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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  April 26, 2017 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT

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tonight, trump's tax plan. our first look at what's in it, what it could mean for millions of families, saving them money, including the trumps, and how does the president plan to pay for it all? north korea secrets, heavy security for an unusual briefing, all u.s. senators at the white house. what were they told? hot housing markets, surging prices, in se places higher than before the recession. what buyers and sellers should know. drugged driving. for the first time it's now blamed for more traffic fatalities than alcohol. and dancing dreams. amazing kids getting their chance to shine. "nightly news" begins right now. >> announcer: from nbc news world headquarters in new york, this is "nbc nightly news" with
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lester holt. good evening to our viewers in the west. with great buildup, the white house announced a massive tax cut plan today, one it's calling the largest tax cut in history, and one that could offer significant relief for a lot of americans, not only families and individuals, but businesses, too. the proposed cut of the corporate tax rate, the focus of a lot of attention tonight, because among the prime beneficiaries, businesses like president trump's. but as they say, the devil is in the details, which appear to be fairly sparse at this point. nbc news national correspondent peter alexander tells us more. >> reporter: tonight, from the president and his team on taxes, an ambitious opening bid. >> we have a once in a generation opportunity to do something really big. >> reporter: the white house outlining a sweeping across the board tax overhaul. >> under the trump plan, we will have a massive tax cut for businesses and massive tax reform.
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>> reporter: the headliner, reducing the number of individual income tax brackets from seven to three, 10%, 25%, and 35%. the administration doubling the standard deduction for individuals and married couples, that would leave more money in people's pockets and make filing taxes easier. >> we are going to eliminate on the personal side all tax deductions other than mortgage interest and charitable deductions. >> reporter: a boon for businesses, too, both large and small. slashing the corporate tax rate to 15%, a cut that would also extend to personal real estate empires, like mr. trump's. a special one-time tax to lure companies to reinvest money kept overseas back here at home, and the elimination of tax breaks for special interests. the goal, stimulating the economy. the specifics, still a mystery. >> we will be back to you with very firm details. >> we're working on lots of details. >> will let you know the specific details. >> reporter: a year ago candidate trump said he believes
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raising taxes on the wealthy. >> i do. including myself. i do. >> will the president end up paying more or less taxes as a result of this plan? >> let me just comment. i can't comment on the president's tax situation, since i don't have access to that. >> reporter: in 2005 the alternative minimum tax that the president now wants to kill, cost him $31 million. just one example how he could benefit. >> it's a great plan. >> reporter: president trump tonight deflecting questions about warnings his plan would blow a hole in the deficit. >> if you just say i can cut taxes without consequence, that's voodoo economics. this is a proposal that's incomplete at best. >> reporter: so how much would the president's tax plan cost? one leading nonpartisan fiscal watch dog group estimates the price tag could approach nearly $6 trillion over the next decade. experts say there is no way this tax reform would be able to pay for itself or even come close. lester? >> peter alexander at the white house, thank you. our business correspondent ali velshi joins us. ali, break this down. if these tax proposals become reality, what does it mean for the
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average taxpayer? >> lester, it means you'll have more money in your bank account. the president wants americans to spend their tax savings by going shopping. it increases demand, jobs and stimulates economic growth, but since the recession, lester, americans have used any tax savings to pay down debt, instead of spending it on goods and services. so under this plan, working families will save on taxes, but the question is, will they spend the extra cash in a way that boosts the economy or will they choose to pay down debt? one of those things helps the economy, the other one just helps the family. lester? >> ali velshi tonight, thank you. tonight there are signs of life for the republican plan to repeal and replace obamacare, thought dead just weeks ago. conservative holdouts now saying they're on board, after a controversial addition that could affect people with preexisting conditions. nbc's kasie hunt has details. >> house will be in order. >> reporter: the republican health care bill making a sudden recovery today. members of the conservative house freedom caucus who
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blocked president trump's first attempt announcing they've come to an agreement to support the american health care act. the move potentially giving house speaker paul ryan a lifeline, enough votes to repeal and replace obamacare. >> i don't know where the final, final vote tally is, but we should be down hopefully in single digits of getting the votes to pass it. >> reporter: is this republicans' best chance to repeal obamacare? >> i think it may be our only chance. >> reporter: conservatives are rallying around an amendment to allow states to opt out of a key tenet of obamacare, covering essential health benefits like emergency room visits and maternity care and also letting insurers charge people with preexisting conditions much more for their insurance. the goal is lowering premiums. >> whatever we can do to get those premiums down but also make sure that the guarantee for people with preexisting conditions is met. >> reporter: and that's the risk. winning over conservatives could cost moderate republican votes. they're concerned about spiking costs for people with preexisting
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conditions. and you've gone from yes to maybe? >> yes to undecided. >> reporter: so the question? when will the house vote to repeal obamacare? >> we'll vote on it when we get the votes. >> reporter: but before president trump can claim victory, there's a tough road ahead in the senate. >> getting a health care bill through the house is a big political win for the president in the end of his first 100 days but he has a lot of work to get something through to the senate and then to get a bill to his desk. that would be a real political victory. >> reporter: house leaders are now trying to figure out just how many moderates can't accept this compromise. they want to seize the momentum, but there's that must pass spending bill they have to deal with this week to keep the government open past friday. lester? >> kasie hunt on capitol hill, thanks. now to the threat from north korea, and something unusual that happened today at the white house. a special briefing for all united states senators behind closed doors under heavy security. we get details from
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nbc news white house correspondent kristen welker. >> reporter: the entire u.s. senate heading to the white house in buses for an urgent and unprecedented briefing on the north korea threat. >> it was a sobering briefing. >> reporter: inside the room, the defense secretary, secretary of state, director of national intelligence, and chairman of the joint chiefs, saying they told senators north korea's pursuit of nuclear weapons is an urgent national security threat, that they are pursuing diplomatic measures, but are prepared to defend ourselves and our allies. one senior administration official saying that includes military preparations. >> north korea is the most dangerous spot on the planet right now. >> reporter: it comes as the top commander in the pacific unveils a new warning tonight, that part of the u.s. is already within striking distance of north korea's arsenal. >> kim jong-un is clearly in a position to threaten hawaii today, in my opinion. >> reporter: the fear, that north korea may develop nuclear missiles that can reach the west coast, and tonight, dueling shows of force, new photos capture kim jong-un smiling and watching live fire exercises, while on the other side of the dmz, u.s. fighter jets
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and tanks held joint drills with south korea, where key parts of a u.s. missile defense system will be operational within days. >> all options are on the table. we want to bring kim jong-un to his senses, not to his knees. >> reporter: since president trump's mar-a-lago advise wit the chinese president, the u.s. has steadily ramped up its pressure on china to help resolve the crisis, but north korea is showing no signs of backing down. >> the rhetoric we're hearing today is roughly what we've heard in the past. what's different is that it is matched by an increasing capability. that is deeply disturbing. >> reporter: tonight, the trump administration is still focusing on diplomacy over military action. one option under consideration, new sanctions against banks that do business with north korea. lester? >> kristen welker also at the white house tonight, thank you. a free speech firestorm has erupted at one of the country's historically progressive universities. at the center of it, conservative pundit ann coulter who was scheduled to speak tomorrow at uc berkeley, but with her appearance canceled, amid fears of violent
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protests, some unlikely people are voicing their support for coulter tonight. nbc's katie beck explains. >> reporter: it's scenes like this, violence, chaos and bloodshed at a pro-trump rally just ten days ago that uc berkeley says made them cancel a speech by conservative firebrand ann coulter. the university forced to sacrifice its reputation as the cradle of the free speech movement for safety, according to officials. coulter insisted she would go regardless, until she lost the support of the conservative groups who invited her today. "it's sickening," she said on twitter, "when a radical thuggish institution like berkeley can so easily snuff out the cherished american right to free speech." groups from the far left and right have clashed in the city several times in recent months. in february, berkeley canceled a speech of alt right provocateur milo yiannopoulos, when violent protests broke out. in a statement defending the cancellations
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berkeley's chancellor said "this is a university, not a battlefield." for civil rights activists, the scenario raises real concern. >> it's very important the government not buckle down and not allow people to silence speakers of any point of view. >> reporter: the cancellation has also made some who normally criticize coulter come to her defense, including senator bernie sanders who called the move "intellectual weakness." growing questions tonight for berkeley, about betraying its first amendment roots. katie beck, nbc news, los angeles. there is news tonight in the economy. the u.s. housing market heating up more than it has in a decade before the great recession devastated so many families. realtors say there hasn't been a better time to be a seller in recent memory. so where does that leave buyers? here's nbc's gabe gutierrez. >> reporter: for christopher hendricks and his wife nelema, this is getting ridiculous. >> it's quite overwhelming. >> reporter: they're hoping to buy their first home in southern
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california, but are facing fierce competition. this open house drew more than 100 potential buyers. three years ago, it sold for $600,000. now it could go for more than $800,000. >> i think it's just what we're used to growing up, and the reality of what things cost here is completely different. >> reporter: in dallas, home prices have skyrocketed 35% above their high before the recession. denver 36%. seattle and portland, also seeing huge spikes since last year. so tell me about this house. realtors say entry level homes are in highest demand. >> it's been crazy. every house goes for over list price. there's usually ten offers. i tell my buyers we have to go in at least at list price, if not more aggressive. >> reporter: nationwide sales of new single family houses have jumped 15% over the past year and half of homes sold in march were on the market for less than a month. why? not enough homes for sale and not enough new construction. the advice for buyers? be ready with a sizeable downpayment. 10% will no longer cut
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it. and don't wait even 24 hours to put in that first offer. >> this spring buying season is a seller's market. in fact, for home buyers, it's shaping up to be the worst spring buying season in decades. >> reporter: tonight, the hendricks family is re-thinking their dream home. >> it seems like there's always going to be at least one large compromise on any house that we choose. >> reporter: and it's tough to put a price on that. gabe gutierrez, nbc news, los angeles. now to the important news that impacts everyone who uses the internet. the trump administration today announcing plans to roll back obama era net neutrality rules on equal access. the move would allow internet service providers to pick and choose who gets fast service and who doesn't. nbc's tom costello explains how it affects you. >> reporter: the best way to understand net neutrality is to think of the internet as a sort of congested superhighway, with most of the fast lanes taken up by big, fat trucks carrying content, like amazon,
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netflix and hulu. in 2015, the obama administration ruled those big companies cannot pay to dominate the fast lanes. everyone from e-commerce giants to mom and pop websites must be treated equally. >> without these regulations, one website could make sure that their content is reaching consumers faster than others, which again ultimately would result in less choice for the consumer. >> reporter: but the white house and the nation's internet service providers or isps, like nbc parent company comcast, at&t, verizon, cox, and others argue the rule stifles competition and creativity. now the fcc is planning to roll back the rule. >> one of the things we don't want to put on the table is the fcc micromanaging the business practices of private companies. >> reporter: democrats object. and the internet association which represents many of the giants says scrapping net neutrality will only hurt consumers by allowing isps to throttle speed saying in a statement, "robust net neutrality
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rules benefit all players in the ecosystem by attracting more people to the web and increasing demand for internet connections." tonight, the nation's internet service providers say they will not interfere with block or throttle internet traffic, but many consumer advocates worry the biggest players could soon pay to speed through the fast lane, while many smaller players are stuck in the slow lane. tom costello, nbc news, washington. still ahead tonight, an eye-opening alert about a growing danger on the road that's now deadlier than drunk driving. why police are struggling to keep up with the crisis. also, up, up and away. the high-flying play at home plate that you simply have to see to believe. stay with us.
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a new report out today is revealing a growing and deadly problem on our nation's roads. for the first time ever, drugs are now to blame for more traffic fatalities involving drivers than alcohol. the research comes as a wave of states across the country legalize marijuana in some form what experts warn to be a contributing factor to a problem on the rise. nbc national correspondent miguel almaguer has details. >> reporter: it's called drugged driving. and now more americans killed behind the wheel are testing positive for drugs than alcohol. according to a report released today, drugs were present in 43% of drivers killed in 2015. for the first time outpacing alcohol related deaths at 37%.
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carol aiker says her son, jacob, was killed by a driver high on opioids. >> the physical pain you eventually heal from, but the emotional pain, just never. >> reporter: the study by the governor's highway safety association includes all categories of drugs, illegal and prescription. the numbers are a dramatic rise, as 29 states and washington, d.c., legalize some form of marijuana. >> were you smoking in the car? >> reporter: unlike a breathalyzer, tests for drunk drivers, police have no standard roadside test to detect most drugs. how difficult is it to know if somebody's on a drug? >> it could be extremely difficult, if you don't know what you're looking for. >> reporter: with police across the country in need of training, the study says many drugged drivers are combining multiple substances. >> i can still hear the impact. >> reporter: mary gaston says her son, blake, was killed by a driver high on medical marijuana. >> there's a
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perception that marijuana does not impair you like alcohol does, that you can smoke a couple joints, eat a couple brownies and go out and drive. that's not true. you are impaired. >> reporter: tonight, the lives behind the numbers, the sobering truth about drugged driving. miguel almaguer, nbc news, los angeles. we're back in a moment with why this was such a sad day for hollywood and movie lovers.
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tonight, hollywood is mourning the loss of acclaimed director jonathan demme. he won an oscar for the 1996 classic "silence of the lambs" starring jodie foster and anthony hopkins and then went on to direct tom hanks in "philadelphia." his career spanned over 40 years. it included the documentary "stop making sense," about the talking heads, considered one of the best concert films ever. jonathan demme passed away from complications from esophageal cancer. he was 73 years old.
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sports fans, you might have noticed your favorite tv or radio personalities missing next time you tune in to espn. the sports network began laying off roughly 100 employees today, including some familiar faces, like long time nfl reporter ed werder, nfl analyst and former quarterback trent dilfer, and "sportscenter" anchor jay crawford. espn has struggled in recent years as viewing habits continue to shift. it's still early in the baseball season but this may already be the play of the year. a leaping somersault to avoid the tag at home plate. the blue jay's chris coghlan jumping head first over the catcher and landing safe on home plate. one of his astonished teammates said, it was like spotting a unicorn, because you might never see it happen again. when we come back, in the spotlight. the joy in the hearts of these kids, realizing their dancing dreams. ===raj oc===
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plus, cremating your pet. why the ashes you receive... may not be what you would expect. ===next close=== the news is next. ==raj/take vo== right now at 6: new surveillance video of a beating near the finally tonight, an update to a story that's touched so many of our viewers, about kids breaking down barriers to realize their dreams of dancing on stage, and my, how the program has grown, since we first visited more
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than a decade ago. nbc's kristen dahlgren with the story. >> reporter: so many little girls dream of being a ballerina. but for some, that can seem out of reach, until now. >> i'm ready to dance. >> i'm ready to dance. >> reporter: joann ferrara founded dancing dreams on a whim to help one of her physical therapy patients. >> she looked at me and matter of factually said, "i wish i could be a dancer but nobody wants me." at that moment, it struck me. >> reporter: what started at five girls is now 100 girls and boys. after months of rehearsals -- ♪ you ain't nothing but a hound dog ♪ >> reporter: a full costume, full house show. ♪ you ain't nothing but a hound dog ♪ >> dancing is not just for girls. it's something for boys, too. ♪ we go together like -- ♪ >> reporter: the kids have different physical challenges. >> we say everyone plie, they just do it in their own way. >> reporter: learning moves and so much more. >> it shows me if you get it wrong the first
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time, not to give up. ♪ these days are ours ♪ >> reporter: the physical benefits can be tremendous, but it's the smiles that keep them coming back. >> sometimes i don't even have words for how excited i am. >> this is their chance to shine, be on stage, be a star, do what their friends, their relatives, their sisters do. ♪ i just want to be a star ♪ >> reporter: each has at least one volunteer, always with them, to help with the dances. for the parents, it's a moment they've dreamed of, too. >> you get to see your child on stage and perform, and be a ballerina. it's amazing. >> reporter: a program making dreams come true. and making sure every last child takes a bow. kristen dahlgren, nbc news, new york. and that's going to do it for us on a wednesday night. i'm lester holt. for all of us at nbc news, thank you for watching and good night. in tracking down the female
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attackers. ==raj/2-shot== right now at 6:00, new surveillance video of a beating in the san jose state campus. officers are asking for help in tracking down the female attackers. the news at 6:00 starts right now. good evening, thanks for being with us. i'm raj mathai. i'm jessica aguirre. it's a brawl outside of a fast food restaurant. it's a vie lept beating across from san jose state. she was attacked by a group of women. michelle roberts is there.
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>> reporter: no students are believed to be involved in the incident. it happened in the parking lot behind me and on the sidewalk. many students walking by this area, it's a busy area, say any time violence happens on or near campus, it's alarming. >> we try to go in groups. >> reporter: some san jose state students will take extra precautions at night about a brutal attack caught on camera. the fight broke out outside of jack-in-the-box across from campus. >> people are coming and it's bad for business. >> reporter: the owner of la victoria tackry a, he installed several surveillance cameras following a recent shooting in the area. this is what happened at 1:30 this morning. the victim appears to be the woman in the dark clothing. other women are throwing punches and at least one of the attackers was using a bottle as a weapon. about a minute into the attack,


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