DC BUREAU

Our Washington, D.C., bureau reports on congressional delegations and key Supreme Court and administrative decisions that affect our state.

STAFF

Jane Norman

DC Bureau Chief

Jane directs national coverage, managing staff and freelance reporters in the nation’s capital and assigning and editing state-specific daily and enterprise stories.

Laura Olson

DC Bureau Senior Reporter

Laura covers the nation's capital as a senior reporter for States Newsroom. Her areas of coverage include politics and policy, lobbying, elections, and campaign finance.

Ariana Figueroa

DC Bureau Reporter

Ariana covers the nation's capital for States Newsroom. Her areas of coverage include politics and policy, lobbying, elections and campaign finance.

STORIES

Merrick Garland at a lectern with American flags in the background

GOP lawmakers push back against federal probe into threats against school board members

BY: - October 8, 2021

WASHINGTON – Congressional Republicans on Thursday objected to a move by the Justice Department to investigate violent threats made against local school board members and teachers, arguing that the federal agency is “policing the speech of citizens and concerned parents.” “Violence and true threats of violence should have no place in our civic discourse, but […]

A teacher writes on a white board

Democrats’ vision for free community college would boost undocumented students

BY: - October 4, 2021

WASHINGTON – The massive economic policy package Democrats are trying to muscle through Congress could open the door to free community college for undocumented immigrants. But that lifeline for many people now denied access to higher education could also reignite controversies in Republican-leaning states over immigration and federal overreach.  The provision on immigrants was included […]

An empty preschool desk

Congress has a plan for universal pre-K. Will states opt in?

BY: - October 4, 2021

WASHINGTON – Nearly a fifth of President Joe Biden’s $3.5 trillion sweeping social spending package is dedicated to providing low-cost care for children from birth to kindergarten – investments that would benefit single parents and low-income families. But how the states implement their programs for pre-K for 3-and 4-year-olds – or whether they even decide […]

President Joe Biden walks down a hallway

Why there’s such an impasse in Congress: Some questions and answers

BY: and - October 1, 2021

WASHINGTON – Congress may have kept the federal government operating with an 11th-hour flurry of votes on Thursday, but several key pieces of the Democratic agenda remain in limbo. Here are some questions and answers on where negotiations stand with two massive Democratic-drafted bills — and the status of other looming challenges for federal lawmakers:  […]

An American flag sticking out of a pile of paper money

Congress passes bill to prevent government shutdown, send out $28.6B in disaster aid

BY: - September 30, 2021

WASHINGTON – Congress made a last-minute dash to avert a government shutdown on Thursday, with the U.S. Senate and House approving a short-term spending bill just hours ahead of a midnight deadline. Every Democratic and independent senator and 15 Republicans supported the bill in the 65-35 vote. The GOP senators in the “aye” tally included […]

The Capitol building against a blue sky

Senate GOP torpedoes U.S. government funding bill, raising odds of federal fiscal crises

BY: - September 28, 2021

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Republicans blocked an attempt by Democrats on Monday evening to begin debate on a broad bill that would avert multiple looming fiscal crises for the federal government. The measure to briefly keep the government operating past the end of the fiscal year on Thursday, as well as to increase the borrowing […]

Joe Biden

Biden administration rolls out new rule to bolster DACA as lawsuit continues

BY: - September 27, 2021

WASHINGTON – The Biden administration on Monday unveiled a proposed new rule that would strengthen the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program to protect undocumented people in the program from legal challenges.  The proposed rule, announced by the Department of Homeland Security, would “preserve and fortify” the DACA program, an Obama administration-era initiative that protects […]

A "Stop the Steal" sign

Georgia official attacked by Trump decries ‘huge disinformation campaign’ over 2020 election

BY: - September 26, 2021

WASHINGTON – Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, a Republican who took the brunt of former President Donald Trump’s attacks over Georgia’s 2020 election results, said during a Friday virtual panel that he hopes election disinformation starts to dissipate. “People weren’t questioning the (election) process before, but there was a huge disinformation campaign which really […]

A medical worker holds vaccine vials

Who will get a booster shot? A Q&A about what the feds are saying

BY: - September 23, 2021

This story was updated on Sept. 24 at 8:30 a.m. with new information about booster shot recommendations. WASHINGTON – Booster shots soon will begin rolling out to some Americans who received the two-shot vaccine made by Pfizer – after a contentious and confusing federal approval process that isn’t over yet. Determining who exactly should be […]

The U.S. Capitol at night

U.S. House Dems propose $28.6B in disaster aid for recovery from hurricanes, wildfires, floods

BY: - September 21, 2021

WASHINGTON – Congressional Democrats unveiled a short-term spending measure on Tuesday that would keep the federal government operating through Dec. 3 and provide $28.6 billion for costs related to recent natural disasters.  That disaster relief money is slightly more than the $24 billion that the Biden administration asked Congress to approve for extreme weather events […]

Exterior of the U.S. Supreme Court

U.S. Supreme Court schedules Dec. 1 oral arguments in major abortion case

BY: - September 20, 2021

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on Dec. 1 in a case that threatens to overturn decades of abortion protections established under the landmark 1973 ruling in Roe v. Wade. The upcoming case, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, stems from a Mississippi law that bans most abortions after 15 weeks. […]

Gray Pfizer sign on company headquarters in New York City.

FDA panel backs COVID-19 booster shots only for elderly and high-risk Americans

BY: - September 17, 2021

WASHINGTON – A federal health advisory panel wrestled Friday with whether to widely authorize a booster dose of Pfizer’s two-shot COVID-19 vaccine for most Americans, ultimately recommending that a third dose be offered only to older or higher-risk individuals.   The Biden administration had hoped that states could begin rolling out a wide national booster shot […]