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tv   Democracy Now  WHUT  September 14, 2012 6:00pm-7:00pm EDT

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09/14/12 09/14/12 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] >> from pacifica, this is "democracy now!" we are on the road in pittsburgh, pennsylvania on our 100 city election 2012 silent majority college and committed the media to wear. >> voter id, will allow governor romney to win pennsylvania -- done. >> as pennsylvania republicans openly predict a new voter id law will help mitt romney win
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the battleground state in november, the pennsylvania supreme court reviews the legality of the law which could disenfranchise up to three- quarters of a million voters. >> i have never heard anything like it before, and i just think it is terrible because so many people don't have id and they are not going to be a to vote. that is taking the privilege away and i don't think it is right. >> will pennsylvania execute a man for killing his sexual abuser? we will look at the case of terrance williams. he is scheduled to die october 3rd for killing a man who repeatedly raped him as a young teenager. that and look at how pittsburgh became the first major city in the country to ban fracking. >> people have a right to clean, pure water and air, and the preservation of natural values of the environment. pennsylvania's public natural
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resources or the common property of all the people. >> all of that and more coming up. this is "democracy now!,", the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we're on the road in pittsburgh. protests generated by american made found that mocks the prophet mohammed continue to flare for forth across the middle east of north africa. in egypt, police in riot gear used tear gas against demonstrators hurling rocks at the u.s. embassy. the muslim brotherhood canceled the million man protest scheduled to follow friday prayers, but protesters continued to gather and some reportedly moved to burn an american flag. in yemen, protesters breached a security wall, set fire to building inside u.s. embassy compound thursday. four protesters died while dozens of people were injured as security forces clashed with demonstrators. protests against the film have
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erupted in multiple other locations including bangladesh, malaysia, indonesia, iraq, iran, jordan, sudan, tunisia, israel, and the gaza strip. u.s. authorities have officially identified the key figure behind the anti islam film that sparked the protests. nakoula basseley nakoula is a 55-year-old 7 california resident with a checkered past involving drug convictions and bank fraud. he was sentenced to nearly two years in prison in 2010 for financial crimes and is barred from using the internet without approval under the terms of his supervised release. he told the associated press he is a coptic christian. meanwhile, an actress who participated in the film said actors were deceived about the nature of the video and did not realize it was anti islam. instead they're given a script entitled "desert warriors" that was purported to be about life in ancient egypt, the words like mohammed and other references to islam were dubbed over their voices after the filming.
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new details have emerged about the attack in libya that killed as a ambassador christopher stevens and three of his staff on tuesday. a senior libyan official now says militants may have used the protests against the anti islam film as a cover to attack the consulate. according to the official, the attack on the embassy was the first part of a two-pronged attack timed to coincide with september 11. militants later raided a safe house in the compound right as u.s. and libyan security forces arrived to evacuate the staff. libyan authorities say they have arrested four suspects. president obama invoked the libya attacks during a campaign stop in golden, colorado thursday, vowing there would be repercussions for those responsible. >> we are going to bring those who killed our fellow americans to justice. [applause]
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i want people around the world hear me, no act of terror will go unpunished. it will not dim the light of the values that we proud to present to the rest of the world's. no act of violence shakes the result of the united states of america. >> republican presidential nominee mitt romney meanwhile continues to be criticized by remarks he made attacking president obama over his handling of the violence in libya. a protester interrupted romney's speech in fairfax, virginia to accuse him of criticism sizing -- politicizing libya. >> we have lost four of our diplomats across the world where we are thinking about their families and those left behind. what is it? >> [indiscernible] what are you politicizing libya?
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>> usa! >> usa! >> i would offer a moment of silence, but one gentleman does not want to be silent, so we're going to keep on going. >> romney supporters drowned the protester out with chants of "usa!." the disruption comes as romney faces criticism for using the violence in libya to accuse the obama administration of sympathizing with the attackers. romney's criticism centered on a statement from the u.s. embassy in cairo that was actually released before the attacks. following the disruption on thursday, romney went on to criticize obama's for policy and stress the importae of u.s. military power. >> as we watch the world today, sometimes it seems we're at the mercy of events instead of shaping them. a strong america is essential to shape events. we have to have a military -- [applause]
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we have to have a military second to none and so strong that no one would ever think of testing it. >> public school teachers in chicago remained out of the classroom for a fifth day today amidst signs there close to a deal that would bring their historic strike to an end. chicago teachers union president karen lewis indicated a deal was imminent, but the classes would not resume until at least monday because the union needed time to approve an end to the strike. negotiations have centered on controversial school reforms backed by chicago mayor rahm emanuel, including a proposed teacher evaluation process the union says relies too heavily on standardized testing. primary voters in new hampshire were mistakenly barred from voting this week after election officials incorrectly told them they needed a photo id. new hampshire pass a voter id law in june, but the law was due to be phased in in steps. officials were supposed to ask voters for id during this week's
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primary, but ids were not record the vote until next year. but on tuesday, some voters without id were turned away amidst widespread confusion, while signs posted outside polling stations incorrectly said an id was required. in related news, the pennsylvania state supreme court heard arguments thursday on whether to allow that state's controversial verdict -- controversial voter id law to go into effect. the law could have a major impact on the november election in a key battleground state. we will have more on pennsylvania after headlines with guests in philadelphia as well as here in pittsburgh. in news from syria, yemen arab league envoy lakhdar brahimi arrived in the capital of damascus thursday as government forces attacked the outskirts of the capital in a bid to root out rebel forces. opposition activists said helicopter gunships were firing on suburban areas. during his visit, brahimi is expected to be missing president bashar al-assad as well as with rebels opposed to the al-assad regime. brahimi has replaced kofi annan,
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who resigned his negotiating role in syria the end of last month amidst a diplomatic standoff over conflict that has killed more than 20,000 people in the last 18 months. speaking thursday, brahimi's spokesperson stressed the difficulty of the mission. >> the mission is really daunting. mr. brahimi said it as kofi annan has said it before, we said it before and say it again, that there are countries with influence and others with interests and we implore those influential countries for the parties to use their influence to curb the bleeding. this first mission is of extreme seriousness. ending the bloodshed, the moving toward a political face for negotiations and how to end this crisis. >> pakistani at guard is have filed murder charges against factory owners and government officials after a karachi factory blaze killed 289 people
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on tuesday in the country's worst industrial disaster. as relatives mourned the dead thursday, survivors said the factory's owners had intentionally locked the building's main 33 -- man 30- foot sliding door, trapping workers in order to save a stock of stonewashed jeans due for export to europe. the move reportedly left hundreds of workers trapped in the blaze with just one available exit. relatives of the victims gathered at the factory thursday to search for the bodies of their loved ones. >> there are bodies lying inside. they're not pulling them out. they are saying the building will collapse. police, some on, pull them out. >> we just want our men back. i want the father of the children back. they should arrest the honor of the factory. he should get exemplary punishment. >> government data shows the u.s. is continuing its trend of extreme weather with this summer now officially the third hottest on record for the lord 48
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states. according to the national oceanic and atmospheric administration, the national average temperature from june to august was more than 2 degrees fahrenheit above the 20th century average. june and august were both warmer than average, while july was the hottest month on record. meanwhile, the u.s. continues to be plagued by drought, with nearly 63% of the contiguous u.s. experiencing drought conditions at the end of last month. warm and dry conditions in the west helped fuel wildfires that consumed 3.6 million acres nationwide, more than twice the august average. the federal reserve has unveiled a series of major steps amidst -- aimed at bolstering u.s. economy and reducing unemployment. the fed announced its plans to indefinitely spend $40 billion a month to buy mortgage debt until the job market improves significantly. it also said it likely plans to keep key interest rates at record lows at least through the
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middle of 2015. the reserve chairman ben bernanke outlined the steps at a news conference on thursday. >> with inflation anticipated to run at or below our objectives, the committee is convinced further policy accommodation is warranted to strengthen the recovery and support the gains we began to see in housing and other sectors. while the economy appears to be at the path of moderate recovery, it is a growing -- it is not growing fast enough to reduce the unemployment rate. fewer than half of the 8 million jobs lost in the recession have been restored. at 81%, the unemployment rate is nearly unchanged since the beginning of the year and well above normal levels. >> the fed likely to keep key interest rates at record lows a lease to the middle of 2015. bank of america has agreed to a settlement over claims it violated federal law by discriminating against mortgage applicants with disabilities. the justice department alleged
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bank of america imposed extra requirements on disabled far worse who relied on social security payments, including forcing them to provide letters from doctors. bank of america has agreed to pay amounts of up to $5,000 to disabled loan applicants. a new report shows the billionaire casino mogul and top politician donor sheldon adelson stands to reap a massive tax windfall should mitt romney win the presidential election. according to the center for american progress, romney's policies would save adelson more than $2 billion in taxes. the savings would come through a combination of romney's proposals to cut the rate for top earners, avoid or exempt foreign profits, and maintain low rates on dividends and capital gains. residents opposed to the new york police department's controversial stop and frisk policy rallied in new york on thursday as part of a nationwide campaign to "blow the whistle"
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on police abuses. protesters from los angeles to new york sought to draw attention to police brutality and the disproportionate targeting of people of color. the organizer joined dozens of other protesters in harlem. >> we will see how the police respond. they may step back and hope we will stop after a while and things can go back to normal, but we're determined not to go back to normal because normal is people being stepped on by the police each and every day in new york city. most are black or latino, and almost all are doing nothing wrong. that kind of normal has to be disrupted. >> in white plains, lawyers for the family a police shooting victim kenneth chamberlain appeared in court thursday to defend a $21 million federal lawsuit. chamberlain, a 68-year-old marine veteran, was shot dead last on november 19 by police
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officer anthony carelli at his white plains home after police responded to a false alarm from his medical alert pendant. despite chamberlains insistence he was ok, police broke down his door, tasered him, and shot him dead. one officer can be heard on a recording calling him a racial slur. the chamberlain family is suing a number of events, including the city of white plains and officer carelli. in a packed courtroom thursday, defendants sought permission to file motions to dismiss the complaint. lawyers for the chamberlain family opposed the motion but agreed to amend the complaint. the victim's son spoke to reporters outside the courthouse. >> as far as justice for kenneth chamberlain, sr. gus, i am in a bubble on my stance right now. i am not going anywhere. there will be accountability on the part of the city of white plains and the white plains police department.
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>> that was kenneth chamberlain, jr., son of kenneth chamberlain, sr. extensiver extensio coverage of the story, go to this is "democracy now!,", the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. where on the road in pittsburgh, pennsylvania on our 100 city tour. tonight i'll be speaking at oberlin college added o'clock. tomorrow, and ohio at noon. we will be in athens, georgia and saturday night. we turn now to our first segment it with less than two months to go before the november 6 election, we begin today's show with a look at a new voter id law in the battleground state of pennsylvania. studies have shown as many as 750,000 eligible voters in the state do not have an acceptable id under the new law which
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requires all voters to show a state driver's license, government employee id, or non driver id card issued by the state. in philadelphia, it has been estimated that 18% of voters lack the proper id. at least one republican politician has already boosted the new voter id law will help mitt romney win the state. >> voter id, which will allow governor romney to win the state of pennsylvania -- done. >> that was pennsylvania house majority leader mike turzai, a republican. on thursday, the pennsylvania supreme court heard arguments on whether to allow the controversial law to go into effect, or to approve a preliminary injunction. one planted in the case is longtime voter will lilly, was born in rural georgia before moving to philadelphia in 1957. in this video, produced by the aclu, she explains how she cannot get a photo id because
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georgia kept no record of her birth. >> i handed out literature for people to vote to. i have been voting since i was 18. i will not be able to vote because i do not have the proper photo id. i have been trying for 10 years to get my photo id. i was born in georgia. for some reason, they said they cannot find it. i don'tthink it is fair believe it is fair because some people cannot get their photo ids. it is not fair to them. some people have been voting for so many years, you know, that they cannot vote now. >> that is pennsylvania resident will lowly. the state of pennsylvania has began airing television advertisements like this one, that are meant to simply inform those who have an id to bring it
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with them to the polls. >> if you care about this election. >> if you care about this election. >> if you have an opinion. >> if you want a voice. >> if you want to make a difference. >> if you want to vote, then show it critics show it. >> sell its critics to vote, you need an acceptable photo id with a valid expiration date. >> if you care about this country, it is time to show it. >> for more on the controversy over pennsylvania's voter id law, i'm joined by vic walczak in philadelphia, legal director for the state's aclu, one of the co-counsel on the case argued before the state supreme court thursday. in pittsburgh, jessie allen, assistant professor at the university of pittsburgh school of law. the shias litigated voting rights cases in federal court in the past and recently wrote an op-ed for the pittsburgh post- gazette called, "look at the
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history of voter id: a case cited to support pennsylvania's new voter id law instead calls it into question." we welcome you both to "democracy now!" walczak in with vic philadelphia. you just argue this case before pennsylvania supreme court. explain what happened yesterday in court. >> well, it was a good argument. the justices were very well- prepared, very interested in what was going on. at this point there had been thousands of pages of legal argument filed in various briefs, but the inescapable point that is out there is that thus far since march, the state has only issued about 7000 ids to vote. and even the lowest estimate of people who don't have id and the state is 100,000. the state has repeatedly said they do not expect to issue more than a few thousand more ids. so you're looking at a huge gap
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in the number of people who don't have the kind of i.t. they need to vote. so on election day, it is going to be a mess. that number could be as high as 1 million people here in penn the six judge panel. >> it is a six judge panel. ironically, one of the seven justices has stepped down temporarily. she is a justice out of pittsburgh. she has been indicted on campaign related fraud. certainly, there is fraud related to elections, but the kind of fraud that would be prevented by photo id is virtually nonexistent. >> and what was the questioning on the part of the three republican, three democratic judges, where were they going yesterday? >> the democratic justices were really pointing out that there is no reason for this law to be
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in effect this november, given that the state has admitted they do not have any examples of impersonation voter fraud. in fact, they signed a court binding agreement in which they admitted that even if the photo id law is blocked, that will not increase the likelihood of fraud at the polls on election day. so there's really no reason to have this election and another one of the justices kept pointing out the estimates of the number of people who are going to be disenfranchised could be way, way over 100,000 and really closer to 1 million. the only republican justice -- and it is split 3-3 -- and if there is a tie, that means we lose, the challengers of this law lose and law will be in effect in november. the one justice who is asking questions i think really was getting at the numb of the
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issue. there is a provision in the statute that suggests every voter needs to have the right kind of id on election day. and he was pressing the lawyers for the state about whether the state could really meet that requirement. candidly, the state's lawyers said that they could not meet that requirement. so i think it has given us a little bit of hope that we may be able to get this injunction before november. >> i want to play a comment from another of the plaintiffs in the aclu's case, viviette applewhite, 93 years old, has voted in nearly every election for the last 60 years. she has tried for years to obtain photo id to no avail. >> why is voting important to me? because it gives equal right to do things, that is why it is important. things that we could not do, my race could not do, when we could
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vote, we could do. this is what made it so important to me. that is why i wanted the vote in this year's just like i did before. >> let's bring professor jessie allen into this conversation, professor at the university of pittsburgh law school. how difficult it is to get voter id? >> i think it is pretty clear from the evidence that was put before the court that not everybody can get this id, and furthermore, the people who don't have this idea are not randomly distributed. it is generally harder for poor people, people who do not drive, people who live in urban centers -- they are less likely to have the requisite id already and is more difficult to go through what you need to do to obtain it. >> you have argued cases before, and you refer back in your op-ed
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piece, "look at the history of voter id: a case cited to support pennsylvania's new voter id law instead calls it into question." you go back a century. >> this is not a new thing, the idea that voter regulation that ostensibly are created to improve election integrity actually wind up creating less democracy, ok? the irony is, in 1869, an old case the trial court judge relied on to uphold the current voter id, actually, if you read the entire case, it is shockingly, overtly biased. >> this is from 150 years ago? >> shias, 1869. -- yes, 1869. the point is, this is a very old story. >> what was so biased about that case? >> the court upheld a law that
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created one set of registration procedures to the city of philadelphia, and a much easier set of registration procedures for the entire rest of the state. basically, as if that was not clean enough, the court proceeds to say the whole idea is that this will keep the rogues and strumpets and wondering arabs of the city of philadelphia from corrupting the election. there were really two things about this. first, it is distasteful to rely on a deeper into this case to uphold the democratic principle of integrity, supposedly, but more important, i think the case shows you for centuries, court's sometimes have been led to produce these abstract legal principles when really what they're doing is up holding something that is very anti- american, a very biased.
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>> i want to play recent come from republican senator pat toomey of pennsylvania. during an interview he voiced support for the state's voter id law. >> the fact is, this is designed to make it very, very easy for someone who doesn't already have an id -- of course, some 29 -- so the law makes it easy for someone to get an id. if you do not have one on election day, you can still cast a provisional ballot and then demonstrate to you say you are within reasonable time frame there after. their many forms of id that work. the state government has set up offices all over the state to allow someone to obtain an id for the purpose of voting at no charge whatsoever. it will be a little bit harder for the system to lose integrity and that is important. >> that is senator pat toomey of
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pennsylvania. vic walczak president of lamo one pennsylvania in 2008 by 600 votes. this law could disenfranchise more than 750,000 voters. some they do not have voter id. is the state even prepared to make this many photo ids? >> that is the first time i've heard the pat toomey clip, and i am appalled at some of the things he said. pennsylvania has the most stringent photo voter id law in the country. there are many other states that have some form of voter id, but they all have some safety valve that will guarantee that people who end up not having a id on election day can still vote. for instance, in georgia, anyone who does not have i deacon vote by absentee ballot. in pennsylvania, you cannot do that. in michigan and florida, if you
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show up on election day and do not have the right kind of id, you vote by provisional ballot but you also fill out an affidavit saying you are you say you are. it's a signature matches with what is in the foot to -- registration books accounts automatically. and pennsylvania, you have to go out and get a valid form of id within six days in order for your vote to count. as we showed at trial, if you're starting from scratch trying to get a new id, that will be virtually impossible to do. the number you keep throwing out, 759,000, is a number the state generated. that is our own number. it actually does not include another 700,000 voters where the state could not positively determined that they have some form of id. even the state's own numbers
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show it is over 1 million people. i don't think it is over a million people that don't have id, but somewhere between half a million and a million? i would not be surprised. if it is a close election -- and i think most people say it is likely to be closer than 2008 when obama won by 600,000 votes -- it could have an impact on the election. this year, the hanging chance of florida in 2000 could be the provisional ballot of pennsylvania for 2012 if we have a close election. >> and the state legislators in voter i.d. will allow governor romney to win the state of pennsylvania? >> that may be the first on his remark i have ever heard him make. -- the first honest remark i have ever heard him make critics of what to put this question to professor jessie allen, the cnbc host who tweeted that his father, a world war ii
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veteran would lose the eligibility to vote under the state voter id law here in pennsylvania because he does not drive, is elderly, cannot prove citizenship. less than seven hours later, the madman host tweeted authorities with pennsylvania transportation office can directly to the rescue of his father. unfortunate, 750,000 people do not have a son that could make the same appeal. >> and that is an old story. often have plaintiffs in the state moved to do what they need to do to make those people ok, but you bring up a big point could this guy is a veteran. apparently, under this restrictive law, a veterans id will not prove your eligibility because it lacks the expiration date which is one of the requirements. presumably what ought to be the best form of id, people who serve their country in the war, no. >> why does disproportionately
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affect the old, people of color, students? >> who has id and our society? there is this widespread belief, i think it is a middle-class phenomenon, the vast majority of people have but zero id. the truth is, people do. the most common form of id is the driver's license. but all of the studies that have been done over the last half a dozen years or so, including the one we conducted in pennsylvania, shows between 9% to 50% of the population in fact do not have photo id. these are not people who drive, do not jump on airplanes in flight to europe so they don't have passports. it is not that these people don't want ids, but we actually put a couple of lawyers on the stand as experts -- folks who work with low-income and homeless individuals -- and they talked about how difficult it is
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to get a photo id if you don't have one. people who are african- americans, predominantly born in the deep south in the jim crow south, a lot of times their berths were not in hospitals. if they work, they did not really care about recording the birth of black people, so those folks cannot get or certificates. what we found in a survey that we did, we call 2300 people and as the professor said, what you're looking at is disproportionately people of low income, people who make less than $20,000, about one-quarter of them do not have the kind of idea that will work. if you have a high-school education or less, more than 40% of those folks don of id. if you think about who is impacted, it is people who don't drive. where did they make you go in order to get this idea? a driver's license center. in pennsylvania, there are 10 counties where there is not a
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single licensing center. there are another 13 counties were the have one office, the only open one day a week. that is between now and election day, only seven days to go out and get one of these licenses. there are an awful lot of people who don't have the id, don't have the documents to get the id, don't have the means of transportation to be able to get to some of these outlying areas where you have to go to get it. >> and yet, amazingly, governor corbett of pennsylvania, his administration initially made what appears to be now a false claim that 99% of the people of pennsylvania to have the proper photo id. when is this court's going to hand down its decision? it is already september, just weeks away from the election. >> we are about seven weeks away from the election. obviously, try to predict when court will rule is a false
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aaron. i will not predict how they will rule, that our expectation is they will rule within the next couple of weeks, two to three weeks. this is a court used to handling election disputes on the eve of an election. they realize there needs to be some certainty one way or the other for not only the voters, but all the counties that have to administer these elections. i am confident that will make the timely decision. >> finally, a professor jessie allen, how your state fits into the country on voter id laws? what's there is been quite a trend toward enacting these laws, the many that have been upheld a been much more liberal and reasonable in the sense they allow more kinds of ideas and allow people to prove their identity different ways. this is really one of the most restrictive. >> thank you both for being with us. professor jessie allen teaches at the university of pittsburgh law school and vic walczak is
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the legal director of the american civil liberties union in pennsylvania. this is "democracy now!,", the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we're on the road in pittsburgh. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
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>> "the iron lady." this is "democracy now!,", the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we're on the road in pittsburg, headed to ohio as we swing through the swing states. today i will be in cleveland at 5:00 tonight.
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to mark adnan at kenyon college print the limit on to columbus and in athens. on sunday, in cincinnati. we are traveling through the country. you can go to to check out the full college and community media tour as we bring out the voices of the science majority. we turn to a pending execution in pennsylvania making national headlines. terrance williams known as terry, is scheduled to die and october 3. but advocates for child victims of sexual abuse are calling on governor tom corbett to grant him clemency. terry williams was convicted of two grisly murders in the 1980's. first, he was convicted of killing herbert hamilton, a 50- year-old man found naked with his throat cut by a knife. williams was tried for 3rd degree murder in the case and sentenced to 27 years -- a
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somewhat lenient charge because the murder reportedly happened after hamilton had demanded he pose naked for him. then in 1986, williams was convicted of killing a second man, and his norwood, who's been with the tire iron, set on fire, and left in the cemetery. the murder happened just three months after terry williams turned 18 years old. with the jury in the case did not know is that norwood had sexually abused williams and had allegedly, violently raped him the night before. furthermore, williams had suffered years of physical and sexual abuse by older men. most recently, evidence has emerged the prosecutors tried to make robbery seem like the motive for the case, even though william's co-defendant knew about the sexual abuse. a hearing on this part of the case is set to take place today in philadelphia. now as terry wins execution is set to take place in less than a month from october 3, five of the jurors in the case have
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since come ford said they believe life without parole would have been the appropriate sentence because the did not know all the facts. even more would cost would no, the murdered man's widow, has asked that williams' be scared. she recently wrote -- all of this comes as pennsylvania has recently dealt with two high-profile cases of sexual abuse including former penn state assistant football coach jerry sandusky. meanwhile, a bipartisan senate task force in the state is in the process of reviewing the state's death penalty. pennsylvania has the fourth largest death row in the country, one of the highest reversal rates for capital punishment cases. if williams is executed, it will be the first death row prisoner to be executed not voluntarily by the state in 50 years. i'm in the first death row prisoner to be executed of
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anyone who appealed their case. for more we're joined in philadelphia by marc bookman, executive director of the atlantic center for capital representation, form oformer puc defender, and frank cervone is executive director of the support center for child advocates. his publicly calling to commute the death sentence to life. why don't we begin with marc bookman. talk about this case. >> the most interesting thing about the case is the death penalty is supposed to be reserved for the worst of the worst. that is how all statutes are designed, that is what our supreme court has talked about. you take a look at this case and use the a young man barely 18 -- you see this young man who is pretty 18, sexually abused
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almost his entire life at the time he commits this crime, this unfortunate crime. who would say he is the worst of the worst? how would anyone this side of all the people that have committed murders in pennsylvania that this year the 18-year-old who has been socially traumatized his entire life would be the worst of the worst question yet he is the first person we're going to execute on voluntarily in 50 years. >> talk about how it is that in his or regional case, in the original trial, that it was not presented that he was repeatedly raped as he was growing up. >> frankly, practically nothing was presented in his original case. that was not unusual. the trial took place in the mid 1980's in philadelphia and virtually nothing was presented.
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in fact, the jury found no mitigating circumstances. again, this is an 18-year-old, 18 years and three months old has been sexually abused his entire life in the case itself is up out that sort of sexual abuse, yet none of it was presented to the jury. the jury found literally no mitigating circumstances, no reason at all to spare him from a death sentence. just another example of pretty inept loring -- lawyering i would say. >> who was his lawyer? what happened to his lawyer? >> i think the standard of practice in philadelphia in the mid-1980s was quite low. >> wasn't his lawyer disbarred? >> i don't know about that. that may be the case, i just don't know. but i know this sort of sexual
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trauma requires a certain expertise to be elicited. i know frank cervone to talk about that. if you meet your lawyer a few times in facing this kind of a trial, you're not likely to blurt out everything that has happened to you, all the awful things that happen to you in your lifetime. it requires a team of lawyers and experts to work slowly and carefully with a traumatized person to elicit this sort of information. it certainly was not solicited in front of this jury. >> i want to read a comment from assistant district attorney ronald eisenberg about efforts to compare terry williams to victims of convicted retired penn state assistant football coach jerry sandusky and predator priests. he said --
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frank cervone, your response? what's in fact they are very similar. this is a man who was sexually abused when he was 6. he was repeatedly abused by different men as a boy. the man he is convicted of killing for which he got the death penalty, mr. norwood, was 56 years old when he was 18 years old. i think one of the significant comparisons and similarities between the sandusky victims in this fellow -- and this fellow lies in their respective similar decisions in their lives not to disclose. it took years for these and come forward to talk about what happened to them. that is understandable. we're getting to see the priest cases, the sandusky case, and
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others in the current scene are opening people's eyes to understand why victims would elect not to disclose. carol williams knew he was facing the death penalty, yet even in the face of that kind of consequence, he could not bring himself to tell the police come to tell his lawyer, to tell anyone about this history. i have to imagine -- well, he has told his lawyers in court since then, but he was deeply ashamed, certainly confused about his sexuality. he kept at all inside. you have ask, what caused you be silent? what happened to you? >> how did your board, frank cervone head of the support center for top advocates, how did they respond you taking on this case? >> folks have been tremendously supportive. we think we're the largest volunteer lawyer program for kids in the country.
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in the span of organizations, we're not a huge place. we are run by wonderful staff and dedicated volunteer board. lawyers and professionals from the community. the question that comes up, why are we in this case? we're not a death penalty organization. we don't represent adults, but tom victim's friend important fact, we were able to see together the story of terry williams is a story about child abuse. it is a story about victimization, a story about what happens to someone who is been so victimized that they cannot tell. >> one of the victims of williams, amos norwood, led the altar boys and directed the youth leader fellowship at philadelphia's st. louis the episcopal church. he has since been accused of inappropriate touching a number of boys at the church.
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i want to play an excerpt from the interview with barbara harris, a retired bishop with the episcopal church in new amos norwood from working with him at st. barnabas church. >> what we call warden of the acolytes. that means he supervised and trains the boys who served at the altar during worship. i hold a strong belief that justice would not necessarily be served by executing this young man, given the circumstances surrounding his crime. >> that was barbara harris, a retired bishop with the episcopal church. your response, frank cervone? >> this sort of relationship is the most upsetting kind of corruption. it is one thing to take money from the church plate, but another thing to use your
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position of power and authority and influence -- really, your pastoral care, to get inside the mind and life of a boy, a young person who has been entrusted to you for care for pasturing. it looks like that is what norwood did. it helps us to understand why a person like terry williams would be confused, at a minimum. as i said earlier, to be so confused in the face of grave consequence, to feel a lack of power, to act out against him until the power so erupted that it was expressed in rage. >> briefly, marc bookman, the pennsylvania senate pointed committee recommended there been no executions until they come up with the recommendations next year.
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>> this is a committee that has been formed from a senate resolution was passed -- the two leading figures on that task force have signed on 12 other members of the advisory committee, all saying -- when we're setting a state like pennsylvania, yet understand pennsylvania has not executed anyone on voluntarily and 50 years. with highs reversal rate in capital cases of any state in the country. we bear a close study. what they're saying, with this -- with this task force is saying, let's take a close look at the pennsylvania death penalty and see if it is working properly. certainly, in this case, it did not. let's just wait until our study comes down and the report is issued before we go ahead and execute some, especially someone
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like terry williams. that seems reasonable. >> we will leave it there, but continue to follow the case of tree limbs on death row here in pennsylvania, scheduled to die october 3rd. pennsylvania has the fourth largest death row, more than 200 people on death row in the country. marc bookman and frank cervone, thank you for being with us. stay with us. ♪ [music break]
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>> "my waters on fire tonight calls >> a production of to your 20 at nyu in collaboration with this is "democracy now!,", the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. in 2010, when pittsburgh adopt a againstnce natural gas drilling. for more we're joined by the man responsible for the drilling
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ban, former pittsburgh councilman doug shields. we invited the marcellus coalition to join us on the show, but did not get a response. the what happens in the city council in 2010? >> leading up to that, we started that wholesale leasing within the city and nobody knew about it -- literally. there was a study by the university of pittsburgh or comes to the deeds office and on to hold 642 acres are least, a catholic cemetery at 200 acres was the biggest least read the can to me and said, what is going on? the more we learned about it, this started to affect other parts of the city. i introduced it rights-based bill. the effect is you cannot drill in the city of pittsburgh. it has been in place since 2010.
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nobody has challenged it. >> why we so concerned about fracking? >> it is dangerous. the institutions of our government failed miserably to do any kind of due diligence. there's not much thinking about it. no environmental studies, or health studies. now we of sick people all over the place. no one to look into it. these are people that are harmed, people that don't have water, people who of livestock that died. >> and they don't have water because? >> it was contaminated by methane or other chemicals. the industry is, "well, fracking never did anything." what about the blowout you had? >> explained fracking briefly. >> it is a method by going into a shell bed, a linear piece of
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geology, and going down and extracting from the shale, methane gas and wet gas, propane and things like that, to get oil >> and putting enormous water pressure. >> they explode charges, fractured the shale. a chemical solution all along with silica sand about 20% of the water returns and returns as radioactive material. >> half years with the opposition? >> they never came to a hearing. there were never seen. but extensive panels and the council that had people who knew what the heck you're talking about, once we understood the question we said, this is a dangerous process. there is no protection to the health, welfare and safety of this city. you're just giving us over --
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>> the state of pennsylvania saying that you have no right to decide this at the local level. >> correct. they passed the act 13 that pre- empted all zoning ordinances for just one industry -- will and gas industry. pennsylvania has a used by right enacted to drill anywhere. the same is going on in ohio. >> we're headed to ohio. thank you for this brief conversation. we will continue to follow fracking around the country. protests around the country this week on the issue of fracking. doug shields, thank you for being with us, former pittsburgh councilman, introduced an ordinance banning corporations from natural gas drilling in the city. today we will be at 5:00 at a bookstore and ended at a clock at first church in oberlin, ohio.
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