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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  March 23, 2019 5:30pm-6:00pm PDT

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we are told he outdanced everyone. you know what, i guarantee his party just moved somewhere else. >> we are back at 6:00. >> see you then. tonight, multiple stories breaking as we come on the air. mounting pressure on the trump administration to release robert mueller's report as the suspense builds over what is in it and what the public will see. robert kraft breaks his silence. the patriots owner saying he is true sorry in his first comments. what he will do now. desperation at sea. passengers and crew stuck on a cruise ship in strong winds and violent water. helicopters airlifting them to safety one by one. u.s.-backed forces claim victory over isis in syria, but is this really the end for the terror group?
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the uproar over the acquittal of a police officer who killed an unarmed teenager near pittsburgh last year. as shots are fired into the office of the officer's attorney. the backlash toward barbra streisand for her comments about michael jackson's accusers. what she is now saying about the controversy. good evening. the mueller report is now finished, but the real fight is just beginning. the nearly two-year investigation into whether president trump or anyone in his inner circle included with the russians in the 2016 elections is now in the hands of the attorney general. william barr spent the day reviewing the documents. tonight what is in them remains a mystery to the rest of us, and that has washington reeling with some members of congress demanding the trump administration make the entire report public. from capitol hill to president trump's
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retreat in florida, we have multiple reports tonight. we begin with nbc justice correspondent pete williams in washington. good evening. where does this stand tonight? >> reporter: jose, expectations were high that we might have our first rundown by this time tonight on the main points of the report. but as reporters and congressional staffers waited all day, word came late today that nothing will be revealed until tomorrow, and we don't yet know how detailed that will be. it will be up to attorney general william barr to decide what can be revealed about the special counsel's nearly two-year investigation into whether anyone in the trump campaign helped the russians meddle in the election. barr spent the day at the justice department studying the mueller report to fulfill a suggestion he made friday in a letter to congress to tell members as soon as this weekend what he could about mueller's principled conclusions. barr is under no legal obligation to do this. he's already done what the special counsel rules require by telling congress friday that mueller's work is done and that the justice department never said no to
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anything mueller wanted to do. but the attorney was nominated and again on friday that he's committed to providing as much information as possible about the conclusions of the most highly anticipated federal investigation in recent memory. pete williams, nbc news, washington. >> the battle over this report now heads to congress where democratic members are intensifying their calls for the report to be made public. nbc's geoff bennett joins us from capitol hill with more. geoff? >> reporter: now that the mueller report is wrapped up, the battle to find out what's in it is just beginning. it's a matter of rare bipartisan agreement, both sides pushing the justice department to make the mueller report public. tonight democrats and republicans are pressuring attorney general bill barr to deliver on his word. >> when his report comes to you, will you share it with us as much as possible? >> consistent with the regulations and the law, yes. >> rtetch
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mcconnell says he hopes barr will do so as soon as he can and with as much openness and transparency as possible. house speaker nancy pelosi and senate democratic leader chuck schumer demanding more. insisting on seeing the full report and all of the special counsel's work. pelosi in a letter to her democratic colleagues today saying, "congress requires the full report and the underlying documents so that the committees can proceed with their independent work, including oversight and legislating to address any issues the mueller report may raise. the american people deserve the truth." on that last point, even president trump agrees. >> let it come out. let people see it. that's up to the attorney general. >> reporter: republicans pushing for public disclosure to clear the cloud of suspicion. >> if there's no collusion that was found, then it strongly vindicates president trump, but it raises those serious questions about who's going to be held accountable at the fbi, the bad
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actors that had a political agenda. >> reporter: democrats aiming to dig deeper to find out whether mueller's findings implicate the president in any wrongdoing. >> we want to know did donald trump, his family members, or any of his associates commit any crime? >> reporter: house democrats say they're ready to go to court to force the report's release and subpoena robert mueller to testify if the special counsel report isn't made public. geoff bennett, nbc news, washington. >> reporter: i'm kelly o'donnell in florida where president trump flashed a thumbs up to supporters who lined his motorcade route to mar-a-lago. for a president known for freely expressing his thoughts, his restraint now is note worthy, if only temporary. friday night at mar-a-lago -- >> first i want to thank everybody -- >> reporter: the president kept things light at a private republican fundraiser. no journalists there, but attendees posted on social media as he welcomed donors and teased ally lindsey
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graham. >> not going to say anything bad about me.r: tay te president's outside legal counsel says they've had no contact recently with the attorney general or special counsel. the president has not seen mueller's report, and neither have his lawyers. but rudy giuliani offered his own favorable prediction. saying the special counsel could describe the president's handling of james comey's firing as unwise or imprudent but not an obstruction of justice. mueller's findings are fuel for both parties on the campaign trail. democrats today demand swift transparency. >> i think the bulk of this report should be released to the public. >> we need a full accounting of what happened if we're going to move on. >> i believe that there's no question the american people need not only have an interest but a need to see everything that's in that report. >> reporter: tonight there's no indication the white house is prepared to say anything more. the president is scheduled to return to
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washington late sunday afternoon. so it's possible he could be in the air if the attorney general decides to release some information during that time. and if the president still keeps all of his thoughts close to the vest, he has a campaign rally scheduled for thursday in michigan. that's the kind of forum where he often vents whatever is on his mind. jose? >> kelly o'donnell in west palm beach, thank you. i want to bring in nbc's political director and moderator of "meet the press," chuck todd. good evening. what's next? >> what's next is going to be a political fight and a campaign of sorts. the political fight is going to be between congressional democrats, perhaps the justice department, and maybe the white house. look, the biggest unknown in the report is what -- is there an obstruction of justice case. because obstruction of justice and collusion in some ways are intertwined. if you didn't find collusion, is it because the investigation was obstructed? how are we going to see that? well, that testimony is the testimony that
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the white house would ask for executive privilege on. it could be months, jose, before congress sees this. this could be a fight that goes to the supreme court and, frankly, politically, the white house may want to draw this out. the more they draw it out, the more they make democrats ask for this report, the more they politicize it, and politically a paralyzed, polarized environment is probably the best result they could hope for. >> chuck todd, thank you so much. chuck, of course, will have more tomorrow on "meet the press." breaking news tonight as new england patriots owner robert kraft releases his first statements since being charged in a prostitution sting operation in florida. the billionaire says he is truly sorry. nbc's tammy leitner has more. >> reporter: he owns the super bowl champs, but just weeks after this year's big win, new england patriots charged with kraft was soliciting sex. and now for the first time, he's breaking his silence.
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in a statement just released, he says, "i am truly sorry. i know i have hurt and disappointed my family, my close friends, my co-workers, our fans, and many others who rightfully hold me to a higher standard." the public apology comes a month after the charges that stem from a prostitution sting at this day spa in jupiter, florida. he's pled not guilty to the charges. now he's defending his reputation. "throughout my life, i have always tried to do the right thing. i have extraordinary respect for women." much of this case is built around surveillance video from the spa that has not been publicly released. the billionaire may never have to go to court if he accepts a plea deal, admitting the evidence including the videos taken would have been enough to convict him. the deal also includes community service, sexually transmitted disease screening, and fines. no word on if he'll take the plea. the whole incident a distraction as nfl owners are gathering
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tomorrow for their annual meeting. >> the league will look at what the end result is here because the league has a code of conduct, and the code of conduct applies to both players and to owners. and owners have been suspended as well as numerous players in the past. >> reporter: kraft, meanwhile, looking for redemption saying in a statement, "i hope to regain your confidence and respect." this as his legacy remains in question. tammy leitner, nbc news. and more breaking news. this from off the coast of norway where painstaking rescue efforts are now underway to evacuate passengers and crew one by one from a cruise ship that has broken down in some very rough weather. as nbc's sarah harmon reports, that rescue effort triggered another emergency operation. >> reporter: a nightmare at sea. 1,300 people stranded aboard a cruise ship
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in violent waters. tonight they're being >> when the glass broke, water came in, and people fell down, and they were getting cut. i was petrified. >> reporter: the "viking sky" was cruising the western coast of norway when it lost engine power. issuing a mayday call just after 2:00 p.m. local time. the passengers, mostly british and american citizens according to local media, are posting terrified messages on social media as they wait to be rescued. >> very frightening. we went up on a helicopter with a sling, the two of us together. and it was quite scary. >> reporter: the area where the ship is stranded is considered one of the most dangerous stretches of norway's coast. a cargo ship attempting to help rescue "viking sky's" passengers has also issued a mayday call due to engine failure. two helicopters have
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now been diverted to recovering that boat. and as darkness falls, two harrowing rescues are now underway. sarah harmon, nbc news, london. in syria today, u.s.-backed fighters declared victory over the islamic state saying the terrorist group no longer holds land in the country. the milestone comes amid an incident involving members of our own team. nbc news president noah oppenheim issuing this statement, "earlier today a device exploded in the vicinity of a group from nbc news in syria. we are thankful that nbc employees escaped unharmed. however, one of the local drivers working with them was tragically killed. our deepest sympathies go out to his family and loved ones. we're still gathering information and are in touch with the driver's family to support them however we can." matt bradley is in syria and got a tour of the areas isis leaves behind. >> reporter: this is
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how the islamic state's so-called caliphate ended. its murderous reign of terror that lasted for years and straddled iraq and syria died here in the tiny eastern syrian village of baghouz. it's clear from what we're seeing today that this battle has been over for a little while. there aren't any bodies here that are visible. the sdf, the syrian democratic forces, the u.s. allies on the ground have clearly come through and combed this place both for dead bodies and for land mines which is why it's safe for us to walk here. but even though this terrible end to this murderous caliphate that lasted so long has come this morning, it's clear that the ideology that backed it is going to continue. we've spoken with some of the women and children, some of the fighters who have left here. they said that they're going to continue this thought, they're going to spread this ideology, this incredibly austere form of islam around the world wherever they're able to take it. while the caliphate may be dead, islamic state as we know it
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may still be alive. matt bradley, nbc news, eastern syria. on the streets of paris today authorities staged a major response to the yellow vests protests that have gripped france for months. for the first time in 19 weekends, the government brought in military units to back up police who fired teargas on demonstrators. from protests in paris to ones flurrying up here in the united states over the acquittal yesterday of an east pittsburgh police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black teenager. nbc's molly hunter has the latest on the verdict and the outcry that followed. no peace -- >> no racist police! >> reporter: today anger on the streets of pittsburgh. >> black lives matter! >> reporter: the outrage after a jury reached their decision in less than four hours friday, finding a former east pittsburgh police officer not guilty of murder or manslaughter. >> unfortunately we have come to expect this kind of outcome all throughout the country. >> it is our duty to
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fight for our freedom! >> reporter: the jury, nine white and three black, acquitted michael rosfeld, who is white, for the 2018 shooting of antwon rose, a 17-year-old who was black and unarmed. rose is shown in the white shirt and his friend running from police. their car, rosfeld said, matched the description of a car involved in a shooting nearby and two guns were later found inside. rosfeld fired three shots, hitting rose in the back, the elbow, and the face. his defense, "it happened very quickly," he said in court. "my intent was to end the threat that was made against me." >> he did his job, and nothing to do with the color of anybody that he was arresting. >> reporter: after the verdict, rosfeld's attorney's office was shot up. today a commitment to keep fighting and remembering an honors student and a son. >> i'm angry, but i'm not -- it hurts more than anything. >> reporter: molly hunter, nbc news.
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still ahead tonight, what barbra streisand is now saying after her comments about michael jackson and his accusers that sparked outrage. also, a new problem facing millions of disaster victims.
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we're back with an streis she is now clarifying some comments she made and two men accused him of sexually abusing them as children.
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nbc's kathy park has our report. >> reporter: tonight barbra streisand is singing a different tune after swift backlash on line over comments she made about two michael jackson accusers. in an interview published friday in "the times of london," streisand was asked about the hbo documentary "leaving neverland" in which wade robson and james safechuck allege the king of pop sexually abused them as young boys. >> he told me if they ever found out what we were doing, he and i would go to jail for the rest of our lives. >> reporter: streisand told the reporter, "his sexual needs were his sexual needs. coming from whatever childhood he has or whatever dna he has." she added, "you can say molested, but those children, as you heard say, they were thrilled to be there. they both married, and they both have children, so it didn't kill them." on social media, streisand started trending for the wrong
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reasons. "leaving neverland" director dan reed tweeted, "is pedophilia tolerated in parts of the entertainment industry?" late saturday the singer released a statement clarifying her remarks. "to be crystal clear, there is no situation or circumstance where it is okay for the innocence of children to be taken advantage of by anyone. the stories these two young men shared were painful to hear, and i feel nothing but sympathy for them." ♪ the brooklyn >> reporter: a singer known for her high notes now falling flat for her choice words. kathy park, nbc news. when we return, the new threat ahead for parts of the country already suffering from historic floods.
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more rain is expected tonight for areas of the midwest already reeling from record breaking floods caused by a deluge of rain and melting snow over the last couple weeks. gauges across the region at minor, moderate, or major flooding stages. devastating floods have spurred a major humanitarian crisis in mozambique. this after a cyclone swept across southern africa a little over a week ago killing more than 400 people. officials say they are overwhelmed by the scale of the disaster which destroyed the homes of more than 400,000 people. millions of americans who already survived natural deserves tonight are now at risk for fraud or identity theft because of what fema is calling a major privacy incident.
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a new government report says the agency unnecessarily shared sensitive information about more than two million people who applied for transitional housing in 2017. that includes survivors of the california wildfires and hurricanes harvey, irma, and maria. when we return, it's never too late to get back into the band and, well, even lend a helping hand.
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and finally tonight, kevin tibbles introduces us to a group of retirees sharing their musical talents with the younger generation. ♪ >> reporter: as the band students at lincoln middle school belt it out, there's one member who, well, stands out from the others. >> i'm ben "grandpa" serial number one. >> reporter: artie rosen, retired doctor and amateur musician, created the band grandpa program in rockford, illinois. >> the music is a lifelong thing. that's what i want the kids to understand just by their association with me. that someone in his 60s is still doing it. >> reporter: he's gone back to school to lend a hand with the band. >> ready, go -- >> reporter: assisting kids, many from families facing hard times. ♪ >> the best part is when a kid quietly comes up to me after we've worked on something and just says, "thank you." ♪ >> reporter: grandpa
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russ stonebeck is a retired rocket scientist -- really -- and he loves playing the tuba. ♪ what does grandpa get out of it? >> at the end of the day, the satisfaction of knowing you put a smile on some kid's face. >> reporter: sounds like you might have one on your own. >> yeah. >> reporter: two years since it started, 12 grandpas and grandmas spread their love of music. and not just in band choir and orchestra too. ♪ and the tune is catching. >> i'm not the best player here, but you know, he makes me feel like i'm one of the best. >> even if you do make mistakes, you'll always get better because you just keep trying and trying until you get your best. >> reporter: what else do you think you're teaching them aside from music? >> a sense of values. anything that you want to be good at takes dedication. ♪ >> reporter: and when a young person finally hits that pitch-perfect note, well, that is music to their ears. >> i think that if someone has music,
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they have a friend for life. >> reporter: kevin tibbles, nbc news, reporting from new york. thank you for the privilege of your time, and good night. bernie sao the bay. the vermontat the rounds in california, trying to convince voters that he )s the right man to take the job from president trump. the news at six starts right now. good evening and thanks for joining us. i )m terry mcsweeney. and i )m anoushah rasta. l-a today... and san francisco tomorrow. senator bernie sanders is good evening. thk us. >> l.a. today, san francisco tomorrow. bernie sanders is campaigning here in california once again.
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>> today he spoke out about the mueller investigation that is now finished. sergio is live at fort mason where tomorrow's event will be held. >> reporter: i can tell you this event tomorrow is already being set up. you can get a pretty clear view of the golden gate bridge from where the stage is set up. people started sets this up today. few icons embody the golden gate. the vermont senator is drawing big crowds. his visited the southern california islamic center as a show of support. senator sanders is among the top two democratic party presidential candidates when it comes to fund raising. donors have gives justnd

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