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Insider Trading in Congress?; Ungodly Discipline

Aired December 1, 2011 - 22:00   ET


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening everyone. It's 10:00 p.m. here on the East Coast.

We begin tonight "Keeping Them Honest" with your elected representatives in Washington doing things that might land you in jail if you tried them yourself, but not, as you will see, if you're a member of Congress.

Hearings were held today on bills to stop what scholar Peter Schweizer calls legal legislative graft, what on the outside could be considered insider trading, shady real estate dealing, even bribery.

He wrote a book about it. "60 Minutes" did a stunning report on it.


STEVE KROFT, CBS: Why does Congress get a pass on this?

PETER SCHWEIZER, AUTHOR, "THROW THEM ALL OUT": It's really the way the rules have been defined and the people who make the rules are the political class in Washington and they have conveniently written them in such a way that they don't apply to themselves.

KROFT: The buying and selling of stock by corporate insiders who have access to nonpublic information that could affect the stock price can be a criminal offense. Just ask hedge fund manager Raj Rajaratnam, who recently got 11 years in prison for doing it.

But congressional lawmakers have no corporate responsibilities and have long been considered exempt from insider trading laws. Even though they have daily access to nonpublic information and plenty of opportunities to trade on it.

SCHWEIZER: We know that during the health care debate, people were trading health care stocks. We know that during the financial crisis of 2008, they were getting out of the market before the rest of America really knew what was going on.


COOPER: Steve Kroft from "60 Minutes" is going to join us in just a moment. But what was going on, according to "60 Minutes" was that GOP congressmen like Spencer Bachus of Alabama and fellow members of the House Financial Services Committee were getting dire top secret briefings on the banking crisis back in 2008 from Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson.

At the same time, according to "60 Minutes," Congressman Bachus started making stock bets that the market would go down. His office says he never trades on nonpublic information but the timing is certainly suspicious.

And it's a bipartisan story here. Take Democrat Nancy Pelosi, the former House speaker. In 2008 she took part in Visa -- credit card company's invitation only initial stock offering, buying 5,000 shares just as legislation that would have hurt credit card companies like Visa began its trip through the House. Legislation that incidentally failed that time. Ultimately, it passed through the Senate.

Steve Kroft asked her about that.


KROFT: I wanted to ask you why you and your husband back in March of 2008 accepted and participated in a very large IPO deal from Visa in a time that was major legislation affecting the credit card companies making its way through the -- through the House.

Did you consider that to be a conflict of interest?

REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA), HOUSE MINORITY LEADER: I don't know what your point is of your question. Is there some point that you want to make with that?

KROFT: Well, I guess what I'm asking is, do you think it's all right for a speaker to accept a very preferential favorable stock deal?

PELOSI: Well, we didn't.

KROFT: And that you -- you participated in the IPO. And at the time you were speaker of the House. You don't think it was a conflict of interest or have the appearance of a conflict of interest?

PELOSI: No. It was -- it only has appearance if you decide that you're going to have -- elaborate on a false premise. But it's not true and that's that.

KROFT: I don't understand what part is not true.

PELOSI: Yes, sir? That I would act upon an investment.


COOPER: House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi talking to "60 Minutes"' Steve Kroft.

CNN's Kate Bolduan caught up to the congresswoman today.




BOLDUAN: There's a hearing today in that Senate has to do with taking a look at a couple of bills to stop or prevent insider trading among members of Congress. This, of course, follows a report which you well know you were one target of this report having to do with that question.

Would you support such legislation to prevent insider trading amongst members of Congress?


BOLDUAN: Is it important to push it through?

PELOSI: I think it's important. And I think you have -- I don't think that -- I don't think that -- I -- I would hope that it's not as necessary as the whoop-de-do over it makes it seem. But I do think that we all disclose what we do and that's really important. And -- and everything that we do is a matter of public record. So it is in the public domain. So it's not so insider.


COOPER: "Whoop-de-do."

Right now the law only demands disclosure once a year. It may not even prohibit making the deals in the first place or even require lawmakers to put their stocks into a blind trust. And the "60 Minute" report details more than just eyebrow-raising stock deals. Former House speaker Dennis Hastert came into Congress worth a few hundred thousand dollars. He left a multimillionaire.

"60 Minutes" revealed the federal earmark he got, $207 million, to run a highway past property that he owned. Property he later sold and made $2 million on. Speaker Hastert is now a lobbyist. His office told "60 Minutes" the land was already rising in value before the earmark went through.

Five years ago Congressman Brian Baird, who joins us shortly as well, introduced a bill that would require lawmakers to disclose stock trades every 90 days and bar them from trading on nonpublic information. Guess what? It went three years before even getting a hearing. And here's what it looked like when the hearing finally happened.

See all those empty chairs? No one was interested. Listen carefully, you'll hear the sound of crickets chirping.

Lawmakers getting richer while their public approval shrinks into single digits in a recent poll. As we mentioned there were Senate hearings today on a pair of bills to address the issue. We're going to talk shortly to ethics watchdog Melanie Sloan, who testified.

First, though, my "60 Minutes" colleague Steve Kroft whose reporting prompted Congress to act. How big a problem is it? I mean I -- I was stunned when I saw your report initially.

KROFT: I was stunned when I first heard about it.

COOPER: You had no idea that members of Congress didn't have to abide by insider trading rules?

KROFT: No. No. And I -- just in response to Nancy Pelosi's comments about the whoop-dee-doo.

COOPER: Whoop-dee-doo.


KROFT: If you or I did went out and bought stock in a company that we were doing a story on or sold the stock, we'd get a call from the SEC probably within 48 hours.

COOPER: Right.

KROFT: And we'd be in danger of losing our jobs because both of our companies have ethic rules -- ethics rules that would prohibit us from doing that. But in Congress, nothing.

COOPER: And the idea that they could be inside hearings and hearing about, you know, dire financial information back in 2008 about the stock markets -- you know, this is going to tank in a few days, you know, this bubble is bursting, and to then short the market so that you will actually profit off the collapse is -- I mean that's just stunning.

KROFT: One of the most interesting examples I thought was that you can be, you know, on a health care committee, you can have -- learn in advance, months in advance, the certain drug is going to be disapproved for coverage or for Medicare.

COOPER: Which would have a devastating impact on that company.

KROFT: Devastating impact on the drug company and there's nothing to prohibit you from trading on that. In fact a number of members of Congress in health care committees did.

COOPER: And in your report, it was amazing, because you went around, you know, like sort of traipsing around Congress trying to get people -- ask people if they knew about this. If they knew about the stock act, the effort to prevent this from happening. And everyone is like, oh, no, never heard of it. Sounds like a great idea. Never heard of it.

KROFT: And now everybody is jumping on the bandwagon. I'm really glad to see. I mean this is a bill that couldn't -- didn't draw flies. Now it has 138 co-sponsors or something like that.

COOPER: Right.

KROFT: Everybody wants it now. But a few weeks ago -- and it's been -- the bill has been around for years. COOPER: The idea, too, of Congress members -- members of Congress doing shady land deals as well. You know buying land in an area where lo and behold they get an earmark for a highway that goes through that area or close to that area and their land is suddenly worth a lot more.

KROFT: Yes, it happens all the time. Judd Gregg from New Hampshire was involved in -- he got an earmark to buy an old Air Force base or was closed down. And he was involved in development around it and his brother was one of the people that was a major involvement in it.

And the Ethics Committee, I think, looked at it and said -- his defense was, look, as long as my constituents benefit from this earmark, then it's perfectly legal for me to do this. As long as somebody else benefits, doesn't matter. I can benefit, too.

COOPER: And when you were trying to get members of Congress to actually sit down for interviews --


COOPER: Speaker Boehner, Nancy Pelosi, nobody would do it?

KROFT: No. None of them even called us back. They had people call from their spokesman call and give us a -- you know a written statement.

COOPER: Right. And that's why you ended up at those press conferences asking in sort of public forums trying to get an answer.

KROFT: Yes, yes.

COOPER: How often -- I mean that's -- it's pretty remarkable that they're not -- I mean when you get a call from Steve Kroft of "60 Minutes," you would expect that phone call to be returned.

KROFT: We usually do.


COOPER: I want to bring in Melanie Sloan into the conversation. She's executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington. She testified in the Senate today.

Also I want to bring in retired Congressman Brian Baird who years ago tried to get the ethics bill -- the ball rolling without much luck.

Congressman, is this another example members of Congress playing by a different set of rules from everyone else?

BRIAN BAIRD (D), FORMER U.S. CONGRESSMAN: Well, I'm afraid it is. And when I tried to raise this with people, some thought it did apply, others said, you know, that would be inconvenient, the implication being that the kind of rules that apply to other people applied to us, that would be inconvenient.

Well, I don't agree with that logic, but it seemed to block the legislation from moving for far too long.

COOPER: Melanie, after you testified today, I mean did you get the sense that passing the Stock Act is a priority for Congress?

MELANIE SLOAN, CITIZENS FOR RESPONSIBILITY AND ETHICS IN WASHINGTON: I definitely got the sense it was a priority for Chairman Lieberman and ranking member Susan Collins. They said that they're going to aim to have a markup on this bill by December 15. But they recognized that they were some complications to it and it wasn't as simple as just passing the legislation they had in front of them.

So they need to work on it a little. But they had a bunch of securities experts who they're going to be talking to and they want to at least get it out of their committee by the end of the year.

COOPER: It's not just, Steve, members of Congress, their staffs, who could profit from this. You in the "60 Minutes" report also talked about something called political intelligence which -- again I have never even heard of. What is that?

KROFT: It is essentially, as Brian Baird, told us in the "60 Minutes" piece, a business model, successful business model in Washington that would be a criminal enterprise any place else. It involves lobbying firms and political intelligence firms usually with congressional former staffers and congressmen and senators on their staff going around, getting nonpublic information and then selling it to clients. Which we don't really know very much about the clients other than we know that some hedge funds are involved in it.

COOPER: So Congressman, how does that work? Basically, I mean, it's like intelligence operatives basically going around, talking to their former friends, what's the scuttlebutt about this bill or that bill?

BAIRD: Well, the key is, you know, if it's public information from a hearing, that's OK. But the real value comes from the nonpublic information and that's the intelligence part of it. You're trying to get information before the other guy does and again in the corporate world, if it's coming from inside the company and it's not public, it's illegal.

In Congress it's incredibly valuable and it's not clearly illegal. And that's how the political intel firms work. And they're not very happy with my efforts to try to say you've got to disclose your clients so that we can see who is trading on this information.

COOPER: Melanie, does the current bill address these political intelligence firms at all?

SLOAN: The current bill does address that. But that wasn't discussed at all at today's hearing and I think they may well put that question off to another day because it raises all sorts of other issues that they just haven't explored yet and they don't seem to be nearly as big a rush to deal with that as they are with insider trading things. And I think it's in large part, of course, because of the "60 Minutes" story but also because of the "Occupy Wall Street" movement and the incredibly low regard in which most Americans are holding Congress these days. Forty-six percent of Americans believe that Congress is corrupt.

COOPER: And Congressman, when you introduced the Stock Act and we showed the hearing there, you only had a handful of co-sponsors, had a really difficult time getting any hearings. Now, as Steve pointed out, the bill has over 100 co-sponsors and counting. You've got to feel pretty good about it. Do you feel vindicated?

BAIRD: Well, I won't until we actually solve the problem. And you know the fact that we have over 100 co-sponsors, we still need 435 co-sponsors. I think we ought to have every member of Congress saying, this is wrong and we ought to fix it. Whether or not they vote for this bill per se, they have got to recognize that holding members of Congress to a lower standard than we impose on the rest of the public is not going to fly politically or as good policy.

COOPER: I can't imagine, Steve, any member of Congress publicly disagreeing with this idea.

KROFT: I think it has to pass and I think everybody has to sign it, otherwise they're going to be vulnerable to these kinds of questions in November elections next year.

COOPER: Yes. We should call up every member of Congress and ask them where they stand on this issue and just get them on the record as we've done in other things. Maybe we'll do that.

Steve, appreciate it. Thanks very much. Great to have you here.

KROFT: Anderson, great to see you.

COOPER: Steve Kroft.

Melanie Sloan, thank you.

Congressman Brian Baird, appreciate your time, sir. Thank you.

Let us know what you think. We're on Facebook, Google+. Add us to your circles. You can follow me on Twitter @AndersonCooper, I will be tweeting tonight.

Up next: a pharmacy full of drugs being prescribed to young kids. We're not just talking Ritalin, two drugs, three drugs. We're talking five drug more combinations of mind-altering medicines. We've got the details from a stunning new report. A GAO report. And perspectives from our own doctor, 360 M.D. Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

Also later in "Crime & Punishment" tonight, "Ungodly Discipline," our series continues looking at the disciplining of kids in schools. A former assistant principal who now lobbies for corporal punishment in parochial schools is accused of paddling his former students. Those students say they will never forget it. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Whack, whack. I would never cry and the man hated that I wouldn't cry. This time he got me to cry. But the fist was -- I said this guy isn't going to stop.


COOPER: Our Gary Tuchman investigates ahead on the program.


COOPER: "Keeping Them Honest" now on kids and mind-altering drugs, not street drugs, psychiatric medications prescribed by doctors and being given in doses in combination that are in some cases mind- blowing to some of society's most vulnerable kids.

Antipsychotics, antidepressants, powerful tranquilizers and sedatives, all the familiar brands, Prozac, Ritalin, Zoloft, Ambien. With all the familiar side effects being given to kids, sometimes even to infants.

Now it's all been documented in a new report from the Government Accountability Office, the GAO, which looked at foster kids and other children on Medicaid in five states. What it found is that -- foster kids were anywhere from two to four times more likely to be prescribed psychotropic drugs. It found more than 20,000 kids in both groups taking more than the maximum recommended dosages. So higher dosages than recommended.

Seventeen hundred kids in both groups were taking five or more different drugs at the same time. Five mind-altering drugs or more at once. And according to the report, more than 4,000 infants were on psychotropic drugs. Kids a year old or younger being given drugs that doctors say no child should actually take.

The report points out that many of the foster kids do in fact have greater mental health needs because of what they have been through in life. Yet the report warns they're also potentially at higher risk for health problems, and -- quote -- "According to GAO's experts, no evidence support the concomitant use of five or more psychotropic drugs in adults or children."

Means taking them at the same time. Yet GAO investigators found thousands of kids in or out of foster care who are on such combinations.

And as ABC News found out when they reported on the problem, many of these drugs are nightmarishly hard to quit.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Get down. Come here, Ross.

(END VIDEO CLIP) COOPER: Those were kids going through withdrawal. The question is, are we overmedicating kids, in particular the most vulnerable of kids and if so, why?


COOPER: "Digging Deeper" now with 360 M.D. Sanjay Gupta, and Michael Piraino, CEO of the National Court Appointed Special Advocate Association.

Sanjay, the number of kids being medicated seems very high. In some cases kids were on five -- five or more drugs at one time and at levels exceeding FDA regulations. What do you make of it?

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know, first of all, there's not a lot of data or guidelines and using some of these medications in children that young. So it's striking just from that regard alone. I mean you're flying a little bit blind and then as you read, Anderson, a lot of people read that you know sometimes five or even more of these medications being used in the same child, it was pretty striking.

And I -- a lot of my colleagues and I were talking about this today that the concern of some of these foster children, you know, have been neglected, have been abused, may need some sort of therapy, but using these many medications, I think -- you know, I think was concerning for everybody.

Also the longer term effects on the brain. Something I'm very interested in. We just don't know. Because a lot of these medications, Anderson, are tested in adults first. A lot of the data in terms of safety comes out of adult data. So it's very hard to apply some of that to children. We do know that there can be some long-term effects on the brain. We do know some of these medications can cause weight gain which is significant weight gain.

We do know that some of these medications can double, even triple the risk of a child developing diabetes down the road. So you know, I think there's lots of reasons to be concerned.

One thing I will just tell you really quick, and here's what Michael says about this. We talk to other psychiatrists who say, look, even in the general population, we're seeing the study now. But even in the general population, non-medicated children, children who are not in foster care, the numbers if you really sat down and analyzed them would also likely be strikingly high.

COOPER: Michael, you say this is actually one of the biggest concerns that you're hearing from people working with foster kids. I mean, are kids in the system being given drugs that they don't need? Because that's what it certainly seems like in this GAO report.

MICHAEL PIRAINO, CEO, NATIONAL CASA ASSOCIATION: It really feels like that. Some of these numbers that you read are awful. But when you hear the stories, the suffering that kids are going through when they have five. But they're even more medications some kids have. There are kids with 12. And they describe being like zombies and the suffering they go through is just terrible. So we feel very strongly that this is a serious issue and it needs to be changed.

COOPER: I mean, I can understand, Michael, kids who are in the foster care system may be -- you know obviously they're dealing with issues that come from difficult backgrounds and therefore it would be understandable they might -- they have a higher incidence of needing medication.

But the combinations, the high numbers of combinations beyond what's actually effective, and that may even be counteractive, and also the age of some of these kids, I mean giving children under the age of 1 year old some of these medications, it's -- this is, as Sanjay was saying, uncharted territory.

PIRAINO: Yes, you can't -- I can't imagine giving infants these drugs. But on the other hand, we've also heard of toddlers, toddlers who have been placed in hospitals for behavior problems and then they're put on medications. And I'm not a physician, but I can't believe that we can't do better, we can't provide better care, better thoughtful diagnosis when we do need to use these drugs.

And this is -- to me, this is one of the big issues is, this is a system that is chronically short of time for kids. And if you're going to be using psychotropic medications with them, you have got to do it carefully.

COOPER: Right. Sanjay, the GAO reporter are saying that there's no evidence really about the efficacy of using five or more of these drugs.

GUPTA: Right. And that's part of the problem. I mean that data -- and we looked pretty hard for it today in terms of using that many drugs isn't readily available in adults even in whom these drugs have been tested. Even less so in children.

And you mentioned, Anderson, about children under the age of one. I mean that completely blew me away when I read that. I literally read that line several times.

COOPER: Yes -- I think it was 4,000 infants under the age of one are being given medication.

GUPTA: I don't even know how they're diagnosing a problem. So we've made calls on this trying to figure out exactly what was going on. And as you might expect, if you try and dig a little deeper into this is that these are -- a child might be getting medications because they're colicky, because they're crying, because they're -- you know, they're difficult to care for in some way in that setting.

I have some of the numbers here in front of me, Anderson. A lot of the medications being prescribed in children that young were sort of antihistamine type medications. They're classified as anti-anxiety medications but they're antihistamines like Benadryl, for example, which aren't recommended in children under 2 in the first place. But they give this medication to try and put these kids to sleep. And they're doing it in the high numbers that you just mentioned.

COOPER: So, Michael, what needs to be done to fix the situation?

PIRAINO: I think at least four things have to be done. One is, in every state there ought to be court review of the use of psychotropic medications on every one of these kids. The other one is there has to be informed consent for young people who are capable of giving it and that is not consistent across the states.

We also need more mental health care providers, child psychiatrists and psychologists, and I would propose we look at loan modifications and loan forgiveness for them if they're willing to treat foster youth.

And then every one of these kids needs an advocate. We really need to make sure that somebody is watching. If things aren't going right, somebody raises the alarm and says something is wrong for every one of these kids. We need that.

COOPER: Right. It sounds like all good advice.

Michael Piraino, appreciate your time and your expertise. Sanjay as well. Thank you.

GUPTA: Thanks, Anderson.

COOPER: It's pretty just shocking report.

Still ahead: a dramatic new look at an apparently deadly hazing incident. We have the 911 call made moments after Florida A&M drum major Robert Champion collapsed on the team bus after a football game.

We'll also hear from the former band director who was fired because school officials say he didn't stop hazing in his marching band.

Also ahead tonight, our series continues, "Ungodly Discipline" in school -- a former-assistant-principal-turned-lobbyist accused of spanking his students.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: At the fist one, I started crying. And I just remember counting as I pretty much went into a private place in my mind so I didn't have to feel anything. And I kept going and it kept going. And it kept going. I said, this guy is not going to stop. He's going to kill me.



COOPER: Tonight: disturbing details about the death of Robert Champion, a drum major at Florida A&M University who died days before Thanksgiving in a parking lot after performing at a football game. School officials and investigators have said from the beginning that hazing was involved. But they have given no other details.

Well, today, authorities released a 911 call that was made from that parking lot after Champion collapsed. We're going to play it for you in a moment.

Also today the school said it has expelled four students involved in the alleged hazing incident. Meanwhile the band director who was fired shortly after Champion died is firing back at the school. He insists he's been warning school officials for years about dangerous hazing in the band.

Here's what he said.


JULIAN WHITE, FIRED FLORIDA A&M BAND DIRECTOR: One thing about this entire event, I have a zero tolerance for hazing. And the record documents that I have provided leadership, proper leadership and guidance as well as bringing attention to the fact that we do have a zero tolerance for hazing in the band and in the university.


COOPER: Well, the medical examiner has still not reported a cause of death for Robert Champion, who was 26 years old. But the 911 call gives new details about his final moments.

David Mattingly joins me now.

David, let's listen to a portion of the call for help.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Are you with the person right now?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I'm outside the bus, so I can hear you.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. So he's inside the bus?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, he's inside the bus.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. How old is he had.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He -- he's not even -- he wasn't responding. We thought he was breathing, because he was making noises.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But I don't even know if he's breathing now.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. Is he awake? Do you know?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: His eyes are open. His eyes are open. He's not responding.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. But is he breathing?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have no idea. I cannot tell you that.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He just threw up.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He just threw up?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK, well, like I said, I do already have help on the way. I want you to keep -- was he like shaking or anything like that prior to this?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. He wasn't. He wasn't shaking.


COOPER: As you interviewed Robert Champion's parents after his death, is what we're hearing on the tapes, consistent with what they said happened that night?

DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it is consistent, but that only goes so far. As you mentioned earlier, there's been no clear cause of death released. We only know that the sheriff has come out and said that hazing was involved. We don't know to what extent.

So when I talked to his parents, they did confirm that they'd talked to the doctors who were fighting to save their son's life that night. I asked them, what did the doctors tell you? Did they see any signs of any injuries or anything that might have contributed to his death? But on the advice of their attorney, they wouldn't answer that question.

They're suing the university. They say they want their own answers. They want to be able to root out what they call this culture of hazing that they believe is going on at this university, as well as the culture of silence they say that goes along with it.

So when we heard these 911 tapes, it's the first sign that we've seen of anything that's been going on behind the scenes with this. And we heard in this 911 tape how Robert Champion's friends, his fellow band members, were rushing to his aid and doing everything they possibly could, quite possibly in his final moments of life. Listen.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is he putting him on his back?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is he flat on his back?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. We're trying to get him on his back now.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All right. Cool. He's flat. He's flat on his back.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He is? OK. Then I want you to kneel next to him and I want you to look in his mouth for food or vomit.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There is vomit in his mouth?


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK. Well, then I want you to turn his head to the side and I want you to clean out his mouth and his nose.

Can you hear me? Sir, can you hear me?



COOPER: Did the university's -- obviously, what you said, fired the band director. The governor is looking for more action here, though, right?

MATTINGLY: Yes. Governor Rick Scott getting more involved as the days go by. He originally said the state needs to investigate this and he's calling on a state investigation, apparently not happy with just the university itself investigating this incident.

He's also now calling on all universities in the state of Florida to re-examine their hazing policies to make sure everyone knows that this is a practice that is absolutely condemned.

Well, everything we're hearing out of Florida A&M is that, as you heard the band director say, he was very aggressive in trying to stop this. He holds workshops every year. He makes sure that the students know not only is it illegal in the state of Florida to be involved in hazing, but it's something that can also get you kicked out of the band.

And in the weeks leading up to this incident, he actually kicked almost 30 members of this band out for hazing. So he's saying there wasn't enough follow-up higher up the chain at this university to make sure that this was rooted out. But this is something that's going to be obviously worked out in the courts as we go along.

COOPER: Yes. A lot of questions about what happened on that bus that led to this. David Mattingly, appreciate it. Thanks for continuing to follow it.

Let's check some other stories we're following. Susan Hendricks has a "360 Bulletin" for us -- Susan. SUSAN HENDRICKS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, thanks.

Syria's crackdown on demonstrators has now killed at least 4,000 people since March. That is according to the U.N. high commissioner for human rights. He says the number could actually be much higher than that. A local activist group said at least 23 people were killed just today.

Officials in Egypt say results for the first round of parliamentary voting won't come until tomorrow or Saturday. Egyptians voted Monday and Tuesday for the first time since President Hosni Mubarak was forced out of power on February. \

On this World AIDS Day, President Obama announced a new $50 million investment in medical facilities and treatment options across the country. The AIDS virus was first discovered 30 years ago. More than 600,000 Americans have died from it.

Also tonight, President Obama and the first family helped to light the national Christmas tree in Washington. This was the 89th tree-lighting ceremony. The tradition began back in 1923 with President Coolidge.

And new moms, if you named your baby girl Sophia, you have a lot of company out there. Sophia tops's survey of the top baby girl names of 2011, followed by Emma, Isabella, Olivia and Ava. For boys, the top baby name, Aiden, along with Jackson, Mason, Liam, and Jacob rounding out the top five.

And Anderson, there's another name that's proving to be quite a contender. Check this out from "The Today Show."


AL ROKER, NBC'S "THE TODAY SHOW": And you say there's an Anderson Cooper effect?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There is. Anderson Cooper is our baby-name man of the year. This is the first time we've ever seen a first name and a last name rising on the list. Anderson is up 101 spots on the list.

ROKER: Wow. So these are babies that have gray hair?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Not gray but very, very blond hair.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And Cooper, as well.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Cooper is on, yes. Which may be Bradley Cooper. You know, he's sexiest man alive this year. There may be something going on there.


COOPER: No, it's not Bradley Cooper.

HENDRICKS: Come on, what are you, nuts?

COOPER: Please, who is Bradley Cooper?

HENDRICKS: Who's that?

COOPER: Never met him at the family reunion. Wow.

HENDRICKS: Love the hair.

COOPER: Yes. And still, though, I like -- there's this -- yes, but it's climbed up the list. But it's still, like, No. 600 or something on the list.

HENDRICKS: Oh, no, come on. It's up there. It's an Anderson Cooper effect.

COOPER: Well, yes, all right.

Susan, thanks very much. I'll check back with you shortly.

Still ahead on 360, at a Christian school in Wisconsin, spanking is in the name of God. The students who were hit, they're now adults. They're angry, and they are speaking out.


AMY KROENKE, FORMER CALVARY BAPTIST STUDENT: I was in pain and, in addition to it, it was humiliation, too, because I know that once the spanking was over -- I don't know which hurt worse, the spanking or going back to class and having everyone look at you and know that that's what just happened to you.


COOPER: Also tonight, is former Penn State defensive coach Jerry Sandusky getting ready to make a plea deal? A lot of speculation and rumors flying tonight. What do the lawyers say? The answer to that coming up.


COOPER: "Crime & Punishment" tonight, over the last couple months, we've been reporting on parents who spank their kids in the name of God, often using implements like rods or rulers. It's a story we first called "Ungodly Discipline." These parents believe the Bible tells them it's their duty to spank their kids with paddles and other objects.

The leaders of the movement have fought hard to preserve the right to hit students in private Christian schools. But tonight, Gary Tuchman investigates one of these leaders. His name is Marvin Munyon, and he founded a group called Wisconsin Capitol Watch and has lobbied his state's lawmakers for years on this issue. He also used to be an assistant principal at a Christian school in Wisconsin where some of his former students remember him all too well.

Here's Gary Tuchman's report.


KROENKE: He picked up the board, and it's a rather thick wooden board. It has holes drilled in it. And I got five swats pretty hard with it.

GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Amy Kroenke is 39 years old, a wife and mother. But she still vividly remembers what happened to her in elementary school, what she calls beatings in the name of God.

KROENKE: I cried every time I had to go in there.

TUCHMAN: Doug Bicknell said he was often hit by the same man as Amy.

(on camera) Show me the force that was used with the paddle.

DOUG BICKNELL, FORMER CALVARY BAPTIST STUDENT: It was up against the wall. My body was just -- the chair was up against the wall. So I mean, if it wasn't, I would have fallen over. So that's why it was like that.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): Scott Bicknell is Doug's brother.

SCOTT BICKNELL, FORMER CALVARY BAPTIST STUDENT: It hurt like anything you can ever imagine.

TUCHMAN: Nancy Bicknell is their mother.

NANCY BICKNELL, MOTHER OF FORMER CALVARY BAPTIST STUDENTS: It was huge, long, made out of oak with a handle on it. And it holes drilled in it to cut the wind resistance so you could get the hardest impact.

TUCHMAN: What was the name of the assistant principal who hit your son?

N. BUCKNELL: Marvin Munyon.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Marvin, it's nice to have you here.


TUCHMAN: This is Marvin Munyon, making an appearance on an evangelical Christian TV station in Wisconsin. Back in the 1980s, he was an assistant principal at the Calvary Baptist School in Watertown, Wisconsin.

Proponents of spanking say it comes from the urging in the Bible not to spare the rod. Their translation: children should be physically punished.

Marvin Munyon left Calvary Baptist in 1986 ,but before and after he was an influential state lobbyist. One of his main interests? Protecting the right to spank students in Wisconsin's private schools. And he's been successful at that; it's still allowed. But corporal punishment is banned in Wisconsin's public schools. And just a few months ago, Munyon talked explicitly about legislation which would increase the number of school staff obliged to tell police about suspected abuse.

MUNYON: Every employee in the school system would be required to be mandatory reporters of child abuse and neglect.

TUCHMAN: And it's abuse that several former students are now saying they suffered at the hands of Munyon. They say they weren't just spanked; they were beaten.

KROENKE: I was in pain and in addition to it, it was humiliation, too. Because I knew that once the spanking was over -- I don't know which hurt worse, the spanking or going pack to class and having everyone look at you and know that that's what just happened to you.

D. BICKNELL: You start whack, whack. I would never cry, and the man hated that I wouldn't cry. This time he got me to cry. At the first swat, I said this guy isn't going to stop. And I was always good at math. My dad was a math teacher, so I was counting. At the first one, I started crying and I just remember counting as I pretty much went into a private place in my mind so I didn't have to feel anything. And it kept going and it kept going; it kept going. I said, "This guy is not going to stop. He's going to kill me."

It stopped at 53.

N. BICKNELL: He was crying, and I said, "Who spanked you?"

He said, "Mr. Munyon." And then he said, "My butt is pleading." And he was old enough that I wasn't going to pull his pants down, but I thought, "Well, I'm going to look." And I looked at the upper part of his buttocks, and there was strike marks with little beads of blood on it.

TUCHMAN (on camera): Marvin Munyon lives in this house with his wife, just minutes away from Calvary Baptist. I've talked to him on the phone several times. I requested an on-camera interview with him. First he said yes. But later, he changed his mind and said no and then maybe. After that he said I need to talk to my lawyer. Finally he stopped answering my calls.

(voice-over) The pastor who now leads Calvary Baptist wasn't in charge when Munyon was there but says he regards Munyon as a friend.

(on camera) Do you think, before you came to this institution, that on some occasions, there was abuse by the teachers?


TUCHMAN (voice-over): Pastor Robert Loggins says Munyon has acknowledged to him that he did, indeed, carry out corporal punishment but did it lawfully, without marks or bruises. The pastor does say he no longer allows it at the school. Instead, he leaves it up to the parents at home.

(on camera) If Marvin Munyon used a paddle with holes in it to hit children, would that have been abusive?

LOGGINS: I really don't know. I'm not sure.

TUCHMAN: So you're not sure because you're feeling like you don't want to criticize Marvin Munyon or you just theoretically don't know if that's abuse or not?

LOGGINS: I don't know that that would be abuse or not. I know that the teachers used that when I was in the public school as a child. I never looked at it as abuse at that particular point.

TUCHMAN: But if a teacher did that today in your school...

LOGGINS: They wouldn't do it. We wouldn't allow them.

TUCHMAN: Would you consider it abusive today?

LOGGINS: I probably would, yes.

TUCHMAN (voice-over): Nancy Bicknell worked at the school with her husband. She says she felt if she didn't let her children get hit...

N. BICKNELL: That I could not be right with God and leave the Baptist church. I would not be right with God; my kids wouldn't be right with God. I was indoctrinated with this.

TUCHMAN: Something she says she now feels terrible about.

Her son Doug has serious health problems. He's an alcoholic and considers himself a broken man. He says he's never been able to recover from his discipline from Marvin Munyon.

(on camera) You were only -- you were only a child and here you are at the age of 41, and you're still reliving it.

D. BICKNELL: It doesn't go away. It will never go away.


COOPER: So Munyon declined to go on camera with you. But during your -- the number of phone conversations you had, I mean, did he say anything about these accusations?

TUCHMAN: Well, what's interesting, Anderson, is initially he said he would go on camera with me and he was also very open. He admitted that he spanked students when he was an administrator at the school.

But when I called him back a few weeks later to set up the exact date, then he was much less interested in talking to me and, frankly, I think it's because he saw some of our coverage. And he got very paranoid about this, about this interview while I was talking to him on the phone. At one point he said, "Are you recording this?"

And I said, "No, I'm not recording. I just want your viewpoint."

He did not want to talk to me on camera. He did not want to talk on the record about the accusations. But I must emphasize, we gave him lots of opportunities to talk to us.

COOPER: All right. Gary, appreciate it. Thanks very much.

Up next, will former Penn State football coach Jerry Sandusky take a plea deal or not? His lawyer speaks out.

Also ahead, Herman Cain talks about what his wife knew about his connection to an Atlanta woman who claims she had a 13-year affair with him. Cain says it was only a friendship, nothing more, but did his wife actually know about it? Find out, ahead.


HENDRICKS: I'm Susan Hendricks with a "360 News & Business Bulletin."

There will be no plea deal from Jerry Sandusky. That's according to Sandusky's attorney, who responded to rumors his client will cop a plea. He faces child sex abuse charges and a civil lawsuit, as well. Sandusky says he is innocent.

GOP presidential hopeful Herman Cain met today with the editorial board of the New Hampshire Union-Leader and told them, yes, he gave money on a regular basis to Ginger White without telling his wife. Ginger White claims she had a 13-year affair with Cain. He says it was a friendship and nothing more.

On Wall Street now. A mixed day for stocks after yesterday's big rally. The Dow lost 26 points.

And a super profit -- how about this one? -- for a copy of Action Comics No. 1, where Superman made his debut back in 1938. The comic book sold at an online auction for $2.16 million. The seller, actor Nicolas Cage. That's according to "The Hollywood Reporter." Cage bought the original 14 years ago for $150,000.

That is the latest. Now back to Anderson.

COOPER: "ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" is ahead at 11 p.m. We'll check in. Erin, what is up?

ERIN BURNETT, CNN ANCHOR: All right, Anderson. Well, "Super Committee 2" could be a blockbuster coming to a theater near you. All right. But in all seriousness, Joe Lieberman coming "OUTFRONT" to talk about his plan to get another super committee to go for a grand bargain and to do it before the elections. We're going to get the bottom line from him on exactly what he's about to propose and whether it could make a big difference for America's debt crisis. And then we're going to talk to billionaire Richard Branson, known for, well, space flights and submarines and all those 54 Virgin brands like the planes around the world. He comes "OUTFRONT" to talk about how he does business. He doesn't do it the normal way. There's a word he uses that I won't say, Anderson. But you will get to see him in a wedding gown. Yes. Uh-huh. That's Richard Branson. Coming "OUTFRONT" tonight.

COOPER: All right.

BURNETT: See you soon.

COOPER: Erin, thanks. We look forward to it.

Coming up, two guys in Corvettes achieving Internet fame for all the wrong reasons. And they wind up on "The RidicuList," (UNINTELLIGIBLE) next.


COOPER: Time now for the "RidicuList." And tonight we're adding the Texas Vette racers. Now, I'm not talking about people in general who race Corvettes in Texas. I'm talking about two specific guys and one specific incident that went down last week in the woodlands north of Houston. It was Thanksgiving Day and a guy named Gerod was going to pick up a turkey for his family when he noticed two guys in Corvettes revving their engines at a stop light. So, Gerod got out his phone and started filming and narrating. Watch.


GEROD RUSH, SHOT VIDEO OF CARS RACING: Little kid crossing the street. Let's see how stupid these guys are. (EXPLETIVE DELETED) And, yes, knew that was coming.


COOPER: And that, ladies and gentlemen, is what you call car-ma with a "C." Revved up, tricked out, fully loaded sports karma.

Can you imagine how those guys explain this to their insurance companies? Two beautiful cars wrecked? And for what? A drag race on Thanksgiving Day on a street with kids and joggers and bikes going by. Way to go, guys. Way to go.

The drivers weren't injured, although according to the Montgomery County police report, one of them said his leg hurt and that he was dizzy. I don't know. I think maybe he meant ditzy.

Anyway, did I mention he was also driving with a suspended license? Oh, yes, he was.

As for Gerod, the guy with the camera phone, well, he posted his video to YouTube, gave it the title "Two Turkeys on Thanksgiving Wrecking their Corvettes in the Woodlands." It's gotten about 3 million hits, at least a few of them, apparently, from police officers, because arrest warrants have been issued for both the drivers.

Gerod breaks it down as follows to the Houston news station KTRK.


RUSH: These were adults. And to act this way, to me, is -- well, it's just irresponsible.


COOPER: Irresponsible, illogical and incredibly idiotic. And those are the words that I could think of starting with "I."


RUSH: Maybe this will help teach somebody a lesson if these guys actually face a consequences, that hey, you know what? Before I pull up at the light and race this guy, I remember what happened to those guys on YouTube. And maybe it will save lives.


COOPER: Saving lives, one YouTube video at a time. I like it.

Up until now, the only cautionary tale about the dangers of street racing comes from that movie "Better Off Dead."


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You must obey the proper speed limits. A car is not a toy.


COOPER: So the moral of the story is, unless it's 1985 and your name is John Cusack, please don't race on the street. Otherwise, even if you don't kill someone, you might still wreck your Corvette and end up on YouTube and have a warrant out for your arrest. And that, my friends is what we call social Darwinism on "The RidicuList."

OK, that's it for 360. Thanks for watching. "ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT" starts now.