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.

President Joe Biden walks to the Oval Office Dining Room with Biden family dog Commander on March 4, 2022. (Official White House photo by Adam Schultz)

DOJ rule cracks down untraceable firearms known as ‘ghost guns’

By: - April 11, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden Monday unveiled the Department of Justice’s plan to regulate untraceable firearms known as ghost guns, as well as announced his nominee to lead the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The Department of Justice’s final rule bans the business of manufacturing ghost guns, such as “buy build shoot” kits […]

Mobile home parks provide affordable housing for millions of low-income residents — including seniors on fixed incomes. (Getty Images)

‘Sitting on a time bomb’: Mobile home residents at risk in red-hot housing market

By: - April 10, 2022

WASHINGTON — Jon Zang walks his dog several times a day in his mobile home community in West Goshen Township, Pennsylvania. It’s quiet, as most of his neighbors are at work. But he often wonders how many more walks he and his bulldog mix, Ladybug, will have down the streets of the place he’s called […]

Toni Morrison's "The Bluest Eye" was among more than two dozen books removed last month from a school library at Goddard following a challenge by a parent. The books have since been returned to the shelves. (Max McCoy/Kansas Reflector)

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

By: - April 9, 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, […]

U.S. House Democrats applaud end of Trump-era policy on migrants at the border

By: - April 7, 2022

WASHINGTON — Democrats at a U.S. House Homeland Security panel hearing on Wednesday praised the end of a Trump-era policy that turned away migrants pleading for asylum at the border. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said that the so-called Title 42 policy, enacted on public health grounds at the beginning of the […]

President Joe Biden participates in a roundtable discussion Feb. 22, 2022, in the South Court Auditorium in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building at the White House. (Official White House photo by Adam Schultz)

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 3, 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 […]

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

By: - March 29, 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 28, 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 […]

New process for asylum cases at the border unveiled by Biden administration

By: - March 26, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration announced Thursday steps to expedite asylum cases at the U.S.-Mexico border in an attempt to resolve a years-long backlog, but policy advocates worry the streamlined process could prevent asylum seekers from obtaining legal representation if their cases are denied. “If somebody is not approved in the first instance, they’re going […]

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

By: - March 23, 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 about […]

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 […]