Return to Transcripts main page

CNN Larry King Live

Interview with Jon Gosselin

Aired October 01, 2009 - 21:00   ET


LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, Jon Gosselin exclusive and the scandal that could ruin reality TVs famous family. His name has been dropped from the show. He wants to delay his divorce from Kate. And now he's threatening to shut down production.

Is it about money or the kids or an out of control ego?

He's here to explain everything and Kate's got a response and Jon Gosselin is in the hot seat.

And it's all next on LARRY KING LIVE.

Good evening.

We welcome Jon Gosselin and his attorney, Mark Jay Heller.

Kate Gosselin's attorney will join us later in the hour.

All kinds of sensational news swirls around Jon and the show that made him famous. TLC is renaming the program starting next month. It's no longer "Jon and Kate Plus 8," it's just "Kate Plus 8".

Meantime, Jon wants TLC to cease and desist production of the show. He's also posted a sign outside the family's home in Pennsylvania that says "no film crew or production staff from TLC is permitted on this property under penalty of trespass."

And Jon has asked a court-appointed arbitrator to put the brakes on his and Kate's divorce proceedings.

So lots to get into.

Did you see that TLC thing coming, Jon?

Did you know they were going to make this a one show, not you?

JON GOSSELIN: No, I had no idea. I found out just like everyone else, on an A.P. Newswire.

KING: They didn't call you or anything?

J. GOSSELIN: No, they didn't call me or anything. I was actually standing in my manager's office, Mike Heller, account resources. And I -- I just saw it on the laptop, just as an A.P. Newswire.

And I was like, what? What's going on?

KING: Were you shocked?

J. GOSSELIN: Yes, I was totally shocked. It was definitely like I had -- it was totally out of blue.

KING: Did Kate -- you talk to Kate, right?


KING: Or you don't?

J. GOSSELIN: I don't talk to Kate.

KING: She didn't give you any warning?

J. GOSSELIN: No, I had no warning at all.

KING: All right. Here's a statement, earlier this week, that TLC announced its decision. It said: "Given the recent changes in the family dynamics, it only makes sense for us to refresh and recalibrate the program to keep pace with the family. The family has evolved and we're attempting to evolve with it. We feel that Kate's journey really resonates with our viewers -- resonates with our viewers, rather. Additionally, the network is in development on a Kate project for 2010."

Isn't that their right?

J. GOSSELIN: Yes, it's their right to do whatever they want. But it's also my right as a parent and as the father of my kids to determine whether the show is good for my family and if it's not for my family.

KING: In that same announcement, TLC said it would continue its exclusive relationship with you and that you'd be on the show, but on a less regular basis.

J. GOSSELIN: That's fine. And I'm asking not to be on the show and I'm asking my children not to be on the show. I mean, I don't want them to film anymore. I don't think it's healthy for them. And I -- the reason I don't think it's healthy for them is that we're going through a divorce right now. And I don't think it should be televised. And I think my kids should be taken off the show.

KING: It was OK in the past.

Do you think it was ever healthy, really?

J. GOSSELIN: I don't. And, you know, if you were in my position, what would you do?

Stop filming?

I mean that's what I want to do. I don't think it's -- I don't think it's healthy for them. And, you know, now I have a sense of empowerment. Before, I didn't have any representation. You know, I -- I -- I take blame for not being an initiator. I was an avoider. I was passive. I (INAUDIBLE)...

KING: When you signed the contract you had representation?

J. GOSSELIN: No representation.

KING: No lawyer, no agent?

J. GOSSELIN: No one. Nothing.

KING: What's with the -- the "no TLC crew or production staff sign?"

What was the posting that sign?

J. GOSSELIN: Yes, I posted the sign today because I don't want -- until we resolve the issue, I don't want any filming, you know, at my house. I mean I -- I have the joint shared custody of my kids and I have every right and it's my voice, as well.

Can he do that, Mark?

MARK JAY HELLER, GOSSELIN'S ATTORNEY: As a matter of law, when an individual has joint custody, there is no decision that can be made without his consent. And the truth of the matter is, Larry, we had asked weeks ago for this production to stop. And the minute TLC learned we were coming on Larry King's show and we were going to announce on the show that we were putting the brakes on the divorce and putting the brakes on the show and disclose the reasons why, which would have been very embarrassing to them, as you'll learn later on in this program, they decided to save their face and preempt this individual by coming out and firing him before it became public that he fired the show.

KING: Wait a minute. He didn't fire the show, the show fired him.

HELLER: Well, what really.

KING: You just said that. They called him and they blind-sided him, he said, and they -- they fired him.

HELLER: Well, what really happened is previous to that announcement, I notified them that Jon was going to go on the show and he was going to ask that the show be terminated (INAUDIBLE)...

KING: He was going to say that on the show?

HELLER: And not only was he going to say that on the show, but he was going to tell the reasons why. And on September 25th, their lawyer sent me a letter in which they said -- when they learned we were going to go on the show, Jon should not proceed with his appearance. And when we told them we were going to still appear and we were going to, in essence, terminate the show, they then said yesterday we'd better do something first.

KING: All right. Just hours ago, TLC issued this statement: "We are aware of Jon Gosselin's recent statements and remain deeply disappointed at his continued erratic behavior. He and the family were shooting as recently as last Friday without incident and his latest comments are grossly inaccurate, without merit and clearly opportunistic. Despite Jon Gosselin's repeated self-destructive and unprofessional actions, he remains under exclusive contract with TLC. Direct filming of the children has been currently suspended, pending further conversation between both parents."

What's wrong with that statement, Jon?

J. GOSSELIN: What's wrong with that statement is it's not opportunistic to me. I don't want to film. If I wanted to film, I wouldn't be here right now. I would just be, like, OK, we're going to film, we're going to take the money and -- and that's what we're going to do. It's not healthy for my kids to be going through this.

I had an epiphany one day. I just looked in the mirror and I said I don't want to be this person anymore. I made mistakes. I know I messed up. I do regret a lot of things. But I have to learn from those mistakes and move forward.

There's -- I have a lot -- I have a great lawyer now, Mark Heller -- Mike Heller, who's my manager. I have a great family support from his family, the Glassman family, Haley. And, you know, I have -- I have this sense of empowerment, that I have to take back my life. I have to.

KING: Are you sorry you did this show in the first place?


KING: You can't say that, you made a lot of money.

J. GOSSELIN: Well, here's the thing. In the beginning, we -- it was for financial purposes, yes. But I can't tell you if I would have a better life then or now.

I mean it's like, you know, would I have been better off?

I don't know. I could have been living in a hole somewhere or, you know, you don't know. It's -- that's hard. I could...

KING: Based on what's happened, do you have regrets?

J. GOSSELIN: Based on what happened -- yes, I definitely have regrets.

KING: We're going to take a break.

We'll be right back with more.

Lots ahead -- don't go away -- on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KING: We're back.

This summer, Kate's sister Jodi and her husband went public with allegations that your kids were being exploited and overworked. In comments to Radar Online you denounced their criticism as ridiculous.



J. GOSSELIN: The kids look like they're having a good time. They're having a great time. And, I mean, honestly, we film like an hour-and-a-half, two hours on camera. They love the camera crew. They love all those guys. They make nicknames for them, you know, the P.A.s -- the production assistants are there. They play with the kids. We all get along and play together. And it's like a family environment.


KING: Are you sorry you said that?

J. GOSSELIN: Yes, I'm sorry I said that. You know, and I do...

KING: But you meant it, didn't you, when you...

J. GOSSELIN: Correct. And I can make mistakes, as well. And, you know, I do regret it. But I talked to Jodi today and...

KING: Your sister-in-law?

J. GOSSELIN: Yes, Kate's sister-in-law.

And, you know, if I would have said opposite of that, if I would have said TLC is exploiting the kids or we are, I'm in breach of contract. So either way...

KING: But you weren't lying, were -- I mean you meant it...

J. GOSSELIN: No, no. I meant it and I felt that way. And now, looking back, and -- and what has recently happened, after filing for divorce, I mean this has been a media explosion. This is ridiculous. I've been on the cover of magazines since January, you know. And it's just -- it's just crazy. I want -- I want the fodder to stop and I want Kate and I to mediate. I want us to become friends. I want us to figure out our marriage and I don't want it to be filmed anymore. And I don't want the kids involved. And I just feel it's (INAUDIBLE).

KING: How well did you get along with the people at TLC?

J. GOSSELIN: I don't...

KING: Really.

J. GOSSELIN: Really?

KING: Um-hmm.

J. GOSSELIN: I don't get along to the people at TLC.

KING: You didn't all along?

J. GOSSELIN: Not all along. Since January, I started getting calls from the executives, which is so rare. You really don't really hear from them.

KING: And what were they saying?

J. GOSSELIN: Basically, that I'm in breach of contract and, you know, I can't go out. They put me on house arrest. They gave me a bodyguard for three weeks.

KING: House arrest?

J. GOSSELIN: Yes. It's house arrest. They give you -- I had 24-7 bodyguards.

KING: Are you saying, Mark, that this contract is null and -- are you saying this isn't a contract?

HELLER: This is a null contract for the following reason. As mentioned earlier, at the time that these two struggling people were desperate for money, TLC came with a cadre of lawyers, the most sophisticated contract you've ever seen and said sign. They had no manager. He had no lawyer. He had no idea of what he was signing.

What's more upsetting is the contract provided that there was no compensation specifically for the kids. These kids have been working for the past four years without any specified contract being attributed them.

KING: But wouldn't it be in violation of a child labor law...

HELLER: Well, that...

KING: have a contract with a kid?

HELLER: ...that's precisely so. And the investigation has been undertaken by the Labor Department, which may expose the respective parties to almost $2 million of fines because they require a permit. TLC, contrary to what was represented to Jon, never got a permit for the kids to act; never got pay permit for the location and these provisions render it as against public policy.

KING: But you didn't bring that up while he was gainfully happy there.

HELLER: I was not his attorney and that's why this has all come about... KING: OK. Now we...

HELLER: the last few weeks.

KING: This is from TLC. They say: "There is no legal or factual justification -- justification for asserting that the agreement with TLC may be null and void. TLC has no doubt that its agreement with the Gosselin family is legally enforceable."

Are you saying here now that you're going to court?

Are you suing them?

Are you going to court to say this is null and void?

HELLER: Larry, not only...

KING: What's your next action?

HELLER: ...not only will we be going to the state court, but being on this program before you and your viewers, we're in court. We're in the court of public opinion. And I defy TLC to satisfy you and your viewers that they are right and Jon is wrong. This contract is void and this contract is detrimental to this man's family.

KING: Concerning the compensation for the children, we also have a response on that. You claim they failed to designate appropriate compensation for the children.

Here's what TLC says: "Contractually, the matter of designating specific compensation for children is the responsibility of Jon and Kate. However, TLC has actively and regularly encouraged the parents to establish compensation, trust arrangements for the children. Our understanding is that Kate has set up a trust for the benefit of the children with a substantial portion of the income from the show."

Doesn't that answer it?

HELLER: No. The Labor Department will give the real answer, not the spin that TLC wants.

The Labor Department is going to say where's the permit?

Where's the money?

How many hours have they worked?

What have you paid them?

KING: Jon, while you were doing this show, for how many years now?


KING: Did you ever think to yourself, I need some permission from the state or some permit for these kids to be on television? J. GOSSELIN: I was unaware of even a requirement for a permit. I thought that was up to the production company. The only time ever I realized it was when the Labor Department contacted our attorney and said hey, you don't have, you know, a permit to film.

KING: Did TLC ask you to set up a trust for the children?


KING: We'll be back with more of Jon Gosselin and Mark J. Heller on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE.

Back in 60 seconds.


KING: We're back.

By the way, Mark, with respect to the permits, the location permits, TLC says: "Location permits are not required for documentary filmmaking."

HELLER: This is a staged proceedings. They're under direction and this is their argument. But, clearly, this is production. Remember, TLC made $186 million, rumor has it, for the quarter, as attributable to the "Jon and Kate" show. And they've really become a monster in Jon's mind. And Jon's not going to let this monster swallow up his family.

KING: All right. But you made a lot of money, didn't you, Jon, frankly?


KING: Not?


KING: Well, what did you make -- last year?

J. GOSSELIN: What did I make total, including the show?

KING: No, just the show (INAUDIBLE).

J. GOSSELIN: Just the show?

Maybe a million dollars after...

KING: Compared to profit.

J. GOSSELIN: After taxes it's $500,000 divided by 10.

KING: And Kate also made a million?


KING: A million for both of you.

J. GOSSELIN: It's -- the -- the agreement is the Gosselin family. We're not -- it's not broken out. That's what we made -- $22,500 per episode.

KING: And you're saying not fair in relation to the profits.

HELLER: They made $186 million and that money isn't allocated. The Labor Department may come along and say, you know what, you never paid the kids anything. It's Jon, one sit -- one unit, Kate and then they take a third, a third and a third. And we may say, you know what, they're going to split that million dollars and you give another half a million dollars to the kids.

KING: You're giving that up, though, now Jon?

I mean they could have had to pay you maybe under this contract, right?

J. GOSSELIN: Yes, I'm giving it up because I -- I need to be a father. I need to be a father and I need to take my kids off the show.


J. GOSSELIN: And, you know, my kids have voiced their opinions, too. I was on the shoot a couple of months ago. It was 96 degrees outside. We were shooting outside with the kids. It was my custody day, my shoot. My kids went inside the house, put their bathing suits on and jumped in the pool. Shoot over.

What am I supposed to do?

I went down to the pool and I watched them. I said I -- I can't do anything about it.

KING: We have a Tweeter question, Tweeted versus King's Things, our Twitter spot: "When they get older, how will you explain to your kids your decision to let them be on TV in the first place?"

J. GOSSELIN: I have thought about this numerous, numerous times. I mean I -- there's two ways it could go. They could either say, hey, you know, we had a great opportunity, we traveled a lot, we did a lot of things or they can say why did you expose my -- our lives to this?

Why did you do this?

And that's the one that's sticking in my head. That's the one I'm thinking, well, you know what, they're five and eight now, let's get them off TV. Let -- let's let them experience a normal childhood.

KING: Are you feeling guilt?

J. GOSSELIN: Absolutely.

KING: What is Kate feeling? J. GOSSELIN: I can't speak for Kate.

KING: When was the last time you spoke to her?

J. GOSSELIN: Three-and-a-half weeks ago.

KING: Did she mention anything about any of this?

J. GOSSELIN: No. She wants to continue with the show to financially benefit maybe herself and -- and -- and the kids.

KING: More after this.

Don't go away.


KING: We're back with Jon Gosselin and Mark J. Heller.

Just so we get this straight, Jon, you claimed that you were in discussions to pull the plug on the program and take the kids off the show for weeks prior to the announcement Tuesday.

Here's what TLC said: "Jon did not request that TLC pull the plug on the program until after the network announced that it was changing the title to "Kate Plus 8." Until the network announced that the show would be retitled, "Kate Plus 8," Jon's request to the network related solely to his demands for money and the network releasing him from his exclusivity obligations and to be provided with a motorcycle that had been paid for by TLC and used in an episode of the program."


J. GOSSELIN: We have documented proof. As soon as I hired Mark J. Heller, I went ahead with the proceedings to stop doing the show.

KING: So what they're saying now is not true?

J. GOSSELIN: The only part is the motorcycle. It was promised to me and they didn't give it to me. They said based on my good behavior -- based on my good behavior, I might get the motorcycle by the end of season five. I don't even care about the motorcycle. Keep it. Keep it, sell it, donate it to charity, whatever you want to do.

But guess what?

I want my kids off the show.

KING: But, they're saying, Mark, you never made a request until after they announced they were changing it.

HELLER: From the very first week that I became Jon's attorney, I had an explosive discussion with them as soon as I learned about how they had exploited Jon and his wife when they executed this contract. And I told them that this had to be addressed immediately and they stopped communicating with me. I've been talking about pulling the plug on this show ever since I became counsel. And Jon made a decision and I followed it.

KING: And right now, this show is on the air as "Kate Plus 8?"

J. GOSSELIN: I don't think it -- I think...

HELLER: I think the show is probably in reruns.

KING: And it starts...

HELLER: They call it hiatus.

KING: The new one starts when?

HELLER: They claim it's going to start in November. But I guarantee you, no judge, if we get to that point, is going to require these kids to participate without the consent of the father.

KING: You're going to try to prevent that show from going on?

HELLER: It's -- I can tell you now, it's a done deal.

KING: A done deal?

HELLER: It's a done deal. I've been out there for 40 years and I don't know any judge in any jurisdiction that's going to say to a father, who doesn't believe that his children are being handled properly in this sort of production, let the kids keep reduce producing because TLC is making $186 million.

KING: One other legal thing. You curriculum -- you maintained that the production for "Jon and Kate Plus 8" doesn't carry over to a new show called "Kate Plus 8?"

HELLER: The contract, such as it may exist, was a specific designation of a program involving the whole Gosselin family. The minute they terminated that production and that title, they had to get a new contract...

KING: TLC said...

HELLER: ...which they haven't done.

KING: TLC said that assertion is flat out wrong. The network has an expressed contractual right to retitle the show.

Be that as it may, the $186 million, how do you know that?

HELLER: This was reported in a lot of journals. It was a compilation that was done by people that track revenues. And I read it, frankly, in "The New York Post." And the story said that the majority of that revenue was attributed to the "Jon and Kate Plus 8" program.

KING: Well, that's what the network made, you're saying? HELLER: That's correct.

KING: And they -- OK.

Kate was on this show in late August, about two months after the divorce filing and the TV episode announcing the breakup.

Here's some of what she said.


KING: Is he a good father?


KING: Why the pause?

K. GOSSELIN: Um, his decisions right now are not ones that I would necessarily make. But down deep in his heart, I know that he is.

KING: Do you share the same faith?


KING: So they will be raised in that same culture?

K. GOSSELIN: Absolutely.

KING: Do you agree on how school should be handled?


KING: Those are two key things.


KING: So that -- that's a plus?

K. GOSSELIN: There's a lot we agree on.

KING: What do you disagree on?

K. GOSSELIN: I -- I just think it's more the -- the current things.

KING: You mean day to day things?

K. GOSSELIN: Um, not so much the day to day. I think that I'm looking more toward the future and the decisions of today that affect tomorrow, more so than he is.


KING: Did you watch that show, Jon?

J. GOSSELIN: No, I did not.


Is she a good mother?

J. GOSSELIN: Yes, she's a good mother.

KING: Based on what she said, would you disagree with anything she said?

J. GOSSELIN: No. I -- I made mistakes. I learned from my mistakes. You know, I -- you know, I regret things. (INAUDIBLE) before it. I mean you've been through a divorce. I mean you know. And, you know -- you know, a lot of people ask me, you know, in the Chris Cuomo interview, I said "despise." I really didn't mean despise. I regret saying that word. I despise the fact -- you know, I was very emotional.

KING: I understand.

J. GOSSELIN: And sometimes in a divorce, you just say things that, you know, you don't really mean.

KING: A photo of you and a grade schoolteacher named Deana Hummel leaving a club ignited the whole frenzy that led to the public unraveling.

Are you still involved with her?

J. GOSSELIN: No. I mean, I -- I can't even be friends with her. She's a teacher. She's an inner city schoolteacher. And, you know, the paparazzi affected her life. I didn't want her to lose her job anymore. The one thing involved...


J. GOSSELIN: No, no. We were just friends. I mean I didn't (INAUDIBLE) a thing. That one picture, I mean, what was I supposed to do, drive home drunk?

So she -- she drove me home and, you know -- she didn't even drive me home. She drove to a diner and my friend Joe, which is her cousin, picked me up and -- and drove me home.

KING: All right. Kate's divorce lawyer will join us.

Another side to what you've heard so far, next.


KING: With us Jon Gosselin and Mark J. Heller.

And joining us now from Philadelphia is Mark Momjian. He is Kate Gosselin's divorce attorney.

They've asked me to ask, are you associated with Cheryl Young, Mark Momjian?


KING: Oh, yes. They knew about Sheryl. They didn't know you. So, guys, Jon --

MOMJIAN: They'll get to know me soon.

KING: OK. In the midst of all this tumult, Kate Gosselin has issued a statement. She says, "I'm saddened and confused by Jon's public media statements. Jon has never expressed any concerns to me about our children being involved in the show, and, in fact, is on record as saying he believes the show benefits our children and was taping on Friday with the kids. I checked in regularly with each of the kids to be sure they want to participate in and continue with the show and will continue to do so.

"I do the show for my family, because I believe it provides us opportunities we wouldn't otherwise have. Jon used to share that belief until as recently as the day the network announced the name change of the show and indicated that Jon would have a lesser role in the show. It appears that Jon's priority is Jon and his interests. My priority remains our children and their well being."

Before we hear from her lawyer, you want to respond to that statement, Jon?

GOSSELIN: Absolutely. My interests are getting my kids off TV. That sounds like a typical TLC response.

KING: That's her response.

GOSSELIN: Yes, OK. You know, being in it, I kind of understand. You know, I'm here to apologize to Kate. I'm here to apologize to a lot of people. I have made mistakes. I apologize to Haley. I have made mistakes. She's the only person that stood behind me and has supported me. The Heller family, the Glassman family, you know, I love them all. I love Haley.

But, you know, I really have to be a father here. I can't be a kid anymore. I have to be a man.

KING: You want the show over with?

GOSSELIN: Correct.

KING: That's your goal?

GOSSELIN: Correct.

KING: Mark, what is your position? First, they want to delay the divorce proceeding past the Thanksgiving date with the arbitrator. Do you agree with that?

MOMJIAN: Well, they tried to delay the arbitration. And the arbitrator denied their request. I don't know why they don't bring that to the attention of the public. They seem to bring every other fact to the attention of the public. They tried to delay because Jon wants to delay the entire case. And the arbitrator said no, and the case is going to go forward.

Timing is everything. And in this case, it's clear that his timing is connected to his diminished role on the show. Just last week, September 25th, he was taping with the children. All of a sudden, he has an epiphany. Maybe he'll have another or new epiphany tomorrow. Or maybe he will have another epiphany the following week.

The parties in this case agreed, with lawyers representing them, that the party that had physical custody of the children would make the decisions regarding the taping of the children. He signed an agreement to that affect. If he wants to change the terms of that agreement, he has to go to court.

Why hasn't he gone to court? Why hasn't he filed a custody action? Why hasn't he said this to a judge? He wants to do it on your show. And he wants to do it on other media outlets. But he doesn't want to follow the process that the Pennsylvania courts have established to do it.

KING: Got you. Mark Heller, how would you respond to that?

HELLER: First of all, this is the first that I'm learning that there's been any denial of our request to put the brakes on this proceedings. And although counsel believes that timing is important, I think family values, as does my client, is important. And there's no rush. They've been married for ten years. And if these two parents are communicating now only by text mail and not by speaking and words, how can we go into a court and address the more important issues?

KING: What's wrong with delaying it?

MOMJIAN: Well, first of all, there's no reason to delay it, because there is no prospect of reconciliation in this case. He doesn't want to go to marriage counseling. He doesn't want to say that the marriage is irretrievably, you know, alive and not broken.

In this instance, we have a case where the parties agreed to arbitrate their matter. They agreed to share legal custody. It means that he has an obligation to consult with Kate on important decisions. Why is he not talking to his own wife about these important decisions?

KING: Is that not a fair point, Jon?

GOSSELIN: I haven't seen Kate in three and a half weeks.

KING: Why not call her?

GOSSELIN: I have tried to call her. I text her. I mean --

KING: She doesn't answer? Have you talked about delaying the divorce proceeding with her? GOSSELIN: Yes, I want to work things out.

KING: You and her that decide it. Not the lawyers.

GOSSELIN: Listen, we know we're not going to be husband and wife anymore. But we're always going to be mom and dad. We have to work together against this. We have to pull our kids off of television and work this out as a family.

KING: She doesn't want to pull them off?

GOSSELIN: Correct.

KING: The conversation with Jon and Kate continues. Join in by logging on to, and click on the blog and let your voice be heard. We love your comments. Sometimes we read them. We do read them all. Might throw some on the air. Back after this.


KING: The former "Star Magazine" reporter Kate Major (ph) claims that you two, you, Jon, and her, had a fling. Here's some of what she told HLN's "Showbiz Tonight." Watch.


KATE MAJOR, "STAR MAGAZINE": Jon told me that he was falling for me. He called me the new Kate, and referred to Kate Gosselin as his ex-Kate or the old Kate, and he is just -- I fell for him. I completely believed everything that he said. I was reluctant to get very romantically involved. I really didn't know what to do at that point, because it had blown up into such a media frenzy.


KING: Want to comment, Jon?

GOSSELIN: The things I've done in the past are mistakes.

KING: You don't see her anymore?

GOSSELIN: That's irrelevant. No, I don't see her anymore. But it's irrelevant. I have to learn from my mistakes and move forward.

KING: It led to the break-up, didn't it? It's part of this whole story.

GOSSELIN: No. Kate Gosselin came to me in October of last year and said she was going to live her separate life, and I'm going to live mine.

KING: Nothing to do with other women or anything?


KING: Nothing. GOSSELIN: No, absolutely not. I went to counseling. I have a 22,000 dollar bill from last year. I tried to save our marriage. I tried do everything.

KING: What about the former babysitter, Stephanie Santoro (ph), told "In Touch" that she had an affair with you during the month that she worked as your nanny?


KING: Not true?

GOSSELIN: Not true. Again, I made mistakes. I trusted people. I'm a genuine person. I give everyone a chance. Some people just take advantage.

KING: Kate was asked about Stephanie's claims during an appearance on "The View." Here's what she said.


WHOOPI GOLDBERG, "THE VIEW": Kate, I know you wanted to address the "In Touch" cover story that just hit newsstands, where a baby- sitter claimed that she slept with your husband, a claim he says is not true. You wanted to address that, I'm told.

K. GOSSELIN: Well, it's just, I guess -- it's the article of the week. And basically my only comment on that is -- you're asking for my comment -- is, I mean, just based on the behavior of the last several months, am I surprised? No.


KING: Mark, from the -- I know you're the attorney and you are representing her best interests, but why keep this show going? Other than money, how does this benefit the children, which, by the way, are the only people that count in this, right? They're adults. They can get on with their lives. The kids don't have a say. Have you ever talked to your client about why she keeps it up?

MOMJIAN: It's not a lawyer's decision to make in a case.

KING: I know. I'm asking you personally.

MOMJIAN: Well, I'm just going to answer it the best way I can. Jon and Kate agreed with each other that the children would continue their participation in the show. If Kate thought for one second that this was detrimental to the children's best interests, she would take the children off the show.

Jon has always encouraged and supported the children's active participation in the show. He has admitted it tonight, and maybe he will admit it tomorrow after he has another epiphany on this case. The reality is that if Jon wants to do something to end the children's participation in the show, there's a process. Why isn't he following that process? Why isn't he calling Kate and trying to work it out? KING: Good question.

GOSSELIN: First of all, TLC is not the parents of my kids, and this guy is not the parents, no offense, of my kids. I'm the parent of my kids. TLC put a letter out that said either Kate or Jon -- if either Kate or Jon feel it's detrimental to their kids, not Kate and Jon -- Kate or Jon -- we'll stop the show. Fine. It's detrimental to my kids. It is definitely detrimental. It is not healthy.

KING: Why is this show on the air?

GOSSELIN: It's their words. I feel it's detrimental.

KING: Are you going to court over this, Mark Heller?

HELLER: We're going to go to court.

KING: When?

HELLER: We're going to go to court. Well, we're in court right now, as I said, the court of public opinion. Let me tell you something, lawyers -- and I'm the first one to admit it -- frequently get in the way when people are going through divorces. I'm shocked to hear counsel say he wants to rush forward with this case. It's not his choice. It's his clients' choice. And how can he bring two parties into a court to resolve their issues when they don't even communicate.

We've got to put the brakes on this, and these two have to talk. Otherwise, we're wasting everybody's time.

KING: We'll be right back. Don't go away.


KING: We have breaking news. David Letterman, during a taping of tonight's "Late Show," said that there has been a recent attempt made to extort money from him. Letterman referred the matter to the Special Prosecution Bureau of the Manhattan district attorney's office. An individual was arrested earlier today.

He told the audience, "this morning I did something I've never done in my life," said Letterman. "I had to go downtown and testify before a Grand Jury." Letterman said that in his testimony he acknowledged sexual relationships with members of his staff. "My response to that is, yes, I have. Would it be embarrassing if it were made public? Perhaps it would." Said Letterman, "I feel like I need to protect these people, and I need to certainly protect my family."

We'll be back. Well, let me continue with this. This has been -- this has been quite a night, as we say. The show, do you expect to be able to knock it off?

HELLER: I can assure your viewers and you that this show will definitely not go forward with the eight children under any circumstance, because I have confidence in the courts. Every child is a ward of the court. And they will never subject the children to this show if the father believes it's detrimental.

KING: Mark, do you question the fact that these children didn't have permits? Mark?

MOMJIAN: I'm not a labor lawyer, but I don't believe the permits were required. And I have to tell you, I disagree with Mr. Heller's assessment. And I welcome the opportunity to prove it to a judge, and not to do it on television, but to prove it in court. And I think that's what's going to happen. But right now it hasn't happened, and I think the reasons are obvious.

Jon wants to try this in the media. He doesn't want to go to a judge. He doesn't want to deal with the question of the best interests of the children. That's Kate's sole concern.

KING: And you're saying -- you're saying that it's in the best interest of the children to be on television?

MOMJIAN: I think that the parents get to make that decision, and one parent can't unilaterally make the decision not to have the children go forward. These children were participating as recently as Friday. I mean, and that's by agreement of both parties. What has happened since Friday, Larry? What's happened that gives Jon the right to unilaterally make any decision in connection with the taping of the show? If he wants to --

KING: Jon, how do you respond? Let him respond.

GOSSELIN: First of all, Friday -- he is not an entertainment attorney. So, Friday I didn't even know they were filming. I got a call from my daughter saying they were filming. I don't know Kate's filming schedule. So, you know, when we're moving forward, I mean, who cares when they're filming.

KING: -- injunction to stop them from doing "Kate Plus Eight."

HELLER: Larry, I heard counsel challenge me to go into court. I would rather challenge him to do what is right in his representation of his client, and give these two people an opportunity, without their attorneys battling in court, to sit town and do what's right as parents, and settle it. Exactly.

KING: We live in a law abiding society. Courts settle things.

HELLER: But they can't settle anything if the people are not communicating. And the lawyers need to step aside and let these people talk.

KING: We'll take a phone call next, right after these words.


KING: Let's take a call for our guests. To White Stone, New York. Hello.

CALLER: Hi, Jon. I'm a big "Jon and Kate Plus Eight" fan. My question is, over the past few months, your behavior has been very contradictory to how we see you on the show as a truly hands on dad. Who is the real Jon?

GOSSELIN: I'll answer clearly. I have made some mistakes, and I have learned from those mistakes. And, you know, I'm the real Jon. You guys have to remember, I quit my job, and I stayed home with the kids for two years while Kate traveled, spoke, and did all that stuff. I'm hands on. I changed 12,000 diapers in one year. You know, I took care of my wife when I was at the hospital. I did it all.

That is me. Now, when Kate wanted a divorce, when she filed for divorce, you know, I struggled. I snapped. I apologize for those things.


KING: What about -- we haven't discussed Haley Glassman, Jon, the 22-year-old daughter of Kate's plastic surgeon. You said you love her. You told that to our friend Chris Cuomo on ABC. Do you?

GOSSELIN: Absolutely.

KING: Are you going marry her?

GOSSELIN: I don't know yet. I'm not even divorced yet. We take things day by day. You know, she supports me. She has never wanted anything from me, never taken anything from me.

KING: Does she know the kids?

GOSSELIN: No, she doesn't. She knows of them. She met them a long time ago, four years ago. But it was just like for five minutes and then, you know, she was gone. She has seen Maddy and Kara (ph) before. She has never came to my house. We're not there yet.

KING: Mark, is there anything wrong with letting these two people sit down maybe, and iron this all out, without you or Mr. Heller present, and maybe come to an amicable conclusion, save a lot of money, and end this thing happily, maybe discuss how they're going to deal with the rest of the TLC? Is this solvable without you two?

MOMJIAN: I hope so. I think that's Kate's preference, that she and Jon have an open line of communication to talk with one another on important decisions. Jon agreed that he would do that. He hasn't done it, in terms of the children's participation on the show. He hasn't reached out to Kate. He hasn't explained to her what her reasons are.

But I still have hope that these parents will do the responsible thing, talk to one another, try to work it out between themselves. If they can't do it, they're going to have to have an arbiter do it or a judge.

KING: Jon, you're in love with Haley. Is she happy that you're trying to delay the divorce? A Twitterer asked that. GOSSELIN: Well, I can't speak for Haley. But, you know, we talked today. You know, she stands behind me no matter what. Whether we're together or not, she said she stands behind me. She's a rock. She's always been there for me. Her family has always been there for me. The Hellers have always been there for me, since I've met them.

You know, I just have to move forward. I have to take initiative. I've been passive. I let things happen. I have to be a man. I have to grow up. You know, I believe Haley will stand by me and, you know --

KING: When is "Kate Plus Eight" scheduled to go on? Do we have a date?

HELLER: We were told that it's going to go on in November. But what I want to say is very important. Divorcing couples have the power to make healthy and appropriate decisions for themselves when they're ending the marriage, and to take into most concern and consideration the well-being of their children and family values. And Jon is determined to do that and to become a model for other divorcing families. There are over a million of them.

KING: We have remaining moments coming up. Don't go away.


KING: We only have a little time left. Mr. Momjian, they're pointing out to me -- are you aware that it's an arbitrator involved here, not yet a judge, right?

MOMJIAN: Well, that's the point I was making. The parties did reach a consensus that any economic claims rising out of the divorce action would be submitted to an arbitrator. So it is an indication that the parties can work and try to have a means of getting this case resolved.

Jon wants to delay that process. He asked the arbitrator to delay that process. The arbitrator refused.

HELLER: I don't know anything about an arbitrator refusing. He would have had to notify me. And counsel's focus seems to be money, seems to be the show going on. This man doesn't care about the money. He doesn't care about the show. And I don't think the arbitrator or the court would be concerned either. Their priority, and Jon's and, frankly, Kate's and counsel should be the well-being and the welfare of a family. That's what's important.

KING: Quickly?

MOMJIAN: The arbitrator has nothing to do with child custody issues. The arbitrator is only economic issues. If Jon or Kate have issues in connection with the children, relating to legal decisions, that has to be done in court. So far, Jon hasn't done anything. I think it's obvious the reasons why.

GOSSELIN: What he doesn't understand is our life is our show, and our show is our life. I want it to stop. I want it to stop completely.

KING: You think maybe you shouldn't have started it?

GOSSELIN: Probably.

KING: You made a lot of money.

GOSSELIN: Yes. In retrospect, yes.

KING: We shouldn't have known about you?

GOSSELIN: Correct.

KING: Sadly. OK. Thank you all. This has been very contentious. We expect to have all of our guests back.

All day today here on CNN we're revealing our top ten CNN Heroes of 2009. Since January 1st, we have received more than 9,000 nominations from 100 countries. All of the nominees are every day people who are changing the world. Anderson Cooper joins me now.

ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: That's right. At this hour, we want to announce our final hero. His name is Brad Blauser. Here's his profile. He's a Dallas native. He's given hundreds of disabled Iraqi kids free wheelchairs and new hope. After coming to Iraq as a civilian contractor and seeing a lot of disabled kids with no way to get around, Brad founded Wheelchairs For Iraqi Kids.

His program has provided wheelchairs to nearly 650 kids, Larry.

KING: I remember him well. I remember interviewing him. He is an amazing guy. Now what happens to our CNN heroes? Like what does it mean?

COOPER: Their lives really change. These are all people who saw a need or a problem and rather than waiting for someone else to step in to solve it, they took charge. Every one of our top ten heroes receives 25,000 dollars and a chance to become the CNN hero of the year, who is going to receive an additional 100,000 dollars.

You know there are a lot of award shows. But I've got to tell you, looking at our past heroes, this changes not only their lives, but it changes the lives of countless people who they help. It's really all up to our viewers who are going to vote.

KING: How do viewers vote?

COOPER: Well, the voting starts at 11:00 tonight, in just one hour Eastern time. We're running a "360" special at 11:00 p.m. to introduce you to all 10 heroes, to our blue ribbon panel of judges, and to show you how winning this changes lives.

Also at 11:00, you can start voting at Vote for your favorite.

KING: And the hero of the year will be announced Thanksgiving night, right?

COOPER: That's right. All-star tribute from the Kodak Theater in Los Angeles. I hope you'll be there, Larry.

KING: BY the way, we're going to have a special hero show that night, too. Don't forget to tune into "AC 360" special. That's 11:00 Eastern and Pacific time tonight.

Change the world. You vote, It's a noble thing. It's a great show. We congratulate our colleague, Anderson, for his involvement it in. We thank our guests for being with us tonight. Right now, it's time for Anderson Cooper and "AC 360." Anderson?