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.

Supreme Court Justice Breyer to step down

By: , and - January 26, 2022

WASHINGTON — U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer is planning to announce his retirement in the coming days, according to multiple press reports Wednesday. The decision by the 83-year-old justice, who was nominated by President Bill Clinton in 1994, would give President Joe Biden his first chance to nominate a member of the Supreme Court, […]

With voting rights stalled, some senators mull an update to the Electoral Count Act

By: - January 22, 2022

WASHINGTON — A bipartisan group of senators is exploring legislation to overhaul how Congress counts Electoral College votes, but backers of stalled voting rights legislation are lukewarm on the effort as a substitute. The Electoral Count Act is an obscure law that has come under recent scrutiny, a year after the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol […]

Agriculture secretary pressed about pandemic relief funds for farmers

By: - January 21, 2022

WASHINGTON — Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack faced questions on how his agency is doling out emergency pandemic aid and fostering collaboration with historically Black colleges during a Thursday hearing before the House Agriculture Committee. Committee Chairman David Scott, a Georgia Democrat, asked Vilsack for “critical updates on the implementation of pandemic relief programs, including the […]

Online orders for free at-home COVID tests to begin Jan. 19

By: - January 14, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration on Friday launched a new website for Americans to request up to four free COVID-19 tests per household. The administration is buying 1 billion at-home rapid COVID-19 tests, and Americans will be able to begin ordering the tests online on Jan. 19 at COVIDtests.gov. This is part of the administration’s effort to […]

Sinema won’t support changes in the Senate filibuster, in setback for voting rights bill

By: - January 13, 2022

WASHINGTON — Arizona Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinema on Thursday appeared to end a push by Democrats to change the Senate’s filibuster rules and pass major voting rights legislation. Sinema said during a Senate floor speech that she believed any changes to the filibuster would continue to create political division, despite her concerns over a wave […]

Biden sends medical teams to 6 states, promises more free COVID tests and masks

By: - January 13, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden announced Thursday that the federal government will deploy military medical units to six states to assist hospitals overwhelmed with the recent spike of the omicron coronavirus variant. Starting next week, more than 120 medical personnel — the beginning of a deployment of 1,000 service members — will go to hospitals […]

Congressional Black Caucus calls for Senate action on voting rights

By: - January 13, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden is expected to meet with Senate Democrats on Thursday to push for the swift passage of two voting rights bills, and members of the Congressional Black Caucus are applying pressure for action as well. During a press conference at the Capitol on Wednesday, caucus Chair Joyce Beatty said that members […]

Schumer insists ‘failure is not an option’ as voting rights fight intensifies

By: - January 12, 2022

WASHINGTON — Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said that the Senate will act as soon as Wednesday to attempt to again pass voting rights legislation. “Failure is not an option for the democracy of America,” the New York Democrat said at a Tuesday press conference with other Senate Democrats. “We’re running out of time.” Schumer […]

Complaints about White House handling of COVID-19 aired at U.S. Senate hearing

By: - January 11, 2022

WASHINGTON — Senators from both political parties expressed their frustration with the Biden administration coronavirus response team during a Tuesday hearing that keyed in on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidance on vaccines, as well as the shortage of COVID-19 tests available for Americans. The hearing also was highlighted by a tense exchange between […]

Biden in Jan. 6 speech decries ‘web of lies’ created by Trump about 2020 election

By: - January 6, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden on Thursday warned of the dangers of a collapse of American democracy, standing in a historic chamber in the U.S. Capitol that was besieged by an angry mob of pro-Trump supporters who attempted to halt the certification of the 2020 presidential election. “We are in the battle for the soul […]

Here’s what’s happening in D.C. on the Jan. 6 anniversary

By: - January 5, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden will deliver a speech Thursday in the heart of the U.S. Capitol to mark the first anniversary of the insurrection there. One year ago, former President Donald Trump incited a mob of his supporters, and encouraged them to storm the Capitol in an attempt to stop Congress from certifying the electoral […]

Schumer says U.S. Senate to consider changing the filibuster if voting rights stalls

By: - January 3, 2022

WASHINGTON — Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer warned on Monday that the Senate is prepared to debate changes in the filibuster if Republicans continue to block the advancement of voting rights legislation. In a sternly worded letter to other senators, the New York Democrat set a deadline of Jan. 17 for the chamber to consider revising the […]