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The Shutdown Begins; Lady Liberty's Lights Dimmed; Motorcycle Road Rage

Aired October 1, 2013 - 04:30   ET



SEN. HARRY REID (D-NV), MAJORITY LEADER: It is embarrassing that these people who are elected to represent the country are representing the Tea Party, the anarchists of the country, that the majority of Republicans of the House are following every step of the way.

REP. JOHN BOEHNER (R-OH), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: The House has voted to keep the government open, but we also want basic fairness for all Americans under Obamacare.

REPORTER: What do you say to those workers, sir?


JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: The government closed for business and shutdown. How it happened, why it happened and what it means for you. We have it all coming up.

ZORAIDA SAMBOLIN, CNN ANCHOR: A terror plot shutting down dozens of U.S. embassies and consulates. But now, intelligence officers worry the information that got out could have tipped off the enemy.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: After they got him out of his car, they beat him up.


BERMAN: This is road rage like you have never seen it before -- awful violence on the streets of New York. A family with a 2-year-old child chased and attacked by a gang of people on bikes, motorcycles -- I'm talking about here and it is all caught on camera.

SAMBOLIN: Oh my goodness.

BERMAN: This is crazy!

SAMBOLIN: What is our world coming to?

BERMAN: Good morning, everyone, on that note. Welcome to EARLY START, everyone. I'm John Berman.

SAMBOLIN: I'm Zoraida Sambolin. Thirty-one minutes past the hour. The word of the day in Washington is "closed". The federal government is shutting its door now that Congress has been unable to reach a deal to keep it running.

And now, the government has been shutdown for, let's say, 4 1/2 hours. Keep an eye on that clock right there on the right hand side. That's ticking as we are on the air and there is an impasse here.

Joe Johns is live in Washington with us this morning.

And, Joe, we haven't seen this in 17 years. You've been up, I believe, about 24 hours following it all for us.

So, give us a little synopsis of what happened.

JOE JOHNS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You know, hope springs eternal that this will not take too long to resolve, but it could. The House and Senate and the White House could not agree on a spending proposal to keep the government operating because a faction of Republicans in the House want to undermine President Obama's health care law.

This back and forth on Capitol Hill went slightly past midnight to about 1:00 a.m., ended with the House approving a request to seek a negotiation with the Senate over the issue. The Senate expected back in session, around 9:30 Eastern Time today, likely to table that request or kill it, which will put the government right back where we got started -- a standoff between the president of the United States and the speaker of the House who is standing up for the rank and file in his caucus and that is a lot of folks who don't like the Obamacare.



BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Unfortunately, Congress has not fulfilled its responsibility. It's failed to pass a budget. And, as a result, much of our government must now shut down until Congress funds it again.

BOEHNER: The House has made its position known very clearly. We believe that we should fund the government and we think there ought to be basic fairness for all Americans under Obamacare. The Senate has continued to reject our offers. Under the Constitution, there is a way to resolve this process and that is to go to conference and talk through your differences.


SAMBOLIN: And now, Joe, we have some good news, don't we? And it is that the military will now get paid. But, unfortunately, some folks are upset because Congress is getting paid as well.

JOHNS: Yes, that is just the way it works. The military will get paid. The House and Senate passed that bill to make sure they got paid each if there was a shutdown. The president signed that, even tape recorded a video message to the military after that. A lot of federal workers will report today. There are about 1.3 million so-called essential employees and 1.4 million active service military all who will actually still have to work, Zoraida.

SAMBOLIN: So, as we are looking at that clock there, 4 hours, 34 minutes, now, 30 seconds, this is all about politics. When will they get back together? Will they be able to, you know, come to some sort of a deal here, especially with all of the infighting that is happening amongst the Republicans?

JOHNS: Sure. This is a manufactured emergency. They have the ability to come together at any time and figure it out. In fact, they could reach a short-term solution. That's not unheard of, that would fund the government while they negotiate, but frankly the last time there was a shutdown, this went on for days and days. So, anybody's guess, Zoraida.

SAMBOLIN: In the meantime, this is costing a lot of money.

Joe Johns, reporting for us live in Washington, thank you very much.

BERMAN: You know, a lot of money indeed. You know, our national parks bring in $450,000 every day. That's when they are open. Now they are shutdown. Closed. So that number drops to zero.

From sea to shining sea, every last national park will now be shuttered. It is a tremendous loss, not just in money but also in the chance to share really our incidents of American glory. Yellowstone closed. Even Liberty Island.

Here is Poppy Harlow.


POPPY HARLOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Liberty Island was slammed by Superstorm Sandy, closed for eight months. Now another shutdown.

(on camera): What does it mean for you to visit the Statue of Liberty?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Freedom, liberty. That's why I'm in American. So to hear that the government is shutting down, it's like, what have we come to?

HARLOW (voice-over): Stacy Garcia (ph) is among the last visitors to the island.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Welcome aboard, Statue Cruises Lady Liberty.

HARLOW (on camera): So, along with the government comes the closure of all the nation's national parks and that include Lady Liberty. So, for folks coming to New York to see the iconic statue of Liberty, this maybe their last chance, and who knows how long.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's going to be awful. It's also going to damage the economy in ways that nobody has bothered to calculate yet. It's just mindless.

HARLOW (voice-over): With more than 280 million visitors a year from Yellowstone to Yosemite, to the Grand Canyon, more than 400 national parks are now closed.

RICHARD SIEGERT, TOURIST FROM INDIANA: I'm not going to let Congress, you know, make me miss the Statue of Liberty, which is so important to me as a retired history teacher.

HARLOW: Tourists turned away. More than 21,000 national parks employees furloughed and thousands more like cleanup crews and concession stands workers all left without jobs.

VICTORIA DUNCAN, EMPLOYEE ON LIBERTY ISLAND: I have to find another job if, like, they are not paying us while we are laid off or file for unemployment but it's still not going to be enough. It's hard. Even to think about it is hard to think about.

HARLOW: Quinn Agard says he needs this job just to get by and he doesn't have a plan B.

(on camera): Do you have a message for Washington?

QUINN AGARD, EMPLOYEE ON LIBERTY ISLAND: Things like that could have a big impact on the people that aren't in the limelight, you know, the people who work in hourly positions and spots. This whole island will be shutdown. So, that's a ton of different positions that people won't be working and won't be getting paid for.

HARLOW (voice-over): Liberty Island sees up to 4 million visitors a year, 20,000 a day in peak season at $17 per ticket per adults, that's big money.

DAVE LUCHINGER, STATUE OF LIBERTY SUPERINTENDENT: Even more than the money, it's the fact that there are folks that, you know, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity for a lot of folks.

HARLOW: An opportunity that means a lot for so many like Stacy Garcia.

Poppy Harlow, CNN, New York.


SAMBOLIN: Our thanks to Poppy.

Meantime in Colorado, the worst news possible. About five hikers missing after a massive rock slide, all five are dead. Authorities say the rock wall on a hiking train near Mt. Princeton, southwest of Denver, gave way Monday morning. The hikers were apparently hit by those rocks, killing them as they made their way past a scenic waterfall.


UNDERSHERIFF JOHN SPEZZEE, CHAFFEE COUNTY, CO: It looks like there was a cliff bank above the falls and it looks like it slid off of that cliff area above the falls, slid down through the fall areas.

SHERIFF PETER PALMER, CHAFFEE COUNTY, CO: We are at a bit of a loss right now just exactly how we are going to move those boulders.

SPEZZEE: We are going in there with a smallest team possible to get the job done as fast as we can and we'll have teams standing by in case there's any further issues.


SAMBOLIN: Those recovery efforts are expected to begin later this morning. The only survivor, a 13-year-old girl, is at a hospital near Denver. She is expected to be OK.

BERMAN: We have unbelievable case of road rage from New York City to show you right now. It was all caught on camera. An SUV found itself boxed in on one of New York City's busiest roads by a pack of motorcycles. Look at that.

That is when one of the bikes seemed to swerve in front. The SUV bumped the motorcycle's back tire. The biker wound up with a broken leg. His fellow riders -- they were not happy at all so they surround and descend on the SUV. The driver floors it and races away.

In the process, he hits three more riders which leads to the bikers chasing him again all the way off the highway on to a side street where the driver with his wife and infant daughter can't get away.


CHRISTOPHER QUINONES, WITNESS: He got off his bike. He started attacking the person in the Range Rover with his helmet, breaking the windows. And after they got him out of his car, they beat him up.


BERMAN: Look at that.

New York police are looking for members of a motorcycle group called Hollywood Stunts and trying to find anyone to arrest. The SUV driver did have to go to the hospital for stitches but he was treated and relieved. Crazy, right?

SAMBOLIN: That's outrageous. Outrageous.

Forty minutes past the hour here.

Investigators are trying to figure out what led to a dangerous collision on Chicago's transit system. Have you seen this? Thirty- three people were sent to the hospital when an empty run-away train slammed into another one that was packed with commuters. And officials say no one was at the controls of the run-away train.


TAYLOR PETTIGROVE, WITNESS: Sound like a man. Stop the train! Stop the train! However, it didn't seem like the train was stopping at all. After that, it was a crash and there was smoke everywhere.

BRIAN STEELE, CHICAGO TRANSIT AUTHORITY: We have no indication at this point that there has been any criminal activity. There is no broken windows. There is no pried open doors, there's no graffiti or vandalism inside the rail car. But we are doing a thorough investigation of this.


SAMBOLIN: So, then, how did it happen? That remains a mystery there. Experts say it should have been stopped by emergency brakes and interlocks long before that collision. If anyone had jumped on board to get it going, they would have needed a special key.

BERMAN: Incredible images of a plane that crashed landed on Alaskan road. This Piper Super Cub came down mid-day Monday on a road near Wasilla, Alaska. The pilot reportedly had some sort of issue right after takeoff and decided to set the single-engine plane down on the road. The amazing fantastic news the pilot walked away unhurt.

SAMBOLIN: Wow. That seems to be happening a lot lately, right?

BERMAN: Good landing, right?


All right. So, New Jersey's Governor Chris Christie is taking steps toward blocking gay marriages there. That just days after lower court judge said not allowing same-sex couples to get married violates the rights and ordered weddings to begin later this month.

In a letter to the state Supreme Court, the acting state attorney general said it wants the high court to stop any marriages from happening while the governor appeals.

BERMAN: In North Carolina, the governor there is firing back at a federal lawsuit aimed at that state's new voting law. Pat McCrory called the suit without merit and overreach. The Justice Department is suing to block some parts of the law which requires that voters show IDs at the polls and it also limits early voting.

SAMBOLIN: It is 42 minutes past the hour. Let's take an early look at our weather.

Chad Myers is joining us with that.

CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: A very good early morning to you. Early, early morning or good morning I guess if you're watching in Hawaii.

Miami and Ft. Lauderdale thunderstorms throughout the afternoon, Tampa thunderstorms as well. It's going to be hard to find a lot of airport delays. Northeast is going to be pretty good, could be some early morning fog in Atlanta, and showers in Portland and Seattle. Other than that, airports are looking pretty good especially throughout the afternoon. High pressure and control, the East, sunny. It's going to feel like a fall morning and then a nice really early summer kind of day. Temperatures are going to be nice. Not a lot of humidity in the air and sunshine everywhere.

Now, remember just because the temperatures are cool today, 80 for a high in New York doesn't mean the U.V. is gone. The U.V. is eight to 10 in some spots.

Eighty-three for Kansas City, 77 in Denver, 90 in Dallas and 71 as you finally wake up, I hope, in Los Angeles.

BERMAN: We all hope you wake up in Los Angeles. Thanks, Chad. Appreciate it.

SAMBOLIN: And coming up, the U.S. government shutting down embassies and consulates around the globe. The U.S. government is shutting down embassies and consulates around the globe. But is putting the information out there tip off terrorists? The new problems facing intelligence officers coming up next.


BERMAN: Welcome back to EARLY START, everyone. It was a serious threat that led to major concerns in this country's diplomatic outpost in the Arab World. Dozens of embassies and consulates were shutdown.

Now, as Chris Lawrence tells us, the fact that so much information about the plot aided into the public eye, has intelligence officials worried they may have actually tipped off the very people they were trying to stop?


CHRIS LAWRENCE, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): U.S. intelligence officials are still dealing with the fall out over a leaked terrorist plot and how it was revealed.

PETER BERGEN, CNN TERRORISM ANALYST: Anybody who's an al Qaeda who's looking at these stories knows that the particular method that they were using to communicate has been compromised.

LAWRENCE: The U.S. shut down American embassies and consulates around the world last month because of a potentially imminent terrorist attack. News reports reveal the source of the concern -- an intercepted communication between two of al Qaeda's top leaders.

BERGEN: Clearly, there was some ability for al Qaeda central in Pakistan to reach out to al Qaeda in Yemen and have some meaningful discussion.

LAWRENCE: Al Qaeda's so-called conference call wasn't done over the phone. The group used a secure Internet messaging system, with various encrypted accounts providing multiple points of entry. Analysts say couriers of top leaders likely uploaded messages to these accounts. But since the very public revelation that the U.S. was able to intercept those messages, intelligence officials have seen a drop in how much al Qaeda uses the system. A U.S. official says it's a problem anytime you call attention to a specific channel. "We have to chase these guys when they go to different channels, and our hope is they don't go to others that are inaccessible to us."

But the U.S. expected to see al Qaeda react when they realize communication had been compromised.

JIM LEWIS, CENTER FOR STRATEGIC AND INTERNATIONAL STUDIES: They know there's a breach somewhere. They've got to find it. They've got to close it down.

LAWRENCE: Cyber expert Jim Lewis says it's not easy for the U.S. to access these systems. It can take a combination of surveillance, hacking and human agents.

LEWIS: Once you acquire them, you want to milk them for all they're worth. And when they switch, it can take months to rebuild that level of access.

LAWRENCE (on camera): But one U.S. official told me, the U.S. intelligence community is not giving up on that channel just said yet. He said, look, al Qaeda get spooked. They go away from channels. Sometimes other things happen in the world that force them back on to channels that the U.S. intelligence community has better access to. He says it's going to be at least six months before they know that al Qaeda has lost confidence in that particular channel.

Chris Lawrence, CNN, Washington.


SAMBOLIN: Thank you, Chris.

Well, there is new hope for some women dealing with infertility. Recharging and then re-implanting ovarian tissue in order to produce healthy eggs. Stanford University researchers used a process called in vitro activation. This is where they took an ovary or a piece of ovarian tissue, and nurtured it outside of the body, then re-implanted it. Of the 27 volunteers, five produced viable eggs and one is pregnant and another gave birth to a healthy baby.

BERMAN: That sounds a pretty interesting research.

SAMBOLIN: There's hope there, yes.

BERMAN: California's whooping cough outbreak in 2010 may have been fueled, at least in part, by groups of parents who did not want to vaccinate their children. Researchers say they isolated dozens of clusters to parents who applied for nonmedical vaccine exemptions that year. There were 9,000 cases and ten deaths from that disease back in 2010.

SAMBOLIN: A new round of airline fees to pay for extras that you might actually enjoy. So listen to this. Carriers are now starting to offer iPad rentals, physician class meals if you're sitting in coach, even paying to have an empty seat next to you.

BERMAN: That is a luxury.

SAMBOLIN: Isn't that great? Yes, so you can sleep and stretch out. That's much better --

BERMAN: Or you don't have someone talking to you.

SAMBOLIN: Oh, I didn't think about that. I don't mind the folks talking to me. That is better than paying to get your bag on board, right? In near future airlines may use your personal data to customize offers as well.

But here is the rub.

BERMAN: What's the rub?

SAMBOLIN: If, in fact, I already have an empty seat and I don't know it and I'm paying for it, I would have a problem for that.

BERMAN: You can check online and seat assignments beforehand.

SAMBOLIN: They're always full. It's very rare --

BERMAN: People just want to be near you is the thing. People want to si next to you.

SAMBOLIN: I just want some guarantees that I'm not paying for something I already would get for free.

BERMAN: Here, here.


BERMAN: All right. Coming up, the Rays and the Rangers! And a nail biting tiebreaker!

SAMBOLIN: Oh, my gosh!

BERMAN: There was some phenomenal pitching. Everyone will want to see this, even Zoraida.

Andy Scholes --

SAMBOLIN: Did you watch the game?

BERMAN: I didn't watch the game. I have to go to bed at 2:00 in the afternoon now that we go on so early.

Andy Scholes has the all of the action in this morning's "Bleacher Report." That's next.


BERMAN: So, the New Orleans Saints look like they have gotten over some of their problems from bounty-gate. They looked good last night.

Andy Scholes is here to break it all down for us in "The Bleacher Report."

Hey, Andy. Great to see you guys.

ANDY SCHOLES, THE BLEACHER REPORT: Great to see you guys, as well.

You know, what a difference a year and a head coach have made with the Saints. Sean Payton back on the sidelines, New Orleans offense looks better than ever. Saints and Dolphins squaring off in a battle of undefeated teams last night.

Drew Brees on his game. He threw for 413 yards and four touchdowns and the Saints cruise to an easy 38-17 win. New Orleans one of five teams that remains undefeated after the first month of the season.

Well, the Rays and Rangers playing game 163 of the Major League season last night. The winner gets the last wild card spot in the American League. Evan Longoria would provide the offense for the Tampa Bay and the Rays ace David Price, he threw a complete game. Tampa Bay ends the Rangers season, winning 5-2.

Up next for the Rays is the wild card game with the Indians. That would be Wednesday night.

Tonight, the Pirates host the Reds in the N.L. wild card. First pitch 8:07 Eastern on TBS.

Well, you know how they say better than never? Well, in a line up section on, you'll see a picture of Celtics forward Brandon Bass. Why? Because at 28 years old, he is finally learning how to swim!

SAMBOLIN: Oh, good. So cool.

SCHOLES: Look at this. Bass teaming up with the Boys and Girls Club of Boston to help kids conquer their fears of swimming. Bass is doing it to help himself as well because he says he doesn't each know how to float. So, guys, good for him, 28 years old and 6-foot-8, 250 pounds and he's not afraid to get in there and conquer his fears.

BERMAN: You know, I had never seen that, but that is amazing. That takes serious courage at 28 to be able to do that, to get in the pool and say I'm going to learn with a bunch of kids.

SAMBOLIN: It's a great example, because a lot of African-Americans don't tell their how to swim. So, he is a shining example. Get inside the pool and learn. It could save your life one day, right?

BERMAN: And Pirates in the playoffs tonight, hasn't happened in a long, long, long time.

SAMBOLIN: He is going to stay up and watch, so we will see what he looks like tomorrow morning.

Thank you, Andy.

We'll be right back.



OBAMA: Unfortunately, Congress has not fulfilled its responsibility. It's failed to pass a budget.

BOEHNER: The Senate has continued to reject our offers.

REID: We like to resolve issues, but we will not go to conference with a gun to our head.


BERMAN: Closed. Shutdown. Nothing doing!

This morning, we are waking up to a government shutdown, the first in 17 years, after government fails to pass a spending plan, fails to do its job. This morning, the blame game and what it all means for you.

SAMBOLIN: A lot of passion there. Good morning. Welcome to EARLY START. We're happy you're with us. I'm Zoraida Sambolin.

BERMAN: And I'm John Berman.

It is Tuesday, October 1st, 5:00 a.m. in the East.

SAMBOLIN: So, now, it has been five hours since Congress failed to reach a deal. And this morning, we are in the middle of the first government shutdown in nearly two decades. Lawmakers working down to the wire last night, last minute moves by both houses to overcome that budget standoff but ultimately you know there is no agreement.

Now, 800,000 federal workers will be furloughed and the entire country is waking up to a government in lockdown, for more than five hours now. You see that little clock on the right hand corner of your screen that is telling the tale this morning.

Senior White House correspondent Brianna Keilar is in Washington with the very latest for us.

We're going to keep that clock up until they figure this out.