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tv   ABC World News Tonight With David Muir  ABC  August 15, 2017 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT

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tonight, breaking news as we come on the air. president trump doubling down, defending his response to charlottesville, waiting 48 hours before condemning racism, the kkk and white supremacists and tonight now saying there is blame on both sides. >> i think there's blame on both sides. you look at -- you look at both sides, i think there's blame on both sides. and i have no doubt about it. >> the president standing firm saying both sides should take responsibility. also tonight, the growing storm threat. the hurricane off the east coast. the track coming in and how it will affect the coastline. the horrific discovery today. the invisible danger. a father finding his entire family overcome by carbon monoxide. several rushed to the hospital, including first responders. the young mother struck by a tree in new york city central
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park. trying to protect her three children. and the former state trooper seen here shooting an unarmed black man during a traffic stop. what he told his victim in court today. good evening, and it's great to have you with us here on a tuesday night, and we begin tonight with president trump in the lobby of trump tower, spending 15 minutes late today defending his response to charlottesville. the president facing outrage after taking 48 hours to condemn racism and to call out groups by name. much of that from leaders of his own party. tonight president trump said he needed all of the facts before delivering his soresponse, and went on to say there was blame on both sides, adding the initial protesters did have a permit. abc's mary bruce was there for it all. she leads us off tonight. >> reporter: president trump today defiant and doubling down. defending his decision to wait
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48 hours after the hate-fueled violence in charlottesville, to call out the white supremacists by name. >> why did you wait so long? >> i didn't wait long. i didn't wait long. i didn't wait long. i wanted to make sure unlike most politicians, that what i said was correct. not make a quick statement. the statement i made on saturday, the first statement was a fine statement. but you don't make statements that direct unless you know the fact. it takes a little while to get the facts. you still don't want know the facts and it's a very, very important process to me, and it's a very important statement. as i said -- remember this -- saturday. we condemn in the strongest possible terms, this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence. it has no place in america, and i went on from there. >> reporter: with the backlash growing, the president did not address address the fact from the first
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lady and the vice president all condemned the racism before he did. >> so making the statement when i made it was excellent. in fact, the young woman who i hear is a fantastic young woman, her mother wrote me, and said, through, i guess, twitter, social media. the nicest things and i very much appreciated that. >> reporter: but the fallout has been swift. at least five members of the president's manufacturing council, several top ceos, all leaving. for them, the cost of doing business with the trump administration now seeming to outweigh the benefits. the ceo of walmart said you missed a critical opportunity to help bring the country together. did you? >> not at all. i think the country -- look. you take a look. i have created over 1 million jobs. the country is booming. the stock market is setting records. >> reporter: the president insisting he was right to wait to respond until he had the full story. >> there was no way of making a correct statement that early. i had to see the facts.
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unlike a lot of reporters. unlike a lot of reporters. david duke was there. i wanted to see the facts. and the facts as they started coming out, were very well stated. in fact, everybody said his statement was beautiful. if he would have made it sooner, that would have been good. i couldn't have made it sooner because i didn't know all of the facts. frankly, people still don't know all of the facts. >> reporter: three days after white supremacists marched in the streets, the president is now back to square one. again, blaming all sides. the president now labeling the counterprotesters the alt-left and saying they deserve blame too. >> what about the alt-left that came charging at the -- as you say, the alt-right? do they have any semblance of guilt? let me ask you this. what about the fact they came charging -- that they came charging with clubs in their hands, swinging clubs.
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do they have any problem? i think they do. as far as i'm concerned, that was a horrible, horrible day. wait a minute. i'm not finished. i'm not finished, fake news. that was a horrible day. i will tell you something. i watched those very closely. much more closely than you people watched it, and you have -- you had a group on one side that was bad, and you had a group on the other side that was also very violent, and nobody wants to say that. >> reporter: and what about that initial group that took to the streets on friday night? the president defend some of them too. >> i condemned neo-nazis. i condemned many different groups, but not all of to those people were neo-nazis, believe me. not all thoefz people were white supremacists by any stretch. those people were also there because they wanted to protest the taking down of the statue, robert e. lee.
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>> reporter: so i asked the president, is he putting the counterprotesters in the same category as the white supremacists? are you putting what you call the alt-left and white supremacists on the same moral plane? >> i'm not putting anybody on a moral plane. huh a group on one side and one on the other, and it was vicious and horrible. it was a horrible thing to watch, but there is another side. there was a group on this side. you can call them the left. you have just called them the left that came violently attacking the other group. so you can say what you want, but that's the way it is. i think there's blame on both sides. you look at -- you look at both sides. i think there's blame on both sides and i have no doubt about it, and you don't have any doubt about it either. and -- and -- and if you reported it accurately, you would say that. >> reporter: the president standing firm by his response and his leadership. >> the protests --
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>> and you have some very bad people in that group, but you also had people that were very fine people. on both sides. >> and mary bruce with us from outside trump tower tonight, and mary, the president made it clear he believes there is blame on both sides here. the reaction is pouring in tonight. the republican speaker of the house saying there can be no moral ambiguity. >> reporter: the speaker of the house is usually one of the president's top defenders, but he just tweeted, we must be clear. white supremacy is repulsive. this bigotry is counter to all this country stands for. there can be no moral ambiguity, and on the other side of the aisle, chris murphismurphisyingt stopped to hear potus' remarks and nearly threw up. david. >> mary bruce leading us off in new york city tonight. mary, thank you. meanwhile, did the white house now this was coming today? the chief of staff, john kelly, was off to the side during the
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news conference in trump tower, photographed by "the new york times." i want to bring in cell phone cell phone. what are you learning from your white house sources tonight? were they ready today? >> reporter: not at all. the people i'm talking to, belong among them, there's a complete sense of surprise inside this white house. surprise even that the president took questions today. that wasn't supposed to happen. you saw that picture of john kelly there, the new chief of staff, inside trump tower sort of justing looing down at the ground as the president was speaking. but i have to tell you that for some that are surprised by what happened there today, david, we're hearing from another aide that said, let trump be trump. >> he was also asked about steve bannon and his future. the president saying he never spoke to bannon about how to respond to charlottesville and about his future? hee here's what the president said? >> i like mr. bannon. he is a friend of mine, but he came on very late up. know that. i went through 17 senators, governors and won all the primary. mr. bannon came on later than that, and i like him.
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he is a good man. he is not a racist. i can tell you that. he is a good person. he actually gets a very unfair press in that regard, but we'll see what happens with mr. bannon, but he is a good person, and i think the press treats him frankly very unfairly. >> the president making no promises about steve bannon's future. >> reporter: he was asked the question about whether he has confidence, and you could hear the president. he didn't actually answer the question. the president we know has grown frustrated with steve bannon. he has openly battled with aides here in the west wing, but one source tells me it's the president's decision whether or not he stays or goes at this point. >> thank you, cecilia. the president offering a defense for some of the people who descended on charlottesville, adding they did have a permit, and david duke, liking what he heard. abc's eva pilgrim in charlott charlottesville.
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>> reporter: tonight the president appearing to support some of the protestors who descended on charlottesville virginia carrying those tiki torches in that initial protest. >> you have a lot of people who innocently came, i'd add they had permit. the other group didn't have a permit. so i onlily tey tell you this. there are two sides to a story. i thought what took place was a horrible moment for our country. a horrible moment. >> reporter: the former head of the kkk, david duke, over the weekend, tweeting a warning to the president. i would recommend you take a good look in the mirror and rememb remember it was white americans who put you in the presidency, not radical leftists. tonight duke grateful to the president for his words. president for his words. thank you president trump for your honesty and courage to tell the truth about charlottesville and condemn the leftist terrorist. one white nationalist saying the movement has helped them. >> it's up to us to take the
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initiative. >> reporter: and tonight, the fight over confederate statues is now a flashpoint. in durham overnight crowds tearing down a this statue honoring confederate soldiers. >> let me be clear, no one is getting away with what happened. we are pursuing felony charges. >> reporter: there are 700 confederate monuments like this throughout the u.s. pressure is building for many cities to move them or take them down. that fight, energizing white nationalists who want to stop them. already planning events in the coming weeks. tonight, the southern poverty law center reports that in the last three years, more than 125 new hate groups have formed. >> they are coming now more to light and coming out from the cracks because of the new election of the new administration. >> and eva pilgrim joins us live again tonight from charlottesville, and eva, there are more rallies planned around the country? >> reporter: that's right, david.
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cities and schools taking a hard look, balancing public safety and the right to free speech. texas a&m already canceling a planned white nationalist rally that was supposed to happen in september, david. >> eva pilgrim with us again tonight. thank you, eva. in the meantime, we have a major development tonight in the showdown with north korea. the war of words with kim jong-un. president trump promising fire and fury with the north koreans made any more threats against the u.s., and north korea vowing to drop bombs near guam. this message from kim saying, we will watch stupid american behavior a ribit longer and warning against reckless actions on the korean peninsula. martha raddatz was talking saying the u.s. remains at the ready. >> we have the capability to defend them against the limited attack that north korea is capable of delivering today. >> let's bring in martha raddatz from seoul, and that language would make it appear they have
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backed down at least for now, but the pentagon knows they are still a major threat. >> reporter: yes, david. it does appear kim jong-un blinked and backed away in what could have resulted in a major military conflict, but this does not in any way end the threat from this volatile dick tater. we know intelligence believes he is trying to perfect a nuclear weapon against the u.s., and military ongss mustry main on the table, david. >> reporting in from soule again tonight, thank you, martha. back at home to the invisible danger. nearly a dozen people hospitalized by dangerous levels to carbon monoxide. police and neighbors overcome after rushing inside to help, and here's abc's mara schiavocam schiavocampo. >> reporter: tonight, 11 people recovering after being trapped inside this new jersey home, poisoned by a carbon monoxide leak. officials saying they were discovered moments before it was too late.
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>> five people unconscious. possible carbon monoxide poisoning. >> reporter: officials telling abc news a father came last night home to find his wife, two young children and two adult step-kids in distress. he rushed in to pull them out. two good samaritans joining the rescue. three police officers quickly following suit. but the toxic gas so strong it made the rescuers sick too. >> the levels were higher than any norm -- i would say normal carbon monoxide incident that you would have. >> reporter: firefighters breathing through gas masks, detecting c-o levels 45 times what it usually takes to set off a carbon monoxide detector. david, it's unclear whether or not there were working carbon monoxide detecters inside the home. david? >> martha, thank youen. next tonight here, the big scare in new york city's central park. a 39-year-old was carrying a baby in a baby carrier, and pushing two more in a stroller when a tree fell on top of them.
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good samaritans and others rushing to help them. the mother suffering the most serious injury, but it is not life threatening. the children are okay. we are following the storm threat in the atlantic tonight. hurricane gert strong enough to cause rip currents to new england tonight. we are tracking that. in the meantime, severe storms in the heartland. in russellville, arkansas, and pictures coming in. and new tropical systems, and we are track it all. the concern, you're watchingology the coastline. >> correct. even though this won't affect land, northeast movement at 12 miles per hour, between 2 to 7-foot waves come along with this, and rip currents. a look at the tropical waves we're watching. we'll be watching that for the next five day. >> i have been with you on the morning and congratulations on the night. >> thank you. we move to south carolina tonight, and to a police shooting making national
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headlines. a former state trooper sentenced for shoot a driver when he reached for his license. he told him, quote, i screwed up. here's steve osunsami. >> reporter: the former state highway patrolman. >> can i see your license please? get out of the car. get out of the car. >> reporter: seen in this video gunning down a black driver before he even has a chance to show him his license is apologizing tonight, and will spend the next few years in jail. >> get on the ground. get on the ground. just got my license, you said get my license. >> reporter: a south carolina judge sentenced 34-year-old sean groubert to 12 years in prison for the shooting, but he's expected to serve three with good behavior. today he faced the man he could have killed. >> i screwed up. that's plain and simple. i have made the biggest mistake of my life. >> reporter: but back in the 2014, when he's seen here arresting levar jones for a seatbelt violation, after seriously wounding him, he was blaming the victim.
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>> why did you shoot me? >> well, you dove head first back into your car. >> reporter: groubert says he's wanted to say he's sorry in person for the last three years, but the courts required him to keep away from his victim, david. >> steve, thank you. there is much more ahead on "world news tonight" this tuesday. the home explosion rocking an american neighborhood. the blast heard miles away. several homes damaged. a couple critically injured. what authorities are now saying. and more on that accident on a movie set. the new 911 calls coming in after that motorcycle stunt turned deadly. and details about another movie stunt involving tom cruise. we'll be right back. [woman] so you're saying you didn't eat this ice cream?
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>> the actor lost control, went across the street over a curb and then through a window across the street. >> reporter: harris apparently lost control of her motorcycle during filming. this was her fifth take performing the stunt successfully 4 other times. >> just so -- is aware the stunt actor was airborne through the building. >> reporter: harris, from new york, had been racing with bikes for years. seen here two years ago when she posted her first crash on youtube. >> this was reportedly joi harris' first major film role. >> "she was fearless and relentless in her pursuit of her dream. joi will be remembered for her ground breaking career as the first african american female road racer." >> reporter: deadpool star >> reporter: ryan reynolds saying on twitter. the accident happening just after tom cruise slammed into a building. no update on cruise's condition, and just a month ago on the set of "the walking dead," a stunt man fell two stories and died, and here, investigation is under way. david? >> thank you. when we come back, the explosion rocking an american neighborhood. pictures coming in. we'll be right back. p. show me the carfax?
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>> i can not imagine what's going through his mindthousand. >> reporter: colorado rockies pitcher chad bettis is taking the mound again. his first time pitching since late last year. under the welcome signs, bettis per hour. making a remarkable comeback after a batting his toughest opponent, cancer. strike three. >> reporter: then a standing ovation. >> standing ovation for chad bett bettis. >> reporter: handshakes from his coach. >> reporter: and bear hugs from teammates. >> reporter: and win not just for chad bettis. his team family and an inspiration to others fighting cancer. >> keep going and surround yourself with people that are positive it's never really done. you are always fighting for someone next to you. >> as the sign said, bettis is back. i'm david muir. i hope to see you right back here tomorrow. until then, good
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this is the "jeopardy!" college championship.
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here are today's contestants -- a junior at the united states military academy from natomas, florida... [ cheers and applause ] a junior at stanford university from austin, texas... [ cheers and applause ] and a sophomore at macalester college from atlanta, georgia... and now here is the host of "jeopardy!" -- alex trebek! llo, ladies and gentlemen,... and welcome to the second of our quarter-final matches. after 27 years of marriage, ilife. so i'm going to begin today's program by saying happy valentine's day to my beautiful wife jean. and to all of you also. [ applause ] jennifer, viraluck. here we go into the jeopardy! round.


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