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Another Atmospheric River Threatens Flood-Ravaged California; Biden Hosts U.K., Australian Leaders Amid China Tensions; Texas Man Sues Three Women For Allegedly Helping His Ex-Wife Get Abortion Pills; Alabama, Houston, Kansas, Purdue Earn Men's No. 1 Seeds. Aired 3:30-4p ET

Aired March 13, 2023 - 15:30   ET



JOHN BERMAN, CNN HOST: Later today storm battered central California will get hit with a new atmospheric river event. That means a new round of rain and possibly even a new round of flooding.

BIANNA GOLODRYGA, CNN HOST: Yes, a levee protecting the town of Pajaro completely collapsed over the weekend sending gushes of uncontrollable water into neighborhood. Scores of residents were trapped and then had to be rescued. At least two people have died and hundreds were forced to evacuate.

Fortunately, floodwaters drastically receded over night and this rainbow rose above the region today once the sun broke through the clouds. Monterey County officials tell CNN that they are looking into expanding evacuation orders in and around the Pajaro river.


LUIS ALEJO, CHAIR, MONTEREY COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS: Since the first evacuation there's been additional residents who have been evacuated from the community. So as time goes on more residents who have decided to stay are making the choice to leave especially in light of the next storm coming through.

So those efforts are ongoing, and we certainly encourage all residents to evacuate that community for their own safety. Especially when we expect more storm waters to come through that community in an area that's already heavily saturated with water.


GOLODRYGA: They need a lot more than just a pretty rainbow I can tell you that. California could see inches of rain, more inches of rain today alone. More than 18 million people across the state are now under flood watches. CNN meteorologist Derek Van Dam is monitoring this.

Plus, a major nor'easter headed to new England. So, Derek, when will all the extreme weather be hitting both coasts especially here on the East Coast. John is desperate to know. DEREK VAN DAM, CNN METEOROLOGIST: You know, I don't like to be the

bearer of bad news. I know you haven't had much snow this year in New York City. That's probably not been a change much with this storm but you've got to move inland and that's going to be a completely different story.

To answer your question, Bianna, we are really ramping up the storm systems on both sides of the country, the West Coast and the East Coast. And that's going to last right through Tuesday. But let's start out West, and this is what people want to see. In California right now this is the Oroville Spillway being released.

That water for the first time since 2019 -- just incredible. Every drop of water you see behind me is signifying relief from that long- standing drought they've contended with across the state. In fact, they are 200 feet above the historic record low that was set in 2021.

And there's another atmospheric lining up across the state. We'll measure the snowfall in feet across the Sierra Nevada Mountain ranges and several inches of rain for the north coast today. And then you see that moderate risk of flash flooding travels southward including Los Angeles into Monterey County and just outside of the San Francisco Bay region as well.

Here's a look at that AR event that's going to oscillate from north to south, picking up in intensity overnight and lasting right through the day on Tuesday. So, travel beware across the West Coast into California in particular.


To the East Coast now, the developing nor'easter. And I want you to see that extreme impacts are probable just outside of Boston -- we're talking about the Worcester region up towards the Catskills and Berkshires. And we're looking just outside New York to see the greatest impact from this particular system as it winds up, fuels some of that warm water from the Gulf stream, and that is going to be bring rain to the coast but snow inland and it will be heavy and wet and the winds a pickup. So, that means a certainty for power outages across northern New England -- Bianna, John.

BERMAN: All right, Derek Van Dam, thank you. You get the sense it's too late. When it comes down here like, maybe like a couple months ago, now it's just too late let's move on.

GOLODRYGA: Yes, everybody's thinking about spring, so it's too late. I agree.

Well just moments ago President Biden arrived to San Diego as part of a three-day trip to California and Nevada. Today he well hold key meetings with the leaders of Australia and the U.K. as tensions with China continues to escalate.

BERMAN: The president is expected to discuss a partnership to provide Australia with nuclear powered submarines. It's part of a 2021 White House plan to increase security in the Pacific region. CNN's Jeremy Diamond in San Diego for us. Jeremy, give us a sense of what we're expecting here.

JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, listen, John, 18 months ago the U.S. launched its new partnership with Australia and United Kingdom which was intended to deliver these nuclear-powered submarines to Australia. Now we're getting an update, a significant update on the progress of that, and accelerated time line for getting those nuclear powered submarines.

At least three nuclear powered submarines, very much like one of the submarines that's behind me -- where the president is going to be speaking -- delivered to Australia early next decade.

And in the meantime what you will see is increased rotations of U.S. and British submarines to Australia before ultimately what's set to happen in the 2040s, which is the development of a new submarine between the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom that is expected to be able to sail in that decade.

All of this, of course, intended to counter China's growing military dominance and presence in the Indo Pacific. The U.S. has really watched China very cautiously on this front and increased the U.S. military footprint as well in other countries including the Philippines, for example.

And when you listen -- when you talk to U.S. officials what's clear that this is multipronged strategy. There are these military moves that the U.S. is making. At the same time American officials are trying to normalize diplomatic relations with China. Trying to establish crucially those military to military communications which U.S. officials say are sorely lacking and heighten the risk of a miscalculation.

I spoke to a senior administration official who told me that so far China has not been willing to setup those kinds of dialogues that the U.S. officials say are necessary.

This is just the first stop of three stops that President Biden is making here out West. He's holding several fundraisers tomorrow. We expect him to address gun violence in Monterey Park -- which was the site of that January mass shooting. And then on Wednesday the president in Las Vegas set to address his plans to lower prescription drug prices.

GOLODRYGA: All right, Jeremy, it takes a certain kind of talent to power through that military band as if it wasn't even playing behind you. Well-done. Thank you so much, Jeremy.

BERMAN: It's The Jeremy Diamond March. They were playing his actual march, the Jeremy Diamond march.

GOLODRYGA: Thanks, Jeremy.

Well, a show of defiance from North Korea that's now got the attention of the United States and South Korean intelligence officials. The North claims it fired two test cruise missiles from a submarines in the waters off its east coast over the weekend. BERMAN: North Korean state media says the missiles flew for more than

an hour and traveled some 900 miles before precisely -- and that's a quote from them here -- precisely they say hitting their target. This happened hours before the U.S. and South Korea kicked off their largest joint military exercises in six years. Pyongyang has long raged against these drills.

GOLODRYGA: A Texas man has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against friends of his ex-wife for allegedly helping her get abortion pills. We'll tell you more about this story up next.



BERMAN: A Texas man has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against three women. He claims they illegally helped his ex-wife obtain abortion pills to terminate her pregnancy, which could violate a new Texas law that allows private citizens to sue people who provide or assist with abortions.

GOLODRYGA: This is the first case of its kind since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. CNN's Whitney Wild joins us now with more. So, Whitney, the ex-wife is not being sued but it's these three friends, these three women are. What penalties could they be facing?

WHITNEY WILD, CNN LAW ENFORCEMENT CORRESPONDENT: Well, they could face a minimum of $10,000 in damages. This man is seeking a million dollars in damages, and in addition to the three women that he is suing, he also says that he intends to go after the manufacturer of the abortion pills. So basically, what he's done is said everybody along the time line who was involved in this abortion is civilly liable.

The way the protection law is setup, as you point out, this does not include the mother. She's carved out. Again, per that Texas law. This is Senate Bill 8 that went into effect in 2021.

Here are the details of the lawsuit. Basically, what this man is alleging is that in July of 2022 these three friends of his then-wife helped her, walked her through the process of for getting abortion pills and then helped her actually get the abortion pills which resulted he says in the death of his unborn child. Here is a direct quote from this lawsuit.


Under the law of Texas a person who assists a pregnant woman in obtaining a self-managed abortion has committed the crime of murder and can be sued for wrongful death.

This lawsuit is significant because as we look toward the future of this post-Roe v. Wade era and the way different states are building their laws around this ruling from the Supreme Court earlier in 2022, what this really does is seek to solidify the web of liability. Who along the time line? who in the process is liable for an abortion? And what's notable here is that the Texas Senate bill is pretty broad.

It includes anybody who knowingly aids and abets in an abortion, helps induce an abortion, or intends to engage in a conduct outlined in Senate Bill 8, certainly a case to watch. There's a status hearing in June. Back to you.

BERMAN: All right, Whitney Wild, thank you very much. Please keep us posted.

All right, shifting gears here. It is a special time of year, and if you need some help with your March Madness bracket, you are not alone. We're going to get into a cheat sheet next.



BERMAN: March Madness is here. It is upon us. That means it is time to fill out -- it's the most wonderful time of the year. They have songs and jingles about this. It's a wonderful time of the year. We now know that Alabama, Houston, Kansas and Purdue are the top-seeded teams for the men's NCAA tournament.

GOLODRYGA: And for the women, reigning national champions South Carolina who went a 32-0 this season were named to the top overall seed in the women's tournaments. For more on this, CNN's Andy Scholes is here to give us the cheat sheet -- John doesn't need one. I might need one -- for this year's bracket. Andy, tell us what do we need to know?

ANDY SCHOLES, CNN SPORTS ANCHOR: Well, we're going to go for a scouting report for all 68 teams. So, get your pencils ready now. We don't have time for any doubts. I'll try to give you some useful information. You know, it's always fun to try and pick an upset in the first or second round. If I met Cinderella and is going to win a bunch of games that you can brag about.

But if you really want to win your bracket competition and brag to your co-workers and your friends, you need to be concentrating on the final game, right. The teams to make the final. You've really you got to pick the winner. Because more often than not, the team -- or the person that picks the team that wins the title is going to end up having a chance to win their bracket.

And there's a stat that you should follow when filling out your bracket. It's called KenPom. It measures the team's offensive and defensive efficiency in every single champion since 2002 has been in the top 40 in offense and top 22 in defense.

And these teams right here, they already qualify. All seven of those teams, a solid pick to win your bracket. These four over here, by the end of the tournament if they play well, they could qualify. So, those four teams also should be in range or in your thoughts when you're filling out your bracket.

Now two teams that were not on that KenPom, they have a chance to win the tournament this year, according to KenPom Gonzaga and Arizona. Gonzaga in the 70s in defense, Arizona in the 40s.

And check this out. Look at this map. Look at this map. Since 1997 every single champion has been on the east side of that red line right there. So, if Gonzaga, UCLA, Arizona Tech are on the wrong side of that line. It's been a long time since a West Coast team has won the NCAA tournament.

Who should you pick then? Well, if you want to be the safest since 1979, a one-seed has won 26 times. So that's the most probable thing to happen now. Kansas won last year. Since 1974, these are the only two teams that have been able to repeat as champions. Winning the NCAA tournament two years in a row is a very hard thing to do.

Where is the tournament this year? It's in Houston. Who is the betting favorite to win it all right now? It's the Houston Cougars. You got to go back to 1988 when Kansas won in Kansas City, for a team to win near their campus. So, what do you do with all this information? I don't know guys.

I went to the University of Houston. I'm a Houston Cougar. John, I know Harvard is not in it, go with the Harvard of the south, the Houston Cougars this year to win the national championship. How about that?

GOLODRYGA: You know that's where I grew up, so I me, I'm not --

SCHOLES: You're a Houston Rockets fan, I know, Bianna.

GOLODRYGA: I know, exactly. You know, you've got to always have your heartbroken, but you still got to love the team. I told you that my 10-year-old sports aficionado filled out my bracket.

BERMAN: Between him and Andy you're in good hands. Andy Scholes, excellent magic wall use there. You're a real pro. Thanks, Andy.

SCHOLES: Appreciate it.

BERMAN: And be sure to tune in tomorrow night for CNN primetime "INSIDE THE MADNESS." The new NCAA President Charlie Baker joined Chris Wallace. Can the former Massachusetts governor transform basketball? There are no good college basketball teams in Massachusetts yet. He is now running the NCAA.

GOLODRYGA: Harvard's next.

BERMAN: That's tomorrow night at 9:00 Eastern time.

GOLODRYGA: Well, it's the final few minutes of the trading day. And taking a look. Regional bank stocks have taken a beating after the SVB collapse. The broader market seems to be holding up. Just down some 45 points right now just a few minutes away before the closing bell.


(COMMERCIAL BREAK) GOLODRYGA: At Hollywood's biggest night it was all about "Everything Everywhere All at Once." The film took home seven Oscars. And its star, Michelle Yeoh, makes history as the first Asian woman to win the best actress award.

BERMAN: Ke Huy Quan also took home best supporting actor for his role in the movie, leading to this lovely moment.


KE HUY QUAN, BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR OSCAR-WINNER: My mom is 84 years old, and she's at home watching. Mom, I just won an Oscar! Dreams are something you have to believe in. I almost gave up on mine. To all of you out there, please keep your dreams alive.


BERMAN: What a lovely message. CNN also took home its first Oscar with "Navalny" winning best documentary feature.

GOLODRYGA: Congratulations to our team here.

Well, "THE LEAD" with Jake Tapper starts right now.

JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: Who is paying to rescue Silicon Valley bank depositors? "THE LEAD" starts right now.

America's banking system remains safe, that reassurance coming from President Biden after the biggest U.S. bank failure since 2008. And now other banks are sounding the alarm as their stocks take a tumble.

Plus, extreme weather closed to coast. A major storm bearing down on the northeast as even more rain keeps California under water.