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North Korea Readies Missiles; Reaction to Weak Jobs Report; Morning After Pill for All; Obama Apologizes to Attorney General; Rutgers Athletic Director Resigns; American Journey

Aired April 5, 2013 - 14:00   ET


BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: More fallout at Rutgers University today. Just about an hour ago, the athletic director resigned. You know the story. The head basketball coach in this video was fired earlier this week. And now some are asking, who's next?

Plus, 23 years on the run. He wasn't even a suspect. But this man turned himself in for a murder because he says he couldn't live with the guilt.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm prepared to enter a guilty plea right here and now.


BALDWIN: And a TSA worker attacked? Look at this. But a nearby passenger, who also happened to be a police officer, leaped into action. The whole thing caught on video.

Good to be with you on this Friday. I'm Brooke Baldwin.

And we begin with this story at Rutgers University. Officially the other shoe has dropped. First Mike Rice, the abusive, homophobic basketball coach finally fired Wednesday. And now we have learned his boss, the man who allowed Rice to keep coaching for months after he had seen this tape, he is out as well. Is he athletic director -- I should say now former athletic director Tom Pernetti. His has just resigned. His resignation announced just within this past hour at Rutgers.


ROBERT BARCHI, PRESIDENT, RUTGERS UNIVERSITY: I apologize to any student athletes on the team who may have been personally harmed. The kind of chronic and pervasively abusive behavior demonstrated on that video is unacceptable and does not represent the high standards of leadership and accountability we strive for within the Rutgers athletic program.

I also apologize to the LGBTQ community, and all of us who share their values, for the homophobic slurs shown on that video. I personally know how hurtful that language can be.


BALDWIN: That news conference is still underway right now. We have a correspondent inside. As soon as it wraps up, because there are more details here, as this letter was read also from this athletic director, we will bring it to you as soon as possible. So stay tuned for that.

Also happening now, it is one of the most dangerous regimes in the world. And now North Korea says it is on the brink of war. They're now asking Russia to get its embassy personnel out of the country. North Korea telling the U.K. it cannot guarantee the safety of British diplomats if fighting breaks out. These are more worrying signs the North is preparing for a missile launch, and soon.

All of this as U.S. intelligence satellites, scouring North Korea's coastline, have made a troubling discovery today. Another missile. We are talking about Musudan missiles. You see this one here on the back of this truck. These are the missiles. They are smaller. They're easier to move. They're quicker to fire.

Now, this particular kind of missile has a range of about 2,500 miles. And if it's used properly, it has the potential to reach the U.S. controlled territory of Guam. But the immediate danger, of course, is our U.S. allies. You have Japan. You have South Korea in the region. In the event that these missiles are fired, U.S. warships, armed with their own missile destroyers, would have to act very, very quickly.

CNN's Elise Labott joins me with more on this.

And so, Elise, bottom line, North Korea fires a missile, let's say, test or not. And then the U.S. shoots it down. What then?

ELISE LABOTT, CNN FOREIGN AFFAIRS REPORTER: Well, that's the $64,000 question, Brooke. After the U.S. shoots it down, will North Korea take that as an act of war and continue to shoot missiles, not only at the U.S. territory, but the allies. The U.S. has been expecting, Brooke, some type of action from North Korea. Ironically, some type of missile launch. Some type of nuclear test could even be the least -- what they would hope that would be the least that they would do. What the U.S. is really concerned about is some kind of cross border action against South Korea that could escalate. South Korean forces get involved and then there is a lot of fighting.

But the U.S., obviously, wants a determent. That's why it's moving its missile defense system to Guam and sending a very stern message to North Korea, that you are not the superior military power here. You will be overpowered.


BALDWIN: Elise, let me play a little sound. This is from the State Department today from Victoria Nuland. Here's what she said.


VICTORIA NULAND, STATE DEPARTMENT SPOKESMAN: We all know that this is an unpredictable regime and an unpredictable situation. Again, our posture remains to be prudent, to take appropriate measures in the defense and deterrence sphere, both for ours and for our allies, but to continue to urge the DPRK to change course because this is not going to end their isolation.


BALDWIN: Now, we've know, we've seen their reporting that the U.S. is now, despite all of this, dialing back, as well. We know up until this point there's really only been one pathway to relative diplomacy with North Korea, and that is with their longtime ally being China. At this stage, Elise, what would work to cool the situation?

LABOTT: Well, that's what Secretary Kerry is going to be working on next week when he goes to China, Japan, South Korea, to try and find a diplomatic way forward, Brooke. Now, no one's talking about bringing North Korea back to the table anytime soon. But what I'm told is, one of the things he'll be doing is trying to talk to China, South Korea and Japan about some kind of diplomatic path after this large rhetoric, after this escalation dies down. And they do hope and expect that it will.

Ultimately, what could be in the offing for North Korea is some kind of security guarantees that they've been seeking for years. A pathway to a peace treaty. But it all starts with North Korea stopping these threats and agreeing to suspend all testing. That's what the U.S. is hoping that it will do.

But we're not talking about that anytime soon. The U.S. is hoping that by statements such as Secretary Kerry has made, such as the State Department is making, about let's not let this get any hotter. Let's all take a pause. North Korea has a way back to the table. They're hoping that this is giving North Korea a so-called diplomatic off-ramp and hope that it will be visible enough that they can take it.

BALDWIN: OK. Elise Labott for us at the State Department. Elise, thank you.

And, oh, did you see the numbers this morning? Dismal jobs report might be rattling the Dow. Clearly it is. In the red, down 89 points at the moment here. And all of this because of some of the numbers we saw this morning. The U.S. added a merely 88,000 jobs in the month of March. That is the smallest jobs gain we have seen in nine months. And it's about half of what economists were predicting overall. The jobless rate fell to 7.6 percent. But that was because a half million people dropped out of the labor force. Gave up looking for work. And that's all factored in to that unemployment number.

Alison Kosik at the New York Stock Exchange for me.

What is it? What's spooking the companies on the hiring front this past month?

ALISON KOSIK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You know what it is, Brooke, it's about the uncertainty of what's ahead, what's to come. You know, we saw companies rein in their hiring plans last month because they aren't completely sure how those government spending cuts are going to impact the economy when they really get going. So this could really be the beginning of a spring slump for the jobs market and the economy as a whole. In fact, Fed Chief Ben Bernanke, he cautioned that this is a possibility, especially since it often happens anyway at this time of year because you often see those temporary holiday jobs cleared off payrolls.

But the reason we're really worried about this report today is because while, yes, we've been expecting a possible slump, the problem is, it's before the full impact of the government's forced budget cuts have really taken hold. So the worry is at this point, Brooke, that the economy could get worse. You know, what's a job report going to look like when those spending cuts really take effect?


BALDWIN: What about -- I know when these reports come out, they also give sort of the different sectors which are doing the best.

KOSIK: Right.

BALDWIN: But which are also doing the worst. Who's struggling the most?

KOSIK: Oh, retail, definitely. We saw that 15,000 jobs were lost in retail. Some of that's cyclical. But we certainly saw 15,000 jobs lost at clothing stores. Hopefully that will rebound later in the year. But home improvement store, garden supply store, there was a loss of 10,000 jobs there and that's kind of alarming because this is the time of year it's supposed to be their busy season when people go in there and buy everything to, you know, to fix up the house.

Another notable loss that we saw, the post office lost 12,000 jobs. So that contributed to another net loss in the public sector. And again, remember, that's before, before we start to feel the full impact of the forced spending cuts. So, I don't know, maybe the theme of this report should be stagnation. You know, lots of key sectors out there like manufacturing, mining, finance, state and local government. They're not necessarily losing jobs, but the problem is they're not adding jobs either.


BALDWIN: Yes, that is the problem. And we will keep looking as we're just about less than now two hours away from that closing bell here on a pretty tough Friday jobs wise.

Alison, thank you.

KOSIK: Sure.

BALDWIN: As for the president, he is prepping for a big political gamble. He will propose changes to your Social Security, your Medicare in his new budget next week. For Medicare, the president is including the compromise offer he made to House Speaker John Boehner for $400 billion in Medicare savings over the course of a decade. As for Social Security, take a look, he included a Republican idea, a new inflation formula that would reduce some cost of living increases for folks on Social Security. This new budget would create $1.8 trillion in savings in 10 years and it would replace, as Alison was mentioning, those forced budget cuts that took effect in March.

Ahead, a federal judge rules on the morning after pill can now, we're learning, be sold to women and girls of any age without a prescription.

Also, huge bust. One million child porn videos and images connected to one man. We have the latest for you on one of the largest child pornography busts ever.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He ended up being identified as one of the top downloaders and sharers of child pornography in the state of Florida.



BALDWIN: Now to that major ruling making the morning after pill available to anyone. Just a short time ago, a federal judge in New York ordered the FDA to make the pill available over the counter to girls of all ages within one month. Advocates who filed the lawsuit, they've been wanting this for a while now, but the Obama administration has been fighting back. It had required girls younger than the age of 17 to get a prescription for the pill, but it has lost the battle, at least for now. Senior medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen joining me.

Obviously this has huge implications. But first, remind us what the morning after pill does.

ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, the morning after pill has to be taken within three days, preferably within one day, of having unprotected intercourse. And mainly what it does is it keeps the ovary from releasing an egg so that the woman doesn't get pregnant.

BALDWIN: Why was this overturned?

COHEN: The judge said, look, the FDA has been charged with looking at whether a drug is safe and effective. This drug is safe and effective and he said it's just as safe and effective for girls under 17 as for women and girls over 17. You can't make the argument that it's somehow less safe for girls under 17.

Now, the Obama administration had -- they didn't really argue with him really. What they did say was, we're worried that girls under 17 won't be able to read the instructions properly. And he said, look, that's not part of the legal standard. We put aspirin over the counter. We don't worry that some 11-year-old is going to buy it and, you know, get himself sick by taking too much aspirin. That's not part of the standard. If it's safe and effective for girls of any age, it needs to be available to girls of any age over the counter.

BALDWIN: So, again, just to be crystal clear, and I want you to answer the when, as far as when it's implemented, but so a young girl can go to the pharmacy, doesn't -- they don't have to get a prescription, and they can ask for it and within one month they get it? Just like that.

COHEN: No, it's supposed to be put on -- it's supposed to be available over the counter within one month. In other words, this new rule basically is supposed to be enacted within one month.

BALDWIN: Got it.

COHEN: She is supposed to be able to go in there, take it off the shelf, put it on the counter, pay for it, and that's it. She's not supposed to have a prescription. So you can imagine the prescription is a huge road block --


COHEN: Because you're supposed to really take it within the first day. So to go get a prescription within one day of having unprotected intercourse, that's tough to do. I mean that's not easy for any of us.

BALDWIN: So then when is this implemented?

COHEN: It's supposed to be implemented within the next month. But if the Obama administration appeals it or asks for a stay, then that would -- that would --

BALDWIN: Change everything.

COHEN: Change everything. Right. Who knows when it would happen in that case.

BALDWIN: Elizabeth Cohen, thank you very much.

COHEN: Thanks.

BALDWIN: We are going to push forward on this conversation. Next hour, we'll take a look at the legal ramifications of this new ruling from the federal judge in New York.

Want to get you now to a story we'll talk about it a little later in the show. There is an attorney general in California, this is who President Obama went out to go meet, have a dinner last night, try to raise a little money for the Democratic Party.

Her name is Kamala Harris. Let me get this precisely for you because there are all kinds of buzz on line about over what the president said when he was talking to Kamala. Quote this is the president talking.

"She's brilliant and dedicated. She's tough, she also happens to be by far the best looking attorney general." A lot of questions today over that comment. Was it merely an innocuous compliment? Was it misogynistic in nature?

So Jay Carney, White House spokesperson asked about this, moments ago in the White House daily briefing. Here is his response.


JAY CARNEY, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: The president did speak with Attorney General Harris last night after he came back from his trip and he called her to apologize for the distraction created by his comments. And they are old friends and good friends.

And he did not want in any way to diminish the attorney general's professional accomplishments and her capabilities. And I would note that he called her in those same comments brilliant, dedicated and tough. And she is all those things.

She has been a remarkably effective leader as attorney general. She is a key player in the mortgage settlement, which will help many, many middle class families who are struggling to deal with the mortgage situation in this country.

And, you know, he believes and fully recognizes that the challenges women -- he fully recognizes the challenge women continue to face in the workplace and that they should not be judged based on appearance.


BALDWIN: So there you heard it from Jay Carney himself. The president of the United States picked up the phone and apologized to the attorney general of California for those comments he made.

We're going to talk a little bit about that with two people who believe, yes, it was a compliment and harmless, and some say it was absolutely superficial and sexist. So we'll go there next hour.

But coming up, we have to get to the Rutgers story here. We showed you just about an hour ago the athletic director has now resigned. Of course, this is in the wake of the video that's come out, the pushing, the homophobic slurs.

We know that Head Coach Mike Rice, his assistant coach, as well, gone. We have now heard from the president of Rutgers University giving a news conference in New Jersey. We had a correspondent in the room. We're going to hear from her on what he said and what's next for the university coming up.


BALDWIN: Back to Rutgers, as we mentioned a moment ago, the other shoe was dropped. First you had Mike Rice, this abusive basketball coach who was in this video here tossing balls at players, making these homophobic slurs, he was fired Wednesday.

Now his boss, the man who let him continued coaching for months and months after he'd seen the tape, he is out, as well. I'm talking about Athletic Director Tim Pernetti. He has now resigned. His resignation announced within the past hour at Rutgers University.

Pamela brown was listening in on this news conference in which the president of the university spoke. Tell me, Pamela, what precisely was said.

PAMELA BROWN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Brooke, so much unfolding in this story. As you mentioned, we did hear from the president of the university, Dr. Robert Barchi. First thing he said, he came out and he apologized. He apologized to the student-athletes that we saw in that video.

He said that the behavior seen in that video is egregious, chronic pervasive behavior that is not acceptable. And he admitted that he regrets not looking at that video several months ago when it was brought to Tim Pernetti the athletic director's attention.

He told us today at the press conference that essentially Pernetti summed up what was in the video saying that there was verbal abuse and there was physical abuse, as well, but that the president, Dr. Barchi said that he did regret not looking at that video.

But he did say within 5 minutes of looking at it for the first time on Tuesday, he knew he had to fire Rice. So he said that that was his immediate reaction. What's interesting here, too, is that we received Tim Pernetti's resignation letter today, Brooke.

And in that resignation letter, he said his first instinct was to fire Rice, but then there was an independent investigation launched back in December and also members of general counsel here at the university human resources looking at this case.

And the decision was that university policy did not justify Rice's dismissal, which is interesting to note there. And that that is why the university president said that the decision was made then to only suspend Rice and not fire him.

BALDWIN: Right. Suspending him for the three games, fined him, but not firing him. Pamela, let me ask you this because the A.D. Pernetti, you know, he said this week that he first saw the videotape back in November, flash forward to mid-December. He elected to suspend Mike Rice as you mentioned saying, quote/unquote, "he had used inappropriate language."

Hold the thought because that brings us nicely here to Pernitti's boss, the university president who spoke today, Robert Barchi. We heard from him. You saw him there in person. Christine Brennan, she wrote this in "USA Today."

Quote, "If the university president did see the tape, he's as culpable as Pernetti. If he didn't, why didn't he?" So Pamela, I mean, Christine Brennan, widely respected, national sports writer here.

This is just her opinion and Robert Barchi said today. You now know as you mentioned, he didn't see the tape until Tuesday. Nevertheless, you're there. Do you sense there is pressure building in New Jersey against the president of Rutgers?

BROWN: Absolutely. I mean, there has been pressure building ever since this video was released to the public on Tuesday. In fact, there are faculty members here at the university, more than 50. That have sent a letter to the Board of Governors asking for Dr. Barchi to step down.

It's really two fold. The fact that they weren't made aware of the extent of rice's behavior when Barchi found out about it back in December and also the fact that Barchi did not look at the video when he first found out about the content of it several months ago.

So there is definitely mounting pressure. But Dr. Barchi said here today that that decision will be left up to the Board of Governors, that it is not his decision to step down, but it is the Board of Governors. So we could certainly see more play out in this story.

And also, Brooke, want to mention that Dr. Barchi said he not only fired Mike Rice, but also John Wolf, who is part of the general counsel here at the university. He said John Wolf resigned from that leadership position after all of this fallout from the video that we saw this week.

BALDWIN: Yes, several heads rolling here in the wake of this video. Go ahead, Pamela -- go ahead.

BROWN: I just want to say, too, that right here is a copy of the report from the independent investigation, Brooke. So of course, we're going to be sifting through this and seeing what it exactly says and of course, we'll bring this to you later.

And also want to mention, you know, we asked him, Brooke, if you knew about the content of this video, if you knew there was verbal abuse and physical abuse, if a teacher did that, if a Rutgers professor did that in a classroom here, would suspension be satisfactory or is there a double standard here.

And he said, you know what, if he knew -- if a professor threw a basketball at his student's head, absolutely that professor would go. Back to you.

BALDWIN: OK, Pamela Brown for us in New Jersey, on the Rutgers news. Pamela, thank you.

Twenty three years after committing a murder, a man turns himself in. Why did he do it? Why did he wait so long? Was he riddled with guilt?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Something must have got to his conscience.




TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The Korean War was a complicated affair from the start in 1950. A distant battle over whether the Korean peninsula divided by World War II would be reunited under a democratic or communist government. The north's invasion of the south spurred world powers to join the fight and in short order almost 2 million American troops found themselves facing little known enemies in a little known land. Patrick O'Donnell is a combat historian and the author of "Give Me Tomorrow."

PATRICK O'DONNELL, COMBAT HISTORIAN: These men first in 1950, 1951 had to go against 20 to 1 odds in some cases against the Chinese Army. They had to fight the temperature, which dropped to 30 to 40 below zero and they also did it with inferior weapons.

FOREMAN: The conditions during the war were worsened in a sense by the outcome. After three hard years, the war ended essentially where it began with the north, south and not peace just an uneasy agreement to stop fighting. Historian Bruce Cummings from the University of Chicago --

BRUCE CUMMINGS, HISTORIAN, UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO: Korea ended in a stalemate. Americans didn't really understand the war and veterans came home not to a difficult circumstances like the veterans of the Vietnam War, but, rather, to a country that didn't really know where Korea was on the map and wasn't sure what the war had been about.

FOREMAN (on camera): These days a great many Americans don't really know much about the Korean War. It has become the providence of historians and old soldiers.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Captain Benjamin Franklin Pierce. Who are you?

FOREMAN (voice-over): American consciousness of it has been shaped more by the TV show "Mash" than any reality. Only about a third of those who served during the Korean conflict are still alive making it almost certain the forgotten war will stay that way. Tom Foreman, CNN, Washington.