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Breaking News

Appeals Court Rules Against Asylum Hearing for Elian Gonzalez; Miami Relatives Seek Supreme Court Justice Kennedy's Help

Aired June 1, 2000 - 11:53 a.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

BILL HEMMER, CNN ANCHOR: All right, along with Daryn Kagan, I'm Bill Hemmer once again live at the CNN Center in Atlanta. We continue to track the fallout from the 11th Circuit Court of Appeal and their decision handed out 53 minutes ago.

One of the issues we've been talking about for the past hour is whether or not the family in Miami and the relatives and attorneys there will take this court to the highest court in the land, that being the U.S. Supreme Court.

Roger Cossack tracking this and more.

Roger, I understand you have a tidbit of information on this. What have you found out?

ROGER COSSACK, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Well, Bill, apparently what has happened is the Miami family lawyers have gone to Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy and asked him for help. And what that means is this: Each of the justices on the Supreme Court have a supervisory power over a certain circuit. Judge -- Justice Kennedy's circuit is the 11th Circuit. And he -- what they're asking him to do is to issue a stay, I suppose pending a discussion of this matter before the United States Supreme Court.

In other words, what they've said is, look, would you help us out and give us a stay right now, pending the United States Supreme Court making a decision as to, one, whether or not they'll hear the case or, two, whether or not you want to hear the case or refer it to the Supreme Court.

So what's happened so far is that they've gone to Justice Kennedy, they've asked him for this emergency help. Whether or not he grants it, we'll yet -- we have to wait and see.

HEMMER: Do we know, based on history, how quick that can come, Roger?

COSSACK: You know, these things can come rather quickly. I was once involved in a case where I asked for a stay, you know, several years ago when I was practicing and got it within a couple of hours on a particular matter. These things can come quickly, so there's no way to predict them.

HEMMER: All right, we'll stay in touch on that, Roger Cossack in Washington.

Back to Atlanta, your partner, Greta Van Susteren, outside the courthouse now. More information on this appeals process.

Here's Greta once again.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Well, you know what's so interesting about this decision is that it's 3-0, which doesn't give much hope for the losers in it in terms of going back to the full court for a different decision. They may ultimately go to the full court, or they may go on to the United States Supreme Court, but that certainly is not a particularly good sign for a losing team to have a 3-0.

What's interesting about this case is, does this stay dissolve? And what I've done is I've gone back to the April 19 decision in which the court granted the injunction, granted the stay, and they said in their decision that the stay will exist during the pendency of this appeal.

So the big question is: What's the pendency of the appeal? Does it end today with the decision, or does it give the other losing side an opportunity to go to the full court or the Supreme Court. It probably does. The stay was probably in effect, but no one has said it specifically in a court order that the injunction stays. My guess is that it does stay, at least for the short run. But the fact that it's a 3-0 opinion, there's no dissent for the losing side, doesn't give much hope for the Miami family.

Back to you.

HEMMER: All right, Greta and Roger. Thank you very much. That's why you have a -- with us because you help us figure it all out.

Now here's Daryn.

DARYN KAGAN, CNN ANCHOR: Absolutely.

Now, once again, to wrap up what we've been talking about since the top of the hour, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, the three- judge panel here in Atlanta has denied an asylum hearing for 6-year- old Elian Gonzalez, also giving both sides two weeks to file an appeal. It looks like, though, the Miami relatives are taking their case right to the Supreme Court, asking for help from Justice Kennedy.

HEMMER: We will hear more, undoubtedly, throughout the afternoon; 12:30 Eastern, about 34 minutes away, we'll hear from the Miami relatives in Miami; also the attorneys down there.

This, again, the crowd that has gathered outside the home there. It seems to be a crowd that is loitering more than protesting, certainly. And quite a number of journalists mixed up in that group as well.

KAGAN: A lot different than the crowds we've seen earlier throughout the last six months.

You mentioned 12:30, the Miami relatives and their attorneys having a news conference out of Miami. You'll see that live. Also, 2:00 p.m. Eastern, Attorney General Janet Reno has said that she'll be having a news conference, also to react to today's news.

HEMMER: One thing is sure: The fallout will continue because the story is not over yet.

KAGAN: The story goes on.

HEMMER: Thanks for being with us. That concludes our special coverage. But throughout the day, again, continued updates on this story and a lot more.

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