Skip to main content

tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  January 31, 2017 5:30pm-6:01pm PST

5:30 pm
appointed by president trump. back to lester holt. breaking news tonight, president trump has just made his pick for the u.s. supreme court and a dramatic showdown awaits. "nightly news" begins right now. >> announcer: from nbc news world headquarters in new york, this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. >> good evening to our viewers in the west. it is one of the president's most impactful decisions with the ramifications being felt for generations and one that tonight just 12 days into his presidency, donald trump has made, naming his choice to replace the late antonin scalia. the nominee is neil gorsuch, 49 years old. he serves on the 10th u.s. court of appeals
5:31 pm
in denver. this was made during a primetime made-for-tv event. pete williams covers the supreme court for us and that's where we begin with the breaking news. pete, what can you te tell us? >> reporter: lester, good evening. there was drama as the announcement was made. neil gorsuch said, so that was a surprise, was it? with maximum drama in primetime -- >> judge gorsuch has outstanding legal skills, a brilliant mind, tremendous discipline and has earned bipartisan support. >> standing here in a house of history and acutely aware of my own imperfections, i pledge that if i am confirmed, i will do all my power permits of this great country. >> reporter: neil gorsuch would bring a westerner senseability
5:32 pm
to the supreme court. he's a judge on the 10th circuit court of appeals put their eight years ago by george w. bush, easily confirmed. he's not written on any highly controversial cases like abortion but he did write about hobby lobby who said that they should be exempt from the requirements of obamacare. he met his wife while studying in england. he got his first taste of judge ship while in high school. he spent two summers as a u.s. senate page and knows the supreme court, too. he was a law clerk to retiring justice byron white, a fellow colora colorado. >> we had the
5:33 pm
situation for the first time in u.s. history that a supreme court seat has been stolen from one president and delivered to another. and that's an unacceptable thing to do. >> reporter: if neil gorsuch is confirmed, he would become the first supreme court justice in history to serve alongside a justice he once clerked for. the senate will probably vote on his nomination in mid-april. the last time the senate voted when he was a federal district court judge, the vote on his nomination was unanimous. lester? >> pete williams at the supreme court, thank you. knew to t now to the growing fallout from president trump's firing of the attorney general for refusing to defend that order last night. the white house claimed today it's not actually a ban despite the president repeatedly calling it. white house correspondent kristen welker has details. >> reporter: days after president trump's immigration order, the white house still under fire tonight. house speaker paul ryan criticizing how
5:34 pm
it was handled. >> i think it's regrettable that there was some confusion on the rollout of this. >> reporter: moments later, the homeland security secretary coming out denying reports he had not been aware of the order ahead of time. >> i had an opportunity to look at at least two drafts. >> reporter: the move, which temporarily bans travel from seven majority-muslim nations is not targeting a religion. >> this is not, i repeat, not a ban on muslims. >> reporter: and the white house today insisting it's not a travel ban at all. >> it's not a travel ban. >> reporter: despite president trump calling it a ban over the weekend. >> we're going to have a very, very strict ban. >> reporter: and again on twitter yesterday. >> the president himself called it a ban. is he confused or are you confused? >> no, i'm not confused. the word being used to describe it are derived from what the
5:35 pm
media has been calling it. it's extreme vetting. >> reporter: this after a major shakeup over not ousting sally yates after she refused to defend the president's immigration order releasing a statement saying she's not convinced the executive order is lawful even though the justice department legal counsel signed off on it. by 9:00 p.m. yates' replacement, dana boente, was sworn in. she was pressed on how she would handle a disagreement with trump's current pick for attorney general, jeff sessions. >> should the attorney general or the deputy attorney general say no? >> senator, i believe that the attorney general or the deputy attorney general has an obligation to follow the law. >> reporter: senator sessions' confirmation process is now more contentious in the wake of the yates
5:36 pm
ouster. lester? >> kristen welker at the white house, thank you. the trump administration deciding to keep one of president obama's executive orders in place, protecting the rights of the lgbt employees working for federal contractors. there is drama swirling around president trump's nominee for secretary of education. as democrats raise concerns about her qualifications and now this, a report that some of her answers appear to be copied from multiple sources without attribution. we get details from nbc's chief education correspondent rehema ellis. >> reporter: betsy devos was approved by the senate committee by just one vote after a fiery discussion about her qualifications to be secretary of education. >> it is hard to imagine a candidate less qualified or more dangerous.
5:37 pm
>> i think she'll be an excellent education secretary because she cares about children. >> reporter: today, "the washington post" reported, answers she provided to senators seemed copied, almost word for word, from an obama administration official's old press release. writing, "every child deserves to attend school in a safe, supportive environment where they can learn, thrive and grow." >> many of the responses look copied and pasted from previous statements. >> reporter: adding fuel to protests that devos lacks experience, never having been a teacher, she never attended or sent her children to public school. earlier this month, she defended her commitment to improving education. >> for nearly three decades, i've been involved in education as a volunteer and advocate for children and a voice for parents. >> reporter: devos, a billionaire, has spent millions of her family's fortune in her home state of michigan pushing for charter schools. now nearly half the students in the city of detroit are in
5:38 pm
charters. while some studies show they outperform public schools, michigan overall still ranks among the worst of the nation's schools on standardized tests. but at this charter school, a 16-year-old's mom says her daughter's grades have improved. >> but now she's back to as and bs like i'm used to my daughter doing. i just think she does better in a charter school versus a public school. >> reporter: she believes charter schools and their champions should be given a chance. but many disagree. the nation's largest teacher's union says one million opposition e-mails have been sent to senators. the trump administration called the accusations she plagiarized character assassination. while she made it through the senate committee today, her confirmation is not assured. lester? >> we're learning new details about a covert american operation gone bad in yemen in which a member of s.e.a.l. team 6 and an 8-year-old girl, the
5:39 pm
daughter of an al qaeda leader, were killed. a lot of questions about what happened. or pentagon correspondent hans nichols has more. >> reporter: navy s.e.a.l.s waiting for a moonless night, an authorization from their new president. but nbc has learned that the predawn raid in south central yemen went wrong almost from the beginning leaving a navy s.e.a.l. dead. the target, not high value terrorists but hard drives loaded with al qaeda documents and potential terrorist plots. the operation, months in preparation. but the squad from s.e.a.l. team 6 encountered smalls arms fired. one was wounded fatally. william ryan owens, a father of three from peoria, illinois. an osprey involved in the mission made a hard landing. three more u.s. troops were injured. osprey destroyed.
5:40 pm
president trump was forced to make the most condolence call of his presidency, reaching the relatives of officer owens. >> we could never repay the debt of gratitude we owe him, the freedom he fought for and sacrifice he made. >> reporter: the number of dead militants is at 14 despite local reports of noncombatants that were killed. among those reported dead, an 8-year-old, the daughter of anwar al awlaki, the influential leader who was killed five years ago. her grandfather saying he identified her body from a photo taken at the scene. the opportunity presented itself under the new administration. hans nichols, nbc news. now to the landmark decision bringing change to one of the nation's largest youth organizations, the boy scouts of america, says effectively immediately, transgender boys can
5:41 pm
now join the group that until recently banned gay scouts and leaders. nbc news national correspondent miguel almaguer has the reaction. >> reporter: rooted in tradition and family values, tonight, the boy scouts of america is reversing a century-old stand, allowing transgender boys to join. the landmark decision triggering meaningful change for this 8-year-old. >> they should be accepted just like me and they should be respected, compassioned and loved. >> reporter: after joining the cub scouts last year, christy maldonado says joe was kicked out when leaders learned that he was born a girl in 2008. >> he's no different than any other kids. and it's not the kids that had an issue. it's the parents. >> reporter: christy says the scouts changed their policy after she filed this lawsuit claiming discrimination. the scouts releasing
5:42 pm
this video statement. >> after weeks of significant conversations at all levels of our organization, we realize that referring to birth certificates as the reference point is no longer sufficient. >> reporter: in recent years, they opened their ban on gay participating in the organization and allowed gay adults to serve as leaders. but for joe, this isn't about politics. it's about camping. >> i hope i get a lot of badges. i hope i'm, you know, learn a lot of stuff, i hope i do fun activities. >> reporter: tonight, a historic institution built on values, now re-evaluating its own. miguel almaguer, nbc news, los angeles. there's a lot more to tell you about here this evening. an important warning about the dangers of over-the-counter sleeping pills. do you turn to them too often when you can't get a good night's sleep? we'll talk about the potential side effects you may have never concerned. also, the war
5:43 pm
between two retail giants heating up. walmart's new incentive aimed at luring shoppers away from amazon. you don't let anything keep you sidelined.
5:44 pm
that's why you drink ensure. with 9 grams of protein and 26 vitamins and minerals. for the strength and energy to get back to doing... ...what you love. ensure. always be you. whonly new alka-seltzer plus t want powerful relief. free of artificial dyes and preservatives liquid gels delivers the powerful cold symptom relief you need without the unnecessary additives you don't.
5:45 pm
loudspeaker: clean up, aisle 4. alka-seltzer plus liquid gels.
5:46 pm
we're back now with a wake-up call about many of those over-the-counter sleep aids millions of people take before bed. so popular that americans spend over $425 million on them a year. there's startling new evidence that many are misusing them not realizing that can lead to serious side effects. here's nbc's kristen dahlgren. >> reporter: before sunrise in st. louis amber johnson is up and ready to go. >> i'm a morning person. >> reporter: a far cry from just a few months ago. >> i was cranky. >> reporter: she couldn't sleep so she turned to over-the-counter sleep aids. >> i tried tylenol pm, aleve pm, nyquil zs. >> how long were you taking them? >> a couple of years. >> reporter: she's not alone.
5:47 pm
a new survey found 18% of people who say they have taken over-the-counter sleep aids in the past year did so on a daily basis. 41% said they have taken them for a year or longer. >> sometimes it can be dangerous. >> reporter: a big concern for sleep doctors. >> we know that some of the common ingredients can cause liver damage. we know that ibuprofen can cause kidney or liver damage. >> reporter: most contain an allergy medication that makes people sleepy. okay to take for up to two weeks but doctors say potentially dangerous for much longer. in a statement, the consumer health care products association say these drugs are approved by the fda to treat occasional sleeplessness, not long term sleep disorders or insomnia. she's adjusted her sleeping routine. always going to bed and waking up at the
5:48 pm
same time, keeping the room cool and dark. she now sleeps through the night, no medicine. >> i was really amazed. >> reporter: a big awakening for a woman who once thought she couldn't do it without a pill. kristen dahlgren, nbc news, st. louis. we are back in a moment with a shocking discovery. what was found tucked in the nose of an airplane.
5:49 pm
5:50 pm
5:51 pm
the stakes have been raised this evening in the war between two shopping giants, walmart, the world's largest retailer is making a major play against rival amazon offering free two-day shipping without charging a membership fee as amazon does. nbc's gabe gutierrez explains how it could all impact the way you shop. >> reporter: with three kids under 10 years old, antonella prefers to do her
5:52 pm
shopping at home. you're ordering something online every day? >> yes. >> wow. >> reporter: she's a loyal amazon prime user. $99 a year for unlimited two-day shipping. >> if it takes a week to get to me, i feel like that's ancient. that's way too long. >> reporter: walmart is swooping in now offering free two-day shipping to all customers on more than two million products after a minimum purchase of $35. the retail giant is scrapping its previous subscription service amid fierce competition from amazon. >> we do feel like we're a first mover here and we do think that this will be a trend in the future. >> reporter: still online, walmart has a long way to go. amazon hit $107 billion in sales in 2015. walmart's internet sales just 14 billion. for the best deal, retail experts urge consumers to check the minimum thresholds for free shipping. for example, is $25 in purchases. less than walmart's but shipping takes three days. >> free shipping is very important to shoppers. that is one of the highest if not number
5:53 pm
one reasons that consumers will decide not to go through with a purchase. >> reporter: online retailers fighting for customers. how long is too long to wait for an order online? >> three days. >> reporter: three days? that's it, max. >> yes. >> reporter: in the latest shipping war, patience is not a virtual. a maintenance worker for american airlines got a shock at the tulsa airport after stumbling upon 31 pounds of cocaine hidden in the nose of 757 passenger plane. investigators believe it was placed there by smugglers. the street value of the drugs close to $350,000. when we come back, a principal who is really a cut above. what inspired him to lose his locks with the whole school watching. supreme court pick.
5:54 pm
5:55 pm
5:56 pm
===peggy/vo=== the bay area opposition.===raj/ and the decision expected any minute from behind these closed doors. how a bay area county n ans to take on the trump administration. ===raj/next close=== final low finally tonight, the lesson kids at one middle
5:57 pm
school that will never forget and the principal who is getting a lot of buzz for going above and beyond for one of his students. we are introduced to them both in our inspiring america report. >> reporter: not much comes between a boy and his dog, but when jackson johnston discovered his other best friend needed support, he had a brave idea. his grandfather papa rick has cancer and was about to enter chemo, so jackson pulled out the clippers and shaved his head. >> i've always wanted to be just like him. knowing that i made him feel good when he didn't feel that well meant a lot to me. >> reporter: when the 11-year-old went back to school, some kids didn't understand. >> right off the bat i got two mean comments, hey baldy and you look like you got cancer. >> reporter: that night, his mom got a message from the principal. >> he said, do you have your clippers? i said, yes, i do.
5:58 pm
he said, send them to school with jackson. >> stand up for them and make a difference. >> reporter: school principal got wind of what went on. >> everybody has some kind of battle they are fighting so the message is support one another. >> reporter: in front of the whole school, jackson shaved mr. hadley's had. >> you educate the heart, i think you can educate the mind. >> reporter: and the kids were listening. >> it doesn't matter what you look like because everybody on the inside is the same. >> when someone really needs support, everyone comes together as one for someone. >> just don't judge a book by its cover because there could be a deeper story in it. >> you reshaved it again? >> yeah. >> i should have done mine. >> reporter: sometimes life's best lessons aren't just found in a book. get well soon papa rick. kevin tibbles, nbc news, iowa. >> that's going to do it for us on a tuesday night. i'm lester holt for all of us at nbc news, thank you for watching and good night.
5:59 pm
today i'm keeping another promise to the american people by nominating judge neil gorsuch. >> right now at 6:00 we're following breaking news. president trump announces his pick for the supreme court. the news at 6:00 starts right now. good evening to you. i'm peggy bunker. >> and i'm raj mathai. he could shape america's legal landscape for decades. today mr. trump announced his supreme court nominee. you might have seen the coverage of the announcement from the white house right here on the nbc bay area.
6:00 pm
president trump nominating neil gorsuch but already pushback from bay area politicians. scott budman joins was the latest details. >> most court watchers had narrowed it down to two and now we know mr. trump's first choice is neil gorsuch. the president saying gorsuch who serves on the tenth circuit court in denver and attended harvard law school with president obama is someone driven to uphold our laws. gorsuch known to be a strict originalist, that is someone who is known to interpret the constitution's meaning as stable from the time of its writing. he's a little bit of what he had to say earlier tonight. >> it is the rule of judges to apply, not alter the work of the people's representatives. a judge who likes every outcome he reaches is very likely a bad judge.


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on