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tv   Weekends With Alex Witt  MSNBC  August 4, 2013 9:00am-11:01am PDT

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worldwide travel alert on a day when u.s. embassies overseas are shut down. heightened security at airports here and abroad. the big question, how serious is this latest terror threat to the homeland? nightmare on the boardwalk. a car plows through crowds, vendor, the young and the old in a seemingly intentional attack on the west coast. we will hear from a witness. climate change. a new report suggests it's causing something around the
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world you might never have expected. google glass experiment. what happens when you spend days walking through the halls of congress with the latest technology, a lot. hello, everyone. it is high noon in the east. welcome to "weekends with alex witt." we have developing now at this hour, 22 u.s. embassies and consulates in 17 countries all closed today amid one of the most serious terror warnings in years. most of those are in the middle east and north africa much the state department has issued a worldwide travel alert for americans, it's the first since osama bin laden was killed. it warns terrorists may elect to use a variety of means and weapons and target both official and private interests. that warning in effect through august. security is also being increased across the u.s. out of what authorities are calling an abundance of caution although they say there is no specific threat to the homeland and joint chiefs of staff general martin dempsey says the threat is specific and serious.
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>> a significant threat stream and we're reacting to it. >> is the threat to employee up an embassy, a consulate or something else? >> that part of it is unspecified, but the intent seems clear. the intent is to attack western, not just u.s. interests. >> now, the focus is on the al qaeda branch in yemen where experts say the terror group is on the rise. we have complete coverage for you. nbc's kristen well kearse at the white house and nbc news foreign news correspondent richard engel is in cairo. what's the latest there. >> reporter: i'm still struck by that map you showed. so much yellow. this is an unbelievable crackdown that is taking place, the embassy here and in so many countries closed down, consulates, as well, about 22 of them. here in cairo today, nothing special, the embassy just had security personnel. we have learned a little bit more talking to sources about this specific terror threat. it does go back to yemen.
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it goes back to al qaeda in the arabian peninsula, which is the al qaeda group based in yemen and in saudi arabia. and we were told that the threat is specifically both in timing, the timing around now and in location focused on yemen. but because of developments recently within al qaeda in the arabian peninsula the threat was expanded to other embassies, other consulates and this global travel alert. what has happened is midlast month, the deputy commander of al qaeda in the arabian peninsula was killed in a drone attack so that group, which is very aggressive, very organized, is particularly angry right now looking for revenge. they also have a new leader who is a man named nasir al wuhayshi. at one stage he was a deputy to osama bin laden and may be wanting to prove himself and when you have an angry capable group with a new, ambitious leader i think that spells
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trouble and the united states took this broad action closing the consulates and embassies and issuing this terror alert. there are some people, however, in the state department, some in the intelligence and counterterrorism communes who think that this is something of an exaggeration that you are giving small groups like this too much credit and you are giving them almost a victory by having so many people be afraid, reacting just on the basis of intelligence. it's not a good time to be a u.s. diplomat in the muslim world today. with u.s. embassies shuttered, 22 of them from kabul to cairo and beyond. it's the first time a general alert this sweeping has been issued since the u.s. braced for retaliation after americans' special operations killed osama bin laden two years ago. this time multiple sources tell nbc news the threat originates from yemen from a plot by al qaeda's branch in the arabe yan
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peninsula. the suspected target or targets are not just american diplomats in embassies but western interests in general. we're told the threat is credible, serious and timed for now. the tail end of ramadan. the targets' location is also believed to be in yemen but some u.s. officials worried plotters could try to strike beyond that country and initiate it, a blanket catch-all response. >> this is undoubtedly a serious threat but should be also hotted in what happened in benghazi officials are taking no chances whatsoever so a similar threat six months ago might not see the same reaction we see today. >> reporter: so why al qaeda in yemen? it has a core group of skilled bombmakers and propagandists who operate in areas where the government has little authority. the group is motivated and aggressive. it's also under attack. last month one of its top leaders, hasayyed was killed.
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they want revenge but where? several counterterrorism officials also point to benghazi for this abundance of caution that is being taken. yes, it is serious. yes, al qaeda in the arabian peninsula is dangerous. they have new leadership but after the reaction and the blowback that came to the state department and the white house, after benghazi, it seems that the u.s. is, well, certainly not taking any chances. >> okay. thank you very much, richard engel in cairo for that comprehensive report. let's move now to the white house as kristen, we've learned more about what is and what is not known about these threats this morning that came from senate intelligence committee vice chairman sax by chambliss who appeared on "meet the press." let's take a listen. >> obviously we don't know where the location is. that's part of the problem. but what we have heard is some specifics on what's intended to be done and some individuals who
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are making plans such as we saw before 9/11, whether they're going to be suicide vests that are used or whether they're planning on vehicle-borne bombs being carried into an area, we don't know. >> nbc's kristen welker now joining us from the white house. kristen, i know there's a series of ongoing national security meetings and the president has been briefed. correct? [ no audio ] unfortunately we're having a little bit of audio issues, clearly we will he see if we can get that remedied and bring her back to you to give us a report on the white house. meantime, peter king of new york is a member of the house homeland security and intelligence committees and he joins me now by phone. representative king, thank you for joining me. >> you're welcome, alex. thank you. > do any of these intercepted theys suggest an attack on the u.s. homeland is imminent, sir?
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>> alex, the ones we have do not say where the attack will occur. i think we have to be ready here in the united states in the homeland as well as in europe. as general dempsey said it's against u.s. and our allies and there's no specific site. obviously most of the attention is focused in the middle east but we have to be on guard throughout the world which is why local and state governments have been advised throughout our country to this threat. >> you have said that there was specific intelligence and, quote, also very specific as to the fact it is going to happen, so, sir, is it now a question of not if but when? >> well, based on the intelligence, it's a question of when. because they were very specific as to how extensive they wanted it to be. it will be a major attack or maybe series of attacks, and it also was somewhat specific
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regarding dates. i can't go any further than that. now, if for some reason the attack doesn't happen, it could be because of the action we've taken has, you know, caused them to delay it or postpone it but the intelligence is very specific that it will be a very lethal attack and it also was fairly specific as to time. >> representative king, "the new york times" reporting these w n warnings come from electronic intercepts from, quote, senior operatives of al qaeda in which terrorists discussed attacks against american interests in the middle east and north africa. why is this so different than in the past? representative king, can you hear me? >> i believe we've lost that signal, as well. unfortunately we got a few things to get that and get that back for you when we can. two stories from the west coast. a deadly crash at a famed california tourist destination when a car plowed through a
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crowded boardwalk on venice beach killing one and injuring 11 others. a security camera caught the driver get in his car, he hit the gas, striking several vendors and beachgoers before fleeing the scene. >> everybody was just hanging out and then the car came and crashed into everybody, and all the setups and hit everybody on the beach. it hit my grandmother. it hit everyone. >> all i saw was a crowd emerging from the crowd driving southbound on the boardwalk just plowing through whomever was in its way. >> the scene was really bad. there were people everywhere. blood everywhere. there were scattered stuff. >> well, a man fitting the description of the driver later turned himself in and is now being questioned by police. elsewhere in california, several people are recovering after a demolition goes terribly wrong. shrapnel from this controlled implosion went flying into spectators which had gathered to witness the event. though behind a police barricade set up at what was considered a safe perimeter.
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>> out here watching the explosion like everybody and i caught a piece of shrapnel just below my knee. it's inside my leg right here. >> in fact, police say another man lost one leg and could possibly lose his other one. authorities are determining rather investigating to try to figure out what went wrong. a-rod talks again about his future with the yankees and what leaves some asking, is he kidding himself? at scottrade, or clients trade and invest exactly how they want. with scottrade's online banking, i get one view of my bank and brokerage accounts with one login... to easily move my money when i need to. plus, when i call my local scottrade office, i can talk to someone who knows how i trade. because i don't trade like everybody. i trade like me. i'm with scottrade. (announcer) scottrade. awarded five-stars from smartmoney magazine.
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glad to say we are rejoined by representative peter king. we had some technical issues but he's back on the phone with us. so, sir, with regard to this terror alert out there, what makes this different than things we have heard before and acted upon in terms of raising terror alert levels? what is it that has everybody on such high alert? >> alex, except for the 2006
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explosive attacks involved, this is the most specific intelligence i've seen as far as what they intend to do, as far as the dates in which they intend to do it and it's extremely reliable, the sources we're getting it from, so a combination of the sources we're getting it from, how specific it is and also the extent of the type of attack they're talking about makes this the most serious actual intelligence we've had, much more than benghazi, much more than really any attack i -- or attempted plot i can think of in at least the last six or seven years. >> representative king, these sources, i know that we have heard the chatter, what it's called and that's been monitored. is there human intelligence that's offering this, as well? >> alex, i really can't go into the sources other than to say they're extremely reliable and extremely specific as to the
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extent of the attack and the approximate times of the attack. >> okay. one thing that you have said and i believe it was said just earlier this morning on a different network, you're cowing this a wake-up call, sir. you say al qaeda is in many ways stronger than it was before 9/11 because it is mutated and it's spread and it can come at us from different directions. there are those who would suggest in the terrorism analyst world, if you will, that al qaeda is not capable of pulling off something akin to 9/11 these days. do you agree with that or not? >> it would be more typical for them to carry out the one massive attack but it's also much more difficult for us to locate them and know where they're coming from and so they can carry out very significant attacks and it would be very hard for us to stop them. knowing what we know now we could have stopped 9/11 most likely but it's much more difficult today, and even though it may not be the 3,000 people killed on 9/11, they could cause
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quite a bit of carnage and if they could get in their hands any type of nuclear device or dirty bomb they certainly could but the point i was making it's much more spread out and have someone like al qaeda -- i'm sorry, al qaeda in the arabian peninsula, aqap working on implanting bombs in people's body, we could have very significant -- just not small amounts of people, not 3,000 like 9/11 but still very large. >> with regard to the timing we've been looking to today, august 4th as being the day something would happen. here we are now into the afternoon east coast time even further into the day overseas where the heightened security really is. is nothing happens today how long do we keep our guard up at this level and do we have to maintain it here in the states, as well? >> it really depends what the intelligence shows. this is being monitored so
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carefully by every intelligence agency, all the leads we have working closely with our allies and we will be getting hopefully an analysis of what happened, why it happened, why it didn't happen and how we will tread. this is very seldom black and white answers. as definitive as any there was a real attack planned. if for some reason it doesn't happen we'll have to determine why it hasn't happened. has it been called off, delayed or a subterfuge to lull us into a false sense of security and then carry it out several days from now. it's an inact science. our government and our allies trying to do the best we can but this will have to be played on a day-to-day basis. >> representative peter king of new york, thanks for phoning us twice. to iran where the country is celebrating the first official day of its new presidency. mod dare cleric rowhani was
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sworn in and they're quoting the new president as saying the u.s. is looking for an excuse to confront tehran over its nuclear program. nbc's ann curry attended today's inauguration. she has more on what washington expects from the top man. >> reporter: today's inauguration of the new president is signaling a cautious hope for change. not just for the people of iran, but also for negotiations over iran's nuclear program. the new president replacing mahmoud ahmadinejad is hassan rouhani. already suggested reforms including freeing up the internet access and also eliminating the segregation of women and he was warmly endorsed by the supreme leader on saturday when both men said the way forward for iran is through moderation, not extremism. but the real question is will this new president mean that iran with its economy withering under tough international
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sanctions be more willing to negotiate giving up some of its nuclear am bigs? that is the change the u.s. will be looking for. now back to you. >> all right, nbc's ann curry, thanks so much. seeing congress through the eyes of google glass here from an nbc news producer about what it was like to wear them in the hallowed halls. and 900 million dollars are changing hands online. that's why the internet needs a new kind of server. one that's 80% smaller. uses 89% less energy. and costs 77% less. it's called hp moonshot. and it's giving the internet the room it needs to grow. this going to be big. it's time to build a better enterprise. together. a regular guy with an irregular heartbeat. the usual, bob? not today. [ male announcer ] bob has afib: atrial fibrillation not caused by a heart valve problem,
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baseball commissioner bud selig for the remainder of the 2013 season and likely the entire 2014 season. in connection with the league's investigation of performance-enhancing drugs and other players. the announcement is scheduled for monday. sources also say major league baseball officials were angered by his comments friday night indicating that he would not negotiate even as his team of representatives worked behind the scenes to reach a settlement. >> i feel great. >> reporter: after another minor league game last night in trenton, new jersey, a-rod said he was unaware of the commissioner's reported ruling. >> i haven't heard anything. my focus has been to play baseball. >> reporter: later the yankee slugger said he continued to continue with plans for a sunday workout and flight to chicago where the yankees to set to play the white sox on monday. >> will you stay fly to chicago? >> yeah, i'm flying to chicago. >> whether or not -- >> i'm flying to chicago.
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>> reporter: if the lengthy suspension survives a challenge it will cost a-rod an estimated $35 million in salary and also possibly end the career of the sport's richest yet one of its most controversial figures. according to reports major league baseball is also set to announce sanctions against a number of other players on monday, as well, alex. >> okay, ron, can i ask you, so a-rod has said he plans to fly to chicago. he wants to join his teammates. he misses his brothers. he said that and you brought that quote to us. if he gets there and he's suspended does he get banned from the locker roomy is he locked out? do we know? >> reporter: we don't know. now, boss costas is reporting that alex rodriguez is simply going to be suspended on both fronts. both with the drug policy with the players union and major league baseball but also with the collective bargaining agreement, bigger, broader document that gives the commissioner a lot more latitude about handing down safrngss against players and so they say they've got a lot of evidence against alex rodriguez here and if the commissioner spells that
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out in his notice to alex rodriguez and his representatives, he very well may say he wants him barred from the yankees clubhouse and facilities during game days but the whole point is he wants to perhaps keep him off the field tomorrow. alex rodriguez said last night he is going to chicago no matter what happens today or perhaps what happens tomorrow, he plans on being in that clubhouse in co-men ski park. >> ron, thanks for that. the weather, colorado residents are addressing the damage left in the wake of tornadoes and heavy rain that hit that state yesterday. the extreme weather brought on golf ball-sized hail and major flooding in some areas. will it continue? to the lady who always has the answers. dylan dyer has it. >> we will see some dronger storms. no slight risk of severe weather. tomorrow across the northern plains but colorado area should be okay for today. look at temperatures, though. 67 degrees right now in minneapolis. yet it's 91 in dallas so you can
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see there is that frontal boundary dividing the cold air from the warm air and also along that frontal boundary is where we have most of the rain now, southeastern kansas to southern missouri and arkansas. it was heavy earlier and it's lightening up but we're expecting another couple of inches in missouri and arkansas where since friday into saturday we already had some spots pick up 6 inches of rain so naturally the ground is saturated and because of that flood warnings are in effect up and down the mississippi river. flash flooding for some of the heavier downpours we're seeing right now. it's a lot about temperatures too, 73 for a high in chicago where the normal high is 83 degrees. we're well into the 100s in parts of texas that will stay the case tomorrow and it'll stay pretty chilly in chicago, 74 degrees with some late day thunderstorms but in the northeast we are starting off a stretch of low humidity, temperatures right around 80 degrees so some areas lucking out with the weather. >> okay, for which we thank you very much, dylan dreyer.
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>> no one landed the prize in the powerball drawing. it's going to a whopping $400 million. and in today's number ones, the states that spend top dollar on lottery tickets. massachusetts leads the way according to a study last year, average spending, 860 bucks a year per person. georgia second with spending $470. $20 less than third place new york and also beer, let's talk about that coming out on top in a new gallup survey as america's favorite alcoholic beverage. 36% prefer beer. 35% prefer wine and 23% go for hard liquor. >> i told you i didn't like him, man. >> shut up. >> why are you getting mad at me. >> you talk too much. >> "2 guns" is projected to win the weekend with a haul of about $28 million.
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woody allen has a new picture out "blue jasmine." it will have to go a long way to outgrossing "2 guns." "midnight in paris" did well but some adjusting -- >> what did you do? >> i'm in a bad mood. >> i'm standing with the cast of "the godfather." >> you'll have to learn to deal with this. >> that's "annie hall" earning $38 million in 1977 but in today's dollars, that's 140 million. that's 8 million more than "manhattan" in '79 and 50 million more than "hannah and her sisters." those are your number ones on "weekends with alex witt." let me show you something. ok. walmart has a bunch of tasty lunches. i see. ok this one is less than $1.50 per serving. i like that. yeah. if you switched out fast-food lunches just twice a week you know you can save over $470.00 bucks a year.
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welcome back to "weekends with alex witt." let's get the headlines at the half as rescuers resumed a search for a missing snowboarder on oregon's ft. hood. the man traveling with five companions saturday when an ice
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tunnel collapsed on him. labor talks aimed at avoiding a transit strike resumed in san francisco. bay area rapid transit workers threatened to walk off the job early monday if they don't get a new contract. employees shut down train service for four days in early july. "newsweek" has a new owner. it has been bought by the digital just company international business times for an undisclosed amount. "newsweek" stopped publishing a print edition in 2012 and is all digital. we continue to follow the developing news. 22 u.s. embassies and consulates shut down in 17 muslim nations in the face of one of the most serious terror threats in years. a worldwide travel alert for americans is also in effect and security has been increased at airports and high-profile locations here across the u.s. at dulles airport in virginia today we found one man who's worried about where his wife and two young children are traveling. >> i'm really worried because my wife is going to saudi arabia so i'm really worried.
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they are traveling. i'm not traveling. i'm really worried but i see more crowds. normally sunday is a little less. permanently i'm relieve sfwld joining me evan kohlmann and, evan, with a welcome as you listen to that man does he have good reason to be worried. >> saudi arabia is a unique instance. if you look at the actions taken by the united kingdom and france, that's more instructive about where the threat really is. they've closed their embassies in yemen and i think that's really where the focus is. it's possible it may reach out as far as north africa or saudi arabia or elsewhere but i think if you're looking at what the real concern is, i don't think it's so much the continental united states, it's more about the middle east. more about closer to the heartland, the territory that aqap controls. >> we don't have access to the classified information but you make that point that england, france closing their embassies in yemen. does that tell you something about what is likely to have
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been heard on the chatter or with intelligence? >> i think it provides additional information that supports the idea that the threat is, quote/unquote emanating from yemen. aqap has been beating on the drum suggesting there should be attacks on embassies across the middle east suggests this is a great idea and in the last week we've seen a flurry of u.s. drone strikes in yemen supposedly according to the news out within the last 24 hours, one of those drone strikes might have targeted the number two or number three man in al qaeda in yemen, a former gitmo detainee so obviously the u.s. government seems to be taking this seriously and the people they're going after are big fish and if they're going after them in this way i think it's fair to say they think there is some plot under way, whether or not it actually, you know, takes place is another question entirely. >> so aqap would no doubt like to hit us here in the homeland. anything that tells you about
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what you know that they are capable of doing it. >> sure. they've almost achieved that before. you had one person who got on board an airliner bound for the united states with a bomb in his underwear and the only thing that stopped him was a flying dutchman was a guy flying across three seats of airplane, so i think the reality is we know these folks are capable of that and we know they have the intent of doing that and there are even reports now they've been so successful at targeting the united states they're receiving a promotion from al qaeda central and their leaders are going to be the new generation of al qaeda's top leadership. so if this is the case, i mean, yeah, again, you know, it's always possible they could strike the u.s., but this particular threat seems focused on yemen. >> and their success may come in part because they're using new techniques which would include having the technology to surgically implant into people bombs or explosives of some sort that would be undetectable with our current technology. >> this is what aqap -- what makes aqap different from other
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al qaeda factions. they've pushed the boundaries in terms of developing weapons they think they can sneak through u.s. security and they have in their arsenal people like ibrahim al asiri who built the bomb, the underwear bomb and built the cargo plot bomb and he's still there and still come up with ways to get around u.s. security. this is a bit unusual. it's a bit rare. there aren't that many al qaeda factions that have that kind of in-house capability and that's unfortunately what makes them such a threat to the united states. not just abroad but here. >> you know what, as i ask representative peter king 10 or 15 minutes ago, if nothing happens today and look at the clock right now getting close to 1:00 here and time is waning where we think is the focus of thing, how long do we stay on this level of alert. >> look, i wouldn't hold your breath. nothing may end up happening. maybe likely nothing will end up happening, unfortunately, the threat does not begin and end today. it goes to the end of the month and honestly al qaeda doesn't
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operate on any particular time line. they could just shift their operational tempo and move it to next month. i think the point, more importantly, is that al qaeda and yemen continues to target the united states actively. the threats are serious enough to generate a global terror alert. i think what that tells us is is that the problem of al qaeda in yemen is not one that's gone away and it's something we have to pay attention to very close attention to even despite the progress we've maid. >> evan kohlmann, thanks. in today's "office politics" former nypd and boston police commissioner as well as chief of the lapd bill bratton, i asked him to share some of the policies he found pose effective starting with broken windows. >> was based on an experiment in palo alto where a new car was placed into a very distressed neighborhood and nothing happened to it but once they broke a window on the car with a very short period of time 9 car was incredibly vandalized and it
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led to the understanding that if the criminal element sees that something is not being taken care of they'll take advantage of that absence of control of authority. think of it as weeding a garden, the idea if you don't weed your garden the weeds will kill even the strongest tree and certainly the flowers and police say broken windows can be described as things that affect a neighborhood that are not necessarily crimes against an individual but basically destroy neighborhoods such as graffiti, abandoned vehicles, trash that is not picked up, prostitution that's not dealt with, gangs hanging on and drug dealing, it begins to escalate if you don't care of the little things, it's like a cancer you detect on your skin, basal cell, they do a biopsy, uh-oh, you better go take care of it. is it going to be surgically taken out. can we do radiation, chemotherapy and even after it's gone the doctor wants to see you every six months because he wants to detect it early.
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broken windows is detecting things early to stop them. >> comp stat, describe that. >> so comp stat has four elements. timely active intelligence, gather it as fast as you can, with computerization we can gather it instantly, rapidly respond to it so before the ten incidents there's only two or three, effective tactic, what's going to work, uniform, plainclothes, task forces working with the fbi, for example, and then lastly follow-up like a doctor after he's cured your cancer he wants you coming back to make sure it's not coming back. what police did not do well after we made an arrest, we didn't do a good job with follow-up oftentimes and keeping track of what people are up to so compstat as simple as it sounds is revolutionary in american policing, very quickly spread through the united states so most police departments today do some version of compstat. >> there are some rumors out there you would consider a position as new york police commissioner again. any truth to those. >> well, i'm very fortunate in
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my life where i am at the moment. my name pops up from time to time for different positions and always nice to be thought about for a position you haven't been offered and as to whether there's an interest on my part i'd have to wait and see, one, is it offered and, two, what am i doing with my life at that particular point in time. so, again, it's nice to be in a position where there's always another door to open. >> all right. which brings me to the question, boston, new york or l.a. i want your favorite. >> no, i get to travel to great cities, and london with some frequency and each city is a favorite for me for different reasons, new york is where i want to call home, though, because it is a special energy and dynamic here. very different city than london and certainly boston or l.a. >> red sox, yankees or dodgers? >> well, that's an easy one. when you're born in boston, you are inoculated with red sox fever. it's like malaria.
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you have it for the rest of your life. it might go in remission. in my case i also root for the home team so in terms of here we are in new york, but there's always that pull to boston that recently had the opportunity to get -- go to a red sox game up in boston and the owner's box which was a special thrill, but the boxes are wonderful but there's still nothing like being down on the third base line or the first base line and a couple of years ago my dad's 85th birthday had him into fenway park right behind the dugout behind first base and it's a special place. my son david who is the proud father of these two young kids, david used to sell hot dogs in fenway park up and down the stairs. >> you ought to hit up mike barnicle for his tickets. >> mike was sitting behind me when i had my dad there. >> nice. >> commissioner bratton's newest company, bratton technologies is launching what is essentially facebook for cops in october.
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that will be unveiled in philadelphia at the international association chiefs of police conference. climate change, is it affecting the world in ways you may never have imagined? the results of a new study next. . 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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triggered by climate change lead to a more violent future? a new study published in "science" magazine seems to think so pointing to a higher correlation between higher temperatures and increased aggression. the huffington post joins us. ladies, welcome. this is interesting because coral, as this planet is getting hotter, does this mean we people will be more violent? what's your take on this? >> alex, this is an issue that the pentagon, the cia and the state department have been monitoring closely for several years. there are a lot of studies that show that climate change is what
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the pentagon and cia call a threat multiplier for violence, for conflict, even for war. if you have a situation, we've seen this in sudan and in the middle east where you've already got political unrest, ethic tensions, economic unease and you add on top of that an extreme drought, food and water shortages, huge increases in the price of food, that can be -- and those are events that are triggered by climate change, those can be the kinds of things that ago as the final spark that triggers -- that takes political unrest and ethnic tension into violence and this is an issue that's been on the radar certainly of military agencies around the world for awhile. >> okay. excessive heat, floods, things like that, sure, we can understand that makes people extra cranky. throw in extra humidity and i'll be cranky but the study
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technically, how does it back it up? >> the study is really interesting because it takes data going back for many, many years, it takes data from around the world and sort of really shows quantitatively that increases in temperature, increases in drought are dire directdirect ly affiliated with increases in violence of all kinds. >> yeah. >> you know, we've seen it not just with political unrest and political violence but also as you say increases in temperature in cities will lead to increased domestic violence. very comprehensive. >> you know, it's an interesting study that, robin, you have highlighted an alarming section of the study in the article you wrote for "the huffington post" which says "we found that a one standard deviation shift causes the likelihood of personal violence to rise 4% and intergroup conflict to rise 14%. so you're saying a temperature
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spike of just two degrees on average could increase the likelihood of civil wars by 50%. can you break that down? >> right, and, alex, the study wasn't necessarily saying that that would lead to that. it's saying that if trends continue as they have been in the past that that kind of a warming could cause that kind of an increase in violence. >> okay. it also talks about, though, droughts and floods and tying that to human conflict. is that a fair assessment, robin? >> right, and i think coral hit the nail on the head when she was talking about that kind of being that final spark. when you already have climate affecting things like farming, agriculture, crops, kind of the economics and that starts brewing, then when you have that rise in temperature on top of that that's when we really have that stronger spike, especially in intergroup violence. for instance, in the research they looked at 27 different modern societies and found that in all 27 cases, there was a positive correlation between just a small rise in temperature
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and civil wars and intergroup violence and they were saying that that's incredibly unusual that that's like flipping a coin and i'm getting heads 27 times in a row which is quite alarming. >> yeah, but, robin, you said in your article that an increase on average of 2 degrees celsius is likely to happen around the world by 2014 -- rather 2040. >> 2040, right. >> 25, 26 years from now. i mean then we're all going to go and get angrier. >> the one kind of ray of hope in that figure is that what they didn't necessarily look at was the gradual increase over time. so that is quite a few years from now that several decades, so it's not necessarily saying that over time that that would happen, that 50% increase, right now it looks at if, say, tomorrow there was a 2% increase, then that would be more likely. now, they didn't say that would not happen but something they haven't considered yet which is definitely a study i think they'll look into going forward. >> absolutely fascinate. robin wilkey and coral
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davenport. >> thank you. through the google glass, a producer takes us through the halls of congress using the latest technology with some mixed reaction. you may be muddling through allergies. try zyrtec-d®. powerful relief of nasal congestion and other allergy symptoms -- all in one pill. zyrtec-d®. at the pharmacy counter.
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congress like you've never seen it before through the eyes of google glass. google glass is the newly released head mounted computer worn like glasses and producer frank thorp has been wearing the device all around capitol hill this past week covering congress from this unique perspective. there you see the president, in fact, as he's taking pictures and videos, leaving his meeting with house democrats on wednesday. joining me now is nbc news capitol hill producer frank thorp who wore the glasses and there you have them. this is kind of fun. i'm loving it. talk about first nancy pelosi. you covered the weekly press briefing. she took notice and she asked you when you were asking about immigration reform, here's her question, let's listen.
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>> i'll answer that if you tell us about your glasses. [ laughter ] >> they're google glasses. >> i see that. but i mean what we're doing with them right now, are we filming this. >> it's being filmed by those cameras, as well. >> no, it's good. >> all right. so what were the reactions in general from wearing google glass. >> i think that interaction is kind of telling us how they've been handled on capitol hill. people have been reacting with a little bit of intrigue but also healthy skepticism. if i had a dollar for every time somebody came up to me and said are you recording me i'd have a lot of dollars, so i think that, you know, people are really interested in the technology and i think that it's a really interesting way to kind of capture a first person view of what it's like to cover capitol hill, but i think that also people are a little skeptical of a new technology especially a technology that could be recording you and you have no idea if it's doing it or not. >> first how did you get the glasses, frank?
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how exactly do they work and we should tell people, we were talking at the commercial break and you said your right eye where the camera is got a little affected by this. >> yeah, so nbc got the glasses and they let me use them for a week to kind of as a test drive to see what it was like to have somebody covering a beat with the glasses on. you know, it's been good but at the same time like you said, you know, if you -- what you do is you press the button here and a little screen pops up right in front of your eye and looking that close at the screen is actually kind of -- it's distracting but it's also a little bit straining to my eye so i've had to take it off and take breaks and things like that and also just take it off. there's certain parts of the capitol they won't let me wear them so it's been a definitely interesting experience. >> we heard pelosi's reaction. how about john boehner, what was his reaction? >> well, boehner -- speaker boehner is a little more old
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school and he actually would not call on me when i went to the weekly press conference. >> really. >> while i was wearing them. yeah, he actually was choosing people that were sitting next to me that didn't even have their hand up to ask a question instead of me and i went up to him afterwards. i said what was it about the glasses. would you have called on me without them and he's like probably, yeah. he's just an old-school kind of guy. that's one of the negative consequences that i think, you know, the capitol is very slow to acquiesce to new technology. some places you can't even have your cell phone in places so i think it'll take some time but eventually people will warm up to the idea of people wearing these. >> all right, well, our cutting-edge nbc news capitol producer frank thorp, thanks. more than 20 embassies and consulates are shut down. how real is the danger? this i. to prove to you that aleve is the better choice for him, he's agreed to give it up. that's today?
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america on alert. beefed up airport security across the country. the white house holds top-level security meetings. more than 20 u.s. embassies and consulates in the middle east and africa shut down today amid the threat of terror. but why today and how real is the threat? live reports and analysis straight ahead. out of nowhere. a speeding car hits at least a dozen people killing one on california's crowded venice beach boardwalk. and in suspense, the d-day facing a-rod and other baseball's accused cheats but a-rod can avoid getting thrown out? hello, everyone, welcome to "weekends with alex witt." just past 1:00 p.m. in the east. 10 p. 10:00 a.m. in the west. the closing of nearly two dozen u.s. embassies overseas because of a serious terror threat. here's what we've learned today from different official sources. it is the type of terrorist chatter picked up before 9/11. nbc's andrea mitchell reports
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that airports overseas are increasing passenger screening for planes coming to the united states and at least one congressman, peter king of new york, with whom we just spoke says the threat is not necessarily exclusive to an overseas target. the homeland could be at risk. well, here's how michael mccall of texas. >> probably one of the most specific and credible threats i've seen perhaps since 9/11 and that's why everybody is taking this so seriously. in fact because of the specificity, because of where it's coming from. the credibility of it, the level of chatter, it seems to be a fairly large operation. >> focus is on the al qaeda branch in yemen where experts say the terror group is on the rise. nbc's kristen welker is at the white house. kristen, the president has been getting constant updates on this no doubt him being at camp david. >> reporter: that's right. he has been getting regular updates. he is at camp david celebrating
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his 52nd birthday. before he left yesterday he was briefed at least twice, once in the morning and then once later in the day after a meeting of his principals, of his intelligence committee so let me just read a couple of the names that were at that meeting. white house chief of staff denis mcdonough, national security adviser susan rice, secretary of state john kerry, secretary of defense, chuck hagel, chairman of the joint chiefs of staff martin dempsey so a lot of people at that meeting sat down to assess the latest information and the risk and then after that, the president was briefed by susan rice and lisa monaco. i expect there to be more briefings and meetings that occur today. president obama due back a little bit later on this afternoon. but, alex, one of the reasons that lawmakers are so concerned, you heard them talk about it, the threat is specific, it is credible. u.s. officials telling me they are bracing for what could be a large attack that has been planned. take a listen to what one lawmaker had to say this morning.
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>> obviously we don't know where the location is. that's part of the problem, but what we have heard is some specifics on on what's intended to be done and some individuals who are making plans such as we saw before 9/11. whether they're going to be suicide vests that are going to be used or whether they're planning on vehicle-borne bombs being carried into an area, we don't know. >> now that was saxby chambliss on "meet the press." other u.s. officials tell us this intelligence is coming from stepped-up chatter and other sources of information, as well, alex and really it's not just specific to u.s. interests. it's really a target against the wider western world, so we know that france, britain, germany have all closed their embassies temporarily in yemen and yemen
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does seem to be where u.s. officials have their sights trained right now. they believe that that is where the threat is coming from and where the threat could occur, but, again, they are bracing for what they believe was planned to be a large attack so really taking every precaution particularly in the wake of the attack against the u.s. consulate in benghazi on september 11th which occurred about a year ago. we're apreching the one-year anniversary. alex. >> i'm curious with regard to today. the specific threat was targeted for august 4th and yet we have a travel advisory issued by the state department for the entire month. anything coming from the white house that says if nothing happens today, in terms of some sort of attack, we are going to extend this heightened alert and keep embassies and consulates closed an the world? >> reporter: oh, absolutely. that is one of the things that state department officials, white house officials will be talking about today when they meet. some lawmakers have made the point that because there has been such a robust response to
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this latest intelligence, that whatever may have been planned might be delayed. so you're absolutely right. they are considering potentially keeping the embassies closed beyond today so that is one of the things that they will be discussing. remember, ramadan, the period right now is a highly charged period for the muslim world, but this month also marks a number of anniversaries of past terrorist attacks including the 15th anniversary of the attack against the embassy in dar es salaam which occurred 15 years ago. alex. >> okay, kristen welker at the white house, many thanks. joining me now democratic congressman adam schiff of california, a member of the house permanent collect committee on intelligence and joins me from burbank studios. always good to see you. thank you so much for being here. let's talk about this very specific threat. as we have been told there are suggestions that a team has been selected to carry out whatever is planned for today. what do you know about that,
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sir? >> well, i can't go into the specifics but, you know, i think we can infer from what you've heard already that we know more about the when, that is focused on today than we do about the wherewithal 21 embassies now being shut down but i think kristen was exactly right, not only are we reacting but our adversaries will react to, there's a source of information about what they've been planning and figuring out whether they ought to change the timing, move to a different target, that's why there's such a breath of the warning going out but it also means that we may have to have the closures last longer than anticipated. it will probably be some time before we can clear the decks and say, okay it's okay to go back to business. part of that will depend on ow good our intelligence is and whether those sources dry up. hopefully we haven't tipped our hand so much that the sources of information no longer can be utilized to determine what the continuing threat may be.
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>> so as you heard me asking kristen, i asked this of one of your colleagues from across the aisle, representative peter king earlier, if nothing happens today, it's after 1:00 p.m. here in the east, it's certainly later than that in the mideast, how long do you expect we will keep this heightened alert up? i mean, the travel alert is one thing, sir. that goes for the entire month of august from the state department. but this rather heightened alert. will you keep our embassies and consulates closed? how long does that last? >> well, it will probably depend on what we can learn and what we are learning right now from our intelligence sources. if those sources tell us that they have adjusted by postponing indefinitely the attacks, then we'll probably step down. if they're going forward and basically the trigger has been pulled and too late to delay or defer we'll maintain the state of alert and see what takes place and respond and we've already repositioned our troops since the benghazi attacks to be more capable of moving more
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quickly to the region, so it really will depend on what comes in, hopefully this will defer, you know, indefinitely what al qaeda was planning. it may also give us the opportunity to remove some of those key players from the battlefield or further disrupt their operations, but at this point we won't know until the intelligence comes in. >> is there a sense this might have been today an attack on multiple targets or just one target and is it all overseas or is there a chance there's something domestically? >> well, i think, you know, part of it is you may get chatter on a specific target and a specific date, or it may be that you have a concern overriding that. here you have these prison breaks now in three different countries of large numbers of al qaeda. you have the significance of the end of ramadan. you have the fact that if you look back just a year ago, what may have started at one or two embassies spread throughout the muslim world.
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we had attacks on more than a dozen of our embassies and consulates, so it probably is a variety of factors that's causing the broad shutdown of our embassies and obviously we'll want to prevent anything from taking place like happened just about exactly a year ago. >> some other rather sobering comments i want to pass on to or by you. senator chambliss on "meet the press" saying this is the kind of chatter we heard before, 9/11. is that how you would characterize it based on what you know. >> you know, i'm not sure if i can compare it to 9/11, but certainly you don't get briefed as the president twice in a single day on a plot unless it's of a sufficient seriousness. so all, you know, the facts that we could see publicly i think indicate the belief that we have in the intelligence, it's either from very good sources, sources or it's been corroborated in multiple ways, and the scope of the potential attacks is
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significant enough that we're taking all these precautions, it's hard to compare anything to 9/11 and i think we have so seriously diminished the capability of the core of al qaeda to pull something like that off again that we may be looking more at something that aqap has the capability of doing. they've already shown they have some of the most sophisticated bombmakers in the world and obviously that's a great threat to our transportation and our airline systems but it's hard really to compare anything to 9/11. >> representative schiff, something that has been undertaken since 9/11 in the states is see something, say something and you have a deadline like in that something is expected in a spectacular fashion on this day. if this day passes with nothing happening, how worried are you that people become complacent? >> well, you know, i think we're well beyond complacency. most americans have adjusted to the kind of new world we're in post-9/11. i think they are more diligent
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and more aware of their circumstances. you know, we don't want to live our lives in fear, so it's one thing to be aware of your circumstances. it's another to make sure that we're not terrified by them. we don't want the terrorists to succeed that way but i think the rick of complacency is probably not a grave one particularly with all of the threat dissemination information going on. >> representative adam schiff, always a pleasure. thanks so much. >> thank you. mitch mcconnell gets caught in a political cross fire and his biggest opponent may not be a democrat.
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to iran where the country is celebrating the first official day of its new presidency. moderate cleric hassan rowhani was officially sworn in. to tay ruin where we're joined
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on the phone with ali. what's the reaction to the new president? >> well, good afternoon, alex. there's an optimistic cautious optimism here in iran. hassan rowhani as you said got sworn in today as iran's official president and out with the old and in with the new and with the new came a lot of promises from mr. rowhani. he said a vote for him was a vote for moderation and people who didn't vote for him or if people didn't vote at all shared equal rights in iran and made far-reaching claims we haven't heard very much before. he said he promised to advance women's rights and free them which is a big thing in iran. he said he was going to try to get equal rights for women across the board in the country. he said that he wanted the government to interfere less in people's lives. people should have more of a private life which is a huge step in itself and also a good indication that he may try and deliver on these promises as most of his cabinet he mentioned
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today are also moderate people that served in former governments of ka that economy and rahsaan janney and experienced people as well as moderate people and he's assessing the right tone i think and got a pretty good response from the white house. the swhous said in iran is willing to engage there will be a willing partner in the u.s. so all the dialogue is right and we should drop the dialogue of sanctions and begin one of respect and if this is an indication of future dialogue things may be good and mr. rowhani is not the man at the top but the supreme leader and the buck stops with him so we'll have to see how this plays out. >> there is a promise at least for change on a moderate level within the country. how about relative to us, ali, and the possibility of any sort of strikes by either the united states or israel on the reported
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nuclear development sites in that country? where does that stand? >> reporter: well, this question has been lingering for quite some time now and i think mr. rowhani has a short honeymoon period to deliver on his promises of openness and interaction with the west. if he can't, we could be stepping into dangerous territory. >> nbc's ali arouzi in tehran. ali, thank you very much for joining us. to politics now. the battle lines are clearly drawn in kentucky with senate minority leader mitchell mcconnell facing competition in the town of fancy farm. he and his democratic opponent both spoke at the annual political picnic this weekend. >> he and i do have our differences like when he voted to double medicare premiums. if senator mcconnell had his way his version of kentucky health care for our seniors,
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grandmother, would be to walk it off. let's just tell it like it is. if the doctors told senator mcconnell he had a kidney stone, he'd refuse to pass it. >> mcconnell focused on president obama instead of attacking his fellow opponents. >> the liberals are worried because just as i predicted obama care is a disaster for america. i fought them every step of the way. every step of the way on the government takeover. as long as i'm in the senate, kentucky will have a voice instead of san francisco and martha's vineyard. >> and we want to say happy birthday, mr. president. president obama turns 52 today. he celebrated with a round of golf saturday morning before heading to camp david. joining me now defense reporter for politico wanda summers and editor of citizen jane politics and contributor for the daily beast patricia
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murphy. lady, good to see you both. i will begin with you, patricia. an internal poll was conducted on behalf of alison grimes. it was a two-point lead. how big of a challenge is mcconnell facing. >> i think he's facing a stronger challenge than he's seen in the past. he's seeing from the democrat but another republican who has just gotten into the race and all you had to do was watch fancy farm and see him getting hammered from the left and right but the biggest problem for grimes she's a democrat and mitch mcconnell will try to paint her as a democrat -- he lost by 23 points in the last election. how muchan uphill battle it will be but he's also prepared, $15 million in his war chest so it's going to be a battle but i think for the republicans it's going to mean easier walk than for the death penalties. >> wanda, evidence of what
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patricia were is telling us right now, let's listen to the gop primary challenger and tea party favorite matt bevin because he also took aim at mcconnell. >> the people of kentucky have had enough of the amnesty, they've had enough of the bailouts. this i've had enough of wall street banks being bailed out while small kentucky businesses and farms got nothing. they've had enough. >> wanda, on the huffington howard fineman writes he was "poised, focused, more than a little savvy about what he's up against when he faces mcconnell in the gop senate primary. that means he's caught in a dangerous cross fire facing strong challenges from democratic kentucky secretary of state alison lundergan grimes. do you get a concern of how concerned they are? >> i don't think they're as concerned about matt bevin's challenges but alison grimes. the biggest threat he faces is how far can he drive mcconnell
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off message. mcconnell's playbook always has been ties democratic challenger to the obama white house to nancy pelosi to national democrats and that's kind of a winning formula. if he's able to be driven off message that could put him in a dangerous spot that could make the race far tighter than they would like. >> here's how the new republic's nate kohn puts it. "mitch mcconnell is a clear favorite because he's a republican incumbent. but the fact is incumbents don't often lose on friendly terrain." do you truly think winning the primary is in jeopardy? >> i don't know if the primary -- if he's in jeopardy in the primary and we're just going to have to see how this race plays out and what is so fascinating about those tea party challengers, they are so unpredictable but i think what mitch mcconnell has done which is very smart, he is anticipating this race and he is ready for a tea party challenge. he started moderating his own record moving to the right
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rather in 2010. he has been ready for this challenge for three years and hired a very well-known strategist rand paul's campaign manager to inoculate himself so no other tea partyer could get them on his team so unlike challenges in florida, utah, texas where i think those republicans were really asleep at the switch, mitch mcconnell is not asleep at the switch. he's also known to be especially ruthless. already has attack ads up against bevin so mcconnell is vulnerable but he is a very, very strong campaigner. >> wanda, how does all this play into talk of the gop retaking the national in 2014? >> what you see in the senate a lot is right now the senate republicans are increasingly fractured, increasingly at war with themselves. if alison grimes or matt bevin is able to take down mcconnell it would be a huge loss for this party in terms of momentum, in terms of what they're hoping to build on so i think that's certainly a concern here and that's what makes this race one of the most interesting and one of the most hotly watched in the
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country right now. >> thus our segment with the two of you. wanda summers and patricia murphy. it began with a boom and ended with tragedy. what went wrong with this implosion? with new phillips' fiber good gummies. they're fruity delicious! just two gummies have 4 grams of fiber! to help support regularity! i want some... [ woman ] hop on over! [ marge ] fiber the fun way, from phillips'.
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it should have been ended 5:00 p.m. on friday so i'm thinking this week they'll probably end it. we have a big nfl preseason starting next week and that's huge commercial money. they have to end this thing soon. >> they do. also you forgot "big bang theory." that's my parents' favorite. they're probably going ballistic with that one. what's the sticking point, keeping them from resolution? >> basically cbs, les moonves is asking for 600% more than time warner has paid in the past for its warner and time warner says that's outrageous. >> is it outrageous compared to what everyone else gets? >> i don't think it is outrageous. it's a lot of money compared to what cbs was getting before. >> in the past. >> but compared to others it's not a lot. you have to keep in mind cbs is a free network. you can get this with the antenna. other ways to watch this programming but for cable customer, they do pay cbs for the content. >> but with regard to what's being blacked out right now, isn't it all of cbs property so
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that would include showtime too. >> showtime, amc, my mom will be upset about that. she loves watching -- i'm sorry, tmc, turner classic movies is being blacked out, as well. also premium channels but replacing it, trying to give back their customers, giving them starz and encore, premium channels for free, not a discount, just these channels for free in the meantime. >> yeah, let's switch to topic you and i were discussing last week, spike lee trying to get funding with kick starter, a novel unique way of doing things. he defended the move to do it on bloomberg earlier this week. let's take a listen to what he said. >> i've been doing kickstarting before there was kickstarting. >> so you know -- >> can i finish please? "60 minutes" so i would like to get my voice in. i was doing kickstarter before there was kickstarter. that's how i raised my money -- >> why go to kickstarter?
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if you know how to raise it why go there. >> crowd funding is the new wave to get financing. >> so how does the little guy potentially get affected if guys like spike lee are using kickstarter? >> there are a lot of independent filmmakers that are upset with spike and spoken out. the bloomberg tv hosts were pointing that out. people are asking spike to get off kickstarter. what spike was saying about him using kickstarter before there was kickstarter is true. '92 his film "malcolm x." a huge film starring denzel washington. he called on his friends and kick-started the film in his own way. oprah winfrey, janet jackson, bill cosby donated money to spike lee for this film so he's always called on the public to help him do his film. >> in doing so, let's face it, he gets out on kickstarter. if you wanted to put money for kickstarter, i can, you can, anybody can or not. if you don't want to fund his film -- >> agreed, agreed.
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>> so when people are lambasting him for being on kickstarter, is it fair. >> i don't think so. he puts out quality lot. he doesn't do it a whole lot and it's open to the public and what spike argued he's bringing people that don't typically go to kickstarter a lot of african-americans to kickstarter. he's opening up this platform that you can use to create art, music, film, not just movies, you can use kickstarter for so he's bringing people to this great platform. >> absolutely. bringing a lot of exposure to kickstarter and allow people to get wonderful projects out there. chris witherspoon, come see us again. thank you. a-rod is still talking but will he still be playing after today. that's the question. o know if we can pick her up. yeah, we can make room. yeah. [ male announcer ] space. yes, we're loving this communal seating. it's great. [ male announcer ] the best thing to share? a data plan. at&t mobile share for business. one bucket of data for everyone on the plan, unlimited talk and text on smart phones. now, everyone's in the spirit of sharing. hey, can i borrow your boat this weekend?
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spending the day with my niece. i don't use super poligrip for hold because my dentures fit well. before those little pieces would get in between my dentures and my gum and it was uncomfortable. even well-fitting dentures let in food particles. super poligrip is zinc free. with just a few dabs, it's clinically proven to seal out more food particles so you're more comfortable and confident while you eat. so it's not about keeping my dentures in, it's about keeping the food particles out. [ charlie ] try zinc free super poligrip. welcome back to "weekends with alex witt." new this hour, california police say they have arrested a man on suspicion of driving into crowds at the venice beach boardwalk killing one person and injuring 11 others, in fact, we are getting word from the lapd they have arrested him and are charging him with murder.
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the suspect is identified there and we're joined right now on the phone by daniel regador would witnessed the crash. i understand you were running when this crash happened. what did you see? >> i was running south from santa monica pier along the surf and also i saw all of a sudden this mass of people just getting out of the way of something and a lot of mayhem, things being thrown up in the air and i saw this one guy flying flew the air and it was just horrible. >> so when you got a little bit closer, i mean, you're seeing things from kind of the beach and the waterfront perspective there. then what did you see? how bad was it? >> to half a mile away from the direct -- and i ran up and i saw
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everybody in hysteria and a couple of people stalled out mangled on the ground and just a lot of blood and it was just really awful. >> yeah, you know, there are reports that this was intentional. i mean, something like this happening like an accident is one thing but is there anything you saw or reports that you got from people who were even closer that say this looked intentional? >> well, what i saw happened so quickly and one of the vendors that i was talking to when i got to the scene said that this guy was intentional -- he thought it was a terrorist attack and it just reminded me of the last action that happened this way when there was a guy plowing through the farmer's market in santa monica.
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>> right, third street mall and that's the one i was thinking about myself because that was an elderly gentleman and i believe there was some sort of health issues. i mean he was a much older manage who was driving and lost control of the car. when we talk about this guy we're talking about 38-year-old nathan campbell, the man arrested and charged with a count of murder with one person having been killed. another 11 injured. how about emergency responders? how long did it take them to get there, daniel? >> they were there immediately and it was incredible, even the lifeguard trucks were racing towards this and everybody was pitching in to help so -- >> what about the car leaving the scene? what happened there? >> like i said, it happened so quickly and i was pretty far away at that point. i heard that people were trying to stop this guy, but i was too
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far away from it. >> and you've got to imagine on a gorgeous, you know, afternoon on the weekend there where you've got a lot of people how crowded was the area on the boardwalk? >> oh, there were hundreds of people along the boardwalk especially around there and the eerie thing and usually you hear a lot of music, some street performers and everyone was eerily quiet, just aghast at what just happened. >> yeah. it's probably something you're not going to be get over having seen any time soon, are you, daniel? >> i hope not. i hope not. it was dari. >> i can about imagine. well, we're very glad for your report on this. thank you very much. glad you're safe, as well, daniel regidor. elsewhere in california several are recovering after a demolition goes terribly wrong.
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shrapnel went flying. some of those metal pieces flying out. these people had gathered to witness the event. they were behind a police barricade and it was set up at what was considered a safe perimeter. >> we were just out here watching the explosion like everybody and i caught a piece of shrapnel just below my knee. it's inside my leg right here. >> police report another man lost one of his legs and might lose the other one. authorities are investigating to determine what exactly went wrong. now to the big story in major league baseball. will the league take action against alex rodriguez tomorrow and if they do, how harsh will the discipline be? rodriguez is accused of using performance-enhancing drugs and on strugging the league's investigation and the league could be gearing up to make an example out of the yankee superstar. joining me now sports attorney steve olnick. >> thanks for having me. >> we don't know how much the mlb has on rodriguez but rye are there rumors of such a lengthy
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suspension? >> what happens is normally and typically how they get suspended is through especially in this particular instance is through the joint drug agreement but now the major league baseball is getting a little crafty and trying to go through the collective bargaining agreement whereby they're able to essentially suspend him for anything that is detrimental to the league so the process is we're going to suspend based off this evidence that who knows like you said they have in which they can have the right to suspend him. >> okay, and we know that a-rod has been, you know, quite very vociferous about that happening and what that implies if it happens. that said, steve, if he is found guilty of using performance-enhancing drugs, how much money does he still have coming at him, and can you understand how the yankees would feel like really, we have to pay him upwards of maybe $100
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million for nothing? >> correct. and that's the fundamental point. i mean, he has $100 million coming to him and, you know, if he's suspended as reports are through next year he's going -- you know, lose roughly $34 million from this point forward through next year. so this is going to be an ongoing battle and i'm sure major league baseball has something because if they didn't, where would the reports come from? so i mean -- yeah. >> let's say he gets suspended through the end of the year. you were talking about a contract that has about $100 million left on it, 34 million of which he would not be able to cash in on through 2014. does that mean, though, that the yankees come hell or high water would have to pay him $60 million when he was able to be reinstated even if they didn't take him back on the team? >> yeah, that's the problem. i mean, major league baseball has guaranteed contracts so, yes, they would be on the hook, however if there is based off this evidence what it is, who knows, if there is something that kind of makes major league
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baseball look bad, they could try to void this contract and that's what the battle here is, alex. they're trying to see what exactly how alex rodriguez, what he exactly did and then go from there. >> okay. >> it's going to be a battle. >> a couple of things i want to hear. first up a comment that rodriguez made this weekend. this one came from friday and here's that. >> i will say this, there's more than one party that benefits from me not ever stepping back on the field, and that's not my teammates and it's not the yankee fans. >> who is it? who benefits -- >> i can't tell you that right now and i hope i never have to. >> who do you think he's referring to, steve? >> you know, everyone knows, it's the yankees because they don't have to pay him the money. >> one more sound bite from him. here's part of what he said just yesterday after playing in a couple minor league games and hit a pretty good home run. let's listen. >> focus has been to play
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baseball. get ready to play tonight, excited to be playing tonight even more excited about monday. i feel i can't wait to see my teammates. i feel like i can help us win. >> is there any chance you think he's being somewhat delucienal. he's talking about monday getting to chicago and playing. >> alex, he's 38 years old. he's got a contract for $100 million that he's supposed to be owed. he's going to say everything that he can to make it look like he can play so whether that's, you know, he's going to be able to, you know, hit five home runs next year or 20 home runs or whatever the case may be, he's going to say everything that he should to essentially make sure he gets that money. >>ing inokay. steve olenick, thanks for joining us. men behaving badly. can they salvage their political careers? the big three are next. a quarter million tweeters musicare tweeting.eamed. and 900 million dollars are changing hands online.
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it is time now for the big three and today's topics, who gets the blame. men behaving badly and this week's must-reads. let's bring in the big three panel, shira tuplits, angela wry and former bush cheney senior adviser robert trainum. good to see all three of you. thanks for joining me. >> angela, i'll begin with you and our first topic, who gets the blame? congress is now on its five-week summer vacation and for all the criticism lawmakers get for being the do nothing congress house republicans did push through repealing obama care for the 40th time. yeah, i say this with a little bit of sarcasm dripping. the latest nbc/"wall street journal" poll shows only 12% of americans approve of the job congress is doing so who should get the blame for this? >> well, i think the american people have it right given your poll, alex. there is no reason to approve of any action that congress is
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taking. on the house side the mere fact that the republicans really believe that the repeal strategy will work, not only by the votes that they're taking but also supported by what speaker boehner just said on television a couple of weeks ago which is that they should not be judged by the number of bills they pass but rather by the number of laws they repeal. that doesn't even measure up to what they originally said about obama care which was they wanted to implement a repeal and replace strategy. so much so for replacing. >> robert, what does passing obama care repeal 40 times accomplish? do you understand why americans are frustrated with congress? >> yes and no but, remember, members of congress represent their individual district so when members of congress say, particularly republican members of congress say i'm only listening to my constituents, this is what they want they're telling the truth. the follow-up about approval members of congress, if you were to ask individual americans, do you approve of your individual member of congress, the number is 40%, 50%, 60% approve so the
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american people to a certain degree are to blame here when it comes to this divided government because they elected hard-core, hard right or hard left members of congress but when it comes to actual legislating it's hard so a little more detailed or nua e nuanced than what you and angela mentioned. >> i'll pick up on what you said. we hear about incumbents being give to beat but if only 12% of americans approve of the job congress is doing, think we can expect to so a lot of these lawmakers lose their seats in the midterm elections. >> no, i don't think we will see a lot of incumbents lose their seats. that has to do a lot with the congressional map and a lot of districts that have been drawn essentially to keep these incumbents in office. redistricting which is the process of redrawing boundaries every ten years which was just last year and a lot of turnover over the last couple of cycles. 2006 a big wave year and same
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with 2008 and 2010 so a pretty he fresh-faced congress and won't see a lot of incumbents, usually the most entrenched can be the most vulnerable and upstart situations. >> okay, let's go to men i'll stay with you, sharon. it has nothing to do with robert trainer, he's a good guy. bob fill ner will begin the intensive therapy tomorrow, after i believe nine women came forward and said he sexually harassed them. one is laura fink whom i spoke with. >> i came up and was complimented by one of the guests for my performance in putting the event together. and he said that i had worked my behind off for the congressman. the congressman then turned to me, told me to turn around, and i did. and he proceeded to pat me on the behind, laugh, and say, nope, it's still there. >> that's a big old yuck right there. but do you think this intensive therapy's going to save the mayor's career or is he going to
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be forced to resign? what do you think, shira? >> that's a toughy. bob fillner really wants to weather this storm. the fact that he is staying in office and going into two weeks of intensive therapy, or whatever it is, i think it says he wants to stick it through. i think you'd have to see a lot of democratic power brokers in the country. and there have been a few. but you would have to see people like president obama and bill clinton say it's time to leave, bob. >> angela, i want to talk about anthony weiner with you. do you think he's going to weather this storm? he's dropped to fourth in the polling numbers. what's the point? >> he seems very determined to stay in this race. and he also seems very reluctant to really change his ways. the fact that he has dropped fourth in the racy think is very telling about the new york people. and whether or not they're willing to elect him and have
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him represent their interests as mayor. i think more importantly, the american people can generally be very forgiving, not just in politics but sports and entertainment. if your personal issues tend to distract from your ability to serve, i think people get fed up and walk away. >> robert, can i ask you about eliot spitzer? amid the prostitution scandal a few years ago. is there a different temperament with him? how is his approach different from, say, anthony weiner's? quickly. >> no question about it he has a different temperament. he has been very critical of himself. he obviously resigned very quickly. he seems to be very thoughtful about his former transgressions. i think the american people can see a little authenticity with him as opposed to some of the others. >> the big three's must-reads are next, including -- well, i'll let you know after the break. how much protein
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we are back with the big three for this week's
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must-reads. shira, what's yours? >> the great role call article out earlier this week called the ten republicans who could be speaker, goes through a list of possible candidates. great choices from the obvious, like eric cantor to the not so obvious tom price. >> angela, how about yours? >> sure. mine is millennial marquee to making america stronger. a "huffington post" blog on why millennials are key to not only upcoming elections but 2020. >> how about you, robert? >> a great piece on the turf wars, between the nsa, the secret service, fbi and cia. it's really interesting and walks the reader through specifically how important the nsa is, and how even more important the information they seek it. >> and how important it is for them all to work together. >> as a team.
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>> thank you very much. i appreciate your time. that is a wrap of this sunday edition of weekends with alex wit. have yourselves a great day. ♪
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and 22% fewer calories than dog chow. discover the lighter side of strong. new purina dog chow light & healthy. our key issues and people this sunday -- high alert, an al qaeda terror threat. who is behind the administration's high anxiety? we'll hear from two leading u.s. senators including the top republican on the senate intelligence committee. the snowden affair. russia gives him temporary asylum. how the obama administration is trying to win the debate over privacy versus security. craving the spotlight. politicians and personal scandals. what makes them think they should stay in public life? inside on the pursuit of redemption from our political roundtable including the host of msnbc's "morning joe," joe scarborough. and judgment day. the fate of some of baseball's biggest stars hangs in the balance as they face the


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