Return to Transcripts main page

THE SITUATION ROOM

Misconduct at FBI; Republican Opposition to Obamacare Slipping?

Aired February 21, 2013 - 18:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Happening now, a CNN exclusive: shocking misbehavior by FBI employees. A deadly shooting and a fiery crash on the Las Vegas Strip. A dramatic twist in the Oscar Pistorius case. The lead detective is charged with attempted murder. Jimmy Carter tells CNN his grandson clinched the election for President Obama. Plus, fish fraud. There's a good chance you're not getting what you think.

I'm Wolf Blitzer. You're in THE SITUATION ROOM.

It's a laundry list of bad behavior, some of it even criminal, including mistresses, nude photographs, check fraud, and sexual favors. CNN has learned all of this and more is contained in confidential FBI internal reports of misbehavior by FBI employees.

Drew Griffin of CNN's Special Investigations Unit has an exclusive report for us.

Drew, there's some pretty incredible stuff in all of this.

DREW GRIFFIN, CNN INVESTIGATIVE CORRESPONDENT: Wolf, this is an example of, it can happen anywhere, even at the FBI, where they're continuously warned what not to do at work.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

GRIFFIN (voice-over): The FBI's motto is fidelity, bravery, integrity. Agents take down bank robbers.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Shots are being fired.

GRIFFIN: And the mob. The FBI's polished image kept in the spotlight by countless TV shows and movies.

UNIDENTIFIED ACTOR: I'm with the FBI.

GRIFFIN (on camera): But there's another side to the FBI contained in these confidential internal records obtained by CNN that show serious misconduct by employees and even supervisors.

(voice-over): Assistant FBI Director Candice Will oversees the agency's Office of Professional Responsibility. She sends out the reports four times a year to all 36,000 employees.

CANDICE WILL, FBI ASSISTANT DIRECTOR: We do our very best. We don't, obviously, if you know anything about our quarterlies, and they're not a public document, but we know that doesn't mean that CNN doesn't have a copy -- there are no names. There are no locations. There are no job titles. We do our very best to sanitize the quarterlies so that the employees' identity is protected, while imparting as much knowledge as we can about what happened, so that employees can learn about it.

GRIFFIN: CNN obtained these summaries from the last year that include an employee who hid a recording device in a supervisor's office and did an unauthorized search of that office, another who was involved in a domestic dispute at a mistress' apartment, in which the police were called. Another hid or destroyed electronic evidence. And one other employee repeatedly committed check fraud.

And then there's the employee who married a drug user/dealer and lied about it. All of them were fired.

(on camera): Knowing what this agency does, knowing what this agency is about, how can anybody be so stupid?

WILL: Well, you know, it's funny you say that, because we do we look at our cases and we are struck sometimes. I have been doing this a really long time. I have been doing this nine years at the FBI, and as long as I have been doing it, and there are days when I think, OK, I have seen it all, but I really haven't. I still get files and I think, wow, I never would have thought of that.

GRIFFIN: But I have got to tell you, I don't think I would ever bug my boss' office, especially if my boss was an FBI agent.

WILL: Oh, I know. It's extraordinary. I agree. There are some that really do just kind of take the cake. And that was one where, you know, planting a recording device and rifling through a briefcase and then lying about, that's why this employee -- that's why that's a former employee.

GRIFFIN (voice-over): The internal reports show a 14-day suspension for the employee who paid for a sexual favor at a massage parlor. Using a personal cell phone to send nude photographs to other employees got a 10-day suspension. But there was only a five-day suspension for the employee who repeatedly used a government-issued BlackBerry to send sexually explicit messages to another employee at work.

These actions follow misconduct we reported two years ago that included sleeping with informants and viewing pornography on bureau computers.

(on camera): Is that enough punishment for this kind of behavior?

WILL: Keep in mind that if you lose a week's pay, that hurts, or two weeks' pay in some of those cases. And we have seen a rash of sexting cases and nude photograph cases, and people misusing their BlackBerry for these reasons. And we are hoping that getting the message out in the quarterlies is going to teach people, you can't do this stuff.

You know, when you're given an FBI BlackBerry, it's for official use. It's not to text, you know, the woman in another office who you found attractive or to send a picture of yourself in a state of undress.

GRIFFIN (voice-over): In the last three years, the FBI disciplined 1,045 employees; 85 were fired. And Will says the internal warnings sent out by her office do deter bad behavior.

WILL: They do learn, because I have had employees e-mail me, stop me in the hallway, call me and say, you know, I didn't know you couldn't do that.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BLITZER: Drew is joining us now.

Drew, what do the employees say about this bad behavior?

GRIFFIN: You know, we reached out to the FBI agents association, who told us really the same thing that Candice Will at the FBI told us. Although this looks really bad, you need to keep in mind that the ratio of disciplinary issues among FBI agents especially are among the lowest in the federal government and the private sector. We're really talking about, Wolf, a small fraction of people doing some incredibly stupid things.

BLITZER: Very stupid, indeed. Drew Griffin, thanks very much. Drew Griffin and our Special Investigations Unit, Kate, doing an amazing, outstanding jobs.

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Two great reports today. Drew is working double duty today.

(CROSSTALK)

BLITZER: You have got some new information on Republican opposition to Obamacare maybe slipping a little bit?

BOLDUAN: There may be some new cracks in that opposition, Wolf.

Six Republican governors have already agreed to the provision expanding Medicaid. And now Florida's Rick Scott, the governor there, who campaigned aggressively against the president's health care law, he is the seventh.

CNN's national political correspondent, Jim Acosta is here with more details.

So, Jim, what's behind the suddenly reversal?

JIM ACOSTA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, it is another sign that the president's health care law may be here to stay, Kate and Wolf. Republican governors who once vowed to strike it down are now starting to say, sign me up for a big part of the law. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ACOSTA (voice-over): This is one flip-flop you won't find on a Florida beach. The state's Republican governor, Rick Scott, has gone from trying to erase the president's health care law to embracing one of its key provisions, its massive expansion of the Medicaid program for the poor.

GOV. RICK SCOTT (R), FLORIDA: I want every Florida family to have access to high-quality health care. And so we have a choice, OK? And it's not an easy choice, OK? But my job is to worry about every Florida family.

ACOSTA: Even before President Obama signed the bill into law, Scott was tapping into anti-Obamacare outrage to advance his political career.

NARRATOR: You could end up with government bureaucrats taking away your choices.

ACOSTA: First as a health care executive airing TV ads warning of government rationing.

SCOTT: I have been pretty tough on the president, but he asked for it.

ACOSTA: Then running for governor of the state that led the charge against the act at the Supreme Court. Even after the law was upheld, Scott promised he would stand against its Medicaid expansion.

SCOTT: Don't put more people on a government program that will always run out of money and ration care.

ACOSTA: Health care advocate Joan Alker says the reason for the reversal is simple. To provide coverage to 16 million uninsured Americans, the government is offering the Medicaid money at no cost to the states.

JOAN ALKER, GEORGETOWN CENTER FOR CHILDREN AND FAMILIES: I think, you know, this is a time for common sense over politics. And there is federal money on the table here, and the governors, I think, are beginning to realize that they should accept it.

ACOSTA: Scott joins a growing list of GOP governors from a total of seven states making the same move, from Arizona Jan Brewer, who once famously stuck her finger in the president's face.

GOV. JAN BREWER (R), ARIZONA: Can we simply wag our finger at the federal government? Trust me, I tried that once. In short, the Affordable Care Act isn't going anywhere.

ACOSTA: To Ohio Governor John Kasich.

GOV. JOHN KASICH (R), OHIO: I can't look at the poor, I can't look at the mentally ill, I can't look at the addicted and think we ought to ignore them. ACOSTA: But Tea Party leaders say they're not waving the white flag over health care just yet.

TIM PHILLIPS, AMERICANS FOR PROSPERITY: I think in the long- term, we can overturn it. I do.

ACOSTA (on camera): You really -- you think you can?

PHILLIPS: Time is on our side in this respect. It really kicks in, in 2014, the full impact of it. Millions of Americans are going to lose their private insurance.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ACOSTA: But we should point out, there are plenty of other big- name Republican governors, like Rick Perry of Texas, who are blocking the health care law's expanded Medicaid coverage.

And even those governors who are taking the Medicaid money say there are parts of Obamacare that still make them sick. And as for the case down in Florida, the reversal down there, still depends on what the legislature does. They have to sign off on what Rick Scott wants to do with Medicaid.

BLITZER: But there are cracks among those Republican governors.

ACOSTA: You know, the president has talked about this, about whether or not the Tea Party fever is breaking among some conservatives out there, and perhaps this is a sign of that, that when these governors see this money on the table, and then they decide to go for it because they realize they're going to cover a lot of people.

BOLDUAN: Especially Rick Scott. I remember interviewing him when he was just kicking off his campaign, and that was -- this was the center of his campaign for governor.

ACOSTA: This was the reason why Rick Scott is the governor of Florida.

And for this to occur -- now, keep in mind he's running for reelection next year, John Kasich in Ohio running for reelection next year. The Tea Party folks that we were talking to today say, well, maybe that has something to do with it, and it might be smart politics in the long run. If you want to appeal to swing voters out there, accepting Medicare money might not be a bad idea.

BLITZER: Might be the right thing to do for the people in their states as well.

ACOSTA: And they may be feeling that as well.

BOLDUAN: We will have to see what happens in the legislature. Jim Acosta, thank you.

ACOSTA: You got it. BOLDUAN: Another wild story today, a shooting, a fiery and deadly six-cash crash, and now an intense search for a luxury SUV, all of this happening in the heart of one of America's top tourist destinations, the Las Vegas Strip.

That's where CNN's Miguel Marquez, he is there.

Miguel, what's the latest?

MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The latest is the sheriff just held a press conference here to say that they now believe that all of this began in the valet section of the Aria hotel on the Vegas Strip. It led out into the street and became deadly.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Horrific nature, the fiery end to this horrible accident.

MARQUEZ (voice-over): A shocking shoot-out on the Vegas Strip in a city not easily shocked.

Police say it started at 4:30 a.m. Someone in a black Range Rover with dealer plates fired into this Maserati, killing the driving, causing it to go out of control. The Maserati continued through an intersection and then smashed into this car. Hard to tell, but that is a taxicab. It burst into flames. The driver and passenger trapped inside died.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is -- investigating the engineering and mechanicals of that vehicle to determine why it exploded and why it started on fire immediately.

MARQUEZ: And still on the loose, the black Range Rover with dealer plates, a common vehicle here, police warning citizens the occupants are armed and dangerous.

DOUG GILLESPIE, CLARK COUNTY SHERIFF: Make no mistake, we're going to pursue these individuals. This act is totally unacceptable. And we are going to make a very clear message to these individuals in regards to that.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

MARQUEZ: Now, one thing to keep in mind, the car that exploded into flames, and, literally, the police describe it as exploding, they believe that it was not a propane tank, as they had earlier thought. It was just the force of that Maserati hitting that taxicab that made it explode.

They also say that there's now a multi-states manhunt for the occupants of that SUV, of that black Range Rover -- back to you guys.

BOLDUAN: Clearly, they would love any help they can get from the public in trying to track that Range Rover SUV sport down. Miguel Marquez, thanks so much, Miguel. BLITZER: Sentencing a high-profile case in Illinois. The former police Sergeant Drew Peterson was ordered to serve 38 years in prison, yes, 38 years in prison, for the murder of his third wife. Her death in 2004 was initially ruled an accidental bathtub drowning, but after Peterson's fourth wife, Stacy, disappeared in 2007, the case was reopened and Peterson was charged with murder and conspiracy, convicted. Stacy Peterson still has not been found.

BOLDUAN: And there are lots of frayed nerves on Wall Street after stocks suffered their biggest two-day drop so far this year. Quite a roller-coaster. The Dow, the Nasdaq, and the S&P all lost ground again today and they're on track to post their worst week of 2013. The good news, they're still up at least 3 percent for the year.

BLITZER: He was a powerful Republican senator, she was the daughter of one of his Senate colleagues. Now new revelations of a one-night stand and a secret son born decades ago.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BLITZER: A one-night stand more than three decades ago has been revealed and it involves a powerful former Republican senator, the daughter of another Republican senator, and it turns out they had a son together.

CNN's Brian Todd is piecing it all together for us.

What are you finding out?

BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Wolf and Kate, this is something you might see in a Hollywood version of a Washington political drama, two families, iconic in the Senate, royalty in the Republican Party, and infidelity along ago between those two families produces a child out of wedlock. It is a deep secret for decades, and because someone was apparently about to go public with all of it, now it blows up.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

TODD (voice-over): He was an immensely powerful and influential senator, a Republican icon who voted to impeach President Clinton over the Lewinsky scandal.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Domenici, guilty.

TODD: At the time, New Mexico's Pete Domenici called Clinton's behavior tawdry. He said truthfulness is the first pillar of good character.

MATT COOPER, NATIONAL JOURNAL: I think there's an element of hypocrisy here, no question. TODD: Matt Cooper of the "National Journal" says that now because we're now finding out that while Domenici was blasting Bill Clinton, he was involved in a bit of tawdriness of his own, hiding from everyone, including his own family, that he fathered a child out of wedlock several years earlier. And it had been with the daughter of another Republican legend, former Nevada Senator Paul Laxalt. Pete Domenici and Michelle Laxalt have just issued statements acknowledging they are the parents of 34- year- old Adam Laxalt, a Las Vegas attorney.

Domenici says his family has been aware of this for several months. Quote, "My past action has caused hurt and disappointment to my wife, children, family, and others. I deeply regret this and am very sorry for my behavior."

(on camera): What do you make about the revelation and the timing so many years later?

COOPER: Well, it seems like someone forced their hands. Someone was going to write about it. So they decided they would come out and be forthright about it.

TODD (voice-over): Indeed, Michelle Laxalt says in her statement, "Recently information has come to me that this sacred situation might be twisted, rewritten out of whole cloth and shopped to press outlets large and small in a vicious attempt to smear, hurt, and diminish Pete Domenici."

Michelle Laxalt and Domenici sent those statements to the "Albuquerque Journal" newspaper, but it's not clear if the journal was the entity that would have taken the information public.

The journal's John Robertson wrote an article on it, but declined an interview with CNN and refused to explain any further. Six years ago, when their connection was still largely secret, Michelle Laxalt appeared on CNN's "Larry King Live" defending Pete Domenici. He had been involved in a scandal over the firing of U.S. attorneys.

MICHELLE LAXALT, DAUGHTER OF EX-SENATOR PAUL LAXALT: Senator Pete Domenici is a totally honorable man. When you're attacking the integrity of someone who has been in public service for his entire lifetime, great sacrifice, supporting no fewer than eight children and with the many sacrifices and the many contributions Senator Domenici has made not only to the country, but to the state of New Mexico.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

TODD: Michelle Laxalt now calls her liaison with Domenici -- quote -- "one night's mistake." Domenici retired from the Senate in 2009. Pete Domenici declined an interview with CNN. We could not reach Michelle Laxalt.

But their son, Adam Laxalt, e-mailed us earlier today, saying -- quote -- "I have lived my entire life as a private citizen and intend to remain one. I plan to address personal issues privately and will not be commenting or joining any public discussion" -- Kate, Wolf.

BOLDUAN: I feel really bad for Adam Laxalt in this entire thing. I mean, did you find out did he know that Senator Domenici was his father or is this even a surprise to him? TODD: It could be a surprise to him. It's very unclear. I e- mailed him back when he e-mailed me today, asking, did you know? He never replied to that.

Domenici and Michelle Laxalt have said in their statements that they did not want this revealed at all at any point and had to do it now. Michelle Laxalt has said in the statement that she raised him as a single parent and would only ask Pete Domenici to avail himself -- quote -- "for health-related purposes." So it's really not clear if she ever let Adam Laxalt know that he was the father.

BOLDUAN: Wow. We just did a story last week about Steve Cohen of Tennessee. It seems to be...

(CROSSTALK)

TODD: It's a bit of a tradition in this town.

BOLDUAN: Unfortunately, I guess. Brian Todd, thanks, Brian.

TODD: Sure.

BOLDUAN: So Michelle Obama is bringing a big name to her Let's Move campaign. Big Bird joined the first lady in the White House kitchen and in the East Room.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MICHELLE OBAMA, FIRST LADY: No matter what your age, it's important to get your body moving every single day to help keep you healthy.

UNIDENTIFIED ACTOR: Look, Mrs. Obama, I'm getting moving right now by jogging.

OBAMA: There's so many different activities you can do, indoors or outside.

UNIDENTIFIED ACTOR: Now I'm jumping to get moving.

OBAMA: Just find an activity that you like.

UNIDENTIFIED ACTOR: And now I'm dancing.

OBAMA: Good for you, Big Bird. Get moving. It's good for you.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BOLDUAN: I really wish Wolf could do that -- I wish you could just reenact that entire thing right there.

It wasn't that long ago, you will remember, that Big Bird was in the political limelight for a very different reason. Here's a reminder.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) MITT ROMNEY (R), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I like PBS, I love Big Bird. Actually like you, too. But I'm not going to -- I'm not going to keep on spending money on things to borrow money from China to pay for.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BOLDUAN: Big Bird ended up in an Obama campaign ad, which Sesame Workshop asked to be taken down, and it looks like Big Bird has clearly moved on.

BLITZER: Certainly has.

All right. He's charged with attempted murder. He's also a police detective and until today he was leading the Oscar Pistorius murder case. Coming up, details on a shocking new twist.

Plus, why Jimmy Carter says his grandson clinched President Obama's reelection. The former president is talking to CNN and his grandson will join us live right here in THE SITUATION ROOM. That's coming up.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BLITZER: A dramatic twist in the legal drama surrounding the murder case involving the Olympic star Oscar Pistorius. It turns out the lead investigator is now facing attempted murder charges himself, and he's been pulled the off the case.

BOLDUAN: We also have something you won't see so anywhere else. Tom Foreman is about to take us on a virtual tour of the home where prosecutors say Pistorius murdered his girlfriend on Valentine's Day.

But, first, let's get to CNN's Robyn Curnow. She has today's developments in the court from Johannesburg.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ROBYN CURNOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Wolf and Kate, as Oscar Pistorius spends another night in prison, some extraordinary developments in this case that is already playing out like some sort of television drama. Of course, Oscar Pistorius trying to get bail, trying to avoid spending the next six to eight months behind bars.

But take a listen to what happened today. Photos and videos are all that friends and family have to remember Reeva Steenkamp more than a week after she was shot to death by her boyfriend, her dreams shattered.

GINA MYERS, FRIEND: So excited to have kids.

CURNOW: Gina Myers was her best friend.

MYERS: She actually -- she, the irony of it is she actually sent me a message in the beginning of the month, and she said, G., this month is going to be amazing and it's going to change our lives forever.

CURNOW: The hot and stuffy courtroom exploded with flashbulbs again as Oscar Pistorius came in. Previous days, he was visibly emotional, frequently crying, today, frozen, immobile as his lawyers challenged investigators in his effort to be freed on bail, saying if Pistorius really wanted to kill his girlfriend, he could have done it in the bedroom, that her empty bladder proved she went to the bathroom in the middle of the night, that Steenkamp probably locked the door frantically as she heard Pistorius shouting about a burglar.

And his lawyers insist that Pistorius carried her downstairs to take her to the hospital, desperate to save her life.

I was inside the courtroom the whole of today and obviously took a copious amount of notes, but the key issues came from the state's prosecutor towards the end of the day. They basically ripped apart Oscar Pistorius' affidavit.

In particular, they pointed out some forensic inconsistencies, such as, for example, why were the cartridges inside the bathroom when Oscar Pistorius alleges that he shot from outside the bathroom? Also, crucially, in fact, damningly, the state's prosecutor says Pistorius lacks an insight and realization of what he's done.

And in another twist in an already dramatic case, the lead investigator, who in past days has struggled to offer clear evidence Pistorius killed Steenkamp, was removed from the case because he himself is facing charges of attempted murder in an unrelated case.

So the prosecution now has put their head of detectives in charge and the bail hearing continues on Friday.

So many twists and turns in this case, it's very hard to sort of judge how the magistrate will rule in this. Legal experts I have spoken to say they kind of believe that Oscar Pistorius will get bail, but if he doesn't, just remember that his legal team can appeal and this can then follow through and continue in the high court -- back to you, Wolf and Kate.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BLITZER: All right, we're going to have a lot more on this story coming up later. Tom Foreman's got a virtual tour of the actual place where they lived.

BOLDUAN: We are going to take a look at that coming up.

But also ahead, a check of today's top stories, including a building demolition like you have never seen it before. Are the days of wrecking balls and huge implosions a thing of the past?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BLITZER: A horrible attack today in Syria's civil war. Kate's here. She's got that and some of the other day's top stories. Really horrible. BOLDUAN: A really horrible attack, Wolf. It involved at least three car bombs that went off in and around Damascus today. The biggest blast was in the heart of the city, near schools, the Russian embassy, and the headquarters of Syria's ruling Baath Party. At least 53 people were killed and 230 others were wounded.

An amazing story, a brave 4-year-old is being credited with saving her younger sister's life after a car crash that killed their mother. Washington State Police said little Arianna Rath pulled her 2-year-old sister, Lylah, from the car and covered them both with a blanket away from the wreckage. The girls were finally discovered by a passerby several hours later. Arianna was treated and released from the hospital. Her little sister, though, is still recovering. Amazing.

And take a look at this. The incredible shrinking building, you could call it. This time-lapsed video you're watching right here shows a new demolition technique being used in Japan. The upper floors rest on huge jacks as workman destroy the beams and columns on a lower floor. Then the jacks lower, allowing demolition to begin on the next floor and so on and so forth. It's quieter, cleaner, and in a city as dense as Tokyo, safer than using explosives.

Here's another good one. Wine lovers will either be intrigued or aghast at this. A California winery is experimenting with aging its bottles underwater. Forty-eight bottles sealed with corks and a special wax are in specially-designed crates that will spend the next three months on the bottom of Charleston, South Carolina's harbor. In May, they'll be hauled up, tested scientifically, and most importantly, tasted, which is also my favorite part about it.

BLITZER: The Pinot Grigio is being done like this, as well? Chardonnay? All of that?

BOLDUAN: It's -- I don't think our viewers understand that Pinot Grigio is your wine. It is your wine. They may be testing a Pinot Grigio. We will see in three months.

BLITZER: Let me know, please.

BOLDUAN: OK.

BLITZER: Coming up, Jimmy Carter's grandson will join us live. The former president says James Carter IV clinched the election for President Obama last November. We're going to talk about that, his recent meeting with the president and more.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BLITZER: So does President Obama have former president Jimmy Carter to thank for his re-election? The former president explains how his grandson, James Carter IV, may have clinched the race for the president. Listen to what he told CNN's Piers Morgan about that and his own relationship with President Obama.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) PIERS MORGAN, CNN ANCHOR: Last time we spoke, you sort of suggested you didn't have much of a relationship with President Obama. Have things improved or deteriorated or are they about the same?

JIMMY CARTER, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: About the same. You know, he and I respect each other. When he came to Atlanta this past week, his staff invited me to come to the speech. I was in Atlanta to make a speech myself. I couldn't go.

But he met my grandson, who's in the state senate. He met my grandson, who was the one who found the 47 percent tape and pretty...

MORGAN: Probably won him the election.

JIMMY CARTER: I personally think so. James, my grandson, who did that, was born a month after I moved to the White House. His parents were living in the White House.

MORGAN: So basically, Carter won Obama the election?

JIMMY CARTER: Well, I think so. That's kind of a prejudiced...

MORGAN: But it was a key moment, actually. I mean, do you think that was the pivotal moment in destroying Mitt Romney's chances?

JIMMY CARTER: I believe it was. It was something he could not deny, and it stuck with him for the rest of the election. And I think it was a major factor if not the major factor.

And when -- when James went to meet President Obama, President Obama ran across the room, embraced him, and thanked him, Piers, for the first time, by the way...

MORGAN: Really? This was last week, for the first time.

JIMMY CARTER: Yes. Yes, it was. So...

MORGAN: Did he actually say, "Thank you for winning the election"?

JIMMY CARTER: I don't think he said winning the election, but "thank you for helping me win the election." I don't know exactly what the words were.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BLITZER: Piers' full interview airs later tonight, 9 p.m. Eastern. But James Carter IV, the grandson of the former president is joining us now live from Atlanta.

James, thanks very much for coming in.

JAMES CARTER IV, PRESIDENT CARTER'S GRANDSON: Thanks for having me.

BLITZER: Tell us about your meeting, first of all, with President Obama last week in Atlanta.

JAMES CARTER: Well, it was before the event, and I was in line to, you know, to have your -- to shake hands and have your picture made with the president. There were several of us in line.

And my cousin, Jason Carter, who's a state senator here in Georgia, was in line ahead of me. And he, after he got his picture taken, told Obama that I was the one that had found the 47 percent tape.

And so then Obama said, "Hey, great, get over here." And then you know, kind of half embraced me, I want to say, put his arm around me. And we shook hands, and -- and he thanked me for my support several times.

BLITZER: What else did he say, the president?

JAMES CARTER: Well, he thanked me for my support, and then I had my picture made. And then my wife, who was also in line, he called her in, and we had another picture made.

And then afterwards, he talked to both of us and thanked us for our support. And he said, you know, "Now that I have a second term, we can make sure these kids get what they need." And the event was an event about pre-K, and so, you know, he was definitely on message with the policy piece. And that's the reason that I do what I do. So I was -- I was happy about that.

BLITZER: You were happy about that. Walk us through how you came up with that tape. It was at a fund-raiser in Boca Raton, Florida, at a hotel. How did you come up with that tape, where Romney spoke of that 47 percent?

JAMES CARTER: Well, I had been doing regular searches. I'm a researcher. And so I'd been researching videos and making sure that I knew all of the videos that were -- that were being posted online about Romney and some other Republicans.

And I found a video that had just a piece of what ended up being the 68-minute video. And I tracked down the person who had made it, who goes by Anonymous, and I introduced Anonymous to David Korn, and, you know, that's how it got out.

BLITZER: David Korn from "Mother Jones" magazine. And they released it.

Can you tell us, was it a guest, was it a waiter, was it a busboy, was it somebody who was at -- it was a closed-door meeting, obviously, the dinner.

JAMES CARTER: Well, I can say that it wasn't one of the people who had paid $50,000 to be there. But I'm not going to say anything more than that.

BLITZER: All right. And did -- did you realize, when you got that tape to David Korn of "Mother Jones" magazine, that it would have such a potentially pivotal impact in the election?

JAMES CARTER: No, I didn't, actually. I hadn't seen -- I didn't see the whole thing until after it -- until after it was actually posted online by -- by "Mother Jones."

But everything that I was doing at that point was trying to make some sort of a difference in the campaign, and so I obviously hoped that everything that I found would make a difference. It ended up being way beyond my wildest dreams.

BLITZER: How does it make you feel that your grandfather is so proud of what you did? What has he said to you?

JAMES CARTER: Well, he's -- on the day that it came out, he said that it was extraordinary, and that was in a very short e-mail. But I think it got the point across.

He's always been proud of all of the grandkids, but it is nice to have him be publicly proud of me, in front of all the people who watch him on these various shows. That's -- that's fun.

BLITZER: He certainly was proud of you in the interview with Piers Morgan. That will air later tonight on "PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT," 9 p.m. Eastern. James Carter, thanks very much for coming in.

JAMES CARTER: Thanks for having me.

BLITZER: Coming up, something you won't see anywhere else. Our own Tom Foreman, he's getting ready to take all of us on a virtual tour of the home where Oscar Pistorius' girlfriend was killed and the different accounts of what happened. This is something you're going to want to see.

And a fraud that's becoming more widespread in this country, and it involves fish.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BOLDUAN: Back to the case of Olympic star Oscar Pistorius, charged with murdering his girlfriend. Let's take a closer look at where and how it happened. CNN's Tom Foreman is here.

This home, Tom, is where this entire case, what it centers on.

TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. That's right, Kate. And to understand what happened, you have to consider the layout of this home and the two competing narratives that we're hearing.

Let's start in the bedroom, because that's where Oscar Pistorius' story begins and what he has to say about it. He says in the early morning hours of Valentine's Day, he and his girlfriend were in bed, and he got up in the darkness to go to the balcony to retrieve a fan and to close a window. Unbeknownst to him, he says, she got up, too, and went to the bathroom. Then he started to go back inside. That's where this whole story gets very, very strange. And I want to fly you through the house, to follow his story. He says, as he comes in off the balcony, the room is very, very dark, and he thinks that she's still lying in bed over there. Remember, he doesn't have his prosthetic legs on. He's moving around on what's left of his natural legs, so his angle would also be lower. But he does hear a noise down that hallway.

There have been break-ins before. There have been problems in the neighborhood. He's had death threats. He gets his pistol from under the bed, he says, and he goes down that hall.

As he rounds the corner, he sees an open window, and he hears noise inside that locked room in front of you where the toilet is. He thinks there's an intruder there, according to his story. He begins yelling out for the intruder to leave. He starts yelling out for his girlfriend, Reeva, behind him, to protect herself, and then he suggests he essentially panics. He's so afraid, he begins shooting through the door.

Only when he comes back into the room and turns the lights on to put on his prosthetic legs does he say that it occurs to him that maybe something else has happened, because she's not there. And he goes back to the bathroom and smashes the door down, and indeed she is there. And he starts calling for help, Kate.

That's his version of what happened in this house.

BOLDUAN: OK. So that's the defense's story, but then what do prosecutors say actually happened, in their view?

FOREMAN: Yes. Very different view. Very different. They say it was never dark and confusing here. The lights were on the whole time, and the reason the lights were on, is because they say this couple was having a big argument. An argument so loud, it could be heard for hundreds of yards by some witnesses who believe they heard it coming from that house.

At some point, they say, she did, indeed, retreat to the bathroom to get away from him, and she locked the door behind herself. That's when prosecutors said he took his pistol, he went down that hall, in the full light and with the full intent of pursuing her, and when he got to the locked door, he shot her through the door.

The details all fit for both stories in a strange way. That's what makes it so fascinating. And how those details are parsed out in court will determine whether or not he spends a lot of time in jail or not.

BOLDUAN: Yes. So fascinating. And we're only at the bail hearing phase of this case. That's the amazing part about it.

Tom Foreman, great work. Thanks, Tom.

BLITZER: CNN's Erin Burnett is going "OUTFRONT" on this at the top of the hour. Erin, what do you have? ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: All right, well, Wolf, as you know, the chief investigator on this story was removed today. It turned out that he himself is under investigation for murdering seven people, an allegation, of course, he denies, but that has caused him to be removed.

He's also the person, as you all know, who walked into that room and had contaminated feet, who said there was testosterone, and then had to admit, oh, maybe it wasn't testosterone. Who also missed a bullet that was in the toilet. Someone says that is going to cause a big black eye to the police in South Africa.

We talked to the national police commissioner and put those questions to her. Wolf, she says they have made no mistakes, they did a great job, and we are rushing to judgment.

Back to you.

BLITZER: We'll be seeing you at the top of the hour. Erin, thanks very much.

BOLDUAN: So chances are the fish you buy in the market or order at a restaurant may not be the fish you think. CNN's Mary Snow has been digging into this.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MARY SNOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The label says "red snapper," but a new study finds more often than not, the label may be wrong. The nonprofit group Oceana finds one-third of seafood is not what it's billed to be. Southern California ranked highest in mislabeling. Boston and New York also rank up there on the list.

It's no surprise to Frank Andia (ph), who's worked in his family's fish business for nearly 30 years. He welcomes the study.

FRANK ANDIA (ph), FISH SELLER: I'm happy that people look into it, because I'm totally legit, and it costs me money to be that way.

SNOW (on camera): Because?

ANDIA (ph): Because you want to do the right thing, and people say our prices are high. They're not. They're not. They are what they should be. You know, "Oh, this guy's got it for $10 a pound less." Well, there's a reason why.

SNOW: And that reason is?

ANDIA (ph): It's not real.

SNOW (voice-over): His gray sole, for example, sells for $35 a pound. He says it's an expensive business and blames lower-end stores and restaurants for cutting corners and selling fakes, maybe swapping red snapper for tilapia, which is cheaper.

Oceana did its testing with DNA samples and found, of the samples it took, snapper was mislabeled 87 percent of the time, tuna 59 percent.

What is the source of the problem? Oceana says it's unclear, because the system is so complex from the time the fish is caught until it's on your plate. But it says, although more than 90 percent of the seafood Americans eat is imported, less than 1 percent is inspected by the government, specifically for fraud.

The Food and Drug Administration, which oversees food safety, told us in a statement, it screens all seafood imports electronically, and some is physically checked, depending on potential risks.

It adds that mislabeling has been a concern for some time, because it is also a public health risk, saying, "The FDA has recently invested in significant technical improvements to enhance its ability to identify its seafood species, using state-of-the-art DNA sequencing."

JOHN MOONEY, CHEF: So that's a fluke. That comes from (UNINTELLIGIBLE).

SNOW: But Chef John Mooney says more needs to be done. He's among 500 chefs calling on the government for transparency in the seafood industry.

MOONEY: Who controls this? I mean, what is the process in making sure that it is what it is?

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SNOW: And Democratic Congressman Ed Markey of Massachusetts has been trying to pass legislation to improve transparency in the seafood supply chain, saying American fishermen have been undercut by foreign countries and companies. He says he plans on introducing a new bill to Congress in the coming weeks -- Wolf.

BLITZER: Mary, thank you.

Up next, the incredible sound of nature's real-life squeaky toy.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BLITZER: You can think of it as nature's real-life squeaky toy. CNN's Jeanne Moos has this.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Maybe this is what it sounds like when a frog has a frog in its throat. Actually, this is the defensive cry of what's being billed as the world's cutest frog. It was captured by wildlife enthusiast Dean Boshoff as he walked along a South African sand dune and heard a peculiar noise.

DEAN BOSHOFF, WILDLIFE ENTHUSIAST: When I heard that little squeak, I found him. I knelt down, couldn't believe the little sound that he was making.

MOOS: In his first week or so on YouTube, this desert rain frog had about 3 million views. All those views for something...

BOSHOFF: (UNINTELLIGIBLE)

MOOS (on camera): People commenting online say the frog sounds like it's swallowed a squeaky toy.

(voice-over): And we all know who loves squeaky toys. When Dean posted the video, he asked others to share their pets' reactions. There was some head butting and a lot of head cocking. There were attempts to get at the frog. And searches to try and figure out where that weird squeak was coming from. One smart dog even pawed, bit, and snatched a smartphone, playing the frog video.

(on camera): Thanks to fairy tales and movies, we tend to think of frogs not being cute until they get kissed and turned into princes.

(voice-over): But tell that to fans of the world's cutest frog, whose eyes were described as one admirer as looking like sunset on the lake.

But soon those endearing squeaks were replaced...

(SOUND EFFECT: COUGHING)

MOOS: ... by a jokester transforming the cutest frog into the coughing opera frog. What's next?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (singing): Valley of the giant...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ho, ho, ho.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No so giant.

MOOS: Jeanne Moos, CNN...

ANNOUNCER: This is CNN.

MOOS: ... New York.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

BLITZER: A zinger (ph). That's it for us. "ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" starts right now.