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tv   NBC Nightly News  NBC  November 4, 2014 6:30pm-7:01pm EST

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nightly news" with brian williams. tonight decision 2014, have a great evening. see you at 11:00. on our broadcast tonight, down to the wire. tight races across the country with some big names at stake. our team is fanned out and standing by. with republicans confident they're about to flip the balance of power in america. captured on camera. a woman abducted right off the street. all of it reported on video. and tonight the investigation wiwidens into two states now as investigators follow their latest lead. the final seconds aboard that doomed spaceship. new information may help explain how one pilot managed to survive a catastrophic explosion at 45,000 feet. and making a difference for a young man who grew up loving cars. "nightly news" begins now. >> announcer: decision 2014.
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election night. this is "nbc nightly news" with brian williams. and good evening from our election headquarters here in new york. by all indications, we are in for a very long night. some very tight races that may go well beyond poll closings. we may not know all the results tonight. in fact, the possibility exists that when all the votes are counted, we could be watching a significant power shift in washington. we do know that many voters going to the polls today were motivated by anger. they're dissatisfied and in a sour mood over what has become of our congress, our government and washington as a whole. tonight we're about to see what $4 billion will buy. the costliest midterm election in our nation's history. it will be history just a few hours from now. either way, it will affect washington where the capitol dome tonight is under repair, just as voters are tinkering with the legislative population
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inside the capital. here in our studios we want to begin in the middle of the country, a big center of our attention tonight, nbc's kelly o'donnell is in kansas covering it all. good evening. >> reporter: good evening, brian. tonight we get to measure just how dissatisfied voters really are. and the fact that we're coming to you from kansas, a place that's supposed to be reliably republican, yet it's in place, that's a sign of how that fed-up feeling has spread across the nation. finally today, voters get their say. from iowa -- >> there's too much gridlock. i do want compromise. >> reporter: to lines at neighborhood polling stations in georgia. >> i feel good that my voice has been counted, has been heard. >> reporter: to kansas and wearing those "i voted" stickers. what message do you want to send with your vote? >> let's get together, guys and work things out. >> reporter: the stakes are enormous. 36 governor races, 11 are in trouble. notably florida and wisconsin. nationally there is the bruising
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fight to control the senate. republicans need to gain six seats overall, three look easy. tougher, republicans need to win another three out of seven states where democrats are in office. in hot battlegrounds, frustrations directed at president obama and his policies have been used like a hammer on democrats. including new hampshire incumbent democrat senator jeanne shaheen. >> we always knew this was going to be a close race. >> reporter: up against a gop challenger scott brown. >> it was a spirited battle. >> reporter: what's been spent? staggering. in the top ten senate races $429 million on general election ads. for the republican party tonight, there are trouble signs, too. here in conservative kansas. pat roberts has become the country's most vulnerable republican senator. accused of losing touch with his home state. by businessman greg orman, running as an independent on a wave of voters' anger.
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>> this campaign is really a tremendous opportunity, i think, for the voters of kansas, to send a message to politicians on both sides in washington that you've got to end the gridlock. >> reporter: and what made greg orman so fascinating in the season is he will not say which party he would work with. when we're talking to voters, they're saying what they want is to be heard. too often, brian, they say they've been disappointed. >> kelly o'donnell starting us off from kansas tonight. we'll check back with you during the evening. a total of 36 senate seats will be decided in this election. there are ten big close states we're watching, but the results of two of those races in particular especially for folks in the eastern time zone could give us an early indication about which way these political winds are blowing. chuck todd, our political director, moderator of "meet the press" at the board with more. what are you watching tonight? >> here's all the races that are up. they're all in yellow. we're in results mode.
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as soon as we call the races, you'll start seeing them colored in, blue or red. but let's look at the ten states that you just brought up and the two, the 7:30 poll close time in north carolina and an 8:00 closing time in new hampshire. if republicans are somehow winning both of these seats, democratic incumbents defending seats in both new hampshire and north carolina, if republicans are winning these, then you see their magic number, 47. they'd only need to find four of the remaining eight. they're favored in five of these eight. but if democrats do hold serve here in both of these, then brian, we're in for that not just long night but we're talking about perhaps a long week, a long month and maybe two months. but it's not just the senate where there's this battleground, look at these governors races. half of them this year, 18 of the 36 right now at this moment feel as if they'll be single-digit races. we have the idea that a republican could win in kansas, a republican in massachusetts.
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but nationally this campaign has been about one person and that's president obama. what's been interesting is to watch democrats this month and how they handled president obama. if you look here in the light blue, these are the states that president obama was invited to campaign in. just a few of these very blue states, very democratic states. everywhere else is where democrats said, we don't want obama. we want clinton. and if you're thinking about 2016, the democratic party seems to have already spoken, at least the leaders are no longer the party of obama, they're moving to become the party of clinton again. >> chuck todd at the board where he'll be all night. thanks. there's a chance, as we said, a number of races will go into overtime tonight and then some. which means control of the senate could still be undecided by the time you wake up tomorrow. for that matter, it could be january before we know by one scenario. kristen welker covering a closely watched senate race in georgia for us tonight. good evening. >> reporter: brian, good evening. georgia is pivotal.
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it could be the democrats' best chance for picking up a seat from the republicans if democrat michelle nunn beats republican david perdue. it would increase the republicans' magic number for taking back the senate from six to seven. but our pollers are showing that a runoff is likely here. that is because in order to win this state outright, a candidate needs to get 50% of the vote plus one. that's going to be really tough to do because there is a third party candidate here who will likely take off some votes which will make it tough for perdue or nunn to meet that threshold. we're seeing a similar scenario play out in louisiana where mary landrieu is fending off tough competition from two republicans including u.s. representative bill cassidy who is tracking very well in the poll. if there's a runoff in louisiana, that would happen in december. if there's a runoff here, it would happen in january, which means we might not know who controls the senate until next year. >> kristen welker in the south covering not one but two of the
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big races we'll be watching all night. thanks, we'll check back in with you. beyond the candidates there's a lot more for voters to decide on today and tonight. important and divisive issues from marijuana to minimum wage. andrea mitchell will be with us all evening long and is here with some of the big questions on the ballots tonight. >> very divisive issues. in fact legalizing marijuana on the ballot in two states, alaska and oregon. colorado and washington state already have recreational use for marijuana. florida would allow legalizing marijuana for medical use. currently 23 states and the district of columbia allow marijuana for medical use. guns are on the ballots in two states. washington state where only 11 days ago we had that horrific shooting in a classroom. competing ballot questions there. voters can decide whether they want background checks to prevent people to purchase guns without a background check or they can vote competing rule which would prevent any tighter
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new gun laws. in alabama, voters would be able to vote on a constitutional state amendment that would permit anyone to carry a firearm. then there's abortion. abortion is on the ballot in three states, colorado, north dakota and tennessee. in colorado and north dakota, basically they would say that birth begins with conception. that would make all abortions criminal offenses. in tennessee the state legislature would be empowered to restrict abortion. and then congress, as you know, has done nothing to raise the minimum wage. well, five states are now willing to step in, five states including alaska, nebraska and south dakota, arkansas and illinois. >> we'll try to let folks know on these various ballot questions what the results are. all day long we've been talking with voters as they exit the polls asking them what's been driving them on this election day. tamron hall has an early look at
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the results of our exit polling and the mood in america. >> hey there, brian, good evening, we've been asking this question for quite some time. do you think the country is heading in the right direction or the wrong direction? four years ago, let's take a look at the numbers there. in 2010, 61% felt that the country was going in the wrong direction. in that midterm election democrats suffered the big losses in both the house and senate. now, let's fast forward to where we are now. 2014. that number has ticked up 65%. believe we're headed in the wrong direction. with that backdrop in mind, keep this question in your mind, we asked voters how life will be for the next generation of americans. in the year 2000, nearly 48% said life would be better. well today take a look at this number. 22% hold that same view whereas 48%, brian, say, it will be worse for the next generation. that's a bit of the information coming in already. >> as we said, folks in a sour
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mood heading into the polls today and tonight. we'll see how that manifests itself tonight. for that our entire team will be with us all evening long as these results come in. as we said we're back on the air for a full hour. 10:00 eastern and 9:00 central. 10:00 pacific as well. all live to get results any time you can go to there is also other news on this election day. we're learning a lot more tonight about the moments just before and after the explosion of that virgin galactic rocket plane four days ago over the california desert. while the co-pilot was killed, the pilot was able to get out and survive. once again, on that story tonight, jacob rascon in the mojave desert. good evening. >> reporter: brian, good evening. it is almost unbelievable that anybody could survive a rocket plane crash at the speed of sound, but new information from sources close to the investigation make peter
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siebold's story of survival even more astonishing. sources close to the investigation of the failed virgin galactic test flight tell nbc news at 45,000 feet after co-pilot michaelalsbury prematurely unlocked the planes's tails or feathers and they deployed, it broke up around the pilots thrusting them at the speed of sound into an atmosphere with almost no oxygen. and sources confirm the pilots had no oxygen supply of their own outside the aircraft. both crewmen were wearing parachutes but only pilot peter siebold was able to deploy his. investigators theorize eitheralsbury's parachute failed or he blacked out and was never able to deploy it. the ntsb says wreckage landed as far as 35 miles away from the original debris field. in a statement released today richard branson praised the company's 400 engineers and technicians and says, while this is a tragic setback, we are
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moving forward and will do so deliberately and with determination. one industry watcher says this accident, while tragic, will not cripple the drive to space tourism. >> i think the industry can recover. >> there will be a much more attention now on both how these vehicles are built from an engineering standpoint and a regulation standpoint. >> reporter: and one investigators finally do interview siebold, they hope to find out whial y als bury has pd that lever. it has already met its goal of $100,000. >> jacob rascon in the mojave desert tonight, thanks. this striking video showing a woman grabbed off a city street. and, thankfully, investigators are on a clue that's bringing them closer to the suspect's tail tonight. later why a big arrival was something of a surprise in los angeles. (announcer) are you dealing with hot flashes during menopause?
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we're back with these images that have sparked a man hunt going on in two states thpy show a young woman walking alone when a man suddenly approaches her, attacks her and drags her to his car. whether the suspect knew it or not, it was all captured by a surveillance camera. luckily more clues have now presented themselves in this case. we begin our report from nbc's rehema ellis. >> reporter: this disturbing three-minute surveillance video shows a young woman's desperate struggle. police say 22-year-old carlesha gaither was kidnapped sunday night in the germantown second of philadelphia. today her mother begged for her daughter's life. >> my baby. give me my child. please. >> reporter: the video shows a gray ford taurus being parked. minutes later a heavily built man is seen approaching gaither
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violently dragging her down the street and shoving her into the car where authorities believe she kicked out one of the car windows. police say after the abduction they found the young woman's glasses and cell phone here on the sidewalk. today police released photos of a man using gaither's atm card early monday morning at a bank in aberdeen, maryland. that's 75 miles south of where she was taken. it is also the place her grandmother says she calls home for most of her life. >> she's a very strong person and i have a lot of faith in her and i have a lot of faith in god. i know she's going o the make it through. >> reporter: her sister says he was pursuing a nursing career. >> she's really a sweetheart. she loved animals. she's just a free person. >> reporter: this afternoon back at the crime scene. >> we're going through every step and we're going through everything, you know, twice, to make sure we didn't miss anything. >> reporter: tonight a $45,000 reward is being offered. as a family clings to each other
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and the hope that their loved one comes home. >> please bring her home. >> please bring her home. >> reporter: rehema ellis, nbc news, germantown, pennsylvania. when we come back here this evening, something remarkable in hawaii. we'll show you what's been spared by the lava flow on the big island. the future to life. for more than 145 years, pacific life has been helping families achieve life-long financial security with innovative tools and strategies. talk to a financial advisor to protect your family and plan today. pacific life. the power to help you succeed. two words: it heals.e different? how? with heat. unlike creams and rubs that mask the pain, thermacare has patented heat cells that penetrate deep to increase circulation and accelerate healing. let's review:
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minnesota vikings running back adrian peterson has pleaded out to a lesser charge in a deal with prosecutors to avoid a felony child abuse case. peterson pleaded no contest to a reduced misdemeanor. he took full responsibility for his actions. he'll pay a fine, serve 80 hours of community service. his future with the nfl is uncertain. in hawaii tonight on the big island, something of a freak of nature as the slow flow of lava overtakes the hillside including a japanese cemetery in the town
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of pa hoa. but it speared this stone. the family is relieve to see it has been spared. it is surrounded by hardened volcanic rock. hawaii democratic congresswoman a former mp and captain in the army has been activated by the national guard. she's expected to win re-election tonight from congress. following tonight she'll be on duty with her guard unit providing assistance in the area of the lava flow. the feds have fined ringling brothers and barnum and bailey circus $7,000 for an incident in rhode island back in may. it was a stunt featuring acrobats hanging by their hair. you may recall that the mishap sent eight of them falling 15 feet to the ground. some sustained serious injuries. 7,0$7,000 happens to be the maxm fine that osha is allowed to impose in such a case for safety violations. the spokesman for the company that operates the circus said it disagreed with osha's
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conclusions but will follow osha's guidelines for rigging equipment when the tour resumes in 2015. big buzz in l.a. over a big new arrival. for the first time in 26 years the l.a. zoo has welcomed the birth of a healthy baby hippo. it was something of a surprise because -- how to put this -- they were using protection. the mother hippo mara was put on birth control a while back but apparently no one briefed the father hippo armanda. hippo gestation is eight months. the zoo is happy because the family of three is bonding. the baby will be a major attraction. when we come back, it might change your mind about car dealers when you see what one of them has done for the life of a young man. hey, how you doin'? it hurts. this is what it can be like to have shingles, a painful, blistering rash. if you had chicken pox, the shingles virus is already inside you.
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if it's severe, stop taking linzess and call your doctor right away. other side effects include, gas, stomach-area pain and swelling. bottom line, ask your doctor about linzess today. finally tonight, a car dealership is not first place that comes to mind when you think about what could make a real difference in someone's life. but for one teenager in minnesota who happens to love cars, it has done just that, giving him a new window on the world. we get the story tonight from correspondent boyd hooper of our station kare in the twin cities. >> thank you for calling.
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>> reporter: by now you've been to enough car dealerships to know all the players. >> hang on one moment, please. >> reporter: but unless you've been to the ford dealership in apple valley, odds are you've never met a player quite like this. >> how's it going? >> good. >> reporter: jake nelson has had a lifetime obsession with cars, which led instinctively to his fascination with car lots. >> we've been to hondas, chevys, all the different once. >> name brands. we've been there. >> reporter: but last year father and son stopped at the lot of apple ford lincoln. and for the first time a salesman paid attention to him. matt liukin introduced jake to some of his dealership co-workers. >> how are you? >> good. >> reporter: and from there things took off. don't bother looking for an unlocked door at apple ford lincoln or a wheel that's not straight or a bumper over the line. >> he feels like he's a part of
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something. >> reporter: it's hard, as parents, to be told your 3-year-old will never read or write or ever drive one of those cars he love, but at 17, jake has found his place. >> keep her going. >> reporter: several times a week jake's parents bring him by after school to tend to his lot. that's the senior sales manager he's leading around. to see jake so at least. picking the colors for the showroom display. a mom can't say thank you enough to the employees of a car dealership who shared a little. >> uh-oh. did you find one? >> yeah. >> reporter: and gave a lot. >> i think we did pretty good. >> reporter: for nbc news, boyd hoopert, apple valley, minnesota. >> that's our broadcast for this tuesday, election ho night. thank you for being here with us. one last reminder, we'll have election updates. then we're back for our decision 2014 special hour at 10:00, 9:00
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central. i'm brian williams. of course, we hope to see you back here tomorrow evening as well. for here and for now, good night. i'm jim rosenfield. nbc keeping you up to date for election day coverage. polls open for another hour in pennsylvania, new jersey and delaware. up for grabs is governor. a live look for both candidates
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planned election night parties. governor corbett in pittsburgh, tom at his home in york. luckily in 2nd, 3rd and 4th. several state races for attorney general and auditor. can you get relitime election results on your mobile device using free nbc 10 news app. download by going to news app we'll be back for another update in an hour when the polls close. for now we send you back to regular programming. i'm jim rosenfield. didn't tell them. >> you better stop. "extra's" got oprah. >> the only place you can see may favorite things. plus -- >> jimmy kimmel, the halloween grinch, is back. >> you ruined my life! now on "extra," from universal studios hollywood, the


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