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Defense Rests in Casey Anthony Trial; Alleged Stowaway Trips up TSA; After U.S. Troops Leave; Flogging or Prison
Aired June 30, 2011 - 14:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: So the defense, again, resting its case. Prosecutors are preparing now for their rebuttal witnesses before their closing arguments. Not yet in the hands of the jury just yet, but we are hearing that they could be deliberating as early as the end of this week, maybe even into the weekend.
The defense called Anthony's family back to the stand before all these latest developments, and then brought in a key witness today, George Anthony's alleged mistress, who they hope delivered a bombshell.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KRYSTAL HOLLOWAY, ALLEGES AFFAIR WITH GEORGE ANTHONY: I did have an affair with George.
He said it was an accident that snowballed out of control.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WHITFIELD: So let's bring in Holly Hughes, who is a criminal defense attorney and former prosecutor.
You've been following this trial very closely. We're going to talk about George's alleged mistress and what she said in a moment, but, first, let's talk about Casey Anthony saying no, will not take the stand.
HOLLY HUGHES, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Wow. This is huge.
What this does, Fredricka, is this puts the defense at a disadvantage, because they stood up in their opening and they promised that jury -- Jose Baez -- this was a simple accident. The baby drowned in the pool. George knew all about it, and Casey acted this way.
WHITFIELD: None of the defense witnesses have explained that.
HUGHES: No one. There is no evidence. And one of the jury charges that the judge is going to read to them about the law is, hey, what the lawyers say is not evidence. Opening is not evidence. Closing is not evidence.
The questions that the lawyers ask are not evidence. The only thing that's evidence is what the people sitting in the witness box testified to. That's the only thing you can consider. It's not there.
WHITFIELD: But the burden of proof is on the prosecution.
HUGHES: It is.
WHITFIELD: And has the prosecution done a good job of painting a picture of all of the events, what may or may not have happened? Did they eliminate certain things? Do they include certain theories about what happened to Caylee?
HUGHES: Absolutely. What we have here is a circumstantial evidence case.
Basically, there's two different kinds of evidence. You've got circumstantial evidence and direct evidence.
Direct evidence is somebody's videotaping, OK? Here you go, jury. This is the crime on film, all right?
What we have is nobody saw what happened to this little girl when she went missing. But the prosecution has taken and woven together a picture, and when you look at that picture as a whole, you really can only arrive at the one conclusion, that Casey Anthony is guilty.
She was the last one seen with the child. All of these prior chloroform searches -- and I think what we're going to see in rebuttal is the prosecution proving that Cindy lied. She wasn't really the one --
WHITFIELD: The mother.
HUGHES: -- yes. Cindy said, I did the chloroform searches. I don't think that's going to bear out.
WHITFIELD: The rebuttal witnesses could be in the form of somebody at Cindy Anthony's workplace to try to corroborate whether she was at home at the time that this search for the chlorophyll, chloroform took place at home?
HUGHES: That's exactly what's happening. And as a matter of fact, we know the jury is not in the room, and you and I have been watching the live pictures. We know they are sort of having a little tiff with the judge right now.
Cheney Mason has just made a motion to have Linda Drane Burdick and the state sanctioned because they are saying discovery violations. She gave him -- Linda Drane Burdick, the prosecutor, gave Cheney Mason these records showing that there was phone activity on Cindy Anthony's phone at work at the time that she claims to have been home. And so he says, well, judge, we should have gotten these records way back. Cindy said in her deposition that she did these searches. So they are fighting.
He wants them to be held in violation of that discovery order. So the defense is really kicking and screaming. They don't want this in front of the jury, and I don't blame them, because they've got nothing. And now they're going to get beat up even more and prove that when they called Cindy to the stand, she lied and claimed this chloroform searches as her own. It's not looking good.
WHITFIELD: Wow. This is interesting.
So, are you seeing that -- of course, after their rebuttal witnesses, immediately there are going to be closing arguments --
WHITFIELD: -- something that will be carried out straight into the weekend. Perhaps just blow right through the Fourth of July holiday?
HUGHES: Absolutely. Judge Perry has already indicated that when the closing arguments are over -- and they're either going to happen tomorrow or Saturday -- we're that close. He asked the prosecutor, Linda Drane Burdick, how much rebuttal? She says, less than a day, Judge.
So we know we're going to hear those closing arguments. And the judge has said, I'm going to put the option before the jury. Do they want to start deliberating Sunday? Do they just want to dive into this, work on Sunday, work on Monday, and just push through? Because they are sequestered.
These poor folks, not only do they have a very difficult task ahead, but they have been away from their families for 31 days. And you know what, Fred? Thirty-one days, that's a number we have heard over and over and over in this case.
Thirty-one days before Cindy Anthony found out for sure that little girl was missing, called and reported it. Thirty days where Casey Anthony partied like a rock star and didn't tell anybody her baby was missing. And the defense rests their case on the 31st day.
WHITFIELD: Wow, very significant here.
WHITFIELD: Among the witnesses the defense called, this alleged mistress. Why is that considered a bombshell testimony today?
HUGHES: What the defense is trying to do is prove that George Anthony is a big, fat liar. That's essentially what they want to be able to argue to the jury in closing.
So when George took the stand and said, I did not have a romantic, intimate affair with this woman, there was no relationship, she says something different. So they put her on after George denies it.
She says there was an affair, he sent me these text messages. These are all the things he said to me.
And she's really critical, because she claims that George made a statement to her while the baby was still missing, before the bones were found, this was an accident that snowballed out of control. And the defense wants to spin that like George knew for sure this was an accident.
The prosecution was able to show that in a prior statement you gave to law enforcement, number one, you denied the affair. You said there wasn't one.
And then, secondly, what you told the police George actually said was it must have been an accident that got out of control, she tried to cover it up. "She," meaning Casey. Casey tried to cover it up.
WHITFIELD: You have to wonder if the attorneys on both side really do run the risk of confusing the jurors, because this is so sordid. There is no real straight line here. And even though there's this circumstantial evidence, you're leaving an awful lot of great responsibility up to the jury to try to make sense of all of this, and it seems as though this is risky on both ends.
HUGHES: Well, it's not risky for the defense, because the defense wants to confuse the jury, OK? They want them discombobulated.
They don't want them listening to the state's evidence and saying yes, it's very linear and it's laid out, and the only conclusion I can reach is she's guilty, dang it. You know?
They want them confused. All right? It only takes one to hang, so if they can even hang this at this point in time, they are happy with that. So that wouldn't be a bad thing for the defense.
The prosecution, because they have the burden of proof, they're the ones who have to bring it. You know?
They've got to come to the table with that evidence. This is a case that is going to be tied up in closing argument, and what we're going to see is a master litigator standing up there and stitching --
WHITFIELD: How to put the pieces together.
HUGHES: -- all these pieces back together now that the defense has attempted to scatter them through cross-examinations, through all of that, through direct of their own witnesses. The prosecutor -- and I'm betting it's going to be Jeff Ashton -- that's going to be quite the show. We have to see that and the viewers have to stay tuned in to CNN for that.
And what we're going to see is we're going to see Jeff Ashton, who is a master in the courtroom. And he's going to say, OK now, you all just heard a bunch of stuff that quite frankly doesn't matter. Let me tell you what does matter. And he's going to begin to pull back into focus for that jury what he believes proves beyond a reasonable doubt Casey Anthony is guilty.
WHITFIELD: We will see how soon that happens. Again, the defense resting today. There may be rebuttal witnesses for the prosecution. And then, of course, those closing arguments. And we'll see what kind of theater we see in that.
Holly Hughes, thanks so much. Appreciate it.
HUGHES: Thank you so much, Fred.
WHITFIELD: All right. Our "Sound Effect" is a pat on the back from a president of the United States. This is the last day on the job for U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates, and President Obama wouldn't let him go without some fanfare.
So Mr. Obama is the eighth president Gates has worked for at the Pentagon, the CIA, the National Security Council and, of course, the White House. So you may think a guy like that may be hard to surprise. Well, President Obama did surprise him.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I can think of no better way to express the gratitude of the nation for Bob Gates than with a very special recognition.
Bob, this is not in the program, but I would ask you to please stand.
As president, the highest honor that I can bestow on a civilian is the Presidential Medal of Freedom. It speaks to the values we cherish as a people and the ideals we strive for as a nation. And today it is my great privilege to present the presidential Medal of Freedom to America's 22nd Secretary of Defense, Robert M. Gates.
ROBERT GATES, DEFENSE SECRETARY: I'm deeply honored and moved by your presentation of this award. It is a big surprise, but we should have known a couple of months ago you've gotten pretty good at this covert ops stuff.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WHITFIELD: A little shaken up there, a little teary-eyed. Gates will be succeeded tomorrow by outgoing CIA chief Leon Panetta.
All right. No recess for the U.S. Senate next week. They are canceling the July 4th week break this year to work on legislation to raise the U.S. debt ceiling and cut the deficit.
Lawmakers must raise the nation's $14.3 trillion borrowing limit by August 2nd, or risk running out of money to pay the nation's bills. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell made a public invitation to President Obama to come on over to the Capitol.
Senators will take Monday, July 4th off, but return to work on Tuesday the 5th. (NEWSBREAK)
WHITFIELD: All right. Checkpoints and pat-downs, body scans and bag inspections, all aimed at making sure airlines and Homeland Security know exactly who is getting on airplanes and keeping potential evil-doers off. So how did a man with no valid I.D. and someone else's boarding pass fly across the country last Friday?
The Nigerian national was arrested five days after his Virgin America flight from JFK to LAX when he tried to get on a Delta flight to Atlanta. Again, he allegedly carried a bogus boarding pass, and authorities say they found several others in his luggage.
The Transportation Security Administration says it can't say much because the FBI is investigating, but a spokesman did say this -- saying, "Every passenger that passes through security checkpoints is subject to many layers of security, including thorough physical screening at the checkpoint. TSA's review of this matter indicates that the passenger went through screening. It is important to note that this passenger was subject to the same physical screening at the checkpoint as other passengers."
At least for now, the man is charged only with being a stowaway. Authorities say there are no indications for now of terrorism.
I spoke last hour with Erroll Southers. He's a former airport security chief in L.A. and former nominee to head the TSA. He is now a consultant and adjunct professor at USC. I asked him whether he sees this as a problem with the system.
ERROLL SOUTHERS, SECURITY CONSULTANT: I see a huge problem within the system, because the system is now depending on human beings to vet other human beings without the capabilities of technology enhancing that performance.
WHITFIELD: And so you're also an advocate of this trusted traveler system. Explain what that is and how that might have made an impact, if it were instituted here.
SOUTHERS: Well, I'm fortunate to be working with a couple of other nations that are using technology to enhance the skill sets to vet human beings. We are working on a global secure traveler system that is able to use biometrics, and it's able to have people go through the system so that we know that be it an iris scan, palm print, a smart passport, and perhaps even a pin number, so that we know the person holding the boarding pass is the individual.
What this does for us now is it gives those scarce resources in staffing. They can focus on people that aren't in the system, and that's where the risk is greater. So we're reducing the risk. But what happened at the two airports here, where a person is looking at an identification and looking at a boarding pass, and they don't match, is inexcusable.
WHITFIELD: The feds say the suspect is a U.S. citizen 24 years old. He is due to appear in federal court tomorrow.
A well-known political commentator is suspended for comments that he made about the United States president. We'll tell you what he said, next.
WHITFIELD: All right. New video into CNN of New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez taking an aerial tour of the wildfires near Los Alamos.
You can see clouds of smoke coming through the tree line there. The fire has burned nearly 93,000 acres and at this point is only about three percent contained.
So, how will the weather be affecting the firefighters' efforts?
WHITFIELD: A look at our top stories right now at this hour.
MSNBC today suspended political analyst Mark Halperin after he used a four-letter word that starts with the letter "D" to describe President Obama.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MIKA BRZEZINSKI, "MORNING JOE": Oh --
JOE SCARBOROUGH, "MORNING JOE": Oh, my God.
Delay that. Delay that.
What are you doing?
MARK HALPERIN, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST: I think the president --
SCARBOROUGH: I can't believe -- I was joking! Don't do that!
Did we delay that?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
WHITFIELD: Halperin apologized on the air to viewers and to President Obama for his remarks. It happened on the "Morning Joe" program.
Halperin used the insult when criticizing President Obama for attacking Republican lawmakers during a news conference yesterday. Halperin is an editor-at-large for "TIME" magazine, a CNN sister publication. All right. Take a look at this.
We told you that Prince William and Princess Kate would be making their way from the U.K. to Canada, and there they are. New pictures of them arriving there. Their first stop, Ottawa, Canada.
They are going to be on a nine-day tour, looking ever so lovely there. This is their first official abroad trip together, and we'll have much more on their trip coming up in our "Globe Trekking" segment.
And Greece's parliament today passed a law needed to implement a crucial austerity package. The move was demanded by the European Union and International Monetary Fund and opens the way for more loans from those two groups. The austerity package, which includes tax hikes and pay cuts, among other measures, has triggered strikes and violent protests in Athens and across the country.
All right. We all deal with them, and very few of us understand them or even like them. Richard Quest and Ali Velshi tackle airline fees in this week's "Q&A," next.
ALI VELSHI, CNN ANCHOR: "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS," and so do I.
We're here together in the CNN NEWSROOM around the world.
RICHARD QUEST, HOST, "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS": Good day to you, Mr. Velshi.
Each Thursday, Ali and I are coming to you around the world, and our issues that we discuss are business, innovation, and today travel. Nothing is off limits.
So we're talking about airlines and the huge amount of money they are taking and making, and taking from you and me on fees.
VELSHI: Here in the U.S., we've just heard $5.7 billion last year, some of it coming from extra bag fees, foods, charging for pets, almost anything that they could think of to make some money off of that. More than $2 billion just from change and cancellation fees.
So the question, Richard, for our viewers: Is flying a good deal, or are we being taken for a ride?
Richard, you have more frequent flyer miles than I do, so, please, go first. You've got 60 seconds.
QUEST: It sounds like such a good idea -- pay for what you use and leave the rest behind. And indeed, when it started, the idea of paying for baggage or for speedy boarding or for those little extra perks like entertainment and food on board did actually work. But it wasn't long before the fees went up, and so did the fares.
The latest report from American Express shows year on year, fares are up by 10 percent, and now back to pre-recession levels. The fares go up, the fees go up, and some airlines here in Europe come up with imaginative ways, things like booking confirmation fee, legal protection fee, or credit card and debit card fees.
My rule is simple: if it is something that can be avoided like baggage, meals or entertainment, all fair and good. But if it's anything else, it should be included in the price. I'm not being taken for a ride by anyone.
VELSHI: Richard, let me take a go at this, all right?
It is easy to rip on the airlines -- the delays, the cancellations, and all those annoying fees you just listed. It seems like any day now, in Europe you could be paying to use the loo. But here's where it gets drowned out by all of our complaining.
Flying is a remarkably good deal. You compared it to pre- recession levels 15 years ago. Here in the U.S., the average domestic airfare was $288 15 years ago. Last year, even adjusting for inflation, it was $236, 50 bucks cheaper than it was 15 years ago, Richard.
Now, in exchange for those low fees, we've had to suffer some other things. The truth about airlines -- Richard, you know this -- they need the money.
In the last decade in the U.S., the industry had only three profitable years -- count them, three. It slashed 160,000 jobs. And look at this fuel price. One cent in a gallon of jet fuel costs them $175 million a year.
So, while paying for something that used to be free, like checking a bag is painful, let's face it, Richard, without all that nickel-and-diming, they would have to raise their fares.
VELSHI: A la carte pricing is fair. I'm all for it.
QUEST: I'm all for it. But since when did you become an apologist for the industry?
VELSHI: I just want the planes to keep flying.
QUEST: "The Voice"?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hello, gentlemen. Time for takeoff. Let's jump right in to question number one.
You're both frequent flyers, so this one should be fairly easy.
According to Luggage Source, what is the usual maximum weight allowed for a carry-on bag? Is it A, 20 pounds; B, 30 pounds; C, 40 pounds; or, D, 50 pounds?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ali?
VELSHI: Richard wouldn't know the answer to this because he's all fancy and he doesn't have to pay for luggage. It's 50 pounds. D.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Incorrect.
QUEST: The maximum weight allowed for carry-on is 20 pounds.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, sir.
VELSHI: Thirty pounds.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Incorrect again.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Took you long enough.
The answer is usually 40 pounds, but some airlines cap it as low as 26 pounds.
On to the next one. Now, we're on the plane. According to worksalaries.org, which country has the highest paid airline pilots?
Is it (a), Germany, (b), Taiwan, (c), Kuwait, or, (d), the United States?
VELSHI: Trick question, Richard.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Richard?
QUEST: It is a trick question, and I'm for Germany.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That is correct. Germany is tops, followed by Taiwan. Russian pilots, by the way, rank near the bottom, making 10 times less than their German counterparts.
Question number three. Let's pick up the pace, Ali.
We're in our first class seats waiting for foie gras. Back in coach, they are praying for peanuts. So, what country produces the most peanuts?
Is it (a), China, (b), India, (c), the United States or, (d), Nigeria? Ali?
VELSHI: Peanuts are a hot climate thing. I would say India.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Incorrect.
QUEST: I would say Nigeria.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Incorrect again. Redeem yourself, Ali.
VELSHI: The United States.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wrong again.
VELSHI: This thing is rigged.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That is correct. China produces the most, but the majority of their peanuts aren't eaten. They are made into oils or other things.
The U.S. produces most peanuts for actual consumption.
So, Richard, you win 3-0.
Ali, I expect better out of you next week.
QUEST: Hey, Ali.
VELSHI: I'll be ready.
QUEST: The point about that is, I -- I'm going to make a hostage to fortune here. I want to know the other things that peanuts are made into. That will do it.
VELSHI: That's right. Edible peanuts versus what?
QUEST: Remember, we're here each week Thursdays on "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS," 1900, in the London time zone.
VELSHI: And in the CNN NEWSROOM, 2:00 p.m. Eastern, keep the topics coming on our blogs at CNN.com/QMB, CNN.com/Ali. Tell us each week what you want to see us talk about.
Richard, have a good week.
QUEST: Have a good week.
WHITFIELD: All right. Thirty-four minutes after the hour now. Let's update you on some of the news that you missed.
Investigators may have charged the man with being a stowaway after he allegedly took a flight from New York to Los Angeles without the proper boarding place. According to the FBI affidavit, the airline did not discover that he was on board until the flight had already taken off. He was questioned when he landed but not arrested until he returned to LAX a few days later and tried to board a different flight, this time on the way to Atlanta with an expired boarding pass -- and, by the way, it wasn't in his name.
A law enforcement official told CNN there is nothing at this point to indicate that terrorism is involved.
And take a look right now. Live pictures of the courtroom in Orlando in the Casey Anthony murder trial. The defense now rested today without calling her to the witness stand. Casey informed the judge of her decision not to testify in her own defense after the lunch break.
Jurors will now hear testimony from rebuttal witnesses offered by the prosecution. Closing arguments could be heard soon.
And a big sendoff today for U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates. In his last full day on the job, Gates was honored with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America's highest civilian honor. Gates is stepping down after four decades of public service. He is succeeded by outgoing CIA Director Leon Panetta. And taking Panetta's place at the CIA will be General David Petraeus, who will -- who was just overwhelmingly confirmed rather by the U.S. Senate.
OK. William and Kate crossing the pond for their first overseas trip as newlyweds. The latest from Ottawa, Canada.
Plus, the flap over a "Newsweek" magazine cover showing Kate side by side with a rather aged Princess Diana, coming up right after this.
WHITFIELD: On to Afghanistan, a bold and deadly attack on a major hotel in the heart of the capital of Kabul. Tuesday's attack on the Intercontinental Hotel killed some 22 people, including nine suicide bombers, and it's raising even more questions about the ability of Afghan forces to fight the Taliban and other militants once all U.S. forces are pulled out of that country.
So, here to talk with us now, CNN International's John Vause.
So, this is very interesting because this, too, might be very telling about how this country might be able to manage security once the troops move out.
JOHN VAUSE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: In three years, essentially, 2014, when not just U.S. troops are pulled out , but NATO troops are gone as well. That's the big date. That's when the Afghan national security forces have to stand up for themselves.
A lot of people looking at this attack at this hotel in Kabul, the Intercontinental, saying, hey, look, they're not ready. Obviously, there are these reports that a lot of Afghan police guys just didn't fire their weapons, that they ran away, and that they -- they were simply overwhelmed by the Taliban or the al Qaeda or whoever was responsible for this attack.
The reality is, though, that these insurgents are now working to a timetable, three years, and something like this attack at this Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul was always going to happen. President Obama said you can expect another attack like this. It's not going to change the drawdown. The troops are still coming out.
Now, the concern is, and we've heard this from the outgoing U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates, he said last time the Americans left Afghanistan too soon was back in the 1980s when we were supporting the mujahidin against the Soviet Union and that ultimately led to 9/11. That's a concern.
The other argument, though, is, hey, look, you know, it's easy to run away when you know you've got 140,000 NATO troops backing you up, and that's kind of what happened at the Intercontinental on Tuesday.
Come 2014, and after that, when they got to stand up and fight, and they had no other choice -- well, then they might just have to do it. Similar to what's happening in Iraq right now.
And the security of this hotel, I've stayed there, you know, it is very secure, but it's still in a very dangerous part of the world. And the security -- well, it's kind of very Afghan. You know, they search you but they don't search you properly. You walk through the metal detector and set off the alarm.
WHITFIELD: Yes, this was not secured by NATO or ISAF anyway.
WHITFIELD: So, it could have happened at any time because this was an attractive location.
WHITFIELD: It's supposed a target area because a lot of dignitaries and journalists, been there as well, covering stories --
WHITFIELD: -- go there.
VAUSE: Most of the journalists and most of the NGOs, they all stay at the Serena Hotel, which is a much more secure location than the Intercontinental Hotel. This one is sort of more about, you know, a few journalists will go there if they are meeting governors or high- ranking officials.
VAUSE: You know, what we heard on Tuesday night, there was a wedding party under way. There was another gathering as well. It's for the locals. And this is essentially Afghans attacking other Afghans.
And the security, they say it's good, but it's not that good.
WHITFIELD: Quite porous.
OK. Well, let's move on to Libya now. And now, some criticism that France is getting their, perhaps they are supplying weaponry to the rebels there in Libya. Is that appropriate? Is it right? Is it violating any rules set by NATO?
VAUSE: Well, again, it comes back --
WHITFIELD: This concerted effort?
VAUSE: It comes back to who you talk to. Now, this story came out of the (INAUDIBLE) newspaper, and it turns out that earlier this month, the French decided to airdrop some anti-tank weapons, as well as some assault rifles, other missiles, rocket launchers, into a mountainous region southwest of Tripoli.
VAUSE: And what happened is that that really turned a battle for the opposition. There was a bit of a stalemate there. No one really knew what happened because suddenly the opposition fighters got the upper hand.
Now, we know what happened. They got a lot of help from the French.
Now, NATO has made it clear they had nothing to do with this. The French are saying, hey, we had every right to do this because under U.N. Resolution 1973, which authorized actions, we can take any action necessary to protect civilians.
The problem, though, is there's an arms embargo on all of Libya. It's directed at Gadhafi, but it's for all of Libya. And the concern here is that this is a country already which is already awash in weapons.
VAUSE: And we're hearing now from the Spanish, when the interior minister, that a lot of weapons in Libya, and ending up in the hands of the al Qaeda affiliates, in the northern part of Africa. So, that's why there's a concern.
WHITFIELD: Getting a little to murky.
WHITFIELD: OK. Let's kind of end it on a little bit of a happy note with the newlywed, British royal couple, making its way to Canada for this nine-day tour of Canada.
VAUSE: God love them.
VAUSE: I mean, they are a nice looking couple, aren't they? I mean, they've just arrived a short time ago. And this is their first trip away as the duke and duchess of Canterbury. And, of course, a lot of comparisons are now being made to the trip that Charles and Diana made back in 1983.
Do you know that Princess Diana was only 22 at the time when --
WHITFIELD: I think people forget that, that she was so young.
VAUSE: -- when she made the first trip.
We see these pictures now. And, obviously, Kate, very stylish, a good-looking couple, and the one thing about Kate is that, you know, she's gorgeous looking, but she also seems to be very accessible. She has that Diana quality.
And Diana had a lot of people talking on this trip to Canada back in 1993, or was it 1981, but whenever it was, because she actually knelt down and spoke with the kids and picked a few things up.
WHITFIELD: There are lots of comparisons.
VAUSE: Yes. And we have that "Newsweek" magazine as well.
WHITFIELD: Yes, and it kind of makes a few comparisons, too, in a way that kind of a lot of folks are feeling a little unsettled.
VAUSE: Personally, I find it creepy.
VAUSE: You know, we look at this cover here. We can see Diana digitally enhanced, she looks a bit older, still looks great. She's very slim.
WHITFIELD: They're walking side by side.
VAUSE: Yes. And if you read the context of the magazine, this has got a few people upset, they talk about Diana using Botox, that she's been twice divorced. She's got 10 million Twitter followers.
And a lot of people just think -- let the poor woman rest.
WHITFIELD: Oh, boy.
All right. John Vause, thanks so much. Appreciate it.
VAUSE: A pleasure.
WHITFIED: Appreciate it.
OK. So, here's a question for you. What are the most expensive colleges in America? Is your alma mater on the list? We'll break it down two minutes from now.
WHITFIELD: All right. So, these days, you can comparison shop with just about everything online -- cars, flights and insurance. But there's one big holdout, colleges.
Well, that all changes today because of this new government Web site, collegecosts.ed.gov. It's the Department of Education's interactive list of the country's most and least expensive colleges.
So, how does it work? Well, let's just say that you want to search for the most expensive public four-year college. You choose the tab and you select the highest college and choose it right there. And then you're going to see a list of al the universities right there and generate your search and then you have this.
Perhaps, you want to find out more about Pennsylvania State University. You see right there, tuition is $14,000. But you see the national average is $6,000. So, let's get a little bit more information on that, a bit more on that university.
And then you perhaps want to learn a little bit more about a private university. You can follow the tabs, same way. Find out exactly what the options are for a public university, four-year, privates, et cetera -- just about all the information you need about campus living except where to get the best pizza for late-night study sessions, et cetera.
So, you can do the same search for both public, private colleges. If you are curious, the most expensive private college is Bates, and that's at $51,300. That's the tuition, pretty sizable there.
The report also lists the top 5 percent of schools with the sharpest increases over three-year periods for several categories. Northern New Mexico College had a 51 percent increase, followed by Florida State and San Diego State University.
By law, these offenders are now required to submit records to the government explaining why costs have gone up so dramatically and how they plan to address rising prices.
There's a lot to look at. So, you want to check this website out for yourself and learn a little more about the colleges that are available for your kids.
So, an author says that we should give criminals a choice of flogging in lieu of prison sentences, and he joins our Stream Team today after the break.
WHITFIELD: All right. Live pictures right now of Prince William and Princess Catherine there. They are at a wreath-laying ceremony at the National War Memorial. They are in Ottawa.
They just arrived maybe just under an hour or so. Again, embarking on their nine-day tour of Canada. And this ceremonial duty taking place right now. This is their first out-of-country visit together as a married couple.
Shall we listen in a moment?
All right. The royal couple there in their visit to Canada over the next nine days. We'll keep you posted on their travels.
All right. Here's a question being asked. To flog someone is to beat them with a whip, strap or cane as a form of punishment. Is it right?
Well, a new book is raising a few eyebrows because it advocates flogging as an alternative to a traditional prison sentence. The idea is to give all but the most dangerous convicts a choice, imprisonment or two lashes for every year of the sentence.
And don't think that Americans don't have the appetite for this. We tend to associate flogging with nations like Singapore and Malaysia. But as recently as 1952, the state of Delaware administered 20 lashes to a convicted burglar.
And remember Michael Fay, the American teenager who was flogged after being convicted of spray painting cars in Singapore?
Well, according to the author of the book advocating flogging, a 1994 newspaper poll was taken in Ohio which is where Fay's father lived. And the author says that respondents supported the punishment by a two-to-one margin.
So, the question for today's Stream Team is this: Should flogging be an alternative to prison in this country?
Jennifer Koppelman Hutt is a Sirius XM radio host. We already know what you're going to say, Jennifer.
And Daniel Manville is a prisoners' rights attorney. He joins us on the phone.
And Peter Moskos is the author of "In Defense of Flogging," the book that has us talking right now.
OK. I am going to begin with you, because this is your book, Peter. This is your premise. Where did this come from?
PETER MOSKOS, AUTHOR, "IN DEFENSE OF FLOGGING": It came from a prison system that's gotten out of control -- 2.3 million Americans behind bars, and we have no alternatives. So, I say we give convicts the choice to take lashes instead of going to prison. I think it would be better for the convicts. I think it would be better for all of us and would really save us money.
It's really the only -- we need something radical to get the debate started for real about what we're going to do about this prison industrial complex.
WHITFIELD: Is this debate for real? I mean, you've written about it, but who is starting this debate? Is a lawmaker on board with this saying, let's seriously start considering this?
MOSKOS: Well, the debate is starting right here. The debate is starting in my book. I do -- I do say it's sort of like throwing a hand grenade in the debate.
Look, I'm all for prison reform, but people have been talking about prison reform now for 40 years. And during that time we've started a war on drugs that will never work. And now, we have more prisoners than China and they have a billion more people than we do. Something has gone terribly wrong.
WHITFIELD: OK. Well, let me bring in Daniel into this. He's a prisoners' rights advocate.
Daniel, what's your response to this suggestion?
DANIEL MANVILLE, PRISONERS' RIGHTS ATTORNEY (via telephone): I think it should go nowhere. It should be buried, OK, deep down, because it doesn't serve any purpose.
There are alternatives to incarceration. The problem is that because the economic situation of the states, the states automatically start, you know, reducing educational programs, reducing other programs in prison, drug programs, mental health programs, all these programs that would help individuals change themselves while in prison so that once they leave prison, that they will not return.
And I'm a good example of that. I went to prison. I came out and I developed myself to be professor (ph) of a clinical program at a law school in the state of Michigan. OK, so people can change.
WHITFIELD: So, you're saying prison can be a good thing?
MANVILLE: Well, people commit crimes for many reasons. We have a bad economic situation. A lot of people cannot afford rent, food, things like that, so they will commit a crime, and they should be flogged because our -- because of the way our legislators, our Congress people, are running this country the way they let Wall Street get carried away? We should be flogging the people on Wall Street. Maybe if we flogged them, they would not have put us in this position.
So, why not limit it only to prisoners?
WHITFIELD: OK. Well, Jennifer, let me get you in on this. I know you nodded your head already that you don't agree with this idea.
JENNIFER KOPPELMAN HUTT, SIRIUS XM RADIO: Look. This is what I think. Peter, you're clearly a smart man, and smart people can make convincing arguments about just about anything. But flogging, really? I mean, flogging is so barbaric and so inhumane, and ridiculous.
And even if we were to take the route that it weren't this way, giving a convicted criminal the option whether he or she wants to be flogged versus be incarcerated for another year, I don't think they deserve that option exactly.
HUTT: And I know that the prison system needs a lot of --
WHITFIELD: OK. Jennifer, sorry to cut you off. Running out of time.
Jennifer Koppelman, Peter Moskos, Daniel Manville -- thanks to all of you. Appreciate it. Out of time. I know we're going to talk about it again.
All right. Straight ahead, our Wolf Blitzer has just interviewed former President Bill Clinton. We've got a clip coming your way after this.
WHITFIELD: Former President Bill Clinton is talking about President Obama's re-election bid and the 2012 vote. President Clinton sat down for a one-on-one with our Wolf Blitzer.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: How worried are you right now about President Obama getting re-elected?
BILL CLINTON, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: Well, on today's facts, I'd be surprised if he's not re-elected. I think people understand that the recession is more severe than the one I had.
And if you just look at what's going on in Michigan, terrible year for the Democrats in Michigan in 2010. But the United States on the day Barack Obama became president had 2 percent of the world's market for these high percentage, high-powered batteries to make hybrid and all electric vehicles. Today, they have -- we have 20 percent of the world market because of incentives that he put in and pushed and aggressively sought. We have over 30 new battery factories, 18 of them in Michigan, built or under construction.
I can give you other examples like that, where we're trying to build a competitive economy, where they are going forward. I think he's got a good story to tell.
(END VIDEO CLIP) WHITFIELD: Catch Wolf -- Wolf's full interview with former President Bill Clinton today in "THE SITUATION ROOM" at 5:00 Eastern time.
I'm Fredricka Whitfield.
Next up, Brooke Baldwin in the NEWSROOM.