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Heat Wave Hits Parts of U.S. Protesters Hold Sit-In at Florida State House; Royal Baby Watch; Alex Rodriguez Speaks to CNN

Aired July 18, 2013 - 07:00   ET


CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Also let's start this morning with what's going on with the weather. From bad, we'll say, to worse. Today could be the hottest day so far in that blistering heat wave now blanketing the northeast and Midwest. From the Dakotas to New England about 130 million people feeling the heat. Take a look at the map. Red means bad, temperatures remain in the 90s in most areas, the heat index numbers well over 100. This kind of heat can be deadly.

So we'll go right now to Indra Petersons out in Central Park monitoring the situation. Good morning, Indra.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Good morning. Exactly what you're saying, it's not just the hot temperatures and hot they're getting, but it's how long this heat is lasting. It's hard to believe we're on the fifth day of this heat wave. Unfortunately it's expanding farther to the west.


PETERSONS: It's the hottest weather this summer with the heat waves scorching a huge chunk of the nation.


PETERSONS: Officials are blaming the heat wave for two deaths, an elderly woman in Maryland, and in New York last week a Staten Island man died because of the sizzling temperatures.


PETERSONS: In Indiana a senior center lost power. Hundreds had to be evacuated as it was too dangerous to stay inside.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's all old folks so you have to take care of them.

PETERSONS: On average more than 650 people die each year from the heat. The blistering heat inside a vehicle has claimed the lives of 21 children this year. A meteorologist from Maryland shows us just how hot it can get inside your car.

JACOB WYCOFF, MARYLAND METEOROLOGIST: I'm completely miserable, I'm drenched with sweat. You can see my shirt.

PETERSONS: Working outside can be unbearable. THOMAS BENNETT, CONSTRUCTION WORKER: By the end of the day you're sluggish, you don't think as well.

PETERSONS: In California a farm was shut down after reports of an employee heat related death, the culprit a large dome of high pressure parked over the Ohio valley and the northeast. At 2:00 p.m., the hottest time of the day, and it's 94 degrees but it feels like 100 with the humidity and the ground itself over 130 degrees.

It's almost 5:00 in the morning. It should be about the coolest time of the day and it's still 82 degrees outside, and the ground's even hotter currently 88 degrees.

SUE RAETHER, MINNESOTA RESIDENT: This morning when I woke up and went outside I couldn't believe how warm it already was.


PETERSONS: I continue to stress heat is the biggest killer of all weather events, and unfortunately today moving into our fifth day for New York city more of this heat wave, and temperatures that will feel like they were hotter than yesterday. Combine above normal temperature with more humidity. Heat indices feel like 105 degrees. We're talking about that in Hartford, Connecticut, New York, 103, even Baltimore 105, Detroit will feel like 105. It looks like the heat wave is expanding. We're seeing this high pressure building farther to the west through Minnesota into the Dakotas. We need relief, couple more days to go. Eventually that cold front will slide south and we'll see severe thunderstorms popping up gradually bringing relief each day as it slides to the northeast and south. That will be on Saturday.

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: All right, Indra, thanks so much. As Indra says, it's not just the heat. I's how many days in a row there is without a break people need to worry about. We'll sweat through it together for now.

More breaking news overnight. We want to tell you about a wildfire in southern California getting bigger, tougher, and changing direction. It's now headed to a resort town in the mountains outside of Palm Springs. About 6,000 people have listen forced to leave their homes in idyll Idyllwild. That where CNN's Miguel Marquez is this morning.


MIGUEL MARQUEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The flames have already burned through more than 30 square miles, and this fire raging out of town through the California towns of Idyllwild and Fern Valley is nowhere close to being under control. Resident fearing the worst are making safety their first priority, 6,000 of them ordered to evacuate overnight.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's our house right there so we've, we're going to head to say our good-byes in case we don't come back.

MARQUEZ: At this hour the blaze only 15 percent contained according to Forest Service officials. At least seven structures have been damaged or destroyed, and as many as 4,000 more are under threat. The response by officials has been massive -- 3,000 fire personnel have been dispatched to the scene and three firefighters have already suffered minor injuries battling this inferno. In the meantime, residents are simply hoping for the best.

LINDA LAWRENCE, IDYLLWILD EVACUEE: I'm just keeping my fingers crossed that it's OK. And it looks far worse today because now it's circling around the ridge.

MARQUEZ: Miguel Marquez, CNN, Idyllwild, California.


CUOMO: For the first time since the George Zimmerman verdict we're expecting to hear from Trayvon Martin's parents this morning, this as people upset with the controversial decision are stepping up pressure on Florida's governor and the department of justice. Victor Blackwell is live in Tallahassee, Florida. Good morning, Victor.

VICTOR BLACKWELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Chris, good morning. Scores of rallies and protests are scheduled over the next few days here in Florida and across the country. But this is inside the capitol in Tallahassee. A few members of the group called the dream defenders are waking up starting to mull about as they enter hour 45 of their sit-in outside the governor's office. They demand to meet with him in hopes of changing the law here in Florida.



CROWD: Justice!

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When do we want it?


BLACKWELL: For a third day student activists refuse to leave the office of Florida Governor Rick Scott until they meet with him.

AHMAD ABUZHAID, DREAM DEFENDERS: We'd like the repeal of stand your ground or some type of modification to hold people responsible to a level that humanity expects.

BLACKWELL: The group is demanding a special session of the Florida legislature. Governor Scott responded Wednesday.

GOV. RICK SCOTT, (R) FLORIDA: I took advice from the president. We had great people on that committee. They went around the state and listened about the stand your ground laws. They came back and said we shouldn't change it and I agree with them.

BLACKWELL: Justice for Trayvon rallies were scheduled in 100 cities Saturday to urge civil rights charges against George Zimmerman.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think George got in a little bit too deep.

BLACKWELL: One of the jurors in the Zimmerman trial who spoke exclusively with Anderson Cooper now says in a statement to CNN there will be no other interviews. As for her literary agent and a rumored book deal she writes "There is not one at this time, and the relationship with the agent ceased the moment I realized what had been occurring in the world during the weeks of my sequestration."

And we're learning more about how the jurors spent their 22 days sequestered when they weren't in court. The six female jurors occasionally left the hotel, with court approval, going bowling, shopping, and to the movies. Seminole County officials estimate sequestration cost the count $33,000, all to isolate them from the controversy surrounding the trial.


BLACKWELL: I reminded members of this group that the stand your ground defense was not used explicitly during George Zimmerman's trial. They said they understand that, but they do not want this law to be a way for another, in their words, "vigilante to get off."

We have reached out to the governor's office now for two days asking if he will meet with these protesters. There has not been a response. We just received the governor's schedule. No mention of the meeting, but he will be in Tampa this afternoon. In south Florida today Democratic state house leaders and Senate leader will also hold a news conference about the stand your ground legislation. Chris?

CUOMO: All right, Victor, it got a little tricky in the Zimmerman trial. The defense waived the stand your ground hearing. They say they didn't argue it, but the language was in that defense instruction that the jury got, it was mentioned. Maybe they didn't need it, but certainly the law has raised a lot of eyebrows and concerns about shoot first laws going forward. Thank you very much for the reporting this morning.

Tonight on "AC 360" Anderson first had juror B-37. Now tonight he will interview Trayvon Martin's parents. That airs at 8:00 p.m. eastern.

BOLDUAN: Big question this morning, can NSA leaker Edward Snowden keep President Obama from traveling to Russia? He's scheduled to meet with Russian president Putin in Moscow in September. But some are saying he should rethink that trip now. CNN's White House correspondent Brianna Keilar is joining me live from Washington with more. So what is the administration saying now Brianna to these questions?

BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: When it comes to his visit to meet with Russian president Vladimir Putin, the White House is being vague, Kate, as to whether that meeting attached to the G-20 summit in St. Petersburg is going to go ahead. This is a warning to Moscow as it considers Snowden's request for temporary asylum in Russia.


KEILAR: It could be a high profile, high stakes showdown between the U.S. and Russia. The future of NSA leaker Edward Snowden could impact a planned summit between President Obama and President Putin in September or even Russia's 2014 Olympics.

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM, (R) SOUTH CAROLINA: Would I accept an invitation to sit by Putin? No. I don't want to boycott the Olympics but I want a policy that will get the Russians' attention.

KEILAR: Republican Senator Lindsey Graham has indeed gotten attention for his suggestion the U.S. boycott the Olympics in Sochi, Russia. But the White House isn't playing.

JAY CARNEY, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: You guys aren't jumping to a superficial headline, are you?

KEILAR: While not speculating on an Olympic boycott, White House spokesman Jay Carney seemed to be deliberately vague about Obama's plans to travel to a previously announced powwow between the U.S. president and Putin in Moscow tied to the G-20 summit in St. Petersburg, Russia.

CARNEY: The president intends to go to Russia in September.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You won't say Moscow?

CARNEY: I have nothing else to stay on it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You're being deliberately vague.

CARNEY: That's for you to decide.

KEILAR: But last month the president was firm he didn't want Russia's refusal to extradite Snowden to adversely affect relations with the U.S.

BARACK OBAMA, (D) PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I'm not going to have one case of a suspect who we're trying to extradite suddenly being elevated to the point where I've got to start doing wheeling and dealing.

KEILAR: Putin seems to agree, saying he wants this Snowden situation resolved.

VLADIMIR PUTIN, RUSSIAN PRESIDENT, (via translator): We have warned Mr. Snowden that any harm he might do to Russian-U.S. relations is unacceptable.


KEILAR: President Obama has made clear he has bigger issues with Russia than Edward Snowden. Russia has repeatedly thwarted U.S. attempts to put more pressure on Syria and Iran. But it really creates this optics problem, Kate and Chris, when the president may be heading to Russia at a time where Edward Snowden could be living and working there. As far as the Olympics go, if you're a fan of the luge or figure skating, I think you're going to be able to see your favorite team, the U.S., compete in the Russian winter Olympics.

BOLDUAN: Brianna, thank you. Who knew you'd be talking about the Olympics but sometimes it happens. One thing we have is time. The Olympics are not until next year. The visit to Russia is not until September. There's a lot that can happen in a week in Washington.

CUOMO: As you were saying, if the president shows up and Snowden is living there the word "awkward" comes to mind.

BOLDUAN: It's very true.

CUOMO: Lot of news this morning. Let's get to Michaela, keeping the pressure on the Congress about the student loans.

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: Absolutely. And it looks like it might be paying off. A group of senators have reached a tentative bipartisan deal on student loan interest rates offering college students lower interest rates by 2015, then it starts climbing. Rates would be linked to financial markets but are capped at different levels for undergrads, grad students, and parents. One of the deals could happen today or next week.

The officer who used to be in charge of preventing sexual assualts in the Air Force goes on trial today in Arlington, Virginia, accused of groping a woman in a parking lot. Lieutenant Colonel Jeffrey Krusinski could face up to a year in jail and a $2,500 fine if convicted. CNN has learned that the Navy and Mraines will soon be publishing information about military sexual assault cases online but without the name of the service members involved.

The families of the 20 children and six adults killed in last year's Newtown massacre will each receive $281,000. An oversight board also decided the 12 children who witnessed it and survived will also get $25,000. Two injured teachers will split $150,000. The Newtown Sandy Hook Foundation also set aside $3.7 million to a long-term community fund.

A word to the wise, do not cross 96-year-old Margaretta Wolf. She had nerves of steel when a masked man came into mom and pop store wanting cash. She stood her ground and even offered a consolation prize.


MARGARETTA WOLF, STORE OWNER: I said you can have all the Tootsie Rolls you want, but I'm not opening that cash register.


PEREIRA: Wolf has apparently run that store for more than 50 years. The would-be robber apparently spotted a security camera pointed at him and the register, got spooked and ran away. Police say Margaretta is just fine, nerves of steel.

BOLDUAN: How can you try to steal from a woman like Margaretta? CUOMO: Because you have no morals.

PEREIRA: Police are proud of her but are glad it didn't turn out dimple.

CUOMO: You're exactly right. Everybody says confronting in those situations is not the best thing to do. Thank god this one turned out the right way. No Tootsie Rolls for him.

BOLDUAN: All right people, let's talk about it, the royal baby expected to arrive any day, any moment now. But how soon after the duchess of Cambridge goes into will the public know and when will we know if it's the next future king or queen of England? CNN's royal correspondent Max Foster is in London this morning with all the details we could conjure up. Good morning, Max.

MAX FOSTER, CNN ROYAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Kate. Well the duchess of Cambridge isn't in London yet. She's still out in Barkshire, the family home. Let's look at the process that will unfold if she does go into labor.


FOSTER: Kate is likely to go into labor in one of two places, Buckleberry in Barkshire where her family lives, or at her home in Kensington palace, London. If in Buckleberry, she could go by helicopter or by road with a police escort straight to the Royal Barkshire hospital in Redding, or she could carry on to her hospital of choice in London.

Shortly after she arrives the media will be informed by e-mail that she's gone in. Once the baby is actually born, and who knows how long that will take, the queen, the royal family, the Middletons, and the prime minister will all be told.

Then a birth notice will be taken from the hospital and driven to Buckingham Palace. The notice will be placed here for the public to view on the full court of Buckingham Palace. This is where we'll discover the sex and weight of the child and possibly its name.

The first glimpse of the royal heir will be here on the steps of the hospital but as the world continues to wait for the new arrival Britain's current monarch is growing impatient.

UNIDENTIFIED CHILD: Do you want Kate's baby to be a boy or girl?



QUEEN ELIZABETH: Very much, I would like it to arrive. I'm going on holiday!

FOSTER: The great Kate-wait continues.

(END VIDEOTAPE) FOSTER: The longer she stays in Bucklebury, the more overdue she comes as more and more speculation that she actually might end up not at this hospital, but in Redding. We're told by the palace, though, the plan is still for St. Mary's, so we're sticking here for now.

BOLDUAN: Stick there, and I'll tell you, I spent a limited time in here hometown where she grew up, and I don't think that town could handle the crush of cameras that would be running at it if she gave birth at the hospital there. It is a quaint, beautiful little town in the English countryside, and the streets are narrow. Max, keep an eye on it. E-mail me right away when you know.

CUOMO: Why did you have cause to be there in her hometown might I ask?

BOLDUAN: Is that a crime? Is that a crime? No, it was a special assignment that I was able to go on.

CUOMO: Really.

BOLDUAN: Yes, are you jealous?

CUOMO: No, I'm teasing, trying to help me help you.

BOLDUAN: Help me help you. You can see much more of the royal family as they await their newest member on my special, "Will and Kate Plus One" is airing tonight, 10 p.m. eastern right here on CNN.

PERIERA: It really should be called "Will and a Couple of Kates."

CUOMO: That's what it should be said.


BOLDUAN: They wanted me to be part of the process.


BOLDUAN: Very exciting, a very fun trip and a look at where their style and how they will continue breaking the mold of royal tradition and also what the newest member of the royal family means for the monarchy.

CUOMO: You could have asked during the labor, how does that feel?

BOLDUAN: I'll tell you when I punching you in the face.

CUOMO: Royal punch, wonder what it looks like kind of thing.

Coming up on NEW DAY, an interview with one of the biggest stars in baseball, Alex Rodriguez, I know him as A-Rod, can't say his name, we'll talk to the Yankees slugger about the new allegations that could cost him his career.

BOLDUAN: Would you lose your job, risk your home, maybe even your freedom just to mess with your neighbor? Contemplate that. We're going to introduce you to what some are calling the neighbor from hell.

CUOMO: That was not a real Corona.


CUOMO: Welcome back to NEW DAY, everybody. About 20 minutes past 7:00 in the east. Major League Baseball facing one of its biggest scandals yet. At the center of it, Yankees superstar Alex Rodriguez. More than a dozen players, including the man known as A-Rod facing possible suspension for alleged ties to performance enhancing drugs. CNN's Jason Carroll spoke one-on-one with Rodriguez, very rare opportunity. How did you make this happen and good morning Mr. Carroll.

JASON CARROLL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning to you. It was a lot of back and forth. We went down there with no guarantee we were going to get an interview. I spoke to him a few times, there was a little bit of back and forth, and finally he agreed to do it. He doesn't like doing a lot of interviews. He doesn't want his words to be misunderstood. He deals with a lot of critics out there, and you know it's clearly that when you mention the name Rodriguez, you get a lot of people say look this guy isn't worth the money, we have issues with allegations, issues with medical issues, a lot of allegations out there. Rodriguez says he's innocent of the allegations and he wants to speak out to those who have been supporting him.


ALEX RODRIGUEZ, YANKEES' THIRD BASEMAN: Every day is a new day obviously in this process. There's a lot of challenges.

CARROLL: Alex Rodriguez knows a lot about challenges. He's recovered from hip surgery the second of his career. And the New York Yankee third baseman is back on the field, for now with a AA team the Trenton Thunder. Getting back in the game, the real game, may be his greatest challenge, one he hopes to overcome with help from fans.

RODRIGUEZ: The support has been overwhelming and it's fueled me. This has been a very difficult process and I'm humbled by the opportunity to play baseball. I love this game so much. I hate the noise but hopefully that goes away soon and we can get back to playing baseball.

CARROLL: Part of the so-called noise Major League Baseball's investigation into allegations linking Rodriguez and other players to this Florida clinic, shut down for distributing performance-enhancing drugs.


CARROLL: Rodriguez denies being treated by the clinic, a possible suspension from the team, a $114 million contract and his legacy hang in the balance.

(on camera): A lot of pressures, a lots of allegations out there. How are you managing to deal with that while also trying to manage the physical part of trying to come back?

RODRIGUEZ: That's a good question. I mean, that's never easy and it's not fun.

CARROLL: What's harder? Is it the mental or is it physical? Which one is harder?

RODRIGUEZ: I think in this case, it's both.

CARROLL: What happens if there is a suspension? And how disappointed would you be if you're not able to come back?

RODRIGUEZ: Well, I'm going to focus on the positive, you know? Obviously, that situation I can't comment on at the moment, but I'm really looking forward to coming back to New York. I feel like I owe the Yankee fan base my A game. I don't think they had that last year.

CARROLL: No negotiations going on, no sort of plea deals -- nothing like that? No deals being made?

RODRIGUEZ: Well, I don't think there's anything going on right now. That's as far as I'm going to take it. I think it's important that we have a process. I think we have good system with Major League Baseball and let's let the process play out.

CARROLL: If something is not ruled in your favor, would you want to continue to fight?

RODRIGUEZ: You know, I'd just rather not get into any of that right now. I mean, it's premature and we'll let the process play out. That's my responsibility right now.


CARROLL: The question now is will Rodriguez be suspended? That answer will come once Major League Baseball concludes its investigation. No confirmed time period as of yet. An MLB spokesman told CNN we are in the midst of an ongoing investigation and cannot comment. Rodriguez's rehabilitation period ends this Sunday. If he does not get injured he says he'll be ready to play for the Yankees on that on Monday that will be in Texas. We'll see, but once again a lot of folks out there who say he shouldn't even be able to come back to the Yankees given his performance in the past and the allegations out there.

BOLDUAN: And in his recovery, how he been playing to this point?

CARROLL: He's been playing really well out there, I mean he hit a home run, he's been doing well playing for the AA team. The question is how will he play if he's able to play for the Yankees.

BOLDUAN: And how long would he come back for play.

CUOMO: Bigger question for the league. If they start making suspensions, how do they carry that forward with a problem that many believe goes throughout the whole --

CARROLL: And that's really overarching story in all this. I mean, you've got -- Rodriquez is not the only one out there who's facing these allegations. What does Major League Baseball do when they get this evidence, who do they suspend, what happens? That's the big story.

BOLDUAN: More than a dozen players under investigation that could be facing suspension if it starts. If it's the guys at the top then, who else?

CUOMO: Thanks to A-Rod for the NEW DAY shoutout here, hope you heard it at the beginning of the interview: every day is a NEW DAY. Good thing for you to remember.

BOLDUAN: Remember that.

Coming up next on NEW DAY the Boston bomber featured front and center on the latest edition Of "Rolling Stone" magazine. You see it there, has some critics saying it gives him rock star treatment. We'll discuss.

CUOMO: This is a twisted tale a Congressman who tweeted the world that his swimsuit model was his long lost daughter. We have the results of a DNA test that might shine some light on that, a NEW DAY exclusive.