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New Details on Petraeus' Affair; Time Running Out to Avert Fiscal Cliff; Too Early for 2016?

Aired November 11, 2012 - 08:00   ET



RANDI KAYE, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): From CNN world headquarters in Atlanta, this is CNN SUNDAY MORNING.

GENERAL MICHAEL HAYDEN, FORMER CIA DIRECTOR: It's a tragedy. It's a tragedy for the nation. It's a tragedy for the agency.

KAYE: Harassing emails. A second woman involved. A scandal unfolding on Election Day. We'll bring you details on the affair that brought down the most powerful spy chief in America.

Seven trillion in tax increases and spending cuts, and the threat of another recession. That's the fiscal cliff that looms ahead, 51 days away.

They're our fathers, other mothers, our sons and daughters. This Veterans Day, we honor the heroes that fight for America's freedom.



KAYE: Good morning, everyone and happy Veterans Day. I'm Randi Kaye. Thanks for starting your morning with us.

We start with new details on the scandal that led to the resignation of CIA director, General David Petraeus.

That information includes the justification for the FBI investigation and a timeline for when the White House was informed.

Here's CNN's intelligence correspondent, Suzanne Kelly.


SUZANNE KELLY, CNN INTELLIGENCE CORRESPONDENT: We now know from a U.S. official that it was a complaint that Paula Broadwell, the woman who wrote the biography of General Petraeus, was sending harassing e-mails to another woman close to the CIA director that prompted the FBI to investigate. Also, we know from that source that the investigation led to the discovery of e-mails between Broadwell and Petraeus that indicated the affair. That second woman hasn't been identified and the official we spoke with didn't know the nature of that woman's relationship with the former director.

But more details are coming out about the timeline of events and when U.S. officials were notified of the circumstances of this investigation.

A senior U.S. intelligence official tells CNN that the FBI informed the director of national intelligence, James Clapper, about the investigation on Tuesday night, election night, just as some polls were beginning to close, and that Director Clapper as a friend, colleague, fellow officer and admirer, urged Petraeus to step down from his position.

We know as well from that intelligence source that Director Clapper informed the White House about the investigation on Wednesday, and then, of course, on Thursday, the president and Director Petraeus met and that's when his letter of resignation was offered to the president.

The questions now, of course, will focus on this second woman. Who was she? What was the nature of her relationship with Petraeus? And what more do officials know about the nature of those e-mails between Broadwell and this other woman?

Maybe some of the questions will be answered as the oversight committees begin to pose questions of their own over this investigation and why they weren't informed of it until just hours before Director Petraeus sent notice of his resignation and the reason behind it to the men and women who worked for him at the CIA.

Suzanne Kelly, CNN, Washington.


KAYE: General Petraeus was originally scheduled to testify this week to Congress in a hearing on the attack in Benghazi, Libya. He won't now. Though, some are saying that's a mistake. Instead, Acting Director Michael Morell will take over.

Bush administration CIA Chief Michael Hayden explains why.


HAYDEN: I know there are some people are saying that they were hopeful that General Petraeus personally would testify. But, frankly, you want the agency to testify. You want someone who is knowledgeable about the event, what the agency knew, what the agency did. And Mike Morell is fully qualified to do that.

Now, at some later date, they may want General Petraeus to come back in and give his personal impressions. I understand that.

But the hearings go on and the CIA will be there telling what it knew about that event. (END VIDEO CLIP)

KAYE: Michael Morell is filling in as CIA director until President Obama chooses a permanent replacement.

Let's turn now to politics and the end of the 2012 presidential election. We can finally call Florida for President Obama. You can see that he won by just a hair, over 70,000 votes.

Here's a look at the nationwide vote total. President Obama got 51 percent or 61.8 million voters. That's around 3 million more votes than Mitt Romney.

And there's the map. President Obama ended with 332 electoral votes. Mitt Romney got 206. But the bigger machine really here was eight. That is the number of toss-up states captured by the president. That is a clean sweep.

And while the presidential race is officially over in Florida, one of the state's congressional races is still undecided. The latest totals show a close race between first term Republican Congressman Allen West and his Democratic challenger Patrick Murphy. With Murphy edging west by a mere 2,400 votes. Results will officially be certified next Tuesday and while Murphy has claimed victory, West has yet to concede.

The West-Murphy race is one of the most expensive for a House seat. The federal election commission and the center for responsive politics are reporting West raised $17 million through mid-October, while Murphy raised $3.7 million.

And after scenes like this one where voters waited in long lines, often for hours, to make their voices heard, Florida Governor Rick Scott is ordering a review of what happened at the polls. In a statement, Scott says, in part, "We need to make improvements for Florida voters, and it is important to look at processes on the state and the county level. We will carefully review suggestions for bettering the voting process in our state."

The election is over, but Mitt Romney is finishing up some business as candidate Romney, writing his supporters a note of thanks. The message sent out this weekend read, in part, "This was more than just a campaign. This was a national movement. From the bottom of our hearts, Ann and I thank you for your support, prayers, efforts, and vote. We are forever grateful to each and every one of you. Today is a new day. Keep believing in America."

Now to a developing story this morning. Israeli soldiers have fired warning shots towards Syria. Israeli officials say it was retaliation for a mortar shell that hit near a military post in Golan Heights. The Israeli-Syrian border isn't too far from Damascus.

Israeli's military says they've issued a complaint through the United Nations.

Today, we stop and take time to honor our veterans. (VIDEO CLIP PLAYS)

KAYE: Parades and services are being held across the country to remember all the men and women who have served in our armed forces.

President Obama will pay tribute to veterans this morning here at Arlington Cemetery. You're looking at pictures -- live pictures from Arlington National Cemetery. He will lay a wreath at the too many Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and the president will also make a statement that happens at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time.

Fifty-one days and counting. The deadline to make a deal and avert the so-called fiscal cliff less than two months away now. We'll tell you what's at stake.

You're watching CNN SUNDAY MORNING.



BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I'm not wedded to every detail of my plan. I'm open to compromise. I'm open to new ideas.


KAYE: President Obama says he is willing to negotiate when it comes to the so-called fiscal cliff, and this week he will get his chance as he sits down with congressional leaders once again in a bid to cut the national deficit. The meeting could have implications for talks going forward.

Athena Jones has more now from Washington.


OBAMA: It's time to get back to work.

ATHENA JONES, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): With the election in the rear view mirror, the focus in Washington is back on efforts to avoid the economically devastating fiscal cliff.

JEANNE SAHADI, CNN MONEY CORRESPONDENT: If we just go over the cliff and let the policies stay in effect, we're basically going to undo the recovery. Neither party really wants to be blamed for that.

JONES: The cliff amounts to $7 trillion in spending cuts and tax increases over the next decade. The threat of these painful cuts set to begin on January 1st is part of a deal Congress and the president made last year to force them to agree on a long-term deficit reduction plan.

DANIEL NEWHAUSER, ROLL CALL: This is unprecedented scenario that Congress has basically put a gun to its own head and said, "If we don't act, we're going to shoot ourselves." JONES: So far, that long-term plan hasn't materialized. The biggest chunk of the cliff, the Bush tax cuts. They're also a big sticking point. Democrats insist cuts for families making $250,000 or more must end.

OBAMA: We're serious about reducing the deficit. We have to combine spending cuts with revenue. And that means asking the wealthiest Americans to pay a little more in taxes.

JONES: Republicans say that will hurt the economy.

REP. JOHN BOEHNER (R-OH), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: Feeding the growth of government through higher tax rates won't help us solve the problem.

JONES: But the speaker also signaled what could be an opening, saying raising more revenue is now on the table as long as it comes from tax reform and not higher rates. One thing that's clear, lawmakers want the president to be involved in any deal making.

BOEHNER: I think it's important for us to come to an agreement with the president, but this is his opportunity to lead.

JONES: And taxes aren't the only hang up. Congress also has to figure out how to reduce spending on entitlements like Social Security and Medicare, the Democrats' sacred cows.

With the balance of power unchanged on Capitol Hill, finding that elusive common ground on these issues could be tough, both in the lame duck session and beyond. A short-term deal that postpones the cliff appears most likely.

NEWHAUSER: Just give everybody a little bit of time, breathing room to get back next year. In the meantime think about what and exactly how you want to do this, and give everyone time to negotiate, quite frankly.

JONES: It's sure to be a long and rocky road ahead.

(on camera): Friday, the president hosts a meeting with congressional both from both parties at the White House -- Randi.


KAYE: Athena Jones, thank you very much.

And Congress isn't the only group concerned with balancing the budget. We'll introduce you to a group that's trying to teach fiscal responsibility to underserved communities.


KAYE: For some families, Veterans Day is intensely personal. Parades and flag-waving have their place.

But Nicki Bunting sees Veterans Day through the eyes of her two small children who will never again see their father. Her tribute? Keeping his memory alive. This is her story.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Scoop it up. Scoop it up!

NICKI BUNTING, WIDOW AND MOTHER: Lacrosse is something that Bubba and I both dreamed of watching our kids play. He really analyzes the game, and he plays it well, which is just like his dad.

Bubba always dreamed of being a dad. That's kind of all he ever wanted to be. He was gone for about 10 months and was training the Afghani national police.

He came home for about two and a half weeks. That was his R & R period. It was awesome.

Connor had changed so much, so it was really cool to see Bubba's reaction to all the new things that Connor could do.

He really, really, really loved his friends and family. He would do anything for them, even if that meant, you know, paying the ultimate sacrifice.

Once he was back, he was there for about four days. That's when he was killed by an IED.

Hey, Cooper.


N. BUNTING: Oh, yes. Kitty cat doesn't want to come inside.

Cooper, my little one, he is just my little miracle baby. We wanted so badly to have another baby.

Are you going to wear daddy's hat? Yes?

Four days after I found out he was killed is when I found out I was pregnant.

Let's see. Does it fit?


N. BUNTING: A little big.

I try to keep his memory alive with everything I do really.

Look how big you guys are smiling.

I talk about him all the time.

This is his belt, you know.

We have a room that's kind of dedicated to him.

You see that thing hanging up on the wall? That's his saber.

He told me before he deployed if anything ever happened to him that he'd be OK because he had everything that he ever wanted in life because he had Connor.

BUBBA BUNTING, U.S. ARMY: My daddy shows me how to make a line.

N. BUNTING: I'm going to raise his kids the way I promised him I would.



KAYE: Welcome back. Twenty minutes now past the hour.

There are just 51 days left until we would go over the so-called fiscal cliff. That is the $7 trillion in automatic spending cuts and tax increases that could go into effect in January.

So as Washington contemplates its own fiscal responsibility, one group is hoping to make it work on a more personal level right at home.

Operation Hope says its mission is to promote financial dignity in underserved communities.

And joining me now is John Hope Bryant, the group's founder and serves on the President's Advisory Council on Financial Capability. And former U.N. Ambassador Andrew Young, a global spokesperson for Operation Hope.

So you are -- welcome to both of you.

You are having a summit here in Atlanta this week. Tell me, first, John, about the group's mission and about the summit a little bit.

JOHN HOPE BRYANT, FOUNDER AND CEO, OPERATION HOPE: Well, our mission is very humbly trying to continue some work that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was doing when he unfortunately passed on to a better place. In '68, he was focused on the poor people's campaign. And his last book was "Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community?"

And I think these are the same questions we're trying to answer right now. Our mission is silver rights, not civil rights, but silver rights -- to make free enterprise and capitalism finally relevant to poor, and to finally work for the poor.

And I would argue they even view middle class today, you feel poor. If you are living in a major city, making less than $40,000, $50,000, $70,000 a year, you're struggling to make ends meet, living in a small town, making $25,000, $30,000 a year, struggling to make ends meet -- so folks living from paycheck to paycheck before the economic crisis. And whether you are white, black, red, brown, or yellow, you want to see some more green. So we think that financial dignity and financial literacy is a new civil rights issue. You don't understand the language of money, and you don't have a bank account, you're an economic slave.

KAYE: Absolutely.

Ambassador, what made you get involved in the project?

ANDREW YOUNG, GLOBAL SPOKESPERSON, OPERATION HOPE: Well, Dr. King's mission was to redeem the soul of America from the triple evils of racism, war, and poverty.

Well, we got to poverty, that's more than a government proposition, and we found that -- what I found as mayor, that we had to involve everybody in the free enterprises, and that was more money available in the free enterprise system. If we learn the language of money, as John says, and how the system works.

KAYE: And so, how exactly what do you offer in terms of what I read from your website, there's literacy programs, there's help with credit, there's all kinds of things, right, for both the younger generations and adults.

BRYANT: Yes. But let's make this real people. I mean, Atlanta is the only international city in the South arguably because this man brought $70 billion worth of investments from the world here. We have moved credit scores 120, 140 points for individuals, like the guy who made the suit that I'm wearing.

We literally took his dream of being a clothier and made a reality of having a closing business with a $35,000 loan, yes, but mostly capital in his head and in his heart by giving him financial literacy, by raising his credit scores and moving it from 550 credit score to 670. You do that, and change somebody's life.

Five fifty credit score is a check-cashing customer. It's a predator lending customer. It's a title lending customer.

Those predator lenders are not racist. They're target marketing. But they move somebody to the 700 credit score, that's mainstream banking.

KAYE: Right. So, I mean, obviously, you have seen the need. The need is great.

Why has it taken so long? Why has it taken a group like this?

YOUNG: Well, it's taken a long time because for a long time we thought the government was doing it all. When I became mayor in 1980, though, I realize that I couldn't go to Washington for money. I had to go to the private markets.

But nobody taught me that in school, and nobody is teaching most of the mayors. They sit around figuring not knowing how to access capital. There's an excess of capital in today's world, and we're running deficits with a budget, and there's $21 trillion in tax havens.

When I became mayor there was about half a trillion dollars that I knew about in oil money, and I went to those capitals and invited them to come to Atlanta and invest and made it easy for them to invest. We made it efficient. We made it honest. And we made it virtually tax-free to get started.

KAYE: On your Web site, you say that you helped so many families help so many people that you're actually putting yourself out of business.

BRYANT: That's our goal.

KAYE: That's the goal, right?



BRYANT: I sometimes feel, though, that we're failing because as we help more people. More people fall into a trap of needing help. I mean, we talk about this fiscal cliff. Most of my clients are -- I mean, I'm confident President Obama and Congress will resolve this before the deadline, but most of my families are on the fiscal cliff every month. I mean, they've got too much month at the end of their money, and that's most American families.

KAYE: Right.

BRYANT: What we have got to do is to not cut, cut, cut, but grow, grow, grow. There is too much opportunity sitting on the sidelines in America. These are from poor neighborhoods we see. They're emerging markets.

And if we can move them from where they are increasing their credit score, increase financial literacy, make them know economic interest and job creators because most jobs come from start-ups, you grow GDP, you grow tax bases. The mayors have more money in their coffers to then spend, hopefully responsibly.

We've got to look at growing economy, figure out what we're for, versus cutting an economy, because we don't -- because we've lost our storyline.

KAYE: It's true.


KAYE: We talk so much about the fiscal cliff and focusing on Washington, but it's very true. So many families have their own.

John Bryant --


YOUNG: We ought to fight (ph) this crisis. KAYE: Yes, yes.

YOUNG: I mean, we are going through so much technological change, more technological in the last 10 years than the world went through in the last century.

KAYE: It's very true.

YOUNG: So, it's going to take us a while to adjust.

KAYE: We'll get there we'll get there one way or the other.

BRYANT: And Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is coming with us this week in our global summit to amplify the importance of financial dignity and Ambassador Young is co-chairing that summit.

KAYE: Thank you, both, John Bryant and Ambassador Young. Appreciate it. Very important discussion.

As we mentioned, Operation Hope is hosting this summit, and the chairman, Ben Bernanke, will be the keynote speaker there. For more on Operation Hope, can you check out their Web site

Well, believe it or not 2016 is just around the corner. All right. Pretty big corner. We admit that. It's never too early to start looking at the next presidential campaign, dare I say that? We've got your first look.


KAYE: Good morning. Mortgage rates inching even closer to historic lows. Have a look here.


KAYE: Welcome back to CNN SUNDAY MORNING. I'm Randi Kaye. Bottom of the hour now and here are some of the stories that we're watching this hour.

We are tracking new details about the surprise resignation of CIA Director David Petraeus. A U.S. official says his extramarital affair came to light because of an e-mail investigation. It was sparked by a complaint of harassing e-mails allegedly sent by Paula Broadwell, Petraeus's biographer, to another woman close to Petraeus. The official didn't name the woman or know the nature of her relationship with Petraeus.

BBC's director General George Entwistle is out of a job today. Britain's leading news source in the midst of controversy after airing a report that included false claims of sex abuse against a former high ranking politician. Entwistle called his resignation quote, "The honorable thing to do". The BBC has since apologized to that politician.

Two dead and dozens of homes in danger after two houses in Indiana exploded. The exact cause hasn't yet been determined, but according to the local fire department it looks like a gas explosion; 200 residents in the neighborhood were evacuated. Rescue teams now looking for other victims.

Be sure to stay with us on this one.

To politics now and do you think it's too early to talk about 2016? We don't think so. Republicans have to regroup and refocus while Democrats have to decide who is next. Could it be Hillary Clinton? This comes from the "New York Times". "Every day people approach Hillary Clinton and tell her she has an obligation to run and give America its first woman president. Being asked to run for president is kind of a side career all by itself."

Then there's this from Politico. "A new survey from public policy polling shows that she's the frontrunner in Iowa already. Her biggest challenge in the poll comes from Vice President George Biden." That is just part of the 2016 story.

CNN political editor, Paul Steinhauser has the rest of the equation.


PAUL STEINHAUSER, CNN POLITICAL EDITOR: Call it the never ending campaign. When one ends, the next one begins.

MITT ROMNEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: I have just called President Obama to congratulate him.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I just spoke with Governor Romney and I congratulated him and Paul Ryan on a hard-fought campaign.

STEINHAUSER: With the 2012 election barely in the rearview mirror, we're already thinking about the next road to the White House. Marco Rubio heads to Iowa next weekend to headline a Republican event. Does the popular GOP Senator from Florida have designs on running for the next Republican nomination? A source close to Rubio says that kind of talk is way too premature, but adds about the state that kicks off the presidential caucus in primary calendar, it's always good to have friends in Iowa.

Rubio is just one name in a large list of Republicans who may consider runs for the White House. They include Governors Chris Christie of New Jersey, Bob McDonnell of Virginia, Bobby Jindal of Louisiana and Scott Walker of Wisconsin, Senators Rand Paul of Kentucky and John Thune of South Dakota, former Governor Jeb Bush of Florida, former Senator Rick Santorum who battled Mitt Romney deep into this year's primaries, former Governor Mike Huckabee who ran for president four years ago and the past two Republican running mates Congressman Paul Ryan and former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.

As for the Democrats, the Vice President keeps dropping hints of running again for president. Here is Joe Biden from Election Day.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Last time you're going to vote for yourself do you think?


STEINHAUSER: And even though she keeps saying no to running, there are tons of Democrats who hope Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will eventually say yes. As for the new names -- keep your eyes on Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Now I could keep going, but we don't have the time. If you think I'm jumping the gun, listen to this reputable guy.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOST, "THE SITUATION ROOM": For political news junkies like me, it's never too early to start thinking about Iowa, New Hampshire, and all of the rest.

STEINHAUSER: Call this the beginnings of the preseason when possible White House contenders write books, start out PACs, campaign for fellow party candidates and start building up friends in the early primary and caucus states -- Randi.


KAYE: Paul Steinhauser, another reputable guy thank you very much.

Well, in some places you can be locked up, executed, or attacked for your religion and our next guest wants to end that. Suzan Johnson Cook, we'll talk about her mission to spread religious freedom worldwide.


KAYE: Welcome back, everyone.

Our guest today for "Faces of Faith" has the daunting task of promoting religious freedom in 199 of the world's countries. Not an easy task when you think about places like Iran where a Christian pastor was imprisoned for three years.

Youcef Nadarkhani was sentenced to death just because of his religion. Back in September the Pastor was released from prison, in part, with help from the U.S. State Department and this woman you may not have heard of. Suzan Johnson Cook is the Ambassador for International Religious Freedom, and she joins me now from Washington.

Ambassador, good morning.


KAYE: Tell me, first, about your role in helping free the Pastor that we just mentioned.

JOHNSON-COOK: Well, thank you very much for having me today. You know, our office was on it early in the -- in his jailing. Not only did I and the International Religious Freedom write letters but also the Secretary of State on his thousandth day in prison also wrote a letter. We worked multi-laterally with other countries so that the attention could be brought to his case and certainly that he could be freed. And he has now been freed since the Congress is also very much an integral part of it.

My office was mandated by Congress. I'm the ambassador-at-large for International Religious Freedom. So it's very important for us to be on these issues. You know he's been released, but unfortunately there are many names that we don't know that are still persecuted and imprisoned daily --


KAYE: Right.

COOK: -- because of their beliefs.

KAYE: As -- as we look at what your focus is, you have a great task ahead of you. Will we ever see governments, do you think fully protect religious liberty in the worst offending countries such as Iran or North Korea or Saudi Arabia, China? What do you think?

COOK: Well, unfortunately, my job will never be obsolete. You know we serve all 199 countries of the globe. Our 2011 International Religious Freedom report just was released and you know unfortunately, there are many places where religious freedom is actually sliding backwards, but we continue to advocate for all the countries in the world.

In 1948 there was a universal human rights declaration that was signed by the globe and so that is the standard to which we hold all countries. We continue to press some certainly violate more than others, but we continue to press governments with civil society, including religious leaders and we will continue to press for the freedom of religion for all people.

We have it in America as part of our, you know, Constitution, and so many times we take it for granted, but there are many parts of the world even as we're speaking this morning where that is not happening.

KAYE: Right.

This year as you well know, we saw a lot of international hatred against the U.S. some of it because of that anti-Muslim film, but how does all of that affect your mission if other countries see -- see us here in the U.S. as intolerant?

COOK: Well, you know, we have freedom of speech and freedom of expression and certainly sometimes our freedom of speech is not always good speech, but what we believe is to counter that is with other speech, which will actually ostracize and counter what people are doing. Violence is never an option for us. We also have here in America the office of White House faith-based initiatives. We have a Department of Justice and so we certainly on these shores have mechanisms to deal with the hatred and things that are happening here.

But unfortunately you know internationally we often use all the diplomatic tools that are available to us. Diplomatic engagement, we have public diplomacy. We issue the 2011 report -- report annually now that 2011 was just released, and we continued also to make grants so that people can promote and advocate for religious freedom.

So we're on the frontlines, we're doing the work that can be done. I visit many of the countries that sit with many of the governments and the leaders that are there. And we also said here, we work with our embassies, we work with civil societies, those on the ground, those on the frontlines, and I -- you know I was on the frontlines of 9/11, which was really where my first interest in Religious Freedom really came to a forefront because there we -- here in America we have to learn how to deal with religions that were different than ours.


KAYE: Right, right.

COOK: Deal with extremism and so it's an ongoing problem that cannot easily be solved.

KAYE: And when you look at the -- what's happened around the world, we had the whole Arab spring movement. Have you seen any improvement?

COOK: Well you know what that does is it provides pro-democratic societies and they go into the transitions such Egypt and other countries what it does provide is an opportunity for engagement and for a reform. And so as the countries are doing their new constitutions and appointing their new leadership as in Egypt and other places it allows for us to place you know people who have been oppressed to have an opportunity to be in government.

The Egyptian government has said they're going to have women involved, they're going to have Coptic Christians involved who've been oppressed and so it provides an opportunity for us to see improvement. And so we're hoping -- and we're hoping to hold them to those standards that they have expressed for themselves.

KAYE: Ambassador Suzan Johnson Cook, a pleasure to chat with you this morning. Thank you so much.

COOK: Thank you for having me.

KAYE: An extramarital affair brings a decorated military career to a sudden end. Still ahead: the impact of David Petraeus's resignation on Washington.

But first, a question for all the political junkies watching this morning. Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson got more than a million votes on Election Day on Tuesday. Before him who was the last third party candidate to top the million vote mark? If you know the answer, tweet me @randikayeCNN. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

KAYE: Before the break I asked you if you knew the answer to this question. Who was the last third party candidate before this year to get a million or more votes in the presidential election? The answer? Green Party candidate Ralph Nader. He got 2.8 million votes in the 2000 election. Ross Perot holds the record for most third party votes all-time, though.

Thanks for all those tweets. Been checking that Twitter feed -- you guys were busy.

Well, his resignation from the CIA and the reason he gave for it have rocked Washington -- many calling the departure of General David Petraeus a blow to the intelligence and military communities. What does it mean for national security?

Let's bring in CNN's "STATE OF THE UNION" host, Candy Crowley. Candy, good morning to you. Senator Dianne Feinstein even wished President Obama hadn't accepted the resignation. Was there any other option do you think for the President?

CANDY CROWLEY, CNN HOST: I think had there been another option, had they seen that he could stay as head of the CIA, they would have taken it. This was a very popular man both with Republicans and Democrats. He got into the limelight recently because of Benghazi and the CIA's role and what it did and didn't do. But nonetheless, we are talking about a man, General Petraeus, who has been very popular on both sides of the aisle.

It made a lot of things a lot easier when you have that kind of support. So I think the President who had, by all accounts, grown easy working with him, I think if he had a choice or felt he had a choice he would have taken it.

KAYE: One of your guests today, New York Congressman Peter King, told CNN that Petraeus is a quote, "necessary witness" for those hearings on Benghazi -- supposed to happen this week. His deputy director, though, we know, will now step in. What are the chances that Petraeus will still be called, do you think, to testify?

CROWLEY: Well, there are some congressmen that I have heard and I actually talked to one who said "No, we still want General Petraeus to come." And there's certainly nothing that I know of that would keep him from coming and testifying as a private citizen, which he is now.

I don't know, you know, legally what he might do or what they might do, but, I mean there's nothing that prevents that per se. So if they really felt that the General's testimony was needed in this look in the Benghazi, certainly they could call him to testify. And obviously, they have subpoena power in some of these investigations.

I mean we'll see. I mean the institution one has to assume has the same knowledge, certainly. The deputy director one would think would have the same knowledge about this particular tragedy in Benghazi, but we'll see as we move forward.

As you know, there's lots of hearings starting this coming week, so we'll see if they feel a hole there that only General Petraeus can fill in terms of information.

KAYE: All right. Candy Crowley for us this morning. Candy, thank you, nice to see you.

And, of course, keep it here for "STATE OF THE UNION". It starts in about nine minutes at 9:00 a.m. Eastern time. Be sure to tune in right here on CNN.

The presidential campaign has come and gone, but not without leaving us some pretty hilarious and unforgettable moments. Comedian Dean Obeidallah, he is ready to share his favorite moments of 2012 right after this.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I still love you, America. I do, but you've hurt my feelings very, very much.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Father. Hello, Father.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm so very angry, father. I wish I could punch America in the face. I do, I tell you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Now, now. This is not a time for anger, Tag.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So what's next for you, father?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Oh, I don't know. There's so much I want to see and do. I would like to learn how mayonnaise is made, as I like mayonnaise very, very much.


KAYE: Finally the 2012 presidential campaign is over and in the history books, but not without giving us some moments that we will remember, for sure, for years to come. Candidates from Rick Perry to the President himself all made their share of goofs, bloopers, and blunders. And our friend comedian Dean Obeidallah has made a whole list of his favorites.

Dean, I want to get to your list --


KAYE: -- but I want our viewers, first, to take a listen to a moment at the top of your list -- Herman Cain talking foreign policy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) HERMAN CAIN (R), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: And when they asked me who is the president of Ubekibeki-bekibeki-stanstan, I'm going to say, "You know I don't know, do you know?"


KAYE: Bekibeki-stanstan? Do you know?


KAYE: What do you think.

OBEIDALLAH: I think when he said that, comedians around the country said "That's our guy". That's the one we want to have the nomination, and he sang the song "Imagine there's no pizza". I mean, sometimes they do things intentionally funny and unintentionally funny. As comedians we appreciate both. And in that one I think Herman Cain had a lot of potential to be a great candidate for us comedically.

KAYE: Former Republican candidate Rick Perry, we can't forget his big oops.


KAYE: That moment also made your list. A painful time trying to remember the third of three federal agencies that he said he was going to cut as president --


KAYE: Let's watch this.


GOV. RICK PERRY (R-TX), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: It's three agencies of government when I get there that are gone. Commerce, education, and the -- what's the third one there? Let's see.


PERRY: Oh, five. Ok. Commerce, education, and the, um, um --


PERRY: EPA. There you go. No, again.


KAYE: I think that was Mitt Romney, Ron Paul trying to help the guy out, right?

OBEIDALLAH: They were trying to help him out. You know what, it's funny. Rick Perry has a sense of humor about the thing. At the time I'm sure he wasn't laughing. I think Perry now the elections over, he can do commercials for like gingko biloba or memory loss -- remember that. Now I take this medication and I remember all the agencies I want to cut. So he might as well have fun (inaudible) and profit off it when he leaves the governorship in Texas.

KAYE: What about the President. You actually say he made your list because you think he sent a body double to that first debate with Romney?

OBEIDALLAH: I think that or a zombie. I'm not sure what happened. Maybe it wasn't on his schedule. He just showed up, and like what are these people doing here. I can assure you it was not funny to President Obama or his supporters at the time the debate was going on. In retrospect, now I think you can look at some of that and go, "What were you thinking? What were you thinking? Drink some coffee. Have some Red Bull. Wake up. Get in the game here."

KAYE: Yes.

OBEIDALLAH: So I think now people can laugh and have a good time, but it was very -- maybe it was Jay Ferrell (inaudible) from "Saturday Night Live". I'm not sure.

KAYE: That's good.

Well, Romney, of course, you say had his share of moments too. Your favorite, though, were his comments about the binders full of women at the second presidential debate. This comment right here --


ROMNEY: I said, well, gosh can't we find some women that are also qualified. And so we took a concerted effort to go out and find women who had backgrounds that could be qualified to become members of our cabinet. I went to a number of women's groups and said can you help us find folks, and they brought us whole binders full of women.


KAYE: Yes. Big oops, huh?

OBEIDALLAH: Well, I had binders full of women when I was a teenager. I hid them under my bed so my mom wouldn't see them. I could have told him a lot of amazing women he could have picked for that cabinet at the time. I think --


KAYE: I think it was a different kind of binder he was talking about.

OBEIDALLAH: Really? I wasn't sure about that, but that was definitely a funny moment. That and Big Bird -- I think they were very even. I wasn't sure which one to go with there, but binders full of women made me laugh more. KAYE: What about Clint Eastwood? Was his empty chair stunt at the Republican National Convention, is that a big oops for you?

OBEIDALLAH: Well, it was -- I think it was, and I think Rick Perry and Clint Eastwood together, 2016, the ticket space political cowboys touring the country, talking to empty chairs and talking to appliances, forgetting things. It can be really funny for us. But at that moment I think that we were laughing Clint Eastwood was laughing, Mitt Romney probably not laughing at that moment, but it was a funny moment, and it made Clint Eastwood very endearing on some level to me frankly.

KAYE: And just very quickly, one of my favorite moments of the campaign. This one right here -- the big bear hug. There you go -- the President's big bear hug. That was a good one.

OBEIDALLAH: That was a great moment of being embraced by this guy who clearly was very strong and liked President Obama a great deal. You know, optics are everything. That sent a great message that a blue collar tough guy was embracing president Obama literally embracing.

KAYE: I can't believe security didn't take him down, but it was a good moment.

Dean nice to see you. Thanks for the laughs this Sunday morning.

OBEIDALLAH: Nice to be here.

KAYE: Appreciate it.

OBEIDALLAH: Thanks Randi.

KAYE: And thank you everyone for watching today. You can always continue the conversation with me on Twitter @randikayeCNN.

"STATE OF THE UNION" with Candy Crowley starts right now. Enjoy your Sunday.