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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Rod Blagojevich Found Guilty; Michele Bachmann Announces Presidential Candidacy
Aired June 27, 2011 - 22:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Coming up a little later on 360: Casey Anthony's defense tries to get the death penalty taken off the table. But will the move work? We will tell you the latest. And we're getting closer to the answer whether or not Casey Anthony will testify. That's later tonight.
But we begin tonight, as we always do, "Keeping Them Honest," with a candidate for president who's campaigning against big government, even though she and her family are personally benefiting from government money.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R-MN), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I want my candidacy for the presidency of the United States to stand for a moment when we, the people, stand once again for the independence from a government that has gotten too big and spends too much and has taken away too much of our liberties.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann jumping into the Republican race for president today, declaring her candidacy in Waterloo, Iowa. She chairs the Tea Party caucus and her anti-big- government record is nothing new.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BACHMANN: After the $700 billion bailout, the trillion-dollar stimulus and the massive budget bill with over 9,000 earmarks.
No more earmarks.
I voted no, not once, but twice, on the $700 billion bailout.
BACHMANN: I voted against every bailout that came after that. I voted against the stimulus bills.
Our heads are spinning right now with the bailout mania.
Out-of-control spending has consequences.
The federal government continues to spend more money than what it takes in.
More spending yet again, spending that this country simply cannot afford.
Cut the spending.
Stopping the spending.
Stop spending money that we don't have.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Michele Bachmann speaking out against government bailouts, earmarks, and handouts. But, keeping her honest, it turns out she's not only benefited personally from government money over the years. It seems she's also lobbied for it.
There's her husband's counseling clinic, Bachmann and Associates. He's a psychologist who clinics offer what they call Christian counseling. According to "The Los Angeles Times," citing Minnesota state records, the clinic received nearly $30,000 in government money since 2006.
We did our own digging and learned that $24,000 of it came from a state grant financed totally by federal money. Then there's her late father-in-law's farm in Wisconsin in which she's a partner. We got this information from a government watchdog group called the Environmental Working Group.
According to the EWG's farm subsidy database, the farm got more than nearly a quarter million dollars between 1995 and 2008, mostly in federal corn and dairy subsidies. Congresswoman Bachmann was asked about both the clinic and the farm over the weekend.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "FOX NEWS SUNDAY")
BACHMANN: The money that went to the clinic was actually training money for employees. The clinic did not get the money. And my husband and I did not get the money either. That's mental health training money that went to employees.
Number two, regarding the farm, the farm is my father-in-law's farm. It's not my husband and my farm. It's my father-in-law's farm. And my husband and I have never gotten a penny of money from the farm.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, as for the clinic, according to "The L.A. Times," yes, that money was earmarked for training employees, training which obviously benefits the clinic.
As for not getting a penny from the farm, her own financial documents show that isn't so. They reveal between $32,000 and $105,000 of income between 2006 and 2009.
In public, meantime, she was railing against and voting against federal farm payments, voting no on a 2008 farm subsidy bill. Yet, the very next year, she wrote Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack praising government price support programs and asking for more -- quote -- "I would encourage you to take any additional steps necessary to prevent further deterioration of these critical industries," she writes, "such as making additional commodities purchases," in other words, more government intervention in the marketplace benefiting her constituents and herself while she rails against big government intervening in the marketplace.
Bob Schieffer asked her about that contradiction yesterday on CBS' "Face the Nation," and she dodged the question. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "FACE THE NATION")
BOB SCHIEFFER, HOST, "FACE THE NATION": What about farm subsidies? You benefit from farm subsidies on your family farm. Do you think we ought to think about cutting those back?
BACHMANN: Well, I think everything needs to be on the table right now, every part of government. I will tell you one thing that should be on the table. Under Barack Obama the last two years, the number of federal limousines for bureaucrats has increased 73 percent in two years. I can't think of anything more reprehensible than seeing bureaucrats on their cell phones in the back - 73 percent increase in the number of federal limousines in the last two years, for heaven's sakes.
SCHIEFFER: But, Congresswoman, you're not seriously saying that eliminating limousine service is anywhere equal to reducing farm subsidies?
BACHMANN: What I'm saying is that I think that's an easy one that we need to do. Clearly President Obama is not serious about cutting spending.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: We invited her on the program tonight, by the way. Her people refused, saying Ms. Bachmann was -- quote -- "booked solid" all week.
She did, however, appear on "Sean Hannity" tonight, where she was not asked about this at all. She also plans a full slate of appearances on tomorrow's network morning shows. We will see if they ask her.
Joining me now, John King, host of CNN's "JOHN KING, USA" every weeknight, also chief political analyst Gloria Borger.
So, John, relatively speaking, I guess a relatively small amount of government money over many years, but it does raise questions for a candidate who's made her name attacking big government spending.
JOHN KING, HOST, "JOHN KING, USA": It absolutely does.
And it raises those questions even at a higher volume because she's rising in the polls. And she is, right now, Anderson, like her or not, the most influential person, the person most shaping the Republican race for president right now, because of her rise in Iowa. She's now tied with Mitt Romney for the lead in Iowa.
Because of that, Governor Pawlenty's campaign, Speaker Gingrich's campaign, all these other campaigns are now reacting to Michele Bachmann. So she faces a higher credibility test. And she will face these questions. What did you do with the money? What exact money did you get? And the credibility questions that you're asking. How can you rail against all this government spending, government involvement in the marketplace when, to a degree, even though there's no evidence she's done anything wrong, she's eligible for these payments or applied for the grant for the business, that she took government money at a time when she's out there saying it's such a horrible thing.
COOPER: Gloria, I want to show our viewers the poll that John's talking about. It shows Congresswoman Bachmann statistically tied as the front-runner for the Iowa caucuses. She has clearly got momentum.
What does it mean for the primary at this point?
GLORIA BORGER, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, I think, to me, she seems to me so far to be at least the Howard Dean of this race on the Republican side.
Remember when Howard Dean gave John Kerry a run for his money in 2004? Nobody kind of expected him to do that. He came up from out of nowhere, but he had a very strong base within the party. He had the liberal base within the party.
She has got the Tea Party fiscal conservative base. And until somebody like Rick Perry gets in, governor of Texas, which I believe he will, she's going to take up a lot of the oxygen.
And I think, you know, today, it was interesting. Mitt Romney himself complimented Michele Bachmann for the -- quote -- "traction" she's getting in the campaign.
COOPER: It's interesting, Gloria, though. A lot of liberals today and liberal commentators were attacking her for -- she misspoke. She thought -- she was talking about John Wayne. She was talking about John Wayne Gacy.
COOPER: Clearly, candidates make mistakes, misspeak all the time, so we're not focusing on that at all tonight.
But I do want to play the question that had a lot of people talking over the weekend put to Congressman Bachmann put by Chris Wallace over the weekend. Let's watch.
BORGER: Yes. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "FOX NEWS SUNDAY")
CHRIS WALLACE, HOST, "FOX NEWS SUNDAY": Are you a flake?
BACHMANN: Well, I think that would be insulting, to say something like that, because I'm a serious person.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Chris Wallace has since apologized.
Would that question ever be asked to a male candidate?
BORGER: Look, I think it's just easier to ask it of a woman.
For some reason, there seems to be a different threshold. I looked back to Governor Moonbeam of California, Jerry Brown. I'm not sure anybody directly asked him whether he was a flake.
But in the end, in talking to some people who work for Michele Bachmann, they say it worked to her advantage, because she was able to kind of chastise Chris Wallace. He did apologize later, as you say.
But she was also able to recite her resume and tell people why she should be taken seriously. But I do believe that there's a different threshold for a woman candidate. Just ask Hillary Clinton about that.
COOPER: John, a lot of people like to put Michele Bachmann in sort of a Sarah Palin mode. The fact is, she's not a Sarah Palin.
COOPER: And if the polls are accurate, she seems at this point a lot more formidable as a presidential candidate.
KING: There are a lot of people right now, Anderson, who understand Iowa very well who believe she's the favorite to win the Iowa caucuses.
Now, it's very hard -- this is my seventh presidential campaign -- very hard for me to sit her tonight and give you a reasonable scenario that shows Michele Bachmann being the Republican nominee for president.
However, I can give you a very good scenario that shows her having a dramatic impact on this race. If she wins Iowa, that essentially kills the Pawlenty candidacy. It probably kills the Gingrich candidacy, if it lasts that long.
If you're Governor Romney, you're looking Michele Bachmann right now because you're the front-runner in this race. The first race now, if you're not Governor Romney, of the other eight candidates -- and maybe Governor Perry will get in and there be nine other candidates -- is to emerge as one of the alternatives to the front-runner. Michele Bachmann has stolen that mantle at the moment. Long way to go, but she's surprised a lot of people. She is going to raise a lot of money in this first quarter. And with that, though, Anderson, with the success comes the tougher questions. That's her next challenge. She's a House member and she has to prove now she can be a serious candidate for president.
BORGER: And, Anderson, I think it may have happened a little quickly. I was talking to somebody who is close to her today and he said to me, we're not ready for all of this attention yet.
And she may not be ready for all of this attention yet. As you say, she's full of gaffes. She's got to learn the difference between being a congressional candidate and being a presidential candidate, which is a whole different playing field. And it's clear that she's not comfortable in these kinds of unscripted events.
She did very well at the debate, at the CNN debate, because she had her talking points.
COOPER: But you know what?
COOPER: But let me jump in here, because, to her credit, I have seen her -- she's come on this program. I have seen her go on Chris Matthews' program.
COOPER: There's a lot of these Republican candidates who will not do that, who will only stick to...
COOPER: Michele Bachmann, whether you like her or not -- and viewers are -- or voters are obviously divided -- she goes out there and she gets into the fray.
BORGER: She does.
COOPER: And I got to give her -- she won't come on the show tonight to answer this question, but in general, I give her respect for doing that.
KING: But she will come soon. And you know she will. I have had her on the program where I asked her -- she made some ludicrous claim early in the Libya intervention about some 30,000 people killed by the United States and NATO. She said she saw it in a newspaper report.
You had her on. You grilled her about when the president made the trip to India. She was quoting this ridiculous blog posting that it was costing this exorbitant amount of money, and then she said, well, I was just quoting that report.
I had her on the program a little more than a month ago and she said, yes, she understands now there's a higher bar now for her. She can't make those factual mistakes as a candidate for president. She did make one today. But she understands -- the thing you have to give her some credit for is, she's not afraid to go out and take her harpoons.
BORGER: And that's the difference between Michele Bachmann and Sarah Palin.
Michele Bachmann is willing to kind of confront these issues. Lots of Republicans at first called her the Mini-Me to Palin. And she really isn't, because she will answer your questions directly, if you can get her on the show. And I think that's the difference between her and Palin.
BORGER: She's really willing to say, OK, here's what I believe and maybe she turns out to be wrong, but at least she does it. You're right.
COOPER: Well, she's had a whole career, too, as a lawyer before even getting into politics.
BORGER: Exactly. Exactly.
COOPER: So, anyway, she's a force to be reckoned with, no doubt about it.
John King, Gloria Borger, thank you.
Let us know what you think. We're on Facebook. Follow me on Twitter @AndersonCooper. I will be tweeting tonight.
Coming up: new signs of horrific torture and murder in Syria, victims as young as 13 years old, other videos of people just being beating by security forces. The Syrian government is still insisting there's no crackdown. They actually say that: There's no crackdown.
They say they're -- that it's extremist groups who are doing the killing. We will hear from a government spokesperson and woman in hiding in Syria right now.
And later: the leader investigator in the Casey Anthony case back on the stand in her murder trial -- plus, why the court proceedings suddenly and mysteriously screeched to a halt over the weekend, the latest on that coming up.
COOPER: Well, we have been getting new video in all day posted online by people in Syria. And every clip, revolting as it is to watch, is part of a growing pattern. Every clip shows a person, often a child, each person has been killed, each body, again, some as young as 13, each one has been brutalized. Some have been mutilated.
Now, I'm going to tell you right now most of what I and our producers saw today, we simply can't even show you on the screen. But some of it must be seen, so that no one can deny the truth of what's happening in Syria, because that's what the government there is trying to do. They're trying to deny the truth of what's happening.
If you feel you have to look away, look away now, but please listen if you can, at least.
Thirteen-year-old Reeta (ph) was killed allegedly by security forces in place called al-Kiswah just outside Damascus. We're not showing you the other side of his face, which is smashed to pieces.
More new video, this is the tortured body of someone named Obeyda Akram (ph). He was detained on June 17, we're told -- 10 days later, his body was returned. This is the way the government operates. The bodies are returned to send a message, to strike fear.
This is from Tareq (ph) from Homs -- this is Tareq from Homs taken two months ago -- the voice on the tape saying his body shows signs of electric shock, whippings, stabbings, various burns on his arms and other parts of his body -- an activist telling us Syrian forces returned his body on the condition he would be buried immediately. They told the family not to open the coffin.
They told the parents of Hamza Ali al-Khatib, who was tortured and murdered and returned a month later, brutalized, his penis cut off, just 13 years old. And there are more like Hamza, but the images are simply unwatchable, including a 13-year-old tortured to death after disappearing May 29, his body returned June 18 almost unrecognizable.
And as this is happening, the government goes on saying it's not happening.
Here's the regime's vice foreign minister with CNN's Hala Gorani.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HALA GORANI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Why are Syrian security forces and the military -- and this has been the testimony of many people in some of those cities -- why are they shooting at demonstrators and, in some cases, killing them? Why is -- why is that crackdown happening in Syria right now?
FAYSSAL MEKDAD, SYRIAN VICE FOREIGN MINISTER: There's no crackdown. There is a crackdown from these military groups against the government and against civilians.
GORANI: So who's doing the killing? Who's doing the killing? MEKDAD: The killing was initiated and is still going on by these extremist groups.
GORANI: Who are they?
MEKDAD: They are extremist groups, extremist religious groups, groups that are financed by -- from outside Syria, and groups that do not want to achieve reform in Syria.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Unnamed groups, no evidence, unnamed extremists financed by unnamed outsiders.
In his last speech to the country, Syria's dictator, Bashar al- Assad, blamed 64,400 roving Syrian criminals. Clearly, the regime needs to get its story straight, or it doesn't really have a story that fits the facts or video that keeps pouring in, chilling pictures, these from outside Damascus on Friday, security thugs literally jamming a protester into the trunk of a car, beating them.
You watch as someone rushes into the crowd, sticks, and batons, and jackboots and fists, trying to rescue the guy. And you see him beaten senseless. The trunk is shut. And another person, someone's father, uncle, best friend, is hauled away like human freight.
Or no less chilling, video of a young man being led away by security forces, his face unmarked for now. His future? Well, we can't tell. We don't know what happened to him.
Each new tragedy seems to bring more people into the streets. This weekend was no different.
And I spoke about it with a woman whose husband was taken away weeks ago, Razan Zaitouneh. She, herself is a fugitive. She's on the run right now in Syria, her life in danger. We talked by phone earlier.
COOPER: There were more protests and more brutality over the weekend. What can you tell us about what happened?
RAZAN ZAITOUNEH, SYRIAN ACTIVIST: During last week, actually, the protests became daily. On this same time, the security campaign against the protests and the protesters are still continuing.
More than 1,000 persons get arrested during last week only. And many of them are students of university.
COOPER: We're watching video right now of people being beaten by security forces in the street. When somebody gets injured like that, can they go to a hospital? What happens to them?
ZAITOUNEH: Most of them get scared to go to hospital, because usually what's going on that if anybody goes to national hospital, they will be arrested by the security inside the hospital.
In another cases, somebody got killed even inside the hospital, and we reported many such cases, actually. That's why most of injured people prefer to be at home and get medical treatment at home, and not to go to the hospital.
COOPER: There's a meeting of opposition leaders in Damascus today, a public meeting that the government said that they would allow. You did not attend. Why?
ZAITOUNEH: I believe they have -- those people who were in this meeting have the right to meet and to discuss the situation about their country.
But, in the same time, this meeting held while many hundreds and dozens of people got killed and arrested during last week. Now we had 1,005 people got killed, civilians.
Only today, another prisoner got killed inside detention under torture. So, the whole security practices are continuing. The regime cannot say that they are allowing dialogue at the same time when they are continuing to kill people and arrest people.
COOPER: I saw a video of a person, a man who had died. And it looked like there were marks on various parts of his body, possibly where there was electricity put. It was hard to tell.
Do you know what kinds of torture they subject people to?
ZAITOUNEH: All kinds of torture is practicing against the detainees, started from beating and all over the bodies, and also using electricity, burning by cigarettes, using another method to beat hardly on the head especially.
So it's all kinds of torture, which led to kills. They torture to kill. It's not just an accident that those people got killed under torture.
COOPER: There are also reports and video of a 13-year-old boy who was reportedly shot and killed by Syrian security forces in al- Kiswah. What do you know about him?
ZAITOUNEH: Alawiyah wasn't the only child who got killed during last week.
During last week, eight children got shot by the security during the peaceful protests in Homs, Hama, in al-Kiswah and other suburbs of Damascus. Now the number of children who got killed since the revolution has started is about 100 children.
They don't make any difference. When they started to use the force, when they started to shoot people, they made no difference between boy or child or an adult, between girl or boy. It's just using force in all kinds to stop the protest and to force people to stop their movements.
COOPER: Thank you for talking to us. Stay safe.
ZAITOUNEH: Thank you.
COOPER: Part of the regime's mythology is that they're not brutalizing their own people, but, in fact, are saving them from thugs and extremists. That's what they keep saying.
They made a point of describing their occupation of a town called Jisr Al-Shugur that way. Thousands of residents, knowing that's simply not true, have fled to neighboring Turkey. We have talked to them. Our Arwa Damon was with them last week.
Well, this evening, I spoke with CNN's Arwa Damon, who is now in Damascus, but who was allowed into the city by Syrian authorities under very, very tight restrictions.
COOPER: Arwa, a new video posted this weekend of a 13-year-old boy reportedly shot and killed by Syrian military, do you know anything about what happened to this boy?
ARWA DAMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, that incident is said to have taken place in one of the Damascus suburbs during the demonstrations where activists were reporting that Syrian security forces indiscriminately opened fire on those who were protesting. And among those who were killed is this young child.
There's video posted to YouTube whose authenticity CNN can not independently verify, but it shows a woman who is identified as the boy's mother is sobbing hysterically, cursing the Syrian security forces, cursing the president himself.
And, Anderson, it's because of images like this that now we do have the position that the opposition is taking, one that's moved from what we saw at the beginning of this uprising, a demand for reform, to now a demand for the removal of the regime. And we do have to say that this specific neighborhood is one of the neighborhoods that we asked our government minders to go to on Friday, but we were told that that request had not been fulfilled. We have not been able to receive that permission.
COOPER: The government minders, though, did take you to this town Jisr Al-Shugur this weekend. That's a place that's been hotly contested, where many people have fled from now and are across the border in Turkey.
What did you see in this town? And could you actually get an accurate account of what happened there?
DAMON: Well, Anderson, we very much saw what the government wanted us to see and hear. And they were very much showing us what they said was evidence to corroborate their claims. Their narrative is that they were simply targeted armed gangs. They said there were thousands of armed individuals when they entered Jisr Al-Shugur. And they say that this terrorist element was trying to establish an al Qaeda-style Islamic caliphate inside Syria, and that they went in and targeted it at the request of the residents.
They also took us around to a number of buildings that visibly had sustained heavy damage. There were bullet holes in one of them. A lot of the walls had been broken down by what appeared to be an explosion. And this is where the government is saying that assault took place that killed more than 100 Syrian security forces, and that is what led to the military crackdown.
Of course, this differs greatly from the numerous stories that we had been hearing in recent weeks from those refugees that we were talking to along the Syria/Turkey border. They were saying that they were simply peaceful demonstrators, that the security forces were targeting them indiscriminately, and that they fled fearing this military crackdown because they believed that they would be massacred.
But, Anderson, it's always difficult, if not impossible, for us while we're in Syria to get an independent idea of what's happening, because we're constantly operating in the shadow of our government minders.
COOPER: Arwa Damon in Damascus -- Arwa, thanks.
Well, up next, a stunned Rod Blagojevich, the former governor of Illinois, hears the verdict in his corruption case. Did he try to sell President Obama's Senate seat? Find out.
And today's emotionally charged testimony in the Amanda Knox case. Remember that? Today, one of the men also convicted in the brutal murder of her roommate, a man she claimed she hardly knew, told the court what he believes happened that night.
Also, Casey Anthony ahead.
COOPER: Two trials to tell you about tonight in "Crime & Punishment," the Casey Anthony trial, but also the Amanda Knox trial, which has begun again.
In the Italian city of Perugia today, high drama in an appeal hearing in the Amanda Knox case -- you may remember she's the Seattle student convicted of killing her British roommate and fellow student four years ago in a headline-grabbing murder.
Meredith Kercher was found stabbed to death at the house she shared with Knox. Now, most of her clothes had been torn from her body, her throat slashes. The Italian court also convicted Knox's Italian boyfriend, a guy named Raffaele Sollecito, and, in a separate trial, another man named Rudy Guede. Now, Knox and her family have charged that she was railroaded by a zealous prosecutor, and they're hoping the appeal will set her free. Most experts think the appeal hinges on the forensic evidence. Independent experts are taking another look at it. We should hear about that later this week.
But today, Amanda Knox' defense team took another crack at this guy, Rudy Guede. CNN senior international correspondent Dan Rivers is in Perugia. I spoke with him earlier.
COOPER: So Dan, how was Amanda Knox's defense different in this appeal than in the first trial?
DAN RIVERS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Anderson, this appeal differs in two crucial ways. Firstly, they were able to question new witnesses, requested by the defense, that they were unable to question the first time around.
Now, these are people, prisoners, that Rudy Guede has supposedly confessed to inside prison, saying that he thought Amanda Knox and her then-boyfriend Rafael Sollecito were innocent. The problem is that since Guede has come into court and given evidence in this appeal, he's flatly denied having talked about the case at all in prison.
The second important strand that's different to the original case is they're going to reexamine some of the DNA evidence. They'll go over the methodology scrutinizing that, and they'll call into doubt some key planks of the original trial that relied on that DNA evidence.
COOPER: Well, I guess the knife, which the prosecution says was the murder weapon that she was stabbed in the neck with, it did have a piece of skin that was believed to have belonged to the victim. But that it -- the original time it couldn't be retested according to international standards, right?
RIVERS: Yes. They're basically saying that the tissue that was found on the knife was such a tiny amount, low-copy DNA, they're saying, it's been impossible to replicate those tests.
So starting this coming Thursday, there will be some new forensic experts who will give evidence, and they'll go back over the problems with replicating those tests on the knife.
They'll also go over some of the problems alleged by the defense that the crime scene was seriously contaminated during the investigation. For example, the only real piece of evidence in the bedroom where Meredith Kercher was killed, that tied Sollecito to the crime scene was the clasp of Meredith Kercher's bra, and that wasn't discovered for 47 days, according to the defense. And so they're saying that, you know, that means it could have been contaminated by forensic officers going in and out without, you know, covers on their shoes and that kind of thing. COOPER: And the defense got a shock today. They called this guy, Rudy Guede, to the witness stand today, but on the stand, he actually gave his strongest statement so far against Amanda Knox and her ex-boyfriend.
RIVERS: Yes. I mean, this kind of backfired in a way. Because they -- I think the defense were hoping that, under the pressure of cross-examination, Guede may crumble and admit, OK, in fact Amanda Knox was completely innocent and so was Sollecito and, in fact, he did it with, perhaps, someone else or on his own. In fact, that didn't happen at all. The reverse happened. He actually went further in accusing Knox and Sollecito of being involved with this murder. Before he'd only kind of implied their guilt. Today he came out outright and said he thought they were guilty.
COOPER: And this is the first time that Amanda Knox and her ex- boyfriend, Sollecito, and this guy Guede, were all in the courtroom together for the first time in a couple of years. How did they seem?
RIVERS: It was a pretty kind of powerful day of evidence, I think. The atmosphere, you know, was pretty electric. Amanda Knox was clearly very nervous going into this. You could see her taking some deep breaths just after she walked into what is really quite a small courtroom. She was sitting just a few yards from Guede. She had a brief chat with Sollecito, as well. We couldn't really hear what they were saying.
She then gave dramatically, a statement halfway through the proceedings today. Halfway through that, she almost kind of broke down to cry, so you could feel that it was very emotionally charged. She regained her composure, but it was obvious she was nervous. She knew how much was hanging on this -- on this day of evidence today.
COOPER: Dan Rivers, appreciate it. Dan, thanks.
COOPER: Programming note. This Friday night, we're going to have a lot more on the story in a CNN special, "Murder Abroad: The Amanda Knox Story." That's at 10 p.m. Eastern here on CNN.
Just ahead, surprise in the Casey Anthony trial. Today we found out why the judge shut down the court over the weekend. Plus, today's dramatic testimony. But first, Joe Johns joins us with a "360 Bulletin" -- Joe.
JOE JOHNS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, Libya's head man, Muammar Gadhafi, is officially a wanted man. Today, the International Criminal Court issued warrants for him, one of his sons and a brother- in-law, charging them with crimes against humanity. A Libyan official says the charges are a cover for NATO's military operations.
In Illinois, former Governor Rod Blagojevich was convicted on 17 of 20 counts in his corruption trial. The charges were in connection with his attempt to sell the Senate seat vacated by President Obama. In Nebraska, officials are fighting to keep the flooding Missouri river away from two nuclear reactors. So far they say they've kept water away from the power sources that help keep nuclear fuel under control, so there's no danger of meltdowns like those at Japanese reactors earlier this year.
A picture may be worth a thousand words, but over the weekend in Denver, an old picture of Billy the Kid was worth $2.3 million to billionaire William Koch. The 130-year-old photo is said to be the only authentic picture of the legendary outlaw. And here's the thing, Anderson: The Kid reportedly only paid 25 cents to have it taken.
COOPER: I like that, on second reference, he's "The Kid."
JOHNS: Yes. That's nice.
COOPER: Yes. Tonight's "Shot," Joe, I saw this last weekend. I watched it a couple times this weekend. A feisty and talented Chihuahua that would impress Fred Astaire. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I love this. It goes on and on. We found the amateur video on YouTube, obviously. The pup's name is Willie. He was able to move and groove on his hind legs for more than a minute. And the best part gets later, where's he's just, like, staring into the camera with his soulful little eyes.
Plenty of serious stuff ahead, though. A lot more tonight. Up next, another bombshell in the Casey Anthony trial. Today we learned why the judge called an unexpected recess on Saturday. It's kind of bizarre. We'll tell you that.
Also, the latest on why the jurors were asked to smell garbage from Casey Anthony's -- from the trunk of her car.
Plus, a TSA agent made a 95-year-old woman take off her adult diaper as part of a security check. They said it was official policy. Does the TSA stand behind the policy? What really went on? Details ahead.
COOPER: "Crime & Punishment," a marathon day in the Casey Anthony trial and a mystery solved. Today we learned why the judge called an unexpected recess on Saturday which brought the trial to a halt. The reason, which you'll hear in a moment, surprised a lot of people.
Judge Perry had been adamant about keeping the trial on schedule. Today he kept court in session until after 7 p.m., possibly to make up for Saturday's delay. Martin Savidge has all the details.
MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Casey Anthony was all smiles as court started today, chatting with her defense team. She seemed almost refreshed, which is surprising, considering how she spent her weekend.
BELVIN PERRY, JUDGE: The legal issue has arisen unrelated to the issue that we talked about first thing this morning, dealing with Dr. Furton, that would necessitate us recessing for today.
SAVIDGE: It was an interruption that stunned court observers and a mystery, too, until today.
PERRY: On Saturday, the defense filed a motion to determine competency to proceed. Based upon that motion, the court ordered that the defendant to be examined by three psychologists to determine her competency to proceed.
SAVIDGE: A competency evaluation for Casey Anthony, recommended by her own defense team. After she was examined by two psychologists and a psychiatrist, the judge reviewed their findings and said...
PERRY: Based upon the reports that the court has reviewed, the court will find that the defendant is competent to continue to proceed.
SAVIDGE: Then, it was on to the day's first witness.
JOSE BAEZ, CASEY'S ATTORNEY: The defense calls detective Uri Melich (ph).
SAVIDGE: The lead investigator in the case. Defense attorney, Jose Baez, wanted to raise doubts about how well the investigation was handed.
BAEZ: Let's talk about Mr. Anthony's cell phone records.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
BAEZ: Do those include cell tower information?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No they do not. It's a PDF form, not a spreadsheet. They do not have cell tower information.
BAEZ: And would that information have been useful to you as to -- being able to determine Mr. George Anthony's movement? Or his cell-phone movement?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, if I had a reason to even believe that that would play a part in this case, which at the time I did not.
SAVIDGE: Baez also brought up Roy Kronk, to continue to cast suspicion on the meter reader who discovered Caylee's remains in December of 2008.
BAEZ: You also testified that you never confiscated Mr. Kronk's computer?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I don't recall getting his computer.
SAVIDGE: The next expert witness of the day was Kenneth Furton, a forensic expert. The goal for the defense: call into the question the presence of chloroform found in the trunk of Casey's car. Furton noted the chloroform could come from a household cleaner like bleach but under cross-examination admitted there was no evidence of any bleach in Casey's car.
JEFF ASHTON, PROSECUTOR: You would expect that, if -- if bleach were spilled upon a dark fabric surface, that the dark fabric surface would reflect some evidence of bleach having been spilled on it, wouldn't you?
KENNETH FURTON, FORENSIC EXPERT: If the source of the bleach was being placed directly on the carpet, then, yes.
SAVIDGE: Before the day ended the defense showed the jury a November 2008 search for Caylee's remains. The search was at the same area where Caylee's body was found a month later. The defense implying, as they have all along, that Caylee's body was dumped after November, when Casey Anthony was already in jail.
COOPER: So Martin, that's the defense's hope, that they can prove that the body was moved after Casey was already in jail. But there's another side to the story.
SAVIDGE (on camera): Well, that's right. And the prosecution would maintain that, no, the body was never moved, that in fact, little Caylee had probably been in the woods where her body was discovered very shortly after the time in which she disappeared.
And they began to try to poke holes in the case of those private investigators, and these were the fellows that took the video that the jury saw at the end of the day. What they basically did was they said, "Well, how carefully did you really search the woods? I mean, you say you went in there. You had a video camera. But did you thoroughly or would you say you thoroughly searched the woods?"
And in fact they got one of those private investigators to say, no, it was not a thorough investigation by any means, which of course, is what the prosecution is saying. They missed it. Her body was there. They just simply didn't see it.
COOPER: Martin Savidge. Thanks, Martin.
COOPER: A day of surprises. Sunny Hostin, Jean Casarez are covering the trial for "In Session" on TruTV. I spoke to them a short time ago.
COOPER: Jean, do we have any indication as to why the defense filed a motion to determine Casey's competency and why now?
JEAN CASAREZ, CORRESPONDENT, TRUTV'S "IN SESSION": You know, I don't think we'll ever know, because that's the product of a confidential communication.
But we can go by the motion that says that, with conversations with Casey, they believed there was an issue as to her competency, her ability to aid and assist her attorneys.
But Anderson, the devil's in the details, because if you look at No. 6 of the law for competency, it includes testifying relevantly. So if they had a concern whether she was competent to testify and appreciated and understood the potential penalties that she is up against, they may have felt in good faith they had to file this motion.
COOPER: I mean, Sunny, isn't it kind of unusual for competency hearings to be happening this late in the trial?
SUNNY HOSTIN, CONTRIBUTOR, TRUTV'S "IN SESSION": Extremely unusual. This is something, Anderson, that is generally dealt with at the beginning of a trial. We hear that all the time. I've dealt with it myself as a prosecutor. This was very unusual.
But as Jean said, it likely came up during their discussions with her. Either Friday or Saturday morning. Because the legal standard here is whether or not she understood the legal proceedings in front of her and whether or not she could aid in her defense.
COOPER: And jurors, Jean, were given pieces of trash from Casey's car to sniff. What was the prosecution trying to prove by having them do that?
HOSTIN: This was the defense witness. And the defense's witness, Dr. Furton, said that the smell in the trunk was decomposition, but it was the smell of trash.
So on cross-examination the prosecutor, Jeff Ashton, said, "OK, you want to see the trash. Let's look at the trash." He takes it out, and there's no meat products. There's no cheese products, and the prosecution is saying there never was. It was just the wrappers.
And he asked for it to be passed around to the jury. So they were to look at it. Anderson, some of them just decided they wanted to smell it. And some jurors took out their hand sanitizers after that to sanitize their hands.
COOPER: It's also interesting, Jean, because we heard so many prosecution witnesses earlier on talking about the distinctive odor of decomposition. Clearly, if they're sniffing trash, you know, that's -- that's an odor, but it's not that distinctive odor of decomposition. CASAREZ: You're so right. Because what this signifies is they wanted to smell, so odor is important to them in the jury. You're right.
COOPER: Sonny, the defense filed another motion, asking the court to declare Florida's death penalty unconstitutional and urging the judge to declare a mistrial. It sounds like they're trying to, again, do what ever they can to throw up whatever and se what sticks. A competency hearing. A mistrial? The death penalty unconstitutional?
HOSTIN: Well, certainly, it sounds like that but they're doing their job. They have to do that.
I think their motion about the death penalty has a bit of meat, because earlier last week, a Miami federal court judge did find that there was a problem with the procedure, with the death penalty procedure.
And that is because in Florida, although you need 12 people to reach a unanimous verdict, you don't need 12 people to unanimously recommend the death penalty. And they don't even have to explain to the defendant or the judge, why they determined the death penalty was appropriate. So no one really know what is the aggravating factors are so this Miami judge said no way. This is the death penalty you have to give the judge and defendant the reason why you determined that death is an appropriate penalty here. And so really, Judge Perry may or may not have to deal with it.
COOPER: Jean, I'm always wary of critiquing how people appear in court, because you never know how people are going to react under stressful situations. But a lot of people were talking and kind of taken aback today by how smiley Casey Anthony was in court today.
CASAREZ: She was. When she walked in the door this morning, she had a big smile on her face. To play devil's advocate for a second, she's in protective custody. She never has visitors. She doesn't have any interaction. So I'm sure it is very exciting for her to just have human interaction, and that may have produced the smile.
COOPER: Jean, is the defense still talking about ending by Wednesday or Thursday?
CASAREZ: You know, we'll see. Because there was no court on Saturday, they're a little bit behind schedule. But I think the big issue is, is Casey going to testify? And we still don't know. A three forensic psychiatrist, psychologist panel deemed her competent to go forward so the trial continues.
COOPER: It's amazing, Sunny. You think about this. You know, they brought up all the stuff in the opening statements about sexual abuse with the father and the brother. There's no evidence of it. They haven't introduced any evidence whatsoever at this point, and they're still talking about, you know, ending at the end of the week.
HOSTIN: That's right. And that's why I've said from the very beginning. He put -- Jose Baez placed Casey Anthony on the witness stand during his opening statements. I mean, who else is going to testify to the sexual abuse? Who else is going to testify that Caylee actually died an accidental death by drowning?
The only person that holds the key to that testimony is Casey Anthony. They have to put her on the witness stand, Anderson. And if they don't, I think it's game over for this defense. Because they made all those promises in opening statements, and they're all going to break every single one to this jury.
COOPER: Sonny Hostin, appreciate.
Jean Casarez, as well, thanks.
COOPER: Fascinating stuff. Outrage over the story of a 94 -- excuse me, 95-year-old cancer patient patted down at an airport. Her daughter says she even had to take off her adult diaper to get on the plane. The TSA has released a statement about how agents treated the elderly woman. We'll tell you what they are saying next.
And ahead, "The RidicuList." Tonight, Kim Kardashian's haters. Dare to doubt the proverbial junk from the proverbial trunk, and they wind up on "The RidicuList."
COOPER: Coming up, "The RidicuList," and it's Kim Kardashian's haters join the list. No ifs, ands or buts. But first, Joe Johns joins us with a "360 News & Business Bulletin" -- Joe.
JOHNS: Anderson, the TSA is defending agents who patted down a cancer-stricken 95-year-old woman at the northwest Florida regional airport. Her daughter says agents also made it clear that she couldn't get on the plane unless they could inspect her adult diaper, so she took it off. In a statement the TSA says it reviewed the incident and that agents followed proper procedure and that they didn't order removal of the diaper.
A victory for video-game makers. In a 7-2 ruling the Supreme Court today struck down a California law that would have banned the sale of video games, violent video games to children. The law was called an "infringement on First Amendment rights."
The Los Angeles Dodgers filed for bankruptcy protection today. Owner Frank McCourt, who's been locked in a bitter divorce, said baseball commissioner Bud Selig has forced the team into the situation. Last week Selig refused to approve a $3 billion TV deal for the team, saying the deal was structured for McCourt's personal needs.
And the jacket Michael Jackson wore in the "Thriller" video was auctioned over the weekend with a big price tag, Anderson. The winning bid? $1.8 million.
JOHNS: Huge. Don't wear that out on the street.
COOPER: Yes, I guess not. Joe, thanks.
Time for "The RidicuList." And tonight we're adding Kim Kardashian haters because of what they've driven Kim to do.
For a while I've had this unsettling feeling that, I don't know, something just -- it was off, like the universe was slightly out of whack. Something was missing. I couldn't pinpoint the source of the feeling, but then it hit me. No one has really been saying much about Kim Kardashian's butt lately.
Well, Kim remedied that situation quite nicely on last night's episode of "Keeping up with the Kardashians."
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KIM KARDASHIAN, REALITY TV STAR: If this is what it takes to shut up the entire world that my butt is real, then I will happily do it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: You heard her right. Unbeknownst to me, the entire world will not stop talking about -- will not stop with the cracks about her butt, its veracity, so to speak.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KARDASHIAN: I can't even take this seriously. I've said numerous times, like, I haven't had plastic surgery. I haven't had butt implants.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Are butt implants really a thing? I mean, I've always thought they were kind of like snuff films. People talked about them, but has anyone actually seen one?
Any ways, Kim and her sisters have had enough of the lies, and frankly, I don't blame them. Last night in a very unscripted moment on their very unscripted reality show, Kim and the other one were on the computer and found the straw that broke the camel's backside.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KARDASHIAN: Tragedy struck Kim Kardashian last night on a private plane from New Jersey to Las Vegas. Her left butt cheek exploded.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They can make up completely fake stories. This is the same Web site that said Kim burned a raccoon.
(END VIDEO CLIP) COOPER: Forgetting the exploding butt cheek. I want to hear more about that raccoon.
But alas, it's all about the bun-jamins (ph). With Kim looking on, the other one came up with an idea of how to set the record straight, once and for all.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KARDASHIAN: Who the hell of a normal person gets butt implants?
KHLOE KARDASHIAN, REALITY TV STAR: I mean, if you want to them wrong, get an x-ray and...
KIM KARDASHIAN: An X-ray...
KHLOE KARDASHIAN: Of your ass to show there's no silicone in there.
KIM KARDASHIAN: Chloe, I think that's an amazing idea!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: It's kind of like watching Edwin Hubble first realize the universe is expanding. But would Kim go for the idea? Would she be willing to put the "ass" back in classy?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KIM KARDASHIAN: I really just want to get, like, a butt x-ray so I can show the whole world.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, congratulations, whole world. But wait a second. Will an X-ray really help us get to the bottom of this world crisis? I'm thinking that we need some kind of control group. Luckily, the other one being the Marie Curie of her times, has it covered.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KHLOE KARDASHIAN: Can we x-ray Kourtney's boobs so I can see what an implant looks like?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I bet when that doctor was in medical school, he dreamed of one day being able to save lives, to really help people. Congratulations.
All this X-raying seems like overkill, though. Anyone who's ever read a comic book knows all you really need to put this to rest is $1, plus postage and handling. But since Kim went to all the trouble of getting X-rays, since she got on the table and turned sideways and held her breath, while the entire world simultaneously held its breath -- let's look at this again -- we might as well hear the results. (SOUND EFFECT: DRUM ROLL)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No implant.
KIM KARDASHIAN: Shocker!
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All Kim.
KIM KARDASHIAN: I am so glad that I did this X-ray.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I think I speak for the whole world when I say, we are so glad, too, Kim. We are so glad, too.
We'll be right back.