tv NBC Nightly News NBC April 12, 2012 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT
ann romney that has broen up to a political stome. >> day in court, george zimmerman is charged. going to distance. the growing number of americans with an unbelievable daily commute. and building a cream odream cardboard boxes. what hanned next is beyond this little boy's wildest imagination. "nightly news" begins now. good evening. on one level, it's 1 of those
distractions that have been so numerous during this campaign season, except this is more than that. a democratic operative named hillary rosen was appearing as she often does on cable news for an unofficial surrogate for the bumma campaign and democratses in general, then she uttered the words that blew up. she said among other things, ann romney hasn't worked a day in her life. then it rekindled the debate about women working outside the home and inside the how many. by the end of the day, the vice president, president, and first lady weighed in. she apologized. an issue that wasn't yesterday is a big one today. we begin with andrea mitchell. >> only 24 hours ago, mitt romney was surrounding by women and has leaned howeveavily on h wife, ann. trying to narrow a gender gap that has become a virtual canyon
in the contentious primaries, then romney was handed a political gift. when a prominent democratic strategist not working for the white house argued that ann romney cannot relate to actual women. >> his wife has never worked a day in her life. she's never dealt with the economic issues that a majority of thewoman in the country deal with, as in terls of how do we feed our kids, and why do we worry about their future? >> with lightning speed, her remarks exploded on twitter. the romney campaign called it a kill ann strategy. axel rod tweeted, also disappointed about her comments about ann romney. the first lady who worked part time out of the home until the 2008 campaign tweeted every mother works hard and every woman deserves to be respected
and ann romney wrote her first tweet, i made a choice to stay home and raise five boys. believe me, it was hard work. she also went on fox. >> my career choice was to be a mother. all of us need to know that we need to respect choices that women make. other women make choices to make a career and raise a family. >> the president said there was no tougherer job than to be a mom. >> i watched michelle for most of her wife worked and raised the children, and that's work. this was an ill-advised statement by somebody on television. it's not something that i subscribe to. and moreover, my general rule is you don't talk about the spouses of elected officials. >> in the middle of the fire storm, late today, rihillary ron apologized for her choice of words. >> mrs. romney, i applaud your
decision to stay home and raise five boys. i think your husband needs to stand up for women's economic struggles and so far, we have not seen how he's going to to that on the campaign trail. >> rosen also called the spat a distraction to avoid mitt romney's real record, but she has clearly touched a nerve, reigniting a debate that has ranged as long as there's been women and wirk outside the home. >> andrea, thanks. >> as we said, this is likely not a one-day story, and it's certainly not just a washington story. as nbc's chris jansing found out today, this one prompted talk all over. >> maria smith is a suburban atlanta stay at home mom of three with a fourth on the way. she considers herself a liberal. but was shocked when she heard hillary rosen's comments. >> i felt offended, mad, this is something i thought was on my
side, but actually really didn't understand me. >> today, she discovered she wasn't the only one with a visceral reaction. >> i have talked about this today at preschool pickup, at the playground talking to some moms about it. i was surprised at how many people picked up the story. >> a story that started as a political discussion started up a discussion decades old hitting a nerve about a woman's place. this woman is now the editor of more. >> welcome to the mommy wars version 2012. i bet you every single woman on the train, my train home tonight is going to be talking about this. somebody threw one little match in the pile there, and the whole thing ignited. >> that's clear from impassioned posted on the comments sections of news segments like i village. >> kelly wallace is chief correspondent for i village and
a working mom. >> this debate totally res nots. i think, about this issue all the time, because i, of course, feel conflict like i think so many women when i hear my little ones r s running around the the playground and i'm not there. it doesn't get any more emotional than the mommy wars. >> on the huffington post, a columnist suggested for the election, the hillary rosen kerfuffle means nothing, but for women, it's giving new life to an unsettled and unsettling debate. >> we got the first look at george zimmerman, the neighborhood watch volunteer now charged with second degree murder for killing trayvon martin. zimmerman made a brief appearance in court today in san ford, florida. kerry sanders is standing by for us there tonight. good evening. >> good evening. brian. george zimmerman will spend another snoith in jail here. his lawyer didn't even request a bond hearing today.
instead, he requested and was granting a judicial steal on all almost of the public records, but for the probable cause affidavit. >> will be soon here, i understand. >> wearing a blue jump suit, his hands cuffed, joerng zimmerman walked into the court room in sanford, florida. flank eed by his attorney who entered a not guilty plea. zimmerman was in the courtroom for less than thirty-tree minut. a routine hearing that would not normally be attended by the prosecutor, but today, angela corey was there. in documents outlining probable cause, investigators who examined the case, concluded 17-year-old trayvon martin was profiled by george zimmerman and zimmerman confronted martin, and a struggle ensued, and then there's the heart to understand muttering in zimmerman's call to the police. >> this guy looks like he's up
to no good or he's on drugs or something. >> the affidavit also referred to two statements zimmerman made in phone calls to police, quoting him as saying these, they always get away, and these punks. and that scream heard on one of the 911 calls -- >> so you think he's yelling help? >> yes. >> the affidavit says trayvon martin's mother listened to the call and she identified the voice crying for help as trayvon martin's voice. >> some of the evidence to establish probable cause. >> zimmerman's second degree murder case has been assigned to a former prosecutor and mother of two. >> this judge was assigned randomly, just luck of the draw, that brought her into what will be the biggest case of her career. >> earlier on the "today" show, trayvon martin's parents said they were relieved zimmerman had finally been arrested, but then sabrina fulton described her
son's death as an accident. >> believe it was an accident. i believe it just got out of control, and he couldn't turn the clock back. >> later, she told nbc's lester holt the accident was their chance encounter that night. >> do you think mr. zimmerman meant to kill trayvon? >> yes, when he got out of the vehicle, his intentions was to shoot and kill. on the tape, it says they always get away. so he wanted to make sure that this one didn't get away. >> george zimmerman's attorney, michael o'mara. >> we have an arraignment set for the 29th. we'll attend to a bond motion and tell you when it's set for. >> defense attorney mark o'mara said that while george zimmerman did shoot and kill trayvon martin, he is not guilty of a crime. brian. >> kerry sanders, sanford, florida. tonight. thank you. and once again, savannah guthrie is here with us in the studio. when you hear a woman like
trayvon martin's mother who isn't a media pro, use the word it was an accident, does that have a legal bearing, even though show chose not to correct it later? >> not really. it doesn't have legal significant, but it was interesting because what prosecutors allege is much more, an intentional killing. obwrsly, she walked back the statement, but what a mom t theorizines about a case has no relevance in a court of law. >> and documents are going to come out. did we learn anything new facal facally? >> we learned a few thicks. we talked how prosecutors have to establish a state of mind, a depraved mind, intent, evil intent, ill will, hatred. we see facts established in the affidavit. prosecutors will argue that zimmerman assumed martin was a criminal when he pro filed him, he used disparaging words with the dispatcher, saying they always get away. these are some of the facts that the prosecutors obviously think
are relevant to establish that state of mind. >> thank you once again for being here with us, savannah guthrie. in greensboro, north care cay, jury selection started in the criminal trial of john edwar edwards. he is charged with violating campaign finance laws while trying to hide an extramarital affair. lisa myers was in the courtroom. >> a somber john edwards arrived add federal court to fight for his freedom and whatever is left of his reputation. >> good morning. how are you? how are you feeling? >> okay. how are you. >> do you think given the negative public opinion, you can get a fair trial. >> i'm not going to say anything. >> finding a fair trial won't be easy. public opinion here is brutal. >> slick. just really slick guy who will say and do anything. >> inside court, judge katherine eagles emphasized to potential jurors this is not a trial about
whether mr. edwards was a good husband or a good politician. it's about whether he violated campaign fine anls laws. prosecutors allege almost $1 million provided to hide his then pregnant mistress while he was running for president amounted to illegal campaign contributions. hunter may be called as a witness in the trial. she and edwards have a 4-year-old daughter, quinn. ever-present in the case, the memory of elizabeth edwards, who succumbed to breast cancer in december, 2010. >> i know that the edwards trial team will be concerned about the fact that people really just can't get over the fact that he cheated on his wife while she had cancer and was dying. >> to show their support, edwards' daughter kate and his parents were by his side. the edwards defense is while he may have been a lousy husband, he's not a criminal. his lawyers argue this case is unprecedented and say they'll fight the charges aggressively.
lisa myers, nbc news, greensboro, north carolina. >> still ahead for us tonight as we continue along the way, the long way home. the growing number of super commuters, as they're called, who cover huge distances to hold on to a job and a home. and later, if this doesn't make you smile, nothing will, perhaps. a little boy with a big imagination and a success story that started with a cardboard box. emily's just starting out... and on a budget. like a ramen noodle- every-night budget. she thought allstate car insurance was out of her reach.
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americans are living with job and economic insecurity and as falling home values have made it difficult if not impossible to move, there's been a big uptick in people willing or forced to travel extreme distances to go to work. there's even a name for them, supercommuters, and their numbers are decidedly on the rise. janet shamlian has our report from houston. >> the day starts early in this houston carpenter shop. but no one in the warehouse serving the md anderson cancer center has had an earlier wakep call than their nant nns manage. he leaved at 4:15 because his daily drive to work one way is 95 miles. >> the first five minutes can be very difficult. i'm like, oh, my gosh, how am i going to do this? >> but he does. 3:30 behind the wheel a day. 1,000 a week on his car, and
monthly, $450 for gas. >> worm with a hook. >> the father of four who travels from fayetteville, texas, is a supercommuter, one of a growing number of americans who live in one city and work in another. >> the enormous increase in supercommuters is do to the willingness of americans to travel huge distances to keep a job, hold a job, and keep a jop but not at the price of making their families move with them. >> mitchell moss, the author of the study which found extreme rises in commutes in eight metropolitan areas. even as gas prices climb. sometimes, the trip to work is measured not in gallons of gas but in airline miles. southwest runs two dozen flights like this one between houston and dallas every day. many are filled with passengers who use it almost like a city bus service, to get to and from their jobs. rackspace now provides its own wi-fi enables bus for workers who commute 80 miles between
austin and san antonio. >> paying for the commute on the surface looks crazy, but we can tell you it makes absolute business sense. >> for workers, supercommuting makes more financial sense than trying to sell their home in a tough economy. for rodney, the motivation is simple. his family lives here. he has a life here. >> at the end of the day, family is what matters most. >> the long road, no longer less traveled, as workers go to distance for a paycheck. janet shamlian, nbc news, houston. up next, the toy that scared a lot of people today, and the big change reconfirmed just today about the american family. ttd#: 1-800-345-2550
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just across the street from ground zero in the financial center that was damaged on 9/11, somebody confused a fake grenade with a real one today, and the building was evacuated and the bomb squad was called until they traced the whole thing back to the complaint department. we learned today that unmarried couples living together are having children at a much higher rate than in the past, nearly double the number from just ten years ago, and up more than 300% from back in 1985. works out to this, 1 in 4 babies now being born to parents who live together aren't married. the cdc compiled the stats. they didn't offer any reasons why marriage has gone by the wayside for so many more of these new parents these days. there were lights in the skies last night over at least four states. a lot of people witnessed the same meteor. there it is, across parts of illinois, wisconsin, michigan, and iowa. most people saw a green tint with a white tail, but due to
atmospherics, others saw blue, yellow, red. it appears to have taken 10 to 12 seconds to span the horizon. one astronomy website was lit up with 170 separate sightings wroorb. >> and only a freak of nature texas could supply, a huge, violent thunderstorm produced as much as four feet of hail. piled of it, enough to look like a major snowfall, and do this. a sudden deluge of ice from above called flash floods as well, and later on, a kind of spooky fog that rose up from all of that melting ice on an otherwise warm day. up next here tonight, a 9-year-old boy who can teach a very important lesson to a lot of folks much older. i stepped on the machine, and it showed me the pressure points on
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finally tonight, we have a great story out of los angeles. east l.a., to be precise. it's about a 9-year-old boy, a cardboard dream, and finally, a first customer who changed everything for him. the story tonight from nbc's miguel almaguer. >> on the tough streets of east l.a., tucked between a junk yard and an auto repair shop is a little boy's dream.
>> i started with a basketball net that i glued to a box and it kept getting bigger. >> over a long summer, this boy, an arcade enthusiast, set up shop in his dad's shop. >> i got tokens. >> to keep busy, he turned scraps of cardboard and cape into cane's arcade. >> he's got a big imagination. he dreams bi. >> there was just one problem, for weeks and weeks and weeks, no customers, no one to play. >> his dad told me i was his first and only customer. >> this filmmaker was looking for a car part. instead, he found inspiration. >> when you score a point, he would crawl into the box and he pulls out these little tickets out of the side of the cardboard. >> like real arcade games, tickets come from the bottom. >> i was like, this kid is a genius. >> he turns cane's story into a ten-minute web video. all it needed was a happy ending. >> we hashed a plan to invite everybody in l.a. to play cane's
arcade. >> word spread on the web and cameras were there when a little boy's dream -- >> what's going on over here? >> came to life. >> we finally got some customers here. >> we came to play! we came to play! >> cane's arcade went viral. kids loved it. >> man, i don't know what to say. you're famous. >> and grownups didn't just watch. they gave. $100,000 donated to a college fund for cane. >> what do you want to be when you grow up? >> someone who invents games. >> you already did that, huh? pretty good at it. >> yeah. >> one little boy's summer project. now inspiring countless others to think outside the box. miguel almaguer, nbc news, los angeles. >> that's our broadcast for this thursday night. thank you for being here with us. i'm brian williams. and we hope to see you right back here tomorrow evening. good night.