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.

Federal officials declare a public health emergency for monkeypox

By: - August 4, 2022

WASHINGTON —  U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra announced Thursday a public health emergency for the monkeypox virus, a declaration that allows the federal government to more quickly assist states with distributing vaccines and conducting testing and public health campaigns. “We’re prepared to take our response to the next level in addressing […]

Virginia Rep. Scott argues for Supreme Court to uphold college affirmative action policies

By: - August 2, 2022

WASHINGTON — U.S. House Education and Labor Committee Chairman Bobby Scott of Virginia has filed a brief along with 64 other House Democrats urging the Supreme Court to uphold the role that race plays in college admission policies at Harvard University and the University of North Carolina. “Narrowly tailored admissions policies that recognize race as one criterion — out […]

U.S. House passes ban on assault weapons after spate of gun violence

By: - August 1, 2022

WASHINGTON — The U.S. House of Representatives on Friday passed a ban on semi-automatic firearms — the weapons used in multiple mass shootings during the last three months — on a near party-line vote. With the 217-213 vote, the bill, H.R. 1808, will head to the evenly divided Senate, but it’s unlikely to advance there, as it would need all […]

Experts warn of election ‘havoc’ across the U.S. if North Carolina case succeeds

By: - July 29, 2022

WASHINGTON —  Legal experts on Thursday warned lawmakers on the U.S. House Administration Committee that if the U.S. Supreme Court upholds a North Carolina case that embraces a fringe election theory, it will undermine future elections across the country. “To be blunt, it would be extraordinarily destabilizing,” said Carolyn Shapiro, a law professor at the […]

Gun company CEOs tell Congress they’re not to blame for mass shootings

By: - July 27, 2022

WASHINGTON — The CEOs of major gun manufacturing companies told a U.S. House panel on Wednesday that their production of AR-15-style guns did not contribute to recent mass shootings that left 29 people dead, and that the killings were due to the actions of individual shooters. Ahead of the hearing, the House Oversight & Reform […]

Biden tests positive for COVID-19

By: and - July 21, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden has tested positive for COVID-19 and is experiencing mild symptoms, the White House announced Thursday morning. Biden, 79, is fully vaccinated against the virus and has twice received booster doses, according to the statement. He is taking Paxlovid, an antiviral prescription medication that is meant to reduce the severity of […]

Progressives renew call for U.S. Supreme Court expansion after abortion rights decision

By: - July 19, 2022

WASHINGTON — A group of U.S. House Democrats Monday called for the passage of legislation that would add four justices to the Supreme Court, following the overturning of the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that provided the constitutional right to abortion. “It’s an ultra-right-wing Republican Supreme Court,” Rep. Hank Johnson of Georgia said during a press conference […]

U.S. inflation hits a 40-year high in June

By: - July 13, 2022

WASHINGTON — U.S. inflation reached a 40-year high for June as prices for gas, food and rent increased, according to the latest Consumer Price Index from the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Wednesday. Consumer prices for all items increased 9.1 percent for the 12 months ending in June compared to last year, the biggest year-to-year increase since […]

An immigrant mother from Cuba sits with her sons after crossing the border from Mexico

Courts take the lead role as U.S. immigration policy remains in limbo

By: - July 8, 2022

WASHINGTON — Eighteen months into the Biden administration, immigration reform has stalled despite campaign promises to reform the system, with the most recent movement on immigration policy doled out by the U.S. Supreme Court and in lower federal courts. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Biden administration in a 5-4 decision on June 30 that […]

U.S. House panel presses gun makers to testify before Congress

By: - July 7, 2022

WASHINGTON — The chair of the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Reform on Thursday said she has requested that CEOs of three gun manufacturing companies appear before Congress to testify at a hearing later this month on gun violence. Chair Carolyn B. Maloney of New York said she has asked for appearances by Marty Daniel of […]

Congress sends Biden historic gun safety legislation, with GOP support

By: - June 25, 2022

WASHINGTON — Congress on Friday cleared the most comprehensive federal gun safety legislation in nearly 30 years, a bipartisan package that will now head to President Joe Biden’s desk for his signature. In a 65-33  vote, the bill, comprised of eight provisions, passed the U.S. Senate late Thursday. The House on Friday joined, approving the Senate’s bill 234-193, with […]

U.S. Supreme Court expands gun rights in striking down New York concealed carry law

By: - June 23, 2022

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday struck down a New York law that made it illegal to carry a firearm in public without showing a special need for protection. The court ruled that the state’s concealed carry law violates the 14th Amendment of the Constitution — a major decision that expands the Second […]