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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  February 2, 2016 7:00pm-7:27pm EST

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tonight, victory lap. ted cruz reshapes the race handing a surprising loss to donald trump in iowa while marco rubio's strong showing gives hope to mainstream republicans, but it's a photo finish for hillary clinton, declared the winner in a very late call by the party with a razor thin margin over bernie sanders. new zika fears. the first confirmed case of sexually transmitted zika in the u.s., and questions over whether the virus can cause paralysis in adults. social media murder? young college students accused in the death of a 13-year-old girl. was she lured to her death online? and nightmare at 10,000 feet. a massive hole ruptured in the side of a plane mid-air, a harrowing scene inside the cabin as passengers brace for an emergency landing.
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"nightly news" begins right now. >> announcer: from nbc news world headquarters in new york, this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. good evening. there's some big and intriguing new story lines in the race for president tonight after iowa voters reshuffled the race. there were just two winners, of course, but at least twice that many victory-sounding speeches after last night's results followed by the mad overnight dash to new hampshire. ted cruz arriving with a surprise tailwind after defying the polls to defeat donald trump. marco rubio a close enough third to add a new dynamic to the race. for the democrats it was razor close, but iowa democratic party has declared hillary clinton the winner over bernie sanders who is calling it a virtual tie. the new hampshire primary a week from tonight just got a whole lot more interesting. let's start with the cruz/trump headline and hallie jackson.
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hello, hallie. >> reporter: hi, lester. the center of the political universe has shifted here less than 24 hours after iowa set a record with 50% more republicans caucusing than ever before. now, it's new hampshire's turn with some candidates under pressure. not used to losing -- >> we're going to win. we're going to win so much. >> reporter: donald trump finally did, today making headlines with the winning story line all ted cruz. >> so what a victory last night. >> reporter: he's deploying the same strategy in windham, new hampshire as he did near windham, iowa, shake lots of hands. >> i'm a local volunteer with the ted cruz campaign. >> reporter: make lots of calls and take on trump. >> donald trump was saying every day that i was his friend, that he loved me, and now i'm an anchor baby. he or anyone else insults me i don't respond in kind. i think the american people deserve more. >> reporter: but you've attacked them? >> i do think differences on policy, on record, on
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substance, that's fair game. >> reporter: our conversation coming just after cruz's victory speech last night which trump today slammed for being too long, too flamboyant, taking a tone very different from his gracious one last night. >> and i want to congratulate ted, and i want to congratulate all of the incredible candidates. >> reporter: trump now in new hampshire where he leads by double digits. his edge here, more independent voters and fewer evangelicals, a crucial group for cruz in iowa, and by the time new hampshire votes tuesday, trump's decision to bail on the des moines debate may not resonate anymore. >> anything can happen because new hampshire voters really make up their mind on that final weekend. >> reporter: while cruz hopes to frame this as a one-on-one duel, one point behind trump in iowa was marco rubio, a strong third. isn't this a three-man race now? >> well, listen, that's up to the that's going to be up to the voters. i have to say i'm amused at listening to the media talk about what an impressive third place finish. >> but a new state means a new race, now just run week away. hallie jackson, nbc news, windham, new hampshire. >> reporter: this is gabe gutierrez
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covering the rubio campaign. rarely has a third place finish felt so much like a victory. today marco rubio fought to keep that momentum. >> i'll see you in the morning. i wasn't kidding. >> reporter: thanks to a ground game that swayed late undecided voters, rubio shattered expectations in iowa, surging into the top three of the republican field. >> so this is the moment they said would never happen. >> reporter: and emerging as the first viable gop alternative to cruz and trump. >> they told me that we have no chance because my hair wasn't gray enough and my boots were too high. >> reporter: even polling at 15%, yet he raked in a surprising 23%, just one percentage point behind trump. are you the real establishment candidate here? >> you know, i think people always use that terminology. i've had to run against the establishment. that said i want to unify the party. >> reporter: now the question is how much will that establishment rally behind him, or will donors support other candidates, jeb bush, john kasich or chris christie? today christie took rubio head on.
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>> this isn't the student council election, everybody. this is an election for president of the united states. let's get the boy in the bubble out of the bubble. >> reporter: some strong words from christie. >> i think it's been a tough couple days for chris and some of the other guys. >> reporter: rubio looking past new hampshire. >> i'm putting my confidence and my trust in marco rubio. >> reporter: announcing an endorsement from south carolina senator tim scott. >> rubio wants to make the case in new hampshire that unlike ted cruz he can appeal to republicans in a much more moderate state, and so that's how he wants to position himself as the anti-cruz. >> reporter: many analysts are predicting a 3, 2, 1 strategy for rubio, if he finishes third in iowa, second here in new hampshire and first in south carolina, that could be the most likely path to his nomination. lester. >> thanks, gabe. and for democrats it was the closest race in iowa caucus history, so tight that iowa's democratic party did not declare
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hillary clinton a winner and by a narrow margin until late this afternoon. bernie sanders has not ruled out contesting the count. we've got both campaigns covered starting with nbc's andrea mitchell. >> reporter: in new hampshire today hillary clinton was sounding triumphant. >> i am so thrilled that i'm coming to new hampshire after winning iowa! >> reporter: but the stark reality is after starting out 40 points ahead of bernie sanders, she ended up with a razor thin victory. >> tails. >> tails. >> reporter: it even took coin tosses to get there, and the delegates will be virtually evenly split. clinton today telling msnbc's chris matthews she was relieved at the outcome. >> everybody said if there was a big turnout that would advantage senator sanders. there was a big turnout, and we won. >> reporter: but iowa entrance poll reveals her weaknesses. among the biggest, the crushing defeat among young voters, losing them by 84% to 14%. why are young voters going for sanders?
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do you understand what that dynamic is? >> absolutely. >> reporter: what is it? >> the system is rigged against you, vote for me, i'll break up the big banks and tax the billionaires and give you free college and cut the cost of health care, end of story. >> reporter: after squeaking out a win in iowa, clinton is now sounding more like sanders. >> i know that we can finish the job of universal health care coverage for every single man, woman and child! >> reporter: she's now trying to lower expectations here in new hampshire where sanders from neighboring vermont has a double-digit lead, hoping her husband, who was once the comeback kid here, will help her at least avoid too big a defeat. andrea mitchell, nbc news, manchester, new hampshire. >> reporter: i'm kasie hunt with the sanders campaign in new hampshire where they are hoping to turn iowa momentum into his first 2016 victory next tuesday. >> and last night we began the political
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revolution not just in iowa, not just in new hampshire but all over this country. >> reporter: sanders criticizing clinton after this comment last night. >> i am a progressive who gets things done for people. >> reporter: do you think hillary clinton is a progressive? >> some days, yes. except when she announces that she is a proud moderate and then i guess she's not a progressive. >> reporter: the vermont senator still riding high after that near miss in the iowa caucuses that the campaign says was anything but a loss. >> it looks like we are in a virtual tie. >> reporter: according to entrance polls, that performance was powered by first-time caucus-goers who went for him 59% to 37%. but those polls also show a steep challenge for sanders. iowa democrats who are most concerned about which candidate can win in november backed hillary clinton by 60 points. >> poem say, well, i like you, bernie, i
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want to vote for you, but i just don't think you can win. well, i think that today we took a giant step to overcome that kind of doubt. >> reporter: it was a whirlwind night for sanders. a red eye flight to new hampshire where hundreds of supporters rallied for him at 5:00 in the morning. >> what time is it? that's amazing. >> reporter: another sign of that enthusiasm. after his speech last night bernie sanders raised over $1 million. lester? >> all right, kasie, thanks. let's turn to chuck todd, nbc news political director and moderator of "meet the press." chuck, what impact will last night have and what plays out in new hampshire over the next week? >> now we see a shift in the burden of proof on candidacies. in iowa the burden of proof was on donald trump and hillary clinton and ted cruz. ted cruz passed his test. hillary clinton barely passed her test. now the burden of proof shifts in new hampshire to bernie sanders and donald trump. donald trump and bernie sanders have had double-digit leads in new hampshire for weeks.
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now they have to win here. well, hillary clinton might have a little bit of momentum, the clintons have done well in new hampshire in the past, and now we know everything could be thrown up into the air on the republican side of things. so i think that's the big change here is suddenly must-win states for sanders and trump. >> all right, chuck. thank you. there are a pair of troubling new developments in the zika virus outbreak. doctors in the u.s. are reporting the first known case of the virus being sexually transmitted. while in brazil experts are trying to determine whether the virus could be linked to a rare condition that causes paralysis in adults. nbc's rehema ellis reports from brazil. >> reporter: mosquitos are the primary way the zika virus is transmitted, but today the cdc confirmed the first case acquired by sexual contact in texas. as a result, the cdc tells nbc news it will now issue a new advisory this week. >> if a man comes back, gets sick with zika and then has sexual intercourse
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with a woman who is pregnant or may be pregnant, there is the theoretical risk that that woman could then become infected with zika. >> reporter: as health officials study transmission, the cdc is also investigating other serious illnesses zika may cause beyond microcephaly in babies. in brazil, 27-year-old dave gomez is recovering from sudden paralysis he woke up with a month ago after having zika-likecism tomts. were you afraid? he was diagnosed with guillain-barre syndrome, a rare and potentially life-threatening attack on the nervous system causing paralysis. debilitating but often treatable with blood-cell infusions and physical therapy. >> last year we have 65 cases. >> reporter: this neurologist says that's four times higher than normal at her hospital. snow think the zika virus is connected with the syndrome? >> yes, absolutely. >> reporter: who is at risk?
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>> everybody. >> reporter: the cdc is on the ground in brazil looking into the possible link. >> we're doing a study so we can determine if there's a relation and if so which people are most at risk. >> reporter: you're saying he could be disabled for the rest of his life? >> yes, yes. >> reporter: this 59-year-old farmer paralyzed for a month with guillain-barre syndrome showing no signs of recovery as scientists race to solve this unfolding medical mystery. raheema, ellis, nbc news, recife, brazil. much of this country is under threat of severe wet they are evening and into the overnight hours. nearly 15 million people are under tornado watches in the south while blizzard conditions continue to pound the plains and midwest where they have already been hit hard. nbc's jacob rascon is in the threat zone. >> reporter: the massive winter storm pummeled the midwest and plains, blizzard conditions in iowa and beyond. >> this will be a big snow, maybe some of the worst since 2008 and 2009. >> reporter: 11 inches of snow in the hawkeye state and more than a
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foot in colorado, and in nebraska, where whiteout conditions choked more than 100 miles of interstate 80, 15 inches of snow. airports scrambling to keep up. nearly 2 million americans under blizzard warning tonight with 21 million at risk for severe storms. >> we could have wind, hail, even tornadoes today. >> reporter: late today reports of at least two tornadoes damaging a church and a college in mississippi, reported sightings in alabama, tornado watches from louisiana to kentucky. in memphis, parking lots and intersections flooded in minutes. meanwhile in pennsylvania, a bold prediction. >> there is no shadow to be cast, an early spring is my forecast! >> reporter: only the 18th time punxsutawney phil has not seen his shadow since the late 1800s, and with el nino bringing temperatures up to 25 degrees above average an early spring is not out of the question, but for millions of americans it can't
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come early enough. and tonight the storm is on the move with new reports of tornadoes and tornado damage coming in by the minute and the threat of tornadoes, lightning, hail and damaging wind continuing tonight and into tomorrow for millions of americans. lester? >> jacob rascon tonight, thank you. comedian bill cosby appeared in court today for his first hearing in the criminal case against him. cosby is accused of drugging and sexual assaulting a woman in 2004. a former district attorney who declined to pursue charges in the case back in 2005 testified today. he said the accuser had credibility issues, but he also says he supports the decision now to prosecute cosby. the defense wants the case dismissed. still ahead tonight, they are accused of a shocking crime, a pair of virginia tech students charged in the killing of a 13-year-old girl. why it's raising new concerns about the dangers of social media. also terrifying moments inside the cabin when a huge hole is blown out of the
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investigators have investigators have released new details of the shocking murder of a 13-year-old girl in virginia. charged in the case are a pair of teenaged students from virginia tech, and there is much concern over what role social media may have had in the crime. nbc's janet shamlian explains. >> reporter: the grief-stricken mother of nicole madison lovell living the unimaginable. >> nicole touched many
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people throughout her short life. >> reporter: authorities tonight say the 13-year-old was stabbed to death and the connection to two promising college freshmen from virginia tech charged in her murder may be social media. the seventh grader was active on twitter and a facebook forum called teen dating and flirting. the night she disappeared nicole reportedly showed a friend texts from an 18-year-old man she said she was planning to meet. they came on a messaging app called kick which authorities say has been used by sexual predators. >> we will not let this violence define us. >> reporter: police say 18-year-old david eisenhauer, a track star and engineering student, kidnapped and murdered nicole. 19-year-old natalie keepers was originally charged with helping him get rid of the body. authorities now say she was involved before nicole died. >> natalie keepers will be charged today with being an accessory before the fact to the
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first-degree murder of nicole lovell. >> reporter: the seventh grader went missing last week after climbing out of her bedroom window. her body found 80 miles away in north carolina. >> these two individuals took my daughter from this planet, and i want to know why. i want all the information i can get. >> reporter: a family, a community without answers, shaken to its core. janet shamlian, nbc news. >> we're back in a moment with a major change military leaders want to make regarding the draft. thousands of people came out today to run the race for retirement. so we asked them... are you completely prepared for retirement? okay, mostly prepared? could you save 1% more of your income? it doesn't sound like much, but saving an additional 1% now, coulmake a big difference over time. i'm going to be even better about saving.
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