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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  June 21, 2017 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT

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begin. >> thanks, that's going to do it for now. as a reminder, lester holt is next with "nightly news. >> we'll be back here at 6:00. tonight, airport attack. an officer stabbed inside the terminal. now the fbi's investigating it as a terrorist incident on american soil. we have late details. states of emergency. a tropical storm turns deadly as up to a foot of rain overwhelms the gulf coast. a powerful system steaming toward landfall. what's in the bill? high drama and healthcare for millions hanging in the balance. we could be just hours away from finding out what senate republicans have planned to replace obamacare. the textalyzer. as distracted driving crashes soar, a controversial new way police could start analyzing your phone after an accident. is it an invasion of privacy? and a billion dollar deal. a surprise
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announcement tonight from george clooney. "nightly news" begins right now. from nbc news world headquarters in new york, this is nbc "nightly news" with lester holt. good evening. to our viewers in the west, great to have you with us on this wednesday night. after london, paris, brussels, tonight you can add flint, michigan, as the latest target of terror. the fbi is calling the vicious knife attack on a police officer at flint's bishop international airport this morning an act of terror. authorities say his attacker is a canadian man who stabbed the officer in the neck, declaring god is great in arabic and making references to overseas conflicts. the wounded officer is recovering tonight as authorities on both sides of the border urgently try to learn more about the accused attacker. nbc's blake mccoy has late details now from flint. >> second floor inside the terminal. we've got an officer down. >> reporter: urgent calls for help this morning at bishop
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airport in flint, michigan, after a man stabbed an airport police officer. >> it sounds like a stabbing through the neck. >> reporter: everyone was evacuated from the airport, which was quickly shut down. >> we're investigating this incident today that happened at about 9:45 this morning as an act of terrorism. >> reporter: officials say 50-year-old amore ftouhy, a canadian, entered the united states on june 16th. he made his way to flint, michigan, this morning, where he targeted airport security officer lieutenant jeff neville. >> he was carrying baggage. he went into a rest room. he spent a little time in the rest room, dropped both bags and came out, pulled out a knife, yelled allahu akbar and stabbed lieutenant neville in the neck. >> reporter: neville was rushed to the hospital in critical condition. tonight he is improving. >> lieutenant neville never stopped fighting, never stopped fighting until i handcuffed this person. >> reporter: the
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incident took place in terminal two outside the secure part of the terminal. >> and there were police officers, state cops, airport authority lining up. >> reporter: security was increased across the city. stabbings have become an increasingly common form of terror attack. five in the u.s. in just the past three years. this one comes after a wave of european terror attacks, three in three days, following a series of deadly attacks this year. >> this sort of attack really epitomizes the small scale nature of the threat we have here. individuals may be radicalized, but we've not yet seen the larger networks that threaten western europe. >> reporter: the fbi is calling this a lone wolf attacker. and our sources tell us his name was not in any fbi databases. he apparently made reference to killings in syria, iraq and afghanistan after stabbing that officer. lester? >> blake mccoy in michigan this evening, thank you. turning now to another major story we're following, the secrecy surrounding the senate republicans' healthcare plan. with coverage for
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millions at stake and the clock ticking for a vote, details are finally expected to be released tomorrow. but democrats are turning up the pressure, hoping to peel away the three gop votes they need to defeat it. nbc news capitol hill correspondent kasie hunt has the latest. >> reporter: outside the capitol today democrats trying to stand in the way of the gop plan to repeal and replace obamacare. >> healthcare's a right not a privilege. >> reporter: but there's not much that they or the pint-sized superheroes they brought in to help draw attention can do to stop it. with just nine days before the senate is expected to vote and leave for the july 4th holiday, no public sign of what's in the bill. >> if i don't get to read it, i don't vote for it. if i don't get to study it, i don't vote for it. >> reporter: washington lobbyists
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are seeing early drafts, but republican senators say they won't see the full bill until around breakfast time tomorrow. from there, where it goes comes down to a handful of republicans. it won't pass if only three vote no. robert portman of ohio is at the center of a critical piece of the negotiations, how to help people struggling with opioid addiction. >> some people are getting treatment currently under expanded medicaid in particular, which is a change in the affordable care act, might not continue to get that treatment. >> reporter: a potential compromise, creating a separate fund to help clinics like the compdrug treatment center back in his home state. 75% of their patients are on medicaid. >> the individuals who are receiving care paid for by medicaid are individuals who have no other choice. that is what they need to get back on their feet. >> reporter: whether that help comes could depend on fiscal conservatives like ted cruz who have pushed for even deeper cuts to medicaid than were in the house bill, though they'll likely take longer to go into effect. >> if it fails to solve the problem, then it's not going to pass. it's not going to get the votes that it needs to pass. >> reporter: in gettysburg, pennsylvania, people like graham bigby who voted for president trump. >> i think they're
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hiding away and not allowing the ideas to come forth that they have. let it be out there. >> reporter: millions still wondering what it means for them. top white house officials including steve bannon are on the hill tonight trying to sell this bill while across the country obamacare is showing signs of strain. the major insurer anthem announcing today it's pulling out of insurance exchanges in indiana and wisconsin. lester? >> kasie hunt at the capitol tonight, thanks. now to states of emergency along the gulf coast as tropical storm cindy takes aim, expected to make landfall overnight near the texas/louisiana border. both of those states already being lashed by high winds and torrential rain. it's a system that's turned deadly. we get details now from nbc's kerry sanders in the storm zone. >> reporter: tonight tropical storm cindy triggering water spouts and kicking up surf in mississippi, in louisiana causing dangerous flash floods and in alabama claiming the life of a 10-year-old boy who was hit by debris swept up in a huge wave. >> we have approximately a
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10-year-old male in the water approximately 20 minutes. >> pray for this family. this is a tragic event, a tragic day. >> reporter: from the florida panhandle west to texas, pockets of damage. up to a foot of rain expected in parts of the gulf coast, and tonight in alabama and louisiana, states of emergency. >> so we cannot stress enough the importance of avoiding high water. >> reporter: with winds in excess of 50 miles per hour, lake pontchartrain hammered today. we're not used to seeing this. >> not that high. >> reporter: since hurricane katrina devastated new orleans in 2005, the federal government has spent more than $14 billion on an intricate system to prevent flooding again, including new levees, miles of steel concrete flood walls up to 28 feet tall. and pumping stations that can remove up to 12 inches of rain in a 24-hour period. >> but there's no pumping system that can catch huge amounts of water all at one time.
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>> reporter: so you're watching this -- >> we're watching this really, really carefully. >> reporter: heavy rain and flash flood watches across the country continue into thursday as tropical storm cindy makes landfall tomorrow morning. for many a race against mother nature, but in some neighborhoods already a losing battle. erosion, as you can see here on dauphin island in alabama is already extensive. tropical storm cindy is expected to keep up this pace or worse including the threat of tornadoes until tomorrow morning. lester? >> kerry sanders, thank you. now to the stunning fall of one of the fastest rising ceos in the world, driven out as the chief executive at uber, the wildly popular company that millions use to grab a ride. the company reeling from a series of embarrassing scandals. nbc news business correspondent jo ling kent has details for us. >> reporter: travis kalanick, founder and ceo of ride sharing giant uber suddenly resigning late tuesday after intense pressure from five major investors. in a statement, kalanick said i have accepted the
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investors' request to step aside so uber can go back to building rather than be distracted with another fight. kalanick forced out so the company could move on after months of allegations sparked by former engineer susan fowler of sexual harassment, bull egg and inappropriate workplace behavior. kalanick is an aggressive entrepreneur known for breaking rules. that hard charging style also explains how he built a company that revolutionized transportation. >> we're changing the way cities work. >> reporter: since its founding eight years ago uber has expanded into 80 countries serving 40 million riders in a month. a recent report predicts by 2030 people will use ride sharing for one in every four car trips. >> at this point in 2017 people are really asking themselves do i even need a car. >> reporter: but uber has already lost market share to arch rival lyft. forcing out kalanick is seen as a move to keep drivers and usingers from defecting. >> this is wake-up call for uber, this is a wake-up call for silicon valley and the
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world that we need to have economies that support positive corporate cultures. >> reporter: who will take over the driver's seat? one reported choice, facebook ceo sheryl sandberg. but word is she's staying put. as kalanick is forced to take the exit ramp, uber searching for a new road ahead. jo ling kent, nbc news, los angeles. in virginia today, thousands of people turned out for the funeral of a young woman who was killed over the weekend after leaving a mosque with friends. police say it was a result of road rage, but prosecutors say they can't rule out a hate crime. it's a deadly incident that's touched a nerve across the country. and we get details from our justice correspondent pete williams. >> reporter: as many as 5,000 members of suburban washington, d.c.'s muslim community turned out for the funeral, some walking more than a mile to get there, to remember nabra hassanen, a 17-year-old who was beat to death sunday, and to express their solidarity.
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>> it's a really hard time for the people here. this could have easily happened to anyone, either male or female. >> reporter: it began sunday morning in suburban virginia when a driver confronted a group of muslim teens on their way to a mosque for ramadan services. most fled, but she was caught. police arrested a 22-year-old construction worker, darwin martinez torres. they say it appeared to be the result of an incident of road rage. but her father says because she was wearing muslim dress he believes she was targeted because of her religion. >> why you kill my daughter? for what? we don't do anything to him. >> reporter: authorities originally appeared to discount a hate crime. prosecutors now say they cannot rule out pursuing hate crime charges, but they say no evidence so far points in that direction. they're also looking at whether she was sexually assaulted before her body was
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left at a lake. even so, her death has prompted rallies and demonstrations in other cities calling for a thorough investigation, many holding banners that say justice for nabra. back at today's funeral, mourners say they support the family and everyone wants answers. >> they're grieving, and you know, they want to make sure that every possible motive is investigated whether it's hate crime, whether it's even the smallest things. >> reporter: as her friends say good-bye to someone they say liked everybody. pete williams, nbc news, washington. let's talk now about the blame game under way among democrats tonight left soul searching after a disappointing defeat in georgia. a house special election they had high hopes of winning only to see their hopes dashed again. the latest in a string of defeats. some pointing the finger at house democratic leader nancy pelosi. we get more from nbc's kristen welker. >> reporter: republicans breathing a collective sigh of relief after gop candidate karen handel beat democrat jon ossoff winning a reliably red district in georgia, fending off a challenge to president trump. >> and a special thanks to the
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president of the united states of america. >> reporter: mr. trump wasted no time taking a victory lap, tweeting, democrats would do much better as a party if they got together with republicans on healthcare, tax cuts, security. the question now, is georgia a sign democrats are in disarray after spending a record amount on that race and losing four out of four recent special elections to republicans. today some democrats acknowledging their anti-trump resistance has fallen flat. >> i think candidates matter, and we need to do better in recruitment. >> reporter: some democrats also taking aim at leadership after the gop consistently linked the democratic challenger in georgia to house minority leader nancy pelosi in ads, undercutting ossoff's message of change. >> as long as nancy pelosi is the leader of the democratic party, it's going to be very difficult to win. >> reporter: pelosi's spokesperson not responding to those calls for her to go and instead said republicans voters don't get to select the leaders of the democratic party. still, republicans may
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have their own reasons to worry. the races they've won so far are gop strongholds and democrats are outperforming their 2016 numbers. >> they have to have a message that contrasts with what republicans want to do, not just say we're anti-trump. >> reporter: all underscoring democrats still haven't found their trump card. kristen welker, nbc news, the white house. we've got good news to report about congressman steve scalise who was critically injured a week ago by a gunman targeting congressional republicans' baseball practice. scalise has now been upgraded to fair condition and ready to begin rehabilitation according to the hospital. and count music superstar bono among the many rooting for his recovery. the u2 frontman stopped by scalise's office to sign a get well card. there's a lot more to tell you about tonight. still ahead, the controversial new device police can use to catch people texting and driving, but does it violate your privacy? also the new health scare for britain's royals.
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and the queen's fashion statement that has a lot of folks talking.
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we're back with the controversial new way police can use for the dangers of texting and driving. it's called the textalyzer. police plug it right into your phone to see if you were texting, calling or using apps. but privacy advocates say it invades your rights. nbc news national investigative correspondent jeff rossen shows how it works in tonight's "rossen reports". >> reporter: watch this head-on collision caught on camera in massachusetts. police say the driver admitted she was texting when she slammed into this jeep. and this driver in florida swerving across the road before hitting a tree and flipping over, admitting to police he was using his phone. now, this new device called the textalyzer is aiming to crack down, recording your every click, tap or
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swipe. it would even know what apps you were using. police officers could download the data right on the spot. okay. here we go. to see how it works, i start driving in a closed parking lot. first up, i send a message on whatsapp. how are you? i check out facebook. one of my favorites. i even answer a call. hello? and send a text message, too. hi. how is it going? sent. i pull over, and we plug in the textalyzer. >> phone data is being analyzed. >> reporter: all right. >> i can see that you opened whatsapp at 2:45, you received an incoming call at 2:59 and you sent an sms at 3:00. >> reporter: so police can pinpoint down to you were driving then and that was a minute before the accident? >> yes, that's very important. >> reporter: but privacy advocates say it's just too intrusive.
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>> there's no guarantee when you hand your cell phone over to a police officer that that officer won't be looking at or copying all kinds of personal data about you. >> we talked to the critics we explain we're not getting anything that was said in the text or who it was said to, just the touches and swipes. >> reporter: police can't use it yet, but lawmakers in several states want to pass legislation to allow the textalyzer, hitting you with penalties if you refuse to give up your phone. jeff rossen, nbc news, parsippany, new jersey. we're back in a moment with a fantastic voyage. come sail away on a ship with passengers who are inspiring america.
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in london tonight, the queen's husband, prince philip, is spending the night at the hospital. the palace says the 96-year-old duke of edinburgh is being treated for an infection though he's said to be in good
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spirits. but it meant he did not accompany the queen to her speech to parliament where she laid out the legislative agenda, and a lot of speculation on social media about a possible message of solidarity in a fashion statement. folks couldn't help but notice her hat looks a lot like the flag of the european union as britain prepares for brexit, a painful divorce from its european neighbors. now to tonight's "inspiring america" report. it's a great time of year to get out there on the open water, if you get a chance. for people with disabilities, adventuring in the high seas can be difficult. but now, as our kristen dahlgren tells us, their ship has come in. >> reporter: the wind in his hair, sun, salty air. sensations jack gerard thought were lost to him forever. >> i just kind of remember being face down in the water and not being able to move. >> reporter: the 19-year-old paralyzed by a powerful wave last summer. getting back on the water seemed impossible until a sailboat called "impossible dream" came to boston harbor with the historic tall ships.
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>> it's like i'm not really worried about the chair. i'm just kind of out on the water doing my thing. >> reporter: a 60-foot racing catamaran built to be sailed by people with disabilities, wide ramping, elevators and a wheel right at wheelchair level. >> that's what "the impossible dream" does. it doesn't close you out. >> reporter: debra melon knows what it's like to be left out. a car accident left her without the use of her legs, but when she's out on the water, all that melts away. so she found the perfect boat so everyone can feel freedom and independence. >> see those boats in front of it? >> you want them to know that there is hope and there is a future. and it's not all dark. >> reporter: the "impossible dream" cruises the east coast giving thousands the chance to chart a new course. >> water is healing. water is freeing. >> reporter: for debra, that couldn't be more true. in a way the sailboat saved her. >> through this, i have discovered the beauty of giving. >> reporter: now she dreams of a bigger
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boat to help more people, and as she sees here every day, nothing is impossible. kristen dahlgren, nbc news, boston. when we come back, toast of the town. why actor george clooney and friends have a billion reasons to raise a glass tonight. area for days... and now, it )s
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turned deadly. ===jess take vo=== plus, san francisco protesters lying in the street. what this motorcyclist said before he revved his engine and scattered the crowd. ===next close=== next. finally tonight, he's been a new dad for all of two weeks, but now actor george clooney has a whole new reason to celebrate. he just struck a deal to sell his casamigos tequila brand for as much as a billion dollars along with partners that include randy gerber, cindy crawford's husband. casamigos was first created as a private brand before exploding in popularity with the public. a billion bucks, that will buy a whole lot of margaritas.
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we appreciate you spending part of your evening with us. that's "nightly news" for this wednesday night. i'm lester holt. for all of us at nbc news, thank you for watching and good night. the heat wave turns dead we )re tracking another day of triple digit temperatures. ==jess/2-s right now at 6:00, heat wave turns deadly. another day of triple digit temperatures. the news at 6:0 oc0 starts righ now. >> i'm jessica augeri. >> i'm raj mathai. three people in santa colllara county have died because of the heat. >> >> we're under a flex alert to keep the stress off the power gr grid. >> and spare the air tomorrow. the temperatures will create unhealthy conditions.
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tomorrow we'll have multiple reports. let's start with jeff ra narcotwhat do you see coming next? >> i still see things remaining hot as we head into tomorrow's forecast. the big problem we have in terms of why we're not seeing it any cooler is the fact that high pressure is reaching its maximum strength across california combining with hot air moving in from the desert southwest. so conditions today reached up as high as 107 degrees in brentwood and 105 in livermore and 104 in pleasantopleasanton. i want to stress as we push into thursday's temperature and contra costa and alameda county and san ramon and livermore. brentwood and these areas you drink plenty of water and stay hydrated. i'm tracking with cool air arrives. it's goo


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