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tv   America This Morning  ABC  September 24, 2010 4:00am-4:30am EDT

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making news on this friday, september 24th. >> put to death. a woman is executed in virginia. pleas to spare her went right up to the very end. states of emergency in the upper midwest. the water came up fast after a powerful storm. and new restrictions for a once-popular drug. we'll hear from the doctor who first raised the red flag. and good morning, everybody. thanks for being with us on this friday morning. we begin, now, with the first woman executed here in the u.s. in five years. she's been put to death in
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virginia. >> theresa lewis' case gained international attention, not just because of her gender. but supporters argue that she was not smart enough to carry out the crimes. here's brad wheelis. >> reporter: theresa lewis became the first woman executed in virginia in almost 50 years. lewis was sentenced to detd in 2003, for hiring two killers who shot her husband and her stepson. according to prosecutors, the two were lured into lewis' scheme by sex and money. the money was to promise to split the son's and husband's life insurance with him. lewis confessed to the plot. >> i just wish i could take it back. >> reporter: according to a witness of the execution, these were her last words. >> she said, i want kathy to know that i love you. and i'm very sorry. >> reporter: the two men she conspired with to commit the killings were sentenced to life imprisonment.
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one killed himself in prison in 2006. lewis' case drew a lot of attention because she was not the trigger person. and because her i.q. is between 70 and 72, on the borderline of the legal definition of mental retardation. anyone with less than a 70 i.q. cannot be executed. best-selling author john grisham has called her execution unjust. even iranian president mahmoud ahmadinejad weighed in. but for lewis' daughter, kathy, the final verdict seems just. >> she could have walked away from my father and never looked back. i think people need to remember her victims and not her. >> reporter: since capital punishment was reinstated in 1977, only 1 11 of the 24 people executed have been women. four members of a family are dead after a shooting rampage in seattle. police have not confirmed the identities of the victims. they'll do so probably later today.
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it appears that an asian woman in her 50s shot her daughter, son-in-law and her two teenage granddaughters and then, took her own life. the woman's daughter who did survive told police, quote, my mom's gone crazy. iran's president is provoking more than the usual amount of controversy, after his remarks at the united nations. mahmoud ahmadinejad's speech yesterday came after president obama had addressed the issue of middle east peace. emily schmidt is joining us from washington. >> reporter: iran's delegation applauded mahmoud ahmadinejad's address to the united nations yesterday. today, president obama will make his first public comments since that controversial speech. president obama's speech advocated working towards peace in the middle east. >> if an agreement is not reached, palestinians will never know the pride and dignity that comes with their own state. israelis will never know the
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certainty and security that comes with sovereign and stable neighbors. >> reporter: and working towards peace with iran. mr. obama said the door to diplomacy remained open, should iran choose toe walk through it. but that door seemed much more likely to close after iran's president took the floor. mahmoud ahmadinejad said americans were behind the september 11th terrorist attacks to help the american economy. and to save the zionist regime of israel. at that point, 27 others walked out. a white house official said mr. obama found the remarks deeply offensive, especially made so close to the site where the world trade center once stood. a spot the u.s. president mentioned in his own address. >> nine years ago, the destruction of the world trade center signaled the threat that respected no boundary of dignity or decency. >> reporter: some say ahmadinejad's words were not at all surprising. >> it's just an attempt by
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ahmadinejad to change the subject. to change the focus from him and his stewardship of iran to issues he's much more confident talking about. >> reporter: today, president obama has scheduled an interview with bbc persia. the white house says this is a chance for the president to talk directly to the iranian people. >> emily schmidt in washington this morning. thank you. senate democrats are putting off a decision on tax cuts. they will not schedule a vote now until after the elections in november. bush era tax cuts are set to expire at the end of this year. both parties are at odds, of course, over whether the cuts should be extended to everyone, including the wealthy, or just the middle class. the democrats fared better with legislation to help small businesses. the house approved $30 billion in loans for those businesses. and another $12 billion in tax breaks. the senate has already approved the measure. it is now headed to the president's desk. parts of the upper midwest remain under water this morning,
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after getting batters by up to a foot of rain. widespread flooding forced people to evacuate, as rivers overflowed. >> two communities, one in mn and the other in wisconsin, were the hardest hit. here, now, is alex stone. >> reporter: a powerful storm soaked the upper midwest on thursday, swelling rivers and creeks. >> the water based flooding is continuing to raise. it's kazzing a lot of problems for us. >> reporter: the heavy rains forced mandatory evacuations in arcadia, wisconsin. police went door-to-door to urge the town's residents, about 1,500 to get out of harm's way. >> i feel sorry for the people of arcadia. but people are losing things. basements will be flooded. things likes that. it's terrible. >> reporter: raging rivers are threatening towns all over wisconsin and minnesota. flooding streets in basements, like jeff's in owatanna. >> got 2 1/2, maybe 3 feet of water right now. we're getting ready to pump it
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out. >> reporter: wisconsin's governor declared a state of emergency. and is ordering the national guard to help stricken homeowners. >> mother nature was not a very good thing today. >> reporter: more rain is expected, making the flooding worse. alex stone, abc news. and more weather news this morning. tropical storm matthew is menacing central america this morning. >> it is now whipping up to 45-mile-per-hour winds in the caribbean. and is expected to bring heavy rain and flooding to nicaragua and honduras tomorrow. forecasters say it should weaken as it heads toward mexico's yucatan peninsula. more showers in the upper midwest. also stretching into cleveland, louisville, nashville and memphis. showers and thunderstorms from little rock to el paso. light rain in south florida and in northern maine. >> warmer than usual along the east coast. 79 in boston. 84 in new york. and 93 in baltimore. 70s in kansas city, omaha and chicago.
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phoenix will hit 100. sacramento, 89. and boise, 81. and when we come back this morning, the looming general motors stock offering. it's apparently not going to be as big as once thought. that's coming up in our business news. and
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it is time, now, for a check of market activity starting overseas. tokyo's nikkei average fell 1% today. hong kong's hang seng is higher. in london, the ftse opened
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lower. on wall street, the dow dropped almost 77 points yesterday. the nasdaq slipped seven points. general motors is said to be cutting back its initial stock offering. published reports say gm will raise $8 billion to $10 billion less than it originally targeted. the treasury department prefers the smaller sale that will raise the stock price and make it more likely that the $50 billion bailout will be repaid in full. the government now owns 61% of gm. sales of previously-owned homes rebounded a bit last month. but it was still the second-worst month since 1997. cheaper prices and record mortgage rates have not done enough to boost sales. many potential buyers have worried prices have not yet bottomed out. macy's is already ramping out for the holiday shopping season, anticipating solid sales growth this year. the department store giant plans to hire 65,000 holiday workers, up slightly from previous years. most of them will be part-time positions. but some may turn into full-time
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jobs. and halloween sales are expected to rebound this year. americans are expected to spend an average of $66 on costumes, candy and decorations, which is $10 more than last year. in today's "usa today" tech report, two, new ways to watch tv on your phone. hulu-plus and bitba are going to let you catch up on recently-aired tv shows and classics, as well. "usa today's" ed baig, says they're promising. but not yet ready for primetime. >> overall, it's too much to pay for hulu-plus or for bitbop. i want to see more programs. i want to see fresh programs. and i want to see a few technical snags addressed, too. >> you can read his full review on >> we have to get ourselves on that. >> yeah. when we come back on this friday, the once-popular diabetes drug is now on the restricted list. and a record-setting day for one of baseball's most popular
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stars. sports news coming up. stay with us. ♪ yummy, yummy, yummy, i got love in my tummy ♪ ♪ and i feel like... [ female announcer ] kellogg's wants to make kids happy one tummy at a time. because 9 out of 10 kids don't get the fiber they need, that's why froot loops, apple jacks and corn pops have 3 grams of fiber in every yummy bowl. they're the cereals your kids love and the fiber their tummies love... which makes for a whole lotta happy. froot loops, apple jacks and corn pops, an oh-so-good source of fiber.
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and now, for a look at morning road conditions. flooding on i-90 and 94 in minnesota and wisconsin. wet on i-70, from pittsburgh to columbus, ohio. slick also on i-40, from nashville, little rock. and on i-10, from houston to new orleans and san antonio. >> if you're flying today, you can expect airport delays in minneapolis, detroit, chicago, memphis, dallas and houston. the government has now put severe restrictions on prescribing the once popular diabetes drug avandia. europeans have gone one step further, pulling the drug off the market altogether. it's all because of avandia's link to heart attacks. here, now, is lisa stark. >> reporter: the battle against the diabetes drug, avandia, has
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been long and hard-fought. leading the charge, dr. steve nissen, a cardiologist at the cleveland clinic. >> people have been asking me, don't you feel vindicated? this is not personal vindication. it's about doing the right thing for patients. >> reporter: it was dr. nissen who first raised the alarm about avandia in 2007. he found it increased heart attack by 43%. the fda had approved the drug eight years earlier. so, what was the agency's response? >> i became their enemy for challenging a drug's safety. >> reporter: the battle lines were drawn. drugmaker glaxo smithkline and some at the fda, insisting avandia was safe. dr. nissen insisting it wasn't. >> it means a lot of people are going to be put at risk here. >> reporter: ultimately, 1 fda researcher determined the drug may have caused as many as 100,000 heart attacks, strokes and deaths. nissen says the war is not won. >> i will sleep better tonight.
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but i will not sleep until i know that we've improved the way we handle these kinds of problems in the united states. we've got to fix the fda. >> reporter: fixing the fda, says nissen, means a wholesale change. no longer should the same people at the agency who approve a drug be the ones to decide if it gets pulled off the market. it's a conflict of interest. >> we must fix those flaws, or we will have further problems like avandia. >> reporter: which nissen calls one of the worst drug safety tragedies in our lifetime. lisa stark, abc news, washington. two dallas police officers have been fired for insubordination after the beating of a motorcyclist. patrol car dash cams captured the incident. one officer is seen beating the motorcyclist. the other officer is accused of repositioning a camera, so it couldn't record what was happening. all three men also face criminal charges. sad news from hollywood this morning. singer, eddie fisher, has passed away. he shot to fame as a pop singer back in the early '50s.
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but he may be remembered more for his private life. he had stormy marriages to actresses debbie reynolds, elizabeth taylor and connie stevens. carrey fisher is one of his children. eddie fisher, dead today at the age of 8. well, if you were trying to update your facebook status yesterday and couldn't get on the social networking site, you were not alone. thanks to the error in the system, when they tried to fix it, all 500,000 facebook users were shut out. the system had to be shut off to fix the error. and some baseball history to tell you about, courtesy of ichiro suzuki. he had 10-straight 200-hit seasons. >> the only other player with 10 200-hit seasons were pete rose. but his were not consecutive. >> wow. the other baseball highlights, now, from max bretos, at espn news. >> good morning.
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this is your espn news update. the hottest race in the majors. the n.l. west. the padres, half-game up on the giants. in l.a. to take on the dodgers. padres trailing 2-1. tony gwynn tracks it down. and denies james loney. matt latos likes the teamwork. ernesto fiere. so, could the giants take advantage? well, thanks to a second inning to remember. in particular, the exploits of juan uribe. to left field. a two-run shot off of ryan dempster. his 23 2 1st home run. still in the second. giants up 6-0. there's juan uribe again for a grand slam. his 22nd of the year. giants win it 13-0. they're the new leaders in the n.l. west. how about the rays and yankees?
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half a game separates these two. top of the sixth, tied. c.c. sabathia walks sean rodriguez. sabathia would be pulled. 5 1/3. carl crawford, base hit to right. the rays score seven in the frame. they lead it 8-3. david price, the bottom of the sixth, gets mark teixeira to out to b.j. upton. the rays win it, 10-3. this has been your espn news update. back to you in new york. well, just days after making a giant king cake, new orleans is now staking claim to another mouth-watering record. this time, they whipped up what's believed to be the world's biggest pot of mac and cheese. >> fully cooked. >> it tipped the scales at 2,100 pounds. just shy of what you would gain if you ate the thing itself. the record attempt was a fund-raiser for habitat for humanity. a taste of history was sold for 5 bucks a bowl.
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up next, this morning, the stories we'll be following today. including severe flooding in the upper midwest. and another court appearance for lindsay lohan. the question is, will she be touch every day. ♪ now the healing power of touch just got more powerful. introducing precise from the makers of tylenol. precise pain relieving heat patch activates sensory receptors. it helps block pain signals for deep penetrating relief you can feel precisely where you need it most. precise. only from the makers of tylenol.
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[ male announcer ] when diet and exercise are not enough, adding lipitor may help. lipitor is a cholesterol-lowering medication that is fda approved to reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke in patients who have heart disease or risk factors for heart disease. lipitor is backed by over 18 years of research. lipitor is not for everyone, including people with liver problems and women who are nursing, pregnant, or may become pregnant. you need simple blood tests to check for liver problems. tell your doctor if you are taking other medications, or if you have any muscle pain or weakness. this may be a sign of a rare but serious side effect. dean will never forget what he went through. don't take your health for granted. [ male announcer ] have a heart to heart with your doctor about your risk. and about lipitor. now, a look ahead to the stories we will be watching on this friday. president obama wraps up his trip to the united nations, with a series of meetings with other leaders. the president is expected to be
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asked about some controversial comments made by iran's leader yesterday. lindsay lohan makes a court appearance today, after failing a mandatory drug test that could land the actress back behind bars. the judge could deliver that sentence today. or put it off until a probation hearing set for next month. the heavy rain is finally expected to stop in parts of the upper midwest, which have been hit by record flooding. states of emergency have been declared in parts of minnesota and wisconsin. the government releases a report on new home sales for the month of august. overall home sales are now shaping up to be just as dismal as last year. comedy central host stephen colbert heads to capitol hill to testify before a house committee on illegal immigrant farm workers. colbert is considered an expert witness as spending a day on a farm as a picker. and a glitch that kept an earth-bound capsule from docking is being figured out. the capsule will land back on earth tomorrow. coming up later, underwraps.
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a compelling look at what it means to be muslim in america. >> our correspondent goes undercover to find out firsthand how women of islam are treated in this country. for some of you, your local news is next. >> for everyone else, we'll be right back. and unlike the leading free detergent, tide free & gentle removes more residue from dirt, food, and sins. so you can be confident about every outfit you put her in, even the ones she chooses. tide free & gentle. style is an option. clean is not. also try new tide free in-wash booster. the more you spend, the bigger the bonus, up to $250 to use on your next purchase. start earning with as little as $75 spent, including great sale prices. hurry, sears bonus days are on! sears. [ female announcer ] kids who don't eat breakfast may not be getting the nutrition they need to keep their bodies strong.
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and finally this morning,
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the evolution of greed. the "wall street" sequel" money never sleeps" hits theaters today. >> it's been nearly 25 years since we heard the line "greed is good." abc's david wright looks at what has changed and what has stayed the same. >> reporter: the new "wall street" opens with gordon gekko getting out of jail. >> one watch. and one mobile phone. >> reporter: the well-dressed equivalent of an unfrozen caveman. in a world that's now greedier than even he ever imagined. >> it's about the game. >> reporter: a lot has changed since the go-go '80s. the top of the charts the year "wall street" came out was george michael. the tv shows that ruled the roost, "bill crosby," "family ties" and "cheers." on the big screen, the world was ruled by the force. a different world.
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>> i know we're in a recession. but it seems like we're just as materialistic. we're just as obsessed with wall street. the '80s are the longest decade ever. other than the short period in the early '90s, when people wore flannel. >> reporter: back then, it seemed like justice when gordon gekko got busted for insider trading. nowada nowadays, that's a martha stewart crime. and she seems to have bounced back just fine. ♪ fly me to the moon >> reporter: netflix the orange at "wall street" some time, and from the minute the credits roll, it's dated. the twin towers, gone forever. >> the point is, ladies and gentlemen, that greed, for lack of a better word, is good. >> reporter: now, gordon gekko seems like a petty thief, compared to a bernie madoff. like jennifer grey, "dirty dancing" then, or "dancing with the stars" now. >> i miss the hair. >> rep


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