tv The Nineties CNN August 26, 2017 12:00am-1:00am PDT
this is cnn breaking news. 3:00 on the u.s. east coast. welcome back to our viewers here in the u.s. and around the world. i'm george howell at cnn headquarters in atlanta as we continue following several breaking news stories this hour on cnn. first, a major category 3 hurricane bearing down right now on the u.s. state of texas. it's been downgraded from a category 4 storm, but don't let that fool you. this is still a quite intense storm. officials warn that harvey could be the worst storm to hit the country since hurricane katrina back in 2005. the u.s. president has already
declared it a major disaster. now to tell you about another storm of a political nature. as harvey beared downed on texas the u.s. president pardoned a controversial sheriff. joe arpaio was convicted of criminal contempt of court. and then there was another story to tell you about. another trump official out of a job, sebastian gorka, has left the position as the president's counter terrorism advisor. a lot to tell you about again this day. let's start, though with the monster storm at hand that's hitting the state of texas this hour. our correspondents on the ground following this story. martin savidge and our meteorologist. martin, let's start with you. a couple of hours ago we remember seeing you, the wind
just bearing down on you. this is still a very important storm, a very strong storm. explain the situation as it stands now in corpus. >> you've gone from what was a category 4 to a category 3 reminding viewers it was katrina that was a category 3. and we all know about the devastation and death that storm created. so even though this has been downgraded somewhat, a category 3 is considered a major hurricane and still capable of creating expensive damage and also killing people. the other thing i should point out even though it looks like the situation has improved here in corpus christi, i'm not bent over as far as peag thrown over by the wind, if i was on the opposite side of building, you would see me being thrown over. on the opposite side of this building which now is acting as a huge sail or wind block, it is still a massive wind tunnel.
so all of the effects of that wind and rain are being felton the backside of this building. and still every now and then we'll hear a crash and something falls out of the night sky onto the ground. so you know it's extremely dangerous to be out on the streets here in corpus christi. we also know in areas like rockport about 30 miles north of here where they saw hurricane harvey come to shore, thr reports now of expensive damage. they've gone out and done some initial surveys, so they know it's bad. you can imagine there are many people that need help but emergency responders just cannot get out in the darkness and in the hurricane force winds. and then we have the rain that is still expected to come. not just a couple of inches. a couple of feet. and it's possible that hurricane force winds will be impacting this area this same time tomorrow.
so this just shows you what an extraordinarily large and powerful storm this is, and why they say it still could be catastrophic for texas. now, we have not heard of any deaths reported so far. and here in corpus christi, no reports of major damage. power outages yes, but they've also been able to get the lights back in some areas. the truth, is gorge until morning or daylight we won't know how bad it is. it we do know it won't be over anytime soon. >> martin, thank you for the reporting. let's no switchover to derek van dam. derek live in san antonio, texas where many people have decided to evacuate, to move into safer ground inland. what has gnat situation been like with people who got to safer ground?
>> well, george this is the largest city and closest city to the evacuation zone across the southeast coast of texas. and you heard martin talk about how we're going to be measuring the rainfall over the next five, seven days. slow moving storm. we're talking about inches if not feet. and i'm trying to put this into perspective for our international audience as well. we have done the calculations and we're expecting an area of 20 inches plus, that's 500 millimeters -- if we were to spread that out, the area expecting that amount of rain is the size of belgium. we're expecting that area of coverage of rainfall over the size of luxembourg. so you can imagine just how much rainfall, 20 trillion gallons of water will fall in the south eastern portions of texas and louisiana in the next couple of days depending on the slow
meanderring of what is now category 3 hurricane harvey. as i said, this is the closest major city away from the evacuation zone. but there are a couple key messages here and i want to potentially relay from people watching from san antonio and evacuated to this city. just because you're 150 kilometers off the coast, doesn't mean we're safe from the bankrupt of this storm. granted the winds haven't picked up all that much. 120 miles per hour, that's the highest gust we've seen, but the wind is still slowly moving inland. we could still get the avenue rain, leaving the flash flooding and also the potential for strong tropical force winds, that's what we have in store for us and that's what we're going to continue to monster as the nights and days wear on. >> that's the thing.
waiting and seeing exactly how intense the rains will be in the flooding situation, we'll just have to wait and see. we appreciate the reporting. now let's switchover to our colleague, karen mcguinness, who's tracking this storm. it appears the storm is moving. >> there is no need to worry. a lot of this moisture is going to make its way towards san antonio. i want to show you here is interstate 35. it runs right around luradio to san antonio to austin. essentially it is this basin that we're looking at for the next five days, maybe a week for this just to fill up with rainfall. computer models are all over the place as to how much individual places are going to get. but they've been fairly
consistent that it is going to be feet of rainfall, where the average volume in a year that say like corpus christi sees in a year is about 31 inches of rain. that might see that over the next several days. certainly we're getting some storm reports out of the last 24 hours of 5, 6, 7 inches of rain. that just has made landfall, made a double land fall, moved across rockport across the bay. and they were saying over 200,000 people without power there. and one of the cities there, just north to corpus christi, they are saying they're getting calls from people who want help. they don't have the ability to go out and help those people. they were told yesterday to evacuate. this is very serious. we're talking about, george, in
some cases there could be possibly 50 inches of rainfall before it's all said and done. >> that is one of the biggest dangerous, karen. we spoke one of the gentleman earlier and he explained one of the reason he decided to stay. that is one of the dangers because now those people have to wait for those emergency officials when it's safe to get back out there. just a short time ago i spoke with the fire chief of corpus christi, texas. his name is robert rocha and he expressed his concerns about this particular storm. listen. >> there were people that decided to depot ahead and stay, and we asked them to shelter in place, not to leave their home. we did not want anybody driving during this time period because we experienced high-water in a couple of locations. and as you know half of the deaths that occur when vehicles are getting stuck in high-water. we really wanted to make sure that people were safe. and we encourage people to stay
at home. >> so, robert, there different phases of these storms. obviously there is preparation of the storm coming in, and then there is riding the storm out and then there is the aftermath. we know this storm is moving slowly. it's going to stick around that part of the state for some time, for several days now. what is the concern there in corpus christi specifically given what this storm is doing right now? >> well, the storm stall is what really effects us, but it's just going to dump an enormous amount of rain in one location at one time. so with that you're going to have high-water level. quite frankly, there's nowhere for the water to go. so that's the main concern responders have. we do have responder elements in place. we have corpus christi firefighters ready to conduct
rescue operations. we also have task force one which specializes in rescue. >> i'm curious to ask you, robert, if you would even have sort of an educated guess on how many people decided to leave corpus christi? was it the majority of people who decided to leave, or what are you seeing? >> well, the city of corpus christi does a phased evacuation in which we encouraged those residents who lived in low-lying areas, we encouraged those people to leave. and quite frankly many did. we put them on buses and shipped them off to san antonio to shelters up there. but people also self-evacuated. we think the rez dependents did a good job in getting out. however, many did stay. we just encourage them to stay inside the rez dependents and shelter in place.
>> again, that was corpus christi's fire chief robert roaches speaking with me. and anyone hunkering down, riding this storm out we encourage you to stay with us on updates of this information. another storm to tell you about about the political type also with a controversial sheriff known for racial profiling. another advisor is out of his job at the white house.
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live images this hour from our affiliate ksat on the road in corpus christi, texas. ask you get a sense this category 3 storm still bearing down there in texas. winds up to 130 miles per hour. that's about 200 kilometers mile per hour. and heavy rains are hammering the coast. those are large signs toppled over. there are going to be more like that in coming hours and perhaps days and weeks ahead. officials won't be able to take stock until that happens. but some models have it lasting through the weekend or even
longer. experts say it could add up to be one of the worst storms to hit the united states since hurricane katrina. and the president has already approved a disaster declaration. of course we'll continue to monster the storm with the map that you see right here that shows you exactly where the storm is. but there's another storm to tell you about of the political nature in the trump white house. the president has pardoned controversial sheriff joe arpaio. he was convicted for criminal contempt for refusing to obey a court order to stop racial profiling. also controversial advisor sebastian gorka is out of a job. but it was not a surprise, though. critics say he lacked the
qualifications to do the job. cnn's sarah snider has a look at his legacy and relationship with the trump white house. >> reporter: the case against arpaio and his department's behavior began in 2007. a class action lawsuit accused him of implementing a policy of racial profiling and unlawful traffic stops of latinos. arpaio was sued. known for his tough speak, his department's workplace raids, the tenth city where inmates were house asked the pink underwear he made inmates wear, arpaio argued he was simply enforcing the law. >> i'm not going to be subserveiant to federal government when they have come up with no proof. >> reporter: but arpaio lost his argument in the civil lawsuit. on october 13th the federal
government put an injunction in place. according to prosecutors and a federal judge arpaio and his deputies defied the order. arpaio claimed the order wasn't clear and he didn't mean to violate it. but a federal judge found arpaio showed a flagrant disregard. >> racism in any form is wrong, and joe arpaio again has been the center of racist policies and racist attitudes. and he has been criminally convicted. >> reporter: from the start when he was elected into office he began a crusade. his actions terrified not only the undocumented but anyone who looked like they could be. arpaio's speech gave him a celebrity status in circles and a kinship with the man who would
become the 44th president. >> it's important to report that arpaio is known for the birther movement during the obama administration, alleging he was not born into the united states. this allegation was repeatedly proven false. president trump also found a kindred spirit in his arpaio's ard line against undocumented immigrants. arpaio's expressed his gratitude to the president in a series of tweets saying this, quote, thank you donald trump for seeing my conviction for what it is, a political witch-hunt by hold overs in the obama justice department. it goes onto say, i am humbled and incredibly greattle to president trump. i look forward to putting this chapter behind me and helping my
maga. the u.s. president is also taking action to block further transgender military recruits. mr. trump directed the military to stop moving forward with the plan to recruit anymore transgender individuals into the armed forces. it also bans the department of defense for providing medical treatment for transgender individuals currently serving in the united states military. a lot to talk about here. let's break it all down. michael is the president of the global policy institute at ma maremount universe. all of this happening as we're following this major storm, this storm that is bearing down on the u.s. state of texas. the question here is the timing. what do you make of the timing of the president choosing to pardon mr. arpaio when this big story is happening? >> well, it's a friday night,
and that's pretty standard for politicians who want to get something out that they don't want a lot of coverage of. but this administration does that more than most. the arpaio case is, i think, for the president, another blemishiblemish on his record as far as civil rights and equality is concerned. here's a person as sheriff was denying a court order. here's a person who's supposed to be the law keeper and a lawbreaker. and so this is a really plumb gift to his base. but to those in america who were concerned about the president's response to charlottesville, this only makes matters worse. >> it is important to point out this was the pardon of the president and the president alone. he did not refer to the justice department, which is standard. the question here, how
significant are pardons for presidents when you look at presidents past, those who made those decisions typically at the end of their term, this president making it right at the start? >> that's right. historically presidents wait until the 11th hour. and there have been a few exceptions and controversial pardons. for example, the forward pardon of nixon is considered to be the most egregious. but i think the pardon that george bush issued to -- in the middle of his trial was -- but presidents usually wait until the 11th hour when the damage can be done and they can just leave. and so pardons to come this
early, i think signal something bigger than the arpaio case. and i think he's signaling to those in the russia investigation that a pardon by them might follow. >> so we're talking about the micro politics. let's talk about the macro. what are the imp kags for pardoning this sheriff, accused of racial profiling, refused to obey a court order. what does it mean coming off a rally -- what does it mean for people seeing all this happen? >> you know, if you're a nice person and you're marching with neo-nazis, you either get out of their fast or you don't get involved at all. so the notion that a lot of nice people were caught up in that is absurd. and the president has suggested by many of his comments a great
deal of racial insensitivity to mexicans during the campaign, criminals and rapists to muslims. and so he's starting from a very bad position. and then after charlottesville his comments were grotesque to say the least. and now this only reinforces all of the bad things that some of the president trump's critics say about him. he's playing into the hands of his critics but he's also more importantly, perhaps, playing right into the heart of his base. >> if i said nice people, i do want to correct myself. the president's words were fine people. the kkk, the neo-nazis who were all marching that night with torches. and also this ousting of gorka, how do you see that playing? >> well, mr. gorka was the king of snark.
and he was bombastic, sometimes rude. he was a character. even a parody of sorts. general kelly has got his fingerprints all over this. so he's gotten rid of bannon. he's gotten rid of gorka. is miller next? so what general kelly as chief of staff has demonstrated is he's able to take the lower level people, dominate, control them. he still has to worry about the person at the top. he cannot control the president, and that's been his problem. and president trump is not controllable. >> thank you. >> thank you. the major story we're following this hour, hurricane harvey it is hitting the u.s. state of texas right now. powerful winds and heavy rains there. this is the a monster storm that we'll bring you the latest on. plus the united states says
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texas coastline right now. hurricane harvey, a category 3 storm. it's been downgraded from category 4, but don't let that fool you. you get from that satellite himmage, an idea how big this storm is. you see the eye wall clearly denined. official believe this will be one of the worst storms to hit the united states in decades. you can see, though, they've been doing some damage ripping apart this gas station. flooding is also a big concern as well. some parts of the state could get more than 3 feet. that's almost a full meter of rainwater. and the coast could see some of the largest storm surges as well. the city manager in texas has already said the damage is already expensive. many think harvey could be the most destructive storm to hit the country since hurricane
katrina. many people are in its path. the president of the united states, donald trump has already approved a declaration of disaster before that storm hit land. carl joins us now by phone with his perspective on the storm. carl, we're thankful to have you on the storm. we understand you've decided to stay there to ride this out. and we also understand from officials there there is noticeable damage. what are you seeing? >> thank you. yeah, we decided to stick it out. when the eye of the storm came, we'd been in the house for hours and we just heard what sounded like a fright train outside. we had a couple of windows we thought were going to give. but ultimately when the eye of the storm came, we were able to crack the windows and go outside. and what we saw was expensive damage. front of the house, back of the
house. trees everywhere. we're not able to leave our property. one of the roofs were hit. and very concerned what we're going to see when it's light out in the morning. >> i want to ask you because officials gave the word -- they urged people to leave that area. but we also understand these are very personal decisions for people. talk about the decision for you. was this sort of an in the moment decision to stay there? >> well, we definitely thought about it. my wife and kids are -- we just moved here from minnesota a couple years ago. so this is their first time speer experiencing any kind of tropical storm or hurricane. so we were all pretty nervous. but ult mely we decided my folks
house has a backup generator and is built to withstand a category 3 hurricane. our home is not. so we came to their house. that's where we're at. there's six of us here. we do have lights and air-conditioning because of the backup generator we have. so that definitely played into the decision. also this home is above, you know, far enough above sea level that predicted storm surges would not impact us. and multily last night at 1:00 in the morning we were loaded up in the car ready to leave. but we looked at it. we have dogs, all the kids. and we would have basically leave without any stuff. all we could fit was us and the kids in the car. and so the original plan to come over to my parents house was the
safest one. and it has proven to have worked out. the ultimately risk is emergency responders aren't going to get to you because you can't put them at risk. which i understand. so if you were someone on oxygen or was in a very low-lying area or lived in a mobile home or something that could be cas strophically effected, you might have made a different decision. but for us this was the decision we went with. if we wouldn't have had power, i think that would have changed our minds. >> carl on the phone with us from texas. carl, we're thankful you're okay. and as you point out, it will take some time for officials to get to you. we're haerg from meteorologists this storm is going to stick around for a bit. standby there. and obviously the officials will be on the roads here soon as the storm passes a bit more.
thank you for your time today. let's now switchover to our national correspondent martin savidge in corpus christi, texas. and martin, we've been looking at images from a dash camera taken from earlier driving through the streets there. you do get a sense this storm, it hit hard. there was a great deal of damage on those streets. >> reporter: right. it is probably going to have to wait until daylight until anybody gets a really good sense how much damage has been done in corpus christi here. the good news is as others have stated the lights are still on. and that goes a long way to helping people cope with what they're going through. i should tell you the scene behind me is a bit deceiving because corpus christi is still getting blasted by this storm. category 3. and that's another amazing thing. usually when storms come onto shore, they die down very quickly. this storm has been onshore as
we say for a number of hours. now, it is still a category 3, a major hurricane capable of causing catastrophic damage. it is moving extremely slowly, and now the guiding winds that normally propel a hurricane out of the area have apparentliy fallen apart. and that's why wae may see this storm linger. and not just linger at a storm but linger as a hurricane. and that's what makes this emergency response extremely difficult. they're not going to go out if there's still high winds and debris being blown about by them. and feet of rain in some places. and that could isolate people who now have just realized they've suffered extreme damage, that they're home is pretty much shot and they've got no way to get out of there. it also means rescuers will have
a very hard time getting to them. so daylight is going to be very telling here. and unfortunately it's just the beginning of the story, george. because 200,000 people already in the state without power, and that may just get worse. >> cnn national correspondent live for us in corpus christi, texas. thank you for the reporting. we'll stay live with you. let's cross over to bristol with the american red cross joining us from the phone in texas. i'm sure you've been in touch with your teams on the ground in these places that have been hit so hard. what can you tell us about what you're hearing so far? >> we're staying in communication with red cross teams all across the state. we're expecting pretty bad damage in our coastal communities. we're hearing many of the same damage reports you've been talking about over the last several min. and here in austin where i'm
located our big focus now is making sure we've got the ability to shelter evacuees coming from the coast. this is huge storm, and it's predicted to bring many, many inches if not feet of rain to communities across texas. so while many people might think of a hurricane only attacking the coast, it's going to hit a big chunk of the state of texas. and we're ready to respond to that. >> all right, so bristol, there are different phases of these storms, right? there's the preparation for the storm to hit. then there's the waiting for storm out, those who decide to wait and hunker down, those who decide to evacuate. and then there's a aftermath of the storm, to see the damage leftover. talk to us the about the red cross, what your organization is preparing for in the aftermath of this storm. and keep in mind what the meteorologists are saying, this storm and even its remnants
could stick around for a while. >> that's right. and this storm is unique in the fact that normally when the sun rises you can start to take a look at what the damage has been and start to move into emergency relief mode. but because of the impacts of this storm are going to be so extended, folks are going to be experiencing the heavy rainfall and flooding for days. so we may not know what the future looks like until we get into early next week and what kind of relief is going to be needed. but in the short term our biggest priority is sheltering. at this point we're kind of in mass care mode, making sure people have a roof over their head, a place they can go with hot meals and as many of the kfrts we can possibly provide during what is a very scary time. and then when we know what time of relief is going to be needed in the days and weeks to come, we'll be able to scaleup our operation to meet those needs. >> bristol there in my hometown of austin.
the city not feeling the worse damage of this storm but getting some rain for it. and saying the officials there are prepared to serve those throughout the state as we get a better sense of the damage there. thank you so much for being with us today. still ahead here on newsroom we're following other stories around the world as this hurricane continue tuesday bear down on the u.s. north korea reportedly launches a few more missiles. how far those missiles were able to travel as "cnn newsroom" continues. ♪
welcome back to cnn. continuing coverage we're following the breaking news this hour along the texas gulf coast hurricane harvey has made landfall as a category 4 storm. it is now category 3 but still a very major storm. it's wind up to 120 mields an hour. that's about 200 kilometers per hour. harvey marks the first category 4 hurricane to make landfall in the united states since charlie back in 2004. of course we continue to monitor the events there but now a major story we're following around the world. north korea. the u.s. says pyongyang conducted three more missile
tests just hours ago. it traveled a little more than 150 miles but exploded right after the launch. andrew, it's good to have you with us. the what more can you tell us about the particulars of this launch. >> reporter: well, george, these were short range missiles. about 250 kilometers. they traveled what was expected from these type of missiles am there was a little confusion to begin with about the success about the launch of these missiles. -- initially saying two of those missiles failed in flight and the third one actually blew up fairly quickly after it launched. they then revised that to say these missiles had flown about 250 kilometers northeast of korea. so they fell into the sea sort of east of the korean peninsula.
so they are short range. the timing is interesting because this comes just a few days after the u.s. secretary of state rex tillerson was basically praising north korea for not taking any provicative actions since the united nations had put new and tougher sanctions on north korea. rex tillerson saying he was pleased to see the restraint being shown by north korea. well, that's gone out of the window today. we have the launch of these three new missiles falling harmlessly. the prime minister not even responding to that. their government spokesperson saying the missiles or rockets did want land in anyplace near japan and in fact didn't threaten japan, george. >> what has been the response in the united states given what happened? >> reporter: again, saying the
same thing, they pose no threat to the u.s. obviously, short term or short range missiles don't pose the same sort of the threat as the icbms. and this is the red hot point of contention for the united states. and we saw two launches as what are considered by experts as intercontinental ballistic missiles. the seconds in july -- in fact we had the north korean leader kim jung-un saying they could or would tarkt guam now. certainly the u.s. now is taking this very seriously, that there is a capacity from north korea to hit not only the islands of u.s. protectorates but also mainland u.s. but these were not those types of missiles. and reaction from the u.s. has been fairly low-key. >> thanks for details. andrew stevens for us live in
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welcome back. a powerful storm has made landfall in the u.s. state of texas. hurricane harvey is hitting the coast with wind speeds of 125 miles per hour. that's about 200 kilometers per hour. and what you see there, these live images from cnn affiliate ksat out of san antonio. we understand there is damage of rockport, expensive damage. officials say this slow moving strong storm could drop as much as 40 inches of rain in some parts. u.s. president donald trump issuing a disaster declaration ahead of it storm. and saying the combination of wind, water could leave parts of texas unhabitable for weeks or months. last hour i spoke with the rockport, texas fire chief.
and steve says there has been damage. listen. >> being a firefighter of course right now we're still bunkered down in our station. we still have hurricane force winds outside. but we do know we have significant damage throughout the area. we are inundated with calls of people needing help, but we're waiting on the weather to allow us to do it. >> looking here at the image of the storm. and it seems that you're just to the south of the eye of this storm. but you're certainly within those bands, those strong bands of rain. you mentioned there were people who decided to stay and stick around in the storm. do you have any indication how people are managing the situation at hand right now, those who decided to stay? >> well, that i really don't know loss like i say we've not
been able to get out and start doing any kind of search or rescue or, you know, seeing what we got and how many homes we got that, you know, need our help. the eye wall actually came over rockport. and we had some severe winds on the homecoming of the eye wall. >> steve, obviously, you have to wait just a moment. you have to wait some time when it's safe. we're looking at this image of this vehicle driving the streets right now in corpus christi, texas. and again, that is just to the south of you in rockport. look, the storm has already come through there. and you get a sense of the things knocked over, blown over on the streets there. your emergency crews when they go through, how long do you think it'll take for them to safely go through and get a
sense of what happened there? >> right now we're anticipating -- we're hoping within the next six to eight hours we can get out and start our search and rescue. we do have multiple calls that, you know, people have requested help. but right now we're just in no -- you know, we can't get out and do it. >> that was the fire chief of rockport, texas there. our breaking news coverage continues of hurricane harvey with my colleagues. stay with us. hi, i'm mike ditka. and i'm johnny bench. and we've spent our whole lives
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>> announcer: this is cnn breaking news. thanks for joining us, everyone. welcome to the "cnn newsroom" from atlanta. i'm cyril vanier. >> and i'm natalie allen. a major storm, hurricane harvey bearing down on the texas gulf coast. >> it made land fall as a category 4 storm, now downgraded to 3. officials warn it could be the worst storm to hit the area since hurricane katrina. >> we all remember that. president trump has