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THE SITUATION ROOM
A.P.: Jackson Net Worth $236 Million; Jackson Will Discovered; Jackson Memorial At the Apollo; Iraqi Violence from the Sidelines; Child Survives Plane Crash; Franken Wins Minnesota Senate Seat
Aired June 30, 2009 - 17:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN ANCHOR: Also, it may be Jackson's single most valuable asset -- the rights to more than 200 songs by The Beatles. We are now learning how much it may be worth.
And another plane crash at sea, but this time one survivor -- a child -- plucked from the waters where more than 100 people died.
Wolf Blitzer is off.
I'm Suzanne Malveaux.
And you're in THE SITUATION ROOM.
Breaking new developments happening right now in the Michael Jackson story. A will has surfaced, along with new details of a public viewing and private memorial at the Neverland Ranch. Plus, the first detailed look at his finances.
The Associated Press is reporting that Jackson claimed a net worth of $236 million in March of 2007, with assets topping $567 million.
Now, we are covering all of the angles here. We're going to go live to the Apollo Theater this hour, where a celebration is underway -- you can see it right there.
And right now, Susan Roesgen is outside the Jackson family compound near Los Angeles -- Susan, tell us the news there.
SUSAN ROESGEN, CNN GULF COAST CORRESPONDENT: Well, the news is really different from what it was yesterday, Suzanne, that's for sure. Yesterday, Joe Jackson the patriarch of the family here, came out in front of the home to say there was no way that his son would be buried at Neverland or would have a funeral at Neverland.
Now, we understand that, in fact, there's going to be a public viewing at Neverland, which is about 100 miles north of here, near Santa Barbara, on Friday.
Suzanne, they plan to have a 30 car cavalcade. Already, the LAPD planning the logistics of this -- how to get 30 cars, including the hearse -- all the way from wherever Michael Jackson's body is right now, the unnamed mortuary, to Neverland Ranch. Tomorrow -- oh, sorry -- on Thursday, where on Friday they're going to have that public viewing. And then a private ceremony of some kind for the family on Sunday -- Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: And what about Joe Jackson?
Where has he been?
Is he -- has he been there to the ranch or does he live close by?
ROESGEN: Well, we understand, Suzanne, that he lives here, behind me, at the family's home in Encino sometimes. This is where they've had that impromptu, informal shrine. You still see the balloons, the flowers, the stuffed animals and still some people waiting, hoping to catch a glimpse of Joe Jackson, Michael Jackson's father, or Katherine Jackson, Michael Jackson's mother, or some of the children, more importantly.
And we've seen a few dark-colored vehicles go in and out, Suzanne. But there's really no way to know who's still inside the home behind me, especially where are the children -- the children, ages 12, 11 and seven.
The truth is, Suzanne, that when Michael Jackson was alive, they were always covered. They were always covered. They were always wearing a mask. So they could be out here having a lemonade stand right now and we wouldn't even know it was them.
But people are still here today because they're hoping to get a glimpse of somebody that brings Michael Jackson back to life for them.
MALVEAUX: And, honestly, there's a lot of curiosity where you're standing outside, hoping for someone to emerge.
But to your knowledge, you haven't seen the children?
You haven't seen the relatives there so far, huh?
ROESGEN: No. Not today.
MALVEAUX: All right. Thank you so much, Susan.
Let's get more now on the discovery of Jackson's will.
Our CNN's Richard Quest is working that part of the story -- and, Richard, tell us, what have you been learning?
What do you know about this?
RICHARD QUEST, CNN ANCHOR, CORRESPONDENT: Well, Suzanne, you really couldn't write this in a drama. I mean the all-important document, the will, that is suddenly found at the last moment. And that's exactly what's happened.
The will is alleged to have been written in 2002. It's now been given to the family. Apparently, it was in the Jacksons' lawyer's safe. The lawyer was out of the country and it's only just been retrieved.
We now know from Mr. McMillan, Londell McMillan, the lawyer for the overall Jackson family, that it has been presented and it is to be filed in court.
And what that means, of course, is that once it is valid -- once it has been validated by the court as Jackson's last will and testament, then that, of course, becomes the most important document about what happens, in many ways, to his assets and what happens to his estate -- Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: And, Richard, what makes a will valid or non-valid?
QUEST: Lawyers here have been telling me that California has very liberal laws concerning what makes a valid will.
If it's written in his own hand, then you've just got to prove that. If it's been a typewritten document, then it will just need witnesses and it will -- it doesn't even have to say who the executors are. The court can always establish that afterwards.
Provided it's signed -- in some cases, it's been witnessed -- it will be a valid document, for all intents and purposes.
And at the moment, it seems -- and I say that very, very judiciously. At the moment, nobody seems to be calling this document into question.
MALVEAUX: And what about those people who are left out of the will, Richard?
Do they have any chance at all of -- of getting anything, any part of this -- of his estate?
QUEST: Other lawyers that I've spoken to make it quite clear that if you're not in the will and you're not the beneficiary of a trust, then, frankly, unless you can prove the will is fraudulent, the man was incompetent or that it was by coercion, to quote one lawyer: "The gravy train has come to a halt."
So the short answer is anyone who was living off the estate of Michael Jackson might suddenly find themselves without a paymaster.
MALVEAUX: OK. Richard Quest, thank you so much.
Right now, the legendary Apollo Theater in New York's Harlem neighborhood -- it is packed -- packed with Jackson fans, as it holds a public memorial and then a moment of silence.
I want you to take a listen now.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let me hear you.
(MUSIC) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Young uns.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I like what you're doing.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Over here.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Come on. Come on.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Pump your fists like this, man. We want the party to go, man. Yo, fellas, fellas, say ho.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ho.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ho.
Now, scream, ladies.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I hear these ladies right here.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I hear that lady right there.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: These ladies in here.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And side to side while you're singing.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's go.
MALVEAUX: All right. Taking you there live. "Do You Remember?" -- that was actually one of my -- one of my favorites. I have that album.
What do you think Michael Jackson's legacy is?
You can submit your video comments to ireport.com/situationroom and we'll try to get some of those on the air tomorrow.
Jack Cafferty is in New York -- Jack, what are you watching?
JACK CAFFERTY, CNN ANCHOR: A couple of high profile sex scandals were probably the last thing the Republican Party needed.
This is the party of family values, after all, remember?
First was Senator John Ensign of Nevada, who admitted to having an affair with a former staff member.
Next that was sleazy South Carolina governor, Mark Sanford. After going AWOL for nearly a week, with staffers saying he was hiking the Appalachian Trail, it turns out he was hiking in Argentina -- having an affair with a woman down in Buenos Aires.
Both Ensign and Sanford had been considered 2012 Republican presidential hopefuls.
Also, don't forget about Louisiana Senator David Vitter, who's still in the Senate, despite for calls for his resignation after his phone number showed up in the records of a D.C. madam a couple of years ago.
Some wonder how much damage these things do, as far as the Republicans and the 2010 elections are concerned. After all, the sex scandals come at a time when the Republican Party has been trying to rebrand itself.
Although Republicans certainly aren't alone in dealing with these things -- see Democrats John Edwards, Eliot Spitzer -- they do make life more difficult for the party of traditional family values.
But former Vice President Dick Cheney, for one, isn't worried. He says the Republican 2012 bench remains strong. Cheney says the party has: "got some great talents out there and that in adversity, there is opportunity."
Remember, Cheney helped create the adversity that the Republican Party is currently trying to overcome.
Here's the question: How much will recent Republican sex scandals affect the upcoming races?
Go to CNN.com/caffertyfile and you can post a comment on my blog -- Wolf.
MALVEAUX: Thank you, Jack.
Well, thousands of Michael Jackson fans are lined up outside the historic Apollo Theater, where a public memorial for the singer is happening right now. You're seeing those pictures. We're going to take you there live for a moment of silence.
Also, a child survives a plane crash at sea that appears to have killed everyone else on board. We have details of the latest Airbus crash.
Plus, U.S. troops -- as they withdraw from Iraqi cities, the top U.S. commander there -- well, loses his cool a bit with reporters.
What set him off?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEN. RAY ODIERNO, U.S. COMMANDER, IRAQ: I don't know how many times you want -- how many times do you want me to say that?
I don't know.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 125th Street needs to hear you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Louder!
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Louder! Louder!
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Let's go, baby.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But what?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Over here.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I like what's -- I like how it's all sounding.
MALVEAUX: Well, you're watching it there live -- happening now, a memorial tribute to Michael Jackson at Harlem's famed Apollo Theater, where Jackson got started. The inside, as you can see, absolutely packed. Outside, thousands of people are lined up. We're going to take you live this hour for a moment of silence in his honor.
Turning now to Iraq. For Iraqis, it has been a day of celebrating in the streets. But the festivals are dampened by deadly insurgent violence. At least 30 people were killed by what was described as a huge bombing in the northern city of Kirkuk. Dozens more were wounded in today's attack on a busy shopping area.
The celebrations and the violence both come in the wake of the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraqi cities and towns.
Joining me now is Pentagon correspondent Chris Lawrence.
And now that they are basically off the job in Iraqi cities, tell us what is next for the U.S. forces that are there -- Chris.
CHRIS LAWRENCE, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Well, Suzanne, for some of them, it's going to be training and advising the Iraqi troops. But for the combat troops, they're effectively on the bench and waiting to be called into action.
LAWRENCE (voice-over): How do you say good-bye?
For some Iraqis, with celebrations in the street, as American troops move to the outskirts of town. Six years after combat troops arrived in Iraqi cities, they've packed up and pulled back -- mostly moving to rural bases. At the high point of the surge, the U.S. had built up nearly 100 outposts in Iraqi neighborhoods. They've all been closed down or turned over.
But the top U.S. commander got frustrated when he was repeatedly asked how many of his 130,000 troops are still in Iraqi cities.
ODIERNO: How many times do you want me to say that?
I don't know. What I'm telling you is it's training and advising teams that remain in Baghdad. And it will be different tomorrow than it is today. And that's why I don't want to say a number, because it will be inaccurate.
LAWRENCE: Some troops are still in the Green Zone, guarding the new American embassy. Others are at Camp Victory, just a 15 minute drive from the center of Baghdad. And Iraqis agreed to exempt American base Falcon, even though it's inside Baghdad's border.
American soldiers could rush back into parts of Baghdad in a matter of minutes. But as of now, they can't -- unless the Iraqis ask for help and invite the Americans in.
LAWRENCE: So what if this agreement doesn't work, if American troops can't protect themselves under these conditions?
General Odierno says they retain the right to self-defense. And if it became too dangerous, U.S. officials would try to rework with the agreement -- first, on a local level; and then, if they had to, nationally -- Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: Thank you, Chris.
A massive rescue effort is underway after an Airbus A310 crashed in the Indian Ocean off the coast of the island nation of Comoros. One hundred fifty-three people were on board the Yemeni jet. But so far, there is only one known survivor.
Let's bring in our Abbi Tatton -- Abbi, what details do we have about this plane crash?
ABBI TATTON, CNN INTERNET REPORTER: The initial reports were just of a horrible scene -- bodies and debris floating in the water. And then this one ray of hope from the airline, Yemenia Airlines, saying that a child was plucked from the water, taken to a local hospital there. Later reports conflicting as to whether this was a younger boy or an older girl. That information is still coming out.
What we do know of this fatal crash, 142 people boarded last night, plus 11 crew from the Yemeni capital, bound southbound to the Comoros islands. This is a former French colony almost 2,000 miles to the south.
Comoros officials say that the plane there attempted a landing, but then, for reasons unknown, made a dramatic U-turn and then crashed into the water. That would have been 1:50 a.m. local time, almost seven p.m. Eastern here.
The cause of the crash unknown. But Yemenis -- the Yemen Civil Aviation Authority is saying that there were strong winds and rough at the time of the crash last night.
MALVEAUX: And, Abbi, what are the details that we know about the plane?
TATTON: Well, this was an Airbus -- an Airbus -- the second crash of an Airbus in a month.
On June 1st, it was an Airbus operated by Air France. That was an Airbus 330. This is a different Airbus -- a different airline. This is an Airbus 310 300, operated by Yemenia Airlines. And we are getting some details about this specific plane.
Now, the French transport minister telling me here today that in 2007, this specific plane was cited as having faults during a routine safety check. Obviously, that's something people are going to be looking into. There's a team from Airbus, along with French and Yemeni rescue teams now headed to the area. MALVEAUX: OK. Thank you so much, Abbi.
If reports are true that there is a single survivor in the Yemeni Airbus crash, it would join a roster of devastating air crashes to give back just one person.
In January, of 1972, a flight attendant plummeted 33,000 feet after her plane exploded. She landed on the snowy slopes of what was then Czechoslovakia. She broke both legs, but she lived to tell about it.
August, 1987 -- a 4-year-old girl was to only survivor after her plane crashed just after takeoff from Detroit's Metro Airport. And August, 2006 -- pilot James Polehinke was the only one of 49 people to survive the crash of a Comair flight near Lexington, Kentucky.
Well, in just a few minutes, there's going to be a moment of silence for Michael Jackson. Thousands of fans are there. And we're going to bring that to you live.
Plus, suspected ties to North Korea land a company in trouble with the U.S. government. Now, it's taking action.
ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.
MALVEAUX: We want to go directly to Al Franken.
He is Minnesota's new senator -- that declared today, after a very long and contentious race.
Let's take a quick listen to Al Franken at the mike.
AL FRANKEN, WINNER OF MINNESOTA SENATE RACE: I'm thrilled and honored by the faith that Minnesotans have placed in me. I'm also humbled, not just by the closeness of this election, but by the enormity of the responsibility that comes with this office. We have a lot of work to do in Washington, but that's why I signed up for the job in the first place.
When we started this campaign way back in February of 2007, I said that Americans have never backed away from tough challenges and Minnesotans have always led the way. Working with our fantastic senior senator, Amy Klobuchar, I'm going to fight hard to make quality health care accessible and affordable to all Minnesotans, to make sure that our kids have an education that prepares them for a 21st century economy, to make Minnesota the epicenter of a new, renewable energy economy that frees us from our dependence on foreign oil, to restore our standing in the world and put people to work here at home.
To those Minnesotans who worked for me, volunteered for me, voted for me, I can't tell you how grateful I am. When you win an election this close, you know that not one bit of effort went to waste.
And to those who devoted their time and energy to supporting Senator Coleman, I can only imagine how hard these past months have been.
But no matter whether you voted for me or for Senator Coleman or for Senator Barkley or whether you voted at all, I want the people of Minnesota to know that I'm ready to work for all of you, that I'm committed to being a voice for all Minnesotans in the U.S. Senate.
I know there's been a lot of talk about the fact that when I'm sworn in, I'll be the 60th member of the Democratic Caucus. But that's -- that's not how I see it.
The way I see it, I'm not going to Washington to be the 60th Democratic senator, I'm going to Washington to be the second senator from the State of Minnesota. And that's how I'm going to do this job.
MALVEAUX: Minnesota's new senator, Al Franken, saying he is ready to go to work for his state.
I want to bring in own Gloria Borger to kind of give us a lay of the land here. Obviously, it's a race that everybody has been following for quite some time. This is the next step now.
What -- what does this mean for -- for the Democrats now that they have a larger majority?
GLORIA BORGER, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, it means that they've got 60 seats, which would give them a filibuster-proof majority. But that's assuming that Democrats, and two Independents who we include in that, would agree on everything which is, of course, a large assumption that is not necessarily true.
BORGER: But, of course, they'll take every vote they can get at this point.
Don't forget, this has been a hotly contested fight over these last eight months -- very divisive, splitting the parties in the Senate, leaving the State of Minnesota unrepresented. And so I think that a lot of people on both sides of the aisle are kind of breathing a sigh of relief that it's -- that it's finally over, no matter how it was decided.
MALVEAUX: Do you think it helps the Obama administration and the president pushing forward some of the things that have been so difficult for him, whether it's energy or health care?
BORGER: Yes. Sure. I think it does. I mean, look, a vote is a vote is a vote. And I think Al Franken's politics are clearly more on the liberal side. So he would be more likely to go along with Barack Obama on things like climate change, on things like health care reform, than somebody like Democrat Ben Nelson of Nebraska, who's much more of a moderate who he may lose on certain votes.
BORGER: So I think that they would look at Franken as much more dependable.
MALVEAUX: OK. Gloria Borger making sense of all of this.
Thank you so much.
MALVEAUX: One of Michael Jackson's prized acquisitions was the rights to a vast Beatles music library.
Well, what is -- what will happen to that practically priceless catalog now?
Iranian leaders say the election is confirmed and they will tolerate no more protests.
But what happens to those arrested during the uprising?
Will their families ever see them again?
MALVEAUX: A bad thunderstorm is passing through New York City right now. And it is preventing us from getting a live signal from the Apollo Theater.
A moment of silence is going on right now, at the time of the pop singer's death last Thursday. And once we're able to get a signal, we're going to bring that observance as it happens.
In the meantime, want to go to Chad Myers, our meteorologist, who is taking a look at what is happening there over New York City and that celebration.
Can you tell us what you're seeing -- Chad?
CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Suzanne, a couple of things. Not a severe event -- no hail. But there was a little bit of lightning. Also, if you're watching CNN on DIRECTV or DISH Network, you know, that sometimes when it rains, you lose your signal. And that's what has happened to all of our satellite trucks there. It is raining so hard that the signal can't get from the satellite truck up to the satellite and back down to our studios.
And so we've lost the signal for now. But there is much clearing back out to the west. By the time you get to West Orange and most of all of Bergen County, the rain showers are ending. This entire event should be over...
MALVEAUX: OK, Chad, we've -- we've actually got a live signal now. MYERS: See. There you go.
MALVEAUX: And we see Reverend Al Sharpton speaking, so let's go directly to the event.
REV. AL SHARPTON, PRESIDENT, NATIONAL ACTION NETWORK: Well, we have with us tonight, to remember Michael Jackson, to stand with him and for him, one of the greatest storytellers in modern history.
May we hear from our brother, filmmaker Spike Lee?
SPIKE LEE, DIRECTOR: What's up, Harlem? This is a great day.
Well, we're going to celebrate the life of a beautiful human being. I'm not a preacher like Rev because he had you fired up in here. And what Mike meant to us, it means so much. And let's not wallow in the negativity that they are trying to drag us down into. We are not having it.
As my grandma would say, we aren't starting it. As they say in Brooklyn, "nah." It's all about love. It's all about love. And you guys are special -- I know you waited on line for five hours. And the good Lord said that you would be the group that would be here. We had the moment of silence. So, thank you very much. Let's remember Michael, love.
SHARPTON: So let us go forward now. Let's spread the word. It was Michael Jackson that opened up the door. Every time I say something say Michael, because I want the press to understand we didn't come tonight to see a star. We came to salute a legacy. We came to uplift history. We came to raise up an icon.
There was one young man that wouldn't stay in his place. There was one young man that saw poverty and said "We are the World." There was one young man that moonwalked and slid forward and brought the music industry to new heights. There was one young man that broke down race barriers, national barriers, made the way for Tiger Woods, made the way for Oprah Winfrey, made the way for Barack Obama.
You can lie on him but we believe in him. You can scandalize him, but we know better. Long live. Long live. Long live.
SHARPTON: Long live.
SHARPTON: All right.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All right. All right. Ladies and gentlemen, give it up for Reverend Al Sharpton and Spike Lee.
SHARPTON: Come on. Come on.
They wanted the satellites -- now let me say this as the family prepares over the next few days, then we're going to have a global celebration. Michael was one of the few artists that the whole world celebrates.
We must tell our children this story. You that are in your 40s and 50s that got over the question of limitations, that's why we achieved a president now for all America. That's why we have CEOs. Michael helped create that climate.
Don't let those down that didn't let us down. Don't forget the bridges that brought us across. Don't let people talk about people's weaknesses and ignore their strengths. Don't let people depict those of us that paid a price, like if they was just some freak.
Michael was no freak. Michael was a genius. Michael was an innovator. You can't take someone with extraordinary skills, extraordinary talent and make him an ordinary person. He was extraordinary. He lived extraordinary and we love him with an extraordinary passion.
So as you line up to leave and as we bring in the next crowd, I'm glad the media had it covered today, thousands came in Harlem. Thousands came to celebrate Michael Jackson. He and his brothers, they weren't even the Jackson 5 then. They were the Jackson brothers.
At an amateur night here at the Apollo their first national show case, but they went from here to the top and they never forgot those of us. And that's why we are here today, not to forget them.
Thank brother Spike Lee. Thank Grandmaster Flash. Thank Janelle Procope and the Apollo. Thank the Jackson family. Let them hear you in California. We love the Jackson family.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All right. All right, give it up for Reverend Al Sharpton. Come on. Come on. Give it up for Reverend Al Sharpton, Mr. Spike Lee; they're here to share the love with us.
Our family, we still have more family members outside waiting to come in. So in love and in peace, we're going to ask you to make your way to the exits so we can let the rest of the family in.
The lines were going all the way up to 135th street so we got to let some of the people in. So do us a favor, we're going to have you exit that door and go in peace and remember what Michael used to say, "make the world a better place for you and for me."
That's real talk. That's real talk.
And we want to thank the Apollo Theater for having this event here. If you have some memorabilia you want to bring down to the front and lay it down here, you are more than welcome. And go in peace.
You know, remember the man who we are celebrating and paying tribute to today. Don't let this day go by and then tomorrow, we forget about him. Continue to have Michael in your heart. That man was a man of love, serious love. Do you feel his spirit in the room today? Do you feel his spirit here today, family? I swear I do. I was lucky enough and blessed enough to see him when they first did their show here at the Apollo, and watched them. This is the place, you know, where our slogan is "Where Stars are Born and legends are Made" and that has happened.
The Jackson Brothers came here. They went on to sign with Motown Records, became the Jackson 5 and we have never ever forgotten Michael Jackson and we never will, ever, ever.
So family we want to have you move quickly there are still people waiting out on line, I know you waited five hours and God bless you for that. But as the Reverend said...
MALVEAUX: Michael Jackson had a long history with the Apollo Theatre. This photo shows him performing with his brothers at the theater's weekly amateur night. This was back in 1967 when Michael was just nine years old and they won, launching them on the road to Motown.
And in this video, the audience, you can see they are going wild, as Michael Jackson joined James Brown on stage at the Apollo. That was back in 1983.
MALVEAUX: And Jackson returned to the Apollo in 2002 at the invitation of President Bill Clinton, performing at a fund-raiser for the Democratic National Committee that was held at the Apollo.
Well, let's bring in Democratic strategist Donna Brazile and Republican strategist Ed Rollins to talk about really what the Apollo meant to Michael Jackson, the Jackson family. You guys cannot see me, but I'm holding up here the greatest hits, Jackson 5, 1971, an album that I had from my childhood -- not a scratch on it. I've managed to play a couple of songs from this album over the weekend in tribute.
I want to start off with you, Donna. I know you've got a lot of albums and records, yourself, you showed it to the SIT ROOM earlier in the week. What does the Apollo mean to the Jackson family?
DONNA BRAZILE, CNN POLITICAL CONTRIBUTOR: Well, the Apollo Theater is a very historic landmark, not just for Michael Jackson and his family, but for many folks who launched their careers, their musical careers there over the years. It is a very fitting place to hold a tribute today for Michael Jackson.
And you know, like many of us, this has been a journey down memory lane, going back throughout childhood. Of replaying those songs, re-saying them and of course, trying to make those same moves, as many of you can imagine, its real hard to do the Michael Jackson dance these days, but it feels good to at a least try.
MALVEAUX: And Ed, I don't know if you've Michael Jackson moves, but I know you've got a story, because you actually got a chance to meet him in the Reagan White House. Tell us about that. ED ROLLINS, CNN POLITICAL CONTRIBUTOR: I certainly don't have the Michael Jackson moves, but I loved him, as an artist. And I was privileged to know him several times (ph). He came to the White House in 1984, May of 1984.
And the administration had an anti-drunk driving program aimed at teenagers and he allowed us to use "Beat It," his great, great song. And you have to remember at this point in time, "Thriller" came out like '82, I think, '83. CNN was about three years old, MTV was at its infancy, he was the first African-American artist to ever appear on MTV, came to the White House.
Lots of people come to the White House. Nobody was ever more popular and everybody in the world wanted to bring their kids, their friends. I mean, I think there were 5,000 people that somehow got over the fence. He was very shy. He was very, very courteous. And it was an extraordinary day.
He then invited a bunch of us from the White House to come to his concert at RFK and it was the greatest show I have ever seen in my life. That man -- he was 25 years old -- he could do things with his body and his legs and his voice that I have never seen any artist ever do. And he is a great, great loss and he was a great contributor to music and to the country.
MALVEAUX: And Ed, you went to that concert? Can you tell us a little bit about it?
ROLLINS: I went to that concert, I was 41 years old. I was out there with all the kids and I was an old man rocking and rolling and had a fabulous time. I was running the President's campaign, so I had to be careful, it couldn't be too rowdy. But I was as rowdy as I could be at 40.
MALVEAUX: Did Reagan ever tell you -- did he ever talk to you about his impressions of Michael Jackson?
ROLLINS: He was very interested -- Reagan obviously loved entertainment and entertainers and so one of the young men that worked for me, Morgan Mason, who was the son of James and Pamela Mason, James Mason the movie actor, had actually basically worked on the tour when he left the White House.
And so there was a lot of conversations and lots of -- there are other times that the President had met him, but that was his occasion there. I think we all had great admiration, he was young, he had such a talent and obviously, as Reagan said to me, he said, "I saw Fred Astaire. No one could dance like Fred Astaire until I saw this young man." And you know that's -- I don't think anybody has ever danced like him. Nobody ever will again.
MALVEAUX: All right, thank you so much, both of you, Ed Rollins and Donna Brazile. Thanks again.
BRAZILE: Thank you.
ROLLINS: Thank you.
MALVEAUX: Well, it may have been Michael Jackson's best investment ever. So how much are the rights to hundreds of songs by the Beatles really worth now?
And President Obama; sending a blunt message to Iraqis as they mark a milestone.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Thank you. Thank you everybody.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MALVEAUX: Michael Jackson's single most valuable asset may be the rights he owns to hundreds of Beatles' songs. CNN's Mary Snow is working that story for us. And Mary, obviously, it's worth quite a lot. What are you finding out about that?
MARY SNOW: Well, Suzanne, Michael Jackson is reported to have left behind hundreds of millions in debt. He also has rights to what is considered a cash cow.
SNOW (voice-over): One of Michael Jackson's prized assets: his ownership rights to a catalog, including more than 200 Beatle is songs. Ryan Schinman, who owns an entertainment company that partners musicians and celebrities for ads, estimates the catalog is worth about $1.5 billion.
RYAN SCHINMAN, PLATINUM FIVE ENTERTAINMENT: It is valuable enough that he has been able to borrow against it all of these years. He has been able, you know to go to the banks, to go to different people because they realize how valuable it is.
SNOW: Jackson owns half, the other half is owned by Sony and a joint venture called Sony/ATV. The company declined comment on the future of the song catalog that came about after an aggressive move Jackson made in 1985.
He outbid Paul McCartney to the rights to roughly 250 Beatles songs, causing a rift between Jackson and McCartney who collaborated on hits like "Say, Say, Say."
In 2006, McCartney was quoted as saying, you know what doesn't feel very good is going on tour and paying to sing all my songs. Every time I sing "Hey Jude," I've got to pay someone.
After Jackson's death, McCartney put aside differences, writing on his Web site, "I feel privileged to have hung out and worked with Michael. He was a massively talented boy-man with a gentle soul." Reps say McCartney has been unavailable to comment on what might happen to the Beatles catalog. One state attorney says there are a number of possibilities but it all depends on the kind of contract that Jackson had with his business partner.
RENEE GABBARD, PAUL HASTINGS JANOFSKY & WALKER: Certain partnerships have exit clauses. If a partner dies, then perhaps the other partner could buy the deceased partner out. Other partnership contracts are completely silent as to what happens if a partner dies.
SNOW: Now another attorney we spoke with says one big unknown is how much Jackson owes Sony and what impact that has had on his stake. Then, of course, the other big question is the debt Jackson left behind overall and how that affects his estate -- Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: Ok. Thank you, Mary.
Iran warns protesters off the streets but what is the fate of those who were arrested during the height of the angry Iranian demonstrations? We are going to check in with our Iran Desk.
Also, Jack Cafferty's question of the hour: how much will recent Republican sex scandals affect upcoming races? Jack will read your e- mails. You're in the SITUATION ROOM.
MALVEAUX: A stern warning from Iranian leaders: they told the opposition today that no more protests will be tolerated now that the reelection of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been validated. As once heated and dangerous protests begin to diminish under the government crackdown, there are questions now being raised about those who were arrested and are still missing.
CNN's Reza Sayah is manning our Iran Desk. And Reza, what are you hearing about those people? What is their state? What's their fate now?
REZA SAYAH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Suzanne, we're not hearing much and that's the problem. These people have been detained. Nobody knows where they are and the government isn't saying anything.
What we've essentially seen in the past two and a half weeks in Iran is two presidential candidates and hundreds of thousands of people, maybe millions of people, dispute these elections and the government has systematically responded by crushing dissent in the opposition.
Obviously, we've seen countless people being brutally beaten up on the streets and according to human rights group, Amnesty International, at least a thousand people have been detained by the government, many of them political activists and journalists and there's no indication if they're getting due process because nobody really knows where they are. We spoke to a deputy director of Amnesty International a little while ago. Here's what she had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HASSIBA HADJ-SARRAOUI, DEP. DIR. MIDEAST/NORTH AFRICA PROGRAM: The authorities, again, are not coming forward with any information. And among the people who have been arrested, what is even more worrying is that nothing is known about these people. We don't know whether they've disappeared. The fact is they've disappeared but families don't know their whereabouts.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SAYAH: Many of these individuals who've been detained have been accused by the Iranian government of working with foreign governments in trying to overthrow the regime. But the Iranian government has yet to offer any evidence. And what troubles human rights groups is this government, the regime in Iran, may not be held accountable, may not be questioned with any of these tactics used -- Suzanne.
MALVEAUX: And Reza, you're hearing more about that journalist from "Newsweek" magazine that has gone missing in Iran. What can you tell us about that?
SAYAH: Yes, that was Maziar Bahari, award-winning filmmaker and reporter for "Newsweek." The last time anybody saw him was on June 21st, about nine days ago. But according to a state-run news agency in Iran, he's come out today in front of reporters and made a purported confession that indeed he is working for foreign governments.
But human rights groups totally dismiss what the government claims to be a confession. But this is what they claim Maziar Bahari has said. "The activities of Western reporters, in the information gathering and espionage become undeniable and the possibility exists that Westerners would hire spies from among these reporters."
Again, we reiterate and emphasize that Amnesty International and human rights groups totally dismiss these types of confessions. They say this is exactly the type of strategy the Iranian government is using to create a restrictive atmosphere.
MALVEAUX: Ok. Reza thank you so much for monitoring all the developments on the Iran Desk.
A long-awaited decision at a contested Senate race, Al Franken is now the junior senator from Minnesota. What does it mean for Republicans on Capitol Hill?
Plus, eyewitnesses to Michael Jackson's final days are now speaking out. But some are at odds over what conditions the singer was really in.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) MALVEAUX: Here is a look at the hot shots coming in from our friends at the Associated Press; pictures likely to be in your newspaper tomorrow.
In Argentina, people wear face masks to prevent the swine flu as the health minister resigns.
In Italy, two women sit next to a burned door after a freight train derailed and exploded.
In Belgrade, a firefighter walks past a car stuck in flood water following heavy rain.
In Canada, a newborn baby red panda cub makes its debut to the media.
That's this hour's hot shots; pictures worth a thousand words.
Time now to check back in with Jack Cafferty and Jack, what are you following?
CAFFERTY: The question this hour is: How much will recent Republicans sex scandals affect upcoming races?
Lou writes: "Maybe it will help the GOP in the long run. Somewhere along the line, they started thinking they were the morality police for America. They can't claim that title anymore. If they are smart, they will go back to what Republicans used to stand for, a party of smaller government and fiscal responsibility. That's a party I could come back to."
Michael in Fort Hood, Texas says: "I think voters are upset with the hypocrisy and arrogance of the GOP which vilified President Clinton and others for their moral failings but has refused to can acknowledge the shortcomings within its own family. The GOP has for years preached one message from the pulpit but lived another outside it. That will be their undoing."
Jim writes: "I think the Republicans will do just fine. With the President we have, the Democrats will cut their own throats. It's just a matter of time."
T.G. in the Virgin Islands: "As far as the upcoming elections are is concerned, the Republican Party is done. The only way they can rebrand themselves is to throw out the label of being conservatives who represent families."
Bert says: "It seems difficult to read how the affairs of these politicians will affect the people and election results. When Clinton's scandal hit the news, many wanted to kill him. Then he became the highest paid, most sought-after speaker for years. It seems like affairs go with the business; politicians either get amnesty or America loves drama. You figure it out."
Lisa in Alabama writes: "Sex scandals may be the best thing to happen to the Republican Party. Takes our mind off the fact they wasted the last eight years they were in power."
And Shelby in Orlando: Florida, "Memory is selective. Partisan loyalty is strong. The sex scandals will be forgotten in the upcoming elections."
If you didn't see your e-mail here, it is because we didn't use it. You can go to my blog at cnn.com/caffertyfile -- seems obvious to me, Suzanne -- and look for yours there. I hear you giggling.
MALVEAUX: Maybe next time around, you know. We will use it next time around.
CAFFERTY: You just -- have to hang in and keep hoping.
MALVEAUX: Thanks, Jack.
Happening now, Michael Jackson's will discovered. Will another one turn up as the investigation of his death continues? We are following all of the breaking news at this hour.
The tributes to Jackson, they are just beginning. Fans crowd into the famous Apollo Theater to celebrate the King of Pop's life and music.
We have new information about memorials in the days ahead.
New violence mars a cause for celebration in Iraq. U.S. troops complete their pullback from key cities and towns. Why is their commander sounding so frustrated?
Welcome to our viewers in the United States and around the world. Wolf Blitzer is off. I am Suzanne Malveaux. You are in THE SITUATION ROOM.
Huge crowds of adoring fans remembering Michael Jackson in New York at this very hour; the singer's legacy and his wealth may only be growing after his death. We have a brand new accounting of Jackson's finances. The Associated Press says it obtained documents showing that Jackson claimed a net worth of $236 million in late March of 2007.