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tv   NBC Nightly News  NBC  January 2, 2013 5:30pm-6:00pm PST

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on the broadcast tonight, the deal finally gets done. a rescue from the fiscal cliff. tonight, what the new law will mean for you and why the victims of superstorm sandy feel left in the lurch. out of the hospital. late word tonight that hillary clinton has been released from the hospital. constant craving. is one of the most popular ingredients in the american diet making us overeat. tonight, what ntists are able to see for the first time. and making a difference. rebuilding a great american city with a simple bowl of soup and a lot of good ideas. "nightly news" begins now. from nbc news world headquarters in new york, this is "nbc nightly news" with brian williams. >> good evening, i'm kate snow
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in tonight for brian. after weeks of negotiations and last-minute hold-ups over the fiscal cliff, congress late last night finally passed an agreement on taxes and spending. in a moment, we'll tell you what that legislation means for every american. but it's what the house did not do last night that caused an uproar today. lawmakers left before considering a bill to help victims of superstorm sandy, and that had republicans from hard-hit states taking aim at leaders of their own party. nbc's kelly o'donnell is at her post on capitol hill once again tonight. kelly, good evening. >> reporter: good evening, kate. so the house had not taken any kind of vote on a new year's day in nearly 60 years. and when they did so, they got that tax deal done, but only minutes later, a new controversy popped up, over government spending. and it spread through here furiously, and with real impact. new york and new jersey got angry and got action over emergency funding that was being delayed. it was a midnight surprise.
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>> the ayes have it. accordingly, the house stands adjourned. >> reporter: boos and jeers erupted when help for hurricane sandy victims was abruptly put on hold. >> absurd! absolutely absurd! >> reporter: two months after heart-wrenching devastation plowed across the northeast, thousands of homes and businesses wiped out. >> don't turn your back on the victims of sandy. >> we have americans out there that cannot provide for themselves. that have been devastated, that need a helping hand. >> reporter: a promised vote on a $60 billion federal relief package was postponed. house speaker john boehner had quietly decided the house should not pass billions more in spending, the same night of the fiscal cliff battle over the government's deficit. stunned democrats and republicans could not believe that their hometown suffering could be ignored. >> this is time to stop debating and take the gloves off. jersey style.
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>> i think it's inexcusable that we did not have this vote. >> reporter: even boehner's allies, like new york republican peter king revolted. >> we cannot believe that this cruel knife in the back was delivered to our region. >> reporter: the outrage reverberated. from his hawaii vacation, the president phoned the governors of new york and new jersey. >> 66 days and counting. shame on you. shame on congress. >> reporter: in his blunt style, new jersey's governor chris christie said congress betrayed them. >> there is no reason for me at the moment to believe anything they tell me. >> reporter: under intense pressure, boehner quickly relented. he met with members from the northeast and they got results. a vote on some emergency aid this friday. >> we're getting what new york and new jersey need, and that's all that counts. >> reporter: so boehner promised that this friday, the new congress will vote on $9 billion in flood insurance, emergency aid. and then in a couple weeks, they'll look at a $50 billion
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package. he also did have a conversation with governor christie. and, again, kate, all of this is against a backdrop of a congress struggling to deal with government spending at a time when there are these real-world emergencies. kate? >> kelly o'donnell on capitol hill again tonight. many of the people who live and work in areas devastated by sandy are frustrated and furious tonight that they have to wait even one moment longer to get the help they desperately need. nbc's anne thompson reports from new york's hard-hit long beach. >> reporter: where the reminders of sandy are still all too vivid, today frustration turned to fury. >> we need funds, and we need help. >> reporter: stephanie and elliot zuckerman are fed up. they learned today their once meticulous home in long beach, new york is crawling with mold left by sandy. >> this is mold. >> that's mold. >> reporter: facing a $75,000 expense and what they say is the run-around from fema and insurers, the house of representatives' failure to vote is just one more body blow. >> no matter how together you
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try to keep it, it's an emotional thing. and then to know that you're not backed by the country that you live in. >> the pace of congressional aid is glacial compared to other disasters. when katrina tore through the gulf coast in 2005, congress responded with more than $61 billion of aid in just ten days. hurricane ike took 12 days. new jersey governor chris christie says sandy's victims can't wait any longer. >> talk to the people down in union beach. talk to the folks at toms river. talk to the people in lavallette. ask them if another two weeks matters to them in their lives. >> reporter: anger that crosses state lines. >> it's a shame and tragedy, because they're putting politics before people. >> reporter: on the outside, things are getting better. there is progress. but it's inside where you realize how many people are so very close to the breaking point. and that's where stephanie zuckerman is. >> i guess there's no help, and
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nobody cares. it's very traumatizing. >> reporter: their stake in this world is damaged, and so is their faith in their government. anne thompson, nbc news, long beach, new york. back now to the congressional deal on the fiscal cliff. it will hit home for every american in the new year. nbc's tom costello now with more on what it means for you. >> reporter: regardless of your income, your taxes are sure to rise in 2013. with the social security payroll tax holiday expiring, those taxes will go up 2%, back to where they were in 2009. that means the armstrong family, making $50,000 a year, close to the national median, can expect to pay another $1,000 a year in taxes. while the smith family, earning $100,000, will pay an extra $2,000 a year. craig carnick is a certified financial planner in denver. >> there's no question that the extra $100 a month, $150 a month
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will hit the average american in the pocketbook. but the good news is that inflation is under control, gas pump prices are down. >> reporter: still, many americans who have struggled through a rough economy have counted on that extra 2%. >> there are a lot of people that the only pay increase they saw in the last two years was that payroll tax holiday. now that it's going away, it's going to squeeze consumer buying power. >> reporter: other tax changes, higher income families will lose some their deductions and families earning more than $450,000 will see their top tax rate go up to 39.6%. their investment income will also be taxed at a higher rate. the good news for business owners, the full package of temporary tax breaks will be extended for yet another year. with more certainty in the tax code, wall street rallied today. a good day for most families with retirement investment accounts. in chicago, mixed reaction to america's newest tax plan. >> nobody wants any money coming out of their paycheck. but you've got to pay for stuff. >> i think these are all just temporary bandages, i don't
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think they're really going to help. >> reporter: one note of caution. accountants say it could take weeks for companies to adjust employees' paychecks to the new law. the first few checks could be higher than checks a month or two down the road. tom costello, nbc news, washington. the budget deal leaves a lot of questions unresolved, but for today, anyway, the financial markets seemed to love it. the dow soared more than 300 points, its best day since december 2011. the nasdaq and s&p 500 were also sharply higher. late news tonight that secretary of state hillary clinton, hospitalized since sunday for a potentially dangerous blood clot, has been released and is heading home from the hospital. nbc's andrea mitchell is in our washington bureau with more. good evening, andrea. >> reporter: good evening, kate. it is all good news to report tonight about the secretary of state. her staff reports that her medical team advised her she is making good progress on all fronts. and they are confident she will make a full recovery, according to their statement. she says she is eager to get back to the office and was already today on the phone with
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her staff. this afternoon, a smiling hillary clinton walking on her own steam was seen coming out of one of the many buildings in the hospital complex, the harkness eye institute, accompanied by her husband bill and daughter chelsea and a deputy chief of staff. clinton had been driven over and back to the hospital, where that led to some confusion earlier over where she had already been discharged. that wasn't true at the time. still even after doctors regulate the dosage of her blood thinning medication, it will be a while before she is back to work full time. that does put on hold any testimony on benghazi, and raises questions also because republicans have said they won't confirm john kerry to succeed her as secretary of state until the new congress forms committees and can hear directly from clinton about benghazi. that, of course, could change, given her illness. kate? >> andrea mitchell in washington with the very latest. overseas, a deadly new attack today in syria. a government fighter jet fired on a gas station in a damascus suburb where people had been lining up for fuel.
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that triggered a massive explosion there. activists say dozens of people were killed. a new report by the united nations puts the death toll in syria after 21 months of civil war at 60,000. that is far higher than even the rebels themselves had estimated. here at home, it is back to school tomorrow for the students who survived that horrific shooting at their school in newtown, connecticut, nearly three weeks ago now. their backpacks, desks and other belongings have been moved to a different school in a town six miles away, where neighbors have rolled out the welcome mat, and their classrooms have been precisely recreated. asked about security at the new building, police today said right now, quote, it has to be the safest school in america. the largest natural disaster of 2012, the record drought, is persisting into the new year. and tonight there's big trouble on the mighty mississippi. it's becoming impossible for barges to move on some parts of the river. nbc's kevin tibbles reports on the cargo that is high and dry.
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>> reporter: the mighty mississippi. so parched and dry that shipping could grind to a halt by week's end. >> we'll soon be hitting record low water levels that we have not seen within the middle mississippi river. >> reporter: drought conditions have failed to replenish the mississippi where in places water levels have dropped 10 feet in 6 months. in thebes, illinois near st. louis, the u.s. army corps of engineers is dredging and blasting the river bottom to help keep shipping lanes open. everything from oil to cement to chemicals, to 60% of u.s. grain exports moved down this river. >> it's a major artery to the gulf coast, no doubt. all the exports go down this river to the center gulf. >> reporter: and this artery is clogged. >> it is clogged up. >> reporter: a typical tow boat moves 15 loaded barges. it would take six locomotives pulling 216 rail cars, or 1,050 tractor-trailers to move the same amount of goods.
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so it's clear how vital the river is to the nation's commerce. operators say if the mississippi doesn't get any precipitation in the next few days, it's going to be too shallow for tow boats to operate, bringing shipping to a standstill. george foster, who runs tugs up and down the mississippi has already tied up some of his fleet. >> we're predicting to go another two feet lower than we are right now. >> reporter: shippers want the army corps of engineers to temporarily release water from the missouri river to raise levels on the mississippi, and offset any slow down in trade. >> we are already hearing about potential layoffs at manufacturing facilities, waterside and landside facilities. and just for january alone, we estimate that 8,000 jobs are going to be impacted. >> reporter: america's shipping super highway, now struggling to keep afloat. kevin tibbles, nbc news, on the mississippi river, near st. louis. still ahead, as "nbc nightly news" continues, why an ingredient that's everywhere in
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the american diet could be the enemy of that new year's resolution to lose weight. and later, bringing back an american city. making a difference, one bowl at a time.
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back now with health news that almost sounds ready-made for all those new year's resolutions about losing weight. for the first time, scientists have been able to see what happens to our brains when we eat or drink a form of sugar called fructose, which is added to all kinds of processed foods
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and drinks. consumption of fructose has risen dramatically since the 1970s, and so has obesity. here's chief medical editor, dr. nancy snyderman. >> it's that time of year. >> i have lost 101 pounds. >> try our entrees, snacks and new salads. >> no matter what the program, the culprit that sabotages your diet might be at the tip of your tongue. a new study shows that fructose is affecting how our brains deal with hunger. fructose is found in almost everything, from processed foods to sugary sodas. >> the amount of fructose that people have consumed in the last few decades is tripled or quadrupled, compared to what they were eating a century ago. >> in an article in the journal of the american medical association, researchers studied mri scans of the brain after people consumed either fructose or glucose. they found the part of the brain
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that deals with feeling full did not kick in when drinking fructose. >> fructose doesn't do that. it keeps you going. and so that, as a result, makes you more likely to want to eat more. >> the corn industry, which makes the sugar additive from corn, says that these findings are limited, since it is highly unusual for humans to consume this much sugar in one sitting. so how do you help yourself lose weight? >> more fruits and vegetables, more whole grains, more lean proteins and less of the processed ingredients. and cooking more of our meals at home. >> reporter: so before you pick up the latest diet book, start with a different kind of reading and read the label. and when you read that label, if you can't understand the words, consider skipping it and moving on to something else, and then all those big plates, put them in storage and move to a nine-inch plate instead. it will at least help you limit the quantity of food you eat, kate. >> good advice. nancy snyderman, thanks.
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up next, remembering an american legend whose music lives on.
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♪ how much is that doggy in the window ♪ [ barking ] ♪ the one with the waggly tail >> patti page has died with that song and others like "tennessee waltz" and "old cape cod," she became one of the biggest pop singers in the 1950s. page sold more than 100 million records in a career that spanned seven decades. she was to be honored with a lifetime achievement award at the grammys next month. patti page was 85 years old. lots of folks are taking down their christmas trees right now, usually without incident. and that was the plan this morning at the lennox square mall in atlanta. that is until part of the crane being used to take down the big tree from the roof of macy's collapsed and the tree ended up dangling over the side of the building. no injuries reported. and you won't find these next items at macy's, but have
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we got a sale to tell you about. how about a launch pad used for the space shuttles? there's word tonight that nasa is selling or renting facilities at the kennedy space center that were part of that shuttle program, which ended a year-and-a-half ago. in addition to launch pad 39a, they're selling space in the vehicle assembly building, which was first used to put together saturn 5 rockets for the apollo program. and in paris, the police are hunting for four men who decided not to buy, but to steal. their target, the flagship apple store in the city of paris. the masked gunmen forced their way in after it had closed on new year's eve. they made off with iphones, ipads and other apple products worth an estimated $1.3 million, while the police were elsewhere, helping out with new year's eve celebrations. and when we come back, making a difference. a recipe for success in one struggling american city.
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finally tonight, our "making a difference" report is from detroit, which has faced an enormous economic struggle and lost a quarter of its population
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over the last decade or so. but some who remain are fighting back with a new creativity that's beginning to show results. nbc's ron mott on one program where ideas begin with a bowl of soup. >> reporter: signs of better times are all over detroit. abandoned factories, troubling messages, marring a city many believe is simply out of gas. and yet every month, a building left for dead fills up. >> welcome to detroit soup. >> reporter: breathing the life of a comeback spirit. centered around that bowl of goodness mom promised would make us feel better. for 5 bucks, attendees also get salad, bread, and, most appetizing, a vote. a say in which company wins the modest proceeds of the evening from this nonprofit, spoonful by spoonful. amy is sort of a soup chef in charge. >> i think it's a chance to draw people together, share ideas over a simple meal and hear how
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people really want to help continue to revitalize the city. >> reporter: projects like detroit soup are bright spots in a city where blight too often dominates the landscape. and in the coming year, amy hopes to see this idea about ideas touch every neighborhood here. on this night -- >> so our big winner tonight is dch printing. so come on up here. >> reporter: a group of high school kids are the big winners. hoping that $1215.25 prize sparks a fledgling apparel business with help from university of michigan students. >> the project was about all of us working together. >> reporter: previous soup winners have gone on to much bigger and better. designer veronica scott unrolled her pitch for a winter coat turned sleeping bag into reality, a free life-safer for the city's homeless. she hired her first employee with the money and several other since, each of whom formerly lived on the streets. >> we are used to designing in a vacuum and designing in a bubble.
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but that's not what the world outside is like anymore, especially not in detroit. it's rougher and it needs different things. >> reporter: like soup. a starter course for a new direction in a city fighting for a revival. ron mott, nbc news, detroit. and that is our broadcast for this wednesday night. thanks so much for being with us. i'm kate snow in for brian williams. we hope to see you right back here again tomorrow evening. have a great night.
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right now think are us fr frustrated and angry with skyrocketing crime. the city's latest homicide is now linked to vigilanteism. live in san francisco you might want to watch what you say and do on muni. i'll tell you why coming up. good evening and thanks for joining us. i'm jessica aguirre. >> and i'm raj mathai. new at 6:00, big brother might be watching the next time you step on to


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