tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC January 3, 2018 5:30pm-6:01pm PST
>> that's going to do it here. up next with lester holt with nightly news. see you at 6:00. tonight, an ugly war of words explodes between president trump and former top aide steve bannon. bannon calling donald trump jr.'s meeting with russians treasonous, one of several startling new accusations. >> did the president's son, donald trump jr., commit treason? >> i think that's a ridiculous accusation. >> president trump blasting back saying bannon has lost his mind. also tonight, fear and fallout from the president taunting kim jong-un on twitter boasting that his nuclear button is bigger. bracing for impact from the so-called bomb cyclone bearing down on the eastern seaboard with hurricane-force winds. blizzard warnings in effect. a billion-dollar battle over the way millions listen to music. could it change the
way you stream your favorite songs? and the pot rush in california where recreational weed is now legal and start-ups are getting creative to cash in. this is nbc "nightly news" with lester holt. good evening, everyone. thank you for joining us. there is no love lost between president trump and his former chief strategist steve bannon tonight after bannon was quoted in a forthcoming new tell-all book accusing the president's son of a treasonous act and suggesting the special counsel investigation may be on the right track. the book, based on 200 interviews, has president trump firing back saying bannon, one of the early architects of the trump presidency, has lost his mind. our peter alexander has much more. >> reporter: tonight, explosive new claims from steve bannon insisting that controversial 2016 trump tower meeting between the president's son and a group of russians was treasonous and unpatriotic, noting trump jr., jared kushner and paul manafort, all in attendance, should have called the fbi
immediately. did the president's son, donald trump jr., commit treason? >> i think that's a ridiculous accusation. >> reporter: bannon, who didn't join the campaign for another two months, asserts there's zero chance trump junior didn't introduce his russian guest to his father. they're going to crack don junior like an egg on national tv, bannon warns. the white house has said the president first learned about the meeting a year later. trump today fuming. >> i think furious, disgusted would probably certainly fit when you make such outrageous claims and completely false claims against the president, his administration and his family. >> reporter: the president unloading in an extraordinary blistering statement. steve bannon has nothing to do with me or my presidency. when he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind. adding, steve doesn't represent my base. he's only in it for himself. but president trump showered bannon with praise shortly after his departure. >> steve's been a friend of mine for a long time. i like steve a lot. >> reporter: bannon gives credence to the special counsel's probe.
this is all about money laundering noting manafort's indictment arguing robert mueller is going after the president by zeroing in on some of those closest to him. >> this may be strategic by bannon to try and demonstrate that he had no part in conduct that he may perceive as risky by other members of the trump team. >> reporter: "fire and fury" reportedly based on more than 200 interviews, many conducted inside the west wing, also reignites questions about mr. trump's view of women reportedly calling an aide hope hicks a piece of tail in front of her. and using a vulgar expletive to describe sally yates, the active attorney general, who he would go on to fire. as for his inauguration day, the soon-to-be president, michael wolff writes was angry feeling slighted by the obamas. and celebrities who refused to perform for him. bearing the brunt, melania trump who, according to the book, seemed on the verge of tears. the first lady's office dismissing it all as fiction. wolff claims first daughter ivanka and husband jared kushner
have entertained their own political future agreeing she'd be the one to run for president. the author also airing dirty laundry about the president's unusual habits and demands, reprimanding the housekeeping staff for picking up his shirt saying if my shirt's on the floor, it's because i want it on the floor. >> peter, a lot packed in there. you mentioned paul manafort. tonight, we're learning he's suing robert mueller and the justice department. why? >> reporter: that's right. manafort filing that lawsuit against mueller and jeff sessions' deputy at the justice department who greenlighted hiring mueller as special prosecutor. manafort's lawyers are arguing that the investigation is basically illegal, that mueller's authority is too broad. the suit claims mueller's been given carte blanche to look into anything he stumbles across, no matter how remote. lester? >> peter alexander at the white house tonight, thank you. all this coming as president trump escalates his feud with kim jong-un. the president taunting kim on twitter warning that he has a, quote, much bigger and more
powerful nuclear button than the north korean leader does. nbc white house correspondent kristen welker has the details. >> reporter: tonight, tensions between north and south korea seeming to decrease, the two bitter enemies talking on a dmz hot line for the first time in two years, but president trump now raising that temperature in a fiery tweet after kim jong-un threatened he had a nuclear button and the u.s. in his range. president trump writing, will someone from his depleted and food-starved regime please inform him that i, too, have a nuclear button, but it is a much bigger and more powerful one than his, and my button works. the tweet sending shock waves including from former vice president joe biden. >> the only war that's worse than one that's intended is one that's unintended. this is not a game. it's not presidential. >> reporter: former national security officials say tone matters. >> the danger with bellicose language or imprecise language via tweet or otherwise is that you run the risk
of escalation, you run the risk of miscalculation and at a time of tension with north korea can be very dangerous. >> reporter: tonight, defending the tweet, the white house questioning the, quote, mental fitness of the north korean dictator. isn't it dangerous for the president to be taunting him on twitter? >> i don't think that it's taunting to stand up for the people of this country. i think what's dangerous is to ignore the continued threats. >> reporter: sarah, it's a taunting tweet to say that he has a larger nuclear button. >> i think it's just a fact. >> reporter: while kim jong-un claims to have a nuclear button, the reality in the u.s. -- there isn't one. instead, president trump is followed at all times by a nuclear football. this briefcase carried by military officials with codes that could transmit a launch order. all of it would involve a conversation between the president and his top military officials. >> the president's very well aware of how the process works and what the capacity of the united states is.
and i can tell you that it's greater than that of north korea. >> reporter: some foreign policy experts warn today's conversation between north and south korea and the possibility of future talks could undercut the united states' relationship with south korea, but officials here dispute that and stress the strong bond between the u.s. and its ally. lester? >> all right, kristen welker, thank you. now to our other big story we're following, the major storm bearing down on the eastern seaboard. blizzard warnings now up along parts of the northeast coast after ice and snow moved over the southeast today. a so-called bomb cyclone taking aim with hurricane-force winds and the brutal cold is already being blamed for contributing to at least 20 deaths. in a moment we'll have the very latest forecast, but first here's nbc's catie beck in the storm zone. >> reporter: the year's first major snowstorm bringing the south to a standstill. >> we're not moving anywhere anytime soon. >> reporter: whiteout conditions on south carolina highways and in georgia, hazards
and headaches for drivers stuck on i-95. some braving the cold to walk their pets on the highway. >> say cheese. >> reporter: for southerners, a sight seldom seen. >> so we got to get in. >> reporter: this icy bridge in charleston shut down. too treacherous for traffic. >> i'm stuck, and i can't get home. >> this is amazing! >> reporter: even frigid in the sunshine state. tallahassee seeing its first measurable snowfall in 28 years. >> it is snowing. >> reporter: in florida, three water attractions including the one at disney world remain closed today. major airlines waive change fees for flights in the northeast and more than a dozen airports in the south. is this snow the talk of the ship today? is this what everybody is talking about? >> it is. >> reporter: a blizzard warning for southeastern virginia. in norfolk, the world's largest naval station. >> the jet stream coming in the back end of this system.
>> reporter: assessing threats for ships and the planes that land on them. >> you must understand your environment if you have any chance of succeeding in any mission. >> reporter: in new york and new england, rivers are turning to ice. homes battling bursting pipes and crews spreading salt and sand combating crippling conditions on their way up. >> this is bombogenesis, which means that we're going to have exceptionally strong winds. >> reporter: here in norfolk, we're expecting heavy snowfall overnight possibly up to 8 inches combined with hurricane-force winds. that's before this storm continues north tomorrow morning. lester? >> catie beck thanks. north is where we travel right now. nbc meteorologist dylan dreyer is in boston where they're expected to get walloped. dylan, where is this thing going and how much snow are we talking about? >> well, it is headed this way, lester. this storm is going to undergo a period of rapid intensification tomorrow. that's the word bombogenesis everybody has been talking about. in the meantime, we have light snow continuing to fall across the carolinas.
we have blizzard warnings extending from carolina all the way up into new england. the snow will overspread virginia tonight, then we're looking at steadier snow in philadelphia and new york city tomorrow morning. the heaviest of the snow expected in new england mid-morning lasting through mid-afternoon. we can see as much as 6 to 9 inches of snow in norfolk, virginia, up to 2 to 5 in philadelphia, 5 to 7 inches in new york city but closer to a foot of snow here in boston. because of that bombogenesis, we can see winds up to 65 miles per hour tomorrow afternoon. that's why we're expecting whiteout conditions and the possibility of widespread power outages and damage. it's also going to usher in some of the coldest temperatures we've seen so far this season. lester. >> dylan, thanks. as you were speaking new york city officials say no school in new york tomorrow because of the snow. the senate's two newest members, a pair of democrats, have now been sworn in. doug jones took the oath of office accompanied by former vice president joe biden. jones won last month's contentious special election in alabama over roy moore. also sworn in today, minnesota's tina smith, replacing al
franken who resigned amid sexual harassment allegations. the music streaming service spotify used by millions of americans has just been hit with a massive lawsuit involving some of the biggest names in music like neil young, stevie nicks and the late tom petty, alleging spotify isn't paying songwriters their fair share. jo ling kent explains what it could mean for music lovers. ♪ and i'm free ♪ free falling >> reporter: the iconic songs by tom petty -- ♪ free falling >> reporter: the doors. ♪ come on baby light my fire ♪ >> reporter: and the black keys. ♪ gold on the ceiling ♪ >> reporter: now at the center of a massive $1.6 billion lawsuit against music streaming giant spotify. wixen the music publishing company behind the famous artists alleges spotify has built a billion-dollar
business on the backs of songwriters and publishers whose music spotify is using in many cases without obtaining and paying for the necessary licenses. wixen is now seeking damages of $150,000 per song for over 10,000 songs. spotify which is worth a reported $20 billion declined to comment on the lawsuit. the service can expose artists to 140 million users, 60 million pay $10 a month for the premium service. >> i enjoy that i pay so little for it. that's why i use it over buying the songs on itunes. >> i don't think they'll end up raising their prices because they've got two very strong competitors in apple and amazon. if they raise their prices to $12 a month, well, you can get it somewhere else for $10 a month. >> reporter: today, news also breaking that spotify plans to go public later this year. analysts say this new lawsuit could strike a sour note with investors. jo ling kent, nbc news, los angeles. appearing in court today, the suspect accused of a prank 911 call that ended in the death of an innocent kansas man. the 28-year-old victim was shot by police on
his doorstep in what's now believed to be the first deadly case of its kind in the country. nbc news national correspondent miguel almaguer explains. >> number 63 on the extradition calendar. >> reporter: tyler barriss' court appearance today was brief, authorities working to extradite the 25-year-old from los angeles to wichita, where police body camera footage captured the fatal gunshot that killed andrew finch when officers responded to his home after this 911 call. >> they were arguing and i shot him in the head, and he's not breathing anymore. >> reporter: the call was a hoax. police say barriss placed it after losing a video game. finch, who had no connection to barriss, was unarmed and unsuspecting when authorities say he appeared to reach for his waistband. >> like i said, it's an active investigation. >> reporter: investigators say barriss has a record of fake calls known as swatting, which can trigger a s.w.a.t.-like response.
the victim's family says the officer who fired the fatal shot is also to blame. >> there was no threat, and the officer shot and killed andy finch unjustifiably. justice is going after the officer that shot that bullet into andy finch. >> reporter: tonight, a young father is dead. >> i keep thinking that this is a dream. i'm going to wake up and he's going to be here. >> reporter: after a prank call from a stranger 1300 miles away. miguel almaguer, nbc news, los angeles. there's a lot more to tell you about tonight. still ahead, high profits inside the new start-ups that are hoping to capitalize big time on california's new pot gold rush. also, how all your unwanted holiday gifts are adding up and smashing records today. we'll be back.
we're back with a brand-new pot rush in the golden state. as of january 1st, recreational weed is now legal in california, and a slew of start-ups are sprouting up and hitting the road to cash in on the cannabis. nbc's jacob soboroff takes us along for the ride. >> reporter: with cannabis now legalized in california, businesses are now springing up that do a lot more than just sell people weed to smoke. >> usually on a day like this there's 100 to 200 drivers. >> reporter: eaze is a weed delivery start-up hoping california's move from medical to recreational pot will pay off. >> simply download our app and then you're able to shop and a delivery driver will arrive on average in around 20 to 30 minutes. >> reporter: what did you do before you were working at eaze? >> i was an operations supervisor for u.p.s. >> reporter: i just noticed across the street there's a u.p.s. delivery truck. there's two of them right there.
do you see a day when there will be eaze delivery trucks of that size driving around the state of california? >> definitely. definitely. >> reporter: in san francisco this couple operates a cannabis catering business from her house. >> this is the crushed cannabis i have and put in here. it's been simmering in here for four hours already. >> reporter: the amount that you use just depends on how high you want to get? >> yep. >> reporter: monica and scott hope to capitalize on legal pot and the growing ranks of foodies. >> i think in california where we have so much innovation and a focus on food i think we'll see tons of cannabis-related cuisines. >> if you want to incorporate it into your daily life, it should extend into more healthy options. >> reporter: are we going to see jamba juice with cannabis one day? >> i would love that. >> reporter: an enthusiasm shared by many who hope selling green means making it, too. with $5 billion in legal cannabis sales this year alone, that is lots of money to be made. but with banks
tonight, the mormon church is mourning the loss of its leader for more than a decade. thomas monson rose from a young church bishop to the president of the church of jesus christ of latter-day saints. considered a prophet by nearly 16 million mormons around the world. condolences pouring in today including from well-known mormons mitt romney and marie osmond. monson died at his home in salt lake city. he was 90 years old. a scare today at the home of bill and hillary clinton. fire erupted at their chappaqua, new york, compound at a secret service facility that
is not connected to the main house, according to a spokesman for hillary clinton. the secret service's fire extinguishers were used to suppress the fire and firefighters assured that it was out. the clintons were not home. no injuries reported. the cause is unclear. the holiday rush is over and after the holiday rush, naturally comes the post-holiday rush. an expected record-setting number of returns on their way back to the store roughly $90 billion worth. by one estimate u.p.s. expects to move 6 million returns this week and 1.4 million today alone which they dubbed national returns day. when we come back, lottery fever. your shot at a pair of historic $400 million jackpots. station..
finally, there's still time to get tickets for tonight's massive powerball drawing, but if you miss out, you can still play friday's mega millions. for the first time ever, both have jackpots over $400 million at the same time. our joe fryer with more now on lottery fever times two. >> reporter: much of the country might be shivering beneath a bitter blanket of cold, but winter's worst can't withstand the heat of lottery fever. >> the cold weather never stops me. i still keep going and going and going. >> reporter: still, it's hard not to dream of a lotto-funded escape. >> hawaii is fabulous! we all would love to be there now. >> reporter: tonight's powerball jackpot is $460 million while friday's mega millions is now $418 million. so, if you can only buy one ticket, which game do you choose? the odds of winning the powerball are 292 million to 1, slightly better than mega
millions 303 million to 1. and for the supergreedy, the odds of winning both, 1 in 88 quadrillion. that's 15 zeros. >> we have the winning tickets right here. >> reporter: low chances. >> very slim. >> reporter: high hopes. >> i am feeling very lucky. i'm oozing with luck. >> reporter: if you do win the powerball, what will 460 million get you? how about 46 minutes worth of super bowl ads or, if you really want to beat the cold, you can buy this island in the bahamas, 18 times over. truly warm wishes. joe fryer, nbc news. >> and good luck if you're playing. we appreciate you spending part of your evening with us. that's "nightly news" for this wednesday night. i'm lester holt. for all of us at nbc news, thank you for watching and good night. the east bay: a shooou
right now at 6:00, we're following breaking news in the east bay. a shooting outside of a bart station. this is video moments after the shots were fired in the heart of the evening commute. we're live on the scene with the latest. the news at 6:00 starts right now. thanks for being with us. >> we have been tracking this breaking news on air and online for the past hour. sky ranger over ahead right now. this is unfolding at the west oakland bart station which is on chester and 7th in oakland. this is what we know. at 4:41 this afternoon, two men
outside across the street from the oakland bart station were shot by a bart police officer in uniform. an on duty part police officer. oakland pd is in charge of this investigation. we do not know what prompted the shooting. the two men were injured and have been transported to a local hospital. at this point it's not clear if it's highland hospital or another. we know the men sustained injuries and have been moved. this is not impacting the bart rail system at this point. there's a heavy police presence. want to show you a video off of instagram that happened just moments after the shooting happened. this happening right before 5:00 at the heart of the commute. two people shot by an on duty bart police officer. the details of how it unfolded are still coming into the news room. we have jodi hernandez heading to
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