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Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan can be reached at [email protected].

Articles by Stephen Dinan

Nick Thomas, 53, of Phoenix holds a sign thanking President Obama at the Arizona Democratic Party in Phoenix on June 15, 2012, after the president announced the easing of enforcement of immigration laws, effective immediately. The new policy offers a chance for hundreds of thousands of younger illegal immigrants to stay in the U.S. and work. (Associated Press/The Arizona Republic)

Obama grants legal status to young illegal immigrants

The Obama administration said Friday it will stop deporting most illegal immigrant students and young adults in a campaign-year move that escalates the immigration debate to the fore. Published June 15, 2012

Rep. Lamar Smith (Associated Press)

Secret report: Catch and release for low-priority illegals proposed

U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the agency charged with guarding the U.S. borders, has written a secret draft policy that would let its agents catch and release low-priority illegal immigrants rather than bring them in for processing and prosecution. Published June 14, 2012

**FILE** Sen. Tom Coburn, Oklahoma Republican (Associated Press)

Feds use tax dollars to fund pet shampoo ad, reality show in India

Every year, the federal government spends hundreds of millions of dollars to market agricultural products abroad — sending taxpayers' money to subsidize the advertising campaigns of some of the country's largest brand names, according to a report by the Senate's chief waste-watcher. Published June 14, 2012

The Department of the Interior announced on Wednesday, June 13, 2012, that it will not declare the dunes sagebrush lizard an endangered species. Officials said voluntary efforts by New Mexico and Texas have headed off the need for the federal government to step in. (AP Photo/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

White House retreats on endangered species protection for lizard

The Obama administration backtracked Wednesday and announced it will not declare the dunes sagebrush lizard an endangered species, saying voluntary efforts by New Mexico and Texas have headed off the need for the federal government to step in. Published June 13, 2012

Democratic candidate Ron Barber celebrates his victory in a special election in Arizona Tuesday with Gabrielle Giffords, the congresswoman he succeeds, by his side. Mr. Barber easily topped Republican Jesse Kelly in a race in which both parties tested themes that will play out in the November election. (Associated Press)

Democrats jubilant after holding Giffords' seat

Democrats held onto former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords' Arizona House seat when voters picked one of her aides to succeed her, fending off a special-election challenge Tuesday that they said presages bigger wins in November. Published June 13, 2012

The Department of the Interior announced on Wednesday, June 13, 2012, that it will not declare the dunes sagebrush lizard an endangered species. Officials said voluntary efforts by New Mexico and Texas have headed off the need for the federal government to step in. (AP Photo/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

Feds backtrack on endangered-lizard listing

The Obama administration backtracked Wednesday and announced it will not declare the dunes sagebrush lizard an endangered species, saying voluntary efforts by New Mexico and Texas have headed off the need for the federal government to step in. Published June 13, 2012

** FILE ** Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, with law enforcement supporters behind her, signs immigration bill SB 1070 into law in Phoenix on April 23, 2010. (AP Photo)

Arizona prepares to enforce strict immigration law

Arizona is already gearing up to enforce its strict immigration law as it anticipates a favorable ruling from the Supreme Court sometime this month, with Gov. Jan Brewer issuing an executive order this week telling police to bone up on the details of the law. Published June 13, 2012

Former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and Democratic congressional candidate Ron Barber celebrate Mr. Barber's victory in a special election on Tuesday, June 12, 2012, in Tucson, Ariz., to fill the vacant House seat that Mrs. Giffords held. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, Pool)

Democrats hold Giffords seat in Arizona

Democrats kept former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords' seat in their fold Tuesday with Ron Barber, a one-time aide to Ms. Giffords, fending off a special-election challenge in Arizona's 8th District. Published June 13, 2012

** FILE ** Sen. Lindsey Graham, South Carolina Republican (The Washington Times)

GOP pushes for independent leak investigation

Trying to force the fight over intelligence leaks straight to the Senate floor, Republicans on Tuesday introduced a resolution that would put the chamber's members on record over whether they think an independent counsel is needed to look at the Obama administration. Published June 12, 2012

A Predator B unmanned aircraft lands after a mission in Texas in November. U.S. Customs and Border Protection uses the unmanned aircraft outfitted with powerful infrared cameras and sensitive radar to patrol U.S. borders. (Associated Press)

Border agency overextended on drone program

The Homeland Security Department ordered so many drones it can't keep them all flying and doesn't have a good plan for how to use them, according to a new audit the department's inspector general released Monday. Published June 11, 2012

** FILE ** Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. (Associated Press)

House moving to hold Holder in contempt

House Republicans said Monday that they will move to hold Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. in contempt of Congress, escalating a separation-of-powers battle over Fast and Furious, the Obama administration's botched gun-walking operation. Published June 11, 2012

Sen. John F. Kerry of Massachusetts has said he will offer an amendment to the farm bill to eliminate the new FSIS catfish-inspection office. (Associated Press)

GAO targets catfish program

In unusually blunt language, Congress' top auditor told the federal government last week to scrap plans for a special catfish-inspection program, saying the new office lawmakers approved just a few years ago is turning out to be a waste of money. Published June 10, 2012

Sen. Marco Rubio, Florida Republican (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)

TWT polls: Rubio is conservatives' top pick for Romney's running mate

Sen. Marco Rubio, the son of Cuban immigrants and a rapidly rising star in the Republican Party, emerged this weekend as the clear favorite potential vice presidential pick of conservative activists, according to two polls sponsored by The Washington Times. Published June 10, 2012

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr.'s relationship with Congress has grown testier than any other Cabinet secretary as he has fended off various inquiries. (Associated Press)

Congress, Holder put relationship to the test

Before Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. testified to the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday, the ranking Democrat had a warning for his colleagues on the panel: Play nice. Published June 7, 2012

** FILE ** Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney campaigns in St. Louis. Now that the primaries are effectively over, Mr. Romney has turned his attention to fundraising. (Associated Press)

Democrats 'got beat' in May fundraising

Mitt Romney and the Republican National Committee trounced President Obama and national Democrats in fundraising last month, according to numbers both campaigns released Thursday, signaling that the Republicans can compete on equal footing with the White House in November. Published June 7, 2012

President Obama speaks on Wednesday, June 6, 2012, at a campaign event at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Los Angeles. (Associated Press)

Romney, RNC top Obama, DNC in May fundraising

Mitt Romney and the Republican National Committee raised more in campaign donations than President Obama and the Democratic National Committee in May, according to the numbers both campaigns announced Thursday. Published June 7, 2012

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Republican (AP Photo)

GOP proposes one-year delay on new tax code

Congressional Republicans floated a deal Wednesday that would extend the Bush-era tax cuts through the end of 2013, which they said would give Congress and whoever occupies the White House next year a chance to work on a total overhaul of the tax code. Published June 6, 2012

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Kentucky Republican (AP Photo)

GOP floats one-year extension of tax cuts

Congressional Republicans on Wednesday floated the idea of a one-year extension of all of the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts, saying it will give the economy certainty and give Capitol Hill breathing space to take up a broader reform of the tax code next year. Published June 6, 2012

Democratic state Senate candidate John Lehman gives a high-five to a young supporter as he arrives for an election-night party at the Racine Labor Center in Racine, Wis., on Tuesday, June 5, 2012. (AP Photo/Scott Anderson, Journal Times)

Dems win control of Wisconsin Senate

Republican Gov. Scott Walker won his recall election, but he may have a tougher time getting things through the Wisconsin Legislature after Democrats appear to have successfully recalled a Republican state senator, which would flip the balance of power in the state. Published June 6, 2012

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker waves during his victory party on Tuesday, June 5, 2012, in Waukesha, Wis., after defeating Democratic challenger Tom Barrett in a special recall election. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

Walker, GOP win big in Wis. recall races

Wisconsin gave Gov. Scott Walker a renewed lease Tuesday, voting to keep the Republican in office in a recall election that amounted to an embrace of his union-busting, government-trimming agenda in this traditionally Democratic-leaning state. Published June 5, 2012