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PIERS MORGAN LIVE
Senator Cruz on the Senate Floor; Interview with Tony Blair; Interview with the 5 Browns
Aired September 24, 2013 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
PIERS MORGAN, CNN ANCHOR: This is PIERS MORGAN LIVE. Welcome to our viewers in the United States and around the world. Tonight, six days and counting, the shutdown showdown, and the fauxlibuster by the junior senator from Texas happening live right now and on the Senate floor.
SEN. TED CRUZ, (R) TEXAS: Mr. Connolly was an honor student and president of the Student Assembly, but worried about taking on more debt, he ended up withdrawing from school with three credit hours to go until graduation. After a summer spent in ...
MORGAN: Who would have thought that this could overshadow Commanders-in-Chiefs past, present and possibly future, not to mention a rock star.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BONO, SINGER: I actually -- I felt like the rock star on that occasion.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: And the new president of Iran making his UN debut. We'll get to all of that of course tonight.
Also, armed and dangerous, a seventh grader suspended from middle school for shooting a pellet gun.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
KHALID CARABALLO: We were in our yard and this had nothing to do with school. I didn't have any of this at the school at any time.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: I'll have a strong view of course of that, given my position on guns. Plus, the 5 Browns piano prodigy brothers and sisters -- wait until you hear their dark family secret and how they've overcome their past, to reach the brink of superstardom.
Well, we're getting (ph) now to our big story tonight, let's call it Cruz control. Listen to Senator Ted Cruz a little while ago. It's hard to believe it if you don't quite hear it for yourself. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CRUZ: I would credit my father. He invented -- this wasn't for the restaurant, but he did it anyway, he invented green eggs and ham. Some time ago, I tweeted a speech that Ashton Kutcher gave. Now number one just as a consumer, I'm a big fan of eating Whitecastle burgers. I do not like them Sam-I-Am. I do not like green eggs and ham.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: Dana Bash joins me now with the latest. Dana, one question really, amongst other things he may have been eating, can we include magic mushrooms?
DANA BASH, CHIEF CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I don't think so. I think actually I am pretty safe in saying that did not happen. But in all fairness, he is trying to buy time by doing things like reading his two young daughter's bedtime stories via CSPAN, which is why he read "Green Eggs and Ham," but he is spending a lot of time talking about the substance of ObamaCare and why he thinks its bad.
He is reading tweets from supporters, from his home state of Texas and from around the country. But, look, the bottom line is, Piers, this is, by many people's account here a fool's errand because he knows that this is basically a long speech. It's not technically, you know, a speech that will delay anything and so that's why a lot of people in his own party that this is just hurting the party, splitting the party, deluding their message and that's something I actually asked him about just yesterday.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BASH: Senator, what's your end game here? You knew from the start you were not going to be able to defund ObamaCare. Why put Congress through this?
CRUZ: But Dana actually, with respect I disagree with your premise. I believe we can and if we stand together we will defund ObamaCare. This was always a multi-step process.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BASH: And now, Piers the people who are supporting him, that applaud him, they say that this just shows he has determination. He is the only guy who's going to stand up to the big, bad Senate institution in Washington as usual. And of course those who can count and know that he doesn't have the votes thinks that -- they think that that just means he's delusional.
MORGAN: Yeah. I mean, look and even the senior members of your own party led by John McCain and others lambaste you as wasting everybody's time, doesn't it just park you into the delusion and ridiculous category?
BASH: Not if you're somebody like Ted Cruz who won his election last year in upset against in a "establishment" Republican in Texas and has made it his mission to rock the boat and not let go of this ObamaCare issue. And he really is doing this in terms of perhaps his own future ambition, maybe the White House and others.
And so it definitely is hurting him relationship wise, but you know what he never really had the greatest relationships anyway. It's not why he's here and you're absolutely right, Piers, we have seen people call him Republican -- fellow Republicans a fraud and worst and actually today he's not somebody who's known for his humor. He had a little bit of a job at them with a little bit of a joke. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CRUZ: This fight is not about personalities. Look, most Americans could not give a flying flip about (inaudible) -- what politicians in Washington, who cares? You know almost all of us are in cheap shoes with bad haircuts.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: He can be talking about himself kiddingly. Now Dana let's cut to it quickly ...
BASH: He said that not me.
MORGAN: Let's cut to it quickly here about ObamaCare because many people find it very complicated don't really understand ...
MORGAN: ... the issues. The viewers at home really trying to get to greet with what this latest debate is about. Crystallize it in simple terms for me.
BASH: Right. I mean, well the big thing right now is looking ahead to one week from today, October 1st, next Tuesday which is when the exchanges open in most states around the country. What that means is that this is going to the place where most people can go to purchase insurance. If they don't have it, maybe they'll do it through their employer. So that is really the first open enrollment as people hear in the US and know it with their employers.
The next big date is January 1st which is of two things. One is, that is the date where most people in this country will be required to have some kind of health insurance or pay a penalty for not having it, and that really is -- if people were watching Bill Clinton and President Obama try to explain the benefits of this, that really was one of the key things that we're hitting on today, Piers. And that this is -- in fact the President said, "This is the only industrialized country that doesn't have the kind of health care that it should." And so this will require that.
And then lastly, I think that will be most interesting to people and they should remember that on that day, January 1st insurance companies will be prohibited from dropping people or taking people because they have pre-existing conditions. So those are some of the things that people should look for and the kind of news you can use made (ph). But again, the flip side on what we're hearing and what we're seeing Ted Cruz say on the floor is that these are losing compositions, that they are making small businesses bleed money, that people are being dropped from their insurance companies and doctor's are retiring early and on and on and on.
And so there's very much a doomsday feeling from Ted Cruz he says voicing the concerns of his constituents in Texas and also from around the country. Democrats understand that there is a lot of concern. As you've said, there's confusion. It's not really clear. They're trying very hard at the White House and you're going to see the President do this this week to have an education campaign but they're not there yet.
MORGAN: Dana Bash, thank you very much indeed.
In other engagement, a little shutdown showdown of our own, it's Ben Ferguson on the right, Marc Lamont Hill on the left. So Ben Ferguson, let me tell you my head around this. The President has tried to bring in millions more Americans who wouldn't have qualified for health insurance into the health insurance game. What's wrong with that?
BEN FERGUSON, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: There's nothing wrong with that, but the problem is that ObamaCare try to fix the system for people that didn't need a fix, and it's too big, it's too costly.
The Congressional Budget Office has said it could be upwards of 80 percent more than we were told when it was passed. And the other issue is, look at Nancy Pelosi, one of the best things she said in her entire career was, "We won't know what's in it until we pass it." and after it was passed, she wasn't lying.
We found out a lot of things in this bill that are hurting small business, we even have hospitals like Vanderbilt Hospital who are laying off a thousand people because -- directly because of ObamaCare and that's a hospital. If a hospital's having to do that, there's a pretty good sign that this bill is not exactly that great for everyone and that's the point that he's making tonight I think on the floor of the Senate.
MORGAN: OK, Marc Lamont Hill, it's been a total disaster according to Ben Ferguson, your thoughts.
MARC LAMONT HILL, HOST HUFFPOST LIVE: Well, first of all, its way to early to decide if anything has been a disaster. We're just entering the implementation phase, there's no evidence that it's a disaster. We actually have to look at that, Ben, is pointing out outliers, you can put out an outlier like Vanderbilt Hospital say some people were fired, some people were laid off. But the truth is ...
FERGUSON: A thousand is not some.
HILL: Right, and millions is also not some, and there's millions of people who now be covered with pre-existing conditions, millions of people will be able to cover their children up to the age of -- beyond 25. Millions of people will have a much better standard of living, every other industrialized nation in the world except the United States. So I'd take those millions over those thousands, that's not to save (ph), Ben, I can see the point that there can be tweaks done to ObamaCare. The problem is people like Ted Cruz who are doing nothing but political theatre are doing nothing to advantage the Republicans who actually want to make tweaks ...
FERGUSON: Marc ...
MORGAN: Ben Ferguson it's almost worst than that. You could argue that what Cruz is doing is actually damaging his own party. What he's creating is that old splinter now between the old Tea Party and the body politic of Republican Party and that doesn't help anyone. It won't help you win that election.
FERGUSON: Well, let's look at the people that are saying that. One, John McCain, two, Lindsey Graham, three, you have other leaders like that and the point that I think Ted Cruz and many other conservatives like myself were saying is those guys have been failures over the last five years. John McCain hasn't had a single victory yet he's acting as if he's somehow leading on these issues. And the point is for most conservatives is we're not going to wait for you to die for us to start fighting again for conservative values. That's what Ted Cruz was elected on ...
HILL: But this isn't a fight for conservative values ...
MORGAN: OK, well ...
FERGUSON: Hold on, let me finish this. Let me finish. John McCain and Lindsey Graham have literally have zero victories in five years including when he ran for President, he got his brains beat in. So if that's the guy that's criticizing, I like my options over the right thing ...
MORGAN: OK, let's play -- let's play a clip here. This is from the CGI today where Bill Clinton, former President, interviewed Barrack Obama, the current President, about ObamaCare. Listen to what President Obama had to say.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: It's been a little political, this whole ObamaCare thing. And so what you've had is an unprecedented effort that you've seen ramp up over the last month or so in which those who have opposed the idea of universal health care in the first place and have fought this thing tooth and nail through Congress and through the courts and so forth are -- have been trying to scare and discourage people from getting a good deal.
(END OF VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: Marc Lamont Hill, that's what many people feel isn't it? This is just basically another attempt to get rid of President Obama using his stick to beat him. But actually, a lot of the people most suffering in America will benefit from ObamaCare indisputably. HILL: That's exactly right. This political stunt and Ted Cruz's negation will do nothing to help. Even the people who agree with Ted Cruz like Ben Ferguson, I mean, there's actually no benefit to this. There's no potential political victory in what Ted Cruz is doing. All he's doing is ...
FERGUSON: Then, why are you so nervous? Why are you fighting so hard if it's not a big deal? I mean ...
HILL: No, I didn't say it was -- hold on. Ben. Ben ...
FERGUSON: ... the President is having a defense call (ph) ...
HILL: Ben. Ben. Hold on. I wasn't there. I didn't say that.
FERGUSON: Well, Marc ...
HILL: No. Ben, let me finish saying what I'm saying before you disagree with it. I'm not saying that it's not a big deal. I think it's a huge deal that a member of Congress is wasting 30 hours reading "Green Eggs and Ham" when there are real problems in United States. I don't think however that it's a threat to ObamaCare, he doesn't have the votes. I don't think you'd be willing to say ...
FERGUSON: Marc, the hypocrisy ...
HILL: ... hang on. Ben, we're in national television. Will you say right now that, Ben, that Ted Cruz has the votes? Do you think it's at all possible that he has the votes to win this battle?
FERGUSON: Marc, I think that's funny the hypocrisy ...
HILL: Can you answer that question though?
FERGUSON: I'm going to answer it.
HILL: Could you answer that question though?
FERGUSON: I'm answering it right now. Listen to words coming out of my mouth. None of you, either of you criticize Democrats when they wasted time for weeks on end trying to get a gun bill pass that everyone knew was not going to pass. You said it was noble, it was right, it was just. And I knew instead that you're five different nights. They don't have the votes to get it pass ...
HILL: I'm glad you can see that it's a waste of time.
FERGUSON: ... but none of you all criticized that.
HILL: I'm glad you can see that it's a waste of time.
FERGUSON: But the thing is -- it's not a waste of time...
HILL: The point is ...
MORGAN: (inaudible) Ben, calm down. We're talking about ObamaCare which is primarily aimed to bring in millions of Americans into the health care (inaudible) who couldn't otherwise afford it. In terms of guns, you can hardly throw that as a good analogy. The fact that Congress spectacularly fails to listen to its own people where 90 percent of Americans wanted background checks and they still couldn't even pass that, that is not a comparative thing to bring into this debate.
FERGUSON: Piers, we'll get the number of Americans ...
MORGAN: You demean your argument when you do that.
FERGUSON: I'm not demeaning it. Piers the majority of Americans are not happy with ObamaCare, the way it was enacted. And the majority of Americans believe that it should be tweaked and changed if you look at the polls. If you look at ...
HILL: But Ted Cruz is advocating for tweaks and changes, Ben.
FERGUSON: ... the public opinion. Look at the public opinion.
HILL: Right. But if -- and if you look piece by piece at ObamaCare whether again it's pre-existing conditions, whether it's age limitations, people actually like the items in ObamaCare and Ted Cruz is now here fighting for tweaking, he's fighting to defund. And he's willing to destabilize the entire country to do it.
FERGUSON: Because -- And -- But there's a very important point. The reason why he's fighting to defund is because the Democrats including President Barrack Obama, he was out there today defending a bill -- let's not forget that's already been passed. That's how vulnerable it is. That's how many people aren't happy with it. The President still having to defend the bill that literally was passed a couple of years ago, a bill that Democrats would not mention in the last election because they were so afraid of being associated with ObamaCare. That's how vulnerable it is.
MORGAN: OK. We got it.
HILL: The bill is not vulnerable.
MORGAN: And that's -- we have to leave it there.
FERGUSON: Sure it is.
MORGAN: I'll make some firm predictions here, Ben Ferguson. We can discuss this next week.
MORGAN: One is that Ted Cruz will never stop talking. Secondly, he will not succeed. There will be no government shutdown. And thirdly, he will be the new Sarah Palin and the Tea Party will have emerged glorious again to take on its own party. Anyway, Ben Ferguson, Marc Lamont Hill, thank you both very much. Let's continue to rumble away.
Not to be undone, Hillary Clinton, took a shot at Republicans and that looming shutdown or probably non-shutdown today. Listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON: If they want to shut the government down, that's on their head and their responsibility. And if they go even further which is deeply distressing, and for the first time lead our country into default on our obligations, that is not just partisan politics, that is going at the heart of our credibility around the world not just our economic leadership but our political and strategic leadership.
So I hope that our friends on the other side of the aisle, and it's a minority, but it's a noisy minority understands this is not right to do and this is bad politics for them to do.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: Hillary Clinton today. And tomorrow, sit down with the man who was president during the shutdown of 1995 and 1996, Bill Clinton, it's an in-depth conversation with the 42nd president of United States tomorrow. And you can see more from Hillary Clinton on Sanjay Gupta MD this weekend.
Coming next, the new president of Iran says it's no threat to the world from his country with him. I'll ask Tony Blair if we should trust either.
Also, a seventh grader with pellet guns, do they deserve to be kicked out of school? I'll ask them and their parents. And later the 5 Browns, brothers sisters, classical music superstars and survivors with a very dark family secret.
MORGAN: And some Breaking News tonight. Iran's new elected president Hassan Rouhani said that this could be a new era for Iran and its relationships with the rest of the world, particularly America. Again, CNN's Christiane Amanpour direct message to the American people. Still a lot to go in English.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP
HASSAN ROUHANI, IRAN PRESIDENT: I would like to say to American people, I bring peace and friendship from Iranians ...
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: And joining me now is Tony Blair, the Middle East Quartet Representative and former British Prime Minister. Tony Blair, good to see you.
TONY BLAIR, FORMER BRTISH PRIME MINISTER, MIDDLE EAST QUARTET REPRESENTATIVE: Thanks, Piers.
MORGAN: Let's talk Iran of the top because clearly there is a move by the Iranians to be at least slightly more friendly on this trip than we used to with Ahmadinejad and so on. How much we've weighed into this? How serious do you think they are? Are we heading to a new relationship?
BLAIR: The honest answer is right now we don't know but it's worth testing. So the sanctions have definitely really harmed Iran. I mean their oil export is halved, inflation is doubled. They've lost probably in some estimates $100 billion which is a large amount for their economy as a result of the sanctions. So the sanction squeezes made an impact. And the Iranian election was not, obviously, an open election. But nonetheless, the election of President Rouhani was an indication that the people were also pushing the regime for some change.
So, you know, on the other hand, we got to do this with our eyes open and be cognizant of the fact that the last few years we have seen the onward march of the Iranian program. So, you know, I think it's very sensible to test it, but test it with the implicit stick in the background.
MORGAN: There's obviously a clear link between Iran and Syria. And many people believe a lot of Iranian resource and money is behind President Assad and what he's up to. Can you put that link into perspective for me?
We see what's happening in Syria. President Obama is taking a position now of not having any military act at the moment. You've written that you think there should've been military action. But in light of all that's been going on, is the President's position now the correct one going forward?
BLAIR: Yes, because again, I think it's right. And given the offer to yield up the chemical weapons that Syria has, if they're prepared to do that and it's done in a viable (ph) bases, then that is plainly better for the world security than to do a punitive attack that would still leave him with chemical weapons, so ...
MORGAN: Would you trust President Assad? And would you trust Vladimir Putin?
BLAIR: We should be extremely cautious again on the process of verification. So I think, whether it's with Iran or Syria, it's the results that count. I mean I'm not particularly interested in whether we did it elegantly or inelegantly, and, you know, there's a lot of talk about that, the style of how it was -- that to me is not relevant at all.
What is relevant is the substance. If Syria gives up its chemical weapons program, that's a plus. If Iran gave up its nuclear weapons ambition, that would be a huge thing for the region. However, we have to be mindful of the fact this is a regime, over 100,000 people are dying, millions displaced with act of total brutality. They were prepared to use chemical weapons. They're still engaged in what most people regard as a fiction and saying it wasn't them, it was really the rebels.
And, you know, the Iranian regime have been very, very clear in their nuclear weapons ambition for a long period of time. And for example, you have shortly the International Atomic Energy Agency will have a meeting in Vienna, and this recently, a couple of weeks ago, the Atomic Energy Agency said Iran were not fully cooperating. This will be an opportunity for them to demonstrate some cooperation.
MORGAN: In terms of the action that didn't happen against Syria, many people think that what happened in Britain with the British Parliament deciding to vote against it, actually persuaded President Obama that he couldn't go alone, can't go without the British, and that's why he did what he did, going to Congress. Perhaps knowing he was going to lose.
Had you been British Prime Minister, would you have pushed very hard to do military action at that time?
BLAIR: I would certainly push hard to be with America as an ally at this moment. And I think it's important that UK and the US stick together. I mean that's always been what I've fought.
Now, again, I think particularly after being through a long painful campaigns, Afghanistan, Iraq, it's natural that the politicians want the support of their parliamentary bodies and -- but the bottom line again is -- the account of the use of chemical weapons happening without some reaction.
Now, if we can -- if we manage to get the Syrians to give this up in a very viable (ph) process, fine. But if that doesn't happen, and that's why the Security Council Resolution is also important, if that doesn't happen, we got to be prepared to enforce the will of the international community.
MORGAN: There's a lot resting on trust, isn't there? And these aren't the most trustworthy people to deal. This is for -- I mean you got Vladimir Putin with his own obvious self interest. You've got President Assad with his self interest in that current civil war raging. And this may take years to actually unearth all these chemical weapons and have them delivered and so on.
It just seems to many people that America and Britain are the countries that have taken their decisions on this have shown weakness when they should've shown more strength.
Now, the only thing that I told you about this is because you've been on the receiving end of a lot of betrayal after Iraq, as it turned out Saddam didn't have the weapons that you thought he had. Here, Assad clearly does, and yet no action at the moment has been taken other than -- well, we trust you to hand them over.
BLAIR: Look, I think in relation to Syria, here's why I think people find difficult, both sides of the Atlantic. If you look at the Assad regime and the numbers of people they've killed, the way they're brutalizing their population and that is obviously something to be condemned. But then people look at the opposition forces, they see the increasing influence of jihadist groups and Al-Qaeda associated people, and then they say, "Well, you know, where are the good guys?" Now, personally, I think there are good guys out in the Middle East right now. They are the modern minded and moderate people. I believe whether it's in Egypt or in Syria or in Yemen, right over the region, you can see a solid, if disorganized, majority in favor of the types of things that we would want to see.
But right now, I think people understand in particular after Iraq and Afghanistan, you get involved in these situations and then you're involved with these extremist groups whether those sponsored by Iran or the one side or Al-Qaeda on the other, and then people worry. They would worry, "What are we getting into? Can we get out of it? What is the cost?"
Now, personally, I've taken this deal all the way through. I think there is one big battle going on. It is an ideological struggle between radical Islam and the more moderate and modern-minded people within Islam. I think it's relevant to the Middle East but not centered solely in the Middle East. And I think we have to take a side in it.
MORGAN: Well, we've seen exactly where it lay this week with the attack in Kenya.
MORGAN: Again, it was like an Al-Qaeda affiliate. Al-Shabaab has committed an appalling atrocity. And they would've been homegrown radicalized terrorist perhaps from America, perhaps from Britain. We don't know for sure yet but it's looking that way.
As we saw with the Boston bombing at the marathon as well, this kind of radicalization of younger homegrown terrorist may be the future. How do you deal with that? If you were world leader right now, how do you deal with that menace? Because you had a bit of these when you were the British Prime Minister.
BLAIR: Right. And it's the problem of course because that's the difficulty we got into in Afghanistan and Iraq. And the trouble with these people is they're prepared to fight without hesitation, kill without mercy, and die without regret. And what that means is, in any situation where they are involved, they're going to be tough to beat.
Now, mind you, you do have to beat them. And it's not just in Nairobi. Look at Pakistan, where all those Christians were slaughtered in that terrorist outrage. But I can point you examples. In Central Asia, in the Far East, across the whole of Sub Sahara and Africa, I mean this is a global phenomenon.
The way of dealing with it is partly through security measures but also it's one of the reasons I started a foundation I did about religious interfaith and respect of people -- between people of different faiths. You got to educate. We should be making a major part of our foreign policy now to say to countries, "We will educate our young people to a tolerant and respectful view of others. But you've got to do the same." And, you know, what is happening is these young people are being radicalized in formal education systems and informal education systems. And it's not abating this. It's actually growing and it's got the potential to destabilize large parts of the world because they're prepared to commit these atrocities.
MORGAN: Tony Blair, it was good to see you. Thank you very much.
BLAIR: Thanks, Piers.
MORGAN: Coming next, the school who throws the book, two seventh grade boys using an air gun on their front lawn. An air gun, has the school gone too far? Coming to speak, ______ boys join me feasibly. Coming up next.
MORGAN: Two boys from Virginia are suspended from middle school for the entire year it's all because the police say they were shooting an airsoft gun while waiting for the school bus. Khalid Caraballo and Aidan Clark both seventh graders said they were far from the bus and on private property. The School Board says, "This was a threat to student safety." Well, joining me now exclusively Solangel Caraballo and her son Khalid, Tim Clark and his son Aidan. So, welcome to all of you. Let's start with the two boys here, Khalid what were you were doing and describe what this gun is?
KHALID CARABALLO: It's an airsoft gun. It's made for shooting at a target and that's what we are doing. We are shooting at a target.
MORGAN: Is it a toy?
KHALID CARABALLO: Yes sir.
MORGAN: OK, Aidan it's definitely a toy, I mean I've never used one of these things but people don't have tell me they fire pellets but still classifies really as a toy.
AIDAN CLARK: Yes.
MORGAN: Do you think anything you were doing was wrong Aidan?
AIDAN CLARK: Well, yes but I don't think it has to do anything with school.
MORGAN: OK, what do you think you were doing that was wrong?
AIDAN CLARK: Well, we were shooting airsoft guns when we we're not supposed to do because our parents did not want us to.
MORGAN: OK, well let's bring in your parents Solangel Caraballo your son oversee (ph) -- got a very hefty punishment from the school here. Tell me first of all did you know that he had this toy gun and what is your view of it? SOLANGEL CARABALLO: Well, I purchased the gun but -- when I purchase the toy and I just purchased that and he wasn't supposed to be playing with it at that time. I've put it away and I -- he is in trouble with me and serious trouble with the school.
MORGAN: Do you have any problem intrinsically with him using that particular toy gun?
SOLANGEL CARABALLO: Oh no. No, it's a toy; it's actually a fun game.
MORGAN: OK, well let's bring in Tim Clark, your son oversee (ph) Aidan has also been heavily punished here, what is your view about what the school has done?
TIM CLARK: I'm just amazed that they feel that they're more suitable to discipline my child than I am. I feel like they feel they're better parent than I am.
MORGAN: Well it's not -- I don't think it's really that, they said in the statement, this is from Matthew Delaney, he's a Principal of Larkspur Middle School he says, "Other children were involved." He said, "Several students verified they've been hit by pellets and had the marks to support their claims. In one instance, a child was just 10 feet from the bus stop and ran from the shots being fired but was still hit. Another student claimed to be shot in the back while running away during a previous incident. This child was also shot in the arm and head during Thursday's incident."
Now, if any of these kids as far as you're aware Mr. Clark did any of them complain to the school about what happened?
TIM CLARK: No, they did not. They made a plan to show up at the house with the sole intention of all playing the game of chasing each around with it. Every single one of the boys was hit at one time or another and they thought it was a game and thought it was all right because they weren't on school property or on school time.
MORGAN: Now, Solangel Caraballo what the school also said, this is a statement released by Daniel Edwards he's the Chairman of the School Board of Virginia Beach, he says, "This wasn't Khalid's first infraction." He said, "Because you signed a waiver and chose to make this public conversation, we can share this is not Khalid Caraballo's first disciplinary infraction, he has been disciplined six times in less than 18 months for increasingly aggressive behavior including harassment, bullying and fighting that resulted in injuries."
Now, were you aware of all those incidents Mrs. Caraballo and what is your reaction to the school making that public?
SOLANGEL CARABALLO: Oh, I'm -- I never signed a waiver for them to go public. I -- I'm just appalled that they enforce bullying and here they are attacking my son. I couldn't even believe when I got the same letter I -- that's actually it's we, I mean they went -- I never signed anything that they could release to the public, I never -- I'm aware that my son has had some incidences, but that doesn't mean he deserves this harsh punishment, he doesn't -- he deserves to go to school, he doesn't deserve to go to another school besides his own school.
MORGAN: OK, Khalid I mean, apparently six times in 18 months you've been in trouble at school for they say harassment, bullying, and fighting. Have you've been a naughty boy?
KHALID CARABALLO: I mean I don't know how you feel about being a naughty boy, but I don't -- I do know that I have been in trouble in recent times.
MORGAN: And why is that do you think?
KHALID CARABALLO: Because I have a little bit of a temper.
MORGAN: And are you working to trying to deal with that?
KHALID CARABALLO: Yes sir.
MORGAN: OK, Aidan are you working to deal with your -- I don't know what your problem is, you don't seem to have the same disciplinary record, have you've been naughty as well or not?
AIDAN CLARK: Yes.
MORGAN: So, you probably is that you really gone too far, right?
AIDAN CLARK: Yes.
MORGAN: So, you're both going to be better boys and hope to get back to school as soon as possible?
AIDAN CLARK: Yes.
MORGAN: Well, good. Look here's my idea about this because I've had quite a strong view about guns in America and gun control as most people who actually showing now, but in this case I can't help thinking the school is going a bit too far, this is a toy gun and this is not the same thing, you know, when I was a kid I use to play with toy guns, cap guns, and whatever. And, you know, they can't kill people.
And so, I think you both being pretty harshly treated and the school should rethink this. I think Khalid you need to get your own behavioral pattern into a better order, but I think that they've gone a little bit far on this case and I think you should go back to the school and try and ask some common sense into this debate because kids in the end in America should be allowed to be kids.
SOLANGEL CARABALLO: Yes, that sure.
MORGAN: And that the gun control campaign that I've run does not extend itself to harmless pellet toy gun. So, thank you for joining me and good luck in getting back to school.
KHALID CARABALLO: Thanks. SOLANGEL CARABALLO: Thank you.
MORGAN: Coming next a bit like picture perfect performers but the years they harbored a dark family secret. Tonight classical musicians the 5 Browns speak out about why they expose their own father as their abuser.
MORGAN: Oprah told The 5 Browns extraordinary. (inaudible) called them one of the most successful classical music acts on the planet. They're about to release their sixth album "The Rite of Spring" it already hit number one on the classical charts three times but behind the scenes it has some pretty private pain.
In the Chair tonight The 5 Browns, Ryan, Deondra, Desirae, Melody and Gregory. And beautifully you're in that order so I can try and remember. So I will do my very best to. So, OK who's the boss of the five of you? * DESIRAE BROWN, THE 5 BROWNS: No, nobody is the boss. We're very democratic. I don't think we'd allow anyone to be the boss.
MORGAN: OK, is that right?
MELODY BROWN, THE 5 BROWNS: Yes, we -- actually when we have musical disagreements, we usually will take a vote and luckily there's an odd number of us because usually majority wins.
MORGAN: Now you're all brilliantly talented. All right and when I -- to judge the America's Got Talent, they had a (inaudible) day with some lot of acts from Utah and then it was very talented and always use to smile a lot like you guys and so this -- to put me off because it can be too critically delighting too much.
But in terms of who's the most talented. I always love this question among siblings because I can see you're already looking at me grimacing, right? I want to hear from you Gregory, who is the most talented? If you all went head to head on America's got Talent, who would win?
GREGORY BROWN, THE 5 BROWNS: Yeah, OK, so it's funny because people come unto us after concerts and every night it's always different. People say, I like you the best. I like you the best. We always have the same training basically our whole lives so it's really hard to tell we play differently but ...
MORGAN: Deondra is shaking her head. You don't agree with him at all didn't you? Are the girls better than the boys?
DEONDRA BROWN, THE 5 BROWNS: No, I don't think.
MORGAN: I'm just kidding.
DEONDRA BROWN: Are the girls better than the boys? Oh, I don't know. I don't think so. I mean some nights I feel like maybe they're better than me but that's the nice thing about it is they inspire me to try to be better and to ...
MORGAN: See all my brothers inspire me to do is beat them, end of it. I don't care if its monopoly or whatever it is.
DESIRAE BROWN: (inaudible) to start it on board game.
MELODY BROWN: Yes, board game that's usually the good thing.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sports too.
MORGAN: And who's the most competitive?
MELODY BROWN: Gregory is pretty competitive, yeah.
DESIRAE BROWN: In board game.
MELODY BROWN: You know in sports and stuff but outside of that.
MORGAN: Now that you're hugely popular, you know, incredibly successful and everything was going great and then you got hit by this awful tragedy that must have blighted your lives certainly for quite awhile. So Desirae talk me through what happened with your father because it turned out that he had been abusing all three of the girls here, his daughters. An awful thing about the worst thing that you could possibly imagine, the moment that you all realized what have been going on, how did you deal with it as siblings?
DESIRAE BROWN: Well, you know, the moment I realized that my sisters have been abused and it wasn't just me, it was probably the worst moment of my life. I remember feeling sick to my stomach and I just -- so -- but at the same time there was like a camaraderie on us like we understood each other like a kinship there that we could get through this together.
MORGAN: Melody, incredibly painful to be abused full stop (ph) to have it being done by your father, somebody who had been managing you as a group, the worst imaginable thing I would imagine for you. How have you coped with the fact? He is now in prison? And that horrible chapter in your lives is closed for that. How do you feel about it?
MELODY BROWN: You know time is so important and, you know, that I've had a couple of years now to sort of deal with it all and process it. We've been through counseling as a family and I just feel like finally I'm able to heal with that time and, you know, my sisters have chosen to start a foundation and that's empowering for them. But for me, I've chosen to kind of just live my own life and heal in my own time and be with my husband out in nature and -- those are the things that heal me.
MORGAN: Deondra, what are your feelings towards your father?
DEONDRA BROWN: Well, I mean, obviously, you know, that they are your parents. So there's -- you're still going to love them through a certain extent. But, it's difficult over the years because based of the decisions that he made, it directly influences the rest of your life and there are forever consequences to the decisions that he made. So I choose to try to focus on my life, my husband, my daughter, and the happy things, playing music together as brothers and sisters, touring the world, those are the things that make me happy.
MORGAN: You have -- do any of you have any contact with him at all?
DEONDRA BROWN: No.
RYAN BROWN: No.
GREGORY BROWN: No.
MORGAN: None of you. What about your mother? And let me bring one of the boys in, Ryan (inaudible) talk to you to -- how do you feel about your mother, how did she feel about what happened to your father?
RYAN BROWN: I have minimal contact with my mom just to check up on her.
MORGAN: Is that the same to all of you?
MELODY BROWN: It's just sort of disappointing that she hasn't really felt -- it's been -- she hasn't been terribly supportive of us and that's disappointing to us.
MORGAN: I mean, heartbreaking, right? I mean, you guys were totally oblivious to what was going on. But in the same weight, it's been equally harrowing for you, this is your father who was abusing your sisters, he was your manager of the group, your mother, you clearly, you know, how to -- a pretty poor relationship with her (ph) to it. It could have wrecked many families. Amazingly you guys have each other and have managed to come through this. But, do you feel you can have a reconcile with your mother or your father properly?
GREGORY BROWN: It's hard to say, you know, I mean, they're -- I think when it comes to like forgiveness and relationships, it's a personal thing for each of us. And definitely time plays a factor in that. But, you know, I mean, like Ryan said, I just -- I'm in some contact with my mother. I'm pretty disappointed in a lot of the decisions she has made and -- recently. But, yeah, I guess time will tell, time will -- only time can tell whether if they are willing to, you know, come to us and you know, really make an effort, who knows, but I ...
MORGAN: Have they ever apologized to you?
DESIRAE BROWN: I think you feel when somebody is truly penitent. There are the times where if you apologize once within your actions speak totally different language than it's not a genuine apology. I think genuine penitent and restitution, we would be able to really feel and we're open to that, it's just haven't been shown yet.
MORGAN: Let's take a break. Let's come back and talk about happier things which I'm sure you'd love to do. Your brilliant new album which you all sign for me so it makes easy to remember who you are. And let's talk about that and music and why you love it so much. How about that?
GREGORY BROWN: Sounds good.
DEONDRA BROWN: That's great.
MORGAN: You like that.
MORGAN: The 5 Browns doing what they do best and they're back with me now. Let's just talk about music. You got this great concert coming up at Carnegie Hall which is the ultimate for any pianist around the world really, and there you are the five of you, you've never played there before. How exciting is this concert? Let's talk about Carnegie Hall, Deondra?
DEONDRA BROWN: It's amazing after everything that we've been through especially over the last couple of years to be able to live our dream and perform in Carnegie Hall, we have a new album that's coming out that was a dream project that we've wanted to do our whole performing lives. And so it's kind of exciting to see all these that we've hoped to come true.
MORGAN: Yeah and Ryan, I mean how much has it been a healing thing for you as a group of five siblings, what do you say?
RYAN BROWN: That music is a healing for all of us I think and individually and as a group. And just every -- after every single concert, I feel like I've grown closer to my siblings, you know, and we're all really good friends too, we get along, we have a great time on the road, and it's just a blast playing with them on stage.
MORGAN: Well, what happens if in the middle of Carnegie Hall someone has a really bum night? Like really, really terrible.
MELODY BROWN: That exactly ...
MORGAN: Melody, what happened? I mean is it like a terrible inquest archers (ph) or ...
MELODY BROWN: We get what we call this the crustiest from Deondra. And she's like, "What are you doing?" But then one night actually I got a smile from her, I must have done something really horrible.
MELODY BROWN: And she gave me a smile.
MORGAN: (inaudible) giving me one all night. So this must a rare thing. Desirae, the power of faith, you're all very God-fearing and religious as I'd expect coming from Utah and your Mormons obviously. How important is that be? I'm joined with Rick Warren last week I was incredibly moved by the power of his prayer and his faith to what have happened in his life. Has that been equally helpful to you guys?
DESIRAE BROWN: Oh, it's been hugely -- our faith has been so important us. I feel like our faith in spirituality bonds us almost even more than the music and especially through the trials that we've been through to know that there's always somewhere to find peace and hope which is so important when you go through this really difficult times. To be able to feel that has been very uplifting to us.
MORGAN: And tell me quickly about the foundation that you two set this up, right?
DEONDRA BROWN: The Foundation for Survivors of Abuse was set up Desirae and I and we -- it's important to us that people have the timeline to be able to heal when they're ready and with the laws and statutes of limitations on how they are, sometimes that is not the case.
And so for us, we're trying to raise awareness about the issue of sexual abuse and hopefully our plan is to make it to Washington and to start lobbying on behalf of victims everywhere who come up against the stature of limitation.
MORGAN: Good. Well, good for you. The 5 Browns will be performing at Carnegie Hall on October 18th you can download their new album. Here it is, the "Rite of Spring" starting October 1st and cracking up, you are very talented I have to say, and the CD is available on October 29th. For more information on the foundation check out survivingabuse.org.
Thank you so much all of you. Please come again, and best of luck at Carnegie Hall.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Thank you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you.
MORGAN: We'll be right back with Bono's possibly greatest ever live performance.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BONO: Hey (inaudible) too at the Oval Office, and I actually I thought it was a member of his own road crew. It wasn't really interested (ph) but actually I felt like the rock star in that occasion.
(END OF VIDEO CLIP)
MORGAN: Bono spot an impression of Bill Clinton in the Clinton Global Initiative. Tomorrow we get the real thing, my exclusive interview with the 42nd President of United States which we'll be looming (ph) government shutdown, President Obama's rocky second term and the bitter partisan fighting in Washington. And also swirling rumors about another campaign his wife, Hillary Clinton and the next generation will be on the show to, daughter Chelsea joins me on Thursday night. That's all for us tonight. AC 360 Later starts right now.