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.

Universal pre-K, free community college included in sweeping reconciliation bill

By: - September 13, 2021

WASHINGTON—The U.S. House Education & Labor Committee on Friday finished a marathon markup of legislation that would provide universal pre-K education, expand federal Pell Grants for college students and institute two years of free community college. The $761 billion measure, approved on a party-line 28-22 vote, will be combined with other pieces of Democrats’ giant […]

Biden to travel to New York, Pennsylvania and Virginia for 9/11 observances

By: - September 10, 2021

WASHINGTON—To honor the nearly 3,000 Americans who died 20 years ago on 9/11, President Joe Biden will visit the sites of the terrorist attacks. Biden on Saturday will observe the anniversary in New York City, where hijackers crashed two passenger jets into the World Trade Center, killing ​​2,753 people.  He’ll also visit Shanksville, Penn., where […]

House reconciliation package would provide path to citizenship

By: - September 6, 2021

A provision tucked in the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package would direct Congress to chart a path for citizenship for millions of undocumented people. If passed, the House provision would provide a pathway to citizenship for those in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, often referred to as Dreamers; farmworker workers; those who hold a […]

U.S. military has left Afghanistan

By: - August 30, 2021

WASHINGTON — Even as the last military planes left Kabul, members of Congress were still trying to facilitate the evacuations of more Americans and Afghans. Reps. Jason Crow (D-Co.), Andy Kim (D-N.J.) and Tom Malinowski (D-N.J.) are leading efforts to supply names and contacts of Afghans who helped the U.S. in the last 20 years […]

Voting by proxy becomes business as usual in the U.S. House

By: - August 20, 2021

WASHINGTON —Data from roll call votes shows that 171 U.S. House Democrats and 89 Republicans have voted by proxy at least once since House Speaker Nancy Pelosi  authorized the pandemic-era practice beginning last year. Pelosi has now announced the extension of proxy voting until Oct. 1 as the delta variant of the coronavirus continues to […]

U.S. House moderates won’t back Dem budget without passage of infrastructure bill

By: - August 13, 2021

WASHINGTON — Nine moderate U.S. House Democrats including Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey, Carolyn Bourdeaux of Georgia and Jared Golden of Maine are threatening to oppose a budget resolution needed to pass a major social policy package unless a bipartisan infrastructure bill is first signed into law, according to multiple media reports. Opposition from the […]

U.S. Senate to try again on voting rights in September

By: - August 11, 2021

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is planning to bring a comprehensive voting rights package to the Senate floor for a vote when the chamber returns from recess next month. Schumer, a New York Democrat, said Wednesday that the Senate will take up a compromise version of the voting and elections bill, S.1, […]

Black women with children excluded from federal cash assistance program, report finds

By: - August 4, 2021

WASHINGTON — A new research paper reviewed how each state implemented a federal program that has provided cash assistance to low income families over the last 25 years—and found that Black women with children repeatedly were excluded. On a call with reporters Wednesday, policy experts at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities outlined how […]

State legislators rally in D.C., urge Congress to act on voting rights

By: - August 4, 2021

WASHINGTON—U.S. Senate Democrats joined with dozens of state legislators at a rally outside the U.S. Capitol Tuesday afternoon, demanding that the Senate skip August recess and pass critical voting rights legislation in reaction to Republican-led states that have adopted restrictive voting laws. Dozens of legislators from North Carolina, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Texas, among others, […]

Klobuchar: Senate Dems ‘very close’ to a deal on revised voting rights bill

By: - July 30, 2021

WASHINGTON—Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar said Thursday that lawmakers attempting to negotiate a compromise elections overhaul bill are “very close to an agreement” on legislation, as Democrats struggle to respond to restrictive voting laws passed in Republican-led states. Klobuchar, the chairwoman of the Senate Rules & Administration Committee, has been meeting with other Senate Democrats about […]

Sen. Bob Mendendez speaking

Menendez among US lawmakers calling for more help for Cuban people

By: - July 29, 2021

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration is still trying to restore internet access cut off by the Cuban government after thousands of protesting Afro-Cubans took to the island’s streets calling for democratic reform. Florida lawmakers, both Democrats and Republicans, are lobbying the administration to support the protests, as well as quickly get internet access back to […]

U.S. Senate advances nomination of Stone-Manning for public lands post

By: - July 28, 2021

WASHINGTON—The U.S. Senate on Tuesday agreed 50-49 to bring to the floor the nomination of Montana’s Tracy Stone-Manning to head the Bureau of Land Management, following weeks of GOP attacks over her ties to a 1989 tree-spiking scheme. Due to a deadlocked 10-10 vote out of the U.S. Senate Energy & Natural Resources Committee, Senate […]