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Tom Howell Jr.

Tom Howell Jr.

Tom Howell Jr. covers politics for The Washington Times. He can be reached at

Articles by Tom Howell Jr.

A remembrance day ceremony takes place at the near completed ceramic poppy art installation by artist Paul Cummins entitled 'Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red' in the dry moat of the Tower of London in London, Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014. The finished installation will be made up of 888,246 ceramic poppies, with the final poppy being placed on Armistice Day today. Each poppy represents a British and Commonwealth military fatality from World War I. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

WWI commission plans contest to design long-awaited memorial

Students, architects and even amateur designers who have a vision for what the national World War I memorial should look like will get their shot this summer, according to the body charged with honoring those who served in the Great War. Published May 14, 2015

The abortion bill the House takes up Wednesday, written by Rep. Trent Franks, Arizona Republican, also includes language designed to head off repeats of Dr. Kermit Gosnell, who ran an abortion clinic in Philadelphia and is now serving a life term for killing three babies born alive at his practice, as well as an adult patient. Wednesday's vote is timed to coincide with the second anniversary of Gosnell's conviction. (Associated Press)

Republicans push bill to ban abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy

House Republicans are set to muscle through a revamped abortion bill Wednesday that bans the controversial procedure after 20 weeks of pregnancy, insisting they've finally settled an internal GOP fight that capsized a similar bill in January. Published May 12, 2015

Republican Florida Gov. Rick Scott speaks during during the Valley Industry and Commerce Association (VICA) Leaders Forum in the Woodland Hills area of Los Angeles on April 13, 2015. (Associated Press) **FILE**

Rick Scott, Florida governor, pleads with Capitol Hill GOP to back him in Medicaid fight

Florida Gov. Rick Scott personally pleaded with Capitol Hill Republicans Tuesday to hold hearings, write letters or can do whatever they can to back his fight to renew federal funding that pays hospitals for treating the poor and illegal immigrants, even as the administration pushes him -- kicking and screaming -- to expand Medicaid instead. Published May 12, 2015

President Obama and Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell have tried to distance themselves from economist's Jon Gruber's "stupid Americans" remark. (Associated Press)

HHS rewrites Obamacare rules: Orders free birth control for all

The Obama administration on Monday ordered all insurers to provide IUDs, the contraceptive patch and other birth control free of out-of-pocket charge to all women, thereby rewriting the rules after reports that some insurance carriers were refusing to cover all types of contraceptives. Published May 11, 2015

New York State Attorney Eric Schneiderman speaks May 5, 2015, during a Law Day event at the Court of Appeals in Albany. (Associated Press) **FILE**

N.Y. AG wants to make Obamacare birth-control mandates state law

New York's top lawman proposed legislation Monday to write Obamacare's birth-control requirements into state law, extending no-cost services even to men as watchdogs accused insurers of violating the spirit -- if not the letter -- of the health overhaul by forcing women to pay out of pocket for their preferred contraceptives. Published May 11, 2015

L. Ray Roberts, left stands with his daughters Helena Roberts, 11, center, and her sister Cassie Boyle, 8, right, all from Pittsburgh, on the steps of the Supreme Court in Washington, Wednesday, March 4, 2015, as the court hears arguments in King v. Burwell, a major test of President Barack Obama's health overhaul which, if successful, could halt health care premium subsidies in all the states where the federal government runs the insurance marketplaces. The sisters are holding pictures of their grandmother Hannah Brown, who died when she was 58 years old. Their grandmother lost her job and healthcare and died a year and half later because of lack of access to treatment. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Most want Supreme Court to uphold Obamacare subsidies: poll

More than half of Americans would like the Supreme Court to uphold Obamacare's subsidies in all 50 states, according to a poll released Monday that also finds only one in 10 people are quite confident the justices will decide a pivotal health case this June objectively. Published May 11, 2015

Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Commissioner John Koskinen testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, April 15, 2015, before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing to examine IRS challenges in implementing the Affordable Care Act. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik) ** FILE **

IRS unable to make sure people comply with Obamacare penalty: Treasury IG

The IRS cannot be sure that Americans who lacked health insurance last year have complied with Obamacare's "individual mandate" penalty this tax season, according to an inspector general report Friday that pointed to a decision to delay proof-of-coverage forms from insurers and employers until 2016. Published May 8, 2015

Republican Florida Gov. Rick Scott speaks during during the Valley Industry and Commerce Association (VICA) Leaders Forum in the Woodland Hills area of Los Angeles on April 13, 2015. (Associated Press) **FILE**

Florida Gov. Rick Scott pleads with Obama administration for health care funding

Florida Gov. Rick Scott pleaded face-to-face with the Obama administration Wednesday to preserve funding for an expiring health program, even though the federal government has told him to expand Medicaid instead -- a standoff that has produced a lawsuit, delayed state budget talks and roiled Obamacare politics at large. Published May 6, 2015

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Republican, answers a question during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington on April 21, 2015. (Associated Press) **FILE**

Congress passes first budget in 6 years

Congress' unified budget cleared a procedural hurdle in the Senate Tuesday, setting the stage for final passage of the GOP-authored blueprint later in the day. Published May 5, 2015

A worker is seen behind the registration window of the emergency room at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta on Jan. 24, 2014. (Associated Press) **FILE**

ER visits up under Obamacare despite promises, doctors' poll finds

Doctors say emergency room visits have increased since the advent of Obamacare, undercutting one of the key selling points of President Obama's health care law, which was supposed to ensure a healthier population by pushing consumers to rely on their primary physicians rather than emergency trips to the hospital. Published May 4, 2015

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal speaks at the Iowa Faith & Freedom 15th Annual Spring Kick Off, in Waukee, Iowa, Saturday, April 25, 2015. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

Bobby Jindal: GOP needs Obamacare replacement 'today'

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal said Friday that congressional Republicans need to present a replacement to Obamacare immediately, arguing it isn't enough to fight for repeal or try to scrap parts of President Obama's overhaul. Published May 1, 2015