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.

Democratic governors ask Congress for immigration aid to reverse years of ‘inaction’

By: - January 23, 2024

WASHINGTON — Nine Democratic governors sent a letter to President Joe Biden and congressional leaders Monday, requesting federal aid and urging changes to immigration law as their states take in an overwhelming number of asylum seekers. “The sustained arrival of individuals seeking asylum and requiring shelter and assistance, due to lack of Congressional action on […]

Biden says he’s ‘ready to act’ on ‘significant’ changes at the border, including asylum

By: - January 19, 2024

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden on Friday said he backs “significant policy changes” to asylum law, amid ongoing immigration policy negotiations between the White House and Senate tied to passage of a global security package. “I believe we need significant policy changes at the border, including changes in our asylum system, to ensure that we […]

U.S. House Republicans move ahead with drive to impeach Mayorkas over immigration policy 

By: - January 18, 2024

WASHINGTON — U.S. House Republicans Thursday held a second hearing on the impeachment of Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, even as Mayorkas works to reach a deal on changes in immigration law with a group of senators. Republicans on the Homeland Security Committee argued that Mayorkas has not upheld his oath of office because […]

With GOP pushing hard on immigration, parole emerges as a make-or-break issue in Congress

By: - January 17, 2024

WASHINGTON — Passage of a multibillion-dollar supplemental package hinges on curbing an executive authority used to grant immigration protection, South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham said during a Wednesday press conference. “If we don’t fix parole, there will be no deal,” Graham said alongside Senate Republican Whip John Thune of South Dakota. Graham said parole is […]

Grassley undergoing hospital treatment for infection, in ‘good spirits’

By: - January 16, 2024

WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa is receiving treatment at a hospital for an infection, according to his office. “Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) is receiving antibiotic infusions at an area hospital to treat an infection,” said a statement from his office with a Washington dateline. “He is in good spirits and will return […]

Biden announces plan to cancel some student loan balances under $12,000

By: - January 12, 2024

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden announced Friday that some federal student loan borrowers will have their loans cancelled under the Department of Education’s new repayment plan. Starting next month, people who took out under $12,000 in federal student loans and have been repaying those loans for 10 years will get their remaining student loan balance […]

U.S. House impeachment proceedings against Mayorkas over immigration feature state AGs

By: - January 10, 2024

WASHINGTON — U.S. House Republicans began their impeachment proceedings against Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas with a Wednesday hearing, a move Democrats called politically motivated. The House Committee on Homeland Security hearing aimed to set the stage for Mayorkas’ impeachment, with Republicans arguing that the Biden administration appointee has failed to fulfill his […]

Immigration negotiations in Congress center on parole, asylum policy

By: - January 9, 2024

WASHINGTON —  A deal on changes to immigration policy remained elusive Tuesday for top U.S. Senate negotiators. Those leading the talks — Sens. James Lankford, Republican of Oklahoma, Chris Murphy, Democrat of Connecticut and Kyrsten Sinema, independent of Arizona — have worked for weeks to strike a deal between the White House and Senate Republicans […]

White House unveils $1 billion for electric and low-emission school buses

By: - January 8, 2024

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration announced Monday $1 billion in funding for more than 2,700 electric and low-emission school buses across 37 states. This is a second part of funding of a $5 billion, five-year initiative from the bipartisan infrastructure law. In total, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean School Bus Program has awarded nearly […]

Fight for congressional majorities launches against backdrop of presidential campaigns

By: and - January 5, 2024

WASHINGTON — The 2024 battle for control of Congress is underway in the states, accompanying the accelerating race for the presidency. Republicans are preparing to funnel money and staff into a select few Senate races in an effort to flip that chamber back to their control, while Democrats are looking toward the districts President Joe […]

U.S. House speaker leads GOP lawmakers to the border to slam Biden on immigration

By: - January 3, 2024

WASHINGTON — U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson led a delegation of House Republicans on a Wednesday trip to the U.S.-Mexico border to demand hard-line immigration proposals in exchange for passage of President Joe Biden’s emergency global security supplemental request. “If President Biden wants a supplemental spending bill focused on national security, it better begin by […]

Biden to speak at South Carolina church where Black worshippers were murdered

By: - January 3, 2024

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden, as his 2024 campaign gets underway, will visit a historic church in South Carolina where Black churchgoers were murdered by a white supremacist in 2015, to give a speech about the dangers of political violence and to make the case for his reelection this November. “The choice for the American […]