tv The Situation Room CNN August 13, 2012 1:00pm-4:00pm PDT
you think about the individuals whose jobs are relocated or they've downsized. the individuals we work are in double digits in terms of employment for several years. >> i have to cut you off. but "get to work" premiers tonight at 10:30 p.m. best of luck to you. now to wolf blitzer. "the situation room" begins right now. >> brooke, thanks very much. hap happening now, a new wave of enthusiasm and passion in the presidential race. mitt romney's crowds are growing bigger as paul ryan attracts a few hecklers in his first solo appearance. standby. also, a powerful look at the perilous conditions in a city under siege. merely crossing the street a life or death decision. take a good look a this. you'll never be able to afford an apartment with this view or price tag. $100 million. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room."
we begin with the suddenly rejuvenated race for president and the all important race to define mitt romney's new raining mate, wisconsin congressman paul ryan. from the president on down today, democrats are pounding ryan and his ideas. the republican candidates are fighting back even as they campaign separately. we're standing by to bring you a question and answer session with romney and reporters. also, jim acosta is following the romney campaign. he's following the campaign in florida. >> reporter: wolf, mitt romney did not have paul ryan by his side today, but the gop's new running mate is not far from his thoughts.
>> i'm delighted to have picked paul ryan. a great leader. >> the crowds are getting bigger, maybe too big, as mitt romney noted for his own security measures. >> we didn't have enough to get everybody in in time. >> but romney is finding exciting the republican base comes at a price. he must also defend ryan from the attacks on the controversial budget plan, which calls for privatizing medicare. >> the president's idea for medicare was to cut it by $700 billion. that's not the right answer. we want to preserve and protect medicare. it was romney's first solo event since they went their separate ways on sunday. the last event today, an emotional homecoming for ryan in wisconsin. >> my veins run with cheese,
bratwursts, and a little miller. >> but the obama campaign defensive to define ryan has already begun. >> i'm told that governor romney's new running mate, paul ryan, might be around iowa the next few days. he's one of the leaders of congress standing in the way. >> the president's re-election team unleashed a new video, featuring seniors in florida raising questions about the ryan plan. >> it doesn't make sense to cut medicare. the romney campaign first responded by pointing to the name at the top of the ticket, only to later concede president romney would make the ryan plan the law of the land. >> if the ryan bt wou ce to des aspresident, he would have signed it. >> a new usa today gallup poll finds americans are split over the ryan pick. slightly lower than the numbers for sarah palin four years ago. ryan's past statements are co light. whether his thoughts on the massachusetts health care plan.
>> what happens then? only six people have the insurance. it's a death spiral. >> or his comments praising the controversial author, rand, a fierce critic of social welfare programs. >> a lot of people would observe we're living in the novel. >> romney warned republicans of what team obama has in store. >> it's dirt. it's distortion. it's deception. it's dishonesty. >> reporter: romney aids are pushing back on the thought that they're hiding ryan from florida, so they're pushing him to orlando on saturday. but it's expected the two running mates will continue to campaign separately all the way to this the convention. wolf? >> jim acosta covering mitt romney down in florida. we're standing by mitt romney getting ready to take questions from reporters. we'll have live coverage here in "the situation room" this hour. romney's new running mate, paul ryan, is turning out to be a lightning rod on the campaign trail. after drawing huge and enthusiastic crowds during his
weekend appearances are romney, ryan went solo and attracted a few hecklers. take a look at what happened just over at the iowa state fair. >> you know, i heard that president obama is starting his bus tour today. and i heard he wasn't going to come to the iowa state fair. . i think it's become -- >> usa! usa! >> it's funny. we like to be respectful of one another. good to one another. these ladies must not be from iowa or wisconsin.
and those hecklers are removed. our chief national correspondent john king is in iowa covering ryan's campaign today. how did that go? what was going on over there? >> that was what you call welcome to iowa and welcome to the national state. that was paul ryan's first solo event. you just saw what happened there. two women tried to rush the stage. they were screaming stop the war on the poor. they were hauled off by iowa state police. another gentleman in the first or second row stood up throughout ryan and spoke about 12 or 15 minutes, was screaming throughout the speech, restore the common good. defend the middle class. things like that. ryan soldiered on and kept going. only made a couple of comments to the hecklers. made his case that romney and ryan is the ticket to restore jobs to america. but wolf, it's the iowa state fair. you've been here before. it's a feisty event. i asked paul ryan as he left the
stage, what did you think of the hecklers? he shrugged and said, john, i'm used to it. we've been through a lot of politics in wisconsin. so he was in a pretty good mood about it even though his staff wasn't happy. they found it to be disrespectful. as he made his way through the fairgrounds, paul ryan very casually shaking hands saying i'm paul. what's your name? that's what the romney campaign likes. they think he'll appeal to blue collar voters. white working class voter who is are critical here in iowa, in his home state of wisconsin. in the state of ohio and across the midwest. and during that march through the fair and it was a little crowded and a little feisty. i walked up to ryan and
i asked him in the crowd, what do you make, sir, of the obama campaign saying a romney/ryan victory would destroy medicare? >> mr. chairman, are there any voters in your state and in iowa saying this is proof they're going to take away your medicare. what do you say to that? >> we'll play these issues later. our job is to strengthen and protect medicare.
that's what we do. president obama, they're
rationing medicare. we'll deal with these issues later, okay, john. >> reporter: i tell you, wolf, interesting being here and at the big rally yesterday in wisconsin. both states presidents won 2008. the republican governor terry brandstat saying he had a good chance. the president won by 13 points in wisconsin four years ago. about five points before the ryan pick. he went by the obama campaign headquarters and they know they're going to have to work harder in wisconsin. >> certainly will. it's no coincidence, john that the first solo event is over at the iowa state fair. is it? >> he is here at the iowa state fair. if you look around here, it's a great place. it's not great if you're trying to lose any weight. he's been at the wisconsin state fair many times. he was very much at ease.
talking to young children. asking people as he went through, who do you root for? are you for the packers or vikings or bears? he found a little bit of everything. he said, we're going to disagree about football. but we're all americans. very casual campaign style, again, introducing himself to everybody as paul. wearing a checkered shirt. very more at ease in the crowd than anybody. one thing a lot of people arntd governor romney says he needs to be a bit more at ease now that he made the big choice as well. you and i have been around the secret service for many, many years. he did have a relatively small, smaller than governor romney secret service with him today that will be flushed out. how many people does he need? there's a standard level that any vice presidential candidate gets. thenhey adjust it as necessary. the secret service, because we're at the iowa state fair, when people tried to make their way on the stage, when that one
gentleman kept heckling, the secret service turned to the iowa state police officer in charge on the scene, said, you guys deal with it. so the secret service stayed back and let iowa state police deal with what we shall call a feisty display of the first amendment. >> that's a good way of calling it. thanks very much, john king. we'll have you back later. meanwhile, democrats claim paul ryan wants to end medicare as we know it. we're going to take a closer look at what he's proposing and why. the best person to explain it is the congress man himself. he had a closed door briefing to fellow lawmakers after republicans took control of congress last year. he's the senior congressional correspondent, dana bash. >> if we just got rid of all the discretionary spending. >> in this small room, house budget chairman paul ryan could be mistaken for a traveling salesman at a business meeting. >> government is on a reckless spending spree right now. >> cnn was given exclusive access to ryan's session last
year. one of about 15 closed door meetings he held with fellow house republicans. tutorials for them on how to explain ryan's controversial plan to overhaul medicare and medicaid. >> by the time my kids are my age, just those three programs, social security, medicaid and medicare consume all federal revenues. no room for anything else in the federal budget. >> he laid out the need for significant changes to entitlement programs by describing
a tidal wave of debt in stark terms. >> the congressional budget office has an economic model where they measure the economy going forward, and they are now telling us that the entire economy crashes in the year 2037 because the computer simulation can't con sooe in any way in which the u.s. economy can continue. >> not long after the session, he formally unveiled his budget. a highlight for medicare, health care for seniors, no longer would the government pay doctor pills directly. instead lump sum payments would
subsidize private coverage. anyone 55 years and older would not be affected. federal spending for medicaid, the health program for low-income americans, would be sent to states to manage. >> every year we relieve the debt problem, we go about $10 trillion deeper in the hole in adding to the unfunded promises that we are making to americans. >> ryan held the meetings, organized by kevin mccarthy to encourage republicans to give the same talk to their constituents and sell the plan. >> we think the republican budget is the wrong choice for america. but democrats quickly blasted republicans, warning seniors would lose medicare as we know it. which would not be true for anyone over 55. still, it's no seek relate making any changes to medicare and medicaid is a dicey political proposition. and republican leaders quickly realized the most convincing messenger for the ryan budget is ryan himself.
>> we have to break the cycle of politics making empty promises to people. this is why we have to go and explain to constituents the seriousness of the problems. >> according to their internal polling, most of the gains for democratic house candidates come from running against the ryan plan, especially when they described the proposed changes to medicare. the challenge for team romney will be whether they can overcome that and sell ryan as a 40 something politician willing to take political chances to help solve a huge fiscal problem. dana bash, cnn, washington. >> ryan, by the way, he modified the plan subsequently to that briefing he gave. the briefing you saw in dana's report there. he worked with ron widen to come up with more changes. we'll have an explanation of that later here in "the situation room." lots more coming up on that. we're also waiting for mitt romney to take questions in
miami any moment now. plus, we at cnn got some excellent news today. candy crowley has been chosen to moderate one of the upcoming presidential debates in october for coverage of that. also coming up, the new poll. it shows how important debates have become in helping voters make up their minds. also, we're going inside syria. even the simple act of crossing the street requires a strong heart and fast feet. the sniper's bullet is just a crack away. >> stay with us for ben wedeman's report from a city inside syria. you're going to see what's going on. there are a lot of warning lights and sounds vying for your attention. so we invented a warning
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jack cafferty is here with the cafferty file. jack? >> wolf, mitt romney went bold. doing what many conservatives wanted him to do, naming paul ryan his running mate. a lot of people view ryan as a game changing selection, with both republicans and democrats cheering the choice. it's yet to be seen if ryan will make voters more or less likely to vote for mitt romney. ryan's weaknesses are pretty evident. his budget plan of drastic spending cuts include significant changes to social security and medicare. try selling that to elderly voters in florida. it also gives democrats ammunition to play on the same voters' fears, that the social programs they rely on coulbe plus, ryan hirtualo
expeence in the sector, e psint hes snt almost 14 years in ngress, aareer politician, at a time when the public is pretty sick of washington. but 's secon of ryan also has a lo of benefits. for starters, while voters are sick of washington insiders, they tend to reward politicians taking risk and push fr real change. see barack obama in 2008 or new jersey's governor chris chris e christie. for americans who grasp the critical nature of the skyrocketing national debt, now nearing $16 trillion, ryan has a lot of appeal. and if mitt romney is willing to embrace even some of ryan's ideas, president obama won't be able to touch the gop on government spending and deficits. ryan is also a clear plus for the party's base. many of whom never liked romney to begin with. he appeals to crucial independent voters and catholics, too. most importantly, the choice of paul ryan signals a clear choice for voters in november.
more government versus less government. runaway national debt versus painful fiscal responsibility. ryan's a big gamble for mitt romney. but it's a bet he almost had to make. here the question. how much will paul ryan help mitt romney's chances of winning in november. go to cnn.com/caffertyfile and post aomment on my blog or go to a post on "the situion room's" facebook page. ryan much more clearly defines the national debate between mitt romney and barack obama. >> absolutely. he has a detailed, detailed budget blueprint. he spells it out with all the numbers. the only area where he's not as precise as he should be with the tax reform that he supports, but as chairman of the budget committee, he says that's the responsibility of the house ways and means committee. he hasn't gone into detail that he should, which deductions and loopholes to eliminate. on everything else you're absolutely right, jack.
he's precise in what he wants to do. and now almost automatically mitt romney owns that as well. >> >> the committee will get right on the tax reform as soon as they come back from their five-week vacation. >> and when they get to it. syrian rebels claim they shot down a government jet and captured its pilot. take a look at this. while there are pictures of an aircraft in flames, cnn cannot verify the authenticity of the claims. the syrian government blames the crash on a technical failure. meanwhile, the siege of syria's largest city, the largest commercial hub is getting deadlier by the day. cnn's senior international correspondent ben wedeman has been there. some of the images you're about to see are bloody and very disturbing. >> he wasn't a fighter or a revolutionary. he didn't live by the guns.
neighbors and fighters had to hoist his body over walls between apartment buildings in the back streets of the neighborhood to avoid the snipers. his wife was by his side when the bullet ripped through his head. they come to help relatives pinned down by the violence to escape to safer ground. the line between life and death in alepo is perilously thin. just a block away, i met a woman who insists she and her family of six will not leave. i ask her where the front line is, but she brushes off the question, saying she's become accustomed to the shelling.
her son, 1 1/2-year-old seems confused and squeezing his hand tightly. a two-minute walk down the street, an apartment building was hit in an air strike. this building, or rather what's left of the building which really isn't much is in an area where civilians are still living. of course, among the ruins, we found a french book, and somebody studying english, the life of william shakespeare. this self described activists say regime forces don't care if they kill 100 or 2,000 civilians. if they destroy two or three or four buildings.
a rocket slammed into another building in the nearby district, wounding two, raining rubble into the street. all the while, government helicopters hover menacingly overhead, and jets drop bombs on rebel controlled neighborhoods. even the simple act of crossing the street requires a strong heart and fast feet. the sniper's bullet is just a crack away. >> and ben is joining us now from outside that city of aleppo. ben, is there any end in sight to the bloodshed in aleppo? it seems there's a stalemate at the moment. it seems the government army is advancing, it appears, into some of the areas we were in
yesterday. but the rebels still had numbers and a lot of will power to resist. so it seems the fight could go on for quite some time. the army is clearly hesitant to go into the very crowded neighborhoods where the rebels say they've planted ieds are and ready for a street fight if the tanks enter the city. wolf? >> ben wedeman on the ground for us. appreciate it very much. we're also getting a medical update now on in illinois congressman, jesse jackson jr. he's being treated for depression. standby. we'll have the latest from his doctors. ♪ (train horn) vo: wherever our trains go, the economy comes to life.
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the statement did not say when he might go home. graham is being treated at mission hospital in asheville, north carolina. a spokesman posted on twitter that he is receiving antibiotics and is improving. of course, wish him very well. a year almost to the day after google announced the acquisition of cell phones for motorola mobility the company is hinting at the grand plan to take on the apple iphone. they will cut staff by one-fifth but also start a new division to develop ground breaking technologies and quickly. the mill staitary style approac comes with the quip. engineers only on for two years and then disbanded. and now an update on jesse jackson junior. the democratic congressman from illinois is responding well to treatment for bipolar depression. it says he's regaining hi strength but gave no other information on his condition. the son of the civil rights leader has not been seen on
capitol hill since late may. a story we've all been following. finally, a sailor called it the weirdest thing he's seen in 18 years at sea. nasa scientists think a giant mass of pummus came from an eruption of a volcano. they used satellite images of eruptions and the eruptions. it's a lightweight form of lava used to buff skin. it maps 10,000 square miles. roughly nine times the size of rhode island. that's a lot of pumice, wolf. >> i have never heard of pumice. i never heard of t. >> my woman who kngoes to get a m manicure knows what pumice is. >> i'm familiar with hummus. the presidential race is
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president obama and republican challenger mitt romney are no doubt working on the game plans already. the schedule of presidential debates has an estimate set for a while. but there was a major announcement today. there will be three presidential debates. one vice presidential debate all in october. and they certainly are important with american voters. our brand new cnn orc poll found they were very important when deciding how to vote to 57% of those surveyed. that's well ahead of vice presidential choice, convention speeches, vice presidential debates. this year will also make a bit of history. candy crowley will be the first woman in 20 years to moderate a presidential debate. we're very proud of candy. we know she will do a fabulous, fabulous job in that presidential debate. let's talk about what's going on in the strategy session. joining us right now, two cnn political contributors, the democratic strategist donna
brazile and republican strategist alex costilanos. you've worked in the campaigns, donna. do they already start preparing? are they already practicing, or do they wait until after the conventions? >> they should be prepping now. if not, they're missing, i think, spending the time they need to prepare for one of the most decisive moments of the campaign. if you're in a campaign and you know a debate is m copping, you're looking for moments of strength. we call them moss. because the voters look at you, okay, you're going to be president of the united states. they don't know if you're up to the job. they want to see how you are on your feet. how do you respond to the unexpected. these are almost gladtorial contests. the stronger guy wins. >> al gore's campaign manager in 2000. when did he start preparing for the debate back against george w. bush? >> soon after labor day.
the debate team pulls together the material. then they provide the advisers to the candidate. and then you again to look at all of the issues, the topics. you have to know what you're candidate has been saying on the stump. the policy proposals. i still get a chuckle out of that. that was a agreement moment. and then you go through exhaustive debate prepping sessions. >> as exciting as the presidential debates will be, and they will be very exciting. all of us on the biden and ryan debate, that's going to be lively as well. you know joe biden and paul ryan. that could be a pretty exciting debate. >> they're going to be talking about the ryan budget. one guy who knows a lot about it. paul ryan. >> biden will know a lot about it, too. >> he certaiy needs to. 52 million people, americans in one night watch the mccain/obama debate. this one could be higher. these are going to be decisive
moments. the country is in a moment of crisis. they want to know who the stronger leader is. >> when he released paul ryan, that controversial medicare proposal back in 2011, a year or so ago, spring of 2011, a pro democratic advocacy group released the very controversial ad. i'm going to play a little bit of it for you, donna. and we'll show the viewers what we're talking about. ♪ yeah. that ad goes on. we cut it off a little bit too short. it goes onto specifically mention paul ryan. and it looked like from the back, a paul ryan. is that going above and beyond the call of duty, that kind of
vicious attack ad? >> i'm not an ad maker. i don't understand how they craft the ads. in 2011 they did call to basically alter medicare as we know it. he's made some modifications. in fact, ron wrote a paper with him. one person said here's the policy paper. here's some options. ron widen voted against it. but this is a serious discussion we need to have about medicare. >> when you show somebody throwing an elderly woman in a wheelchair and push her over the cliff, and then the words paul ryan come up on the screen. that gives me the impression that it's over the top. >> you know, graphically, again, i don't make ads. so i don't know how people come up with these. alex knows better.
but, wolf, there's so many distasteful, nasty, negative ads out there. if i start condemning ads i will be here all night with you. last week you said go home and watch the ads. because i didn't have cable last week, i couldn't watch it until this weekend. i had to get myself a cold one afterwards. >> did you finally watch the ad? >> yeah. >> what zid you think? >> it was not my kind of ad. once, it tells a story about mitt romney's term at bain. >> it suggested that romney was at least incorrectly responsible for the death of that woman. you think that was over the top? >> i think most americans look at an ad like that and say, you know, no one really pushed a grandma over the cliff. but the message this year, you're going to see a lot more ads like that. grandma better put on the seat belt. democrats are going to throw her over again. republicans are going to say it's too late. poor old grandma is at the bottom of the cliff already because president obama cut $7 million from medicare.
we're going to have a medicare war. it's going to start in florida would be my guess, over who is going to save medicare. >> they're going to have a fact check. who is cutting, who is not cutting. that's coming up later. guys, don't go far away there. i want to continue this conversation. conventions bring out a who is who of u.s. politics. one face will be conspicuously absent. are you okay, babe?
i saw that kind of excitement four years ago. there were huge crowds. much of the same reaction. i think when the same reality catches up with the moment, it's not going to be a plus for governor romney. >> that was david axelrod, the president's campaigned a virz. let's talk about that with donna brazile. does david axelrod have a good point considering ryan and palin. >> i think it's two completely different animals. you're talking about one of the brightest, most well prepared guys in government in paul ryan who is slernly up to the job he's got now and any job he wants involved in the u.s. government. but you can see where the democrats want to go with this thing. >> hold on a second. mitt romney is speaking and taking questions from reporters in florida.
i want to listen and hear what he says. >> -- how it is these tragedies can be prevented. i don't have the answers today. but i'm going to give thought to it. i'm happy to be joined by senator marco rubio and attorney general pam bondi. these are two members of my comeback for america's promise team. we started off this morning in st. augustine with a very overflowed crowd. very enthusiastic audience. i have to tell you, i was excited to be with them. and the message that i keep hearing as i talk to people in florida and across the country is they want to know who will be able to give back good jobs and more take home pay. the current incumbent has not been able to accomplish the objectives. he has no plan to do so.
we're going to be successful in florida. i'm going to turn to the people with me and take some questions. >> thank you for coming to florida, governor. this is a quite stark difference between the two choices that the american people have. the difference is that the vision that barack obama offers for america's future is one that would diminish us. one that makes us exceptional and better than the rest of the world. i look forward to november where we're going to have a new president, a new vice president and we're going to embrace the things that made america exceptional and great.
>> i'm excited to be here today. i'm a florida girl my whole life. we're going to take back florida this time. we have mitt romney and paul ryan. we're so excited to be here. i've been all over the state. our base is so energized and excited. as the governor said, people care about jobs and the economy. and that's what makes mitt romney so special. a leader leads by example. that's what we have in governor romney. i'm proud to be here with him. thank you. >> i'm just saying this tragedy raises once again the question of what can be done to help prevent events like this from occurring. i guess i'm not referring to any particular legislation. i'm just saying this is something that needs to make thoughtful consideration. they already had three of these
tragedies in a row. i happen to believe this is not a matter of the weapon that is used. it's a matter of the individuals. and the choices these people make, and we have to understand how to prevent those koinds of choices from being made. i believe this is a topic that needs to be considered. >> yeah, carl? [ inaudible question ] . >> i can tell youwhat is radical and extreme is to spend a trillion dollars every more than youic that in. it's radical and extreme to pass on trillions of dollars of debts to our children. knowing that we're never going to pay back these obligations that we have taken on. and representative ryan has worked very hard to find ways to
see if we can get on track towards a balanced budget. i'm sure there are places that my budget is different than his. we want to get america on track to a balanced budget. one of the places we agree, of course, is we simply can't afford obamacare. another $100 billion a year of federal spending is not the course. we also shouldn't cut medicare to pay for obama care to the tune of some $700 billion. that's what the president does to medicare. to current recipients of medicare. he cuts the payments that go to medicare by $700 billion and he uses that to pay for obama care. those are places where paul ryan and i agree. i think we recognize people based upon their values and the capacity to get america on track. i pick the person i believe is the right individual to help me, if i become president, to be
able to get america finally to work together in washington, republicans and democrats to solve the extraordinary problems we have. one of the things we've seen in washington is a gridlock, an incapacity to deal with the real problems america faces. and one of the things i like about paul ryan is he's demonstrated an ability to work across the aisle, to find people with common purpose who may disagree on some issues but find enough common ground to get some things done. for instance, him coming together with a plan to save plans for future generations. no change to future beneficiaries. but for future beneficiaries, he and senator widen have come together. this is the bipartisanship we need more of, not less. >> you said he is absolutely right on. i'm curious, is there anything -- [inaudible]. >> well, the items that we agree on i think outweigh any
differences that may be. we haven't gone through piece by piece and said here's a place where ther is a difference. i can't imagine any two people in the same party who have the same positions on all issues. but my plan for medicare is very similar for his plan for medicare. do not change the program for current retirees or near retirees. do not do what the president has done. and that is to cut $700 billion out of the current program. instead, look down the road and say for future young people coming along, let's make sure the promises that we're making are promises we can keep. and my plan, like his, really expands medicare advantage. it says let's give people more opportunity to take advantage of not just the standard medicare, but also the policies that are available in the marketplace. >> we're going to continue to monitor this q&a. we'll take a quick break and assess what we just heard.
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mitt romney is in florida. florida, a lot of people suspect has become more difficult for romney to win on november sixth. >> oh, much tougher. it's ground zero for the medicare debate. you're going to see democrats say they're going to cut medicare. you're going to see republicans say president obamalready has to. unless we grow the economy, we not only wont have jobs and growth, we won't have government revenue for medicare. >> mitt romney doesn't understand paul ryan's budget incorporates the $700 million in
savings that the president has. we also didn't discuss social security. that also matters in florida. >> some other day. >> new leadership and a big shift happening in egypt ahead in the next hour. top generals gone. the intelligence chief gone. and with them, the military's grip on power. what all this means for the united states. of warning lightst and sounds vying for your attention. so we invented a warning you can feel. introducing the all-new cadillac xts. available with a patented safety alert seat. when there's danger you might not see, you're warned by a pulse in the seat. it's technology you won't find in a mercedes e-class. the all-new cadillac xts has arrived, and it's bringing the future forward.
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i tell mike what i can spend. i do my best to make that work. we're driving safely. and sue saved money on brakes. now that's personal pricing. you're in "the situation room." talk in israel of the imminent strike against iran's nuclear facility, potentially before the u.s. presidential election. i'll ask the israeli ambassador to the united states this hour whether there's new truth to the swirling media reports. plus, mitt romney in the key battleground state of florida where concerns over his vice
presidential pick are making major headlines. the chair of the democratic party, debbie wasserman-schultz is here this hour to respond. and a $100 million security system at jfk airport breech eb by a stranded jet skier. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." but first to a stunning power shift at the highest ranks of egypt's historic new government. the country's first freely elected president replacing top generals and stripping the military of the long stranding grip on power since the revolution took down the strong man, hosni mubarak. the surprise move could have
serious implications for the united states and other fls the region. our pentagon correspondent barbara starr is joining us from the pentagon. she has the latest information. what are they saying, barbara, over there? >> wolf, atthis hour, the defen secretary leon panetta is trying to reach out to israel's new leadership. plenty of reason to make that call. a salute from egypt's new defense minister to the man to brought him to power, egypt's president mohammed morsi. he is now the general the pentagon must do business with when it deals with egypt. it's a crucial u.s. military relationship, including massive military exercises, more than $1 billion a year in u.s. aid and access to egyptian air space and bases. president morsi ousted several generals in an apparent effort to consolidate his own fragile power. >> these generals that were
pushed out are the highest ranks in egypt's military, and obviously all of these senior officers are hold owners from the mubarak regime. so trying to usher in a new political era, i think there's always an assumption that part of the battle is going to be over the right to appoint the most senior generals in the military. >> morsi is also dealing with rising military attacks, forcing him to send in armed troops. this is from hosni mubarak that is most critical. he is closely associated with the egyptian military's effort to hold onto power even after the tahrir square revolution. the field marshal has been a key contact for the u.s. throughout thlast eight months of the egyptian uprising and government
turmoil. defense secretary leon panetta has had regular phone calls with him, encouraging democratic reform, all the while knowing it was the military still controlling behind the scenes. they were contempt with morsi and then said this. >> it's my view based on what ef sign and discussions i've had that president morsi and the field marshal have a very good relationship and are working together. >> and wolf, the rising violence of militant attacks in the sinai are a continuing concern, specifically at the pentagon. as you have pointed out there are 700 u.s. peace keeping troops in the sinai. so farth they are safe. >> i assume they stepped up
security for the american peace keepers there in sinai. i assume, barbara. what are you hear sing? >> they will not speak about the specific security arrangement for the troops. but the new egyptian president and new generals are making the push to go into sinai and try to clamp down on the rising militant attacks there. they're getting lot of support from the u.s. and from israel to take that position and try and get a handle on the situation, wolf. >> let's not forget, the u.s. still providing $1.5 building a year in various aid to egypt. barbara, thanks very much. let's turn to israel right now where talk is once again ratcheting up big time of a potential strike against iran's nuclear facilities. a number of israeli media reports now suggesting it could happen before the u.s. presidential election on november 6th. joining us to respond to all of these reports, the israeli ambassador to the united states,
michael horn. great of you to come in. your reaction to this dramatic change in egypt. what's going on? >> the removal of the top general. the intelligence chief removed last week. what is israel's reaction to this. what our major concern is, main taging this piece, which has been so crucial, not just for the security of israel and egypt but the entire middle east and the world. and we will support any move that will advance that. particularly with what's going on in sinai now, where as barbara starr indicated previously, we are cooperating with egyptians who no end to the that peace treaty there were strict limits placed on the number of troops that egypt could have in sinai. and we enabled the numbers to increase in order to help egypt
restore security there. so we are being cooperative together with the united states. >> let's hope the security is restored in sinai. it's unfortunately in a bad situation right now. let's talk about iran. you've seen the reports starting friday, saturday, sunday, throughout the israel news media that a decision almost has been made by the prime minister, benjamin netanyahu to strike at iran's nuclear facilities before the american elections. is that true? >> we have a very active press, wolf, in israel. a very open press. i won't comment on the press reports. no country has a greater stake than israel in resolving the iranian nuclear threat by diplomatic means. we are facing 70,000 rockets that were supplied by iran and terrorist groups along the border. iran has plotted to kill israeli on five continents in 25
countries, including here in washington, d.c. iran has -- rarely misses an opportunity to reiterate the pledge to wipe israel off the map. he just said it last week again. >> is it true the obama administration is urging you not to do that? not to take military action? to give diplomacy, sanctions more to him? >> president obama has said on more than one occasion that all options are under the table. he said that israel has the right to defend the health against any middle eastern threat and only israel as a sovereign nation can decide how best to defend it. >> if you do take action, do you believe he will support you? >> i believe president obama has recognized our right to make this decision. and it's not just a right, wolf,@a duty for us. and eight million israeli lives are at stake here. america is a big country. it's far away from the middle east. it has very big capability. it's not being threatened daily
with annihilation by iran. and the iranian nuclear program is advancing. they said the iranian nuclear program is accelerating at the sanctions. so they've taken a big chunk from the iranian economy. the window is small and the ndsmaller. >> could you give me a time line? weeks? months? >> it's not years. it's certainly not days or weeks, but it's not years either. >> when i was in israel two weeks ago and met with israeli sources over there they clearly made the case that it would be better if the u.s. were to take acti. if they have more sophisticated bombs, if you will, an the israelis would really like the u.s. to do it more than israel. >> it has bigger capabilities.
israel does not have strategic bombers or aircraft carriers. the u.s. is a much better capability than israel. >> i won't go into tactical details here. but let's be candid. our clock is moving more swift sli. the iranian program -- >> the israeli clock asopposed to the u.s. clock? is that what you mean? >> very simple. the iranians are stockpiling in rich uranium. they have enough now for nearly five weapons. there's been discussions going on. during that period of negotiations alone iran has given absolutely no concessions and it has enriched enough uranium to fill up an additional device. they're also moving big chunks of the programs underground where given our capabilities we will no longer be able to reach them. >> and so obviously you're not confident in diplomacy. apparently you're not confident in the sanctions which have been
ratcheted up in recent months. covert action. we've seen the covert war going on. cyber warfare. you don't think that's going to get the job done. when all the dust settles, you think it will be military action? >> the fact is numerous ways have been tried to dissuade the regime which will threaten not just israel and the entire middle east. whether it be sanctions or diploma diplomacy. we see the iranian program advancing pace. and that program, in the words of ahmadinejad, in the words of the chief of the iranian litary it's designed to wipe israel off the map. again, we have not just the right. we have the duty. there's a responsibility here. it's not just about trusting the president or the people of the united states. we trust them all. it's about where the buck stops. and in this case the buck stops in the office of the government of israel and jerusalem. >> so basically we're out of time. i hear you saying you're aligned with the u.s. with the obama
administration, but not perfectly aligned. there are nuances, significant nuances, where you don't necessarily agree? >> we still believe that a combination of truly crippling sanctions together with a credible military threat. that's a military threat that we just -- not that we say it, but folks in iran actually have to believe it. if they pursue the weapons, that stands the best chance of dissuading the regime from pursuing the nuclear weapons. >> thank you for coming? >> always. >> so could paul ryan be toxic for mitt romney in the key battleground state of florida? the presidential candidate is about to speak on the ground where concerns are deep about the vice presidential pick. those concerns are making headlines. also we'll get reaction from the chair of the democratic party. my interview with debbie wasserman-schultz is coming up this hour as well. and how a stranded jet skier managed to walk onto the runway at new york's john f. kennedy airport. i'm feeling a very strong
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let's get right to jack cafferty for the cafferty file. >> wolf, the question is how much will paul ryan help mitt romney's chances of winning the presidency. mark writes we're both more accomplished gentlemen than the two crooks we have now occupying the presidency. they have a positive outlook for america where if you work hard you should be be able to keep your hard-earned money. jenny writes, i don't know about winning the election, but hopefully it will focus the election on what this country needs, and that's an economic plan to put people back to work. curtis in philadelphia. i've already met a woman in her 60s leaning towards romney, but with the selection of ryan is not voting or sticking with obama. she lives in battleground pennsylvania, and i bet she's not alone. drew writes i voted the straight democratic ticket four years ago. i won't do the same this time. i was initially on the fence on
whether or not i could support romney. his pick of paul ryan swung me, an independent voter, over to his side. i wanted a staunch fiscal conservative. i'll be voting for romney and ryan. jim in denver, not at all. by doing this romney has thrown his hat in to the ultra right. moderate republicans will not vote for this ticket. and kevin writes paul ryan has many good qualities the republicans haven't had on a presidential ticket in years. he's smart, young, isn't out of touch with the average american and actually has some ideas. the problem with him is the ideas part. agree with him or not on medicare, social security and a whole host of other issues, he and romney will scare the seniors in florida. forget wisconsin and iowa for a second. without florida romney is toast. you want to read more on this subject, you'll find it on my blog, cnn.com/caffertyfile. or through our post on "the situation room's" facebook page. wolf? >> jack, thank you. republicans across the country are praising mitt romney's choice of paul ryan to be a vice
presidential running mate. but look at some of these noto praiseworthy newspaper headlines in the key battleground state of florida. many of them tied to concerns among seniors about the house budget committee chairman's controversial stance on medicare. romney addressed those concerns today. >> we want to make sure that we preserve and protect medicare. the president's plan for a budget deficit was to make it worse. and paul ryan and i are going to get america to cut the spending and get us to a balanced budget. >> let's talk about this and more with cnn contributor ryan lizza. he's a washington correspondent for the "new yorker" magazine. and ron brownspeed of the national journal. ryan, how much of a problem, potentially, is paul ryan for romney in florida? >> look, medicare is a huge issue there. a lot of seniors in florida. and i don't think the democrats are going to attack paul ryan. everyone likes paul ryan.
he's a nice guy. as the campaign moves on, paul ryan is going to fade. he's going to turn into romney and obama. and what romney will be left owning is not a great midwestern paul ryan, it's the ryan plan. and i'm still a little mystified by the pick. because romney has moved the whole debate of the campaign away from jobs and the economy, which were his strengths, if you look at any of the polling, and to the set of fiscal issues and specifically medicare ha is not frankly the republicans' best issue. he's spending all his time on defense now. >> you're mystified now. you were flabbergasted a few days ago. are you mystified as well? >> no. it is a radical shift in the theory of the case. i mean, the romney campaign was in a do no harm, make this as much as possible a retro spective effort on the past four years. stay unobtrusive to voters, and now they have moved in the direction that the obama
campaign has wanted from the beginning. the referendum is going to matter a lot, with or without paul ryan. but the fact is romney has taken the gauntlet that have the obama campaign has thrown down in a way that is a reversal. >> the gop today is increasingly dependent on the votes of older and blue collar whites, while eager to zal back programs to transfer income to the poor are much more resistant to entitlement programs, like medicare and social security that largely benefit the middle class. so is the ryan choice going to slice into romney's demographics, if you will? >> and that's one of the fascinating questions here. the republican colation, as we talked about many times on the show is much different than it used to be. they are much more reliant on blue collar and older whites. they won 60% of voters in '08 and 2010 than they used to be. the voters are generally anti-government.
you saw the comments in jack kvr cafferty's file. romney and ryan will s this doesn't affect anybody or 5 in terms of the changes they would bring to medicare. but it's tough to make that argument. anin polling you see stanl resistance this year and last year when it was voted on blue collar and older whites. they have not bought the idea of converting medicare into a premium supporter voucher program. and we're polling it in isolation. when you poll it with the other half, which is tax cuts tilted toward the affluent, that is especially far from bill clinton in 1996. >> you want to weigh in? >> well, the buzz among the democratic strategist today is, look, we spent the whole campaign trying to tie the ryan budget to romney. but the problem, bill burton, for instance, said this today. he runs the pro obama super pac.
voters do not believe romney would support something as extreme at the ryan budget. democrats argue he's done our homework for us. he's allowed us to tie very controversial policies to mitt romney when previously they couldn't do it. >> are you among those, ron -- i think i know the answer -- who believes the differences between the obama campaign, the obama position and the romney position on the issues, not necessarily is great as some are suggest sng. >> no. i think they are. i think one thing the selection of ryan is going to do is put more pressure on president obama to give us a better sense of what he would do in a second term. he's been light on the details. in many ways the best we know is from the reporting of the deal he seemed to will willing to cut with john boehner on the budget. if you look at the issues. the difference between the two
candidates is as stark as at least reagan in 1980 and probably, i think, since johnson and goldwater in '64. you were talking about very significant changes in direction. the budget is converting to 6 # 0% of the economy by 2050. that's where we were at in 1950. not even before medicare and medicaid, but the interstate highway system. you're talking about a clear choice for voters. and in many ways a sharper choice than you might suspect republicans to propose in a year where dissatisfaction with the status quo may have been enough to allow you to ride through the victory. >> do you agree? >> i totally agree. it's one of the best things about the ryan choice. we do have a clear decision between two distinct views of what to do after the election. and whoever is president is going have to deal with the fiscal issues and basically the two candidates are saying all through 2011 and 2012 we couldn't get together in washington and solve the problems. now the voters get a choice to settle the debate.
and that's a good thing. that's why we have elections. >> stark debate indeed. >> unlikely the voters are going to sell it. it's going to come back very close to 50/50. and you're still going to be left with the same questions. can the parties find a way to compromise when the voters are giving them roughly equal power? >> i'm anxious to get the first national polls, especially in the battleground states in the aftermath of the ryan selection. we'll see if there's a bounce, maybe not a bounce. guys, thanks very much. another question being asked about paul ryan is about his foreign policy experience. how much does he know when it comes to taking to the world stage? we're checki it out. stay with us. and a dramatic new development involving the butler who leaked hundreds of the pope's secret documents.
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many republicans are embracing paul ryan as a lightning rod for fiscal conservatives here in washington. but when it comes to the world stage, his name may not be that well known. jill dougherty is joining us now working that part of the sto. what are you finding out about his resumé? >> well, you know, wolf. vice presidents don't make final decisions when it comes to foreign policy. but remember sarah palin. show showed us the views can have an effect and become an issue in the campaign. so what does paul ryan's view about the united states have to do with all of this? >> our fiscal policy is on a collision course with our foreign policy. >> paul ryan lives and breathes domestic policy not international issues, as he note maryland the speech last year. >> why would a house budget
chairman be standing here addressing a room full of house security experts on foreign policy. >> they say ryan has a thin resumé on international issues, a charge barack obama heard when he ran in 2008. but mitt romney brushes that off. >> he has the experience and judgment, capacity and kashlgt to become president. >> this seven-term congressman from wisconsin, chief architect of the republican plan to balance the budget sees a link between america's economic policy and the national security. >> if we fail to put our budget on a stainable path, then we are choosing decline as a world power. >> paul ryan has seen some of the world. afghanistan, iran, vietnam several middle eastern countries. seven congressional trips. 18 countries in 14 years. on afghanistan, he criticized
president barack obama's planned withdrawl of u.s. troops. but ryan said the u.s. can save a trillion dollars by winding down the wars in afghanistan and iraq. and congressional democrats and the administration agree. on china, ryan's less of a hawk than romney, who wants to designate beijing as a currency manipulator. he wants more money for the military, less for the state department. but he got into hot water hen he claimed there was a lot of smoke and mirrors in the pentagon budget. he later said he misspoke. >> so what would paul ryan advise mitt romney to do on iran or on syria? well, he hasn't been tested on those issues yet, but he will now. >> he will be tested when he debates joe biden in october. that will be lively. jill, thanks very, very much. the chair of the national committee congressman debbie
wasserman schultz is standing by to join us. that's coming up. also i'll ask her about mitt romney's presidential picks and how the democrats plan to respond to his efforts to put budget issues front and center of the campaign. and how did a stranded jetskier wearing a bright yellow life jacket get past security and walk onto a runway at jfk airport in new york? we have details. direct connect. so i can get three times the coverage. [ chirp ] [ manager 2 ] it's like working in a giant sandbox with all these huge toys. and with the fastest push-to-talk... i can keep track of them all. [ chirp ] [ chirp ] [ male announcer ] upgrade to the new "done." with access to the fastest push-to-talk and three times the coverage. now when you buy one kyocera duracore rugged phone, for $49.99, you'll get four free. visit a sprint store, or call 855-878-4biz. [ chirp ]
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hits the ground in florida, fresh on the heels of a vice presidential announcement. also ahead of him, senator marco rubio of florida. our national political correspondent jim acosta is traveling with mitt romney. he's joining us live. are you on the bus? where are you, jim? >> reporter: that's right, wolf. we're on the press bus for the romney campaign right now. we just finished up a news conference with the gop contender, heading to an event in miami's little havana neighborhood with marco rubio. it was interesting, wolf. near lif every question asked was about medicare. it was aut paul ryan's plan for medicare and whether it was mitt romnes plan for medicare and the gop contender answered yes. that basically their plans are one in the same. at win point he said that my plan for medicare is very similar he said to his plan for medicare, which is not to change
the program for current retirees or near retirees. but then he sort of asked the politics of changing it, whether the voters are ready to change that they relied on for 50 years. he said i had to stick to the medicare issue that i can tell you about the truth. he said the truth is we cannot continue to pretend like medicare is on track to become bankrupt and somehow that's acceptable. so, wolf, obviously there was a gamble for romney to pick paul ryan as his running mate as down in florida, where senior citizen voters are very crucial. this issue is definitely issue number one, at least today on the campaign trail. >> all right. certainly is. thanks so much, jim acosta. appreciate it. as we've been reporting, mitt romney is in florida today. he's on the offensive against president obama when it comes to entitlement reform and medicare. let's talk about that and more with democratic congresswoman and chair of the democratic national committee, debbie wasserman schultz. she's joining us from florida as
well. you know paul ryan. you've known him for many years. you've been on my show with him over the years. i went back and looked. two years ago you were on with him in "the situation room." i have a clip of that conversation i had. because he explains where he stands on medicare. it's a very specific issues. the ages where he would accept changes. listen to what he told me. >> what i am trying to propose is something responsible. prevent cuts from hitting current seniors, people near retirement, and reform the programs for those of us under 54 because we know they're going bankrupt and put them on the path of solvency and sustainability. >> so the question is, just to be precise, he does call for dramatic changes for people 54 and under. anyone 55 or older or any senior living in florida right now they have absolutely nothing to worry about because it would not affect them at all.
you accept that, right? >> no, paul ryan's views on medicare two years ago and how to shore it up were extreme and wrong then ch and they're extreme and wrong now and made worse by the fact that now they're in charge of the house of representatives, and actually if mitt romney and paul ryan became president and vice president of the united states, they would be able to end the medicare guarantee, shred the health care safety net that medicare has provided for more than 50 years, and turn medicare into a voucher program. leaving seniors really out in the cold because as health care costs grow larger than the voucher provides, seniors wouldn't have enough money to cover their health care costs. and we know that the romney/ryan plan would increase medicare proce proceed yu premiums by $6,300 each year. >> he says he's not calling for any changes for anyone 55 and older. including anyone who is on
medicare right anyway. let's say we accept the description you have of all the changes, that affects people ten years for now, when they're eligible for medicare. but it doesn't affect anne who is receiving medicare right now or those who have ten years to go. 55 and older. >> it certainly does. i'll explain. >> i will. i'm happy to. >> explain how his recommendations for those under 55 impact them? >> i'm happy to. first of all, mitt romney and paul ryan presume people younger than 65 years old who have spent decades. >> he said 55. >> okay. so 55 and younger. we'll start with that age. those people have spent decades paying into medicare. and because of the arbitrary cutoff of 55 years old that
romney has established that means we would no longer for those people have medicare be a guarantee. instead, we would shred the safety net. it would be a voucher. they pay more than $6,000 more in premiums to pay for medicare coverage, and because health care costs often rise higher than that vouch would at a faster rate s the voucher wouldn't provide for all the health care. >> that's only for people who are under 55 right now. current recipients of medicare. he says that his proposal, and he spelled it out in the house budget committee. he's the chairman of the committee. >> and i'm on the committee. >> so you're familiar with his recommendations. no one over $50 would be impacted by his recommended changes. >> here's how. because -- first of all, we do care that we have a safety net
in place in health care for people are 65 now and as they turn 65. >> but they would continue to. >> no, they wouldn't. >> he says anybody over 55 is going to receive the same medicare that they receive now. >> but their plan ends medicare as we know it. >> for people under 55 years old. >> and that's not okay. >> well, that's a legitimate debate. i just want to make sure that you and he were on the same page that the changes he's recommending will affect younger people, not those currently on medicare or about to get medicare. >> here's why that is not accurate. because people who are younger now, by ending the guarantee, by causing medicare to be a voucher instead of a guarantee, you're going to cause insurance companies to cherry pick the
healthiest seniors, and you're going to cause medicare to be financially more unsustainable. because you'll have only the sickest seniors left in medicare. and that will affect seniors on medicare right now. god forbid mitt romney and paul ryan are elected, then their plan to shred medicare safety net and end the guarantee, turn it into a voucher means we will impact seniors now because the younger seniors, the healthier seniors will go to private insurance, and the less hlthy seniors will end up in medicare, and that will make medicare more financially unsustainable. barack obama and democrats believe we can take medicare, shore it up, leave it as a guarantee. make sure the safety net stays in place. just like when we added eight years of insolvency.
like we did in affordable care act by adding a wellness visit that is without a copay or deductible so seniors can go and get a checkup, which they couldn't before so they can stay healthy. we have shown that you can add sal vennsy to medicare, leave it as a guarantee. if the extremist republicans want to just throw out the guarantee of medicare, then we're going to have a debate about that. but it's not going to make it better for seniors current. and it will rip the safety net from under future seniors. >> the debate will certainly be intense. unfortunately we don't have time right now. it's a key issue. not only in florida but other states where there are a lot of seniors. pennsylvania, ohio, all the battleground states. it's not going away. the debate over medicare. debbie wasserman schultz, thanks
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a pair of deadly earthquakes hit iran. kate bolduan is monitoring that right now. >> iranian authorities are reporting at least 306 people are dead after two quakes shook northwestern iran over the weekend. more than 3,000 were wounded and hundreds of villages were destroyed or damaged. thousands of tents have been set up throughout the region. officials say rescue operations have now been called off. intrigue at the vatican. pope benedict's personal butler will stand trial for leaking
hundreds of secret documents for the pope's personal apartment to an italian journalist. the butler acted out of a desire to fight evil and corruption in the church. a second man, a computer technician, will also be charged. and a new study shows laws restricting the sale of junk food and sugary drinks in schools may curb adolescent obesity. children in states with strong and consistent laws governing the nutritional content of snack food gained less weight from fifth to eighth grade than those with weak laws or no laws at all. they were less likely to remain overweight overtime if they live in the states with the laws. and chad johnson was arrested over the weekend on domestic abuse charges. now he's out of a job. johnson was cut by the team yesterday, one day after he allegedly head butted his wife, who is a cast member on "basketball wives." the two were married in july and
their time together was subject to be a reality show. that show has been canceled also. >> that's ugly. >> yeah. >> thanks very much. so how did a jetskier end up on a runway a at jfk international airport? and what caused a u.s. missile destroyer to collide with an oil tanker near a major international waterway? all that and a lot more coming up at the 6:00 p.m. eastern hour. our abundant natural gas is already saving us money, producing cleaner electricity, putting us to work here in america and supporting wind and solar. though all energy development comes with some risk, we're committed to safely and responsibly producing natural gas. it's not a dream. america's natural gas... putting us in control of our energy future, now.
morning break from an early morning jog and in the indian ocean, a standup paddle boarder navigates the waves. an embarrassing security breach at june f. kennedy international airport in new york is raising serious concerns business airports around the country. cnn's sandra endois over at reagan national airport here in washington. sandra, tell us what happened. >> wolf, many airports are on the waterfront just like this one at washington's reagan national and many times the water actually acts as a security barrier for these airports. but other times, it's the source of great concern. motion detecting wire fences and video cameras, all part of a an hundred million dollar security system surrounding new york area's four airports. but all that state-of-the-art technology didn't stop a stranded jet skier from wandering on to jfk airport. the incident is raising a red
flag with airport security experts. >> i was very surprised by the incident in new york. >> port authority police say 31-year-old daniel casseia was jet skiing friday night when his ski broke down. authorities believe he swam towards jfk airport. when he got on shore, he jumped the fence and walked across at least one runway to terminal 3. no one saw him or stopped him until he was near gate 7 when a delta employee saw him, then alerted authorities. >> it's definitely time to take a look at perimeter security. it's definitely time to see if there are possible threats that can come in from the perimeter where somebody can access an aircraft into cnn shot this video by boat at the edge of the airport security zone. casseia was charged with criminal trespass and now the port authority says it's increasing its around the clock police presence to secure the facility's perimeter, including the waterfront.
in a statement, the authority says we have called for an expedited review of the incident and i complete investigation to determine how raththon oon's perimeter detector intrusion system could be improved. raytheon, the company which designed the security system did not want to comment, only saying it's reviewing what happened. but the port authority police union ys the system has been riddled with problems, including too many false alarms and security breaches. >> technology can never replace your boots on the ground. otherwise all have you is a well recorded incident. in this case, since the system doesn't work, you have nothing. >> it raises the question of perimeter security at all waterfront airports like ones in the nation's capital. tampa, and san francisco. the union is calling for a uniform perimeter plan for all airports, but experts say that may not be so clear-cut.
>> not one airport security measure fits all sizes. we have 450 commercial service airports out there. everything from fairbanks, alaska to atlanta hartsfield. a security standard in place at one airport doesn't belong at another. >> reporter: and the transportation security administration just issued a statement saying it's working with investigating authorities as well surrounding this incident at jfk. law enforcement officials say his story may in fact be true. they say that a boat patrol was out and was approached by a person who said his jet skier friend went missing around the same time. >> sandra, thanks very much for that report. congressional committee sues the attorney general eric holder over the administration's refuse to release certain documents linked to a controversial weapons program. that and a lot more coming up in our next hour. ♪
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happening now, the president is set to go another round against mitt romney's new running mate, paul ryan. we'll hear from him live this hour. a new lawsuit against the attorney general. house republicans are fighting a white house claim of executive privilege. and a u.s. warship collides with an oil tanker. how in the world did this happen? i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room." >> whatever you may think about mitt romney's selection of paul ryan as his running mate it's already been a game change per.listen to the back and forth today between romney and president obama. >> we also shouldn't cut you the medicare to pay for obama care to the tune of some $700
billion. that's what -- that's what the president does to medicare to current recipients of medicare, he cuts the payments that go to medicare by $700 billion and he uses that to pay for obama care. those are plays where paul ryan and i agree. >> i know congressman ryan. he's a good man, he's a family man. he's -- he is an articulate spokesman for governor romney's vision but the problem is that vision is one i fundamentally disagree with. >> we won't know for a while if romney's choice of ryan helps the republicans or the democrats but the debate has changed and that's good. it's no longer simple mr. i a referendum on the president's record during his first term. now there's a serious discussion of what a president romney would do in office if elected because of his selection of ryan. unlike say a tim pawlenty or a rob part man, ryan has laid out a very detailed and controversial budget plan.
that, of course, includes a dramatic change in medicare for americans 55 or younger. the government-run health care program for seniors is exceedingly popular across the country. polls show even conservatives and self-described tea party supporters overwhelmingly support medicare. however, the medicare issue plays out, romney showed guts in tapping ryan and i'm glad he did. could have played it safe with a pawlenty or port man, but romney saw his poll numbers moving in the wrong direction in recent weeks and decided he needed a game change, just like john mccain did four years ago. we know how sarah palin played. let's see how ryan plays. ladies head over to our chief national correspondent john king on the road in iowa right now with paul ryan who is solo on the campaign trail today. john ryan certainly felt heat of the national stage today. tell our viewers what happened. >> reporter: wolf, that first test of how paul ryan fares with
the american people came here at the iowa state fair. as he came here, he found out yes, they have corndogs, just about anything you can eat on a stick, deep fried twinkies and feisty politics. >> like i said, she must not be from iowa. >> it was a feisty welcome to iraq. and his first solo outing on the political stage. >> we like to be respectful of one another. >> state police hauled off two women who charged the stage and ryan sauntered on. >> we don't want to follow europe. we don't want a welfare state. we don't want a debt crisis. we don't want to prolonging this recession. we don't want to keep this path of household incomes going down $4,000. we want to turn this thing around. >> on the way in, cnn asked him about obama attacks that a romney/ryan victory would endanger medicare. >> they're already calling voters here in your state saying
this is proof they're going to take away your medicare. >> we'll play stump the running mate later but our job is to strengthen and protect medicare. that's what we do. president obama, they're raiding and ultimately rationing medicare. we'll deal with these issues later. >> this was his first solo event since being picked for the republican ticket and ryan's casual at ease style is one reason the romney campaign believes he's a big asset in iowa and across the midwest especially with white working class voters critical to republican voters. >> where are you from? >> the upsides are obvious, conservatives love the pick. he's an energetic campaigner and the youthful energy is rubbing off on romney, but there are down sides like romney limited foreign policy experience, only 42 but already 20 years of working in washington. and a conservative record the base loves but is a tougher sell with suburban moderates. what is immediately clear though is that the obama campaign in wisconsin is already working
harder. same look for their brand, but a new script to slam the opposition. calls to wisconsin voters now deal directly with the ryan factor. nice guy the volunteers say but a threat to medicare and social security. >> i think his policies are the big difference. i think that obama you know, is going to help people like you and i. >> the president won wisconsin by 14 points four years ago, but it's much closer this time. republicans here say the ryan pick adds even more energy to a hungry gop base. >> much more intense, much more at stake. much moore on the line. >> of course, the biggest question is whether the ryan pick matters at all once this rollout buzz fades. wolf, the way both the romney and the obama campaigns are talking so much about paul ryan, maybe this year will be
different. >> might be different. the debate certainly has changed over the past 48 hours to be sure. john, thanks very, very much. now to president obama's swing through iowa and his jabs at paul ryan. the president is due to talk about the economy in the city of boone very, very soon. we'll go there live. right now let's bring in white house correspondent dan lothian traveling with the president. what's the latest on that front, dan? >> you're right, wolf. the president talking about the economy here in iowa over the next three days, drawing a sharp contrast with mitt romney. now more ammunition going after paul ryan today. at an earlier event, the president said he was quote a good man but said quite the opposite about his record. >> the state that helped launch him to the white house in 2008, president obama asked for a repeat performance. and found a new way to energize voters by trying to connect gop vice presidential hopeful paul ryan to all that he says is wrong with washington. >> mr. romney chose his running -- as his running mate
the ideological leader of the republicans in congress. he is an articulate spokesman for governor romney's vision but the problem is that vision is one that i fundamentally disagree with. >> in an agriculture rich state dealing with the worst drought in decades, the president made what the white house described as an official stop to hear firsthand from the owners of a struggling family-owned farm. >> we can't make it rain but this help families like the mcintoshes in states across the country, including here in iowa. we're going to keep doing what we can to help. >> i aback drop that seemed to conveniently reinforce his earl attack on ryan and house republicans. that they are to blame for blocking what he said was a much needed farm bill. >> he is one of the leaders of congress standing in the way. so if you happen to see congressman ryan, tell him how important this farm bill is to iowa and our rural communities. >> house republicans are pointing the finger at the democratic-led senate that took a summer break without acting on a bill they recently passed to
offer drought relief to farmers and ranchers. but ryan remains a rich target for the president's re-election team. they're painting his budget plan as devastating for medicare and seniors. bad for the middle class, but good for the rich. >> it's a budget for redistributing wealth to the top. >> he's quite extreme. >> republans call in theirtive a false attack by a president who has delivered nothing but broken promises. >> the president's talking about issues that really don't resonate with the people. i think what paul ryan brings to the ticket is now a serious conversation about debt, taxes, spending, energy, entitlement reform. >> now, the president has also been outlining a series of steps his administration has taken to help farmers during this period of great drought, including up to $170 million to buy beef and fish, but the romney campaign is pushing back saying that no one is more committed to helping farmers and ranchers and than
mitt romney and paul ryan. >> we're waiting for president obama's remarks, by the way, he's in boone, iowa, as soon as he starts speaking, we're going to go there live. the president of the united states getting ready to speak. kate bolduan is getting ready to speak, as well. aren't you, kate? >> i am. any opportunity i can. let's take you over to egypt. the first freely elected president is getting praise and facing protests today after weakening the military's grip on the country. mohammed morsi sent the defense minister who took power after the ouster of hosni mubarak into retirement along with a top general. ian lee reports from cairo that the military seems to be cooperating. >> for the first time in the country's history, they have an elected leaderwho doesn't have to answer to the military. so what has the military said about all this? so far nothing. they've been tight an-lipped which makes us believe they're going along with it, but in two
weeks time roughly, on august 24th, a large protest is planned against the muslim brotherhood and president morsi. this will be a true test of president mohammed morsi's political strength. >> that is ian lee reporting from cairo. now to syria where rebels say they shot down a militaryet and posted this video to prove their claim. [ speaking foreign language ] >> the rebels say this is the pilot of the downed plane on this video. the man calls for other military officers to defect. the syrian government disputes all of that and blames the crash on a technical failure. wildfires in northern california have forced the evacuation of nearly 500 homes and threatening a popular nudist resort, as well. two blazes have burned about 5,000 acres. one firefighter has been injured and three buildings destroyed. billy graham is being
treated for bong kites at a north carolina hospital. his spokesman says he's doing fine. he was admitted early yesterday after developing a slight fever. his doctors say he's responding well 0 antibiotics and should be able to go home soon. of course, we wish him well and a speedy recovery. >> great american. thanks very much for that, kate. the house republicans say president obama and his attorney general have simply gone too far to protect secret documents so they're going to court. we have new information. and the president of the united states has just taken the stage in iowa thanking local folks for welcoming him. we're going to go there live right after this. [music] see life in the best light. transitions® lenses automatically filter just the right amount of light. so you see everything the way it's meant to be seen. experience life well lit, ask for transitions adaptive lenses.
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restore the basic bargain that made this country. the bake idea that says if you work hard in this country, then you can get ahead. and if you put in the effort and you are responsible, then can you find a job that pays the bills. you can have a home that you call your own. you won't go bankrupt when you get sick. you can retire with some dignity and some respect. and maybe most importantly, you know that your kids can get a great education and they can dream bigger and do even better than you did. that is the core of the american dream. that's the american promise. now, the problem is that we had gone through a decade where that promise wasn't being met. it wasn't being kept. so we had gone through a decade where jobs were being shipped overseas. where you were working harder
but you were bringing in less, costs of college, costs of health care were all going up. cost of food, cost of gas, all were going up. we ran two wars on a credit card. tax cuts we didn't need, and that didn't create jobs. and it all culminated in the worst financial crisis since the great depression. so we knew that meeting these challenges wasn't going to be easy. we knew it was going to take more than one year or one term or even one president. but what we also knew was that americans are tougher than tough times. and so even though this crisis that hit uses in 2008 and 2009 was bad, even though a lot of folks lost their jobs and a lot of the folks lost homes and a lot of folks lost savings, so
that the middle class felt even more under the gun than they were before, what we knew was that the american people are resilient and we are tough. and so for the last -- [ applause ] so for the last three and a half years, we rolled up our sleeves and we worked hard. and small byes have kept their doors open. and folks, even if they got laid off, they've rrained to find new jobs. and we created 475 million new jobs, half a million more in manufacturing. the auto industry is back on top. and so we made progress but we've got a lot more work to do. we've got a lot more work to do. >> we can do it. >> we can do it. i agree.
we can. now, here's the thing. you know, some people, they're naysayers and say america's on decline and try to paint things as dark as possible, especially during election time but here's what i want everybody to know. we've got so many things going for us compared to the rest of the world. we've still got the best workers in the world. we've got the best entrepreneurs in the world. we've got the best scientists and the best researchers in the world. we've got the best colleges and best universities in the world. we know how to work hard. and you know, we're a young country. and we're a country that draws on the diversity of -- folks want to come here from all
around the world to be part of this american dream. and most importantly -- most importantly, the crisis has not changed our character. it hasn't changed who we are. it hasn't changed our sense of determination and our sense of neighborliness, and our understanding that we're in this thing together. and so we've come together just like we did in 2008 because our mission is not yet finished. we are here to build an economy where hard work pays off and so no matter who you are or what you look like or where you come from, you can make it if you try here in america. >> so there you have it, the president of the united states making his case for re-electioning in iowa where it all started for him four years ago. he's continuing to campaign through that state. we're going to continue to monitor what he's saying. but you get the gist. he says the stakes couldn't be
higher for the american people right now. the differences between where he stands and mitt romney stands. >> we'll be hearing much more of that. this is the first day of a three-day tour for the president. much more of that to come. still this hour it, we're separating fact from fiction when it comes to paul ryan's medicare plans. stay with us. nnouncer ] citi turns 200 this year. in that time there've been some good days. and some difficult ones. but, through it all, we've persevered, supporting some of the biggest ideas in modern history. so why should our anniversary matter to you? because for 200 years, we've been helping ideas move from ambition to achievement. and the next great idea could be yours. ♪ his morning starts with arthritis pain. and two pills. afternoon's overhaul starts with more pain. more pills. triple checking hydraulics. the evening brings more pain. so, back to more pills. almost done, when... hang on.
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first let's start at the state department which today gave americans permission to donate food and medicine to iran's earthquake victims without needing a special license required under u.s. sanctions against iran. the u.s. has offered to help but iran has not accepted. two earthquakes struck the islamic republic this weekend killing more than 300 people. from the natial security beat a suggestion that businesses feed to use military style tactics to combat cyberattacks. the new study releaseds by a private internet security company revealed companies are too vulnerable to attackers. it recommends more intelligence gath areaing so companies will know when hackers attack and what they're going after. at the white house president obama phoned the mission control for the mars rover today both to offer congratulations and to ask for a heads-up. quoting the president, if you do make contact with martians please let me know right away because i've got a lot of things on my plate but i suspect that will go to the top of the list
even if they're just microbes, it will be pretty exciting. the president is asking the same question you did on friday. >> little tiny little things. >> for you it's very important that they wave. >> that would be cool. >> you and the pr ez. you'll be the first people that call. >> train the cameras on mars. mitt romney and paul ryan's differences. yes, they have different opinions on certain key policy issues. could that cause a problem for the republican ticket? a key romney adviser standing by to join us live. ♪ ♪ lord, you got no reason ♪ you got no right ♪ ♪ i find myself at the wrong place ♪ [ male announcer ] the ram 1500 express. ♪ it says a lot about you. ♪ in a deep, hemi-rumble sort of way. guts. glory. ram.
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male announcer ] tums smoothies. mitt romney promised florida voters today he wants to preserve and protect medicare. he campaigned in the sunshine state without his new running mate paul ryan. some speculated that ryan skipped florida to avoid questions from senior citizens about his plan to overhaul medicare. but the romney camp says ryan will appear in florida next weekend. brian todd is taking a closer look into the criticisms of ryan's medicare plan and whether they ring true. >> we checked some of the facts on this. ryan's facts and the democrats' facts because this could be one of, if not the biggest issue in the entire campaign. ryan's plan for medicare reform was one of the first things democrats attacked him for as soon as he got on the ticket. >> we won't duck the tough issues. we will lead. >> he had hardly cleared his throat from his unveiling before he faced blistering attacks from democrats. they started in on paul ryan by
zeroing in on what could be the biggest issue of the campaign, medicare. here's what democrats say about ryan's proposal toll overhall the government's health care for seniors. >> medicare would be in a death spiral under this plan. >> and mitt romney and paul ryan both want to end medicare as we know it. >> is that true? experts we spoke to say ryan's plan wouldn't necessarily bean a death spiral but it would change medicare fundamentally. an expert at is the independent kaiser family federation separate from kaiser permanente and an editor at cnnmoney.com who studies these proposals laid it out this way. right now they say it's a open ended program and pays for benefits people use. today there's no cap on the amount the government will the pay for medical services provided to seniors under the traditional medicare program. >> one of the main reasons medicare is in trouble right now is that there's this open-ended cost. you get sick, and the government pays. >> currently our experts say,
people can opt for a private plan and the government has a generous limit on what it will pay for th. under paul ryan's plan, they say, there would be a strict cap on what the government would pay. a fixed amount whether you enroll in traditional medicare or a private plan for the first time. >> that's the main way the government will be able to keep costs down under the system. >> under ryan's plan, private health insurance firms would compete with the traditional medicare program for patients. if a patient opts for private coverage and the fixed amount the government pays doesn't cover all of what they need, the patient would have to pay the difference. a new obama campaign web video criticizes ryan for that. >> those kind of cuts are going to be incredibly painful to the working class person and because we're going to be the ones that are going to be paying for it. >> a romry/ryan campaign aide points out his plan doesn't affect anyone in or near retirement right now. president obama is also taking heat for his approach to
medicare. >> he cuts the payments that go to medicare by $700 billion and he uses that to pay for obama care. >> that's been a very familiar refrain in recent dis. our experts say president obama is trying to pay for part of his health care reform law by making some cuts to medicare like reducing payments to providers but one of our experts says some of that money did go back into medicare. >> brian todd, thanks very much. let's get reaction now to the fact check and other issues and joining us is a top romney campaign surrogate, we're talking about the former new hampshire governor john sununu joining us from manchester. thanks very much for coming in. >> good to be here. how are you? wolf. >> kate bolduan is here for the questioning. let me get your immediate reaction to this whole medicare uproar. people under 55, if the ryan plan were to go into effect, it would create a whole new system, a voucher system and there's a lot of concern about that. is mitt romney fully on board
about changing medicare for individuals 55 and under? >> let me make a point first of all. the plan that this ticket will be supporting is the romney plan. and the romney plan has slight differences with the ryan plan. >> what are they? >> principal difference is that not only does the romney plan guarantee that anyone 55 and over will not have their medicare touched, but it provides some options for them for those under 55 that are slightly different. but let's talk about the important thing. where is medicare today? medicare has had $716 billion taken from it and put in obama care and with all due respect to your analyst that said some of it went back to medicare, a very small amount went back to medicare. about $700 billion was taken away which reduces payments to
providers and reduces services. >> isn't it true that paul ryan wants to keep that $700 billion away from medicare as well? >> but not in the romney plan. >> you're saying there's a difference between ryan's $700 billion cut which is a cut in increased spending, if you will. >> that's correct. >> supposed to the mitt romney, on this these two men disagree. >> no, they don't disagree. ryan is on the romney ticket and he has now bought into the romney. >> he's abandoned his own proposal. is that what you're saying? >> he didn't abandon it. you have the top of the ticket running for president. presidents make decisions. although i do understand the democrats with the president they have don't think that presidents always make decisions. but let's clarify where else medicare is. today, medicare is between 10 and 12 years away from bankruptcy. if we don't do something, anybody on medicare today or 80% of the folks on medicare today
and all the folks down to 55 will end up with nothing unless medicare is fixed. president obama wants to continue waltzing without providing a serious proposal to fix it. >> now, governor, when you're talking about these serious proposals but also one thing that's being looked at especially today since the vp announcement is how this is playing politically. i want to read one thing from the former bush speechwriter david frum. >> can i fufrt just finish one point? >>, of course, you can. >> historically people have thought medicare was one of the third rails of politics, that you shouldn't touch it. that was in the old days when the medicare bankruptcy date was 20 or 30 years out. so if you were on medicare or about to come on medicare, you figured that it would be okay all the way through your lifetime. and so you didn't want anybody to touch medicare. today, if you're on medicare, 80% of those folks are going to
live longer than 10 or 12 years and certainly, the majority of the folks by nearly 90, 95% of the folks at about 55 will live beyond that point. >> governor. >> they want it fixed. >> let's talk about the politics of this though. this article that we're talking about, david frum wrote this. obama's message in 2012, forget the economy. it's medicare, stupid. the romney-ryan response, we agree. medicare it is. so when you look at the politics of this, is putting medicare at the forefront taking your off of the economic message, is that dangerous? because some democrats are saying that this is a gift to them. >> medicare is part of the economic message. you cannot fix the jobs issue without fixing the budget. you cannot fix incentives to create growth in america without addressing the fundamentals of the budget and the economy. they're all together. and only obama thinks they're not related.
>> how much of a problem is there, there are other differences you talk about differences between romney and ryan. other differences as well, for example, on the auto bailout, ryan voted in favor of president obama's auto bailout as you remember. mitt romney opposed that auto bailout. ryan voted for t.a.r.p. the bailout of the big banks as you well know. how much of an issue is this going to be? >> i don't think it's going to be an issue at all. we're looking to the future. you've got to fix america in the future. some of the folks that have been talking on television lately are talking about the president's speech. and the president's speech in my opinion was full of a powerful and obnoxious odor of mendacity. he was trying to tell us that under bush, gas prices were going up. they wendown. they were at $1.80 when this president came in. they're at $4, almost $4 today. they didn't go up under bush. they went up under obama. the price of food had a dramatic
increase. not under bush as the president's implying but under obama. middle class families lost values of their assets under obama, not under bush. >> all right. >> the president was trying to take credit for all the great things in america but the gaps became worse under obama than they ever were. >> so the bottom line i want to reiterate this you agree that wherethey disagree romney is now the number one, ryan is number two. so ryan's position's become romney's, right? >> no, romney's position has become ryan's. >> ryan's future positions are those of mitt romney? >> this is a ticket led by a presidential candidate. does obama want to be responsible for all the foolish policies joe biden has supported? ridiculous. >> so on the sensitive issue and the president and other democrats keep bringing it up, women's-related sues, abortion, for example, ryan opposes abortion in all cases including rape and incest.
romney says is he supports abortion for rape and incest. romney's position, holds, right? >> you have a pro-life ticket running against a an abortion inclined in obama and biden. that's the issue. >> but mitt romney is the top of the ticket. so it's his position that he supports abortion rights for women in the case of rape and incest because so far, ryan has not? >> politically, wolf, it doesn't make any difference what i say here. the democrats are going to make it that way. >> john sununu, thanks very much for coming in. we'll continue this conversation. >> thank you. >> we'll take a quick break. lots more news coming up. stay with us. ♪
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a fight between republicans and the obama administration is heading to court. today the house oversight committee stud the attorney general eric holder seeking the release of documents related to the controversial weapons crackdown known as fast and furious". our crime and justice correspondent joe johns has the story. >> the legal action renews a nasty grudge match pitting attorney general eric holder against house reform and oversight committee chairman darrell issa is who is demanding justice department documents. the last round ended with a historic contempt of congress vote against holder in the house of representatives. >> we've produced 7600. >> look, i don't want to hear about the 7600. >> now the committee is asking
federal judge amy berman jackson appointed to the bench last year by president obama to trik down and reject the administration's claims of executive privilege in its battle with congress over documents in the ill fated fast and furious gun walking investigation conducted by the bureau of alcohol tobacco and firearms. when federal agent brian terry was gunned down in arizona in 2010, two firearms traced to the operation were found at the scene. issa and the committee want the court to order the attorney general to produce the documents. >> it's only with the truth that you can get to real reforms. that's always been what my committee has had as a mandate which is get to the truth about waste, fraud and abuse and get to the corrective action. >> the justice department issued a one-sentence reaction. we were always willing to work with the committee instead, the house and the committee has said they prefer to litigate. in the past, holder hasn't exactly held back in describing what he thinks of the investigation.
>> the regrettable culmination of what became a misguided and politically motivated investigation during an election year. >> legal analysts say the ice sa request to the court could face a long and slow road because any district court decision could be appealed. back in 2008, a question of executive privilege came up during the bush administration. and the parties decided to settle the issue heading off an appeals court showdown over forcing key white house advisers to testify before the judiciary committee. conservative legal analyst bruce fine says there are accommodations that can get made to make it all go away. >> one possible compromise would be that only the chairman of the committee and the ranking member could at a secure facility in the department of justice come down and look at the documents that are being withheld under rule no notes can be taken or something of that sort. >> issa says something like that
might be accept able to him. >> they are holding back information that we should be able to see in camera. we've asked to see let our inspectors see it so at least we understand what's there. they've refused. >> issa admits this case isn't likely to get resolved before election day but he says he sees it as a message to the administration about transparency. nancy pelosi called it a partisan lawsuit that wastes taxpayer dollars and inspector general's report coming soon could be the most definitive version of the story we've heard yet. wolf. >> i know you'll be all over it. thanks very much. a bizarre accident involving a u.s. military ship. how could it collide with an oil tanker? stay with us. you'll find out. h provided for r every financial need. and then, in one blinding blink of an eye, their tree had given its last.
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the military says nobody was injured when a u.s. guided missile destroyer strait of hory passage way for ships in the persian gulf. our pentagon correspondent chris lawrence is joining us with the latest. there are amazing pictures of the damage caused by the collision. as we show our viewers these picture, tell us what happened. >> reporter: wolf, they're still trying to figure out exactly how this occurred. but when you take a look at this video, it's clear that this was some collision that happened in the strait of hormuz. from what we've been told by sources, the "uss porter" was heading out of the strait of hormuz into the persian gulf and this japanese-owned oil tanker was coming in. now, theshipping lanes, where they are are pretty narrow, maybe about two miles wide. but, again, you're talking about a 9,000-ton destroyer and a
90,000-ton oil tanker. so it's amazing the injuries weren't more severe. but, again, this is the strait of hormuz. it's been a tense and crowded waterway, a lot of tension going on with iran right now. and it does call into question if the" uss porter" wasn't able to detect that huge oil tanker in time, how sit going to detect the fast-moving iranian everything elselvescsels out there. we saw "the uss cole" refueling in yemen a few years ago when it was hit by terrorist, by al qaeda, 17 sailors died, more than three dozen were injured. but there have been collisions. just a few years ago, a u.s. navy submarine collided with a
u.s. navy amphibious ship causing more than $100 million in damage. this has happened before and it's something the navy is going to have to definitely looking into how it happened this time. >> i've been to the straits of hormuz. it's a narrow area. the whole area is very narrow, a lot of military ship, cargo ships, oil tankers, amazing these kinds of accidents don't happen more frequently. let's hope they don't. chris, thanks very much. koccoming up next, jeanne m with 60 cats that have cameras around their necks. yeah, we found that wonderful thing. and you smiled. and threw it. and i decided i would never, ever leave it anywhere. because that wonderful, bouncy, roll-around thing... had made you play. and that... had made you smile. [ announcer ] beneful. play. it's good for you.
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cameras, to capture on annual meteor shower. these shots are from oregon, arkansas and washington. just look at these beautiful, beautiful photos. the meteor shower occurs every summer in late july and early august. it peaked in the wee hours yesterday. but you might still be able to catch a few stragglers this week. did you see those pictures? >> i just saw them now. but i love our ireporters. they definitely help us a lot. >> they definitely do. turns out that cats do a lot more than just sleep, eat and purr. cnn's jeanne moos unlocks the secret lives of cats with the help of kitty cams. >> reporter: ever wonder what cats do when they think we're not looking? me neither. but thanks to kitty cams hanging off their necks, now we know. they're jumping over fences. they're scrambling across roofs. they're hiding under cars and growling at dogs. university of georgia
researchers teamed up with national geographic to put critter cams on 60 pet cats. got to love those whiskers. the video was eye-opening for the owner of booker t. >> i knew his favorite place to go was down in the storm sewer. >> reporter: and when he stopped for a drink, you could almost taste it. then there was the cat that stumbled on a tree stump full of chex mix to chew on. but the most popular prey for cats in the study, lizards. that's a lizard in his mouth, turns out there was a lot of bird watching but less bird killing. birds accounted for only 12% of the creatures killed. the study resulted in cat calls ranging from virtual killing machines to secret world of slaughter. though only 44% of cats did any hunting when left outside. >> an average of two prey items per week. >> reporter: that probably doesn't count the cat that
attacked an oi p possum that ca too close to the cat's home. >> rathers than bring it home as a gift for the owners. >> reporter: it doesn't take a kitty cam to know that cats turn up in weird places. like the ceiling of the university for peace in costa rica. one of the most common places they hang out seems to be under cars. one of the cats gave the undercarriage of this truck a closer look than most mechanics would. perhaps the most emotionally devastating revelation of the study, say it ain't so, four of the cats were found to be leading double lives. cheating on their owners. archie the tabby was caught on kitty cam at a neighbor's house. these two-timers are getting -- >> food but also love and affection and a place to sleep during the day. >> reporter: as for the owner -- >> i feel like one of those
women on the talk show. my husband has two wives. my cat has two families. >> reporter: get your mind out of the sewer. jeanne moos, cnn, new york. >> kitty cam, who knew? >> i want to know how jeanne moos got a cat on such short notice to come into the bureau in new york? >> because she's jeanne moos. >> did you ever wonder what cat dos when we're away? nonchts. you don't have any cats? >> no. in indiana, we called them farm cats. they came in to get food and lived outside. >> but you knew them. they had names? >> yeah. we gave them names. >> you had a sweet little dog in buffalo, new york. >> twhafs dog's name? >> dolly. hello, dolly. so nice to have you back where you long. she was a member of the family. >> we miss you, dolly. >> we do. you had a dog? >> we
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