August 28th, 2012
09:39 PM ET

CNN's Wolf Blitzer talks with Mitt Romney's sons

The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer aired part one of an interview with the Romney brothers, taped at the CNN Grill today. Part two aired in the 6 p.m. ET hour of the program on CNN. A full transcript will be posted on

Please credit all usage of the information to CNN’s The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer



August 28th, 2012
07:14 PM ET

Jeb Bush talks to CNN's Piers Morgan about Romney's public persona

 Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush talks to CNN's Piers Morgan about Mitt Romney's track record and "temperate" public persona.

"He’s been reluctant to share what’s in his heart and who he is," Bush says about Mitt Romney's public persona. Bush also notes that Romney has been the subject of many television attack ads that turn Romney "into the devil incarnate."

"I reject the notion that being successful and being faithful and being temperate is now no long acceptable," says the son and brother of two American presidents. Bush hopes that Romney's life story is "something to be modeled rather than to be ridiculed."

Topics: CNN
CNN expands CNN Beirut
August 28th, 2012
12:16 PM ET

CNN expands CNN Beirut

CNN correspondent Mohammed Jamjoom (@JamjoomCNN) will move to CNN Beirut, it was announced today by senior vice president of international newsgathering Parisa Khosravi.

Jamjoom, who has reported extensively from Iraq, Yemen, Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, will join CNN correspondent Arwa Damon (@ArwaCNN), and report across the region.

Read Khosravi's note to staff below the jump.


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Artists interpret 'Power' for 2012 Election
Visit the digital art gallery at
August 28th, 2012
11:34 AM ET

Artists interpret 'Power' for 2012 Election

CNN Digital has commissioned more than 20 artists to interpret the theme of “Power” as it relates to politics and this election season.  Their pieces were submitted through a variety of mediums, including drawings, sculpture, cartoons, photos, video and more.  The digital art gallery is divided into categories that explore various aspects of power – the origins of power, power struggles and the power of authority.

The idea behind “Power” is for users to explore the gallery, take time to interpret and analyze works of art, and hopefully elevate the conversation around politics and elections beyond the news of the day. This is the second digital art gallery that CNN Digital has commissioned.  The first, “Ripple”, was produced for the 10th anniversary of September 11.

Topics: CNN Digital • CNN Opinion • Enterprise
August 28th, 2012
10:26 AM ET

Mayor Villaraigosa: Pres. Obama will get "close to 70% of the Latino vote"

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (D) talks to CNN Anchor John Berman live at the CNN Grill during the RNC Convention in Tampa about Tropical Storm Isaac, 2012 race and the Latino vote.

Mayor Villaraigosa says, “I think when it's all said and done that President Obama is going to get somewhere close to 70 percent of the Latino vote. I think he is because the Republican Party and Mitt Romney have gone so far to the right on issues that are important to them. And it's not just immigration where he's talked about the self-deportation of 11 million people and called the dream act a handout. It's also health care. Nine million Latinos will benefit from the Affordable Care Act. It's also the cuts to education that will come with the Romney-Ryan plan.”

Starting Point with Soledad O’Brien airs weekday mornings from 7-9am ET on CNN.

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Topics: CNN • CNN Politics • John Berman • Starting Point
CNN Digital hires Abbey Goodman as Entertainment Editor
August 28th, 2012
10:08 AM ET

CNN Digital hires Abbey Goodman as Entertainment Editor

CNN Digital has hired Abbey Goodman as’s Entertainment Editor. She’ll be responsible for all of the entertainment coverage that appears across CNN Digital platforms – the Entertainment section, The Marquee Blog and on mobile.
Goodman brings more than 10 years of experience to CNN as an editor and pop culture writer covering TV, music, movies, style and other entertainment news. She is the former executive editor of, Us Weekly and On the Inside, a start-up celebrity guide to New York City. Goodman’s work has also appeared in many magazines and entertainment blogs, and she’s interviewed celebs like: Howard Stern, Nicki Minaj, Channing Tatum, Justin Bieber, Alec Baldwin, among others.

Goodman has a master's degree in Journalism from New York University, where she studied Cultural Reporting and Criticism. She started in August and will be based in Los Angeles.

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Topics: CNN Digital • Entertainment
August 28th, 2012
10:06 AM ET

CNN Exclusive: Life in Daraya, Syria

CNN has obtained an extraordinary account of life in the Damascus suburb of Daraya over the last two weeks, just before the neighborhood was overrun by Syrian government troops. The Syrian government has said it targeted Daraya to cleanse terrorist cells from the town, but this report shows the townspeople had only just begun to rebuild their lives after the last Syrian Army offensive nearly two months ago. Some of the images  are graphic and for safety reasons, CNN is not naming the journalist.

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Topics: Breaking News • Syria
August 28th, 2012
09:31 AM ET

Rep. Duffy (R-WI): "Romney might be a little stiff," but "ideas are great"

Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI) tells CNN Anchor John Berman that although Romney is “a little stiff,” his “ideas are great” and that’s what Americans care about.

Rep. Duffy says, “I think when you marry up like I did and Mitt Romney did, your wife says a lot about who you are and I think she humanizes him and brings a different vision of who Mitt Romney is. Some see Mitt as a kind of a stiff guy who is not very relaxed.”

Berman interjects, “Do you?”

Duffy responds, “Well, he comes across that way sometimes. I mean, the ideas are great. But when he’s by Paul Ryan or his wife he seems to loosen up a little bit. He seems more natural. She's going to show that side of Mitt Romney tonight.”

Berman follows up, “What does it say that this guy has been running for president for five years, he is a still seen as stiff by so many people, by the way, apparently including you?”

Duffy answers, “Listen, though he might be a little stiff, I think Americans care about policy. Can this guy lead a recovery? Can he put American back to work? Can he help us get on a trajectory to balance with our debt?”

Starting Point with Soledad O’Brien airs weekday mornings from 7-9am ET on CNN.

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Topics: CNN • CNN Politics • John Berman • Starting Point
‘A Stand in the Sinai’: A CNN Freedom Project Documentary
Eritrean refugees show their torture wounds
August 28th, 2012
09:27 AM ET

‘A Stand in the Sinai’: A CNN Freedom Project Documentary

  • Follow-up to CNN’s award-winning documentary ‘Death in the Desert’ which uncovered the shocking trade of organ trafficking in the Sinai Desert
  • Progress discovered in Sinai Peninsula since last year’s original

TX: Friday 21 September at 2130 BST

African refugees, mostly from Sudan, Ethiopia and Eritrea, face a dangerous journey crossing Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula as they seek a better life in Israel.

As reported in last year’s award-winning CNN Freedom Project documentary ‘Death in the Desert’, the reality that awaits these migrants is often slavery, rape, imprisonment and torture.

In ‘Death in the Desert’, CNN correspondent Fred Pleitgen uncovered evidence that many of these refugees trying to reach Israel had fallen into the hands of human traffickers in the Sinai. These traffickers then tortured the refugees, and in some cases harvested their organs for sale on the black market, leaving many of their victims to die.

In 2012, in ‘A Stand in the Sinai: A CNN Freedom Project Documentary’, Pleitgen returns to the Sinai and finds a different reality now awaits the constant flow of African refugees. He speaks to Bedouin tribal leaders who say they are now working to battle human trafficking in the region, offering medical support and safe havens for these refugees.

Bedouin Sheikh Mohammed Abu Billal tells Pleitgen these refugees usually come to him with “signs of torture and rape, dressed in rags and starved…methods of oppression to exploit them for money. The burden is heavy on me, but it is a responsibility called upon us by Islam…that is why I spend my money to harbour them and bring happiness to their hearts at any cost,” says Sheikh Mohammed.

“When the CNN Freedom Project first discovered the atrocities taking place in the Sinai, it was not enough to do a standalone report,” says Tony Maddox, Executive vice president and managing director of CNN International. “Fred’s continued commitment to this story speaks to the Freedom Project’s core mission: that is to uncover stories of modern-day slavery, bring them to light, raise awareness and hopefully contribute to effective change.”

Earlier this year, the U.S.-based Investigative Reporters and Editors, Inc. recognised ‘Death in the Desert’ with the prestigious Tom Renner Award for its investigative coverage of organised crime or other criminal acts, citing the CNN team’s “great personal risk in crossing the dangerous badlands of Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula to expose a network of human trafficking and organ sales.”

About The CNN Freedom Project

In 2011, CNN Worldwide launched ‘The CNN Freedom Project: Ending Modern-Day Slavery,’ a multi-platform initiative aimed at exposing the horrors of modern-day slavery, highlighting the growing efforts to stop the trade and exploitation of human beings and amplifying the voices of the victims. From debt bondage in India to sex trafficking rings in Southern California, the CNN Freedom Project has generated more than 250 stories of modern-day slavery. Many notable figures have partnered with the Freedom Project since its launch including Anil Kapoor, Demi Moore, COMMON, Mira Sorvino and Emmanuel Jal.’s Freedom Project blog on serves as the platform where users can participate in the global discussion and debate around modern-day slavery. The CNN Freedom Project is on Twitter – @CNNFreedom – and Facebook at Through these channels, users can connect directly with CNN about this cause, learn more about the organisations standing on the frontlines and see how they are affecting change.


Full air times for ‘A Stand in the Sinai’

Friday 21 September at 16:30 and 21:30 BST
Saturday 22 September at 14:00 and 21:30 BST
Sunday 23 September at 10:30 BST
Monday 24 September at 04:30 BST

For more information, please contact:

Joel Brown
Senior Press Officer
CNN Europe, Middle East & Africa
+ 44 20 7693 0967

CNN Digital welcomes Cindy Rodriguez as Editor for Latino audiences
August 28th, 2012
09:14 AM ET

CNN Digital welcomes Cindy Rodriguez as Editor for Latino audiences

Cindy Rodriguez joined CNN Digital as Editor for Latino audiences this week. Rodriguez will work with staff at and CNN Mobile as well as across CNN television platforms, including CNN en Espanol, to identify stories and perspectives relevant to a Latino audience. Rodriguez comes to CNN Digital from the Huffington Post, where she was associate editor for LatinoVoices.

Rodriguez holds a bachelors degree from Rutgers University, where she majored in journalism and Spanish. She also studied at the Universidad de Salamanca, in Spain, and at Macquarie University in Australia.

Rodriguez started with CNN Digital on August 27 and will be based in New York.

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