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.

US Supreme Court strikes down use of affirmative action in college admissions

By: and - June 29, 2023

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that two prominent universities’ consideration of race in acceptances violated the U.S. Constitution, effectively reshaping the role of affirmative action in the college admissions process throughout higher education. In a 6-3 decision, Chief Justice John Roberts, writing for the majority, wrote that the admissions processes at […]

US Supreme Court turns down push by states to challenge Biden deportation policy

By: - June 23, 2023

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday overwhelmingly ruled that Texas and Louisiana lacked the legal standing to challenge the Biden administration’s deportation guidelines, granting a win to the White House on immigration policy. The states objected to the White House’s directive to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to prioritize arresting and deporting […]

‘We’re just trying to live our lives’: DACA hits 11-year mark still mired in the courts

By: - June 15, 2023

WASHINGTON — Thursday marks the 11th anniversary of a program that was created during the Obama administration to temporarily protect undocumented children from deportation. But congressional inaction and legal challenges have led to more than a decade of limbo for the 600,000 people enrolled, with no end in sight. They are often called “Dreamers,” based […]

U.S. House Republicans spar with HHS secretary over transgender youth, child labor

By: - June 13, 2023

WASHINGTON — U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra on Tuesday defended access to health care for transgender people, as well as his agency’s actions in connection with unaccompanied migrant children. Republicans at a U.S. House Education and the Workforce Committee hearing grilled Becerra about gender-affirming care for transgender minors, including puberty […]

U.S. House Democrats push for congressional hearing on child labor violations

By: - June 8, 2023

WASHINGTON — Top Democrats on the U.S. House Education and Workforce Committee are urging Republican Chair Virginia Foxx of North Carolina to hold a hearing this month on the uptick in child labor violations. Democratic Reps. Bobby Scott of Virginia, the ranking member of the committee, and Alma Adams of North Carolina, the ranking member […]

White House to name coordinator to push back against book bans, among new LGBTQ protections 

By: - June 8, 2023

WASHINGTON — As part of the celebration of Pride month, the Biden administration on Thursday announced several new protections for LGBTQ+ youth and families, including the position of a federal coordinator to counter the massive wave of book bans across the country. President Joe Biden was scheduled later Thursday to host a Pride event at […]

U.S. House committee approves bills on whole milk, condemns sheltering migrants in schools 

By: - June 6, 2023

WASHINGTON — The U.S. House Education and Workforce Committee on Tuesday passed several bills that are a rebuke of not only the Biden administration’s policies on immigration, child nutrition and health care, but also regulations from the Obama era. The committee passed a resolution that condemns the use of public schools to shelter undocumented people, […]

U.S. Senate votes to block student loan relief, White House will veto

By: - June 1, 2023

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate on Thursday voted to overturn the Biden administration’s one-time student debt relief plan that is on hold due to a pending Supreme Court decision. President Joe Biden has vowed to veto the resolution, but the 52-46 vote forced vulnerable Senate Democrats up for reelection in 2024 to take a public […]

Debt limit deal hits turbulence in Congress as leaders prep for vote

By: and - May 30, 2023

WASHINGTON — Congress began moving the bipartisan debt limit package forward Tuesday, though frustrations with provisions in the bill could make for narrow passage in the U.S. House and U.S. Senate. Conservative Republicans and progressive Democrats both aired their disappointment with the agreement forged over the weekend, but only GOP lawmakers are looking to possibly […]

Biden, McCarthy say they have brokered a debt limit deal to avert U.S. default

By: and - May 27, 2023

WASHINGTON — House Speaker Kevin McCarthy announced a deal in principle Saturday night that would stave off a first-ever default on the nation’s debt as long as it can clear both chambers of Congress before June 5. The agreement would address the nation’s debt limit and include a “historic” reduction in spending, McCarthy said, though […]

Biden student debt relief plan revoked in U.S. House vote

By: - May 24, 2023

WASHINGTON — The U.S. House on Wednesday voted to overturn the Biden administration’s one-time student debt relief plan that is currently on hold awaiting a Supreme Court decision expected within weeks. Before the 218-203 vote on the resolution, the the White House said President Joe Biden would veto it, arguing that the U.S. Department of […]

New bipartisan immigration legislation proposed in U.S. House 

By: - May 23, 2023

WASHINGTON — A bipartisan group of six U.S. House lawmakers on Tuesday described details of proposed legislation that would create a legal pathway for citizenship for undocumented people through work requirements, and would also fund border security measures.  The two Latinas who spearheaded the bill, Reps. Veronica Escobar, a Texas Democrat, and María Elvira Salazar, […]