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.

More than 1,500 books have been banned in public schools, and a U.S. House panel asks why

By: - April 8, 2022

WASHINGTON — A U.S. House Oversight and Reform Committee panel on Thursday examined why thousands of books, predominantly written by marginalized authors, have been banned from public schools, and the impact of those actions on students and teachers. “Most books being targeted for censorship are books that introduce ideas about diversity or our common humanity, […]

Pause on federal student loan repayments extended by Biden through Aug. 31

By: - April 6, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration Wednesday announced its plans to extend the pause on federal student loan repayments until the end of August. “I recognized in recently extending the COVID-19 national emergency, we are still recovering from the pandemic and the unprecedented economic disruption it caused,” President Joe Biden said in a statement.  “If loan […]

Biden administration to halt pandemic policy blocking migrants who claim asylum

By: - April 1, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Friday the government will terminate a Trump-era policy that prevented migrants from claiming asylum during a health crisis, including the coronavirus pandemic. The policy will end on May 23, the CDC wrote in its notice. “There is no longer a serious danger that the entry […]

Insulin price cap approved by U.S. House as Georgia’s Warnock pushes for Senate passage

By: - April 1, 2022

WASHINGTON — The U.S. House on Thursday passed a bill on a bipartisan 232-193 vote that would limit the price of insulin, as congressional Democrats met throughout the day with health care advocates to make their case for the proposal.  Democratic Sens. Raphael Warnock of Georgia and Patty Murray of Washington state held a virtual […]

Biden signs law named for Emmett Till that makes lynching a federal hate crime

By: - March 30, 2022

WASHINGTON — Nearly 70 years after 14-year-old Emmett Till was kidnapped and murdered in Mississippi by two white men, President Joe Biden signed into law on Tuesday a bill to make lynching a federal hate crime.  “Lynching was pure terror to enforce the lie that not everyone belongs in America,” Biden said at  the Rose […]

Biden lays out a ‘fund the police’ budget plan

By: - March 29, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration is requesting billions in its fiscal 2023 budget from Congress to fund police departments, despite progressive Democrats’ calls for some of that spending to be reallocated to social services.  President Joe Biden’s budget request to Congress unveiled Monday asks for $30 billion for state and local governments to add more […]

GOP senators attack and interrupt in final day of questioning U.S. Supreme Court nominee

By: - March 24, 2022

WASHINGTON — In the third day of hearings Wednesday on the nomination of Ketanji Brown Jackson to the U.S. Supreme Court, several Republicans on the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee interrogated her about sentences she handed down for child pornography offenses, disagreeing vehemently with her judicial decisions. Republicans grilled her with questions she had already answered […]

Here’s what senators said on the first day of the U.S. Supreme Court hearings

By: and - March 21, 2022

WASHINGTON — The 22 members of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee each had 10 minutes on Monday to make opening statements about the nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, President Joe Biden’s pick for the U.S. Supreme Court.  Here’s what some had to say: Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa said that Republicans on the […]

Most HBCU bomb threats may be coming from one juvenile, FBI official tells Congress

By: - March 17, 2022

WASHINGTON — A top FBI official told members of a U.S. House panel on Thursday that the agency believes a single juvenile is behind most of the bomb threats made to more than 30 Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Ryan Young, executive assistant director of the Intelligence Branch at the FBI, said that the bomb […]

U.S. Senate backs shift to permanent daylight saving time

By: - March 15, 2022

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate with little debate on Tuesday unanimously supported a permanent change to daylight saving time, several days after Americans once again went through the hated “spring forward” ritual of changing their clocks. If the bill, the Sunshine Protection Act, clears the House, it would mean most states would stay on daylight […]

Biden urges city leaders to take advantage of billions in federal relief funds

By: - March 14, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden on Monday urged local and city governments to continue to use the $130 billion in funds allocated to them from the American Rescue Plan to help during the pandemic.   The president of the National League of Cities, Vince Williams of Union City, Georgia, introduced the president to attendees of the […]

Sen. Bob Mendendez speaking

Pressure ramps up to halt Trump-era policy that expels migrants at the border

By: - March 11, 2022

WASHINGTON — Senate Democrats and immigration advocates are pushing the White House to end a controversial Trump-era immigration policy enacted during the pandemic that allowed U.S. officials to expel migrants and asylum seekers at the border.  “I continue to be disappointed, deeply disappointed, in the administration’s response,” Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, a New York […]