Tonight we’re following breaking news on those outrage-inspiring bonuses paid to AIG executives. The payments have set off a national furor.
A short time ago, we got word that 15 out of 20 of AIG’s executives are giving the money back. In a conference call with reporters, New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo said that so far at least $50 million has been returned. Score one for average folks and the power of public opinion. We’ll have all the details for you by air time.
We’ll have to wait and see if the give-backs will quell the outrage that’s still overflowing. Over the weekend, some fuming community groups in Connecticut funneled their anger into action by organizing a “Lifestyles of the Rich and Infamous” tour. The bus took sightseers to the homes of two AIG executives. Randi Kaye went along with her camera crew. We’ll have her report tonight.
What do you think? Was the tour a cheap publicity stunt that crossed a line? Or do the AIG execs, despite being private citizens, deserve all the scrutiny they’re getting? For the record, both of the execs who were targeted by the tour bus had already agreed to give back their bonuses before the bus rolled up. Does that change how you feel about the tour? Tell us what you think.
We’ll also devote considerable time to the government’s plan to move toxic assets off bank balance sheets. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner today unveiled his long-awaited plan to free up banks’ overloaded books. It basically aims to lure private investors, including big hedge funds, to buy up the bad debt by offering billions in low-interest loans to finance the purchases. The government will share the risks if the assets fall further in price. Wall Street seemed to like the plan; the Dow surged nearly 500 points. But not everyone is convinced it will work. Ali Velshi will breakdown the plan for us tonight. We’ll also dig deeper on the raw politics.
Plus, we’ll take you inside Bernie Madoff’s house of cards. We’re learning all kinds of bizarre details about the King of Ponzi schemes. People who used to work at his firm are talking – and the stories they’re telling will turn your head.
We’ll also have the latest on the shootings this weekend in Oakland, California. Four police officers were gunned down by the same killer. Two were shot during a traffic stop and two were hit while pursuing the shooter. Three of the officers are dead, a fourth is on life support and reportedly brain-dead. The shooter, who had a violent criminal history, was wanted for a parole violation. Tonight, there are plenty of questions about why he was on the streets of Oakland instead of behind bars. Joe Johns will have more for us tonight.
See you at 10 p.m. eastern.
Anderson Cooper goes beyond the headlines to tell stories from many points of view, so you can make up your own mind about the news. Tune in weeknights at 8 and 10 ET on CNN.
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