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Tom Howell Jr.

Tom Howell Jr.

Tom Howell Jr. covers politics for The Washington Times. He can be reached at thowell@washingtontimes.com.

Articles by Tom Howell Jr.

Obamacare advocates target Hispanics in enrollment push

A map in Angela Franco's office highlights the D.C. streets most likely to have Hispanic business owners, and it serves as a blueprint for foot soldiers who have been pounding the pavement to get people covered through the city's Obamacare exchange. Published September 1, 2014

FILE - In this July 17, 2014, file photo,. Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Robert Menendez, D-N.J., gestures as she speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington. Menendez threatened Thursday, July 24, to block U.S. arms sales to Iraq if Congress doesn't get an assessment of Iraqi forces and assurances the weapons won't fall into the hands of extremist militants.(AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Sen. Robert Menendez: Russia has launched a direct attack on Ukraine

Sen. Robert Menendez said Sunday that eastern Ukraine is under direct attack by Russia and that Western allies should seriously consider military assistance, although not troops on the ground, to repel President Vladimir Putin's designs in the region. Published August 31, 2014

Feinstein: Obama maybe 'too cautious' on Islamic State, but plans are underway

The chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee said Sunday that President Obama is notably cautious — "maybe, in this instance, too cautious" — but insisted the U.S. and its allies will coalesce behind a plan to beat back the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria before their well-funded sources take Baghdad. Published August 31, 2014

Burger King employee Brittany Buckhannon, 24, right, demonstrates during a protest for higher wages and worker's unions outside a McDonald's restaurant, Thursday, May 15, 2014, in Atlanta. Calling for higher pay and the right to form a union without retaliation, fast-food chain workers protested Thursday as part of a wave of strikes and protests in 150 cities across the U.S. and 33 additional countries on six continents. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Franchises could be next union battleground

Business groups say they're gearing up to defend against what they believe to be the next front in the battle with organized labor: the franchise model used by McDonald's and other iconic brands. Published August 31, 2014

President Barack Obama, right, and first lady Michelle Obama board Air Force One before their departure from Andrews Air Force Base, Saturday, Aug. 30, 2014. The first family is attending the wedding of Sam Kass, their longtime family chef. The bride is MSNBC host Alex Wagner. The wedding is at a farm-to-table restaurant in Westchester County, north of New York City. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Obama accused of diminishing U.S. standing in fight against terrorism

President Obama is under fire for his cautious approach to beating back the Islamic State's march through Iraq and Syria, with a top House Republican suggesting his foreign policy was in free fall and that Western allies no longer view the U.S. as a leader in the fight against bad actors. Published August 31, 2014

** FILE ** Rep. Mike Rogers, Michigan Republican. (Associated Press)

Rep. Mike Rogers: Obama's foreign policy is in "free fall"

President Obama's foreign policy is in "absolute free-fall" amid the rise of the Islamic State, and Western allies no longer view the U.S. as a leader in confronting religious extremism in the Middle East, the House intelligence chairman said Sunday. Published August 31, 2014

**FILE** Sen. Tom Coburn, Oklahoma Republican (Associated Press)

Coburn: Did feds illegally skirt Obamacare employer mandate?

Sen. Tom Coburn wants to know if the Obama administration violated the law by making it easier for seasonal and temporary workers in the federal government to get health coverage — perhaps so the feds would not be penalized under Obamacare's "employer mandate." Published August 28, 2014

Coburn: Feds may have broken law on employer mandate

Sen. Tom Coburn wants to know whether the Obama administration violated the law by making it easier for seasonal and temporary workers in the federal government to get health coverage — perhaps so the feds would not be penalized under Obamacare's "employer mandate." Published August 28, 2014

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell (Associated Press)

Obamacare contracts soaring beyond estimates

At least a third of the contracts the administration inked to help implement Obamacare are over budget, an inspector general's audit reported Tuesday, highlighting the health program's potential to inflate costs. Published August 26, 2014

Harris: Subpoenas sent in Maryland health exchange probe

A Maryland congressman announced Tuesday the Health and Human Services Department's inspector general has issued subpoenas to get to the bottom of what went wrong with his state's Obamacare exchange. Published August 26, 2014

** FILE ** In this file photo taken June 14, 2014, incumbent Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor rides the the Pink Tomato Festival parade as he campaigns in Warren, Ark. Pryor is being challenged by Republican Congressman Tom Cotton in a campaign that began about one year ago. (AP Photo/Danny Johnston, File)

Sen. Mark Pryor releases a rare pro-Obamacare ad

Sen. Mark Pryor's re-election campaign released an ad Wednesday that touts a part of Obamacare — a rarity among Democrats hoping to stave off attacks derived from the law's negative headlines and poor polling numbers. Published August 20, 2014

This 24 March, 2006 photo shows US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tax forms. The deadline for filing federal income-tax returns is 17 April, 2006 this year, because the normal deadline of 15 April falls on a Saturday.   AFP PHOTO/Karen BLEIER

(Photo credit should read KAREN BLEIER/AFP/Getty Images)

Obamacare tax forms may pose challenge for enrollees, exchanges

Obamacare customers won't be able to file their tax returns next year until the government sends them a form detailing their coverage and tax credits, and if those forms are late some taxpayers could face a delay in seeking their refunds. Published August 20, 2014

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's campaign is hitting Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes for renting a bus acquired by her father's company for less than what other similar services would charge. (Associated Press)

Grimes takes heat over family discount on bus

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's campaign is hitting Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes for renting a bus acquired by her father's company for less than what other similar services would charge — a discrepancy legal experts say could be considered an illegal in-kind contribution. Published August 19, 2014