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CNN SATURDAY MORNING NEWS
Jerry Sandusky Guilty; Health Care Decision Looms; California Proponents of Proposition 29 Concede Defeat
Aired June 23, 2012 - 09:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
RANDI KAYE, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, everyone. I'm Randi Kaye. It is 9:00 on the East Coast, 6:00 a.m. on the west. Thanks for waking up with us.
Our top story this morning is Jerry Sandusky. Late last night, the jury returned the host of guilty verdicts. In all Sandusky was found guilty of 45 of 48 counts, all those counts are related to sexual abuse of 10 young boys. After the verdict Sandusky's bail was revoked and he was led away in handcuffs. He's now being kept in protective custody away from other inmates. Sentencing for Sandusky is expected in about 90 days. The felony convictions could land him in prison for the rest of his life.
CNN national correspondent Susan Candiotti is live in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania, this morning. Susan, good morning to you. We know the verdict. But talk to me a little bit about the reaction after that verdict outside the courtroom.
SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: You know, outside the courthouse, the area where I'm standing was filled with people from this community who had come out here to hear and see what happened. Most of them were cheering. I talked with one woman in the crowd who said, "You know, I do not wish things - bad things on people, but Jerry Sandusky did very bad things." You also had a lot of people out here who were victim advocates. They see this verdict as not only a vindication for victims of sex abuse but also an opportunity to encourage others who may also be victims not to feel ashamed and come forward and tell their stories, too. Randi.
KAYE: And what about these three not guilty verdicts. He was convicted on 45 of the 48.
CANDIOTTI: That's right. Quite a commanding decision by the part of this jury. The three involved one involving an incident that Mike McQueary witnessed involving Jerry Sandusky in the shower with a little boy. And while they found the defendant not guilty of one felony count, they did find him guilty of another felony count in that case. And some of the others were also downgraded to a misdemeanor. But I think what this indicates is how carefully this jury went down the list of charges. 48 of them they had to consider, Randi, and very carefully made their decision.
KAYE: And Matt Sandusky, who is Jerry's youngest adopted son, he also alleged abuse, but he didn't testify, though he said he was willing to. Do you think that still had an impact? CANDIOTTI: I think it did publicly until this time. Matt Sandusky, that adopted child, had stood behind his father, but then he came forward and talked to prosecutors and said he wanted to testify for them. They kept him in their back pocket to use as a rebuttal witness if Jerry Sandusky took the stand. Well, the defense found out that Matt Sandusky was going to be a witness for the prosecution. So that is a key reason why they didn't put Jerry Sandusky on the stand, though he wanted to tell his side of the story. But that could have been a very devastating follow-up if prosecutors had put his own son on the stand to alleged that he, too, had been abused.
KAYE: Yes, certainly more stories of abuse after listening to all of those victims as well.
Susan Candiotti, thank you very much.
So the question is what was it like inside the courtroom. Earlier I talked with "In Session's" Jean Casarez about what she saw as those verdicts were read.
JEAN CASAREZ, "IN SESSION" CORRESPONDENT (on camera): But I think the emotion that caught me was an empty bench that was in the courtroom until almost the very last minute and three women sat on that bench. I didn't recognize them. Then all of a sudden, I looked, and there was victim number six, who had come and sat in the middle of those women. That is the accuser from 1998, the very first young man that stepped forward because his mother called the school and authorities. He held the hand of his mother, who was the woman who was in the seat before him so tightly. And he was - through the verdict. When the counts were read, she sobbed in silence and his eyes just filled with tears. He was the lone victim in that courtroom last night but so emotionally affected.
KAYE: Part of my conversation there with "In Session's" Jean Casarez. We'll have much more on this case and tell you what's ahead for Jerry Sandusky in our next hour.
In Philadelphia, prosecutors calling a verdict there in a child sexual abuse case "historic." For the first time prosecutors brought charges against church leaders for allegedly covering up abuse by priests. Monsignor William Lane was found guilty n one charge of child endangerment. His attorney called it a miscarriage of justice. Lane faces seven years in prison.
And to Egypt now where they are bracing for a historic announcement as thousands of protestors continue to fill Tahrir Square in Cairo. The country's election commission says it will finally announce tomorrow who will be Egypt's first freely elected president. The results of last weekend's presidential runoff were supposed to come out Thursday but they were delayed, and that prompted fears of a power grab of Egypt's inter-military rulers. Vying for Egypt's top job and Islamist and ousted leader Hosni Mubarak's final prime minister. In the U.S., General Motors is recalling one of its best selling small cars. More than 400,000 Chevy Cruzes are being recalled because of a risk of engine fires. The recall covers all of the made in the U.S. between September of 2010 and last month. GM wants to modify an engine shield that could create a fire hazard.
George Washington's copy of the Constitution fetched $9.8 million at auction. That's more than three times the expected price. Washington wrote notes on the copy. It also comes with a draft of the Bill of Rights. The winning bid came from Mt. Vernon's Ladies Association which will put it on display starting next year. Very cool.
All right. From the Constitution to a constitutional question. It is the question facing the Supreme Court as they get ready to rule on health care reform and that individual mandate. But what do real people think about the effects of that decision? We'll hear their stories.
KAYE: All morning we have been putting the Affordable Care Act or ObamaCare in focus. For the next 20 minutes, we're going to talk with Americans about what they hope the Supreme Court will say next week about the law and why. They all come from different backgrounds with different stories and represent the millions of people who will be affected by next week's ruling.
In Tampa, Florida with us this morning is Christina Turner. She's a 45-year-old former health insurance underwriter. And here in Atlanta is Katherine Wells who is self-employed. Katherine, good morning.
KATHERINE WELLS, SUPPORTS AFFORDABLE CARE ACT: Good morning.
KAYE: Let me start with you on this one. You stand to benefit from the Affordable Care Act if it's upheld. You're making about $19,000 a year, unable to afford health insurance. Why don't you qualify for Medicaid?
WELLS: According to what I've found out, you have to either have a dependent child or be disabled in order to qualify for Medicaid. So just being low income is not sufficient.
KAYE: And you had a recent trip to the ER. What happened and how did you end up paying for that?
WELLS: Basically I was lifting a really heavy object and I ended up pulling a muscle in my chest. And so I didn't realize at the time, however. So I was having some chest pains and went to the emergency room. They ran some tests for a couple of hours and sent me home basically saying we didn't find anything. And I expected a bill of $1,000 or maybe $2,000 that I could figure out somehow to pay. But it ended up being $14,000 for a couple of hours of tests.
KAYE: And how did you end up paying it?
WELLS: I had to go through a very lengthy financial aid process with the hospital.
KAYE: Now, you used to have insurance right?
WELLS: I've had insurance off and on over the years. It's been very difficult to obtain each time as far as pre-existing conditions, and which ones to be honest about and how honest to be about them. When I've obtained it, the rates have gone up extremely fast, every six months to a year after I obtained it. So if I obtained it at $100 a month, it will often go to $250 a month within a year or two.
KAYE: Let me bring in Christina now, Christina Turner. You were actually denied - I mean let me make sure I have your story right, you were denied health insurance because of what the health insurance company argued was a pre-existing condition. But that condition was in fact, one, you didn't have and the irony is you should work for an insurance brokerage at the time. So what happened? Why were you denied?
CHRISTINA TURNER, SUPPORTS AFFORDABLE CARE ACT: Well, actually to clarify, I'm a health insurance agent, so I represent - at the time I represented many, many different companies. And I was determined a pre-existing condition after I endured a drug facilitated rape in 2001. And then I found myself without insurance. As a health insurance agent, I've never been uninsured. I immediately tried to get insurance again. I'm an independent contractor, so I have to get individual coverage. So I contacted every company that I knew, and I knew them all, trust me, and I went to all of them.
And I was now determined a pre-existing condition because of the therapy that I was in, which I needed because I met strangers on a daily basis to sell insurance. I didn't leave my house for three months, I needed that therapy and I was on medication as well, antidepressants to help me get over my rape to get me back out there to do my job. All the insurance companies that I contacted said the same thing. They said, "because you're in therapy, we consider that a mental nervous condition, because you're on medication, we won't even consider you for at least a year." And to add insult to injury they wanted me, depending on the insurance company I talked to, to go two to three years of negative HIV tests before they would even consider me. So not only was I a victim of rape, then I was a victim of the system and on the top of that the system was my livelihood. It was a triple whammy. It was horrible.
KAYE: But you do have insurance now, right? How did you end up getting it?
TURNER: The only reason I was able to get it is I ended up getting married a year later and then three years after that -- so I went almost four years without insurance, my husband actually stopped being self-employed because we couldn't obtain it and went to work for a large group. And he had a window of 60 days as a new hire and guaranteed issue basis to add dependents. That was the only way I was able to obtain it.
KAYE: So you probably don't think you would even have insurance if you weren't married? TURNER: Absolutely. I would not have had it. That's why Obamacare is so important because there needs to be awareness that if this is overturned that this will and can happen to people. And it's just not a political issue to me. It's about Americans all being able to have the opportunity to obtain insurance. And I'd like to add that I compared the ObamaCare plans to mine. Not only is it better coverage than I currently have, but it is a lower rate. So it's not like, you know, you get a plan and it's an astronomical rate like all I had. The only opportunity I had at the time was Florida State high-risk pool. Ad that rate was the same cost as my rent. I had to choose between my rent. It was just - go ahead.
KAYE: Christina, just keep it there for one second. Katherine, I want to ask you both to stick around for just a moment. I also want to introduce you to Mark Ivy. He thinks Obama care is a bad idea and I'll ask him why he thinks it's a bad idea coming up.
KAYE: We are focusing on health care this morning with the Supreme Court's decision on the health care reform act expected next week. Mark Ivy joins me now from Indianapolis, Indiana.
Mark, good morning to you. I understand that you suffer from chronic cluster headaches, depression, and lung infection as well. You don't think the Affordable Care Act or ObamaCare as it's often called is a good idea. Why is that?
MARK IVY, OPPOSES AFFORDABLE CARE ACT: Well, there are portions of the ACA that I do believe are quire effective and should be continued. However, with the individual mandate as well as some of the changes with Medicare, those are the issues which I do take issue with.
KAYE: You currently have Medicare, right? So how would that change if the Affordable Care Act is upheld.
IVY: Well, currently it's already started changing. For example, with my part D, they talked considerably about how the prescription drug program that the cost would be lower. However, my co-pays this year have risen from $2 to $4 for co-pays to $4 to $16.
KAYE: And so you think they will continue to go up?
IVY: Oh, yes, I can see it going up. Plus also in 2013 we've already been given a heads up that our Medicare premiums are going to increase. Plus in 2014 they will be increasing. There's also the Medicare fraud fund, which the provides are going to be having to give to, which is going to increase out of pocket cost. They are also cutting down on the amount that's going to be allowed for providers. Which again, that means that providers are going to pass it on to us, so it's going to be part of our out of pocket cost.
KAYE: So is there a difference for your coverage, whether the law is partially upheld even or fully upheld? IVY: On my coverage, it's not going to make as much of a difference as what it would for some people. However, I cannot see where the individual mandate, where that would be something which could be upheld by the Supreme Court. And what has an effect upon Americans everywhere. People I know, their premiums have already risen in anticipation of this continuing to go through.
KAYE: So if you're not a fan of this ObamaCare, what do you think might be an alternative, say, for the mandated health coverage since so many people without coverage end up costing their neighbors and a lot of other people with coverage so much more?
IVY: Well, see, the biggest problem is we're trying to do a one size fits all. That doesn't work. It needs to be very similar to what it is with the Medicaid programs where most of the authority, most of the power, most of the decision making needs to go back to the state, because in each individual region, each individual state, there are certain conditions, certain diseases which are more prevalent in those areas than what they are in other parts of the country, and yet we can't make decisions that make individual citizens in a state. Because right now if this continues forward we've got one size fits all and it doesn't fit.
KAYE: Well, the stage is yours this morning, so do you have a message for the justices at the court or maybe even Mr. Obama at the White House?
IVY: Well, the biggest thing of it is when it comes to the justices, I love the way our checks and balances system works, whether we can take something such as this, which has been made into a monster bill and be able to dissect it and to cut it and I just hope that's what the justices do.
KAYE: Mark Ivy, we wish you well and thank you very much for your time this morning.
IVY: And thank you.
KAYE: Next hour we'll focus on the politics of the health care decision and what it could mean in November's presidential election.
The last ballots are being counted to decide whether or not to increase the tax on a pack of cigarettes. One side has already given up the fight.
KAYE: Checking headlines now. Jerry Sandusky is on suicide watch. He was taken into custody after a jury found him guilty on 45 of the 48 charges against him. All of those charges are related to 10 young boys.
At the top of the hour we'll be talking live to one of Sandusky's attorneys. I'll ask about Sandusky's condition and their possible appeal. We will find out tomorrow who will be Egypt's freely elected president as thousands of protesters filled Cairo's Tahrir Square. The country's election commission says it will finally announce the results of last week's presidential runoff. You're looking at live pictures now from Tahrir Square. Thousands of supporters of rival candidates for Egypt's top job have gathered there. They are demanding Egypt's military rulers give up power.
In California, proponents of Proposition 29 have conceded defeat. The June 5th referendum would have added a $1 tax to a pack of cigarettes. The last late arriving votes are still being counted. But it appears the effort of big tobacco and anti-tax groups to kill the tax has prevailed.
Floodwaters are receding this morning in Duluth, Minnesota. People are finally getting a look at the true scope of the damage. The "New York Times" is reporting the worst flooding in the city's history, costs more than $100 million in damage. It has left sidewalks buckled, and roads washed out. No one was killed in Minnesota but floods is blamed for three deaths in neighboring Wisconsin.
In California, a 16-year-old girl got the surprise of her life during the Oakland game. Ally Pearce threw out the first pitch, and then her dad, an Army Specialist in Afghanistan wished her a happy birthday in this video. But she wasn't expecting her dad to walk out with the team. There he is right behind the players. She started crying tears of joy. Scott Pearce says he's been planning the surprise for six months. He wasn't supposed to be back from Afghanistan until October. How sweet.
It has been the video of the week, and an outpouring of compassion. A grandmother who works as a school bus monitor is bullied by middle school kids. They say horrible things, she tries to ignore them. I talked one-on-one this week with Karen Klein about her harrowing experience. Hear from her in the next hour of CNN SATURDAY MORNING. We'll be back at the top of the hour.
"YOUR BOTTOM LINE" starts right now.