tv CNN Newsroom CNN June 27, 2011 10:00am-12:00pm PDT
so far. shou we check out? >> you don't have to put these on. i just have to take the gun and i scan it and then i take your stop and shop card and i swipe it. everything rings up. it's very easy. >> all you have to do is learn how to use the gadget. it's pretty nifty. it didn't take me that long to figure out. a couple glitches. but the truth is 11% of this store's 20,000 annual customers a week use the scan it program. that's good for the customer and good for the store. if your choice didn't win, you want to check out the runners up, i'll have links on my page at facebook.com suzanne. >> 29 days into the first degree murder trial of casey anthony in florida. we now know casey anthony is competent to be there. that's one verdict we weren't expecting only because it wasn't in question until saturday, when
anthony's lawyers cast doubt on her ability to understand the charges and aid in her own defense. none of this came out until judge bell vin perry took the bench this morning. >> the court ordered that the defendant to be examined by three psychologists to determine her competency to proceed. based upon the reports that the court has reviewed, the court will find that the defendant is competent to continue to proceed. >> anthony's accused of killing her 2-year-old daughter caylee in 2008 and could go to death row if convicted. i want to bring in holley hues. i want to ask you about the timing of this competency question. what is that about? >> it is highly unusual, rani. this case is going to be taught in law schools for years because
so many things have happened here that are unusual. i have never seen, in all the cases i've tried, and all the high profile cases i've covered, a time where in the middle of trial, suddenly the defendant becomes incompetent. it's highly unusual, and i think it's incredibly curious that it happened right after that huge emotional breakdown we saw her have on friday. you'll remember her brother lee testified. he was very emotional. she was extremely emotional. you can tell there was some kind of connection going on there. i have to wonder, is she finally realizing what this defense is doing to her family and was she having a little bit of guilt. did she go into the lawyers and say let's not accuse them of month molestation. >> it might have hit her is what you're saying. >> yeah. >> is this claim different from insani insanity? >> that's correct. this is absolutely not. the insanity rule is something
handed down by the supreme court called the mcnaughton rule. it's a test that says do you know the difference between right and wrong. can you appreciate the nature of your actions. of course, at this point, you know, the prosecution is saying she wrapped up this body, she hid it, she concealed it, she buried it out in the woods. she clearly knew her actions were wrong or she would have left the body lying out. not insanity. this is competency to stand trial. what they're asking is does she have the ability to understand what's happening in the courtroom at this point in time and can she assist her attorneys in aiding them in putting together her case. is she able to hear the testimony and say to them it didn't happen that way, you need to ask this question. >> after she was examined by three experts, they determined she was competent. does the jury know anything about this? will this affect her at all? >> no, the jury will absolutely not know anything about this. they were told something has arisen. you all have saturday off, go
back to the hotel and have a good time at the pool. they were told sorry, it's going to be longer. you don't want it to prejudice her. you don't want the jury to think what myself and according to the facebook folks are thinking, hey, maybe she's starting to feel guilty about this whole defense. >> after all that, the defense back at it today. >> yes. >> pretty harsh in terms of looking at what the prosecution had put on the table in terms of the evidence. what stood out for you today in terms of attacking the evidence? >> i think that jose baez did a good job and it pains me to say that, because i'm not a fan, i think that's clear. but he did a really good job with lead detective yuri medical itc melich. when he testified last friday, you misspoechlkt you told the jury something untrue. of course the detective has to say that's correct.
i gave them bad information. the jury is thinking wow, in a high profile, death penalty case, the lead detective is giving us bad info. it kind of went downhill from there. jose went back and said did you pull george anthony's cell phone records. how come you didn't investigate kronk. he went through a list of friends where the cell phone records were pulled. you investigated all these people who were childhood friends but you didn't go after the guy who found the body or george, who was at home the little girl went missing. >> raising doubt. we're going to continue this conversation in our next hour. stick around. sound effect comes from a three term member of congress who doesn't like government but wants to be president. michele bachmann announced her 2012 campaign, not in minnesota where she represents the 6th district but in iowa, specifically, waterloo, iowa. she pays her respects to the founders while spurning the
state of the union. >> government thinks it knows better how to spend our money. government thinks they know better how to make a better life for us. they think they create jobs. they even think they can make us healthier but that's not the case. we have to recapture the founder's vision of a constitutionally conservative government if we are to secure the promise for the future. >> iowa, of course, aside from being michele bachmann's birth place is the site of the first presidential nominate iing conference. she is tied for the lead among gop contenders. the supreme court has thrown out a california law about selling violent video games to children. the rule violates first amendment rights. the ruling is a victory for the video gaming industry which argued the voluntary rating system is a sufficient warning for parents. in another closely watched case, the supreme court rejected
an arizona campaign finance law. the court ruled that the state can't provide any extra funding to candidates who have been outspent by privately funded opponents or independent political groups. a 5-4 vote violated free speech rights. the court said it will hear arguments on the fcc's rights to regulate profanity and sexual content on broadcast television. we'll talk more about this coming up later this hour. the international criminal court issued a warrant for the arrest of moammar gadhafi. the charge is crimes against humanity, including murder and persecution. the court issued arrest warrants for one of gadhafi's sons and the head of intelligence. gadhafi has used widespread and system attacks. libya is not expected to honor
the warrants. a stunning twist in the appeal trial of amanda knox. the testimony that even shocked amanda knox herself. the latest from inside the italian court. next. so i was the guy who was never going to have the heart attack. i thought i was invincible. i'm on an aspirin regimen now because i never want to feel that helplessness again. [ male announcer ] be sure to talk to your doctor before you begin an aspirin regimen. talk to your doctor, and take care of what you have to take care of.
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. two years after being convicted in italy, amanda knox, convicted of the murder of roommate takes an unexpected turn today. knox said she was shocked to hear what this man said. rudy guede is a key player. guede is the third person who was found guilty of murdering meredith kercher, who was found
dead with her throat slit. fast forward to today, knox insists she is innocent. dan, guede was called as a witness to testify about a statement he had made that knox and her ex-boyfriend were not involved but his testimony turns out, didn't exactly go as the defense was expecting. what happened? >> reporter: that's right. they were hoping, i think, that rudy guede, who is one of the co-accused, what sort of crack under cross examination by knox's defense lawyers. in fact, the very opposite thing happened. for the first time, he directly said he thought amanda knox and her co-accused were guilty of meredith kercher's murder which is something he implied in previous testimony but nothing he explicitly said. in previous hearings, we had been told he had sort of
confessed to fellow prison inmates that in fact knox wasn't there on the night of the murder. well, today he flatly denied that, saying he never spoke about the case in prison. it was a day of further dramatic twists in this long-running courtroom saga. almost dramatic because amanda knox herself gave testimony or gave a statement anyway in court, in which, as you say, she says she was shocked by guede's evidence. she said he knew we weren't in the house. she said she didn't know what really happened and she expressed regret that she herself couldn't talk to guede and couldn't question him herself to find out what happened. i think they were pinning hope on guede being tripped up in the cross examination. in the end, he stuck firmly to what he's been saying all along, that he didn't do it and by implication, the other two did. >> what was the reaction, dan, by amanda knox's family. what have her parents said about
this? >> well, i spoke to her mother immediately after guede had given evidence, and she said that guede was continuing to lie about her daughter, amanda knox, as she said she was sort of devastated to see her daughter in such pain, because at one point during amanda knox's sort of statement, her voice faltered as if she was almost going to cry. she sort of regained her composure, but clearly that was very emotional also for her mother, who was just sitting a couple of feet behind her in the row behind her in the courthouse there. obviously, it is taking a massive toll on the family at large and on amanda knox. when she came into the courtroom, she was taking deep breaths, showing how nervous she was. you could see her lawyers short of putting their arm around her and trying to reassure her. in the end, it wasn't what she or her defense lawyers wanted to hear. now they will look into new
investigation into the forensic evidence which may give them what they're looking for, that they win this appeal and she is set free. >> they are retesting the knife and some other evidence that they had used to convict knox. any word yet on the results of that? >> not yet, no. that's something that will be gone into in quite a lot of depth over the next few weeks. this appeal may last until the end of september. there's quite a long way to run yet, but it seems now that the defense's main hopes will be pinned on this dna and forensic evidence, as you said, retesting alleged samples. dna samples on the knife supposedly used to kill kercher on the night in 2007. >> dan rivers reporting for us. when we come back, amanda knox's father is going to join us live with his reaction. we'll be right back. [ female announcer ] now at red lobster
. just turning 17 minutes past the hour. time to check in on top stories we're following. in minot, north dakota, the worst of the flooding is over now that the souris river has stopped flooding. everywhere you look, you see streets and homes almost completely submerged. more than 3,000 homes affected. three recovery centers opened today. two in minot and one in bismarck. two nuclear power plants sit near the flooding missouri river. according to reports, things are in control. authorities have put in
floodgates to protect the facilities. the owner said key areas of the fast is not in danger of being flooded. they set up a flood rumor control page to assure the public there has been no radioactivity released from the plant. the jury has reached a verdict in the trial of illinois governor rod blagojevich. employing vi blagojevich has denied any intention of bribery. stay with us. we're expecting to hear the verdi verdict. a shadowy group is disbanding. it claims to be the group behind a series of recent hacking attacks against government and comp rat targets including the cia website. it claims responsibility for posting a fake story on the pbs website, falsely reporting the rapper due patupak is still ali.
joining me now, amanda knox's father, curt knox joins me from seattle. i appreciate you coming on. we've been talking about your daughter's trial. we're glad to be able to get you on the show today. we covered what happened in court there about this rudy guede who was supposed to say that your daughter was not involved in the murder of her roommate, but in fact he said exactly the opposite. first, your reaction to what happened in court. >> well, first of all, within court today, he actually was answering questions specific to other inmates suggesting he confided in him that amanda was not there. he did not testify specific to whether amanda was there at the crime scene. in fact, it was also talked about today when police were
monitoring him on skype at the very beginning of this process, that the police asked him a specific question, and he actually said amanda was not there at the scene of the crime. >> but certainly this was not you and your wife and daughter had hoped would come out in court. you would hope he would say he knew for sure she was not there. how do you feel about what did go down? >> well, it's very disappointing that he will not own up to his responsibility in this particular crime. we're actually looking forward to the independent forensic expert report that's actually due out on thursday of this week, which we believe is really going to be the turning point to help bring amanda home. >> and i want to ask you, we had spoken to our reporter, dan rivers who was in the courtroom in italy for us. he described amanda as looking a bit nervous, even having some trouble breathing. can you give us an idea of how
your daughter has been holding up over the years? >> well, you know, she has her ups and downs. i was able to talk to her on saturday. this particular week is a very kind of crucial time as it relates to her appeal. she's anxious, but she's also very focused and, you know, is looking forward to hopefully a positive result and being allowed to come home. >> so, how often do you get a chance to speak with her? >> well, we get a ten minute phone call every saturday, so we're allowed to talk to her when we're not actually in italy, so that's as close as we come with the exception of letters and so forth. >> i believe she's facing, you can correct me if i am wrong, that it's 27 years, if she does go to prison for this. does she realize what's at stake here? >> well, she's actually -- her current length of time is 26
years. she's actually been in prison for three and a half years now for something she didn't do. she does really realize that this is a huge mistake, and she's hopefully looking forward to it being corrected and being allowed to come home. >> she has said that she doesn't remember what happened that night. can you give us an idea? is there a defense here? what does she say she does remember? >> well, she clearly says that she remembers that she stayed at raffaele's house. they had met each other and only been together for approximately six days and to come across what the theory of a sex crime, you know, involving an orgy with somebody you met for six days is ludicrous. >> i know guede was allowed to have express trial, that phase of his punishment. he got 16 years.
he may only end up serving seven. do you think there's some kind of deal underway here? >> italy has a different process than the united states. he was originally given 30 years in what they refer to as the fast track trial. upon his appeal, that reduced to 16. with their parole process, it is very possible that he will be out in seven years. i can't say for sure if there's a deal going on, but everything that we have experienced as it relates to the prosecution's process has been very, very different than what you would expect in the united states. >> so what is the next step then? i know that they're testing the forensic evidence again. is that the next step for you? and what after that for your family? >> well, you know, as i mentioned, the independent forensic experts are going to submit a report related to the knife and the bra clasp which are two key components that are
very, very questionable, and that report is going to be due on thursday of this week. so we're hopefully going to hear good news that it's incompatible to amanda and it's not useful. >> just remind our viewers, if you would, her dna had been found on the knife, is that correct? can you remind us of the evidence that they have against your daughter? >> yes. essentially, this knife that they're referring to as the murder weapon was actually found within raffaele sollecito's apartment. it was in the kitchen drawer and amanda's dna was on the handle because she did cook at raffaele's house. they're saying that there is dna material, not blood, but dna material that is so minuscule that by protocol standards, in dna testing, you're supposed to test things twice.
they were only able to test it once. in the united states, you have to have a true identification, where in italy, they say compatible or incompatible. once again, very different expectations. >> curt knox, we certainly appreciate you coming on. when this does come down, we hope you come on again and bring us up to date. whitey bulger behind bars. locked up but not forgotten in his boston neighborhood. we'll take a look at his influence and infamy, with crime novels "gone baby gone."
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the question. friday he asked for a public defender but prosecutors believe he can hire his own attorney. the judge wants an answer today so the case can move forward. bulger's brother could possibly post bail and pay for his brother's defense. bulger is in the g unit. whitey bulger's capture last week stirred up mixed memories of his brutal years. joining us is daniel mahane. does this close the book on the bulger years in boston, do you think? >> i think it closes the book on bulger. i'm not sure it closes the book on crime. it certainly doesn't close the book on questions of collusion with the fbi. i think that's still something that troubles a lot of people. >> for people who don't know about whitey bulger's influence in boston, give us an idea. you know.
how big of a deal was he? how big was he there? >> he was big for -- he was big for the irish mob. he was big for the winter hill gang, big for south boston. and then as he used the fbi to move out his rivals in the italian mob, he got bibber and bigger and bigger. >> what do you think of the coverage that his case has gotten since he was picked up in california? do you think that we, as a country, overclamorize gangsters? >> i think sometimes we do. sometimes we don't. in this case, i don't think there's anything glamorous about the bulger case. you have to look at, he left a lot of innocent bodies in his wake. we're not talking about other crime figures. we're talking about the truck driver, michael donahue, a completely innocent human being who was killed, roger wheeler in oklahoma, an innocent businessman who was killed. i don't want that to get lost in
looking at this idea of romantic grandeur when you look at criminals. >> how do you think he's going to be remembered in the boston area? >> it depends upon who you ask. >> give me an idea. >> well, i think there are people who believe in the legend. they want to believe he was a protecter of his neighborhood, that he was a type of a robin hood. i think there are other people who look at the innocent victims he left behind. they look at somebody who pumped his own housing projects with heroin. who was essentially a rat for the fbi. i mean, that's another legacy. >> how does he think he is looking at all of this? he's 81 years old. he's an old guy. i guess maybe he thought he would never be caught. he was living pretty well on the pacific coast on the ocean in california. how do you think he's viewed at what happens here? is he laughing at the police here? >> i think he is. i think he is. i think the only thing i could
ever say in bulger's defense is that he's an extremely shrewd individual. he got everybody to do his bidding. at the end of day, he won. he is making jokes in court. >> appreciate your time. thank you very much. up next, the los angeles dodgers file for bankruptcy. so what does that mean for the team and the fans? we'll tell you. (screams) when an investment lacks discipline, it's never this obvious. introducing investment discipline etfs from russell. visit russelletfs.com r a prospectus, containing the investment objectives, risks, charges, expenses and other information. read and consider it carefully before investing.
upswing. alison kosik joins me from new york. help me understand this. isn't an increase in shoplifting believed to be a sign of tough economic times? >> you know, that's what you would think. that's what i thought too. the numbers when you look at them say the opposite. you look back to 2010, after the recession, retailers say they lost $37 billion in sales because of theft. like shoplifting, that's up almost $4 billion. if you compare that to 2009, during the heart of the recession, last year, by the way, more than 40% of retail losses were inside jobs, i'm talking about employees stealing from their employers. here's the thinking on why numbers went up. during recession, retail employees are more afraid of being caught and fired. but when the economy improves and the chance of finding another job improves, employees take on more risk. let's talk about the
dodgers. what's going on with them? they filed for bankruptcy protection. what does this mean for the fans and the future of the season? >> exactly, so what's going to happen is the team is going to continue operating while it goes through this process of reorganizing. these financial troubles have really been the hallmark of the entire season for the dodgers. quite a soap opera it's been with the very public divorce of its owners. apparently getting more attention than the team's play on the field. it may be hurting attendance because the average attendance is down by about 8,000 fans if you compare to last season. the fact is the team owes a lot of money to players. it's top four creditors are either former players like manny ramirez, andrew jones, riroki kuroda. >> what about ticket prices? might they change? maybe cost fans more or less? >> if anything, fans can wind up
expecting to get good deals on tickets. they're offering $5 tickets for kids. keep in mind, this is less because of the bankruptcy and more because the team isn't playing too well at this point. >> alison kosik at the new york stock exchange. the casey anthony trial is back on today after an abrupt recess was called on saturday. casey was examined by three psychologists after her defense team filed a motion to determine her competency to proceed. all three found her competent. these are live pictures of the trial back in session in orlando, florida. it was implied but not expressly stated that the motion was the reason for the abrupt recess on saturday. jurors heard testimony from yuri melich, the lead investigator and dr. furton.
a there is no immediate threat to the facility and evacuations are voluntary said the forestry division. the fire was burning within a mile of the lab late yesterday. special crews have been dispatched to protect the nuclear research facility. 11,000 people work there. officials say all radioactive and hazard material is accounted for and protected. talk about a close call. an asteroid about the size of a house passed within 8,000 miles of earth today, a distance inside the orbits of many communications and spy satellites. nasa says there was never any risk of impact but it was close enough for earth's gravity to alter the trajectory. even if it hit the atmosphere, the asteroid would have probably broken up and burned before reaching the surface. you can't yell fire in a crowded theater, but video games
if you don't want your kids to buy violent video games you have to stop them yourself. a law that would have intervened was blown out of the water by the highest court in the land. senior legal analyst jeffrey toobin joins us on the phone to tell us more about the ruling. are you surprised the court came down on the side of free expression? >> reporter: not really. this court is divided on many issues, but on the issue of free speech, it has been pretty united in its very protective approach to anything regarding freedom of speech.
this was a 7-2. it wasn't very close. the court said this wasn't a hard case. this was a case about what they characterized as art. people may not like it, but this was a kind of art and in the most entertaining part of justice scalia's opinion, he said a lot of this is very violent and we don't want to get in the censorship of it. >> what about the makeup of this justice system? >> they are togethermore often than you think. 40% of the supreme court's decisions every year are unanimous. what makes this case unusual is the two discenters were clarence thomas who is the most conservative justice and steve
bryor. the broad middle of the court found this case certainly one that was really much more about censorship than it was about children, particularly since there was no real proof that video games caused any direct harm on the kids who played with them. >> the court also handed down one other big ruling before heading off on summer break. tell us about this campaign finance case from arizona. >> i think in the long run, that's actually going to be a much more important case. this is a case that really continues the citizens united line of thought. i'm sure many people remember the case from last year where they said that corporations had a right to free speech and couldn't be regulated. basically what the court appears to be doing is looking at any sort of campaign finance regulation, in this case, a law that was supposed to even up the playing field between rich
candidates and poor candidates in arizona. they said it's unconstitutional. any sort of limit on spending by candidates, on fundraising by candidates seem to be in serious jeopardy. if that trend continues, it can really transform american politics. >> jeffrey tube within the latest. thank you. a country in chaos, the whereabouts of his president unclear. we'll hear from nick robertson, the only rewestern reporter in yemen.
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globe trekking begins with the arrest of moammar gadhafi. the hague issued the warrants today, accusing gadhafi for crimes against humanity. issued similar warrants against gadhafi's son and brother-in-law. gadhafi has ruled libya since 1969. his government is expected to ignore the warrants. to yemen which remains in a state of unrest. president has been in a hospital ever since he was wounded in an attack earlier this month. he continues to cling to power despite numerous demands he steps down. cnn's nick robertson is the only western network reporter in yemen. there were reports that sala would make a public appearance in yemen or saudi arabia. do you know if that's happened?
>> reporter: it doesn't appear as if it's going to happen right now. we've had a presidential adviser saying in the middle of last week that president sala was about to come back. the adviser then said that saleh would make a public statement. it wasn't clear if he would do it in saudi arabia or in yemen. earlier ted, we hoday, we had t principal spokesman saying that's not correct. no public statement by the president, but what it does is sort of a drum beat to those loyal to president saleh that he is under pressure to step down and he's ignoring the pressure. why this confusion from within his loyalist grouping here, but it does have pure concern in the city and around the country.
we're hearing gunshots throughout the city. that, we're told, is quite normal. people are seeing food prices going up threefold, gasoline prices going up sixfold. there are long lines at the gas stations, not able to buy fuel at the pumps. they leave their cars there, five, six days. a lot of concern about security and basic living here because of this sort of flip-flopping, full, of what the president may do or may not do. >> we're lucky to have you there on the ground. it's very rare to get firsthand information that you are getting. you've been traveling around the country. you talked about the difficulties there. can you gauge the mood among the people there? >> there's uncertainty, when you drive through the streets by stay, you go through, perhaps, a several mile stretch of road to maybe two or three check points.
they're fairly relaxed. the soldiers check the car and let you through. when you drive at night, multiply those check points by three or four, and every time you go through the check point, the soldiers shine their flash lights into the vehicle. you see people selling fuel out of their cars, out of gasoline containers they have stashed in the cars so they can get fuel through the black-market. the stores, two-thirds of the stores, three quarters of the stores are closed. many people lost their jobs. the tourism industry has collapsed. that essentially feeds a million people in this country of 24 million people, the money from tourism. there's a real level of uncertainty. if you go out of the capital, there's al qaeda militant islamists who are baffling the
capital. it's very unstable and it will remain so until it seems the president steps down and an interim government is formed. that at the moment doesn't seem to be on the immediate horizon. >> nick robertson inside yemen. you need to stick around to see this. a new camera that lets you focus after you take the photo. oh, we call it the bundler. let's say you need home and auto insurance.
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an autofocus camera, not new or exciting. but a camera that lets you focus after you've already taken the photo and lets you focus anywhere within the image you want has people talking and that is today's big "i." let's talk with the entrepreneur who created this concept while working on his doctoral thesis at stanford. thanks for joining us on the show. tell us first about this technology and briefly how it works. >> thanks for having me on the show. this technology is based on some work at stanford including my ph.d. research. i've been personally working on it for eight years. now we're taking this technology out of the academic lab and making it available for everyone for the camera that will be
available later this year. >> you can make a picture 3-d? >> that's right. it's not based on just software on a regular photograph but it's an entirely new kind of camera. collecting the life yield lets you get an immersive 3-d that goes beyond what you've seen in the movies as well as able to focus after the fact or take the shot with no delay. >> can you give us an idea -- can you demo it for us or show us how it works? >> yeah. if we go to this laptop, what you see here is a picture of a boy on a boat. i took this in -- a fishing boat in norway. if you look in the background, it's focused on these mountains in the background as opposed to this boy's face. >> that looks like a lot of my
pictures. >> we've all taken this type of picture at some point. the amazing thing with this life view camera is after the fact, we can focus in on the boy or back to the mountains. we can make everything in focus, if we want. without 3-d glass, your viewers will be able to view some of this change in perspective as we move the scene around. let me show you some other examples here as well. here is a shot of a flying bird. this is from a real camera, single shot, single lens. once again, you can focus from the background to this bird in the foreground or make everything in focus at the same time. here your folks can start to see the 3-d movement here. >> you can see it so clearly even without the 3-d glasses. i'm curious, is it the camera or the software that's the key
here? can you have one without the other? >> it's a combination of both. so the camera itself has an entirely new kind of sensor, a light field sen sore that replaces the image sensor inside a regular camera. that's what records these missing dimensions of f cameras that are lost in photographs. after that, you need a lot of very advanced software that turns that light field into pictures. it makes an interactive picture a living picture that folks can play with on our website at lytro.com that gives a visual sensation of how much has changed. >> and just really quickly, when will this hit the market and will it be affordable for folks? >> it's going to be out later this year. and we are developing this as a competitive consumer product for everyone. >> does that mean affordable? >> it will be xcompetitively
priced and available for everyone. it's going to be very broad appeal for everyone. >> that's great. it is certainly cool. a lot of people are going to want one of those for sure, especially those who take photos like i do, ren, thank you so much. an apology for michele bachmann. but the newest presidential candidate isn't ready to accept. your "political update" is next. ♪ [ male announcer ] what is the future of fuel? the debate is over. ♪ lexus hybrid drive technology is designed to optimize any fuel source on the planet. even those we don't use yet. because when you pursue perfection, you don't just engineer a future-proof hybrid system. you engineer amazing. ♪
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minnesota congresswoman michele bachmann officially jumped into the presidential race today in iowa. but it may be a tv appearance yesterday that is generating even more buzz. cnn political producer shannon travis joining me from washington. what are we talking about here? >> reporter: well, that yesterday appearance was on fox news with chris wallace. and the host, chris wallace, asked michele bachmann if she was, quote, are you a flake? he has sense apologized. he's said on his website, i messed up, i didn't mean any disrespect. but congresswoman bachmann is not exactly accepting that apology. she said today, quote, it is insulting to insinuate a candidate for the president is less than serious. she's not exactly accepting that apology from chris wallace. we're following a senate race that's going to be a
high-profile senate race. oren hatch is running in this race. some tea party advocates went over to say, butt out. they want them to stay out of the primary. and president obama is doing a little bit of a hook-up for justin bieber, not exactly a hook-up. there was a 14-year-old that the president met at ground zero back in may. this 14-year-old's name was payton wall. and payton said, i'm a big fan of justin bieber's. and the president said, maybe i can do a little something about introducing you to him. we learned today that meet-up happened last week in new york. >> shannon travis, thank you. your next update from the best political team on television is political team on television is just an hour away. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com
this video just in to cnn, former illinois governor rod blagojevich leaving his house heading to court. we're following his car there, where we expect any minute now a verdict in his corruption trial. these are live pictures. our ted rowlands is at the courthouse and as soon as that verdict comes in, we be bring him in and will give you that verdict live right here. as you know, charges against blagojevich include trying to sell the u.s. senate seat that had belonged to barack obama. once again, we are watching rod blagojevich as he makes his way to the courthouse in chicago to learn his fate. we'll bring it to you live right here, just minutes away on cnn. guilty or not? prison, death row or freedom? all of that will be decided by a jury. but 29 days into the first-degree murder trial of casey anthony in florida, live
pictures here. one verdict is clear. and it came from court-appointed experts. >> the court ordered that the defendant be examined by three psychologists to determine her competency to proceed. based upon the reports that the court has reviewed, the court will find that the defendant is competent to continue to proceed. >> anthony's accused of killing her 2-year-old daughter, caylee, back in 2008 and could face the death penalty if convicted. i want to bring in holly hughes, a former prosecutor here in atlanta and now a criminal defense attorney and one of our go-to experts on the anthony case. i want to talk to you about the timing of this question of competen competency. you think it might be related to some emotional testimony from the end of last week? >> i really do. up until now, what we've seen is the defendant, casey anthony, sitting there, she's stoic,
she's disinterested. it's almost like this is just a huge inconvenience, she'd rather be at the club than be here on trial for the murder of her little girl. even when they were showing pictures of the baby's skulls and vines throwing through the eyeholes, she picks up a tissue and pretends to be crying. we see this flat affect. friday was the first time that i think we saw real, true emotion out of this woman. and it happened when her older brother, lee anthony, took the stand. and he was talking about how he felt so left out, they wouldn't even let him know that she was pregnant even when he asked direct questions about it. they didn't tell him about the baby shower. he wasn't told when she was giving birth at the hospital. he is really pained by this, especially when you think of it in light of the fact that if the little girl continued to live and grow up, he would wouldn't
be focused on that. but when he sits there that day, he's not going to have any of those opportunities. he's looking back and looking at the missed opportunities saying they didn't think it was important enough to include me. and it's breaking his heart. and that's what got casey upset. that's when we finally saw that she had some real emotional reaction. and i wonder, does it make her feel guilty about what she's doing to her family? is that why all of a sudden we're questioning her competency and she's falling apart. >> three experts looked at her over the weekend and she was certified to be competent. >> competent to proceed. >> odd that they're looking at it at this point in the trial. meanwhile today, they're back to duke it out. >> yes. >> the defense is trying to discredit many of the prosecution's witnesses. any headlines? >> well, right now, the biggest thing again is that on-running problem the state has had with the defense saying, hey, another discovery violation.
the very thing that judge belvin perry tried to avoid by signing that order in february of 2011 saying, guys, come on, y'all both play fair. if your expert is going to testify to it, put knit a report, tell us what the opinion is, tell us what it's based on and give to it the other side. once again, we see a defense expert on the stand. and before he can finish testifying, prosecutor jeff ashton says, outside the presence of the jury, we have to have another hearing because i think he's in contempt again. he didn't tell us his expert was going to testify to this. then the judge says, how do you know this tough, expert? and he said, i looked on google. seriously, dude? you're going to say, my expert opinion is when i read it on google, they agree with me. come on, randi. >> do we still think the defense is going to be done by the end of this week? >> they indicated that last week. judge perry talked to them friday about timing. he said, i want to be on schedule. are y'all going to finish? wednesday or thursday of the week.
last saturday is a lost day, but they're still saying thursday or friday. then we have to see what the state puts up in rebuttal. that's going to be some fireworks. >> and we also have to see if they do end this week, will they put casey anthony on the stand before friday or on friday? >> that's the $64,000 question. >> would you? >> i would not let her anywhere near the stand. what that's going to do is toward the very end of your case, in the law, we talk about the laws of primacy and recency. people tend to hear the first thing they heard in opening and the last thing they heard. do you really want the last thing to be that your defense is a proven liar, she's a party animal, even if her baby girl drowned like they're trying to say, do you want the jury to see that she's out there partying and groping other women and getting tattoos and stealing her best friend's money? is that the last impression you want to leave with them? if she was my client, no, i'd tie her to the chair, randi.
>> oh, boy. we'll see if jose baez has the same thinking as you do. i don't think if he'll tie her to the chair but he may not put her on the stand. this hour, "sound effect" is a trick question. the u.s. men's soccer team plays mexico in california. who has the home field advantage? >> and a score! the u.s. is on the board! >> the u.s. scores. the crowd goes wild. what do you expect, right? but keep listening. >> coming off. you think that's tactical or a way to -- quick shot taken. and there's mexico. they're back in it. >> the visitors weren't exactly on unfriendly turf in saturday's final at the rose bowl. mexico has such a big fan base in and out of l.a., it's almost never scheduled to play there
out of respect for the u.s. team. here's how the rest of the game went down. >> ropes the shot, blocked. it's a goal for mexico. they've tied it at 2. >> he scores again! mexico leads. he's in trouble now. the net is empty. he'll float it in. mexico has taken over! >> oh, yeah, that's how it all ended. mexico wins the game and a spot in the confederations cup tournament in 2013. in other news, the supreme court has thrown out a california law against selling violent video games to children. in a 7 to 2 decision, the court ruled that it violents the fivit amendment rights. the international criminal
court issued a warrant for the arrest of moammar gadhafi. the charge is crimes against humanity, including murder and persecution. the court also issued arrest warrants for one of gadhafi's sons and for gadhafi's head of intelligence, who is his brother-in-law. prosecutors say gadhafi has used widespread and systematic attacks on civilians in his attempts to put down a popular uprising that began in february. libya is not expected to honor those warrants. with a crucial deadline just over one month away, president obama jumped into deficit reduction talks today. we met with harry reid this morning. the white house says both men are confident that a significant deal remains possible. later today, the president will meet with senate republican leader mitch mcconnell. the treasury department says the united states will hit its current debt limit august 2nd. unless the limit is raised, the government will no longer be able to pay its bills in full. republicans don't want the debt ceiling lifted unless the
administration agrees to major spending cuts. she's made it no secret, but today she made it official. u.s. representative michele bachmann of minnesota is a candidate for the republican nomination for president. she made the announcement in iowa, the state where she was born and the home of the iowa caucuses. a tea party favorite, bachmann claimed that president obama has been a failure. she promised to rein in waste and corruption with a smaller federal government and a lower federal deficit. the drama of american student amanda knox and the murder of her roommate, the latest twist that knox says shocked even her and what her dad says about what happened. that's next. and we are waiting for a verdict in the rod blagojevich corruption trial. you're watching him in his vehicle make his way to the courthouse to learn his fate. he is facing numerous charges including trying to sell the u.s. senate seat that once belonged to barack obama. we have a reporter there at the courthouse. we'll bring you the live verdict when it happens. keep it here on cnn.
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. this is happening now right here in the "cnn newsroom." this is rod blagojevich in his vehicle heading to court. we are expecting a verdict to be read very shortly here. we'll bring it to you live. as you may recall, charges against blagojevich, the former governor of illinois, include trying to sell the u.s. senate seat that had once belonged to barack obama. he's charged with wire fraud, solicitation of conspiracy, solicitation of a bribe he has denied any intention of bribery. he's facing 20 public corruption-related counts in all. this is not the first time that he's had to go to court to hear his fate. after a two-month trial in august, 14 days of deliberation,
jurors deadlocked on all but one of the counts. they found him guilty on one count of lying to fbi investigators. we'll continue to watch his car as he makes his way to the courthouse. we have our ted rowland there is at the courthouse. and we will bring you that verdict as soon as we get it right here on cnn. meanwhile, four years after her roommate's murder and two years after she was convicted of killing her, american student amanda knox is still fighting to prove her innocence in italy. but her appeal took an unexpected turn today. rudy guede testified and knox says what he said, quote, shocked her. you'll remember, guede, a drifter, is a key player. in addition to knox and her ex-boyfriend, guede is the third person found guilty of murdering meredith kercher. kercher was found dead at the italian house she shared with knox in 2007. now fast-forward to today, knox still insists she's innocent. i spoke with her father earlier. we'll hear from him in just a
moment. but first, let's get straight to our dan rivers who is inside the courtroom in italy. he joins us now. guede was called as a witness to talk about something that he told another inmate that knox and her boyfriend were not involved in this murder. but that isn't exactly what happened. >> reporter: that's right. just to put viewers in the picture, rudy guede has already been convicted of killing meredith kercher, along with the other two. his appeal process has been exhausted and he's now being called as a witness by defense lawyers for amanda knox and rafaelle sollecito to try to overturn their convictions. they were hoping undhe would cr and say that amanda knox had nothing to do with it. the exact opposite happened. rudy guede said that he always thought that amanda knox and sollecito were guilty and that's
exactly what he said in court today. really quite a dramatic day. it's the first time since the very beginning of this court process the preliminary hearings when all three of them have been in the courtroom together. and amanda knox was clearly very nervous. you could see it in her demeanor as she entered court today. there was also a dramatic moment when she made a statement after guede saying she was shocked by what he had said. she said that guede knew that they weren't in the house on the night of the murder. she didn't know what happened. and she was regretful that she was unable to sort of question guede herself. >> and we spoke with amanda's father, kurt knox, earlier. i asked him about guede and his claims. i want you to listen to what he said. >> it's very disappointing that he will not own up to his responsibility in this particular crime. we're actually looking forward to the independent forensic expert report that's actually due out on thursday of this week
which we believe is really going to be the turning point to help bring amanda home. >> certainly, dan, the turn of events in the courtroom today was disappointing for her family. what was amanda knox's reaction in court? >> reporter: well, you could see she was obviously disappointed. she was pretty sort of impassive while guede was being questioned. but when she made her statement, she faltered halfway through with emotion, almost sort of crying. so you could tell how charred she felt and how emotional she felt. her then boyfriend, rafaelle sollecito, was much more composed when he spoke. but he again reiterated what amanda knox said, that guede was unreliable, that he changed what he had been saying, that their lives had been rund all because of what rudy guede had said. >> how important is this
forensic test and if we do learn the ruls on thursday, what might we learn from this? could this free amanda knox? >> reporter: i think this will be the key turning point if there is one in this appeal. they now have to rely really on this forensic and dna evidence. the two key pieces are dna evidence from the knife and from the bra that meredith kercher was wearing. now, the defense lawyers seem to be very confident about this, that there's going to be nothing in there that is going to be damning for amanda knox. the methodology that was used in the previous trial will also be scrutinized later on in july. i think this whole thing now is going to get very scientific and it's all going to come down to the forensics. >> dan rivers there watching that case for us, very interesting case in italy, thank you, dan. and one of the most famous celebrated professional sports teams filed for bankruptcy this morning. we have the details for you right after the break.
time right now, about 20 minutes past the hour. and it is time to check in on some top stories we're following. the los angeles dodgers filed for bankruptcy protection today, a move they are blaming on a failed multibillion-dollar tv deal with fox. by filing for bankruptcy, the dodgers organization bias itself some time to seek a media deal and to find a solution to its financial troubles. the move will not disrupt day-to-day operations of the organization for the time being. the headline from wimbledon is who's out. that would be both williams sisters. here you see -- you saw serena there. and the defending champion, losing in straight sets to
bartoli of france. the number one women's seed, caroline wozniacki. and there was a super awkward moment at last night's b.e.t. awards. >> we're here to announce the winner of the coca-cola viewers choice award. and the winner is -- chris brown? i'm sorry, rihanna "what's my name?" >> okay, this is awkward. it's okay. the winner is drizi dre.
talk about a close call, an asteroid about the size of a house passed within 8,000 miles of earth today, a distance that is inside the orbits of many communication and spy satellites. nasa says there was never any risk of impact but it was close enough for earth's gravity to alter the asteroid's trajectory. how serious is this flood threat? details next. and we can update you on the rod blagojevich case. he has now arrived at court in chicago. we are waiting to hear the verdict read in this case. these are live pictures there at the courthouse. he's facing about a 20 public relations corruption counts. he faces a long time in prison if convicted today, charged with wire fraud, solicitation of
conspiracy and solicitation of a bribe. keep it here on cnn. (rambling phone conversation) when an investment lacks discipline, it's never this obvious. introducing investment discipline etfs from russell. visit russelletfs.com r a prospectus, containing the investment objectives, risks, charges, expenses and other information. read and consider it carefully before investing. this past year alone there was a 93% increase in cyber attacks. in financial transactions... on devices... in social interactions... and applications in the cloud.
bribery and public corruption, facing about 20 counts, including wire fraud, solicitation of conspiracy, trying to sell barack obama's senate seat when he had resigned to become president. you may recall the first trial for the former governor deadlocked on 23 of the 24 counts but did find mr. blagojevich guilty on one count of lying to the fbi. we have our ted rowlands there in the courthouse in chicago waiting for this verdict to be read. and we will bring that to you live in a few minutes. keep it here on cnn. meanwhile, more now on the flooding causing big headaches in nebraska. two nuclear power plants sit right near the missouri river. the fort calhoun plant shut down since april for refueling is already dealing with two feet of water. the other plant, cooper nuclear station, sits on higher ground and continues to operate. our patrick ottman is live at the calhoun facility.
any immediate danger there? >> reporter: no, randi. as you noted, this plant has been shut down. but even though it's been shut down, they were refuelling the plant and saw the floodwaters coming in and decided to take the plant offline. they still need to have power to this plant to keep the spent reactor fuel cooled down to make sure it doesn't get overheated and cause an event like we saw in japan after the tsunami there. yesterday the floodwaters rising got near transformers and plant officials became concerned enough that they actually went to plan "b," which was go to one of those larger diesel generators they have. they have three. they only need one to keep the plant online. and they did that for several hours and then once they determined the flooding wasn't going to be a problem for this plant, they went back on the grid late yesterday. but, again, it just illustrates how these things can be a domino effect. not sure when we're going to get a break from the flooding here,
all part of that is affecting the entire midwest. as well, the cooper station plant, it's still online. but the water there is about ten feet above normal. if it gets another three feet, they are required to go offline. that would be nebraska's only two nuclear power plants would not be up and running. that would have an effect on consumers across the state. >> any word on evacuations there? >> reporter: no, we've heard some because of flooding but for right now, officials are saying that they don't recommend that anybody evacuate because of any kind of nuclear threat that might exist or not. they're being very cautious to spread the word that there's really nothing to be afraid of, even with these plants facing historic flooding, there really are so many fail-safes in place, so many thing that they can fall
back on, no matter what happens, even if flooding enters some of these plants, there will not be any kind of nuclear problem or radiation release. >> and how confident are people who live in that area about that? >> reporter: as you could imagine, many of the people here are concerned and live in the shadow of these plants have taken them for granted. the plant i'm standing across the street from, the fort calhoun plant, it's under two feet of water. the only reason it's not completely soaked is they have all these berms and levees. yesterday they had a huge inflatable tube around the plant. that was another problem they had. that was punctured. they're still keeping the water out even though there's two feet of water surrounding this entire plant. >> patrick oppmann in nebraska
for us, thank you very much. why was there such an abrupt recess in the casey anthony murder trial this weekend? we'll tell you in just one minute. and we're also watching another case, the case of former illinois governor, roid blagojevich, making his way there into the courthouse in chicago waiting to hear the verdict in the case of about 20 public corruption-related counts that he's facing, including trying to sell the u.s. senate seat that had belonged to barack obama. this all goes back to 2008 when he was taken into federal custody on corruption charges. he says that he denied any intention of bribery and has done nothing wrong. we'll bring you the verdict from our reporter in the courtroom there as soon as we get it. s s ] ♪ [ cat meows ] ♪
spotlighting the vulnerability of personal information that could be used to steal your identify. the some of the world's largest corporations can't manage to keep your personal and financial data safe, is there anything you can do to protect yourself? and what should you do if your data is exposed? paul stevens with the privacy rights clearsinghouse spoke with cnn. first, if your social security number has been exposed, check your credit reports regularly. stevens recommends starting at annualcreditreport.com to get a free report. if information about your debit or credit card is stolen, you should immediately cancel the account and carefully monitor
your financial statements to make sure your information is not being misused. this is particularly true if it's information about your debit card, since the offer consumers fewer protections against misuse. compared to a credit card number or social security number, an exposed e-mail address may not seem like much. but if compromised, but on the lockout for spear-fishing, target e-mail that poses as a legitimate e-mail. stevens said, quote, unless you're 100% that an e-mail is legitimate, don't respond to it. as for protecting yourself in advance, the most important thing to do is use different pass worwords for every account. unfortunately, though, nothing is fool-proof. the most important thing is to be smart and share your information with as few people as possible. time right now, coming up on 35 minutes past the hour. here's a look at some of the
stories that you may have missed. checking some headlines, the casey anthony trial, live pictures from that. it's back on today after casey was found competent to proceed by three psychologists over the weekend despite wrangling between the attorneys. jurors are hearing testimony from chemist kenneth furton on alternative explanations for bad smells in the trunk of casey anthony's car. casey anthony's defense attorneys have filed a motion having the judge to declare florida's death penalty law unconstitutional. the supreme court handed down two separate decisions today relating to campaign finance in video games. in a 5 to 4 majority, the court decided to toss out an arizona law that provides extra taxpayer-funded support for politicians outspent by priva privately funded opponents or political groups. the court decided in a 7 to 2 ruling on the ban of sale of violent video games to children. minnesota representative
michele bachmann formally announced her candidacy for the 2012 republican presidential nomination today. she made the announcement during an appearance in her hometown in iowa where she addressed the issues of health care, the national debt, jobs, housing and foreign policy. bachmann joins mitt romney, tim pawlenty, jon huntsman and newt gingrich in the race to become the republican nominee for president. a new zealand surgeon has carried out a two-hour operation to save the life of the emperor penguin that landed nearly 2,000 miles from its home in antarctica. many of you have asked about the penguin. the penguin who's been duped happy feet was take ton the zoo after it fell ill after eating grass and sticks. the surgeon empty about half the animal's stomach and insert add tiny camera. he hopes the procedure will
allow the penguin's stomach to start functioning on its own. an international court has issued an arrest warrant for moammar gadhafi. will it have any effect on the fighting in libya? we have a correspondent standing by in tripoli. we're also standing by for a verdict to be read in the case against former illinois governor rod blagojevich. those are pictures of him entering court to hear that verdict read. facing about 20 public corruption-related accounts. we'll bring you that verdict right here on cnn.
waiting for the verdict to be read in the case against former illinois governor rod blagojevich. just checking "the chicago tribune," it says he was quoted when he left his house as he made his way to court to hear the verdict read, quote, my hands are shaking, my knees are weak, as he left the family's home there just outside chicago. so we will, of course, be watching this and we will bring you the verdict once etc. read. our ted rowlands is there in the courtroom. he's facing about 20 counts of corruption-related charges, including fraud, bribery. he has certainly denied any intention of bribery. if you've been paying as close attention to this as we all have here at cnn, you may recall he was taken into federal custody on corruption charges back in 2008. and he went on to have a pretty big book deal. he signed on to "celebrity apprentice" done all kinds of things since then. we'll wait for the verdict to be
read and bring to it you as soon as we get it here on cnn. globe trekking now begins with news of a warrant for the arrest of libyan leader moammar gadhafi. the international criminal court in the hague issued the warrant accusing gadhafi of crimes against humanity, including murder and persecution. it also issued similar warrants for one of gadhafi's sons and gadhafi's head of intelligence who also is his brother-in-law. our david mckenzie is on the phone with us from tripoli? no, we have him live. that's even better. is there any reaction to this warrant yet from the libyan government? >> reporter: randi, in the past, the libyan government has kind of dismissed the international criminal court of the hague saying effectively they're going to ignore all of this. but we will have a press conference soon here with the foreign minister. it doesn't have any practical implications right now. libya is not part of the rome statute. it cannot actually be beholden to sending people to the hague, other than should the rebels
push into tripoli, say, and take gadhafi or should he end up going to another country that is part of the hague group of countries. but certainly we've seen some angry demonstrations at the courthouse in tripoli in response to the icc rulings and generally quite a tense atmosphere here in the capital, politically towards foreign journalists in the last few days and particularly as the rebels are pushing ever closer to the capital, certainly from the southwest. randi? >> and, david, what is the status, if you can bring us up to date, on the fighting at this hour in libya? >> reporter: sure. in the east, it's relatively a stalemate. we have fighting going on in towns near misrata, fighting between the rebels and the government forces and certainly nato has helped to stop rebels from pushing into the areas where the uprising began earlier this year. on the other side, southwest of here, in that direction from me, the rebels are fighting more
aggressively, pushing towards tripoli. they don't have any chance of pushing on to the capital any time soon. what is significant is that they could be moving towards a town east of here. they could cut off tripoli from the border, from tunisia, stopping a vital lifeline from tunisia to the gadhafi regime. that would an effective siege of tripoli. nothing at that stage just yet. but ki assure you the gadhafi regime is watching those fighters very closely as they inch towards the capital. as we will, of course. >> i want to get back to that warrant. some people are saying that this will just give gadhafi more of an incentive to fight to the bitter end. is that the general feeling there? >> reporter: well, the icc hearings or the icc arrest warrant by the chamber will mean
that at the very least, the noose is tightening around gadhafi. the rebels have always said they're not going to talk with the gadhafi regime with any preconditions that it could be -- retire and not face some kind of justice. what it does is paint the gadhafi regime into a corner, as it were, making it more difficult to have effective negotiations with the rebel side. but i can tell you, there are small but significant diplomatic steps from the african union, from countries in europe to try and form discussions between the gadhafi regime and the rebels through third-party countries. should those make some kind of step forward, we could see a political solution to this crisis and not a military one. but certainly any major significant developments or moving forward, we just haven't been seeing that. people are continuing to die on the front lines. this crisis is effectively in a stalemate. and what was thought to be a
couple of weeks, maybe a month or two when the nato campaign started is looking like it might drag on for a really long time now. >> david mckenzie for us with the update, david, thank you. we want to remind you, we're waiting for the verdict to be read in the case against former illinois governor rod blagojevich. this is video from earlier when he arrived at the courthouse in chicago to learn his fate, charged with wire fraud, solicitation of conspiracy, solicitation of a bribe. we'll bring you that verdict, just moments away here on cnn.
and once again, we want to show you these pictures here. this is video in earlier to cnn. rod blagojevich, former illinois governor, at the chicago courthouse awaiting the verdict on the charges of corruption and intention of bribery that he faces. this is the second time around that a trial for him and the second verdict to be read. i want to bring in our holly hughes, former prosecutor who's been watching this case for quite sometime, along with the rest of us. holly, first of all, just looking at the charges and if he is found guilty, he was certainly accused of many things, among them trying to sell barack obama's senate seat there in illinois. he could go away for a very long time here. >> yes, he could. and the important thing to remember is this is the federal system. and there is no parole in the
federal system. the judge will have to follow those. two most important things, mandatory sentencing guidelines and no parole. if in fact he's convicted and gets a sterngs he's going to have to serve that sentence. >> so the judge has no discretion? >> they have very little discretion. there will be a range. they could take other things into consideration, public service, his attorneys will do a presentencing report and put up all the things he should be given credit court. but the judge is hemmed in in the federal system within certain guidelines. >> why do you think so many people are angry about this case? >> this goes to the very heart of what this country was founded on. when you try to sell a senate seat, you are stealing the people's power, the power of the people in a democracy to elect
their own officials. that's why we form this had country. we didn't want a royal family saying, do, do, do, this is the person in charge. we wanted to come here, we wanted to have our say, vote for our own politicians. and when you try to sell president obama's former senate seat, you take away the power of the people. and that's why they're so mad. >> holly hughes with some insight for us, thank you. changing home lives and changing attitudes about homework. one major school district is limiting how much homework really counts. a good idea or a bad idea? we'll put it to our stream team next. ♪ ♪
and once again, we would like to remind you to keep it here on cnn because we are waiting along with you for the verdict to be read in the case of former illinois governor rod blagojevich. he is facing many charges, about 20 charges, including public corruption. he's charged with wire fraud, solicitation of conspiracy, trying to sell barack obama's u.s. senate seat. we are waiting for that verdict. ted rowlands is there in the courtroom waiting for it as well. and we will bring that verdict to you live right here on cnn as soon as it happens. we should be just moments away from it. in the meantime, homework is a fact of life for millions of students. but it doesn't get the same attention from all of them. some have after-school jobs or they play sports.
others have living situation that is may make it a little bit harder to concentrate. it is these types of distractions that's caused teachers to not count homework as more than 10% of a student's grade. the district says limiting the weight of homework gives a truer picture of the student's knowledge. this is from the memo sent to teachers, varying degrees of access to avocadoic support at home, for whatever reason, should not penalize a student so severely that it prevents the student from passing a class nor should it inflate the grade. the second largest school district in the country has decided to limit homework's influencement we're putting to question to our stream team. how much should homework count? on the team today is jennifer hutt and steve perry. i'll ask both of you. jennifer, how much should homework count, do you think? >> i think 10% is fair.
any more than that is too much. the kids have so much homework, it's impossible to get it all done. we need to limit how much homework is given. >> steve, what do you say to that? >> i think that's a joke. i think when you have a teacher who has an expertise in which they understand what the children didn't accomplish for today and what they need to accomplish for tomorrow and the teachers are being held accountable for what the people know, we need to begin to let the teachers lead. we say we want the most from our children yet our country's schools are in the bottom. >> hold on a minute, you're saying the teachers are worrying that they're going to be held accountable for what the kids are learning or not learning and therefore the children should do more homework? i've got to disagree with you there, steve, respectfully, because i think the important learning should go on during the day in the classroom. and if a little homework can reinforce that learning,
terrific. but the amount of homework that's given, these kids are working themselves to the bone having little time for decompression -- my almost -- he's 12 1/2. he is so studious and so diligent and he works so hard. he stays up so late just doing his work, i have to put the kid to bed. he gets no time for extras, for relaxation or fun. how helpful is that? he's tired the next day. >> steve, you want to respond? >> simply being upset doesn't pak you right respectfully. the fact is the reason why the l.a. unified school district said for 694,000 children that it's not going to work, they feel some kids' lives are too tough at home. these are the low expectations of soft racism that someone like george bush talked about. we're not going to expect you to do it because we know wek you can't. that's not the answer. >> we are out of time.
it was quick. but we appreciate both of you coming on. what's better than dinner with the president? how about the vice president for dessert? you're cnn "political update" is next. and we continue to watch as we await word here for the verdict in chicago. former illinois governor facing corruption charges. we'll bring that verdict to you in just moments. when an investment lacks discipline, it's never this obvious. introducing investment discipline etfs from russell. visit russelletfs.com r a prospectus, containing the investment objectives, risks, charges, expenses and other information. read and consider it carefully before investing.
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we want to remind you that we are awaiting the verdict to be read in the case against former illinois governor rod blagojevich. he is at the federal courthouse in chicago, left his home just a while ago. he's facing about 20 public corruption-related counts. he stands to go away to prison for a very long time. we will bring that verdict to you as soon as we get it in here to cnn. meanwhile, it's time now for a cnn "political update." joe johns joins me from washington. joe, the obama campaign is asking guess who else is coming to dinner. what's that about? >> reporter: you remember when the vice president got caught off dropping the "f" bomb. biden got a little overexuberant telling the president what a big deal it was. it's now a running political joke. the president dialed up a little reference to this in a web video when he announced that biden is going to join him in a contest for an all-expenses paid