CNN CNN


 

Return to Transcripts main page

THE SITUATION ROOM

Tense Questions for Trayvon Martin's Friend; Boston Bombing Suspect Indicted on 30 Counts; A Source Says Hernandez Probed in Double Murder; Senate Passes Sweeping Immigration Bill

Aired June 27, 2013 - 17:00   ET

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


WOLF BLITZER, HOST: Happening now, the Boston bombing suspect, Dzokhar Tsarnaev, indicted, now facing 30 counts. More than half carry the death penalty.

Hours of combative, terse and sometimes bizarre testimony -- another gripping day in the trial of the man charged with murdering Trayvon Martin.

And a make or break vote on immigration -- which way did the Senate go?

I'm Wolf Blitzer.

You're in THE SITUATION ROOM.

We begin with what's been another fascinating day in the George Zimmerman murder trial. On the stand today for the second day in a row, as a so-called star witness for the prosecution, Rachel Jeantel, the last person believed to talk to Trayvon Martin before his deadly confrontation. Amid hours of cross-examination from the defense, it was almost impossible to turn away from her animated expressions, combative answers and often irritated demeanor.

Now the big question is this -- did she help or hurt the state's case?

CNN's Martin Savidge has been inside the courtroom all day.

He's joining us right now with the very latest.

So what happened -- Martin.

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Wolf, Rachel Jeantel is the kind of witness that journalists love, but also the kind of witness that can be both a nightmare for the prosecution and the defense. And, in fact, she probably lived up to that reputation over these past two days.

However, that said, she did seem to be different today on the stand. Her responses, depending on how you weigh the "Yes, sir," seemed to have a bit more respect and decorum than when we saw her yesterday.

But she also seemed more firm in her answers whenever she was challenged. And remember, she is key as a witness because she is maintaining that, of course, she was on the phone with Trayvon Martin right up to the moment that the confrontation occurred between George Zimmerman and the teen. She says that she heard Trayvon say to her, "I'm being followed," then shortly thereafter, she heard Trayvon say something like, "What are you following me for?"

And then she says George Zimmerman said, "What are you doing around here?"

Then she heard a bump. She heard the wet grass, which everyone now has been explained, apparently by her, to say it was a scuffle of some sort. And then she heard Trayvon saying, "Get off, get off."

That is all very damaging to the defense, which is why the defense went after her again today.

Take a listen.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So he told you that he could see the man again, the man was behind him, correct?

RACHEL JEANTEL, TRAYVON MARTIN'S FRIEND : Yes. Close.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sure.

JEANTEL: Yes, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And if he were hiding somewhere and the man walked close to him, they would be close together, correct?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Objection. Argumentative and (INAUDIBLE).

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sustained.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In any event, your sense of it was that they got close together at that point?

JEANTEL: He got close to Trayvon, yes, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And you don't know whether the man was approaching Trayvon at that point and getting closer or whether Trayvon was approaching the man and getting closer.

JEANTEL: Trayvon would have told me he'll call me back, sir, if he was going to approach him, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So you're assuming that Trayvon didn't approach the man because he would have told you if he was going to confront the guy, he would call you back when it was over?

JEANTEL: Yes, sir.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SAVIDGE: That's one of those exchanges, Wolf, where you could feel the tension in the courtroom. Love her or hate her, the real question is, what did the jury think?

I looked at their faces. Many paid very close attention. Some often were writing notes. We just don't know at this particular point -- Wolf.

BLITZER: This trial continues.

Martin Savidge covering it for -- covering it for us.

Thanks very much.

Let's dig a little bit deeper right now with our senior legal analyst, Jeffrey Toobin, and our legal analyst, Sunny Hostin, in Sanford, Florida -- Sunny, first to you.

You were inside that courtroom.

What's the bottom line?

How did -- how do you think it played out?

SUNNY HOSTIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You know, I was in the courtroom and watching the testimony and watching the jurors really closely because it is their opinions that matter, right?

I think that they were very engaged. As Martin said, a lot of them were taking notes. They were looking at her, not with a look of confusion, as if they didn't understand what she was saying, but engaged and listening.

I think that she actually did pretty well, considering the tension that was there and considering the fact that she's a young girl on the stand for the first time, being cross-examined by a very skilled attorney. She maintained the same thing throughout.

She says George Zimmerman was following Trayvon Martin very closely, that Trayvon said, "What are you -- why are you following me?," and that really described George Zimmerman as the initial aggressor, as the pursuer.

That is crucial, crucial to the state's case, because, after all, George Zimmerman is claiming self-defense. If he is found to have been the first aggressor, if the jury believes Rachel, then I think self-defense is almost off the table here.

BLITZER: You know, Jeffrey, the defense, they have a tough job walking -- that very, very thin line. They want to undermine her credibility. But if they go too far, that could undermine their defense of George Zimmerman.

How do you think they did in that cross-examination.

JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I think they did better today. You know, I think it's useful to think of Rachel's testimony in two parts. The first part is about her view that Trayvon was saying, "He was following me," that "George Zimmerman was following me." I think her testimony there is very strong and very helpful for the prosecution.

But when you get to the actual confrontation, I think her story gets a lot more wobbly. The idea that she -- that he -- she could hear Trayvon Martin say, "Get off, get off," think about that. You know, he's holding a phone. It's such a chaotic situation. And she has told different versions of that -- of that part of the story several times.

So I think she is definitely a helpful witness for the prosecution, but she doesn't give the prosecution everything they want. And the key -- the most important part, the actual confrontation, I'm not sure she helps that much at all.

BLITZER: How much of this trial, Sunny, rests on this one young woman?

HOSTIN: She certainly is the star witness, in my view, because, again, it's about who started this fight, who started this confrontation. I don't think there's any question in anyone's mind that there was a confrontation.

But what's most important is how did it begin?

If you listen to George Zimmerman, he says that Trayvon Martin came out of nowhere and sucker punched her -- him. If the jury believes that version of events, if the jury hears that version of events, then it's over for the prosecution.

But if they hear that version and also hear what -- and have heard what Rachel has said and they believe her, then the prosecution is well on its way to a conviction in this case.

BLITZER: Sunny Hostin, thanks very much.

Jeffrey, don't go away. I've got some other questions on another case that we're watching, as well.

Jeffrey Toobin is standing by.

Let's go to the devastating Boston Marathon bombings and the subsequent manhunt that left four people dead and injured, more than 250. A federal grand jury today returning a 30 count indictment against the surviving suspect in the attacks, Dzokhar Tsarnaev, involving, among other things, his alleged role in using weapons of mass destruction.

Our national correspondent, Deborah Feyerick, is in Boston.

She's combing through the details.

She's joining us now with what happened.

What's the latest -- Deb? DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN CORRESPONDENT:

Well, Wolf, we can tell you that of those 30 counts, 17 of them carry a penalty of life in prison, or even the death penalty. That's something that would be have be decided by Attorney General Eric Holder.

The U.S. attorney who announced the indictment today did not discuss any sort of motive of the Tsarnaev brothers. However, in the indictment itself, it shows Dzokhar Tsarnaev's note, the one he allegedly left in the boat where he was hiding over a 24 hour period. And it says, quote, "The U.S. government is killing our innocent civilians. I can't stand to see such evil go unpunished."

He talks about the fact he doesn't like killing innocent people, but there are some situations that justify it. And then he says, "Stop killing our innocent people and we will stop."

Now, the indictment, Wolf, also sheds light on a number of things that happened in preparation leading up to the attack on the Boston Marathon April 15th. For example, the brothers purchased -- allegedly purchased 48 mortars, about eight pounds of explosives.

Also, the electronic components that were used in the pressure cookers, Wolf, those actually came from a store online. They said they bought it and had it shipped. And in addition, they also bought a prepaid cell phone.

So a lot of interesting details coming out of this indictment.

Dzokhar Tsarnaev is supposed to be here in this court on July 10th -- Wolf.

BLITZER: And it also points out that he was downloading a lot of information from jihadist Web sites, including from "Inspire" magazine. So there's a lot more detail on that, as well.

All right, Deb, thanks very much.

Let's bring back Jeffrey Toobin for some analysis.

What -- when you go through -- I read this entire indictment. I'm sure you've read it, as well.

What's your bottom line?

TOOBIN: Well, it really expands our knowledge of what happened, at least the government's version of it. It's so richly detailed. It reads like a thriller.

And the theme of it all, I thought, was to preempt a likely defense in this case.

The likely defense, it seems to me, is that this whole thing was the older brother's idea, that he was the mastermind and the younger brother, who was, of course, the only surviving brother, just went along.

What the indictment does is it focuses on focused on Dzokhar's own activities. As you point out, downloading the jihadist material from the Web sites, the incredible things he was writing in the -- on the boat right before he was captured, and, of course, his actions, calling his brother right before the brother sets off the two bombs.

It is interesting, though, that it says the older brother is the one who actually pushed the button and set off both bombs.

BLITZER: Yes. And I'm sure there's going to be a lot more on this. The formal appearance in court I think scheduled for July 10th.

All right, Jeffrey, thanks very much.

Up next, he's facing one murder charge.

Could there be more, though?

Details of an another investigation involving the former NFL player, Aaron Hernandez.

Plus, a landmark vote in the United States Senate on comprehensive immigration reform. But the bill's biggest challenge still lies ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BLITZER: Ex-NFL player, Aaron Hernandez, already charged with one murder, is now being investigated in connection with a double murder last year in Boston. That according to a law enforcement source close to the investigation.

CNN national correspondent, Susan Candiotti, is working the story for us.

What are you finding out -- Susan?

SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Wolf.

Well, yes, it's more potential trouble for the former New England Patriot tight end, that star player.

We have learned that authorities are now looking at an unsolved double murder in Boston that happened last summer. And they have now impounded, according to our source, Boston P.D. has seized a silver SUV with Rhode Island plates that they have been looking for since last year.

Now, they also believe that Aaron Hernandez was renting that SUV at the time.

Wolf, it's unclear whether there is any linkage between that unsolved double murder and the current murder investigation going on right now.

But that wasn't the only trouble facing Aaron Hernandez this day. And, by the way, I asked his lawyer whether they had any comment on the double murder possible link and they said they had nothing to say about it. But in court today, again, his lawyers tried to convince a judge to grant him bail. They failed, but the arguments they again were using is that, look, he has no prior record. He owns a home. He has a fiancee and an 8-month-old child.

And the prosecutors in rebuttal argued again going into great detail about the investigation and the execution-style slaying of victim, Odin Lloyd, and pointed out even more information about a new search we didn't know about in the area where they seized additional ammunition and even accused Hernandez of providing a vehicle for some confederates as they called it to get out of town after the murder had occurred.

Now, the judge again would hear none of it, but here's how the arguments were summed up.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JAMES SULTAN, HERNANDEZ DEFENSE ATTORNEY: He should be treated like any other defendant. If he's not a risk of flight, if the equities are in his favor, because he has no prior record, he has a stable family situation, he's a member of the community, he has a solid employment record.

WILLIAM MCCAULEY, ASSISTANT DISTRICT ATTORNEY: There's every reason to think that, one, he will be convicted of the offense, that the case against him is strong, that he would then be looking at a sense of light without any chance of parole. Two, that he would flee the commonwealth and potentially flee the country. He has a means to do that and the motivation to do it.

JUDGE RENEE DUPUIS, MASSACHUSETTS SUPERIOR COURT: Despite the fact that he has a fiancee and a baby and is a home owner, he also has a means to (INAUDIBLE) in a bracelet.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

CANDIOTTI: The judge said that she was convinced that the prosecution seemed to have some considerable and very strong evidence at this time. Also, the defense attorney said, well, they're disappointed, but they'll try to figure out what to do next. And in the meantime, Hernandez today lost a second major endorsement, one that he had from Puma. So, the investigation goes on, Wolf.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: And, he stays in jail. No bail for him. If he's convicted, he's going to be in jail presumably for the rest of his life. No more free days for Aaron Hernandez.

CANDIOTTI: That's true.

BLITZER: We'll watch the story together with you. Thanks very much.

When we come back, an historic day for immigration reform. Just ahead, we're going live to Capitol Hill. An important vote has just occurred.

Plus, President Obama says he's not going to scramble jets to get the NSA leaker, Edward Snowden. So, how far is he willing to go to track him down? We'll talk about that. That's coming up. Stay with us. You're in the SITUATION ROOM.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BLITZER: A sweeping plan to overhaul U.S. immigration law, including a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants and billions of dollars for increased border security. The Senate passed the bipartisan bill just about an hour or so ago with Vice President Joe Biden presiding.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JOE BIDEN, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Before the chair announces the vote, expressions of approval or disapproval are not permitted in the Senate. The yeas on this bill are 68. The nays are 32. The bill as amended is passed.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BLITZER: Let's bring in our chief Congressional correspondent, Dana Bash. How big of a moment in the effort to get comprehensive immigration reform was this?

DANA BASH, CNN CHIEF CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: A big moment, a huge moment. Look, this is the moment that proponents of immigration reform, comprehensive reform have been working for for seven years since the last time the Senate was able to pass this. You heard the vice president tell everybody, not to say anything after the vote.

That's because the galleries were absolutely packed with people staffers and members of the public because of the importance and the moment that this was. So much that the Senate majority leader, Harry Reid, asked all senators to vote from their desks, which is something that they do on a rare occasion to really have the optics of something that is memorable.

Usually, you see senators milling around when they're voting. But, look, in the end, 14 Senate Republicans voted with all Senate Democrats. And this is really a big deal when you look at the way that most conservatives, many of them in their base feel about the whole idea of giving a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants.

They think it's amnesty. So, the idea that they got that so many Republicans, they are saying, should give this piece of legislation momentum going into the House. You know, Lindsay Graham said it -- sort of -- really sort of capped it off and explained why the Senate voted for this after this issue being kind of dead for a while and that is because the Republican Party lost so many Latino voters in the last election that their base, White men basically, has been shrinking in the electorate.

And he said that he hopes that this puts an end to the party of self- deportation, an illusion to what Mitt Romney said in the last election. He hopes that term will be in the party's rearview mirror now -- Wolf.

BLITZER: The president, even though while he's in Africa right now, issued a statement after the vote, among other things saying, "The bipartisan bill that passed today was a compromise. By definition, nobody got everything they wanted, not Democrats, not Republicans, not me, but the Senate bill is consistent with the key principles for common sense reform that I and many others have repeatedly laid out."

At the end of the statement, he said, "We just need Congress to finish the job." Now, this is maybe halfway there because the House of Representatives, they now have to either take up this legislation or come up with their own legislation, and it's by no means a done deal, is it, Dana?

BASH: Not at all. And the chances of the House Republican leaders taking up the Senate legislation, which is, again gives a path to citizenship and does pour a lot of money into securing the border is basically zero. They've already said that it's dead-on-arrival. They said that speaker, himself, said today that if they do anything, that they're going to take up their own version of it.

Many other leaders have said that passing what the Senate did is a pipe dream, because what the talk is now is of them doing it piecemeal, because a lot of conservatives in the House are from districts that are very, very red, Wolf, and they don't have a lot of Hispanic voters. So, their pressure is to focus a lot more on border security, less on giving illegal immigrants a path to citizenship.

And many of them say that they don't even want to touch that until the border secure at least that they know it is secure for years.

BLITZER: And John Boehner keeps saying he's not even going to let it come up on the floor, unless, he knows for sure that a majority of the Republicans members of the House will support it. So, that's a big, big issue going forward. All right. Dana, thanks very, very much. This is by no means a done deal yet.

Up next, justice left, right, and senator. Are politics now driving the U.S. Supreme Court?

And President Obama talks about what he won't do to capture America's most wanted leaker.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BLITZER: Happening now --

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BLITZER (voice-over): President Obama says he isn't going to be scrambling jets. So, just how far is he willing to go to track down the NSA leaker, Edward Snowden?

And a major decision for the New Jersey governor, Chris Christie, with a controversial measure of banning so-called gay conversion therapy heading to his desk.

I'm Wolf Blitzer. You're in the SITUATION ROOM.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BLITZER (on-camera): A series of major rulings with something to upset just about everyone. The Supreme Court handing down decisions this week on some of the most controversial political issues facing the country, but has the court itself become too political? Our national political correspondent, Jim Acosta, has been listening to all sides. Jim, what are you hearing?

JIM ACOSTA, CNN NATIONAL POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Wolf, this week, the Supreme Court looked a lot like the rest of Washington, and for that matter, the rest of the nation evenly divided, 50/50, mostly down partisan lines, but guess what? That's pretty much how it was supposed to be.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ACOSTA (voice-over): All week long the Supreme Court felt more like a tennis court with decisions flying back and forth. First, conservatives had there day in the Supreme Court's 5-4 decision against the Voting Rights Act, leading liberals to cry judicial activism.

REP. HANK JOHNSON, (D) GEORGIA: An act of the U.S. Supreme Court cynically legislating from the bench Jim Crow-style, engaged in historic overreach.

(CHEERING AND APPLAUSE)

ACOSTA: But then progressives came out on top and the high court's ruling striking down the Defense of Marriage Act, prompting a backlash from the right.

REP. MICHELE BACHMANN, (R) MINNESOTA: They're asserting the supremacy of the court over all three branches of government.

JONATHAN TURLEY, CONSTITUTIONAL LAW PROFESSOR: When you look at this court, it is a divided court, but it's not a politically divided court. It's an ideologically divided court.

ACOSTA: Justices Sotomayor, Breyer, Kagan, and Ginsburg are reliably on the left. Chief Justice John Roberts, Scalia, Alito, and Thomas on the right with the Republican appointed Kennedy often claimed the decisive swing vote. The court is so divided, 30 percent of the decisions this past year were 5-4.

Kennedy sided with the majority 91 percent of the time. That explains the razor thin margins of the Roberts court in recent years on issues ranging from gay rights to the influence of money and politics as in the case of Citizens United. Law professor, Jonathan Turley, says it's all a reflection of a supremely divided nation.

JONATHAN TURLEY, CONSTITUTIONAL LAW PROFESSOR: If you walk across the street, you'll find a divided Congress. And that's not strange. And if you walk in the neighborhood, you'll find a divided country. We are a country that has very strong conservative and liberal wings. It is not strange that the make-up of the court is a microcosm for society itself.

JUSTICE ANTONIN SCALIA, SUPREME COURT: I don't think any of my colleagues on any cases vote the way they do for political reasons.

ACOSTA: In an interview with CNN last year, Justice Antonin Scalia insisted he and his colleagues are acting on principles, but cautioned their appointments did come from just down Pennsylvania Avenue.

SCALIA: So it should be no surprise that the -- the five appointed by the Republicans tend to have a certain judicial philosophy and the four appointed by the Democrats tend to have a different one. I mean, that's what elections have been about for a long time.

ACOSTA: Turley says that's the way the system is supposed to work.

(On camera): Did the court work this week?

TURLEY: I think the court worked exactly the way the framers hoped it would work. The framers wanted presidents to renew the court with new appointees, new voices. They expected the court would shift with the attitudes and values of society. Well, it has.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ACOSTA: Indeed it did. Now affirmative action, prayer and public spaces and presidential appointment powers are all expected to come up in the next term of the Supreme Court and once again, with this deeply divided court, the rest of the country will be keeping score -- Wolf.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: And as Justice Scalia says, elections do matter obviously as far as the Supreme Court is concerned.

Jim Acosta, thanks very much.

Let's dig a little bit deeper right now with "TIME" magazine's deputy Washington bureau chief Michael Crowley. There's the cover of the new issue of "TIME" magazine, "The Pursuit of Happiness." What a wonderful pursuit that is.

Also joining us our chief political analyst Gloria Borger and our senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin is a real authority on the Supreme Court.

Is the Supreme Court, Jeffrey, becoming too politically active, shall we say?

JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: No. I think the court reflects the political divisions in the country and specifically the court reflects the disappearance of moderate Republicans. Think about the last three justices to leave the court, Sandra Day O'Connor, David Souter, John Paul Stevens, all moderate Republicans who sometimes voted with the liberals, sometimes with the conservatives. They're all gone.

We now have a court where there are five Republicans and four Democrats and eight of the nine vote predictably along those lines most of the time.

BLITZER: Well, that always, Jeffrey, Justice Chief -- the Chief Justice voted to uphold Obamacare last time and Justice Kennedy, who was named by President Reagan, he voted to do away with the Defense of Marriage Act.

TOOBIN: Well, eight of the nine, I said. And Justice Kennedy is certainly the one who changes most -- who is the vote in the --

BLITZER: You don't include the justice -- chief justice you don't include in that potential swing vote?

TOOBIN: I don't and I got to be honest with you, Wolf, I am still baffled and amazed that Chief Roberts voted the way he did in the healthcare case. I don't understand it. I am -- it is completely out of character for him but he did and, you know, that's why we listened to the opinions. Because we can't predict them all the time.

BLITZER: Yes.

GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: Wolf, Jeffrey is never going to get over that.

BLITZER: I know. But, Gloria, as far as the criticism from the right, for example, and Newt Gingrich and others, they said the court is becoming too politically active and they're trying to legislate from --

(CROSSTALK)

BORGER: Unless it's overturning the Voting Rights Act.

BLITZER: Unless -- right. Unless it's something like that. So --

BORGER: OK. So I -- I think when you lose you say the court is activist. OK? So Newt Gingrich says it's an activist -- it's an activist court, say, on same-sex marriage. But when the court says, OK, we're going to -- we're going to overturn part of the Voting Rights Act they say that's fine.

I think what people are looking for is some sort of consistency in the court. We know that they very often rule 5-4 but you're not always going to get the kind of consistency that you might expect because, while people may be ideological, they may interpret the law within those confines differently. So, you know, you can't -- one of the great things about the Supreme Court is you can't predict it.

BLITZER: Yes. But, you know, the next three and a half years, the president, President Obama, Michael, he'll have a chance if there is another retirement, shall we say, to deal with something that will go on for 20, 30, maybe 40 years by naming a -- a new justice. MICHAEL CROWLEY, TIME MAGAZINE: Wolf, I -- you're exactly right. I always feel that one of the more underdiscussed elements of presidential campaigns is the effect on the courts. I think it's more of a long-term secondary thing. It's not one of the things that comes up in debates as often as some other pressing issues of the day. But we're seeing in the last few days how the composition of the court makes -- has this fundamental effect on the country.

And so the reelection of President Obama means that the court will go in a certain direction that's a very different one than if we had a President Romney.

I would say also that, you know, this politicization, this argument around it, really to me dates back to the "Bush v. Gore" decision in 2000, which put it in a whole new category of the perception of the country of partisanship, of ideology. And I really think that the public opinion around the Supreme Court was changed -- that was a real inflexion point that we still see reverberations to this day.

BORGER: What I do see in terms of public opinion in the court is the fact that the court is taking the kinds of cases that the public wants them to decide, for example, issues like same-sex marriage, that are on the public's mind, show a changing society and the court is saying you know what, we may -- we're going to have a series of conversation about things that are important in the country. So it's interesting to me because I do think they pay attention --

(CROSSTALK)

BLITZER: You know, and the other thing, Jeffrey, that -- it was sort of predictable, the vote among the nine justices when it came to doing away with the Defensive of Marriage Act. But you had an a coalition of an odd couple coalition, if will you, on dealing with Proposition 8 in California. You had very liberal justices aligning with conservative justices on each side, if you will. .

How do you explain that?

TOOBIN: Well, because I think you really had almost a consensus among all nine not to deal with Proposition 8. And that's what they didn't do. They did not address whether every state in the union -- starting with California has to have same-sex marriage. That was the issue potentially in Proposition 8. And they split on a procedural issue but they all decided they weren't going to deal with that yet.

The remarkable thing about Anthony Kennedy's opinion in the DOMA case is that he really hinted, he didn't say, but he hinted that there was a constitutional right to get married by -- for gay people in every state in the union, and you can be sure cases making that claim are starting to bubble towards the surface and the Supreme Court is not done with gay rights, it's not done with gay marriage, and abortion and campaign finance, and all those big issues will be back in force next year.

BLITZER: Well, they got three months, the justices, to take a little vacation. They'll be back in October. TOOBIN: Yes. Indeed.

BLITZER: You want to make one correction, right, Jeffrey?

TOOBIN: Yes -- yes, indeed. We were talking about the Tsarnaev case earlier and I said that the indictment said that the older brother, Tamerlan, is accused of setting off both bombs. In fact, the indictment says that each brother set off one bomb, not one -- not to the older brother doing two.

BLITZER: Right. And if you read that indictment, as you and I have, it makes it clear that the younger brother was not merely some brainwashed dupe, if you will, by the older brother. He was deeply involved, if you believe the indictment in making sure that they had all -- the weapons that they needed to kill, slaughter a lot of people.

All right, thanks very much --

TOOBIN: It's a very chilling, chilling document.

BLITZER: Yes, it certainly is.

TOOBIN: People should read it.

BLITZER: I think people should go ahead and read it. I'm sure it's online, CNN.com.

Just ahead, and so how far will the U.S. go to capture the NSA leaker Edward Snowden? President Obama reveals one limit.

Plus, the controversial therapy that claims to turn gay people straight. One state is getting closer right now to banning it for children.

But first, here is Dr. Sanjay Gupta with a preview of this Saturday's "THE NEXT LIST."

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: This week on "THE NEXT LIST," changing the lives of children born with shoulder injuries.

CHRISTIAN MCMULLAN, PATIENT'S FATHER: When Nathan was born, nerves were torn in his shoulder and he couldn't move his arm at all.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One of the things the doctors asked to us do was to help them understand what the shoulder blade was doing in individual patients.

STEPHANIE RUSSO, MEDICAL STUDENT, DREXEL UNIVERSITY: The type of research he does is very cutting edge and things that have never been done before.

JIM RICHARDS, BIOMECHANIST, UNIVERSITY OF DELAWARE: What we bring to the table is the ability to analyze human motion without involving radiation. A long-term goal of that is to be able to provide us with somewhat of a what-if scenario. So what if we took this tendon and move it to a different attachment point. How would it affect a child's movement so a surgeon can in essence perform the surgery and see what the outcome would be on the computer before ever working with a patient?

DR. SCOTT KOZIN, M.D., SHRINERS HOSPITAL FOR CHILDREN: Jim's work is extremely innovative.

GUPTA: Watch how Jim Richards' 3-D models are redefining the way surgeons treat children this Saturday 2:30 p.m. Eastern on "THE NEXT LIST."

(END VIDEO CLIP)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BLITZER: President Obama today is downplaying efforts to take the NSA leaker Edward Snowden into custody on felony charges, even as the case strains some foreign relations.

Our foreign affairs correspondent Jill Dougherty is following the latest developments from the State Department.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JILL DOUGHERTY, CNN FOREIGN AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): NSA leaker Edward Snowden is cooling his heels for another day at Moscow's airport. But is that the plan or is he stuck?

Obama administration officials are lobbying hard for countries around the world to stop him and send him back, but President Barack Obama says he's not going to do any wheeling and dealing and trading on other issues in order to get Snowden extradited.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: No, I'm not going to be scrambling jets to get a 29-year-old hacker.

DOUGHERTY: But the State Department is warning Ecuador not to grant Snowden asylum.

PATRICK VENTRELL, STATE DEPARTMENT SPOKESMAN: That would have grave difficulties for our bilateral relationship.

DOUGHERTY: The U.S. is Ecuador's largest trade partner, 40 percent of their global commerce. And some in Congress are threatening to delay or end trade preferences.

SEN. ROBERT MENENDEZ (D), FOREIGN RELATIONS CHAIRMAN: It would probably cost the Ecuadorians over 40,000 jobs and a very significant market share in areas that they export here, you know, and various products that they produce and that they export to the United States.

DOUGHERTY: Ecuadorian officials say they're not accepting any threats or pressure from anyone, but they're also denying reports they gave Snowden a safe passage document after the U.S. yanked his passport.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (Through Translator): The Ecuadorian government has never authorized the granting of any refugee document to Mr. Snowden so that he can come to Ecuador.

DOUGHERTY: While the world waits, the NSA chief is still concerned about what Snowden may do next.

GEN. KEITH ALEXANDER, NATIONAL SECURITY AGENCY DIRECTOR: I worry that there will be more leaks.

DOUGHERTY: Meanwhile, a rare glimpse into what Snowden back in 2009 thought about people like him. A technology Web site published comments believed to be Snowden's from a chatroom where he used the tag "The True HOOHA." "Those people should be shot in the genitals," he wrote. "Are they trying to start a war? They're like WikiLeaks. They're reporting classified," expletive deleted.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

DOUGHERTY: And President Obama says the White House still doesn't know exactly what the motive of Snowden is, but he does say that all of this shows that there are pretty significant vulnerabilities at the NSA and they have to be solved -- Wolf.

BLITZER: Certainly does indicate that.

All right, thanks very much, Jill.

Let's get a little bit more right with CNN's Fareed Zakaria, the host of "FAREED ZAKARIA GPS."

What did you make of the president's comments he's not about to scramble fighter jets to try to bring him back, Snowden, to the United States?

FAREED ZAKARIA, HOST, FAREED ZAKARIA GPS: Wolf, I think the president is playing a delicate game. On the one hand he wants to stress this as serious, this guy has got some bad stuff, lives may be in jeopardy, it's seriously illegal. On the other hand, he doesn't want to overplay it because he can't deliver anything right now. Snowden's in this weird no man's land, the Russians are claiming that they aren't letting him in, the Ecuadorians claimed they didn't give him travel documents.

Well, how the hell did he get on a plane? They usually do check travel documents before you get on a plane.

So the president, I think, is trying to downplay the urgency of doing something because frankly there isn't -- there isn't likely to be any progress here. But you can tell they're concerned and they're mostly concerned about what the director of the NSA said, the next set of leaks.

BLITZER: Can we assume already, as some intelligence officials clearly do, that whatever he has, the Chinese and the Russians managed to get their hands on it already?

ZAKARIA: People have said that. I think it really depends on when the Chinese figured it out and whether his computer was live in the sense of being connected either through Wi-Fi or a cable. If your computer is not connected, and it's sealed off, it's much more difficult. And I don't know that we have any evidence that the Chinese have gotten what he has yet.

BLITZER: Because that would be obviously a significant development if in fact the Chinese and the Russians have everything already that Snowden has, then the U.S. presumably could well, you know, he's a bad guy, we want him back. But they don't have to necessarily worry that others are -- that that information is still at large, if you will.

ZAKARIA: Precisely. It's not clear that they need to protect him and the data as clearly, though it will probably reveal a lot of sources and methods more than specific thing. At the end of the day, whatever cache they have is unlikely to reveal, you know, blueprints for America's nuclear arsenal. What is more likely to reveal is this is how the United States attacks Chinese computer systems, through the routers, through the servers. These are the protocols it follows, and therefore this is what we, the Chinese or the Russians, can do to protect ourselves. That's actually very crucial information.

BLITZER: Fareed, I'm sure we'll have a lot more on this coming up Sunday morning. "FAREED ZAKARIA, GPS" 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Eastern on Sunday. Must watch TV every Sunday.

Fareed, thanks very much.

ZAKARIA: Thank you, Wolf.

BLITZER: Coming up, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has to decide whether a bill to ban gay conversion therapy, as it's called, for minors will become law.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BLITZER: A few hours ago the New Jersey Senate passed a bill that would ban what's called conversion therapy for minors, which proponents claim can turn gay people straight.

So here's the question. Will the governor, Chris Christie, sign it into law?

CNN's Poppy Harlow takes a closer look.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

POPPY HARLOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): Do you think that you were born gay?

MATHEW SHURKA, UNDERWENT CONVERSION THERAPY: I don't know. I do think that who you are is who you are.

HARLOW (voice-over): At 25, Mathew Shurka says he finally feels like himself, but it's been a painful road. He questioned his sexuality at 16, so his parents put him in conversion therapy, therapy they were told could make him straight.

SHURKA: I said to myself, you know, if I can really have the same feelings for a woman that I have for a man, then why not.

HARLOW: He saw four therapists in five years and wrote about it in his journal.

SHURKA: I come up to the point where I'm really beginning to change.

HARLOW: But he didn't change. His feelings for men remained despite these methods he was taught.

SHURKA: How to avoid thoughts of same-sex attraction, if you have any urges or attraction, how to dismiss it right away from my mind, whether it's through masturbation techniques or distraction techniques.

HARLOW: He says he was left feeling like a failure.

SHURKA: And it put me in this place of being uncomfortable with who I am. Every morning go to school and say, I'm not going to be me today, that then destroys other areas of my life, like academics, family, friends.

HARLOW: The therapy is highly controversial and is opposed by major medical groups, including the American Medical Association and the American Psychiatric Association, which says there is no scientific evidence it works. The World Health Organization says it represents a serious threat to the health and wellbeing of affected people.

DR. JACK DRESCHER, AMERICAN PSYCHIATRIC ASSOCIATION: The theories upon which these practices are based have no scientific basis, and they may also cause harm.

HARLOW: But New Jersey counselor Tara King insists it can work. She says she was a lesbian, but therapy and prayer turned her straight.

TARA KING, LICENSED COUNSELOR: I didn't leave homosexuality because I was unhappy. I left because it was a contradiction to my faith.

HARLOW: She says she's used conversion therapy on patients and a ban that would make it illegal for minors muzzles her.

KING: It prevents them from getting the help that they desire.

HARLOW (on camera): If a parent comes in and says, you know, my daughter says she's gay, we want you to change that, what do you do?

KING: If the child doesn't want to change their sexual orientation, I honor and respect what the client wants, because ultimately the child is my client, not the parent.

HARLOW: Now this won't restrict religious institution or others that are not licensed therapists from talking to youth about this. KING: Right, but they're not trained professionals, they're not licensed, they're not under a board that -- of ethics that they must follow. That's the concern.

HARLOW (voice-over): King and others say to ban this infringes on their rights.

GREG QUINLAN, PARENTS AND FRIENDS OF EX-GAYS AND GAYS: Talk therapy is talk therapy. There's no danger in talking.

HARLOW: But here's the key question, will Governor Christi sign the bill? He doesn't believe in conversion therapy but is wary of government overreach.

Mathew Shurka hopes he does.

SHURKA: It gives an opportunity for parents to question it again. What is really best for my child? And is this really appropriate for them?

(END VIDEOTAPE)

HARLOW: Now, Wolf, Governor Christie's office just sent me this statement, and it reads in full, "Governor Christie does not believe in conversion therapy and believes sexual preferences are determined at birth. The governor's office will take a close look at the final bill and its details."

What's going to be very interesting here to see is if he is following his beliefs or if he is following his thought that the government shouldn't tell parents how to raise their children. And when you look nationwide, California passed a similar ban last year, but it was challenged by a group that advocates for conversion therapy. They argued that banning this violates First Amendment rights of therapists.

So right now in California, that law is on hold pending a decision by California's Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Elsewhere, there have been similar bans proposed here in New York and in Massachusetts but not voted on yet -- Wolf.

BLITZER: We'll see if this ever winds up before the United States Supreme Court.

HARLOW: Yes, I was thinking the same thing.

BLITZER: Someday down the road. Yes. All right.

HARLOW: Yes.

BLITZER: Thanks very much. Good report, Poppy. Appreciate it.

Just ahead right at the top of the hour, Trayvon Martin's friend on the stand for a second day in the Zimmerman murder trial. Was she the star witness the prosecution hoped she'd be?

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)