American Morning

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December 21st, 2011
09:31 AM ET

Vander Plaats says Santorum 'comes from us and not to us'

Long shot 2012 GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum placed all his chips on winning the Iowa Caucuses on Jan 3rd, and it just won him the backing of leaders of an influential conservative group in the state.

The President of the Family Leader, Bob Vander Plaats, is throwing his support behind the former Senator for the nomination. But in a new report this morning, there are questions about how he came to that decision.

This morning, Vander Plaats talks with Christine Romans about his endorsement of Santorum.

Filed under: 2012 • Iowa
December 21st, 2011
08:52 AM ET

Rep. Bachmann: No reason to back out of presidential race

2012 GOP Presidential candidate Rep. Michele Bachmann is on a bus tour of all 99 counties in Iowa, hoping for a late comeback with two weeks to go until the Iowa Caucus on Jan. 3rd.

Her campaign claims that the leader of a very influential conservative group asked her to consider getting out of the race.

This morning on American Morning, Rep. Bachmann talks with CNN's Ali Velshi and addressed the call from the Family Leader's Bob Vander Plaats for her to step aside, saying there's no reason for her to do that at this point.

Filed under: 2012 • GOP • Politics
December 21st, 2011
08:31 AM ET

Are Washington lawmakers getting rich with insider trading? Business Insider's Henry Blodget on how big the problem is

Some in Washington are accused of getting rich by doing things that would get you in some serious trouble.

Hedge funds are reportedly setting up meetings with lawmakers to discuss legislation. They're then trading on that information that you don't have access to. And they're making a lot of money. From the outside, this certainly looks a lot like insider trading.

This morning on American Morning, Business Insider founder and former sock analyst Henry Blodget explains how prevalent this practice is and what is being done to stop it.

Filed under: Congress • Insider trading
December 21st, 2011
08:19 AM ET

Why astronomers are geeking out about NASA discovery of Earth-sized planets

It's being called a cosmic milestone for planet hunters!

For the first time ever, NASA's Kepler space telescope spotted two Earth-sized planets outside our solar system, orbiting a sun-like star. Though scientists say 1,000 light years away and at 800 degrees it's too hot for life, it's still being hailed as an important moment for space research.

This morning on American Morning, Franklin Institute Science Museum chief astronomer Derrick Pitts explains what makes this discovery so important.

Filed under: Space
December 21st, 2011
08:02 AM ET

What's in GOP candidate Jon Huntsman's economic plan? Christine Romans breaks down the numbers

There's one 2012 GOP Presidential Candidate who is sitting out Iowa, focussing on New Hampshire.

Jon Huntsman is a two-time Governor of Utah, speaks Mandarin fluently and recently stepped down as President Obama's Ambassador to China. Though he is polling in single digits, his economic plan has garnered the endorsement of the Wall Street Journal.

Christine Romans has analyzed Newt Gingrich's and Mitt Romney's plans. So what's in Huntsman's plan? Christine explains here.

Filed under: 2012 • Economy • GOP
December 21st, 2011
07:57 AM ET

AM Minding Your Business for Dec. 21, 2011

Today on American Morning, Christine Romans reports on the morning business news headlines.

This morning, we're watching:

* U.S. stock futures are up again after a promising housing report helped send the Dow up 337 points. New home construction jumped more than 9% in November, much higher than expected. Housing permits - a gauge of future construction - also climbed nearly 6%.
* Positive news from Europe is also helping to lift stocks. Struggling banks there can begin placing orders for unlimited three-year loans from the European Central Bank. It's an attempt to keep credit flowing during the debt crisis.
* Banking sector stocks catching a breather after this ECB measure. Bank of America's stock, which is down more than 60% since the beginning of the year, is up nearly 1% in pre-market trading this morning.
* Bank of America could be close to settling an investigation with the Justice Department. At issue is whether it's Countrywide financial unit violated fair lending practices by encouraging those risky subprime mortgage loans. According to Bloomberg, the deal, which could be announced this week, could mean Countrwide customers would be compensated.
* Honda is now reportedly shipping cars made in China to North America. It's significant because companies import a lot of products from China to keep costs down.

Tune in to American Morning at 6am Eastern every day for the latest in business news.

Filed under: Minding Your Business