tv CBS Evening News CBS August 11, 2012 6:00pm-6:30pm PDT
>> mason: tonight, the republican ticket for 2012, mitt romney picks wisconsin congressman paul ryan as his running mate, and the campaign against the president. >> president obama has become part of the problem, and mitt romney is the solution. >> mason: jan crawford is following the candidates. who is paul ryan, and what's on his resume? our chip reid takes a look. praying for rain, we visit with ranchers in texas. and the olympic twist, which countries are the real winners? another way of looking at the medal count. mark phillips does the math. captioning sponsored by cbs this is the "cbs evening news."
>> mason: good evening. i'm anthony mason. mitt romney has filled out his ticket and drawn the battle lines for campaign 2012. with the republican convention just over two weeks away, the presumed presidential nominee has named congressman paul ryan to be his running mate. he made the announcement this morning in norfolk, virginia, the kickoff to a swing state bus tour. jan crawford is on the campaign trail in manassas, virginia, tonight. jan. >> reporter: anthony, paul ryan was a favorite of some conservatives who were urging romney to go bold, but still his announcement today came as something of a surprise. but as you can see from the crowds behind me, it instantly reset this presidential race. in norfolk, ryan stepped off the retired battle ship uss "wisconsin" and on to the national stage enjiegz the conservative base and injecting substantive issues into the campaign. >> a lot of people in the other party might disagree with paul ryan. i don't know of anyone who doesn't respect his character and judgment. >> reporter: as chairman of the house budget committee, the stef-term congressman from
southern wisconsin has hammered a message of fiscal responsibility. ryan has proposed revamping medicare before it becomes insolvent, cutting trillions of dlars in discretionary spending. >> we are on an unsustainable path that is robbing america of our freedom and security. it doesn't have to be this way. >> reporter: but beyond energizing the base, which headache lukewarm to romney, ryan could also help pick up support in key swing state including his home state of wisconsin. the president won wisconsin in 2008 by 14 points over senator john mccain. recent polls show a decline in his support. ryan and romney spent the rest of the day in the swing state of virginia, where ryan fire up crowds in ashland. >> he's going to divide and distract this country to win an election by default and you know what? we're not going to fall for that. >> reporter: but for all the
enthusiasm wasn't perfect. >> join me welcoming the next president of the united states, paul ryan. >> reporter: it was the same mistake then-senator barack obama made four years ago when he introduced his running mate joe biden. >> the next president, the next vice president. >> reporter: this morning, romney didn't really the gaffe right away and bowbded back to the podium to clarify. >> every now and then i'm known to make a mistake. ( laughter ). i did not make a mistake with this guy. but i can tell you this, he's going to be the next vice president of the yiewt. >> reporter: now we found out a little more about how romney came to this decision. he made up his mind on paul ryan 10 days ago when he called him that day but he didn't tell him he was the pick. he told him on august 5 he was going to be the nominee, and them,, the rest of us found out today. anthony. >> mason: jan crawford, thanks, jan. paul ryan has represented
wisconsin in the u.s. house of representatives for 14 years. his district lies in the southeastern part of the state and includes his home town of janesville, where chip reid joins us tonight outside the ryan family home. >> reporter: janesville is an industrial town of about 64,000 people. paul ryan lives in this historic home in the well-to-do neighborhood where he grew up. >> my family's been in this town for five generations. >> reporter: just two months ago, paul ryan brought mitt romney to janesville, where ryan went to high school and still attends this catholic church. his family's construction business is more than a century old. when ryan was 16, his father died of a heart attack at 55. george steil was a law partner with ryan's dad. >> i could see a little more seriousness come about him, and he still was the friendly, affable type of guy, but i think he became a little more serious. >> reporter: after college, ryan worked briefly for the family business but was drawn to politics. he ran for congress at 28.
>> everybody liked him. and i think if you went around the community here in janesville today, you would be hard pressed to find anybody that didn't like paul ryan. ( applause ) >> good morning, everybody. >> reporter: in congress, ryan has made the federal budget his focus and curbing the national debt his mantra. >> we've got to get ahead of this problem, and we don't want to have a situation where we just keep kicking the can down the rooted, assume we can keep going on as we are. >> reporter: ryan advocates deep cut in government spending and lower taxes. he publicly confronted president obama over his health care reform. >> this bill does not control costs. this bill does not reduce deficits. instead, this bill adds a new health care entitlement. >> reporter: after the republicans won control of the house of representatives two years ago, ryan became budget committee chairman and proposed freezing domestic spending. he called the president's proposed budget cuts paltry, just $40 billion a year in the face of trillion-dollar
deficits. >> i don't think history's going to be really kind it a president what when one fronted with one of our country's most pressing challenges of debt crisis, chooses to do nothing about it. >> he's a divisive figure. his proposes have, in many people's mind, been way to the write. >> reporter: scott angus says while ryan's budget proposals are controversial, the newspaper has endorsed him in all seven of his elections. >> if you know paul, regardless of whether you agree with his politics, you get a guy that comes across extremely sincere. again, what you see is what you get. >> reporter: you'd be very surprised if there were any skeletons. >> i would be. he seems pretty squeaky clean. >> reporter: on the personal side, paul rain and his wife janna have three children, 10, eight, and seven, and for recreation likes to hunt deer with a bow and arrow and has a ranch on the texas-oklahoma border where he likes to catch giant cat fish with his bare
hands. >> mason: ryan would cut $5 trillion in spending over 10 years. it would reduce the deficit, but critics charge it would also unravel the social safety net. paul ryan's plan, called "path to posspert" transforms medicare into a system that allows seniors to purchase either traditional government-run or private insurance. 65-year-olds would pay neerlt 70% of the total cost of that coverage compared with the 25% under current law. the congressional budget office estimates it will cost seniors $6400 more in 2022 than they pay today. a democratic attack ad likened it to throwing granny over a plant. it calls for social security eventually to be privatized and raise the retirement age, now 66, ultimately to age 70. >> every year we don't do something to fix social
security, $600 billion deeper into the hole we go. >> i don't think right wing social engineering is any more stierable than left wing social engineering. >> mason: newt gingrich backtracked and the republicans have epidorsed the plan. med caished the program for the tion's poorest would end as a federal program and become a grant to the state. aid would be cut by more than a third, by some estimates, up to frorp fewer people would be covered. earlier this year, a group of catholic scholars criticized ryan, himself a catholic says his plan decimates food programs tprogramsto struggling families, radically weakens protections for the elderly and sick and gives more tax breaks to the wealthiest few. ryan further proposed a major tax overhaul that would reduce the system to two brackets, 10% and 25%. wealthy taxpayers would get a large cut, but the majority of americans would get hit with a tax increase. the ryan prescription for
spending and taxes would mark a 180 degree turn from president obama's approach. what does his campaign make of the ryan choice? nancy cordes is at the white house tonight. nancy. >> reporter: well, anthony, vice president biden called paul ryan today to congratulate him and welcome him to the race. the two will be debating each other in the fall. but in truth, this white house and paul ryan have been going head to head for years over their competing visions for the country. at 9:23 a.m. eastern time, just as romney and ryan were bounding to the podium, the obama campaign released the first of a flurry of statement statements , warning that romney's vp pick believes in budget-busting tax cuts for the wealthy and would end medicare as we know it. >> it's a vision that says america can't afford to keep the promise we made to care for our seniors. >> reporter: that was the president in april 2011, savaging ryan's budget plan, even as ryan sat in the front row after being invite to the
speech by the white house. >> it would be fundamentally different than what we've known throughout our history. >> reporter: ryan said he was blindsided. >> i thought the president's invitation to mr. kemp, mr. hensarling and myself was an olive branch. instead what we got was a speech that was excessively partisan dramatically inaccurate. >> reporter: the maneuver may have been payback for ryan's brutal assessment of the president's health care plan a year earlier in a face-to-face televised meeting at the white house. >> the senate budget committee chairman said that this is a ponzi scheme that would make bernie madoff proud. >> reporter: the president made no comment on romney's choice today as he left the white house en route to chicago, but on his campaign web site, mitt romney and paul ryan are being branded as the go back team who, "want to take us back to the failed, top-down economic ideas of the past." obama campaign officials argued
today that the choice of ryan is a sign that romney was more concerned about shoring up his base than reaching out to independent voters, but the truth santhony, no matter who romney picked, the obama campaign was prepared to pan that person. >> mason: nancy cordes at the white house. thanks, nancy. coming up on the cbs evening news, what's behind the escalating attacks on u.s. soldiers in afghanistan?
>> mason: two strong earthquakes rocked iran today, killing at least 180 people. they occurred near the northern city of tabriz, known for its oil production and nuclear facilities. at least 1300 people are reported injured. six villams were leveled, forcing residents to flee. the quakes measured more than 6.2 on the richter scale.
in afghanistan, six u.s. soldiers were killed, three by an afghan worker at a military base last night. it followed the killing of three other u.s. soldiers by an afghan policeman earlier in the day. what's going on. kitty logan is in kabul. kitty. >> reporter: we don't know yet exactly, but a spokesman for the international forces here says that this doesn't reflect the bigger picture. heahe wantshe wants to point ou0 afghan forces are working with troops in this country without incident most days of the week. but the taliban issued a statement saying these attacks are their responsibility and reflect the mood of the afghan people. whatever the reasons for these killings, it's certainly an issue to be taken seriously. it could be a planned campaign or it simply could be copycat incidents. >> mason: kitty, how does this happen? how does an afghan get on an american military base to actually kill a soldier? >> well, all local employees who work on military bases are
subjected to very strict vetting procedures. but the u.s. military has admitted to us these could never be 100%. the afghan government is keen to point out the students in this particular case, the latest suspect, didn't in fact have any links whatsoever to insurgent groups. president karzai has issued a statement this evening. he says the attacks are because the enemy does not want to see a stable security force in afghanistan. but whatever the reason for these latest incidents, it's certainly a very worrying trend. >> mason: next up, the toll the drought is taking on ranchers deep in the heart of texas.
spraying in nearly 50 years in the face of a deadly outbreak of west nile virus. cases of west nile are now confirmed in all but six of the lower 48 states. texas reports nine deaths from the virus so far. six deaths are reported in louisiana. temperatures hit the 80s and 90s casino texas again today, prolonging the drought that is putting the livelihood of farmers and ranchers at risk. manuel bojorquez has more. >> reporter: sulfur springs, texas, has a rhythm. >> come on guys. >> reporter: that has endure decades. >> come on, in girl. >> reporter: rancher don smith, 68 years old, loves his way of life. >> we came across here this morning the cows were getting up, and the calves were nursing and, gosh, man, it don't get no better than that. >> reporter: but smith also knows the hard times. he comes from a family of texas cattle men, a family that endured a record-setting drought that began in 1947, lasting 10 years. it ruined thousands of farmers
and ranchers. for the past two years, smith has been fighting again to save his ranch. the latest drought has cut deep into his savings, requiring more money to water and to feed his 235 cows. he is not alone. many other others others are stn this northeast texas farmers' co-op. general mrgs brad johnson. >> it is a one-two punch when you hitch hike on what we went through last year when we called the big boy. the big boy drought in the state of texas exceeded anything he had seen in the past. >> reporter: the 6200 members of the co-op are also suffering from the catastrophic drought gripping the midwest. it has killed the corn that would have fed these texas cows and sent the price of feed soaring. the july report from the u.s. department of agriculture shows the lowest national cattle herd since 1973. ranchers here say the prolonged
drought could make those numbers even lower. >> the only place that we have to turn is to liquidate our animals, and then somehow look for another livelihood that in this economy doesn't seem to be offering a lot of opportunities to a lot of people. >> reporter: the estimate is that 25% of the ranchers and dairy farmers in this co-op may be on the brink of losing their way of life. >> best way to put it at this point is let's just all pray for rain. >> reporter: rain, and a lot of us. manuel bojorquez, cbs news, sulfur springs, texas. >> mason: and we'll be back.
average $3.69 a gallon. that's up 30 cents in just a month. in california, gas is now more than $4 a gallon, up 35 cents in the last month. why such a jump in california? it's partly because of a massive fire at an oil refinery outside of san francisco. the blaze poured out acrid smoke that sent hundreds of area residents to hospitals complaining of breathing difficulties. estimates say it will take weeks to get refinery completely back to normal. the mars rover can the cure is getting what scientists call a brain transplant today so the computers can do better work on the red planet. the remarkable vehicle turned back a photo of its own landing, what turned out to be a hard landing that threw up a plume of dust seen on the left. 45 minutes later as you see on the right, it dissipated. still ahead, the usual suspects won most of the olympic medals.
gold medal wins today by the u.s. women in the 4 x 400 relay and in the basketball. which is the winningest nation at the olympics. you might say the u.s. but not not the way our mark phillips see is it. >> reporter: the women's relay was another american highlight at these games, not just a victory but an annihilation of an old world record set 27 years ago by east germany. the basketball team continued its progress towards the gold medal. but there was the hint of another game going on in this race. the u.s. were clear favorites in the mens 4 x 400 relay, but somebody forgot to tell the guys from the bahamas. david beating golieath. in a way that's what's been
happening in the overall medal standings. the u.s. leads china, russia, and great britain. there's a new olympic sport-- weighting the tables for how rich or big a country is. a team of statisticians working for a british's newspaper factored in each country's g.d.p., on the theory the richer a country is the more it can spend on training and nurturing the athletes. by that measure, the u.s. is only 60th in the standings. weighted by wealth, which country is first? the little caribbean island nation of grenade afollowed by jamaica and-- wait for it-- north korea. grenada's standing is courtesy of its gold medalist kirani james. jamaica owes its place to its star spirnts including usain bolt and yohan blake. no one these games have been a bit of a caribbean party. weighted by population, the
theory being more people, more good athletes to pick, the same thing happens. grenada, with a little over 100,000 people, first. jamaica population 2.9 million, second. and-- wait for it-- the bahamas as, 316,000 third. that's right, the same people who beat the u.s. in that relay. >> mason: and that's the cbs evening news. i'm anthony mason in new york. thanks for watching. good night. captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
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