December 11th, 2007
12:53 PM ET

Airlines blocking passenger Bill of Rights?


FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Apparently the airlines would rather you wait…and wait…and wait…for as long as it takes. And no whining.

"USA Today" reports that the airlines are going to try to block a law that would punish them for stranding passengers on airplanes without certain necessities.

That's right. The airline's main trade group is going to federal court next week to contest New York State’s airline passenger bill of rights.

The law, which would be the first of its kind and is set to take effect January first, would require airlines to provide food, water, electricity and waste removal when a flight leaving from a New York airport waits more than three hours to take off.

It allows New York to fine the airlines up to one-thousand dollars per passenger if they don't comply.

But the "Air Transport Association" wants to stop the law from taking effect. They say only federal authorities can regulate airline service. Their lawyers argue that airlines would be hurt if other legislatures pass laws that vary from state to state.

Come on. Remember last year when some flights were delayed up to ten hours and beyond, and passengers just had to sit there? There was a lot of complaining, but the airlines haven't improved much. In fact, they've gotten worse. The Bureau of Transportation reports the number of flights waiting more than three hours to take off from U.S. airports is up about 25 percent since this time last year.

Here’s my question to you: What’s the message when no Republican candidate gets a 50% approval rating from his own party?

Filed under: Uncategorized
December 11th, 2007
12:52 PM ET

GOP voters looking for inspiration?


FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

It looks like Republicans are searching for a little inspiration.

A new poll shows that with just three weeks to go before the Iowa caucuses, an overwhelming majority of Republican voters across the country say they haven't made a final decision yet about who to support.

It's ugly out there. The New York Times/CBS News poll suggests that none of the Republican candidates is viewed favorably by even half of Republican voters.

Rudy Giuliani gets a 41% favorable rating. John McCain is viewed favorably by 37%, Mitt Romney by 36%, and Mike Huckabee by 30%.

According to the poll, 76% of Republicans say they could still change their mind about who to support, compared with 23% who say their minds are made up.

The Democrats, on the other hand, appear more satisfied with their candidates, and more settled in their decisions. Hillary Clinton retains a strong lead nationally. Also, Democrats see her as far more electable in the general election than Barack Obama and John Edwards and they think she'd do a better job at bringing the country together than Obama.

Here’s my question to you: What’s the message when no Republican candidate gets a 50% approval rating from his own party?

Watch the Cafferty File video here

Filed under: Elections
December 11th, 2007
12:51 PM ET

Is waterboarding ever OK?


FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

A former CIA officer says that waterboarding has "probably saved lives" but he now considers the tactic torture.

John Kiriakou participated in the capture and questioning of Abu Zabaydah, the first al Qaeda suspect who was waterboarded. Kiriakou says he didn't witness the waterboarding, but described Abu Zabaydah as defiant and uncooperative until the day it happened. He says after just 35 seconds of waterboarding, the terror suspect broke down and the next day told his American captors he'd tell them whatever they wanted.

Kiriakou says the technique probably disrupted "dozens" of planned al Qaeda attacks, led to the capture of other suspects and indirectly led to the capture of Khalid Sheikh Muhammed. But now he has mixed feelings about it, telling the Washington Post quote:

"Americans are better than that… Maybe that's inconsistent, but that's how I feel. It was an ugly little episode that was perhaps necessary at that time. But we've moved beyond that." unquote.

Meanwhile, CIA chief Michael Hayden is appearing before congressional intelligence committees today and tomorrow to answer questions about the agency's destruction of those videotapes showing the use of so-called "alternative" interrogation techniques of two al Qaeda suspects.

The New York Times reports that CIA lawyers gave written approval in advance for the destruction in 2005 of hundreds of hours of these videotapes.

Here’s my question to you: Are there any circumstances under which waterboarding or enhanced interrogation techniques are justified?

Interested to know which ones made it on air:


Filed under: CIA