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tv   CBS Evening News With Norah O Donnell  CBS  October 7, 2019 6:30pm-7:00pm PDT

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♪ ♪ captioning sponsored by cbs >> o'donnell: tonight the impeachment battle intensifies. more subpoenas for the administration and the extreme measures congress is condering to protect the whistleblower's identity. also tonight, democrats and republicans are blasting the president's decision to move u.s. troops out of syria. could that order help isis make a comeback? a diplomat's wife wanted for killing a teenager in a car crash in britain flies home to the u.s. now the prime minister wants her back to face charges. why did it back down after china complained about a tweet in support of democracy? nothing stops jimmy carter, not even 14 stitches and a black eye
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can keep the former president down. and hollywood history. how an actor-turned mogul is revolutionizing the film industry. this is the "cbs evening news" with norah o'donnell, reporting tonight from washington. o o'donnell: good evening. and thank you so much for joining us. we are going to begin with breaking news. in a city which leaks like a broken faucet, house democrats are considering extreme measures to protect the identity of a whistleblower who raised alarms about president trump possibly pressuring ukraine to investigate joe biden and his son. ls are also learning there is a second whistleblower, and house democrats today issued more subpoenas, this time to the pentagon, demanding to know why military aid to ukraine was held up. major garrett leads off our coverage tonight.
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>> this is a scam, and the people are wise to it. >> reporter: president trump again denounced the house impeachment inquiry which threatens to snare more parts of his administration. >> it's lucky i'm the president. becuaese i sort of thrive on it. >> reporter: a second whistleblower has emerged, this one, according to lawyers, with direct knowledge of president trump's phone call with ukraine's president. the house intelligence committee is considering extreme measures to protect the first whistleblower's identity, such as interviewing the person behind a curtain and obscuring his or her voice. democrat raja krishnamoorthi. >> we have to take all precautions, because we cannot burn his or her identity. >> reporter: the house intelligence committee, led by california democrat adam schiff, today subpoenaed documents from the pentagon and office of management and budget, in part to learn the reasons behind the white house's decision to withhold critical military assistance to ukraine. white house critics accuse mr.
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trump of holding back that aid to pressure the new ukrainian government to launch an investigation into former vice ceesident joe biden's son hunter. later this week trump donor and ambassador to the european union gordon sondland will testify before the house, as will the president's former ambassador to ukraine, masha yovanovitch. she was abruptly dismissed from yr post earlier this year. >> i heard very, very bad things about her for a long period of vme. not good. >> o'donnell: major joins us ajom the white house. and major, with the exception of ohandful of lawmakers, republicans appear to be sticking by the president. how solid is that support? >> reporter: it appears very solid, norah. and there is a reason why in practical political terms. the president among republicans still has a 90% approval rating. that makes him more popular than many of the lawmakers who are in congress. and the president thrives on a fight. many republicans as they know him now do not want to get into a fight with this white house or this president.
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>> o'donnell: all right, major. reank you. an want to turn to that surprise development in syria where today u.s. troops began pulling back heom positions in the north. now, here's why this matters: america's kurdish allies could soon be overrun by turkish trces, and there is real concern that 10,000 isis cghters could escape. the democratic house speaker and the republican senate majority eeader rarely agree on anything, but tonight they are both speaking out against the president's plan. david martin reports tonight from the pentagon. >> reporter: u.s. troops abandoned observation posts along syria's boarder with turkey ahead of a threatened by the turkish army, which u.s. intelligence estimates could happen within the next 24 to 48 hours. president trump said it's only 50 soldiers who are being moved out of harm's way. >> i don't want those 50 people hurt or killed or anything. i don't want anything bad to happen to our people. >> reporter: but the president made it sound as though the
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final american pullout from syria had begun. >> at some point we have to bring our people back home. and that's what we're doing. >> reporter: the surprise move announced in a late-night white house press release was immediately denounced by more than half a dozen republican senators. majority leader mitch mcconnell warned a precipitous withdrawal of u.s. forces from syria would only benefit russia, iran, and the assad regime, and it would increase the risk that isis and other terrorist groups regroup. senator lindsey graham called it a betrayal of the kurdish forces, which had been leading the fight against isis. >> the kurds stepped up when nobody else would to fight isis. if we abandon them, good luck getting anybody to help america in the future with radical islam. >> reporter: the pullback came after a sunday phone call between the president and turkey's president erdogan, who has been threatening for weeks to send his army into northern syria to clear out what he considers kurdish terrorists
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threatening his country. the pentagon had tried to talk turkey out of it by conducting joint security patrols along the border. administration officials insist president trump did not give turkey a green light to invade syria. in one of his tweets, the president threatened to "totally destroy and obliterate the economy of turkey if it does anything that i, in my great and unmatched wisdom, consider to be off limits." norah. >> o'donnell: all right, david, thank you. and we wanted to understand what all this means. so holly williams has reported orom inside syria many times, including just a few weeks ago. and joins us now. >> reporter: well, norah, those kurdish fighters we're talking about are known as the syrian democratic forces or s.d.f. and we spoke with them over the phone today. they feel betrayed by the u.s. they are clearly very angry. i have been in and out of that part of syria over and over again since 2014, and i have
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gradually witnessed the s.d.f. bscome america's closest partners on the ground in the fight against isis. they say they've lost around 11,000 of their fighters, mostly young men and women, and that fight is not over. because although isis lost all of its territory back in march, rce group is still carrying out suicide attacks and assassinations. and the risk is that the s.d.f. will now say to the u.s., you have betrayed us once again, and nden it comes to the fight against isis, we're going to look after our interests and not do your bidding. >> o'donnell: and holly, that's gally the question. what's going to happen to these thousands of isis fighters that are imprisoned in northeast syria? >> reporter: the s.d.f. say they have around 12,000 accused isis fighters in those prisons, including 4,500 foreigners. we visited one just last month. nee nightmare scenario is the rid.f. has no resources to guard them, there is mass prison break and we see isis reform its army of militants. >> o'donnell: incredibly alarming. holly, as always, thank you for
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your incredible reporting. tonight britain's prime minister is calling on the wife of an american diplomat to return to england to face charges in a deadly crash. boris johnson says if she refuses he will personally call ifsident trump. imtiaz tyab has an emotional interview with the parents of the teenager who was killed. >> he was a peaceful boy, beautiful boy, big hearted. >> reporter: charlotte charles and tim dunn's love for their son harry is only outmatched by their sadness, but they say they have been robbed or their ability to grieve his death properly because of a legal protection for diplomats and their families. >> we can't rest. we can't settle. knowing that she killed our boy. or reporter: the woman allegedly responsible for killing 19-year- old harry dunn is anne sacoolas, the wife of a diplomat. she was exiting a u.s. intelligence and communications
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base and was driving down the wrong side of this country road heen she crashed head-on into dunn's motorcycle. initially cooperative with investigators, a few days later she abruptly flew back to the u.s. with diplomatic immunity. britain's prime minister, boris johnson, wants that immunity waived. >> if we can't resolve it, then of course i will be talking personally with the white house. >> reporter: harry dunn's parents say they are moved by the high level of support they have received, but all they want t allosure. it really does sound like for you this isn't about punishment or persecution. >> it's about doing the right thing. >> it's just about being... showing us that she's human and not inhuman. it's just inhumane. um o'donnell: imtiaz joins us from london. and the question some of us have is could her diplomatic immunity be revoked?
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>> reporter: well, a u.s. embassy spokesperson has told cbs news that this is a very sensitive issue, and frankly, and this is a direct quote here, "given the global impact such decisions carry, immunity is rarely waived." norah. >> o'donnell: all right. thank you. there is a serious crisis in iraq tonight. the government is trying to get a handle on protests that have been growing more violent by the day. in the past week more than 100 people have been killed, thousands more wounded. the protesters are demanding rubs and an end to corruption. the first monday of october means the start of the new ewpreme court term. and there could not be more at stake in this one. jan crawford is our chief legal correspondent and has covered the court for 25 years. and jan, i know this is shaping up to be an historic term. >> well, i mean they are taking every hot-button issue that's out there. you have gay rights, abortion, immigration, gun rights, and they are going to jump right into it. starting tomorrow with a case
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that really looks at whether or not federal civil rights law protects gays, lesbians, transgender people from discrimination in employment. and then in the months to come ndey will look at abortion and whether or not states can put more regulations on abortion clinics. they're going to have a case that looks at president trump's efforts to try to end that obama-era program called the dreamer program of course that was designed to protect people who came to this country illegally as children. and then there's gun rights. they will look at whether states can put restrictions on people's ability to who have legally owned firearms to take them outside your homes. >> o'donnell: my goodness, every single hot-button issue. and of course this is a new court because it has brett kavanaugh. >> he's replacing justice anthony kennedy, but justice kennedy would sometimes side with liberals on cases like abortion and gay rights, so will brett kavanaugh decide those on as in a more conservative way? there is the chief justice. liberals and conservatives will
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scrutinize his decisions and his actions if possibly he is the presiding judge in a senate trial if president trump is impeached. >> o'donnell: oh my goodness, so much at stake with this supreme court. thank you jan. acting homeland security secretary kevin mcaleenan walked off the stage today in georgetown after he was shouted off the stage by protesters who shouted the names of children rgo died in custody. mcaleenan was trying to give a speech on immigration policy and gw. >> what do we do? stand up! fight back! >> o'donnell: mcaleenan tried several times to start the speech, but he gave up after about seven minutes. in new york city today, a vigil was held for four homeless men eso were beaten to death over de weekend. the accused killer is himself homeless and as mola lenghi reports, the incident is drawing wiw attention to the struggles of some 500,000 americans living he the shelters or on the streets. >> reporter: a cloud of grief
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still hangs over new york city's chinatown. >> i can't believe he was killed dhat night. >> reporter: the shocked community remembering the four homeless victims beaten to death saturday night as neighbors and friends. >> i met him when i was a little girl. e> reporter: cheun kok was the oldest of the victims, he was 83. a homeless man, 24-year-old randy santos was arrested soon after, reportedly still carrying the alleged murder weapon. surveillance video shows santos wielding a metal object, beating the men as they slept on the threet. n lice say the attacks were random. e e incident has renewed focus on the country's vulnerable homeless population crisis. nationwide in 2018, there were more than 550,000 homeless people. in new york city there are more than 60,000 homeless people, and in los angeles it's more than 30,000. in 2018, 39 homeless people were killed in l.a., ten more than 2017. >> this cannot be the best that we can do.
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>> reporter: giselle routhier is with the coalition of the r:meless. >> we need affordable housing for people who are homeless. we need the government to step in when our housing market is mt fulfilling that gap for people. >> reporter: well, in addition to the four men killed, a fifth homeless man was also injured in the attack. he is still fighting for his life tonight. meanwhile, the suspect, randy santos, is facing four counts of murder, norah, as well as an attempted murder charge. >> o'donnell: all right, mola, thank you. there is still much more ahead on tonight's "cbs evening news." hospital officials take emergency action after a deadly nccteria strikes premature babies. how a pro-democracy tweet is threatening the n.b.a.'s multibillionlar partnership with china. and tyler perry has made millions making audiences laugh. isw he's making movie history. man 1: ...caused liver damage. vo: epclusa treats all main types of chronic hep c.
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nba hina over a pro-democracy tweet. the league is accused of putting tis multibillion dollar brand ahead of free speech. jim axelrod explains how the tweet sparked an international incident. >> reporter: in the world's most populous country, the most cpular pro sports league is the n.b.a. >> the n.b.a. is the only sport wo the world that has a chance to be a truly international iort that's based in the united states. and they need china to do this. ee reporter: anti-government protests have been raging in gong kong for the last four fnths, so when the houston rockets general manager darryl morey's friday night tweet, "fight for freedom, stand with hong kong," angered the chinese government, the n.b.a. jumped in e ickly, and not on the side of free speech. "morey's view deeply offended many of our friends and fans in china, which is regrettable." the rocket's biggest star, james harden also chimed in.
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>> we apologize. we love china. we love playing there. >> reporter: with more than half a billion chinese fans in the match-up of free speech versus big business, commerce, says cbs omorts lead n.b.a. reporter bill reiter, was a slam dunk. >> whatever american principles you bring to the table, including free speech, you check that at the door if you want to do business with china. >> reporter: morey walked back that tweet. h've had a lot of opportunity the hear and consider other thrspectives. d nid not intend my tweet to cause any offense. the n.b.a. is getting plenty of blow back itself and creating some strange bedfellows in the process. republican senator ted cruz from texas say the n.b.a.'s retreat is shameful. beto o'rourke, the democrat from el paso, called it an embarrassment. and norah, normally you can't those two to agree on what color the sky is. >> o'donnell: a lot of blow back indeed. jim, thank you. still ahead, with the stitches to prove it, america's oldest president may also be its
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>> o'donnell: breaking news from danville, pennsylvania. hoitals transferring some babies to nearby hospitals after three infants died there a bacterial infection. they were among eight premature babies who were infected by bacteria that spread by water. officials are working with state and federal health officials to make sure no other babies get sick. there is no slowing down former president jimmy carter. today he and rosalyn appeared at a habitat for humanity event in veshville one day after he took one sty fall at home in georgia. a black eye and 14 stitches were visible beneath his hat. mr. carter turned 95 last week, the first president to reach that milestone. also recovering, presidential candidate bernie sanders. an and his wife jane took a walk in the rain today in burlington, vermont. sanders suffered a heart attack last week and had two stents inserted into an artery.
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>> o'donnell: we end tonight with history in the making. actor tyler perry's new film and tv studio is now open for show business more than 2,000 miles from hollywood in atlanta. meg oliver has some of gayle king's exclusive interview with the inspiring studio boss. >> reporter: tyler perry is the first african american to adependently own a major film studio. l's the largest film complex in the country, bigger than the burbank, california, lots owned by warner brothers, paramount, pd walt disney studios combined. hollywood a-listers celebrated perry on saturday. beforehand he spoke with "cbs this morning's" gayle king. >> "the new york times" said you are the most successful mogul hollywood has ever ignored. do you think hollywood gets you? >> no. i clearly believe that i'm ignored in hollywood for sure. hd that's fine. i get it. th wait a second. is that fine? >> it is. my audience and the stories that i tell are african american stories that i grew up with.
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thatwe speak a language. hollywood doesn't necessarily speak the language. >> who doing your hair? >> reporter: but perry's "madea" rlms have had universal appeal. he hopes to build on their success. " dney ho has covered entertainment in atlanta for tcades. is this considered the next delta air lines or coca-cola? >> when people bring up atlanta, heu think of cnn and ted turner and hank aaron and the braves and coca cola, and you'll think of tyler perry. >> reporter: the studio is built on confederate is lost not on perry, who named after prominent african americans in the film industry. meg oliver, cbs news, new york. o o'donnell: and tomorrow on cbs this morning, gayle goes inside tyler perry's massive new studio. that is the "cbs evening news." "m norah o'donnell in washington with thanks to the innes day law firm for this fcredible view of the capitol. and we'll see you tomorrow. good night. captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by media access group at wgbh
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