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Baseball Stars & Steroids; Clinton and Obama Skirmishes; Kettle Full of Cash for Salvation Army
Aired December 13, 2007 - 11:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
TONY HARRIS, CNN ANCHOR: And good morning again, everyone. You're with CNN. You're informed.
I'm Tony Harris.
HEIDI COLLINS, CNN ANCHOR: Hi there, everybody. I'm Heidi Collins.
Developments keep coming into the CNN NEWSROOM on this Thursday, the 13th of December.
Here's what's on the rundown.
Baseball steroid investigation goes public today. Dozens of big leaguers expected to be named. Already one big name out there.
HARRIS: Mental health care for war vets. Some say the system is failing American fighters. This hour, one family's tragedy.
COLLINS: A bell ringer gets his kettle stuffed. Who put in the $100 bills?
Three thousand dollar question -- in the NEWSROOM.
It could be the biggest scandal to hit Major League Baseball in almost 100 years. ESPN is reporting future Hall of Famer Roger Clemens is named among suspected steroids users. A sports network is crediting an unnamed source. The official report due about three hours from now.
CNN Senior Correspondent Allan Chernoff is in New York now to set the stage for us.
Allan, how big a impact is this report likely to have, especially with the possibility of that name being on it?
ALLAN CHERNOFF, CNN SR. CORRESPONDENT: You can add another name to that list as well. ESPN just minutes ago reporting that Roger Clemens' friend, Andy Pettitte, another New York Yankees pitcher, also is going to be named. According to ESPN, the trainer that the two ballplayers had shared has been cooperating with the Mitchell investigation.
And again, ESPN reporting that Roger Clemens -- surely everyone expects Roger Clemens to be put into the Hall of Fame -- as well as Andy Pettitte, another star pitcher for the New York Yankees, to be named in this report. That according to ESPN.
Now, of course, the expectation is that the Mitchell Report will be naming dozens and dozens of players. In fact, according to ESPN, as many as 80 professional ballplayers. We also know for sure that we are going to see lots of criticism of Major League Baseball and the players union for allowing all of this to happen for years and years. Of course, it's only in the past few years, past couple of years, that Major League Baseball has actually been even testing for performance- enhancing drugs.
Now, the report, according to many sources, does recommend outsourcing of that testing program. Also, an upgrading of the technology used to test. And more transparency in the results of those tests.
So, Heidi this certainly is going to be a blockbuster. Senator Mitchell is planning to put that report out at 2:00 Eastern Time.
COLLINS: You know, back when the Yankees were in the World Series, I saw Pettitte, Clemens, and Reggie Jackson as well, at a restaurant. Went up and got their autographs for my little boy, so I still have that. We'll have to see what really comes out today a little bit later.
So many people watching this story. Very, very interesting.
CHERNOFF: Your little boy probably recognizes that some of these big stars, there are taints. They are tainted.
COLLINS: Yes. Well, we will continue to follow it very closely here at CNN.
Allan Chernoff, thank you.
HARRIS: So let's take a look at the steroids scandal whispers, as first emerged in the late 1990s as more and more hallowed records began to fall.
In September of 2002, baseball and its players reached an agreement on testing for steroids. A new stricter policy was implemented in 2005. The next spring, Major League Baseball announced Mitchell's investigation. Today's release of its findings comes after a pivotal year.
Barry Bonds became baseball's all-time homerun king, long rumored to be a steroids user. He was later indicted on charges of lying to a federal grand jury about steroid use.
The Mitchell report is scheduled for release at 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time.
Man, what a blockbuster this is going to be. You can see it live on our -- Heidi -- hi. You can see it live on our Web site, CNN.com.
COLLINS: Just fixing my hair.
HARRIS: Oh. It's lovely.
Or you can tune into our sister network, CNN Headline News.
COLLINS: We have all these monitors. And quite frankly, I just can't keep them straight. Just started in the business.
Also, we want to let you know about this because it was pretty fascinating. A little bit earlier in the NEWSROOM we had a chance to speak with a man who was a key link between steroids and the sports world. You know the name, Victor Conte.
COLLINS: He helped supply a number of athletes through his company you know, BALCO Labs. Today he's out of prison and says he wants to help clean up the sport, beginning with the Olympics.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
VICTOR CONTE, BALCO FOUNDER: I think there are some changes that can be made in terms of the reallocation of funds, and I talk specific steps that could be taken regarding testing more frequently the top 20 athletes in each event -- and I'm talking Olympic sport now -- as opposed to the mandate is to test the top 100 athletes two times a year. And my suggestion was to test the top 20 athletes 10 times a year.
And to do this specifically during the off-season, because this is when they do their strength training and use the anabolic steroids and develop the strength that serves them throughout the season. So it needs to be the higher-ranked athletes and more target testing during the off-season.
COLLINS: How well was that received?
CONTE: Very well received. He agrees with me completely.
Is it possible that -- there is a theory out there that says that there is drug testing in place. Of course, a lot of people say, look, the drug testing, specifically in baseball, is just an absolute joke. But is it possible that there is a testing in place that does test for what it needs to test for and people like the athletes, people like you, who have just gotten better at getting around that testing, finding the loopholes and cheating?
CONTE: Well, let me give you a specific example involving baseball. The WADA List, the World Anti-Doping Agency List, has 60 stimulants on that list. For whatever reason, baseball has chosen to put 30 of those stimulants on their list.
What that basically tells the players is that the front doors to the barn are closed, but the side doors and the back door are wide open. So if you choose to use steroids, don't use these 30, but it's OK to use these 30. And the same thing applies in the NFL. Their list has 10. So they tell the players, don't use these 10 stimulants. But it's open season, green light to use the other 50.
So this is a message that is given to them, and they don't tell them to use them, but they do inform that they are not being tested for, which is basically the same thing.
COLLINS: I think there's a lot of people who find it very interesting that you did it meet with Dick Pound, especially given your past with basically the creation of these designer drugs, specifically The Clear that a lot of people are familiar with that does not show up in this drug testing.
Tell me why people should see you as a credible source for trying to, as you said, bring back the integrity to sports?
CONTE: Well, I was a part of this problem for a long period of time. And, obviously, there was some consequences for my behavior and bad decisions. And so I did the crime and I did the time, and I've decided now that I would like to be a part of a collective team that can help to come up with solutions for the problems that have existed for decades. So...
COLLINS: Why should anybody believe you?
CONTE: Well, I think that the fact that Dick Pound, after our meeting yesterday, said, in his opinion, that I was credible. I think that it's ironic, I will admit, that since I was the person that was able to so easily evade the system in place, that I know exactly where the loopholes are, and by me being able to define those and provide the dimensions of those loopholes, collectively, we can put together the peg to plug those holes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COLLINS: You can see that entire interview on our Web site now, CNN.com. The baseball steroids story is already one of the most popular stories on our Web site this morning.
HARRIS: The Reverend Al Sharpton fires back. He says the feds digging into his finances comes as no surprise.
He calls it payback for his march against the Justice Department. In a news conference just a few moments ago, Sharpton criticized the way the feds acted. He says they contacted his associates in the early morning hours to issue subpoenas and create a media event.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AL SHARPTON, NATIONAL ACTION NETWORK: They're swooping down on aides and friends and associates of mine. But the reason I chose to have this conference is even I would have thought that they would not have handled a matter like this in such a disrespectful and insensitive way.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS: Well, the feds may be looking into Sharpton's 2004 presidential bid, his nonprofit civil rights group, and his for-profit businesses.
COLLINS: Health alert now to tell you about. An important childhood vaccine recalled. Find out what it means for your little one.
COLLINS: Democrats battle for Iowa. In about three hours, you'll have one last chance to see them debate before the caucuses. They're just three weeks away now.
Jessica Yellin, part of the best political team on television, live from Des Moines.
The Clinton and Obama campaigns, Jessica, have been skirmishing a lot lately, if you will. What's the latest fallout now?
JESSICA YELLIN, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Heidi, the latest is that a member of the Clinton campaign in New Hampshire made an attack on Barack Obama that stirred quite a bit of controversy. Clinton's New Hampshire co-chair, Billy Shaheen (ph), said to "The Washington Post" that Barack Obama's past admission of drug use could lead Republicans to suggest that Obama has been a drug dealer in the past, and that could hurt his electability.
Well, that sent shock waves through the Democratic circles after both candidates had said they'd try to stay away from personal attacks. Billy Shaheen (ph) has since apologized and said that he is not condoned to say that by the Clinton campaign.
This morning, CNN's producer, Ted Barrett, caught up with both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama on Capitol Hill and asked them about these comments. Senator Clinton said that she in no way condoned the comment and that it was not authorized or approved. She called it inappropriate.
But she was pressed further because she's known to run a very organized campaign -- whether it's believable that this could happen without her OK. Her response was to laugh and say, well, that's a myth, that her campaign is so perfectly organized, that "We have millions of supporters" and she has no tolerance for that kind of behavior.
Now, Barack Obama, for his part, said that it's evidence, in his view, that some people are a little bit worried about the polls. Clearly referencing the falling poll numbers for Senator Clinton. And he said again, as he has before, that he does not believe the American people are concerned "... about what I did when I was a teenager. They're concerned about what I'm going to do as a presidential candidate."
Now, why this all matters is because we're in a state here, Iowa, where these two people are in a dead heat, along with John Edwards. The voters here do not take well to personal attacks.
Hillary Clinton in particular has been criticized for seeming to go negative. So we're going to hear them debate this afternoon. It will be a real challenge for her to try to define her differences with Barack Obama without being accused of sounding negative, and this latest skirmish only increases the pressure on her -- Heidi.
COLLINS: Jessica, do you think this issue of drug use will come up during this debate?
YELLIN: You know, it's a big unknown. There was a lot of criticism of yesterday's debate that some of the hot-button issues weren't asked by the moderator. So it seems it's very topical today, and it would be a cause for a lot of interest. It would be a very hotly -- closely-watched exchange if it is asked -- Heidi.
COLLINS: Yes. A very, very tight, tight format that we saw yesterday. That's for sure.
All right. Jessica Yellin, thanks so much, live from Des Moines today.
See the Democratic debate from Iowa right here on CNN. The candidates will be facing off live 2:00 to 4:00 Eastern today on CNN, home of the best political team on television.
HARRIS: An anonymous donor's generosity.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When we opened it, I thought maybe just two or three, which we've had a couple times, but they just kept unfolding and unrolling. It was just wonderful.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS: A kettle full of cash for needily families.
HARRIS: A Salvation Army volunteer rings up a big donation. And we mean big. His kettle stuffed with cash thanks to a generous and anonymous donor.
The story from Mike Trim of affiliate WBRE in Pennsylvania.
MIKE TRIM, REPORTER, WBRE (voice over): It was a donation Salvation Army bell ringer Andrew Hunt has never seen.
ANDREW HUNT, SALVATION ARMY BELL RINGER: I was shocked. I didn't know what to say at first.
TRIM: On Monday, a man dropped $3,100 into this red kettle outside the Kmart here at the Shuylkill Mall. The $3,000 donation surprised many shoppers.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He dropped 30 $100 bills.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh my God.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, that's wonderful. Hey, I wish I was that rich.
TRIM: Back at the Pottsville Salvation Army headquarters, Captain Adam Hench is counting the money and counting his blessings.
CAPT. ADAM HENCH, POTTSVILLE SALVATION ARMY: When we opened it, I thought maybe just two or three, which we've had a couple times, but they just kept unfolding and unrolling. And it was just wonderful.
TRIM: Hench said the kettle campaign was slow-going until Monday's big boost. Now Hench would like to thank the person who donated.
HENCH: I'd love to meet him, shake his hand, and just say thank you, because this will go a long way.
TRIM: But the only thing we know about the kind-hearted donator is his vague description. Hunt says he was a tall older man with glasses. So we went on our own search for the man.
(on camera): You wouldn't be the mystery guy would you?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, I'm not. They said it was a tall, thin guy. I'm not very tall.
TRIM: Got you. Got you. A great story.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Whoever he was, though, God bless him.
TRIM (voice over): Hunt said he'd like to meet the man as well.
HUNT: Tell him thank you, God bless, and have a good holiday.
TRIM: Until then, Hunt will continue ringing the bell and thanking people for whatever they put in his kettle.
HARRIS: Man, how about that? The local Salvation Army says the donation definitely sets a record, and it will be a big boost to needy families during the holidays.
COLLINS: A driver on edge. His high wire act almost cost him his life. That's for sure. Incredible pictures. We'll tell you what happened.
HARRIS: Sinking solutions for a mental health crisis.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why isn't the VA sitting there when they get off the bus when they're coming home from Iraq? Don't make it so that the soldier has to go to the VA. Make the VA go to the soldier.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS: Helping vets before its too late in the newsroom.
Welcome back everyone to the CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Tony Harris.
COLLINS: Hi there everybody. I'm Heidi Collins.
Baseball stars and steroids. ESPN reporting an investigation will name future hall of famer Roger Clemens among others. The sports network is crediting an unnamed source. The official report 2 1/2 hours from now. CNN sports anchor Ray D'Alessio is here now with a little bit more on this story that has been sort of a whirlwind today. We knew this report was going to come out. We've been hearing some of the names now. What do you think the reaction from fans is going to be?
RAY D'ALESSIO, CNN SPORTS: I think it's going to be mixed reaction, Heidi. I think a lot of people are going to say, wow, are you kidding me? This guy was doing steroids? If so, why was he doing this? Because he had a hall of fame career going. Then again, some people might say to themselves, you know, I kind of figured that. You look at his stats this year, they jumped up. You know the home runs went from this to this. Or once steroid testing began the numbers fell drastically. So I think a lot of people are going to look at these names and go, yes, I get it.
COLLINS: Specifically, not confirmed here at CNN, but ESPN reporting Roger Clemens, Andy Pettitte.
D'ALESSIO: And this is not the first time that we've heard their names being mentioned for possible steroid use. The same person a couple years ago also had implicated them as well, which Pettitte and Clemens denied. So I'm sure it's the same thing that's going to happen again and again. A lot of people are like are you surprised by this? Yes and no. I mean, because with what's happened in sports over the past couple years, especially with baseball, with Barry Bonds chasing the record and all his alleged steroid use, and then Marion Jones coming out and saying, OK you know what, I used performance enhancers during the Olympics. Nothing should surprise anybody anymore.
Now the big thing is hey, how can we correct this problem. OK, what's done is done, we can't do anything about it now. Testing is in place. Part of the investigation in this report reportedly is going to include ways to improve testing, more year round testing. Take it away from the Major League Baseball, take it away from the players' union, get an outside source to do the testing. Increase the testing, increase the list of banned substances. Maybe that will help curb things and maybe people can just finally put all this behind us and we can have a normal sport.
COLLINS: And I hate to say that it's about finger pointing or blame because there are many people who would say hey, what about personal responsibility for the players? Up to them, ultimately, to decide whether or not to do this. Others will say what about the MLB. Others will say what about the testing policy and people like Victor Conte who we just spoke with from Balco Labs, who really became very good at finding ways to get around the loopholes, like developing the clear...
D'ALESSIO: Everybody is to blame.
COLLINS: Where is the responsibility though for the morality of it? What happens to the players when they take this stuff later in life?
D'ALESSIO: And that's the question. I mean, you see -- you hear horror stories from former NFL players who took steroids years ago and now they're paying the price with heart conditions...or
D'ALESSIO: Wrestlers as well. We've seen so many deaths because of -- allegedly for these guys using steroids. And that is going to be the question. Where do you place the blame? Do you place the blame on baseball itself? Did they push everything under the rug? Do you blame the players for taking steroids when there was so much competition and so much pressure to compete at a high level? You have a chance to make this amount of money if you reach this certain amount of home runs. You know what, you might think about it at least. You might think about it. So, the blame lies everywhere, from the owners to the players to the players' union who balked when they tried to implement a tougher steroid policy. So you can't just finger point at one person.
COLLINS: And the thing Victor Conte said, really quickly, too was interesting to me. They're talking about what the WADA, the World Anti-Doping Agency has on their list of stimulants, which is comprised of 60. But yet when you look at the baseball, MLB, they say well it's just these 30 that you need to stay away from. That's weird.
D'ALESSIO: I agree with him, expand that list, expand it out to 60. He brought up a very, very good point. OK, so you stopped the front door, like the big steroids things like that, now really concentrate on what he mostly was talking about was the amphetamines, the stimulants, and he referred to them as sort of a back door. Well we can't take this stuff anymore, but you know what we're going to turn to the stimulants that they're not looking for. So again expand that whole list.
COLLINS: They know though. Come on. Anyway, not to put you on the spot.
CNN headline news anchor Ray D'Alessio. Ray, thank you very much.
And just a quick reminder, that Mitchell Report, Senator George Mitchell's report is scheduled for release at 2:00 p.m. Eastern. You can see it live on our Web site, CNN.com, or tune into our sister network, CNN HEADLINE NEWS.
HARRIS: A vaccine alert to tell you about for those of you with young children. More than a million doses of the common childhood vaccine known as HIB being recalled. Drugmaker, Merck says they may be contaminated. The recall involves all America HIB vaccines shipped since April. This shot is actually given to babies as young as two months old. It protects against meningitis, pneumonia and other infections. If you're little one has received one of the shots recently, officials say you should check for any rashes and contact your child's doctor with any concerns. The recall is expected to lead to a vaccine shortage.
COLLINS: Crossing the crisis line. Families of troubled vets says the mental health system is broken, and they want it fixed. CNN's Barbara Starr reports.
MIKE BOWMAN, FATHER OF SPEC. TIM BOWMAN: Our veterans deserve better. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Emotion for Mike and Kim Bowman, parents of 23-year-old army specialist Tim Bowman, an Illinois national guardsman who completed a combat tour in Iraq, came home, and killed himself.
BOWMAN: As my family was preparing for 2005 Thanksgiving meal, our son, Timothy, was lying on the floor of my shop office slowly bleeding to death from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
STARR: The Bowmans say there is a crisis in mental health care for vets.
BOWMAN: When these veterans come home they find an under staffed, under funded, under equipped VA mental health system that has so many challenges to get through it, that many just give up trying.
STARR: The Department of Veterans Affairs say more than 100,000 of the 750,000 veterans back from Iraq and Afghanistan have come to the VA with a mental health condition, and that the VA is doing the best it can. Congressional members aren't convinced.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What are you doing about it?
DR. IRA KATZ, DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS: We're doing the --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, but it didn't reach these people.
KATZ: That's tragic.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, then find a more effective way. Don't keep telling us you're doing things when they're not effective.
STARR: Funding for mental health services is up. A new VA nationwide suicide prevention hotline has received 9,000 calls since July. But is it all enough to help troubled young vets?
BOWMAN: Why isn't the VA sitting there when they get off the bus when they're coming home from Iraq? Don't make it so that the soldier has to go to the VA. Make the VA go to the soldier.
STARR: The Bowmans want their son remembered as more than a statistic.
KIM BOWMAN, MOTHER OF SPEC. TIM BOWMAN: Tim will never be recognized for what he was, which is an excellent soldier. People always look at the suicide aspect of it.
T. BOWMAN: We don't blame anybody. There is -- if we blame anything, it would be the system.
STARR (on camera): Every suicide is a tragedy. So far more than 140 veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan have taken their lives. But the VA says the suicide rate among veterans is not that different than the rate in the civilian population.
Barbara Starr, CNN, the Pentagon.
HARRIS: Awaiting the Mitchell Report and ready to demand answers from baseball's top man. One lawmaker already threatening action. He'll tell us why in the newsroom.
HARRIS: You know, they don't call it Hotlanta for nothing. Atlanta now the bank robbery capital of the country. CNN's Rusty Dornin tells us why.
RUSTY DORNIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Some have made headlines. There was the Grandpa Bank Robber and, of course, the young women dubbed the "Barbie Bandits." But there were plenty more that didn't make the 6:00 news, and scenes like these push the city known by some as Hotlanta to the nation's No. 1 spot for bank robberies, 350 in 2007. A dubious distinction fueled, FBI officials say, partly by the population explosion here.
STEVEN EMMETT, FBI: We would attribute a lot of that to the growth and the fact that the banking industry has matched that growth with the increase in bank branches throughout the area.
DORNIN: In some places, just about every street corner sports a financial institution. According to the Atlanta Business Chronicle, the city has more banks in the metro area than the entire state of North Carolina. FBI officials say it's also part of an upward climb nationally in violent crime, and during the holidays, robberies spike. Some speculate all the economic stress this time of year may just push someone to don sunglasses, hat, and gloves and play Bonnie and Clyde. But what most often drives a bank robber is drug addiction, and that often makes for suspicious behavior.
EMMETT: He's either nervous because of about what he's about to do or nervous because of the drug addiction. Those things might stand out to the observant bank employee. Not only what he's wearing, but his actions.
DORNIN: Banking officials told CNN the whole idea is not to make a bad situation worse. And employees are urged to get the robber out of the bank as soon as possible for the safety of everyone inside the bank. The FBI has warned banks nationwide to be vigilant this time of year and be on the lookout for customers dressed to rob.
Rusty Dornin, CNN, Atlanta.
COLLINS: Lots of worries on Wall Street these days, but that won't prevent some executives from raking in a lot of cash. Not really a new story. Susan Lisovicz is at the New York Stock Exchange now to tell us whose bonus is biggest.
I'm not sure I really want to know this, Susan.
COLLINS: Yes, the good news is you know, we haven't seen our CNN bonus yet. I'm sure that it's ...
SUSAN LISOVICZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right.
COLLINS: ...right up there.
LISOVICZ: That's right. I mean, it was ...
HARRIS: You just canceled yours out by mentioning it, Heidi. Way to go.
LISOVICZ: Remember the Kroger's, how about the Kroger's coupon? I was (INAUDIBLE) to that.
COLLINS: I didn't say that. That was all Susan, Jim.
HARRIS: Oh, man.
COLLINS: It's Jim Walton, line three. He'll be calling here in a moment.
HARRIS: I'm sure I'm going to get swept up in this cat firestorm (ph) you've started.
COLLINS: Thank you, Susan.
LISOVICZ: Your welcome.
COLLINS: We'll talk later.
HARRIS: All right, it leads today's -- thanks, Heidi. Baby needs new shoes. It leads today's Golden Globe nominations.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JAMES MCAVOY, ACTOR: Let me help with that.
KEIRA KNIGHTLEY, ACTRESS: No, I'm all right, thanks.
MCAVOY: I'll take the flowers.
KNIGHTLEY: I'm all right!
MCAVOY: I'll take the flowers.
KNIGHTLEY: I'm all right!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HARRIS: Love is a battlefield in "Atonement."
HARRIS: "YOUR WORLD TODAY" coming up in about 10 minutes at the top of the hour. Hala Gorani standing by with a preview.
Hala, good morning.
HALA GORANI, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning to you, Tony and Heidi.
We will continue right here on CNN International and CNN to follow the Mitchell Report due out in just about two hours, and expected to name and shame several top baseball players, among a group of players that may have used performance-enhancing drugs to better their game. What will the impact be on the game, the players, the league, and the fans? There are international fans all over the world, not just in Japan.
Also, we're going to be looking at the visit of Moammar Ghadaffi, the leader of Libya, of course, to France, long linked to international terrorist attacks. Some are calling his visit to Paris a farce. He even pitched a tent across the street from the presidential palace, where he conducted business. We'll be taking you live to the French capital.
Also, the Golden Globes. "Atonement" leading the way, adapted from that Ian Mcewan novel, of course -- leading the way with seven nominations. Will the Globes happen though is the big question with the writer's strike? And also, I have to say on a personal note, one of my favorite movies of 2007, "Superbad," not nominated for best comedy. HARRIS: Did you buy the -- the DVD is out.
GORANI: I saw it in the movie theater. Trust me, very disappointing.
HARRIS: It's supposed to be hilarious. I haven't seen it. Maybe it's a good little holiday movie.
GORANI: I am disappointed. I'm just profoundly, profoundly rattled.
HARRIS: All right, Hala, great to see you. Top of the hour?
GORANI: See you at the top of the hour.
HARRIS: Beautiful. Thank you.
One Congressman wants baseball's commissioner called on the carpet if the report turns up new or damning information. We're talking about the Mitchell Report on steroids use and abuse in Major League Baseball. Representative Elijah Cummings sits on the Committee of Oversight and Government Reform.
He joins us from the Capitol. Good to see you as always...
REP. ELIJAH CUMMINGS (D), MARYLAND: Good to see you, also.
HARRIS: ... there on Capitol Hill.
You were a part of these hearings back in 2005, and you were tough on these guys. You knew, I think, or had a notion at the time, that these players weren't being as forthcoming as they might have been. So I'm wondering what you're thinking today on the eve just hours away from this report in which we're getting word that as many as 80 players will be named.
CUMMINGS: And I think there will probably be more at some point or another. It's interesting that we already are hearing that the Mitchell Report is going to talk about testing and future recommendations. So what that tells me is that there are probably some folks that have not been caught up in the report because there possibly were some testing deficiencies, and he wants that to be given to an independent agency, and I think that's probably very smart.
But, no, back then we had an idea that there were major problems, but probably not to the extent that Senator Mitchell is going to report out today.
HARRIS: I'm just curious as we look at the hearings -- and there is Mark McGwire right there -- what do you want to happen? How do we move forward with this?
CUMMINGS: One of the things that brought on this report was when Congress stepped in and said we wanted integrity in the game, and so then Selig, Bud Selig, then appointed Senator Mitchell. And I thought, by the way, that was a great choice. I believe in the senator tremendously.
And so but now we've got to remember why we started the investigations here in Congress. It was mainly because children, young athletes, were trying to emulate their role models, and so that problem still remains, but we've got to look at this report and try to figure out everything that Senator Mitchell is recommending.
Also, look at the things that maybe he was not able to get to, some questions that still may be out there. Bring Bud Selig before the Congress. Also, we're going to have to have the players' union representatives come in too, because I think they have some responsibility in all of this, too, and find out what they're going to do from here, and then if it does not seem pleasing to our ears, then we may have to take some action.
HARRIS: We cheat. The bottom line on this, Major League Baseball players cheat. There are examples of cheating throughout this culture, throughout this society. The conclusion here is we cheat, and here's another example.
CUMMINGS: You're absolutely right, and the question is, is what message does that send to our children? And I think baseball fans have got to get to a point where they're very upset about this, too. People spend their hard-earned money to take their kids to a game, and by the way, baseball games are expensive, and to sit there and watch people -- grownups, cheat in front of them, it makes absolutely no sense.
And by the way, in our hearings that led up to this Senator Mitchell's investigation, we had parents to come in and talk about how their children are emulating their heroes, had actually died from the use of steroids and were greatly harmed. And steroids can do a lot of damage, particularly to a young body. And so we've also seen the increase of steroids increase tremendously...
HARRIS: So are you promising us you're not going to lose focus on the reason that you started down this road in the first place? Because we're about out of time.
CUMMINGS: I have to say our children are the living messages we send to a future we will never see. I want to make sure that they get to that future.
HARRIS: Congressman Cummings, great, as always, to see you. Thanks for your time this morning.
CUMMINGS: Good seeing you.
COLLINS: Making the A list. Hollywood Golden Globe nominations are out. Who's who in movies and TV?
HARRIS: "YOUR WORLD TODAY" is next with news not only happening across the globe, but news from the Golden Globes. I'm Tony Harris.
COLLINS: That was very clever.
I'm Heidi Collins. Have a great day, everybody.
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