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Supreme Court to Hear Obama-care Case on Monday; Queen Shows Up at Wedding; New Orleans Saints Take Huge Hit from NFL; Compensation to Massacre Victims; The Killing of Trayvon Martin; Cheney Recovering from Transplant
Aired March 25, 2012 - 18:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: What is a life worth in Afghanistan? New information on what the U.S. calls an offer to help. Some say it's compensation for massacre involving a U.S. soldier.
A simple hoodie now a symbol of solidarity and support in honor of Trayvon Martin.
And a change in strategy for the admitted shooter's attorney. Does the controversial "Stand Your Ground" law even apply?
LEMON: I'm Don Lemon. Thank you for joining us.
The U.S. military is piecing together the puzzle of what Staff Sergeant Robert Bales was doing the night of a massacre in Kandahar province, Afghanistan. The most surprising detail appears to be the accused soldier's decision to split his alleged rampage into two trips.
CNN's Sara Sidner has the latest on the investigation and the military's attempts to make amends.
SARA SIDNER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This case is becoming more and more curious. For every detail that's released, more questions emerged. The latest detail comes from a U.S. official who told CNN that Army Staff Sergeant Bales left his base, went to one village, and then returned to base and went to another. In both villages, people were massacred.
Now, the questions that arise from that is: exactly who may have seen him when he returned to base? Did he go inside? How was it discovered that he left? And how did he end up in two different villages without anyone noticing?
And the second bit of information that we've been able to get is from an Afghan official that has now been confirmed by a U.S. official that compensation has been paid to the victims of the Panjwai massacre. And we are talking about a figure somewhere around $860,000. The equivalent of that has been paid in Afghani in cash. We understand that for each person who died, the family member got $50,000. And for each person who is injured, the family members got $10,000 per person.
That's a large sum of money for these villagers who live in very, very difficult and dire circumstances. It's also a huge security risk for them. The area is known to be a former stronghold of the Taliban. Kandahar is the birthplace of the Taliban.
But there are still so many questions left unanswered in this case. One of those was brought up today again. The Afghan government says 16 people were killed in the massacre but the U.S. government has charged Army Staff Sergeant Bales with 17 counts of murder. And no one seems to be able to tell us exactly where that other person is coming from.
We also can tell you that in this case, that the victims had said that they would not accept compensation, that they only wanted justice. But clearly, they have accepted some money from the United States. Still they want justice to be done.
Sara Sidner, CNN, Kabul, Afghanistan.
LEMON: All right. And the amount of compensation being paid may surprise many people. Fifty thousand dollars may not sound like much, but it's far more than the usual compensation for casualties of war.
Afghans caught in the crossfire usually get just $2,000. That's twice as much as the average Afghan makes in a year. Those amounts are fraction of the $1.8 million on average paid out to the victims of the 9/11 attacks.
Churchgoers in cities across the nation traded their Sunday best for hoodies today, just like the one 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was wearing when he was shot and killed. Not your typical church attire. But these were not typical church services. Many churches are urging followers to sign online petitions demanding justice for the man who admits shooting Martin, George Zimmerman.
(VIDEO CLIP PLAYS)
LEMON: Some brought iced tea and Skittles with them to church services in Atlanta. That's what Trayvon was carrying back from a store when he crossed paths with George Zimmerman.
Reverend Jesse Jackson spoke at a church near Stanford, Florida, the site of the killing. Jackson says that our society has become way too accepting of violence.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REV. JESSE JACKSON, CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST: If it's black on white, it's jail time. If it's white on black, it's revolt time. If it's black on black, or white on white or brown on brown, it's Miller time. We have adjusted to a crippling, threatening set of violence that we as a nation wants to become more civil and go to higher ground.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: George Zimmerman is part of a neighborhood watch and when he saw Martin walking around in a hoodie, he got suspicious and started following him. Zimmerman says he shot Martin in self-defense. But it turns out that Martin was never armed.
There's a lot of talk about Florida's "Stand Your Ground" law going on in this case. Now, it allows someone to use deadly force any time they have a reasonable fear that an assailant could harm them or someone else.
Initially, Zimmerman's attorney said it probably didn't apply in this case, but now, he is changing his tune.
I want to get straight to our George Howell who is in Sanford, Florida, right now.
George, what is the lawyer saying now about the "Stand Your Ground" law? At first he said, "Oh, it's self-defense, it doesn't apply." Is he changing his tune, in fact?
GEORGE HOWELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Don, the attorney Craig Sonner says, after reviewing the "Stand Your Ground" law, he believes that is the best way to protect his client if, indeed, his client is arrested.
We actually heard from Governor Rick Scott talking about the "Stand Your Ground" law, the subject of great discussion here in Florida, Don, and around the country. Take a listen to what he had to say on "STATE OF THE UNION" this morning.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GOV. RICK SCOTT (R), FLORIDA: You know, I'm going have different elected officials and appointed individuals. But we'll look at all of it. But the first thing we're going to do is really do a thorough investigation to see what happened here. We've -- no one can imagine this happening to their family. We've got to find out exactly what's going to happen. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement, State Attorney Angela Corey is doing a great job knowing what happened and make sure that justice prevails. We have to do that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOWELL: So you remember Governor Rick Scott did speak to Trayvon Martin's family. Sybrina Fulton today we know was in church in Miami with support of her church's family. Also as you mentioned, Don, Reverend Jesse Jackson here in Florida.
All of this, Don, leading up to tomorrow. We are expecting a lot of people, some celebrities, to be here for a march from a local church over to city hall. Now, city hall -- rather not city hall, the Civic Center I should say, Don -- the Civic Center is where city commissioners will hold their regular meeting. They are doing it there because they expecting big crowds. We also learned, Don, that the family may speak at that church tomorrow. So, a big day expected.
LEMON: You mentioned the mom, Sybrina Fulton, and you mentioned church services. How is Trayvon Martin being remembered today? Is it just church services? Are there any memorials going on?
HOWELL: Well, from what we learned, media was not allowed inside the church, but you see what's happened, Don, at churches around the country. People wearing hoodies to show solidarity for this family. The hoodie, as you mentioned, symbolic at this point for people who, as it was described, George Zimmerman in that 911 tape, seems suspicious. So, certainly, a lot of people showing support today in churches.
LEMON: CNN's George Howell -- George, thank you very much.
Much more of the Trayvon Martin case in about five minutes when we talk with the organizer of the rally planned for tomorrow right here in Atlanta.
And in our next hour, we go in depth on the Trayvon Martin killing, and there are a couple of very powerful interviews that we're going want to hear, to the moms of young black male is talking about the fear they lived with daily, with their sons saying -- believing their sons might not come home. They are very emotional interviews and you're going to want to watch it. It's coming up at the top of the hour here on CNN.
It is already Monday in Seoul, South Korea, where President Barack Obama is waking up today. Sunday, he toured the Korean demilitarized zone, shaking hands with soldiers there. It was the president's first visit to the tense border between North and South Korea. He is in Korea for a nuclear security summit involving 54 countries.
And he had a warning for North Korea.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: North Korea will achieve nothing by threats or by provocations. North Korea knows its obligations and it must take irreversible steps to meet those obligations. On this the United States and the Republic of Korea are absolutely united.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: The president and his South Korean counterpart are worried over the North Korea's plan to launch a satellite into orbit next month. The U.S. and its allies say this is a thinly veiled attempt to test a long range missile.
The man who's a heartbeat away from the presidency now has a new heart beating in his chest. Former Vice President Dick Cheney is recovering from heart transplant surgery yesterday. He's already survived five other attacks. Here's CNN's Athena Jones.
ATHENA JONES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Former Vice President Cheney waited more than 20 months for this heart to become available. In a statement released by his office, he thanked his team of doctors and medical professionals for their continued, outstanding care.
Now, we've also heard from a spokesman for former President George W. Bush, communications director Freddy Ford. He said that President Bush was in touch with the Cheney family yesterday. He and Mrs. Bush were happy to hear that the surgery went well and they are keeping Vice President Cheney in their prayers for a full and speedy recovery.
Now, this is the first time that Cheney has been hospitalized for heart problems. He's had five heart attacks over the course of his life. The first one back in June of 1978, when he was just 37 years old. Now, at 71, Cheney is on the high end of the age group of people who usually get these heart transplants. Most people who get heart transplants are in their 50s.
Athena Jones, CNN, Falls Church, Virginia.
LEMON: Thank you, Athena. How do you feel about this comment from President Obama?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: If I had a son, he'd look like Trayvon.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: At least two of the Republican candidates for president think it was out of line for the President Obama to make that statement. Heartfelt emotions or a political play? We're going to discuss it with Will Cain and L.Z. Granderson, next.
LEMON: It is a winning weekend for Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum. He spent most of his time in Wisconsin, but he's also celebrating his victory in Saturday's Louisiana primary. He got 49 percent of the vote in Louisiana to Mitt Romney's 27 percent.
But Romney still holds a wide lead in the battle for the party delegates. Wisconsin, Maryland, and the District of Columbia hold the next contest on April 3rd.
Republican hopefuls and even President Obama are weighing in on the Trayvon Martin story. Here is the president on Friday in the Rose Garden.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) OBAMA: If I had a son, he'd look like Trayvon. And, you know, I think they are right to expect that all of us as Americans are going to take this with the seriousness that it deserves.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Let's bring in CNN contributor Will Cain, and CNN.com contributor L.Z. Granderson, also a senior writer at ESPN.
Oh my gosh. Kumbayah, are you guys going be OK sitting right next to each other? No fighting?
WILL CAIN, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Right here in person. If anything goes -- if anything goes wrong, there is nothing to stop it.
LEMON: No scratching. All right.
L.Z. GRANDERSON, CNN.COM CONTRIBUTOR: It's for the ratings. We're going to go MMA for the ratings.
LEMON: All right. Serious subject though. We heard the president commenting last week in the Rose Garden, L.Z. Should the president have commented on this case?
GRANDERSON: Absolutely. And I think it's disingenuous to believe that he wouldn't comment on this.
Everyone's -- not everyone -- a lot of people are tripping over themselves trying not to say race, trying not to talk about color. But you know what? That's a vital part of this conversation, that's a vital part of this entire scenario. And so, to assume that President Obama, a black man in the United States, would not have a reaction to what happened to Trayvon Martin is incredibly ridiculous. And so, it's natural for him to respond to that.
LEMON: I wonder if the situation were reversed, if President Bush, let's just say, pick a president, who's of a different color, had commented and said, you know, I have -- I remember having -- when my son was 17 years old, would people be saying the same thing? Because that's essentially what the president was saying, if I had a son, meaning he'd look like Trayvon, you know? Yes.
GRANDERSON: You know, it's really, really disheartening to me to see, you know, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum trying to politicize this.
LEMON: We're going to get them. I'm going to play -- I'm going to play those sound bites, L.Z. But I want to and then we can talk about it.
But, Will, what do -- do you think the president should have commented? CAIN: I have mixed feelings about it, Don. I mean, I think L.Z. makes a pretty compelling argument for President Obama stepping into what's become a very divisive issue. But my whole problem with this case, Don, and whole problem, with anyone for that matter commenting on this case, from the president, down to L.Z. and myself, is there's still not, there's still not a full spectrum of information here. There's not a finished investigation.
Now, I realized what are the complaints have been -- that's what it's about. There's not a good investigation. But there's still this whole timeline, everything looks to be --
GRANDERSON: What do you need?
CAIN: Everything looks to be condemning towards George Zimmerman. But we don't have all the facts, bottom line.
GRANDERSON: What do you need, Will? What more do you need? Certainly what do you need beyond the 911 tape?
CAIN: There is still a moment in this timeline, in this case, where George Zimmerman and Trayvon Martin were face to face. What happened at that moment? Was George Zimmerman attacked? Does he have a legitimate claim to self-defense? Obviously, that's what he contends.
GRANDERSON: Will, you cannot tell me you thought a skinny 17-year-old boy was going kill without a weapon that big grown man. That is absolutely ridiculous stance to take. I hear what you're saying about all the facts, but if you just look at the physicality of it all. That's a ridiculous argument.
LEMON: Let me jump in here.
GRANDERSON: I don't understand why going slow sparks outrage.
LEMON: I think -- I think you guys are mixing up the two things. The president commented on was the feelings of a parent, and you cannot help but feel for the parents in any situation. You cannot help but feel for anyone who loses a child. That's what many people in the country are commenting on and that's what raised the emotion.
The whole thing about what happened, yes, Will, the investigation does have to play out. But I think what most people are commenting on and what most people feel here are any time someone loses a child, it is terribly horrific and why wouldn't anyone want to comment on that? How could that not touch any person to say something about it?
CAIN: Well, obviously, everything you just said is true, but children die every day in this country. Children die under horrible circumstances, but we don't talk about it on TV. My only point --
LEMON: We talk about it all the time. I just did a story on the kids who died in Afghanistan and we were talking about it. The president has commented on that. CAIN: I don think there's an intelligent -- I don't think there's an intelligent rebuttal to my point of few here that all we're doing is saying, all I'm saying is, we don't have a full set of facts. We don't know everything that happens. The only response I get is outrage and emotion.
And all I'm telling you is: outrage and emotion aren't good enough. There's a legal system. We are innocent until proven guilty in this country.
I'm also telling you, everything looks bad for George Zimmerman here. It looks ugly.
LEMON: Will, we get that. That is not what -- hang on. L.Z., let me do this. That is not what -- that is not what we are saying. Of course, the investigation had to play off. That's what every single person has been saying that. I've seen on television every commenter, everyone has talked about the reports from Sonner, the attorney, saying that this guy was attacked. That his client in fact was the victim here. We understand that.
Btu that's -- what we're at this point, I think people are saying that there's a realization about profiling in America that people don't understand. Let the investigation play out. Sure.
CAIN: No, no, no, no.
LEMON: There is a conversation that people are afraid to hear and don't want to talk about as it comes to profiling. Go ahead, Will.
CAIN: No, no, no. You shifted the debate to racial profiling. And that's not the conversation we were having. You asked a question about what people should be commenting on this case, including President Obama and us here sitting on this seats.
And what I'm telling you is, unless you are getting on to me and you guys attacking me for simply not joining an outrage and emotion, that's my job.
GRANDERSON: No, no, no.
CAIN: My job now is to simply come on TV and express outrage and emotion. What I'm telling you is the public has made mistakes in these kinds of cases before. In the Duke lacrosse case, the whole country condemned some guys without a full set of facts.
What I'm telling is, I think a responsible person in my seat, much less in --
LEMON: But you are expressing outrage in your response now. You are expressing an outrage? I am telling you the difference between the two. You are getting --
CAIN: Because I am outrage with the irrationality you are asking from me. You are asking me to come on TV and be irrational and --
GRANDERSON: There is absolutely nothing irrational about what we are talking about right now, Will. What I really find irrational is your difficulty at even talking about race. Your difficulty, when you -- I mean --
CAIN: Race isn't even part of this conversation so far.
GRANDERSON: Race is always a part of this conversation. That's the problem. You try to put these items into vacuums as if they are individuals and separated. They're not.
We have a very long -- centuries long history of racial tension in this country. So to talk about this subject matter and pretend that you can compartmentalize things like that, like this is racial profiling and this is the law and this is the stand your ground. No, they are all integrated. It's all a part of it.
CAIN: Let me --
GRANDERSON: No, no, let me finish.
LEMON: Let him finish and then I'll let you go.
GRANDERSON: And as far as the emotional -- so as far s the emotional response to it, you are a dad. I'm a dad. You should have emotional response to this.
That boy sat in a cold -- on a cold state for three days and the police did nothing to help find his parents. You should have an emotional reaction to that. If nothing else, that's what you're feeling.
CAIN: My job is not to come on TV and be emotional. I can tell you this as far as the race component. If George Zimmerman were black and Trayvon Martin were white, I would grant Zimmerman, the black man, just the same benefit of the doubt, that I'm granting any defendant in any case.
Race is for me being a responsible commentator has nothing to do with this.
LEMON: Will, I don't want -- I don't want to beat up --
GRANDERSON: I have to remind you that race has a lot to do with it.
LEMON: I don't want to beat up on you, Will. But you are being -- you're outraged at the outrage. And again I think you're right.
CAIN: I don't even know what that means.
LEMON: No, you said, I'm outraged that everyone is so outraged about it. I think you're right that --
CAIN: No, I didn't. I said that I am outraged that you guys are requiring that of me. That you're acting like -- (CROSSTALK)
LEMON: I didn't require that of you. No, do not put -- that's not what I said to you. I'm not requiring that at all. That's not what I said.
I told you what the president was commenting on, I think that's what -- I told you about the emotion that people are feeling.
But as far as talking about the merits of the case, I agree with you. I think that we have to wait for the investigation to play out. But every time someone comments or talks about the emotional reality of racism in the country or the reality of profiling, it doesn't mean that they can't speak to that.
CAIN: They didn't ask me about profiling, Don.
LEMON: Well, but you said --
CAIN: You asked me about the president commenting on this case.
LEMON: Yes, but you went there. You talked about it.
CAIN: OK, look, bottom line in the end, I want the viewers to trust me on this. I will not comment on anything without knowing what I'm talking about, without knowing the facts of everything, single thing I talk about. Hold me to that standard, for my political opinion, to my opinion on cases like this.
This to me has nothing to do with race. What it has to do with is facts.
GRANDERSON: And the fact is race is a part of this conversation.
LEMON: OK. Are we done? Are we done? We're good.
CAIN: This has been so hot, the camera is going to blow up. This thing buzzing the whole segment long -- seriously, have you heard it buzzing?
LEMON: Yes, I love it. You know what I like about this? I think that it's good to have these sorts of conversations. And Will and I are friends. L.Z. and I are friends. All three of us are friends, and we talk like this offline as we do on television.
CAIN: With exclamation points.
CAIN: This is about race.
LEMON: The country should be talking like this as well. So, thank you guys for participating. I'll see you again next weekend. Great conversation.
Very emotional, as you can see.
Trayvon Martin's parents will speak before the Sanford City Council tomorrow afternoon. Before that, a march is planned in Sanford to show support for them and call for justice in this case. We're going to talk with the minister who is leading that march in two minutes.
LEMON: The killing of unarmed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin is bringing rallies to streets across the country. Tomorrow, a major march is planned on the city council in Sanford, Florida, the place where a neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman admits shooting Trayvon Martin.
Now, the man leading tomorrow's march joins us now. He's Reverend Jamal Bryant. He's a pastor of the Empowerment Temple Church in Baltimore.
Reverend, thank you very much.
Before I get to the question, you said -- you were watching the last segment. You are saying, put me in coach. What did you want to say that? I thought it was a very -- it was a great conversation between three people that I think a lot of the country is having the same conversation.
REV. JAMAL BRYANT, EMPOWERMENT TEMPLE CHURCH: I think it was a great audition for Will trying to jack (ph) it to get his own show, but it didn't speak to the issue that it really is a race issue.
The reality is tomorrow marks 30 days. We know the accomplice. We've heard the evidence, and there's somebody dead but still nobody is arrested. This is the greatest picture of injustice that we could ever find.
LEMON: Yes, you know, listen. Will is not here to defend himself. But I do have to say, you know, and a lot of people are commenting on line and you are commenting.
Will Cain is a great guy and Will and I talk all the time about these issues the same as we are talking off the air. And what people get mixed up out there in the viewing public is they think that there is some mark like there's one upsmanship going on and it's not. We are really trying to have a conversation where we get to the bottom of something.
So, he's not here to defend himself. But I do have to say, there are many people around the country who feel exactly like Will Cain does, and are their feelings not valid or not legitimate because they feel that way?
BRYANT: I think it plays into the stereotype to have the same kind of reckless conversation that Geraldo Rivera would say that he is just responsible, Zimmerman is, just the hoodie. You're dealing with, you're not even safe walking at home.
This young man was not in the club. He wasn't in the alley. He wasn't doing drugs. He was walking home.
And his greatest crime is walking home while being black. If in fact just as you argued in the last segment, if the roles were reversed and Mr. Zimmerman was African-American and Trayvon was Caucasian, I believe and most African-Americans believe that we'd already be rushing to court.
Will is asking for more evidence. Well, I believe that that's right and we all believe in due process, so let's take it to court and figure out what it is that we need to do in the next step.
LEMON: OK. Now, let's get to the rally. How many people do you expect to be there tomorrow.
BRYANT: Originally, it was just about 5,000, but I think we've mushroomed to about 25,000 people coming. Busses are coming from Howard University, from Florida A&M, from Morehouse and from Spelman. People are really becoming mobilized.
And I believe at the end of the day, Sanford, Florida, is going be this generation's Selma, Alabama. This is going be the birthing place of a new generation of civil rights, for the first generation of post- civil rights, we have the benefits of civil rights but never knew the sacrifice.
We didn't march with Dr. King. We don't know Bull Connor. We didn't face barking dogs. But now, injustice is right in our face.
Even with an African-American president --
LEMON: What about --
BRYANT: -- it is evident that racism is still alive.
LEMON: What about the Martin family? Will they join in?
BRYANT: Yes, they'll be marching with us. As well as Reverend Jackson is coming in.
BRYANT: Reverend Sharpton is coming in. And so many great grassroots leaders from across the country will be marching with us.
LEMON: Listen, the rhetoric is getting very heated because -- I want to talk about the New Black Panthers. It really what is viewed -- what is seen as putting a bounty out for George Zimmerman.
I would imagine as a reverend you would say at all costs avoid violence and vigilantism.
BRYANT: Absolutely, 3,000 percent. And I want to marvel and applaud the young people who are marching across the country. Hundreds of churches went to church. Members and pastors preached and sang and worshipped with hoods on, is that we have espoused non-violence taking on the Dr. Martin Luther king mantle of the community of the beloved and we absolutely believe in non-violence and we disagree with the Black Panther approach.
We believe in the due process. We just want Florida to step up to the plate and do their constitutional responsibility. Arrest Mr. Zimmerman because we already know he is the culprit.
LEMON: All right. Reverend Jamal, thank you. Jamal Bryant, appreciate it. All right?
BRYANT: Thank you.
LEMON: Coming up in our next hour, at 7:00 Eastern, we're going to look at the Trayvon Martin killing from all angles, from law enforcement, to legal, the role race may have played, and you're going to hear from the moms of young black males and the advice they give their children just to try and keep them from dying. Words are pretty powerful. They are raw and they are very emotional as well.
You want to watch this coming up at the top of the hour here on CNN.
LEMON: Coming up in our next hour, at 7:00 Eastern, we're going to look at the Trayvon Martin killing from all angles, from law enforcement to legal, the way race may have played. And you will hear from the moms of young black males and the advice they give their children just to try to keep them from dying. The words are pretty powerful. They are raw and emotional as well. You want to watch this coming up at the top of the hour here on CNN.
Your top stories are three minute as away, including Pope Benedict's pointed message to Catholics while presiding over a Mass in Mexico.
But first, each week CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta profiles innovators from all walks of life in all fields of endeavor. The program is called "The Next List." Next Sunday, he talks to Jose Gomez Marquez who is using toys to save lives.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOSE GOMEZ MARQUEZ, USES TOYS TO SAVE LIVES: I want to create the equivalent of what Lego is today for toys. I want to have not just the (INAUDIBLE) but the (INAUDIBLE) of democratized innovation in health care. I want to do that for medical technologies.
My name is Jose Gomez Marquez, and I use toys to make affordable medical devices.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Let's take a look at some of your top stories right now. A common sight in church pews across the country today, followers wearing hoodies in honor of slain Florida teen, Trayvon Martin. Many churches urging their congregations to sign petitions for the arrest of Martin's admitted shooter, a neighborhood watch patroller, who hasn't been charged. Martin was unarmed and walking back home from a store at the time.
Investigators for the U.S. military say the soldier accused of a massacre in Afghanistan returned to his base between rampages in two villages. Staff Sergeant Robert Bales could face the death penalty in a military court. He faces 17 counts of murder. The military is paying $50,000 in compensation for each victim of the massacre.
Police in Sharkey (ph), Mississippi, are looking for three men in the shooting death of a Mississippi State student late last night. Police say 21-year-old John Sanderson was shot several times and died at a hospital. Witnesses say they saw three men, believed not to be MSU students, running away from the campus dorm where the shooting happened. Police say they have a person of interest but won't release the name. The university president says this is the first-ever murder at Mississippi State.
In Mexico, Pope Benedict XVI led 400,000 Catholics in an open-air Mass. This is the pope's first trip to Spanish-speaking Latin America. In a message to the crowds, he asked Mexican Catholics to boldly promote peace across the country. Much to the onlooker's delight, the pope later donned a sombrero. Tomorrow, he travels to Cuba.
Up next, a debate the Supreme Court will take up this week that will affect you.
LEMON: Almost two years to the day since President Obama signed the health care overhaul into law, the Supreme Court will hear arguments on whether the sweeping changes are constitutional.
CNN's Kate Bolduan breaks down this week's debate, the outcome of which will affect every single American.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We are done.
KATE BOLDUAN, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): March 23, 2010, President Obama signed into law the signature achievement of his presidency, the Affordable Care Act, the landmark and controversial health care overhaul.
OBAMA: After all the votes have been tallied, health insurance reform becomes law in the United States of America.
(SHOUTING) BOLDUAN: Within hours, states across the country filed lawsuits challenging the law.
PAM BONDI, FLORIDA ATTORNEY GENERAL: This is about liberty. It's not just about health care.
BOLDUAN: Led by Florida, 26 states argued the law's central provision is unconstitutional, the so-called individual mandate. It requires almost every American to purchase health insurance by 2014 or pay a penalty.
Opponents say the Constitution's Commerce Clause does not give Congress power to force individuals to purchase a commercial product like health insurance they may not need or want.
Paul Clement is arguing on the behalf of the states before the Supreme Court.
PAUL CLEMENT, ATTORNEY FOR STATES CHALLENGING LAW: These issues are really central to whether the federal government can really regulate anything it wants to.
BOLDUAN: The government defends the sweeping reforms, arguing medical care is not a choice. That every American will health need care at some point in their lives. They also say the tens of millions of uninsured Americans are costing everyone else more, $43 billion in uncompensated costs in 2008 alone, according to government figures.
ELIZABETH WYDRA, CONSTITUTIONAL ACCOUNTABILITY DIRECTOR: No one is saying there is a right to free load off one's neighbor when you decide not to choose health insurance.
BOLDUAN: The stakes only grow larger with the Supreme Courts taking the case just months before an election.
MITT ROMNEY, (R), FORMER MASSACHUSETTS GOVERNOR & PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If I'm president, we are getting rid of Obama-care and returning to freedom.
BOLDUAN: And the election year blockbuster has again turned the spotlight to the justices themselves.
BOLDUAN: As with the Bush V Gore case in 2000, will the justices be criticized for letting politics creep into the courtroom?
THOMAS GOLDSTEIN, SCOTUSBLOG.COM PUBLISHER: While the health care cases have huge political overtones, obviously, I think the justices are probably put them to the side. The legal stakes are so high that I don't think they will pay attention that much, if at all, to the fact that it is occurring in an election cycle. They've just got to get the case right.
BOLDUAN (on camera): What we are talking about here is four separate issues being argued for six hours over three days. That rarely happens and shows just how important this case is. But even after these marathon public sessions, we still won't know the final outcome for likely three months.
Kate Bolduan, CNN, at the Supreme Court.
LEMON: All right, Kate.
And as Kate just said, the Supreme Court takes this on starting tomorrow. They've got 2700 pages to hash through. The big fight is over the law's central provision, the so-called individual mandate. This requires Americans to buy health insurance. It's set to take effect in 2014. And as it is written now, those who don't buy insurance would face penalties. What can we expect, when it's all said and done? The justices could strike down all or just parts of the law. That may mean throwing out the individual mandate, which some proponents of the law say is the lynch pen that makes the whole plan work. Now, they may also press pause on some of the larger issues and decide on them later. But whatever the outcome we will have to wait to hear their decision until June. The decision is in June.
No bride wants to get upstaged on her wedding day but that is what you get when you invite the queen of England to your wedding and she actually shows up. We are going "Globe Trekking" after the break.
LEMON: A former U.N. chief is trying to persuade nations to pressure Syria to end its crack down on pro-democracy activist. Kofi Anan met with the Russian president today in Moscow but each day that passes leads to more deaths.
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LEMON: Heavy shelling was reported today in Homs, Syria. Activists say 65 people were killed across the country as the government targets defectors and members of the Free Syrian Army. CNN can't independently verify the authenticity of the footage posted online.
Your wedding day is supposed to be one of the most memorable days of your life, but a British couple got the surprise of their lives when an unexpected wedding guest actually showed up.
CNN's international desk editor, Azadeh Ansari, is here.
Azadeh, who showed up?
AZADEH ANSARI, CNN INTERNATIONAL DESK EDITOR: You won't believe this, Don.
LEMON: I know the answer because I just said it.
I didn't when I read -- when I saw it.
ANSARI: Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip decided to grace the bride and groom on their wedding day. They were not wedding crashers. They were invited to the wedding. Here is some amateur video we are looking at of the actual exchange between the bride and the groom, Frances and John Canning. And Frances curtsied and you'll see here in a second, John will take a bow. But the way this unfolded was the queen was on a tour of official duty in Manchester on Friday. And the -- they were scheduled to have an event at the venue that the couple was having their wedding. So the couple said, you know what, I wonder if the queen will attend our wedding. So they sent a letter to Buckingham Palace and sure enough --
LEMON: She showed up.
ANSARI: She showed up.
LEMON: That's hilarious. Can you image that? I'd be like, all right, who are the doubles, right? Who hired the people to dress up like the queen of England?
ANSARI: But they said it was probably the best wedding gift.
LEMON: OK, this is in Kuwait. A very unfortunate woman. A Kazakhstan sports woman wins a gold medal and the wrong anthem plays.
ANSARI: Not only did the wrong anthem play, Don, it was the obscene version of the spoof -- the lyrics that played during the movie -- remember "Borat," the movie "Borat"?
ANSARI: She is a Kazakhstan national. We're looking at here, Maria Demetrienko (ph) --
-- and she won the gold medal in the 75 target event at the tenth Arab shooting championships in Kuwait. As she is standing there, in her moment of glory, with all of these competitors of hers standing around --
-- and what happens is they play -- the part that they actually -- I want take a -- if we can play the part.
ANSARI: It is in English, OK? It is played to the music of the anthem.
LEMON: Did anyone notice at the time?
ANSARI: They did. The event organizers apologized for -- they called it -- the snafu was due to a downloading error. And later they redid the ceremonies with the correct national anthem. If we have that, we can play that, too, if we have time.
LEMON: Listen, I hate to laugh, but one must have a sense of humor. It was her moment. She still won. But, you know -- it was "Borat" of all things. Geez, what were they thinking?
ANSARI: You're welcome.
LEMON: We appreciate it.
The New Orleans Saints and their fans expected to be put in time-out by the NFL. But they also lost their allowance and got their toys taken away as well. We are asking Jon Wertheim, from "Sports Illustrated," about the punishment and the message it is sending to other teams. That is next.
LEMON: March Madness almost down to the final four. And football's New Orleans Saints take a huge hit from the league office -- from the lead office, I should say.
Let's talk about it now with Jon Wertheim, senior investigative reporter for "Sports Illustrated."
The cover of S.I. right now, baseball preview issue, but we're still talking basketball here.
Jon, let's talk basketball. I should have gone with you, Kentucky and Louisville, so is Ohio State. And all we are waiting on right now is a game between North Carolina and Kansas. Is Louisville the surprise in this group? JON WERTHEIM, SENIOR INVESTIGATOR REPORTER, SPORTS ILLUSTRATED: Yes, Louisville is the surprise but in the grand scheme of things we are still looking at the blue-chip programs. This happens every year. We all go looking for that Butler. We all want to see one of these 12 cedes make the Cinderella run. But when Louisville, Rick Patino (ph), storied-program, he's you're outside in the final four. That says something. Hey, a lot of people got their final four picks OK. It was everything that came before that ruined us.
LEMON: Let's look at our brackets. They're going to put it up. I can't see, but I think they're going to put it up now. There is mine. I had Duke winning it all. Oh well, too bad.
And there's yours. Michigan State out. But you went with Kentucky, Ohio State and Kansas. That's not bad, Jon Wertheim, I guess, since you're supposed to be an expert. Let's talk about the New Orleans Saints in a second. But look right here. That is where we are with this. What is going to happen, Mr. Wertheim? Give us a prediction?
WERTHEIM: I think Kentucky is absolutely the team to beat. Run away favorites. They look terrific so far. They won with ease today. It's there tournament to lose. John Calparni (ph) has obviously never won of these. I would be surprised if Kentucky didn't win.
How do you feel about LeHigh? Picking Duke to win this thing.
LEMON: You're asking me? I didn't even pick my own bracket.
I have no idea. Whatever you say, Jon Wertheim.
And you know, I've got to -- I've got to --
WERTHEIM: All Kentucky.
LEMON: It's going to happen in New Orleans and I got a little ahead of myself because I wanted to talk about the New Orleans Saints as well, those huge penalties, Jon, this week for the so-called bounty program where defensive players were rewarded for injuring opponents. It's a very serious story and it's very disheartening, especially for a team that had become America's team, especially after Katrina. Coach Sean Payton suspended for a season, a former defensive coach suspended from the league indefinitely. What do you make about the league's penalties?
WERTHEIM: They had to send a message. The one problem the NFL has is the issue of player health and safety. This bounty program, this pay- for-pain program completely counter to that. It sounds so trite but the cover up is worse than the crime. People say why is Sean Payton getting a year? He either lied or covered up information. They come with the investigation. You've got to be honest. A pretty strong to send right now. And yes, this -- and there -- nobody is talking about -- the players haven't even been punished yet. So this is going to be a really, really ugly year with the Saints. But truthfully, I don't see -- think you can take a whole lot of issue with that punishment.
LEMON: Hey, can you comment on this really quickly. Tiger Woods won the Arnold Palmer tournament in Florida, his first since 2009. I think it's his first PGA since 2009.
WERTHEIM: Yes, 30 months now. We get the return of madmen and Tiger in the same day.
Everybody thinks Tiger Woods' problems were about the sex scandal and the divorce, and really it was physical. For him to be back out there and winning events, Master starts -- we're two weeks away from the Masters and suddenly the PGA is very interesting. What was missing for Tiger was the aura, this closing. To win this event really sets him up. The PGA looks a lot different than it did a week ago.
LEMON: All right, Jon Wertheim.
Thank you, sir. Really appreciate it.
WERTHEIM: Thanks, Don.
LEMON: We will talk about the Saints bounty and the ruling on that. Be sure to stick around at the top of the hour when "CNN Presents" investigates the program that paid rewards for hits that injured opponents. Plus, get a look inside the culture of an NFL locker room. That story and more straight ahead, "CNN Presents," 8:00 p.m. eastern, right after this broadcast.
A lot of well-deserved focus lately on the Trayvon Martin case but there is a murder in California that deserves attention as well. A woman -- of five, five children, beaten to death in her living room and a threatening note left behind calling her and her family terrorists. That story in two minutes.
LEMON: An Iraqi woman who was viciously beaten in her Southern California home has now died of her injuries. Her family believes she was the victim of a hate crime. 32-year-old Shana (ph) Himidi was taken off life support yesterday. On Wednesday, she was found on the floor of her suburban San Diego home unconscious and bleeding by her teenaged daughter.
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FATIMA AL HIMIDI, VICTIM'S DAUGHTER): You know, I just found her on the floor, as I said, you know, drowned in her own blood.
(END VIDEO CLIP) LEMON: The family has been in the United States since the mid '90s. The threatening note was discovered close to where she was found, telling the family to go back to Iraq, calling them terrorists. A similar note had been found a week earlier but wasn't reported. Police have not yet said whether they were threatening -- or treating the case -- excuse me -- as a hate crime. Social media users have compared it to the Trayvon Martin killing in Sanford, Florida.