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PAULA ZAHN NOW

President Bush Set to Begin Ad Blitz; Martha Stewart Case Heads to Jury

Aired March 3, 2004 - 20:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

PAULA ZAHN, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening. Welcome. I'm Paula Zahn. Thanks for joining us tonight.
The world, the news, the names, the faces, and where we go from here on this Wednesday, March 3, 2004.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN (voice-over): "In Focus" tonight, this man made a career out of defending the Catholic Church from those who say they were abused, while he hid his own dark secret. Why? I'll ask him in an exclusive interview.

The race for the White House gets a jump-start.

SEN. JOHN KERRY (D-MA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Bring it on!

ZAHN: The president is running ads. John Kerry is choosing a running mate. We'll have the inside look.

And booze and the boardroom. A new study shows a very surprising picture of the hard-drinking executive. Who is it? We'll show you.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: All that ahead tonight. Plus, I'll take you to the front lines of the gay marriage battle, the latest communities to allow same-sex marriage. And the report about Barry Bonds and steroids. I'll look at baseball's growing steroid scandal.

First, though, here's what you need to know right now.

The jury has the case in the Martha Stewart trial. The judge spent just about an hour and 40 minutes reading instructions to the jurors before letting them get to work.

Senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin joins us now. Good to see you, Jeffrey.

JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN SR. LEGAL ANALYST: It's all in the jury's hands now.

ZAHN: Well, let's try to read the tea leaves here.

(CROSSTALK)

ZAHN: They asked for some very specific lists of documents. Does that mean much to you at this stage in the deliberations?

TOOBIN: First, the thing they did was, the judge gave them the case right before lunch and said, sorry, the alternates have to go now. The jury came back right away and said, no, no, we want to have one lunch all together, the whole alternates and the regular jurors, sort of a bonding experience.

It suggests to me that this is a jury that's going to want to avoid a hung jury. They've got team spirit now. We'll see how long it lasts.

What can you tell us about the length of the judgment -- the judge's instructions and what that should indicate? That seems like a long period of time to me.

TOOBIN: It's a long time to sit there and listen. When I was a prosecutor, I always hated listening to it. They're very complicated, these jury instructions. It's not all that unusual, but it's a lot to digest, the elements of each crime against each defendant. It means that this jury has a lot of work to do. And I don't think they're going to do it quickly.

And these notes that the jurors sent later in the afternoon, they asked for a lot of evidence. They asked for Douglas Faneuil's testimony. They asked for the agent's testimony. They asked for charts, exhibits. This is a jury that wants to proceed methodically. They have got a long way to go.

ZAHN: And isn't that the kind of jury that the prosecution wants?

(CROSSTALK)

ZAHN: This has got to be a little encouraging. No?

TOOBIN: Lawyers always talk about good notes for the defense or good notes for the prosecution. These were, I think, good notes for the prosecution, because they are not doing what Robert Morvillo said, which was say, this case is ridiculous, throw it out, not worthy of your belief.

They're proceeding meticulously. They're going through the evidence. Now, I don't want to overstate how good the news is for the prosecution, but clearly these notes are better for the prosecution than they are for the defense.

ZAHN: When do you think we'll see a verdict?

TOOBIN: There's a rule of thumb that says for each week of trial, one day of deliberation. So this is a five-week trial, maybe five days of deliberation. That rule is always true, except for when it's not.

ZAHN: Looks like you might be working this weekend, Jeffrey.

(LAUGHTER) TOOBIN: No, no, the judge said no deliberations over the weekend.

ZAHN: All right, thanks, Jeffrey.

TOOBIN: So Monday or Tuesday.

ZAHN: Appreciate it.

"In Focus" tonight, of all the stories of sexual abuse within the Catholic Church that continue to make headlines, the one you're about to hear stands out. Robert Scamardo, a 44-year-old attorney, claims he abused by a priest when he was a teenager and abused again by a lay minister after he reported the initial abuse.

Scamardo says he kept his bitter experience bottled up for years. But here's where the story seems almost incredible. Scamardo spent more than five years defending the Catholic Church against those who claim they were also sexual abuse victims.

In an exclusive interview, I asked him how he lived with the secret for 27 years.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ROBERT SCAMARDO, FORMER DIOCESE ATTORNEY: It is not easily explained. But the phenomenon is, a survivor, myself, disassociates and denies the feelings, separates the feelings from the actual experience.

And so, therefore, I was able to not have a conscious awareness of my own experience of being sexually assaulted as a child.

ZAHN: At what point did you break?

SCAMARDO: There was several events, one of which was an encounter with a female victim, who, in telling her story and sobbing deeply, told me, you just can't understand. And, in fact, my heart was breaking for her in that moment, because I understood exactly what she was experiencing and yet could not express to her my own pain.

ZAHN: Robert, you say you were abused when you were 15 years old by a priest. What happened?

SCAMARDO: I was elected as the president of the Catholic Youth Organization at 15. And the director, the priest, the director of the youth ministry for Central Texas in the Diocese of Austin, invited me to go with him to a conference in San Antonio and told me that he would make the hotel arrangements.

And I remember being surprised when I walked into the hotel room and there was only one bed. But, as an innocent child, I did not think I was in any danger. And, in fact, I was in great danger, because I was awakened during the night with him sexually assaulting me.

ZAHN: Did you tell anybody about what had happened to you?

SCAMARDO: For several months, I did not. And yet there was a sense that this was wrong and that what this priest had done needed to be reported.

But because of the shame and the fear, I didn't know who to tell, didn't know who to trust. And I turned to a lay youth minister who was working at a parish in Austin and confided in him. And he also betrayed my trust and sexually assaulted me. The phenomenon was then that I could not and chose not to tell anyone else about this dark secret because I feared that I might be sexually assaulted again.

ZAHN: But, by that point, I would have thought that you would have been completely turned off by the Catholic Church. Yet you went on to become a lawyer and represent that very Catholic Church that today is at the root of your problem. How did you do that?

SCAMARDO: Well, again, I think that what's important for your listeners to understand is that there's a complete disassociation of the feelings of shame and fear from the experience of having been abused.

So when you understand that disassociation, then it's easier to understand that I was able to function in that manner, because I was not conscious of the feelings.

ZAHN: Do you have a sense of guilt about those victims you went up against in your defense of the Catholic Church?

SCAMARDO: Oh, absolutely, absolutely. I have a tremendous amount of guilt about the men and women who were victims and who came forward during the time that I represented the church.

There is a part of me that -- my heart breaks for them, that I wish I could be able to turn back the clock and have treated them differently. I was devastated last year to learn that one of those victims had, in fact, committed suicide, a victim who I never doubted his story. I knew he was telling the truth. I knew he was being honest about what had happened to him.

And yet, we continued, I continued to treat him like other victims who had come forward and filed lawsuits, defending the church with the same tactics and attempting to minimize and limit what we might be able to do for him.

ZAHN: Well, Robert Scamardo, we really appreciate your sharing your very personal story with us tonight.

SCAMARDO: Thank you for having me on, Paula.

ZAHN: Our pleasure. Thank you.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: We asked for response from the church. Bishop Gregory Aymond of the Diocese of Austin gave us this statement about the priest who allegedly abused Robert Scamardo: "Once again, I apologize if Robert Scamardo suffered sexual abuse through the church. When he came forward, we paid for counseling for him and his family, including three months of residential treatment. I have notified the police of the abuse. Realizing that money cannot heal, we continue to pray for him and his family daily. If there are other victims, I ask them to come forward so that they can receive care and support."

Both the priest and lay minister accused by Robert Scamardo have not returned our calls. They are no longer with the church.

The gay marriage revolt is spreading. The biggest county in Oregon joins in and more mayors say OK to same-sex marriage. I'll update the state of the gay union.

And the Kerry campaign takes a victory lap after Super Tuesday, but the White House is already launching campaign ads. Who are the people behind Kerry and how well are they prepared for the long march to November?

And drowning their sorrow or drowning their success? A new study says female executives, but not men, are more likely to become problem drinkers. We'll take a look at why.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JAY LENO")

JAY LENO, HOST: Would you have any trouble, problem if they changed the law?

GOV. ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER (R), CALIFORNIA: No, I would have no problem. And let the court decide, let the people decide.

LENO: Yes.

SCHWARZENEGGER: The people have voted just in the last election on Proposition 22. They voted clearly that a marriage is only between a man and a woman and that's the law. So we have to abide by the law. If the people change their minds and they want to overrule that, that's fine with me.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ZAHN: California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger softening up a little on the gay marriage debate in an appearance with Jay Leno this week.

And today, more communities are taking the matter into their own hands. Portland, Oregon, is now handing out marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples. And the mayor of Nyack, New York, also says he plans to perform marriage ceremonies for gay couples.

Joining us now from the front lines are Multnomah County Commissioner Serena Cruz, and Nyack, New York, Mayor John Shields, who himself is gay.

Welcome to both of you.

(CROSSTALK)

ZAHN: Commissioner, I'm going to start with you this evening.

The governor of your state has basically said that he doesn't believe that present state laws permit gay marriage, but he's not going to stop you just yet. You have come to the conclusion that it is legal. How?

SERENA CRUZ, MULTNOMAH COUNTY, OREGON, COMMISSIONER: Well, I heard the governor speak this morning as -- or this afternoon -- as well. And he only spoke about the statutes.

And what we're relying on is the Oregon Constitution. We believe that the Oregon Constitution says very clearly that we can't give a benefit to one group of people that we won't give to another and that that means that -- and based on another decision that was handed down by an appeals court, we've got no choice but to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

ZAHN: Mayor Shields, in the state of New York, you now have the attorney general saying that same-sex marriages are not permitted by state statute. Do you still plan to go ahead and marry couples in New York?

JOHN SHIELDS, MAYOR OF NYACK, NEW YORK: I plan to use a slightly different strategy because of this statement.

He also said that this was a confusing issue that needed to go toward the courts. So, in the village of Nyack, I'm encouraging a group of people to meet with me tomorrow and to go to our town to the city clerk and demand that we get marriage licenses. If those licenses are denied, we'll sue Orangetown and compel the government to give what is our right, a marriage license.

ZAHN: All right, so when this happens tomorrow, then, are you saying you're in a position that you could actually perform the marriage ceremonies at that point?

SHIELDS: Well, if we get the licenses, we will perform the ceremony. If we don't get the licenses, then we're going to bring a class action suit against the town of Orangetown.

The reason we're doing this is that I feel it's extremely important if we want to legalize same-sex unions that this goes before the courts of the state of New York. And I have attorneys working on this. Norman Seagal (ph) is the lead attorney on this case and our local attorney Walter Sebastian (ph) is working pro bono on this case also.

ZAHN: And, Commissioner Cruz, you have just heard some of the legal challenges ahead for the mayor of Nyack, New York. You claim your situation is a little bit different from what's going on in New Paltz and Nyack.

CRUZ: Yes, things are a little bit different out here in Oregon.

First of all, we don't have a DOMA, a Defense of Marriage Act. And, again, we have a constitution and laws that tell local officials they have to enforce the constitution if they believe that the statute violates it. And so that's simply what my colleagues and I are doing today.

ZAHN: And, Mr. Mayor, in spite of all the legal challenges you said you're willing to face here, you know that the mayor of New Paltz, New York, pleaded not guilty today to 19 misdemeanor counts of solemnizing a marriage without a license. Are you willing to put yourself at that same jeopardy?

(CROSSTALK)

SHIELDS: At this point, as I said, I'm going to a different route.

Now, what he's doing is -- and I admire him for it -- he's going to put himself in criminal jeopardy. What I'm saying is, I want to take a proactive stance and I want to sue the government. And I want to sue government as a class-action suit because they're not giving us our equal rights. And I believe that the constitution will uphold this. I think that the Department of Health is in violation of the constitution. And that's why I want to bring it to the court system.

ZAHN: Commissioner Serena Cruz.

SHIELDS: And this is the best way to do it.

ZAHN: And Mayor John Shields, thank you for both of your perspectives tonight.

SHIELDS: Thank you so much.

CRUZ: Thank you.

ZAHN: What's going to happen to baseball's record books if the game's biggest sluggers turn out to be steroid users? We're going to look at the growing scandal and the cone of silence surrounding the players.

And, formerly, the CEO of one of the largest companies in the world tonight charged with one of the largest accounting frauds ever, the downsizing of WorldCom's Bernie Ebbers.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: Major League Baseball is facing a spring training nightmare. Its top home run hitter, Barry Bonds, has been named as a steroid user in a "San Francisco Chronicle" report. We're going to get into what that means for the game and all those home run records in just a moment.

First, though, "In Plain English," Martin Savidge reports on the dangers of steroid use.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Former baseball star Ken Caminiti once claimed 50 percent of Major Leaguers took steroids. Steve Courson says steroids ended his pro football career, not because he used them, but because he talked about them.

STEVE COURSON, FORMER NFL PLAYER: Because of what was I said publicly about steroid use in the league, there's no question in my mind.

SAVIDGE: Courson was released not long after confessing to using steroids in a 1985 "Sports Illustrated" interview.

LYLE ALZADO, FORMER NFL PLAYER: If I can save one little kid.

SAVIDGE: Many people associate the death of football player Lyle Alzado at age 43 with steroids, equating the drug to liquid death. But many experts say steroids had little to do with his fatal disease.

Short-term medical studies have shown steroids add to the risk of heart disease, liver and kidney damage and reduced blood circulation, but the long-term effects are virtually unknown.

DR. CHARLES YESALIS, PENN STATE UNIVERSITY: We've done thousands of such studies for tobacco, alcohol, cocaine, marijuana and heroin. We have yet to do one for anabolic steroids.

SAVIDGE: In addition to fame and money, Courson says he believes steroids helped him get something else, an enlarged heart. He believes, instead of being villains, athletes are victims.

COURSON: The bottom line is, what are we doing? We're performing for the public. And what does the public want to see? They want to see better performances.

SAVIDGE: Medical experts agree steroids can make athletes bigger and stronger. Courson and many health provisional professionals say they're a health concern and the byproduct of a multibillion-dollar sports industry that says one thing to the public while sending another message to the players.

YESALIS: Do whatever you need to do to win, but keep your mouth shut about it.

SAVIDGE: Martin Savidge, CNN, Atlanta.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: So how damaging will the steroid scandal be for baseball and what effect will it have on the record books?

Let's see how attorney and sports analyst Rob Becker looks at all it.

Welcome.

ROB BECKER, ATTORNEY/SPORTS ANALYST: It's good to be here.

ZAHN: So, for starters tonight, what is the impact on all these records?

BECKER: Well, they're all tainted. The past records, you'll never be able to prove that the players were not on these steroids or human growth hormone. And the problem is, if you look at a guy like Barry Bonds, the peak of his career, the 73 home run record, came in his late 30s. You look at almost any other offensive player, their peaks come in the late 20s. You have to wonder why that happened.

(CROSSTALK)

ZAHN: Is there any other explanation for it?

BECKER: Not that I can think of for a guy like that. He says, oh, he works out a lot. I don't believe that.

Then there's a guy like Marvin Benard, who, in the period in question, started to hit home runs eight times the frequency as he did before. So they can't clean up the past. They have got to concentrate on the future. How do they do that? You get the union to engage in a much stronger testing program with random testing that everyone knows is taking place. That way, fans will start to believe in the system and players will stop using, because then they'll get caught.

ZAHN: So, basically, you're saying that the testing in place now is a joke?

BECKER: Well, it has been a joke.

It will get a little better in the coming year. The previous year was survey testing, where, even if you got caught, nothing would happen. You were anonymous. This year, you get caught, there will start to be ramifications.

But they have got to make it more random and frequent so that, really, a player can say to himself, you know what? I can't take it any time, because any time I take it, they might catch me and I could be in big trouble.

ZAHN: You were talking earlier, if you put this on the graph, maybe you could see how someone's performance spurts at a certain period of time.

BECKER: Right.

ZAHN: Are there any more obvious signs that someone might be on steroids?

BECKER: Well, you can argue about the way Barry Bonds' ear has become embedded in the side of his head. Some people would say that that might be evidence that he used human growth hormone. That's one kind of thing.

But other than that, you have got to get journalistic or court evidence. We had "The San Francisco Chronicle" saying that they learned that the government was told that Bonds and five other players were using steroids or human growth hormone. None will us are going to be there. I don't train with Barry. You're never going to train with Gary Sheffield. So we can't have eyewitness testimony of our own.

ZAHN: Do we have any idea, statistically, what percentage of players might be using steroids?

(CROSSTALK)

ZAHN: Because I've seen the "Sports Illustrated." It went from 5 percent up to a much bigger number than that.

BECKER: Well, I don't think it's going to get above a third. It's definitely a minority. I think you have to look at it as a minority, but a serious minority, at least in the past. Maybe that can change.

ZAHN: You haven't seen many current players come out and comment on this.

BECKER: Just recently, there's starting to be a change in that now.

Turk Wendell, a pitcher for the Rockies, he said Bonds was using steroids. Bonds said, well, why don't you take that to my face, although Bonds didn't say, I'll sue you for slander. And there's been other players like Denny Neagle, who has come out and said we have really got to start doing something about this, John Smoltz. There's one ex-player, Andy Van Slyke, who was quite definite and said, oh, there's no question Bonds used steroids, because why? Because the peak of his career came in the late 30s.

ZAHN: Well, there are some people that get better as they near the late 30s, right, but not athletes? Is that basically what you're saying?

BECKER: Maybe we can all get better in our late 30s.

ZAHN: Soon to celebrate his 39th birthday. Rob Becker, thanks so much.

The media war begins. The Bush campaign launches its first ad. So does an anti-Bush group, as the dollars begin to fly in the campaign for president. Also, the L.A. coroner's office finds there's cold cash in souvenirs. We're going to show you a shop where you can find a gift for just about any body. Oh, sorry.

And tomorrow, you'll meet a university student who writes a sex column and says nothing is off limits, except her sources.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) ZAHN: Time for some of the headlines you need to know right now.

Haiti's prime minister has declared a state of emergency, although rebels in the country are planning to lay down their arms. Their leader says they can stand aside now that foreign troops have arrived. That's an about-face from yesterday, when Philippe threatened to arrest the prime minister and put him on trial for mass murder.

Michael Eisner is struggling to remain leader of the club. Today, 43 percent of Walt Disney shareholders voted to oppose Eisner's reelection to Disney's board. Although the no-confidence vote was larger than expected, it does not mean Eisner will be replaced.

And the people of Killington, Vermont, are also having a problem with their leadership, their state's leadership, and now they want out.

Dan Lothian has their story.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DAN LOTHIAN, CNN BOSTON BUREAU CHIEF (voice-over): It's a picture-perfect winter paradise, the ski resort town of Killington, Vermont. But behind this beauty, there's growing unrest over property tax.

HOWARD ZACK, VERMONT RESIDENT: It really comes down to no taxation without representation.

LOTHIAN: Taking extreme measures, a majority of this town has now voted to secede from Vermont. They want to be part of neighboring New Hampshire, 25 miles away, hoping for lower taxes and more say in how their money is spent. But not everyone wants a change of address.

JUDY THOMAS, VERMONT RESIDENT: I was born and raised a Vermonter and I hope to always be.

LOTHIAN: The battle began seven years ago, when the town, along with other communities considered wealthy properties, were tapped for taxes to help finance education across the state.

ZACK: Stand up and do what is right.

LOTHIAN: Frustration and $20,000 spent on studying options put residents on the road to New Hampshire. But some say, not so fast.

ROBERT CHERNIN, VERMONT RESIDENT: I think we just should drop this, adopt a modern charter and look inward.

LOTHIAN: In the 1700s, Killington was chartered in New Hampshire. Now it's up to lawmakers in both states to decide whether to give the green light.

Dan Lothian, CNN, Boston.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: The former head of Worldcom, Bernie Ebbers, surrendered to the FBI today. He pleaded not guilty to charges that he helped organize an $11 billion accounting fraud, the biggest in U.S. history. If convicted, he could face up to 25 years in prison.

That would be quite a change from the free spending life style he apparently lived as Worldcom CEO. And "Fortune" magazine's Andy Serwer joins us now. It's good to see you, Andy. Welcome back.

ANDY SERWER, "FORTUNE": Thank you.

ZAHN: Can he beat this rap?

SERWER: I really don't think so. The government certainly took its time on this case, didn't they Paula. It's been quite a while. They got Scott Sullivan, the chief financial officer of Worldcom to flip to testify. He's going to be going up against his boss here.

And reading into the 31-count indictment today, there seems like there's a lot of evidence where Sullivan and Ebbers conspired together to defraud investors.

ZAHN: Whether they conspired together or not, describe to all of us out there tonight how you can do an $11 billion scheme and not have anybody catch on earlier.

SERWER: Well, you know, it starts slowly and then gets fast -- gets worse very quickly. And basically what was going on here, they talked about this in the indictment, it's called closing the gap. There would be a little bit of a shortfall. They promised investors, say, they'd make $100 million in the quarter. They'd only make 90. They'd sort of fudge some numbers to make up the additional 10.

Next quarter, they'd be 10 million in the hole, plus they'd have to make an additional 15 to now they needed 25. The quarter after that, they need more money, and so on and so on. And all of a sudden, it added up to a tremendous amount of money, didn't it?

ZAHN: Let's go on to talk about what Mr. Ebbers apparently spent. A multimillion dollar plantation in Louisiana, a $68 million ranch in British Columbia. Two yachts worth more than $20 million, all allegedly the bought at the expense of Worldcom and its stock holders.

SERWER: Yes. Well, this is a guy who allegedly, or apparently had a billion dollar fortune at one point. But a lot of that actually came from Worldcom shareholders. And I'll tell you why. Because he borrowed hundreds of millions of dollars from Worldcom and invested in real estate, as you said, and other things for himself. At this point, it is extremely unlikely that's ever going to get paid back.

ZAHN: In spite what was you're saying tonight, though, Andy, a lot of us are cynical. You see Martha Stewart allegedly transferring private expenses and construing them as business expenses. Dennis Kozlowski's, an enormous tapping of his company's coffers. Are we going to see an to end this kind of behavior or not?

SERWER: I think we are. You've kind of got a couple things going on here. First of all, there's illegal activity. And the feds have been working hard. Take a look around, almost all the bad guys have been charged now. We see trials all over the place. Adelphia, Tyco, Martha Stewart, Enron, now Worldcom. That's number one.

And number two, also, I think Americans are really getting fed up simply with the excesses. You look at Dick Grasso and you look at even Jack Welsh. No one said these guys did anything wrong. They just got a lot of money in the case of Dick Grasso and a lot of perks in the case of Jack Welch. I think popular opinion now is swinging the other way, we're really scrutinizing those kinds of things and I don't think CEOs can really get away with that anymore.

ZAHN: Just the Specter of sitting in the courtroom might stop some of them from behaving that way.

SERWER: Absolutely.

ZAHN: Andy Serwer, always good to see you. Thank you.

SERWER: Thank you.

ZAHN: And next, we'll turn to presidential politics. John Edwards out of the race for president. Now come the Veep Stakes as John Kerry looks for a running mate.

and A medical study surveys the boardroom and the bar room and who hits the bottle harder. Men or women? The results may surprise you.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: Many women who make it to the top are apparently crawling to the bottle. A startling new study says senior female executives are 3 times as likely to have a drinking problem than women in lower ranking positions. We're sending in the truth squad on this story.

Joining us now is medical correspondent is Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Barbara Corcoran, an executive herself. She is the founder and chair of the Corcoran Group and author of the book "If You Don't Have Big Breasts, Put Ribbons On Your Pigtails" which looks at how she created her own $4 billion business. Welcome to both of you.

You need a book like Barbara.

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: That's quite a title.

ZAHN: Let's talk about the study, done in Great Britain. How does it apply to women in America? Does it transfer?

GUPTA: I think it does. Some of the data has not been published yet, but two things are true: women are drinking more than they ever have and women who are in high executive type positions are drinking more than women in any other position.

ZAHN: Look at the numbers: 14 percent of Senior executive level women reportedly had drinking problems while only 4 percent of low level women reported a problem.

GUPTA: And for the most part, women in this country, in the United States, do not have drinking problems. Only about a third of women say they drink really with any degree of regularity at all, 3 percent of women, a very small percentage, say they have a significant drinking problem.

That's -- they classify that, if you want numbers, two or more drinks per day. So, the numbers are still small, but they jump startlingly high, three to four times as high, in women in senior executive type position.

ZAHN: Now Barbara, this is your world. Have these statistics mirrored what you've seen?

BARBARA CORCORAN, CHAIRWOMAN, CORCORAN GROUP: Of course. You have to appreciate that women who are in senior level positions have enormous pressure on them. They have a pressure to prove themselves, plus stand up for the whole group of women that they represent. They have very little time. They don't take advantage of the things that men in similar positions do, like a day on the golf course or an afternoon at the spa or the health club to decompress. And you have to also appreciate that drinking, after work, is socially acceptable. And so it's a very comfortable thing for women to do, just to decompress.

ZAHN: Now I recognize you don't have a drinking problem.

CORCORAN: Thank you for saying that.

ZAHN: But you do admit at one point, it was not unusual for you before a big presentation or after delivering a presentation...

CORCORAN: I had one chapter in my life where I consistently left the office and jumped from a half hour in a boardroom and then socialize after that, and I was constantly confronted by people who were drinking. So I turned from a one wine please, type lady to a two gin and tonics, please and I really started to assess myself and wonder if I was going down the wrong path.

ZAHN: Indeed, it's a wrong path health wise. There are some huge risks involved.

GUPTA: There are and men and women are different when it comes to drinking. Pound per pound, men usually weigh more than men and women have less water just from a medical standpoint and therefore, alcohol is going to affect them more.

The number that I found most startling, though, when it gets to be a problem, women are 50 to 100 times more likely to actually develop alcohol related accidents, liver problems, suicides. Alcohol in terms of the social aspects of it. As well as the physical aspects. The alcohol goes to the liver much more quickly and causes problems with the liver long-term.

ZAHN: In going back to what you've seen in the work world, I don't want to give people the impression you're a whiner, because you're in control of a $4 billion empire here, but help foam better understand why you feel the pressures are so inherently different for women than men.

Men have to worry about supporting their families, they have to worry about being scrappy and making a hit in their work environment. So why...

CORCORAN: Because women.

ZAHN: ...the uneven playing field here.

CORCORAN: Because at the top of the work ladder, women are still a rarity and women have a lot more prove and they try 110 percent to prove themselves all day long. They don't give themselves slack. And then when they go home, they typically are also responsible for the homefront, the children, the dinner's on the table, the social life. So they frankly are doing two full-time jobs instead of one and that's a vastly different position than a man has.

ZAHN: And then when they're really dumb like I was, because out of a sense of guilt, you give back half of your maternity leave because you don't want to disappear from the job for too long because you worry they're going to replace you. Just a final word of caution to women who might fall into this trap?

GUPTA: Alcohol, again, affects women differently. We talk about risk of breast cancer, higher in women who drink a lot of alcohol. It's going to affect their possibility of having liver disease, more likely. But also, what was interesting, I found, it wasn't so much related to women who are multitaskers. There are women out there who take care of children, have jobs and they're not any more likely to drink than anybody else. But just these senior executive women really need to be careful, because they seem to be a population that is really growing both in Britain and the United States.

ZAHN: I think I need a glass of wine.

CORCORAN: I'll join you.

ZAHN: Thank you, Barbara. Barbara Corcoran, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, appreciate your help tonight.

John Kerry and Ted Kennedy have been on a steady date on the campaign trail so far. Could Kennedy be a liability in the long run?

And you won't believe this gift. The last word in gifts from the Los Angeles coroner. Shop until you drop?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: Don't forget the official nominating commissions, never mind the primaries to come. The race for the White House is on and earlier than ever. John Edwards helped make it happen today by dropping out of the race for the Democratic nomination. The Kerry campaign officially announced it's shopping for a running mate and the Bush campaign is launching its first wave of political ads. Joining us now, "Wall Street Journal" columnist John Fund from Manchester, New Hampshire, Democrat and former governor Jean Shaheen and in Washington tonight, Peter Beinart, editor of "The New Republic." Welcome all.

Governor Shaheen, I'm going to start with you, let the (UNINTELLIGIBLE) begin. How does the senator confront what is going to be coming at him from the Bush campaign, basically, branding him as this Massachusetts liberal, at a time when he's trying to seal up some undecided votes?

JEANNE SHAHEEN (D), FMR GOV., NEW HAMPSHIRE: Well, I think that's the same old tired rhetoric and it's just not going to work. The fact is, John Kerry is talking about moving this country back in the right direction. He's talking about what we need to do to create good jobs for people. To make healthcare more accessible and affordable to make us more secure at home to restore this country's place in the international community. He's talking about what average Americans are concerned about. And I think that's what they're going to be listening to.

ZAHN: All right. But John Fund, if the senator successfully tries to rebut all that do the images of Senator Kennedy and Senator Kerry hugging each other help his case?

JOHN FUND, COLUMNIST, "WALL STREET JOURNAL": The Bush people will look at John Kerry being from Massachusetts and being Michael Dukakis' lieutenant governor and they're going to say he's a taller version of Michael Dukakis, a thinner version of Ted Kennedy and he's only a slightly more conservative version of Barney Frank. Being from Massachusetts is going to be a problem. Massachusetts is different from other states.

ZAHN: Let's come back to Peter for a second. The Kerry campaign announcing that the vice presidential process, search process has begun. What is the one factor you think they should be keying in on for running mate?

PETER BEINART, EDITOR, "THE NEW REPUBLIC": I think they need someone who suggests that they have the experience and the stature to govern the country on national security. I think Dick Cheney, who is a successful pick for George W. Bush, has changed the criteria to some degree. The model of Clinton and Gore, youthful and fresh-faced may not be as valuable this time. You want somebody with national security experience and who reassures people that the Democrats are grown ups and can handle this very dangerous world.

ZAHN: Governor Shaheen, who would be the best choice for John Kerry as you see it?

SHAHEEN: You know, we're just at the start of this process. But I do agree that we do need a leader who can handle the challenges that we face today. And the fact is, we have not seen that kind of leadership from George Bush and his administration. We have lost jobs, we have more people who have -- who are without healthcare. We have a more dangerous world than we did when George Bush took office, and he's not done anything to make us safer.

ZAHN: Are you willing to name names tonight or first choices?

SHAHEEN: Oh come on, we just have the process underway.

ZAHN: Who is it, John Fund, that the Republicans would be most afraid of in a one-two punch?

FUND: For vice president?

ZAHN: Yes.

FUND: I think somebody like Bill Nelson from Florida the senator there who might put that state in play, or Dick Gephardt, who might put Missouri in play. The best a vice presidential candidate can probably do is pick their bring their home state along.

ZAHN: We're going to look at an ad released by the Bush campaign. Let's watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ANNOUNCER: What sees us through tough times? Freedom. Faith. Family. Sacrifice. President Bush, steady leadership in times of change.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ZAHN: 9/11 themes, the war in Iraq. Will that gain the president much traction? Peter?

BEINART: Maybe. What I think is interesting here is two things. First of all, 9/11 will always be at the center. Second of all, I think this is a subtle thing. I think the attempt to inject the anti- gay message into a lot of this. Faith and family, connecting that to 9/11 has resonance of the gay marriage issue. I thought it was quite interesting that John Fund, our guest here, just suggested Barney Frank as a potential comparison for John Kerry. People know Barney Frank is gay. Why else would you bring that up? Interesting Republican talking point. I think you'll see a lot of injection of gay issues into this campaign. That's what you saw right now.

FUND: Faith and family is injecting gay issues into the campaign.

BEINART: There's no logical reason that you would necessarily say faith and family about 9/11 but I think it's an attempt to inject this gay marriage -- why else would you have brought Barney Frank, John?

FUND: I respect you...

BEINART: Barney Frank, John. Why did you bring up Barney Frank. FUND: The three most visible liberal members of Massachusetts are John Kerry, Michael Dukakis who ran as a Democratic candidate before, Ted Kennedy and Barney Frank. Who else...

BEINART: Barney Frank is not very visible at all. Actually, there are a number of Massachusetts members of the delegation who are just as visible as Barney Frank.

SHAHEEN: You know what, you're both wrong. You're arguing about the wrong issues. The fact is, what people in this country care about is whether they're going to have a job tomorrow, whether they're going to have their pension when they retire, whether they're going to be able to afford their healthcare. And this president has done nothing to address those issues.

ZAHN: Let's move on to an ad that Moveon.org started airing today in 14 different states. Here we go.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ANNOUNCER: Two million jobs lost. Jobs going overseas. And now, no overtime pay. When it comes to choosing between corporate values and family values, face it, George Bush is not on our side.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ZAHN: Are you hurt by that ad?

FUND: The Bush administration is going to run dawn of America, we've turned the America. The Moveon people will run despair in America. Everything is going to be in these dark black and white tones as if the country's falling apart. I think the numbers by November both in the economy and on how much progress is being made in Iraq will belie that.

ZAHN: What about that, Governor?

SHAHEEN: Well, unfortunately, that's not the case. I wish it were. We need a leader like John Kerry who has credibility with people and who has a plan to turn this country around and move it in the right direction.

FUND: Governor, unemployment is only 5.6 percent. That's historically vary low and we're in the middle of a recovery, because in the third quarter, we gained 6.1 percent in the economic growth. Is this really mourning -- with an o-u -- in America? I don't think so.

SHAHEEN: Well, the fact is, the profits that we're seeing on Wall Street haven't trickled down to average Americans. While we saw corporate profits increase by over 40 percent, wages and salaries for average workers increased by 1 percent. We've seen more jobs lost under this president than under any president since Herbert Hoover.

We need a president who has a plan to turn this country around. And all we've heard from George Bush is that he's going to make the tax cuts to the wealthiest 1 percent in this country permanent. That is not going to create jobs and that's not what average people need.

ZAHN: All right, trio, we've got to leave there it. Governor Shaheen, John Fund, Peter Beinart, thank you one and all.

SHAHEEN: Thank you.

Let's look at some of the people now behind candidate John Kerry. Some of his closest are blood relatives. Others have already been important advisers to a former president.

Jeanne Meserve takes a look at John Kerry's inner circle.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

JEANNE MESERVE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): After his avalanche of wins on super Tuesday, John Kerry extends to voters and advisers a thank you.

KERRY: To all of those in public life who took risks, joined this campaign early, hung in when it was tough, and stayed with us today...

MESERVE: Among Kerry's closest confidants, his wife Teresa, with whom he talks policy and politics, and his younger brother, Cameron, an attorney. Though Cameron is described as Kerry's closest friend, long-time associates say it's unlikely he'd play a formal role in any Kerry administration.

STEVE GROSSMAN, FORMER DEAN CAMPAIGN CHAIRMAN: Cam is intelligent, he's thoughtful, he's cool under pressure. He is someone that John is immensely comfortable with.

MESERVE: Kerry's cadre of long-time Boston political operatives plot out strategy and tactics with Bob Shrum. The objective, to counter and beat Karl Rove and the White House political machine.

SEN. EDWARD KENNEDY (D), MASSACHUSETTS: John Kerry, let's hear it for him.

MESERVE: Ted Kennedy advises Kerry on some key issues, and his former chief of staff, Mary Beth Cahill, who worked in the Clinton White House, is now Kerry's highly influential campaign manager. Credited with halting Kerry camp infighting, Cahill's presence is felt in every moment of the campaign, says one observer.

According to those who know Kerry, he likes to play devil's advocate, soliciting a wide array of opinions on issues from, among others, players in the Clinton administration. Former Deputy Treasury Secretary Roger Altman has led an economic advisory group, for example. Gene Sperling, Clinton's chief economic adviser, also plays a part. He counseled John Edwards as well as Kerry, as did Sandy Berger, Clinton's national security adviser.

SANDY BERGER, FORMER NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: And the issues might range from Iraq to Pakistan to the Middle East to international trade, whatever they would like to some outside judgment on. MESERVE: Though Kerry is familiar with many of these issues through years on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, he is also consulting with Richard Holbrooke, Clinton's ambassador to the United Nations, and Rand Beers (ph), a former State Department official who advised President Bush on terrorism.

(on camera): Most Kerry advisers say their overriding goal is to elect a Democrat, but some will admit if that ultimately means they can serve a Democrat, let's say in a cabinet role, that would be all right too.

Jeanne Meserve, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: Last call shoppers. What's the best thing about shopping at a store run by the Los Angeles coroner? You can take it with you.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ZAHN: Finally tonight, birthdays, anniversaries, Christmas. If you're stuck for gift ideas for those important occasions, Bruce Burkhardt has found the perfect place to shop for the person who has just about everything.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SALENE LIMON, LOS ANGELES COUNTY CORONER'S OFFICE: This is the gift shop here at the coroner's office.

BRUCE BURKHARDT, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): All right, in case you missed it, let me repeat that for you. This is the gift shop here at the coroner's office.

LIMON: Something else that you have to have in L.A. is a beach towel. And this is our famous beach towel with the chalk outline.

BURKHARDT (on camera): Oh, yeah, that's a must-have.

(voice-over): No advertising, just word of mouth leads shoppers here to what was once a little office. Office in the Los Angeles County coroner's building. They call it Skeletons in the Closet.

(on camera): Gosh. This is like a garment bag?

LIMON: Yeah, we call it our body bag for traveling. It's a suit carrier. Coroner has...

BURKHARDT (voice-over): Only about 10 or 15 people a day make it to the shop. A lot more at Christmastime. That, plus Internet sales at Lacoroner.com brought in almost $200,000 last year. Money that's well spent.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We're going to open up their skull to examine their brain. BURKHARDT: It's kind of shock therapy for people who are at risk of arriving here in another fashion. Drunk drivers get a graphic lecture on autopsies, and then a tour of the business end of the coroner's office. A far cry from the giggles of the gift shop. But that's exactly what pays for this program.

DAVID CAMPBELL, LOS ANGELES COUNTY, CORONER'S OFFICE: The focus is not on the gore, if you will. The focus is that these were people who have died and have come under the coroner's jurisdiction, and some of them are here because they made bad choices.

BURKHARDT: There's a certain film noir mystique to the L.A. coroner's office. In a town obsessed with celebrity, so many have passed through here. Marilyn Monroe, Robert Kennedy, John Belushi and Janis Joplin, and, of course, Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman. It's no wonder that a lot of people want something that says "L.A. coroner" on it.

LIMON: We get a lot of tourists. So people visiting come in. You know, they just want a souvenir and it's like a unique gift that, you know, you can't get anywhere else.

BURKHARDT: Using humor to deflect the grimness of death is not new to this place. It's just here it has a larger purpose. Take these toe tag key chains with a message.

LIMON: Reminding everybody not to drink and drive.

BURKHARDT: An odd juxtaposition, this gift shop and what goes on a couple of floors below. As they once said here in an early catalogue, part of you thinks it's in bad taste. Part of you wants an extra large.

It's also a reminder that we all want to leave something behind, just not our outline.

Bruce Burkhardt, CNN, Los Angeles.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ZAHN: Nice outline, Bruce. Just as we wrap it up tonight, the Associated Press is reporting that the board of directors of the Disney Company has decided to split the jobs of chairman and chief executive and is naming former Senator George Mitchell the new chairman. Michael Eisner remains CEO.

Thanks so much for being with us tonight. That wraps it up for all of us here. "LARRY KING LIVE" is next. We hope you have a real good night and you'll be back with us same time, same place tomorrow night. Until then, have a good night.

TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com

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