States pass their own virus aid, not waiting on Washington

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — States are not willing to wait for more federal help and have been moving ahead with their own coronavirus relief packages. Maryland and California recently approved help for small businesses, the poor, the jobless and those needing child care. New Mexico and Pennsylvania are funneling grants directly to cash-starved businesses. The…

Judge bans enforcement of Biden’s 100-day deportation pause

HOUSTON (AP) — A federal judge has indefinitely banned President Joe Biden’s administration from enforcing a 100-day moratorium on most deportations. U.S. District Judge Drew Tipton late Tuesday issued a preliminary injunction sought by Texas, which argued the moratorium violated federal law and risked imposing additional costs on the state. Biden proposed the 100-day pause…

Biden Mourns 500,000 Dead, Balancing Nation’s Grief and Hope

WASHINGTON (AP) — With sunset remarks and a national moment of silence, President Joe Biden has offered a head-on acknowledgement of the country’s once-unimaginable loss — half a million Americans in the COVID-19 pandemic. Biden addressed what he called a “grim, heartbreaking milestone” directly and publicly, speaking from a lectern in the White House Cross…

Garland says Justice Dept. must be politically independent

WASHINGTON (AP) — Merrick Garland, President Joe Biden’s nominee for attorney general, vowed on Monday to prioritize civil rights, combat extremist attacks and ensure the Justice Department remains politically independent. Garland appeared Monday before the Senate Judiciary Committee and faced questions about the investigation of Biden’s son Hunter as well as the fallout from the…

Biden to visit Mich. vaccine plant as winter throws a curve

WASHINGTON (AP) — Extreme winter weather is dealing the first major setback to the Biden administration’s planned swift rollout of coronavirus vaccines just as the national vaccination campaign was hitting its stride. The disruptions caused by frigid temperatures, snow and ice left the White House scrambling to work with states to make up “lost ground.”…