tv NBC Nightly News NBC August 12, 2012 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT
. [ obama ] i'm barack obama and i approve this message. on this sunday night, point of attack, the new republican ticket hits the ground running and hits the president hard. meantime team obama unleashes an all-out assault on paul ryan's record. also tonight, thriller, a behind the scenes look at how a walk in the woods helped the romney campaign keep the biggest secret in politics. here at the olympics a spectacular send off after a history making run for team usa. also a look ahead to the winter games. can you believe it? 18 months away. nightly news from london begins 18 months away. nightly news from london begins now. captions paid for by nbc-universal television this is "nbc nightly news"
with lester holt reporting tonight from the olympic summer games in london. >> good evening from the international broadcast center. it is a huge night of celebration here where the summer games draw to a finish with a much anticipated closing ceremony. while things here are winding down at home the run for president is winding up. as mitt romney and his running mate paul ryan are on the road hoping to keep the momentum going. as the new duo tries to seize the debates obama is in play. joining us from wisconsin outside of milwaukee. >> reporter: good evening. yesterday of course voters awoke to the news that mitt romney
chose paul ryan as his running mate. today president obama jumped into the parade. day two of the romney/ryan ticket and the uproar surrounding the number two continues. excitement and enthusiasm from the right and attacks from the left. >> in this critical time one of the few that stood out and fought for principle and said i have ideas to get america back on track is this person i have chosen. >> reporter: in chicago today the president weighed in. >> my opponent chose his running mate. the leader of the republicans in congress, mr. paul ryan. i want to congratulate congressman ryan. i know him. he is an articulate spokesman for governor romney's vision but it's a vision that i fundamentally disagree with. >> reporter: earlier romney and
ryan quoted voters. >> are we going to win north carolina? >> reporter: while history holds voters normally vote for the name atop the ballot. >> we owe you a choice, a choice of two futures. we can either stay on the current path that we are on or we can change this thing and get this country back on the right track. >> reporter: though a member o congress 14 years ryan was a virtual unknown until two years ago when republicans won back the house and he took over as chair as a powerful budget committee. ryan's so-called road map for america's future, a proposed federal budget appears destined to be a lightning rod evidenced by headlines. florida congressman.
>> suggests we should end medicare as we know it. >> reporter: her counter part republican national committee chair fired back on meet the press. >> if any person in this debate has blood on their hands in regards to medicare is barack obama. he is destroying medicare. >> reporter: tomorrow the romney bus tour rolls into florida where the debate is likely to cause more than a few sparks. paul ryan is off to iowa tomorrow where president obama will also stop. >> thanks. the romney campaign says mitt romney made up his mind about picking paul ryan ten days before the official announcement saturday morning and the word slipped out a little early keeping the biggest political secret under wraps for more than a week. some insights to how they did it from peter alexander.
>> reporter: to ensure saturday's vice president announcement the romney campaign went to extraordinary lengths to avoid any leaks. the four-month vp vetting process involved only a landful of top aides and supervised by beth myers. myers explained a pain staking process where tax returns were locked in a safe each night. myers says romney made his decision august 1st. how to get them together instead of flying directly into boston the campaign booked ryan on a flight to hartford two hours away where the wisconsin congressman was picked up in a rented suv by myers 19-year-old son. ryan went undetected the entire way. >> why is it so important to keep this republican secret until the last minute?
to maximize fundraising and crowds. mitt romney has had enthusiastic audiences. the campaign says it raised roughly $3.5 million online. just one day before the announcement ryan snuck out the back door of his home marching through these woods to a nearby street where he was picked up by an aid and wisked off on a private jet to north carolina. the ryan family hid out in a hotel eating takeout. that night ryan did let one other person in on his secret calling his mom hours before stepping out on to the national stage. peter alexander, nbc news. we want to bring you the guy who broke the news about the pick, chuck todd. the dems think there is traction
to go after ryan's proposal to overhaul medicare. could it hurt romney and where? >> we have put together headlines just in the state of florida alone. when you see the headlines overnight there you can see that that is where there are more medicare sensitive voters perhaps than anywhere else in this presidential battleground. on this bus tour initially romney was supposed to go to florida and the assumption was that ryan would go with him. there is the wisconsin rally tonight and ryan in iowa. how they present this medicare plan that ryan pushed into the state of florida and how they push back on what are relentless attacks on medicare will be interesting. they are trying to say president obama cut medicare, too. paul ryan wants to do more cuts and more changes. so far those have been very
unpopular when tested with voters. >> the president is about to head out on his bus tour. how does the ryan pick change the conversation? does it redefine the race? >> it does. if you look at the last 48 hours medicare a word we haven't utured that much is now front and center. you will see the democrats and the obama campaign try hard to make this about taxes. you will see the romney campaign try very much to deflect the medicare attack and do their best to not talk about medicare attacks and focus on the economy and have a tax conversation. they both want to have the tax conversation. the question is how much is medicare a part of the conversation. i think it is a big part. when you look at the older population this is a big, big problem for romney to try to figure out how to deal with. >> chuck todd in our washington news room. there is word tonight that evang lnt billy graham has been
hospitalized and being treated for a lung infection. you may recall he was previously hospitalized for pneumonia last november. doctors say he is stable and resting comfortably. a rare accident at sea today. the guided missile destroyer was left with a large hole in his hull after it collided with a japanese owned oil tanker in the persian gulf. the navy said no one was injured on either ship and the cause is being investigated. in iran rescuers called off for search for survivors after two strong earthquakes. iranian news reports say at least 20 villages were levelled and 16,000 people are now homeless. today the white house sent condolences to the iranian people and says the u.s. is ready to offer assistance.
in syria intense new fighting in aleppo. today the main opposition group renewed its call for a no fly zone over border areas to protect civilians trying to escape. in turkey yesterday secretary of state hillary clinton left open the penalty as she and her turkish counter part announced closer participation. we reached the end of the road. the united states tops the final medal count 104 medals. 46 of them gold. china is second followed by russia. and team gb picking up the third most gold. chris jansing joins us. what an incredible run for team usa. >> reporter: absolutely, lester. this has been a sensational olympics for the americans and for london, too. for all the dire predictions,
traffic nightmare was avoided and weather was generally great and it all went by so fast. it seems like just yesterday that the queen was parchuting into the opening ceremony at olympic park. tonight a closing ceremony billed it the best after show party it has ever been. an homage to the host city, big ben, the london eye. a foot stomping acrobatic visual extravaganza. 10,800 athletes marched into olympic stadium. and a jubilant team usa, winners of the medal race with 104. a fitting close to a day that kicked off with the men's marathon which began and ended at the queen's door. outside buckingham palace. nobody seems to care. they are all straining to get a
view. in between racing to the sounds of st. paul's cathedral. >> go london. >> the city is electric right now. >> and a new world record! >> reporter: it's been a game for the history books. 44 world records, 117 olympic records. this is also a clean game. 4,000 drug tests and just one positive. >> i think that's the sign that the system works. >> reporter: and not a single security headline. >> we wanted to focus on the best athletes across the world. >> reporter: mostly the fans say the games have been fun. >> i think they have gun superb. >> it is such a great atmosphere and so well organized. we have won lots of medals. >> reporter: not a bad thing. a lot of countries won medals.
54 to be exact. u ganda's gold was that country's first ever. it just makes you want to bust out singing. the cauldron will be extinguished and the torches passed. you would think after all the fuss brits would be ready for peace and quiet. apparently not. >> come back next year when we get the world cup. >> reporter: you can watch the closing ceremony tonight at 9:30 eastern and 8:30 century. the music is incredible. basically a concert for the athletes and with the pressure off they are ready to rock. >> all right. chris jansing. thank you. still ahead as "nbc nightly news" continues as london passes the baton the race is on in a russian resort town working around the clock.
winter games just 18 months away. later phelps and franklin, the fierce five, blade runner and bolt. what is the most memorable moment of the games? hey. hey eddie. i brought your stuff. you don't have to do this. yes i do. i want you to keep this. it'd be weird. take care. you too. [ sighs ] so how did it go? he's upset. [ male announcer ] spend less time at gas stations. with best in class fuel economy. it's our most innovative altima ever. ♪
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we get more now from jim maceda. >> reporter: winning the bids to host the 2014 winter olympics was a victory for vladimir putin. he is showing it as modern. as mayor recalls in 2007 when they won the bid there was no supermarket much less olympic venues. no ski resorts, no ice rinks or roads. we started everything from scratch. today there are five star hotels, a new international airport, power stations all designed to turn it into a year round mecca. some 60,000 are working around the clock on this largest construction site and no one
believes that it won't be ready to offer the world a knockout winter games. as one olympic official put it, it is a no-fail mission. there are real concerns. it is just 300 miles from unstable pockets of islamest militants. the brains behind deadly suicide attacks is still on the loose and has promised more attacks. >> russians security service of course will be their absolute priority. >> reporter: still a world-class ski resort is on track. u.s. olympic champion lindsy von gave the down hill a grade.
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over these last 17 days we have screamed, groaned and shed tears. soon fireworks will explode signaling the end of the 2012 games and a lot of us will go into a state of olympics withdrawal. we end with a look at the moments and the athletes who inspired us. >> united states of america. >> the great thing about an olympic sport is it is a metaphor for life. it is not about patronage or charm or circumstance. it's about hard work, diligence, great coaching, friendship and respect. >> here comes franklin.
>> i don't think there is any better feeling than seeing a smile on my parents' face and knowing i put it there. >> stick it! yeah! >> it is the end of an era. the most dominant in olympics history and it's pure gold. >> the final tally is absolutely mind boggling. 18 gold medals. >> i could feel the tears start coming. i tried to fight it but i just decided to let it go. it has been a great career. it's been a great journey. >> ledecky is a gold medalist. >> the future of usa swimming. >> michael gave me a high five and wished me good luck and that meant a lot to me. >> usain bolt is still the king of the 100. >> the gold medal. >> to go down in history and be
the first african american to win the individual all around is definitely a great feeling and i feel so honored. >> i think this is the happiest i will feel in my life. i am walking on clouds right now. >> he said all i see is gold. now the world will see gold around his neck. jordan burroughs, an olympic champion. >> and it is over here in london. >> if you are looking for a story book ending you just got it. >> how do you say good bye to misty? >> i never will. i can't talk about it. >> every man has his moment. andy murray has finally found
his. >> absolutely fantastic. >> allyson felix gets her gold. >> the combination of so much hard work and sacrifice comes together. to see it was just amazing. >> what a show it has been to be continued in 2016. that's "nbc nightly news" for this sunday. don't forget olympic coverage including the closing ceremony begins at 7:00, 6:00 central. i'm lester holt reporting from london. i'm lester holt reporting from london. from all of us, good night. -- captions by vitac -- www.vitac.com