Author

Robin Bravender

Robin Bravender

Robin Bravender was the States Newsroom Washington Bureau Chief from January 2019 until June 2020. She coordinated the network’s national coverage and reported on states’ congressional delegations, federal agencies, the White House and the federal courts. Prior to that, Robin was an editor and reporter at E&E News, a reporter at Politico, and a freelance producer for Reuters TV.

U.S. Supreme Court tosses gun case as Kavanaugh urges future debate

By: - April 29, 2020

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday avoided issuing a landmark Second Amendment ruling in a closely watched gun rights case, but set the stage for future legal battles. A divided court ruled that a challenge to New York City gun restrictions was moot because the city had later changed its regulations. The case had been billed […]

Embattled Va. Dems stockpile cash ahead of November

By: - April 28, 2020

WASHINGTON — Targeted Democratic incumbents from Virginia’s U.S. congressional delegation were padding their war chests as the election year kicked off. The COVID-19 pandemic has altered the landscape for politicians in Virginia and across the country as many have been forced to cut back on active fundraising and campaigning. But the most recent campaign finance […]

U.S. Congress passes $484 billion relief bill as lawmakers pledge future aid for states

By: - April 23, 2020

WASHINGTON — The U.S. House on Thursday overwhelmingly approved nearly $500 billion in additional COVID-19 relief, the bulk of which is aimed at buoying small businesses after loan funding dried up. The House cleared the $484 billion funding bill along bipartisan lines as some lawmakers returned to Washington for the first time since March. The […]

COVID-19 is hitting aircraft carriers and other Navy ships. What are the risks for Virginia sailors?  

By: - April 10, 2020

WASHINGTON — The COVID-19 outbreak on the USS Theodore Roosevelt aircraft carrier led to the quarantine of thousands of sailors, a firing of captain who pleaded for help, the resignation of the acting U.S. Navy secretary and broad concerns about the safety of servicemembers confined to cramped quarters aboard vessels. Those concerns are acute in […]

Trump ousts another watchdog as critics see ‘disturbing pattern’ 

By: - April 8, 2020

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Tuesday ousted the second federal watchdog in the span of five days as congressional Democrats accused him of purging federal employees for political reasons. Trump removed the Defense Department’s Acting Inspector General, Glenn Fine, who had been on the job since early 2016. Last week, Fine had been named by a group of […]

Behemoth $2 trillion COVID-19 response bill clears U.S. House, signed by Trump

By: - March 27, 2020

WASHINGTON — A $2 trillion bill to aid workers, health care providers and businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic passed the U.S. House on Friday and was signed by President Donald Trump. https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1243637430483390470?s=20 Many House members reconvened in Washington to approve the 880-page measure, which stands to be the largest economic aid package in U.S. history. The […]

Obama stimulus watchdog: ‘Bad guys’ will make play for COVID-19 relief cash

By: - March 27, 2020

WASHINGTON — Earl Devaney is feeling déjà vu. Devaney, a former longtime federal watchdog, was hired in 2009 to police the distribution of $840 billion in federal stimulus spending for the Obama administration. He had previously worked for the U.S. Secret Service, the U.S. EPA’s environmental enforcement division and as the Interior Department’s inspector general. Now happily […]

Pandemic spurs U.S. Senate to pass historic aid package

By: - March 26, 2020

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate late Wednesday night approved a $2 trillion spending bill that aims to provide economic relief for workers and businesses and to aid hospitals and states reeling from the COVID-19 pandemic. The chamber voted 96-0 to pass the bill in an unusual display of bipartisanship. “This is not the first step Congress […]

U.S. Senate vows ‘big help, quick help’ with $2T coronavirus bill

By: - March 25, 2020

WASHINGTON — Lawmakers announced the framework for a bipartisan deal on a $2 trillion spending package early Wednesday morning, but specifics of a final bill and a timeline for enactment remain uncertain. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said that he expected the chamber to pass the legislation on Wednesday. He said the bill isn’t a […]

At least 2 members of Congress have coronavirus

By: - March 19, 2020

WASHINGTON — Two members of the U.S. House announced Wednesday that they had tested positive for COVID-19, leading other lawmakers to announce their own self-quarantine plans and increasing uncertainty about how far the illness has already spread on Capitol Hill. Florida Republican Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart issued a statement Wednesday that he had tested positive for COVID-19. He […]

Can an unusual coalition budge Congress on pipeline reforms? 

By: - March 17, 2020

WASHINGTON — Property rights advocates and environmentalists are often foes when it comes to federal regulations. But they’ve found some common ground in their shared desire to prod Congress and the courts to overhaul the federal permitting process for natural gas pipelines. Property rights advocates contend that the current system enables industry to unfairly seize […]

U.S. Senate votes to ax DeVos student loan policy

By: - March 12, 2020

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate voted on Wednesday to overturn a controversial regulation from Education Secretary Betsy DeVos that her critics say hurts defrauded student loan borrowers. Senate Democrats forced the vote under the Congressional Review Act, a law that allows Congress to overturn federal rules within 60 days after they’re finalized. The U.S. House […]