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Possible Break in Jimmy Hoffa Mystery; Robin Roberts Plans to Return to "GMA"; Timberlake Returns to Music; Royal Baby Due in July; Obama Pushes for Debt Ceiling Support; Biden Proposals on President's Desk; Behind the Golden Globes; Natalie Wood's Death "Undetermined"

Aired January 14, 2013 - 14:30   ET


BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: Some of the hottest stories here in a flash, rapid fire. Roll it.

The House of Representatives getting back to work today, the Senate returns next week. Congress' first order of business, voting on $51 billion for Superstorm Sandy victims. Of course, we'll also watch for new gun control policy ideas as well, and we are paying a lot of attention to the ongoing debt ceiling debate and potential government shutdown. More on that in a moment.

All but three states are in the midst of this grip of widespread flu. Look at this map, California, Hawaii, and Mississippi, and in parts of New York, getting a flu shot has been very, very tough. Governor Cuomo declared a public health emergency, there has been a run on the vaccine there.

Tony Zerilli, one of Detroit's most notorious gangsters, said that he knows where the body of Jimmy Hoffa is buried. Zerilli says Hoffa was buried in a field, just outside of Detroit, with plans to rebury Hoffa further away, quote/unquote, "upstate." But he says the second burial never happened. Here's what he told TV station WNBC.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How certain are you that Jimmy Hoffa is buried here in this field?

TONY ZERILLI, ALLEGED FORMER CRIME BOSS: Well, I'm as certain as I could possibly be. If I had money, I would bet a big sum of money he's buried over here.


BALDWIN: How about that? Jimmy Hoffa last seen in 1975 when he was 62 years old.

Her battle with a rare blood disorder has played out on morning television. But today, "Good Morning America" host Robin Roberts appeared on air with some great news.


ROBIN ROBERTS, HOST, "GOOD MORNING AMERICA": The last bone marrow test showed no abnormalities. Majority of the marrow is my sister's and it is healthy. Praise God. And what all this means, my doctors are waiting for this information to be able to tell me that I can begin the process of returning to the anchor chair. I'm coming home.


BALDWIN: Thank goodness for her. We, of course, wish her well. The 52-year-old told her fellow hosts she'll be doing what she called a dry run behind the scenes next week. She doesn't plan to return until next month.

The wait for Justin Timberlake fans is over. He released a new single earlier today. Take a listen. Some dancing in the studio, digging it. Called "Suit and Tie" featuring Jay-Z. Justin says it will be on the upcoming album he's calling the "2020 Experience," coming out later this year. It's his first new album since 2006.

And then there is this. Hip-hop has officially moved from the streets and the clubs to the ivory tower. The "L.A. Times" is reporting that University of Arizona, now the first in the country to offer a minor in hip-hop studies. I see you cringing to my right, Ben Stein. The elevation in academic stature came naturally. The school offered classes in the subject since 2004. You can minor in hip-hop.

St. James Palace today released the due date for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's first child, William and Katherine's baby is due in July. The couple had to reveal that Kate was pregnant because she was hospitalized last month with acute morning sickness.

Well, we're moving of minoring in hip-hop and we'll talk economics here. President Obama, maybe we'll talk hip-hop as well, in a final formal news conference before he takes the oath of office here in his second term spoke this morning, pushing for support on raising the debt ceiling.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: And Republicans in Congress have two choices here. They can act responsibly and pay America's bills, or they can act irresponsibly and put America through another economic crisis. But they will not collect a ransom in exchange for not crashing the American economy.

The financial well-being of the American people is not leverage to be used. The full faith and credit of the United States of America is not a bargaining chip and they better choose quickly because time is running short.


BALDWIN: So the president says there will be no ransom, you heard him say no bargaining chip in this whole debt ceiling debate. The deadline to raise that ceiling is approaching quickly. Some members in Congress say they're willing to shut down the government to avoid raising that limit now.

Joining me now is Ben Stein. It's nice to have you in person.

BEN STEIN, AUTHOR, ECONOMIST: Honored to be here. I'm very sorry the weather is so cold here in L.A. We apologize.

BALDWIN: Coldest day I hear in, what, 21 years.

STEIN: At least 21 years.

BALDWIN: So weather aside, let's talk about this debt ceiling because just for people to understand. This is not a matter of the government raising credit limit. This is a matter of raising the limit so that they can pay for what is already been bought.

STEIN: Right. It is extremely important. There is really a choice -- right, three choices. One, operate unconstitutionally, which is what Senator Harry Reid is proposing and pay the bills without having the money.

Two, raise the debt limit. Three, do something like pay only 40 percent of the bills as they become due because we are now, as a government, borrowing roughly 40 percent of every dollar we spend. That's a terrible situation.

And with respect to President Obama, he's completely correct, but he's not really talking about the elephant, the Republican and also American elephant in the room, which is the government is just spending too much money.

They're just spending money we don't have. We're heading towards a default. We're heading towards a real crisis. They're just spending too damn much money.

BALDWIN: So to go with his analogy of dining and ditching, if you're going to a restaurant not paying for what you bought, you're saying we're buying filet mignon when we shouldn't be.

STEIN: Absolutely, we should not be doing it. We have to get our country structurally correct and we're structurally in a deficit situation, so big, we're going to have $20 trillion deficit within maybe 36 months.

And we're going to be doubling that with a really not very long period of time and we're going to be in a situation where we'll never be able to pay our bills and be compelled to default. We have got to get the spending under control.

BALDWIN: I want to talk about a potential doomsday scenario and defaulting, but what do you make of the president saying I'm not negotiating with Congress on this? I'm not doing that? STEIN: Well, that's ridiculous. I mean, he's the president and it is the Republican House of Representatives, of course he has to negotiate with them. I mean, he always says --

BALDWIN: Then why say that?

STEIN: Well, it is a form of negotiation. That is -- BALDWIN: That is a form of negotiation, saying I won't negotiate?

STEIN: I'm going to give you a tiny bit of a history lesson. There used to be a big guy at GE who used to say to the unions, I'm absolutely not negotiating. It didn't work. This isn't going to work. Of course, he has to negotiate.

BALDWIN: OK. OK. What about doomsday scenario, right? Let me run through this. U.S. would default on its treasury bonds, would send markets into a tail spin, and would cripple the U.S. economy, hearing Ali Velshi saying our chief business guy basically saying this is way worse than anything we talked about when it comes to the fiscal cliff. And you, my friend, you're not exactly sunshine and lollipops all the time.

STEIN: It is not a trivial matter. It is a very, very big matter. But it is supposedly default on the U.S. debt, we would give people instruments saying when the debt limit was addressed seriously, when it was resolved, they would get their money, so there would be -- and plus interest on it.

So that will be resolved, but let's just -- it is very, very serious. We have been living beyond our means for a very long time. And chickens are coming home to roost. He's got to negotiate, but the Republicans have to negotiate too.

I mean, I've been a Republican probably twice as long as you've been alive, and I will say the Republicans have got to get up and say we're going to act responsibly here. He has to act responsibly too.

BALDWIN: Quickly, Colin Powell over the weekend saying the Republicans had a quote/unquote, "a dark vein of intolerance."

STEIN: I read several articles about it. I don't believe it. I mean, the Republicans have many more African-Americans in the cabinet at this point than President Obama -- or several more than President Obama does. They have been trying desperately to reach out to minorities.

I think at one point they were looking for the racist vote. That was a very, very long time ago. They're fully committed to being a multiethnic open party, and to call them otherwise is just preposterous.

BALDWIN: Ben Stein.

STEIN: Honored to be here. I'm so sorry it is cold.

BALDWIN: We'll deal with it. Thank you. Ben stein, appreciate it.

A congresswoman who meets with the vice president today behind closed doors, she's going to talk to me. That is next. We'll ask California's Jackie Speier about the best ways to reduce gun violence next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) BALDWIN: We talked about the president's news conference today and the hard-line he drew with Congress when it comes to the debt limit. The other bit of news concerns his gun violence effort.

He said the recommendations he asked of the vice president are on his desk right now. Keep in mind, the deadline is tomorrow. With me now from Washington, Representative Jackie Speier, Democrat of California, she is a member of the House. Congresswoman Speier, welcome.

REPRESENTATIVE JACKIE SPEIER (D), CALIFORNIA: Thank you. It's nice to be with you.

BALDWIN: The House Democratic task force here on gun violence, this is what -- you're part of this, you attended a briefing today given by the vice president. That's why we wanted to talk to you and we'll talk about that here in a moment. But, first, let's listen to the president on what he might be proposing.


PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, you can count on is that the things that I've said in the past, the belief that we have to have stronger background checks, that we can do a much better job in terms of keeping these magazine clips with high capacity out of the hands of folks who shouldn't have them, an assault weapons ban that is meaningful, that those are things I continue to believe make sense.


BALDWIN: Congresswoman Speier, you were in that briefing, as we mentioned, with the vice president. Did he give you any hints as to what might be in this proposal?

SPEIER: He reiterated what he believed the president was absolutely committed to, an assault weapon ban, and a high capacity magazine ban. He also spoke about what the president can do by executive action and there were some 19 different things that the president can do.

He didn't go into all of them. But certainly they will be considered by the president, much like George H. Bush, President Clinton and George W. Bush used executive action to try and, in one situation, restrict and in the other, open up the access to imported AK-47s and AR-15s.

So I think that there is much that needs to be done. There is much that can be done. And I'm not going to let just one bill be the defining way that we address this issue.

BALDWIN: Congresswoman, this is personal for you in a way, because you are probably one of the few members of Congress who actually has been shot multiple times. Can you tell me about that?

SPEIER: I was shot in Guiana back in 1978. I was shot five times and left for dead on an airstrip. I must tell you that when you survive something like that, and others perish, as did Congressman Ryan at the time and a number of NBC reporters and camera men, you feel an absolute obligation to do what you can to make sure these kinds of events don't happen again.

There is, in fact, a mass killing happening in this country every single day. Thirty two people lose their lives every day. And it took the death of children in Newtown that woke us up to the fact that we have got to do some common sense things.

We talk about responsible gun ownership, we talk about responsible dealers. Well, right now the laws in this country don't guarantee that guns get into responsible hands only and that dealers are only responsible. And we have to make sure that all of them are.

BALDWIN: But, you know, as part of these listening sessions that took place at the white house last week, had the NRA there, and the head of the NRA spoke with Candy Crowley yesterday. Here is a portion of that interview.


DAVID KEENE, PRESIDENT, NRA: When a president takes all the power of his office, if he's willing to expend political capital, you don't want to make predictions. You don't want to bet your house on the outcome. I would say that the likelihood is that they are not going to be able to get an assault weapons ban through this Congress.


BALDWIN: You mentioned assault weapons ban, one of the items the vice president mentioned possibly as part of his proposal. You heard what he just said, that coming from the NRA. What do you think?

SPEIER: Well, the NRA is going to use the muscle that it has used in prior congresses to try and fear, put fear into members' voting decisions, trying to tell them they're going to lose their elections. Interestingly enough, in 2008, more recently in 2012, the NRA did very poorly in terms of getting their candidates elected.

We have got to do what's right for the American people. We shouldn't have a situation where people are afraid to go to a movie, to go -- to take their kids to school, to just carry on their lives without fear that there is going to be a gunman there spraying an assault weapon at them. So we have to take some steps.

The fact that our background check does not even address 40 percent of the guns that are purchased in this country a year is just unexplainable. We have got to take steps to make sure we close those loopholes, make sure the dealers, in fact, aren't selling guns, that become crime guns. And that if they do, that they have to pay penalties.

BALDWIN: I know many of the American people are awaiting the details from these proposals that should be coming out later this week. We should hear from the president. Congressman Speier, thank you.

SPEIER: My pleasure.

BALDWIN: Up next, my red carpet chats with some of the hottest celebrities in Hollywood right now. That's why I'm here in Los Angeles, big night last night. Talked to Claire Danes, talked to Lena Dunham from HBO's "Girls" and this guy.


BALDWIN: I was fortunate enough to get to cover the Golden Globe Awards last night in Hollywood and I have done political conventions, I did the diamond jubilee in London and now my very first Hollywood red carpet.

By now we all know the winners, Ben Affleck, Argo, Les Mis, Daniel Day-Lewis' "Lincoln," Jessica Chastain and "Zero Dark Thirty," so I just want to focus on the moments here, the funny, and the heartfelt on stage and behind the scenes.


BALDWIN: Can we first talk about your tats because I just wanted to know what they are.

LENA DUNHAM, BEST ACTRESS IN A TV COMEDY SERIES: They all come from children's books. This is Ferdinand the bull. I have Eloise at the plaza on my lower back. I have an assortment of childhood ephemera.

DAVID O. RUSSELL, DIRECTOR, "SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK": I want to give a shout out to Deborah of Glen Homes School and all the parents and families there. How do you know that?

BALDWIN: Can I get a this is CNN from you?

JEFF DANIELS, ACTOR, "THE NEWSROOM": Hello. I'm Rory McIlroy, this is CNN.


BALDIWN: Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, they are getting rave reviews today. By the way, they were gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous, but hilarious as well.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Tonight, we honor the television shows that have entertained us all year as well as the films that have only been in theatres for two days.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: That's what makes tonight so special. Only at the Golden Globes do the beautiful people of film rub shoulders with the rat face people of television.


BALDWIN: They, of course, co-hosted the Globes. There was the moment, here he was, jaws dropped collectively there at the Beverly Hilton when former President Bill Clinton strolled on stage to introduce the movie "Lincoln."


FORMER PRESIDENT BILL CLINTON: A tough fight to push a bill through a bitterly divided House of Representatives. Winning it required the president to make a lot of unsavory deals that had nothing to do with the big issue. I wouldn't know anything about that.


BALDWIN: People are still parsing today, the famously private Jodie Foster's acceptance speech for a Lifetime Achievement Award.


JODIE FOSTER, ACTRESS: I have given everything up there from the time that I was 3 years old. That's reality show enough, don't you think?


BALDWIN: But would you like to know the highlight of my night? It was getting to meet and interview 26, 26, quickly going on 27, Lena Dunham who won best TV actress and comedy for one of my favorite shows on right now, "Girls" on HBO. So watch this.


DUNHAM: I just wanted to start, sorry, I'm super shaky. I wanted to start by saying the other nominees in this category are women that inspire me deeply and have made me laugh and comforted me at the darkest moments of my life. Julia, Tina, Amy and Zoe respectively have gotten me through middle school, and I worship them.

BALDWIN: "Girls."


BALDWIN: I mean, this is like crazy successful and you are 20 --

DUNHAM: It's 26, 27 in May.

BALDWIN: Have you wrapped your brain around this yet, this success you're having?

DUNHAM: It is a hard thing. It is just amazing to -- I'm not articulate about it. It is amazing to have an audience response to something so personal to you and to get to be in a room like this with so many people you admire, there is no way to talk about it without sounding completely cheesy.

BALDWIN: It is the writing and the delivery. The actresses and actors in the show pull it off. I'm addicted.

DUNHAM: Thank you. I have an amazing casting director, Jennifer Houston, incredible cast, people are my close friends. The collaborative nature of it, it never stops. We're collaborating up until the last moment up until the edit, yes. BALDWIN: You pushed the envelope in this show. I mean, it makes people come back. I'm sure it offends some people. But at the same time, why do you -- why do you -- why did you want to embrace that element and do those things? It is HBO, you can.

DUNHAM: I feel like, yes, when you're at HBO, they don't bleep anything out. I felt like there was a certain realism lacking from the portrayal of women in their 20s. I thought that sort of part of that -- part of that lack was from not -- was from shying away from sexual content and from political content and I really just wanted to make a show that captured the lives of my friends, a unique, ballsy and completed group of girls.

BALDWIN: It is realistic. That is what translates so totally well.

DUNHAM: Thank you.

BALDWIN: Let me ask you this, I'm doing something for "Glamour" magazine. They wanted to ask me five questions on how younger people want to become journalists. I want to ask you, because I'm sure you're hit up all the time, young people want to write and act and be successful in their 20s. What one thing would you tell young women?

DUNHAM: I think the most amazing thing about being a storyteller now for lack of a better word is there is so much available to you, you know, innovative, but inexpensive technology. The internet, an environment where you can -- if you have a story to tell, you can find the people who want to hear it, and so I think not sort of trying to fit yourself into any box or wait for permission to have your story told, but to use all these amazing modern resources.


BALDWIN: Could not have been nicer. That was before she won, keep in mind. Lena Dunham, congratulations to you.

Coming up next, the new review of Natalie Wood's autopsy showing some pretty shocking results here. It is a new twist in the mystery involving the actress' death.


BALDWIN: This just in to us here at CNN. The Los Angeles County coroner has just come out with this new report on the death of actress Natalie Wood. Here's the new detail. The manner of her death is now considered, quote/unquote, "drowning and other undetermined factors," drowning and other undetermined factors.

Last year, investigators reopened the case, confirming that Wood drowned off California's Catalina Island. Officials removed the quote/unquote, "accidental finding," given after her death back in 1981. Today's report also says that bruising found on Wood likely happened before she entered the water.

And much more on our breaking news here in to CNN about Lance Armstrong, we are just getting word he's apologized in person, went to the "Livestrong" headquarters in Austin, Texas, to apologize. More on that in a live report next.