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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  June 14, 2022 6:30pm-7:00pm PDT

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and storms on the move in the east. wind gusts up to 65 miles an hour. 're tracking it all. also tonight, the growing fears of a recession. president biden defending his handling of the economy as the fed holds a critical meeting. it could announce the biggest rate hike in nearly 30 years. the president set to visit saudi arabia and meet with the crown prince despite his campaign vow to make the country a pariah after the murder of jamal khashoggi. the backlash tonight the battle for eastern ukraine. the critical city on the brink after the last remaining bridge was destroyed. our exclusive one on one with amber heard after the jury sided with ex-husband johnny depp. does she still stand by her testimony the message she says the verdict sends to women and what she deeply regrets after a year away from the courts, serena williams announcing her comeback and a picture a day for 25 years a life in photos,
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inspiring america. >> announcer: this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt good evening, everyone forecasters are using terms like "heat dome" and "atmospheric rivers" to describe what is driving extreme weather conditions across the country tonight, from dangerous rain and flooding to crippling heat many will see triple-digit highs in fact over the course of the next seven days, over 250 million americans can expect temperatures 90 or hotter. and while drought-stricken parts of the west can't seem to buy a drop of rain, too much of it has fallen in montana and wyoming. it's been wiping out bridges, roads, and literally carrying houses away. yellowstone park closed tonight a crushing start to the park's busy vacation season. from tornado sirens blaring in chicago to fires in the west, this is already shaping up to be a summer to remember our team is in place to cover it all, starting tonight with
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gadi schwartz. >> reporter: tonight, weather extremes as destructive as they are contradictory. in the west, fires, historic flooding, and extreme drought, all at the same time the latest epicenter for devastation, yellowstone national park, an icon of mother nature. parts now underwater with unprecedented flash flooding just as the busy summer tourist season begins. onlookers watching helplessly as this two-story home was swallowed by the yellowstone river. the level so high and the current so strong, this bridge was also swept away by raging waters the floods stemming from a thousand-mile-long atmospheric river, dumping massive amounts of rain. that along with rapidly melting snowpack making roads completely impassible. >> in our basement, and there's two feet covering the entire street in front of our house, rolling as fast as the river is. >> reporter: cnbc's valerie castro is in
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livingston, montana. >> as you can see, some homes here in livingston have already flooded. the local hospital which was evacuated remains under several feet of water. and now the winds are yet another force to deal with as the cleanup process begins >> reporter: but the rain did little for fires threatening communities in california a situation made even more dangerous by the mega drought stretching across the west this as record breaking temperatures span much of the country. in several cities the heat index will top 100 degrees today. meanwhile other parts of the country are bracing for severe storms that yesterday tore through the midwest. >> the whole roof fell down >> reporter: at chicago's o'hare, travelers were told to seek shelter >> they moved us away from the windows >> reporter: as near hurricane-force winds toppled trees and ripped apart homes those triple-digit temperatures expected to continue for much of the would he can for millions of americans, promise an on ominous start to what could be a summer
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of extremes, lester. >> gadi schwartz, thanks for more on the massive flooding in montana i'm joined by park county sheriff brad bickler sheriff, thanks for being with us. i want to talk about the evacuations. have you gotten everyone out that needs to get out >> yeah, lester, thanks for having us we're working through, it's kind of an evolving scenario. as the rescue attempts come up, we're continuing to evacuate people as needed but for the moment right now everybody that is currently in danger, we've got them to safe grounds. >> we've seem some pretty dramatic pictures coming from there today. can you tell us what you have seen and what your challenge is tonight? >> yeah, the water level that we're seeing and devastation that's coming from the floodwaters is not anything we've ever experienced here in park county. we've got communities that have been cut off by water big efforts have been opening those roads back up to get resources to those folks that were cut off as well as maybe getting folks out of those areas, to move them to higher ground or we've got visitors
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in our communities like gardner, and trying to get those visitors out of the areas. >> i know you've got a lot on your plate. we thank you for making some time for us, sheriff, appreciate it. >> thank you that brutal heat wave has been going on for days in texas with soaring energy demand causing new concern about the power grid which suffered a catastrophic failure last year. here is morgan chesky. >> reporter: mid-june in texas, and dangerous heat already turning historic austin topping 100 degrees for eight straight days. dallas hitting 103 saturday, tying a daily high from 1911 sweltering temps forcing skyrocketing energy demands matthew browning, one of thousands in north texas who lost power over the weekend when his supplier admitted record breaking heat stressed equipment >> and when we're eventually getting into those triple digits consistently, you know, it's concerning >> reporter: the loss of power from heat reminding many of brutal cold.
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>> every source of power that the state of texas has, has been compromised. >> reporter: the texas freeze in february of 2021 left millions in the dark and cold when the state power grid couldn't keep up ercot, the agency managing the state's no highly scrutinized grid, says it's now performing as needed, as sunday's demand set a new all-time peak. the representative of a trade group of power generators says extreme weathe shortens vital maintenance windows known as shoulder seasons. >> we need to be able to take our maintenance outages to make sure we can run when texans really need us. >> reporter: it's a problem texas witnessed in mid-may when ercot asked one plant to postpone plant maintenance to help meet demand the very next day, the plant went offline due to equipment failure and tonight, it's not power lines but a busted water pipe creating a citywide
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outage in odesa, texas, where city officials said they could go 48 hours without water right in the middle of triple digit temps. lester >> morgan, thank you tomorrow the federal reserve is expected to announce the biggest interest rate hike in almost 30 years in an effort to bring inflation under control. here's tom costello. >> reporter: amid skyrocketing inflation and with polls showing most americans disapproving of his handling of the economy, president biden pointed today to his own successes. >> we've created 8.7 million new jobs in 16 months, an all-time record >> reporter: while again blaming the exploding prices on vladimir putin's war in ukraine >> just as he invaded ukraine, it's gone up $1.74 a gallon, because of nothing else but that. >> reporter: but inflation was running hot well before russia invaded, fueled in part by the supply chain crisis and
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massive pandemic stimulus spending. today, more evidence that inflation is not cooling. the producer price index, a gauge of wholesale prices, up nearly 11% in one year drivers in 21 states plus dc are now paying more than $5 a gallon for gas, a record. >> everyone had it up to here, really. >> reporter: in utah, single mom jamie martinez is struggling to pay for food, gas, and rent jumping $400. >> rent is going to continue increasing. and who knows when it's going to be a point where i'm like, okay, i can't afford this anymore, where am i supposed to live >> reporter: after already raising interest rates twice this year, the federal reserve is expected to hike rates tomorrow by the most since 1994. three-quarters of a percentage point what's the risk the fed slams on the brake too hard and pushes the economy into a recession? >> there's a definite risk the fed will raise rates both too quickly and too far. we've never really come out of a pandemic
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before like this so we it don't know how much underlying momentum there is to the economy. >> reporter: but higher rates mean americans pay more for credit cards, car loans and mortgages. a new $400,000 mortgage on january 1st cost $17.45 a month. after two rate hikes this year that payment is now $589 more likely to go up with higher rates to come >> tom, a lot of folks were rocked by the big stock market drop yesterday. what did it look like today? >> reporter: the dow lost 151 points today, the s&p down a fraction, nasdaq up just 19. investors will be making their next decisions based on what the fed decides on rates but already the bond market is suggesting a greater risk for a recession, lester >> tom costello, thank you. amid those record high gas prices the white house now says president biden will visit saudi arabia next month despite his campaign promise to isolate the saudi government peter alexander is at the white house. peter, this is a big turnabout for the president. >> reporter: lester, that's exactly right, this is a dramatic
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reversal for president biden who is now breaking his campaign pledge to make saudi arabia a pariah over its human rights record his press secretary, we've heard from them, but with gas prices soaring to all-time highs, the president heads to the middle east for the first time next month hoping to repair relations. the white house denies the visit will primarily focus on getting the saudis to pump more oil. but u.s. officials acknowledge oil is a key factor after stops in israel and the west bank president biden will meet with crown prince mohammed bin salman, the very person that u.s. intelligence believes ordered jamal khashoggi's murder lester >> peter, thank you. in ukraine, the last bridge linking a besieged eastern city with the rest of the country has been destroyed. as russian forces gain more ground and thousands of civilians struggle to get out. molly hunter is in ukraine. >> reporter: evacuations here only happen at one speed. quickly, this
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ukrainian soldier says three people, no, four "hurry up," he says, "moving any slower and it's fatal." russia is now gaining more and more ground in the east. today the last bridge out of severodonetsk blown up it's the only major city in the luhansk province not yet under russian control. before the war, russian-backed separatists controlled crimea and parts of the donbas region. today russia now controls a vast area of eastern and southern ukraine, claiming its prize land bridge between crimea and the russian border taking complete control of the donbas has become russian president putin's goal after failing to capture kyiv or the eastern city of kharkiv. president zelenskyy recently said russia has seized 20% of the country, but not severodonetsk, "at least not tonight. this woman evacuated three days ago when her brother was injured in shelling. he was screaming, she says his leg was bleeding badly.
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over the next 24 hours, under intense shelling, she saved his life, getting him out in a wheelbarrow, then in the trunk of a car, making it to ukrainian-controlled territory. and today his leg was amputated. do you think you'll ever go home "right now," she says, "we live day by day, we hope. i don't know how i'm going to keep on living." and tonight president zelenskyy making another urgent plea. he says ukraine cannot turn the tide in this war without more western weapons and fast lester >> molly hunter tonight, thank you in 60 seconds, what you haven't seen from savannah guthrie's exclusive interview with amber heard. why she says she tried to settle instead of going to trial and what she regrets, next
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back now with our exclusive one on one interview with amber heard, speaking out after her defamation trial with ex-husband johnny depp. heard sharing her thoughts on the jury, the message the verdict sent, and what she deeply regrets we get more from miguel almaguer. >> to my dying day, i will stand by every
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word of my testimony >> reporter: a defiant amber heard tonight also reflective on what her loss in ex-husband johnny depp's defamation suit means beyond her case. >> i was thinking if it's this hard for me, if it's this hard to be believed. i have mountains of evidence i documented things that most women don't have the luxury of even thinking about. >> reporter: sitting down for a nbc news exclusive with savannah guthrie, heard said she never wanted to go to trial, never wanted the publicity or circus that surrounded the case >> did you ever try to settle >> yeah, of course all i wanted to do was move on with my life >> reporter: the sordid and salacious six-week trial in which both parties denied physical abuse
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was every bit the hollywood drama. outside the courtroom, it was pandemonium and fodder for the tabloids a viral sensation leaning heavily in support of depp. >> the vast majority of this trial was played out on social media. i think that this trial is an example of that gone haywire, gone amok. and the jury is not immune to that >> reporter: the jury decided heard defamed depp after she wrote an op-ed about being the public figure of domestic abuse and awarded him more than $10 million. depp's lawyers say he won in part because he was honest and heard was not about their roles in their relationship >> i did do and say horrible, regrettable things throughout my relationship i behaved in horrible, almost unrecognizable to myself ways i have so much regret. >> reporter: some of that regrettable behavior recorded and played in court for the world to hear.
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>> tell the world, johnny tell them, i, johnny depp, i' a victim too of domestic violence. >> i deeply regret how i was and who i became in that relationship i -- more than that, i hate what that reality made me. >> reporter: tonight, an ugly reality that may be headed to a courtroom sequel, with the actress set to appeal her loss. miguel almaguer, nbc news >> you can see more of our interview with amber heard tomorrow on "today" and friday on a special edition of "dateline" at 8:00 p.m. eastern one of the greatest tennis players of all time is making a comeback, serena williams announcing she'll play at wimbledon next month. the 23-time grand clam champ hasn't competed in nearly a year since exiting the first round at wimbledon with an injury she received a wild card invitation to make her much-anticipated return up next for us, profiting from the pandemic
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how one small company got hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars. was the money mismanaged
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back now with new questions over covid relief money and how it was distributed congressional investigators saying one small company pocketed hundreds of millions in taxpayer dollars. here's gabe gutierrez. >> reporter: this nondescript office building in virginia housed a company the feds hired to help distribute billions of
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dollars in loans to help struggling small businesses during the pandemic the firm, r.e.r. solutions, got a no-bid $750 million contract the company netted $340 million in windfall profits despite assigning the work to just six of its employees, according to a u.s. house subcommittee report released today. why do you think the covid spending at that time was so out of control? >> because we did not have effective enforcement of the oversight procedures that congress put in place. >> reporter: the economic injury disaster loan program, known as eidl, has previously been under scrutiny as the justice department's inspector general told lester >> the small business administration in sending that money out largely relied on an honor system >> reporter: prosecutors had already accused some borrowers of using the money to buy luxury homes and cryptocurrencies now investigators are
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looking closer at companies that distributed the money. now are there revelations that as much as 20% of the funds may have been awarded to fraudsters. >> each dollar stolen was a dollar taken from a small restaurant owner who wanted nothing more than to keep our staff on the payroll >> reporter: r.e.r. told investigators it subcontracted part of the work out to two other companies. the firm, which has not been charged with any crime or misconduct, did not respond to nbc news' repeated request for comment. >> the company was taking advantage of the law that existed >> reporter: this could just be the tip of the iceberg there are more than 1,100 ongoing investigations into pandemic-related small business loans lester >> gabe gutierrez, thank you. up next tonight, how a man's quest to take a picture a day developed into a lifelong passion
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finally tonight, in our "inspiring america" segment, how one man's mission to take a photo a day turned into a lifelong lesson about seeing the bigger picture here's joe fryer >> reporter: on a farm in rural minnesota, michael dearing is harvesting memories. moments immortalized of 4x6 scraps of photo
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paper. >> this is a lifelong pursuit. it really is >> reporter: every single day dearing takes a single photo with his point and shoot film camera. his picture of the day. >> 11/1/96 with my parents having dinner. >> reporter: it's a project that started nearly 26 years ago. in that time he's captured 9,000 images stored in a fireproof safe >> besides my own family, this is probably the most valuable thing in my life >> reporter: he documents everything from the birth of his son to his father's funeral. this is i guess an autobiography. >> you want to kno where you're going, look back, right i often think of my picture of the day project as leaving breadcrumbs on the trail. >> reporter: on the day we were with him that trail led to the side of a country road. >> here it comes >> reporter: where dearing patiently waited for his one shot >> lo and behold, over the horizon.
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he'll never know he's part of my life. >> reporter: once a month dearing swings by the film lab to pick up his latest batch of prints. >> god, i love that shot >> reporter: in a world of instant digital gratification, this, he says, is far more fulfilling. >> my son getting fitted for his first suit ever. that's a special thing for a father i can't emphasize that enough, that everybody should do this take inventory in your life, slow it down, and notice the little things that life shows you every single day >> reporter: because life can go by in a snap joe fryer, nbc news, minnesota. >> picture that. that's "nightly news" for this tuesday. thank you for watching i'm lester holt. please take care of yourself and each other. good night
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the steepest price hikes we have seen in decades. we are diving into a record inflation. what is causing it, how much is hurting our personal finances and local businesses? how large corporations may be taking advantage of us. we will be joined by former secretary of labor robert reisch. our mail and delivery drivers -- crimes happening all across the bay area. later we will tell you what bill gates was doing in berkeley today. good evening this is an these the news tonight. we are covering all those topics and more but we want to start with breaking news, a brush fire burning near homes


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