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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  October 2, 2021 5:30pm-6:00pm PDT

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now she lived in madeira. out to the game they went. local first responders stopped by to wish her a very happy 113th birthday. my gosh she has seen so much. happy birthday to you. thanks for watching. "nightly news" is next. tonight, fighting for a deal president biden in a full court press to salvage his massive infrastructure bill. and quiet the divisions within his own party. the new timeline to pass the bill and how the president says he's going to get there. >> going to work like hell to make sure we get these passed protest nation a new round of women's marches across the country today. tens of thousands demonstrating against laws restricting access to abortion. and are we turning a corner covid cases, hospitalizations, and deaths all trending down nationwide the first comprehensive study of mask mandates in schools. do they work to prevent outbreaks? we have the results.
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explosive new allegations against male coaches of women's professional soccer. all players boycotting their games this weekend the hall of fame inductee who refused her award today and the outrage that nothing was done sooner the league commissioner forced to resign. plus, historic hot streak the "jeopardy!" champ who just surpassed one of the game's greatest is ken jennings' record next? good evening the high drama over the president's massive infrastructure bill is not taking the weekend off. the president is going all in in an effort to get his own party to agree on his top legislative priority after hi vs raisreit to capitol hill yesterday, mr. biden is now vowing to work the phones this weekend, host lawmakers at the white house in the coming days, and even tour the country to sell the deal to the american people how far apart are the various factions
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monica alvarez is at the white house with more >> reporter: despite a deadlocked democratic party, president biden confident his signature infrastructure agenda will pass. >> i believe i can get this done >> reporter: pledging to, quote, work like hell after a rebellion from progressives held up any votes on the legislation this week >> what is your message to moderates who are frustrated with the delay in the vote >> everybody's frustrated it's part of being in government, being frustrated >> reporter: democrats haven't been able to reach an agreement on advancing the president's $1.2 trillion physical infrastructure package without the still-unfinished $3.5 trillion social safety net and climate change plan. the president telling lawmakers friday the price tag for that so-called human infrastructure bill will shrink significantly. >> i'm a realist i've been -- i was a senator a long time. i know how legislation gets done
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>> reporter: conceding the two proposals will have to be linked to succeed >> it's the moderates and progressives to get more votes >> reporter: alluding to democratic holdouts joe manchin and kyrsten sinema, opposed to the larger spending plan, further fueling an interparty battle with senator sinema calling the postponement, quote, inexcusable and an ineffective stunt. while progressive congresswoman pramila jayapal defended the current pause. >> we have to finish it we'll take as long as it takes >> reporter: but the president still reluctant to offer any prediction for final passage. >> it doesn't matter whether it's in six minutes, six days, or six weeks >> monica joins us from the white house. speaker pelosi set a new timeline for the bills today. >> reporter: the speaker indicated a vote on the physical infrastructure bill should take place this month, but there's no date set yet either for those plans. jose >> monica alba at the white
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house, thank you so much today tens of thousands turned out at women's marches across the country to protest strict new abortion laws emily has more [ chants ] >> reporter: coast to coast -- [ chants ] an army of women - >> we believe in women. >> reporter: defending reproductive rights. >> i believe that we will win >> reporter: hundreds of gatherings under way in communities across the country. why was it important to you to be part of this effort today? >> i think not all voices are heard, and the voices of women are oppressed. >> reporter: a women's march on this scale, the largest since 2017 the day after president trump was inaugurated. texas' new restrictive abortion law powering the steps of hundreds here in l.a. and thousands across the country. now in effect for a month, it bans abortions once a fetal heartbeat is detected, as early as the sixth week of pregnancy, before many women even know they're pregnant and it makes no exceptions for rape or incest
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americans divided on the issue. in d.c. a smaller gathering outside of the supreme court today. anti-abortion rights advocates praying for the unborn >> today we come before you almighty father -- >> reporter: congresswoman cat cammack defending texas's law on capitol hill this week >> i would not be here had it not been for the brave choice that my mother made 33 years ago. >> reporter: opponents say that was her mom's personal decision, and all women deserve the choice >> no one, specifically the government, has a right to step in and say, hey, you know, we're going to take that away from you. >> emilie joins us from los angeles. that texas law is now in front of a federal judge >> reporter: that's right, a federal judge will weigh in on texas' new abortion law, though it's not clear when. jose >> thank you the u.s. hit another tragic milestone in its fight against covid this week,
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surpassing 700,000 deaths but there may be some good news on the horizon cases, hospitalizations, and deaths are all trending down leaving many to wonder if we've finally hit a turning point. here's kathy park. >> reporter: tonight numbers trending in the right direction with nationwide covid deaths, cases, and hospitalizations all down at ochsner health in louisiana, hospitals hit hard by covid now breathing some sigh of relief going from more than 1,000 of cases at the beginning of august to now roughly 200 would you say the country's turning a corner >> the country's definitely turning a corner number one, vaccines, they're working. they're making an impact number two, some of the things that we've talked about before, limits in crowds, indoor masks where possible and testing. third is really a conscious effort to try to limit cases if someone has symptoms >> reporter: in new york city and san francisco where proof of vaccination has been required for indoor dining, gyms, and
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theaters since mid-august, both cities have at least a 70% vaccination rate for one dose the numbers even higher among new york city public school employees. a 90% vaccination rate ahead of monday's mandate >> the data is clear when organizations implement vaccines requirements, vaccination rates soar to 90% or greater. >> reporter: some of the nation's largest airlines following suit friday. american, alaska, and jetblue all join united airlines in requiring vaccines for their employees. meanwhile, more promising news on the horizon with a new anti-viral pill that could reduce the risk of hospitalization and death by 50% among covid patients drugmaker merck says it's on pace to submit the drug for emergency use authorization as soon as possible >> this is a profound game changer to have an oral pill that had this kind of effect >> how soon can we see the approval process get going?
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>> reporter: jose, health officials hope to take action the next several weeks. once that emergency use application comes through, we should also note there are other companies with similar pills in the pipeline jose >> kathy park in massachusetts. thank you. and communities across the country there have been raging debates over masks in schools. many questioning the danger covid poses to children others questioning the effectiveness of masks. now we have our first comprehensive study of whether masks work in preventing outbreaks in schools steve patterson has the results. >> reporter: it's the early school morning rush for mom rachel clausen >> all right you want to wear that one? >> reporter: which now includes making sure her 8-year-old daughter is wearing a mask she says that routine is critical because her kids attend a mesa public school the state's largest district and has no mask mandate in school until after there's a covid outbreak, though they strongly encourage staff and students to
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wear masks while indoors. >> it's very stressful. we had instances already where she's had exposures. we thought about switching to other school districts. >> reporter: now a new cdc study shows she's right to be concerned. researchers analyzed data from nearly 1,000 k-through-12 public schools in arizona's two most populated counties some had mask mandates for students and staff from the first day of classes others required masks later or not at all what did they find schools without mask mandates were 3.5 times more likely to have a covid outbreak than schools that started the term with mask mandates >> i love that - >> reporter: the study's author says these results are already having a ripple effect >> we are certainly hearing from schools saying that because of this study that they intend to keep the policy in place longer >> reporter: in the school district they currently have nearly five cases per 1,000 students and staff, but 30 miles away in the madison school
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district in phoenix, they have less than half the number of on-site active cases per 1,000. madison school district's superintendent kenneth baca says they mandated masks indoors from day one. >> all we're trying to do is keep kids in school and keep them safe. [ cheers ] >> reporter: those protocols -- >> freedom, that's what i stand for. [ applause ] >> reporter: an increasing source of division at schools and businesses across the state. >> let us choose what is best for our children thank you. >> reporter: do the cdc findings reinforce what you've established here with mask mandates >> it reinforces it, and it's reaffirming and very comforting to know that the mitigation efforts we've taken is paying off. >> reporter: the district's mandate and new study results giving beth kohler and her two kids peace of mind >> masks and other policies like that help us keep our kids in the classroom which is where i want them to be and where they want to be >> reporter: parents now armed with new evidence about masks in a debate playing out
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across the country. steve patterson, nbc news, phoenix. still ahead tonight, new fallout over sexual misconduct allegations in women's soccer players boycotting this weekend and what happened at the hall of fame today in protest. also, a historic winning streak by a new "jeopardy!" star
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there's new fallout today from the bombshell allegations of abuse and
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misconduct that's been rocking the national women's soccer league. players have refused to take the field this weekend one even turning down a hall of fame award the growing outrage comes as many wonder why they weren't taken seriously sooner here's sam brock the goal for - >> reporter: soccer stadiums nationwide normally rocking with cheering fans, tonight sit silent a decision by the national women's soccer league players after this explosive report from "the athletic" detailing accusations of years' long abuse and sexual coercion against prominent soccer coach paul riley. >> every single player from all of these teams all spoke about the training environment around this team but also the lowering of boundaries. >> reporter: meg linehan says some of the dozen women described riley sending graphic photographs or making hurtful remarks. but for mana shim and sinead farrelly it included sexual misconduct, being pressured to kiss each other as he watched
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and worse -- >> the first time she felt coerced that's the word she uses they went into a room together and something happened and happened two more times. >> reporter: riley, who was fired by the north carolina courage thursday, couldn't be reached for comment. he adamantly denies the accusations of abuse and coercion to "the athletic," conceding only there's a chance i've said something along the way that offended someone. today ahead of a hall of fame ceremony for u.s. soccer, legendary defender kristi pierce rampone deferred her induction until next year. she says when we can all properly celebrate women's soccer >> we all should be appalled and saddened and just downright angry. i know i am. >> reporter: the league has promised an independent investigation and created an anonymous reporting channel with the commissioner resigning after riley became the second coach in a week to lose his position in the wake of accusations of abusive behavior this as the still-fledgling organization grapples
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with a toxic and predatory problem. sam brock, nbc news. switching now to "jeopardy!" where a new star is smashing records scoring the show's second longest winning streak in history with his 33rd straight win. ralph sanchez has more >> reporter: they call it the amodio rodeo >> what's elements of style? centrifuge >> reporter: for 33 games in a row, matt amodio has come out on top, asking and answering his way into the record books. >> you now have the second most consecutive wins in "jeopardy!" history. >> reporter: the yal student overtaking 32-game streak set by james holzhauer in 2019 holzhauer tweeting his congratulations, "this is the first time i've seen anyone hit a 33-game parlay," urging him, "stay hungry." but the challenger still less than halfway to the all-time record of 74 games held by ken jennings now a "jeopardy!" guest host
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a welcome moment for a tv institution struggling since the death of legendary host alex trebek his replacement, mike richards, stepping down after past offensive comments resurfaced is this a turning point for the show >> for so long, the focus has been on the host, who's going to be the next host of "jeopardy!". now the focus has turned back to the contestants. >> reporter: back on stage monday for game 34, hoping to one day make "who is matt amodio" the answer to greatest ever "jeopardy!" champion ralph sanchez, nbc news when we come back, i'll take you to houston to show you how latinos are changing the city there and making strides across the country. plus, a sad development in the search for a missing teen in florida.
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the search for a missing girl in florida has ended in tragedy. authorities believe they have found the body of miya marcano, a college student who went missing a week ago near an apartment building in orlando. the orange county sheriff has said a maintenance worker who has killed himself is considered a prime suspect in her disappearance. as part of this hispanic heritage month we're going to look at how the latino population is growing not just in size but in wealth. salaries are growing faster for latinos than for any other segment of the population i went to houston to find out why. from artists to construction
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magnates, dancers to entrepreneurs -- ♪ this is the new latino america. >> more than ever the latino voice is really stronger >> and it's growing. the american dream for many, for millions, is still alive. is it especially alive in houston? >> absolutely alive. and in this city, you have countless numbers of people who have made it, are giving back. >> houston, texas, what u.s. census data shows is the most diverse city in the u.s., now home to the most successful and vibrant latino population in the country. >> this is my childhood neighborhood the president of the houston hispanic chamber of commerce grew up on the avenues of the barrio and worked in her parents' restaurant. she's now a bestselling author and credits her success partly to her education the first of her family to go to college. >> you know, you can come from an avenue and still succeed.
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>> and the latest data shows how much more successful latinos have become. over the past ten years, they've grown wealthier and more educated as a matter of fact, the number of households making $100,000 a year doubling since 2010 over that same period, latino incomes have grown more than any other groups >> my family was looking for a safer place to be. >> reporter: roberto contreras came to the u.s. for college in the '80s from mexico city he's overseen five high-end condo projects >> it doesn't matter if you're latino or not latino you're an immigrant, you come and work hard. >> now this is his biggest project to date -- a skyscraper overlooking the downtown hub is there something about america, the american dream that you think is unique? >> absolutely. absolutely and it's a lot easier to see that when you come from outside of the u.s you see very clear the american dream.
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you see very clear that there's an opportunity >> there are thriving artists here gonzo 247 is a street artist, now an entrepreneur with commissions from the city >> here in houston the hispanic community is really starting to make itself known. >> and dancers, too. >> i was always a science major, business major, and i never focused on dance >> originally from panama, he opened the first salsa studio latino small business owners are now the fastest growing group of entrepreneurs in the u.s. >> the one thing that i am advocating and really working on is also to show that within the latino community where you see people like me in positions of leadership and actually have an impact on the community. >> do you think you've succeeded in your american dream? >> i think you cannot say you succeeded because then you quit dreaming, right? when we come back, singing
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changed one man's life how he's using it to heal others ♪
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there's good news tonight about the gift of song and how one man used it to transform himself and help so many others. ♪ here at the robert board johnson university hospital in new jersey, this is the sound of hope
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♪ so we pour out our praise ♪ >> 28-year-old enrique works as a phlebotomist with the gift of song talk about when you decided to sing to your patients. >> i figured why not try to bring music to my patients >> the singing phlebotomist now a tiktok star. first found his calling after singing to michelle lucy >> he was there, and it just lifted my spirits. ♪ >> and that's when i felt it -- i'm called to step into rooms where there's anxiety and bring peace, joy, and love ♪ >> you've had a difficult time at times in your life. >> i had an older brother. me and him were at the hip. he had to go away for some time. it left me alone and seeking a family and i joined a gang. it was some of the
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hardest years of my life >> but finding faith and purpose helped him through it all. >> the lord was speaking to me and saying, i don't want you to y ildren, i want you to heal them. >> he did singing in church ♪ with the help of leila heinrich, his music teacher. >> he's literally with them in the darkest moment in possibly their last moment, and he's offering them that comfort. >> he made it seem that there was hope at the end of the tunnel >> a lifelong mission showered with song. at the end of the day, what do you think will be a life well lived for enrique rodriguez? >> life where enrique can love and bless everyone wherever they go to put love in their hearts and have them feel peace and joy. ♪ you pulled the rug ♪ >> enrique's volunteering to sing during his time off to more patients at the
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hospital that's "nbc nightly news" for this saturday. i'm jose diaz-balart thank you for the privilege of your time, and good night. ♪ show of solidarity demanding abortion rights for women. how the bay area joined the movement. the news at 6 starts right
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now. good evening. thanks for joining us. all across the bay area women stood up to march por reproductive rights. in san jose this is right outside city hall. there were more than 600 marches planned across the country. nbc bay area's christie smith with more from san francisco. >> reporter: in san francisco people lined up for blocks to march down market street carrying signs with a unified message. >> my body! >> reporter: after a new texas law that bans nearly all abortions in the state, demonstrators said it was time to speak out against it. alley po lom owe felt compelled to act. >> stand up for our rights. >> reporter: many were concerned other states could adopt similar laws restricting abortion access and the supreme court denial of the law. people are marching for the new term. some carried signs


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