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Health Care in the Balance; Haitian Orphans Flight; U.S. Military Waging Help in Haiti; Big Banks in Focus; Doctors in Haiti Lack Tools, Supplies; Economics of Marriage

Aired January 19, 2010 - 09:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


KIRAN CHETRY, CNN ANCHOR: Thanks for being with us today. Meanwhile, the news continues. Here's "CNN NEWSROOM" with Kyra Phillips.

Good morning, Kyra.

KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning. Thanks so much, John and Kiran. Good morning, everyone. We're so glad you're getting your day going with us. We're working several developing stories that you need to know right now before you get out the door.

First, the special election for the nation. Ted Kennedy's seat up for grabs. And what it means for you? A final health care reform package.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have enough medical personnel at those hospitals, but what we need are very specific supplies.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

PHILLIPS: Doctors ready to operate but they're lacking the tools. We're taking you to Haiti and examining the dire medical need.

And financial security flip. You thought women got more benefits out of marriage? Ha! Wait until you hear the new normal.

Good morning, everybody. I'm Kyra Phillips. It's Tuesday, January 19th. Let's get your day started right here in the CNN NEWSROOM.

We're going to be talking to our Jim Acosta in Boston on the race with implications for all of us. He is going to be joining us live there in just a few minutes.

And also Mary Snow with a story that really pulled at all of our heartstrings. We'll be talking about those Haitian orphans.

And then Rob Marciano will be joining us coming up in just a few minutes talking about the storms from coast-to-coast, the heavy snow, and how it's affecting all of you as we get the day started.

Well, the polls are open in Massachusetts right now and it's time to pick somebody to fill the late Ted Kennedy's seat for the next three years actually. So, OK, you don't live there, maybe you're thinking this doesn't affect me, well, rethink it.

There's a much bigger picture here than Brown versus Coakley. This election has become the first public referendum on President Obama and health care reform.

Dan Lothian is at the polling place in Medford, Massachusetts right now. He is talking about how voter turnout will affect the race. And CNN's Jim Acosta watching the story from Boston.

Jim, let's go ahead and start with you.

JIM ACOSTA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Kyra, you know, the voices of the candidates have been heard. Now the voters get to have their say. And Kyra, they are angry. For Democrats, this could indeed be the midterm before the midterm, and it's shaping up as one nasty nor'easter.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

ACOSTA (voice-over): When the public is in a fighting mood, what better place to score some votes in Massachusetts than at Boston's sports arena, The Garden. Right before a hockey game.

SCOTT BROWN (R), MASSACHUSETTS SENATORIAL CANDIDATE: I'm (INAUDIBLE), I'm down 30 points.

ACOSTA: That's where the Republican and the special election here, Scott Brown was talking like an underdog even though polls now show he just might beat the once heavily favored Democrat, Martha Coakley.

MARTHA COAKLEY (D), MASSACHUSETTS SENATE CANDIDATE: I know that people are frustrated, they're angry. They may be focusing that in many different ways.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thanks to Scott for letting us keep the bail out money. Cheers to that.

ACOSTA: At this Brown campaign rally, Coakley supporters showed up drinking faux champagne and calling themselves "Bankers for Brown." Within seconds, tempers were flaring.

(On camera): Do you think Brown's honest?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't know. You tell me. What do you think? He doesn't appear honest to me.

MATT COLEMAN, MANAGER, SULLIVAN'S TAP: People are just plain angry.

ACOSTA (voice-over): Matt Coleman, manager at the Sullivan's Tap is an independent who left the GOP frustrated, and now he's mad at the Democrats, namely Coakley.

(On camera): Did Martha Coakley screw this race up?

COLEMAN: Without question. She took a pass. It's classic arrogance. Limousine live with arrogance.

ACOSTA (voice-over): Republicans say they're ticked off at the different references to Ted Kennedy's Senate seat.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's not Ted Kennedy's seat. It's the people's seat.

ACOSTA: And sports fans are blasting Coakley's reference to beloved Red Sox's veteran Curt Schilling as a Yankees fan.

DAN REA: Yes, but now Scott Brown has Curt Schilling.

COAKLEY: And another Yankee fan.

REA: Schilling?

COAKLEY: Yes.

REA: Curt Schilling, a Yankee fan?

COAKLEY: No. All right, I'm wrong -- I might -- I'm wrong.

REA: The Red Sox great pitcher of the bloody sock.

COAKLEY: Well, he's not there anymore.

ACOSTA: Over at Coakley headquarters, staffer Pedro Morales is telling voters get angry with the Republicans.

PEDRO MORALES, COAKLEY CAMPAIGN STAFF: The Republicans in general have a disaster when it comes to the Latino and minority communities, and we've very, very angry at them. It's payback time.

ACOSTA: Republican Scott Brown warns the public will become more enraged if he wins and Democrats try to pass health care reform while they still have a 60-vote majority before he takes office.

BROWN: Well, I think that's a mistake, because then the people will get more, I think, upset than they are now. Talk about a backroom deal.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

ACOSTA: And now some top Democratic officials in Washington are getting mad at Martha Coakley. As one key strategist told us yesterday, Kyra, they're upset that Coakley went on vacation over the holidays instead of campaigning for the Senate seat.

It is a sign that the Democratic Party is trying to put some distance between their candidate here in Massachusetts and President Obama.

And I should mention that Curt Schilling remark you heard during our piece, the Coakley campaign insists that was a joke from their candidate, and if that's the case I don't think Conan O'Brien and Jay Leno have much to worry about. That joke did not go over well -- Kyra.

PHILLIPS: Yes. No doubt. All right, Jim, we'll be talking about the race, of course, all day.

Let's go ahead and head over to Dan Lothian. He's at a polling place there in Medford, Mass.

So, Dan, how are the polls? Busy?

DAN LOTHIAN, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Well, fairly busy at this location where we're at. The polls opened here at 7:00 this morning and a steady stream of folks showing up here to vote.

The Secretary of State's Office not really being able to give us sort of any guidance as to what the statewide turnout will be like, although they expect roughly a million or so of the state's 4.1 million voters will head to the polls.

A little bit of snow falling here. In other cities, other states, I would say it might be a problem. But this is New England. They are used to bad weather so it's not expected to be much of a problem here today -- Kyra.

PHILLIPS: Well, let's talk about Obama's appearance there Sunday. Did it help bring out voters, do you think? And also if Brown wins, you know, this is going to complicate things for the White House with regard to health care reform.

LOTHIAN: It really will. On the first point of President Obama coming here, you know, it's unclear what the impact will be in terms of the votes. But what I can tell you is that it did provide sort of this big bolt or jolt, rather, for Democrats here in the state.

You know, Martha Coakley's campaign, as you heard in Jim Acosta's piece, has been described as lackluster. A lot of people have said that she hasn't really run a serious campaign, and so it was felt that if the president came in here he could provide a little bit of energy to her supporters.

And so from that standpoint some Democrats say that it's been effective. As to how it will impact the final vote, that's still up in the air.

But, you know, it truly -- this is monumental what is taking place here, because at stake is that 60th vote, which will not only impact health care but a lot of other things on President Obama's agenda.

What are the options? Well, some of the things that are being thrown around out there is that perhaps Democrats have to find a Republican in the Senate who can come onboard. That seems highly unlikely at this point. Also they could try to get this done if he does win, if the Republican wins. They could get try to get this done before he's sworn in. That again is not a good choice either, because there are some Democrats who are already talking -- suggesting that they may pull their support for health care reform because this would not play well at home with their voters.

So whatever, you know, this option B might be out there, none of it looks good at this point. And I can tell you, the White House is saying there is no option B, because they believe that Martha Coakley will win.

They're not looking at a backup plan right now. They believe she'll win and that there won't be an issue here to have that 60 Senate seat.

PHILLIPS: All right, we'll see. Dan Lothian, thanks so much. Of course we're watching the race and looking at the what-ifs next hour also. I'm going to talk with the "Boston Globe's" Chris Rowland if the people of Massachusetts are really ready to turn the page on Ted Kennedy and his legacy.

Well, right now, it might be the easiest way to get Haitians what they need. Open the door. Let it go.

And away they do go. U.S. Air Force C-17s dropped 55,000 pounds of bottled water and food into Haiti yesterday. It was the U.S. air drop of supplies. The general leading U.S. forces in Haiti says that the congestion and distribution problems could be letting up at the Port-au-Prince airport.

The U.N. Security Council could approve an increase in its Haiti peacekeeping force today. And security is still a huge concern for the thousands of Haitians in tent cities right now in the capital. People there are already reporting that stealing and raping are actually going on at night.

Another flight of mercy to tell you about. Dozens of Haitian orphans arriving in the U.S. today. Their caretakers hoping to place them with American families.

Our Mary Snow is in Pittsburgh where the children will be arriving possibly in the next hour. And we're all waiting to see the reaction from those kids, Mary.

MARY SNOW, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, a lot of anticipation, Kyra. They are expected to arrive perhaps in about 15 minutes here in Pittsburgh. They spent most of the night in Florida after leaving Haiti last night.

These children are from an orphanage that is run by two sisters from the Pittsburgh area. And this orphanage -- Gary Tuchman had profiled this orphanage just a few days ago and showed the damage to the building so that the children had to stay outside.

Now Pennsylvania governor, Ed Rendell, and medical teams flew to Haiti yesterday to try and evacuate these orphans, and his office says they ran into what they called haggling over paperwork at the embassy.

Now our teams in Haiti were able to confirm that 28 children boarded a C-130 plane with the governor last night, but the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center says that the numbers have been fluctuating all night, and the final count was 53 orphans.

Those children are going to be brought here to Children's Hospital when they arrive at Pittsburgh. They're going to be evaluated and treated. And now we can tell you there's a room waiting for them with cots and little teddy bears on each of those cots.

And they're going to be getting some rest, getting checkups, getting food, water, and medical supplies, and teams of volunteers are going to be greeting them at the airport to bring them here -- Kyra.

PHILLIPS: I can't wait to see how they react. We saw how they reacted to Crunch Berries cereal on the airplane. I can't wait to see how they react to the teddy bears, Mary. So then what's...

SNOW: Yes, and we saw...

PHILLIPS: Yes, go ahead.

SNOW: I was going to say we saw pictures of them on their way home from Haiti. And there were a lot of smiling faces and these children are -- you know, have been up. They're exhausted. But they look -- some of them look very happy on that plane.

PHILLIPS: Well, we'll be right there with you. We can't wait to see them get off that aircraft.

Mary Snow, thank you so much.

And we've got some new developments out of Haiti right now. These pictures, they're just coming into us here at the CNN NEWSROOM. U.S. military helicopters land just outside the Presidential palace. And why this could be excellent news for people in desperate need right now.

ROB MARCIANO, CNN METEOROLOGIST: I'm Rob Marciano in the CNN Severe Weather Center. Weather in Haiti, actually, remains the same. Dry, warm during the day and relatively cool at night.

Election weather for Boston and the rest of the state of Massachusetts, or the Commonwealth, little snow for that. And also another storm and a series of storms slamming into the west coast. We'll talk weather in just a few minutes.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

PHILLIPS: Want to take you straight to the Presidential palace in Port-au-Prince where the U.S. military is staging right now.

Karl Penhaul, of course, is there.

Karl, what's the 82nd Airborne Division getting ready to do? KARL PENHAUL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Kyra, over the last few minutes we've actually seen eight or nine Navy helicopters flying in, troops from the 82nd Airborne, into the grounds of the ruined Presidential palace.

You can make out the Presidential palace over there, and if our cameraman can pan off, you can now see in the shade of the trees there, parachuters from the 82nd Airborne. They have come out of those helicopters with heavy backpacks and supplies of water and small supplies of food.

Now that does not appear to be food aid for the Haitian people. It seems to be logistical support to feed and water themselves. It's not really clear what their mission will be. This looks like an advance security force, at least, establishing some kind of bridge head in the Presidential palace.

But certainly what it has done is arouse the curiosity of the Haitian people. Crowds have now turned out two and three deep around the Presidential palace to see what is going on. Now there seems to be a mixture of opinions about how good this is and how good this may not be.

We just talked to one man who said he is not in agreement with the arrival of U.S. military here. He said that right now this is not a question of more guns on the ground, he said what the Haitian people need right now is supplies.

But of course the Americans as well as the United Nations have had these fears of looting and security problems in Port-au-Prince, for that reason they are now putting security in place first before they bring the supplies.

Other Haitians, of course, welcome this. They say that Haiti has been shattered by the consequences of this earthquake, and for that reason they welcome the arrival of American troops.

Now, as you know, Kyra, there are strong family ties between Haitians here and the Haitians Diaspora in the United States. And in fact, many Haitians have served in the U.S. Army. In fact, I was talking to a guy who spent six years in the 101st Airborne just a few moments ago, and he said hey, it's good the American military are here. Let's see if they can help get this show on the road. Let's help them see if they can get the supplies out -- Kyra.

PHILLIPS: Wow, definitely shows the curiosity, the desperation. I even see the Haitian people there waving to those paratroopers through the gates. We'll follow the operation with you, Karl Penhaul, as you learn more. Appreciate it so much.

And it's pretty clear that the quake victims need all the help that they can get. And to find out how you can get involved. You can still go to CNN.com/impact. We've got links to more than five dozen organizations right now that are providing everything from basic needs to medical assistance.

Rob Marciano, we are talking about the rain, the snow, and now we're talking about mudslides in Southern California.

(WEATHER REPORT)

PHILLIPS: Yes, you know, one of my best friends live in La Canada, and her house along with some of the others are right there on the edge, you know, of those mountains. And it's weather like this that it always gets them really nervous.

MARCIANO: It's an uneasy feeling to say the least. I'm sure.

PHILLIPS: All right, Rob, thanks so much.

MARCIANO: You bet.

PHILLIPS: Well, medicines, bandages, surgical equipment, all in desperate need in Haiti right now with so many lives at stake. We're going to take you back to Port-au-Prince, and a firsthand account from our own Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

PHILLIPS: And time now to touch on some of the other stories that we're watching right now.

It's inauguration day for New Jersey's new governor. Republican Chris Christie beating incumbent Jon Corzine in November. He is going to be the first Republican to hold that office in eight years.

Make a difference. That's the message from the families of four police officers killed in Washington state. They are pleading with lawmakers to give judges more freedom to make their own decisions on setting bail. Guidelines for bail are blamed for letting Maurice Clemmons go free six days before he ambushed the officers at a coffee shop.

And Lakewood, Colorado, home of a different kind of barroom brawl. The bar owner opening up a can of you know what on a couple of attackers. Yes, you're looking at it. Even held them long enough until the police got there. It took about 10 minutes. And get this, the bar owner said he used moves he learned watching cage fighting on the bar's TV.

General ago, men were the primary breadwinners. That is so last generation. We're going to show you why.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

PHILLIPS: All right. This is when we just talked to Karl Penhaul a few minutes ago. He was live here at the Presidential palace in Port-au-Prince. And he was talking about military operations that are taking place. And we just now got this live picture thanks to Karl and his crew.

This is the 82nd Airborne Division of the Army being brought in, as Karl told us, with Navy helicopters. And he's not quite sure what they're gearing up today. He thinks possibly it could be a part of the security operation that's coming in to help out there in Port-au- Prince as we have seen problems now with looting and violence, even reports of rape taking place overnight in some of these tent cities.

So the 82nd Airborne finally touching down there in Port-au- Prince to help possibly with the security operation that is taking place.

Karl Penhaul is on the story. He's there live. We'll bring us some more information as it comes. But you can see right now, gearing up, getting their mission, and we will follow the operation as it unfolds.

Quick break. We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

ANNOUNCER: Live in the CNN NEWSROOM, Kyra Phillips.

PHILLIPS: Well, Wall Street is getting back to work today after a three-day weekend. But it doesn't look like -- well, we'll see much buying. Massive loss from one of the nation's biggest bank has investors pretty worried right now.

And Susan Lisovicz, she didn't have a day off, though. She was still working. And she's back at the New York Stock Exchange now.

Hey, Susan.

SUSAN LISOVICZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Kyra. Well, this is reality check time. It's a big week for corporate earnings overall. But specifically financial companies.

If we are in recovery mode, are we seeing big financial companies making money? Are they lending money? Are they putting more money aside for future losses? Well, the first one out of the gate this week, Citigroup and it's a disappointment. So we're expecting, Kyra, a weak open.

Citi lost nearly $7.6 billion on the final three months of 2009. Much of that was tied to paying back government bailout money, but Citi also set aside $8 billion to cover future loan losses.

Citi shares were under pressure in the premarket, and we don't have a read as the opening bell rings.

We have also a sweet deal, or maybe we should say bittersweet deal to talk about. We are talking chocolate here. Kraft finally is succeeding in its efforts to take over Cadbury, the 200-year-old British candy maker. The price tag, nearly 20 billion bucks. The agreement ends a months-long corporate battle that also involved Nestle. It involved Hershey. It involved Warren Buffett. It will create the world's largest chocolate maker.

The saga between Google and the Chinese government carries on. Google is going to postpone the launch of its mobile phone in China. Google isn't giving a reason for the decision but, of course, it comes amid a dispute with the Chinese government over allegations of Internet censorship and e-mail hacking.

And checking the numbers in the first minutes of trading, Kyra, a little bit of pressure for the Dow. The NASDAQ is hanging in there, up a few points. And Citi's share is down right now about 2 percent.

And we'll be back later, Kyra.

PHILLIPS: All right. Sounds good. Thanks so much, Susan.

LISOVICZ: You're welcome.

PHILLIPS: And quickly, we just got some pictures in. Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, we just got word the plane has landed. You may remember we were talking just a few minutes ago with our Mary Snow. She is there in Pittsburgh because, aboard the aircraft are the orphans headed into Pittsburgh from Haiti, orphans that have families waiting for them. The governor was a part of the mission. He was onboard with them. And you can see the governor actually there right over the bus. We are going to be able to hopefully see those kids coming off the aircraft. More than two dozen orphans arriving from Haiti with the governor. As soon as we see more action, we will bring it to you live. Apparently, this camera is about 100 yards from the aircraft. You can see the captain getting off now. Once we see those happy faces, we will take you to Mary Snow, the one covering the story for us, one that has definitely had us all talking this morning.

Also, you know in Haiti that so many people have been hurt. Doctors are doing everything they can and what they can with what they have, and it's not much.

Our chief medical correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, is there seeing it for himself.

Sanjay, I can just imagine, as a doctor, it's probably so hard for you to see so many doctors there on the ground like yourself and not having the tools to work with.

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: That is basically the problem, Kyra. It has been the problem for some days. It is getting better to some extent, but it's hard to describe how frustrating that is, and just the fact that it's happening. There are instruments, from what I understand, that are making it to the airport, but getting them literally from point A to point B, the logistics of that. The first couple of days were understandable, the roads simply were -- you couldn't navigate the roads with big supply trucks because there was too much debris in the roads. The roads have improved. So why these supplies, life-saving supplies that are so needed still have not gotten here is hard to understand.

Kyra, as we talked about, you have all sorts of different relief. You will talk about it for the months and years to come. But when it comes to medical supplies, the time line is very different. It's minutes and hours. People have injuries as a result of this earthquake. They survive, but they have terrible injuries. They need to get that relief. They need to have those supplies to be able to take care of them, otherwise they will die needlessly, you know, what is called a preventable death. That's the frustrating part, as you might imagine.

PHILLIPS: Sanjay, let me -- yes, let me ask you about that because this is one of the questions that we had this morning in our morning meeting. It's unprecedented, the amount of money flowing in to Haiti right now. It's surpassed what was given for Katrina and the tsunamis. There are so many people donating supplies as well. But Elizabeth Cohen, who is there with you, reported to us yesterday, showing us lots of supplies, but supplies doctors could use, because they were missing certain parts or it could not be plugged in, or whatever the issue was.

So I guess my question to you is, with so many people wanting to give, how do you know where the best place is to send your items, or is it just luck right now, because it's so chaotic there's just no way to organize getting the right things to the right doctors?

GUPTA: I'm getting a lot of e-mails asking that same question as well, people trying to get a hold of us saying, how can I give. Clearly, there is a lot of desire for that. They need some sort of coordination on the ground here, Kyra. There will be lessons learned from what's happens here. There is (ph) a lot of supplies.

Elizabeth Cohen, for example, is at the airport. Supplies are getting to the airport. Getting from the airport, which is a relatively unscathed, to places like this, where there is terrible destruction and people need the help, it's proving really not even necessarily hard to do, because we can go back and forth to the airport. It's just the coordination of it has been really, really difficult. So they need some sort of -- either a task force coordination team, or they need a person who is overseeing all of that. That's just not happening right now.

PHILLIPS: Got it. It's an angle we want to stay on top of and do everything we can to help in that regard, so whatever you can tell us that we can do or say, Sanjay, we appreciate it. There are so many people that want to give and we want the right supplies to get to the right people if that's even possible.

Thanks, Sanjay.

Let's take a look again at the live pictures out of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. We've got a little bit of a better shot here. This is coming from the affiliate, WPXI. We are glad they are there covering this. Why? Because it is one of these stories that we have been tied so close to.

These are the orphans from Haiti, arriving with the governor that you can see there. Each one, each baby, with the designated caretaker who has brought them over. Each one of these babies, soon to be with a family that has adopted them. Looking, it looks like we have a couple dozen -- a couple dozen --28 kids, OK, we are told, are coming off this aircraft right now. Apparently, we are getting word, it was sort of tough through the night -- (LAUGHTER) -- as you can imagine, making that trip with all of these babies. Right now, they will probably be -- sleep pretty well and be pretty darned excited to be in the arms of their new families.

So it's a story we have been tracking with Mary Snow. She is actually there. We were talking about the babies there in Haiti. We saw pictures of them. They were all gathered together on the blanket with the various care takers from the orphanages and other organizations that had been caring for them. It was great to see that these babies did not get held up in red tape for more time. And that they were able to get onboard this aircraft with the governor of Pennsylvania.

Now the orphans landing, and hopefully we will have them reuniting with those family members. That will hopefully be the next live shot we have for you. Fantastic story to bring you out of Haiti. We are watching so much death and destruction.

A quick break. More from the "CNN NEWSROOM" straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

PHILLIPS: Voters in Massachusetts going to the polls right now, picking their next Senator, and basically deciding whether the entire country will have health care reform. Scott Brown could become the first Republican Senator from Massachusetts since 1979. His main campaign issue has been his promise to vote against health care reform when he gets to Washington.

Now, Martha Coakley is the Democratic candidate running to keep the seat in the party. This race is also being seen as the first major referendum on the Obama presidency. The president was up there over the weekend stumping for Coakley. And whoever wins, well, they will be in the Senate seat for three more years. Of course, the White House is closely watching today's vote.

White House Correspondent Suzanne Malveaux, that means she is watching it too.

Hey, Suzanne, if Brown is elected, is there a plan B for the health care vote or does the Obama administration say, no, we're going to have our person.

SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN NEWS WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Kyra, publicly, the White House is saying there is no plan B. They still expect Martha Coakley will win. But privately, when you talk to Democratic advisors to the White House, who have been involved in negotiations, say that's not really true. The White House would not be flat-footed the next day if the worst-case scenario was actually realized, and they are going to be prepared for this. So there are some options Democrats are throwing out here very clearly.

One is trying to push forward health care reform before Scott Brown is seated, if he wins, if he is seated before he is certified. For a president who is emphasizing bipartisanship, working together, that would not a good option, because some Republicans would probably go bananas over that. So that's one possibility.

The other one is to push health care reform through the Senate with only 51 votes, a process called reconciliation. But the way that the Senate works, the ways that Congress works, there would be a lot of delays. And Democrats don't want that. The White House doesn't either. They want to move on to the next subject, which is obviously creating jobs and the economic situation, trying to make that better.

A third option here is trying to go back to the Republicans on the Senate side, the moderate Republicans, like Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins, and try to get them to sign on once again. That's not considered realistic.

And then the final option, which Democratic sources tell me would be the preference for the White House, is to try and convince Democrats in the House to support the Senate version of their bill. That way, it could go directly to the president's desk. He could sign it. It would be all settled and done. But, Kyra, if you talk to anybody up on Capitol Hill, they say they don't believe, at this point, that they have those votes, the number of votes on the Democratic side in the House to actually make that happen.

So this is a critical, critical race for this White House. If Martha Coakley loses, it will be a very tough push for the White House to get health care reform passed. So obviously, they are looking closely at the race in that race in Boston.

PHILLIPS: And so are we. It affects you and me, as well, Suzanne.

MALVEAUX: Absolutely, everybody. it affects everybody.

PHILLIPS: That's right. Darn right.

Thanks so much.

MALVEAUX: OK.

PHILLIPS: The White House has finally picked a date for President Obama's first State of the Union address. It's actually going to be January 27th, 9:00 p.m. eastern. That's one week from tomorrow. Of course, tune in to CNN for full coverage and analysis before and after the speech.

Rob Marciano, talking about homes in California today.

First it was the beautiful snow. Now unfortunately, it's the after affect of the wet, right?

(WEATHER REPORT)

PHILLIPS: The heart-wrenching destruction in Haiti, you've seen the images. You feel the need to help. But how can you be sure that your money is actually going to the best charity? We've got some more expert advice for you.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

PHILLIPS: All right. Just getting word, as if we haven't had enough heartache getting through the earthquake in Haiti, apparently we are getting word of an earthquake now near the Cayman Islands.

Rob Marciano just getting word about this as well; Rob, what have you been able to see and find out, I know this is just happening and just coming across.

ROB MARCIANO, AMS METEOROLOGIST: Yes, word out of the USGS this is a 5.8 magnitude, so similar in magnitude to the biggest aftershock that they felt in Haiti. Same depth, though, it's 10 kilometers so about six miles.

Let's pop-up GR-113 and we can show you the Google Earth to give you some perspective as far as the geography and location of this. Again, GR-113 in the control room, there you go.

So there you see Cuba. The Cayman Islands, is a very small islands south of Cuba. And that spot there in the middle is the epicenter of it, a 5.8 magnitude. Now, this is a completely different fault-line, but similar tectonic plate action happening where you've got the Caribbean plate slamming into the North American plate.

So you know, Kyra, we've seen a number of earthquakes really in the Western hemisphere the past week or so, since this quake. They are not necessarily related but it does -- it does seem when there is a large quake like we've seen, you know, the earth is just trying to settle. It's like an old house that has had some break in its foundation or some weakening in its foundation, that house is going to settle, it's going to crack, it's going to creek, it's going to move at times and this is probably what we're seeing here.

Well west of Haiti. They did not feel this in Haiti, I'm sure. But nonetheless, they felt it in Grand Cayman. No doubt about that. And there is possibilities that there -- it did some sort of damage in Grand Cayman. And we'll wait for a word out of that 5.8 magnitude earthquake right there in Grand -- Cayman Islands. Officially 32 miles east-southeast of Buttontown (ph), Grand Cayman, so very, very close if not onshore, just offshore, and shallow in depth.

That's the other thing. Even though 5.8 doesn't sound like a lot compared to 7.0, it's about 30 times less, but it's still shallow and that will create some shaking and it could very well do some damage and in some cases create some injuries. So we'll wait for a word out of that.

PHILLIPS: So well, I'm curious then, OK, it's a different fault line but the tectonic plates, the shift OK, we're feeling, we can see -- you've talked about the connection there.

So in any way, shape or form can we track this in any way to see if there's another area that could be affected or is it one of those things where you just have to wait and see?

MARCIANO: Yes, you've just got to wait and see. I mean, I'm sure the scientists at the USGS and around the world would love to have probes that dive deep into the earth's crust and mantle to be able to monitor these shifts and movements more closely, but it's really impossible to predict when and where the next small quake or aftershock might occur.

PHILLIPS: Got it. OK. Let us know as soon as you have more. I appreciate it, Rob.

MARCIANO: Yes.

PHILLIPS: And if you're just tuning in, an earthquake not far from the Cayman Islands there, 5.8 magnitude just south of Cuba, just west of Jamaica. We're tracking it right now with Rob.

A quick break, we'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

PHILLIPS: All right.

Ladies night is going to be a lot less interesting in Britain. The government is cracking down on excessive drinking and rowdy drunk people in the streets. Good luck with that. They're banning promotions like ladies drink free, and they're also forcing bartenders to offer glasses of water to drinkers. That's in place of just watering down the drinks, I guess. Now it's mandatory for bartenders to check IDs. Revolutionary.

Well, you are so ejected. Dominican winter league manager Jose Offerman was thrown out of the game and the league for life. That's right, took a swing at the umpire. Poor guy fell flat. Here we go again. Ouch. Well, the country is fearing for its safety, apparently. Offerman is a former major league all star, by the way, and he seems to have an ongoing anger management problem -- you seem to think. He was arrested a few years ago for hitting a couple of guys with a bat during a game in an independent league.

All right. It's time to get pumped up. You ready to rock out? I mean really rock out. OK. Let's have it.

Oh, yes, John Denver cutting loose. You think I'm just being sarcastic? There's actually a guy in Wisconsin who may just disagree. He's facing a $200 fine for playing John Denver too loud. Police asked him what he thought he was doing. He said, "Hey, I'm just rocking out." Yes, rocking out to John Denver. You know, that's like chilling to Quiet Riot.

Perfect segue to Christine Romans and the economy and marriage and men said to be getting a boost from divorce, from marriage financially.

CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN PERSONAL FINANCE EDITOR: Thank God you're a country boy if you marry an educated woman in this country because that's marrying up.

PHILLIPS: Because you're going to strike it rich. Believe me you don't have to be a country boy. There's women getting hosed all around the country.

ROMANS: Look, let's talk a little about what this Pew Report shows. Pew Research Center did a fantastic report studying 40 years of census data. What they found is that for so many years a woman's social and economic stability came from marrying a man and his job.

And now increasingly that is changing. They're calling it the rise of the wives. Look at this, Kyra. In 1970, 4 percent of women made more money than their husbands. Flash forward to 2007; 22 percent of women make more than their husbands. Very, very interesting statistics.

And you can see how this feeds into this idea of the he session or the man session. It's been going on for a very long time, but this economic downturn we have had has really reinforced what's already been happening here, that women increasingly over the years in the workplace have been able to make some gains, make some ground, and that a record number of them, one-fifth of American marriages, the woman is the breadwinner. Interesting.

PHILLIPS: I wonder if less women will get married now.

ROMANS: Actually the marriage is down, believe it or not.

PHILLIPS: Really?

ROMANS: It is. Marriage is down and you also have -- but you're much more likely if you are married, man or woman, you're much more likely to make more money and to be higher educated.

This is a big education story as well. You have now 54 percent of college graduates are women. And look at this. Today, in the American husband-wife team, 53 percent of men and women have the same education; 28 percent of women are better educated and only 19 percent of the husbands are better educated. So a real shift happening here, quite interesting.

And more college graduates now are women; 54 percent of everybody getting a diploma is a she.

PHILLIPS: Well, hey, we had to work so hard to break the glass ceiling. Remember that? Remember taking the breaking the glass ceiling 101 and we were dominated with men in this business and it's nice to see a shift.

ROMANS: It's not without its perils, though. There's still a lot of these issues of work-life balance and this recession has made it difficult for some women frankly to step out and take care of their kids or to have their babies, because they're afraid of getting out of this cycle and get out of, you know, the ladder. And also they're a little bit worried, especially if you don't have a partner who is making as much money, so it's difficult.

There is a Romans numeral for you about marriage.

PHILLIPS: And that is? Oh, it's about marriage.

ROMANS: 60 percent -- 60 percent of Americans are married and, guess what, Kyra, about 40 years ago, in 1970, it was 84 percent. Interesting, right? So fewer people are getting married, but those married couples tend to have a higher education and higher income.

PHILLIPS: Well, our Christine Romans is the perfect example of great husband, great marriage, beautiful kids, great job -- shall I continue?

ROMANS: And thank God I'm a country girl.

PHILLIPS: Amen. God bless you John Denver. Thanks, Christine.

For so many years a woman's social and economic stability came from marrying a man and his job; women increasingly over the years in the workplace have been able to make some gains, make some ground, and that a record number of them, one-fifth of American marriages, the woman is the breadwinner.>