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tv   CBS Evening News With Scott Pelley  CBS  March 28, 2017 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT

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tonight at 5:00. >> today at 6:00, why pg & e is buying up expensive homes in san francisco. back in 30 minutes. >> pelley: u.s. gymnasts tell horror stories. to the u.s. congress. >> he abused me in my hotel room at the sydney olympic games. >> i trusted you during gymnastics, but i was sexually abused. >> pelley: also tonight, climate change initiatives up in smoke. >> my administration is putting an end to the war on coal. ha pelley: chairman nunes says he will not drop out of the trump-russia investigation. >> if the president puts russian salad dressing on his salad tonight, somehow that's a russian connection. >> pelley: the t.s.a. defends ats new aggressive screenings at airports. and jackie no, a former first lady and the proposal she turned down.
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this is the "cbs evening news" with scott pelley. >> pelley: this is our western edition. we're going to begin tonight with a troubling story that first gained national attention on "60 minutes," the sexual abuse of female olympic gymnasts. today victims told congress the stories they had kept secret for years out of fear. legislation is in the works to protect future victims. dr. jon lapook has been heading our investigation of the case, and he has today's capitol hill developments. >> i want the women who testified to know how very proud i am of you for standing up. i know how hard it is. >> reporter: senators called today's testimony an act of bravery. elite gymnasts including jessica howard and jamie dantzscher described sexual abuse by dr. lawrence nassar beginning when they were teens. dantzscher won a bronze medal in
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the 2000 olympics. >> he abused me in my hotel room in sydney at the olympic games. i was disbelieved and even criticized by some in the gymnastics community for bringing this disturbing issue to light. now i know that i am not alone. >> reporter: rhythmic gymnast jessica howard says she was 15 when dr. nassar first abused her. >> my post-gymnastics life has been fraught with issues stemming from the abuse i endured as a young teenager. >> reporter: the sex scandal has odbroiled u.s.a. gymnastics, the national governing body for the sport. last summer an investigation by the indie star revealed allegations against gymnastics coaches that prompted more than 100 young women, including howard and dantzscher, to come forward about nassar. u.s.a. gymnastics was a no-show at today's hearing. that angered connecticut senator richard blumenthal. >> if they really cared, they would be here. >> reporter: senator dianne feinstein is cosponsor of legislation designed to change the culture of national sports.
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it would mandate immediate reporting to authorities of any atspected sexual abuse and ban coaches under investigation from continuing to work with children until it's determined there's no risk to them. former u.s.a. gymnastics president steve penny resigned earlier this month. u.s.a. gymnastics supports the bill. >> my own view is that the board should change and people be put at that board that have this number one in their mind. >> reporter: nassar is being held without bail. he pleaded not guilty to possession of child pornography and sexual assault not related to dantzscher or howard. scott, u.s.a. gymnastics told us its representatives didn't appear in person because of pending litigation. >> pelley: jon lapook, thank you. president trump is calling the story of his campaign's ties to urssia a hoax, even though his national security adviser and his campaign chairman were fired over it. the house, senate, and f.b.i. are all looking into russian
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meddling in the election, and ecday the republican chairman of the house intelligence committee stid he will not take himself off the investigation. democrats and at least one republican are demanding devin nunes recuse himself because he has appeared to be coordinating with the white house. jeff pegues has the latest. >> are you going the stay as chairman and run this investigation? >> why would i not? >> reporter: house intelligence committee chairman devin nunes dismissed accusations that he has been intentionally delaying his committee's investigation. the committee has held one public hearing on russia and was supposed to have a second today. but after nunes announced late last week that he had been shown intercepted communications involving members of the trump transition team, today's session was canceled. it was supposed to feature testimony from former acting attorney general sally yates about the justice department's investigation of former national
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security adviser michael flynn. in january, yates informed the white house that flynn had misled the vice president about his contacts with the russian ambassador. cbs news has obtained this letter from the trump justice g partment to yates' attorney warning that there was a limit to what she could reveal in her testimony and that she needs to consult with the white house. yates followed up with the white house lawyers on friday. they never responded, and the same day nunes canceled the s aring. press secretary sean spicer said technically the white house didn't stop her testimony. >> the white house did not respond and took no action to preventing miss yates from testifying. >> right now i should be sitting in a hearing and the american people should be hearing from sally yates. >> reporter: democrat eric swalwell is a member of the intelligence committee. >> this is what cover-up behavior looks like. >> that's pretty strong to say that. >> it's our job to get to the bottom of what's going on, but right now the american people want transparency, and what they
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are getting are more and more smoke bombs. >> reporter: while some gpublicans have been critical of nunes, only one g.o.p. member of the house has joined democrats in calling for him the step aside. today north carolina's walter jones broke ranks and said nunes should recuse himself. >> pelley: jeff pegues in our washington newsroom. thanks. today president trump made good on a campaign promise and nullified a series of obama asministration rules that limit greenhouse gasses. his order would allow coal mining on federal lands, permit the oil industry to release more methane, and would allow more carbon pollution from power plants that burn coal. methane and carbon are the leading contributors to climate warning. t. trump said all of this is intended to put american miners back to work and major garrett is at the white house. >> i am taking historic steps to lift the restrictions on american energy to, reverse
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government intrusion and to cancel job-killing regulations. >> reporter: president trump made history of the obama administration's efforts to curb greenhouse gasses. by signing an executive order at the environmental protection agency, mr. trump took the first step toward erasing rules limiting carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired power plants and easing restrictions on new coal mines. >> my administration is putting an end to the war on coal. >> reporter: industry workers joined mr. trump for the event. >> you see what it says, right? you're going back the work. >> reporter: coal mining accounts for roughly 50,000 jobs in america, down from its peak of nearly 180,000 in 1985. automation and the availability of natural gas from hydraulic fracturing has made coal production less competitive. >> we're here to announce the single most important step america has ever taken in the fight against global climate change.
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>> reporter: when president obama created the clean power plant, mr. trump is now reversing, mr. obama emphasized the need the tackle rising global temperatures. >> no challenge poses a greater threat to our future and future generations. >> reporter: but president trump once called climate change a hoax, and e.p.a. administrator scott pruitt recently denied a direct link between carbon dioxide and global warming. >> i would not agree that it's a primary contributor to the global warming that we see. >> reporter: in 2016, the supreme court blocked mr. obama's clean power plant after more than 20 states complained it exceeded federal law. scott, mr. trump's order urges all federal agencies to suspend or revise any rule he believes unduly burdens domestic energy production. >> pelley: major garrett, thanks. after the president's announcement today, the democratic governors of california and new york said that they would continue to impose state laws limiting carbon in the atmosphere.
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20% of americans live in one of those states, and john blackstone met one of them, a climate scientist who sent mr. trump a warning. >> reporter: climate scientist ben santer has long believed that with temperatures rising and glaciers melting climate >>ange denial would met away. >> boy, how naive were we? >> reporter: now he's faced with a new president raising old doubts. >> a lot of it's a hoax. it's a hoax. >> imagine you spend your entire life trying to do one thing, and then someone comes along and says, everything you have done is a hoax or a conspiracy or is worthless. epat do you do with that? >> reporter: in the 1990s, santer became one of the first scientists to analyze all the climate data and reach what at the time was a startling conclusion. >> the balance of evidence suggests a discerning human influence on global climate. like it or not, i was the guy
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who carried the can for that finding. >> reporter: santer wrote an open letter to then-president- elect trump urging him not to listen to ignorant voices. he says scientists have proven again and again that arguments made by climate change deniers are wrong. >> the zombie arguments take on a life of their own once they're out there. they keep on coming back, and you can't slay them. that's the frustration. the alternative facts, it's not a hoax. this matters to every american. >> reporter: now climate change funding is on the federal chopping block. what happens to those whientists? what happens to you? >> if the funding goes away, it will be difficult for me to do my job. >> reporter: difficult, he says, but not impossible, since much of sander's research is covered by grants. what worries him more, he says, is a new climate of intimidation. >> there has been a statement, "get with the program or get out." if the program is to advance
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ignorance, then i'm not with the program. >> reporter: santer would prefer to let the science speak for tsself, but he's been speaking up as other scientists are now doing. scott, on april 22nd, which not so coincidentally is earth day, thousands of scientists are tpected to join a march on leshington. >> pelley: john blackstone by the bay. chn, thank you. this morning the president tweeted and then crowed about a decision by ford to invest in michigan. car companies coming back to the u.s., mr. trump wrote. but who deserves the credit? epan reynolds found out. >> reporter: the white house drum roll began early. "big announcement by ford today," read a tweet from the president. "car companies coming back to the u.s. jobs, jobs, jobs." and it happened just three weeks witer mr. trump met with auto industry executives. as press secretary sean spicer was quick to point out. >> this adds to the growing wave
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of positive news, jobs news under the president. >> reporter: but the automaker says its billion dollar investment at three facilities is really more about plant modernization and that actual new production jobs come to about 130. the new investment was actually agreed to during the 2015 labor negotiations when barack obama was president. so is this announcement by ford today big news? >> well, they're big investment dollars, but they're dollars that we've known about since 2015 by in large. >> reporter: kristin dziczek is with the center for automotive research. >> largely what we've seen so far this year is reannouncements or finalizing announcements that had been previously made. >> reporter: after seven years of solid growth, production jobs in the u.s. auto industry have reached a peak. joe hinrichs from ford says news of any growth is still liable to get a warm welcome. >> clearly we know that there is a microscope around auto investments and manufacturing jobs. we're proud of the fact we make more vehicles in the u.s. than
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anybody else. >> reporter: ford says further expansion will depend on how successful the white house and congress are in passing tax reforms and a big new infrastructure bill. scott, an executive told us ford will be watching both efforts closely. >> pelley: dean reynolds, thanks. and late today the house, led by republicans, voted to peel back internet privacy protections. this would allow internet providers to collect and sell customers' personal information to marketers, including health data and web browsing histories. the senate passed the bill last week, and the president is expected to sign it. coming up next on the "cbs rening news," does a highway guardrail put lives at risk? and later, t.s.a. defends this pat-down of a teenage boy. age boy. knowing where you stand. it's never been easier.
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are supposed to save lives, but one type is suspected of contributing to deaths. kris van cleave is following this. >> they killed her, then they billed her. >> reporter: nearly four months nater stephen eimers's 17-year- old daughter hanna died in a violent car crash, tennessee sent a nearly $3,000 bill for repairs to the guardrail hannah's car collided with. >> it is one of the most esotionally tone-deaf acts that i think i have ever witnessed. it wasn't made out to me. it was made out to hannah. i was furious. >> reporter: last november tinnah's car veered off interstate 75, hitting an x-lite guardrail end terminal. instead of collapsing on to itself, police say the guardrail penetrated the driver's door, hitting hannah in the chest and head. she was killed instantly. hannah's death came just days after tennessee announced it would no longer use the x-lite guardrails. >> i don't understand how you
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can leave a dangerous product on the road after you have already acknowledged it. that's russian roulette. the state of tennessee chose to play russian roulette with people's lives, and my daughter is dead. >> reporter: at least four deaths in tennessee have been linked to the guardrails, prompting concerns about how those rails respond to crashes above 45mph. >> this is really an tprecedented type situation. it was one that we felt pretty strongly that we needed to remove them from the network because they could potentially pierce the vehicle. >> reporter: paul degges is from the tennessee department of transportation. he admits sending that bill was a horrible mistake. >> we certainly apologize to the family for that. >> reporter: the company that makes the x-lite, lindsay transportation solutions, says it has passed all federal crash and safety tests. scott, the company adds it is widely known that no guardrail can protect against all high- speed crashes. >> pelley: kris van cleave,
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thanks. and we'll be right back. allergy symptoms distracting you?
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before you begin an aspirin regimen. bayer aspirin. >> pelley: the t.s.a. is >> pelley: the t.s.a. is now sesorting to more aggressive screening of passengers who fail an initial check at airports. one of these new pat-downs was recorded at d.f.w. airport, and we asked omar villafranca to get the story behind it. >> reporter: jennifer williamson started recording as the t.s.a. dilled aside her 13-year-old son aaron for additional screening after he left his laptop in his bag. then for two minutes performed the new pat-down procedure on the boy. >> i do think that as a young child that posed no threat, that had already passed an x-ray screening, that it was completely unnecessary. >> reporter: williamson said she informed the agents her son has a sensory processing disorder which makes him sensitive to touch, but...
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>> we were told in no uncertain terms we could submit to the pat-down or we could be escorted out of the airport. >> reporter: in a statement to cbs news, the t.s.a. says all soproved procedures were followed to resolve an alarm of the passenger's laptop. the t.s.a. implemented the new thorough pat-down procedure after a 2015 audit showed that agents had failed to detect handguns and other weapons at security checkpoints. travelers like emily marucci don't mind the extra scrutiny. >> i guess to me it's okay to make sure everyone is safe. there have been a lot of incidents at airports recently. he reporter: williamson says she understands the need for safety but is upset that her son wasn't given any other screening options. on a child in that situation should be handled more delicately. >> reporter: williamson has filed a formal complaint with the t.s.a. about the pat-down that happened here at d.f.w. airport, but, scott, she says
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she has not heard back from the agency. >> pelley: omar villafranca, thanks. a former first lady gets a marriage proposal. her answer next. >> this portion of the "cbs evening news" is sponsored by: ,,
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>> pelley: newly discovered letters to and from a former first lady go up for auction tomorrow. here's mark phillips. >> reporter: an old, battered briefcase containing the secrets of two battered lives. a case full of letters between a inrmer british ambassador to washington and a widowed woman he knew well, a woman named jackie kennedy. >> the minute we cracked open the boxes, i saw her loopy handwriting and her loopy js,
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and i immediately knew it was jackie kennedy. >> reporter: auction curator matthew haley found the letters locked away in a british country home when the house's contents were put up for sale. to understand them, you have to roll back the clock to the camelot years when david ormsby- gore, an old friend of j.f.k.'s, was british ambassador to washington and the kennedys and the ormsby-gores were great friends. then fate took over. a few years after j.f.k. was killed, ormsby-gore's wife sylvia died, too, in a car crash. maybe it was their common tragedies or their friendship or their mutual affection, but in the following years, jackie and david became an item. they vacationed together here in cambodia. the salutations on the letter, dear david, dear, dear david, dearest david. are these love letters? >> i think they are, particularly the way she signs off. l e says, "with all my love."
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i think there is a real warmth there. >> reporter: the letters contain no marriage proposal, but there's a clear sign one was made and rejected. when jackie decides to marry aristotle onassis instead, ormsby-gore writes as a bitter, heartbroken man. "as for your photograph," he says, "i weep when i look at it." her last letter to him has a touch of finality and, it must be said, cruelty. >> she's writing to him from aristotle onassis' yacht. >> from the yacht. >> with a greek stamp and the stationary of his yacht, the "christina." >> reporter: and that was that, or was it? when david ormsby-gore died 17 years later, also in a car crash, jackie went to his funeral. mark phillips, cbs news, london. >> pelley: and for all of us, cbs news all around the world, good night. captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by
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back in the bay area. new at six: her impassioned speech, and promising to where some see a dark vision of carnage i see a light shining on creativity and opportunity. hillary clinton back in the bay area. new at 6:00, her impassioned speech and how she is promising to keep up the fight. good evening i'm allen martin. >> i'm veronica de la cruz. it was one of hillary clinton's first major speeches after the election. >> around 6,000 people mostly women packed a ballroom at the masoni to hear clinton speak. she also called on women to get active. >> it is great to be back in san francisco. >> reporter: at the annual conference of professional businesswomen of california, former secretary of state hillary clinton was welcomed with an enthusiastic standing ovation. >> there's no place i would rather be than here with you
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other than the white house. >> reporter: she talked about the persistence of subtle sexism. >> i bet that all of you have the experience of saying something in a meeting that gets ignored. 10, 20 minutes later a man says the same thing and it's brilliant. i thought, little slow on the up tick but good idea. >> reporter: she talked about not so subtle sexism. she mentioned that bill o'reily said that maxine waters was wearing a james brown wig. >> i mean it's not like i didn't know all the nasty things they were saying about me. some of them were actual

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