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Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan can be reached at [email protected].

Articles by Stephen Dinan

**FILE** Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat, speaks to reporters after a Democratic caucus lunch on Capitol Hill in Washington on May 13, 2014. (Associated Press)

Reid floats immigration delay as way to break gridlock

Seeking to break a deadlock on immigration reform, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Thursday said Congress could pass a legalization bill now but make it effective in 2017, after President Obama leaves office, as a way of earning Republican support. Published May 22, 2014

** FILE ** In this Sunday, June 9, 2013, file photo provided by The Guardian newspaper in London, shows Edward Snowden, who worked as a contract employee at the U.S. National Security Agency, in Hong Kong. Two Norwegian lawmakers said Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014 that they have jointly nominated former NSA contractor Edward Snowden for the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize. (AP Photo/The Guardian, File)

House votes to shut down NSA phone-snooping

In an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote that would have been unthinkable just a few months ago, the House on Thursday approved a bill to cancel the government's bulk-data collection programs, including the NSA's phone-records snooping. Published May 22, 2014

House Speaker John A. Boehner said the president's unilateral move is exactly the type of action the GOP has been warning against, saying it shows the president isn't serious about enforcing border security. (AP Photo/San Antonio Express-News, John Davenport, Pool)

Boehner: Obama move on N.M. monument could thwart immigration reform

President Obama's new national monument in New Mexico, which he announced Wednesday, thrilled environmentalists, who said it preserves nearly 500,000 acres of spectacular and pristine lands, but it could also doom his hopes of getting Congress to pass an immigration bill this year. Published May 21, 2014

The nomination of Harvard law professor David Barron cleared a Semate procedural hurdle Wednesday in his bid to become a federal judge. (Associated Press)

Democrats push 'drone judge' past filibuster

Senate Democrats cleared the path Wednesday to confirm the so-called "drone judge," the lawyer who wrote memos justifying the government's ability to target and kill an American citizen overseas without his first having been convicted by a criminal court. Published May 21, 2014

House votes to prod VA to fire officials for delays

The House voted Wednesday to prod Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki to begin firing or demoting senior-level executives within his department who were responsible for long wait lists and poor medical care. Published May 21, 2014

The Pentagon. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

Pentagon looks to enlist young illegal alien 'dreamers' into military

The Defense Department said Monday it is looking at expanding its application pool by letting some young illegal immigrants join the military, in what could be another tool for an Obama administration seeking unilateral steps to take on immigration reform. Published May 20, 2014

Jill Abramson, the executive editor of The New York Times, is unexpectedly leaving the position and will be replaced by Dean Baquet, the managing editor of the newspaper, the paper announced Wednesday. (Evan Agostini/Associated Press)

Harry Reid says NYT firing of Abramson shows need for pay equality legislation

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid took former New York Times Executive Editor Jill Abramson's case to the Senate floor Thursday, saying her firing is a reason why Congress should pass Democrats' Paycheck Fairness Act, which would give people more avenues to sue over perceived pay discrimination. Published May 15, 2014

In this July 29, 1981 photo, Princess Diana and Prince Charles kiss on the balcony of Buckingham Palace on their wedding day, in London, England. (Photo: Associated Press)

Divorcees cheat IRS out of millions through alimony

Hundreds of thousands of divorced Americans lie to the IRS every year about their alimony payments, according to a new audit released Thursday that said the falsehood costs the government hundreds of millions of dollars a year. Published May 15, 2014

IRS Commissioner John A. Koskinen testifies on Capitol Hill April 7 before the House Appropriations Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee Budget hearing. (AP Photo)

NEW: IRS office in D.C. heavily involved in tea party assault

A year after a scorching audit revealed that the Internal Revenue Service targeted tea party groups for intrusive scrutiny, and despite an effort to clean house at the agency, many of those groups are still awaiting approval for tax-exempt status. Published May 14, 2014

Tea party leader says now is time to fix immigration system

One of the original organizers of the tea party movement said Wednesday that the time has come for conservatives to agree to tackle the immigration issue, adding fuel to the push for Republicans to agree to a bill this year. Published May 14, 2014

Midland University president and Republican Senate candidate Ben Sasse is pictured on campus in this photo from June 5, 2013, in Fremont, Neb. The Senate Conservatives Fund, a national conservative group, has endorsed Sasse in Nebraska's U.S. Senate race on Tuesday, Oct. 22, 2013, setting him up as the race's tea party candidate. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

Tea party favorite Ben Sasse wins bruising Nebraska GOP primary

Ben Sasse won the Republican nomination for Nebraska's open Senate seat Tuesday, besting a crowded, competitive field, leaving him well-positioned to win in November and delivering a win to insurgent conservative groups who said it served as a rebuke to GOP power brokers in Washington. Published May 13, 2014

** FILE ** Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. (Associated Press)

Questions on racism, drone attacks plague Obama judicial nominees

The White House is facing another tough battle over one of its judicial nominees — only this time President Obama faces opposition from his own party, with his former Senate colleagues accusing one of his picks for a federal judgeship in Georgia of turning a blind eye to racism in a debate over the Confederate symbol on the state's former flag. Published May 13, 2014

** FILE ** This March 22, 2013, file photo shows the exterior of the Internal Revenue Service building in Washington. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)

IRS is still paying billions in bogus tax credits to the poor

The IRS is still paying more than $10 billion a year in bogus payments to the poor under the Earned Income Tax Credit, the agency's auditor said in a new report released Tuesday that says about a quarter of all payments are improper. Published May 13, 2014

The refusal of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat, to allow a freewheeling Senate floor debate on the energy efficiency bill resulted in a Republican filibuster that doomed the bill to defeat for the second time in less than a year. (Associated Press Photographs)

GOP filibuster blocks energy efficiency bill

Fed up with what they see as dictatorial behavior by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Republicans on Monday filibustered to block an energy efficiency bill, dooming it to defeat for a second time in less than a year and signaling just how bad relations have gotten in the upper chamber. Published May 12, 2014

** FILE ** This March 26, 2014, file photo shows House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio speaking during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Speaker John Boehner: 'As long as I'm here, no earmarks'

House Speaker John A. Boehner has flatly ruled out a return to earmarks on Capitol Hill, putting himself squarely in the way of a growing number of his colleagues who say they want to reopen the debate over pork-barrel spending. Published May 12, 2014

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

Feds released hundreds of immigrant murderers, drunk drivers, sex-crimes convicts

Immigration officials knowingly released dozens of murderers and thousands of drunken drivers back into the U.S. in 2013, according to Obama administration statistics that could undercut the president's argument that he is trying to focus on the most serious criminals in his immigration enforcement. Published May 12, 2014

A member of Charlie Company of the U.S. Marines First Division, Eighth regiment, smokes a cigarette in Fallujah, Iraq, Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2004. U.S. forces punched into the center of the insurgent stronghold, overwhelming bands of guerrillas in the street with heavy barrages of fire and searching house to house in a powerful advance on the second day of a major offensive. (AP Photo/Los Angeles Times, Luis Sinco)

Military Marlboro men are still smokin'

Bristling at what they saw as the nanny state run awry, the House Armed Services Committee voted overwhelmingly this week to ensure that American troops serving overseas still can buy tobacco from base exchanges. Published May 8, 2014