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PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT

What Would a Romney Presidency Be Like? Daily Shot with Ali Wentworth; Interview With Dara Torres

Aired May 24, 2012 - 21:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


PIERS MORGAN, CNN HOST: Tonight.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What would a Romney presidency be like?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: Mitt Romney makes some pretty big promises in his latest ad, but can he keep them? I'll ask both sides.

Also a mischievous shall we say a unique take on the news of the day.

Political junkie and funny lady, the irrepressible Ali Wentworth.

Plus a missing child, a shocking confession, has the killer of a 6-year-old finally been found?

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

RAY KELLY, NEW YORK CITY POLICE CHIEF: The New York Police Department is announcing the arrest of Pedro Hernandez for the murder of Etan Patz.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: The last bizarre twist in a 33-year-old mystery.

Also countdown to the Olympics. Champion swimming Dara Torres has won 12 medals. She's gunning for more in London.

DARA TORRES, OLYMPIC SWIMMER: I love standing up on the blocks against the young whipper snappers and swimming against them.

MORGAN: Tonight I dare her to show me what she's really made of.

I would like to see the greatest (INAUDIBLE) in history.

And "Only in America," a good deed gone very, very bad.

This is PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT.

Good evening. Our big story tonight, politics and promises. Mitt Romney rolls out a new ad today and makes some ambitious promise on the deficit, trade with China, the economy and jobs. Let's take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What would a Romney presidency be like? Day one, President Romney announces deficit reductions, ending the Obama era of big government, helping secure our kids' futures.

President Romney stands up to China on trade and demands they play by the rules. President Romney begins repealing job-killing regulations that are costing the economy billions.

That's what a Romney presidency will be like.

MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I'm Mitt Romney and I approve this message.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: All very exciting, but can candidate Romney keep these promises? Joining me now with more on our story is Jim Talent, senior adviser to Mitt Romney and a former senator from Missouri.

So the promise land on the Mitt Romney looks all very enthralling, Jim Talent. But how many of these will he actually do?

JIM TALENT, SENIOR ADVISER TO MITT ROMNEY: Well, we really think that he can do a lot of them. And in contrast to the president, you know, who's failed on promises like getting unemployment down below 6 percent by this time, it isn't below 8 percent, but most of these, Piers, these ideas ought to have bipartisan support.

I mean the Keystone Pipeline, opening up offshore areas for exploration that the president's had under moratorium, lowering the corporate tax rate, repealing Obamacare. A lot of Democrats voted against Obamacare in the first place. So this is an agenda that's doable.

MORGAN: But tell me on the specifics, say, like standing up to China on trade, what does that mean in reality? I mean what -- it's all very well to say that, but what would President Romney, day one, actually do or say to China to carry through that pledge?

TALENT: The pledge, or the proposal, is to have China listed as a currency manipulator because they're not allowing their currency to float. And the overall message to the Chinese is just to, look, if you want to be part of the international community, you have to be responsible like everybody else.

MORGAN: I spoke to Jack Welch last night about the whole raging furor over Mitt Romney's record at Bain. He's quite interesting. When I pressed him about whether private equity companies and people that run them genuinely believe it's about job creation or making profit, he said no, it's about making money. It's not about job creation. And he wished that Mitt Romney hadn't tried to claim it was about job creation.

What is your reaction to that?

TALENT: Well, Governor Romney has always said, you know, the point of going into business is to make the business successful which is defined at least, in part, by the business being able to make a profit. I mean the problem we've had in America the last few years, Piers, under the president is not enough businesses have made any money.

But in the course of doing that, you know, when a business is -- when management is reformed which is what -- which is what private equity companies do, that's how they become successful, then the businesses grow and they hire employees. And so four companies alone that Governor Romney helped start have hired over a hundred thousand employees. So it's a win-win.

MORGAN: I don't know if you saw this but David Letterman had a rather interesting take on how President Romney's day one might end up. Let's take a look at this.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DAVID LETTERMAN, HOST, LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN: Day one.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What would a Romney presidency be like? Day one, President Romney immediately approves the Keystone Pipeline, introduces tax cuts and reforms, and issues the order to begin replacing Obamacare. Day two, Mitt Romney is reminded by his wife Ann that he lost to President Obama by a landslide.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: I'm glad you can see the funny side, Jim.

TALENT: Absolutely. It's a great --

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: There is obviously a health skepticism about these ads that of course it may all just be a figment of Mitt Romney's imagination.

TALENT: Well, sure. I mean, I -- look, it's up to the American people. But we can't -- I mean, and this is serious, Piers. We can't keep going on the way we've been going. I mean the American people are suffering. I mentioned unemployment before. Median family income is down $4300, I mean, more and more people are saying that they're working hard if they have a job, working harder and finding it more and more difficult to make ends meet.

So I mean we need a change. And this is a man, Mitt Romney, whose experienced in doing that. I mean he has turned around every organization of which he's been a part. And that's part of what the ads are intended to remind the voters of.

MORGAN: But when Barack Obama really starts campaigning properly or ferociously, he's going to say, look, I saved the car industry, he's going to say I helped bring unemployment down, not as far as I'd like to, but I certainly made a big inroad into where it was. He's going to say that I ordered the killing of Osama bin Laden.

The actual list of things which are to his credit, which Republicans never give him any credit for, is actually quite impressive if you highlight those pluses, isn't it?

TALENT: Well, he's been saying those things already. And his poll numbers are not reflecting that the people believe he should be re-elected. I mean they're going south on him, and it's in part -- and we do give credit. I mean like the killing of Osama bin Laden, sure, I mean that was a good thing. But you know, when he says unemployment, for example, going down, I mean the American people know that's a very hollow claim.

As you know, Piers, if you -- if you consider the people who are -- who have quit working, it was the only reason unemployment has gone down at all is because so many people have left the workforce. I mean they're so discouraged they're not even looking actually. The state of employment in the country is as bad as it was at the peak of the -- at the peak of the recession.

So, you know, it's like our campaign says, it's about the economy and we're really not stupid. And I think the American people know that we need a change.

MORGAN: Jim Talent, thanks for joining me. Appreciate it.

TALENT: Hey, thank you, Piers.

MORGAN: Here with the other side of our big story, Philadelphia mayor, Michael Nutter. He is a Democrat and calls Mitt Romney, and I quote, "a corporate buy-out specialist." And Mayor Nutter joins me now.

So I can assume, Mayor Nutter, that you're not overly impressed by the first day of Romney presidency ad campaign.

MAYOR MICHAEL NUTTER (D), PHILADELPHIA: There's really not much to be impressed with, Piers. The gentleman was in Philadelphia today, making the outrageous and really not too bright claim that somehow larger class sizes with children and teachers was a good thing. I think every second-grader knows that that's not a good idea. And so whether it's the first day ads, whether it is the corporate buy-out specialist work of Mr. Romney when he was at Bain Capital, putting companies out of business, putting people out of jobs, and bankrupting economies.

That's not the kind of leadership that this country needs, and it is why, when you look at the real record, and you were getting at it with the gentleman you had on earlier, talking about the real record of President Obama, leading this country through the worst recession since the Great Depression, which was handed to him on day one, after he took the oath of office. From the failed policies of the Republicans before him.

MORGAN: Here's the problem, Mayor Nutter, which is this. This is a very convincing, Democrat, defensive position of the president and everything that he's done. And then you --

(CROSSTALK)

NUTTER: It's actually an affirmative position, Piers.

MORGAN: Right. But then he gets someone like Cory Booker stand up and he's a very highly respected Democrat, and he appears to be completely at odds with the president over the one thing that President Obama has decided to really go at Mitt Romney about, his record at Bain, saying it's nauseating.

NUTTER: Piers, I think, one, that's old news. I respect Mayor Booker, he's doing a great job in his city, and is doing his hard work each and every day. There's only one person on the Democratic side, though, running for president. That's President Barack Obama and we're running a very aggressive, straightforward and truth-telling campaign about Mitt Romney's record.

Now he has made his work, leading the corporate buy-out operation, Bain Capital, as the centerpiece of his campaign, as the reason that he should be president of the United States of America. So that deserves close examination.

MORGAN: It would also --

NUTTER: The facts are --

MORGAN: It would also --

(CROSSTALK)

NUTTER: He put people out of work.

MORGAN: If I can jump in, it will also come down, though, to a matter of trust. And although President Obama, as I've said earlier, has got a good record in certain areas, the car industry and so on, and I think a lot of notable successes in foreign policy.

NUTTER: Yes.

MORGAN: If you would look at something like Guantanamo Bay, I was one of those people that was absolutely thrilled to see President Obama say that one of his great commitments would be the closure of Guantanamo Bay. An institution that I believe flies in the face of everything American justice has ever stood for.

And then he went back on his word. He broke that promise. So how --

NUTTER: Piers -- MORGAN: How -- let me finish.

NUTTER: Sure.

MORGAN: How would he get something out for this election and makes a series of further promises about what he will do in a second term, why should we believe him?

NUTTER: Well, we should believe him because of the things that he's done in the first term. President Barack Obama said that he would bring health care to all Americans. He did that. President Obama said that he would straighten out our financial institution mess -- again, that was handed to him. He did that. He's been a champion for civil rights, he's brought people together, he's helped to unify the country.

MORGAN: Right. But what about the things --

NUTTER: And reestablish America's promise --

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: Right. I get all this. But what about the things that he promised to do that he then didn't do?

NUTTER: Well, Piers, that's why we have elections and often you get a second term. I have to believe that President Barack Obama knows nine million percent more about the complexity of the Guantanamo Bay situation, no disrespect to you, than either you or I sitting here. And I'm sure that the briefings that he gets and the other information that is not available to us, might have led him to make a different decision.

But I have to tell you, Piers, for the millions of Americans who are out of work right now, I can tell you on the ground in Philadelphia, none of them are walking up to me, asking me about Guantanamo Bay. What they're asking about is a job. What they're asking about is going to college. What they're asking about is, will my children be able to get a great education?

And so these are at-home issues on the ground in Philadelphia and in the cities all across the United States of America. That's what this election is about.

MORGAN: Mayor Nutter, thank you for joining me. I appreciate it.

NUTTER: Thank you, Piers.

MORGAN: I want to bring in a woman whose take on politics is, well, let's just call it intriguing.

Ali Wentworth is a political junkie, Internet talk show host, wife, mother, actress, "New York Times" best-selling author of "Ali in Wonderland: And Other Tall Tales," and she joins me now.

Quite a long list of descriptions of you. Which one do you prefer?

ALI WENTWORTH, "DAILY SHOT WITH ALI WENTWORTH": Lingerie model.

(LAUGHTER)

WENTWORTH: Why are you laughing?

MORGAN: I'm not.

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: Wish I had the pictures to prove it.

Now this election is all heating up, Ali.

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: And you have an intriguing take generally about all this. I would say a healthily intriguing take. What do you make of where we are? It's a choice between Barack Obama who has been -- I kind of look and said, OK, but a little disappointing to his own fan base. Mitt Romney who's never even excited his own fan base, but is now the nominee.

What do you think of the battle that we're now about to face?

WENTWORTH: It's much closer than I expected it to be. To tell you the truth. I am -- you know, I'm a Democrat. So I put my money on that horse. But it -- you know, the neck and neck thing has been extraordinary and kind of exciting to watch.

MORGAN: Why is it -- why is it closer, do you think, than people expected?

WENTWORTH: I love that I'm the authority of this because --

MORGAN: Why shouldn't you be?

WENTWORTH: Well, no, no, people come to me for their political insights. I've overtaken George in that department. I think it's -- I think it's disappointment -- I mean everybody likes a new guy. Everybody puts all their hopes and dreams in, oh, he's going to -- he's going to change everything and make it a better place. I mean I think that's sort of historically how politics are.

But I think it will be neck and neck for a long time. And you know there's always very -- there's always a comedy to mind in the selection as well.

MORGAN: I think the Republican race was just beyond comedic joy from start to finish, isn't it?

WENTWORTH: I remember tweeting during one of the debates. I'm just waiting for one of them to turn to the camera and say, live from New York, it's "Saturday Night Live."

(LAUGHTER)

WENTWORTH: Because I just like -- I couldn't believe --

MORGAN: It was a wonderful cast of characters from Herman Cain to Michele Bachmann.

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: Even Ron Paul. They're all just wonderful --

WENTWORTH: The sound bites, it was like candy every day --

MORGAN: Great.

WENTWORTH: -- for like Jon Stewart.

MORGAN: For the comedian world.

WENTWORTH: Yes. Yes.

MORGAN: Yes. It was, isn't it?

WENTWORTH: It was very great.

MORGAN: But now to get serious --

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: -- because one of these two people will become president. I love this invitation that's arrived. A big caricature of Donald Trump with "I want you, dining with the Donald and Mitt."

WENTWORTH: Yes. So you --

MORGAN: Making you --

(CROSSTALK)

WENTWORTH: You buy a $30 ticket.

MORGAN: Yes.

WENTWORTH: And if you win the lottery, you get to have dinner with the two of them.

MORGAN: Would you see that as a huge lottery to win?

WENTWORTH: I -- Piers, I have spent over $10,000 on tickets so far.

(LAUGHTER)

WENTWORTH: No, I would -- I would -- for me personally I would spend the $3 on a box of milk goods, but you know more power to the people if that's -- you know. MORGAN: But the key thing, though, I think Mitt Romney has, he's got a lot of people like Donald Trump lining up behind him, very rich, die-hard Republicans, who are all driven by one thing. They want to get rid of Barack Obama.

And I don't think you can underestimate that. I think there is a collective force out there amongst the Republicans. Right, we've had our little battle, now we're going to unite and we're going to give him everything we've got. And it's going to be, I think, a really tight race.

WENTWORTH: Well, what -- I mean the irony of the wealthy and I throw Mitt Romney in that ring, the wealthy trying to overrun a president when our economy is the worse it's ever been. I find, you know, ridiculous. But --

MORGAN: Do you buy into Mitt Romney's argument that he is a proven track record businessman and therefore he can run America like a successful company?

WENTWORTH: I mean I think -- I think he is a businessman. I have -- yes, I think he's probably a very good businessman. But you know there's more to being a president than being a good businessman. I think there's a little more --

MORGAN: What do you want to see in your president? Because women, I think, will decide this election, and they seem to be in the polls fluctuating quite wildly at the moment. What do you, as a smart woman in America, what do you want?

WENTWORTH: Well, first of all, I would like my vagina to be taken off the table in the politics.

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: Is it on the table?

WENTWORTH: Well, it's been on the table.

(LAUGHTER)

WENTWORTH: And it will be on your table if you don't mind --

MORGAN: Wow.

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: Now we're talking.

WENTWORTH: Yes. No, I think -- I think that, you know, I have a hard time with reproduction rights being in the political arena, but that's me. You know, obviously the economy, jobs, all extremely important and I don't think it's a male-female thing to want, you know, our country and our economy to be full and ripe. And so -- but as far as being a woman, which I've been for almost close to 10 years now. (LAUGHTER)

WENTWORTH: You know, I do think that when it gets into the Planned Parenthood, all that kind of debate, I really have a hard time with the kind of men debating what's OK and what's not.

MORGAN: Well, you can see Mitt Romney desperately trying to get all that off the agenda.

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: And all about the economy because that's his strong point as he sees it.

Let's take a short break, and come back and talk about your husband, George Stephanopoulos, and gay marriage although --

WENTWORTH: Our gay marriage.

MORGAN: Not necessarily.

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: Your gay marriage, but maybe you can tell me something about that. But first let's look at something that you said about Michelle Obama.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WENTWORTH: Is Michelle Obama the secret weapon behind President Barack Obama? Well, according to Pew Research Michelle Obama's -- yes. Is what, John? Sixty-six percent and President Obama is 44 percent?

Do you think that a strong woman behind the man is the secret weapon? Yes, we got it on camera. Mommy is the secret sauce behind that burger we call George.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WENTWORTH: In national news, out today on newsstands is a "Newsweek" cover of President Obama that says the first gay president, and it's very risky for President Obama to do this.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

WENTWORTH: Right now, pre-election.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It could play both ways, right?

WENTWORTH: It could play both ways. As you did once in your youth. (END VIDEO CLIP)

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: Ali Wentworth's take on President Obama stance on gay marriage in "Daily Shot with Ali Wentworth" and she's back with me now.

Let's talk gay marriage.

WENTWORTH: Let's talk it, happy about it.

MORGAN: Yes, you were so ecstatic, in fact, that you began kissing every woman that you could find.

WENTWORTH: Well, not that I could find. They have to be on the red carpet.

MORGAN: No, I have photographic evidence.

WENTWORTH: I'm -- I'm picky.

MORGAN: Of you kissing every woman you can get your hands on. There you go.

WENTWORTH: Well, I was celebrating gay marriage.

MORGAN: That's you and Mariska Hargitay and Debra Messing.

WENTWORTH: By the way, who would not want to kiss these girls? I didn't need gay marriage to be --

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: The statement to George, to the nation, what were you doing in those pictures?

WENTWORTH: It's so adorable you think I was making a statement. I just had too much wine.

(LAUGHTER)

WENTWORTH: No, that was the day that Obama endorsed gay marriage and I was on the red carpet and these are my friends and we all went gay marriage and kissed on the lips.

MORGAN: There is obviously only one man in your life.

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: Who says moving on quickly.

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: To avoid George anymore embarrassment, but you and George, I mean, how does it work? Because you obviously both savvy political types. Do you wake up in the morning and the first thing you do is head for BlackBerries, get the political news, start going at it?

WENTWORTH: Yes, that's what we do. Yes. We talk --

MORGAN: Political pillow talk.

WENTWORTH: Fiscal responsibility, that's our pillow talk. Well, you know, I'm so honored to be called all these things you call me, but I'm really not that political a person. You know I'm more of a comedian.

MORGAN: I bet you are, though. I've seen your work. You always have that --

WENTWORTH: But -- but George and I don't talk about it.

MORGAN: Really?

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: Never?

WENTWORTH: He's been talking about it all day. And by the way, I'm not the person to talk about nuclear proliferation with.

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: What do you and George talk about in bed?

WENTWORTH: In bed?

MORGAN: In bed?

WENTWORTH: Well, we're both reading. You know I'm of course --

MORGAN: What do you read?

WENTWORTH: Well, I'm reading the history of Islam and he's reading "In Style" magazine.

(LAUGHTER)

WENTWORTH: You know, we -- you know, we're like any boring couple. We talk about our kids. We talk about, did you pay the plumber?

MORGAN: You talk about attachment parenting?

WENTWORTH: I'm fascinated by attachment parenting.

MORGAN: What did you make of that cover, that extraordinary cover?

WENTWORTH: First of all, it was an extraordinary cover because the boy was, if I'm not mistaken, in camouflage pants. Right? So doesn't that ad a whole weird element to it?

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: I'm stunned that --

WENTWORTH: He looks a little military.

MORGAN: I was amazed by how few people appeared to be really disturbed by it.

WENTWORTH: When the child can ask for milk, that's -- you know, that's the cutoff. When they run over from the playground and, you know, tug at your shirt that -- no. Or even worse, when they come with their, you know, UVA duffel and they come back for spring break and they say, you know, mom, a little suey (ph), it's -- no, it's not. It's -- I'm not a fan of attachment parenting because I actually make -- think that it makes children a little weaker and I don't mean physically weaker. I mean they -- there are challenges in life that, you know, one has to endure.

MORGAN: Yes, let them loose, for goodness sake.

WENTWORTH: Yes. So like let them scrape their knee a little bit, let them -- you know, let life roughen up.

MORGAN: Even monkeys at about -- I think at about six months get thrown off the breast.

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: I mean, it's ridiculous.

WENTWORTH: Yes. Yes.

MORGAN: Isn't it?

WENTWORTH: Yes. All animals. They -- you know.

MORGAN: Now let's -- talking of animals and trees and fights and all that kind of thing.

WENTWORTH: Yes. Yes.

MORGAN: Let's move to the breakfast show wars because your husband and "GMA" are firmly on top in the battle with "Today."

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: Is this reflecting itself? Is the glory coming your way in any way?

WENTWORTH: No. You mean, have I gotten a daffodil or a new pair of shoes?

MORGAN: Yes, anything in it for you? WENTWORTH: No. But I think it's -- I think it's fantastic. I mean it's obviously nice to be on that side of the fence. But you know my husband is -- he doesn't fall prey to all that stuff as much as he is -- he's all just a hard worker.

MORGAN: He doesn't wake up, get the reigns (ph) and start beating his chest?

WENTWORTH: No, he doesn't. I --

MORGAN: Doing his Tarzan impression?

WENTWORTH: I beat my chest for him. But, no, I think it's -- you know, it's encouraging. I think it's a great chemistry on "GMA." I think they all just get along well and it's, you know, as in anything, as in movies, as in, you know, what -- the sparks that are happening tonight, chemistry is everything. So -- and I think they really have it at "GMA." And, you know, he's doing "GMA," he also does "This Week" on Sunday. So he works seven days a week.

And I'm hoping he'll get a role as a doctor on "Private Practice" on ABC so that we don't miss him for that one hour, which is why I'm on J date all night because, you know, he's never around. He's always working.

MORGAN: Now you've got two young daughters.

WENTWORTH: Yes, I do.

MORGAN: Mitt Romney's great plan appears to be for education for our young to have big class sizes. He thinks it doesn't matter. I think that is a load of posh, personally. And I think the bigger the class size, the less chance obviously that your child will get the same kind of attention.

WENTWORTH: Well --

MORGAN: Of a smaller class. Having said that, it does depend on the teacher.

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: But what do you think?

WENTWORTH: Well, I mean --

MORGAN: What do you want for your kids?

WENTWORTH: Well, I'm going to home-school them now after this. But --

(LAUGHTER)

WENTWORTH: No, I think -- I prefer for the shy kid, for the underachiever, for -- I mean, they get lost in the shuffle. I think it's not a -- I don't believe it. I don't think you can have one teacher and, you know, you fill up city field full of children and expect everybody to get the same thing. I think there is something to a little bit of individual attention.

And you know, also we talk a lot in our country about bullying and so those things kind of get hidden when there's a -- when there's a lot of kids.

MORGAN: I agree.

WENTWORTH: You know, you can't really sort of find out what's going on socially and that's as important as anything else.

MORGAN: We are ending on a consensus.

Ali Wentworth, thank you for coming in.

WENTWORTH: Piers Morgan, it's been a pleasure.

MORGAN: The "Daily Shot with Ali Wentworth" is on Yahoo!

WENTWORTH: Yes, it is. Every day on Yahoo!

MORGAN: Exciting.

WENTWORTH: Yes.

MORGAN: I enjoy it very much.

WENTWORTH: Thank you very much.

MORGAN: It's been nice to see you.

WENTWORTH: As I enjoy your show.

MORGAN: Thank you very much.

Next a true Olympic champion, swimmer Dara Torres, defying age and stand to get a gold in London. Wait until you see what she does for me.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MORGAN: The eyes of the world are on London with the 2012 summer games just nine weeks away. And one champion swimmer who plans to add to her collection of medals is Dara Torres. She's a proud possessor of a dozen medals, four gold, four silver, four bronze. And at the age of 45, she's going for the gold again. It's a perfect example of what I mean when I talk about "Keeping America Great."

Dara, welcome.

TORRES: Thank you.

MORGAN: You have restored my personal faith in my ability to win an Olympic gold. I'm 47. Everyone told me I was past it. You are living proof it is not over for me. The dream hasn't died. TORRES: The dream hasn't died. Well, you're lucky you don't have to worry about menopause, so I still have to worry about it because, you know, I'm trying to get this Olympics over as quick as I can.

MORGAN: See, and I see the ruthless streak in you.

(LAUGHTER)

TORRES: There's a little. I try to hide it a little bit.

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: I've been told about this. You just have this steely little side, beneath the sunny smile, the yellow sweater, there's this little ice maiden wanting to crush younger models.

TORRES: It might be in there somewhere.

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: How excited are you about London?

TORRES: You know, I'm very excited. It's been rough. I -- after the Olympics, I've had a couple surgeries, one big one in my knee, a reconstructive knee surgery.

MORGAN: I hate to tell, I mean, at this age, this is what happens.

TORRES: You know what, I --

MORGAN: Our bodies begin to collapse.

TORRES: It does. I mean, this is -- I mean, my knee surgery, obviously, had to do with my training, but I get out of bed and I'm like, oh, my God, my back's out right now. You know, and I'm going through that phase where it's not because of training. I'm just middle aged.

MORGAN: One of the main reasons, I guess you're competing again here -- and this may not be the end of a journey; who knows, Rio? (Inaudible)? Why not?

TORRES: No.

MORGAN: Nothing could stop you.

TORRES: No, no, no. Seriously, like I will be in menopause by Rio --

MORGAN: No one will believe you, even if you say you won't do it in Rio. No one's going to believe you. The point I was going to make was the reason I think you're so determined to win in London is in Beijing, you lost by a hundredth of a second. Watch this little clip of what you said about this. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TORRES: I am so competitive I can't not think about it. It's always going to bother me for the rest of my life. That's just the way I'm built. I'm upset that I lost by a hundredth of a second.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

MORGAN: I mean, watch. That's it.

TORRES: It's probably quicker than that.

MORGAN: It's even faster.

TORRES: I mean, when you watch this video, it actually looks like I won. Like what the heck.

MORGAN: Well, look, and that's the picture there.

TORRES: Yes.

MORGAN: You're on the right. You look like you're winning. What happened in that last --

TORRES: I don't know.

MORGAN: -- hundredth of a second, you just give up?

TORRES: No, I never give up.

(LAUGHTER)

TORRES: Oh, my gosh. You know, my coach, what he told me is you swam the perfect race. But maybe you just didn't touch the touchpad hard enough. And so actually what happened after that is I swam a relay 30 minutes later. And after he told me that, I touched the wall, and I broke my thumb and tore the ligament off my bone.

MORGAN: Seriously?

TORRES: Yes. People don't know that but that's what happened after he had told me I didn't touch the wall hard enough.

MORGAN: You really broke your thumb hitting a wall?

TORRES: I broke my thumb in the next race, yes.

MORGAN: Because you were so full of rage?

TORRES: I was just -- I can't -- I couldn't believe that I lost by a touch.

MORGAN: How hard are you hitting that wall to break your thumb?

TORRES: I didn't know I did it. I think it was just my coach in my head, just telling me that I didn't touch the wall hard enough. So the next race, I guess I tried to prove that I could touch the wall hard enough.

MORGAN: Is there any experience in the world better than winning a gold medal at the Olympics, that you've enjoyed yourself?

TORRES: Having my daughter.

MORGAN: Other than that.

TORRES: Other than that? No. It's just --

MORGAN: No man?

(LAUGHTER)

TORRES: That's a good question. Now I'm blushing.

MORGAN: No, if I could say to you, look, Dara, here's the deal. You can have the best sex of your life all over again right now or Olympic gold in London.

TORRES: God, you're killing me with that question.

MORGAN: Which one are you going to take?

TORRES: Oh, my gosh.

MORGAN: I think it's the ultimate question.

TORRES: OK. My fluff answer will be the gold medal.

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: Do you mean that?

(LAUGHTER)

TORRES: You know what, I do, because I'm --

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: I don't think you do mean that, do you? You're actually thinking about something completely different.

TORRES: I know. You've got my mind all --

MORGAN: I've got your mind racing back to some -- I don't know, where are we going, a beach?

TORRES: Yes, something like that.

(LAUGHTER)

TORRES: No, you know, the thing is is that I earned this myself. So this is something that I've worked my whole entire life for. So I think that's what makes it so rewarding. MORGAN: I heard that all the young athletes come up to you in the American team, all the young turks, and you think they want to ask you about what's it like being on the podium and so on, and actually what really focuses their mind in the Olympic arena when you're all together is the multicolored condom allocation. Is that true?

TORRES: I'm going to have to shut my mouth more.

(LAUGHTER)

TORRES: Yes, you know, it's funny, so I always thought, well, I could be a big influence for the kids. They can come up to me and ask me questions about, you know, the Olympics and what to expect.

And one day at the 2000 Olympics, I got a knock on my door, and a bunch of the young teenagers come in, said, "Dara, Dara. We want to ask you a quick question."

I'm like, "Sure."

And we sit on my bed and they take out a magazine, I'm like what -- and it's folded to a page.

I'm like, "What magazine is that?"

And they're like, "Cosmo,"

I'm like, "OK."

And they said, "Look. Look here."

And they're pointing at it. "They say they have rainbow condoms in the Olympic Village."

I'm like, "You guys, seriously, that's what you want to know about?"

And they're like, "Yeah," and I'm like, "OK, it's true. Next?" You know?

MORGAN: See, I always quaintly assumed that when you get to that stage of the preparation, it's like boxers. You know, there's no hanky-panky. But from all I've been reading and hearing about from all the athletes I've interviewed, it's kind of relentless. It's like an explosion of rabbits in there.

TORRES: Well, it is, but it really does happen after the competition. Like people are really, really focused when they go. But you have to remember, you're with all these top athletes, best athletes in the world from every sport, and when they're done competing, the pressure's off. They want to go have fun.

MORGAN: So they're all magnificent physical specimens.

TORRES: Yes. And so why not, right?

(LAUGHTER)

TORRES: Of course, I never (inaudible) like that, but you know.

MORGAN: Didn't you have your eyes on anybody special this year after you -- say you win gold. Anyone on the American Olympic squad that you think?

TORRES: There are like --

MORGAN: You might be the lucky recipient of my joy?

TORRES: I'm as old as their mothers. There's no way that that's going to happen. Maybe a coach, but --

MORGAN: I don't think people who are watching this thinking she's over the hill in any sense.

TORRES: Yes, but most of them call me Mom.

MORGAN: Reaching your peak.

(LAUGHTER)

TORRES: I am at my peak.

MORGAN: Now, talking of peaks, I'm told that you have -- I have never seen this in the flesh, obviously, but I'm told that you have the greatest six-pack in the world. So after the break, I'm going to ask Dara Torres to show me the world's greatest six-pack live on air.

(MUSIC PLAYING)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MORGAN: I'm back with Olympic swimming champion Dara Torres. And I left you on a cliffhanger. Yours, which was that I had been told Dara had the greatest six-pack in the history of the female population, certainly. And we are about to establish whether that is true in a live televisual experiment. Dara? Stand please.

TORRES: Are we going to stand side by side and do it together?

MORGAN: No, we're not. I wouldn't inflict that on my viewers, but I would like to see the greatest six-pack in history.

Oh, my God. They weren't kidding, were they.

TORRES: It's OK.

MORGAN: You actually have no stomach.

TORRES: I do have a stomach.

MORGAN: It's gone.

You're 45 years old. TORRES: Forty-five, yes.

MORGAN: And you've had children.

TORRES: I have one child. Look, it's hidden in there, it's the loose skin.

MORGAN: OK, let's get to -- I mean, women watching this, falling over, saying how? How do you keep that six-pack looking like that?

TORRES: Well, people have to remember I do this for a living. So that's first and foremost is that I do this -- I work out every day. So I --

MORGAN: For how long?

TORRES: Probably between four and six hours.

MORGAN: You eat loads of ice cream, I was told.

Is that true?

TORRES: Where do you get your information from?

MORGAN: I've just done a very thorough research job on you.

TORRES: Gosh, I feel like you're like Big Brother watching me.

(LAUGHTER)

TORRES: Yes, I like ice cream. I'm trying to be better about my eating, because it's not as easy for me to recover right now. My biggest thing is recovery. I -- my problem is being able to swim three races to qualify, or being able to swim three races to win a medal.

MORGAN: Now tell me about your psychic friend, Bernard.

TORRES: Oh, Bernard, yes.

MORGAN: Bernard. I'm so sorry.

TORRES: I just went to him the other day.

MORGAN: Now he predicted you'd win gold at Beijing. So did you fire him?

TORRES: No, I -- he's great. He's pretty much been almost on with everything, just about. I mean --

MORGAN: What has he said about London?

TORRES: I don't like to share because I don't want to jinx anything.

MORGAN: Talk. You can trust me. TORRES: No. Yes.

MORGAN: It'll stay between us.

TORRES: It'll stay between us?

MORGAN: And hundreds of millions of people around the world.

TORRES: Yes.

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: What has he got right?

TORRES: He's gotten a lot right about my personal life.

MORGAN: Like what?

TORRES: Well, I -- well, OK. I remember I was having problems conceiving, and spent -- many years I tried, and he was correct about having a daughter and being able to --

MORGAN: Really?

TORRES: Yes, yes. So you know, it's one of those --

MORGAN: You were having trouble conceiving? He predicted you would have a daughter?

TORRES: Yes.

MORGAN: That's amazing.

TORRES: You know, he's predicted stuff about my coach, actually when he was sick and I don't know, it's just -- you know, I don't -- there's not a set schedule when I go to him, it's just when I feel like I need a little reassurance about something, I go to him.

MORGAN: So he's more like a kind of -- like a -- a lot what a life coach would do.

TORRES: A little bit, but he's a medium. I mean, he speaks --

MORGAN: Who do you talk to?

TORRES: Well, what you do is you go in there and he leaves the room, and you take a card, and you write down three questions that you want answered, and you write down three people that have passed away, and you sign and print your name.

And then so you ask what you want answered, and you can ask questions as it's going. But what he does is the people you have wrote who have passed away that are on your card, he speaks to them.

MORGAN: How extraordinary.

TORRES: It's pretty cool. I mean, it's amazing, because a lot of the stuff he says, there's no way he would know.

MORGAN: Which relatives, if you don't mind me asking?

TORRES: My dad.

MORGAN: Who've passed away?

TORRES: Yes, my dad, who passed away.

MORGAN: And you have, what, a conversation through this -- ?

TORRES: I don't have a conversation. Well, yes, here's an example. So I asked something, and my dad came in, and he started talking about how my dad only wants me to finish this last one, because he always wanted to see me with a family and, you know, have that come first.

And he's told that since I was like, you know, 21. I mean, exactly what my dad said is exactly what Bernard said. And it's just stuff that he wouldn't know --

MORGAN: That's gripping.

TORRES: Yes.

MORGAN: It's really gripping. And tell me about your checkered romantic life, because that's also quite --

TORRES: I didn't know it was checkered.

MORGAN: Well, you had two fairly quick-fire marriages.

TORRES: I did. The first two marriages I had didn't work out for various reasons, and when I got together with the father of my daughter, we were together for six years.

But I don't -- like it's one of those things where I don't know if I'll ever get married again, because I feel like the relationship has to just -- after having two failed marriages, I don't want another failed one. So it has to be perfect in order for me to --

MORGAN: Can anyone who's driven as much as you are to win, can you ever really be in a long long-term relationship? Or is the first love really in that water, winning, until that's done in your life, do you think you've got a chance of -- ?

TORRES: Well, I guess I'll find out in a few months.

MORGAN: Well, what do you think? I mean, do you feel that you're -- ?

TORRES: I feel like when I'm ready to move on, like my dad said, is be more family oriented and settle down.

MORGAN: The one last gold in London?

TORRES: I actually would just like to make the Olympic team. That's my goal right now. You know --

MORGAN: You will, won't you?

TORRES: I hope so. It -- you know --

(CROSSTALK)

MORGAN: They couldn't leave you out.

TORRES: It's -- well, it's not that I -- and they don't have a choice. I have to get first or second in my event. And the toughest thing for me is being able to swim it three times. If I just had one race and they say, OK, this race is it, you either get first or second and you go, I would be fine. It's being able to swim it two more times, is where my issue is.

MORGAN: You'll do it.

TORRES: Thank you.

MORGAN: I have every confidence, Dara.

TORRES: Go and --

MORGAN: You've done everything else.

TORRES: Go ask Bernard and see what he says.

(LAUGHTER)

MORGAN: Let's go and call him.

TORRES: Let's call him.

MORGAN: It's been a pleasure.

TORRES: It's so nice meeting you.

MORGAN: Best of luck. I hope to see you in London.

TORRES: Thank you very much.

MORGAN: Dara Torres, quite an inspiration to all us oldies.

Coming up, the latest bizarre twist in a missing child mystery. Has the killer of Etan Patz been found?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

RAY KELLY, NEW YORK POLICE COMMISSIONER: This evening the New York City Police Department is announcing the arrest of Pedro Hernandez, age 51, of Maple Shade, New Jersey, for the murder of Etan Patz. Hernandez confessed to choking Etan 33 years ago tomorrow in the basement of a bodega located at 448 West Broadway in Manhattan.

MORGAN: A bombshell development in one of the most infamous child abduction cases in history. Etan Patz was just 6 years old when he vanished from a street in Manhattan. That was in 1979. Tonight a man has confessed to the killing. He's in custody. It's a stunning turn of events. CNN's Susan Candiotti has the latest. Susan?

SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Thanks, Piers. This is stunning because we are learning from police that this man is confessing in a 31/2-hour long videotaped confession, saying that he is responsible for the death of Etan Patz so many years ago.

Here's how the police commissioner described the alleged confession.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KELLY: Hernandez described to the detectives how he lured young Etan from the school bus stop at West Broadway and Prince Street with the promise of a soda. He then led him into the basement of the bodega, choked him there and disposed of the body by putting it into a plastic bag and placing it into the trash.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CANDIOTTI: Now the man who has now allegedly confessed was only 19 years old at the basement. Apparently years ago he did tell relatives that he had, quote, "done something bad," according to police, and killed a boy in New York.

But it was only recently that a tipster just about a month ago called police and said, you'd better to talk to this man again after that basement was searched in Etan Patz' old neighborhood about a month ago.

It is expected that this man will be making a court appearance as early as Friday and when he will be formally charged by the district attorney. Back to you, Piers.

MORGAN: Susan, thanks very much. It's a stunning turn of events.

Lisa Cohen is the author of the book "After Etan: The Missing Child Case that Held America Captive."

Lisa, I mean, an extraordinary development after 33 years.

LISA COHEN, AUTHOR: It's extraordinary.

What do you make of it?

I don't know what to make of it, because frankly, I'd never heard of this man before today. I spent four years researching this. I produced stories on this over the years for 15, 20 years and never heard his name.

MORGAN: There are suggestions tonight that the police at least were aware of him at the time, but never viewed him as a serious suspect. His name is Pedro Hernandez, he worked in the area that Etan went missing.

You wrote a book about all this, particularly focusing, I think, on the family's nightmare. What do you think they'll be feeling tonight?

COHEN: Well, I've said over and over again that over 30 years, 33 years, they've just gone from one breaking case event to another breaking case event to another. And you know, over the years, they've just thought it was over, then it wasn't, thought it was over, then it wasn't. And I think they've really gotten to a place where they are going to wait and make sure that this isn't going to be just one more of those times.

MORGAN: Etan became one of the sort of poster boys for missing children, if you like, with the milk cartons. He wasn't the first, as people have mistakenly said over the years, but he became one of them.

As a result of what happened to him, a lot of people's lives, young children's lives, I guess, have been saved because of that campaign. Do you think that?

COHEN: I think that they have certainly gone very far down a road of being able to know how to track children. There were no systems in place when Etan went missing. There was no way for one state to know what another state was doing.

And so everything that has happened in increments over the years since Etan went missing has helped to be able to understand what we need to do when a child goes missing, within an hour, within 24 hours.

MORGAN: Certainly a fascinating case, and for anyone certainly in New York, they will never forget what happened to that little boy and you just hope for the family that they do get the closure they've been waiting for. Lisa, thank you very much.

COHEN: Thanks for having me.

MORGAN: We'll be right back with "Only in America."

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MORGAN: Well, tonight, "Only in America," what price charity? Police officers across the country do a wonderful job keeping the peace and enforcing the law.

But in Cleveland, one cop took leave of his senses. His common senses. The officer's target was this man, John Davis, and Davis was in his car when a figure on the roadside attracted his attention.

JOHN DAVIS: As I was pulling up over here at the intersection, there was a gentleman in a wheelchair holding a sign that -- "Love Jesus, need help," something to that nature.

MORGAN: This is a photograph of the paralyzed panhandler that Mr. Davis saw. He wanted to help him. So he pulled out a couple of dollars to make that man's day just go a little better than it was. DAVIS: I rolled it up longways, the money, to get it as far I could so I could reach it to the gentleman. And he touched it, it hit the ground. At that point, he bent over and he picked it up.

MORGAN: Now, watching Mr. Davis's generosity was a police officer. You might think he would thank him for this laudable exercise, but no, you'd be wrong.

DAVIS: Proceeds to tell me he's pulling me over for littering. Are you serious? He said, "I'm darned serious."

MORGAN: That's right. Mr. Davis was charged with littering because he tossed a couple of bucks at a needy, disabled man. A couple of bucks that might now cost him a fine of $500.

Apparently, Mr. Davis violated -- wait for this -- section number 613.06 of Cleveland's municipal codes, which is littering from a motor vehicle. His offense was listed as throwing paper out of a window. Money to panhandler. Serious crimes indeed. Mr. Davis understandably pretty unimpressed.

DAVIS: I don't mean any disrespect toward the police department at all. We need them. But I just wish that I didn't have to pay this ticket. I'd like to do it again but I'm petrified that I'm going to get a ticket.

MORGAN: The Cleveland Police Department is refusing to comment, so allow me to comment for them. This was a ridiculous incident that shames all decent police officers in America.

As for Mr. Davis who now knows the full meaning of that phrase, "No good deed goes unpunished," you keep donating your dollars to the needy in Cleveland and I'll pay your fines.

Next week I'll be taking some time off, but I bring you an all- star lineup of guest hosts. Starting Tuesday, the return of a television legend. Regis Philbin is in my shoes for a rare and exclusive interview with late-night king David letterman. Here's a preview.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REGIS PHILBIN, TV PERSONALITY: Have you had a favorite guest over the years besides me?

DAVID LETTERMAN, TV PERSONALITY: No, no. We have several. You, Brian Williams, Tom Brokaw, Bill Murray, Tom Hanks, people who really come and do a great job for us. But it's like a handful of people who are really, really strong. Really, really good.

PHILBIN: And that's nice to hear that I'm included.

LETTERMAN: Oh, you would be at the top of the list.

PHILBIN: Let me -- you know that Brian Williams wants your job.

LETTERMAN: Brian Williams can have my job.

PHILBIN: You don't think he's going to do the news for the rest of his life, do you?

LETTERMAN: No, but -- and he can have my job.

MORGAN: A fantastic encounter. You can't miss that.

And on Wednesday, a friend of the show, Bill Maher sits in with his guest, "Family Guy's" Seth McFarland and Lance Armstrong.

On Thursday, Donnie Deutsch will be here with "Today" show's host, the new multimillion-dollar superstar Matt Lauer, and Dr. Oz is his guest.

And the ultimate Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein wraps up the week on Friday with surprise celebrity guests, including a special message from Oprah Winfrey.

That's all for us tonight. "AC 360" starts now.