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News on The 700 Club: September 8, 2017

As seen on “The 700 Club,” Sept. 8: Mexico is hit by biggest quake in century; North Korea may be testing powerful new weapons, and more. Read Transcript

Welcome to the 700 Club.

Hurricane Irma has weakened to a Category 4,

but it's still a very dangerous storm

as it heads straight for Florida.

And experts are warning that could be devastating.

Florida's governor is warning residents

to follow evacuation orders, and people who are staying put

are getting ready for what could be the storm of their lives.

Charlene Aaron brings us the story.

CHARLENE AARON: Hurricane Irma has

moved within striking distance of South Florida, where

residents are boarding up homes, grabbing dwindling supplies

of bottled water, and battling fuel shortages seeking

to get out of harm's way.

I'm very scared, so I'm just trying to get as far

north as possible.

I want to get to higher ground.

CHARLENE AARON: Florida's governor

is stressing the powerful storm could be a historic disaster,

and residents should listen to mandatory evacuations.

Remember Hurricane Andrew is one of the worst storms

in the history of Florida.

This storm is much worse.

Irma is likely to move up along the East Coast of Florida

with a potential threat to Georgia and the Carolinas

after doing serious damage throughout islands

in the Caribbean.

Irma is the strongest hurricane ever recorded

in the Atlantic Ocean.

With 170 mile per hour winds, it devastated

small northern Caribbean islands like St. Martin and Barbuda.

The entire country has been decimated.

That was worst storm in all my life.

And I would not want to see another hurricane like this


We're praying all the time.

How are we going to survive after this?

CHARLENE AARON: In Puerto Rico, the storm

left nearly a million people without power,

and it could be four to six months in some areas

before it's restored.

And here in the US, the National Weather Service

warns that some locations hit by Irma

could be uninhabitable for weeks or months

due to powerful winds, and that structural damage to buildings,

with many washing away, is possible in some coastal areas.

Major preparations are underway.

In addition to Florida, the governor of Georgia

declared a state of emergency for his state's Atlantic coast.

And the governors of South and North Carolina

have declared states of emergency.

There's no gas, there's no water,

the grocery stores are empty.

They have security guards and police at Home Depot.

They're rioting for plywood down there, it's crazy.

CHARLENE AARON: But Florida is the main state

in Irma's path, where huge numbers of people

are evacuating and getting ready for the monster storm.

And CBN's Operation Blessing has been stocking up

for its relief and humanitarian aid as well.

Our team spent the day moving in semi truckloads of water

into a hurricane headquarters located in Ocala, Florida.

At that warehouse, it is packed full

of emergency food, supplies, water, personal hygiene items,

so that once Irma moves out and the roads are safe to go in,

Operation Blessing's semi trucks will

begin to roll out to the hardest hit communities,

providing them life sustaining resources.

CHARLENE AARON: And so, Operation Blessing

is getting ready to be on the scene

when people need them the most.

Charlene Aaron, CBN News.

Does make you wonder what in the world is going on.

The number of disasters that we're seeing--

just this morning, an earthquake off of Mexico, 8.1 to 8.2,

fears of tsunamis.

The wildfires in Montana, that's a story you don't hear

too much, but 500,000 acres.

The wildfires in Oregon, Los Angeles,

then the devastation of Harvey, one

of the most severe storms in the history of the United States.

And then right on top of it, Irma.

And if Irma hits on the track that we're talking about,

this is one monster storm.

You heard the governor talk about Andrew.

From the reports I've heard, it's like 2 and 1/2

Andrews can fit inside of Irma.

That's how big this storm is, how wide it is.

And at category 4 with a storm surge,

you are talking about devastation.

And then if it keeps going up through Georgia,

the current track into Tennessee,

you're talking massive flooding.

This is a disaster on Biblical proportions.

And what as Christians are we to do?

Number one, please pray.

Can this storm dissipate?

Can it even weaken even further?

Let's not be satisfied.

It's weakened to a Cat 4.

Cat 4 is still a very dangerous storm.

And then can we help people in need?

Can we say we're here for you?

We're not just going to pray, we're

going to do things tangibly.

You just heard about how Operation Blessing is

mobilizing in Ocala, Florida.

That's where our main base is to supply

relief supplies for hurricanes.

And if you want to be a part of it, now's the time to do it.

You can call us, 1 800-700-7000.

We have people standing by on the phones

right now to take your call.

And all you have to do is say, I want to give to the Disaster

Relief Fund for Operation Blessing.

So call us right now.

Have a credit card ready.

We also have where you can go

and you can give a designated gift into that Disaster Relief


And that's a designated gift.

It's going to help people in need, whether that's

Hurricane Harvey, whether the teams that

are going into Mexico to help with that earthquake,

or what's being prepared right now in Ocala to help Irma.

Do it now.

Call 1 800-700-7000.

In other news, the Trump administration

has taken a stand in a very widely watched

religious liberties case.

Wendy Griffith has that story from the CBN newsroom.


Thanks, Gordon.

That's right.

The administration is supporting a Colorado baker

who declined to make a cake for a same sex wedding.

The Justice Department has filed a brief

on behalf of Jack Phillips in his upcoming Supreme Court


The department says forcing him to make such a case would

violate his conscious rights.

86 members of Congress have also filed a brief

in support of Phillips.

The baker says his religious beliefs

on marriage prevented him from making the cake.

Every American should be free to choose

which art they will create and which art they won't

create without fear of unjustly being

punished by the government.

A government that tells you what you can't say

is bad enough, but a government that tells you

what you must say, and what you must do, and punishes you

if you don't, is frightening.

That kind of state power should scare all of us,

no matter where we stand on this issue.

Lawyers from Alliance Defending Freedom

are representing Phillips.

They expect oral arguments to be scheduled later this fall.

Well, that wedding cake case you just heard about

shows just how important judges can be.

They can shape laws for generations.

As Paul Strand reports from Washington,

critics say that's why Senate Democrats are blocking many

of President Trump's choices for federal judges,

and why grassroots conservatives are fighting back.

There are more than 140 vacancies

in the federal judiciary right now.

It's not that there aren't nominees--

there's plenty of them.

It's that the Democrats are holding up

almost the entire pack, and it's sheer politics.

Candidate Donald Trump promised to pick constitutionalists

as judges and justices.

For many Americans, it was a key reason to vote for him,

and the president has followed through.

But with Democrats opposing so many of his nominees,

the group Concerned Women for America brought dozens

of ladies to Capitol Hill to lobby their senators to do

whatever it takes to break the logjam and get Trump's picks

onto the bench.

In the Senate Caucus room, Carrie Severino

of the Judicial Crisis Network told these grassroots women

that Democrats are indeed stalling

some of the president's judicial choices.

Even though Trump started with about 100 nominations,

he's almost up 50%, up to 144.

And we have several more of them are coming.

And they forced even people that all the Democrats

voted for, they're forcing to jump

through huge procedural hurdles, which is something that

just didn't used to happen.

PAUL STRAND: Lawyer Gary Marx, who advises the Judicial Crisis

Network, said some Senate Democrats have even

gone after nominees' religion.

Senator Al Franken and Senator Sheldon Whitehouse,

some of their attacks on these nominees, that in essence said

Catholics need not apply, really persecuting

these amazing judges like Amy Comey

Barrett for their Catholic faithfulness.

PAUL STRAND: Severino points out Democrats even held

up a former Obama nominee, David Nye.

They made him go through a whole process.

They forced the Senate to waste 30 hours of debate time on him.

There was no debate to be had.

He had 100 votes.

So that's the kind of thing that's really frustrating.

PAUL STRAND: Marx encouraged the women

by telling them their lobbying and activism

to get all these nominees voted on makes a difference.

It echoes here in the halls of the US Senate,

in rooms like this and in committee rooms.

It doesn't go for naught.

PAUL STRAND: Severino says the battle is no small deal.

Presidents serve just four or eight years,

but not their judicial picks.

All of these people are going to be on the bench for life.

And they're the ones who are deciding

so many important cases that are coming up.

Not only into my children's lifetime,

but into my grandchildren's lifetime.

We We think of the Supreme Court.

But you forget 99 plus percent of cases

happen and are finally decided at the district court

and appellate court level.

So it's wonderful that we have Neil Gorsuch on the Supreme


That was a huge victory.

But boy, we need to have these other seats filled with people

who have the same high principles

and commitment to the rule of law and the Constitution.

So while those at the top are holding things up right now,

groups like these are hoping grassroots pressure coming up

from below can get them to quit the stalling

and get on the move.

Paul Strand, CBN News, reporting from Capitol Hill.

Thanks, Paul.

US intelligence has concluded that it's quote, highly

probable that North Korea did test a hydrogen

bomb last weekend.

But even before that test, one group of scientists

had been watching for earthquakes.

That's to see if the North Koreans might be

testing powerful new weapons.

Erik Rosales brings us that story.

ERIK ROSALES: When an earthquake happens,

a seismologist with the help of instruments

can usually pinpoint its epicenter

and tell people how large it was.

But they do a lot more than that.

According to the Seismological Society of America,

most of what we know about North Korea's past nuclear tests

come directly from the work by seismologists.

These scientists study earthquakes and the energy

waves moving through the ground.


When a nuclear blast occurs, energy waves are created.

And studying them can pinpoint where the explosion happened.

On September 10th, 1996, the UN General Assembly

adopted the comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty,

which banned nuclear explosions anywhere on Earth,

preventing nuclear testing in the atmosphere, under water,

and even underground.

Our signature, along with that of Russia, China, France,

the United Kingdom, and the vast majority of nations

around the world will create an international barrier

against nuclear testing.

ERIK ROSALES: However, North Korea's rogue regime

is the only country to ignore the rules.

ERIK ROSALES: Lassina Zerbo is the executive secretary

of the comprehensive nuclear test ban treaty organization

located in Vienna, Austria.

It has more than 300 monitoring sites around the world.

He adds it was his organization that discovered and relayed

information about North Korea's testing of nukes

in 2006, 2009, and 2013.

And that data was sent to all 183 countries who

were part of the organization within a few hours,

faster than North Korea could go public about its own test.

Countries get information like its location, its magnitude,

the time, and depth of the shock waves.

It's important to note the organization never

tells a country which policies to create.

Scientists simply give the country its data

and let them reach their own conclusions.

Erik Rosales, CBN News, Washington.


Thanks, Erik.

Here at home, while our eyes are focused on Hurricane Irma,

Operation Blessing is still at work helping people

in Texas who were swamped by Hurricane Harvey.

OB volunteer teams are working in cities like Rockport,

Beaumont, and Port Arthur.

And the cleanup operations have been enormous.

But people who live in these areas

have been extremely grateful for Operation Blessing's help.

Operation Blessing is a blessing,

because not only were the young guys and the young ladies

helping, they were so kind and nice and understanding

about your loss.

You know, it's not just clean up,

it's we understand that this is a loss for you.

It's a loss for my family.

Gordon, it's so good to see that OB is still

helping those who need so much help after all the destruction

that Harvey caused.

And it's going to be a while.

It is going to be a while.

And Operation Blessing is asking specifically

for volunteers to come help with the cleanup effort in Port

Arthur and Beaumont, Texas.

So if you want to be a part of it, for volunteer information,

all you have to do is go to the website

and you can find out more.

And we encourage, as we're getting ready not just

for further relief efforts for Hurricane Harvey in Texas

but managing relief efforts for the entire state of Florida,

if you want to be a part of it, all you have to do is call us

right now, 1-800-700-7000.

Say, I want to be a part of Operation Blessing Disaster


We have people on the phones right now taking calls.

So call us now, 1-800-700-7000.


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