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ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT

Protests Erupt Near U.S. Embassy In Cairo; U.S. Raises Concern About Egypt; Are Republicans About To Cave?; Republicans Starting To Turn On Norquist; Black Friday Events Lure Shoppers

Aired November 23, 2012 - 19:00   ET

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


TOM FOREMAN, CNN ANCHOR: OUTFRONT next, protest erupts in Egypt, thousands demonstrating against a controversial grab for power by their new president, Mohamed Morsy. Many loudly saying he's acting like a modern day pharaoh.

A big Republican turns his back on the Grover Norquist tax pledge. Is this just smart politics or is the GOP preparing to give in to the president?

And thousands of people packing into stores across the country today, there was a ton of hype going into Black Friday, but watch your wallet. We'll tell you how the shopping season is really adding up. Let's go OUTFRONT.

Good evening. I'm Tom Foreman in for Erin Burnett. OUTFRONT tonight, Egypt erupts. Thousands of angry Egyptians have been protesting near the U.S. Embassy tonight in opposition to a controversial power grab by Egypt's president, Mohamed Morsy.

At least 80 people have been injured and one killed in clashes with police who fired tear gas into the crowds. The unrest began after President Morsy issued a series of orders, which allow him to run the country virtually unchecked until a new constitution is written.

Morsy says his actions are meant to speed up reform and achieve political and social stability. Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PRESIDENT MOHAMED MORSY, EGYPT (through translator): I have said before and I repeat again, that I would never use a legislation against individuals, parties, men, women or Muslims or Christians for personal gains and to settle scores.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOREMAN: Now, this is all very problematic for the White House. Just two days ago, President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton were praising Morsy's government for helping broker a ceasefire between Israel and Gaza.

Today, the U.S. State Department expressed concern over the recent developments saying quote, "one of the aspirations o f the Egyptian revolution was to ensure that power would not be overly concentrated in the hands of any one person or institution."

Mohamed Morsy was elected in June with nearly 52 percent of the vote, but thousands are calling for his removal today as they stormed the headquarters of one of his chief support groups, the Muslim Brotherhood.

The crowd then marched on to Tahrir Square, chanting birth of a new pharaoh. Let's get the latest on this developing situation with CNN's Ian Lee who is in Cairo tonight. Ian, what's the situation right now?

IAN LEE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Tom, it's about 2:00 a.m. now in Cairo and the protests are still going on. We're still seeing clashes in and around Tahrir Square between the protesters and the police.

We're seeing a range of things thrown back and forth. Rocks, we've seen Molotov cocktails, we've seen tear gas. There are reports of police shooting into the air to scare off protesters. This is a very intense scene that we've seen.

We haven't seen anything like this really since a year ago when we saw clashes, when we saw dozens of people killed. This has really been the most intense set of clashes since then and all these protesters are angry about that power grab that you were earlier describing where President Morsy really now has no one overseeing him.

The judiciary, he has pushed that aside. He now has really full power and tomorrow, we're going to be watching closely, also, the judiciaries said they might strike basically grinding the whole country's court system to a halt in retaliation for this power grab.

And I also need to point out, there have been supporters of President Morsy out in the streets today. We saw hundreds of people at the presidential palace voicing their support for him saying this is the only way to move the country forward. But right now, tonight in Egypt, it's very, very, very divisive.

FOREMAN: Ian, one more question here. You mentioned about the idea this might expand possibly to a broader group tomorrow. Do you have any sense overall how much staying power this protest has? Because we've seen movements rise up in various countries and they burn out after 48 hours and move on, any sense about this one?

LEE: That's a good question. We've seen protests like this go to Tahrir Square demanding different things throughout, really since the revolution last year began. And that's the question.

We see tents going up in Tahrir Square, giving it a look like this is going to be a prolonged demonstration. Even we're still seeing hundreds, if not thousands of people still in and around the square at 2:00 a.m.

So definitely a lot of people are energized, but as the week progresses and people have to go back to work, will they stay in the square demanding that there is some sort of change that Morsy steps back on his declaration, that's to be seen, but right now, it looks like it is going to go ahead and have that sort of staying power.

FOREMAN: All right, Ian Lee, thanks so much for joining us there in Cairo. I know you'll keep us up to date on everything that's going on.

We want to bring you some more guests now. I want to bring in Joshua Stacher. He's met and spoken with Mohamed Morsy more than a half dozen times. He is affiliate with the Woodrow Wilson International Center and Khaled Elgindy is a fellow at the Saban Center for Middle East Policy.

Khaled, let me start with you and the same question I put to Ian there. Do you have a sense of this having lasting power? Is this a deep movement or is this a shallow movement?

KHALED ELGINDY, SABAN CENTER FOR MIDDLE EAST POLICY FELLOW: Well, it's a very good question. Of course, we have seen many times over the last 20 months or so where various groups have rallied in and around TAHRIR SQUARE with various demands.

This time though, I think we're seeing something, there's something is a little bit different in that they are speaking in a much more unified voice.

The opposition, the non-Islamist opposition is for the first time in a very long time, at least reading from the same sheet of music. Whether that will last I think is the question.

FOREMAN: Briefly, Khaled, if you could, what are the actual powers that the president has taken unto himself?

ELGINDY: Well, it's more like what powers hasn't he undertaken? He has full executive authority. He has also full legislative authority and he's essentially neutralized the third branch, which is the judiciary.

So they are now unable to challenge any of his decisions. And this is far more sweeping than anything that the previous military rulers had done or that Mubarak himself had done. So I think there is a lot of well placed skepticism about this sort of an action.

FOREMAN: Josh, some of the protesters there are basically saying that what they fear is that at this moment, we're watching the rise of a new dictator ship. Is that just hyperbole or they way over the top with that or is that a legitimate concern?

JOSHUA STACHER, WOODROW WILSON INTERNATIONAL CENTER FELLOW: I think that's a legitimate concern. I think that in many respects, when a president takes the kind of power and says it's temporary, the kind of injection that goes into that office is very difficult to kind of parse out in say six months or eight months after elections have happened and there's a new constitution.

FOREMAN: Josh, let me ask you about the timing of this whole thing. Is it just -- is your impression of this is, a sheer coincidence that he made this power grab right now because certainly, the White House has to be fearing.

He stood alongside us. He looked like he was with us, like he had our backing and now, he lunges for all this power and it makes the U.S. look complicit?

STACHER: Well, I think that protesters on the street will think that the United States is complicit whether it is or not. But you know, this plan wasn't just hatched the morning after President Morsy negotiated the ceasefire between Hamas and Israel.

so I really think that you know, they've been sitting and waiting to launch this as a you know, attempt because there's a lot of things going on. There's a lot of challenges to the legal, you know, basis of the Muslim Brotherhood.

There's lots of, the fact that there's been virtually no internal civilian or military security sector reform. The fact that you know, there's a court ruling in the drawer of the supreme constitutional court that could disband the constitutional constituent assembly.

So I think this was, you know, meant to pre-empt a lot of those. Not to mention Egypt just signed a $4.8 billion agreement with the International Monetary Fund and I believe that President Morsy feels like he needs to be unaccountable as they undergo these very intense neo-liberal economic adjustments.

FOREMAN: All right, Josh Stacher, thanks so much for being here, Khalid Elgindy as well. Obviously, it's a tense situation over there and a very important situation that will bear watching throughout this weekend. CNN will stay right on it.

Still OUTFRONT, is this the return of the cave men? Some Republicans are seeing signs that maybe their leaders are about to cave on promises not to raise taxes.

Reports that General Petraeus told members of his staff to share military reports and other sensitive documents with his mistress, Paula Broadwell.

And Israeli troops open fire on a crowd killing at least one Palestinian. What does this mean for the ceasefire? Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FOREMAN: Our second story OUTFRONT, Republicans turning their backs on the Norquist pledge not to raise taxes. The latest to do is Senator Saxby Chambliss of Georgia who says he does not care that he signed the pledge years ago. He's going to do what he feels is right.

Here's what long time anti-tax activist, Grover Norquist, said earlier on "THE SITUATION ROOM." Listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GROVER NORQUIST, FOUNDER AND PRESIDENT, "AMERICANS FOR TAX REFORM": The commitment he made to the people of Georgia was not to me. It was a written commitment to the people of Georgia. That he would go to Washington to reduce government spending and reform government, not raise taxes.

If he wants to change his mind and become a tax increaser so we don't have to reform government, he needs to have that conversation with the people of Georgia.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOREMAN: Douglas Holt Eakin is with the "American Action Forum" and Ethan Pollack with the Economic Policy Institute, they join us right now to talk it over.

Douglas, what do you think here? Is this smart repositioning by some Republicans out there or is this a civil war within the party?

DOUGLAS HOLTZ EAKIN, PRESIDENT, "AMERICAN ACTION FORUM": I think this is politics. I mean, the pledge has always been a political document and you know, over the years, it did have the virtue of focusing the attention on the spending side.

I mean, in the past 30 years, we've seen taxes go up, down and sideways, but we've never seen a sustained effort of controlled spending and we certainly have never seen the kind of entitlement reforms that this moment's going to require. So the politics are the politics of the moment.

FOREMAN: Now, Ethan, one of the things -- I know you worked with the Obama camp for a while. There's a notion in all of this that both sides were aware that in all likelihood, taxes are probably going to have to go up across the board.

At sometime in the not distant future simply to deal with the deficit and everything else out there, so if you're a Democrat, are you happy or unhappy that Republicans are getting on board because once that train starts rolling, it could hit the middle class, which the Democrats have sworn they won't touch.

ETHAN POLLACK, FISCAL POLICY ANALYST, ECONOMIC POLICY INSTITUTE: I mean, I'm definitely happy about it. Look, you know, I mean, it's Thanksgiving and I'm very thankful right now for millions of Americans who came out on November 6th.

And declared loudly that the tax reform in particular making especially the highest income Americans, you know, actually paying their fair share of taxes.

That that's a priority and that is something that should be pursued in context of the fiscal cliff. So you're right, the train is rolling and I think that it's nice to see even some Republicans now eventually realizing that taxes in particular tax fairness, does need to be a substantial part of this fiscal debate.

FOREMAN: Yes, but Ethan you just skated around my question there, which is that if you're going to have real tax reform, almost every economist I know says the middle class is going to pay more, too. How are Democrats going to handle that?

POLLACK: Look, I think the first thing that you need to do is make sure that the higher income households pay their share. At that point then we can have a conversation about we can do comprehensive tax reform.

Where we can broaden the base and we can then lower the rate and we can make sure that we are both getting the revenue that we need, but at the same time, the progressivity that we need to make sure the middle class are still strong.

But I think the first step, the last decade, you've had -- average family is not getting any type of raise when adjusted for inflation and you've seen the income of -- you know, the highest income Americans skyrocket.

So I think the first thing that we need to do is first solve that problem and then we can have a broader conversation.

FOREMAN: Doug, everybody in the world that I know of will vote for a tax for the other guy, but not for themselves. So when you hear Ethan say that. You hear the Democratic position on that, even as Republicans try to reposition, do you think we're going to have to see an overall repositioning of Washington?

EAKIN: Well, I think we have two very different problems. One is between now and the end of the year when we see sharp tax increases and sharp spending cuts that come automatically, which are a genuine threat to the economy. They're recipe for a devastating recession.

And what we need the leadership to do is to get us to the spring of 2013 safely and then in spring of 2013, we're going to have to have some sort of large deal on the debt. The level is too high. The growth rates are unsustainable.

The international ratings community has got its on the U.S. and said we have to see something happen and in doing that, we're finally going to see, you know, something that's gone for 30 years end.

Republicans for 30 years have said we're not raising taxes unless you fix those entitlement programs. They're dangerous to our future. The Democrats have said we're not touching our favorite entitlement programs until you raise taxes.

Both sides are going to have to make a deal in the spring and it's going to involve everybody. You're not going to be able to pick out certain subgroups. Everyone is going to be involved.

FOREMAN: Let me ask you this, Douglas and then I'll ask the same thing of you, Ethan. Grover Norquist just said a number of times in defense of his position, he said, look, what's wrong with saying to a politician, when you want my vote and you make a promise, you should keep that promise. What's wrong with saying that to either side about any topic?

EAKIN: So, I think that there's nothing wrong with that. I mean, this is about making political commitments, something politicians have to and should do. My own preference is not written pledges, but in fact, people who say this is what I believe and follow through on it.

So, you know, this is all about politics and there's no question about it. As I said in the outset, whether you like the pledge or not, I think one thing it did do was focus attention on the spending side, which is still under discuss.

We have an enormous spending problem, it's about entitlement spending. There's been no discussion of that so far and what the pledge it was forced some recognition that the threshold decision is to spend the money. Once you do that, you're going to pay for one or another.

FOREMAN: Ethan, your reaction to this whole idea that Norquist keeps saying, it's about taxes for him, but it's also about politicians being honest. If you want to be president or anybody else, you should mean what you say and you should pursue it in that fashion. What do you think?

POLLACK: Sure, I mean, I have nothing against pledges. You know, the politicians make to voters. I have a problem when they're pledging bad policy and the fact is, is that if you look at the fiscal cliff, there's a lot of bad policy in there, particularly on the side of the Bush tax cuts.

I mean, particularly for those on the higher end that cost a lot of money, yet at the same time, don't provide a lot of benefits to the economy. So when we're tackling the fiscal cliff, we should make -- we should ask ourselves, which are the most ineffective things that we can't afford anymore and the problem with the pledge is that it precludes you from actually tackling the fiscal cliff in a rational way.

FOREMAN: Keep thinking, guys, that down the line here, the chorus over and over is going to just be we all pay more and we all get less. Doug, Ethan, thanks so much for being here. We appreciate it.

Thousands of people paid a lot today cramming into stores everywhere. You might even be watching this on a new TV, but retailers needed more than hype. They needed red hot cash registers on this Black Friday. We'll tell you how sales added up today because a lot of jobs are counting on it.

In just a few weeks after Mitt Romney's defeat, the GOP is already looking forward to 2016. Say it isn't so and there's another Bush on the horizon.

Plus, we're following news of a massive gas explosion in Massachusetts. Take a look. We'll have details just ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FOREMAN: Our third story, a mad dash for Black Friday. Thousands of people rushed into stores across the country today. Look at them. They're looking for Black Friday sales while some shoppers didn't actually have to wait until Friday to get into bargain.

Some stores like Target, Toys "R" Us and Wal-Mart offered their Black Friday events on Thanksgiving Day itself. So did these Black Friday events and big promotions actually work?

Retail analyst, Dana Telsey, is out there reading the tea leaves. Dana, thanks for being here. Did you go shopping today?

DANA TELSEY, RETAIL ANALYST: Of course I did. Not only did I go shopping today, but yesterday also.

FOREMAN: What did you get for me?

TELSEY: You know what, it's not December 25th yet. You'll have to wait and see. I'll keep the suspense going.

FOREMAN: So, was this a good start, a bad start, what do you think?

TELSEY: I think it was a decent start. I think one of the things that's changing is since there's more hours that retailers are open, the traffic is extended over longer period of time.

I think it was decent. I think the level of promotions was the same as last year, but Black Friday is a game for retailers to gain market share and that's what they did this season.

FOREMAN: And this is a long shopping season, right? From this Black Friday to actually Christmas day, little bit longer than usual.

TELSEY: Exactly. It's typically between 26 and 32 days. It's 32 days this year. Christmas is on a Tuesday. So we have that weekend in order to be able to spend the last minute gifts and that's important to deliver holiday season gains that could be better than expected.

FOREMAN: So, Wal-Mart claims they had their best ever Black Friday event saying that in four hours last night, they processed almost 5,000 items per second. Now, that sounds like a lot, but Wal- Mart is huge. Does that sort of sales level indicate to you that really this is a great season or you know, we're kind of holding our own?

TELSEY: I think holding their own. I mean, they basically played it to win. They showed the great ads. They had very good doorbusters and consumers responded. If there's one thing that the American consumer knows how to react to, it's promotions and a deal. And that's what Black Friday is about.

FOREMAN: The National Retail Federation predicts that the increase in holiday sales will be about 4.1 percent. The last couple of years had been more like 5.6 percent. Why is it smaller this year do you think? TELSEY: Because number one, you're going up against tougher comparisons. You can't always best your best numbers yet and number two, retailers ordered less inventory this year than they did in the past.

If there's one thing retailers want to do, they want to come out of the holiday season with a profitable season not just a mark down season. And that's why a smaller increase this year than last year, but it's not all said until it's all done and that's December 25th and even a little bit of January.

FOREMAN: And worth remembering, if you're one of the shoppers out there, 40 percent of holiday sales take place in the ten days before Christmas. So keep a few extra bucks in your wallet. Dana, thanks for being here. Good shopping to you.

TELSEY: You, too.

FOREMAN: Thanks. Still OUTFRONT, new developments in the Petraeus sex scandal, reports today that he may have offered staffers the opportunity to share sensitive documents with his mistress, quite an opportunity that is.

And a new investigation tonight into the death of a 31-year-old woman when doctors refused to perform her abortion, she lost her life.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FOREMAN: Welcome back to the second half of OUTFRONT where we start the second half of our show with stories that we care about and focus on our own reporting from the front lines.

First, to Massachusetts, where a gas leak turned into a large explosion in downtown Springfield. Take a look -- the blast was caught on camera this evening. Look at that. We're told the ball of fire leveled at least one building and sent glass and debris flying through the downtown area. A spokeswoman of Baystate Medical Center tells CNN they're treating eight people for injuries suffered during the blast, but we're told no one's in critical condition.

Springfield is about 90 miles west of Boston.

Tonight, 12 people remain in serious condition following yesterday's massive crash on a Texas highway. The highway patrol tells us more than 100 vehicles were involved and a pile-up on a foggy interstate near Beaumont. Between 80 and 120 were hurt in all. The crash killed two people, a couple on their way to a gambling trip.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

V.J. LEGGIO, JR., PARENTS KILLED IN CRASH: My dad and I, we worked together, we had a good relationship and we had, got to spend time together golfing and fishing and I'm so thankful for that now. My parents were wonderful, loving people. All who knew them knew that and they'll be sorely missed.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOREMAN: Witnesses tell our local affiliate the dense fog made it impossible to see.

Good news up in New York, the city is ending its gas rationing program put in place in the days after superstorm Sandy. The rationings ends tomorrow. Mayor Michael Bloomberg says 85 percent of the gas stations are now running. Only 25 percent were opened just two weeks ago when the rationing begun.

New Jersey and Long Island stopped rationing gas last week.

A story we've been following for almost 10 months. Jailed Russian punk musician Maria Alyokhina is now in solitary confinement. According to a statement from her lawyer, Alyokhina was moved to a single prison cell for her own protection because of conflict with other inmates. Alyokhina and two other members of the band Pussy Riot were convicted of hooliganism in August, for (INAUDIBLE) the altar of a church to sing an anti-Vladimir Putin punk prayer. The musicians are currently serving two-year prison sentences.

It's been 477 days since the U.S. lost its top credit rating. What are we doing to get it back?

It was a good day for stocks. All three of the major indices rose by more than 1 percent on a short day of trading.

Our fourth story OUTFRONT: unraveling the Petraeus scandal. It just goes on and on.

According to a law enforcement official, federal agents are investigating whether former CIA Director David Petraeus instructed members of his staff to share military documents with his biographer- turned-lover, Paula Broadwell. Broadwell visited Petraeus on more than one occasion while he was running the war in Afghanistan and according to former staff members, she would often ask for records she claimed Petraeus wanted her to have.

The question tonight: did Broadwell have his permission to obtain these documents?

CNN's national security contributor Fran Townsend has been working on this story. She's a member of the CIA external advisory board. And Ron Kessler is the author of "The Secrets of the FBI".

Fran, let me ask you a really basic question here. If you just walk up to someone on a staff and say, "Hey, the general would like me to have classified documents," is that all there is to it? Would they likely hand them over based on that?

FRANCES TOWNSEND, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY CONTRIBUTOR: No, I mean, likely just on her word, no. But you have to understand the military culture. You know, I visited Petraeus in Afghanistan on business and he walks into a briefing, he speaks to you about sensitive military matters, the staff sees that. There's a military culture. And so, if you then ask for a document and suggest that the general has offered it to you in some way or sanctioned your having it, it's very difficult for a subordinate military member to either question the general's guest or the general himself about that.

And so, it's not really clear, did Petraeus actually direct that she could have these documents, did he communicate with his subordinate soldiers in his command? We don't know any of that. And so, it remains pretty unclear about the circumstances in which she might have obtained these documents.

FOREMAN: So, Ron, if it's a staff member who sees this sort of relationship or thinks they see such a relationship and they hand over information, is just the staff member in trouble or does this trickle up to the general as well?

RON KESSLER, AUTHOR: No, I think in the end, they will find in investigating this, that Petraeus did issue instructions. I just don't think staff members would be giving up classified information just because they see that he has a close relationship with Paula. So, I think eventually, the facts will come out and it will go to Petraeus and you know, clearly has bad judgment. We saw that with his affair and I think in this case, the same thing will be borne out.

FOREMAN: Ron, let me follow on that. Paula Broadwell has been cooperating with the FBI in this whole thing. They've got her computers, that sort of thing. Isn't this the sort of information they would have almost immediately when they have this level of cooperation or is this something that would just come out through parts of an investigation? Why are we hearing about it now?

KESSLER: Well, they really -- you know, apparently, purposefully delay this investigation until after the election and that's when they finally did the search. I got a call on October 10th from a long time FBI source telling me about the investigation and telling me that this would not go down until after the election. And sure enough, that's what happened. I was still working on the story.

And then when the resignation was announced, I was able to do a story on "Newsmax" within an hour, saying that an FBI investigation was behind the resignation, which would not come out.

But you know, if you just look at the dates, it's obvious that it was time to come out after the election. The day after the election is when the FBI finally informed Clapper, the DNI and then supposedly President Obama was told. I doubt that. I think he was told before by Eric Holder.

But the really serious thing in my mind is this lag time of many months during which Petraeus was allowed to stay in office even though the FBI knew that he was having this affair. When he could have been compromised, could have been blackmailed by the Russian foreign intelligence service, for example. And, apparently, it was a political decision. That's what really has agents furious.

FOREMAN: Well, Ron, I know there's a lot of discussion, too, about the timeline of it and how much political elements were or were not involved, we'll get on other shows I'm sure.

But I want to go back to Fran with a question here.

Fran, if somebody did this, if they pass on this information and they're found out, would that person likely be prosecuted then even if they were told by General Petraeus to do this?

TOWNSEND: Well, you know, Tom, look -- there are a couple of questions here that I think we have to parse out, right? So we don't know whether or not the general told them, but what an injustice it would be if you prosecuted the subordinate military officer for passing a classified document if he'd done it with the direction of the general. We've heard from the FBI that they believed that the initial classified information that came across was low level classified information, whatever that that is.

FOREMAN: Well, interrupt you with that, Fran, because you made an interesting point there. You and I were talking earlier and how there's classified information, then there's classified information. Meaning there is some classified information, which is classified just because somebody said let's make it classified. It's not actually that important. Is that fair to say?

TOWNSEND: That's right and the investigators we've spoken to have suggested that's what they initially found. Now, they found more material in the search of Paula Broadwell's home. She was cooperating with the FBI and that's led them to really want to find out.

In interviews of both Broadwell and Petraeus, both deny he provided the information. We don't know what she said about who did in fact provide it to her or what the general's involvement is. But if it is at the general's election, then it seems to me that both the general and whoever the military subordinate is who passed it would be in harm's way, if you will, for a prosecution.

FOREMAN: Ron, where do you think we are in this investigation? Are we getting near the end where someone's going to say here's the bulk of what we know? Are we still in the middle, the beginning? Where are we?

KESSLER: Well, clearly, this keeps unraveling. I think what we're going so see next is the result of the House and Senate Intelligence Committee investigations as to why they were not informed about this, because I know on a regular basis, the FBI informs those committees or at least the two top ranking people on those committees of much less sensitive investigations than this and yet they didn't tell them about this until after the election.

So they're going to get the facts. They're going to investigate the timing, and including why it took so long to actually bring to this a close, and why Petraeus is allowed to stay in office that long because they can call, for example, the agents on the case, they can get the real facts and get the records.

FOREMAN: OK. We're going to have to move on, I think, because we're running out of time here. But, Ron, thanks so much for coming in. Fran, as always, good to have you here. I hope you had nice Thanksgiving. Thanks for joining us on the day after.

OUTFRONT next, Israeli soldiers opened fire on a crowd, killing at least one Palestinian. Hamas says they were farmers going to work. Israel claims something else.

And officials launch an investigation into the death of a 31- year-old woman. Doctors refused to perform her abortion and she died.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

FOREMAN: We're back with tonight's "Outer Circle", where we reach out to our sources around the world, to hear what's happening out there. First to the border of Israel and Gaza. Where Israeli troops opened fire on a crowd killing at least one Palestinian. Hamas says the crowd was farmers going to work. Israel claims the people were rioters.

Our Sara Sidner is in Jerusalem. I asked her if these deaths could derail the cease-fire.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SARA SIDNER, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Tom, the Palestinian Authority has already come out with a statement saying they believe this has broken the cease-fire, but you have to remember that it is Hamas that is in control right now in Gaza and that Israel has not responded to this. This is an incident where Hamas says that there were 25 people injured. One person killed when Israeli soldiers opened fire on farmers.

However, the Israeli military having a very different take on what happened. They say they were groups of men trying to go under the fence, protesting Israel. And they fired a warning shot in the air and then when that warning wasn't heeded, they fired at their legs.

The Israeli military has not confirmed whether or not someone died or any of the injuries. But at this point, I think what we're not hearing from Hamas and not hearing from Israel, the cease-fire still holds and that's what a lot of civilians on either side of the fence are really hoping. But really in the end, they're hoping for a permanent solution, something I don't think is going to be easy to come by in the near future -- Tom.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOREMAN: Moving on to the Democratic Republic of Congo, where forces seem to be no match for a group known as M23. The rebels are trying to topple the government by gaining control of the entire country.

David McKenzie is in Nairobi and I asked him what the rebels were planning next.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Tom, rebels in the eastern Congo are pushing on to new front lines, both to the north and to the south, after they took a key town called Sake (ph). Thousands of civilians have fled the scene carrying whatever they can manage. More than 100,000 people are in need of desperate humanitarian assistance, says Oxfam. It all comes after the rebels took the key city of Goma earlier this week, from right under the U.N. peacekeeping force.

Right now, there are moves to go to the negotiating table. The rebel leader has been summoned to Uganda for talks, but people worried that with them saying that they want to liberate the whole of Congo, that this bloody situation could get even worse -- Tom.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

FOREMAN: Our fifth story OUTFRONT: the election is barely behind us, but speculation is already shifting to who will be running in the next cycle. Can you stand it? I can't.

One name bandied about is former Florida Governor Jeb Bush. That's right. The brother of President George W. Bush, part of the Bush political dynasty.

Maria Cardona, CNN contributor, Democratic strategist and a principal at the Dewey Group joins us now, along with Reihan Salam, CNN contributor, CNN contributor and "National Review" writer.

Reihan, let me start with you about this whole thing. Is Jeb Bush really going to run?

REIHAN SALAM, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, it's not clear right now. But I'll say this. Jeb Bush is widely regarded as a tremendously effective political operator and having been a successful governor of Florida. And the truth is, that had his name been Smith instead of Bush, I think a lot of people would have been wondering why he didn't run this time around. So, I think he's a formidable contender who brings a lot of assets to the table, including a very connection to the Latino community in his state.

FOREMAN: You bring up a really good point here. If you're a Democrat, Democratic side of the equation, you're saying sure, give us another Bush to run against because we think the Bush name is somewhat poison right now, Maria. But, but, Jeb Bush is fluent in Spanish. He's married to a woman who grew up in Mexico. He has strong ties with Latino communities in a big state with a big Latino vote. This is the kind of guy who could put Democrats on this, isn't it?

MARIA CARDONA, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, he certainly would give us a whole lot more competition than Mitt Romney did, that's sure. But that's not saying much.

Jeb Bush absolutely I think is a tremendous leader when it comes to the issues that are important to Latinos -- for example, immigration and education. He's got a very good name ID among Latino voters. He does have a Mexican wife, is fluent in Spanish, is very comfortable, the same way his brother George W. Bush was, around Latinos. And that is half the battle right there.

But I think the problem for Jeb Bush is absolutely his name sake, his legacy. And, you know, I know that a lot of people might be sick of legacies and people are talking about Hillary Clinton in 2016, but if it is, for example, Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush in 2016, a lot of voters are going to think back to the last Bush and the last Clinton and make a comparison. And that's not a comparison that Jeb Bush will win in any means.

All right. Just because I can't stand talking about 2016 yet.

Let's talk about the Senate race in 2014, Reihan. Senators McConnell, Graham, Cornyn, Chambliss are thought to be vulnerable to the Tea Party. I guess my question here is, is what do you think is going to happen in the next couple of years, because Republicans have to sort this out. How much they're going to lean more toward the base or more toward the fiscal conservatives in the Tea Party, or are they going to go more toward the middle? And in the end, can they get the Senate back?

SALAM: Well, I think getting the is that the back is going to be tough to do and it's going to depend on candidate recruitment. Particularly in states like Alaska, and Colorado and Louisiana where you have a pretty Republican electorates, but you have Democratic senators coming from those states. Now, as for this Tea Party insurgency idea, look, when you look at this cycle in 2012, if you look at 2010 as well, you had a lot of insurgent candidates who ran successfully against firmly, well-established candidates who had one statewide a number of times before.

It's not obvious to me that you're going to see a ton of donors and a ton of activists who are going to be fired up about that come 2014, having seen that the result of those Tea Party insurgencies in some cases threatened a winnable Republican candidate. So my guess is that you are going to see some moderation on that front, if only to win winnable swing states.

FOREMAN: Maria, let me ask about this. If I were a Democrat, know what I would fear in the Senate race? I would look at the most recent races and say if it weren't for some Republicans roaming off in the woods and shooting themselves in the foot, the Democrats would not have done as well. And that's something Democrats can't take too lightly as they head into the midterms.

CARDONA: Oh, absolutely, Tom. I think you're absolutely right. It will no doubt be very difficult in 2016 but it was very difficult this time around and -- I'm sorry, 2014. And 2014 is just by the sheer math of it going to be harder than it supposedly would have been this time around for Republicans.

Republicans blew it. Can Democrats count, though, on Republicans blowing it in the next two years? No. But that's why you see all of those Democrats who are up in 2014 going to continue to focus on the issues that their constituents care about and Mary Landrieu is very good at that. Mark Begich is very good at that from Louisiana and Alaska.

And so I think if they focus on the issues that are important to their constituencies, without regard to where the Democrats are, I think they have a very good chance of winning re-election and the Democrats have a good chance of keeping the senate.

FOREMAN: I think it's good advice for anybody. Never count on your enemy dropping out of the race basically.

Reihan, Maria, thanks for being here.

OUTFRONT next an investigation launched into the death of a 31- year-old woman centering on the explosive issue of abortion rights.

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FOREMAN: Finally tonight, officials in Ireland have launched a new investigation into the case of a 31-year-old woman who suffered a miscarriage and then was denied an abortion and died. CNN's Nic Robertson spoke with her husband.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice- over): He has lost his wife and now fears the truth behind her tragic death may be lost too.

PRAVEEN HALAPPANAVAR, SAVITA'S HUSBAND: We've seen some tampering of the medical records and basically, some key information in the medical records is missing.

ROBERTSON: Praveen and Savita Halappanavar met in India, married, then set up home in Ireland four years ago. He is an engineer. She was a dentist. They were happy here.

HALAPPANAVAR: She loved dancing. She forced me to dance with her a couple of times on the stage. We gave a performance and that would be the fondest memory, never have I gone on stage or I never had. I always had stage fear to go to speak out and the belief she gave me. It was unbelievable.

ROBERTSON: Together, they had dreams of a beautiful future, of children, their children, of having a family.

HALAPPANAVAR: She was looking forward basically. In a way, she found that she is at the right place. That's the reason why.

She knew and she was very well-organized as well, you know? She knew what she wanted in life. So that's the reason why she had decided to settle here on the long-term.

ROBERTSON: When Savita became pregnant, they were overjoyed. Then their ordeal began. Savita got back pain. Here at the Galway University Hospital, doctors told her she was miscarrying. Her baby would likely die. Savita's husband says they asked for a termination and were told this is a Catholic country, not while the fetus is alive.

HALAPPANAVAR: So we requested for a termination. We wanted to go back, you know, go home and think about the next pregnancy because it was a planned pregnancy. We were so happy. We wanted to have babies.

ROBERTSON: Three days after the request, the fetus died, was removed. Four days later, Savita was dead from a blood infection.

Ireland has been outraged. Protests in support of her not just here but across the world have urged the country's politician to update abortion laws, prevent similar tragedies.

There has been political fallout too. Abortion is a hot button issue in Ireland. The prime minister is under pressure to get a health service inquiry.

(on camera): Government steps so far have done little to inspire Halappanavar not just he says because they took weeks before announcing an inquiry, but when they did, three of the seven medical professionals on the investigation team were from the same hospital here where his wife died. Although they've now been replaced, other issues remain.

(voice-over): Not the least of which the missing medical records. Records the hospital declined our request to comment on.

HALAPPANAVAR: Basically made a request for termination and there is no notes of the request at all, any of the medical notes. And also, the response from the doctor is not in the medical records either.

ROBERTSON (on camera): What do you think has happened to it?

HALAPPANAVAR: We don't know. It's just strange that all other information is in there, you know, (INAUDIBLE) when requested for a cup of tea and toast and, you know, things like, you know, an extra blanket was given, all that is in the medical notes.

ROBERTSON (voice-over): He says he will settle for nothing less than a full public inquiry, where the health service, not just his wife's death, is investigated.

HALAPPANAVAR: Every single family person asked me how could this happen in a country like Ireland in the 21st century? Because it was just so simple. They knew that the baby's not going to survive, why wait? Think about the bigger life, which was the mother, my wife Savita, and didn't.

ROBERTSON: All he wants, he says, is the truth.

Nic Robertson, CNN, Galway, Ireland. (END VIDEOTAPE)

FOREMAN: And thanks for joining us. I'm Tom Foreman.

"ANDERSON COOPER 360" starts right now.