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QUEST MEANS BUSINESS
Dow Heads Closer to 20,000; Exxon Boss Faces Fight Over Russia Ties; David Beckham Battles for Vulnerable Kids; Senate Majority Leader Backs Tillerson for Secretary of State;
Aired December 13, 2016 - 16:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[16:00:00] MAGGIE LAKE, CNN ANCHOR: A lot to talk about, one more rally would do it. The Dow is closer to 20,000 than it's ever been before. It's
Tuesday, December 13. Tonight, the milestone is in sight. The Dow surges to yet another all-time closing high.
Exxon Mobil's CEO is headed for a battle on Capitol Hill after being tapped for Secretary of State. And from the football field to fighting child
poverty David Beckham tells me about his new fund for children.
I'm Maggie Lake, this is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.
Good evening, we are getting ever closer to one of the biggest market milestones in American history. After a solid start, the Dow suddenly
leapt higher in the afternoon surging toward that 20,000 level. The Dow got as far as 19,953, that's less than 50 points shy of 20,000. Paul La
Monica is at the New York Stock Exchange. He has been watching all of the action all day long, and Paul, I don't know, what were people saying down
there? Did it feel like we were getting close or this is within grasp within the next day or so?
PAUL R. LA MONICA, CNNMONEY CORRESPONDENT: I think so. I mean, no one really seems to feel that there is any end at least for the foreseeable
future, until the end of the year, for this Trump fueled rally. And we've got the fed tomorrow. Expected to raise interest rates, but that in and of
itself isn't going to shock the market either. What I found really interesting today, Maggie, tech stocks joining the party, Apple, Microsoft,
Cisco, Intel. They were among the bigger winners in the Dow today, not your traditional old economy infrastructure stocks that have been really
surging on the hope of Trump's stimulus.
LAKE: Now maybe that's ahead of that big meeting that's happening tomorrow. Paul, were going to catch up with you a little bit later in the
show, thank you so much.
Now, turning to the presidential transition. The wait is over. Donald Trump's most highly anticipated pick is official. Rex Tillerson, the CEO
of Exxon Mobil is the President-elect's choice to serve as Secretary of State. Trump's team says Tillerson's business experience will help him
negotiate deals on America's behalf, but he may face a difficult confirmation in the Senate. Trump is reportedly close to making another
appointment. Sources inside the transition say he has chosen former Texas governor, Rick Perry to serve as secretary of energy. Phil Mattingly is
following the latest developments. He has our report.
PHIL MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Today, President-elect Trump sticking to his pledge to pick unorthodox business minded cabinet
secretaries. Even if it sets up a bipartisan confirmation confrontation for his choice to be top diplomat.
MIKE PENCE, U.S. VICE PRESIDENT - ELECT: we just couldn't be more grateful that someone of Rex Tillerson's proven leadership and accomplishments has
been willing to step forward to serve our nation.
MATTINGLY: Rex Tillerson, CEO of oil giant Exxon Mobil, now tapped to be Trump Secretary of State. A man with no government experience, but decades
of deal making and international business ties. Those ties include extensive relations with Russia, and most notably Vladimir Putin. Ties
Trump and his team see as a net positive.
JASON MILLER, TRUMP COMMUNICATIONS DIRECTOR: what we're going to see with Tillerson is someone who's been a business leader on the world stage.
Rex Tillerson has actually stood up and said no to Vladimir Putin.
MATTINGLY: The pick coming amid allegations from the intelligence community that Russia was involved in meddling in the election to Trump's
advantage. It's an allegation that the Trump team rejects. Some GOP senators quickly firing out statements raising concerns, and raising the
possibility of Tillerson's nomination could be an uphill climb.
Marco Rubio saying, "I have serious concerns about his nomination." Tillerson however, getting an immediate boost from former cabinet
secretaries and GOP foreign-policy standard-bearers, Condoleezza Rice and Robert Gates. Both did work for Tillerson's firm, and behind-the-scenes
sources tells CNN, both recommended and endorsed Tillerson to Trump. Rice, calling him an "excellent choice." Gates touting his, "vast knowledge,
experience, and success in dealing with foreign leaders."
This coming as sources tells CNN, Trump will select Rick Perry as his energy secretary. The former long serving governor of oil-rich Texas. It
elevates a man who once proposed eliminating the department all together. And trying to lay out that specifically, had this epic oops moment.
RICK PERRY, FORMER GOVERNOR OF TEXAS: The third one, I can't, sorry. Oops.
MATTINGLY: Trump also delaying his own announcement about his plans to separate himself from his business empire. Aids say Trump's focus has been
on personnel and cabinet choices, and the final plan simply wasn't ready. But Trump still able to find time to meet with someone decidedly not in
contention for a cabinet post today. Hip-hop star, Kanye West.
[16:05:00] KANYE WEST, HIP-HOP STAR: I just wanted to take a picture right now.
LAKE: Trump is a businessman with investments around the world, but his business empire is tiny compared to the one controlled by his nominee for
Secretary of State. Exxon is the world's biggest energy company with a global reach to match. Tillerson has closed deals across Europe, Asia and
the Middle East. It's Tillerson's experience in one country in particular though that's under scrutiny. Claire Sebastian has been looking into
Tillerson's ties to Russia, and she joins me now.
Claire, this is presumably why Trump tapped him. He said it himself. He calls him a master. And he thinks he is somebody that can do deals with
Putin. Any has in fact. Hasn't he?
CLAIRE SEBASTIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, he has, Maggie. You only have to look at this map to understand exactly what he has done. This is Exxon
Mobil's footprint in Russia. These are the offices. These black dots over there. They have offices in six cities. And the red dots are their oil
and gas assets across the country. From Sakhalin in the Far East, all the way over to the Black Sea. And Rex Tillerson himself, has been responsible
for spearheading, for negotiating many of these deals. It was back in the late 90s when he was the head of Exxon's operations in Russia that he
managed to negotiate this deal, the Sakhalin deal, which is still producing today. A deal that was so complicated in fact, Maggie, that the last of
the three oilfields that it was developing only came online at the beginning of last year. But that was really just a warm-up for this major
joint venture that it signed in 2011 with RusNet. That is all of these other three other areas that you see on the map. The Arctic, Western
Siberia and the Black Sea, all very complicated projects and Exxon really did beat out other Western rivals --
LAKE: I mean, this is not a country -- it's not easy to do business in Russia. And you heard in the piece that they believe Tillerson is somebody
who can say no to Putin.
SEBASTIAN: Well, he said actually in an interview with a Russian newspaper back in 2005 that it was his straight talking with Russia that really got
him where he was that really earned his trust. And it's telling, Maggie, that the day after Exxon signed a deal with RusNet over the Arctic, the
offices of TNK-BP were raided in Russia. That was another company that very much wanted to exploit Russia's Arctic resources. But the Arctic
project was really a -- had a major roadblock in 2014. They were just started drilling up here and there was a major discovery was announced.
And Exxon had to pack up and walk away, because of U.S. sanctions.
LAKE: And this is what has people worried. Isn't it? Will Tillerson be influenced by the fact that there are all of these multi million dollars'
worth of oil and business ties that he helped initiate, that are hung up by sanctions. He's on record in the past saying, he was in favor of getting
rid of them.
SEBASTIAN: Right, he's been very vocal about that. And this is what stopped. This has impacted all 10 of Exxon's joint ventures with RusNet in
the country. They have said where they head of Exxon's joint operations in Russia has said to writers that he would be willing to go back into the
Arctic if sanctions are lifted. The bottom line, Maggie, they haven't sold out of these joint ventures. They've simply halted production. Halted
operations so they could go back in. And they may be betting on that. And this is something that Tillerson can now potentially influence.
LAKE: And presumably this is going to come up at the hearings. Because it is this conflict of interest that has so many worried in Congress.
SEBASTIAN: Right, this map is a reason why many are celebrating his ability to do deals, but it's also a reason why many are worried. Exxon
has so much at stake in Russia. And Rex Tillerson has never worked anywhere else.
LAKE: Now Claire, I know that you know the region extensively. You speak the language. You've been looking at the papers today. Presumably Russia
has to be thrilled about this.
SEBASTIAN: There's a lot of emphasis today, Maggie, it's quite interesting some of the headlines, on the fact that he has this order of friendship,
which was given to him by Vladimir Putin. That's the highest honor that a foreign citizen can really get in Russia. And that was given to him in
2013, even before all of the sanctions hit in any of that. And he really is very well respected there. As you say, in a country where it is
extremely difficult for foreign companies to gain a foothold and to make, you know, as many deals, as many successful deals as Tillerson did.
LAKE: So, he's got a honeymoon period, but given what you were talking about, he must know the sort of perils and how difficult it's going to be
to actually operate in that environment as well. Let's not forget, you know, we're talking about this before he actually takes office. The
reality presumably, is going to be that is going to be very difficult. And Putin is a very unpredictable character just like his boss.
SEBASTIAN: Right, well, Tillerson has met him many times. They were at the 2011 signing of the deal with RusNet.
LAKE: You see these warm smiling pictures of the two of them together.
SEBASTIAN: Right, exactly. But I think, you know, we're not talking close friendship. Sitting around for dinner together. This is a working
business relationship. And I think that's part of what has attracted Mr. Trump to Tillerson. That he has managed to not only to do these deals, to
create these long-lasting relationships in Russia, but also to assert his authority and make sure that he's not walked over by the Russians.
[16:10:00] He's still dominate, of course, their own oil and gas sector. He still has disagreements in Russia. There is disagreement with gas
problems over Sakhalin, about exporting gas to Asia. So, not everything is perfect for RusNet -- for Exxon Mobil rather -- in Russia. And I think
that something that Tillerson is acutely aware of.
LAKE: And it's something that he's going to explain in detail no doubt, when those confirmation hearings take place. Claire, thank you so much.
Now, Rudy Giuliani has been a staunch defender of Donald Trump as we know. He was on Trump shortlist to be Secretary of State. Speaking with CNN
earlier, the former mayor of New York, downplayed Tillerson's links with the Russian government.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RUDY GIULIANI, FORMER NEW YORK CITY MAYOR: He's been head of one of the largest companies in the world. He has relationships all over the world.
It wouldn't be unusual for a person in the energy business to have a relationship with Russia. Obviously, that has to be looked at. I don't
know that he's really a friend of Putin's. I don't know Mr. Tillerson. I do know he received an award from the Russian government, but so did
astronauts and other notable Americans. So, I think it's something you have to really take a look at. He certainly has the background and
experience to understand the world. And if you're going to get somebody in that position, you're probably going to get a very successful person.
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR: So, you're OK, with the choice?
GIULIANI: I'm OK with the choice. I think Donald Trump has selected somebody who knows the world and could advise him on the world. If you
pick somebody like that somewhere, someplace they're going to have some issues that you're just going to have to deal with. I mean, whether it's
George Schultz, Henry Kissinger, or any of the great ones, they all had certain issues.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LAKE: Garry Kasparov is a Russian pro-democracy leader. You'll also know him, of course, as a former world chess grandmaster. Gary, thank you so
much for being with us. You've been listening to the discussion we had. Do you think Tillerson's business experience is going to give him a
different skill set that's going to allow him to have a different dialogue with Vladimir Putin?
GARRY KASPAROV, RUSSIAN PRO-DEMOCRACY LEADER: Well, absolutely a different dialogue with Vladimir Putin. Opposite to what America needs today.
Tillerson is CEO of Exxon. He will no longer be CEO of Exxon. But I can hardly imagine he will drop Exxon's interest. You just showed the map with
some kind of disagreements now between Exxon gas. So, how Tillerson will enter the negotiations. You know, sacrifice Exxon interest or it will be
held against him and the great country he is planning to represent as a diplomat. Also, let's not forget, a Tillerson nomination was announced by
Trump in the midst of a scandal of Russian interference in the U.S. elections.
And I'm appalled by comments from Rudy Giuliani and Newt Gingrich and others who are trying to pretend that, you know, it was not happening. I
don't know whether it was a decisive factor for Trump, probably not. But to deny the fact Russia, Vladimir Putin's Russia, did absolutely everything
they could to help Trump be elected. It's just, you know, it's insulting my intelligence. We can see what they did with WikiLeaks, which for years
I've been saying was a KGB fully arm. So, they were dumping all of these, you know, negative stories on Hillary Clinton. They made sure the story
about her emails was not going to die.
We learned from a CIA report that they also collected data, hacked GOP servers. And I'm sure they had a lot on Donald Trump. But they kept it
for the future use. And now it's hearing many Republicans today are now downplaying the reports from CIA and saying they made mistakes. Yes, they
made mistakes, but in this case, we have from, you know, in case of hacking. We have an opportunity. We have motive, and we have a canto.
Because at the same time we can hear the European countries, the heads of their intelligence community, lately, Germans and many others, blaming
Russia. Not China, not Iran, not a guy in a T-shirt in New Jersey cellar, it's squarely blaming Russia for interference in a political system.
LAKE: And the Trump administration has dismissed it. Congressional leaders have not and they are going to push for an investigation into it.
KASPAROV: But they absolutely must. Again, we don't know what we'll find out, but is very clear that Putin's propaganda machine has been working
tirelessly, spreading, you know, the fake news and using the spam bots supporting Trump. Both in English and in Russian.
LAKE: And new warfare of the weapons in the world we live in. Let me ask you, Garry, so, you bring up the point that they announce this in the
middle of this scandal. All of the noise surrounding Trump's comments about Putin have been very friendly. The appointment of Tillerson, Russia
must be believing at this point that is going to be looking at a much friendlier administration. If you were Tillerson -- you are a master of
game theory -- if you are Tillerson, what is your first move with Vladimir Putin?
KASPAROV: Look, you know, I hope he will never be nominated. He will only be approved by the Senate, so he will not make first move in this game.
Because right now we should concentrate on Donald Trump. The man who announced this nomination, because as you pointed out, throughout the
campaign Trump had numerous opportunities to sort of reject, you know, these accusations, to denounce Vladimir Putin.
[16:15:00] He never did it. So, we have on one side, Trump who praised Putin and who always denied these reports even as a candidate and
President-elect. And the other side we have Putin and Putin's propaganda machine praising Trump all the time. Putin's puppet Parliament had a
standing ovation when the results of the elections were announced. And today -- actually yesterday already in Russia, they celebrated the
announcement of the Tillerson nomination.
LAKE: Let me post to the theory that some supporters of Trump, or even some who are just looking at this trying to keep an open mind, say that
listen, a lot of this is strategy. That Donald Trump may not be as friendly toward Putin as he appears to be, but each trying to change the
dialogue, and frankly what's been happening for the last eight years isn't working. And it's time to try something else. Do you think a closer
relationship between Russia and the U.S. can somehow bear beneficial fruits or is it a danger to the world?
KASPAROV: As one of the harshest critics of Obama's foreign policy, and you know, you can hardly expect me trying to say anything nice about it.
The problem is that while Obama, has been in my views steadily destroying the credibility of U.S. presidents and the United States worldwide, Trump
is moving in the wrong direction. So, you have to restore its credibility and the first thing you must do is to rebuild your relations with
traditional American allies. It's very important to reassure NATO members. I'm sure the moment they heard about Tillerson nomination, they're freaking
out in Estonia, Lithuania, in Poland, in Latvia, and Eastern Europe and everywhere in the world. Because they see that Trump was preparing, maybe
it's a strategy as you said, but what they see from the sideline, so, Trump was preparing for may be a great bargain with Putin. Maybe he will be
ready to trade Crimea, the Ukrainians -- I'm sure they have fears for the future of their country. For their sovereignty. Because for Trump as we
could hear in his talking throughout the campaign and now the way he presents his, OK, framework of his foreign-policy. He doesn't care about
traditional alliances. And Putin expected him to be a winning counterpart to negotiate new deals that will ignore the traditional security of
LAKE: Yes, right now there is so many unknowns. It's hard to tell. But it certainly an environment we have to --
KASPAROV: if we start adding, you know, all this consequential evidences, you know, we have to say that in this case the benefit of the doubt goes to
LAKE: Garry, thank you so much for coming in.
KASPAROV: Thank you.
LAKE: Pleasure to see you as always.
Now, the Kremlin says it welcomes Tillerson's nomination, as Garry just mentioned. That may make it more difficult for the Secretary of State
nominee to actually make it through the Senate. Joining me now Manu Raju, is CNN's senior political reporter. Manu we've been having this
conversation. All of these concerns, first and foremost on the minds of members of Congress, but are they going to actually block the nomination?
MANU RAJU, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL REPORTER: That's an open question right now, Maggie. We really don't know, because a lot of the members themselves
don't know much about Mr. Tillerson. They don't know his views in particular about Russia. That is was causing the most concern among
Republican senators here. This is the first time we've seen Republicans senators balk at a potential Donald Trump cabinet pick. And the reason why
is because of his friendship with Vladimir Putin and his opposition to imposing Russian sanctions on Russia at the time when a lot of folks here
on Capitol Hill had been pushing for a very hard line on Russia.
So, Republicans are telling me is that they're saying, look, we need to hear more from Rex Tillerson about how he would approach Russia. And how
he would influence Donald Trump's position against this country. So, that is the key question going in. How he deals with that in a confirmation
hearings, will have to go a long way to determine whether or not he becomes the next Secretary of State.
LAKE: Manu, it's really interesting, you know, we've had a week where Trump has been in public spat with the CIA. He's been complaining about
ridiculous military spending on Twitter, not behind closed doors. And it seems to me that he floated that Tillerson as a trial balloon. Didn't make
it official until today. He had plenty of time to pull that back when he saw all of the pushback from Congressional Republicans, and the fact that
it would be a really tough hearing. And he went for it anyway. He seemed to be ready for that fight and willing to take it on. It's sort of taking
on Republican leadership as well.
RAJU: Yes, indeed. I would say that he shrewdly put that nomination forward today to change, and some ways to change the subject away from the
Russia hack and Russia investigation that was really starting to take shape and calls for new inquiries. So, now the focus is on his Secretary of
State nominee. And also, the fact that, yes, a lot of Republicans were concerned about it and tried to puncture that trial balloon, if you will,
when the trial balloon of Rex Tillerson came out.
[16:20:00] But what was very clear, Maggie, from talking to people, Republicans, that Donald Trump had a very deep comfort level with Rex
Tillerson. They both are businessmen. They both have a similar background, if you will. And he just felt like this was the right man for
the job. And it seems like he's willing to fight to get him confirmed. Even if it puts Republicans in a difficult spot, Maggie.
LAKE: That is spending your political capital early, that's for sure. Manu Raju, thanks so much.
RAJU: Thank you.
LAKE: It is another record breaking day in the markets. The Dow pushes ever closer to 20,000 as investors brace for an expected rate hike.
LAKE: The postelection rally just keeps on going. The Dow continues pushing toward 20,000 closing just shy of that milestone today. The S&P
500 and NASDAQ are also in record territory. Take a look at the Dow steady climb. Up more than 14 percent since the start of the year. That is
astonishing. The markets seem to have already priced in an expected rate hike from the Fed. Janet Yellen and her team announce the decision
tomorrow. We're going to be looking at language there. Paul La Monica joins us once again. Paul, 14 percent since the start of the year. I
mean, that is so unexpected and even on a day-to-day basis, you and I talked this morning at the opening and it was a rally, but we didn't expect
that we might actually be within reach of 20,000. And it sounds like it's getting broader this rally.
LA MONICA: -- into really participate as well. It is broadening out beyond the "old economy" infrastructure plays that have led the market
higher particularly since the election. To be sure though, Caterpillar is still well and above the best Dow stock of the year. It's up more than 40
percent. That is clearly proof that investors are betting on stimulus and infrastructure spending. But having Microsoft and Cisco and Apple starting
to rally as well shows that there might be an appetite for some of these tech stocks, particularly may be the more mature older tech stocks that
could actually benefit if there are able to bring all that cash they've got sitting overseas back to the U.S.
We know that one of Trump's tax plans is to lower the rate so that people could repatriate some of the tax they have Europe and other tax havens.
LAKE: I suppose they're going to want something if they let them do that though. We know they've all been summoned to Trump Tower tomorrow to have
discussions about what to do. And the focus is going to be on jobs.
LA MONICA: Right, I think the big question that a lot of people are wondering, is this going to be yet another Trump lecture or will this
actually be a strong substantive discussion where leaders of companies like Google and Facebook and Apple are able to show Donald Trump that they are
serious about adding job in the United States and not just other places around the world. But of course, Maggie, none of these tech companies will
be in the position that they're in right now if they focused entirely on the United States. And hopefully they will impress upon Trump that the
world is a big interconnected place and we need to have operations in places like Mexico, China, and Europe because there are customers there.
When you have, people buying iPhones in China that is eventually good news for Apple workers in the United States.
[16:25:00] LAKE: Yes, but Trump should know that better than anyone else. Being a multinational businessman himself who has operation elsewhere. We
do have the Fed coming, Paul. That rate hike priced in, but people are really going to be looking at the language, and there's going to be a lot
of focus on Trump's relationship with Janet Yellen and the Fed.
LA MONICA: Yes, definitely. I suspect that there will be reporters that will asked Janet Yellen exactly that during the press conference. How does
she intend to work with Donald Trump? Does she still feel that her job is save? I mean, I think everyone realizes that she will be up for re-
nomination if she so chooses in 2018. There is already speculation about whether or not she gets renewed by Trump or does Trump try and find another
But the irony here is that Trump criticized Yellen for keeping rates too low. Yellen and other Fed chairs have been adamantly saying that they
wanted Congress and the president to work together and have some fiscal stimulus. And they're both finally going to get what they want. So, this
might be an example of Yellen and Trump being allies, friend-enemies if you will. But they both have I think the same goal in mind. And it'll be
interesting to see how that relationship develops over the next year or so.
LAKE: Friend-enemies indeed. And Paul you set us up perfectly for our next piece. Thank you so much, Paul La Monica for us at the New York Stock
Now, as the Federal Reserve meets on interest rates, Donald Trump is preparing to take office with unprecedented sway over the central bank's
future. As Claire Sebastian explains, while there has been friction between presidents and Fed chairs before, Trump is signaling he may totally
rewrite the script.
SEBASTIAN (voice-over): One thing you can always rely on with Federal Reserve Chair, Janet Yellen, she sticks to the script.
JANET YELLEN, CHAIR, FEDERAL RESERVE: Have our cautious approach to adjusting monetary policy.
Only gradual increases in the federal funds rate.
SEBASTIAN: Now President-elect, Donald Trump may be about to rewrite that script.
DONALD TRUMP, U.S. PRESIDENT-ELECT: The Fed is doing political by keeping the interest rates at this level.
SEBASTIAN: His first new words, politics. Trump has accuse Yellen of keeping rates low to make Obama look good. She denies politics plays a
YELLEN: There is clear evidence of better outcomes in countries where central banks are not subject to short-term political pressures.
SEBASTIAN: Trump meanwhile has introduced another short-term political pressure, his economic plans.
DIANE SWONK, FOUNDER AND CEO, DS ECONOMICS: if you took his plans on both pro-growth policies and protectionist high tariff policies at their face
value, they would put the Federal Reserve in a very awkward position of raising rates fairly rapidly.
SEBASTIAN (on camera): Now awkwardness between presidents and Fed chairs over politics and interest rates is nothing new. They've all been through
it. In fact, in 2003 Alan Greenspan and George W. Bush publicly fell out over Bush's plan tax cuts. And yet Trump will have unprecedented influence
over another word, personnel. Two Fed board seats are already open and in 2018 both Janet Yellen and her deputy Stanley Fischer, reached the end of
their terms as chair and vice chair and they also leave the board. That's four out of seven board members and one third of the 12 members voting on
And Trump won't just influence who sits at the table, he may also be able to redefine their power.
SWONK: We've got many bills at of already moved into the Senate. One in particular, audit the Fed bill which would dramatically curb the
independence of the Federal Reserve's decisions on interest rate policy and leave them more open to the whims of political cycles instead of economic
SEBASTIAN (voice-over): Trump has said he'll support that bill that the Feds policies have artificially inflated the market.
TRUMP: We in a big fat ugly bubble.
SEBASTIAN: Politics, personnel, power, three ways the next president may rewrite this future of the Federal Reserve. Claire Sebastian, CNNMoney,
LAKE: More millionaires and billionaires are descending on Washington. Rex Tillerson becomes the latest high profile executive to go from the C
suite to the West Wing.
[16:30:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
LAKE: Hello, I'm Maggie Lake. Coming up on the next half hour of QUEST MEANS BUSINESS, football superstar, David Beckham, tells me how he's using
his tattoos to raise awareness about violence against children.
The U.S. Senate majority leader throws his support to Rex Tillerson. First, the headlines this hour.
After years of brutal fighting the Syrian government appears to have reestablished control over rebel held Aleppo. That's according to Russia's
ambassador to the UN. We are hearing the cease-fire deal allows fighters, their families and other civilians to evacuate. This is a crushing defeat
for the opposition. During emergency talks earlier at the UN Security Council, the U.S. ambassador took aim at the Assad regime and its allies.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SAMANTHA POWER, U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE U.N.: Are you truly incapable of shame? Is there literally nothing that can shame you? Is there no active
barbarism against civilians, no execution of a child that gets under your skin? That just creep you out a little bit? Is there nothing you would
not lie about or justify?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LAKE: U.S. President-elect Donald Trump's pick for Secretary of State may have a tough time in his Senate confirmation. Trump has tapped Exxon
mobiles CEO, Rex Tillerson to be America's top diplomat. Supporters said his vast global experience as a top qualification. But Exxon Mobil's ties
to Russia's oil industry and Tillerson's close relationship with Vladimir Putin are raising red flags.
A Republican U.S. senator says his committee will join two others to investigate allegations that Russia may have meddled in the U.S. election.
Senator Bob Corker is promising to systematically walk through the Russia issue. The CIA says Russian hackers tried to help Donald Trump get
elected. An allegation Trump dismisses.
More now on the situation in Aleppo. Russia says the Syrian government has control over the eastern part of the city. CNN's Fred Pleitgen, was
recently in Aleppo and joins is now from Beirut. And Fred, what do we know at this point?
FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It certainly seems as though, Maggie, the rebels are still in, at least a small enclave, there in
Eastern Aleppo. So, the Syrian government doesn't appear to have full control just yet. However, there is that agreement that appears to have
been hammered out. That will see an evacuation of the rebel fighters in that enclave and also a majority of the civilians in there as well. And
once that happens, once that is completed, the Syrian government will then indeed have full control over Aleppo. There will not be a rebel presence
Now the way all of this is going to go down is that there's going to be buses that are going to take these rebel fighters and also the civilians
via two separate routes to other locations in Syria. Some of it north of Aleppo, others west of Aleppo, and then the Syrian government forces after
that has been completed, they will then move in this deal, which was brokered between the Russians, the Turks also played an intermediary role,
but then of course, first and foremost, between the Syrian government and the opposition forces who are inside that small enclave in Aleppo.
[16:35:00] They hammered all of this out. And of course, it came under a lot of duress as the Syrian government was making a lot of headway in a
fierce offensive. I saw some very heavy fighting that I myself of course, witness only a few days ago, in Aleppo as well. And that sent many
civilians fleeing for their lives trying to get to safety, Maggie.
LAKE: And Fred, we've heard just harrowing stories of the civilians were caught in there. Of reports that there may be children and some people
posting online what appear to be final messages.
PLEITGEN: Certainly, there were a lot of people who were afraid. Fearing that when those government forces swept a lot of the areas that they moved
into that there would be atrocities committed by those government forces. There was of the U.N. who said that they had heard of reports that perhaps
there were some extra judicial executions that took place. They said that they had heard this from sources who were credible in the past but they
weren't able to verify whether or not that was actually true. But of course, a lot of the people who have been inside those rebel controlled
territories in Aleppo over the past years, they would fear those government forces coming in. Nevertheless, over the past couple of days, over the
past week, there have been tens of thousands of people crossing the lines and making their way to government territory to try to get to safety,
LAKE: All right, Fred Pleitgen, thank you very much for bringing us right up to date.
Rex Tillerson's first job out of the Exxon C suite and into politics. Will be one of the biggest there is. Top Republicans in Congress say Trump's
nominee for Secretary of State has all of the experience he needs. Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell, wrote, "Rex Tillerson's decades of
experience have been widely recognized for forward-looking strategic planning, managing international partnerships and risk, and focused
leadership around the world. He will bring these critical skills, knowledge and capabilities into an important role after eight years of the
Obama administration's uncertain leadership."
Tillerson's nomination means we have to update our running tab of millionaires Trump has picked to run his White House. If confirmed the
Exxon CEO would join six other billionaires or millionaires in the cabinet.
Joining me now is Bruce Turkel. He is the CEO of Turkel brands and author of "All About Them, Grow Your Business by Focusing on Others". Bruce,
thanks for being with us today. A lot of people commenting that this looks more like a board room than a cabinet. We do have all of this business
expertise. Can that translate into success in the political world?
BRUCE TURKEL, CEO, TURKEL BRANDS: I think that remains to be seen. But I think what's important, at least from my point of view, is how this
communicates to the people who voted for Trump and the people who supported Trump. On the one hand, he said he was going to do different things. He's
a businessman and he's in a business environment, that's his reasoning. On the other hand, he said he was all about the little guy. He was the
populist. And I have to say, looking at the net worth of the people he's bringing in, he's doing none of that.
LAKE: Yes. They are outside Washington at least and he sort of said, hey, I need people who know how to do things. I mean, this is who I have to
work with in some way. What do they need to do differently do you think, as they transition into the world of politics? Which let's face it, is a
lot more bureaucratic in some instances than the private sector.
TURKEL: Well, you said the two perfect things. What do they have to do differently? That's what Trump's entire campaign message was about. So,
if you want to do something different, in his words, you need different people to do it. That's the suggestion. But on the other hand, you said
the even smarter thing, which was it's a bureaucratic environment. And you know the mantra of bureaucrats, we were here before you got here. Will be
here after you leave. You're not changing us. And I think he's going to find a lot of pushback both public, but more importantly private, I'm
getting things done.
LAKE: And that's really important, because it is it is both sort of, you know, civil workers in all of these agencies that keep the wheels of
government moving. It's sort of like if you bring an outsider into a company and ask them to turn it around when they don't know any of the
history. We've seen some terrific examples of that working and we've seen some epic fails on that.
I want to ask you about scores on their communication skills so far. We've had a lot of coming from the Trump administration in general, discussions
on Twitter. Whether it's aimed at security forces intelligence, CIA, about military spending. Is that the best way to dictate policy from the outside
on social media delivering it at the same time you're addressing the public?
TURKEL: I think it's safe to say that nobody knows. The truth is he change the way communication was done in the election period.
[16:40:00] And now he's sticking with what worked. The big question of course is, is what worked before he got elected, what's going to work
afterwards. But he has something that nobody's had before, which is he can play -- he can run around the media. He can run around all of the people
who are in between him and his messages to his audiences. And with his Twitter account, he can speak directly to the people he thinks are
supporting him. Whether that will work or not remains to be seen.
LAKE: one of the things that they've discussed is that these people in many cases our dealmakers. We hear that come up again and again. We know
Trump is, you know, the ultimate author of "The Art of the Deal". He sees himself as a dealmaker. How important is that skill for a politician to
have? We haven't had a lot of compromiser deals in Washington lately.
TURKEL: It's interesting. Once again, you're hitting all the right words. Deal making is critical, but as we know from history, and as we know from
the different people in office who got things done, compromise is a big part of that. Now, you have a very polarized electorate. You have very
polarized legislators. You have someone, who let's face it, is not giving quarter to the other side. How do you make deals if in fact you don't
create opportunities for both sides to win? And the more deal makers you bring in who are in that millionaire/billionaire class, are you going to
make opportunities for them to be willing to give something up? It seems to me it sounds good. It sounds powerful but in the real day-to-day way
that Washington works, it's very likely that nothing is going to get done.
LAKE: Yes, I think that is the fear of some, although people are hoping for the best. Bruce Turkel, thanks so much for joining us, sharing your
And we will be right back with more QUEST MEANS BUSINESS in just a moment.
LAKE: In the U.S., there is Silicon Valley. In Europe, there's "SLUSH". In this edition of Europe 2020, Richard QUEST meets up with a global
gathering of technology talent in Finland.
RICHARD QUEST, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): "SLUSH" is no ordinary tech conference. You can tell the difference by the Army of 2000 students that
make the event happen. Oh, and then by the atmosphere when you walk to the front door.
QUEST (on camera): Perhaps it's appropriate in a country that spend so much of the year in darkness, that here at SLUSH the lights are low and the
conversations are intimate. The only problem is I seem to spend most of my time trying to work out where I'm going.
QUEST (voice-over): Now in its ninth year, SLUSH has grown from a small group of Finnish entrepreneurs to an event where more than 2000 startups
meet 1000 investors.
QUEST (on camera): The thing about SLUSH is you really don't have to work that hard trying to find people who got an idea or project while they're
looking for money.
[16:45:00] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I am here to look for investors.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What we have is the world's first handheld wireless printer, but works like spray paint.
QUEST: With that word on the bottom, your sort of matching demand.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, very much so, yes. I think it's saving all the shows, like Webb Summit then you're here. Investment badges is always
assigned to engage people and to come and speak with them and tell you their story.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's scary. That's why like to put on do it.
QUEST (voice-over): One of the most popular investors on the floor is Paul Braigel.
PAUL BRAIGEL, FOUNDING PARTNER, PRESENCE CAPITAL: I think in Europe, that startups we see between here in Sweden, the Nordics are doing an amazing
stuff. I think the Baltics are rising as well, too. But yes, people here are hungrier than, let's say you go to France, they're not as --
QUEST (on camera): Explain why.
BRAIGEL: If I had that answer, I'd be able to solve all of Western Europe's problems, right?
QUEST (voice-over): This would be remarkable if it was only startups. Perhaps what's more interesting is that some of Finland's most established
brands are also shaking things up.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You are sitting now in our A350.
QUEST (on camera): Right.
PEKKA VAURAMO, FINNAIR, CEO: Comfortably, are you in the economy are business?
QUEST: What do you think?
Why are you here?
VAURAMO: Airlines like us, old airlines are stuck sometimes with old idea systems. But we want to change ourselves.
QUEST (voice-over): SLUSH has grown. Expanded internationally and promises to get even bigger in the years ahead.
QUEST (on camera): And so, I leave SLUSH with my very traditional ukulele, full of admiration for the entrepreneurial spirit all around me. And these
youngsters with their brave new ideas. SLUSH truly is the embodiment of Europe 2020. Richard Quest, CNN Helsinki, Finland.
LAKE: A footballer, a model and a philanthropist fighting for the world's most vulnerable children. My interview with David Beckham next.
LAKE: David Beckham says his success on the pitch has given him a powerful platform and he is determined to use it for good. For over a decade
Beckham has been a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. And now as the organization commemorates its 70th anniversary, he's launching a new campaign to fight
against child abuse.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DAVID BECKHAM, UNICEF GOODWILL AMBASSADORSHIP: Violence against children marks them forever. It's wrong.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LAKE: I got to sit down with Beckham here in New York and he told me how his career as a footballer led him to his second career as a
[16:50:00] BECKHAM: Sport is such a huge part of children's lives around the world. Whether it's soccer or whether it's football or whether it's
baseball or whether it's basketball, you know, whether it's rugby, sport is such a powerful tool. And obviously, I've had a very successful career for
22 years. And I was lucky because the teams I played for over my career, you know, Real Madrid, Manchester United and the Galaxy, there are so many
different kinds of fans that I've got from playing for these teams. And it's not until I travel around the world, when I go to China, when I go to
Japan, when I go to the U.S., and when I'm in Europe you realize how powerful football is.
And it really brings children together. It brings people together. And if just for those 90 minutes. You know, I've been in Sierra Leone where the
devastation is devastating. But I see children and I see families sat there in the street watching a small TV and it's soccer. So, it's such a
powerful tool. And I've been lucky that I've been part of sport that actually brings so much happiness to children.
LAKE: And it gives you a powerful platform and marrying that was social media must be a game changer. I know you guys have a really amazing video
that you did with your tattoos. You're bringing them to life. Does that help you get the message out?
BECKHAM: Violence against children, unfortunately, is a huge problem. It's a problem where we've focused on. It's one of the reasons why we did
the campaign. You know, a child dies every five minutes around the world. I mean, how is that even possible in this day and age. It's something that
were really kind of focused in on. It's something that obviously, with my involvement. It's always been about shining a light on certain situations.
Unfortunately, people talk about -- or fortunately, in this case, people talk about my tattoos. The amount of tattoos that I have.
LAKE: You could be my son.
BECKHAM: When I have a tattoo, how long it's taken to have a tattoo, and people talk about that. So, the idea around this was, OK, people talk
about it so let's highlight a really serious cause with this.
BECKHAM, UNICEF AD: Violence against children marks them forever. It's wrong. End it.
BECKHAM: I think it's a really powerful campaign. It's something where it's emotional. It makes you sit up. It makes you take notice. And were
able to highlight the serious problems.
LAKE: Is that why it's so important to go in the field. We see the fantastic videos of you, especially with the kids. How has that change
your perception? Are there moments that really stand out to you that you remember from getting out there?
BECKHAM: Being an ambassador and going into the field has always been very difficult while I've been playing. But obviously, now 3 1/2 years into
retirement from soccer, I've been able to spend more time in the field. And in the field, is where I want to be. I want to be on the ground. I
want to see the changes that are being made. I want to see what really needs a serious focus. And it's one of the reasons why we set the fund up,
our own separate fund, because I felt as much as much as we do for UNICEF, I felt that I could do more.
So, going into the field makes you realize and it makes you see the work that needs to be done and the work that has been done. And every time that
I sit down with donors or when we go to these events and were giving auction prizes away, I say come with me. Come with me on these trips
because is only then when people really do invest. And if you have the time to come on these field trips, that's when you really get these people
taking up -- you know, sitting up and taking notice and realizing actually, this is an organization that does at the right way.
LAKE: He's so passionate about this and they are doing amazing work at UNICEF. You can see more of my interview with David Beckham and read his
thoughts on why we have to take a stand and stand up for children, on CNN.com. He's written a piece for us on how he got involved with the
UNICEF campaign. And importantly, how you can join him. Just go to CNN.com/opinion. And if you want to get involved and help, go to seven.org
where you can find out more details about his Seven Fund. And I know you fans know what that number means.
[16:55:00] Now, if you want a daily digest of the top business stories delivered to your inbox, you can subscribe to the QUEST MEANS BUSINESS
newsletter, featuring Richard's Profitable Moment and all of the top headlines from the rest of the CNN money team. Just go to
CNNMoney.com/Quest to subscribe. It lands in your inbox after the markets close on Wall Street and before Asia opens.
Tomorrow is going to be a huge day for the markets with the Fed decision at 2 p.m. East Coast time. Janet Yellen's press conference shortly
afterwards. We know she'll be asked about Donald Trump, President-elect. And all of this as the Dow sits right near all-time highs, as you can see
it close up today 114 points, after a solid start the Dow suddenly left tire in the afternoon surging toward 20,000. Didn't quite make it. We're
less than 90 points shy of 20,000. Perhaps we'll get there tomorrow. If you look at the Dow steady climb, it is up more than 14 percent since the
start of this year. That is simply staggering for a market this size.
Meanwhile, European stocks are joining in on the rally. They are now trading at 11 month highs. There were gains across the board on Tuesday.
In Milan, two big movers, UniCredit, Italy's largest lender, was up 16 percent after announcing plans to boost its balance sheet. Mediaset, the
Italian broadcaster, was up 32 percent on speculation of a hostile takeover bid by France's Vivendi.
And that is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS. I Maggie Lake in New York. Thanks for watching, we'll see you tomorrow.