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.

Girl looking at a book in a library

LGBTQ community, people of color in the crosshairs of banned book movement

By: - April 16, 2022

In the past nine months, hundreds of books across dozens of states are being banned at an alarming rate. A majority of the bans feature books written by authors who are people of color, LGBTQ+, Black and Indigenous, and feature characters from marginalized groups.

handgun and bullet

DOJ rule cracks down untraceable firearms known as ‘ghost guns’

By: - April 12, 2022

Ghost guns are homemade guns that lack a serial number, making it difficult for law enforcement to trace the owner of the weapon if it’s found at a crime scene.

Mobile home park in Sarasota, Florida

‘Sitting on a time bomb’: Mobile home residents at risk in red-hot housing market

By: - April 9, 2022

Mobile home parks provide affordable housing for millions of low-income residents. But in an exploding housing market, that land is increasingly in demand for other projects, or park owners propose major rent hikes or lease changes. Residents have few protections under a patchwork of state laws.

several stacks of books

Civil rights icon Ruby Bridges appears before committee looking into banned books

By: - April 7, 2022

Ruby Bridges, a civil rights icon who was the first Black child to desegregate an all-white New Orleans school, testified before the committee

Migrants at Mexico border

U.S. House Democrats applaud end of Trump-era policy on migrants at the border

By: - April 6, 2022

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said that the so-called Title 42 policy, enacted on public health grounds at the beginning of the pandemic, will end on May 23. 

Tulane students on campus

Pause on federal student loan repayments extended by Biden through Aug. 31

By: - April 6, 2022

The Biden administration Wednesday announced its plans to extend the pause on federal student loan repayments until the end of August.

U.S. Immigration asylum documents

Biden administration to halt pandemic policy blocking migrants who claim asylum

By: - April 1, 2022

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Friday the government will terminate a Trump-era policy that prevented migrants from claiming asylum during a health crisis, including the coronavirus pandemic.

Raphael Warnock at an Atlanta pharmacy

Insulin price cap approved by U.S. House as Georgia’s Warnock pushes for Senate passage

By: - March 31, 2022

The U.S. House on Thursday passed a bill on a bipartisan 232-193 vote that would limit the price of insulin, as congressional Democrats met throughout the day with health care advocates to make their case for the proposal. 

Biden signs law named for Emmett Till that makes lynching a federal hate crime

By: - March 29, 2022

Nearly 70 years after 14-year-old Emmett Till was kidnapped and murdered in Mississippi by two white men, President Joe Biden signed into law on Tuesday a bill to make lynching a federal hate crime.

Louisiana enacts new law to protect police whistleblowers

Biden lays out a ‘fund the police’ budget plan

By: - March 28, 2022

President Joe Biden’s budget request to Congress unveiled Monday asks for $30 billion for state and local governments to add more police officers across the nation. 

Migrants at border crossing

New process for asylum cases at the border unveiled by Biden administration

By: - March 24, 2022

The Biden administration announced Thursday steps to expedite asylum cases at the U.S.-Mexico border in an attempt to resolve a years-long backlog, but policy advocates worry the streamlined process could prevent asylum seekers from obtaining legal representation if their cases are denied.

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson

GOP senators attack and interrupt in final day of questioning U.S. Supreme Court nominee

By: - March 23, 2022

Republicans grilled Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson with questions she had already answered about seven cases — out of hundreds she handled as a federal district court judge.