Author

Jennifer Shutt

Jennifer Shutt

Jennifer covers the nation’s capital as a senior reporter for States Newsroom. Her coverage areas include congressional policy, politics and legal challenges with a focus on health care, unemployment, housing and aid to families.

Biden to pardon all federal offenses for simple marijuana possession, review criminalization

By: , and - October 6, 2022

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden on Thursday announced executive actions that would pardon thousands of people with prior federal offenses of simple marijuana possession. Biden then called on governors to follow suit with state offenses for simple marijuana possession, saying that “just as no one should be in a Federal prison solely due to the […]

Stopgap spending bill advances in U.S. Senate after Manchin pulls his energy plan

By: - September 27, 2022

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate advanced a catchall spending package Tuesday that would provide billions to aid Ukraine’s war effort, help communities throughout the country recover from natural disasters and keep the federal government funded through mid-December.  Democrats and Republicans voted 72-23 to move the measure toward a final vote later this week—a success that […]

Republicans in Congress say they’d keep federal abortion funding in cases of rape, incest

By: - September 27, 2022

WASHINGTON —  A nearly 50-year-old federal law backed by Republicans allows the use of federal dollars for abortions in cases of rape, incest or the life of the pregnant person. That so-called Hyde Amendment, which is folded into spending bills, is less stringent than new or planned abortion bans in some GOP-led states, where governors […]

U.S. House GOP outlines agenda in bid for control in the midterms

By: - September 23, 2022

WASHINGTON — U.S. House Republicans gathered inside a warehouse in Southwestern Pennsylvania on Friday to outline the legislation they’d try to enact if voters give them back control of that chamber following the November midterm elections.  Speaking from an HVAC factory in Monongahela, about an hour south of Pittsburgh, House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy said […]

Marjorie Taylor Greene leads GOP drive to criminalize gender-affirming care for transgender youth

By: - September 21, 2022

WASHINGTON — Conservative Republicans gathered outside the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday to commit to bringing legislation to the floor that would make it a felony to perform gender-affirming care on transgender youth, should the GOP take control of the U.S. House following the November midterm elections.  “How on earth can this be happening in America? […]

U.S. Senate delays same-sex marriage vote until after midterm elections

By: - September 15, 2022

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate won’t vote on legislation to secure marriage equality for millions of Americans until after the midterm elections, bipartisan negotiators announced Thursday.  The move follows weeks of behind-the-scenes discussions among five U.S. senators from both political parties who have been drafting an amendment to the House-passed legislation that they hoped would […]

Lindsey Graham wants a national abortion ban, but U.S. Senate Republicans are wary of backing his plan

By: - September 13, 2022

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senate Republicans are skeptical about a 15-week nationwide abortion ban that GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham introduced Tuesday, with some saying they want to leave the issue to state lawmakers instead of taking it up in Congress.  “I think most of the members of my conference prefer that this be dealt with at […]

GOP balks at White House request for billions for public health, natural disasters, Ukraine

By: - September 9, 2022

WASHINGTON — Republicans in Congress are lukewarm about providing $47 billion in new emergency spending for the ongoing Ukrainian war against Russia’s invasion, COVID-19 and monkeypox public health campaigns, and to help states recover from natural disasters.  GOP senators, who have returned to Washington after Congress’ summer break, aren’t so sure the Biden administration’s request […]

Department of Veterans Affairs

New fight opens in Congress over VA policy that sidesteps state abortion bans

By: - September 9, 2022

WASHINGTON — Democrats in the U.S. Senate are confident the Department of Veterans Affairs can implement a new policy that allows its doctors to provide abortions when the pregnancy threatens the patient’s life or health, or when it’s the result of rape or incest.  The VA announced the new policy last week to cheers from […]

Bill codifying same-sex marriage nears critical vote in U.S. Senate

By: - September 9, 2022

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate is on track to vote on a bill codifying marriage equality as soon as next week with negotiators increasingly confident it could become law.  Wisconsin Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin and Maine GOP Sen. Susan Collins said Wednesday they’re close to getting at least 10 Republicans to back the same-sex marriage […]

COVID-19 vaccine may become annual, like flu shot

By: - September 6, 2022

WASHINGTON — COVID-19 boosters shots are on track to become as frequent as the annual flu shot, though high-risk people may need more than one dose per year, Biden administration officials said Tuesday.  “For a large majority of Americans, we are moving to a point where a single annual COVID shot should provide a high […]

Court releases partially redacted affidavit for Mar-a-Lago search

By: - August 26, 2022

WASHINGTON — A judge granted the Federal Bureau of Investigation a search warrant for former President Donald Trump’s home earlier this month after agents found 184 documents with classified markings had been kept at Mar-a-Lago. The property — which hosts Trump’s private residence, a golf club and other housing — is not authorized to store […]