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Race for the GOP Nomination Heads to South Carolina

Aired January 12, 2012 - 04:00:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, HOST, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Broadcasting from the CNN Center in Atlanta, Georgia, I`m Carl Azuz and this is CNN Student News. Thank you for spending part of your day with us. We`re kicking things off today with some presidential politics.

Specifically, the race for the Republican nomination. It`s heading to South Carolina now. That state has the next primary on January 21st. Most of the candidates are trying to catch the winner of this week`s New Hampshire primary.


AZUZ (voice-over): You can see the full results right here. We reported former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney`s victory yesterday. Plus second and third place finishes for Representative Ron Paul and former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman. They were followed by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, former Senator Rick Santorum and Texas Governor Rick Perry.


AZUZ: Now everybody`s still in the race. Nobody dropped out after New Hampshire. But South Carolina could be a make-or-break event. Paul Steinhauser talks about what it takes to run for the White House.


PAUL STEINHAUSER, WASHINGTON, D.C.: Running for the White House is unlike any other contest. This is the ultimate prize and it`s definitely the major leagues when it comes to campaigning. Everybody thinks the election is in November, but, honestly, that election starts often two years beforehand. We`re going to the early voting states, meaning voters starting to build up a staff.

This is a commitment that takes a lot more than just a few weeks. Running for the White House is no cheap proposition. It takes a lot of money. This time around, we will see maybe a billion-dollar campaign.

Why does it cost so much money to run for the White House? Because it`s more than just a state operation. You`re running in all 50 states. And it takes a lot of money, not only to build up a staff to reach out to voters, but also the travel, the commercials. We`re talking about an immense amount of money.

You don`t always be rich to run for the White House. You can have ideas, and if you start generating buzz, well, then the money follows, especially nowadays with the Internet. It is so much easier now to reach out to anybody to raise money than it was in the old days.

To have a successful campaign, you need a pretty large staff, no doubt about it. You have to have people in the early voting states, like Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Florida and Nevada. People who are reaching out to voters, people who are setting up events for the candidate.

When it comes to a campaign staff, candidates often like to have young people and old people as well. It`s definitely a mixture. Their top strategies are often people who`ve been around for cycles. But a lot of the younger people out in the states, the volunteers and the fresh faces, those are the people who are knocking on doors and saying hello to voters and trying to spread the message about their candidates.

There are a lot of positions in a campaign, but there are a few people that stand out the most. And one of them will be the campaign manager. That`s the person who manages a campaign, basically the boss who decides who does what and where the candidate goes and what the candidate says, to a degree.

The Internet`s changed a lot when it comes to running for the White House. Used to be, back in the day, a candidate would have a pretty good - - pretty good handle on his message, getting out there to the media.

But nowadays, anybody can make a video, and that video can go viral. This is the big leagues. It takes a lot of money. It`s very grueling. It tears up candidates, inside and out. And only the strongest survive.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: See if you can ID me. I`m a country that has 11 official languages. I`m located on the southern tip of a continent. I have three different capitals, but none of them is my largest city, Johannesburg.

I`m South Africa, and I have one of the world`s highest unemployment rates for young people.


AZUZ: As you might expect, many South Africans hope to avoid being part of that unemployment statistic by going to college. But there are a lot more students who want to enroll and who are actually qualified than there are spaces for them at the schools, and that equaled a dangerous situation in Johannesburg on Tuesday.


AZUZ (voice-over): One woman died,. and more than a dozen other people were hurt after a stampede happened on the University of Johannesburg campus. Thousands of people had lined up at the gates to try to get an admission spot. Some slept out overnight.

Even after the ambulances left the scene of the stampede, hundreds of people were still lined up, hoping for a chance to enroll.


AZUZ: Moving from South Africa to the Middle Eastern nation of Syria, international journalists like our own Nic Robertson have been allowed into the Syria for the first time in months. Protesters there have been fighting with Syrian government forces. And these journalists are giving us a rare first-hand look at the tension and the conflict.


NIC ROBERTSON, CNN REPORTER: The level of anger and passion here is absolutely palpable. We`re just a few miles from the center of Damascus, and (inaudible) crowd here (inaudible) --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Speaking foreign language).

ROBERTSON: Thank you. Thank you. This is a crowd here of perhaps several thousand people. They`ve taken over this whole area. They`ve put rocks in the road to prevent the police coming in here.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): It is a rare opportunity to meet the people who want to overthrow Syrian president Bashar al-Assad.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The situation is very bad. We are only -- want to be like you, like the Western people. We want to be freedom (sic). We want to be free people.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`m afraid, when I`m talking to you right now, why? Because gal left this scarf. I`m going to my home and I`m not sure, 100 percent sure, that I`m going to be safe, because if not today, if not tomorrow, they will arrest me.

OBERTSON (voice-over): Their defiance possible because two orange- jacketed Arab League monitors are here.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If you are here, without them, you don`t -- you will never going to see any protester.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): Even so, protesters told us they didn`t trust the Arab League mission.

ROBERTSON: They`re absolutely desperate to show us the level of suffering. And they say they can`t go to the hospitals because if they do, the government hospitals, they fear being arrested.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): When the monitors leave, so do we. Within minutes, they are stopped.

ROBERTSON: We`re barely half a mile from that anti-government rally. And here, there are pro-government supporters now, blocking the road, a small group, trying to show the monitors that their support for Bashar al- Assad. This appears to be an impromptu demonstration. But it`s surprising, because clearly they knew this was the way the monitors were going to come.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): And it`s not the only pro-government rally in town. At least two others. Here, a huge P.A. system blasts the president`s message, government troops dancing with the crowds.

ROBERTSON: The most striking difference between this pro-government rally and the opposition rallies that we`ve seen, here it`s a celebration, it`s a carnival atmosphere. At the opposition rallies, there is absolute real fear in people`s eyes. They`re terrified of their situation.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): Here, they say they trust the president.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Inaudible) if you want see, you can see. That`s real here.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): For now, Assad remains in control

Nic Robertson, CNN, Damascus, Syria.



Haiti is one of the poorest countries in the


AZUZ (voice-over): The impact, enormous --

Experts estimate that one-third of Haiti`s population

Countries, organizations and individuals

Two years after the quake, the country has transitioned

You can be part of this. Go to the "Spotlight" section

Click on the "Impact Your World" link


AZUZ (voice-over): This one is for the birds. At least one bird, at least

The two were reunited

Maybe it`s hoping they`ll


AZUZ: It would certainly give him a chance to show off his "talonts"