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Tom Howell Jr.

Tom Howell Jr.

Tom Howell Jr. covers politics and the White House for The Washington Times. He can be reached at

Articles by Tom Howell Jr.

D.C. officials felt impasse on Capitol Hill keenly

For the second time this year, D.C. officials drew up memos, planned inter-agency briefings and put vacation plans on ice while power brokers on Capitol Hill worked through a stalemate with major implications for the District. Published August 1, 2011

D.C. medical marijuana applicants must pass scrutiny

District officials are being painstakingly careful in proceeding with the city's medical-marijuana program, even rejecting applicants for such seemingly simple mistakes as failing to sign and date letters of intent to grow or dispense the drug. Published July 31, 2011

Gray appoints D.C. Taxicab Commission chairman

D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray on Wednesday appointed an urban planner with decades of experience in the capital region to take over the embattled D.C. Taxicab Commission. Published July 28, 2011

D.C. medical marijuana backers still waiting

Two D.C. patients' rights groups are decrying the absence of seeds in the ground to grow medical marijuana and a clear timetable for when patients can obtain the drug, though a full year has passed since Congress approved the program. Published July 26, 2011

Calls for D.C. Council’s Thomas to quit rise after payback pact

D.C. Council Chairman Kwame R. Brown declined Monday to join in calls for council member Harry Thomas Jr. to resign amid corruption investigations, instead urging Mr. Thomas to do "what is best for his family and his constituents." Published July 25, 2011

D.C. police department sets up gun dealer in its headquarters

The District of Columbia has cleared the way for its lone licensed gun dealer to set up shop in police headquarters, an unusual short-term fix to a problem that has left the city with a de facto ban on handguns and vulnerable to lawsuits by gun rights groups. Published July 20, 2011

Gray cites haste in assembling campaign

D.C. Mayor Vincent C. Gray on Tuesday responded to charges that his 2010 campaign team accepted cash donations over the $25 legal limit by converting them to money orders, attributing the possible slip-ups to aides during his "truncated" campaign. Published July 19, 2011

Lottery postpones online ‘demo’ games

The D.C. Lottery is tapping the brakes on every aspect of its unprecedented Internet gambling plans, even though city residents wouldn't have lost a dime by playing demo games initially slated to roll out this week. Published July 18, 2011

D.C. Council recess gives members time to reflect

The D.C. Council's two-month recess is expected to be a quiet departure inside city hall from the recently ended legislative session in which allegations of wrongdoing by several members created a tense and difficult situation. Published July 17, 2011

D.C. school system gets rid of 413 teachers, staff

The D.C. public schools system laid off 413 teachers and staff Friday for failing meet expectations in its teacher-evaluation system or falling short of other requirements. Published July 15, 2011

No summer break for some on D.C. Council

After spirited budget talks and scandals du jour emanating from City Hall in recent weeks, D.C. Council members have a summer recess to relax, barbecue and, in one case, show off a cocktail. Published July 14, 2011

D.C. report urges changes to celebrity escort policies

A Metropolitan Police Department escort for celebrity bad-boy Charlie Sheen in April was "not extraordinary," but highlighted the casual manner in which the agency documents and carries out such duties, according to a report released Wednesday by the D.C. Office of the Inspector General. Published July 13, 2011

D.C. Council OKs bond-tax delay

The D.C. Council narrowly passed a bill Tuesday that will keep the city from imposing a tax on residents who hold out-of-state bonds retroactively and without fair warning. Published July 12, 2011

D.C. Council Chair Brown rearranges committees

D.C. Council Chairman Kwame R. Brown on Tuesday shuffled the leadership of key council committees, leaving one member "baffled" and raising questions about political payback. Published July 12, 2011