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'Scarborough Country' for April 4

Read the transcript to the Tuesday show

Guests: Robert Bryce, Derrick Kitts, Kinky Friedman, Laura Schwartz, Brad Russ, Andy Kahan, Morris Goodman, Clint Van Zandt

RITA COSBY, HOST, LIVE & DIRECT:  Joe, this is incredible.

JOE SCARBOROUGH, HOST:  It really is, Rita and I‘ll tell you what, especially when you look at the riveting testimony on the Hill of that young man that you talked about earlier in the show.  It just shows you what you a serious problem this is and how it‘s extending into the farthest reaches of our government.  We‘re going to be following through that.  Thanks, Rita, greatly appreciate it.

And right now on “Scarborough Country,” DeLay is out.  So now what?

I‘ll give you the real deal on how his downfall could change Washington. 

And lost innocence, a young teen‘s journey to hell at the hands of predators on the Internet, predators that now include some top government officials.  Where are the people in our government who are supposed to protect our children? And why after he named hundreds of names, 1,500 names in fact, have there only been two arrests? Welcome to “Scarborough country.” No passport required, only common sense allowed.

Thanks so much for being with me tonight.  We‘re going to have those stories in just a minute, plus, a new prediction about how many hurricanes we can expect this season.  Incredible simulations show what could be happen, for instance, this hurricane season may be even worse than last year‘s and we‘ll tell you why.  Unfortunately, our government may not be ready. 

And, later, a brutal murder in what was one of the wealthiest neighborhoods in America with a stunning connection to an infamous case called the milkshake murder.  We‘ll have details later on. 

But, first, Congressman Tom DeLay‘s decision to resign from Congress is sending shock waves all across Washington.  A pitched battle for his seat is already underway with the Republicans cheering and Democrats scrambling to turn DeLay‘s departure into their advantage.  MSNBC‘s Chris Matthews broke this story last night on “Scarborough  Country” and I asked Chris about DeLay‘s demeanor when he sat down with him tonight on  “Hardball.”


CHRIS MATTHEWS, MSNBC CORRESPONDENT: I thought he held himself together pretty powerfully today.  This could have been almost like a concession speech, and yet he was very much defiant. He said if the Democrats win the congressional elections this fall, look out.  They‘ll have the subpoena power. They‘ll use it against the president. 

SCARBOROUGH: You and I have both seen powerful leaders leave Washington, DC, broken men.  Tom DeLay doesn‘t appear to be broken right now, does he?

MATTHEWS: No, in fact, I think you and I know about the role models he‘s looking at.  He says it in our interview. He looks at people like Newt Gingrich who left Congress in not a very pleasant way. He left the speakership in not a pleasant way and as yet has become a real power behind the throne here in Washington, influencing all kinds of things in terms of Republican agenda and may well be a candidate for president.  Tony Coelho, who had problems on the ethics front when he was here until 1989 and he resigned before he got into any big trouble and low and behold he was Al Gore‘s campaign manager in 2000.   So I think he sees - in fact he said so, he sees these men as role  models. 


SCARBOROUGH: Thanks so much, Chris, and now let‘s go to Robert Bryce.  He‘s the author of “Cronies, Oil, the Bushes and the Rise of Texas, America‘s Superstate.”  Thank you for being with us, Mr. Bryce.  This was a fast fall for the most powerful House member in Congress, and from Texas since Sam Rayburn. What happened, what precipitated the fall?

ROBERT BRYCE, AUTHOR, “CRONIES”: Well, I mean, in a word, Joe, it‘s corruption.  I mean, you look at the people around DeLay who have now been indicted or pled guilty and it‘s just a remarkable set of circumstances.  And what is even more remarkable is that DeLay came to power and the Republicans swept to power in ‘94, saying they were the answer.  They were the answer to the Democratic corruption.  Well, I heard what Chris said and you know, that‘s all well and good, but there‘s two quotes that really stand out to me in all of this with DeLay. And the first one was, he said that now he was quitting so that he could engage in the important cultural and political battles of our day.  Well, I want to come back to that, but his lawyer said that a resignation, quote, had nothing to do with any criminal investigation.  Oh, come on.  That‘s just clearly not true. 

SCARBOROUGH: Robert, so, wait, let‘s talk about the political side. 

In the end.

BRYCE: OK, sure. 

SCARBOROUGH: In the end, was the stench of Tony Rudy, Jack Abramoff and others people around DeLay, Michael Scanlon, just too overpowering for this man to  have any chance of winning in a fairly safe Republican district this fall?

BRYCE: Well, look, Sugarland, the district that he‘s in, southwest of Houston is clearly a Republican district.  Look, Texas is a Republican state.  I don‘t expect a major overhaul of the Texas congressional delegation.  Republicans still outnumber Democrats in the delegation two to one.  And so—

SCARBOROUGH: But could DeLay have won his seat, that‘s the question?

BRYCE: Sure, it‘s possible.  Of course, anything is possible, given enough money and so on.  But, look, DeLay quit because he didn‘t want to lose.  I think that that is clearly the case here.  And he can say whatever he likes about wanting to fight the political battles and so on, but I mean look, let‘s talk about the corruption issue for a minute.  If DeLay was in power in Washington, he becomes the majority whip in 1994, what happens during that timeframe? Well, according to the Congressional Research Service, the earmarks for home districts, the earmarks in the Federal budget, nearly tripled  -- more than tripled, I‘m sorry, going from $4100 to over $14,000, costing Federal taxpayers $50 -- more than $50 billion. 

SCARBOROUGH: And you know, Robert, you can also talk about -- 

BRYCE: And DeLay really wants to help American taxpayers, he‘s going to do something about the incredible meltdown, the incredible corruption, moral and fiscal corruption in Congress. 

SCARBOROUGH: Well, Robert, of course you can talk about all the things we promised to do in 1994.  I was a part of that ‘94 class.  We talk about.

BRYCE: I know you were.

SCARBOROUGH: . reforming government. You can see what it‘s led to.  Yeah, we had Dan Rostenkowski before we came in. Now you have all the scandals today, the most earmarks ever before.  We were going against that.  Of course, that‘s all changed.  And things have gotten worse and it‘s hard to tell who the reformers are these days.  Robert, final question, Tom DeLay‘s final battle may have to deal with jail.  His former staffers are going to spend time behind bars.  What is the chance that their boss will join them there?

BRYCE: Well, I think they‘re very good. Just like Jeff Skilling and Ken Lay are on trial now in Houston.  Look, you know, the Republicans have been attacking Ronnie Earl and Ronnie Earl has made some mistakes, there‘s no question.  He‘s the Travis County district attorney and his office has brought these charges against DeLay and against Ellis and Colyandro and some of the other -- 

SCARBOROUGH: Well, Robert, I need an answer. So you think DeLay is going to jail?

BRYCE: I think he‘s going to jail, yes, I do.  And I think he deserves it. 

SCARBOROUGH: All right, Robert Bryce, thank you so much. I greatly appreciate you being with us. 

And the fleeting nature of power is the subject for tonight‘s congressional memo. You know, there‘s Tom DeLay‘s first month out of Congress. It‘s going to be his toughest, that is if he‘s anything like me or other members who get out of town on their own without being pushed.  Even though I left without being pushed out or beaten in the ballot box, tell you what, it was just unsettling at how quickly the phone stopped ringing.  The piles of Christmas cards, well, they were reduced to a few dozen and strangers stopped inviting me to Super Bowls or rock concerts.  In short, I was forced to start hanging out with people who actually like me because who I was, not because of what I was.  

Once you get through that, you stop taking the snubs personally, but what continues to sting is being away from the action, the debates, the caucus meetings, behind closed doors, where matters involving war and peace and the future of America are fought over all in the course of a day‘s work.  Billing hours as a lobbyist may pay more every two weeks, but it‘s a poor substitute for men like Tom DeLay.  The hammer is now going to become a private citizen and he‘s going to have to learn just how quickly power fades overnight, and how so-called friends forget you exist.  And that includes leaders of his own party.  And don‘t expect GOP candidates to shed any tears for Mr. DeLay either.  I asked Oregon‘s majority whip and congressional candidate Derrick Kitts how his party could possibly run as a force for change and reform when Tom DeLay is adding to GOP‘s woes. 

REP. DERRICK KITTS ® OREGON: I think the culture of corruption is spreading itself throughout the entire city of Washington, DC.  We‘ve seen this for the last 10 years, Joe.  We‘ve seen Dan Rostenkowski go to jail.  We‘ve seen James Traficant go to jail. Now we‘ve seen Duke Cunningham going to jail. We‘ve seen the resignation of Tom DeLay.  My opponent himself is a recipient of a $30,000 fine for accepting illegal campaign contributions. I think this culture of corruption needs change. It needs reform.  We dealt with this here in Oregon. We sent one of our own in the Oregon legislature to jail for 10 months for stealing money out of his campaign coffers.  I think we passed reforms in Oregon. I think Congress needs to pass reforms.  They get tough on lobby reform and get tough on campaign finance reform.  Until you do that, you‘ve got to restore the credibility of Congress back to the people, which is whom the Congress represents. 

SCARBOROUGH: And you talked about your opponent, obviously, you‘re going to try to make ethics an issue in your race.  Let‘s face it, you can talk about those issues now more freely now that Tom DeLay is going back to Sugarland, Texas, right?

KITTS: I don‘t know if he‘s going to Sugarland. I think he‘s going to Alexandria, Virginia, is what I read in the “The New York Times” today.  Again, I‘m looking forward to talking about the issues that are facing Oregon—

SCARBOROUGH: You can do that now that Tom DeLay is out?

KITTS: I think it focuses the attention off one person and back to the issues and that‘s where the Republicans are very strong, Joe. 

SCARBOROUGH: All right, Representative Derrick Kitts, thanks so much, greatly appreciate it.

Let‘s go to our all-star political panel.  Kinky Friedman is running for governor of Texas, also here Laura Schwartz, a Democratic strategist and former director of events in the Clinton White House and Pat Buchanan, MSNBC political analyst.  Pat, Republican candidates have to be cheering because Tom DeLay is one more reason why Republicans could be routed at the ballot box this fall. 

PAT BUCHANAN, MSNBC POLITICAL ANALYST:  Well clearly Joe, he was the poster boy of this scandal situation. He got hit in the last couple of days with his former aide got indicted or pushed into a plea bargain.  So I think there‘s no question about it.  The Republican party is going to feel better off having Tom out of there.  I think it‘s better for him, better for the party and as the fella you were just talking to said, they can focus on other things. 

SCARBOROUGH: Kinky Friedman, you‘re a Texan wrapped up in a state wide campaign.  What happened to Tom DeLay, did he forget his roots?  Did he forget Texans?

KINKY FRIEDMAN, RUNNING FOR GOVERNOR OF TEXAS: Joe, you have it absolutely right.  I think he‘s not a bad guy.  I think he got confused. He thought his job was to attack the enemy and his job was to serve the people of Texas.  And that‘s why I say that politics is the only field in which the more experience you have, the worse you get. 

SCARBOROUGH: And Kinky, when you say attack the enemy did Tom DeLay you think the enemy was the Democratic party, right?

FRIEDMAN: Sure.  But the Crips and the Bloods, the Republicans and the Democrats have pretty much become the same guy, admiring himself in the mirror. 

SCARBOROUGH: That‘s the one thing Kinky, when I was in Washington I was shocked how Republicans didn‘t like crossing that aisle even to talk to Democrats, and Democrats were afraid to hang out with Republicans.  Do you find that people out on the campaign trail really connect to an independent candidacy?

FRIEDMAN: Absolutely.  And that‘s why I say musicians can better run this state than politicians.  We won‘t get a hell of a lot done in the mornings, all right, but we‘ll work hard and we‘ll be honest. 

SCARBOROUGH: Laura, talk about how Democrats are going to try to keep Tom DeLay in the headlines between now and November.  Obviously with Newt Gingrich, we found that once the guy left town, he was pretty much forgotten. You couldn‘t use him, but that not going to stop Democratic candidates for trying to bring up Tom DeLay every day, is it?

LAURA SCHWARTZ, FORMER CLINTON DIRECTOR OF EVENTS: Now and it can‘t.  We cannot squander this opportunity.  The last 24 hours there‘s been a lot of political strategy from the Republican side. Now we have to see the Democrats.  They‘re going to try to hit home that Republican corruption is still costing the American people at the pharmacy, at the pumps, in their home energy bills.  With George Bush‘s ratings going down yet again this month, the Democrats have got to solidify and simplify their message at this point on Iraq and national security and ethics I believe in order to really win 2006 and carry through to 2008. 

SCARBOROUGH: Pat Buchanan, we used to have an old saying in the south, I didn‘t leave the Democratic Party, the Democratic Party left me.  And a lot of people are talking about the Republican Party the same way.  I do not recognize this Republican Party that I was a member in 1994.  What the hell happened?

BUCHANAN: It came, you know, they came here to do good and they stayed on and did very well indeed.  They got right into the spending, I think the loss of term limits, Joe. They‘ve run up the biggest deficits in history.  They‘ve balanced no budgets under Bush. They haven‘t vetoed anything. They got ourselves - excuse me, that got us into a war  I think unthinkingly.  They got an immigration bill where the country desperately wants the borders protected and they can‘t get that done.  I think that they‘ve moved too far away from the people on the issues.  I think the Reagan coalition and the blue collar folks, those Reagan Democrats, I think they‘re starting to go home and they‘re going to go home unless Republicans reengage with them. 

SCARBOROUGH: And Kinky Friedman, where do they go? Where is home? Is there a home for reform voters?

FRIEDMAN: Well, I think, not only Bush‘s ratings are dropping, but Hillary‘s are dropping too.  I salute Pat, I think that‘s what Democracy is al. about, is Pat Buchanan and Ross Perot and Ralph Nader and we haven‘t had an independent on the ballot here in 147 years Joe. The last guy was Sam Houston and that‘s how effective the Republicans and Democrats have been in keeping any independent voices out of marketplace. 

SCARBOROUGH: OK, we got to go, but I got to ask a quick prediction, a yes or no.  Will Democrats take control of Congress this fall? Kinky.

FRIEDMAN: I say never re-elect anybody, Joe. 

SCARBOROUGH: Laura? I‘ll take that as a yes. 

SCHWARTZ: Yes, the House, yes the House. The Senate is probably not going to happen. 

SCARBOROUGH: Pat Buchanan, do Democrats take control?

BUCHANAN: They would take the House if voting were today but I don‘t write the president off as a fighter—he will go after them. 

SCARBOROUGH: Pat, yes or no buddy?

BUCHANAN: Yes, the House. 

SCARBOROUGH: Thanks so much to my all-star panel.  We‘ll be back with more “Scarborough Country.”


SCARBOROUGH: We have breaking news involving a stunning arrest at the Department of Homeland Security.  Let‘s go to Washington, DC, right now and check in with Norah O‘Donnell.  Norah, get us up to date with the latest. 

NORAH O‘DONNELL, MSNBC WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT: Well, a deputy press secretary for the Department of Homeland Security, Brian Doyle, has been arrested near here in Maryland tonight on charges of using a computer to seduce a child and transmitting pornography to a minor.  There are 23 charges against him, filed actually by the Polk County sheriff down in Florida who was working with the inspector general at the Department of Homeland Security and Brian Doyle was actually using his government-issued cell phone and giving out his office phone number to what he  believed was a 14-year-old  girl. 

Turns out that this 14-year-old girl was actually an undercover cop with the Polk County sheriff.  He was sending hard core pornographic movie clips to her. He was engaging in sexually explicit conversations online. He was encouraging what he thought was this 14-year-old girl to actually purchase a web cam so that she would send him pictures and so that this 56-year-old man could also send back nude pictures.  Tonight the Department of Homeland Security says that they take this allegation very seriously and that they are cooperating fully.  This individual is not someone who is political, but I am told from a DHS official, that‘s the Department of Homeland Security, that he‘s a career employee, that he had been at the TSA actually and that he‘d also spent some time as a journalist with “Time” magazine.

But the news is that this DHS official is under arrest for trying to solicit images from a child. The Polk County sheriff in a statement tonight is saying his conduct is vile and inexcusable, that many of the conversations he had with the victim are too extraordinary and graphic for public release.  Joe?

SCARBOROUGH: All right, thank you so much, Norah.  Greatly appreciate that update.  And this arrest comes as today in the nation‘s capital, 19-year-old Justin Berry walked into the halls of Congress and he told the committee his frightening tale which plays out every day across America just like it played out with this official in the Department of Homeland Security. 

When he was just 13 years old, Berry got caught up in Internet child pornography, which led to encounters with hundreds of potential child predators.  Berry turned over all the names of those predators, 1,500 to Federal authorities, but it‘s what he said at the end of his statement today that should not only frighten every parent out there, but anger all American  taxpayers.  Take a listen. 


JUSTIN BERRY, FMR INTERNET CHILD PORN STAR: For five years, beginning when I was 13 years old, I operated a pornographic Web site featuring images of myself loaded on the Internet by web cams.  I was paid by more than 1,000 men to strip naked, masturbate and even have sex with female prostitutes while on camera.  I have never been asked by law enforcement about any of the 1,500 names that I provided them.  Some of those who molested me, like Mr. Gourlay and who made all of this possible are continuing to live their lives unaware or uncaring about any government inquiry. I have watched as my former members go online to attack me, boldly proclaiming themselves as my former customers and having no fear that their self disclosure could result in their arrest. And events have proved them right. 

Since I left the child pornography business last summer, I have risk everything to get to tell these facts to persons who care like this committee. It is my hope that Congress will do everything it can to see to it that children are protected and that our law enforcement effort is competent to combat this evil.


SCARBOROUGH: Berry said he and his lawyer turned over all of those names to the child exploitation obscenity section of the Department of Justice who they say let weeks go by with no progress in tracking down those predators.  With me now is Andy Kahan. He‘s with the Houston crime victims unit and also Brad Russ. He‘s with the Justice Department‘s Internet crimes against children‘s task force.  Mr. Russ, let me begin with you.  Why no action when the Justice Department gets 1,500 names of child predators?

BRAD RUSS, JUSTICE DEPT. INTERNET TASK FORCE: Well, let me make it clear that I represent the local law enforcement arm.  The task forces are comprised of agencies throughout the country.  We‘ve had no involvement in this case and as a former police chief and retired police officer myself it would be really inappropriate for me to comment about where this case is going.  I don‘t know the facts, but I can tell that you that the Internet crimes against children task force is involved in these cases and makes arrests daily.  Polk County, that was just mentioned I‘m sure is part of our two Florida task forces. So we‘re involved in these cases on a regular basis, making arrests, seizing computers, protecting kids.  I just did a presentation to 1,800 middle schoolers this morning in New Hampshire today. 

SCARBOROUGH: You know Brad, I‘m glad you talked about seizing computers because it seems to me that time would be of the essence here if a young man gave the  Justice Department, again,  we‘re not talking about you being associated with the Feds in these types of investigations, but if you were to turn over names to people in the Justice Department, 1,500 names of child predators, it would seem that time would be of the essence.  They would need to go to these people‘s homes, get search warrants, go in and seize the hard drives of computers.  If you don‘t do that in a timely manner, the evidence is fleeting, right?

RUSS: Well, we do those types of investigations. We are Federally funded -- 

SCARBOROUGH: I am saying, what if the Department of Justice didn‘t do that in this case, as this young man said before Congress.  Would that not make investigations difficult or not impossible to wrap up?

RUSS: For all I know this investigation is ongoing.  They may have things underway that we all have no knowledge of. 

SCARBOROUGH: Ok, let‘s take it away from this investigation.  I‘m saying, let‘s just say for argument‘s sake, another investigation going on in Wichita, Kansas, delayed a month or two, and didn‘t kick down somebody‘s doors and get a hold of one of these computers, that would hamper the investigation, wouldn‘t it, and allow the child predators to destroy property, right?

RUSS: It would make it more difficult.  Oftentimes though we confer with prosecutors. We look at the evidence that‘s been collected. Sometimes the way that it‘s turned over to us is flawed.  There can be problems with going forward with these cases, but, of course, we‘re very aggressive. 

SCARBOROUGH: Andy Kahan, it sounds like unfortunately tough the Justice Department was not aggressive in this case.  How in the world do you get the name of 1,500 child predators dropped in your lap and then you do nothing for at least a month or two, where you let these child predators go out  and destroy their hard drives. 

ANDY KAHAN, HOUSTON CRIME VICTIMS UNIT: Absolutely, Joe, where is the sense of urgency? Where is our priorities on this and, again, the national outrage.  Why does it always appear that we have to have a child that is sexually assaulted and then killed before we go bonkers trying to find some sort of semblance of justice. 

SCARBOROUGH: But, Andy, I need you to tell me, why would the Justice Department, the Feds, get 1,500 names and sit on it, not go after these people, not seize the computers? Have this kid‘s former clients, these sex predators, basically ridiculing online, saying, yeah, I was a former customer of him. I‘m a child predator.  And, again, saying that without any fear that the Justice Department is coming after them?

KAHAN: Absolutely, these types of predators are playing a poker game, and they‘re winning, they‘re calling the bluff every time.  I mean your network proved it  point blank with your stings on “Dateline,”  “Perverted  Justice” and how many times  have we seen any of these guys convicted and sentenced to doing any hard time?

SCARBOROUGH: OK, why Andy, I got to ask you, again, why, why, why? Why does it continue to happen?

KAHAN: Joe, it‘s our mindset.  For whatever reason we‘re just stuck in this status quo type of system where we‘ve got to broaden our horizons when we‘re dealing with these types of crimes and I don‘t think our system is really conducted themselves or condoned themselves and is looking at these things in some broad-based factual scenarios that we‘ve got right now.  We‘ve got to change the mindset of our system. 

SCARBOROUGH: All right, thank you so much, Andy Kahan, thank you so much Brad Russ.  I greatly appreciate both of you being with us, and, friends, I want you to call the Justice Department.  I‘m going to give you the phone number and I‘m going to give you the name of the specific department later on in the show.  Get a pen out, write it down, and call them up tomorrow.  We‘re going to pressuring them and we‘re going to figure out why they got 1,500 potential child predators names dropped in their laps and they did absolutely nothing about it. 

And still ahead, one of the richest neighborhoods in America is now the scene of a brutal murder.  The victim was wrapped up in money, power and maybe even crime.  And even more bizarre, it‘s not the first time this family has been at the center of violence. 

And, this year‘s hurricane prediction season is worse than last year‘s prediction.  What‘s going on over at FEMA? Are they ready to jump in and take care of the next Katrina disaster? We‘ll talk about that and much more when “Scarborough Country” returns.


SCARBOROUGH:  The weather service is predicting one of the worst hurricane seasons ever.  If it happens, will America be ready?   Will our government be better prepared than last year?  Unfortunately, that answer may not be comforting.  We‘ll talk about that coming up, but, first here‘s the latest news you your family need to know. 


SCARBOROUGH:  Coming up, a shocking murder involving money, power; an international mystery in one of America‘s richest neighborhoods.  And it‘s not the first gruesome crime for this family.

And it‘s going to make you angry.  An eighth grader is in trouble with his school for doing what most people say was the right thing.  He was just trying to follow the rules.

Welcome back to “Scarborough Country.”  Those stories in minutes, but first, new predictions for this year‘s hurricane season is dire.

Some meteorologists now say that highly populated areas like New England, Washington and New York City are overdue for a major storm.  What‘s creating the ominous forecasts?

Let‘s go to our own Bill Karins of NBC‘s Weather Plus.

Bill, it looks like deadly weather may be coming our way again this hurricane season.  Tell us about it.  Why is it happening? 

BILL KARINS, NBC METEOROLOGIST:  All right, Joe.  Before the predictions, let‘s get into why we‘re going to see a similar setup to what we dealt with last season.  And we are watching ocean temperatures, once again, that are ridiculously warm for this time of year.

Down here, south of Pensacola we‘re already seeing water temperatures get into the Gulf of 80 degrees.  And so with the warm water, just like last year, we‘re going to have a similar setup, at least in the beginning of the season.  That‘s when all of our hurricanes came right towards the Gulf and right up the East Coast.

So what could save us is very important this season.  We need strong winds; the southerly jet stream has to increase.  This is what happened during the 1980‘s and the 1990‘s; it didn‘t allow the storms to hit the U.S.  They turn the storms and they deflect them.  We need that setup to develop as we go throughout the next couple of months.

The predictions do look dire, 17 tropical storms, nine hurricanes and five major hurricanes.

Joe, it‘s more of a question of if the hurricanes hit, not if they‘ll form. 

SCARBOROUGH:  And of course, Bill, those predictions are more hurricanes predicted at the beginning of any year than ever before, right? 

KARINS:  Correct.  Dr. Gray said last year there‘d be about 14, there was actually 27.  This year he‘s saying 17.  So we‘ll have to see how accurate these come out. 

SCARBOROUGH:  All right, Bill Karins, thank you so much, from NBC‘s Weather Plus.

And I‘ll tell you, when Bill is talking about the ridiculously warm water in the Gulf, it‘s very frightening.   We saw it all last year as hurricanes came across the Atlantic and into the Gulf.  That warm weather acts like fuel, and that means stronger winds, that means lower pressure, that means more death and destruction on shore.

Are we ready for giant storms to hit, though, America, the northeast and, God forbid, the Gulf Coast again this year?

Here to talk about it, Tim Marshall, a meteorologist and storm chaser, who is part of the Discovery Channel‘s “Perfect Disaster” series, which airs Sunday night at 9:00 eastern.

And also with us, Morrie Goodman.  He‘s a former FEMA official from the Clinton administration.

Tim, let me go to you first.  You heard the ominous forecast.  Does it look like an ominous storm could be heading our way?  Could it mean also that Washington, New York, New England, may be the next target for a killer Katrina storm?  

TIM MARSHALL, NBC METEOROLOGIST & STORM CHASER:  Well, certainly last summer and in the fall, our water temperatures in the Gulf were quite warm.  We‘re talking about 90 degrees Fahrenheit.  This is bath water warm.  And that‘s just the fuel that hurricanes need to form and intensify.  We had two Category 5 hurricanes last year that rampaged through the Gulf. 

SCARBOROUGH:  So what happens if they do, as the “Washington Post” suggests last Sunday, and they go towards New England or they go towards New York or the Middle Atlantic States, states that haven‘t been hit in quite some time? 

MARSHALL:  Absolutely.  In fact, we have to go back quite a ways in order to see when the last major hurricane hit the New England area.

One of the big years of hurricanes was 1938 where Rhode Island, the Providence area was inundated with massive amounts of storm surge.  It could happen again.

In fact, we think that it will happen again.  I can‘t tell you if it‘s going to happen next year, but certainly it‘s going to happen one of these years. 

SCARBOROUGH:  And what‘s the impact if it happens, if something hits New York?  How do you evacuate Long Island?   How do you evacuate Manhattan? 

MARSHALL:  Well, obviously, you can‘t.  I mean, if anything has shown us the dire consequences of evacuation it was Houston in Hurricane Rita.

Imagine all of those traffic jams trying to get people out of the harm‘s way.  You just simply can‘t do it.  So there has to be an alternative, and that would be to, maybe, go vertical evacuation or at least hope that the hurricanes steer clear of the New England area. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Morrie Goodman, it looks like we‘re entering a new cycle here unfortunately that may be with us for quite some time.  Temperatures are heating up in the Atlantic.  They‘re heating up in the Gulf.  It‘s almost bath water temperature already in the Gulf of Mexico, and we‘re not even into spring yet.

Is FEMA ready for another season of storms?   Is the federal government ready to handle the next big crisis better than it handled Katrina?  

MORRIS GOODMAN, FORMER CLINTON FEMA OFFICIAL:  Well, just like “Time” magazine‘s cover said about global warming, be worried, be very worried.  I‘d be worried about this too.  I don‘t think that they are.

I think that people ought to be asking the question, “Where are the plans?  I want to see these plans.  I want to see evacuation plans.  I want to see the plans for moving people out of harm‘s way.  I want to see the plans for housing people if they‘re homeless.”  Nobody asked the question.  People are apathetic about this until it‘s a little bit too late. 

SCARBOROUGH:  OK, Morrie, but how can they be apathetic when we had Hurricane Katrina and the worst hurricane season ever last year?  And it looks like, by these predictions, that next year‘s going to even be worse? 

GOODMAN:  Well, it‘s the same thing in Louisiana.  Where are the levees?  What‘s the status of the levees?  What‘s the status of evacuations?

And the same thing is in Homestead, Florida, with Hurricane Andrew. 

Where are the plans for south Florida?

Craig Fugate, the emergency manager of Florida, Governor Bush‘s emergency manager, a great emergency manager, but people need to ask the questions, “Where are the plans and what are we supposed to do?”  The public needs to know these things.

SCARBOROUGH:  Well, Morrie, let me ask you a question.  Earlier, we were talking about this young man that gave the federal government 1,500 names of child predators, and I had a guest on, telling me it was a disgrace, it was a shock.

And I asked him why.  I‘ve got to ask you this same question.  Why would our federal government not be ready, what, eight months, nine months after hurricane Katrina, after the worst hurricane season ever?  What‘s broken in Washington, D.C.?  

GOODMAN:  It starts at the very top.  And we have a secretary, the very top person who‘s in charge of disasters in this country, who has no pedigree.  He‘s a captain without a license.  He does not have a rudder. 

SCARBOROUGH:  You‘re speaking about?  

GOODMAN:  I‘m speaking about Secretary Chertoff, probably a wonderful lawyer, a wonderful judge, but he has no pedigree in emergency management.

We don‘t have an emergency manager, like James Lee Witt, who was as proactive as you could possibly be, who never asked permission to do anything.   He charged ahead.

In Hurricane Marilyn, in the Virgin Islands, when there were 400 or 500 people trapped on that island, when they had C-17‘s flying in with relief supplies, he ordered the military to put those people on those planes and fly them to safety.

And when supplies weren‘t coming, he called the Pentagon and he said, “I want those supplies here and I want them now.”  We need more people who are charge. 

SCARBOROUGH:  You know, Morris, I worked with James Lee Witt going through four hurricanes in my home district when I was Congressman.  You‘re right. 

GOODMAN:  I know, I toured with you and James Lee. 

SCARBOROUGH:  That‘s right.  And he was a very hand‘s on operator. 

And he could get whatever he wanted. 

And I had a guest coming on from the Department of Homeland Security who canceled at the last minute because of the crisis that they‘re enduring right now with this man who‘s been arrested for possible child pornography.

But I asked him, Morrie, I asked this gentleman from the Department of Homeland Security, why nobody wants to be director of FEMA? 

GOODMAN:  And I‘ll tell you the... 

SCARBOROUGH:  Tell me the answer. 

GOODMAN:  Yes, I‘ll tell you.  I know most of those people who were offered the job, Dr. Richard Andrews, a former emergency manager of California; Craig Fugate from Florida, Bruce Baughman, the president of the National Emergency Manager‘s Association and now the director of Alabama.

The reason why is because they want the FEMA director to be a desk jockey.  They don‘t want him to be out in the field, like James Lee Witt was.  They don‘t want him to be out there talking to county managers, and to be reassuring people, and to be commanding the troops on the field.

They want—and it‘s not a cabinet level agency any more, and the FEMA director will not have cabinet status, not even assistant secretary status.  It‘s a director‘s job without any authority, and... 

SCARBOROUGH:  And, Morrie—that causes a problem, Morrie.  And of course when we had the last FEMA director on, Brownie, as George Bush called him, he told us that he was sent to Baton Rouge and was not allowed to go down to New Orleans to be hand‘s on.  You‘re right exactly right, Morrie.

Thanks for being with us, Morrie Goodman.

GOODMAN:  My pleasure, Joe.

SCARBOROUGH:   And Tim Morris, we greatly appreciate you being with us also.

And Michael Brown did say he wanted to get down to New Orleans.  He wanted to be on the front lines.  But he was ordered to stay away.  Imagine that.

I‘m joined now by Tucker Carlson.  He‘s the host of “The Situation with Tucker Carlson.”

Hey, Tucker, what‘s the situation tonight? 

TUCKER CARLSON, HOST, “THE SITUATION”:  Well, you tell me, Joe.

There‘s some guy busted for trying to seduce a 14-year-old girl?  He works at DHS.  What‘s going on over there?   I mean, I‘m baffled by it.  We‘re going to get the very latest on that.  We‘re going to give you the context you need to understand what‘s going on.

Then, a school in Colorado has banned the display of the American flag on students‘ clothing because it would upset illegal immigrants and people who side with them.  What country is this?  We‘re going to ask that question.  We‘ll tell you more.  

SCARBOROUGH:  Tucker, don‘t bait me.  Come on, don‘t bait me.

CARLSON:  Sorry, Joe.  I can‘t help it.

SCARBOROUGH:  I‘m ready to go off for about an hour.

Tucker thanks a lot.

CARLSON:  Thanks, Joe.

SCARBOROUGH:  And make sure you tune into “The Situation” coming up next at 11:00.

And still ahead here, a brutal murder in one of the wealthiest neighborhoods in America.  Who killed a man who earned and lost more money than most of us will see in a lifetime?

And find out why an eighth grader trying to follow the rules and doing the right thing is now fighting a principal who now wants to expel him.  That‘s coming up in a flyover of “Scarborough Country.”


SCARBOROUGH:  A bizarre murder mystery playing out tonight in the wealthy New York suburb of Greenwich, Connecticut.  This mystery involves money, power, and a family with a history of murder.

NBC‘s Mike Taibbi has that story. 


MIKE TAIBBI, NBC CORRESPONDENT (voice-over):  New York investor Andrew Kissel seemed to have it all.  A doorman condo in a swanky Manhattan high rise to go with his cars and yacht, and a wife who dispensed her own investment wisdom. 


HAYLEY KISSEL, ANDREW KISSEL‘S WIFE:  They‘ve gotten distracted over the past two years by the lure of quick money. 


TAIBBI:  But by the time Kissel was found dead Monday morning in the basement of a rent Connecticut mansion, the condo and toys were all gone.  His wife had left him.  And the allure of quick money for him, millions he was about to officially admit belonged to others, had dozens of creditors and investigators in hot pursuit. 


PHILLIP RUSSELL, ANDREW KISSEL‘S ATTORNEY:  These were white-collar crimes.  There was no violence involved.  There were no unsavory people involved. 


TAIBBI:  The neighbors we spoke to, in a town where robbery is a worry, but rarely violence, were shaken.

(on camera):  One neighbor told me was a lot more comfortable when early reports had this as a suicide.  “I mean, this is Greenwich,” she said, “there aren‘t supposed to be murders.”

(voice over):  But murder it was, police said.  Kissel found dead of multiple stab wounds. 


JAMES WALTERS, GREENWICH POLICE CHIEF:  The manner and the way in which this was carried out gives us a level of comfort in stating that it was—Mr. Kissel was the intended victim. 


TAIBBI:  He‘s also the second Kissel to die a violent and untimely death.  His brother, Robert, a Hong Kong banker, bludgeoned to death four years ago by his former waitress wife, Nancy, after she drugged him with a sedative-laced milkshake.  The milkshake murder the Hong Kong papers called it.

And the writer hoping for a book about it just happened to be in Connecticut when Andrew Kissel met his end, and raced right over. 


KEVIN MACMURRAY, AUTHOR:  Obviously, it makes it a much bigger book. 


TAIBBI:  The story does have it all.  A family that started at a level of privilege that most people never see, rising to even greater heights.  And then falling to the lowest place possible.  Children, wives and fortunes and hopes, scattered or lost completely, the last act, early violent death. 

Mike Taibbi, NBC, Greenwich, Connecticut.


SCARBOROUGH:  And with me now, former FBI profiler and MSNBC analyst Clint van Zandt.

Clint, where do you go first in a case like this as an investigator?

CLINT VAN ZANDT, FORMER FBI PROFILER & MSNBC ANALYST:   Always interesting, Joe, the connection between money and murder.  Sometimes, there‘s just never enough money.

In a case like this, I think the authorities are going to start with the crime scene.  This is, you know, Investigation 101.

If he was stabbed multiple times, Joe, how many murder weapons does it suggest?  One, perhaps two assailants?   Do we have the traditional hair, blood, fibers, footprints, fingerprints?  And then, what about the potential suspects?  Or as we commonly call them now, persons of interest?   Seems like, Joe, there‘s going to be a lot of people of interest in this particular investigation. 

SCARBOROUGH:  Who are those people? 

VAN ZANDT:  Well, you‘ve got to start out, of course, as your lead-in report suggested, his wife you have to look at.  And, of course, he was going to appear in court day after tomorrow and plead guilty to embezzlement, fraud.  So who were his victims?   Were they angry enough to have done something like this is this?

Then, of course, there was money he was going to inherit, perhaps, from his deceased brother‘s estate.  Someone was going to take care of those children.

So whether it‘s going to be somebody in the family, whether it‘s going to be someone that he offended—the challenge is, Joe, he was in this house.  His wife had already moved out.  He had asked his wife, “Ok, if you don‘t mind, I‘m going to stay here through the weekend and then I‘ll be gone on Monday.”

Somebody, somehow, knew this guy would be home alone and came in and bound his hands, bound his feet, put a t-shirt or a pillowcase over his head, and then stabbed him multiple times. 

SCARBOROUGH:  And what does that type of brutal killing tell you?  I mean, we obviously—on TV they‘ll tell you that mobsters will go in, it‘ll be a clean kill, they‘ll shoot him twice.  That‘s the way it‘s done on TV.

Here you‘ve got multiple stab wounds. You‘ve this guy being tied and bound, a very brutal murder.  What does that tell you? 

VAN ZANDT:  Well, first of all, you want to suggest—you have to answer the question, could one offender come in—could I Just come in with a knife and say, “Ok, I want you to tie your own feet and hands up?”  Or if I‘m going to tie your feet and hands up, what do I do with the knife in the meantime?  So does it, perhaps, suggest there may have been two assailants who came in? 

And, Joe, a knife is a very personal, up close weapon.  It‘s one thing to stand 10 feet away and shoot somebody.  It‘s another to plunge that knife into somebody over and over again.

Was this somebody angry, frustrated, who wanted to seek revenge on this guy?  I mean there‘s no evidence that somebody broke in.  There‘s nothing stolen from the house, the authorities tell us.  So why was he targeted? 

SCARBOROUGH:  All right.  Thank you so much, Clint Van Zandt.  Obviously, we‘re going to be back with you with a lot more of this in the coming days.  We appreciate your being with us tonight.

VAN ZANDT:  Thanks, Joe.

And coming up, find out why one of America‘s most legendary country music stars is fighting charges, and why he says it‘s all about money.

And it seems like some school districts are out of control.  Wait until you hear the reason why a mother and father have had to hire a lawyer to keep their eighth grader from being expelled.  That‘s straight ahead in Flyover Country.


SCARBOROUGH:  It is time for Flyover of “Scarborough Country.”  The stories the mainstream media ignores.

First up, say it ain‘t so.  A country music legend, who invited all his rowdy friends over, is facing charges of being too rowdy tonight.  A waitress at the Peabody Hotel in Memphis says Hank Williams Jr. assaulted her last month. 

Nineteen year old Holly Hornbeak said he tried to kiss her and then held her in a choke hold.

Williams‘ publicist says the accuser‘s only after money and says he‘s got a letter from her attorney to prove it.

Next stop, Indiana, where it seems a middle school principal needs a class in common sense.  At eighth grade boy has been suspended there and may be expelled for doing, what most people would say, was the right thing.

Now, this boy realized he had accidentally brought in a Swiss army knife to school.  He went directly to the principal‘s office, once he remembered, and he turned it in.

What he did, the principal immediately suspended him for 10 days and wrote a letter actually recommending that the honor student be expelled.

His parents are outraged and they‘ve hired an attorney, but the superintendent of schools will be the one who decides next what to do with the young honor student.

And we‘ll be right back.

And, friends, don‘t forget, “The Situation with Tucker Carlson” is straight ahead.


You can take “Scarborough Country” on the road with you.  Becomes the best car for America? 

We told you earlier about that 19-year-old who testified on Capitol Hill today.  He turned over the names of 15,000 potential sex predators to the Department of Justice.  And we want to know what‘s being done to track these guys down.

If you want to know, contact the Department of Justice‘s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section.  And you can call the chief of that division at 212-514-5780 and e-mail him at

That‘s all the time we have for tonight.  “The Situation with Tucker Carlson” starts right now.



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