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Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan can be reached at [email protected].

Articles by Stephen Dinan

Internal Revenue Service (IRS( Commissioner John Koskinen arrives on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2014, to testify before the House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee hearing on the IRS.  (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

IRS says planned tea party crackdown rules won't be in place by November

The IRS said Wednesday its new proposal to crack down on tea party and other nonprofit groups won't be ready before the November elections — even as House Republicans voted to halt the entire process for the next year, arguing the tax agency hasn't even learned the lessons of its previous problems. Published February 26, 2014

** FILE ** Illegal immigrants have been the focus of much debate. (Associated Press)

Obama eases penalties for businesses hiring illegal immigrants

The Obama administration regularly cuts a break for businesses that violate immigration hiring rules, reducing their fines by an average of 40 percent from what they should be, according to an audit released Tuesday that suggests the government could be doing more to go after unscrupulous employers. Published February 25, 2014

FILE - In this Feb. 6, 2014 file photo, House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. It was once the backbone of the House Republican majority _ the steadfast stand that brought President Barack Obama to the negotiating table and yielded more than $2 trillion in deficit reduction. On Tuesday, Feb. 11, it abruptly vanished, the victim of Republican disunity and a president determined not to bargain again.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Tea party group settles on challenger to Boehner

After conducting a search and straw poll, a national tea party group has settled on a Republican primary challenger to House Speaker John A. Boehner, picking high school teacher J.D. Winteregg to carry the tea party banner in the intraparty battle. Published February 25, 2014

FILE - This Feb. 4, 2014 file photo shows Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky. during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. The Supreme Court appeared divided on Monday over the sole Obama administration program already in place to limit power plant and factory emissions of gases blamed for global warming. The presence of McConnell in the courtroom underscored the political stakes in President Barack Obama’s high-profile effort to deal with global warming _ a policy Obama is pursuing after failing to persuade Congress to enact climate change legislation. McConnell is facing a tough re-election fight in which he refers often to the administration’s assault on the coal industry in Kentucky and elsewhere.  (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Supreme Court weighs EPA powers on clean air

A divided Supreme Court grappled Monday with just how much power Congress intended to give the EPA in the Clean Air Act, in a case that could determine how much of an end run President Obama can do around Capitol Hill as he seeks to impose his own solutions to climate change. Published February 24, 2014

**FILE** President and Chief Executive Officer of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Thomas J. Donohue, left, listens as AFL-CIO President Richard L. Trumka, right, testifies before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing on transportation infrastructure Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh) **FILE**

U.S. Chamber of Commerce pleads for increased immigration

Polls show most Americans prefer to see legal immigration kept steady or reduced, rather than increased, believing more immigration will lead to competition for jobs. But Chamber President Thomas J. Donohue said Americans shouldn't be worried. Published February 24, 2014

FILE - In this Oct. 4, 2013 file photo, Rep. John Dingell, D-Mich. is seen on Capitol Hill in Washington. According to AP source: Dingell, the longest-serving member of Congress, to retire.  (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Dingell leaving House after record career

Rep. John D. Dingell, the longest-serving congressman in history, announced Monday he’s so fed up with Washington politics that he’s retiring, ending a storied career that’s lasted nearly six decades. Published February 24, 2014

President Obama reacts during an Oval Office meeting in this file photo. (White House photo/Pete Souza) ** FILE **

Obama's stimulus beginning to drag economy down

President Obama's stimulus may have boosted the economy when it passed in 2009, but it's now beginning to take a toll and will soon begin to leave the economy worse off than if it had never passed, according to a new report from the Congressional Budget Office. Published February 21, 2014

**FILE** Illegal immigrants file into a U.S. Border Patrol facility in Tucson, Ariz. (Associated Press)

Americans want legal immigration cut in half, poll finds

Americans want to see illegal immigrant young adults given legal status, but they are far less forgiving to most others, and want to see a huge reduction in legal immigration as well, according to a new poll released last week by a group that wants to see an immigration crackdown. Published February 21, 2014

Deport Bieber petition is second-highest ever on White House website

Deporting Justin Bieber has become the second most popular petition in the three-year history of President Obama's online petition program, tapping a depth of anger at the Canadian pop singer — and leaving the White House to ponder how to respond. Published February 20, 2014

** FILE ** President Barack Obama has lunch with members of the congressional leadership in the Oval Office Private Dining Room, May 16, 2012. The president served hoagies from Taylor Gourmet, which he purchased after a small business roundtable earlier in the day. Seated, clockwise from the president, are: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and House Speaker John Boehner.(Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

Money for nothing: Feds in D.C. closed 25% of the time

Between snow days, official holidays and the government shutdown, federal employees have worked a normal business day less than 75 percent of the time since Oct. 1, marking a startlingly chaotic beginning to the fiscal year. Published February 18, 2014

** FILE ** In this Feb. 6, 2014, file photo, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Minimum wage hike would kill a half-million jobs: CBO

Raising the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour will cost the U.S. economy a half-million jobs by 2016 but will substantially boost wages for most low-income workers, according to a Congressional Budget Office report released Tuesday that adds a significant hurdle to Democrats' push for an increase. Published February 18, 2014

A demonstrator is arrested by U.S. Capitol Police officers on Capitol Hill during a immigration rally in Washington, on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2013, seeking to push Republicans to hold a vote on a stalled immigration reform bill. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

Increasing anti-deportation protests show down side of immigration issue for Democrats

Immigrant rights activists, including some self-identified illegal immigrants, were arrested outside the White House on Monday as part of a protest against President Obama's deportation policies, signaling that even as Republicans take blame for halting legalization legislation, Democrats face political peril, too. Published February 17, 2014

In this Dec. 5, 2013, file photo, marijuana matures at the Medicine Man dispensary and grow operation in northeast Denver. (AP Photo/Ed Andrieski, file)

Banks allowed to do business with legal marijuana dealers

Banks can do business with marijuana sellers in states where use has been legalized either for recreational or medicinal purposes, under a new policy the Obama administration announced Friday. Published February 16, 2014

**FILE** State Field State Park Director Clay Phillips talks with Jared Blumenfeld, regional administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, during a tour of the park just north of the border with Mexico Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2011, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

EPA's use of secret email addresses was widespread: report

Republicans on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee said their findings call into question the work of the EPA's inspector general, who in September issued a report clearing the EPA of wrongdoing in the email scandal. Published February 13, 2014