tv The Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer CNN April 30, 2012 4:00pm-6:00pm EDT
happening now the politics of terror, mitt romney on the offensive as the obama campaign marks one year since the killing of osama bin laden. plus he's arguably the most wanted man in china and likely he's hanging out at the united states embassy in beijing. unfolding diplomatic crisis. and why do women only make 77 cents on the dollar compared to men? i'm wolf blitzer, you're in "the situation room." tomorrow marks one year since the u.s. mission that killed osama bin laden and today the terror leader's name is popping up out there on the campaign trail. the romney and obama campaigns
are each trying to paint their candidate as the toughest, but for team romney, it's a built of an uphill battle right now. our national political correspondent jim acosta is watching all this unfold. what's going on in this fight? >> for months, mitt romney has been on offensive. he -- in this debate over the killing of osama bin laden, romney has been on defense, just the way the president wants it. >> as mitt romney was shaking hands in new hampshire, he was asked the question, he had given the same order to kill osama bin laden. >> even jimmy carter would have given that order. >> cnn breaking news. >> tonight i can report to the american people and to the world that the united states has conducted an operation that killed osama bin laden. >> it's the question the president's re-election campaign has raised for days in this new web video highlighting the decision to take out bin laden
and in vice president joe bid biden's speech last week. >> we can't say for certain what romney would have done. >> reporter: they say obama has cheapened a unifying moment. >> i think people will see it as a sign of a decembsperate campa. >> reporter: not so says the president. the president also went after romney's comment in 2007, it's not worth moving heaven and earth spending billions of dollars trying to catch one person. >> i just ask that people take a look at whether they thought it was appropriate to go into pakistan and take out bin laden. i assume that people meant what they said when they said it. >> reporter: but romney's response, that jab at jimmy carter may be a reminder to some that president obama made a gutsy call. the mission to rescue three
pilots in iran -- >> romney is trying to get back on offense with a new web ad, charging obama with a promise to cut federal spending. >> i will also go through the federal budget line by line, eliminating programs that no longer work. >> and he tried out a potential running mate, with pennsylvana pennsylvania senator. >> they aren't interest driven and they're not listening to feel of america. >> i want to help the poor, i want to help the middle class get the kinds of jobs that raise their income. let's focus on helping the people that need the help the most. >> reporter: that comment came on the same day the nation's largest union released another web video. it doesn't exactly play like a romney highlight reel. >> i like to be able to fire
people who provide services to to me. >> romney will travel to new york and appear at one of the city's fire stations. wolf, i did ask the romney campaign for a response to what the president said today. the president did not mention romney by name, but so far the romney campaign has no comment. >> he clearly had a little smirk on his face when he was talking about what people said four years ago and he was apparently referring to mitt romney this that quote. >> when the president starts worrying about what other people might be doing, it's pretty clear he's talking about mitt romney. it's a potential diplomatic nightmare, pitting washington against beijing and putting the secretary of state hillary clinton in a rather awkward position as she prepares to travel to china. we're talking about a chinese equal rights activist who
escaped and now may be hiding in the u.s. embassy. here's stan grant with the latest on the unfolding drama. >> reporter: somewhere behind these walls may well be the answer to china's great guessing game. security at the united states embassy in beijing pounced. i understand we can't take photos, but is chung here at the embassy? >> i don't know whether he is. >> reporter: the blind human rights activist is thought to be es -- chen is indeed here given refuge at the u.s. embassy.
>> when chen guangcheng first fled to beijing, we had to keep moving him from one place to another. chen had been under heavy guard for the last three months. chen angered chinese authorities. he had spent more than four years in prison convicted of disrupting traffic and damaging property during demonstrations, since he's released, he's been in lockdown. this is what happened when we tried to visit chen last year, with hollywood actor christian bale. now bale has released a statement he says an innocent family has been horrifically tortured. while it gives hope that for now, chen is safe, china must
now show its wisdom and compassion and compassion. if indeed chen is here, this threatens to become a political war. but u.s. secretary of state hillary clinton is due in beijing this week and in the past, she has championed chen. stan grant, cnn, beijing. joining us, our state foreign affairs department, getting ready to address presumably this issue, what are you picking up over there as she gets ready for her trip to china. >> this is like a lockdown on saying anything publicly because
it is very, very sensitive right now. what they're trying to do is work this out before secretary clinton gets there. as you know, she's going to be meeting tonight, we'll be on the plane with her, going to beijing for important talks on all sorts of things, the economic relationship and other issues, and then this had to happen. if you listen to what the president said, just about an hour or so ago, it's not much. >> obviously i'm aware of the press reports on the situation in china, but i'm not going to make a statement on the issue. what i would like to emphasize is that every time we meet with china, the issue of human rights comes up. it is our belief that not only is that the right thing to do because it comports with our principles, and our belief, and freedom. and human rights.
but also because we actually think china will be strong. as it opens up and liberalizes its own system. >> and secretary clinton herself has actually talked directly with the chinese about this before, mr. chen was a key part of a speech she delivered back in november. so it is something they have been pushing, but right now it's very, very delicate as you can imagine. and, wolf, beyond this, at this particular moment, the united states needs all the help it can get from china on issues like iran, syria, north korea. >> it's about as delicate as it gets. not only the diplomatic help that the u.s. is receiving from china, but also the hundreds of billions of u.s. treasury bills that the chinese hold right now, this is a real crisis potentially in the works. we'll see what happens, stand by, jill, because i want to hear what the secretary of state has to say about this very, very
sensitive matter. tom foreman is also joining us right now. chen's amazing escape, all the more incredible when you consider he's blind, tom. what do we know. >> we don't know a whole lot. but this looks like something out of a spy novel. chen not being held, but being monitored. we don't know exactly which village or which house, but we know something about the circumstances he was in. his house was surrounded by a wall put there by the authorities and he had guards who roamed around this come pound and kept an eye on him. for several days, many of his accomplices that he talked to on the outside, that he spent a lot of time in bed, thinking that he was going nowhere. he waited until they weren't paying attention to him. he waited until a dark night,
and he's used to that environment, they were not. and then he went out and scaled the six-foot wall around the compound. the activists who helped him out say he actually hurt his ankle going over the wall. they took him, we don't know where exactly. but it is said that he got all scratched up. some of this is forest land, all sorts of farm land. at one point he crossed a canal or river by himself and then he was met by a car on one of these roads out here between where he started and bay jieijing and pi up by one of these actives and carried the rest of the way, 300, perhaps 400 miles until he reached beijing. he may have went to a safe house, moving around the city to make sure that he wasn't caught. and now all the hints are that he's somehow in the u.s.
embassy. if that is true, wolf, that's going to be a big friction point on the side of the chinese. >> tom foreman, thanks very much. >> this just coming into "the situation room," going to go back to our top story, the war of words between the president of the united states and his republican presidential challenger, mitt romney. on this, the anniversary one year since the killing of bin laden, jim acosta is back. i guess they're now, the romney campaign reacted. >> a few moments ago, the romney campaign had responded to the tough words at a news conference. a response from the romney campaign hit my inbox. this is from andrea saal. it is unfortunate that president obama used what could be a good day for all americans and an
opportunity to -- president obama's fectless foreign policy as emboldened our enemies. governor romney has always understood we need a comprehensive plan to deal with the myriad threats america faces. so a very tough statement from the romney campaign to the president. even though the president did not use mitt romney's name during that news conference. and the romney campaign apparently is going to fatake t president to task on this. >> a war of words between the two campaigns, it's only just beginning. we're standing by for those remarks by the secretary of state hillary clinton. she's getting ready to leave for china tonight. . also the equal pay uproar
between our own political contributors. we're talking about alex cast land knows, they had a very sharp exchange, we're doing a fact check, lisa sylvester all over the story. and bill clinton goes from president to cheerleader, it's a far cry from way back in 2008. if there was a pill to help protect your eye health as you age... would you take it? well, there is. [ male announcer ] it's called ocuvite. a vitamin totally dedicated to your eyes, from the eye-care experts at bausch + lomb. as you age, eyes can lose vital nutrients. ocuvite helps replenish key eye nutrients. [ male announcer ] ocuvite has a unique formula not found in your multivitamin to help protect your eye health. now, that's a pill worth taking. [ male announcer ] ocuvite. help protect your eye health.
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attract more hispanics and catholics to the republican ticket. people close to bush tell politico that he truly doesn't want to be on the ticket, that it's not his time. it could mean that 2012 is just to close to the other bushes' presidency. having a bush in the race would immediately bring back talk of the iraq war, torture, spying on americans et cetera. however bush loyalists say -- he doesn't want to be number two on the ticket. they say he's happy giving speeches, doing consulting and policy work through education and literacy foundations. as the son and brother, jeb bush on a republican ticket raises
the -- if bush ran as vp, it would mean a bush on the republican ticket in seven of the last nine presidential elections. still not everybody's giving up hope on jeb bush running with romney. his oldest son, george p. bush, told politico, quote, it would be a phenomenal ticket, unquote. democrats fear another bush, should say? do you? go to cnn.com/caffertyfile and post a comment on my block or go to cnn's facebook page. here's a question, do women make less money than men for doing the exact same work? the republican strategist and cnn contributor alex we asked lisa sylvester to do a fact check for us, lisa's who's
right. >> we reached out to alex castiallana and he -- >> reporter: as an adjunct profess for sorry five years, lisa matt says she often saw on college campuses male professors being paid a lot more than their female colleagues. >> there's a gap between who gets tenure and who doesn't, there's a gap between who gets proo moated and who doesn't. >> she works with the american association for university women. she says full-time working women make 77 cents for every dollar earned by men. it's a common statistic, one now being charged by cnn contributor, alex castiallanos. >> women still make 77 cents on
the dollar than what men make. >> there are lots of reasons for that. >> do women make less than that for doing the same work? >> well, because -- >> wow. >> men work an average of 44 hours a week, women work 41 hours a week. women a want more flexibility -- >> this is not a math is hard conversation. >> he says that men make more because they work more and they go into professions that pay higher salaries. but data directly from the census bureau shows there is a pay gap and it's reel. in 2010, the earnings of women who worked full-time year round were 77% of that for men working full-time year round. not that much different from the 2009 ratio, ends quote. lisa matt says the study fakes into -- >> we're talking about here
control for those things, they do a very sophisticated regression analysis and they say, okay, let's control for those reasons, and then later on figure out what the gap is. it's not as high as 77%, the average median gap, but it's still there, and that's the problem because it's unexplained. we can't say that it's because they work less hours, or it's because they supervise fewer people. >> castillano s's comments -- but she argues one reason is that because's women are more likely to opt to work part-time earning less than men who are less likely to agree to work part-time. >> it sounds like that everyone would want to work as much full-time and they don't necessarily, they feel equally tied, many women do to their children, to their home and want more time there.
>> so the bottom line, is there a depender gap in payroll, yes, that 77 cents that men make -- it refers to full-time workers. but it is also true that many women choose to scale back hours more so than men, women choosing to work part-time and that's also reflected in the earnings. >> bottom line, men and women with the exact same job, do women still only earn 77 cents on the dollar, if they're doing, working the same amount of hours in the exact same job, in the exact same field. >> they have -- there is definitely a gap. but there are all kinds of other control factors, what college somebody went to, what region of the country, if you're talking salaried workers versus hourly workers. hourly workers is 77 cents on the dollar. even if you control for everything you could possibly imagine, all those things, the
college, hours worked, men still make more than women, that gap narrows, it's about 5 cents on the dollar, but it still is there and the fact is men make more than women. president obama going after mitt romney as the anniversary of osama bin laden's death approaches. is it a cheap shot as the romney campaign is now claiming or legitimate? and never mind all the things he said back in 2008, now the former president bill clinton is campaigning pretty hard for candidate obama.
he was one of candidate obama's sharpest critics in the 2008 campaign. but what a difference four years has made. now former president bill clinton is one of the biggest guns out there in president obama's re-election campaign. brianna keeler is working the story for us. brianna, what is bill clinton doing right now for president obama?
>> reporter: one person i spoke to said he's trying to distill and simplify the message on the economy. as a source put it, president obama can take something he said that is easy and obvious and make it seem hard and complicated, so that's where president clinton comes in in that regard. and he's really trying to simplify that message. this source that i spoke with said that president clinton is very eager to help, to defend president obama on the economy and he's expected to be used frequently in swing states targeting moderate democratic voters. in 2007, bill clinton took aim at barack obama, then the junior senator from illinois. >> i'm old-fashioned. i think a president ought to have done something for other people and for his country. when you pick a president. >> reporter: president clinton questioned obama's inexperience. >> i mean when is the last time we elected a president based on one year of service in the senate before he started
running? >> reporter: in early 2008, obama won iowa and entered an all out feud with the former couple. >> i'm here, he's not. >> not surprisingly, bill clinton and president obama have never been especially close. but appointing hillary clinton secretary of state helped some wounds heel and obama has looked to the former president for help. >> you're in good hands. and gibbs will call last question. >> reporter: having president clinton on board might help attract voters in areas where obama struggles. the obama campaign is featuring clinton in ads and hitting up his network of wealthy donors, obama and clinton appeared at a fund-raiser yesterday at the home of long time supporter terry mcauliffe.
clinton's message will be this, i know what it takes to have a good economy and president obama is on the right track. and you heard some of that last night in the remarks that were reported out of that fund-raiser they both attended. president clinton saying that obama is, quote, beating the clock as he works toward economic recovery. >> i think they raised about $2 million last night at terry mcall -- you're getting some other interesting tidbits about their relationship. >> reporter: this is really interesting, if you talk to some folks in the obama camp, they'll tell you that some of the vitriol was overplayed. but certainly there was a time when president clinton and then senator obama certainly had some issues. i was told by a source close to clinton that their relationship has been hot and cold, but it's in a very good place right now. and also that clinton very much, president clinton held a grudge, even more so than now secretary
of state hillary clinton over what happened during the primary, but that the turning point was really during the transition, as president obama got ready to come into office that president clinton was very happy with how he was treated and more importantly, according to this source, how his wife was treated. >> brianna keeler, our white house correspondent. joining us now former republican senator norm coleman, he's an advisor to mitt romney's campaign, and the democratic senator brian dorgan. also author of "blowout". i want to get to some other stuff, but bill clinton out there campaigning for barack obama in florida, pennsylvania, ohio. if he does that, that's huge? >> i think it's important, because barack obama has trouble connecting with the working men and women in florida, ohio and
pennsylvania. when you got 38 months of unemployment above 8% and the economy is suffering, bill clinton can certainly be a help. barack obama needs all the help he can get. >> i assume you've already endorsed the president of the united states for the democratic ticket? >> barack obama in my judgment has been a president that has done a lot of good things for this country and i think he's going to be re-elected. >> and bill clinton all the more important with his windchill as sitting secretary of state cannot go out there and aggressively campaign, do fund-raisers, that's not diplomatic. so he's going to have to carry a lot of that work for the president. the war of words on this first anniversary of osama bin laden's death. here's what the president said today. i'll play the clip. >> as far as my personal role in
what other folks would do, i just recommend that everybody take a look at people's previous statements, in terms of whether they thought it was appropriate to go into pakistan and take out bin laden. i assume that people meant what they said when they said it. that's been at least my practice. i said that i would go after bin laden if we had a clear shot at him and i did. if there are others who have said one thing and now suggest they do something else, then i would go ahead and let them explain. >> he's referring to that comment that mitt romney said what four years ago, it's not worth moving heaven and earth and spending billions of dollars just trying to catch one person. >> the sentence after that was that we need a plan to defeat
global terrorism. >> it's worth executing an effective strategy to effect global violent jihad and i have a way of doing that. and the question was wouldn't the u.s. be safer if bin laden were caught? romney said, yes, but a very insignificant increase in safety by virtue of replacing bin laden with someone else. he goes on to talk got ayman al zawahri. >> let me say that romney would have taken out osama bin laden and fixed the economy. they're looking at the obama ad on in and they said it was despicable. this is the time when everybody should be celebrating. any day we're not talking about the economy is a good day for barack obama, it's. >> this president made a very gutsy call, he brought to justice a guy that murdered thousands of americans and was out there for nine years, living
in a compound the last six, apparently. but he brought them to justice and there was some risk to that. but it was also about what mitt romney said. in another circumstance, raised questions about whether we have the right to go into pakistan, for example. we don't have the right to go after someone that murdered thousands of americans, of course we have that right and this president understood it and made a gutsy decision to do it. >> foreign policy, whether it comes from pakistan, whether it comes from iran, or north korea, a treaty a couple of weeks ago saying they're going to give food and they're not going test missiles, boom, three weeks later, they're testing missiles. this is a president who's failed the economy. >> it was more than about barack obama, it was the men and women of the armed forces. we should be celebrating this. >> senator, no one should question whether or not the president of the united states should say, you know what?
i got a tough call, i made a gutsy call and the united states, we killed osama bin laden. should he be using that as a political advertisement suggesting that romney would not necessarily have done that. >> mitt romney implied himself that he didn't know that we had the right or the ability to go into these countries. let me make this point to my friend norm. this president, president obama has wound down the war in iraq, number one, number two has begun to remove troops from afghanistan, number three, went and found and got and brought to justice osama bin laden. don't tell me this president has a foreign policy that doesn't work. he does, anding in my judgments been a fine president and he's going to win the re-election. >> thanks very much for coming in. we're learning stunning new details about secret al qaeda attack plans that were, get this, hidden inside a porn
video. stand by, nic robertson has the details. and man losing his balance and plunging from a very tall structure at a concert, we'll tell you what happened. [ male announcer ] the cadillac cts sport sedan was designed with near-perfect weight balance from front to back... and back to front. ♪ giving you exceptional control from left to right... and right to left. ♪ the cadillac cts. ♪ we don't just make luxury cars. we make cadillacs.
>> activists say 20 people are dead and about 100 people injured in an explosion and two of the blasts were car bombs. there was heavy shelling in the capital of damascus. and crews are searching for survivors after a passenger ferry sank in india, at least four -- about 100 people are still believed to be missing. a thunderstorm likely caused the wooden ferry to sink shortly before docking. the end yaindian army has been in to help with one of those rescues. all three indexes were down today making april the worst month so far this year, the dow jones industrial average dropped 15 points today and finished the month, the s&p 500 and the nasdaq, ended the month in red.
and check out this terrifying video. a man in australia falling at a concert, he snuck past security to climb the scaffolding and then lost his balance and plummeted to the ground, slamming into metal bars on his way down. fortunately australian tv said he jumped right up and went to the hospital. yeah, wolf, apparently this guy is okay. and you know, this is one of those things, things not to do when you attend a concert. >> you think he might have had a beer or two before doing that? do you think he was a little excited? >> it is entirely, entirely possible. just, again, folks, don't try that at home. >> don't try that at home at all. coming up we have stunning new details coming into "the situation room" got secret al qaeda attack plans that were actually hidden inside a porn video. our own nic robertson has the
story. and the trial of a man who wanted to be president of the united states. new details on how john edwards allegedly tried to hide his pregnant misstress. for holdoligrip because my dentures fit well. before those little pieces would get in between my dentures and my gum and it was uncomfortable. even well-fitting dentures let in food particles. super poligrip is zinc free. with just a few dabs, it's clinically proven to seal out more food particles so you're more comfortable and confident while you eat. so it's not about keeping my dentures in, it's about keeping the food particles out. [ charlie ] try zinc free super poligrip. ♪ ♪ ♪ ♪ that should do it. enjoy your new shower.
secretary of state hillary clinton leaves for china tonight where she will meet with top diplomatic authorities in beijing. also a story that potentially could spell some serious trouble for the communist party in china. it's a story erin burnett has been out front on. tell us what's going on here, because a lot of our viewers have not necessarily been paying attention. >> it boils down to this, a man who's a very senior communist official, actually might have been the next president of china, that is how significant this man was. you see them there. there was a power struggle. his right hand man apparently tried to get asylum with the u.s. embassy. they did not get that asylum, but he and his wife have not been seen for more than a month,
ostensibly in chinese government hands, no one exactly knows what happened, but bill haywood, the businessman who died, now apparently the wife of bocelai, may have poisoned him with cyanide. there's a very serious question in china about with corruption, who is in power and who is rising. today there may be a so-called written confession from the wife. apparently there could be a confession coming out where she talks about what happened, whether she was in the room. we don't know if that will be the case, but that's what we're hearing now, it's a very serious question from bill clinton and tim geithner, our treasury secretary going to china this week, how to bring it up. and then there's the activist who may be right now at the u.s. embassy, hillary clinton when she's in china, doesn't like to
talk about human rights abuses. she likes to back off and be very quiet about that. that may not be possible this time around. >> erin is going to be all over it later tonight "out front" 7:00 p.m. eastern on cnn. al qaeda attack plans hidden inside pornography videos. also history made in new york city, we're going to take you to manhattan's new and tallest building. you know what's exciting? graduation.
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jack's joining us again with "the cafferty file." question this hour, democrats fear another bush, jeb bush, should they? do you? the mention of the name makes me break out in a cold sweat. americans should not forget about the -- knowing that george w. bush is still walking around a free man after destroying so many lives and sending 4,000 soldiers to their deaths is as disgusting as it gets. i would certainly fear another bush and justifiably so.
>> bud writes, jeb -- he looks like he's a nice guy, so to answer your question, democrats probably would rather not have to deal with him. this election is fast turning into of the picked a pile of garbage that smells the least situation. dale in massachusetts, the only thing to fear from another bush is the knee-jerk faith-based irrational policies. religion doesn't work in policies and government. if it isn't all the terror stuff, it's the fear that iran at all will think at some point that the whole world has to go see god or allah in one single radiation induced event. pe
pete in georgia says, are you serious? dt in minnesota writes, the whole world does, we put another goof ball in office who thinks it's play time. one more leader who only occasions about his rich buddies and we're done for. and jan writes from south carolina says another bush scares the heck out of me. my guess is jeb bush will be around at some point in the future, but maybe not this cycle. >> 2016, it's only four years away. that's not far. coming up in our next hour, using pornography to relay plans for terror attacks, it's a shocking al qaeda tactic that is just now being revealed. and dramatic testimony for the trial of john edwards, new details of how he allegedly tried to get others to hide his pregnant misstress. and a symbolic milestone
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twin towers, the freedom tower has just become new york's tallest building. poppy, how did it go? >> reporter: it was an incredible day here in new york, wolf. just the sense of pride in the city. i want to pan up so you can see, we're talking 100 floors at one world trade center now, 1,271 feet. they put that steel beam on top about 2:00 this afternoon, it made this building about two feet taller than the empire state building. there was a press conference today, i'll let you take a listen to what they said. >> by the time we reach the top of the building in the coming weeks, i think that asia may be in full view. all kidding aside, it's been a long, difficult journey over many years to achieve this significant milestone, new york and the new york-new jersey region has never seen a more
complex construction project. not simply for the sheer physical challenges it has presented and there have been many, but also the emotional significance of this site. and that is true, wolf, it is very emotionally significant, one man javier biked over to me and said i worked at the world trade center until about three months before the attacks and i think the new building is simply beautiful. >> i really think it's just an overall coming together and unity for everybody and it's a great memorial for anybody who was alive during that time and shows a lot of innovation of things to come. >> we will survive, we will resurface and we can do this. so it's a pride thing. as as american, but more importantly, as a new yorker.
>> reporter: absolutely, wolf, we still got a ways to go, about a year and a half left until this is finished, but 7 1/2 years of construction hit a major, major milestone in new york. >> i know you have been inside that structure, that was that like? >> it was incredible. you just can't even believe the enormity of it. we'll roll some video as you can see. we went up to the 76th floor in august. the amount of people working, thousands and thousands of workers around the clock. they never stopped working on this building for seven-plus years. they gave us some interesting numbers. 30,000 tons of steel, 190,000 cubic jards yards of concrete, they're not even done yet. and you're in "the situation roo room", happening now, the trial of one-time presidential hopeful john edwards. new details on how a former aid
and his wife were asked to hide senator edwards' mistress. and the coded files hidden inside a porn video seized from a suspect in europe. and they're catching out to apply for jobs, but at least there are some jobs to be had. is it a sign the economy is getting better? we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world, i'm wolf blitzer, you're in "the situation room." dramatic testimony today of a trial of a man who might become president, the former white house hopeful john edwards who was accused of using hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations to conceal his affair with a campaign videographer. new details on how edwards allegedly tried to get others to hide his pregnant misstress.
joe johns is joining us now from north carolina. joe, there are new details emerging today on the infamous sex tape of rielle hunter and john edwards. >> reporter: that's right, wolf, the whole court trying to get a court trying to get a handle on that infamous sex tape. it's already been a subject of a civil litigation. it's clear it's not going to be shown in open court. but the defense asserts it might actually call andrew young back to ask him a number of questions about it, how he got it, whether he stole the tape, or whether he was trying to sell the tape for money and so on. all this as the wife of andrew young was on the stand today asserting that john edwards from the very beginning was trying to save his presidential campaign. it's been years, but you can still see the anger and pain in sherry young, whose husband john
young was john edwards fixer. mrs. young explained publicly what she was told when she was told edwards allegedly wanted her husband to take a false claim that he fathered a child with edwards mistress reyal hunter. the first thing in my mind was how edwards could ask one more thing of us. at first she said absolutely not. but right before the iowa caucuses, she said she sat in on a conference, mid-december 2007, between edwards, and rielle's -- this is it, this is our time, over and over about the campaign. but she said edwards also mentioned he didn't want his wife elizabeth who had been rediagnosed with cancer to find out. sherry young said she decided to go along with the cover-up story because if she didn't, the edwards presidential campaign would explode.
sherry young also described how she felt when asked to endorse and deposit checks into her account from the wealthy edwards benefactor, buddy mellon who were asked to pay some of hunters medical expenses. she said edwards talked to campaign lawyers who said it was legal. she also described whirlwind travel around the holidays between 2007 and 2008 and private planes with rielle hunter to escape the media. from raleigh, north carolina to ft. lauderdale, to illinois, to aspen, colorado, to san diego and then back to aspen. sherry young also described bizarre moments with rielle hunter. when edwards pregnant mistress arrived at her house in north carolina, mrs. young said ms. hunter took a spin in the industry way and announced, i'm
here. at another point, she said hunter ordered a ruben sandwich from a restaurant in colorado and when the dressing on the sandwich wasn't right, rielle hunter picked up the cell phone and called her spiritual advisor in california to ask him to fix it. she also asked for several thousand dollars to pay the spiritual advisor for his expenses. she's clearly looking forward to the cross-examination because they want to attack her testimony as unreliable, because so much of it came secondhand. >> joe, we'll check back with you tomorrow. meanwhile, let's turn now to some stunning new revelations about secret al qaeda attack plans, hidden inside a porn video. the digitized coded files give
us some details of future threats. they're all tied to a pair of al qaeda suspects on trial for allegedly plotting for bloody attacks. here's cnn's senior international correspondent nic robertson. >> reporter: as u.s. navy s.e.a.l.s were preparing to storm bin laden's infamous compound in pakistan, two of the al qaeda troops were sneaking out on a mission to cause carnage, they were headed to berlin. but not long after they returned to europe, one of them was being questioned at this police station. he was arrested and searched. and hidden in his underwear, police found memory reporting devices like this. buried deep in the devices was a pornographic video and hidden inside files inside that are
what police believe are more than 100 secret al qaeda documents. documents that included detailed accounts of the planning, for some of al qaeda's biggest attacks and ideas for future operations apparently drawn up by some of the terror groups most senior operatives three years ago. >> according to the german federal criminal police, must have been written by the inner core of al qaeda. >> reporter: an investigative journalist works for the paper and was among the first to study the documents. attacks like the one in mumbai in pakistan in 2008 when militants on a suicide mission stormed three hotels. killing more than 160 people.
okay, all right, we're -- >> reporter: and another plan, the most chilling yet. >> he says that we could hijack a passenger ship on the sea and then use it to pressurize the public. what he most likely means, that they would then start executing passengers on those ships and demand the release of particular prisoners. >> reporter: they would press passengers in orange jump suits, mimicking al qaeda prisoners in gitmo, executions would be quickly uploaded to an al qaeda website. also in the plans documented title future works to flood europe with trained terrorists and overwhelm counter terrorism agencies. >> the author seems to be convinced that al qaeda should be pursuing a two-track strategy of low cost, low damage attacks and large scale attacks. >> like 911? >> yes.
the reason being that if al qaeda were to pursue only large scale attacks and those are followed, then they are nothing. >> reporter: and that's where these two men sent back to europe fit into al qaeda's planning. this man seen in a militant video threatening germany and this 22-year-old, the man found with the memory sticks, german prosecutors said their job was to recruit a network of suicide attackers. >> we don't know actually what these two young men were actually up to, but there is information in these two files that would make it plausible to assume that they were talking about a mumbai style attack. >> reporter: they were in berlin and denied being a part of an al
qaeda organization. they said that al qaeda is not only thinks about the future, but elaborate -- u.s. intelligence sources tells cnn this information is pure gold but it gives details of some of al qaeda's most dangerous attacks, including the attack on the london subway seven years ago. 52 were killed, several hundred injured. the mastermind of that attack, rasheed ralph, a british member of al qaeda, in one of the documents found in berlin, he spells out his role in that
attack, ralph writes he was in the room, offcamera, he set up a computer, with a scripted statement. ralph also reveals there was a short list of three targets. the bank of england, the g-8 summit that would be taking place in scotland and the london subway. they picked the subway because it required less explosives. ralph's big take away from the success of this team was the time he spent with them helping them memorize codes so they could communicate securely, teaching them counter surveillance techniques to switch their phones, how to use e-mail accounts and internet chats. he also reveals that two of the bombers were sure they were being watched by british intelligence because some of their associates had been arrested in connection with another plot. they acted up that life was normal, going to the movies, joking outloud a lot. a subsequent inquiry in britain found that the intelligence
service mi-5 were aware of the two men and their connections, but didn't think they posed a threat. even as london was recovering from that terrible stay. ralph was planning a devastating follow-up. >> and nic robertson is joining us now from london. nic, these al qaeda plans included a ship hijacking with executi executions, here's the question. are plots like this still possible even though bin laden is dead? >> reporter: they seem to be. and certainly one of the things that al qaeda was laying out there in that document was the mumbai style attack. and if you look at what happened in europe over the past couple of years, the arrests in germany, late 2010, seem to be a mumbai style plot, these people who were arrested last year in germany, they seem to have come to recruit suicide attackers and they were involved in a mumbai
style plot. so what al qaeda has laid out in that document is it's plan, they still appear to be sticking to those plans. al qaeda's difficult is it's capability, the quality of the troops they get, and the quality of the handlers, rasheed ralph, one of their best al qaeda handlers, according to u.s. intelligence is dead. but if they have the capability, they will push through and the issue here is, do they have the capability, maybe they don't have it today, wolf, but in yemen and in libya, they're setting up more training camps so you cannot rule it out. >> nic, thank you so much. nic doing wonderful reporting for us, on this the first anniversary of bin laden's death. those al qaeda documents reveal new details on to the terror group's future plans. we'll reveal them 8:00 p.m. eastern for our north american viewers, only here on cnn.
a first for the obama administration, publicly admitting it uses drones to target terrorists and that's not all we're learning about the controversial program. two really prime ministers, the current one and very different opinions on what to do as far as iran is concerned. who's right? i'll discuss with a top american expert. and occupy wall street making a come back, which could impact your life tomorrow. hich helped students and teachers get better results in ap courses. together, they raised ap test scores 138%. just imagine our potential... ...if the other states joined them. let's raise our scores. let's invest in our teachers and inspire our students. let's solve this.
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jack cafferty is here with "the cafferty file." >> contrary to statements that he's made in the past, president obama's using the one-year anniversary of the raid that killed osama bin laden in his re-election campaign. a web video narrated by former president bill clinton praises mr. obama's decision to order the killing of the al qaeda leader. vice president joe biden in a
speech used a bumper sticker slogan that thanks president obama, quote, bin laden's dead and general motors is alive. biden suggests it might have been the other way around were mitt romney the president. so much for what the obama white house was saying when bin laden was killed. in the days following the bin laden raid, president obama said he decided not to release photos of the terrorist corpse, saying, quote, we don't trot this stuff out as trophies and we don't need to spike the football. and four years ago, then candidate obama accused clinton of playing the politics of fear like george w. bush. none of this is lost on the president's critics, it'sthat h turning -- the real tragedy here is probably the president obama by politicizing the raid that
got bin laden is managing to upstage the navy s.e.a.l.s who are the real heroes. here's the question, should president obama use bin laden's death in his campaign. go to cnn.com/caffertyfile or go to cnn's facebook page. meanwhile a top white house official is defending the use of drones to target suspected terrorists and kill them. in a speech in washington today, the counter terrorism avisor to the president says the strikes are legal and designed to save american lives. chris lawrence, we're getting new insight into how the decision is made to carry out these drone strikes designed to kill suspected terrorists. tell us all about it. >> this is probably the most in depth description of the review
process that we have ever heard publicly. brennan says president obama has strushl instructed his team to be more open about how and when the u.s. dispatches these drones it's a program shrouded in secrecy, but now obama is going public with how they de -- >> there is no more consequence shall decision than deciding to use lethal force against another human being. >> counter terrorism advisor john brennan reveals there is a threat threshold that the u.s. uses to gauge whether someone can be targeted, such as a leader of al qaeda. the person needs to possession skills that are being used in a planned attack. >> these terms are very vague. >> human rights activist says
that he wonders if anyone transporting goods could be killed. he says brennan's criteria could come up short. >> this program is being conducted in compliance with international and domestic law. >> brennan says the national security team asked several questions before authorizing a strike. is this person a significant threat to american interests? is capture not feasible? and have we thought through the inintended consequences? >> when considering lethal force, we are mindful that there are important checks that allow us to act in foreign territories. >> but just weeks after pakistani lawmakers ordered an end to american drone strikes, another military hideout was hit on sunday. >> we discussed, we debate, we disagree. >> reporter: brennan says the decision to target someone doesn't have to be unanimous. and some officials morally
struggle with their decisions. >> i know i have and i will continue to struggle with it as long as i remain in counter terrorism. >> brennan also says that he's very mindful that the u.s. is the only one to deploy these droens on an extensive basis, but more and more other countries are gaining that capability and they will use the u.s. and its drone attacks as a press accident. >> if the u.s. can use these targeted assassinations with these drones, other countries will follow suit saying if the united states of america can go out and kill folks they suspect as being terrorists, we can do out as well. >> that's exactly his point, that other nations will use the u.s.'s use of force as a precedent and he made the point of saying not every nation that gains the drone capability will have the same regard for loss of civilian life and other things
that have to be considered. >> chris lawrence at the pentagon. thank you. it was some of the worst flooding in u.s. history, now it's a reason for a lawsuit against the u.s. army corps of engineers. we'll explain what's going on. new jersey's governor talking about a possible vice presidential slot on the republican ticket. we'll update you ona as well. wewe'r're e ononlyly a abob. fifindndining g yoyou u ththe e isis a allll w we e do. wewelclcomome e toto h hot. or creates another laptop bag or hires another employee, it's not just good for business, it's good for the entire community.
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here's brian todd with details. >> reporter: he's been warning about iran's nuclear ambitions for years, hinting that he might order a pre-emptive israeli strike on iran's nuclear facilities. but now benjamin net tan t-- netanyahu is getting a lot of push back. >> also not rush for certain military actions which are not essential at this point. >> reporter: but it goes beyond olmir. i ran has not decided to go the extra mile in making a bomb. and listen to what mayor dagon former director of the israeli
intelligence. >> an attack on iran, before you're exploring all other aappropriates is not the right way how to do. >> reporter: the governor also called iran's regime irrational. i talked with doug miller who advised six secretaries of states, democrats and republicans on the middle east. >> there's more serious talk about attacking iran. why is that? >> because you have a political community that is deeply divided. i think people understand exactly how risky this is, how consequential it might be, if there's no success, and there's a lot of confusion as to what success actually means. >> reporter: his defense minister ahud barack is at his side all the time. when a syrian nuclear facility was bombed in 2007 by israel, and in 1991 when israel bombed
hussein's nuclear reactor in iraq, no one said anything before hand. >> i think this is part of a carefully orchestrated campaign, to threaten war, to get the international community to focus. primarily to get the united states to assume a certain measure of responsibility. israelis would love to see us take care of this problem for them. >> miller says the israelis have calculated this to get the u.s. to shift from a strategy of containing iran to preventing it from getting a nuclear weapon. and he says it has worked. president obama hand the administration has gotten tougher on iran's nuclear program. when i asked if this is specifically from benjamin netanyahu, he only said, quote, it would be a mistake to read that into it. >> it's not the first time there's been a determined israel over a potential move like
there. >> one journalist pointed out that assaad and the head of nato's intelligence arm were against striking iran's nuclear reactor. so there's been precedent for this, even if there's internal discord, netanyahu could order the strike. >> here's someone with two decades of experience in helping shape u.s. policy in the middle east. dennis ross, he's now with the washington institute for near east policy. you recently left the obama administration, where you dealt with iran and all these matters. can you explain, because i'm sure you understand all these conflicts messages that we're getting from israel's high ranking leaders. >> most israelis including those
who may be debating the issue right now don't question whether or not iran's nuclear weapon would be an es -- a risk to israel. >> when you hear the prime minister and defense minister say one thing and the leaders of the intelligence and top generals say something very different. >> this has been a discussion that's been going on for quite some time internally at the highest levels of the israeli government. by the way, the very same people who are talking sbichl matly are always talking to us. they had a systematic, very high level dialogue, with all the people in the military establishment, the intelligence establishment, the defense minister and the prime minister. many of the areas of agreement and disagreement that we see in public right now, we certainly were hearing before in private. this discussion is not a new
discussion, but is the reality of possibly taking nuclear reactors take something that's is more real and is closer, it's not a surprise to me that we're hearing more of this in public. >> do you believe that prime minister netanyahu and president obama, as far as iran is concerned, tactical dealings with iran are on the same page? >> i do. when it comes to the objective, the objective is prevention. >> the long-term objective is preventing iran from having a nuclear bomb and not getting into containment or anything like that. but how to prevent iran from getting a nuclear bomb, are obama and netanyahu on the same page. >> between days and weeks and years, there's a space. the president following the meeting with netanyahu said the
diplomatic window is closing. so there's a space for diplomacy to work. there's a difference between the two only in one respect. if diplomacy comes on too long, they could lose their military option, and still face potential threat not yet knowing when the united states might act. >> but do you know if the u.s. has a strong military option? does israel have the ability to really destroy any hope of iran developing a nuclear bomb. >> first of all, neither we for the israelis have any hope of seeking to destroy a nuclear bomb. they crossed the point where they can do this entirely on their own without anybody's help. so nobody has the ability to destroy and set back their program in a way that can't be reconstituted. we and is israelis simply have the ability to delay it, set it back. we can wait longer than the
israe israelis, but do the israelis have the capability to set back the program? yes. >> set back for how long. >> probably two years. >> and if the u.s. did an air strike, how long would that delay? >> three years. there's a whole context, you have to make a ze decision, you have to establish resources, this is an enormous effort on the part of the israelis, they couldn't turn over overnight and resume that they could been reconstitutioned. contact matters. negotiations have been trieded and failed and then forces used, the ability of the international community to maintain the isolation and the kinds of sanctions that would make it even harder for the iranians to reconstitute, so if you wait until the israelis have exhausted all the other options, the ability to set it back longer is possible.
>> continue the economic diplomatic sanctions t pressure, the third option, covert operations, kill iranian nuclear scientists, use covert operations to stop them from doing this. covert operations, is that the most realistic? >> i don't want to get into details. but you can say there's a variety of different steps and options that have been reviewed. the israeli intelligence official has been very vocal in the fact that there are other means for delaying the iranians from proceeding. the fact of the matter is, if you're going to succeed in preventing the eiranians from doing this, you have the kind of transparency that ensures they can't cheat and they can't break out. if that fails, you're looking at a military option, which is then
backed by a diplomatic operation, there's no such thing as destroying their capability of developing a nuclear program, but they can set it back. hundreds of people desperate for work and they're going to extreme measures right now for a small chance in getting a job. also delta airlines trying to buy its way out of high gas prices. stand by, we'll explain. 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. ♪
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solar-powered home energy system, which can cut your heating and cooling bills in half. call now to get up to 1,375 dollars in rebates. or zero percent financing for 18 months. plus download our free lennox mobile app with an energy-savings calculator to show how much you'll save... with lennox. innovation never felt so good. a new lawsuit alleges flooding in nashville, tennessee two years ago was caused by negligence on the part of the federal government. lisa sylvester is monitoring that. also some of the top stories in "the situation room" right now, lisa? >> hi, wolf, a hotel chain is leading a de -- according to to the tennesseean newspaper, the company that owns the gaylord opryland hotel is demanding $250
million. it alleges the army corps of engineers should not have opened this -- and a subsidiary company of delta airlines is paying $150 million to buy a fuel refinery complex south of philadelphia. the company says that the facility whether eventually provide about 80% of delta's jet fuel needs in the united states. delta's ceo says it will reduce the airlines fuel costs by $300 million per year. and ohio is ordering five exotic animals be returned to the widow of a man who set them loose before killing himself last year. 56 animals were released, but most were killed by authorities. the five surviving animals include two leopards, two mon y monkeys and a brown bear. they could be back at the farm they were released from as early as tomorrow. and an australian billionaire is commissioning a chinese shipyard to build a replica of the titanic.
the ship will reportedly be modeled after the original, but equipped with modern navigation technology and according to a spokesman it will make it's maiden voyage from london to new york in 2016. there's a lot of people who have titanic fever, so we'll see. >> he's a billionaire, i'm not. thanks very much lisa. desperate for a paycheck, you'll meet someone who flew across the country to camp out for a job. zap technology.
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with lennox. innovation never felt so good. the occupied movement is urging americans to stay home from work an refrain from shopping or banking tomorrow to honor workers around the world. the occupy movement was founded last year to protest what they described as corporate greed and economic inequality. but occupy supporters are not the only ones disappointed in the economy. let's bring in cnn's mary snow who's work this story as well. mary, what are you finding out. >> a group handed out hundreds
of applications for only a few dozen positions in a training program. some people camped out for nearly a week, that includes one man who flew in from arizona last tuesday. >> reporter: no sign of an improving economy here in queens, new york. more than 500 people applying for a shot at 50 slots at a local ironworkers union. many of these people have been camped out for days, hoping for the promise of a steady job with health care. and it's not just men. >> i have two degrees in business and i'm here. you know, so i graduated from monroe in 2010, monroe college and i haven't been able to find a job in my field. >> i have a company in arizona and i'm shutting it down because i can't afford the insurance on it anymore. >> economy is rough, times are hard, people are just taking their chance. >> reporter: despite the long wait, some see a silver lining
in the jobs picture. rich mildrem is one of them. he says while the economy still has a long way to go to recover, the fact that it's slow and steady is a good thing. >> we're seeing a lot of job growth, and in construction, we're seeing it normally higher in other areas, which is good news from a construction front. >> reporter: electricians, plumbers and roofs have more demangds as the economy improves. the unemployment rate for college graduates is 4.2%. that nearly doubles for people without a college degree. the economy grew slower than expected in the first quarter. it's raised questions about whether the recovery is for real, or whether it's backsliding. and that's why economists will be closely watching april's jobs report out friday. >> this is going to be critical, both for the health of our
economy and for political reason. so all the eyes will be on the job report on friday. >> reporter: whether that report shows strong growth or not, only 50 out of the hundreds here will get a job. and when the april jobs report does come out on sfrfriday, economists are expecting 162,000, but that number should be close to 300,000. but they're just looking for jobs numbers that won't fall below what's expected. >> getting a job is like winning the lottery. should president obama use osama bin laden's death in his political campaign? and new york governor's chris christi talking about a possible vice presidential slot on the republican ticket. çñv,>wvs[rk÷=$fí]çffs8rkaglcçñ
the press. republican consultant and contributor alex cos ti ano said it is not true and rachel maddow passionately disagreed with. alex is doubling down on his argument writing this, quote, maddow restated an old and discredited liberal myth that women are paid less than men. only 77% for the same labor. the fact is, women are paid less than men in america but not for the same work. they are paid less for other reasons. first, they take different jobs than men and secondly, as kay hymowitz, her recent wall street journal article women earn less because they work fewer hours. he makes the point they're opting to spend less time at work because in a world because of children. the head of the epa's office in dallas is resigning over comments he made about how he deals with oil and gas companies that don't comply with
regulations. a video from 2010 shows the official comparing his methods to roman soldiers that would krus if i enemies to make an example and the epa is calling the comments deeply unfortunate. chris christie may be interested in running for vice president after all. he previously said he has no interest in joining the republican ticket but he is leaving wiggle room. speaking at a school event, he said he would be willing to talk with mitt romney about the job adding, quote, he mate be able to convince me. wolf. >> suspect that's not going to happen. that's just me. we'll see what happens on the vp front. we'll have a lot of time to think about that and discuss it over the next several months. thank you. back to jack right now for the cafferty file. >> he could arguably not most interesting thing that could happen in the entire campaign. he is a fascinating fellow. if he agreed to get on the particular wet romney, would be
a giant. biden versus christy, come on, it would be terrific. he has to lose weight, though. the question this hour should president obama use osama bin laden's death in his campaign? david writes some but only as a single accomplishment and he pulled the trigger and it was on his watch. the folks that got bin laden were a long line of analysts and operatives predating obama's involvement and ending with a small group of life on the line seals in training when obama was still teaching law school. he needs to guard against allowing the notation to mofr into a swagger. we'll never know the names. people to really appreciate for this. bo know in florida writes he has to. he has nothing else to run on. he has no credible foreign policy, no energy policy, no economic policy. hugh writes president obama gave the order and the seals got it done. telling the troourt is never a cheap shot. ted writes that now that bill clinton is in charge he will
tell him to say whatever the people to want hear. take all the credit yourself, never mention the military, fbi, cia and all the wo, that president bush started after 9/11. just let people think you did it by yourself. as far as the other problems facing the country, blame those on someone else. paul writes, of course he should, conservatives don't like him mentioning it because it is something they can't attack him on. you can't attack him on a lack of leadership and then cry foul when he holds up an example of it in response. mo writes he can use it and it doesn't automatically mean he will be re-elected. ats spray official way to get to us vote for him. while you're correct in labeling the president a hypocrite, given what he said in the days following bin laden's death, i think it is absolutely fair game politically. it is one of the his great accomplishments. if you want to read more about this, go to the blog, or through our post on the facebook page. >> he did say, romney, it is not worth moving heaven and earth
and spending billions of dollars trying to catch one person. tough business. >> obama also said we don't spike the football on this stuff. there is no spiking the football. >> he said that as well. you're right. >> thank you, jack. jeanie moos with memorable mug shots coming up recently, students from 31 countries took part in a science test. the top academic performers surprised some people. so did the country that came in 17th place. let's raise the bar and elevate our academic standards. let's do what's best for our students-by investing in our teachers. let's solve this.
tattoos making mug shots more memorable. here is jeannie moosz. >> it is a mug shot with a message. god on her forehead she joins the ranks of men in mug shots with tattoos proclaiming then genius or reject. >> that's what i like about it. it looks like an actual stamp and doesn't look like he went with the word rejekt. >> a rejekted mortgage application says the website the smoking gun. editors are mug shot connoisseurs. they even appreciate the f word. >> it is simple. it says what it needs to say and guarantees you probably limited employment if you ever get out of jail.
>> they compiled tattoos ranging from a toe tag to a gunn in the waistband. jesse thornhill's showed off implanted horns along with piercings and tattoos. >> i am a bit of odd ball, give you that. >> the smoking gun guys are looking for more in a mug shot. >> i want a message. i want somebody to say something. >> for instance, this father and son duo. >> father went with get-r-d u.n. and the father went with psycho. >> but he can blink a not so subtle code. >> too bad the eyes are open. if they were closed. >> he has the word [ bleep ] tattooed on the eyelids. >> he was begging for a licking when he turned himself in. >> lick me is not a tattoo, it was written with marker but not what you want to go into jail written on your forehead either way. >> robert norton kennedy was booked for assault sporting this bible verse, with god all things
are possible, please forgive me if i say or do anything stupid. two months later he was arrested again and had added a few more bible verse citations which brings us back to god, the ohio officials say jamie callaway had taken a liking to someone we encountered previously serving time. >> a fell mail corrections officer she was stalking. >> for moshe a decade in youtube postings. >> and she called herself the god-ologist and one poster noted when she looked in the mirror it would reason dog. well, genius, not quite. >> that's it for me. thanks very much for joining us. i am wolf blitzer in "the situation room." the news continues next on cnn. good evening. i am john king. mitt romney says he would have ordered the raid that led to the death of