tv CBS Evening News With Scott Pelley CBS October 4, 2012 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT
>> pelley: tonight, the debate breathes new life into the romney campaign. >> and let's get out there and win. >> pelley: as the president's comeback comes a day too late. >> we didn't know that big bird was driving the federal deficit. >> pelley: campaign 2012 reports from jan crawford, nancy cordes, and wyatt andrews. seth doane on the deadly meningitis outbreak spreading to more states. hooley williams is on the syrian border as tensions mount with neighboring turkey. and ben trace weseniors who believe neither food nor life should be wasted. >> we've still got a lot of good years in us and we can help a lot of people and that's the main thing we're doing. captioning sponsored by cbs this is the "cbs evening news" with scott pelley.
>> pelley: good evening. with just 33 days to go, the presidential election is suddenly looking a whole lot different than it did 24 hours ago. republican challenger mitt romney did what he had to do in the first debate to turn his campaign around. have a look at our poll of uncommitted voters. voters who told us before the debate they had not made up their minds or could still change them. after watching the debate, 46% said governor romney won. less than half that thereby, 22%, said president obama won. 32% called it a tie. and look at this-- before the debate, only 30% of uncommitted voters said governor romney cares about their needs and problems. after the debate, that number more than doubled to 63%. on that same question, mr. obama's number went up as well, from 53% to 69. that was small consolation, though for a president whose debate performance has shaken up his campaign. we have reports tonight from our
campaign 2012 team, and first, we'll go to nancy cordes, who is covering the president tonight. nancy. >> reporter: scott, even democrats are describing the president's performance as lack luster, and listless, and the campaign acknowledges it is going to have to reexamine its debate strategy. out on the campaign trail today, the president was in cleanup mode, trying to turn the tables on a triumphant mitt romney. >> when i got on to the stage, i met this very spirited fellow who claimed to be mitt romney. but it couldn't have been mitt romney because the real mitt romney has been running around the country for the last year promising $5 trillion in tax cuts that favor the wealthy. >> reporter: supporters like darrion wilson wondered where that president obama was last night. >> i was wanting him to have more enthusiasm in his enters and hit back a little more. i felt like romney was lying
right and left and i'm, "come on, call him on that." >> reporter: campaign officials concede in an attempt to appear above the frey mr. obama missed easy opening. he spoke slowly, sometimes haltingly in a roundabout way. >> i want to get to it, but all i want to do is very quickly. >> let's get back to medicare. >> reporter: it's not that the president department go on offense. >> is the reason that governor romney is keeping all these plans to replace secret because they're too good? >> reporter: but debate observers noted a difference in body language. mr. obama looked down when his opponent spoke and sometimes appeared angry or peevish. romney kept his eyes glued on the president, waiting to jump in. today, mr. obama delivered some of the comebacks he missed last night. >> he said he would eliminate funding for public television. ( laughter ) ( booing )
that was his answer. i mean, thank goodness somebody is finally getting tough on big bird. it's about time. we didn't know that big bird was driving the federal deficit. >> reporter: so the question now is does the campaign send the president back to debate camp? earlier this week, he described it as a drag, and, scott, one source close to the white house tells us the president appeared irritated during debate prep in nevada, a common affliction for presidents who aren't used to being challenged face to face. >> pelley: we're going to switch now to jan crawford who is covering the renewed romney campaign tonight, jan. >> >> reporter: scott, romney had gotten off his message the past few weeks and conservatives criticized him for not being tough enough on the president. last night he silenced those critics. today we're here in virginia. this may be his biggest rally yet. this campaign is re-energized.
>> it's great to be with you. let's get out there and win. thank you! >> reporter: eager to capitalize on the debate, his campaign arranged for rom flee to make a surprise appearance this morning before the colorado conservative political action conference where he talked up his debate performance. >> last night i thought was a great opportunity for the american people to see 22 very different visions for the country. and i think it was-- it was helpful to be able to tribe those visions. i saw the president's vision as trickle-down government. and i don't think that's what america believes in. >> reporter: romney used the trickle-down government phrase for the first time in the debate, saying the president believed in more government, big spending, and higher taxes calling his policies a failure. >> under the president's policies, middle-income americans have been buried. they're-- they're just being crushed. middle-income americans have seen their income come down by $4,300. this is a-- this is a tax in and of itself. i'll call it the economy tax. it's been crushing. >> reporter: campaign aides
say he will continue to hit obama hard on the economy and jobs. and will offer more specifics which they've been promising for some time. he is also ramping up spending on television after being outspent by the president more than two to one in swing states ask this morning released a new ad reinforcing his message in the debate. >> who will raise taxes on the middle class? according to an independent, nonpartisan study, barack obama and the liberals will raise taxes on the middle class by $4,000. >> reporter: now, after the debate, his key advisers, romney's key advisers, said they were surprised the president didn't put up more of a fight. one told me they were ready for some of these attacks on bain capital. romney's comment about the 47% of americans who don't pay federal income taxes. those have featured prominently in the president's attack ads. last night, scott, he didn't mention either one. >> pelley: jan, thank you. vice president joe biden also talked about taxes today, and here's he had to say at a campaign stop in iowa.
>> on top of the trillion dollars of spending we've already cut, we're going to ask, yes, we're going to ask the wealthy to pay more. high heart breaks. come on. ( applause ) you know the phrase you always use? obama and biden want to raise taxes by $8 trillion. guess what? yes, we do, in one regard. we want to let that trillion-dollar tax cut expire so the middle class doesn't have to bear the burden of all that money going to the super wealthy. ( applause ) that's not a tax it. that's called fairness where i come from. >> pelley: the vice president will debate his republican challenger, paul ryan, next thursday, and cbs news will bring it to you live beginning at 9:00 eastern time. the other big story we're following tonight is the deadly outbreak of meningitis. it has now spread to six states. 35 cases have been reported,
five people have died. the suspected source is tainted vials ofster roadways that were shipped to 23 states. seth doane is in tennessee, the state with the most cases. >> honest to goodness, as time went on, i became more and more frightened. >> reporter: on monday, sue manner learned she might have been infected by the fungus in the contaminated steroids given for back pain. what symptoms have you been told to look out for. >> headache, neck pain, uhm, vomiting, dizziness, a lot of flu-like symptoms. >> reporter: those could be symptoms-- >> could be anything. >> reporter: manner was one of more than 700 patients who received injections at clinics affiliated with st. thomas hospital in nashville. >> i don't want this thing in my body. i feel like i want to plunger. i want to pull it out, get out of my body. >> yeah, they were all worried and she rightfully so. we've told them all that this is
very serious. >> reporter: dr. robert latham has examined 19 people who received injections. he saw three new meningitis cases today. the nashville clinics received 2,000 potentially contaminated vials from the massachusetts company that makes the drug, new england compounding center. the company has received safety warnings from the f.d.a. in the past, one time for mislabeling a drug. the c.d.c. is investigating how the drug became contaminated. by injecting the tainted steroid into the lower back, the fungus can travel directly through the spinal fluid to the brain. it normally takes between one and four weeks for meningitis symptoms to appear. >> the hospital has alerted more than 700 who have received this injection. do you expect to see a lot more coming through these doors? >> i can't tell you yet at this point whether we're at the beginning, the middle, or the end. i think we're probably in the middle. i hope we're at the end, but there's no guarantee of that.
>> reporter: sue manner, the patient we spoke with, says she does not blame the hospital where he received that injection. today away learned more than 17,000 doses have been recalled, but, scott, no word as to how many of those have been administered. >> pelley: seth, thank you. dr. jon lapook is our medical correspondent. seth just said the c.d.c. is investigating how the vials were contapped. how might they have been contamentd? what are the possibilities? >> reporter: scott, that medication is supposed to be prepared nay sterile environment but if there's a breakdown in the system there could be contamination in the fungus. it's common in soil, decomposing leaves and even floating in the air. >> pelley: if the fungus is everywhere, as you describe it, why is it so dangerous in this case? >> reporter: in somebody with a normal immune system the lungs filter it out. when you inject it directly into the spine, that's like a straight highway to the brain. >> pelley: jon, thank you very much. it has been more than three weeks since that deadly terrorist attack on the u.s.
consulate in benghazi, libya. today, the will bean government finally allowed a team of f.b.i. agents to see the crime scene. four americans were killed in that attack, of course, including ambassador chris stephens. the agents, with a u.s. military escort, spent 12 hours at the consulate, though much of the evidence has already been compromised there. the violence in syria's civil war is spilling over its borders. for a second day, turkey fired artillery shells into syria. it was in retaliation for a syrian mortar shell that slammed into a house on the turkish side yesterday. five turkish civilians were killed, including three children. 10 people were wounded. today, turkey's parliament authorized military operations in syria. with the latest on this, we have holly williams, who is in turkey, on the border with syria. holly, the turkish prime minister said today he doesn't want war with syria, so why did turkey fire into syria again? >> reporter: well, the turkish
prime minister says he doesn't want a war. the push. >> public definitely didn't want a war. the problem is turkish government feels frustrated by its inenable to control what's happening in syria and to stop the chaos spilling across its borders. there are more than 100,000 syrian refugees here in turkey. back in june, a turkish military plane was shot down by syria, and i think it's for all of those reasons that today the turkish parliament voted to authorize the use of force against syria if necessary. essentially, turkey is sending a strong warning to syria, saying we don't want to fight you, but we will if you feel you give us no other choice. >> pelley: so how dangerous is the situation on the border now? >> reporter: well the u.s. state department said today so far turkey's response had been proportionate and appropriate. but the fear is this could escalate into a military conflict between turkey and syria. and that would be massively destabilizing for the entire
middle eastern region. it would almost certainly draw in other neighboring countries to the conflict. it could even draw in the u.s. because turkey is a nato alike and that scenario in this part of the world is very worrying. >> pelley: holly, thank you. some marines are finally home nearly seven decadees after being lost in war. in texas, the record drought has started a water war. and mission to mars, the rover's first big test when the cbs evening news continues. ♪ [ male announcer ] how do you turn an entrepreneur's dream... ♪ into a scooter that talks to the cloud? ♪
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get much of ther water supply from lake travis, a reservoir managed by the lower colorado river authority. last year, the drought caused lake level levels to drop by more than half, so this year, for the first time, state officials cut off most farmers' water supply. just 5% of the area's normal rice crop will be harvested this year. >> the drought just highlighted a condition that was already coming to be. >> reporter: which was? not enough water to go around for everybody to continue doing things in the way that they're used to. >> reporter: that's because lake travis also supplies drinking water for cities, including austin, and supports recreation around the lake, like janet kaler's marina. she points out last year, in the middle of the severe drought, nearly 60% of the water drained from the lake system, went to the farmers. >> they want things to remain as they always were. that's not the way the world
works. >> reporter: her marina is losing business. waterfront homes now sit hundreds of feet away from water. >> there's no question that there is a battle going on. look around you at the devastation of these businesses and the cost. it's immediate and now. >> a drought kind of makes you aware of what you don't have. >> reporter: becky motal heads the lower colorado river authority. the agency plans to build new reservoirs to meet demand from a population that cowl double by 2060, but that will take years. >> as the urban areas grow ask they have more of a demand for water, that water's got to come from somewhere. >> reporter: ron gertsen hopes that water will last long enough for his grandson to become a sixth generation rice farmer. >> i would love for him to have the choice. i can't say that that will be available to him. >> reporter: ultimately, he says, he may have to fight for that choice, not on a farm field but in a courtroom.
anna werner, cbs news, dallas. >> pelley: seven marines were laid to rest today at arlingtonf venauta. but it was only ream that the remains were identified using d.n.a. drivers in california are getting clobbered at the pump. why are gas prices spiking? that's next.il question of blood flow. cialis tadalafil for daily use helps you be ready anytime the moment's right. you can be more confident in your ability to be ready. and the same cialis is the only daily ed tablet approved to treat ed and symptoms of bph, like needing to go frequently or urgently. tell your doctor about all your medical conditions and medications,
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call or click to learn more. [ male announcer ] if you can't afford your medication, astrazeneca may be able to help. >> pelley: the price of gasoline has never been this high at this time of year. the national average tonight is $3.78 a gallon, and that is .38 higher than a year ago. in california, it's $4.32 a gallon, after going up .9 overnight. gasoline supplies are tight because of disruption at two refineries that supply california. nasa's newest mars rover is ready for its first big geology mission. curiosity has driven more than 400 yards since landing on the red planet in august. today, nasa said the plan is to have the rover scoop up some soil some time in the next few weeks, and analyze it for signs that mars was once able to support life. we also got a rare peek today at a dying star courtesy of a nasa
telescope. have a look. it's called a helix nebula, 650 lightyears from the earth. you're seeing its last gasp as it burpz out. nasa says the same thing will happen to our sun in about 5 billion years. the fight against hunger in california is getting a lift from a group of seniors. we'll have their story next. [ male announcer ] your mouth is cleanest after the dentist.
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>> pelley: finally tonight, it's difficult to believe but the government tells us about 50 million americans don't always have enough to eat. ben tracy found a group in california that's doing the part to help. ben saz they don't let food or experience go to waste. >> reporter: shirley elwell is 72 years old, and a great-grandmother. but just try telling her she doesn't belong on a forklift. >> watch out. the next thing i'll learn how to drive is a semi. >> reporter: elwell is part of an army of 500 very senior citizens, volunteers who run this warehouse in sacramento. katherine larue is 87. does this keep you young in some way? >> i think it does. it keeps uz moving. you know, we're not sitting around watching-- excuse me-- tv. >> reporter: what they are doing is feeding the hungry, taking in millions of pounds of excess food from grocery stores
that is past the sell-by date but still safe to eat and instead sending it off to local food banks. >> there's been a growing need, especially with the downturn in the economy, more and more people are seeking assistance. >> reporter: gary mcdonald is the c.e.o. of what is known as senior gleaners. last year they fed nearly 100,000 people with $10 million worth of food. and most of this would go to waste? >> america wastes 96 billion pounds of food per year. not all of that is salvageable, but a lot of that is. if we could salvage the food thes being wasted today, we could feed everyone in america, and that's what food banks are all about. >> reporter: these gleaners first got going 36 years ago. by heading out in fields and backyards collecting extra produce. tony lampa had more tomatoes than he could ever eat in his backyard. what made you make the call and say come out here and grab this stuff? >> what else am i going to do with it? >> reporter: a crew of four
gleaners pick the vines clean. but many of these volunteers need help themselves. they're on fixed income so they can take food from the warehouse pantry twice a week. >> we are not just stand in addition line at a food bank and accepting somebody else's work. we come here and we work, and then we have something to take home. >> reporter: knowing there are so many people struggling is what drives shirley elwell to stay on her forked lift. >> we've still got a lot of good years in us and we can help a lot of people and that's the main thing. >> reporter: golden years that have become a golden opportunity to give back. ben tracy, cbs news, sacramento. >> pelley: and that's the cbs evening news for tonight. for all of us at cbs news all around the world, good night. captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
tonight, we will continue our look back at the d.c. sniper shootings ten years later. they terrorized us in our own homes. but as scott broom explains, if today's technology existed ten years ago, things might have been different. >> reporter: this is the taro card and the extortion note left by the d.c. snipers during their 23 days of terror. calling police on fay phones, and we were dependent on television and radio broadcast for the latest information. that was 2002. this is the age of twitter and facebook. and for the curator on the sniper attac