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STARTING POINT WITH SOLEDAD O'BRIEN
Greece Holds Parliamentary Elections; Greece Likely to Stay in Eurozone; President's New Immigration Policy Creates Controversy; Obama In Mexico For G-20 Summit; Supreme Decisions Coming; Sandusky Child Sex Abuse Trial; Colorado Wildfire: State's Worst Ever; Heat Take 2-1 Lead In Finals; Barack Obama: The Story; Romney's Swing State Bus Tour; Iran Nuke Talks Resume; Facebook Settles Lawsuit; "Madagascar 3" Rocks On; "An American Story"
Aired June 18, 2012 - 07:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
SOLEDAD O'BRIEN, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, and good morning, everybody. There are signs that a market rally could be fading after some initial excitement over the results of the Greek national elections. The pro-Euro party, known as New Democracy Party, eked out a win by just 3.4 percent over Syriza, which is the party that wanted to leave the European Union. Now there will likely be a coalition government thanks to a 50 seat bonus that was given to the winning party, and an alliance between the new party and Pasok, another party. Together they will bring them to 162 seats in the 300 seat parliament. Matthew Chance live in Athens for us this morning. Good morning to you, Matthew.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Soledad, negotiations under way in the parliament building behind me here in Athens to try to forge some type of coalition. The party that won the election yesterday, New Democracy led by samaras, didn't get an absolute majority, only got 129 seats and needs 151 in the parliament to have a majority. So negotiations are continuing. He's got three days to try to bring together some of the other parties as well into a coalition.
It's going to get Greece out of this political and economic stalemate. The big point from the U.S. point of view and global point of view, samaras, the new democracy, supports the austerity measured imposed on Greece and not going to turn its back on its financial commitments and will for the most continue in the European single currency. Big sighs of relief around Europe and around the world because of that, Soledad.
O'BRIEN: Very big deadlines looming. Matthew, thank you very much.
Still ahead this morning, I'll talk to Ken Rogoff, the former head of the International Monetary Fund, the IMF. We'll be talking about what this really means. First, though, let's get an update on the top stories, and Christine Romans has that. Christine, good morning.
CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning to you, Soledad, thank you. Let's talk about Egypt's presidential election. The Muslim brotherhood declaring victory Mohammed Morsi in the first presidential vote since the uprising there. But official results aren't in. Millions of votes have to be counted. Even if Morsi does win, he may actually rule. Egypt's military leadership dissolved parliament and announced new measures giving it the right to limit the power of the president.
President Obama is in Los Cabos, Mexico, this morning for the kickoff of the G-20 summit. The World Bank calling on the leaders of the largest economies to stop buying time with short term fixes and implement deeper reforms to ease the global debt crisis.
Also this morning, President Obama is expected to meet with Vladimir Putin for the first time since the return to presidency. Brianna Keilar will bring us a live report from Mexico in about 30 minutes from now.
New details in the death of Rodney King. "The L.A. Times" reporting his fiance was speaking to him through an open window at 5:30 in the morning when she suddenly heard a splash. Not a good swimmer, she called police. Police say there are no signs of foul play and an autopsy is expected. King became a symbol of racial tensions after riots erupted in 1992 when police officers were found not guilty in his infamous videotaped beating. King was 47-years-old.
In a dramatic run at the U.S. open, Web Simpson wins his first major championship. He won the tournament at one over par after leader Tiger Woods had a meltdown yesterday, finishing tied for 21st. It's the ninth consecutive golf major where the winner was a first timer. It was a bizarre scene when a fan interrupted Simpson's interview with Bob Costas.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I knew that --
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROMANS: As the guy was taken away, Simpson said, "Enjoy the jail cell, pal."
O'BRIEN: What was his point with the clucking?
ROMANS: It's so civilized golf and when it isn't, it's news.
O'BRIEN: He sat up and acted like a bird. That would make news anywhere.
Let's get back to the top story which is Greece where the new democracy party is expected to form a coalition government with the Pasok party and stay in the European Union. Analysts are warning the group has to make swift moves to keep Greece and the global economy from tanking. Ken Rogoff is the former chief economist for the IMF and professor of economics and public policy at Harvard. Nice to see you, sir. Thank you very much, appreciate your time. KEN ROGOFF, ECONOMIST: Pleasure.
O'BRIEN: What do you think this means for markets today, we've seen a little up and down?
ROGOFF: It probably means a little up and down. I mean, it's good news but not fantastic news. The euro didn't end today, but the new government is very weak and shaky, Europe as a whole is weak and shaky, they are in recession and they need to do something. This buys time but if they don't do anything, it's not going to help.
O'BRIEN: They need to do actually some very specific things, right. By the end of the month, they have a deadline, I guess that's sort of technically like ten business days, more austerity and cuts, they don't default on the bailout. How likely is that to happen? What specifically do they have to do?
ROGOFF: Well, they are way behind on meeting their deficit targets already. During the interim, this election campaign, they really weren't keeping up. I doubt they'll catch up. They have to renegotiate.
But the problem is deeper than that. Greece has been in huge recession, all of the young people who voted for the opposition are angry. There's 50 percent unemployment among young people in Greece today. This is a program that's not working. It's got to change. And then often to Spain they have 50 percent unemployment among young people there. This is a continent, this is a system that is really on the brink. It didn't explode today but they really haven't solved the problems. It's not just degrees. It's all of Europe.
O'BRIEN: Greece's stability is affecting the stability of Spain and affecting the stability of Italy, and that in turn will bring big problems for the United States and big banks, right?
ROGOFF: Absolutely, if Europe were to fall apart, and we mean the euro were to fall apart, it would hit us very hard, the way our problems in 2008 hit them. But for now, they have a chance still to do something.
But, you know, they've been working on Greece for two years. They haven't put together a viable program for Greece and they haven't really figured out how to solve the deeper problems in the euro where they share a checking account but they are not married, and they just haven't figured out how to allocate the losses from the problems they have across the banking sector in Europe.
O'BRIEN: How do you fix that? Isn't the challenge how do you make a single currency work when you don't have a single government? You're dealing with all of these different governments. How do you solve the problems without disbanding the euro all together?
ROGOFF: Obviously nobody knows, this has never been done before on this scale. I think they have to look a lot more like a country in the Eurozone. They have to have a common fiscal policy, like a treasury, like we have in the United States. It has to have taxing power. The European central bank has to have its equivalent of their federal reserve and they have to be able to more clearly buy government debt and represent Europe. They need to have a common banking regulator because that's been a part of the problem. There's just a myriad of changes.
And there's a lot of resistance. The voters in France kicked out Sarkozy and elected Hollande, who wants to step back from these measures. Europe needs to move forward if it's not to -- we need to stay tuned to what happens. I don't think we're going to see anything quick.
O'BRIEN: I would agree with you, even with those looming deadlines. You brought coins in, Christine.
ROMANS: Ken, I have drachmas in my hand. I really do, a whole baggie full.
ROGOFF: They are not going to be worth much, Christine.
ROMANS: We've avoided it for now but it goes to the point when people put them in the piggy banks or grandma put them under the pillow. They never planned for a moment like this. They thought the crises would bring fiscal union and monetary union together but that's not really what's happening.
ROGOFF: They never planned for a rainy day. It worked well for a while. You know, they always thought that they would have political union, that they would be part of a broader vision of Europe, a single country in a sense, parallel to the United States. But they said our grandchildren will do that. That's not something we need to do yet. And the currency will make us stronger and make us move towards that.
But I think that we've learned and what many of us thought before is you can't put the cart before the horse here. Going and having the checking account before you got married, the common checking account, doesn't work. And they are in this problem where they blow up -- and that's really horrible for the global economy, horrible for everyone, or they really have to make compromises.
Here's a region that fought two world wars in the last century. I mean, they have cultural differences and they need to put them aside. There's a new generation in Europe. Will they do that? We need to see. They so far have taken only tentative steps. They are talking about doing more in the next couple of weeks. There's a ministers meeting at the end of the month. They say they have big plans. I hope so because we really need to see a quantum leap for its political union in the next few months if this holds together, otherwise Italy will look like what we have seen in Greece and problems in Spain, and so forth.
O'BRIEN: It could lead to major problems. Ken Rogoff, nice to see you. We appreciate your time.
ROGOFF: Thank you so much.
O'BRIEN: You bet. Still ahead this morning on STARTING POINT, behind the scenes of President Obama's immigration order. We're talking to one of the Christian evangelical leaders that the president met with before last week's executive order was released.
Plus, a teacher accused of telling her students to go ahead and pummel the class bully. You're watching STARTING POINT. We're back in a moment.
O'BRIEN: You know that song, "God Bless the USA." You can see our entire playlist at CNN.com/starting point. You can also follow me on Twitter at @Soledad_Obrien.
So before President Obama announced his new immigration policy, the White House met with evangelical Christian leaders across the country last Tuesday. That new policy would allow some young illegal immigrants to stay and work in this country without the threat of deportation. The directive applies to certain immigrants under the age of 30 who came to the United States before they turned 16.
During last week's meeting, Christian leaders discussed the evangelical statement of principles for immigration reform. It looks at immigration as a moral issue and calls for path to citizenship for undocumented workers.
Dr. Richard Land was one of the leaders in that meeting. He is the president of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention. The SBC is an influential evangelical Christian organization, the largest protestant group in the United States. Thanks for being with us. We certainly appreciate it.
So that meeting took place several days before the president made his announcement. Can you tell me a little bit about the conversation that took place in that meeting? Was he trying to get you on board? Was it a discussion of sort of the evangelical values around immigration?
DR. RICHARD LAND, PRESIDENT, ETHICS AND RELIGIOUS LIBERTY COMMISSION, SOUTHERN BAPTIST CONVENTION: Well, now, we didn't meet with the president. We met with his advisers. And we talked with them about the immigration -- evangelical immigration roundtable that states certain principles immigration should be around respecting the god given dignity of every person and unity of the family and respecting the rule of law, calling for security national borders and then calling for a pathway to either citizenship or full legal status for those who are here to earn a pathway to full legal status for those who are here in an undocumented form.
We did talk about what's been called the DREAM act and Senator Rubio's alternative Achieve act. You know, these people that were covered by this executive order, this is the low hanging fruit of immigration reform. These young people, 99.9 percent of them have done nothing wrong. They didn't bring themselves here. They were brought here as young children by their parents. Many of them have no memory of their country of origin. They are -- they've been raised in the United States and gone to high school in the United States. They want to go to college and want to serve in our military.
O'BRIEN: It's interesting you call --
LAND: They want to be fully participating parts of our country.
O'BRIEN: It's interesting you call that low hanging fruit because there were some who say that not only was it executive order done sort of around congress, obviously but done for political reasons. Let me play you a little chunk of what Mitt Romney said on the weekend talk shows.
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MITT ROMNEY, (R) PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If he felt seriously about this, he should have taken action when he had a Democrat House and Senate but he didn't. He saves these sorts of things until four and a half months before the general election.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why do you think he did that?
ROMNEY: Well, I think the timing is pretty clear. If he really wanted to make a solution that dealt with these kids or illegal immigration in America, then this is something he would have taken up in the first three and a half years, not in his last few months.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So he did it for politics?
ROMNEY: That's certainly a big part of the equation.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
O'BRIEN: Do you think that's true, sir? That it was done politically, for political reasons?
LAND: I have no way of knowing, I'm not running for president like Mitt Romney and not running for reelection like President Obama. I can't know the motives of their hearts. Look, if an election year, everything is going to be perceived as being political. But the president has been waiting for Congress to do something. Congress hasn't done it.
Congress I think was actually in the process of seeking to do something. Marco Rubio was making real headway with a big that is remarkably analogous to what the president did. But for whatever reason the president did it, although I would rather have Congress do it because that way it's long -- it's a long-term solution, not a short-term solution. But as Marco Rubio said, the president's action complicates the politics but reduces the urgency, because it does keep these young people from the fear of being deported.
These are young people that are a natural resource. There are between 800,000 and a million of these young people. They see themselves as Americans and want to be Americans and want to prepare themselves to be productive members of our society. I'm trying to figure out what the problem is.
O'BRIEN: When you say complicates the politics, of course, politicians on the conservative right who you usually see eye to eye with, disagree with you and there's a long list now. What would you say to them about that?
LAND: I would say they need to listen to their colleague, Senator Rubio, by why this is something that's good to do and ought to be done. This is the right thing to do. These young people didn't do anything except follow their parents to this country. You know, we hear people say, well, this is amnesty. Amnesty means you've done something to be forgiven for. These young people have done nothing wrong. They are innocent and want to be part of the country. We ought to be doing everything we can to give them the legal status and could confirm the legal status the president has temporarily given them with this executive order.
O'BRIEN: Richard Land, always nice to have you, we appreciate it.
Still ahead this morning on STARTING POINT, today's get real is a story of a Texas kindergartener whose classmates lined up to take a shot because they say he was a bully. They say it was their teacher's idea. Let's bring in our STARTING POINT team to talk about that and much more. Margaret Hoover is here. Margaret, my son has a giant crush on you. She's Also the author --
MARGARET HOOVER, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: I have a crush on him too.
O'BRIEN: Will Cain, a contributor for TheBlaze.com. Nice to have you. Back in a moment.
ROMANS: Checking in on today's other top stories, thousands protesting the NYPD's stop and frisk tactics. Some 300 civil rights groups were represented in yesterday's march. Critics say the practice of stopping, questioning, and searching people who police consider suspicious is illegal and humiliating to hundreds of law abiding minorities.
Members of the band Radiohead say they are shattered by the loss of a crew member killed in a stage collapse in Toronto Saturday. Scott Johnson, the band's drum technician, got pinned underneath the rubble after the entire stage and scaffolding came tumbling down. Three other people were injured. The cause of that accident is under investigation.
Jack Osbourne announcing he has multiple sclerosis. The 26-year- old told "People" magazine says he was diagnosed from test taken after he lost 60 percent vision in one eye. He received the news two weeks after the birth of his daughter who is now two-months-old. Soledad?
O'BRIEN: Oh, my goodness, sad news.
ROMANS: Wish him the best. O'BRIEN: Christine, thank you very much. Our team joining me this morning, Margaret Hoover, author of "American Individualism," and focus of a big crush by my son, who is seven, so your husband can breathe a sigh of relief. Celeste Headley is with us as well, the host of "The Takeaway." Will Cain is with us, CNN contributor and columnist for TheBlaze.com. Nice to have you all.
Wow, did you hear the story? It's so sad. Our "Get Real" this morning takes place in San Antonio, Texas. A teacher is going to lose her job after she did something incredibly stupid, which is this. There was a 6-year-old boy who seemed like she was -- sounds like by some descriptions he may have been a bully or tough in the class. So the teacher basically decided that what they would do is line up the classmates and have them hit the boy who was perceived to be the bully.
Apparently according to this police report, the teacher said in order to show why bullying is bad, instructing the peers to hit him and hit him harder. There was a second teacher involved who intervened after one of the boys hit hard on the back. And 24 kids hit the kid once, some at least twice. Some kids said they did not want to hit the boy but they did because they were afraid not to with the two teachers.
WILL CAIN, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: We try to figure out how to handle bullying, one thing we can safely say, this is not how you handle bullying.
O'BRIEN: By a teacher. It's breathtakingly --
CAIN: Bullying of the kid they perceive to be the bully.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If it's true, the parents say nobody ever contacted them to let them know there was a problem with her son.
O'BRIEN: Yes, Aiden's mother.
HOOVER: Yes, she says he's not a bully, no one ever said there was a problem and it's not clear if he received any injuries. One teacher has been ousted all together, crazy.
O'BRIEN: Unbelievable. Will Cain, what are you wearing around your neck?
CAIN: This is an example of a little more productive --
O'BRIEN: I don't think the TV can see it like we can.
CAIN: This is my father's day present from Charlie I was instructed clearly you must wear at work, at work meant in front of the camera. They made this happen.
O'BRIEN: That's good teaching.
O'BRIEN: Tell Charlie, good work.
Still ahead on STARTING POINT, brand-new biography on president Obama is out. Some pretty startling revelations that the president's own story in his own auto biography doesn't match up. We'll talk about that as well.
And, I'm sorry, who won the game? It was the Heat. Yes, yes, yes. Miami Heat led by LeBron James. Who was that? LeBron James.
HOOVER: You have to give her one. Come on.
O'BRIEN: Thank you.
CAIN: I hear good music in the background. That must be me.
HOOVER: It's the sound of Miami heat winning.
O'BRIEN: That is. That's correct. You're watching STARTING POINT.
O'BRIEN: Welcome back to STARTING POINT, everybody. President Obama is in Mexico for the meeting of the world's 20 most powerful economies today.
The developments in Greece are obviously being closely watched by the president and the other leaders at the G-20 Summit. Let's get right to CNN's Brianna Keilar. She is live for us in Los Cabos, in Mexico. Good morning.
BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Soleadad. The eurozone crisis front and center especially as the election is just months out and this is really the issue that is the biggest threat to the U.S. economy.
President Obama looking for signals from European leaders here at the G-20 summit, only a handful of them are here, but they are power houses like Germany and France.
He wants them to signal that they are moving towards a solution and that they are going to get something done to try to contain the issues that Europe is facing economically.
The other big thing we're watching today, Soledad, is this meeting between President Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin. The first meeting since Putin was elected as president a short time ago.
And this is expected certainly to be take bit of a tense meeting as relations between the U.S. and Russia are quite strained right now. The big topic there is going to be Syria.
The U.S. wants to see Bashar Al-Assad out of Syria. Russia has been blocking some U.N. efforts to take action. And actually have not only financial interests in Syria, but a naval base there and is moving as we speak two warships to its naval base there on the Mediterranean -- Soledad.
O'BRIEN: Brianna Keilar for us this morning. Brianna, thank you for that update. Let's get to Christine Romans. She's got an update on the headlines this morning. Hi, Christine.
ROMANS: Good morning again, Soledad. Supreme decisions coming, Supreme Court justices have to decide 14 cases before the end of the month, among them, the president's health care reforms and Arizona's controversial crackdown on illegal immigrants. Opinion days this week are scheduled for today and Thursday. So decisions could be handed down as early as 10:00 this morning.
One side ends and the other begins. Prosecutors are expected to rest their case today in the Jerry Sandusky child rape trial as the defense starts the major question, will the former Penn State football coach take the stand. Sandusky is charged with sexually abusing 10 boys over a 15-year period.
High winds and extreme heat remained a volatile mix for fire crews in Colorado. The high park fire burning near Fort Collins has now destroyed at least 181 homes. That's the most in the state's history. The fire has scorched 86 some square miles and officials say it's 45 percent contained now.
The Miami Heat taking a 2-1 lead in the NBA finals. The Heat pulled out a 95-81 win over the Thunder last night. Oklahoma City blew a 10-point lead in the second half and Kevin Durant scored just four points in the fourth quarter.
Greek voters picked the pro-bailout party in elections there and that pushed markets up in Europe and Asia overnight. The euphoria is quickly fading this morning. Dow and S&P 500 futures are down.
Nasdaq futures are up a little bit because there's still a lot of uncertainty in Europe. This election in Greece just a small step towards fixing Greece's sovereign debt problems.
Let's check today's travel forecast. Meteorologist Rob Marciano joins for us that. Hi, Rob.
ROB MARCIANO, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Hi, Christine. After a gorgeous weekend on the east coast, things are starting to move. If you're travelling to D.C., some showers and thunderstorms are heading that way. The stuff to the north in eastern pa will probably fall apart as it heads towards New York.
This stuff was rough and tumbling across Minneapolis last night heading through Green Bay. I think it will stay north of Chicago, but the heat is going to be building, not only Chicago, but back towards the west as well.
The heat pump from the Gulf of Mexico and fire threat is going to be high again with windy conditions out west. We'll have winds 50 to 60 miles per hour. Might touch 100 today in Denver, places to the east as Chicago will get well into the 90s, maybe setting some records there, try to stay cool. Christine, back to you.
ROMANS: All right, thanks, Rob. I have a feeling that Soledad, the only heat she's thinking about is the sports story about the Heat.
O'BRIEN: What did you say, the Heat won last night? Have I won my money yet, Will?
CAIN: No. You are score boarding a game three of a seven-game series. I'm just warning you.
O'BRIEN: I can't hear you. I can't hear you. Thank you.
All right, let's talk about this new biography, it's about President Obama and has some pretty startling revelations. The book is David Maraniss' "Barack Obama, The Story," and it questions the president's version of his own history, including his memoir, "Dreams For My Father," which was written back in 1995.
The new book details discrepancy between what we've been told about President Obama's life than what Maraniss' says really happened. It comes out tomorrow.
Ben Smith is the editor in chief of "Buzzfeed" and has read and analyzed the book, joins us this morning. It's nice to have you with us. Thanks very much.
So let me read a little chunk of Maraniss says in his new book. He says, "It's important to say it falls into the realm of literature and memoir, not history and autobiography and should not be read as a rigorously factual account.
The character creations and rearrangements of the book are not merely a matter of style, devices of compression, but are also substantive.
What exactly are the discrepancies between what everybody has read in President Obama's book back in 1995, "Dreams of my Father" and this new book?
BEN SMITH, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, "BUZZFEED": Well, eventually two different sets of fact checks and Maraniss', you know, great book, which is not just a fact checking document for sure.
The stories of Obama were told by his family, but turned out not to be true. Some of them kind of legends and things of his grandparents had done, which didn't turn out to have happened, from meeting Herbert Hoover to fighting colonial struggles, which are apparently typical.
Things his mother told him about his father to protect him. Again, then there's a set of things where Obama had retold his own story. "Dreams For My Father" is very much about race, the subtitle is a story of race.
And he had rearranged things in his life and turned white characters black and emphasized race and created new characters. There's one woman who, a college acquaintance of his who kind of was very central to his politics who was Swedish and made her black to kind of tell a very specific story.
And I think it's a narrative device, but it's really unusual situation, which a politician has completely controlled with his own memoir so the revision is interesting.
HOOVER: You talk about this conspiracy between the president and his highest critics because he's ended up inadvertently fueling the things that conservatives fear most about him.
SMITH: Right, what's so interesting is that, I think in a lot of cases, somebody's political enemies, their instinct would be to debunk thinks, but he makes himself look like a wilder kid than he was.
Like he did more drugs and suggesting, if he says he used cocaine and nobody has proved that and that may actually be made up. The people who would go after him or are trying to kind of prove that he was even crazier than in his memoir and he thinks his life was tamer.
O'BRIEN: To what end? Why would you do that? I mean, why would you say -- especially this book was written when he was on the cusp of a political career and sort of thinking -- the conversations about race, even just the overall conversations about him.
I sort of get why you start framing, who I am, where do I come from, why would you make up how much pot you smoked and if you did drugs?
SMITH: He's trying to create this kind of narrative tension between his misspent youth and successful adulthood and that transition. If he was, you know, basically a good student and a great --
O'BRIEN: Nobody wants to buy that book.
SMITH: Who also smoked some weed, that's a much less compelling story than this kid who sees there's this moment in the book where he sort of seems like he's considering shooting heroin.
It's a great tension. You see -- he's also somebody who thought about being a writer and you see what he's trying to do, but it is not just to faithfully portray --
CELESTE HEADLEE, HOST, "THE TAKEAWAY": The storyline that Mariniss touches on that would be a great book and is a great book. His search for his own identity, the fact that he feels because of his extremely diverse background he doesn't fit in anywhere --
CAIN: Not the American world, internationalist world, always seeking to find himself.
SMITH: That's the core of Maraniss' story is the sense of his outsiderness and how he's shaped by that. Mariniss, I guess, wants to think it's not primarily about race in America and that is sort of in a way simplified version of it. This is psych co-biography, inside the president's head and that's dangerous terrain.
O'BRIEN: It is actually fascinating. Ben Smith is the editor- in-chief of "Buzzfeed." It's nice to have you with us. We appreciate it.
We're going to be talking to David Maraniss, the author of the book, on Wednesday morning right here on STARTING POINT.
Still ahead this morning, paying big bucks to settle a lawsuit after users spot themselves in ads. That's never good. Our lawyer friend, Will Cain will explain why that's a bad thing.
How Mitt Romney's bus tour is turning in some ways into a try out maybe for the spot on the ticket --
CAIN: "American Idol" for the vice president --
O'BRIEN: I like it. You have to sing? You're watching STARTING POINT. We're back in a moment.
O'BRIEN: "Naked Eyes," I remember that. I had this album. Lord, that took me back for a moment.
Anyway, moving on, Mitt Romney's bus tour of six key swing states continues today. Some possible vice presidential picks have been going along for the ride.
Today, it will be Congressman Paul Ryan on board the bus because it's his home state of Wisconsin. Saturday, it was the former Minnesota Governor. He met up with the bus in Pennsylvania and Rob Portman was on board at one point as well.
So as you point out, it's sort of the "American Idol" for VP candidates.
CAIN: Look at this list, it's interesting. We got like six guys, all of which have been mentioned for vice presidential possibilities, Senator Rob Portman from Ohio as you said, Governor Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota, now we've got Paul Ryan, Bobby Jindal, and Marco Rubio.
HOOVER: Do you think -- I mean, these are states they need to win and get back as President Obama won them in 2008.
HEADLEE: Interestingly enough, you have to assume that Mitt Romney learned something from the Sarah Palin choice because what are the two things he said.
His VP needs to be ready to take over the presidential office now and the other thing was their number one ambition needs to be to get me elected. There's a lesson.
O'BRIEN: I wonder what the conversation -- we'll know because we're going to have a conversation this morning with Tim Pawlenty and ask him, what are you talking about on the bus? Is it 20 questions? Is it word association?
CAIN: I'm sure he'll tell us all about --
O'BRIEN: I'm sure he will. I find him very open and forthright with me all the time.
HOOVER: Will, where do you text your answer to?
CAIN: Text A to --
O'BRIEN: I thought Pawlenty was great. I'm going to vote for him.
Still ahead this morning on STARTING POINT, the "Beatles" and the "Rolling Stones" and The "Who," to be a fly on the wall backstage at their shows. Our next guest was. He is sharing his story and took pictures to prove it.
Then later, a bizarre incident, the U.S. Open, the fan --
HEADLEE: The bird calling.
O'BRIEN: What was that about? He interrupted the trophy presentation. We're watching STARTING POINT. We'll have that story and much more straight ahead.
ROMANS: Other stories we're following this morning, talks on Iran's nuclear program resuming this morning in Moscow. Tough oil sanctions are looming despite the latest round of talks.
The sanctions from the United States and the European Union would apply to any country that buys Iranian oil and could cut off nearly half of Iran's exports removing a million barrels a day from global oil market.
Facebook agreeing to pay $10 million to charity and a lawsuit -- settling a lawsuit over ads the social networks calls sponsored stories. A group of Facebook users sued when they liked a product and saw their picture being used to endorse the product in sponsored story on their friends' pages. The settlement still needs to be approved by a judge.
The family dollars still rules the Box Office. "Madagascar 3, Europe's Most Wanted," the number one movie in America for the second weekend in a row grossing $35 million. Followed by "Promethius" with $20 million and the heavily promoted "Rock of Ages," Soledad, it only pulled in a disappointing $15 million.
O'BRIEN: I support that because my kids love that movie. "Madagascar 3" what's not to love? And they're 7 years old. They love everything. It could be the worst movie ever.
HEADLEE: That's true.
O'BRIEN: And some of them --
HEADLEE: No taste in movies.
O'BRIEN: Some have been the worst. It's animated and they get to eat candy in the middle of the theatre. Ding, ding, ding.
I want to introduce you to Ethan Russell. When he was 21 years old, Ethan Russell began photographing some of the biggest legends of rock 'n' roll. He shot album covers for the "Beatles, Rolling Stones, The Who."
He's the only photographer to do all three. Russell witnessed history unfold behind the scenes with these icons and now that history is documented in his new e-book. It's called "An American Story, It's Your History, Help Write It."
It's interactive, contains 250 photographs, most -- many of the most famous groups of the musicians of the '60s and '70s, many never seen before. It's nice to have you with us.
The way you got this gig, because you weren't a professional photographer when you started taking professionally -- professional pictures, how did that happen?
ETHAN RUSSELL, PHOTOGRAPHER: Well, it was completely by accident. John Lennon has a great quote, which is life is what happens while you're making other plans.
0And I've gone to England because I gone to my father to borrow money to buy a movie camera. He said, do you think you are using your time as well as you might? I said short of going around the world. He said, why don't you do that?
I went to England from San Francisco in '67, it was love and music and all those guys, you know. And I went there fully expecting it to be bigger even. They weren't there. You didn't hear them on the radio at all. You didn't see them on television.
O'BRIEN: So you had access?
RUSSELL: I had access because somebody showed up in my apartment, a friend of a friend. I was working in a hospital with autistic children. I wasn't really even a photographer.
And he wanted to be a writer and he saw some pictures that I had of children, and one picture of a group my brother managed and asked me if I wanted to photograph Mick Jagger.
O'BRIEN: And the rest, as they say, was history. Let's walk through some of the pictures are amazing. So there's a picture, January 1969, "The Beatles," performing their last concert. They were recording "Let It Be." Tell me a little bit about this.
RUSSELL: I'm just going to give you another story not unlike the first, when I went down to -- I met all the people that did that movie working for "The Stones," they were filming. Neil Astronol, who is the head of Apple told me he didn't need me to be down there.
He said we decided to let you come, but you can shoot for one day. I said I wouldn't shoot for one day. I would shoot for three. I went into Apple and I was planning to show them to the press officer.
And one at a time McCartney, Lennon, Harrison and Ringo Star all walked in by the time they had flipped through the pictures somebody said, let's do a book. I worked with them for a month. It was a 140-page book that came out with the record everywhere in the world except America.
O'BRIEN: My goodness, eight months later the last photo session. You could feel how much things had changed. Tell me about that.
RUSSELL: And that picture was never published before this book. It's in the book. And I didn't -- I was 22. I didn't tell people what to do. I didn't have this I have to make a big image.
I just sort took the picture that was in front of the camera and at that point that photograph of that session, of which I have several in the book, I call weep. It's never been seen and partly because it is next to the last photograph of "The Beatles."
O'BRIEN: You could feel the tension and the unhappiness?
RUSSELL: You could feel it.
CAIN: "The Rolling Stones, The Beatles," Janis Joplin, "The Doors, The Who," the list is amazing of people you photographed. On a personal level, who is your favorite to be around?
RUSSELL: Well, the first book -- favorites are hard but if I had to choose -- I mean, I think arguably who I haven't is Dylan. Of the people I photographed, Lennon, I think, because after you sort of get out of that massive bubble how great everything is all the time, things get tough which they did for him.
He owned it. He said I screwed up, but it's just me doing it and that quality of being the person that says it's all of us living our lives and we're going to share that as opposed to package it and dress it up, I admire that tremendously.
O'BRINE: Let's talk about that. First of all, you couldn't stumble into the photo session with someone who is a rock icon certainly now.
But also it just feels like everybody's image is so closely managed that you wouldn't necessarily get authentic pictures of what it was really like, do you think that's true?
RUSSELL: Two really important points behind that. One is that you don't get the history because it's not shot. No one is there to shoot it.
My work, my early work, I did the whole 1969 tour with the stones and I was just there. And you can be there if you look at all these pictures, all I do is stand on the edge and take the pictures.
So you lose that. That's one. The other thing is, it's product photography in my opinion. It's with that kind of imaging --
O'BRIEN: Marketing, marketing, marketing.
RUSSELL: It's the same for Toyota.
CAIN: Your whole experience reminds me of that movie "Almost Famous."
HOOVER: I was thinking the same thing.
CAIN: All of a sudden you seemed to be part of the band. For a year with "The Stones" you said, what did you say, eight months with "The Beatles?"
RUSSELL: About two months with "The Beatles" and about two years with "The Stones," a little more.
CAIN: Do you feel that way? Do you feel that during that time period you were part of the band?
O'BRIEN: Go see the movie. Let us know what you think because we think it's very similar. Ethan Russell, it's so nice to have you with us. The photographs are beautiful. We appreciate it. It's an e-book that people can actually get 250 images.
RUSSELL: And 400 links.
O'BRIEN: Right because the story, are of course, to follow the story online.
Still ahead this morning on STARTING POINT, we spoke about the bus tour. Mitt Romney's bus tour looking for votes and looking for the next VP. We're going to talk to someone who was on that bus, the former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty will be our guest coming up next.
Plus, what police are saying about the mysterious death of Rodney King that happened over the weekend. You're watching STARTING POINT. We're back in just a moment.