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Carol Moseley Braun Drops Out of Presidential Race; Interview With Wife of Spalding Gray

Aired January 15, 2004 - 20:00   ET


PAULA ZAHN, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening. Thanks so much for joining us tonight. I'm Paul Zahn.
The world, the news, the names, the faces, and where we go from here on this Thursday, January 15, 2004.


ZAHN (voice-over): Four days and counting to the Iowa caucuses, one Democrat drops out.

CAROL MOSELEY BRAUN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: So I make this recommendation with the most sincerity.

ZAHN: And then signs that the race is tighter than ever.

Plus, an Illinois man faces gun charges for shooting an intruder who had broken into his home twice in 24 hours. A case of self- defense or should he be punished?

And, on the eve of his arraignment, a surge of fan support for Michael Jackson.


ZAHN: Those stories and much more, but, first, here's what you need to know right now at the top of the hour.

Michael Jackson is adding to his defense team. With his arraignment on child molestation charges tomorrow, the singer has hired another high-profile attorney to help him in his case.

CNN national correspondent Frank Buckley joins us from Santa Maria, California, with the very latest on that.

Hi, Frank.


Expecting the formal announcement of this surprise move on the eve of arraignment shortly. But CNN has learned that Ben Brafman has been added to the defense team as a co-lead defense counsel, Brafman a former Manhattan district attorney, perhaps best known for his defense of Sean "P. Diddy" Combs on bribery and weapons charges.

He's a friend of Mark Geragos. We are told that he will be here in Santa Maria, California, tomorrow for the arraignment of Michael Jackson. We've also learned that Michael Jackson will in fact enter a plea of not guilty tomorrow. Not a surprise that he's entering a plea of not guilty, but it is perhaps news that he is in fact going to enter a plea tomorrow. He could have continued that for a future date, but apparently tomorrow intending to enter a plea of not guilty -- Paula.

ZAHN: Frank Buckley, thanks so much for that report. We'll see you a bit later on tonight.

The big chill sweeping the Northeast with record low temperatures. The extremely dangerous weather is being felt all across the country. In Boston, windchills could make it feel like 45 degrees below zero tonight.

And new photographs of Saddam Hussein apparently taken shortly after he was pulled from his hiding place are now being made public. CNN has not confirmed their authenticity, but senior government officials say the photos do appear to be authentic.

"In Focus" tonight, you can almost see the finish line on the flat Iowa horizon, just three full days of campaigning to go. On Monday, the Democratic candidates chalk up their first wins and losses. Then, a week later, on Tuesday, it's on to New Hampshire.

Well, today, Carol Moseley Braun backed out and asked her supporters to back Howard Dean instead. Plus, the latest polls show a tightening race.

Senior political correspondent Candy Crowley joins us live now from Des Moines -- hi, Candy.


Right here in the middle of winter in Iowa, we have a white-hot race. The polls, several of them, over the past couple of days have shown a tightening. We have the latest one now out of KCCI, a local station here in just -- released about an hour ago. It still shows Dean in the lead. But the truth is, that's virtually meaningless, with only one point between he Senator Kerry. It really is the trajectory here.

Dean is down seven points from a week ago, Kerry up 3, Gephardt also down, and Edwards up 10. What this basically does is put them all in the game. And what a game it is. You can tell it from the urgency of the stump speeches, which are all the same, but, boy, sure have a different tone. The closing of the polls and the crashing in of the calendar makes for a lot of excitement and a lot of tension here, as they're going out for all those undecided voters.

As you mentioned, Carol Moseley Braun out of the race now. So that's one less person to worry about. She, of course, said anyone who stood up for her should now stand up for Howard Dean. Unclear, if you have to get out of the race, how much support actually go to Dean that Carol Moseley Braun actually could garner here in Iowa. Nonetheless, better to have you for you than against you. So the Dean campaign was pleased with that and also tossed off the polls today, saying, look, polls don't matter. It's all about organization. And that is pretty much what all of the other candidates are saying. Edwards, Kerry, Dean, all of them saying, I don't listen to the polls, which is what political people always tell us.

But they sure do make a difference in terms of perception. So, what you fight now is any kind of idea that you might be getting -- you might be going down or you might be going up, because you're afraid it will meet the expectations game. A lot of tough commercials, too, Paula.

ZAHN: Well, that's for sure. But you can't ignore the kind of bounce Senator Kerry and Edwards have gotten this week in most of the polls you've crunched. Why are they getting a second look?

CROWLEY: I think they're getting a second look because Howard Dean's getting a second look. If you -- if you -- it's interesting, because when Howard Dean -- somebody dredged up a comment he made about four years ago about the Iowa caucuses. That got huge play here in Iowa.

and while I don't think it's a definitive thing for how people vote, it made them look back at other things he had said. So I think there's a little early buyers remorse before they buy. They're checking it out again. And they're checking out Kerry, who's gotten a little more animated. They're checking out Edwards, who got a "Des Moines Register" endorsement, who had a couple of boffo reviews for some recent debates.

So they're looking around. And I think it's less about how their campaigns change than that they they're looking at Howard Dean and thinking, is this really a good idea?

ZAHN: Thank you very much, senior political correspondent Candy Crowley.

More now on some emerging issues and how they could affect the results in Iowa, then in New Hampshire, from our next guest.

Jamie Rubin is Wesley Clark's senior foreign policy adviser. He joins us from Washington tonight.

Hi, Jamie.


ZAHN: Thank you.

And from Des Moines this evening, regular contributor Joe Klein of "TIME" magazine.

Good to see you as well.

Joe, I'm going to start with you tonight.


ZAHN: Could you make the argument that Governor Dean peaked too early?

KLEIN: Well, sure you could make that argument. I think you could also make the argument that people are tuning in.

Look, Howard Dean may still win this. He is the best organized person in this state. But he is currently, as Candy just said, getting a second look because people worry about his temperament. He seems like a hothead. And what they want is someone who will be able to stand up calmly next to George W. Bush and rip him to shreds.

ZAHN: Give us a sense of how volatile it is out there. I know you've spent time with a number of potential voters out there. And it seems that their minds were swayed at two different appearances in the same day.

KLEIN: Well, it's kind of hilarious.

I mean, I was at an Edwards event today. And I met a woman and I asked her who she was for. And she said that she was divided. It was either going to be Dean or Edwards. And then she heard Edwards speak and afterwards, she said, I'm still divided. It's going to be either Kerry or Edwards. I said, what happened to Dean? And she said, well, as Edwards was talking, I remembering the speech Dean gave last night, and he seemed kind of like a hothead. So he's out.

Furthermore, she told me that she's in charge of one of the caucuses in Ankeny, a town near here, and that everybody she's spoken to so far is undecided.

ZAHN: Let's bring Jamie in the discussion now.

Jamie, your candidate, of course, spending all of his time in New Hampshire, far more time than the other candidates have spent over the last five days. Clarify for us tonight some comments your candidate has made about the war in Iraq that a lot of folks are interpreting as highly contradictory.

We're going to put up on the screen these thoughts, so they can interpret them as well. First, he said, last October -- quote -- "I have been consistent. I have been against this war from the beginning."

Now, how does that square with what he said in his congressional testimony two weeks before the vote on authorizing the war in Iraq? Quote: "I want to underscore that I think the United States should not categorize this action as preemptive. As Richard Perle so eloquently pointed out, this is a problem that is longstanding. It's been a decade in the making. It needs to be dealt with, and the clock is ticking on this."

Why isn't this contradictory? RUBIN: Well, very simply, Paula, nobody, General Clark included, denied that Iraq was a threat last fall.

And if the Bush administration had gone to the United Nations and received international support to act militarily, it wouldn't have been a preemptive war. It would have been acting to implement a U.N. resolution. What General Clark was saying then, and what he's said all along, is, there was a problem, there was a threat. He supported taking it to the United Nations. He supported a diplomatic solution, backed if necessary by force.

But what he didn't support was launching this war when the whole world, or so much of the world, was against us, when we didn't have a plan for what happens after victory, and when the threat wasn't imminent. That is why he has said it was the wrong war at the wrong time. And instead, we should have focused our military resources, our intelligence resources, our diplomatic effort, that's been exclusively focused on Iraq for the last year, on dealing with the threat from Osama bin Laden.

And that's what his rationale was then and what it is today. The point is that, Iraq is a threat, but it wasn't so urgent and so imminent that we had to divert the entire effort of the United States government toward Saddam Hussein, when bin Laden is still out there.

ZAHN: Joe, you have just heard Jamie's explanation. Do you think voters will buy it? Or will they see these two statements -- and then there are several more we could put up that we don't have time to go through. But do you buy that explanation or are those statements contradictory?

KLEIN: Well, Jamie is incredibly artful and he's kind of accurate.

I've been digging through this testimony that Clark gave on September 26, 2002. And he very clearly said, I think it's not time yet to use force against Iraq. But he also said very clearly that he would be in favor of the resolution which gave George W. Bush a blank check to go to war, because it was required to leverage any hope of solving this problem short of war.

So the general is accurate when he says that he was against the use of force at that point, but he is not telling the truth when he says that he would have voted against the resolution. He was for the resolution, just as John Kerry, Dick Gephardt and the others were.

ZAHN: Gentlemen, we've got to leave it there.

Jamie Rubin, thank you for joining us tonight. Joe Klein, as always, thank you, too.

Now for a look behind the scenes of the Dean machine, just days ago riding the highs of confidence. Now things have changed.

Jason Bellini reports.


JASON BELLINI, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The clock is ticking, their lead shrinking.

(on camera): It's now 8:00 on Wednesday and in Des Moines, Iowa, and this is where Howard Dean's road trip kicks off.

(voice-over): This may be the Midwest, but the vibe of these events now is anything but laid back.

Dean's new bus is unveiled. It will take him to 14 Iowa towns between now and Saturday. A key message to his supporters along the way.


BELLINI: We need more from you now than just your vote.

DEAN: We are going to take America back. You're going to take America back. It's going to happen five nights from tonight. We need your help, your vote.

BELLINI: Martin Sheen from the program "The West Wing" came all the way to Iowa.

QUESTION: What else can Governor Dean do to appear presidential?

MARTIN SHEEN, ACTOR: Keep doing what he's doing, and stick to it like a stamp.

BELLINI: The staff, rushing in and out of his bus, are formal, stern, and very controlling of the media.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Nobody else is going in, guys. All the back-stage stuff, this was it.

BELLINI: The governor himself isn't messing around either.

QUESTION: Governor, can you say how concerned you are about the poll numbers?

DEAN: We'll talk about that at the press deal afterwards.


DEAN: It is a lovely sunny day in Iowa again.

QUESTION: What can you talk about now?

MOSELEY BRAUN: It's a beautiful day in Iowa.

DEAN: It is, isn't it?

BELLINI: The governor is following the folksy traditions of the Iowa primaries, but with intensity. Right now, he knows he can't afford to miss. Jason Bellini, CNN, Carroll, Iowa.



DEAN: I opposed the war in Iraq and I'm against spending another $87 billion there.


ZAHN: Coming up next, we'll stick with Iowa and show you the latest ads that the Democrats are using to attack each other.

Also, as the search continues for missing actor Spalding Gray, we will have an exclusive interview with his wife.

And with Michael Jackson one day away from his arraignment, we're going to see how his fans are standing by him.


ZAHN: Welcome back.

The Democrats are spending plenty of money in Iowa on advertising. And while some are taking a positive approach, others are using these last few days to attack their rivals.

Here's Judy Woodruff.



NARRATOR: How much do you really know about Howard Dean?


JUDY WOODRUFF, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In the final days, Iowa television has become a battlefield.

DEAN: I'm going after everybody because I'm tired of being the pin cushion here.

WOODRUFF: And so he is, just weeks after urging his rivals to dial down the rhetoric.


NARRATOR: Where did the Washington Democrats stand on the war? Dick Gephardt wrote the resolution to authorize war. John Kerry and John Edwards both voted for the war.


WOODRUFF: Howard Dean and Dick Gephardt, both facing a crucial test in the first-of-the-nation caucuses, are the only two major candidates throwing TV daggers in the Hawkeye State.

HOWARD KURTZ, "RELIABLE SOURCES": The tone of the air wars in Iowa have taken a dramatic turn here in the final days from upbeat health care spots to Dean and Gephardt just ripping each other.

WOODRUFF: Dean has spent about $250,000 on Iowa ad time in the past seven days. Gephardt has shelled out even more, $300,000-plus, according to one estimate. Even dovish Dennis Kucinich is getting into the act.


REP. DENNIS KUCINICH (D-OH), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Unfortunately, even Howard Dean says we have to keep our troops there for years. Sounds like another Vietnam.


WOODRUFF: But Kucinich's comparatively small-time spending means his ads probably aren't having as much of an effect.


SEN. JOHN EDWARDS (D-NC), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I believe in the politics of what's possible.


WOODRUFF: Keeping the peace, John Edwards and John Kerry, both on the air in the Hawkeye State, but with positive ads only. Still, we bet Iowans will be happy to see those spots go away as well.

Judy Woodruff, CNN, Iowa.


ZAHN: Coming up, we're going to debate the president's $1.5 billion plan to promote marriage.

And we'll have an exclusive interview with the wife of actor Spalding Gray, who has been missing since the weekend.


ZAHN: Welcome back.

President Bush wants to spend $1.5 billion to promote marriage. The initiative is drawing tentative applause from some conservative Christian groups, but it's also being blasted as election-year politics.

Joining us from Washington for an exclusive interview is Wade Horn, assistant secretary for health and human services. He will oversee the funding for the initiative. And from our New York studio tonight, Gloria Feldt, the president of Planned Parenthood.

Welcome to both of you.


ZAHN: Gloria, research has been done over the years, basically saying that children seem to do better in homes when there are two parents, parents who happen to be married. What is wrong with this initiative?

FELDT: Well, there's no question that families need more help than they're getting right now. But the problem with this initiative is that it seems to be more ideology than help.

ZAHN: Why is that?

FELDT: And that's what I'm concerned about.

Well, when you look at all of the excellent programs that already exist, and you see that they are getting starved, literally starved, for funding by this administration -- for example, Head Start programs are having to serve fewer children. A program in Ohio is serving 6,000 fewer children alone and has closed down many centers.

Family planning programs that enable people to responsibly plan and space their child-rearing, so they can take care of the children that they have -- that's one of the main sources of stress in a family, are not being funded, so that they can properly do that.


ZAHN: So your core argument, let me cut straight to it, is that there isn't enough money to fund all of these programs? Is that what you're saying?

FELDT: Well, I think there are two things, Paula.

One is that this administration is starving the programs that are well equipped and could be providing these programs, and, secondly, that we don't have enough information yet about what this program is all about. And, on the surface, it looks like it's more ideology than help.

ZAHN: Mr. Horn, let's talk about that for a moment. What evidence do you have that any of these programs in existence now actually work in promoting the institution of marriage?

WADE HORN, ASST. SECY. FOR HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES: Well, there's a lot of evidence that marriage education services can help couples develop good problem-solving, listening and communication skills.

And what we know is that what distinguishes healthy and stable marriages from unhealthy and unstable marriages is not the frequency of conflict, but how couples manage that conflict. If they avoid conflict or they escalate it, that usually leads to unhealthy, unhappy and unstable marriages. But if they can negotiate conflict in positive, healthy ways, then the couple reports higher levels of satisfaction and happiness and greater marital stability over time. And so all we're saying is, let's help low-income couples access the kinds of services that middle-class and more affluent couples can afford to purchase, so that they can build strong and healthy marriages. But the decision about whether to get married or not is something government ought not to get involved in and will not get involved in under this initiative.

ZAHN: So what problem do you have with that, Gloria?

FELDT: Well, we already know that there will be discrimination, that it's not going to be totally inclusive.

For example, they've already said that it won't serve same-sex couples. But that leads to some other questions. I mean, how many other people will be excluded? How many other gag rules will there be? These are the kinds of questions that need to be answered. And I believe the administration should be answering it. Will they serve single moms, who are struggling to keep their families together?

What about couples who aren't married, may have a couple of children, and who need to be helped, who need this kind of help? And, again, let me state that there are so many organizations...


FELDT: I mean, look, family planning programs get less than $300 million a year to provide services to millions of people.


FELDT: They're talking about $1.5 billion to provide programs that are not even being explained to the American public. And they're very ideological.

ZAHN: Let's give Mr. Horn a chance to address some of your concerns.

What about the question of single moms? Would they be covered under this program? And would couples who are not married who have children be covered under this program?

HORN: Well, if we were to say to a single mom, you must go to a marriage education program, I think Gloria would be here attacking me for that -- for doing that.

Obviously, anyone couple that is contemplating marriage or who is already married would be eligible to receive services, marriage education services. But if marriage is not a relevant issue for them, if a single mom is not in the process of getting married, why would we want to provide marriage education services to that single mom? Why would she want it?

But there's lots of other services that we would want to give to that single-parent family. We would want to give that single-parent child care assistance, Medicaid, health care assistance, assistance with job training, education, employment services. Gloria seems to think that what we're doing now is substituting marriage education for every other service that's available to low-income families. It's not true.

FELDT: No, what I'm saying is that there are many of these services and many fine organizations that are capable of providing these services whose budgets have been decimated by this administration.


HORN: But you're incorrect about that. For example, one of the things that you said earlier


FELDT: May I just finish my sentence?

ZAHN: Unfortunately, we only have 10 seconds left for this segment. We have got to hit a commercial break.


The sound of this is that it will be more ideology, telling people what they should be doing with their lives.

HORN: Not true.

FELDT: Than providing them with the services they need to make their own judgments and responsible decisions, which they're perfectly capable of doing.

ZAHN: All right, obviously, the debate will continue. And we would love to have both Wade Horn and Gloria Feldt back.

FELDT: Thank you.

ZAHN: As this continues to go on. Of course, a lot of folks are wondering whether this ultimately leads to a constitutional ban on same-sex marriages. And that, we will have to debate on another night.

Again, thanks, both of you.

FELDT: Thanks, Paula.

ZAHN: And the search continues today for actor Spalding Gray, who has been missing since the weekend. We're going to have an exclusive interview with his wife.

Also, a look ahead at tomorrow's action in the Michael Jackson case as he faces arraignment.

And tomorrow, how can cities pay the increasing costs of repeated terror alerts? We're going to ask the head of counterterrorism for the LAPD.


ZAHN: And we're back.

Here are some of the headlines you need to know now at the bottom of the hour.

You remember her, Katherine Harris? Well, she may run for the Senate. As Florida secretary of state, she managed the disputed presidential vote count of 2000. She also won a seat in Congress just about two years later. She's expected to make an announcement tomorrow.

Readers of hundreds of newspapers may find something missing this weekend, their copy of "USA Weekend." The publishers have to hold back more than 10 million copies because of an illustration accidentally included a racial epithet and there's no time to print a corrected edition.

And the Mars rover Spirit has taken its first ride on Martian soil. It took 78 seconds for the rover to travel 10 feet. In a few days, Spirit is expected to begin searching for evidence that Mars may once have sustained life.

Roger Ebert once called actor/writer Spalding Gray a spellbinding storyteller. Here's why.


SPALDING GRAY, ACTOR/WRITER: I'm running for the front yard. I'm in my underwear. The entire floor turns to Jell-O under my feet. There's no substance. I get to the front door and there's Renee (ph) jammed naked in the jam. She jammed in the jam. I'm trying to get under her.

I'm trying to get out. I slip out and boom. I'm out on the front lawn. And there are all my neighbors at last in their underwear going, hi-ho, good morning. You survived the earthquake. Welcome to California. Welcome aboard.


ZAHN: Well, Spalding Gray was reported missing last Sunday, one day after he called his young son to tell him he loved him and he'd be home soon.

Well, tonight, we have an exclusive interview with Gray's wife, who says he has a history of severe depression and has attempted suicide in the past.

Kathie Russo joins us now from Sag Harbor, Long Island.

Thank you so much for being with us tonight. Welcome.

KATHIE RUSSO, WIFE OF SPALDING GRAY: Thank you. ZAHN: First of all, how are you holding up?

RUSSO: It's really tough. I mean, we're in limbo. We don't know what to expect each day. We're just waiting for a phone call that they've found him.

But I just wanted to correct one thing. You said he's suffered a long history of severe depression. It really hasn't been

**************************************** RUSSO: what to expect each day. We're just waiting for a phone call that they've found him.

But I just wanted to correct one thing you said. He's suffered a long history of severe depression. It really hasn't been -- I mean, he's suffered depression really since the car accident two and a half years ago.

ZAHN: And that was a car accident in Ireland where he suffered some extensive physical injuries.

RUSSO: In Ireland.

ZAHN: What are police telling you now about what they think might have happened to your husband, and how are they helping you?

RUSSO: Well, they're checking in. They're getting hundreds of tips. The main reason why I agreed to do this interview is that, I just feel the more media coverage this case gets, the more tips will come in, and the police agree.

They're telling me that they don't have anything concrete right now, unfortunately. That he was seen on Staten Island Ferry riding back and forth on Friday. And Saturday they're tracing the phone calls that he made and that he received from our loft in Manhattan.

And that's really about it right now. We don't have a lot to go on right now.

ZAHN: And that phone call that was traced to your apartment was in fact a phone call your husband apparently made to your 6-year-old son?

RUSSO: Right.

ZAHN: Are you able to share with us what he said?

RUSSO: Basically he was -- well, he told the children he was going out that night at 6:30 to meet a friend, and that he would be back at 9:00. And he called in at 9:00 and said he was running a little late and just checking in to see if they were doing okay. And that he would be home soon. And that he loved him.

ZAHN: And now that police have had a chance to analyze that, and the time frame of his disappearance, who do they believe is the last person your husband had contact with?

RUSSO: Our son. That's the only thing that they've come up with. They have come up with absolutely no one who encountered or saw him on Saturday evening, unfortunately.

ZAHN: And there apparently is a person they believe may have come into contact with him near the ferry, maybe earlier than that? What can you tell us about that?

RUSSO: You mean on Friday?

ZAHN: Yes.

RUSSO: On Friday evening, there was a man named Billy Doyle who, I believe, works on the Staten Island Ferry, and he read the "New York Times" quo article on Tuesday, called police, and he also left a message on my machine in New York. And said that he saw Spalding riding back and forth on the ferry Friday evening, in between 5:00 and 7:30 pm. And then Spalding met us at our loft around 7:30.

ZAHN: How would you describe his state of mind the last time you were with him?

RUSSO: Well, this is what -- the strange thing is, yes, he's been suffering from depression since the car accident, but since late September, we've seen an amazing improvement for him, where he was hopeful, he was getting back on stage. He was working on new material for the last three months.

He was doing two nights a week at a little theater in the East Village PS-122, and coming up with brand-new material which is, you know, really hard to do.

He was interacting more with the children. We were seeing glimpses of what we called the old daddy before the car accident. He would, you know, take it upon himself something simple like making a pot of soup. Something he enjoyed doing before. And just interacting more with people people, socially, dinner parties, whatever. And just -- and trying to help me out around home. And really making an effort to, you know, be present.

ZAHN: I guess it's so difficult for any of us to listen to you, to truly understand the state of limbo you are in. On one hand, you express this great hope, on the other hand I suppose you have to be prepared for the worst, don't you.

RUSSO: I'm sorry to say, yes. Yes. And we're going on what, day six tomorrow of not hearing from him. And he's never done anything like this before where, you know his past suicide attempts, he left notes right away for me to see. And there's nothing. You know, this time there's no signs, no letter, nothing.

ZAHN: You obviously are very proud of what your husband has accomplished.

RUSSO: Oh, yes. ZAHN: What do you want people to know about him, and his body of work and how he treated you and the rest of your family?

RUSSO: Well, No. 1, he's a great, great father. And for me, as a companion, the most interesting man I've ever met in my life. We were so compatible. We'd do stuff outdoors all the time. We enjoyed many activities outside. And just -- he was my best friend.

And I want to spend more years with him. I want to find him and hopefully something will come out of this. And all the media coverage this week, for someone to call in and say, I know where he is, or give us some kind of clue that will lead to him, to a tip.

His work was unique. You know, no one else -- he invented the monologue. He was the father of autobiographical monologues. It amazes me, what really amazes me is just how many people have contacted me, his fans, how many people he's made an impact on with his work. And it's just really gratifying to hear people to call and tell me about this.

ZAHN: Our thoughts are with you as you and the rest of your family go through this very difficult time.

RUSSO: Thank you.

ZAHN: Kathy Russo, thank you for joining us tonight and we wish you good luck.

RUSSO: Thank you very much.

ZAHN: We're going to take a short break. We'll be right back.


ZAHN: If you've ever wanted to hear good news about cancer, here it is. The American Cancer Society is out with the yearly roundup of numbers. And overall, fewer people are dying from cancer, however, the lung cancer death rate for women continues to be troubling, and climbing.

Joining us now, Dr. Larry Norton, chief of breast cancer programs at Memorial Sloan Ketering Cancer Center here in New York, always good to see you, welcome.


ZAHN: Let's look at some of the numbers beyond the obvious here. So, we see the death rates on the decline.

NORTON: That's right.

ZAHN: What is the deal with women and lung cancer?

NORTON: Well, it's good news and bad news, it works together. The good news is that a lot of things we're doing are really working: better detection, better therapy. The problem with smoking is that it causes cancer. And I think that's what we're seeing with the women.

As women took up smoking, more really after World War II, and now it's increasing, even younger women are smoking. We see 11-year-olds, 12-year-olds smoking. This is extraordinary. We're also seeing lung cancer at younger ages because people are smoking at younger ages. It's a terrible situation.

ZAHN: And it's even deadlier when the young kids contract it.


ZAHN: Let's look at something else that may help explain this phenomenon. Look at these numbers on the screen. Of the NCI research budget for research on all cancers, $4.7 billion, the latest budget numbers for tobacco advertising is more than double at $11 billion.

NORTON: Yes. And that's just domestic advertising. That doesn't count worldwide advertising for tobacco. That's just the domestic U.S. advertising budget.

ZAHN: So, how do you plan to confront that?

NORTON: You get what you pay for. Americans are spending more to teach people to smoke than they are to deal with the cure of all cancers. That's really what's happening. As long as that's going to go on, as long as people are going to respond to advertising, as long as people are going to sell these deadly products, we're going to have deaths from cancer.

ZAHN: There is a statement from the American Cancer Society that is startling, not particularly related to what we were talking about, but that approximately one-third of the cancer deaths will be related to nutrition, physical activity, overweight or obesity, and other lifestyle factors. That mean, then, that one-third of the over 560,000 deaths from cancer could be prevented every year?

NORTON: It's probably more than that, if you count all things together. It's at least that. The smoking, alcohol abuse, obesity, sun exposure causing all sorts of skin cancers, certain diseases that can be treated that cause cancer, and if you treat them you could eliminate that. That's what's going on. If people were to take care of themselves properly, we would see a dramatic change in the death rate.

ZAHN: You talk about top causes of preventable cancer. Smoking, sun exposure, obesity, alcohol and then we can go on with our graphics to point out something else. Two more cases of preventable cancer, hepatitis, HPV, human papilloma virus, oral contraceptive, and hormone replacement therapy.

NORTON: That's right. Estrogen has definitely increased breast cancer risk. We know that for sure and it's been used quite wildly and that's also a factor. Now, most breast cancers are probably not in people who have gotten it that way, but it certainly contributes. All of these things add together. A lot of little things can add together to come together with a big risk. Someone aims a machine gun at you, your odds of getting hit with any one bullet are low, but your odds of getting hit with some bullets are very high and that's what we're seeing with a lot of the preventable causes of cancer. People have a lot of different exposures, and they all add up over a lifetime.

ZAHN: So what's the best advice you can give us all tonight to confront cancer?

NORTON: First of all, education. That's the most important thing. Learn what these factors are. Learn how dangerous it is. Most smokers don't know that a smoker has a 50 percent chance of dying of the smoking if you count heart disease, strokes, along with the cancer.

Learn really what's going on. And then do the things that are necessary to really help yourself. Screening, too. Mammography, colonoscopy, rectal exams for men for prostate cancer. These are all things that can make a huge difference. We know a lot right now about how to prevent cancer, how to treat cancer properly, how to detect it in the early stages.

We have to do those things. And we have to concentrate on the issue of research. We have to do more research. We're very close to the end here. We're getting very close to really understanding the basis for cancer. Now is the time to work harder and to put that same effort that we put into as a nation advertising cancer-causing substances. We have to put that same energy into getting rid of these diseases.

ZAHN: Thank you for educating us tonight. Dr. Norton, always appreciate your time.

NORTON: Thank you.

ZAHN: A case of self-defense that's renewing the debate over gun control laws. Illinois man is facing charges for shooting an intruder in his home. Someone who broke into his home twice.

And a look ahead at tomorrow's court date tomorrow for Michael Jackson. His arraignment on child molestation charges.


ZAHN: Outside Chicago, one man's attempt to defend himself is renewing the debate over handgun laws. Chicago bureau chief Jeff Flock has details.


JEFF FLOCK, CNN CHICAGO BUREAU CHIEF: Rare crime in the quiet affluent Chicago suburb of Wilmette, Illinois. Police say this man, wearing a ski mask, breaks into the house. The homeowner calls 911 but also gets his gun and shoots the burglar who then steals the homeowner's SUV to drive himself to the hospital where he's arrested. The burglar is charged with felonies, but the homeowner is charged, too. Not for protecting himself, but for violating the town's ban on having a handgun.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think he did the right thing. I think the Wilmette ordinance should be repealed.

FLOCK: An angry meeting of the village board this week packed with gun proponents, not including the police chief.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: My experience in this village is, that handguns create a hazard in the home.

FLOCK: All but nine states limit in some way where communities can pass local gun laws. The District of Columbia and Chicago and five towns around it are the only ones to make handguns illegal. The law has been on the book for 15 years in Wilmette but now some are rethinking.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If I owned a gun, I would probably shoot someone who came into my house who was burglarizing it as well.

FLOCK: The homeowner faces a $750 fine. I'm Jeff Flock, CNN in Chicago.

ZAHN: And joining us now, two people on opposite sides. This debate over guns, Thom Mannard of the Illinois council against handgun violence. And in Washington, Larry Pratt of Gun Owners of America. Good to see both of you.

So Larry, do you think this homeowner should have to pay a fine?

LARRY PRATT, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, GUN OWNERS OF AMERICA: I think the homeowner should be given a medal. What we're seeing in the renewal of this debate, we're exposing once again the immorality of gun control, particularly gun bans where we're saying to somebody, well, we're not going to prosecute you for having defended yourself, but we are going to prosecute you because you used the most effective means available.

We've told the criminal class, not just in Wilmette but Washington, D.C. and England, that you're going to be safer if you work in these areas because people can't defend themselves. And the criminals get the message and crime has gone off the charts in Washington, D.C. and England. I think what we have to do is rethink this. And take a look at the data. We know that people in this country use guns some 7,000 times a day in self-defense. Far outstripping any criminal uses of these guns.

ZAHN: Tom, why do you have a problem with this homeowner defending himself?

THOM MANNARD, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, ILLINOIS COUNCIL AGAINST HANDGUN BAN: Well, Paula, in regards to defending himself, we don't look at that as the issue. The fact of the matter, is that the residents in the village of Wilmette along with law enforcement and elected officials there believe that their community is safer from gun violence by having this prohibition in place. ZAHN: But Thom, let me ask you that. There are only six municipalities in the country, including the one where this shooting happened, that have a handgun ban. The country doesn't seem to be behind these bans. Why do you support them?

MANNARD: We support the ability of people within their own communities to address the issue of gun violence in a way that they feel is appropriate. The police chief indicated, and the numbers indicate, that a gun in the home is much more likely to be used in an accidental shooting, in suicide, or in a domestic dispute than it is to be used in self-defense.

And we believe that if the people of a certain municipality believe that their municipality is safe from gun violence with this type of prohibition, then they should have the ability to do so.

ZAHN: Larry, do you have a problem with municipalities having that control? Is that the issue here?

PRATT: I don't think it's the issue, because Mr. Mannard's group and other defense groups are happy passing gun control legislation at the national level. That's just bunk that they believe in respecting local wishes and local control. What they're...

ZAHN: But why should -- hang on, Larry, why shouldn't local wishes be honored?

PRATT: Well, first of all, it's unconstitutional. Second, it's immoral. And thirdly, it was really stupid. It was legal to use a rifle in the self-defense situation. If this homeowner had used a rifle, he scored 50 percent of the time when he shot at a moving target in the dark in his house. If I could shoot that well, people would come to me for lessons. But two of the shots didn't hit. If he had used a rifle that had so much more energy, he would have probably had a round going through two or three of his neighbors' houses down the line.

ZAHN: Lets ask Tom about that.

Thom, would it have been more responsible for the homeowner to have used a different type of weapon here?

MANNARD: Well, the fact of the matter is, is that the homeowner could have had a firearm in the home. This was a prohibition on a handgun. In regards to Larry mentioning that it's unconstitutional, well this prohibition, as well as other prohibitions within the state of Illinois, have been found to be constitutional. If they were unconstitutional, they would have been taken off the books many years ago. And in fact, just yesterday, a judge ruled that the D.C. prohibition on handguns is in fact constitutional. And, therefore, the constitutional issue is irrelevant. What's relevant is what people in these communities believe will keep them safe from gun violence.

And if you look at...


MANNARD: And the fact of the matter is that firearm death and injury is at a very low rate in the village of Wilmette.

ZAHN: Larry, we need a real quick last word from you.

PRATT: It is immoral to tell somebody, oh, be warm and be filled, go. And what they're telling them in Wilmette is go inside your room and lock your room and call 911. Well, once somebody's invaded your house, that means he's an aggressor, he's an invader. And in every jurisdiction of the country, including Wilmette, you have the right to defend yourself with force, and you should have the right to use the best means available, a handgun.

ZAHN: All right, gentleman, we're going to have to leave it there. You've certainly helped raise our consciousness about a very heated issue there in the Midwest. Larry Pratt and Thom Mannard, thank you for both of your perspectives.

MANNARD: Thanks, Paula.

ZAHN: The day before Michael Jackson's arraignment, we'll see how his fans are coming to his defense. We'll be right back.



ZAHN: Michael Jackson will be arraigned tomorrow in a California courtroom. He will have lots of support from his fans who demonstrated by the hundreds for him today. Early tomorrow they're planning a massive show of support outside the courthouse. They will call it a caravan of love.

Joining us from Los Angeles is Brian Michael Stoller, a friend of Jackson and a filmmaker. Jackson has a role in Stoller's new film, "Miss Castaway." He is also the author of the book "Film Making for Dummies."

And joining us from Santa Maria, is CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin, who does legal issues for dummies.

Hey, how you doing, gentlemen?

Nice to see you both.

Jeffrey, let's talk about the news of the evening. We've learned that Michael Jackson will plead innocent to these charges tomorrow. He also has a new member on his team.

Should the prosecution be nervous about that?

JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: You bet. You know, Paula, oftentimes people ask me, who is the best trial lawyer you know. I always answer the same way, Benjamin Brafman, a lawyer in New York. He is an absolutely sensational lawyer. Not as well known as the Johnnie Cochrans of the world. But Michael Jackson, whatever else has done, has made an select choice today.

ZAHN: So, what can we expect to happen in court tomorrow?

TOOBIN: It's going to be a pretty straightforward arraignment. He'll plead not guilty. There will also be legal argument over whether there's a gag order in the case. The press will make its case for the cameras in the courtroom. And the -- there will be legal issues -- legal discussion about whether the results of the search warrant will be released to the public.

ZAHN: And why is this gag order issue such a big deal?

Prosecution wants it, the defense is strenuously fighting it.

TOOBIN: They're in these high profile cases, gag orders are often imposed to try to keep a damper on some of the publicity. They really often don't really work very well. What they really do is stop the lawyers from having press conferences. Mark Geragos is a master of the press conference, likes to have them, wants to continue doing it. And judges tend not to like that. My guess is, some sort of gag order will be imposed.

ZAHN: Brian, do you have any perspective on how Michael Jackson is viewing tomorrow?

BRIAN MICHAEL STOLLER, FRIEND OF JACKSON: Well, obviously, you know, Michael isn't having a great time having to deal with this. But I think that he's going to be prepared. And he's psyched himself up to deal with this. He knows he's innocent. And he just wants the rest of the world to know that, too.

ZAHN: What do you think he's most fearful of?

STOLLER: That's a good question. I think -- I don't think -- if there's anything he's fearful of is that he's just treated fairly by the legal system. I think that's it. Because when a person knows they're innocent, they have nothing to hide.

ZAHN: It's been interesting to see how his fans have reacted over the last several weeks. We just reported at the top of this introduction that hundreds of fans will be outside the courthouse.

Have you heard any feedback, or any reaction from Michael to this development?

STOLLER: On this, I haven't, no. But I did see Michael when they had the event, the party for him up at Neverland back last month. And I just know that he really appreciates the support, because, you know, again, like the party they had at the ranch, it was -- you know, he's not alone. And I think that this is helping a lot. By having this support.

ZAHN: And this is all happening against the backdrop of this very small community of Santa Maria.

Jeffrey Toobin, how is this town prepared to deal with the massive scrutiny it's under?

TOOBIN: There are a lot of cops here. There are more satellite trucks than any case I have ever covered since O.J. Simpson. I'll be interested to see how many fans do actually turn out. Sometimes those demonstrations are overhyped. And my sense is this will be a very calm morning tomorrow.

ZAHN: Oh, such a skeptic from your prosecutorial days, Jeffrey Toobin.

TOOBIN: No, not really.

ZAHN: Good luck in the courtroom tomorrow we'll look forward to your reports.

Brian Stoller, thank you for you insight as well. Appreciate both of you joining us tonight.

And we thank you all for being with us tonight. "LARRY KING LIVE" is next. We will be back same time, same place tomorrow night. We hope you'll join us then. Until then have a good night.


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