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.

USDA to send out $1.4 billion to boost rural economies in the states

By: - February 3, 2022

WASHINGTON — U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced Wednesday that the agency is investing $1.4 billion into rural economies through job training, business loans and the expansion of technical assistance. “It’s a good day for rural America,” Vilsack, a former governor of Iowa, said during a call with reporters. Eight programs will dole […]

Biden cites 40-day timeline for Supreme Court confirmation

By: and - February 1, 2022

WASHINGTON — The chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Dick Durbin, and the panel’s top Republican, Chuck Grassley, met with the president Tuesday afternoon to discuss a 40-day confirmation timeline for a new Supreme Court pick. “The Constitution says, ‘advise and consent, advice and consent,’ and I’m serious when I say that I want the […]

Reports: Supreme Court Justice Breyer to step down

By: , and - January 27, 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 21, 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 […]

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 […]

Federal prosecutors file seditious conspiracy charges against Oath Keepers in Jan. 6 attack

By: - January 13, 2022

WASHINGTON — Stewart Rhodes, the founder of the far-right militia group the Oath Keepers, was charged with seditious conspiracy in organizing an attack on the U.S. Capitol and disrupting the Electoral College certification of the president, the Justice Department announced Thursday. Edward Vallejo, 63, of Phoenix is charged along with Rhodes in connection with events leading up to […]

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

By: - January 11, 2022

Senators from both parties expressed 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 Kansas Republican Sen. […]

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 6, 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 […]

Voting rights tops U.S. Senate agenda as Jan. 6 anniversary nears

By: - January 5, 2022

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer on Tuesday stressed that Democrats are prepared to change Senate rules to pass voting rights legislation — and linked the move to the attack on the U.S. Capitol by supporters of former President Donald Trump. “The election subversion efforts we’re seeing all across the country today are […]

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 […]

Biden administration resists Democrats’ pleas on student debt relief as deadline nears

By: - December 17, 2021

WASHINGTON — Congressional Democrats are urging the White House to extend the freeze on student loan repayments, and for the president to cancel up to $50,000 of student debt — but so far the administration is not budging. The standoff is one of the more noticeable splits between President Joe Biden and members of his […]