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tv   MSNBC Live  MSNBC  May 7, 2013 8:00am-9:01am PDT

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>> the real hero here is amanda. i mean, she is is real hero. i mean, she's the one that got this rolling. you know, we're just -- we're following her lead. without her, none of us would be here today. >> so that ball started rolling when a neighbor heard berry screaming from inside the home as he passed by as he had so many times before. however, this time he went to check it out. >> so i go on the porch -- i go on the porch and she says help me get out. i've been in here a long time. she comes out with a little girl and she says, call 911. my name is amanda berry. >> as that neighbor kicked down the door, amanda berry carrying that little child, a 6-year-old girl. police were called, authorities rescued two other women found alive inside. then police took three suspects into custody. investigators revealing today they were at the home at least twice in the last time since the women had vanished. here's what happened back in
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2004. >> police went to address, knocked on the door, were unsuccessful in connection with making any contact with anyone inside that home. >> that was after they were notified of screaming coming from inside that house. today's ending, the family and friends gathering outside the hospital that the women who left this morning never thought they would see. >> the whole time down here i cried but now i'm just excited. excited to see her, hold her, excited to squeeze her, tell her how much i love her, miss her. >> this morning we want to get you up to speed with the latest developments on this. joining me right now, clint van zandt, former fbi profiler. joining me by phone is ed smart, the father of elizabeth smart, abducted at the age of 14 and held captive for nine months. kristen dahlgren will be joining the conversation in a moment. clint, i want to start with you. this is certainly an eye-opening, a miraculous story to find out that these three women have now been found, they've been take on the
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hospital an released back to their families. but it was the police in cleveland who held a press conference this morning on the investigation. i want to play more of that as well. but first, this is sandra ruiz, one of the aunts of the victims who had this to say moments ago. >> these girls, these women are so strong. stronger than i am. i will tell you that much. and they all have a positive attitude. and this is what we need from everyone. we need to still be a family, neighborhood with neighborhood. we need to watch out for all kids. really. watch who your neighbor is because you never know. >> watch who your neighbor is. you will never know. three families on this long road to recovery with these three rescued women and little 6-year-old girl as well. kristen dahlgren, what are the police saying about the three castro brothers under arrest and what they knew about them over the last decade? >> reporter: well, thomas, they're still trying to figure it out. they point out they have a
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decade's worth of forensic evidence and of things to go through to figure out the role that these men played in the women's disappearance and what exactly the women went through. it's interesting because you're talking about neighborhoods and neighborhoods noticing things. i'm here in this neighborhood and people say that they had no idea this was going on right under their noses. i want to bring in israel lugo, a neighbor here. you knew aerial castro. and you had no idea this was happening. >> no, i sure didn't. like i say, like an average joe. i know him for about 18 years and everything and he would come out here, play around with the kids and everything, you know what i'm saying? >> reporter: you said that you saw him with the little girl, the 6-year-old, just this past sunday playing in a park. what can you tell us about that? >> i was -- i seen him before with the little girl up and down in the car. yes, i was at seymour park with the baby and he pulled up in the
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truck, looked like a little happy family. i was, like, whose kid is this? he said it's my girlfriend's daughter. i said, oh, okay, you know what i'm saying? it looked like a dad and a daughter date, like a typical sunday, you know what i'm saying? >> reporter: but you had never seen really children around, never seen the three women in this house here. >> never. never. the first time i seen that girl's face was yesterday. >> incredible. and that little girl we're talking about is amanda berry's daughter according to police. you did say, though, there were some indication that something was going on at the house. you didn't see anything specifically but your sister saw something back in 2011. >> yes. >> reporter: what did she see? >> in 2011 somewhere like around november, it was about 10:30 somewhere at night, cold, snowing. she's walking home and tells me hey, there's somebody upstairs at the house, a girl and her baby, pounding on the window, talking like she wants to get out. >> so i ended up walking over there and everything.
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i'm looking. like i said, you can't see nothing because you got plywood on the windows sh dark curtains and everything like that. >> reporter: but she saw someone. >> yeah. she was crying. i called the police. they pounded on that man's door 15, 20 times, real hard. nobody answered the door. they got back in the squad car and left. >> reporter: you said there was another time when not you but someone else in the neighborhood, in the retirement home behind saw something in the backyard. >> yes. there was four to five elderly people came over here waiting on police saying they seen three men in the backyard with three females acting like they was dogs, like being -- treating them like animals with the leash around their neck and all that. >> reporter: had collars and leashes on. >> and that they were naked. you know what i'm saying? it's an buy us, -- an abuse, truthfully. my backyard. it's bad. >> reporter: difficult things to hear.
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neighbors here surprised by what happened but also talking about these events that happened over the past few years perhaps some indication, thomas, of what was going on in that house. >> kristen, stand by. i'll bring in clint van zandt and ed smart with us on the telephone. clint, as we're hearing from the neighbors that are giving eyewitness reports to what they have experienced over the years and also with notifying police. again, nbc news has not independently verified the reports of what neighbor just said that was witnessed from the nursing home behind the house. clint, it seems as if these young women had several opportunities potentially to be discovered a lot earlier if police had properly svelted earlier calls. >> this is almost, thomas, an instant replay of the jaycee dugard case. you remember the 11-year-old girl who was kidnapped in california, held for 18 years, had two children by her abduc r
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abductor, was held in the backyard is-in a tent-like structure. law enforcement, neighbors looked over the fence, missed opportunities, thomas. whenever you have a case that goes on this long and someone is held in this environment you are going to find out that friends, neighbors, relatives, law enforcement, there are going to be missed opportunities to rescue in this case these three young women. there's going to be a lot of soul searching going on. but this one report that kristen just had, i mean, that is terrible to suggest what these women might have gone through and realize they were held for over ten years in at least one case. that's over 4,000 days this they were subjected to something like this. that's an unbelievable period of time. and now these women have to come back into society, find out as amanda said when she got out yesterday and free, well, free and freedom is going to have a
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whole new definition for them, thomas. >> we bring up jaycee dugard. she she said, "these individuals need the opportunity to heal and connect back into the world. this isn't who they are. it is only what happened to them. the human spirit is incredibly resilient. more than ever this reaffirms we should never give up hope." that again from jaycee dugard. we have eld smart on the phone. his daughter, elizabeth smart, her story captivated the attention of the country when she was found alive and well after being kidnapped nine months earlier. ed, a lot of parallels that play out i guess when it comes to the hiding in plain sight almost of what these women might have gone through if it turns out to be that way. but as what elizabeth has learned, what your family has learned, what's the road ahead for these women as they get back to their lives, try to reintegrate into their families? >> they're never going to be able to go back to the old normal they had, but there will be a new normal. i think the comments that have been made from so many people
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about giving the love and support to the family and understanding that, you know, a person can be out in plain sight yet they're as good as handcuffed because of what can happen around them, whether it's threats of their family, their children. it's just -- it's as good as -- i mean, i would say that these people are incredible manipulators, incredible. >> you're talking to the psychological aspect of all of this and how they would then potentially use threats against any one of the women in this situati situation, i would imagine with three in that home if one tried to escape they could use threats. clint, maybe you could sfeek this, could use threats that they would hurt the other women or anything like that. we're showing the area in cleveland where originally the three missing women were reported kidnapped. as you can see, just within blocks of each other over this period of time, starting in
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2002, and then another going missing in 2003 and the final going, gina dejesus, going missing in '04. but, clint, as eld points out, there is a lot to take in. the complexity of the psychological torture that these women could have experienced. >> well, it is. and realize that, you know, for a period of three years a young woman within a few blocks of the last victim one after another after another went missing. it was like a kidnap or kidnappers were collecting young women. and then to subject them to what we're starting to believe are these terrible situations. and as ed is addressing right now, there are emotional and psychological chains that are much stronger than any handcuffs that man has ever made where you can pose threats against the victim, in this case one of the victim's children, the other women with them. i've seen family members threatened. i've seen kidnappers say if you
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try to escape i'm going to find your dog and kill your dog and use that as a way to keep a young person as a kidnap victim. so all of these ways, all of these chains are used by these sociopathic individuals to keep someone as a perfect victim, which evidently these one to three men were able to do for at least a decade. >> all three of the castro brothers live in this house or just the one, kristen? >> reporter: no. >> one brother owned the house and realized the house was in default at the time, financial default, and yet there are relatives, neighbors who say the other two brothers had access to the house. >> okay. >> but some of the interviews done suggest that nobody actually lived there but just visited. >> kristen, since you're on the scene, explain how police were able to apprehend all three of them at once. >> reporter: yeah.
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and, clint is right there. the neighbors were telling me that they didn't even think that ariel castro lived here. they would just see him come occasionally to this house. i spoke with their uncle who said he was absolutely shocked by all of this. he had no idea. and he said it was a complete surprise to him that all three brothers were arrested. he said that they didn't all live in this neighborhood. but apparently police think that there is some link from all three brothers to this case. >> kristen dahlgren reporting from the scene in cleveland, ohio. clint van disinfectant and ed smart joining us for the conversation. thanks to all three of you. we'll continue to bring new details as we get them. amazing story out of cleveland. still ahead, the gop civil war over immigration reform. could this blow up the republican party, tank the gang of eight compromise? our ajep da panel weighs in. and chris christie's big surprise. the new jersey governor revealing he had secret weight
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loss surgery. that's fueling talk of a 2016 presidential bid. then decision day down south in south carolina. in just a few hours we learn whether former disgraced governor mark sanford make ascomback or becomes a political also-ran. here's a word you shod keep in mind. unbiased. some brokerage firms are. but way too many aren't. why? because selling their funds makes them more money. which makes you wonder -- isn't that a conflict? search "proprietary mutual funds." yikes! then go to e-trade. we've got over 8,000 mutual funds, and not one of them has our name on it. we're in the business of finding the right investments for you. e-trade. less for us. more for you. the fund's prospectus contains its investment objectives, risks, charges, expenses, and other important information and should be read and considered carefully before investing. for a current prospectus, visit
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civil war, some republicans are pushing back on a new study that puts a huge price tag on immigration reform. the heritage foundation headed up by a former republican senator jim demint says the new gang of eight bill would cost taxpayers $6.3 trillion, and that's not all. >> the point is to remind those who have come here lawfully and all american taxpayers that amnesty is going to cost them trillions of dollars over the course of their live ls,
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diminish their opportunities, and probably lower their income. >> an immigration hearing under way on capitol hill. you see grover norquist, famed anti-tax conservative, saying the numbers are flawed. >> the statisticians looked at the first one and said i hope they'll fix this, but they didn't fix it. they doubled down. then they added costs of legal immigrants, people who are here legally, and stick them in the six, educating a 5-year-old who was born in this country as a citizen is not a cost of passing the senate bill. that is going to be there. >> so the same assumptions you now achieve the number are the same assumptions -- >> it got worse, actually, the quality of the work. >> let's turn now and say hello to our progressive panel. congressional reporter for talking points memo, an mbs political analyst and author of "47%: uncovering the romney video that rocked the 2012
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election," and maria tracy kumar, an msnbc contributor. great to have you here. we've been watching grover norquist testify this morning. he's pro immigration reform. getting all these different 2013s coming out on the heels of the her tanl foundation's report trace basically trying to scare moderates to move away from this as they're referring to it as an amnesty bill. jeff flake has tweeted here we go again, new heritage study claims huge cost for immigration reform, ignores economic benefits, no dynamic scoring. "haley bar boyer says it's not a good study analysis for good policy. when talking act moving forward with this and having a real debate and a concentrated debate on what this means for the left and the right, the right is worried about having fingerprints all over a failed immigration reform bill, aren't they. >> i would say the republican party is worried about this, the strategists who are thinking about the party's long-term
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viability, and presidential hopefuls like marco rubio and paul ryan, who want to support this bill, they know they need to support immigration reform to remain viable candidates in a national election. so i think what you're seeing now is the extent to which immigration reform is such a fragile effort with the potential of blowing up into an all-out civil war within the republican party. so the question at this point is whether the tea party is going to mobilize in full force like they did on health care and if so, that could create real problems for the whole effort and major problems for the republican party down the road, because it would turn into a question of for republican lawmakers to decide whether to watch their right flanks and to protect themselves in a primary challenge or whether to take their chances there and think about their viability with the general electorate. >> leading the charge on this from the heritage foundation, isn't it interesting to see how senator ted cruz is emerging as the anti-marco rubio when it comes to talking about immigration we re form and what
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it means to catapulting his freshman senatorial career onto bigger and greater things? >> yeah. right now i think the conservative part of the republican party, the tea party movement, people associated, are kind of at defcon 4 or 5 regarding the immigration bill. they've started attacking it. the fact that the heritage foundation, which used to be seen as the center of the conservative movement in washington, is now being attacked by haley barbour, jeff flake, and grover norquist, is highly significant. but we haven't seen full mobilization. we haven't seen them go up to defcon 3, 2, or 1 with rush limbaugh and everybody else going, you know, nuts over this. if that happens, we're going to see this be reflected in the house republican caucus. and it may still get out of the senate, but this may become not just a civil war but a bloody civil war inside that house republican caucus and even if it
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passes it may leave the republicans kind of in tatters at the end of the day here. this is kind of historic right now. >> maria, as we ramp up to the midterms, isn't this harkening back to the 2010 playbook? not going to play so well now. >> absolutely right, thomas. the reason i don't think it plays so well is that unlike 2010 where they had roger ayles basically giving over the conservative media platform to really make sure that the republican party and the tea party had a platform to unite everybody around health care reform and basically going against it, roger ayles has said he's for immigration reform and path to citizenship and has had the network back off from this. i think it will be did i feel for cruz and the rest of the party to get that grassroots mobilization that's needed. i also think the republican party because of nor kwi, because of the cato institute, went out so fiercely against what the heritage foundation --
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the fact it was going to have such a high price tag for immigration reform, i think you have those allies within the republican party saying, you know what, absent a comprehensive immigration reform we're basically going to have a la tino vote program. that's what the republican party is trying to avoid come 2014. >> thanks so all of you. we have abbreviated time this morning because of the breaking news out of cleveland. thank you so much. always great to see all three of you. our top story today, the remarkable horrifying saga of the three missing cleveland women found alive. the psychological impact of being held prisoner in play by play sight for so many years. and what does this mean for their families as these women come home? we'll talk with the father of kidnap and murder victim polly klaas coming up. and another shocking case. the official in charge of the sexual assault prevention program in the air force arrested himself for allegedly groping a woman. his arrest coming as the military is grappling with sexual assaults in the ranks. we'll talk with kristen gillibrand.
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ranked "highest in customer loyalty for brokerage and investment companies." more than a thousand guns off the streets. the l.a. police department collecting 1,100 of them -- assault weapons, shotguns and handguns during itself most recent gun buyback. a way to put weapons in police hands when officers are getting caught up in scenes like this one captured on dashcam video in ohio. a suspect armed with an ak-47 let loose with the weapon after he was pulled over for a simple traffic stop. joining me is los angeles mayor antonio villaraigosa, member of mayors against illegal guns. i want to look at what lapd got their hands on. 516 happened gunns, 381 rifles, 226 shotguns, 49 assault weapons, and we just showed that dramatic video of a suspect opening fire on police in ohio. he had an ak-47. 1,100 is certain lay lot of
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weapons, sir. but is there concrete evidence thaed the buybacks actually result in a decrease for police officers on scenes like the one we're just seeing there? >> well, it was 1,100 in that buyback. it's about 11,000 over the last four or five years. that's 11,000 guns off the streets. as you know, people are more likely to be a victim of a suicide or an accident than they are defending their home. so getting these guns or particularly the assault weapons off the street is important. the numbers speak for themselves. l.a. is safer than any time since 1952. >> as i mentioned earlier, you are a member of mayors against illegal guns. politico reporting today democrats are worried some ads caller for gun control like those out of your group could backfire. look at the latest ad featuring an nra member whose sister was murdered in houston during the nra convention. >> the day after he got the gun,
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he shot seven people and killed my sister and two of her co-workers. i think had a universal criminal background check been done my sister would be with us today. good afternoon, everyone. i am here to speak for zina since she's not here to speak for herself. >> is this working or is there validity to the argument that holding fellow democrats' feet to the fire over gun control could backfire on the party? >> well, i didn't have a vote on who was targeted but i will say this. mayors against illegal guns is a bipartisan organization where both democrat and republicans are. and having a countervailing force to the nra is important, and that's what mayors against illegal guns are doing. they're telling a story. why should anyone, anyone vote against universal background checks, whether they're democrat or republican? how is that the middle ground, as i heard one senator say? the fact of the matter is most
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of the gun violence that takes place in america today takes place in our cities, and that's why mayors are standing up. and i applaud mayor bloomberg for funding ads. i believe that he will target not just democrats but republicans as well. i think it's important to have a countervailing force to the nra as i said. >> los angeles mayor antonio villaraigosa, good to see you. >> good to see you. still ahead, three women held captive in plain sight for ten years, the incredible story of how they were found and what we're learning art their ordeal. and the long road ahead. we'll talk with marc klaas. a zi. i'm really glad that girl stayed at home. vo: expedia helps 30 million travelers a month find what they're looking for. one traveler at a time. expedia. find yours.
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to find these three girls recovered, well, it just makes the police department -- it just gives us a boost. it really, really does. >> my sister had the strength of a thousand woman.
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she knew. she knew and she kept -- we had the strength. she kept us on the strength. and that's -- you know, i give her -- i don't know how she did it. if it was my daughter, i don't know. she's my niece, and i -- i survived day by day with god. >> you just heard from the cleveland police chief there, also the aunt of gina dejesus, one of the three women abducted and then found after ten years in captivity. we're following the breaking news that's coming to us minute by minute out of cleveland. these three women -- amanda berry, gina dejesus, and michele knight -- and a 6-year-old girl now reyou nighted with their families. three suspects are under arrest. joining me now to discuss this, jeff gardere, a psychologist and nbc news contributor, and marc klaas, whose 12-year-old daughter polywas kidnapped and killed almost 20 years ago. he's also the founder of klaas kids foundation. jeff, i want to start with you as we have had the opportunity earlier in this hour to speak with ed smart, whose daughter, elizabeth, was kidnapped for
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nine months, basically living in plain sight with her captors as they held her, tortured her, sexually assaulted her. as we are learning more details about this and from neighbors who have reported instances of problems at that house, called police, as these women are now back with their families. explain the long road, the psychological integration that they need to go through. >> well, i think what will definitely happen, of course they will be debriefed by law enforcement, they will be assisted by mental health counselors so that they can ask the right questions. you don't want to go in too early so that they are retraumatized over and over again and then they can shut down. so you want to take your time, get them to be comfortable, get them to stabilize medically and psychologically, and then begin that slow road to rehabilitation. again, the key here will be taking your time and working at their particular pace.
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one other thing, their spirituality, their religion is going to be very, very important for them as we see with drug addiction as we see with issues of grave personal injury. sometimes you have to give it over to that higher power because you may not have the emotional resources to do it on your own. and we see that these people are -- the families are religious. >> amanda berry, who was able to get the attention of a neighbor is being heralded as a hero. the neighbor ka that came up to the door is a guy named charles rams ramsey. i want to play what he had to say about the man who lived in this home. >> we seen this dude every day. i mean, every day. >> how long have they lived here? >> i've been here a year. you understand where i'm coming from? i barbecue with this dude. we eat ribs and what not and listen to salsa music. you see where i'm coming from? >> and you had no indication -- >> not a clue that that girl was in that house or anybody else was in there against their will
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because how he is is -- he just comes out to his backyard, plays with the dogs, tinkers with his cars and motorcycles, goes back in the house. you look and look away because he's not doing anything but the average stuff. you see what i'm saying? nothing exciting about him. well, until today. >> being referred to there mark as a regular day. your organization works very hard to keep children safe. as we look at where these three women rr abducted over three-year period and now being held captive as their families have realized within miles of their homes, how can police learn from this? how can families out there with young kids learn from this to be able to talk about this in ways that can be constructive? >> sure. first, we have to hand it to charles ramsey, truly abamerican hero today and because of him and amanda and circumstances the sun is shining a little brighter on the united states of america today. first of all, we have to really recognize that this is a local
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situation, and the vast majority of kidnappings in the united states are local crimes. in this case, the girls were apparently taken from very close proximity to each other, at least geographically, and they were being held within just blocks of the location where they were taken. so i think what we need to do is have conversations with our kids and tell them -- not fear-based conversations, not if you talk to strangers you're going to end up like these girls did but rather -- you see how difficult this is -- rather the the conversation has to be, you know, we work very hard to keep you safe, we do it in the family, law enforcement does it, let's have a conversation about ways to keep yourself safe. for instance, let's remember that you don't -- you want to tell your parent where is you are all the time. you want to be outside with at least one other person. you want to trust your feelings if something feels wrong, it is wrong, and you want to put distance between yourself and it. and if you're being victimized
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you don't go to the second location with the guy. you don't let him take you away from your comfort zone. >> mark, this is, though, a stark reminder that while your foundation and others exist because there are young women who are existing in situations right now as we speak, existing in situations like the house that we're seeing. >> well, yeah. there are probably other people that are hostages right now. we know that there are hundreds of thousands of american girls that are being sold in the sex trade, victims of human trafficking, and that these girls, too, are being held under threats of intimidation, coercion, perhaps they, too, are being tortured, perhaps they, too, are being held by physical restraints. so we really have to understand that american girls particularly are very much a threat or very much at risk and that many of them are being held against their will and then do what is necessary to recover those girls
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and give them an opportunity like these girls will have an opportunity should they follow dr. gardere's advice to be able to put their lives back together again. >> gentlemen, thanks. mark, as you said, the sun is shining a little brighter with their safe return. jeff gardere, marc klaas, thanks again. couscokju kuz curious cousc scratch marks allegedly from the vick the tim who fought him off. he's been charged with battery, removed from his post. this news comes as the pentagon gets read to release its annual report on sexual assaults in the military. a 6% rise but a stunning rise of 40% in anonymous assault claims. joining me is new york democratic senator kristin gillibra gillibrand, a member of the senate armed services committee. the air force chief of stab had to say about this very incident
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in the senate a short time ago. take a listen. >> this is unacceptable that this occurs anywhere at any time in our air force and we will not quit working this problem. >> so defense secretary hagel will review the rules surrounding military convictions for sexual assault in march after an air force general threw out a fighter pilot's jury conviction for aggravated vault. but where do you take that from here? a lot of people are saying that's not enough and other reforms are needed. >> it's not enough. here's a perfect example. the person who was in charge of preventing sexual assaults is actually arrested for committing a sexual assault. it's unacceptable. and there has to be an entire reform of how we address these kinds of cases. it has to be removed from the chain of command because the reality is if you have something like 19,000 cases or even 26,000 cases as reported today, each year, members of the military are being sexually assaulted, there's a reason why only a handful are being reported and
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going to trial. it's because there is an entire culture that is not supporting these men and women coming forward to get justice. i think we have to reform the system. i think it needs a close look and just changing one part of this reform that secretary hagel has recommended isn't enough. you need to remove all this decisionmaking out of the chain of command so victims can come forward and receive justice in these cases. >> a lot of this was exposed in the documentary "the invisible war," an oscar-nominated documentary. while we talk about the fact that was brought to film, there is the report that sexual assaults are up by 6% right now, although anonymous claims went from 19,000 in the year of 2011 to 26,000 in 2012. so does that show you that there is still a deep culture of fear in terms of actual reporting these kinds of crimes and that because there is this culture that they continue to persist? >> well, in last year's statistics it was 19,000 kalss but only 3,500 actually
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reported. a huge gap there. of the 3,500 reported, only 240 were taken through trial and only a few resulted in convictions. it's a huge problem. and so we need better oversight. we need accountable 37 we need justice in these cases. and that's why i think it has to be taken away from the chain of command. >> senator, real quickly, before i let you go, you're reintroducing an lgbt adoption today, foster parenting by sup ls. what are the prospects of getting that through? >> the reality is every child in america deserves loving parents and we have 40,000 children in the foster care system across this country and 100,000 waiting to be adopted. every loving parent should have the ability to adopt these children so they can grow up in loving homes. study show what is a child needs most is a loving home and we should make sure that state can stop barring lgbt couples and
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single individuals from adopting these children. >> kirsten gillibrand, thanks for joining us. we'll let you get back to work. >> thank you. still ahead, chris christie dropping a bombshell on the media. he's undergone secret weight loss surgery. what does it mean for his re-election campaign and fast forward to 2016 and those prospects? we'll take a look. and mark sanford's bid for political redemption despite the scandal and being ditched at one time by his own party. can he pull off this comeback against the sister of steven kolber bare? with the spark cash card
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told you i'd get half. have hail damage to both their cars. ted ted is trying to get a hold of his insurance agent. maxwell is not. he's on setting up an appointment with an adjuster. ted is now on hold with his insurance company. maxwell is not and just confirmed a 5:30 time for tuesday. ted, is still waiting. yes! maxwell is out and about... with ted's now ex-girlfriend. wheeeee! whoo! later ted! online claims appointments. just a click away on the weight is over. chris christie admits he secretly underwent lap band surgery in february. joining me live from philadelphia is asbury park senior political analyst bob engle, the author of "chris
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christie mpt the inside story of his rise to power." g good to have you here. when he was on david letterman, he poked fun at himself, ate a doughnut. he peld a press conference, asked about losing the weight. he said, be assured there is a plan. whether it will be successful or not, you'll notice. are people noticing and is that why he copped to us? >> as a matter of fact, mike simons and i, the co-author of the book, were talking about it the other day. he seems to look a little slimmer than he used to. >> when we talk about him revealing this in "the new york post," the governor said i've struggled with this issue for 20 years. for me this is about turning 50 and wanting to be there for my children. for someone who's written about the governor, do you think that's the fact or do you think that that's just a consideration in the larger picture of possibly running for 2016 presidential ticket? >> i'll take him as ath his word he's concerned about his health and that he hears a lot from his
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family and other people, but it's a twofer for him. his political supporters can say look what the guy did, overcame a great obstacle he's been fighting his whole life. it works both ways. >> is it fair to judge him on this solely about the fact that he's doing something cosmetic as opposed to talking more about his leadership following superstorm sandy? he's got an lot of praise about that. is this going to be extra bonus points so to speak for him in the garden state? >> i think it will be. he think ls it's unfair to put so much emphasis on that and so do i, frankly. i think we ought to be looking at the other things that he has done and make judgments based on that because his weight situation certainly did not indicate that he was lazy or had no discipline. he has plenty of both. >> bob engle, great to have you on. thanks for your time. >> thank you. up next, the suspense-filled showdown in south carolina. who will prevail in the special
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election matchup between mark sanford around elizabeth colbert bush? before tori was taking her kids to lunch in her new volkswagen... before her passat had passed 30 different inspection tests, and before several thousand tennesseans discovered new jobs on volkswagen drive, their cfo and our banker met for lunch. together, we worked with a team that helped finance construction of the world's first leed platinum auto manufacturing plant. that's the impact of global connections. that's bank of america. lookin' good, flo! feelin' good! feelin' real good! [ engine revs ] boat protection people love. now, that's progressive. call or click today.
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i think that what we all know through life and i've heard a lot of these conversations, talking around with people through the district, is that now, we're all going to make mistakes in life. we all have feet of clay. but those events ultimately can become not definitional, but we can become a better person for it. >> that was former north carolina republican candidate mark sanford talking to the msnbc crew about his political comeback for the state's congressional seat. elizabeth colbert bush is running democrat blue and has spent her campaign hammering her opponent about his political implosion in 2009. go it was the fact that he left his post. he left without telling anybody where he was. it was about the job
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performance. is what it was about. and that's all it was about. we can forgive, but you don't forget. >> it's made for a fascinating contest. one "the wall street journal" is describing today as down to the wire. msnbc contributor and congressional guru jimmy williams is in charleston, south carolina, on more of why it matters to us. explain to us because we've seen a lot of these personal attacks, hard-core ad campaigns, debates with the cardboard cut-outs with nancy pelosi, a lot of drama. why is this election so special and who is looking better than the other one? >> i don't think the special election has any ramifications politically nationwide. it certainly does for south carolina, it certainly does for the low country of south carolina, obviously because this is their, their congressional district. but the problem is, is that it's actually sort of making a mockery of the state of south carolina and that i think is why you have so much people ginned up about this, especially us in the press. frankly, is this, does this change how people vote in the house?
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the majority in the house? none of that will actually matter. but it does make for a lot of fodder for us to sit around and talk about. you have a disgraced former governor, you have the sister of stephen colbert. both locals running hard, neck and neck. a district that's a solid republican district and colbert bush is holding her own and that's why we're intrigued. >> stanford has made a concerted effort to shape-shift into a more appealing candidate. listen to what he had to say on "morning joe" about guns and immigration. >> i'm a big second amendment person. and so you know, i mean the present bill would i guess manchin and toomey, i would have voted no. because i think you've got to dig down deep to define what a gun show is if it's a couple guys in a back of a pickup truck trading a gun, i don't know if that fits as a gun show. you've got to begin with enforcement before you get to amnesty. i would not support the bill in its present form. i do like what it does with regard to high-tech workers and i think we probably need to have
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more of a conversation on low-tech workers and against worker program. >> a lot more confidence, jimmy on party issues, if he does win, our chuck todd describes him as being the skunk at the garden party. how is his transformation going over with the gop base and how do you think he'll be accepted by speaker boehner? >> he was a thorn in the spea r speaker's side, not this speaker, but the one when he was a member of congress. he was a thorn then. he was as they called him, dr. no. he's not suggesting that he's going to change his ability to vote differently this time. so i think he will continue to be quote a thorn in people's side per se, but if that's his conscience, at least we know where he stands. and he's not going to vote along party lines, he is more of a tea party kind of a fellow. that was his record before and it will continue to probably be his record going forward and frankly to be honest with you, i think if colbert bush wins, she'll be a thorn in nancy
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pelosi's side, she'll not always vote with her leader. maybe they both could represent the district properly, if you will. we'll see what happens, we'll know tonight around 8:30, 9:00, is that your family crest on your jacket, jimmy, in south carolina, representing proud, huh? >> no, no, i'm on the college of charleston campus, i'm wearing my citadel crest, just to rub it in their face a little bit. >> as you would do, msnbc congressional contributor and guru, jimmy williams. that's going to wrap it up for me, "now" with alex wagner comes up next. sure that we were on schedule. the first technology of its kind... mom and dad, i have great news. is now providing answers families need. siemens. answers.
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center stage in the russian ballet performing the pas de, deux, it's john kerry and vladimir putin, it's tuesday, may 7th and this is "now." secretary kerry has landed in the kremlin. early this morning, amid the ongoing turmoil in syria and a
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standoff in the u.s., over whether to send body of boston marathon bomb suspect, tamerlan tsarnaev back to russia, secretary of state john kerry arrived in moscow. secretary kerry will have a full plate during his two-day trip. global terrorism, iran, afghanistan, trade concerns and north korea. but his larger goal is to convince russia to change its position on the escalating conflict in syria and to increase counterterrorism cooperation between the two countries in the wake of the tragedy at the boston marathon. negotiation with russia has proved difficult in the past. but this morning, kerry indicated that the path ahead may be more cooperative than combative. telling putin that president obama believes the u.s. and russia are capable of cooperating on syria, iran, north korea and economic issues. to describe recent relations between the u.s. and russia as frosty. would be something of an understatement. just last month, the two countries were engaged in a tit