Author

Ariana Figueroa

Ariana Figueroa

Ariana covers the nation's capital for States Newsroom. Her areas of coverage include politics and policy, lobbying, elections and campaign finance.

Congress passed $900 billion COVID relief package. Here’s what’s in the bill — and what’s out

By: and - December 22, 2020

Congress on Monday night approved and sent to President Donald Trump the first major COVID-19 relief measure since the spring, a sprawling spending bill that would provide $900 billion in pandemic-related aid but still didn’t go far enough for many Democrats. House leaders divided the bill into two parts and passed the emergency relief portion […]

Workers’ COVID lawsuits could be quashed under GOP push in Congress

By: - December 18, 2020

WASHINGTON — A wrongful death lawsuit filed in connection with a Tyson meat packing facility in Iowa alleged that managers secretly took bets on how many employees would get sick from COVID-19. Tyson fired seven managers at the Waterloo pork processing plant following an independent investigation into the betting allegations and a wave of national publicity. But […]

Joe Biden to nominate Pete Buttigieg for transportation secretary

By: - December 16, 2020

President-elect Joe Biden said Wednesday he will nominate former presidential primary rival Pete Buttigieg to serve in his Cabinet as secretary of transportation. “What I admire about Pete, is he’s always clear about who he is, what he believes and how he wants to bring people in, not exclude them,” Biden said at an appearance […]

Supreme Court rejects lawsuit backed by Missouri AG Schmitt trying to overturn presidential election

By: - December 11, 2020

WASHINGTON —The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday turned aside a Texas lawsuit that sought to derail the presidential election results from four battleground states, despite pressure on the justices from President Donald Trump on social media. “Texas has not demonstrated a judicially cognizable interest in the manner in which another State conducts its elections,” according […]

Half of U.S. House GOP, including five from Missouri, back lawsuit claiming election ‘irregularities’

By: - December 11, 2020

WASHINGTON—More than 100 U.S. House Republicans on Thursday backed a long-shot Texas lawsuit that seeks to delay the certification of presidential election results for Pennsylvania, Georgia, Michigan and Wisconsin, battleground states that President-elect Joe Biden won. In asking to join the suit filed in the U.S. Supreme Court, Louisiana Rep. Mike Johnson led 105 of […]

U.S. House passes bill to avert government shutdown while COVID relief talks drag on

By: - December 10, 2020

WASHINGTON—The House on Wednesday voted to pass a stopgap spending bill, preventing a government shutdown and giving a group of bipartisan lawmakers another week to negotiate a coronavirus relief package.   In an overwhelming 343-67 vote, House members backed the stopgap, which would extend fiscal 2021 funding until Dec. 18 while talks continue on the stalled […]

Congress set to strip Confederate names from U.S. military bases, flouting Trump veto threat

By: - December 8, 2020

WASHINGTON — Congress this week is expected to pass a massive defense policy bill that President Donald Trump has threatened to veto because it would remove the names of Confederate generals from military bases across the South. Members of the House and Senate forged a bipartisan agreement to rename the 10 bases in the annual […]

New pandemic relief proposal rolled out by bipartisan group in Congress

By: - December 1, 2020

WASHINGTON—More than a dozen U.S. House and Senate members are pushing for a bipartisan coronavirus relief package to aid struggling states and local governments and fund programs such as unemployment and rental assistance that are set to expire later this month. In a Tuesday press conference, lawmakers unveiled a four-month, $908 billion proposal that would […]

Democratic U.S. Senators urge federal funding for state distribution of COVID vaccine

By: - November 30, 2020

WASHINGTON — More than a dozen U.S. Senate Democrats are urging congressional leaders to include “robust” funding in any coronavirus relief package for states to prepare for vaccine distribution. “Dedicated funding for COVID-19 vaccine distribution is especially critical now as jurisdictions are facing historic budget shortfalls amid the pandemic and funding for health departments had […]

Immigration advocates push Biden to not just bring back DACA but expand it

By: - November 24, 2020

WASHINGTON—President-elect Joe Biden is promising to reinstate an Obama-era program that shields deportation for some undocumented people who were brought to the United States by their parents when they were children. But immigration advocates are pushing for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program to not just be reaffirmed but expanded, and written into law. […]

Joe Biden promises ‘no national shutdown’ despite COVID surge

By: - November 20, 2020

WASHINGTON — President-elect Joe Biden pressed the urgent need for economic relief and a vaccine distribution plan for states and tribes after a video meeting Thursday with bipartisan leaders of the National Governors Association. But Biden in a press conference in Wilmington, Del., also vowed there will be “no national shutdown” despite a surge in […]

Republicans in Congress chime in on Trump claims of a stolen election

By: - November 11, 2020

WASHINGTON—Some Republicans in Congress are agreeing with President Donald Trump’s baseless claims that the election was stolen from him, and backing legal challenges to voting results in states won by President-elect Joe Biden. “For the integrity of the electoral process, and the system that we have chosen to effectuate our democracy, we have got to […]