American Morning

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September 30th, 2009
12:14 PM ET

Japan-Tennessee custody fight not so clear cut

TOKYO, Japan (CNN) - The case of a Tennessee man jailed in Japan for trying to snatch back his children from his estranged wife is not as clear-cut as it's been made out to be, authorities here said Wednesday.

The father, Christopher Savoie, apparently became a naturalized Japanese citizen four years ago, listing a permanent address in Tokyo, they said.

And while he and Noriko Savoie, a Japanese native, divorced in Tennessee, the two never annulled their marriage in Japan, Japanese officials said.

Christopher Savoie's current wife, Amy, spoke to Kiran Chetry on CNN's "American Morning" Wednesday.

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Filed under: World
September 30th, 2009
11:19 AM ET

Study: Driving while texting riskier than DUI

Some drivers call it fallout from life on the road in the digital age: Texting while driving

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="A study by the University of Utah found a driver is eight times more likely to crash while text messaging."]

A graphic public service announcement produced in the UK on the subject and widely seen on the Web in the United States illustrated the deadly results.

This issue is now the subject of a distracted driving summit in Washington D.C., drawing safety experts and leaders from the across the country.

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood says organizers hope to develop recommendations for reducing the problem.

“I think what we are attempting to do is raise the public awareness about how unsafe it is to text and drive and then also talk with folks about the way forward in terms of some solutions…”

Groups like the Governor's Highway Safety Association (GHSA) plan to attend the summit. The group initially came out against laws banning texting while driving but then did an about-face after meeting with the group's members, who saw that violent PSA and some alarming studies.


Filed under: Transportation
September 30th, 2009
10:30 AM ET

Do kids need more time in classrooms?

Shorter summer breaks... 9-hour school days...

Kids may hate it, but President Obama argues American students are way behind compared to students in other countries. He says longer school days and a longer school year is a way to level the playing field. CNN's Alina Cho reports.

Filed under: Education
September 30th, 2009
09:58 AM ET

Steele calls Tom Friedman a 'nut job' over latest column

From CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Steele appeared on CNN's American Morning Wednesday."]

(CNN) – Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele Wednesday beat back suggestions from some political commentators — most recently from the New York Times' Tom Friedman — that conservative opposition to President Obama is creating a political climate that may foreshadow attempts of violence against the commander in chief.

"Where do these nut jobs come from? Come on, stop this," Steele told CNN's John Roberts on American Morning in direct response to a quote from Friedman's column Wednesday equating the current political environment to that which occurred ahead of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin's assassination in 1995.

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Filed under: Politics
September 30th, 2009
09:53 AM ET

Watching You 24/7: Are you on the list?

The debate over privacy vs. security has been heating up ever since the government intensified its watch for terrorists operating within our borders.

The case of one man, who took a picture of a governor and ended up in jail, is shining a light on another secret way the government may be keeping an eye on you.

CNN's Gerri Willis reports for our special series "Watching You 24/7."

Filed under: Watching You 24/7
September 30th, 2009
09:42 AM ET

Public option dead?

There's been a major blow to the public option in the make or break push for health care reform.

Some Democrats on the Senate Finance Committee have joined Republicans – voting to keep a government-run plan out of their bill. Read more

So is the plan dead in the water? Will the president let it die? CNN's Jim Acosta reports.

Filed under: Politics
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