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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Debt Battle Escalating; Terror Investigation Continues in Norway
Aired July 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: Good evening, everyone.
Breaking news tonight. Somewhere in that building, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says lawmaking magic can happen. And House John Boehner is hoping that members of his own party will -- and these are his words -- get their asses in line and support his debt reduction bill.
They will need some of that magic and some of those body parts in line to find a way out of the debt crisis before Tuesday's deadline. The breaking news tonight, House members will vote on Boehner's bill tomorrow. New details are emerging about it tonight, though. The Congressional Budget Office is weighing in.
But 53 senators are now on record on paper opposing it.
Kate Bolduan is working the story. She joins in a moment with some late details. Also tonight, Ari Fleischer and James Carville on the Republican challenge to the Republican speaker's bill. They get into a heated exchange in a moment.
Some of the members today in open rebellion, John McCain today snacking down, fellow Republicans. He's providing a reality check and so are the financial markets. The Dow industrials today dropping nearly 200 points, making it four losing days in a row. The Nasdaq and S&P down even more sharply.
Now, anyone with a 401(k) has got to be worried at this point and watching this closely or should be. But assume for a minute that Washington gets in gear and passes some kind of debt reduction deal before the Treasury runs out of money and the markets react.
Will it be the kind of deal that most Americans say they want? "Keeping Them Honest," the answer seems to be no. Take a look at the latest CNN/Opinion Research Center polling. It shows 64 percent prefer a budget plan with a mix of spending cuts and tax increases; 34 percent say cuts only.
That's consistent with other polling which is averaging nearly 2- 1 in favor of what President Obama and others call a balanced approach. He said on Monday that's what he wants. You say that's what you want by a 30-point margin. So why is the Boehner bill cuts only? And why is Democratic Senator Harry Reid's plan also cuts only?
Democrats have backed away from any measures that raise revenues to accommodate Republican demands. And Republicans say Americans are not willing to see any taxes go up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. ERIC CANTOR (R-VA), HOUSE MAJORITY LEADER: Right now this economy is ailing. And we don't believe, nor do I think the American people believe, that raising taxes is the answer.
REP. TOM PRICE (R), GEORGIA: I think what the American people appreciate is that you don't reinvigorate the economy by raising taxes.
REP. JOHN BOEHNER (R-OH), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: The American people don't want us to raise taxes.
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: The American people didn't want their taxes raised, and they wanted us to cut spending. They don't want compromise.
REP. SAM JOHNSON (R), TEXAS: It's time to cut spending, balance the budget, and pay down the debt for our children and our grandchildren without raising taxes.
REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R-MN), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: There is absolutely no appetite anywhere across the United States for increasing taxes.
REP. JIM JORDAN (R), OHIO: I think the American people are against raising taxes on the job creators out there.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, again, most polls show that's simply not true. As we showed you last week the phrase by the way job creator is a new talking point. It's how Republicans are now referring to wealthier Americans. Democrats, by the way, of course, refer to them as millionaires and billionaires and talk about private jets a lot. Talking points used by both sides in this debate.
Gloria Borger and David Gergen are with us tonight. We will talk to them in a moment.
First though Kate Bolduan is on Capitol Hill with all the latest.
Kate, you're getting late details on the revised plan from House Speaker Boehner. What do you know?
KATE BOLDUAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, that revised plan it did come out this evening with some new cost estimates which is the gold standard that every bill has to face in order to make it to the floor.
That revised plan is some welcome news, if you will, for House Speaker John Boehner thanks to a kind of technical fix. They were able to find more savings. And that's important for House Speaker John Boehner. It now according to these new cost estimates, it offers $917 billion in deficit reduction. While that still falls quite short of his original target of $1.2 trillion, it works. And here's why. Because it meets the test that he set out from the beginning was that cuts be more than the amount they raise the debt ceiling, which is $900 billion for his bill.
So this is very welcome news. They're putting this out there. They're moving forward with this vote. And it doesn't help in their efforts as they have been trying to wrangle the votes and secure all the support they can, Anderson, from their on party in these last couple days, but the vote could still be close.
COOPER: Yes. There's a lot of backroom negotiations here. So I just want to kind of spell it out for our viewers who maybe haven't been following all the details all day long.
At this point the vote for Boehner's bill is supposed to take place tomorrow. He had this meeting today, basically telling folks in the Republican Party as we said earlier to -- quote -- "get their asses in line." Does he have enough votes at this point?
BOLDUAN: At this moment, what I have been hearing from Republican leadership aides is that they say they're feeling confident and it's moving in the right direction.
They think they're getting the support that they can get. I was outside that meeting, and as members were coming out, more conservative members, who had said they were leaning no, they're now leaning more towards yes. And what I kept hearing over and over again is that we can't let the perfect be the enemy of the good, or, as many members put, the doable. So it seems that they are getting the message that the speaker was giving them in that meeting at this point.
COOPER: But there are today a lot of loud messages already coming from Democrats that if the plan passes in the House, it will not make it through the Senate, correct?
BOLDUAN: Absolutely. And that's kind of an important reality check here. If it does pass in the House it has the potential of hitting a huge roadblock as soon as it gets to the Senate.
At the same time that House Speaker John Boehner's office was putting out this release, this good news about this revised plan and the cost estimate, Senate Democrats released a letter at almost the same time with 53 signatures on it saying they don't support the plan in the Senate and really essentially making clear that it cannot pass.
So while all eyes are still on the House to see what happens with John Boehner's plan in the House, it has some serious problems in the Senate if it gets there.
COOPER: All right. Kate Bolduan, appreciate the late reporting. Thank you.
Joining me now is political analysts Gloria Borger and David Gergen.
Gloria, if you can, try to break this down. Say it passes in the House. It goes to the Senate. What are Harry Reid's options there?
GLORIA BORGER, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, yes, they're trying to figure that out right now. Look, it's not going to pass the Senate.
But John Boehner then has another decision to make. He quashed this revolt on the right, did a good job of getting that done today. But if this measure goes to the Senate and it doesn't pass, then there's another question if they go the legislative route this way. There's another question, which is, can he possibly compromise and bring his troops along with him, or is he going to have to compromise and understand that in order to get something through the House he's now going to have to start looking for Democratic votes?
Because once you start compromising with Harry Reid, you may just lose a lot of those Tea Party Republicans and you're going to have to get some Democrats in line to vote for this. So the whole dynamic really changes, Anderson, once this passes the House tomorrow if it does as expected.
COOPER: And you're getting late details from your sources on what's going on behind the scenes in the negotiations.
BORGER: Well, yes. You know, there's an outside track here, which is the legislative track. There's also an inside track. And on that inside track, I'm told that the vice president, who was originally involved in these negotiations to try to head this off at the pass, is still having conversations with people.
And of course, all eyes are upon the Senate Republican leader, Mitch McConnell. I have been told tonight that he and Biden communicate, but they are not in talks, whatever that means. So welcome to my world. Because McConnell supports the Boehner plan. So you know, what you have behind closed doors are people scrambling to try and figure out what they can do once the legislative track is kind of -- works its will.
COOPER: David, from your vantage point, where do you see this going if it does reach the Senate, the Boehner bill?
DAVID GERGEN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: I think we're about where we expected to be, Anderson. And that is as Gloria said, we have a Boehner bill and a Reid bill. Each one may pass -- well, the Boehner bill's going to pass the House, I think. The Reid bill may pass the Senate. But then they're both going to die in the other chamber.
And the real issue is what comes after that? What kind of compromise can be fashioned? And can you find a compromise that both sides can get enough votes from their own party to pass?
And there are enough similarities between the Boehner bill and the Reid bill that with the kind of craftsmanship of Mitch McConnell you might be able to put it together. They both leave out tax increases. That's something the president has wanted. They both leave it out. That makes it easier. But there's still some -- a lot of distance between them on how much to cut and how sure are they of getting real cuts. The Reid plan says, well, we're going to cut $2.2 trillion. And the Republicans come back and say, well, yes, $1.1 trillion of that or more are phantom savings from ending the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan we're going to end, anyway. Those are not real cuts.
And Boehner wants to come back with this other -- it's complicated. I don't know whether they can meld it or not. I'm still optimistic -- I'm still hopeful that we will get something. I think the stock market going down 200 points today, while bad news for 401(k) owners, I think really did send a powerful message to the Congress. You're really playing with fire here now. The markets are -- you thought Monday the markets were complacent. They're no longer complacent.
They're sending you a strong signal, buddy. Get your act together or you're going to have real trouble.
BORGER: They can try and play the blame game.
COOPER: Go ahead, Gloria.
BORGER: I was just going to say, they can try and play the blame game with each other, which I'm sure they will do. Because once you pass a bill in the House, the Republicans can say, look, we have done it. We have done our work. And once you pass a bill, a Democratic bill in the Senate, Democrats could say we have done our work.
But I think they're beyond that, Anderson. Because I think they will all suffer in the end if they don't get something done. The American public will say this is not what we voted you in for and so we're going to vote you out. And you could potentially see a huge anti-incumbent year.
GERGEN: Yes, I agree with that. But they are both playing for who's going to wind up getting the most blame, who's going to wind up holding the black queen?
BORGER: Right. That's the way they always play. But this is very high stakes.
COOPER: David, prominent Democrats, including former President Bill Clinton, say that President Obama should just raise the debt ceiling unilaterally, something they say the 14th Amendment allows. Do you see any truth to that?
GERGEN: Well, I think there's a very -- there's a strong argument for what Bill Clinton is arguing. But the administration has essentially ruled that out. Tim Geithner, the treasury secretary, has made it clear they do not think that's constitutional. They're not going to go down that path.
I think one of the reasons they're slamming that door shut, Anderson, is for the reason they want to keep pressure on to see if they can't get a deal. Look, I think the real -- the real (INAUDIBLE) is going to come here over the weekend and we're going to see where the parties really stand, what their bottom line cards are. We don't know that right now. We have got to get past the Reid-Boehner duel and then into the real negotiations and into the real deal.
COOPER: David, Gloria, thank you very much.
COOPER: Go ahead.
BORGER: I never thought I would wish for sort of deals to take place behind closed doors, but that's kind of what we're down to.
GERGEN: But there's sort of a point where a lot of people here would just sort of like to turn off the television cameras and shut these people up and let them go to work. And we don't want it hear any more of this. Just get the darn thing done.
COOPER: Well, it's going to be interesting the ramifications of this no matter what happens, how people continue to view Congress after this. Because I don't think anybody comes out of this looking very good.
COOPER: David, Gloria thank you very much.
Fascinating divisions right now in the GOP playing out today. Speaker Boehner's efforts to patch them up. We told you about the I guess salty language he was using today with his own members.
Well, Ari Fleischer and James Carville debate how deep they run. They did this right before we went on air. It gets pretty heated tonight. You're going to want to stick around for that.
Let us know what you think. We're on Facebook. You can follow me on Twitter @AndersonCooper. I'm trying to tweet tonight. I already sent out some tweets, but now I'm having problems with my Twitter, so I will try to send out some tweets ahead. But I will read yours.
Just ahead tonight, new video of the deadly blast in Norway as it happens. You will see what a security camera saw, and late details today as well on the investigation from our Nic Robertson, who's there, one girl's frantic text messages as she hid from the killer.
Also, polygamist leader Warren Jeffs on trial in Texas for two counts of sexual assault of a child. Tonight in our "Crime & Punishment" segment we take you inside a secretive FLDS community that one investigator compares to the Taliban. Imagine that right here in the United States.
First let's check in with our own Isha Sesay -- Isha.
ISHA SESAY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, game show host Alex Trebek isn't just on "Jeopardy." He's also talking about the terrifying moments when he was in jeopardy. We will tell you about his run-in with a burglar and what happened when he gave chase -- that and much more when 360 continues.
COOPER: Tonight's breaking news: details of House Speaker Boehner's revised debt reductions plan emerging tonight, also a letter from all 51 Democrats and two independents saying they will oppose it if it makes to their side of the Hill, a big if there.
As Gloria Borger and David Gergen mentioned earlier, there are signs tonight the chances may be improving somewhat, however. Certainly though there are also big signs that Speaker Boehner is facing a vocal rebellion among the GOP ranks, among Republican ranks. This morning on conservative talk radio he tried to rally the troops.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
LAURA INGRAHAM, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Is it true that you told some of the Republican members this morning that you need to get your A-word in line behind this debt ceiling bill?
REP. JOHN BOEHNER (R-OH), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: I sure did. Listen, this is time to do what is doable. And this bill isn't perfect.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What are we going to do?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, just moments after he spoke those words, some fellow Republicans and Tea Party leaders were rallying against his bill outside the Capitol.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JIM DEMINT (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: Folks, we have got to hold the line. We have got to stand strong. We can't let down the people who elected us last November.
SEN. RAND PAUL (R), KENTUCKY: We have the Boehner proposal on the table. It will cut next year $1 billion.
PAUL: We are spending $1 billion an hour virtually. That is insignificant and not meaningful reform.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Tea Party favorites Rand Paul and Jim DeMint.
Now, one of the rally organizers saying compromise simply is not the answer.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARK MECKLER, CO-FOUNDER, TEA PARTY PATRIOTS: We do think compromise is a bad word.
If you look at what's happened, compromise has brought us to $14.3 trillion in debt.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: But even the staunchly conservative "Wall Street Journal" editorial page disagrees, pushing today for the Boehner bill saying opposition to it -- quote -- "This is the kind of crack political thinking that turned Sharron Angle and Christine O'Donnell into GOP Senate nominees."
The editorial goes on: "The reality is that the debt limit will be raised one way or the another, and the only issue now is with how much fiscal reform and with what political fallout."
The GOP hard-liners though are sticking to an earlier House bill called Cut, Cap and Balance which doesn't raise the debt limit until Congress votes to send a balanced budget amendment to the states. Now, today on the Senate floor John McCain said enough is enough.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MCCAIN: That is not fair to the American people to hold out and say, we won't agree to raising the debt limit until we pass a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution. It's unfair. It's bizarro. And maybe some people who have only been in this body for six or seven months or so really believe that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Divisions within the GOP itself.
I spoke about that earlier with Democratic strategist James Carville and former Bush Press Secretary Ari Fleischer. Currently, you can follow him on Twitter, what is it, at Twitter.com/AriFleischer.
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) COOPER: So, James, it seems like some of the stiffest opposition to Boehner's bill at least to start with came from his own party. Is this kind of a rebellion in the ranks normal or are we seeing somewhat unusual here?
JAMES CARVILLE, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: You know, they told us exactly what they were going to do. Think of what you want of the Tea Party. I don't think very much of them. But they said that this is what they were going to do when they got here. And by and large, that's what they're doing.
I have a theory that the only thing more dangerous than someone that thinks about reelection all the time is someone who never thinks about reelection. And that seems to be what some of them are. But they're very true to what they said they were going to do.
COOPER: Well, Ari, what about that? The Tea Party members are really a minority bloc in one half of one branch of the government. But it seems like they're kind of steering the ship now. Is this how it's supposed to work?
ARI FLEISCHER, FORMER GEORGE W. BUSH WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Oh, it's about time that it worked this way. Members of the Tea Party came to Washington to educate Washington. They didn't come here so Washington could educate them on how things were going to get done.
And I talked to several members of Congress today, some senior members and couple freshman members, too. And you really get the sense the senior members welcome this infusion of how to cut spending, this pressure that they're under. They just want to make sure that it's done, done right, and that we don't put the nation into default.
So I think the speaker is finding that fine line between really changing Washington, but not pushing so far that things collapse. And that's what the Tea Party has really been helpful in accomplishing.
CARVILLE: Well, you know, that's strange, because the speaker said that the members of the Tea Party wanted to default, that they wanted the chaos. So maybe we're reading different newspapers here.
CARVILLE: I think there's a strong element...
FLEISCHER: We have been through this before.
CARVILLE: ... default. We have got to understand that, that there's a strong -- Senator DeMint want to default. Senator Toomey wants the result.
Many people on talk radio want to default. The speaker says members of his own caucus want to default. COOPER: Ari, I read a quote from someone today who said that there's not a speaker that we have seen in the last 30 years that has had to deal with the political climate that Boehner has had to deal with. Do you agree with?
FLEISCHER: Yes, I do. I think that's exactly right and I think that's on purpose.
What really is happening here, it's the same group of people who showed up in August of 2009 at the town halls were the first people to take on Barack Obama over health care. When many people thought Washington would have to go along with what President Obama was saying, these were the first people, the Paul Reveres of the Republican Party saying that we have got to stop this. Here is the warning.
And people underestimated them then. They thought they were fringe. And of course it led to the 2010 tidal wave election. What they believe in is still propelling the Republican Party on fiscal and economic issues today. And I welcome it.
CARVILLE: Yes. These are people that don't believe in evolution or global warming. So why are they going to believe that default would hurt anything? You're not dealing with like rational people here. Come on.
COOPER: James, do you believe that the GOP comes out of this looking better than the Democrats, I mean, purely from a political standpoint?
CARVILLE: Well, so far the answer is decidedly no. I think what they're going to do is tell the Senate -- I think what they are going to say is, we can't change a single thing. You pass in toto and then tell the president the same thing.
I think the Democrats ought to campaign against this. I think they ought to say that these people held a gun to the country's head, they were willing to do what was bad by America and send us into default. And I think we ought to take it to people and have an election about it.
But it's pretty clear that they're not going to have the -- if there's any changes to what they will pass in the House, it's pretty clear that they're not going to accept any changes in the Senate and they're not going to accept any input from the president. And I think that we're going to have to take this to an election if this is going to get this resolved in any way.
COOPER: Ari, you agree with...
FLEISCHER: Anderson, I think that if the Boehner plan fails in the House of Representatives tomorrow, it's going to be a political calamity for Republicans. If it passes in the House tomorrow, I think it's going to be a political calamity for the Democrats. Because at that point the Democrats are going to have to realize that only way the debt gets increased is with Democratic votes and for a plan that does nothing but cut spending and doesn't increase taxes.
That is going to make the liberal base of the Democratic Party become unglued. And I think the likelihood is Barack Obama will sign that. And that's why you hear panic in the voice of James and in other liberals that fear that Republicans are actually getting their way.
CARVILLE: I'm not panicked.
CARVILLE: I don't know how to tell you this, Air, but let me explain it to you.
This deficit was caused by irresponsible tax cuts tilted toward the wealthy, ill-thought-out and irresponsible wars, OK, and a deregulated, over-speculative financial sector.
Now you're coming back and wanting working people and students and retirees and veterans to pay for it. And Democrats don't think that's a good idea. And we're going to run on that. We're actually going to have an election on this. That's my general view. Sign it and then take it to the public and they will see what happens.
FLEISCHER: You know, James is pretending the Obama stimulus, which cost more than $800 billion and was supposed to keep unemployment below 8 percent never -- it never even took place.
FLEISCHER: He's forgetting all the spending that's taking place now that -- a budget -- the only people in town that have a piece of paper that cut spending are Harry Reid and John Boehner.
The piece of paper that Barack Obama submitted, his budget, increased spending and left us with trillion-dollar deficits as far as the eye can see. That's the Obama problem today.
CARVILLE: Let me explain to you...
CARVILLE: Let me explain to you so you just know, Ari. But you already know and you know that I know. And you know that I'm going to point out that every chart shows that 85 percent of this is a result of policies of the previous administration.
And the two biggest contributors to this are tax cuts and the wars that were started that are still going on. Plus you had the crash in the financial sector that caused all of this. Now you guys want people that have nothing to do with it to pay for it. And the Democrats are going to take that and they're going to run on it. Now, that's just what's going to happen. And you know the charts.
FLEISCHER: If the Democrats are so against those Bush tax cuts, then why did they extend them all for two years?
And what James is really saying is he wants to raise taxes on all Americans.
CARVILLE: You're right. I do, absolutely.
FLEISCHER: He wants to take away the marriage penalty that George Bush gave to all Americans, the child credit that George Bush gave to all Americans that Barack Obama extended to all Americans. James wants to raise taxes on all Americans regardless of income level.
CARVILLE: Let me be very clear.
FLEISCHER: That's the implications if you oppose the Bush tax cuts.
CARVILLE: Let me be very clear. I so oppose the Bush tax cuts. I particularly oppose them on people making over $250,000 a year.
I oppose the tax credits that they give to special interest groups, absolutely. And I think that they ought to pay for it. And I don't think that students, I don't think that veterans and I don't think retirees ought to pay for the mistakes that your administration made. I think the people that benefited by that ought to pay for it. That's exactly what I think. You don't have to say what I think. I'm glad to tell you about that.
CARVILLE: You didn't hear James address it all. I never heard him address why those tax cuts got extended for two years by a Democrat House and a Democrat Senate.
CARVILLE: That's what it is. So you know what I think. I don't think we ought to pay to clean up your mess.
COOPER: James Carville, Ari Fleischer, gentlemen, thank you.
COOPER: It got pretty heated.
Still ahead: New video of the deadly bombing in Norway shows just how powerful the blast was even a block away -- plus, the text messages that a teenager sent to her mom as a gunman killed her friends on that tiny island.
Also ahead, a deadly day in Syria, security forces killing at least eight people, including a young boy -- details on the murders coming up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: God bless the victims, their families, their friends, and the survivors. Peace be with them.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: That bell was given to Manhattan after the 9/11 attacks. It rang today a block from Ground Zero in memory of the 76 people killed in Norway's terror attacks last week.
Tonight, there's new video of the bombing in central Oslo. This store is a block away from where the bomb went off, but you can see the impact caught on a security camera. That's a full block away now. Imagine that. The blast was reportedly felt more than a mile away even.
We now know that bombing was just the beginning of the terror -- 68 people were later gunned down at a youth political camp on a small island outside Oslo. And when police today released the names of 13 more victims, the youngest was just 14 years old, a girl attending the camp.
Sixteen-year-old Julie Bremnes managed to hide from the gunman, who was -- who has allegedly confessed to both attacks, a guy named Anders Breivik. He stalked his victims for more than an hour before police arrived.
Now, the terror that Julie lived through is captured in text messages that she sent to her mother. Here's one of them. Julie writes, "Mummy, tell the police that they must be quick. People are dying here!"
Her mother replies, "I'm working on it, Julie. The police are on their way. Dare you call me?"
Julie tells her mom no.
Another text, Julie pleads with her mom, "Tell the police that there is a madman running around and shooting people. They must hurry." Julie adds, "We are in fear for our lives."
Her mother replies, "I understand that very well, my darling. Stay hidden. Do not move anywhere."
Julie also told her mom, "I love you even if I still misbehave from time to time." Julie's mom said that's when she knew the situation was really grave.
Police today detonated more explosives they found at a farm belonging to Breivik, who remains in isolation in a prison near Oslo. Now, earlier a few moments ago tonight I talked to senior international correspondent Nic Robertson.
VELEZ-MITCHELL: Nic, today on Breivik's farm more explosives were blown up. What do we know about that?
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, we know that some parts of them have been taken away for evidence. But there's some parts of those explosives that it seems to be residual parts from the fertilizer that he turned into a bomb for use here in the center of Oslo that the police say is just too unstable to transport away, so they're sticking a bit of TNT on it and then blowing it up in situ.
They pretty much finished that at the farm right now, so they've been through everything there. Bottom line is they need to find out, make sure that they can account for all the fertilizer that he bought, Anderson.
COOPER: We're also hearing the police were still searching the waters off the island.
ROBERTSON: Yes, there's still some people who are unaccounted for, missing, a small number. And the police continuing with that.
And again today they released names of some more of the victims. And I think what is just striking when you read through those names, as we did again today, just the ages. We're reminded again of the ages of some of the children. And some of them there -- two girls I saw one 14, one 15. These were the victims.
COOPER: I was surprised to learn that the maximum prison sentence in Norway is 21 years. But the prime minister spoke today. And he said that Breivik could be sentenced to longer than that. How so?
ROBERTSON: Well, I think the reason that he laid out today was, if he's still a danger to society here, then the law provides for extending that. Twenty-one years is the maximum people normally spend in jail. But if he is considered -- and it seems that the prime minister is willing to entertain the idea at this stage -- but if after the trial and 21 years later he's still considered a danger to society, then there would be ground for holding him. And that would just show how extreme his particular case is. And it is by any stretch totally extreme.
COOPER: And are the police still coming under a lot of criticism for how they handled this incident and their readiness? I understood, you know, that the police helicopter crew had all been excused on vacation so there was no way to get out there by helicopter. Where's the level of criticism at right now?
ROBERTSON: The questions are being raised. The helicopter crew, it took an hour and a half for the police to get out to the island. Questions raised why it took so long when media organizations had helicopters over the island and the police couldn't get there?
And then even when they got there their boats in some cases didn't work so they had to use public boats. So that's being raised.
The police today at a press conference, they were trying to sort of address, if you will, some of that criticism. The commander of the operation on the island to take Breivik into custody praised his officers.
But the prime minister today has said, "Look, there's going to be a commission, an independent investigation to look into the attacks to see what we can learn." And I think very clearly he is playing to that public perception that something needs to be done to make sure this doesn't happen again. That questions do need to be answered. He says the commission's going to answer directly to his office, Anderson.
COOPER: It's still also hard to believe. Nic Robertson, appreciate it. Thanks, Nic.
All right. Let's check in with Isha with a "360 Bulletin" -- Isha.
ISHA SESAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, Syria security force and army soldiers stormed a town outside Damascus early this morning, according to a human rights group. An 11-year-old boy was killed. So were at least seven others.
Outrage from Britain over this video shown on Libyan state television. It was taken at a pro-Gadhafi rally. The man in the wheelchair is Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi, convicted in the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland. He was released from a Scottish prison in 2009 on compassionate grounds when doctors said he didn't have long to live.
The British foreign secretary today called that medical advice, quote, "worthless" and al-Megrahi's release a great mistake.
The recently merged Continental and United Airlines had to cancel two dozen flights today because of so many pilots calling in sick. The mysterious epidemic comes as contract negotiations with the pilots' union drags on.
And Anderson, "Jeopardy" host Alex Trebek was hurt while chasing a burglar out of his San Francisco hotel room. He ruptured his Achilles tendon while trying to catch the culprit who stole cash, a bracelet and other items. Police arrested 56-year-old Lucinda Moyez, who's charged with burglary and receiving stolen property.
Anderson, do you know how old Alex Trebek is?
SESAY: Do you know how old he is?
COOPER: No. How old?
COOPER: That old?
COOPER: He looks great.
SESAY: Well, he's a crime-fighting dude.
COOPER: I can't say the Same for the mug shot of that woman.
SESAY: Looks like life's been a little hard.
COOPER: That was -- that's quite a mug shot.
SESAY: That's -- that's a keeper.
COOPER: She looks like a Chia -- like a Chia pet. That's weird.
SESAY: I'm going to leave on that.
COOPER: Yes, please do.
Time now for "The Shot." Tonight, Isha -- do they not have Chia pets in England?
COOPER: No. Funny enough we don't.
COOPER: All right. Here's "The Shot" tonight. Two adorable twins, the lords of the dance. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
(MUSIC: BLACK-EYED PEAS "HEY YA")
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Do you think these are real? I think this is some sort of weird computer animation or something.
COOPER: This doesn't seem real to me.
SESAY: I think...
COOPER: We found this on YouTube. We don't know who they are or where they live. But they love their Wii apparently.
SESAY: More apparently, can you...
COOPER: Do you buy that? Doesn't it look fake?
SESAY: Yes. It doesn't look right.
COOPER: I hadn't seen that until just now.
SESAY: Yes, I think -- but I still think it's pretty impressive. I'm more interested in whether you can dance.
COOPER: Well, you know, that's one of the age-old unresolved issues.
SESAY: No, it's either -- it's a yes or no answer. You either can or you can't.
COOPER: I can dance. I just don't need to do it on television.
COOPER: We'll talk more about that coming up.
And I want to apologize to our viewers for my voice tonight. I was on a lot of flights, and I think I caught bronchitis or something.
Anyway, a lot more to bring you tonight, serious stuff in "Crime & Punishment." Some drama today at the sexual assault trial of polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs. His lawyer -- his lawyers lose their battle to suppress evidence they don't want the jury to see. We'll have more on that just ahead
And also a key meeting between Dominic Strauss-Kahn's accuser that former hotel maid and New York prosecutors. The question is: will prosecutors press forward with the maid's case? Details ahead.
COOPER: Well, in "Crime & Punishment" tonight, a Texas judge dealt a blow to the defense today in the sexual assault trial of polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs. Now the judge refused to suppress evidence that police seized during that 2008 raid that you may remember on a Texas ranch that was run by Jeffs' church.
Now, Jeffs could suffer a similar setback tomorrow when his lawyers are expected to ask for another -- for other evidence to be suppressed from his arrest in 2006 in another state.
Also expected tomorrow, opening statements in the trial. He's pleaded not guilty to charges of bigamy and sexual assault of a child. A jury of ten women and two men will hear his case on the sexual assault charges. Jeffs is expected to be tried on the lesser bigamy charge in October.
His church, the fundamentalist sect -- Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, is known at FLDS. It's a far offshoot of the Mormon church and supports the practice of polygamy. But Mormons renounced polygamy more than a century ago, of course. That's when the FLDS broke away.
Today that renegade spirit has apparently taken a new turn. Some are saying that Jeffs' supporters in an Arizona town have been engaging in violent acts with no regard for the law. Gary Tuchman investigates.
SAM BROWER, PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR/WRITER: I've never seen it like this before. I've been here for seven years, and I've never seen things so unstable and so lawless. I consider this the most lawless town in the country.
GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Sam Brower is a private investigator and writer who's been following the polygamist sect closely for nearly a decade and who's written a book about the FLDS called "Prophet's Prey."
(on camera) Do you think there are comparisons to be made to, like, the Taliban or the mafia?
BROWER: Absolutely. I mean, even the Utah attorney general has stated that the FLDS in this community is run Taliban-style. And that's -- and that's really all the FLDS church is, in my opinion, is an organized crime family.
TUCHMAN (voice-over): Attorneys for the breakaway sect say that kind of assertion is nonsense, that the polygamist leaders and their followers who live here simply want to be left alone, to practice their religion as they see fit. But real violence, according to some neighbors, has crept into the community.
This burned-out patch of grass in the town of Colorado City, Arizona, is evidence of what authorities say is a very disturbing example. Arizona state investigators say FLDS leaders burned dozens of books here rather than let an open library be built. Why? Because they believe those books were collected by infidels.
STEPHAN COLGROVE, FORMER FLDS MEMBER: They burnt things that didn't belong to them. They broke and entered the building.
TUCHMAN: Former FLDS member Stephanie Colgrove says she worked more than two years to collect books for the new library, a library independent of the church.
(on camera) And what did they do with the books?
COLGROVE: They hauled them out of the building. TUCHMAN: Then what did they do with them?
COLGROVE: We assumed that they were burnt. We saw a massive bonfire and assumed all of this was on the pile because we saw books in the burning pile.
TUCHMAN: The library invaders certainly didn't worry about covering their tracks. This is the remnants of one of the charred books. Looks like a medical textbook.
(voice-over) County investigators say the local police in Colorado City are all members of the FLDS and have ignored the arson. Those local police have not returned our calls. It's the county authorities who have worked to crack down on the church.
(on camera) So you're with the county. And they're the local police. And normally 99.9 percent of the time, police all work together. You don't work with these guys, do you?
GARY ENGELS, MOJAVE COUNTY CHIEF INVESTIGATOR: Not at all. Can't even get them to talk to me most of the time.
TUCHMAN: That's because, according to Mojave County chief investigator Gary Engels, police here obey the religious leaders first, civilian leaders second.
(on camera) In your eyes is their allegiance more to the Constitution of the United States or to Warren Jeffs, their prophet?
ENGELS: I believe that their allegiance is probably more to the church. I know they were required to swear allegiance to one in one of their church meetings here not too long ago.
TUCHMAN (voice-over): When we asked local police for a comment, they did not respond.
COOPER: Gary, a lot of Warren Jeffs supporters, are they expected to attend his trial? Are they standing behind him?
TUCHMAN: We're only 45 minutes away from the compound that was raided in 2008 where more than 1,000 FLDS members now live. So we do expect tomorrow when opening statements take place in this courthouse they will be here. And they're very loyal.
Warren Jeffs acknowledges no one -- reporters, anyone else -- who are -- who's inside the courtroom for these hearings. But when his followers come in he smiles at them.
This is very interesting, Anderson. In a court when the jury walks in and walks out, everyone's supposed to stand, and they do. But you're not supposed to stand when a defendant comes into the court. But when Warren Jeffs walks into a courtroom, his supporters all rise in support of him.
COOPER: So is he still the leader of the FLDS sect?
TUCHMAN: He absolutely still is the leader. He's in his jail cell. He spends thousands of dollars a month on phone cards to call in his sermons to his followers every Sunday. Most of the 10,000 followers at the FLDS still believe he's the prophet, the closest person on earth to God.
COOPER: Wow. It's fascinating stuff. Gary, you've been covering it for a long time. Gary, appreciate the reporting tonight. Thanks.
A quick reminder: you can see Gary's special reports on Warren Jeffs this weekend, "CNN PRESENTS: POLYGAMIST DIRTY SECRETS" Sunday night at 8 p.m. Eastern right here on CNN.
Still ahead tonight, the hotel maid who accused Dominic Strauss- Kahn of rape meets with prosecutors. Will prosecutors bring this case forward? Details on that ahead.
Also ahead, why an ad campaign featuring Academy Award-winning actress Julia Roberts is being banned in the U.K. And why America's other sweetheart, tattoo artist turned reality TV star Kat Von Dee is on tonight's "RidicuList."
COOPER: Coming up, why tattoo artist Kat Von D has made her mark on the "RidicuList." But first, Isha Sesay is back with a "360 News & Business Bulletin" -- Isha.
SESAY: Anderson, we're keeping our eyes on Tropical Storm Dawn, which is moving quickly over the Gulf of Mexico and possibly heading toward Texas. The National Hurricane Center says Dawn is packing maximum sustained winds of up to 40 miles an hour. They say if the storm continues on its current path, it could hit the Texas coast late Friday into Saturday.
The hotel maid who accused Dominic Strauss-Kahn of sexual assault met prosecutors for at least seven hours today in New York. They're trying to determine if Nafissatou Diallo is out to get Strauss-Kahn's money. Lawyers for the former IMF chief say they're confident prosecutors will dismiss the case.
Investors ate up shares of Duncan Brands. The parent company of Dunkin Donuts and Baskin Robbins started trading on the NASDAQ today. Shares gained nearly 50 percent to close just under $28 a share.
And British authorities have banned a Lancome ad featuring Julia Roberts for being overly airbrushed. There you see the airbrushed Julia and there you see the more natural-looking Julia. "The Huffington Post" says a female member of British Parliament first raised concerns about the ad and how airbrushing is contributing to young women's problems with body image and confidence.
They're my people.
COOPER: So they outlawed the ad? For airbrushing?
SESAY: My people. What can I say? Yes. I'm going to leave it there.
COOPER: All right.
COOPER: I'll leave it there. Best to, I think.
Time for "The RidicuList." And tonight we're adding tattoo artist Kat Von D. Now, you may know her from they're her TLC reality series, "L.A. Ink," or from her engagement to that other pillar of reality show virtue, Jesse James, himself best known for cheating on Sandra Bullock and being photographed making a Nazi salute.
Well, Ms. Von D was scheduled to go on the Los Angeles morning show "Good Day L.A." today. And well, she -- she Kat Von Didn't.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Star of "L.A. Ink" Kat Von D is back with new shows on TLC. She just broke up with fiance Jesse James but not before getting a tattoo of his childhood picture.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KAT VON D, REALITY TV STAR: I'm really nervous about doing your surprise.
I started freaking out. Which takes a lot to freak me out.
You want to see it?
JESSE JAMES, EX-HUSBAND OF SANDRA BULLOCK: I feel like I'm in court.
VON D: Look. It's -- we're not finished with it yet.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Kat Von D just walked out of the building, and I'm sure it's because of the Jesse James stuff.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: OK. So let's break this down for a bit. First of all I'm not sure I'd ever even seen Kat Von D before. Is it just me or does she kind of look like a low-budget biker bar Cher impersonator? Second of all, did she really get a tattoo of Jesse James in her Kat Von armpit? Because the symbolism of that seems a little too perfect.
But by the way, before I get angry e-mails from the Kat Von fan club, you should know that, even though I'm taking the side of "Good Day L.A." on this one, I'm approaching the situation free of any bias. It's not like I was on their program yesterday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: How are you? UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Good. Good to see you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Good to see you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: OK. So I was on their program yesterday, promoting my new daytime talk show. Check your local listings. Thank you very much.
But Ms. Von D, if I may call you Ms. Von D, I did happen to read your Twitter feed, because I wanted to hear your side of this story. And I noticed one of your Kat Von tweets said, and I quote, "Dear Good Day L.A., thanks for the waste of a perfectly good morning. Lack of compassion and respect for each other never fails to disappoint me."
Now, you also say you didn't walk out because of the clip they played but because of what you say was a disrespectful introduction. Come on. We heard the introduction. You work in a tattoo parlor and you're on a reality TV show. If that's the most disrespectful thing you heard yesterday, you weren't reading your viewer comments.
I have to say, in their defense, the folks at "Good Day L.A.," Jillian, Jeff and Dorothy, are really quite nice. And keep in mind, I'm saying that despite my own brutal grilling from them yesterday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And I watch you do the news. And I think there's something about you that -- it's a soothing quality. You give me the information, and I really enjoy it.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Plus he's got those blue eyes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: OK. So it wasn't a brutal grilling at all.
I'm no expert, but I want to save Kat Von D further trouble. Here's how TV works. If you are very publicly engaged to a guy who's on your tattoo reality show, and you've talked about that guy, and then you go on TV to promote said tattoo reality show right after you announce your breakup to that guy, and your own network sends out a clip of your tattoo reality show that features you showing that guy you're engaged to the tattoo that you got of his face in your arm pit? I'm just going out on a limb here, but maybe you're going to get asked about that.
Now of course, maybe walking out on the fine folks at "Good Day L.A." was part of the publicity plan. By not appearing you get more coverage than by actually appearing. But that would be cynical. And I would hate to think about -- that someone on a reality TV show would be cynical. I honestly hope Ms. Von D's wounded heart heals. I really do. She seems like a nice person. For now, for walking out on what she must have known she was walking into, she gets a temporary tattoo on "The RidicuList."
We'll be right back.
COOPER: Good evening, everyone. Breaking news tonight. Somewhere in that building Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says lawmaking magic can happen. And House Speaker John Boehner is hoping that members of his own party will, and these are his words, get their asses in line and support his debt reduction bill.
They'll need some of that magic and some of those body parts in line to find a way out of the debt crisis before Tuesday's deadline.
The breaking news tonight, House members will vote on Boehner's bill tomorrow. New details are emerging about it tonight, though. The Congressional Budget Office is weighing in. But 53 senators are now on record, on paper, opposing it.
Kate Bolduan is working the story. She joins us in a moment with some late details.
Also tonight Ari Fleischer, James Carville on the Republican challenge to the Republican speaker's bill. They get into a heated exchange in a moment. Some of the members today in open rebellion. John McCain today smacking them down, fellow Republicans. He's providing a reality check, and so are the financial markets.