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Plane Crashes with Brazilian Soccer Team on Board; Student Attacks Others on Ohio State Campus with Car and Knife; Raging Wildfires Force Evacuations in Tennessee. Aired 8-8:30a ET
Aired November 29, 2016 - 08:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[08:00:00] CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: Officials confirming the plane was carrying a now famous Brazilian football club. It crashed just miles from the Medellin airport after the pilot declared an emergency. We have CNN's Shasta Darlington. She has the very latest from Rio de Janeiro. This was a Brazilian soccer team. It's going to hit the hearts very heavy there.
SHASTA DARLINGTON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Chris and Alisyn, 75 people were killed when a chartered plane carrying a Brazilian soccer team crashed outside of Medellin Colombia. This was around 1:00 a.m. local time. The good news, if you can call it that, is that there were six survivors. Initially there were five people recovering in hospital, then afterwards they found a sixth person under the fuselage as rescue workers were struggling to find bodies. They found that sixth survivor.
This is obviously very tough news here in Brazil, a soccer mad country. The team is from a very small team in southern Brazil, a very tightknit community. We know that other survivors at least two of them are team members, but the plane was full of the traveling press corps, the support staff. And so people are waiting, gathering at the stadium, waiting to hear news about the survivors and of course about those who were killed. This is difficult. The team had initially taken off from Brazil, had a layover in Bolivia, then they were headed to a soccer tournament, just ecstatic right before they took off, celebrating the fact that they had clawed their way up to the top tier in Brazil's football league and they were headed off to represent not only their hometown but their home country in this important match, Alisyn, Chris.
CUOMO: Horrible situation, no question about that. I can't believe people lived. We have to know more about where it was in terms in how it was coming down, but you almost never hear about somebody surviving, you know, going into harsh terrain at speed on impact.
ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Absolutely. Just this hour, last hour, they found another person. The rescuers moved the fuselage and found another person who survived. It's remarkable. So we'll bring you all of the details on that as soon as we have them.
Meanwhile, there are also new details this morning about this attack at Ohio State University that injured 11 people. Investigators are looking into what led this Somali born student to plow his car into pedestrians, then stab people with a butcher knife. CNN's Rosa Flores is live in Columbus, Ohio, with more. What's the latest, Rosa.
ROSA FLORES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, good morning, Alisyn. Take a look behind me and you'll see that students are walking around, they're riding their bikes as they're heading to classes this morning. Classes resuming, this University trying to bring back some normalcy on campus, but from talking one eye witness, he says not only are students asking why, but could they have done anything differently?
FLORES: Ohio State University police naming student Abdul Razak Ali Artan as the OSU attacker. A U.S. official telling CNN Artan was a legal permanent resident originally from Somalia who came to the U.S. in 2014 via Pakistan. Authorities now looking into posts he made on his Facebook page, expressing grievances about crimes against Muslims, posted moments before the attack, saying, quote, "I am sick and tired of seeing my fellow Muslim brothers and sisters being killed and tortured, and I can't take it anymore." Back in August OSU's campus newspaper quoted Artan in a profile, saying he was scared to pray in the open as a Muslim. Investigators are looking into possible motives for the attack and say they cannot rule out terrorism.
POLICE CHIEF KIM JACOBS, COLUMBUS, OHIO: We're always aware that that's the potential and we're going to continue to look at that.
FLORES: Police say just before 10:00 a.m. Monday morning, Artan deliberately jumped a curb, ramming a car into a group of pedestrians.
CRAIG STONE, OSU CHIEF OF POLICE: He exited the vehicle and used a butcher knife to start cutting pedestrians.
FLORES: Eyewitnesses desperate calling 911.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The guy ran a car through a crowd of students, he did it purposefully.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm at Ohio State. Right outside there's a guy crashed his car into a bunch of people and ran out with a knife.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We need an ambulance here fast.
FLORES: A minute into the attack OSU police officer Harujko arrived at the scene, confronting a knife wielding Artan, shooting him three times and killing him.
MONICA MOLL, DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC SAFETY, OHIO: The officer engaged the suspect and fired shots and used deadly force to stop the threat.
FLORES: Eleven people wounded in the attack, all are expected to survive. As the attack unfolded, students barricaded doorways to avoid becoming a victim, the campus on lockdown for an hour and a half.
GOV. JOHN KASICH, (R) OHIO: Ohio State will be stronger having come through this.
[08:05:00] FLORES: Now police are still trying to determine a motive here and terrorism has not been ruled out. They have interviewed family members. They have interviewed witnesses and also scouring through surveillance video. Now, as for the Somali community here, we're talking to Somali community leaders, they told me they're afraid of retaliation against that community.
CUOMO: Rosa, thank you very much.
Let's turn now to the transition at the White House. President-elect Trump set to meet again with Mitt Romney. This is odd because members of his team have been savaging Romney for the last two days. Is he going to be secretary of state? Hard to know. Trump confirming one pick for us this morning. HHS, Health and Human Services, you're going to have someone, a Congress person who is a vocal critic of Obamacare there. For details CNN's Sara Murray live in Washington. What do we know about who's going to get the big job to fix the health care system?
SARA MURRAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Chris. You do have a couple of announcements today. Congressman Tom Price is going to get the job to be head of House and Human Services. And there's another health care related announcement this morning. Seema Verma is Trump's pick to be the administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services. An indication that Trump is moving forward on a couple of these picks even as there are still big looming questions about who he's going to go with for secretary of state.
MURRAY: Donald Trump is barreling ahead with another round of cabinet picks today, naming Georgia Congressman Tom Price, a fierce critic of Obamacare, to lead the department of health and human services.
REP. TOM PRICE, (R) GEORGIA: The most important thing that the America people understand and appreciate is that it's destructive to their health care.
MURRAY: And after this teaser from vice president-elect Mike Pence Monday evening --
MIKE PENCE, (R) VICE PRESIDENT ELECT: They'll be a number of very important announcements tomorrow.
MURRAY: More announcements could be in the pipeline today. But on one of the thorniest issues, who will fill the coveted position of secretary of state, it appears Trump is still pondering his options. The president-elect is slated to dine with Mitt Romney tonight, a signal the 2012 Republican nominee is still in the running for the job in spite of the protests of some of Trump's top aides.
KELLYANNE CONWAY, TRUMP CAMPAIGN MANAGER: The number of people who feel betrayed to think that Governor Romney would get the most prominent cabinet post after he went so far out of his way to hurt Donald Trump.
MURRAY: Adding to the intrigue, Trump plans to sit down with another candidate for the role of the nation's top diplomat today, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker. And after meeting with retired four-star General David Petraeus on Monday, Trump tweeted that he was very impressed.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A very good conversation and we'll see where it goes from here.
MURRAY: But Petraeus, who's in the running for a variety of national security and defense slots, could be a problematic pick. While Trump continually attacked Hillary Clinton on the campaign trail for her handling of classified information.
DONALD TRUMP, (R) PRESIDENT-ELECT: She deleted the e-mails. She has to go to jail.
MURRAY: Petraeus comes with his own baggage. He stepped down in 2012 as CIA director amid fallout from an extra marital affair and was convicted of a misdemeanor for sharing classified information with his mistress. He's currently on probation in that case.
MURRAY: Now rather than keeping the focus on his new cabinet pick this morning, Donald Trump appears to have some other plans. He's taken to Twitter to talk about the flag. I want to read you his tweet, saying "Nobody should be allowed to burn the American flag. If they do, there must be consequences. Perhaps loss of citizenship or year in jail." Now in the past politicians have also tried to put forward protections for the flag. Hillary Clinton when she was in the Senate proposed a law that would have outlawed flag burning. George H.W. Bush also wanted to do away with flag burning. But the Supreme Court has disagreed. When they weighed in on this they said that the right to burn the flag is constitutionally protected under the First Amendment, so this is the kind of thing that could be far beyond Donald Trump's reach. Chris, Alisyn?
CAMEROTA: I'll take it Sara, thanks so much for all of that. Let's bring in now Wisconsin Republican Congress Sean Duffy. Good morning, congressman.
REP. SEAN DUFFY, (R) WISCONSIN: Good morning, Alisyn. How are you doing?
CAMEROTA: I'm doing well. Do you want to weigh in on flag burning and whether or not this is a topic that we should be dealing with today?
DUFFY: I think there are a lot of other issues that the country cares about, but in regard to flag burning, I love my flag and I love what it stands for, and I hate those who want to go and burn it.
CAMEROTA: Yes. DUFFY: But I think the court is probably right that we want to
protect those people who want to protest and their right to actually demonstrate with disgracing our flag even though so many of us who love our country and love our flag object to it. I don't think we want to make this a legal issue. So I disagree with Mr. Trump on that and the court's probably right.
CAMEROTA: OK. So why then do you believe that the president-elect is tweeting this out? People do take his tweets seriously, particularly now that he is the president-elect, and he appears to be stepping on some of his own message about cabinet appointments. So what's the rationale behind that?
[08:10:00] DUFFY: Well, he can walk and chew gum at the same time. So as he's going through the interview process, putting his cabinet together to help build out the agenda that he talked out on the campaign trail he can still see certain issues that come up and talk about them on Twitter. And so I think he's a multifaceted guy who can do many things at the same time. So I don't think this takes away from the work he's doing to build out his administration.
CAMEROTA: Do you think this is possible that this was an intended distraction to get the media off the scent of his false claim that there were millions of illegal votes during the presidential election?
DUFFY: I think the real story there, Alisyn, I'm in Wisconsin, but you have Jill Stein and you have Hillary Clinton coming to Wisconsin and asking for a recount of votes when Donald Trump won by more than 22,000 votes. Both of them admit that they're not going to overturn the decision in Wisconsin, that our electors go to Donald Trump. They're wasting our county's time and our resources.
DUFFY: They're putting a stain on our state and our electoral system. I think this is Donald Trump's response to what Hillary Clinton has done with joining Jill Stein in asking for a Wisconsin recount.
DUFFY: Alisyn, this is frustrating because it was Hillary Clinton who was the one that was aghast, and this was going to be a constitutional breakdown, and democracy was in jeopardy if Donald Trump didn't accept the results. And here Hillary Clinton is protesting the results.
CAMEROTA: Hold on a second. She has accepted the results.
CAMEROTA: She conceded.
DUFFY: Not in Wisconsin. Not in Wisconsin.
CAMEROTA: If there were millions of $ people who voted illegally, shouldn't we look at that? DUFFY: So let me get to that in one second. She hasn't accepted the
results in Wisconsin, that's why she has joined Jill Stein in the recount.
I disagree with Mr. Trump. I think the president and the White House are right. This has been a fair and free election. We haven't had anyone hack our voting system. The results that have been reported by each of our states are accurate. Everyone should accept them, Jill Stein, Hillary Clinton, and Donald Trump. I don't think it behooves the American people or the American electorate to sit and cast stones at what happened on November 8th. Let it go.
And I don't understand why Mr. Trump is kind of sitting back and talking about the election that he actually won. Winners don't want to call into question the results. Winners want to go, I won, let's move on and let's govern. So Alisyn, why he's engaging in what Hillary Clinton is doing and Jill Stein is doing, I don't get it.
CAMEROTA: Well, neither do we, and you are one of his supporters and surrogates, so what is behind that?
DUFFY: Well, listen, I'm not in the room or I'm not on his Twitter feed, but I would think that he's offended by what's happening in Wisconsin and potentially in Michigan. And if you're going to call into question states that aren't going to flip from Trump to Hillary Clinton because there's too many votes there, maybe he's is, trying to call into question the fact that he won the popular vote.
CAMEROTA: But he didn't. He lost the popular vote.
DUFFY: No, I know. That's my point. He's trying to say, I won the popular vote.
CAMEROTA: Right, but he didn't.
DUFFY: Hillary Clinton didn't win Wisconsin, I know. She didn't win Michigan or Pennsylvania.
CAMEROTA: Right, but she's not claiming to. This is what -- look you're echoing what I think --
DUFFY: She is, Alisyn.
CAMEROTA: That's not exactly right, congressman. Hold on a second. Let's get through the details. What Jill Stein says is that there was some discrepancy between the paper ballots and the electronic voting machines that needs to be looked into. It's not going to change the course of the election, so that's it. Everybody accepts that.
DUFFY: So -- but so hold on a second, Alisyn. Why then is she asking for a hand recounted vote in Wisconsin instead of, you know, going through our normal electoral process in a recount through our counties? She's actually wanting to burn up time so our electors don't go to Donald Trump --
CAMEROTA: That's what you think is behind what Jill Stein is doing? DUFFY: Well, the question becomes, why then do it? She got one
percent of the vote. She's raised more for the recount than she did in the whole election.
DUFFY: Why would Hillary Clinton who made such a big stink, Alisyn, Hillary Clinton made such a big stink in the media, you on CNN --
CAMEROTA: But she's not saying that she doesn't think --
DUFFY: -- to suggest that anyone will call into question the election.
CAMEROTA: Look --
DUFFY: Hillary Clinton has joined this process. If she was a leader she would say, Jill Stein, enough. My donors, enough. This election is over. Donald Trump won.
CAMEROTA: Got it.
DUFFY: You're not going to flip Wisconsin, let's move on.
CAMEROTA: Understood. And if Donald Trump were a leader, what would he say about whether or not there was any potential illegal voting?
DUFFY: Well, he is a leader because he won the election.
CAMEROTA: Right. So what should a leader say?
DUFFY: He's been running a very successful business. I made this point earlier to you. I think he should chastise Hillary Clinton for engaging with Jill Stein. I don't think he should call into question the vote totals that he might argue gave him the full total of electoral votes.
[08:15:07] Again --
DUFFY: -- I don't think this behooves him to engage in this debate and this conversation. I think a better debate is who's going to build out his cabinet? What is the government going to look like? What are our top priorities to make America work again? How are we going to improve salaries, incomes, opportunities for American families that crossed from Democrat to Republican to vote for Mr. Trump?
I think those are the points that are better made.
DUFFY: The conversation that I think Americans care about. How do you secure your border? How do you defeat ISIS?
DUFFY: This young man in Ohio, how do we stop people from coming into our countries as refugees and killing or slicing up Americans?
We have to rethink these policies. I think those issues matter far more than a guy sitting up tweeting about an election that he actually won.
CAMEROTA: Congressman Sean Duffy, we appreciate it. We look forward to talking about all of those things as well. Thanks so much for being here.
DUFFY: Hey. Thanks, Alisyn.
CUOMO: All right. More breaking news that we are following. There are raging wildfires that are forcing thousands to evacuate from resort towns all through Tennessee. There are a number of homes, several hotels already destroyed.
We have someone on scene. CNN meteorologist Jennifer Gray. She has the situation right now.
What is the current status?
JENNIFER GRAY, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Well, Chris, we still have the raging wildfires. Despite the rain that happened overnight and early this morning, a break from the rain now. Should get more this afternoon which is helping firefighters, but it's a little too late.
We already have at least 30 structures burned. We have 16-storey hotel that we hear is damaged and possibly many, many others. We have hundreds of first responders here, firefighters here from all the surrounding areas, as well as the National Guard helping to put out the fires, helping people get to safety. The shelter behind me has about 1,300 people in it from the area hoping they will have a home to return to.
GRAY (voice-over): Wildfires threatening popular resort towns in East Tennessee.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Previous fires I've been part of could not have prepared me for what we have experienced over the past 24 hours.
GRAY: At least 14 fires near the Smokey Mountains National Park forcing mass evacuations.
JOYCE, EVACUATED, RESCUED FROM FIRE: We covered our face with wet towels and then we finally got in the car and we drove down the mountain a little ways and we ran into a tree that was over the road so we had to turn around. We couldn't see to get back up the mountain. GRAY: Endangering homes and businesses in nearby Gatlinburg and
Pigeon Forge. At one point, 30 buildings engulfed in the fires, including this 16-storey Hilton Hotel. This amateur video posted on social media shows the raging fires just outside the hotel's windows, guests anxiously watching from inside.
The fire now at the edge of the Dollywood theme park, the park not yet damaged but portions of the resort evacuated.
DANA SOEHN, PARK SPOKESWOMAN, GATLINBURG FIRE DEPARTMENT: We have multiple trees now falling with embers starting additional fires throughout the area.
GRAY: Wind gusts topping 70 miles per hour, combined with the worst drought in the region in nearly a decade, fanning the flames.
GREG MILLER, GATLINBURG FIRE CHIEF: We're dealing with the worst possible conditions imaginable.
GRAY: Top priority now that the sun is up will be assessing the damage and see where we stand with containing those wildfires that are still raging, Alisyn.
CAMEROTA: Absolutely. Keep us posted on what they can accomplish out there.
Meanwhile, President-elect Trump told "The New York Times" that he wants to be the president to broker peace in the Middle East. So what information does he need to know before heading to the negotiating table? We will get former Senator George Mitchell's take, next.
[08:22:23] CUOMO: All right. So, President-elect Donald Trump is continuing to shape his administration. That post of secretary of state is going to be very important. That's why we're focused on it, especially when you look at the Middle East. That's your chief diplomat, the secretary of state.
How are you going to handle that situation? What is the future for negotiations? You have the Iran nuclear deal as well. But peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians is as urgent now as ever.
To discuss, a man who knows, George Mitchell, former U.S. special envoy for Middle East peace under President Obama. He's the author of a new book, a path to peace, a brief history of Israeli/Palestinian negotiations and a way forward in the Middle East.
Senator, great to see you as always.
GEORGE MITCHELL, FORMER U.S. SPECIAL ENVOY FOR MIDDLE EAST: Thank you, Chris.
CUOMO: Thank you for being with us. Best to the family. This is a value, this book. I often feel that giving people what they
need to know in history is very taxing, difficult, you do it well, you do it succinctly. And you have to know what hasn't worked in order to understand what could work.
CUOMO: And what do you believe the main reason is, as we enter this new stage of another president who optimistically says I'd like to help bring peace to that region. What do you need to know?
MITCHELL: Well, the first point is that you don't take the first no, the seventh no, or the 20th no for the final answer. The pursuit of peace is so important, not just to Israelis and Palestinians, but to the people, to people around the world, particularly to the region of the Middle East that we have to continue to pursue it.
Secondly, that -- I believe that Israelis and Palestinians will ultimately, and I hope soon, come to the realization that despite the many difficulties associated with the two-state solution, it remains the only viable option for both of them to achieve it what they want.
CUOMO: Do you accept this fervor from the right of the Israeli political scene that seems optimistic about President-elect Trump and that they feel that President-elect Trump means the two-state solution is over? Do we see any proof of why they should be optimistic about that?
MITCHELL: I have not seen that. I don't know that.
CUOMO: I looked. I've never heard from Donald Trump during the campaign saying forget the two-state thing.
MITCHELL: I don't think he's ever said that. We wrote the book before the presidential election.
MITCHELL: I joined by a colleague, Alon Sachar, former State Department person, very experienced in the Middle East. But our book makes the argument that we look at the alternatives and they're not nearly as feasible, not as credible, not as likely to succeed as the two-state solution, although the two-state solution itself has not been successful.
[08:25:09] We've tried many -- we've had 12 presidents since Israel was created, 20 secretaries of state. Many envoys and no one has yet been able to bring it together. But I believe it can and will happen.
CUOMO: What needs to be different in order to make it happen?
MITCHELL: Well, I think there has to be a willingness by the leadership on both sides, Israelis and Palestinians to take the painful but necessary steps to get into negotiations, to stay in negotiations and reach an agreement. I don't believe peace in the region can be imposed externally by the United States or anyone else. It requires the participants.
CUOMO: Now, Donald Trump has many times in different contexts that people we have negotiating our deals stink. He's a real negotiator. He knows how to get it done.
Do you see any risks to his penchant for bravado and big talk going into the Middle East negotiations?
MITCHELL: Well, in the case of the Middle East, of course, he's right. We haven't been successful. We've tried to get an agreement and failed to get an agreement between Israelis and Palestinians. There have been successes.
Camp David produced a peace between Israel and Egypt. Later, President Clinton was actively involved between peace between Israel and Jordan.
So, there are examples of success. I believe it can and will happen with respect to the Israel and the Palestinians. And I hope very much that he is successful. I applaud his interest in the subject.
I hope he gets involved personally and he'll have undoubtedly a large team of people from the secretary of state on down, and we all should pray for his success in this regard.
CUOMO: What do you offer as advice for what you've opened from President-elect Donald Trump before he starts talking to those parties?
MITCHELL: Well, he's getting a lot of advice. I'm not sure he needs it from me.
CUOMO: Well, you've been there.
CUOMO: I mean, he's thinking about appointing his son-in-law right now to do it, who has no experience in the region.
CUOMO: As someone who does, what do you say?
MITCHELL: I think that it requires the creation of incentives for both sides rather than the imposition of an external force, that is ordering them what to do, punishing them if they don't.
Rather, I think that the way the success in this regard is through the creation of incentives. That will encourage each side to recognize what President George W. Bush said before he left office in a powerful speech in Jerusalem, Israel has a state. The people go live in fear and anxiety. They want security.
Palestinians don't have a state. The Palestinians are not going to get a state until the people of Israel have reasonable and sustainable security. They're not going to get that until Palestinians get a demilitarized, but sovereign independent state. Each should be vested not only in their own goal, but in the other achieving its goal.
CUOMO: This is one of those books, "A Path to Peace", that if you care about the issue, it's worth the time to read. You've really done it in succinct fashion.
George Mitchell, thank you so much for your service to the country.
MITCHELL: Thank you, Chris.
CUOMO: And for being on NEW DAY.
MITCHELL: Pleasure to be here.
CUOMO: Good to have you.
CAMEROTA: OK, Chris.
Up next, what is President-elect Trump trying to accomplish with his inflammatory tweets? We get the bottom line, next.