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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Jerry Sandusky Trial Continues; Hosni Mubarak Near Death?
Aired June 19, 2012 - 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. It's 10:00 here on the East Coast.
Breaking news out of Egypt, where Hosni Mubarak, the deposed dictator, is near death. There are conflicting reports about the exact condition he is in right now. We first heard he had died. Then a government spokesman said that wasn't true.
Word an official statement might come out soon, but it's been a wild day in Cairo so there's no telling when that might happen.
Earlier in the day, Tahrir Square was filled with opponents of the military regime. Look at how many people filled the square, opponents of the military regime now seemingly in control of the country. We will to Ben Wedeman and Fouad Ajami about how the military has taken control. We will talk about that shortly.
Also, surprise testimony in the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse trial. His wife takes the stand, also a friend of his, a woman who has known him for years and says he's a saint. We will actually talk to her. We have got some tough questions for her to answer.
We begin though tonight with "Raw Politics." President Obama heading home tonight from the G20 summit in Mexico. It dealt largely with Europe's economic meltdown. Also came up the crisis and Syria, especially China's Russia's role in. Where the economy is concerned, though, this summit could have a serious impact on American jobs and perhaps whether the president gets to keep his.
Here's some of what the president said tonight about the economy, about Syria and political sniping from the Romney campaign.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Now markets around the world, as well as governments, have been asking if Europe is ready to do what is necessary to hold the Eurozone together. Over the last two days, European leaders here in Cabos have made it clear that they understand the stakes and they pledged to take the actions needed to address this crisis and restore confidence, stability and growth.
Let me just be a little more specific. First, our friends in Europe clearly grasp the seriousness of the situation and are moving forward with a heightened sense of urgency. I welcome the important steps that they have already taken to promote growth, financial stability and fiscal responsibility. There's no doubt that Russia, which historically has had a relationship with Syria, as well as China, which is generally wary of commenting on what it considers to be the internal affairs of other countries, are and have been more resistant to applying the kind of pressure that is necessary to achieve that political transition.
We had a very candid conversation. I wouldn't suggest that at this point the United States and the rest of the international community are aligned with Russia and China in their positions.
But I do think they recognize the grave dangers of all-out civil war. I do not think they condone the massacres that we've witnessed. And I think they believe that everybody would be better served if Syria had a mechanism for ceasing the violence and creating a legitimate government.
I would point out that we have one president at a time and one administration at a time. And I think traditionally the notion has been that America's political differences end at the water's edge.
I'd also suggest that he may not be familiar with what our suggestions to the Germans have been. And I think sometimes back home there is a desire to superimpose whatever ideological arguments are taking place back home onto a very complicated situation in Europe.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Some of President Obama's comment tonight in Mexico.
More now on the "Raw Politics" with our panel, Republican strategist and veteran of many summits and many more news conference, Ari Fleischer, also, Democratic strategist Paul Begala who's currently advising the top pro-Obama super PAC, foreign affairs correspondent Jill Dougherty, chief business correspondent Ali Velshi, and chief national correspondent John King.
Ali, let's start with you. A lot of the president's Republican critics are pointing to Europe, saying he's taking the country down the same path to economic chaos. You seemed to say just the opposite during our 8:00 program, that the budget-cutters, the austerity fans are the ones repeating Europe's mistake.
ALI VELSHI, CNN CHIEF BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Right.
So Republicans in this country want a piece of the austerity pie. They want to cut spending and lower taxes. The Democrats want to increase spending or keep spending high, possibly a stimulus and raise taxes. Both sides are wrong.
The deficit hawks need to leave the discussion right now and those who think this is time to raise taxes need to step outside of the debate. It is very clear,it's abundantly clear that austerity, those pullbacks are not working across Europe. At the same time, we need a plan so we don't have an endless debt hole.
I think you're going to get a disagreement from Ari on this, but aside from the fact that we share an interest in a barber, one of the things that he and I will agree on is that G20s and G8s and summits like this are generally speaking uninspiring and lack originality.
What I was hoping for was a show of unity, as you heard the president say. You didn't get that with Russia and China regarding Syria and you didn't get it with Europe with respect to dealing with their problems. So in the end this G20 didn't give us what we needed and you will see a reaction to that probably around the world tomorrow.
COOPER: Ari, what did you hear on the money front?
ARI FLEISCHER, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, I think when you look at Europe there really is no solution in sight. And it really doesn't come down to what the G20 decides. It comes down with whether or not Greece will be able to pay back its loans.
And if it can't pay back its loans, will the European governments once again for now the third or fourth time renegotiate the terms that they previously made loans by.
And I think it's going to end in bankruptcy for Greece. And so when the president said today progress was made, let me specific, they know what they need to do, I don't know that anybody knows what they need to do because I don't think they know.
In terms of what Ali is saying, I think the real issue in Washington is can they take any short-term steps that don't damage the weak economy while still keeping their eye on the long-term ball which is we're a nation that is so fundamentally, totally deeply in debt that if we don't tackle the debt issue, we will become like Greece and some of the European nations. We have a $16 trillion debt right now. Under the next 10 years of the president's budget, it's projected to go up to $25 trillion. We can't afford that.
VELSHI: We can afford it because we have 1.5 percent interest rates. Nobody in the world can borrow money as cheaply as the United States can.
COOPER: Paul, how much of a concern for you is it that events in the Eurozone, events completely beyond the U.S. control may actually have a big impact on the campaign trail here?
PAUL BEGALA, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: It's an enormous concern to anybody who is watching this election.
By the way, on the other side, I bet you the Romney campaign is just as nervous. They don't want to say, but if America goes into a recovery. If Europe somehow pulls back from the abyss and America really starts to grow, that's the end of the campaign for Mitt Romney as well.
So both sides actually have a whole lot of their fate out of their hands. And I think that Mr. Romney has got a real challenge. Ali pointed it out. He likes to go out on the campaign trail and say that Barack Obama wants to emulate the capitals of Europe. He's got a point when they do crazy things like provide health care. But now in fact it is the Europeans in Dublin, in London, in Berlin who have imposed austerity and forced their recovering economies back into recession. Austerity has failed in Europe. It's going to fail in America.
We have lost 600,000 public sector workers, teachers, cops, and firefighters even as the private sector has had a little bit of growth. And that's I think part of what is dragging us back here. I think Mr. Romney has the wrong side of it when he goes out on the campaign trail and says we don't need more teachers, cops and firefighters, as he did a week or two ago.
COOPER: John, for you, what came out of tonight, if anything?
JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, politicians learn from the last election. So I would say in the last election -- I'm not disagreeing with my friend Ali Velshi's economic advice.
However, if you look at the Wisconsin recall, the governor who imposed austerity got reelected. Two cities in California voted to rein in public employees' pension, so the voters as they did in 2010 are still backing less spending and more austerity at the moment. I think what you saw today, Anderson, was both sides of the incumbency coin.
Sometimes -- and Ari and Paul know this well -- being an incumbent is great. The president had a news conference. The cable networks all took it live. It was the Rose Garden strategy translated to Los Cabos, Mexico. You can drive the debate and get a lot of attention for the incumbent president. And any challenger, regardless of party, gets jealous of that.
However, the flip side of the incumbency coin is you have to deal with current events. And as Paul just noted, both on Syria and on the economy, there are things happening around the world that the president of the United States cannot control.
The European crisis is going to -- even if they get it perfect, is going to take months. Anderson, Syria, look, China and Russia, they control the keys to the gate right now of any stronger international response. They won't open that gate.
The president of the United States has now less than 140 days to an election and he can't control the biggest national security challenge on the global stage at the moment and the biggest challenge overall number one, the economy.
COOPER: Hold on. Let me just finish off on Syria.
Jill, on Syria, I mean, clearly it seems like there's no movement and certainly no agreement between Russia and the United States here.
JILL DOUGHERTY, CNN FOREIGN AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, no question.
And I think, you know, it was a pretty honest assessment by President Obama that China and Russia simply are not on board. And one of the issues, you look at this, listen to what Putin is saying. He's saying nobody outside can define who stays as president and who goes.
So what Putin's answer is, let the people of Syria decide. But the problem is, the people of Syria are involved in a civil war. So right now, you have that disagreement between Obama and Putin on a crucial issue. Putin has no love lost for Assad either.
COOPER: Right. And their government is giving weapons to the Assad regime, so the idea that they're sort of -- that Russia is taking a hands-off policy is just factually incorrect.
We have got to leave you there. We're short on time.
Ali Velshi, appreciate it. Ari Fleischer, Jill Dougherty, Paul Begala, John King.
Let us know what you think. We're on Facebook. Follow me on Twitter @AndersonCooper.. We will be tweeting over this hour.
Up next, breaking news, Egypt's former dictator near death and tens of thousands in the streets claiming their revolution is being stolen -- details ahead.
COOPER: Welcome back. As we said, there's also breaking news in Egypt tonight, big new, conflicting reports right now about ousted President Hosni Mubarak who was given a life sentence two weeks ago.
A state news agency is reporting that the 84-year-old former dictator, shown here at his trial recently, is on life support after having a stroke and being declared clinically dead.
Mubarak's lawyer however, says he's in a coma and the military says Mubarak's condition is critical, but he is still alive. Now the confusion comes at a volatile time. Let's look at Tahrir Square tonight. Thousands of Egyptians have turned out to protest what they call a coup.
Earlier, tens of thousands were there. The country's military rulers issued a constitutional decree yesterday, giving themselves sweeping powers stripping the presidency of its powers basically an end-run around Egypt's first democratic presidential election, which took place this weekend.
Joining me now is senior international correspondent Ben Wedeman is live in Cairo, and on the phone, Fouad Ajami, senior fellow at Stanford University's Hoover Institution, author of the new book "The Syrian Rebellion," and also chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta.
So Ben, what's the latest right now on Mubarak's health? What do we know?
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, actually we don't know very much. We've got two different narratives. One coming from the official Middle East news agency several hours ago saying that former President Mubarak was quote/unquote "clinically dead."
His lawyer, however, says he's in a coma, his health has deteriorated. He had to be resuscitated several times, but he insists that he's not dead.
Now, we are awaiting -- well, we've been waiting for quite some time for a statement to come out of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, which will hopefully clarify this situation, but this is just one point of lack of clarity that we have.
We have two presidential nominees or candidates who both insist they won in the recent elections. We have a parliament that's been dissolved, but insists it's still sitting.
So these Mubarak reports are just one tip of the iceberg of confusion that seems to be floating in denial right now -- Anderson.
COOPER: And I want to talk about that more with Ben. Sanjay, from a medical standpoint, Mubarak's lawyer saying that he's not dead, he's been in a coma now for hours and he's had water in the lungs for 10 days, his blood pressure is down and that obstructed his breathing and forced doctors to put him on a respirator.
Does that make any sense to you? What do you make of the medical information you've been hearing?
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know, he's obviously an elderly person who has a history of heart disease and cancer. The water on the lungs typically -- probably are referring to pneumonia that has progressed, may have even gotten into his bloodstream.
When what happens, someone's blood pressure can fall and fall precipitously, quickly, and that can lead to the heart problems becoming worse. That part of it makes sense.
I think the confusion and this is a confusing thing even with hospitals here in the states. Clinically dead, I think what they're referring to, brain death. Someone's heart can still be functioning, but their brain is no longer.
And brain death versus coma I think now, reading through all these reports, is the distinction. Brain death is something that's irreversible. That's not something that someone is going to recover from.
Whereas a coma, someone could possibly recover from that. So that's just piecing together all these various and sometimes conflicting reports.
COOPER: So Fouad, does it matter whether Mubarak lives or dies? I mean, in the next day or so in terms of what happens in Egypt now? What's really going on there?
FOUAD AJAMI, JOHNS HOPKINS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED INTERNATIONAL STUDIES: Well, I think that's absolutely important and very unsentimental question, what the hell does it matter?
You have an 84-year-old man in a country with a life expectancy in the mid-60s. You have a man who ruled for 30 years and now he's dead, he's not dead, he's clinically dead.
I'm reminded of that remark that Arabs make in a kind of irreverent way. They say about someone is he dead and buried or just dead. I think the whole saga of Mubarak is a side show of a side show.
Mubarak and the remnants of the regime around him have been very clever. What they have done is they have basically put out these stories about the health of this ruler.
And they have done their best to move this man from prison where he was sent right after his trial when he was sentenced to life in prison. And they returned him to the hospital. This is really what the game is about as far as I can see.
COOPER: So Fouad, in terms of the back story to the presidential election, what the military has done, I mean, has there been in all intents and purposes a coup?
AJAMI: Well, I think there is some element of truth in this. You have this presidential election. You ended up because of the peculiar nature of the way the votes were cast, you end up with the man from the old regime, you end up with Mubarak's old last Prime Minister Shafiq and you end up with a man from the Muslim Brotherhood, each one of them is claiming victory.
But I think to the extent that the numbers can be trusted from Egypt it would appear that Morsi has won, that the candidate of the Muslim Brotherhood has won. And whoever is president will come into a kind of hollowed out presidency, because the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces has asserted its agenda.
What's interesting about Egypt today, Anderson, is the fact that no one is really stepping forward with a keen desire to rule. The army doesn't want to rule because they know the country is in deep distress.
The Muslim Brotherhood doesn't really want to fully rule. So you have the chaos that followed more than 60 years of authoritarian dictatorship.
COOPER: Ben, you lived there, not just reporting from there, you lived there. What do you see happening? I mean, is there now a showdown between the Muslim Brotherhood and the military? What is the next week hold?
WEDEMAN: Well, certainly what we saw today was tens of thousands of Muslim Brotherhood supporters and others flocking to Tahrir Square, to protest what they see is this coup d'etat. Now the Muslim Brotherhood probably wants to push this a little bit further to put more pressure on the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces.
But what they clearly don't want is a direct confrontation because, obviously, the military far outguns the Brotherhood. And when push comes to shove, most Egyptians or many Egyptians probably would support the military against the Brotherhood, which is an organization that has sort of 25 percent to 30 percent of the population solidly behind it.
But that leaves at least 70 percent far from solid behind it. So they're probably pushing for concessions from the military, but not ready for a showdown -- Anderson.
COOPER: We'll continue to follow it closely. Ben Wedeman, Fouad Ajami, Sanjay Gupta, thank you.
Back home, crucial testimony today in the Jerry Sandusky child rape trial. His lawyer still will not say whether Sandusky himself is going to take the stand.
But his wife, Dottie Sandusky, did testify today. And what she said she saw and heard when a young boy spent night at their house, we'll have that one when we continue.
COOPER: The massive wildfire that has scorched nearly 60,000 acres in northern Colorado is about half-contained. Will firefighters finally get some cooperation from the weather? We will have the latest ahead.
COOPER: Hundreds of firefighters working to contain a massive wildfire in Colorado cannot seem to catch a break from the weather. High temperatures, gusty winds have impeded the fight against the fire, which has almost consumed about 60,000 acres.
It's about half-contained at this point.
Meteorologist Chad Myers has an update now.
CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Anderson, it was a crazy day with winds today, not because they were so gusty, but because they actually changed direction.
For most of the morning, the area under concern there was in a southwest flow before you got to this cold front which turned the winds to the north. So all of a sudden, firefighters think they're fighting a fire one way and then an hour later, the winds shift and the fire is coming back at them. Those are the most dangerous conditions you can get out when you get weather like with wind shifts because of a cold front or a warm front or really for any reason for that matter.
Almost 60,000 acres burned, 189 homes destroyed now. That's the new number. It's half-contained, 50 percent contained. But that's what it looks like sometimes.
And I know if you're on the East Coast or West Coast, you may not be able to really picture this. But an iReport that just came out of Brian Maltez (ph), this is an amazing shot of what sunset looked like there. And it's getting better, but not fast enough.
Now, I know we're talking about Colorado, but this is going to be a long season for fires because the entire southwestern part of the country is in a drought, somewhere between a regular drought and an extreme drought. And fires are going to continue all summer long. This could be a very bad fire season -- Anderson.
COOPER: Yes. Chad, thanks very much.
COOPER: Jerry Sandusky's wife took the stand and the child ex abuse trial and so did another staunch defender, a woman who we will talk to just ahead.
COOPER: Remember WikiLeaks? Julian Assange, he's asking for political asylum in his fight against getting sent to Sweden to face sexual assault allegations. We'll have the latest ahead.
COOPER: Welcome back. "Crime & Punishment" now. For a second straight day, Jerry Sandusky's lawyers tried to portray him as a normal, good-hearted, generous person, not a sexual predator.
The defense is trying to counter the graphic testimony eight alleged victims gave last week in the child rape trial. Former Penn State assistant football coach is charged, as you know, with sexually abusing ten boys over a 15-year period.
Today, his lawyers questioned the techniques of police investigators who interviewed the accusers. They also called a psychologist to the stand along with character witnesses, friends and former colleagues of Sandusky. Crucial testimony came from Sandusky's wife of more than 40 years, Dottie.
Jason Carroll was in the courtroom today. He joins me now.
Jason, the most anticipated defense witness besides Jerry has, no doubt, been Dottie Sandusky. She took the stand. She said she never saw any inappropriate contact between her husband and those young boys, correct? JASON CARROLL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That is correct. She also contradicted, specifically, the testimony of two of the accusers, No. 4 and No. 9.
No. 4 you'll remember, says that Jerry Sandusky took him to the Alamo Bowl back in 1999 and tried to sexually assault him in a hotel room, when Dottie sort of walked in and said, "What's going on?"
She says, according to her, she did walk and said, "What's going on?" But she said both men were clothed, Anderson. And she also says she said, "What's going on," because Jerry Sandusky was angry, because this young boy refused to go to a luncheon, an expensive luncheon that they had paid for.
With relation to No. 9, accuser No. 9, he was the one who testified who said he had been down in the basement of Sandusky's home and had screamed repeatedly for help. Dottie was asked about that by Joe Amendola, defense attorney, who said, quote, "If something happened in your basement, could you hear it?"
She answered, "I think so, yes."
Then he asked, "Did you ever hear someone yelling for help while he was staying there?"
Her answer, "No."
She also said, Anderson, that her husband had no inappropriate contact with any young boys.
COOPER: What did we hear from experts about this histrionic personality disorder? The defense is saying explains some of those letters that he wrote to one of the accusers.
CARROLL: Right, we're hearing a lot more about this histrionic personality disorder. Basically this is a disorder, according to some of the doctors who testified, it's basically a disorder where you have to be the center of attention. You cannot be on the sidelines. And when that happens, you act in some inappropriate ways.
Some of the things that they brought up, you have to have attention, approval, respect, admiration and intimacy.
Well, basically, the prosecution doctor, you know, got up there and basically said there's no way Jerry Sandusky could not be the center of attention. Throughout his entire career, he was an assistant football coach. So how then could he suffer from this disorder?
So you could see both sides sort of going back and forth on this issue throughout the court proceeding.
COOPER: Dueling experts. Jason Carroll, appreciate it.
One of the witnesses called by the defense today was a woman named Joyce Porter. She's a close friend of Jerry and Dottie Sandusky. She says she's known them for 40 years, and believes without question Jerry Sandusky is innocent. I talked to her earlier.
COOPER: Joyce, you've called Jerry Sandusky a saint. Why are you so convinced that he's innocent?
JOYCE PORTER, FRIEND OF SANDUSKY: I've known him for 40 years. I think he's a wonderful man. He's been very good to people in my family. I've had one son with Down syndrome who Jerry and Dottie would take for dinner, take out of town for football games. I've had another son that went to his football camp. He's written to him when he's had some troubles in life. Jerry's a wonderful man.
COOPER: There's at least ten alleged victims right now, ten accusers of Sandusky's sexual abuse, eight of whom have testified in the trial. Do you believe that -- that they're all lying?
PORTER: Well, I believe in Jerry, and I believe in the thousands of lives he's already touched who have been bettered by his relationship with them. And when you count thousands, plus knowing him for 40 years...
COOPER: Why do you -- so why do you think these -- these eight have testified?
PORTER: You know, you'd have to ask them.
COOPER: But, I mean, you must think that they're not telling the truth.
PORTER: Yes, I must think that.
COOPER: Do you believe they're in it for money? I mean, there have been, you know, the defense attorney has indicated that, you know, maybe they're in it for some sort of financial settlement down the road.
PORTER: Well, I think they come from poor backgrounds and I think money would be a big motivator for them. Most of them have already gotten attorneys who aren't charging them anything.
COOPER: There's also eyewitness testimony from Mike McQueary, another coach who says he saw Jerry Sandusky sexually assaulting a boy in the locker room shower at night.
And McQueary, as far as I can tell, has nothing to gain momentarily from coming forward. In fact, he's been placed on administration leave from the coaching job at Penn State since all this happened. Why do you think he's testified that?
PORTER: Well, his testimony has been different to different people. And I think that he didn't say it was -- he's changed his story on whether it was really sexual or who knew what it was. And as far as I know, he's on paid because he's a whistle blower. And now he's suing Penn State, so he's out to make even more money. COOPER: What Mike McQueary says he saw, though, he heard rhythmic slapping, and he saw Sandusky naked in the shower with this little boy, standing behind him late at night in a shower. Is there any explanation for -- in your mind, why Jerry Sandusky would be naked, showering with a little boy and soaped up with a little boy?
PORTER: I think a lot of guys are working out. They were playing basketball. Then they go take a shower. Where is this little boy that Mike McQueary supposedly saw? Why hasn't he come forward? If there's even a witness to say that this happened?
COOPER: So you see no possible reasons why -- why somebody doesn't come forward and talk about sexual abuse that occurred to them as a child?
PORTER: I don't know.
COOPER: You say people take showers with each other all the time. But I mean, I was on a team in college. I've talked to many coaches. I've never heard of coaches showering with little boys, let alone players on their team. But little boys late at night in a coach's shower.
PORTER: Well, you weren't here for court yesterday when two coaches said yes, they take showers with boys. And you go to the YMCA. And I go in a locker room after swimming. And there's all ages of women naked in the locker room there taking showers. So what's the difference?
COOPER: A grown man soaping up a little boy late at night alone in a shower. That doesn't seem unusual?
PORTER: No. He was like a father figure to a lot of these kids. You know, he'd help them take a shower. Who knows how old this boy was?
COOPER: Well, do you think a 12-year-old, a 13-year-old, do you think they need help taking showers?
PORTER: Well, Mike McQueary said he was anywhere from 8 to 12. So he could have been 8.
COOPER: Well, that's Joyce Porter who testified today and stands by Jerry Sandusky, no matter what, as you will -- as you hear.
You're going to hear more of my interview with Joyce Porter tomorrow night on 360.
Closing arguments in the trial could begin as early as Thursday. The defense expects to rest its case tomorrow.
Joining me now is former Los Angeles deputy district attorney, Marcia Clark. She's also the author of "Guilt by Degrees." Also, criminal defense attorney Mark Geragos is joining us. Mark, how important is somebody like Joyce Porter? I mean, she only saw him a couple of times each year. Last night you talked about building blocks to reasonable doubt, and that's what the defense is trying to kind of present. Is that just her purpose?
MARK GERAGOS, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, absolutely her purpose, and I think she demonstrates exactly what the defense wants to show here.
Look, here's somebody who has known him for 40 years, who comes from that community, who thinks he does great work. You know, he basically, no matter what you asked her, she wasn't having any of it. And that's exactly what the defense is hoping that she resonates with one of the jurors.
COOPER: Marcia, do you think she resonates with jurors?
MARCIA CLARK, FORMER ASSISTANT D.A.: I doubt it. To tell you the truth, I think the jurors are going to be very well aware of the fact that this is anything but a neutral witness. She's very biased. This is very much somebody who is in Sandusky's camp, who feels beholden to him, grateful to him for helping to take care of her side.
If any of the jurors are paying attention, they're probably wondering what may have happened with her son that she's not aware of.
COOPER: Mark, what kind of an impact do you think the wife, Dottie Sandusky, had on the stand today?
GERAGOS: Well, you know, everybody that I've read, at least from the accounts so far, has kind of downplayed it, said it wasn't that strong of a witness or wasn't that memorable of a witness. And I think they miss exactly what the defense was doing.
The defense was laying out basically timeline things, things that she was there, that she didn't hear anything, that nobody said anything. She made certain comments about certain of the complaining witnesses that I think are going to be woven into the closing argument.
I think she was a significant witness. And I think you're going to hear about her and the discrepancy she's pointing out in the prosecution's case by proxy, so to speak, in the closing argument.
COOPER: In your experience, is it common that, you know, victims or alleged victims of a sexual crime, that they might change their stories?
CLARK; Absolutely. Anderson, this happens all the time, especially with child molest victims. They start out not admitting anything. And they admit the least amount that they can stand to admit, because it's difficult for them to confront what they've been through and to admit to themselves that they've been through it. I think therapy is necessary to help them understand it's not their fault. It has nothing to do with them. But they have to get over that in order to get the final statement that has all of the details in it and that takes some time. And yes that does create inconsistent statements as you go forward. But no, it does not show anything bad about their credibility at all.
COOPER: Mark, though, that's a sympathetic way of looking at it. The defense will just say that, look, they're changing their stories, and that might bring up some credibility issues.
GERAGOS: Well, yes. Marcia argues this like the good prosecutor that she is. The only problem is, the jury is going to be instructed that you look at those inconsistencies if they're on material points, points that matter, then the jury is instructed that they can disregard the testimony.
So she can kind of pooh-pooh the inconsistencies, but when they're on major points, and in a lot of these cases they are, the jury is going to get the law. They're instructed that they took an oath and to follow the law. And the law is that you can disregard in its entirety the witness's testimony. So I am not so sanguine as Marcia is that this is going to be such a slam dunk for the prosecution. I just think that there's some very troubling things about this case and the way it's come out.
CLARK: It has to be a witness who is willfully false in a material part of the testimony in order for the jury instruction to allow them to dismiss their testimony entirely. And I'm not seeing that kind of willfully false material misstatement by any of these witnesses.
GERAGOS: When a witness says before nothing happened or a witness says it happened on such and such a date and they know demonstrably that it couldn't have happened on that date, it doesn't get much more material or willful.
CLARK: I disagree. I disagree. I disagree. A young boy 12 years old doesn't remember exactly what date he was sodomized? I think I understand why he might have trouble remembering that. And I don't think that would cause a rational jury to forget...
GERAGOS: Somebody is talking about -- somebody is talking about when you're interviewed before and you said nothing happened. And now you're interviewed again, and you say something happened. That is material. That is willful. You can explain it as somebody who doesn't...
CLARK: That can be material, but you know what? But looking at the way these witnesses...
GERAGOS: It is material. It's the definition of material.
CLARK: These witnesses were traumatized, Mark. These witnesses were traumatized, and it's going to be up to the jury to evaluate their demeanor.
GERAGOS: If you believe it happened. Your whole argument, all the way the prism through which you look at this says they were traumatized. You assume it happened. If you don't assume that it happened, which the jury is instructed to do...
CLARK: I don't assume it happened, Mark no. I don't assume anything. I listened to the witness's testimony.
GERAGOS: You come there with a presumption of innocence.
COOPER: One at a time. Let her finish.
GERAGOS: Marcia, if they're traumatized, you're assuming it happened. Other than the fact they may be traumatized by having to testify. But if you're saying they are traumatized, you assume it happened. Jurors are not instructed to assume that it happened. Jurors are instructed to presume innocence. So don't mislead the public as to what the standard is for the jurors.
CLARK: Obviously, Mark, I would never mislead the public. Obviously they're not -- they're not required to assume anything. They're required not to assume. And I've never said otherwise.
They are required, however, to listen into the testimony and determine whether or not the truth of the charges has been proven beyond a reasonable doubt. And in doing that, they look at a witness's demeanor. And it's not just the words they say; it's also how they say them.
So a jury can sit there and watch a young little child say, or a young man say, "I was a child. I was afraid to say. I didn't want to say. I didn't want to admit but then finally I realized I had to tell the truth."
And they can look at that and say, "That to me is not a material inconsistency or a willfully false statement."
COOPER: Thank you both, guys.
Former Rutgers University student Dhahran Ravi is out of prison. We'll tell you why he got an early release, coming up.
COOPER: A lot more happening tonight. Isha is here with a "360 Bulletin" -- Isha.
ISHA SESAY, CNNI ANCHOR: Anderson, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is at the Ecuadorian embassy in London, seeking political asylum. That's according to Ecuador's foreign minister. Assange is fighting extradition to Sweden for questioning in a sex abuse case. He's been under house arrest in Britain for a year and a half.
Dharun Ravi is out of prison tonight. The former Rutgers University student convicted of spying on and intimidating his gay roommate served 20 days of a 30-day sentence. The early release was granted for good behavior and work credit.
His former roommate, Tyler Clementi, killed himself by jumping off New York's George Washington Bridge.
And Michael Phelps could be seeking a new record at the summer Olympics. He's participating in ten races at the Olympic trials next week in Nebraska. If he qualifies for all of them, he may take home ten medals this summer. Phelps earned eight gold medals at the 2008 Beijing games. Ten medals. Incredible.
COOPER: That would be amazing. Isha, thanks.
Time for "The Shot." Mr. Rogers -- I don't know if you've seen this, Isha. Mr. Rogers went viral in a new video. It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood for an auto tune remix of his old garden of your mind message with a new beat. I love this. Take a listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
FRED ROGERS, CHILDREN'S HOST: There's a cassette player with a little cassette here. There's nothing written on it. So we'll just have to play it to see what it is.
Do you ever imagine things? Are they scary things? Do you ever imagine things? Things you'd like to have? Did you ever see a cat's eyes in the dark and wonder what they were?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I love this. I've watched this so much times. I actually think it's a good tune. The mash-up tribute was requested by PBS Digital Studios. It's the work of Symphony of Science's John B. Boswell. It's really well done.
SESAY: OK. Before I say this and people send me hate mail, I don't get this. It just sounds a little creepy to me. I'm just throwing it out there.
SESAY: I'm just saying. I know, I know folks in America, I'm sure I've committed some kind of cardinal faux pas. It's a little creepy.
COOPER: Do you know who Mr. Rogers is?
SESAY: Yes, I have been schooled by many an individual. It's creepy.
COOPER: Are you calling Mr. Rogers creepy?
SESAY: I wouldn't go that far.
COOPER: Are you daring to say that? Are you going to go that far? Are you really going to go that far?
SESAY: I don't want to be inundated with hate mail. I'm not going all the way.
COOPER: You're saying the auto tuning of him is creepy?
SESAY: Just a little bit.
COOPER: You watch what you say right now. What you say right now may just determine the course of your career. So what was that?
SESAY: Nothing. Just, a little creepy. Good night.
COOPER: You cannot say anything against Mr. Rogers. Mr. Rogers -- I love that auto tune. I think it's actually really cool. It's kind of a cool -- you should listen to the whole thing.
SESAY: You thought it was a cool jam. Give me a break.
COOPER: What do you have in England? What do you have in Britain? Like, Ms. Whimsy and the Tea Cup Patrol or something?
SESAY: We had Worzel Gummidge.
COOPER: OK. I rest my case.
SESAY: He was a scarecrow. He used to take his head off. And then he could change his head.
COOPER: Westle Gummidge. You and Piers Morgan, I tell you. Forget about it.
SESAY: OK. You can go now.
COOPER: Yes, you can go now. Westle Gummidge. "Oh, Westle Gummidge on the telly. Get the tea. Westle Gummidge and her magical scarecrow."
SESAY: It's Worzel Gummidge. Why don't people understand me in this country?
COOPER: It's what? Worzel Gummers?
SESAY: Worzel Gummidge. I give up.
COOPER: You're just digging yourself deeper. Isha, thank you.
Coming up, if you're on the fence whether to go vegan or not, something happened today that will definitely convince you. "The RidicuList" is next.
COOPER: Time now for "The RiducuList." And tonight we're adding anyone who isn't a vegan.
Now, like many people I've resisted veganism, mostly because I've been waiting for technology to progress to the point where they perfect a vegan version of the Big Mac. I honestly wish I could be vegan, but I think I lack the essential will power. Now, there are plenty of good reasons to be vegan: health, longevity, to be more like Ed Begley Jr. A famous vegan, as is Alicia Silverstone.
If you were looking for a Sherpa to help you scale the mountain of veganism, these were your go-to celebrities. Until today. Because now, a celebrity voice has joined the vegan chorus that's impossible to ignore. And out of the refrain, rising like a siren song from that celebrity voice, we can no longer pretend we don't have all the information we need to pull the vegan trigger.
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Mike Tyson.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You're a vegan?
MIKE TYSON, BOXER: Yes.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What changed you?
TYSON: Well, I need -- woo, I threw up the white flag. There were too many prison cells, too many jails, too many lawsuits, too many bankruptcies, too many women, too many venereal diseases, too many everything.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: You're a little confused, right? The reason why Spike Lee was sitting next to Mike Tyson in that "Today Show" interview is because he's directing Tyson's one-man show on Broadway this summer, which actually, I really want to see. That's what confused you about the whole thing, right? The part about too many venereal diseases, that was probably clear as a bell.
Let's hear more of Mike Tyson's reasons for going vegan.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TYSON: I really got tired. And you know, like every time my prostitute girlfriend came back from a trip, I had to sleep with her. I had to live a different life.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You've made a conscious choice...
SPIKE LEE, DIRECTOR: All right, Champ. All right, Champ.
TYSON: I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I was a prostitute hunter.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I can't pretend I totally follow the logic there, but I don't really want to be on the bad side of a former heavyweight boxing champion. And the truth is, I really hope things work out for Mike Tyson. There's kind of something about him I find that's really sympathetic. I've always kind of felt like he was taken advantage of by a lot of people around him, and I hope those days are over.
So I'm just going to go ahead and say yes, a resounding yes. Let's all follow Mike Tyson's example and go vegan, if not for the animals, for the prostitutes, I guess?
That's it for us. Thanks for watching.
"ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" starts now.