Alana Wise

Alana Wise joined WAMU in September 2018 as the 2018-2020 Audion Reporting Fellow for Guns & America. Selected as one of 10 recipients nationwide of the Audion Reporting Fellowship, Alana works in the WAMU newsroom as part of a national reporting project and is spending two years focusing on the impact of guns in the Washington region.

Prior to joining WAMU, Wise was a politics and later companies news reporter at Reuters, where she covered the 2016 presidential election and the U.S. airline industry. Ever the fan of cherry blossoms and unpredictable weather, Alana, an Atlanta native and Howard University graduate, can be found roaming the city admiring puppies and the national monuments, in that order.

 

Those collecting unemployment benefits under the American Rescue Plan must accept "suitable" employment when offered, President Biden said on Monday, responding to last week's underwhelming April jobs report.

"We're going to make it clear that anyone collecting unemployment, who was offered a suitable job, must take the job or lose their unemployment benefits," Biden said before adding: "We don't see much evidence of that."

Before Taqueria Las Gemelas was approved for coronavirus relief aid on Wednesday, the Mexican eatery, like countless other businesses across the country, was struggling to stay afloat.

Updated May 4, 2021 at 3:43 PM ET

President Biden on Tuesday announced a new goal to administer at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine to 70% of American adults by the Fourth of July.

The administration also aims to have 160 million adults fully vaccinated by then, a push to improve the level of immunity in the country to the point where the coronavirus has less of an opportunity to spread and so that more public health restrictions can be lifted, administration officials told reporters.

Updated May 2, 2021 at 2:27 PM ET

Texans around Dallas sent Susan Wright to a runoff election to fill the congressional seat of her late husband, Republican Ron Wright. She will face state Rep. Jake Ellzey, also a Republican, who came in second place in Saturday's special election. He edged out Democrat Jana Sanchez, who conceded.

The White House has completed a review of its policy on North Korea, press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters Friday, saying that while the aim of the U.S. remains denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, the Biden administration is open to diplomatic talks to boost security for the region.

President Biden met with former President Jimmy Carter and former first lady Rosalynn Carter on Thursday in their hometown of Plains, Ga. The trip, which comes on Biden's 100th day in office, is part of an effort to celebrate his early accomplishments in office and make the push for trillions in new spending that would reshape the nation's economy.

Updated April 28, 2021 at 11:56 PM ET

President Biden told Congress on Wednesday night that "America is on the move again," as he touted his administration's work to end the coronavirus crisis and urged lawmakers to work together to prove "that our government still works — and can deliver" for the American people.

Updated April 28, 2021 at 5:03 PM ET

On the eve of his 100th day in office, President Biden will lay out the latest plank in his economic agenda, a massive spending package that senior administration officials say would improve the lives of millions of Americans.

President Biden will require federal contractors to pay their employees a minimum wage of $15 an hour starting March 30, 2022, senior administration officials say — a hike that will benefit a few hundred thousand people and underscore the broader Democratic push to raise the federal pay floor to the same level.

Biden plans to sign an executive order on Tuesday that will kick off the rulemaking process for the higher wage, the officials told reporters Monday.

The Justice Department will launch an investigation into the Louisville Metro Police Department to determine if there is a pattern of discrimination or excessive force within its ranks, Attorney General Merrick Garland announced Monday.

The investigation marks the launch of the second such "pattern or practice" investigation since Garland took over as attorney general and comes more than a year after the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor by Louisville, Ky., police fueled worldwide protests against police violence and racial injustice.

Updated April 24, 2021 at 3:00 PM ET

President Biden on Saturday declared the mass slaughter of Armenians at the hands of Ottoman Turks more than a century ago a "genocide," bucking pressure from Turkey's government as well as decades of precedent to describe the atrocity as one that was ethnically motivated.

Updated April 28, 2021 at 7:00 PM ET

South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott will deliver the Republican response to President Biden's address to a joint session of Congress Wednesday night, aiming to highlight the contrast between Biden's agenda and the GOP message.

Scott is expected to use his address to celebrate former President Donald Trump for the gains the nation has been making on COVID-19 vaccinations.

Updated April 20, 2021 at 8:05 PM ET

President Biden said the guilty verdict against former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin "can be a moment of significant change" for the United States as it grapples with systemic racism.

Biden and Vice President Harris addressed the nation on Tuesday, after Chauvin was found guilty of murder for the death of George Floyd during an arrest last year.

Updated April 19, 2021 at 7:00 PM ET

U.S. Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick, who engaged with pro-Trump rioters during the Jan. 6 insurrection, died of natural causes the day after the attack, Washington, D.C.'s chief medical examiner announced Monday.

Updated April 15, 2021 at 3:57 AM ET

The United States will withdraw all remaining troops from Afghanistan by the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, President Biden announced Wednesday, turning the page on a conflict that has cost trillions of dollars and the lives of more than 2,300 American troops.

Updated April 13, 2021 at 1:10 PM ET

U.S. Capitol Police Officer William "Billy" Evans on Tuesday is lying in honor at the Capitol, where he served for 18 years and lost his life in the line of duty this month.

President Biden on Monday called Daunte Wright's death "tragic" but cautioned it would not be tolerated as an excuse for violence despite the trauma the Black community often experiences at the hands of police.

"We've spoken to the governor and the mayor [of Brooklyn Center, Minn.]. We've spoken to the authorities there. And I haven't called Daunte Wright's family, but prayers are with their family. It's really a tragic thing that happened, but I think we've got to wait and see what the investigation shows," Biden said.

When an assailant stormed a grocery store in Boulder, Colo., last month and fatally shot 10 people, the suspected weapon of choice — a Ruger AR-556 pistol — captured immediate attention. Not for what it technically was — a pistol — but for what it more closely resembled — an assault-style rifle.

Updated March 31, 2021 at 1:31 PM ET

Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz, a controversial conservative and boisterous ally of former President Donald Trump's, confirmed Tuesday he is being investigated by the Department of Justice over sexual misconduct but denied the allegations tied to the probe.

The White House on Tuesday announced a half-dozen new actions in response to attacks and harassment that Asian American and Pacific Islander communities in the United States have faced increasingly over the past year.

"Across our nation, an outpouring of grief and outrage continues at the horrific violence and xenophobia perpetrated against Asian American communities, especially Asian American women and girls," the White House said in a statement.

Updated March 25, 2021 at 3:28 PM ET

President Biden is doubling his original COVID-19 vaccination goal to 200 million shots in arms by his 100th day in office — which is just over a month away.

Vice President Harris will lead the administration's diplomatic push to work with Mexico and the Northern Triangle countries of Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras to address the root causes of migration, President Biden told reporters on Wednesday.

It's the first major foreign policy portfolio to be assigned to Harris, and it comes as the White House grapples with a growing number of migrants at the southern border, including thousands of minors arriving without adult family members. Harris will work with countries to enhance immigration enforcement on their borders, Biden said.

President Biden on Tuesday said the Affordable Care Act special enrollment period would be extended from May 15 to August 15. Biden spoke in Ohio to celebrate the anniversary of the health care bill and to promote his American Rescue Plan.

Biden also spoke again briefly about the Colorado shooting — which took the lives of 10 people, including a police officer — saying his "heart goes out" to the victims and survivors.

Updated March 21, 2021 at 10:44 AM ET

Republican Julia Letlow has won the Louisiana congressional seat left vacant when her husband, Rep.-elect Luke Letlow, died of complications from COVID-19 days before he would have been sworn into office.

The Associated Press called the race for Letlow on Saturday night.

President Biden said on Thursday that his administration would reach its initial goal of administering 100 million shots of the COVID-19 vaccines well ahead of his initial 100-day benchmark.

Biden said that the goal of 100 million shots would be achieved on Friday, which will be 58 days into his presidency.

He said he would announce his next vaccination goal next week.

"We need millions more to get vaccinated," Biden said, urging people to get the vaccine when it's their turn and to take other precautions to stop the spread.

A man was arrested Wednesday afternoon near the Naval Observatory and charged with several counts related to weapons and ammunition, according the Washington, D.C., Metropolitan Police Department. The Naval Observatory is the vice presidential residence, though Vice President Harris and her family do not live at the estate yet.

Paul Murray, 31, of San Antonio was first detained by the U.S. Secret Service based on an intelligence bulletin originating from Texas. He was later formally arrested by Washington police. A rifle and ammunition were recovered from his vehicle.

Updated March 17, 2021 at 1:37 PM ET

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas stressed that the U.S. is both a country of laws and of immigrants in testimony before a House panel on Wednesday.

President Biden on Tuesday told ABC News he supports reforming the filibuster, calling on the chamber to readapt its old standard of requiring dissenting members to verbally speak on the floor to delay action on a bill.

Former President Donald Trump on Tuesday recommended that all eligible Americans get the coronavirus vaccine when their opportunity comes, though he added a caveat that he also respects people's decisions not to get one.

Trump had faced growing calls for him to encourage his supporters — especially Republican men, who have voiced cynicism about the vaccine — to get vaccinated.

President Biden has chosen economist Gene Sperling to oversee the rollout of the $1.9 trillion coronavirus recovery act, leaning on the longtime Democratic adviser's expertise to deliver on promises including $1,400 checks to millions of Americans.

Biden signed the package last week. In addition to direct payments, it includes enhanced unemployment insurance, an expanded child tax credit and billions of dollars for schools, businesses and the vaccine rollout.

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