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Sterling Vows to Fight; First Lady in Food Fight; Emma Watson Graduates with an Armed Guard; The Sixties -- the Exhibit

Aired May 28, 2014 - 08:30   ET




Donald Sterling is putting the NBA on notice, it appears, that he plans to fight the league's effort to terminate his ownership of the L.A. Clippers every step of the way. Sterling says that his racist comments were recorded illegally and without his knowledge during a lover's quarrel. Meantime, Sterling's wife, Shelly, she's reportedly moving pretty quickly to sell the team for billions.

How is this all going to happen? Jeffrey Toobin, CNN's senior legal analyst, is here to help us out.

I mean, I've got to tell you, when Sterling's attorney was talking to ESPN, he sure had a lot to say. I want to get your take on this. Sterling says -- his attorney says that that conversation was recorded illegally so it cannot be used in any proceedings to try to get him kicked out of the league. His attorney says, "so, if the basis of their case is illegal evidence, they don't have much of a case. The whole thing is a pile of garbage." Jeffrey.

JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: Well, I think what you see from the Sterlings now is kind of a two-track strategy. On the one hand, as you said, Shelly Sterling is shopping the team. On the other hand, they are keeping the legal option open by making this filing yesterday. And I think they really complement each other because basically every -


TOOBIN: Well, because everybody knows Sterling is going to have to sell this team. He is either going to sell it voluntarily or he's going to be forced to. The NBA is going to force him out.

Now, they can threaten a lawsuit, but remember, the NBA is an association. They are not the government. They don't have to abide by the First Amendment. They don't have to honor - you know, they have their own rules, and their rules say, if three-quarters of the owners want you out, you're going to get thrown out. So he is out of there regardless of what this legal filing says. But, he can say to the people who want to buy the team, look, you better make my price -- you better pay me all the money I want or I'll just fight it in court. So I think it's actually a very clever complimentary strategy, but either way Sterling's going to sell this team.

MICHAELA PEREIRA, CNN ANCHOR: So, to the owners, Jeffrey, so let's say they have the vote and the votes come against Sterling. They vote -- the owners vote to say you're out, we're going to force the sale of the team. Legally, what kind of course does he take? Does he just sue the NBA then? How does that all work?

TOOBIN: Well, that's -- that's clearly what's implied by yesterday's filing. You know, it's a 32-page densely argued brief, very impressive piece of legal work filed yesterday by Donald Sterling's lawyer. And the clear threat is, if you, NBA owners, vote to throw me out, I am going to go to court to try to stop it. I think the chances of a court stopping this sale are extremely unlikely. But, you know, courts being what they are, you never know for sure what they might do. And Sterling has clearly put the NBA on notice that fighting is one option.

CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: You weren't a little surprised that he hung so much of his argument on the - I guess suggested admissibility of the evidence when he knows those rules don't apply in this proceeding?

TOOBIN: Well, I think that is - that's a weak argument on his part because, you know, illegally obtained evidence can only -- you're only prohibited from using it in a criminal case in court. And as Adam Silver said in the very first press conference, he said, look, the issue of the legality of the taping is simply not relevant. The issue for the NBA is, are we damaged as a league by having Donald Sterling as an owner because that tape is out there.

I think his stronger argument that he makes in the brief is that personal misconduct, you know, saying bad things, racist things, is simply not the kind of misconduct covered by the NBA constitution. That's a stronger argument. I think neither one is going to win. But as you point out, Chris, you know, the legality of the taping is really irrelevant in this proceeding.

BOLDUAN: Fascinating nonetheless. I'll tell you that much, Jeffrey. Jeffrey Toobin, thanks so much.


CUOMO: Coming up on NEW DAY, First Lady Michelle Obama slamming House Republicans. Why? Over a school lunch plan she says is unhealthy for your kids. We'll hear from both sides coming up.


BOLDUAN: Welcome back to NEW DAY.

First Lady Michelle Obama is taking on House Republicans over school lunch. Her push, against members looking to add a waiver for schools to opt out of school lunch reforms. Their argument, the standards are actually setting schools and students back. But does this give schools a free pass to serve unhealthy food? Here to discuss, we have Jon Dickl, regional director for the School Nutrition Association, and Margo Wootan, the director for nutrition policy at the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

Good morning to both of you.

I know you are both on opposite ends of this debate, can you both - can we at least begin in a point of agreement, that healthier food for students at school is not only a good thing, but possible?



WOOTAN: Over the last two years -

BOLDUAN: Go ahead.

WOOTAN: Schools have really been working hard to improve the nutritional quality of school meals. We've seen more progress toward healthier school lunches in the last two years than over the last two decades.

BOLDUAN: So we can agree on one point, but I think that's probably the last point that you both are going to agree on moving forward.

Jon, you represent an organization, a very powerful trade organization, that represents members that are not only nutrition workers at schools, but also some of the companies that supply food to schools, like Coca-Cola. What are the actual challenges that you believe schools face that need to push off these standards?

DICKL: You know, right now we're facing some real challenges in regards to whole grains. The whole grain targets that we currently face for next school year would require 100 percent of all of our whole grain offerings to be 50 percent or greater enriched with whole grain. And so what that means for us is, we have several challenges throughout the United States.

USDA, I want to applaud them for introducing an opportunity to get a waiver for whole grain pastas because whole grain pasta, right now, is a real challenge for any of our districts nationwide, but it does not address some concerns that some of our members in the southwest have concerns about tortillas and whole grain tortillas, and an item that is such a huge part of the culture of that area. In the southeast, we're facing challenges with whole grain biscuits. So students are not finding acceptability with many of those whole grain items.

BOLDUAN: So, Margo -

DICKL: In addition to that, we have sodium targets that we're facing.

BOLDUAN: So, Margo, if what Jon is saying is right, that they're having problems getting this food and applying these standards in full, they want a waiver to push off the standards, what's wrong with that?

WOOTAN: Well, the answer to a handful of very small and technical challenges that some schools are facing is not to throw out the school nutrition standards altogether, which is what the House is proposing and what the School Nutrition Association's been lobbying for. What we need to do is, in a very targeted way, address those challenges and help schools find solutions. Maybe Jon's having trouble with whole wheat tortillas. But I was just out in Arizona and they have great tasting whole wheat tortillas that the kids love.

BOLDUAN: So, Jon, why - and for that (ph), why throw out a baby - why throw the baby out with the bath water?

DICKL: I would never accuse Ms. Wootan of being disingenuous in regards to that. However, SNA is not advocating a total throw-out of the regulations. What we're advocating is maintain at the 50 percent whole grain offering level. This allows flexibility for programs like mine to be able to offer some whole grain items and transition students into more whole grain items over time.

That's what we did here in Knox County. We implemented whole grains prior to the requirements of the Healthy Hunger for Kids Act. We don't do 100 percent whole grain, but we did find items that students are finding palatable. In addition to that, we're having some challenges with sodium targets. And sodium is going to impact the whole grain breads because sodium is a necessary requirement for leavening of breads.

BOLDUAN: So, guys, let me ask you this.

DICKL: In addition to that, cheese items.

BOLDUAN: We can talk about cheese, we can talk about whole grain, we can talk about sodium. I think, at the end of the day, what a lot of people don't want to see is just another fight nit-picking on details coming from Washington, that is -- coming from Washington even though you guys are in different places. Why can this not be figured out without throwing politics into it, without having to get the House involved in fighting with the first lady? Why can't this get figured out outside of the political realm? I want to get both of your answers to sum it up.

Margo, you first.

WOOTAN: That's exactly what we're asking for. House Republicans may not have the same goals as what the school nutritionists have. They are asking to throw out all the nutrition standards, not just sodium and whole grains for a whole year. That would be taking us back in time when we're finally making good progress on improving the nutritional quality of school lunch and finally addressing childhood obesity. We need targeted reforms, technical assistance to help schools in those areas where they're struggling, not throw the standards out altogether.

BOLDUAN: Jon, what do you think?

DICKL: And like I said earlier, the School Nutrition Association is not advocating a complete throw-out of all the regulations. We're looking for a slowdown, allowing time for change and allowing time for people to get caught up. The School Nutrition Association is an organization that has been serving healthy, nutritious meals for over 70 years, nearly 70 years. And in doing so, we are advocating healthy meals for kids. That's what we do. You know, to try to discredit the association is not accurate. We are advocating healthy meals. That's what our association's foundation is built upon. And we look to make -

BOLDUAN: I'm telling you guys -

DICKL: To meet with USDA.

BOLDUAN: I'll tell you guys, though -

DICKL: Sorry.

BOLDUAN: I'm not hearing a good answer why this - why this issue can't stay out of the political realm. It's -- I'm still going to be left scratching my head, why school lunches have to be caught up in politics, why it's had to get to this point and it hasn't been able to be dealt with to this point. We'll continue that conversation, though, because we're not going to get that answer today.

Jon Dickl and Margo Wootan, thank you very much.

WOOTAN: Thank you.

BOLDUAN: All right.

CUOMO: All right, coming up on NEW DAY, Emma Watson had more than a diploma at her college graduation. Who's that older woman next to her and why is she packing? The story, next.


PEREIRA: Well, it's graduation season. When "Harry Potter" actress Emma Watson graduated from Brown University Sunday, she didn't show up alone; a woman also wearing a cap and gown but carrying a holstered handgun was by her side. The university is being tight-lipped on why.

We sent our Nischelle Turner to investigate and explain what's going on here?


The short answer is it's her bodyguard. But it is a little bit strange when you see that bodyguard she's sort of posing as another graduate.



GRINT: Yes, you can.

TURNER: In the world of "Harry Potter", young students face trolls, dragons and Voldemort, himself. Could graduation at Brown University be more fraught with danger than facing the Dark Lord?

Over the weekend, the 24-year-old "Harry Potter" star Emma Watson graduated from Ivy League Brown University with a Bachelors' Degree in English Literature. See here as Watson sits next to this woman, also decked out in cap and gown. But the mystery classmate is actually guarding her disguised as a Brown grad. After the ceremony the same woman is seen escorting Watson, this time without a cap and gown but sporting a holstered weapon, a badge and other gear.

So is her security detail at graduation, the sign of a bigger threat?

DANIEL BONGINO (PH), FORMER SECRET SERVICE AGENT: It's not uncommon at all to bring people like that on board. Access control is an integral portion of security and she didn't have it. There was no way for her to control access to her at that event. It was a graduation that was for all intents and purposes public.

TURNER: But Watson's security doesn't stop at the police escort. According to the "New York Post", Watson hired former New York Police Lieutenant Denise Maroney (ph) as her bodyguard -- a constant fixture protecting the star since 2012.

WATSON: It's the end of everything.


TURNER: That's when she was shooting the film "Noah". Tabloids reported an incident on the set. A rep for the star told a gossip blog, a man crashed the set but was removed. Now Watson has security even at her Ivy League graduation.


TURNER: Now, the school is not commenting. Emma Watson's team is not commenting as well. But you know, you have to understand that when it's an issue of security, they wouldn't necessarily talk about their client's security detail.

And I do have to say, it's not all that uncommon for celebrities to have a full security detail. In fact, I think I'm going to out myself here.

PEREIRA: You have security detail?

TURNER: For the past year you all thought Indra Petersons was doing weather. She is my heavy.

BOLDUAN: I knew there was something going on.

TURNER: She's my heavy.

BOLDUAN: I knew there was something going on.

TURNER: She wouldn't know a polar bear from a polar vortex. That girl is my security detail.

PEREIRA: I think we just need to stop. That was too awesome.

TURNER: She's my heavy.

BOLDUAN: Michaela, I'll be your heavy.


BOLDUAN: You see that? She doesn't even believe that I can do it.

Don't sleep on science, Cuomo.

CUOMO: Don't sleep on science.

BOLDUAN: I don't know. I love Nischelle.

Coming up next on "NEW DAY", CNN's new series, "THE SIXTIES" has inspired a new exhibit in New York City. From the moon landing to Mr. Rogers, we're going to look at the decade that changed the world, when we come back.


BOLDUAN: The music was good from that decade. That's for sure. This week folks passing through New York's Grand Central Terminal can also take a trip through time. A new exhibit just opened called "A Look into the Sixties" and like the CNN original series that inspired it, it offers an up close and first hand look at a decade we continue to see the effects of and continue to learn from.

We were able to check out the exhibit just as it was being unveiled.


BOLDUAN: It's an impressive tribute to a decade of American history that changed the world. Now visitors can get a taste of the 60s at Grand Central Terminal in New York City transformed to capture its essence.

HAROLD CLOSTER, DIRECTOR, SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTE: These are real icons of American history. These are stools from the Woolworth's lunch counter where in 1960 four African-American students sat down and requested a cup of coffee and really launch the modern civil rights movement and the sit-in movement.

This is the bench that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. sat on in his prison cell in Birmingham and composed the letter from a Birmingham jail which articulated his philosophy of non violence.

The landing on the moon was one of the most significant events in the 1960s, it's something that President Kennedy has promised in his inauguration and made a reality before the decade was out.


BOLDUAN: And there is so much more to see. New York's Governor Andrew Cuomo -- do you know him?


BOLDUAN: He was also on hand to unveil the new 60s exhibit. It's all, of course, after we toured the installation, had a chance to talk to him about the importance of the decade and a little bit more.


BOLDUAN: What does this exhibit mean having it at Grand Central? What do you hope people get from it?

GOV. ANDREW CUOMO (D), NEW YORK: Well, I think just the point of bringing the exhibit to the people rather than expecting that the people are going to go to the exhibit is exactly right. And to be here in Grand Central Terminal where people are coming through all day long and, by the way, people from all over the world come by. So I think the venue is smart.

But also, the 60s was a very powerful period in our nation's development. In many ways, a lot of the things that happened in the 60s are still playing out. In many ways the progress we made in the 60s we haven't even seen since. So it's a fascinating period to study, to understand why we are and where we are.

BOLDUAN: Even as a child, everyone always seems to remember when JFK was shot, where they were -- those enduring memories. Even as children everyone took something from that decade.

A. CUOMO: JFK's death certainly for me a New Yorker, Queens boy, the World's Fair, and also you see exhibits about the Cold War and some signs about the Cold War. I remember being in school and the air raids that we would have and preparation for an air raid. That was really frightening as a child and the thoughts that would go through your head. So, also, a lot of New York is in this exhibit.

BOLDUAN: Since I have you and I rarely have a free moment alone with the more developed Cuomo.

A. CUOMO: Yes.

BOLDUAN: What is your best advice on how to handle this man that I get to see every morning? How to keep him in line -- from the man who would know?

A. CUOMO: Just tune him out. Just turn it off. With your little volume control, just turn off the volume.

BOLDUAN: I rarely meet someone who really can empathize and feel my pain. I just wish I could beat him up as good as you probably can.

A. CUOMO: I always could.


BOLDUAN: There in the jump to that -- he began his remarks at the ceremony with, "Someone called me the older Cuomo, but I like to say the more developed Cuomo." I just could not let that pass.

INDRA PETERSONS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Don't worry. You don't suffer alone, Kate. We also do.

C. CUOMO: Poor you. Poor you. You know what I have to say to him? Lower my taxes. All right. Stop spending the time in Grand Central Station talking about history, lower my taxes.

PETERSONS: He's going to say bring him on.


C. CUOMO: Politicians always mucking things up.

BOLDUAN: I know. It was a very -- it was a very tough interview. Very tough moment with the guy.

C. CUOMO: Yes. You were really playing to power here by the way. Get a hold of yourself.

PEREIRA: He's that crazy. Why is your face so red?

C. CUOMO: Because I'm angry. It's rage.


BOLDUAN: Sorry. State Governor -- great to see you.

And a reminder the new CNN series from executive producer Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman "THE SIXTIES" debuts tomorrow. Tune in or set your DVR for the premiere, Thursday night 9:00 Eastern and Pacific on CNN.

I got a little preview of the first episode -- very worthwhile.

C. CUOMO: By the way, the governor didn't know you were pregnant. I just let him think that you put on a few.


C. CUOMO: Time for the "NEWSROOM" with Carol Costello -- Carol.


CAROL COSTELLO, CNN ANCHOR: You've just made every woman in America very angry, Chris Cuomo.

Kate you look beautiful.

PEREIRA: I was going to support you for a second there.

BOLDUAN: I love you Carol. Thank you.

C. CUOMO: That's all right.