May 27th, 2008
09:04 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 5/27/08

A political gaffe from Barack Obama. Yesterday he said this: "I had an uncle who was one of the - who was part of the first American troops to go into Auschwitz and liberate the concentration camps." Today, we know this is not exactly true. What did he mean to say? How big of a deal is this? We'll find out from the best political team on television.

Former White House spokesman Scott McClellan has a new book coming out and it has some serious charges like allegations that President Bush relied on "propaganda" to sell the war and Karl Rove and Lewis "Scooter" Libby, "had at best misled" Scott McClellan about their roles in identifying CIA operative Valerie Plame.

Out on the campaign trail this weekend both McCain and Obama spent quite a bit of time talking about Iraq. How do their views compare to those on the ground? We'll have a reality check for you.

We want to hear your thoughts so we'll start posting comments at 10p ET and stop at 11p ET.

If you feel like your comments aren't being posted please take a look at our comments post.

And be sure to check out our live web camera from the 360° studio. The shot features Anderson and Erica behind the scenes on the set. We'll turn the camera on at 945p ET and turn it off at 11p ET.

Filed under: Live Blog
May 27th, 2008
05:01 PM ET

Erica's News Note

Erica Hill
360° Correspondent

I think most parents worry their kids will be the odd one out at school. We all know how wonderful and special our children are, and to us they are the best, brightest, most popular kid anywhere – how could anyone not like them? Sadly, the old adage “kids are cruel” is becoming more and more accurate. The latest example makes me want to scream; it is heartbreaking, maddening and utterly mind-boggling.

A Port St Lucie, FL mom doesn’t want her kindergartner back in school after the five year old was voted out of class. According to Mom, her son’s teacher made him stand in front of the class and then asked every single child to “tell Alex why they don’t like him.” Then they voted on whether he deserved to stay or not. Alex was sent packing by a vote of 14-2.

The school district issued this statement: “The St. Lucie County School District received a complaint about a kindergarten teacher, and is investigating the incident to determine if there is any violation of policies, procedures or ethics. The teacher has been reassigned outside of the classroom at the district offices until further action is determined.” (Janice Karst, St. Lucie County Schools)

I’m still ill.

It never ceases to amaze me how low some people will stoop. The very people, who are supposed to help those in need are instead turning innocent, vulnerable children into victims again. Save the Children UK says children as young as six years old have been forced into sex in return for food or money. Who is abusing those children? Aid workers and peace keepers. It is a sobering, chilling report, released today. FULL POST

Filed under: Erica Hill
May 27th, 2008
03:41 PM ET

Beat 360° 5/27/08

Hey Bloggers!

It's time for 'Beat 360°"

Everyday we post a picture – and you provide the caption. Our staff will get in on the action too.

Tune in every night at 10p ET to see if you are our favorite! Can you Beat 360°?

Here is the 'Beat 360°' pic of the day: Vice President Dick Cheney delivers the main address during U.S. Coast Guard Academy commencement exercises, Wednesday, May 21 in New London, Conn.

Beat 360°

Have fun with it.

Make sure to include your name, city, state (or country) so we can post your comment.

David M. Reisner
360° Digital Producer


Filed under: Beat 360°
May 27th, 2008
01:20 PM ET

160+ tornados in less than a week: Why?

KWTV news chopper pilot Mason Dunn describes how he chased a series of tornados in Oklahoma to get some amazing video
KWTV news chopper pilot Mason Dunn describes how he chased a series of tornados in Oklahoma to get some amazing video

Jacqui Jeras
CNN Meteorologist

Incredible! What a weekend.

In all my years as a professional meteorologist and spending my younger years living in tornado alley, I have never witnessed anything near the unpredictable, awesome power of the tornado that crawled across Hennessey, OK on Saturday. I was watching north central Oklahoma for the threat of tornadoes and a warning was issued for Kingfisher and Garfield counties. Next thing I know, my newsroom executive producer is running over telling me to get hooked up, we have live chopper shots of a possible tornado; they want me on the air.

We broke into programming just before 3:30p.m. EDT. Along with our CNN audience, I witnessed a large rotating wall cloud with a slight lowering. It turned into a funnel that gradually lowered to the ground and became a large, violent tornado. It was a classic looking “stovepipe” tornado, meaning it was very straight, up and down. The clarity of the funnel was amazing. It was in the middle of a field. Moments later, it leveled a hog farm. The roof was peeled away and debris was flying everywhere. It was an eerie feeling seeing this happen live, not knowing the status of the people that could have been in the building. A minute later, the tornado lifts. (It turns out, there were 6 employees that were in the barn, who ran into a brick office building and all were uninjured. Most of the pigs and piglets survived, too!)


Filed under: Tornados
May 27th, 2008
12:50 PM ET

Hillary Clinton –Please Exit, with Dignity, June 4

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/05/27/art.clinton.puertorico.jpg]

Katrina vanden Heuvel
Editor, The Nation

Check out CNN.com for Bill Clinton's vent about how a "cover up " is hurting Hillary Clinton's chances of becoming the Democratic nominee. This is a man who has trampled on his spouse's voice every time, in this campaign, that she's found it.

The women of The Nation are the first to deplore the sexism in media commentary this primary season, but a "cover up"?

Hillary Clinton started this race last year as the one to beat–she had the money, the machine and the name recognition that assured her of quasi-incumbent status. And, indeed, she ran as a quasi-incumbent, an establishment candidate in a change- year election. Yes, there were the Chris Matthews and the Tucker Carlsons and the Mike Barnicles and the Rush Limbaughs and the women who were working out their Clinton hatred through Hillary's candidacy.

Read full story...

May 27th, 2008
12:22 PM ET

"A lesson" on Iraq

Barclay Palmer
360° Senior Producer

Now John McCain has invited Barack Obama to go to Iraq with him because "Obama needs a lesson in what is really going on over there."

This from the man lampooned for claiming Baghdad was safe as he walked through a neighborhood specially shut down by a massive one-day influx of U.S. troops, a stroll called an expensive dog and pony show that disguised the realities there rather than revealing them.

On the other hand, many say Obama's plan to pull out troops would leave a disaster. So, does McCain have a point, or is this just pure political maneuvering... or both? Whatcha think...we'd like to know.

Thank you.

Filed under: Barack Obama • Barclay Palmer • Iraq • John McCain • Raw Politics
May 27th, 2008
11:21 AM ET

More progress in Iraq - for real?

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/05/27/art.iraq.soldier.jpg]

Eric Bloom
360° Producer

Over the weekend McCain and Obama continued to mix it up over their visions for Iraq.

As they went back and forth the U.S. government pointed to signs of tremendous progress on the ground to coincide with Memorial Day. U.S Ambassador Crocker said al Qaeda has “never been closer to defeat than they are now.” Military officials also said violence in Iraq has decreased to levels not seen since March 2004.

McCain’s campaign would love to point to the surge’s success on the ground. But we have heard similar claims by the government that wound up being inaccurate. This would be a good time for a reality check on the war.

Filed under: Iraq • War on Terror
May 27th, 2008
07:11 AM ET

Morning Buzz

Morning folks....

There is a primary today..but no one seems to care, poor Idaho...Actually, the Democrats don't care because it is a Republican primary AND we already know who is the Republican nominee ...(The Democrats held their caucus in February, by the way...)

And speaking of the Republican nominee.....John McCain used Memorial Day as a platform to invite Obama, yes INVITE Barack Obama on a trip to Iraq...McCain say "Obama needs a lesson in what is really going on over there...." Do you think Obama will take him up on it? Doubt it...Has Obama EVER been to Iraq? I need to look that one up...


Filed under: The Buzz