tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC October 30, 2020 2:06am-2:36am PDT
tonight, the face-off in florida. just five days until the election the campaigns collide in that crucial battleground with duelling rallies at president trump's event the heat s intense a dozen supporters taken to the hospital biden at his own event blasting the president on covid and declaring if florida goes blue it's over. our new poll, who's leading in the sunshine state. hurricane zeta turning deadly the storm racing across nine states after slamming on shore as a category 2. at least six killed, at least a million without power. some outages impacting early voting. the terror attack at a church. a man armed with a knife killing three, one victim escaping only to be chased down
what we know about the suspect. the covid surge, the u.s. hitting 9 million cases, at least 6 states breaking daily records. our exclusive access inside a covid icu in a growing hot spot. the surveillance video, thieves making off with a million dollars worth of vital ppe. caught on camera, the train carrying chemicals derailing. nearby homes and schools forced to evacuate second wave shortage fears how to find what you need to stock up on now. superspreader risks. how to keep your family safe this halloween. this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. >> good evening, everyone face-off in battleground florida tonight with the 2 electoral votes up for grabs. both president trump and former vice president joe biden hitting the ground there today with duelling rallies the pandemic central to both their messages delivered in words and contrasting images of
the rallies themselves new polling tonight shows a narrow opening for both men in a critical state littered with wreckage of presidential campaigns that met their end there. kristen welker is in florida. >> reporter: president trump and former vice president joe biden holding duelling rallies in florida and competing messages. >> thanks to our policies america is experiencing the fastest and biggest recovery. we're having the best recovery >> we need a president who's going to bring us together, not pull us apart >> reporter: speaking in tampa, president trump trying to turn the page from the pandemic. >> very much bigger than any gdp we have ever had you have to go back to the 1950s and then it's less than half. this is the greatest number >> reporter: still economists warn the recovery is showing signs of slowing down and the pandemic is intensifying the president trying to put a positive spin on the crisis. >> it is ready to happen we are making the turn we have the vaccines coming very soon. >> reporter: the first lady who joined her
his on the trail for the first time since last year. >> my husband's administration is focused on the future. [ cheering ] the health and safety of the american people. >> reporter: but the president's rally today drew thousands with little social distancing and few masks, and in a separate challenge in the 87-degree heat, multiple people passed out, 12 taken to the hospital and the president said this as a fire truck sprayed water into the crowd. >> they doing that on purpose? are they friend or foe? >> reporter: but on the other side of the state, joe biden took direct aim at the president's response. >> president trump's superspreader events, spreading more virus around the country and here in florida today. >> reporter: biden's rally, also a familiar sight on the trail with supporters socially distant and in cars all aimed at drawing a sharp distinction in a must-win state. >> right here in florida is up to you, you hold the keys.
if florida goes blue it's over. >> reporter: our latest nbc news/maris poll now has biden with a slight 4-poin lead over mr. trump in the state. 51% to 47% that's within the margin of error. early voting has also increased in the state just as president trump says without evidence it could be rigged today savannah guthrie with five former secretaries of homeland security. >> where do you stand on some of these remarks from the president? >> let me say first to be crystal clear there's no real prospect of widespread fraud in the election. >> reporter: biden is energizing supporters here in tampa tonight. president trump was scheduled to hold a rally in north carolina but forced to postpone citing the bad weather. lester >> all right kristen welker in florida tonight, thank you. the remnants of hurricane zeta hitting much of the east coast after pounding the gulf coast at least six people were killed and at least a million are without power. our morgan chesky is in louisiana
>> reporter: tonight, gulf states bruised and battered reeling from zeta. the category 2 hurricane slamming ashore in louisiana. the storm surge rushing on to streets, flooding homes, even tossing shrimp boats on to highways zeta unleashing unforgiving wind lifting then ripping homes apart. the worst of the surge hit mississippi where cars floated in a parking garage. >> it was a death frightening experience >> reporter: in alabama, joel woke up as a tree sliced into his bedroom. here in st. bernard parish, a bitter irony. this is where those who live outside the levees park trailers, trucks and boats to escape rising waters only this time zeta brought the wind >> you thank god you weren't in it. wetzel's trailer a total loss the father of two comforting his kids who salvaged what they could. >> i think it breaks my heart more for them than it does for me. >> reporter: tonight, zeta leaves more than a million people without power.
and polling locations suddenly dark. >> we all feel confident that we will be able to here in st. bernard parish at least to get the polls up and running for tuesday. >> reporter: a storm raising the stakes for an urgent recovery morgan chesky, nbc news, new orleans. france is on the highest security alert after a suspected islamic terrorist killed three people at a church in the southern city of nice. nbc's richard engel has late details. >> reporter: 9:00 a.m. in nice. police move in shooting to stop a suspected terroris in the city basilica officials said the assailant shouted allah akbar. as he slit the throats of a man and woman in the church, nearly beheading one. another woman escaped but was hunted down and killed authorities calling it an islamist terrorist attack nbc's matt bradley is in paris. >> prosecutors say the suspect who was
captured alive is young tunisian who arrived just weeks ago. french president macron is activating thousands of troops to protect places of worship and schools. >> reporter: today's attack just a mile from where four years ago an isis-inspired radical killed more than 80 people with a truck. so why an attack today? last month a teacher showed his class a cartoon of the muslim prophet muhammad the class was about free speech. a teenager, a muslim immigrant, lay in wait and beheaded him two weeks ago. france was outraged. president macron said france must defend its secular traditions but some muslims took that defense of the teacher as an insult to islam. and today an extremist attacked with a knife in nice. president macron said france is under attack and this comes just as the country is beginning a new near total covid lockdown lester >> all right richard engel tonight, thank you. the coronavirus
has now surged past 9 million cases in the u.s. with at least 6 states breaking daily records for new cases and in many remote areas hospitals are at a breaking point our gabe gutierrez got exclusive access inside a covid icu in a growing hot spot i have to tell you some of what you are about to see is hard to take. >> reporter: st. vincent health care in billings, montana, wasn't always among the front lines in the war against covid. it is now. >> i'm a good nurse. and the nurses i work with are good nurses but are we are broken. >> reporter: joey traywick said he's personally held the hands of 23 of his patients who have died after the first one passed without him >> i came back to the room at one point and she had passed by herself and i thought, i'm
never going to let that happen again. if i have to stay late after work, if it means coming in on my day off, they're not going to pass alone on my unit again. none of them. >> reporter: the hospital granted us access with the permission of patients' families to show the devastating impact of the virus. billings is a city of more than 100,000 people but the facility takes in critical patients from across the state this is one of the hospital's three covid units. at least 14 patients here are on ventilators right now. it's a minute by minute struggle. >> it's been shocking to me how fast it's accelerated in the last couple weeks. >> reporter: dr. chris stangen works in the icu. >> a lot of times the 12-hour shifts feel more like 13 and 14-hour shifts there's just too much to do and we can't get it all done. >> reporter: how close are you to being at capacity right now >> we are full
we are very close. we can probably find beds but it's going to be at the expense of non-covid patients. >> reporter: she came out of retirement earlier this year to rush to new york now she is back. the virus followed >> this patient may or may not survive. >> reporter: she showed us one patient still intubated. another had just come off his ventilator. >> he's improved but that doesn't mean he's out of the woods yet. he is still very critical >> reporter: the toll here is mounting both for the patients and their caretakers joey traywick has self-isolated for months sleeping in his basement away from his wife and three kids how hard is that for you? >> it's a huge impact. >> reporter: this is why he does it late today h visited one of his patients now in recovery out of isolation. >> he gets to get off of the covid unit on to a different floor where he can have visitor perhaps.
it's like we won >> all right gabe joins us now. you have been covering the pandemic for months what struck you today? >> reporter: lester, reminded me a bit of what we saw in new york months ago. the health care workers we spoke with today said they're frustrated more people haven't been wearing mask they wish at least some of this could have been prevented. lester >> seems like there's no end to the suffering in all this. gabe, thank you. as the country is consumed by a new wave in the pandemic, there is rising concern of a shortage of medical gloves now that's crucial for keeping health care workers and patients safe stephanie gosk has our nbc news investigation. >> reporter: 10:30 sunday night in coral gables florida. a million-dollar heist is under way the cargo, surgical gloves shipped from malaysia critical for health care workers fighting covid and there are fears of a looming shortage across the country. in south dakota where the virus is surging,
gloves are now five times more expensive. >> are there places where we can see people run out of gloves in the next few months >> yeah, i think we will especially in the smaller rural communities where the hospitals, critical access hospitals are strapped for cash. they can't afford to buy a shipping container. >> reporter: nonlatex medical gloves are manufactured almost entirely in asia the only u.s.-owned factory is here in northern new hampshire. how difficult is it to make this glove? >> that's the challenging part it requires a lot of infrastructure. a lot of raw materials. >> reporter: for rich, alarm bells started going off last february when a man saying he represente the chinese government offered to buy his whole supply >> i called my friend who are associates a the department of defense. i said, hey, these guys are trying to buy all our gloves i would ship product anywhere but i want to protect the interests of the usa because we do things right. >> reporter: he applied for a federal contract what's going to be here
>> a very long building. >> reporter: he eventually received $22 million but didn't get the money until september. >> we knew there was going to be massive spikes in demand. >> reporter: the expansion which will increase production 20 fold won't be up and running until next summer hhs tells nbc news they hope to buy 4.5 billion gloves by february with 700 million ordered already. the agency said it's set to announce a big investment in domestic ppe production why is it so important to bring the production back to the u.s. >> this is life and death. if we don't have these products people get sick and die >> reporter: a tough lesson to learn in the middle of fighting a deadly pandemic. stephanie gosk, nbc news, coal brook, new hampshire. although the economy has made some strides in recovery over the summer, unemployment remains a big issue in the final days before the election wit another 751,000 claims for jobless benefits last week. nbc's jo ling kent has more. >> reporter: with just five days left to vote
the number one issue for andrew paris and millions of americans is the economy. >> i basically have enough money to pay for food and my mortgage. >> reporter: we first met in april when he lost his long time bartending job now he is scraping by as a busboy. his partial unemployment set to run out in december. >> i'll probably be relying on about $400 a week. >> reporter: today on the campaign trail - >> we left donald trump a strong economy. just like everything else he inherited he blew it. >> you see the number today? 33.1 gdp, the biggest in the history of our country by almost triple. >> reporter: gdp which measures economic activity did grow a record 33% from july to september however, the u.s. economy still has not bounced back in full from the huge hit it took during the peak of the shutdowns and while unemployment claims have come dow from record highs they're still nearly triple what they were pre-pandemic the coliseum here in los angeles holds more
than 77,000 people currently over 22 million people are unemployed that is the equivalent of nearly 300 of these stadiums full of people looking for a job. >> i'm treading water but there's definitely a sense of impending doom. >> reporter: a final report card on the economy as voters make their final decisions. jo ling kent, nbc news an incredible scene today in southeast texas where a freight trail derailed a motorist shooting video as the cars tumbled on to a road in slow motion officials said the train was carrying chemicals. schools in the area were evacuated but luckily no one was injured. in just 60 seconds, new fears of shortages of items that were tough to find earlier i this pandemic, what to get now and how.
forget these images from march bare shelves at stores coast to coast toilet paper, disinfectant and hand sanitizer scarce now with election uncertainty and new covid surges, 57% of consumers surveyed say they are stocking up >> i'm honestly concerned about the food shortages >> reporter: retail experts say don't panic. stores and food manufacturers are much better equipped to deal with demand what do you say to consumers then to tell them not to hoard? >> there's plenty of food to go around. you may not have the exact products you are looking for but there will be options. >> reporter: grocer albertson's says it's seen shoppers making fewer trips to the store but buying more with each visit or online order saying we are incredibly well prepared but it is still difficult to get items like cleaning sprays, wipes and flour. general mills ceo said the company spent the past seven months preparing for the covid holiday crush. >> we ramped up production on all the things that sold out and we are highly confident that there will be product on the shelf available
for consumers. >> reporter: the most in demand items shifting, too. baking goods up 3,400% this october compared to this time last year and now shoppers want to buy more frozen dinners, pasta, snacks and cleaning products. tupperware, another surprise winner, stock up 35% with more of us cooking and storing leftovers at home. for tech savvy shoppers, many websites alert you when hard to find products are restocked. >> so, vicky, what can we do to get what we need >> reporter: lester, experts say the key to getting what you need is to make a list now, don't hoard and shop early. demand for holiday groceries is expected to peak in the two weeks ahead of thanksgiving lester >> all right vicky nguyen tonight, thank you. up next, how to make it a safe halloween.
in washington state, scientists have captured two huge murder hornet queens just days after they discovered and destroyed a nest in the same tree. the covid crisis has many parents concerned as they ge ready for halloween on saturday kristen dahlgren with some tips to stay safe >> reporter: this year halloween may be scarier than ever. >> trick or treat. >> reporter: amid fears that holiday traditions could turn into a superspreader event. thumbs up or down, halloween house parties? >> thumbs down too many people, too close together. >> reporter: that big bowl of halloween candy? >> thumbs down
too many hands in one area and you can get contaminated that way. >> reporter: instead experts recommend individually packaged candy left outside to avoid too many hands ringing that doorbell. one colorado mom put candy on individual sticks when you get home, wipe it down bottom line, make common sense a part of your costume. >> keep social distancing in mind wear a mask and wash your hands. >> reporter: that werewolf mask isn't a substitute finally, especiall in hot spots think about keeping activities in your own home a halloween scavenger hunt. >> hey, guys i found it >> reporter: or some spooky stargazing. according to the "farmer's almanac, this will be the first halloween the full moon has appeared in all time zones since 1944 quite a treat in a very tricky year kristen dahlgren, nbc news. up next for us, we'll meet a young athlete making history and "inspiring america.
finally, the young athlete hoping to make history in nine days at one of the toughest competitions around. catie beck with "inspiring america." >> reporter: few athletic events test the limits of human endurance more than an ironman. what do you think you'll feel when you finish >> i'll be amazing >> reporter: amazing for anyone but beyond for 21-year-old chris nikic, organizers say he's the first perso with down's syndrome to ever attempt one.
>> i can prove to kids that if i can do it then they can do it, too. >> reporter: he'll swim 2.4 miles in open water. then ride 112 miles. and run a full marathon, 26.2 miles four to eight hours a day is training time chris's motto, get 1% better every day ironman? >> ironman. >> reporter: eat more rice >> yes. >> reporter: victories hard earned for a boy who endured countless surgeries, couldn't walk until age 4 or eat solid foods until 5. chris's parents want others raising kids with down's syndrome to see new possibility in chris's journey. >> we want them to realize earlier thei child is a blessing and they can live an amazing life. >> parents are reaching out to me saying i'm their hero to kids. it is possible for them >> let's go.
>> reporter: his goal will change history. his determination -- >> you are an ironman! >> reporter: -- already changing hearts and minds catie beck, nbc news. >> no limits pretty awesome. that's "nightly news" for this thursday thank you for watching i'm lester holt. please take care of yourself and each other. good night ♪ >> kelly: ♪ 25 years and my life is
still ♪ ♪ tryin' to get up that great big hill ♪ ♪ of hope ♪ for a destination ♪ i realized quickly when i knew i should ♪ ♪ that the world was made up of this brotherhood of man ♪ ♪ for whatever that means ♪ and so i cry sometimes ♪ when i'm lying in bed ♪ just to get it all out ♪ what's in my head ♪ and i, i am feeling ♪ a little peculiar ♪ and so i wake ♪ in the morning ♪ and i step outside ♪ and i take a deep breath ♪ and i get real high ♪ and i scream from the top of my lungs ♪ ♪ "what's going on?" ♪ and i say, hey-ey-ey ♪ hey-ey-ey ♪ i said "hey, what's going on?" ♪