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Ben Wolfgang

Ben Wolfgang

Ben Wolfgang covers the White House for The Washington Times.

Before joining the Times in March 2011, Ben spent four years as a political reporter at the Republican-Herald in Pottsville, Pa.

He can be reached at bwolfgang@washingtontimes.com.

Articles by Ben Wolfgang

**FILE** A Cabot Oil & Gas wellhead in Dimock, Pa., is seen Feb. 13, 2012. (Associated Press)

EPA declares water in Pa. town safe to drink despite fracking

The Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday declared that drinking water in Dimock, Pa., is safe to drink, despite concerns from some residents and environmentalists that nearby natural gas fracking had contaminated supplies. Published July 25, 2012

Presidential debates key, but leave out other voices

Even in the age of social media and 24-hour news cycles, presidential debates still play a key role in the election process, Frank Fahrenkopf, co-chairman of the Commission on Presidential Debates, said on Tuesday. Published July 24, 2012

Obama administration stalls economic engine of new free-trade pacts

The free-trade consensus of the previous two decades has frayed under President Obama, and while he has pushed through some low-level agreements, he has fallen far short of his predecessors on this key driver of the nation's economy, and analysts say the U.S. is lagging behind many of its chief competitors. Published July 18, 2012

Rep. Andy Harris says a new report has suggestions for the EPA "to improve the transparency, quality and ultimate value of its [fracking] study." (Associated Press)

EPA study on fracking and water questioned

The oil and gas industry continues to cast doubt on the validity of an ongoing Environmental Protection Agency effort to determine potential links between fracking and water contamination. Published July 10, 2012

Bob Kerrey, a Democratic candidate for a Senate seat in Nebraska, tours the Benson neighborhood in Omaha with his wife, former Saturday Night Live writer Sarah Paley, and Henry, his son. Mr. Kerrey has described Ms. Paley as a "comedian." (Associated Press)

Joke by Kerrey's wife not funny in Nebraska

Already down in the polls, Democrat Bob Kerrey's hopes to reclaim his old Nebraska Senate seat may have taken another hit after his wife, former Saturday Night Live writer Sarah Paley, penned a biting piece for July's Vogue magazine that some view as insulting to the Cornhusker State. Published July 10, 2012

Pensions at charter schools hot topic with IRS

Charter school supporters are continuing to pressure the Internal Revenue Service to change proposed regulations that could disqualify teachers at charter schools from public pension systems. Published July 9, 2012

Mitt Romney bolstered Massachusetts' graduation exams during his time as governor, adding a science, technology and engineering portion to the English and math tests taken by all 10th-graders for graduation. (Associated Press)

Romney's record on education includes successes, failures

Mitt Romney kept academic standards high, pushed for more charter schools and took other steps during his time as Massachusetts governor to keep the state in the top tier of student performance — but he stumbled in his efforts to institute merit pay for teachers, revamp the tenure system and other aims. Published July 8, 2012

Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz and others went on offense on Sunday news shows against the presumptive GOP presidential nominee. (Associated Press)

Democrats sync attacks on Romney's tax returns, bank accounts

Prominent Democrats on Sunday, including the governor of Maryland, a former White House press secretary and the head of the Democratic National Committee, launched a coordinated attack on Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney's finances. Published July 8, 2012

Vice President Joe Biden salutes after arriving to speak before the 2012 National Educational Association annual meeting, Tuesday, July 3, 2012, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Biden warns teachers of Romney hit

In a foretaste of the political battles to come this fall over education, Vice President Joseph R. Biden told the nation's largest teachers union that presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney and his party do not respect the work they do. Published July 3, 2012

**FILE** A ShadowHawk drone is seen in September 2011 with Montgomery County, Texas, SWAT team members. (Associated Press/Vanguard Defense Industries)

Drone industry releases ethics code

The drone industry on Monday unveiled its first-ever "code of conduct" policy, designed to protect the privacy of those on the ground and ensure the sector adheres to safety standards as the popularity and usage of unmanned aerial vehicles continue to grow. Published July 2, 2012