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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  January 30, 2017 7:00pm-7:30pm EST

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tonight, shock waves from president trump's immigration ban. triggering days of mass demonstrations. dramatic fights for refugees trapped in airports. a legal battle raging across the country and around the world. mosque massacre. six dead, more than a dozen wounded as a gunman opens fire in canada. now houses of worship heren america under heavy security. devious phone scam. criminals calling unsuspecting strangers to secretly record them, then using their own words to trick them into paying money they don't owe. tonight, beware. to the mat. a young man who's wrestled with life's adversities saved by a coach who just wouldn't give up. "nightly news" begins right now.
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good evening. behind me the statue of liberty which for nearly 130 years has symbolized the welcome arms of a country of immigrants. but tonight she also stands as a symbolic flashpoint in a country in the midst of soul searching over the limits of its generosity in an age of international terrorism. this evening protesters joined by some members of congress have gathered outside the supreme court in washington. following a weekend of fierce and emotional reaction and confusion over president trump's temporary ban on travel to the united states by citizens of seven predominantly muslim countries. the white house calls it a necessary step to protect americans at home from threats from abroad. critics call it a solution in search of a problem.
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an unconstitutional and thinly disguised ban on muslims. tonight we'll hear from both sides. we begin with white house correspondent kristen welker. >> reporter: president trump defiant and digging in today amid a mounting firestorm over his travel ban. >> we actually had a very good day yesterday in terms of homeland security. >> reporter: the president aiming to put a positive spin on a weekend of chaos and outrage. protests erupted at airports all across the country as more than 100 people were detained, including an iraqi who served in the u.s. military mission in iraq, and a 5-year-old american boy separated from his iranian mother for hours. today the white house calling it a small inconvenience in the name of safety. and today tensions mounted as a memo circulated throughout the foreign service slamming the ban. "such a policy runs counter to core american values of nondiscrimination." that prompted the white house to unleash this threat.
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problem with it? i think they should either 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 from seven muslim majority countries for 90 days and stops all refugees from 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 areas of concern but never banned travel. today a spokesperson for former president obama said he is heartened by the protesters and insisted the president fundamenta
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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 fueling a backlash, mr. trump appointing his chief strategist steve bannon to his national security team. while top-ranking intelligence and military officials will attend only when discussing issues pertaining to their responsibilities and expertise. >> on issues of homeland security and domestic policy, 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 the joint chiefs of staff over. >> tonight the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff backed up the white house, general dunford saying he's confident he will be a full participant in advising the president on national and homeland security. president trump will try to turn p
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announces his supreme court pick tomorrow night. lester? >> kristen welker at the white house, thank you. meantime, as the protests continue to pop up across the country, legal challenges of the executive order came swiftly over the weekend. more were filed today and still others are in 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 near four big airports rushed to federal courts over the weekend, scoring early victories. judges said anyone with a valid visa could not 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 against people based on where they come from, says aclu's david cole.
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similarly situated, who have gone through all the processes, and then singling some out on arbitrary and discriminatory grounds and allowing others in. >> reporter: and more suits are coming from a muslim-american 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. >> we're job creators in the state of washington. i have focused intensely on this. and i will not stand silent while a 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 ansr
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>> reporter: justice department lawyers defended the orders in court over the weekend but tonight the acting attorney general, sally yates, a holdover from the obama administration, tells them to stop defending it. she says the order is not consistent with justice or doing what's right. lester? >> pete williams in washington, thank you. the president's travel ban has been met with intense reaction, both here and around the globe. as protests continue today 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 tonight. in a moment, richard engel reports from iraq. but we begin with nbc's gabe gutierrez in allentown, pennsylvania.
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here -- >> reporter: gasan and sarmat had big plans for this home. now it is emptier than they thought possible. >> it feels like it's a nightmare and i'm going to wake up and it's all going to go away. >> reporter: they bought and furnished this house in allentown, pennsylvania, awaiting the arrival of six relatives from syria who they say had started the immigration process 13 years ago. >> this was ready to go. >> this is all ready to go. as you can see. the beds, the sheets, the pillows. >> reporter: saturday morning, 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 syrians? they said yes. they said, come with us. >> reporter: gasan's two brothers and their families, orthodox christians, had visas and were approved for green cards. >> he's waiting to come here. >> reporter: 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 emigrated to the u.s. three years ago. he'd been waiting for his mother to join him. >> it was on our way from
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seeing her -- >> reporter: she and the others are now back in damascus, their visas revoked, along the family's lawyers mount a legal challenge in the u.s. but not everyone in allentown's syrian community disagrees with the president. reverend anthony sabat, an immigrant himself, voted for mr. trump partly because of his promise to make national security a top priority. >> i admire a president that protects his people. and try to make america safe. >> reporter: for the family, that campaign promise has hit closer to home than they ever imagined. they both also voted for mr. trump. >> if the president were watching right now, what would you say to him? >> i would say, why? where's your human side to send somebody into a war zone? i understand he wants to make america safe. we're all on with this. 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.
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allentown, pennsylvania. i'm richard engel in erbil, iraq, with the sharif family who four days 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 gate agent told fuad he and his family would be detained and deported. >> what happened when you told everybody, we're not going? >> wow, that was a terrible moment, believe me, believe me, richard. when 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 she got because of fuad was a translator for the u.s. government during the iraq war. he showed it to me. >> it's issued by u.s. embassy in baghdad. after two years of investigation and vetting. >> reporter: even though translators like fuad risked their lives working for americans in iraq and some were killed for it, it's taken a long time for the u.s. state department to approve th
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now they're all on hold because of president trump's orders. >> american government invited me. gave me visa. told me, come, you have helped us in the past. it's unbelievable. >> reporter: 19-year-old binyad 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 the mindset, american welcoming way of life and their optimism. >> reporter: convinced they were leaving with their new visas, fuad and his wife quit their jobs, sold their house and furniture. their only possessions left are tonight in suitcases by the door. but there's nowhere to go. the state department isn't clarifying what will happen with visas issued to translators like fuad. they put their lives on the line for the u.s., but now find themselves waiting and confused. lester? >> richard engel tonight, thank you. th e
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worship here in america after a gunman opened fire inside 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. today police searched his home where bissonnette's family has lived for decades. neighbors say he was anti-social and kept to himself. one of the victims was a
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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 claimed 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 labadine, vice president of the mosque, was overcome with grief. tonight the eiffel tower going dark in tribute to the victims. the attack comes just days after president trump's controversial immigration ban sparked international outrage. canadian prime minister justin trudeau, who pledged to assist those barred from entering the united states, condemned sunday's shooting. >> our sense of unity -- >> reporter: adding, "canadians will not be broken by this violence." 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 mosques both here in canada and across the united states.
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lester? >> kevin tibbles in quebec city, thank you. good news 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. the 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. utting off visits to
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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.
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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
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commit fraud that will eventually hit our pocketbooks. >> reporter: a warning for all americans to be wary of who's on the other end of the line. jolene kent, nbc news, washington. we're back in a moment with a big announcement that has a lot of dog owners very excited. e plaque psoriasis isn't it time to let the real you shine through? introducing otezla, apremilast. otezla is not an injection, or a cream. it's a pill that treats plaque psoriasis differently. some people who took otezla saw 75% clearer skin after 4 months. and otezla's prescribing information has no requirement for routine lab monitoring. don't take otezla if you are allergic to any of its ingredients. otezla may increase the risk of depression. tell your doctor if you have a history of depression or suicidal thoughts, or if these feelings develop. some people taking otezla reported weight loss. your doctor should monitor your weight and may stop treatment.
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a dangerous day on the 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
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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. well, a 103 yeah, 103. well, let me ask you guys. how long did it take you two to save that? a long time. then it's a fortune. well, i'm sure you talk to people all the time who think $100k is just pocket change. right now we're just talking to you. i told you we had a fortune. yes, you did.
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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
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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, teamma a
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>> 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 intersec o
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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.
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lights, camera, access. >> "stranger things". >> it was the strangest thing. >> it may have been the most ex sub rant s.a.g. awards ever. i'm liz hernandez. but with winona, things got stranger up on ste.


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