tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC January 30, 2017 5:30pm-6:01pm PST
firestorm over his travel ban. >> we actually had a very good day yesterday in terms of homeland security. >> reporter: he hoped to put an end to the chaos and outrage. protests were all over the country. 108 people were detained including an iraqi and a nine-year-old boy separated from his iranian mother for hours. today they called it a small inconvenience in the name of safety. and tensions mounted as memos circulated, slamming the ban, counter of core values of discrimination. that prompted the white house to release this threat. >> these bureaucrats have a problem with
it? i think they should get with the program or they can go. >> reporter: but the administration facing a barrage of legal challenges, and democrats today also vowing to block the ban, which restricts travel for seven muslim majority countries for 90 days and stops all refugees for coming to the u.s. for 120 days. opponents insist there is no evidence it will make the country safer. >> i got a kid in the military. people overseas on the field of battle who work with our troops should be able to do that and know if they help us they will be protected. >> what do you say to those who argue this travel ban will make the country less safe? >> let's go back and look at what it is. seven countries the obama administration had already identified needed further travel restrictions. >> reporter: that argument is not entirely correct. the obama administration did list those countries as area of concern but never banned travel. today a spokesperson for former president obama said he is heartened by the protesters and insisted the president
fundamentally disagrees with the notion of discriminating against individuals because of their faith or religion. >> this executive order was mean-spirited and unamerican. >> reporter: the president firing back. >> chuck schumer yesterday with fake tears. i'm going to ask him who was his acting coach. >> reporter: also feeling the backlash? mr. trump appointi steve bannon as national security team while they will only talk about issues pertaining to their expertise. >> they are always welcome to attend, 100%. however, if the issue is on pandemic flu, it would be a waste of time to drag the chairman of joint chief staff over. >> reporter: tonight the chairman of joint chief staff backed up the white house, dunn saying he's confident he will be a participant in advising the president on homeland and
national security. president trump will try to turn the page on all of this when he announces his court pick tomorrow night. lester? >> thank you, kristen. meantime, as protests continue to pop up across the country, legal challenges of the executive order came swiftly over the weekend. more were filed today and others over the pipeline. they all say president trump doesn't have the power to do this on his own. our justice correspondent pete williams has all the details. >> reporter: lawyers in cities in four big airports rushed to federal courts over the weekend scoring early victories. judges said anyone with a valid visa couldn't be sent back. today the department of homeland security said everyone detained over the weekend has been admitted and that travelers barred by the order are now being stopped overseas when they try to board u.s.-bound flights. so the court fights ship to a broader challenge that the president is illegally discriminating people based on where they come from, said the
aclu's david cole. >> he's treating people who have gone through all the processes and singling some out on arbitrary and discriminatory grounds and allowing others in. >> reporter: more suits are coming from an american muslim group filed today. >> our country has issued an edict that it prefers one religion over another. >> reporter: and from washington state, home to big tech companies, the governor says it's ripping families apart and hurting the state. >> reporter: we're job creators in the state of washington. i have focused intensely on this and i will not stand silent while the president damages our economy. >> reporter: but some legal experts say stopping the policy may be tough because the courts are reluctant to second guess presidents when it comes to national security and controlling the borders. >> i happen to think this is a terrible mistake. but how i feel about it, or more importantly how a federal judge feels about it, is not the issue. the issue is whether the president can do
it. and historically the answer has been yes. justice department lawyers defended the orders in court over the weekend, but sally yates, a holdover from the obama administration, says not to extend it. it is not doing what's right. >> the president's travel ban has been met with intense reaction here and around the globe as protests continue in cities across the nation as well as overseas. including a gathering in front of the prime minister's residence in london. we want to turn from the crowds to the individuals impacted by this immigration order both home and abroad. including some surprising reactions tonig tonight. in a moment, richard engle reports from iraq. we begin with gabe gutierrez in allentown, pennsylvania. >> reporter: they had big plans for this home, but now it is
emptier than they ever thought possible. >> it feels like a nightmare and it's not going to go away. >> reporter: they bought this house in eastern pennsylvania waiting for the arrival of six relatives in syria who started the immigration process six years ago. this is all ready to go. >> it's all ready to go. >> reporter: but just hours after president trump's executive order, those relatives were turned away at philadelphia's airport. >> two security guards were waiting for them. they took them. they said, are you serious? they said, yes, come with us. >> reporter: the two orthodox christians had visas and were approved for green cards. in the confusion before the administration clarified its executive order. >> they said to them that you have to go back on the next flight. >> reporter: 21-year-old tafiq i
emigrated to the u.s. four years ago. he waited a long time to hug her. >> reporter: they're now back in damascus, their green cards revoked, while they wait for them in the u.s. but not everyone in allentown agrees with the order. he voted for president trump, partly because he vowed to make national security a top priority. >> i wanted him to try to make america safe. >> reporter: that campaign promise hit closer to home than they ever imagined. they both also voted for mr. trump. >> reporter: if the president were watching right now, what would you say to him? >> i would say why. what is your human side to send somebody into a war zone? we're all with him. i definitely want to be in a safe place, but people need us, and we need to be there for them. >> reporter: tonight it's not clear when they'll see their family again. but one thing is certain, their home will be waiting.
gabe gutierrez, nbc news, allentown, pennsylvania. i'm richard engle in iraq with the sharif family who four years ago left everything they knew behind and got on a plane heading for their new home in america. they only got as far as their layover in cairo where a gatekeeper told them they would be detained and deported. what happened when you told everybody you weren't coming? >> that was a terrible moment. i saw their faces. they turned pale and they were about to faint, believe me. >> reporter: the family was traveling on a special visa which they got because faled was a translator for the american embassy. >> after two years of investigation and vetting. >> reporter: even though translators like palad risked their looives working for americans in iraq and some were killed
for it, it's taken a long time for the state department to approve their visas. now they're all on hold because of president trump's orders. >> the american government invited me, gave me visa, told me, come. it's unbelievable. >> reporter: 19-year-old binad already knows he loves america. the state department invited him for an exchange program. one of his favorite memories was going to a white sox game. >> i fell in love with the place with america's welcoming way of life and optimism. >> reporter: convinced they were leaving with their new visas, palad and his wife sold their house and their furniture. their only possessions tonight suitcases by the door. but there's nowhere to go. the state department isn't clarifying what will happen to visas issued to translators like palad. they put their lives on the line for the u.s. but now find themselves waiting and confused. lester?
>> richard engle tonight, thank you. tonight they've stepped up security at certain houses of worship in america after a gunman opened fire in a mosque in canada, killing five people, wounding over a dozen more. now we're learning new details about the suspect. nbc's kevin tibbles is in quebec city. >> reporter: gunfire erupted amidst evening prayers at the islamic cultural center in quebec city. some 50 worshippers were inside as police and paramedics rushed to the scene. six members of the mosque, men ranging in age from 39 to 60, were killed. eight others injured. shot by a lone gunman in what police are calling an act of terror. the suspect is alexandre bissonnette, charged with six counts of murder. tonight police searched his home where his family has lived for decades. neighbors said he was anti-social and kept to himself. one of the victims was a professor at the
university where the shooter went to school. a student who knew bissonnette through the school's chess club described him to nbc news as calm but said he was active on certain anti-immigrant facebook pages. investigators have not yet provided a motive. >> i'm really shocked by all of this. >> reporter: this morning mohammad laberde, vice president of the mosque, was overcome with grief. tonight the eiffel tower going dark for the victims. this happened just after trump's controversial immigration ban sparked international outrage. canadian prime minister justin trudeau who pledged to assist those barred from entering the united states condemning the shooting. adding canadians will not be broken by this violence. lester, tonight in spite of the cold weather, thousands are streaming through the streets of quebec city to attend an outdoor vigil. as security is stepped
up at mosque both here in canada and across the united states. lester? >> kevin tibbles in quebec city for us. thank you. good news tonight from houston. former president george h.w. bush is resting comfortably at home. released after more than two weeks in the hospital, the 92-year-old bush had been receiving treatment for pneumonia, which included a stay in intensive care. his spokesman says he is grateful for all the prayers and kind messages he has received. we'll continue here in a moment. still ahead, scam warning. the new way thieves are trying to rip you off over the phone. a question they're asking victims. why you should hang up immediately if you hear it. also the surprising reason why a big part of the population has been putting off visits to the doctor.
we're back with a warning about a new robocall scam popping up across the country. here's how it works. your phone rings, often from a number that you don't recognize. when you pick up, you're asked a question. instead of replying, authorities say you should hang up immediately. nbc business correspondent jolene kent explains. >> reporter: robocalls are off the hook, some 30 billion last year. now there's a new and especially devious scam. gail worth was packing for a move when her phone rang. >> he said, this is tony moore, can you hear me clearly? and i hung up. i didn't say another word. >> reporter: police now warning criminals
are calling people at random to secretly record them. >> they're extremely annoying. i'm on the national do not call registry and i guess that means nothing these days. >> reporter: the calls imitate professional salespeople. take a listen. >> hi, this is josh from the customer service department. can you hear me okay? >> reporter: your answer "yes" is secretly recorded. later the scammer calls back demanding payment using that recording as proof you agreed to pay for goods or services. on social media, victims are speaking out. saying, just found an unauthorized charge on my card. and they got me, they're super slick. >> we have seen these robocalls get more sophisticated and even mimic things like background noise to convince you as the recipient of the phone call that it's a real person. >> reporter: to protect yourself, the federal trade commission recommends never give out your personal information. and if you receive a prerecorded sales call or if someone asks "can you hear me," hang up. >> this will continue to open up different ways for fraudsters to try and pretend they are us and commit
a dangerous day on the highways of pennsylvania with a deadly pair of pileups. some 50 vehicles were involved in a chain reaction crash during a snow squall about an hour south of harrisburg. one person was killed. another was killed in a separate pileup involving 20 vehicles. this one occurred about an hour and a half northeast of pittsburgh. a new report says around one-third of people are delaying going to the doctor because they have a fear of finding out bad news. like hearing they might have a disease like cancer. the researchers say the problem is particularly worse among single, middle-aged men because married men have their partners to encourage them to get to a doctor.
there is news tonight, a chance of coming to the westminster kennel club. it's almost time for annual dog show. this year three new breeds will compete for best in show. they are the sloughi, an arabian greyhound, the american hairless terrier, relative of the rat terrier, and the pumi, a hungarian breed used for herding. they'll face off starting february 13th in new york. when we come back here tonight, he went from homeless to heavyweight. the college wrestler who's inspiring america. next at 6: is president trump
targeting tech? ===jess/vo=== how silicon valley c-e-o's are responding to his travel ban on immigrants. ===janelle/vo=== and, the life-changing perks an east bay coffee shop is offering to refugees employees. ===janel/next close= ne at 6. sot it's been an we're back now with a story of a young man who has long wrestled with adversity. he's been through tough times, spending many nights without a home or a bed. but today he's thriving thanks in part to a community that embraced him and a coach who says quitting is not an option. harry smith has more in our "inspiring america" report. >> reporter: jaime miranda is a college wrestler. few sports are more demanding, and none are less glamorous. >> pick the pace up! >> reporter: he's a
senior at central college in pella, iowa, my alma mater. coach ben clay -- >> everything in life had been an uphill challenge and he needed a break. >> reporter: when jaime was little his father walked out on him, his mom, and sister in washington state. his mother struggled to provide. >> sometimes we would have a car. we would camp out in that for a while. >> you were homeless? >> yeah. >> reporter: in high school sports kept him off the streets. soon he learned his mother was dying of cancer. >> had a great mother, a hero and a protector. >> reporter: jaime arrived on campus with a hot head and a huge chip on his shoulder. >> i have garbage cans that got their asses kicked because of jaime miranda. >> reporter: jaime learned bs in high school mean little in college. >> how hard has college been? >> tremendously hard. every semester i think about leaving. >> i tell him point blank, quitting is not an option. i'm never going to give up on you, central college is never going to give up on you, nor can you give up on yourself. >> reporter: jaime sought and got help from professors, teammates, and even their parents embraced him too.
>> jaime is the biggest success story of my entire life. jaime means 100 times more to me than winning a national title. >> reporter: he's cocaptain of the team this year. when he graduates in the spring he wants to work with kids like him. >> my message is there's going to be a way out and your life isn't determined by your circumstances. >> reporter: jaime has learned it helps if you have a whole school cheering for you. >> let's go jaime! let's go jaime! >> reporter: harry smith, nbc news, pella, iowa. a final thought before we leave you tonight. there's been a lot of talk about who we are as a country and how we should represent ourselves to the world. for many the ideals inscribed on the statue behind me frame that discussion. for others the threats of a modern era necessitate adapting to a new reality. it is complicated and in many ways forms a new crossroads in america. and we will remain at the intersection of this unfolding story
to report it. that will do it for us on a monday night. i'm lester holt. for all of us at nbc news, thank you for watching and good night from liberty state park in new jersey. finally underway. opin it's been an emotional day. >> right now at 6:00, finally under way. opening arguments begin if the sierra lamar murder trial nearly five years after the morgan hill teenager vanished without a trace. the news at 6:00 starts right now. good monday evening. i'm janelle wang. >> and i'm jessica aguirre. it's been a long and painful wait for family and friends. many tears, many stops and starts for the family. but today the trial finally got under way with prosecutors laying out their case against
antonin garcia torres damien was live in the courtroom today. >> reporter: it was emotional for the family hearing about the details of sierra's disappearan disappearance. there was no smoking gun today, just the prosecutor explaining why he thinks torres killed their daughter. we have a sketch artist inside the courtroom for the duration of the case. in the power point presentation, he described the evidence and the dna he says links torres to sierra. it's all circumstantial evidence and forensic evidence because there is no clear crime scene and sierra's body has never been found. the prosecutor played the 911 call that her mother made to report her disappearance and he warned the jury that the defense