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tv   Erin Burnett Out Front  CNN  April 16, 2012 8:00pm-9:00pm PDT

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some of these stories do have happy endings. peter of r.e.m. got his returned after it was stolen in 2008. and yo-yo ma even got his cello back after he left it in a taxi. here's hoping they get them back. it's a senseless crime that has literally rocked us to the core. that does it for us. thanks for watching "erin burnett outfront" starts right now. breaking news, the buffet rule is dead on arrival. and president obama is showing strong in almost every category. does mitt romney have a chance? how big was the secret service sex scandal really? former secret service agent out front, let's go.
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and good evening, everyone. i'm erin burnett outfront tonight. is breaking news, the senate voting on the buffet rule and failing tonight. mostly along party lines. senate democrats called for a vote on the so-called buffett rule today. it is one of the president's election year priorities. it calls for people who earn a million dollars in adjusted gross income to pay a minimum tax rate of 30%. now, the left-leaning group was quick to jump into the debate. target number one for them, mitt romney. >> when the wealthiest 1% pay a fair tax rate like the rest of us, it keeps the american dream alive for everyone. so tell mitt romney, kittens are cute. 1% fat cats who won't pay their fair share? not so much. >> okay. we did the math, though, and the buffett rule doesn't add up to keeping the american dream alive. at least when it comes to raising the deficit.
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it would raise about $4.7 billion a year in revenue. one half of one percent of $901 billion. that's the president's forecasted budget deficit for 2013. already those who earn over $1 million in this country pay a greater share of the income tax burden than everyone earning under $75,000 combined according to the tax foundation. in 2009, the most recent data available, millionaires earn 10% of the income but pay 20% of income taxes. but, by the way, the republican talking points don't add up either. one of the main arguments against the buffett rule is that it would hurt small businesses, but only 1% of small business openers actually have enough income to qualify for the buffett rule. that's according to the treasury office of tax analysis. so overall here's the bottom line. 237,000 individual taxpayers in this country even meet the buffet rule criteria, one of them is john paul digoria.
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he's founder of patron and a member of our outfront strike team made up of the country's top business leaders, entrepreneurs and innovators. good to see you, sir. >> my pleasure. >> buffett rule, would it upset you, make you angry or is it fair? >> i think if you look at it this way, if we gave an extra 5% and it went to really helping people, and not government waste, we would do it in a second. i think a lot of people are saying why should we add more to the deficit and to spending when it's not going to be spent correctly. the first thing they have to do is handle the deficit, not by taxing people more but being more efficient at what they do. for example, i'm not a detail guy, i depend on accountants and administrators to do my detail stuff for me, but i do know the overall picture. and i know if you put business people together in a room, not just politicians, they could shrink the deficit tremendously by good business tactics. so those that have the money will gladly give it if spent properly.
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if not, make it a mandatory rule, if you make that big money, you have to give an additional 5% away to helping the planet, something that does not benefit you, but those less fortunate. now that's what we could all live with. >> do you think then that -- it sounds like what you're saying there is something to this point of fairness. that yes, people who make a lot of money make so much money that on an absolute basis of course they pay more taxes than everybody else but there's still a fairness issue. that it's not perceived as fairly enough, as compared to other americans. >> well, if you give somebody a bunch of cash and you want to do something good with it and you don't know what you're doing, like the government does a lot, you could lose a lot of money. in philanthropy, many of us give a little bit and each year we give more and more to see what actually works. and not just throw money out there and see if it's going to work. if the government did the same thing, fabulous. but if not, if the government were to say to people like us, no matter what you're giving to philanthropy now, pay 5%, but you pay it directly to a cause that will help we, the people, all the people of the united states out and don't let the government control it, now you're getting something
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accomplished. >> let's look at the poll, this is very interesting. people who favor this. this is a bipartisan thing americans agree on. yes, 90% of democrats favor the buffet rule, but so do 53% of republicans and 69% of independents, which you identify yourself as one. so what are they missing? what would you tell them to make them not feel this way? >> well, number one, u.s. government, if you want more money, start learning how to spend it properly now and not wait until you get more money to do it. those that have money, why not work with the government to say, hey, let's take some extra money, but we, the private industry, help americans where they really need it. we could do with less red tape. we could do it effectively, efficiently and for a lot less than the government could do it. let us help. we are the government. we are we, the people. let us get involved and make a difference, not just pay. >> we do have a final count, 51 yes, 49 fail.
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so that is a fail, as 60 votes were needed to pass the buffet rule. what should we do, because mitt romney was overheard speaking at a private events over the weekend about tax deductions he would eliminate. and he did identify one that a lot of wealthy people benefit from. that is a deduction on mortgages for second homes. a lot of these deductions that go to the wealthy seem ridiculous. >> erin, that's a cartoon. no disrespect to mr. romney, he's a very, very smart man. but if you're in the top wealth and are able to have a second home, you shouldn't be allowed to have a mortgage on it. buy it in cash, are you kidding? why have a mortgage on it, that's silly. you should be able to buy knit you should be able to buy it in cash, not have a mortgage on it. there's a way we could help people out that really need it. deductions and things you don't need a deduction for isn't one of them. >> and what about what tim geithner said. i'm curious about this. you're talking about creating jobs and i know you have some specific efforts you spoke about on this show.
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tim geithner said that the economy is getting stronger. in fact the strongest it's been in years. when he did the weekend talk shows. is he right? >> it's starting to get stronger, but only if you relate it to the last three years that it's getting stronger. we monitor this in beauty salons. when the economy went bad, people still went to salons, but less often. instead of every four or five weeks, they start going every six or seven weeks. when they start coming back, you see a change, it's starting to turn. i would relate that statement only to the last three years. however, is it turning like astronomically, no. it's doing it slowly. we have to do more to get more people to work and there are jobs out there. people just have to start taking them. >> all right, john paul, always good to see you. this is a man who is taking his train, yes, he has one, his patron train, to both of the conventions this summer to put his view of the world and creating jobs to democrats and republicans. >> america still works and we want people to know that. >> that's right. thanks very much to john paul. next, the first poll of the campaign released today. president obama is leading in literally every group except the one that could decide the
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election. and latest from the trayvon martin case. george zimmerman has officially asked for a new judge. and new developments in the murder mystery that's captivated the world. we have the story about why it could derail china's quest to be number one versus america. okay. i've had surgery and yes, i have occasional constipation.
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okay. it's the long slog to november has formally begun today, just
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in case you thought it started last fall or a year ago. today it actually started. the first poll of the general election came out. and who is winning the war on women, as some like to refer to it, the president is up 52 to 43 percent among registered voters. it's a nationwide poll. after all the recent talk about which party is winning the war on women, it looks like the president is holding strong there with a 16-percentage point lead over mitt romney. john avalon joins us. anna goldberg also here and mary kate cary in washington, former speechwriter for president george h.b. bush. mary kay, let me start with you. poll numbers really show a problem for mitt romney with women. 16-point margin. is there anything that he can do to close that gap given that his secret weapon, ann romney, he's already used that weapon? >> i think the polls are showing that mitt romney is more vulnerable than he'd like to be. but it's not hopeless. he can pivot like he did this week very easily to get back to
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those pocketbook issues that the women want to hear about. one thing we learned last week with the hilary rosen incident was that the women's vote is not monolithic. the fact that the president, the vice president, the first lady, the head of the campaign, the dnc, all lowered the boom on her so quickly, said to me that they see how volatile the women's vote is as well. we saw tremendous movement in 2010 during the midterms so it's not a hopeless situation for romney. i think he can turn this around. >> you're sort of looking skeptical there, michelle. >> the only thing that the hilary rosen nonstory showed us is that the mitt romney campaign is so incredibly desperate that it seized on a stray comment by a cnn contributor to convince us there's some kind of mythical war on moms. and then they don't even know enough to not to express their glee at the opening when they're having a fund-raiser. they talked about this was an early christmas present. the fact is, is that mitt
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romney's economic policies have always been really unpopular among women. he's lost the women's vote in every race he's ever won. he lost it in 2002, when he won the gubernatorial race. >> he won it in the primary, though. >> right, but in every general election he's lost it. and in those elections the social issues weren't particularly salient because he was still pro-choice. the reason he lost is especially running against kennedy, they hammered him on what his economic policies were going to mean for women. right now those policies are pretty vague. he's pro business, but people don't understand that he wants to cut government even further. remember, most of the job losses that we've seen among women since obama has taken office have been government jobs. he wants to cut those payrolls further. >> it's interesting, although i have to say, if democrats coined more on women, now war on moms, i don't like to have a race to the bottom, but it's all kind of b.s. >> what's going on? we're racing to the bottom. this is a completely manufactured controversy.
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the open mike slip that the romneys made acknowledged that fact. despite the fact that they were fund-raising off that slogan. it's an attempt to play offense on an issue they have been losing. they have been losing because of policies going on in state legislatures across the country. >> contraception in texas? >> exactly right. so this is not out of nothing. so now they're trying to play offense and take away the issue. it doesn't seem to be helping yet. the big point is how incredibly cynical is it to be pumping up a manufactured controversy in an attempt to take away a negative that frankly you've earned and need to work your way out of. not slug your way out of. >> mary kay, let's go to independents now. mitt romney right now is losing to president obama by a five-point margin among independents, which as john avalon points out often 40% of the total vote, obviously many of them lean one way or another. that is five-point spread enough for the president or is that where mitt romney has to find his space? >> oh, i think there's a long way to go here. the election is seven months away. that's a lifetime in politics.
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there are so many wild cards that could still happen. when you think about right now the primaries are pretty much over. there's no more debates left. we have nothing between now and conventions in late august, early september. there's a lot of stuff that can still happen. the fact that mitt romney is that close this far out says to me there's a blank canvas and it's his to grab. >> or an etch-a-sketch waiting in the wings. i mean, that's the -- >> or an etch-a-sketch. >> romney was actually -- >> talk about manufactured controversies. >> that wasn't even him, it was an aide. >> the point is romney will pivot back to the center. this is romney 1.0, massachusetts version, where registered independents outnumbered republicans and democrats. in november, romney was beating obama among independents, and then the primaries happened, and that was that rush to the right, and it ended up damaging the entire brand of republican independents, so he's within
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striking distance and will have to build it back. >> but he's the leader of a party that's an incredibly far right party and they're watching him. they're not going to let him disavow the positions that he's taken in the last few months fighting this primary. >> thanks to all three. former presidential candidate john edwards is on trial for using campaign funds to shield his pregnant mistress. but they're having a lot of trouble getting it started. jury selection today, we have an insider. and pippa middleton caught with a man who pulled a gun on photographers. will the incident trigger gun charges for the royal family's latest wild child? [ male announcer ] this... is the at&t network. a living, breathing intelligence teaching data how to do more for business. [ beeping ] in here, data knows what to do. because the network finds it and tailors it across all the right points, automating all the right actions, to bring all the right results. [ whirring and beeping ]
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so high-ranking power brokers and sex scandals always seem to happen, but lately there have been quite a few. last week former best buy ceo brian dunn stepping down after an ongoing company investigation into whether or not he used corporate funds to finance an affair. and then there's university of arkansas coach bobby petrino, let go because school officials found out about his much younger mistress whom he hired as an employee. and then there's john edwards. jury selection resumed today for his trial in greensboro, north carolina, where he faces six counts of felony and misdemeanor charges and a possible 30 years in prison. the 12 jurors will decide if edwards used presidential campaign money as a slush fund to hide the affair and child he had with his mistress rielle hunt hunter. she's expected to testify. hampton was in court today, a former north carolina deputy
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attorney general. he's blogged about the edwards case. let me start with rielle hunter expected to take the stand. is that expected? how key will that testimony be, do you think? >> well, she is expected to appear, erin. it will garner a lot of headlines and cameras. i don't know that it will determine the outcome of the case. both sides believe that her testimony will be favorable to john edwards. but this case at the end of the day doesn't turn on the sex scandal, the love child, it turns on, you know, somewhat complicated issues of federal election law. and so i also think it's a real issue of whether this jury will be able to relate to rielle hunter. if john edwards expects her to save the day for him, i think he's got a lot to be worried about. >> you've been watching john edwards in court as jury selection has been getting started. what's his demeanor? how involved is he? he's a lawyer himself. >> well, he's not just any lawyer, he's one of the most successful lawyers in north carolina history, arguably lawyer of national renown before
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he became such a famous politician. it's extraordinary to see the defendant, the client in many ways serving as lead counsel. many times during the pretrial hearings, certainly when the jury pool was in the courtroom last week, john edwards was the one bringing his team together, filled with high-powered lawyers from d.c. and north carolina. so he's both client and attorney. >> we've seen this delayed because of his health. people have wondered how serious that is. physically, how does he look? >> well, he looked better today. i did see a bit more of the spring in his step. you know, he's looked at times kind of tired, for which sleep does little good. it's a situation that was of his own making. but i think he looked better, seemed to feel better today. >> hampton, how strong is the case? when you put it altogether, how strong is the case? and given the difficulty of finding a jury of his, quote unquote, peers, given the publicity of the situation, how likely do you think it is he'll go to jail considering as we
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said, it could be 30 years? >> well, i think it's quite likely this will be a working class jury. i saw with the pool in the courtroom more ball caps than neckties, more t-shirts than button-down shirts. it's the type of jury pool edwards connected with as edwards the lawyer, as edwards the politician. it's going to be tough as edwards the defendant. what he has in his favor, erin, is the lack of precedent for this type of prosecution. this is not edwards trying to sell an official act. this was not money that went directly for ads or for yard signs. and he's got former federal election commissioners willing to testify that what he did in their eyes is not a crime. >> all right. thank you very much, sir. we appreciate it. all right, so i was in the middle east last week and stumbled across a few very interesting articles. they were front-page articles in fact, pertaining something near and dear to me. her, the beloved.
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in the gulf news this headline, blackberry still a big seller in the uae. in fact research in motion we learned is negotiating a lease for 1500 square feet of retail space in dubai, where the blackberry rules, thanks to its instant messaging. now, i also discovered that new stores are opening elsewhere. research in motion, the blackberry maker, plans on opening 4,000 retail stores and kiosks in indonesia alone, where there were riots due to high demand when the blackberry bold 9790 was released in november. get this. this is for you iphone lovers. prepare yourselves. the blackberry outshipped the iphone by more than three to one last year in the middle east and africa. newspapers in the middle east reported the blackberry is going to open stores in nigeria. so my beloved rules in the developing world and that's a huge thing that goes uncovered here at home. but it brings me to our number tonight. 770,000.
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that's how many more i phones than blackberries were sold in canada last year. and that hurts. because research in motion is a canadian company. in the u.s. the iphone and android have taken over. about a third of smartphone users have an iphone, 48% an android. only 12% stick it out with the beloved. the big question will be can the rising world, the middle east and africa, outweigh the big giant markets, or will blackberry go the way of the dodo. new developments in the secret service sex scandal. and george zimmerman formally asking for a new judge. the question is will that decision help or hurt him right now.
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we start the second half of our show with stories we care about, where we focus on our own reporting, do the work and find the "outfront" five. first, breaking news from washington. senate republicans voting down a plan to move ahead on the buffett rule which would require millionaires to pay a minimum 30% tax. the president just responded to the vote, blaming republicans for, quote, choosing once again to protect tax breaks for the wealthiest few americans at the expense of the middle class. outfront strike team member john paul, the chairman and ceo of paul mitchell systems is one of the millionaires that would have been affected by the buffett rule. he said he'd gladly pay higher taxes but he does not trust the government to not waste his money. number two, the two then charged with a deadly shooting spree this oklahoma pleaded not guilty today. jake england and alvin watts
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face multiple charges of murdered and hate crimes. all five victims are african-american. hours before the april 6th shooting, england posted a facial slur on facebook when referring to his father's killer. he denied being a racist. our legal analyst sunny hostin said prosecutors have to prove motivation in a hate crime charge and england's statements will be used to argue a different motivation. number three, the united states will not use sanctions on iran despite a plea from the country. secretary of state hillary clinton said late this evening that iran must prove it's serious about nuclear talks before any sanctions are eased. iran held talks with six major nations, including the u.s. on sunday. more talks are set for may in baghdad. u.s. sanctions have targeted iran's central bank, which is used to facilitate the country's crucial oil trade. kim jong kim will be the next president of the world bank. it was the first time a u.s. nominee had faced a challenger. he beat out a nigerian finance minister who has a much deeper
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resume. she criticized the selection process. the world bank has always selected an american as its president and i didn't meanyong kim is one. he's the current president of dartmouth and takes over the world bank on july 1st. it has been 256 days since the u.s. lost its top credit rating. what are we doing to get it back? one of the big reasons we lost the aaa rating is because of the gridlock in congress. we're hearing more bickering and blame than solutions. the buffet rule being the latest tonight. there's the ryan economic plan, but these are just facades that distract her from the real issues. there's a serious discipline problem in washington at all levels of government. it's not just congress, it's not just the white house, everyone needs to start working together to get things done 37 organizations like the gsa which lavishly spent your tax dollars to fund over the top conferences and who made videos mocking the government. or now the latest scandal out of colombia, 11 secret service agents placed on leave and losing their security clearances
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tonight after allegations they were partying with prostitutes in colombia a day before the president arrived for the summit of the americas. the scandal began on thursday with accusations of heavy drinking and womanizing with prostitutes at a hotel in cartagena. the incident came to light after local police became involved they contacted the u.s. embassy. the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff addressed the incident today. >> we are embarrassed by what occurred in colombia, though we're not sure exactly what it is. but what we do know is that we distracted several of our members distracted the issue from what was a very important regional engagement for our president. so we let the boss down, because nobody is talking about what went on in colombia other than this incident. >> at least ten members of the military are also alleged to be involved in the incident.
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the investigation is ongoing. the question is did the scandal compromise the president's safety? ralph is a former director of the secret service and is outfront tonight. good to see you, sir. appreciate you taking the time. >> thank you for having me on, although i wish it were under different circumstances. >> i do too. i think the thing that makes a lot of people deeply concerned about this is these are men that are -- people look at them as sort of the bastions of integrity and of strength and reliability. how could something like this have happened? >> first of all, i think they can still look at the secret service and attribute those attributes to the men and women that are out there every day. but we have agents who made a mistake here. we've had agents in the past make mistakes. but what's key here, erin, is the fact that the director and his team recognizing the gravity of the situation took immediate action, brought those agents out of colombia so that they did not -- were not distracted and others would not be distracted
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when they're in the mission of trying to protect the president of the united states. i thought they reacted very decisively and very quickly. >> ralph, one thing, though, that i think a lot of people are wondering is this wasn't just one guy, this was a lot of guys. this was secret service guys. this appears to have been military guys. it sort of lends itself to does this happen all the time? and happen with a lot of people, as opposed to just a random incident here or there and they just don't usually get caught? >> well, that's what makes this such an unusual incident, erin, the number of people involved is quite surprising. and it is -- it's disturbing. but i can tell you in my 30-plus years in the secret service, i did not witness anything near this magnitude of gravity and i believe that this is an isolated incident, it's an anomaly, and i think we need to wait and we need to, as the chairman said, we need to find out what the facts are. who was involved and the degree
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that they were involved before we rush to judgment here and start to insinuate that this is a systemic problem for the secret service. i don't believe it is. i think this is an isolated incident. >> in espionage circles, some people have called it the honey trap. getting information from an agent using women. that's part of spy movies from times past, right? >> well -- >> go ahead. >> i'm sorry. well, we've all been trained, we've all had this discussions about the possibility of being compromised in a foreign country. as a matter of fact, being compromised right here in the united states. it is not something that is new to the secret service in terms of understanding that that is a threat. and that's why these men and women recognize that their conduct is a direct reflection on the secret service, the department of homeland security and the white house, the president himself.
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and that's why the secret service demands professionalism, whether they're here, whether they're on duty or whether they're overseas, on duty or off duty and that's something that is embedded in secret service from the first agents from the first day they walk on the job. >> what would you recommend that the current head of the secret service do? what would you have done? if it turns out that indeed there was prostitution, these guys were involved in it, should they be fired or should they get a second chance? i mean after all, they're responsible for the president's safety. >> i don't disagree. this is a serious accusation. it is under investigation. if, in fact, some of the activities are in fact correct, i'm sure that the secret service is going to deal with it and there will be proper disciplinary actions taken, which may include the firing of some of the individuals involved. but i think we still need to wait to see and get more facts
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on what happened down there by interviewing the agents, interviewing the people on the ground, others that were involved in the incident from the hotel to the local law enforcement before we make those kinds of judgments. >> all right, well, thank you very much. appreciate you taking the time. former chief of the secret service, as we continue to cover this unraveling investigation and frankly what appears to be a growing or at least a large number of men who were involved. pippa middleton's friend pulled a gun on photographers. will she face gun charges too or were the paparazzi just plain old annoying. and the latest developments in the trayvon martin case. the man who shot him has asked for a new judge today. they have names like idle time books and smash records
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and i saved you money on brakes. that's personal pricing. we're back with our outer circle where we reach out to our sources around the world. we begin tonight in italy where former prime minister silvio berlusconi is on trial. for allegedly having sex with an underaged prostitute. i asked her what today's witnesses had to say. >> reporter: erin, today was about setting the stage and painting a picture about the type of sex parties that berlusconi hosted during the time he was prime minister. one of the witnesses described in great detail how some of the girls started out in nun's habits and football uniforms and stripped down that their g-strings. how the prime minister and his friends were invited to touch the girls and they were in turn invited to touch the prime minister and his friends. this sets the stage for the most important testimony that will be
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coming this spring, that is whether or not ruby the heart stealer, 17 at the time, performed sexual favors for money for berlusconi when he was prime minister. erin. >> wow. that's all i have to say about that. all right, now to bahrain where an anti-government group has called for a week of demonstrations. ahead of the formula one grand prix race on sunday. he is in bahrain, and i asked him if the demonstrations could actually derail the race. >> both formula one as well as bahrain's government says they are determined to have this race go forward. however, if protests here should continue to escalate, opposition groups are certainly saying they want to have more protests in the days leading up to the race, then it could indeed get cancelled at the last minute. now, the economic implications of that, bahrain's economic development board says would be catastrophic. this same race was cancelled last year because of protests and back then, they say, the losses just from that race were
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$600 million as well as thousands of jobs lost. erin. >> thanks. and now to paris, where kate middleson's younger sister, pippa, could be prosecuted for driving in a car with a man who pointed a gun at a paparazzi photographer. matthew chance is in london and i asked him how the royals are responding tonight. >> reporter: well, erin, no reaction from the palace, but these are the images of pippa middleton sitting in a car driven by someone pointing this semi-automatic pistol or something like that like one at the paparazzi photographer in the french capital. you can see the headline, "smirking gun" a reference to the fact pippa is smiling as her friend brandishes the weapon. they all seem to think it's jolly good fun, but of course this is taken very seriously indeed in france. the country just last month was rocked by a series of fatal shootings. whether or not the gun is real, and it's not clear from these photos, the gunman could face an extended stretch behind bars.
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and if pippa is seen as an accomplice, she could be prosecuted too. now new developments tonight in the case of 17-year-old florida shooting victim trayvon martin. the attorney representing volunteer neighborhood watchman george zimmerman on second-degree murder charges has filed a formal request to have the judge recause herself from the case. mark o'mara says the judge has a conflict of interest because her husband is in the same law firm that george zimmerman initially asked to defend him. the decision is expected before zimmerman's bond hearing this friday. mark nejame is partners with the judge's husband. he joins us with florida defense attorney and paul callan. wonderful to have all of you with us. mark, let me start with you. first of all, just ask you what happened when george zimmerman -- i mean did he approach -- speak with you personally? i mean who in your firm actually interacted with him? >> no.
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and first of all, let me state that this happened march 13th and i hadn't told anybody about this publicly until in fact mr. zimmerman provided a waiver and a consent to me allowing me to now state that he in fact contacted our office. so we have not said anything until in fact that waiver came in. when it came in, then we simply let it be known that which he allowed and presumptively wanted it to come out. and that is, he contacted my firm, i was not available, spoke to one my partners. his case was well known. he simply said he wished to hire me to defend him. my partner communicated it to me and i simply declined representing him and my firm simply did not. i have never spoken to him. and then apparently after what i call the debacle of his other two attorneys afterwards on the courthouse steps, a friend of his contacted us again, contacted me directly, not mr. zimmerman but a friend, wanting me to come on.
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at that point i had been hired by cnn as a legal analyst. so i simply said on top of all the personal reasons, i've got younger children and have been involved in many big national cases and they take a lot out of you and i didn't want time away from my children. so with that i simply said that i have the initial issue with cnn and that was it. so i gave five names. one of the names was mark o'mara, who they ended up hiring. lo and behold when the case got assigned it got assigned to jason's wife jessica. we had full transparency, let everybody know and let the professionals file the appropriate paperwork. as they chose to do. >> it sounds like you didn't have any inside conversations with the judge's husband so i would be safe in assuming you don't think the judge is a conflict of interest? >> well, that's not the issue. the issue is whether there's an appearance of impropriety. and i think that's presumably where mark o'mara -- i have not
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seen the motion, but it's pretty obvious that because of my relationship with him and my commenting on a critical person in a case could in fact potentially be considered by some to influence or affect it, it's better, at least what mr. o'mara apparently argues, it would give an appearance of impropriety to the public and we want to avoid that in a courtroom and to the public at all costs. being ethical lawyers, which she is and i am and my partner is, mr. o'mara as well as the other side. i know lawyers particularly well on the other side. so everybody needs to do the right thing, file it and let the process take care of it properly. >> janet, you've tried a lot of cases in florida with the special prosecutor angela corey who obviously is on this case. what's her history? what would you describe going against her is like? how will she do? >> she's very charismatic. what she does particularly well is she embraces her victims, which i think in this case was kind of the reason she was picked.
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she's going to sort of embrace them as her family. i think she already said she prayed with them when she first met with them. and i think that's kind of what this case called out for because the whole community was looking for somebody to take in the martins. so she's formidable in court because of that emotional tie that she has with her victims. >> and let me just play a sound bite to that point of what she said when she talked about praying with trayvon's family. here's special prosecutor angela corey. >> i think that after meeting with trayvon's parents that first monday night after we got appointed in this case, bernie was there, john was there, our prosecution team was there. the first thing we did was pray with them. we opened our meeting in prayer. mr. crump and mr. parks were there. we did not promise them anything. >> so, paul, is this a conflict of interest? is that charismatic and appropriate for a prosecutor to have that link with their -- >> it's strange at one point in
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the case and appropriate in another. most of the time when prosecutors come in, somebody is already under arrest, there's a prosecution going on and they bond with the victim. they are the advocate of the victim because that's the person who was hurt by the crime. >> yes. >> what's unusual in this case is the florida governor appointed her to do an impartial investigation to determine whether trayvon martin was a legitimate victim or whether he assaulted zimmerman. >> and that is not impartial, what i just heard was not impartial. >> no. she sat down and prayed with the family of martin while she was investigating zimmerman. that's not impartial. she's already chosen sides in this investigation before the charges are even handed down. and that's the criticism i think that will be lodged against her overall, that she is a victim advocate but it's affecting her fairness in this particular case. >> and it will affect her ability to stay on this case? >> no, i don't think it will. anyone who knows her knows that's her personality. i think she would do that for either side. she doesn't meet with the zimmermans because that's not appropriate but i think that's sort of the culture of that office and it's a genuine moment for her that makes her difficult to go up against.
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that's who with angela corey is. >> mark, i'm curious, you gave a careful answer as to why you chose not to join the case. there have been death threats against the lawyers that did, at least temporarily. do you think there's anyway george zimmerman can win? >> i think from what i heard so far, that there's a lot of unanswered questions, and when there's unanswered question, there's reasonable doubt. i heard and found out some things in my role with cnn, that much of what -- the first guy reported isn't necessarily accurate, and there's a lot more to this story that needs to come out. >> like what, could you give an example? >> well, as far as what really happened on that particular day, and what mr. zimmerman's background is, and matters such as that.
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i'm impressed by trayvon's mother, coming out and saying, she's just seeking truth. she cops across as a spiritual, good woman. just really wanting to get to the bottom of what happened. with with mark o'meara on one side, and natalie jackson helping represent trayvon's family, i know them both to be excellent ethical lawyers, and if the system is allowed to play out that way, i think we'll get closer to the truth than we could ever hope otherwise, and i think that once all that comes out, we'll all be able to sit back and evaluate. >> paul, final question to you, why then would both sides of this, at least at this point appear to want the record sealed from the public. cnn have asked for those records to be released. given the high national interest in this case. why are they holding back? >> in most states, lawyers fight hard to keep these things out of the public eye. they don't want jurors to be tainted.
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we don't know what george zimmerman said when they took him into the precinct. he's taken in in handcuffs and released. a detailed statement was taken in the precinct. does that hurt or help him. and will it poison a jury panel in the future? there will be hearings on admissibility down the road. i think for that reason, they're trying to tamp down the public disclosure, get the passion level down so we can make a reasoned decision about what's admissible and what's not admissible. >> thank you all of you for being with us. on the way back from dubai this weekend i picked up a magazine called viva. full of articles about relationships, fashion and health. i happened upon something i seriously want. the time editor rainshowers about a new style of short shorts. paul, i thought you'd appreciate it. >> using electro muscle
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there are bizarre new developments in a story we've been following for weeks now. you may remember a british businessman was found dead in a chinese hotel. some were suspicious and since then, a very different and much more compelling narrative has emerged. it turns out that heywood was an associate of a top ranked communist leader. the leader that could have been the next president of china, and that heywood's accidental death may have been anything but, it could have been a poisoning cooked up by his wife. author of the doom and gloom report recently said that the u.s. is being pushed out of china, and only one with country matters for the global economy, china, not america. some say those words are too strong. if china wants to be a