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Massive Storm; Obama: I Am Sorry; Bills Coming On Obamacare Changes; Iran Nuke Deal May Be Close; $2 Billion Lost; Teen Found After Nine Years; FDA Wants Trans Fats Out; New Information in NFL Bullying Case

Aired November 8, 2013 - 06:00   ET



CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Breaking News. One of the strongest storms in the history of the planet, stronger than Katrina and Sandy combined, is lashing South Asia this morning. We're going to show you what could happen there and here.

KATE BOLDUAN, CNN ANCHOR: The apology. President Obama says he is sorry to those who have lost coverage due to Obamacare, but will the mea culpa quiet the calls to delay parts of the law?

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: New details. Jonathan Martin telling his side of the story through his lawyer alleging a year and a half of abuse by more than one player. We have the stunning accusations.

CUOMO: Your "New Day" starts right now.

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


CUOMO: Good morning. Welcome to "NEW DAY." It is Friday, everybody, November 8th, six o'clock in the east.

Now listen to this, one of the strongest storms we've ever seen is walloping the Philippines as we speak. Take a look at the radar. These are colors we rarely ever see in the forecast. The storm is 300 miles across. That's about half the size of Texas, just for some perspective. Now, it's too early to assess damage from this super typhoon, that's what they're calling it.

But here's what we hear about wind gusts, 235 miles an hour. Remember, you get to 100 miles an hour, it becomes a hurricane, 235 miles an hour, we're hearing. Now, we're looking at the pictures now. The wind is already blowing. We're going to try and find out more about this. We have Kathy Novak who's in manila.

It's very tough to get communications out of an area like this. We believe she's on the phone. Can you hear us? Can you hear us?

VOICE OF KATHY NOVAK, MANILA, PHILIPPINES: Hi. I can hear you. I'm not sure if you can hear me. It's starting to get very rainy and windy where I am here in Manila. So, I'll just go ahead and keep talking and hopefully you can still hear me. (INAUDIBLE) I can only imagine how bad it is down south where the winds are the hardest

But we're starting to get a few more pictures on local television right now, the scene that has been facing the people down south throughout the day. Trees have been uprooted, debris flying through the air. We heard fishermen telling local media they've lost their boats, an incredible picture of a large barge that's turned on its side and there were people on board that lost their lives.

The communications have been cut off for so many of these reasons. Several areas around Tacloban and also around Bohol, the areas that were hit very hard by an earthquake just last month. People are having difficulty getting information, even as far as what's going on there. We heard of people being evacuated. The evacuated centers themselves have had to be moved. It's a fluid situation. As I say here in manila, it's very loud here.

CUOMO: All right, Kathy, we'll let you take some cover right now. If this is the tail of the storm, it's only worse to come. We'll check back in. This is unprecedented scientifically and also it's going to be from a human perspective.

BOLDUAN: Absolutely.

CUOMO: So we're going to keep watching this. As Kathy Novak said, it's just the tail of the storm so the worst isn't even there yet. About a half hour from now we're going to go back with a guest and get perspective and keep you up to date on this storm. Again, they are calling it a super typhoon. We have not seen one of this combined strength before. So we'll be tracking it very closely for you this morning throughout the show.

BOLDUAN: People throw the word historic around a lot. This actually is. This is reality that the Philippines is facing right now. We're going to get back to that.

Let's move now back to Washington though, President Obama saying he's sorry. In an NBC interview, the president apologized to Americans who are losing health coverage because of the new law. His response to what people call his broken promise that people could keep their insurance plan if they liked it. He says his team is looking at a range of options to try to help and that he's confident though that the site will be even better, in his words, by the end of the month.

CNN's Athena Jones is following all of the developments live at the White House this morning. Good morning, Athena.

ATHENA JONES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning to you, Kate. The president is heading down to New Orleans today to talk about the economy. But he's still dealing with the fallout over and the news that millions of Americans are getting these cancellations letters from their insurance companies because of Obamacare.


JONES (voice-over): President Obama is apologizing to Americans losing their health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, despite his frequent promises they'd be able to keep plans they like. Telling NBC News --

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA: I am sorry that they are finding themselves in this situation based on assurances they got from me.

JONES: About 5 percent of Americans buy their insurance on the individual market and some are losing their plans as insurance companies cancel policies that don't meet tough new Obamacare standards.

OBAMA: We weren't as clear as we needed to be in terms of the changes that were taking place. I want to do everything we can to make sure that people are finding themselves in a good position, a better position than they were before this law happened.

JONES: The president said most people getting cancellation letters will be able to get new plans at the same price or cheaper on the new marketplaces. He stuck to his administration's latest promise, that the troubled web site will be fixed by the end of the month.

OBAMA: It's better than it was last week and it certainly better than October 1st. I'm confident that it will be even better by November 30th and that the majority of people are going to be able to get on there and enroll.

JONES: Obama's apology comes as a bipartisan pair of senators filed legislation Thursday to delay for a year the fine to be levied on people who don't buy health insurance by the end of March, citing the problems with the web site. West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin and Illinois Republican Mark Kirk say, quote, "This common sense proposal simply allows Americans to take more time to browse and explore their options, making 2014 a true transition year."


JONES: Now, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius will be in Atlanta today where she'll announce new regulations requiring insurance companies to treat mental illness like any other illness. I should tell you, this rule -- these rules were put in place back in 2008, this requirement that insurance companies treat a mental illness like any other illness. They've been waiting for regulations on how to do so. That's what we'll be hearing from Kathleen Sebelius today -- Chris, Kate.

BOLDUAN: All right, Athena, thank you so much for that update. Let's talk more about this, though, the interview and what it means going forward with our chief national correspondent, John King, joining us now. So John, what do you make of the president's interview, the apology and also what more he is saying about Obamacare and how they're trying to fix it. Does it help the administration's case? JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: We'll see by watching the Senate Democrats. As Athena just noted, Joe Manchin is part of one piece of legislation that would delay the penalty for not signing up. Another Democrat on the ballot next year, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, is among those pushing a new law and the House Republicans want to do this as well, forcing the insurance companies to re-issue the policies that have been canceled and there are more and more proposals coming.

Kate, what the president is trying to do, first and foremost, is slow, if he can't stop and he can't right now, slow the panic among his fellow Democrats because we know Republicans want to make more runs at changing this law if not getting rid of this law. The problem for the president right now is Democrats in the Senate who are up next year.

There are 10 and perhaps even more of them now demanding changes. So the president said his team is trying to fix some things. There are some things they could try to do administratively, but trust me, those Democratic senators want to be able to go home now in this tough political environment and say I force the president to change the health care law. So this is just the beginning. The apology is not going to stop it.

CUOMO: You know, John, let me ask you something though, is that even a fair headline that he apologizes? You looked at the transcript of the interview. He didn't say the words until way deep into his answer. He kept getting pushed in that direction. I understand why any reporter would want that sound bite because it creates headlines and buzz.

But he was not apologetic in as much as he said, look, there are real reasons we made these decisions. We have problems we are trying to fix them, but don't get caught up in these plans that people want because a lot of them are insufficient. He had real reasons for things. How much is this playing into the politics of the situation versus him just staying the course of what he believes?

KING: You make a fascinating and a very important point because the president did not fully apologize. If you go back and look at the time line, here is the president's credibility problem. The president essentially said if you're mad at me, I'm sorry; however, we think we were right and I think in six months or a year, you're going to see that this was a good law. That might be the case.

If you look long down the horizon, we'll see how this all gets implemented. The problem is, the problem of the moment, you have the competence question about the roll-out plan including the web site and you have the credibility on the side that the president said consistently, not once, not twice, but dozens of times, if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor, period. If you like your plan, you can keep that plan, period.

Chris and Kate, the administration was told it knew in the summer of 2010, as it started to write the regulations that as many as two- thirds of the people in that individual insurance market, as many as two-thirds of them, because of the new regulations would have to lose their plans. That was in 2010, the summer.

Remember the campaign in 2012, more than two years later, the president was sticking to this, when Mitt Romney was criticizing him and saying you're going to lose your doctor, your plan. He was saying, no, you won't. So that's the president's credibility problem. His own people on paper were telling him as many as two-thirds might lose it and the president was out in the middle of a campaign saying no, you won't.

BOLDUAN: Well, and that also then begs the question, what should the president do about the latest move by House Republicans? They're now going to move next week to follow up on what they said they were going to do. They are going to pass a bill that does just that, kind of calls his bluff. If you like your plan, you can keep it.

That is what they are going to bring forward. Is that boxing the president in? It appears on the surface that it's going to make the administration like disingenuous if the Republicans say we're trying to fix it and they're not letting us.

KING: That is the problem, but you'll have the House Republicans starting that effort. Speaker Boehner last night saying, Mr. President, thanks for the apology, now prove that you mean it. You said you've feel badly for these people, let's change it for these people. That's on the Republican side. That's important to watch.

But I will tell you, they want to do this on the Senate side as well. The Democrats are more worth watching at the moment. The only way the president can push back against the Republicans is if he knows the Democrats have his back. Survival is the strongest instinct in politics.

Those senators on the ballot next year, they are running for a six- year term. They want to be in office long after President Obama is gone. So when he says be patient, give me time, their answer at the moment, Kate and Chris, is sorry, Mr. President, no.

That's the dynamic. The president himself in that interview said we need to make some changes. My team is looking at that. He has now opened that door. He may not be able to keep it as narrowly opened as he would like.

CUOMO: Isn't that the problem, though, is that you finally get the president if you are the opposition party into a position where he's saying, yes, we have to fix these things, right. Now all of a sudden, it's seen as a sign of weakness. This is what you say you want and he now says it, now it's a sign of weakness. The White House is paralysis by analysis.

You're left with the same problem, John. The question becomes, this bill they're going to put forward on the Republican side may be in both Houses, you get to keep your plan. Who does? What plans? What if your plan stinks? What if they're going to gouge you on price the following year?

So now you're going to put a Band-aid on it that may make you bleed more so that's the worry in this situation. If you play to the politics, do you wind up losing what is really important?

BOLDUAN: Isn't there potential that it could ruin the law that was passed?

KING: That's one of the White House concerns, whether you agree or disagree with the law, their concern if you start changing the rules you give more people to sign up, for example, they need all those healthy young people to sign up because that's part of the financing of the broader part of the law. They wanted those new regulations to make the plans broader to get the coverage they insisted that the president insisted you would get under the new law.

So every change they make, you factor in what does it do to the law in general. This debate, even if they pass new laws next week or tonight even you'll watch them roll out, watch them be impacted and like we're seeing here, when you make such big changes you get some things wrong and you have to go back and fix them.

So this has now become the all-consuming debate in Washington, both from a political standpoint and a policy standpoint. So if you're the president of the United States, it's not just what is happening, but when it's happening. This is a dangerous point during his second term and this is not ending. He did not close the door with this partial apology.

BOLDUAN: All right, John, great to see you. Thank you so much.

KING: Thank you.

BOLDUAN: A lot of news we're following this morning. What's going on, Michaela?

PEREIRA: Good morning, guys. Good morning to you at home. Making news, new developments this morning out of talks on Iran's nuclear program, there are signs that a deal could be close. Iran's chief negotiator telling CNN a breakthrough agreement could happen today. Secretary of State John Kerry has changed his plans and is now joining the talks in Geneva. A State Department official says he'll help narrow any differences.

Last month's government shutdown cost the country big time to the tune of $2 billion. New government report says that was the value of time and productivity wasted when 800,000 federal workers could not report to duty. That's just part of the equation. Another 500 million was lost in related spending, that includes tourists who canceled trips to federal sites, among other slowdowns.

A Wisconsin girl missing for nine years has been found in Mexico. Connie McCallister was just 16 years old when she disappeared. She is 25 now. She claims her boyfriend drugged her and took her to Mexico against her will. She eventually married another man and had three children, but did not know how to get back home. McCallister met an American missionary who contacted police in Wisconsin and now she is hoping to move her family to the U.S.

Twitter's first trading day on the New York Stock Exchange, quite a big hit, the initial public offering price was $26 a share, but by the time trading ended that stock surged more than 70 percent to nearly $45 a share, becoming one of the internet's most valuable properties.

A story now that may restore your faith in humanity, a Tennessee mother and daughter on vacation in Daytona Beach, Florida, walking on the beach, they find a purse that has $13,000 in cash and thousands of dollars worth of jewelry inside. What did they do? They turned it over to the authorities who tracked down the rightful owner in Maryland. So on this Friday, we show you, there's goodness.

CUOMO: Who has $13,000 and jewelry in a purse?

PEREIRA: I don't. Just for the record, if I leave my purse, I'd still like it back. It's not going to have jewels and $13,000 in it.

BOLDUAN: If there is you and I are going to be hanging out quite a bit more.

CUOMO: A lot of intrigue there. Karen Maginnis, in for Indra Petersons. Boy, do we have weather on the watch this morning. What do we know now?

KAREN MAGINNIS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Yes, well, the temperatures are about 20 degrees cooler this morning than they were yesterday morning, very mild air out ahead of that cold front. Now that the cold front has moved through, we'll start to fill in with that much colder air coming in from the west and the northwest.

We start the morning out with 30s and a few 40s here and there. Along the eastern great lakes you're seeing a little bit of snow, not a lot, just flurries. Some areas may see a rain/snow mix. Temperatures across the Midwest in the 20s and 30s. We haven't seen the coldest air yet as you would expect.

Certainly lake-effect snow, especially across the eastern great lakes extending all the way from Rochester to Buffalo into Syracuse, maybe a few light snow flurries expected across the upper Ohio River Valley as well. Well, temperatures will bounce around a little bit, going into the next several days.

But after that, another funnel system will move through and by late in the day on Monday and then going into Tuesday, temperatures are going to be much, much colder. How much colder? Well temperatures will struggle to be in the 30s in Chicago and teens overnight. Back to you guys.

BOLDUAN: All right, Karen, we'll check back in with you, watching the weather here, watching the weather in the Philippines. There is a lot going on that we are tracking this morning.

Coming up next on NEW DAY, he says it was not just hazing. A lawyer for Jonathan Martin, the Dolphins player who left the team, he is making it clear his client was harassed he says by fellow teammates. We are going to have the latest on that.

CUOMO: The FDA says trans fats are unsafe, kind of. It could mean a new law banning lots of food you probably eat. We'll take you through why and whether it's the right call especially for the government to make.


CUOMO: Welcome back to NEW DAY. We have food news for you. The Food and Drug Administration is on the attack against artery-clogging trans fats. They're saying not only are they unhealthy, but they're unsafe at any level.

So they're ordering the food industry to phase them out. Chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta is at the CNN center to help you understand this. Great to have you, doc, as always. Help me with this. Let's set some perspective. One, how did this happen? Why was it ever allowed in food and if it's so bad, why are they phasing it out? Give us some perspective.

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN MEDIAL CORRESPONDENT: It's one of those interesting things. I think it's been well established in the medical community and even the food industry that these trans fats are a real problem. They're used because they're a cheap way to actually extend the shelf life of food. But people have known for a long time it's a bad problem. Who's been silent has been the FDA up until now.


GUPTA: It's an ingredient in a lot of our favorite foods: microwave popcorn, cookies, cakes, frozen pizza and much more. Trans fats. They increase shelf life and they add flavor to processed foods. But the FDA is now saying they are not safe and wants to ban them. It's a move they say would save thousands of lives.

MICHAEL TAYLOR, DEPUTY COMMISSIONER, FDA: We think it's time to address and really phase out the remaining uses of trans fat in the diet so that we can reduce the incidence of heart disease and deaths resulting from heart attack.

GUPTA: You see, trans fats, lower good cholesterol. And they raise bad cholesterol. What we're trying to avoid is this: LDL, or bad cholesterol building up as plaque in the blood vessel walls. Because that plaque buildup is what can cause heart attacks.

The CDC says ditching transfats would prevent up to 20,000 heart attacks a year and as many as 7,000 more deaths from heart disease.

New York City banned transfats from restaurants in 2007, snd many companies, and popular chains around the country, have already phased them out. The Grocery Manufacturers Association says that it looks forward to working with the FDA to better understand their concerns and how the industry can better serve consumers.


GUPTA: I should point out, again, our society as a whole has done a pretty good job when it comes to trans fats. In 2003, ten years ago, the average American ate about 4.6 grams a day and sort of voluntarily, it's now down to about a gram a day. A lot of it because of the leadership in New York, under Mayor Bloomberg, again banning those in restaurants.

CUOMO: If this happens the way the FDA wants it to, how will the food landscape change?

GUPTA: Well, it will be interesting, I think. First of all, there's a 60-day comment period before this can happen. Most people expect that will be pretty smooth sailing because the industry has already started to adopt some of the changes.

But I think what the interesting thing is, you eat a lot of trans fats without knowing it. It's in a lot of processed foods. So, people won't consciously be aware but they'll start eating less trans fats because it just won't be in a lot of those foods they'll still consume.

CUOMO: So what's your take on this aspect of it, Sanjay? Is this bad enough that it warrants the government telling you what to eat, or is this a decision that should still be left up to you?

GUPTA: I think people will still have options, they'll be able to read the labels. But I think with regard to trans fats, the industry itself, the FDA is endorsing this, the industry itself is saying we don't need to have trans fats in foods. There are other options that are available that are much healthier options. They may be more expensive. We may see an impact there. But I think in terms of what someone can eat they'll have a lot of choices, but they'll have to read labels to understand it.

CUOMO: This is late in coming but probably the right move.

GUPTA: Everyone agrees on it, yes, Chris.

CUOMO: Thank you very much, doc. Always great to have you. Have a good weekend.

BOLDUAN: We have lots of new details this morning in the Miami Dolphins bullying scandal. Jonathan Martin who says he was forced to leave his team is finally speaking out through his attorney.

We're also learning more about his alleged tormentor, Richie Incognito, was reportedly the subject of a police station investigation in an unrelated case. What does this mean? Andy Scholes has the Bleacher Report for us. Good morning, Andy.


The hits keep coming for the Dolphins and Richie Incognito. The suspended lineman's character is being called into question again after another incident has come to light and Jonathan Martin is now claiming that he tried to befriend his teammates, but they continuously harassed him.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) SCHOLES: For the first time since Jonathan Martin left the team, we're hearing his side of the story. Martin's attorney releasing a strongly worded statement bashing his teammates saying in part, Jonathan endured harassment that went far beyond the traditional locker room hazing, beyond the well-publicized voicemail with its racial epithet, Jonathan endured a malicious physical attack on him by a teammate and daily vulgar comments.

He also slammed any claims that Martin just wasn't tough enough for the NFL locker room saying Jonathan has started every game with the Miami Dolphins since being drafted in 2012. At Stanford he was the anchor for Jim Harbaugh's smash mouth brand of football, and he protected Andrew Luck's blind side.

Several Dolphins players have recently spoken out about Martin's claims of harassment, specifically against offensive lineman Richie Incognito, and many claim the two were friends.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think if you had asked John Martin a week before who his best friend on the team was, he would say Richie Incognito. The first guy to stand up for Jonathan when anything went down on the field, any kind of tussle, Richie was the first guy there.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If there was a problem, Jonathan Martin didn't show it. And I've been here long enough to know that off the field, that those two guys were thick as thieves. And that they went out together and hung out together. They did a lot of stuff together. If he had a problem with the way the guy was treating him, he had a funny way of showing it.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They were good friends, best friends.

SCHOLES: Martin's attorney attempts to smack down those claims saying for the entire season and a half he was with the Dolphins, he attempted to befriend the same teammates who subjected him to the abuse with the hope that doing so would end the harassment. This is a textbook reaction of victims of bullying. Despite these efforts, the taunting continued.

The attorneys end the statement citing one of the taunts too vulgar for us to repeat, allegedly threatening sexual assault against Martin's sister. The attorney did not say who allegedly made those threats.

Other accusations against Richie Incognito are now surfacing. We're learning that he was at the center of a molestation investigation last year. This comes by a new report by CNN affiliate WPLG. The report claims Incognito was accused of harassing a volunteer at the Dolphins' annual golf tournament. The female volunteer claimed Incognito was, quote, "acting inappropriate towards her." Among the claims she says he fondled her with a golf club, leaned against her with his private parts and emptied a water bottle in her face. Police in Adventuro, Florida investigated the claims. No charges were ever filed.


SCHOLES: CNN has reached out to Incognito's attorney and the Dolphins but we have not gotten a reply.

BOLDUAN: All right, Andy, thank you so much for that.

Coming up next on NEW DAY, a massive super typhoon, half the size of Texas is what we're talking about here, is slamming into the Philippines this morning. It's one of the biggest in reported history. We'll be talking to an expert on these storms for what you need to know, coming up.

CUOMO: Going through the Philippines, may hit Vietnam and China, so we're going to have to follow it.

Also, Toronto's mayor, a political storm. He's in trouble again. We're going to show you the new video that's raising more questions about whether he should stay in office at all. The answer seems fairly obvious.