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Valerie Richardson

Valerie Richardson

Valerie Richardson covers politics and the West from Denver. She can be reached at [email protected].

Articles by Valerie Richardson

Ground-up recycled tire crumbs cover this playground behind the K-2nd grade elementary Dickerson School in Chester, N.J. (Associated Press) ** FILE **

Playground spat looms as key church-state separation case

A playground spat over surfacing made out of scrap tires is looming as a pivotal church-state separation case, one that religious freedom advocates say could provide relief from what they see as government hostility toward faith. Published January 20, 2016

The new Michael Bay film "13 Hours," detailing the 2012 siege of the U.S. dipolamtic compound in Benghazi, Libya, continues a wave of conservative-oriented, pro-military films like "American Sniper." (Associated Press)

'13 Hours' pushes Benghazi back into spotlight, reignites debate

It's enough to turn Republicans into Hollywood fans: A big-budget action movie about the 2012 terrorist raid on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi hits theaters Friday, reigniting debate over former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's role in the deadly attack. Published January 14, 2016

FILE - In this Aug. 14, 2015 file photo, water flows through a series of sediment retention ponds built to reduce heavy metal and chemical contaminants from the Gold King Mine wastewater accident, in the spillway about a quarter mile downstream from the mine outside Silverton, Colo. New Mexico officials said Thursday, Jan. 14, 2016 that they plan to sue the federal government and the owners of two Colorado mines that were the source of a massive spill last year that contaminated rivers in three Western states. An EPA cleanup crew accidentally triggered the spill in August at the inactive Gold King mine near Silverton, Colo.(AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File)

New Mexico to sue EPA over toxic Gold King Mine spill

New Mexico announced Thursday that it plans to sue the Environmental Protection Agency over last year's massive mine spill that sent toxic orange sludge into the Animas and San Juan rivers. Published January 14, 2016