapping paper. now with a collection of his own designs, he founded wrapped and sells his products across the
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syria and erasing the red line. plan b and plan b for teen girls in this country. then we've got paul ryan coming out for gay couples being able to adopt. all of this catching the attention of our panel of progressives today. joining me now is sarah cliff, health care reporter for "the washington post." also, a congressional reporter for talking points memo. and a reporter for wire.com's danger room, which covers national security issues. gang, great to have you here. sarah, i want to start with you. i know you've been covering the plan b issue for a while, and you have a piece up talking about this. let's explain to everybody, this isn't going to a product that's going to be available in retail outlets. let's explain here the fact the age number that's being put out there, sarah, and why everybody is throwing up red flags about the age of 15-year-old girls having access to this. >> right. so the fda decided late
yesterday that any woman over 15 should have over-the-counter access to emergency contraceptives, the pill that's called plan b. that's been a really controversial point. most tend to accept access to emergency contraceptives for older women, but when you get down to 15-year-olds or even 12-year-olds accessing the product, that's when it becomes a really more controversial and political issue. >> and is there a big issue with defining a 15-year-old as a woman as opposed to being a 15-year-old girl when talking about reproductive rights? >> you know, that isn't an issue that's come up as much. i think the concern that usually gets raised it what role should a parent or a doctor have in this kind of decision if a 15-year-old is sexually active and is seeking emergency contraceptives. is that a decision a parent or a doctor should be involved, or is that something that a 15-year-old is able to do on her own? >> and gang, i think a lot of people are going to be wondering, how are they going to verify age on this?
sarah, according to your story, the fda will require the product to come with a label that will say not for sale for those under 15 years of age. have they talked more about how they're going to police the sale of the product? >> right. i've talked to the fda a little about this. it will be similar to regulations around cigarettes or alcohol, where the cashier has to verify the age of the person buying it. one challenge here is that 15-year-olds usually don't have driver's licenses, which you would use in those situations. so some of the forms of i.d. that would be acceptable would be a learner's permit, a passport or a birth certificate. but those can be difficult for 15-year-olds to obtain. so it's unclear how exactly this will work out practically, you know, when this regulation is implemented. >> we were all talking about in the team meeting today as i brought up, boys don't get carded to buy condoms, so isn't there a big catch 22 here in
thinking this would be something that would be used in a preventive contraceptive manner, that young girls are being held to a different standard than their male counterparts would be? >> i think the best scientific data we have on this shows that the plan b morning after pill is perfectly safe for women and girls of all ages. the administration took a lot of criticism from reproductive rights advocates and women's rights advocates when they overruled the fda's lifting the age restrictions for essentially making a political decision. now the election is over. a federal judge has struck down that age limit. essentially, very clearly called it a political move, criticizing it as a political move. so the fda decided that they were going to move the age to 15. just in the last hour or so, i don't know if this has been reported, but in the last hour, i spoke to an official who said the secretary has been briefed on the decision and she supportsupport s it. >> so that's a big turn around because she's been against it.
>> she's been against the over-the-counter sale of plan b to women and girls under 17, i believe. so this is a turn around in a sense she now supports it for 15 and up. >> that is a big turn around. let's talk more about turn arounds. we have paul ryan now coming out of the close et for gay couples being allowed to adopt. basically erasing what he did in 1999 by voting against that. he has said -- he said these remarks in a town hall meeting back in wisconsin. take a listen. >> i would vote differently these days. that was a vote, i think, took in my first term in 1999 or 2000. i do believe that if there are children who are orphans who do not have a loving person or couple, you know, i think if a person wants to love and raise a child, they ought to be able to do that. >> so orphans can have parents, but they can't be married if they're gay. but they can be gay to adopt
this this is kind of putting the cart before the horse, especially when it comes to family planning, isn't it? >> there does seem to be a bit of a moral inconsistency to saying that gay couples can raise children but they don't deserve equal marriage rights. the other issue here to consider is as a conservative, don't you want a child to be raised by married parents? ultimately, i think this is paul ryan's effort to not get too far behind on an issue where the public is racing ahead. you see the polls are moving overwhelmingly and very quickly in one direction toward support of gay rights in all different forms and support for gay adoption has tended to be a steppingstone towards stronger support for gay rights and other forms. recall also that president obama supported the right of gay couples to adopt well before he supported same-sex marriage. i think this is paul ryan signaling to supporters of gay rights and to republican donors, many of which are rich republican donors, many of who are supportive of gay rights as well, that he's not going to let
this issue hobble his presidential ambitions. >> he did go on to talk about the issue of marriage equality in the same meeting saying he believes marriage is between a man and a woman. we just respectfully disagree on that issue. certainly, there is interest in marriage equality, since there are these cases before the supreme court. he went on to say that if the marriage act is ruled to be unconstitutional, then he believes that this is going to become an issue of federalism for the states to decide. as we're seeing, the states have already been deciding this on their own accord. it will be interesting because if prop 8 gets struck down, it's basically unlocking the country for states to go ahead and recognize marriage equality. all right. we want to turn to our last agenda item today, which is syria. a very, very serious topic, spencer. the fact of whether or not the administration is going to be arming opposition forces in syria. take us down the two paths of what that means. if we publicly and with full support of the obama administration start to do that while evaluating whether or not
syria and bashar al assad has crossed the red line of using chemical weapons on its own people. >> that's right. these are two different tracks. for the arming the rebels issue, it's something a lot of people on capitol hill have been calling for for a long time. it's unclear what the obama administration is actually willing to provide. it's only provided nonlethal aid so far. the syrian opposition is calling for anti-tank weapons, for artillery, for surface-to-air missiles. that's something the administration, particularly on the latter point, is reluctant to provide because the proliferation risks on missiles that can shoot down aircraft are really tremendous. internally, the administration isn't entirely sure how it can trust particular syrian opposition groups. then there's the issue of the red line, which the obama administration has set out about
chemical weapons use. right now, it's racing to verify if a chemical attack has happened and what the response would be if it turns out bashar al assad has violated the red line. >> all right. we want to thank our panel today. in our next agenda panel, will a hunger strike force president obama to final lly close gitmo? first, the man carjacked by the alleged boston marathon bombers talks about his incident. and did conrad murray's money woes -- are they to blame for michael jackson's death? new details about the doctor's death. that's coming out in a wrongful death trial. everybody has different investment objectives, ideas, goals, appetite for risk. you can't say 'one size fits all'. it doesn't. that's crazy.
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video you're about to see is very graphic. it is the final seconds before a cargo plane crashes at bagram airfield in afghanistan, killing seven crew members. you can see the plane ascend before quickly plummeting to the ground. the ground then bursting into a ball of fire. now, weather may have played a role in that crash. here's a look at some of the other stories that are topping the news now. a detective who investigated michael jackson's doctor testified that conrad murray was in debt more than $500,000 and would do whatever necessary to get paid. murray was expecting $150,000 a month before the pop star's death. jackson's mother is suing the concert promoter aeg claiming it failed to investigate murray properly. traces of ricin were found on the items in the trash and near the home of the second suspect arrested in the case. records also show he ordered castor beans. that's a key ingredient in ri n ricin. prosecutors claim the abortion doctor killed numerous
infants who were born alive and dubbed the clinic the house of horrors. a woman is under arrest for allegedly trying to spike bottles of starbucks orange juice with rubbing alcohol. another customer noticed her taking bottles from her bag and placing them on the shelf. and dozens of same-sex couples tied the knot in colorado just after the stroke of midnight. the state's new law legalized civil unions. it took effect at 12:01. ford c-max hybrid. when you're carrying a lot of weight, c-max has a nice little trait, you see, c-max helps you load your freight, with its foot-activated lift gate. but that's not all you'll see, cause c-max also beats prius v, with better mpg. say hi to the 47 combined mpg c-max hybrid. anncr: and many of the tornado's victims are... without homes tonight. girl: first, i saw it on cable. then i read about it online.
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oh, no, no, no...i'm sorry, but this is all wrong? i would never say that. writer: well what would you say? gecko: well i'd probably emphasize the savings. ya know...lose that green with envy bit. rubbish. it's just a reference about my complexion. writer: but the focus groups thought that the... gecko: focus groups. geico doesn't use focus groups. uhh...excuse me. no one told me we were using focus groups. vo: geico. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more on car insurance. want to get straight to this story. we have breaking news coming to us out of boston, where police say three additional suspects have been taken into custody in relation to the marathon bombing. our pete williams is standing by in washington with details on this. pete, what have you learned? >> well, thomas, we're told by a number of sources that these are arrests -- i think the best way to say it is in connection with the bombing. these are people that the fbi has been watching now for the past, oh, i'd say ten days. the question is whether they helped to take things out of dzhokhar tsarnaev's dorm room
after the bombing. now, no one is saying at this point that they have knowledge of the bombing in advance. that's been the big question. we'll probably learn more about the answer to that question later today when these charges are made public. but that's the -- that's what we're told is the arrest here. these are people who helped take things out of dzhokhar tsarnaev's dorm room after the bombing, but the question is, did they have any knowledge of the bombing or were they merely helping to cover it up afterwards? did they know the full extent of what was going on here? we don't know the answer to that question yet, but we hope to find out later today. nobody is saying at this point that their view has changed about whether any of the two suspects', dzhokhar and tamer n tamerlan, had any help before the bombing. i think the question in this case is whether there was any help to cover their tracks wittingly or unwittingly
afterwards. >> pete, when you talk about helping to potentially remove things from the dorm room, is there speculation about the ages of the people involved? could they have been somehow college friendships or you're thinking someone outside? >> yes, i'm told these were students. you know, you may remember that dzhokhar tsarnaev was a student at the university of massachusetts dartmouth campus. these were students. what their precise relationship to him is not clear to us at this point. we have conflicting information on that, so we won't go there. that's the nature of what's happening here. >> pete, you say they became people of interest roughly ten days ago and that's when they popped up on investigators and when they startsed to look into their backgrounds and connections. >> basically, yes. the fbi has been watching them, talking to them now for at least a week, ten days, is my information. >> all right, pete. i'm going to ask you to stand by. we have national investigate correspondent michael isikoff
joining us from boston. what are you hearing? >> reporter: the homeland security did confirm about ten days ago, i think it was last saturday, that three people were in custody, had been detained in new bedford in connection with this investigation. they were very vague on details. we didn't know precisely what the relationships were, but basically understanding is along the lines of what pete just said, that these were friends of dzhokhar tsarnaev, who may have assisted him after the fact. the big question is, what did they know beforehand and what did they know even after the fact? remember, obviously the boston marathon bombing was such a huge international news event. if dzhokhar tsarnaev was asking them to help dispose of evidence, anything that might remotely be considered evidence after that bombing, it would sort of reasonably raise grounds of suspicion among anybody,
certainly among investigators, that they may have known something. we don't know that yet. we don't know the charges. we'll wait to see this afternoon. this does raise the specter of other accomplices, wittingly or unwittingly. this seems to be the first new development that is pushing the investigation in that direction. >> michael, have your sources been able to reveal what was taken out of or what they suspect might have been taken out by these people from this dorm room? >> reporter: well, remember, we showed just in the last few days federal agents searching through that landfill in new bedford. we were told and reported that they were looking for a missing laptop, looking for fireworks receipts, and other evidence that could link dzhokhar tsarnaev to the bombing. so we can't say with any
certainty that these three suspects helped dispose of any of that, but we do know that that's what they were looking for. that's what the fbi was looking for. so i think that that's certainly going to be questioning of these suspects, if, in fact, the laptop is missing, these receipts are missing, other evidence is missing, they're going to be questioning very closely on whether they helped dispose of that. >> pete, through your sources and what you've been reporting, have investigators zeroed in on a place, a base of operations, so to speak, where the brothers may have worked from to construct any of the explosive devices that were used? >> no, i think that's still -- there are two things yet to be name e nailed down. one is, where were the bombs made. and were there any testing of the explosives? they haven't found either of those two. they did find residue of the kind of materials that authorities belief were used to make the bombs, the explosive
component. they say they found residue of that in the apartment of the older suspect, tamerlan tsarnaev. but whether that's just because fireworks were bought there and taken away or whether they built them there, they don't know. they haven't found, you know, a definite workbench, that kind of thing. secondly, you know, investigators are skeptical that a person could make or two people could make three bombs all of which worked the way they were designed to. we know of three pressure cooker bombs, two at the marathon and one at the scene in watertown at the shootout. all appeared to go off the way they were designed to. three for three is pretty good for making them for the first time, based on reading a magazine article. so they're still wondering if they didn't test them somewhere else. they found no indication of t t that. >> pete, let's be specific. these three people have been taken into custody for potential arrest or they have been arrested? >> well, i don't think there's much of a distinction between taken into custody and arrested. so they've been arrested. there are charges pending
against them. so this is not merely for questioning. we don't know what the charges are. and let's consider the fact here that we've been told by several law enforcement officials that this is in connection with the bombing. they could also be -- you know, if the authorities wanted to hold them, they could hold them on a number of different charges. immigration violations. we don't know what the charges are. the big question here, as i've said before, and as mike just said, no one is saying at this point if they had knowledge of the bombing beforehand. that's the big question. the question here is -- and i think what the investigators, we've been told for the past week or so, have been trying to figure out is, is this a matter of simply people doing something to help after the fact, turning a blind eye to what they might have been doing, having some suspicions but not saying anything, or knowing full well. that's the spectrum. we don't know. we won't know until we see the charges where the authorities are coming down on that spectrum. >> michael, as pete points out,
the investigators and investigation still is trying to pinpoint exactly where their base of operations was, where they could have been working together to construct the materials used. from what you're hearing and from your different sources, do they have any definitive leads on where potentially they would have had to test some of these materials potentially to see how well they were able to construct them? >> reporter: no, i think that's something that they've been actively looking for in addition to the pressure cooker bombs that were used in the marathon bombing and the night of the watertown shooting. there was also five pipe bombs found during that watertown shootout. so there were -- there's quite a bit of explosives that had been assemble bidd by these people. i just want to come back to the question of charges. what we had been told and what had been officially confirmed back last -- two weekends ago now, was that there had been three people detained on immigration charges, which is sort of a standard investigative
technique here. you don't have evidence to charge them with a crime, but you find that they've overstayed their visa or have committed some other violation of immigration law that gives investigators the grounds to hold these people while they continue their investigation. it looks very much like that's what's happened here. these people have been in custody for ten days now. if it's the same people. but we do know there were people who had been detained ten days ago. i think the supposition is these may be the same people. we're going to have to wait and see when we hear presumably something from the fbi later today. >> okay. hopefully we'll get that link to find out if those three people are the same three people. pete, bring us up to speed in what your sources have been able to reveal about katherine russell, the wife of tamer list -- tamerlan.
>> well, i guess the big piece is whether the dna found on the pressure cooker bomb matches her dna. we have been told that female dna was found on one of the bomb parts. authorities went to her house to get a dna sample from her. i'm told this morning they didn't have the results back. they do say, though, that if it is a match, that doesn't necessarily mean that she had anything to do with the bombing. she could have innocently picked up one of these pieces before the bombs were assembled, not knowing what they were. she could have -- authorities say there's something called transfer of dna where, you know, you touch a person, you get the dna of them on your hands, and you transfer it then by touching one of the bomb pieces. someone else could have transferred her dna. so there's a range of possibilities here, but we don't know what the answer is yet. i think that's the big thing they're waiting to find out in terms of her. >> gentlemen, i'm going to ask you to stand by. jim cavanaugh joins us now.
you're a retired atf special agent in charge. as you're hearing from the reporting going on today, how big of a deal could this be, a big break, if there are three people that could reveal some answers about the brothers and what their method and reasonings were? >> well, i think it's real important. the questions are what you've been discussing. did they help prior? did they purchase some of the components possibly or deliver them? that could be not full knowledge of conspiracy to bomb, but maybe just a person who went out and purchased some items for them. could they be persons who disposed of items after the fact? because they're college students. so it can vary from accessory before the fact to accessory after the fact, like mike said, to an immigration charge. or if it's really serious, it
would be conspiracy to bomb. that would be where they really were part and parcel to some of the activities. >> jim, when we talk about katherine russell, the wife of tamerlan, and the fact she has been asked for a dna sample because of female dna being found on one of the devices used, how broad of a definition is that to say female dna was found on one of the devices? as pete points out, there could have been some type of transfer dna that allowed for her to be within proximity and it somehow transferring to the bomb, whether through a vehicle or something or other. >> right. what they've got to do is they take the samples from the spouse. they'll get the samples from other family members. you know, could be someone who told the bomb. also, they have to check after the fact. a victim could have picked up the pieces of the pressure
cooker to move it, an emergency worker. they have a lot of checking to do. the thing about dna is once you find out it's a match, then you know exactly where it came from. so that's not a condemnation of criminality, but you have to put the pieces together to see how they could have touched it. >> if you're just joining us, n b news can confirm that three additional suspects have been taken into custody in relation to the boston marathon bombing. that happened today. we have pete williams reporting out of washington, d.c. michael isikoff in boston. micha michael, right now the boston police are saying there is no threat to the public, but how eager is boston and in the people in and around watertown to find out some answers and whether or not there is more connective tissue to what these brothers did? >> reporter: well, look, i'm standing here in copley square right now in front of the
memorial for the bombing. my sense is the city has very mu much, while still getting over what took place, is moving on. i don't sense any sense of anxiety among people on the streets here or concern that there's any greater threat. certainly, all the statements from law enforcement and public officials have done everything they could to soothe and alleviate concerns of the public. so based on what we're learning today, i'm not sure that this development is going to change that at all. these do seem to be auxiliary players in this plot. there's no formal charges yet against them. if, in fact, these are the students that had been detained earlier, they may well have been in custody all along. that's one thing i'm going to be looking for this afternoon. are these the same people who we
have been told had been detained two saturdays ago? but all that said, it is worth remembering that federal conspiracy law is pretty broad. even if these were -- even if these students were unwitting accomplices in the plot, it could still ensnare them in a broader federal conspiracy charge related to this bombing. it often will involve players who were -- took -- did individual pieces in the conspiracy but were not necessarily a part of it from the beginning. >> okay. so again, boston is paying, the pd saying there is no threat to the public. pete, let's talk about what michael was bringing up, the fact of finding auxiliary players. >> well, before we go to that, let me give you some new information here. we have been sort of holding off on saying one piece of information. we got some confirmation. these were roommates of dzhokhar
tsarnaev at umass dartmouth. there are three people in all. the indication we have is that this is all related to things after the bombing. there's no indication, we're told, that they had any knowledge of the bombing beforehand or any participation in it beforehand. these are all based on actions afterwards, as we've been saying for the past couple of days, that the fbi has been looking into people who took things out of his dorm room. that's what this is. it's still not 100% clear to us and may not be clear to investigators at this point precisely what the extent of their knowledge was. whether this was, as i said a moment ago, sort of turning a blinds eye, choosing not to think too hard about this, having suspicions. where it is, it's still not clear to us. and whether we'll see the charges today, i don't know. it's going to take a while to work all of this out, but that's
who they were. two of them have immigration issues, so that squares with what we were told before, that they've perhaps -- two of the three have been in federal detention for a while. the third one, i'm told, was arrested today, just this morning. >> so pete, again, when we talk about these roommates and what's been removed from where they were living, you're saying that what's in question right now is whether they were unwittingly removing items that could be of concern and paramount to the investigation or purposefully removing things. >> well, purposefully removing things. but the question is, in doing so, did they realize they were potentially helping to conceal evidence, or were they just doing this to help a friend? should they have thought about this a little harder? that's the question. certainly removing things on purpose, the question is in doing so, did they feel they were, you know, helping in the commission of a crime or just helping a friends. >> well, it certainly also leads
one to believe whether or not they had interaction with dzhokhar after the bombing, and if he was to reveal any of the information that they seem to be so willing to reveal while they were on the run from the police, whether they would bring in those people and let them know what they had done. >> fair question. >> all right. so pete, once again, you're finding out these three people -- and do we know the dorm situation setup? was it a suite? what time of room -- >> yes, that's what i'm told. described as roommates or suite mates. >> so these three people have been taken into custody. again, we don't know if these are the people that michael isikoff had mentioned had been taken into custody two weekends ago in regards to immigration violations. you say that there are two at least that you are aware of that do have immigration violations issues that were taken into custody in relation to what police say are connected to the bombing suspects. >> right. >> okay. all right. so again, three people have been taken into custody there in
boston. boston police have sent out a tweet saying there is no threat to the public right now. trying to figure out exactly what their relation was to the items that they removed from this dorm room. pete, the dorm room itself had only had -- there were only four people living in there? there aren't more suite mates that might have been sharing that space? >> i don't know the answer to that question. >> okay. all right. so again, these are people that were college acquaintances of dzhokhar tsarnaev. we don't know if they had any encounters with tamerlan though, pete, correct? >> i think the best way to put it is what we do know. what we do know is three suite mates of dzhokhar tsarnaev, a student at umass connecticut, are now in federal custody, charges pending. we don't know what the charges are. they could be obstruction of justice. we just don't know. authorities claim that they removed things from dzhokhar tsarnaev's dorm room, their dorm
room as well, presumably possessions of his after the bombing. no indication they had any knowledge of the bombing beforehand. the question is, what was their state of mind as they were removing these things afterwards? that's unclear to us at this point. >> pete, the items of interest that we do know that are missing would be a laptop and certain receipts. >> don't know what the items are. >> okay. michael isikoff is standing by in boston for us as well. you have something to add? >> reporter: i just wanted to say that one critical question here, of course, is when did they remove these items? the fbi on that thursday after the bombing released their photos, thursday afternoon, so i think the big question in terms of the severity of the charges is going to be, was it after the fbi had identified the suspects first by photograph and then by name the next morning, or was it before? i think that will make a huge difference here.
we don't know the answer to that question right now, but that's clearly going to be one thing we're all going to be looking for when we learn when the fbi does speak about this. >> pete, you don't have anymore on that timeline aspect, we don't know the answer to that question right now, but that's clearly one thing we'll be looking for when the fbi does speak about this. >> pete, you don't have anything more on that timeline aspect for you? >> i'm sorry. i was doing something else. >> the timeline that michael is bringing up was when the authorities released the images of the brothers as being the suspects of interest, and whether or not these three college roommates were tipped off and recognized the brothers as being involved. that's when they started moving things? >> no idea when they did, no. after the bombing, but i don't know when. >> okay. again a lot of still answers to come. pete, you're thinking we might know more this afternoon with formal charges? >> well, "might" is the opera
tiff word here. i'm quite confident that there are charges that have been prepared, but when we'll see them, i just don't know. >> how much pressure there? washington right now? we've seen a lot of elected leaders coming out to talk about the fbi and failed intelligence. is there added pressure to reveal items, to have arrests right now? i know we've been and certainly you as well, have been fantastic in being cautious about what we are reporting, but is there pressure to move this case forward, coming from inside washington? >> no, i don't think so. the congressional criticism and concern has been focused really on two issues. one is the questioning some members of congress saying he should have been treated as an enemy combatant, and for the purpose of questioning, have him questioned by intelligence officials and then turned back over to the civil justice system
and eventually tried in civilian court. that's been one thing. the sect is whether the intelligence agencies properly handled the concern expressed by the russians about the older suspect tamerlan in 2011, and whether there was sufficient follow-up, but i don't believe -- i think members of congress have been unanimous in praising the law enforcement response since the bombing, both the meet on the scene response at the site of the marathon, and the very rapt work by the fbi and other law enforcement agencies to move this case ahead and have a suspect arrested the same week. so no, i don't think there's any pressure along those lines. i think members of congress are content to let the law enforcement process work its way. there's no pressure on them. i think everybody shapes the same goal to make sure that anyone vote is wrapped up and leads overseas are followed, questions still remaining about was there any overseas
connection, doesn't appear to be so, but what exactly was he do overseas. all those questions, but i think there's no pressure to hurry up and get a quick response. >> pete, thank you very much. the bureau chief for "usa today" susan page is patiently waiting to talk with us, and i'm going to rope abu this conversation, as you've been following this rand recording, we have seen some of our elected leaders come out and bring the fbi to task for potential failures, as pete is saying, most people want a wait-and-see approach until we have the facts and then make assessments from there. what's your assessment of what's going on? >> i think these arrests in boston go to the biggest single question, which is two lone wolf guys who did this terrible bombing? or is it a larger conspiracy? these arrests go to potential conspiracy after the bombing. of course we're still
investigating whether they are lengths to a trainer, or to foreign interests that want to harm the united states. the administration has, i think made the case. and again we're still finding out the conspiracy of the connective tissue between they three arrests. and if they were just trying to help out a friend by removing stuff, or if they did something with more sinister intention, that is, with them with full knowledge or potential knowledge, because there's a big distinction when law enforcement officials reveal that. >> yes, absolutely. there's so much we don't know about these arrested. for one thing, what is the immigration issue that two of them had? where are they from? these are questions that would be good to answer, to know more about. were necessary just college kids behaving in a way that adults would say is stupid and unwise,
or is there something more sinister going on? that is i'm sure something we'll find out later from the boston police. >> do you think at this point, though, we will see if there's new information to come out of this, see the peter kings of the world pipe down about the fbi if we do get some forward motion on some details? because it seems there's been a lull of information, people are looking for answers, the country's been terrorized by this, so do you think if we do get more information that will help quiet down certain people? >> you know, i don't think so. i think we're in for a period of scrutiny about a couple issues. were the warnings from it is russian government taken certificatesly enough? was the initial questioning handled in the appropriate and right way? and is there a larger conspiracy? these are not questions that the arrests will quiet down. i they we'll deal with it for months and months. >> so to recap three
suspects have been taken into custody in connection with the marathon attacks. according to our source, they were suite mates of dzhokhar tsarnaev. there's no more information available at this time about exactly what they could be charged with, but the assumption is that they have removed things from the dorm room of dzhokhar tsarnaev, but we're going to work on the details and bring them to you right here. don't go anywhere. "now with alex wagner" comes your way next. you can't say 'one size fits all'. it doesn't. that's crazy. we're all totally different. ishares core. etf building blocks for your personalized portfolio. find out why 9 out of 10 large professional investors choose ishares for their etfs. ishares by blackrock. call 1-800-ishares for a prospectus, which includes investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses. read and consider it carefully before investing. risk includes possible loss of principal.
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marathon bombing. it is unclear what charge could be filed or what their role might have been. boston police have tweeted there is no threat to the public. this weekend several lawmakers said police were still looking for what they called persons of interest. yesterday the president praise the the fbi's work both after the bombing and before it. >> i think that all our law enforcement officials performed in an exemplary fashion after the bombing had taken place. based on what i have seen so far, the fbi performed its duti duties, the department of homeland security did what it was supposed to be doing. but this is hard stuff. joining me today editorial director of "the national journal" ron foundier. karen finney, contributing editor at "new york" m