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'Star Wars' Actress Carrie Fisher Dead at 60; Trump Taps Former Bush Official as Defense Advisor. Aired 7-7:30a ET

Aired December 28, 2016 - 07:00   ET


VERCAMMEN: He said, "I'm grateful for the laughter, the wisdom, the kindness, even the bratty self-indulging crap that my beloved space twin gave me through the years."

[07:00:11] Let's reflect on the life and times of Carrie Fisher.


CARRIE FISHER, ACTRESS: I should have expected to find you holding Vader's leash.

VERCAMMEN (voice-over): Carrie Fisher, best known as Princess Leia in "Star Wars," has died. Fisher had a heart attack Friday during the final 15 minutes of a flight from London to Los Angeles. According to TMZ, Fisher was on a ventilator the entire time she was hospitalized, never regaining consciousness.

She's seen here in an audition tape with soon-to-be co-star Harrison Ford.

FISHER: R-2 has been safely delivered to my forces.

VERCAMMEN: Critics pointed to the strong chemistry between Fisher and Ford and with good reason. Fisher recently revealed that she and Ford were off-screen lovers.

ELLEN DEGENERES, TALK SHOW HOST: Forty years, is that right?

FISHER: Forty years. I thought I'd wait.

DEGENERES: OK. So you revealed that you were having an affair with Harrison Ford.

FISHER: I was.

DEGENERES: Well, you say it.

FISHER: Yes, I did.

DEGENERES: All right. So, how did that stay a secret for 40 years?

FISHER: I was good at that, wasn't I?

VERCAMMEN: Fisher was born in Beverly Hills. Mother, actress Debbie Reynolds; father, singer Eddie Fisher. FISHER: I was primarily brought up by my mother, but I saw my father.

VERCAMMEN: Fisher poked fun at the absurdities of showbiz life and all manner of self-medication, including taking pills to control her emotions.

FISHER: Any mood stabilizer is a weight gainer. So whether you feel better, but then you're fat. So what you gain is a loss. It's just -- it's not a good situation.

VERCAMMEN: Fisher spoke about being bipolar and often turned pain into humor, also writing "Wishful Drinking" and "Shockaholic."

Fisher was briefly married to singer Paul Simon in the 1980s. Years later, she gave birth to a daughter, Billie Catherine, from her relationship with agent Bryan Lourd.

She debuted in the acclaimed film "Shampoo."

FISHER: They're not. I wasn't like my mother.

VERCAMMEN: In between the "Star Wars" movies, Fisher landed a number of meaty roles. In "Soap Dish"...

FISHER: I think we found our waiter.

VERCAMMEN: ... and as Meg Ryan's wise-cracking friend in "When Harry Met Sally."

FISHER: Someone is staring at you in Personal Growth.

VERCAMMEN: But nothing could, would or perhaps should loom larger on screen than Fisher in "Star Wars.."

FISHER: Transported you. It was extraordinary entertainment film making.

LARRY KING, FORMER CNN HOST: Do you like the princess?

FISHER: I have her over sometimes. She's a little bitchy, you know?

KING: Yes.

VERCAMMEN: Carrie Fisher was 60.


VERCAMMEN: And as can only happen in Hollywood, I was speaking with fans on the Hollywood Walk of Fame when a man dressed as Darth Vader tipped up his helmet and said he has a life-long crush on Princess Leia and thus Carrie Fisher.

LEMON: I agree, I do, too.

HARLOW: Paul, thank you so much. What a woman. What do you remember most? LEMON: Besides the cinnamon buns? I really liked her role in "Soap

Dish." And I thought it -- it was campy; it was fun. But what I liked about her was that, when she wasn't the lead character -- she was a great character actress -- that she took the person who was the lead actress or actor and or actor and prop them up and gave them something to bounce off of, which was, you know, the mark of a great actress.

HARLOW: She was also this brilliant writer, and it's a lot of the things that she was not credited for. I mean, who really knew? I didn't know until I was reading about her in the past few days that she came in and was a script doctor to, like, "Empire Strikes Back" and "Hook" and all these great films. She -- and she said, "It's hard for women in Hollywood after 27. I'm not going to wait by the phone." And look at all this other work she did off screen.

LEMON: Yes. I like that she embraced that role, as well. Because so many actors and actresses become famous for many roles and then they resent it. But she embraced it, which is what you should do. Not often does that happen to anyone in Hollywood.

Coming up on NEW DAY, I need to tell you that we're going to talk to two of Carrie Fisher "Star Wars" co-stars. Anthony Daniels, who played C-3PO and Peter Mayhew, known for his role as Chewbacca. Both men will join us live in our next hour.

HARLOW: All right. Turning to politics. President-elect Donald Trump tapping a former Bush aide as a top counterterrorism adviser, but a scare in Trump Tower in Manhattan also last night sparked a fiery battle over who will pay to protect the president-elect when he is in New York City.

And CNN senior Washington correspondent Jeff Zeleny is in Florida at Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort with more. Good morning.


Donald Trump is rounding out his cabinet. He'll be potentially naming the two open positions yet this week.

But even as he looks ahead towards his presidency, now just 23 days away, he's looking back at his campaign, taking aim at President Obama, once again, on Twitter. Amid an extraordinary exchange among staff members about the security costs at Trump Tower.


ZELENY (voice-over): Donald Trump is filling a critical West Wing position, tapping Thomas Bossert, a deputy homeland security adviser in George W. Bush's White House, to be his chief adviser on homeland security, counterterrorism and cybersecurity.

THOMAS BOSSERT, TRUMP APPOINTEE, CHIEF ADVISOR ON HOMELAND SECURITY: The government in the United States at a federal level needs to do something to address the threat. [07:05:08] ZELENY: Bossert will work alongside retired Lieutenant

General Michael Flynn, who Trump already picked as national security adviser. Trump aides tell CNN Bossert will be on equal footing with Flynn. His portfolio is primarily international threats.

Bossert's appointment has some establishment Republicans and Trump critics breathing a sigh of relief, because Flynn's appointment stirred controversy. Yet, it's an interesting selection for Trump, who became a sharp critic of the Iraq War after initially supporting it.

DONALD TRUMP (R), PRESIDENT-ELECT OF THE UNITED STATES: Look at the war in Iraq and the mess we're in. I would never have handled it that way.

ZELENY: Bossert was a proponent of the Iraq War.

Trump is set to hold more meetings today at his Mar-a-Lago resort.

The Trump Tower in New York was briefly evacuated last night while the president-elect was in Florida. New York police say a suspicious package that turned out to be a bag of toys caused a security scare. The false alarm highlighting a battle over who will pay to protect Trump and his family in New York City, which the mayor estimates to be around $35 million since he was elected.

Trump's incoming White House press secretary Sean Spicer tweeting shortly after the incident, "Back to work here at Trump Tower after a false alarm. Thanks, NYPD."

Eric Philips, a spokesman for New York Mayor Bill de Blasio then tweeting, "No problem. We'll send you the bill."

Trump social media director Dan Scavino weighing in that "Philips is an embarrassment to the New York mayor's office and the amazing NYPD."

Philips firing back, "That's not very nice, Dan. But how about that bill? Work on it with us?"

That wasn't the only attack on Twitter. Trump once again touting his victory over Clinton while taking a knock at the man he will succeed. "President Obama campaigned hard and personally in the very important swing states and lost. The voters wanted to make America great again."


ZELENY: Trump also taking to Twitter to take credit for some strong economic news. Look at this tweet that he sent out last night. He said that "Consumer confidence here in the U.S. is at a 15-year high." He signed it, "Thanks, Donald."

Even though he did that in the third person, "Thanks, Donald," perhaps there wasn't room to add, "Thanks, Obama." Of course, President-elect Trump is inheriting the Obama economy.

HARLOW: But there's only 140 characters, Jeff Zeleny. That's Don's favorite part. Thanks, Donald.

All right, let's bring in our panel. CNN senior political analyst and senior editor of "The Atlantic," Ron Brownstein and CNN contributor and "Washington Examiner" reporter Salena Zito.

LEMON: Just put down the tweeter machine.

BROWNSTEIN: But look, it works. Right? Look at how much time all of us in the media spend responding. His ability to set the agenda through Twitter during the campaign and now potentially as president has proved to be a real weapon for him. It's given him a lot of headaches, but it also makes us spend a lot of time on what he wants us to spend time on.

LEMON: You know, I said something yesterday that we -- you know, if I were a news executive, that I would cover not his tweets. And then I said I would be more judicious about it. But no one wrote about that part.

But, really, I think that, do you think that we should be more judicious about -- because something is up. I'm sure some that people tweet and Donald Trump tweets.

BROWNSTEIN: Look, historically, everything the president of the United States says is news. And I think this is a new way of saying it.

But, being aware that what they -- what he is doing is often is try to drive a dialogue in a certain direction, that is a reality. I think you can't ignore it. But it is -- maybe he needs to be kept in better perspective.

HARLOW: Salena, let's talk about some of the tweets not from the president-elect, but with his team back and forth with the folks here in New York City. Mayor de Blasio here in New York has asked for $35 million to cover the $500,000 a day cost to protect the president- elect when he's here.

Obviously, we know his wife and his youngest son are going to stay here at least through the end of the school year. The question is who's going to pay for it and who should pay for it? Where do you stand?

SALENA ZITO, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, you know, one of the most interesting thing about the Trump Tower is when he's got the money and work with the city to build it, the lobby was to remain a public space. So, that's why people are coming and going through there, even though the president -- you know, under other circumstances, you might not be able to enter that space.

So, I think what's going to happen is there's just going to continue to be this public fight between de Blasio and Trump's team. And honestly, they both probably think it politically benefits both camps. So, I don't think it's going to stop. I think that New York will probably end up getting...

HARLOW: And Florida. Florida wants money for Mar-a-Lago protection.

ZITO: Yes, absolutely. And you know, I don't know what the end result is going to be. You know, we're entering new territory. But I think it probably benefits both camps to have these, you know, sort of fighting words.

LEMON: Ron, I've heard people say, you know, since it's costing the city of New York a half a million dollars a day, at least. It's also costing Florida. That maybe Donald Trump and the transition team should move to Washington, which is built for Secret Service and that sort of thing.

BROWNSTEIN: Right. Well, I think that's the underlying issue. It seems that he is committed to spending potentially more time out of Washington by far than is typical. I mean, Barack Obama did not go to Chicago every weekend.

And, you know, the potential for Donald Trump, with his family staying in New York, to spend a significant amount of time outside of Washington seems greater than for other presidents. And I think it may require the federal government to respond in some way to the financial obligation.

Yes, there is kind of a kind of political posturing each side against the other. Donald Trump lost 90 percent of the vote in the -- you know, in the borough that is being charged with protecting him. But there is a deeper underlying issue. The president of the United States, you know, the federal government ought to be shouldering, I think, the principle burden for protecting the president of the United States.

HARLOW: Isn't that what the extra 3 percent we pay in New York City to go towards? Taxes are fun.

Hey, Salena, let me ask you about this big "Washington Post" headline today. And that is that the Obama administration is announcing, you know, different sanctions including covert action and different diplomatic center against Russia soon. Right? They've got 23 days left.

The question is, what does President-elect Donald Trump do when he is the president? Let's listen to how his Republican colleagues in the Senate addressed this issue of how to respond to Russian hacking yesterday with Jim Sciutto.


SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R), SOUTH CAROLINA: There are 100 United States senators. Amy Klobuchar is on this trip with us. She's a Democrat from Minnesota. I would say that 99 of us believe the Russians did this, and we're going to do something about it, along with Senator McCain after this trip's over. We're going to have the hearings, and we're going to put sanctions together that hit Putin as an individual and his inner circle for interfering in our election. And they're doing it all over the world, not just in the United States.


HARLOW: It's basically a message, basically, Salena, to the president-elect. "Hey, you're on a totally different page than the Republican-led Congress."

ZITO: Right. You know, Lindsey Graham is probably always going to be that guy that will come out against Trump on every measure that they disagree with. You know, I think it was Trump that famously gave his cell phone number out when he was running against him.

You know, Mr. Trump is going to find out once he gets to Washington that there are three branches of government and, you know, he's going to have to deal with the Senate. You know, Trump will likely have learned from his dealings on how he dealt with Khan, the Gold Star family after the DNC convention, that if he digs a hole on certain issues, it's not going to play out very well.

I suspect when he gets to Washington and this becomes an issue, that he will either defer to maybe Reince Priebus to deal with it or just not address it at all. Since he doesn't talk with the press at this moment, he might not have to and he might just ignore it.

BROWNSTEIN: One thing that is worth discussing is he talked about it being done elsewhere. We have big elections coming in 2017 in Germany and France. And if you are sitting there as Vladimir Putin, you kind of look at the playbook in the U.S. and say this is a pretty effective playbook to introduce turmoil and tumult into other country's election.

And his goal seems to be to kind of weaken the western alliance and pull up the moorings from both sides of The Atlantic. Support for kind of populist right parties in the German and French elections have the threat of doing that. What's interesting is that, for their own reasons, that the Trump administration may be more sympathetic to those parties that we have seen that previous administrations, as well.

HARLOW: To that -- to that end, let's quickly listen to what President Obama said yesterday in this remark -- these remarks with Prime Minister Abe of Japan about -- that a lot of people saw as a veiled reference to the president-elect.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It is here that we remember that, even when hatred burns hottest. Even when the tug of tribalism is at its most primal, we must resist the urge to turn inward. We must resist the urge to demonize those who are different.


LEMON: Was that a swipe, Salena, at the president-elect? And, if so, what happened to all that good will in the beginning?

ZITO: Well, you know, President Obama is a politician. All politicians make swipes. He is incredibly eloquent with his words. And it was a way for him to get his job.

LEMON: You think it was a swipe?

ZITO: Absolutely. But you know, that's what politicians do. And that's sort of why people liked Trump, because he didn't fancy up his swipes. He just goes out and says them, right? And President Obama does it in a much more traditional sort of classy way, you know, of throwing his elbow without doing it directly.

[07:15:08] HARLOW: An interesting point. How do you want your insults delivered? Good point.

BROWNSTEIN: The taunt can't last.

HARLOW: Yes. All right. Guys, thank you very much. We appreciate it.

A lot of news to get to this morning, including Secretary of State John Kerry, who is set to outline his vision, his road map for Middle East peace in a speech today. This with only 23 days left in the Obama administration. Question on the timing. What impact will this message have, given the very strained relations between the United States and Israel. That's next.


LEMON: Welcome back to NEW DAY everyone. The city of Jerusalem canceling a vote today to approve the construction of hundreds of homes as a battle over settlements intensifies. The delay comes as Secretary of State John Kerry delivers a big speech today laying out the Obama administration's vision for peace in the Middle East.

Let's discuss now with Israel's ambassador to the United Nations, Danny Danon. Thank you for joining us this morning.

And let's start with that. What do you think John Kerry is going to say when he makes -- when he delivers his speech?

[07:20:02] DANNY DANON, ISRAELI AMBASSADOR TO THE U.N.: Truly, we speak about -- we don't need another speech. We don't need another U.N. resolution. We need renegotiation. We need the Palestinians to come to the table and negotiate with Israel.

And after the shameful resolution that's passed at the U.N. last Friday, we are skeptical about it. Because the Palestinians today, they say we don't need to negotiate with Israel. We can come to the U.N., and we can pass negotiations without even negotiating.

LEMON: The Palestinians have said they will not come to the table, as long as settlements are on the table. Is that enough to get the settlements to stop?

DANON: When you negotiate, you negotiate. The results of the negotiations without entering the room. You know how many hours Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sat the last eight years to negotiate? Less than seven hours. When you buy an apartment in New York, you negotiate for more time.

So, it's not serious. You need to come down and negotiate without precondition. We have a lot to ask for them: to stop the incitement, to condemn terrorism. We have a lot to ask and demand. But we don't do it with precondition. We tell them, sit down and negotiate.

LEMON: I spoke with Hanan Ashrawi yesterday, and she said basically, she believes that this is a land grab by Israel. Listen to this.


HANAN ASHRAWI, PLO EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEMBER: That also increasing house demolitions for the Palestinians, land theft, theft of resources; and they put up even more checkpoints and created the siege of Palestinian towns and villages. This is a sort of revenge.

LEMON: She says it's revenge.

DANON: We have heard that. But we have proved that we are capable of making peace. We have signed an agreement with Egypt. We gave away Sinai completely. We have signed an agreement with Jordan. But we negotiated.

So we Hanan Ashrawi, stop with the incitement, stop with the speakers (ph) who speak against Israel. Come to the room in Ramallah, Jerusalem or in New York. Let's talk peace without going to the U.N. and passing the resolution.

LEMON: So the question is, is that this has been, these settlements have been declared illegal by 14 of the nations. It was 14-0 by most of the world. Repeatedly condemn these settlements. Why is this happening and you're concerned that this paperwork is in place, but it's been condemned before.

DANON: We said we are willing to negotiate everything when we come to negotiate. But the fact that the U.N. will decide about the outcome of the negotiations. How can you achieve peace that way? I'm waiting to see what Secretary Kerry will say this morning.

But how can you achieve peace with the U.N. without allowing the Palestinians to negotiate? What will happen after the negotiations? We live in Israel with the Palestinians, but in order to live together, we need to sit down and negotiate.

LEMON: You're saying sit down and negotiate, and everyone needs to come to the table. But Netanyahu is cutting ties with the allies and cutting ties with all these United Nations.

DANON: No one is cutting ties. We are disappointed. We are disappointed from the administration here in Washington.

LEMON: Suspended working ties.

DANON: Listen, we are working with all our friends in the world, but we are disappointed, because when you read that resolution, it's so one-sided. You say that actually, there's no connection between Jews and Jerusalem. And the way we go, the faith of the Jewish people, it's illegal occupied by Israel. It's ridiculous. If you voted for...

LEMON: But that is not what international law says. It's not what the Geneva convention says.

DANON: That's disputed. When you read the resolution it says we have no connection to that part of Jerusalem. When you look at the history of the Jewish people, for decades. We continue to see our lands...

LEMON: Since negotiations for a two-state resolution started in 1967. It's always been said that Jerusalem has negotiated the exact territory of Jerusalem. Why is it different now? Why is that now off the table?

DANON: It's not off the table. For us, Jerusalem is the united capital of Israel, period. And when you come to the U.N. and you pass such a ridiculous resolution, and you actually tell the Palestinians, don't bother to negotiate with Israelis.

And I think in the future administration, we hope that we will see a new approach when President Trump will enter the White House. And that approach will be you should negotiate without us coming and telling you what to do.

LEMON: "Haaretz" is reporting that the two nations that were behind this were New Zealand and England. And Israeli officials are saying that they have iron clad information that it was America or the Obama administration. What is that iron-clad information?

DANON: Well, you read some reports of the media in Egypt yesterday. We would present the information that we have to the Trump administration. But you can...

LEMON: Why present it to the Trump administration when this is happening now? There's one president at a time here in the United States. If you have information that is showing that Barack Obama and this administration, there was some sort of collusion, why not present it now when they're in office?

DANON: You can say a lot of things about us, but we're not stupid. We know the administration was behind this shameful resolution. It is a fact. And we expect our...

[07:25:14] Don't you have more leverage now when you're in office and, again, because in 23 days, Donald Trump will be the president of the United States. That's not going to change. If you have information and if you say so because this is -- because, obviously, you have some sort of -- you have an issue with the Obama administration.

LEMON: If you want to embarrass them, for lack of a better word, why not do it while he's in office, because afterwards, what does it really matter?

DANON: I genuinely don't want to embarrass the president. I want to say what happened. LEMON: If you want to prove that there is collusion, why not do it

when he's the sitting president?

DANON: We would present it to the president, and he will decide whether to expose it or not.

LEMON: By doing that, isn't it saying that it's fluster, that it's just fluster. If you have iron-clad evidence and information, it would be out already.

DANON: You know, I will be very happy to come back to this studio maybe in a few months and then you will see that information. And I think the American people are not supporting this resolution. Eighty- eight senators approached the president and told him, apply the veto.

Don't leave Israel by itself in the Security Council. But the U.S. is supporting the Security Council. But I'm not sure that the U.S. is supporting those people against Israel.

LEMON: The U.S. ambassador, Donald Trump's pick, David Friedman says that the capital should be moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Do you agree with that?

DANON: Absolutely. It's about time. The bill has passed in Congress many years ago. Jerusalem is the capital of the Jewish people. And in some same way we respect the capital of the U.S. and any other capital. We expect the same from the U.S.

LEMON: Thank you, Ambassador.

DANON: Thank you very much.

LEMON: President-elect Donald Trump's latest pick for his administration says that he still supports America's role in the Iraq War. He is just one adviser that is a bit at odds with Mr. Trump's views on a number of things. We're going to dig into how that will affect his presidency, next.