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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  October 2, 2020 2:06am-2:36am PDT

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tonight, the growin backlash after president trump's refusal to condemn white supremacy. the president stoking racist fears about immigrants at his rally, and denying knowledge of a white nationalist group after telling them to stand back and stand by. also the president threatening not to accept rule changes after his interruptions in the first debate. and rising concerns of voter intimidation after he urged his supporters to patrol the polls. also, tens of thousands of airline workers out of a job, with washington deadlocked, is there any hope of another bailout deal the death toll climbing in california's wildfire emergency, high winds, supercharging the flames.
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coronavirus on the rise in 28 states, single-day records in south dakota and wisconsin. the new warning as flu season begins. mail-in voting concerns, a republican governor today ordering several dropoff locations to shut down. from black voters, investigates qanon conspiracy theory an alarming number of voters believe who we found q's website registered to, far outside the u.s. and chrissy teigen opening up about her and john legend's heartbreaking loss. >> announcer: this is nbc nightly news with lester holt. good evening, it was perhaps the best chance for president trump to narrow joe biden's lead but tonigh trump advisers are telling nbc news that within the campaign there's a sense of lost opportunity after tuesday's debate was smothered by the president's constant interruptions. tonight mr. trump tried to find footing
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by stoking his manufactured voting fraud crisis while in minnesota last night fanning the flames of xenophobia, doing little to quell doubts about his views on race geoff bennett reports. >> reporter: president trump touting his combative and chaotic debate performance during a rally in minnesota wednesday. >> they say that we, we, all of us, won big last night. >> reporter: but tonight there are big worries among some trump aides that he squandered a chance to regain momentum in the race trump advisers telling nbc news the president failed to make inroads with undecided voters, coming off as mean and angry rather than confident and in command. the president, they say, neglected to deliver many of his planne remarks, instead sparking controversy for refusing to denounce white supremacy. >> give me a name, give me name, who would you like me to condemn? >> proud boys. >> who proud boys, stand back and stand by -- >> reporter: president trump on wednesday attempting
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to distance himself. >> i don't know who the proud boys are, i can only say they have to stand down, let law enforcement do their work. >> reporter: but hours later on that rally stage in minnesota the president stirred racist fears about immigrants with this false claim about joe biden. >> biden will turn minnesota into a refugee camp it's a disgrace what they've done to your state. >> reporter: minnesota has a large community of somalian immigrants joe biden is looking forward to the next presidential debate with a town hall format. >> i get to actually speak to real people. they ask questions and i get to stand in front of them and answer rea questions from the american people. >> reporter: the commission on presidential debates says it's making changes to the remaining debate to ensure a more orderly discussion of the issues the president today signalled he would oppose any changes to the rules while claiming that he easily won the first matchup with joe biden. with nearly every major poll showing president trump trailing biden the president is stepping
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up his efforts to undermine the integrity of the election with false attacks on voting by mail, and now taking aim at voting in person with concerns growing over a republican effort to mobilize an army of trump supporters, an estimated 50,000 volunteers, to act as election monitors in november policing polling locations across the country. looking for fraud, which experts say doesn't exist. sparking fears of voter intimidation. >> i'm urging my supporters to go into the polls and watch very carefully -- >> reporter: that's unfolding as internal department of homeland security documents exclusively obtained by nbc news reveal that officials at the agency were directed to make public comments that were sympathetic to kyle rittenhouse, the 17-year-old trump supporter charged with fatally shooting two men in kenosha, wisconsin, last month. president trump himself has suggeste rittenhouse acted in self-defense.
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>> i guess he was in very big trouble he would have been - he probably would have been killed but it's under investigation. >> do you think private citizens -- >> and geoff joins us now. texas's republican governor made a move to restrict ballot dropoff locations today. what more can you tell us about that? >> reporter: governor greg abbott is limiting dropoff locations to one per county voting rights advocates warn it could suppress thousands of votes, requirin long drives to deliver ballots. polling shows the presidential race within single digits in texas, and democrats say that's why the governor is now changing the rules. lester >> all right, geoff, and this program note, i'll be hosting a town hall with joe biden in miami kicking off our across america week where i'll visit key battleground states to talk to voters. tonight furloughs have begun for tens of thousands of airline workers. as negotiations on a new pandemic relief package drag on. blayne alexander tells us more. >> reporter: the waiting game has been unbearable for tiana davenport.
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>> the anxiety then turned into disappointment, turned into dread, turned into worry as to what am i to do now? >> reporter: she is among at least 32,000 airline workers now out of work as democrats and the white house struggle to reach a deal on covid relief after two major surgeries tiana fears losing her health insurance all together set to expire, she says, at years end. what was the mos difficult part of this wait for you >> i never imagined myself in this position and i'm pretty sure many americans don't. >> reporter: now she is desperately looking to washington. on the table, a white house aid package worth more than a trillion and a half dollars, including money for unemployment insurance, rent and mortgage assistance and covid testing. house democrats say that is not enough to help working families. >> that's why we not only have a dollars debate we have a values debate. still, i'm optimistic.
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>> nancy pelosi is not being serious. if she becomes serious then we can have a discussion here. >> reporter: with no deal in place both united and american airlines have started furloughs, a move they aim to reverse if aid comes through. american's ceo doug parker telling employees i am extremely sorry, it is not what you all deserve. today the airline workers union taking washington to task, workers lost their jobs today because the politicians who are elected to protect them failed to take action now employees like tiana are hoping it's not too late. >> i pray that congress can come to a solution to help us out. >> reporter: and other giants like delta and southwest have been able to hold off on layoffs for now. meanwhile tonigh on capitol hill, the house is voting on a separate relief bill, brought by speaker nancy pelosi worth more than $2 trillion. senate majority leader mitch mcconnell has called it outlandish lester >> blayne alexander in atlanta, thank you. in northern
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california the deadly wildfires are threatening to destroy more of wine country with high winds making it even worse. miguel almaguer is there. >> reporter: losing more ground this is what the fire fight looks like crews undermanned and overmatched as tens of thousands of homes are threatened the unstoppable infernos devouring hundreds of homes like kevin and nikki connie. >> we've lost everything >> reporter: the heartbreak is only matched by the size of the fires hopscotching through wine country. >> it's all gone it's burned. >> reporter: a school that stood for 118 years now a mangled mess of metal. this year's fire season in california has been historic for all the wrong reasons, some 4 million acres have gone up in flames, and smoke. across the state more than 7,500 structures have been destroyed. but the highest toll,
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30 lives lost. just as the air attack returns to the fire fight not everything is gone. a sheriff's lieutenant saving this home with a garden hose. and while the loss is immense, what's been saved is symbolic. flames consume this winery but these firefighters protected the only sign of hope, today returning it to its owners in some communities where the wildfire has already blown through and is no longer a threat, neighbors return home for the first time but far too often this is what they find. what looks like a war zone or a movie set. but many say in the footprint of this rubble they will rebuild. lester >> all right, miguel almaguer on the fire lines tonight, thanks. let's turn to the covid pandemic now and the troubling increase in more than half the states just as experts warn the start of flu season creates that double threat we've been hearing about with more here's gabe gutier
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surge in parts of the midwest, some hospitals in wisconsin are being forced to wait list or transfer patients. >> this is a grave, dark reminder for all of us in our state that covid-19 isn't over >> reporter: in all 28 states and puerto rico have seen a rise in covid cases over the past two weeks. >> our patients are stressed, our nurses ar stressed and our doctors are stressed. >> reporter: but in nebraska where cases are up 108% in two weeks, some business owners are defiant. >> i don't want people on my property wearing masks. because there's a lot of people that come and go, and if something comes up missing and i've got a videotape of somebody with a mask on i'll never figure out who it is. >> reporter: the -- trump administration's testing czar says the opposite >> everyone needs to be disciplined about wearing a mask it's very, very important to protect others as yourself. >> reporter: public health officials are intensifying warnings about a twindemic in the fall if people don't get their flu shots.
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>> let's not procrastinate. let's do it now. ge yourself and everyone else in your family vaccinated. >> reporter: here in kentucky the governor is sounding the alarm. after the state's second highest daily covid count since march. >> we need you to wear a facial covering. 1,018 cases ought to be a wake-up call if last week's 5,000, almost 5,000 cases wasn't >> reporter: louisville - louisville classes are virtual but some caretakers are driving to this elementary school to pick up lunches for their kids. >> i'm scared of them bringing something home, spreading it to their parents, spreading it to me. >> reporter: with the uptick in cases mary french says she's glad her grandchild's school is not reopening just yet. >> how worried are you? >> well, yeah, because i'm unemployed right now, my husband's unemployed, so it's just -- we just take it day by day, and stay home and be safe and use the mask and social distancing. >> reporter: here in kentucky the governor said today there were more than 1,500 active
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cases among college students lester >> all right, gabe, thanks. the pandemic has dramatically altered how we vote with ballots mailed to every voter in nine states, and absentee voting permitted for all in 34 more in tonight's vote watch, morgan radford on the challenges in battleground north carolina. >> reporter: christopher gibson says he's voted in every election but this year in north carolina he voted by mail for the first time. >> voting is very important. i grew up in the jim crow era. >> reporter: you decided you were going to vote no matter what. >> if i had to crawl, i would have gone. >> reporter: his mail-in ballot was rejected he was missing a witness signature. in north carolina more than a million people have requested mail-in ballots this year but the rate of rejection for mail-in ballots, those sent back because of inconsistencies is four times higher for black voters than white ones. >> we still seem to be fighting to vote, in 2020 >> reporter: here are some of the issues that county officials in election offices
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like this one are seeing, for example, some of these mail-in ballots may be missing a signature or the signature of a witness, which is something that north carolina requires. and for voters who are used to voting in person, or early, voting for the first time on a mail-in ballot could lead to some mistakes. state election officials stress the ballot review process is bipartisan. that neither the envelope nor the ballot contain information about the voter's race and voters are given a chance to correct their ballots before election day still, some voters are wary. >> making sure that i did everything right, according to the rules and making sure there's no excuses for my vote not being counted. >> reporter: to other states concern that ballots could be being rejected on that. >> there are voters all over the state and all over the country who are undergoing -- who are taking part in a mail balloting process for the very first time we're urging people, if you're going to vote by mail, do it early so that you're given a chance to correct it. >> reporter: and be counted. morgan radford, nbc news, charlotte.
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in 60 seconds our investigation into the qanon, the far right conspiracy theory, its false claims attracting more and more followers, we have an important reality check ahead.
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we're back with our nbc news investigation into qanon, the far right conspiracy movement considered a domestic terror threat by the fbi but has now grown into a political movement tom costello with our report we need to warn you these baseless theories are pretty disturbing. >> reporter: at trump rallies nationwide the "q" pops up in a sea of campaign signs. it stands for qanon, and a long list of false, outlandish and anti-semitic conspiracy theories, that big-name democrats, celebrities and the mega rich are child trafficking pedophiles who kill children and drink their blood in a satanic ritual joe biden himself a frequent target. all of it, they say, exposed in coded messages by someone deep inside the
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government named "q." >> you believe there's a ring of high profile politicians kidnapping and sacrificing children >> i do believe that. >> reporter: who's behind qanon the digital evidence shows q's website is hosted by a pig farmer in the philippines. who owns racist and pornographic websites. nbc news investigative reporter brandy zadrozny says the movement exploded with millions of members when the pandemic hit, upending lives and livelihoods. >> qanon movement and the membership has grown probably tenfold since march so we're talking thousands of groups, millions of members and it's global now as well. >> reporter: the fbi has labeled qanon a domestic terror threat in 201 a north carolina man went to prison after firing a gun in a d.c. pizza restaurant looking for the alleged pedophile cult, an internet lie. in 2018 a suspect in an armored car tried to block traffic on the hoover dam and followers routinely swamp child
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trafficking hotlines with bogus internet rumors using the hashtag save the children. >> it's distracting from the true efforts combatting human traffickin and it's also causing a lot of trauma to survivors reading a lot of this sensational drama online. >> it was the most devastating thing in my life. >> reporter: she says her fiance with two college degrees and grown children left her after becoming absorbed in q's online communities. >> he became darker, more sullen, angry i lost the guy that was funny and sweet and played practical jokes on me. >> reporter: qanon followers believe president trump is a hero. >> i understand they like me very much. which i appreciate >> reporter: secretly work you know, if i can help save the world from problems i'm willing to do it. >> reporter: the president has promoted tweets and links from qanon believers and dozens of state and congressional
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candidates have at times voiced support, including georgia republican candidate marjorie taylor green. >> "q" is a patriot, we know that for sure. >> reporter: once she won her primary race she disavowed it last month facebook and twitter removed thousands of qanon pages with millions of members, but the movement grows by the day this week a democratic congressman from new jersey said he's received death threats from qanon followers after sponsoring a resolution to condemn the movement meanwhile, experts say this is becoming a political force for the elections and they worry about potential violence in the weeks ahead. lester >> an important story to share, tom, thank you very much. up next, chrissy teigen and john legend's heartbreaking loss
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chrissy teigen is opening up tonight about her heartbreaking pregnancy loss here's kate snow >> reporter: chrissy teigen's twitter post just after midnight this morning, was heartbreaking, driving home from the hospital with no baby how can this be real on instagram intimately personal photos from her hospital bed, her husband john legend at her side, the moment they held their lost child. we are shocked and in the kind of deep pain you only hear about, the kind of pain we've never felt before, teigen wrote ♪ >> reporter: the couple first revealed this third pregnancy this summer. >> our little quarantine surprise, i guess you could say. >> reporter: they
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shared checkups on social media on september 5th telling fans she was on bedrest and then this week in the hospital in sharing the loss their shining light on something so many families experience. e in four clinically recognized pregnancies ends in miscarriage. >> i've had one miscarriage. >> i've experienced two miscarriages. >> one was in 2015 and the other happened in 2016. >> reporter: in february as part of a series called miscarriage matters we featured women, including myself, speaking about their loss. >> i got to see her take a couple breaths before she passed away. >> there's a piece of me that's died because i lost my baby yesterday. >> i think every woman who miscarries wants to know why. >> reporter: a new generation o celebrities like teigen sharing their stories, changing the age-old stigma. >> it really is a silence that has to be broken. >> you don't have to remain silent about it. >> talking about my story, you know, allowed people to help me >> reporter: teigen
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and legend thanked everyone sending positive energy, thoughts and prayers they named their son jack, writing we will always love you, on this darkest of days we will grieve, we will cry our eyes out but we will hug and love each other harder, and get through it, just as so many have. kate snow, nbc news. >> our thoughts with the couple tonight. up next, honoring a woman who's been feeding her community for decades.
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the end of an era in chicago for a woman who has served her community for so long, kevin tibbles with inspiring america. >> reporter: on chicago's west side -- >> i'm going to miss you too, mom. >> reporter: louise harper is simply mama. >> my babies is what i call it. >> reporter: after 60 years of feeding stomachs and souls she's retiring are you going to miss her? >> oh, yeah, miss her already. >> reporter: an early customer dr. martin luther king lived down the street. >> i waited on him every morning. if he needed more biscuits or more mea he'd tell me >> reporter: even clay once asked the price for a burger. >> i told him $1.35. glad to get it from me >> reporter: she's never raised her prices, a big juicy burger is still $1.35. >> my mom short of a dime, my mom short of a quarter. i still let them have it those are my babies.
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>> reporter: in tough times people know mama is there seven days a week at 3:00 a.m. before sunrise. in the twilight of her career she'll continue to pray for her neighborhood and her babies kevin tibbles, nbc news, chicago. terrific story that's nightly news. thanks for watching, everyone i'm lester holt. please take care of yourself and each other. ♪ all i want to get is ♪ a little bit closer ♪ all i wanna know is, ♪ can you come a little
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closer? ♪ ♪ here comes the breath before we get a little bit closer ♪ ♪ here comes the rush before we touch, come a little closer ♪ ♪ the doors are open, the wind is really blowing ♪ ♪ the night sky is changing overhead ♪ ♪ it's not just all physical ♪ i'm the type who won't get, oh so critical ♪ ♪ so let's make things physical ♪ ♪ i won't treat you like you're oh, so typical ♪ ♪ i won't treat you like you're oh so typical ♪ ♪ i want you close, i want you ♪ i won't treat you like you're typical ♪ ♪ i want you close, i want you ♪ i won't treat you like you're typical ♪ ♪ here come the dreams of you and me, here come the dreams ♪ ♪ here come


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