Coming up Wednesday

Wildfires burn through Colorado causing thousands to evacuate, and protests in Turkey are in 13th day. Tune in at 7am ET.
June 27th, 2012
06:55 AM ET

Starting Point live blog for Wednesday, June 27th, 2012

This morning, "Starting Point" is live at 7am Eastern. Soledad O'Brien will talk with our panelists, CNN contributors Will Cain and Margaret Hoover, and political comedian John Fugelsang. Our panel will be talking about the following top stories:

* Colorado wildfire of 'epic proportions' displaces 32,000; tests firefighters

After days of flooding, Tropical Depression Debby set to leave Florida

NRA pressure could push some Dems to vote contempt for Holder

Share your comments in the section below. If you're not by a TV, you can watch us here at Let's get started.


Filed under: Live Blog
The Big Tease
June 26th, 2012
10:21 PM ET

The Big Tease

Our Starting Point Wednesday... the Supreme Court. We're talking the politics of immigration and health care with Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) at 7am ET  and Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) at 8am ET. We'll also talk about the vote to hold AG Holder in contempt and how the NRA is trying to influence votes in Congress.

And we've got a show full of great guests and good stories:

7:30am ET - We're talking to Andy Copeland about his daughter Aimee, who has been battling a flesh-eating bacteria. She's finally expected to be released from the hospital Monday.

7:50am ET - Pat Tillman's wife Marie joins us to talk about her new book, "The Letter." She talks about their romance, from high school sweethearts to the letter that Pat left, "just in case."

8:10am ET - Drew Brees talks to us about his work to get younger athletes tested for concussions. We'll also talk about the NFL Bounty Scandal.

8:30am ET - Magic Johnson is in studio to talk life post-NBA. He's has great success in business, but now he has a new venture - running his own TV network.

8:40am ET - Amy Winehouse's dad Mitch joins us to talk about his new book, "Amy, My Daughter"

All this and more live on "Starting Point with Soledad O'Brien" at 7am Eastern on CNN.

June 26th, 2012
11:45 AM ET

Toobin: 'I'd be very surprised if SCOTUS upholds health care law in full'

The Supreme Court is expected to rule on the constitutionality of the health care law championed by President Obama this Thursday.

Referring to the day of the ruling as the "nerd Super Bowl," CNN’s senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin tells  Soledad O’Brien that he will be surprised if the court upholds the law in full on Starting Point this morning.

In terms of how the ruling falls in relation to the timing of the election, Toobin says, “[The Supreme Court] is very much aware of the politics surrounding everything they do.”

However, Toobin notes that he does not think the Supreme Court will “sit around and talk about what the political fallout of their decisions will be.”

Watch more from Soledad’s interview with Jeffrey Toobin in the clip above.

Filed under: Health care • Supreme Court
June 26th, 2012
11:36 AM ET

Tough Call! Do 'shaming' punishments undermine justice?

Reports of "shaming" punishments are increasing across the country, as reports of unconventional sentences like cutting off a child's ponytail, or forcing people to sleep in a doghouse instead of a jail continue to surface.

Jonathan Turley, a professor at George Washington University, says "shaming" is a disturbing trend that undermines justice.

Soledad O'Brien and the Starting Point panelists weigh in on the practice in today's "Tough Call."

Filed under: Tough Call
June 26th, 2012
11:30 AM ET

Get Real! shows Mac users pricier rooms

On it's website, online travel agency Orbitz claims that it wants to be your best source for cheap travel rates on plane tickets, rentals and even cheap hotels. However, according to reports, the site's cheap rates depend on the type of computer you use.

Orbitz found that people who use Apple Mac computer spend as much as 30 to 40 percent more a night on hotels, as opposed to people who use PCs. According to the Wall Street Journal, the company has started to use that information to predict a customer's spending habits.

The Journal claims that Orbitz shows Mac users different, more expensive rooms on their site. Soledad O'Brien and today's panelists discuss the practice on Starting Point today.

Filed under: Get Real
June 26th, 2012
11:22 AM ET

Jada Pinkett Smith explains why she became involved in the fight against human trafficking

Jada Pinkett Smith is using her star power to fight child trafficking and sex slavery, which 200,000 minors fall victim to every year in the United States.

“I could’ve very easily been one of these girls,” Smith tells CNN’s Soledad O’Brien on Starting Point.

Smith began her campaign against human trafficking after her daughter Willow became interested in the cause after watching the Kony 2012 video.

“There are girls in our country, her age that were being sexually exploited and she couldn’t believe it,” Smith explains. “I started to do my own research and a whole world opened up to me.”

The majority of victims that are sex trafficked in the U.S. are children, according to Smith.

“There is no human being on this planet who should have to endure treatment like that and especially a child,” she says.

For more info on sex trafficking go to or

Filed under: Human trafficking
June 26th, 2012
11:16 AM ET

Rep. Rangel: 'Fired up and ready to fight' in today's NY Democratic primary

(CNN) - Rep. Charlie Rangel is fighting for the Democratic nomination in a newly redrawn New York district after a more than four-decade-long congressional career.

He has been one of the most high-profile lawmakers who hit a low point in 2010 after his censure on the House floor.

The 21-term representative is locked in a five-way race Tuesday for the nomination in his Harlem-area district that now has more Latino-Americans than African-Americans, a shift that has no doubt helped Rangel's fiercest competition, New York state Sen. Adriano Espaillat.

On Starting Point this morning, Rep. Rangel responds to critics of his ethics record and explains why he is passionate about continuing his political career.

Filed under: Politics
June 26th, 2012
11:09 AM ET

Russell Pearce: '9/11 would have been averted if immigration laws were enforced'

Former Arizona State Senator Russell Pearce was a driving force behind SB 1070, Arizona’s immigration law.

Pearce tells Soledad O’Brien on Starting Point today that the law is necessary because “the sovereign state of Arizona has a right to protect its citizens and jobs for Americans and secure its border.”

What does Arizona's immigration law do?

“Apparently to the cheap labor, the cheap vote crowd it’s okay,” says Pearce. “The cost in billions of dollars is okay for them. It’s outrageous. Do you know how the immigration law has been enforced? Reasonably enforced? 9/11 would have been averted. Four out of the five main hijackers were stopped by law enforcement and let go and were in the country illegally.”

Watch more from Soledad's interview with Russell Pearce on CNN’s “Starting Point” in the clip below.

Filed under: Immigration
June 26th, 2012
11:04 AM ET

Are commercial airlines putting passengers in danger? William McGee discusses industry in new book

Invasive TSA patdowns and expensive ticket prices might not be your only concern when flying anymore.

In his new book "Attention All Passengers: The Airlines' Dangerous Descent and How to Reclaim Our Skies," William McGee claims that commercial airlines have been cutting corners, and in many cases, putting passengers in danger.

McGee explains the problems with the airline industry on Starting Point this morning.

Filed under: Airline industry
June 26th, 2012
10:52 AM ET

How will the SCOTUS decision about Arizona's immigration law affect other states? Alabama Attorney General weighs in

Alabama used Arizona’s immigration law as a basis for its own immigration law HB 56, which is now being challenged in the 11th circuit court of appeals.

Alabama's law has measures saying that it’s a crime if someone fails to carry their immigration papers and it’s a crime for an illegal immigrant to solicit work in the U.S., both of which were struck down in Arizona.

However, Alabama’s law is similar to Arizona’s in that both have the “show me your papers” provision. Soledad O’Brien asks Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange on CNN’s “Starting Point” what reasonable suspicion will look like in his state in relation to this provision.

In order to stop someone, Strange says “you have to have a reason to stop them. You can’t profile anyone. You can’t pick them out because the color of their skin or the language they speak –they have to have violated a law.”

Watch more from Soledad's interview with Attorney General Strange on CNN's “Starting Point” in the clip above.

Filed under: Immigration
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