Return to Transcripts main page

CNN NEWSROOM

Eric Holder To Accord More Recognition To Same-Sex Couples; Search Launched To Find Harry Devert in Mexico City; New Storm Heading To Atlanta; Does Chris Christie Still Have A Presidential Chance in 2016?

Aired February 9, 2014 - 17:00   ET

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


DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: I really enjoyed watching you too as well. Thank you for that. You are in the CNN NEWSROOM. Thank you so much for joining.

At the top of the hour, obviously, we are going to talk about ice and snow. It is an emergency part two. It wasn't long ago that a rare winter storm and how this handled brought a major American city right to its knees.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hey, hey, hey.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: So that was just a little bit. That was Atlanta. Not even two weeks ago, people who lived there and the newspapers had fun calling it a snow jam when the reported one million cars were stuck on the highway around the city. In some cases for nine, ten, even 12 hours, is it even longer, we know that.

Other cities in the southeast were slammed as well, Alabama and Mississippi. That was the end of January. But look at this. The latest forecast from the national weather service puts Atlanta smack in the middle of yet another winter storm coming in just two days. Winter watches already in effect and at Atlanta was crippled, Georgia officials from the governor on down caught heat for being slow to act or for not listening to experts who predicted accurately how the storm would hammer that state.

Governor assembled a task force of weather professional emergency responders, law enforcement, school officials to help him respond to the next storm better and smarter. Now it looks like the next storm has come sooner and not later. And in just a minute, we are going to talk with a severe weather expert on that task force. But first, I want to tell you what is in store for Atlanta in the south.

Karen Maginnis shows us now. KAREN MAGINNIS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Don, across the southeast, winter weather is on the way. It is not going to be pretty. We start around the Ark-La-Tex, even into Tulsa, Oklahoma City may start out as ice. We have one weather system that is pushing down across the southeast. It is going to have moisture that it is going to meet up with. That is coming up from the Gulf of Mexico.

And as we see during the winter months, classic icing situations, there is that fine line where it transitions over to freezing rain before it becomes snow fall. This is one of those situations. Here you can see across northern Louisiana, southern Arkansas, icing through the Ozarks, also, the Tennessee river valley, Birmingham, Huntsville, could see a layer of ice before it is all said and done, also for Atlanta and into upstate South Carolina. Then we could see it transition over to snow. How much? Computer models haven't nailed everything down but it looks like anything between one to four inches right across this Tennessee Valley region. Then we go later into the forecast and it pushes towards the Carolinas. So, we are not finished.

Interstate 20 in the southeast is going to be treacherous., then through central Georgia, into South Carolina, North Carolina, maybe into south eastern Virginia. We could see this event in a broad area that is going to be very difficult to pin down but you need to stay aware. Could see troubles as far as airline traffic is considered too at the international airport. Back to you.

LEMON: Our question is -- thank you very much, Karen. The question is, is it going to be a repeat?

On the phone with me now from Atlanta, Glenn Burns. He is a chief meteorologist at our affiliate, our Atlanta affiliate WSB. He used to be my weather man until this past summer when I moved up here.

So, I miss your forecast. I want to say, Glen, that you have also become a key member of the governor's task force assembled to help the city avoid a repeat of that disaster two weeks ago. We have the forecast. There is ice and there is snow. It may hit Atlanta again. You have just gotten off a conference call with the task force. What are they doing differently this time to prepare, Glenn Burns?

GLENN BURNS, CHIEF METEOROLOGIST, WSB-TV, ATLANTA (via phone): Well, they are doing a great deal differently. This is a whole difference ballgame here. What we had two weeks ago was a minor event. This is likely to be a major event of rain, We are going to have then rain mixing with snow and sleet. And then you are going to have freezing rain, changing the rain back to freezing rain. It is going to be a major event. And the big, big difference here is going to be a much longer duration event.

Two weeks ago we had about four hours of snow and this could be about 30 plus hours of wintry precipitation across north Georgia. So, with that in mind, we just got off the meeting with the national weather service. The folks of the Georgia emergency management agency, the people from the Georgia department of transportation and this time we have had the local meteorologist involved, we have the school superintendants involved in this decision making process. And I think being on that same page, with everybody getting the same information is going to be key to how we respond.

LEMON: OK. So very simply, Glenn, are they ready? And your task force, will the task force be ready as well, Georgia officials, emergency responders, everyone.

BURNS: The task force is ready to go. But as Karen eluded to a little while ago in her weather report that we don't really know yet about the precipitation. We really not going to know how much is going to fall, what type and in what area until probably tomorrow where we will get new data in coming in from our new computer models. But we are all ready to go and ready to respond. But we really don't know which areas are going to need the most response.

I believe it is going to be in the Gainsville (ph) area perhaps, (INAUDIBLE) of the northeastern suburbs of Atlanta to the north Georgia mountains. That is an area that is really subject to some serious icing issues. So Georgia power is going to be in on that. We are going to have trees, we are going to have power lines coming going down and we are going to have major icing issues and we are ready.

LEMON: Glenn, OK. We will be watching. Glenn Burns with our affiliate WSB. He is a chief meteorologist there, also part of the governor -- Georgia governor's new task force who try to help deal with situations and severe weather like this.

We will be watching Glenn, we will get you back to see how you guys respond. Thank you very much.

Moving on now. Right now, a desperate search for a missing American under way on two continents, a frantic mother waiting in New York for any word on her beloved son. 32-year-old Harry Devert ditched his job and fiancee and set out on a motorcycle journey, right? Well, he planned to ride to the tip of south America. He was in a volatile part of Mexico known for clashes between drug cartels and vigilantes when he was last seen. That was on January 25th.

Alexandra Field, tracking the search for the missing American. And tell us what about this, there is a chilling text that he sent shortly before he went missing?

ALEXANDRA FIELD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Certainly, family and friends are very alarmed that they haven't heard from him. And especially given the text message, it is really the last time that his girlfriend heard from him. And here is what he said in that message, He said quote "just got an hour and a half long military escort out of some area. It was too dangerous for me to be." And he follows that up and he tells her that hopefully the two of them are going to talk tonight.

Now, Harry Devert had been staying west of Mexico city. He was riding his motorcycle. He planned to ride down to (INAUDIBLE) beach town, should have taken about five hours. No one has heard from him. Authorities in Mexico tell CNN that they are aggressively searching for him. And they are searching for him in the state of (INAUDIBLE) which we know is a dangerous place. It is a place where kidnapping and murders have really spiked since the drug war.

LEMON: My goodness. So, people always look to family for reaction and so see how they are doing and if there is anything that they can do to sort of figure out what happened in the last moments he was seen. Are we hearing from the family?

FIELD: Deeply concerned as you would be, as you would imagine. But right now, really, what they want is help. They are looking to Mexican officials. They are looking to officials here in the U.S. to give them some sort of help to track on any leads which could potentially bring them to Harry. Here is what his mother had to say.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

ANN DEVERT, MOTHER OF HARRY DEVERT MISSING IN MEXICO: He dropped off the face of the earth it seems and that is not who he is. And I can only think that he is hurt and needs us because there is no way he wouldn't have gotten word out to us. And I just keep thinking my life makes no sense without him in it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FIELD: Devert has traveled extensively. He blogs about his adventures. But his mother and his girlfriend both say that no matter where he is, and he has really been all over the world, he has always been careful to stay in contact or let them know when he won't have access to their cell phone or internet.

LEMON: This is where the international news organization maybe, this will help just getting the word out.

Thank you very much, Alexandra Field.

Moving on now, a man who claims too that he spent months drifting in the Pacific Ocean could return home tomorrow. Jose Salvador Alvarenga's boat wash the shore in the marshal island nearly two weeks ago.

Our Miguel Marquez has been following the story. Doctors must clear him medically before he is allowed to return home to Mexico. The owners of Alvarenga's boat says the fisherman along with another man disappeared in late 2012. Alvarenga claims the other man died after four months at sea. We will follow up for you.

Also, heard the talk about Hillary Clinton's possible presidential bid in 2016, right? Will a new book help her or hurt her chances? That debate is next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: Beginning tomorrow, men and women and same-sex marriages will be recognized as legal and legitimate for all matters that concern the federal government, at least. The Attorney general Eric Holder announced that last night right here in New York.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) ERIC HOLDER, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: On Monday, I will issue a new policy memorandum that will for the first time in history formally instruct all justice department employees to give lawful same-sex marriages full and equal recognition to the greatest extent possible under the law.

(APPLAUSE)

LEMON: It is a major milestone for gay rights in his country. The expansion of federal benefits will include that 34 states where same- sex marriage is not yet legal.

So, time to talk about this and in to politics, get reunited with my two favorite political commentators, don't tell anybody, OK, Lz Granderson and Ana Navarro.

The band is back together you all.

ANA NAVARRO, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: It feels like a family reunion.

LEMON: Hey, how you all doing?

LZ GRANDERSON, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Excellent.

NAVARRO: I'm doing great. Nobody knows where I am.

LEMON: I know. I saw your picture, you too.

Before we start talking about politics, let's talk about this Eric holder's same-sex marriage.

Ana, to you first, is it over now? I mean, is this sort of like marijuana or like, you know, is it just over. Get used to it. It is going to happen throughout the country.

NAVARRO: Don, I think it was over the day the Supreme Court decided. You know, to in favor of gay rights. This is happening. There are gay families all over America. There are gay couples living happily as a family all over America. You cannot take these rights away.

I think what Eric Holder announced yesterday is one more step and an extension of the policy they said they were going to have. That they were going to extends federal benefits to people who got married. This is one benefit, they not been extended yet. They already have a tax benefits. They already have immigration benefits. So, they already having number of federal benefits and now they are going to have protection under the law. Under certain federal issues involving crimes, visitation rights, testimony in a federal court of law, et cetera.

So, the only thing I\m going to tell my gay friends is, if you are going to marry, if you are in Alabama and going to get married in New York and you are going to Mary a criminal, just make sure that the crimes he is committing are federal crimes, not state crime. (INAUDIBLE).

LEMON: All right, you are on your own with that comment too, Ana.

So listen. This is coming from a conservative who said it is about time across the country. Lz, I didn't plan to talk to you guys about this. This is just happened to be disturbing for you. Ana ate up all your time. If you can quickly give me a response and then we will move on and talk about Hillary Clinton.

GRANDERSON: Well, I would just say that, you know, it was over much earlier than that. It was over the day that the gay men and women, the drag queens, transgendered, stood up and stone walled and said enough. You know, Dr. King says no man are getting your back if you stand up straight. Back in stone wall, we stood up straight. So, this has been a long time coming.

LEMON: All right, moving on. Hillary Clinton now, officially on the political sideline. But she always is a hot topic in the political world. And a new book coming out this week says Bill Clinton's role will be crucial in what we all assumed will be her next run for the White House. Here is one of the book's coauthors today on "Meet the Press."

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

AMIE PARNES, COAUTHOR. HRC: STATE SECRETS AND THE REBIRTH OF HILLARY CLINTON: You know, they share different goals but they have different strategies of getting there. So, I think that is going to be an interesting moment to see how this plays out. If Bill Clinton can be the bill Clinton that he was for Barack Obama in 2012, she has it made. She can take it all wait to the White House. But I think if he is the Bill Clinton from 2008 that is a little bit of a precarious situation.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: So Ana, will Bill Clinton help or hurt Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign in 2016?

NAVARRO: Well first, let's just admit we don't know if she is going to be a Hillary Clinton presidential campaign in 2016. So this is a very premature conversation. But assuming there is, I think there are pros and cons. Certainly, there is a pro to having a political professional like Bill Clinton who has got a very wide and strong fund raising network all over the country. The big trick is how does he not overshadow her?

It is important that if Hillary Clinton runs, we are not judging her on her Clinton last May. We are judging her on her actions, her ideas and her proposals. So, she has got to stand on her own two legs and her own two heels.

LEMON: Yes. Listen, I was going to say, you want to make a wager on that. But then, if I had made a wager a month or two ago about Chris Christie, I would have been wrong because now we don't know what is going to happen, so, you probably know that.

NAVARRO: I mean, I'm Republican, I don't bet unless it is $10,000 darling.

(LAUGHTER)

LEMON: In case you don't remember, that was Mitt Romney 2012, you are on fire.

So Lz, let's get a little bit deeper there because Republican senator Rand Paul is a potential Hillary opponent and looking more likely than Chris Christie. because everyone said, it was going to be Chris Christie. He is already trying to make, you know, Bill Clinton an issue recently calling him a sexual predator from the Monica Lewinski affair. I mean, is this argument going to blind?

GRANDERSON: You know, I don't know senator Paul at all, obviously. But, if he is willing to take advice, I would tell him this, stop it. Just stop it right now. If you are trying to be a serious candidate, if you are going to try and connect Hillary Clinton with Bill Clinton in a scandal that happens almost 20 years ago, if that is your best strategy, then you need to think about a new strategy.

If you go back and look at the Gallup poll, in 1998 when this whole scandal, when it came to his head, Bill Clinton had his highest approval rating, his highest. Not as lowest, his highest. So, if you think this is the strategy to derail Hillary Clinton's potential campaign, then you are just -- that is a very, very poor strategy.

LEMON: Yes.

OK, I want you, guys, to do me a favor, right? So Ana, can you just move your shoulders to the left a little bit so we can see behind you and Lz, move your shoulders to the right a little bit and just look at the opposite. It is too opposite spectrum. Can you see that? Look at Miami behind Ana and look at Chicago behind Lz and then look at the snow behind me. It is ridiculous. Ana, I'm coming where you are.

NAVARRO: Well, the good news is where you are, gay marriage is legal. So, let's just go ahead and get it done with you.

LEMON: I like having my own time.

GRANDERSON: Hey, it is legal here in Chicago as well.

LEMON: I like having my own money and keeping my own property. So, have fun. Get married. Everyone wants to get married. I love it.

All right, yes, because, ultimately, with many of that, those things come divorce. So, I know we have to go. We are going to get there, relax producers. So stand by guys.

Just when we thought the bus around Chris Christie was fading, someone else is now taking a slight at the governor. Up next here, why New Jersey's major newspaper said it made a mistake during Chris Christie's reelection campaign.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) LEMON: So we're talking politics with CNN commentators Lz Granderson and Ana Navarro. We have to make this one quick as you know. We reunited and we just felt we killed a lot of time last segment.

Let's head to New Jersey now and talk more about Chris Christie in this bridge shutdown story, about it made it but then there is a new developments now. The committee investigating the scandal meets tomorrow in the state's major newspaper said today that its decision to endorse Christie's reelection last fall was a bad idea. In the editorial page, editor's words, we blew this one. Yes, we knew Christie was a bully. But we didn't know his crew was crazy enough to put people's life at risk in Fort Lee as a means to pressure the mayor. We didn't know he would use hurricane Sandy aide as a political slash fund. And we certainly didn't know that Hoboken mayor, Dawn Zimmer, was sitting on a credible charge of extortion by the lieutenant governor.

Wow. Ana, is Chris Christie in deeper trouble than we first thought?

NAVARRO: Look, having your local newspaper be against you is never a good thing. Fortunately for him, there is increase of a smaller number of people reading newspapers much less their endorsements but -- and he has got much bigger problems than the New Jersey Star Ledger.

I think, you know, a lot of people are getting tired of talking about Chris Christie. In a way, that is not good for him. In a way, it is. We are just going to have to wait this out and see if the questions are answered. If he knew anything about this or was involved, he is in deep, deep trouble. If he didn't, it is a brand-new set of circumstances.

LEMON: Listen. Ana has a point. A lot of people have been saying, you know, people are tripping over themselves, Lz, to find some information about Chris Christie when all the evidence is not out yet. But this, as you said, you know, your local newspaper, it is nice to have that endorsement. The Star Ledger was a reluctant endorsement. Do people really care who gets support from editorial board now as Ana eluded to?

GRANDERSON: I don't think so, unfortunately, you know, for the reasons that Ana stated previously. You know, the readership is down. Newspapers have lost their influence in terms of what it appears. It has well its influence in terms of what has reported. So, as long as the Star Ledger are able to report the way that we have been talking for decades and decades in its field, then it is news pages would actually be more important than the editorial pages.

But, you know, it is way too early to start counting out Chris Christie. Even if he is found out to be would it be guilt, I think it is still way too early. There are so many other teams can come in to play that would keep him up and chance of being a top GOP presidential candidate. And more importantly, I look at the list and they are just as appear to be any person on the list of the top GOP candidates for potential GOP candidates that really stick out to be someone who can fill that void that Chris Christie is filling. LEMON: Since you are going there, can I jump in and talk about a poll and then maybe, you can expands us because there are recent polls that show that Chris Christie is losing support among Republicans. Rand Paul, gaining support when you talked about what he said about, you know, about Hillary Clinton.

I mean, should the party be concerned or happy that Rand Paul is on the move or on the rise? First quickly, LZ, and then Ana.

GRANDERSON: Nobody should be happy about it because he is not electable when in terms of general election. He might be able to get the base fired up, but he is not going to be seal the deal. I'm really surprised there are two names not on that list real quick. The first would Scott Walker. I think he is a very credible candidate that could really push forward with the GOP is looking to do. And the other one is Mitt Romney because he can run on the I told you so campaign. And while it may sounds funny, Reagan did it and it worked for him.

LEMON: Ms. Navarro?

NAVARRO: Let's put a Kabosh on this Mitt Romney running again in 2016 idea because I know that we are all fascinated by it, but it is so, so, so, done. Just put a pork on Romney, inside Romney, it is over.

But look, there is no, what that poll shows is that the GOP is erase is wide open for 2016. You have four candidates between 10 and 14. It is not like anybody's in the 20s or 30s. So, it is a very wide open race, I wouldn't say that it is a big rise by Rand Paul. What I would tell you is that there are people who occupy some of the same space as Chris Christie folks like Scott Walker, folks like Jeb Bush, folks like Paul Ryan, who if he becomes in eligible to run or drops out or says I'm not going to do this, do stand something to gain. But right now it is an open field.

LEMON: I was looking at the date to make I had it right. It is just February 9th, 2014. We still have a ways to go, so, we shall see.

Thank you guys. Good to be back here with you.

GRANDERSON: Absolutely.

LEMON: Lord, we will see. It will be fun. You will make it more interesting. We have to go. Thanks.

Lots of emotion and lot of tears this weekend at a Florida murder trial and we now know that jury could get the case by the end of the week. Details next.

NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: And you are going to want to see how one college basketball game ended last night. I'm Nick Valencia here in Atlanta. We'll have the video for you after the break.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: Michael Dunn could learn his fate this week in his quick- moving, high-profile murder trial. Fighting back tears and visibly shaking on the witness stand, Dunn's fiancee Rhonda Rauer testified yesterday, giving jurors her account of what happened the night teenager Jordan Davis was fatally shot after a dispute over loud music.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: Did the defendant say anything about the music when he parked the car next to the red car?

RHONDA ROUER, MICHAEL DUNN'S FIANCE: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: What did the defendant say?

ROUER: I hate that thug music.

UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: What did you hear?

ROUER: I heard pop, pop, pop.

UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: When you heard those noises, did you know what they were?

ROUER: No, I didn't.

UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: When you woke up, was the television on?

ROUER: Yes it was.

UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: And did you happen to see something on the news?

ROUER: Yes, I did.

UNIDENTIFIED ATTORNEY: At that point in time, did you learn that a teenager had been killed at the Gate (ph) gas station?

ROUER: Yes, I did.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

LEMON: Although a list of up coming witnesses has not been released, testimony has been set to continue tomorrow morning at 9:00 am. And if convicted, Dunn faces up to life in prison. Make sure you stick with CNN; we'll follow that for you.

College basketball star getting heat for shoving a fan. The basketball player says there is more to this story, and we're going to find out what that more is now. Nick Valencia joins us from Atlanta. So Nick, you are going to be looking at this basketball controversy, plus some other big stories that are getting buzz right now. Are you going to start with the basketball? What's up with that?

NICK VALENCIA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, let's start with the basketball. Welcome back to you, Don. We miss you, it's good to have you back. LEMON: Thank you.

VALENCIA: Yes. Here are three stories to get you caught up on what people are talking about right now. Let's start in Lubbock, Texas, where last night, 19th ranked Oklahoma State Cowboys taking on Big 12 rival Texas Tech. About six seconds to go in the game, Oklahoma State's Marcus Smart goes up for the block, ends up out of bounds and look what happens next.

That push right there. He was given a technical foul. He stayed on the bench til the final buzzard. Now, Smart says the fan called him the n word, using a racial slur, and that is what led to the push. Big 12 officials said after the game they would review the matter and decide on Smart's punishment. Now Don, I know you're going to have some more reaction to this controversy coming up when you talke to Terrence Moore, I believe in a few minutes.

But we are moving on to some more stories creating some buzz. Number two, outrage created by AOL CEO not dying down. Tim Armstrong caused an uproar after his controversial comments about cutting 401 (k) benefits at his company. He blamed two staffers and their so-called distressed babies for costing AOL millions of dollars in benefits. He later apologized and reversed the cuts.

But today, one of those mothers wrote an op-ed for Slate.com, blasting the CEO for gross insensitivity. This is what she wrote: "I take issue with how he reduced my daughter to a 'distressed baby' who cost the company too much money. How he blamed the saving of her life for his decision to scale back employee benefits." More mothers' advocates are jumping onboard. We will keep following that fallout as it happens throughout the week.

Story number three, moving onto this controversial celebrity boxing bout between George Zimmerman and infamous rapper DMX. It has been called off. The potential match was seen largely as a publicity stunt and had generated strong backlash. The celebrity boxing promoter, David Feldman, posted on his Twitter account, "This was the wrong person to put in the ring and define celebrity boxing," referring to Zimmerman.

Those are three of the top stories. Getting you caught up on what people are chatting about. Lots to talk about, Don.

LEMON: Wrong person? Wrong people. This was a dumb idea to start with. Both those guys are trouble, and they need help, but not in the way that they were going to off the back of a dead teenager. That's how I feel about it.

VALENCIA: And you know, so many people coming out saying that you shouldn't been profiting off a back teenager. And that's the only reason why George Zimmerman was a so-called "celebrity." For killing a black teen.

LEMON: And DMX should know better. He should be ashamed of himself. Thank you. Appreciate that, Nick Valencia. It has been over three months since CNN's film "Blackfish" premiered. And there has been no shortage of fallout against SeaWorld. We're going to catch up on everything that's going on with that.

But first, you will probably know him as a rough and tough patriarch of the Orange County choppers family. But what you may not know about Paul Tuttle, Sr. is that he is a recovering addict. Our Dr. Sanjay Gupta gives you his story in today's "Human Factor."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Grinding, blowing things up and building bikes. It's what Paul Teutul Sr. star of the show "Orange County Choppers" does best.

But there was a time that Teutul's future didn't seem so bright.

PAUL TEUTUL SR., "ORANGE COUNTY CHOPPERS": Back in the day I kind of started early drinking and getting high and -- you know back then, you think that that stuff is going to go away as you get older and what it does it gets progressively worse.

GUPTA: As a younger guy Teutul and his buddies hit the sauce early and often.

TEUTUL: I could drink a Korda (ph) Whiskey at lunch time and then go back to work.

GUPTA: And after years of giving everything to alcohol he realized it all came down to a simple choice, live or die.

TEUTUL: I was pretty fortunate that you know, I was able to get in a 12-step program. I went nine years straight and I was afraid to miss a meeting.

GUPTA: And that's why Senior who's now been sober for 29 years continues to share his story.

TEUTUL: After 12 years of TV being myself everybody knows how (EXPLETIVE DELETED) crazy I am. So it's no secret. It's kind of like I always look at it, if I can get sober, anybody can.

GUPTA: Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN, reporting.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: I love that. Aiming for the gold! Are you watching the Olympics? A lot of people are. All eyes are on Sochi, you know. As the Americans leave their mark on the 2014 Olympic Winter Games. Team USA took bronze in the debut of the team figure skating competition. As a whole country, Russia earned its first gold of the Games.

And it was a big disappointment for American Bode Miller in the downhill. Man, he was a favorite. The heavy, heavy favorite ended up in 8th place. And on the slopes tonight, the men faced off in the individual normal hill ski jumping finals. Poland took the gold, its first medal of the games.

And then there are the pictures that we can't stop talking about. After capturing the gold in the women's slope event, Team USA Jamie Anderson tweeted this picture expressing her gratitude to family and friends. And meanwhile, American Ashley Wagner made her Olympic debut in the figure skating team ladies sports program. But her excitement turned to shock when she looked up at the board to see less-than- impressive scores.

Well, here's where everybody stands, all right? I'm not even going to do a spoiler. This is where everybody stands. Norway leads with seven medals, followed by the Netherlands and the U.S. with four medals. The two gold medals, courtesy of Team USA's sweep of the snowboard slope style. Canada and Russia also have four medals. So now you know.

All right let's talk now about the CNN film "Blackfish." It challenged the way marine parks, particularly SeaWorld, take care of their star performers: killer whales. A lot has happened since "Blackfish" first aired on CNN. That was back in October. But there has been outrage directed at SeaWorld, and outrage directed at the film "Blackfish" as well.

Martin Savidge has covered the controversy from the very beginning, and he joins us now. Martin, what's the very latest on this?

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN ANCHOR: Hey, Don, nice to see you back again. We aired that documentary beginning October 24th. As you just pointed out there. And when it ran, so many people watched, and there was so much reaction and there has been continuing reaction ever since. We thought we would catch you up to speed.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SAVIDGE (voice-over): 24 million people saw it on CNN.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The adult offspring never leave their mother's side.

SAVIDGE: Blackfish. Social media exploded with calls for SeaWorld boycotts. Demonstrators picketed SeaWorld parks and business partners. Musicians, including Trace Atkins, The Beach Boys and Barenaked Ladies cancelled SeaWorld performances. Young people were especially moved. These high school students put together a protest video, posting it on YouTube.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We just invite you to change your business model.

SAVIDGE: SeaWorld battled back, calling "Blackfish" grossly one-sided and the product of animal activists. The company declined repeated offers for an interview; instead issuing a written statement, saying, "The film is inaccurate and misleading and regrettably exploits a tragedy."

That tragedy was the death of veteran SeaWorld trainer Dawn Brancheau, who was killed in 2010 by a killer whale named Tilikum. The film implied Tilikum had been driven to madness by captivity. In January, Brancheau's family spoke out for the first time about "Blackfish," saying "Dawn would not have been a trainer at SeaWorld for 15 years if she felt the whales were not well cared for."

Mark Simmons, a former killer whale trainer, appeared in "Blackfish," but then went on to become one of the movie's most outspoken critics. He too turned down an interview but wrote: "The Blackfish crusade against SeaWorld and zoological care in general is engineered by a perfect marriage between sensational animal rights organizations and disgruntled ex-SeaWorld employees."

Despite all the controversy, SeaWorld said "Blackfish" hasn't hurt its business.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have to say, it hasn't affected our performance, our results. We just announced record fourth-quarter results and record annual results for the company.

SAVIDGE: Animal activists say behind the scenes, SeaWorld is worried, pointing to the company's costly full-page ads in top newspapers. And this recent addition to SeaWorld's web site, called "The truth about Blackfish."

Meanwhile, the company's largest investor sold half a billion dollars of company stock. And SeaWorld's own chairman sold more than $1 million worth of his SeaWorld investment. But financial analysts say both sales may simply just be routine transactions and not indicators of worries.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

SAVIDGE: And we should point out that last weekend, SeaWorld kicked off that controversial concert series, the one that a number of musicians had cancelled out of. Not all musicians did. In fact, despite the protests outside, it was said to be a record crowd, overflow crowd on the inside. So it would seem that the show, much like the controversy that Blackfish continues to smart, goes on. Don?

LEMON: All right. Martin Savidge, thank you. Martin, hunker down for that storm. You will be out there covering it, I'm sure. Good or bad, thank you sir.

More about Blackfish now later. You can see the entire Blackfish film that sparked the controversy. Blackfish airs 9:00 Eastern right here on CNN.

Coming up, an attack on UN aid workers sends women and children running for their lives. We'll have the details for you next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ROSA FLORES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: With your Weekly Five, I'm Rosa Flores. And in this corner, Betty White? The former Golden Girl will guest star on USA's wrestling show Monday Night Raw. The Emmy-winning actress stars in TV Land's "Hot In Cleveland" which starts its fifth season next month.

Calling all dogs! The Westminster Dog Show starts tomorrow at Madison Square Garden in New York. For the first time in show history, mutts are making their mark. The mixed breeds got to compete yesterday in the agility field.

Tuesday, President Obama welcomes French president Francois Hollande to the White House. Hollande will be on a 3 day trip to the U.S. The two leaders kick off the trip with a tour of Thomas Jefferson's historic home, Monticello.

Wednesday, VW auto workers in Tennessee begin to vote on whether or not they will join a union. The vote involves 1,600 employees and the United Auto Workers. VW says it will remain neutral in the vote.

And on Sunday, basketball's brighter stars hit the court for the NBA all-star game. Fans will be tuning in to see how the Pelicans' Anthony Davis does filling in for an injured Kobe Bryant. At least Davis will have the support of his hometown as the game will be played in New Orleans. Tipoff is at 8:00 p.m. on TNT.

And that's your Weekly Five.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

LEMON: I want to go now to the crisis in Syria. According to Syrian television, more than 600 people were evacuated from the city of Homs today. Those evacuations just hours after an attack on U.N. relief workers that were trying to deliver food and supplies to people trapped for months by fighting between the government and rebels. Mohammad Jamjoon updates us now on the evacuation effort.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

MOHAMMED JAMJOON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hard to imagine this is progress. It's called an evacuation, but looks more like an escape. Dozens of mothers and children, their pleas for help louder than the gunfire close by, running for their lives. The cameraman worries they won't make it. "Please, God, don't let a massacre happen," he says. The families are running to the U.N., he adds. Then breaks down.

Help couldn't get there fast enough. So many innocent civilians used to being caught between regime and rebels, now wedged between just a few U.N. vehicles. After more than 600 days under siege, they make a painful pilgrimage out. The day before was even worse.

Aid workers sped around corners as blasts continued to go off. The convoy came under fire, but U.N. personnel still managed to deliver food and water. Trapped inside for hours, they experienced firsthand how hellish life in (INAUDIBLE) old city can be. Undeterred, they came back the next day. The wounded and elderly may have struggled to keep up, but the exodus continued. If bags were too heavy, they simply dropped them. After all, they've gotten closer to safety than they have in almost two years.

Shocking to be sure, but this may actually be an improvement.

Mohammed Jamjoon, reporting for CNN, Beirut.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

LEMON: A college basketball star could be facing suspension after he shoved a fan in the stands, but he says there's more to this story. We'll explain that right after the break.

But first, we want to talk about this. For millions of Americans, fitness is an obsession. But for many, many others it is a challenge. Dr. Sanjay Gupta introduces us to a group of people who teamed up for the Fit Nation challenge.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Hey, there. You know, we used to call this team the six-pack.

CROWD! Go six-pack!

GUPTA: But after meeting them, we decided to call them the Sassy Six. They are Connie, Sia, Karen, Mike, Ron and Jamil.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Let's go.

GUPTA: And they stormed into town for the fifth annual CNN Fit Nation kickoff weekend. And they are amazing people to meet. They are going to inspire you, they're going to touch you. Many of them have health challenges ranging from heart disease and diabetes. One is a cancer survivor. Another had gastric bypass surgery. And they are as mentally tough as they are expecting to be physically tough.

What they have decided, what we're hoping you decide as well, is that it is time to make huge, wholesale changes to their daily routines, from nutrition and fitness to how they schedule their lives: sleep, work, training.

So here's how we did things. We got them fitted for their bikes, we had them trained like the NBA Atlanta Hawks.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE; Ready, stance. Defense!

GUPTA: And we swam laps, many of them, back to back, and then even climbed Stone Mountain.

What is so fascinating about these teams is they end up bonding and supporting each other on a daily basis now. And they are all together, hitting the reset button from now until they cross that Malibu Triathlon finish line on September 14. I have no doubt they will all do it.

Good luck, team. Back to you.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

LEMON: Well, it's time to check in on the sports world. And we can't talk sports without talking to, of course, Terrence Moore. Hello, Mr. Moore.

TERRENCE MOORE, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Welcome back, Don.

LEMON: Thank you very much. Good to be here.

Let's start with college basketball. This story is really heating up. We have been reporting on this incident involving Marcus Smart of Oklahoma State. I want you to watch as he shoves a Texas fan -- a Texas Tech fan yesterday who was shouting at him behind the basket. Smart got a technical foul, but he was not ejected from the game. Have you seen anything like this before?

MOORE: You know, you occasionally see something like this every leap year or two in the NBA. You had that madness --

LEMON: Basket brawl.

MOORE: That's exactly right. Remember in Detroit with those knuckleheads going up in the stands and that sort of thing. But this is unprecedented in college basketball.

Don, let's start with this: there is never any excuse for a player, a coach, umpire or referee, anybody going into the stands touching anybody. That's why it's interesting to see what this guy says in a few minutes about what his reasoning was.

LEMON: Right on. I've been to basketball -- I've been to -- this has never happened at a college basketball game, but you go to an NBA game, right? People say the craziest you know what to players. And they are light there screaming at them. And they can say anything -- your momma is whatever, just anything. Those guys are supposed to react to that?

MOORE: But Don, you call those people fans, which is a derivative of fanatics, okay? If you try to please every fan at any sporting event, they're screaming ugly things at players, there would be nobody in the stands. You look at what's going on at Duke. They call him Cameron Crazies. They are glorified for being idiots out there. And they are considered the cream of the crop.

LEMON: So just ignore it. Okay.

MOORE: Just ignore it.

LEMON: You mentioned that he's expected to speak at a news conference next hour. I want you to come back in this hour at 6:00. I want you to come back and I want you to talk about that.

So listen, let's talk about, can we move on to talk about Tiger Woods?

All right. We'll talk about that later. We'll do that next hour when you come back and talk about the news conference, because I've got to get to the top of the hour.

MOORE: I will do that.

LEMON: We've got some serious news. Thank you, Terence Moore. Appreciate it.