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Looming Debt Deadline; Same Sex Couples Wed in New York; The Mind of the Norway Suspect; Higher Temperatures Hit Records; Same-Sex Marriage Couples Talk About Experience; Mayor Michael Bloomberg Officiates for Same-Sex Marriage Couple Live

Aired July 24, 2011 - 18:00   ET



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: By the authority vested in me by the laws of the state of New York, I now pronounce you married. You may seal your vows with a kiss.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I now pronounce you married. You may seal your vows with a kiss.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I now pronounce you legally married.



DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Oh, boy, it's a historic day in New York. Same-sex marriages begin. And this hour live coverage as Mayor Michael Bloomberg officiates a wedding between two of his staff members.

Also -- trying to get a debt deal done. Happening right now, President Obama meeting with Democratic members from Congress. That as we get breaking news about the Republicans' newest move to settle the debt ceiling crisis.

Plus this --


LEMON: A quiet remembrance, broken only by the sounds of raindrops in Norway as that country pays respect to nearly 100 people, most of them children, killed in two terrorist attacks on Friday. We're live from Oslo where there's also new information about the manifesto the suspect left behind.

I'm Don Lemon. You're in THE CNN NEWSROOM.

(MUSIC) LEMON: The long and sometimes tedious debate over raising the nation's debt ceiling has suddenly become a fast-moving story with lots of twists and turns. There are breaking developments this evening from Washington at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue.

Our chief White House correspondent Jessica Yellin is standing by for us live, as well as our congressional correspondent Kate Bolduan is on the Capitol Hill.

So, Kate, we're going to start with you. I understand you had new information about internal Republican talks and where things stand right now at the Capitol? What can you tell us?

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: There seem to be a couple of paths, if you will, going on right now. But the latest on that internal Republican talk, this is the conference call that House Speaker John Boehner and other House Republican leaders were holding with their members to really update them on the status of the talks.

We received a readout from a couple of sources familiar with the call and kind of the bottom line, you heard Speaker Boehner on this call say -- give some tough talk with members, saying that we need to stick together and we need to stick to our principles. But at the same time, he also appeared to be laying the groundwork on this call, that they're going to need to compromise, because they're going to need to agree to something that will pass the House and the Senate and get to the president's desk. But also, he was not announcing any deal or any kind of bipartisan agreement this late in the afternoon.

One quote from the call, he told members, quote, "It's going to require some of you to make some sacrifices."

At the very same time, Don, real quickly, on the other side of the Capitol, because, really, they have not made any significant progress for the bipartisan agreement, the Democratic leader of the Senate, Harry Reid, he's now, according to a Senate Democratic aide, pushing his own proposal to raise the debt ceiling, one that would raise the debt ceiling through 2012, that would include at least $2.5 trillion in debt reduction and according to this aide, would also satisfy some of the requirements by House Republicans. So, that is something that he is pushing.

So, at the moment, we're not -- we're seeing more division than we are seeing agreement here on Capitol Hill -- Don.

LEMON: It sounds like Republicans are standing firm. No signs of backing off in that call.

BOLDUAN: It seems that we were -- it sounded from the call that we're getting a little bit of both, if you will. That they were standing firm on their principles, as it was described to me in this call, the House speaker said, "We need to stick to our principles of cut, cap, balance" -- that proposal that was really pushed by conservatives, even though there was an acknowledgement that cut, cap, balance is not going to happen, because it cannot pass the Senate. So, in what I saw in his words, he does seemed to be saying, we're going to need to compromise -- maybe trying to lay the groundwork, saying you're going to have to give a little, even though it might not be where you want to -- what you want to do, you're going to have to do, is what he seems to be laying the groundwork for -- Don.

LEMON: All right. Kate, thank you very much.

We want to get now to the White House.

Jessica, I hear there's a high-level meeting starting right now there at the White House. What's going on?


President Obama meeting right now with Majority Leader Reid and Minority Leader Pelosi. An update -- status update as I understand it, to talk about what the next step might be.

My understanding here, a sense of concern, some nervousness, but a desire to retake the initiative and see how to push forward. The focus now is shifting in essence to the Senate, and to see if there's a way to get this out of the House and move onto the Senate where we have seen in the pass when impasses happen and the Senate can often find a find a resolution.

And the focus now is, my understanding, a little bit -- not just here at the White House but even on Capitol Hill, away from talking necessarily about taxes and entitlements as we've heard but a way to just avoid another one of these debt ceiling crises next year and see if there's a way to avoid having a second vote on this debt ceiling so that we have one vote this time and avoid this again before the 2012 election comes.

So, both sides are trying to find some kind of resolution. Certainly, no clarity at this point. High-level meeting as you say going on at the Oval Office right now. As I'm told, no planned statement or I'm not expecting one yet, at least from the president, nothing I've heard so far. But I'll keep you posted if that changes, Don.

LEMON: All right. Thank you, Jessica Yellin and Kate Bolduan. Appreciate both of your reports.

The New York City hotel maid who accused the International Monetary Fund's director, former director, of rape is going public with her accusation. Her name is Nafissatou Diallo. In interviews with media outlets, including "Newsweek,"" the 32-year-old Guinean gives vivid details of the alleged sexual assault. Defense lawyers say she is only going public to inflame public opinion against Dominique Strauss- Kahn. Prosecutors are still deciding whether to move ahead with the case or to drop the charges.

Now, listen to this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNDENTIFIED MALE: I now pronounce you legally married.



LEMON: The first time those words were ever legally spoken to a same- sex couple in New York state. The bride and bride tied the knot in Niagara Falls just after midnight when the law allowing same sex marriage in New York took effect.

And the wedding bells have been ringing all day since then. This hour, you're going to be a guest at a gay wedding in New York City. We're going to get you some live pictures. We're going to take them from Gracie Mansion in just a minute, the official home of Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

In just a short while, Michael Bloomberg will officiate at the wedding there between two of his male staffers. And we will bring that to you here live in the CNN NEWSROOM.

New York City was so swamped for marriage licenses today it had to hold a lottery for 764 open slots. If all of those weddings happen today, it will be a one-day record for the city.

Our Susan Candiotti takes us there as New York kicked off a long, happy day of nuptials.


SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): They're the first male couple to say "I do" as cameras rolled at the city clerk's office.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Until death do us part.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When I heard those last words, "Until death do us part" -- that's it, I just started to cry. And I couldn't stop at that point.

CANDIOTTI: Freddy Zambrano and Marcos Chaljub exchanged vows in front of a handful of witnesses. They met online, fell in love at first sight, and have been fighting for same-sex marriage ever since.

FREDDY ZAMBRANO, MARRYING SAME-SEX PARTNER: It's the moment we've been waiting for for years.

MARCOS CHALJUB, MARRYING SAME-SEX PARTNER: A dream come true for us. A dream come true. This is my husband now, Freddy, as opposed to my boyfriend or my partner.

CANDIOTTI: Becoming among the first same-sex couples to marry in New York, the significance hasn't escaped them, or what they hope to proudly tell their children one day.

CHALJUB: I guess we'll be telling them when we were young, you know, there was no such thing as us being able to get married, and we were part of that day. We were part of like the people who were there when it did happen in New York at least.

CANDIOTTI: They plan on saving the e-mail that told them they won a city hall lottery allowing them to marry this morning.

CHALJUB: As soon as I read this line, congratulations from the Queens --

CANDIOTTI (on camera): Did you scream?

CHALJUB: Did I scream? I'm amazed you guys they didn't hear me on the other end of the city.

CANDIOTTI (voice-over): Freddy works for an insurance company; Marcos, a law firm. Together, they supported the same-sex movement.

ZAMBRANO: I have some people in my life that they're not totally OK with it, but they accept it. And just the fact that they respect us because of that, it's truly the most that I can ask for.

CANDIOTTI: They've already been wearing their rings for five years.

CHALJUB: We're going to polish them up and exchange them again, because we weren't able to do so.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: With this ring --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: With this ring --



CANDIOTTI: But now, they have something they did not have before, a wedding certificate with the words --

ZAMBRANO: We're married.

CANDIOTTI: Susan Candiotti, CNN, New York.


LEMON: And, of course, there are many in New York and across the country who oppose same-sex marriage.


LEMON: Thousands of people turned out to protest across the New York City, across from New York City office of Governor Andrew Cuomo, angry that gay men and women now have the same rights as straight couples.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That's not what the Bible says. The Bible says that there's a husband and a wife, and that's how we're to bring up our children.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Men married men, women married women -- we're against that. Not only that we're against it but God is.


LEMON: Well, many of these protesters are irritated that New York lawmakers didn't go to the voters like other states have done. And despite local opposition, today, there has been no stopping the sprint down the aisle that hundreds of same-sex couples are making.

Now, as we mentioned before, we'll go live to a same-sex wedding ceremony officiated by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg a little bit later on this hour.

I want to turn now to the tragedy in Norway and the disturbing window into the mind of the man suspected of killing at least 93 people in a pair of terrorist attacks there.


LEMON: Images from a 12-minute video reportedly created by Anders Behring Breivik, the man identified by local media as the suspect in the shootings spree at the Norwegian youth camp and the car bombing in Oslo.

And the video is only part of it. There's also a rumbling 1,500-page manifesto that authorities was published online the day of the attacks.

Breivik is set to appear at a court hearing on Monday. He's expected to plead not guilty. Meantime, Norway's prime minister led a memorial service at the Oslo cathedral. Hundreds gathered to mourn, laying flowers and candles outside.

And I want to get our Nic Robertson -- go to our Nic Robertson now. He's standing by for us in Oslo.

Nic, what are you learning about this suspect in light of all this new evidence.

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it's very clear, if it is him that wrote this manifesto, and if it is him that made this 12-minute video, the link was buried in that manifesto. He posted it on YouTube and it appears to have been posted just a couple of hours before the car bomb, the first of the attacks took place.

It does appear to spell out his motivations and indeed how he perpetrated the attack, how he evaded detection. His motivation, he says, is that he is against the Islamization of Europe and blames what he calls the Marxist European government and he believes that a Christian crusade is the solution to this, and that's laid out very clearly in the manifesto.

But perhaps for security officials, law enforcement officials here, what is very worrying is he lays out in that manifesto blow by blow by blow exactly how he built the bombs, exactly how he's evaded detection. And for officials here, that's worrying, because that's going to put a lot of very dangerous information out on the Internet that isn't actually there. That said, it seems, officials believe, this is where he learned most of his bomb-making and other skills through just open sources on the Internet, Don.

Is there any information to indicate that the suspect may have gotten support from anyone else?

ROBERTSON: At the moment, he's saying that he acted alone. The police certainly aren't taking that at face value. There's nothing that we've seen so far that would indicate that. And indeed, when you gaze look through some of the pages of that 1,500-page manifesto, he specifically lays out how he didn't tell other people, how he really sort of withdrew away from even communicating to the radical online groups a year and a half ago.

So, it's so seemed that he's sort of, he's managed to avoid detection by keeping this town to essentially only he was the only one who knew what he was doing. He didn't share it with other people. He's certainly been estranged from his family for a long time. And his friends in the manifesto, he ridicules them in many cases and says it -- gives his analysis that they weren't -- that they didn't believe any sort of the ideas that he believed in and he was ignoring them and carrying on by himself.

In fact, at one point he said what one person can do is stronger than perhaps 100,000 other people who just think about doing something.

LEMON: All right. Nic Robertson, thank you so much.

And just before Nic joined us, I mentioned the memorial service that was held today in Oslo for the victims of the attack, we're going take you there next hour.

You know, we need a deficit reduction deal before August 2nd, and time is coming really quickly. How close are we to an agreement? That discussion is next.

And it's official. Same-sex marriages occurring in the state of New York. Ahead, you'll see a live ceremony from New York City coming up.

And if you want information from us, you can reach out on social media, Twitter, Facebook, and Foursquare. And make sure you check out the book, "Transparent," available anywhere books are sold.



TIMOTHY GEITHNER, TREASURY SECRETARY: The most important thing is that we remove this threat of default from the country for the next 18 months. It's very important we do that. We can't leave the American economy with this cloud of -- CANDY CROWLEY, HOST, CNN'S "STATE OF THE UNION": Through the election?

GEITHNER: Yes. I would say through the election. You know, this is a hard thing to do and you want to take this out of politics. You don't want politics messing around with America's credit.


LEMON: That was Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on CNN's "STATE OF THE UNION," warning of the dangers of a financial default.

So, let's talk about all of it now with CNN contributor Will Cain in New York and Heather McGhee, the director of the Washington office of Demos, a public policy researcher group.

Welcome to both of you. That was a mouthful. I got that out.



LEMON: OK. So, we've got talks that are going on now at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue by phone or either at the White House.

So, Will, Geithner says he wants politics out of the debt ceil debate, but this whole stalemate is nothing but politics, right?

CAIN: Absolutely, Don. Let me say something. The White House has managed to maintain kind of a moral high ground for the last couple of weeks. Obama has come off as the adult in the room.

But Geithner and that one little clip you played, managed to politicize two issues and illustrate why this is falling apart. There will be no default. We don't have enough money to cover our bills but we will pay our bondholders. Why would Geithner suggest we wouldn't?

And the second is, this push to make sure the debt ceiling deal goes past the next election. That's just a political calculation coming from the White House. He's illustrated the problem right there.

LEMON: Heather, what about people who said that this is a manufactured incident, this is a manufactured crisis here, this whole debt ceiling thing.

HEATHER MCGHEE, DEMOS: It is a manufactured crisis in the sense of, you know, where was the outrage from the Republican Party about the skyrocketing debt under the Bush administration when, of course, when the majority of the policies that have caused the deficit to increase were put into place? We know that Ronald Reagan increased the debt limit 17 or 18 times during his presidency.

This is a manufactured crisis because we're putting nation's full faith and credit at risk simply basically for an argument that's quite ideological about tax cuts for, in the end, big corporations and millionaires and billionaires. LEMON: Do you agree with that, Will?

CAIN: Well, I would ask you guys both this -- is it a good idea that we rein in the $14 trillion in debts that we have? Let's just take Obama's proposal that we have $3 trillion in cuts. Is that a good idea?

LEMON: I'm not the one to answer that. Heather is going to have to answer that.

MCGHEE: I think it's really important that we get our long-term debt under control. Right now, we're facing a short-term deficit crisis.

LEMON: I think the question is, Will --

CAIN: If I --

LEMON: Let me jump in here. I think a better question or better way of saying it is that are these two -- is the deficit and the debt ceiling, why are they tied together? Why is Washington tying the two together?

You don't have to tie the debt ceiling to the deficit and therefore, many people are saying it is a manufactured crisis.

MCGHEE: That's right.

CAIN: Yes, you're exactly right, Don, and that's an excellent question. The reason why is because Washington has shown no appetite, nor any history of controlling long-term deficits at any point. So, yes, the Republicans have done something which ultimately you cannot do, and that is hold the debt ceiling hostage to force these cuts.

So, the reason I tethered that is, if you believe it's a good idea, and you'd better credit Republicans for making sure this is happening at this time.


MCGHEE: I don't actually think it's a good idea. I think we are risking a really fragile recovery by sucking out the little bit of economic gas we have on the engine right now. So, I don't believe that immediate draconian spending cuts are the way to go. We learned that in 1937 with the Great Depression.

LEMON: Hey, listen, I want to move on. And I want to talk about something that's happening in New York today, the sixth and most populous state to legalize gay marriage.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a former Republican, now an independent, said this morning that Michele Bachmann and other GOP Leaders who oppose gay marriage are violating their own party's principles. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) MAYOR MICHAEL BLOOMBERG (I), NEW YORK: The values that she espouses, that the Republican Party espouses, are exactly the values that should be promoting this. They want the government out of your personal life, government should not tell you who you can marry and they think that marriage is a stabilizing influence on society and they value the sanctity of marriage. And here are two people who want to get married.


LEMON: OK, so, Will, it's interesting. Is Mayor Bloomberg right?

Is gay marriage actually a conservative socialist view?

CAIN: I think, Mayor Bloomberg, as he put it, is exactly right. I mean, I could basically just say ditto. It's an expansion of freedom.

And, yes, I think it can be a stabilizing force on society to kind of shore up this idea that two people creating a family is the foundation of our society.

LEMON: Heather?

MCGHEE: I agree, absolutely. I don't think it's -- in some ways, it's a conservative view of what kind of personal liberty there should be. But there's also a very progressive tradition of extending equal rights and civil rights to everyone regardless of their race or sexuality.

So, this is actually where Will and I, I think, can agree and it's great that Mayor Bloomberg is conducting the ceremony as we speak. It's fantastic.

LEMON: Look at that. We had a political marriage just now in New York and Washington on television. You guys agreed.

Thank you.


LEMON: Thank you, Heather McGhee. And thank you, Will Cain. Appreciate it.

Now, I want you to listen to this.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was so amazing. It's the only way I can describe it. I lost my breath and a few tears, and it's -- it's indescribable.


LEMON: She is 76 years old. Her partner, 84. And she's referring to being the first same-sex couple to legally marry in New York state under the new same-sex marriage law. In just a few moments here, we're going to take you live to Gracie Mansion where Mayor Michael Bloomberg will officiate at another same sex marriage.

Coming up next here on CNN, the NFL lockout. Now that owners agreed to end the lockout, will we get to see football soon? We'll ask "Sports Illustrated's" Jon Wertheim, next.



ROGER GOODELL, NFL COMMISSIONER: I think we've craft add long-term agreement that can be good for the game of football, be good for the players, be good for the clubs, and mostly and importantly, good for our game and for our fans.


LEMON: That's right. Good for fans. Good for the fans. That's NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell after the owners signed a new bargaining agreement to end their lockout of players. The question now is: are the players about to follow suit?

Joining us now is Jon Wertheim of "Sports Illustrated." There's this weeks' cover with U.S. soccer star Hope Solo.

So, Jon, welcome back to the United States.

The owners have signed. We're hearing the players will do the same in the next day or two. What's the latest?

JON WERTHEIM, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED: It looks like we're going to get football. We're not quite there yet. Still good a couple more yards to go. Owners have signed off on this. Players are going to take their time.

This is going to be a 10-year deal potentially with no escape clauses. So, you want to be sure this really meets your needs. But it looks like we're going to get this deal, Don.

I talked to a player late last week and he said, you know, we still need go over this, but there will be football. And I think that's where we are right now.

LEMON: What does this mean for fans, Jon, the Hall of Fame game, August 7th, already has been canceled. Will that be the only game lost that fans won't be able to see?

WERTHEIM: Depending how long it takes the players to sign off on this. We may lose a little bit more of the preseason. But we're going to get NFL football. We're going to get our regular season.

You know, these preseason games mean a lot of money to the owners. The players don't always necessarily like playing football in August. As fans, given the spectrum of what could happen, we could live with missing a week of exhibition football. Right now, we're only one game cancelled, though.

LEMON: OK. How is this going to affect the teams? It's delayed free agency and it's getting rosters set, right?

WERTHEIM: These next few weeks are just going to be the Wild West. I mean, there are roster spots. There are free agents that need to be signed. I mean, this is just going to be crazy season.

Anyone that plays fantasy football is going to want to hold off as long as possible.

But, again, bottom line, we're going to get football the second Sunday in September. And that's really, I mean, given what we were bracing ourselves for, you know, it's pretty good to be an NFL fan right now. There will be football.

LEMON: All right. Let's switch gears now and talk about some golf. Tiger Woods fired his long-time caddie, Steve Williams, this week. He was with Tiger when he won 13 of his 14 major titles.

Let's listen to Williams' reaction.


STEVE WILLIAMS, TIGER WOODS' FORMER CADDIE: I'm extremely disappointed that, you know, given the fact that the last 18 months have been difficult time for Tiger, obviously working through the scandal, he's had a new coach, swing change, and, yes, the last 18 months have been rather difficult. And I've stuck through thick and thin, been incredibly loyal and then -- you know, and then to have this happened. I mean, basically, you can say I've wasted two years of my life.


LEMON: Wow, quite a reaction there.

So, Listen, Jon. Williams was Tiger's last link to his glory days and he says, he took a lot of heat during Tiger's scandal. What's really going on here?

WERTHEIM: Well, I mean, this sort of dueling loyalties. Tiger upset that Williams worked for another player. Williams is obviously upset.

Here's how -- given what's gone on with Tiger Woods, how could this be handled so poorly? This really has just turned into sort of biblical story where this guy had it all and it just keeps crashing down. This, you know, month by month, there's sort of another decline.

And the fact that Tiger could let this situation turn into a P.R. nightmare really sort of boggles the mind, given what he's been through these last 18, 20 months.

LEMON: How much is Tiger going to miss Williams as he tries to make a comeback from the scandal, and his recent injuries?

WERTHEIM: Yes. I mean, this is a guy who's going to get snapped up in a second. But Tiger's problems right now are physical as well. And until he can get back out there on the golf course, I mean, people see him on the putting green limping around. Until his body stops betraying him, it's almost a moot point.

But, no, I think he's going to miss Steve Williams. And, again, you just wonder how this could go so badly given all the other things he's been through this past year and a half.

LEMON: Jon Wertheim, thank you -- "Sports Illustrated" and the author of the book "Scorecasting." Go out and get that book. Thanks again, Jon.

Next hour, we're going to be talking with Hall of Fame quarterback Fran Tarkenton about the lockout, and also his thoughts about the suit by former players against the NFL charging the league ignored the efforts of concussions. You'll hear some heartbreaking comments from one of Tarkenton's former teammates about the effects on his life. Make sure you stay tuned.

And coming up next, an update on the horrific terror attacks in Norway that's claimed the lives of 93 people.


LEMON: Let's get you caught up on the headlines right now. The suspect in the terrorist attacks in Norway is due in court on Monday. Police say he claims to have acted alone, but is expected to plead not guilty. Local media has identified the suspect as Anders Behring Breivik. The death toll in the two attacks rose to at least 93 today, 86 of those victims gunned down at a youth camp run by the ruling Labor Party. And before that, seven people were killed in a car bombing in the capital, Oslo.

An autopsy may take place as early as Monday to determine the cause of death of singer Amy Winehouse. So far, the death is being treated as, quote, "unexplained," although she did have a history of drug problems and erratic behavior. Winehouse was found dead in her apartment on Saturday. Police say it could be several days before they have autopsy results.

A flurry of activity in Washington this hour as lawmakers try to reach some sort of deal on raising the nation's debt ceiling. Top House and Senate Democrats are at the White House right now discussing the situation with President Obama. On Capitol Hill, House Speaker John Boehner held a long conference call with Republicans to talk about their next move.

Make sure you stay with us tonight for the latest on this developing story. They say they wanted to get this done before the Asian and European markets open tomorrow, and that deadline is approaching very quickly.

A child's birthday party was the scene of a deadly shooting last night in the Dallas suburb of Grand Prairie, Texas. The father, 35-year-old Tan Do killed his wife and four of her family members before turning the gun on himself. About 30 people were attending the party at a roller rink. Police say there had been ongoing marital problems. The couple's two children were not hurt. Four other people were wounded but are expected to recover. Five Chinese carved cups set a record at the "Antiques Road Show" in Tulsa, Oklahoma this weekend. There they are. They're tiny, too, right? An appraiser said the set is worth at least a million dollars, maybe a million and a half. The cups are made up of rhinoceroses' horns. The owner says he's had the cups since the 1970s. Producers say the record-breaking show will air on PBS sometime early next year.

I'm going to turn now to Jacqui Jeras.

You never know.


LEMON: I'm going go in my basement and my attic and I'm going to start cleaning stuff out and taking it to the "Antiques Road Show."

JACQUI JERAS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: I know. Don't you have something? Everybody has something that they're like, oh, I bet this is worth a lot, right?

LEMON: I go on binges and just throw every away so --


JERAS: Do you really? That's good. You're not a hoarder.


LEMON: No. I have a little junk that I need to get rid of now, but anyway onto the weather. It's terrible.

JERAS: Onto the weather. I know. Hang onto your fans and your air conditioning.


JERAS: Anything you've got to help you keep cool.

You know, this is just so unbelievable how long this heat has been lasting.

We had a number of records yesterday. Check them out. 193 record highs. 380 record-high minimums, that's when the low temp is so high it's extreme. A total of 573 records that were broken or tied on Saturday. They're starting to trickle in today, too, by the way, for example, from Pennsylvania already reaching triple digits. Look at the heat index in D.C. Feels like 101. A little better for you now in New York City. And Boston, oh, let's focus on a little bit of good, shall we, 73 in Boston. That's good news. Some heat relief across the northern tier of the country.

Tomorrow is going to try to nudge a little bit further to the south but in exchange we're going to get some showers and thunderstorms. We've seen a lot of that today. Not a lot of organized severe weather but look at things, just flared from the gulf coast to the Great Lakes. We're getting very heavy downpours, isolated flash flooding in the urban areas because we're getting as much as two inches an hour we a few of these thunderstorms, especially across the Ohio Valley. Be aware of that if you're trying to cool off at the pool or the beach or the lake, keep those safety rules in mind, too, when it comes to lightning.

Tomorrow's forecast, showing you more of that. All across the east with the pop-up showers and thunderstorms. It will be impacting your travel in places like Philly, D.C., Atlanta and New Orleans tomorrow. Keep that in mind as you make your way back to work -- Don?

LEMON: Thank you very much, Jacqui Jeras. Appreciate it.

Do you want to go to New York right now? Can we show live pictures of Gracie Mansion? That's where -- OK, there's a couple there.

Gracie Mansion is where the mayor's going to marry two of his top staff members. There we go. We're going to carry it for you live on CNN. It's really going to be history-making. And you're going to see this wedding. Imagine, a conservative mayor, conservative mayor, former presidential contender, now an Independent, performing a same- sex ceremony. Who would have thunk, right?

OK. We'll carry it for you right after the break. Don't go anywhere.





JO-ANN SHAIN, SAME-SEX MARRIAGE PARTNER: We're New Yorkers. Yes, we could have gone to Connecticut or Massachusetts, but we're New Yorkers and we really held out and wanted to have our marriage legal here in New York.


LEMON: That is Jo-Ann Shain and Dr. Mary Jo Kennedy this morning. Single and excited. This is a couple married and over the moon at their wedding reception. They graciously took a break to talk about this day in New York history when same-sex couples can get married.

So thank you. We appreciate it. Congratulations.

We also want to go to Doug Robinson and Mike Elsasser.

Did I say that right, Mike, Elsasser?


LEMON: Perfect, OK.

They just had their wedding as well. All four of you were part of a group that sued in 2004 for same-sex unions in New York. That failed. Now the legislature gave you what the courts could not, a legal marriage license. So thank you so much.

Doug, are you excited?

DOUG ROBINSON, SAME-SEX MARRIAGE PARTNER: We're ecstatic. We -- in our lifetime never thought this would happen, and it's so wonderful that today the state of New York recognizes our family, including not only just Michael and I but also our two sons to say that we are a family.

LEMON: Yes. And your two sons -- You have two sons together. Did you adopted or were these from previous marriages, Mike?

ELFASSER: These are our adopted sons. We had them -- Justin was 11 months when we received him and Zachary was 20 months.


So Mary Jo and Jo-Ann, we haven't forgotten you. We're going to talk to you because it's your big wedding day as well. But you know why? We're going to come back after a break we want you to watch this with us.

We're going live now to Gracie Mansion in New York City. That's where Michael Bloomberg is going to marry two of his long-time aides. That's after a break.




LEMON: It's a fine and fancy day in the city of New York and right here on CNN. I feel like I should be wearing my seersucker suit and drinking mint juleps.

You're watching a milestone in gay rights. Today, New York became the sixth and largest state to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

And -- there we go. Come on. We're got to see the ceremony. Come on, guys, get it together.

Right now, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is about to officiate at a ceremony to bring together two of his staff members, John Feinblad (ph) and Jonathan Bradley Mense (ph) are getting married with Gracie Mansion as the background. We're going to bring that to you live.

Joining me now to witness this special event, two couples also just married today. Jo-Ann Shain and Dr. Mary Jo Kennedy have been together for 29 years and they have a daughter. And Doug Robinson and Michael Elsasser who have been together for 20 years and they have two sons. OK. So, Mary Jo, you guys took out time from your reception -- your wedding was today, I'm sure you have guests there -- but this is such a big deal you wanted to be here on CNN to celebrate and tell the world about it. Why?

DR. MARY JO KENNEDY, SAME-SEX MARRIAGE PARTNER: This is especially a big day, and, yes, we have guests here and it's a wonderful occasion. This is our wedding day and we're just so proud.

LEMON: Look at the big smile on Jo-Ann's face.



LEMON: Say again?

KENNEDY: Can't help it. It's a wonderful day.

LEMON: Yes. We're having a little bit of trouble hearing you.

Listen, Doug, I'm going to ask you, there have been protesters saying that they're upset because the state of New York redefined marriage between, you know, a man and a woman to mean two men and two women. They're upset over defining what marriage is. Is that a talking point or buzz term like "real Americans"?

ROBINSON: The interesting thing about that is we live in America. This is such a wonderful, great country and we're so proud of the Americans and New Yorkers today. And having said that, diversity really rules out here. And it's wonderful that they're able to say -- share their experience and their feelings, but it's also tremendous that today justice rules for all and marriage, equality rules in the house of this country, particularly in this state of New York.

LEMON: All right. Doug, Michael, Jo-Ann, Mary Jo, stand by.

You're looking at a live picture of Gracie Mansion. We're going to watch a live same-sex marriage between two of Mayor Bloomberg's top aides. He's going to officiate. It's going to be interesting.

You don't want to go anywhere. We're back right after a break.




LEMON: Live pictures now of Gracie Mansion. You see the flower girls going in. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg about to officiate over the ceremony of John Feinblad (ph) and Jonathan Bradley Mense (ph). It will play out right here on CNN.

Why don't we listen to it for a little bit.


MICHAEL BLOOMBERG, (I), MAYOR OF NEW YORK CITY: Good evening, and welcome to Gracie Mansion. I just wanted to warn everyone, I've only officiated at two of these ceremonies before and I will do my best, but if I slip up, Maeve and Georgia, you will feel free step in and tell me I'm doing anything wrong, right? Can you do that? I have two daughters myself, so I'm used to people telling me when I'm doing it wrong.


We are gathered here today in the presence of family and friends to witness the exchange of marriage vows of John and Jonathan. Today, John and Jonathan come together to officially pledge to live the rest of their lives as one. The ancient ceremony in which they now participate, and have asked us to share with them, pre-dates recorded human history. And today, in this city and in this state, history takes an important step forward by allowing every person to participate.

So as we now listen to the words and witness John and Jonathan enter into the oldest, most-revered contract, let us pause for a moment and remember the importance of this to them and to us. They wish to establish a union, which is greater than the sum of its parts, and we are grateful -- Mike is going in and out -- we are grateful. We are grateful. There we go. Yes? No? We are grateful that they are allowing us to take part in this truly momentous ceremony with them and for us.

Maeve, Georgia, decades from now, when you are attending the weddings of your great-grandchildren, this occasion may come up, and I hope you'll remember it this way. on a beautiful summer evening in New York City, two people who loved each other dearly came together in front of family and friends and pledged their lives to each other. And when all is said and done, that's what tonight is really all about. That's what this ceremony is about for every couple who are, at this moment, making the exact same commitment to each other. And I really am glad that I asked to be part of it.


I did.


And I'm glad Jonathan's parents, Ruth and Sandy, and John's step- mother, Lois, are here to share in this wonderful day, along with the members of her family. But let us not forget, there is quite a cheering section looking down from above, including John's parents, Eugene and Marjorie.

Every one of us, John and Jonathan, wishes for you a love that makes both of you better people, that continues to give you joy and that provides you with energy with which to face the responsibilities of your lives, not to mention your jobs for the city government.


If you take care of each other, never stop listening and never stop laughing, we know you will do just fine.

And now, for the moment that you have all been waiting for.

Do you, John, solemnly declare that you take Jonathan to be your spouse? Do you promise to love, cherish and keep him for as long as you both shall live?


BLOOMBERG: As a symbol of your promise to Jonathan, we have a ring which you are going place on his finger.

Thank you. There you go. Don't drop it.

There we go. It actually fits. Way to go.

Do you, Jonathan, solemnly declare that you take John to be your spouse? Do you promise to love, cherish and keep him as long as you both shall live?


BLOOMBERG: All right. As a symbol of your promise to John, please place this ring on your finger. I have the ring right here. Here you go. Way to go.

John, and Jonathan, usually when the three of us are together we are discussing the finer points of illegal guns or consumer fraud.


I can't tell you how nice this is for a change.


And I can't tell you how pleased I am that this day has finally arrived. It has taken New York State a long time to recognize what the two of you must have known instinctively, that two people who want to be together and raise a family together and spend of rest of their lives together, have a relationship and a beautiful family, that in every way deserves to be recognized and commemorated equally under the eye of the law. And today, we are doing just that. And today, surrounded by family and friends, you are making history, not only for the obvious reasons, you are making another kind of history equally important. You are writing the next chapter in your personal history and that of your family. And by going through this ceremony, you are changing the future for yourself and for generations to follow.

And when we look beyond the excitement and satisfaction of what today means to so many who thought for it to be possible, we come back to what it means to you, John, and to you, Jonathan, and to your families stretching back and stretching forward through the years. It is such a simple thing, but it is such an incredible and profound thing. And now to honor John and Jonathan, a song from the musical "Cabaret" sung by the great Joel Grey (ph).



LEMON: All right. As they are singing there, and when they get back to more discussing and a little bit more personal stuff, we'll get back to the wedding.

I want to bring in our guests now to talk about this. Joining me now for this special occasion is Jo-Ann Shain and Dr. Mary Jo Kennedy, who got married earlier today. And Doug Robinson and Michael Elsasser got married today.

What do you think of this when you see this, Jo-Ann, happening on national television? It is historic.

SHAIN: Well, it's really wonderful, I mean, this is history in the making and it's wonderful to see and it's wonderful to be a part of it.

LEMON: Yes. And you see there, Jo-Ann, Maeve and Georgia, their two daughters, the daughters of the two men. They're helping officiate.

SHAIN: Well, that's wonderful. That's wonderful that their daughters can be part of this wonderful and terrific celebration. Our daughter was there for us today. And it was an unforgettable experience.

LEMON: And, Michael, you said your two sons were there today, correct?

ELSASSER: Yes. And they're 23 and 25 years old now, and they were our best men today. It was wonderful.

ROBINSON: As well as witnessing our document when we became married. So it was really a great moment for us.

LEMON: You guys have been together what? 25 years?

ROBINSON: 25 years, and it's been wonderful. And we are very blessed to have two wonderful sons. And we have a great relationship, and great family members who are very supportive.

LEMON: Jo-Ann, how long have you and Mary Jo been together?

SHAIN: 29 years.

LEMON: 29 years.


LEMON: I've got to ask you this. Some people would say, why on earth would you want to get married? Straight couples are going, what's wrong with gay people? Why do they want to get married? We don't even want to get married.

SHAIN: Well, can you imagine a right that most people have, but we don't have, because of who we are and who we love? Well, that's over now. We have that right and we're very proud of that. And it's just a terrific day, and the day is really about love.

LEMON: Yes. And do you feel the same way, Michael?

ELSASSER: I do feel the same way. That we've -- we've been together so long, but today something else was added to our love and our relationship, and it just makes it so much better for all of us.