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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

FRC Action and Family Research Council President Tony Perkins speaks during the Values Voter Summit, held by the Family Research Council Action, Friday, Oct. 11, 2013, in Washington. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana/File)

High court declines photographer's appeal in gay marriage case

The Supreme Court refused Monday to jump into the raging debate over whether artisans must participate in same-sex weddings, allowing to stand a New Mexico high court against a photographer who declined to take pictures at a commitment ceremony. Published April 7, 2014

Lt. Gen. Mark Milley talks to the media near Fort Hood's main gate, Thursday, April 3, 2014, in Fort Hood, Texas. A soldier opened fire Wednesday on fellow service members at the Fort Hood military base, killing three people and wounding 16 before committing suicide. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

Calls rise after Fort Hood to allow carrying firearms on base

Fort Hood may seem worlds apart from Sandy Hook Elementary School, but they have at least two things in common: Both have been victimized recently by horrific mass shootings, and neither allows the carrying of firearms. Published April 5, 2014

California Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco, right, leaves the San Francisco Federal Building, Wednesday, March 26, 2014, in San Francisco.  The FBI has filed a 137-page affidavit outlining a detailed corruption case against Yee, who is accused of asking for campaign donations in exchange for introducing an undercover agent to an arms trafficker. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

NRA ad targets disgraced California Dem Yee

Disgraced California state Sen. Leland Yee is the new poster boy in a social media ad campaign released Thursday by the National Rifle Association. Published March 28, 2014

Heaven and hell: A mudslide has devastated Oso, Wash., a type of community that has become popular among retirees. (Associated Press)

In wild West, growing battle of man vs. nature

The deadly mudslide in Washington state offers a grim perspective on an issue bedeviling the West: homebuyers who move beyond the suburbs and build their houses up against, and even into, the wilderness. Published March 27, 2014

Remote Alaskan villages rely on air travel for access to major hospitals. In King Cove, however, the Interior Department has refused to allow a 10-mile gravel road to the airport at Cold Bay. Nineteen people have died there in airplane crashes at a makeshift airport in King Cove, some of them emergency responders and patients attempting to reach the regional hospital in Anchorage. (Associated Press)

Alaskans battle for survival against feds' protection of migratory birds

Washington's refusal to allow a 10-mile gravel road between King Cove and the airport at Cold Bay is a matter of life or death for Alaskans who rely on quick access to airports and hospital flights as much as migratory birds rely on the eel grass that the Interior Department would rather preserve. Published March 26, 2014

A worker helps monitor water pumping pressure and temperature at a hydraulic fracturing and extraction site outside Rifle, in western Colorado. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

Fracking initiatives start to fracture Colorado

A gusher of proposed ballot initiatives on hydraulic fracturing is poised to flood the November ballot as Colorado digs in for a gritty election battle between the oil and gas industry and environmentalists. Published March 24, 2014

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich addresses the Conservative Political Action Conference annual meeting in National Harbor, Md., Saturday, March 8, 2014. Saturday marks the third and final day of the annual Conservative Political Action Conference, which brings together prospective presidential candidates, conservative opinion leaders and tea party activists from coast to coast. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

Gingrich: Obamacare will cost Democrats the Senate this fall

Lawmakers and pundits marked the fourth anniversary of the signing of the Affordable Care Act on Sunday, with Republicans predicting the troubled centerpiece of the Obama presidency will hurt the entire Democratic Party this fall. Published March 23, 2014

Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell ordered an investigation into the EPA's 'raid' on family-run gold mining businesses. The EPA stood by it's actions, saying its investigations were done 'courteously.' (Associated press)

Report: EPA accused of overkill in 'raid' on Alaska gold-mine

Last year's Environmental Protection Agency raid on the small gold-mining town of Chicken, Alaska, constituted a clear case of overkill by federal authorities seeking violations of environmental regulations, according to an official review of the controversial incident released Thursday. Published March 13, 2014

Associated Press

Six Senate seats could hinge on Keystone pipeline

After five years of stalling on the Keystone XL pipeline, President Obama suddenly has a half-dozen compelling reasons to make up his mind, and all of them are running to retain their Senate seats. Published March 9, 2014