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Manafort Plea Deal Includes Cooperation on All Matters; Hurricane Florence Hammering Carolina Coasts; There Are Now Fatalities from The Hurricane; Woman with Seven Rescue Dogs Gets Rescued Through the Kindness of Strangers. Aired 3:30-4p ET

Aired September 14, 2018 - 15:30   ET


[15:30:00] BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN HOST: Gloria, back over to you in Washington and this Trump White House, the statement from Sarah Sanders essentially saying this has nothing to do with us, nothing to see here.

GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST: Right. This is what they've always been saying. When he was indicted, this is what they were saying. Today Rudy Giuliani said it. I have spoken to some people on the Trump legal side as has my colleague, Evan Perez, they're all saying this is totally about Paul Manafort, has nothing to do with us. However, however I think we're being spun. I think that when Bob Mueller gets in there without lawyers and I would also say that the cooperation agreement maintains that the client has to testify fully, completely and truthfully before any and all grand juries in the District of Columbia and elsewhere. It is so broad. Can't have his lawyers. He has no -- can't plead the fifth here. He has to tell the truth. Don't you think they're going to ask him about the Trump Tower meeting?

BALDWIN: Of course, he was in it. Roger Stone, too.

BORGER: Don't you think they're going to ask him why did you join the Trump campaign? We know Roger Stone was one of the people that actually recommended him as a participant in the Trump campaign. Why did you come on as a dollar a year guy when you're completely broke and join the Trump campaign. I think they're going to go back to square one with him, not only about people he served with, the other people that were in that meeting in Trump Tower, Don Jr., Jared Kushner, et cetera, but also about what was going on in the Trump campaign before the election. And that's of course the conspiracy or collusion part of the investigation. And I think he is going to be key to them because they know that he knows that because of this agreement he signed, literally his life is on the line.

BALDWIN: He is a big fish, he will be cooperating and talking. Thank you so much, Gloria, and Barrett.

Coming back, we will go back to special coverage of Hurricane Florence, Don Lemon is in South Carolina where the storm is pounding the coastline. We're seeing rescues and sadly the storm has already turned deadly, three storm related deaths so far. You're watching CNN's special live coverage.


DON LEMON, CNN HOST: Back now live in Myrtle Beach. I am Don Lemon. This is the storm drain from the town, runs off to the beach. This was a trickle when we got here. Now it is breaking off, opening up. We saw a chunk of it break off before. That gives you an idea, the reason I'm doing this, gives you an idea how much water is hitting this area. Big concern, flooding, flooding, flooding as we have been seeing. 40 feet of rain in New Bern. Then the storm surge as well. Active rescues happening. Check out the beach at Myrtle Beach. Not a soul on the beach, except for maybe some media and emergency workers or police patrols coming in to make sure people stay off the beach and out of the water. This is too dangerous now to mess around with, not to mention rip currents. The entire situation when it comes to this particular hurricane. It still as last forecasted, category one hurricane, and it is sitting there, barely moving. It will dump a whole lot of water. Up the beach, Nick Watt my colleague in North Myrtle Beach where he is seeing damage going on with the hurricane. Nick, what have you got for us.

NICK WATT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The surf has gotten wilder and heavier. We're still seeing gusts of wind. That wind is what is keeping first responders in the station. They're not going to answer any calls unless it is life-threatening. I got a text from the director of public safety, he said we're lucky right now. Let's hope that holds. If I was a betting man, not sure I would put money on that luck holding through the night. The storm moving 6 miles per hour down southwest, behind us. We will be in between the eye of the storm and the ocean with all of the rain pouring through the night. So far in North Myrtle Beach, a few trees are down, power lines are down. Beyond that, not too bad. The water is beginning to puddle and pool. I just tested a bit of earth there, and the ground is just saturated. All of this rain that's now falling is sitting on the top, so we can expect to see some flooding later here today. This place is susceptible to flooding. It flooded before, it is expected to flood again as the storm moves behind us through the night into Saturday morning. As I say, right now officials here are saying we are feeling lucky now. Let's hope it holds. Back to you.

[15:40:00] LEMON: Lucky for the moment, you're absolutely right. Let's hope it holds. We still have a long time to go when it comes to Florence. Sadly, though we have gotten confirmation of at least three people that died in the storm. An infant, a mother, and also a woman apparently from cardiac arrest. Sadly, people have died. There are going to be many more people that will be injured because of flooding, because of confirmation of at least three people that died in the storm. An infant, a mother, and also a woman apparently from cardiac arrest. Sadly, people have died. There are going to be many more people that will be injured because of flooding, because of downed trees, because of electrical situations and on and on. The folks helping out with that are people in the Cajun Navy as well as other emergency and rescue workers. Todd Terrell is with the Cajun Navy, he is used to this, they help out all the time, he is in Wilmington. That's where we have the confirmation of the first two people to die in the storm, Todd. What are you seeing, were you able to help out?

TODD TERRELL, CAJUN NAVY: We wasn't able to help out in Wilmington yet, we're here now. I think the eye wall is coming across us as we speak. We have been on the outskirts of the eyewall on the way in. Came in about 30 minutes ago, we barely made it in. Water was just starting to come over the road. In Bolivia, looked like a tornado came across the interstate, the opposite way was blocked off. We're in for rough weather.

LEMON: Todd, where were you coming from, was your destination, I imagine Wilmington, tell us where you came from and the situation on the roads there.

TERRELL: Well, the whole way in it was pretty clear all the way in until we started to get 25, 30 miles from Wilmington. Then the weather was just terrible off and on. We saw the eyewall. We came in from Columbia, had a crew staged there, and another crew staged to the east. Right now, the weather is some of the roughest weather I have seen yet.

LEMON: Todd, you have experience dealing with these situations. Tell us what you do when you first come on scene, how do you assess it. Who calls you for help? You hook up with local emergency people. What happens?

TERRELL: It is a combination of things. We get with local law enforcement and emergency people, tell them we're here. Sometimes they tell us they have it under control, the storm is going on, and sometimes we go in and see an opportunity to help people. You can get people a lot faster if you get to them faster. We get to them sometimes in vehicles faster than a boat. We get there and make a decision about getting in. Sometimes you have a break between rain and storm and we go in and rescue at that moment as well.

LEMON: All right. Thank you very much, Todd Terrell. You do great work. Continue on with that, we'll check back with you. Dana outlaw is the mayor of New Bern. We have seen major flooding in New Bern. We want to get to the mayor to give us an update. Thank you for joining us. We know you're very busy. What's going on in New Bern now?

DANA OUTLAW, MAYOR OF NEW BERN: Well, we're continuing to rescue some residents that did not recently evacuate. We are trying to get that number down to zero. It has been -- we rescued about 200, then rescued another 110. So, we have about 40 more to go. We are waiting on winds to decrease to where we can get personnel in and get power on. We have 15,000 without power. It is a serious situation. Not a time to be out. We felt concerned about the welfare of our city, so we did a 24-hour curfew to give first responders time to assess their situation and road conditions before boats start to get out. We had as much as 100 percent people with power out. So, we are working on it as safely as we can do that.

LEMON: Listen, there's a lot going on. Did you say there were 200 or so rescues or 200 or so people you've gotten out so far that you rescued?

OUTLAW: I don't have the exact figure. There were 200 we rescued, and another 150, and we have gotten 110 of those rescued. We have folks call, not sure if they want to be rescued or not.

[15:15:00] LEMON: What are they calling, is it because of flood water, what do most of them say when asking for assistance.

OUTLAW: They called 911, we then put them on a list, depending on where they're located, and when we can get a team there to get them to a shelter. That's when it happens. I mean, the process is moving really well. We want to get all our residents rescued and get them into a safe shelter.

LEMON: Dana Outlaw, mayor of New Bern where we've seen extensive flooding. We will let you get back to it. You have a lot of rescues to get to. Unbelievable, you listen to the mayor, he says they rescued some 200 people, they have 150 more, of them, they have 110 out. But still have work on their hands. And we're in the middle of the hurricane. Florence is really battering the Carolinas. Our special coverage will continue right after this break.


LEMON: We're back now with our live coverage of hurricane Florence really battering the Carolinas right now. As you can see, we're getting one of those bands of wind coming in to Myrtle Beach. The wind is a problem, but the biggest problem is going to be the storm water, the floodwater. And I'm standing now right next to a -- really here in one of the storm drains that comes from town and it flows right into the Atlantic here. This thing was tiny when we got here, and you can see that it's opening up. It's a good thing that it's here because the water would be backing up in town. We have sadly gotten confirmation of four people who have now died because of this storm. As I said earlier, we would probably get, sadly, more fatalities and definitely more injuries. There are also rescues going on all over the area. We were on with the mayor just moments ago. Newburn is inundated with floodwaters. Also, the emergency folks there inundated with people calling trying to be rescued because they're trapped, because of flooding and because of other issues. Four people, again, have died, a mother and an infant. Also, there's another person who was plugging in a generator who died, and then there is a woman who also died from some sort of cardiac situation. I want to get now to Wrightsville Beach. My colleague, Martin Savage, has been following the hurricane from there and he joins me now with an update. What are you seeing, Martin?

MARTIN SAVAGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: You know that this is roughly where the hurricane came ashore about eight or nine hours ago. The fact that we are still slogging through some high winds -- I can't tell you it's hurricane strength, but very high tropical storm winds. Some eight or nine hours later shows you the power of this storm. It is a very powerful category 1, and unfortunately, as you just reported, it is also turning into a deadly category 1. The storm just won't let go, and here's the thing going on here. Wrightsville beach, as far as we can tell, is doing moderately OK. The problem is we can't get across that bridge. The winds are just too high, it's just too dangerous. Only first responders could attempt to do that.

From what we're hearing inside Wrightsville Beach, and this is a popular tourist destination, is they do have a problem with water. It's coming from the intercoastal behind me here and it's also coming from the Atlantic. On the Atlantic Ocean side, they're also experiencing some wind from one side and then the other. And they also have some structural damage. But they're hunkered down, so really their ability to assess is made very difficult because of that. And talking about the wind load, the way it shifts, because in a hurricane, once the eye passes over, you get hit 180 degrees in a different direction. But because it's so sustained, 12 hours, the wind load on buildings is huge, and it continues to wear on those buildings.

So, it's gone from one way to another, and it's kind of a whip saw. Yes, it's over time, but still, the impact is significant. That's the structural problem. You don't even mention the rain. That's going to be a problem that lingers for days. The water we're getting is the ocean water. Eventually a lot of people will be getting the stuff falling from the sky. We're hearing 19 inches in this area. So, we continue to be battered. I'm sure you're getting hit, and it shows you this is one very big, very powerful and very dangerous storm.

[15:55:00] LEMON: Yes, and Martin, thank you. One that appears to not to want to move and it continues sitting in this area and dump all this rain, which is going to be problematic, really, for a couple days here. Brooke Baldwin, Brooke, you've been out in these situations. Usually when we're here, it comes through, causes a lot of damage, gets out of here and we go to the next one. This is sitting on top of us so we're going to be here for quite a long time. Where I am, I'm told the brunt of it won't happen until maybe 10:00 to midnight.

BALDWIN: Let's talk to the meteorologist about that. Don, thank you so much. Meteorologist George Wright Is with me now to look at the latest forecast. Don's point, George, this is going to be with him for a while. It's sitting there, stewing, not moving. Tell me about rainfall totals at this moment.

GEORGE WRIGHT, CERTIFIED CONSULTING METEOROLOGIST: We've had up to 18 inches in Oriental and Wrightsville, North Carolina. That storm is located about 30 miles northeast of Myrtle Beach. It will continue to drift to the west at 5 miles an hour, and then it will turn a little to the west-southwest as it moves to South Carolina. Then by tomorrow evening, it should be in central South Carolina. We have problems with heavy bands of rain, the yellow indicating the heaviest rain bands, high winds and torrential downpours.

BALDWIN: Torrential downpours not just in the coastal areas, right? So decently inland and the incident with that rainfall, no matter where you are near the coast or the river? It will be spilling over the banks?

WRIGHT: It will be spilling over the banks and eventually the water will run to the coast. The soil is so saturated that it doesn't take much wind to knock these trees over which causes more power outages. We have tropical winds 170 miles from the center of the storm. There had been reports of tornadoes to the north and to the northeast of the storm. There are these spiral bands that come in, they encounter friction with the earth's surface. It produces low-level wind sheer and rotation and it helps spin up these tornadoes. We've had tornado watches and warnings over the eastern half of North Carolina today and that will continue into tonight.

BALDWIN: As though a hurricane isn't enough with all this rain that we have to deal with the potential for tornadoes. What is your biggest concern? What is the biggest misnomer when people are saying, well, it's a category 1, and it's slow moving. What would you say about that?

WRIGHT: Even though it's a category 1, it had been a category 4. It has to rain itself out and it's just sitting over the area and it will continue to rain and rain and rain. As you can see, there are some areas of light blue where you don't see any of the green or yellow. The water is actually coming from the land and then you will see periods where there isn't any rain and then it will start pouring again. Anywhere from 19 to 22 inches can be expected.

BALDWIN: Thinking about those rescue crews over the next couple days. George Wright, thank you so much. Appreciate that.

I want to touch base now with someone who planned to ride out the storm, had a change of plans. We talked just a few days ago to Christine Meinhold. She said she didn't have a way out of Myrtle Beach where they live, and that is where the kindness of strangers stepped up. Christine, my Twitter blew up after you and I chatted two days ago. So many people wanting to help you, you and your heart of gold with all your dogs. Tell me how you got help to get out.

CHRISTINE MEINHOLD, RESIDENT RIDING OUT STORM: Well, it was just amazing. A lady from Palm Springs, California, Kate Zena, and a lady from New York and several -- Elizabeth Padilla from Texas. There was so many -- and Trudy. All these ladies got together and started a message on Facebook. They were determined to get me out of there. They were going to buy a car for me, but the dealer couldn't get out of the area to get to a dealership, so they found a U-Haul. They paid for this and gave me money. Total strangers did this for us.

BALDWIN: Love that. How are the pups?

MEINHOLD: They're doing great. We're here with my cousin, Don Stevens, in Crossville, Tennessee. We're at his condo. Even though it was a good ride for them, they're doing great. We got here about 4:00-something this morning, and they're doing really well. I've had them out several times and they know as long as mom is here, everything is OK.

BALDWIN: Isn't that amazing? Dogs just know. Dogs just know.

MEINHOLD: We just got word from back home that they're without power already. My neighbors are all gone, so I don't know what's going on with my house right now. We'll just wait until further in the week. Kate, this lady with the heart of gold, she told me, don't worry. Whatever is going to happen is going to happen, but we'll be here for you. Just amazing that strangers will step up and do this stuff for you. BALDWIN: Let me brag on you. As a stranger riding out Hurricane

Matthew, and we had talked a couple days ago about how you helped rescue a number of dogs who were stranded by owners who got out of town, and I know you then took in several of those dogs. So, I can only imagine you're already thinking ahead to what you can do in the wake of, you know, hurricane Florence. I'm out of time, but I know we're going to stay in touch with you, Kristen, My best to you and all seven of your dogs there in Tennessee, and thank you so much for calling back in. People have been wondering. Thank you.

I'm Brooke Baldwin. Thank you so much for being with me here on this Friday afternoon. Special coverage continues now --