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tv   Americas Newsroom  FOXNEWS  April 16, 2010 9:00am-11:00am EDT

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so great having eric bowling here. >> thanks to you guys. >> have a great weekend. bill: hey guys, thank you, good morning, everybody, a fox news alert, a developing story, controversy surrounding a national tradition, a federal judge ruling that the national day of prayer violates the u.s. constitution, this social security judge barbara kraft, her ruling saying the federal statute violates the first amendment as it relates to the separation of church and state and you say -- can you say appeal? i'm bill hemmer on a friday. martha: good morning, bill, good morning, everybody. i'm martha maccallum. this started with a lawsuit that was brought by atheists and agnostic groups but some key republicans are urging the justice department to immediately file an appeal and this one, folks, very well could make it to the supreme court. bill: at the moment we're awaiting reaction from the justice department. first, caroline shively runs down the story in d.c. what exactly does the ruling
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say, caroline? >> reporter: it says the 1952 law that created the day of prayer constitutes the ban on religion, the suit was brought in wisconsin by a group of atheists and agnostics, brought against president george w. bush but took this long to wind its way through the court. here's what judge grab had to say, i understand some may disagree with the conclusion and consider it a criticism of those who pray, that is unfort. it is not a determination that the message itself is harmful, unimportant or undeserving of dissemination. people on the other side say look, no one is requiring prayer, the government isn't making people go pray, they are just seting this day aside for folks who do want to pray, saying may sixth, that's the national day of prayer. bill: we cover that every year. what does it mean for next month's day of prayer as it stands today based on this ruling, caroline, will it happen? >> it will happen. it looks like things will go on as planned.
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we know from a white house tweet that president obama plans to recognize this year's event. as i mentioned it's on may sixth. last year the president didn't participate in any of the large services butdy send out a proclamation, so no effect on the events this year. bill: how much are we learning about this judge crabb? >> we don't know too much. she has been reviewing this case here, it's been winding its way through the courts for a couple of years now. i don't know her background on here. you could probably surmise from this that she's a pretty liberal judge but i haven't done my due diligence on her background. bill: we'll check that out. will there be an appeal, with very gotten to that caroline? >> the administration has a chance to appeal, nothing takes effect until the appeals are exhausted. the justice department says they're reviewing the case but it certainly would be a shocker if they didn't appeal this. conservative groups are pushing the white house to do this. bill: we're getting e-mails on this. thank you, caroline shively
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leading our coverage out of washington. martha: new reaction from president obama to the tea party movement's tax day rallies that we showed you some of across the united states yesterday, the message from the president, where is the thanks? the president giving his assessment while speaking at a democratic fund-raiser last night. check it out for yourself. >> i've been a little amused over the last couple of days, where people have been having these rallies. about taxes. taxes. you would think they would be saying thank you! [laughter] that's what you'd think! bill the idea, of course, the president says the estimate lum plan cuts tax, doesn't raise them, the president saying the tea party rallies, quote, amused him, speaking to democratic donors in florida, raising $2.5 million for that party, tea party members arguing hard-around money should not be going to fund washington's agenda. let's talk about that with
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a.b. stoddard. good morning to you. he says he was amused. what is your sense of the white house? are they taking the tea party movement seriously or is it publicly that they're getting a bit of a dismissal? >> i mean, they can be amused add a democratic fund-raiser but the white house reads the polls, they know that the tea party is actually not organizing and coalescing around third party candidates and separating out as its own organized movement. it looks at this point like the independents and democrats in the tea party may stay home. largely they are a highly motivated group that is going to vote republican and the white house knows that. they know that that is the real force and a real threat to holding majorities, particularly in the house, in these mid-term elections, and i think that it's fine for him to pass it off in private but they know exactly how potent this is. bill: how does the political spin work when he says the tea party should thank me? >> well, president obama is feeling a little defensive
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because he has not raised taxes and it is indeed the truth that the stimulus package included more than $200 billion in tax relief that republicans wanted and that the president hoped during the negotiations over that legislation would bring in republican support. as you know, it did not. yes, now, we have health care reform, it's been signed into law, you could call the mandate as many people will to purchase health insurance attacks, there's also medicare payroll taxes, these have not taken effect but they will, and obviously if the democratic party really wants to wrestle with deficits and debt, there's a very high chance there are going to be tax increases in the years to come. so he knows that the protests and the movement is angry over larger government, the overreach of government and the coming taxes but he's saying right now they should be thanking me because it hasn't happened yet. bill: it was a turnout yesterday.
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dozens of places all across the country, too. a.b. stoddard, thank you, from washington, as we run that down the day after. six minutes past, here's martha. martha: in other big news, president obama ordering sweeping changes at hospitals across the country to give gay and lessan long-term partners the same visitation rights aas married heterosexual couples. the president september a memo to the health secretary ordering these changes in hospitals that receive medicare and medicaid funding. that is nearly all of the hospitals in this country. these new rules are going to make it easier for gay and lesbians to make medical decisions on behalf of their partners. we've got a live report coming up later in the hour. now this fox news alert for you with regard to the economy, folks, housing construction is the number we got this morning, it posted a better than expected performance in march, the commerce department just released these new numbers, construction rose 1.6% up in march, housing starts at the highest levels since november 2008. a lot of questions around that, but this number is
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only a snapshot of the housing market that overall is showing no real signs of improvement. foreclosures, as we told you yesterday, are still rising, and the bill to taxpayers as a result of all that, that keeps rising, too. this topic is kind of like a skunk at a garden party. nobody seems to want to notice it. that's according to fox business network's stuart varney, fresh from the garden party himself. always good to have stuart with us. we talk about jobs, we're looking at the economy every time, everybody want it is to improve, but you say that housing is skunking around the party here. >> it is. look, it's the forgotten crisis, it is the forgotten bailout, yet it affects i believe just as many people as are jobless in america. as you said, martha, you've got 367,000 foreclosures in the first quarter of this year. we have an unlimited federal government bailout that was passed by the way on christmas eve. taxpayers are on the hook for many of those
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foreclosures. the administration's rescue plan for mortgages is a failure, and get this, 10 percent of america's prime home mortgage borrowers are delinquent. we're not talking subprime. we are talking prime borrowers, delinquent, 10 percent of them, never been there before, and yet, this is not on the political or even the economic front burner. it's overshadowed by health care, by jobs, by corporate profits. it's on the back burner politically. that's rather strange. martha: so all this stuart leads to having a lot of inventory on the housing market, right, and now we've got home starts going up, so they're building more houses. >> yes, you've just referred to a 1.6% increase in the number of new homes on which construction has begun. that means, as you say, you're adding to the supply of homes on a market that's already de luged with these foreclosed homes and houses that we've already built which are not being sold. you literally have millions of unsold houses on the
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market, the housing starts number of today simply adds to that number in terms of inventory. martha: stuart, thank you, thank you for being the skunk at the garden party this morning! good to have you here, sir. bill: he's kind of used to that, isn't he? love stuart, right, but in the past two years, this guy has been -- he has these headlines every day! a little something in your stocking over the weekend, hey? see you, stuart. a volcano eruption out of iceland, believe it or not, now includes a health warning for those on the ground all over europe. the world health organization, urging people in europe to stay indoors if ash starts raining down from the sky, especially if they have breathing problems already. the flight disruptions, the cancellations, they're going to get even worse today. at least 60 percent of scheduled flights possibly canceled because of concerns about visibility and the ash particles that could damage the plane engine. officials in poland also concerned about the effect
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of world leaders set to arrive in southern poland over the weekend for the funeral of the polish president after that disaster last weekend. a bit later we'll talk with a pilot who knows a thing or two about flying through volume volcanic ash, why this can be such a serious threat, they're noil taking it lightly. martha: they have taken their inspiration from the 1994 republican sweep to power but they're giving it a bit of a twist, this from tea party activists who are laying out what they're calling a contract from america this time around, what they say should be the top priorities of a representative government. very interesting stuff. bill bell you want to fly by the seat of your pants? hang on here, that is before everything goes horribly wrong. an accident at greater than 200 miles an hour. you'll see it. martha: we're not done with the water crashes yet. look at this one! a pickup truck, right into the back yard family pool, and believe it or not, this is not the first time it's happened at this house.
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you say lightning doesn't strike twice? maybe pickups do! >> ♪ >> ♪
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martha: hold on to your seats, forget and maybe your stomach, too, you are about to see what a crash into a river looks like for this small plane, a camera was mounted on the back of this plane. try to imagine yourself going along for this ride, folks. it's call on tape, the incredible picture showing this plane right before impact, and then hitting the water. look at that! that's an interesting angle. it's not horizontal, it's not vertical, it's sort of in between. it happened in australia during a practice session for a race. now, i'm being a little light about this because we know the braz -- we know the brazilian pilot suffered only minor injuries. he scrambled out of the water, they pulled the pilot out in under a minute from
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crash time to him getting out of there, he survived, as i said w. minor injuries, the race features competitors from around the world, they fly inflatable pylons, at speeds of up to 250 miles an hour, bill. pretty fast. bill: don't try that at home! remember the contract with america, 1994, republicans issued this if they became majority party. now there's a contract from america, released by members of the tea party movement on what it wants from washington, a few highlights now, it's calling on lawmakers to pledge to advocate on behalf of individual liberty, it asks for limited government, administrator justice and safety -- safety for national security and a free market economy. matt kibe, from the advocacy group and good morning to you. i think we talked to awe few months ago. >> yes. bill: fundamentally what is the difference between your contract today and what was launched in 1994, would you
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say? >> i think it very much reflects the ethos of the tea party movement, meaning it's coming from the people to the political class in washington d.c. and in 1994 you had a few really brave republicans sort of take over the republican caucus and offer this contract to the american people, so that was an inside game. this is an outside game, where the people are saying we don't trust anybody in washington, and we are going to define the terms by which you govern this country. bill: so you went out and you asked for the input of regular americans all across the country? and you put together what amounts to i think a top ten list of their priorities. and you reflect. i just want to go through four of them, quickly, okay? number two, reject cap and trade regulation of climate warming gases. you know already the senate is set to move ahead with this in two weeks or so. can you stop it? >> i think we can stop it, and i think there are a lot of democrats that are going to join republicans in
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opposition to what amounts to a massive tax increase on every working american. every american that heats their home, every american that drives to work. very contrary to what the president suggested last night, by the way. bill: we're going to debate that next hour, exactly that point, too, whether or not they can get the moderates to come on board and whether or not they can stomach it, given the hangover of health care. number four on your list is enact fundamental tax reform. now, i thought that would be number one. i mean, it's the tea party after all. what are the specific proposals for tax relief do you see? >> i think that what we're united around is -- and there's another plank, by the way, that's pretty important as well, which is stopping the massive tax increases that president obama is proposing. but what we have to do is get rid of the byzantine tax code and replace it with something that's fair and honest. there are various ways to do that but it's important that everybody in america understands they're paying their fair cent but not a
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cent more than their fair share and right now nobody trusts the code or the irs or the federal government is implementing this in a just way across all people. bill: you mentioned the tax hikes, that's actually number ten on your list and again, i thought that would be higher based on what i've heard about the tea party movement. number seven is repeal, replace government-funded health care. how likely, that realistic is that, de fund, we're hearing, but repeal? >> i think there's -- you're not going to be able to do it wholesale, you're going to have to do it in pieces and frankly, you should replace bad policy with good policy, but i do think that we need to go after this individual mandate, which is such a massive tax burden on young people that don't necessarily want to, can't necessarily afford, the expensive mandated health care benefits that the president is now insisting they purchase. we have to unravel that and frankly, the government has no business telling whaws
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kind of health insurance we should be buying. bill: this is something that will be debated at least for the next six months as we go into november and we'll bring you back with someone else from the other side and we'll go at it, okay, because these are important issues for americans to talk about, debate, to discuss, and we'll continue the discussion here. matt kibbe out of washington, thank you. martha: congress was working late last night and signed another extension of unemployment benefits. they're going to go through early june now. and some are wondering if this is going to become endless in some cases for some who have stopped looking for work. we're about to show you how much that move will cost you, because as we've been showing you all week on your big calculator, it's your phone, folks, and we're -- your money, forget and we're going to show you how much it's going to cost you. a big truck made a big splash in a back yard! bill: they call that adult swim! the maybes say it doesn't surprise them because it happens all the time. really! martha: not that again!
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bill: everybody in the pool in houston! bring your pickup truck along the way. that driver, losing control and driving right through the back yard fence at a home and police are now investigating how in the world this happened because the neighbors say it's not the first time. the driver managed to swim away unhurt. i don't know if you have to really swim away! honestly. police -- martha: think he got out and said i'm going to swim to the shallow end for the heck of it? >> bill: watch me now, people! neighbors said it's not the first time a car has veered off the road and gone into the swimming pool, which is a pretty good reminder to the owners of that home they might want to move! martha: it will probably never happen again. what are the ads, right? last night president obama signed an extension of jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed.
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it passed over a lot of debate in congress over how they're going to pay for it but regardless of that debate, you know where it all comes from, right, it all comes out of your tax dollars ultimately. did you ever wonder when you hear these things how much it's going to cost you personally, if you break it down to every taxpayer, what you're paying for this? william la jeunesse broke it down for us. >> reporter: if you lose your job you're eligible for 26 weeks of unemployment benefits from the government. that's usually not a whole lot, maybe a few hundred a week but collectively it does cost a lot of money. now, since the president took office, congress has voted four times to extend unemployment benefits, at a cost of $62 billion. yesterday, it extended those payments another 60 days at a cost of 14 billion. now, critics say that the longer you're off, the longer the benefits, and republicans wanted the added cost to be offset by budget cuts elsewhere, but democrats said the benefits are an emergency that
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require new dollars. that means more debt. what do you think? and how much is this costing you? you have the numbers and tax -- on taxpayer calculator on the results vary dramatically by income. this is amazing. as you see there, if you're making 15,000 or under, it's about three bucks, it you -- if you make 30-50, it's $100, if you make 100, to 200, it's $700. look at that, if you make over $250,000, top wage earners are going to pay $7500 for this bill. now, two more programs that we're looking at today, martha. one is the so-called carbon tax, the cap and trade bill passed under the house, under consideration in the senate and the other was a $100 billion jobs bill also in the house, and this one is basically subsidies to cities and states to save union jobs. martha. martha: wow, that is incredible. you know, so william, everybody is find this information right on
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>> yeah, and you know what? we've already had a million people log on this week. bill: whoa! martha: a million? >> yes, a million. now, when we started this, i was really worried that everyone was going to say no to everything, because they are concerned about more government spending and higher taxes. i was wrong. yesterday, we had people ask about the president's plan to end nasa's constellation program, basically putting men back on the moon, $3.5 billion, and you know what, 75 percent of the viewers said yes, i want to keep that program. now, contrast that with the $800 billion stimulus bill which costs people a lot of money, basically, you know, from $30 or up to $100,000, depending upon your income, and voters said overwhelmingly, 93 percent, said no, we don't like that. what's the point, you guys? in my opinion, it's a tough choice to balance the budget and it's symbolic of the kind of decisions congress is making, why it is so hard and there is gridlock
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because some people want it, some people don't. back to you. martha: wow, that is very interesting. william, thank you very much, great having you in new york this week, by the way. >> great to be here. martha: well, more than -- we said 3/4 of a million but it's actually a million people now have already logged on to the website to check out the tax calculator. you want to find out how much would constellation cost each taxpayer or how much does the extension of job benefits cost you, as we just showed you, log on to, we know you have your computer open while watching tv and you can kind of do this during the smergsal -- commercial break and click on the tax calculator link and it's very interesting. let's make it 2 million! bill: by the end of the day! trying terror suspect necessary civilian court social security a controversial issue with attorney general eric holder. why he says dismissing civilian trials would, quote, seriously harm our national security. we'll talk to jeff sessions, the senator, about that live in minutes.
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martha: some are calling this the biggest human smuggling bus in years -- bust in years, federal agents launching a massive sweep across the desert in arizona. this is a huge operation, folks. you're going to want to know about it. bill the pilots have a lot to deal with, in difficult conditions. how about a volcano. try this one on. why the pilot cannot simply fly through this, because it is, after all, your safety.
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martha: america's top law enforcer says some terrorists simply must be tried in civilian court, last night air o'clock holder explaining why he's against new legislation that would mandate the use of military commissions for all terror trials. here's mr. holder last night. >> it would be a disservice to the history of our civilian justice system. there is no question that if such a plan advances it would seriously harm our national security. martha: all right, well for more reaction on this we're joined by republican senator jeff sessions of alabama, he's the ranking member on the senate judiciary committee. senator sessions, good to have you here today. >> thank you, nice to be with you. martha: what's your response to what the attorney general just said? >> well, i think he continues to be in denial about the real issues in this case, and talking about different -- we're talking about different things. fundamentally, when a terrorist is arrested, they should be taken into military custody and held
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after a period of time, they can be tried in civilian courts or military courts, but if they're treated and presumed to be treated as he favors, as a civilian criminal, then they are entitled to a lawyer immediately, they are entitled to a speedy trial, entitled to discovery, and then entitled to many other things that make the situation very difficult. there's no question these people should be presumed to be taken to military custody first. martha: well, there's a difference, obviously, between foreign citizens and u.s. citizens and the way they're handled. he's talking specifically about anwar al-awlaki who we would very much like togate our hands on, who is believed to have connections to both hasan and the fort hood shootings and also to the christmas eve attempted bombing of an airline. he's saying if you don't try someone like him in civilian court, you're going to limit yourself in terms of the kind of offenses that you're
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allowed to charge him with. >> look, you can try people i -- i think the option should be there, but the problem is that they are treating these people upon arrest as a civilian, giving them all the civilian rights instead of taking them into military custody. i think an option for most of the cases should be maintained where you can choose which court to try them in and that's really not the point, except with regard to some legislation, i believe that has been offered, that would say that if you are part of the 9/11 conspiracy group, those cases should be tried in military commissions. there may be a dispute over that question. martha: right, i hear what you're saying. let's change subjects for a moment because i also want to get your thoughts on what's going to begin today, round one is today, in the beginning of the process of the nomination for san francisco-based appeals court for law professor goodwin liu and i know
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there's been a lot of opposition to this, a lot of people feel he's too liberal, that he looks at the constitution in too fluid a way. lay out for us if you would what your thoughts are on this nomination. >> i believe the american people strongly believe that judges should be neutral umpires and not policy set ters, to enforce the law and the constitution as it's written. this professor is probably one of the leading intellect ual lights, he's 39, he's young, he's never practiced law, he's never tried a case, but he's written a lot, and his ideas are at the very forefront of the idea that judges are empowered to reinterpret the meaning of the words of the constitution and even the text to make it -- update it to what they think it should say today and that's a threat to democratic government because these judges are lifetime appointees, they're not accountable to the applicable and i don't think that's a healthy thing for america and i don't think the american people do. martha: before you go, tell
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me why americans should pay attention to this proceeding and what bearing it may have on the coming supreme court decision and hearings. >> well, this is an appointee by president obama, professor liu's record and philosophy are well-known, he's in the forefront of judicial activism in his legal theories, so it does indicate perhaps how the president thinks about these issues and it could suggest that we'll have that kind of nominee for the supreme court. and we are in a national discussion about which direction our courts will take, and it's decisive for our future. martha: senator sessions, good to have you with us today. we know there's a lot of republican support for goodwin liu, we're going to watch this procedure carefully and it's always good to have you with us. >> thank you. bill: he's another headline, president obama ordering most hospitals in america to honor visitation rights to gay and lessan members,
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saying same sex partners must get the same privileges as married couples. melanie wilkes is whot the -- is at the white house. >> this allows patients to say who has visitation rights and who can make medical decisions for them and obviously, one community 's group this applies to is gays and lesbians. the president issued this statement last night as he was wrapping up a fund-raiser in miami, it directs the health and human services secretary to draft rules requiring hospitals that receive medicare and medicaid funding, which is most of them, to respect the rights of patients in designating their visitors. of course it could apply to anybody who prefers a close friend say to a family member, but the president did acknowledge that, quote, it uniquely feats gay and best lan -- lesbian americans who are often barred from the bedsides of their partners with whom they may have spent decades of their lives, unable to be there for the person they love or act as a letting surrogate if their partner is incapacitated, bill.
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bill: the reaction so far is what, what are you hearing in washington on this? >> not surprisingly gay activist groups have been pushing the president to act on their issues, the human rights campaign said this was important action, they said discrimination touches every facet of the lives of lesbian, gay and transgender people, including at times of crisis and illness when we need our loved ones with us more than ever. but the family research council takes issue with the idea that hospitals are routinely keeping homosexuals away from their partner. they issued their statement saying that president obama's memo clearly constitutes pandering to a radical special interest group, undermining the definition of marriage, and furthering a big government federal takeover of even the smallest details of the nation's health care. an assistant to the family research council says they do not object to patients deciding who has power of attorney, who can visit them in the hospital. they just feel that this is president obama doing
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political pandering bill. bill: it is developing this morning, malini wilkes is on it. martha: imagine being miles from anywhere and getting bidden by one of these, a rattle snake. a guy in arizona doesn't have to wonder, his story is amazing enough. wait until you hear what put him in this hire situation in the first place. i was in arizona, i was very worried about coming across one of those. bill: were you now! this is in iceland, this grows by the day and the pictures are incredible. in a moment the pilot says the real danger is in what you do not see in pictures like these.
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martha: he thought he was going for western-style adventure but one arizona man got a little more than he bargained forks folks. he was kayaking down a river
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when he ran into rough rapids, he flipped over twice, continued to get stuck and decided he was going to ditch the boat and hike his way out. that's when he ran into one of these, hill -- bill hemmer. bill: i hate those guys! martha: a battle snake bit him and he was 5 miles away from help, his leg was bleeding and he's got rattle snake poison perhaps in his body, so he finally reached an area with traffic and help didn't come too easily, he waited half an hour before a car finally stopped to help. >> nobody would stop! like 100 cars must have went by, trucks and cars, so i was getting kind of disheartened. >> i was pretty luckily in terms of the severity of the rattle snake bite. it was on the mild side. bill: whoa! poor guy. martha: i was in arizona and we went hiking, horseback riding and they say watch out for rattle snakes and i'm thinking what do i do if i see one, what do i do if
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i'm bitten by one. what are you suppose to do if you're bitten by one? send us an e-mail. bill: i hate the strong word, i said it, i apologize, however, i strongly dislike the world of snakes! it's the largest grounding of airline flights since 9/11, we're hearing about routes have been grounded because of this, a volcanic eruption in iceland. want to show you satellite images. there's one of them there. go to the next one. this is march 31st, so that goes back even two weeks. folks, this volcano has been puffing for a while. it's the most recent spewing of volume cannish ash that's causing huge disruptions. what's it like to fly through? actually, that's not what you want to do. t.j. frost can tell us that, international commercial airline pilot, he has a website, d.j. good morning to you. what does this do to a jet
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engine if you're flying through volume cannish ash? >> bill, glad to be back with you. it's almost like you are trying to ride a jet ski through sand or you see people trying to drive a car through a big, flooded, muddy area, it's going to get within the engine, enclosing it up. engines are designed to run with air going through them, not with small rocks or other particles and as you saw last year, with sully and the birds going in the engine, airplanes don't run very well with a what of what they call foreign objects. bill: and airplanes don't make good gliders. >> they don't. bill: this could bring down a plane, right? >> oh, absolutely, and it happened in the 1980s with a british airways plane flying through volcanic ash in the in the philippines, they actually lost all four engines and they became one of the world's largest gliders, in fact they set a new gliding record for a 747, they glided from about 33,000 feet, down to 13,000 feet, before they
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were able to get the engines started miraculously and that's not a record that any pilot wants to set, really. bill: i don't want to be on that flight,et. why can't the pilot fly around this like they do in a thunderstorm? >> the problem is all the clouds look the same, a volcanic cloud, from the naked eye, and a regular cloud. now, my fearful flying clients who i help and they've been asking me a lot of questions like this, the radar, the aircraft is designed to pick up water drop let, not pick up volcanic ash, so that's the problem there, and it's a very densely populated area as far as air traffic goes in the north electric -- north atlantic, so airplanes can't be flying haphazardly because there's no radar coverage out there so it could be a mess, so that's the reason they have to go ahead and shut it down. bill: this is going to be with us until the volcano settles down, i imagine. yesterday we had a guy going up to 55,000 feet in the
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aimplet that's remarkable. >> that's right. and most airplanes' maximum when we're doing a crossing, no more than 36, 38,000 feet, main we because we have a lot of fuel we're carrying and can't get up to any higher alt tiewld and most have a maximum altitude of 40,000 feet, most commercial airliners. bill: there was a case in 19 -- 1989, a klm flight out of amsterdam, a 747, all four engines stalled at about 35,000 feet. it's much like the story you relayed from british airways in the philippines. it did not gain power until it was down to around 10,000 feet. if you're a passenger on board, man, that is one flight you will not forget. d.j. frost, good to have you on today, thank you for your expertise. >> glad to help you out, bill, any time. bill: appreciate it. martha: they're cracking down big time in arizona right now, a human smuggling ring was busted there. hundreds of law enforcement agents cracked down on a massive criminal network. the smugglers helped to move illegal immigrants all over
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the united states of america and they were busted. bill: also videotape getting a lot of attention, the police beating out of chicago, it is on tape, showing the driver of a car receiving multiple blows from a baton. what were the circumstances here, we ask? in three minutes. 
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bill: say hello to all my children. martha: they're all yours? bill: they're all mine. at least for five minutes, anyway. this is the fourth grade class of saint joseph's school at oredale, new jersey. hello and welcome to the fox news channel. what do you think so far, huh? >> good. >> good. you just got here, but you're going to see a lot throughout the day, right, and part of the reason you
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came today was to find out how we do our jobs, right? and what do you want to find out today? >> how you do tv. bill: there you go! do you have a question about that? >> no. bill not yet,. >> not yet, huh. bill: i have a hunch that throughout the day you're going to have a lot more questions, okay? what are you studying today in school? what were your teachers talking about? >> nothing. we just left at the beginning of the day. bill: you did, did you leave your i pod in the class in? you didn't -- in the class? you didn't bring that? or the walkman. walkmans are not cool anymore, huh? you don't even know what one is! who's got a question about how we do our job, how about you right there? >> how do the cameras work? bill: that's a good question. we've got one over there, we've got one right here, see that, look at you! are mom and dad watching? >> yes. bill: that's cool. we've got one over there and over there. that's five, okay? what we'll do is we'll put people on tv or get guests lined up or maybe martha
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will be there and there's a control room, which is the area you'll go in next, they make the decisions on which of the five cameras to put on tv. does that make sense? >> kind of, sort of. bill: kind of, sort of. it's going to become massively clear throughout the day today. what are you guys studying in school, who wants to handle that? my man. when i saw you walk in, i thought this guy, this guy, he's excited to be here. what are you -- what do you study? >> math, and how to measure mass, and -- >> bill: how to measure mass? >> yes. bill: how do you do that? >> i don't know. bill: yeah, i don't know how they pick the camera shots and you don't know how they measure mass. >> nope. bill: okay. i saw a budo -- a buddy, my man over here, what do you have a question about? >> i have a question about how does this all work and we're going to find out today. >> and today is the start, right? i think you're a little more special, because you got a camera. all right? >> i do. at school, we had a project,
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it was called the business report, and we all came in, and as our business, when we grow up, and mine was photography. bill: you don't happen to take like random shots of people walking down the street without them watching, do new. >> i did that on the bus. bill: you're clever. how are they doing today, are they enjoying the tour? >> we're all enjoying it, it's wonderful to be here, a wonderful day for all of us. bill: a quick show of hands, what's better, the classroom at saint joseph's in new jersey or coming here to the fox news channel? >> here! here! here! bill: i tell you -- i told you, you could be all my children, right? all my kids! >> that's a long shot. this is so much better than school! blah blah blah, and being on tv? this is better. bill: you know why school is important? because you learn. and so when you learn, and you learn from your teachers in classroom every day, you can come here and learn even
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more. and now you come ready for your -- it's better, isn't it? >> yeah. bill: i'm not doing well convincing you, am i? >> no. bill: listen, thank you for coming in today, okay, but i got a few more questions for you after the break, all right? is that a deal? and when i come back, i want to know what you're going to take away from your visit today, all right? so think real hard, saint joseph school, what's your mascot, by the way, do you have mascots? >> lancers bill: back with the lancers in three minutes here. thank you for coming in. back in a moment. martha: i feel so much better about the future of our country, just looking at these fine young boys and girls behind me. can you be here every day? just the energy in here from all these great young people -- so just let me tell you folks what we have coming up besides our visit with the terrific young future men and women of new jersey, my home state, so speaking of states, you just paid your local, state and federal tax, right, so brace yourself for this idea.
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just in case you run out of ideas of things to tax. there's a new one. it's called the value added tax. they do it in europe, and we're going to explain exactly what it is and if it could, and they're talking about it, folks, happen here. you get taxed on the way when you make your money, also when you spend it. how about that? back in a minute. and the kids from new jersey, say hi, guys! >> hi! heel pressure. high arches. (announcer) people everywhere are discovering dr. scholl's custom fit orthotic center. backed by foot care scientists, its foot mapping technology identifies the areas you put pressure on then recommends the right orthotic. for locations see right now, walmart has rolled back prices on top lawn carerands like poulan pr brute by briggs & stratton, pennington, scotts and spectracide. along with thousands of others all over the store. it's rollback time!
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bill: martha, i think it's the best idea all day, they should calmbach every day, a studio audience here for "america's newsroom," st. joseph's school, and what will be better than them coming back every day, right. martha: i know. bill: how would you describe what you are seeing so far today. >> >> amazing! >> great! >> so far?
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>> excellent. >> your job to keep everybody in line, all right. >> okay. bill: nicely done, st. joseph's school, thanks for coming in guys, 4th grade, the best grade ever! until you get to 5th grade and 6th grade... idaho... >> idaho! bill: back to you, martha, thanks for come in, everybody. martha: thank you so much, they have been here all morning! martha: all right, folks, that was fun having them here and we welcome them here this morning and let's get back to some of the news of the morning, this is a "fox news alert," a battle is waged over the national day of prayer. and this is becoming a pretty big deal, folks, a federal judge in wisconsin ruling that the annual event is unconstitutional. the day was first established back in 1952. and it's not an exclusively christian event but a group of atheists and agnostics argued it vitals separation of church and state. and they filed a suit, back in
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2008, now the justice department is reviewing the ruling, and we understand the president, seen here at a prayer breakfast in february is still planning to recognize the national day of prayer which falls the first week of every may and we have more on the brewing legal battle coming up later in the hour. all right, turning to your -- economy, now, and your money, as many of you demand the government rein in spending and get the financial house in order, top economists like paul volcker and alan greenspan are now floating the idea, possibility that perhaps what the country needs is another tax, okay? and they argue the u.s. should consider as a way to get ourselves out of the deficit, adopting a european-style, what they call the vat tax, value added tax, and you might find it hard to value added in this! a tax that is based on your consumption and, basically every time you buy something, to help juice up the economy, not only will you help the economy, you'll also get taxed.
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welcome to a brand new hour of "america's newsroom," everybody, i'm martha maccallum. and it is good to have you with us. bill: i'm bill hemmer and i miss the kids already, right? martha: they were great. bill: yesterday the senate overwhelmingly voting against the prospect of implementing the vat tax and the white house also distancing itself from the idea and policymakers argue it could help solve our debt problems, amy kellogg is in london with a closer look at how the vat tax works in the u.k., it is all over europe, amy, hello. >> reporter: people who travel to europe will be familiar with those vat forms that you hand over at the airport. on your way back to the u.s. you get that 17.5% tax back on the shoes, the leather shoes you might have bought in italy or burberry coat you may have purchased in london but for people who live in europe they don't see that tax that is factored into the goods they buy, before the price tag is actually slapped on and i say 17.5%, that is what it is here and it varies across europe and
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iceland is as high as 25.5% and it is something that you pay at least here in the u.k. on all goods and services with exceptions. children's clothes, very basic food items, and some books, but, something that you don't see when you pay the price. it is a tax that is already factored in and some people are concerned that it is something of a sales tax because it changes from time-to-time. bill: and, do people moan and gripe about this, is it possible. >> here as in the u.s., people moan and gripe and criticize and pull apart taxes and tax codes. i think it is popular in the sense that if you buy something for five pounds here, you go to the cash register and it is five pounds, not 6 pounds, 16 cents and it is convenient and people like that aspect of it, but the downside of it, people will say, is that when it started out here, about 40 years ago, it was 10%, and now, bill it is 17.5%, so, you don't see it and i think
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there is always a nervousness when you don't see a tax. sales tax in the u.s., you do see, it's on the receipt. here, it is kind of factored in, so, it is a controversial issue here as well but it has been in place, most major countries, in fact. highly industrialized countries for some time now, bill. bill: amy kellogg on the vat tax. going one direction based on that report -- up! thanks, here's martha now with more. martha: how about those hidden taxes we already have? get this: when you receive your refund check in the mail, you have been hit a little bit more. so you are getting twice hit on that one. you are getting a refund because you were overtaxed and you loaned the government your money, interest-free. did you think of it that way, gerri willis is live in new york city and why is it a mistake to take a refund. >> think of it this way. you overpaid the government, and they are giving you back your
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money and never paid you interest for the privilege of borrowing it. unless you want to be bank of martha or gerri, i suggest go down to the hr department and fill out a new w-4 and adjust your withholding, 78 million americans are getting refunds and guess what? the average refund, $2700, you overpaid the government by a lot. martha: that is such a good point, because, you think people think they'll get it back and it is nice to get the check in the mail down the road and as you rightly point out. it is a great deal for the government and they tap into your money, interest free and what is the better thing to do with your money? >> look, you want to recalculate your withholding if you repay and if you are getting a refund check, here's what you do, you have to save the money. put it away in a retirement fund or a rainy day fund that will cover expenses if you have problems. look at the end of the day, this recession, that is now turning around to a recovery, is not
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over yet. you really have to make sure that you are protected, your family is protected, just in case you loser job, set that money aside and make sure it grows for you so you can use it down the road. martha: good advice, thank you very much. gerrism willis. bill: who knew a volcano could cause so much news, they've extended the flight ban, to 2:00 a.m. local time here in new york overnight tonight and the ash coming out of there and we talked to a pilot about dangers about flying through the ash and it can simply stall the engines. and, bring the plane down. so, hundreds and hundreds of flights, have been cancelled. tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of passengers, throughout western europe have been grounded. we're watching the story, here in "america's newsroom," new alert, 7:00 a.m. local time, saturday morning the ban in place now, at least in the u.k. and we'll see how it travels further east as the weather
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pattern takes the ash over europe. martha: internal e-mails from 2005, have surfaced, out of the cia and they are getting a lot of attention today. they show the former agency head agreeing with the decision to destroy the videotapes of harsh interrogation of a terror suspect. according to the documents, the bush administration was informed only after those videos were destroyed. now, this is why this is so significant. these videos showed interrogators waterboarding gitmo suspects, abu zubaydah, and the e-mails show the cia officers were worried the 92 tapes, would, quote, devastate the agency if they surface and now the fbi is investigating, and you have not heard the last of this, folks. bill: and is gitmo moving, the obama administration drafting new guidelines for the prosecution of suspected terrorists. a draft envisioned a proposed site for a gitmo-style jail in bagram airbase, north of kabul
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in afghanistan. approval of the guidelines is now being delayed by the state department, they are reviewing that and officials are concerned it could encourage more long term detention, we'll see if gitmo moves. martha: her story really gripped so many people. in the country. a young, beautiful teenager who took her own life. authorities say phoebe prince was the victim of unrelenting bullying. and, now the dramatic video of the first school committee meeting since all of this happened. since six of their own teenagers were charged in the case. look at this: >>... i welcome them to do so. >> please, please... >> stop. >> they did not do anything. >> that is wrong. what you are doing is wrong! martha: the man, has been on the show and believes the administrators need to be held
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accountable for what they knew and what they failed to act on. but do we really know the whole story, in three minutes, i will speak with the attorney, who represents one of these six students. who has been accused in the case. bill: also, there were hundreds of documents, now public, in the sexual assault allegation involving nfl star quarterback ben roethlisberger. what those papers now reveal about a night in georgia. martha: and here's one, bill. divine intervention, can it help you get the perfect body. bill: we can pray... martha: i'm been praying for that for a long time. anyway... when we come back. are you receiving a payout from a legal settlement or annuity over 10 or even 20 years? call imperial structured settlements. the experts at imperial can convert your long-term payout into a lump sum of cash today.
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before starting simponi™, your doctor should test you for tb and assess your risk of infections, including fungal infections and hepatitis b. ask your doctor if you've been to a region where certain fungal infections are common. tell your doctor if you're prone to infections, or develop symptoms such as fever, fatigue, cough, or sores. you should not start simponi™ if you have an infection. [ female announcer ] ask your rheumatologist about simponi™. just one dose, once a month. bill: developments surrounding the american convicted for murder, italian prosecutors pushing for life in prison for amanda knox, the american college student serving 26 years after the conviction of brutally killing her roommate and the
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most knox and her boyfriend, convicted of stabbing a woman to death. prosecutors now filing an appeal, seeking to increase the sentence, due to, quote, aggravated circumstances, and they believe the murder had no motive and that meredith kircher was killed in a drug craze and they are appealing the conviction that sent her to jail for 22 years. martha: now a case we have been following closely, the tragic case of phoebe prince. now, as you may remember, she is a massachusetts teenager, she took her own life in her home, after what prosecutors called an unrelenting case of bullying. that drove her to this. that is the contention here and let's imagine what life was like going to school every day for young phoebe prince, he was from ireland, a new student at the school, and, there was, you know, 6 teenagers who were involved and the case has caused
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-- you can imagine. what life is like in this small town now, in south hadley, massachusetts, emotions are running high and some teenagers have been accused, some school administrators, have been accused, they are saying you were complicit and should have known and pulled the kids out of school and it wouldn't have happened and emotions are running very high and let's look at a board meeting that happened, this week, and had some -- with regard to this event: >> many officials, statesmen including the governor of the state of massachusetts have examined the information at hand, and concur that it is now -- >> hang on, hang on. hang on one second. stop! >> that is a lie. >> i think it is time for you to sit down -- >> excuse me, sir, i was interrupted. >> no, no, no. >> strike it from the record. >> rightfully so. >> you are disputing the record and allow me to continue. >> no, you're done. who else would like to speak, this is not your first amendment right. you are here as a guest of the school committee and your first
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amendment right... go on the street and talk to whoever wants to talk to you. please leave. >> yes, sir. [applause]. martha: a little tough to tell from the back and forth. in the moment what is discussed but the reason there is so much heat back and forth is because he is a parent of another child, at the school and has been out spoken, he believes that the administrators they're ones that -- at fault and the situation, the vulnerability of the young girl was brought to their attention and they refused to acknowledge it and didn't do what they should have done which was to take the students harassing her and suspend them and take serious action against them and he's speaking out about that. and, you see there is a lot of increased tension in that entire town and the result was he was thrown out of the meeting during the discussion and i want to bring your attention to one of the six teenagers, who has been accused in this case, okay? this is a picture of 16-year-old
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sharon velasquez, one of the 6 teenagers who pled not guilty to charges. the charges against them include: stalking, civil rights violations, and for two boys involved in this case, those charges include statutory rape. the court also has to consider, of course, these other young people. and how all of this is impacting their lives because the facts about all of this are not out and we have to acknowledge that. this young girl's attorney says her life has been completely torn apart, as a result of the tensions in the town and colleen keith is sharon's attorney and we are glad to have him with us. we have not heard much of this side of the story. mr. keith, welcome, good to have you here this morning. >> good morning. martha: in general when people hear the story there is not a lot of sympathy for the six children, especially given the fact that the prosecution believes that they contributed to phoebe prince's decision to take her own life.
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what do you say about that? >> i am remind -- remind the public and ask everyone to remember the fact that my client has pled not guilty and at this point there has not been any evidence, formal evidence in this case, and i understand, human nature and everybody can be quick to jump to conclusions. especially when you have only heard one side of the story. but i would suggest there will be another story, another side of the story, i expect there will be another side of the story that will reveal itself, at the appropriate time, through the proper evidentiary rules. martha: you believe your client is innocent in this case? >> i -- yes. i maintain my client's innocence and i believe through the judicial process, that she will be cleared of these charges. martha: all right, you know, one can only imagine, you know, what it is like -- she's not going to school these days, right?
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>> at this time, she is not going to school. martha: because she's not allowed to go to school? is she suspended or because it is too difficult for her to go there? >> she has been suspended. and i can't really get into any other details, other than to simply say that she is -- she's not being tutored. she's receiving home education. martha: the accusations teachers brought against your client include her yelling epithets to phoebe prince in the hallway and bringing her to tears and threatening to punch her in the face. did she do those things to your knowledge? >> well, i would love... i certainly would like to be able to comment on specific facts and specific allegations, in this case, i certainly, the public wants to know. our side of that. unfortunately, i'm not able to talk about the facts at this time. or get into specific details,
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because as a lawyer we need to ensure everything goes through the proper, appropriate channels of criminal procedure and evidence. martha: you know... >> therefore... martha: i know that you are very concerned -- you know, everybody has to kind of take a deep breath in this case and sit back and look at what happened because it has such large ramifications. all across this country, there are situations where kids are being bullied. and, nobody ever anticipates that that is going to lead to someone taking their own life. god forbid. so, in this case, this is the first time, that we have seen teenagers who are accused of this, actually go to court, they could do jail time. as a result of what happened here. if the court can prove their actions led to what phoebe prince did that day. in her home. what do you think the ramifications, the broader ramifications are, of this case, mr. keefe? >> well, i think, eventually, i think you are probably going to
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see a whole new line of legislation, throughout the states, some already have some for what they call anti-bullying laws and there are no anti-bullying laws as of now in massachusetts. and i think you'll see constitutional precedent set. and i have concerns there will be long term repercussion and i can only speak for my client. in her family -- and her family, as to the community, of western massachusetts, of hadley, as to what is going on right now, and, all of these pre-conclusion that have been made. martha: life is extremely difficult for your client and her family right now? >> yes, my client has been experiencing significant, very concerning, alarming threats through all various sources. i obviously can't comments on specifics. martha: mr. keefe, thank you very much for coming, we're about to get cut off. thank you very much, we hope you
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will keep us posted on the case as it moves forward. good to have you with us. >> thank you very much. bill: there was a judge ruling the national day of prayer violates the constitution. is it a tradition about to be stopped by a court? in three minutes. welcome to progressive. nice calculator. i'm just trying to save money on my car insurance. you know, with progressive, you get the option to name your price. is that even possible? uh, absolutely. trade? and i still get great service? more like super great. oh, you have a message. "hello." calculator humor. i'll be here all week. i will -- that was my schedule. the freedom to name your price. now, that's progressive. call or click today.
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martha: coming across the wires, news that darrell gates, the los angeles police chief who you all remember, from the l.a. riots in 1992, has died. we are just getting word of that, of course, you know, he came to national attention during those riots and we all remember the beating of rodney king. it eventually led to darrell gates leaving his police career after many, many years. and, word coming across the wires now, that darrell gates, former police chief of los angeles at the age of 83, passed away. bill: what a time in american history. if you are waging a battle
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against the bulge, is it possible to pray off the pounds? i hope! a number of church related groups offering faith based weight loss programs and lauren green is checking that out today from our new york newsroom. what gives here? >> reporter: you know, bill, focusing on a higher power is helping more and more people shed pounds and, find a deeper faith and mary ann as shocked and looked at herself at -- at the photo at 5'2" she weighed 200 pounds and enrolled in the program called "the light way" and within a year-and-a-half lost 72 pounds. >> we all benefit -- the real benefit is that if you truly -- like i feel, that if you truly surrender and ask god for your help, that nothing is impossible that he can't do for you.
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>> the mother of six, who came up with the program wanted to solve her own weight problem and combining scripture and scientific research lost 100 pounds on the program and dieters, they eat what they want but look to god to help them restrict the diet and the light way program has chapters in several parts of the country. >> people have been going to food for emotional reasons. trouble in their lives. trouble, you know, old wounds from the past and so, when we learn to go to god, for what we have been going to food for, a transformation begins to take place, in our hearts. and, so, that is really what happens... >> reporter: and this light way is one of several faith based diet programs, emerging the last few years and some have dietary restriction and others, ways to overcome the tempations, and nutritionists say they have a
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benefit and incorporate lifestyle changes, key to any diet's effectiveness but it is a good idea to talk to your doctor before you start any diet program, bill. bill: in the name of the father... i want to get to 180! please! martha: amen, brother! bill: this weekend, amen, thanks. martha? martha: are you ready for the next great washington battle? it is back, folks. remember cap-and-trade? you will start hearing about it again. because the legislation is taking shape, as we speak. in congress. and, we're told that it is being written, behind closed doors. bill: how about that. martha: ever hear of that happening? fair and balanced debate. bill: and bad news is getting worse for travellers, how travellers in the u.s. are going nowhere fast because of the stuff, right there. >> nobody tells you anything, they said they'd come down and tell us within the hour and nobody came down and told us anything until the next day. @ú÷ [ female announcer ] sometimes you need tomorrow
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least, more than half of all the scheduled flights are possibly cancelled, due to visibility concerns up there and we have heard the stories of, you know, in the past, these kinds of things, engines have shut down and safety concerns are real about the situation and david lee miller joins us from the newsroom in new york city and where planes are not leaving airports for europe, right, david. >> indeed you are right, martha, let's say viewers who are watching us this morning, in an airport lounge, planning to travel to europe, better get comfortable, and there is a good chance they'll be in those airports, for at least a few more hours, possibly a few more days and the situation now is that the cloud has caused a ripple effect around the world. the number of transatlantic flights to europe, today, out of the normal 300 that land in europe, today, only 120 made it. at least 17,000 flights within europe, to europe, have been cancelled to date and have a laundry list i'll take you through, some of the countries affected. no particular order, britain, ireland, france, denmark, norway, sweden, finland,
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belgium, poland and germany and underscoring how serious the problem is, the romstein u.s. air force base in germany at this hour, has been shut down because of the volcanic cloud. martha: wow. how long does it take for it to dissipate? i mean, you know, how long will it be a problem in the skies? >> one industry insider told me it is essentially a moving target. in britain, air traffic control officials say the airports will remain shut down until at least 1:00 a.m. saturday morning and this is a problem that many believe is going to persist for the next several days and possibly the next several months, on and off and it all depends on the weather and the jetstream and this is something that is changing, really, minute by minute, hour-to-hour, they are watching this cloud of ash, martha, as it moves in a southeasterly direction and it changes and disperses in a different way and minute-to-minute the situation is changing quickly. i'll let you know, that today, a
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number of airports were open in france as well as ireland, the situation briefly changed, but is something influx and you need to check with your carrier. martha: mother nature is a powerful force and this is an incredible story, something to watch, david lee miller, thank you very much. bill: who knew. martha: yes. bill: who considered that. martha: the car driving done the highway and it is plowing... looks like snow. bill: good things, it is going east, not west. it would be here. it is back... the old cap-and-trade debate. there is a new report saying a group of senators are getting ready to introduce a bill within the next two weeks, after health care now, some are asking if lawmakers are ready to go there. let's debate it, a former jeb busch spokesperson out of florida, justin, and doug shone and a lof of it comes down to democrats. >> we don't know what the bill
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will do and what the precise terms are, it is good that it is bipartisan, but we are talking about jobs, taxes and gas prices and any combination of those, going up, and employment going down, could spell problems for the bill and arguably... bill: you are kind of 50/50 on this, not quite sure? >> i think, it is too early to say until we see the legislation. >> justin what, do you say based on your read from florida. >> it is politically reisky for the democrats to push hard on this, especially after what we saw happen with health care reform and i understand in their hearts the democrats and liberal wing of the democratic party want to get cap-and-trade done. but i think in their heads, they know they can see the poll numbers and see president obama's approval ratings, dropping like a rock. and, i think they know there is political peril for them in november, especially if they put another cap-and-trade bill that will create a burden on the american economy, at a time when unemployment is still in double digits. bill: here's what we understand.
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the house passed it a year ago and the senate said we will not touch that thing and now on the senate side you have senators lindsey graham, and joe lieberman, teaming up with john kerry. doug, if you get those three guys together can they bring enough moderates along the way to get something like this passed . >> that is the big question. i think the coalition is a good one. the real issue is just -- as justin suggested is what are the implications for the economy, jobs and taxes, health care will mean higher taxes, and the budget deficit will almost certainly mean higher taxes. i don't think the president is going to want to take a risk. nor the democrats in the senate. take a risk of another big tax increase, being proposed. on the -- in the wake of the election. bill: justin that is a democrat talking there. >> you can hear... do you agree? >> doug is a savvy democrat and i think understands the political realities the democratic party is facing now and some of the polls we have seen in recent days show the
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congressional generic ballot showing republicans ahead of democrats on the congressional generic ballot polling and that is a real risk and i think what is key here is, if they can get bipartisan support, if the democrats can get senator graham, get other republican senators to get on board with this i think that will be enough, perhaps, to give some of those moderate democrats with tough re-election campaigns, especially in the senate, this november, as a -- >> i'll throw another wrinkle into the mess, coming off health care and financial regulation being tossed around on the hill. what do the midwestern congress members, doug, think about this? ohio, west virginia, kentucky. they could take a hit. >>s it was instructive to me all the while you have lindsey graham and joe lieberman saying they'd like to do a compromise and one of the most liberal members of the senate was saying
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wait' minute and i don't know they'll bring along potentially vulnerable midwestern senators, and house members, to endorse a new compromise, in the wake of legislation, that, for their states could be job killers and economy wreckers. bill: justin, one last word before we wrap it up. justin? >> no, absolutely i'll agree. look, here's the other risk. jobs is the number one priority of the american voters, they want to see congress and the president focusing on growth and jobs and for senators with tough re-election battles this is a nonstarter because of the impact it could have on jobs in their state. bill: doug, thanks for coming in and justin, welcome to our program, "america's newsroom." come on again. >> thanks. bill: have a good weekend. martha. martha: police officers accused of a brutal beating caught on video by the cruiser dashboard camera. a warning, some of you may find it difficult to look at. prosecutors charged a suburban chicago police officer with abusing the motorist, despite
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indications that he complied with the officer's demands. and the 15-year veteran is charged after hitting the 28-year-old driver according to the videotape, 15 times with his baton in late march and he faces 2-5 years in prison if convicted on these charges, and the driver was hospitalized, and was treated for a concussion. bill: new details emerging about the sexual assault allegation, with the nfl quarterback ben roethlisberger, and the georgia bureau of investigation, releasing hundreds of pages of the case on file including the statement made piet accuser. she's a 20-year-old college students telling police that he encouraged her to drink numerous alcoholic shots and then she said one of his bodyguards escorted her down a hallway, where roethlisberger exposed himself. and she said, quote i told him it was not okay. i went to the first door which happened to be a bathroom, end quote. and roethlisberger allegedly followed her there and sexually
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assaulted her. that was her claim, a district court judge since said the allegations cannot be proven and the accuser no longer wishes to prosecute. watch for action on behalf of the steelers or the nfl. that is what is going on, with that story. martha: all right, a tradition that goes back more than half a century. really, but now the national day of prayer has been ruled unconstitutional. is it? we'll talk with an attorney about that. bill: have you ever seen an escape like this before? in front of hundreds of witnesses, broad daylight. great video. we'll tell you how he got out and what he was in there for in the first place, in minutes. [ music playing, indistinct conversations ] the charcoal went out already?
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[ sighs ] forget it. [ male announcer ] there's more barbeque time in every bag of kingsford charcoal. kingsford. slow down and grill.
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>> good morning i'm jane skin, we'll see you at the top of the hour, schools are under pressure to crack down on bullies and one school thought it had a good idea and made a list of bullies. and the parents found out, and it didn't seem like a good idea. we'll explain.
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>> also thousands of people saw the blinding light in the sky, the other night. well, guess what? like the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, there could be money at the end of that meteor. it could make someone very wealthy. we'll tell you how, coming up, "happening now." bill: you have to see that in 16 minute, best video of the day, one of thailand's most wanted opposition leaders making a daring escape from police and he did it in broad daylight, some challenge, huh, using rope hanging off the side of a hotel, the escape looked easy, actually and the latest in the confrontation between anti-government protesters and the currents prime minister on a serious note, 24 people so far died in bangkok, in these recent clashes, since saturday. that man... he's free. martha: big story today as the national day of prayer is coming under fire, in a court decision that was released today. the u.s. district judge barbara crabb declared the national day
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of prayer unconstitutional. and the ruling coming in a case filed by the religion from freedom -- freedom follow pre-listpre religion, excuse me, i should say and the case may go all the way to the supreme court and the chief counsel for the american center for law and justice, jay, welcome back, good to have you here today. i want to read something from an ap account of the story, it says the u.s. district judge, barbara crabb wrote the government can no more enact laws supporting a day of prayer than encourage citizens to fast during ramadan, attend a synagogue, or practice magic. the government can't do any of those things, she says. what say you? >> i think she's way off base, i mean, the idea that you cannot acknowledge the religious heritage of our country, the national day of prayer, as you said earlier is a half century old, but, going back to george washington, there are calls for days of fasting actually and days of prayer. and fdr did that at the beginning of world war ii.
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this is part of who we are as the american people and no one is establishing a national religion, and you are not compelled to participate in this and it is an acknowledgment of the american people and what makes us unique we have a religious heritage and believe our freedoms and liberties derive from god and it doesn't say speck denominations and the reason the case ends up at the supreme court of the u.s., the 7th circuit court of appeals frankly had troubling rulings. involving religion -- typical religion freedom cases, a prayer before a legislative event they called to be unconstitutional and we have had the judge overturned on the ten commandments case before, and, look, i think this is destined for the supreme court of the u.s. martha: i want to read another quote from judge crabb. she says in fact, it is because the nature of prayer is so personal and can have such a powerful effect on a community,
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that the government may not use its authority to try and influence an individual's decision whether or when to pray and is suggesting in this that the national day of prayer is encouraging people to pray. >> yes. as if that is somehow subversive to the american republic. martha: right. >> she says it is a powerful force, and then says, but we don't want to encourage people to do that. like the argument that now retiring justice stevens made when he said the problem with posting the ten commandments is, people, students might study them and read them and follow them and, this kind of logic, that we have to take, religious exercise, prayer activity and say, somehow it will be subversive to america and dangerous for the populous if we suggest -- no one requires it, if we suggest people participate in national day of prayer and it constitutes a crisis and establishment of a national religion. martha: and nobody is forcing anybody, to do anything, they can participate or not. that is their, of course, their
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right and now, it may become an issue, for the supreme court and it may, you are suggesting, be something that we might see the next justice, who everybody is waiting to see who will be nominated, deal with. >> right. and you know what is interesting, every time there has been a -- at least 15, 20 years when there is a supreme court vacancy it seems one case arises that gets the interest of the u.s., the senate in the confirmation process and it may well be this case, because it is a unique case and a federal statute and national day of prayer, passed by congress and we're representing 35 members of congress, republicans and democrats, in this case, filing briefs in it and, it is interesting, that i think it may well become part of the discussion point when the nominees announce which is probably two weeks from now, and i think it could play a role in the supreme court's selection, and, confirmation and i think the american people are going to be really paying attention to this, sometimes it is the abortion issue and sometimes business and this time it will be the national day of prayer.
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martha: and you are directly involved in that, writing the brief for this group of congressmen and legislators, thank you very much, good to see you, sir. >> thanks for having me, good to see you. bill: "fox news alert," news breaking out of l.a., los angeles darrell gates, the l.a. police chief during the deadly riots of 1992 died of cancer, he died either thursday night or early friday morning. his family said in february the former chief had been hospitalized with bladder cancer and ran the department when the riots broke out and four white police officers were acquitted of most charges of the beating of black motorist rod my king and he was responsible for -- rodney king and he was responsible for police department excesses overlooked after he was forced into early retirement after the riots. he was 83 years old. news breaking out of los angeles. martha? martha: a group of activists taking on your drinking water. changing what is in it, why the battle could affect the next time you see this dentist, bill. bill: you need a parking place?
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this driver found one... well, that will cost him. martha: doesn't look like a good spot. [ male announcer ] designed to function the way you funion. the lexus rx. s at your lexus deal. -d-d-d-d-d-d-d-d-d-d-d-d-d-d-d-d
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bill: the interesting debate shaping up as it relates to politics and the water that comes out of your tap could be changing and activists are trying to stop the government from adding fluoride to the drinking water, claiming it is a health risk an supporters say they have science on their signed we bring in douglas kennedy live in new york. good morning. >> the government has been adding fluoride to the drinking water, since 1945 and now, some question whether it is hurting more than helping. the restaurant owner in portland, maine. >> nice... >> reporter: a state which has the best tasting drinking water
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in the country. ironic, because, oliver spends much of his time, trying to convince his neighbors not to drink it. >> reporter: your issue is fluoride in the drinking water. >> yes, it is. >> reporter: why is fluoride unhealthy in your opinion? >> well, number one, it is a toxic substance, it causes multiple diseases, it has been shown, study after study to cause cancer as well as many other debilitating diseases. >> reporter: claims government scientists strongly disagree with and, this man is so convinced it is harmful he's collecting signatures for a ballot initiative that would prohibit portland from adding fluoride to drinking water as it has done since 1997. and, most dental advocates say, fear of fluoride is completely unfounded. >> fluoridation of community water is extremely of safe and effective in preventing tooth decay. >> reporter: edmund teaches dentistry at u.c.l.a. and is a spokesperson for the meramerica
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dental association and points out the centers for disease control and prevent vepgs recently honored water mr fluoridation as one of the health achievements of the 20th century and can't explain why the anti-nor ride movement is gaining such traction. >> science is on the side of fluoride being safe and effectivement there is no controversy about this in the scientific community. >> reporter: the ada says it is a controversy invented by activists like yourself and has no basis in science. what do you say to that. >> well, i say there is a lot of science, showing the harmful effects of fluoride and i dispute the unanimity of the agreement among dentists on the issue. >> reporter: he says his own dentist is on his side. that is it from here, back to you. bill: i use crest, martha, back to you. martha: the cia under
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investigation, over the destruction of interrogation videos, what internal e-mails -- and, you know, this is all kind of bubbling up on the wires, what they are telling us about this controversy. bill: also, in a moment a volcano cputting a thorn in the side of travellers just about everywhere. when will they fly again, in the u.s., back in a moment on that... updates. [ advisor 1 ] what do you see yourself doing one week, one month, five years after you do retire? ♪ client comes in and they have a box. and inside that box is their financial life.
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