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tv   America This Morning  ABC  April 6, 2018 4:00am-4:30am PDT

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america this morning. >> have a great weekend. making news in america this morning, crisis mode. the new controversy erupting overnight surrounding epa chief scott pruitt including a $70,000 request to buy two desks for his office. staff members reportedly demoted for opposing him and this morning, what we've learned about pruitt's claim that he didn't know about pay raises for his loyal aides. also breaking overnight, president trump raises the stakes in the trade fight with china announcing $100 billion in possible new tariffs. this morning, china vows to fight back. stocks overnight plunging. paying to use facebook? executive sheryl sandberg explains what went wrong before the company's data scandal and what users have to do to protect their information. plus, a prize fighter on the
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attack throwing a barricade at a bus. this morning, conor mcgregor under arrest. and the stunning moment a bald eagle goes rogue during the national anthem trying to land on this major league pitcher. his unexpected reaction from the outfield. a good friday morning, everyone. we begin with serious new allegations against epa chief scott pruitt. >> he's under new pressure to explain his spending habits. "the new york times" reporting pruitt wanted to spend $70,000 on two desks for his office. and members of his staff were reportedly reassigned or demoted when they questioned him. >> also this morning, new questions are being raised as to whether pruitt was telling the truth when he denied knowing about big pay raises for two of his aides. overnight, two epa officials confirm to abc news that scott pruitt was aware of salary increases given to two of his
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most loyal aides even after the white house refused to sign off on the pay hikes. that corrects what he told fox news on wednesday when he denied knowing about the raises and blamed his staff. >> why did you go around the president and white house to give pay raises to two staffers? -- >> i did not. i found out about it yesterday and changed it. that should not have been done. >> who did it? >> there will be some accountability. >> career person or political person. >> i don't know. >> you run the agency. >> i found out about it yesterday and i corrected the action. >> reporter: one of those totaled nearly $57,000 and there's new controversy surrounding pruitt this morning. "the new york times" reports five epa officials have been reassigned, demoted or removed from their jobs after questioning his spending. the staffers objected to buying two office desks costing $70,000. first class travel, a bulletproof vehicle and a 20-person protective detail. reports also say the lead agent
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in charge of pruitt's security detail was reassigned after rye fusing to use sirens and lights who get through traffic when he was running late for a meeting. he paid far below the cost of similar units. the owner was the wife of a top lobbyist whose clients do business with the epa. >> the officials at this agency reviewed the terms of the lease. >> when did they review it. >> they reviewed ace -- >> march of this year after you moved out. >> that's what is important. they reviewed the terms of the lease. >> reporter: the agency's top ethics watchdog said when they reviewed it last week they didn't have all the facts. behind closed doors sources say the president is not happy about the controversy. but he said this while boarding air force one on thursday. >> scott has done a fantastic job. i think he's a fantastic person. >> pruitt's supporters praise
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him for his effectiveness in reducing regulations and implementing the trump agenda. senator randa paul says he is te bravest and most conservative member of his cabinet. the big story overnight, the escalation in the trade fight. president trump announced $100 billion in possible new tariffs on chinese goods in addition to the $50 billion already announced which prompted china to propose tariffs on many american products including soybeans, pork and whiskey. the white house blames chinese trade practices for the loss of millions of u.s. jobs, insisting the proposed tariffs are only a negotiating employ. but china is not backing down. moments ago its commerce ministry said they will follow through to the end and will not hesitate to fight back at any cost. that threat could send stocks falling on wall street at the opening. dow futures were down sharply overnight. president trump literally tossed out the script during an
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event where he was supposed to promote tax cuts. instead he focused on illegal immigration and his claim about migrants and rape is now in the spotlight this morning as is a claim made about voter fraud. abc's tara palmeri has more. good morning. >> reporter: good morning, diane and kendis. that's right. the president clearly frustrated by the obstacles to building a wall along the mexican border has used the recent uptick in border crossings to make his case. president trump in west virginia literally throwing away his speech on tax reform. >> this was going to be my remarks. it would have taken about two minutes but what the -- that would have been a little boring. >> reporter: instead riffing on one of his favorite topic, immigration, as a caravan of migrants seek political asylum president trump ordered the national guard to the border. he repeated his controversial line that mexicans are rapists.
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>> you remember my opening remarks. everybody said, oh, he was so tough and i used the word rape. and, yes, it came out where this journey coming up, women are raped at levels that nobody has ever seen before. >> reporter: women and girls crossing the border do face the threat of sexual violence. a 2010 amnesty reported that 60% are at risk but the leader of the caravan says there's no reported cases on their journey. trump saying it it reached a point of crisis requested between 2,000 and 4,000 troops until the wall is built. his frustration mounting, not just on immigration, despite dismantling his voter fraud commission he is maintaining previous false claims about massive election theft. >> in many places like california, the same person votes many times. you probably heard about that. >> reporter: last month there was an uptick in illegal crossings but it's overall down
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13% compared to last year. now, that is on top of the 2017 being the lowest number since 1972. diane, kendis. >> all right, that's tara palmeri for us live from d.c., thanks, tara. to the west coast and a magnitude 5.3 earthquake jolting southern california hitting near the channel islands and officials say an early warning systemidts job. [ sirens ] >> earthquake, earthquake. >> that will work. the alert system is still being developed. it gave about ten seconds' warning before the shaking started. people 100 miles away from the e epicenter felt it but no major damage was reported or any injuries for that matter. this year's hurricane season could be just as busy as last year. the annual forecast is out and scientists are predicting seven hurricanes this season and they expect three of them will grow into major hurricanes. of course, three major hurricanes hit the u.s. last year, harvey, irma and maria causing more than $260 billion in damage.
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as for the weather today, winter refuses to quit in much of the country with more april snow on the way and california is bracing for flooding rains. let's take a look at your forecast for this friday. good morning, we are looking at another storm here brewing in the south and as this picks up moisture out of the gulf of mexico we're talking strong to possibly severe thunderstorms. the main threat here will be damaging winds as well as the potential for some flooding. however, can't rule out an isolated tornado as we go through your friday. on the northern side of that system it collides with cold air, one to three inches of snow possible for places like kansas city. i'm meteorologist melissa constanzer with your accuweather forecast. still ahead right here, how travelers could soon cross the atlantic ocean in less than three hours. first what facebook executive sheryl sandberg is now
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saying about paying to use the site. that superstar conor mcgregor is caught on video attacking a bus.
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a japanese volcano put on this spectacular show as lightning exploded over the ash. scientists say this is a rare phenomenon that occurs when friction between ash particles produces electrical charges. the volcano has been erupting for more than a month. >> pretty cool but scary at the same type. hundreds of thousands of customers of delta air lines and sears may have had their credit card information stolen in a series of cyberattacks. the data breach targeted a vendor that ran a chat function on the company's websites. delta says the breach last fall did not affect bookings made on its app or mobile platform.
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sears says customers using sears branded credit cards were not affected. as facebook faces increased scrutiny the second in charge is offering an apology. sheryl sandberg is suggesting that those who want to opt out of data driven ads would have to pay for it because it relies on advertising revenue. she says facebook mishandled the breach which gave access to millioner users' data. >> we are trying to do a forensic audit to find out what they have. the uk government is doing their own investigation so we're waiting. we don't know at all what data they had. >> starting monday facebook says it will provide a link at the top of users' newsfeeds allowing you to check whether your information has been shared. target has agreed to pay nearly $4 million to settle a lawsuit over its hiring
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practices. the suit challenged target's use of criminal background checks saying they disqualified thousands of black and hispanic applicants from getting jobs. target no longer asks about criminal histories on its applications. flying from new york to london could take less than three hours in a supersonic plane being developed by nasa. it signed a $247 million contract with lockheed martin to fill nasa's first experimental jet in more than a decade. it could help bring back supersonic jet travel for the first time since the concorde. the goal to fly 900 miles per hour without a sonic boom. >> that would be nice. all right, when we come back the leaderboard at the masters and the rough start for last year's champ. first why stormy daniels' lawyer says the president's new comments about the porn star are likely an early christmas present. a major cruise line responds after passengers say their trip was a nightmare because of endless construction on the ship.
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did you want to have sex with him? >> no. but i didn't say no. i'm not a victim. i'm not -- >> it was entirely consensual. >> oh, yes, yes. >> for the first time since stormy daniels went public with her alleged affair with the president, well, mr. trump is speaking out about the so-called hush money daniels received. the president surprised reporters on board air force one by taking questions he had previously ignored for several months. >> he denied knowing anything about the $130,000 his longtime attorney michael cohen paid to daniels days before the 2016 election. >> did you know about the $130,000 payment to stormy daniels? >> no, no. what else? >> why did michael cohen make it if there was no truth to her allegations. >> you have to ask michael cohen. michael is my attorney and you'll have to ask michael. >> do you know where he got the money to make that payment? >> no, i don't know. no. >> daniels is suing to have a
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nondiclosure agreement tossed out saying it's not valid because the president did not sign it. now, her attorney says he plans to file a petition on monday to depose the president. a judge had rejected an earlier request to question the president under oath saying it was premature but that attorney now says the president's comments thursday are helping daniels' case. >> this is what happens when you have an undisciplined client as you know from experience. we waited patiently and lo and behold christmas has arrived. the president's comments on air force one are serious for him, serious for michael cohen. how can you have an agreement when one party claims that they don't know anything about the agreement? i mean, these guys are making it up as they go along. they don't know what to say from day in and day out and our case just got a whole lot better. >> the white house denies an affair ever took place but on thursday the president would not answer whether he set up a fund for cohen to withdraw money from. police near los angeles have arrested a man for allegedly
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igniting two small explosive devices inside a sam's club store. the explosion triggered an evacuation but police say nobody was injured. officials say they believe 49-year-old ugo gonzalez acted alone but this morning his motive remains unclear. hundreds of norwegian cruise line passengers are furious over what they describe as the cruise from hell. this is what they say they had to deal with on board the norwegian's cruise from miami to los angeles. heavy construction, dust, chemicals, power tools and areas of the ship cordoned off. they set up a group facebook page to protest. now norwegian is offering them a 100% credit toward a future cruise >> that's a long cruise. they have to do some work during that time, i guess. to the breaking news out of new york right now. the superstar fighter, conor mcgregor, is now charged with three counts of assault after a bizarre attack on a bus. take a look. mcgregor and others caused chaos at the arena in brooklyn that's
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expected to host an you will 34589 fighting championship event tomorrow. mcgregor is seen there throwing a barricade at the bus and then throwing a dolly toward the bus window. it's not clear what the bus might have said to him to cause him to get that angry. the bus was carrying other fighters. at least one of them was injured. mcgregor later surrendered to the police and they say mcgregor will be sued and calling it a bad career move. >> the bus gave him some side-eye. a familiar name tops the leaderboard. jordan spieth lived up to his status as the favorite ending the day with a two-stroke lead but it was a horror show for sergio garcia. you see him hit the shot into the water. that followed with four more balls all rolling, yep and going, going, going, it goes into the water as well. four more shot. he ended up finishing that hole with a 13. >> all right.
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up next, "the pulse," the 91-year-old who just hit the lottery. also ahead, why this california street is being called the most dangerous road in the country. also a bald eagle lands on a baseball player. hear what he said after this moment. but why go back there, when you can stay home, with neulasta onpro? strong chemo can put you at risk of serious infection, which could lead to hospitalizations. in a key study, neulasta reduced the risk of infection from 17% to 1%, a 94% decrease. applied the day of chemo, neulasta onpro is designed to deliver neulasta the next day, so you can stay home. neulasta is for certain cancer patients receiving strong chemotherapy. do not take neulasta if you're allergic to neulasta or neupogen (filgrastim). ruptured spleen, sometimes fatal as well as serious lung problems, allergic reactions, kidney injuries, and capillary leak syndrome have occurred. report abdominal or shoulder tip pain, trouble breathing or allergic reactions to your doctor right away.
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coaster. >> are you fed up. >> yeah, our peaceful neighborhood has turned into a circus. >> the city is considering turning baxter into a one-way street so it won't show up on those apps. >> baxter is basically that. >> that. >> that's a technical thing. chicago area man is proving that good things really do come to those who wait. >> 91-year-old robert schuitt hit the jackpot for a million dollars. he's been playing the lottery since its very first drawing in 1974. >> he says he now has a little cushion and plans to use the cash to remodel his home. congratulations. the sear upon for the minnesota twins home opener didn't go quite as planned after a bald eagle went rogue is there a seattle mariner, james paxton standing in the outfield when that bald eagle tried to land on him. the eagle was supposed to fly to a handler as part of the ceremonial flight over the field. >> the handler said the eagle probably mistook him for another trainer.
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the big storm is finally here. a live look at what you're in for when you head out the door this morning. it's going to be one of the toughest commutes we've seen in a while. >> alexis is off this morning. sue hall, hopefully the rain -- >> let's start with you, mike. a 3 on the storm impact scale. >> yesterday afternoon when we were switching shifts between me and sepencer, we said the possibility of still damage from that is possible. so yeah, we went ahead and bumped it up to a 3. a strong storm. rain, downpours, flooding, possible today through tomorrow morning. wind gusts up to 45 miles per hour. let me get you caught up on the
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flood watch. it starts in about 32 minutes. it's at 5:00 for the north bay. for the santa cruz mountains, because of the flooding potential, debris on the burn scars and a small chance of mud and rock slides. our heaviest rain is in the north bay. it tapers a little towards the south bay. we'll take a look at this in the accuweather 12-hour planner coming up. we have standing water already from overnight rain. look at the golden gate bridge. low clouds over the grade. the visibility is tough. wipers at full force. give yourself plenty of time this morning. standing water is the issue. we're getting some slow traffic around the bay area. several -- about half a dozen solo spinouts. we'll touch on that in a couple of minutes. thanks so much. storm watch this morning. tracking the 3 on the storm impact scale. matt keller live for us in the santa cruz mountains where there's a flood watch this
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morning. matt. >> reporter: good morning. it's never fun to drive on highway 17 up here in the santa cruz mountains when it's raining. get this, when we were coming on to the summit, the fog was so thick that we had a hard time seeing the driveway to turn into. you got to be extra careful up here in the mountains. check out the video of us driving up highway 17 in the mountains here. this is in the past half hour or so. we saw a consistent shower, but nothing too intense. flood watch has been issued through saturday morning. santa cruz county does not anticipate the rivers and streams overflow their banks, but the flood control management team will be monitoring the situation. they put out warnings for people who live in the mountains for flooded trees, downed trees and power outages. people are preparing by making sure they have batteries for flashlights and radios and food and water. we know about all the crashes that happened on highway 17 during the rain and, of course, that's because when we look and
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see the cars driving by, it's wet, it's a different day. it's not sunny outside. the roads are not dry. it's hard to stop. but people are still driving the same way they would in sunny weather. that's always the problem and we see a lot of crashes. so slow down. matt keller, abc 7 news. be people are urged to keep their cell phones nearby to make it easier to receive alerts if creeks and streams have -- will help sonoma county officials monit monitor. the national park service is closing access to yosemite valley because of the storm and that closure starts at 5:00 p.m. today. the park service has issued an alert, urging anyone planning a trip to the park this weekend to make alternative plans. all campground and visitor lodging in yosemite valley will


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