The Long Island Power Authority is blamed by the New York governor and others for failing to restore power after 12 days. What's taking them so long? Anderson Cooper is Keeping Them Honest.
CNN's Deb Feyerick reports on the Rockaways, a neighborhood in Queens, New York without electricity 12 days after Sandy. New York Governor Cuomo says the Long Island Power Authority "should be held accountable for their failure" to restore power to 150,000 homes. Burglary there has increased by 7%, police say. One resident worried about defending the belongings he has left tells CNN "They just forgot about us."
Anderson Cooper speaks with the executive director of international aid organization Doctors Without Borders. For the first time, they've set up medical clinics in the U.S. Their volunteers are helping victims of Superstorm Sandy at several locations in the New York area.
"We learned our lessons from Katrina when we thought the medical needs would be covered, and when we realized there were gaps it was too late for us to react," says Sophie Delaunay.
She tells Anderson the most challenging place right now is the Rockaways in Queens where people who need help are homebound in high-rise apartment buildings and have had little contact with the outside world since they lost their electricity. The group is helping with a variety of needs, but 60% of the consultations are to assist with prescription refills.
After Sandy, a Staten Island resident says he's in survival mode, living without electricity and patrolling his block for robbers. He stays out each night to guard his community. "I want to protect what little we have," Joe Ingenito tells Anderson Cooper.
Ingenito has lived there for 20 years and plans to rebuild. Asked what it's like to see his neighborhood in shambles, he says, "It breaks my heart."
David Frum and Mary Matalin argue the idea of a damaging GOP echo chamber, which Frum says contributed to Romney's loss.
Last week Gary Tuchman reported on the dramatic events that led to the death of two young boys on Staten Island, New York during Superstorm Sandy. Brandon and Connor Moore, ages 4 and 2, were swept from their mother by powerful floodwaters. Their bodies were found three days later near the place where they were last seen alive.
The tragedy is compounded by claims from their mother, Glenda Moore, that she tried desperately to seek shelter in a man's home after her SUV was damaged, but he wouldn't allow them to come inside. The man in question denies that he saw the family, but claims a man asked him for help during the storm and he didn't provide assistance.
The brothers were put to rest today in a single coffin during a funeral at St. Rose of Lima Church in Brooklyn, New York. Mrs. Moore and her husband Damien Moore were inconsolable.
Tonight, Anderson Cooper will honor their memories and the joy they brought to their family.
If you'd like to make a donation to contribute to the costs of the funeral, visit the website set up by a friend of the Moores.
What everyone’s talking about:
President Obama urged lawmakers today to pass tax hikes for the wealthy in his first public comments since winning Tuesday’s vote. However, House Speaker John Boehner said raising tax rates will “slow down our ability to create the jobs everyone says they want” in a news conference today. With less than a week since Tuesday’s election, the conversation about the fiscal cliff sounds a lot like last year’s and both parties seem unwilling to compromise. We’re Keeping Them Honest. Anderson spoke with outgoing Republican Senator Olympia Snowe, a moderate who’s tired of the infighting and says Congress is obligated to solve problems. CNN’s David Gergen, Gloria Borger, and Mark McKinnon discuss the consequences of the partisan gridlock and what Washington needs to do to avoid another recession.
Anderson also looked at what’s next for the Republican party post-elections. CNN’s Alex Castellanos, Ari Fleischer, Erick Erickson, and Republican Strategist Kristen Soltis discuss what lessons the GOP can learn from Mitt Romney’s loss and the party’s message going forward. Republican Senator Lindsey Graham says his party is going in the wrong direction and its main hurdle is immigration reform. And on the party’s extreme right, CNN’s Gary Tuchman looked at the future of the Tea Party following the 2012 elections. Plus, CNN’s Ari Fleischer and Van Jones talk about the party’s losses during the recent election and how both major parties can learn from the tea party’s strengths and weaknesses.
Reporter's Note: President Obama’s CIA Director quit this afternoon, just as I was writing my daily letter to the White House.
Dear Mr. President,
Just last week I was discussing with a friend how few scandals have plagued your administration. Sure, you’ve had a few low-lying dustups that have not looked particularly good, but few things with genuinely sharp teeth have appeared to threaten the reputation of your team. Republicans probably disagree with that assessment, but as I sit here I can’t think of anything poisonous.
Mind you, and with no offense, I don’t particularly attribute that to anything except luck. Most presidents, I have faith, try to pick out good people with whom to work. And yet, invariably, sooner of later someone strays into something less than savory and the Chief Executive is put in the difficult position of dealing with it.
And now here comes the scandal and resignation of your CIA Director David Petraeus, just at the end of your re-election week. Talk about spoiling the party. All things considered, I suppose you’re happier having it happen now than you’d have been if happened a week ago, but it can’t be pleasant either way.
I feel terrible for his family. People do foolish things all the time, but when they sit in high places the repercussions can sometimes seem much worse than they might be otherwise. The emotional pain, I am sure, is the same, but the scale of the embarrassment is much more grand. Despite a lifetime of honored work, he will now be known in large part for a big mistake at the end of his career. And despite decades of being married, his wife will now spend the rest of her life with the nation knowing he was untrue.
That’s hard for everyone, including some people who in many ways were not at all involved…like you. So I hope for all involved that the most painful days pass quickly.
Call if you want to talk.
Tonight Anderson Cooper will be live from Staten Island, the New York borough with the highest number of fatalities from Superstorm Sandy. Already reeling from the powerful winds and flooding, the nor'easter brought snow and freezing temperatures this week, along with new hardships for the community.
It was 11 days ago that Sandy destroyed homes and lives in the Northeast. When the floodwaters receded, people were desperate to pick up the pieces, where possible, and return to normalcy. Power came back gradually to homes and businesses in Manhattan and New Jersey, but there are still hundreds of thousands in the dark.
Some storm victims went to shelters, others to stay with family and friends, and there are also people like the Camerada family who are afraid to go. They don't want to risk leaving their Staten Island house vulnerable and attractive to looters who could rob them of everything they have left.
Anderson will talk with New York City Councilman and State Senator-elect James Sanders about why it's taking so long to restore power. Do electric companies like Con Edison and the Long Island Power Authority have requirements that are too difficult for those hit hardest to meet before they can get their electricity back?
In Colombia, one in five girls age 15-19 is or has been pregnant, nearly triple the U.S. rate.
And in the city of Cartagena, where one-third of residents live in extreme poverty, many of these young moms don't have a chance to improve their lives.
But Catalina Escobar is working to change that through her foundation and its teen mothers program. Her group aims to teach young women how to support themselves and their children, and since 2002, Escobar has helped empower more than 2,000 teen moms.
CNN asked Escobar for her thoughts on being chosen as one of the top 10 CNN Heroes of 2012.
CNN: What do you hope this recognition will mean to the Juan Felipe Gomez Escobar Foundation?
Catalina Escobar: This award means a great deal to me and to the foundation. It is the most effective and quickest way to tell everyone around the globe that in Colombia, we can do serious philanthropy, where our models really work to make social transformations.
But we also want to show that in a little corner of Colombia, there is a great social inequality and despair like happens in India, Africa or Haiti.