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

U.S. attorney general defends FBI probe of threats against school board members

BY: - October 28, 2021

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senate Republicans grilled Attorney General Merrick Garland for more than four hours on Wednesday about a Justice Department investigation into threats made to local school board members in multiple states. Garland at the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing declined to revoke a memo he wrote asking the FBI to meet with local law enforcement to […]

FDA panel recommends OK for Pfizer’s vaccine for elementary school-aged children

BY: - October 26, 2021

WASHINGTON — A federal vaccine advisory panel on Tuesday recommended authorizing Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5 to 11, a decision that means as soon as next week everyone in the U.S. over age 5 is expected to be eligible for a shot. The vote by the Food and Drug Administration panel, with 17 […]

National school boards group apologizes for requesting probe of threats against local officials

BY: - October 26, 2021

WASHINGTON — The National School Boards Association is walking back its letter to President Joe Biden asking for federal help for school board members who have been harassed and threatened over masking requirements and discussions of race in public schools. The shift came after Republican members of Congress led by Iowa Sen. Charles Grassley raised strong objections […]

U.S. Senate Republicans again block debate on voting rights legislation

BY: - October 20, 2021

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senate Republicans blocked the advance of voting rights legislation Wednesday, the second time this year—thwarting again Democrats’ attempts to pass federal protections for voters amid a slew of new state elections laws. “When we are faced with a coordinated effort across our country to limit the freedom to vote, we must stand up […]

Booster shot of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine recommended by FDA panel

BY: - October 15, 2021

WASHINGTON — A federal vaccine advisory panel on Friday endorsed a second dose of Johnson & Johnson’s one-shot COVID-19 vaccine, meaning millions more Americans are expected to soon join the line for booster shots. Anyone who received a J&J shot at least two months ago will be eligible for an additional dose, under the committee’s […]

FDA panel recommends booster shot of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine

BY: - October 14, 2021

WASHINGTON — Millions of Americans who received Moderna’s two-shot COVID-19 vaccine are expected to be eligible soon for booster shots, after a federal advisory panel on Thursday recommended a third dose for older and higher-risk adults as well as certain workers. The unanimous recommendation from the Food and Drug Administration vaccine panel came a few […]

Georgia U.S. attorney quit after Trump pressure to reject election results, new report confirms

BY: - October 8, 2021

Former President Donald Trump forced a top federal prosecutor in Atlanta to step down because he wouldn’t help Trump overturn his loss of Georgia in the 2020 presidential election, a U.S. Senate report released Thursday said. The report, written by Senate Judiciary Committee Democrats, found that the U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Georgia, Byung […]

Misinformation abounds as U.S. House panel questions Arizona’s presidential election ‘audit’

BY: - October 7, 2021

WASHINGTON — It didn’t take long for Thursday’s congressional hearing about a controversial ballot review in Arizona to demonstrate the persistent misinformation about the validity of last year’s presidential election. Rep. Jamie Raskin, a Maryland Democrat, asked his colleague, Arizona Republican Andy Biggs, if he accepts the findings of the GOP-led review of ballots in Maricopa […]

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

BY: - October 7, 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 […]

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

BY: - October 4, 2021

WASHINGTON — Nearly one 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 to accept the cash, […]

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

BY: and - October 3, 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: President Joe […]

Democrats’ vision for free community college would boost undocumented students

BY: - October 3, 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 in a plan drafted […]