American Morning

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March 24th, 2010
08:00 AM ET

Jobless rate nearly double for African-Americans

(CNN) – If you're looking for work in this economy there are plenty of experienced, educated professionals out there pounding the pavement with you. And if you happen to be black, your odds of securing a job just got slimmer.

According to a new National Urban League report, the unemployment rate for African-Americans is nearly twice as high as it is for whites in this country.

Judi Redmen hasn't had a full time job in three years, despite having three degrees and sending out ten resumes a day. She joined us on Wednesday's American Morning, along with Marc Morial, president of the National Urban League

Filed under: Economy
March 24th, 2010
07:00 AM ET

Are the Tea Party protests dangerous for Republicans?

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="A supporter of the Tea Party movement salutes at the reciting of the Pledge of Allegiance during a demonstration outside the US Capitol on March 20, 2010."]

By Carol Costello, CNN

(CNN) – Republicans are walking a tightrope when it comes to the Tea Party movement. On one hand, it needs its passion; on the other hand it doesn’t need the controversy it sometimes brings – especially if it’s racially tinged.

While Republican Party leaders say they don’t condone “ugly talk,”’s Katie Connelly writes, “they encourage the sort of anger that boils over into such foul insults...” And, some analysts say, because of that, the “ugliness” rubs off on the Republican Party. Connelly asks, “has the Tea Party protests become loud, mad and dangerous for Republicans?”

Lenny McCallister is African-American, a Tea Party member and a conservative Republican. He says Republicans “have to speak out against this stuff because it does not fit our principles, morals or values. At the same time we cannot alienate the most active aspects of the conservative base at this time.”

He’s calling on conservatives to help the Republican Party walk that tightrope in a way they did not in 2009. Last year, when Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele denounced Rush Limbaugh’s “incendiary talk,” he ended up apologizing for his remarks.

Steele and other Republican leaders did condemn those who shouted racial slurs at black lawmakers this past weekend, but rejected the notion that its association with the Tea Party is dangerous because, “at its core it’s about shared conservative values, limited government, lower taxes and individual freedom.”

Tea Party's bad apples? Video

Some Republicans say the real danger for their party is in not saying this loudly enough. Princella Smith is one of some thirty African-American Republicans running for Congress. She says, “I’m a small town girl and so what I’m espousing are small town, every day American principles. I’ve gotten positive response from Republicans and Tea Partiers.” And, she adds, that’s what should be shouted at Tea Party events across the country.

McCallister, who is a popular speaker at Tea Party events, agrees. He says Republicans and Tea Party members should strongly discourage “fringe elements” that show up at Tea Party rallies. They should not be made welcome, he says, and his party should make that resoundingly clear.

Filed under: Politics
March 24th, 2010
05:51 AM ET

LIVE Blog: Obama set to sign executive order on abortion limits

Editor's Note: Welcome to American Morning's LIVE Blog where you can discuss the "most news in the morning" with us each and every day. Join the live chat during the program by adding your comments below. It's your chance to share your thoughts on the day's headlines. Keep in mind, you have a better chance of having your comment get past our moderators if you follow our rules: 1) Keep it brief 2) No writing in ALL CAPS 3) Use your real name (first name only is fine) 4) No links 5) Watch your language (that includes $#&*).

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Pres. Obama, surrounded by lawmakers, signs the health care insurance reform legislation in the East Room of the White House on March 23, 2010."]

(CNN) - President Obama will sign an executive order Wednesday that ensures that existing limits on the federal funding of abortion remain in place under the new health care overhaul law.

Unlike the signing of the health care bill into law Tuesday, which was conducted under the glare of media cameras, the event Wednesday will be closed to the news media.

It will be attended by Rep. Bart Stupak of Michigan and 12 of his anti-abortion Democratic House colleagues, without whose help the landmark overhaul bill would not have passed, political observers say.

The White House said the executive order reaffirms longstanding restrictions on the federal funding of abortion in the new law. FULL STORY

Sound off: Share your personal stories with us. How will the health care reform bill affect you? Join the LIVE blog below and chat with us during the show. And please feel free to weigh in on any of the other topics we're covering this morning as well.

Filed under: LIVE Blog
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