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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Attack on Benghazi Compound; Overhyped Obama Video?; What Body Language Says In Debates; American: Clamp Snafu Caused Loose Seats; McQuery Sues Penn State
Aired October 2, 2012 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Tonight, a story you will not see anywhere else. For the first time, CNN's Arwa Damon talks about what she experienced when she first set foot inside the American compound in Benghazi. What the terrible scene was like after the deadly assault that killed four Americans. Evidence she saw that might have been useful to investigators. That is, had investigators ever had a chance to stand where she stood. Indications perhaps that might help locate the culprits.
"Keeping Them Honest," though, nearly everyone and anyone has now been able to gain access to the crime scene, except, that is, for FBI agents, and now for them, it's no longer worth taking the risk to going to Benghazi. But there is at least some indication tonight that enough is known about who did this to begin planning some kind of response.
A senior American official telling us that the Pentagon and intelligence community have begun preparing so-called target packages, detailed information that can be used to capture or kill some of the terrorists who did this.
Now at the same time, though, the administration continues to come under withering fire, especially, though, not exclusively from Republican lawmakers, over the killings and whether they might have been prevented some way.
Members of the House Oversight Committee today sent a letter to the State Department asking for answers in person from Secretary Clinton, leveling serious allegations including these, the attack, quote, "was clearly never as administration officials once insisted, the result of a popular protest."
And more damningly this, quote, "Multiple U.S. federal government officials have confirmed to the committee that prior to the September 11th attacks, the U.S. mission in Libya made repeated requests for increased security in Benghazi." The letter goes on to detail a series of attacks and incidents in Libya that formed the basis for those calls for more security resources, resources that the letter alleges were denied by officials in Washington.
We're going to have more on that angle shortly. First, though, Arwa Damon joins me. She's back from Libya, she joins me here in New York. It's very good to see you safe and sound. Walk me back. You were at the site three days after the attack. You have some still photographs that have never been seen before. Describe what we see.
ARWA DAMON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, the first in these photographs is basically the exterior of the main building at the compound itself. This is the building where the ambassador resided, and the right-hand portion of the building is where the so-called safe room was supposed to be. As you can see, the burning all occurred inside the building itself.
COOPER: It looks -- it doesn't look very touched on the outside.
DAMON: No. Very much a lot of the damage on this building inside, happening inside. The fire burning. There's one part of the building where there's an entrance way into this so-called safe room, that is pretty much just a heavy metal door. That door was shut when we arrived. That's the interior of the building. That was the ambassador's bedroom. That chair right there next to that chair is where we actually found the ambassador's journal.
The doorway leading into this part of the building was shut, as I was saying, this metal door blocking that off. You can see it right there. So there was pretty much no way to get out, because all of the windows at the point where we were there had metal on the exterior of them, except for the one window where the ambassador's body was carried out. That is how we crawled in.
And eyewitnesses who were there said that they had to physically remove the bars from that building, you see it right there. They had to remove the bars from that window to then get the ambassador's body out.
COOPER: How were you able to get access to the site? Was there any security there?
DAMON: No. There pretty much wasn't. We drove up to the main gate. At the time that we were there, the head of the General National Congress was conducting a tour. We walked in, interviewed him, and then spent over an hour on site filming, walking around, looking at things. We were there, the owner of the compound was there along with some of his relatives. There were some security guards, the gardener and then there were a bunch of Libyans rifling through everything and people were telling us that they had full-on access to it.
COOPER: The Libyans rifling through things?
DAMON: Rifling through things, picking up bits and pieces. They had actually laid a wreath earlier on the outside of one of these things. But there's --
COOPER: So other information, there had been classified information, whatever, could have picked up by Libyans and taken away. DAMON: What we're told is that a lot was in fact taken away. People said that there was a safe that was there that was taken away. But what we also saw while we're there is things that, you know, one would have assumed would have been of interest to investigators had they gone. The toilet in this safe room suite, as we call it, has a very strange -- what seems to be a very strange blood stain on the side of it. You can see it in the -- in the images right there. We don't know what that is. We don't know what happened but it raises a lot of questions as to what could have taken place.
There's another part in this same area where it looks like a handprint is on the wall that has slid down. Again, a lot of unanswered questions.
COOPER: There's a story that a fire was set, that diesel fuel was poured around the exterior of the room or part of the compound. What -- did you see any signs of that?
DAMON: What's clear is that the exterior of the compound, the exterior of the various buildings, were not set on fire. The burning that took place that we saw all happened on the inside.
COOPER: Really? That's interesting. So what does that tell you? I mean do -- can you -- do you see any signs of RPGs, of, you know, holes in roofs or --
DAMON: There is one hole in the main building that looks like it could have been caused by a rocket-propelled grenade. There is the main doorway into the main building was splintered. It looked as if it had possibly been forced open. There was holes from the walls that looked like they could have been shrapnel, but on the exterior of the buildings, there were not a lot of signs of very heavy, intense damage that would have been caused by rocket-propelled grenades by mortar rounds but we did still see even three days on a number of shell casings on the ground.
And again, other bits and pieces that had been very rifled through, a lot of things had been taken, but there were bits and pieces that could have provided clues.
COOPER: And overall the security situation in Benghazi, and in that area, the FBI, you know, has not gone in. There was concern that they would not be able to -- that they would not be able to set up a perimeter, a safe perimeter that they could actually do an investigation, that mortars could be fired in. What is the security situation like right now?
DAMON: It's very much open space. There still is not heavy security, at least there wasn't when we left there around a week ago. There aren't checkpoints leading up to it, for example. It's very open.
Now could they hypothetically -- and the Libyan government has said that they're willing to provide investigators with security using whatever assets they have, whether it's members of the Libyan army, members of the various militias who they deemed to be even more trustworthy.
COOPER: Could a friendly militia group there seal off a large enough area?
DAMON: Well, the February 17th Militia which is the largest one in Benghazi and arguably the most powerful one is the one that eventually did come to the aid of those who were in the consulate while the attack was taking place. They have offered security and it was members of this militia, in fact, who say that they were the ones who warned the Americans three days before the attack took place that there was a heightened threat against them.
COOPER: I want to bring in Fran Townsend.
Fran -- Fran and Arwa both have been breaking news on this story really from the beginning. As you know, Fran was homeland security advisor during the George W. Bush administration, as we often point out. She currently serves on the CIA's External Advisory Committee and she recently traveled to Libya with her employer, MacAndrews & Forbes. And she had actually met with Ambassador Stevens.
What do you make of the pictures you see of what Arwa's talking about?
FRAN TOWNSEND, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY CONTRIBUTOR: You know, as I listen to Arwa, it just reinforces what we said last week and we've said from the beginning. Investigators have to go there, even if you didn't have all the physical evidence there that Arwa has just described to our viewers. You would want to know from the witness interviews, Anderson, you'd want to know measurements, you'd want to be able to take people through it to really understand what the dynamic was.
But then you see things like handprints and blood samples. I mean one of the things -- the first thing you would do, I'll give you an example, and that is you would take the blood sample off the toilet and the bidet and see whether or not it matched first to the ambassador's. Did he fall. I mean there's all sorts of things you'd want to know.
You know, the pictures we've seen publicly of his body doesn't look like he did, but you don't know. And all those sorts of bits of information, it is true, it would be a less valuable crime scene now because people have rifled through it, but there's always some value and what they're telling us now is that they think the risk is too great in terms of the security, but I have never understood. If the February 17th brigade was there, they were friendly, they were willing, and we trusted them, certainly, before the attack, why we wouldn't have taken them along with U.S. military assets and set up the perimeter that the FBI needed.
COOPER: I mean, even -- I mean, a lot of, you know, people will tweet in and say well, if you were able to get to it, how come some American investigators wouldn't be able to? I guess it's a question of how much time American investigators would want to spend to actually do a full, thorough forensic investigation. TOWNSEND: That's part of it, Anderson, but the other piece to this is, right, they represent -- when the American investigators go in, they represent the United States. There's a certain international respect for journalists. It's not that -- it's plenty dangerous for Arwa to be there but they represent --
COOPER: It would be a heightened target, obviously.
TOWNSEND: A U.S. target. That's exactly right.
COOPER: And I guess part of it, too, is if mortar fire was involved in the initial attack or RPG fire, if they were to come under fire, the investigators, they would want to be able to return fire to take out mortar positions, anti-battery positions, and to do that, you would need a significant, you know, capability to return fire.
TOWNSEND: That's exactly right. And everybody we've spoken to suggests that, look, if we had to go in, we didn't want to bring in that big a footprint and it would have been difficult for the Libyan government, although cooperative, to agree to that at such a fragile time in the establishment of this.
COOPER: You've got some new information on the U.S. preparing target packages. What have you --
TOWNSEND: You know, Anderson, it's funny, when I read this, I would have been surprised if they weren't doing that. Remember, after the East African embassy bombings, the Clinton administrations launched T-LAMS into training camps in Afghanistan and Sudan. This is sort of part of the usual process, right? You look at the intelligence and the military will prepare and say what targets do we have, what is our basis for making them a target, that is, capture, kill, target with drones, and what is our likelihood of success.
They'll -- also, there's a secondary process of who would we like to have more on, if we had that information, we could prepare better target packages, and they'll levy requirements on the intelligence agencies to go out and get that information for them. And so it's sort of an ongoing (INAUDIBLE) process between the intelligence community and the military community as they prepare in case the president asks for options.
In the meantime, on parallel tracks, you've got Congress, you've got the State Department investigation.
TOWNSEND: And you've got the FBI.
COOPER: Arwa, just -- I mean, you've spent a lot of time in war zones. Is there something about this that surprised you, about what you saw, about gaining access to this site?
DAMON: It was that it was really such a soft target. You would not expect any establishment, never mind a consulate, to have had such a lack of security to it, especially in a place where there had been attacks against the West. The location itself had been targeted and the U.S. was monitoring not too far away, around a three-hour drive away in the town of Berna, and around it, the activity of known extremist groups who, in some cases, are being led with individuals who are directly affiliated, if not members of al Qaeda in and of itself. I mean it was such a soft target.
TOWNSEND: Arwa and I were talking earlier, and the thing that strikes me about that, Anderson, is every counterterrorism specialist will tell you one of the hallmarks of al Qaeda is they return to failed targets. So the USS Cole that was the success, it had been the Sullivan the year before.
TOWNSEND: The World Trade Center in '93, and then back in 2001. The notion that there were at least two attempts at this consulate and nobody made this a really hard target is really a dereliction of duty. And I think that's some of the outrage you're hearing. There's plenty of partisanship going on in Washington, but there's a certain sense of outrage and I think that's part of why Congressman Issa has whistleblowers. Career people are sort of outraged how could we have let this happen.
COOPER: Well, it continues. Arwa, appreciate all your reporting as always. And I'm glad to have you here.
Fran Townsend, thanks.
Let us know what you think. We're on Facebook. Of course follow me on Twitter, @andersoncooper. Let's tweet about this tonight.
Right now, "Raw Politics." Also, the eve of tomorrow's first presidential debate is going to be fascinating tomorrow night. A story surfaces in the right-wing blogosphere. We're going to play you a portion of a video that's being billed as President Obama's other race speech. It's actually a speech from back in 2007. Now parts of it have already been out there for a long time.
Questions are now being asked about the timing and the legitimacy of this tape being released. We'll play, as I said, a portion of the tape, hear from our panel all sides of the political aisle. And you can decide for yourself. We'll be right back.
COOPER: In "Raw Politics" tonight, the night before tomorrow's big debate in Denver, there's a lot of buzz in the right-wing blogosphere right now about a tape of President Obama. It's not new and arguably may not even be news. It is, however, part of at least one side of the conversation.
Now you may remember President Obama's controversial pastor, now his ex-pastor, the Reverend Jeremiah Wright. Well, tonight "The Drudge Report" is touting the release by the Web site "The Daily Caller" of what "Drudge" calls the, quote, "unscrubbed video of a speech by then Senator Obama." He was speaking back in 2007 to a conference of black clergy at Virginia's Hampton University, a gathering that included Reverend Wright.
Now this is reportedly part of the tape.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: And then I've got to give a special shout-out to my pastor, the guy who puts up with me, counsels me, listens to my wife complain about me. He's a friend and a great leader. Not just in Chicago but also of the country. So please, everybody, give an extraordinary welcome to my pastor, Dr. Jeremiah Wright, Jr. Where's he at? There he is. That's him.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Around the speech, then Senator Obama also warned of a, quote, "quiet riot," building in the African-American community in the wake of Hurricane Katrina and other factors which he said the Bush administration was neglecting. Now as we said, this tape isn't new, only part of it is out there, and the hyping of it may have as much to do with politics and little to do with content. We'll see. More is supposed to be released later tonight.
Joining us now Paul Begala who advises the leading pro-Obama super PAC and chief political analyst Gloria Borger. Also, Professor Boyce Watkins with Syracuse University. He's the founder of yourblackworld.com, and redstate.com editor-in-chief Erick Erickson.
So, Paul, what's your reaction to all this?
PAUL BEGALA, CNN POLITICAL CONTRIBUTOR: You know, a long time ago, a veteran journalist by the name of John King was with the Associated Press and I was complaining about something that they weren't covering. And he pointed out they'd already covered it. He wrote the word news on his notepad, he said -- and covered up the S. He said the first three letters are new.
It's a five-year-old speech, CNN covered it five years ago. Maybe it's shocking. It turns out, and I follow this more closely maybe than the right-wing blogs, our president is African-American and he belonged to Reverend Wright's church in Chicago. And I just don't -- free political advice to the right? It's the economy, stupid. You're running against a president with 8 percent unemployment and 1.3 percent GDP growth. I can't imagine why you would talk about anything else, especially race, which this president I think has done a wonderful job of leading us on.
COOPER: Erick Erickson, why a speech from 2007 being released now, tonight? Is it anything other than politics or why do you think it's significant?
ERICK ERICKSON, REDSTATE.COM EDITOR-IN-CHIEF: Well, I think there's an expression of frustration on the right, among a lot of people who feel like that major members of the media have spent a lot of time vetting Republicans in a way they never did about Barack Obama, including this, and from what I'm being told tonight that there's actually a portion of this that we haven't seen.
I think it feeds into a perception on the right that the media hasn't really vetted Barack Obama as they have Republicans, and that you have the Democratic National Committee tonight already sending out press releases of reporters' reactions being dismissive of this when we don't actually know what's going to be released tonight at 9:00. There's this huge perception on the right that the media has behaved badly in this campaign, whether members of the media agree or not.
It's something more and more polls of independents and conservatives both say they feel like the media has behaved badly.
BEGALA: But --
COOPER: But, Erick, has -- but hasn't -- I mean, President Obama and people have gone to his -- you know, to Hawaii, traced his records, gone to Kenya, talked to his relatives, gone to Indonesia. We've sent people around the world. How has he not been vetted?
ERICKSON: Well, consider this. This year, the "New Yorker's" Ryan Lizza wrote a huge spread on Michele Bachmann and her faith and religion, getting, by the way, a lot of the theology wrong on what she believes. In 2008, John McCain was endorsed by several pastors and it became multi-day stories in the media about John McCain's endorsements but the Jeremiah Wright stuff, you talk to a lot of reporters, they say well, Barack Obama never really went to Jeremiah Wright's church, he just used that to build his political career in Chicago.
So I as a conservative really don't think that the media has portrayed Barack Obama's relationship with Jeremiah Wright as he himself did in 2008 and I still think that's a relevant topic.
COOPER: Bryce -- actually, Bryce Watkins, let me bring you in here because President Obama in -- then candidate Obama in 2008 did make that speech in which he said, I was there when he made controversial remarks and just like a lot of people disagree with their pastors, I disagreed with him on some of the things he said and here's the person I know, and then distanced himself.
What do you make of this tape tonight?
BOYCE WATKINS, PROFESSOR, SYRACUSE UNIVERSITY: I think it's very interesting that anybody would say that we haven't properly vetted President Obama. There are few situations where you are going to be scrutinized more heavily than by being the first African-American president. And we know everything there is to know about President Obama and the idea that they feel that they can bring a five-year-old video out at this point and make a difference in the election, it shows two things.
First, it shows desperation. I think that everybody is sort of in the business of finding secret videos that they hope will damn the other candidate. And I think it also says that they know there's a segment of America that is going to sort of be re-jolted and reenergized by the fact that they are reminding him -- reminding them of this association with Jeremiah Wright.
And that's problematic in itself because Jeremiah Wright is a great man for anybody who studies his history and what he's done for this country, both as a veteran and as a civil rights leader but that's beside the point. The point is that this tape, for the most part, is much ado about nothing. But the Republican sometimes can be pretty good at making something out of nothing. So it will be interesting to see how people react.
COOPER: Gloria, what do you make of it?
GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, I just think that this -- if you are disposed not to like President Obama and you think that Jeremiah Wright ought to be re-litigated, which I don't, that you -- you're going to look at this and go oh, yes, yes, OK, yes, Jeremiah Wright.
That was something that was discussed in the last campaign and for better or -- and let me disagree with Erick here. I believe that people, voters, believe they know what they need to know about President Obama. They may think he's done a great job of handling the economy, getting us out of the ditch. They may think that he's done a terrible job, in which case they will vote against him.
But I think what a tape like this does is just sends people back into their corners and kind of avoids the discussion that we really need to be having, which is who's a candidate who can move the economy forward. So it's kind of a diversion and these are the kinds of things you get at this point in a campaign when people are looking to sort of motivate the base, to get out and vote.
COOPER: Erick, I want you to be able to respond to that. I want to play what then Senator Obama said in 2008 about Jeremiah Wright in the wake of the controversy and the attention.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: As imperfect as he may be, he has been like family to me. He strengthens my faith, officiated my wedding, and baptized my children. Not once in my conversations with him have I heard him talk about any ethic group in derogatory terms, or treat whites with whom he interacted with anything but courtesy and respect. He contains within him the contradictions, the good and the bad, of the community that he has served diligently for so many years.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: So, Erick, did he not go far enough or do you think he did not put the issue to rest there? You think there's more to it?
ERICKSON: Well, Anderson, I think there's more here. I think we don't know what this video is going to have tonight. We're assuming maybe it's something about Jeremiah Wright. We don't know. And I think that this again, from my perspective as a conservative, is the media behaving badly wanting to rush out and beat "The Drudge Report" or "The Daily Caller" to a scoop and dismiss a story we don't even know what's in the story.
Maybe there's nothing. And I agree with Paul, we should be focusing on the economy but we don't know what's there until it's released.
COOPER: Right. The part of the tape that we played is what has been out there before. It's been touted on the "Drudge Report" but they're saying that there's more to it, that they're going to release at 9:00, and we will follow it and bring it to our viewers if -- you know, depending on what it is.
But, Boyce, for you, is this -- I mean is this clearly a -- about race, or is this just, you know, this is the nature of politics at this time in a campaign?
WATKINS: Well, politics can very much be about race. It's both. It's dirty politics, in which you exploit your enemy's weakness and in America, being identified as a little bit too black is a liability, unfortunately.
I think the fact that our country decided to elect the best man for the job says that there's a lot of hope in our -- in our society, but we have to also realize that there's a lot of psychological poison still floating around as it relates to race and there are individuals who are able to exploit that poison to extract vulnerabilities from their competitor.
Right now, President Obama is doing a wonderful job with his campaign and if I were a Republican, without any sort of ethical standing, I probably would try something like this but the fact is I don't think it's going to work for most of the American people. And I also think that people know that President Obama was once affiliated with Jeremiah Wright and I don't think that this is going to go much further than a -- than a 24-hour news cycle.
COOPER: Paul, do you see it being brought up at the debate tomorrow night? Because obviously this is being kind of revealed in a big way on the -- you know, the blogosphere on the eve of the debate.
BEGALA: You know, if I worked for Mitt Romney I would instruct him to bring it up.
COOPER: You would.
BEGALA: Bring it up to knock it down. To disavow it. In other words, Romney -- he had a really wonderful opportunity -- remember when Rush Limbaugh said those hateful things about Sandra Fluke, that Georgetown law student? He had a great opportunity then to smack down the fanatical fringe. And he didn't do it. And it was a missed opportunity.
Doesn't mean that Romney agrees with the crazy things Limbaugh said but he missed an opportunity to assert himself against the fringe and this is an opportunity for Romney, if he's got any sense.
BORGER: Right. BEGALA: And he's a terribly bright guy, he's a very decent guy, but I think he's a bit of a coward where the right-wing is concerned. And I do hope, it would hurt -- would help Romney, it's a sense it's against Mitt's interest, but he should stand up in that debate and raise it himself and disavow attacks from five years ago on the president that seem to me to be driven perhaps by race rather than economics.
COOPER: We'll see if more does come out in the next half hour or so. Again, we'll continue it. Gloria Borger, Paul Begala, Boyce Watkins, Erick Erickson, thank you very much.
Fifty million people are expected to watch tomorrow's presidential debate. What President Obama and Mitt Romney say obviously is going to be crucial, but how they say it may matter just as much, if not more, in some cases.
Ahead, an expert explains how tone and body language can make or break a presidential race. This is fascinating. Stay tuned. It's great.
COOPER: Mitt Romney and President Obama face off in their first debate tomorrow night. A look at their weak points and what each needs to do to win. Two debate experts weigh in coming up in the program.
COOPER: Let's dig deeper now. When President Obama and Mitt Romney take the stage in Denver tomorrow night, how they look, what they do during the debate may speak louder than what they actually say, or as loudly. Research in fact suggests their body language will speak volumes.
Amy Cuddy is an associate professor at Harvard Business School who studies how people perceive others and what shapes the impressions we have of others. She joins me now.
You say, Amy, that when it comes to gestures, ones that convey power and warmth are really important to make an effective politician. You point to former President Bill Clinton as the master of warmth.
I want to show a video of him during a town hall with Ross Perot and then President Bush back in 1992. Kind of walk us through what we're seeing.
AMY CUDDY, ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR, HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL: OK.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
FORMER PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON: You know people who have lost their jobs and lost their homes.
(END VIDEO CLIP) CUDDY: So he's walking toward this woman, toward this voter, away from the people onstage so he's focused on the voter, not on the other candidates. He's gentle. His body language is gentle. He's leaning toward her.
He's even softened his voice. He's nodding. He makes incredible eye contact. He signals to people when he's talking to them you are the only person in the room. You're the most important person. It's that Clinton tractor beam that really melted people.
COOPER: Is that I feel your pain without actually saying it?
CUDDY: That's exactly right.
COOPER: There's a classic moment between Al Gore and George W. Bush from a debate back in 2000. I want to show that, and I want to see what Al Gore does and how George Bush reacts. Let's watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
FORMER PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH: It's not only your philosophy, and what is your position on issues, but can you get things done, and I believe I can.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Explain that.
CUDDY: This looks very over scripted and rehearsed. He's decided that he's going to show dominance and sort of out-alpha Bush by walking into his space. But it just completely backfires.
It doesn't look natural so it makes him look disingenuous, and Bush handles it so incredibly well that it makes it look even worse for Gore. Then you can see how wooden Al Gore's face looks in response to that interaction.
COOPER: Yes. In terms of classic power moves during debate, what are they?
CUDDY: One is who initiates the handshake. They're both sort of vying to be the one who initiates the handshake. But second, during the handshake, look at who is grabbing whose arm.
So Obama often will not only shake the hand, but also grab the arm of the person whose hand he's shaking and that's a real power move.
Another one is to hold the sides of the podium and that allows you to expand and expansive postures are associated with power and strength and dominance.
COOPER: Are there positive or negative body language moves that you're going to be looking for during tomorrow's debate in particular?
CUDDY: Yes. So let's talk about the negatives first, because they're fun. Please, no finger pointing. Finger pointing almost never works.
COOPER: Is that what politicians all do, the thumb on the fist thing, which I have never seen an actual human using this gesture, but all politicians seem to do that.
CUDDY: Well, I think that's a Clinton thing. It looks like he's holding a remote control, but I think open gestures are almost always more effective than any closed gestures.
COOPER: It's also important for a candidate's body language to match what they're saying, right? There's a classic example I think going back to 2007 of John McCain talking about Osama Bin Laden. I want to play that for our viewers.
CUDDY: Another painful one.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SENATOR JOHN MCCAIN: On the subject of Osama Bin Laden, he's responsible for the deaths of thousands of innocent Americans. He is now orchestrating other attacks on the United States of America.
We will do whatever is necessary, we will track him down, we will capture, we will bring him to justice and I will follow him to the gates of hell.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: There was like a smile.
CUDDY: That was really hard to watch. Yes. So that's a sort of nonverbal -- it's a mismatch between what the person is saying and what their non-verbal are saying, or between verbal.
When you're saying something negative that you will follow someone to the gates of hell, you shouldn't be smiling. It creates I think a visceral negative response in viewers.
They don't even know why but it makes them feel bad. It's very aversive to see that kind of thing.
COOPER: There have been reports the Romney team have been preparing zingers for tomorrow night's debate. You say when a candidate has been stung by one, it can be very effective.
The exchange between Ronald Reagan and Walter Mondale demonstrates probably a very, very effective use of this. Let's take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
FORMER PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN: I will not make age an issue of this campaign. I am not going to exploit for political purposes my opponent's youth and inexperience.
(END VIDEO CLIP) COOPER: Did Mondale's reaction help him there?
CUDDY: I don't think it hurt him. I think what you saw was net positive. I think it definitely helped Reagan. I mean, he owned this criticism verbally, and he delivered it so comfortably and so warmly.
I think Mondale's reaction was comfortable and authentic and warm in response. I think the general feeling was positive, but people are -- voters attribute that positive feeling that they had to Reagan, not to Mondale.
COOPER: It's really fascinating stuff. Amy Cuddy, appreciate your expertise. Thank you.
CUDDY: Thanks. Thank you.
COOPER: I find that stuff fascinating. We'll be looking for body language tomorrow night. There's a lot more to follow. Susan Hendricks right now joins us for the "360 Bulletin" -- Susan.
SUSAN HENDRICKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, according to American Airlines, an internal investigation shows an improperly installed clamp is to blame for loose passenger seats on six planes, two of which made emergency landings. Now, the clamp in question is used on 47 Boeing 757s in American's fleet. Most have been inspected. The others will be checked shortly.
Former Penn State Assistant Coach Mike McQuery has filed a whistle blower lawsuit against the university. McQuery was a key witness in the conviction of Jerry Sandusky. He is seeking $4 million from the school for allegedly defaming him and firing him for his cooperation with prosecutors.
Jimmy Hoffa's remains are not buried under a storage shed in suburban Detroit. Results of soil sample tests show no evidence of human remains on that property.
Sheriff's deputies in Pinellas County, Florida are searching for this woman who tried to ride a manatee on Sunday. They say she violated a state law to protect the massive aquatic mammals and could face a misdemeanor fine.
COOPER: You know what, leave them alone. They got enough problems. They get run over by boats. They're sweet and gentle creatures. Don't be grabbing dolphins, either, out in the wild.
HENDRICKS: Good point. Susan, thanks.
President Obama and Mitt Romney obviously have been prepping heavily for their first debate now less than 24 hours away. How high are the stakes? Who has the edge and where each candidate's weak spots? We look at that next in the program.
COOPER: Border patrol agent shot and killed another wounded. What happened in Arizona near the border with Mexico? Details on that ahead on 360.
COOPER: Less than 24 hours from now with the election just five weeks away, President Obama, Mitt Romney are going to face off in their debate. An estimated 50 million people are expected to watch. Both men have been prepping very heavily. They know the stakes.
History has shown that presidential debates can shift a race. Joining me now is Alan Schroeder, professor of the School of Journalism in North Eastern University in Boston, author of "Presidential Debates, 50 Years Of High Risk TV."
Also, Patrick Millsaps is a Republican strategist who served as chief of staff in Newt Gingrich's presidential campaign. So Patrick, you say Newt Gingrich's famous pious baloney line was one of his strongest hits against Mitt Romney during the primary debates.
I want to play that for our viewers who don't remember. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NEWT GINGRICH (R), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Can we drop a little bit of the pious baloney? The fact is you ran in '94 and lost. That's why you -- this idea that suddenly citizenship showed up in your mind, just level with the American people. You've been running for at least since the 1990s.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I'm curious how much of those kind of zingers are pre- thought out and what does Mitt Romney have to do to avoid taking a big hit tomorrow night?
PATRICK MILLSAPS, FORMER CHIEF OF STAFF FOR GINGRICH PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN: Well, that was all Newt and part of the great thing about Newt is that he knew the topic, you knew the weak points, but he was prepared to answer the question and then if you can come up with pious baloney, then that just puts a cherry on top.
Interestingly enough, if you Googled baloney two hours after that debate you would get Oscar Mayer and then Newt Gingrich. I think that Romney has the same opportunity, especially when it comes to Obama's populous message, I'm one of the common guys and you're out of touch.
I think Romney has the same opportunity to say look, you made $2 million in one year. You have spent more money during your time in the White House than the royal family. How are you one of the common man that you say you're part of.
So I think that preparation is important, knowing the material's important, but then being comfortable enough in your own skin and with the topic that you can come up with a pious baloney moment. Those aren't planned. They are not scripted, and it just happens when it happens. COOPER: Professor Schroeder, we have heard the reports that the Romney campaign has been preparing some so-called zingers that Mitt Romney has practiced and can use.
I don't know why they would leak that kind of information because it's like setting you up to fail if it doesn't work out. But how important are little lines like that, do you think, in the history of debates?
ALAN SCHROEDER, JOURNALISM PROFESSOR, NORTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY: I think they can be very important. But I too am suspicious of the fact that they're talking about it so much in advance. I think just the mere fact that they're telegraphing it would indicate that maybe they don't really plan to go through with it.
It's also pretty hard to work a zinger in organically. That is the beauty of a line like pious baloney. It flowed naturally into the conversation there.
COOPER: In terms of -- a lot of people remember Newt Gingrich talking about moon colonies during the primary. Mitt Romney hit back at him on that. Let's take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: I spent 25 years in business. If I had a business executive come to me and say they wanted to spend a few hundred billion dollars to put a colony on the moon, I would say you're fired.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Professor, you think that's an example of Romney at his best during debate, being straightforward and asserting business experience, what he knows.
SCHROEDER: I do. I think that that accomplished a couple of things. It diminished Newt Gingrich, made him look sort of foolish for coming up with that idea, then subliminally reinforced Romney as someone with some business credentials.
He got to refer to himself as a CEO. So that's what you want to do, ideally, is a two-pronged attack. It helps you and hurts the other guy.
COOPER: Patrick, Mitt Romney does kind of struggle sometimes when it comes to attempts at humor or levity. He made a George Costanza reference that felt a little dated, not that there's anything wrong with that, but there was this exchange he had with Rick Perry. I want to play that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROMNEY: Rick, I'll tell you what, 10,000 bucks, $10,000 bet?
RICK PERRY, FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I'm not in the betting business, but --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I mean, that clearly got a lot of pickup. It shows one of the dangers of off-script moments for a candidate like Mitt Romney.
MILLSAPS: Yes, but I think this debate, the structure of this debate, you heard the audience laughing, you heard kind of a give and take. This is one of the silent debates where the audience is not going to be allowed to be participating.
Florida, I think that you were seeing the same scenario that is set up for Romney to give his two best debate performances in Florida, which we just saw there, is exactly where we are now in the campaign, and that is his, you know, he might feel like his back's against the wall.
It's his type of debate. No one debate prep fits all. If you look at the difference of the tonight show, take Johnny Carson liked the audience to be away from him. Jay Leno likes to be amongst the audience and both of them were equally as funny doing the same job.
So I think the type of debate that we're going to see tomorrow night suits Romney's strengths and he has the ability to stay on the offensive and really call out Obama on some of the things just like he did with Newt.
COOPER: Professor Schroeder, it's interesting, when you think about it, President Obama is obviously not without his own weaknesses as a debater. He hasn't actually debated since 2008.
Some have criticized him being kind of long-winded, professorial. There was also this moment didn't go over too well when he was debating Hillary Clinton. Let's take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON: He's very likeable. I agree with that. I don't think I'm that bad.
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: You're likeable enough, Hillary.
CLINTON: Thank you. I appreciate that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: It is a fine line between putting your opponent on notice and not appearing to be mean.
SCHROEDER: Well, yes, and the thing about that clip that's so striking is that she's so self-effacing and good and gets the audience laughing on her side.
Then he comes back, barely makes eye contact with her, is sort of writing something as he makes his line, and it's a contrast between the two of them that I think really hurts him in that clip.
COOPER: Especially in that double box. Professor Schroeder, appreciate you being with us and Patrick Millsaps as well. We'll be watching tomorrow. It's going to be fascinating. As I said, 50 million people expected to watch.
At least 150 people killed in Syria today. We'll tell you what an opposition spokesman is saying about the Syrian foreign minister's call for a dialogue next.
COOPER: Susan Hendricks back with the "360 News and Business Bulletin" -- Susan.
HENDRICKS: Anderson, another deadly day in Syria. An opposition group says at least 150 people have been killed in violence throughout the country today.
An opposition spokesman said no Syrian is willing to sit down with the killers of the Syrian government who have been responsible for every drop of blood that has been shed.
That was in response to Syria's foreign minister calling for a dialogue at the U.N. General Assembly yesterday.
A border patrol agent was shot and killed today in Arizona. The 30-year-old was shot after responding to a sensor that went off near the border. Another agent was wounded. The FBI and local police are investigating the shooting.
New York's attorney general says more lawsuits against big banks are on the way as a task force investigates the crash of 2008. The first suit filed is against JPMorgan Chase over allegations that Bear Stearns, which it owns committed fraud against investors.
The Weather Channel has decided hey, hurricanes get names, why not blizzards. The network announced today it will give names to the worst winter storms to make it easier to follow their progress. It already has a list from A to Z of winter storm names.
COOPER: Interesting. All right, Susan, thanks.
Coming up, who's hungry? A restaurant got in trouble for wheeling in some road kill, road kill. The "Ridiculist" is next.
COOPER: Yes, it's that time of the night. Time for the "Ridiculist." Tonight, we're adding restaurant road kill. Yes, that would be road kill found in a restaurant.
In Williamsburg, Kentucky, a woman was at a Chinese restaurant at lunchtime with the ambiance was somewhat compromised by the sight of a deer carcass being unceremoniously dragged into the kitchen. You know what, I think I will let her give you the specifics. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There was like a tail that was this big. It was a big white fuzzy tail, then like a leg was sticking out of the garbage can.
I had a box on top of it and they were wheeling it in there like really quick like trying to hurry and one of the other employees were like mopping up the blood that was like dripping out of the garbage can on to the floor.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Dear. So the lady called the health department and an inspector says sure enough, when he showed up, there was indeed a dead deer in the kitchen.
He told a local news station that the owner's son admitted to picking it up on the side of the road, on the highway, as a matter of fact. The county sheriff elaborates.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They had it cut up and they were dissecting it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: OK, so they were dissecting it. Maybe the kitchen staff teaches a rogue eighth grade biology class in the back. That's a logical explanation, right?
When people heard about this, the whole road kill and the restaurant thing, they didn't like it one bit. In fact, one might say they were disgusted, very, very disgusted.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Disgusted, very, very disgusted.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was just like, God, you know. I couldn't believe it. I just could not.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Now, the County Health Department has shut the place down. They say the restaurant will have to be thoroughly cleaned before they even think of letting it reopen. Burning question is, if it does open again, will people want to go there now?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: For them to pick up something off the road and who knows how long it's been dead, no.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I would very thoroughly check my food before I ate it if I did.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I'm not sure, but maybe they're overreacting just a bit. Look, it's getting to the point where you can't even wheel one bloody deer carcass into a restaurant in a strip mall in Kentucky in the middle of lunch without people freaking out and calling the health department.
Now, the people who own the restaurant say it was for their own personal use that they weren't going to serve the deer, judge for yourself.
Perhaps my perspective is slightly skewed because I do live in New York City, where we pretty much assume that restaurant food is at least 10 percent made up of rat droppings, 15 percent sometimes, 20 percent max.
Look, at the end of the day, no one wants to see road kill Bambi being carted into the restaurant they're eating at, but in the restaurant's defense, they do offer takeout.
That does it for us. We'll see you again one hour from now at 10:00 p.m. Eastern. Thanks for watching. "PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT" starts now.