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Obamacare Explained at Your Door; A-Rod Prepares for Appeal; U.S., Iran Easing Tensions; Cheerleader Told She's a Liability

Aired September 27, 2013 - 11:30   ET


DANNY CEVALLOS, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: First, if you're talking about insanity, I think that's a tough call because it's not that the actual defendant doesn't know something is right or wrong. If he's aware that society knows it's wrong, then he's not going to be able to claim insanity. If you just look from that little verse right there, he seems pretty aware or has been told at least that what's going on is not cool.

ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: All right, Danny Cevallos and Laurie Segall, thank you both for that. I'm going to be fascinated to see how this case shakes out or if more charges end up coming into the pipeline.

By the way, you also want to watch "New Day" tomorrow morning. Miss Teen USA will join us live Saturday morning right here on CNN.

Also coming up next, relaxing the relations between the United States and Iran. Are you feeling it? Warm and fuzzy, as the two countries agree that there are new possibilities on the table. What that diplomatic speak actually means and if this truly is a decades-old ice breaker.


BANFIELD: Knock, knock. Who's there? Obamacare. And I'm not kidding. In fact, there are people coming to a front door near you to explain what this brand new law is all about.

CNN's Zain Asher went along on the sidewalk. Have a look.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We'll go up the hill and around. But we'll start at the top of the hill.

ZAIN ASHER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): With just a few days to go before the new health insurance exchanges go live, an army of Obamacare experts are going door to door --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Good morning. Is Christopher home?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We're not selling anything.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Do you currently have insurance?

ASHER: -- Trying to explain Obamacare to Americans who don't have health insurance.

MAHER HAMOUI, UNAWARE OF OBAMACARE: It has something to do with caring about people, Obamacare. Basically, that's all I know.

ASHER: According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, 43 percent of all uninsured Americans still have no idea about the new exchanges.

JOSE MENENDEZ, UNAWARE OF OBAMACARE: I have a question. Who created this affordable health care plan?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This was passed by Congress.

MENENDEZ: Oh, Congress.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes. The Affordable Care Act. Yes.

MENENDEZ: And I'm just wondering, as a citizen of America, how come I did not hear of this?

ASHER: While health care reform is a frequent source of contention in Congress, many of the people we spoke to here in North Bergen, New Jersey, were hearing details of Obamacare for the very first time just this week.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm definitely going to read into it.

MENENDEZ: Is Obama forcing Americans to get health insurance? It sounds that way.

ASHER: Enroll America, a nonprofit group funded mainly by insurance companies, health care groups and charities, is working to spread the word, dispatching 130 field workers in 10 states.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We can follow up with you.

ASHER: On October 1st, 48 million uninsured Americans will be able to purchase health coverage through federal and state exchanges. Coverage starts January 1st and they must enroll before March 31st.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATE: They are going to be able to shop just like you shop for an airline ticket or a flat-screen TV, and see what's the best price for you.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is all new to me. I never knew about any of this.

ASHER (on camera): Whether you know about it or not, it is still the law of the land. If you don't sign up in the next six months, you may face a penalty of $95 or 1 percent of your household income.

Zain Asher, CNN, New York.


BANFIELD: Thank you, Zain. We also want to hear about your Obamacare stories. If you're getting health insurance for the very first time or even if you're not, if you decided opting out and going for the penalty, we want to hear that. Send your videos to CNN iReport. We will air them in the days and weeks ahead.

You have heard of A-Rod, Alex Rodriguez. Star New York Yankee, suspended for 211 games because of the allegations over steroid use. Well, now he says I am not going down without a fight. It's going to be in a courtroom. The star witness may just end up a canary. That's next.


BANFIELD: So if you're a fan of "Monday Night Football", not anymore. Because I think what you're really going to enjoy is Monday afternoon baseball. That's when A-Rod and his high-powered legal team are going to go head-to-head with Major League Baseball and it is going to be epic, over $100 million worth of money at stake, 211 games on the field are at stake. You can imagine there will be no love lost in that room.

Here's Jason Carroll.


JASON CARROLL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Alex Rodriguez says he has something to prove, and not just on the field. His 211 game suspension, baseball's longest doping punishment, still very much in play, still a sore spot with fans.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Suspend him? I say fire him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I believe he should not be suspended.

ALEX RODRIGUEZ, NEW YORK YANKEES: The last seven months has been a nightmare.

CARROLL: Arbitrator Frederick Horowitz will hear both sides.


CARROLL: Rodriguez claims Major League Baseball used unethical practices to target him because he was overpaid and underperformed, and Major League Baseball's claim Rodriguez took PEDs, performance- enhancing drugs, including testosterone and human growth hormone.

MLB's case centers on this man, Anthony Bosch, founder of the now defunct anti-aging clinic, Biogenesis. Is Bosch prepared to testify Monday that he gave Rodriguez PEDs? If so, it would be a different account of what he told ESPN last April.

ANTHONY BOSCH, FOUNDER, BIOGENESIS: I'm a nutritionist. I don't know anything about performance-enhancing drugs.

CARROLL: That was then. One of Bosch's former friends, Bobby Miller, suspects why Bosch may have now changed his story.

BOBBY MILLER, FORMER FRIEND OF BOSCH: Told me they paid him $5 million. They paid him.

CARROLL: Who's they?

MILLER: Major League Baseball.

CARROLL: Bosch's spokeswoman says he is cooperating with Major League Baseball but is not being compensated by the organization. MLB would not comment.

Bosch has not spoken to the press since that interview last April.


CARROLL: We tried tracking Bosch down at a hotel in Coconut Grove, Miami.

(on camera): (INAUDIBLE).

(voice-over): No luck approaching a car connected to him, either.

(on camera): Can we have any sort of comment at all from Mr. Bosch?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can I help you, sir?

CARROLL: Yes, we're just from CNN.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is private property.

CARROLL (voice-over): Bosch's spokeswoman says, "He looks forward to testifying at arbitration."

Rodriguez, in a fight to save his legacy.

STEVE EDER, NEW YORK TIMES: It's a big moment for baseball. It's a big moment for Alex Rodriguez, for Yankees fans, and you know, there will be a lot of anticipation on what the arbitrator ultimately decides.

CARROLL: A high-stakes game, the reputation of one of baseball's greatest hanging in the balance.


BANFIELD: Jason Carroll joins me live from Miami.

Listen, Jason, if Bosch decides to speak and he does spill a bunch of baseballs, what is that going to mean? Will that be the linchpin or does he have enough of his own baggage that that doesn't really add anything?

CARROLL: I think it very well could be. If you listen to what MLB is saying, they're saying in addition to Bosch they have documents, e- mails, phone records, things of that nature, linking they say Rodriguez to this anti-aging clinic, linking Rodriguez to Bosch. In addition to that, they also have Bosch and you listen to what his spokeswoman is saying that despite what he said in April that he is fully willing to cooperate now, translation, whatever he said in April does not apply to what he's going to be telling the arbitrator on Monday.

BANFIELD: Be a great day or a horrible day, one of both.

Anyway, Jason, thank you. Appreciate the live reporting from Miami.

On Tuesday, Iran's president spoke to the American audience, in English, offering peace and friendship. Today, he's speaking and now he's actually talking about a nuclear deal. Could this really be right around the corner? Is all unfolding live right now? Going to bring you up to speed after the break.


BANFIELD: It is often said that actions speak louder than words. So when the nation listened when the Iranian president wished us peace and friendship, I'm sure a lot of people said the nicest friendship we could have is a nuclear deal. Possibly, that actually may be around the corner.

Nick Paton-Walsh joins me live from the United Nations.

What is being forged today, or is that too strong, the language, "forged"?

NICK PATON-WALSH, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, at this point, nothing's really being forged. What has been forged is a remarkable atmosphere of positivity. Hassan Rouhani, the newly elected Iranian president, is giving a press conference, and is still talking now, in fact, in which he hasn't given much away in terms of technical details of what Iran is willing to do to improve that it wants to give up evidence of its nuclear program that could let it have a nuclear weapon, but he's talked about how his visit has been remarkably successful. That press conference is ending now.

Let's hear exactly what he had to say a few moments ago.


HASSAN ROUHANI, IRANIAN PRESIDENT (through translation): -- on both sides and I assure you that, on the Iranian side, this is fully 100 percent that within a very short period of time, there will be a settlement on the nuclear front.


PATON-WALSH: He also talked about why wasn't there that long- anticipated handshake or meeting between him and Barack Obama, saying, look, we wanted it, the Americans wanted it, but we didn't really have enough time to ensure that the correct results would come from that meeting. He talked about how, what we saw yesterday, the historic first high- level meeting in 34 years between Iran and U.S. secretary of states or equivalents. That that was a great sign and would, if continued properly and the outcome is posited correctly, could lead to an even higher-level meeting at some point in the future.

But really, this press conference echoing and gushing the same positivity we've seen in all his appearances in Western media for the past week. Short, though, on the details people are listening for him to say about what he's willing to do practically to actually bring this to a head. We have heard him say through the "Washington Post" he could do a nuclear deal within three to six months. That was adjusted more practically yesterday to about a year by most officials speaking.

So there is definitely a clock ticking here. The only thing I could say that constituted a real kind of news line out of this press conference was he did say he would attend the Geneva 2 Peace Conference on Syria to try to get a deal for that civil war there, if he was invited. But I should point out, you can't go to Geneva unless you agree that the Assad regime must step aside -- Ashleigh?

BANFIELD: Nick Paton-Walsh, live for us at the U.N. Keep tabs on that if you will. Thank you for that.

Coming up after the break, I don't know if you know who Britney Davilla is, but she is one adorable cheerleader. She has Down's syndrome but that has not stopped her for three years from being with this team as an honorary member, cheering on the sidelines and doing a pretty good job, too. Take a look at the pictures. All of a sudden, she shows up at practice, there's a new coach and he says, you're a liability, off to the stands you go. What is going on in Texas? We'll answer that in a moment.


BANFIELD: From the "Justice Files," that little girl is one heck of a cheerleader. Look at her go. She's 16. Her name's Britney. She's been cheering for three years. She's darn good. And now she's not allowed to. And that's that. She was sent to the stands and told she was a liability. But the school won't say, at least publicly, why, why she's a liability or why any more than anybody else.

I want to bring in our legal analysts on this, Danny Cevallos and Jeff Gold.

Jeff, let me start with you.

Why? It's a very good question. Why is she more of a liability than anybody else?

JEFF GOLD, DEFENSE ATTORNEY & CNN LEGAL ANALYST: There's a whole question of the ADA here. They have to strike a balance.


BANFIELD: Americans with Disabilities Act.

GOLD: That's right. They have to strike some kind of a balance because, after all, she is disabled, but she has a right to participate. They're going to do some kind of a deal, some kind of an agreement that allows her to participate but, at the same time, maybe keeps her away from the stunts, things that might it be more dangerous for her. They have to consider that, but at the same time, they have to let her participate if she can.

BANFIELD: Understandably, Danny, the federal guidelines don't allow that school district to tell us, publicly, all of these very private details and issues as to why they did what they did. I think that's fair.

CEVALLOS: Well, yes, but one of the things we're focusing on, too, is the Americans with Disabilities Act. Even before that, this is really an issue of school liability. When student athletes sign on to play, irrespective even of their disabilities, she was already on the team. The school's concern is she may get hurt. Number one, most people who attend an athletic event assume the risk they may be hit with a ball or something else. Number two, as a high school athlete, it I sign my life away on waivers. I don't see why her parents can't do the same for her. I think the school has gotten itself into a bit of a pickle on this case.

BANFIELD: All right, guys, thank you for that. We're going to continue to watch this. The school district did say there's a lot of rumors around that aren't true. She is still an honorary member and they have meet. A deal is in the works. We'll continue to update you, tell you what's happening there.

For any of you who think taking your kids to a homeless shelter to show them what's going on in this world may be a fool's errand, may not have any effect, you're about to meet a young man who will disabuse you of all of that, right after the break.


BANFIELD: When Nick Lowinger was 5 years old, his mom took him to a homeless shelter. A lot of us do that, right? We want our kids to learn. And, boy, did he learn. He's our "CNN Hero." Have a look.


NICOLAS LOWINGER, CNN HERO: September is back to school, and for most kids, that means back to school shopping.

UNIDENTIFIED BOY: Can I try it on?

LOWINGER: I used to take those things for granted until I realized there were a lot of kids who didn't have those luxuries.

I remember my first shelter visit, seeing kids who were just like me. The only difference being they had footwear that was falling apart.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was nervous to go back to school. My shoes were old and too small for me.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When I lost my job, I had to decide either to spend money on the shoes or medicine or diapers.

LOWINGER: Kids get blisters on their feet because they have to wear whatever shoes they can get. It just wasn't right.

My name is Nicolas Lowinger. I'm 15, and I give new shoes to kids living in homeless shelters across the country.

My family's garage is filled to the brim with boxes full of new shoes. Shelters send us orders with the kid's name, gender, shoe size. I've donated new sneakers to over 10,000 kids in 21 states.


LOWINGER: Homeless children shouldn't have to worry about how they'll be accepted or how they'll fit in.




LOWINGER: It's more than just giving them a new pair of shoes.


LOWINGER: I'm helping kids be kids. Their self-esteem goes up. Their whole attitude on life changes. That's really what makes it so special for me.


BANFIELD: Nick, two words, rock star.

Thanks for watching, everyone. AROUND THE WORLD starts right now.

SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN ANCHOR: A shoot-out at a Kenya Mall was more calculated than originally thought. Kenyan intelligence say the terrorists rented a shop inside that mall a year ago.

MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN ANCHOR: And a blockbuster report on climate change. This is a big one. Waters and temperatures are rising. And scientists say, who's to blame? Look in the mirror.