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Jacqueline Klimas

Jacqueline Klimas

Jacqueline Klimas covers Capitol Hill for The Washington Times. She can be reached at jklimas@washingtontimes.com.

Articles by Jacqueline Klimas

With the Capitol in the background, Army veteran David Dickerson of Oklahoma City, Okla., right, and Air Force veteran Linda Stanley, from San Diego, Calif., now with Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA), join others to place 1,892 flags representing veteran and service members who have died by suicide to date in 2014, Thursday, March 27, 2014, on the National Mall in Washington. The event also marked the introduction of The Suicide Prevention for America's Veterans Act by Sen. John Walsh, D-Mont., which calls for greater access to mental health care. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak) **FILE**

Active duty suicides increase in 2014: report

More active duty service members have committed suicide in the first half of 2014 than over the same time period last year, according to a Defense Department report released Thursday. Published December 11, 2014

Retiring Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Sen. Carl Levin said he's been disappointed by constant personal attacks on President Obama's foreign policy. (Associated Press)

Carl Levin fears foreign policy to be clouded

Sen. Carl Levin, the chairman of the Armed Services who is retiring at the end of this year, said Wednesday he fears Republicans' animosity toward President Obama will make it impossible to find compromises on critical national security issues over the next two years. Published December 10, 2014

Rep. Jeff Miller, Florida Republican, speaks May 28, 2014, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (Associated Press) **FILE**

House passes bill to improve military mental health care

The House passed a bill Tuesday to improve mental health care for veterans in honor of a Marine who killed himself after struggling with a slow-moving appeal process at the Department of Veterans Affairs. Published December 9, 2014

Rep. Buck McKeon tearfully says goodbye to Congress

Retiring Rep. Buck McKeon gave a tearful farewell to Congress Thursday ahead of a vote on his final annual defense bill as chairman of the House Armed Services Committee. Published December 4, 2014

Victims of the Fort Hood shooting will soon be eligible to receive the Purple Heart, with Congress pushing ahead with a policy change that would officially recognize domestic terrorism as an issue, rather than the "workplace violence" designation the Obama administration had used. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

Fort Hood shooting victims will soon be eligible to receive Purple Heart

Victims of the Fort Hood shooting will soon be eligible to receive the Purple Heart, with Congress pushing ahead with a policy change that would officially recognize domestic terrorism as an issue, rather than the "workplace violence" designation the Obama administration had used. Published December 3, 2014

Senate Permanent subcommittee on Investigations Chairman Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, April 1, 2014, during the subcommittee's hearing: "Caterpillar's Offshore Tax Strategy. Calling Caterpillar Inc., a member of the "corporate profit-shifting club," Levin accused the manufacturing giant Tuesday of employing an aggressive tax strategy to avoid paying billions of dollars in U.S. taxes.  (AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke)

Carl Levin: Annual defense-policy bill keeps Guantanamo Bay restrictions

Congressional negotiators have reached a deal on the annual defense policy bill, the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee said Monday evening, adding that he lost his bid to loosen restrictions on transferring detainees from Guantanamo Bay prison. Published December 1, 2014

VA's contracting office was never told about the ongoing inspector general's investigation when it awarded the contract to Tridec, according to spokeswoman Genevieve Billia. The blanket purchase order award to the company is worth up to $9.2 million, but VA officials haven't yet issued any orders on the contract. (Associated Press)

VA's 5-day firing notice too long for Congress, too short for lawyers

The Department of Veterans Affairs and Congress are battling over whether the VA is firing employees fast enough as part of a major management overhaul, but legal analysts say even the five-day notice the administration has settled on is too short and employees who have been fired could sue to get their jobs back — with taxpayers on the hook for back pay. Published November 30, 2014

This undated handout photo provided by The Veterans Affairs Department, shows Sharon Helman, director of the Phoenix VA Health Care System.   Helman was fired Monday, nearly seven months after she and two high-ranking officials were placed on administrative leave amid allegations that 40 veterans died while awaiting treatment at the hospital. Helman had led the Phoenix facility since February 2012.  Best quality available.   (AP Photo/Veterans Affairs Department)

VA fires head of Phoenix hospital at center of scandal

The Veterans Affairs Department removed the head of its Phoenix hospital facility Monday, more than six months after whistleblowers said veterans were dying while on secret lists waiting for care at the center. Published November 24, 2014

The 2010 census gave respondents 14 options for ethnicity, as well as a place to write in another ethnic group with which they identified. Under the two-question set-up, however, respondents only have seven options. (Associated Press)

Ethnic groups wary of proposed 2020 census changes

Civil rights groups warned Monday that a possible change to how the Census Bureau asks about race and ethnicity in 2020 would end up clouding the picture more than it helps, and could skew the way the government distributes aid or enforces discrimination laws. Published November 24, 2014