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tv   American Morning  CNN  May 23, 2011 3:00am-6:00am PDT

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a tornado destroying much of joplin, missouri. i'm christine romans. reports of at least 30 people killed and 75% of that city may be wiped out. the governor calls out the national guard declaring a state of emergency. an all-out manhunt by los angeles police may have finally paid off. a brutal attack at a dodgers game and police say the man responsible is now behind bars. the victim, though, is still fighting for his life. on this "american morning." welcome. thanks for being with us. monday, may 23rd. just 12 hours ago people in joplin, missouri, heard the tornado warnlgs go off.
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many ran to seek safer ground, but boy, the devastation is coming to light today. >> that's right. 12 hours later life has changed in joplin, missouri. a powerful tornado ripped that city apart. the red cross said 75% of the town is virtually gone with reports of at least 30 people killed and dozens more injured. 50,000 people live in the city. no phone service, power lines are down, cars and trucks smashed and flipped. the governor calling out the national guard and declaring a state of emergency this morning. >> to make matters worse the city's main hospital st. john's medical center where people would have gone to get help suffered extensive damage. witnesses say windows were blown out on some of the top floors. medical records, x-rays and other items scattered nearly 70 miles away. at least 100 patients hadden to transferred to other area hospitals. crews combing through mounds of debris and rubble searching for survivors. brian todd is live at joplin at
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st. john's. when we say searching for survivors, do they have any estimation of how many people could be missing in the wake of this tornado? >> no estimates yet, kiran. combing through this area right here. you've got the st. john's medical center behind me. i'm going to show you a little bit of the damage. our photo journalist is going to kind of hone in there as tightly as he can. the building as you can see, the facade has been ripped apart. of the part of the top of the building has been taken away. we saw doctors go in there to try to retrieve medical records and other things. we're told most of the people, if not all of the people have evacuated. we're going to go over here to give you a sense of some of the other devastation here and around the town. we got here a short time ago. a scene of utter devastation. everything seems to be wiped out. look at the cars over here. you have a van and suv on top of a pick-up truck over here. the cars are twisted. some have been burned. you can see there's wreckage of
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cars all over the place. this is a scene repeated throughout the city. just homes have been reduced to virtually nothing almost as far as the eye can see. you mentioned a red cross official did say about 75% of the town is gone. governor jay nixon not giving specific casualty figures yet. a lot he says will not be determined until daylight arrives about an hour from now. they've been trying to work to pull people out of wreckage to see if anybody is still trapped. that's unclear. there are emergency crews combing this entire area looking for people who might be trapped. i'm going to bring in someone who can tell us more, miranda lewis, a spokeswoman for the st. john's medical center. thanks for coming by. tell us first of all what can you tell us about the people in there, how many were in there and how many have you gotten out? >> we had roughly 180 patients and everybody has been evacuated from the hospital so that's all good news. we had a couple hundred co-workers as well.
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>> there were reports of fires in there. when you arrived there was some natural gas leaks and it was dangerous. what happened there? >> i personally did not see any fires. they were trying to get people away from the hospital. there were natural gas fires here as well as all around this area. so they were working very hard to get that contained and then to get people to safety. >> there's a triage center over there we know. >> right. >> are patients being taken to other medical centers? is there enough capability to handle the volume from this hospital? >> luckily the town has all pulled together. we've got ems crews and hospital workers from all around. right after the tornado hit, we sent our critical patients across the street to freeman health system and, you know, they were great in taking care of our critical patients. we sent the ambulatory walking wounded to a community center in the middle of joplin and then there was some spillover into actually a catholic high school at that point. so now we're trying to get them all back contained into the
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community center. >> you're one of the first witnesses we've had a chance to talk to. tell us what it was like when this thing hit, how much warning did you have? what was it like? >> this is on the west end of joplin. i live on the east end. we did hear the sirens go off. from what i've heard there was little warning here. the sirens did go off, so they did have some. a tornado this big, it's difficult to prepare for something of this magnitude. >> thank you for giving us the information, best of luck to you and your crew as you try to recover from this. thank you very much. >> thank you. >> what we're told is there's going to be a news conference maybe in about a half hour to get a read on the numbers we're talking about. daylight not for another hour and they're still combing through what is a completely devastated city. it's hard to give you a real picture. when daylight comes we will be able to shoot better pictures and a sense of the devastation here. it is -- it looks to be a town almost completely wiped out at this point. >> at least the good news for that hospital they did get all
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of the patients out and into different facilities. thanks so much, brian. search and rescue efforts as brian alluded to are under way still and they should know more at sun up. there is so much destruction it's impossible to know how many people may be trapped beneath the debris. >> we're joined by keith, emergency management director for the city of joplin and jasper county. welcome to the program. first off, still dark there, you do know there are places where you know people are trapped. as soon as light comes up and you can plow through the roads that will be the first order of business i assume? >> that is correct. as a matter of fact, we still have a list. we have been working all night long and we will continue to do so you until we get to everybody. >> we are just getting a sense of the scope of this, hearing perhaps 2,000 buildings damage ord destroyed in some sway. people are saying 75% of the city is gone? >> well, that's probably a very high number, but the particular area that the tornado went through is just like the central portion of the city and it's very dense in terms of population. that 2,000 structures is not a surprise to us at all.
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>> six-mile long path, this storm carved out. tell us a little bit about what you're seeing in the dark on the ground from your vantage point? >> it's very difficult in the dark, but it seems like everywhere you go there's destruction, buildings are down, trees down, homes are down, businesses have been crushed. canopies have been thrown to the side. rvs have been tossed into another house. roofs have been taken off. it's quite amazing. >> how are you guys coordinating any type of, first of all, the search and rescue, but second of all being able to do the disaster cleanup given phone service as i understand it was largely cut off for the city and just the sheer challenge of trying to move around? >> it's been a little crazy. fortunately we do have a good emergency management system here. we have a lot of good people we worked with. when the phone systems went down we were able to switch over to alternate communications by radio. a lot of good people in the area that have worked with us in years past and we've worked with them and we've been able to get them in here.
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we have over 40 agencies that have responded from kansas, oklahoma, arkansas and missouri with about 410 personnel in those 40 agencies. >> can you tell us about the injuries, the scope of the injuries at this point, and where you're sending people? we know your hospital took a direct hit. >> yes. the main hospital, st. john's did. we have freeman hospital across the way. we don't have a definitive count yet as far as fatalities we're working on that number and hope to have something later for the news conference. freeman hospital has reported they treated over 400 people just for injuries. >> wow. 400 people for injuries and as we understand that's right next -- across the street at least. >> they're across the street south of me. >> the american red cross spokesperson said 75% of the town is gone. you say that's a high estimate. if you had to sort of just taking a look at what you've seen what do you think in terms of how much damage for the town of joplin. >> between 10 and 20. >> so that's much lower than -- >> yes. >> they're estimating.
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also the other question is about how much warning. it's interesting to hear some witnesses say they felt they had warning on one side of town, whereas on the area where -- around st. john's there are some questions about whether they had enough time to do much, apparently just trying to wheel some patients into the hallways and hope for the best? >> well, obviously those situations are very confused but i can tell you i was the one that had them turn on the sirens. by our count we had 17 minutes time between when we turned the sirens on and report the strike. >> 17 minutes to prepare. this is a part of the country it's not as if you're not used to tornado. people know to take shelter, get in the basement, out of harm's way. was it the classic tornado where you would hear the sfloor tell me what you were hearing? >> yeah. it was -- >> sounds like we've lost keith. >> we're still here. we're still here. >> it was -- you could hear it. this was a monster store. >> classic type things reports you have. the train coming by and people
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figuring out -- people thought it was a major gas release, any types of expressions of what it sounds like when they come through. >> emergency management for the city of joplin. best of luck as you continue to get on the grown and do your search and rescue and looking frds to hearing more from your news conference later on in the morning. the twin cities took a direct lit from a powerful twister on sunday. northern minneapolis feeling the brunt of it. one person was killed there. 22 others were hurt. entire blocks of homes destroyed there in the twin cities. >> ambulances lightnining up to victims away. thousands without power. the mayor warning everyone to stay out of the area so emergency crews can do their jobs. as we've said this has proven to be difficult. rob joins us on set. you know, we've seen a swarm of an awful lot of destructive weather including records set for tornados. >> now with today, regardless of what the fatality count is, we're he going to be -- we'll have broken the record, set back in 1974, surpassed that year i
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should say, and this will be the deadliest tornado season since the 1950s. really tremendous amount of destruction and nature not done yet. through the middle of may, mentioned that minneapolis had a tornado with fatality, numerous injuries there. also destructive and deadly tornado rolling across kansas on saturday. want to show you what the radar looks like when this tornado rolled through joplin yesterday and this tornado, this radar imagery from 3:00 in the afternoon to 9:00 at night. you see that super cell blow up to the north and west of joplin and drive down to the south and east. this is a little different look than the one that rolled through tuscaloosa and alabama. that was a more distinct super cell on the ground and rotating for 200, 300 miles. this one just blowing up in the southeast corner of kansas and making its way across joplin, missouri. we mentioned the lead time as far as the warning goes. over 22 minutes of lead time from the time the national weather service issued that warning from when it struck.
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so this could have been a lot worse for sure let's look at the storm reports for the day. we had 48 reports of tornadoes stretching from as far north as minnesota to as far south as parts of oklahoma and the one that rolled through joplin, missouri. devastating day with over 700 reports of severe weather yesterday. the threat for today, not quite as bad but it's a little more widespread from oklahoma all the way to d.c., a slight risk of seeing some thunderstorms that could produce severe weather. i think tomorrow will be a bigger day as far as a bull's eye in the more typical spots that does include southwestern missouri again. as far as the current radar, just give you an idea where the most intense storms are from nashville, lexington, louisville, across the ohio river valley before too long. not a whole lot of tremendous weather with this. it's kind of weakened somewhat since the initial line that it rolled through last night, but there's going to be rough and
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tumble thunderstorms through the appalachians in the next couple hours. unbelievable weekend. may started off quiet. i know it felt like we had a rough couple weeks, but from the time that the tuscaloosa, alabama, outbreak happened, to now, it's really been a relatively quiet couple of weeks. boom, here we go again. >> all you hope is for spring serenity after everything that's happened and hasn't happened yet. >> couple weeks. >> thanks, rob. also new, all hands on deck effort in louisiana to keep the mississippi river at bay. more than 2,000 inmates at the louisiana state penitentiary have been put to work, filling sandbags and patching levee holes. floods destroyed part of the pen ten areary. the region is surg suffering from the worst floods to hit. a volcano erupts in iceland shutting down the airports. so far flights across europe have not been disrupted but they are keeping their eye on this. airlines were told yesterday to be prepared for cancellations. the cloud is expected to hit scotland tomorrow and it could
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reach france and spain by thursday. after an all-out manhunt los angeles police now have a suspect in custody in connection with the brutal attack of a giants fan on opening day. police say 31-year-old giovanni ramirez was the primary aggressor in a vicious beating that left the victim, bryan stow, in a coma. ramirez is charged with assault with a deadly weapon and being held on $1 million bail. stow, a father of two, remains in critical condition. talk about guts, 22-year-old swiss race driver simone, de sylvester wrecked her car sunday. she suffered second degree burns to her hand and said she didn't know if she wanted to get back into the race car this weekend to qualify for next week's indy 500 but she did and yes, she did qualify. there's a look at the wreck right there. this is what happened to last year's indy 500 winner. dario franchitti, was cruising in saturday's qualifying run when he ran out of gas.
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instead of challenging for the pole position in next week's race, he'll have to settle for the ninth position back in the third row. run out of gas? >> ride that margin so closely and then boom. >> at 8:40 we'll be joined by three special guests in our new york studio, danica patrick, defending champ dario franchitti and 2009 winner and former "dancing with the stars" champ and buds with me and christine. >> that's right. >> helio castroneves. >> great time when he was here last time. >> check out don king. that's him at fenway park this weekend watching his beloved red sox from above the green monster in left field when he happened to catch david ortiz's 300th career home run. >> what are the chances? >> john sent -- can you believe it? john sent the ball down to big pappy and the slugger sent him this cool autographed bat in return. john king, makes news, and he makes news. >> crazy. >> how funny he happened to
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be -- it was -- he was pretty far up there. >> probably humming in there pretty good. i'm going to get the play by play. see his hands, if they're bruised up at all. >> congratulations john king. congratulations david ortiz on your 300th home run. president obama in ireland tracing his irish roots. a live report from dublin ahead. >> who can forget this. princess beatrice's hat sells at auction. how much it went for and what she's doing with the money. color color...don't go away.
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personal pricing now on brakes. tell us what you want to pay. we do our best to make that work. deal! my money. my choice. my meineke. president obama begins his week-long tour of europe. he arrived in ireland about 90 minutes ago and is packing a lot into his 24 hour visit there. >> that's right. he had a chance to meet with the irish president and meeting with the prime minister and then heading to moneygall village home to his ancestors as they discovered. white house correspondent
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brianna keilar traveling with the president and joins us live from dublin. it's always a fun parlor game, isn't it? when american president the get to trace their irish linage, something that makes the irish very proud as well, brianna. >> yes. they're very happy to claim president obama. he's only 1/32 irish but when his roots were uncovered back during the campaign, he said he wanted to hoist a pint in his an sest ral homeland, the tiny village of moneygall home to about 300 people who are quite excited about the prospect of the president visiting. they spruced up the town. they've got the american flags waving. they've got the o' obama t-shirts out. they hope the president stops by one of the two pubs to hoist a pint with him. >> we talk about the visit with the heads of state, where else is he going on his short visit to ireland? >> yeah.
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well, ireland is one of four stops. he's going to go on to london in the u.k., to france for the g-8 economic summit and then finish up in warsaw, poland. a lot of this, especially the g-8 summit, talking with european allies to talk about recovering from the global recession. one of the thornier issues is the israeli/palestinian peace process. with palestine looking to be recognized, for the coalition government looking to have its independence recognized before the u.n. in september and a lot of european allies prepared to go along with that, the u.s. is obviously very much opposed to that, kiran, and you should definitely expect certainly behind closed doors some candid conversations about what will be certainly a thorny issue. >> absolutely. brianna keilar in ireland, thanks so much. it's official, republican tim pawlenty is running for president. the former minnesota governor made that announcement on an intern net video sunday night
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saying his campaign will be different because he'll be telling the american people the truth. meantime indiana governor mitch daniels turned down a gop bid because of, quote, family concerns. daniels is the latest in a string of prominent republicans choosing not to return. then all of the -- many editorials bemoaning the fact that does the gop have a contender that can beat the president in 2012. it's our question of the day. which republican in your opinion has the best chance of being a president? it doesn't have to be someone who's declared. there's calls to try to strongarm some of the people who said they were not going to be running to maybe reconsider in the wake of some of the others deciding not to. send us an e-mail, tweet us, find us on facebook we'll read your comments later in the hour. >> those that say much of the republican field is dominated by the people who have not yet declared or said i will not run. we're following breaking news out of joplin, missouri, search and rescue under way after a massive tornado tears the town away. 20 or 30% of the town could be destroyed. many, many injured.
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hundreds injured. a direct hit on the town hospital. we'll have the latest after the break. [ male announcer ] in 2011, at&t is at work, building up our wireless network all across america. we're adding new cell sites... increasing network capacity, and investing billions of dollars to improve your wireless network experience. from a single phone call to the most advanced data download, we're covering more people in more places than ever before in an effort to give you the best network possible. at&t. rethink possible. yet an instant classic." with sports car styling and power, plus the refinement and space of a luxury sedan, the jaguar xf is a timeless blend of performance and craftsmanship. see how jaguar outperforms the competition at or visit your local jaguar dealer.
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26 minutes after the hour. time for minding your business this morning. just in time for the summer travel season, the price at the pump is falling. right now, the national average is $3.91 per gallon, that's a nine cent drop from two weeks ago. analysts say we could see another drop before the memorial day weekend. pirates take over the box office. the latest installment of "pirates of the caribbean" raked in $90 million. the comedy "bridesmaids" brought in $21 million. princess beatrice's pretzel like hat sold.
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the bid, $130,000 on ebay. the wacky hat made its debut at the royal wedding last month. all the money donated to two children's charities. "american morning" will be back right after this break. it's water from the drinking fountain at the mall. [ male announcer ] great tasting tap water can now come from any faucet anywhere. introducing the brita bottle with the filter inside.
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30 minutes past the hour. unfortunately our top story is a very, very tragic story. a deadly tornado plowed through joplin, missouri. we're getting reports of at least 30 people killed. that number could go up. emergency management's director who we spoke to a few moments ago, telling us that at least 400 people were treated at one hospital alone for injuries. the governor has called in the national guard and declared a state of emergency. joplin's main hospital meantime there it is now, st. john's regional medical center, was extensively damaged. at least 100 patients had to be transferred to other area hospitals. >> direct hit on the hospital. we'll get a better handle on how
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much damage was done when the sun comes up. a reporter in joplin says the local walmart and home depot are gone. the tornado reportedly a mile wide, leaving a three-mile path of destruction. jamie green, photo journalist with the wichita eagle was coming back from a wedding when the storm hit. >> she had a split second to keep driving or get out of the car and take cover. she's on the phone. thanks for joining us, jamie. >> sure. >> what did you do in those moments when that tornado was bearing down on you? >> well, i was actually behind my son who was driving another car and she's spr kansas and said, worst place to be is in the car. we made the decision to get out of our cars and huddle down over her 6-year-old daughter up against a brick wall an office building, we tried to get in. we briefly thought -- we quickly thought about maybe taking a bench and putting it through the glass window but when we went around the corner to see if that was a possibility, the winds
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were whipping us so hard. we were like, it was safer in the original spot wasn't as windy. we huddled down over her daughter and stood there for probably what was two minutes or -- but felt like an eternity. >> what was the sound right? you're right to get out of the car. so many fatalities people trying to outrun a storm or get in a car. were you wearing as you were huddled over the 6-year-old daughter? >> we talked about that later on. when we remember hearing -- it was so fast. we heard a lot of wind and there were some, you know, power lines around us were snapping. we could hear lightning or maybe the snapping. >> stick with us for a second. i want to get back to your story. we're getting -- the city manager is giving a press conference right now. let's listen to this official press conference of the damage. >> the city's initial priority is to take care of the injured by completing a thorough search
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and rescue effort. in corporation with many of the area's emergency medical service personnel. we have continued this through the night and anticipate this effort will be going on for the next couple days. other cities and communities have stepped forward to help joplin during our time of distress. we have approximately 40 agencies helping with our public safety issues as well as our infrastructure needs. many public works crews have traveled to joplin to provide assistance with road clearance and other major needs. there are approximately 410 personnel members involved in this effort. we have declared a local emergency and the state has declared an emergency due to this tornado and its destruction. we have seen homes impacted as well as schools, churches, businesses, and one of our local hospitals.
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we are working closely also with our utility partners in joplin as well as the school district and medical organizations. all have been affected, but we're pulling together in our emergency operations center to ensure our citizens are safe and informed as we go through this tragedy. we continue to ask our residents for their patience during this time. we will recover and come back stronger than we are today. thank you. we'll be prepared to respond to any questions. i'm going to defer to some of the experts that i have here up with me to respond to some of the detailed questions that you might have at this point. >> any idea how many people are unaccounted for at this hour? >> no, we do not have an exact number. we're still tallying that count at this time. >> is there any specific area
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that suffered the most fatalities like any apartment building or any neighborhoods? >> i don't think you can single out any one area. the entire path of the tornado it took through town has just basically devastated the central portion of joplin. i don't think i can pick one area that's more devastated than the other. >> [ inaudible ]. >> yes. it's my understanding there were about ten semis overturned in the area of about the 11 mile-marker of interstate 44 with minimal injuries at those locations. >> fatalities of the walmart and home depot? >> i don't have any information on that at this time. >> [ inaudible ]. 57% of the -- 75% of the city damaged? >> that's inaccurate. my guess is probably about 25% to 30% of the city has sustained either major or significant
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damage. there may be some minor damage to the outlying areas, but we're pretty much within the half mile to three-quarter mile wide swath through the center of town. >> in terms of [ inaudible ]. >> right now, i could not even anticipate a number. i could -- i anticipate the number will climb. >> [ inaudible ]. >> okay. right now we've got a lot of unstable structures out there that we are trying to both search and evaluate to determine their safety. we're also trying to get some of the local utilities under control. we've had several gas throughout town that have caused fire or other dangers and we also have, of course, significant power lines down throughout town. we're trying to get those to make sure we do not have those energized where they're in any risk to folks and then just the mere amount of debris in the area, with the nails and other
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things that are out there, it's just -- it's a great safety concern for personal health and injuries. >> describe the overall emergency effort? >> well, as we said before, we have over 40 agencies, over 410 personnel. coordination is always a problem, something you have to work with. communication amongst the agencies. for many of us around here, we've drilled on this sort of thing so we know each other, we understand capabilities. we have agencies that have arrived from kansas, oklahoma, arkansas and missouri as well. >> are the areas [ inaudible ]. >> yes. we still do have some areas. we've done a very quick search through the primary impact zones throughout the city and as first daylight this morning, we are
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planning on and have in the works getting the rest of the emergency crews out there to basically do a door by door grid search of the city and those affected areas to make sure that we have accounted for everybody and help all that need the help. >> i'm sorry. i can't hear you. >> [ inaudible ]. >> right now we're spreading our patients throughout hospitals in the tri-state area. i know several have went to miami baptist in miami, oklahoma. we've sent some up to pittsburgh, kansas, a few over to carthage and several critical patients went to springfield to the hospitals in springfield. >> is there any concern about the [ inaudible ] integrity of the hospital? >> well, the hospital you see behind you, we have evacuated. there is no patients in it anymore. we will be having folks go
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through that both with st. john's and our local building experts to evaluate that structure before we do attempt or even consider reoccupying it. the other hospital in town, about six blocks from here, my understanding is, untouched. so it is in good shape. >> do you have a number yet or anybody put a number on the estimate of number of injured? >> no. there's no way to know that right now. >> [ inaudible ]. >> it's ranging from everything from minor cuts and bruises, of course, to several fatalities. >> what's the very next step in is it clearing, focusing on search and rescue? what's the very next? >> i think right now our first, you know, effort has to be towards that search and rescue and accounting for all of those folks which are missing or still out there. after that, you know, in a couple days we'll start looking at the clearing of the debris
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and handling that. that's a couple days away right now. >> how much warning people had? >> yep. >> we received warning from the national weather service of a radar indicated tornado. we also had eyes on. we turned on the sirens at that time. we had approximately 20 minutes before the first report of a tornado strike. just to give you some sort of perspective on that, normally in this area, we see from seven to ten minutes warning time. that was almost double. >> how much more difficult is it to [ inaudible ] tornado in the center of [ inaudible ]? >> well, you know, obviously it's pretty difficult. it's cut the city in half and we've had trouble getting back and forth. we've had our public works crews out to clear debris for emergency responders. they reported to us they have completed that task. we can get the emergency
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responders into those neighborhoods that are the most affected. >> [ inaudible ]. i mean it's very important that we get them out of their entrapments as quick as we can. you know, we've got to worry about getting them the basics, the food and water, and getting them out of those areas where they're trapped in. i can't put a time on it. always varies with the individual and the state of injuries. but it is time sensitive and that's why we're doing a very large push with a lot of personnel this morning, to try to get that task done. >> how many people [ inaudible ]. >> we have no idea. >> people live in this neighborhood so far? >> thousands would be about the best i could tell you. i couldn't tell you for sure just because of the widespread swath that it took through town.
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>> [ inaudible ]. >> yes. i anticipate we still do have some people trapped in structures. >> [ inaudible ] many of your emergency responders, did they themselves have their homes damaged? >> yes, several of our emergency responders homes were destroyed. we also had two fire stations that have been destroyed as well as some fire apparatus here in the city. so not only on top the other damage, we're trying to work through our own damage as well. >> what hospital [ inaudible ]? what was the action taken by the ambulance people? >> i can't -- i wasn't out at the hospital personally. i had one of my battalion chiefs out there handling that. i do know after the tornado hit and cleared and we got out here to help, we made a very hasty evacuation of a nine-story hospital within probably about
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an hour and a half, we had all the patients out moving to other facilities or other locations. it was a very nice and good coordinated effort between the hospital folks and public safety staff. >> [ inaudible ]. >> well, obviously it's difficult. you know, it's -- but it's something we face, you know, routinely. it is difficult for each of us. it's been destroyed. >> were you -- did you have family there at the time? >> luckily i did not. >> i think that's good. okay. >> thank you very much. >> public information for the city. i would like you to sign -- we
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just heard a wrap-up from joplin, missouri, officials, giving the grim update. the death toll just jumping. we thought it was 30, they say right now 89 people confirmed killed, hundreds more hurt and the thing that struck me is they're still conducting the search and rescue operations. they just said they believe there are people still trapped and that it will be days before the cleanup portion of this starts. right now it's still an active rescue as they try to make their way through this decimated city and try to find people who may still be alive and injured in buildings across town. >> you can see from the press conference that dawn is just, just beginning to break. as the sun comes up, they'll be able to assess the damage more fully. want to go back on the phone to the photo journalist from the "wichita eagle" jamie green, she was with a friend they were huddled over a 6-year-old little girl trying to -- got out of the car, trying to survive this tornado and happily fortunately they did. jamie, you took some pictures, you took some pictures of an
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injured truck. tell us about pictures you took once it was clear you were safe and this tornado had gone through? >> sure. we actually rode out the storm not very far from the st. john's hospital. maybe a quarter of a mile. and we made the decision to actually try to get out of there to try to get out of joplin because we were losing light and we wanted to get back to carthage. so i shot those pictures on the way out. and a lot of those pictures i actually shot that picture from my car and i thought that was a scene i saw twice, two pick-up trucks with both times looked like two people were injured in the back of the truck on their back with two volunteers over them. so it was a pretty hard sight to see. i'm not really sure, i have no idea how those people are. >> sign from freeman hospital,
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that is where a lot of the people were transferred out of st. john's into that hospital. 400 being treated there or have been treated there for injuries ranging from minor to more severe. i'm glad you made it out. it must be terrifying especially being with your friend's daughter 6 years old hoping you could keep hold of her. thanks for sharing your pictures. >> jamie green, photo journalist from "the wichita eagle." rob marciano joins us now. we've been talking about tornadoes all spring. this is just, we hope it's a period on the sentence of a horrible spring, but still trying to figure out the extent of the damage there. >> early similar to what went down in tuscaloosa and other parts of alabama and mississippi and georgia. the only hope i have here that it may be different is that the storms that rolled through the tuscaloosa area, came during kind of a blackout. they had earlier storms that morning and a lot didn't hear the warning. so, you know, hopefully i know 89 is a big number to swallow
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and will probably grow. >> more than 300 were killed in alabama. >> yeah. >> i'm hoping more people got the warning because power was on before the storm came through. doppler radar one of the ways we give that warning. we have this ability. this is a high resolution what we call gibson ridge radar. you can see that hook. a hook and well-defined super cell that have a tornado and it's in the backside of that where you see that hook, this doppler we pick up debris that's flying around the area. here's how the radar rolled through the afternoon and evening yesterday kind of a backwards look at it, firing off across the southeast kansas. this one rolled south and east as opposed to the last outbreak we lad that rolled from the southwest up to the northeast. let's get more forward looking as far as how many storms and how many rrps we have. 48 reports of tornadoes yesterday. do not want to exclude what happened in iowa and what happened in minneapolis. that would be the big story today if we didn't have the joplin case. 30 people injured in minneapolis
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proper with one fatality from the tornado that rolled through the area yesterday and then the day before yesterday, on saturday, kansas had some issues as well with a deadly tornado. what do we expect today? a threat for severe weather. it will be spreading towards north and east, shouldn't be as intense today, but tomorrow looks to be another rough days a across parts of the area that saw the rough weather in the past two days. if you are doing travel today, the northeast kind of status quo as far as what we expect to see, some showers, light spritzes and thunderstorms that are rolling through lexington through dayton, cincinnati, columbus, ohio. those are rough right now, but in all, for all intents and purposes they're beginning to wind down just a little bit. here's your forecast weather map later today to give you a highlight if you are pack your bags for business travel, the threat for severe weather. out towards the west looking quiet. cool and on the damp side across the pacific northwest. and trying to change up the weather pattern here in new york city has been tough to do that for the past week and a slow go as well. still on the cool side.
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it will be damp. >> that's why we called you in to fix it. fix it, marciano. >> that's ha you try to do. >> give us an answer as to why. >> nice to be here none theless. >> just say yes, dear. >> he's getting practice. newly married. we're going to take a break. we'll have all the latest headlines. it's now 49 minutes past the hour. ♪
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[ male announcer ] in 2011, at&t is at work, building up our wireless network all across america. we're adding new cell sites... increasing network capacity, and investing billions of dollars to improve your wireless network experience. from a single phone call to the most advanced data download, we're covering more people in more places than ever before in an effort to give you the best network possible. at&t. rethink possible. in an effort to give you the best network possible. ♪ ♪
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when you're resonsible for this much of the team, you need a car you can count on. ♪ los angeles police making an arrest in the attack of a giants fan. 42-year-old bryan stow was beat noon a coma after the opening day game for the l.a. dodgers. you can see him there. >> police posted more than 300 bill boards looking for the perpetrator, offered a 250,00$2 reward for information and those efforts finally paid off. thelma gutierrez has details live from l.a. think it's such a public place, eventually somebody would come forward with details on what happened. >> kiran, two and a half months later they definitely did and the arrest of one of the
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suspects is a big score for the lapd. a culmination of an intense manhunt that involved 20 detectives and according to the lapd, 6,000 hours of police work. sunday morning, 31-year-old giovanni ramirez was arrested in connection with the brutal beating of san francisco giants fan 42-year-old bryan stow. ramirez is facing charges of assault with a deadly weapon and is being held on $1 million bail. over the past two months, police have received more than 600 leads, but detectives say they got their break late last week from information they received from a law enforcement source. investigators say bryan stow, a father of two, was leaving dodgers stadium with friends back on march 31st. stow was wearing a giants shirt when ramirez and another man wearing dodger shirts began taunting them in the parking lot. as they tried to walk away, investigators say they were jumped. stow a paramedic was knocked to the ground and beaten sustained skull fractures and brain injury and had to be placed in a
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medically induced coma. the doctors still aren't sure of his prognosis. detectives are searching for the second suspect, and a woman who drove away with the two men in a light four-door sedan. a $250,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest and the conviction of the suspects. christine, kiran. >> all right. just such a sad story and to know this guy is still suffering the way he is and still in a coma, thelma gutierrez, thanks so much. mitch daniels out, looks like tim pawlenty is in. the changing face of the gop as republicans search for their presidential candidate. jim acosta with the latest on who's in and who's out ahead.
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the presidential race is wide open on the gop side. who will potentially take on the president in 2012? there is a new contender in the gop playing field and that's former minnesota governor tim
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pawlenty who announced his bid yesterday. >> jim acosta joins us live to break down the candidates for us. hi there, jim. >> good morning. this is not unexpected that tim pawlenty is jumping in the race. what is unexpected is what happened over the weekend. you heard about the rapture, a lot of conservatives think it's the end of the world mitch daniels is not running, you heard the governor of indiana decided not to run in 2012. in the end it was a family decision and it's hard to run when your wife doesn't want you to run. that was a big consideration for mitch daniels. now, tim pawlenty, his family is all system goss and he's going to have his announcement he's running for president in iowa with a town hall meeting and a release day video announcing that. let's run through a list of who is in and who is out. this race is starting to congeal, the gop field is starting to come together. who is in? well tim pawlenty is in, speaker of the house newt gingrich, former speaker is also in, ron
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paul, is in as well and herman cain announced over the weekend, he is a businessman from atlanta. out, this is a longer list which helps the field come together. mitch daniels, mike huckabee, donald trump, jeb bush, haley barbour and chris christi say they are not running in 2012 and the possibilities at this point, they're likelihoods, mitt romney former massachusetts governor and jon huntsman, former governor of utah and then balkman and palin are big maybes. bachmann leaning towards a race, sarah palin, a lot of folks don't think she is going to run. for tim pawlenty he's known for this, a slick video announcing he's running for president. he released it on youtube last night. >> we need a president who understands that our problems are deep and who has the courage to face them. president obama doesn't. i do. tomorrow, my first campaign stop will be in iowa. and that's where i'm going to begin a campaign that tells the
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american people the truth. >> and speaking of iowa, we were just in iowa last week and a lot of iowa republicans that we were talking to throughout there, christine and kiran, were talking about tim pawlenty. he has a very big presence in that state. he's one of the few candidates who's opened up a campaign office out there, so a lot of i owe wans looking to pawlenty to make noise out there. he is a neighboring republican from minnesota so he's expected to do quite well there, and he's really banking a lot of his candidacy on winning iowa, guys? >> there's another republican from minnesota when she stopped by here said -- >> michelle bachmann. >> she said she'll tell us by june. reading all the op-eds and they seem to be bemoaning the field on the sunday shows. i mean what is -- what are the knocks against pawlenty? >> well, you know, he's -- some republicans think he's a little bland, that he hasn't really inspired a lot of conservatives, you know, to get fired up and go
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out there and beat president obama next year. that might be his biggest problem. his staff is trying to tell people, if you're looking for sort of a fresh face, a guy who checks all the conservative boxes tim pawlenty is your guy. unfortunately what you have right now on the republican side is a lot of folks inside the gop looking for that flavor of the month, looking for the fresh face. that's why you have john hunts manl attracting media attention over the weekend. he meets with george and barbara bush later today. he's going to have lunch with them. he's looking to capture the bush mantle that mitch daniels might have had had he got noon this race. he was the budget director for george w. bush. a lot of the bushes are sort of looking for a fresh face and a new candidate and huntsman may be that guy. tim pawlenty is trying to say hey, wait a minute, look at me over here, i'm the real deal. but we have to wait and see if republicans agree, guys. >> jim acosta, thanks. top stories just a couple minutes away including the latest on the deadly tornado, new numbers on the death toll in
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joplin, missouri. 89 now confirmed killed and search and rescue operations are under way as the sun begins to come up. >> new doping allegations against lance armstrong. hear what a teammate says he saw lance armstrong do. two minutes to the top of the hour. ♪ ♪ [ male announcer ] with amazing innovation, driven by relentless competition, wireless puts the world at your command. ♪ [ male announcer ] in 2011, at&t is at work, building up our wireless network all across america. we're adding new cell sites... increasing network capacity, and investing billions of dollars to improve your wireless network experience.
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from a single phone call to the most advanced data download, we're covering more people in more places than ever before in an effort to give you the best network possible. at&t. rethink possible. a tornado said to be three quarters of a mile wide, tearing through the heart of joplin, missouri last night. at least 89 people are now
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confirmed dead. more than 400 others injured. a search for survivors is beginning along a six-mile path of destruction on this "american morning." >> good morning. it's monday. may 23rd. welcome to "american morning." just tragedy in the heartland as the sun comes up trying to assess the damage from a monster tornado. >> yeah. i mean six miles and three quarters of a mile wide, it destroyed 25 to 30% of joplin, missouri, by some officials estimating it. we were listening to a news conference out of joplin a few moments ago. they said at least 89 people are confirmed dead and 400 at least from one hospital alone treated for injuries. 50,000 people live in joplin. right now there is no phone service. power lines are down. you're seeing fires crop up in the area. they were concerned about the situation about fires being sparked in the area and the governor is now calling out the
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national guard and declaring a state of emergency. >> the city's main hospital, st. john's regional medical center, suffered severe damage, a direct hit some of the fire officials were saying. windows blown out. medical records and x-rays found 70 miles away from this hospital. at least 100 patients hadden to transferred. emergency crews combing through a six-mile stretch of rubble and debris overnight searching for survivors. brian todd is live in joplin. what's the latest this morning? >> christine, we're just seeing dawn break over the city, getting a real sense of the scope of this damage. it is enormous. just over here you can see some cars on top of other vehicles here, twisted wreckage of other cars littering the landscape over here. we'll pan over to st. john's regional medical center. john persons is going to go in on this. this is, as dawn breaks, we're getting a first good look at it live. you can see the facade has been torn apart. the top of the building, part of that has been sheered off. everyone has been evacuated from
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this building we're told. there is significant dangers. 89 confirmed dead, that number expected to rise. officials warning there are dangers of people going back to their homes right now. they're warning people, you may not want to try that yet. i'm joined by the two top officials of the city of joplin. city manager mark roar is here and the mayor, mike wool ston with us. thank you for joining us. mr. roar, you told me a story i want you to relate to our viewers if you can about you and the fire chief coming across a church in the minutes after this tornado hit. what happened and what did you find there? >> i was at home dressed as i am now and he called and said you need to get out here. i met him, had to park the car and walk a few blocks to where he was at. we decided to get in his vehicle and do an assessment and we were going down the road an we got hailed by someone that needed help at a church. and he and i went over and under his direction, he led an effort
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to rescue people trapped in the church. we had to remove some deceased citizens to access those people that needed help. we did that. and access those people that needed the help and transported them to the hospital. he's the real hero, fire chief daniels. >> how much decease sduds find? >> when we were there at the point of time we were there, there were at least two, and we had to remove those individuals to get at the people that needed help. >> mr. mayor, can you give us a sense as dawn breaks in the city and we're getting a look at this for the first time, what are your feelings about what has happened to your city of joplin? >> the devastation is pretty widespread through that area, the path of the tornado. we took a driving tour about 3:00 this morning and limited by the darkness you can't see very well and i expect as we get into daylight and a better view of things, it will become more evident how wide the destruction is. part of the danger we had power out in some parts of the city,
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not completely out in other parts of the city. people need to be careful ability getting into their homes or the city with the power still on, we have natural gas leaks, our water utility company has breaks in the lines so there's a danger if we do start getting some fires, that we won't have the fire equipment and the water resources to put those fires out. those things are all critical and especially i think it's important that the people if you don't have to be out on the street, stay home. if you're out looking for a family member something like that, emergency responder, been called into work central type of a business, certainly you're going to be out. we don't want to lose people with fatalities because our first responders can't get to them because of plugged up traffic. >> do you have enough help? do you need more help from communities and jurisdictions near sfb. >> we've had an overwhelming response by roughly 40 agencies throughout the area and at this point we think we probably do have enough help. now it's devising a plan to get those people out in the most essential areas first.
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>> thank you very much. mr. rohr, thank you for joining us. you have a big job ahead and we wish you luck. christine, they're just kind of getting their arms around the devastation here, trying to get a read on casualties and the number of injured. hundreds of people injured. the death toll expected to rise. again as you heard from the mayor, severe warnings for people trying to go back to their homes. there is still significant dangers, possible fires, gas leaks, downed pow wither lines all over the place. >> still an active search and recovery mode, going home to home looking for people. if you can stay away for now, it's a terrifying thing, heed their warnings. brian todd, we will be checking in with you throughout the morning. minnesota reeling because of a direct hit to minneapolis from a devastating tornado. northern minneapolis feeling the brunt of it. one person was killed, 22 others were hurt. entire blocks of homes destroyed there. >> also ambulances were lining up to try to take away victims. thousands of people without power there as well. the mayor warning everyone to stay out of the area so that
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rescue crews can reach all of the victims. we're hearing this repeated again and again, people want to return, they want to see what's left, in some cases like we're dealing with in missouri, may be trying to look for survivors but it's dangerous in the wake of severe weather like this to go back too soon. >> in the case of what's going on in joplin they're trying to clear the roads, get the heavy equipment in there so the search and rescue crews can get around a little more. they're just climbing hand over fist to get to the areas they think -- >> that's dangerous too. >> nails, glass, there's toxic fluids, and there's natural gas as well. so there's a lot of obstacles these guys have to go through and it's going to be several days of search and rescue. >> they know where some of the people are trapped so they're going one by one down their list, one of the officials said, down trying to clear the area so they can get the people out. >> right now, even as we speak there are teams out from other towns and other states that are converging on this area, search and rescue teams, with canine help will be getting there today
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to help the effort. this is turning out to be -- >> right. i know it's an unscientific thing but everybody is asking the meteorologists what's going on. this has been a particularly brutal year. >> it has. you know, this is going to turn out to be the deadliest tornado year we've had since 1953 and that's shocking considering the advances we've made in radar. this had over a 20-minute warning time. lead time. that's, you know, about the average, but compared to 30 years ago that's unheard of. but, you know, we live -- there's more people living and more congested areas and we just have horrible, horrible luck as far as the -- where the tornadoes hit in such highly populated areas this year. that's the unfortunate part. >> just bad luck. >> i think so at this point. number of tornados certainly around and it wasn't just yesterday. the day before yesterday as well. look at this map shows you over 700 reports of severe weather yesterday alone when you talk about wind and talk about hail and then the red areas, that's where the tornados dropped down or there were reports of tornadoes. 48 of them from missouri, north
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parts of northeast oklahoma, southeast kansas through iowa and, of course, that one deadly tornado in minneapolis. couple tornadoes touching down in wisconsin. this does not include yesterday which had about 20 tornadoes or saturday which had about 20 tornadoes touching down. remarkable stuff. all right. this is the radar imagery. just to show you what it looked like and how that storm blew up southeast kansas and rolling across the southeast across joplin, missouri. didn't take long to develop and didn't take very long to go through but you don't need much time for it to tear up a town like we saw there. here's the current radar. lot more quiet but a line of thunderstorms rolling across tennessee and kentucky and ohio river valley. these are not severe for the most part. a pretty wide stretch of seeing severe weather from as far east as kansas city or d.c. back through say kansas city and tomorrow, we re-set the atmosphere and i think we're going to see a rough weather day a moderate risk of seeing severe
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weather across areas that got hit over the weekend. we're not seeing a very quiet weather pattern setting up. first couple weeks much may was quiet but we're starting to get more active. >> in that area pay attention and be aware. thanks so much. after an all-out manhunt los angeles police now have a suspect in custody in connection with the brutal attack of a giants fan back on opening day. police say the 31-year-old giovanni ramirez was the, quote, primary aggressor in this vicious beating that left the victim, bryan stow n a coma. ramirez is charged with assault with a deadly weapon, being held on $1 million bail right now and meantime stow is still in critical condition. lance armstrong's former teammate is accused the cycling legend of taking performance enhancing drugs while training for the tour de france. tyler hamilton told "60 minutes" on sunday he witnessed armstrong inject banned substances a charge armstrong has denied. >> what did you actually witness?
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>> i mean, i saw it in his refrigerator, you know, i saw him inject it more than one time. >> you saw lance armstrong inject epo? >> yeah. like we all did. like i did many, many times. >> tyler hamilton turned in his gold med al after admitting to authorities he used drugs. coming up in the 8:00 hour we'll be talking about this story with peter flax, editor of "bicycling" magazine. >> it was a systemic abuse. >> he makes it sound as though this is the way cycling races. we're going to check in with the governor of missouri, jay nixon, to talk about the search and rescue, devastation and plan for the state. he activated the national guard,
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getting all the help they can get. >> the impact of an earthquake and tsunami on a company, sony expects to lose more than $3 billion this fiscal year. we'll talk about that after the break. uh, laugh lines? [ laughs ] not funny. act my age? -why? -why? -why? i love the sun. past sun goddess. every line has a story. [ female announcer ] we all age differently.
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15 minutes past the hour. back to our top story we're following the latest details out of joplin, missouri, after the tornado that hit 12 hours ago. >> this tornado reportedly up to a mile wide. hitting last night, 89 people are confirmed dead. emergency officials say up to 30% of the city is destroyed. joining us on the phone from jefferson city, the governor of missouri, jay nixon. thanks for joining us. devastation for joplin as dawn breaks, still trying to figure out what's happening next. tell me what you're learning about conditions on the ground, the latest death toll we had was 89 people and hundreds injured. is that the most recent information you have as well,
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sir in. >> yeah. we've had about 400 people treated for relatively serious injuries at freeman hospital, that doesn't count the other hospitals in the area. we have about 40 different agencies, called up the highway patrol last night. also because of the lack of communication ability there, because the wires are down and towers, we put the highway patrol command vehicle in there so we have pretty good communication among first responders, just not great communication, external to that. about 2,000 buildings with very significant damage including hospitals, schools and others. >> the challenge of going door to door, trying to run down a list of people you believe may still be trapped, be how is that process taking place this morning, governor? >> we'll begin the complete sweep. we have, for example, task force one out of columbia, missouri, search and destroy team that's been deployed across the country all the way to 9/11 at one point. the other pieces, people are injured, feel like they're out of pocket or out of home they need to go to missouri southern at the liggot and plat building.
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a shelter set up there. that's a gad place to give information. we have to sweep the entire area and use hundreds of dogs and other methods to make sure we don't miss anybody. it's mot just a complaint driven system. we have to give the area a complete search. >> it's a dangerous situation. we're looking at pictures of downed power lines, of trees on homes, we're seeing pictures of the gas fires as well, so this is a warning here, i guess, to people in the area, that the danger is not behind them. i mean this is still a very precarious situation for folks there, isn't it? >> absolutely. with the gas lines that have been broken, fires breaking out all night. we do have the good sign is we have sufficient water pressure for fire fighting. fire fighters are able to deal with those issues. we're going block by block with lack of power. it's a precarious situation. folks should allow the professionals coming in to
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assist to get a full sweep there. we stand ready to put additional guard boots on the ground if necessary. it's going to be a stark view as people see dawn rise in joplin, missouri. >> it's early as you said. we're just starting to see daybreak and just starting to assess the damage, but in your estimation what you've heard so far, did the early warning system work? was there enough time from when that alarm went off, warning of this tornado, to when people were able to seek shelter and it hit? >> they had as much as 17 minutes from the original on the one side of town and so there was some initial warning which has assisted us. the place this tornado hit, it knocked out a hospital, walmart, lowe's, high schools, it hit a very, you know, right next to that downtown area is a, you know, some residential areas, so folks i'm sure heard the sirens. the other thing, this tornado was engulfed in a significant rain and hailstorm which made
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everything difficult to hear. the bottom line is we did have that initial warning, but it was really hard to hear with the size, strength and breath of the storm. >> sounds like it hit in one of the worst possible places. >> it absolutely hit in the worst possible place in that town that you could, especially with the hospital being knocked out. it's a town that has two functioning hospitals. when you knock one of them out you have to move the people out there. it's been a long night but first responders stepping up in a strong fashion. >> a long night and certain lay long day ahead. governor jay nixon, thank you, sir. >> thank you. >> best of luck to you guys. he mentioned missouri southern, the plat building, if you have no place to go or need to find information. they're probably going to be setting up the triage areas and command centers so people who can't go back can find information. >> it's beginning to be very, very careful. still very dangerous situation. a lot of debris and still dangerous conditions. be careful, everybody. meantime we're going to be
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joined next by susan to help break down the gop presidential contenders, she will drop by and tell us what the field is beginning to look like. >> the official out by mitch daniels, the i'm in by pawlenty. which republican has the best chance to beat president obama? they don't have to be running. e-mail us, find us on facebook. it's 20 minutes past the hour. [ male announcer ] montgomery and abigail haggins were not like everyone else. because, you see, they had something most did not. they had a tree... a tree that bore the most rare and magical fruit, which they tended to, and in return, it provided for their every financial need. [ thunder rumbling ] [ wind rushing ] [ thunder crashing ]
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it's more car than electric. 23 minutes after the hour. minding your business now. the dow posed for a selloff this morning. futures pointing lower, world markets are lower this morning after ratings agencies downgraded greece and italy last week. in time for the summer travel season the price at the pump is falling. right now the national average is at $3.48 a gallon. it's the 11th consecutive decrease and analyst says we could see another drop before the memorial day weekend. sony is expecting some major hits this fiscal year. executives predict they'll lose more than $3 billion. it's a result of the devastating
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earthquake that struck japan this year and the recent hacker attacks. sony will report its official earnings on thursday. pirates take over the box office. the latest installment of "pirates of the caribbean" raked in $90 million. the comedy "brides maids" came in second bringing in about $21 million. "american morning" will be right back after this break. and with, sensuous leather interior and modern design, jaguar has once again raised the bar. learn more at
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los angeles police now making an arrest in the brutal attack of a giants fan. 42-year-old bryan stow was beaten into a coma after opening day on the -- for the l.a. dodgers. police have been looking for a suspect ever since.
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>> they have been. police put up more than 300 billboards, they offered $250,000 reward for information. looks like those efforts are paying off. thelma gutierrez has the details live from los angeles. thelma, this is such a sad story. bryan stow, a trained emt, a father going to opening day, ends up in a medically induced coma, beaten. >> yeah. you know, christine, this arrest is a huge score for the lapd. 20 detectives were assigned to the case full time and according to the lapd, 6,000 hours of police work went into this case. now early sunday morning, 31-year-old giovanni ramirez was arrested in connection with the vicious beating of san francisco giants fan 42-year-old bryan stow. ramirez is facing charges of assault with a deadly weapon and he's being held on $1 million bail. during the course of the investigat investigation, police have received 600 leads but detectives say they got their break from information they received from a law enforcement source.
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detectives say stow, a father of two, was leaving dodgers stadium with friends, stow was wearing a giants shirt and ramirez and another man were wearing dodger shirts. police say ramirez began taunting stow in the parking lot. as they tried to walk away, investigators say they were jumped. stow was knocked to the ground and beaten and sustained a brain injury and had to be placed in a medically induced coma. the doctors aren't sure of his prognosis and detectives are asking for the public's help in identifying a second suspect and a woman seen driving the men away in a light four-dour se can and a $250,000 reward being offered for the information leading to the arrest and conviction of the suspects. christine. >> thelma gutierrez, thank you for that. time for a look at our top stories, a deadly gun fight breaks out after taliban militants storm a navy base in pakistan. at least 13 personnel were killed and two u.s. surveillance aircraft destroyed.
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officials say it was the worst military attack since 2009. the taliban says the attack is revenge on the killing of osama bin laden. two american hikers jailed in iran had a chance to speak to their families yesterday. this is only the third phone call they've been allowed to make since their capture nearly two years ago. shane bauer and josh fattal told their families they launched a 17-day hunger strike after stopped from receiving letters. their families said they sounded okay. bauer and fattal were charged with espionage on the iran/iraq border back in 2009. an emergency officials in joplin, missouri, say up to 30% of the town may have been destroyed by a tornado that roared through the heart of town last night. 89 people confirmed dead. this twister reportedly a mile wide and left a six-mile path of destruction behind. in fact, we just spoke to the governor a few moments ago, jay nixon, who called the national guard and declared a state of
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emergency and said those home to home searchs will continue today. new video that captures the sheer terror of about 20 customerrs trapped in a joplin convenient store. >> the video is dark but if you listen to the people you can hear the sounds, they begin to pray as they hear the twister approaching. let's listen. >> i think we're going to do it. >> heavenly father, jesus. jesus, jesus, jesus. heavenly father. jesus, jesus, jesus. >> those voices you hear, those people thought that was the end of their life. isaac duncan shot that video. when the tornado hit he ran into
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convenience store, packed inside an industrial sized refrigerator. you can't see the pictures, you can hear the terror. >> he said if he wasn't inside the refrigerator he wouldn't be here to tell us about that experience. he joins us on the phone from carl junk, missouri. thanks for joining us under obviously very trying circumstances. what was it like to be in there? how did you make the call to get inside that refrigerator which probably turned out to be a life-saving move? >> yeah. well basically, we were just, you know, driving around town listening to the emergency broadcasts on the radio and we realized that they had said that there was a tornado about a block away from us and so we just pulled into the quickest thing that we could see which was that fast trip and when we went in, you know, the electricity was already out, there were about 20 people in the back huddled down, and everyone was kind of just deciding what to do and all of a sudden, the glass in the front of the building just got sucked
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out, completely blew out, and so my buddy, who was with me, kind of had the idea we should all like run as fast as we can and get in that cooler. so we all jumped in the cooler and it's pretty small, so everyone was pretty tight. everyone was getting kind of crushed. there was -- it was, you know, to store beer so there was broken glass everywhere. most of the people got cut pretty bad. on their knees and hands and anywhere that was touching the ground. >> around you -- when you got out of the cooler then, i mean, you could hear the tornado, the destruction around you, in the end was that convenient store still standing? >> basically the only thing that was left standing was the cooler that we were in. everything, everything around it was gone. you know, when -- it actually tore a few holes in the
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refrigerator and so we climbed out of one of the walls at the end of the refrigerator and when we crawled out, it was -- everything was just flattened. trees, houses, everything around there. >> amazing. you know, isaac, let's listen to the video and look at it one more time. it is extremely powerful. you said that you and the others there literally thought you were going to die, this was it. let's listen to what it was like to be there through these moments of terror. >> i think we're going to do it. >> jesus. heavenly father. jesus, jesus, jesus. jesus. oh heavenly father.
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jesus, jesus, jesus. >> what was it like after you -- the dust had settled and you realized that people -- you guys did, indeed, survive? what were those moments afterward like? >> well, during the whole thing, it was kind of like a surreal moment. like a lot of people there were completely, you know, obviously freaking out. me and my buddy, after we talked about it, we all kind of decided it was almost like a strangely like peaceful feeling and then after it passed, we were still sitting there for probably 30 minutes just kind of trapped, trying to figure out what we should do and so we just, you know, eventually decided after we -- the gas pumps were starting to leak all the gas so you could smell fumes really bad and we started to smell electrical fire and we decided to just -- the smartest thing would be to get out so we climbed out, tried to help the people out, but mostly, you know, people just wanted to get away from there because of the gasoline and everything.
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there's been fires around town because there's so many broken gas lines. we just wanted to get away, you know. >> isaac duncan, you are one lucky young man or very smart young man with your friend to go running into that fridge, that cooler at the convenient store, convenient store gone, cooler still standing and all of you are alive. it's going to be a tough day for you, my friend, but best of luck to you, okay. thanks for telling us your are story. >> joining us -- >> very smart. >> i mean, that's the first thing they tell you to get into some protective area. >> right. >> you would be surprised. a cooler like that is pretty sturdy but you would be surprised just getting into your bathroom, getting into the bathtub with some blankets, a mattress, pillows, what have you, how that can be life saving. you can have your entire house crumble around you and the tub is still there, the tiles still there. you may have to do some climbing out, cuts and bruises, but remarkable how many people can survive if they go into the
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bathroom. >> what kills most people in the tornado? >> the flying debris. it's what's flying around the 200 miles an hour or being crushed. if you can get an area where you have sturdy surroundings you enate two. >> the governor told us there was hail and crazy rains and wind at the time that this hit. people might not want to get out of the car because the situation is so dangerous around them but you should not be in a car. >> shouldn't be in a car. typically hail and rain don't hit at the same time that a tornado hits. different part of the storm. >> not unusual if that was all synced like that. >> it's a matter of minutes between the two. you have to know what to look for. get out of your car n a different, get somewhere down low and cover your head. >> those highway overpasses you hear people say they try to get under a overpass. >> that's not a horrible idea. get tucked up in there. we've seen people survive that as well. get out of your car, they will be tossed and flown some cases miles. >> you have a map of how this went down yesterday. >> this radar is remarkable how it blew up.
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we'll run through this real quick. the tornado itself, the radar, just really ripped through joplin after exploding across southeast kansas. this wasn't a long-lived event where it went 200, 300 mile super cells like the last ones that rolled through alabama. it was enough to have all the ingredients to explode and notice it moved to the south and effort. 48 reports of tornadoes yesterday. 20 on saturday. also a deadly tornado in kansas saturday. of course our friends in minneapolis we're thinking of you, several injured with one fatality from a tornado yesterday. one of the 48 here. here's where the action is today. this is not severe at the moment but rolling through parts of the ohio and tennessee river valleys. later on today we expect to see a threat for some severe weather if you are doing travel, there will be be spots in new york where you have to deal with drizzle, but the highlight of the area there is where we expect to see some thunderstorms. i think tomorrow, guys, we're going to re-set the atmosphere and the same areas that got hit over the weekend are going to be the bull's eye again tomorrow
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unfortunately. we'll have to watch out for that. >> rob marciano. next up, 2012 republican race, who's in, who's out, we'll talk to susan mully narey of her analysis next. losing weight clicked for me when i realized
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the gop presidential ticket here's the question, who's in, who's out? govern mitch daniel not running for president, he made that decision yesterday. >> former minnesota governor tim pawlenty plans to take on president obama and his formal announcement set for later today. republican analyst, former congresswoman susan mallnari joins us from washington. good to see you. >> nice to see you too.
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good morning. >> funny to see so much written and this has been over the past few weeks who's not running rather than who is. the latest everybody bemoaning the fact that mitch daniel said no. how viable of a candidate do you think he was and how big of a loss will this be for the gop field? >> mitch daniel enjoyed a lot of support throughout this country, particularly with people who knew and worked with him in washington, d.c. from an organizational standpoint he had built up a pretty good brand in terms of political supporters, fund-raisers, people, strategists who wanted to work for mitch daniels. when you couple that with the announcements by haley barbour and mike huckabee they're not interested in running, i can only conclude the phone in governor christie's mansion is continuing to ring off the hook today. >> you mentioned governor christy but paul ryan another one you keep hearing about. >> jeb bush. >> keep hearing about jeb bush. and these are people who have said no, this is not the year. >> and this is not unusual in a republican tradition. we have two traditions for
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republican party candidates. number one, we're never really satisfied with our field. if you go back to even ronald reagan people were complaining about the field of candidates. this is really not that unusual. but the truth is with mitch daniels breaking out and the other frontrunners leaving mitt romney out there, it does give more breathing room to governor paw len itty, perhaps encouraging governor huntsman to get in the race, waiting to see what happens with michelle bachmann and sarah palin if either one throws their hat in the ring. i think you will see a lot of movement and final movement now that it's starting to take shape over the next few weeks. it has to. >> see, that's funny, you say that because there are others who say there are plenty of time, there's plenty of time for people to announce and we see this throughout the summer. when it comes to fund-raising earlier the better. how viable is tim pawlenty? what do you think of him? >> i think he is a viable candidate. he has a great credentials as
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governor, sort of that, you know, tough talk and we need to make some difficult decisions type of governor and will be that type of presidential candidate. the fiscal responsibility message that the republicans feel so strongly about in terms of discipline, reducing the debt, deficit, building businesses and jobs he has that in his background. he is viable. the only thing from a constructive standpoint, let's take a look at it, governor mitt romney has been running for president consistently for at least the seven years. i think that has to say at this moment right now, he is the -- has to be the presumptive frontrunner. >> talk about who he would be or any of these people would be running against, the president, president obama. what is the view from insiders watching this race from the republican side? do they think that he's vulnerable or think he's unbeatable? what kind of operating assumption do you work at this part of the campaign sh. >> i think the operating assumption in this part of the campaign is we'll see. if the election were held today,
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with obviously with the taking of osama bin laden, he is getting great credibility on that aspect and shown real leadership capabilities, on the other hand he stumbled into a very vigorous debate with the jewish american community over his comments last week in his middle east speech and what this all comes down to and no one knows better than you what the economy will look like, inflation will look like and job numbers will look like as we start to roll around in the beginning of 201. i think people will say so much is going to be planning a campaign that talks about reducing the deficit, creating jobs, fiscal responsibility and showing leadership and right now that is a message that would take hold in america. >> interesting, we asked on our blog, who our viewers thought maybe would be a good viable gop contender to beat the president, vicky wrote, jeb bush, he's the same bush. people would like his middle of the road conservative views if he could get through the primary. any chance, i know that we've heard him recruited wistfully
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before, that he's going to run? >> i just read in the papers today jeb bush said again, i think this past weekend, he would not run but he is -- absolutely an incredible candidate, he is -- was a very popular governor of florida and is now continuing his work in trying to increase the capabilities of our educational system throughout the united states. he has kept his profile up on very important issues in the united states, but i think he probably feels he either needs a rest or if his name wasn't bush there would be more people who would be pushing him right now. i think he will be a viable candidate in '16. >> interesting. susan, well, we have a lot to talk about the next four years. >> we have a lot to hope for. >> thanks so much. >> thank you for having me. >> first it was the volcano that nobody could pronounce, that brought air traffic to a halt. another volcano that also is erupting. this is a more active volcano. the ash blowing toward britain and other countries in europe. air travel at risk yet again. >> that's right. that ash may reach over the u.k.
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by tonight. also smart is the new rich. how to be smart about taking on your college debt so it stays good debt and doesn't become bad debt. i have very important pointers for you seniors in high school and you seniors in college to make sure you're not making huge money mistakes. 47 minutes after the hour. ♪
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♪ ♪ when you're resonsible for this much of the team, you need a car you can count on. ♪ let's get you caught up on your headlines. live pictures of joplin,
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missouri, after the tornado that ripped through yesterday evening, right now at least 89 people are confirmed killed. emergency officials say that up to 30% of joplin may have been destroyed. search and rescue efforts are under way right now. an arrest in the brutal res under way right now. los angeles police say 31-year-old giovanni ramirez is the primary grers. officials say that he asked two other hotel staffers to join him for a drink. also reportedly made lewd comments to a flight attendant. khan is charged with the sexual assault of a made. and a volcano erupts in iceland. the cloud of ash is sweeping across europe and may force more
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cancellations. ash is expected to hit scotland tomorrow and could hit france and spain by thursday. and president obama is in ireland this morning, meeting with irish prime minister and president. president obama will also make a special visit to a small village, which his ancestors once called home. ireland is the first stop in his week-long tour of europe. and you're caught up on the day's headlines. "american morning" will be back. ♪
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53 minutes past the hour right now. u.s. defense secretary robert gates gave the commencement speech at notre dame on sunday in front of 30,000 graduates. he addressed serious issues of national security and the federal budget, but also had a couple jokes. >> not before cracking a few jokes at his own expense. >> you've worked hard to get here, your apparentparents are pride, even if their bank accounts are now empty. standing here, i'm truly humbled by the fact that i'm following six sitting united states presidents who have delivered graduation speeches here at notre dame. i'm also keenly aware you may
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have been hoping for a more entertaining choice for commencement speaker. as an observer editorial said, robert gates is not stephen colbert, nor is he bono. he has never appeared on the cover of "entertainment weekly" or been named one of "people" magazine's sexiest men alive. like i needed that reality check. >> self-deprivation also works. >> it always does. it's a hard time for these college graduates. they're graduating with more debt than any graduating class ever has. we now have more student loan debt than credit card debt for the first time in history. >> is it people having to borrow more or it costs more? >> having to borrow more, costs more, the parents don't have as much. so try to borrow less than your expected first year salary. if you're an english major, do
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not borrow $60,000 to graduate from school. you know, you've got to keep the loan value down to what you're going to get -- penny pinch your loan money. there's a loan adviser, a loan author who says you've got to live like a monk in college instead of after college. don't drop out. the minute you drop out of school, that student debt turns into bad debt. if you're a high school senior or junior, a couple things to remember. pick your major early. we do not have the luxury anymore of taking five years to get through school and changing your major three times. earn clep and ap credits. over 3,000 universities accept these credits that allow you to start accruing semester credits before you even get to college. and also -- >> that's smart. >> and try for a three-year undergrad. not a lot of schools do it, but if you're going to go on to be a doctor or law school or go on to some extended degree, try to get your undergrad in three years. in my book, i've got a lot of different schools that do do it. and they'll let you model your
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own three-year program. >> let me get this straight. college is not supposed to be a four-year party with some learning in between. >> no, not anymore. for generations it was. sorry, guys, we got to do that, but you don't get do it. >> if you're going to be in school seven or eight years, you can't afford to have a fourth year of undergrad. >> at some point, you burn out. >> of these kids, four years, they're also working. you're waiting tables, trying to study. >> that's true. but that shows a level of seriousness about a student that i think employers also like to hear. they like to hear, i worked my way through college. we're the only country in the world where college is not some place to find yourself. the rest of the world is going to college so they can eat our lunch. so we have to be a little more serious about it. >> i like that. >> actually, gates cheered me up more than christine. >> i'm sorry!
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>> you don't get a lot of bang for your buck. >> trying to save you money, folks. >> we'll take a quick break. we can make an impact for people with alzheimer's disease. as i witnessed my father's decline with alzheimer's, there's nothing really more painful to witness, and then my mother developed it and i became her principal caregiver. i became what is known as a champion for the alzheimer's association and organized a team in my mother's name which is part of a walk. be proactive, get on board, and let's all work together for a cure. join the movement. impact your world, ♪
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destruction in america's heartland. i'm christine romans. tornadoes tear up towns in minnesota and missouri. emergency officials say 89 people are confirmed dead and
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the search for survivors is now under way. there's some new sex claims against former imf chief dominick strauss khan. three more women now stepping forward, describing his unwanted attention on this "american morning." good morning. it's monday, may 23rd. a lot of news this morning. weather news this morning. another very dangerous and devastating storm overnight. >> yeah, as we speak. they're conducting search and rescues, trying to find more survivors after a tornado tore through joplin, missouri, last night. up to 30% of the town destroyed. the governor has declared a state of emergency. at least 89 people are confirmed dead at this point. >> and there's no telling how many victims may be trapped beneath the debris. brian todd joins us live from joplin where search and rescue efforts are underway. dawn has broken, we know there's 89 confirmed dead, and there's a lot of work to do for search and
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rescue workers, isn't there? >> reporter: sure is, christine, kiran. we're going to take you around the parking lot here of the st. john's regional medical center, where there's just twisted wreckage of cars everywhere. my photo journalist and i can at least point out to you some of the cars down here, the twisted, burned out wreckage of these cars. you've got some on top of each other over here to your right, my left. look at those cars on top of each other over there. and john, you can probably swing left a little bit and give them a good sense of the facade of this build and what was done here. hundreds of people were inside, we're told they got them all out. no word on casualties from this building last night. you mentioned the 89 deaths. one local official said the death toll is expected to climb. significant dangers remain. they're telling people, if you're going to try to go back to your homes, you'll want to reconsider that, because there are gas leaks, possible fires that could start, downed power lines all over the place. we're walking around some of them right now. you've got to be very careful to walk a few feet.
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we're told we may have new aerial footage of the tornado-hit area here. one thing that was an interesting comment at the news conference a short time ago was, the scope of this tornado was about a half-mile wide, to make three quarters of a mile wide in some places. and we were told that they had about a 20-minute pad of warning from when the tornado alerts first went off to when it hit. one local official says that's about double what they usually get. that might have saved some lives in this situation. but as you mentioned, 25 to 30% of this city has been completely damaged and we've got some video earlier that hopefully we'll be able to show you throughout the day of just what we're looking at. houses completely flattened, trees uprooted, power lines down all over the place, and city officials here just kind of getting their arms around this whole thing, still coming through neighborhoods, still combing through wreckage. we're told that there could be some people still trapped. they were working overnight to get people who were trapped in these structures out. they did pull some people out.
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they pulled a lot of dead bodies out, but they still say that people could be trapped under the wreckage of some of these vehicles, some of the buildings here, and some of the houses. >> brian, those xs on the cars, that means they've checked out that car and moved on to the next one. they're systemically going from structure to structure, right? >> reporter: that's exactly right. that is a premiere indication of what they've done here. xs on a lot of these cars means they've checked it out, no one's been found in there, so they're moving on to the next one. they have to do it all over the city, and that's a common practice in any disaster-hit area. whether it's a tornado, hurricane, earthquake. we covered the earthquake and tsunami in japan. that's what the search and rescuers did there, they did it to buildings there. buildings here, not many of them standing in this part of town, so we'll see what they have to do here. they're also worried about some structural damage possibly in this hospital. i see a responder on the third floor down, john, i don't know if you can see him, the third floor down, he's up there. but they are worried about
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possible structural damage at this hospital. so it's some pretty -- it's just kind of a very nervous time for responders, trying to go through that building right now. >> brian todd, thanks so much. rob marciano's here with us as well, rounding out the picture of this we're seeing some of the aerials again. and when you see what it looks like from the air, there is nothing quite like the destruction of a tornado. these previously standing structures are literally, they just look like little matchsticks scattered around. >> it is. eerily similar to what happened in alabama and mississippi with those ef-4 and 5s that tore through the areas two or three weeks ago. and the national weather service will go out there today and they'll take some aerial reconnaissance like our affiliate kotv is doing, and they'll also get experts on the ground to assess the width of this thing. right now, estimates from three quarters of a mile to a full mile in width on the ground for at least six miles, potentially more than that. judging from this damage, certainly having winds of at least 160, 170 miles per hour. >> right through the center of
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town. >> the governor of the town said a walmart, schools right in the path of this thing. >> he said it was one of the worst possible places to hit. >> just like tuscaloosa. it went through pretty much -- main street tuscaloosa where there were big box stores, mom and pop stores, student housing, and this looks just like that, and that is what's making this year so horrible, guys. over 450 fatalities now for 2011 alone. and yes, we've had an extraordinary amount of tornadoes that have touched down, an extraordinary amount of larger tornadoes as well, but they have hit populated areas like joplin, like tuscaloosa, like birmingham, and that's what's had the most damage as far as injury and death toll. okay, we'll come back to this in just a sec. i do want to include our friends up in minneapolis, parts of wisconsin, kansas. they all got hit over the weekend as well. and there was one fatality in minnesota. i want to show you the extend of
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the number of tornadoes yesterday during the outbreak. 48 of them from extreme southwestern missouri up through wisconsin and minneapolis which had 30 injuries and that one fatality. and kansas on saturday had one fatality as well. here's what's going on as far as the radar last night. there it is. blows up across southeastern kansas and then just hammers joplin and continues on a southeastern track. that's a little different than what we saw in the last outbreak. nonetheless, a massive super cell structure that had hail, had rain, and obviously had that tornado that ripped through joplin proper. and now, we've got another thunderstorm that's heading towards joplin. severe thunderstorm watch has just been posted by the storm's prediction center out of norman, oklahoma, and look at how this cell has blown up to the west of jopl joplin. at this point, the winds aren't quite as set up as they were yesterday for this to begin rotating, but that's not completely out of the question. this obviously is intensifying and we're going to be watching this very, very closely. i suspect it will hit joplin or
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just north of joplin in the next 45 minutes to 60 minutes. and so folks there are obviously going to try to find whatever cover they can and let this storm roll through. and that will take about 20 minutes to do that. >> lightning, rain, the whole nine yards? >> lightning, gusty winds, and here's the thing. with all the debris that's on the ground, if you get winds just gusting 30, 40 miles an hour, that alone is going to be a dangerous situation. >> it could fan the fires too. >> and you're just thinking about all those search and rescue crews out there trying to, a, clear debris, but also look for survivors. hopefully it there go through quickly. >> if you listen to us on satellite radio or the crews on the ground, please tell the responders to take cover in about 45 minutes because it's going to be get a little bit hairy. after an all-out manhunt, los angeles police now have a suspect in connection with the brutal attack of a giants fan back on opening day. police say 35-year-old giovanni
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ramirez is one of two assailants shown in those billboard. he's being held on $1 million bail. meantime, the victim, bryan stow, pictured here, remains in critical condition. the vicious beating left him in a coma. fresh allegations against the former head of the imf. officials say dominique strauss chaun harassed women. a flight attendant also claims he made lewd comments to her in a hotel room. he's been released on bail. in an e-mail to the funds' staff, or at least last night to others, kahn wrote of his profound sadness to have to resign under these circumstances. our president's on a whirlwind one-week trip to
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europe. his stop today is in ireland. and lance armstrong denying fresh doping claims, but dramatic claims made on "60 minutes" that seem to portray an industry, an entire sport that is tainted. more on that. and how about an exciting sport, indy 500 racing. they're revving up to play -- or to race, rather. that's coming up as well. ♪ [ male announcer ] in 2011, at&t is at work, building up our wireless network all across america. we're adding new cell sites... increasing network capacity, and investing billions of dollars to improve your wireless network experience. from a single phone call to the most advanced data download, we're covering more people in more places than ever before in an effort to give you the best network possible. at&t. rethink possible.
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another volcano erupting in iceland. so far flights across europe have not been disrupted. but airlines were told to prepare for cancellations. and the pictures are amazing, aren't they? the clouds expected to hit scotland tomorrow could hit france and spain by thursday. >> we didn't think it was going to be a big deal and international air travel shut down, people stranded at
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heathrow. we'll watch this very, very closely so it doesn't mess up your travel. president obama is getting back to his roots and traveling. he touched down in ireland. the president has already met with the irish prime minister and president and he's on his way to monogal, a village that was home to his own ancestors. >> white house correspondent brianna keilar is traveling with the president. joins us live from dublin. it's always exciting for that country when they can trace our president's roots back there. i know they did that with former president clinton as well. >> reporter: yeah, they're very happy to claim him here, kiran and christine, and the president has a lot of work to do over this week, but this is really going to be one of the lighter moments. this expected visit to monogal. and the president traces his irish roots back here. he is only 1/32 irish. while he was running for the presidency, genealogists determined that through his mother's side, if you go back to his great, great,
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great-grandfather, that he brought -- or he moved from monogal, ireland, to ohio in 1850, so what you have here is a very small community that is very excited for the president's expected visit. monogal is the tiniest of places. a village between limerick and dublin, home to just 3,000 people, who are eagerly awaiting the president's visit. >> we knew the president had an interest in his irish roots. he expressed it while he was seeking the democratic nomination that he did want to visit the little village in ireland and have a might not. >> henry healey is one of several moneygall residents claiming to have a relation to obama, which means he would be related to this man, ralph dunham. dunham's brother is obama's grandfather, who helped raise
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the president in hawaii. he insists one trademark obama featured does not come from their irish side. >> big ears did not come from my side of the family. even at an age where your ears are supposed to be the biggest in your life, my ears still aren't that big. >> reporter: back in moneygall, that's no concern to the president. they'll take the president, ears and all. they're cleaning up the town, getting the souvenirs ready, and breaking out the flags here at the pub. >> we're delighted. i would love to have a pint with the president. >> reporter: and henry healey may very well get his chance, kiran and christine, because there are only two pubs in the tiny village of moneygall, actually, you could almost say there's one and a half, because one is quite tiny. >> 1850, that is around the time where you had sons and daughters of irish families proudly making
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the trip to the united states where the outlook was unclear, but they wanted to make a name for themselves and make a fortune, and now think of how much time has passed. that's why we have so much strong ties between this country. brianna keilar, do you have an irish history? >> reporter: well, i'm a scandinavian/scottish mutt. big announcements meanwhile for the gop presidential ticket. it's official, tim pawlenty is running for president. the former minnesota governor made that announcement on an internet video late sunday night, saying his campaign will be different, because he'll be telling the american people the truth. >> meantime, indiana governor mitch daniels turns down a gop bid because of family concerns. his wife didn't want him to run. daniels is the latest in a string of prominent republicans choosing not to. >> so what do you think? which republican has the best chance to beat president obama? e-mail us at you can give us a tweet @cnnam
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or tell us what you think on facebook, meanwhile, new allegations against lance armstrong when it comes to doping. another former teammate coming out on "60 minutes," describing in pretty vivid detail what went on in the cycling world. we'll have more on that. also, one state is now banning something called lazy cakes. these are relaxation brownies -- >> relaxation brownies! come on. >> we'll tell you why they were banned and what state, coming up next. how can expedia save me even more on my hotel?
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21 minutes after the hour.
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minding your business this morning. gas prices are falling just in time for the summer travel season. right now the national average is $3.84 a gallon. the 11th decrease in a row. the international monetary fund is looking to fill its top spot. the former chief, dominique strauss-kahn, resigned from his post amid sexual assault allegations. the imf will begin accepting nominations for a new chief today. arkansas bans the popular snack lazy cakes. they're pulling the relaxation brownies off store shelves because they contain melatonin. pirates take over this weekend's box office. the latest installment of pirates of the caribbean raked in some $90 million. we could be looking at a rough day, though, on wall street this morning. dow futures are pointing sharply lower. markets around the world are selling off after ratings agencies downgraded greece and italy late last week. [ artis brown ] america is facing some tough challenges right now.
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♪ lance armstrong's former teammate is accusing the cycling legend of taking performance enhancing drugs while training for the tour de france. tyler hamilton told "60 minutes" sunday that he witnessed armstrong -- witnessed him -- inject banned substances, a charge that armstrong has repeatedly denied. >> what did you actually witness? >> i mean, i saw it in his refrigerator, you know? i saw him inject it. more than one time. >> you saw lance armstrong inject epo? >> yeah, like, we all did. like i did, many, many times. >> epo, by the way, is a banned substance, one of the ones they test for, that boosts red blood cells. also, armstrong on the cover of
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this month's "bicycling" magazine, "he's done, but is he finished?" with us right now is the editor. we've heard hamilton say, this is interesting, "like we all did," and he seemed like a reluctant interview, perhaps a reluctant witness before the grand jury. >> i think the era that lance armstrong presided over is widely thought to be a really dirty era. we did an analysis of all the people that finished in the top ten in the seven years that armstrong won, and more than 40 of those individuals have already been convicted of doping or admitted doping. so he was is greatest champion in a very dirty era. >> armstrong consistently says, i'm the most-tested athlete in the history of this sport. i've been tested hundreds of time. i've never come up dirty. he says he's clean. is that even possible in this era that we're hearing more about? >> i don't believe so. as our cover story indicates,
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you know, we're convinced that he did dope, and it seems like these confessions from people like tyler hamilton are slowly unraveling that mantra. it's one of the things that tyler said last night on "60 minutes" was that lance told him that he got a positive in the tour of switzerland 2001, and there's more of this kind of corroboration coming, which is pretty damaging to the story lance is trying -- >> he said it was cover up? >> he said that lance allegedly made the test, quote, go away, this positive test for epo. if true, is that the piece of evidence that could do him in? >> well, we'll have to wait and see. george hidd george hincapi is another person who's allegedly spoken to investigators. he's one person people feel is unassailable. and if he corroborates, it's going to be really damaging to lance armstrong's case. >> one of the things about this
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new testimony from these guys, because they have all -- >> they've been caught lying and cheating before. >> first. they were either cheating and lying about it, or they were lying -- it makes it a tough witness. >> right. individually, it's easy to pick apart an individual like tyler hammilto hamilton. the problem for lance armstrong, what tyler has said corroborates what other people have said and what other people will say. and what we say in our story, it's time to move on to the question of whether lance doped and try to tackle the more complex question of what his legacy is. he's this great anti-cancer evangelist and still is one of the greatest bike racers to ever level. >> but the bottom line is, if he supposedly doped as often as some of these witnesses say, why was he never caught? >> there's lots of people that were never caught. >> you said in the time, the people that finished in the top seven, many of them caught cheating, but not lance? >> some of it's just luck, some
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of it's smarter preparation than other people. my own feeling that even though 41 out of 70 were convicted or admitted, that the number's higher than that. >> you say there's a new era, a clean era? >> yesterday in california, at the tour of california, an american named chris horner, who everyone widely believes is clean, won that race. so i think we are in an era where a clean athlete can win at the highest level, which is really encouraging. it's important for people to get the truth about what happened. >> lance tweeted, 25 plus careers, 500 drug controls worldwide, i rest my case. he says this is over for him. that he's clean. >> i think he's going to have a tough road ahead of him. but in the barry bonds case, it seemed like an airtight case, but one juror didn't feel like he was guilty of perjury. so there's a lot of hurdles before we just wind up with an indictment or a conviction. there's a lot that can happen. >> very interesting stuff. we encourage people to read the cover story, because it's a great one.
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"bicycling" magazine editor in chief, peter flecks, thanks for being here. a base in karachi has been cleared after terrorists launched a deadly gunfight. attackers with guns and grenades stormed that compound sunday night. at least ten personnel were killed. two u.s. surveillance aircraft were destroyed. the taliban says the attack was to avenge the killing of bin laden. the two american hikers jailed in iran spoke to their families yesterday. it's only the third phone call they've been allowed to make since they were captured nearly two years ago. shane bauer and josh fattal told their families they launched a 17-day hunger strike after they were stopped from receiving letters. their families said they sounded okay. bauer and fattal were charged with espionage on the iraq/iran border back in 2009. a tornado tore through joplin, missouri, last night. at least 89 people were killed. up to 30% of the city may be destroyed. the area's main hospital, the st. john's regional medical center suffered heavy damage. all patients were evacuated to nearby facilities.
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there's also riveting new video this morning capturing the terror of about 20 people who jammed into an industrial refrigerator inside of a joplin convenience store to save their lives when that tornado hit. >> this video is pretty dark, but listen carefully. you can hear the people begin to pray and you can hear the twister growing louder around them. [ wind blowing ] >> oh, my god! >> jesus! jesus! jesus! jesus, jesus! >> we talked to the young man who shot it, isaac, and he said they really truly thought that that was it, that they were dead. he said at some point, a calm actually overcame him and his
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friend, who thought they were dead. >> they had to climb out of holes that had been torn into this walk-in cooler at this convenience store. and as they crawled out and helped other people out, there was nothing around them. the convenience store was almost destroyed, and then they began to smell the gasoline from the fuel pumps and got nervous about how dangerous that situation could be. so they're very luckily to be alive. >> cuts and bruises, but otherwise survived that. >> the tornado was so brutal, x-rays from the medical center found some 70 miles away. >> let's go live to joplin, where we're joined by betny scooti. what happened? what did you hear as this tornado slammed into town? >> reporter: good morning. well, i was thankfully safe in my basement with my family. i live about ten miles northwest of job lynn. we heard we were under tornado warnings, so we got ourselves to safety. but we were keeping track of
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what what was going on, we soon heard there was a tornado on the ground at rangeline and 7th in joplin, and rangeline is the hub of business here in joplin, where the businesses are, the restaurants, the malls, and then we started hearing about more and more damage. >> what did you see when you headed into joplin? after the tornado stopped, you decided to make your way into town. what was it like? >> reporter: well, as i was coming south, as i got closer to south joplin, there started to be debris on the roads. there were people just wandering around. there were emergency vehicles everywhere. and they were blocking off the roads. so in order to get to hear at the hospital, i had to take some side streets. there were several times i had to turn around and go back. there were huge trees laying across the road, laying across people's houses. there were roofs missing, there were people just wandering. i saw a mother and children in bathrobes just wandering up and down the road and i can't imagine what they went through. i saw a house completely engulfed in flames. >> and we're expecting more foul
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weather here, even within the hour, quite possibly. you're standing there in front of the destruction of that hotel -- or sorry, hospital. what are you seeing around you? is the weather getting bad again? >> reporter: it is starting to cloud up a little bit. we have some dark clouds. i am not sure how bad it's going to get. we all hope it's nothing like last night. >> bethany scutti, cnn i-reporter, you did the right thing, head to the basement or somewhere in your home where you can get away from it, thank you so much. >> rob marciano, heartbreaking, a mother and daughter wandering around in bathrobes. you don't know what each of those stories tells, but this is a very dangerous and scary situation in joplin. >> still very fresh. there are still going to be people wandering around looking for help, looking for loved ones. it's going to be several days of search, and hopefully, rescue, as they continue to go through the rubble that looks like it goes on for miles.
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and we'll get a firm number as far as how bad that tornado was when the survey teams go out there. but from the looks of it, certainly had winds of 160 if not 170 miles per hour, ef-4ish or higher. you heard our i-reporter say it looks ominous, but not nearly as bad as last night. this is a thunderstorm that is severe. it's heading through southeast kansas, towards joplin. and a severe thunderstorm warning out for it. likely be in the joplin area, probably about 30, 40 minutes. and you're beginning to have heavier rain, so hail, and gusty winds, probably not a tornado, but gusty winds will blow around the debris. this will be a dangerous situation, winds gusting 30, 40, maybe 50 miles an hour with this cell. all right, moving along to our other source, give you an idea of exactly what we're looking at for the number of thunderstorms we expect today. eastern parts of the country in
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and under the gun, from d.c. to richmond, back through oklahoma city. a slight risk of seeing some thunderstorms develop today across that cold front. tomorrow, we kind of reset things, and we've got another disturbance that's rolling out of the mountains. this is the time of year in may where tornado alley is really the hot spot. that's what we saw yesterday and over the weekend and that's what i think we're going to see tomorrow. moderate risk of seeing some thunderstorms that could become severe and maybe some tornadoes tomorrow. eastern parts of oklahoma, kansas, and notice southwest missouri is under the gun there. so a little thunderstorm that's going to roll through joplin in the next 45 minutes to 2 hours, and tomorrow looks like we could get some more thunderstorms. so usually a lot of times when these things roll through, we have a little bit of calm and clear weather for folks to start cleaning up and rescuing folks but they're going to have to be dodging other thunderstorms, i think. >> all right. well at least advance warning, hopefully, and hopefully it will pass through quickly. >> yeah, this one will.
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>> rob marcianmarciano, thank y much. meanwhile, we've been asking you, who do you think in the gop field could beat the president potentially in 2012? we have an update on who's in, who's out, and other republicans who might choose to jump in, coming up. 38 minutes past the hour.
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♪ somebody to love ♪ i don't need nothing else okay. so the presidential race wide open for republicans. who's going to take on president obama in 2012? former minnesota governor, tim pawlenty, he says he's up for the challenge. he announced his bid on an internet video late last night. so pawlenty's in. >> mitch daniel's out, i guess. but we'll show you a little bit
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more. who's in and who's out. we're talking about former speaker of the house, newt gingrich. he announced his bid last week. then you have congressman ron paul, the perennial favorite for many. and also in the running, ceo herman cain. >> indiana governor mitch daniels bowed out of the race because of family concerns. and mitch daniel was seen as a party favorite. also turning down bids, former arkansas governor, mike huckabee. donald trump, in case you were under a rock, he bowed out last week. former florida governor jeb bush has also said no, as well as mississippi governor haley barbour, and new jersey governor kris christie says he is now running. he says he'd rather stay close to home in new jersey and do his business there. >> but we have some maybes as well. who is possible? with this is interesting that we're talking about mitt romney as possible, since he is, by all accounts, at least in the
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polling, considered the front-runner. >> susan molinari says he's been running for seven years. >> and making money running for seven years, or earning money for his war chest. and michele bachmann, the congresswoman out of minnesota has said to us here on this program, she'll let us know by june. >> also, john huntsman, a possible candidate as well. and don't rule out former alaska governor sarah palin, who says she has a fire in her belly for a 2012 presidential run, but hasn't officially declared yet. what kand do you think has the best chance for beating president obama? >> we'll start with our tweets and facebook responses. on our blog, bradley moses writes, the only one that has a chance is governor bobby jindal of louisiana. he's the one. >> and he's not on the list, in or out. >> "ron paul in 2012. he's the real deal and the true answer to america's problems." >> steve writes in, "governor
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chris christie is the man, if only he would run. americans are ready for a straight shooter who isn't afraid to tell it like it is and will not shy away from taking on special interests." >> and "i'm a republican, but i don't see any candidate. president obama is a common man and hard to beat." >> thanks for weighing in on our question of the day. and you know the wacky hat from the royal wedding, it was princess beatrice's wacky fascinator selling for big bucks. we'll tell you how much it fetched at auction. >> and speaking of fast times and big bucks, the indy 500 revving up. danica patrick, franchitti and dario castroneves will be here.
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46 minutes past the hour. time for a look at your headlines this morning. at least 89 people are dead and up to 30% of joplin, missouri, may be destroyed after a tornado tore through the heart of the city last night. the governor has declared a state of emergency. search and rescue efforts are under way as we speak, looking for more survivors. an arrest in the brutal attack of a giants fan that
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happened at the dodgers' opening game. los angeles police say 31-year-old giovanni ramirez was the primary aggressor in the beating that left victim bryan stow in a coma. ramirez is being held on $1 million bail. new sex claims against former imf chief dominique strauss-kahn. officials say he invited two hotel staffers to have drinks with him, that he also made lewd comments to a flight attendant. kahn is charged with the sexual assault of a made at a new york hotel last weekend. president obama is in ireland. the president will also make a special visit to a small village where his ancestors hail from. ireland is the first stop in his week-long tour of europe. taking a look at the markets set to open in 45 minutes and we could be in for a big sell-off today. futures sharply lower after ratings agencies downgraded greece and italy late last week. and remember princess beatrice's wacky hat from the
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royal wedding? well, it sold on ebay for $130,000. the money will be donated to two children's charities. and now you're caught up on the day's headlines. "american morning" will be back after a quick break. ow#ç3
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♪ well, the field is set now for next weekend's running of the indianapolis 500. it will be the 100th anniversary of the big race. >> here to talk about a wild weekend of qualifying and the upcoming big event, three of the best drivers in the business. danica patrick, defending champion, dario fran kechittfra
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dare castroneves. >> we actually, if it makes you feel better, talked more about "dancing with the stars". >> and his baby. >> that's correct. let me tell you, she's getting bigger. and for the time when i was actually practicing, she's over there in indianapolis. i walk up in the apartment, and she's like with papa -- oh, my! that's it. that's it! >> did you think that when she was waking you up early in the morning, and you're like, no, no more papa. go to mama. >> now, you say you have a drama-filled weekend. >> i did. we practiced all week, practice was going good. qualifying day came and all of a sudden, where'd the speed go. and we didn't qualify in the first day. had to qualify yesterday. the rain kept coming and i almost didn't think i was going to get to run, to make it into the field. unfortunately, a couple of my
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teammates didn't make it into the race and it was -- >> close. >> yeah. not a situation anyone anticipated to be in. that's for sure. >> you also had a little bit of drama too, dario, because you ran out of gas. you won last year. you ran out of gas, which means you start nine in row three rather than the pole position. what happened? >> well, i didn't think we were going to get the pole. i thought my teammate was going to get the pole, but he ran out with one car to go, i ran out with a whole lap to go. it was a whole miscommunication, but i was pretty angry afterwards. that was a bad feeling, qualifying at indy is so crazy and you're so in the limit and there's so much tension and so much riding on it. and to make a mistake like that was pretty bad. >> i already told him, i have plenty of gas. shell, right there, sponsor me, i can get you a great promotion. you can get free fuel. >> it's 4 bucks a gallon right now, you know? >> you were trying to conservative. how big does the difference make. you've got 32 positions and try
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to be in the front row, obviously. can you make it up? how hard is it? >> you can make it up, but it takes a long time in the race, because the turbulence these cars produce, they produce a hole in the air. so the car following, you don't have as much grip. you can't make those moves very quickly. ninth to first might take a while. last year i started on the outside of the front row, helio was on the pole. it took two corners. >> i think for me, it's going to be hard to decide if i want to have a chance at the end to be able to be in a position, to maybe win the race, you kind of immediate to be fast, which means you need to have as little down force as you can tolerate, but i'm starting so far back that i'm going to need the down force to be able to work my way up there. so it's going to be a guessing game as to where you need to be for it. >> so tell us psychologically what this week is going to be like for you guys. first of all, it's the 100th anniversary, so it's a big deal. it's always a big deal, anyway.
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but what do you do to prepare? >> we, unfortunately, haven't done a lot of race running, because we've been worrying about qualifying. there's been a lot of rain. i think a lot of us feel like we would have liked to do more race running. but we'll look back on history, see the setup that was good for the race, but actually this week, it's a lot of media. >> at this point, you're going into the race, we have one more practice, which is friday. >> one hour, though. >> one hour, better than nothing. so for those that didn't have a chance to, you know, practice with the race car and things like that, which is the same for everyone, you're going to have the last minute, you know, to make sure everything's fine. but again, it's three hours of a race, everything can happen. >> it's exciting. >> it's big-time exciting. >> and also, how about the personal relationship. it's really interesting. you guys are all, you know, young and attractive and fun. do you guys all hang out together when you're not racing? >> last night we sat and had a beer together. >> yeah, we did.
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>> i feneeded it, actually. >> we all did after yesterday. >> it's a funny relationship, out of the car, most of us are pretty good friends. we get in the car and -- >> that's it. >> you're supposed to compete. >> in the car, yeah -- >> it's like putting on your armor, i bet. >> the difference of the two is incredible, the in-car competition and the out of -- >> we're among friends, but everyone wants to win the race. and there is only one winner. at the end of the day, you've just got to do your best and, obviously, sometimes we do have some issues, and sit down, talk, do you have anything against me, or do you see me or something like that? >> a couple of those conversations. >> it comes down to respecting each other. you know, racing each other hard, but giving each other the respect you're not going to do something that you wouldn't want done to you. >> this year, who are you most afraid to see in your rearview mirror coming up fast? >> oh, boy, my teammate, scott
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dixon. he's had a glint in his eye all month. >> i don't want to see the leader. i'm starting so far back, i don't want to see the leader. i want to get to that first yellow, make up some spots, maybe, and get myself up further up. >> i'm not looking behind. i'm going to look forward. >> you're going for your fourth indy title. what would it feel like to win it on the 100th anniversary? >> it was be incredible. i'm honored to be in this position. like i said, one of my heroes, which is rick mears, to finish first, first you've got to finish. that's my mentality to go out there. and it will be an incredible achievement to join incredible drivers. >> al jr. told me a couple years ago, use the first half of the race to get to the last half of the race, and it sounds really obvious and simple and not very descriptive, but it's true. use that first half, learn your car, see how the track is changing, and make the right changes for the end and go for it. >> that's a metaphor for a lot
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of thing. >> it really is. >> put that on a bumper sticker. >> like at indy, a gust of wind or the temperature changing, all these things can change the way your car, you'll think, oh, we're looking good, then the wind will change direction and you're struggling to keep up. >> i remember a couple years ago, i went with a setup that i was anticipating what would work at the end of the year, i had to use the first half just to kind of stay in the game, and then once the last 75 laps came, the car came alive and it was good at the end. >> you guys, obviously, are pros and you know what you're doing. you're the defending champ. we wish you the best of luck. it will be a fun weekend. not for you guys -- >> it is. >> if your teammates want to take you out the night before for shots, just say no. >> thanks, guys. 56 minutes past the hour 7. building up our wireless network all across america. we're adding new cell sites... increasing network capacity, and investing billions of dollars to improve your wireless network experience.
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let's see you fly now! [ laughs ] look, more frequent flyer red tape. not on my watch. let that family fly! [ tires screech ] i just wanted to use miles to take my family on vacation, but -- let me guess -- restrictions through the roof. that's right. not anymore. rapid rewards has your back. [ male announcer ] join rapid rewards and enjoy unlimited reward seats, no blackout dates, and no red tape. ♪ ♪ take me out to the ball game ♪ take me out >> sometimes you can't make this stuff up. this is a shot of boston, massachusetts, where it's 52 degrees right now and cloudy. a little bit later, they're looking at showers, but what a day it was yesterday at the game. >> the sun is shining on cnn anchor john king. in the right place, at the right


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