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CNN LARRY KING LIVE
Kerry Picks Edwards as Running Mate; Latest Developments in Scott Peterson Murder Trial
Aired July 6, 2004 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOHN KERRY (D-MA), DEMOCRATIC PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I am pleased to announce that with your help, the next vice president of the United States of America will be Senator John Edwards from North Carolina.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, John Kerry makes John Edwards his running mate. We'll get reaction from Dan Quayle, America's 44th vice president under George Herbert Walker Bush; Senator Joe Lieberman, former presidential and vice presidential candidate, who knows what it's like to take Dick Cheney in a debate; Bob Schieffer, host of CBS News' Face the Nation; New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, at one time considered a possible running mate; Republican strategist Ed Rollins; bestselling presidential historian Michael Beschloss; and David Gergen, an adviser to four presidents.
And then, Scott Peterson's murder trial, day 19. As we await Amber Frey's turn on the stand, some gruesome testimony from the man who discovered the remains of Scott and Laci Peterson's unborn son. With all of the latest, CNN's Ted Rowlands in the courtroom; Court TV's Kimberly Guilfoyle Newsom, the former prosecutor; high-profile defense attorney Chris Pixley; and three more observers inside the courtroom today -- Michael Cardoza, leading defense attorney; Chuck Smith, former prosecutor in the country where the trial's taking place; and Richard Cole, veteran court reporter for the Daily News Group. All next, on LARRY KING LIVE.
We're out of time, folks, so good night. Anyway, let's start with -- first, Governor Bill Richardson in Albuquerque.
Were you disappointed?
GOV. BILL RICHARDSON (D), NEW MEXICO: No, I think this is a very good choice. You know, Larry, I never sought this position. I took myself out several times. But I think this is a good choice, because it shows that Senator Kerry is interested in a generational candidate, a positive candidate. John Edwards was not terribly critical in the campaign, a candidate that will appeal to the South, and most importantly, to the Democratic base that right now is really enthused about this pick.
KING: Were you interviewed? RICHARDSON: Yes, I was. I was interviewed by Mr. Johnson and Senator Kerry for a couple hours, but I want to be, and I love my job as, governor of New Mexico. And apart from that, I think it's important that we look at who is going to turn out a Democratic base that wants to be enormously active, who is qualified. The chemistry between Senator Kerry and Senator Edwards is very good.
I think Senator Edwards appeals to a large middle class that independent voters that are largely undecided. And, he has national security experience. He's been on the Intelligence Committee. He's met with many foreign leaders.
This talk -- here's a guy that has had more foreign policy experience than President Clinton when came in, and several other candidates, including President Bush when he was governor or Texas, and now president.
KING: All right, let me -- now we'll move to the others.
Ed Rollins, longtime Republican strategist, as a member of the loyal opposition, how do you view this?
ED ROLLINS, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: Well, I think he's a good choice for Kerry. I mean, obviously, Kerry -- he's young, he's articulate. Kerry's a liberal. This guy has the same kind of voting record. Does he reach out beyond the Democratic base, I'm not sure.
He's certainly been an effective candidate so far, but at the end of the day, I don't see a state that he obviously adds, and it really comes down to electoral votes.
KING: Do you buy the charisma angle?
ROLLINS: He's very charismatic. But the truth of the matter, at the end of the day, people vote for the person at the top, not the second place.
KING: Bob Schieffer, what's your reaction?
BOB SCHIEFFER, CBS NEWS ANCHOR: Oh, I think he's a very attractive candidate. And I think once Senator Kerry decided not to go the kind of one-state strategy, and that is to pick someone who might carry a specific state, for example, Bob Graham in Florida -- I think there's great appeal to John Edwards. He makes a very good speech.
He will be very good in a debate with Vice President Cheney. But I agree with Ed Rollins. I think it's the top of the ticket, the guy at the top, that people vote for.
And, Larry, I think this campaign, there are going to be three issues, Iraq, Iraq and Iraq. I think what happens in Iraq is going to determine who the next president of the United States is going to be.
KING: David Gergen, who has served administrations both Democratic and Republican, what do you make of this choice? DAVID GERGEN, FORMER PRESIDENTIAL ADVISER: Excellent choice for John Kerry. John Edwards brings to this an optimism that many people think that John Kerry lacks. He brings a freshness to the ticket, a freshness to the race, that it so much needs. And I think he brings to all of us a likability, and people kept on questioning -- and the Republicans keep on saying, well, you don't like John Kerry very much. Well, here's a fellow who is likable.
But one other point. I agree that the Vice President doesn't win an election, but what I do think John Edwards can help this ticket on a lot is in the south, on these critical Senate races, where it makes a huge difference whether George Bush wins a place like South Carolina by 10 points or by five points. If you can close that gap in those states to five, six, seven points, Edwards can help save those Southern Democratic seats, and that will make an enormous difference to a Kerry presidency, or indeed to a Bush presidency.
And, Michael Beschloss, the renowned presidential historian, analyst for ABC News, what's your read?
MICHAEL BESCHLOSS, ABC NEWS ANALYST: Well, it all sounds right to me, and I think he was smart not to try to take a state, because the last time that really worked was Lyndon Johnson with Texas and a few Southern states in 1960.
I think in recent times, Larry, the vice presidential pick that has maybe worked the best, most effectively, was 1992, when Bill Clinton did the contrarian thing and picked Al Gore. There was almost no balance there on the superficial aspect of it. They were both Southern, they were both young, they were both Baptist and centrist, but that doubled a message that Clinton wanted to send. And, at the same time, it also made that ticket look a little bit more trustworthy.
Clinton had had two near-death experiences in the spring over Gennifer Flowers and the draft. Here was a vice president with family, a very warm family, family values, and who had served in the military. From that day forward, Clinton always looked better, and almost from that date, Clinton shot up from being third in the race, after Bush the elder and Ross Perot, to being number one.
KING: I emceed or moderated the last presidential debate of the Democrats in February, cosponsored with the "Los Angeles Times" here at the University of Southern California, and that -- or the idea of a Kerry/Edwards ticket came up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As you've listened to the differences between each other tonight, and through these dozen or so earlier debates, have you heard anything that either one has said that would make it impossible for you to run together as a ticket, if it came to that? Do you have any fundamental philosophical ...
KING: Would you run with John Kerry?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That would make it impossible for you to run together, in either order?
SEN. JOHN EDWARDS (D-NC), DEMOCRATIC VICE PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think an Edwards/Kerry ticket would be powerful, and that's the ticket that I think we should have.
KERRY: Wait a minute.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Senator Kerry?
KING: Are you saying now that if you get this nomination, you will ask him to join you?
EDWARDS: He certainly should be considered. He's a very, very, very good ...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And?
KING: And where does Edwards stand in your thinking? You have to be thinking about it. If you say you're not thinking about it, you're kidding me.
KERRY: I want to thank him for the consideration. I appreciate it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: And we'll be right back with more. Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I welcome Senator Edwards on the ticket. The vice president called him early this morning to say, after the announcement was made, to say that he welcomes him to the race, and as do I. And I look forward to a good, spirited contest.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Before we get back to the panel, joining us from Telluride, Colorado is Dan Quayle, the 44th vice president of the United States. Dan knows what it's like -- John Edwards fellow (ph).
What is that moment like, when you get that call?
DAN QUAYLE, FORMER VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Well, it's a call you expect. It's a call you hope for. And when you get the final offer, you sort of salute and say, what do I do next? In my case, it was to show up at the Spanish Plaza on Tuesday the week of the convention. In John Edwards' case, it was to show up in Pittsburgh at Teresa Heinz's home.
KING: What role do you take -- now, we know they have a major disagreement, let's say, on free trade. Does it become Kerry's -- what Kerry thinks is what the vice president thinks?
QUAYLE: Absolutely. It's John Kerry's agenda. A couple of your commentators before said that they vote for the top of the ticket. I certainly believe that is the case. But when there is a disagreement, guess what? The vice president becomes a convert and he may disagree within the inner circle, and he's got the president's ear, but he's out there being a champion and putting those ideas forward that may not be his own and adopting them as if they were his own ideas.
That's the role of the vice president, is to do two roles, basically, Larry. One, to be prepared, and two, to be loyal. And that's about it.
KING: Dan, how do you assess Edwards' strengths and weaknesses?
QUAYLE: Well, I suppose that his strengths are that he comes -- he'll be the youngest of the four candidates. He has a youthful image, even though I believe he's 50. he's about 10, 11 years younger than Kerry, and a few years younger than President Bush.
He's a very good campaigner. I campaigned for his opponent in 1998, and the Republicans in North Carolina said this guy is a very, very good campaigner. So he'll be good out on the stump.
I think the weakness is that this is another liberal Democrat senator that happens to be a trial lawyer. That's not a plus. That will be a negative. But there'll be a lot of hoopla, a lot of buildup, excitement. There'll probably be a little bit of a bump in the Democrat Convention, and then we'll be onto the Republican Convention. On November 2, I think they'll be voting for President Bush or for Senator Kerry.
KING: Do you see this as a very close election, Dan?
QUAYLE: You know, Larry, I actually think this election is going to go very solidly one way or another, and I think it will come for President Bush.
The reason is is because of Iraq. And I believe by that time that we will see progress. We will see that the president made the correct decision in getting rid of Saddam Hussein. We will see that the new government is making some -- or has some success stories. And, therefore, the American people will say, yes, it was worth it, and freedom in Iraq and freedom in the Middle East and the vision of democracy was well worth the sacrifice, and I think it will move that way, and, if it doesn't, President Bush is going to be reelected overwhelmingly.
On the other hand, if it is chaos and anarchy, I think the country could swing decisively the other way. I don't think -- everyone says it's going to be a very close race, but, you know what? Conventional wisdom is normally wrong when it's this far out. So I think that the president should win rather convincingly.
KING: What advice would you give -- just general advice, would you give Senator Edwards about what he faces now.
QUAYLE: Well, first of all, he'll be a cheerleader for John Kerry and John Kerry's agenda. I presume that they'll campaign together for a while and then they'll go their separate ways.
One of the things I presume that he'll do, and I think David Gergen touched on this, I think he will spend some time in the South with those Senate candidates. I don't think that he'll win any of the states for Senator Kerry, but it'll probably make the Republicans pay a little bit more attention to the base than they would -- had hoped for.
But, Larry, the Republicans I talked to around the country today, there's a collective sigh of relief that he didn't pull a rabbit out of the hat and had Senator Hillary Clinton on the ticket. They think that would have been the most potent ticket to run against.
KING: Thanks very much, Dan, always good seeing you. We'll be calling on you a lot in the months ahead. Dan Quayle, former vice president.
QUAYLE: Thanks, Larry.
KING: Governor Richardson, what did you make of this point that it depends on how Iraq goes?
RICHARDSON: I think Bob Schieffer's partially correct. Iraq is a potent foreign policy issue. It'll be the first time that foreign policy, Iraq, is at the top of a presidential agenda. It's usually domestic issues. But I do think issues relating to the economy, jobs going overseas, personal income, per capita, are going to be very strong. And I think this is where Senator Kerry and John Edwards, with their emphasis on health care and education and opportunity and hope -- don't discount the domestic issues.
Again, the last issue, Larry, is one of leadership. Who is going to take us into this next century with positive plans? And I think Senator Kerry and Senator Edwards have a positive agenda of economic growth and national security and education and health care, and that's what the American people are going to want to see -- who wants to talk positively, optimistically, about this country.
KING: Ed, Dan Quayle mentioned trial lawyers. Which, why is that a bad word, since they defend poor people, and they've often been called the court of last resort.
ROLLINS: Well, I think ever since the O.J. Simpson trial ...
KING: But that's not a trial lawyer. That's a criminal lawyer.
ROLLINS: Those are trial lawyers, too. Most trial lawyers ... KING: Yes, but most trial lawyers ...
ROLLINS: Most lawyers today are viewed in a very negative way, and trial lawyers, obviously, have been ones who've gone out and sued on asbestos and cigarettes and a whole variety of things.
KING: But doesn't the public support cigarette suits?
ROLLINS: A lot of people don't, because they see that it's costing malpractice -- it's affecting doctors, it's affecting a whole lot of the health care industry.
I think trial lawyers are very negative impression -- I think that he has tremendous abilities from that, though. But I think the more important thing that no one's talked about is, he's Ralph Nader's choice.
Ralph Nader, when he met several weeks ago with Kerry said this is the guy I want you to pick.
KING: Oh, he did.
ROLLINS: He did. And, obviously, this may have more impact than anything else. If Nader chooses -- at this point in time, he's having difficulties getting on ballots. He may not go ...
ROLLINS: Certainly, that may help him.
KING: Bob Schieffer, do you think with this selection, Nader might jump out?
SCHIEFFER: No. I think Ralph Nader is trying to run for president, and I think if he were going to get out, he would have got out some time ago. If he doesn't get on ballots, that of course is another question.
I'll tell you what I think is the interesting thing about this, Larry, is immediately after this was announced, the Republicans said, well, hey, let's not forget here that John Edwards is really second choice, that the man that John Kerry really wanted was John McCain.
And there is some truth about that, and the Kerry campaign is being rather candid about that. I spoke to Jim Johnson today, who headed up the search effort for Senator Kerry, and I asked him about this, this whole business about McCain. I said, did you really do that?
And he said, well, Senator Kerry talked about this as a concept. He said a national unity ticket, with John McCain possibly as a running mate, but said we only talked about it as a concept, the job was never offered to McCain, and finally that idea was abandoned.
And I said, well, why did you abandon the concept? And he said, well, because Senator McCain was not available. I said, well, what would you have done had he been available? He said, well, that's a hard question. That's hard to say. But he wasn't available.
KING: David Gergen, would that ticket have worked?
GERGEN: The Kerry/McCain ticket?
GERGEN: Absolutely. I really thought it was stupid for the Kerry people and Democrats to put it out that he'd approached him, that they'd had these early conversations. Because I think it did exactly what Bob Schieffer said, it made whoever his next choice was look like a second choice. I thought that was just a clumsy campaign movement on their part.
Having said that, I think he's now able to open a new chapter, a new page. And I'm very struck by what Ed Rollins said about Ralph Nader. I do think that this may come -- it may hold Nader back some. He's having a hard time getting on some of these ballots, but if he softens his voice, he's going to be even less of a force. So I think that's a fascinating part of this.
The only other point I'd add is that Dick Cheney has made the office of the vice presidency one heck of a lot more important than it seemed only four years ago. And, therefore this choice I think is going to be taken more seriously than we ordinarily think, and that it makes more difference whether Edwards turns out to be a candidate than it does in most races, because I think Edwards is going to run straight at Cheney.
KING: I want to ask Michael Beschloss about that, after we talk with Joe Lieberman. As we go to break, President Clinton on the vice presidency.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BILL CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I like Senator Edwards a lot. He's smart, he works hard, he's incredibly articulate. He's on the Intelligence Committee, which I think is a big plus, because, as you know, we're all debating now whether the quality of our intelligence is adequate to meet the challenges of the efforts against terrorism.
So, I think for all kinds of reasons, this is a very good choice, and I think that they'll do well.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KING: What quality does he have that you'd like?
KERRY: I think he's a great communicator. He's a charming guy. I like him very much. He's a good friend of mine.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you saying that's something you don't have?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That quality ...
KERRY: I hadn't thought about what quality he has that I would like, but I do admire him, I respect him, and he's ...
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: That, of course, from that same debate in February, the last Democratic debate before things got settled.
Before we pick up with Michael Beschloss and more of the panel, Senator Joe Lieberman of Washington, D.C. joins us. He knows what it's like to get the call that Edwards got today. What was it like?
SEN. JOSEPH LIEBERMAN (D), CONNECTICUT: Thrilling moment. I remember when I first came out of the house in New Haven, Connecticut, the press was all there. I just blurted out, miracles happen. I had a feeling of tremendous gratitude to Al Gore, to this country, and I'm sure that John Edwards has that same feeling today. Son of a mill worker, he gets to run for the second-highest office in the greatest country in the world. That's not bad.
KING: You are more conservative than this ticket. How ardently will you support it?
LIEBERMAN: I will support it ardently. Politics, life life, comes down to choices. And my choice for a better future and a safer future for our country is John Kerry and John Edwards. No hesitation at all.
KING: Do you agree with previous statements made by Mr. Schieffer and others, and Dan Quayle, that this campaign is Iraq?
LIEBERMAN: Iraq will be a key, and there's an irony there, isn't there, because at the outset of this campaign, everybody thought that the way Democrats would win is on the economy. Now, I think that's flipped around as a result of facts on the ground.
But I think it's going to be more than Iraq. I'm an optimist about Iraq. I was over there last week. I think it's turning in the right direction. And I believe it's going to continue to go in the right direction.
I'm glad that John Kerry and John Edwards are basically taking the same position on Iraq today as George Bush. Differences in the past, but no longer. They want to finish it successfully. I think that's the right position for them to take, and it gives them the opportunity when things go better in Iraq to make the differences between them and George Bush on health care, on education, on environmental protection, on civil rights, civil liberties, on being the mainstream ticket, as opposed to the Bush/Cheney ticket, which is over to the right.
KING: Do you see this as a very close election?
LIEBERMAN: I do. I hope for everyone's sake that it's not as close as the one I participated in in 2000, but I still think you've got to assume that this is -- barring some unexpected events, either here or somewhere else around the world, it's going to be a close election.
KING: Thank you, Joe. We'll be calling on you a lot.
Senator Joe Lieberman.
LIEBERMAN: Great to see you, Larry.
KING: Democrat of Connecticut.
Michael Beschloss, things like trial lawyers, or offering it to McCain. Does that disappear as we get into September/October? Do issues come forward?
BESCHLOSS: I think it probably does. Yes, and you know, one thing I disagree with what at least one of the others said earlier, I think John Kerry was very lucky that the Kerry/McCain ticket never developed. It looked wonderful on paper, but a lot of the Democrats who were for that did not have any idea what John McCain's votes have been on domestic issues. Once they found that out, I think there would have been floor fights. This would have been a very bloody process.
And the other thing is, I think it's a very bad idea to have a vice president who disagrees with the presidential candidate in a big way. Especially, we're living through a very dangerous time, and it's a very bad thing for someone out there to think that by removing a president you can change national policy in a big way by giving the office to the vice president.
KING: Interesting point.
We have a few minutes left. Governor Richardson, how's New Mexico going to go?
RICHARDSON: Right now, it's neck and neck, and this is why I believe that nationally you've got about 45 percent on both sides, with a 10 percent window on undecided voters and others that are up for grabs.
I believe we will win New Mexico. Senator Kerry is strong here. I'm going to campaign hard for him. The Hispanic vote, which is over 43 percent, is key here. We're going to work to turn out the base, and I believe with his message of economic growth, opportunity, national security, his Vietnam record really plays well here, that we will win New Mexico narrowly.
KING: Ed, what states should we look at that Tuesday night?
ROLLINS: Well, obviously, Michigan, Ohio, Illinois -- those are key states. I would say that Midwest is still the ... KING: Is there one key one you're going to look at? Is Ohio a key?
ROLLINS: Ohio's a key to me. If we don't win Ohio, we're not going to win. And I think we will win Ohio in the end.
Florida, obviously, I don't think is going to be as close as it was last time, but still certainly key. If you see Florida going early in the night against us, then we know we're going to have a long night.
KING Lieberman had a lot to do with Gore's success in Florida.
ROLLINS: I think he did, and I think that the president has spent a lot of time there. Reelections are about the incumbent, and the truth of the matter is, if people are looking for an alternative in November, they'll look at the other ticket. If they're not, Bush will win and win easily.
KING: Bob Schieffer, how do you see this, close?
SCHIEFFER: Well, I think it's going to be very close. And I must say, I just almost agreed down the line with what Ed Rollins has just said. I think Ohio is going to be very key, and I think Florida also will be very key. Florida and Ohio are the two that I'd be watching this time.
KING: David Gergen, what are you going to be looking at?
GERGEN: Ohio and Pennsylvania. But there's something else I'd be looking at. I don't agree that this is all about Iraq. I think there are two numbers to watch between now and the election. One's the job number, the job count, and the other's the body count. How many jobs get created between now and November is going to be critical.
If this economy really is softening, as some analysis suggested over the weekend, that could come back to haunt the president. If the body count goes down in Iraq, that will obviously come back to help him. So I think those, to me, are the big barometer going into the election.
KING: And, Michael Beschloss, what are you going to look at?
BESCHLOSS: Well, you know, Larry, in the last 44 years, no northeastern liberal has won for the Democratic party getting the presidency since John Kennedy. I think that's not by accident, because people like Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton grew up in areas that were not liberal, where they had to learn how to talk to people in a way that was not alienating, and talk to people who disagreed with them.
I think that, above all, is what John Edwards brings to this ticket. It's going to make this ticket a lot more competitive in areas that I think John Kerry a week ago was not even thinking of. KING: Thank you all very much. We'll be calling on all of you again. Bob Schieffer, Governor Bill Richardson -- great seeing you again, Ed Rollins, Michael Beschloss and David Gergen.
When we come back, things are getting hot and heavy in Modesto. We'll take it on right after this.
Don't go away -- oh, by the way, John Kerry and his wife Thursday night on LARRY KING LIVE for the full hour in New York. John Kerry and Mrs. Kerry, Thursday night. Tomorrow night, Gene Hackman.
We'll be right back.
KING: Now the Scott Peterson matter. Our panel includes in Redwood City Ted Rowlands, the CNN journalist who's been on this from the get-go.
In New York Kimberly Guilfoyle Newsom, the former prosecutor and Court TV anchor and CNN legal analyst.
In Hartford, Connecticut, defense attorney Chris Pixley.
In Redwood City, Michael Cardoza, local defense attorney and former Alameda County prosecutor who was in the courtroom today.
As was Chuck Smith, the former San Mateo county prosecutor, six years as a homicide prosecutor, now in private practice.
Also there, Richard Cole, covering the Peterson trial for the Daily News Group. Veteran crime and trial reporter in the courtroom today.
We'll start with the courtroom folks first. Ted Rowlands, what happened today?
TED ROWLANDS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, the bulk of today was centered on the recovery of the bodies. First Conner Peterson, Laci and Scott Peterson's unborn son, and then Laci Peterson's remains. The prosecution brought up a number of witnesses to discuss how each one of the sets of remains were found. It was graphic at times. They showed crime scene photographs of both scenes, very graphic photos of the child and of Laci Peterson's remains.
The Rocha family got up and left when this testimony started this morning. They were given fair warning that this was going to happen. They did not want to be in the courtroom for this. They didn't want to endure it. So they left.
The Peterson family did remain. They were emotional at times. Jackie Peterson appeared to be crying a few times when the remains of Conner Peterson were put up on a big screen. And then again when Laci Peterson's remains were shown to the jurors.
Also on Laci Peterson's side there were a couple of relatives that did stay in, and one woman broke down for a time, was very emotional. The prosecution wanted to get across to the jury the importance of where these bodies were located and where they were found and, of course, it goes a long way in their case because Scott Peterson was there the day that he reported his wife missing.
KING: Michael Cardoza, does that make this a good day for the prosecution?
MICHAEL CARDOZA, LEADING AREA DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, I think it did make it an OK day for the prosecution. What I noted early on with Mansfield, he was the first witness to testify, he went through part of Scott Peterson's statement to him. But then Geragos on cross examination took him through every bit of his statement. I mean, every little bit of it. So that's going to obviate Peterson from having to take the stand. In effect he got Peterson's testimony before the jury without Peterson having to be subjected to cross examination through Mansfield.
KING: And Chuck Smith, was that effective for Scott Peterson?
CHUCK SMITH, FMR. SAN MATEO CO. PROSECUTOR: I think so. What was interesting today, it was a real juxtaposition from last week. We ended last week with the testimony about sex, about cheating on his wife, and I think the prosecutor brought it back today because looking at those gruesome photographs today made everybody understand this isn't about sex, this is about a terrible, gruesome murder. That was effective to put on right after Mansfield's testimony in which Scott Peterson again lied about his extramarital affairs.
KING: Richard Cole, what was your read?
RICHARD COLE, REDWOOD CITY DAILY NEWS GROUP: One thing we saw today was I believe a radical change in direction by the prosecution. As Chuck just mentioned, last week was testimony about how Scott met Amber Frey. We all believed, and I think we were correct, that they were leading up to put Amber Frey on the stand.
Suddenly, today we're talking about the discovery of the bodies. It gave me the impression that they decided that the strongest card in their suit is the discovery of the bodies and it would be very difficult to explain the fact that they were found very close to where Scott said he was fishing that day.
But I think it came so swiftly, this change, that the judge and the defense were kind of caught by surprise. At the end of the day the judge ordered the prosecution to give him and the defense a written list of all the witnesses that were going to be coming up for this week. And I strongly suspect that's because this was a surprise to everybody, that we were suddenly talking about bodies today after talking about Amber Frey all last week.
KING: Kimberly, as a former prosecutor what do you make of that?
KIMBERLY GUILFOYLE NEWSOM, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: I think today was a great day for the prosecution. I think they should have started off this case from the beginning with these gripping images of the body of Laci Peterson and of Conner.
And I'll tell you something, this jury is not going to forget it. I saw those photos nine months ago, Larry. They're still with me today. They will be forever. The jury is going to want to find who was responsible for the death of Laci and Conner Peterson and the prosecution is showing them the evidence that it's Scott Peterson seated in that courtroom.
KING: Because of the proximity?
NEWSOM: The proximity. How can you explain it away? You'd have to believe it's a coincidence and there's a great conspiracy against him by a disorganized band of homeless people that also performed a Cesarean section on Laci Peterson and then dumped the baby to be in an area exactly where Scott was. That makes absolutely no sense. And the defense is throwing one theory out after the next, of Hawaiian or Pacific Islanders, of Satanic cults and brown vans, and none of it is going to add up. And the prosecution is going to show one reasonable explanation and back it up with circumstantial evidence.
KING: Chris Pixley, how would you respond to that?
CHRIS PIXLEY, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, the prosecution's case really is kind of collapsing on them. I agree with Richard Cole. This is a real surprise. All along the prosecution has really been plodding along, telling us the story chronologically from start to finish. Now they go from Scott Peterson's introduction to Amber Frey in November to the body of Conner Peterson being found on the shore of the San Francisco Bay in April, five months later.
Maybe they didn't want to talk about all of the fruitless investigation that they did all of those months, all of the wiretaps and the search warrants that were executed in the home which of course didn't turn up anything, no evidence found there at all.
And I think ultimately Kimberly's right. You lead, if you don't have anything else, you lead with the gore. You lead with the blood evidence. It's a well-worn prosecutorial tactic to do that. It's the only thing they have in this case. The problem, Larry, is that they're going to run into a bit of a wall here as well because you don't have a bloody crime scene, you don't actually have a murder weapon, you don't have a cause of death, and in fact...
KING: But it does look funny, doesn't it, Chris?
PIXLEY: I'm sorry?
KING: It does look funny.
PIXLEY: It looks very funny that the bodies would wash up there. But Larry, were it not for the bodies washing up in the Bay there would have been no arrest of Scott Peterson. It's the one piece of evidence that the prosecution needs to come back to often.
It, of course, is something that raises many questions, and one of the biggest problems for the prosecution still on this point is the fact that Scott Peterson's whereabouts on the day of his wife's disappearance were published so widely from December 25 on.
KING: Ted Rowlands, what about Amber Frey? When?
ROWLANDS: Well, you know, initially, as Richard alluded to, we expected that they're working towards that, and we were under the impression that she would start off next week. Now we understand from sources on both sides that it will most likely be a couple weeks off that we see Amber Frey come in here. Whether or not the prosecution has changed directions or if things are going a little bit slower, who knows? But I think it would be a safe bet it's going to be at least a week, most likely two before Amber Frey shows up here in Redwood City.
KING: Michael Cardoza, is this trial going as expected?
CARDOZA: No, it's not going as expected at all. I thought the D.A.s would start, as everybody's saying, with a big bang. I mean, put that strong evidence on, convince the jury he did it, then backfill the case. And when Kimberly was talking about the Bay, you know, the defense is going to dig into that even with the prosecution's expert because the deepest part of that area, Larry, is ten feet deep.
During the low tide you can actually get out of the boat and walk to shore from there. That was the most searched area in the world at the time. How could they possibly have missed the body? You can bet the defense is going to argue with ten feet of water there in depth, why did they miss the body? Meaning someone else dropped the body off after all the publicity started. That's where the defense will go with this.
KING: Chuck Smith, good point?
SMITH: Well, it's not a good point, Larry. It's a silly point. That these band of vagrants that were just homeless people in the park in Modesto who snatched her and her child, held them for a while, and then after they read news reports that the police were searching the bay because that's where Scott Peterson had been fishing, they somehow snuck out to the bay, somehow found themselves access to a boat, and then went out there and dumped the body? That's ludicrous.
I mean, the fact is this: when crimes of opportunity -- homeless people in a park committing a crime -- they're not going to drive the body 90 miles to the bay. It's 90 miles from Modesto to the bay. Only someone who had an interest in those bodies never being found because he had a connection to those bodies committed this crime, and the only person who fits that description is Scott Peterson.
KING: We'll take a break and come back with more on this edition of "LARRY KING LIVE." Gene Hackman tomorrow night, and Senator John Kerry will be with us on Thursday night. And Friday night, more on the Scott Peterson case. Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AMBER FREY, SCOTT PETERSON'S FORMER MISTRESS: I met Scott Peterson November 20th, 2002. I was introduced to him. I was told he was unmarried. Scott told me he was not married.
We did have a romantic relationship. When I discovered he was involved in the disappearance -- or the Laci Peterson disappearance case, I immediately contacted the Modesto Police Department.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Richard Cole, this morning -- before the testimony begins, there's a long in-chambers meeting between the judge and the attorneys apparently involving Detective Al Brocchini. What was that about?
COLE: Well, I'm not sure if it was all about Al Brocchini, but certainly that came up.
It was a very odd situation today. One of the things that happened was Detective Brocchini was there prepared to testify. At one point, he actually sat in the witness stand, and then he moved to a chair where the witnesses sit. And then, they had this in-chambers hearing for an hour, and then they sent him home. Now, we all assumed that he was there to, in effect, say, "Oops, nobody ever mentioned duct tape and that supposed tip we got about Scott Peterson and how he was going to dispose of the body." For some reason, that was put off.
Everything that I understand, the prosecution wants a little more time to deal with that and some of the other issues that were brought up. And I wouldn't be surprised at all if the -- also the issue of the fact that they changed course in midstream here and came up with new witnesses at the last minute was also discussed in that meeting.
KING: Kimberly, what about those who are saying that Mr. Brocchini may be this trial's Mark Fuhrman?
NEWSOM: Well, it's unfortunate right away that people are talking about that. It's such an unfavorable comparison for the prosecution. But keep in mind, he's not the lead detective. They got him on and off the stand. It's done with.
And now they hit hard with this evidence today of the discovery of the bodies, and that's really what's going to stick with the jurors. They're not going to, you know, turn away from compelling evidence in this case because of Detective Brocchini. The facts are going to speak for themselves. I think the jury will be able to move on and move it aside.
KING: Do you, as a prosecutor, see this as good police work so far?
NEWSOM: Well, unfortunately, it's not something I would be pleased with, and I would also focus on other officers involved and what they recovered at the scene and really try and kind of bury the testimony of this particular detective.
But guess what? In argument, I would acknowledge it and say, "Look, you may not feel that he's the best or the most ethical, the most thorough, maybe you feel he had it out for Scott Peterson -- but he didn't conspire to put this whole case against Scott Peterson. He didn't put words in Scott Peterson's mouth. He didn't dump the bodies. He didn't discover the bodies." All of the evidence shows compelling evidence away from Al Brocchini and focuses on the facts of the case.
KING: Chris Pixley -- I know that Michael's upset with what you said, but let's get Chris's reaction first, who also appears upset.
PIXLEY: Yes. Yes, I would completely disagree with -- it does matter. I understand -- Kimberly's right in saying, "Well, I'd try to minimize it and walk away with it." This is the lead detective in the case. You can't...
NEWSOM: No, he's not, Chris. He's not the lead detective. It's -- Grogan is. He's one of the detectives on the case.
PIXLEY: OK. All right. Well, he's become the principal witness right now for the prosecution. We know that he was with the case from the beginning.
We also know that he ran with the case. He was calling in false tips to the Peterson hotline. This is a man who was faxing newspaper articles to Scott Peterson's employer, who's out of the country. There's absolutely no reason for him to be doing something like that other than to hurt Scott Peterson. He was trying to turn his friends against him. He was taking evidence and was not making it part of the police inventory, confiscating it himself.
Now we learn, in an effort to rehabilitate him, that he may have elaborated a bit on a tip that was called in. And the whole point of the prosecution on his last day of testimony presenting that tip was to show, look, the police are professionals. They don't simply run with every piece of evidence that might incriminate Scott Peterson.
Well, if that police officer now testifies in a way that elaborates on a tip and makes it look more like the physical case that we have here, it's just more damning evidence. So, regardless of what you say about Al Brocchini not being important to this case, he's tremendously important. The fact that his testimony collapsed and that the character assassination of Scott Peterson has collapsed...
NEWSOM: Doesn't matter.
PIXLEY: ... is the reason that we've turned to the blood evidence now.
NEWSOM: Scott places himself at the scene. Scott's the one that gives the statement to the police saying that he was fishing on that day. And oh, my goodness, can you believe the misfortune of Scott Peterson? The unluckiest man...
PIXLEY: What scene?
NEWSOM: ... in the world. Both bodies wash up right where he was fishing. That has nothing to do... PIXLEY: The scene of a crime...
NEWSOM: ... with Al Brocchini.
PIXLEY: ... did he kill her at the bay? Did he kill her at the bay, Kimberly? I mean...
NEWSOM: I'm not saying he killed her at the bay. The idea was it a was a suffocation or strangulation and the body was dumped in the bay and not by a band of homeless people.
KING: All right, that's good. Chuck Smith, what's your read on this dispute?
SMITH: You know, what's lost in this whole issue regarding Detective Brocchini is this: The police are not perfect. Defense attorneys such as Mark Geragos, Chris Pixley, Mike Cardoza, they take the actions of these police officers, which were done under remarkable stress, under 24-hour-a-day work which these men and women do. These defense attorneys then have a year to pick over it, to nitpick, to Monday-morning quarterback, you should have done this, you should have done that. Who cares? It really amounts to nothing.
KING: Aren't -- aren't you a defense attorney, though, now?
SMITH: Well, sure I do. And I do this, but I was on the other side, and I know what I speak of when I say the dedication and the hard work that these men and women put into it -- and it has to be seen from that viewpoint, and it has to be understood from that viewpoint.
KING: Michael, would you ruefully...
SMITH: So what if they're not perfect?
KING: Michael, would you ruefully agree with that?
CARDOZA: In part, I would in part agree with that. But going back to what Kimberly said, she would admit they were unethical? My Lord, it's the police. They're supposed to be ethical. They're asking to convict Scott Peterson of first-degree murder and then take his life, and they have license to be unethical? No.
One of the things that went on this morning in Delucchi's chambers, I believe, was the defense making a motion for a mistrial in this case. If not a mistrial, to dismiss this case with prejudice because of the prosecutorial misconduct that's happened time and time again in this case.
KING: Ted Rowlands, have you heard anything in that regard?
ROWLANDS: Just what has been rumored around the courthouse here after court came out. It was a very long in-camera session, and it's assumed that Al Brocchini was the focus of it.
He entered court this morning, seemed ready to testify, sat in his spot, and then, after the in-camera, he was told to get out. And we saw him leaving the courthouse and leaving the area. So something happened, and something happened that had to do with Mr. Brocchini.
KING: We'll take a break, get a few calls in before you leave us.
Gene Hackman tomorrow night. John Kerry and his wife on Thursday. Don't go away.
KING: Let's get in a few calls. Tyler, Texas. Hello.
CALLER: Yes, hello.
CALLER: I would like to know if the jury is given information in the charge that if there's a hung jury that the case can be retried or if the panel thinks that the average juror knows this.
KING: Michael Cardoza, do you know?
CARDOZA: Well, the average juror probably knows that, but they are not told that in a courtroom. If the jury hangs, they're simply dismissed and sent on their way. Then it actually becomes the district attorney's job to decide whether to retry the case. In a case like this, you can bet it will be retried if there's a hung jury.
KING: Detroit, Michigan, hello.
CALLER: Yes. I have a call -- for Chris Pixley.
CALLER: I was wondering, when Laci's mother broke into the Peterson house and took like the crib and everything, why wasn't the diary that she took of Laci's an important piece of evidence?
It was certainly important like in the O.J. case.
CALLER: That has not been brought up at all?
PIXLEY: Well, obviously, right now we know that there were a number of motions that have been filed about this evidence, and you can bet that one of the things the defense is going to point out if they feel that they need to is the fact that this, quote, "Crime scene had not been released to them and had not been secured at the point in time that that break-in occurred."
Now, whether or not ultimately that's going to become an issue in the trial has yet to play out. And we won't really know until we see all of the prosecution's evidence. I suspect at this point, it isn't going to matter, and it isn't going to matter for some of the reasons we've been talking about tonight.
What the case boils down to now, now that the character assassinations have failed, now that the prosecution hasn't been able to prove that Laci Peterson didn't have the energy to walk the dog on the day of her disappearance, of course, she was going to yoga classes a few days in advance. She's buying bags full of groceries and so forth.
What it's going to boil down to is how do you explain that the bodies are at the bay and whether there's enough emotional stock in presenting the blood and gore of the two bodies washing up. I don't think that there's going to be enough there. And I think the prosecution -- or excuse me, the defense is going to be able to present their case without worrying about the break-in and some of these other ancillary facts.
KING: Richard Cole, how does the jury look to you, attentive?
COLE: They're extremely attentive. All but one or two are taking notes. I was looking at them when the pictures were being displayed, and they are extremely gruesome, and I understand why the families averted their eyes, as did Scott Peterson. They were looking very intently. I'm not saying a great deal of emotional reaction out of them. I'm not sure whether that's good for one side or the other. But they do look hard at work. I have thought that from the beginning. This jury is very serious. There's not one person on there that's staring up at the ceiling and fidgeting around. They are watching and listening to everything.
KING: We -- before you leave us, we want to make note of a special day today. Today is the 60th birthday of Michael Cardoza.
CARDOZA: Ooh. That hurts, Larry. Oh, that hurts.
KING: Now, you're a kid.
CARDOZA: I think -- thank you. Ooh, that hurts, though. Thank you.
KING: On behalf of the entire staff of CNN and Ted Rowlands and Kimberly Guilfoyle Newsom -- well, maybe not Kimberly.
NEWSOM: No, he's a former prosecutor.
KING: Chris Pixley, Chuck Smith, Richard Cole, and everybody, a very happy birthday to you, Michael. You do yeoman-like work for us, and we really appreciate it.
CARDOZA: Thank you.
KING: We'd all sing it, but let's not test ourselves that much. Thank you very much, Ted Rowlands, Kimberly Guilfoyle Newsom, Chris Pixley, Michael Cardoza, Chuck Smith, and Richard Cole. We've got quite a couple of days coming up with programming and I'll tell you all about it right after these words.
KING: Tomorrow night, our special guest will be Gene Hackman. Looked forward to this for a long, long time.
Thursday night, Senator and Mrs. John Kerry will be our special guests. You may have heard of them, they made the news today. Senator John Kerry and his wife will be aboard on Thursday night. And then more on the Peterson -- this fascinating Peterson trial on Friday night.
Speaking of fascinating, we have some fascinating people at CNN and one of them is about to take over our airways. He will control the next hour in deft, inimitable style. He's Mr. B, he's Aaron Brown. It's time for "NEWSNIGHT." I humbly turn it over to you. Go, go.
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