Return to Transcripts main page


Bill Clinton: "I'm Very Sorry"; Plug the Leaks; U.S. Wrestler Seeing Gold

Aired June 8, 2012 - 05:00   ET



BILL CLINTON, FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT: I'm very sorry about what happened yesterday.


ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: A CNN exclusive: Bill Clinton apologizing for stepping all over President Obama's economic message just five months from Election Day. We are taking a look at the fallout and the future for Clinton in the presidential campaign.

ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN, CNN ANCHOR: This is bizarre. Toss your caps into the air, and they might not come back. Amazing video of a funnel cloud crashing an outdoor graduation.

BANFIELD: And caught red-handed and red-faced. A robber literally getting sprayed and spanked. You're going to see it.

Good morning, everybody. I couldn't love this is one --


SAMBOLIN: I love that one, too.

BANFIELD: Bang, bang, don't come back.

It's nice to have you here. Hi there. I'm Ashleigh Banfield.

SAMBOLIN: And I'm Zoraida Sambolin. We are bringing you the news from A to Z.

It's 5:00 a.m. here in the East. So, let's get started for you.

Up first, Bill Clinton getting back on script and back in step with the White House at least for now. In an exclusive interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, the former president doing a lot of apologizing after praising Mitt Romney's sterling business record and suggesting he would be open to extending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy, a position directly at odds with President Obama.

Here's Clinton on full damage control yesterday on "THE SITUATION ROOM."

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) CLINTON: I'm very sorry about what happened yesterday. It was what I thought something had to be done on the fiscal cliff before the election. Apparently nothing has to be done until the first of the year. So, I think he should just stick with his position.


SAMBOLIN: Jake Sherman, "Politico's" congressional reporter, joining us live now from Washington this morning.

Nice to see you.

Bill Clinton is a skilled politician. But this is the second time as we mentioned that he has this little gaffe. Do you really think this is going to hurt the Obama administration?

JAKE SHERMAN, POLITICO CONGRESSIONAL REPORTER: It's not going to hurt them in a real sense, but the problem is Republicans have seized on this comment. It's already come out of Clinton's mouth, they talked about it on Capitol Hill, and as President Clinton mentioned, there's a huge mess of fiscal issues coming to a head at the end of the year. And Republicans and Democrats on Capitol Hill away from the election are already positioning themselves for it.

So, to the extent that Clinton has already come out and said this it, even though he's retracted that, that quote lingers throughout. For a campaign to have such a prominent figure like President Clinton saying things like this is a problem.

SAMBOLIN: There's some conspiracy theorists out there that believe this is not so much a mistake. That perhaps he's doing this on purpose, getting back for that very contentious 2008 race with his wife. What do you make of that?

SHERMAN: You got to love the conspiracy theorist, but he's done a ton of events for President Obama. He was in New York with President Obama this week raising money. He wants nothing more than President Obama to get elected, and said that in an interview with Wolf. So, I think that's a little bit overstated.

President Clinton, as he said in that interview with Wolf Blitzer, is a guy who speaks his mind. He doesn't feel like he has to say bad things about somebody just to get his point across. So, this is kind of Clinton being Clinton as we say. I mean, this is the way he conducts himself.

But I really don't think this has anything to do with 2008.

SAMBOLIN: Let's focus a little bit on that saying bad things about someone -- because he said that Romney had a stellar career as a businessman. Let's listen to a little bit about that and then I want to talk about it.


CLINTON: I am strongly committed to his re-election. I just regret that -- you know, my instinct, though, you know me. I don't think I should have to say bad things about Governor Romney personally to disagree with him politically. The fact that I was complementary of his success as a businessperson doesn't mean that I think that he should be elected and President Obama shouldn't.


SAMBOLIN: President Bill Clinton has a very high favorability rating as an ex-president. I'm going to put this up here. It's 66 percent. So do you think going forward that the Obama campaign is going it to continue to use him, or are they a little fearful that sometimes he speaks his mind too much?

SHERMAN: I think they're going to continue to use him because he's such a huge draw. As those numbers showed, he's incredibly popular. But what he did here is undermine the central message of President Obama's re-election campaign, which is that Mr. Romney's work at Bain Capital does not qualify him to be president, is not good business and good for the country.

Now, President Clinton said in that interview with Wolf that it he believes he was a good businessman and that this is the reality. He doesn't feel like he needs to say bad things about Mr. Romney. The president does, so that puts them in direct conflict.

But he is going to get back on message. It's clear that once these guys, all these surrogates when they say thing that don't necessarily jive with the campaign message, they get quickly back on message. That's what we've seen with President Clinton.

SAMBOLIN: All right: Jake Sherman, Politico's congressional reporter -- thank you so much for joining us this morning.

SHERMAN: Thank you.

BANFIELD: It's five minutes past 5:00 on the East Coast.

They don't agree on much, but Republicans and Democrats on Congress are agreeing to stop the intelligence leaks. The White House is denying any accusations that classified data was leaked to journalists in an effort to enhance the president's terror-fighting image.

Senator John McCain isn't buying that, though. He told Anderson Cooper last night the situation screams for a special prosecutor.


SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: I don't think there's any doubt that this is one of the most egregious breaches of national security in recent memory. The director of national intelligence, General Clapper, said and he's been in it for 30, 40 years, whatever, and he says it's the worst he's ever seen.

SEN. DIANNE FEINSTEIN (D), CALIFORNIA: This has to stop. When people say they don't want to work with the United States because they can't trust us to keep a secret, that's serious. (END VIDEO CLIP)

BANFIELD: The FBI is investigating these leaks. They include details about covert operations against al Qaeda and against Iran.

Supreme Court observers excited and waiting for two huge decisions. The president's health care reforms and Arizona's crackdown on illegal immigration. But according to a new poll, Americans have already made up their minds on these two. Three out of four favor Arizona's immigration law that requires police to check the status of anybody they detain or arrest if they suspect that that person is in the country illegally.

And when voters were asked about how they feel about the president's 2010 health care reform -- some people call it Obamacare, others call it health care reforms -- 51 percent say they oppose it while 43 percent favor it. We should mention that 13 percent of those people that oppose it oppose it because they say it doesn't go far enough.

SAMBOLIN: Congratulations class of 2012. You may now run for cover.

Students at Absegami High School in New Jersey got a very special graduation when a funnel cloud appeared during their ceremony. Take a look at this. What's really amazing here -- you can see students still walking while the cloud looms in the background, and then came the rain and the hail.

While the video looks scary, most people cleared out before things got really bad there.

BANFIELD: More than 2,000 former NFL players are joining a mega lawsuit against the league. It's combining more than 80 different cases into one single federal lawsuit. That lawsuit accusing the league of a deliberate plan to cover up links between concussions on the field and permanent brain injuries.

In a statement, the NFL says it has long made player's safety a priority and continues to do so. Any allegation the NFL sought to mislead players has no merit.

SAMBOLIN: And for those who think LeBron James can't win the big one. You might want to think again. The King putting up 45 points a and pulling down 15 rebounds last night to lead the Miami Heat over the Boston Celtics 98-79. Game seven is tomorrow night. It's in South Beach.

The winner will face the Oklahoma City Thunder in the NBA finals starting Tuesday.

Would you have thought this would have happened for Boston Celtics fans?

BANFIELD: Who would have thunk?

Time for a sport of a different color. It's 34 years since horseracing has had a Triple Crown winner, and that could all change tomorrow. The horse named "I'll Have Another" is the odds-on favorite to win the Belmont Stakes tomorrow and then make history, apparently 11 times in the past over the last 14 years. Horses have come to the Belmont with a chance to do it, having won two before, but no go, failing to win that last coveted race. The Triple Crown winner, last time around it was the horse called Affirmed back in 1978.

And we're going to take you live to Belmont Park in the next hour to talk more about this.

And if you're heading out the door, set your DVR for "STARTING POINT" with Soledad O'Brien, because she's going to be interviewing the owner of "I'll Have Another" at 7:50 this morning.

SAMBOLIN: If ever someone deserved a spanking, it might be this guy, caught trying to rob a convenience store. Take a look.

We're going to have much more for you when we come back.


BANFIELD: Hello. It's 12 minutes now past 5:00 on the East Coast. Nice to have you with us this morning.

Let's get you up to date on our top stories. Christine Romans has been busy compiling them for us.

Hi there.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Good morning to you. Happy Friday, ladies.

Bill Clinton trying to get on message and back in step with the White House this morning. Speaking exclusively with CNN's Wolf Blitzer, the former president apologizing for remarks he made about the Bush era tax cuts that seem to be at odds with President Obama. Mr. Clinton didn't know the deadline hits next year when he suggested that cuts for the wealthy should be extended before the election.

New this morning: high school shooting suspect T.J. Lane is set to be arraigned this afternoon. Lane is charged with killing three students and injuring three or others in a shooting spree last month at Chardon High School in Ohio. A judge has ruled 17-year-old Lane can be tried as an adult. If convicted, he faces a maximum penalty of life in prison without parole.

Seventies rock star Bob Welch an early member of Fleetwood Mac found dead in his Nashville home. Police say he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chest. Welch played guitar with Fleetwood Mac from 1971 until 1974. The biggest solo hit were "Sentimental Lady" and "Ebony Eyes."

Bob Welch was 66 years old.

The U.S. Transportation Department making a new $2.4 million push to stop what it is calling the epidemic of distracted driving. It will involve expanded police enforcement and a news and media blitz of the dangers. It says texting and driving are responsible for 3,000 deaths a year with teen drivers and young drivers the highest risk.

All right. Two robbers get the surprise of their lives when they attempted to hold up this convenience store. Not only did they get faces full of bear spray, one guy was bent over the registers and spanked over and over again.

To add insult to injury, the police allowed the spanking as part of the citizen's arrest. The guy was charged with armed robbery.

SAMBOLIN: OK. This may make it to favorite video of the year.

BANFIELD: Who is that girl that takes the boots to him?

ROMANS: She's just trying to help apparently. This is in the crime doesn't pay category.

This is the smoking gun's dumbest criminals, and they're lucky their hoops are up, because otherwise that would be mortifying to them for the rest of their lives.

SAMBOLIN: Where was this? Did you say bear spray?

ROMANS: I know. I call it pepper spray.

BANFIELD: You know what, the difference is? Bear spray shoots a long way away, and you don't know that to get near you. Pepper spray is small and up close. But bear sprays 20 feet.

SAMBOLIN: Thank you, thank you.

Fifteen minutes past the hour.

Meteorologist Rob Marciano, I hear it's the warmest spring on record. Is that true?

ROB MARCIANO, AMS METEOROLOGIST: For the U.S., and a number of cities including New York and D.C. back through Chicago as well, their warmest spring in 50 years. LaGuardia specifically over 130 years. So, remarkable stuff there.

And this comes on the heels, as you know, of a very warm winter. When we talk spring in meteorology, we include April -- May, April, and March. Those three months. Even though we haven't hit the first day of summer yet, spring for us is over.

You talk about the West Coast and Pacific Northwest specifically, boy, they haven't smelled much mountain sway of spring, 57 degrees expected for Seattle, 59 degrees in Portland, but 80 in New York, 85 degrees in D.C., here comes your warmth.

We have an average or slightly below average the past few days. But now, the temperatures are going to be on the increase for the next couple. That doesn't rule out the risk of seeing a thunderstorm or two especially across the northern tier.

High pressure in control across the Mid-Atlantic States. But the Gulf Coast will see showers. Traveling towards Houston or New Orleans, there's a threat for rain today. Denver again after a rough two days ago, yesterday and last night was no small shakes especially east of Denver.

One, two, three spots of potential severe weather today, notice they're all across the northern tier, North Dakota and parts of the U.P. of Michigan, and upstate New York and northern New England, that's when you know we're starting to get closer to summer and warmer temperatures move the jet stream farther to the north.

The Belmont Stakes -- 75 degrees, a slight chance of showers for the big -- at post time tomorrow.


SAMBOLN: I'm going, and I'm going to be outside. I'm a little worried about that.

BANFIELD: Do a little hat.

MARCIANO: What do you do at the track? You play at the odds, right? Figure about a 30 percent chance of showers. That's a pretty good chance it will be dry.

BANFIELD: Isn't that what you do for a living, play the odds, baby?

MARCIANO: That's right. You just go there, and we'll have another, I guess. Good luck.

BANFIELD: Rob, you're awesome. Will you do a repeat of this in a little bit?

MARCIANO: Yes, sure.

BANFIELD: That means you can't go home early. Thank you, Rob.

It's 17 minutes past 5:00.

Getting an early read on local news making national headlines for you. This is before they're off the presses folks.

"The Hickory Daily Record" is reporting that a letter containing white powder was sent to that North Carolina church where the pastor told the church members there that gays should be kept inside an electric fence. Emergency hazmat crews were called, and the person who opened the envelope is OK today. The FBI is certainly looking into this one.

SAMBOLIN: And Alex Tanney, the trick shot quarterback, finished his first practice with the Kansas City Chiefs. The coaches are told by "Kansas City Star" they are impressed.

Tanney earned his trick shot nickname from a YouTube video that you probably watch. It shows him throwing a football, to a window, into a moving car, and similar feats from great distances. It's been viewed more than 2 1/2 million times. BANFIELD: And for an expanded look at all the top stories, you can just head on over to our blog. It's easy to do, Everything you need to know is all there.

We have a lot more coming up, too. Make sure you check your 401(k).

SAMBOLIN: Are you feeling any richer today? You should, if the first quarter numbers are true. Christine Romans will explain that, coming up.


BANFIELD: Twenty-two minutes now past 5:00. Minding your business this morning. Concerns about the debt crisis in Europe. I feel like a broken record.

Driving markets down again this morning. Yesterday, the Dow eking out gains at the NASDAQ, closing lower. S&P 500 down wee bit, almost flat actually.

SAMBOLIN: So, let's bring in Christine Romans to talk about this new report on household net worth.

ROMANS: Good morning.

Well, do you feel richer? Do you guys feel richer?


ROMANS: I don't either. So, OK, the first quarter of the Federal Reserve showing that household net worth jumped by the most in the first quarter since the financial crisis, $2.8 trillion total, so a big jump in net worth probably driven by the stock market, among other things, but that could have cooled a little bit more recently. We'll closely watch household net worth numbers.

But, again, feeling a little richer in the first three quarters of the year. We still have $4 trillion to go, though, to recoup the loss net worth from the financial crisis. So, that's the big cloud of the silver lining.

BANFIELD: That's why we have headlines that the "Wall Street Journal" rally snags whiplash this week.

ROMANS: I know. It's a lot of whiplash this week. You've got Europe. You've got the U.S. You've got jobs and all this talk about global stimulus by central banks. We watch that.

I'll talk about Facebook this morning, too. This is an interesting story. Facebook is so -- a couple of things here. The stock now is cheaper than his age, than Mark Zuckerberg's age. It keeps going down.

BANFIELD: Low blow.

ROMANS: The Facebook is the real estate around the Menlo Park area is going up, up, up as Facebook stock is going down, down, down.


ROMANS: Here's why, because Silicon Valley is really a hotbed for new companies and innovation. And if you look at how it's doing, you can see that there are all these $2 million properties popping right around the headquarters in Menlo Park. Current Bay Area home values are 15 times the regular sort of median home value in the United States.

Look at those big yellow round spears that you can see on that graphic. Those are all $2 million home values or higher right around the headquarters.

BANFIELD: Is that a lag, because expectations were so high that all of these new millionaires will look for real estate and it hasn't sorted itself out?

ROMANS: It is sorting itself out. It is sorting itself out and the home values are going up, up, up, because there are a lot of new millionaires for a lot of different companies and not just Facebook around there. And if you look, you can see one house around there, one house Menlo Park. We're going to show you.

You can see one house, how much it will buy you elsewhere around the country. Can you see that?

BANFIELD: I can't see a monitor close enough. I'm sorry.

ROMANS: It's like three houses in Seattle. It's like nine and a half houses in Las Vegas, you can buy for the price in one house in Menlo Park. In Chicago, it's five houses, Detroit you could by 24 houses in Detroit for the cost of one house in Menlo Park. That's the Facebook effect, if you will, on real estate.

BANFIELD: By the way, when do you start saying buy Facebook because it's on the dip?

ROMANS: There was a good story from Paul Annika (ph) yesterday where they said the case to buy Facebook. I'll get that story out. It's showing fundamentals of why to buy Facebook.

IPOs are risky. Trying to sort out what the outlook will be for the company, but the stock keeps going down.

BANFIELD: All right, Christine. Thank you.

It's 25 minutes now past 5:00 a.m. on the East Coast. Get on up.

A prominent Republican is saying I'm backing Mitt Romney but he's admitting that somebody else is really still his first choice, and it will make complete sense when you find out who we're talking about in a moment.

BANFIELD: And if you're leaving the house right now, you can watch us anytime on your desktop or your mobile phone. Just go to (COMMERCIAL BREAK)


WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: The Republicans weren't disagreeing with it.


SAMBOLIN: A CNN exclusive. All apologies. Former President Bill Clinton telling our Wolf Blitzer he's very sorry for going off message with five months until Election Day. But did the apology do even more damage to President Obama?


ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): But did the apology do even more damage to President Obama?

ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): A high speed chase ends when a drug suspect slams into a school bus that is in service with children on board. The video is remarkable.

SAMBOLIN: And this twitter handle is all I see is gold. He's got the tools, the talent, and he certainly has the confidence. We're talking to American wrestler, Jordan Burroughs, about his amazing record as he heads to the London summer games. Saying, he has confidence is an understatement.


SAMBOLIN (on-camera): Welcome back to EARLY START. We're happy you're with us. I'm Zoraida Sambolin.

BANFIELD (on-camera): Good morning, everybody. I'm Ashleigh Banfield. Thirty minutes now past the hour, which means wake up and time to get up, starting your day with this.

Bill Clinton, that apology, let's go back there, shall we? It's almost like an apology tour. In an exclusive interview with CNNs Wolf Blitzer, the former president is insisting that he regrets comments that he made earlier this week when he suggested that he would be open to extending the Bush era tax cuts, a position directly at odds with President Obama.

Mr. Clinton offering a mea culpa on the "Situation Room" along with his explanation. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BILL CLINTON, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Yes, I'm very sorry about what happened yesterday. It was what I thought something had to be done on the fiscal cliff before the election. Apparently, nothing has to be done until the first of the year, so I think he should just stick with his position.


BANFIELD: He should just stick with his position, and that's what the president is saying. Jake Sherman is a congressional reporter for "Politico." He's live in Washington this morning. Hey, Jake.


BANFIELD: I'm well. But boy, oh, boy, there are lots to talk about or is there? I mean, honestly, this seems to be all the buzz. I got to question for you. This is a man who is considered to be one of the sharpest tools in the shed when it comes to politics. The guy who admittedly spends around two hours a day, studying the economy.

Could he really just have made a mistake on the dates of when those tax cuts actually needed to be decided upon?

SHERMAN: Far be it for me to get inside Bill Clinton's head, but I will say one thing. I mean, he's trying to say that he thought the tax rates needed to be extended before the election. And I'm not sure of anybody who thinks that. But what this does is highlight how kind of interesting President Obama's campaign strategy is.

He is running on higher taxes, and that is extremely rare in today's political climate. So, what the president says is, listen, don't hike taxes on the rich. What's getting lost in this argument is that there's really no disagreement. Republicans and Democrats want to keep taxes low on most Americans.

The sticking point is the people at 250,000 and above. So, what President Clinton said was don't raise taxes on anybody, which is kind of what a lot of people are saying during an election year. So, it does highlight how unique Obama's message is.

BANFIELD: So, we're into the layers of this story, but as a layman, I just want to throw this out there and get your reaction. I don't know how long you've been recovering politics or how long you've sort of been mired in the American theme, but isn't it a bit embarrassing that it's just fine to suggest this in the open that, oh, no, no, no, this needs to be dealt with after the election? Americans hate hearing this stuff.

SHERMAN: It is unbelievable on Capitol Hill, which, as you mentioned, I cover. They are really not doing anything. They've kind of conceded that they are not going to do any real work on any of the huge fiscal issues that come into play at the end of the year.

BANFIELD: This isn't even a dirty secret anymore. Like, it's OK to come out and say this all the time.

SHERMAN: It's remarkable. Taxes go up on every American at the end of the year, huge cuts to the Pentagon, a whole mess of provisions expire, and Congress is going to wait until the last six weeks of the year to get this done which is, as you mentioned, kind of repugnant.

BANFIELD: It's nauseating, I got to be honest. As a voter, it is nauseating. And I do recall, you know, President Obama caught an open mic with the Russian president saying, you know, let's table this until after the election. I got some wiggle room. And everybody freaked out about that. This is exactly the same thing.

SHERMAN: That's right. And, politicians are not ones to be very courageous when their job is on the line. So, I think that's what you're seeing.

BANFIELD: OK. So, talk about courage here. I want to throw up the favorability polls for the former president. I always think they go up the longer you've been out of office, but I can prove it wrong by this poll as Jimmy Carter is only around 54 percent. But look at that, Bill Clinton leading the pack at 66 percent favorability.

You would think that's a huge piece of arsenal if you're looking at, you know, going into the next five months of campaigning. And yet, we've had this one week of, some might say gaffes, others might say the media has made this far bigger than they really are. How courageous does the Obama campaign really need to be to suggest, look, we need Bill Clinton as much as we can have him no matter what?

SHERMAN: People love Bill Clinton. And, what Obama loves a lot more than Bill Clinton, perhaps, is the money he could bring in. He has a huge network of donors, and you have to also recall that these donors were Hillary Clinton supporters. So, Bill Clinton kind of brings them along, which is important.

And it's important to keep in mind. And that's one of the reasons. I mean, campaigns cost money, and Bill Clinton helps President Obama bring in that money, which is so important, especially on the heels of Mitt Romney outraising President Obama.

BANFIELD: Got to admit, it's not just money. It's the likability thing, too and the message.

SHERMAN: That's true. That's absolutely true.

BANFIELD: Like he knows how to talk. He talks and it's like you get wiggle eyes, you know? You get stuck (ph) right into the camera that he's staring at.

SHERMAN: Important to also remember that the big knock on Obama is he's kind of cool and disconnected, and President Clinton has never been accused of that. President Clinton is the guy who could connect to anybody, who could talk to anybody, shake anybody's hand.

That's the big favorability points for President Clinton is that he is a guy who's just a regular guy able to connect, will put his arm around you and tell you he feels your pain.

BANFIELD: I feel your pain. Hey, Jake, you're great. I love your writing. Can you stick around for the next hour?

SHERMAN: Absolutely.

BANFIELD: We'll do this again, but we'll talk about something else, too. And I think about this for the next hour, bipartisanship, the slightest whiff of it. You know, President Clinton suggesting a little bipartisanship, handing out the sterling record to Mitt Romney, and all of a sudden, everybody freaks out. I want to talk about what that means for today's age in politics.

SHERMAN: Absolutely.

BANFIELD: Jake Sherman, thank you.

SHERMAN: Thanks.

SAMBOLIN: Thirty-six minutes past the hour. Even though his father is still technically in the race, Rand Paul is backing Mitt Romney. The Kentucky senator insists his dad, Ron, is still his first choice, but now that it is clear Romney is the nominee, Rand Paul says the former Massachusetts governor is best suited to rebuild the economy.


SEN. RAND PAUL, (R) KENTUCKY: I do want someone who's been good at managing businesses that have been in failure and trying to turn them around. Right now, I'd consider our government to be a failed business, and so, I think Governor Romney would be precisely the person I would want.


SAMBOLIN: Paul's endorsement could help Romney with Tea Party voters. Romney says he is honored to have his endorsement.

BANFIELD: Protests over a same-sex ceremony at a U.S. army base. An army chaplain at (INAUDIBLE) in Louisiana performed a private religious ceremony for a female soldier and her partner. Louisiana congressman, John Fleming, wasn't pleased.

He said the ceremony is too much like a same-sex marriage, which the state outlaws. And now, he is calling for new legislation to ban same-sex ceremonies on military facilities.

SAMBOLIN: Two Olympic swimmers from Australia are in hot water for posting pictures of themselves on Facebook, posing with guns. Take a look. Nick D'Arcy and Kenrick Monk took the photos in a California gun shop while training for the London games. Australian swimming officials have ordered them to remove the pictures.

They've compiled -- or complied, excuse me, and insist they never meant to offend anyone. And they say they were just having some fun.

BANFIELD: You win some and you lose some. That's really life for most of us, right?


BANFIELD: Apparently not for one of these two guys. Take a close look. Our next guest, a champion wrestler and win is all he knows how to spell by this point. We're going to talk about him -- we're going to talk with him about his dreams of Olympic gold. Take a good look at that face. You're going to be seeing a lot of it. It's coming up next.


SAMBOLIN: Somebody just say hello to sunrise over Central Park. Good morning to you, New York. It is 64 degrees right now. A little bit later, we're going to get all the way up to 80 degrees.

So, the 2012 summer Olympics in London is just 49 days away, and an unlikely support, U.S. men's wrestling is getting some very serious hype. That is because world champion freestyle wrestler, Jordan Burroughs, who qualified for the men's freestyle team last month, has gone undefeated since 2009, and many say Jordan is the United States' best chance at bringing home Olympic gold.

Jordan will celebrate his 24th birthday during this year's game, and he is here right now. Quite a youngster, you are. You have been undefeated since 2009. There is a lot of hype around you bringing home a gold medal. How do you feel about that?

JORDAN BURROUGHS, MEMBER OF 2012 U.S. OLYMPIC WRESTING TEAM: I'm just embracing the pressure right now. You know, for me, I put a high standard on myself. So, I expect to win every time I step on the mat. I'm excited to have the opportunity in London.

SAMBOLIN: Well, apparently, a lot of people expect you to win. I asked you how you felt about Zeke Jones, and what did you say?

BURROUGHS: He's a great coach. You know, he's been there for the last year since I've stepped on to the international scene. You know, so he's always in my corner through my world championship, (INAUDIBLE) and all that stuff. So, --

SAMBOLIN: So, you respect this man. He's a USA wrestling freestyle coach, and this is what he says about you. He's got world class blazing speed. He has great setup routines. He's got unbelievable confidence. He can attack from multiple directions. He can cover multiple distances. He can do things that most guys can't." Don't you feel a lot of pressure when somebody like that is saying that about you?

BURROUGHS: I don't know if I'm as cool as he makes me sound.

SAMBOLIN: Well, it sounds pretty cool. But you didn't have a lot of role models growing up in wrestling, so who was your role model? Who guided you through this journey?

BURROUGHS: Definitely my parents. You know, my parents always worked hard, keep food on the table, you know? So, they were big motivators for me and inspired me to do what I love, you know? So, I get paid every day to do what I love. And, I just love this for the rest --

SAMBOLIN: Where did the love come from?

BURROUGHS: Just an early start, you know? I've been wrestling since I was five years old, you know, so, I'm extremely competitive and been doing it for a long time. I was the first person my family to wrestle, so never had a lot of pressure on me. So, everything I did was just -- is for the love of sport.

SAMBOLIN: You have the literal scars to prove it, right? So, I want everybody to take a look at this ear. It's called cauliflower ear.


BURROUGHS: It's bad. It's bad. Check it out.

SAMBOLIN: That is incredible. So, you know, that is kind of what happens when you end up being a world class wrestler. I can (INAUDIBLE) all wrestlers, right? That is just kind of --

BURROUGHS: Almost everyone. Ninety percent of us have it.

SAMBOLIN: Are you planning to tweet at the Olympics?

BURROUGHS: Of course. I'm always on Twitter.

SAMBOLIN: OK. Your Twitter handle is @alliseeisgold. The same website URL. Some have accused you of being a little overconfident. How do you feel about that?

BURROUGHS: I mean, a lot think mistake my confidence for cockiness. But, it's my confidence that's helped me win to this point, you know? So, every time I step out there on the mat, I expect to win. I'm extremely confident from getting success (ph), and hopefully continue to do that in London.

SAMBOLIN: Where does your focus come from? Because this is a sport where you really do have to do that.

BURROUGHS: I have a lot mental preparation drills I do. You know, not only am I working hard physically, but I'm working hard mentally. You know, so, there's going to be a number of distractions going on throughout the Olympic games, referees, my opponents, the Olympic village. So, I'm just trying to stay mentally focused to win that gold.

SAMBOLIN: You just recently had an exhibition match yesterday, right, at Times Square. It was against a Russian opponent. You won that match in 28 seconds? Good gracious. Are you nervous about having a crowd around you?

BURROUGHS: No, it's awesome. You know, it's a huge stage, probably the biggest venue I've ever been a part of and a great even, you know? So, I wanted to give the crowd a show and give them something to cheer about. It was awesome.

SAMBOLIN: OK. I'm going to ask you a crazy question. Are you bringing home Olympic gold?

BURROUGHS: Of course.

SAMBOLIN: Of course. But what I really want to know is in that final match, in how many seconds do you think you're bringing home Olympic gold?

BURROUGHS: I don't know. This one might be a little bit tougher. This one might take a whole couple periods, whole two periods.

SAMBOLIN: A whole two periods. All right. Jordan Burroughs, we wish you all the luck in the world. We certainly hope you do win, and when you do, will you bring it back here so that you can show it off?

BURROUGHS: Of course. Show it off to you, guys.

SAMBOLIN: All right. Good luck to you.

BURROUGHS: Thank you.

SAMBOLIN: Ashleigh, back to you.

BANFIELD: Good luck, Jordan. We'll be rooting for you back here.

It's 45 minutes now past the hour. Let's get you up to date on the top stories. Christine Romans has been busy working on all of that rest this morning. Hi there.



ROMANS (voice-over): Bill Clinton says he's fully committed to seeing Barack Obama re-elected as president, spoke exclusively to our own Wolf Blitzer. The former president apologizing for comments he made earlier this week when he suggested the Bush tax cuts be temporarily extended for everyone before the November election.

Mr. Clinton claiming he didn't know that tax cuts expired after the election, and that President Obama should stick to his position.

The body of suspected killer, Adam Mays (ph), is now at the University of Tennessee, and it will be used for science. His family would not claim his body. Mays was wanted for kidnapping a Tennessee mother and her three daughters and then killing the mother and one of the girls. Mays shot himself in the head when the FBI cornered him in the woods.

Singer, Lauryn Hill, slapped with federal criminal charges for tax evasion. Prosecutors say she failed to pay taxes on nearly $2 million in income from 2005 to 2007. If convicted, Hill faces up to three years in prison, $300,000 in fines. A wild police chase ending in a school bus crash. Police in Louisiana were chasing a drug suspect in a pick-up truck when a guy ran a stop sign and slammed into a school bus. That school bus had 40 children inside. The suspect then ditched his truck, ran through a neighborhood, hid under a house.

He was eventually caught, charged with criminal negligence. Fifteen kids ages four to 16 were injured, but thankfully, they're all expected to be OK.

Just weeks after being exonerated on rape charges, Brian Banks (ph) is making an impression on the NFL Seattle Seahawks. The former high school football star had a tryout with the team yesterday. Afterwards, the team was so impressed they invited him to attend the Seahawks minicamp next week.

Banks spent five years in prison, five more as a registered sex offender before his accuser admitted that she lied and is prompting athlete --


BANFIELD: Remember that, Christine, how it all came out on Facebook. She reached out to him and said let's meet, and he wired himself and got her to admit.

ROMANS (on-camera): An amazing story. An amazing story.

SAMBOLIN: I'm so glad to see that somebody is giving him a chance. Fantastic.

BANFIELD: I still want to -- I want to find out whether there's going to be a prosecution of her, though.

ROMANS: I was thinking the same thing. And let's check on that to see if they've decided whether to charge her or not.

BANFIELD: Do you know I asked him about that? And I said, do you want to see some justice there? Do you want to see her go down, you know, for these crimes. He said I'm not thinking about that at all. I am looking forward in life. Truly, he's a miraculous guy, really. Wish him the best. Thank you, Christine.

ROMANS: you're welcome. BANFIELD: Forty-seven minutes now past 5:00. Ever heard of those morning show wars? Usually when we talk about election campaigns heating up, we are not talking about morning show hotness like this. Take a look at the video.

You're not going to believe what you're about to see. Things get really ugly in the morning show. I'm going to tell you where this happened. Whoa! That's a woman that guy is hitting live on television. Talk about in a moment.


BANFIELD: Time to look at what's trending on the interweb at 51 minutes now past the hour.

MAC geeks hold yourself steady for a moment. There's a holy grail moment coming up here. MAC world is reporting that Sotheby's is going to auction off one of only six working Apple I personal computers next month. The auction has estimated this is going to go for about $180,000.

Can you imagine paying $180,000 for a computer that only really just looks like the guts of one of today's computers? It was designed and hand-built by Apple co-founder, Steve Wozniak. That was in 1976. All of this was Steve Jobs with handling the business end of everything. So, there's a lot of history to that artifact.

SAMBOLIN: For the $180,000?

BANFIELD: No, right?

SAMBOLIN: All right. She's heading to Harvard in September, even though she had nowhere too call home. This is a remarkable story. Dawn Logins (ph) received her diploma yesterday from Burns High School in Lawndale, North Carolina.

She is also a janitor at the school, graduating with straight A's, and she landed on a spot in Harvard's freshman class this fall, even though she was left homeless last year after her parents abandoned her before her senior year.

She said her parents were drug abusers who left her alone for long periods of time during her childhood. Many times, her house had no electricity or running water so she was forced to do her homework in the dark.

BANFIELD: You know, she was doing two hours of janitor work in the morning at that school and two hours of janitor work in the afternoon at that school.

SAMBOLIN: That is just remarkable.

BANFIELD: And she asked the school for candles so that she could do her homework.


BANFIELD: And she never finished her homework until two o'clock in the morning. And that girl, a full ride to Harvard -- I mean, full ride, not only that, but living expenses, too.

SAMBOLIN: I can't wait to see what she ends up being in the future.

BANFIELD: I want to work with her.

SAMBOLIN: Certainly, a determined young lady. That's right.

BANFIELD: Cradle of Democracy. Are you ready? Politicians getting physical in Greece. Wait until you see this.




BANFIELD: Yes, I don't understand them either, but this is a campaign turning ugly live on television, and here's what happens. Spokesperson for the extreme right wing Golden Dawn party lunged at two left wing female politicians, threw water, and smacked down the woman. Look at this live on television. Unbelievable right in the face. Bang! And another one. Bang!

SAMBOLIN: Oh, my goodness.

BANFIELD: And you only wonder if he will be charged with assault for this, because you know what, the evidence is? It's on tape. It all happened live on a mainstream morning talk show. Mainstream.

SAMBOLIN: That shows you how high the tensions are running in that country, right? This is horrific.

All right. Cutting of U.S. funding for a Pakistani version of "Sesame Street." The comedy channel, Stephen Cobert sounds off.


STEPHEN COLBERT, HOST, "THE COLBERT REPORT": You know, we have a complicated relationship with Pakistan. It's sort of a love/hate relationship. They love to hate us, and we hate that we have to love them.


COLBERT: Still, they're a valuable ally in the global war on terror. That's why I was so upset to hear about the end of a crucial national security operation in the heart of Islamabad -- Jim.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The U.S. embassy in Pakistan ending funding for a local version of "Sesame Street." And this comes amid reports of corruption at the $20 million project.


COLBERT: $20 million of corruption on "Sesame Street."


COLBERT: I believe Congress needs to hold hearings and ask them tough questions. What Elmo know and when Elmo know it?

It was our most successful deployment of a puppet in the region since Hamid Karzai. I hope this mess gets cleared up soon. Our Pakistani puppet program is too important for national security. Remember, that's how we found Osama Bin Laden. First, we asked the children of Abbottabad, who are the people in your neighborhood?


COLBERT: And it turns out one of these things was not like the others.




SAMBOLIN: That was clever.


BANFIELD: What Elmo know when he know it?


BANFIELD: It's almost six o'clock in the east. We have a live exclusive, as well, for you. We want to talk about former president, Bill Clinton, apologizing for going off message on the Obama campaign. Is it going to affect his relationship with the campaign or is it all just a bunch of hullabaloo? We'll get the details coming up.