May 13th, 2009
09:45 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 05/13/09

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/02/liveblogfinal.copy.jpg]

Tonight, we'll take you live to Arizona State University where President Obama will address the graduating class. His visit drawing controversy when the school refused to grant him an honorary degree, saying he basically hadn't accomplished enough. We'll also look at Pres. Obama's controversial speech at Notre Dame this weekend. Some believe a Catholic university should not honor a president whose views on abortion and stem cell research run counter to church. Text us your questions on this topic. Just put the initals A-C, your name, location and question in the text and send it to 94553.

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Filed under: Live Blog • T1
soundoff (496 Responses)
  1. kayjonescnn

    Looking forward to Gary's piece. Really interesting story. Do you think this kid deserved a second chance?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:35 pm |
  2. Adriana RM Marietta,Ga

    I heard about this ealrier in the week. The kid just has to stay out of trouble, go to school after shooting a another student. Someone should check that judges judicial record.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:35 pm |
  3. Kristen - University Park, PA

    anthonia-california: my comment was responding to a student they interviewed who said Obama was going against Catholic principles, but I wasn't aware Obama was Catholic.

    I am not Catholic, yet I am against abortion still I don't shun anyone who dares to disagree with me.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:35 pm |
  4. Katie

    Sometimes there is no room for diffrences when it comes to a religious institution, especailly a really old one.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:34 pm |
  5. Lori from IL

    @jasmine - I am a lifelong Christian and totally agree with you. I believe a person's religion is personal - and that all the public discussion of religion often hurts rather than helps. It has long been my belief that you can't legislate morality - as much as some people would like to!

    May 13, 2009 at 10:34 pm |
  6. James in TN

    @jasmine I agree, I take it a step further it shouldm't have none.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:34 pm |
  7. Bridget, TX

    I don't think PO should speak at ND, not because I agree with their hypocrisy, but I'm afraid what some crazee may do. Please let him go, speak and get back to the WH safe and sound as soon as possible.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:34 pm |
  8. Megan Dresslar - Shoreline, WA

    I can't buy Sarah Palin's book deal...... I don't think I can read her book.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:34 pm |
  9. Chip

    If the anti- Obama faction's argument is accepted, then Notre Dame, as a University, provides a platform across the board. If that is the case, does Notre Dame intend to put its student body, or more visibly, the participants in its athletic programs to the same scrutiny and standard? Platforms are platforms.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:34 pm |
  10. anthonia-california

    Ofcourse her book is going to make millions, people are curious and are starving to know about her "political life"

    May 13, 2009 at 10:34 pm |
  11. Heather - Spokane, WA

    I wouldnt buy Palin's book if it was being sold for 2.00

    May 13, 2009 at 10:34 pm |
  12. Caroline, Los Angeles

    @laura–yes, that's what you're supposed to believe. But don't ask the students.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:33 pm |
  13. Miss J

    Is there anything that Sarah Palin has not already either told everybody or denied?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:33 pm |
  14. Krasi, Houston, TX

    Nice one Miss J 🙂

    May 13, 2009 at 10:33 pm |
  15. Patti

    First, President Obama is pro choice for women, not pro abortion. Isn't this country all about free speach? Why is Notre Dame trying to squelch the PRESIDENT of the United States. That is why this country is great because of our diversity. AND yes, I am catholic but I am pro choice!

    May 13, 2009 at 10:33 pm |
  16. Adriana RM Marietta,Ga

    Do we really need a book to know more about Gov Palin. Don't we know enough about her already?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:33 pm |
  17. Josiah

    One day these religious fanatics are going to realize that their views are outdated and unfounded. They are a hindrance to the progress of society and are also just downright disrespectful.

    On another note, about the torture photos: how can one be so concerned with seeing these photos that they would risk national security and the safety of our troops? This is the epitome of American ignorance.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  18. krowt

    my cousin is graduating tonight from Arizona...she is republican but is proud to have the POTUS speaking at her graduation...this is the kind of tolerance and cooperation we need from everyone

    May 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  19. Jasmine-Spokane, WA (Spokandyland)

    If Palin banks on Tina Fey's talent, that just shows Palin has none of it.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  20. LisaL - Canada

    ms.palin is getting HOW much for her story ??

    ok. here's the plan. seriously.
    i write an inspirational children's book – i do the illustrations myself – michelle obama loves it and reads it on national television – oprah hears about it and loves it – puts it on her bookclub list – it does really well – i do the book promo circuit – i write another inspiring book for teens – am on oprah's bookclub list again. perhaps i'll even go on a motivational speaking tour with tony robbins. there. there's my retirement fund. ha. (oh – partial proceeds going to a worthwhile cause, of course)

    May 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  21. Regina, Pennsylvania

    What hypocrites! The Catholic Church hid their criminal activity of molesting children. They choose to protect the unborn but not the living. The Church has never been open to the beliefs of others. It is their way or no way. I wonder how many students at Notre Dame favor pro-choice. Should they not be awarded their degrees.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  22. Cervantes, Imperial Beach CA

    Wonderful,evening, Pres.Obama could cancel Norte Dame,send a DvD,or BIDEN

    May 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  23. Fay - California

    It was inevitable that Palin would get some sort of book deal – it's also inevitable that it'll be heavily ghost-written.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  24. gail

    @Erica and Anderson
    Thanks for sharing my views on the show just now.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  25. Sharon

    Why would President Obama even want a ND degree...he has the ultimate Harvard Law Degree...please how arrogant are these people.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  26. Michelle D . Fonthill. Ont

    Catholic teaching does not waver from the truth .The importance of this degree means nothing just a thing they made up for The Presdient to sound important.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  27. Thomas Bohm

    Thanks Erica...
    🙂 Gentlemen..... that word just slipped my mind when thinking about those last two.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  28. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Funny how those saying that an institution of learning should hear all sides. Most universities have very liberal faculties and it's reflected in their choice of speakers all the time. No one seems to complain then.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm |
  29. Jasmine-Spokane, WA (Spokandyland)

    @Miss J.....I guess there goes my shot at Notre Dame.....

    May 13, 2009 at 10:31 pm |
  30. Dawn, IL

    Why isn't the bishop upset with Notre Dame officials? THEY are the ones who invited President Obama. I'm sure the President didn't invite himself....

    May 13, 2009 at 10:31 pm |
  31. Cory

    Im glad he did not either, if the photos were not leaked to begin with we would not be talking about this. That lady was an attorney for the ACLU which means she is only worried about her client. The CIA is meant to be secret and should remain so, not for the public. The world can be a scary place. Are we really ready to investigate every administrations actions after this? Sounds like another useless committee for congress to waste money.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:31 pm |
  32. Sandra Robertson, GA

    Miss J.

    Anderson can't get there fast enough for tornado coverage. Tropical storms and hurricanes are tracked for days before they actually make landfall. At any rate, he doesn't need to take too many chances.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:31 pm |
  33. Bridget, TX

    @Mike, I am the very last person that believe those who disagree with PO is because of race. This is so far from my thought process, I'm shocked that you posed the question. Cheney, McCain, Newt, Romney , goodness most GOPs disagree with PO and his decisions. It never occured to me that their disagreement was due to his race. Their disagreement is due to differing philosophy and their political future.

    I believe the Church's strong stand against PO is race related, because they've honored other presidents who are pro-choice to speak. The only difference, I see between others and PO is race.

    I'm like PO in this if you can give me another reason, why it was okay for other pro-choice presidents but not PO, I'd love to hear it.

    I do hope that I'm very wrong.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:30 pm |
  34. Krasi, Houston, TX

    Jasmine, I believe that religion is personal and should be practiced as one. The direction a lot of religious leaders are going today makes religion look a lot like politics/business etc. No wonder so many churches resemble banks nowadays.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:30 pm |
  35. David, Indiana

    @Krasi, living dangerously would mean releasing those photos and I don't think release of the memos previously hurt anyone. I don't think it's past anyone's ability to balance the concerns of protecting the country and protecting the rights of captive prisoners. After all we don't want to live in a dicatorship like Sukarno's (sp?) Indonesia.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:30 pm |
  36. Margaret R. Mahoney

    As Not re Dame has already had a history of inviting sitting Presidents who supported positions against Catholic theology( Bush and Reagan were pro-death penalty) and GWBush actually signed execution orders, President Obama appearance is certainly OK . The honor given to him is in accord with past practice. There is a small minority of-Catholics that oppose this, the vast majority are thrilled with this honor. Outside agitators are using this opportunity to press their own agenda, disregarding the wishes of the very students who are graduating. Please do not continue to give them a platform.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:30 pm |
  37. Heather - Spokane, WA

    @ Jasmine, I agree with that too.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:29 pm |
  38. laura

    The Catholic church is also against premarital sex and birth control. Am I supposed to believe that the Notre Dame students are all practicing abstinence?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:29 pm |
  39. Sarah

    I jist wonder if every student in Notre Dame Catholic, Athletes and otherwise.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:29 pm |
  40. gail

    By your logic then anyone that is not Catholic should not accept their degrees from Notre Dame because they do not adhere to the Catholic Churche's teachings. Neither do a lot of Catholics. i know Catholics that are for the right to choose , Catholics that take birth control pills. Catholics that supported the war in Iraq. Catholics that support torture. This is just a transparent and flimsy argument.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:29 pm |
  41. Jonathan Wilson

    We tallk about the separation of Church and state. It sounds like this is really separating the church and school.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:29 pm |
  42. Tom

    @Michelle, great point on the supposed virgins deal. Not to mention mention birth control where the last poll I saw of Catholics, a huge majority use it when it is against the teachings of the Catholic church. One thing about the far religious right....they never let consistency get in the way of being one of the hypocritical self-righteous!

    May 13, 2009 at 10:29 pm |
  43. mandy

    Hooray for Obama not allowing the torture pictures. Let's get real about torture in this war. When we're dealing with an enemy who devalues human life so much that it uses human bodies with strapped-on bombs as weapons, then torture has to be redefined!Perhaps if we'd show the pictures of their "soldiers" having water poured on them, they could show the pictures of our soldiers being blown to bits with their soldiers human body parts attached to schrapnel. Would that put this "torture" thing into perspective or not?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:28 pm |
  44. mickey

    thank you Anderson for showing what a hypocrite Donohue is when you ask him if he would ban a jewish person from getting an honorary degree. Donohue is throwing about inflammatory terms such as Poster boy. But Christian Americans are smarter and that is why Obama got more votes than McCain/GOP platform.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:28 pm |
  45. Kristen - University Park, PA

    christine edwards I completely agree. Catholics weren't so high and mighty when the scandal about priests abusing little boys came out. I think they do look silly.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:28 pm |
  46. Miss J

    Notre Dame, Catholic -Pro Life, Guess those people are all virgins too right?


    Plus everyone at Notre Dame is straight. They don't allow gay students to attend.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:28 pm |
  47. Kathleen

    My son attends ND, we are Catholic and are Pro Life, but he feels the seniors' big day is being ruined and the protesters are largely counter productive.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:28 pm |
  48. Michelle D . Fonthill. Ont

    @Anthonia Catholic teaching states abortion is a mortal sin

    May 13, 2009 at 10:28 pm |
  49. Cristina

    How important is an honorary degree? What does it mean anyway? He is not actually getting a degree, I don't think.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:28 pm |
  50. Sarah, Naperville IL

    John Tracy Ellis would roll over in his grave if he knew of this Notre Dame situation

    May 13, 2009 at 10:27 pm |
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