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.

DACA advocates rally in front of U.S. Supreme Court

Lengthy timeline for DACA legal fight puts lives on hold for years

By: - January 30, 2023

WASHINGTON — Karen Judith Briseno Ortiz mailed in her application for a program meant to protect undocumented children from deportation, one day after her twin sister’s application. Her sister was accepted into the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, but Briseno Ortiz, who grew up in Dallas, was not. Now her application is in limbo […]

U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., speaks at a press conference

Democrats in Congress condemn Biden administration expansion of Title 42

By: - January 26, 2023

WASHINGTON — Nearly 80 Democratic members of Congress sent a letter to the White House expressing their “great concern” that the Biden administration is walking back on its promise to restore migrants’ access to asylum. In the letter, they also condemned the administration’s expansion of a controversial policy that immediately turns away migrants at the […]

People gather at a candlelight vigil for victims of a deadly mass shooting

Wave of mass shootings prompts Biden to call yet again for assault weapons ban

By: - January 24, 2023

WASHINGTON — Following a mass shooting on the eve of Lunar New Year in which 11 people in a predominantly Asian neighborhood in California were killed, President Joe Biden again urged Congress to pass legislation banning assault weapons. Communities across America “have been struck by tragedy after tragedy, including mass shootings from Colorado Springs to […]

TikTok app is displayed on an Apple iPhone

Members of Congress sign up for TikTok, despite security concerns

By: - January 19, 2023

WASHINGTON — Just like teens, members of Congress are setting up TikTok accounts — even as the popular app is increasingly barred from government devices and heads of federal intelligence agencies raise concerns about data collection and surveillance obtained by a Chinese-owned company.  At least 32 members of Congress — all Democrats and one independent […]

Volunteers build fresh food resources in an Iowa food desert

U.S. House agriculture leaders discuss anti-hunger measures in upcoming farm bill

By: - January 18, 2023

WASHINGTON — The new Republican chairman of the U.S. House Agriculture Committee and a top Democrat on the panel on Wednesday laid out anti-hunger initiatives Congress could tackle in the upcoming farm bill. During a panel discussion, Rep. Glenn “GT” Thompson of Pennsylvania, the new head of the Agriculture Committee, said he believes members of […]

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris meet with Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander civil rights leaders

Days after Indiana attack, White House vows to fight hate against Asian Americans

By: - January 17, 2023

WASHINGTON— The White House on Tuesday announced a multi-agency strategy to help combat anti-Asian American hate, promote language access and improve governmental data collection for the Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander community. “This unprecedented plan builds on the administration’s broader equity agenda,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said during Tuesday’s press briefing. […]

U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona

New federal student loan repayment plan aimed at low-income borrowers

By: - January 10, 2023

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Education unveiled a proposal Tuesday that would overhaul a federal student loan income-driven repayment plan, and, if implemented, could help millions of low-income borrowers. However, it’s unclear how the agency would be able to finance the program. Many student debt relief advocates also criticized the proposal for leaving out […]

Biden honors more than a dozen Americans for upholding democracy on Jan. 6

By: - January 6, 2023

WASHINGTON — On the second anniversary of the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, President Joe Biden on Friday awarded citizen medals to 14 Americans who protected democracy and law enforcement officers who defended the Capitol. “Two years ago on Jan. 6 our democracy was attacked,” Biden said at the White House. “Our democracy held because […]

President Biden Delivers Remarks On Border Security

Biden administration to rapidly expel more migrants at the border, add legal pathways

By: and - January 5, 2023

WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden on Thursday announced dual immigration strategies that would increase expulsions of migrants who attempt to cross the Southern border, while also expanding opportunities for migrants from several countries to legally enter the United States. But the sweeping new immigration plan brought condemnation from advocates who said he should not broaden […]

U.S. Rep. Chrissy Houlahan, D-Penn.

D.C. nears Jan. 6 anniversary with warnings about extremism, awards for courage

By: - January 5, 2023

WASHINGTON – On the eve of the second anniversary of the U.S. Capitol insurrection, congressional Democrats and dozens of veterans on Thursday in a press conference called on incoming House Republican leaders to condemn political violence and hold their members who supported the attack accountable for their actions. Meanwhile, President Joe Biden is scheduled on […]

U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris swears in Sen. Chuck Schumer,

U.S. Senate opens a new session with a record set by McConnell

By: - January 3, 2023

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer welcomed reelected and newly elected senators Tuesday afternoon to a new session of Congress, highlighting the bipartisan success of the previous two years and outlining his optimism for a continued approach.    “There’s no reason why the success of the last two years needs to end today,” Schumer, […]

Sen. Kirsten Sinema, D-Arizona,

U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona leaves Democratic Party, registers as independent

By: and - December 9, 2022

WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona announced Friday she is leaving the Democratic Party and has registered as an independent. The first-term senator wrote in an opinion piece for the Arizona Republic that she does not intend to change the way she legislates or casts votes, but plans to be “an independent voice […]