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tv   Nightline  ABC  January 17, 2017 12:37am-1:05am EST

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this is "nightline." >> tonight, words and actions. president-elect trump clashing with congressman john lewis, the civil rights legend who marched alongside dr. martin luther king jr. trump tweeting, lewis is all talk and no action after lewis said he doesn't see trump as a legitimate president and plans to boycott the inauguration. how much of an impact will this have on the big events this week? remembering the dream. the revealing and very personal new recordingingses of the late coretta scott king, wife and advisor to mlk. >> i believe that martin was chosen. i believe that i was chosen. >> the couple's youngest daughter speaking out about her family's private life and her mother's legacy of leadership and sacrifice.
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and fantasy wedding. ♪ fantasy baby >> mariah carey taking the stage in her first performance since new year's eve at a private wedding for the teenaged granddaughter of her russian billionaire. and you won't believe who else performed. but first the "nightline 5." >> my hygienist told me to try a mouthwa mouthwash. i tried crest. >> crest pro health mouthwash provides all these benefits to help you get better dental checkups. go pro with crest mouthwash. >> check up, nailed it. >> cold, hash tag stuffy nose, no sleep, mouth breather. just put on a breathe right strip. it instantly opens your nose up to 38% more than cold medicine alone. shut your mouth and say good night, mouth breathers. breathe ri
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on am martin luther king jr. day, four days before the inauguration of a controversial new president, americans are taking in a bizarre spectacle, a war of words between the president-elect and a legend of the civil rights movement, congressman john lewis. today donald trump met with mlk's son. covering it all, abc's steve osunsami. >> reporter: it's a curious time for a fight between a civil rights icon in the next president of these united states. but tonight as americans spend this holiday remembering the life and work of dr. martin luther king jr., this is where we are. congressman john lewis, a beloved public servant who marched with king, has spent his whole life speaking truth to power and says that's what he's doing now. in miami he underlined his bona fides. yes, i did get in trouble. i stood up. i spoke up. i spoke out. i got arrested.
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>> reporter: this time he's not struggling with jim crow, racist police, or segregated schools. he's taking fire from president-elect donald trump after announcing that he'll boycott the presidential inauguration and explaining why. >> i don't see this president-elect as a legitimate president. i think the russians participated in helping this man get elected. >> reporter: the president-elect is responding saying on twitter that the legendary congressman is all talk talk talk, no action or results, and should spend more time fixing and helping his district which is in horrible shape and crime-infested. now the congressman's supporters are fighting back. new jersey senator cory booker came out with expected praise for the congressman saying that he's faced down some of history's most hateful, now and then his love and truth prevail. first lady michelle obama was not far behind. thinking of dr. king and great leaders like representative john
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lewis who carry on his legacy, may their example be our call to action. the incoming administration says that with all due respect, lewis is wrong. >> we need folks like john lewis and others who i think have been champions of voter rights actually recognize the fact that donald trump was duly elected. and i think it's incredibly disappointing and i think it's irresponsible for people like himself to question the legitimacy of the next united states president. >> reporter: vice president-elect mike pence, who visited the martin luther king memorial today, says he hopes lewis will reconsider and recognize trump was properly elected. >> to use terms like this is not a legitimate president, it's just deeply disappointing to me. and i hope he reconsiders it. >> reporter: but here's the thing. the president-elect has been accused of doing this exact same thing for years. publicly questioning whether
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president obama was even born in this country and whether he had a right to be president at all. >> he could have been born in kenya, some people think indonesia. why doesn't he show the birth certificate? >> you have to understand how strongly it was felt in the african-american community that donald trump was doing was questioning whether a black man could be a legitimate president. >> reporter: that issue alone is seen as a major offense to many black americans, who more than any other group voted for the president-elect's competition, fighting with john lewis doesn't help outreach. >> we're going to rebuild our inner cities because our african-american communities are absolutely in the worst shape that they've ever been in before. ever, ever, ever. >> reporter: in lewis' district, which covers much of metro atlanta, the headline in the paper shares the feeling that trump is wrong about the city. >> there are pockets of crime in every city. but to say it's very bad here?
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it's not. >> we aren't crime ridden or anything like that, we are a beautiful city of people. >> does he owe this city an apology? >> of course he does, he owes the lewis family an apology, not just the city. >> reporter: the president-elect wrote that lewis' congressional district is naturaling apart. but this is home to delta, coke cola, the third-largest concentration of fortune 500 companies in america. donald trump really had taken the time to take a look at john lewis' district, there's no way you come out of that thinking that it's falling apart or that it's crime infested. >> reporter: president-elect trump was planning to tour the new smithsonian museum of african-american heritage today where congressman lewis is featured in some of the exhibits. but he canceled due to unspecified scheduling issues. instead he spoke about the holiday on facebook saying that the reverend dr. martin luther king jr. lifted up the conscience of our nation, a towering leader in his day and a lasting inspiration for all generations to follow. trump had a meeting today with
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martin luther king iii. who told abc's tom llamas it's time to make peace with the incoming administration. >> were you offended by the president-elect's tweet that representative lewis is all talk and no action? >> i think in the heat of emotion a lot of things get said on both sides. and i think that at some point -- i am, as john lewis and many others are, a bridge builder. the goal is to bring america together. >> reporter: congressman lewis has been here before under similar circumstances. he sat out the inauguration of president george w. bush. with four days left before the inauguration, at least 35 democrat lawmakers have come out saying they won't be participating on friday. some of them pointing to the fight with john lewis as their reason. >> i decided not to attend on wednesday after the president-elect's press conference. i was really shocked the president attacked john lewis in such a way, particularly on martin luther king weekend. >> reporter: lewis has been called the conscience of the
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u.s. congress, a living link to martin luther king jr. and he's earned respect from both sides of the aisle. >> john lewis is a hero. he not only personally suffered for the rights of african-americans and really all americans, but he has then taken his passion into public service and spent decades working to make america a better place. >> reporter: even the president-elect has called him a legendary civil rights leader. they're seen here together at the 45th anniversary of the march on selma. at the 50th anniversary in 2015, congressman lewis joined thousands in a symbolic march across the edmund pettus bridge once more. >> we know the march is not yet over. we know the race is not yet won. >> reporter: this is where john lewis and others marching for voting rights were beaten down on bloody sunday by alabama police in 1965. >> get out there and push and pull until we redeem the soul of
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america. >> reporter: he still has the scars from the beating, the wounds marked down in history and featured in the movie "selma." >> for donald trump to suggest that john lewis is someone who's all talk and no action just once again sort of shows you how little he actually knows about people outside of his bubble. >> reporter: today at a king holiday event in miami, the congressman said no words about the president-elect, speaking instead on how important it is to inspire future leaders. >> i said to you as young men, the future leaders of this state, the future leaders of this nation, the future leaders of the world, we must never, ever hate. the way of love is the better way. >> reporter: it's the righteousness of his past that is the source of his strength. last year after the orlando nightclub killings, lewis defied the rules and led a sit-in on
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the house floor. >> what is the tipping point? >> reporter: protesting what he said was the lack of action over gun control. >> never give in. stand up. speak up. when you see something that is not right, not fair, not just, you have a moral obligation to do something, to say something, and not be quiet. >> reporter: promising to be disobedient. for "nightline," i'm steve osunsami in atlanta. next, the woman who was right there with martin luther king jr. during his struggles and triumphs. his late wife, the exclusive and very personal new recordings surfacing tonight. i sure had a lot to think about. what about the people i care about? ...including this little girl. and what if this happened again? i was given warfarin in the hospital, but wondered, was this the best treatment for me? so i asked my doctor. and he recommended eliquis.
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revealing and exclusive new recordings tonight of the late coretta scott king, wife and close advisor to dr. martin luther king jr. abc's robin roberts sits down with their daughter berneice. >> i have a dream. >> reporter: some of the most revered words in american history. >> i have a dream. that one day this nation will rise up, live out the true meaning of its creed. we hold these truths to be self-evident. that all men are created equal. >> reporter: martin luther king jr.'s "i have a dream" speech heralding his vision of racial justice and equality in america. cementing his place in history. but coretta scott king, wife of the man we honor today, was herself crucial to the struggle for civil rights.
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>> she was a very powerful woman. >> reporter: dr. bernice king is the youngest of the couple's four children. >> she used to say, came from great stock. and martin didn't make her. when they met, she was prepared. >> reporter: in newly released audiotapes, mrs. king made it clear from the beginning of their marriage that she would be a force to be reckoned with. listen closely to this exclusive recording as mrs. king recalls a conversation she had with her husband. >> i said, well you know, i love being your wife and the mother of your children, but if that was all that i did, i would go crazy. >> reporter: the tapes of the basis of her posthumously released memoir "my life, my love, my legacy." your father wrote this about your mother. a wife could either make or break a husband. my wife was always stronger than i was through the struggle. in the darkest moments, she always brought the light of hope. was that your mom? >> in those crisis moments, in
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those very difficult, challenging times, she rose to an occasion. she could carry you. she could carry many people. >> i believe that martin was chosen, i believe that i was chosen. and i say to the kids, this family was chosen as well. >> reporter: mrs. king believed in their purpose as leaders of the civil rights movement. >> she thought she was as destined as him. >> exactly. >> to do good things, great things. >> yes. >> and not because she was his wife. >> nonviolence is the most powerful force that we have for the counteracting of hatred, bitterness, and violence which has infested our society. >> and i honestly believe in a different kind of way she did greater things. probably because she lived longer. but also because she had the insight to see who he really was. >> reporter: out of the spotlight, the kings were like any other young couple.
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she had one simple wish. >> i told him, every woman wants a house. that's all i need is a house. as long as i have my own house, i'm fine. your father was like, no, because he didn't want to think it was benefitting from the movement. your mom was like, i want a house! and she got that. so it tells you a little bit about her tenacity. >> yes, definitely. it also came out of her feeling and sensing that he was not going to be there long. and if something happens, you know, what are we going to have? >> reporter: mrs. king's tenacity and strength were put to the test in 1956 when the house they were living in was bombed. >> think about this. daddy was the leader but mother was the one who first experienced the manifestation of a threat. she was in the home when it was bombed, not him. >> and her baby girl. >> and the baby girl. like god designed it this way. because she had to first come to
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a resolve, i'm willing to risk the loss of my own life, before even him. >> reporter: mrs. king says their marriage was further tested in 1964 when fbi tapes claimed to expose her husband's alleged infidelities, although mrs. king denied any truth to the rumors. >> all this stuff is fabricated. i think that was martin's great concern that something could happen like that. because see, my husband was one of the most moral persons that i have ever known. at every level. personally as well as publicly. i mean, he struggled to make sure that he was worthy of the respect and the love that people had for him. >> she said, i know my husband. and if he were having an affair, i would know. >> reporter: the couple had been married for almost 15 years when, on april 4th, 1968, dr. king was assassinated at the lorraine motel in memphis,
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tennessee. >> a sniper's bullet cut down dr. king as he stood on a hotel balcony in memphis. >> most of you know how i feel at this time. and the most important thing that is my husband's work will be carried forward. >> reporter: after his death, mrs. king kept her late husband's memory alive for their children. >> you know, my mother invoked him every chance she got in our home. you know, if we're at the dinner table, breakfast table, in conversation, she would always say, "your father." your father would say. your father. your father said this. your father. >> reporter: and worked tirelessly to ensure his place in history. >> all right-thinking americans are joined in spirit with us this day as the highest recognition which this nation gives is bestowed upon martin luther king jr. >> she was the architect of this king legacy. what we know of my father really
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came from her resilience, her determination, her faith, her courage. >> reporter: here at the king center in atlanta, dr. bernice king discussed her hope for maintaining her parents' legacy of peace and understanding. how do we use what your mother and father fought so hard for to move forward? >> his quote and her quote. his quote is, people hate each other because they fear each other and they fear each other because they don't know each other, and they don't know each other because they're not communicating, they don't communicate because they're not connected. on the other hand my mother said, struggle is a never-ending process, freedom is never really won, you earn it and win it in every generation. she would help us understand that we have all been called to this freedom struggle in the world. in these times, we have to be unrelenting in ensuring that certain freedoms are not lost and that as we do it, you think
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about my father's quote, we have to find a way, a common ground that we can move forward in. >> reporter: for "nightline," i'm robin roberts in atlanta. next, after a gloriously disastrous new year's eve performance of "we belong together," mariah carey is back at the mike. you won't believe where she showed and up how much she reportedly got paid.
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trulia. the house is only half of it. finally, mariah carey's first performance since her new year's debacle. ♪ we didn't have a soundtrack for this years baby ♪ >> millions rang in the new year watching mariah carey's epic mishap. ♪ we can't get it >> now the superstar is reportedly raking in millions performing for a much smaller crowd. captured on instagram singing at the

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