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Shutdown Showdown Now in the Senate; Cruz's Crusade Against Obamacare; Crackdown on Fake Online Reviews; Teen Reunited With Father; Peyton & Broncos Record-Setting Night

Aired September 24, 2013 - 06:30   ET


MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: At least 62 people have been killed. There's no idea on how many hostages remain but the Kenyan Red Cross says more than 60 people are still unaccounted for.

President Obama, meanwhile, speaking to the U.N. General Assembly later this morning. He's expected to face a skeptical audience there. The international community no doubt mindful that he almost ignored the U.N. and the Security Council altogether as he considered taking action against Syria over the use of chemical weapons. The world will also be watching to see if he meets with Iran's President Rouhani which would be an historic move.

Closing arguments set to begin in the Michael Jackson wrongful death trial after five months of testimony. Attorneys for the Jackson family will go first. Lawyers for concert promoter AEG Live will wrap up their case tomorrow. The trial is expected to go to the jury on Thursday. They'll have to decide whether AEG, which was promoting Jackson's 2009 comeback concern, is liable for the singer's death.

A surfer in Florida bitten by a shark in the Atlantic off Jupiter, Florida. Brandon Dugan says he just finished surfing and grabbed his board to go ashore when he felt a sharp pain in his arm. Well, that was a shark. He needed 15 stitches to close the wound. He thinks the shark was drawn to the blue watch he was wearing that day. Dugan not scared by this incident at all, says he cannot wait to get back in the water.

And finally, it's kind of our wildlife report, it must be the Slurpees. Check out these 300-pound bear, hanging out in the tree, outside a local 7-Eleven. He stayed there for seven hours. It took quite a bit of coaxing from wildlife officials.

But the bear finally came down, hopped over a wall and took off. They are hoping he'll head back to the nearby state park where he came from. He hasn't had a taste of the Slurpees at 7-Eleven.

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: Who doesn't like the Slurpees?

PEREIRA: Are you a Slurpee girl?


PEREIRA: Really?

Silence from Chris Cuomo.

BOLDUAN: Silence is what we get.

PEREIRA: So rare.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: I would have them on, take anytime (INAUDIBLE).


BOLDUAN: All right. Let's move now to our political gut check.

Less than a week left for Congress to break the stalemate to avoid a government shutdown, tomorrow, the Senate set to take up the first test vote on the House bill to fund the government, while at the same time defunding the president's health care law. Democrats, even some Republicans, call it dead on arrival. So, what happens next?

CNN's chief national correspondent John King here in studio this time to break it all down.

That means it's important because you're here. And I appreciate that.


BOLDUAN: You're going to give me silence, too.


BOLDUAN: This is going to be a great show. This is going to be a great show.

OK, Mr. King, so tell me --

KING: Maybe if we give them all Slurpees rational activity might come out of Washington.

BOLDUAN: I think that might be what we're going to have to resort to. We have what's likely to set up for a test vote tomorrow, at the same time the focus seems to be on Ted Cruz, because he seems to be the wedge not only between avoiding government shutdown, but a wedge in his own party.

What is he doing and why isn't their leadership, his leaders, telling him to step down?

KING: His leaders don't have a great relationship with him, number one. They would like him to step down are not the two words they would use. How about shut up? They would if they would do that.

He's become -- he's a freshman senator. Usually freshman senators have little or no influence. But because of his grassroots support out in the country, he's become essentially a one-person interest group. You know, before a big vote on gun control, you say, what is the NRA thinking? For a big vote on the minimum wage, what do unions think? People look at these groups that score votes. Ted Cruz has somehow become the barometer of how this one plays among Republicans. Trust me -- his fellow Republicans don't like him. And they don't like this. But they're thinking -- most of them are thinking about we ran to join a government, even if we disagree with decisions, we're part of the government. We have to compromise.

Ted Cruz thinks quite differently. He has said on the record many times, stopping things, blocking things is a major public policy goal.

And remember, most of them believe they will be in the legislature for a long time. But he's thinking about running for president. So, his interests are not necessarily their interesting. It's causing a lot of friction in the party.

BOLDUAN: Causing a lot of friction. But do you think there's also a chance that there will be all -- maybe I don't want to call it bluster but kind of the shouting, standing on principle and then as we get to 11:59 on September 30th, there will be a deal.

KING: A majority of Republicans, an overwhelming majority of Republicans, do not want to shut down the government. They are also heading into an election year which they are poised to make gains.


KING: And anything that they do to damage their image could hurt them in that context. They read the polls. They probably read them too much. But if you look at the polls right now, it is clear -- yes, opposition, skepticism, doubts about Obamacare are on the rise. But a clear majority of Americans say don't shut the government down to litigate this fight. There are too many other things the government does, but you can't do that.

But that's essentially going from opposition, principled opposition into stunt dummy land, to shut down the entire government to do this. And most Republicans see that.

Also before we've seen the polls they said it's the wrong thing to do. The question is how far out over his skis does Ted Cruz get? Again, he's trying to make his name for himself.

Remember, we've seen this before. Mitt Romney saying self deport in presidential primaries. You do things to cater to the conservative base that maybe come back to haunt you later or maybe don't help you in the middle of the electorate.

BOLDUAN: But we often don't see Republicans coming out so publicly to say, like Bob Corker saying, I maybe didn't go to an Ivy League but I certainly know how to do math.

KING: That's getting personally in the sense that a lot of them think, who is this guy? He walks in the room, he thinks he's just come to Washington and he thinks -- because of his education credentials or whatever reason, he's the smartest guy in the room. Trust me, that rubs a lot of them the wrong way. Ted Cruz is not going to win this fight in Washington. The question is, does it ultimately help him out of the country --

BOLDUAN: There's the disconnect, right?

KING: -- that he has national aspirations.

BOLDUAN: And Democrats are just happy to sit back and watch this play out. There's nothing Democrats can do to move this along or help Ted Cruz continue to blow it up.

KING: Which cliche do we want to use in politics? If your opponents are setting themselves on fire, don't bring them water. If they're in circular firing squad, don't stop them. There's no question the Democrats are enjoying the show right now.

Now, for a handful of Democrats in the Senate, who have tough races next year, this is a vote they'd rather not take. Some of the Obamacare, they will be used against some of them, but for most Democrats, this is a happy moment to watch the Republicans fight in the family.

BOLDUAN: Welcome to governing. You're going to have to take tough votes sometimes. Great to see you, John.

KING: Hmm-mm.

BOLDUAN: That's the thing you question. Great to see you. I miss my John King.

KING: Just closing out. We begin in silence, we'll close out silence.

BOLDUAN: I appreciate is acceptance, as they say in the law.

CUOMO: When I say nothing, take the good news.

KING: Detente between the Patriots and Jets fans with you in the middle.

BOLDUAN: Colts fan.

CUOMO: I know. Your teams are good. Mine is not. Let's take a break on that.

Coming up on NEW DAY, you're remodeling a bathroom, you go online, you want to check out customer reviews of the contractor you're considering. Sounds good.

But are the reviews real? We assumed movie reviews could be a little squishy. But a new scam you need to know about.

BOLDUAN: And also ahead, an emotional reunion, a father meets his son 13 years after the boy was kidnapped as an infant. Now, police have taken a member of their own family into custody over this. We'll have details on that ahead. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

BOLDUAN: Welcome back.

Let's go around the world now, starting in Tehran. People there like people here in the United States are watching to see if a possible olive branch from Iran's new president is for real. He and President Obama both speak today at the U.N.

Here's CNN's Reza Sayah.


REZA SAYAH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: What we're seeing here in Iran is remarkable. Iranians are hopeful and optimistic that after 34 years U.S./Iran relations will improve. The source of the optimism: Iran's new president Hassan Rouhani. He's exchanged letters with President Obama, released political prisoners and tweeted happy New Year to the world's Jewish community.

The big issue standing in the way: Iran's nuclear program. But Iranian leadership signaling that they could make concessions.

Now, all eyes on today's U.N. General Assembly meeting, many eager to see if presidents Obama and Rouhani shake hands -- Kate.


BOLDUAN: Reza, thank you so much.

And now to Moscow, an update on a famous Vladimir Putin protester who is spending time in prison.

Here's CNN's Phil Black.


PHIL BLACK, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Nadezhda Tolokonnikova says people in her prison are treated like slaves. She says they are forced to work 17 hours a day, sewing clothes, but allowed to sleep only four. She says they receive small portions of food, it's often rotten. The punishments are cruel and beating is common.

She admits she's never been touched physically because she's famous, but she says her life was threatened when she tried to negotiate better prison conditions. So, she said she's refusing food and work until all prisoners are treated humans. The authorities are denying her allegations.

Back to you, Kate.


BOLDUAN: All right. Phil, thanks so much.

So, you know the old saying, if it seems good to be true, it probably is. Well, it turns out that applies to thousands of online reviews it looks like, and the New York state attorney general is cracking down.

Check out this review for a bus company. "U.S. Coachways does a great job." The problem, that review is fake. It was written by the owner.

Let's bring in the host of CNN's "YOUR MONEY," Christine Romans, to break it down for us.

So, what do you know about this investigation?

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Well, it was interesting. It was a year-long investigation in New York. They found hundreds of cases of this and the attorney general got $350,000 in settlements from these companies.

Look, you can't believe everything you read on the Internet, especially when you're going and you're looking for these reviews for all different kinds of companies. It just is another reason to be very, very skeptical. There are real reviews out there but some of the very well known names like Yelp and City Search and even a Google local, there were fake reviews the New York written by like 17-year- olds.

BOLDUAN: Is there certain type of company that's posting these fake reviews?

ROMANS: A bunch of different kinds of companies. But some of them are dangerous. I mean, the New York attorney general, for example, found dentists, lawyers and ultrasound clinic but more often it was sort of laser hair removal, teeth whitening clinics, stuff like that. But they found a lot of different cases of this, and that charter bus operator that you showed in particular.

In some cases, look, they're hiring a search engine optimization company, a reputation scrubber, to get in there and help them clean up negative reviews. And that's what this was.

But imagine, you know, trying to find a contractor and some 17-year- old has written the posting. You should be very, very careful.

PEREIRA: I use it a lot but I think the key is maybe being a skeptical user. Know how to read them and what kind of things to look for.

What are other tips do they see you spot --

ROMANS: When you see a billboard on the side of the road, you know it's an advertisement.


ROMANS: It's hard to spot false advertising in there.


ROMANS: This is what you have to do. You have to look for specific information. Anything that's general or just, hey, it's great, don't believe that. Look for specific information.

Compare reviews across different Web sites. And, you know, just use -- you have to use your common sense. If it sounds like something that isn't specific enough about this business, you know, there are real reviews and fake ones, too.

It is -- it is false advertising. Those are the laws in New York that the attorney general is going after, false advertising. Be a skeptic, you're right. She called it her B.S. radar, Michaela's radar.

BOLDUAN: Good, good --


CUOMO: I'm happy that you got an attorney general doing his job and going after these things. But come on, really, did you think they were all real?

ROMANS: News flash, you can't believe everything that is written on the Internet.

CUOMO: I go by the old stand by, I know a guy who says it's pretty good.

All right. We're going to take a break. Thank you very much, Christine Romans.

ROMANS: You're welcome.

CUOMO: Coming up on NEW DAY -- listen to this story. After he was kidnapped and living life on the run, a 13-year-old boy reunited with the father he hasn't seen since he was a baby. Wait until you hear who police say abducted him. Amazing.

PEREIRA: We disagree on a lot of stuff it seems these days, but there's one thing we can all agree on.


PEREIRA: This, the cuteness of baby pandas. Our must-see moment today from China, they're celebrating the birth of some panda cubs. The cuteness factor is very high.

We'll be right back.


CUOMO: You know, when someone is abducted for more than 24 hours as you will have heard, you rarely see them again. So, imagine this story, a decade ago someone's abducted. And now, they're 13 years old, and they are found, they're coming back face-to-face with their parent, and we cannot believe the woman who has been charged with the kidnapping.

Pamela Brown is following this story. I'm being intentionally vague, but you can't really make this story up. This is the exception to the rule.

PAMELA BROWN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It certainly is. And it's truly bizarre, Chris and Kate. It really is. The pair right now privately connecting. The father and son, as you talked about, following this kidnapping that spanned at least three states and 13 years. This happy ending made possible in part by a hard-working detective, a quick-thinking school official, and a private investigator who never gave up.


BROWN (voice-over): It's the stunning story making headlines nationwide. A baby boy abducted 13 years ago, now, reunited as a teen with his father. This is his alleged kidnaper, 60-year-old Sandy Hade (ph) is actually the boy's grandmother. It all began in Florida in 2000.

DETECTIVE ERIC MENCONI, LIVINGSTON COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPT. Ed was working, come home from work and she was gone with the baby. He hasn't been able to find them since.

BROWN: The boy's father spent years searching with limited help from law enforcement, apparently, impeded by an odd Florida state law.

DANNY CEVALLOS, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: The Supreme Court has said in states have held grandparents surprisingly may have actual rights to access to the grandchildren, and that varies across states.

BROWN: Earlier this year, the boy's father and aunt hired a private investigator who helped track Hade and his from Florida to Putnam County, Missouri then to Iowa in July.

LARRY JONES, OWNER, BLACKHAWK INVESTIGATIONS: When I located her in Putnam County, the police chief informed me that grandmother and the boy had moved a month and a half previous.

BROWN: Hade and her grandson were homeless, recently living at this house in (INAUDIBLE) Missouri, with the man who offered them a place to stay, and then a break in the case when Hade tried to enroll the teen at this school, administrators grew suspicious and called police.

MENCONI: And has some concerns if they were the actual parent.

BROWN: Just days ago, police arrested Hade and picked the boy up at school, returning him to his dad for the first time since he was a baby.

JONES: I was just ecstatic. All I wanted was a happy outcome from this thing and I got it.


BROWN (on-camera): Sandy Hade (ph), meantime, is now behind bars facing child abduction charges. A preliminary hearing has been set for tomorrow where she will be assigned a public defender. And there are still no details on why she may have kidnapped her grandson in the first place. So, that is still very much a mystery.

CUOMO: Amazing story. Almost never happens. Although, when it does happen and you find them, it's almost always family.




BROWN: Thank you.

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: Time for our must-see moment of the day. Cuteness by a factor of 14. Take a look at this sleeping bunch of adorable baby pandas huddle together in a crib. All 14 artificially bred at a panda research facility in China. You're watching the moment where they were all brought together for the very first time. All were born between July and September of this year.

Obviously, they're not from the same mom. But seriously, seriously cute. I did a little research because I didn't know what is the name of a group of pandas, you know, like a pride of lions, a gaggle of geese.

CUOMO: What do you got?

PEREIRA: Sleuth. A sleuth of pandas.

BOLDUAN: A sleuth --

PEREIRA: No. A sleuth. Isn't that interesting?


CUOMO: I like this. From July to September, look at the range in size, though.

PEREIRA: Gigantic.

CUOMO: Look how fast they grow.

PEREIRA: And then there's a little one.

BOLDUAN: You have to go (INAUDIBLE) when you end up like bigger than you.

CUOMO: It's true.

BOLDUAN: All right.


PEREIRA: He's still convinced they'll eat our faces off.

CUOMO: They're wild animals, they're bears. How do you think that story ends? Here's a eucalyptus leaf, Mr. Yum! Yum! Yum! (LAUGHTER)

CUOMO: That's what happens.


BOLDUAN: Let's go to break. Coming up next on NEW DAY, the battle over the president's healthcare while it sets the stage for a government shutdown. That's the question of the week with only six days left to get a deal done, one senator taking on his party. We'll talk about it.

CUOMO: And we've been talking to you this morning about what's going on in Nairobi. There are some really disturbing questions coming out. What's happening there, but also, what could be happening here? Are we vulnerable of this type of attack? Does it have roots here? We're going to talk about it with the New York City police commissioner, Ray Kelly.


CUOMO: You remember when Peyton Manning needed major neck surgery?


CUOMO: Everybody thought the then 35-year-old quarterback was done?

BOLDUAN: Absolutely.

CUOMO: Tell that to the Raiders who learned the hard way last night that Manning and the Broncos are back, and maybe better than ever. Let's bring in Andy Scholes. He's got this morning's "Bleacher Report." I mean, the guy is phenomenal.

ANDY SCHOLES, BLEACHER REPORT: He's absolutely amazing. The rest of the AFC better look out because Peyton Manning and the Broncos offense, well, what can you say, they continue to look absolutely unstoppable. We're only three games into the season, and they're already setting records. Manning threw three more touchdowns last night, all of them coming in the first half.

He now has 12 on the season which is the most ever by a quarterback in the first three games. Broncos easily beat the Raiders, 37-21. They're a perfect 3-0 this season.

The long wait is now finally over for the Pittsburgh Pirates. After beating the Cubs last night, the Pirates secured a playoff spot for the first time in 21 years. The last time the Buccos were in the postseason, gas was just over a buck and George Bush Sr., he was the president. Since making the playoffs back in 1992, the Pirates have had 20 straight losing seasons.

That was the longest streak in professional sports. And guys, the Pirates being good comes at a good time for the city of Pittsburgh, because the Steelers, they're 0-3. So, at least they have something to cheer about there. BOLDUAN: All right.


BOLDUAN: There's always something to cheer about like Peyton Manning being amazing.


CUOMO: Andy Scholes, thanks for bringing us the bright side. Appreciate it.

BOLDUAN: Thank you so much. You hear the music, you know what it means. That means it's time for the "Rock Block," a quick roundup of the stories you'll be talking about today. First up, Michaela.

PEREIRA: Talking about making lemonade out of lemons, this first story from the New "York Daily News." After their daughter called off her wedding, an Atlanta couple had 200 of the city's homeless community join them for the four-course wedding reception dinner. I love that story.

In "The New York Post," an honor for Ray Charles, the postal service will add him to the music icon's forever stamp series. It is set to be unveiled Monday along with one of Charles' unreleased songs. Very cool.

Time for business news and Christine Romans.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Good morning. Stock futures slightly lower this morning after a 50-point fall on Wall Street Wednesday. In the past three sessions, the Dow industrials losing 276 points, pressing the pause button on that September surge.

Another big story we're following this morning, the House that Steve Jobs grew up in is being evaluated by the Los Altos Historical Commission. If approved, that house will become a protected historical site. Certainly, history for Steve Jobs -- Indra Petersons.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Yes. Definitely cool this morning, but at least we're going to see those temperatures rebounding as we go to the afternoon. In fact, we'll see average temperatures into the 70s. This is for the northeast. Down in the southeast, we're still talking about rain. There's a stationary front. And notice another front headed their way.

That means we have a threat for flooding, I should into Florida. So, more rain and more rain. The story never ends there.

BOLDUAN: You're keeping an eye on it. Thanks so much, Indra.

We're now at the top of the hour which means, of course, it's time for the top news.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I reached over, grabbed my daughter and just ran as fast as I could without looking back.

CUOMO: The deadly mall massacre, over 60 killed, scores wounded. Could it happen here? New York City police commissioner, Ray Kelly, joins us with what is known and what's being done to keep you safe.

BOLDUAN: Six days and counting. The clock ticks toward a government shutdown. And now, it's Republican versus Republican over what should be done. That debate, straight ahead.

PEREIRA: Critical development. The little girl once known as Baby Veronica is now back with her adoptive parents. Is this long, legal battle finally over?

CUOMO: Your NEW DAY starts right now.

ANNOUNCER: What you need to know --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE) Ted Cruz is a fraud and he'll no longer have any influence in the Republican Party.

ANNOUNCER: What you just have to see --

This is NEW DAY with Chris Cuomo, Kate Bolduan, and Michaela Pereira.


CUOMO: Good morning. Welcome back to NEW DAY. It's Tuesday, September 24th, seven o'clock in the east. This morning, President Obama just hours away from a big address to the U.N. Can he rally support for his crackdown on Syria? Will he make history and meet with Iran's new president? We have a live preview of the president's day and the stakes just ahead.

BOLDUAN: And, as flu season approaches, could you soon have access to a universal vaccine to fight the dreaded virus? We have new details about some groundbreaking research that may make for a healthy season for you and your family with that ahead.