April 14th, 2008
09:33 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 4/14/08

Breaking news tonight, for the first time in 4 years the gates are open and CNN is inside the polygamist Yearning for Zion ranch. Some of the 139 women who voluntarily left during the raid are now returning. And they’re coming back without their children. We’ll hear from one mother who hasn’t seen her children since authorities removed 416 children, saying they were in imminent danger of abuse. But is it necessary to separate mothers from their children? Legally, how long can they be separated?

Gary Tuchman is covering this story from Colorado City in Arizona, where thousands of FLDS followers held a rare meeting to learn what has happened to family members in Texas.

And, “bitter-gate” continues. As the Pennsylvania primary draws closer, Sen. Clinton vies for the working class and rural vote by talking about guns, drinking beer, and calling her opponent elitist.

And be sure to check out our new live web camera from the 360° studio. The shot features a behind the scene look at the set. We’ll turn the camera on at 945p ET and turn it off at 11p ET. LINK TO THE BLOG CAMERA

We’ll start posting comments to this blog at 10p ET and stop at 11p ET.

Filed under: Live Blog
soundoff (361 Responses)
  1. Megan Dresslar

    Yes, I agree with bloggers, I am not involved talk FLDS........ I don't like FLDS at all.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  2. jerrid

    Mr. Cooper,

    I just wanted to say that I agreed with your reaction when the mother from the YFZ ranch compared the YFZ ranch situation to that of the Jews during the Holocaust.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  3. Renee

    When I was in college I had an internship and worked with a women whose son was in a cult. It was hard breaking. Kathleen sounds very programmed tonight. She is scared too. No one wants to be separated by her children.

    Women get the story from women. David and Anderson is great but if CNN is in then the ladies need to talk with you Erica one-on-one, mom-to-mom.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  4. Dan in Bama

    They feel like they're being treated like the Jews in the Nazi concentration camps..... PLEEEEASE!!! She's appearing on live TV! She's able to voice her opinions....to compare her situation to that of the thousands upon thousands of people who were savagely abused and murdered completely speaks of her level of intelligence and the brainwashing that goes on behind those walls!!!

    April 14, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  5. Tracy

    That woman looks like an apple doll. Too much inbreeding going on in that compound, IMO. And just where did she get that college degree? AC, you crack me up, I could not have kept a straight face asking her some of those questions.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:16 pm |
  6. Kathy

    Singhb, are you serious?

    April 14, 2008 at 10:16 pm |
  7. laura

    Hey Anderson! welcome back it is really nice to see you!

    April 14, 2008 at 10:16 pm |
  8. EJ - Ohio

    I am good – I think 🙂 – How are you Megan? Thanks for asking.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:16 pm |
  9. Jo Ann, Ohio

    If someone is forced to escape from a religion it is a cult.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:15 pm |
  10. Renee, Ontario

    Was that woman reading from cards? Her vocals appeared to be very monotone and she was avoiding eye contact with the camera as well...something doesn't bode well there...

    April 14, 2008 at 10:15 pm |
  11. Derrick

    I wonder what are they going to do if they don;t get there kids back?

    April 14, 2008 at 10:15 pm |
  12. EJ - Ohio

    The lawyers probably told her to add in the Holocaust comment

    April 14, 2008 at 10:15 pm |
  13. Ara

    This is real creepy! Yikes!!!!!

    April 14, 2008 at 10:15 pm |
  14. Jordan, NC

    I'm sorry, I know that everyone has their own right to practice their own religion in this country, but as soon as you throw in sexual abuse to underage children is not only crossing the line but jumping over it and spitting on it. I dont understand how anyone can defend themselves on the side of the polygamists.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:14 pm |
  15. Dawn T.-Pittsburgh, PA

    U go Anderson 🙂 Great job interviewing the FLDS member.

    Glad you're back.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:14 pm |
  16. Sarah, Atlanta, GA

    I'm wondering if this woman has been brainwashed. She seems so akward and stiff.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:14 pm |
  17. Sara, Oklahoma

    This may be the land of the free, but there has to be restrictions on some things. I mean really! Ridiculous.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:14 pm |
  18. Megan O. Toronto, ON, Canada

    Kathleen was Carolyn snitch......whoa this just got interesting

    April 14, 2008 at 10:14 pm |
  19. Megan Dresslar

    Hi EJ
    How are you doing?

    April 14, 2008 at 10:14 pm |
  20. Melinda

    Wow that interview was intense! Hard to hear but you can hear how brainwashed they are?

    April 14, 2008 at 10:14 pm |
  21. Brian Persaud

    Kathy> Cause if she makes eye contact it'll steal her soul! No no..I'm joking 😀 Levity!

    April 14, 2008 at 10:14 pm |
  22. Saera El Paso, TX

    This Cathleen, does she truly understand her situation?

    April 14, 2008 at 10:14 pm |
  23. Claire in Birmingham, AL

    Props Anderson for calling them out on the rehearsed feel of her answers.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:14 pm |
  24. Teresa, Ohio

    "in the land of the free"? we aint free to abuse children. Sex with children is against the law.

    I gotta admit.... the whole thing is kinda messy.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:14 pm |
  25. Julie San Diego, CA

    Note how Kathleen doesn't refer to her kids by name – just as "her children" – she refers to them as she would refer to property that has been taken from her.

    That says it all. Those kids are better off in the real world, even if it's away from their biological mother.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  26. Kim

    She is comparing herself to concentration camp inmates?

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  27. singhb

    Anderson – you are very insenstive in your questioning and sometimes disrespectful....you didn't really answer her question about if your children were taken away...

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  28. Becca

    Thank you Anderson for putting Kathleen on the spot about concentration camps. I cannot believe she would even compare her situation with the Nazi's treatment of Jews during WWII.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  29. Meghan Houlihan


    Do you think that this lady was just reading a response that someone else was telling her? Why didn't she ever look at the camera?

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  30. Brandi down the bayou.

    OMG. Are u serious? she looks medicated to the max.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  31. Jana, Indiana

    Anderson, that was a great interview that you did with the FLDS member. Your questions were right on target.

    Welcome back.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  32. Kathy, Chicago

    This speech does seem scripted. Her oldest daughter must have been 16 or 17 when her child was born.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  33. Renee

    Sounds like Kathleen is programmed.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  34. MaryBeth

    Oh, dear...now we're as bad as the Nazis? This lady scares me. Why can't she look at the camera? People who avoid eye contact creep me out.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  35. meg

    The woman who is being interviewed about the polygamy in Texas...she says she has a child 18, who has a 10 month old granchild. How old was he child when she became pregnant...aren't they now saying that no minors had sex or were married?

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  36. ericacnn

    Renee, I'd love to interview them... I wonder, though, if the answers would be any different from "Kathleen's". I also wonder who decided this is comparable to the Holocaust

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  37. Jason

    Are you serious...this interview is pathetic. where are the cue cards?

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  38. Lorie Ann, Buellton, California

    Mothers are mothers. They love their kids. I hope the courts can sort out all of this soon. I have the feeling the FLDS will just go underground and be even harder to get to.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  39. Derrick

    She's good. I agree with FLDS: This is religious persecution. Texas needs to find the 16 Y.O. that made the call or back off. Lawyers are smelling blood. These people are going to be rich. They're being persecuted because they're different. Find the 16 Y.O. or prove that rape has occurred or back off.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  40. Andrea from Canada

    Hahahaha....Anderson is awesome! Great questions! She sounds like a robot...and not a very "studied" one...

    April 14, 2008 at 10:13 pm |
  41. Brian Persaud

    I have no idea how Anderson keeps his composure. If I was interviewing her, I could not remain that neutral.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:12 pm |
  42. Saera El Paso, TX

    uh... they shouldn't bring up the nazis

    no way
    just no

    April 14, 2008 at 10:12 pm |
  43. Ara

    Its the land of the free, and not land of child prostitution!

    April 14, 2008 at 10:12 pm |
  44. Carla Ontario Canada

    Hi AC glad your back, hope you had some time to yourself to rest up for the next round in the elections. I think Obama is sinking, he should choose his words more carefully. He comes off as upitty and looking down on people with these comments. Maybe he is the one that is
    "bitter" because he didn't get grand slam win in the primaries. People are now just starting to question his judgement and his words!

    April 14, 2008 at 10:12 pm |
  45. Michelle N San Diego

    I would much rather these children be exposed to firearms than the educational neglect that they suffer in the compound. What about the lost boys that are taken away from their community because they are seen as competition for the old perverts in the cult? Give these children the freedom to choose this lifestyle instead of forcing them to live as baby makers!

    April 14, 2008 at 10:12 pm |
  46. Brandi down the bayou.

    This woman with FDLS is scaring me. I think Texas has done right. There are children being abused in all communities, the fact that the community members see it and allow it and accept it as normal is the most frightening.

    She looks like she has been told exactly what to say. She acts like nothing is wrong, freedom of religion is one thing, but freedom to abuse children who are defenseless is something completely different.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:12 pm |
  47. EJ - Ohio

    Welcome back Anderson – You actually look tired tonight!

    April 14, 2008 at 10:12 pm |
  48. Maureen T

    At least this woman believes in her convictions.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:12 pm |
  49. Jo Ann, Ohio

    Anderson, You made it back in time to cover some breaking news! I hope you wore your sunscreen in Columbia. The program is not quite the same without you!

    Gary has been doing such a great job reporting about Jeffs and the FLDS over the years. I am looking forward to hearing his update.

    April 14, 2008 at 10:11 pm |
  50. Kathy

    That woman is creepy!! Her children will be better off away from her!

    April 14, 2008 at 10:11 pm |
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