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.

Jennifer Shutt

DC Bureau Senior Reporter

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.

Jacob Fischler

DC Bureau Senior Reporter

Jacob covers federal policy as a senior reporter for States Newsroom. Based in Oregon, he focuses on Western issues. His coverage areas include climate, energy development, public lands and infrastructure.

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

Reports: Supreme Court Justice Breyer to step down

BY: , and - January 26, 2022

WASHINGTON — U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer is planning to announce his retirement in the coming days, according to multiple press reports Wednesday. The decision by the 83-year-old justice, who was nominated by President Bill Clinton in 1994, would give President Joe Biden his first chance to nominate a member of the Supreme Court, […]

Biden administration drops vaccine-or-test workplace rule

BY: - January 25, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration announced Tuesday it will withdraw an emergency mandate that would have required employees at large businesses to get the COVID-19 vaccine or test regularly for the virus. The decision from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, which will take effect Wednesday, follows a ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court earlier […]

States weigh how to shield election officials from threats, harassment

BY: - January 25, 2022

Following the turmoil of the 2020 election, a photo of Washington state Election Director Lori Augino marked with crosshairs, her address, and the words “your days are numbered” was posted on a website alongside photos of numerous other state election officials described as “enemies of the people.”   Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman said in […]

With voting rights stalled, some senators mull an update to the Electoral Count Act

BY: - January 21, 2022

WASHINGTON — A bipartisan group of senators is exploring legislation to overhaul how Congress counts Electoral College votes, but backers of stalled voting rights legislation are lukewarm on the effort as a substitute. The Electoral Count Act is an obscure law that has come under recent scrutiny, a year after the Jan. 6 attack on […]

Biden says ‘big chunks’ of his spending bill could still succeed, including climate plan

BY: - January 20, 2022

President Joe Biden said Wednesday the climate and child care provisions in his domestic spending agenda could still become law this year, even as the larger plan has stalled in the Senate over other items that Biden conceded may not pass — such as an expanded child tax credit. In a nearly two-hour news conference, […]

Sinema joins Republicans to block a change in the filibuster for voting rights bills

BY: - January 20, 2022

WASHINGTON — Every Republican in the U.S. Senate and two Democrats on Wednesday night rejected a proposed change in the filibuster to pass voting rights legislation, dealing a major blow to attempts in Congress to counter restrictive voting laws passed in the states. In a 48-52 vote, two Democrats — Sens. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona […]

Legislatures across country back off pandemic protocols

BY: - January 19, 2022

As Dr. Jennifer Bacani McKenney walked the halls of the Kansas Statehouse on opening day of the legislative session this month, she was taken aback by what she saw. In the hallways, where “people are chatting and hugging and all that stuff, there were probably less than half of the people wearing masks … You […]

Forest Service in ‘paradigm shift’ to use logging, controlled burns to prevent wildfires

BY: - January 18, 2022

The Biden administration will use $3 billion from last year’s infrastructure law to revamp the federal approach to wildfire management, introducing a 10-year plan to deal with the large swaths of the West scientists consider most at risk of destructive blazes. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, a former Iowa governor, announced the new strategy in Phoenix, […]

covid-19 test kit binax

Online orders for free at-home COVID tests to begin Jan. 19

BY: - January 17, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration on Friday launched a new website for Americans to request up to four free COVID-19 tests per household. The administration is buying 1 billion at-home rapid COVID-19 tests, and Americans will be able to begin ordering the tests online on Jan. 19 at COVIDtests.gov. This is part of the administration’s effort […]

Seven states to watch in the 2022 push to restrict voting rights

BY: - January 14, 2022

WASHINGTON — Republican state lawmakers across the country are ramping up their drive to enact voting and election-related laws in time for crucial 2022 midterm elections. As federal legislation that would limit state-level voting restrictions appears stymied in Washington, Republicans in the states are moving forward with new proposals and revisiting old ones that Democrats […]

Supreme Court blocks Biden workplace vaccine rule, allows health care workers mandate

BY: - January 13, 2022

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday dealt a blow to the Biden administration’s fight against the pandemic, blocking a federal mandate that workers be vaccinated or regularly tested for COVID-19 — though the court allowed a separate rule requiring vaccinations for some health care workers. The two rulings represented a split victory for Republican attorneys […]

Federal prosecutors file seditious conspiracy charges against Oath Keepers in Jan. 6 attack

BY: - January 13, 2022

WASHINGTON — Stewart Rhodes, the founder of the far-right militia group the Oath Keepers, was charged with seditious conspiracy in organizing an attack on the U.S. Capitol and disrupting the Electoral College certification of the president, the Justice Department announced Thursday.  Edward Vallejo, 63, of Phoenix is charged along with Rhodes in connection with events […]