tv CBS Evening News With Katie Couric CBS October 13, 2010 4:30pm-5:00pm PST
we're choosing a governor, shouldn't character matter? >> couric: tonight from disaster to rapture: joyous reunions in chile as those miners are rescued one by one. and the incredible ingenuity that saved their lives. i'm katie couric. also tonight, americans losing their homes in record numbers-- but were all the foreclosures legal? a joint investigation is opened by every state in the union. and the night the world stood still to watch a miracle unfold before our eyes. captioning sponsored by cbs from cbs news world headquarters in new york, this is the "cbs evening news" with katie couric.
>> couric: good evening everyone, it was hard to imagine any kind of happy ending when a chilean mine caved in ten weeks ago, trapping 33 men a half mile below the earth. but most have now been rescued and the rest will soon be on the way up. first to be rescued was florencio avalos, by late afternoon they were coming up every half-hour, the phoenix rescue capsule took them from the hot dark mine to chile's cold spring air and into the arms of loved ones. after 70 days, they are finally free. seth doane is at the san jose mine in chile. seth, if anything this operation is going a lot more smoothly than anticipated. >> reporter: absolutely, katie. in fact it is moving well ahead of schedule. that trip in the rescue capsule, now it's taking just about nine minutes, as engineers shave off time as they get more familiar with this operation. it is making chileans incredibly proud, to show the world what they can do with such skill,
with such precision, with such ability. people here in camp hope are still captivating, watching every minute unfold on tv. one of the most complex rescue operations ever attempted. one by one. husbands, brothers, fathers, and sons emerged to joyous reunions, despite all odds. each lifted from an underground cave that could have just as easily become a tomb. mario sepulveda couldn't contain his joy. hugs for his family and his president. >> i was with god and with the devil-- and god took us. >> reporter: his starring role in the miners videos has earned him the nickname super mario and led to rumors of a possible job offer from chilean tv. but he said i was born a miner and i'll die a miner.
all through the night, and into the day, these were the moments that had an entire nation finally exhaling. a son welcomed back to life by his mother. many miners wore the same t- shirt, it reads "gracious senor" or, "thank you, lord." a father hugging his child. a mechanic who rarely entered the mine, victor zamora, had gone down to repair a vehicle. for estoban roswras, prayer of thanksgiving game before his fiancee's hugs and kisses. almost everyone cried. before the collapse, isidro had promised his wife he'd quit the mine for something safer. he sent up one message saying i will fight to the end to be with you. at 63, mario gomez has been working in a mine since he was 12 years old. jimmy sanchez only 19, has been
a working miner for five months. johnny barrios is going from a thriller to a soap opera. he was welcomed by his 56-year- old mistress, susana. barrios' wife of 28 years, marta only found out about the affair during his entrapment. the rescues started just before midnight. families in camp hope held their breath. >> the first miner has just made it to the surface! the crowd, the energy here is electric! >> reporter: and near by town of copiapo schools are closed. the freed miners are being brought to the hospital here, and appear to be in decent shape. edison peno reportedly ran six miles a day underground to elvis presley music. now he's been invited to visit graceland. all the miners will have to get used to being in the spotlight, but for now, it's simply joy.
maria segovia's 70-day vigil came to an end this afternoon. she watched her brother emerge. the look on her face said everything. now katie, it is hard to capture that sense of euphoria, that sense of relief, and also the fatigue that is setting in here. just imagine what these families have gone through. from at one point believing you might never see your loved one again to seeing them emerge on the surface, just an incredible story. katie? >> couric: you can almost feel the euphoria, seth, even through the television set as you were watching this unfold. meanwhile i know the miners will be spending a couple days in the hospital. are officials concerned about my medical or emotional problems they may be experiencing right now? >> well, katie, the minister of health has said he is impressed by how well everyone is doing, they are expected to be in the
hospital for probably two days for observation. what they are really looking for in the longer term here is the psychological issues. they want to be careful to search for issues like panic attacks, nightmares, claustrophobia, those types of things that might set in over time. >> couric: meanwhile i understand they've been showered with gifts. can you tell us about a few of those, seth? >> they range, they really range katie, from a trip to the greek isles with a loved one to sit on the beaches, thanks to a greek mining company, to an ipod from steve jobs. >> couric: seth doane at the san jose mine in chile, thank you so much, seth. now the miners are certainly lucky to alive but there was a lot more than luck involved in getting them out of that mine. from the time they were discovered alive, 17 days after the cave-in, the work has gone on around the clock to figure out a way to rescue them. and ben tracy reports chile got plenty of help from all over the world. >> reporter: on august 22nd a note appeared from half a mile underground.
it simply said: "the 33 of us are fine in the shelter." for the next seven weeks the chilean government executed a methodically detailed plan that led to their freedom. >> they have scoured the four corners of the earth and even above the earth to find the answers and solutions to get these 33 people out alive and out safely. >> reporter: chile called in dr. j.d. polk from nasa, his expertise in treating astronauts in confined spaces led to the miners doing leg squats, taking salt tablets in protein fluids. while on a strict diet so they could fit in the escape capsule. eventually three rescue holes were attempted, known as plans a, b, and c. plan b was the work of brandon fischer's company, officials thought it could take four months to reach the miners. but their unique percussion drill which pounds the rock as it rotates, broke into the shelter in just six weeks.
>> it was just unbelievable, the feelings and the emotions of everyone was going through, it was just indescribable. >> closer and closer and closer, an inch at a time. >> reporter: to keep the miners alive, the government brought in a team of doctors, and psychologists who counseled the trapped men. through a tiny four-inch tube they sent down a camping cot, video camera, nicotine patches and messages from loved ones, to keep their spirits high they piped in a national soccer match and gave them virgin mary statues. the miners leaned on their faith and never seemed to lose hope. >> they had a positive attitude from the start. they had a great deal of faith, and the technical abilities of the top side personnel to rescue them. they fully expected to be rescued. >> reporter: when the once bearded miners reappeared above ground, they were surprisingly clean shaven wearing clean clothes, and waving the chilean flag. and none of that was by accident. those supplies were likely lowered down to the miners to better stage manage their
rescue, and the chilean government really did think of everything. they even sent a guide book down to the trapped miners to teach them how to talk to the media once they're free. >> couric: good advice, ben tracy, ben, thanks so much. what a great story. now to some americans in need of rescue, in danger of losing their homes. more than one million homes, likely to be repossessed this year, that would be an all-time record. now anthony mason reports every state in the union is launching a joint investigation into whether lenders are using flawed documents to take homes back. >> this would have been my daughter's room and this is the other bath the second bath. >> reporter: joshua cooper thought he had a deal on this foreclosed house in wesley chapel, florida. he was preparing to move in with his wife and three kids when his bank put a freeze on foreclosures last week. >> we were just over two weeks away from closing, when we got the phone call that the bank was canceling the contract. and pulling the house off the market. we were just shocked, stunned. >> reporter: nearly a third of
all the houses sold in the country in september were distressed properties. so a moratorium on foreclosures could have serious consequences on the economy. >> we won't be able to work through these problem loans. house prices will be weaker for longer and that means the economy really can't gain traction. >> reporter: even so, the attorneys general of all 50 states today said the foreclosure process must be investigated. >> our focus is on the "robo- signing," that's the issue that's front and center and very troublesome. >> reporter: employees of at least three major banks have admitted to "robo-signing," that is signing thousands of legal documents without actually reading them, to speed up foreclosures. analysts say the investigation is unlikely to keep many of the delinquent borrowers in their homes. >> bottom line is that the overwhelming majority of these loans probably would ultimately have been foreclosed on any way. >> reporter: but the investigation has slowed the struggling housing market. the coopers had already invested
in new appliances for the home they now won't own. >> a year of looking is finally over with, and we're back to square one like you never even started. >> reporter: with about five million borrowers still in trouble, foreclosures are not expected to peak until well into next year. if the crisis isn't resolved quickly, economists say it could extend the housing slump into 2012. katie? >> couric: all right, anthony mason, thank you. still ahead here on the "cbs evening news," christine o'donnell debates on a national stage, and michelle obama hits the campaign trail. and later, the entire world enraptured by the ultimate reality show. cook with campbell's. with touches like a splash of fresh cream or sauterne wine. our soups help you put smiles on the faces of the ones you love. campbell's.® it's amazing
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state where the race features some very familiar names. >> we've got a great opportunity here, folks. >> reporter: the missouri senate race is a family affair. republican roy blunt's son was governor. so was democrat robin carnahan's father. but it is party, not family ties that are driving this campaign.
the "d" stands for disadvantaged. the key to a double digit poll lead for republican blunt. you hear it from a stalwart democrat in hanabel. >> the republicans have been great about staying on message and accusing democrats of tax and spend. >> reporter: you even hear pretty the party's nominee. >> there's just no doubt, because they're in charge in washington, people want results, they haven't seen results yet. >> reporter: when the 2010 midterms began, democrats saw the open republican senate seat here in missouri as a prime target of opportunity. that target is now looking a lot more elusive. >> this is a campaign about what we do to create more private sector jobs and get the federal government under control. >> reporter:
for roy blunt, a 14-year veteran of congress, the declining fortunes of president obama has proven a political gold mine... >> would already have been done if i had robin carnahan there. >> reporter: ...now carnahan is trying to recast the debate from democrat versus republican to outsider versus insider.
>> i know if you'd be watching those ads on television that you might think i was in washington all these years causing the economy to be a wreck. he's been the worst of what we don't like about washington, wasting our money, too much corruption and sweetheart deals. >> reporter: but, says one analyst, that argument is not working against the broad tide of voter unhappiness. >> the economy is not doing well and it's difficult to say it would have been even worse if somebody else had been running it. >> reporter: two years ago john mccain won a razor thin victory over the huge advantage in st. louis and kansas city. this year the overwhelmingly bleak view of the way things are going has made the outlook much bleaker for democrats. jeff greenfield, cbs news, st. louis. >> couric: and bleak is the way most americans view the economy, and a cbs news poll out tonight, they say it is by far their number one concern this election year. nearly nine out of ten say their
own financial situation is the same or worse than it was two years ago, at the height of the recession. we have two more reports tonight from the campaign trail. dean reynolds is in chicago, but first nancy cordes is in delaware where the two candidates face off in a debate on national television. i know one poll out today shows republican christine o'donnell currently 19 points behind. >> reporter: that's right, katie, and she would have to give a transformational performance tonight to make up that kind of ground. but at the very least this debate gives o'donnell a chance to change the subject after being widely mocked for weeks for releasing an ad assuring delaware voters that she is not a witch. tonight o'donnell and her democratic challenger chris coons will be taking questions in part from students here at the university of delaware. students who tell us that their biggest concern is whether they'll have a job when they graduate from college.
right now the unemployment rate in this country stands at 9%. that's up from just 5.5% a few years ago. katie? >> couric: should be an interesting one to watch. nancy, thanks so much. now to dean reynolds in chicago. dean, the democrats are hoping michelle obama's star power can help turn things around in a number of key races. >> reporter: well, it's true, katie, that michelle obama's popularity exceeds her husband's and now she's on a three-week seven-state campaign swing. first in wisconsin this morning and later in illinois, she got right down to the economy. commiserating with families, asking for their patience and reminding voters it's going to take a lot longer to dig ourselves out of this hole than any of us would like. the truth is this is the hard part. it's also a measure of how hard the environment is for democrats nationally that the first lady would be campaigning in her home state, in her home town, involving barack obama's old senate seat. and right now, the race for that seat is neck and neck. katie? >> couric: all right, dean
reynolds in chicago, dean thank you. coming up next, she is the face of education reform. and now she's out of a job. yea? we mail documents all over the country, so, what if there were priority mail flat rate... envelopes? yes! you could ship to any state... for a low flat rate? yes! a really low flat rate. like $4.90? yes! and it could look like a flat rate box... only flatter? like this? you...me...genius. genius. priority mail flat rate envelopes. just $4.90. only from the postal service. a simpler way to ship. m/[ commearlier, she hady vonn! an all-over achy cold... what's her advantage? it's speedy alka-seltzer!
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>> reporter: if it seems strange for michelle rhee to hug the man who wanted her gone, that's because it was. vincent gray, the incoming mayor of washington, announced her resignation without explaining why. in fact he praised the results she achieved and promised to continue her reforms. >> school reform will move forward in the gray administration. >> he pushed his way out and? >> reporter: rhee's departure has more to do with politics than education. after three years in office she was the face of effective urban school reform, and the star of the documentary, "waiting for superman." >> there's a complete and utter lack of accountability. >> reporter: but she was a bomb thrower, she blamed bad schools on bad teachers, fired more than 200, gutted the union contract, and didn't care if anyone got mad. >> nobody hired me into this position and said make the adults feel good, michelle. when the mayor hired me into this job, he said, improve the schools.
>> reporter: but the union got its payback this year, spending a million dollars to defeat rhee's boss, mayor adrian fenty. michele rhee is now free to push for school reform done her way. but the unions just sent a message to future school reformers: clean house the way she did and we go after you. wyatt andrews, cbs news, washington. >> couric: in other news, hispanics are america's fastest growing minority, and also the ethnic group that lives the longest. a.c.d.c. report today says a hispanic born in 2006 should live to be over 80 years old, that's more than two years more than whites and seven years more than blacks. one theory is the healthiest people from latin america come to the united states. and coming up next, high hopes and high drama get huge ratings around the world. nighttime nasal congestion meant, i couldn't breathe right.
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while the rest of the world held its breath. from chile to europe, to the united states. the world was one. watching the rescue that had once seemed so distant, so unlikely. news casts in a multitude of languages told the same story of human victory. around the world, if a tv was on, people gathered, cheering every new pop to the surface. a polish viewer declared, we are all chileans now. it's an event shared around the world in a way that rarely happens any more. not reality tv, but real tv. >> it's a wonderful story. how can you take your eyes off of these people? you want to see what they're like; you want so see what their families are like. that transcends national boundaries, it transcends ideology. >> reporter: in a world that has had even more than the usual
burden of trouble and tragedy lately, we can use that shared story right now. this time, human ingenuity triumphed. it's as uplifting as the day captain sullenberger landed his crippled jet on the hudson river. as dramatic as the long flight home by the crew of apollo 13 in a broken spacecraft. as reassuring as the rescue of little jessica mclure from deep in a well. it's proof of the resilience of the human spirit. and a reminder of all that joins us together. john blackstone, cbs news, los angeles. >> couric: and that is the "cbs evening news" for tonight. i'm katie couric. thank you for watching. i'll see you tomorrow. good night. captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
your realtime captioner is linda marie macdonald. caption colorado, l.l.c. i'm a female. i'm a female emotionally, physically and legally. >> a retired cop who was born a man now fighting to compete as a woman. what are the rules of the game for transgendered athletes? what triggered the deadly sequence of events in san bruno? weeks after the blast, we may have an answer. the first report from federal investigators. need to go to the dmv? take a number. wait, maybe for days. what's causing a total meltdown across the state. good evening, i'm allen martin. >> i'm dana king. we begin with breaking news. >> because we want to take you live to chile where crews just rescued the last of those trapped miners, the last man to emerge is luis