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Sean Taylor Mourned; Severe Midwestern Weather; More Clinton Hostage Information

Aired December 2, 2007 - 16:00   ET

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


FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN, ANCHOR: Right now, in the NEWSROOM. Winter from coast to coast, heavy snow on the northeast, snarled traffic in the Midwest and now rain and wind head out that way, west as well. We're attracting the extreme weather also.
It's an emotional day of football for the Washington Redskins and thousands of their fans as they remember Sean Taylor. A live report straight ahead.

First let's talk about and tackle weather. Big storm of the season. It's also being blamed now for at least eight deaths. And they all died in vehicle wrecks. From Colorado into Michigan and on roads that turned deadly because of the ice and the snow. Armies of plows are out in force today. There are reports that the roads are still very hazardous. Snow emergencies in effect today in Minneapolis and St. Paul. Today, Iowa is thawing out from a quarter-inch sheet of ice that slowed presidential campaigning there. Jacqui Jeras is standing by in the weather center to tell us exactly where this storm might be headed next.

JACQUI JERAS, CNN, METEOROLOGIST: It's making its way through the Great Lakes and pushing into the northeastern corridor as we speak, Fredericka. You know, what a storm. This thing has really been brutal ever since its conception. It started way out in the southwest, moved across the plain states. Today it's moving across the Great Lakes here and just getting started in the northeastern quarter with a little bit of a wintry mix of precipitation. We'll start out with some of the heavier rain showers here. You can see as it starts to pull out of Milwaukee finally on the northern fringes we're getting a little freezing rain and just a little bit of that light snow into northern Michigan. We could see some accumulations.

On the southern tier here as it pulls out of the boot heel of Missouri on into western Kentucky into southwestern parts of Indiana. These storms could be strong, possibly severe this afternoon. A lot of energy with this storm. And now into the northeast we've been seeing some light snow in flurries here throughout much of the day, but don't be fooled by some of this white you see in here. Most of that is sleet being reported into the Philadelphia area.

New York City, this is the first hour that we've been reporting dry weather. We've been getting some light snow all morning long. Let's go ahead and take a look at a live picture in New York City. We're expecting the snow to continue to push into the area throughout the afternoon, and we'll likely see some freezing rain developing through the late evening hours, then changing back over to all rain. Once you get rid of all the wet weather, say, midday tomorrow, expect the winds to pull in. And they are going to be brutal. We're talking 50- mile-per-hour wind gusts possible tomorrow afternoon in New York City. If you have any flights, make sure you call ahead because there's no doubt we're going to have delays all across the northeast for tomorrow.

The snowfall will be heaviest across parts of New England, and of course in the mountainous areas 10 to 18 inches expected in Burlington, Vermont. Portland, Maine could see 8 to 12 inches. And then everywhere you see the light blue that's where we're expecting to see snow and sleet. If that's not enough to keep you busy today, Fredricka, we've got an unbelievable storm out west. I'm going to tell you all about that in less than a half hour.

WHITFIELD: Yes, really keeping you busy. All right, Jacqui, thank you.

Well, people in Minnesota and Wisconsin are battle hardened when it comes to winter weather, but this blast seemed to be too much too soon, especially for the drivers. CNN's Susan Roesgen has more.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE, COURTESY OF KCCI)

SUSAN ROESGEN, CNN, CORRESPONDNET: This is what worries people a lot more than snow. Ice. Ice on cars, ice on roads, and ice on power lines. 14,000 people at least lost power when the lines went down. It was even too icy at airports. Planes slid off the runways in Des Moines, Iowa and Madison, Wisconsin. Dozens of flights were cancelled. And driving in some spots wasn't much easier. How could people who always get snow forget how to drive in it?

MELISSA GOVRIK, MINNEAPOLIS DRIVER: You know how us Minnesotans drive, we act like we don't go through this every year, but everybody's driving so slow, and the cold, I just went into Target and got my gloves and my hat. So, I wasn't ready for it at all.

ROESGEN: From Minnesota to the windswept roads of South Dakota, for some, driving was just a hassle. For others, as it was for drivers in Detroit, it was treacherous. More than 100 car crashes in Wisconsin Saturday, and at least one person was killed there. The first winter storm of the season in the Midwest came in fast and furious. And only guys with big shovels felt superior to the snow.

PAT LANE, SNOW PLOWER: I went through blizzards of 1976.

ROESGEN: So this is nothing?

LANE: Nothing. We're used to this.

ROESGEN: But it is rough for drivers out there.

LANE: I was one of them. Trust me, it was really, really rough.

ROESGEN: It could be rough for a while. It is only the start of December. Susan Roesgen, CNN, Minneapolis.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WHITFIELD: And then all along the east coast and, quite frankly, across the country somber faces. The number 21 prominently displayed on every helmet, in particular at this Washington Redskins game today. And for a brief moment you could actually hear a pin drop in NFL stadiums brimming with fans. The league is paying tribute to Sean Taylor on the first major game day since the Redskins player's death. And you can imagine what the mood is like at the Redskins' home field. Gary Nurenberg joins us from Fedex Stadium in Landover, Maryland. Gary.

GARY NURENBERG, CNN, CORRESPONDENT: Fredricka, one of the most memorable salutes came from Taylor's teammates on the first defensive play of the game. It cost them. But they put only ten men on the field, leaving Taylor's position vacant in tribute. As for the fans, ask them what they think of Sean Taylor and you get a nearly universal answer.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALES: We're going to win this one for Sean.

NURENBERG (voice-over): Fans wore his number, 21, on shirts, on sleeves, on their faces, his name on their lips.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And we pray for Sean. Grant him your peace.

NURENBERG: Tailgating parties stopped for prayer.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's not like coming to a football game today. It's like coming to a funeral.

NURENBERG: Fans entering the stadium passed a shrine in his honor, flowers, posters, tributes, heartfelt and handwritten.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's just very sad. But it means a lot to all of us.

NURENBERG: Some said they felt compelled to be here.

UNIDENTIFED FEMALE: Just wanting to be here with the Redskin family, with the fans, that's important because I was surprised the way it affected me.

NURENBERG: It affected thousands here. Inside, before kickoff...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Please join us in a moment of silence as we honor his memory.

NURENBERG: Everyone in the NFL wore the number 21 on their helmets Sunday. In Florida, a fourth defendant made an initial appearance via teleconference on murder charges in the case. As with the others, no bond was granted.

(END VIDEOTAPE) NURENBERG: It's a pressure-filled week for the Redskins. The entire team, not just the team but the entire Redskins organization flies to Florida tomorrow for Taylor's funeral and then back here for a couple quick days of practice and another game on Thursday. Tough week, Fredricka.

WHITFIELD: Oh, it's been a tough week, indeed. And another tough week ahead. Gary, thank you so much.

And as Gary just mentioned, hours before the game a fourth man arrested in the Taylor case made his first court appearance in Ft. Myers. 19-year-old Jason Scott Mitchell. His request for bond was denied. Same as it was for three other defendants. The suspects are now being transferred to Miami, where they will head to court again, possibly tomorrow. Nick Spinetto from Ft. Myers affiliate WINK is tracking this story. And what can you tell us, Nick, about what police are learning about the four suspects, what indeed the motive was, how did it come to this?

NICK SPINETTO, WINK, CORRESPONDENT: Well, actually, right now, Fredricka, we've learned through law enforcement source that they're actually searching for a fifth suspect right now. We haven't been able to determine who the suspect is or where the suspect is. Obviously, that's why they're searching for this person. We don't know their gender or anything like that. But we can tell you that there is a fifth suspect that law enforcement is working for right now. And as for a motive, we're told that this was really just a burglary, a botched burglary, that they, these four suspects did not intend to kill Sean Taylor, that they went there with the intention to rob him and then they didn't expect him to be there, and then obviously the outcome was that they shot and killed him, allegedly.

WHITFIELD: And Nick, do you know anything more about the relationship between at least one of the suspects and possibly the relationship with the half-sister of Sean?

SPINETTO: Last night, Fredricka, I did a story with Sasha Johnson's father, Dwayne. Now, Sasha and Sean are half-brother and sister. And he told me that he, well, first I just want to say that in relation to their, Sasha's relationship with one of the suspects goes like this. She is dating, from sources we've heard, she's dating Charles Wardlow's uncle. Now, Charles Wardlow is one of the suspects involved in this murder. So that's the relationship there, that she's dating one of his uncles. In terms of how it went, how they got to know Sean Taylor, things are still kind of sketchy with that. We haven't been able to get concrete information. But I can tell you last night when I spoke to Sasha's dad, Dwayne, he was adamant saying that Sasha had absolutely no involvement in this murder. Because we've been hearing from various sources that she may have inadvertently have said something to Charles Wardlow's uncle and then he may have said something to the suspects about how much money Sean Taylor keeps in his mouse and so forth. But we have been able to say that she is, her father is very adamantly denying that she is not involved in this murder, saying that she's very distraught, very upset, and she was very close with Sean.

WHITFIELD: So sad on so many levels. Nick Spinetto of WINK out of Ft. Myers, Florida, thank you so much.

Well, straight ahead some international news. He wants to rule the country for life. President Hugo Chavez casting his vote today. But it's the people of Venezuela who will actually decide.

And this car at the center of a police pursuit. The driver rammed a few police cars before it was all over. But get this, it's something about the suspect you that really want to learn about. That's straight ahead in the NEWSROOM.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WHITFIELD: Today's constitutional referendum in Venezuela could hit you in the wallet. President Hugo Chavez says he'll stop oil exports to America if the U.S. interferes with the vote or its results. CNN's Harris Whitbeck is live in the Venezuelan capital of Caracas. So the polls are closed right now. How long before we know the results?

HARRIS WHITBECK, CNN, CORRESPONDENT: Well, Fredricka, the polls have actually not closed. Electoral officials here came on TV just a short while ago to say that while the official hour for poll closing has passed there are still people at voting centers, so polls will remain open until all of those who want to can cast their votes on this election, which is considered crucial to Venezuela's immediate future. The day here, no major incidents to report on this day that started very, very early for some voters.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

WHITBECK (voice-over): The morning headline, potentially 16 million voters could decide on the future of Venezuela's constitution. Since the early morning hours voters lined up at polling stations across the country to vote a simple yes or no. President Chavez himself said this is the most crucial electoral process his government has ever faced. At stake, 69 constitutional amendments that would make it easier for Chavez to implement a full socialist state in Venezuela. Mario Sardinas waited for hours to cast his vote in a middle-class district in the capital.

MARIO SARDINAS, VENEZUELAN VOTER: I'm not comfortable with the social democracy. I'm not comfortable with communism. And I don't like to be told what to do. I like to have freedom. I love freedom.

WHITBECK: Across town in a working-class neighborhood Soraida Romero also cast her vote early on Sunday. She says she did it for her six children.

"There has to be more equality," she said. "No more I belong here and you belong there." Crowds at many polling centers were relatively small. Some voters said there were long waits due to malfunctioning voting machines. And while they waited, many wondered what the headline tomorrow will be.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WHITBECK: President Chavez has said that he will accept any results that are announced tonight after polls close. There's still no word on how the rest of the country would react - Opposition and Chavez sympathizers alike to whatever the results are. Fredricka.

WHITFIELD: All right. Harris Whitbeck, thanks so much, from Caracas.

And stick around for this. HEADLINE NEWS host Glenn Beck's take on Hugo Chavez and his latest political maneuvers. That and more from the author of "An Inconvenient Book." That's the book cover you're seeing right there. We're going to talk to him about his book as well and all other things in today's headlines. That's straight ahead in the NEWSROOM.

Well, Venezuelans weren't the only ones casting ballots today. Russians went to the polls as well to elect a new lower house of parliament. According to the Associated Press, exit polls suggest that President Vladimir Putin's party has taken more than 60% of the vote. Putin's second and final term ends next year, and he has floated the idea of taking the prime minister's post if his party wins big today. Opposition leaders accuse the Kremlin of rigging the vote to bolster Putin's power.

And we'll bring you updates on Russia's election results as we get them. Also, later tonight, catch "Czar Putin," Christiane Amanpour's report from the CNN special investigations unit. "Czar Putin" airs 10:00 p.m. Eastern right here on CNN.

Well, he is back after being silenced nearly eight months for insensitive remarks. Imus returns. Is he a different man behind the mike?

And a big shock for police in pursuit of this car. The driver wasn't your usual suspect. More to come in the CNN NEWSROOM.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WHITFIELD: Well, here's a thought. Did a TV ad prompt Friday's five- hour hostage standoff in New Hampshire? The stepson of the suspect says Leeland Eisenberg may have been spurred to action by a Hillary Clinton health care spot. CNN's Jim Acosta is on the scene in Rochester, New Hampshire. He joins us live with details on that. Jim.

JIM ACOSTA, CNN, CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Fredricka. I should explain what's going on behind me so people aren't confused. This is the annual winter parade in Rochester, New Hampshire. But on the other side of the parade is the Clinton campaign office. As for Leeland Eisenberg, he has a court appearance tomorrow. Hi arraignment is scheduled to happen about 1:00 in the afternoon. And over the weekend we learned more about this suspect in the hostage taking on Friday. According to his stepson, who we spoke to earlier today, Leeland Eisenberg was prompted to go over to this campaign office looking for Senator Clinton because of a TV ad that he saw, a campaign commercial touting Hillary Clinton's ability to help people get good health care. In that campaign commercial there is a father who claims that Hillary Clinton helped his son get a bone marrow transplant. And according to the stepson of Leeland Eisenberg, Benjamin Warren, he told us his stepfather thought after seeing this ad that Hillary Clinton could help him, too. As for his stepfather, he told us basically he needed help and he couldn't get it. Meanwhile, as for those former hostages, they are said to be recovering at various homes around Rochester, New Hampshire. They have not been made available by the campaign to reporters for interviews. But we did hear from one friend of one of those former hostages, who told one of our affiliates that he had a very disturbing conversation with one of those hostages on the phone during the standoff.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DAN NAGY, CLINTON CAMPAIGN WORKER: I just can picture her face inside that building, talking on the phone, crying her eyes out, not knowing what's going to happen. That's the hardest part.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ACOSTA: And as for Leeland Eisenberg, once again, he is going to be in court tomorrow for a 1:00 arraignment, where he will have his charges officially read to him. No word yet whether he has an attorney at this point. But it is expected that he will face felony kidnapping charges which, according to authorities, could add up to a lengthy prison term. Fredricka.

WHITFIELD: All right. Jim Acosta, thank you so much, from Rochester, New Hampshire.

Well, a new tip is raising new questions in the disappearance of Stacy Peterson. Two truckers say Drew Peterson and another man approached them early on October 29th at an Illinois truck stopping asking if they would deliver a package. Stacy Peterson went missing the day before. An attorney for the former police sergeant denies that that even happened. Yesterday's winter storm affected the search for the missing mom. Sleet, snow, and cold forced more than 200 volunteers back inside. But a vigil for Stacy Peterson did go on as planned.

Well, police in North Carolina reportedly were ready to taser the driver of a suspicious car after it rammed into three police cars and struck pylons protecting pumps at a gas station yesterday. Police were surprised, however, to find that behind the wheel was a 10-year- old boy. He was treated for non-life-threatening injuries, and he is expected to face a number of traffic violations.

Don Imus. You know the name. Well, he returns to the radio airwaves tomorrow. But will the controversial talker be contrite, defiant, or none of the above? It's been nearly eight months since Imus was canned for making insensitive remarks about the Rutgers women's basketball team. Well, his new show's format will include at least one African- American, who will take part regularly. Imus's weekday show will air on Citadel broadcast stations around the country.

Well, can't get away from the snow and the ice blanketing much of the Midwest as the first big winter storm of the season makes its way across the country now? See who just might be hit next by this blast.

And a big boost for presidential candidate John McCain. What was it? You'll find out. Next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WHITFIELD: Well, here's what's happening right now in the news. Officials in Venezuela says there has been a massive turnout for today's constitutional referendum. President Hugo Chavez is seeking changes that would eliminate term limits for him and expand his power. The referendum could hit you in the wallet as well. Chavez says he'll halt oil exports to America if the U.S. interferes with the vote or the results.

And a moment of silence today for murdered pro football player Sean Taylor. The NFL is paying tribute on the first major game day since the Redskins player's death.

Let's check in with Jacqui Jeras, who has her hands full with a lot of sleet, snow, and all other things wet. Even out west.

JERAS: Yes. This is incredible, Fredricka. The power of this storm is just unbelievable. The amount of rain, the amount of snow, and the incredible wind gust. We've seen reports of winds gusting over 100 miles per hour. That's like a category 2 hurricane. Unbelievable. Of course, that's all right into the coastal areas. And look at the i-5 corridor, with all that rain coming down, just very heavy, as much as two inches per hour. These are some of the sustained winds out there.

Look at Hoquiam, those winds just jumped up to 40 miles per hour sustained and of course the gusts are beyond that. Now, we are expecting a few hours from now those winds to kind of wane off a little bit but we are expecting them to be picking back up for tomorrow. Here are a few of those reports I was talking about. Cape Blanco 109 miles per hour, Long Prairie 83, 82, at Summer Lake, Van Bremmer, California 72 miles per hour and 41 in North Bend, Oregon.

Here's a look at Portland, and that rain is really coming down on the northwest side of town. We're looking at estimates of about three to four inches has already fallen. But just west of there in a town called Forest Grove it looks like as much as eight inches has come down. Look at that wet stuff there in Portland, kind of a nice shot though. Looking for better weather maybe say by the middle of the week.

Take a trip up to the north and there you can see Seattle, and to the west there over to the Olympics is where we can see as much as 7 to 10 inches of rain fall between today and tomorrow so major flooding is anticipated here and really any of those rivers that go through the Olympics and move on down could be flooding out of their banks and a few of them could be reaching record levels. This is the summary here for the Pacific Northwest, looking at 10 to 20 inches of snow in the higher elevations, 4 to 10 inches of rain, and wind gusts beyond hurricane strength. This is an unbelievable storm.

But Fredricka, high pressure is blocking things up here into the west. The storm, believe it or not, is actually going to kind of go up and over the region. So we're not even getting a direct slam from this one.

WHITFIELD: Wow. One word -- brrr and yuck. So two words. All right. Thanks a lot, Jacqui.

Well, CNN's I-reporters are sending us pictures of all that ice and snow. Particularly ice and snow that hit the Midwest. Giovanni Sanchez took this picture outside of his home in Murray, Utah. It's about 30 degrees out, which he describes as not too cold. Is he crazy?

And Paris Bhandari took this picture of icy trees outside his apartment in Omaha, Nebraska. He says there's about half an inch of ice on just about everything.

And Paul Emmerich sent this photo of the ice we are lives in Blair, Nebraska. Nice shot. He says the weather is miserable there. He's being honest. In Nevada a quarter of an inch of ice covering everything there.

Well, now to the campaign trail and some pretty big news for John McCain's presidential campaign. Today New Hampshire's largest and most important newspaper officially endorsed the Arizona Republican. The "New Hampshire Union Leader" says McCain's record, character, and courage set him apart from the other candidates. The newspaper's conservative editorial page is influential among Republican and Republican-leaning voters.

The race in Iowa, incredibly tight. So tight that even ice and snow can't keep the Democratic presidential candidates away. Last night they braved the wintry weather to attend a forum on African-American and Latino concerns. And CNN's Jessica Yellin reports from Des Moines.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JESSICE YELLIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): It got off to a rough start when the microphones failed.

(UNIDENTIFIED MALE): Oh, no.

(UNIDENTIFIED MALE): Testing, one, two, three.

YELLIN: Which led to some comical moments.

(UNIDENTIFIED MALE): Barack, I want to thank you for passing the baton in this race.

YELLIN: Senator Biden arrives late.

(UNIDENTIFIED MALE): Senator, if I can give you a chance to brush the sleet off your lapels.

YELLIN: He'd driven from Chicago after the weather shuttered the Des Moines airport for hours. And he managed this dig at Senator Clinton.

SENATOR BIDEN: I arrived from Chicago. I apologize. And I don't have a plane. YELLIN: With those surprises over, the candidates had some for each other. The format allowed each to ask one question of any candidate, which spawned this from New Mexico's governor.

(UNIDENTIFIED MALE): And my question to Senator Clinton is don't you think that governors make good presidents?

HILLARY CLINTON, (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANIDATE: Well, Bill, I think they also make good vice presidents.

YELLIN: Congressman Kucinich, eternally complaining about being left out of the discussion, took advantage of the rare opening.

REP. DENNIS KICINICH, (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANIDATE: The candidate that I have a question to is Congressman Kucinich. Congressman -- Congressman Kucinich, I thought I'd get him in the question, Terry, here.

YELLIN: The latest "Des Moines register" poll shows Barack Obama, Senator Clinton, and John Edwards in a statistical dead heat, with Obama coming out on top in this poll. And after weeks of attacks on Senator Clinton's policies, you might think Edwards and Obama would keep after her in this debate. But instead Edwards stepped back from the fray to praise the Chicago senator for his work fighting poverty.

JOHN EDWARDS, (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANIDATE: I think our voices together are more powerful than our voices alone. My question to Senator Obama is will he commit with me to commit as president of the United States to push for raising the minimum wage.

BARACK OBAMA, (D) PRESIDENTIAL CANIDATE: The answer is yes.

YELLIN: And Senator Obama lobbed this to Senator Biden on the status of hate crimes legislation.

OBAMA: Can we move this forward? It is something that I will prioritize as president. But I don't want to have to wait until I am.

BIDEN: By the way, we can and we should move it forward.

YELLIN: Leaving Senator Clinton sitting quietly out of the conversation. In fact, the toughest challenge of the night was from Senator Dodd, who went after Edwards for his votes on a bankruptcy bill that he says has hurt working-class Americans.

SENATOR CHRIS DODD: Could you explain to me why in the midst of that only five or six years ago you'd vote for a piece of legislation like, that which did so much damage to so many families in our country?

EDWARDS: Yeah, I as wrong. I was wrong, and you were right, Chris.

YELLIUN: After the event I spoke with Senator Clinton's pollster Mark Penn. He emphasized that this race in Iowa is still incredibly fluid, and he reminded us that last time around no candidate pulled ahead until a week before the caucus. The "Des Moines Register" shows that nearly half of those they polled say they could still change their minds and be wooed away by another candidate. So this race in Iowa looks to be tight down to the very end.

Jessica Yellin, CNN, Des Moines, Iowa.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD: And of course Jessica Yellin part of the best political team on television. Remember, you can get political news anytime just by logging on to CNN.com/ticker.

Well, it's being called one of the biggest cases of the U.S. Supreme Court that it will face since 9/11. It's about foreign prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and their right to challenge their detention. Legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin weighs in.

And running a marathon, a challenge in and of itself. But how about this? Pushing a stroller with not one, not two, but four kids inside. We'll ask this running dad what in the world is he doing?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WHITFIELD: It's been at the heart of a lot of debates. Do detainees at Guantanamo Bay have the right to challenge their detentions? That's a question facing the U.S. Supreme Court this week. Some legal analysts say it's one of the most important cases that justices have tackled since 9/11. Our senior Pentagon correspondent Jamie McIntyre has this preview.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JAMIE MCINTYRE, CNN SENIOR PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: For one hour the justices will hear arguments about whether foreign prisoners held in Guantanamo, some for as long as five years, are entitled to a fundamental right guaranteed to every American, habeas corpus, the right to petition for relief against unlawful detention. Charles Swift is a former military attorney who vigorously defended a Yemeni man accused of being Osama Bin Laden's bodyguard and driver.

CHARLES SWIFT, FORMER MILITARY DEFENSE ATTORNEY: They want to look their accusers in the face. They want to be able to say this is what I did. They want to have an opportunity to exonerate themselves.

MCINTYRE: But the Bush administration argues that the more than 300 detainees held in Guantanamo are enemy combatants whose rights are adequately protected by the Military Commissions Act passed by Congress last year.

DAVID RIVKIN, FORMER DEPT. OF JISTICE LAWYER: Frankly, the detainees under MCA have more due process than any captured enemy combatant, lawful or unlawful, ever had in any war in human history, including anywhere in which the United States was a party.

MCINTYRE: But attorneys bringing the case before the Supreme Court argue military officials, not independent judges, are deciding the fate of detainees in a process that does not allow prisoners to have lawyers or present their own evidence. The defendants in the case are an Algerian arrested in Bosnia in 2001 and a Kuwaiti citizen captured in Pakistan in 2002.

ED LAZARUS, AUTHOR, "CLOSED CHAMBERS:" I do think that's going to trouble a number of the justices particularly with respect to the ones from Bosnia where the Bosnian government conducted an investigation, decided these people were not implicated in the alleged attempt to bomb the U.S. Embassy over there.

MCINTYER: The constitution says a Writ of Hapias Corpus may be suspended only in cases of rebellion or invasion. It's a high standard.

SWIFT: But it is a greater threat than the Nazis. This is a greater threat than the Civil War to our union and our freedom. That's difficult for me to swallow.

MCINTYER: There's an unusual wrinkle in the case. Back in April the high court declined to hear it but then in June reversed itself and said it would decide if Guantanamo prisoners enjoy the same basic rights as Americans. One legal expert thinks that means the Supreme Court wants to set some guidelines but is unlikely to overturn the military commission's process.

Jamie McIntyre, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD: It is indeed a high-stakes case. That's why I talked to CNN legal -- senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin about it.

Bring me up to speed with where we are on Guantanamo and the Supreme Court because it seems as though there have been a lot of cases as it pertains to Guantanamo in the U.S. Supreme Court. Why is this one different?

JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN SR. LEGAL ANALYST: This one's different because all the other cases which the Bush administration has largely lost involve unilateral agency actions by the president saying these are the rules and that's all the rights that the detainees get. What's different about this case, which the court is about to hear, is that there was an act of Congress called the Military Commissions Act where Congress and the president together decided what the rules would be for trying the detainees, and that is something that the court is usually much more deferential to. So the Bush administration has a much better chance in the Supreme Court in the case that's being heard this week than it did in the earlier case.

WHITFIELD: Much better chance because we're dealing with a much more conservative court?

TOOBIN: Well, that's partially true. But the other thing is the court always looks -- always gives more deference to an act that was voted on by Congress and then signed by the president than simply an act by the president without consultation with Congress. This is a law that the Congress -- a law that was passed by both Houses of Congress and signed by the president. That's something that the court always hesitates more to overturn than simply an act by the president where he hasn't even consulted Congress.

WHITFIELD: So it's still unclear what rights these detainees might have. Perhaps the Supreme Court will nail it down for us. But among those rights are a right to counsel, a right perhaps not even to be held at Guantanamo, and a right of knowing exactly what the charges are that have so many detainees being held.

TOOBIN: Well, amazingly enough, they're not even fully at that stage yet. These detainees, many of them have been there for five, six years, and the legal system has yet to figure out a way to deal with them. The precise issue in front of the court now is whether the detainees have the right to Habeas Corpus. Can they go to federal district court and say let's -- you know, I'm not being treated properly? Because what Congress and the president were trying to do was simply revoke that right from the detainees.

And that's something that the court is very reluctant in general to allow Congress to do, which is simply to say these people are outside the reach of federal court. That's the heart of the issue in front of the Supreme Court next week.

WHITFIELD: All right. All eyes will be on the Supreme Court. And I understand, Jeffrey, all eyes are on nine as well. Your book, top ten "New York Times" list for the year. Congratulations.

TOOBIN: Thank you. That was very exciting news I got this week.

WHITFIELD: Very exciting. And it is a great book. Still trying to get through it all because it's a thick one.

TOOBIN: It's not that thick.

WHITFIELD: You can't talk about the Supreme Court and it not be a thick book. Comprehensive.

TOOBIN: You've got to show you're serious.

WHITFIELD: All right, Jeffrey. You nailed it. Thanks so much.

Well, a Nevada doctor pushing family values to the limit indeed. We'll talk to him about today's marathon. And you're looking at some of the images of that marathon.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WHITFIELD: All right. So most runners take a marathon in stride. Well, one father took it in stroll. Er. Dr. Mostafa Sheta ran the Las Vegas Marathon, all 26.2 miles, yeah; he is pushing a stroller with four newborns inside that stroller. That plan won't mean a first place finish. But it might mean a first-place finish in the record books. He just finished up in that race in Las Vegas. And so he joins me now by phone to tell us just how he did and, more importantly, how did your four-month-old quadruplets, Dr. Sheta, do?

MOSTAFA SHETA, MARATHON RUNNER, (via telephone): They did so wonderful. I was amazed how they enjoyed the run. They slept most of the time. So this was a blessing. And a few moments of, you know, they wanted to stop for feeding and stuff and take care of that.

WHITFIELD: Well, yeah, I guess that would happen. Let's back it up with a little bit of what in the world are you doing running a marathon with these newborns in tow?

SHETA: Well, I run in marathons, and I obviously have a big family, and I thought this would be an inspiration for people, that they can actually practice their sport, which is in my case running, and also take care of their family in the same time and that there is no contradiction between both activities.

WHITFIELD: Wow. OK. And you talked about a big family. We happen to have a still photograph which is really a beautiful picture of you and your -- I've lost count. How many kids?

SHETA: I have eight children.

WHITFIELD: Oh, my gosh. That's remarkable. Now, for your quadruplets, then, the four-month-olds, how many times have they been on these kinds of runs with you? Long distance. More than a couple of hours. And it's cold.

SHETA: We've been practicing the last two months, and we started with a smaller run, and then we ended with full training of 26 miles, and they did very well on all our training.

WHITFIELD: Wow. And so tell me about these pit stops, because it's one thing to be in this race. The runners themselves oftentimes need to make a little pit stop on these 26 miles. But in the case of these four babies, which need feeding, which need diaper changing; you're doing it all, aren't you?

SHETA: Yes. It was quite a challenge. The challenge was not the 26. Rather, it was the logistic to take care of the babies. And we had to have a few stops. I had people helping me with providing milk bottles and the diapers, and when we needed we stopped and we took care of the babies. That took a little bit extra time, but --

WHITFIELD: And what about the babies? Were they chirping? Were they crying? Were they doing anything during this run?

SHETA: They -- they were fine. They were looking around, and they were amazed by how many people they were seeing, you know. And also, you know all the activities on the road. And sometimes they cried a little bit, you know, if they need to be fed. And we took care of that right away, and they stopped the crying. They were wonderful during the whole run.

WHITFIELD: Wow. Well, those are some great running partners you have there. OK. So when will you find out whether you and the babies make it into the record books?

SHETA: We actually checked. There is nobody before that marathon ran with four children. So we already did something what never done before. Now, we might have to be qualified for the fastest runner or not the fastest runner of a marathon, but we know already that we ran with four children. So the number of the children was never done before.

WHITFIELD: Wow. Well, that is remarkable. It's so fun to see the video as well. Glad we were able to get that. And Dr. Sheta, congratulations.

SHETA: I was feeding Brianna. She's always the cranky one.

WHITFIELD: Oh, really? And she's letting you know whose boss perhaps, huh? All right. Dr. Sheta, thank you so much. Congratulations to you and your quadruplets for an incredible finish.

A Hollywood star shining the spotlight on someone she calls a hero. In the fight against HIV and Aids. Actress Ashley Judd says Kate Roberts is the star and she's making a difference.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD: We've all heard about celebrities who are trying to use their fame for good. Well, in doing that they often meet people who have made charity a way of life. Well, in today's "CNN Heroes: Sharing the Spotlight" Actress and activist Ashley Judd introduces us to a woman who's trying to fight Aids by marketing her message to a new generation.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ASHLEY JUDD: Okay. You all ready?

(UNIDENTIFIED MALE): Ready to go.

JUDD: For me a real hero definitely has some sort of spiritual charge. I'm Ashley Judd, and Kate Roberts is my hero because she has a very clear vision, which is a world free of HIV.

KATE ROBERTS: In the '90s I was working for a leading advertising agency in Eastern Europe. I became a sort of expert youth marketer.

JUDD: By her own description her job was to sell soda pop, bubble gum, and cigarettes to 12-year-olds.

ROBERTS: I decided to take a vacation. I went to South Africa. I saw a funeral on every corner, and I was told that 1 in 4 14-year-old schoolgirls were already infected with HIV. I remember the hairs going up on the back of my head. I just knew that I had to do something. The idea of youth aid was really to use Hollywood and the music industry and Corporate America to reach the world's youth with a life-saving message.

(UNIDENTIFIED MALE): Protect yourself. Protect your friends. Protect everyone's future.

JUDD: Kate devotes her energy into making positive lifestyle choices hip, slick, and cool.

ROBERTS: We have a lot of products that we are marketing and selling around the world to raise money for our programs. This is the famous campaign, see no evil, with two types of tags -- military style, and then there is the actual work in the field, to get people to protect themselves.

(UNIDENTIFED FEMALE): I'm too young.

(UNIDENTIFIED MALE): Me too. I'm going to chill.

ROBERTS: What I'm doing now is selling life. It's no different than marketing a can of soda.

If you really want to make something happen, you can make it happen. If you've just got the drive and the passion, it really is as simple as that.

JUDD: To see what Kate has done has been very inspiring to me. She's relentless.

ROBEERS: Our larger mission is to change behavior worldwide, really put Aids on the map, and make it cool to care.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD: So to meet the 18 finalists up for the grand prize on Thursday and the blue ribbon panel who will decide log on to CNN.com/heroes.

Plus CNN's Anderson Cooper and Christiane Amanpour preview the big event tonight at 9:00 Eastern on "Larry King Live."

The next hour of the CNN NEWSROOM starts right now.

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

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