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THE LEAD WITH JAKE TAPPER
Royal Baby's Name Revealed; Weiner Under Fire; Anthony Weiner's Wife Goes "All-In"; Cashing In On The Royal Baby's Name
Aired July 24, 2013 - 16:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: The royal baby now has a name, and, no, it's not "Carlos Danger."
I'm John Berman, and this is THE LEAD
The world lead, with North West already taken, William and Kate decide to go old school with their new son's name with a clear tribute to Costanza and C.K., the future King George.
The politics lead. She spoke in defense of her husband right after he admitted sexting women, even after he resigned from Congress. Huma Abedin changing the playbook for political wives wronged by their spouses.
And on the other coast, San Diego's mayor is fighting allegations that he's a grabby boss who uses come-on lines that sound like a cut-rate Barry White. Now another woman is coming forward. Wait until you hear what she says happened.
I'm John Berman, filling in for Jake Tapper this week while he takes some much-deserved time off. He wrote that line himself.
We begin with the World Lead. Who here had George in the royal baby naming pool? Because it is time to cash in. Baby Cambridge will now be known as Prince George Alexander Louis. Louis, you like that? Because clearly the palace's titles and accents weren't precious enough already.
The announcement came relatively quickly, considering it took William and Kate three weeks to announce their dog's name last year. Now we can move on to important stuff like speculating about their first word, his first major at university and his first tattoo.
As for the family, as Seinfeld's friends kept saying to him, you got to see the baby. Both the queen and Prince Harry paid a visit to see Prince George earlier today, and then the royal couple reportedly took him to Bucklebury, the couldn't sound more British village where Kate's parents live.
I want to go now to our own Max Foster, who is live at Buckingham Palace. Max has been covering this story practically since conception.
Where do we stand right now, Max? MAX FOSTER, CNN ROYAL CORRESPONDENT: We're at the end of it. You have conception and you have the name. It's the end of the baby name story, isn't it, almost?
It's interesting that George was the queen's father's name, and it is one of the Prince Charles' names, and it's a name that's very popular currently in the U.K. amongst young people, so I think it works all around. All the three names have their regal connections. Interesting that they released it today after they met the queen.
Did they speak to the queen and get her approval? I'm sure William would have gone to her, wanted her approval in some way, simply because he always defers to her on state matters, royal matters. We have the news of the baby and now they're over there in Bucklebury and trying to bond as a family.
BERMAN: Some private time. The third name there, Louis, spelled Louis, but pronounced Louis, correct? Why?
FOSTER: That is right. It's got some French roots to it, and that's just the way we say it over here. Louis is the name.
They might choose to call him Louis. It's not unheard of, royals to use their middle names or Brits even to use their middle names. So might wend up being known as Prince Louis instead of Prince George. Certainly for now he's Prince George.
BERMAN: Fascinating. We are still learning your ways there, Max. Max Foster for us at Buckingham Palace, thank you so much.
Let's talk more now about that first name, George. It is an illustrious name with a rich history. We owe a debt of gratitude to many famous Georges for some of the things we value most from America itself all the way to Tatooine.
BERMAN (voice-over): George Washington, George Clooney, George Burns, George Jones, George Michael, George Clinton.
George Bush, George Bush, George Bush, George Steinbrenner, George Costanza, King George, King George, King George, King George, and King George. George Lucas, George Stephanopoulos, George Stroumboulopoulos, George Takei, Babe Ruth, or should we say George Herman Babe Ruth, George Brett, George C. Scott, George Foreman, George Patton, George Orwell.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have money and property.
BERMAN: And finally Curious George.
BERMAN: So, that's not even mentioning George Jetson and George Jefferson. What is the point of this exercise, you ask? Well, nothing but to suggest the future king of England could be a funkadelic naughty little monkey, power hitter, who is strong with the force.
So now that we're through with that, let's turn to some experts to actually tell us about the real actual significance of choosing the name George. We have some guests who know a lot about this.
Kate Williams is CNN's royal historian. She is standing outside Buckingham Palace. And Victoria Arbiter is a CNN royal commentator and the daughter of Queen Elizabeth's former press secretary.
OK, Victoria, George Alexander Louis, none of those names really a surprise if you looked at the betting tables. Explain to me where they all came from.
VICTORIA ARBITER, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: You're absolutely right.
George is, of course, the patron saint of England, but as you mentioned the rundown of Georges, there have been six previous Georges since 1714. It was also the name of the queen's beloved grandfather, George V, who was technically the founder of the House of Windsor.
Yes, George was kind of obvious. Alexander, there have been three Scottish kings by that name. Princess Alexandra is William's godmother. Alexandra is also the queen's middle name, so the male form of that. Louis Alexander was Prince Philip's grandfather, so I like -- although Philip is not included in it, we're seeing a tribute to Philip's family.
Louis is after Earl Mountbatten. He was Philip's uncle. He was Charles' honorary godfather and Charles absolutely adored him, and William shares Louis as a middle name. So they managed to get in a lot of family references. I don't think they would have thought of this, but the second Earl Spencer was also named George. While they may not have thought about it, there's a distant nod to Diana's family, too.
BERMAN: For a lot of Americans who get a lot of our British history from the movies, "The King's Speech" was about George VI, so they made it accessible at least to us, the name.
Kate, let me ask you, William's full name is William Arthur Philip Louis. That's four names. Is it surprising the new prince just has three?
KATE WILLIAMS, CNN ROYAL HISTORIAN: You know, you are so right.
Royals in history tend to have a lot of extra names. Edward VIII, the queen's uncle, he had seven, seven to choose from, but what we're seeing here is what we have seen throughout this period of the baby being born. William and Kate are a very modern couple. What they want to do is modernize the monarchy.
That means making them a bit less stuffy, a bit more down to earth, a bit more like the rest of us. And losing one of those names coming down to three is absolutely a part of that. They're really moving toward trying to say, OK, chaps, we're more like you.
WILLIAMS: We can put the car seat in. We drive ourselves off, and we give ourselves three names.
BERMAN: Three names instead of four is less stuffy. I guess everything is relative there.
Kate, what about a last name? He still has a lot of those to choose from also. He can go by Wales, Windsor or Cambridge, I suppose.
WILLIAMS: He can, but princes don't need a last name. The rest of us do to distinguish us in the world of work, but this child, he is now the George. He's already got his own Wikipedia page, he has his own Wikipedia page within a few minutes of the announcement.
He's just George. He won't need a surname, but if he will want to use one at school, because at school they have to call out the register and say something it will be very likely he will call himself Windsor.
BERMAN: Victoria, let me ask you last question here. You mentioned the tie to Diana's family. I think some people were hoping for something a little more explicit, a little more clear. Any chance you may see a Spencer name or direct links to the Spencer family or Diana if there is a second child for William and Kate?
ARBITER: If there is a second child, it's possible, because the pressure will be off, it won't be the future heir, so they won't need to worry about the constant comparisons.
I know a sentimental favorite was Diana for a little girl. That was never going to happen, but I did think we may see Frances included, because Frances is also Michael Middleton's middle name, as well as Diana's middle name. So it's certainly possible for a spare and then a second spare to have more of a nod towards Diana.
BERMAN: All right, Kate Williams, Victoria Arbiter, thank you so much. Thanks for being with us all week covering this story and helping explain it all to us. Appreciate it.
Coming up next for us in politics, the tabloids are calling her the Huma shield. While everyone is arguing about her motives, nobody is doubting the guts it took for Huma Abedin to face the press after her husband's latest sex scandal.
Coming up later, stay classy, San Diego. The city's mayor now facing another sexual harassment claim, but he says he's not going anywhere. We're going to talk to the second accuser live. Stay with us.
BERMAN: Welcome back to THE LEAD, everyone.
I'm Antonio Verboten. That's what I got when I used Slate's Carlos Danger name generator. That of course is the somewhat horndog alias that Anthony Weiner allegedly used in a whole series of newly surfaced online messages.
In our politics lead, Weiner said he's staying in the race to be New York City's next mayor after both "The New York Times" and "The New York Daily News" called on him to drop out.
Weiner's wife, Huma Abedin, was by Weiner's side during yesterday's press conference, which honestly looked like it was being held in a Dunder Mifflin branch. She even spoke in his defense after he admitted that he kept on sexting even after he resigned from Congress over the whole mess.
It's got many people wondering if Weiner really learned his lesson after all.
I want to bring in now our chief congressional correspondent, Dana Bash.
Dana caught up with Anthony Weiner outside of his apartment today.
What is former congressman saying now?
DANA BASH, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I should say there was a gaggle of press, as you can imagine, outside his apartment and effectively what Anthony Weiner was trying to say is, nothing to see here, nothing has changed, I'm still running for mayor, and nothing will stop me from doing that.
Listen to what he told reporters on that issue.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ANTHONY WEINER (D), NEW YORK MAYORAL CANDIDATE: Everyone has to decide. Look, I know there are people who may well never conceive of voting for me because of the things that are in my past.
I get that. And even for those people, I want them to hear about my ideas. But I have to tell you, for those of you who have been out on the campaign trail, you know, people want to talk about housing, they want to talk about how they can find affordable -- jobs that have benefits, and I'm going to keep talking about those things.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BASH: He also sent an e-mail to supporters this afternoon, John, trying to appeal to New Yorkers' sensibilities, and as a New Yorker I know you know what I'm talking about. He said that New Yorkers don't quit, I will never quit on you.
But he also did acknowledge the mistake, basically the fumble in this play for redemption that he's making here in the mayor's race by not disclosing early on that he did continue with these sexual exchanges with nameless women out there on the Internet, and he says -- quote -- "I regret not saying explicitly when these exchanges happened, but the bottom line is that news today is about my past life." But as you mentioned really the news that people here in New York City awoke to were two lead editorials in very, very big prominent newspapers, "The New York Times" and "Daily News," really skewering him in a pretty graphic way.
BERMAN: Interesting in that statement he made, Dana, he has new regrets to add on to the old regrets. But he says he's still going, got campaign events later today. Dana Bash in New York for us, thanks so much. We will see you a little later.
This story has sparked such a discussion and debate around the country today. And the reason is frankly what Huma Abedin did was fairly unprecedented, even shocking to many people.
You better believe we have seen sex scandals before and, yes, the political sex scandal trait seems to be a male-dominated industry. But in terms of the spousal response, in the past, it's broken down in really two ways. There's the good wife and the gone wife.
But now we have this third option, the go-all-in wife.
BERMAN (voice-over): The good wife, so iconic, so familiar, they made a TV show out of it.
Hillary Clinton on "60 Minutes" by Bill Clinton's side after the Gennifer Flowers scandal, and at least near his side after Monica Lewinsky.
Silda Spitzer, not happy, but not missing either after husband Eliot's prostitution proclivity went public.
"The Gone Wife", Jenny Sanford, nowhere to be seen after her husband's so-called hike on the Appalachian Trail turned out to be another kind of physical exertion with his Argentinian mistress.
LARRY KING: Did you think of going to that person (ph)?
JENNY SANFORD, FORMER FIRST LADY OF SOUTH CAROLINA: No, never crossed my mind.
BERMAN: But now the go all in wife. Huma Abedin, not timid by talking, not standing but charging head first into this scandal discussion.
HUMA ABEDIN, ANTHONY WEINER'S WIFE: Anthony has made some horrible mistakes, both before he resigned from Congress and after. But I do strongly believe that is between us and our marriage. We discussed all of this before Anthony decided to run for mayor. So really what I want to say is: I love him, I have forgiven him, I believe in him, and as we have said from the beginning, we moving forward.
BERMAN: I want to bring in our panel to discuss this new role that Huma Abedin has potentially created here.
Hanna Rosin is a senior editor at "The Atlantic", and the co-founder of "Slate's" women section called "Double X."
And Gloria Borger is CNN's chief political analyst.
Hanna, I want to start with you. She said, "It's between us and our marriage." What do you think when you heard her say that? In your column today, you also really seem to think that Huma was empowering herself somehow.
HANNA ROSIN, CO-FOUNDER, SLATE DOUBLEX: We've never seen anything like it this -- a woman get up and not just stand silently by her husband in that good wife way that you described, but actually defend her decision, talk about all the therapy that she's been through. This is not something I can remember any cheater's wife, let's call them, doing in the past political scandal. I thought it was pretty brave.
She was actively making a case for why she chose to stay with her husband. Usually when a woman stays with her husband, we think of her as a victim, feminists, kind of, turn on her. I can't believe she stayed with that loser. She had no stench of victim about her in this whole scandal. She came away, I thought, like looking pretty good.
GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: She didn't seem like a victim, but she still seemed like she was in therapy, you know? She was sort of -- I love him, I've forgiven him, therefore you have to forgive him, too. And I thought, what was missing was -- this is why he would still be a great mayor, OK?
So, it was sort of still all in the personal, almost as if she was still going through it herself in an odd way publicly, which was kind of breathtaking to watch.
BERMAN: There was the personal side, even, of course, what happens in their marriage, a lot of people would say, should stay in their marriage, it's not our business, but it was a political statement by going out there the way she did. She publicly endorsed his candidacy for mayor. And can her political statement -- not the personal one -- can that be criticized?
ROSIN: Yes, this is a tricky one. We tend the judge the woman as the wife. You know, the question people ask about her is how could you stay with him? And so, on that part, I feel like she's pretty clingy. She explained that to us.
I think the more difficult thing is she actually makes it possible for him to continue. He drew a direct line between her forgiveness and the forgiveness of New Yorkers. He actually says that during the press conference. And so, she is playing a political role, whether she chooses to or not.
BORGER: Well, and what New Yorkers might be surprised about is that he was still continuing the sexting a year after he resigned from the Congress. She made it clear that that was something he knew about, and they still made the decision to have him run for mayor, which was a question I think a lot of people are kind of scratching their heads about.
If she knew this a year ago this might come out and that this might come out and he had been doing it for song, and she still gave her permission, if you will, for him to run, that's interesting --
BERMAN: This is to both of you here, for some of our viewers who may not know her background, her biography -- she is not new to politics. This is not her first campaign. She's got a lot of political experience.
I'm wondering if you can at least speculate on the political decision behind this for her. What is she after?
ROSIN: I thought about that a lot because I felt like she came across so much better than he did, you know? He seemed like he was practically yawning. She seemed weirdly from the whole process and she seemed so absolutely present that I had kind of a Lady Macbeth thought creepiness in, that -- you know, he's the one we should petty and she's the one who's got some career ahead of her.
BORGER: But she's the one behind the scenes, usually. She's the one behind Hillary Clinton, always present but never center stage, and I think yesterday she in a way became the character witness for the candidate, and without her, he still wouldn't be a candidate today.
BERMAN: And she became the discussion, because so many people are saying today, what is she thinking, really? They're dying to know.
ROSIN: I mean, look what happened with Jenny Sanford. You know, people were asking her if she would run after that. I mean, the way Jenny Sanford --
BORGER: Her husband was asking her that he wanted --
ROSIN: Yes, I mean, if she could run his campaign. I mean, it's almost like being a cheater's wife is a good career move, you know?
BORGER: I'm not so sure about that.
BERMAN: Hanna Rosin and Gloria Borger, thanks so much.
We have about 46 more days to go in this election, so there could be more twists and turns to come.
Coming up, they're calling him "Prince George". So what does that mean for the bookies who set the bets -- who won the bets on the royal baby's name? We're going to look at the payout.
Also, Hillary Clinton hasn't thrown her hat into the ring action but her opponents are throwing everything but the kitchen sink at her in a new attack, ad already. The question, will dredging up old scandals from the 1990s still stick?
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) BERMAN: Welcome back, everyone.
Back to the "World Lead". If you bothered to bet on the royal baby's name, are you cashing in or are you running from your bookie?
CNN's Zain Asher joins us now live from New York.
OK, Zain, break it down for us. Just how much money did the team George posse bring in?
ZAIN ASHER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Listen, John, the name George is actually costing the betting houses a lot of money. It ended up being a 5:2 favorite. So, those are the odds. That means if you bet $100 on the new George, your payout would be $250. Not bad at all.
Ladbrokes, which is a big British betting house, is paying out about $230,000 to all the people who bet correctly on the name George. Paddy Power, another betting house, is paying out about $383,000.
Just to give you some context, this is the biggest non-sport betting event ever in the history of the U.K., a total of about $2 million spent on royal baby name bets. By the way, I do want to mention that different betting houses have different odds. Obviously, the odds change over time.
So, if you got it early, say several months ago when Kate Middleton announced that she was pregnant, and you did that on the name George, chances are would be laughing all the way to the bank right now.
BERMAN: It is nice to see the house losing for a change, everyone. And I have to say that.
What other bets are left? There are a lot of royal baby bets, aren't there?
ASHER: Oh, absolutely. So, the Brits -- or I should say we Brits -- are having a lot of fun with this one. So, you can, of course, bet on the baby's first words, the first international visit. Canada is certainly a favorite for that.
And even, you know, things like the baby's university and his career. You can also bet on the name of the baby sibling and when that sibling will be born. A lot of people are saying 2015 for that one -- John.
BERMAN: So, the first word. I mean, what kind of bets can you make on the first word? So, you bet on ga or da or like Queen Elizabeth. I mean, what can you bet on?
ASHER: Well, you could make very obvious bets, things like papa and mama, you know, that is obviously fairly obvious. But you can also bet on the longer words, so things like Pippa, Harry, and the queen.
And also, check this out, you can actually bet on supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. That is a 500:1 that that will be the baby's first words. So, if you put in $1, you get about $500 back if that is the first word. BERMAN: I go with Pippa, just saying.
All right. Zain Asher in New York, thank you so much. Great having you on.
Coming up -- while New York is talking about Anthony Weiner, California is talking about San Diego's Mayor Bob Filner, who's now facing a second sexual harassment claim. I'm going to speak live with one of the women who says he went too far. That's coming up, next.