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Campbell Brown

Supreme Battle Continues; New Developments in Florida Murder Investigation

Aired July 15, 2009 - 20:00   ET



CAMPBELL BROWN, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): Tonight, here are the questions we want answered.

Was this the beginning of the end for Michael Jackson? Watch closely. Fire on the set during the filming of a Pepsi commercial, was this the trigger for decades of drug abuse?

Plus, Supreme Court Kabuki theater. Everyone is doing the dance.

JUDGE SONIA SOTOMAYOR, SUPREME COURT NOMINEE: It is clear from the attention that my words have gotten and the manner in which it has been understood by some people that my words failed.

BROWN: What does she really want to say? We're pulling back the curtain on the big show in Congress.

Also, a woman attacked by a shark, so, why is she on Capitol Hill today trying to save them? We will talk to the victim turned shark protector.

And President Obama's big pitch. Rush Limbaugh is even attacking him for that. Listen to this.

RUSH LIMBAUGH, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: The guy throws like a girl. I'm sorry. He throws like a girl.

BROWN: Hey, Rush, what's wrong with throwing like a girl?

And Paul McCartney playing live outside on the streets of New York, that's tonight's breakout.


ANNOUNCER: This is your only source for news. CNN prime time begins now. Here's Campbell Brown.

BROWN: Hey, everybody.

We have breaking news to tell you about tonight -- new developments in the murder down in Florida, the parents of those 17 children. We are waiting for the news conference that's set to begin very shortly here. We are going to take it to you live the minute it happens. But we're start as we always do with the "Mash-Up." It is, of course, our look at stories making an impact right now, the moments you may have missed. We're watching it all, so you don't have to.

And it was day three of the "Seinfeld" of confirmation hearings. Some might call it a show about nothing, Judge Sotomayor mastering the art of saying as little as possible about anything important.

Take abortion. She was asked her views again. And, again today, she gave no ground, said President Obama didn't even bring it up when he picked her.

So, what do these hearings really reveal? Well, in Washington, pretty much everything is a matter of perspective, like how two senator can read the exact same thing and flag different parts. It's sort of hard to explain. Just watch. This is Democrat Ben Cardin and Republican Lindsey Graham, the view from the left and the view from the right.


SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: When you look at the almanac of the federal judiciary.

SEN. BENJAMIN CARDIN (D), MARYLAND: The almanac on the federal judiciary.

GRAHAM: Here's what they said about you.

CARDIN: They were commenting about you.

GRAHAM: She's overly aggressive, not very judicial. She does not have a very good temperament.

CARDIN: She's bright. She's a good judge. She's very smart.

GRAHAM: She's a terror on the bench. She abuses lawyers.

CARDIN: She's an exceptional judge overall. She's engaged in oral argument.

GRAHAM: She's temperamental, excitable. She seems angry.

CARDIN: She is extremely hardworking and well-prepared. She has a very good common-sense approach to the law.

GRAHAM: She's makes inappropriate outbursts.

CARDIN: She's intellectually tough.

GRAHAM: She can be a bit of a bully.


BROWN: Wow. What exactly is the takeaway there? I have no idea. Our favorite part of the day, though, was Al Franken. He got to ask his very first questions as a U.S. senator. For the record, he asked some really good questions about abortion, about judicial activism. But he also made his first joke, bringing up the classic TV show that inspired the judge. Check this out.


SEN. AL FRANKEN (D), MINNESOTA: You mentioned "Perry Mason." I was a big fan of "Perry Mason." I watched "Perry Mason" every week with my dad and my mom and my brother.

And it amazes me that you wanted to become a prosecutor based on that show, because, in "Perry Mason," the prosecutor, Burger, lost every week, with one exception which we will get to later.


FRANKEN: But I think that says something about your determination to defy the odds.

What was the one case in "Perry Mason" that -- that Burger won?


SOTOMAYOR: There, I wish I remembered the name of the episode, but I don't. I just was always struck that there was only one case where his client was actually guilty. And...

FRANKEN: And -- and you don't remember that case?

SOTOMAYOR: I know that I should remember the name of it, but I haven't looked at the episode.


FRANKEN: Didn't the White House prepare you for...


FRANKEN: ... for that?


BROWN: So, this was Franken's first confirmation hearing as a for-real senator. But, way back when, he, of course, played one on TV. Yes, he did, Al Franken on "Saturday Night Live" as former Senator Paul Simon grilling Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas.


FRANKEN: Judge, Judge Thomas, Judge Thomas, are you aware of that division of our government known as the criminal Justice Department?


FRANKEN: Well, you know, when you walk in the main entrance of the criminal justice building, there is this receptionist with short brown hair?

UNIDENTIFIED ACTOR: The one at the third desk on the left?


FRANKEN: No, no, the one at the big circular desk right there in the center there.


FRANKEN: Yes, sandy. Do you think she would go out with me?


UNIDENTIFIED ACTOR: Well, Senator Simon, not knowing your technique, I feel it will be unfair for me to prejudge your chances with her.

FRANKEN: You think it's the bow tie then, huh?


BROWN: Guessing life really does imitate art these days.

Moving on to our president. With his Supreme Court pick safe on the Hill, President Obama launching a full-court press on his other top priority, health care reform, sitting down with all three medical reporters from all three broadcast networks, trying to convince Americans the only thing we have to fear -- well, you know the rest.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: If you have got health insurance that you're happy with, you have got a doctor that you're happy with, we don't want you to do anything.

We don't think that we have to impose draconian measures to force patients to use a generic, instead of a brand-name drug.

There's no such thing as a free lunch, right? So, we can't just provide care to everybody.


BROWN: The White House wants Congress to pass health care reform before the August recess. Ticktock.

And now some candy for all the ladies out there. Soccer star David Beckham today rejoining the Los Angeles Galaxy, saying he's fully committed to playing in the U.S. and delivering for his fans. He was on NBC's "Today Show" this morning and they asked him about, well, other things.


MEREDITH VIEIRA, CO-HOST, "THE TODAY SHOW": Look who has joined us. David Beckham.


MATT LAUER, CO-HOST, "THE TODAY SHOW": Welcome back, David. Nice to see you.

VIEIRA: Nice to meet you.

LAUER: We're going to talk to David in a second. He has agreed to show us every tattoo on his body. Isn't that right?



LAUER: Some of the female staffers and actually some of the male staffers have taken note of this ad campaign you're doing for -- is this Armani?


LAUER: This is Armani. I did not know Armani made underwear, but now I know?

What's it like to pose -- and there's Victoria, obviously, looking beautiful. What's it like to pose for these things? Do you just kind of put yourself in another place and get through it?

BECKHAM: Yes, I personally have to, because I'm a soccer player at the end of the day. But to do something like that was a great experience.


BROWN: Deep thoughts with David Beckham.

And that brings us to the punchline. At this point, we're wondering what the late-night guys would do if they didn't have Sarah Palin to kick around. Here's Jimmy Fallon.


JIMMY FALLON, HOST, "LATE NIGHT WITH JIMMY FALLON": Sarah Palin's friends say they are worried about her because she looks frail and her hair is thinning. It's all part of her plan to run for president in 2012 as John McCain.



BROWN: Jimmy Fallon, everybody. That's the "Mash-Up" for tonight.

And we're going to get back to that breaking news in the case of those Florida parents that were killed in their own bedroom, the shocking story -- police about to have a news conference, possibly, as we understand, to announce another arrest. We are going to bring it to you live when that happens.

Plus, see tonight for the very first time the video of Michael Jackson on fire. This was during the filming of that Pepsi commercial years ago. Did that accident trigger what turned into decades-long addiction to drugs? We will talk about that.


BROWN: Breaking news tonight in the case of that Florida couple, parents of 17 children, killed in their own home last week.

Why is the DEA, the federal Drug Enforcement Agency, now investigating? And what about the person of interest who surfaced today? What exactly is she saying? And is there possibly another suspect still on the loose?

CNN's Ed Lavandera is live for us in Pensacola. We have also got Rob Williams of Pensacola's News Radio 1620, who has been helping us out this week as well on this story.

Thanks to both of you guys for joining us right now.

Ed, I know we're expecting this news conference some time this evening. Any indication about what police are going to tell us tonight?

ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, believe it or not, it sounds like we're told that another arrest will be made, even though authorities have said so far that they believe that they have arrested the seven people that were inside the property when the Billings couple was murdered.

But they say there is another rest. We're not sure if it's the woman that authorities have been looking for and found throughout today, or that eighth person that they believe might be connected in terms of shutting off or not shutting off the surveillance system inside the house.

So, we're not sure who it might be, but they say another arrest is going to be announced later tonight.

BROWN: OK. And flesh that out for us. Explain what you mean, Ed, for the people who are not aware, about what was going on with the security system, what they discovered.

LAVANDERA: Well, this has been interesting insight into how this investigation has played out, authorities here explaining one of the theories that they have been working under over the last few days.

And what has bothered them is that they know that -- or they believe that men had rehearsed, practiced for several weeks leading up to these killings how they were going to carry this, that they had rehearsed this.

So, they couldn't kind of reconcile the fact that, if these guys had practiced this, were familiar with the property, knew what was going on, how did they not know that there were video cameras that would be recording their movements on this? How did that not get shut down.

So, their theory is, is that another person, this eighth person that they're looking for, was supposed to have turned off the surveillance system at the house, but that didn't happen. Whether it was a stroke of consciousness that overcame that person or not, they don't know. But that's the person that they want to get to as well.

BROWN: OK. And then go back to, Ed, also -- before I bring Rob in, we do understand that police have located this latest person of interest, Pamela Long. They were showing her picture throughout the day today. Do we have any specific details about her involvement?

LAVANDERA: We don't know about the involvement. We do know that she has perhaps an extensive history with the suspect that authorities are saying is the ringleader of this group. And that's Leonard Patrick Gonzalez Jr. The sheriff here saying today that they believe that she had been in contact with Gonzalez Jr. in the days leading up to and even perhaps the day of the murders.

We understand that she might have also been his landlord as well. So, there is that connection that they know each other, but exactly how that plays into what has happened in the Billings murder case, we don't know the specifics of that.

BROWN: OK, and, Rob, let me bring you into this. I know you have been doing a lot of additional reporting on the story. Anything that you can add? In addition, do you know anything about this other person of interest that police may be talking about?

ROB WILLIAMS, WNRP ANCHOR: Well, the lady from suburban Gulf Breeze -- it's the town just on the coast of the -- just to the east of Pensacola, five minutes away -- has an antique store there and has some real estate interests.

I haven't found her especially to be well-known, as the sheriff might say. Police found her in Gulf -- in Orange Beach, Alabama, about 20, 30 miles to the west. She came in voluntarily. She's been talking to the sheriff's department.

But, as one source says, they don't unarrest anyone. So, look for at least one, maybe two people in jail by the close of business tonight. The sheriff's news conference, Campbell, could be coming up inside of an hour, certainly two hours.

BROWN: And, Ed, we have been hearing -- or, actually Rob, let me start with you on this. We have been hearing about possible DEA involvement. The sheriff said that initially and then sort of seemed to back away from it. Do we know anything more about this? WILLIAMS: Well, I interviewed the sheriff on the air at News Radio 1620 on Monday morning. He told me right then, the FBI, and the DEA, the Internal Revenue Service, and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms were all in on this in one way, shape or form, maybe just their resources, their ability to do technical things. But they are here, they're looking, they're involved, hands on, every day.

BROWN: And, then, finally, Rob, tell us a little bit about the primary suspect that they have in custody that we're hearing is the mastermind, this guy Gonzalez, who, as many, the paper down in Pensacola and you guys, have been reporting, even his family has talked about him as being a really bad guy.

What do we know about this guy?

WILLIAMS: Well, we know that the daughter that he talked about in his Facebook page or MySpace page is actually still with her birth mother down in Sarasota, Florida. So, his daughter, now 8 years old, was not one of the children that the Billings family had adopted. So, that's off the table.

He has six kids now, got an award as a humanitarian for the Sertoma Club for service to mankind for teaching elementary school, middle school kids some self-defense moves. But yet people say he has a mean streak to him. And that's one of those things you're going to have to wait and see how it all develops.

But even though the sheriff's department really won't say he's the mastermind, apparently, he's the linchpin in all of this. He's the one common denominator all of these people had. And as one of my sources told me in Florida it's going to go one of two ways, death by lethal injection or death in the electric chair -- Campbell.

BROWN: All right. Rob for us, along with Ted, you guys are standing by, Rob Williams, of, Ed Lavandera, as we await this news conference with new details coming from the sheriff's department tonight. We will be checking back in with both Ed and Rob and of course bringing you that news conference live the minute it happens.

A plane falls out of the sky. It explodes on impact. That's coming up in tonight's "Download."

Plus, Paul McCartney live on the streets of New York playing on top of The Ed Sullivan Theater, almost like 1964? We have got the video.


BROWN: Now let's take a look at some of the other must-see stories of the day. Mike Galanos of HLN tonight's "Download" for us.

Hey, Mike.


Some rush hour chaos to tell you about, this near the U.S. Capitol today, as cops shot and killed a man they say pulled a gun. Capitol Police say the man fled a routine traffic stop, hit a couple officers with his Mercedes, before police shot him.

Now, police say the incident was not related to Capitol security. Parts of the complex were sealed off for about a half-an-hour today.

Well, no survivors from this morning's of a passenger jet in Iran. Only a smoldering crater and pieces of debris remain where it went down almost 100 miles northwest of Tehran -- 168 passengers were aboard the Russian-made Caspian Airlines jet bound from Tehran to Armenia.

Some witnesses on the ground say the plane caught fire before crashing. No official word yet on a cause as of yet.

And the man ousted as commander of NATO forces in Afghanistan a couple of months ago telling it like it is today. Here's General David McKiernan.


GEN. DAVID MCKIERNAN, COMMANDER, U.S. FORCES IN AFGHANISTAN: If you had asked me 30 days ago if I would be here today at my retirement ceremony, I probably would have said no, maybe in a bit stronger terms.

Make no mistake, I was dismayed, disappointed, more than a little embarrassed.


GALANOS: Very blunt here.

General McKiernan says he eventually came to realize that it's not about him. It's about respect for the Army. He also said save the condolences for those who won't be coming home.

Well, the Pentagon says it will not ban smoking by troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. Health experts have pushed for a smoke-free military. But Defense Secretary Robert Gates thinks troops in the war zone are under enough stress already, and he doesn't want to take away one of the few outlets to relieve that stress.

Well, a British backpacker has been found alive after 12 days lost in Australia's Blue Mountains -- 19-year-old Jamie Neale set out alone, no phone, few supplies. Two hikers found him. And no one is happier than his dad -- well, for the most part.


RICHARD CASS, FATHER: I'm like a lunatic. My boy's been found. My boy's been found. He said he went out to Ruined Castle. And when you get to Ruined Castle, there's a sign there, experienced walkers only, which he ignored.

When I have seen the mistake after mistake he's made, you know, I can't say I will kill him, because, obviously, that would spoil the part of him coming back.



GALANOS: How about day laying it on him there?

Now, Neale survived by eating seeds and leaves and sleeping under logs. Quite a story there.

And, finally, this -- Paul McCartney back to where it all began for the Beatles in the U.S. Check this out. Campbell, you showed this before. And it sounded it pretty good. McCartney and his band played a surprise rush hour concert atop the marquee of New York's Ed Sullivan Theater.

Let's get a listen. Yes, Campbell, performed quite a number of songs there, "Band on the Run, "Get Back," "Back in the USSR."

A free concert. There, you saw the video there. Imagine you flip on your air conditioner, you look out, and there's Paul McCartney. They said he was waving to some of the folks out there.


BROWN: I know. And nobody knew this was happening. We were shocked. When the video came in, everybody stopped to watch. Can you imagine just driving down the street or walking down the street and...

GALANOS: Yes, there's McCartney waving to you.

BROWN: And clearly a lot of people pretty excited. Big crowd out there.


BROWN: All right, Mike for us, Mike Galanos, we will see you a little bit later. Mike, thanks.

GALANOS: OK. Thanks, Campbell.

BROWN: Tonight, never-before-seen video of Michael Jackson literally on fire. This is the accident that happened when he was shooting that Pepsi commercial years ago. We have the tape. We're going to show you that when we come back.

Plus, President Obama's big first pitch, and yet another reason for Rush Limbaugh to complain.


LIMBAUGH: Obama's pitch didn't make it all the way to the plate. The guy throws like a girl. I'm sorry. He throws like a girl.



BROWN: Tonight, we have some never-before-seen video of one of the scariest moments in Michael Jackson's life.

And I want to warn you, this is very disturbing video. This is from his Pepsi commercial shoot 25 years ago in Los Angeles. And some people believe that, if Jackson abused painkillers, it may have been the result of what happened right now, of what you're about to see.

Watching this with me to talk to us about from Chicago, CNN contributor Bryan Monroe, who was the last journalist to interview Jackson, in Los Angeles, former CNN anchor Jim Moret, now chief correspondent for "Inside Edition," and Dr. Reef Karim, a psychiatrist and addiction specialist, joining us also.

So, guys, here's the video. This was obtained by "Us Weekly." Take a look. You can see it shows a series of explosions and then this one, which went off too soon, setting fire to Jackson's scalp. This is at the Shrine Auditorium back in Los Angeles.

He makes his way down the steps there, as you saw, into the audience and then quickly surrounded by a team of stagehands. But the damage was done. You saw there how bad that was. He suffered second- , third-degree burns to his face and to his scalp. Just horrifying.

I want to get reaction right now from the guys here.

Bryan, I didn't -- I remember, when we heard about this incident taking place back in 1984, I never dreamed it was so bad. We never saw that video that clearly showed how horrible this was. Was there any sense? Did people know that it was that bad?

BRYAN MONROE, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: In fact if you remember at the time, the only video they released was the front scene that was grainy and blurry that had him coming down the stairs and the smoke behind him.

BROWN: Right.

MONROE: And you could tell it was not a good situation. But you could not see the flame.

In this shot here that shows from the back, the flame -- his head in flame. And, remember, that was the time when Michael had the wet look in his hair. It wasn't as much greasy as it was -- there was a hair pomade, and there was question whether or not that also added to the speed that the fire took off.

But, you know, the folks came quickly and put it under control, but it caused tremendous damage. And Michael was in a lot of pain, even though, if you remember, at the end, when they're wheeling him out on a gurney into the hospital, he still has his one white sequins glove on to make the point of his signature move.

BROWN: Jim, you covered that story in L.A. This was, again, back in '84. What's your reaction looking back on it now?

JIM MORET, CHIEF CORRESPONDENT, "INSIDE EDITION": I was a local ABC reporter for Los Angeles.

And I remember we only did see that front view. You're right.


MORET: And seeing it today, and I'm counting -- I count about 10 seconds where Michael Jackson didn't realize that his hair was on fire. And you saw that part of scalp that was literally burned away. He had to endure a series of operations after that and skin grafts.

And it was as a result of those injuries and the severe pain that Michael Jackson used Demerol to control the pain. And then years later, he admitted he became addicted to Demerol. Nobody sets out other become an addict. Michael Jackson needed painkillers and unfortunately became addicted to them.

But this was the moment perhaps of his ultimate undoing. And it's a horrible thing to watch.

BROWN: Do you agree with that, Dr. Karim? Because, clearly, I mean, that looked awful. It was obviously painful. One would certainly need pain medication after going through something like that. Is this how prescription drug addiction can start?


Just the fact that he had second- and third-degree burns. Second-degree burns are blistering, reddened skin and a lot, lot of pain. Third-degree burns are when it goes through not only the epidermis, the dermal layer, and goes into the deep tissue layer. And often people are even numb when they get to that point, because they have done some injury to their deeper tissues.

This brings up a huge point. And I agree with Jim completely here. It's not like people walk around looking to be addicts. Very often, in prescription drug dependence, we have people that have a ski injury. They hurt their leg. They have a tooth extraction. They have an injury like this, where they don't expect to be addicts. They just want pain relief.

And, from the pain relief, their body gets used to and develops tolerance to these pills, so that they need more and more and more to get the same desired effect. And, you know, if you're genetically predisposed or you had some kind of environmental problem growing up or whatever, you might become addicted to it.

BROWN: And just quickly, what's the time -- recovery timeline also for something like that, second and third degree burns? Presumably, it takes a long time to heal, so you're on those drugs for a fairly extended period of time.

KARIM: Yes, you're correct. The pain associated with burns is significant, really significant and to the point where -- I mean you're constantly addressing the wound. It hurts every single time that happens and that could go on for months. It could go on for definitively an extended period of time.

BROWN: And then fast-forward, of course --


BROWN: Go ahead.

MONROE: No, I was going to say, Campbell, if you remember that was in 1984, right at the peak. You know, "Thriller" had just come out. He was doing that tour. In fact, the Pepsi commercial was done to the tune of "Billie Jean" and, you know, he had a whole bunch of things scheduled right after that that had to be put on hold.

And then if you fast-forward two years later is when he first had that -- he had also been diagnosed with lupus...

BROWN: Right.

MONROE: ... which was a very, very painful autoimmune disease that disproportionately affects African-Americans. So he was managing an awful lot of pain at that time.

BROWN: And then fast-forward many, many years later. I want to show you guys these pictures. These were obtained by ABC News that seem to show needle marks and a wound of some sort, a big wound of some sort on his leg there.

Jim, what do you make of those?

JIM MORET, CHIEF CORRESPONDENT, "INSIDE EDITION": I showed those photos today to an addiction specialist, someone who runs Wonderland, a local addiction facility. And I said forget who this may be. If I show you this picture, what do you see?

And he said I see needle marks, I see a drug addict, and I see sores associated with that. And he was very definitive.

And I asked him again and again. And this doctor had been himself a heroin addict. And he said looking at those photos brought up those same horrible feelings that he had about himself when he himself injected. He said that veins in his arms collapsed, so he went to his legs. And that's what he saw on those photos.

BROWN: Dr. Karim, what could cause a wound like that? Do you have any sense?

KARIM: Yes, that wound is tissue necrosis. Tissue necrosis means a premature loss of tissue, death of tissue cells. One of the reasons that could happen is an injection, of injecting drugs into the vein. But there are many, many other reasons. It can happen from osteomyelitis, an infection, an injury, a trauma, a toxin to the area, inflammation to that area that's untreated. There are many, many things that can cause that. So I don't want to jump on this bandwagon right away of hey, it was injecting drugs because if somebody putting an IV in there where it got infected could cause untreated, that kind of look. So there's many, many --

MORET: I just want to be clear. I was talking specifically -- the doctor I talked to was talking specifically about the puncture marks not about the wound, per se.

BROWN: Right. OK. We got to end it there. Dr. Karim, Jim and Bryan, appreciate your time. Thanks very much, guys.

So how closely are you following the Sotomayor confirmation hearing? Well, pay close enough attention and it sort of all starts to resemble Kabuki Theater. We will demonstrate and show you what they are all really trying to say or what they really want to say.


BROWN: Hours of questions and answers at Sonia Sotomayor's confirmation hearings. But sometimes it seems like there's not a whole lot being said. Take for example this, from the judge's testimony yesterday.


JUDGE SONIA SOTOMAYOR, SUPREME COURT NOMINEE: All of my decisions show my respect for the rule of law.

What my record shows is that I follow the law.

In every case, I have decided, I have done what the law requires.

The job of a judge is to apply the law.


BROWN: So, what have we learned? Judge Sotomayor follows the law. Not exactly a controversial statement. Let's dig a little deeper into, though, not just what's being said at the hearings but what perhaps they would like to be saying at these hearings.

This is a segment we're calling "Sotomayor Kabuki Theater." And here to help us out, Sam Seder, who is co-host of Air America's "Break Room Live" and Cathy Areu is contributing editor of "The Washington Post" magazine.

Welcome to both of you. I just want to go through some of the examples that have just kind of been mind-blowing to me watching all of this. Take a listen. This is one of the exchanges on the now infamous "wise Latina" comment. Listen.


SEN. JON KYL (R), ARIZONA: Have you ever seen a case where -- to use your example -- the "wise Latina" made a better decision than non- Latina judges?

JUDGE SONIA SOTOMAYOR, SUPREME COURT NOMINEE: No, my speech was intending to inspire the students to understand the richness that their backgrounds could bring to the judicial process.

SEN. JOHN CORNYN (R), TEXAS: Are you standing by that statement or are you saying that it was a bad idea, and you -- are you disavowing that statement?

SOTOMAYOR: It is clear from the attention that my words have gotten, and the manner in which it has been understood by some people, that my words failed. They didn't work.


BROWN: Words chosen very carefully now. Cathy, if she weren't sitting before this committee right now, and with so much at stake, would she really be backing off of that statement?

CATHY AREU, "WASHINGTON POST" MAGAZINE: No. As a wise Latina, I can tell you, no, she's not backing down. And she probably would want to say, not only do I mean a wise Latina, I meant any Latina could make a better decision than a white man could.


AREU: I'm just saying, I'm just saying. It's not just in her mind. She may not say it, but maybe she's thinking that.

BROWN: Sam, what about the senators? Interpret their questioning here for us. What's going on, really?

SAM SEDER, AIR AMERICA RADIO HOST: Well, basically, what they're saying is that the opinions of white conservative male judges define objectivity and they're also thanking her for not being one so they can send out fund-raising e-mails about her. And I would add they're also saying, thank gosh, that my electoral chances don't depend on the Hispanic vote.

BROWN: Well, they may actually coming up in future elections. Maybe they're not quite thinking this through.

Anyway, take a listen to this exchange. This is on the topic that is danced around at every Supreme Court hearing, frankly, the issue of abortion. Listen.


SEN. JOHN CORNYN (R), TEXAS: The White House press secretary said the president did not ask Sotomayor specifically about abortion rights during their interview. Is that correct?

JUDGE SONIA SOTOMAYOR, SUPREME COURT NOMINEE: Yes. It is absolutely correct. I was asked no question by anyone, including the president, about my views on any specific legal issue.


BROWN: Now, Sam, the senator didn't really expect her to say yes. I swore to President Obama that I would uphold Roe v. Wade.

SEDER: Right.

BROWN: So what is this about? This line of questioning takes place at every confirmation hearing.

SEDER: Right. And you hear this from both Democrats and Republicans. And basically what they're saying is, can you pretend we don't know where you stand on a woman's right to choose so that we can pretend that we don't have a litmus test?

BROWN: And you agree with that?

AREU: What is she going to say? Oh, gosh, you got me. This is how I feel about abortion.

No, she's not going to talk. You can't stump her. She's from New York and she's a wise Latina.

BROWN: All right. Take a quick listen here to Senator Lindsey Graham who's challenging the judge on her reputation among lawyers as a tough questioner. Listen to this.


SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: She's a terror on the bench. She's temperamental, excitable. She seems angry.

She's overly aggressive, not very judicial. She does not have a very good temperament. She abuses lawyers.

She really lacks judicial temperament. Do you think you have a temperament problem?

SOTOMAYOR: No, sir. I can only talk about what I know about my relationship with the judges of my court and with the lawyers who appear regularly from our circuit.


BROWN: Yes, I have a temperament problem, I really do. You should definitely not confirm me. What is going on, Sam?

SEDER: Well, you know, what Lindsey Graham is saying here is he's basically saying I want to apologize to Rush Limbaugh for treating you so fairly yesterday and hope that the way I'm questioning you now will put me back in his good graces. And so I think that's his hope, anyway.

BROWN: OK. Before we run out of time here, if all of that wasn't enough, aside from being the first Hispanic justice nominated, she's also the first to take a question from a former "SNL" cast member. Take a listen to this. This is Senator Al Franken. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SEN. AL FRANKEN (D), MINNESOTA: Are the words "birth control" in the Constitution?


FRANKEN: Are you sure?

SOTOMAYOR: Yes, sir.

FRANKEN: OK. Are the words "privacy" in the Constitution? Or the word?

SOTOMAYOR: The word "privacy" is not.


BROWN: So, guys, the point of this is that Jon Stewart said last night every time Al Franken speaks during these confirmation hearings, he's waiting to hear "live from New York, it's Saturday night."

So what -- what are they really thinking? Are there are other people in the room having the same thought? Have we gotten to the point where we can take Al Franken seriously as a senator yet?

AREU: It's Stuart Smalley. It's Stuart Smalley. I mean, gosh, darn it, we like him. He's just adorable.

You could tell she's lit up when he walked in. When he started asking the questions, she kind of lit up. I think she was going to ask for an autograph.


SEDER: You know, I got to say having worked with Al Franken at Air America, I know he's a very serious guy. But there's no doubt in my mind what he was really thinking is I got three great jokes about Senator Kyl that I should be telling right now, but alas I won't.

BROWN: All right, guys, we got to end it there. We really appreciate it. Thanks so much for your time tonight.

We -- sorry, Sam and Cathy. We have a little bit of breaking news we got to get to. My apologies. This is about the Florida family killings.

We are expecting a news conference. We've been telling you, that coming up shortly. We are watching that very closely. We're going to bring it you as soon as it happens. Stay with us.


BROWN: Now to our next big question, is Hillary Clinton being sidelined by the White House? That was a message some people took from a scheduling snafu today. That was just minutes after the secretary of state began a major foreign policy speech.

President Obama stole the spotlight with a Rose Garden event on health care. Does that mean there's actually bad blood between them or people reading too much into this? Press Secretary Robert Gibbs says this.


ROBERT GIBBS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: I think the notion that there's some rift or disagreement is -- are nothing more than silly Washington games.


BROWN: Silly Washington games, or a brilliant checkmate by the Obama administration? That is the question tonight for CNN senior political analyst Gloria Borger, Bonnie Erbe, who's the host of "To the Contrary" on PBS, and Michael Crowley, senior editor of "The New Republic."

Welcome, guys.




BROWN: Gloria, you know what people are saying. The president's remarks on health care today overshadowing her big foreign policy speech. What's your take on all this?

BORGER: Well, I asked somebody at the State Department who's very close to Hillary Clinton about this and he said believe it or not, it was a right hand-left hand situation. No one was aware of the exact timing of her speech, and they just messed up. He also said this notion that there is some huge rift between the two of these folks is, and I'm quoting, "total B.S., nonsense and bunk."

BROWN: Michael, talk to me a little bit about her role, though, as secretary of state right now. Is it large enough? Is it influential enough for her and her need to have a real challenge?

CROWLEY: I think that the role is real and influential. I think that the problem is that Obama is such a massive personality. He sucks up so much oxygen. When he travels the world, it's such an enormous story that it feels like she's smaller by contrast.

But I've been doing a lot of reporting in the foreign policy team in particular in the last couple of weeks. I've talked to a lot of people and over and over again, I think really sincerely and truly, they say that she's doing a good job. There is not a lot of tension. She has a good relationship with Obama.

I think the problem is just that -- you know, he knew -- he had to know he was going to get some of this when he appointed her. There's a drama that always follows Hillary everywhere she goes. And the storyline of Obama versus Hillary was just so juicy and entertaining during the primaries, I think, that people just kind of can't let it go. Coupled with Obama's star power, it has looked like she's been sidelined but I really don't think that's actually the case.

BROWN: Bonnie, what do you think?

ERBE: I think that he is a rock star and he's a solo artist. He's not playing in a band and he does suck up all the energy.

But I also do think that there's some substance to "The Daily Beast" article by Tina Brown where she said that they agree on policy, but personally, I think there still are some risks. You can't have been, as she was, the heir -- and I think, actually, the risks come more from the Obama side than from the Clinton side. But she was the heir apparent.

He stepped in. He did so by taking a lot of the major Democratic donors away from her. Many of whom he's now appointing as ambassadorship, something that sometimes her department has something to do with.

BORGER: But, you know, actually I think they don't always agree on policy. I was told today, for example, that he's not looking for yes people and she is not a yes person.

For example, she may have wanted a more muscular response on Iran but the president was the one who had to decide to pull the trigger on that and to do it when he wanted to do it. She was the one who advised him and said look, you've got to send these 4,000 extra troops into Afghanistan.

It was something he had to think about. But in the end, he did it. So I don't think they always agree on policy. But she understands things --

ERBE: I think the major, the major focus of trying to make friends with the world, however, instead of the confrontational approach of the Bush administration, they're perfectly in sync on that.

BROWN: Right. Quickly, Michael.

CROWLEY: Campbell, I think that there are private disagreements.

BROWN: Right.

CROWLEY: But publicly, I think I've been struck by how much Hillary is being a good soldier. And I think the White House is happy about that.

BROWN: All right, guys, we got to end it there. But Michael, Bonnie, Gloria, as always, thank you very much.

We're going to get back to our breaking news now out of Florida. We're following this news conference about to take place down there. We're going to bring it to you as soon as it happens. Stay with us.


BROWN: Welcome back, everybody. Tonight's newsmaker is President Obama. Not for his vow to fix health care or his latest overseas mission -- no, no, no. We are talking about the one thing Democrats and Republicans and independents can all agree on. His pitching arm needs real work. Exhibit A, last night's All-Star Game.

Back with me now to break it all down for us, Mike Galanos. Mike, take it away.

MIKE GALANOS, HOST, PRIME NEWS ON HLN: Yes, Campbell, you and I watched it together last night. And you asked me how do you think he did?

Well, I gave him a tepid thumb's up at the time. I think I'm retracting that. Here he is trotting up to the mound.

BROWN: Oh, no.

GALANOS: I do. I have to because we had a bad angle. As we watch it again, we get the better angle. It was a pretty weak throw. Let's watch it here.

He trots out there. He's even taken a little beating for the jeans, by the way. We get to that in a minute.

But there's the throw. He short-armed it, Campbell. He short- armed it. You could see?

BROWN: Oh, yes.

GALANOS: He didn't even make it to home plate. I was like, oh.

BROWN: Yes. In fact, the catcher jumped in there and sort of saved him, didn't he?

GALANOS: Yes. Albert Pujols has had to jump out there and save the day for the president to make sure it didn't bounce, because that was his goal. Throw the lob ball, make sure it doesn't bounce.

Pujols saved him here, as you see. That's the effort from Albert Pujols. The president very thankful there.

And we talked about him short-arming it. Here he is practicing here, Campbell. Looks good here. Better than he was. This was before the game practicing in the batting cages, but the president missed.

He's a hoop player. Baseball is not his game. He talked about it with Joe Buck as he entered the broadcast booth right after that pitch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) JOE BUCK, SPORTSCASTER: Did you have any practice before? Did you forget the baseline moves for a while and put the basketball down and then pick up the baseball?

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I tell you what, we did a little practicing in the Rose Garden. But what is true is I'm a great baseball fan. I did not play organized baseball when I was a kid. And so, I think some of these natural moves aren't so natural to me.


BROWN: All right. All right. So, I get it. Not really his thing.


BROWN: And I know we're having a little fun with it. But some of his critics have been really frankly pretty harsh about this, haven't they?

GALANOS: They've been pretty brutal. As I mentioned, the jeans. Let's get right to that.

Late night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel keying off on the president. Let's listen.


JIMMY KIMMEL, HOST, "JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE": Obama looks weird in jeans, doesn't he? He looks like my Aunt Linda in jeans.

Crease down the middle --



GALANOS: There it is. You expect the comedians to launch in there. But Rush Limbaugh didn't waste any time either going after the president and the media. Let's give that a listen.


RUSH LIMBAUGH, CONSERVATIVE TALK SHOW HOST: I just said the president throws like a girl. He golfs like a girl admittedly. He throws like a girl.

George W. Bush is a man. George W. Bush fired a strike first pitch Yankee stadium after 9/11. They made fun of Bush as a klutz.

Gerald Ford was an all-American college football player. They called him Mr. Potato Head. Obama's a big athletic klutz and the drive-bys state run media, the sports media are trying to portray him as the second coming of Michael Jordan.


GALANOS: There you have it.

He mentioned Michael Jordan. I'll say this, President Obama should stick to basketball...


GALANOS: ... skip the baseball and probably the bowling, too, as we saw during the campaign.

BROWN: You know, I don't even care that he throws like a girl. The mom jeans do bother me a little bit.

GALANOS: That's what one of my producers said. What's with the jeans? And I didn't even notice.

BROWN: Come on. You have jeans (ph) hipper than that.

All right. Mike Galanos -- Mike, thanks very much. Appreciate it.

GALANOS: That's sweet (ph), Campbell. Thanks.

BROWN: See you.

So, breaking news we have been tracking for you tonight. We've been telling you about the double murder of those parents down in Pensacola, the 17 -- parents of 17 children.

We're about to go back live to Florida as we understand where the sheriff is about to hold a news conference. Stay with us. We'll be right back.


BROWN: We want to go back now to tonight's breaking news on the Florida couple, parents of 17 children shot to death in their home last week.

Ed Lavandera is live for us once again from Pensacola tonight. Ed, what have you got?

ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Campbell. We're waiting for authorities here in Pensacola to hold another press conference which is expected to start at 9:30 Eastern. And so we will bring the latest to you out here throughout the night here on CNN.

But what we expect to hear at this point, and we're still trying to clarify the details of what is going to happen. But authorities are telling us to expect the announcement of yet another arrest. Even though authorities here say they have arrested the seven people they believe were on the property the night the Billings couple was killed, that they continue to talk to people of interest.

In fact we know that Pamela Long, the woman authorities have been looking for throughout the day is right now upstairs speaking with investigators. So whether or not she's the one that turns out to be arrested tonight or if it's that eighth person that we have been talking about extensively as well, we do not know. We expect to get some clarification on that here shortly -- Campbell.

BROWN: All right. Ed Lavandera reporting for us from Pensacola. As Ed was saying, we await that news conference from the sheriff's department. We'll have information for you.

That is it for us tonight. "LARRY KING LIVE" coming up right now. They will continue tracking this story as well. We'll see you right back here tomorrow night.


LARRY KING, HOST, "LARRY KING LIVE" (voice-over): Tonight, just revealed, the shocking footage of Michael Jackson with his hair on fire. We'll show you what could have started the King of Pop on painkillers.

The horrifying moment that may have changed his life. The never before seen images exposed second and third degree burns. Are the injuries to blame for Jackson's reported dependence on drugs?

And then, Jesse Ventura. He calls Sarah Palin a quitter. What's he calling Senator Al Franken and his questioning of Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor?

The former governor of Minnesota sounds off next on LARRY KING LIVE.