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CNN NEWSROOM

What to Expect at Inauguration; Death Rates Down in War on Cancer; Keeping Inauguration Day Safe; Snow Falling in Deep South.

Aired January 17, 2013 - 13:30   ET

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


SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN ANCHOR: All right. Brianna, we mentioned, more than 270 mayors around the country are attending this conference with the vice president speaking now. But the gun control debate is one of the issues on the agenda. The mayors are also focusing on the nation's debt as well as unemployment and jobs.

And besides the vice president, other speakers today, including the education secretary, Arne Duncan, and rapper, M.C. Hammer, performing.

Watching here, this is Mayor Nutter, that we had mentioned before, out of Philadelphia. He is speaking before the conference.

And when President Obama took office four years ago, of course, what was the mood? Well, the inauguration, it was jubilant, but going into a second term, he's facing a much harder road.

Atlanta's mayor is joining us to talk about those challenges.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SKIP RIZZO, CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST, UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA, INSTITUTE FOR CREATIVE TECHNOLOGIES: I think the main mission of what we're trying to do in our lab, drag psychology kicking and screaming into the 21st century.

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: He's a wizard of the virtual world.

RIZZO: We're sort of like the unique alliance of Hollywood, the military and academia.

GUPTA: Also a chief combatant in U.S. military's battle against post- traumatic stress disorder, PTSD.

RIZZO: It's not unique to combat, but for veterans what it's become one of the signature woods of Iraq and Afghanistan.

GUPTA: Skip Rizzo -- he first grabbed headlines back in 2006 with his virtual reality PTSD therapy for vets. Today, he's getting in front of the problem with strive.

My colleague, Chris Lawrence, got a first look.

RIZZO: I want to prepare people to deal with stress better. And if that doesn't work out, help them fight through the challenges in the aftermath of stress.

Hi. I'm Skip Rizzo, clinical psychologist at the University of Southern California, Institute for Creative Technologies.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MALVEAUX: President Obama takes the oath of office Monday on a Bible that belonged to Abraham Lincoln and one that belonged to Martin Luther King Jr. It takes place on the holiday honoring the Reverend King. After the symbolism, the ceremonies, celebrations, and, of course, the president, beginning a second term, facing some challenges from the first four years.

Joining us, Atlanta's mayor, Kasim Reed, to talk about what's ahead.

You are one of the insiders now. Anything -- you put in the time, the work, were you in Iowa, across the country. Anything that you learned about the president that surprised you?

KASIM REED, (D), MAYOR OF ATLANTA: That surprised me? No. He was as tough as I thought, and I think that -- I think he was going to do what was necessary to win, and I think that he wants to be president. Very much. I think he loves being president.

MALVEAUX: What gives you that impression?

REED: Because I know how tough this campaign was, and I know that there were moments in the campaign where if he did not really want this job, he could have fallen apart, and he was central to holding the campaign together during very tough times.

MALVEAUX: Looking forward, what do you think one of the things is that he is going to really have to excel in? Because there was so much excitement four years ago and so many people in love with him and now the bar is a lot higher?

REED: Yes. I think that the president's going to have to spend more time than he typically would with members of Congress and other people. Top galvanize and maintain public support.

I think during the first term, because of the incredible demands involved in preventing the economy from going into a great depression got a lot of leeway in terms of not spending personal time with member, leaders, both elected and non-elected, not opening up the White House. I don't think he'll be able to do that and maintain his coalition over the next four years. And I think that's going to require a lot of growth on his part.

MALVEAUX: Do you think it was legitimate, the criticism, even the suggestions he got, look, you've got to reach out more, even to people you don't like or agree with?

REED: Some of it was legitimate, but what I don't think that people gave a fair amount of discussion to was the out-sized amount of venom directed at this president. And I don't think that people had a real sense of just how bad things were in America. And I think that the president intentionally did not want to convey how terrible things were because, fundamentally, he's an optimist and a pragmatist. So he really wouldn't walk around and describe to you, except in very rare times, how terrible things were, and how close the country was of really having the economic system seize up --

(CROSSTALK)

REED: -- how close the country was --

MALVEAUX: Did he ever discuss this with you? Did he ever?

REED: Oh, sure. We had a meeting in the White House, in the White House with a small group of governors and mayors during the teeth of the tough times around the health care battle, where he would describe just how terrible things were. There was a meeting with Valerie Jarrett. Tim Geithner was in there room on that day. And he was describing, in detail, how close we were to having the economy literally seize up, and that if certain things had not been done, we could have been in a position where folks went to the ATM and couldn't get cash out.

And so I think that the president should be cut some slack regard to the amount of time that he spent with folks like me and others. I don't think he'll be able to do that in the second term.

MALVEAUX: What does he really want to do? What is important to the president? You know him well. What is in his heart?

REED: The president is focused on fundamental fairness. If you look at everything that he has been focused on since his re-election, his concentration has been trying to bring fairness back to the country. I think the president feels very passionately that over the last 10 years under President Bush that the deck got stacked against ordinary folks, and that the interests of the most blessed were really placed above everybody else. And when you look at what he has done, position by position, the fights that he is fighting are for ordinary people to have a shot.

MALVEAUX: What is his greatest challenge going forward? What is personally going to be difficult for him, as a leader who is still growing?

REED: I think his greatest challenge is going to be the Republican leadership's failure to deal with their loss.

MALVEAUX: But his -- his -- looking inside himself, what does he feel like he can improve on?

REED: I don't know. I don't know the answer to that. I think that this outreach, this determined dialogue, reaching out to people and expanding the conversation, expanding the number of people who give him advice and input is going to require the most growth from him. Because I think that he's most happy with people that he's very comfortable with, who he trusts and who he's -- he's now been through two incredible battles with a very core group of people who he values and trusts. Stepping outside of that circle, after you have had the success that this president has had, I think it's going to require a great deal of growth, Suzanne.

MALVEAUX: One thing that a lot of people are looking at is the cabinet, and how the cabinet looks. You've got top positions. You're talking secretary of state, defense, CIA, chief of staff, all white men. There are not a lot of positions left for African-Americans, Hispanics and women?

REED: Yes. Well, you know, I don't push back on that a bit. I mean, I think when you look throughout the administration, the administration is quite diverse. But I think the president has heard the concern around diversity loud and clear. And I think that you're going to see him responding to that over the next few days.

MALVEAUX: Maybe you'll be one of those guys?

REED: No.

(LAUGHTER)

I'm going to be mayor of Atlanta. Hopefully, he'll let me come back here.

MALVEAUX: You're always welcome.

REED: Thank you.

MALVEAUX: Thank you very much.

Good news in the war against cancer. A step such as getting rid of the cigarettes, helping decrease the risk. What else should we be doing? We look at the answer, up ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MALVEAUX: Good news in the fight against cancer. The American cancer society says the overall death rate in the U.S. declined 20 percent over the last 20 or so years. The report says that the deaths of 1.1 million people were avoided because of this war on cancer.

I want to bring in Dr. Otis Brawley. He's the chief medical officer the American Cancer Society.

And, Dr. Brawley, thank you so much for being here, for good news.

(LAUGHTER)

OTIS BRAWLEY, CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER, AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY: Yes.

MALVEAUX: Not often we hear good news when we talk about cancer. Give us the statistics. Why the decrease here?

BRAWLEY: The decrease has occurred over the last 20 years primarily because people stopped smoking or people decided not to start smoking. Secondarily, some of our early detection messages actually do save lives, and people have been listening to them. And then we've had tremendous improvements in our treatment for cancer. Research really has given us some answers, and we're actually able to save some lives to prevent some people from dying from cancer.

MALVEAUX: Are people, are there more people essentially, who are living with cancer, who, say, back in the peak of the cancer epidemic, if you will, back in the '90s, who are now able to carry on, who would have passed away?

BRAWLEY: Yes, absolutely. There is a group of people for whom cancer has become very much like other diseases like diabetes. They live with them. They still have cancer, not cured but are able to go to work, function, able to do regular activities of daily living while they still have cancer. Then there's a group of people who have cancer and some of our treatments are curing them.

MALVEAUX: I want to bring up this statistic, a 20 percent decline in cancer deaths. Very good. Stats say that more than 1.5 million new cancer cases are going to develop this year, leading to 500 -- more than 500,000 deaths. Is there something we can be doing to even help better, to lower that number?

BRAWLEY: Yes, absolutely. The study shows that we're doing good, and we're making progress, but the study also shows we can make more progress. We can do much better. If we simply start doing many of the things we all know that we should be doing, then we'd actually save even more lives.

MALVEAUX: Like what, for instance?

BRAWLEY: 20 percent of Americans are still smoking. We need to stop smoking. The obesity epidemic is actually pushing these numbers up. Obesity causes at least 12 different kinds of cancer. And if we just got people to start doing a little built more exercise, modifying their diet, decreasing caloric intake we could actually save more lives.

MALVEAUX: Sounds simple but it's so, so hard for a lot of people. How did we compare to other countries around the world?

BRAWLEY: Unfortunately, we are actually the 33rd country to have a 20 percent drop in mortality. We have all of these amazing technologies and we have all this beautiful, amazing American medicine, but are not applying the things we simply know we ought to apply, and we're not applying them to the entire population. We have data to show the 20 percent to 30 percent of women with breast cancer get less than optimal care. We can improve the coordination of the care that people are getting in the United States, and we, of course, need to focus more on prevention of disease.

MALVEAUX: All right. We're going to focus on the good message, the good news out of today, and, of course, continue to take care of ourselves and encourage others to do the same.

Doctor, thank you for joining us. Appreciate it. BRAWLEY: Thank you.

MALVEAUX: All right.

Well, some call it a minor security glitch that could cause major problems in the inauguration. We're taking a closer look at what is being done to keep everybody safe.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MALVEAUX: Monday, Inauguration Day, meaning Washington is about three things right. We're talking planning, choreography and, of course, security. The people in charge of the president's safety know it takes just one glitch to turn the big into a big mess.

Here's Brian Todd.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Joe Hagan remembers his first job working security. January 2001, just after George W. Bush's swearing in, Hagan was in a motorcade moving towards the White House.

JOE HAGAN, FORMER WHITE HOUSE DEPUTY CHIEF OF STAFF: Turned down Pennsylvania Avenue and the military aide, who was in the right front seat of the car I was riding in, turned around and said, sir, there is a gas mask under your seat. Get ready to put it on.

(LAUGHTER)

Which is little startling.

TODD: That was to prevent the possible tear gassing of protesters.

Later, as deputy White House chief of staff under President Bush, Hagan coordinated security and logistics for big event, like summits and trips to war zones and inaugurations.

As we looked at the buildings President Obama will pass, Hagan said, the Secret Service, the lead security service for the inauguration, will make sure the buildings are clear of potential snipers. Elsewhere, manhole covers will be welded shut and SWAT teams will be deployed all over the city, plain clothes officers in the crowds, bomb-sniffing dogs and even teams trained on weapon was mass destruction. And --

DEBRA EVANS SMITH, ACTING FBI ASSISTANT DIRECTOR: Our dive team and intelligence analysts will be working around the clock, our hostage negotiators.

TODD: That FBI official spoke to us where inside the multi-agency communication center where security teams will do real-time monitoring of surveillance cameras posted on buildings and roads. They will share tips and incident reports.

(on camera): With all the check points, monitoring stations and other precautions, it's this stage, the parade route along Pennsylvania Avenue, where the real unknown comes in. It's often along here, where the president gets out of his car.

(voice-over): That's when the president is most exposed and the crowds are massive.

(on camera): If he's in this area and walks, what's going through your mind?

HAGAN: Well, what's going through my mind is having faith in the plan and assuming that the agents are doing their job.

TODD: Hagen said the Secret Service often choreographs where the president gets out of his limo and where he gets back in, a tightly held secret.

When it's over, a big sigh of relief.

HAGAN: And event of this magnitude takes hundreds of thousands of people to execute effectively. Those people tend to not have a lot of fun.

TODD: Hagan says no matter how smoothly the day goes, security officials will still conduct a thorough review after the event so they can tweak their practices for the next time.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

MALVEAUX: Brian Todd is joining us from Washington.

Brian, I have to say, one of the things that makes you nervous is when you see them coming down Pennsylvania Avenue, out of the vehicles, and everybody is just kind of a little bit on pins and needles. They are excited, but we get nervous when we see that. I imagine security feels the same way.

BRIAN: They do, Suzanne. Everybody we've talked to who has ever been involved in that says we just have a little gasp when that happens in anticipation. One thing that Joe Hagen pointed out in that piece is the Secret Service choreographs that. They know at what point he's going to get out and at what point he's going to get back it. They plan it very carefully. So, of course, they have officers crawling all over the area just to make sure it's OK.

Still, it's a massive crowd, you're outside, you are exacting with people. Literally, anything can happen.

MALVEAUX: Brian, do have a sense at all of the numbers of folks out there in charge of the president's security?

TODD: The overall numbers, those are tough to get at. We do know -- this is from the D.C. police -- that some 2,000 officers from 86 jurisdictions are coming in from out of town. That's just people from out of town. Law enforcement and D.C. has about 4,000 police officers. Most will be working that day. That doesn't count the Capitol Hill Police and the Park Police and the Secret Service. So you have 2,000 officers coming in from other jurisdictions, out of town in addition to all of those people. There won't be more law enforcement than people in the crowd, but it's close.

MALVEAUX: All right, Brian, thanks. I will be joining you in the next couple of days to cover the inauguration.

Good to see you.

The weather in the south has been mild. All that's about to change. Chad Meyers is about to show us where the snow is starting to fall.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

MALVEAUX: In the Deep South, you are talking about snow, sleet, temperatures bringing no to Mid-Atlantic States as well.

Chad Meyers, who is taking a look at all of this.

CHAD MEYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Snowing in Tuscaloosa and Birmingham.

MALVEAUX: Wow. Really?

MEYERS: Yes. Places that don't have the equipment to get rid of it. The good news is temperatures are above 32 in most spots. After dark tonight, if you have snow on the ground, it's wet, it will get cold enough to freeze. That's the cutoff. Things get cold enough, you see the snow in Birmingham. Snow in Atlanta, but this is not a panic situation. Most it snow in the city. I'm still the bread is still flying off the shelves. But the rain is now still in Atlanta and temperatures around 50. The snow comes in late tonight. A dusting at the very, very end of the storm.

Washington, D.C. sees rainfall and starting to cool down the atmosphere. When it cools down enough, that rain turns to snow. A couple of inches for you. Same for Richmond, Virginia, as well. This entire area from Roanoke to the Piedmont in North Carolina could get a lot of snow. Maybe a foot of snow before it stops.

Here's the rain in D.C. Most is still in northern Virginia. It's coming to you soon and it will be piling up. Three to five inches in northern parts of Alabama. Here across Blairsville and Blue Ridge, but in the mountains, that's when we start to see snows, into Raleigh and Charlotte and Winston-Salem, eight to 10 inches, and Roanoke. You go into D.C., could see snow. In D.C., there will be much more snow on the southside of the city to the north. Silver Spring compared to northern Virginia could be drastic, from one inch to three or four depending on where you are from north to south across D.C.

MALVEAUX: Do we think it will melt by Inauguration Day?

MEYERS: Yes. No question about it. It will be 40 degrees tomorrow.

MALVEAUX: All right.

MEYERS: It comes and goes right? It doesn't stick around. Make that snowman quickly. (LAUGHTER)

MALVEAUX: Tell us about last year. It was like one of the world's warmest on record?

MEYERS: Oh, yes, it was. This year was the warmest year on record for parts of the United States, the entire United States. The warmest year ever was 2012. We know this is happening now, and we know this is happening because we've had records for so very long here, this pond -- and we are talking about flowers blooming 10 to 20 days earlier than they did 150 years ago, bringing these spring blooms into bloom in parts of the country. The 12th warmest record across the globe for 2012, the warmest year on record for North America, and now we are seeing flowers 10 days in some spots 20 days earlier than they should have been popping up.

MALVEAUX: Everything is changing. I love the warm weather, but we need to see if that's a good thing or not.

(LAUGHTER)

(CROSSTALK)

MALVEAUX: All right, Chad, thank you very much. Appreciate it.

MEYERS: Sure.

MALVEAUX: CNN NEWSROOM continues with Brooke Baldwin.