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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Final Republican Debate; Latest on Stacy Peterson Case; Ike Turner Dies
Aired December 12, 2007 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, ANCHOR: Today saw the final Republican debate before the Iowa caucuses. It couldn't have come at a more crucial time for the candidates. Tonight, we'll be focusing on what they said and whether or not it jibes with the facts. As always, we're "Keeping Them Honest" with the best political team on TV and a panel of everyday Iowans weighing in with their minute-by-minute reactions. It's a fascinating look.
Drew Peterson, his wife, Stacy, missing, presumed death, the death of a previous wife now being revisited. Tonight, the latest strange turns in this creepy case and his sister-in-law speaking out only here on "360" about the man she says is responsible for Stacy's disappearance.
Ike Turner died today. Tonight we remember the music and the man whose personal demons nearly destroyed him and destroyed those around him.
We begin though with the last chance for Republicans to tangle on television before the Iowa caucuses. From now on they'll be fighting it out with local appearances and campaign ads and already a lot of smoke.
As always, we're covering that part of the game including a new attack on Mitt Romney's religion and the apology. But we're not playing along with their game. So tonight as always we're looking carefully at what is being said, how it fits with the facts and most importantly how all of it squares with voters.
First, CNN's John King with the "Raw Politics."
(BEGIN VIDEO TAPE)
JOHN KING, CHIEF CNN CORRESPONDENT: Feisty it was not. This early exchange on taxes providing one of the few mild flash points.
MITT ROMNEY, (R) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I'm concerned about the taxes that middle-class families are paying. They're in a lot of pressure.
FRED THOMPSON, (R) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: My goal is to get into Mitt Romney's situation where I don't have to worry about taxes anymore.
ROMNEY: Five percent are in your situation.
THOMPSON: You know, you're getting to be a pretty good actor, actually.
KING: The prospect for fireworks faded at the outset when the most emotional dividing line of the Republican race was taken off the table.
CAROLYN WASHBURN, EDITOR, DES MOINES REGISTER: We won't talk a lot about issues like Iraq or immigration.
KING: Congressman Tom Tancredo tried, taking aim at Iowa front- runner Mike Huckabee.
REP. TOM TANCREDO, (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I have to ask you a question, and the question is, how are you going to convince America that you have, in fact, changed your mind on the issues immigration from when you were governor?
KING: No answer allowed. So few sharp exchanges, but some risky snippets. The farmers in Iowa and elsewhere; this from Senator John McCain.
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN, (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: And I will also eliminate subsidies on ethanol and other agricultural products. They are an impediment to competition, an impediment to free markets, and I believe that subsidies are a mistake.
KING: Absent fireworks, the last GOP debate before Iowa votes in three weeks became a competition to show conservative credentials, cutting taxes was popular.
RUDY GIULIANI, (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: A flatter tax is simply a tax that you could file on one page as an option would be a good idea.
KING: Cutting spending, too.
ROMNEY: And the sacrifice we need for the American people, it's this. It's saying let the programs that don't work go.
WASHBURN: Thank you.
ROMNEY: Don't lobby for them forever.
REP. RON PAUL, (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We maintain an empire we can't afford. We have 700 bases overseas. We are in 130 countries.
KING: When the topic turned to improving education, former Senator Fred Thompson took aim at the nation's largest teachers union.
THOMPSON: The biggest obstacle in my opinion is the National Education Association, the NEA.
KING: Governor Huckabee knows his record on immigration, taxes and crime faces tough scrutiny in the next 21 days. So he looked to build goodwill. MIKE HUCKABEE, (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think the first priority of the next president is to be president of all the United States. We are right now a very polarized country, and that polarized country has led to a paralyzed government.
KING: Along with immigration, another campaign controversy that did not come up was this Huckabee quote to "The New York Times" magazine when asked about Romney's Mormon faith.
HUCKABEE: Don't Mormons believe that Jesus and the devil are brothers?
KING: But as soon as the debate was done, Huckabee told CNN he had approached his rival.
HUCKABEE: I went to Mitt Romney and apologized to him because I said I would never try, ever, to try to somehow pick out some point of your faith and make it, you know, an issue.
(END VIDEO TAPE)
COOPER: John King and CNN contributors Donna Brazille and Bill Bennett join me for more on the debate. John, does Mike Huckabee have to try to broaden out his appeal to reach to independents, to reach to people beyond just a religious base?
KING: Anderson, strategically here in Iowa, he knows the next three weeks he's going to be catching a lot of harpoons so he's trying to be big. Trying to say, "I want to end the polarization, I want to end the politics." So that when the rivals come at him, maybe voters will say, "Isn't that that nice guy to wanted to bring the country together?"
And yes, beyond Iowa, he needs to reach out to independents beyond the evangelical base which doesn't exist in other states like it does here in Iowa and South Carolina. So he's trying to be a bigger figure, a larger figure just as many around the country are saying, "Who is this guy, Mike Huckabee?
COOPER: Bill, what is he doing right, Mike Huckabee?
BILL BENNETT, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, he's hitting a nice tone. People like his agreeableness. He doesn't hit talking points. He goes for the homey aphorism which sells at this point and I think will continue to.
I have to say a little hesitation here he wants to be a uniter and bringer of harmony when he put a grenade on Mitt Romney's door the other day with that comment about Mormonism which we'll all read about in "The New York Times" I guess on Sunday.
COOPER: And which I guess he has now -- He apologized today to Mitt Romney for it.
BENNETT: Yes, after it blew up, he apologized, that's correct, but it's still there. But we'll see. I think he is going to have to cash in a little bit on policy and on foreign policy, in particularly.
It is not enough to talk about the golden rule and again, to go to the bromide. He has to do that. But he sounds different. He's the non-politician. Every election there's romance in the race, and the romance is with Huckabee this time. A little bit like it is with Obama and the Democrats.
COOPER: Romance and politics. Donna, Mitt Romney led the pack in Iowa for months. Now all of a sudden after spending gazillions of dollars, he's in the fight of his life with Mike Huckabee, a guy who is asking for gas money for his bus, apparently. Let's play a little bit of what Governor Romney had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HUCKABEE: I'm going to build on the same foundation Ronald Reagan built. We're not going to get the White House, nor strengthen America unless we can pull together the coalition of conservatives and conservative thought that has made us successful as a party, and that's social conservatives.
It's also economic conservatives and foreign policy and defense conservatives. Those three together form the three legs of the Republican stool that allowed Ronald Reagan to get elected and allowed our party to have strength over the last several decades.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: In terms of the politics of it all if Huckabee's doing the right moves, what has Romney been doing wrong?
DONNA BRAZILLE, DEMOCRATIC STRATEGIST: First of all, Mr. Romney couldn't make any mistakes today. I thought he gave a great performance. He was able to articulate his vision. He was able to lay out a little bit about where he stands on education, on health care, energy and, of course, the economy.
He seemed very presidential on addressing those issues. He connected much better than he did in the previous debate. But he didn't have an opportunity to go after Mike Huckabee on immigration, on some of the other social conservative issues that perhaps could have laid the foundation for a mini-surge for Mr. Romney.
Overall I thought Mr. Huckabee did very well during this debate, but this was not a formal -- the type of debate where the candidates could really engage each other on the big issues.
COOPER: John King, Rudy Giuliani was asked about a report his administration had billing records for his visits with his then girlfriend, Judith Nathan. Take a look at how he handled that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GIULIANI: The reality is that all that information was available, and known to people, known six years ago. And I would make sure that government was transparent. My government in New York City was so transparent that they knew every single thing I did, almost every time I did it.
So I would be extremely -- I would be extremely open. I'm used to it. I'm used to being analyzed. I haven't had a perfect life. I wish I had. And I do the best that I can to learn from my mistakes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: This is the kind of thing, obviously, the media especially in New York pays a lot of attention to. Do you hear it out on the campaign trail? Is this actually taking a toll on Giuliani?
KING: There was some laughter about the idea that everybody in New York knew what he was doing, and by that meaning that he was having an affair when he was the mayor of New York City. If there was a voter out there who won't vote for Giuliani because he's on his third marriage, that voter already knows that information, Anderson.
But on the question of why was police spending, security spending, being funded by the accounts for the office with peoples of disabilities, the New York City board, Mayor Giuliani says those questions were answered six years ago. But his staff has still not been able to explain to us in the last couple of weeks why those -- why that spending was accounted for in those obscure accounts.
They say they don't know. They promise to go back and get answers. We haven't gotten those yet. On the question of competence of government, transparency of government, Mayor Giuliani is likely to face more questions until his staff comes back and says we looked into this, and here are the answers.
COOPER: Donna, this is the last Republican debate before the Iowa caucuses, a little more than a week, people go into Christmas mode.
You're a veteran of campaigns. At this point are people's minds made up? How crucial are these next few weeks, and what do campaigns try to do now to change the state of the race? Do the attack ads come out now?
BRAZILLE: No question. They'll try and run attack ads up until Christmas Eve. But look, this is a difficult political season for any campaign operative. You want to get as much mail out there before the Christmas seasons really kick off which is in about another week.
You also want to get on the phones. You want to really line up your support, make sure you have your buses, get people really motivated to come out on a cold, wintry night.
This is going to be a tough time you want to get people to pay attention while they are trying to get their Christmas gifts under the tree and their other gifts. It's going to be a tough time for the candidates to really break through.
COOPER: Bill, you talk to a lot of people on your radio show every morning. Do people buy these attack ads? Mitt Romney has an ad now in which he attacks Huckabee for his support of immigration -- immigration of schools policy. Basically saying Huckabee is weak on immigration.
Do people buy that, or do people see this as just candidates trying to manipulate them?
BENNETT: Yeah, the conventional wisdom is by the attack ads, I didn't think this was much of an attack ad. I don't think it makes much of an impression. I'm not sure it's that good an ad.
It starts by praising Huckabee and then gets him on the immigration issue. I think just as much as that, I think lift is important now. And against the conventional wisdom, Anderson, I've got to tell you, I think Oprah Winfrey did a great thing for Barack Obama.
We wonder who Oprah's going to endorse on our side because somebody could use that same kind of lift. Politics feeds off culture and again I know you laughed at it when I said it, but people, particularly at this stage, before you get down to the nitty-gritty, you want to kind of fall for somebody, and people are falling for Obama, they're falling a little bit for Huckabee, and that makes a big difference.
COOPER: Reminds me of those bumper stickers in the last race, what was it, like Data Dean married Kerry or something?
BENNETT: A little bit like that, yeah.
COOPER: People want romance. Good old-fashioned romance.
Bill Bennett thank you, Donna Brazille good talking to you, and John King, thanks.
Alan Keyes, remember him? You might have caught a glimpse of him in one of the cutaways. He was one of the debaters this afternoon. You might not have known he was even running this time around, but he is. He's just not showing up in the national polls.
Why was he allowed to debate today? The answer in tonight's "Raw Data." The sponsor of the debate, Iowa public TV, says Keyes met the criteria to be in the debate. And you might wonder what that standard is.
It's an FEC statement of candidacy having an Iowa campaign staffer, and Iowa campaign office as of October 1st and registering at least at 1 percent in the October "Des Moines Register" poll.
By the way, that's why tomorrow you won't see Dennis Kucinich and Mike Gravel when the Democrats face off.
More ahead, TOM FOREMAN keeping the candidates honest on what they said today on stage. Do the facts jibe with the rhetoric?
Also, how undecided Republicans reacted. Did any change their minds? More important, with the caucuses almost here did any of the candidates actually close the deal? They were selling. Question is who was buying? Space age dial- testing technology reveals voters' reactions minute by minute, and some of it might surprise you.
Later, does this look like a man who's worried about his missing wife or suspected in the death of another wife? Or feared by yet another wife?
DREW PETERSON: I'm a suspect officially, but I think was a suspect from the beginning.
COOPER: New puzzle pieces in the strange saga of Drew Peterson. And get this. Now he wants your money to pay for his defense. Tonight on "360."
COOPER: The GOP candidates debating in Iowa now with 100 percent for Alan Keyes. Their answers today sharply limited by the moderator and the clock. It was a tight format and for the most parts the candidates stuck to it.
The question, though, do short answers also mean factually correct answers? CNN's Tom Foreman tonight is "Keeping Them Honest."
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, the candidates generally stuck to the facts but keeping them honest, some of what they said should be put into context. Energy was a hot topic. John McCain says he has a plan for America to quit using foreign oil.
MCCAIN: And we will in five years become oil independent.
FOREMAN: But the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research says no way. Sixty percent of our oil is imported; we haven't built a new refinery in a long time. So even if we found enough replacement oil here, we could not process it.
We could cut consumption and push alternative fuels, but, the institute says all of that would still not produce oil independence so quickly.
Mitt Romney criticized the government for having too many different programs addressing the same problems.
ROMNEY: We have 13 different programs to prevent teenage pregnancy. They're obviously not working real well. And we can probably cut it down to one or two that are making a difference.
FOREMAN: Here's the context on that, the United States does have the one of the highest teen pregnancy rates in the industrialized world. But teen pregnancies have fallen dramatically over the past two decades. And some say government education programs were one big reason.
Rudy Giuliani says by promoting the alternative of adoption, he significantly reduced the number of abortions in New York City while he was mayor.
GIULIANI: I would like to see limitations on abortion. I brought those about in New York City, we reduced abortions. We increased adoptions by 135 percent.
FOREMAN: According to the Goodmocker Institute which studies such things, in Giuliani's New York abortions did decline 18 percent, but nationwide they dropped 13 percent in the same time so abortions were pretty much going down everywhere. Anderson?
COOPER: It's interesting stuff. Tom Foreman "Keeping Them Honest."
So what do potential caucus-goers actually think of today's debate? JOE JOHNS is covering that for us tonight. Joe?
JOE JOHNS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, as an instant test of what worked and what did not work during the debate. Twenty-one d registered Republicans, undecided Republicans from Iowa selected by CNN to listen to the debate and register their views with meters.
When the line on the screen went up, that meant approval. When it went down, that meant disapproval.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHNS: Overall impressions of the CNN/dial meter focus group suggested they had watched a debate that was, I in a word, a little flat. More than one person said expectations for top tier candidates were not met.
PATTY RISINGER, UNDECIDED IOWA VOTER: I thought that I might like Giuliani a little bit more. And I wasn't as impressed with him.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Were you disappointed with Huckabee?
GREG LASCHEID, UNDECIDED IOWA VOTER: Yeah, actually, I kind of was a little bit disappointed with him.
UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Why? What was it that he said?
LASCHEID: It's not what he said, it's what he didn't say.
JOHNS: Still former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee was able to connect more than once. One of his highest points in the debate came when he started injecting his personal story.
HUCKABEE: It's a long way from the little rent house I grew up in. At this stage, I'm still in awe that this country would afford kids like me the opportunity to be a president. I will try not to forget where I came from and where this country needs to go.
JOHNS: Otherwise tried and true Republican themes seemed to work. Rudy Giuliani on the issue of fiscal responsibility and taxes.
GIULIANI: There are other taxes we should get rid of. We should get rid of the death tax and a whole bunch of others. But the first should be the corporate tax.
JOHNS: Fred Thompson seemed to score when he suggested he was telling truth to voters that they wouldn't hear from other candidates on the need to shore up entitlement spending, social security and Medicare.
THOMPSON: I want to take a chance on telling the truth to the American people. Our entitlement programs by 2040 or so, we're going to eat up our entire budget.
JOHNS: John McClain on reforming the tax code.
MCCAIN: Nobody understands it, nobody trusts it, nobody believes in it and we have to fix it. And we can't raise taxes as our Democrat friends want.
JOHNS: And Mitt Romney on keeping markets open.
ROMNEY: So don't put up barriers to keep us from being able to trade. America can compete around the world and to remain a superpower we must compete around the world.
JOHNS: But compared with some other recent debates, a lot of the candidates' remarks seemed to fall flat. Call it audience debate fatigue or candidate performance, things that didn't seem to work, including challenging the moderator. Alan Keyes probably got the lowest score of the afternoon after this.
ALLAN KEYES, (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I would like to address the question of education.
WASHBURN: Go ahead.
KEYES: I don't wish it to pass on.
WASHBURN: You have 30 seconds.
KEYES: They had a minute, why do I get 30 seconds?
(END VIDEO TAPE)
JOHNS: On the other hand slamming favorite targets did seem to work. Both Romney and Thompson scored by criticizing the National Education Association. Most of the members of our focus group said they thought Huckabee is the candidate to beat, but this was not a scientific poll.
COOPER: I do find it fascinating just to see as people are talking their immediate reactions those lines going down and those lines going up. It's fascinating to see after these debate after debate.
JOHNS: Yes, the story of this debate, interestingly enough, was really sort of all of the flat lines. People just really weren't connecting with these candidates in a lot of different ways. COOPER: Maybe it hearkens back to what Bill Bennett said earlier the program which is they want romance; they want to fall in love. At least for these voters, maybe they're not falling in love.
It was cold in Iowa, very cold and icy across the middle of the country and the big chill in the heartland is far from over. Gary Tuchman joins us with that and more in the "360" bulletin. Gary?
GARY TUCHMAN: Hello, Anderson. Folks in the center of the nation are still struggling to chop their way out of this week's deadly ice storm. Nearly a million homes and businesses are without electricity in six states.
Utility companies warn it might be more than a week before power is fully restored. The storm has been blamed for at least 27 deaths. Chad Myers tells us where this storm is headed next later in the program.
A massive recall of a child vaccine to report tonight. The drug maker Merck pulling back a million doses of the vaccine HIB which prevents meningitis and pneumonia. Testing uncovered contamination at a company factory in Pennsylvania.
And talk about a great hair day, even if it was a guy who's been dead for 27 years. A lock from John Lennon, along with a signed note sold today for $48,000. It was one of many items of Beatles memorabilia on the block. All the stuff came from the collection of a woman who worked as the band's hairdresser back in the '60s. And Lennon was a giant, Anderson, but I don't know what you would do with his hair if you would buy it.
COOPER: Yes, it's kind of creepy. You kind of think that should be with his family not some person that's just kind of paying the money.
TUCHMAN: I'm curious, what does Yoko think about this? I don't think she thinks it's so dignified.
COOPER: Yes, certainly not. Gary, stay right there. When we come back, cats in wigs. That's right, it has come to this. I'm not talking about British judges. Either it is was our "What were they thinking segment?"
Also "Crime and Punishment." Drew Peterson prime suspect in his wife's disappearance. Tonight only on "360," his sister-in-law speaking out.
Back after a short break.
COOPER: Gary now in our segment "What Were They Thinking" and this one had us all scratching our hair today in our wigs. Just in time for Christmas. That's right, almost too bizarre even for this segment. The wigs from a company calling itself appropriately, I guess, kittywigs.com.
Why do you need wigs for your cat? I have no idea. That's sort of a little Paris Hilton wig there. There's another. That's kind of a blue Naomi Campbell look. I don't know. Gary, it's kind of weird. Why does anyone need this?
TUCHMAN: I think you brought it up before the break, why do British judges need wigs, too? Maybe the same reason. Maybe it's going to become a tradition.
COOPER: Maybe so. I think it's got to be a joke. They claim it's real.
Tomorrow on "360." actually, you know, that did remind me, I think we have the Gary Tuchman in wigs picture. Oh, it's not an actual wig it's your actual hair from back in the day. I don't know what year it was, but I'm assuming it was back in the day.
TUCHMAN: I would say, if you really want to know the year, I would guess that's 1982.
COOPER: Do you have any memory of the early 1980s?
TUCHMAN: I have a very good memory of early -- I love rock 'n' roll, but I remember it very distinctly. I remember things better then than I do now. I cannot remember what happened yesterday but I remember what happened in 1982 very well.
COOPER: All right. Appreciate it, Gary.
Tomorrow on "360," a man's 63-year fight for justice from the U.S. Army. David Mattingly takes a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This piece of paper was supposed to make things right for Samuel Snow. It's a check from the Pentagon cut for the World War II veteran. A way he thought the military would say, "I'm sorry." But that's not what happened.
With that check is the army saying that they care what they put you through?
SAMUEL SNOW, WORLD WAR II VETERAN: No. They didn't care.
MATTINGLY: Snow was one of two living defendants left from one of the biggest military trials of World War II. Private Samuel Snow spent more than a year in prison for rioting and was dishonorably discharged. Stripped of any chance for G.I. loans or benefits, he became a career janitor.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: The army agrees Snow and other convicted soldiers were denied a fair trial. But wait till you hear how they say they're sorry. We're "Keeping Them Honest" tomorrow on "360." Up next tonight, Stacy Peterson's sister speaking out only on "360."
And straight ahead, is Bill Clinton miffed that Hillary's campaign staff with new dirt aimed at Barack Obama stick? The Democratic race is getting close and could be getting a whole lot rougher. Details coming up.
And also later tonight, Ike Turner, he used drugs, he abused his wife, Tina, but he also helped create rock 'n roll. A look back at the brilliant and troubled life of Ike Turner.
COOPER: In "Crime and Punishment" tonight, Drew Peterson wants your help and it seems your intention. The Chicago area ex-cop, suspected of killing his fourth wife has set up his defense fund. He even has a website where you can send him money and he hasn't been charged with anything.
Today we learned he sent his lawyer to court hoping to reclaim the items seized by police. Then there's the new allegation by the sister of Stacy Peterson claiming drew Peterson shot a gun in his home, and she says it came close to hitting Stacy. "360's" exclusive interview with her sister in a moment.
Meanwhile, other people who know the Petersons are talking about their relationship and his past. CNN's Gary Tuchman reports.
(BEGIN VIDEO TAPE)
TUCHMAN: Drew Peterson's fourth wife Stacy, gone without a trace.
PETERSON: I'm a suspect officially but I think I was a suspect from the beginning.
TUCHMAN: His third wife died mysteriously in the bathtub. His second wife divorced him telling "The Chicago Tribune" he said he could kill her and make it look like an accident.
You're married to Drew Peterson's first wife.
DAVE BROWN, HUSBAND OF DREW PETERSON'S FIRST WIFE: That's right.
TUCHMAN: And now we're learning about his first marriage from a man who was married 26 years to the former Carol Peterson.
When she talks to you about his marriage to Drew, how does she characterize their marriage?
BROWN: It's really been a long time since we talked about it. It was normal except for his unfaithfulness and that's what broke them up. Otherwise, it was normal. There was no violence of any kind, not even any threatening. TUCHMAN: That is what passes for good news these days for Drew Peterson who makes some effort to live a normal life in a Chicago suburban home and his four children. Two from his marriage with Stacy and two from his marriage with third wife Kathleen Salvio.
Her body has been exhumed because an investigation has been reopened into her death. Pam Bosco was the legal guardian of Stacy Peterson's youngest sister Cassandra and one of Stacy's closest friends.
Stacy knew that his third wife was found dead. Was she ever concerned about that?
PAMELA BOSCO, FRIEND OF STACY PETERSON: She told us that Drew had told her that she was on medication, Kathleen was on medication. She stood up and got dizzy and slipped and hit her head. Stacy at that young naive age, she believed it.
TUCHMAN: Did you ever doubt that story?
BOSCO: Right from the start, when I first heard it, I turned to Cassandra and said he killed her.
TUCHMAN: Divers have searched the canal near the Peterson home for a body and evidence. Others have joined in different land searches but so far nothing.
What kind of guy is drew Peterson?
JOEL BRODSKY, PETERSON'S ATTORNEY: Isn't that the $64,000 question?
TUCHMAN: Peterson's attorney says while he may not have been the most loyal husband to his wives, Peterson is not a killer. As a matter of fact Peterson is saying Stacy called him to say she left for another man.
BRODSKY: He thinks if she's anywhere, maybe she's tending bar in Saskatchewan or Nome, Alaska or maybe somewhere south in the island of Cancun or something. But surely she's not hiding out in the bushes a couple of hundred yards in his house.
PETERSON: Am I worried about her and her safety? Yes. I have been from the beginning.
TUCHMAN: If Drew Peterson's denials are true, he would be one of the unluckier husbands in matrimonial history with wives dying, disappearing and denouncing him.
But that's his story and he's sticking to it. But he remains a suspect; the only suspect. Gary Tuchman, CNN, Bolingbrook, Illinois.
(END VIDEO TAPE)
COOPER: And right after the break, Stacy Peterson's sister, Cassandra. We'll be right back. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
COOPER: Before the break we told you about the latest in the case of Stacy Peterson. As you know, her husband Drew Peterson is a suspect in her disappearance. Police believe he may have murdered her.
Tonight we're digging deeper. Joining us for a "360" exclusive interview is the sister of Stacy Peterson, Cassandra Cales and her legal guardian, Pam Bosco who as Gary mentioned earlier is also a good friend of Stacy's.
I appreciate both of you joining us. Cassandra, your sister Stacy told you about an incident when Drew almost shot her. What happened?
CASSNDRA CALES, STACY PETERSON'S SISTER: I was in her bedroom and she had told me that Drew had gotten off work and he was changing out of his uniform. And he sent her down to the fridge to get a soda and while she was in the garage getting a soda for him, she heard a bang or a pow. She didn't know what it was.
And when she returned upstairs to give him his soda, he said his gun went off by accident.
COOPER: Did she seem to believe that?
CALES: I don't know. That's exactly how she told me.
COOPER: Pam, you want to offer a challenge, basically, to Drew Peterson about something he's been talking about getting investigators in. What do you want to say?
BOSCO: Well, you know that is all part of his point behind his website supposedly that part of it was going to go for his defense because he had no money supposedly. And the other half was going to go to hire a private investigator to find Stacy.
So I'll put the offer out there. I'll put $10,000 down right now if he puts $10,000 down, and we'll hire a private investigator to go out there and find Stacy.
COOPER: Do you think he'll really do that?
BOSCO: Isn't that the whole point behind the website to go out there and find Stacy? So let's do it.
COOPER: Cassandra, what did Stacy say to you ever about her relationship with Drew?
CALES: It was very like -- it was like a roller coaster ride, basically. It was up and down, you know?
COOPER: And Drew is now claiming that Stacy isn't missing. That she actually called him saying she left him for another man. Do you buy that at all? CALES: No, absolutely not.
COOPER: Pam, did Stacy ever say anything about having a relationship with somebody else?
BOSCO: No, of course not. We always knew her time was completely occupied with her family. She was starting school so she was making new friends and connecting with old ones. And that's where, obviously, he throws his alibi or doubt into the whole public that she was obviously starting an affair, had an affair with this and now Brodsky saying she was possibly having an affair with the pastor. It's just nonsense.
COOPER: Cassandra, what do you make of it? We see drew Peterson coming and going. He seems to be almost -- I don't want to say having fun with it, I don't want to interpret someone else's actions, but playing with his camera, playing with the camera men who were out on his lawn.
When you see him do all this stuff, what do you think?
CALES: I just feel that he's trying to draw the attention away from finding my sister. So he's just drawing the attention on himself.
COOPER: Pam, a minister in a church said that Stacy confided in him that she believed Drew had killed his third wife whose death was first ruled an accident. Did Stacy share anything with you about what she thought had happened to Drew's third wife or with Cassandra?
BOSCO: Again, we always go back to what she had told Cassandra back then. If she ever spoke of it, it was always what Drew had told her which was that Kathleen was on medication. She stood up, she got dizzy, she hit her head.
There was never any thought from her, or she never expressed anything other than that to us.
COOPER: Pam Bosco and Cassandra, I know it's been a long day and difficult for you to talk and I appreciate you taking the time to do it. Thank you.
BOSCO: Thank you.
Just ahead, Hillary Clinton's slipping lead and signs the campaign could get nastier because of it.
Also, a musical legend has died.
Influential and infamous we remember the legacy of Ike Turner.
COOPER: It's the Democrats' turn in Iowa tomorrow; their last face-off before caucuses next month. It happens just as startling new poll numbers come out that could affect the direction of the Clinton campaign.
Up close tonight, here's senior political correspondent, Candy Crowley.
(BEGIN VIDEO TAPE)
CANDY CROWLEY, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: That 20-point lead she once had in New Hampshire, gone completely. Clinton, 31, Obama 30, Edwards and Richardson on down the line according to the latest CNN/WMUR poll conducted by the University of New Hampshire. Add the tie in Iowa, and it means a jump ball.
TOM VILSACK, (D) FORMER IOWA GOVERNOR: I don't know, it's scrum, maybe, to use a different sports analogy. It's anyone's game.
CROWLEY: It means an end to the Clinton inevitability talk and it means a lot of happy reporters.
MIKE GLOVER, ASSOCIATED PRESS: I've never seen an election quite this wide open. I've never seen an election with this much doubt.
CROWLEY: It means the beginning of stories about turmoil on the campaign. They all want to kill each other, a source told the "New York Daily News." The story describes an agitated unhappy Bill Clinton blaming his wife's staff for her downslide.
Obsessed maybe, said a source but the former president is calm. He knows better than anyone about the ups and downs of a campaign. It's the "never let them see you sweat" approach.
There was this non-denial denial from Clinton's campaign chair. The president is thrilled to be helping his wife. Stories like these are distractions but our experienced team isn't fazed.
Okay, just say they're feeling the pressure. I can't believe said a Clintonite, that you're not doing a story about the surge in the Democratic party of an untested unelectable candidate.
BARACK OBAMA, (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We have a chance.
CROWLEY: That would be Barack Obama. Clinton advisers complain his record has not been as thoroughly examined as hers.
VISACK: This is a candidate who's been road tested who's been under the microscope for the last 15 years and has with stood that examination. That goes to the issue of electability.
CROWLEY: Clinton's New Hampshire co-chairman went jugular in an interview with "The Washington Post" arguing that Obama's previous drug use will be a boon to Republicans.
It will be, "When was the last time, did you ever give drugs to anyone, did you sell them to anyone? Obama's campaign manager called the talk an increasingly desperate effort to slow here slide at the polls. This is going to make for one interesting debate when Democrats gather for a final Iowa face-off tomorrow. Still, the Democrats are in a bit of a bind particularly the front-runners. The closeness of the race calls for going after one another. But the calendar just three weeks before the Iowa caucuses suggests that now is the time to remind voters of why they should vote for you rather than why they should vote against your opponent.
Candy Crowley, CNN, Des Moines.
(END VIDEO TAPE)
COOPER: As you heard earlier when I was talking to Bill Bennett, he said something interesting about the presidential race. He said people want romance, they want to fall for somebody.
I wrote about our conversation on the "360" blog; got me thinking. We don't normally associate romance with politics. But hey, we do want courtship to some degree, the feeling of a candidate understanding us.
On the radar, we have some feedback from the "360" blog. Christina in Windber, Pennsylvania says my heart and vote are already taken, sort of. Things were much better in my opinion when Bill Clinton was president so I'm voting for Hillary.
But Barbara of Culvert City, California, writes let's just say my candidate and I are in an uncommitted relationship. If someone better comes along, my person is history. Barbara, oh, Barbara.
Holly in Florida says I just don't want to fall in love too quickly and then find out they aren't going to be the nominee, that would break my heart. I know. Love is tough. There you go.
Thanks to all of you who shared your thoughts on the blog. Check it out cnn.com/360. I have actually been keeping my New Year's pledge to blog every day and it's not even New Years yet. Again cnn.com/360, look for the link to the blog.
Here's John Roberts with what's coming up tomorrow on "American morning." John?
JOHN ROBERTS: Thanks, Anderson. Wake up to the most news in the morning, including a potential breakthrough in the treatment for cancer.
The inventor isn't a researcher, didn't go to med school, but when he was diagnosed himself he turned a lifelong passion for radio into a potential new weapon in the war on cancer.
We'll meet him and see how it works tomorrow on "American Morning" beginning at 6:00 a.m. Eastern. Anderson?
COOPER: Sounds cool, John, thanks.
Up next on "360," icy deadly conditions in the heartland and the storm is on the move tonight. CNN meteorologist Chad Myers is tracking it for us. He gives us the latest live. And remembering Ike Turner, legendary musician, who had a rocky marriage to say the least with Tina Turner, his personal demons and his musical hit. We look back when "360" continues.
COOPER: "Proud Mary" performed by, who else, Ike and Tina Turner. Tonight we learned that he died, he was 76 years old. He has a dual legacy, part of it will be for his groundbreaking role in helping create rock 'n' roll, but a big part of it will also be for his personal demons and his brutal relationship with his ex-wife.
(BEGIN VIDEO TAPE)
COOPER: The look, the voice, unmistakable. Ike Turner who earlier this year tried to set the record straight about himself.
IKE TURNER: I think to know me is great. But if you don't know me, I think you're missing out.
COOPER: Over a career spanning six decades, America did get to know him for better and worse. Born in Mississippi in 1931, as a child, Turner was captivated by the sounds of boogie-woogie and rhythm and blues.
His first instrument, a piano, and it's with the piano that he left his mark in 1951 with "Rocket 88." Many consider it the first rock 'n' roll song ever made. More fame followed when he met a teenaged girl. Her name was Anna May Bullock. Soon they married and became Ike and Tina Turner.
TINA TURNER, EX-WIFE OF IKE TURNER: Ike was very good to me when I first started my career. I was in high school and started to sing weekends with him and we were close friends. We had a very fun life in some kind of way.
COOPER: The fun didn't last. On stage, she had the spotlight. But standing in the back, he had the control. Their music was groundbreaking, fusing soul, funk and rock into a new sound.
But in their personal lives, Tina Turner says Ike abused her, emotionally and physically. With vicious beatings like the one depicted in the film based on her autobiography, "What's Love Got to Do With It?"
COOPER: Last April Ike Turner denied his ex-wife's allegations of violence.
I. TURNER: I think that in a movie you have to have a villain and you have to have somebody clean. I have never said anything wrong about Tina.
COOPER: After their breakup, both Turners continued to turn out hits, though Tina overshadowed her husband. His life became marred by drug abuse and run-ins with the police. In recent years there was a turnaround for Ike and praise for his influence on a new generation of musicians. Turner was also touring again and winning awards. More than 50 years after his first album, Ike Turner won a Grammy in 2007 for what would be his final recording, "Rising with the Blues."
COOPER: While many are talking about Ike Turner, his former wife is not. In a statement, Tina Turner's publicist says Tina has not seen or spoken to Ike in 30 years. There has been no relationship there. There will be no further comment.
More of Ike and Tina's music in a moment. Some other headlines though, first. Gary Tuchman joins us with "360" News and Business Bulletin. Gary?
TUCHMAN: Anderson, hello. An update on the storm that slammed into the nation's heartland. Lots of snow shoveling and icy conditions in Iowa and at least six other states. Tonight nearly 1 million homes and businesses are in the dark.
In Oklahoma, it could be up to ten days before everyone has power restored; very dangerous hardship in the cold. The nasty weather is headed for the northeast. Let's get details from CNN meteorologist Chad Myers. Chad?
CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Gary, all day we've been watching a rain event really develop into Oklahoma, Arkansas and parts of Texas. Well, this rain is going to try to make its way up into New York State tonight and into tomorrow.
It's not going to be in the form of rain. We're going to get a snow event especially through the Poconos and into the Catskills. The computer models have been making more and more precip, and most of it is in snow it all day long.
Now, this doesn't start until about noon tomorrow and it goes all the way through midnight. But if the computer models are literally one degree colder than they are right now, this purple area which is eight inches of snow everywhere, will be very, very close to New York City.
Right now New York City is a rain, snow, slushy mess. One degree colder it's a snowy mess. Tune in to "America Morning" tomorrow for the very latest, you'll want to hear about it.
TUCHMAN: Thank you, Chad. Here in Atlanta, 70 degrees today.
Turning to Wall Street now, a roller coaster ride for stocks, a day after big losses when the fed slashed interest rates, but not as much as some wanted. But today at the closing bell all markets posted slight gains. The Dow added 41 to finish at 13,473; the Nasdaq jumped 18 and the S&P rose eight points.
Anderson, back to you.
COOPER: Gary, in a moment we're going to have a special tribute to Ike and Tina Turner. The "360" crew actually dancing to -- there we go.
Yes. Yes. There you go. That's right. It's like "soul train" circa '07. Stay right there.
Up next, a traffic cop with bold moves. That is our "Shot of the Day," as well as the dancing we just saw.
TUCHMAN: You guys should be doing that.
COOPER: Well, they were doing it. And more of the music of Ike and Tina Turner in a moment.
COOPER: Gary, time for "the Shot of the Day." you expect police officers to write tickets, keep peace, that sort of thing. But a traffic cop in Rhode Island takes the job to a whole different level. Check it out.
That's right. His name is Tony Lepore, he's the dancing cop. He comes out of retirement every December to strut his stuff on the streets of Providence, Rhode Island.
He looks a little bit like the Swedish chef Muppet on "Sesame Street." Am I imagining that? Anyway it's a holiday tradition, no disrespect intended. Today, Tony's been doing this for more than 20 years. And it has become something everyone loves to watch.
I got to tell you, he cannot compete with the "360" crew because before each broadcast, you might not know this, Gary, they actually have a dance off before each nightly broadcast. And tonight it's all in tribute to the music of Ike and Tina Turner. Watch.
Yes, Bob and Frank and Kevin, that was the dance off. We have it everyday so, you know any time you're up here, Gary, come in right before us. And we do it like right after the Larry King hit and going on the air.
TUCHMAN: I'm looking forward to seeing that in person. I want to say one thing. A non-controversial statement here, Anderson. Those are great guys, they're great television professionals and I will leave it at that.
COOPER: All right, very good. Gary, thanks for your help. It is almost party time, you need to start to thinking about where you're going to be spending your New Year's Eve and we hope it's with us.
I will be out in Times Square yet again. This is like our fourth or fifth year doing it now, bringing the party there home to you. That's right, there's the cheesy picture of me.
We also want you to share your party with us. Go to cnn.com/iparty. Send us pictures, share a message and we'll try to use it on New Year's Eve, live. And if you're having a great party on New Year's Eve, you got to send it to us, we'll put the picture up as long as it's clean and not too, I do not know what. That's it for us tonight. Larry King is next. Thanks for watching. I'll see you tomorrow.
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