Another suspect arrested in Holloway case (Nina Bradley)

Rita is on a well-deserved vacation this week, and we are excited to welcome Lauren Lake as our guest host.  Some of you may know Lauren as an established defense attorney who often appears on our show as a guest.

The new arrest of another suspect in the Natalee Holloway case is getting a lot of attention today both here in the U.S. and abroad.  Guido Weaver, 19, was arrested in Holland this weekend, suspected of helping in Natalee's murder.   Reports say that Weaver worked at the casino in the Holiday Inn where Holloway was staying during her class trip to Aruba.  Those of us who cover this case can only hope this new arrest will help bring justice for the Holloway family, especially as we near the one-year mark since Natalee's disappearance.  We know that Guido is currently in custody and in the Netherlands, and he will be in a courtroom in the Hague tomorrow morning to fight an Aruban request to bring him to the island of Aruba.  As always, we will be covering all of the developments in this investigation, and we hope you will tune in to watch Lauren fill in for Rita.

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The American Spirit: A special night at Ellis Island (Rita Cosby)

I was deeply touched by an extraordinary and patriotic service I participated in  on historic Ellis Island, what was once the gateway for so many foreigners to come to America. As some of you may know, my parents came over to America in the 1950s aboard the famous Queen Mary, back then the voyage would take about a week. My parents left England in December 1955 and landed on New York soil in January 1956.

Andrea Romer / Scott Romer Photo
Rita Cosby with Tom Ridge
On Saturday, May 13, I received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor. The service was so powerful, reminding me how incredible this country is and the sacrifices so many people have made to fight for freedom and opportunity.

Some of the other recipients had incredible stories of heroism and truly exemplified the American dream, leaving their homeland with literally the shirt on their back to come to the United States and become a success not just in business or politics, but also in giving back to their communities.

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Rita Cosby with Siegfried & Roy
There was also another quite emotional moment when Roy Horn, of the famous Siegfried of Roy team, got out of his wheelchair and spoke upon receiving his award. You may recall he was attacked by one of his white tigers in October 2003 and has made few public appearances.

I wanted to share with all of you some pictures from this very special event, which will probably be one of the most memorable events of my life, and a night that truly made me proud to be an American citizen.

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A conversation with John Daly (Rita Cosby)

My producer Andrew Dallos and I have had a crazy 24 hours catching up with the very colorful and controversial PGA golfer, John Daly -- one of the most sought after interviews in the last few days.

I really didn't know what to expect of Mr. Daly prior to my interview…he’s regarded as golf’s rebel, the “bad boy” on and off the green.

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John Daly and Rita Cosby
But in person, he was very polite, extremely engaging, revealing and very refreshing. Daly joined me early this morning to talk about his new book, "My life In and Out of The Rough." In it, he candidly describes his many gambling losses (which he estimates to be $55-60 million dollars), his struggle with alcoholism, and his four marriages…his current wife is serving a five-month prison sentence.

Daly also took the time to answer some of the emails you all submitted.

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John Daly and Andrew Dallos
After our interview, John was kind enough to stick around to sign copies of his book and take pictures with the crew.

He says some fascinating things about his golf game and whether he thinks women should be allowed to compete in the men’s U.S. Open next month.

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Duke: A Defense on the Offense (Rita Cosby)

This week's stunning press conference marked a bold move by the defense in the Duke rape investigation. It was quite a strong statement to have Dave Evans, the newly charged co-captain of the Duke lacrosse team, and other lacrosse players, before the cameras. With his teammates and his high-powered lobbyist mother standing behind him, Evans said he had taken a private lie detector test that "proves his innocence." He also said, seemingly confidently, “I am innocent. Reade Seligmann is innocent. Collin Finnerty is innocent. Every member of the Duke University lacrosse team is innocent.”

Today Evans told his story to the throng of cameras before turning himself in to the authorities. He proclaimed, “You have all been told some fantastic lies and I look forward to seeing them unravel in the weeks to come,” he said,  “the truth will come out.”

This case still proves to have constant twists and constant finger-pointing on both sides. We still don't know for sure what really happened in that lacrosse team house that night in March. In covering both sides of this story extensively, I’ve seen two very different viewpoints of what may have occurred. And after today’s press conference, it seems as if the two sides are as contradictory as ever.

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Women for Women (Rita Cosby)

This week I was fortunate enough to participate in such an inspiring event that focused on incredible women who have motivated great change in American history. I interviewed Karenna Gore Schiff about her new book on nine dynamic American women for the GE Women's Network Forum...and not only did I come away from the event inspired by Karenna herself, but I was also so happy to see how many women showed up to support each other and talk about issues facing women in the world and workplace.

I was really surprised to learn how many still fairly unknown women throughout history have played key roles and were truly silent warriors fighting against all odds. One of the women that Karenna talked about was Ida B. Wells who fought against lynching and was even jailed herself to fight against the cause. She also talked about Mother Jones, who made a tremendous impact in the labor movement, despite the fact that her own husband and four young children had died from yellow fever. These women, still obscure to the average American, were real heroes, especially at a time when there were few women in leadership positions.

After our discussion on the stage, so many of the women in the audience were able to stay for the reception and discuss issues in more depth. It is just so encouraging to see camaraderie among women, all encouraging each other, in an organization like this. I always believe the key to success is helping others succeed as well, and this event truly epitomized that spirit.

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Human fish bowl in NYC (Rita Cosby)

Interviewing David Blaine last night was one of the most unusual and extraordinary interviews I’ve done. It’s a real show of mind over matter…but it’s amazing he’s still alive.

Our producer, Andy Dallos, was on site for the segment on Lincoln Plaza in New York City, and shared some of his observations when he first got there and Blaine was sleeping in the tank:

“It’s a bizarre sight, hundreds of people are waiting to go up a ramp and look at him. He’s currently on his back with his feet up against the sphere and the water’s bubbling up. According to his PR person, he’s sleeping.”

When Blaine woke up, Andy filled us in:

“He’s wearing gloves and a thick helmet attached to an oxygen source, and there’s a camera attached to his helmet. He doesn’t have a shirt on, and there are lots of contraptions coiled around his waist. The doctor here says he’s already lost ten pounds probably, but already a hundred thousand people have come by to see him. This is definitely bizarre looking and strange, but it’s exciting.”

David Blaine appears to sleep at the bottom of the tank.
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David Blaine appears to sleep at the bottom of the tank.
Blaine: Bubble boy?
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Blaine: Bubble boy?
Andrew Dallos, producer,  'Live & Direct'
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Andrew Dallos, producer,  'Live & Direct'

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Back from the March (Rita Cosby)

I’ve just returned from a massive march and rally for immigrants’ rights. There are demonstrations taking place all over the country, in almost 75 American cities, but I’ve just spent several hours with marchers who began filing in to New York City’s Union Square to protest through the streets of the Big Apple.

I was surprised to see how many people were not afraid to admit on-camera to me that they were illegal immigrants…and to see people who came from all walks of life and from so many countries. It was also amazing, that for a rally with thousands upon thousands of people, it was extremely organized and orderly. No one was pushing or shoving, and even though it is a contentious issue, people were extraordinarily respectful to each other in a show of solidarity.

Amidst the crowd, there were a few celebrities and notables, like  actress Susan Sarandon, Reverend Jesse Jackson, and Al Sharpton. They were articulate as to why they think eleven to twelve million people should not be sent back to their countries. But most compelling of all, were the heartbreaking stories of people who were experiencing such intense poverty that they came to America to simply put food on their family’s table. No matter how you feel about the border issue, as there are strong arguments on both sides, you cannot help but hope these people find a better life wherever it is.

Rita talks to Jesse Jackson
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Rita talks to Jesse Jackson
Rally in Union Square, New York City
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Rally in Union Square, New York City

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