American Morning

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April 24th, 2009
09:17 AM ET

McCain warns against torture prosecutions

 Sen. John McCain disagrees with any possible prosecutions over the release of Bush-era torture memos.
Sen. John McCain disagrees with any possible prosecutions over the release of Bush-era torture memos.

The Defense Department will release "a substantial number" of photographs of alleged prison abuse in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to the American Civil Liberties Union.

The new photographs could change the course of the political uproar over allegations of torture during the Bush era. Yesterday, Attorney General Eric Holder went before Congress and weighed in on holding accountable the people who approved techniques like waterboarding.

“I will not permit the criminalization of policy differences. However, it is my responsibility, as the attorney general, to enforce the law. It is my duty to enforce the law. If I see evidence of wrongdoing, I will pursue it to the full extent of the law.”

Former Presidential Candidate and Senator John McCain (R-AZ) has called waterboarding “torture” in the past, but he disagrees with prosecuting any former Bush administration officials. He spoke with Kiran Chetry on CNN’s “American Morning” Friday about any such prosecutions, saying they would set a “terrible precedent for the future.”

Kiran Chetry: What do you say to the Bush administration officials who call waterboarding “enhanced interrogation” and say it doesn’t cause any real harm?

John McCain: Well, I disagree. And that’s why we passed a thing called the “Detainee Treatment Act,” which prohibits cruel, inhumane, or degrading treatment. And the Geneva Conventions, which is for the treatment not only of uniformed but also enemy combatants, prohibits such treatment as well. But the point is, now, it's time to move on. The president went to the CIA and said people who were engaged in that would not be held responsible... We should move on. And to go back and hold people criminally liable for their best legal advice they gave to the President of the United States is unacceptable to me.


Filed under: Politics
April 24th, 2009
08:00 AM ET

Army of volunteers saves lives with clipboards, high spirits

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Breast cancer survivor Andrea Ivory is on a mission to educate Florida communities about the disease, one door at a time."]

WEST PARK, Florida (CNN) - "We are an army," says Andrea Ivory of the group gathered with her early on a Saturday morning.

Armed with clipboards, leaflets and high spirits, the energetic Ivory leads them into the neighborhood, where they start knocking on doors. The mood is lighthearted, but their mission is serious: to save lives, one house at a time.

They're volunteers from the Florida Breast Health Initiative, or FBHI, and they are waging war against breast cancer. It's an effort started by Ivory, 50, herself a survivor of the disease.

Every weekend in the spring and fall, she and her volunteers - who include college students, senior citizens and suburban moms, all wearing matching T-shirts - fan out across low-income communities in southern Florida, educating women about breast health.

They especially seek out uninsured women age 35 and older, who statistics show are twice as likely to be diagnosed with late-stage breast cancer, and thus more likely to die from the disease.

Keep reading this story

Filed under: CNN Heroes
April 24th, 2009
07:00 AM ET

Fast Forward

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Here are some of the stories that will be making news later today:

At 1:30pm ET, President Obama will speak about student loans and higher education. He'll specifically focus on how hard it is for many students and families to get a loan for college.

At 10am ET, former Vice President Al Gore will be talking climate change on Capitol Hill. The House Energy Committee has been focusing on the environment all week, examining energy legislation proposed by House Democrats in a new climate bill.

And Centcom commander General David Petraeus appears today before a House appropriations committee at 9:30am ET. He'll discuss supplemental funding for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. It's likely he'll cite the spiraling cycles of violence in Afghanistan and Pakistan to bolster his case.

Filed under: Fast Forward
April 24th, 2009
06:00 AM ET

What's on Tap – Friday April 24th, 2009

Here are the big stories on the agenda today:

  • Breaking now... The Defense Department will release "a substantial number" of photographs showing alleged prison abuse in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to the American Civil Liberties Union.
  • Taking swipes at fees.  Credit card companies are receiving millions of dollars in bailout money but they still nickel-and-diming customers to death.  We want to hear your thought about the fees on your monthly bill.  Call 877-MYAMFIX and share your outrage.
  • Terror gaining ground.   Pakistan on Thursday sent a small number of paramilitary troops to the Buner district, which was taken over by Taliban forces in recent days. The response by the Pakistani government comes one day after Washington said Islamabad gave in to the militants by agreeing to their demand to impose Islamic law in the region, and that Pakistan faced an existential threat to its existence if it failed to react to the Taliban threat.
  • FAA: the bird strike files.   The Federal Aviation Administration is reversing its course and said it will publicly reveal its records on bird strikes. The FAA said it will make its entire Bird Strike database available on a public Web site today, and is withdrawing a proposal to keep some data confidential. The FAA had argued that protecting certain information, such as the names of airlines and airports involved in bird mishaps would encourage airlines to participate in the voluntary reporting program.
  • White house training.   The first lady's take on the new White House puppy? He's "crazy." Michelle Obama says "Bo" the Portuguese Water Dog loves to bark and play… and also likes to chew on people's feet. Mrs. Obama says she spends lots of time walking and training Bo, the energetic six-month-old pup who arrived at the White House last week as a gift to the Obama daughters.   Mrs. Obama gave her update on Bo during a White House program Thursday marking the annual “Take Your Child to Work Day.”
  • Plus Size Teenwear.  For years overweight teens had nowhere to shop. Not any more.  The latest fashion?  Plus size clothing for teens.  Target and Forever 21 are tapping into a new growth market that is pleasing some teens and marketers but angering nutritionists.  Is this a plus or minus?

Filed under: What's On Tap
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