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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Herman Cain Under Fire; Michael Jackson Death Trial Continues; Remembering Steve Jobs
Aired October 6, 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: It is 10:00 p.m. here on the East Coast.
Good evening, everyone. We begin "Keeping Them Honest" with the words of Herman Cain. Some are contradicted by fact. Some seem, well, barely tethered to reality. Others, though, they are matters of opinion, not fact, but have stirred up such controversy they become news.
In any case, we are taking a closer look tonight because Republican voters have made him a leading contender for the presidential nomination. Last weekend, he won Florida's GOP straw vote. In the latest CBS News poll, he's tied with Mitt Romney for the lead among Republicans, a 12-point surge in just two weeks, not perhaps the makings of our next president or even likely the nominee, but it's a sign that Herman Cain is no longer a voice on the fringe.
Tonight, we're taking what he says seriously beginning with statements he has made about Sharia or Islamic law in America.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HERMAN CAIN (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: There is this creeping attempt, there is this attempt to gradually ease Sharia law and the Muslim faith into our government. It does not belong in our government.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Now, Herman Cain back in March responding to a question about whether he'd appoint a Muslim to his Cabinet or to the federal bench. The answer, he said, was, no. He subsequently walked that back saying he's open to appointing anyone as long as they pledged their loyalty to America, which in fact appointees already do.
As for facts to back up his larger claim about Sharia law, in a presidential debate in June, he said that Sharia law has influenced court decisions in Oklahoma and New Jersey. In New Jersey, there was one incident in 2009, one single incident, a domestic violence case. A judge refused to grant a Muslim woman a restraining order because of her husband's Muslim beliefs. That decision was overturned on appeal. That's it.
Voters in Oklahoma did ban judges from relying on Sharia law when deciding cases, but that was a preemptive move. It wasn't based on a judge actually doing that or Muslims in Oklahoma actually attempting to institute Sharia law. On top of that, the Constitution bars any religious test for office and the First Amendment bars any mixing of church and state or mosque and state.
Chris Christie, New Jersey's Republican and former U.S. attorney, had a simple answer to the Sharia law question when he was dealing with it this summer.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), NEW JERSEY: This Sharia law business is crap. It's just crazy. And I'm tired of dealing with the crazies.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Chris Christie in July, the governor of New Jersey. Herman Cain though was not swayed. Here he is just this weekend.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CAIN: Call me crazy, but there are too many examples of where there has been pushback.
CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, HOST, "THIS WEEK WITH CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR": You don't really mean this, though, do you, Mr. Cain?
CAIN: Oh, yes, I do.
AMANPOUR: Sharia law in the United States?
CAIN: Some people would infuse Sharia law in our court system if we allow it. I honestly believe that. So even if he calls me crazy, I am going to make sure that they don't infuse it little by little by little. It's not going to be some grand scheme, little by little. I don't mind if he calls me crazy. I'm simply saying...
AMANPOUR: You're sticking to it.
CAIN: I'm sticking to it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, "Keeping Them Honest" though the facts simply don't support his notion that there's a threat or some sort of movement toward this. Cain is also on record criticizing Planned Parenthood, which is not unusual among social conservatives who object to its support for abortion rights.
What is noteworthy though is what Cain has said he considers -- quote -- "a plausible theory" of genocidal motives for their pro- choice position. Back in 2004, he was running for Senate in Georgia. "The Washington Post" sent a reporter to cover a campaign appearance at which he told supporters that Planned Parenthood was established to systematically lower the black population -- quote -- "One of the motivations was killing black babies."
As for why, "The Post" reports he said -- quote -- "Because they didn't want to deal with the problems of illiteracy and poverty."
Census figures do show that African-American women have abortions at a much higher rate than whites or Latinos. But as for what motivates Planned Parenthood either now or when the organization began back in the early 20th century, we couldn't find any facts to back up Cain's allegation and Cain hasn't offered any either.
But he did tell The Heritage Foundation this about Planned Parenthood's founder -- quote -- "When Margaret Sanger, check my history, started Planned Parenthood, the objective was to put these centers in primarily black communities so they could help kill black babies before they came into the world."
The nonpartisan organization PolitiFact did check Cain's history. They found no evidence that Margaret Sanger had any such motives and they spoke to her leading biographer and leading historians of the time. PolitiFact's conclusion -- quote -- "Cain's claim is a ridiculous, cynical play of the race card. We rate it pants on fire."
But by his own admission, not having the facts doesn't always stop Herman Cain from saying what's on his mind. Here he is just the other day talking to "The Wall Street Journal" about the protesters in Lower Manhattan and the unemployment crisis.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CAIN: I don't have facts to back this up, but I happen to believe that these demonstrations are planned and orchestrated to distract from the failed policies of the Obama administration. Don't blame Wall Street. Don't blame the big banks. If you don't have a job and you're not rich, blame yourself.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: We invited Herman Cain on the program. But his staff told us the candidate is busy all week. The invitation stands.
Ed Rollins, well, he can't say no. He's former campaign manager for Michele Bachmann. Also CNN contributor and Tea Party Dana Loesch is also with us and chief political analyst Gloria Borger.
Gloria, what does Cain have you think that Romney doesn't?
GLORIA BORGER, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, he's got enthusiastic supporters. More than half of his supporters say they're -- strongly support him and Romney only has about a quarter strong supporters.
So when you have that kind of enthusiasm behind you, it's important. Romney supporters are sort of comfortable with hi. But they are not wildly mad about him.
Now, the good news for Romney though, is that these tea party voters are very fickle. You know, they moved to, now they're with Cain. They were with Perry. They were with Michele Bachmann. So, they keep moving around because they looking for the perfect candidate, which, by the way, they are probably not going to find.
COOPER: Dana Loesch, is that true that tea party voters are pickle or that they are still kind not settled on somebody?
DANA LOESCH, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: I don't think that they are settled on anyone yet. It's still a little bit early in the game and I want to see if some of these other candidates and I would assume that a bunch of other tee party activists do as well. Once I see that some of these candidates can step up there, gain a little bit.
We still have a long way to go but I think that everyone still just kind of vetting these candidates. They are looking to see where they stand on the issue and also how they hold up during national debates. I think that's what the thing that cost Perry his immediate lead, was he didn't have a good couple of debates and that kind a cost him a little bit. So, I don't know if there's so much they are fickle as they're still vetting at this point I think.
COOPER: Can Herman Cain stand the vetting? I mean, as he now is much higher in the polls, he's going to get a lot more attention, Ed.
ED ROLLINS, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: Not if he says things like he said here on camera. I mean the bottom line is, he now has the attention of the American public and Republican voters and they are going to pay close attention. And just as Gloria said, there is a shift. Michele Bachmann became kind a front-runner for a while and said some things that split her back. He became a front-runner early in the debates.
He made some mistakes in the same kind of issues here. He slid back. Perry obviously said three bad debates. My sense at this point in time is this is a time that you can be fickle. This is - you can like people but you're not going to vote for them. And I think at the end of the day, the tea party element which is very strong in our party is not yet settled.
COOPER: It seems, you know, Ed, I mean, Mitt Romney has put on the front-runner but he is not breaking away from the PAC.
ROLLINS: He's never been above 30 percent. He's just been a solid - and I have had pollsters tell me before this campaign has started that he would never get above 30 percent. Now, 30 percent at the end of the day when to three all divided up, the key thing in three months we started going after states and delegates and my senses is very strong candidate in New Hampshire, he'll a strong candidate in Nevada. Perry, Bachmann, Cain, others will be strong in Iowa and South Carolina depending on who wins there, Florida may be the ultimate decider. All of those five states will be January.
COOPER: Gloria, is there anything that Romney can do that he already hasn't done? They have been running for so long. Does he keep being the guy that he is now?
BORGER: Well, he can't be the guy that he was the last time around. Because the guy he was the last time around was the candidate people thought was inauthentic, who was a flip-flopper, kept changing positions to please different constituents in the party. When you talk to advisers in his campaign, they say, we are not going to be that guy. We have defended what Romney did on health care in Massachusetts for example. We didn't back off of it. We're looking towards the future to say it's not right for the nation as a whole but it was right for Massachusetts at that time.
The big thing they are going to do and have to continue to do is to make him look like the most plausible candidate to become president of the United States that the Republican Party can feel. That's different from saying is he electable, because when you proclaim that you're electable to conservatives, it means that you're really moderate trying to be conservative. So what he has to do is say, I'm the only plausible president standing here with these other candidates.
COOPER: Dana, what do you think Romney's biggest weakness is, from your vantage point?
LOESCH: Mitt Romney. I think his biggest weakness this is on record, I think is himself. When he was governor of Massachusetts, he was supported the state was 47th in terms of job creation.
I don't get where this big job creation record comes from Mitt Romney and I cannot fathom the idea of any true conservative or Republican, for that matter, who spent the last 2 1/2 years criticizing President Obama's health care law, suddenly throwing their support towards the governor who helped bring in the blueprint for that. It seems a complete betrayal of everything that everyone's been standing for the past several years.
So, Mitt Romney, the number one threat to Mitt Romney is himself. The second threat I think at some point could be Rick Perry. I don't know whether or not Herman Cain can go a full on primary battle against Mitt Romney especially in terms of fund raising but, he definitely has a lot of support against him right now.
BORGER: He doesn't have a staff.
COOPER: Gloria said he doesn't have staff.
LOESCH: He doesn't have staff, yes.
ROLLINS: The two campaigns are organized. And Perry is getting organized, Perry and Romney. They are the ones that you know as I said, January maybe in December, we have our candidate said we don't have our calendar set. You could have literally have, the Iowa caucus the day after Christmas this year.
But the bottom line is, by the end of January, the battle is going to be down to two people that are serious and unless someone breaks through in Iowa, it's probably Perry and Romney and they will go for the long run.
BORGER: And with regards to fund-raising, Perry, Perry just came in - he bit Mitt Romney this last quarter, just like three or four million dollars in fund raising. ROLLINS: Cain doesn't have any kind of apparatus. The bottom line is they both -- both Romney and Perry have gotten easy money. The money from here on gets harder and they have way money than anybody else. But from here on, it's going to take you 40, $50 million to get through this process.
COOPER: Wow. That's incredible.
BORGER: And then the question for tea party supporters is going to be, are they still going to be looking for Mister Perfect or Miss Perfect? Or, are they going to rally behind somebody they believe is that plausible president who can go toe to toe against Barack Obama.
COOPER: Ed Rollins, Dana Loesch, Gloria Borger, appreciate it. We'll going to leave it there.
One on a political note, we'll have a chance to talk to Herman Cain and all of the candidates a couple of weeks from now in Las Vegas. I will be hosting the western Republican debate on the 18th, 8:00 p.m. Eastern time, right here on CNN from Vegas.
Let us know what you think. Follow us on Facebook. Follow me on Twitter @AndersonCooper. I will be tweeting tonight.
Up next, the airport they want to build on an island in the middle of nowhere. It looks like they will benefit at the company but almost nobody else. The company is paying for just a fraction of it. Guess who is paying for almost all of it? You are. Everyone, from the president on down, from his no more pork like this, tonight we're "Keeping Them Honest."
And later, the Michael Jackson death trial, a good day for defendant Conrad Murray. We are going to tell you how defense attorneys manage to re-doubt about the prosecutions' case. Former Jackson lawyer joins us.
First, let's also check in with Isha.
ISHA SESAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, Steve Jobs left behind two families. The one most people know about and the other that many people don't. Tonight, we'll tell you about the daughter whose name was on early apple, the sister, a famous novelist that he only discovered later in life and the birth father that he ignored for years. That and more when 360 continue.
COOPER: "Keeping Them Honest," about where your tax at, this is a fascinating report. Lawmakers in both parties are talking about national sacrifice, about deep cuts and defense, entitlements, now there's spending that touches tens and millions of Americans.
They are also still pushing money out the door for appears to be the benefit of very, very few, or in the case if the story that we uncovered, the parent benefit of a single well-connected company. Call it corporate welfare. Call it pork barrel Politics. Call your earmark's gone wild, whatever you want. President Obama, just a few weeks ago said, enough is enough.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: No more earmarks, no more boondoggles, no more bridges to nowhere.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: That was the president address to Congress last month. No more bridges to nowhere. Democrats and Republicans have been saying the same now for years.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. JOHN BOEHNER (R-OH), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: The American people see this earmark process as an example of a broken Washington.
SEN. JIM DEMINT (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: Our debt is unsustainable.
REP. ERIC CANTOR (R-VA), HOUSE MAJORITY LEADER: On the earmark process
REP. MIKE PENCE (R), INDIANA: After the corn husker kickback
DEMINT: Is driven by earmarks.
SEN. CLAIRE MCCASKILL (D), MISSOURI: It quacks like a duck, it's a duck. It's an earmark.
PENCE: Earmarks have become emblematic of everything that's wrong.
SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R), FLORIDA: We can't deal with the issues of earmarks.
REP. STEVE ISRAEL (D), NEW YORK: Keep spending on the bridge to nowhere.
SEN. JOHN CORNYN (R), TEXAS: I intend to vote against those earmarks.
ISRAEL: But when it comes to our friends in special interest, spend, spend, and spend.
COOPER: Democrats and Republicans rallying against earmarks, pork, and pet projects like the bridge in nowhere in Alaska. You would think with all the talk about the budget cutting, there wouldn't be pork left. But "Keeping Them Honest," you've been mistaken. We found a project it's out on the tip of Alaska. You've been paying for it since the Bush administration. The Obama administration kept it going. Both Republicans and Democratic lawmakers voted to fund it, even though critics are calling it a multi-million dollar airport to nowhere.
Gary Tuchman went there.
GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Calling this place remote would be an understatement. Thousands of acres of Alaskan wilderness, an uninhabited island, but you, the American taxpayer, are kicking in almost $60 million to build an airport here. That's right, your money for an airport on a deserted island.
JOE BERESKIN, MAYOR OF AKUTAN, ALASKA: The airport is slated to be done in August of 2012.
TUCHMAN: Joe Bereskin is the mayor of Akutan, Alaska which is on another island six miles away. The airport is being built for his town which has 100 residents. So, you might wonder as we did, why the 100 citizens of mountainous Akutan need an airport that pricing out at about $77 million, most of it paid by you?
BERESKIN: We have over 1,000 people that we need to serve.
TUCHMAN: Indeed, in addition to his 100 residents, there are about 1100 other people who either come by boat or occasional seaplane to work in Akutan. At the largest sea who process plants in U.S. of the Trident Seafood company. Everyone agrees tried it would be the primary user of the airport. And the company's getting a pretty good deal for us, of the $77 million that the airport is expected to cost, Trident will pay $1 million.
Steve Ellis is with Taxpayers For Common Sense.
STEVE ELLIS, TAXPAYERS FOR COMMON SENSE: We are looking at a waste of money here. And this is something where you have a private company that is standing to get a driveway built for them by the taxpayer. And so this is an outrageous use of taxpayers' funds.
TUCHMAN: Trident's plant manager is David Abbasian.
(on camera): Driveway to Trident is an airport. What's your response to that?
DAVID ABBASIAN, PLANT MANAGER, TRIDENT SEAFOOD: To our naked eye, you can't argue that.
TUCHMAN (voice-over): But Trident says that they have built their own infrastructure on this island. Improve the lives of the native population and sees no reason to pay more than $1 million.
ABBASIAN: This is not something that is being handed to us. It is something that we've earned through all of the contribution that we've made towards the tax dollars. We have paid millions, millions in tax dollars.
TUCHMAN: Many of the families who have been here for generations agree, saying that the plant has improved opportunities. And the small post office, a poster worker says he doesn't feel badly about U.S. tax workers footing most of the bill. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We all pay taxes just like everybody else does.
BERESKIN: Trident changed the lifestyle in Akutan.
TUCHMAN: And as we continued to talk to the mayor, the conversation struck a nerve.
If Trident wasn't here, would you need the airport for 100 people?
BERESKIN: No. It doesn't make sense. No.
TUCHMAN: So you acknowledged Trident needed it far more than your people need it?
BERESKIN: We are a community, Gary. You need to look, open your eyes and see Akutan as community. If you keep insisting camera on, if you keep insisting on that, I'm going to have to keep talking to you, Gary.
TUCHMAN: But it's not only the airport funding that is getting negative attention.
(on camera): It's still not clear how the passengers would get there. The original plan was a hovercraft at the cost $13 million. But in other parts of Alaska, it doesn't always work.
Then there's the thought of a helicopter. That's also very expensive or a boat like this one. But it takes between 20 and 40 minutes to get there, and it's cold and uncomfortable. So, even when the airport is about to open, we don't know how people will get there.
(voice-over): It took us more than two days to get there for the story.
(on camera): Much of the time here, perhaps more than half the time, the waves are too high, winds too severe to get a boat close to the island where the airport is. Today is one of those days.
(voice-over): So we waited for the next day. The winds diminished, the skies cleared. We took a cargo boat and then skip. But there was a 90-foot muddy cliff between us and the construction site. We had to scale it to see how much progress is being made. Even the Trident bosses have not yet been to the site.
About 25 construction workers are living on the island for up to two months at a time. Gravel is just started to be laid down at the runway. The airport project is on schedule. This is your airport, American taxpayer. Even though seeing it on TV is probably the closest that you will ever get to it.
COOPER: Well, Gary, wouldn't it have been easier or cheaper to build it on the island instead of six miles away. TUCHMAN: Well, that's right. Akutan is a beautiful place, Anderson, but the problem is, it's basically a volcanic rock plopped in the barring sea in the Pacific Ocean. So, 99 percent of it is mountainous. The only flat area is where the people live in their houses and with the seafood process in company, there's no room for an airport. So they put it on a neighboring island which is pretty flat but ironically, no one lives on that flat island.
COOPER: I want to bring in Steve Ellis, the vice president of taxpayers for common sense. Mister Ellis, Trident Seafoods says they put a lot of money in the economy and that they basically deserved this airport largely on the taxpayers' dime. You disagree with that. Why?
ELLIS: Well, clearly they are the major beneficiary. I mean they do contribute in the economy. They bring a 1,000 people or more to that island every year for seasonal work, but are only kicking in $1 million and this airport is really little more than a driveway for Trident Seafoods.
COOPER: Gary, why can't they just keep flying seaplanes like they are doing now?
TUCHMAN: Right. The seaplanes unfortunately are like 50 or 60 years old. They don't make them anymore. It's hard to find the parts. And they have to have a good weather. Like right now, they can't fly on a day like there is today, where it's raining and it's windy. So they don't fly very infrequently. But you can still get there but it's a long boat ride from the nearest airport to the island right now, it's a four and a half hour ride. So it can be done but it's very inconvenient.
COOPER: Steve, Alaska you know is a pretty unique state in terms of transportation challenges, there are significant challenges in certain places I mean isn't that just because the part of doing business in Alaska, this is what they required?
ELLIS: Well Anderson, it's evidently not the cost of doing business for Trident Seafoods. It's the cost to the taxpayers. And there is no doubt that Alaska is a unique state and that there is a lot of need for air transportation because you can't get from place A to place B by road.
But that said we still have to look at priorities and what makes the most sense because there's a lot of this type of situation around Alaska. And in this case it's really about benefiting this one business. It's a big business that should be able to pick up part of the tab or a greater share of the tab.
COOPER: Greater share.
Steve Ellis, appreciate it.
Gary Tuchman as well, thanks.
ELLIS: Thank you. COOPER: Well, coming up, as tributes pour in following the death Steve jobs, we are going to taking a closer look at something you may not know about him, his birth, the remarkable story of his adoption, his biological parents, and the sister he met when they were both adults. That's next.
And later, and investigator in the Michael Jackson case on the stand in the trial of Dr. Conrad Murray, the defense grilling her about the work that she did at the scene of Jackson's death.
We will have that coming up.
COOPER: "Up Close" tonight: tributes around the world honoring iconic Apple co-founder Steve Jobs who died yesterday at the age of 56. From New York to Paris to Hong Kong, makeshift shrines of flowers, apples, candles and thank you notes flags at Apples stores flying at half mass. No word yet on whether there will be a public memorial service for Jobs but his family says that a Web site will be created for people who want to offer their tribute and memories.
At the end in Steve Jobs' life, an out-pouring affection and admiration, but tonight, we take a closer look at the beginning of his life. It's a story just as remarkable as the legacy he goes on to built.
COOPER (voice-over): As most people know, Steve Jobs' life was one of bravo and brilliance, of innovation and creation. But how he got there is a little told story. Only on rare occasions did he speak about it at all.
STEVE JOBS, APPLE CO-FOUNDER: My biological mother was a young unwed graduate student. And she decided to put me up for adoption.
COOPER: Her name is Joanne Schieble. In 1954, she met and fell in love with this man, Abdulfattah "John" Jandali, an immigrant from Homs, Syria.
Jandali who at that time was also studying at the University of Wisconsin and recently told "The New York Post": "I was very much in love with Joanne but sadly her father was a tyrant and forbade her to marry me as I was from Syria. And so, she told me she wanted to give the baby up for adoption."
Joanne took off on her own and went to San Francisco, where she gave birth.
JOBS: So everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife, except that, when I popped out, they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl.
So, my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: "We've got an unexpected baby boy. Do you want him?"
They said, "Of course."
COOPER: His adoptive father, Paul Jobs was a machinist. He and his wife, Clara, raised Steve in the modest middle class home in Los Altos, California, which also became the launched pad for his technological empire.
JOBS: I was lucky. I found what I love to do early in life. Woz and I started Apple in my parents' garage when I was 20.
COOPER: Three years later, Jobs himself would have a child out of wedlock, a young girl name Lisa, the same name given to one of the earliest computers sold by Apple.
Lisa Brennan-Jobs is now an accomplished writer and in February 2008 wrote in "Vogue" magazine what it was like growing up as Jobs' daughter.
"In California, my mother raised me mostly alone," she wrote. "We didn't have many things, but she is warm and we were happy. My father was rich and renowned and later, as I got to know him, went on vacations with him, and then lived with him for a few years, I saw another, more glamorous world."
As for Jobs' biological parents, they did eventually get married, even had another child, the novelist, Mona Simpson. Jobs met his sister when they were both adults, and the two became very close. Some have even speculated that her 1996 book, "A Regular Guy," is actually about Jobs. But he never developed a relationship with his biological father.
Jandali says he sent e-mails to Jobs on his birthday but never called him, because he didn't want his son to think he was after his fortune.
Just six weeks ago, Jandali told the "New York Post," "Now I just live in hope that, before it's too late, he will reach out to me, because even to have just one coffee with him just once would make me a very happy man."
We don't know if Jobs ever had that coffee with his biological father. But we do know that throughout his life, Jobs was philosophical about his relationships and about life.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
STEVE JOBS, APPLE FOUNDER: You can't connect the dots looking forward. You can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future, because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart, even when it leads you off the well- worn path.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: What a remarkable man.
We're following several other stories tonight. Isha Sesay joins us with a "360 News & Business Bulletin" -- Isha.
ISHA SESAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, the Occupy Wall Street protests enter their 20th day today. The protests are also popping up in other U.S. cities. The president today said the demonstrations are indicative of the frustration that Americans feel about the financial system.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I think it expresses the frustrations that the American people feel that we had the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression, huge collateral damage all throughout the country, all across Main Street, and yet you're still seeing some of the same folks who acted irresponsibly trying to fight efforts to crack down on abusive practices that got us into this problem in the first place.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SESAY: Well, President Obama also spoke about the jobs bill today, sending a tough message to Republicans. The president said any senator who's thinking about voting against his jobs bill needs to explain why. The $447 billion bill is due for a vote in the Senate next week.
Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was out in Washington this afternoon at a ceremony honoring her husband, Mark Kelly's, retirement from the Navy. Giffords has been in Houston recovering from being shot in January in Tucson.
And a 360 follow now. A few producers of "The Simpsons" reportedly say they're willing to take pay cuts to try to keep the show on the air. The main dispute between the studio and the voice actors continues. The studio wants them to take a 45 percent pay cut and rejected their offer to take a 30 percent cut instead.
Anderson, maybe, just maybe you won't be crying into your pillow after all.
SESAY: Oh, donuts!
COOPER: Was that your -- yes, OK.
COOPER: Was -- was "The Simpsons" popular in Britain?
SESAY: Actually, it was. It was very, very -- you seem surprised.
COOPER: Did you call it "The Sime-sons" or something? SESAY: No. It was still Homer, Lisa, Bart and Maggie.
COOPER: All right. Well, good to know.
Time for "The Shot." You probably heard the expression "It's not the size of the dog in the fight; it's the size of the fight in the dog." Actually, a Chihuahua named Dude has heard it, too. Take a look. We found this on YouTube.
I keep being afraid he's going to just eat that whole thing.
COOPER: The big dog's name is Maggie. She's an English Mastiff. The video was shot a couple of years ago when Dude was just a puppy, a new edition. Maggie was top dog until Dude came along. Apparently, they get along pretty well.
SESAY: My feeling is the whole time Maggie is thinking, "To eat or not to eat, that is the question."
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Maggie, down.
COOPER: I think finally Maggie is like, "Enough, I'm going to get up." Yes.
COOPER: Still ahead, serious stuff, "Crime & Punishment," the latest in the trial of the death of Michael Jackson, the defense accusing an investigator of shoddy work. Did they make a dent, though, in the prosecution's case?
Plus, the judge who overturned Amanda Knox's conviction and set her free is speaking out. Wait until you hear what he is saying tonight.
COOPER: "Crime & Punishment," on day eight of the Michael Jackson death trial, the defense came out swinging. Their target: this woman, Elissa Fleak, an investigator who searched the singer's bedroom shortly after he died.
Her testimony is key to the prosecution's case. They say that Dr. Conrad Murray gave Jackson the dose of Propofol that killed him. In building their case in court through autopsy and toxicology reports. Now, today, a toxicologist testified about the type and levels of drug, including Propofol, found in Jackson's body. The prosecution is also relying on crucial evidence found in Jackson's bedroom. And that's what made Elissa Fleak a target today.
Here's Randi Kaye.
(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In the hours after Michael Jackson died, investigators scoured the bedroom of his rented mansion for clues to what killed him. Elissa Fleak, an investigator with the Los Angeles County Coroner's Office, found 12 bottles of the powerful anesthetic Propofol in Jackson's bedroom. She told the jury yesterday, one of them was empty.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you locate on the floor a 20-milliliter bottle of Propofol?
ELISSA FLEAK, INVESTIGATOR, LOS ANGELES COUNTY CORONER'S OFFICE: Yes, I did.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And where was that located?
FLEAK: On the floor next to the left side of the bed.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And was it empty but for some drops of fluid as it is here today?
KAYE: The coroner says Jackson died of acute Propofol intoxication. His doctor, Conrad Murray, denies charges of manslaughter. In court, the jury learned Murray's fingerprint was found on the 100-milliliter bottle of Propofol that prosecutors say led to Jackson's death.
The bedroom looked more like a pharmacy. These are all the medications Fleak says she discovered. She also said she found a syringe, an I.V. stand and an I.V. bag with Propofol in it.
On cross today, the defense tried to make her investigation look sloppy saying she didn't report Propofol was inside the I.V. bag in her report until nearly two years after Jackson's death.
ED CHERNOFF, MURRAY'S ATTORNEY: In fact, the very first time that you noted that there was a Propofol bottle in an I.V. bag was the 29th of March, 2011.
FLEAK: In case notes.
CHERNOFF: Isn't that right?
KAYE: The prosecution's case hinges on the fact that Propofol was inside the I.V. bag, which would mean Jackson could not have taken the fatal dose himself, as the defense suggests.
The defense pressed on, attempting to show Fleak made more mistakes, touching a syringe she'd found in the bedroom without wearing gloves.
CHERNOFF: This syringe has your fingerprint on it. Right?
FLEAK: Yes, it does.
KAYE: Investigator Fleak also took heat for not mentioning the I.V. bag in her original reports.
CHERNOFF: Would you consider that a mistake, Ms. Fleak, on your part?
FLEAK: I described something in detail later on. I didn't include it in the general initial narrative. Is it a mistake? I could have described more in detail.
CHERNOFF: You could have described it at all, right?
FLEAK: In the initial report, yes.
KAYE (on camera): On the stand Wednesday, a computer forensics examiner who analyzed Conrad Murray's iPhone. On it, a recording from May 10, 2009, of Michael Jackson sounding wasted and slurring his words. In a portion never before played in court, Jackson was speaking of his love for children and his own unhappy childhood.
JACKSON: I love them. I love them because I didn't have a childhood. I had no childhood. I feel their pain; I feel their hurt.
KAYE: Then suddenly, silence, and Dr. Murray's voice.
MURRAY: You OK?
JACKSON: I am asleep.
KAYE: Sleep. Michael Jackson wanted it so badly it killed him.
Randi Kaye, CNN, Los Angeles.
COOPER: So disturbing to hear those phone calls.
Digging deeper now, did the defense score points today? Joining me now is criminal defense attorney Tom Mesereau, who was Michael Jackson's former attorney.
Tom, thanks for being with us. The defense cross-examined the coroner's investigator, tried to prove that she made a number of mistakes during her investigation in Jackson's room. Do you think their argument was effective?
TOM MESEREAU, MICHAEL JACKSON'S FORMER ATTORNEY: I thought he did a very good job. He was very prepared. He left no stone unturned. He didn't bully the witness, but he was firm in his cross. I thought he did an excellent job. You know, no investigation is ever perfect and no investigator is ever perfect. The question is, would some of these imperfections or mistakes, whatever you want to call them, or inconsistencies rise to a significant level? Now, they may or they may not. It depends on how they play into other evidence that comes up later in the trial. Right now, I didn't hear anything that was fatal. But you don't know how it's going to connect with other things later on.
COOPER: The investor was basically saying, "Well, look, I didn't include this -- mention the I.V. bag in the initial report, but in a more detailed report later on, I did."
MESEREAU: That's right. And of course, he's suggesting it's suspicious that you were influenced by prosecutors, you were influenced by witnesses, that kind of thing. That's where he was coming from, in my opinion.
COOPER: One thing that we've been waiting to hear is this two- hour interview that Dr. Murray gave to police two days after Jackson's death. How significant do you think that piece of evidence is going to be?
MESEREAU: Well, I'm very surprised, as a criminal defense lawyer, that his lawyers allowed him to go down to the police station two days after Michael's death and give a detailed statement. At that point, they had no idea where this investigation was going. They had no idea what evidence was being -- was surfacing and how it could be interpreted. And to let him go down there and lock himself into very precise statements, particularly with respect of the time line, I think may prove to be a mistake. But we have to see exactly what he said.
COOPER: So your advice to a client in this situation is never to talk to the police or at least know what the police want to talk to you about?
MESEREAU: My advice to the client would be not to talk to the police and to blame it on me. The reason would be, "My attorney has instructed me not to speak." That never comes into a trial. It's a constitutional right that everyone has. And that would have been the better way to go, I believe. But, you know, we'll never know until this trial ends. If it's an acquittal, the lawyer will look like a genius. So I just think it was a mistake from everything I know.
COOPER: The toxicologist who studied the drugs that were in Jackson's body also testified today. Is this the key scientific evidence the prosecution needs for their case?
MESEREAU: Well, it's certainly very key evidence. I mean, no one's disputing that Michael was having Propofol put into his system in his home, under conditions that were less than desirable. No one is disputing how powerful an anesthetic this is. The question is, who's responsible for him having the Propofol in a toxic amount?
The defense, I think, is doing an excellent job trying to find a way to suggest Michael did it himself. I don't think it's going to fly at this point. He had Propofol all over his body: his eyes, his legs, his heart, liver, pancreas, his bloodstream, his stomach.
My understanding is the Propofol amount in the stomach was not large. And, while stomach contents can diffuse into the blood, by the same token, what's in the blood can diffuse into the stomach. So it may have come not from being ingested through his mouth.
COOPER: How much of a -- of a defense do you think the defense is actually going to put up? I mean, how much -- how many -- do you think they're going to call a lot of witnesses?
MESEREAU: I think they're going to have to. I don't think the cross-examination, while it's been very professionally done, has been enough to tilt the balance in their favor. They have to at least call some experts to talk about the amount of Propofol in his system, what would be deadly.
And if they can -- I don't -- if they can find experts to say that what Conrad Murray did met the standard of care, I'll be very surprised. But you never know. Very often you can find an expert if you pay them enough.
COOPER: There's no way they would put Conrad Murray on the stand, though?
MESEREAU: I think there is a way.
MESEREAU: If they think all hope is lost, if they think they have nothing to lose, they may put him up there. If they think they've established the possibility of reasonable doubt, then I think they won't, because the cross-examination is going to be brutal, given what he didn't tell the paramedics, what he didn't tell the police, what he didn't tell the hospital personnel, given the fact that he didn't call 911 quickly. There's so many things they're going to butcher him on on cross that I think they'd like to avoid it if they can.
COOPER: Tom, when you hear Michael Jackson's voice on that phone call, obviously in some sort of an altered state or, you know -- well, make of it what you will. What do you make of it? What do you hear?
MESEREAU: First of all, from a personal standpoint, I was his lead criminal defense counsel in his trial. And I worked with him nine months before the trial. The trial lasted almost five months. I've never heard Michael Jackson ever sound that way. He was always articulate, conscious, cooperative, just the nicest person to deal with. It just sickens me -- it just almost just horrifies me to hear him talking that way.
But what also horrifies me is the fact that his doctor would tape-record it and the purpose for what -- I can't imagine it being a good one. The only reason that I can think of him recording that was either to keep it as a souvenir or to sell it, and that just horrifies me to no end.
COOPER: Or to play it for girlfriends or something?
MESEREAU: It's horrible. You know, who it will help in the trial is an interesting question, because beauty is in the eye of the beholder. And how you interpret evidence is a subjective thing. The prosecutors are saying this shows the desperate state Michael was in, that he needed professional help, and he didn't get it. The defense is saying that he was an addict who caused his own demise. So it sort of spans both arguments. I think in the end, it's likely to help the prosecution more than the defense.
COOPER: Tom Mesereau, appreciate it. Thanks for your expertise.
Thanks for having me.
Why a doctor with suspected ties to the raid that killed Osama bin Laden is facing charges in Pakistan.
Plus, the judge who presided over Amanda Knox's appeal breaking her silence on her acquittal. Even though he set her free, it doesn't mean he thinks she's innocent. That and more when we continue.
SESAY: Back to Anderson in a moment. First a "360 Bulletin."
Pakistani officials say a doctor suspected of helping the CIA track down Osama bin Laden will be charged with treason. The physician is accused of setting up a fake vaccination program to try to collect DNA samples from people living at bin Laden's compound. Bin Laden was killed by U.S. Special Forces in a raid at the compound in May.
The Italian judge who presided over Amanda Knox's murder appeal says she may be guilty of killing her roommate, Meredith Kercher, in 2007. But he says she had to be acquitted because of doubts over the evidence in the case. Knox is back in Seattle after her murder conviction was overturned on Monday.
ESPN is pulling the plug on the long-time theme song of "Monday Night Football" starring Hank Williams Jr. The decision comes after Williams compared President Obama to Adolf Hitler.
And we all know Anderson Cooper can pull off the gray hair look. But for those of you who don't like it, cosmetics giant L'Oreal is reportedly trying to develop a daily pill that would prevent your locks from getting the salt-and-pepper look.
Anderson, if you could go back in time, would you take the pill?
COOPER: No, probably not. I don't know. No. I probably wouldn't have. Gosh, darn it, I'm standing up for gray-haired rights.
SESAY: You know, at the end of the day, silver fox is much cooler than mousy brown fox. That's what it would have been if you had kept it like that.
SESAY: Is that laughter? Listen, that was a compliment. Don't get all sensitive.
COOPER: I'm calling H.R. Isha, thanks very much.
Just three days away from our special report, "Bullying: It Stops Here." Today the Maryland governor along with the state's first lady signed her anti-bullying pledge hosted by Facebook. They took part at a high school where they encouraged students, parents and staff to do the same.
To take the pledge yourself, go to Facebook.com/StopBullyingSpeakUp. Again, that's Facebook.com/StopBullyingSpeakUp . Join us for our town hall conversation. It's really fascinating. "Bullying: It Stops Here." Former bra, Osman Wiseman (h), Kelly Ripa, actress Jane Lynch. Some remarkable kids and educators with just a whole bunch Facebook.com/Stop Bullying A whole bunch of remarkable kids who are facing bullying right now today, and they tell you their stories. And it's incredibly moving. That's at 8 p.m. Eastern Sunday night here on CNN.
Coming up, a handbag -- an alligator handbag that cost $39,000. That ends up on our list. We'll be right back
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Time now for the "RidicuList."
And tonight we're adding this backpack. It's from the Olsen twins designer line and purportedly flying off the shelves. And it costs $39,000. You heard me right, $39,000, which coincidentally, is the average starting salary for a teacher. Yes, you may weep now.
So Mary Kate and Ashley say the demand is so big for their $39,000 backpack, it was the first thing in their handbag line that sold out.
Now, for the record, I like the Olsen twins a lot. I think it's cool have they've created new lives for themselves after being child stars. I think they seem like nice, cool people. What I can't understand, though, is why would anyone spend $39,000 on a backpack.
Ashley Olsen said in a bad economy, extreme luxury products do very well. She is probably right. She could probably give Ben Bernanke a run for his money. She told "Women's Wear Daily," "During our last economic crisis in the U.S., the only thing that went up was Hermes." Or Herm-ees. I'm not sure how to pronounce it. Sorry.
The Olsen twins, being great businesswomen, thought to themselves, what's more extreme and more luxurious than this, a backpack that costs more than a brand-new Nissan Sentra? Although, to be fair, you cannot get a new car that's made out of authentic alligator. Oh, yes. Did I mention, it's an alligator backpack. Now, we looked around a little. The truth is, you really don't have to spend $39,000 to get an alligator backpack. This one cost about $33, for instance.
I would like to see more twins getting into the fashion business, though, like the Wonder Twins, for instance. I feel they could use some work these days. Or the Winklevoss twins. They could make handbags entirely of diamonds. Maybe the Nelson twins of the early '90s hair band Nelson are working on their own line of -- actually, they are busy right now. They have a concert a week from Friday in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. Yes, I'm not making that up. Totally seriously, Sheboygan, Wisconsin.
It's actually kind of sweet. They're going on a tribute tour playing songs made famous by their father, Ricky Nelson. Wait, how did I get on the and Nelson? OK, all right. Because of the economy.
Summing it up, ladies and gentlemen, sleep well tonight, for we now live in a world where you can spend $39,000 on a backpack. Wonder Twin powers activate on the "RidicuList."
And that's it for "360." Thanks for watching. "ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" starts now.