tv Starting Point CNN July 4, 2012 7:00am-9:00am EDT
people all across the country, they are waiting, waiting for the electricity to come back on and facing another day of intense heat. 20 people now have died since last thursday when fierce storms ripped the east in the midwest. and take a look. these are the states that are still waiting for power to return, you have west virginia, still more than 300,000 customers in the dark. ohio, virginia, similar shape. and power companies, they say they are out there, they say they are repairing the transmitters and lines faster than expected, but their estimates show customers could be waiting until the weekend for electricity. as we mentioned, it is hot all the while. those unbearable temperatures keep spreading. 14 states under heat advisory today. brian todd is in charleston, west virginia where it's supposed to be 95 degrees there. i see the tree behind you. i'm sure folks in the neighborhood, no power. another big issue, a lot of people don't have food. >> that's right, brooke, you
were talking about people waiting on the power companies and waiting for the power to get up. but this is what's keeping them waiting. seems like this all over the state. this oak tree snapped in half, took down this power line here, disabled this power pole up here then you've got a domino effect throughout neighborhoods like this. power officials telling us these trees down are a huge obstacle. we're right in the middle of a road here. you see the double yellow lines and this may not be cleared for a little while. that is impeding power crews as they try to move around. you mention food shortages, an official told me not too long ago this may be one of the worst food crises in a long time. they have two main pantries that distribute nonperishable food to the people in need, they are empty and starting a food drive trying to get food and water to people. water pressure is a huge issue. some of the pumps are fueled by electricity, they are done so water pressure is a big problem.
people need to boil water. the national guard is getting out offering people help in getting water and boiling water and things like that. that is a logistical problem as well. how are people staying cool in this? we talked to residents in vf west virginia. any way they can at this point. >> it's very hot. i'm been setting on the porch since last night. >> it's pretty bad. the heat is the main thing, can't keep our apartment cool. i've never been without electric this long. >> reporter: and some residents may not get power back until this weekend, brooke. right now we're told about between a quarter and a third of the customers in this state are still without power but crews are working feverishly to get them back online. >> what a fourth of july for these folks. we're going to talk to the governor of west virginia later this morning about efforts he and the west virginia national guard are doing to get the folks much needed food. over to virginia, more than
200,000 customers there still waiting for power. electric companies say it could take the entire weekend to flip the lights back on. temperatures expected to hit 100 degrees today. virginia's national guard also out and about going door to door checking on folks most vulnerable. and bill bolling is also running to become virginia's governor in next year's election. he's joining us from the phone. happy fourth of july. you know, i know it's not so happy for a lot of people in your state, 236,000 is the latest number i have in terms of folks without power, really the end of the weekend, that's when they'll get it back on? >> yeah, that's the news for some unfortunate folks. we had about 1.2 million people without power in virginia when the storm hit. about 90% of those have now been restored. we had a lot of reconnections made yesterday and many overnight. so we're now down to somewhere
around 125,000 people without power. but these are in the hardest hit areas in northern virginia and the shenandoah valley of virginia. in some instances, we have 20 or 30 trees down across the same power line at different points in the circuit. for some of these areas, particularly in the very urban and rural areas of the state, we could go into friday, a little bit of saturday before we get everybody restored. >> i know as lieutenant governor, you have to be cool, calm and collected here. i was talking to the mayor of washington, d.c. yesterday and he was very, very blunt saying how fed up he was, just how frustrated are you with the fact that it's still 10%, 10% still don't have lights on? >> i think you have to accent wait the positive. the fact that 90% have been restored over the past three or
four days has been remarkable. remember, this is the largest power outage in the history of our state that was not directly the result of a hurricane. and it's the third largest power outage in the history of the state period. this was a totally unanticipated event. when you have a hurricane coming up the coast, you have -- >> you have days of preparation. >> you can prepare for it. this hit us out of the blue. it's always frustrating when your power is out, particularly when you have 100 degree days but the fact that 90% of our citizens have had the power restored is a positive thing. >> i understand, let me jump in. >> everybody is working as hard as they can to get the other 10% restored as quickly as they can. >> final question to you, we were talking to our contact in west virginia. are you saying the same situation in virnginia? >> local officials are trying to
focus on finding people without power and making sure they have ice for coolers and making sure they have water to drink and they are taking advantage of cooling centers that are set up all across states that are still impacted. that's the biggest challenge we're dealing with right now is just the heat and the impact that that has on folks on the fourth of july. >> lieutenant governor bill bolling, good luck, you have your hands full there in virginia. we appreciate you calling in early this morning. appalachian power, they are bringing in thousands of extra workers from as far as nebraska to try to fix the problem. they estimate power will be restored to 95% of the people by sunday night. but some say, look, that's not good enough. still, take a look at the people who have been waiting in line, five hours in line. just to buy generators at a store that hasn't even had its grand opening yet. charles patton of appalachian
power. good morning to you. you're calling this a major historical disaster. but as far as power restoration, where do you stand right now? >> initially at the peak of the storm, we had approximately 336,000 customers out here in west virginia and that number is now down to 187,000. >> down to 187. in the d.c. area, pepco, one of the main utility company, very much so, bearing the brunt of the blame. system is not efficient, systems haven't been overhauled. in west virginia and virginia, you all are faring better it was compared to the 2009 blizzard. i understand the systems were overhauled. do you see an improvement from '09? >> actually, this storm was twice the damage of the '09
storm. >> twice? >> yes, the '09 storm across our system, we had 222,000 outages for this storm, 570,000 outages across our entire system. and if you look at it over the first 48 hours, we were actually a little bit quicker on the last storm with restoration. but that was largely because of the ability to stage crews. we knew that storm was coming. this storm, however was a surprise to most people. >> you have neighbors states normally can come in and help you, contracted utility workers bearing the brunt as well. it took long are to get states farther away. we'll talk to the governor along with the national guard is working on this big food drive. it's such an issue in west virginia. so my question to you, with folks out of food and very rural parts of the state, how do you prioritize service? >> well, first of all, we look at critical care.
we look at hospitals. we look at water and waste water facilities so we can make sure that our customers in this region do have water, potable water. and then what we try to do is get the biggest bang for our buck, meaning we try to get as many customers on as we can with the next operation that we undertake. >> the last big storm, i understand that the rate payers did have to absorb $18 million in damage over the course of some eight years or so. people are wondering now, charles, will appalachian customers be bearing the brunt financially speaking this time around as well? >> yes, in rate making, when you have unusual situations like this one that are unexpected, those dollars, those costs are not factored into the rates that we charge. so we typically go back with the
oversight of the commission as well as all of the other stake holders and determine what the appropriate amount is to make the company whole. >> charles patton. >> i'm sure you've gotten frustrating phone calls. i appreciate you working on this holiday. thank you. and people across the country are dealing with the fallout from the storms from days ago, the heat this morning, there is a new threat of thunderstorms, let's go to alexandra steele in for rob this morning. i'm afraid to ask about these storms, when and where? >> well, there's really not a huge threat. no severe weather expected today on the whole around the country. no one on in july fourth, many people off, will have a washout. the first thing you know, where are we really seeing the worst of it in terms of power outages and intense heat, in washington and maryland and virginia not going to see a break from the heat, between 95 and 100 today.
no real break until the weekend. in terms of temperatures, 102 in places like kansas city, that's really where the intense heat is. we're looking at -- what brook was referring to, some thunderstorms, there's a lot of moisture in the air, much more so. so it actually for especially people on the eastern seaboard, it's so much more humid, the dew point is just off the charts high. so a lot more humid than it's about although temperatures aren't as hot as they are. in the morning in the northeast, we'll see some showers. then we'll see a break in the afternoon. southeast, a dry start. isolated showers developing in the afternoon. it looks like a lot of these places really will get the fireworks in. things looking good in washington, atlanta, memphis, hot for sure but firework potential is on. it looks like more of a bang than a bust around 9:00 when we see the fireworks begin. >> alexandra, thank, happy fourth of july to you. to poppy harlow now. >> good morning, great to have
you in new york. take a look at this, heartbreaking video of an entire neighborhood going up in flames in colorado springs, sparks and flames jumping from roof to roof, firefighters forced to make tough decisions about which homes to save and which homes will have to burn with high winds keeping them on their toes frm the waldo canyon fire is 70% contained. it is good news but destroyed 350 homes damaged topping $110 million. and the jetblue pilot who was arrested for a wild tirade during a flight in march deemed insane. a judge ruling that 49-year-old clayton osbon is not guilty by reason of insanity. he suffers from a very sear mental illness that impairs his ability to understand his actions. he was subdued after a co-pilot looked him out of the cockpit. an emergency situation,
seven people, including several children were hurt in new hampshire last night when a pile of fireworks exploded on a back porch during a family party. several of the victims actually had to be air lifted to the hospital. the back of the home also caught on fire. neighbors say the homeowner was known for his annual fireworks displays. and security will be very tight later today at fourth of july celebrations in washington, d.c. and in new york. but law enforcement officials say they have no evidence that terrorists are plotting any kind of attacks. according to police, one of the primary concerns in terms of security on this independence day is the possibility of a lone wolf attack. and he'll consume more calories in ten minutes than most of us will all week, joe j chestnut, who holds the official world record for eating 68 hot dogs and buns in ten minutes will try for the sixth straight win this year at nathan's famous hot dog eating contest on coney
eye island. we'll take you live to coney island later in the show. >> what's with the head bob? why is that necessary? >> i don't know why it's necessary. great question. >> i don't want to know why it's necessary i guess. we'll see you later this morning. ahead, a big get real on of all days, fourth of july, a cemetery banning flags on veterans graves, stars and stripes caught unsightly. millions of people traveling on this fourth of july, how you can save money this week and where the real summer travel deals. this is my tune, alabama shakes "hold on." ♪ why not try someplace different every morning? get two times the points on dining in restaurants
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ambien. he had been on medical leave after the accident which he says were caused by seizures. the new york stock exchange is closed for the fourth of july holiday. trading resumes tomorrow and all eyes will be on the very june jobs report and it is scheduled to be released before the opening bell on friday morning. we had a nice close for the stock market yesterday ahead of the holiday. >> thank you so much, poppy, today's "starting point" team, we have richard socarides and writer at new york.com and margaret hoover, author of "american individualism" and former employee of the bush white house and ryan lizza, at the new yorker, gold stars all around. it's a holiday and it's early and a pleasure to be here. >> happy fourth. >> happy fourth of july. >> all sorts of props. >> these were margaret's idea. we were trying to think what we do, red white and blue, we
brought it this morning. millions of people expected to take advantage of the long holiday weekend this fourth of july. aaa predicts more than 42.3 million americans are going to be going more than 50 miles from home. that's nearly a 5% increase from last year. and it could tie the previous high that was set in 2007. if you are among those many travelers out and about or you are planning a summer vacation, we have great ways to save money. courtney scott is a senior editor at travelocity. and she joins us this morning. >> happy fourth. >> we have the red while and blue between the three of us, very nice. >> the gentlemen -- >> if we're talking about the millions of people on the road and i have to throw in what we've been talking about between the wildfires in colorado and horrible situation, multiple states with the power outages, trees down, et cetera, what's it looking like for this weekend, travelwise? >> the reality is that travel is more expensive this weekend and roads are going to be more congested. there's going to be heavier
delays at the airports. but the good news is that as far as travel goes, our call centers are seeing normal calls. no real emergencies for the weekend and even though there are challenges with the fires sean electrical issues, we're going to see a pretty normal, heavy stream of travel this weekend. >> what about in terms of affordability, i don't know if this weekend it's costing folks more and people pinching pennies, are there other weekends that are more affordable for people with kids like ryan lizza. >> historically, fourth of july and labor day going to be more expensive, we have cheaper weekends throughout the rest of the weekend. next weekend is a cheaper weekend to follow. the following weekend after that, also great. in august, the ultimate cheapest weekend is the 24th to the 26th. just before labor day, people are kind of not thinking about that weekend, most people tend to take their families away for labor day. it's a great value. >> was that a good value five minutes ago before you announced
it was the cheapest weekend? >> it's kind of strange, right, that the holiday is on wednesday this year. >> middle of the week. >> when do you go away? most people going away later in the week? >> we see the cheaper time to travel was prior to the holiday and kind of coming back tomorrow. so potentially a lot of people already headed out and then this weekend is a more expensive time to travel. weekends in general are actually not the cheapest time to travel. you want to be more flexible with your dates and try to leave on a thursday, come back on a monday morning. you're really going to see deeper savings there. also, about flexibility, you want to look for multiple airports when you're searching your tools. that way you can really see the full breadth of what's available to you. >> do you ever do that click on the other airports? >> what i do do, the great sites maybe you'll tell us what they are, that where you can sort of search by when you want to go and where you could go most
cheaply or put in a date or put in a destination to find out when to go most cheaply. >> flexible date search is fully available to you. >> that's what it's called. there you go. >> and also, these tools are available on apps, which is a great place to search for travel. >> what are some good ones? >> some of my favorites, there's travelocity's app which i love, great to plan itinerary, finding mobile exclusive hotel deals, this aren't on the site and released daily on the app. gas buddy is fun for road trips. it will give you real time gas prices in whatever destination you're in. >> that is a great app. >> that is awesome. >> incredible, you're driving along, no, go another mile, ten cents cheaper up the road. >> i don't imagine you doing that. >> i would absolutely do that. i'm a bargain shopper. >> come on, john.
>> really sounds like fun, good time, gas buddy. >> flight track pro for keeping track of flights, most comprehensive app. >> tip all of your travel in one place. >> thank you. >> still ahead this morning, a major flag flap at a cemetery in texas. why they are not letting old glory fly on veterans graves. that is our get real. ryan lizza's play list, flaming lips. "it's summertime." homicide of young people in america has an impact on all of us. how can we save these young people's lives? as a police chief, i have an opportunity to affect what happens in a major city. if you want to make a difference, you have to have the right education.
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welcome back, find this first story fascinate, the first in home hiv test have been approved by the fda. they swam their gums and place it in a vile of solution. it will cost about $20. the family of blofd actor andy griffith has laid him to restless than five hours after he passed away, griffith was buried on the north carolina island he calls home. brooke, we'll always remember him in that show, right. >> the two and whistle, the whole deal. thanks, poppy so much. time for our get real. it's fourth of july, a day a lot of people take a moment and thank the men and women of the military for their service and sacrifice, often times like this soldier who you see here, people go to cemeteries and place flags
on grave sites of fallen troops. but here's the but, there's a cemetery in texas and they say nope, you can't put flags on the gravesites, there's a controversial ordinance approved by the city council of mineral wells that says flags are only allowed at graves at the cemetery one week before and after memorial day and veterans day and that takes fourth of july and labor day out of it. bringing you guys in. they are saying it's not just flags people go to the cemeteries and put teddy bears and trinkets that are significant for that particular person but they are saying it becomes unsightly. >> i feel bad for the city council that put this down they were trying to do something that would help the people cleaning up the cemetery. the graves were getting unsightly. one thing you don't do in this country is tell people they can't put flags on gravestones, no matter how good the spirit is behind that idea.
these poor city council members are getting hammered. >> i have a feeling it will be overturned. >> this is crazy, right? if anything you ought to be able to put a flag there. this preoccupation with order that we have sometimes -- >> kind of ridiculous. >> i think it's ridiculous. >> especially on the fourth of july. this has been going on for some time, of course they'll be able to at the end of the day have flags at grave site especially, it's a military cemetery. >> nobody is an anti-flag person here, we think the flag should be able to be at the cemetery. >> they have a meeting july 10th to reconsider the whole thing. >> what are the chances it gets reconsidered? >> pretty high. i'm gg to go with that. >> still ahead, former french president sarkozy in a bit of legal trouble. why police raided his home and offices. surface to air missiles, imagine this, surface to air missiles
sitting on top of the apartment building in london to protect the summer olympic games. a lot of controversy and we'll hear with the folks with the surface to air missiles on their roofs. a warning from the imf about the economic recovery or lack there after. ali velshi with what this means from the rest of this. from ali's playlist, a little brun no mars.
>> the heat wave and power outages continue. more than 1 million waking up without air conditioning, when they need it the most. temperatures expected to be in the mid to high 90s with even more stifling humidity from st. louis all the way to philadelphia. at least 20 people have died since thursday when deadly storms slammed the east and the midwest. meantime, police in france are looking into whether former president sarkozy received illegal campaign contributions. they raided his home and offices yesterday while he was vacationing in canada. they are investigating loreal cosmetic's betten court and the staff to see if they helped during the presidential campaign. the runner up in the election in mexico is demanding a recount. suggests the vote was plagued by irregularities, nieto is the
president elect. they are verifying individual poll results today. intergal laktic fireworks, a solar flare was so powerful it disrupted radio communications over europe and sent electrically charged particles sweeping into space that might pass earth's magnetic field to spark some fireworks. if you understand that last one, that's like bill nye and the whole god particle thing coming up later. >> i'm amazed by technology, that we can take those type of pictures is impressive in and of itself. new concerns, the imf warning congress, you need to act sooner rather than later here or the u.s. could fall back into a recession. in its annual report on the u.s. economy, there could be a economic disaster if the
automatic tax hikes and spending cuts take effect next year, saying failure to reach an agreement on near-term tax and spending policies would trigger a severe fiscal tightening with negative growth early next year and significant negative repercussions on an already fragile world economy. ali velshi is our chief business correspondent and talking a lot about this economic storm. first just to be clear, what is this $4 trillion in expiring tax cuts, spending reductions and here we are talking about this last couple of days. july 11th they are voting on repealing health care when really -- >> this is exactly it. conservatives accuse president obama of spending too much time on health care when he should have been worrying about the economy. this time we have to move off the health discussion. la guard doesn't hang around with a lot of american conserves, they don't want a lecture from the imf. what they are saying is what everybody in the world knows, two things to worry about in
america, job creation and economic growth or cutting deficits and cutting the debt. they are both important but at this point in our economic cycle, one is more important than the other. and the lesson is, deal with the things happening before the end of the year. i would like if this congress dealt with it and not wait until after the election and then deal with deficit cutting and debt later. there's a storm over in europe and storm in washington and it's going to be the perfect storm when it meets and it could send us in a recession. >> you write about this, this is an election year. >> this is going to happen before the elections? >> no, unless we see -- >> the solution is not going to happen. >> unless we see dreadful jobs reports. ali, isn't the real solution here short-term system husbatis? >> there are combinations you can use to bake a cake the problem is we're baking nothing.
we've got three things, the sequestration, all of these across the board cuts will come along because we couldn't make a decision on the debt ceiling. and then we have another debt ceiling debate coming up and we'll wait until the last second until the treasury says there are bills that are not going to get paid. and the third thing is the expiration of the bush tax cuts and other benefits go away. there's a real valid argument as to whether to continue or end the bush tax cuts. we shouldn't be having that argument under dur he is when it's about to happen and recession may set in. >> that's exactly what's going to happen. we'll have the election the first week of november and then thanksgiving and the lame duck congress comes back with maybe a lame duck president or maybe not but they have to figure out how to get through all of this. >> i would love to see people -- >> actually, of course, idealistically we would love to see our government not influenced by the realities of
politics. i talked to people in washington, both in executive agencies and in congress, nobody actually believes sequestration, this flat cut is really going to happen. they think congress can pass the law to cut it or pass a law to put it back in place to prevent the cuts. >> that's true, they can. >> the defense secretary saying these kind of cuts to the defense decht, obama's appointed press secretary saying these cuts will damage the military. >> the problem isn't what might happen or could happen. it's what americans feel could happen. we're on a knife's edge. some thing housing prices are low and still buying cars and shopping and gas prices went down and now gas prices have gone up two days in a row. 25 cents difference in a gallon of gas makes a difference if you earn $50,000 a year. it's how people think. >> i don't think people
understand how this is different, what's happening at the end of the year. ryan you wrote about it in your new yorker piece. all of what's come before is nothing compareded to what we're facing at the end of the year. you call the taxmageddon. >> it's very serious, this should be the issue of the election and especially in the fall it will be. it's not so bad it doesn't get settled before the election? >> you don't? >> this is what the election will determine. the winner of the debate will have somehow of a mandate to put their vision forward and deal -- >> i'm not being unrealistic in thinking that it will. what i would love to do is use it as a litmus test to see who americans should vote for. come forward and say i will fall on my sword and do the right thing even if my constituents don't think it's the right thing because the country is more important than my being elected a politician. isn't we'll put them on the big wall and say these are people in
congress that did the right thing. they should get your vote. >> the discussion should go back to the economy and i think it is officially now. >> happy fourth to you. >> happy fourth to you, my canadian friend. >> u.k. police using surface to air missiles on apartment building rooftops to protect the olympic games. a lot of people not thrilled about that. we'll go live to london. a glass of beer left on the bar meant to honor a fallen sailor. it turned into a national tribute. more than 2 million likes, the waitress who helped this memorial go viral will join us live. you're watching qurts starting point. >> i'm an engineer and i'm the founder of little bits. these are little bits. little beits is a system of electronic modules that snap together with magnets to teach
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the summer olympics are starting later this month in london. the defense department confirms there will be six missile launchers to protect games from terrorists. two will be located on top of apartment building, despite very loud protests from folks who live there. >> i can't imagine any situation in which you could safely use a high velocity missile. >> i thought it was a bit extreme. wouldn't really want it to be on top of my house. >> we want to bring in nic
robertson. a lot of people as we heard from are quite frustrating thinking there are massive missiles on the rooftops of homes, but they have to understand why they are there at the same time. >> reporter: the government has made its point clear, it will fight any objections in court and they have no doubt whatsoever that it will win its case. the government is going to push these missile systems through come what may. six of them around the olympics, the missiles have a range of 3 1/2 miles, fly at three times the time of sound. it's part of a bigger picture of aerial security, you have a naval ship with 800 marines close by, 7,500 soldiers deployed traveling in if they need to on helicopters. this is part of a range is what the government is saying. it does seem in a good measure
the government mismanaged how to sort of sell putting these missile systems into the very people who will have to live with them, brooke. >> i can't imagine. i was in london recently for the diamond jubilee and it seems with the security it was a dress rehearsayal for what was to come with the olympics. don't they have fighter jets on stand by? tell me what us they are preparing for. >> reporter: 7,500 soldiers, 12,500 policemen, special forces who will come out of helicopters arrived by helicopters, 800 marines on a ship. these are some of what we know about. there are other things happening. in the last year and a half, the british jails have emptied 50 to 80 terror convicts. there are concerns because of many them are in east london what they could do. we know that the british police are doing whatever they can to get them off the streets. some of them are still considered high risk. we're aware some have even been called back to jail. there are other efforts to get some of them outside of london
and there have been terror arrests just last week. two suspected radicals near the site and threat of terrorism from ireland, from irish republicans who are building very sophisticated weapon systems at the moment according to intelligence sources here. there's a massive number of threats. from what we know again, the police are really behind the scenes. you have the high profile stuff but behind scenes there's an awful lot more going on. >> interesting about ireland after queen elizabeth was there trying to mend fences shaking hands. this is quite the story, perhaps you even liked this photo on facebook. on this independence day, really it's a toast to a fallen sailor that has become a salute to all of our nation's heroes on the web. we'll talk to the waitress who posted this photo that went viral. you're watching "starting point."
texas bennigan's restaurant and left a beer in memory of his fallen friend. the waitress posted it, and it has since received two million likes. along with this glass of beer, the handwritten note reads, in memory of lieutenant jg francis toner, usn, killed in action. then written in latin is translated it for you, not for self, but for country, and the words in all capital letters, you see there, not forgotten. han hanna hobbs took the picture and posted it to facebook. and she is joining me with the ceo of bennigan's. welcome and good morning. >> it's a pleasure to be here. >> you're at work at your texas restaurant, and the guy says i want a pint of beer not for myself, but for my friend.
>> he came in and ordered two pints. he drank one. had one next to him. he ate. when he was ready to go, he asked me for another beer and to give it to a stranger from frantzis. yes, it was pretty neat. >> i understand you got more of the back story. you read the note, and you didn't want to pour it out. >> no. we closed at 10:00. i think i poured it out at about 11:30. >> you took a picture of it. >> yeah, but not before you took the picture and posted it on facebook. >> yeah. >> talk about the reaction. let me just read some of the reaction here. very special photo, hanna. i am a marine, so it holds a special place in my heart. thank you for posting this about my late brother-in-law. he was truly one of the greatest people i ever met. my sister loves that you did this. he will never be forgotten. did you in a million years think you would get the kind of reaction you got? >> no. i thought i would get like 40 likes, you know. i woke up the next day with like 20,000. >> had you learned the back story of this person? i don't know if anyone knows, but he won the silver star
because he was jogging and was fired at by some afghan troops, and ran into the line of fire and probably saved the lives of so many of the other sailors -- >> he saved the life of the man who left the pint of beer. >> yeah. >> i was just saying that on a day like today, we need to remember because we so often forget the enormous sacrifice that all of our troops, you know, especially in the last decade, over 2,000 u.s. troop deaths in afghanistan. i think 4,400 in iraq. i mean, enormous sacrifice. each of these families have paid extreme sacrifice for our country. >> as the ceo of bennigan's, you heard the story and you're doing something for the returning veterans. >> i would be happy to. first of all, we are very proud of hanna. a very selfless act.
it's just amazing. and the power of the internet is actually just mind boggling. with over 1 million likes. >> it's stunning, isn't it? >> it really is. so with us, there's all of these veterans coming back of the over 20 million of them. and many coming from afghanistan and the war. and we are thinking of so how do we welcome them home and not just pay lip service to it? so what we're actually doing is being as a member of the international franchise association, we are participating in operation -- of course, it has to be an operation, operation enduring opportunity, which actually gives an opportunity for returning vets that qualifies for some of the money that's available for the financing to open up a bennigan's and flex their entrepreneurial muscles and get into business and hopefully hire other vets as part of the team like we have with hanna. >> and it is true that you're waiving the franchise free? >> entirely. >> so they don't have the same
barriers to entry that others have? >> that's right. >> it's so great what you're doing. >> and it used to be in our history, that when veterans came back after fighting for us, i mean, the whole country turned out. we would do anything for our veterans, right, because they were paying this enormous sacrifice. and nowadays, you know, they are largely forgotten. i think it's really fantastic what you're doing. >> i don't know if they are largely forgotten. i think you're speaking of the vietnam days. we have learned from our vietnam days in many ways. >> it seems to me we used to do anything we could for them. >> the g.i. bill. >> and now we have issues related to health care. we have issues. these veterans ought to get the best health care. they ought to get subsidized loans, anything they need. >> absolutely. and i just have to ask you, you put this picture up on facebook. i know you have somehow through the power of the internet been in touch with the family of this fallen sailor. what have they said to you? >> thank you. thanks for telling everyone about him, you know. it's just -- >> it still gets you a little
emotional, however many months later. >> yeah. very emotional. >> why? >> it's sad. i mean, he -- they were a beautiful couple. >> he was married? >> he was married. they were beautiful together. >> when you look at that story, for frankie, as he's known, and he and his wife taught bible school, and this was the day before he was going to ship out. >> yeah. he was just about to come home. >> and he did a legendary act. and we are known for legendary service in food and all of that. so we wanted to do something legendary to honor the ultimate sacrifice this guy made for his country. >> to frankie and the rest of the men and women, i think we all say thank you on this fourth of july. >> couldn't be a better day for it. >> be right back. this is $100,000. we asked total strangers to watch it for us. thank you so much, i appreciate it, i'll be right back. they didn't take a dime. how much in fees does your bank take to watch your money ?
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fever, fatigue, cough, or sores. you should not start humira if you have any kind of infection. if you're tired of going around in circles, get headed in a new direction. ask your gastroenterologist about humira today. remission is possible. deaf zawah good morning. happy fourth of july to you. i'm brooke baldwin sitting in for soledad here. and our "starting point," sweating it out on this holiday. more than 1 million people waking up again without air conditioning here. just when they really need it the most. and now, dangers of neighborhoods running out of food. these are pictures, live pictures, from west virginia governor's mansion where food and supplies as you can see right now are being distributed to people all across that state. people certainly in need here. we'll talk to the governor of
west virginia, earl ray tomlin, in just a moment. also, as firefighters there are working around the clock to get these colorado wildfires under control, they are making heartbreaking decisions about what to save and what to let go. incredible, incredible video here of entire neighborhoods just up in flames. that's ahead. plus, students take a challenge from a professor, and hack -- they are actually hijacking this unmanned civilian drone with less than $1,000 of equipment. we'll ask them how they pulled it off, because they did, and whether we should be worried. also, what an interview we have coming up for you. an olympic hopeful. you've seen this picture. she gives up her dream of competing in the 100 meter dash after a photo finish. we'll ask jenna bartemo she said thanks, but no thanks to that runoff race. it is wednesday, the fourth of july. and "starting point" begins right now. ♪
a little patriotic music here this on this fourth of july. i thought we'd hear something from the play list. but we'll save that for later. welcome ryan lizza, and also margaret hoover. and richard socarides, former adviser to president clinton. good morning, guys. >> good morning again. >> happy fourth. so let's talk about the fourth of july. that's our "starting point" this morning but not exactly what you think because typically we would be sitting here talking about fireworks and barbecues. but because of the weather recently, others will not be doing those things today. very much so less fortunate today. really less about celebration and more about patience for americans facing another day of no power and intense heat. at least 20 people have died since thursday when deadly
storms slammed the east and midwest. and take a look at the map. you have just about 1 million people waiting for electricity to come back on in these different states. power companies say they are working to repair the damaged transmitters. and the lines really as fast as they can. but i know a lot of you will have to wait until the weekend, possibly the end of the weekend, to get the power back on. and with little help to beat the heat here. 14 states under heat advisory on this holiday. brian todd is in one of those states. he is in the capital of west virginia, charleston, where the temperature i'm hearing is 95 degrees. and more than 300,000 customers without power. good morning. >> that's right, brooke. good morning. yeah, the temperature is heating up. that's one big obstacle. but here is another big obstacle. you talk about the wait people are enduring before they get their power back, and this is really the reason why. this tree came down on this road in charleston. again, part of the problem,
these roads are closed because these trees are down. here is the double yellow line. so this thing is completely shut off. when they come upon a scene like this, power crews have to clear the debris, the small stuff, and chop up the big stuff. and then over here, here is a sense of what they have to go through as far as just the dangers they face. this tree came down, snapped in half. took down this power line. and what we just were told by a power company official was if this line -- they are supposed to automatically trip off and be deenergized. but if it doesn't hit the ground, it may not be. it could be if i touch it now, something bad could happen. so the crews have to be very, very careful. this is what they are up against, and this scene repeated throughout the state. they are also rebuilding infrastructure, brooke. we have a picture of a downed transmission tower. at least three of these towers came down in west virginia in the past few days. these are these kind of big lattice metal towers you see in rural areas carrying power lines a long way. and three of these came down. they have since replaced them
with temporary structures. but also almost 100 lines from these towers were damaged in the storm. so infrastructure rebuilding, a big part of the problem. this has also triggered a food shortage in west virginia. they are starting a food drive because some pantries of extra nonperishable food that they distribute to people in need, they have two large pantries in the state. those were pretty much bare as of yesterday afternoon so they are starting a food drive in west virginia today. also water pressure is a big problem. people are being advised to boil water because these pumps that pressure your water in your sink and your shower are not working. so lots of infrastructure problems here, brooke. power outages. heat. it's just a lot of natural cruelty all around. >> i know. not a lot to celebrate for a lot of people in west virginia, between the power issues, the food issues, the heat. brian todd, stay cool, you and your crew. staying in west virginia. we will talk to the governor, earl tomlin, and his wife,
joann, live with us this morning in charleston where food supplies are being distributed while we speak. so welcome and good morning to both of you. i see the sign thank you for your donation. both of you first just talk to me about this food donation drive. i know it was you, governor, and also the national guard, correct? so how successful was it? >> absolutely. we've had so many people coming out, a great outpouring of support. as you mentioned, the food banks were basically depleted. we were here until after 7:00 last night. we filled up several trucks and vans with food. this food will be going out across the state probably later today. but it's just once again west virginians helping west virginians. >> the director of the area huntington food bank said the storm couldn't have hit during a worse time. summer is the time when food banks don't have a lot of food in stock. people think the only time you should donate is during christmas and thanksgiving holidays. to either of you, if you can,
really hammer home to me how dire the situation is for folks in your state. >> well, what has happened, you know, the first couple of days, people had the food in the freezers, the refrigerators and so forth, without power for more than about 48 hours, and that food starts to go bad. so we've had mass dumpings of food that has spoiled. and a lot of places, the grocery stores, are still not open because of the lack of electricity. so we are doing is sending in meals, sending in about 40 big truck loads of water around the state each day. plus what people can buy. so, you know, the food is at a shortage right now. but we have made a lot of progress since friday night when the storm hit. >> we want to say a lot about the west virginia people too. they are so used to having natural disasters and emergencies. and they have come to the table, and there are people lined up here this morning bringing in their donations. and even people with power are saying, we feel so guilty we have power. we want to do something to help.
>> i lived in west virginia. i remember covering floods in logan county, and someone lost their home and they offered me their last pepsi. so i know about west virginia spirit. i know it. i do want to play this from a woman we talked to in west virginia. and she said there really doesn't seem to be an end in sight. >> we cleaned out the refrigerators and restocked them. and now we may lose the second batch of food. and you just have to live with no water. it's an inconvenience. about you we're making it, you know. >> i just want to bring in some of our panelists. >> governor, i'm curious about the federal response. in recent years, there's been a lot of conflict between the states and washington. how has the obama administration responded to what's going on in west virginia? >> fema has responded fantastically. we about 3:30 on saturday
morning after the storm had hit contacted fema. asked for generators for water, for ice. and by 1:00 in the afternoon, they had approved our request. they have feet on the ground here now working with our emergency officials, going door-to-door, making sure people are ok. explaining what fema can offer. this crisis has been a littlebility bit drint bit -- a little bit different than the storms we usually have. you don't see a lot of property damage. it's more of the infrastructure type damage. >> governor, it's richard. i think that's great. and the food drive is great. but do the power companies say why it's taking so long to restore the power? it seems like it's really a crisis now. >> well, it is. we started out with nearly 700,000 homes without power. we are down to about 300,000 now. the biggest problem we have is a lot of the transmission lines, those huge lines that you see
crossing from mountaintop to mountaintop. a lot of those towers were destroyed. so, you know, these are on the sides of mountains. they are difficult to get to. both of the majority electricity suppliers of the state have brought in help. we usually can bring them in from next door states, but now they are bringing them in from texas and other far away states because our neighbors were hit as well. we have had other pop-up storms almost every evening. so a lot of people have been knocked out again. but we are making progress, and we will continue to work around the clock until we get the electricity back on to everyone. >> all right, governor tomblin and joann. enjoy the fireworks tonight. we appreciate it. for information on how you can help, just go to cnn.com/impact. and now to poppy har low for the rest of the day's stories. >> good morning, everyone. incredible, new, and heartbreaking video of an entire neighborhood going up in flames
in colorado springs. you see sparks and flaming jumping from one roof to the next. firefighters forced to make the nearly impossible decision about which homes to save and which will have to burn. high winds keeping the fri firefighters on their toes. that waldo canyon fire is now 70% contained, but it has destroyed more than 350 homes, the damage topping $1 billion. and an awful turn in new hampshire. seven people were hurt, including several children, when a pile of fireworks exploded on the backporch of a home in pellham, setting the back of the house on fire. several of the victims, children, had to are abe air li to the hospital. and security will be very tight later today at fourth of july celebrations in washington, d.c., and new york. but law enforcement officials say there is no evidence that terrorists are plotting any attacks. however, a primary concern continues to be the ever-present
possibility of a lone wolf attack. and turning to the president now, president obama returns to the white house from camp david this morning just in time to celebrate america's 236th birthday. he'll join members of the military at a naturalization ceremony before country superstar brad paisley performing for about 200 troops tonight. there will also be a barbecue and fireworks before the president leaves tomorrow morning for the campaign trail. he'll be making stops and ohio and pennsylvania. just a little respite before the campaign. >> no rest for the weary. poppy, thank you. ahead on "starting point," nerds -- ryan lizza, i'm looking at you -- nerds, rejoice. scientists say they have captured the so-called god particle. >> margaret is the biggest nerd. >> yes, she is. we'll ask what this actually means. students also prove you can hack civilian drones.
drones that may soon be flying over your homes. we'll ask these student hackers exactly how they did it. by the way, the department of homeland security asked them to. plus, today's tough call. >> hey, there, big guy. having a few drinks? then listen up. >> hey, there, big guy. you're not that drunk. the hockey puck in the urinal is really talking to you. is the effort to stop drunk driving a little too crude? you're watching "starting point." did you guys hear about this? ♪ just think of you great shot.
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candela. love, love this. welcome back to "starting point." it is being called the biggest scientific breakthrough in decades and could change our entire understanding of the universe. scientists this morning announced they are almost certain they have discovered what's being called the god particle. and scientists have been working at the large haddron collider. they say that the higgs boson may actually exist. >> we think the evidence is very strong. otherwise, we wouldn't present it. >> it's seen as the key to how matter formed after the big bang more than 13 million years ago. joining me now from geneva is ralph uer, director of the cern which built the collider and made the announcement this morning. can you just explain this to me?
what exactly it is you found? >> well, we found a new particle. a new particle which is completely different to the particles we know up to now. and we have strong indications that it could be really the particle long sought after for many decades. and it's fantastic. to see for the first time such a new particle which could explain how elementary particles, fundamental particles, get their mass. it's a breakthrough. it's fantastic news. >> let me jump in because i don't have my ph.d. in science. i don't know about the rest of the panel here. but when you talk about particles, we really just -- why is this discovery significant? why should i care? >> you should care if you want
to understand a little bit how nature is built and how the building blocks of nature are done. and you should care if you want to understand a little bit more about the building of the universe, how the universe started, yeah, how all this developed in the first moment of the universe. then you should care. >> what's incredible, doctor, is that over 10,000 physicists have worked on this project from over 100 countries. it cost upwards of $8 billion to $10 billion. it's a collaborative project that has caused this breakthrough that many say is as important as recognizing that the universe didn't rotate around the earth. can you tell us how this will impact how we continue to think about the building of the universe? how is this a paradigm shift? >> well, it is a paradigm shift that for the first time, i think we are closer to understanding
as i said how the fundamental particles acquire mass. and we know that all particles have mass, and therefore we have to understand this. but this has happened in the early universe. and so we get now a glimpse on what has happened in the early universe in order to give these particles a mass. and further more, since this particle is a special one, it's one that doesn't know any preferred direction, it has the same behavior in all directions. that means it could also give some glimpse on the fact why the universe is accelerating in its expansion so we could learn something about the accelerated expansion of the universe. >> i love hearing the excitement. i love the excitement, rolf heuer. thank you so much. >> and congratulations. >> congratulations. >> margaret really knows a lot about this. and i'm very, very impressed. >> i am really impressed.
>> you know a lot about many things. you always impressed me. but why do they call it the god particle? >> doctor, can you tell us why we call it the god particle? >> why is it called the god particle? i don't know. [ laughter ] >> i mean, i think it's some -- >> he doesn't know. >> i think it comes from leon ladderman who wanted to publish a book, and he needed a striking title. >> and that was it. and it's gotten everyone around the world asking about it. >> branding. >> exactly. thank you so much. we appreciate it. and there you have it. even the scientists at cern doesn't know. but he knows why this is significant. pretty cool too. still ahead, advice from the porcelain gods. urinal cakes, little deodorizers in the urinals, are trying to get drunk guys to call a cab.
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welcome back to "starting point," everyone. i'm poppy harlow. anti-abortion activists failed to get the personhood issue onto ballots in november. this measure to find a human life beginning at fertilization, which would ban abortions in that state. a warning for the u.s. from the international monetary fund. it says boost the economy now and worry about budget deficits later or we're in danger of another recession. the imf says our government needs to spend more on infrastructure, train workers, extend unemployment benefits, and fix the housing market. brooke, back to you. >> thank you. it is time for today's
"tough call." this is something we have been talking about all through the commercial break. a urinal cake, like the little hockey puck thing that apparently is in urinals, talking to potential drunk drivers. and, boy, does it have a potty mouth. take a listen to her. >> don't drive drunk. if you do, and you get arrested, the next urinal you pea in will be in jail with a hairy guy named bubba standing behind asking you to pick up the soap and be his [ bleep ]. >> what? >> that's outrageous. >> wow. i wasn't expecting that coming. >> ok. hang on. let me give you a little context. this is michigan's office of highway safety planning. they distributed 400 of these cakes to curb drunk driving for today, for the fourth of july. they cost $21. they were paid for with a federal grant, which made the fact that they have a potty mouth pretty surprising. >> i'm pretty sure there are other public health campaigns to limit drunk driving without making prison rape jokes. >> yeah. >> it's a little inappropriate.
>> obviously, drunk driving is a huge and very serious problem in this country. and that -- that thing is not only gross, but it's like sexist and homophobic. and -- and -- and just gross. >> on the sexist note, listen to this. this is also what she says to you. >> hey, there, big guy. having a few drinks? then listen up. make the smart choice tonight. don't drink and drive. >> why does it have to be a female voice? >> and first of all, what do they have in the women's room? >> right. >> most people who are pulled over in drunk driving crashes maybe are men. but the question too, this was paid for by a federal grant. these cakes are $21. they cost -- >> what state? >> michigan. >> $21. >> the governor of michigan signed on for this? >> it's a federal grant. by a federal grant. your taxpayer dollars. >> come on, it's the state of
michigan. >> i think there is a republican governor in michigan. i' >> i'll be in michigan next weekend. maybe i'll benefit from this. >> this is bad news. >> this is a terrible waste of taxpayer dollars. >> i've never seen a state-sanctioned prison rape joke before. >> that really is the whole issue of this woman talking to you. i didn't quite catch that. it's kind of unreal. we'll see if it keeps going. send john to the bathroom and let us know if they change it. >> i'll report back. still ahead on "starting point," college students teaching the department of homeland security a thing or two about the dangers of drones, showing they can be hacked by virtually anyone. margaret hoover's play list. a little death cab. "marching bands in-mile-per-h m" how appropriate. find the perfec. because we only do hotels.
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we're getting all some on you, this fourth of july. poppy harlow, happy fourth to you. >> happy fourth to you as well. it is going to be an extremely hot independence day. you know that already. patience and food are running out. more than 1 million people waking up again this morning with no air conditioning when they need it most. temperatures expected to be in the mid to high 90s with even more stifling humidity from st. louis to philadelphia. at least 20 people have died since thursday when deadly storms slammed the east and the midwest. and turning to france, police in france raiding the home and offices of former french president nicolas sarkozy. it is part of an ongoing investigation to determine whether or not he received illegal campaign contributions.
sarkozy was vacationing in canada when the raid happened. and the runner-up in mexico's presidential election is insisting on a recount. mexico's federal election institute begins the process of verifying individual poll results today. and the first over the counter in-home hiv test has been approved by the fda. users of the oraquick will squab their gums with the test slab and then place it in a solution. one line for a negative result, two lines for a positive result. 20 minutes for a reading. it's supposed to be in stores by
october. and it costs just about $20. i find that fascinating, brooke, just how much we have advanced in the science of all of that. >> we have, poppy. thank you. quick note. yesterday, right around this time, we reported that purdue pharma, maker of oxycontin, wanted to produce a children's version of the drug. however, the company tells us that's not the case. purdue pharma confirms to clinical tests for children between the ages of 6 and 12 are underway, and they are not intended to promote the use of oxycontin in pediatric patients. instead, the trial is designed to give doctors more information about how children react to oxycontin, which is not approved for children but can be prescribed off label once a drug is in fact fda approved, doctors can prescribe it for alternate reasons. about 50% of drugs prescribed to kids have no information about how kids react to them, which is why the fda has requested that clinical trials are conducted in
children. if the pharmaceutical companies complete the studies and return the results to the agency, then they could be eligible for a six-month extension of their patent. turning to the next story, it might have you raising in eyebrows, unmanned drones will be allowed in u.s. air space by 2015 raising all kinds of questions about our security. with just $1,000 worth of software, a group of university of texas students successfully hijacked a drone. they first experimented with this at university of texas austin, and then the team was asked to demonstrate the process for the department of homeland security. dr. humphreys is joining me along with his star student here, dan shepherd, who led the effort. gentlemen, good morning to you. >> good morning. >> all right, professor. let's kick this off with the department of homeland security came to you and said, hey, we want to see if your students can hack a drone. is that basically how it went down?
>> well, they didn't come to us with that proposal in mind. they came to us to see if we could offer them something for a civilian test data they had planned. and it was actually daniel and i that proposed to them, would you like us to hack a drone? and they came back and said, yeah. >> daniel, you pulled it off. how easy was it? >> it was definitely not an easy effort. on top of the already four years of development into our technology, we had about two months where we were burning the midnight oil trying to pull this off, leading up to the test. >> ok. but you pulled it off. and i want to let everyone know, most recently we found that a number of people are applying for permits for these civilian drones. a couple of them, north little rock, arkansas, police department. ogden, utah, police department. the list goes on and on. what kind of danger does this
pose in terms of, i don't know, people getting into atm machines and cell phone towers? should we be nervous? >> well, you're right, that this is a bigger problem than just drones. the fact is that the civilian gps signals that we all rely on are insecure. they don't have any authentication. it's almost like a dollar bill without any water mark. and so it turns out that there are ways that you can hack into gps units in our internet and communications systems. none of these have the sort of dramatic effects that bringing down a drone does. but there are broad concerns for application of gps. >> gps usage has expanded well beyond the original intents. and because of that, they didn't foresee this type of usage. therefore, they didn't think there was a need to actually go and encrypt the signal. >> so, professor, how easy is it for civilian drones to be
encrypted in order to protect them? we all know military drones of course are encrypted but civilian drones aren't. can they be encrypted to preth them from smart enterprising guys like you? >> or those with nefarious intentions? >> they can be encrypted. this problem could be fixed. the trouble is that the plans on the table, included some plans generated by our university of texas radio navigation lab, these take some funds to get in place. what we'd really like to do is to change the satellite signals broadcast by the gps satellites, and our idea is the department of homeland security probably ought to fund this, the department of defense would implement it. but it would take a couple of million dollars to bring this about. >> just a couple million dollars? >> it sounds like a lot of money to me. >> well, look, a billion here, a billion there, pretty soon you're talking about real money. but in washington speak, a million or two is actually seems like a pretty reasonable cost for protecting civilian drones. >> professor humphreys, here is my question.
>> that's what our hope is. we believe that it's good value. it ought to be implemented. and we're hoping that what we can shed some light on the problem and perhaps persuade people in washington to go through with it. >> and i know you have been called to testify in a couple of weeks in front of members of congress and a committee. perhaps you can offer some solutions here to some of the issues you brought up. but you have been a little reluctant to talk about this. dhs isn't even releasing the video. why were you nervous about talking about this in the first place? >> well, i think that there's a certain fascination the public has with drones. on the one hand, we're looking forward to a time when we can get takeout food delivered to our doorstep. >> pizza by drone. >> that's right. on the other hand, there are some privacy concerns and security concerns. so i think what you see is the public trying to grapple with the promise of drones and the perils involved. >> a very serious point,
unrelated to what they did, but at the white house when they talk about their drone policy and one of the things they worry about is proliferation. eventually, white house national security advisers have told me before other countries, other groups, are going to get the same kind of drones we now use for military purposes, and that's something that the u.s. is starting to look at. how do you dial this back? we're not going to be the only ones eventually that can zap someone from the sky. >> but they are talking about attack drones. >> right. >> which i are encrypted, right? >> they are encrypted. >> but the technology eventually will be everywhere. >> yeah. todd humphreys and daniel sh shephe shepherd, we appreciate it very much. thank you. >> thanks for having us. still ahead on "starting point," get ready to scarf. we are live on coney long island. alison kosik counting down to the nathan's famous hot dog eating contest. we'll talk to alison in coney
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♪ she's all alone ♪ all alone ♪ in her time of need >> someone eating hot dogs today hoping to go the distance at coney island. this is cake, "the dance," courtesy of ryan lizza. joey chestnut, the man who holds the world record for eating 68 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes, hoping to get his sixth straight win this year at the super bowl of competitive eating. i know, it makes your stomach kind of turn here. the nation's famous hot dog eating contest. alison kosik is in the thick of things on coney island. alison, take it away.
>> it's getting started. can you hear how loud it is? the introductions are starting for the women. you see on the stage there, that's where they'll be scarving down their hot dogs there. the women are being introduced. three hours to go before the competition started. and you talked about joey chestnut at the beginning. it's about him and sonia thomas. she is the other contender on the women's side. she downed 41 hot dogs last year. he downed 68. they'll try and hold that or at least hold it and maybe even beat it. joey chestnut says he's ready for the rumble. >> i feel pretty good. i'm loose. empty. i haven't eaten solid food in about three days, and i feel really good. hopefully it's not too hot. i'll be sweating like a madman. as long as i can find my rhythm early on. >> reporter: ok. so we've got the hot dogs here. i'm going to go ahead and show you, brooke, how they go ahead
and down so many hot dogs in 10 minutes. christine is going to hold my mic. i have a hot dog here. they take it out, they split it, and they eat it this way and then they take the bun and dip it in the water and then they scarf this down after dipping it in the water. it makes it softer. and i don't think they chew the food. i think they just eat it like a snake, brooke. >> i am so glad you did not show us. i was so afraid you were going to be shoving hot dogs way too early here on this wednesday morning. are you feeling sick over this? >> well, a little bit. but my analysis of this is that nobody can catch up to joey chestnut. >> nobody can ketchup. let's relish in the moment. margaret, go. >> well, allow me to be frank about it. if i were to be frank about it, i would say this is really going to be -- >> oh, no, you didn't say that. >> you know, i took mayor bloomberg's joke. it was so bad, he couldn't even deliver it. but they have this technique
down. there's no chewing. 68 hot dogs. >> alison, what's the prize? is there a prize for this? there has to be a huge one. do we still have here? oh, we lost her. >> the prize is the title. the pride. >> knowing you're the man, or woman. >> it looks kind of horrible. and now we have all this information about you are what you eat. you're supposed to eat healthy. >> did you see those people? they look thin and fit. that woman looks like she weighs 100 pounds. >> it's always the thinnest people that are the best at this. >> if you can have the bragging rights, who would try it if you knew you could win? >> no. >> not at all. >> would you try it? >> no way. >> there's many things i strive for in life, but -- >> ice cream eating contest i could handle. but hot dogs, not so much. jeneba tarmoh coming up. rather than taking part in a runoff after this photo finish, why would she walk away? she'll join us live, next. atching "starting
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the district attorney in los angeles has decided not to charge john bryson for two automobile collisions last month. bryson has since resigned. he had been on medical leave after the two accidents and says they were caused by seizures. another sign that the tomkat era is over. katie holmes has fired the security team that tom cruise hired to protect her. cruise spent tuesday, his 50th birthday, flying home to california from iceland where he was filming a movie. holmes is in new york with their daughter, suri. on a positive note, i guess, for tom cruise, he is officially the highest paid actor in the world. forbes magazine says that cruise made $75 million over the last year. that is more than double the next two on the list, adam sandler and leonardo dicaprio. each both home $37 million. duane the rock johnson and ben stiller round out the top five. not a bad payday. we just got some news we're a little disappointed to hear
that jeneba tarmoh, the one who was initially declared the victor, did the victory lap, did the press afterwards, sort of relishing in really realizing her dream, and then hours later basically the folks come back to her and say, sorry, this was in fact a dead heat. it was a statistical tie. and so you're seeing the pictures of the woman who was racing with her, allison felix, who is a pretty marquee two-time olympian. they were supposed to do a runoff. and we just found out literally sixty seconds ago that she cancelled. it's unfortunate, jeneba. we would have loved to talk to you and hear your story to find out why. there's been a lot of talk about this. >> she will be in the olympics, though, right?
>> not in an individual race. >> any speculation why? >> there was the thought that she could get injured. we had kerry strugg on yesterday, who said as a former olympian, as a competitor, we train so much it's hard to imagine someone not embracing the spirit of competition. >> she was also disappointed they didn't have a procedure in place to deal with a tie. >> it happens so rarely. it happens so, so rarely. >> you go to the photo finish and you can usually tell. but the olympics are going to be great. i'm really excited. >> let me read this. it is interesting. she has the same coach as the woman who is going on to race, and she was willing to race. the coach's wife, jackie joyner kersee, a lot of people are saying had she raced and we had seen the runoff, it would have really brought attention to a sport that hasn't seen it in a while. they were going to do it in primetime.
jackie joyner kersee reacted herself. she said, this could have been something exciting for the sport. something new, something different, to bring people in that don't ordinarily watch. reality at its best. this is the reality. you've got everything. emotion, the journey, but you don't have a cast. i was reading part of an interview she did do last night, and she doesn't see it as though she gave up. she doesn't look at it that way. you don't put the word "quitter" next to her. she'll be in the olympics. but i would have liked to have asked her myself. >> she is at peace with her decision, but it could have been great for the sport and great for getting us excited about london. >> imagine the emotional roalle coaster of going through that race and thinking you won, and then realizing there's a process to decide this thing. and then you have to on national television run in this
tiebreaker. imagine the pressure on her. the pressure on an olympic athlete anyway is just immense. >> i can't imagine. >> i don't second guess her second. >> jen cageneral ba, we ask wis absolutely the best. a big thing in an old friend's life. purina one discovered that by blending enhanced botanical oils into our food, we can help brighten an old dog's mind so he's up to his old tricks. with this kind of thinking going into our food, imagine all the goodness that can come out of it. just one way we're making the world a better place... one pet at a time. vibrant maturity. from purina one smartblend.
lady liberty on this fourth of july. such a pretty picture. this is "fifireworks. who is excited about that tonight? >> i am. >> might be raining. >> you're such a spoiler. >> still, the show must go on. so in the last two minutes we have, end point, who wants to start? >> i wanted to give a shoutout to our colleague and friend anderson cooper who came out earlier this week in a very classy way. i think he is an important role model for people. i think no matter who you are, there are challenges coming out. you know, i had my own challenges. but i think he's a great role model. and i think he did it in a very classy way. and i think we're all proud of him. and he's going to help a lot of people, don't you think? >> 100%. i'm so glad you said that. i'm going to go on a lighter note. it's fourth of july. so folks who are on the road out there, we had this travelocity
representative on at the beginning to tell us about these fantastic apps for the fourth of july. but she missed one. >> she ran out of time. >> i told her we'd do it. it's called sit or squat. >> which is awesome. >> and it is an app to tell you where the cleanest rest rooms are in your area. so you can decide whether to pull over to that gas station to the rest room or not. >> sit or squat. >> exactly. >> so it's fourth of july. and someone who covers politics for a living, and watches as the two parties and two ideologies in this country can't seem to agree on much, it's a nice time to remember that it was always that way. and, you know, we can't agree on the meaning of the declaration of independence as the supreme court decision reminded us recently. we can't agree on everything. the meaning of the constitution. and to me, as someone who covers politics and gets very cynical sometimes, it's a nice day to celebrate our differences. celebrate that that's what makes the country great. >> i agree. and i thought you were about to
say they couldn't even agree whether it was july 2 or july 4. that was something richard and i were talking about earlier. >> the declaration signing was july 2. >> but the signing of the document was the fourth. although there is some dispute as to whether or not the document was actually even signed on the fourth. >> there you go. >> and to your point, the dispute, goes back a few centuries. coming up tomorrow on "starting point," 17-year-old lia neal will join us live. she is the second african-american woman to make the u.s. swim team. also, ben la bolt. and jack abramoff. should be a lot going on. >> not appearing all together? >> should we do that? >> it could be very interesting. >> no, no. thanks so much for joining us. have a wonderful fourth of july. i'm brooke baldwin in new york. now to carol costello in "cnn newsroom." >> good morning, and happy fourth of july to you too.
hot, hot, hot. today could be one of the hottest july fourths ever. that could happen in several major cities. heat, humidity, and thunderstorms will blanket the nation. plus, this. >> just think of how many we got into one sentence. that was really impressive. what wrote this [ bleep ]? >> oh, new york mayor michael bloomberg unplugged at the nathan's hot dog wagon. seems he couldn't stomach the puns, like let me be frank. it's going to be a dog fight. and i'll relish it. it's bloomberg like we've never seen him. also -- >> you can see the sparks flying all over the place. it was raining fire down on us. >> on the frontlines, colorado firefighters taking cnn with them as they fight the fires home by home. the fire chief telling the denver post this morning he knew the fire would happen, that it was a monster ready to