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    NBC Nightly News Broadcast (Full) – July 29th, 2020 | NBC Nightly News

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    HIGHEST DAILY DEATH TOLL IN MONTHS AS THE COVID PANDEMIC REACHES DANGEROUS NEW PROPORTIONS A FEDERAL REPORT FINDING 21 STATES NOW CONSIDERED RED ZONES AND DR

    FAUCI'S NEW WARNING ABOUT OUTBREAKS IN NEW STATES >>> ALSO, A GOP CONGRESSMAN FROM TEXAS WHO UNTIL RECENTLY REFUSED TO WEAR A MASK AND WHO PLANNED TO TRAVEL TODAY WITH THE PRESIDENT TESTS POSITIVE >>> PLUS, DR FAUCI HITTING BACK SAYING THE VIDEO PRESIDENT TRUMP SHARED ABOUT HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE ISN'T TRUE >>> FEDERAL AGENTS NOW BEING DEPLOYED TO MORE CITIES AND NEW INFORMATION ABOUT THAT ARREST OF A PROTESTER IN NEW YORK USING AN UNMARKED VAN, CAUSING A STORM OF CONTROVERSY

    >>> THE CEOs OF APPLE, AMAZON, FACEBOOK AND GOOGLE ALL UNDER FIRE, BLASTED AS EMPERORS OF THE ONLINE ECONOMY >>> NEW CLUES ABOUT ONE OF JOE BIDEN'S POTENTIAL RUNNING MATE A DECISION COMING WITHIN DAYS >>> THE INFERNO AND BRIDGE COLLAPSE AFTER A TRAIN DERAILED PHELPS NEW MESSAGE ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH AND THE PANDEMIC

    >>> THIS IS NBC "NIGHTLY NEWS" WITH LESTER HOLT >>> GOOD EVENING, EVERYONE FOR PLACES APPEARING TO ESCAPE THE WORST OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, THIS NEWS TONIGHT IT'S COMING NEW STATES IN THE MIDDLE OF THE COUNTRY NOW SEEING FRESH HOT SPOTS

    AND WITH THAT, TOP INFECTIOUS DISEASE DOC ANTHONY FAUCI WARNING THAT MANY OTHERS MAY BE ON THE VERGE OF OUTBREAKS AND THAT IT WILL SNEAK UP STATES THE NUMBER OF STATES IN THE RED ZONE ARE EXPANDING AS PARENTS AND TEACHERS WEIGH CRITICAL QUESTIONS ABOUT THE UPCOMING SCHOOL YEAR A LOT TO PROCESS TONIGHT AS MIGUEL ALMAGUER STARTS US OFF >> Reporter: THE TROUBLING SIGNS OF A NEW OUTBREAK ARE NOW EMERGING IN STATES LIKE OHIO, INDIANA, KENTUCKY AND TENNESSEE THE NATION'S TOP INFECTIOUS DISEASE DOCTOR WARNING SEVERAL AMERICAN CITIES WHO HAVE MOSTLY AVOIDED COVID'S CRIPPLING CRUSH ARE NOW ON THE VERGE OF BEING HIT HARD

    >> IF YOU ARE NOT GETTING YOUR ARMS AROUND AND SUPPRESSING THAT SURGE THAT'S COMING UP TWO TO THREE WEEKS DOWN THE PIKE, YOU'RE IN TROUBLE >> Reporter: THE NEED FOR MORE STATES TO TAKE SERIOUS PRECAUTIONS COME AMID A FEDERAL REPORT SHOWING 21 STATES IN THE RED ZONE HOT SPOTS WHERE AT LEAST 100 NEW CASES ARE CONFIRMED FOR EVERY 100,000 PEOPLE WITH FLORIDA AND CALIFORNIA BOTH REPORTING A NEW SINGLE DAY RECORD FOR FATALITIES, YESTERDAY THE NATION HIT ITS HIGHEST DAILY DEATH TOLL SINCE MAY IN CITIES LIKE LOS ANGELES, WHERE RESOURCES WERE STRETCHED THIN, NURSES ARE DEMANDING BETTER STAFFING AND MORE PROTECTION BEFORE THE NEXT SURGE IN CASES

    AS SCHOOL DISTRICTS ACROSS THE COUNTRY STRUGGLE OVER HOW TO RETURN TO THE CLASSROOM, CITIES LIKE PHILADELPHIA REVERSING COURSE NOW PLANNING TO START THE SCHOOL YEAR 100% ONLINE THIS AS ONE TEACHER'S UNION SAYS IT WILL SUPPORT A STRIKE BY ITS 17 MILLION MEMBERS IF THEY DON'T FEEL SAFE TEACHING IN PERSON DR

    ANTHONY FAUCI WITH THIS ADVICE FOR INSTRUCTORS >> THE MINIMAL THINGS YOU MIGHT WANT TO DO IS YOU COULD USE JUST A MASK AND EYE GOGGLES AND POSSIBLY GLOVES NOW, WHAT YOU MIGHT WANT TO DO, IF YOU CAN, WOULD BE TO PUT SOMETHING ON THAT YOU CAN DISPOSE OF OR WASH AFTER A CLASS >> Reporter: THE SERIOUS SAFETY MEASURES COME AS MORE FAMILIES LOSE LOVED ONES AT WASHINGTON'S NATIONAL CATHEDRAL

    >> JOSEPH ALEXANDER TOLLICK >> Reporter: THEY PAUSE FOR EVERY LIFE LOST THEIR NAMES AND LIVES ARE NOT FORGOTTEN >> Reporter: BUT THERE ARE ALSO DAILY REMINDERS OF HOPE IN NEW YORK, A STANDING OVATION FOR DETECTIVE MIKE SMITH, FINALLY GOING HOME AFTER A 100-DAY BATTLE AGAINST COVID

    A MOMENT OF INSPIRATION FOR A NATION IN NEED OF JUST THAT MIGUEL ALMAGUER, NBC NEWS LOS ANGELES >>> TONIGHT ANOTHER COVID SCARE IN WASHINGTON AFTER A REPUBLICAN CONGRESSMAN TESTED POSITIVE BEFORE HE WAS SUPPOSED TO TRAVEL TO TEXAS WITH THE PRESIDENT AND DR ANTHONY FAUCI IS RESPONDING TO THE PRESIDENT'S RETWEET OF A VIDEO THAT FALSELY CLAIMED THERE WAS A CURE

    HERE'S KRISTEN WELKER >> Reporter: PRESIDENT TRUMP AIMING TO ENERGIZE SUPPORTERS IN TEXAS WHERE THE POLLS ARE TIGHT BUT HIS TRIP WAS OVERSHADOWED BY COVID TEXAS REPUBLICAN CONGRESSMAN LOUIE GOMER PLANNING TO TRAVEL ON AIR FORCE ONE TWEETING THAT HE HAD TESTED POSITIVE >> I'M ASYMPTOMATIC BUT APPARENTLY I HAVE THE WUHAN VIRUS

    >> Reporter: GOMER FREQUENTLY SEEN WITHOUT A MASK EVEN FOR PART OF YESTERDAY TODAY BLAMED MASK WEARING WITHOUT ANY EVIDENCE >> I CAN'T HELP BUT WONDER IF BY HAVING A MASK ON AND KEEPING IT IN PLACE IF I MIGHT HAVE PUT SOME GERMS OF SOME OF THE VIRUS AND BREATHED IT IN >> Reporter: AFTER THE PRESIDENT WAS PROMOTING THE CONTROVERSIAL DRUG HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE SAYING SOCIAL DISTANCING AND WEARING MASKS IS UNNECESSARY THE DOCTOR AT THE FOREFRONT PEDDLES IN CONSPIRACY THEORIES >> SHE'S MAKING A STATEMENT ABOUT HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE WITH OTHER DOCTORS

    THEY SWEAR BY IT THEY THINK IT'S GREAT SHE WAS NOT ALONE >> Reporter: ON MSNBC, TOP NIH DOCTOR ANTHONY FAUCI SAID STUDIES SHOW HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE IS NOT EFFECTIVE AT TREATING COVID >> WHEN THERE IS A VIDEO OUT THERE, THE ONLY RESOURCE YOU HAVE IS TO BE VERY, VERY CLEAR IN PRESENTING THE SCIENTIFIC DATA THAT ESSENTIALLY CONTRADICTS THAT

    >> Reporter: JOE BIDEN EXCORIATING THE PRESIDENT TODAY >> THE PRESIDENT NEEDS TO STOP TWEETING AND START DOING SOMETHING ABOUT IT, DAMMIT >> AMEN >> AND STOP TALKING ABOUT THIS CRAZY WOMAN HE TALKED ABOUT LAST NIGHT WHO IS AN ABSOLUTE DISGRACE >> AND KRISTIN JOINS ME NOW

    TELL US ABOUT THIS NEW FALL-OUT IN WAKE OF THAT CONGRESSMAN TESTING POSITIVE WITH THE VIRUS WHAT ARE YOU HEARING? >> Reporter: WELL, THAT'S RIGHT, LESTER HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI TONIGHT ANNOUNCING A MASK MANDATE ON THE HOUSE FLOOR AFTER GOMER TESTED POSITIVE AT LEAST TWO LAWMAKERS ARE PLANNING TO SELF-QUARANTINE AND THE ATTORNEY GENERAL GOT TESTED FOR COVID AFTER APPEARING AT A HEARING ON TUESDAY LESTER? >> ALL RIGHT

    KRISTEN WELKER AT THE WHITE HOUSE THANK YOU >>> THE ARREST OF A PROTESTER LAST NIGHT BY POLICE IN NEW YORK HAS STRUCK A RAW NERVE AS THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION ANNOUNCED PLANS TO DEPLOY MORE FEDERAL AGENTS TO MORE AMERICAN CITIES >> Reporter: THE NEW YORK CITY POLICE OFFICERS IN PLAINCLOTHES GRABBED A YOUNG PROTESTER AND FORCED HER INSIDE AN UNMARKED VAN OTHER BYSTANDERS RUSHED OVER

    UNIFORMED OFFICERS KEPT THEM AWAY USING BICYCLES AS BARRIERS >> I THINK IT WAS THE WRONG TIME AND THE WRONG PLACE TO EFFECTUATE THAT ARREST >> Reporter: THE NYPD SAID THE PROTESTER WAS WANTED FOR DAMAGING POLICE CAMERAS DURING FIVE SEPARATE INCIDENTS AROUND CITY HALL BUT THE WAY THE ARREST WAS HANDLED IS SPARKING OUTRAGE >> THEY ACTUALLY SNATCHED UP AND TOOK A WOMAN THAT WAS A PART OF OUR MARCH IN THE VAN AND DROVE OFF, WHICH INITIATED THE AGGRESSION FROM OUR CAMP

    >> Reporter: THE VIDEO IS DRAWING COMPARISONS TO PORTLAND WHERE FEDERAL AGENTS IN TACTICAL GEAR TOOK PROTESTERS INTO VANS EARLIER THIS MONTH LOCAL OFFICIALS HAD SAID THE FEDERAL PRESENCE WAS ESCALATING THE VIOLENT CLASHES THERE TODAY OREGON'S GOVERNOR SAYS THE FEDS HAVE AGREED TO WITHDRAW FROM THE AREA >> Reporter: THAT WOULD INCLUDE THIS FENCE THE CITY IS FINING THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT $500 EVERY 15 MINUTES IT REMAINS IN PLACE

    THAT'S $48,000 A DAY >> Reporter: BUT THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION SAYS THEY WILL ONLY PULL BACK ONCE LOCAL AND STATE OFFICIALS PROVE THEY CAN PROTECT FEDERAL PROPERTY >> WE'RE NOT LEAVING UNTIL THEY HAVE SECURED THEIR CITY >> Reporter: THE DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY ALSO ANNOUNCED TODAY THAT IT WAS SENDING FEDERAL AGENTS, NOT TACTICAL TEAMS TO HELP FIGHT CRIME IN THREE MORE CITIES, CLEVELAND, DETROIT AND MILWAUKEE STILL, IN A DIVIDED COUNTRY, THE ARREST IN NEW YORK IS IGNITING AND A FIERCE DEBATE ABOUT LAW ENFORCEMENT TACTICS

    SOME OF THE PROTESTERS HAVE BEEN ASSAULTING OFFICERS AND IT COULD HAVE BEEN MORE DANGEROUS TO GO INTO THE PROTESTS IN UNIFORM AND TRY TO MAKE AN ARREST LESTER? >> ALL RIGHT GABE GUTIERREZ THANK YOU >>> FOUR GIANTS OF THE TECH WORLD WERE ON THE HOT SEAT, INCLUDING FOR THE FIRST TIME AMAZON'S JEFF BEZOS

    THEIR COMPANIES ACCUSED OF HAVING TOO MUCH POWER, AND THAT IS HURTING CONSUMERS HERE'S JO LING KENT >> Reporter: THE ANTITRUST HEARING WAS CONTENTIOUS FROM THE START >> THAT'S NOT A SUSPICIOUS THAT'S A FACT

    >> Reporter: FOUR OF THE MOST POWERFUL TECH CEOs APPEARING VIRTUALLY CONGRESS INVESTIGATING IF THEIR COMPANIES ARE TOO BIG >> SIMPLY PUT, THEY HAVE TOO MUCH POWER OUR FOUNDERS WOULD NOT BOW BEFORE A KING, NOR SHOULD WE BOW BEFORE THE EMPERORS OF THE ONLINE ECONOMY >> Reporter: JEFF BEZOS, THE RICHEST MAN IN AMERICA, FACING CRITICISM OVER A WALL STREET JOURNAL REPORT THAT AMAZON USES INFORMATION FROM SMALL COMPANIES TO DEVELOP COMPETING PRODUCTS THAT ARE CHEAPER

    >> DOES AMAZON EVER ACCESS AND USE THIRD PARTY DATA WHEN MAKING BUSINESS DECISIONS? >> I CAN'T ANSWER THAT QUESTION YES OR NO WHAT I CAN TELL YOU IS WE HAVE A POLICY AGAINST USING SELLER SPECIFIC DATA TO AID OUR PRIVATE LABEL BUSINESS BUT I CAN'T GUARANTEE YOU THAT THAT POLICY HAS NEVER BEEN VIOLATED >> Reporter: FACEBOOK CEO MARK ZUCKERBERG PRESSED ON HIS ACQUISITION OF INSTAGRAM >> IN YOUR OWN WORDS, YOU PURCHASED INSTAGRAM TO NEUTRALIZE A COMPETITIVE THREAT

    WHY SHOULDN'T INSTAGRAM NOW BE BROKEN INTO A SEPARATE COMPANY? >> CONGRESSMAN, I THINK THE SEC HAS ALL THESE DOCUMENTS AND REVIEWED THIS AND UNANIMOUSLY VOTED AT THE TIME NOT TO CHALLENGE THE ACQUISITION >> Reporter: AND GOOGLE CEO QUESTIONED ABOUT THE COMPANY'S ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE LAB IN CHINA >> GENERAL DUNFORD, DOES YOUR COMPANY DIRECTLY AID THE CHINESE MILITARY? >> CONGRESSMAN, WITH RESPECT, WE ARE NOT WORKING WITH THE CHINESE MILITARY >> Reporter: CONGRESS AIMS TO FINISH ITS INVESTIGATION BY THE END OF THE YEAR BUT IN THE TECH COMMUNITY, THERE IS SKEPTICISM IT WILL LEAD TO REAL CHANGE

    LESTER? >> JO LING KENT, THANKS >>> TONIGHT IN ATLANTA A LONG LINE OF MOURNERS PAYING RESPECTS TO CONGRESSMAN JOHN LEWIS ARRIVING BACK IN THE DISTRICT HE REPRESENTED FOR MORE THAN THREE DECADES AND BLAINE ALEXANDER IS THERE >> Reporter: ONE FINAL TRIP HOME FOR CONGRESSMAN JOHN LEWIS HIS PROCESSION WEAVING ITS WAY THROUGH ATLANTA, THE CITY HE SERVED FOR 33 YEARS, LEAVING HIS UNDENIABLE FOOTPRINT, PAUSING AT THE WALLS BEARING HIS IMAGE, THE STREET BEARING HIS NAME

    AND THE FINAL RESTING PLACE OF DR MARTIN LUTHER KING JR >> FROM 18 TO 80, THAT'S A GOOD SOLDIER >> Reporter: FORMER ATLANTA MAYOR AND CIVIL RIGHTS ICON ANDREW YOUNG WAS RIGHT THERE WITH HIM >> JOHN'S ELOQUENCE WAS IN BEING PRESENT AT THE SCENE OF INJUSTICE AND STANDING TALL

    >> Reporter: THAT'S WHY UNDER THE GOLD DOME OF GEORGIA STATE CAPITAL, FOR CONGRESSMAN LEWIS, A HERO'S FAREWELL >> AMERICA AND THE STATE OF GEORGIA WILL BE FOREVER STRONGER, FREER AND MORE JUST BECAUSE OF CONGRESSMAN JOHN LEWIS >> ALTHOUGH THE FIGHT FOR LIBERTY AND EQUALITY CONTINUES, CONGRESSMAN LEWIS REMINDED US TO BE HOPEFUL >> Reporter: OUTSIDE, HUNDREDS WAITED THEIR TURN TO SAY SIMPLY THANK YOU >> THE OBLIGATION IS TO KEEP HIS LEGACY GOING

    AND TO NOT LET IT DIE WITH HIM >> Reporter: WHAT DO YOU THINK HIS LEGACY WILL BE? >> IT IS LEGACY IS A STUBBORN DETERMINATION AND HUMILITY TO FULFILL THE DREAM THAT HE AND MARTIN LUTHER KING SHARED, TO HELP AMERICA LIVE OUT THE TRUE MEANING OF HER CREEDS >> Reporter: WE JUST LEARNED FORMER PRESIDENT OBAMA WILL DELIVER THE EULOGY AT THE FUNERAL HELD HERE TOMORROW LESTER? >> ALL RIGHT BLAINE ALEXANDER, THANK YOU

    >>> TONIGHT INVESTIGATORS IN A PHOENIX SUBURB ARE TRYING TO DETERMINE WHAT CAUSED A FREIGHT TRAIN TO DERAIL AND GO UP IN FLAMES WHILE CROSSING A BRIDGE IN TEMPE, SENDING SMOKE BILLOWING IN THE AIR AND PARTIALLY COLLAPSING THAT BRIDGE OFFICIALS SAY IT IS AMAZING THAT NO ONE WAS HURT >>> MILLIONS ACROSS THE CARIBBEAN ARE BRACING FOR A TROPICAL THREAT TONIGHT THE TOMORROW IS MOVING NORTHWEST RIGHT NOW AND COULD IMPACT PUERTO RICO HIGH WINDS, HEAVY RAIN, LIFE THREATENING FLASH FLOODS AND MUD SLIDES

    FORECASTERS ARE WARNING THE STORM COULD APPROACH FLORIDA THIS WEEKEND AND WE WILL, OF COURSE, CONTINUE TO WATCH IT >>> IN 60 SECONDS, THE INTRIGUES NEW HINTS ABOUT JOE >>> ALL RIGHT WE'RE BACK WITH NEW CLUES ABOUT WHO IS IN THE MIX AS JOE BIDEN'S POTENTIAL RUNNING MATE IT IS A CRUCIAL DECISION COMING WITHIN DAYS

    WE GET DETAILS FROM N NBC'S ANDREA MITCHELL >> Reporter: JOE BIDEN SAYING HE'S DAYS AWAY FROM CHOOSING HIS RUNNING MATE >> I'M GOING TO HAVE A CHOICE IN THE FIRST WEEK IN AUGUST >> Reporter: UNAWARE THAT PHOTOS SHOWED HE WAS PREPARED TO DEFEND SENATOR KAMALA HARRIS IF ASKED THE NOTE READING, DO NOT HOLD GRUDGES, DESPITE HER ATTACK ON HIS RECORD ON RACE IN THEIR FIRST DEBATE

    >> DO YOU AGREE TODAY THAT YOU WERE WRONG TO OPPOSE BUSSING IN AMERICA THEN? >> NO >> DO YOU AGREE? >> I DID NOT OPPOSE BUSSING IN AMERICA >> Reporter: SOME BIDEN ADVISERS ARGUE HARRIS STILL CANNOT BE TRUSTED, BUT HE SPOKE GLOWING OF HER WHEN SHE DROPPED OUT >> SHE COULD BE PRESIDENT SOME DAY HERSELF SHE COULD BE VICE PRESIDENT

    I'M NOT GOOD AT KEEPING HARSH FEELINGS >> Reporter: BIDEN HAS SAID THERE ARE FOUR BLACK WOMEN ON HIS LIST, AMONG THEM KAREN BASS >> SIR, ANYTHING YOU WANT TO ASK THE CONGRESSWOMAN WHILE SHE'S HERE? >> YES I ASKED HER TO BE VICE PRESIDENT SHE SAID NO

    >> Reporter: JOKING ASIDE, BASS IS THOUGHT TO BE HIGH ON THE LIST FORMER NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER SUSAN RICE WORKED CLOSELY WITH BIDEN IN THE OBAMA WHITE HOUSE, BUT HAS NEVER RUN FOR OFFICE CONGRESSWOMAN VAL DEMMINGS ALSO A CONTENDER A FORMER ORLANDO POLICE CHIEF, ALONG WITH SEVERAL OTHERS LIFE CHOICES SOMETIMES CAN HURT AND HELP, THINK SARA PAHLIN

    THIS TIME WITH THE OLDEST CANDIDATE TO TAKE OFFICE, IF HE'S ELECTED, VOTERS COULD DECIDE IT'S CRITICAL LESTER? >> ANDREA MITCHELL TONIGHT IN WASHINGTON THANKS >>> THE FALL-OUT FROM COVID WILL BE THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE THIS ELECTION SEASON BUT THERE IS ALSO A DIRE WARNING ABOUT THE PANDEMIC'S DEVASTATING IMPACT ON CHILDREN WORLDWIDE

    WITH MORE ON THAT, HERE'S RICHARD ENGEL >> Reporter: WHILE THE GLOBAL COVID DEATH TOLL TONIGHT TOPPED 650,000, WHAT'S COMING COULD BE FAR WORSE THE WORLD FOOD PROGRAM AND THREE OTHER UN AGENCIES PREDICT MASS STARVATION BECAUSE OF COVID'S DISASTROUS ECONOMIC IMPACT THE UN AGENCY SAYING THE 140 MILLION PEOPLE AROUND THE WORLD ON THE BRINK OF STARVATION NOW COULD RISE TO A STAGGERING 270 MILLION THIS YEAR >> IF WE DON'T GET A SOCIAL SAFETY NET PROGRAM OUT THERE IMMEDIATELY AND PROVIDE ANY FOOD, YOU WILL SEE MASS STARVATION, FAMINES OF BIBLICAL PROPORTION

    >> Reporter: DAVID BEASLEY, THE DIRECTOR OF THE WORLD FOOD PROGRAM, SAYS CHILDREN ARE THE HARDEST HIT WITH 10,000 MORE DYING EVERY MONTH IN MANY COUNTRIES, NO SCHOOL MEANS NO GOOD, LEAVING KIDS WITH WEAKENED IMMUNE SYSTEMS >> WHICH MEANS THEY COULD BE VULNERABLE, NOT JUST TO COVID, MALARIA, CHOLERA >> Reporter: AND THE CRISIS WILL SPREAD BEYOND THE DEVELOPING WORLD, THE UN WARNS, AS HUNGRY PEOPLE MOVE TO SURVIVE >> DO YOU THINK COVID WILL LEAD TO A NEW WAVE OF MASS MIGRATION COMING FOR THE UNITED STATES? >> WELL, THERE IS NO QUESTION IN MY MIND YOU WILL SEE MIGRATION HEADING TOWARD THE U

    S BORDER >> Reporter: THE WORLD FOOD PROGRAM IS URGENTLY CALLING FOR >> WHAT AN IMPORTANT MESSAGE FROM HIM TONIGHT >>> UP NEXT, LIFE ON MARS? >>> FINALLY, LET'S TAKE A BREAK FROM WHAT'S GOING ON HERE ON EARTH TOM COSTELLO ON THE NEW MISSION TO MARS

    >> Reporter: HEADED FOR MARS TOMORROW, A NEW ROVER, AND BOY IS IT LOADED WITH CAMERAS AND PROBES AND DRILLS TO COLLECT SOIL AND ROCK SAMPLES FOR A FUTURE TRIP TO EARTH EVEN A MICROPHONE SO WE CAN ALL HEAR WHAT MARS SOUNDS LIKE BUT IT IS THE TINY HELICOPTER OR DRONE THAT IS GETTING THE MOST ATTENTION IT WILL FLY JUST 15 FEET OFF THE GROUND SURVEYING THE LANDSCAPE >> WE'RE HOPING TO BE LIKE THE WRIGHT BROTHERS MOMENT

    BUT IN ANOTHER CLIMATE, ON MARS, YES, WE'RE EXTRAORDINARILY EXCITED >> Reporter: THE MARS 2020 MISSION WHERE SCIENTISTS HOPE TO FIND LIFE THAT MICROBE LIFE DID EXIST NASA CHIEF >> I'M NOT SAYING IT WAS INHABITED I DON'T KNOW BUT I CAN TELL YOU THIS

    IT LOOKED A LOT LIKE EARTH ABOUT THREE BILLION YEARS AGO >> Reporter: THIS MISSION LAYING THE GROUND WORK FOR EVENTUAL HUMAN TRIPS TO MARS >> GETTING TO MARS IS VERY DIFFICULT, OBVIOUSLY, WITH HUMANS SURVIVING ON MARS IS VERY DIFFICULT GETTING BACK FROM MARS IS VERY DIFFICULT

    >> Reporter: WE OFTEN ASSIGN HUMAN QUALITIES TO OUR SPACE PROBES, ENVIOUS OF THE PLACES THEY GO TOMORROW PERSEVERANCE IS HEADED TO MARS LEAVING US TO WAIT AND WONDER TOM COSTELLO, NBC NEWS WASHINGTON >> THAT'S "NIGHTLY NEWS" I'M LESTER HOLT

    PLEASE TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF AND EACH OTHER GOOD NIGHT

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