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Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan can be reached at sdinan@washingtontimes.com.

Articles by Stephen Dinan

Jeh Johnson (Associated Press)

DHS asks stores to watch customers behavior for terrorist signs

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said his department will be issuing new guidance to retailers this week giving them pointers on how to spot potential terrorists among their customers by looking at what they're buying. Published September 10, 2014

Police in riot gear work to disperse protesters in Ferguson, Missouri. Federal agencies acknowledged they don't track how the automatic weapons and armored trucks are used by police, the Defense and Homeland Security departments testified to Congress. (Associated Press)

Obama administration blames locals for police militarization

The Obama administration said Tuesday the federal government and the military were not to blame for disturbing scenes like the heavily armored police who confronted citizens last month in Ferguson, Missouri, saying responsibility lies instead with the local police who are asking for more firepower and state officials who approve the requests. Published September 9, 2014

President Obama has vehemently defended his decision to swap five Taliban guerrillas for Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, but the president may no longer have control over the narrative and likely will face increasingly intense questioning over the deal. (Associated Press)

House rebukes Obama on Bergdahl deal, as some Dems agree he broke law

The House voted Tuesday to formally condemn President Obama for releasing five Taliban warriors earlier this year in an exchange for Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, with nearly two dozen Democrats joining Republicans in declaring the president broke the law by not giving Congress a heads-up. Published September 9, 2014

In this May 23, 2014 photo, grocery and dairy assistant Reyna DeLoge stocks dairy products that only use milk from pasture-raised cows, at Vitamin Cottage Natural Grocers, in Denver. The Colorado-based grocery store chain recently announced that it will carry only dairy products from farms where cows graze on pasture, talking the position that grazing improves the health of cows and consumers. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)

GOP's new Obama attack: Got milk?

Republicans Tuesday seized on the news that milk futures have hit record highs, saying it's the latest indication of a struggling economy and tougher times for average Americans under President Obama. Published September 9, 2014

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, criticizes President Barack Obama, saying he has not taking a stand on the immigration crisis on the U.S.-Mexico border and is putting off executive action until after the politically-charged midterm election in November, Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2014, during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. From left are, Rep. John Carter, R-Texas, Rep. Lamar S. Smith, R-Texas, Cruz, and Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala. Cruz said that the reason unaccompanied minors flooded the Southwest border during the summer is that they believe they will get amnesty and be allowed to stay in the United States. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Cruz's immigration stance could presage government shutdown showdown

Sen. Ted Cruz said Tuesday that Republicans should insist on halting President Obama's immigration policies including tying it to continued government funding, raising the possibility that Congress could be headed for another shutdown showdown. Published September 9, 2014

Supporters stand behind Democratic members of Congress during a rally in support of a joint resolution proposing an amendment to the Constitution of the United States relating to contributions and expenditures intended to affect elections. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

Senate debates limiting campaign cash by altering First Amendment

Senators opened a historic debate Monday on whether to alter the First Amendment to give Congress the power to squelch free speech in the form of campaign spending, setting up a showdown vote later this week on the first alterations to the founding document in decades. Published September 8, 2014

Do-something Congress keeps on going

Despite a terrible reputation as a do-nothing Congress, Capitol Hill has actually been pretty productive, with lawmakers notching an average year for debating and passing bills, according to The Washington Times' Legislative Futility Index. Published September 8, 2014

FILE – In this April 9, 2013 file photo Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., left, talks with Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. on Capitol Hill in Washington. After investigating the IRS for more than a year, two key senators, a Democrat, Levin, and a Republican, McCain, disagree on whether the tax agency treated conservative groups worse than their liberal counterparts when they applied for tax-exempt status. The Senate’s subcommittee on investigations released competing reports Friday on how the IRS handled applications from political groups during the 2010 and 2012 elections. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Senate investigators find no IRS bias against conservatives

The Senate's chief investigative panel has concluded that there was no political bias in the agency's targeting of nonprofit groups for special scrutiny, saying that while the questions were intrusive, the IRS inspector general blew the matter out of proportion. Published September 7, 2014

Setting it aside: President Obama's delay of executive action on immigration likely will help a few Senate Democrats running for re-election but will hurt tens of thousands who face deportation. (Associated Press)

Obama immigration delay means 60,000 to be deported by November

Nearly 60,000 immigrants will be deported before November elections if the government holds its pace, and many of them might have earned tentative legal status had President Obama taken unilateral action to halt deportations. Published September 7, 2014

** FILE **  President Obama speaks in the Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, Aug. 1, 2014. (Associated Press)

Obama shelves immigration action; Hispanic activists enraged

Immigrant-rights groups reacted furiously Saturday after the White House made clear President Obama will not take unilateral action on immigration before November's elections, nodding at the political realities of the issue as he punted on the key policy questions. Published September 6, 2014

** FILE ** The exterior of the Internal Revenue Service building in Washington is seen here on March 22, 2013. (Associated Press)

Dems' report clears IRS of political bias, blames IG for botching probe

The IRS's internal auditor distorted the facts surrounding the IRS tea party targeting scandal, leaving Americans with the impression that the tax agency went after conservative groups without also targeting liberal groups, the Senate's top investigative panel said Friday. Published September 5, 2014

From left, Raul Amador Sanchez, 7, from Georgia, Alexandra Diaz, 9, and her brother Andy Diaz, 7, both from Baltimore, Md., hold up signs as they join their parent during a news conference of immigrant families and children’s advocates responding to the President Barack Obama’s response to the crisis of unaccompanied children and families illegally entering the US, Monday, July 7, 2014, on the steps of St. John's Church in Washington. A top Obama administration official says no one, not even children trying to escape violent countries, can illegally enter the United States without eventually facing deportation proceedings. But Homeland Security Sec Jeh Johnson basically acknowledged Sunday that such proceedings might be long delayed, and he said that coping with floods of unaccompanied minors crossing the border is a legal and humanitarian dilemma for the US. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Surge of illegal immigrant children wanes

The number of illegal immigrants in the U.S. held steady at about 11.3 million last year, according to a new Pew Research Center estimate released Wednesday that suggests the problem has reached a sort of dubious equilibrium. Published September 3, 2014

Illegal immigrant children could increase the school-age population in districts, marking a significant influx of students likely to need intense help with English and other remedial education programs. No longer just a border problem, the surge is now an issue for officials in communities throughout the country, where 126 counties or cities have at least 50 children placed. (Associated Press)

Illegal border children taxing resources inside U.S. schools

Central American children may be surging across the southwest border, but their effect is felt in school districts across the country — and nowhere more than in Alexandria, Virginia, where federal authorities this year placed 205 in a city of fewer than 150,000 people. Published September 3, 2014

Barbara Gonzalez, public information officer for Immigration and Customs Enforcement, shows a play room in an area where immigrant families are housed at the Artesia Residential Detention Facility inside the Federal Law Enforcement Center in Artesia, N.M. on Friday, July 11, 2014. U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson visited the facility Friday and warned immigrants that "we will send you back" if they try crossing into the country. (AP Photo/Pool, El Paso Times, Rudy Gutierrez)

Homeland lacks resources to both secure border, care for kids, probe finds

Despite the Obama administration's vow to shift resources, Border Patrol agents say they are still tasked with caring for children who have crossed the border illegally, which is undermining their regular patrol duties of going after gun, drug and human smugglers. Published September 2, 2014

Republicans may shift immigration debate to protecting jobs

An effort is underway to push the Republican Party to rethink its close ties to business groups on immigration, with conservatives arguing that the way to fight immigration-reform proposals is to focus on how they would force Americans into a tougher competition for jobs. Published August 31, 2014