tv CBS Evening News With Scott Pelley CBS June 29, 2012 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT
>> pelley: tonight, now it's war against the wildfires. the military joins the fight in colorado. the commander in chief visits the front lines. barry pederson is with the uvacueees. >> it's just total devastation. >> pelley: the supreme court didn't end the battle over health care reform. >> this has to be ripped out by its roots. >> pelley: the speaker of the house tells norah o'donnell the republicans have just begun to fight. sea levels are rising, but why are they rising so much more on the east coast? jim axelrod has the answer. and steve hartman on the road, when wounded american troops send out a call, she answers again and again. >> reporter: you can't say no. >> no, you shouldn't say no. >> reporter: but you can't say
no. ( laughs ) captioning sponsored by cbs this is the "cbs evening news" with scott pelley. >> pelley: good evening. could this be the turning point in the week-long battle against that massive wildfire in colorado? firefighters say they have fought it to a standstill on the edges of colorado springs. but the fire has taken a heavy toll already. two people were found dead inside a burned out house. 346 homes have been destroyed. and more than 30,000 people have evacuated. president obama visited the disaster area today and called the devastation enormous. the president ordered the military into the battle, and barry pederson was there when the troops flew in. >> reporter: the air battle got reinforcements today. four more military c-130s, with 21 tons of fire retardant
per drop, were added to the fire tankers here, and the ground war will soon get help from 145 combat engineers based in colorado springs. they're now getting three days of firefighting training to join 1100 firefighters already on the line. when the 100-foot-high flames swept down the hills tuesday and into the neighborhoods, firefighter chris villegas was in the thick of it. so intense you had to retreat twice and then finally pull out. was there any hope of saving the homes at that point? >> there was nothing we could do. we couldn't see 10 feet in front of us. i just saw, you know, orange sky. >> reporter: aerial photos in today's "denver post" showed what the fire heft behind from what had been one of the city's nicest neighborhood. carol lyn lucas took this video just before she and her family fled the fire and didn't know her home was gone until she saw this picture of debris. >> it's just total devastation. when you've, uhm, had a home
that you've created and you've built as your family nest, it's like a death. >> reporter: she took these videos of the house before the fire, a family antiques and mementos, and now shawnted by losing her home of 22 years where she and her husband raised a family of three boys. >> every night when i go to bed now and i get into bed, i go room to room and i think about what i left, and i think why didn't i take that? why didn't i grab that? my grandmother's mirror? or i think about things they left, and you just second guess yourself. but you can't go back and then you have to say stop, stop. you can't do that. they're only things, and people matter most of all. >> reporter: today she is somewhere between the shock of what she lost and what is ahead. >> you're almost in a survival mode for-- for us, and then you start thinking about where are we going to have christmas?
and what are we going to do? >> reporter: if there is good out of this, that's it? you lived. >> we lived. we lived. and we will live on. >> reporter: well, there's good news, scott. the fire now 25% contained. and all that smoke you see behind me, not alarming. in fact, this is part of backfires set by fire crews. they're creating a break so the fire up in those hills cannot move into homes down below. >> pelley: fingers crossed. barry, thank you very much. this morning, the air force academy in colorado springs was reopened. it had been evacuated earlier. and we were struck today by an image from the "denver post" of a different wildfire near fort collins, colorado. 85-year-old george vidach came home yesterday. there was nothing left. he lived there 50 years. the family pictures are gone, he said, but "i have my memories." he was a refugee from the invasion of hungary in 1957.
compared to the soviets, he said, this is nothing. today, the battle over president obama's health care law moved into a new phase. one day after the supreme court upheld the law, house republicans were vowing to repeal it. norah o'donnell sat down with the speaker of the house, john boehner today. norah. >> reporter: and, scott, republicans have already voted 30 times in the house of representatives to repeal or defund the affordable care act, but it never gets beyond the republican-controlled house because the senate is controlled by democrats. well, they plan to do it all began on july 11, and speaker boehner made clear, republicans want to repeal the whole act, including provisions that he acknowledges are popular. why not, them, if you like some of the provisions in the affordable care act, why not work with it rather than repeal the whole thing? >> no, no, no. >> reporter: even mitt romney-- >> this has to be ripped out by its roots.
this is government taking over the entire health insurance industry. the american people do not want to go down this path. they do not want the government telling them what kind of insurance policy they have to buy. and how much they're going to pay for it. and if you don't like it, we're going to tax you. it has to be ripped out, and we need to start over, one step at a time. >> reporter: so you say to heck with all these provisions, like additional preventive care for children and women-- >> all of them. when we replace this, we can have a commonsense debate about which of these provision ought to stay and which ought to go. >> reporter: so, scott, repealing the president's health care law may ultimately be decided at the ballot box this november, but republicans would have to he'd on to the house, wayne super majority in the senate and win the presidenciy. and even then, scott, it would take some time to unravel this landmark legislation. >> pelley: speaker boehner's first interview since the ruling. norah, thank you very much. you can see more of norah's interview with the speaker this sunday on "face the nation"." what does the court's decision
mean in the presidential race? well, that would be a question for john dickerson, our cbs news political director. john, how is this going to affect the presidential race? >> well, for mitt romney, it's turned out pretty well in the short term. the ruling's helped him raise $5 million already. though conservatives were well on their way to falling in line behind romney. now they're rushing to because only by electing him can they put an end to this law. but it's an open question how much mitt romney will be able to use this issue to woo voters will not already in his camp. romney's case against the affordable care act is muddled because in mrs., not only did mitt romney advocate a health care plan with an individual mandate, but it also included a tax on anyone who did not have insurance. you heard john boehner there complain about that tax. chief justice john roberts ruled that the affordable care act uses a tax in a similar way. that's what boehner was talking about. these similarities may make it too difficult for mitt romney to make the president's health care plan an issue. >> pelley: john, does the court's ruling help or hurt the
president? >> reporter: the president's advisers say he was very happy with the ruling, but it's mostly because he dodged what could have been a disaster, the upending of his signature legislative achievement. but the affordable care act is still unpopular, which is why president obama seems so anxious to move on in his remarks after the decision yesterday. he doesn't want to get stuck fighting a battle he's been losing, and the president's aides also believe the voters care about other issues. in a recent poll, jobs was number one. >> pelley: john, thank you very much. wall street had its second-best day of the year today. the dow soared 277 points, more than 2%. halfway through the year, the dow is up 5.4%. the market rallied today after europe agreed to a plan to bail out its troubled banks. but is europe out of danger? mark phillips is at the european union summit in brussels. >> reporter: it was a victory of two marios from italy, mario
balotelli scored both italian goals in a dramatic win over germany in the european soccer championships. an iitalian prime minister mario monti kept his suit on to score an apparent victory or german chancellor angela merkel, in the european union summit to try to save the euro and with it the economy. he kept the e.u. leaders up most of the night. in the end, merkel backed down. e.u. loans can now be funneled directly to failing spanish banks, for instance, instead of having to be channeled through the spanish government. that would rescue the banks without adding to spain's debt, which is why its prime minister was smiling and why the germans weren't. they not only lost the soccer game. many feel they've given europe a credit card for which they pay. markets around europe soared,
but economists like jean pisani-ferry told us, early euphoria over a deal can go sour. >> details are terrible. the details are extremely complex. >> reporter: the devil is in the details. >> expect long negotiations on the details. >> reporter: the e.u. leaders have declared victory and left town but if this really is victory, another politician far away wins, too, an american president seeking reelection. without a european recovery, an american recovery continues to stumble. good times here, if they return, mean more chance of good times at home. >> pelley: mark phillips joins us from brussels. and, mark, you said the e.u. leaders declared victory but there must be a lot more they have to do. >> reporter: well, there is. in fact they've already met 17 times prior to this meeting to try to solve of the euro crisis. this is the first time they've actually declared victory and say they've solved the short-term and long-term problems with the euro, but there's still a lot of this deal
to be worked out, still to be written, and of course there's still the market's reaction to be considered. >> pelley: we'll be watching. mark, thanks very much. in mexico, an election is overshadowed by the deadly drug war. why sea levels on the east coast are rising more rapidly. and one giant leap for china's space program when the cbs evening news continues. break a leg! i used to love hearing that phrase... but not since i learned i have... postmenopausal osteoporosis and a high risk for fracture. i want to keep acting but a broken bone could change that. so my doctor and i chose prolia® to reduce my risk of fractures. prolia® is proven to help make bones stronger. proven to help increase bone density. i take prolia®. it's different. it's two shots a year. [announcer:] if you take prolia® (denosumab) you should not take xgeva®.
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one issue dominates-- the drug war. 56,000 have died in drug-related killings since 2007, more than 6,000 this year alone. with so many families torn apart, we sent bill whitaker to mexico city to tell their story. >> reporter: the toll of mexico's street war isn't measured only in keiths. it's also the toll on average citizens who are terrorized, like this young woman we met. she's in hiding, afraid to reveal her identity. you still live in fear even though you are far away? >> si. >> reporter: yes, she said, she constantly fears someone will recognize her. a few months ago she was a happy wife and mother with a two-year-old daughter and a baby on the way. when we met her, she couldn't stop crying. her family had fled los zeta, mexico's most ruthless cartel known for tout and beheadings.
her father-in-law was the best surgeon in town. one day a gangster's girlfriend asked him to come help a friend. suspicious and afraid he refused. a few weeks later, armed thugs burst into their house looking for the doctor. they tuned his family instead. "they said they were going to cut our heads off," she told us. they told her they would cut her unborn baby out of her belly. you thought you would die. >> si. >> reporter: yes, but she worried more about her daughter. when they didn't find the doctor, gangsters took her son, her husband at gunpoint. >> reporter: were you able to have a last word or last touch? >> no. nada. >> reporter: "no, nothing" she said. all she could do was look out the window and call his name. do you think he heard you? "i hope he did," she said. she hasn't heard of her husband since. valentina peralta helps victims
escape drug violence in a kind of mexican underground railroad. she said all three major presidential candidates vow to stop the violence but won't say exactly how. most mexicans don't think they can. she said cartels have the money and power to intimidate police, judges, and politicians, a frankenstein monster no one can control. these days, this woman in hiding lives in a kind of prison, no job, no money, no freedom. what she has in abundance is fear and anger. she doesn't want to raise her children on that. bill whitaker, cbs news, mexico city. >> pelley: the u.s. anti-doping agency has now filed formal charges against lance armstrong. he's accused of using performance-enhancing drugs, and it could cost him his record seven tour de france titles. armstrong's lawyer said today there is not one shred of credible evidence to support the charges. rising sea levels-- they could
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arctic andant arctic have been melting glackiers and contributing to the rise in sea levels around the world, but there is one place where the ocean is rising more rapidly than just about anywhere else, the eastern united states. how could that be? here's jim axelrod. >> reporter: in coastal norfolk, virginia, ed and julie guyton hate to think about the constant threat of flooding they face. >> we've had three floods from tidal surges from storms that entered into our home in the first floor at least seven inches, up to 10 inches. >> reporter: since 1990, sea levels have gone up about two inches around the world, but in norfolk, it's more than double that, 4.8 inches. >> yit's scary. it's pet riifying. are you kidding? you can't think about it. >> reporter: actually, it's not just norfolk but a 600-mile stretch of the atlantic coast from north carolina to boston, that's now seeing sea levels
rise much faster than the rest of the world. philadelphia's up 3.7 inches. new york, 2.8 inches. ben strauss studies rising sea levels for the nonprofit climate central. >> sea level rise is like a creeping tsunami. it goes almost imperceptibly year by year, but it's gaining a tremendous amount of strength and it's going to have an enormous impact on our coasts. >> reporter: strauss blames global warming for melting polar ice caps that in turn slows the gulf stream, creating a traffic jam of water that makes sea rise worse along the east coast. new york city's office of emergency management predicts sea levels two to five inches higher in the next decade, 7-12 inches in the tonight 50, up to nearly two feet higher by the 2080, which would change the face of the city. do you almost feel helpless, like what can we do about this? >> there's not really much you can do. >> reporter: the projections are even scarier for jerry healy, who is mayor across the
hudson river in jersey city, new jersey. 35% of his city is two to three feet below sea level right now, and first floors of new buildings must be constructed three feet above the sidewalk. could jersey city exist with the water levels being another three or four feet higher? >> it could exist but not as we're doing business today. >> reporter: the best guess is rising sea levels could cost the major cities on east coast at least $300 billion by 2050. jim axelrod, cbs news, jerzo city, new jersey. >> pelley: china's most ambitious space mission ended dade as a capsule landed with a thud and a cloud of dust in inner mongolia. a crew of three, including chineica's first female astronaut, spent 13 days in orbit. it is the first time china docked with a space station in orbit, something the u.s. and russia did in the 1960s. she's helping america's war effort, armed only way tape gun.
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tonight with an american who loves her country as much as anyone we know. for her, it's not about wearing her patriotism on her sleeves. it's about rolling them up. steve hartman met her on the road. >> reporter: if you're a soldier arriving at landstuhl hospital in germany, chances are you didn't have time to pack. which is why once they're on the mend, a lot of these wounded warriors come here. >> we've got tons of pillows and blankets. >> reporter: this is where they can pick up for free everything they need to make their stay more comfortable. >> it makes a tremendous difference for their moral. >> reporter: colonel luke pittman told us all this comes from donors, much of it, believe it or not, from a single donor in virginia. >> it's my garage. >> reporter: a loan grandma, in a two-car garage. just look at all those boxes. >> i need lots of boxes. >> reporter: obviously. every day, karen grimord does her part for the war on terror.
he sent her first box eight years ago after seeing a public service announcement and has been steadily ramping up her operation ever since, both in quantity, and quality. >> i figure if i don't want to use it here, they're not going to want to use it there. >> reporter: it's certainly not military issue. which is why, although it started with landstuhl, karen now gets requests from more than 150 combat hospitals, doctors and medics. you can't say no. >> no, we shouldn't say no. >> reporter: but you can't say no. ( laughs ) i'm going to try with every bone in my body. if it's on that wish list, i'm going to try to get it for them. >> reporter: to that end, karen has sent more than 7300 care packages. she spends $40,000 a year on postage alone. >> next week is going to be heavy. >> reporter: and while she does have some financial supporters, they don't cover all the costs, by any means. are you wealthy? >> no, not even close. >> reporter: put any of your own money into this?
>> uh-huh, yeah. >> reporter: most of your savings? >> yes. >> reporter: because you can't stop. a lot of people say they support the troops, but their commitment goes no further than their bumper sticker. karen, on the other hand, is all in and will be as long as there are injured soldiers in need of anything. >> i'd just like to say thank you, karen. >> just thank you from the bottom of our hearts. >> you just have to remember their faces and who they are. and you pack another box. >> reporter: steve hartman "on the road" in stafford, virginia. >> pelley: and that's the cbs evening news for tonight. for all of us at cbs news all around the world, i'm scott pelley. i'll see you sunday on "60 minutes." good night. captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
this is 9news now. >> hot doesn't begin to come close to describing this day. mother nature jacked up the thermostat. sending temperatures soaring into the triple digits and shattering the record. that's why meteorologist, topper shutt, issue add code yellow alert today. he is out at congressional club where we might see some relief. >> we issued the code yellow for heat and thunderstorms. we now have a severe thunderstorm watch that covers the entire metro area. the storms aren't close to us yet, but the atmosphere is stable. in some cases, as unstable as i have ever seen it. we do have a severe thunderstorm watch. it covers the entire metro area until 1:00 a.m. it is sunny out here now and just