Author

Ariana Figueroa

Ariana Figueroa

Ariana Figueroa covers the nation's capital for States Newsroom, a network of state-based nonprofit news outlets that includes Kansas Reflector. Her areas of coverage include politics and policy, lobbying, elections and campaign finance. Before joining States Newsroom, Ariana covered public health and chemical policy on Capitol Hill for E&E News. As a Florida native, she's worked for the Miami Herald and her hometown paper, the Tampa Bay Times. Her work has also appeared in the Chicago Tribune and NPR. She is a graduate of the University of Florida.

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 […]

Biden’s big social spending bill caught in snags in the Senate

By: - December 16, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden’s giant social and climate spending bill on Thursday night appeared stalled in the U.S. Senate for some time to come, a deep frustration for congressional Democrats who aimed to pass the ambitious package by the Christmas recess. At risk also is a temporary expansion of the child tax credit, the […]

Democratic governors press U.S. Senate to act on voting rights legislation

By: - December 13, 2021

WASHINGTON — Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and 16 other Democratic governors are urging the U.S. Senate to pass two bills that aim to protect voting rights. Both measures need 60 votes to advance under Senate rules but have been stalled by Republican opposition in the evenly divided Senate. “Without decisive action by the federal government […]

Congress gives up on attempt to make women register for the draft after GOP outcry

By: - December 8, 2021

WASHINGTON — A bipartisan provision in an annual defense measure that would have required all young Americans to register for the military draft has been cut following a Republican backlash. Lawmakers tried to include the provision in the $777.9 billion measure, the National Defense Authorization Act of 2022, to require all Americans — including women […]

U.S. House progressives file resolution yanking Boebert committee assignments

By: and - December 8, 2021

WASHINGTON — U.S. House progressives are pushing to strip Rep. Lauren Boebert of her committee assignments after the Colorado Republican suggested Minnesota’s Rep. Ilhan Omar, one of only three Muslims in Congress, was a terrorist. Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., introduced a resolution Wednesday to remove Boebert from the Natural Resources Committee and Budget Committee for […]

House Republicans slam treatment of Jan. 6 defendants held at D.C. jail

By: - December 8, 2021

WASHINGTON — Four House Republicans held a Tuesday press conference to complain about the poor conditions at a District of Columbia jail housing inmates charged with violence in connection with the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol. But a District of Columbia advocate for prison reform in an interview said that jail and another […]

Investigation urged of doctor who operated on immigrant women in detention

By: - December 7, 2021

WASHINGTON — Two congressional panels are calling for Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas to investigate a doctor who was accused of performing gynecological procedures on immigrant women in a Georgia detention center without their consent or full understanding of the treatment being performed. In a Dec. 3 letter, Democrats on the House Homeland Security and Oversight […]

Women would sign up for the military draft under defense bill in Congress

By: - December 5, 2021

WASHINGTON — As the Senate works to finalize a major annual defense measure, there is a bipartisan push to include a requirement that all young Americans — including women — for the first time register for the military draft. The $777.9 billion measure, the National Defense Authorization Act of 2022, also would allocate millions to […]

Protesters rally at Supreme Court as justices hear landmark abortion case

By: - December 1, 2021

WASHINGTON — Lucia Ruta remembers a time when abortions were illegal. A native of Washington, D.C., she says she received an abortion in a back alley when she was 16, in the 1960s.  “The doctor told me that if I made as so much a whimper, he was going to stop and kick me out,” […]

U.S. Supreme Court considers new limits on abortions in Mississippi case

By: and - December 1, 2021

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court is weighing potentially sweeping changes to the right to an abortion, after two hours of arguments Wednesday morning on a Mississippi law that bans most abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy. The court’s conservatives, who hold a 6-3 majority, appeared through their questions to be sympathetic to Mississippi’s arguments that its […]

Immigration protections in Biden’s social policy bill face a new test in the Senate

By: - November 27, 2021

WASHINGTON — Nearly 100 House Democrats are pushing the Senate to expand immigration protections in President Joe Biden’s massive social spending and climate bill, and advocates say that it may be a last opportunity for years to advance any reform. The letter to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York and the chairman of […]

White House imposes travel restrictions for Africa amid new COVID-19 variant

By: - November 26, 2021

WASHINGTON — The White House is set to announce travel restrictions to eight countries in Southern Africa on Monday because of the discovery of a new coronavirus variant, according to senior administration officials. The World Health Organization classified the COVID-19 variant as a “variant of concern” due to its high mutation and transmission rate, and […]