Author

Ariana Figueroa

Ariana Figueroa

Ariana Figueroa covers the nation's capital for States Newsroom, a network of state-based nonprofit news outlets that includes The Missouri Independent. Her areas of coverage include politics and policy, lobbying, elections and campaign finance. Before joining States Newsroom, Ariana covered public health and chemical policy on Capitol Hill for E&E News. As a Florida native, she's worked for the Miami Herald and her hometown paper, the Tampa Bay Times. Her work has also appeared in the Chicago Tribune and NPR. She is a graduate of the University of Florida.

Joe Biden’s big social spending bill caught in snags in the Senate

By: - December 17, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden’s giant social and climate spending bill on Thursday night appeared stalled in the U.S. Senate for some time to come, a deep frustration for congressional Democrats who aimed to pass the ambitious package by the Christmas recess. At risk also is a temporary expansion of the child tax credit, the […]

Democratic governors press U.S. Senate to act on voting rights legislation

By: - December 13, 2021

WASHINGTON — Seventeen Democratic governors are urging the U.S. Senate to pass two bills that aim to protect voting rights. Both measures need 60 votes to advance under Senate rules but have been stalled by Republican opposition in the evenly divided Senate. “Without decisive action by the federal government this year to protect voters’ access […]

U.S. House progressives file resolution yanking Boebert committee assignments

By: and - December 9, 2021

WASHINGTON — U.S. House progressives are pushing to strip Rep. Lauren Boebert of her committee assignments after the Colorado Republican suggested Minnesota’s Rep. Ilhan Omar, one of only three Muslims in Congress, was a terrorist. Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., introduced a resolution Wednesday to remove Boebert from the Natural Resources Committee and Budget Committee for […]

Congress gives up on attempt to make women register for the draft after GOP outcry

By: - December 8, 2021

WASHINGTON — A bipartisan provision in an annual defense measure that would have required all young Americans to register for the military draft has been cut following a Republican backlash. Lawmakers tried to include the provision in the $777.9 billion measure, the National Defense Authorization Act of 2022, to require all Americans — including women […]

House Republicans slam treatment of Jan. 6 defendants held at D.C. jail

By: - December 8, 2021

WASHINGTON — Four House Republicans held a Tuesday press conference to complain about the poor conditions at a District of Columbia jail housing inmates charged with violence in connection with the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.   But a District of Columbia advocate for prison reform in an interview said that jail and another […]

Women would sign up for the military draft under defense bill in Congress

By: - December 6, 2021

WASHINGTON — As the Senate works to finalize a major annual defense measure, there is a bipartisan push to include a requirement that all young Americans — including women — for the first time register for the military draft. The $777.9 billion measure, the National Defense Authorization Act of 2022, also would allocate millions to […]

U.S. Supreme Court considers new limits on abortions in Mississippi case

By: and - December 1, 2021

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court is weighing potentially sweeping changes to the right to an abortion, after two hours of arguments Wednesday morning on a Mississippi law that bans most abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy. The court’s conservatives, who hold a 6-3 majority, appeared through their questions to be sympathetic to Mississippi’s arguments that its […]

Protesters rally at U.S. Supreme Court as justices hear landmark abortion case

By: - December 1, 2021

WASHINGTON — Lucia Ruta remembers a time when abortions were illegal. A native of Washington, D.C., she says she received an abortion in a back alley when she was 16, in the 1960s.  “The doctor told me that if I made as so much a whimper, he was going to stop and kick me out,” […]

House Democrats pass Biden’s $1.85 trillion ‘Build Back Better’ plan

By: , and - November 19, 2021

WASHINGTON — U.S. House Democrats united around a landmark $1.85 trillion social spending and climate bill on Friday, sending the major plank of President Joe Biden’s economic agenda to the Senate. Democratic leaders in the House heralded the 220-213 near party-line vote on the so-called Build Back Better bill, touting its provisions on child care, education, health care, taxes […]

Immigrants make last-ditch plea for deportation protections, work permits in Build Back Better

By: - November 19, 2021

WASHINGTON — Undocumented workers and immigration advocates are pushing for Democrats to keep work permits and protections from deportations in the final version of the $1.85 trillion social spending and climate package that the U.S. House is set to vote on as soon as Thursday night. Those immigration provisions face elimination when the bill moves […]

Virginia parents, GOP lawmakers vow national push for ‘parents’ rights’ in public schools

By: - November 16, 2021

WASHINGTON — Republican lawmakers and Virginia parents trying to capitalize on their success in the November election on Tuesday gathered across from the U.S. Capitol to voice their opposition to mask mandates and critical race theory. The ranking Republican on the U.S. House Education and Labor Committee, Virginia Foxx of North Carolina, told the small […]

Biden signs $1.2T infrastructure bill: ‘America is moving again’

By: , and - November 15, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden on Monday signed into law his $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill during a ceremony at the White House packed with some 800 supporters, heralding what he said was a “truly consequential” spending bill that will improve Americans’ day-to-day lives. But Democrats also emphasized that there is more to come—a $1.85 trillion […]