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Valerie Richardson

Valerie Richardson

Valerie Richardson covers politics and the West from Denver. She can be reached at

Articles by Valerie Richardson

OUSTED: Elizabeth Wrigley-Field of Madison, Wis., is escorted out of the Wisconsin State Capitol Assembly Room lobby in Madison on Thursday after staying overnight with other demonstrators there. (Associated Press)

Wis. governor signs bill limiting unions' power

Capping weeks of political drama and open political warfare with the state's public-sector unions, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker on Friday quietly signed landmark legislation reining in the power of public-employee unions after a pitched battle over collective bargaining that shows no signs of abating. Published March 10, 2011

MARCH SADNESS: Brandon Davies has been suspended from the BYU basketball team for the rest of the season for violating the school's honor code. (Associated Press)

BYU hoops star suspended for sex acts

The same behavior that cost Brandon Davies the rest of his basketball season at Brigham Young University might have earned him an "A" at Northwestern. Published March 3, 2011

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins (Associated Press)

House GOP eyes DOMA defense

House Republicans and conservative groups are working together behind the scenes to fill the legal void created Wednesday when the Obama administration announced that it would no longer defend the federal law banning gay marriage. Published February 24, 2011

Obama gets out of way of gay marriage

The Obama administration announced Wednesday that it had withdrawn its legal support for the federal Defense of Marriage Act, stating that the law is unconstitutional and therefore the administration is under no obligation to defend it. Published February 23, 2011

Opponents of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker's bill to eliminate most collective-bargaining rights for many state employees take part in their eighth day of protesting Tuesday at the state Capitol in Madison, Wis. Meanwhile, hundreds of miles away in Denver, union activists rallied in a show of support. (Associated Press)

Three states away in Colorado, union backers rally for Wisconsin

Denver was one of at least a dozen cities where labor organizations hosted solidarity rallies Tuesday in support of Wisconsin's public-sector unions and against Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who has proposed limiting their collective-bargaining rights and requiring members to contribute more to their pension and health care plans. Published February 22, 2011

Bingaman's exit puts 'safe' N.M. seat in play

Democrats put on a brave face after Sen. Jeff Bingaman of New Mexico announced Friday that he would leave office in 2012, but it's hard to see how his retirement contains any good news for the party. Published February 20, 2011

Sen. Jon Kyl, Arizona Republican, set off a flurry of speculation about his successor after he announced that he would not seek another Senate term next year. (Associated Press)

Giffords is seen as shoo-in for Kyl's seat

Any discussion of who's likely to succeed outgoing Sen. Jon Kyl of Arizona needs to factor in the following: If Rep. Gabrielle Giffords wants the seat, it's hers. Published February 10, 2011

Colorado GOP chief won't seek 3rd term

With some scathing words for his critics, Colorado Republican Party Chairman Dick Wadhams dropped his bid for a third term this week in the face of a challenge from state Sen. Ted Harvey, who said he aims to return "authentic conservative leadership to the party structure." Published February 9, 2011

John Heubusch, executive director of the Ronald Reagan Foundation, shows off a new bronze statue of President Reagan and first lady Nancy Reagan. (Garrett Cheen/Special to The Washington Times)

Reagan library update grabs attention and holds it

There's nothing quite like the thought of visiting a presidential library to make the average American stifle a yawn and reach for the remote. As it turns out, the people behind the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum understand this. That's why they never stop loading the library with goodies. Published February 3, 2011

N.Y., California sing blue-state budget blues

California's Jerry Brown and New York's Andrew M. Cuomo won their gubernatorial election bids last year with strong support from public-employee unions, which puts them each in a particularly dicey position when it comes to their states' mammoth budget deficits. Published February 1, 2011

On the presidential campaign trail in Anderson, S.C., on Feb. 6, 1980, Ronald Reagan marks his 69th birthday, pulling up a chunk of the cake along with the candle, as wife Nancy looks on. Festivities will mark his birth centennial this week. (Associated Press)

Reagan's 100th wins a gala for the Gipper

The Great Communicator would have been 100 years old on Feb. 6, and those at the Ronald Reagan Foundation and Library here plan to do a bit more than fire up another candle. Published January 30, 2011

'Old school' Hatch girds for new wave in primary

Orrin Hatch has served Utah for many years — maybe too many. The political mood among Republican voters favors fresh faces with tea party connections, and while the 76-year-old Mr. Hatch may be a veritable political institution in his state, he's not exactly fresh. Published January 30, 2011

Outspoken Tucson sheriff faces recall bid

Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik has never lost an election, but that was before his remarks assigning blame for the deadly Tucson, Ariz., shooting to political "vitriol" and calling Arizona "a mecca for prejudice and bigotry." Published January 20, 2011

Fighting Sioux on warpath over nickname

When North Dakota's state board of higher education voted to phase out the "Fighting Sioux" last year, that seemed to signal the end of the lengthy battle over the University of North Dakota's nickname and logo. Except that it didn't. Published January 17, 2011

**FILE** Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (Associated Press)

Gay group in, values groups out at CPAC

Social and economic conservatives have worked together under the mantle of the Republican Party since Ronald Reagan made them the core of his 1980 coalition, but the alliance now may be fraying. Published January 5, 2011

CPAC attendance raises gay issue

Some of the biggest names in social conservatism are opting out of the upcoming high-profile Conservative Political Action Conference in response to what they see as the growing marginalization of social issues, culminating in the participation of GOProud, a gay-rights Republican group. Published December 29, 2010