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

State Sen. Katrina Robinson, D-Memphis, hugs Nashville activist Justin Jones at the Tennessee General Assembly in April. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Case against Sen. Katrina Robinson hits snag

BY: - September 24, 2021

In Memphis Thursday, federal Judge Sheryl Lipman debated with prosecutors the merits of the federal government’s fraud case against state Sen. Katrina Robinson. Lipman dismissed the jury immediately after prosecutors rested their case.  Robinson’s attorneys asked the judge to dismiss all charges, citing lack of evidence and fundamental flaws in the prosecution’s financial analysis. The […]

London Moore, 6, at of Historic First Community Church in Nashville. (Photo by John Partipilo)

Orphaned, infected, in crisis: How the pandemic is traumatizing kids

BY: - September 22, 2021

WASHINGTON — The coronavirus pandemic has brought heartbreaking consequences for millions of U.S. children, even as most avoided serious illness themselves, pediatric experts told Congress on Wednesday. Take, for instance, a young girl from Tennessee named Sophia, whose story was relayed by Dr. Margaret Rush, president of Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt University. Within […]

WAVERLY, TN - AUGUST 23: A partially submerged Ford F-150 sits in Trace Creek on August 23, 2021 in Waverly, Tennessee. Heavy rains on Sunday caused flash flooding in the area, leaving at least 22 people dead and several more still missing. (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)

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 […]

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 11: U.S. President Joe Biden arrives to give a primetime address to the nation from the East Room of the White House March 11, 2021 in Washington, DC. President Biden gave the address to mark the one-year anniversary of the shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

COVID-19 vaccines or weekly tests to be mandated for millions of U.S. workers

BY: - September 9, 2021

WASHINGTON — More than 80 million employees of private businesses in the U.S. will be required to get vaccinated against COVID-19 or undergo weekly testing as part of the Biden administration’s latest strategy for combating the still-surging coronavirus pandemic. The upcoming vaccine rule for companies with at least 100 employees is one plank of an […]

U.S. Capitol. Photo by Russ Rohde/Getty Images

House Democrats kick off reconciliation process with $30 billion Interior bill

BY: - September 2, 2021

The House Natural Resources Committee on Thursday inched toward approval of a $30 billion bill to fund climate, tribal and environmental programs. Thursday’s meeting marked the first time a congressional committee considered any piece of Democrats’ $3.5 trillion spending plan meant to fundamentally change U.S. health, climate, education and tax policy. Democrats plan to move […]

In December, a group of parents rallied in Nashville to get their kids back in the classroom. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Biden administration launches civil rights investigations of GOP-led states banning school masks

BY: - August 30, 2021

WASHINGTON — Federal education officials have launched civil rights investigations in five Republican-led states that have prohibited school districts from mandating mask-wearing, saying those policies could amount to illegal discrimination against students with disabilities. The Biden administration notified the education chiefs in Iowa, Tennessee, South Carolina, Utah and Oklahoma of the investigations through formal letters Monday.   […]

U.S. Capitol. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

U.S. Senate OKs $1.2T bipartisan infrastructure bill

BY: - August 10, 2021

The U.S. Senate passed 69-30 on Tuesday a sweeping bipartisan $1.2 trillion infrastructure package, a milestone for one of President Joe Biden’s priorities after months of negotiation. Biden proposed an infrastructure plan in March that would have topped $2 trillion. A bipartisan group of senators led by Rob Portman, (R-Ohio), and Kyrsten Sinema, (D-Ariz.), worked […]

(Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

U.S. Senate agrees to move ahead on $550B in new infrastructure spending

BY: - July 29, 2021

WASHINGTON — A bipartisan group of U.S. senators say they have worked through the sticking points on a major infrastructure package, and the Senate agreed on a procedural vote on Wednesday night to advance to debate on the proposal. That announcement came a week after Republicans blocked a test vote on the deal, with GOP […]

(Photo: Getty Images)

CDC says the vaccinated should wear masks indoors in areas with high infection rates

BY: - July 27, 2021

WASHINGTON — Federal health officials on Tuesday urged Americans in areas of the country with the highest surges in COVID-19 infections to once again wear masks when they are in public, indoor settings — even if they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The updated recommendations marked a sharp shift from the agency’s guidance in May that […]

Women march on the Capitol on July 19, 2021 calling for more protections for voting rights. The march was coordinated by the Poor People's Campaign (Photo by Ariana Figueroa | States Newsroom).

‘Our democracy is in peril’: Women risk arrest in voting rights protest in D.C.

BY: - July 19, 2021

WASHINGTON—Diane Howard of Cleveland traveled to the nation’s capital with hundreds of other women to urge Congress to pass an elections overhaul and undo new state laws that restrict voting access. A community activist for half a century, Howard said that this is not the first time she’s seen voting rights under attack. “What we […]

Bishop William Barber, co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign, is calling on Congress to end the Senate filibuster and pass voting rights legislation. Alex Wong/Getty Images

Anti-poverty advocates urge Congress to act on voting rights, minimum wage, filibuster

BY: - July 12, 2021

WASHINGTON—The Poor People’s Campaign announced on Monday the beginning of a weeks-long push calling on Congress to end the Senate filibuster and pass voting rights legislation. The anti-poverty campaign, “A Season of Nonviolent Moral Direct Action,” will run each Monday until Aug. 2. Advocates are urging Congress to enact the sweeping “For the People Act,” […]

(Getty Images)

U.S. House backs select committee to probe Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol

BY: - June 30, 2021

WASHINGTON—The U.S. House voted Wednesday to establish a select committee to investigate the Jan. 6 insurrection, in which a mob of pro-Trump supporters attacked the U.S. Capitol. In a 222-190 vote that was almost entirely party-line, just two Republicans joined Democrats in passing the resolution, which calls for a probe into “one of the darkest […]