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United States Goes on Offensive in Iraq; Interview With Congressman Dennis Kucinich

Aired November 12, 2003 - 18:00   ET


ANNOUNCER: This is LOU DOBBS TONIGHT for Wednesday, November 12. Here now, Lou Dobbs.
LOU DOBBS, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening.

Tonight: The United States is on the offensive in Iraq. Apache attack helicopters killed two insurgents when they tried to escape from U.S. troops in Western Baghdad. And in the south of the city, an AC-130 Spectre gunship destroyed a warehouse used by terrorists. There is no word on casualties.

The offensive hours after a suicide bomber attacked an Italian military police headquarters in the southern city of Nasiriyah. That attack killed 18 Italians, eight Iraqis.

Senior correspondent Jamie McIntyre has the report -- Jamie.

JAMIE MCINTYRE, CNN MILITARY AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: Well, Lou, it's been obvious that the ground war isn't over in Iraq.

But, in recent days, we're learning that the air war is back, too. Today's strikes in Baghdad are part of a broader campaign by the U.S. military to turn up the heat on anti-coalition insurgents. A U.S. Air Force AC-130 gunship with a powerful side-mounted .105- million Howitzer was used to level a warehouse in southern Baghdad which was said to be used as a base by anti-U.S. insurgents.

It's the latest example of how the U.S. military is using precision airstrikes to ratchet up the pace and intensity of its counterinsurgency campaign.


LT. GEN. RICARDO SANCHEZ, U.S. COMMANDER IN IRAQ: We are taking the fight into the safe havens of the enemy and the heartland of the country, where we continue to face former regime loyalists, criminals and foreign terrorists, who are trying to isolate the coalition from the Iraqi people.


MCINTYRE: Now, Monday night, U.S. F-16s dropped 2,000-pound bombs on another suspected hideout south of Baghdad. And, on Friday and Saturday, up near Tikrit, Saddam Hussein's hometown, similar airstrikes again aimed at taking out structures or houses where it was believed the insurgents were either making bombs, hiding weapons, or meeting to plan attacks.

The U.S. also says that these stepped-up, more aggressive tactics are a result of better intelligence coming from local Iraqis who support the United States.


COLIN POWELL, SECRETARY OF STATE: We are confident that our commanders will get on top of it and that our intelligence experts will be able to penetrate these remnants of the old regime who are trying to destroy the hopes and aspirations of the Iraqi people.


MCINTYRE: And, Lou, there's another aspect of the reintroduction of air power into the campaign. And that's the message it sends.

U.S. commanders are well aware that they're in a battle of perception. And it has appeared that the enemy has had the upper hand. These airstrikes are also an attempt to also demonstrate that the U.S. has more firepower at its disposal and it, too, can strike with impunity -- Lou.

DOBBS: Jamie, thank you very much.

Well, as the military launches an offensive against Iraqi insurgents, the White House is pressing for faster political change in Iraq. President Bush today authorized the U.S. administrator, Paul Bremer, to accelerate the transition to a new Iraqi government. The options include an interim constitution and a new interim leadership.

White House correspondent Dana Bash reports -- Dana.

DANA BASH, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Lou, President Bush decided to send Ambassador Bremer back to Baghdad with some specific options for the Iraqi Governing Council to consider.

After a second day of meetings here at the White House, Ambassador Bremer emerged from a White House Situation Room meeting with the president, the vice president and other national security officials. And when he did, he was intentionally vague about what the options are that he's taking back. Bush officials concede that they don't want to be very specific in their public comments, because they don't want to give the impression that they're making decisions about Iraq's political future here at the White House.

So he was careful to say that he is going to make this a decision by the Iraqi Governing Council. But senior U.S. officials do tell us what some of the options that Paul Bremer is bringing back are. And they include an interim Iraqi constitution, an interim Iraqi leadership. And another option, they say, is perhaps to have a provisional leader, something along the lines of what we see in Afghanistan with Hamid Karzai.

But officials do caution that that is something that might not take hold in Iraq because of the political and ethnic and religious diversity in that country. Now, this, Lou, is a shift in policy for this Bush White House. The president and his top aides, during the fall, during a U.N. debate about the political transition, made clear that first you need to have a discussion about a permanent constitution and then elections. And that is what has to come before anything else.

White House spokesman Scott McClellan acknowledged that they need to be adept.


SCOTT MCCLELLAN, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: Just like you have to adapt and adjust on the security front to meet the enemy, you need to be willing to adjust and adapt to circumstances on the ground, in terms of reconstruction and in terms of the political front.


BASH: Now, this shift is being fueled in large part because of the increasing attacks on the ground against coalition forces and against other coalition targets, and also because of a new CIA report that gives a grim assessment about the way the coalition provisional authority is being perceived, about the Iraqi Governing Council. And they say that this is a big part of the reason they need to push things forward on both fronts -- Lou.

DOBBS: Thank you, Dana.

The Central Include Agency says the insurgency in Iraq is likely to worsen in its attacks, not only in Baghdad, but across the entire country. The CIA station chief in Baghdad says Iraqis are losing confidence in the coalition and they are supporting the insurgents in rising numbers. That report was sent to Washington Monday, a day before President Bush delivered a toughly-worded speech on Iraq. That report was leaked by the Bush administration, not the CIA.

National security correspondent David Ensor joins me now.

David, what are your sources telling you about this report and its impact?

DAVID ENSOR, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Well, this is an interesting example, Lou, of how Washington really works.

As you say, the CIA, U.S. intelligence officials, they are having nothing whatsoever to say about this report. But other parts of the government who believe there needs to be a midcourse correction in the way the U.S. government has been handling things in Iraq are letting it be known to reporters that there is this very grim assessment by the CIA station chief that is being circulated that suggests things will get worse, unless there are real changes in the way the U.S. is doing business in Iraq.

And that favors their side of the argument. It does look as if this calculated and careful leak has worked, too, since, as you note, Dana is reporting that the president considered the options and is sending Paul Bremer back with a series of possibilities, none of which were on the table before -- Lou.

DOBBS: And those actions -- that is, the recall of ball Paul Bremer and the new orders from the White House -- all followed the release, the leak, of that report.

ENSOR: Well, the idea is to give a little ammunition to the argument as there's going to be a high-level meeting in Washington.

Presumably, those in agencies like the State Department, who have been arguing, privately, at least, that there needs to be a change, that probably there should be an Iraqi face on the government, that Paul Bremer should stand back a little, and that there needs to be some serious examination of the whole way the thing is organized, the governing council and so forth, because, if it isn't changed, there may be a lot more dead Americans, those people are using this calculated leak to help win the argument. And it looks as if it worked -- Lou.

DOBBS: David, thank you very much -- David Ensor, our national security correspondent from Washington.

The U.S. administrator in Iraq, Paul Bremer, of course, has a tough mission. He has an even tougher mission now to persuade the Iraqi Governing Council to put its personal, ethnic and religious differences aside to build a new Iraqi government.

My guest tonight, Ambassador Tim Carney, a former senior adviser with the coalition in Iraq, and joins us from Washington.

Good to have you here.


DOBBS: Paul Bremer could not have been pleased to be recalled so abruptly. At this point, as we understand the instructions, do you believe that he will be able to make significant headway?

CARNEY: He must make significant headway. I think the lesson of the many missions to Baghdad over the past five or six months is that time is not on the side of the coalition and that it is vital to get Iraqis deeply and irrevocably involved in their own governance.

DOBBS: Has there been, in your judgment, some sort of intentional or opposite strategy not to involve Iraqis at the most accelerated pace possible?

CARNEY: I think the strategy was intentionally to be cautious, to look for an inclusive -- at first, it was called a political council. Then it became the governing council. It was an effort to try to bring as many Iraqis into a situation, a framework, under coalition control, as possible.

Well, that's not governance. Governance is when they have the say. And that's the direction that we seem to be going. It's the right direction. DOBBS: It's the right direction. The policy that's been followed since major combat operations has been botched in almost every direction. Progress, certainly, but many American lives lost.

Is there some reason now to believe that, with what appears to be a more aggressive posture by the U.S. military and a change in direction on the part of the -- of Paul Bremer, the administrator, that we will see less loss of American life, greater security for Iraq and Iraqis?

CARNEY: I think there are two things that we need to look at here.

One is that our military has to be careful to avoid overreaction, to avoid, in other words, creating more potential enemies, as we dishearten the insurgents. And the second thing -- and I would really like to see some information out of the administration on this -- how is Paul Bremer, how is the coalition communicating the reality of our policies and our vision to Iraqis themselves?

DOBBS: And when you ask that question, what answer are you seeking? What are your suspicions?

CARNEY: I think what -- my suspicion, which is well-founded, since I saw it on the ground from the outset of the mission, was, we had a very anemic effort to create a coalition media that would broadcast or print to Iraqis themselves.

Now, since then, we've heard a lot about change of focus, increased money, a much broader effort. How effective is it? That's what we need to know. It's vital now.

DOBBS: Ambassador Carney, thank you very much for being with us. We appreciate it.

CARNEY: You're welcome. You're welcome.

DOBBS: Coming up next: an all-nighter in the Senate, Republicans bringing in the cots. They're preparing for a 30-hour fight on behalf of judicial nominees blocked by the Democrats. Congressional correspondent Jonathan Karl will have the report.

Judgment day nearing for Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, the judge reporting to a higher authority. Brian Cabell reports from Montgomery, Alabama.

Democratic presidential hopeful Dennis Kucinich will join me to talk about candidacy, the competition, his battle to keep American jobs on American soil -- all of that and more still ahead.

Please stay with us.


DOBBS: Tonight, Senate Republicans are using an unconventional method to publicize the debate surrounding the president's judicial nominees. Republicans have called a marathon overnight session in response to recent Democratic filibusters that have blocked voting on several nominees.

Congressional correspondent Jonathan Karl has the report -- Jonathan.

JONATHAN KARL, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Lou, they're saying it will be a 30-hour marathon session, and warning it may go more than 30 hours.

It has already started, started just a few minutes ago on the floor of the Senate, the debate starting. Republicans began this with a show of support, marching all of the Republican senators from down the Capitol hallways into the Senate, a show of force to say that they are here to protest the way Democrats have been treating the president's judicial nominees.

They've done this. They've brought out the cots. I think we have pictures of cots the Republicans have rolled in, because they're going to go debating all night tonight, all day tomorrow, and continue until early Friday morning. So you may need the occasional senatorial naps. They have brought in the cots in case senators need to take a break. But the bottom line is, they're protesting the way Democrats have treated the circuit court nominees.

One of the most vigorous complaints came today from freshman Republican Lindsey Graham, who had this to say.


SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: There's never a good time to hijack the Constitution for political reasons. But the worst time is when you're at war and you have got nine million people unemployed.


KARL: Now, there are six circuit court nominees that have been either blocked or threatened to be blocked by the Democrats. That's what the Republicans are talking about.

Democrats, however, are saying this is all a big, colossal waste of time. They say that Democrats have confirmed 168 of the president's nominees. It's just a few of the most controversial that they're blocking.

Here is what Tom Daschle had to say a little while ago.


SEN. TOM DASCHLE (D-SD), MINORITY LEADER: Well, we begin tonight what I view to be a colossal waste of time. It is remarkable to me that our Republican friends have put as much organizational effort into this whole show as you will see tonight. I know you have had a chance to look at the cots. I hope you will check to see whether any of them, any are being used tonight. I guess you'll have that opportunity.


KARL: And it will be quite a show. In addition to the debates all night long on the Senate floor, there are press conferences every hour that will be held by the Republicans. Democrats will be here to talk to the press as well -- Lou.

DOBBS: Did they provide, the Senate, cots for correspondents covering this 30-hour marathon, Jonathan?

KARL: We haven't made that request yet, but it's a good idea, Lou.

DOBBS: Well, I hope you get one of those so-called cots. Those look pretty fancy. They're a bit more than cots, aren't they?

KARL: They were pretty thick. I was impressed.

DOBBS: The idea that 60 senators are required to break away these judicial nominees for an up-and-down vote, this is going to go on for some time. Is there any hope at all, even with this marathon session and what follows, that we're going to see a breakthrough of any kind?

KARL: There really, realistically, probably is not. It takes at least 60 votes to make a rule change here. Republicans could try to force something through. But the Senate is the kind of institution that runs basically when the two leaders are cooperating. Any one senator can block action on the Senate floor. It's very unlikely that you're going to see a breakthrough here. Democrats are really dug in on this.

DOBBS: Thank you very much, Jonathan Karl from Capitol Hill.

An update tonight in the controversy over a 2.5-ton monument to the Ten Commandments that was removed from Alabama's state courthouse. Suspended Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, who installed that monument, or at least had it installed, today appeared before an ethics panel that could have him removed.

Brian Cabell is in Montgomery, Alabama, and has the latest for us -- Brian.

BRIAN CABELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Lou, there's been no verdict announced yet. We got word just a little while ago that the judges will announce a verdict here tomorrow morning, 11:00 a.m. Central time.

No TV was allowed in the courtroom today. But we can tell you that the prosecution case was very quick. It was very concise. It lasted only about a half-hour. Then Moore himself took the stand for the defense. And, essentially, he remained defiant until the end. He said he did nothing wrong by refusing to remove the monuments. He was simply acknowledging God.

We thought we had sound with Mr. Moore. Apparently, we do not.

We can tell you, this monument was removed back on August 27, only after the other justices voted to abide by that federal court order. As for the monument now, it remains in this building behind me. It's in a backroom.

And I think now we do have sound from Mr. Moore earlier today.


ROY MOORE, ALABAMA CHIEF JUSTICE: The essence of my argument is that I've done my duty. I've obeyed my conscience. I've fulfilled my oath to the Constitution of Alabama and the Constitution of the United States. That's what I was required to do when I was elected. That's what I've done.


CABELL: Again, that was Chief Justice Moore a little earlier today. He had no announcements after the session today.

The trial is completed. A couple possibilities for him that will be announced tomorrow. Either he could be removed. He could be suspended. He could be reprimanded. Or, Lou, he simply could be exonerated. A lot of people here think that's highly unlikely. But regardless of what happens, a lot of people think he has a future here. If it's not as a chief justice of the Supreme Court, a lot of people think he could run for governor or he could run for U.S. senator, a very popular man in Alabama -- Lou.

DOBBS: And when you say he's popular, Brian Cabell, what does that mean? Do we have significant statewide polls that speak to that issue?

CABELL: Well, certainly, they approve of his cause.

A fairly recent poll indicated, more than three-quarters of Alabamans approved of having a Ten Commandments monument installed here in the courthouse. So they like his cause. Some people think he is a grandstander. But he won the statewide race by some 54 percent a couple of years ago. He is well-known. There are some people who are not too happy with him, think he is an embarrassment to the state. But an awful lot of people like him. And there are many people who think he has a very bright political future here -- Lou.

DOBBS: Brian, thanks -- Brian Cabell reporting from Montgomery, Alabama.

Another note tonight on justice, and it involves, incredibly, common sense in the judicial system. The judge in the courtroom battle over Rosie O'Donnell's failed magazine declared both Rosie O'Donnell and her publisher, Gruner & Jahr, as losers. Manhattan Supreme Court Judge Ira Gammerman said neither O'Donnell nor Gruner & Jahr company deserve the millions of dollars in damages that each sought. In fact, the judge said neither side deserved a penny. Gruner & Jahr sued O'Donnell after she quit the magazine that bore her name last years. She countersued, claiming the publisher took away her editorial control. During the trial, the seven-day trial, the publisher's chief financial officer admitted he managed financial results to keep O'Donnell on board.

O'Donnell, meanwhile, admitted telling a cancer survivor who worked for her that liars get cancer, neither side in this case distinguishing themselves with grace. Judge Gammerman said neither side presented a valid case. And he added, both were only interested in winning what he called bragging rights. Judge Gammerman is, deservedly, the only winner in the case and a judge others should emulate.

Coming up next, "Exporting America" -- tonight, a proposal to expand free trade and why it may cost a lot of Americans their jobs. Lisa Sylvester reports from Washington.

And in tonight's "Face-Off," two different views on this controversial trade proposal. Congressman Adam Smith says more free trade will open markets for American companies in this hemisphere. Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur says it will come at the price of American jobs. They face off next.


DOBBS: This year, the United States signed bilateral trade agreements with both Chile and Singapore. And the United States is now negotiating to eliminate tariffs for virtually every country in the Western Hemisphere. Few of these countries have money and capital to buy American goods. All of them, however, have a number of low- paid workers ready to take away high-paying American jobs.

Lisa Sylvester has the report.


LISA SYLVESTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Paul Mathiason has grown sugar beet since 1974, but his livelihood and the jobs of 12 of his employees could be in jeopardy if the United States signs a new trade agreement establishing a free trade area of the America.

PAUL MATHIASON, SUGAR BEET FARMER: I think it's fair to say that not only my farm, but on all sugar farms in the United States, that we would be put out of production.

SYLVESTER: Think of the new agreement as NAFTA multiplied throughout the hemisphere. Doing the math, you can see why U.S. growers are worried. American sugar sells for 21 cents a pound, Brazilian sugar 9 cents.

But it's not just the agricultural sector nervous about this latest trade agreement. Since NAFTA was signed, the country has lost more than three million manufacturing jobs. The Labor Department estimates, one million of those jobs were lost from NAFTA alone. Before NAFTA, the United States averaged $139 million monthly trade surplus with Mexico. But in March of this year, the United States had a record $3.9 billion trade deficit with Mexico.

Free trade proponents argue, trade spurs economic growth abroad, gives American companies access to new markets, and makes household goods more affordable, and keeping up trade barriers would hurt low- income families.

BRINK LINDSEY, CATO INSTITUTE: So, what protectionism amounts to today is a very regressive tax that hits hardest the people who can least afford it.

SYLVESTER: But the working poor and blue-collar worker are also the first to lose their jobs when factories and plants move overseas.

ALAN TONELSON, U.S. BUSINESS AND INDUSTRIAL COUNCIL: So, in exchange for a shirt that's a few cents cheaper, their job may be at stake. This doesn't seem to be a very good tradeoff to me at all.


SYLVESTER: So, who ultimately benefits from these trade agreements? Multinational corporations have been fighting hard for them. These agreements give them more operations for relocating their companies and access to a cheap labor pool -- Lou.

DOBBS: Lisa, thank you very much -- Lisa Sylvester from Washington.

Tonight, our "Face-Off" is on the Free Trade Area of the Americas. Proponents say that it will open new markets in Latin America and the Caribbean to U.S. farmers and corporations. Critics, however, say those countries can't afford American products and services at any rate. But they do offer more cheap labor to multinational corporations. And the result will be a loss of American jobs.

Congressman Adam Smith of Washington favors the FTAA and joins us tonight from Seattle. Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur of Ohio is opposed to the free trade agreement and joins us from Toledo, Ohio.

Thank you both for being here.

Let me turn to you first, Congressman Smith.

Why does it make sense, given the experience that we have had to this point with NAFTA -- that is, one million jobs lost, as Lisa Sylvester just reported, a trade deficit that is now at $40 billion a year with Mexico -- why should we expand the experiment throughout the hemisphere?

REP. ADAM SMITH (D), WASHINGTON: Well, I think the most important thing to keep in mind about trade agreements and tariffs is, a tariff is a tax. And I know a lot of people have been proposing that we need to get rid of NAFTA; we essentially need to stop trading with countries that have lower labor standards or lower environmental standards than us.

What that amounts to is placing tariffs on all the goods that come in. In your report, you mentioned the impact that has on consumers. That also has an impact on businesses, businesses that buy the materials. They will have to lay off workers if these materials are more expensive. Tariffs are huge tax increases on American consumers and businesses.

And the stat about the jobs lost as a result of NAFTA misses the fact that, during the Clinton administration, we created about 22 million jobs. Since then, we've lost about three million. So that's a net increase of 19 million. You mentioned some of the jobs that were lost. There's also been a lot of jobs created. And I don't just see how it helps American workers to tax them buy placing high tariffs on goods coming in from not just Latin America, but people are talking about Asia and, like I said, just about any country out there.

DOBBS: Congresswoman Kaptur, your thoughts?

REP. MARCY KAPTUR (D), OHIO: My thoughts are that the United States better determine whether it's going to be a nation or just a market.

And if we continue the policies that have been in place, we are going to continue to see our middle-class way of life disappear and the half-a-trillion trade -- half-a-trillion-dollar trade we're facing this year in our country continue to increase. Every $1 billion worth of trade deficit translates into 20,000 lost jobs.

This year alone, with China, we will have over $100 billion worth of deficit. With Mexico, before NAFTA, we had a trade balance. And I think we should seek trade balances with countries. Why should we become the dump market of the world? Trade agreements should reflect labor standards. They should reflect environmental standards. Otherwise, all we're doing is just cashing ourselves out to the lowest-wage, sweatshop environments.

And if you shop anywhere in America today, you can say to yourself is anything of quality made in this country any more? We're seeing the demise of the steel industry, machine tool industry, the textile industry, the lumber industry. Evening agriculture we're seeing more imports rather than exports.

Now, Mr. Smith represents Boeing corporation. I resent very much as an American taxpayer that Boeing accesses parts and so forth in China. It seems to me that if Boeing gets huge government contracts it ought to help buy product here in the United States of America so that our defense industrial base remains strong. We are hollowing out the real muscle, the raw power of this country.

REP. ADAM SMITH, (D) WASHINGTON: Let me respond, if I could. A couple of things. First of all, the idea that you lose 20,000 jobs, I forget the exact statistic that Marcy cited as trade deficits go up you lose 20,000 jobs. Our trade deficit has massively increased in the last 12 years and we have had a net increase millions of jobs. That statistic just isn't accurate. And I also really feel that we do need to change some policies. I certainly agree that we need to work to improve labor and environmental standards. But again, you have to think about not doing trade agreements as placing tariffs on goods coming into the country. It's a tax.

It's a tax, not just on consumers but on businesses. A lot of businesses in my district actually lost jobs as a result of the tariffs and quotas that were placed on steel, because they were dependent on having access to those steel products to create more jobs. Tariffs do not create jobs.

KAPTUR: Tariffs is a side issue. The United States has the lowest tariff rates in the world. But we're looking at our standard of living. And in any sector, you must be smoking something to think that new jobs have been created in this country. We're washing out the manufacturing sector...

SMITH: That's a statistical fact.

KAPTUR: We are creating part-time jobs. Look at the Department of Labor, the fastest growing category of job growth in this country is temporary work. Wal-Mart is the largest employer in America. The Steel industry used to be the largest employer, the Automotive industry. We are replacing good jobs with low-paid jobs with no benefits.

SMITH: That's not true that all the new jobs that have been created are part-time, low-paying jobs. There have been a lot of...

KAPTUR: The majority. Look at the figures.

SMITH: Not even the majority. I've looked at the figures.

DOBBS: Let me say...

KAPTUR: If the jobs were so good how come we have jobless recoveries and two partners in the marriage have to work? If our incomes were really increasing, there wouldn't be so much stress on people's pocketbooks today in the home. It's very, very difficult to earn a living in this country today unless you're in the top 20 percent. They're doing just fine.

DOBBS: Meet me ask you both a question, if I may. You obviously both of you feel strongly about your respective points of view on this issue. Why is it in your judgment that the national candidates for their parties' nomination, for the Democratic party, are not dealing head-on with this issue. One of them is, two would of them -- one certainly is, a second is dealing with it on a different level.

The Bush administration is not taking on this issue straightforwardly. The outsourcing of jobs, the issues that you are all talking about are pivotal to the well being of the working man and woman in this country who is under tremendous pressure.

SMITH: I disagree that... KAPTUR: I guess I would answer that question by saying that campaign finance has become so important in both major political parties that they know where the big dollars are. And that if you speak too strongly in this area, you're not going to be able to even survive as a candidate.

Look at the Congress. Look at the kind of money people have to raise in order to run for office. The average member of the House has to raise $2 million to run for office. The average Senator in my state has to raise anywhere up to $10 million in order to run for office. The president is going to already has $100 million in the bank. Look at what's going on in this country.

SMITH: I have to just quickly have a chance to answer that question.

DOBBS: Quickly please.

SMITH: A lot of people are talking about trade. There a lot of members -- it's dead wrong if you oppose trade you can't get elected. Or even if you have problems with trade. There a lot of members of Congress speak out against it. There's a number of presidential candidates, Howard Den, Dennis Kucinich speaking out against it.

On the other side, Joe Lieberman, John Carey, some others have spoke out in favor. And also, this is not a black or white issue. The FTAA hasn't been put together yet. If they come back with a bad agreement, then certainly we should reject it. But the idea that trade is by definition bad for the U.S., I don't think is true.

DOBBS: I don't think anybody said that. What we're talking about is the impact on American workers. And the way in which our policy-makers, our lawmakers, are treaty ratifiers if you will, are evaluating the impact economically. Congressman Smith, Congressman Kaptur, we thank you both for being here.

Now our poll tonight, the question, "should President Bush maintain tariffs on steel imports despite a threatened European union trade war," yes or no. You can vote on our Web site, We'll have the results later in the broadcast.

Coming up next, Christine Romans will report on a big day in the world of corporate crime fighting. And we'll share some have your thoughts about our special report, "Exporting America," including some views from you on what our representatives in Washington should be doing and are not doing. Please stay with us.


DOBBS: Still ahead here tonight, Democratic presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich will join me to talk about his candidacy, his stand on Iraq and why he says ten years of NAFTA is enough.

On Wall Street today stocks rose for the first day in four and another corporate criminal pleaded guilty. Christine Romans is here with the scorecard. CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN FINANCIAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, the best rally in a couple weeks for stocks, the broadest rally in more than a month. And you had a 17-month highs within sites in the market here.

General Electric CEO says the economy is improving, Lou, and you can see it in his short cycle businesses. Add to that a visible U.S. offensive in Baghdad and stocks took off today.

And action on Wall Street, as well as action in the courtrooms again today. Former Goldman Sachs economist John Youngdahl pleaded guilty to criminal and civil insider charges. He used insider information for an eight-minute edge to make a $4 million profit in the bond market. For those 8 minutes, he faces five to six years in prison.

Sentencing of HealthSouth executives was delayed today. Five former finance executive have pleaded guilty to various fraud and jail time is expected for all of them.

Of course, the government really wants the former HealthSouth chief, Richard Scrushy. He has pleaded not guilty. Many of his former deputies have already admitted guilt. Sentencing in the HealthSouth issue continues tomorrow.

DOBBS: Corporate criminals keep coming to the forefront.

ROMANS: Certainly do.

DOBBS: Taking a look now at some of your thoughts. From Evanston, Illinois tonight, "keep turning up the heat on those mealy- mouthed bureaucrats and politicians who support trade policies that squeeze the middle class and sell this country down the river to make a buck." That from Charlie Waldon.

From State College, Pennsylvania, "I find it ironic that our leaders tell us that free trade is great for American manufacturing. Yet to save our steel industry, tariffs are imposed." That from Joe Machi.

From Ypsilanti, Michigan, "in a sea of bland and generic newscasts that increasingly come across as Republican sponsored news, your show has the courage and strength to be decent, unbiased and honest and on point of the real issues confronting our country today. Keep up the excellent work. You've earned a faithful viewer." Michael Olladwyne we thank you very much.

And from Almegordo, New Mexico, "the Democrats say they want to win, but they won't talk about these subjects that all the Americans want to hear. It's easy, stop immigration, secure out borders, get our industries back on track. We're slowly becoming a third world country thanks to these politicians." That from Suzanne Bertrand.

And from Highwood, Illinois, "My question is when are the politicians are going to acknowledge that in order to create jobs in the U.S., they have to first stop them from going offshore?" That from Rebecca Maresco. From Phoenix, Arizona. "Your program is a rare source of objective insight and news. I am a raging liberal, and I have never identified one of you as one of us. I wonder why. But I have defined you as an absolutely essential source of input for good. I almost said right thinking." Dan Foley, I think we understand each other.

Thank you very much. We love hearing from you. Send us our thoughts at

Coming up next, the trade game with China, and what supposedly free trade is ultimately costing the American worker. It is all about jobs. Bill Tucker reports. We'll be joined by Democratic presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich, next. Stay with us.


DOBBS: The trade deficit with China is expected to be a staggering $130 billion by the end of this year. But the debate about how to control that deficit has become more than a matter of economics. In a highly political move China today announced deals to buy millions of dollars worth of u.s.-made cars and auto parts. Those deals, however, will barely dent the massive trade deficit can China. Bill Tucker is here with the report -- Bill.

BILL TUCKER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Lou, the value of the deals today represent roughly what the United States bought from China this summer. In other words there was a lot of sound and fury that made for good photo and public relation opportunities.


TUCKER (voice-over): In Washington, D.C. Commerce Secretary Don Evans presides over the signing of billions of dollars worth of deals with Boeing and General Electric. In Detroit, China's vice minister of China signs multi-billion dollars of deals with Ford and General Motors. Under which the automakers will ship roughly 5,000 vehicle a piece to China. But here's the problem, the cumulative trade deficit with China in the first nine months of this year alone is greater than $77 billion.

LAEL BRAINARD, BROOKINGS INSTITUTION: This is an absolutely tried and tested pattern the Chinese. What the administration, what Congress and what U.S. businesses need to do is say, hey, this is not enough. Yes, we're happy to get your deals. But there are fundamental problems in our trade with China that need to be fixed.

TUCKER: But would it appear the companies and the politicians are content to take the money and smile. And the deal is worth a lot, but their total value barely exceeds what we're buying routinely from China in any given three-month period. For that reason at least one trade strategist doesn't like the deals, saying the ongoing trade deficit with China costs Americans their jobs and ultimately threatens American business.

If they're taking jobs today, million of jobs you can count on the fact that that $65 million Boeing airplane that will be sold now to China, will in five years be produced by China for $15 million or $10 million and drive Boeing out of business. China will take whole industries over with its unfree labor, and unfair trade practices. If it keeps going the way it's going.


TUCKER: In the end these are the deals that create headlines and look good for the Chinese, plays well for the administration as it heads into an election year. But, Lou, they don't fix the problem.

DOBBS: Not by a long shot, amounting to about 5 percent by my calculation of the total trade deficit with China. No mention, I noticed, at the same time as these deals are being announced by General Motors that China has just stolen, stolen, I repeat stolen, a second model design from General Motors. A great way to do business. Bill Tucker, thank you very much.

The two biggest unions in the AFL-CIO today formally endorsed Howard Dean for president. Those endorsements are a big setback for Dick Gephardt since he was expected to be the candidate for the unions. Bill Schneider has the report.


WILLIAM SCHNEIDER, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST (voice-over): Howard Dean is supposed to be the yuppie candidate, not the guy who appeals to blue collar workers. Dean's issue is the war, labor's issue is jobs. The script for this campaign said that labor already had its candidate, Dick Gephardt.

REP. DICK GEPHARDT (D-MO), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATES: I love this union. I love this union. And I love being with your people all over the country.

SCHNEIDER: Many old line industrial unions have endorsed Gephardt, who's fought the good fight for them for years on the trade issue.

GEPHARDT: Say no to this NAFTA.

SCHNEIDER: Organized labor is actually divided.

HAROLD MEYERSON, EDITOR-AT-LARGE, "THE AMERICAN PROSPECT": There's a real split between some of the old line manufacturing unions that are more impacted by trade issues, and the service sector and public employee unions.

SCHNEIDER: Dean's unions include people who work in offices and hospitals, not factories. They're fast growing unions that see themselves as a movement, just like the Dean campaign.

DEAN: What we're really trying to do here is build a movement to take back this country.

SCHNEIDER: Dean's signature issue, opposition to war in Iraq, resonated with these unions. DEAN: Eighty-seven billion dollars a year for health insurance for every single man, woman and child. If the president can run that on our credit card and send the money to Iraq, he can put a health care right for every single people...


SCHNEIDER: Organized labor is famously pragmatic. Do they believe that dean can beat President Bush? Dean's people say their candidate has a quality that George McGovern and Michael Dukakis and other new politics Democrats didn't have -- toughness. If Bush hits Dean, Dean will hit back -- Lou.

DOBBS: I'm sure there will be a lot of hitting, Bill. But the fact is the unions have abandoned a candidate who stood by them for years as their policies had changed, abandoning Dick Gephardt, why?

SCHNEIDER: It's a big surprise, because they don't think he can win. They don't think he'll win the nominations. That's it. Unions bet on a winner. And they see the Dean juggernaut steaming along, and they say we going to go with the winner.

DOBBS: Bill Schneider, thank you very much.

Coming up next here, we'll talk with Democratic presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich. He's taken a strong stand against American free trade policies and what calls the global race to the bottom. Dennis Kucinich is our guest next. Stay with us.


DOBBS: My next guest wants to legalize gay marriage, repeal the PATRIOT Act and withdraw from the World Trade Organization. All controversial issues he is pushing on the campaign trail as he seeks his party's nomination for president. Congressman Dennis Kucinich from Ohio joins us now from Des Moines, Iowa tonight. You're there, Congressman, to boost your candidacy a bit. How does it look?

REP. DENNIS KUCINICH (D-OH), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, we're organized in 50 states. I have six campaign operations going on in Iowa. It's a grassroots campaign. That's where we put all the money. And we're ready to keep moving ahead.

DOBBS: Howard Dean, two big unions stepping up, putting a lot of power behind his campaign. How do you compete?

KUCINICH: Well, I'm kind of like the Seabiscuit of the 2004 elections. I expect to be closing late and doing well.

DOBBS: You're also calling for a withdrawal from NAFTA, from the World Trade Organization.


DOBBS: Why? KUCINICH: Well, both NAFTA and the WTO have meant a destructive undermining of our economy and of our manufacturing industries and of our hopes for the future. You know, NAFTA has meant a race to the bottom in wages. NAFTA has not allowed workers rights, human rights and environmental quality principles to be protected, and the WTO locks that system in. So I've said, my first act in office as president will be to cancel NAFTA and the WTO and return to bilateral trade conditioned on workers' rights, human rights and environmental quality principles.

DOBBS: The president faces a decision whether or not to withdraw the tariffs that he imposed on steel imports, or face a trade war with Europe, at least to the tune of some $2.2 billion. What would Dennis Kucinich advise the president to do?

KUCINICH: Well, we have to protect our steel industry, but we have to actually -- I mean, what I intend to do as the next president is get out of both NAFTA and the WTO, and then we won't be in a position where we're being asked to choose between saving our steel industry or damaging our agricultural economy.

We have a right and an obligation to protect both. Now, Lester Thoreaux (ph) says there has to be some correspondence between what a company buys from you and what they sell to you. We don't have that here. We're driving a trade deficit close to $500 billion. As you point out, the trade deficit with China is approaching $130 billion. We're giving away our jobs for the future. And I intend to change that as the next president.

DOBBS: One of the other issues is corporate America's outsourcing jobs overseas to India, to China, to the Philippines, to other countries. We also have borders that are wide open. Ten million illegal aliens in this country. What would Dennis Kucinich do about immigration policy?

KUCINICH: There is two different issues here, Lou. One is a trade issue. And I would contend that the outsourcing of jobs is more distinctly related to these trade agreements which permit a facilitation of work to go out of this country.

Now, the issue of immigration, and specifically an issue of workers who come from Mexico. Those workers are entitled to a decent wage. They're entitled to protections of labor law, they are entitled to have their children get health and education benefits. And as the next president, I'm going to make sure their rights are protected.

DOBBS: Amnesty for the 10 million illegal aliens in this country?

KUCINICH: I think there ought to be amnesty, and I also think that there ought to be an opportunity -- well, of course, you know, that is to be subject to review on a case-by-case basis. But I think that we have to make it possible for people who are making a contribution to this economy to be treated with full status, and not simply to be treated as second class citizens exploited for cheap labor. DOBBS: Even if they're depressing wages for working men and women in this country?

KUCINICH: Well, they are not depressing the wages. They're not depressing wages.


DOBBS: Congressman, I am going to have to take your judgment on that, because we're out of time. We're going to let you have the final word on that one.

Dennis Kucinich, we thank you for being with us. Appreciate it.

KUCINICH: Look forward to being with you again, Lou, thanks.

DOBBS: Got a deal. Dennis Kucinich.

Coming up next, a new, innovative and often annoying type of advertising is startling movie-goers all around the country. Jeanne Moos has that story for us next. Stay with us.


DOBBS: The results of our poll tonight. The question, should President Bush maintain tariffs on steel imports despite a threatened European Union trade war? Now, look at this, 50 percent say yes, 50 percent say no. I don't think you've helped the president make his decision tonight. We thank you for your vote.

Finally tonight, advertisers are taking on new aggressive marketing techniques, they are taking these techniques to new and even more in your face levels, as Jeanne Moos now reports.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Suppose you're in a movie theater watching trailers...


MOOS: And mindlessly gobbling popcorn when this happens.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A chill in a group of freak outs.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank goodness for bad boys.

MOOS: Who are those people shouting at the screen?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's crazy people.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That was pretty weird. My first reaction was to freak out.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A white hot meteor against a cloudy sky.

MOOS (voice-over): Shocked silence, then laughter and even applause for the latest in guerrilla marketing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We call it a theater jam.

MOOS (on camera): A theater jam?


MOOS (voice-over): An ad agency called True Agency cooked this one up for its client Nissan. Four actors plant themselves in the audience. Each has one line.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A chill in a group of freak outs.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank goodness for bad boys.

MOOS (on camera): But what's that have to do with a car?

(voice-over): Apparently it's aimed at building the Ultima's image. For this advertising experiment, the agency chose showings of "The Matrix" in seven major markets, figuring "The Matrix" crowd would be receptive.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That was funny.



MOOS: But when you're paying eight or 10 bucks a seat, any commercials can be maddening.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I've been told to sit down.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sit the bleep down.

MOOS: But the ad agency says more people clap after the commercials than when the movie ends. The audience did some interacting of its own.


MOOS: The next time someone does this to you in a theater...

(on camera): Shhh.

(voice-over): Try telling them you're interacting with the screen. Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.


DOBBS: That's our show for tonight. Thanks for being with us. Tomorrow here, "Exporting America." We report on the American companies fighting to keep American jobs in this country. Lawrence Kaplan of "The New Republic" will join me to tell us why he says neoconservatism is far from dead. Please be with us.

For all of us here, good night from New York. "ANDERSON COOPER 360" coming up next.


Congressman Dennis Kucinich>

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