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June 23rd, 2009
01:16 PM ET

Searching for a governor

David Mattingly stands at the end of the driveway to Gov. Sanford's beach house. Nobody is home.

David Mattingly stands at the end of the driveway to Gov. Sanford's beach house. Nobody is home.

David Mattingly | BIO
AC360° Correspondent

Like most people in South Carolina today I'm looking for the Governor.

His staff says Governor Mark Sanford left the state to go hiking on the Appalachian Trail. State officials say he went alone. No Security, no family.

He didn't even tell his wife where he was going. That was Thursday.

Today I went to the Sanford family's house on Sullivan's Island and knocked on the door. I wanted to know if Mrs. Sanford had heard from her husband.

No surprises here...no one was home except a big happy lab running around in the yard. Heading back to Columbia now where the Governor is supposed to be back at work tomorrow.

June 23rd, 2009
01:16 PM ET

360° covers – and makes – news all at once

John A. Torres
Florida Today

The William Dillon story - with a heavy focus on the use of fraudulent dog handler John Preston - is going national this week.

On Monday, a crew from CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360" news show interviewed Dillon and an attorney from the Innocence Project of Florida at an oceanfront hotel. The show, appearing on the "Keeping them Honest" segment, is scheduled to air Wednesday night.

Reporter Randi Kaye asked Dillon, from Satellite Beach, a dozen or so questions related to now-deceased dog handler John Preston, who was discredited in 1984. A television show in 1986 further discredited the Pennsylvania-based dog handler.

Preston's testimony helped convict Dillon of murder in 1981. Dillon spent 27 years in prison before being released last year after DNA evidence excluded him from a key piece of evidence in the case.

Keep reading...


Filed under: Keeping Them Honest • Randi Kaye
June 23rd, 2009
10:46 AM ET

Morning Buzz: A Rose Garden News Conference

Firefighters climb atop the wreckage of two Metro subway trains that collided Monday in Washington.

Firefighters climb atop the wreckage of two Metro subway trains that collided Monday in Washington.

Penny Manis
AC360° Senior Producer

Emergency workers are navigating through wreckage to remove bodies of victims following the crash of 2 Metro subway trains yesterday during rush hour. This accident occurred just before 5pm on an above-ground track in DC near the border with Takoma Park, Maryland.

Dozens of people were treated for injuries at the scene. Officials said both trains were on the same track, headed in the same direction, but the cause of the collision is still unclear. Joe Johns will bring you the latest.

Iranian officials say they have found 'no major fraud' in the disputed presidential election and therefore the results will stand. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will be sworn-in sometime between July 26th and August 19th. How will the opposition react?

The video of a young Iranian woman named Neda who apparently died after being shot has become an iconic image of the violence on the streets. What will be the impact of her death on this reform movement?

FULL POST


Filed under: Penny Manis • The Buzz
June 23rd, 2009
10:46 AM ET

Is Obama's honeymoon over?

Julian Zelizer says some of President Obama's political vulnerabilities have started to emerge.

Julian Zelizer says some of President Obama's political vulnerabilities have started to emerge.

Julian E. Zelizer
Special to CNN

June has been rough for President Obama.

After experiencing enormous success during his first months in office, some of his political vulnerabilities have started to emerge.

As Republicans begin to think about the 2010 midterm elections and moderate Democrats decide how they should vote on Obama's most ambitious initiative, health care, the White House must prevent these weaknesses from becoming debilitating.

The first vulnerability is the tension between the left and center of the Democratic Party. Since his election, President Obama has struggled to navigate the divisions that exist between the liberal base of the party, who were the core of his early support, and moderate Democrats, who were also instrumental to his victory.

At first, the administration relied on good will and political capital from the election to overcome conflicts, such as when Obama agreed to reductions in the size of the economic stimulus package to placate the conservative Democrats and some Republicans despite the objection of progressives.

Keep reading...


Filed under: 360° Radar • Democrats • President Barack Obama
June 23rd, 2009
10:45 AM ET

Dear President Obama #155: Tragedy on the tracks

Reporter's Note: President Obama continues to enjoy great popularity despite eroding public confidence in his economic stimulus plan. Well, you can’t have everything, can you? Nonetheless, my campaign to produce a letter each day for the White House continues unabated…like a bad rash in summer.

Lights illuminate the wreckage as rescuers continue to work at the Metro crash site.

Lights illuminate the wreckage as rescuers continue to work at the Metro crash site.

Tom Foreman | Bio
AC360° Correspondent

Dear Mr. President,

I’ve been following the news of that DC Metro train crash all afternoon and evening, and it has turned out far worse than I thought it would. The last I heard, six people were killed and a good many more hurt. By the time you read this, I suppose the numbers may have changed, but the count really does not matter much. For each person who died, some family has been left in stunned, utterly unexpected mourning. I have covered enough of this type of tragedy to see how hard it hits, and to feel a great deal of sympathy for them.

But I must say I also feel some anger.

I get frustrated when government at any level…local, state, or national…makes promises about what it will do with enormously complex things like the economy, foreign affairs, health care, and infrastructure; and then fails at a basic, simple task. Trains run on tracks. We know where they are going and when. Certainly it should not be that hard to keep them from running into each other. People make mistakes? Sure. I understand that. But a mistake should be a train slamming on the brakes rather violently. Or commuters being held up an extra half-hour because of a maintenance issue. In our modern world of high-speed communications, computers, and the like, mistakes on a city subway line should not involve a catastrophic collision.

FULL POST

June 23rd, 2009
10:36 AM ET

Let's aim for Mars

Buzz Aldrin
Special to CNN

Four decades have passed since the summer of 1969, when Neil Armstrong, Mike Collins and I flew America's first lunar landing mission.

The passage of time has not faded either the memory of that summer or the importance of what we achieved, for our mission was about more than just exploring the moon.

On July 20, 1969, Neil and I were peering out the window of our lunar lander, the Eagle, as it descended toward the lunar surface. The ship's computer was steering us toward a field of boulders the size of cars.

That same computer - with less power than today's pocket calculators - was signaling that it was overworked and dangerously overloaded. Our single tank of fuel was nearly empty as we approached the surface, invisible to us, cloaked in a cloud of swirling dust.

Neil took manual control and flew us toward a smoother terrain. Then, as the shadow of our landing gear appeared etched onto the surface in the gloom, a light on our console flashed that contact had been made.

Keep reading...


Filed under: 360° Radar • NASA
June 23rd, 2009
10:27 AM ET
June 23rd, 2009
10:17 AM ET
June 23rd, 2009
09:48 AM ET

What Obama must do now on Iran

Trita Parsi
The Christian Science Monitor

Tehran is being rocked. Convinced that the landslide victory of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad June 12 was a fraud, hundreds of thousands of Iranians have taken to the streets. Clashes with security forces have left at least 19 dead, according to the official count.

Meanwhile, some lawmakers have turned Iran's seemingly stolen election into a political football with little regard for the repercussions their rhetoric may have for protesters in Iran.

"The president of the United States is supposed to lead the free world, not follow it," Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham said Sunday, echoing the sentiments of many senators and pundits. "He's been timid and passive more than I would like."

Accusing President Obama of weakness may generate some headlines, but it misses the point. A closer look reveals that the president's approach has paved the way for the current stand-off in Iran and that he is supported by those seeking their rights in Iran.

Many have argued that the president shouldn't side with any particular faction in Iran since doing so could backfire. Having the US on your side is not necessarily a good thing in Iran. Washington neither wants to make itself the issue in Iran, nor is it eager to help Mr. Ahmadinejad stage a comeback.

But two more salient points have been lost in the American debate. First, who makes the decision to help – the US, or the people America wishes to help?

Read more...


Filed under: Iran • President Barack Obama
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