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AMERICAN MORNING

'What's In It For Me?': Bush, Homeland Security; 'New You Revolution'

Aired January 19, 2005 - 07:30   ET

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


BILL HEMMER, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, everybody. It's 7:30 here in New York.
In a moment, some perspective on the war against terror from a town still deep in pain from the attacks of 9/11. Kelly Wallace talks to Middletown, New Jersey's police chief in her series on the issues facing America as we head into a second term for President Bush. It's called, "What's In It For Me?" Part three comes your way in a couple minutes here.

SOLEDAD O'BRIEN, CNN ANCHOR: Also this morning, Sanjay is back. He's on a mission to help five people get their acts together this year. This morning, we're going to meet a grandma. She's trying to get her diet in order. She eats to cope with some serious stress in her life. We're going to hear her story in just a few moments.

HEMMER: All right, good deal.

Heidi Collins is back with us again with the headlines.

Good morning.

HEIDI COLLINS, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, guys. And good morning to you once again, everybody.

"Now in the News." this morning.

A series of explosions ripping through Baghdad. Iraqi police say a suicide car bomb went off near the Australian embassy this morning. Three other bombings followed, one near a police headquarters. At least 25 people were killed in today's attacks. Dozens others are injured. Iraq remains under a state of emergency, in fact, ahead of the January 30 elections.

Secretary of State nominee Condoleezza Rice faces more questions this morning. Yesterday, some Democrats on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee grilled Rice on her support for the war in Iraq during more than nine hours of questioning. The panel is set to convene in an hour and a half. Rice is expected to be confirmed later this week.

In California, a former police officer fired for punching a black teenager has been awarded more than $1.5 million in a reverse- discrimination lawsuit. Amateur video shows then officer Jeremy Morse in July of 2002 hitting the teen and slamming him onto a patrol car south of Los Angeles. You remember this. Yesterday, a jury decided Morse's firing was inappropriate. The other officer was awarded $810,000 for his suspension from duty.

And it's a black tie and boots event in Washington tonight. President Bush will attend three candlelight dinners and a ball on the eve of his second inauguration. The president paid tribute yesterday to U.S. forces. Tonight, a celebration of freedom, complete with musical performances and fireworks is scheduled for dusk outside the White House.

Stay with CNN for all of your inauguration coverage. Judy Woodruff and Wolf Blitzer will have more with their special, "George W. Bush: The Road Ahead." That's coming your way at 3:30 p.m. Eastern -- Soledad.

O'BRIEN: All right, we'll be spending some time there ourselves tomorrow.

COLLINS: Yes, you will. Bundle up.

O'BRIEN: Yes, we will. All right, Heidi, thanks.

Let's go back to Bill.

HEMMER: We're going to have to being outside, right, Soledad?

O'BRIEN: Absolutely.

HEMMER: Now on the eve of the inauguration, our special series, "What's In It For Me," looks at another second-term issue of concern to average Americans. This morning, it's homeland security. And Kelly Wallace is back with us with part three.

Good morning.

KELLY WALLACE, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Bill.

What we wanted to do is talk to people on the front lines when it comes to defending America and find out what they want President Bush to do over the next four years. So, we traveled to Middletown, New Jersey, and this is a place that lost more people in the World Trade Center attacks than any other suburb in the New York area.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

CHIEF JOHN POLLINGER, MIDDLETON, N.J. POLICE CHIEF: Is she coming in for a restraining order?

WALLACE (voice over): Spend time with Middletown's police chief, and you'll see John Pollinger is a no-nonsense kind of guy. He says he lost any tolerance for whining right after the September 11 attacks.

POLLINGER: If those people could somehow reach out from the grave and shake us and say, you don't have any complaints, you don't have problems, the world would be a better place.

WALLACE: The emotions still so raw in the community hardest hit by what happened just across the river three and a half years ago.

(on camera): Do you remember that day like it was yesterday?

POLLINGER: Oh, yes. And I along with everybody else.

WALLACE (voice over): At least once a month, Pollinger says he visits this memorial with tributes to the 37 residents of Middletown, New Jersey, who died in the attacks.

POLLINGER: And I guess the biggest thing that I faced that day was the sense that I couldn't protect them.

WALLACE: His main wish for the president's second term? Federal officials paying closer attention to local law enforcement.

POLLINGER: And we give you an honest, documented and valid opinion as to why we need what we need. Listen to us.

WALLACE: Because Pollinger says local communities like his are not getting the federal money they need. He blames the federal bureaucracy and special interest politics.

POLLINGER: Instead of whining about it anymore, I just come to realize that I don't think the answer is going to come from the federal government at all.

WALLACE: He says local police chiefs need to learn how to do more with less. For instance, he says when there were fears in 2003 a ferry could be used in a terror attack, he moved officers from the streets to the ferries.

POLLINGER: It could come from a ferry leaving my town. And I thought, 'No, I'm not going to let that happen. It's not going to be in my town.'

WALLACE: Frustrations over resources and a lower tolerance for what he now considers petty complaints are the reasons Pollinger says he'll retire this year after seven years as chief, 28 years in all with the force. But until then...

(on camera): How much do you worry about a terrorist attack happening in a place like Middletown?

POLLINGER: I worry about it every waking moment.

WALLACE (voice over): A worry not likely to ever go away in this community forever linked with September 11.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WALLACE: We want to thank Chief Pollinger for spending so much time with us. You know, he talked, Bill, about frustrations over federal resources. But he said there is one area where he's seeing some improvement, and that is when you're talking about intelligence- sharing between federal and local agencies. HEMMER: It seems like every time we visit a story on this subject matter, you get this tug-of-war. What's the federal responsibility? What's the local responsibility? Where is the tug- of-war going to come out when it comes to allocating money? I'm curious to know, what are the growing pains this country is experiencing right now as we all continue to learn about keeping things safe?

WALLACE: And he was pretty candid about that, Bill. He said, hey, No. 1, look, the Department of Homeland Security is just learning. It's fairly new. There's not a lot of money to go around.

But he also said there's sort of this me-too syndrome. Every local community wants money. No community is going to say, OK, you give it to Middletown, New Jersey, because it needs it more than need it.

He also talked about the politics of it -- senators, congress men and women who are trying to protect their communities. And he said this politics of money is still going on until everybody steps back and really looks at the need, which communities need it more.

HEMMER: And a critical issue, too, as you point out.

WALLACE: Absolutely.

HEMMER: Thank you Kelly. Tomorrow, part four, right?

WALLACE: Tomorrow the work continues.

HEMMER: OK. Kelly is going to be with us down in D.C. as her special series continues, "What's In It For Me," will focus on Social Security then down in D.C. And stay tuned later tonight, a "CNN Security Watch" special, "Defending America." It starts at 7:00 Eastern, 4:00 on the West Coast -- Soledad.

O'BRIEN: All right.

(WEATHER REPORT)

O'BRIEN: It's time to take a look at the "Question of the Day."

JACK CAFFERTY, CNN ANCHOR: Watching those hearings yesterday, Senator Barbara Boxer of California was at the center of a rather ugly exchange during the confirmation hearings for Dr. Condoleezza Rice. She accused Rice of lying, saying -- "Your loyalty to the mission overwhelmed your respect for the truth." That's an erudite way of saying "you lied."

In her 12-minute attack on Rice, Boxer failed to ask the national security adviser and secretary of state nominee a single question. Instead, she used her time to lecture Dr. Rice in a condescending, moral tone.

Here's the question: Was Barbara Boxer out of line accusing Condoleezza Rice of lying? We're getting a ton of mail. I mean, a lot of mail.

John in New Orleans writes: "Ms. Boxer was perfectly in line, and it's high time someone consistently had the nerve to shed light on the administration's blatant manipulation of the truth in order to justify anything it wants to do."

Alan in New York: "Hey, Jack, was that condescending tone you accused Senator Boxer of employing anything like the one you use so liberally?"

Yes, it's similar.

Dean in New Jersey: "Let's face it. Barbara Boxer is out of line just being a U.S. senator."

HEMMER: Oh!

CAFFERTY: Jason in Lafayette, Indiana: "These hearings are a forum to talk about Dr. Rice's qualifications for the job, not for taking partisan cheap shots at the war in Iraq and Republicans in general."

And Doug in Bloomfield writes: "Senator Boxer's rope-a-dope technique needs more work, but she was not out of line. Outright lies are everywhere to be found in Washington, D.C."

HEMMER: Keep them coming.

O'BRIEN: Interesting feedback.

HEMMER: You touched a nerve. Thank you, Jack.

CAFFERTY: A lot of mail.

HEMMER: In a moment here, day three of the "New You Revolution." Worries about a family in Iraq are taking their toll on a grandmother's health. Dr. Gupta is back in a moment, showing us how she can get her life back on track.

And as if being a billionaire TV star was not enough, folks are lining up to give the Donald loads of free stuff. "90-Second Pop" after this.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

O'BRIEN: The new iPod, is it a repeat performance for Apple? Andy Serwer is "Minding Your Business."

Good morning.

ANDY SERWER, "FORTUNE" MAGAZINE: Good morning to you.

Apple says it's a repeat performance. We're talking about the iPod Shuffle, its new junior iPod. It says customers will have to wait two to four weeks before they get them. You know, this could just be Steve Jobs at it again with marketing. O'BRIEN: The Apple store told me they thought they'd have them this week.

SERWER: Well, you know, Steve Jobs maybe didn't make enough.

O'BRIEN: Oh.

SERWER: So, you create your own shortage; $99 for 120 songs. There it is right around his neck there. Hot, hot, hot.

A couple business briefs here, another one. Executives at KB Homes have written a letter to the executive producer of "Desperate Housewives" suggesting a little product placement. OK? Get this. This is one of the largest homemakers in the country, and they're saying that basically their homes look a lot like the homes on Wisteria Lane. So, how about, you know, sort of suggesting that it takes place in a KB Home development?

So, what's it going be? It's going to be something like this in a script. Hey, let's have a sexual encounter in a living room of this comfortable and well-appointed KB Home. I mean, it just seems kind of forced.

O'BRIEN: I mean, the show is about unhappy, desperate women...

SERWER: Right.

O'BRIEN: ... having sex sometimes on a table...

SERWER: Yes.

O'BRIEN: ... with people they're not married to.

SERWER: Yes.

O'BRIEN: Right? OK.

SERWER: I'm not sure why a company would necessarily want to identify with them.

O'BRIEN: Hey, you know...

SERWER: Maybe they would, right?

O'BRIEN: It's not for me to say, is it?

SERWER: That's right.

O'BRIEN: We just report it.

SERWER: That's it.

O'BRIEN: All right, Andy, thanks.

SERWER: You're welcome.

O'BRIEN: Bill.

HEMMER: Have we got some topics this morning? A Wednesday edition of "90-Second Pop." The gang is all here. Say hello and good morning to the prince of urban populism. He is Toure.

TOURE, CNN POP CULTURE CORRESPONDENT: Big.

HEMMER: Sarah Bernard is back with us, contributing editor for "New York" magazine.

SARAH BERNARD, CONTRIBUTING EDITOR, "NEW YORK" MAGAZINE: Good morning.

HEMMER: There you are. And Andy Borowitz from BorowitzReport.com.

How are you doing, Drew?

ANDY BOROWITZ, BOROWITZREPORT.COM: I'm doing good.

HEMMER: All right, three good topics. Donald is getting married this weekend.

BERNARD: That's right.

HEMMER: Everybody is throwing things his way, is that right?

BERNARD: Can you believe it? I know. He is the new Star Jones. That is what's happening.

BOROWITZ: And we needed one.

BERNARD: We needed one. We really missed her after that. So, Donald Trump is getting married to Melania this weekend, and they are getting an amazing amount of stuff for free.

HEMMER: Like what?

BERNARD: He is getting a $1.5 million ring that's a 13-carat diamond. I can't even imagine the size of that.

HEMMER: Does he get to keep it? Or is it just for show?

BERNARD: Yes, he gets to keep it. He actually got that half- off. So, that wasn't entirely free. But what they did get for free is her $100,000 John Galliano Dior dress, which apparently she can't even walk in. And it is so heavy that Andre Leon Talli (ph) from "Vogue," who helped her pick it out, said that she's going to have to eat a lot or she's going to faint if she walks down the aisle.

TOURE: This is the weird thing, though. We're all seeing this on the cover of "Vogue" right now. Isn't it bad luck to see the dress before?

HEMMER: Like the "Sports Illustrated" jinx?

BERNARD: Not if you get the dress for free and you need to have the publicity.

HEMMER: You know, he is 0 for 2.

BERNARD: Right.

TOURE: Well, all right, I mean, bad luck in a Trump wedding is nothing new.

BERNARD: Well, that's not it, though. John George (ph) is also -- he's donating, I guess we can say, the steak and the shrimp, and it's going to be about $46,000 that he's giving them for free. And I think that we are reaching the Trump saturation point.

BOROWITZ: Oh.

BERNARD: I mean, "The Apprentice" is starting again. Apprentice three is starting in, like, a week. And...

TOURE: No, tomorrow.

BERNARD: Oh, tomorrow? See, even more.

BOROWITZ: When they actually exchange the vows, Trump is going to go, "I do."

HEMMER: He's wearing Brioni (ph), and she's wearing Christian Dior. So, we'll look for it Saturday.

"American Idol" was back. The fourth season started last night.

TOURE: Yes.

HEMMER: How did they do?

TOURE: You know, I love Mark McGrath was one of the judges last night. And, like, if he entered the contest, he would not win. So, how does he get to be a judge? But one thing that we've learned, you do not become a star being on "American Idol." Kelly Clarkson, where is she?

BERNARD: She's huge!

(CROSSTALK)

TOURE: Like, she is not huge. Ruben is becoming Trivial Pursuit fodder. Clay, Fantasia, they're fading into stardust.

HEMMER: Clay Aiken, wait a minute. Toure, my friend, true, but for a time they were as big as you get in American pop culture...

BERNARD: Well...

(CROSSTALK)

HEMMER: ... which was a heck of a lot more than they ever had living down there in North Carolina. BERNARD: I know. That is so true. But I've got to say, the people auditioning last night were so crazy that I have to think that they're casting them as actors to play the part of crazy people.

BOROWITZ: I've got to say...

BERNARD: Because it was outrageous.

BOROWITZ: ... as far as the judges go, I'd like to see them have as a judge that guy who had the four-inch nail stuck in his head, because his threshold for pain is really high.

TOURE: Now, wait.

HEMMER: That takes us to our next topic here. Richard Hatch apparently did not report his income, is that right?

BOROWITZ: Yes. This is so true.

HEMMER: To the tune of a million bucks?

BOROWITZ: Yes, Richard Hatch, this is the guy who was the fat, naked guy on the very first "Survivor," and apparently a million dollars in the hole to the IRS. And his explanation was a little lame. He said that he thought that when he won the immunity idol, that that made him immune from taxes. So, I don't know if that's...

HEMMER: You can't do that?

BOROWITZ: Apparently not.

TOURE: How could he be so stupid? You outwit, outlast, outplay everybody on "Survivor," but you don't call your accountant. Like, it's so brain-dead.

BOROWITZ: You cannot beat the IRS.

BERNARD: He's thinking that the IRS people don't watch reality TV, which is obviously not true.

HEMMER: He made a million bucks for the show and 300 grand for, what, a Boston radio show?

BOROWITZ: Yes, and did not report it, but I think there is some plea deal going on there.

HEMMER: And he lost his clothes again. Thanks, guys. Have a great day -- Soledad.

O'BRIEN: All right, Bill, thanks.

Here's something we can all identify with: overeating because of stress. That's one problem for our "New You" participant. Dr. Gupta is going to put her back on the road to healthy living, though. That's up next on AMERICAN MORNING.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

O'BRIEN: Welcome back, everybody. It is day three of our "New You Revolution," where we're helping five participate break some bad habits.

HEMMER: And Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins us now, introducing us to our next participant, a grandmother who wants to slim down and stay that way.

Good morning.

SANJAY GUPTA, CNN MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning.

And I think she's going to do just that. Today, we want to introduce you to Sandra Garth. She's here. She is a former fitness instructor, but she admits she's fallen off the healthy bandwagon.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

GUPTA (voice over): Meet Sandra Garth.

SANDRA GARTH, "NEW YOU PARTICIPANT": Janet, where are your ears? Can you show grandma your ears?

GUPTA: Sandra Garth loves being a grandmother and caring for her family and cooking some good food.

GARTH: There is nothing special about this bacon. It is extremely unhealthy, but it is so good!

GUPTA: It's not like Sandra doesn't know a thing or two about being healthy and fit. She used to teach high-impact aerobics. But a few years ago, arthritis put an end to her exercising, but not to her cravings.

GARTH: I'm a junk food junky. I'm a chocoholic. I like everything that's not good for me. I like greasy food, fatty food, sweet food, salty food. And I have just gotten lazy.

GUPTA: So, this is just one of the reasons why she's joined our "New You Revolution." She has many more. She's reached a milestone.

GARTH: I want to be fabulous and 50. And I want to be fit and 50.

GUPTA: Plus, after raising five children, Sandra and her husband are parents once again to their grandson, Shannon.

GARTH: Our second oldest son, Casey, and his wife, Teresa, are both stationed in Iraq. They're in Tikrit, and their youngest child, Shannon, he's 2, is with us. They have an older son, Casey Jr., he's 5 and he's in Detroit with Teresa's family.

GUPTA: She admits having loved ones in a war zone makes it hard to stick to a diet. GARTH: I am a stressful eater. I'm an emotional eater. And that doesn't take away the fact, you know, I can eat all the potato chips and chocolate chip cookies in the world but it's not going to bring them back home right now.

GUPTA: So, Sandra wants to get fit for herself and set a good example for her family.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

GUPTA: Wow! And I saw you tearing up a little bit there as you watched some of those images of your grandson and your son and daughter-in-law in Iraq. Welcome.

GARTH: Thank you.

O'BRIEN: They're so cute, those little ones and your son and his wife as well.

GARTH: They're adorable, yes.

HEMMER: So, your challenge is to push yourself away from the bacon, and our challenge is to put the cameras on you on national TV and help you do this. Kind of gutsy. How do you think you'll succeed?

GARTH: I'm going to do fabulous. I'm going to do well. I have no doubt that this push from CNN is just what I need to get back on the track and stay on the track. And I'm going to do it for good this time.

O'BRIEN: How are you going to deal with the emotional stuff? Because you mentioned, again, you know, when you have a family overseas and they're in a war zone, you're a stress eater. And people who are stress eaters are sometimes distressed about the most minimal thing. I mean, you have really big stress to think about. So, how are you going to manage that?

GARTH: Well, I've got a team of people at U of M back at home that are helping me through it. I've got some numbers that I can call in case of a potato chip emergency, and they'll talk me through it. They'll help me through it. I've got a wonderful support system at home that is there for me all the time. And I've got it in my head now that this time I'm going to do it for real. I'm going to deal with it.

I've put this weight on by myself. I've got help taking it off. But I know when it comes down to it, when I am listening to CNN and I'm hearing about the insurgent attacks and the bombings and everything and I see information coming across the screen that there's something that's happened in Tikrit, I just have to just hunker down and just have some faith that everything is going to be all right. And go for it.

O'BRIEN: Potato chips aren't going to help.

GARTH: No, they're not going to help.

O'BRIEN: At all.

GARTH: Not at all. They taste good going down, but that's it.

GUPTA: And you just mentioned your team of experts at the University of Michigan. We helped assemble them to help with your new goals. Here's your "New You Revolution" prescription.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

GARTH: I just fell off, and it's time to get back on the wagon.

GUPTA (voice over): Well, Sandra, here's our "New You Revolution" plan for you. Lose your bad snacking habits, be active again and watch the excess pounds start coming off.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What I really want you to focus on is consistency and enjoying it.

GUPTA: With the help of an exercise physiologist, a behavior specialist and a nutritionist from the University of Michigan, we're going to learn how to control portion sizes, exercise safely, and also be doing a lot of walking and resistance training. All in all, try to move about 10,000 steps a day and record your activities. That will help you form your new good habits.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

GUPTA: Sandra Garth, we wish you lots of luck. Do you think you can do it?

GARTH: I can do it.

GUPTA: All right.

HEMMER: Yes, you can.

O'BRIEN: Absolutely. The next time you come back, bring the kids, too, so we can see them.

GARTH: That would be a riot.

GUPTA: Thanks so much for joining us.

Coming up, we're going to introduce you to a young woman -- that's tomorrow -- who wants to start a family.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

THEKIA FISCHER, "NEW YOU" PARTICIPANT: I'm worried that if I'm not in good shape before I get pregnant, it's going to be that much harder.

(END VIDEO CLIP) GUPTA: We'll tell you about her "New You Revolution." That's coming up tomorrow. Of course, you can follow all of the participants and provide encouragement. We got a lot of it last year. Log on to CNN.com/am.

HEMMER: It's great to have you, Sandra. Good luck.

GARTH: Thank you very much.

HEMMER: All right, in a moment here, religion and leadership. How big a role does God play in the president's decisions? We'll talk to a man who should know, Mr. Bush's spiritual advisor, our guest ahead on AMERICAN MORNING.

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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