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Bali Plane Crash; Korean Military Buildup; Sandy Hook Victim's Mother Delivers White House Address; NASCAR and Gun Sponsors; Upcoming Senate Debate on Gun Control; Masters Tournament; Reflecting on Jackie Robinson

Aired April 13, 2013 - 08:00   ET


ALISON KOSIK, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, everyone. I'm Alison Kosik.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN ANCHOR: I'm Victor Blackwell. It's 8:00 on the East Coast, 5:00 out West. Good to have with us this morning.

We're starting with breaking news out of Indonesia. A brand new audio just in to CNN, take a look. This is the scene of a plane crash at Bali International Airport.

KOSIK: And here is what we know right now as to what happened here. The Lion Air flight missed the runway and it landed in the water off the western edge of the airport. There were 108 passengers and crew members were on board. Amazingly all of them survived. Around 50 of them though were hospitalized.

Doug Sovern is with KCBS radio in San Francisco. He was at the airport in Bali when the crash happened. Listen to how he described it.


DOUG SOVERN, KCBS RADIO: What we're told here at the airport is that shortly after 3:30 p.m. local time, this incoming Lion Air domestic flight overshot the runway while it was landing, landed in the Indian Ocean just off the coast here and split in half.

Amazingly, they were able to get everyone out of the plane, sort of shades of miracle on the Hudson. People jumping out of the plane, somehow getting rescued from the inside of the aircraft. We saw a lot of fires engines (INAUDIBLE).

We're told there were some minor injuries, but we're told everyone survived. About 100 passengers and crew, everyone got off safely, no one killed at least in the impact of the landing although as we were told here, some people did go to the hospital with injuries. But incredibly, they tell us that everyone has been rescued from this plane alive. It is broken in half off the runway here in the ocean, seems to be sinking now.

This is a Lion Air domestic jet holding about 100 people and it is sitting in the Indian Ocean just off the end of the runway with a big crack sort of the forward third of the fuselage split in half and somehow they were able to get these people off the plane. I'm not really sure how. We were told that people jumped off the plane. I didn't see any kind of rescue chutes or anything like that, but somehow they were going to get the people off. It's not far off the shore so they didn't have to go too far to get on the land.

But it's really extraordinary because when we told what happened, we were told at first that it landed, which did not turn out to be true although we saw a lot of fire. But when we saw the split in the wreckage we just thought everyone here feared the worst and amazingly they seem to have rescued everyone alive although again, we're told that some people did suffer at least minor injuries, maybe more severe than that.


KOSIK: Gosh, you look at these pictures, it really is amazing that everybody survived. It does bring back memories of miracle on the Hudson.

BLACKWELL: Flock of geese the problem in the Hudson crash four years ago.

KOSIK: This one just sliding off the runway.

BLACKWELL: And we'll figure out why it slid off the runway. We do know that there was a crack in the fuselage. You can see it there, the back half of the plane just kind of falling off. We'll bring you more details as we get them.

Let's go to North Korea now and the reaction by the U.S. to missile threats. Missile defense systems are being readied in the region in case North Korea fires a missile. Now the U.S. has been pretty confident that a test firing is likely.

KOSIK: Meantime, Secretary of State John Kerry is in China right now talking to North Korea's number one trade partner. Our foreign affairs reporter Elise Labott is in Washington for us this morning.

Elise, good morning. What is the message that Secretary Kerry at this point is delivering to China?

ELISE LABOTT, CNN FOREIGN AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: Well it's a couple of things, Alison.

First of all, he wants China to give a very tough message to North Korea to stop these belligerent threats, all of these provocative acts like getting its missiles ready and start finding a diplomatic way forward.

Secondly, he really wants China to stop the illicit, illegal flow of arms and weapons that are helping fuel its nuclear program.

KOSIK: Why do they need China on board in order to keep North Korea in check? Is China that powerful to really push North Korea the other way? LABOTT: China is their main economic and political partner, really their one close ally not only in the region, but in the world. So what they say is that China has a real important role to play here. It can have a lot of influence. So what the Chinese felt the United States is that our influence is limited. If you look, China is not really having any effect.

There have been many times over the last few years that China has given a very tough message to North Korea, don't do a nuclear test, don't do a missile test. Stop these threats and North Korea continues. So I think we might overestimate the leverage that the Chinese have.

But certainly there is a lot more they could do. All of a sudden fuel shipments could stop, aid shipments can stop. So there is more China can do but I think that North Korea is on a course of its own. From our understanding is, they're really not listening to the Chinese that much.

BLACKWELL: Elise, it's Victor.

Fareed Zakaria said that this bluster from North Korea in the previous administration of Kim Jong-Il was just extortion. What is it now? What is the motive for launching this test missile, this test fire? Is it financial?

LABOTT: Well, there is a kind of pattern to North Korea's actions that goes something like this, Victor. First you make a lot of threats, you threaten to launch a missile, get the international community very excited. Then there is some kind of missile test, some kind of nuclear test.

And then you sit back and say, the North Koreans sit back and say OK, we won this round. What are you going to give us? There is a feeling that North Korea does want aid, financial enumeration for stopping its acts and getting back to the table, but no one really knows exactly what Kim Jong-Un wants.

What a lot of analysts and officials say is the North Koreans want to be accepted as a nuclear power. They want to have arms talks with the United States. They don't want to talk about giving up their nuclear program, but Secretary Kerry and others have said that is never going to happen.

There are some things that they can give North Korea that for years they've been looking for which is that aid, which is acceptance in the international community, some kind of security guarantees and a peace treaty, but no one knows exactly what Kim Jong-Il is looking for and since he cut off communications with the South Koreans of the United States, it's really hard to ascertain.

BLACKWELL: Elise Labott for us in Washington, thank you so much.

John Kerry is scheduled to speak in Beijing later in the 9:00 a.m. Eastern hour. We'll bring it to you live.

Now the retrial of ousted Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak began as scheduled this morning, but it did not last long because the judge took himself off the case. You'll hear the commotion there in the courtroom. Mubarak watched in a cage in the courtroom. He's in a chair now. He has been in a hospital bed. His trial for the deaths of hundreds of protesters will now be moved to another court.

With the Senate poised to start debate next week on gun control, the mother of a Sandy Hook shooting victim, she makes her case. Francine Wheeler delivered this week's White House address, seen online, also heard on the radio. Her son was killed four months ago along with 19 of his classmates and six educators.

Here is some of what she said.


FRANCINE WHEELER, MOTHER OF SANDY HOOK VICTIM: Our younger son, Ben, age six, was murdered in his first grade classroom on December 14th, exactly four months ago this weekend. I've heard people say that the tidal wave of anguish our country felt on 12/14 has receded, but not for us. It was, it feels as if it happened just yesterday and in the four months since we lost our loved ones, thousands of other Americans have died at the end of a gun. Thousands of other families across the United States are also drowning in our grief.

Please help us do something before our tragedy becomes your tragedy. When I packed for Washington on Monday, it looked like the Senate might not act at all. Then after the president spoke in Hartford and a dozen of us met with senators to share our stories, more than two- thirds of the Senate voted to move forward. But that's only the start.

They haven't yet passed any bills that will help keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people. And a lot of people are fighting to make sure they never do. Now is the time to act. Please, join us.


BLACKWELL: Francine Wheeler, she is the first person other than the president or the vice president to deliver the weekly address since President Obama took office.

KOSIK: Now to Texas, gun control supporters across the country are outraged to see the NRA supporting tonight's NASCAR Sprint Cup. It's called the NRA 500. Some people say it's just too soon after Newtown and interferes with the gun violence debate. One Connecticut senator is asking Fox Sports not to broadcast it.

CNN national correspondent Susan Candiotti is at the Texas motor speedway in Ft. Worth.

Susan, good morning to you. There's a lot of mixed reaction to this at this point, isn't there?


Good morning, Alison. Yes, the race doesn't start until tonight and in a matter of hours, this parking lot will be packed, but questions over the NRA's sponsorship of this event, negotiated by the Texas motor speedway right here and approved by, sanctioned by NASCAR, that's what's grabbing all the headlines right now.

It really comes down to timing, because of the debate going on over gun control legislation in Washington right now and Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut, who has been outspoken in support of the Newtown families, who lost so many loved ones at the Sandy Hook school. He really wishes, he says, that NASCAR would intervene in this and that Fox would decide not to broadcast this event.


SEN. CHRIS MURPHY (D), CONNECTICUT: It gives the impression that Fox and NASCAR endorsing the NRA's position. I know that it's not NASCAR or Fox sports' intent to suggest that they are taking sides in this gun debate, but when they flash their name up on the screen this weekend with the NRA, I think it's just really insensitive to a lot of the families that are on the other side of this debate.


CANDIOTTI: Now Fox has no comment on all of this. A source with knowledge of the event tonight says that Fox is contractually bound to broadcast this event, but here at the Texas Motor Speedway, race officials say this is just about a race, not about politics.

BLACKWELL: Susan, I hope you can talk about something that is going to happen after the race. It's a celebration of sorts.

Tell us about what's going to happen and what the reaction has been in anticipation.

CANDIOTTI: Well, what normally happens at the end, what always happens at the end of this particular race is that the winner is given a couple of revolvers and they fire off blanks. It's tradition. We're in Texas and where a lot of people appreciate owning guns as they do in a lot of other places in the country, but especially here and so this is what people normally do.

That, of course, has also raised some concerns on the parts of gun control advocates and Senator Chris Murphy in particular and some Newtown families who say maybe is this the right time to be doing that this particular year.

KOSIK: Any indication, Susan, that that tradition may be halted at least for this one race?

CANDIOTTI: No, it's scheduled to go on. Again, the race officials say we're not changing anything about what we're doing here. This is all about sports fans who are coming here to attend a NASCAR race and for the most part, they said they have had very few complaints from people who are coming here, very few.

KOSIK: Susan Candiotti, thank you. We've got much more ahead this hour.

BLACKWELL: Here's what's coming up.

KOSIK: It's the fabric of who you are but it may not really be yours. How private companies have patented your DNA and why the Supreme Court is getting involved.

He wasn't even born when Tiger Woods first won the Masters but now he's the veteran's newest threat. Meet the youngest player ever to make the final cut and find out why he's already sparking controversy.

Trying to lose weight? Would it help if you got paid for it? That's what some companies are doing and the biggest losers are banking big bucks.


KOSIK: In Texas, authorities are investigating the murders of two local prosecutors. They've searched the home of this man, Eric Williams. He used to be a justice of the peace in Kaufman County, that's until last year when he was convicted of stealing public equipment. The prosecutors who were killed, Mike McLelland and Mark Hasse, they handled the case. Both were shot this year.

Williams' lawyer says he's innocent and that a gun residue test his client took hours after McLelland and his wife Cynthia were killed came back negative.

Police are trying to figure out why this man allegedly opened fire Friday at his community college in a shopping mall not far from Virginia Tech. Two women were hurt before 18-year-old Neil Alan McGinnis was arrested.

An online message was posted under that name just minutes before the shooting. It urges readers to tune in to the local police scanner and adds quote, I'm a bit nervous because I've never really handled a shotgun. The poster's identity hasn't been confirmed.

BLACKWELL: The debate on gun control will hit a new level in Washington next week. The Senate is going to start debate over new legislation. At the center of this discussion, background checks and mental health.

CNN's Athena Jones has more.


ATHENA JONES, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): James Holmes in Colorado, Jared Loughner in Arizona, (INAUDIBLE) at Virginia Teach, all with mental health problems and all able to buy guns to kill. Would proposed new background checks stop others like them?

SEN. PAT TOOMEY (R) PENNSYLVANIA: The common ground rests on a simple proposition and that is that criminals and the dangerously mentally ill shouldn't have guns. JONES: But it's not simple as all. Who is considered dangerously mentally ill? Under Federal law, if someone found by a judge to be quote, a mental defective or someone committed to any mental institution. But state standards vary widely and their mental health records often don't make it into the database used to make Federal background checks. Among the concerns, privacy protection. The Senate bill makes it clear that sharing these records won't violate Federal law.

JOSHUA HORWITZ, COALITION TO STOP GUN VIOLENCE: What we need to do is we need to get all the records from the states into the Federal system. Today over 30 states barely report any records.

JONES: Take Dennis Maynard suspected of killing a West Virginia sheriff 10 months after being released from a mental hospital. He could buy a gun because the state was slow in sending his record. A judge deemed Cho, the Virginia Tech shooter, mentally ill but that didn't stop him from buying a gun because those records weren't in the system. Holmes and Loughner fell through the cracks too because no court had deemed them dangerous and ordered them committed. Advocates worry this debate is stigmatizing the mentally ill.

RON HONBERG, NATIONAL ALLIANCE OF MENTAL ILLNESS: Our concern is that the way this discussion has taken place, mental illness is being equated with violence and that has a very, very negative impact on people. It's not only feeds right into negative stereotypes about people, but it could even serve as a deterrent to people being willing to seek treatment.

JONES: Athena Jones, CNN, Washington.


KOSIK: I want to ask you this. What did you do when you were 14 years old? I'll take a gander and say probably not what this teenager is doing. He's rewriting the history books by playing golf on an April Saturday at Augusta national.


BLACKWELL: Kobe Bryant out with a serious injury, Tiger Woods in contention and a 14-year-old is the youngest to make the cut at the Masters. Joe Carter is here with the bleacher report.

Joe, some big headlines coming out of Augusta and LA.

JOE CARTER, BLEACHER REPORT: Yes, good story this morning. Jason Day, the Australian, he is in the lead at the Masters, but of course all the talk about what happened to Tiger Woods on hole 15 yesterday. He was tied for the lead at this point, sharp as ever, perhaps too sharp, because as you'll see in the video, the ball hits the flagpole, then ricochets back into the water. Had he missed that flagpole, the ball would have probably stuck in the green feet from the hole, setting him up for birdying the outright lead.

But instead he loses a stroke and has to hit the shot again. He sticks the shot. He would bogey the hole, but drops him into second place. That's where he would start today. He's not at the top of the leader board but he is playing well enough to be there on Sunday.

Now there is some dispute about where he dropped that ball. Perhaps he could be disqualified. There's some saying that. We'll get into it with Rachel Nichols who is in Augusta at the top of the hour.

The best story going into Masters will continue into the weekend, Tianlang Guan, 14 years old, the youngest player ever to make the cut at a major championship, but it almost didn't happen. He was singled out for playing too slow, then penalized one shot because of it. He saved par on 18 and he made the cut by the skin of his teeth.

Here is your leaderboard heading into today, Jason Day, the Australian, six under, Mark Leishman and Freddy Couples, a fan favorite, both tied at five under and there's Tiger on the front porch and Tianlang Guan making the cut, unbelievable.

So in the NBA, a sad game for Lakers fans. If they somehow manage to make the playoffs, they will not be with their star player. Kobe Bryant is out indefinitely. Lakers say he tore, it's probable that he tore an Achilles. He went down in the fourth quarter of last night's game against the Warriors. They'll have an MRI today to confirm, but they're pretty sure the Achilles is torn.

That injury, guys, typically takes about six to eight months to rehab. He's 34 years old right now. He'll be 35 at the start of next season. If the rehab takes as long as they suspect, he could be out the first few weeks, even months of the season so who knows what will happen to Kobe Bryant.

Sad way to see it, awesome career. Hopefully, he can make it back. That's a tough one, Victor.

BLACKWELL: Hopefully the fans at least get to say good bye at the end.


KOSIK: It took years for his life to be made into a movie. But now a new generation of fans will learn how Jackie Robinson broke baseball's color barrier on April 15, 1947. "42," that's the name of the movie, a movie about Robinson's life on and off the field is now in theaters and it helps bring home a point on and off the field.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He never gave up and that's one thing we definitely teach the kids is to always do their best, give it 100 percent every time they get on the field and when we mentioned the Dodgers, they lit up and said Jackie Robinson.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He fought hard for the game and not only for the game for baseball, but for equal rights as us as a people.


KOSIK: Jackie Robinson died in 1972 at the age of 53.

BLACKWELL: An Indonesian plane overshoots the runway and plunges into the water. We are following this breaking story. This is the video just in to CNN. We'll bring you the latest next.

Plus should companies be allowed to patent your genes? The Supreme Court is about to weigh in. We'll explain the legal ramifications coming up.


KOSIK: Bottom of the hour, now welcome back. I'm Alison Kosik.

BLACKWELL: I'm Victor Blackwell. Thanks for starting your morning with us. Here are five stories we're watching this morning.

Number one, the breaking news out of Bali. That's where a plane missed the runway, hit the water, 108 passengers and crew on board. It's a Lion Air flight from west Java to Bali. Good news, everyone survived, but 50 people were sent to hospitals after they escaped this plane. We'll have much more on this as we get new details coming in.

KOSIK: Number two, Secretary of State John Kerry is in China this morning. He's talking with his Chinese counterparts about North Korea and what China can do to stop the threat. We're expecting Kerry to talk about his meeting in Beijing shortly. We're going to bring you that when it happens.

BLACKWELL: Three, we go to New York, public school officials there are apologizing for a writing assignment that asks students to prove their loyalty to the Nazis. Three English classes at Albany High School were assigned to argue that Jews are, quote, "evil," and at the root of the German government's problems. This is a writing assignment for students.

Officials are considering how to punish the teacher, including possible termination.

KOSIK: Number four, three teenage boys in California were pulled out of class, arrested and are now facing sexual battery charges. They're accused of raping 15-year-old Audrie Potts, photographing it and sharing the photos in September.

She committed suicide after learning the photos were posted online. Potts wrote on Facebook that her life was ruined. Some people are outraged it took so long for the boys to be arrested. CNN is not identifying the accused because they're minors and have not formally -- have not been formally charged.

BLACKWELL: Fifth and finally, comic legend Jonathan Winters died on Thursday at his home in California. Winters may have been best known for his roles in TV's "Mork and Mindy" and the movie "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World."

But one of his greatest achievements was as the father of improvised comedy. Jim Carrey tweeted that Winters, quote, "did God's work." Jonathan Winters was 87.

KOSIK: Now listen to this.


KOSIK: That was a clip from the 1997 sci-fi movie "Gattaca," about a future world where children are selected through genetic manipulation to ensure only the best traits are handed down from generation to generation.

DNA becomes the passport to better careers and lifestyles, But could a person's genetics be exploited for commercial gain in real life?

On Monday the Supreme Court is going to be hearing arguments to determine if companies can patent human genes. And the decision could have a major impact on cancer research here in the U.S.

Of the nearly 28,000 genes in the human genome more than a third are patented by universities and pharmaceutical companies, including genes known as BRCA-1 and BRCA-2, that are link to increased risk of breast and ovarian cancer.

The case is between Myriad Genetics Incorporated, which has patents on these two genes, and the American Civil Liberties Union, who argues gene patents are unconstitutional and hinders research and First Amendment rights.

Let's talk about this. Let's bring in CNN legal contributor Paul Callan.

Good morning, Paul.


KOSIK: A New York district court agreed with the ACLU, but it was later overturned twice by a federal appeals court.

What happens if the Supreme Court upholds the ruling and says Myriad Genetics can patent these genes?

CALLAN: This is a fascinating case and a fascinating field and I'll tell you why. Think Alexander Graham Bell and the telephone; think Thomas Edison and the light bulb -- American inventors. The reason their inventions were protected under U.S. law -- under, in fact, the United States Constitution -- is because of patent law.

You invent something, you could profit from the invention at least for about 20 years and then it falls into the public domain.

Now, in the area of genes and medical devices, a lot of companies are going in, studying parts of the human body and then designing tests. And that's exactly what Myriad did in this case.

They looked at a long stretch of human DNA, about 6 feet in length. They isolated a small segment of it the size of a pinhead and they're now -- and that, by the way, segment suggests that's the area where you can figure out if a woman is going to get breast cancer or ovarian cancer.

And they're saying they want to be able to patent the ability to kind of isolate, snip that gene for testing purposes. They spent $500 million inventing the process, and now they want to make money on it. And that's what the Supreme Court is looking at.

The reason I say it's fascinating is because the people who support Myriad say if the Supreme Court says you can't patent this, these companies aren't going to spend money on medical research and we won't have these great advances in medical technology.

Other people say, like the American Medical Association, hey, you can't patent the human body. It's just wrong.

So that's sort of what the Supreme Court is looking at at this point, Alison.

KOSIK: OK. Can the Supreme Court really consider sort of that economic portion of this or the research portion of this?

Can they get into that as part of their decision-making?

CALLAN: It's certainly something that they look at, but ultimately they're looking at the way patent law is written. And there's always been a rule that you cannot patent a sort of naturally occurring physical fact.

So for instance, Thomas Edison might be able to patent the light bulb, but -- the invention of how to make the light bulb work but he couldn't patent electricity.

So using that same concept, when you look at these genes, people who are opposing Myriad say hey, this is a natural occurring process in the human body, when this mutation occurs that causes breast cancer. You can't have a private company patent that portion of the human body.

So the Supreme Court looks at the wording of the law, but they're also going to look at the economic impact on this. For instance, we already allow patenting of seeds when there's a gene that is looked at with respect to plant life and other things. They've already said companies can patent resistant seeds and it's already taking place.

So it's going to have a big, big impact on commercial development of these new ideas in the United States.

KOSIK: So how soon are we going to have a decision? And I want to hear your prediction on how you think the court is going to rule on this?

CALLAN: We're going to have a decision -- we might have it as soon as June. I think that the court in the end will throw out a mixed decision.

I think that they're going to try to uphold portions of the Myriad patent, and maybe throw out some other aspects of it; in other words, they could patent maybe a smaller portion of what they seek to patent, because you have to encourage invention in the United States and it's very important to medical science.

I mean, believe it or not, even Michael Jackson has a patent or had a patent on "smooth criminal anti-gravity" shoes, you know, how they lean when they do the dances on stage? Patented by Michael Jackson. So we certainly wouldn't want to lose that for American society now, would we, Alison?

KOSIK: No, we wouldn't Paul Callan.


KOSIK: Thanks so much for your insight.

CALLAN: Nice being with you.

KOSIK: Same here.

BLACKWELL: There was a time when I thought I really could like lean in like that.

KOSIK: Because you can.

BLACKWELL: You can't.

KOSIK: Sure you can.


BLACKWELL: I just hit my forehead on the ground many, many times.

KOSIK: (Inaudible).

BLACKWELL: Hey, "Crime in 60", let's talk about this.

A hermit is out of hiding, a clerk brings a baseball bat to a gunfight, here's "Crime in 60" seconds.


BLACKWELL (voice-over): In Suwanee, Georgia, four firefighters were held hostage by a man by a gun when they responded to a fake emergency call. Police say Lauren Brown was having financial problems and demanded help. He was killed in a shootout with law enforcement. The firefighters had only minor injuries.

A woman in Chicago is accused of recruiting her grandson to kill his grandfather while he was waiting for a bus. Janet Strickland and her grandson, William, have been charged with first-degree murder.

A man who lived as a hermit in the woods of Maine for 27 years and is accused of hundreds of burglaries has been caught. As state game warden says he caught Christopher Knight as he was burglarizing a camp for disabled people.

Two men tried to rob a Chicago sports store at gunpoint only to be attacked by the store clerk wielding a bat. The clerk, Luis Quizhpe, keeps swinging after being shot in his leg while his family members fight back with a chair and a fire extinguisher. Police have caught one of the suspects.

And that's your week of "Crime in 60" seconds.


BLACKWELL: Hey, do you remember former New York Congressman Anthony Weiner's fall from grace over those controversial photos he tweeted? Well, if you haven't heard, he's trying to make a comeback. We'll talk about that next.




BLACKWELL: A 13-year-old boy in Pennsylvania, he is in big trouble for leading police on a high-speed chase in a stolen SUV. He's 13.

Look at this vehicle. Officers chased him when they saw him going down the road the wrong way.

Now the chase ended when the SUV slammed into a concrete barrier, flipped on top of a bridge railing -- and there it is between these two poles. Now the boy had only minor injuries but police say this boy, 13, was on house arrest and had an electronic monitor on him at the time.

Democrat Anthony Weiner was disgraced and embarrassed when he resigned from Congress, but this week we found out he may be considering a run for mayor of New York. Here's CNN's Jason Carroll.


JASON CARROLL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The cameras once again following former U.S. Congressman from New York Anthony Weiner.

ANTHONY WEINER, FORMER U.S. CONGRESSMAN FROM N.Y.: No, I don't have anything more to add than what you read in "The New York Times" story, but I'll be glad to sit down with each of you individually sometime next week.

CARROLL (voice-over): This after "The New York Times" magazine released its profile on him and his wife.

In it, Weiner admits he may want to run for New York City mayor, saying, "I want to ask people to give me a second chance. I do want to have that conversation with people whom I let down."

This image is what caused Weiner, who at one time many Democrats considered a rising star, to resign in disgrace. And it wasn't just the lewd tweet he sent to a 17-year-old girl, but also his explanation of it.

WEINER: Someone was pranking me and punking me.

CARROLL (voice-over): A lie Weiner repeated.

WEINER: This is a Twitter hoax, a prank that was done.

CARROLL (voice-over): When we caught up with Weiner mid-scandal he was still trying to save his political career.

CARROLL: Can you tell us about the communications or any communications that you've had between yourself and, say, the Clintons or anyone else who has been advising you?

WEINER: No, I mean, I've had -- I've had conversations with people but I'm not -- you know, look, I've made pretty serious mistakes and I need to redeem myself and I'm working hard to try to get back to normal and try to serve the people in my district the best I can.

CARROLL (voice-over): Calls for his resignation kept coming. Soon Weiner had no choice.

WEINER: So today I'm announcing my resignation from Congress.

CARROLL (voice-over): In the nearly two years since then, Weiner disappeared from the political spotlight, until now.

"The Times" says Weiner spent more than $100,000 on polling and research to gauge voters' feelings about a mayoral bid, Weiner telling "The Times" he is a different man, saying, "If I ever go back to doing politics again, I don't think I'll be as good at it. Either that or I'll be this crazy new kind of politician."

Could a comeback work? Former Democratic President Bill Clinton and recently former Republican South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford, both examples of coming back from sex scandals.

HANK SHEINKOPF, POLITICAL ANALYST: The problem here is what people will visualize in a campaign poster. Normally they'd (inaudible) to see a head shot, but not a shot of someone's crotch. And what they're going to be seeing when they see Anthony Weiner's face is those Twitter photos.

CARROLL (voice-over): An informal poll suggests many would forgive --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: (Inaudible) to forgive then he would be forgiven.

CARROLL (voice-over): -- but not forget.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He would not be appropriate to run at this moment.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I would never vote for him for mayor.

CARROLL (voice-over): Weiner has until July to decide -- Jason Carroll, CNN, New York.

(END VIDEOTAPE) BLACKWELL: Hey, you know those guys over at "The Biggest Loser," they're on to something. Competition is great motivation for losing weight. We'll introduce one company that's hoping $10,000 is enough to help you drop some pounds.



KOSIK: Temperatures are warming up across the country. And you know what that means. Bathing suits are coming.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I am on the third day of my cleanse diet. All I have to do is drink maple syrup, lemon juice, cayenne pepper and water for all three meals. I just bought three bikinis online, size 2, so I'm going to look amazing.



BLACKWELL: Remember the juice diet and cabbage diet and cookie diets and all that? They were popular a few years back, did not work for us; didn't work for Kelly from "The Office" either.

KOSIK: But one thing that does work is good ole' healthy competition. And one company is helping you take on your co-workers for a chance at not only cash and prizes but you also get to lose weight in trying to lose that weight.

BLACKWELL: Yes, and when we say cash, we mean a lot of cash -- $10,000 for a team winner in some contests. The group is called HealthyWage. We have got the co-founders. David Roddenberry and Jim Fleming join us now.

Guys, thank you for joining us. We have got Brian Bourgalt next to me, a participant in a program. We're going to talk with all three guys.

Let's start in New York. Tell us how this works.

JIM FLEMING, HEALTHYWAGE CO-FOUNDER: Well a HealthyWage makes weight loss more effective by making it fun, so it gives you a chance to win up to $10,000 by participating in our challenges. And all you have to do is lose weight.

KOSIK: Easy enough, right? For some to say.

BLACKWELL: Hey, Brian, you are in a program and you said it's like a 10 percent program. Explain what this is.

BRIAN BOURGALT, HEALTHYWAGE PARTICIPANT: So what I'm doing is up front I paid $150, weigh in and then what I'm going to do is in 10 percent -- within six months if I lose 10 percent I actually double my money and give me $300 for losing that weight. BLACKWELL: Yes.

KOSIK: Do you really feel that's sort of the heat of the competition from your co-workers, is that really a driver for to you lose weight?

BOURGALT: It is. I mean, the money, too, I mean, just thinking about it, I -- the last thing I want to do is lose $150. So if I can go into a situation, $300, winning $300 is great but to not lose $150, that's even better.

BLACKWELL: Hey, Jim, tell me, is it the competition you found or the money that really is the prime motivator here for the weight loss?

FLEMING: Well, they're two completely separate tools and they're both super effective. So when you're on a team and you know that other people's prize hangs in what you're doing, that's a powerful motivator because the other people on your team aren't going to be too happy with you if you let them down.

So that's one tool. And then a completely separate tool is your own desire to, as Brian was saying, avoid losing the money that you've invested. And also you want to try to win money. So you have all sorts of things pushing you along, which is one of the things that makes it so effective and it's also one of the things that makes it so much fun.

KOSIK: David or Jim, you know, obesity is a big issue in this country.

What kind of effect does it have, let's say, on the workplace?

You know, are we really less productive when we're overweight?


You know, I think that what we hear is from people who have lost the weight after succeeding and winning money at HealthyWage and they just report that, A, they've gone off their medications; B, they're more productive, they're more active, they're more successful both personally and professionally, the self-confidence that you get when you make a positive life change.

And, you know, at HealthyWage, we're all about putting a little money in your pocket when you -- when you make that change.

BLACKWELL: Well, who is putting that money up? Is it the company or is it your company?

RODDENBERRY: Well, we have a mix of revenue sources. So employers pay to us help their employees get healthy; participants like Brian put in $150 because they're more motivated by not losing the $150 that they've invested.

And then we're also supported by sponsors, health insurance companies, health systems that are interested in creative solutions to obesity. And this seems to be a very promising avenue to reverse our nation's obesity epidemic. FLEMING: It's important to be clear, though, that everyone's eligible to participate, not just people who work at companies that are doing HealthyWage. But anyone watching can go to and try to win up to $10,000 for losing weight. So we've opened it up to the whole country.

KOSIK: Do you have any tips to get everybody started on losing weight?

RODDENBERRY: Well, I think it's about figuring out the program that's going to work best for you. So we have a BMI challenge, which is one year long for folks who are obese and looking to make that really significant life change, to get to a healthy weight.

And then we have a six-month challenge, like Brian's doing, which is a lot more manageable. It's 10 percent of your weight, which is basically a pound a week. And you double your money if you're successful. So that, you know, if you're looking at sort of a temporary change that might be a fit.

And then we also have a team challenge where you compete in teams for a $10,000 grand prize. And if you have family members or co-workers, just a group that you think that accountability of losing weight would be a group would be a fit, we'd encourage to you sign up for that one.

BLACKWELL: So let's talk about success. Is it working for you?

BOURGALT: It is. I'm a little over two months in; I've already lost 16 pounds.

BLACKWELL: OK. And that puts you at what percentage? Because you've got to get to (inaudible).

BOURGALT: I need to lose a total of 25, so a little over seven.

BLACKWELL: How much more time do you have?

BOURGALT: About four more months.


KOSIK: Think you can do it?

BOURGALT: I think so.

BLACKWELL: (Inaudible), last question coming out to New York, because there are studies that have come out in the "Journal of American Medicine" that, yes, these programs work to get people to lose the weight.

But so many, if not the lion's share of the participants, gain the weight back.

So what then is the benefit for the individuals who participate, and the companies who thought they were going to save money by reducing the health care cost? RODDENBERRY: Well, the problem of weight loss and weight maintenance is a different problem and the type of financial incentive solution that works for weight loss is different for weight maintenance.

So in a weight loss paradigm, having a goal like 10 percent weight loss over six months, it's very -- it helps you lock in and be successful; whereas in a maintenance type of phase, you don't have a goal. Your goal is like every day. You just want to eat healthy and be successful at keeping your weight off.

So we piloted maintenance type of schemes that have been very successful, you know, with different types of financial incentive programs; instead of like a bet, it's a different type of program.

So we see promise with financial incentives, both on the weight loss side and on the weight maintenance side.

BLACKWELL: Well, we know that maintenance is the hardest part.

KOSIK: It is, keeping it up.

BLACKWELL: David Roddenberry, Jim Fleming in New York, thank you so much.

Brian Bourgalt, good luck with the competition.

KOSIK: And congratulations on what you've lost so far.


Well, he first brought us "Gangnam Style" and now PSY is out with a new single.

KOSIK: We're going to play some of the song for you. You want to hear it.



BLACKWELL: In Florida, a family on a boat tour gets a lesson in python wrestling and it is caught on tape.


KOSIK: Take that, take that, tour guide Tommy Owen told our affiliate WBBH his instincts kicked in when he saw this 10-foot python slithering through the Everglades. He ambushed it -- I don't know how some of them do this -- and he held it long enough for his partner to make the kill. Burmese pythons are an invasive species in South Florida.

BLACKWELL: Good for him. But I can't imagine that your instinct says, I got to fight this python.

KOSIK: I guess if you're that guy, you are. BLACKWELL: Not mine.

KOSIK: This was inevitable: PSY is looking for another big hit with his "Gangnam Style" sequel. "Gentleman" is his new song.

BLACKWELL: Yes, Korean pop star performed his new single and new moves for the first time during a live concert. Look at this. Bit of a spectacle, that's -- oh, are those his pants lighting up? OK, there's that.


BLACKWELL: This is at Seoul's World Cup stadium.

What do you think?