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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Stock Market Sets Record; McCain's Last Chance?
Aired October 13, 2008 - 22:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: We begin tonight with breaking news, new details on the European crisis, how Britain, Europe, and the U.S. plan to fix the mess, a new dollar figure, the announcement set for tomorrow. We have got early details tonight, new signs, as well, that investors like what they are seeing, Asian markets rallying as we speak -- that's the breaking news -- after a record day on Wall Street, the Dow industrials up 936 points, the sharpest point jump in market history, investors regaining $1.2 trillion on paper in a single trading day.
Now, on the campaign trail, both candidates speaking out on the economy and how they would fix it.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R-AZ), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: The catalyst of this crisis was the collapse of the housing in America. And I want homeowners to be able to negotiate a new mortgage at the new value of their home, so they can stay in their homes.
SEN. BARACK OBAMA (D-IL), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: I have already proposed a middle-class tax cut for 95 percent of workers and their families. But, today, I'm calling on Congress to pass a plan, so that the IRS will mail out the first round of those tax cuts as soon as possible.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Senator Obama also proposing a new tax credit for small businesses that create jobs, a three-month halt in home foreclosures, and a chance for people to take up to $10,000 from their 401(k) and IRA accounts without taxes or penalties.
Today, there were no specifics yet from the McCain camp. They are expected to unveil a new economic plan tomorrow. We will have more on the politics shortly, but, first, the money and the breaking news and Ali Velshi.
Ali, a lot of Americans, no doubt lawmakers, must be revealed (sic) with this comeback on Wall Street.
ALI VELSHI, CNN SENIOR BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Yes.
And, look, it's not a trend. It's just a day. But let me tell you a little bit about how this day started off. On Friday night, we had a loss of 198 points, but a lot of people thought that was really almost a gain. Part of the loss there was because the price of oil had gone down, and Exxon and Chevron brought the market down.
So, take a look at how today went. It was up more than 500 points for most of the day, then 600 points. Then, in that last hour, something technical happened. It's called a short squeeze. It's people who are betting against the market realizing that those stocks weren't going to go down. You have to buy stocks to make up for it. So, that's what that happened.
We have never numbers like this, 936 points higher by the end of the day. Until today, the biggest number that we had ever seen wasn't even a 500-point gain. Now, there were a lot of things that happened.
In Europe, the banks decided that -- the governments decided they were going to back up the banks. The U.S. sort of gave off hints that it was going to start spending this $700 billion soon and maybe emulate the British model of guaranteeing bank loans.
So, that was another big deal. A lot of these things led to this kind of market charge that we had today. But we're not even halfway made up for what we lost over the last couple of weeks -- Anderson.
COOPER: Ali, we are learning more details about what the government is going to announce tomorrow. What are we -- what are you hearing?
VELSHI: There are four basic things that we're hearing about. Let me show you what they are.
The first one is that the government seems to be targeting nine specific banks that they're going to make direct investments in. They are going to invest in those banks, and they're going to get stocks back in return.
The second thing is, the Treasury has been authorized to spend the first $250 billion of this $700 billion bailout. Well, the president going to give them authority to spend another $100 billion, so that they can accelerate the pace at which they're buying up these troubled assets and investing in the banks.
The third thing is, we're going to get the rules on CEO compensation. As you know, that bailout package had some provisions that, if your company gets help from the government, from taxpayers, well, your CEOs are not going to be able to walk away with golden parachutes or get too much money. We're going to get details on that tomorrow morning.
And, finally, the FDIC, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, which insures your bank accounts now up to $240,000 -- $250,000 apiece, is apparently going to start insuring non-interest- bearing accounts, the kind of which people's payrolls are -- are paid. So, that's a pretty important thing. For all those people who are worried that this credit crisis could affect their payroll, Anderson, we're hearing news that that could change, too.
COOPER: All right, Ali Velshi, thanks.
Again, the Dow up a record 936 points. That's up 11 percent just today. The question is, what comes next? What happens tomorrow?
Some perspective on where things may be headed and what it means to your bottom line from "Fortune" magazine managing editor Andy Serwer.
Tomorrow, you said it's going to be an interesting day. What do you mean?
ANDY SERWER, MANAGING EDITOR, "FORTUNE": You know when the flight attendants say, keep your seat belt securely fastened? I mean, there's no question, Anderson, that tomorrow is going to be another one of those days.
There's a couple things that happened. First of all, today was a bank holiday. So, the credit markets were not open. So, we will get the full response of more developments from Washington. We're also going to be having the president and the treasury secretary, as Ali suggested, are going to be announcing more details about the plan, investing directly in banks, also insurance -- insuring more.
COOPER: You pointed out to just me before we went on the air that the amount of money that the U.S. government is now going to be putting into banks, which is basically what the Europeans have been doing, or announced they're going to be doing, it's minuscule compared to what the Europeans are putting into their own banks.
SERWER: Well, that's right. I mean, the way the plan is...
COOPER: So, are we trying to do this on the cheap?
Well, the way the plan looks to me is, it's $250 billion, perhaps plus an additional $100 billion. The details are still fuzzy. But, remember, the Europeans are throwing the long ball here. They're throwing $2.3 trillion at their problem. The economy of Europe is, say, roughly the same size as the U.S. economy.
And we're only going to be doing $250 billion. So, they're spending 10 times as much as we are. Some people are suggesting that our plan could be overwhelming in that sense -- underwhelming, I should say. excuse me.
COOPER: Well, isn't this something that -- this whole idea of injecting money directly into banks, isn't that something that Paulson wrote off a couple weeks ago?
SERWER: Yes. In late September -- I think it was September 23, in fact -- there were suggestions that that was not necessarily to do at all. And now we have seen the Europeans do it.
And here we are, doing the European model. For those who suggest that, earlier in the year, we should have headed this thing off at the pass, you know, that may be a bit of a red herring, because no one foresaw exactly how bad this was going to be. This is uncharted territory right now. So, maybe it is prudent to keep shifting in terms of what you see as the focus.
COOPER: There are those who have said -- and I think CNN's Fareed Zakaria was among them -- who said, look, you know, that as painful as this is -- and gosh knows it's going to be incredibly painful for some folks, more than others -- but it's -- you know, there's going to be a lot of people hurting out of work, seeing their savings disappear -- but that it's a dose of reality in an economy that very badly needed reality, that our economy has been bloated and drunk for a long time on greed and other things, and this is a wakeup call.
SERWER: Yes, I think we have too much debt, as a nation.
Individuals, our government, we're overleveraged. We borrow too much, and we're paying the piper right now. You don't want to say that we need pain, that people all around America need to be thrown out of work. That's ridiculous. That's crazy. That's horrible, particularly people who did nothing wrong.
I mean, you look at a guy who works in a factory...
SERWER: ... who never borrowed more than his mortgage. He's perfectly safe, perfectly on target. And he loses a job because of this thing.
It is true that, you know, we shouldn't be borrowing as much as we had. People shouldn't be floating things on their cars or sending so much money overseas to pay for oil and our trade deficit. So, it is a wakeup call. But the pain really hurts people. Job losses, that's the worst.
COOPER: Even people looking at the stock market, now they're wondering, should I get in on the stock market now it's gone up 1,000 points?
SERWER: Well, you know, the reasons for being in the stock market are the same today as they were on Friday, as they were last year, which -- when the market was 14000, and now it's 9000.
You buy great companies with great profit prospects, hold them. Microsoft, Procter & Gamble, Exxon, these companies are going to be around for a long time. It's true they are cheaper now than they were a year ago. And it's true that they were cheaper Friday than today.
But, you know, this is a great lesson in market timing, right, Anderson? I mean, if you sold on Friday, you would have looked like a sucker, right?
COOPER: And trying to time the market, as we have had so many people, Suze Orman and others, telling us, is virtually impossible to do.
SERWER: A tough game.
COOPER: Andy Serwer, appreciate it. Thank you.
COOPER: So, what do you think about the new developments? Talk with Erica and me during a commercial break, also with other viewers, right now at AC360.com in our live chat. You can also check out Erica's live Web casts during the breaks.
Politics now, and a new plan from Barack Obama.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: It's a plan that begins with one word that's on everybody's mind. And it's easy to spell: J-O-B-S, jobs.
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: The specifics in a moment, and John McCain's new rallying cry.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MCCAIN: We're six points down. The national media has written us off. (AUDIENCE BOOING)
MCCAIN: But they forgot was to let you decide. We have got them just where we want them.
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: His new strategy coming up.
Also tonight, we're naming another name, adding it to our 10 most wanted list. Who's tonight's culprit of the collapse? Here's a hint. He says the recession is all in your head.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: We will create another two million jobs by rebuilding our crumbling roads and schools and bridges, our infrastructure. And if people ask you how are we going to pay for that, you just tell them, if we can afford to spend $10 billion a month rebuilding Iraq, we can spend some time rebuilding Ohio.
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
(END VIDEO CLIP) COOPER: Barack Obama today in Toledo, where the local unemployment rate is 8.7 percent. More than 60,000 Ohioans have gotten pink slips in the last six months alone, the state always close, now heavily in play.
As we mentioned at the top of the hour, Senator Obama laid out a new economic plan today aimed at insulating homeowners from the financial meltdown and, not incidentally, at winning support in places like Toledo.
Candy Crowley has the "Raw Politics"
CANDY CROWLEY, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Ohio by the numbers: 20 electoral votes, 48 percent Obama, 46 percent McCain, 7 percent unemployment.
OBAMA: It's easy to spell: J-O-B-S, jobs.
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
OBAMA: We have got to work on jobs.
CROWLEY: Adding new ideas to his economic proposal, Barack Obama told a crowd in Toledo he wants a two-year tax break for small businesses that create new jobs, penalty-free withdrawals of up to $10,000 on retirement accounts, and a moratorium on some home foreclosures on loans held by banks getting money from the rescue plan.
OBAMA: You will not be able to foreclose those their home for three months. We need to give people the breathing room to get back on their feet.
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
CROWLEY: Still, even as he called for help for hard-pressed voters, Obama also noted, some of those same voters aided and abetted the economic freefall.
OBAMA: If we're honest with ourselves, everyone was living beyond their means, from Wall Street, to Washington, to even some on Main Street. Lenders tricked some people into buying homes they couldn't afford, and some folks knew they couldn't afford them, and they bought them anyway.
CROWLEY: Sailing in the polls and most of battleground states, it is the beauty of being Barack that, unlike John McCain, whose campaign is still struggling, Obama can stay the course.
COOPER: Candy, it's interesting. You know, both candidates have made this very much a populist issue. And, then, to hear Obama there basically, essentially, saying to voters, you know what, you guys have some of the blame as well.
And I -- you know, it's interesting, because, right after I said that, I called Ali, and I said, hey, what percentage of homeowners are in foreclosure? And he said, about 2 percent, which means 98 percent of homeowners are not in foreclosure.
And, while there is certainly sentiment out there to help people who have been duped, who have been cheated, who were told lies, there is also a sentiment that, listen, I -- I got a mortgage I could afford, and I did the right thing. So, am I going to bail out people that simply wanted a bigger house...
CROWLEY: ... and they were betting that it would just go up? Do I want to bail out people that were in the business of flipping houses and got stuck at the wrong end of the market?
CROWLEY: So, I -- I just think it's interesting, as you say, that he -- it's all been populist, populist, bad banks, bad financial institutions, bad Fannie Mae. And, now, it's like, well, you guys, you know, we all kind of did it.
COOPER: So, he may alienate some, but he also may get more supporters because they're -- they share the same sentiment?
CROWLEY: Well, I just think it was something -- I'm not sure it comes down the fine line of, oh, we have got to get these supporters, so much as it's just an interesting point to make to say, you know, listen, we have -- we have all sort of gotten to this, yes.
COOPER: Candy Crowley, appreciate it. Thank you, on the trail tonight.
New polling and a new shift for John McCain's campaign. He's now being challenged in states that used to be fire engine red. We will tell you why, despite that, he now says he's got them rights where he wants to be.
Later, the McCain/Palin crowds, they have been rough at times, but are they as angry as some of the stuff you have heard? We wanted the facts, so we sent Gary Tuchman to a Palin event to cover the supporters, not the candidate. We will show you what he found.
And Levi Johnston, Palin's future son in law, speaking out for the first time, what does he think of Barack Obama? Find out ahead.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) MCCAIN: I'm proud of my supporters. I'm proud of the people that come. I'm proud of those veterans who have served their country, that come to my rallies and fire me up. I love them. And for anybody to intimate that the overwhelming 99 and 99 -- 100 percent is anything but patriotic and good Americans is frankly unacceptable. And I won't -- and I won't stand for it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Senator McCain interviewed today by our Dana Bash.
McCain campaigned today in two unlikely battleground states, North Carolina and Virginia. Now, the latest CNN poll of polls gives Obama a 4 our percent lead over McCain in Virginia. And the most recent CNN/"TIME" opinion poll shows they're both tied in North Carolina.
Now, nationwide, this is where the race stands tonight. Take a look. Among likely voters, Obama is up eight points over McCain, 50- 42, with 8 percent undecided, McCain behind in the numbers, and a leading conservative, Bill Kristol, calling on him to basically fire his campaign staff.
The candidate is under immense pressure to try to turn the race around in these final days. He launched a new attempt today to do just that.
CNN's Ed Henry has the "Raw Politics."
ED HENRY, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Call it John McCain 4.0, another shift in message, the maverick morphing back into the fighter he talked about at the convention.
MCCAIN: Fight for what's right for America.
HENRY: His new effort to close the deal with independent voters, so, less attacks on Barack Obama as risky and inexperienced, more about McCain as happy warrior.
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
MCCAIN: We never give up. We never quit. Now, let's go win this election and get this country moving again.
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
HENRY: McCain unveiling the new message in Virginia reflects his shakiness in a state Democrats have not carried in 44 years.
Influential conservative William Kristol declared, McCain has been totally overmatched by Obama, writing in "The New York Times," "The McCain campaign, once merely problematic, is now close to being out-and-out dysfunctional."
Kristol's fix? Let McCain be McCain.
MCCAIN: I have been fighting for this country since I was 17 years old, and I have the scars to prove it.
(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)
MCCAIN: But if you elect me president, I will fight to take America in a new direction from my first day in office until my last.
HENRY (on camera): After leaving Virginia, John McCain headed to North Carolina. And, on Friday, Sarah Palin is going to Indiana, two states Republicans should have locked down a long time ago, but haven't.
Ed Henry, CNN, Richmond.
COOPER: Well, John McCain is defending these states with a sharply smaller advertising budget than his opponent.
The "Raw Data" is kind of surprising. Senator Obama is outspending him on advertising about 4-1 in Virginia. In North Carolina, it's 3-1. Same goes for Indiana, reliably red Indiana, where Obama is spending three ad dollars for every dollar McCain spends and where he's also benefiting from Gary, Indiana's proximity to the Chicago media market, where he gets a lot of free coverage on the local news.
That's the "Raw Data."
McCain says he's just where he wants to be. We will tell you this new strategy and what we're hearing about his economic announcement tomorrow. David Gergen, Ed Rollins, and Roland Martin join me for that.
Also, a rare interview with Levi Johnston, the soon-to-be husband of Bristol Palin and father to their child -- his thoughts on his future mother-in-law, Barack Obama, and even a big hint on whether the child is a boy or a girl.
And Hillary Clinton out on the stump for Obama today with some tough talk about the Bushes -- a "Strategy Session" ahead on 360.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON (D), NEW YORK: What we will create across America, with a Democratic president and a bigger Democratic majority in the House and Senate, comes down to this: jobs, baby, jobs.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: From drill baby, drill, to jobs, baby, jobs -- Senator Hillary Clinton in Pennsylvania today with a play on words from Governor Palin's mantra on oil.
The election, the economy, they clashed again today. It was a historic surge on Wall Street and, at the same time, the candidates launching new promises, Obama announcing a sweeping economic proposal, while McCain creating a new campaign plan. They will meet for their third and final presidential debate on Wednesday, and the stakes are high for the man in lead and the underdog.
Joining us for our "Strategy Session" tonight, CNN senior political analyst and former presidential adviser to Republicans and Democrats David Gergen, CNN senior political contributor, Republican strategist and McCain supporter Ed Rollins, and CNN political analyst, radio talk show host and Obama supporter Roland Martin.
David, McCain came out telling supporters he's a fighter and shouldn't be counted out. But, today, he had no new economic ideas, whereas Barack Obama did, although, tomorrow, the McCain campaign says they will have some new ideas. Was that a missed opportunity today?
DAVID GERGEN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: I think it was. And it raises the stakes for tomorrow.
And this was a good theme today about fighting for you, fighting for America. It fits with who he is and is consistent with sort of his whole narrative in his life.
But, Anderson, as you know, it's been sort of a theme a week. It's -- this campaign started with the argument that terrorism is a transcendent challenge of our times. And then it became a campaign about reform, change in Washington, overhauling Washington. And then it was about, can you trust Obama, all the attacks on Obama, and now, this week, he's turning to, I'm going to fight for you.
Now we will have to see what the economic proposals bring. But, as you know, over the weekend, there was -- there seemed to be a lot of confusion in the McCain camp about whether they would even have economic proposals. I think he's -- I think he's wise to do that, smart.
Senator Obama had a -- seems to be on cruise control, came out with some, not blockbuster, but -- but solid proposals today. McCain needs to match him and beat him tomorrow.
COOPER: Ed, you wrote on a blog that it's -- it's critical that the McCain campaign understands the stakes. And you said that James Carville's famous slogan to Bill Clinton about, it's the economy, stupid, should now be replaced with -- quote -- "You morons, what have you done with my money, my life, and my kids' future?"
COOPER: I mean, A, that's certainly true. But do you think McCain gets it? I mean, do you see...
ED ROLLINS, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CONTRIBUTOR: Well, if he doesn't -- if he doesn't get it -- I mean, I think Bill Ayers and all that stuff was legitimate six to eight weeks ago. It's not legitimate today. No one cares about it. It's like -- like trying to get a drink out of a fire hydrant.
People want to know what you're going to do for me. Do you understand my problems? Do you have some kind of a plan? If we vote for you in 21 days, are you going to be able to put a theme together and get this economy moving again? We're not -- we don't have much confidence in the Bush group.
And -- and tomorrow is going to be very important. If he doesn't come up with an economic plan, and if he doesn't basically win this debate -- he can't tie this debate. He has to win this debate to get people to take a second look, or this race is over.
COOPER: Is it -- it's interesting. Roland, Ayers has not gone away. CNN's Dana Bash interviewed McCain earlier today, asked him about the whole Bill Ayers thing.
Let's play that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DANA BASH, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Many Republicans -- I'm sure you've heard this -- have said to me and to others, why is William Ayers fair game and Jeremiah Wright, who has a much more clear, established relationship with Barack Obama, in your view, is off the table?
MCCAIN: Well because William Ayers was an unrepentant terrorist. He is a person who, on 9/11, said that he wanted to set off more bombs. I mean, this is a very big question, I think that people have to ask. And clearly, Senator Obama said he was -- quote -- "a guy in the neighborhood."
BASH: But why not Wright?
MCCAIN: Because Mr. Ayers is an unrepentant terrorist. And that is a unique individual in American history.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Roland, why do you think it is that McCain is staying away from Wright? He said he would a while ago, and he's sticking to it.
ROLAND MARTIN, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Because he has to.
If he tries to go to it, they could use his own words against him by saying, wait a minute, how did you attack the North Carolina Republican Party for using it; now all of a sudden, you use it?
But, also, he looks even more desperate. Look, what you saw today was amazing. I have been extolling Ed all day that he was a prophet. In his column, he said that John McCain is being played like Hillary Clinton. Today's speech was exactly what Hillary Clinton did: I'm going to fight for you. I think what he's hoping is that the tail end of the Democratic primary is going to turn out the same way in this general, in terms of how she was able to go after Obama by saying, I am going to fight for you.
But sounds like he simply playing the entire Hillary Clinton campaign over and over again. And you know what? She didn't get the nomination. So, it might not work for him.
COOPER: Is -- David, Bill Kristol basically said the campaign staff should -- should all be fired or resign. Is it that bad? I mean, is there really such a disconnect?
GERGEN: Well, there are many, many Republican strategists and camp followers who are extremely discouraged right now, Anderson. And I think Bill Kristol is giving voice to that.
But, you know, he has already done that once. He fired his campaign earlier when he was in trouble. And he did rise from the ashes, and -- and admirably so.
But I have to tell you, whatever you think of the campaign staff -- and I have disagreed seriously with a lot of what they have done -- ultimately, it is the candidate who is responsible for his campaign staff, not the other way around. It's not the campaign staff who is responsible for the candidate. The candidate is responsible for the quality of his campaign, the message of his campaign, the money- raising, and the mobilization of voters.
And, on these issues, John McCain and his -- and what Bill Kristol was saying today, on every single one of those indicators, Barack Obama is running a superior campaign.
COOPER: We're going to more with our political panel ahead.
Has the GOP ticket crossed the line? That's what their critics are saying. A longtime veteran of the civil rights movement, John Lewis, said Palin and McCain are -- quote -- "sowing the seeds of hatred and division." We will go on the trail with Sarah Palin.
And our 10 most wanted culprits of the collapse -- tonight, a new name added to the list. Find out who it is -- when 360 continues.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOE BIDEN (D-DE), VICE-PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: These attacks don't hurt Barack Obama, these attacks don't hurt me. Every single false charge, every single baseless accusation that comes forward is an attempt to get you to focus on something other than what's going on in your family, other than something that's going -- what's in your neighborhood, in your state.
Beyond the attacks, and I mean this literally, beyond the attacks, what is John McCain really offering? (END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Senator Joe Biden in New Hampshire today. There's been a lot of discussion about the language and mood at the McCain-Palin rallies. There's also a number of edited videos on YouTube with interviews with people at these rallies. But are they fair? We decided to see for ourselves and turn our cameras on the crowd at a Palin rally. We'll do the same thing at a Biden rally, we should point out, in the days ahead.
Tonight, here's what Gary Tuchman found on the trail with Palin in Virginia.
GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): If getting the NASCAR vote is an important priority for Sarah Palin, this was an ideal place to do it, in a parking lot outside the Richmond International Raceway in Virginia.
GOV. SARAH PALIN (R-AK), VICE-PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: Here to sing our most beautiful national anthem, please welcome to the stage, Mr. Hank Williams Jr.
TUCHMAN: Introducing a country music legend to the crowd, one of Sarah Palin's largest, is a nice touch, too.
HANK WILLIAMS, COUNTRY MUSIC SINGER (singing): The left-wing liberal media have always been a really close-knit family.
PALIN: Hank Williams Jr. customized his song, "Family Tradition," to turn it into the McCain-Palin tradition.
WILLIAMS (singing): From any way you see.
TUCHMAN: The original song includes the lyric, "Of I get stoned and sing all night long, it's a family tradition." Few seemed to care or to know the original words as they partied politically with Palin.
PALIN: Just once I would love to hear Barack Obama say he wants America to win!
TUCHMAN: Palin's message, toned down. No mention of a recent claim Barack Obama pals around with terrorists.
(on camera) Have you heard Sarah Palin talks about him palling around with terrorists. Do you have believe that?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have a real problem with that.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I tell -- I tell my children not to pal around with some certain children. I sure don't want my president palling around with terrorists. TUCHMAN: Well, what does that mean, though? Are you saying that he's terrorist or that he'd be friendly with terrorists? What do you think that means?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think he's...
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think it says the wrong people...
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You're known by the company you keep.
TUCHMAN (voice-over): And she didn't mention the investigation in Alaska that led to the conclusion she abused her gubernatorial powers.
But her political antenna may be a bit frayed. When her enthusiastic supporters started shouting the word "louder" so they could hear her better, she thought they were yelling at her, not for her.
PALIN: I would hope at least that those protesters have the courage and the honor of thanking our veterans for giving them the right to protest.
TUCHMAN: Sarah Palin's high approval numbers may have slipped nationally, but you couldn't tell it from this crowd. And if there were protesters here among the thousands, they were quiet. It was her supporters making the noise.
Palin may be low-keying her attacks against Obama and Biden, but not all the supporters are.
(on camera) Do you believe Barack Obama is a Christian like he says?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
TUCHMAN: And do you believe he's an American like he says?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.
TUCHMAN: And why do you have the word "Hussein" there? It sounds like you're just on a hate campaign to be honest with you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No hate campaign. Everybody here that's looked at it, you're the first one that says it's hate. Who are you for?
TUCHMAN: Well, I'm for...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Who are you for?
TUCHMAN: I'm for honest journalism.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, then you don't want to talk about him.
TUCHMAN: Why is that? UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Because he's not honest.
PALIN: Only one man with the courage to keep on fighting for you, and that man is John McCain. Thank you for supporting him. God bless you, God bless America.
TUCHMAN (voice-over): Governor Palin then sped out of the track parking lot as the race enters its final rounds.
Gary Tuchman, CNN, Richmond, Virginia.
COOPER: We'll have more politics in a moment. Just want to update you on our breaking news. Asian markets picking up where the Dow today in the United States left off.
In Japan, the Nikkei index up 13 percent. Singapore and Australian markets right now are up 5 percent. Hong Kong is up 4. We'll have more with the money ahead. Back with our panel and politics next.
Plus, Southern California burning. The latest on two massive wildfires that have already killed at least two people. One firefighter described the blaze he's battling as "a blowtorch we cannot get in front of."
And Sarah Palin's soon-to-be son-in-law goes on the record as the rumors swirl around him. Is he being forced to marry 17-year-old Bristol Palin, who's expecting their baby in December? He's speaking out, Levi Johnson, coming up.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PALIN: Hello across America. I know -- we can feel it -- that there's a lot of anger right now. There's anger about the insider dealing of lobbyists, and there's anger at the greed of Wall Street. And there's anger about the arrogance of the Washington elite. And -- and there is anger about voter fraud.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Governor Sarah Palin in Virginia today on the trail. She didn't mention the other kind of anger that's erupted on the trail. This weekend, a respected veteran of the civil rights movement entered the fray.
Democratic Congressman John Lewis said McCain and Palin were, quote, "sewing the seeds of hatred and division. He also talked about the climate of hate that Governor George Wallace fostered in Alabama back in the 1960s.
Later, he said he hadn't intended to directly compare McCain and Palin to Wallace. But today, in an exclusive interview with CNN's Dana Bash, McCain made his anger clear. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R-AZ), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: The accusation that Congressman Lewis made is so far out of bounds and so disturbing to me. Of course it stopped me in my tracks. I never believed that John Lewis, who's an American hero who I admire, would ever make a comment of that nature. He even referred to the bombing of the church in Birmingham. That's unacceptable. It's totally unacceptable. And of course, I'm not going to accept it, and I'm going to reject it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, that's the latest. Let's dig deeper. Joining us again, our panel of CNN analysts and contributors: David Gergen, Ed Rollins, and Roland Martin.
Do you think -- Ed Rollins, do you think Congressman Lewis was way out of bounds by the comments he made? I mean, pretty strong stuff, comparing George McGovern essentially to John McCain, which is essentially what he...
ROLAND MARTIN, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: George Wallace.
COOPER: Excuse me, George Wallace.
MARTIN: One of the issues that he was looking at was the whole notion of hate.
What was interesting, though, I mean, I can't tell you the number of e-mails I began to receive when you saw the rhetoric turned up in these rallies and the reaction from the audience. People saying, what is going on with the chants, with the various statements? You cannot assign every single comment that was made to the entire campaign, obviously, but people were, indeed, bothered by what they were hearing.
Here's a guy, John Lewis, who was living in that moment, has got a steel plate in his head because he remembers that. Was he calling him a bigot? No. What he was saying: "Look, I'm hearing a hate on the campaign trail, and I've got a problem with it."
COOPER: Ed, do you think it was completely out of line?
ED ROLLINS, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: I think it was out of line. I think John McCain has been very careful not to bring Reverend Wright into this. He's made every effort not to get racism moving forward. And I think, to a certain extent, I don't think John Lewis intended the reaction he was going to have, at least I hope he didn't. I have great respect for him.
But it's hero calling another hero names, and I think that, to an extent, John McCain had a right to react the way he did.
COOPER: David, I want to -- just trying to pull it up on my computer. I want to read you this thing that this Republican GOP chairman said. He encouraged campaign volunteers to make a connection between Obama and Osama bin Laden by saying they, quote, both have friends that bombed the Pentagon, obviously in a reference to Bill -- to Bill Ayers.
What do you think of that? I mean, this guy is not, you know, part of McCain's campaign. He's not, you know, in McCain's campaign. But is this -- where is this going? Where is this going?
DAVID GERGEN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: All sorts of people are going over the line in this campaign in recent weeks.
John McCain was absolutely right to reject any comparison between himself and George Wallace. He had every right to stand up and say what he said. I think he was right to do that.
But when is John McCain, when is Sarah Palin going to reject the kind of comments that have been made at their rallies? You know, when they have called Obama a terrorist, when they have said "off with his head," when they have said, "kill him," when they have said "get him"? When are we going to hear words of repudiation about what's been happening, the hatred that's been expressed at some of these rallies?
COOPER: David, you've heard -- I mean, John McCain himself says, "Look, this is -- you know, 99.99 percent of the people that come to my rallies are, you know, good upstanding patriotic Americans." Do you buy that?
GERGEN: Absolutely. I think they are. And they're fine Americans. But there are people who are showing up at these rallies who are sewing -- John Lewis was right about the sewing of hatred here.
And you know, I think the George Wallace comparison goes too far. But it would be welcome -- John McCain did a good thing the other day by talking to that woman, saying, "He's not an Arab. He's a decent man," and so forth and so on. But when are they going to repudiate, in the same way that he just showed so much anger toward the George Wallace -- George Wallace comparison, when are they going to repudiate some of the people who are saying these hateful things in the rallies?
COOPER: Well, I want to play something that a pastor delivering an invocation at a McCain-Palin rally said this weekend. Let's play that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There are millions of people around this world praying to their God, whether it's Hindu, Buddha, Allah, that his opponent wins for a variety of reasons. And, Lord, I pray that you would guard the organization (ph), because they will think that their God is bigger than you if that happens.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Kind of weird. I mean, he's basically saying that folks who are praying for Obama are Hindus or Buddhists or Muslim. MARTIN: What angers me about that -- it has nothing to do with the McCain and -- McCain or Palin campaign, is that a Christian would have the audacity to question the salvation of another Christian. That is what's so offensive.
When a person professes with their mouth that Jesus Christ is their lord and savior, you don't question that. And he knows Obama is a Christian. He knows what his background is. And here is a pastor who stands here and makes that kind of comment. And I've seen that before -- we've seen it in this campaign over and over and over again.
And so when people say, "Well, we can't control what people who are saying when we introduce them," no, you can pull people aside and say, "This is how we're going to conduct ourselves at this rally and what you can say and what you cannot say."
That is offensive from a faith perspective, and faith leaders, regardless of their partisan views, should call him out for it. That's an embarrassment as a preacher, somebody who preaches the gospel.
COOPER: Ed, are these just isolated incidents? Or is this, you know, sort of...
ROLLINS: Unfortunately, we're in an ugly period of American politics, even before this campaign. And we're polarized. We're polarized in the Congress. We're polarized in the country.
And in every rally, Democrat-Republican rally, there's intense people, and there are people who aren't out there arguing about positions. They argue hatred. They think that really this is the direction of the country. And there are people who hate Barack Obama, just as there are people who hate George Bush and John McCain.
And somehow we've got to get back to being Americans again, and whoever wins this election, I assume it's going to be Barack Obama. We've got to come together and help them.
MARTIN: Anti-American stuff is amazing, as well. Anderson, when you start hearing people chant the whole "USA, USA," and I understand what that means, but when your back is turned, typically watching a game, you're typically hearing -- you're cheering for the USA against somebody who doesn't like the United States. They're saying, "Obama, you're anti-U.S. McCain is U.S."
COOPER: Now, they did chant "USA," also, at the Obama acceptance speech a the Democratic convention.
MARTIN: Which makes no sense whatsoever.
COOPER: Roland Martin. We're going to leave it there. David Gergen. Ed Rollins, thanks.
We're going to update our breaking news on the surge in world stock markets and the latest from Southern California. We're looking at live pictures where firefighters are battling two blazes being described as blowtorches -- it's kind of dark there. Saw it from the left there in the distance, fueled by strong Santa Ana winds.
Plus Sarah Palin's future son-in-law is speaking out about the baby he's expecting with Palin's 17-year-old daughter and rumors that he's being forced to do the right thing. We'll talk about that ahead.
And we're naming names again tonight. Coming up, we'll reveal another "Culprit of the Collapse," part of our "Ten Most Wanted List." Be right back.
COOPER: Quick update on today's market surge. Our breaking news, it is going global in Japan, massive gains, the Nikkei index now up 13 percent, outpacing even the Dow industrials today, which rose 11 percent.
Stocks are also up in a big way in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore and Australia. Of course, we'll see what happens tomorrow on Wall Street, especially after the president speaks again with more details on the administration's financial rescue plan.
Both candidates have said that now is not the time to talk about blame. Frankly, that's what politicians always say. The truth is now is exactly the right time to talk about blame. People deserve to know how we got into this mess and who should be held accountable.
Tonight, we're naming names again, telling you who's responsible one our top -- our "Ten Most Wanted List," the "Ten Most Wanted Culprits of the Collapse." We named three culprits so far. Tonight, a fourth, a name familiar to many. Senator Phil Gramm, who by the way, got a lot of help along the way to get on this list.
Here's 360's Tom Foreman.
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The start of the holidays, 1999, and the financial industry gets a gift: a new law allowing banks to merge with investment and insurance companies.
The big backer, Texas Senator Phil Gramm, who says it promotes competition. Never mind that it also overturns a Depression-era law forbidding such economic giants, because their failure could crash the economy.
The new laws, many supporters figure, times have changed.
Marcus Mabry of the "New York Times."
MARCUS MABRY, "THE NEW YORK TIMES": Bill Clinton supported that legislation, and so did the vast majority of the Senate. It passed something like 95-0 and a huge majority in the House of Representatives. So it was a bipartisan legislation.
FOREMAN: One Christmas later, and Gramm is at it again. This time, he succeeds in reducing government regulation on those big financial firms. And with those two measures, some economic analysts say he built the pillars of the current financial collapse.
MABRY: What Senator Gramm's worst critics would say is that he allowed an atmosphere -- a permissive atmosphere of risk taking, with no penalties, to take hold. So Wall Street could get as greedy as it wanted, and there was no government agency to regulate it.
FOREMAN: Still, in 24 years as a lawmaker and as a trained economist, too, Gramm was a staunch opponent of regulation. Could his success with just two laws really be that critical?
Yes, according to progressive economist James Galbraith.
JAMES GALBRAITH, ECONOMIST, UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS: I've been quoted as saying he was the sorcerer's apprentice of financial instability and disaster. And I think his authority as an economist, as someone who has an advanced degree in our subject, also lent weight to -- in particular, to his positions.
MCCAIN: My dear friend and colleague, Senator Phil Gramm.
FOREMAN: Fast forward to this past summer. Gramm is an advisor to the John McCain, dismissing complaints about the economy.
PHIL GRAMM (R), FORMER U.S. SENATOR: You hear this constant lying, complaining about our loss of our competitiveness.
FOREMAN: McCain severed ties with him over that. Gramm, however, still defends his legislation telling the "Texas Observer," "I've never seen any evidence that opening up competition among banks and insurance companies in any way contributed to this. You've got a lot of people trying to rewrite history."
(on camera) Maybe, but in Washington now, that is the minority opinion, as more people in both parties say efforts to cut regulation just went too far.
(voice-over) We tried to reach the former Senator through his employer these days, a big Swiss financial firm, but we received no call back from Phil Gramm, one of our "Ten Most Wanted Culprits of the Collapse" -- Anderson.
COOPER: Tom, well, he had a lot of Democrats and Republicans in Congress and the White House who helped them. But Phil Gramm now joins our "Ten Most Wanted Culprits of the Collapse." It began last week. Joe Cassano from AIG, followed by Richard Fuld from Lehman Brothers and Chris Cox from the SEC. And now there he is, Phil Gramm.
More on the financial crisis ahead. But first, Erica Hill joins us with a "360 News and Business Bulletin" -- Erica.
ERICA HILL, CNN ANCHOR: Anderson, we begin in Southern California. Two huge wildfires there, fueled by the Santa Ana winds, have already claimed at least two lives and destroyed dozens of homes.
You're looking at live pictures now of the blazes from our affiliate KCAL out of Los Angeles. And you can see the enormity of that fire. At one point today those flames actually jumped an eight- lane freeway in northern Los Angeles. Keeping a close eye on that.
General Motors will close an SUV plant in Wisconsin in December. That is earlier than planned. They'll also shut down a metal stamping plant in Michigan by the end of next year. In all, more than 2,500 workers will lose their jobs.
Big Brown's racing days are over. The 3-year-old colt injured his right front foot today during a workout and won't recover in time for one last race. Instead, the Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner will begin his second career as a stud a few months early.
Sarah Palin's future son-in-law told the Associated Press he is not being forced to marry 17-year-old Bristol Palin, who is carrying their child. Eighteen-year-old Levi Johnson said they love each other and had planned all along to get married. He also said he was not forced to attend the Republican convention, Anderson.
COOPER: All right. Well, still ahead in New York's Times Square, ten of the world's most competitive eaters face off, and the record for pizza eating got smashed. Hmm, pizza. It's our "Shot of the Day." Hmm, vomiting.
Plus, new details on the economic crisis, how Britain, Europe and the U.S. fix the mess. And new signs that investors like what they're hearing, at least today. We'll find out what happens tomorrow. The latest, top of the hour.
COOPER: Time now for our "Beat 360" winner. Erica, it's our daily chance to viewer -- challenge to viewers to come up with a caption better than the one we could come up with for the photo that we post on our blog every day. Does that make sense?
COOPER: All right. Tonight's picture, John McCain waving to volunteers working inside his campaign headquarters in Arlington, Virginia. It happened yesterday.
Our staff winner, Ish. His caption: "Senator McCain desperately waves for someone to reopen the window of opportunity."
(SOUND EFFECT: LAUGHTER)
HILL: That's Ish's first win.
COOPER: Congratulations, Ish.
Our viewer winner is Mary. She didn't say where she's from. Her caption: "Bye-bye middle class." (SOUND EFFECT: DRUM BEAT)
COOPER: Your "Beat 360" T-shirt is on the way. You can check out all the entries. Play along tomorrow at AC360.com.
Time now for "The Shot."
HILL: Ah, yes, "The Shot."
COOPER: Here at 360, we do enjoy our pizza. Do we not, Erica?
HILL: Who doesn't like a good pie?
COOPER: Exactly. So let's just say that up front. But clearly, we're amateurs compared to these pizza power houses. In Times Square yesterday, ten competitive eaters -- I guess, I don't know, they're professional -- they battled it out over dozens of pies.
HILL: It's actually a professional sport, competitive eating.
HILL: Believe it or not. They train.
COOPER: Bless them.
They have ten minutes to eat as many slices as they could. They all have their own technique. The winner, 24-year-old Joey Chestnut.
HILL: There you go.
COOPER: That's his name. Joey Chestnut consumed an astounding 45 slices. Oy.
HILL: I have to say, just thinking about it -- I have to say the whole eating contest things...
HILL: ... really makes me want to hurl.
COOPER: I like the guy with in Mohawk who's listening to music. What kind of music do you think psyches you up to just shove pizza down your gullet?
HILL: Heavy metal maybe? I don't know.
COOPER: All right. Coming up at the top of the hour, more pizza, more with our breaking news, unfortunately. Global markets rebounding. We've got details on the administration's new financial rescue plan and what the economic future may hold for all of us.
Also, how the candidates are handling the crisis. Obama's new relief plan and John McCain's new strategy ahead on 360.