John Berman and Zoraida Sambolin to co-anchor Early Start
June 26th, 2012
03:40 PM ET

John Berman and Zoraida Sambolin to co-anchor Early Start

Ashleigh Banfield moves to CNN Newsroom

Next month John Berman will co-anchor Early Start with Zoraida Sambolin. Berman will also contribute to other CNN programs and CNN.com.

CNN Anchor Ashleigh Banfield will move to CNN Newsroom to anchor her own program from 11am – 12pm ET. Kyra Phillips will move to HLN to lead a new daytime program later this summer.

Early Start airs weekday mornings from 5-7am ET on CNN.

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Topics: CNN • Early Start • Zoraida Sambolin
March 13th, 2012
08:19 AM ET

CNN legal contributor on FL shooting of Trayvon Martin: Stand Your Ground law moves Castle Doctrine to the street

CNN Legal Contributor and Criminal Defense Attorney Paul Callan explains 'Stand Your Ground' law in connection with the shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Florida.

Callan tells CNN's Ashleigh Banfield, "…The police have said Mr. [George] Zimmerman, when he was questioned, indicated that he was acting in self-defense, that [Martin] had attacked him and that he had the right to protect himself with a weapon. And Ashleigh, I have to tell you, Florida is one of about 15 states in the United States that have something called a 'Stand Your Ground' law…. And it's very easy to assert self-defense in Florida. This law was signed by Governor Jeb Bush in 2005, and it changed the law in Florida. It said basically that even if you're outside of your home, if you think you're under attack and you have to protect yourself, you can use deadly physical force if you're in fear. You don't have to run or retreat.”

When Banfield asks if the 'Stand Your Ground' law is different than the 'Castle Doctrine,' he adds, “… What Florida has done is it's taken the 'Castle Doctrine,' which means you, basically, can protect your home and it's allowed you to use that same doctrine in the street. It moves the 'Castle Doctrine' to the street, and they name it 'Stand Your Ground' in Florida.”

Early Start with Ashleigh Banfield & Zoraida Sambolin airs week mornings from 5-7am ET on CNN.

March 7th, 2012
10:47 AM ET

Democratic strategist on Romney: pessimist about economy, but 'he gets up and he recovers'

On Early Start Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen predicts that while Romney’s pessimistic views on the economy could hurt him in the general election, he is capable of recovering. Rosen also believes that women will play an important role in this election due to the contraception debate.

Rosen says, “Going head to head with Mitt Romney for the next several months would actually be fairly good for President Obama because Mitt Romney is going to talk down this economy. He is a pessimist about it. He doesn’t really have any answers that are new and I think the American people wouldn’t like that the longer it went on. And I think that President Obama could handle that conversation and debate really well.”

When asked by CNN anchor Zoraida Sambolin about how the primary process could affect Romney's general election campaign, Rosen responds: “Democrats these days love to talk about how weak Mitt Romney is as a candidate and he is, in my view. But what we have to remember is that every time he gets counted out… He has an organization. He has a smart campaign team. He gets up and he recovers… There is nothing better in a long term campaign than somebody who can recover and win.”

On female voters, Rosen continues, “Not a lot of discussion about women in this campaign… until all of the sudden we find ways to discriminate against women in their health coverage, yet again. You ever notice how when men have medical issues they are medical, but when women have medical issues, they are somehow always political… Republicans have actually woken women up with this crazy conversation about contraception.”

Early Start with Ashleigh Banfield & Zoraida Sambolin airs week mornings from 5-7am ET on CNN.

March 1st, 2012
09:39 AM ET

Red Cross: shelter, food, emotional support in place for Harrisburg residents

Red Cross representative Tammie Pech speaks with CNN's Ashleigh Banfield on the response efforts for residents in the devastated town in Illinois.

Pech says, "We want to make sure that people are safe. So we've set up a shelter here in Harrisburg. We want to make that people have food. That they have emotional support and they have things that they need and their immediate needs are being met."

She adds, "The very best thing anybody can do to help us support us is give the gift of time, blood or money."

Early Start with Ashleigh Banfield & Zoraida Sambolin airs week mornings from 5-7am ET on CNN.

March 1st, 2012
08:05 AM ET

Harrisburg hopeful despite damage

Reporting live from Harrisburg, Illinois, CNN anchor Ashleigh Banfield speaks with "The Daily Register" reporter Christy Stewart who says residents are hopeful despite extensive storm damage.

Early Start with Ashleigh Banfield & Zoraida Sambolin airs week mornings from 5-7am ET on CNN.

March 1st, 2012
07:38 AM ET

Branson Mayor: We were fortunate

Branson, MO Mayor Raeanne Presley on coping with the aftermath of deadly storms that hit the town Wednesday.

Early Start with Ashleigh Banfield & Zoraida Sambolin airs week mornings from 5-7am ET on CNN.

February 28th, 2012
09:04 AM ET

Independent strategist on MI primary: if Democrats show, Santorum could win

Democratic Strategist Kiki McLean, Republican Strategist Trey Hardin and Independent Analyst Goldie Taylor explain who has the most to gain and lose in today's primary contests in Michigan and Arizona.

On open primaries, Taylor says, “Well, you know, people get to choose up until the last moment if they're going to be a Democrat or Republican that day. I think it's a free and open process. I actually don't agree with party registration. I should be able to choose up until the moment that I vote which party I'm going to, you know, decide to go with."

On political parties trying to influence voters from opposite parties, Taylor states, “But at the end of the day, this might work. You know, turnout in Michigan is expected to be so very low, if you get 10,000, 20,000, 30,000 Democrats to show up and vote for, you know, Santorum, you know, he could really pull this out, and I think he's running ahead anyway.”

Early Start with Ashleigh Banfield and Zoraida Sambolin airs week mornings on CNN from 5-7am ET on CNN.

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Topics: Ashleigh Banfield • CNN • CNN Politics • Early Start
February 10th, 2012
09:02 AM ET

Former Amb. to Syria: no power prepared to use military force

Ted Kattouf, former U.S. ambassador to Syria, discusses the violence in Syria and the U.S. options for intervention.

Kattouf tells CNN’s Ashleigh Banfield, “Once Bashar al Assad realized that the Russians and the Chinese had his back, he's going all out to try to crush any resistance to his regime. He feels he has a narrow window in which to operate and they're going all out, particularly in these pro-opposition neighborhoods that have armed men in Homs.”

He continues, “The president comes from a sect of Shia Islam that makes up about 10 percent to 12 percent of Syria's population. Meanwhile, the Sunni Arab population of Syria is around 67 percent to 70 percent. And they've had enough of discrimination and of poverty and the like, and they want this regime gone. But the Alawites who dominate the military and intelligence services feel that if they lose power, it could be them who are on the receiving end of brutal treatment…. Ashleigh, we have to understand that there is no power, not even Turkey, which borders Syria that is prepared to use military force to bring down Assad. Now, that could change over time.”

Early Start with Ashleigh Banfield and Zoraida Sambolin airs week mornings from 5-7am ET on CNN.

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