tv CNN Newsroom CNN March 14, 2012 1:00pm-3:00pm EDT
unique. we had a clear and international mandate. there was unity on that. we were able to execute a plan in a relatively short time frame that resulted in a good outcome but each country is different, as david just mentioned, with respect to syria. it's an extremely complicated situation. the best thing that we can do right now is to make sure that the international community continues to unify around the fact that what the syrian regime is doing is unacceptable. it is contrary to every international norm that we believe in and for us to provide strong support to continue to talk to the russians, the chinese, and others about why it is that they need to stand up on behalf of people who are being
shelled mercilessly and why it is important for them to join us in a coalition, that's the most important thing that we can do right now. there may be immediate steps to discuss to make sure that humanitarian aid is being provided in a robust way and to make sure that an opposition unifies along principles that ultimately would provide a clear platform for the syrian people to be able to transition to a better form of government. but, you know, when we see what is happening on television, you know, our natural instinct is to act. one of the things that both of us are going to learn in every one of these crises, including
libya, is to make sure that we understand thought true all of our actions before we take those steps and that's not just important for us. it's also important for the syrian people because ultimately the way the international community mobbizes itself, the degree to which we can have a peaceful transition, rather than a hard landing that results in civil war and more deaths, the people who are going to ultimately be most affected are the people of syria. okay? thank you very much, everybody. enjoy the day. see some of you tonight. and a beautiful day it is in the rose garden of the white house there. president obama wrapping up his joint news conference with prime minister david cameron.
i want to bring in my colleagues, wolf blitzer and gloria borger. he said that he is not going to divert from his position, that there will be no change when it comes to withdrawing u.s. troops and the timetable. we heard him talk about syria and the fact that this is a peaceful, a soft landing, a transition that he wants, not a revolution. this is not a president who wants to continue on this path of war. very electric kuk tant in that spens. does that speak to what the voters are saying in the elections coming up? >> i think the news as far as withdrawing u.s. forces from afghanistan and the like, i do not anticipate any sudden additional cuts to troops. having said that, he did say it would be on the agenda, the entire nato operation when the allies are going to be in chicago. that's coming up towards the end of may.
they will discuss this and i know there are serious differences between serious nato allies over how quickly to get out of afghanistan. but the president made it clear, he wants the u.s. troops to stay through the end of 2014 which is another almost three years and the military wants most of those troops to stay until then. they think if there's an accelerated withdraw, it's going to be a disaster. taliban is going to take over. if, in fact, anything taking place will disappear. >> you have 60% of the public saying that afghanistan is not worth fighting for. you have the president saying, look, is this the way i would have worked out the situation there? if i had been president all along? absolutely not. but it's clear he's going to do the drawdown in a way that they believe will make the skmacommas
happy with it. i think he would have a problem with his commanders in the field who have made it very clear that that's not what they want to do. for right now, it's stay the course unless, of course, the nato meeting, there is some kind of decision that is made about any kind of different action. but so far the president said we're going to stick with our plan. >> there are a lot of experts who believe fervently. it doesn't make any difference in the u.s. spent another three months there or another three years there. in the end, it's going to be a disaster no matter what the u.s. does. do they continue to lose a lot of lives in the process in the next three years to try to achieve something or do they cut their losses now and get out. >> i want to bring in jessica yellin who is at the white house. what stood out in your mind because, obviously, a lot of the discussion -- most of the
discussion was on foreign policy, not so much on economics. >> reporter: right, suzanne. the news i heard was that this was the first time president himself said that us and nato mission in afghanistan will shift to a support training and combat role in mid-2013. defense secretary panetta said as much a few weeks ago but the president himself has not set that date, 2013 yet. so we heard that first from the president here today. i also heard him say on the topic of iran that the window for solving this diplomatically is shrinking. so we've heard him constantly ramp up the pressure so another notch up there. and the president leaves on a trip to south korea at the end of next week, next weekend, where he's talking about nuclear proliferation issues but we expect both iran and north korea to discuss on the side lines of
that summit. i think we're going to hear a lot more of the discussion that we heard here at the end of next week as well and then, of course, more of the afghan discussion at this nato summit in may. suzanne? >> i want to bring in chris lawrence at the pentagon. there is news coming out of afghanistan. chris, you've been following this story. we know that leon panetta arrived earlier today and there have been some incidents. what do we know? >> that's right, suzanne. even as president obama was speaking with the prime minister, defense secretary panetta was at the largest british base in afghanistan. and when he landed there, his plane had to be diverted and temporarily parked at a different area before coming back because a man, a civilian who works at catch bastian ran
over a coalition soldier and drove the vehicle out on the runway as the secretary's plane was arriving. we're told that the driver of that car drove it into a ditch and at that point the car burst into some sort of flames. the driver was on fire. he ran out of the car on to a truck and that's when coalition troops were able to put out the fire, arrest him, and then take him to the hospital to be treated. scary moments. it turned out to not be that big of a deal but at the time the officials there had no idea exactly what the motive was or how big this could be and that's why they kept the secretary's plane diverted for some time. >> chris, do we know whether or not it was the secretary who was targeted. do we have any information at all whether he was the one that they were trying to get to? >> we don't know that yet. they say the secretary was never in danger, never got that close. but you have to question the timing of this car coming out to
the runway right about the time that the secretary arrives. >> thank you, chris. >> chris lawrence, stand by for a second. you know, it's very disturbing right now to see what is happening in afghanistan and you will appreciate this. the fact that leon panetta, secretary of defense, shows up in afghanistan, he goes into a hall with a lot of united states marines and soldiers, all of them have their machine guns, their weapons, but they are forced to leave their weapons outside and not bring them in. now, this is highly extraordinary. i've gone on these kinds of trips with secretaries of defense, chairmans of the joint chiefs, u.s. military commanders. you don't disarm u.s. military personnel in a war environment but this time they did and the assumption is, they are afraid, maybe, that some soldier or marine has post traumatic stress disorder, we're going to see somebody take a shot at the
defense secretary. what are they saying about this incident when they asked u.s. marines, leave your weapon outside. you're not going to have them when you hear from the secretary of defense? >> you're absolutely right. it's a scene that is traveling with the secretary right now, that actually captured a picture of that, of the marines tack stacking their weapons outside. they can come into the area that they had been sitting down and were told to take their weapons outside. they did as they were told. this is unusual. for a secretary of defense, the marines are actually not asked to disarm. the word we're getting is that there was some afghan troops who were also in that hall. they were unarmed and did not want the afghan forces to feel
like there was some sort of separate treatment. in other words, armed americans but unarmed afghanistans. >> but in all of my experiences in these kinds of operations, the foreign troops, they are always unarmed but the american troops you don't disarm u.s. marines and soldiers in a situation like this unless you're worried that one of them could go crazy or whatever and take a shot at the defense seakt te secretary. i suspect people are more concerned right now and it's a deep concern and underscores what is going on. this is a very, very sensitive moment. potentially a turning point of the koran burnings, soldiers urinating on these afghan troops and now this massacre.
it's a very sensitive moment. >> wolf, just being there briefly around the september 11th attacks, it's one thing to hear them talk about whether they can control the afghan sold customers. this is a tremendous undertaking. you're talking about people who can't read, who can't write, who have never held a weapon before, taking over the security of their country within a matter of months and there is an issue of whether they trust each other and these are people working side by side. this is not about the afghan people but people who are supposed to be working together and clearly that trust has diminished. >> and that speaks to the same point that you were making earlier, wolf, which is, does it matter if you withdraw troops in 2014 or earlier in 2013 if, in the end, there hasn't been the trust between the american troops and the afghan troops, if in the end the americans believe that what they are doing is just not going to be enough.
then why not leave earlier? >> it's a tremendous undertaking and you're right. now it's an extraordinary moment. >> when you go to the ministry of interior, and you're a soldier, government ministry in kabul in the aftermath of the koran burning, these are not supposedly taliban, it underscores why there is such fear right now and why so many americans, whether diplomats, contract personnel, security personnel, they are confined to their bases. they are not moving around. >> so they are not doing their job. >> thank you very much both of you for adding the context. we're going to talk more politics in a little bit. we are talking politics. we are talking about the southern swing. santorum coming off of a southern sweep of alabama and kentucky. newt gingrich hanging in the race.
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he is staying in. meanwhile, mitt romney is focused on the delegate math. i'm joined by brian. good to see you again. >> good to see you. >> as always, it was an exciting night. >> it was. gingrich was supposed to own alabama. >> what does that mean for romney, meaning that the magical number of delegates, can he get there? >> this make it is all that much harder. he has got to coalesce between now and june and it's becoming more difficult. between now and may it's almost mathematically impossible for him to get to 114 h4. he needs the states of texas and
gingrich and santorum, if they stay in, it will make it difficult for him. >> in some ways, gingrich staying in helps romney because it splits the conservative vote. it splits the anti-romney vote. because if you look at last night, particularly in alabama and mississippi, it was roughly a third a third and third. but that means that two-thirds of the republican electorate did not vote for romney. >> does this mean we're looking at a convention where there is all of this horseplay late in the process. >> republicans have very organized that at some point they are going to come together and it would be disaster rouse for them to go into the convention in tampa with that much chaos. but it could happen. it's mathematically possible. if no single candidate secures 1144 going into tampa, the first
ballot does not get to 1144, many of the delegates are released and they can vote for whoever they want. >> what's the next race we should be watching? >> certainly illinois is going to be the next michigan. it's got conservatives where i used to live in naperville and you see the candidates heading there already to do the campaigning. illinois is where it's going to come down to. we're not even at the halfway point when it comes to delegates. >> still have a ways to go. it's been a great race so far. >> it's fun for us political junkies. >> thank you, brian. joining us is maria cardona and crystal wright. she is also a d.c. delegate for newt gingrich. there are e-mails circulating
urging him now is the time to drop out. why is he staying in. >> newt is not going to drop out and he's staying in because, santorum, while he was victorious in alabama and mississippi, everybody has pointed out and your guests earlier that it wasn't a landslide win for santorum. they are trying to make themselves feel good knowing that he's not going to get the nomination and i think newt is playing it exactly right. at the end of the day if newt decides to bow out, they are not going to throw their vote behind a religious and moral candidate. he's not going to be as strong of an opponent to barack obama as opposed to mitt romney. newt is doing this thing. he's taking away votes from santorum.
>> on the daily beast, patricia says that gingrich's strategy is no longer to win the race but to make mitt romney lose by not getting the 1144 elector rates before the convention in august. so is it personal? >> i think part of it is personal. it's gotten so nasty and bitter and it's the one thing that has turned off independent voters and i think that is a dangerous offer for all republicans to take a look at. but i think it has become particularly bitter between gingrich and romney and you saw it in the debates in the past and you see it in everything that gingrich has said about
romney. he's bitter about the ads and in the debates. he hasn't been able to have a good response publicly to everything that romney has slung at him. >> crystal, let's bring it back to santorum here. he says the win in the deep south proves that romney's nomination is certainly not inevitable. what do you think about santorum's chances? >> well, i think it's important for all of us not to mention the abc washington post news poll that came out this week that found both santorum and romney in a dead heat tall with barack obama whose approval rating -- disapproval ratings are now at 59% among all americans. let's not kid ourself that obama is some stuff, undefeatable candidate. back to santorum, you know, he's not -- i think he has a point. he's got wins under his belt. you can't discount that. but the delegate math, as wolf pointed out earlier, is not in
his favor. santorum couldn't get on the ballot and normally d.c. wouldn't matter. it's not the type of primary that would matter but 16 delegates, win or take all. let's also remember in alabama, santorum forfeited four delegates. he's going to forfeit about ten delegates in illinois. he doesn't have the organization and the math is not adding up to his favor and romney has over 400 delegates. so that is the reality of the situation. >> i want to turn the corner here. the democrats have jumped all over romney's comments that he would get rid of planned parenthood. listen to a response that he says about cutting the budget. >> my test is pretty simple. is the program so critical that it's worth borrowing money from china to pay for it? you get rid of obamacare. that is the easy one. but planned parenthood, we're going to get rid of that. the subsidy for amtrack. we can't afford to borrow money
to pay for these things. >> maria, i want you to weigh in on this. he's talking about cutting federal funding but others say that he's pandering to the right wing of the republican party. can he afford to continue on this line, on the way that he is talking here and still win the moderates and women who he needs to gain. but clearly he's not winning with the base and clearly he is -- does have a problem moving further into the nomination process as weak as he is, as weak as he is with this all-important conservative base. but, no, he cannot win the general election without independent women, without the broader coalition of broader voters. without latinos, he is bleeding with both of those critically
important coalitions but that is sort of the problem that he faces. he can't win his own nomination without pandering to his base. he cannot win the general election without these independent women, latino voters, and the larger coalition. that's a big pickle. >> just to wrap this up here, do you think he made a mistake to go there, to go to planned parenthood? >> absolutely not. women are not stupid and don't need to be told what to do with their bodies. planned parenthood can do just fine without funding from the united states government and a poll came out again today that found that most women are very turned off by the obama administration's decision to force religious institutions to provide birth control coverage and pay for it for women. so that's the reality. women are split on that topic. it's not all hunky dory what the obama administration did that
with. women will be critical along with independents. i think that republicans need to do a little better job of talking to independents and get off the social issues but i disagree with what -- >> yeah, but women are smart and don't want the government in their business. >> right. so why did the president start putting government fighting -- >> listen. >> they are fighting for women rights. >> no, they are not. it shows that he wasn't. >> i'm going to have to jump in here. i know the two of you are not going to agree on this point but we will have you a back to debate it another time. thank you very much, crystal, maria, good to see you, as always. >> thank you, suzanne. the killing spree in afghanistan is tragic. is it affecting the war there? we're going to dig a little deeper. developing smaller portion sizes and more low- & no-calorie beverages...
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houston. this is a shooting that took place in beaumont texas out oh side of a courthouse. this is kbmt reporting that three people have been shot. at least one person killed in a shooting that took place outside the jefferson, texas county courthouse. i want to bring in judge larry jist. he was outside to leave, headed to lunch when he heard the shots. can you hear me? >> yes. >> can you tell us what happened? >> it's, as you can imagine, fresh and it's hard to be definite about this but i guess we were about a block and away from the courthouse and they heard over the radio that there was a shooting at the courthouse and so we jumped back and they
moved back. there was a defendant on trial, it was break time, lunchtime, and he apparently shot three people, maybe four. one apparently is deceased. and he was -- had a big case, apparently he was shot at some point by the police and captured and he's now on his way to the hospital. in custody. >> and, judge, can you tell me who you've been talking to? >> mostly from the police radio and people at the courthouse. >> do you know where the shooting took place? are they telling you where it actually took place? >> it was outside of the courthouse, as i understand it. but -- >> and -- >> beyond that, i don't know. apparently he was leaving in his truck and hit that person, too. >> do you know how he got a
weapon, a gun? >> we don't know that right now. >> typically would he have to go through metal detectors? >> yes, we have metal detectors and security at the front doors of the courthouse. >> do we know anything about the victims, the shooting victims? are these people part of this proceeding in his -- >> one of the people shot was one of the witnesses in the proceeding against him. he was charged with aggravated sexual assault of a child. >> and do we know if the parents of the child is one of the victims? >> i believe one of the witnesses may have been the mother of the child. i can't confirm that right now. it wasn't my case and i don't know all of the relevant facts. i know you need to know them but
i'm just not familiar with them right now. >> what is taking place with the courthouse? >> they evacuated the court hos as a crime scene. there is probably 600 people working there now. but it's all roped off now as they would when they investigate a scene like this. >> okay, judge, thank you. and we'll wait to hear from law enforcement as to what happened outside of the courthouse. preliminary reports, that multiple people were shot and the suspect -- that the police shot the suspect and have him in custody. we'll try to get more details as we confirm more information. thanks again, judge. we're going to take a quick break. like these sweet honey clusters... actually there's a half a day's worth of fiber in every ... why stop at cereal? bring on the pork chops and the hot fudge. fantastic.
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the united states is trying to play damage control after the massacre in afghanistan. over the weekend a shooter went on a shooting spree mowing down civilians. bringing in fareed zakaria to talk about this. one of the things that the president made clear is that we would not be at this moment a change in policy, in moving out u.s. troops. that timetable remains if there's not some sort of movement here? >> there was a stronger reaction to the koran burning and i think for most afghans -- and i'm
speculating here -- but i think the idea that there was some kind of policy decision made to destr destroy korans is something that struck at the very core of the issue did the united states strike their religion and customs. this shooting has been seen as a just a tragic case of one bad guy. it is not seen as something that was ordered by any command structure that the united states military in any way condoned and i think that the administration's response, very forceful saying that president obama said we take this as seriously as we would if these were americans who were killed. i think that has gone some way in making people realize this wasn't some kind of policy. now, at the end of the day, the afghans are tired of seeing american soldiers in their country. >> do you think that there's any daylight between president obama
and british prime minister because clearly the brits don't want to be there one day later, another day. >> i think that president obama, if you woke him up in the middle of the night, would have a position not so different from david cameron's. i think the united states wants to go in a way that is responsible, keeps the place stable. i think the brits feel the same way. >> i want to turn to iran, if we can. we heard from the israeli prime minister netanyahu and he was making it very clear that they believe iran has the capability to build a nuclear weapon, that they would certainly be willing to attack. president obama is a bit different than that. they want to see if iran is building a bomb. what do we make of the position of the united states right now in terms of being dragged into some sort of conflict with iran? do you think that the tone of the white house is appropriate? >> suzanne, that's a very smart
question but i think the white house has tried to play this in a way which may have been too clever by half. their view, which i completely agree with this, they are taking the threat very seriously. they have mounted an international effort. iran is more isolated, more weak, its ally, syria, is in trouble. and that we should give this time to work. the israelis are saying, no, we're not waiting for them to make a nuclear weapon. we're waiting for the capability to make a nuclear weapon and that's, of course, an intangible issue. when do they have the capability? i think that president obama went through period of real tough talk saying he was ruling out containment. >> right. >> he was not bluffing. i think he may have boxed himself into a situation where he's -- you know, he's given up a lot of his options.
he's said, i won't do this, i won't do that and unless iran surrenders and what country has completely surrendered to foreign pressure, he's left with no option but to engage in a preventive war. i think the white house recognizes that and has been trying to dial back but i would much more comfortable and i won't do containment. >> it's just an unbelievable situation that you have on the ground there. 8,000 people having been killed now. and there's this failed diplomatic mission starting with now the president is trying to at least convince folks.
>> assad will leave power. it's not a question of if but when. we will continue to support continued aspirations of the syrian people. >> fareed, do you think the united states can act on its own or do they need to wait for the united nations? >> well, the main problem is there is not a lot of military options. acting is the question of what would you do? iran -- syria is not likely the opposition don't control any cities, any territory, it's not an easy country to supply. you have the mediterranean sea and egyptian border. it's very complex and i think the president likely believes there's no point in failing in a noble endeavor. if you're going to get involved, you need to get involved in a
way that you will succeed it's very difficult to see how that would happen in syria. we have to hope that the assad regime runs out of power and money. they are pushing the russians hard to effectively cut syria off. that might be a more useful strike than a few air strikes here or there. >> fareed, thank you. the question, of course, what can the rest of the world teach the u.s. about health care? watch "global lessons, the gps road map to saving health care." it's sunday night at 8:00 p.m. eastern, 11:00 pacific. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 let's talk about fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 there are atm fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 account service fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 and the most dreaded fees of all, hidden fees. tdd# 1-800-345-2550 at charles schwab, you won't pay fees on top of fees.
about a shooting outside of a courthouse in beaumont. there was a shooting that took place earlier today. three people have been shot and at least one person killed in the shooting. this is outside the jefferson county courthouse. i've just spoken with a judge outside of that courthouse providing details. we now have kevin steel of kbmt. kevin, can you hear me? >> yes. >> yes. we know you're outside the courthouse. i understand that we have live pictures, aerials of the scene out there as well as video of somebody being taken out on a stretcher. can you tell me how many people were shot and potentially how many people killed? >> as journalists we always stay on the safe side. we know that three people were shot and we know one person was killed. we believe at least four persons were killed. those reports unconfirmed at this hour. one elderly lady was shot to death on the sidewalk along
pearl street which is here in front of the jefferson county courthouse and many of the courthouse workers that we are speaking with as they filter out of this courthouse now are telling us about that shooting and about the trauma of really that they have experienced by having seeing her lying dead on the sidewalk there. most of the courthouse workers have now been able to get out of the courthouse and they are filtering away from this facility now. obviously the shooter is in custody. it's the kind of situation here where there's a tremendous range of emotions, for those who were inside, we talked to several witnesses who said that they were locked down, that they were at one point told that the shooting was over with and then retold that they needed to take cover again because there was another fear that the shooter might reappear. we asked one woman if what she
heard sounded like machine gunfire. she had told us that there were at least, what she described, as ten gunshots heard. she said, no, not like a machine gun but in rapid succession, roughly ten shots fired. so obviously this is a fluid situation but an emotionally charged situation here at the courthouse at this hour. >> kevin, can you explain to us what eyewitnesss have told you what took place? we have learned that it was a defendant part of a procedure, some sort of trial, a case, who came outside of the courthouse, started shooting, and this was a guy who was sexually charged with molesting the child. >> suzanne, i would stress this
matter, i don't know for a fact what -- what the facts are on the ground right now. police have not come forward to tell us at our location all that's going on. press conferences could be expected to be held at any time now so we should know more very soon. >> do we know anything about the victims of this shooting? >> we don't have any names. we know only that a person was shot in the hand and the witness thought one other location on the body and was being held in the basement at the clerk's office here. we know about the elderly woman and there were earlier reports of a person wounded at a bus station nearby. the suspect has been taken into custody in what's called the rci building. i'm going to say roughly two blocks away from the courthouse here. that's what we know at this hour. >> okay. who's getting this press conference and when is it taking place? do we know?
>>know? >> reporter: i'm not in a position to know for a fact, although i see reporters massing in front of an area pretty much in front of the courthouse. i can see that from across the parking lot here where i'm at now. so it would appear that the press conference will be happening soon, and we'll keep you up to date. >> finally, kevin, if you can, tell us where are they taking the victims. have victims gone to the hospital? you say these are people who were killed and injured at the scene? >> reporter: victims will most probably be taken to the trauma center at st. christian's hospital st. elizabeth, that is the most obvious trauma center for them to go to, although in a mass casualty incident you could expect the memorial herman baptist incident to also take patients as necessary. >> and do we know anything about the suspect, the defendant in
this case? >> reporter: your reporting has been right on in that what we are hearing in the early stages of this investigation is that it was a man who had been accused in judge stevens' court, had been accused of having sexually assaulted his daughter, and we were hearing reports of a mentally challenged daughter. we are, of course, waiting for the confirmation of such matters at a police press conference which must be what's coming. >> all right. kevin steele, thank you very much. we appreciate the information. obviously, as we get more information about this breaking news story, welcome ba-- we wil come back to this story. this is just developing and unfolding here. we know a defendant who is in custody allegedly shooting and killing those outside the courthouse, someone who at least two, kevin steele and the judge, saying was charged with sexually
assaulting a child. we'll have more as we get information. we're also covering, too, the fatal shooting of an unarmed florida teen which has outraged a community. a neighborhood watch captain said he shot treyvon martin in self-defense. now a state's attorney is involved. oooh, my turn. ♪ she was in paris, but we talked for hours... everyone else buzzed about the band. there's a wireless mind inside all of us. so, where to next? ♪ brad needs car insurance, but, uh, brad doesn't want to spend too much. who's brad? this is brad. ahh! well, progressive has lots of discounts for a guy like brad. brad's intrigued. paid in full, safe driver, multi-car, going paperless --
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. the case of an unarmed teen fatally shot by a neighborhood watch captain is now in the hands of the florida state attorney's office. trayvon martin was returning from a convenience store to his father's house when he was shot. the watch captain told police he acted in self-defense. so far police have not charged the watch captain. martin's family and the community are outraged. joining us to talk about the case is legal analyst sunny hostin. sunny, first of all, explain to us, because it's confusing here. how is it that the watch captain claims self-defense when the teen is unarmed?
>> it certainly is confusing, but that is because in florida -- and i'm hearing a little bit of feedback, but in florida is one of the only states that has something called stand your ground law. and that means, suzanne, even if you are in your home and someone breaks into your home, burglarizes your home and then retreats, you don't have a duty to retreat. you can shoot the person in the back. or if you're in the place where you're supposed to be and you are attacked, you feel threatened, you can use deadly force if you feel that deadly force will be used against you. so it's one of the broadest laws, about 15 states have this law. what concerns me here, suzanne, is as you mentioned, you've got a child, a 17-year-old kid, that had a bag of skittles and a can of iced tea. he was completely unarmed, and even in florida, there is this exception to the stand your ground law, and that is called -- get a load of this --
the first agressor exception. in my view, when i look at the facts of this case, this watchman called police. he was told to stand down, that a police cruiser would be arriving because he reported a suspicious teen walking around the neighborhood. he disregarded that dispatcher, exited his vehicle and then followed the teen, pursued the teen, was aggressive toward the teen. and then alleged a self-defense. in my view when i look at a factual situation like that, that is a winnable case because you can't be an agressor and then claim self-defense. >> is there any understanding of what actually took place between the 17-year-old and this watch captain? does anybody really understand if there was an altercation or something happened between these two before he shot him?
>> well, we have conflicting witnesses' reports. certain outlets, suzanne, are reporting that they saw the two engaged in a fight. remember that the agressor, i believe he was the first agressor, weighed about 20 pounds more than this kid, but they are saying that the shooter was aggressive and pursued him, pursued trayvon martin. but, of course, those reports are conflicting at this point, and the police say they just don't have enough evidence, enough probable cause, to arrest. but i'm thrilled to say that the state's attorneys office does have the case at this point, and i hope they have the guts to charge him. >> all right, sunny hostin, thank you very much. we're going to be following this very closely. cnn newsroom with brooke baldwin continues after the break. [ male announcer ] imagine facing the day
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welcome back to cnn. top of the hour. hello. i'm brooke baldwin. let's get you caught up on everything making news this hour. let's begin with rapid fire. roll it. i want to begin in texas where a child kidnapped eight years ago has now been found safe and sound. police say the child's godmother was babysitting the eight-month-old when both disappeared. that is, until just this week when police got a call saying this little boy was safe. there is so much more to this one and in the next hour, i'll be speaking with the mother,
albany champion maureen waiting to see her son for the first time in eight years. don't miss that. also have another set of disturbing allegations from an army officer based out of st. louis, base mccord. a decorated soldier is now being charged in this alleged murder for hire plot and the allegations first surfaced when the officer's girlfriend told authorities he was threatening to have his estranged wife and boss killed. >> his ex-wife and somebody he worked with, he made comments he was going to do something big, and he made comments to other people about blowing up the capitol. so when you add the totality of all this up, we have someone dangerous and needs to be in custody, so he's locked up. also, rick santorum scoring big wins in the deep south primaries last night. but mitt romney is still far ahead with the delegates race.
the number of delegates is 1,144. as of now, cnn estimates the following delegate breakdown. romney in the lead with 498, santorum with 239, gingrich with 139 and ron paul with 69 there in last place. a horrific bus crash in switzerland kills 28 people. that includes 22 children. the bus was on its way back to belgium from a ski trip when it slammed into a wall in a highway tunnel last night. tough to look at these pictures here. another 24 kids were injured. most all of the children were 11 or 12 years of age and still no word yet as to what caused this accident. the belgium prime minister calls it a tragic day for his country. and defense secretary leon panetta calls the alleged killing of 16 afghan men, women and children by the u.s. soldier over there deeply troubling. >> each of these incidents is
deeply troubling. and we have to learn the lessons from each of those incidents so that we do everything possible to make sure that they don't happen again. >> secretary panetta is meeting with marines today. they actually had to leave their weapons outside when they spoke with him. he is the first high-ranking u.s. official to visit afghanistan since the killings on sunday but it is at all near where those shootings happened. that soldier, in the meantime, is in u.s. custody and could face the death penalty. george clooney on capitol hill today. he is talking to a senate committee about continued violence in sudan where fighting has gone on for decades and decades. clooney actually got back from a trip to its dangerous border with the republic of south sudan whe where villagers have to run off to caves to escape the bombing.
>> 15 bombs were dropped on a neighboring village. when we got there we found children filled with shrapnel, including a nine-year-old boy who had both his hands blown off. we can't give the lives back. we can't replace that young boy's hands. but we can put an end to it if we work together as a nation and as an international community. and it can start here. >> clooney is pushing lawmakers to act. and we just wanted to show you these pictures. snowy scene. look at this. this is lake tahoe, california, so obviously the higher the elevation, the heavier the snowfall. we're told the roads down below, despite these pictures, they are still passable for drivers. when it comes to skiers, sorry, some of the lifts had been closed today. a little nostalgic for me. encyclopedia britannica will be
stopping the presses. the 22 volumes will be the last. not to worry, though. the encyclopedia will be on line and on your mobile device, we're told, for a fee. still not the same thing, is it? wow, look at those numbers. the dow up just a smidge at 13,180 as we have less than two hours to go before the closing bell. we're keeping an eye on it. huge, huge day on the dow yesterday. most of the nation's largest banks had passed the federal reserve's latest tests. that's why we saw awesome numbers after 4:00 yesterday. we've got a lot more to cover for you in the next two hours, including this. a decorated soldier is accused of wanting to carry out a tragedy so huge the whole world would hear about it. but perhaps the warning signs came first. a man left the company.
he called goldman sachs destructive and only concerned about ripping customers off. george clooney tells congress something needs to be done because innocent people are dying. >> we were there when they fired three rockets over our head. plus, for several minutes, passengers heard, this plane is going to crash. >> it looks like they're physically restraining a flight attendant. >> we're now hearing what happened on board. and forget drugs, forget guns, tide laundry detergent is hot on the black market, but that's not all. find out what other products in your house criminals would love to get their hands on. the millin who have used androgel 1%, there's big news. presenting androgel 1.62%. both are used to treat men with low testosterone. androgel 1.62%
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. this is a murder for hire story. it all survives this man, colonel underwood. he is the least likely man to end up in legal trouble. underwood is accused of trying to hire a hit man to kill his estranged wife and boss. there are other allegations that he threatened to blow up the capitol building in olympia, washington. and that's not all. he pleads not guilty. he sits in the pierce county jail on $150,000 bail. jonathan joins me from the seattle times. jonathan, what a story. where to begin. let's talk about how this story came to light. this is the suspect's girlfriend. she tipped off authorities, and whatever she told them, they must have taken it obviously very seriously. be specific.
what did she go to them with? >> reporter: yeah, what we know is from the statements by his girlfriend and his estranged wife and his commanding officer at st. louis mccord, he told her he planned to kill his estranged wife and had $150,000 stashed away and had a hit man that he was going to hire, and he was also going to kill his commanding officer because he believed that his commanding officer was helping facilitate his wife's ruin of his life in this ongoing divorce. not only that, the girlfriend said he threatened to kill her when he found pornography on the computer, and that was really the trigger for her coming forward. when she came forward to police and the estranged wife and
commanding officer, she told them those things including blowing up the state capitol in olympia. >> let me go back to the pornography found on the computer. it wasn't just anyone, it was, according to police, his daughter? >> reporter: we've identified it as a relative. >> a relative. >> reporter: yes. you know, the pornography issue was highlighted in this divorce case. this divorce is really sort of the underlying, i think the driver of these threats. this seemed to be a man that was really sort of pushed to the edge with being left in financial ruin and was not given a fair shake in the court system. as a detective said, he just seemed to put it all together and he was ready to snap. >> big picture, though, here, jonathan. this comes after another soldier
with ties to the base there in washington state is now accused of killing 16 men, women and children, the civilians in afghanistan, and just a short time ago, another soldier linked to sergeant mccord killed somebody. is the base saying anything on the record? >> reporter: the base does point out that there's 4,500 soldiers deployed in afghanistan right now, another 5,000 going to a huge base. they would say that it's no more -- these individual incidences are no more indicative of base culture than if an employee of cnn got in trouble. but i think there is a great deal of local concern about the cost of this incredibly long war and the extended deployments
particularly of the stryker brigade here. you have people going back for three or four deployments as the sergeant implicated in this mass murder over the weekend had. i think there is a real concern about the psychological toll, ptsd, and how that is coming back home. >> looking at your paper, i know there have been multiple instances, and there is a great timeline on the seattle times web site that really goes back to the first date, december 8, 2004, of trying to aid terrorists. there are just multiple incidents adding up to this latest one. had something happened? what's the mood on the base? are you able to talk to anyone there? what do they say? what does the community say? >> reporter: we are really finding sort of a bunker mentality now, which is understandable. there seems to be limited amount of information about who the
individual is of the staff sergeant implicated over the weekend. off the base, there is real concern about these repeated deployments. what you're seeing -- you've seen war crimes allegations overseas, but then also these very serious incidents back home. there is routinely now really serious, you know, criminal allegations, soldiers killing their wives or in the other case a son, the park ranger, a shooting. it's the cumulative effect, i think, that has really shaken the community here. >> i can't even begin to imagine. jonathan martin with the seattle times, we appreciate you coming on and talking about this with us. thank you. moving on, though, disrespectful, destructive, toxic, all words used to describe goldman sachs from a man who resigned.
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if you have enough coin to have an account with goldman sachs, you might be feeling pretty good about yourself. but it turns out goldman sachs considers you a muppet. that is what a gold man executive -- actually, former executive. alison kosik with me from the new york stock exchange. former, former. and the man slamming goldman while making his way out the door. disgruntled or not, he seemed to have climbed very, very high before having this epiphany. >> oh, yeah, greg smith worked at goldman sachs for 12 years. he was an executive and he probably wasn't doing too bad.
he sent his resignation letter to the "new york times" instead of hr, and in that letter he said that goldman is all about making money for the firm, not its clients. he called goldman sachs, the culture there toxic and destructive. he says, it makes me ill how callously people talk about ripping their clients off. over the past 12 months, i have seen various managing directors refer to their own clients as muppets. ouch. >> ouch is right. you have to ask, though, how is goldman reacting? that's very public to get put on the editorial page. >> definitely. goldman is defending themselves. they're saying they disagree with smith. our response is best demonstrated in how we really work with and help our clients pho threw our commitment to their long-term interests.
but goldman is not just any financial firm, this is a wall street firm with a gold-plated reputation, with a really tough work ethic. and others say you read this letter and there is a lot of hypocrisy here. smith probably made a lot of money with goldman sachs and just had this epiphany? they said for financial firms, yes, it is all about business. people are in it to make money. listen to this. >> there are going to be people that make caustic remarks. if you go into the kitchen of a restaurant and a customer sends the food back, the chef may call the customer a muppet. so i think this is just like any other business. the difference of wall street is that it kind of is running the show politically for so long, and so people grab onto these types of things as an opportunity to vent. >> and i would imagine, alison kosik, that people are buzzing on wall street over this. what are they saying?
>> reporter: they're saying things like, a big shocker, goldman sachs was in it to make money? not really a big shocker here. but some on wall street was taken aback by the tone. listen to one i talked to earlier. >> i'm kind of surprised at the underlying tone. it was offensive, but the fact is i think that during the last -- especially the last four or five years, there has been a sense on a lot of people's behalf of frustration with the industry, frustration with investment banks, frustration with some of the arrogance that they displace. >> reporter: and some of that frustration, brooke, showing up in the stock movement today. goldman sachs shares down more than 3.5%. a little bit of that is because of that customer or shareholder's displeasure. once again, goldman sachs shares down more than 3 and a half percent. news just in to cnn here, multiple people have been stabbed in ohio's capitol city.
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news just in to us here at cnn. we're going to looks at some pictures. this is from downtown columbus, ohio. four people have been stabbed in this building downtown. this is the continental center, if you're familiar, on gay street. it's there off of the attorney general, ameritech, a career college. we know a victsuspect has been . four people stabbed, we know three are in critical condition, one is stable. and that's really all we know right now. we're working the phones. we don't know who this person is, this suspect, why he or she
would have stabbed these people, but again, this happened just recently in columbus, ohio in this building downtown on gay street. stay with us if we get more information, obviously we'll bring it to you. i do want to switch gears and talk politics here. we have seen some big, big wins from rick santorum and mitt romney. if you look at the numbers, the republican delegate count, but what happens if newt gingrich does stay in the race? i want to bring in wolf blitzer with our 2012 politics update. let's talk, i guess, about the newt factor first. >> if he stays in the race, it helps mitt romney because it divides up all the anti-mitt romney votes, which they're significant. if you add up how many votes, for example, yesterday rick santorum and newt gingrich got together, that's a lot more than mitt romney got. not necessarily all of newt gingrich's supporters are going to go to rick santorum, but a
lot of them will. a lot more will go to santorum than mitt romney, so the longer newt gingrich stays in, that's good for mitt romney. >> what good is it for newt gingrich to stay in? >> he came in second in mississippi and alabama. >> he says he's staying in it until august in tampa. >> he says that, but a lot of these candidates say that, they have to say that, they can't demoralize their supporters, and there is a lot of grassroots supporters gingrich has. he has fat cats, as we all know, who have given him money for the superpac. but it can't be used for day to day activities, paying your staff, doing the business of a campaign, and if that money were to dry up, other presidential candidates like dick gephart, they learn the money isn't there, you're not a candidate any more and they drop out. so newt gingrich in the coming weeks has to make some major, major decisions.
let's see, for example, how he does in puerto rico on sunday. i suspect he's not going to do that well. let's see how he does in illinois on tuesday. i suspect it will be a two-man race in illinois between santorum and romney. i can tell you based on conversations i've heard. i don't know if it was directly on him, but a lot of republicans are saying, you know what, rick santorum has earned a one-on-one matchup with mitt romney. let the two of them fight it out just as hillary clinton and barack obama four years ago after all the other candidates dropped out including john edwards and joe biden and chris dodd and bill richardson, they all dropped out and then it was just for weeks and weeks and weeks hillary clinton versus barack obama. i suspect that's what's going to happen. it's going to be rick santorum versus mitt romney. we'll go through june. we'll see what happens. >> if it remains, though, even just a two-man race, we keep throwing around the phrase broker convention, broker convention. you have to get to that 1,144
number of delegates. if that doesn't happen in tampa, explain how a broker convention works. >> i think what we're talking about in this particular case would be more of a contestant convention. in other words, two candidates showing up in tampa at the end of august, rick santorum, mitt romney. neither one of them has a commitment of 1,144 delegates. let's say one has 700, one has 99. then there's a whole procedure, round one, there's votes. then they decide, will they vote for mitt romney, will they vote for rick santorum? in round 1, does anybody get 1,144 which is the magic number. they go to round 2. sigh contestant convention is possible. i suspect in the first or second round, we will have a nominee. >> but it could take a couple rounds in tampa. >> you're going to be in tampa, aren't you? >> bosses? are you listening?
yeah, i'd like to go to the convention, please. >> could there be a democratic convention in charlotte a week later without brooke baldwin present? is that possible? >> i can't imagine it. >> we'll have the cnn drill. >> i can't wait. thank you very much. meantime, and i'm quoting here, she lost it. that is what one passenger said to a 911 operator after a flight attendant apparently had a visual meltdown on board the plane in dallas. we're going to play that 911 tape for you. wait for it after this quick break. ♪ made sure his credit score did not go bad ♪ ♪ with a free-credit-score-dot-com ♪ ♪ app that he had ♪ downloaded it in the himalayas ♪ ♪ while meditating like a true playa ♪ ♪ now when he's surfing down in chile'a ♪ ♪ he can see when his score is in danger ♪ ♪ if you're a mobile type on the go ♪ ♪ i suggest you take a tip from my bro ♪ ♪ and download the app that lets you know ♪ ♪ at free-credit-score-dot-com now let's go. ♪ vo: offer applies with enrollment in freecreditscore.com™.
passengers thought they were headed from dallas to chicago on a routine american airlines flight when their flight attendant hops on the intercom and simply snaps. what happened next absolutely stunned these people on the plane, and now we're learning a little bit more about these tense moments through these 911 calls. here's cnn alena chao.
alena. >> reporter: just imagine being on that flight. it was headed from dallas to chicago last friday. it had just left the gate and was headed for takeoff. that's when witnesses say the flight attendant just snapped. the 43-year-old woman got on the pa system and started screaming about 9/11, telling passengers the plane was going to crash. other flight attendants, even some passengers, tried to restrain her. listen to these 911 tapes that have just been released. you can hear the fear in the passengers' voices. you can also hear how the 911 operators at first don't believe what they're hearing. >> we're in flight 2332, and they're talking over the radio about crashing our plane. >> okay, who is talking about crashing your plane? >> the attendants over the p.a. >> you're on board a flight? >> yes. >> you're currently on board the flight and the attendants are announcing over the p.a. system? >> yes.
>> that they're going to crash the plane? >> yes. >> dps communications, how can i help you? >> i'm on a plane in ft. worth -- >> i've got a second caller for it. >> what would have provoked her to do this? according to the police report, the flight attendant suffered what's been called a mental episode. another flight attendant told police her colleague was bipolar and hadn't taken her medication. the report also said the flight attendant made a comment about a co-worker being killed on 9/11 when her plane went through the world trade center. on monday, one of the passengers who tried to help described the scene to our soledad o'brien on "starting point." >> were the passengers completely freaking out? >> not really. they weren't all freaking out. some were upset, you could tell, but mostly it was confusion, wondering what was happening, why wasn't anybody taking control, i'd say, would be the overall feeling of the plane at that time. >> reporter: it doesn't appear that investigators are going to file criminal charges. they're calling this a mental
episode and even referred to her as a patient, not a suspect, in the police report. american airlines will conduct its own investigation. as for the flight attendant, the airlines said she was taken to the hospital. and on the question of whether she'll keep her job, no one yet has an answer. brooke? >> can you imagine being on that plane? alena chao, thank you very much for us from new york. also, the state attorney in florida is looking into the case that has triggered accusations of racial profiling and vigilante justice. trayvon martin was killed inside the gated community at his father's house where he was staying. here's cnn's david mattingly. >> reporter: as this case continues to attract more and more national attention, we also hear the same question over and over again. how could something like this
possibly happen? here's what we know about this case. the facts in this case have not changed now for several days. we know that trayvon martin, 17 years old, had left a convenience store after purchasing some candy and a soft drink. he was walking back in a gated community to the condo where his father was staying. that's when he encountered a neighborhood watch captain, george zimmerman, age 28. zimmerman had called the police saying he had noticed a suspicious person in the neighborhood. but what happens after that is still a public mystery. the police have talked to zimmerman who claims it was self-defense, that he felt that he was threatened. he pulled his firearm during an altercation with martin, shooting and killing the afterno african-american teenager. at this point police said they have concluded their investigation. they've turned over all their facts to the state attorney. it is now up to the state attorney to decide what charges
or if charges will be filed in this case. the family of martin pushing very hard trying to bring all the pressure they can on authorities here to push for murder charges. they say that trayvon martin was not armed and he was not violent, that this should not have happened on a simple walk to a convenience store. but at this point, police are saying that they have heard the 911 tapes where you can hear a verbal altercation and a gunshot. beyond that, we do not know exactly what happened to bring that altercation. but police say what they have heard on that tape does support zimmerman's claim that he felt he was threatened and acting in self-defense. but supporters of trayvon martin and his family are now reaching out. the naacp is now involved and they are asking for the justice department to get involved in this case. david mattingly, cnn, orlando.
head of chief panetta in afghanistan today talking about the citizen who allegedly shot those 16 civilians. we're going to get the very latest there. [ male announcer ] this is lawn ranger -- eden prairie, minnesota. in here, the landscaping business grows with snow. to keep big winter jobs on track, at&t provided a mobile solution that lets everyone from field workers to accounting, initiate, bill, and track work in real time. you can't live under a dome in minnesota, that's why there's guys like me.
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simmer at the murders of women and children allegedly at the hands of a u.s. sergeant. panetta said the u.s. has to learn from their mistakes and soldier on. >> none of this, none of this is reflective of the overwhelming majority of troops, isaf troops, afghan troops, who day after day are doing the job of trying to protect this country. >> i want to go straight to kabul to sara sidner, and sara, i know there was an incident there when the defense secretary arrived? what happened? >> reporter: yeah, it happened in kambashun. when he got on the ground, there was a car apparently stolen. someone had driven that car onto the runway and the person caught fire. we don't know exactly if this is something the person was trying
to threaten mr. panetta or if this was something or someone just decided to steal a car. we do know the person who was in that car, the driver of the car, was apparently a civilian who worked at camp dogson, so there is an investigation going on to find out exactly what happened. we know an isop worker was injured when the car was stolen and brought to the runway. at no time was panetta ever in danger. he also talks to the troops about what the mission is going forward, and he really said, look, it's a transitional one. this is a mission now that really needs to focus on the transition from having u.s. and nato forces in place to having the afghan forces take over and take control of their own country. but while he is saying all this, there were another two incidents that happened, one in the helmand province where he was, very far away from where he was, but that left eight people dead
when there was a roadside bomb that hit a minivan, the bomb so large that they cannot yet identify the people inside of that van. and then you had an incident in kandahar province. this is where on sunday there was a massacre that allegedly involved a u.s. soldier who went on a shooting rampage. there there was a bomb that went off, and a motorcycle as afghan forces were trying to defuse it. so a couple things going on here, but mr. panetta said it's not going to change the mission in any way, that they will soldier on. >> sara sidner, we appreciate it in kabul. thank you. tide. people are stealing it. the clothes washing soap, that's the tide i'm talking about. one man admitted stealing $25,000 worth of that stuff. tide is now even being sold on the black market. that story is next. two of the most important are energy security and economic growth. north america actually has one of the largest oil reserves in the world. a large part of that is oil sands.
this got a lot of us talking. what's trending today? tide, specifically liquid tide, the everyday household item has a major black market appeal. we're talking organized heists involving thousands of dollars. this is a guy in minnesota who admitted in court he stole $25,000 worth of the stuff from a walmart. so why tide? let's ask chris moran. he's deputy editor of consumers.com with some answers. gold, diamonds, even copper wire, i've heard all of that, but tide? why? >> i think it has to do with the fact that a lot of people have been saving money by purchasing generic or really low-cost detergent over the last few years, and suddenly if you have
the opportunity to trade or to acquire an expensive detergent, a top line detergent, a recognizable name brand like tide for significantly less than what it costs at retail, you're going to do it. if i see somebody selling it for $3 on the corner, i'm going to be very temtd pted to buy sometg worth 20 at the grocery store. >> this guy took $25,000 worth. it's not like it's light, it's heavy. are they just walking out of the stores in the -- i'm blanking. >> they say he literally loaded up his cart and he would just walk out the doors with it, and he stole $25,000 worth over several months. meanwhile, there are also people stealing it out of the back doors of grocery stores and walmarts and places like that where you either know somebody on the inside or you just walk in the back door pretending
you're an employee and walk outweigh hand truck full of the stuff. >> one of the articles i read in consumers u.s., you guys were calling it black gold, it's that valuable. it's not just tide, we have a whole list. this is a list you've compiled, sort of a top five of what's hot for thieves right now. just running through it, you have fresh meat, candy and chocolate, cheese, baby formula, spices and seasonings. fresh meat? you have to turn that around pretty quickly or people are just stealing it for themselves. >> i think it's probably most people are stealing it for themselves, but i'm sure there are some people, you know, who are going in and stealing top end meat, stealing filet mignons and porterhouses and selling something that's $28 a pound for just a few bucks or trading it for some drugs or for whatever else. i could easily see that happening. >> wait, wait, wait. you said trade it for drugs? are people doing that?
>> i mean, some people have speculated that's what's happening with the tide fest, is that they're just being traded to drug dealers who are like, whatever, i don't have to spend money on detergent this week now, or i can go and resell it for a couple bucks extra. it's all profit. it's currency. these are things people want and they're things people can't afford, so it's currency. >> i knowcheese, i read that is the number one hot commodity abroad, people are stealing cheese. why? >> i think it's because cheese -- when i was growing up, cheese was white american and yellow american and maybe swiss. now you don't even see cheap cheese on the store shelves anymore. it's all expensive, but people still want it. and in these tough times, unlike the mortgage payment which you shouldn't skip but you can skip because it can take up to two or three years to get foreclosed on and kicked out of your house,
you're going to starve in a few days if you don't eat. so if someone is down on their luck and down on their last dollar, they're going to steal the cheese. >> next time i go grocery shopping, i'm going to be taking a good look at the fresh meat and cheese aisle just to see if people have a good look at it. next minnie driver sits down with me to talk about her new movie. what is it about your love of music, and you are a teacher, i understand you're helping some of the young actors when the cameras aren't rolling. >> there is a young actor right over there. >> is she a great teacher? >> no comment. >> also take a look at this.
stan simon inside a video game store in california to talk about this crazy booming industry that's dishing out six-figure salaries. video games! that's next. es another laptop bag or hires another employee, it's not just good for business, it's good for the entire community. at bank of america, we know the impact that local businesses have on communities. that's why we extended $6.4 billion in new credit to small businesses across the country last year. because the more we help them, the more we help make opportunity possible.
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enough, i prescribe crestor. adding crestor lowers bad cholesterol by up to 52%. and is also proven to slow plaque buildup. >> announcer: crestor is not right for everyone. like people with liver disease or women who are nursing, pregnant or may become pregnant. simple blood tests will check for liver problems. tell your doctor about other medicines you're taking or if you have muscle pain or weakness. that could be a sign of a rare but serious side effect. >> is your cholesterol where your doctor wants? ask your doctor if crestor is right for you. >> announcer: if you can't afford your medication, astra zeneca may be able to help. . there is an industry right here in america worth billions of dollars. it employs thousands, its salaries hitting near six figures. it is growing and growing quickly and it might surprise you. what am i talking about? video games. from angry birds to call of duty, the gaming industry is
hotter than ever. dan simon goes in depth for us today. >> nearly 20,000 people rolled into san francisco last week to see the latest trends in video games. according to the industry, it's a $50 billion business, bigger than the music industry, bigger than hollywood. for aspiring programmers, the future has never looked better. in fact, those who design games can expect to earn an average of about $90,000 a year. why so big? because a single game like madden football can earn a company billions of dollars in revenue. >> we're not a $50 billion industry by coincidence or by mistake. this is something that ties into what people want to do cht they want to dictate the outcomes, they want to have interactive and engaging experiences with the content. >> nobody has done that better than electronic arts. they have produced other mega hits like tiger woods golf,
soccer and shoot 'em up games like massacre 3. if you want to know why the industry is expanding, just ask anyone on the selling floor who will tell you -- >> it's not the i'm in the closet being weird kind of hobby anymore because it's so accessible. >> thanks to mobile devices and social networking, the video game industry h been on even more of a tear. more platforms means more games, it also means developers can entice more players. think about it. anyone who owns a smartphone is a potential customer. >> if you asked me seven or eight years ago, i would have said the gaming population is 70 million or 80 million people. today i think it's close to 2 billion. >> it's expanded the user base by delivering games digitally weather directly to an xbox,
ipad or on facebook. because many of these games are free, many with cheap add-ones to make the games better, that may explain some of the growth despite the recession. >> the key is for us to take this big funnel that's coming in, maybe it's 2 billion people who say they're a gamer, and provide them the experience they want regardless of price, regardless of time, regardless of platform. >> in the last two years, zynga became a smashing success thanks to farmville and cityville. they're hiring a lot more than just game designers. electronic arts can spend tens of millions to make a hit. but because of the success of games like angry birds, game makers have come to realize it doesn't always take millions to create a stir. just like a low-budget film that becomes a top grosser. at a time when many industries
can't broaden their base, here's one that has grown because of accessibility. that new game, after all, is just one click or download away. and we are in gamestop, which is one of the leading retailers when it comes to console games like call of duty, but this is an interesting number, brooke. it tells you why the industry is growing so much. according to the entertainment software association, 55% of people who consider themselves gam gamers are now playing games on a cell phone or hand-held device. and that number is only going to go up. another interesting number, the average gamer, you would think it would be someone in their teens, the average age of people who play video games, brooke, 37 years old. >> really. are you among that crowd, dan simon? >> you know, brooke, not since the days of sent pacentipede an
can i consider myself a gamer, but angry birds, sure. how about you? >> i don't know anything about angry birds, but thank you, dan, for reporting inside that video game store. i just got back from south by southwest, this awesome film and high tech festival going on. i sat down with minnie driver about a film about to come out. it's about this movie set in the '70s and minnie driver plays this drama teacher trying to make a rock and roll show. here's a clip of the movie and my interview. >> everything else doesn't count. i want to put on a show about shakespeare and i want it to be something to be proud of.
now you're talking. ♪ >> god, that guy can sing. >> yeah, and usuch dreamy eyes. >> explain this thing that david bowie and shakes would be proud of. as viv, what was the crux of the film? >> as a teacher, as an unconventional, quite eccentric teacher, she wants them to connect with the greatest p playwright of all time, and also to tap into the music of that time which she knew also that's the magic of teenagers, is music.