tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC January 5, 2018 7:00pm-7:30pm EST
simply smarter shopping. tonight, the flu emergency now so bad many e.r.s are overwhelmed, forced to turn patients away. some even being treated outside in tents. what federal health officials are saying tonight. a cascading nightmare at airports all across the country. a blizzard backlog in the air and even on the ground. cars left frozen. and if you think it's cold now, just wait. the author at the center of that explosive trump book battle fires back at the president. >> my credibility is being questioned by a man who has less credibility than perhaps anyone who has ever walked on earth at this point. >> our nbc news exclusive with michael wolff. our visit to the new boomtowns sprouting up in the desert.
>> 8,064,000 of cannabis. >> your lips to god's ears. >> just one building alone. >> they're banking on a pot bonanza. >> and update your iphone. that's a new warning as a security threat sends apple, google and microsoft scrambling. this is nbc "nightly news" with lester holt. good evening, everyone. thank you for being here. across the country tonight hospitals are being overwhelmed by a flu emergency. the centers for disease control out with new numbers tonight showing the flu season is off to a fast and brutal start, far worse than what they were seeing last year at this time. tens of thousands have been sick in nearly every state including some who got the flu shot. and more worrisome, the peak of the season is still weeks away. our national correspondent miguel almaguer has details tonight. >> i'm going to take a look in your throat here, okay? >> reporter: the new numbers from the cdc are no surprise to this doctor. another patient with flu-like symptoms ending up in her e.r.
>> ah. >> good. >> reporter: so far this flu season, a staggering 41,719 cases have been reported. nearly three times more than this time last season. >> kristin got it on the 21st, then jacob the 23rd, then i got it the 26th. >> reporter: outside portland, oregon, the frazier family fell like dominoes, four children crippled by the flu. mom, jamie, is still sick today. >> christmas consisted of the ones who were sick wearing surgical masks to open their presents, and then pretty much going back and laying in all of our beds again. >> reporter: it turns out the frazier family was hit with two strains of the flu, even though the kids had their flu shots. last year at this time the outbreak was widespread in 12 states. this year 46. >> we expect it to continue to rise because everyone's been home with their
[000:02:59;00] children are together again. people are packing the workplace. >> reporter: tonight, it's unclear why this flu season is so bad. some hospitals are inundated, asking those who aren't severely ill to stay home. others are restricting visitors. in san diego, a surge tent is set up to treat flu patients. hospitals and families everywhere overwhelmed as the epidemic spreads. tonight at many hospitals across the country, beds are at a premium. as for that flu shot, well, it's not always effective and not a guarantee you won't get sick. doctors say if you have it and catch the flu, your symptoms will be much less severe. >> looks like we're all going to have to take care of ourselves. thank you, miguel. now to the nightmare ripple effect from the blizzard of 2018 being felt by people traveling all across the country trying to fly out of airports that are still snowed under. yet again today nearly 2,000 flights were canceled. over the last two days
almost a million canceled. nbc's tom costello has the latest on the effort to dig out and get flights back up in the air. >> reporter: from portland, maine, where they've been blowing and scraping the runways, south to boston, new york, even the deep south, it was a day of digging out and rebooking. >> they told us maybe we'll fly back monday or tuesday only. so a few more days in new york. >> reporter: flying from denver to new york for her grandmother's birthday yesterday, annie kaufman didn't even know she'd been diverted to detroit. >> i was asleep the whole time. so when they said welcome to detroit, i looked at the woman next to me and said, detroit? >> reporter: by this morning she made it to boston where ground crews worked around the clock through cold, heavy wind to clear the snow from runways and ramps. soon planes were back in the air. >> a lot of snow out there. we have really no
place to put it. we pile it into big >> reporter: newark, laguardia and jfk reopened today after some slept on a cold airport floor. >> some people said they'd drive to other states just to get to another airport. >> reporter: even the bus station in chicago was packed with stranded passengers. >> i'm tired. i'm exhausted. i have to stay here in a bus stop at greyhound with my kids. >> frozen stilt houses at scituate. >> reporter: back at coastal massachusetts, the icy aftermath. boats frozen in harbors, cars encased in ice up to their hoods. >> the thing that was crazy was it came on so fast. >> reporter: crews now removing mountains of debris after a record breaking storm surge. and look at this, the airport in charleston, of all places, buried in eight inches of snow. with no plows, the runways are still closed. >> we live in south carolina not south dakota. we're not accustomed to this kind of weather. >> reporter: charleston is hoping
the air force will some time tomorrow as the national air system recovers. so the airlines have some advice if your flight is canceled. you can stand in line for a rebooking. you can call the airline. but the best way to do this is get the app on your phone and rebook yourself. that's faster than waiting for the computer to automatically rebook you. advice for the next time your flight is canceled. lester, minus 10 with the wind chill here in d.c., back to you. >> lovely. tom costello, thank you. the blizzard may have blown out, but the deep freeze is just getting started. record lows possible on the east coast as we head into the weekend. wind chill advisories have been issued for millions of people. in some places it could feel like 40 below. nbc meteorologist dylan dreyer is braving the cold in new york city tonight. the two questions everyone wants the answers to -- how low will it go and how long is this going to last? >> lester, we're looking at record breaking cold by the time we get to sunday morning.
tom costello said it was 10 below with the wind chill in d.c. i was going to complain about the 4 we're dealing with in new york city, but i won't do that anymore. let's take a look at the graphics. 111 million people are under some sort of wind chill advisory or wind chill warning, and that is going to last all weekend long. tomorrow morning, it will feel like 20 degrees below zero in boston as that cold air pours in. it only takes 30 minutes to get frostbite when conditions are that cold. we're looking at 6 below down in d.c. tomorrow. 20 below also the wind chill in indianapolis. now on sunday morning the cold continues. temperatures will feel like 29 below in bangor, maine, 10 below in new york city, even down into the carolinas we are going to feel wind chills well down into the lower single digits. as for records, sunday morning we'll see several records broken across major cities. zero in philly, 1 in new york, 5 below in boston. the good news is by sunday afternoon a warm-up will move into the midwest and make it to the east coast
by monday. lester? >>an you. now to an nbc news exclusive. michael wolff, the author at the center of the storm and in the president's crosshairs after writing the book about life inside the trump west wing that left jaws dropping. the white house has pushed back hard, calling it fiction. but wolff is having none of it, standing by his work and doubling down. we get details from nbc's kristen welker. >> reporter: today president trump pelted with questions about the explosive book "fire and fury." >> mr. president, what do you say to michael wolff? >> reporter: showing restraint, but earlier taking to twitter to unleash some fury of his own, calling the book full of lies, misrepresentations and sources that don't exist. mr. trump's legal team tried to block the book's release. in such high demand, it hit shelves today, four days early. >> wait. where do i send the box of chocolates? >> reporter: in an
exclusive interview on "today "today," author michael wolff said the president's threats will only boost his sales and wolff insisted the account is accurate despite some of the president's former top aides saying they were misquoted. >> i'm certainly absolutely in every way comfortable with everything i reported. >> reporter: wolff noted he recorded some interviews is and spoke with the president. >> i spent about three hours with the president over the course of the campaign and in the white house. >> reporter: when pressed by savannah on his assertion that those around the president question his fitness for office? >> let me put a marker in the sand here. 100% of the people around him. >> reporter: even claiming the president's aides all describe him the same way. >> they all say he is like a child. and what they mean by that is he has a need for immediate gratification. it's all about him. >> reporter: this morning the president's supporters fired back. >> it's absolutely outrageous to make
these types of simply untrue. >> reporter: and disputed several facts including that now first lady melania trump cried about moving to the white house. >> melania, like the rest of us, was ecstatic that her husband had just been elected the 45th president of the united states. >> did you flatter your way in? >> i certainly said what was ever necessary to get the story. >> reporter: the president is also out with a new mocking nickname for his former adviser steve bannon, calling him sloppy steve on twitter today. bannon is a central source in the book. he accuses trump's son of treason and questions the president's grasp of reality. no response from bannon tonight. lester? >> kristen welker at the white house thank you, kristin. to the new revelations in the russia investigation. multiple white house officials urged attorney general jeff sessions not to recuse himself from the probe according to a senior u.s. official. and the order reportedly came straight from the oval office. it has some asking tonight could that be construed as obstruction of
justic correspondent peter alexander has more. >> reporter: do not recuse yourself. that was the message delivered to attorney general jeff sessions by white house counsel don mcgahn and several others last march. a senior white house official telling nbc news that the presidential aides all tried to convince sessions not to remove himself from running the russia probe. the instructions coming from the president himself, according to "the new york times," orders sessions ignored. >> i have recused myself. >> reporter: sessions' move infuriating president trump who at times erupted in anger telling aides he expected his attorney general to look out for him. like, mr. trump said, robert kennedy did for jfk and eric holder for president obama. >> i just gives us a sense of how the president sees the job of his top law enforcement official not as someone necessary to follow the facts but someone to protect him. >> reporter: ultimately sessions' deputy would appoint special counsel robert mueller. the entire episode raising new questions about possible obstruction of justice.
p faces both political and legal threats. he had more information available to us about possible obstruction of justice than about collusion. >> reporter: a white house lawyer declined to comment. also tonight, word the fbi's resumed an investigation into the clinton foundation focusing on whether donors received preferential treatment from the state department while hillary clinton was at the helm. the fbi's looked into this before, but that inquiry was put on ice during the 2016 campaign to avoid the perception the fbi was trying to influence the election. the president's repeatedly urged the fbi to go after clinton, his past opponent, tweeting, where is our justice department? a clinton spokesman tonight calling the inquiry a sham, adding the goal is to distract from the indictments, guilty pleas and accusations of treason from trump's own people at the expense of our justice system's integrity. tonight the justice department says that attorney general sessions was not invited to this weekend's camp david
retreat where many other cabinet officials will be [000:12:59;00] the white house says the majority of cabinet members are not attending and that it stands firmly behind attorney general sessions. lester? >> peter alexander inside the white house tonight, thanks. the new jobs report is out. the u.s. added 148,000 jobs in december falling short of economists' expectations. the unemployment rate remains steady at 4.1%, the lowest level in 17 years. and year over year wages grew about 2.5%. speaking of jobs and the economy, with the trump administration this week rolling back obama-era rules that allow legal marijuana to thrive, nerves are sure to be rattled in california towns that are now banking on recreational cannabis to dig them out of tough times. nbc's jacob soboroff visited one of them. >> reporter: in 2001, the town of desert hot springs went bankrupt. it's been struggling ever since and hopes
to revive its fortunes with cannabis. >> we have over 200 parcels that are zoned for cannabis. >> reporter: this woman runs a consulting group for cannabis businesses there. one of them is this facility that cost $7 million to build but the up side is almost price lis. 8,064,000 of cannabis every year out of this single building? >> your lips to god's ears. it has many projects just like this. it's already had an impact on property values. >> a couple years ago probably purchased for 60,000 an acre. >> reporter: 60,000. and today? >> you'd be lucky if you could find one for 900,000 to a million. >> reporter: pot has also been a boon for the construction business here. has this been a busy time for you? >> this year has been good. yeah. since the recession, this is the busiest year. >> reporter: even while touring a project with clients, carter acknowledges a harsh reality. you were saying a lot of people out here are buying acres at a million dollars a pop. they're not all going to succeed.
>> that's true. some won't get their doors open. other states show us 70% fail rate. fail rate and now an antagonistic federal government should strike fear into the heart of anyone investing in pot. but like california's original gold rush, the prospect of prosperity from cannabis hasn't stopped people from trying. jacob soboroff, nbc news, desert hot springs, california. still ahead, as we continue tonight, security alert. why billions of devices from apple, google and microsoft are now open to attack. steps you should take right now to protect yourself. also, the health scare that has "jeopardy" host alec trebek taking a break. ♪ it takes a lot of work to run this business. but i really love it. i'm on the move all day long... and sometimes, i don't eat the way i should. so, i drink boost to get the nutrition i'm missing. boost high protein nutritional drink has 15 grams of protein to help maintain muscle and 26 essential vitamins and minerals, including calcium and vitamin d. all with a great taste.
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all those companies are scrambling to fix the problem. nbc's jo ling kent has >> reporter: the security flaws affecting many brands are called meltdown and spectre and apple says every mac, iphone and ipad has them. >> i try to update my phone. so the fact that all that stuff could be easily recovered from some outside party, that's kind of creepy. >> reporter: the flaw allows cyber criminals to tap into the memory on a chip found in billions of laptops, desktops, tablets and smartphones, from almost all brands. hackers could access your personal data like user names and passwords. >> there's quite a bit of sensitive information that's contained within memory. once an attacker has access to that, they can leverage that to get further access to a system or to a corporate network. >> reporter: the flawed chips were made by intel, advanced microdevices and a.r.m. they're working with other tech companies to resolve this issue promptly. no cyber theft has
been reported yet, but consumers probably won't be able to detect any breach. to protect yourself, apple,ro new security patches in their software updates that people should download right away. >> they should also turn on automatic updates so that their devices and their computers will take care of themselves. >> reporter: intel is now facing multiple class-action lawsuits by customers alleging they're being forced to buy a new chip or download a fix that slows their system. another obstacle in safeguarding your digital life. jo ling kent, nbc news, los angeles. still ahead here tonight, the touching story of compassionate eighth graders and one lucky duck. my ancestry dna results are that i am 26% nigerian. i am just trying to learn as much as i can about my culture. i put the gele on my head and i looked into the mirror and i was trying not to cry. because it's a hat, but it's like the most important hat i've ever owned.
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my donor's mom says "you were meant to carry his story". finally tonight, it's one of hollywood's most anticipated nights. the 75th annual golden globes are this sunday, but this year's celebration is happening under the dark cloud of scandals rocking the entertainment industry. nbc's joe fryer now on what to expect. >> reporter: the golden globes have become known as hollywood's biggest party. >> sit down! >> reporter: an unpredictable bash that brings together stars from movies and tv. >> this isn't first time i've been mistaken for ryan reynolds. >> reporter: this year's nominees include tom hanks, denzel washington, nicole kidman and meryl streep nominated for the 31st time. but the show will also strike a more serious tone. it will start right here on the red carpet where you can expect to see a different kind of fashion statement. several stars promise to wear all black to protest sexual harassment and assault
in the wake of the harvey weinstein allegations and me too movement, golden meyers says he must find the right balance. >> you talk about how to strike the right tone. we definitely aren't going to ignore it. it's the elephant in the room. >> reporter: the issue even extends to the actual awards. nominee christopher plummer could be rewarded for reshooting all of kevin spacey's scenes in "all the money in the world" right before the movie was released. >> people are going to be paying more close attention to their casting, you know, who they're working with, and they're going to be a little bit possibly more cautious about that. >> reporter: this year "the shape of water" leads all movies with seven nominations while the tv categories feature rookie shows like "the marvelous mrs. mazel" and reboots like "will & grace." a mix of old and new together under one star-studded roof. joe fryer, beverly hills, california. we appreciate you spending part of your evening with us. that is "nightly news" for this friday night. i'm lester holt.