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White House Does Damage Control; Interview with Pete Rose

Aired January 12, 2004 - 20:00   ET


PAULA ZAHN, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening. Thanks so much for joining us tonight. Welcome to a brand new week here. I'm Paul Zahn.
The world, the news, the names, the faces, and where we go from here on Monday, January 12, 2004.


ZAHN (voice-over): "In Focus" tonight: The White House goes on damage control, as the former treasury secretary attacks.

Also, my interview with Pete Rose. I think it went pretty well.

PETE ROSE, FORMER MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL PLAYER: If she had been a guy, I would have knocked her on her ass.

ZAHN: Tough questions and new confessions from Pete Rose.

And new research on what whether your I.Q. makes you a more productive employee. The results may surprise you.


ZAHN: Those stories and more straight ahead, but, first, here's what you need to know right now at the top of the hour.

President Bush met with Mexican President Vicente Fox today, with two leaders agreeing on the issues of immigration and Iraq. Mexico's leader backed Mr. Bush's plan to grant legal status to undocumented workers in the U.S. and congratulated him on the capture of Saddam Hussein. The two men will attend a 34-nation summit taking place in Monterey.

Now on to the story of a shocking charge against the Bush administration from a one-time insider. "In Focus" tonight, a former Cabinet secretary says in a new book that the plans to go to war in Iraq were even in the works before the 9/11 attacks.


PAUL O'NEILL, FORMER TREASURY SECRETARY: From the very beginning, there was a conviction that Saddam Hussein was a bad person and that he needed to go.

I can't imagine that I'm going to be attacked for telling the truth. Why would I be attacked for telling the truth?


ZAHN: Well, with that and new questions into whether O'Neill used classified information in his interview, senior White House correspondent John King joins us now.

Good evening, John.


Now a preliminary inquiry under way at the Treasury Department into just that question you just raised. In watching the "60 Minutes" report last night, Treasury officials say they believe they saw some classified documents that are not supposed to leave government files when a Cabinet secretary leaves government service. So they have asked the inspector general at the department to look into the question -- no one making an allegation just yet -- But to look into the question as to whether Secretary Paul O'Neill improperly or perhaps illegally took classified materials with him when he left the government a little more than a year ago.

Now, White House officials, Paula, say they have nothing to do with this inquiry and were not told about it. And Treasury officials say it was made out of an abundance of caution. Again, they're not accusing the former secretary of anything, but they say they will look into this. On the broader question, of course, Paula, the president was asked about this book in Mexico today. He would not answer the question as to whether he felt betrayed. He did defend his decision to go to war.

Back here at the White House, though, aides do call it, in their view, a backstabbing betrayal -- Paula.

ZAHN: So if this investigation ends up going anywhere, John King, what could potentially happen to former Treasury Secretary O'Neill?

KING: Well, potentially, if the secretary did take classified materials -- when he leaves, he goes through an exit interview, just like any employee of the government. He's supposed to leave any sensitive information behind.

If he said he did not take anything improperly and he did, he could be subjected to some form of an ethics inquiry or possibly charges. But we should be very careful. No one is making that accusation tonight. And, Paula, Democrats are rushing to say, if you go back and read Bob Woodward of "The Washington Post"'s last book, he acknowledges in the beginning of the book that he got access to all kinds of notes from National Security Council meetings, classified documents from very senior administration officials. The Democrats say they see a double standard.

ZAHN: John King, thanks so much for the update. Appreciate it.

We're going to get more reaction now from David Frum, the president's former speechwriter. He co-wrote the well-known axis of evil speech and has a new book out called "An End to Evil: Strategies For Victory in the War on Terror."

We asked him whether O'Neill's description of the president as being -- quote -- "like a blind man in a room full of deaf people" -- end of quote -- is accurate.


DAVID FRUM, FORMER SPEECHWRITER FOR PRESIDENT BUSH: Well, if I tell you that my problem with the president was that he never laughed at any of my jokes, one possible conclusion is that the president had no sense of humor. But there's another possible conclusion, which is that I wasn't very funny.

And I'm sorry that Paul O'Neill feels the president didn't listen to his ideas. And maybe they were excellent ideas and the president should have listened. But it's also possible the president concluded that they weren't so excellent and that the right way to deal with this was a noncommittal, "Mmm-hmm, mmm-hmm, we'll see." That is a time-honored executive branch technique.

ZAHN: All right, but, even in your own book, you describe the president as this: "He is impatient and quick to anger, sometimes glib, even dogmatic, often uncurious, and, as a result, ill-informed."

FRUM: But here's a difference. And notice when you listen. The president sometimes didn't ask every question that you might want him to ask.

But my description of him is a man who is engaged. And he's complaining the president withdrew from him and didn't listen to him and didn't seem to pay attention. Whenever you've got a problem with other people, there are always two candidates to blame. One is yourself and one is somebody else. And you always start with somebody else and only reach yourself by a long process of elimination.

ZAHN: But it was you yourself who described the president as ill-informed. That must have troubled you when you worked for him.

FRUM: I was sometimes -- there are things he sometimes didn't know that you might think that he ought to know.

I'm sure -- and that's a fault. But the kind of sort of general indifference that Paul O'Neill -- disengagement that Paul O'Neill depicts, that is not right. I think where he is really wrong in understanding how the president was thinking about Iraq. Again, I'm not privy to his confidences and his thoughts. But the idea that there are people in the administration who had decided that Saddam Hussein had to go, that wasn't news.

That decision was made by many people in the United States in 1998, when Congress passed a law called the Iraq Liberation Act and President Clinton signed it, saying Saddam Hussein had to go. The plans had been prepared since the middle '90s. But a plan is a very different thing from a decision. Paul O'Neill isn't saying anything untrue, but he's allowing people to draw untrue inferences if he's suggesting that the kind of plan that we saw in 2003 was something that was an agreed decision of the president's early in 2001.

ZAHN: All right, David, you've got to help me with something. I'm listening to you and I'm hearing what you're saying. You find this criticism of the president very personal. Yet, on the other hand, you're a guy that made some money off the president's back. You left the administration. You wrote a book some folks in the administration weren't crazy about.

Secretary O'Neill is not taking a dime from this book. Everybody knows he's a multimillionaire. And if what he's saying, as you just said, is not untrue, then how can you have a problem with him writing this book?

FRUM: I didn't criticize him for writing this book. I criticized him for saying things that, while true, might lead people to draw false conclusions.

Everybody who goes into the White House has the experience of not being treated as the important person they think they are. And that's a comment theme,whether they're as important as Paul O'Neill or whether they're a speechwriter. That's your feeling. If you're going to write about your experience in a way that is interesting to anybody other than your immediate relatives and the people who hate the guy irrationally, you have to get past your own feelings about, gee, why wasn't I treated like the important guy I think I am, and say, this story was never about me. This story was about the president.


ZAHN: My conversation with former White House speechwriter David Frum.

Now let's get some perspective from our political experts, our regular contributor Joe Klein, a senior writer for "TIME" magazine. Joining us from Washington is regular contributor and former Pentagon spokeswoman Victoria Clarke, and University of New Orleans presidential historian Douglas Brinkley, whose latest book is "Tour of Duty: John Kerry and the Vietnam War."

Good to see all of you.


ZAHN: Doug, I want to start with you this evening.

Is this nothing more than sour grapes on Secretary O'Neill's part?

BRINKLEY: Well, I think it's more than that.

Secretary of treasury is not some far-flung African ambassador whining or some very obscure assistant secretary. He was secretary of the treasury and has great insights to how the Bush administration operates. It certainly has to wound the president that O'Neill would come out with these sort of allegations and revelations at this time, particularly because Iraq is so sensitive right now, and that he's a president who doesn't like people going off the reservation.

He doesn't like what he -- a sense of disloyalty. No president does. But this president, like Harry Truman, particularly loathes it. I think O'Neill made the right move by not taking money, by cooperating with a very respected "Wall Street Journal" investigative reporter on this story. And it certainly has to fuel the Democratic flames that have been complaining about the -- that this administration had planned the war all along and the rest of it, meaning going to the U.N. and the long drawn-out vote in the U.S. Senate and what not, was nothing but a charade, that this was an administration hell-bent on war.

ZAHN: Victoria, why the change of heart on O'Neill's part? And, in fact, everybody knew he wasn't crazy about getting whacked by the administration.

But here's what he said just about a month after being fired -- quote -- "I am a supporter of the institution of the presidency and I'm determined not to say any negative things about the president and the Bush administration. They have enough to do without having me as a sharpshooter."

What happened?


I don't know how you can account for a change of heart like that. He's worked in previous administrations. He knows things like this aren't helpful. And it's disappointing. But as Senator Bob Dole said today, every administration has one. There's always somebody who goes out, goes out early, under less-than-favorable circumstances, as was the case here. So maybe it's just a little bit of payback.

ZAHN: There is some buzz around Washington today, Torie, that, in fact, Secretary Rumsfeld had approached Secretary O'Neill when he heard that he was up to writing this book and tried to get him to change his mind. Can you shed some light on that report? Is there any truth to it?

CLARKE: There has been. There has been a story going around today that the White House somehow asked Secretary Rumsfeld to go and try to talk Paul O'Neill out of it. And that is completely untrue.

Rumsfeld and O'Neill know each other. They've known each other for years. They've had conversations, including about this book. And without going into details of those conversations, you can draw a conclusion from Secretary Rumsfeld's often stated distaste for kiss- and-tells. This is not the way he thinks you conduct your affairs.

ZAHN: Joe, let's bring you into the discussion and talk about what kind of mileage you can expect the Democrats to get out of this on a couple of fronts, on the issue of Iraq, and then the overarching issue of the allegation on O'Neill's part that this is a disengaged president who rarely offered an opinion on anything he heard in a meeting. JOE KLEIN, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, first of all, this is sour grapes on Paul O'Neill's part, and second of all, it is a kiss-and- tell. And such works are unseemly while the president is still in office.

Having said that, though, this is a particularly interesting kiss-and-tell, because Paul O'Neill represents ground-zero traditional Republicanism. And what does he take the president to task on? Two issues. We've heard about the war, the precipitous nature of the way the administration went into the war. But almost more importantly, he takes the president to task for tax cuts.

In fact, he says that the president at first didn't understand why there should be another tax cut for the rich. This is what conservatism used to be. And if this book has any real use, it's to show how far the Republican Party and how far this administration has moved from used to be called conservatism.

ZAHN: And go on to the issue of sufficient that he intimates that was said about Cheney and his lack of concern about deficits, Joe.

KLEIN: Right.

I think that what we've seen in this administration is a return to the supply-side-ism of the Reagan administration, which was, admittedly, a way to starve the beast, to make sure that the government couldn't become more activist in the future. And traditional conservatives, people like Bob Dole, have always thought that that was wildly irresponsible.

Now, obviously, the Democratic Party, which has kind of moved into the slot that the conservatives, traditional conservative Republicans, used to play are going to be hugely happy about this, but it just shows you how far the political pendulum has swung.

ZAHN: And a final thought from you, Douglas, on how you think this White House will continue to deal with it? John King saying the Treasury Department, that this investigation was sort of launched on its own, the White House had nothing to do with it, and whether the story has any resonance at all long term.

BRINKLEY: Well, it's yet to be seen. It's certainly now part of this national debate on, was the war in Iraq necessary?

I think the Iraq part is the most interesting. There's a case being built against the president that the White House knew there were no weapons of mass destruction. And a voice like O'Neill joining the Democratic choir of, you know, Deans and Kerrys and Gephardts and the like, criticizing the administration on the war in Iraq is now part of the history books.

The key is going to be the way that the White House deals with this. And what are those documents that Mr. O'Neill has? And were they legitimate ones, top secret ones he was allowed, or were they classified documents that he was not allowed to take and didn't let them know that he had? So I think that will play out. This could be something that's just a topic of the week and it will kind of wrap up by the weekend, or it could be something that has longer legs if it turns out that O'Neill has only started to let out what he knows about certain aspects of what occurred in the Bush White House.

What we do know is, he was in the catbird seat to know an awful lot of things.

ZAHN: And I guess it will be many months before we have the answers some of those questions you just raised.

Douglas Brinkley, thanks so much.


ZAHN: Joe Klein, Torie Clarke.

CLARKE: Thanks, Paula.

ZAHN: One week to go before the Iowa caucus, and a surprise for Howard Dean, as Dick Gephardt is making it a tight race. We're going to look at the great undecided factor.

And my no-holds-barred interview with Pete Rose. Rose talks candidly about his gambling and whether he still is playing the odds.


ZAHN: Do you still have a gambling problem?

ROSE: I don't think so. I don't think so at all.

ZAHN: Do you still bet on baseball?


ZAHN: Also, here's an I.Q. test for you to figure out. We'll give you the answer later on. Find out why getting questions like these right may signal success at work.


ZAHN: One week from tonight, the Iowa caucuses, the official starting line, as America votes for president in 2004. The Democratic candidates will wrap up months, for some, years, of scouring Iowa's diners, factories and farms for support. Polls now show Howard Dean and Dick Gephardt in a virtual dead heat. But seven days of last- minute campaigning and a substantial number of undecided voters make the final outcome a tough call.

Kelly Wallace reports from Iowa.


SEN. JOHN EDWARDS (D-NC), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Great to see you too. KELLY WALLACE, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The homestretch in what is being billed as the tightest Iowa caucus in 16 years. A sign of just how fluid the race is, at least 10 percent of likely caucus voters remain undecided.

(on camera): And another 40 percent, according to a recent poll, say they might change their minds.





UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: John Kerry's not going to raise taxes.



NARRATOR: Standing strong against terrorism.



EDWARDS: Have 12 million innocent children.


WALLACE (voice-over): This despite the barrage of appeals from the candidates. Why do so many remain uncommitted? To find out, we headed to a place where locals talk politics.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Normally, in years past, somebody always jumped out and grabbed me.

BOBBRETTA BREWTON, VOTER: This one doesn't have that. This one doesn't have that.

WALLACE: Bobbretta Brewton, a social services executive, says Howard Dean had her support, but not anymore, especially after this exchange in Sunday's debate.

AL SHARPTON (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: How you can explain not one black or brown working for your administration as governor.

HOWARD DEAN (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Well, actually, I would beg to differ with your statistics.

BREWTON: I took him off my shopping list, because race is important and it needs to be addressed. And I was pleased that Al Sharpton continued until he actually had to admit that he didn't have a diverse key Cabinet.

WALLACE: This is certainly not a scientific sample, but Jodi Brindley, who works in the telecommunications industry, also said she was leaning towards Dean, but that changed after the latest debate.

JODI BRINDLEY, VOTER: I liked him better before I saw him in person. And I don't know why.

WALLACE: Dean's not ready yet, she says, so she's leaning towards John Kerry or John Edwards.

BRINDLEY: We have to have somebody who can beat Bush. You know, that's the goal.

WALLACE: Bob Wessel, a retired political science professor, agrees. For him, it is between Dean and Edwards. He faults some of the others for going negative.

BOB WESSEL, VOTER: I'm more turned off both with Gephardt and Kerry, for the attacks on Dean. I think they should be positive in their own right and say, here's what we're going to do.

WALLACE: So how will they decide? These Iowans who met for the first time exchanged e-mail addresses. Maybe they can help each other make up their minds.

Kelly Wallace, CNN, Des Moines.


ZAHN: The CNN Election Express is also rolling down on the homestretch in Iowa.

"CROSSFIRE"'s Paul Begala, Tucker Carlson join us now. We never let them go inside.

Good evening, gentlemen. Welcome.


ZAHN: Tucker, let's talk about the glimpses of Howard Dean's purported anger that I guess were observed a couple of times over the weekend. Did it get much play?

TUCKER CARLSON, CO-HOST, "CROSSFIRE": Well, it got a huge amount of play. And that's sort of news from nowhere in one sense. Howard Dean's an angry man. We knew that. It doesn't take a long time in his presence to know that. It's part of his appeal.

But I don't think people took it seriously, or it wasn't covered in the way it's been covered in the last couple weeks. And that's simply because he's the front-runner. It looks like all of the sudden like he could be the Democratic nominee. That terrifies a lot of Washington Democrats. I'm sitting next to one of them, I think. And so there's a lot of pressure, I think, to cover the bad part of Howard Dean. And so what looked like charming directness six months ago now seems like terrifying grouchiness.

ZAHN: Is this a flaw of candidate Dean, Paul?

PAUL BEGALA, CO-HOST, "CROSSFIRE": Well, let's just see how he performs now that the heat is on, Paula.

This is why the system works. This is why it's good. You get down to the final days


ZAHN: You didn't answer yes or no, though.

BEGALA: Yes, it's a flaw. It's a problem.


BEGALA: People don't want their president flying off the handle.

One of the things that actually Governor Bush always had going for him as a candidate, now as president is, he has a terrible temper, I know. He has ripped into me in private. But in public, he never let that show. He never got flustered in public. And that's what we want in our candidates and in our presidents. Yes, Dean is going to have to control that temper at a time when he's under the most enormous stress that he's ever been under. And that's a good thing, because if he ever becomes the nominee and then the president, the stress is only going to get higher.

ZAHN: Let's talk, gentlemen, for a moment, about the undecided, the loosely committed and the supporters of minor candidates in Iowa. Why are they more important there than in almost any other state, Tucker?

CARLSON: Well, because -- well, for one thing, because such a relatively number of Iowans actually go to the caucuses.

I must say, at this point, though, virtually every adult in the state of Iowa has taken a sauna with every one of the candidates. Howard Dean has been to all 99 counties. He's basically met everyone in the state. So you do have to wonder about someone who at this very late stage is undecided. But that's really all there is.

That's the only group that is left to fight for. And so they're the people who are being fought for.


ZAHN: So, in your view, Paul, how is this race shaping up tonight? What does it look like from there?

BEGALA: We really don't know, because unique among American states, the Iowa caucuses allow you a second bite at the apple. That is, if you're somebody who's either undecided or if your candidate doesn't make -- that is, get the minimum amount at that caucus -- the caucus is a public meeting.

So you stand up in a gymnasium and all the Kerry supporters go into the basket, and all the Dean supporters go by the trampoline, and the Gephardt supporters go by the water fountain. If your group, say Kucinich or Moseley Braun, one of the lesser candidates, doesn't have the minimum threshold for your precinct, you're a free agent again. And so it really pays to sort of have a perception in Iowa of being a nice guy.

It's why these flashes of temper could really hurt Dean, because then the undecideds and the people who member are for the minor candidates who don't make the minimum may very well go to somebody like a Gephardt, who's sort of a more pleasant Midwestern type of guy, or maybe John Edwards, who was endorsed by "The Des Moines Register" because he's running such a positive campaign. So that's why it matters more here than most places.


ZAHN: Is it true, Tucker? Part of the reason John Edwards got that endorsement was because of this anger factor on Dean's part?

CARLSON: I don't think there's any question that John Edwards' temperament is part of the reason he got it. And also, as I said a minute ago, there are real concerns among Democrats about Howard Dean's temperament.

I would add one thing, to say that it's really the No. 3 spot in next week's caucuses that's being fought over pretty hard. Nobody has ever won his party's nomination who didn't come in at least third in Iowa. So I think it's clear at this point either Dean or Gephardt is going to come in first. The other one is going to come in second. It's the third spot that's being fought over really between Edwards and Kerry.


CARLSON: So that's -- I think it's the most bitter part of the race.

ZAHN: On to the issue, Paul, of Wesley Clark, one of two candidates not campaigning in Iowa. Let's put up on the screen something he said back in October of 2002 about Iraq and al Qaeda: "Certainly, there is a connection between Iraq and al Qaeda."

But after announcing his candidacy, a seemingly different view. Here is what he just last week in New Hampshire -- quote -- "There was no imminent threat from Iraq, nor was Iraq connected with al Qaeda."

Now, the candidate says these remarks are not inconsistent. What do you think, Paul?

BEGALA: Well, they're plainly inconsistent. He's got to have a better explanation than that.

It may well be, like a lot of people, that he could just say, look, I messed up. I believed George W. Bush. And in a Democratic primary, that's an acceptable thing to say, right, because then he can go on and say, well, Bush lied to me like he lied to you. But to say that they're not inconsistent, frankly, it's silly. General Clark knows better.

I don't know. Clearly, the evidence now is that there was no link to al Qaeda. But I don't know that it's a disqualifier for Democrats for him to say, yes, did I believe George Bush and Colin Powell and Dick Cheney back then? Yes. And I made that mistake. I'll learn from it. I'll never believe them again. I think you can get through it, but not by saying those two very inconsistent statements are not inconsistent.

CARLSON: Well, but that's been the pretty lame explanation for a lot of Democratic candidates, like John Kerry, like John Edwards, to explain away their vote for war. And they said, well, I believed the president at the time. Now I know he was lying. I wouldn't do it again.

In fact, there are a lot of Democrats who voted against the war. There were a lot of Democrats who never would have said that there is a connection between al Qaeda and Saddam. The fact is that, in late 2002, Wes Clark was essentially a Republican who was supporting, in public anyway, George W. Bush. He's completely changed his views, not just on that, but on a lot of things.


ZAHN: We are going to have to leave it there, gentlemen.

And I hope they let you go inside to sleep tonight. Paul and Tucker, keep on busing.

CARLSON: Thanks, Paula. Thank you.

ZAHN: Pete Rose is not one for keeping his opinion to himself, as you'll hear during my eye-opening interview with the man who has finally admitted to gambling on baseball.

And the heartbreaking story of an Army Ranger. He survived cancer and an ambush in Somalia and fought to serve in Iraq. It was a decision that cost him his life.


ZAHN: The war in Iraq has claimed nearly 500 American lives. Among the fallen, Aaron Weaver. The Army Ranger was a cancer survivor and a recipient of the Bronze Star. And he didn't have to go to Iraq. He wanted to.

We get the story now from CNN's Susan Candiotti.


SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Aaron Weaver had cheated death so many times. His mother thought Iraq would be no different.

KELLY WEAVER, MOTHER OF FALLEN SOLDIER: I still can't believe it. I can still see his face.

CANDIOTTI: His daughter and young stepson have lost a father, Nancy Weaver a husband.

NANCY WEAVER, WIFE OF FALLEN SOLDIER: I just thought, that can't be him. And it was.

CANDIOTTI: Weaver was one of nine troops killed when a medevac helicopter was shot down Thursday. He'd been headed to Baghdad for a routine checkup for testicular cancer.

Last October, he fought for an OK from doctors to go to Iraq, though his cancer could have earned him a pass to stay behind at Fort Bragg, where he was a helicopter pilot with the 82nd Airborne Division. His sister questioned him about going.

SHANNON FELICETTA, SISTER OF FALLEN SOLDIER: I asked him. I said, are you sure you want to do this? He said, of course I do. This is what I do. This is what I love.

CANDIOTTI: In 1993, Weaver, an Army Ranger, survived an ambush in Mogadishu, Somalia. He won a Bronze Star for extreme courage, earned a mention in the book "Black Hawk Down," even appeared in a documentary.

AARON WEAVER, ARMY RANGER: But I think the big thing, especially coming out Somalia, that you learn from the Ranger creed which made it really important is the fact that we'll never leave a fallen comrade.

CANDIOTTI: Last week, his invisible shield was shattered near Fallujah.

N. WEAVER: I guess that I thought God would spare his life, since he already spared it twice already. Why not one more time?

K. WEAVER: He's proud to be an American and he's proud to serve his country. And he would want me to say that if he was here.

N. WEAVER: All he wanted in life was a daughter and a family. And I'm glad that he got that before he died.

CANDIOTTI: Three of Aaron Weaver's siblings are in the military, including one in Iraq. Now he's back home for his brother's funeral Saturday.

Susan Candiotti, CNN, Miami.


ZAHN: Changing our focus quite a bit, my interview with Pete Rose coming up. He's not one to mince words or opinions. Listen to what he said just after my interview with him.


ROSE: If she had been a guy, I would have knocked her on her ass.



ZAHN: Also, did some lying students play a part in the decision to move the Scott Peterson murder trial? And tomorrow, the air war against terrorists. How the military is getting ready for the threat from the skies.


ZAHN: Welcome back. Here's what you need to know right now at the bottom of the hour. Supporters of embattled singer Michael Jackson are making plans to travel to his arraignment on Friday in what they are calling a caravan of love. Jackson's brother Jermaine and others announced the effort today. Michael Jackson, of course, is accused of molesting a child as his Santa Barbara ranch.

By now, you have no doubt heard Pete Rose's admission, after 14 years of denials, that he did bet on baseball, even on his own team. Rose chronicles it all in his new book, "My Prison Without Bars." Tonight we're going to surprise you with some things you haven't heard before and probably did not know about Pete Rose, the Cincinnati hustler, whose hustle got him into a whole lot of trouble.


ZAHN (voice-over): Pete Rose was born on April 14, the day already living in infamy. The Titanic had sunk, and Lincoln had been shot on that very same day. And so Pete Rose jokes about having a sinister shadow over his life.

But it turned out to be no joke. A brilliant, record-breaking career in baseball would be eclipsed by dark clouds of scandal and shame.

(on camera): What has it been like to live with this lie?

ROSE: It's been rough. I mean, it's been rough. Once I lied back in 1989, that was my biggest mistake. Once I did that, I had to live with that, because I was never given the opportunity to meet or talk to a commissioner.

ZAHN: Does that mean you never would have told the truth if you didn't care about being reinstated into the game of baseball?

ROSE: No, no. I told the commissioner 14 months ago.

ZAHN: Are you sorry about what you did?

ROSE: Sure. I'm the one who had to live with this. But I'm not complaining about that, because I'm the reason it happened. And I know that some people will never forgive me. I understand that. I understand that, because I was wrong. But unfortunately, I can't change what has happened. It's part of history. It's going to be with me the rest of my life.

But my conscience is clean now. So I'm at peace with myself. But you got to earn the second chance. And the way you earn a second chance, I believe, is just being honest and be caring and, you know, be up front.

ZAHN (voice-over): Just being honest is something new for Pete Rose.


ROSE: Well, regardless of what the commissioner said today, I did not bet on baseball.


ZAHN: Because for more than a decade, he lied repeatedly about charges that he gambled on games, including games involving the team that he himself was managing.

Some charges he continues to deny. That he placed bets based on inside information about the players, or that he ever bet against his own team, the Cincinnati Reds.

(on camera): How was it that you could manage a team and then gamble on those teams at the same time?

ROSE: Your obligation as a manager is to go out every night, every night and try to win the game. At all cost. That's what I did. Whether you bet on it or not, your obligation to the fans, to your ball club, to your players, is to do everything you can to win the game.

ZAHN: But four or five nights a week, you did bet on the games. How did you decide which game to bet on?

ROSE: I didn't -- I didn't -- I didn't manage differently because I bet on the game. I managed the game to win the game. And the experts will tell you that you could never tell I was managing in a different way. I was managing the same way every night.

ZAHN: Pete, you had information other betters didn't have. You acknowledge that, right?

Player comes in after an injury, I'm feeling great. It's going to be a great game for me tonight. Wouldn't any of that have any impact on how you would bet that night?

ROSE: Not at all, because baseball's not like that. Just because -- I've had some of my greatest days when I didn't feel good. Just because a guy comes in and says he feels good doesn't mean he's going to pitch a shutout, it doesn't mean he's going to hit a home run. ZAHN: But weren't you reading any kind of signals off your team players?

ROSE: No, I wasn't, and they weren't either. You can interview any player that played for me.

ZAHN: So it's total serendipity what games you bet on?

ROSE: Yes. Just -- I bet on games I wanted to bet on.

ZAHN: But how did you make that decision?

ROSE: Knowing the game. Knowing -- knowing the people participating in the game. That's how.

ZAHN: Nothing more than that?

ROSE: No, not at all.

ZAHN: So you're basically saying it's like taking a dart and just throwing it at a dart board? All right, I'm going with this game?

ROSE: That's what I'm basically saying, yeah.

ZAHN: You say throughout the book that you never took unfair advantage of inside information. What does that mean, "unfair advantage"?

ROSE: I didn't call other managers and say how's this guy or how's that guy. I knew how my team was. I'm on top of my team.

ZAHN: But wasn't it helpful to you as a better to know Tony Perez (ph) was coming back and you had some information on his status or something, that that might change your bet?

ROSE: No, I didn't ask any of my players anything out of line. I didn't do things like that. No one that played for me could ever tell that I was betting on the Reds.

ZAHN: Did you ever make a bet from a club house?


ZAHN: All of them from home?

ROSE: Yeah.

ZAHN: Let's allow you to answer these questions so you can set the record straight.


ZAHN: I'm addicted to gambling.

ROSE: I think there was a period of time when I was in there pretty deep.

ZAHN: But not anymore?


ZAHN: I used information from telephone conversations with other managers to help decide what teams to bet on?

ROSE: No way in the world. That's so far out of line it's unbelievable.

ZAHN: You think someone just made that up?

ROSE: I know they did. Or if they didn't, why don't they contact the managers I made contact with. Very easy.

ZAHN: Bookies came to the dugout and my manager's office to collect during games.

ROSE: No, that's...

ZAHN: Never happened?

ROSE: Never happened. Never happened. Isn't it amazing I didn't hear any of these claims in 1989 or 1990? You hear them now in 2004. Why is that?

ZAHN: You're basically saying people made this up. Why would they do that?

ROSE: I don't know why. I have no idea why.


ZAHN: More ahead with Pete Rose, including his thoughts on his tumultuous life.


ZAHN: If you had the last 40 years to live all over again, what would you change?

ROSE: I'd change two years of my life, '87 and '88. I'd be more selective of people I associated with. That was my problem. That was my mistake.

ZAHN: Would you have lied about not betting on baseball?

ROSE: I don't know about that.


ZAHN: And how brain teasers, riddles, and brain games shape the way you climb the corporate ladder.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) ZAHN: Despite the admissions in his new book, Pete Rose still has many critics speculating on his motives. This is his second autobiography. In his first one, he lied. In the new one, he says he's telling the truth.

You don't have to be a cynic to wonder how many more versions of his life Pete Rose will write.


ZAHN: What do you say to those skeptics out there who say this is only about your ultimate reinstatement in baseball, if that happens, and it has nothing to do with remorse of any kind?

ROSE: It's hard to be remorseful on paper. This over 300-page book is 62 years of my life. When I was a little kid, when I was a minor leaguer, when I was a big leaguer, when I retired. Not everything is a situation where I had to be remorseful. And I thought, in the chapters when I needed to be remorseful, I was remorseful.

ZAHN: What was the most painful part of that?

ROSE: The whole summer during the baseball season I was being investigated, being followed by every type of media type there was. It was tough. I mean, I went through a period of time where I was on camera from the time I left home until I got home. The easiest part of my day during that summer was actually managing the baseball game, because you can't hide if you're a manager of a baseball team and you have a game going on in front of 35,000 people. Everybody knows right where you are.

ZAHN (voice-over): Pete Rose has hardly been the only one to suffer for his sins. His oldest son, Pete Rose Jr., was also a ballplayer and was taunted at games by opponents playing the song "The Gambler" over loudspeakers when Pete Jr. stepped up to the plate.

(on camera): Did that hurt?

ROSE: Yeah, it hurt. People can be real cruel. People can be real cruel. Why would you -- why would you take it out on a 23- or 24-year-old kid out there trying to bust his chops to play baseball for something I did? I wouldn't do that.

ZAHN (voice-over): Rose wants more out of his confessions than to sell books. He wants to be reinstated into baseball, and more than anything he wants a spot, long denied him, in the Baseball Hall of Fame. Will he get either or both? It's no sure thing. It's not what you might call a safe bet.

(on camera): What stands between you and your reinstatement to baseball?

ROSE: Well, obviously, it's getting the commissioner to understand that I realize I made a mistake and I'm very, very sorry I made the mistake. I had some pretty good conversations with Bud Selig. He's a pretty fair guy.

ZAHN: Do you think he'll reinstate you?

ROSE: I'm a very optimistic person. So based on that, yes. But I don't say that in an arrogant or cocky way. I say that based on my conversations with Bud Selig.

ZAHN: So there have been some clear signals sent to you from Bud Selig?

ROSE: Oh, 14 months ago, when I first admitted to Bud Selig and we left the office in Milwaukee, I had real good vibrations from that meeting. I mean, I just -- I had taken this big 900-pound gorilla off my shoulders.

ZAHN: What happens if you're not reinstated? What will that mean to you?

ROSE: Well, I'll be disappointed. But I'm not a whiner, because what happened to me is my own fault. What happened to me is my own fault. So -- but I'm a very optimistic person. I believe, if you earn it, you deserve a second chance.

I won't need a third. I won't need a third.

ZAHN (voice-over): Even if the old charges against Pete Rose are forgiven, new allegations haunt him, including that Rose continues to gamble, though not on baseball, and was allegedly spotted last year high rolling at Las Vegas casinos. For Pete Rose, dark clouds still hover, refusing to go away.

(on camera): Do you still have a gambling problem?

ROSE: I don't think so. I don't think so at all.

ZAHN: You still bet on baseball?

ROSE: I don't bet on anything, except occasionally I'll go to the races because I own a couple of race horses. I do no illegal betting of any kind, and I do no casino betting of any kind.

ZAHN: If you had the last 40 years to live all over again, what would you change?

ROSE: I'd change two years of my life, '87 and '88. I'd be more selective of people I associated with. That was my problem. That was my mistake.

ZAHN: Would you have lied about not betting on baseball?

ROSE: I don't know about that. It's a situation was -- you know, you're in front of people, and it's either life or say no, and I said no. I shouldn't have. I was wrong. There was just a quick reaction, a quick impulse that I decided to do. Knowing that you're just going to be kicked out forever. You take that, and you say no.

ZAHN: So if you replay those two years of your life, you wouldn't have bet on baseball?

ROSE: Correct. Correct. So I'm at peace with myself, OK? It took a long time, but I'm at peace with myself now. And that's important to me. And that's important to my son. That's important to my other son, that's important to my daughter. So I can survive with that. You understand what I'm saying? I can survive with that. And I'll do whatever I have to do to win those millions of fans that I once had, if they got off my boat. And whatever that takes to do, that's what I'll do.


ZAHN: My interview with Pete Rose as he makes his drive to get reinstated into baseball and possibly get into the Hall of Fame.

A stunning revelation in the Scott Peterson case. Did lies help move the trial out of Modesto?

Also, it pays to be smart. How IQ tests may measure more than just a quick mind.


ZAHN: It is a startlingly development in the Scott Peterson case, a judge was using a university survey to help decide whether to move Peterson's trial. But some of the criminology students who answered the survey questions say they actually made up the answers.

David Mattingly explains.


DAVID HARRIS, DEPUTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY: You used students from that particular class to give them credit to do these surveys?

DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A day before it made headlines, prosecutors in the Scott Peterson case strongly questioned the validity of a telephone survey conducted by local college students as part of a class project, showing that county jury pools were more anti-Peterson than previously believed.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The answer was yes, it was not only significant, it was highly significant.

MATTINGLY: The results ultimately played a role in the judge's decision to move the Peterson capital murder trial out of Modesto. But the next morning the local paper, "The Modesto Bee," reported seven of the 65 students admitted they falsified their findings.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The judge looked at me. I listened to my information carefully and said no comment.

MATTINGLY: Prosecutors, however, issued a statement saying they wanted to talk to these unnamed students. The judge can revisit his ruling if he determines that the alleged false information was significant. In the meantime, at the California State University Stanislaus Campus, the students and their professor are under investigation for possible scientific misconduct and academic dishonesty. This school calling this a very serious matter.

David Mattingly, CNN, San Francisco.


ZAHN: So what could this mean for the Peterson case?

Attorney and jury consultant Paul Lisnek joins us from Chicago.

Always good to see you, Paul, welcome.


ZAHN: Well, our pleasure to have you. Can you explain to us tonight what the heck, you have cheating students in the middle of a capital murder case?

LISNEK: Students just don't cheat, do they?

You know, what you have here, to be honest with you, this is the way research is done on college campuses all over. Professors use their graduate students, their undergraduate students to gather data. Ultimately, that information has to be looked at by the professor him or herself, but this is a common practice to do what they did. What isn't common is students who decide to cheat and not exactly do the work that they were supposed to do. But we know why it happened here. They were expected to eat the cost of making calls, and apparently the timing was such their finals were up, and they just didn't have the time to put into this.

ZAHN: So, who do you blame the mess-up on?

LISNEK: Well, the buck's got to stop somewhere. You've got to go to the professor, because certainly, as I look at sort of the way he set it up, he told the students spend your own money on these calls. He told them how much they were responsible for. He as the academician ought to have a sense of what is too much. Plus he ought to have checks and balances to make sure the quality of the research is meeting all standards. He ought to step in and do testing to make sure it's OK. I don't think he needed to call every single person who was on that list to make sure they answered the way they supposedly did.

ZAHN: But given now what we know, should the prosecution push for the judge to change his decision?

LISNEK: Well, that's the art of the game. I mean, they certainly can. The judge can do this either on his own motion or wait for the prosecution to ask. But you have to realize this survey did not stand alone. I mean, the defense and the prosecution did their own research well beyond any of this. So I'm absolutely convinced that the defense had this kind of material, maybe not as strong, but backing it up anyway. In addition...

ZAHN: All right. Go on. Go on, Paul.

LISNEK: Well, I was going to say in addition I don't think the reason this case got moved is solely because of the results of this kind of survey in terms of publicity and pretrial publicity. This is about the people who stood in vigils. This is about the people who wrote letters. This is about the people who cared and lived this every day. That's why the judge moved this trial.

ZAHN: Yes. I hear what you're saying, and all that may be true, but the judge has got to feel like he got duped a little by the survey no?

LISNEK: Absolutely has to be ticked. But the problem is this wasn't sort of ordered by the court, that kind of thing. I don't think, you know, as was in the report, these people may be facing academic charges, and the students may be expelled or put on probation. The professor's got problems. It raises real questions on the research that comes out of this university and other cases they may have worked in as well.

ZAHN: Well, we're going to be following it from here. Paul Lisnek, thank you for your perspective this evening.

LISNEK: My pleasure, Paula. Thank you.

ZAHN: And testing your smarts, take a shot at this question. Getting it right may mean a bigger paycheck. All the answers coming up.


ZAHN: All right. Here's the answer to our own little IQ test.

Raisin is to grape as prune is to plum. You knew that. I bet you knew. Let's have some fun now with that new study in "American Psychological Association Journal." It says questions like that can predict success like in the real world as well as they do success in the classroom.

Andy Borowitz joins me. He's got the smarts for satire. And his newest book is called, "Governor Arnold." A photo diary of his first 100 days in office. Can't take my eyes off that cover.

Andy Borowitz, welcome.


ZAHN: In the interest of full disclosure, we should say you're a Harvardian.

BOROWITZ: Yes, I went to Harvard. Although, I'm still sort of stuck on that whole raisin/grape thing.

ZAHN: Yes, I am too. I have problems with that as well.

So, let's talk whether you think the study got it right. You can have people that are absolutely off the chart smart, they don't succeed in business. And folks who are considered, you know, wildly smart who do quite well in business.

BOROWTIZ: I think there's no correlation between IQ and success in the business world. There's so many examples around us right now. I mean, Paul O'Neill is a great example. Really smart guy, but he thinks he's smarter than everybody else in the cabinet room, and so he alienates them all, gets fired and just blabs on "60 Minutes," and gets them all mad again. So, that I don't define that as success. A smart guy, unsuccessful.

Look at the other side of the coin, Jessica Simpson, who no one would say is, you know, headed to a job at the jet propulsion labs anytime soon, can't pronounce platipus correctly, doesn't know that tuna is chicken of the sea. But she has a deal to do a new sitcom on ABC and she is on the cover of "Entertainment Weekly Magazine."

So again who would you rather have working at your company, Jessica Simpson or Paul O'Neill?

I would go with Jessica.

ZAHN: I bet you would. And I bet you it has to do with some other attributes.

BOROWITZ: Other reason too. That's true. It's not a controlled -- it's not a controlled sample.

ZAHN: Let's talk about bosses. Wouldn't you think they would just want a nice good employee that, you know, follows the rules and works well?

BOROWITZ: Well, I think you want an employee whose smart enough so that he understands his job but not so smart that he questions his job. I think you want your employee in that sweet spot. Just smart enough, but not too smart.

ZAHN: So the smartest guy in the room thing is not the way you'd go.

BOROWITZ: Absolutely not. Paul O'Neill, smartest guy in the room and no longer in the room, I might add.

ZAHN: How about you, a good test taker?

BOROWITZ: I was a good test taker. I once had that whole raise/grape analogy down. It's just been too long. I am by all standard measures a smart guy, and yet my children still refer to me as that idiot. So it just shows...

ZAHN: That's probably a pretty common thing all of us parents hear from time to time. So, the bottom line about this survey. So our kids who we're trying to encourage kids to study...

(CROSSTALK) BOROWITZ: Well, we should encourage them to study. I think the bottom line of this survey was that it was written by, of course, experts at the University of Minnesota, Illinois. People who did well on IQ tests, so, of course, they say people who do well on IQ tests are cool.

What else?

ZAHN: Bingo.


ZAHN: No surprise there.

BOROWITZ: No surprise there.

ZAHN: Andy Borowitz, thank you for stopping by tonight.

BOROWITZ: Thanks, Paula.

ZAHN: And I'll tell your kids to keep on studying.

Thank you for being with us tonight. Tomorrow night we are going to take you inside the world -- U.S. pilots training for the worst to shoot airliners hijacked by terrorist. Thanks for joining us tonight, "LARRY KING LIVE IS NEXT."


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