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Assange Facing Arrest In U.K.; Stopping Europe's Ripple Effects; Sandusky Prepared To Testify; Mubarak In "Critical Condition"; Miami Heat On The Verge Of NBA Title; Going To Be A Scorcher; Report: Mubarak On Life Support; White House Targets Rove Organization; Waiting on the Fed; Sandusky Prepared to Testify; Assange Facing Arrest In U.K.; Going For The 2012 Gold

Aired June 20, 2012 - 06:00   ET


ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: -- a very risky move by him and his lawyers.

ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN, CNN ANCHOR: Lebron James and the Miami Heat can taste it now. Just one win away from the NBA Championship. Good morning to you. Welcome to EARLY START. Thanks for being with us. I'm Zoraida Sambolin.

BANFIELD: Hi, everybody. It's nice to have you with us. We're bringing you the news from A to Z. It is exactly 6:00 a.m. in the east. Let's get started here.

We start with this breaking news. The founder of Wikileaks, Julian Assange, police in London are saying he could be arrested for breaking the terms of his bail all because he tried to claim asylum at the embassy of Ecuador in the U.K.

That to avoid being sent to Sweden and then possibly to the United States. Our Nima Elbagir is live in London with this story. So what is the deal here? The last we heard, Nima, he was about to be extradited and all of a sudden he shows up at the embassy.

NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, the U.K. Supreme Court has finally ruled that he would not be able to appeal the appeal on his extradition request to Sweden.

There was potentially some hope that he could take that all the way to the highest European court, the European Court for Human Rights, but it seems that Assange wasn't fancying his chances there in Strasberg and claimed asylum.

Now part of his bail conditions are that he is at the registered residence for him between 10:00 local time in the evening until 8:00 a.m. local time in the morning. This is the condition he has now of course breached.

But you have to expect, Ashleigh, that if he's gone as far as to seek asylum in the hope he'll be sent to Ecuador, which does not have a European arrest law and extradition treaty. That he probably thinks that his chances are pretty much limited -- Ashleigh. BANFIELD: So, Nima, what are the bigger concerns for Mr. Assange, the sex crimes charges in Sweden or the potential charges in the United States over leaking sensitive documents and whole wikileaks scandal?

ELBAGIR: Well, both the U.S. and Sweden have maintained consistently throughout this saga that there is no U.S. extradition request to Sweden on espionage, that the only chance that Assange has to go and answer for is those rape and sexual molestation charges in Sweden.

What's important to note is that by the U.K. Supreme Court, denying him the opportunity to reopen his appeal, they are not in any way judging on his guilt or innocence. What they are saying is that there's no basis for him to not be extradited.

His lawyers had been saying that the prosecutor in Sweden was not a judicial authority and could not request a Europe wide arrest warrant. The U.K. Supreme Court has now found that is not the case.

It is an incredibly torturous legal saga playing out here, Ashleigh. We understand that the Ecuadorian ambassador is heading to the British foreign office later today to formally inform them of everything has happened and to try as they say to find a way through this.

BANFIELD: Diplomatic solution, diplomacy versus the law. All right, thanks very much. Nima Elbagir live for us in London this morning.

SAMBOLIN: It is 3 minutes past the hour, President Obama back in Washington this morning. He is back from the G-20 Summit that was held in Mexico.

World leaders met to discuss Europe's financial problems. The president saying he is confident Europe can get back on track with the U.S. economy and his election hopes in mind.

Foreign affairs correspondent Jill Dougherty has been all over the summit and she is live in Washington for us this morning. Jill, did the president and other leaders actually figure out a plan? I know there were a lot of meetings, but a plan to get the global economy back on track?

JILL DOUGHERTY, CNN FOREIGN AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: I don't think that you can say that they did really at all. Some generalities, maybe a direction, but you know the word stove piping, Zoraida, that's what's the problem is in Europe.

Different countries in their own little own stove pipes doing their own thing. So what they are talking about is some type of integration and it would include kind of a banking union, a coordinated banking union.

And also something like we have here in the United States, which is the FDIC that guarantees the money that you have in the bank to a certain extent. So here's how President Obama explained all of this.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: What I've encouraged them to do is to lay out a framework for where they want to go in increasing European integration and resolving the financial pressures that are on sovereign countries.

Even if they can't achieve all of it in one fell swoop, I think if people have a sense of where they are going, that can provide confidence and break the fever.


DOUGHERTY: And that was really one of the things, Zoraida, that they were trying to do, which is at least give the impression to the world that they know what they are doing or at least they know the direction in which they are going.

SAMBOLIN: Interesting to say break the fever. You know, here we're always talking about the debt crisis in Europe and how it actually affects us here in the United States. The president also tied together the relationship between Europe and jobs here in the U.S. What did he say?

DOUGHERTY: Well, you could almost say the relationship between Europe and jobs and his re-election, but here's how the president explained it.


PRESIDENT OBAMA: Slower growth in Europe means slower growth in American jobs. If we take the right policy steps, if we're doing the right thing, then the politics will follow and my mind hasn't changed on that.


DOUGHERTY: And so bottom line, you got the same debate in Europe that you have here. Do you spend your way out? Do you use stimulus to solve problems or do you use austerity? And that's one of the debates here and there.

SAMBOLIN: That continues, Jill Dougherty, live in Washington for us. Thank you.

BANFIELD: It's 5 minutes now past 6:00 on the east coast. Jerry Sandusky may end up testifying today in his own trial. CNN has learned that he is prepped and ready to go, ready to take the stand in this case.

The defense is expected to rest its case this afternoon. Before that happens, his lawyers have got to decide, make that final decision whether or not to let him face questioning and it could be blistering. Closing arguments could take place tomorrow and that case could go to the jury as early as this week. SAMBOLIN: Attorney General Eric Holder could find himself on the business end of contempt of Congress citation today. A meeting between Holder and the House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa failed to resolve a dispute over the botched "Fast and Furious" sting operation.

Issa says he asked for more documents related to "Fast and Furious," which is linked to the death of a border patrol agent, but Holder did not deliver. So they are going forward with a planned contempt vote.

BANFIELD: Developing news this morning out of Egypt about the health of former President Hosni Mubarak. We are getting some conflicting reports unfortunately, hard to actually keep this down about his actual condition.

A state news agency is reporting the 84-year-old is clinically dead, but Mubarak's own lawyer says no, he's not. He's just in a coma. The military is saying his condition is critical, but that he is still alive.

A lot of confusion, all coming at a very critical time for Egypt because thousands are pouring into the streets overnight, this is Egypt's Cairo's Tahrir Square, which you've become quite familiar with on the news.

They've been protesting the military leaders that were supposed to oversee the transition to democracy, but instead grabbed more power before the leader could actually take office.

Coming up at 7:00 Eastern on "STARTING POINT," the former ambassador to Egypt, Daniel Kurtzer is going to weigh in on the death of a dictator.

Whether it actually matters in this whole story and whether democracy in that country is at risk. What could a failure there mean for the United States?

SAMBOLIN: The Miami Heat now just one win away from an NBA Championship. They beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 104-98 to take a demanding 3-1 series lead.

Lebron James led the way with 26 points, 12 assists and nine rebounds. The Heat can wrap it up in game five tomorrow night at home. History is on their side.

No team has ever come back from a 3-1 deficit in the NBA finals, but there is always a first time for everything, Oklahoma fans.

BANFIELD: Now we have that same philosophy playing out last week with the Stanley Cup, no team has ever come back with the three down or not since '52. It's exciting to see these two series play out.

It's 8 minutes now past 6:00. While the Thunder tries to beat the Heat, people in northeast and Great Lakes are really, really trying to beat the heat, the real thing. We're going to have more on the sweltering forecast right across the northeast and elsewhere in the country coming up.


SAMBOLIN: Welcome back. It is 12 minutes past the hour. Good morning to you, Washington, D.C. You are enjoying right now some really nice temperatures, 75 degrees, later get ready for 99.

A lot of northeast is feeling that record heat set to scorch the northeast on this first day of summer. Highs in the mid 90s yesterday in Cleveland, across the Midwest.

That dangerous blast of heat is heading for D.C., Philly and here in New York. Rob Marciano has all the details for us this morning. What a way to welcome the summer.

ROB MARCIANO, AMS METEOROLOGIST: That's right. First day, summer arrives later on this evening, but more importantly, Zoraida, this is really going to be the first big blast of heat and humidity that we're going to feel.

So that's a bit of a shock to the system. So not only we're going to be teasing records now. Some of the records are in the upper 90s and over 100 degrees. So may not break it some, but it's going to feel awful.

There are eight or nine states that in heat advisories or heat warnings right now for temperatures that will easily get into the 90s, maybe touching 100, with the humidity you're talking about heat what it feels more like 110.

These are the expected high temperatures for Boston, New York, Philly and D.C., all in the upper 90s today. Tomorrow, same deal, maybe cooling off a degree or two in some spots, but you're going to have two solid days of really some dangerous heat.

So take care of your elderly neighbors and your pets, of course, and take care of yourself and of course, drink a lot of water. We do have a little weak cool front, it's going to take time to get through over towards the northeast.

And until it does so, things are going to be a little bit on the toasty side as the heat pump actually, heating up the northeast and mid-Atlantic more than the southeast.\

We're kind of in a bit of a bubble and temperatures will remain seasonable here. If you want to cool off, head to Atlanta. It's going to be a chilly 89 degrees down here. You guys are welcome any time.

BANFIELD: I'll take it. Thank you, Rob. It's 14 minutes now past 6:00 in the morning on the east coast. Let's get you up to date with the top stories of the day. Christine Romans doing the job for us. Hello. CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, ladies. Let's start in Egypt this morning. Developing news there, Egyptians rallying for power as their former dictator lies in his death bed.

We're waiting to hear whether Hosni Mubarak is dead or alive this morning. A state news agency is reporting that the 84- year-old is on life support after having a stroke and being declared clinically dead. This comes as thousands gathered in Tahrir Square to tell the military to hand over power.

President Obama's legal team has filed a complaint with federal election regulators demanding to know the name of donors who are contributing millions to former Bush aide Karl Rove's "Cross Roads GPS" organization.

Right now, "Cross Roads GPS" is organized as a non-profit social welfare organization and not a traditional "Super PAC." It's allowed to keep the identities of its donors private.

In the 7:00 hour of "STARTING POINT", Soledad O'Brien will be joined by Pulitzer Prize-winning author David Maraniss. His new Barack Obama biography is getting an awful lot of buzz. She'll talk to him about that.

U.S. Coast Guards officials are investigating two recent hoax calls they say that received calls that led to costly searches on the taxpayer dime. One call came in last month, supposedly two miles off the Gulf of Mexico. The second one happened Monday, a call that a yacht exploded off the coast of New Jersey with fatalities and injured survivors. Investigators say they think someone on land made that call with their cell phone and they are investigating.

BANFIELD: And we hope they find that person because that the not only a nuisance, it's extraordinarily costly. Thank you, Christine.

ROMANS: You're welcome.

BANFIELD: Fifteen minutes now past 6:00 on the East Coast.

Wall Street listening up because Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke may have something to say today, may announce new steps to try to boost the economy. Christine does not get a moment off, she's coming back with a look ahead at what this means for you and your 401(k).

SAMBOLIN: And for an expanded look at all our top stories, head to our blog,


BANFIELD: Hello, everybody. We are minding your business at 19 minutes past 6:00 on the East Coast.

Waiting on Fed this morning. Federal Reserve Ben Bernanke is scheduled to hold a conference at 2:15 eastern time in D.C.

SAMBOLIN: Christine Romans is here to tell us what Wall Street is hoping he will say.

ROMANS: And markets closed higher because they are hoping that the Fed is going to do more stimulus in the economy. And that's what's really important here.

Let's talk about the Fed's stimulus tool box. Because the Fed is the only game in town. Congress doesn't do anything, the president is held back by Congress. Republicans would say rightfully so. And Europe is paralyzed with political process, too.

It could extend this thing called Operation Twist. That's where they, you know, they are buying some securities and then selling others to try to keep interest rates low. They do something -- it's likely, many people think they could extend this Operation Twist.

There's something called QE3. That would be another quantitative easing. Probably less likely, that is raw stimulus, pushing money into the system.

And it could change its interest rates forecast. We know that rates are going to stay low for a pretty long time so that's probably a pretty unlikely there. But the market -- people in the markets are saying they want to hear from Bernanke, the Fed is going to do everything humanly possible, Herculean, to keep the oxygen flowing in the U.S. economy because things have been slowing a little bit.

All about keeping interest rates low and they have been kept low for so long. But, as Zoraida and I were talking about, it doesn't mean it's easier for you to get a mortgage, it doesn't mean that your credit card interest rates are going down, it doesn't mean that it's creating a lot of jobs. So, what else can the Fed do?

It is all about growth. I want to talk quickly about the G-20 meeting in Los Cabos, Mexico. There they were in Baja, beautiful, all these craziness that's happening all around the world. I put the G-20 communicate, and there the G-20 leaders in their class pictures. I put the communique through something called a word cloud, I use the one called Wordle, to try to boil down all of that diplo speak into what is important for the world and the word is growth. You see it there on the left, G-20 and growth.

They want these economies to grow again and to create jobs. Some, a lot of critics, including my colleague Ali Velshi, say there's a lot of talk, a lot of words on that screen -- welcome, welcome, financial, global. But growth is the most important thing here. And they don't really have a concrete plan with all buy in from everybody about how to get growth again when the focus has been on austerity for so long.

BANFIELD: I hate to be Debbie Downer but all I hear is that the summits are useless.

ROMANS: You know what? There's so much talk, and behind the scenes, the people called Sherpas. Those are the people who do all of the economic work, the financial geeks and geniuses at this governments, they do an awful lot of work. It's three steps forward and two steps back on these things.

And you've got fires burning all around you too. And they have different goes. These different countries have different goals. They have to work towards more integration and a common purpose. But all of that is really being tested.

When you have prosperity, these summits tend to be much happier, right? People can give a little here, take a little there and move forward. But when you have prosperity that is strained like it is right now or struggling for growth, 12 European economies are in recession. That's where people try to -- it's every man for himself.

SAMBOLIN: Hard to reach a consensus.

ROMANS: It really is hard to reach a consensus. The one thing you need to know about your money today, there are 3.7 job seekers for each job opening -- 3.7 job seekers for each job opening, that's according to the Labor Department and that is a number to remind you why growth is so important.

If the U.S. economy is not growing more, you're going to have a long line of people you'll have to elbow aside to get jobs that are available in this country. Everybody wants more growth so we can get more people back to work.

BANFIELD: I'm not Debbie Downer, you are.

ROMANS: It's the facts, ma'am, if there's a storm in the Gulf of Mexico, I want to know about it. Maybe it's going to turn and somebody can protect me from it. I want to know what's happening.


BANFIELD: We adore you. Thank you, Christine.

SAMBOLIN: All right. First for the Southern Baptist Convention, an emotional moment for this man right here. We'll tell you about the trail he just blazed. That's coming up.

BANFIELD: If you happen to be heading out the door, not to worry, take us with you. You can watch us on your mobile as you're headed to where you're going. And then pop us up on your desk stop when you get there. Go to All you need to do is right there for you.


BANFIELD: Breaking news out of London: WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange facing arrest for breaking his bail.

SAMBOLIN: Ready to testify, Jerry Sandusky's lawyers could have him take the stand in his own defense today.

BANFIELD: She's co-captain of the world's top rank women soccer team heading into the London Olympics. Team USA's Abby Wambach is joining us live a little later on in this program.

Welcome back, everyone, to EARLY START. Nice to have you with us. I'm Ashleigh Banfield.

SAMBOLIN: And I'm Zoraida Sambolin.

Twenty-eight minutes past the hour here.

BANFIELD: Let's get you up to speed on breaking news, we've got this coming into CNN, WikiLeaks leader Julian Assange is facing possible arrest in the U.K. because police in London say that he has broken the terms of his bail by trying to seek asylum at the embassy, the Ecuadorian embassy in London. He's apparently doing this to avoid being sent to Sweden to face possible sex charges and possibly an extradition to the United States.

You might remember that Julian Assange lost an 18-month legal bid earlier this month to halt his extradition to Sweden where he's accused of sexually attacking two of his former volunteers.

In a matter of hours, we could see Jerry Sandusky take the stand in his own defense. CNN has learned the former Penn State assistant football coach is prepped and is ready to testify. Whether he actually does won't be decided until later today when the defense is expected to wrap up its case.

Yesterday, Sandusky's wife of 45 years, Dottie Sandusky faced 45 minutes of questioning. She told jurors a lot of boys had been to their home over the years and she never witnessed any inappropriate contact.

CNN national correspondent Susan Candiotti is live from Bellefonte, Pennsylvania. We'll get to Mrs. Sandusky in a minute. But I want to start with Jerry Sandusky because a lot of people think perhaps he'll take the stand today. It sounds risky.

SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it does sound risky, certainly. The question is will he do? Why would he want to do, Zoraida? One reason is it would give him a chance to look jurors in the eye and let them assess him, let him talk to them and tell what he thinks really might be at play here. Of course, he's not obligated to and things could go round.

We saw what happened when we did the interview with Bob Costas. So will his defense attorneys want to take that risk? We'll have to see what happens.

But, you know, the thing is defense spent the day yesterday trying as best they could to attack, for example, investigators who are on the case, accusing them of trying to coach the alleged victims in this case during questioning. And they put on more than a dozen character witnesses, all saying that Jerry Sandusky is a wonderful man.

Anderson Cooper spoke with one of those witnesses afterwards, who said she doesn't believe the testimony of any of the alleged victims. Here's what she said.


ANDERSON COOPER, A.C. 360: Do you believe that they are all lying?

JOYCE PORTER, FRIEND OF JERRY SANDUSKY: Well, I believe in Jerry and I believe in the thousands of lives he's already touched to have been bettered by his relationship with them. And when you count that plus knowing him for 40 years --

COOPER: So, why do you think these eight have testified?

PORTER: You know, you'd have to ask them.

COOPER: But I mean, you must think they are not telling the truth.

PORTER: Yes, I must think that.


CANDIOTTI: And when she got off the stand and she walked past Jerry Sandusky, she patted him on the shoulder, Zoraida.

SAMBOLIN: All right. So, let's get to Dottie Sandusky. I was reading a lot about what happened in court yesterday. You were there.

So, there was this critical moment where they asked her if there was any inappropriate contact between her husband and any of these kids. There was a moment of silence. Could you watch us through that?

CANDIOTTI: Sure, after they asked her that question, she paused and said, well, the only thing that I can think of is that one time when we were watching television, something happened on the television and the boy ran over and jumped into the lounge chair with my husband.

It was unclear what she meant by that and she gave one other example of being at the wrestling match and when she and her husband watched into the gym, she testified that one boy, the boy who was wrestling who knew Jerry, ran over and jumped into his arms. Again, unclear in her mind how that might be considered to be inappropriate, Zoraida.

SAMBOLIN: It almost seemed to me she was claiming that the child was being inappropriate, not her husband.

Anyway, we know you are following this for us and we really appreciate it. Susan Candiotti live for us. Thank you.

BANFIELD: In the meantime, Jerry Sandusky's attorney, Joe Amendola, is taking serious heat for a questionable comment he made to reporters outside of court yesterday. Here he is walking outside of the courthouse. Some people are saying he really crossed the line with a response to a question after he was asked whether he would allow his client to testify.

Listen for yourself.


JOE AMENDOLA, JERRY SANDUSKY'S DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Stay tuned. Come on, it's like a soap, you have to wait and see.

REPORTER: Thank you.

AMENDOLA: If you know the answers, it takes all the excitement out of it. Is it "Days of Our Lives"? I think it's "General Hospital". Actually, it could be "All my Children".


BANFIELD: You heard him say, when you asked what soap opera, all my children? It is not clear whether Amendola's remarks were inadvertent or made in extremely poor taste.

We have developing news out of Egypt to talk about this morning. Some conflicting reports about the ousted president, Hosni Mubarak who is given a life sentence. But now a state news agency is reporting that the 84-year-old former dictator shown here at his trial is on life support, having suffered a stroke and then being declared clinically dead, all of this coming as thousands of people gathered in Tahrir Square to tell the military to hand over power to the newly elected officials.

President Obama makes his case for stopping the ripple effects of Europe's debt crisis. At the G20 Summit last night, he encouraged E.U. leaders to focus on a long-term vision for the euro while making short-term economic fixes. President Obama also brought it back to the basics explaining why troubles in Europe mean trouble for the U.S.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Europe, as a whole, is our largest trading partner. If fewer folks are buying stuff in Paris or Berlin, that means that we're selling less stuff made in Pittsburgh or Cleveland. All of these issues, economic issues, will potentially have some impact on the election. But that's not my biggest concern right now.


SAMBOLIN: There will be more discussions about the global economy. E.U. leaders will have their own summit next week.

BANFIELD: New information this morning about a Russian ship allegedly carrying military helicopters to Syria. It appears to have turned back for home this morning. That's not the end of the story, though, because there is another ship and it's loaded with weapons and it may be on the way to the Mediterranean coast.

British officials are repotting that the original ship had changed course from the North Sea off the coast of Scotland after news of its controversial cargo made international headlines. Russian officials are not commenting on what the ships or what the ships are carrying, or where they are. Pentagon officials have told CNN that the Russians may be sending yet another ship carrying weapons, ammunitions, and small number of Russian troops as well to Syria. This to help fortify a small naval base situated there, and this as the situation spirals out of control in that country.

We're going to talk with Russia and all of the different issues relating to Syria and Russia at 8:00 Eastern when Soledad O'Brien is joined on "STARTING POINT" by Republican Congressman Peter King of New York because he is the chairman of the homeland security committee.

SAMBOLIN: The Southern Baptist Convention has elected its first African-American president. Reverend Fred Luter was elected with no opposition yesterday in the city he calls home. He was hailed for rebuilding his church, Franklin Avenue Baptist Church after Katrina.



REV. FRED LUTER: To God be the glory for the things that he has done. God bless you. I love you.


SAMBOLIN: Kind of short and sweet there. Before he takes over as president tonight, Reverend Luter will join us live. He will join Soledad O'Brien on "STARTING POINT." That is in the 8:00 hour.

BANFIELD: Something tells me he's not a man of few words, he was really choked up.

SAMBOLIN: Very emotional.

Great for him.

BANFIELD: Thirty-seven minutes past 6:00, summer officially arriving. That for you today, hot, hot, hot is the song and man, is it ever the story.

You live in the Northeast -- scorching. We're going to give you the lowdown and high, coming up.


BANFIELD: That's a good song, but the "Hot, hot, hot" is actually a better song for this next segment because it's 40 minutes past 6:00 on the East Coast.

Rob Marciano has been taking a lot of heat for the forecast he's giving out.

Oh, he's gone silent on me. Is that no response? Or is it just like, Ashleigh, it's my job?

ROB MARCIANO, AMS METEOROLOGIST: No, no, no, sorry. Somebody just got in my ear and spoke all sort of gibberish.


MARCIANO: Yes, exactly.

The summer has arrived. You've been waiting for this all spring, right? It's kind of a -- well, it was warm winter, right? It's going to get warmer now. Summer arrives tonight and temperatures are going to cooperate.

These are the record highs from yesterday, Detroit, 95 degrees with the temperature, and 109 in parts of Nebraska. These are expected high temperatures for today, 94 or better in Boston, 96 in New York, 94 in Atlantic City, maybe as close to 100 in D.C.

Tomorrow, we don't cool off very much. The cool down will come as we get towards the weekend. These numbers do not include humidity. With the humidity, it's going to feel like 100 to 110.

So, we've got a dozen states, from Maine to the mid-Atlantic under heat advisories and heat warnings. So, dangerous stuff is coming. This is the warmest air of the season, in some cases warmest since July of last year.

A bit of a shock to the system. Take care out there and try to stay cool.

BANFIELD: It's the official update, but it's a downer. Downer date. That was a really lame --

MARCIANO: Oh, come on now, embrace the heat.

SAMBOLIN: I shall. I don't about anybody else. But I'm loving it. Thank you, Rob.

MARCIANO: All right, guys.

SAMBOLIN: Soledad O'Brien joins us now with a look at what's ahead on "STARTING POINT".

SOLEDAD O''BRIEN, CNN ANCHOR: Oh my goodness! Lots, lots, lots of breaking news to tell you about.

Julian Assange, of course, you know, the founder of WikiLeaks, he is now facing arrest in London for violating the conditions of his bail. He is inside right now the Ecuadorian embassy in London.

CNN is there live. We're going to bring you a report.

Also this morning, the U.S. attorney general, Eric Holder, on the ropes as House Republicans get ready to vote him on contempt of Congress today. We're going to talk to Congressman Elijah Cummings about what could happen over the botched Fast and Furious program.

Jerry Sandusky's defense attorney was joking around with reporters and likened the trial to the soap opera, as he went back and forth and finally said, "All my children." Was that a verbal stumble or was it just was completely inappropriate comment? Or maybe both. You'll decide, and we'll tell you exactly what was said.

And Southern Baptists are experiencing a game changing moment today. They've elected a new president, Fred Luter, the first African-American president of the organization. We're going to talk to him live.

Don't forget. You can watch us starting right at the top of the hour, in roughly 17 minutes. You can follow us at work at

BANFIELD: Thank you, Soledad. Appreciate that.

O'BRIEN: You bet.

BANFIELD: America loves a good comeback story and we have one for you this morning. How about the U.S. Olympian trying to lead her team to a gold medal in London and come back from a broken leg. She's smiling, I think she's got good news for us. Abby Wambach coming up.


SAMBOLIN: It is 47 minutes past the hour. Let's get you up to date now. Christine Romans has all of your top stories. Good morning.

ROMANS: Good morning again. And some breaking news for you this morning.


ROMANS (voice-over): WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, facing arrest in Britain this morning. Police in London say Assange broke the terms of his bail by seeking asylum at Ecuador's embassy in London. He did it to avoid being send to Sweden and possibly the U.S.

Assange lost an 18-month legal bid earlier this month to halt his extradition to Sweden where he is accused of sexually attacking two of his former volunteers. We've also just learned that Assange is inside the embassy, and there's no possibility that he will be arrested while in the embassy.

A whole lot of groping going on at Southwest Florida International Airport. A former TSA worker is facing battery charges for allegedly groping a supervisor after she was subjected to a lengthy pat-down. It's all caught in tape. That's Carol Price (ph) being patted down for two minutes last April.

You can see the pat-down. She was so upset by the treatment from her former colleagues she went to a TSA supervisor to complain. And she appears to grope her to show her displeasure. Price is also facing charges for resisting an officer and is due in court on July 3rd.

It turns out people who go to McDonald's aren't loving it all that much. (INAUDIBLE) scored the lowest of any full service or fast- food chain in a just released consumer satisfaction index with a 73 percent satisfaction.

In fairness, McDonald's has historically scored poorly on the survey, but it's made pretty impressive gain since it earned a 61 percent satisfaction score in 2002. And Ashleigh, that still means 73 percent are satisfied with their Big Mac. Back to you.


BANFIELD: Thank you, Christine.

Americans Olympians just weeks away from their shot at gold in London this summer. That includes the women soccer team, but for one player, physical training is only half of the battle. Take this woman, Abby Wambach, she's fighting a mental battle after the break heard around the world, shall I call it? And, this was an on-field collision in the final warm-up match before the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.

She broke her leg in two places. I hate looking at that picture. It just looks awful, painful. It gives me the willies, broke her leg in two places. But you know what, that was then, this is now, 2012. Right now, her nemesis isn't the leg necessarily, it's Japan, because that might be the only thing between her and her team and their chance at the top of the podium.

Japan is the team that blocked the American girls from clinching the 2011 World Cup. And guess who's here with me right now? You look so healthy.


BANFIELD: You look, like, awesome. A far cry from that picture with the broken leg. And I cannot believe that was really what stymied you from competing in the Olympic last time around.

WAMBACH: Yes. It was five days before our team got on the flight to head to China. And, of course, it was devastating, but my team still went over and was able to secure gold for our country. And, for me, that was the most important thing. Obviously, it's devastating to break your leg, but more importantly, it's about the team.

BANFIELD: All right. Tell me about the team. How are you, guys, doing? I mean, we're just weeks away, and this is an exciting time.

WAMBACH: Gosh! I tell you what, it's really exciting. You know, the older I get, the more experience I have, the more I realize it is about the process. And, the weeks leading up to any kind of big tournament, it's so special, the players, the people and the hard work.

I mean, we've all put so much hard work into -- and invested into this Olympics. We're going to do everything we can to bring home gold. BANFIELD: You know, I remember the Mia Hamm, the Brandi Chastain story, the World Cup where, all of a sudden, women's soccer just got back on the map big time, and maybe not got back on, but "got on."

WAMBACH: Literally got on the map, yes.

BANFIELD: Literally got on the map, big time. And it doesn't seem like that's really gone away. What do you think it is about the game and the particular players on the American team who seem to keep that brand going?

WAMBACH: That was what was really special about the World Cup is we were able to create some household names for some of the players, you know, Hope Solo, Megan Rapinoe, and it's exciting. It's really exciting to be not only an icon but a role model in the craft that we all take part in.

BANFIELD: All right. So, I'm looking at your stats, and you are a head case, like literally.

WAMBACH: Literally. Yes, yes. I love that. I've never heard that before.

BANFIELD: Well, I just -- it came to me on a whim because, I think, what did I see here, of your 125 goals, 51 of them have been scored from your head.

WAMBACH: Yes. I've scored a lot with my head.


WAMBACH: You know, I actually -- it's all about the balls that get sent in from my teammates.

BANFIELD: Is that accidental or you just aim better with your head than your feet?

WAMBACH: Well, some might say that I'm actually better at hitting the ball with my head than I am with my feet. But, you know, it's what I do well, and whatever I can do to help my team win games.

BANFIELD: You do it really well. You're the second leading goal scorer next to Mia Hamm, and what, fourth in the world?

WAMBACH: Yes, something like that.

BANFIELD: Something like that, so shy.

WAMBACH: The older you get, the more -- it's not about the stats, it's about the championships. And, I think that any kind of legend status like Mia has with the goal scoring championship, that's for retirement. You know, that feels good when you're retired. Right now, I want to win as many championships as I can. And that's the most important thing.

BANFIELD: Do you think about retirement? WAMBACH: Well, yes. I mean, that's why --

BANFIELD: I mean, when you break your leg, do you think about retirement?

WAMBACH: Yes. Of course.


WAMBACH: You never know if you can come back healthy, but the really unique opportunity that all of us, especially female athletes have when competing in four Olympic games is that we're not just competing for on the field stuff. We're trying to get into the community.

You know, I work with a few Olympic partners. You know, Arnold and Oroweat Breads. I'm allowed to go out and inspire young kids to be active in nutrition and promote good health and good ways of being.

BANFIELD: All right. So, with London coming up, who do you fear more, Brazil or Japan?

WAMBACH: I don't fear anybody.

BANFIELD: That's my girl.

WAMBACH: I don't fear anybody. That's not who we are as a team. We've always done really well by --

BANFIELD: Let me put it this way, who are you focusing on more, Japan or Brazil?

WAMBACH: I think that probably Japan is going to have more difficult team because they play such a different style of soccer. Brazil, of course, is a team that always to be reckoned with. So -- and it's the Olympics. You never know what's going to happen. You know, everybody is excited.

BANFIELD: You better bring that medal back.

WAMBACH: Well, it's gold or bust for us. We really -- we'll do everything we can. We got so much attention from the World Cup, so it's exciting.

BANFIELD: U.S.A.! Go Abby. Abby Wambach, it's nice to see you. And she just flew in from Sweden, too. So, you're really terrific --

WAMBACH: Bright eyed and bushy tail this morning.


BANFIELD: That's awesome at this hour. Thanks so much and good luck to you.

WAMBACH: Thank you.

BANFIELD: Zoraida.

SAMBOLIN: All right. Thank you very much. We have some breaking news out of Toulouse, France. Some hostages were taken at the bank there. Al Qaeda has claimed responsibility. We're going to have a live report coming up. We're going to take a quick break. We'll be right back.


BANFIELD: "Starting Point" just about a minute away from now.

SAMBOLIN: And we're going to wrap it up as always with "Best Advice." Here's Christine.

ROMANS: And for that, we have "AC 360's" Anderson Cooper.


ANDERSON COOPER, HOST, ANDERSON COOPER 360: Best advice ever gotten is to follow your bliss. It's not very specific advice. It's hard to figure out what it is -- what your bliss is, but if you can figure out what it is, and somehow make it a career, then, I think that's where true success, however you define success really comes from.

It's not original advice. It comes from a professor from Sarah Lawrence named Joseph Campbell (ph).


ROMANS: I love how he credits it, but then figure out what it is in your life and follow it. There you go.

SAMBOLIN: It's wonderful. And he did that for career, but I think, for life in general. It's really great. So, thank you.

BANFIELD: Follow your bliss. I like M&Ms.


BANFIELD: They're pretty blissful.

SAMBOLIN: There you go.


BANFIELD: Skittles and M&M's. If I follow that, I am done for. Hey, thanks, everybody, for joining us. That's the news from "A" to "Z." I'm Ashleigh Banfield.

SAMBOLIN: I'm Zoraida Sambolin. "Starting Point" with Soledad O'Brien starts right now.