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CNN NEWSROOM

More Resignations at Rutgers; Dismal Jobs Report, now Dow Dipping Lower; Is Marijuana Legalization in our Future?; Prince Denied Kiss by 4-Year-Old; Mrs. Obama's Verbal Slip; "The Balcony is Closed"; Kevin Ware Laughs with Letterman

Aired April 5, 2013 - 09:30   ET

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


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FREDERICKA WHITFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: The Rutgers coach fired over the video clips showing him shoving and berating videos will expect a soft landing. A spokesman for the public university says Mike Rice is expected to get a $100,000 bonus for longevity. He had been the men's basketball coach for three years and earned more than $655,000 last year. I'm joined now from New York by CNN's Pamela Brown. So, Pam, Is this sort of a golden parachute?

PAMELA BROWN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Fredericka, this is not a golden parachute but there could be. The $100,00 we're talking about here is a longevity bonus, as you said. This was written in Mike Rice's contract with the university. Because he finished out the season, the university is contractually obligated to give Rice this money. However, had Rice been fired instead of suspended back in December when officials were aware of this video we see, he would not be walking off campus with this bonus. As a public employee, Rice has the right to more termination protections than if he worked at a private company. So, under his contract, Rice was supposed to receive $750,000 for 2013. We reached out to a university spokesperson who tells CNN that details of a severance package for Rice are being worked out. So, there would be more money on the way for Rice in addition to this $100,000 bonus he is receiving.

WHITFIELD: Wow, okay. We also learned that Rice is not the only one leaving campus right now. Is that correct?

BROWN: Yeah, that's right. We have learned that on the heels of Rice's firing Wednesday, the assistant basketball coach, Jimmy Martelli resigned the same day. And you can see in the video we obtained from ESPN, several incidents of similar to Rice's behavior. That was a picture of Martelli, and now here's the video where Martelli is seen aggressively shoving players and at least one instance where he called a player a derogatory name.

He was hired at Rutgers back in 2010 after three seasons as an assistant under Rice at another university. In fact, players tell ESPN Martelli was commonly referred to as baby Rice. In a statement obtained by CNN, Martelli says I am sickened that as an assistant coach I contributed in any way to an unacceptable culture. Wednesday I resigned from Rutgers and I hope that coaches on all levels will learn something important about these events. For my actions, I am deeply sorry and I apologize to the players from the bottom of my heart. Rutgers gave no reason for Martelli's resignation.

WHITFIELD: Wow, all right that's pretty remarkable stuff. Pamela Brown, thank you so much.

Support of getting high is at an all-time high for the first time ever, a majority of people say it's time to legalize pot. Straight ahead in the NEWSROOM.

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WHITFIELD: Welcome back. Breaking news. Earlier we reported the jobs report was out with a dismal 88,000 new jobs, half of what was expected, and already we're seeing perhaps a response on the markets. Dow down about 150 points. It fluctuates by the minute. We'll get a closer look at the markets and if indeed there is a correlation between the jobs report and what we're seeing with the money markets.

Onto politics now, public opinion in favor of legalizing marijuana, it's an all-time high. For the first time since polling began on the issue, more people say that marijuana should be legal than those who say it should be illegal. Well, look at the numbers from Pew Research Center, 52 percent say it should be legalized. In November, voters approved legalizing pot in Colorado and Washington state. A historic move, but maybe no surprise since Pew's poll shows support for legalizing pot has grown among nearly every demographic since 2010.

Does this mean the tide is turning? Joining us now Ana Navarro, CNN contributor and Republican strategist, good to see you. And Jason Johnson, political science professor and chief political correspondent for "Politic365." Good to see you as well.

Anna, you first. Support has increased among Republicans, but they're still far less supportive, and independents the most supportive. How does that impact the party? Especially this so-called makeover of the Republican party in your view?

ANA NAVARRO, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: You know, I don't think that the marijuana issue is a banner issue for the Republican party and there is some dissent within the party. There is a significant faction that is libertarian. And it's kind of like do your thing, you want to get high? Okay, we won't get in the way. People may not be supportive of it, but they're not focusing on the social issues. So I think you're going to see some changes even within the Republican party. What's happening, though, Fred, is as it becomes legal in states, Republicans are also pro state rights people, so there is a conflict of different interests going on for Republicans on this issue, but it's still a very difficult issue for most Republicans, particularly generationally, the older generation to accept.

WHITFIELD: And so Jason, maybe it's a difficult issue too for the president. He said he does not support legalizing marijuana, but when you hear public opinion and according to the Pew research, more than half of those polled say they are okay with it, might this create an uncomfortable situation for the president, on how he directs policy moving forward? JASON JOHNSON, CHIEF POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT, "POLITIC365": Not really, the president can't get through meaningful gun control and it's pretty obvious how the public felt about that. Gun control, gay marriage, immigration, I think that marijuana will be very, very low on the list of things that Barack Obama will try and address. It's not just an issue of the public likes it, but certain segments of the public are strongly against it. You have a lot of police departments that are not necessarily in favor of massive legalization of marijuana because there's a lot of federal funds they won't be getting anymore for drug interdiction. I don't think this will change any of Obama's policies any time soon.

WHITFIELD: Let's look at the states where any marijuana use is illegal. Take a look at the map, 26 states in red, have not legalized medical marijuana, nor have they criminalized marijuana, even in more blue states like Illinois, so, Ana, can we expect this to ever change or perhaps change soon?

NAVARRO: I don't think it's going to change soon. I can see that one of the states on that map is my state of Florida, I can tell you that chances of legalized marijuana getting through the current legislature, and the legislature that is to come in the next few years is zero to none. But at the same time, I think we have to watch what happens in Colorado and Washington. If they are able to regulate it, able to make money off of it particularly, if states see that other states are making money off regulating marijuana, watch out with this. But it's a slippery slope, and I think a lot of states not ready to go there yet.

WHITFIELD: Jason?

JOHNSON: Yeah, I mean I think that's what's going to happen. We don't want a situation like "The Wire," where we just have open drug markets, people don't want that, but there need to be substantive and reasonable plans in place. Juror Polis (ph) of Colorado has been arguing for this for a long time. So, it's not just what's going to happen in Colorado, but can the same plan apply to New York,can the same plan apply to Virginia? There are a lot of different places, they're all going to wrestle with this, but I don't think the federal government is going to get involved, not with so many other important issues on Obama's agenda.

WHITFIELD: All right, Jason Johnson, Ana Navarro, good to see you both. Thanks so much.

JOHNSON: Thank you.

WHITFIELD: All right, let's go back to Wall Street. Now, we've got breaking news. The markets taking a dip. Now, the Dow down about 135. I told you it was fluctuating, well here we go with that roller coaster ride once again. Alison Kosik joining us now.

So, are we talking about a real correlation between those numbers and the jobs report out this morning that was a bit disappointing?

ALISON KOSIK, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, very disappointing, not just a bit, but very disappointing. And you're seeing a direct correlation with the sell-off right now on Wall Street and disappointing job numbers. One analyst said get ready for stocks to be punished today and he wasn't kidding with the big jobs miss. What we found out was that only 88,000 jobs were added to the economy in March. That's 100,000 jobs short of what was expected. Clearly hiring slowing down in March.

The worry is that this could cause a huge ripple effect in the economy. When you see very few jobs being created, that affects consumer sentiment, that effects consumer spending. That affects business profit and effects business investment. So you see how this domino happens.

Now, just when you thought nothing could stop the stock run-up, think again. After rallying for months, this may be the catalyst for a pullback, this slowdown in the jobs market. Here is what's really troubling, Fredericka the slowdown in the jobs market, is happening before the true impact of forced budget cuts has really hit the economy. You can kind of see that in the number of government job losses that happened in March. Only 7,000 jobs lost in March. I say only, because you compare that to February, where 14,000 government positions were lost. And in January 9,000.

So, we've yet to see the full impact of those spending cuts. So this reading today though, on the plus side, at least how Wall Street sees it, the plus side could be that the fed is expected to continue with this stimulus money, pouring it into the market, pushing investors to the stock market, trying to create the wealth effect, at least after today. But one thing's for sure, it's interesting going from a jobs reading that we got in February, where we kind of struggled to find anything bad in that report, to a reading in March that doesn't have a whole lot of good in it.

WHITFIELD: All right, Alison Kosik, thank you so much for that.

All right, and we'll be right back with much more in the NEWSROOM, after this.

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WHITFIELD: All right, checking our top stories.

Right now rescuers are digging through the rubble of a collapsed building in Western India. At least 35 people are dead and dozens of others are injured. Police say the building was still under construction and the first floors were illegally occupied.

A cooling system for the damaged Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan is back on line after it lost power for several hours this morning. The day's outage is one of several for the nuclear site damaged in an earthquake and tsunami back in 2011. Other outages have been blamed on rats chewing through the cables.

And Prince William dissed for a kiss? Say it aren't so, take a look right here the handsome royal, oh, man, leaning in, to give a little kiss to a 4-year-old and she says, no, I don't want it. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PRINCE WILLIAM, UNITED KINGDOM: You want a kiss?

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD: Oh man. So he went in, as you see there, and she pulled away. She'll probably regret that later I bet.

All right. In Washington now, the First Lady, Mrs. Obama, making a bit of a Freudian slip perhaps Thursday while describing her life at the White House.

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MICHELLE OBAMA, FIRST LADY OF THE UNITED STATES: -- me as a busy single mother. Or I should say single as a busy mother, sometimes that when you got the husband as President, it can feel single. But he's there.

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WHITFIELD: Oops and recovery. She wasn't alone in the verbal missteps however. Her husband the President is taking some heat this morning over comments that he made about California's Attorney General, Kamala Harris. He praised her and then said quote, "She also happens to be by far the best looking attorney general in the country." So guess what? That comment lit up social media with cries that the President was sexist.

One woman tweeted this saying, "On what planet in his mind did he think that sounded like the right thing to say?"

One another sarcastically wondered wonder if Eric Holder's feeling were hurt.

All right, legendary film critic Roger Ebert passed away at the age of 70. More on his life and legacy, right after a quick break.

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WHITFIELD: He helped coin the phrase "two thumbs up", and shined the spotlight on unknown films. Movie critic Roger Ebert died at the age of 70.

Our A.J. Hammer has this look back at Roger Ebert's career.

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A.J. HAMMER, HLN HOST, "SHOWBIZ TONIGHT" (voice over): His quick wit and thumbs up, thumbs down movie reviews earned Roger Ebert's fame as one of America's most prominent film critics. The Illinois native said his love of cinema came at an early age.

ROGER EBERT, FILM CRITIC: I started going to the movies when I was a child like everybody did. My aunt would take me to the grown-up movies. My dad took me to see the Marx Brothers. And I guess I just loved movies.

Ebert began writing film reviews for the "Chicago Sun Times" in the late 60s, and in 1975 was the first film critic to win the Pulitzer Prize for criticism. In 1970 he dabbled in screenwriting co-authoring "Beyond the Valley of the Dolls" with Russ Meyer.

In 1976, Ebert teamed up with a competitor, "Chicago Tribune" film critic Gene Siskel to host a weekly movie review program on local TV. Within a few years it was put into syndication, and Siskel and Ebert's thumbs up, thumbs down rating system soon became their trademark.

EBERT: Two thumbs up had never been applied before in human history to anything. The phrase "two thumbs up" was not in use. People said "thumbs up." And so today when people say I give a "two thumbs up" they're quoting us. And so that's what we trademark because we didn't want every film critic in the country to start doing that.

HAMMER: In 1999 Siskel died from complications stemming from a brain tumor operation. The show's title was changed to "Roger Ebert and the Movies." A short time later fellow "Sun Times" columnist Richard Roeper became permanent co-host of the show which was later titled "Ebert and Roeper".

RICHARD ROEPER, FILM CRITIC: And then you have all of these great actors, Roger.

HAMMER: Roger Ebert also published annual collections of his film reviews as well as several film guides. Not one to be left behind, Ebert embraced social media actively tweeting, never losing his voice despite battling both thyroid and salivary gland cancers and undergoing numerous surgeries in recent years.

EBERT: My legacy, if there is one, will have to do with supporting films that people might not have seen and supporting directors that -- that deserve support. Of course I review the big blockbusters and the commercial films, but from the very beginning it's been very important to me to go out and look for independent films, documentaries, first films by young directors and foreign films because those are the ones people need to hear about.

Until then, the balcony is closed.

HAMMER: A.J. Hammer, CNN New York.

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WHITFIELD: Out of the thousands of films Roger Ebert saw in his career, one of his all-time favorites was Stanley Kubrick's "2001: A Space Odyssey."

And we'll be right back.

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Affirmative Dave I read you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Open the pod bay door.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm sorry, Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What's the problem?

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WHITFIELD: All right. The final four is almost here if you feel it. The talk of the tournament so far has been, all about Louisville's Kevin Ware and last night he made his late night television debut.

Andy Scholes joining us with more in this "Bleacher Report". Andy, he was quite funny, he had that comedic timing.

ANDY SCHOLES, "BLEACHER REPORT": Yes he was Fredricka. After suffering that gruesome injury on Sunday, Ware has -- he's been an inspiration to his teammates and last night proved that he's also not a bad comedian as he presented the top ten list on "The Late Show with David Letterman". Take a look.

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DAVID LETTERMAN, TALK SHOW HOST: The category: thoughts going through Kevin Ware's mind at this moment right here. Here we go. Number nine.

KEVIN WARE, NCAA PLAYER: I hope this doesn't leave a bruise.

LETTERMAN: Number eight.

WARE: Hey, look, my tibia.

LETTERMAN: That's right. Number three.

WARE: They fired Leno?

LETTERMAN: And the number one thought going through Kevin Ware's mind at the moment of the broken leg --

WARE: At least my bracket's not busted.

LETTERMAN: That's right.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHOLES: Well Ware will be on the bench tomorrow night when his Cardinals take on the Shockers. And as you can see the court is ready to go over at the Georgia Dome.

Here's what the schedule looks like for the final four. Louisville and Wichita State tip off at 6:09 Eastern. That game followed by Michigan and Syracuse. The winners from these two games will meet at championship on Monday night. Well, joking or not, Ed Rush is now longer the head of officiating for the Pac-12 conference. Rush resigned yesterday from his post after he was under scrutiny for allegedly targeting Arizona Wildcat head coach Sean Miller.

Rush reportedly told officials that he would give the person who gave Miller a technical foul $5,000 or a trip to Cancun. And sure enough Miller received a technical the very next game. Rush claims this was all it was all a joke, but the officials say he was not joking and his orders were affecting the integrity of the game.

Finally check out this catch in Oakland last night. This ball is ripped into the stands and a fan, a great one-handed catch. The best part about this whole thing is he was holding a beer in his other hand and he didn't spill a drop, Fredricka. You know those beers, they cost about $9 each. So they're pretty valuable.

WHITFIELD: Yes, we cannot have any spillage.

SCHOLES: No.

WHITFIELD: Do they call that like a bear claw catch? It is bear claw?

SCHOLES: Yes, he just stuck one hand out there and didn't even hesitate, and the beer didn't lose any of it in the cup. And then he took a big, old, proud sip right after.

WHITFIELD: Yes. And I like the way he held on to that ball and he was high-fiving with the ball.

SCHOLES: I would have done the same.

WHITFIELD: Me too. All right. Although, I would have dropped the ball. I probably would have ducked, in fact. That's kind of hard.

All right. Thanks so much, Andy. Appreciate it.

All right, the next hour of the CNN NEWSROOM begins right after this.

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