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Government on Brink of Shutdown; House Bill to Ensure Military Pay; Duck Boat Concerns; Patriots Hold Off Falcons Rally

Aired September 30, 2013 - 06:30   ET


KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: So, John, first you. I think it's kind of the question of the day, do you think there is still time for Congress to hammer out a deal before they hit the deadline?

JOHN AVLON, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, obviously, the clock is literally ticking, but there is a lack of urgency on Capitol Hill.

The Senate doesn't even convene until --

BOLDUAN: We feel it here. They feel it there, too. There's for the negotiations.

AVLON: Not so much. There is no active progress towards a solution by midnight right now. Now, no doubt there will have to be volleying, something back and forth. At some point, you're racing against the clock and you need to work to get that done and the work isn't happening.

BOLDUAN: So, attempting to be optimistic this early morning.


BOLDUAN: I know exactly. If there is an 11th-hour deal, if they can somehow do it, cooler heads prevail and they can pull it off today, is it possible to avoid any and all negative check impact for Americans?

FOROOHAR: Well, I have to say no, because if you look at the markets over the last few days, they're already jittery. You know, markets should actually be up right now, because the Federal Reserve has been pouring a lot of money into the economy. They're trying to make that happen. But, you know, we saw one day jump after the Fed announced it was going to keep pouring money in.

And then off the back of all this worry over what's going to happen in Washington, markets got jittery again. And even this morning, you can see in Asia, they're already down. So, I think that the impact is there. The bigger question is, is it going to keep rolling out into the economy?

Even a few days of shutdown could shave about 0.2 percent off of our economic growth. If it went on for a month, 1 percent, maybe 2 percent.

BOLDUAN: That's an unnecessary impact. There are already forces acting against our economy, the unnecessary impact. Which is such a problem. So, let's talk about the costs, in general -- political costs and economic costs.

First, let's do the political costs, when you look at our latest polling, the latest CNN/ORC poll, Republicans in Congress, they're going to face more of the blame for a shutdown when it's then the president will, 46 percent of Republicans in Congress will face the blame. Republicans know this, this number might be slightly different than previous polling we had. But it shows the same, gives the same message.

If Republicans know this, then what's the calculation?

AVLON: There is a lack of calculation. This is a charge into the bayonets. And Republican leaders know it. But they have been essentially forced to do it by their own base, and the more radical members of the House, which is why there is no game plan, there is not exit strategy. Congress is like a baby playing with a hammer right now. It's going to take a tool on the economy, as well as their own political prospects in the midterm election.

BOLDUAN: But it is, those who support the Tea Party more support standing on principles. And that's really what we are seeing here.

AVLON: Well, the question is, is it principles or ideological absolutism? What is the practical application? What is your end goal? What do think you are going to achieve? Because you got the president, there's Democrat in the White House and a Democratic Senate, any attempt to get a perfect solution is a non-starter -- which is why on the Sunday showings, they're all talking about compromise.

But it doesn't fit the way they're acting. That's about talking points, that's about spin. That's about CYA.

BOLDUAN: Rana, what's unique about this situation as well is you're not just dealing just with the government shutdown. You also have us coming up against the debt ceiling, just a few weeks later, how does history inform where we are headed next?

FOROOHAR: Well, the fact that you got these two back-to-back events that could potentially be coming down the pike is really kind of unprecedented. So, if you look back to 1995, we did have this brief government shutdown when Newt Gingrich and Bill Clinton couldn't come to an agreement. That shaved about a percentage point off of growth, 800,000 workers went home, furloughed, didn't get their pay.

But if we were to go into a default, to literally default on our debt, that would be a really catastrophic event. Just to give you a small sense, we had a minor technical default back in 1979, because the work process used to deal with this stuff wasn't working. Even that kicked interest rates up and resulted in about $12 billion of additional interest rate payments.

So, just that tiny little thing had that impact. If you get into a decided default, if we actually play with the trust in the U.S. government, that's a catastrophic economic event.

AVLON: That's why a lot of folks on Capitol Hill are saying, look, bring it on. If it has to happen, better the shutdown happen now than two weeks from now. Maybe this gives us time for people in Congress to feel some pain, to get it together before we hit the debt ceiling. And that's the full faith and credit of the United States.

BOLDUAN: That is definitely one way to lock at it. We'll see.

AVLON: We'll see.

BOLDUAN: All right. John Avlon, Rana, great to see you. Thank you very much.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Let's take a quick break here on NEW DAY. When we come back, the murder retrial of Amanda Knox, underway in Italy right now. Amanda Knox, not there, of course. The Seattle native says she is afraid to go back. We'll tell what she told us about that and what happens if they find her guilty and ask the U.S. to extradite her.

BOLDUAN: Also ahead, you've seen those duck tour boats starting on land. They venture out into sea. But you may have second thoughts about junk on one of those tours after a fire on one of the boats forced dozens overboard this past weekend. It turns out, the boats might be more dangerous than you think.


CUOMO: Welcome back to NEW DAY.

A government shutdown come mean no pay for military personnel. But a bill unanimously passed by the House could change that. It would guarantee military pay even during a shutdown. Remember how many of those families live paycheck to paycheck.

But that bill still has to pass the Senate. Some military families say they are worried because of that.

CNN Pentagon correspondent Barbara Starr is in Washington with that story.

Good morning, Barbara.


Well, you know, thousands of civilian workers at the Defense Department face furloughs, pay to the troops still under question. And that is just the beginning.


STARR (voice-over): For America's 1.4 million troops and their families, the shutdown means just one thing, pay checks could be delayed if a shutdown goes on for several days, and that means doing without because of Washington. Vivian Greentree's husband is overseas while she works and looks after two young children.

VIVIAN GREENTREE, MILITARY SPOUSE: They spent a large amount of time for this morning speaking about what we would do if he didn't get paid and how we would react to that with our own finances. And I know that's probably a conversation that has had through e-mail texting and FaceTime, Skype, for military families all over the country.

STARR: Many live paycheck to paycheck. At Fort Campbell, Kentucky, there is growing worry.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There's going to be bills that are going to be due. And those places like you can't tell the electric department, hey, I got an IOU.

STARR: Washington knows troops are unhappy, so the Republican- controlled House passed a measure to keep paying the troops in the shutdown. The Senate has yet to act.

But for America's veterans, the outlook is more dire because of the other crisis, raising the debt ceiling before the government runs out of money.

TOM TARANTINO, IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN VETERANS OF AMERICA: But if it goes longer than a few weeks, if Congress can't get their act together, this could hurt millions of veterans who count on these benefits for part of their care and services.

STARR: More than 3 million veterans receive disability payments. If there is no money, payments could stop.

New claims won't be processed. And current payments still might arrive late.

TARANTINO: It's what they node to pay rent, pay food. It's not their total income, but it is a significant part of it and taking that out of the mix because the government can't get its act together is really dangerous for these men and women who need it the most.


STARR: So you probably can't say it often enough this morning. The troops on the front lines could see their paychecks delayed and millions of disabled elderly ill veterans could have their disability checks stopped cold -- Kate.

BOLDUAN: All right. Barbara, thank you so much.

Let's go around the world now, starting in Rome, where Pope Francis is making a big announcement about sainthood this morning for two previous popes.

More on that with CNN's Ben Wedeman.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The date has been set 27 April, 2014, for the ceremony where the Vatican will declare Popes John Paul II and John XXIII as saints. Now, they represent two different trends within the church. John XXIII, who convened the Second Vatican Council, was seen as a liberal reformer, while Pope John Paul II was a staunch traditionalist who stood up to communism.

The ceremony is expected to draw hundreds of thousands of pilgrims to Rome.

Back to you, Kate.


BOLDUAN: All right. Ben, thank you so much.

Let's go to China now where it was not a bird, a plane nor a superman. It was a daredevil taking a wild ride through a narrow gap in a mountain. Kristie Lu Stout has that story from Hong Kong.


KRISTIE LU STOUT, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: An American daredevil has pulled off a death defying stunt in China. Jeb Corliss flew through the small opening of a mountain range in eastern China wearing a wing suit. Now, Corliss lift out of a helicopter and flew towards the gap the speed of 100 miles an hour. At its narrowest, the gap is only about 11.5 feet wide. The tiniest miscalculation would have meant a disaster. But Corliss who has made a career out of doing this kind of stunts managed to pull it off. He says it's the hardest thing he has ever done. No surprise there.

Kate, back to you.


BOLDUAN: Talk about an adrenaline rush, 11.5 feet wide. (INAUDIBLE) meltdown.

CUOMO: Amazing.

The power of Red Bull.

BOLDUAN: I guess so. Power upgrade.

CUOMO: Should have sent him down to D.C.

Now, if I can make it through this little crack going 100-mile, can you?

Coming up on NEW DAY, there is supposed to be amphibious fun. But look at this -- look at the picture we are showing you this morning. They're called duck boats, riders on a tour in London wound up in the water. Why? Is this just a one-off or is this something we have to be concerned about going forward? It's a story we will take you through.

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: We all love a good halftime show, don't we? Once in a while it doesn't go as planned. Wait, you will see our musical must-see moment after the break.


BOLDUAN: Welcome back to NEW DAY.

We've all seen these duck tours around. The sightseeing trip to start on land and the adventure into the water as boats before -- as boats before getting back on land, of course. But now, another safety incident is bringing the family fun into question. Are the duck boats safe enough? EARLY START anchor, John Berman, is joining us now with more on this.

JOHN BERMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You know, this time the problem was in London and you just saw those terrifying pictures from the River Thames, what had to be so terrifying moments for dozens of people who really just wanted to do some sightseeing.


BERMAN (voice-over): They thought they were out for a nice boat ride, but when the London duck burst into flames, 28 passenger and the crew took an unexpected plunge into the Thames. Some swam for their lives, others clinging to the boat's sides, even as the blaze took hold. Fortunately, rescue crews were on the scene in minutes and no one was seriously hurt. In June, there was another duck boat sinking, this one in Liverpool.

CAPTAIN RICHARD WERNER, SAFE BOATING AMERICA: The commonality between the majority of, you know, these accidents with these duck boats have been mechanical failure.

BERMAN: In 2010, it was a stalled engine that left a Philadelphia duck boat stranded in the Delaware River. Passengers helpless as a 250-foot barge plowed over their boat, dumping some three dozen of them into the murky water.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The boat was tossing and just basically instead of jumping out, the boats kind of rolled over, and we've kind of tumbled out.

BERMAN: Two young tourists would not make it out alive. And in 1999, another tragedy in Hot Springs Arkansas, the sinking of the Miss Majestics.

ELIZABETH HELMERECHT, SURVIVOR, DUCK BOAT INCIDENT: You can see the water started coming in my nose, then I saw some light finally and then I saw a few people kicking their feet and when I got up, there was only a few of them there.

BERMAN: Thirteen people drowned. The culprit, once again, mechanical failure. So, what is the best way to stay safe out on a boat? Safe Boating America's Captain Richard Werner insists research is the key. WERNER: I think it's important before you make a decision on which tour operator to use as far as these duck boats are concerned is to do some research.


BERMAN (on-camera): You know, Captain Werner says the type of research you can do is to check a duck board tourist safety record online, check the accident history, also the maintenance conflates from previous customers. I know it sounds like a lot, but that's what he suggests. Also, this is obvious, if you do get on the boat, make sure you have access to a properly sized life jacket. And even if you're not required to put it on, keep it within reach just in case.

BOLDUAN: That was kind of my question, though, and you make a good point. Everyone always says, do your homework before you go on one of these tours. That's not the easiest thing to do.

BERMAN: No. I mean, I have a hard time thinking you're going to go online and check a maintenance record for a company. It feels like a lot to do, but if these things keep happening, it may be a smart thing to do.

BOLDUAN: Yes. It's a good point. Thanks, John.

CUOMO: Appreciate it.

We're going to take a break here. Remember, all throughout the morning, we want to hear your thoughts, today and everyday, tweet #NEWDAY, and let us know what you're thinking.


CUOMO: All right. There you have it. Micky, what do you think?

PEREIRA: Before we take a break, I want to show you a must-see moment of the day. OK. We've been to halftime shows before.


PEREIRA (voice-over): We've seen the high school marching band. You haven't seen this happen, I don't think. The two bars -- they resemble of game of dominos, one by one, a total of six, and we counted them. Six players stumbled back right on top of each other. And that's what I wanted to point out about this. It is about the recovery. Chris, thank you for noticing that.

We don't know the name of the school, because they posted it anonymously. But the fact that this pile up happened at half type, they just marched on. That's a good metaphor today.

BERMAN (voice-over): -- must go one.


BOLDUAN: And you did say, I think everyone would agree, and you said this, Michaela, earlier, it's actually surprising this doesn't happen more often.

PEREIRA (on-camera): They're walking backwards with sousaphones and tubas.



CUOMO: That's very funny, hold on, though, what's a sousaphone?

PEREIRA: A sousaphone, we don't know if it was tuba or sousaphone. We're not on horn experts. We'll leave it to the viewers at home.

CUOMO: That's the A-game. When you use sousaphone --

BOLDUAN: Appropriately.

CUOMO: Check your maintenance records for people who use a sousaphone.

BERMAN (on-camera): That's right.

CUOMO: Because of something got to know.

BOLDUAN: I need to check my maintenance record.


CUOMO: Coming up on NEW DAY, your e-mails, your phone calls, and now, your social networks. Why is the NSA looking at your Facebook friends? Startling new details about how far the surveillance program goes coming up.

BOLDUAN: And of course, we'll bring you the latest on the threat of the government shutdown. What would it mean for you and your family? And are lawmakers even trying to find common ground as the clock winds down? We're going to have an update for you. But first, here are some Americans reacting to the shutdown that could happen just hours away and here's their message.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Please, you've made your point. Let's get on with the business of running the country and pass the budget, pass the debt limits, and let us keep improving the economy. Don't play games anymore, please.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Words fail me, really, that we got ourselves in this kind of a position where we can't compromise to the point we got to shut the government down.



CUOMO: Enjoy the football games yesterday or just want to know the single fact that you can throw out to impress people today? Here's a tip. Just say Peyton Manning. Wow! Andy Scholes joins us now with more on this morning's "Bleacher Report." Andy, explain why that advice is as sound as the American dollar at least for the next day.

ANDY SCHOLES, BLEACHER REPORT: Yes, Chris. And what can you say about Peyton Manning and the Broncos other than wow? They're unstoppable right now. Manning threw four more touchdowns in yesterday's blowout win over the Eagles. He now has 16 touchdowns, which is the most ever by a quarterback in the first month of the season.

Now, Denver, hooh, put up 52 points in yesterday's win. That's a franchise record. They're 4-0. Up next for them, trip to Dallas to take on the Cowboys.

All right. The Patriots trying to keep pace with the Broncos. They were in Atlanta taking on the Falcons last night. While Tom Brady and company aren't putting up record setting numbers, they continue to find ways to get it done. They held off a late Falcons rally on fourth down under a minute to go. Aqib Talib bats away this Matt Ryan's pass.

Patriots get the win. They improve to 4-0. The Falcons big disappointment, so far. They are 1-3.

And number three in lineup section on today, last day of the regular season in Major League Baseball, everybody is talking about the playoff possibilities, not the Miami Marlins of all teams, but they also told (ph) pitcher, Henderson Alvarez. He threw nine innings of no-hit baseball. The game was still tied at zero in the ninth.

So, Alvarez needed some luck to get us no hitter, and he got it. This wild pitch with the bases loaded scores the winning run for the Marlins. Alvarez gets his first career no-no. It was the third no- hitter of the major league season.

And, 162 games, it was not enough to decide the team's for the post- season. The rays and rangers, they're going to play game 163 tonight. The winner of that game, guys, gets to play any wild card playing game to make the playoffs.

BOLDUAN: All right.

SCHOLES: Very confusing.

BOLDUAN: Very confusing.


BOLDUAN: But that's why we have you. And that's not our strong point. All right, Andy, thank you so much.

You hear the music. You know what it means. It's time for the "Rock Block, a quick round-up of the stories you'll be talking about today. First up, Michaela. PEREIRA: All right. Kate, let's in look in the papers. From the "L.A. Times," SpaceX sending an upgraded and more powerful version of its Falcon 9 rocket into space in California. Somebody helps with some (ph) they carry astronauts to the International Space Station.

"USA Today," a group looking to help the number -- rising number of women armed with a gun. The Well-Armed Women introduces women to target practice and gets classroom instruction on gun safety and self- defense.

Time now for business news and Christine Romans.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Wall Street already making its pronouncement on the impending government shutdown. Knock it off, Washington. U.S. stock futures sharply lower as investors try to figure out what a shutdown would do to confidence that's already starting to fray at the seams.

Apple computer is now the most valuable brand in the world. Apple is replacing Coca-Cola. That's according to Omnicom Group Interbrand. It looked at financial performance and the ability to change consumer behavior and found that, indeed, Apple has the math.

Now, let's get to Indra Petersons for the weather.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Yes. Nothing bad out (ph) there. We're seeing a cold front got a stretching (INAUDIBLE) from the Ohio Valley really all the way down through Texas today. Not expecting much out of it. Maybe a little bit of rain out towards Louisiana. The big way to see this, you can see on water vapor. It's actually totally dissipating as it's making its way to the east.

So, what does that mean between the northeast down to the southeast today? For just, yes, easy enough to say that. We're talking about 80s in D.C., about 83 in Jacksonville. Eighty-three looks like the number for the day. It looks like Atlanta also 83 today. Gorgeous so much everywhere.

BOLDUAN: Eighty-three. All right. Thanks, Indra.

We're now at the top of the hour, which means it's time for the top news.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They tried to blame us. I got a titanium backbone. Let them blame. Let them talk.

CUOMO: D-day. The deadline for a deal to avert a government shutdown now mere hours away. Neither side is budging. What are they thinking? The government could go dark tonight. We're pressing the country's leaders this morning.

BOLDUAN: Government facilities to close, hundreds of thousands of Americans will either not get paid or have their paychecks delayed, including the military. What you need to know? PEREIRA: Plus, new revelations on the NSA domestic spying program. Just what the government knows about you and who you interact with?

And Amanda Knox back on trial right now in Italy.

CUOMO: Your NEW DAY starts right now.

ANNOUNCER: This is NEW DAY with Chris Cuomo, Kate Bolduan, and Michaela Pereira.


CUOMO: Good morning. Welcome to NEW DAY. It's Monday, September 30th, seven o'clock in the east. The only clock worse than the alarm clock is the shutdown clock. Take a look at this. Seventeen hours, less than that, until the government runs out of money. Both sides seem to be saying, forget that constitutional responsibility to pass laws to fund the government. Let's just take a pass on it this time.

Now, if the government does shut down, dozens of federal offices as well as national parks and monuments could close like the Washington monument, the Smithsonian, the Statue of Liberty, all the places you want to visit with your family.