Return to Transcripts main page


Penn State Scandal; Interview with Iran's Mohammad Javan Larijani

Aired November 16, 2011 - 21:00   ET


PIERS MORGAN, HOST: Tonight -- breaking news on the money trail. How did Jerry Sandusky's charity keep raising big bucks while rumors swirled about the Penn State sex scandal? And just how strong is the case against him? I'll ask someone who prosecuted the most notorious sex crimes in Manhattan.

Plus, should the world be worried about Iran's nukes? One of the country's top leaders talk about their nuclear program.

And is this any way to win a presidential election?


JON HUNTSMAN (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I don't care what the rest of the country thinks or feels. That's not important. I do care what the people of New Hampshire feel and think.


MORGAN: Is Jon Huntsman just too honest for his own good? Or perhaps he's to moderate? And can a man whose daughters do this in a campaign ad really make it to the White House?

Tonight, I'll ask candidate Jon huntsman and the girls who may will be his secret weapon.



MORGAN: Good evening.

We start with breaking news in the Penn State sex scandal. Now, the university police, no local police, have any record of a report filed by assistant coach Mike McQueary. In an e-mail, McQueary reportedly said he talked with police about an alleged sexual assault by Jerry Sandusky.

Meanwhile, New York's Fresh Air Fund, the charity that places inner city children with host families for summer vacations now says the Sandusky family may have hosted up to six children far back to the '70s. The charity informs authorities in Pennsylvania and New York.

And a new judge has been assigned to Jerry Sandusky's preliminary hearing scheduled for December 7th. The original judge had ties to Sandusky's Second Mile charity.

And now Second Mile charity is the center of controversy tonight. The question: how did Jerry Sandusky keep raising money despite all the rumors about his involvement in a sex scandal?

One business donated $50,000 to Sandusky's charity last year. It's the Family Clothesline. And Tracy Bell is the store coordinator.

Tracy Bell, obviously, deeply concerning course of events in the last few days. You are one of the businesses that donated money to this charity. How do you feel?

TRACY BELL, STORE COORDINATOR, THE FAMILY CLOTHESLINE: We were blindsided by everything that has happened past week and a half.

MORGAN: I mean, what rumors had you heard prior to this week?

BELL: We officially had heard some -- just a little gossip around town, some community, you know, gossip, as every community has. But we had heard that there were some allegations going on, some investigation going on, as early as this summer.

MORGAN: Tracy, what I think strikes everybody as kind of incomprehensible is why, with all these rumors swirling, so many people hearing about what may have been going on, some people hearing about it for years, that nobody went to the police. Why do you think that was?

BELL: I'm not for sure. I know for a fact that my employer had confronted the Second Mile and asked about the allegations and the rumors that were going on. And he was told by the Second Mile organization that he was not under investigation, that the rumors were untrue. And so, he just kind of said, OK, and went on. And we continued to support the Second Mile.

MORGAN: And when did that happen?

BELL: That was this summer, this past summer, 2011, the golf tournament raise -- the fund-raiser that they have.

MORGAN: So, one of your employees made a formal approach to the Second Mile charity and was reassured there was nothing in these rumors about Jerry Sandusky. Is that right?

BELL: Yes.

MORGAN: Who was that, from the Second Mile charity?

BELL: I'm not at liberty to say.

MORGAN: But you know who it was.

BELL: My employer does.

MORGAN: Right. Do you now believe that at the time you were told there was nothing to worry about that actually they knew that the charity was well aware of what was going on?

BELL: I believe, according to the media and according to the grand jury, it says that in 2008, the Second Mile put him, you know, he stepped down and he was not allowed to be involved in the activities with children.

MORGAN: It's pretty outrageous, isn't it? You've given $50,000 to a charity which is very, very best severely tainted and may turn out to be harboring a sex monster. Let's not beat about the bush here.

What would you do about this, if anything?

BELL: We are hoping to -- in the community to recover, we are hoping to find someone that will step up and be a leader and, you know, help our community.

The main reason why we did donate to the Second Mile was because it was going to help kids in our community and in the surrounding communities.

MORGAN: I mean, the terrible irony, of course, is if these allegations are proven to be true, then far from helping kids, one of the key people involved in the charity was abusing them on an industrial scale for years.

BELL: Yes. That's -- it is heart-wrenching that this has become the outcome of this.

MORGAN: Tracy, I mean, you live in the community, not far from Penn State University.

BELL: Yes.

MORGAN: You've had students come into your store and discuss all this with you.

I mean, what is the mood? We saw that uncomfortable night when Joe Paterno was first suspended, when students turned out in his support. I think that was very ill-conceived.

What would you describe the current mood of the students as?

BELL: We're looking for someone in our community to step up and be a leader. Right now the university doesn't have a permanent president are. We don't have a permanent A.D. We don't have a permanent football coach. So, right now, we're just looking at somebody to step up and be a leader.

MORGAN: Tracy Bell, thank you very much.

BELL: Thank you, and I would like to say that we are donating $5 for every t-shirt we buy to the, the foundation. It is there, they are directly helping the kids that were in the recovery process, are in the recovery process for the kids that were allegedly abused by Jerry Sandusky. MORGAN: OK. Thank you very much indeed.

The biggest question in the Penn State sex abuse scandal may be, how strong is the case against Jerry Sandusky legally.

Joining me now is Lisa Friel. She was the chief of the sex crimes unit in the Manhattan district attorney's office. She's now a vice president at T&M Protections Resources. She's handling sexual misconduct, consulting and investigations.

Let me ask you, Lisa -- I mean, everybody is kind of assuming guilty here on the part of Jerry Sandusky. From a legal perspective, I would imagine that's a dangerous position to be adopted right now, isn't it?

LISA FRIEL, FMR. CHIEF, MANHATTAN D.A.'S SEX CRIMES UNIT : Well, I think the prosecutor's office is definitely looking at all of the evidence. I think if you look at what you have here, you have multiple victims over a long period of time, many of whom did not know each other. That makes for a stronger case.

You have adult eyewitnesses to some of these acts. That makes for a very strong case.

You have various corroborating evidence I've read about other adults who saw things that corroborated some of these children's parents.

So, as these cases go, it's a fairly strong case for the prosecution.

MORGAN: I want to play you a clip from the Bob Costas interview with Jerry Sandusky from yesterday. Let's listen to a bit of this.


BOB COSTAS, NBC NEWS: Are you a pedophile?


COSTAS: Are you sexually attracted to young boys, to underage boys?

SANDUSKY: Am I sexually to underage boys?


SANDUSKY: Sexually attracted? No. I enjoy young people. I love to be around them. I -- but, no, I'm not sexually attracted to young boys.


MORGAN: I mean, it took him 17 seconds to say no to a fairly obvious question. How ill-advised was that interview, do you think? FRIEL: Well, I'll say this, that it's highly unusual for a defense attorney to let his client be interviewed in that fashion, and for exactly the reason we just saw. His words are going to be used against him in court. Whether he takes the stand or not, the prosecution is entitled to play that tape in court. If he takes the stand, they'll cross-examine him with it.

And I think everybody was struck by how long it took him to answer that, repeating the question back, saying again sexually attracted, and then finally going on in an answer that meandered around for a while. I think in hindsight, it was a -- not a great decision on his lawyer's part and I think it's going to hurt him at the trial.

MORGAN: We're getting everyone piling in on Sandusky now. We had Sarah Palin leading a charge saying hang him from the highest tree, and saying she would hold the rope and so on.

Is that -- is that unhelpful to the legal process, having him convicted in the court of popular opinion?

FRIEL: Well, I think that our system is innocent until proven. The public is entitled to judge from the evidence that they're hearing from the grand jury report and the other evidence that they hear. I don't know that it's helpful to have people at that level to convict him before he's had his trial.

But, as we started out saying, this is a pretty strong case for the prosecution.

MORGAN: It is. And it's a sickening case in many cases. There are obviously other people who have been caught up in this, most famous of all, Joe Paterno, a legendary sports coach.

What is your view of had his legal position here, in terms of potentially being involved in a cover-up from all that you've seen and read and heard?

FRIEL: Well, I think -- I'm not really prepared to discuss whether I think he was involved in a cover-up. I think that remains to be seen. I think that the Penn State board of trustees is clearly taking this very seriously, that they acted swiftly with some of the decisions they've already made. They've set up a committee to investigate this.

And I think until all of the facts are out with who knew what and who said what to whom, I don't think it's really appropriate to start saying who should be charged and who should be guilty of a cover-up.

MORGAN: I mean, it's raised the whole specter of priorities, hasn't it? And sense of, did commercial greed, did the striving for success on a football field override basic common ethics and moral decency here.

FRIEL: Well, that will definitely be one of the questions that the board of trustees' investigation will seek to answer, as they question everybody involved and find out who knew what and who told what to whom. And then the next question they're going to ask them is why? Why did you turn this over and not follow up on it? Why didn't you call the police yourself?

Why when you heard that it didn't get reported to the police you didn't do something? There are a lot of questions that remain to get answered by the board of trustees' investigation. And it remains to be seen why exactly various people didn't do what we are all looking at now and think they should have done.

MORGAN: I'm already seeing as a result of the Jerry Sandusky interview people coming forward, we saw one on Anderson's show earlier. Families now coming forward using that as, not an excuse, but a reason now to go after him legally, because they were so outraged by what he said. So in terms of a back firing strategy, about as bad as it gets, I would have thought.

FRIEL: Well, if that's true and that's motivated some of the victims to come forward, then, obviously, it backfired more than just his words being used against him.

But anything that empowers a victim to come forward is always a good thing, so the prosecutor that I used to be for so long is happy to hear that. I hadn't heard that before.

MORGAN: And from all of your experience in these kind of cases, when you heard Jerry Sandusky talking, what did your gut feel tell you about the kind of language that he was using and his behavioral pattern?

FRIEL: Well, as we mentioned before, the fact that it took him a while to answer that one question, the way he meandered around some other questions, his referring to horsing around and things like that -- it didn't strike me as a very good defensive posture -- let's put it that way, coming from a lawyer.

And, if all the facts that we've heard both in the grand jury report and we've seen in the media are true, he fits the profile of a classic pedophile. From who he chose as his victims, it's fairly classic to choose victims who have issues and the whole Second Mile foundation was said up to help young kids who had issues, who came from dysfunctional families. So, the victim population is classic.

The behavior that I've read that he engaged in, both in the report and otherwise, the starting with innocuous kind of touching and moving from there, that's classic pedophile behavior. Buying them gifts, buying them with things that they can't otherwise afford, taking them to all of these games, creating a life for them that these poor kids just could never have lived without him doing that. And then moving ahead from there to taking advantage of them, if all of that is true, that's classic pedophile behavior.

MORGAN: And absolutely horrific. Lisa Friel, thank you very much indeed.

FRIEL: You're welcome. MORGAN: Coming up, the nuclear threat from Iran, I'll ask one of the country's top politicians, are they making nuclear weapons?


MORGAN: Our big international story is President Ahmadinejad and Iran's nuclear program. Israel President Shimon Peres made news right here on Monday night when he called on the world to unit to stop Iran's nuclear program. We promised to give time to the other side.

So, joining me now is Mohammad Javan Larijani, executive general of Iran's Human Rights Council and top adviser to Iran's supreme leader.

Welcome, Dr. Larijani.

I had Shimon Peres on the show on Monday night. It was pretty scathing about Iran. I read something what he said.

He said, "The only country that threatens to destroy another country openly is Iran. They hang people. They arrest opposition.

They shoot around. They spread arms. They encourage every center of terror all over the world. Iran is a danger."

And he also said that Iran is actively seeking to make a nuclear weapon that they can potentially use against Israel.

What is your reaction to that?

MOHAMMAD JAVAN LARIJANI, IRAN'S HIGH COUNCIL FOR HUMAN RIGHTS: While this kind of allegation is quite interesting from a person who is from a country that already possess nuclear weapons and is a renegade country in the eye of NPT. It is good for Israel to look at the dismal record of atrocities committing to Palestinian for over 60 years.

Iran's nuclear program is fully paced for completely and I'm sure I do not have the slightest doubt the United States and other countries, they know that Iran's nuclear program is completely peaceful and it is a matter of pride for us. It's a great achievement for Iran that we have this capability.

MORGAN: If as you say, it's all completely peaceful and above- board, why don't you just let everybody come have a look and inspect them in the peace and tranquility that you talk of?

LARIJANI: Well, the cameras of IAEA are 24 hours working over there. Numerous inspectors are coming from the agency to Iran. There is no shortage of visiting Iran.

It seems that there is strong will that this circle of pressure in Iran should be kept for political purposes. But in reality as the merit of the case is concerned, Iran's capability is a matter of pride. It is nonmilitary. It is for peaceful use. And Iran is the only country in the Middle East which possessed nuclear power plant and is capable of this sophisticated technology of producing fuel. And we are investing for R&D in this area to get to the edge of science and technology, and we are ready to share it under the NPT umbrella with all countries around us, for neighboring countries as important mean of cooperation, also for economical gains as well.

MORGAN: I suppose the big problem that you have is that you have a president who has gone on the record as saying he doesn't believe in the Holocaust and he would like to eradicate Israel off the face of the earth.

So, when you couple those statements from your political leader with the fact that you are embracing nuclear power, it's hardly surprising that people are so fearful, is it? Certainly in Israel.

LARIJANI: Well, if a person doesn't believe in Holocaust, we cannot push him to believe it. It's up to him to believe it or not. But the idea that --

MORGAN: Do you believe in it?

LARIJANI: Holocaust is a historical matter. While it is a professional issue whether it happens, how much it happens, how long it happens, what was the depth and all these sides.

But I think it's quite irrational that people should be punished if they have the slightest doubt about that. It's unprecedented in the modern time to hold the belief should be so much pursuit by international community.

But anyhow, I think we -- Iran's policy is not to eradicate any people from the earth. What we say that millions of Palestinians should not be deprived from the basic rights. It doesn't make sense that the people coming from Manhattan, New York, and other places of the world, they are considered first citizen of this land, Palestine, but indigenous people who are born over there are kicked out of that place and living in tent outside. This is the issue.

So, the problem is not creating such a Holocaust again on that land.

Our view is that, why not like centuries Muslims, Christians and Jews could live together in such beautiful piece of land which is called Palestine?

MORGAN: Do you feel threatened in Iran in the sense that most world leaders now are being openly hostile towards Iran, whether it's President Sarkozy, President Obama, President Medvedev -- I mean, everyone is cueing up to say you are a dangerous country. They are fearful of developing nuclear power to use as weapons.

When you have all the leaders cueing up, I would think the obvious thing would be to defend yourselves. So, the kind of obvious question to me, is if you're not developing nuclear weapons, which you are saying other countries have, Israel to Pakistan and certainly America, many other countries have nuclear weapons, why wouldn't Iran want to have a nuclear weapon to defend itself?

LARIJANI: Well, there are two reasons. Number one, there is a fatwa from the leader Ayatollah Khamenei that it is against Islamic teaching to produce and use mass killing weapons, mass destructive weapons. So, this is a very strong ban on production of that inside the country.

Secondly, nuclear weapon does not add to our capability. It is more liability than said. Already we possess a very strong defensive muscle, which is deterrent enough for any eminent threat. And this is the cornerstone of our defense.

We think we are very much capable of defending ourselves with the weaponry that we have. And we don't need nuclear weapons.

Pakistan possesses that, they're no more secure than us. Even Israel is no more secure than us.

Iran is much more secure than all these persons in the Middle East without having a nuclear weapon, and this is a very great achievement.

MORGAN: A number of the Republican candidates for the presidency in America have stated they're prepared to go to war with Iran. How do you view military action against you?

LARIJANI: Well, I mean, before assessing these claims on the military and defense and security basis, I think this is a good distraction from the basic problems in the United States. Solving the economical issue seems very difficult -- so going from that and shifting the attention to Iran is much more easy.

So in my view it is a very prudent gain in the sense of political competition rather than the merit of the issue. But we in Iran consider threats seriously, but this does not mean that we should be disturbed. We're used to the language of threats for three decades. It's not just yesterday or tomorrow which may come.

So we assess these claims rigorously but we are not disturbed. We are very much confident people and we take the issue with patience.

MORGAN: Dr. Larijani, thank you very much.

LARIJANI: Thank you very much.

MORGAN: Coming up, Jon Huntsman, he's the GOP candidate with the most foreign policy experience, what does he think about what I've just been discussing with Dr. Larijani?


MORGAN: Jon Huntsman was President Obama's ambassador to China. He's also the GOP presidential candidate with arguably the most foreign policy experience. And he joins me now. Jon Huntsman, before we get stuck into the GOP race, I just interviewed Dr. Larijani there, talking about Iran's nuclear program. As far as he's concerned, all very, very peaceful. Nothing to worry about. What was your reaction?

JON HUNTSMAN (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Total and complete nonsense, Piers. He's a first-rate propagandist. Whether it's the IAEA reports, whether it's intelligence estimates, whether it's what people who are knowledgeable and in the know have to say about Iran's aspirations, but moreover when with you couple their aspirations with the kind of language and the threats that they have used in the region, it makes for a very dangerous and incendiary combination.

So when you stop to consider that they've got thousands of centrifuges that are spinning, out of which they're going to at some point have highly enriched product. And then beyond that, at some point, they're going to have enough fissile material for a weapon. That's going to change the balance of power and the dynamics in the region.

So we're going to have a choice in this country at some point. And that is, can you live with a nuclear Iran? And if you can live with a nuclear Iran, I think the proliferation implications are very dangerous, if not unsustainable in the region.

That is to say that Saudi Arabia will likely acquire a weapon, probably Turkey, maybe Egypt, even though we don't know who is in charge there at the moment. So the proliferation concerns are very real. And I'm not sure they're sustainable in the Middle East.

So then you have to say, if you can't live with a nuclear Iran, then you've got to keep all options on the table. And I think that's kind of where we're headed realistically.

MORGAN: I mean, the only option, if that is the case, is surely some kind of military intervention. The question then becomes, what kind? Obviously we've seen boots on the ground in Iraq. That is deemed by many to have been pretty unsuccessful in the way it was implemented, and extremely costly both to American lives and indeed Iraqi lives, but also financially, at a time -- I don't think America could afford it now.

Then you have the Libyan way in getting rid of Gadhafi, which was very different, which was a kind of backdoor policy, behind the French and English and so on. What is the right way to deal with Iran, if they're going to flagrantly ignore any form of international community opinion on this?

HUNTSMAN: Well, I think that's exactly what's going on. You can layer sanction upon sanction. And I think, in the end, the sanctions aren't going to much of an impact. Sanctions have already been taken to the U.N. Security Council. You could go for another round of sanctions. And that probably should be tried.

You can go after their state bank. You can sanction the elite. You can sanction those traveling in and out. You can tighten the nooses in ways that will make life a lot more difficult from an economic standpoint.

But my sense is their ultimate aspiration is to become a nuclear power, in which case sanctions probably aren't going to get you there. That means likely we're going to have a conversation with Israel at some point.

And as we kind of approach that point, you know, it's important for the United States to remind the world what it means to be a friend and ally of the United States. In the case of Israel, that hasn't been stated clearly in a long time.

I think giving some context to this whole discussion before it's to late is to remind the world what it means to be a friend and ally of the United States. There are certain security and military implications and commitments that go with that. There are certain economic relationships that go with that.

But I think that is a statement that needs to be made at some point, because the region can be a sea of change and uncertainty, as we're finding today. But there is one certain element and that is our relationship with Israel. I think it needs to be tight. I think we need to coordinate. And I think we need to make realistic assessments and appraisals of the situation.

MORGAN: When I hear you talk, Jon Huntsman, about foreign affairs in particular, it's always very impressive. You're smart about it. You're articulate. I even spoke to you once and you talked to me he in Mandarin from your time in China.

Then I see someone like Herman Cain, who is still doing pretty well in the polls, certainly doing better than you, actually saying today, after he stumbled about Libya -- he didn't appear to know what Libya was, let alone where it is. He said today, I'm not expected to know about foreign policy, which I thought was a breathtaking statement from a man who wants to be president.

Are you frustrated that you are still lagging in the polls when the credentials that you seem to offer at this very challenging time for America, particularly on the international stage, seem so much more impressive than many of your rivals?

HUNTSMAN: Well, we're still in the preseason, Piers. We're still in the preseason. We're in the primary phase. And that means there's a lot in the way of theatrics and show business that are merged into politics. We're still weeks and weeks away from when the people here in New Hampshire are going to turn out to the ballot box.

And when they stare down that ballot box, an interesting thing is going to take place. The drama and the theater of the preseason will be behind us. And they're going to have to ask themselves the fundamental question: who can actually perform the job of president of the United States? Who actually has the background, the temperament, the experience, the world view and the vision in order to get this country where it needs to be?

The Misery Index is up. Unemployment is up. Joblessness, our place in the world, the uncertainty surrounding where our economy goes. The hope and change that was campaigned on a few short years ago -- there's nothing to show for it. But I think beyond all of that, we've got a significant deficit in the area of trust.

And I think that is going to drive people, while they're at the ballot box, to really consider the trust element of politics. There's no trust left between the people of this country and our institutions of power, whether that's Congress, whether that's the executive branch, whether it's Wall Street, with banks that are too big to fail, when this president had an opportunity to address it on his watch.

So we have a deficit in economics. We have a deficit as it relates to trust. And people, when they stare down that ballot box, as they will do here in New Hampshire January 10th, all the drama and all the show business behind us, they're finally going to have to ask that fundamental question: who can do the job? Who's got the experience, the track record, the background, the ability to infuse a new level of trust into a system that desperately, desperately needs it?

In those conditions, Piers, I think we do well.

MORGAN: Let me jump in there. Because got to go to a break and also I'm a bit worried you're going to break the world record for mentioning New Hampshire in one segment. So I'm going to come back after the break and ask you why have you put all your eggs in one basket? And is it going to work?



HUNTSMAN: I don't care what the rest of the country thinks or feels. That's not important. I do care about what the people of New Hampshire feel.


MORGAN: GOP candidate Jon Huntsman in New Hampshire yesterday, in a statement that generated a bit of controversy. And he's back with me now. Jon Huntsman, to say you didn't care what the rest of America thought, pretty brave step to take as a presidential nominee potentially.

HUNTSMAN: Let me put it a little more artfully, Piers. That is to say, I don't care what the polls say in the rest of the country. I do care what people think in the rest of the country. I don't care what the polls say.

I do care about where the numbers are here in New Hampshire, and where they're headed. This is a state that is a level playing field for politics. I like that. I want to do the same thing for the American economy, for businesses big and small. I want to provide a level playing field, which we don't have today.

But it means you can come into New Hampshire without a whole lot of money. You can come into New Hampshire without a large organization. Carter did it. Clinton did it. Senators have done it. John McCain did it. Some have won the presidency. Others haven't. Many have come very, very close.

But the key here is you must earn people's vote. It can't be done through artificiality. It can't be done through parachuting in once or twice every month. You've got to be on the ground. You've got to earn it. You've got to appear in town hall meetings.

Tonight, Piers, we did our 101st public event here in New Hampshire. No one has worked this market nearly as hard as we have.

MORGAN: And yet --

HUNTSMAN: We're at the house parties.


MORGAN: Let me jump in, because it's an interesting point. You have done all these meetings. You have immersed yourself in New Hampshire. Yet the polls in New Hampshire -- let's focus on that for a moment -- show there's still a massive gap between you and Mitt Romney.

As things stand, he's going to walk it, isn't he?

HUNTSMAN: He has name recognition. That's only natural. He's been at it for many, many years. He's been running for president for a whole lot of years. He was governor of an adjoining state. Because you have name recognition, it doesn't mean you have a deep level of belief in who you are or how you might go on ultimately to beat Barack Obama.

So if you stop to consider that 89 percent of the people, based on the last poll -- 89 percent of the people in this state are undecided. So whatever numbers you look at have to do with a very small percentage of people who have actually made up their minds.

If you stop to think that 89 percent are still undecided, that's a whole lot of blue sky for a person like me. You can come into this state and you can articulate a message to people who want to know your heart and soul. They want to know that you are genuine, that you are authentic and that you've got what it takes to lead this country and to move it forward.

They're going to render a judgment on January 10th. And they're not going to coalesce around anybody, as is typically the case, until probably a week to ten days out. And then they're going to start coalescing around the candidates or the candidate who has put in the sweat equity, who's been here in the state, who's actually put forward the kinds of ideas that are believable and doable and tied to one's background.

So when I get to come in here and talk about the tax reform that I delivered to the people of the state of Utah, historic tax cuts, when I get to come in here and talk about the fact that I've lived overseas four times, three times a U.S. ambassador, and the ability we have to rebuild our manufacturing muscle, when they want to talk about education reform, where I was a governor who signed the second voucher bill in this entire nation for education, they like that.

And they gravitate. And the buzz factor is getting our name out more and more, as we spend more time in this state. I feel it. I sense it. And we're connecting with the folks.

MORGAN: Let's see how you're connecting with my next guests, because you know them quite well. They're your daughters, the Jon 2012 Girls, who are creating a bit of notoriety for them, for you, for the campaign. Let's see after the break how they're getting on.




UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We need you to get involved to make sure our next president is based on substance.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Check out our dad at and follow us on Twitter @Jon2012Girls.


MORGAN: A slightly unorthodox campaign video by the Jon 2012 girls, Mary Anne Huntsman, Abby Livingston, and Liddy Huntsman, daughters of presidential candidate Jon Huntsman.

Ladies, welcome. I can tell you you're already having a good effect here. I'm reading a Tweet that's just come in to me that says, "Thanks, Piers Morgan. Hubby just saw Huntsman's Angels and I lost a vote for Herman Cain."

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Oh, my goodness. We're doing what we can.

MORGAN: Let me turn to your father a moment. Jon, a rather unusual trio of campaign operatives here, who have been getting more and more publicity. Are they a force for good or catastrophe in your campaign?


HUNTSMAN: We'll have to let the historians deal with that one. I don't even want to hazard a guess. Here's a reality in my life, Piers. I give a major foreign policy speech on America's role in the world in the 21st century. I get five hits on Youtube.

The girls put up this corn ball video spoofing another candidate's video. They get half a million views within 24 hours. And I say the world isn't fair. But I'm beginning to understand how political communication works these days. . MORGAN: Let me turn to Mary Anne first. Mary Anne, I loved that video. I Tweeted to that effect. So I thought it was very, very entertaining. And I think you are potentially secret weapons for your father.

But tell me this, why is it that your father is not getting more support in the polls, do you think? What is it about him that isn't quite firing? And what can he do about it?

MARY ANNE HUNTSMAN, DAUGHTER OF JON HUNTSMAN: Well, he hasn't had a chance to have America see him yet. But you know, I think you can agree with me on this, Piers. I'm going to go out on a limb and say this. He is the only candidate that can give Barack Obama a run for his money. And we hope that America can see that eventually.

MORGAN: Liddy, let me bring you in. Tell me some qualities about your father we may not know. What is the secret Jon Huntsman like?

HUNTSMAN: Careful.

LIDDY HUNTSMAN, DAUGHTER OF JON HUNTSMAN: Well, he's very honest. I think that's rare to see today in the field. He goes with his gut. If you look, he doesn't pander. If you look at his record, it's very conservative. And I just think that he's a true leader. And I think people -- I think the American public is just starting to get to know him.

MORGAN: And Abby, one of the charges against your dad is that he's boring. Is he boring?

ABBY LIVINGSTON, DAUUGHTER OF JON HUNTSMAN: Not at all. Where do you think we get our humor from? From him, obviously.

MORGAN: Jon, three great defenses from your delightful daughters. But when it comes to New Hampshire, when it comes to this big vote, you're not just going to win just because you have three appealing daughters, are you? What is it about you that is going to turn this around?

You've put all of your chips, as I said, on this poll. You've got to win there. What is the one thing that is going to drive you past Mitt Romney?

HUNTSMAN: New Hampshire loves an underdog. They don't like to be told for whom to vote. They want the candidate to earn it based upon core beliefs and a based upon a message that is right for our nation at this time in history.

We're connecting on all fronts, Piers. And I have to tell you that we have gone from the margin of error -- I can no longer call ourselves a margin of error candidate in New Hampshire -- to moving upward. And you combine this Adlai Stevenson shoe leather work on the ground with the kind of ads that have been put up, and I say that we're going to be moving in a direction that will cause New Hampshire to do what it always does. And that's up end conventional wisdom. Hang on for the ride.

MORGAN: And Mary Anne, in terms of your father's fashion sense --

M. HUNTSMAN: Oh, boy.

MORGAN: Did you color coordinate his shirt and his hair tonight, or not?

MORGAN: I always do. And I will say, I think he got a lot of props for his tie at the last debate; and I actually bought him that tie.

MORGAN: Well, you've also said that the other -- on your Twitter, the three of you, you said that the other contestants -- the other candidates in that debate all had dodgy haircuts.

L. HUNTSMAN: Do you disagree?

MORGAN: I -- it wouldn't be for me to comment. But who had the worst haircut, in your opinion?

LIVINGSTON: We think our dad had the best haircut.


LIVINGSTON: It might have been the humidity in Michigan, but I think everyone must have gone to the same barber before the debate.

MORGAN: You three are very active on Twitter. And you're quite naughty on Twitter, aren't you. Jon, do you worry that your daughters are going to land you -- you're going to wake up one morning and all hell has broken loose on Twitter?

HUNTSMAN: Piers, I don't have a choice. I know it's going to happen at some point. All I've told them is give me a chance. Let me get out there. Let me get known before you completely destroy the campaign.

MORGAN: I'm reading one here. It say, "how does Romney know anything about China? He's only been there once. And that was for the Olympics. Panda Express doesn't count."

M. HUNTSMAN: How can you not laugh at that? We were just having some fun.

MORGAN: It is funny. But it's just not the conventional way of running campaigns, ladies.


LIVINGTSON: This is not a conventional election cycle.

MORGAN: You can say that again. But, Abby, who is controlling you three? I mean, does anybody from the campaign have a look at these Tweets? Or is it just whatever goes through your minds? LIVINGSTON: Look, we're really doing this for a very serious reason. We're doing this to introduce our dad to America. We're doing this to -- to really let people know who he is. And while we're being funny, we're also being very serious in what we're saying.

So I think the campaign trusts us. We know our dad. We know him better than anybody. So the last thing we want to do is hurt. At the end of the day, I think they trust what we're trying to do. And they know what we're only out there to really get his message out as best as we can.

MORGAN: Liddy, finally, are there more videos coming? Have you got any more shocking surprises for us?

L. HUNTSMAN: I guess you'll just have to wait and see. I don't know.

LIVINGSTON: You'll be the first to know, Piers. But there's always something up our sleeves.

MORGAN: Well, I think you're a breath of fresh air, I've got to say, to this campaign. And you certainly bring a bit of much need glamour. So I thank you Huntsman girls. And I thank you -- thank you, Jon Huntsman.

HUNTSMAN: Piers, you're the only where you can start with a discussion on nuclear weapons and end up with the haircuts of the candidates.

MORGAN: The perfect show. Huntsman clan, thank you all very much.


MORGAN: Coming up, a preview of my no holds barred interview with late night goddess Chelsea Handler.


MORGAN: Tomorrow night I'm bringing back one of my favorite guests so far, the demure and always lady like Chelsea Handler. Here is one of the many highlights of our last conversation.


MORGAN: What are you worth?


MORGAN: Yes, you do. I bet you're one of those people who knows exactly how much you're worth.

HANDLER: I don't know how much I'm worth. What is -- I am ruthless when it comes to business, but is your worth.

MORGAN: Then you know exactly what you're worth. HANDLER: I would never discuss that.


MORGAN: Well, I'm going to get it out of her tomorrow night. I'm told she's just signed a new $25 million contract. So that and many more Chelsea Handler secrets tomorrow night. That's all for us tonight. "AC 360" starts now.