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Republican Victory in Congressional Elections; Saving Big Cats; Rovers for Filming Penguins

Aired November 6, 2014 - 04:00:00   ET



BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: Obviously, Republicans had a good night. What stands out to me, though, is that the

American people sent a message, one that they`ve sent for several elections: now they expect the people they elect to work as hard as they



CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: First up today, on CNN STUDENT NEWS, President Obama reacting to a midterm election that largely went against his

political party in Congress.

Americans voted to take Senate control from the president`s fellow Democrats and give it to Republicans. They also voted to give Republicans

their biggest majority in the House of Representatives since World War II.


TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, what is right now, is the Congress that looks nothing like the Congress that Barack Obama started with.

Look at the U.S. Senate first. We fly it up high here.

Back when he took over in 2008, the Republicans were on the ropes. They had 41 seats. The Democrats had 57, plus two Independents that caucus with

them. In 2010, they lost six seats here on the Democratic side, gained a little of it back in 2012, but then came the deluge. Look at what happened

overnight. The Republicans had 52 at least, as we go through the counting here, Democrats down to 43, a couple of Independents, one of them - they

changed sides, and some undecided, but nonetheless, Republicans in charge.

This chamber has changed in a dramatic way.

And if you go across the rotunda in the Capitol, over to the U.S. House of Representatives. There the numbers are even more stark. Let`s change

everything over here, and look at the House and take it up high. 2008 when Barack Obama took over, Republicans are 178 seats, Democrats, 257. Then,

two years later, there was a landslide. The Democrats lost 66 seats. They gained a little bit back. Look at the numbers now, because this is where

we stand at this hours. We are adding this up. 242 for the Republicans, 174 for the Democrats. Some still undecided out there, but this is a

route. You add it all up, and President Obama in his two midterms will end up losing somewhere between 60 and 70 seats in Congress. Compare that to

some other presidents out there.

Ronald Reagan lost 31 during his midterms, George W. Bush, lost just 22 during his midterms and Bill Clinton lost just 49. All this means that if

the numbers keep running true this way, Barack Obama will have ended up losing more seats, his party will have lost more seats during his midterms

than any party has with any president since Harry Truman. So, this is a real setback for the Democrats right now. And the landscape, the

fundamental political landscape is changed dramatically.


AZUZ: Now, this is why it matters: the U.S. has an executive branch controlled by a Democrat. And it will have a legislative branch controlled

by Republicans. Can they bridge their differences on how to govern the country? You know from civics that bills usually start in the House - or

Senate, details are hammered out between the two chambers, and if a compromise has reached, it heads to the president for signature in the law.

But if c a Democrat, doesn`t like the bills that Republican lawmakers pass. He can veto them. And it takes it two thirds

vote in both chambers of Congress to override that veto. That`s hard to do. The president can bypass Congress and make policy changes through executive


But those are limited. They can be challenged in court, and Congress can decide, not to fund them. Without significant compromise, the capital

could get tents.


FOREMAN: For all of the Democratic lawsuits, the single biggest casualty of the night may have been President Obama`s agenda. His ability to

determine what`s being discusses in the houses of Congress. Here`s some specific examples.

After the Newtown shooting, there was a lot of energy in this country for new gun control laws. The Democrats couldn`t turn that into passable

legislation. It is very unlikely that embolden Republicans will now give the president any kind of other shot at that. What about immigration

reform? Democrats and Republicans have constantly disagreed on how that should be managed. Again, unless the president changes his stance a lot,

Republicans are not going to help him get anything through in all likelihood.

Yes, Republicans like the idea of new infrastructure improvements. They like new bridges, new roads, new dams, new electrical grids. But they will

not want to pay for this with increased taxes. They will want cuts to social programs to pay for it. That`s a non-starter for Democrats, and of

course, there is Obamacare.

Many Republicans can see they cannot overturn it now, but they can certainly make it very hard for President Obama and Democrats to make any

refinements or changes that could make it work better in Democratic eye.

All of this could basically take all these things off the table, kill them right now and more importantly Republicans could then start shoving

legislation at the president that he feels he simply cannot sign as a Democrat and then the Republicans will say ah, which party is the party of

"No" now?

And that could be a tough pill for the Democrats to swallow.


AZUZ: Why are old school pirates always depicted wearing an eye patch? Well, they are not alive to tell us, but a popular theory has nothing to do

with injuries from sword fights. If a pirate had to move quickly from top side to below deck, from bright sunlight to near total darkness, keeping

one eye covered would keep that eye accustomed to low light, making it easier for him to see without having to take the time to adjust its vision.

It`s not documented in history, but it`s not hard to envision. Plus, it`s random.

This is a cat, and he is feline, all right. But the term "cat" describes much more than this. It includes any members of the family felidae tigers,

lions, leopards, cougars.

And there`s a place in Texas that rescues big cats that might have been abandoned or abused or maybe they came from zoos or circuses after

retirement. What it`s like to care for them?


DEREK KRAHN: My name is Derek Krahn and this is what it`s like to work with big cats.

I`m the operations director of the Center for Animal Research and Education, it`s a non-profit big cats` sanctuary. As of right now, we`ve

got 41 cats, mostly tigers. We`ve got cougars, leopards, lions. We live here on site with our family. I mean they are basically in our backyard.

I`m normally surrounded by all of these cats.

(on camera): My goodness, oh my goodness, oh my goodness. Hi.

(voice over): I thought that the lifestyle that I was living here was very interesting and it could be very relatable to a lot of different people.

What really set everything off was when I started funding (ph), and I started just taking six second clip of the cats. I had spent years

building the relationship with all of the different cats, and I was able to then translate that to live video content.

It`s my huge impact on my life and the life of my family and at the life of the organization. And I think the people really appreciate that honesty

above the real human-based stories that we`ve got going on here.

(on camera): I`ll let you not do it. You are being kind of rude, honestly. I`ve got to do an interview.

(voice over): You do become like a surrogate father figure to a lot of them.

(on camera): How are you? You peed on me. That`s great.

(voice over): Really, what a lot of that boils down to, it`s just they become your friends. They become your very, very close and very dear



AZUZ: On our transcript page, at, we are getting thousands of "Roll Call" requests every day, thanks to all of you for your


We are going to start in Kaohsiung today. It`s in Taiwan and it`s where we are on in Kaohsiung High School. The centennial State of Colorado is next

at Monte Vista Middle School at Monte Vista. Hello to the pirates. How are you doing? And how about the dogs? The bulldogs of UMS-Wright

Preparatory School is watching. Good to see you in Mobile, Alabama.

Apparently, some researchers thought that the cameras in the "March of the Penguins" just didn`t get close enough to the birds. So, someone invented

this: It`s a remote control penguin rover. It`s got mobility, it`s got cameras, it gets really close up viewers of the animals. Now, you might be

asking why.

Researchers say that penguins are less stressed by rovers than humans, that they are heart rates are lower, so the camera can get closer.

Now, you might think it`s for the birds, but for scientists with the funding it`s a penguiner. It`s a really beak deal. It makes the

flightless more frightless, wondering what will they think of next. I`m Carl Azuz winging it for CNN STUDENT NEWS. Tomorrow is Friday and you know

what that means.