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CNN LARRY KING LIVE
Are Found Bones Caylee Anthony's?; Interview with Bill Ford; Interview With Sarah Jessica Parker
Aired December 16, 2008 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, breaking news in the Caylee Anthony case -- the missing toddler's mother jailed mother denied access today to pictures and video of a recovered skull and trail of tiny bones.
Is it Caylee and when will we know?
Plus, the Adam Walsh disappearance no longer an unsolved mystery.
And Bill Ford exclusive -- the auto icon's great grandson is here. He'll tell us what the Ford Motor Company wants from the government.
And then Sarah Jessica Parker -- she campaigned for Obama and now knows Caroline Kennedy, too, and now she wants to help the world.
All next on LARRY KING LIVE.
We begin with the ongoing saga of that strange case in Florida.
Our panelists are, in New York, Ashley Banfield, the anchor of Banfield & Ford "In Session."
In San Jose, Mark Geragos, the noted defense attorney.
Here in Los Angeles with us is Dr. Lawrence Kobilinsky, the forensic expert, professor at John Jay College. He's been consulting, by the way, for the defense.
And Stacey Honowitz, the assistant Florida state attorney, who, by the way, specializes in prosecuting cases involving child abuse and sex crimes.
What's the latest, Ashley, in this matter?
ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, ANCHOR, "IN SESSION": Well, tonight, the sheriff has at least released the size and scope of the actual search and recovery area where these bones were found. They're actually looking at a half acre, Larry. That is a very large murder scene. And they're sifting through evidence in that entire area.
They expect it's supposed to be wrapped up by either tomorrow or Thursday. And they're also saying that there are 20 to 30 investigators at any given time on that scene. And then, of course, today, that big news out of the courtroom being that Casey Anthony's attorneys wanted three different motions, basically for what they say is relief in their case. But the judge essentially smacked them all down, saying they don't have the rights to this case until there's a positive I.D. on those bones.
KING: Geragos -- Mark, doesn't that sound logical?
MARK GERAGOS, ATTORNEY: Well, I think that that's the correct ruling under the law down there. Stacey will correct me if I'm wrong. The -- and, obviously, the defense is trying to get in and at least have a parallel investigation, which is not uncommon in a case like this. I think it makes some sense.
So I can understand what the judge is doing.
I'm a little surprised if they really don't know that it's already her. I -- I think that they could have done the mitochondrial DNA already with the hair -- or at least preliminarily have taken a look at some of the other identifying things...
KING: Good point.
GERAGOS: ...especially if there were clothes found.
KING: Dr. Kobilinsky, why don't they have a result already?
DR. LAWRENCE KOBILINSKY, FORENSICS EXPERT, ANTHONY DEFENSE TEAM: Well, you have to remember, this mitochondrial DNA is not a simple procedure. It's labor intensive, sequencing backwards and forwards, dotting all the Is cross (INAUDIBLE)...
KING: What does that mean, mitochondrial?
KOBILINSKY: Well, mitochondrial DNA is usually plentiful, whereas the routinely tested nuclear DNA is far more scarce, especially in a decomposing body.
KING: So if you've got plentiful, why not an answer?
KOBILINSKY: Well, it still takes time. It's got to be done right. It's better to do it more slowly and get the right answer. And I think that we should have answer in days, certainly before the week is out.
KING: Did you want the defense to have what they found?
KOBILINSKY: I think it is critical that defense has access to their findings and their reports and an opportunity to test the sample independently.
KING: Stacey, how do you view of how long this is taking?
STACEY HONOWITZ, ASSISTANT FLORIDA STATE ATTORNEY: Well, you have to remember, I mean they have to be methodical, they have to be slow and they have to be accurate. If they weren't, the first thing the defense would say is it's a shoddy investigation, look how quickly they work, look how quickly they were to try to get an answer.
So you can never put a time line or a time factor on how long it's going to take for this investigation. That's what the defense seems to be frustrated about. They were there on Friday. They said it was going to be done by Saturday and on and on.
So it's not taking such a long time. They want to be sure that what they're doing is correct. So we really don't know what -- you know, we won't know when it's going to be finished.
KING: Ashley, is the defense rightfully concerned about the possible moving of materials and changing materials?
BANFIELD: I think so, yes. I think what we've seen over the years, as forensics and CSI have become so pristine, is that litigation becomes very -- very, very careful with regards to the chain of custody, the preservation of evidence, etc.
Like, for instance, today in court, Larry, the sheriff's office and the M.E. the medical examiner -- said they want to take a three inch piece of bone that was recovered from this site and they want to macerate it. They want to pulverize it and completely destroy it so that they can do toxicology tests on it.
Well, clearly, if you're the defense attorney, you want to have some access to it before you can no longer have access to it.
So these are the kinds of issues they're concerned about.
KING: Mark, are there any positive clues other than the close location to the house?
GERAGOS: Well, I -- if you believe what's been reported, there was an article of clothing that was contained and that should be, I would assume, either readily identifiable or a way that you can match that up.
I would think that the duct tape is something that is going to be heavily focused on. And the bag itself that the body was found in. Those are the items that are going to be tested and probably already have been tested. And they're going through and looking for trace evidence.
KING: Dr. Kobilinsky, is this beginning to look like a duck, acts like a duck, walks like a duck, it's a duck?
KOBILINSKY: We don't know. Quite frankly, we don't even know if this is Caylee or not. But I -- I'll tell you, it's clear that the FBI is looking just at those things that Mark just mentioned -- the plastic bag, the duct tape a tremendously important source of information. And, clearly, they did a search of the home and they're looking to match up knowns and unknowns, as expected.
KING: Stacey, why, in a local crime, is the FBI involved?
HONOWITZ: Well, you know, always when it's, number one, a high profile case or a case of this intensity, the FBI lab has certain technology that is far more advanced, sometimes, than the local lab. So it's not even just a high profile case, it's in general. The local lab might not have the most high tech procedure that the FBI does. So a lot of times, things are sent out to the FBI lab. And I just wanted to say one thing with regard to what happened in court today. What the judge did was, he didn't necessarily knock down the defense's motion. The bottom line is we don't have a proper identification yet of this individual. People can speculate. People can say it all matches up, it looks like a duck, it walks like a duck, it must be her.
But without that proper identification, he cannot let the defense...
HONOWITZ: ...really have a stab at what's going on.
KING: All right.
We'll be right back with more on this case.
When we return -- by the way, Vice President Joe Biden -- Vice- President Elect Joe Biden is here Monday night -- an exclusive prime time appearance.
We'll be right back.
KING: Ashley Banfield, we should be safe to point out, so that we don't risk prejudgment, that even if this is the child, the mother may not have been the killer, correct?
BANFIELD: Well, without question. Anybody who is even charged with first degree or facing the death penalty -- and she is not facing the death penalty, but still could -- is presumed innocent. And that is why her defense lawyers have made...
KING: You would hope.
BANFIELD: Well, you would hope, exactly. And it's problematic because there are a lot of potential jurors in that pool down there who are watching us, who are watching every cable news show about Caylee Anthony, every development and may become somewhat swayed in one way or the other about evidence that may ultimately be ruled inadmissible in this courtroom.
And this is why her attorneys are working so hard almost, Larry, to put the cart before the horse, before we know who these bones belong to.
KING: Is that one of the dangers -- not that we can do anything about it, Mark -- in so much coverage?
GERAGOS: Well, is there a danger?
Yes. KING: Yes.
GERAGOS: In fact, I think that -- I think one of the problems is what I've kind of consistently argued in these cases, is that we ought to import what England has, which is this Contempt of Court Act, that when you have one of these cases that receives this super-sized coverage, that at a certain point, once somebody is arrested, you just shut down coverage or delay it until after the trial. Because otherwise, there isn't anybody within a 500 square mile radius of that area there who presumes her to be innocent. I mean she's prejudged guilty and signed, sealed and delivered.
KING: As a consultant to the defense, Dr. Kobilinsky, does that not present a roadblock?
KOBILINSKY: Well, it certainly does. But you know something, while people are talking about the case and the public -- the public's attention is here, the analyses are going on. The testing is going on. This is a forensic science case. This is not about credibility or a inconsistencies in what Casey has said. It's about the science.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well...
KOBILINSKY: And the science will show that she either did it or didn't.
HONOWITZ: Well, they might not even have found the body...
HONOWITZ: I mean, but you have to remember one thing. She was indicted on first degree murder prior to them ever having a body. So they were prepared to go to trial even before this body was found.
So although it's going to hinge on forensics -- a lot of it is going to hinge on forensics, there might have been a time when a jury would have heard all this evidence, would have heard a series of circumstances and they had to make a decision without having a lot of this physical evidence.
BANFIELD: Yes, I'll beg to differ on that. I'll suggest that this could be a great forensics case, but this is one heck of a circumstantial case. And you will hear many people in the business of law say sometimes a strong circumstantial case is better than a case with direct evidence.
GERAGOS: Well, Larry...
KING: You -- Mark?
GERAGOS: Let me echo that. The -- this is a case, notwithstanding the forensics and what the forensics are going to come back and show. This is a case -- a classic case, as we've seen in a lot of these high profile cases, where the evidence is going to be she didn't act right, that the didn't act right evidence is some of the most powerful evidence that a prosecutor has and the hardest stuff to defend against.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Right.
KING: Do you agree?
KOBILINSKY: Well, if she didn't act right, that doesn't make her a killer. And I tell you, there was a very weak case. The finding of a body does add this new element and the case for the defense is different now than it was before. I think they dropped that death penalty charge -- penalty, because the case was relatively weak.
KING: Stacey, before we break, are they going to need motive?
HONOWITZ: I mean, it's always nice to have motive, but sometimes you just don't. In this case, of course, everyone speculates and says she's out partying, dancing and having a grand old time. Obviously, she did not want to have this child. This child really cramped her style. And I think that would be the motive that they would have to go on, based on what we've seen so far. We, of course, don't know everything. But what's been, you know, transmitted throughout the media...
HONOWITZ: ...has been that she really was an uncaring mother.
KING: We'll be back in 60 seconds with another case -- one finally closed after 27 years.
KING: We'll have more on the Caylee Anthony in a little while.
Twenty-seven years ago, a little boy named Adam Walsh disappeared in Hollywood, Florida while his mother was shopping. And two weeks later, his severed head was found in a canal 120 miles away. That horrific crime was officially solved today. The case closed by police, who say now that a dead drifter named Ottis Toole killed Adam.
John Walsh became a crime victims' advocate as a result of that tragedy. His ordeal never ended.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN WALSH, HOST, "AMERICA'S MOST WANTED":
For 27 years, we've been asking who could take a 6-year-old boy and murder him and decapitate him?
We needed to know. We needed to know. And today, we know.
The not knowing has been a torture, but that journey is over and a lot of horrible memories in this police department looking for that little boy. And now I think it's -- it's only fitting that it ends here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Ashley, you worked with John Walsh.
Your reaction since wasn't this killer known a long time ago?
BANFIELD: Well, he confessed. You know, he confessed two years after the crime to having abducted Adam from a mall and taken him to a remote location and confessed to the decapitation, as well. But then he recanted. And so he'd been sitting in prison up until the time he died. And back in 1994, they actually wanted to test the blood-stained carpet out of his white Cadillac, but the carpet was missing and the Cadillac was missing. And that's the time they had the DNA technology to test whether that was actually Adam's blood.
BANFIELD: They couldn't do it. So it remained a mystery for a long time.
KING: I'm glad it's closed today for John's sake.
BANFIELD: Well, I'm not...
KING: And his wife.
BANFIELD: I have to say, Larry, I'm still a little perplexed, though, because I didn't really hear anything substantial that led the police to close this.
So I'm waiting for the -- the missing link.
KING: It was a new police officer, right, in charge?
BANFIELD: There had been various over the years...
BANFIELD: ...but they never did find that evidence.
KING: All right. We'll be back -- thanks, Ashley.
Hang right there.
We'll be back right after this.
KING: David Theall, I understand you have a blog on this subject?
DAVID THEALL, LARRY KING LIVE PRODUCER: Larry, this topic really gets people talking on your blog, the Casey Anthony case. And it was on this case that we asked our question of the day today on your blog -- should Casey Anthony's defense team be allowed to conduct a second autopsy with their own forensic expert?
Tony chimed in on your blog. And he said: "No." He went further, Larry. He said: "Please, let's not let this be turned into more of a circus."
Juanita also agrees with Tony. She says: "No, a second autopsy won't be admissible in court and only desecrates the poor little girl, whoever she is" -- referring, of course, to the remains that were found last week.
Now, we also heard from Elle, Larry, who thinks that a second autopsy could be done if the family condones it. But, she says: "In no way should those results be admissible in court -- in a court of law."
And we also got a comment tonight that is sure to warm the heart of Mark Geragos. Bill appeared on your blog and he said: "The defense team wouldn't be worth much if they didn't try to get a second autopsy or anything else to help defend their client."
We will, of course, continue this conversation throughout the evening on your blog -- CNN.com/larryking. Look for the live blog link, look for our question of the day and join the conversation.
KING: Thanks, David.
Mark, do you wonder why so many people appeared so fascinated with this case?
GERAGOS: No, not really. I mean, it seems, in the last couple of years, that pretty white women or missing children seem to be kind of fodder for what I call the axis of evil for a criminal defendant, which is cable...
GERAGOS: ...cable TV, the tabloid magazines and the morning shows. So it seems to be a staple and people have always been, throughout history -- the United States history has always been fascinated by crime. And so it seems to make a lot of sense, actually. And it drives ratings. And, obviously, people are fascinated by it.
And when you combine something like this, where you get forensics and this inexplicable -- seemingly inexplicable behavior by the mother and the grandmother and the grandfather involved and them making the phone call, it has all the earmarks of something that's fascinating.
KING: Dr. Kobilinsky, do you think we will get all the answers?
KOBILINSKY: That's a very tough question. I think we'll get sufficient answers so that a jury can come to a reasonable conclusion. There may be questions that remain unanswered. I think time will tell. And the defense is entitled to its opportunity to examine evidence and come to their own conclusions.
KING: Stacey, is this a tough prosecution, do you think? HONOWITZ: No. I mean, I don't want to sit here and say it's a locked case. But I think there is so much circumstantial evidence -- we don't even know what the body is going to say yet. But there's so much circumstantial evidence that I don't think the prosecution is going to have a difficult time proving first degree felony murder. It's not premeditation, it's felony murder.
But, again, we're going to have to wait and see what pans out with the forensics. They indicted her. Now, indictment is certainly different than, as we know, going to trial and proving it beyond a reasonable doubt. And ask some people -- you asked the question, will we ever know the answers?
You don't have to prove it beyond all doubt.
HONOWITZ: No one is going to know 100 percent what happened, because we're not witnesses to it. We need to prove it beyond a reasonable doubt. And I don't think they'll have a problem doing it.
KING: But, Ashley, are you not puzzled by, if it's the mother, the motive?
BANFIELD: Well, I think that's why this has become such a mystery nationwide. Nobody could possibly understand how anyone could do this to such a sweet, angelic little child that you're seeing on your screen right now.
But I'll tell you this, Larry, jurors do not need all the answers. I've seen convictions -- you and I both covered the story of Cynthia Summer. She was convicted essentially because she had conduct unbecoming a widow -- a little bit like Casey Anthony's unbecoming conduct of a mother who's lost a child.
Jurors don't necessarily care about all the missing links. They really care about behavior, oftentimes.
KING: Mark, what would you advise, if you could, the defense?
GERAGOS: Well, I think the defense is doing what they have to do. And, you know, one of the reasons you saw on your blog that you don't let this go to a majority vote is that the defense wouldn't be able to do anything based on the majority.
They've got to get in there and they've got to do what they've done, which is hire forensics people conduct a parallel investigation, try to get -- to talk to their client and have -- understand exactly what was happening with the client and marshal the evidence as best they can.
Obviously, if it comes to a certain point, then they go and talk with the prosecutor. And if there's -- if they believe, at a certain point, that they have to try the case, then they prepare the case as if they're going to go to trial. But the fact is that any defense lawyer put in this position has got a heck of an uphill battle, if only for the fact that the public has already presumed this woman to be guilty.
KING: Stacey, I gather you know the prosecutor.
Are they very well -- are they efficient?
HONOWITZ: Larry, I'm down in Fort Lauderdale and they're in Orlando. I don't know them. But I would assume that the office put their top people on this case, knowing, of course, that it was going to be out in public and the media -- you know, garner so much media attention.
You know, and that's a hard question to ask. You never ask another lawyer how do you think another lawyer is going to be.
KING: I got you.
HONOWITZ: So I'm going to assume that these lawyers are excellent and top of their game.
KING: OK. We'll assume it.
And Dr. Kobilinsky, one other thing.
Is there a key piece of forensics that you're looking for?
KOBILINSKY: Well, I think the body was the key. And the body may have a lot of information that we haven't heard about yet. But we should hear about that pretty soon.
KING: Thank you all very much for an enlightening session.
We'll stay on top of this.
Bill Ford is here late -- next, rather. He's here on the fate of the auto company that bears his famous family's name.
Stay with us.
KING: A great pleasure to welcome to LARRY KING LIVE, Bill Ford, executive chairman of the Ford Motor Company. He is the great grandson of Henry Ford and he joins us exclusively tonight. He's at the Ford Product Development Center in Dearborn, Michigan. He's been with the company 30 years.
Is this hard, with that famous Ford company, to be in a position like this, Bill?
BILL FORD, EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN, FORD MOTOR COMPANY: Well, it's no fun to watch our whole industry go through what it is. But we're in a slightly different position than our competitors in that we're -- we're not asking for any federal money. And we're trying to pull ourselves up by our boot straps and make it on our own.
KING: So what -- you want money, but what, in escrow?
What do you want?
FORD: Well, we were -- we're not asking for anything in this round. G.M. and Chrysler have, as you know, have gone to the government and asked for bridge loans. We're not doing that.
Longer-term, if there is a larger auto plan, what we've said is we don't want to take any federal money, but we would like a line of credit in case the economy completely implodes.
But our plan is not to take any -- any federal money.
KING: All right. Explain how the line in credit -- line of credit would work.
Like a bank?
FORD: Well, basically, yes. I mean it's -- we would only draw on it if needed, but we hope we never need it.
KING: Didn't Chrysler do that some years ago.?
FORD: Well, Chrysler actually got -- you know, you'll remember, during the Iacocca days, they actually did go through...
FORD: They actually did take federal money.
KING: Oh, they did?
FORD: Yes, they did.
KING: All right. Here's what President Bush told CNN's Candy Crowley in an interview today regarding all of this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEORGE BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I feel a sense of obligation to my successor to make sure there's not a -- you know, a huge economic crisis. Look, we're in a crisis now. I mean this is -- we're in a huge recession. But I don't want to make it even worse. And, but, on the other hand, I'm mindful of not putting good money after bad. So we're working through some options.
CANDY CROWLEY, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: So it sounds like you need some assurances from the auto industry to give them some sort of assistance? BUSH: Well, we're just -- right. We're just working on options. What you don't want to do is spend a lot of taxpayers' money and then have the same old stuff happen again and again and again.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Bill, what can you say to him?
FORD: Well, I'm encouraged that he's thinking of acting, because if he doesn't, I think Chrysler and GM are going to be in a very, very tough spot. Really, I think that would be detrimental to our entire country. I think the economy, as he points out, is already in a rough spot. And I think if anything were to happen to one of our major competitors, it would really plunge this country into a place that we really don't want to be.
KING: How much danger, frankly, are you in? Can you give us the picture without being too technical?
FORD: Actually, Ford, we were profitable in the first quarter. Our plan is working. Our market share is picking up. I believe we're headed exactly where the country wants us to go. We're headed down a green path. We want to be the fuel economy leader and, frankly, in many segments already are. And we're technology and global. So our plan is working.
As I say, our plan is really not predicated on taking any federal money at all. We're working like mad to make this work in a really tough economy.
KING: Why do you need the line of credit?
FORD: We're saying we don't need it now, but we're saying, if the global economy does not pick up, you know, it would be, basically, a line of credit that we could draw upon. Larry, it's interesting because this slowdown now is happening in Europe, Asia and South America. And governments around the world are lining up to support their auto industries. So this is not just playing out in the U.S. This is playing out everywhere.
KING: What was the key turning point for you that sent this downward?
FORD: As I said, we made money in the first quarter, and we were well on our way. But it was a combination of two things. One was the spike in commodity prices, principally oil, and then most convincingly the credit shock that took place. Basically, as you know,credit stopped flowing in this country. Our customers couldn't get credit when they came in to buy cars. Banks were not lending. So that really chilled the entire industry down.
KING: Would it frankly benefit you if GM and Chrysler went under?
FORD: No, because the dislocation to the supply base that we all rely upon would be massive. Our suppliers are not in terrific shape. By the way, those same suppliers also supply the Japanese and European transplants as well. It wouldn't just be us affected. It would be all of the people who make -- all of the companies who make vehicles in the U.S. So I think that it would be a massive dislocation were one of those companies to get in real trouble.
KING: What about those in the Senate who say take the bankruptcy option?
FORD: Well, I think you've seen the data. Everything that we see suggests that customers simply don't want to buy from a company in that condition. I think that it could make matters worse. And so I know Rick Wagoner has said and Bob Nardelli has said it's the last thing that they want to do, is to consider that.
KING: How much do you self-blame in any of this, Bill? Do you look at yourself or the other heads of the other two, and say, you know, where did I go wrong?
FORD: Obviously there's a lot of room for second-guessing. And I think, when I look back, we probably, with oil low, the price of gasoline low in this country, we probably stayed too long with the truck and SUV business model. When I look at what we did wrong, that's probably what we did wrong. Because it's interesting, as gasoline was low here, it was taxed and much higher in other parts of the world, particularly Europe, but also in Asia. And as a result, we made small cars in Asia and in Europe and in South America and we made money doing so. Now we're bringing those vehicles here to the U.S.
So what's interesting is, while we stuck with that business model here, because of the price of gasoline, we were pursuing a very different strategy in Europe and South America and Asia, and we were growing and profitable. We're bringing those vehicles here now.
KING: I keep forgetting how global you are. We'll be right back. Bill Ford will take some of your calls. Get questions ready. You're watching LARRY KING LIVE.
KING: We're back with Bill Ford. What do you make of the idea of a Car Czar to oversee all of this?
FORD: I think it's probably a good idea, but I sure hope it's somebody who knows our industry, because it's a pretty complex industry. You know, I think it's fine.
KING: He is up there in age, but some mentioned Lee Iacocca. Would he satisfy you?
FORD: I love Lee Iacocca. I think he's a great guy. He's a great car guy. He would be terrific.
KING: He's a great guy, at that. Let's take a call for Bill Ford. Richmond, Virginia, hello.
CALLER: My question for the gentleman is: I know that the economy is bad, but why should the American government help support bailing out a failing car industry that really relaxed themselves in thinking that the consumer wanted their dated products. Their products remained dated for many years.
KING: Is that a good point, Bill, that your products were behind the times and now you want a bailout through your fault?
FORD: Actually, Larry, we're not asking for a bailout. Our competitors are.
KING: We should distinguish between you and the other two.
FORD: So we're not. But I will say this, if I can speak for Ford, we're at the very top of the heap in quality. We're as good as Toyota. We're as good as Honda. That's not us saying it. That's third parties. We have more five-star crash ratings than any other manufacturer. We are headed for leadership in fuel economy in every segment that we compete in. So I really reject the notion that our products aren't modern. I think they're extremely modern, and they're modern in a way that our customers are demanding them to be modern.
But to the larger question, I do think that industry is really important in this country. We used to always celebrate the fact that we had strong industry. If I look at countries where they let their industry go, they also have lost their status as a world power.
KING: What about the UAW in all of this?
FORD: Well, the UAW obviously has been our partner through all of this. Have they made mistakes and have we made mistakes? Of course. The UAW has come a long way. I think their leader, Ron Gettelfinger, is an excellent leader and he really understands our business. In this last contract, he gave up a lot. He's also indicated they're willing to come to the table to do more. And so for anybody to blame the UAW as the sole reason for this is frankly wrong.
One other thing is, when I look at the people who work in our plants, I don't think of them as UAW. I think of them as Ford employees, Ford employees who take tremendous pride in building quality and safety into our products. If you ask someone in our plant, where do they work, they say I work at Ford. To me, everybody who works in our plant is part of our extended family.
KING: Do you resent or are you angry about foreign manufacturers in places like Alabama and Kentucky, in which their employees make much less. They have no union and their senators vote against any type of help to you?
FORD: We could probably do a whole show on the inequities of trade and currency and all of that. But that's the world that we live in. I'm not really concerned so much about what other manufacturers are doing. My sole focus is to continue Ford on the path that we're on, which is, I believe, a winning path. This is much more for me than a job. It's a passion. And it's a passion that my whole family shares. We've been through the Great Depression, World War II, recession in the early '80s, the early '90s. We do it not for a financial investment. If that were the case, we would have been long gone. We do it because it matters to us. We want to make people's lives better, whether it's police cars or ambulances or the most five-star crash ratings. That's what gets our family up in the morning. Our name is on the product. That counts for something.
KING: When we come back, we'll ask Bill Ford about Barack Obama. Bill Ford will stick around. So do you. Back in 60 seconds.
KING: We're back with Bill Ford, executive chairman of Ford Motor Company. The caller is from Omaha, Nebraska. Hello.
CALLER: Hi there. Ex-Ford dealer, listened to the Congressional hearings, and was very disillusioned when they stated that Ford Motor Credit was there to help local ford dealers. We're a victim of Ford Motor Company, went and spoke with your president in Detroit, Steve Lyons. Ford allowed an unlevel playing field and has continued in Omaha, Nebraska, Blair, Nebraska, rebates piled onto one of the major Ford dealers and put the rest of us out of business. We've all gone bankrupt. I find it amazing that bridge loans are being asked for and the rest of us are in bankruptcy, have gone bankrupt. We've lost everything we put out of ourselves, 150 employees unemployed now thanks to Ford Motor Company.
KING: Do you have a specific question or just want him to respond to the complaint?
CALLER: I want to know, first of all, what -- we were told by your president of Ford Motor Company that what we were disillusioned that what we were experiencing really wasn't happening. How do you justify the Ford Motor Credit claiming it's helping people, and you've put us all out of business in Omaha, Nebraska?
FORD: First of all, I'm really sorry that she went through that. That makes me really sad, because our dealers are our partners and do we always get it right? No, of course we don't. And I don't know the specific case to which she's referring.
KING: Can you look into that, Ford Motor Credit in Omaha?
FORD: Of course I will. Yes.
KING: It's hard to do it on the phone, but perhaps you could look into it. A couple other things. Is leasing still a big part of your business?
FORD: In this environment, leasing is tougher to do. Yes, it is. We are still leasing. But it's not as big a part of our business as it used to be because of the credit situation.
KING: What kind of car do you drive?
FORD: Well, that's one of the great things about this business. I get to drive all kinds of stuff. I usually drive whatever is new of ours. Actually, frankly, I drive some of our competitor vehicles, but my kids get mad when I bring home something that doesn't have a blue oval on it.
KING: I see you advertised everywhere. How well is that new Lincoln doing, the smaller one?
FORD: It's doing really, really well. It got off to a great start and it's continued to do exceptionally well. It's a great vehicle.
KING: Bill, thank you very much for joining us. We appreciate it.
FORD: Larry, thank you for having me.
KING: Bill Ford, the executive chairman of the Ford Motor Company, the great grandson of Henry Ford, coming to us from the Ford Product Development Center in Dearborn, Michigan.
And Sarah Jessica Parker is next. She knows Caroline Kennedy, who could be New York's next senator. We'll ask her about that and her good work for kids around the world. Look at that loveliness. We'll be right back.
KING: Our friend Sarah Jessica Parker joins us from New York, the actress best known for her role as Kerry Bradshaw on "Sex and The City." She is also UNICEF's goodwill ambassador, succeeding such people as Danny Kay in that role. We'll get to UNICEF in a moment. First, let's get to what everyone has been talking about, the Caroline Kennedy throwing her hat in the ring to be chosen senator. What do you make of it?
SARAH JESSICA PARKER, ACTRESS: Well, I don't know her terribly well. I have had the privilege of working with her over the last couple of years. She's been incredibly entrenched in raising money for the New York City Fund for Public Schools. She has devoted enormous amounts of time, along with obviously our great chancellor here, Joe Klein. I know that she's an incredibly impressive woman. She's bright. Obviously, she's been around a lot of great minds, political minds for a number of years.
But I think that she's not a very public person. If she feels that she can serve the needs of New York state, and serve it well as a junior senator from our state, and represent the state well in Washington, I believe that she is incredibly equipped to do so.
KING: Do you think --
PARKER: Pardon me?
KING: Do you think the governor is kind of inclined to pick her?
PARKER: I don't know what the governor is thinking. I don't know who else is on a short list. I have a lot of respect for the process. I'm sure that Ms Kennedy does as well. And I'm sure he'll pick somebody he feels will really serve the state, upstate, down state, city. Obviously, she has lived here for a lot of years. She loves this city and she is probably acutely aware of what the city needs at this time and what upstate needs as well.
KING: So you think she is certainly qualified.
PARKER: I have no doubt about her qualifications. And like I said, I really don't think that she is the type of person who would do something if she didn't think she could do it extremely well. This is a voluntary choice of hers to pursue this seat.
KING: Sarah Jessica, why is UNICEF so important to you? How did you get involved?
PARKER: Well, I started as a very young child, trick or treating for UNICEF. Our family's holiday cards came only from UNICEF. My parents were enormous supporters of the organization. And I spent a lot of years doing it as a child. And later in life, they asked me to join in an official capacity. It was an enormous honor. And for a lot of reasons. Of course, it's sentimental, because of my familial ties. But no organization has saved more children's lives than UNICEF. You know, every day, 25,000 children under the age of five die of preventable diseases. It's UNICEF's great desire to meet those needs of all of those children in 150 developing countries.
You know, they serve the basic, basic needs. And they do it like nobody else in the world. And --
KING: You know --
KING: You step in to some great shoes. I happen to personally know -- I don't mean to toot my own horn, but I knew personally Danny Kay and Audrey Hepburn. Danny was the first UNICEF ambassador. I'm sure you're aware of the shoes you're filling.
PARKER: I'm extremely aware. I'm daunted by the great burden and challenge. But it's an organization, like I said earlier, that simply does what nobody else does. They have these incredible people on the field right now in places that are dangerous and war-torn environment, in crisis situations. It's often a risk to their own lives. But they understand that UNICEF is there to provide safety, to provide transformative things to change young people's lives. And I -- I really, really believe it, especially in these economic times, when, of course, non-profit organizations are very concerned with the economic environment, and how that impacts charitable giving, that it's -- it's incumbent upon me to try to encourage everybody, whether it's a dollar, whether it's five dollars. Of course, we welcome larger donations. But UNICEF can do things with small amounts of money that nobody else does. And it means the world to me to have an opportunity tonight to come on your show that reaches so many to express my deep desire that we all in these times find something meaningful to do, something substantive. And I think it changes people to get involved in this organization.
KING: And there you see its website, www.UNICEFUSA.org. And you can dial 1-800-4-UNICEF.
PARKER: And there's enormous things -- if they go to the website, it will be inspiring. It's innovative. We have so many things we can do with small and large amounts of money. That money goes right to the field. It serves these children. And we thank everybody so much for taking the time just to visit the website. And I think they'll really be inspired to change a small person's life.
KING: It's a great organization. WWW.UNICEFUSA.org or call them at 1-800-4-UNICEF. And we'll be right back with the lovely Sarah Jessica after this.
KING: We're back with Sarah Jessica Parker, the goodwill ambassador for UNICEF. The drive is on. We hope you help. A couple of other things, I know Jennifer Hudson appeared with you in "Sex In The City." Have you been in touch with her since that tragedy?
PARKER: Yes, I have been in touch with her, just wanting her to know that any little or big thing I can do -- I think those of us who love her want to be there for her, to the degree that it's appropriate. I don't know her very well, so it's a delicate situation. You don't want to intrude on a person. But I just keep reminding her that I'm here, whatever that might mean to her. And it's an unthinkable situation, really. Unthinkable.
KING: How is she doing?
PARKER: You know, I think that -- I mean, the little bit that I would share is just that I think she's surviving. I don't know how a person navigates anything like this. And I think, you know, she has a lot of people around her who love her, and want the best for her. And I think nobody is prepared for something like this. But she is incredibly strong. She is a woman of faith. And I think she is figuring out. I can't imagine what it must be like for her.
KING: Going to do another "Sex In The City."
PARKER: It's an on-going conversation. It's a delightful and on-going conversation.
KING: Is there any negative? Is somebody saying let's not?
PARKER: No. I think, as always, my great desire and Michael Patrick's great desire is that we tell a great story. You know, we are indebted to this gang of 10 million that are -- you know, were devoted to us. And we feel that it's really our job to serve up a really good story, something that is worthwhile, people leaving their home, spending their hard-earned money to come see us. And as the producer and somebody who cares a lot about the history of the show and the experience of the movie, you know, I want to make sure we do it right. So that's a long process. And I never am cavalier about it.
KING: What are the plans of Matthew and you and little James Wilke Broaddrick for Christmas?
PARKER: We are staying home in New York City. We have made Santa extremely aware of where we will be on Christmas morning and Christmas Eve. James Wilke really wanted to be home in New York. He is hoping for a white Christmas. And I really relish this time that we're going to have. I'm really excited and looking forward to the holidays, being with my family. I have a large, extended family. Matthew has a large and extended family. So it's a great time of year for anybody who celebrates any holiday this time of year. And I wish great tidings to all of your viewers and encourage them to go to our website, you know, www.UNICEF.org -- UNICEFUSA.org or call our number, which is 1-800-4-UNICEF.
And yes, that's what I'm thinking about this holiday season is those children.
KING: You're a special girl. Thanks, Sarah. Be well.
PARKER: Thank you so much, Larry. And great, great holidays to everyone. Thanks for having me. I appreciate it so much.
KING: Sarah Jessica Parker. She can talk to us anytime, anywhere. You can go to CNN.com/LarryKing and have your say. We have lots of other great features on our webpage, ring tones, podcasts, photo galleries and a new Kings Things. It's my two cents. Plus, an exclusive commentary from Sarah Jessica Parker. That means you won't see it anywhere else.
Vice President Elect Joe Biden is here Monday night, a prime time exclusive. Tomorrow night, Alec Baldwin. Now, Anderson Cooper and "AC 360." Anderson?