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government

Updated at 11:00 p.m. ET

For months, Democrats in Congress have criticized and questioned FBI Director James Comey about his handling of last year's investigation into Hillary Clinton's private email server.

Still, they've met President Trump's surprising Tuesday evening decision to fire Comey with near-universal outrage.

The halfway mark has come and gone in Washington’s 30-day special session of the legislature. But there’s still no deal on a budget or a school funding solution.

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray announces he will not run for re-election. He was flanked by supporters and officials at the Alki Beach Bathhouse on Tuesday.
KUOW photo/Amy Radil

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray said Tuesday he will not run for re-election as he deals with a sexual abuse lawsuit.

car young driver transportation
Flickr Photo/State Farm (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/fQcc5C

A bill signed by Governor Jay Inslee will reimburse caregivers or foster children for the costs associated with getting a driver's license.

It’s expensive to become a licensed driver in Washington state. There are permitting fees, driver's education classes, testing and insurance costs. 


Three national monuments in the Pacific Northwest are officially up for review. The Department of the Interior announced Friday that it’s opening up public comment periods for Hanford Reach, Cascade-Siskiyou and Craters of the Moon national monuments.

An Alaska Air 737 arrives at SeaTac as a flock of birds crosses.
Flickr Photo/Michael @ NW Lens (CC BY NC ND 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/2iJ6CS

In a new environmental action by the Jet City, officials in Seattle have committed to protecting the "Pacific Flyway" — the route migratory birds take from Alaska to Mexico, on which Seattle is a stopover.

An undocumented father outside the school where he works as a custodian.
KUOW photo/Liz Jones

Kim Malcolm talks with Pew Research Center demographer Jeff Passel about new population estimates about undocumented immigrants in the United States. 

KUOW Photo/Carolyn Adolph

The Kent Valley keeps its surprises hidden away and out of sight. Nothing is more well-hidden than the Federal Reserve Bank’s giant vault of money, set far off an isolated corner in an industrial park in Renton.

'Week in Review' panel Chris Vance, Bill Radke, Erica C. Barnett and Knute Berger.
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

Two Washington state Republicans voted against President Trump's health care bill, one voted in favor and one has better things to do and skips it altogether.

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray denies new allegations that he paid for sex.

Courtesy of Matthew Lipsen/Seattle University

In the newly-minted era of President Donald Trump, Washington State Governor Jay Inslee seems to be raring for a fight. He took a barrage of questions on a recent visit to Seattle University and seemed to relish the moment.

Twenty-five years ago, the 27th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified — nearly two centuries after it was written. The improbable story of how that happened starts with the Founding Fathers themselves and winds up at the University of Texas. And it's a heartening reminder of the power of individuals to make real change.

Spokane Republican Cathy McMorris Rodgers says the current Republican health care bill is only part of a larger plan.
Flickr Photo/Gage Skidmore (CC BY-SA 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/e4kQ16

Most Washington state lawmakers are dismayed about the House vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act. State insurance officials say it could lead to thousands of people losing their health insurance.


US Congress
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

Bill Radke talks to Margot Sanger-Katz, The New York Times reporter who covers health care for The Upshot, about the health care bill that passed the House and what happens next. 

Two weeks ago, a hashtag began going viral in India: #LahuKaLagaan. It literally means the tax on blood.

That would be India's tax on sanitary napkins — 12 to 15 percent on top of the 40 to 80 rupees (.60 cents to $1.25) for a package of eight. (Typically sold in an unmarked black plastic bag because India is not big on talking about menstrual topics.)

FLICKR PHOTO/hackNY.org (CC BY-SA 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/bHLu96

Bill Radke speaks with Seattle Times reporter Mike Carter about the case of Roman Seleznev. Seleznev's story reads like spy fiction. He is the illegitimate son of a prominent Russian politician and Putin ally. He grew up in poverty, with an alcoholic mother who died when he was a teenager. Without a mother and abandoned by his powerful father, 17-year-old Seleznev ended up living on the streets.

Seleznev went on to steal and sell hundreds of millions of dollars' worth of credit card numbers, many from businesses here in Washington state. U.S. authorities pursued Seleznev around the globe and finally, they arrested him and brought him to Washington for trial.

He was just convicted and sentenced to 27 years in prison.

Flickr Photo/Jude Matsalla (CC BY-NC-2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/drMj8G

Kim Malcolm talks with reporter Amber Jamieson about the green card lottery, which gives out 50,000 green cards each year through a lottery system. Jamieson, who's Australian, has entered the green card lottery for the past six years.

Updated at 3:15 p.m. ET.

FBI Director James Comey on Wednesday defended his decision to tell Congress in October that he was revisiting the bureau's investigation into Hillary Clinton's emails.

Testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Comey said he believed revisiting the investigation just before the election — knowing it could affect the outcome — would be really bad, but that not to do so would be catastrophic for the agency's independence. In retrospect, he said, he still believes he made the right choice.

It’s a bold move by Washington Realtors and other business groups. They’re taking on the number two Democrat in the Washington House with a TV ad that accuses him of “squeezing” taxpayers.

Will Seattle finally have an income tax?

May 2, 2017

On Monday the Seattle City Council unanimously passed a resolution to pursue an income tax on the richest households. This is the first step towards Seattle passing an ordinance that would impose a 1.5 percent tax on the incomes of those making over $250,000 a year.

Proponents say it could raise $125 million a year. But critics, including the Seattle Times Editorial Board said last week that this move hurts more than helps the city’s cause. 

KUOW host Bill Radke visits a gun range and learns how to shoot a sem-automatic weapon.
KUOW Photo/Shane Mehling

Bill Radke visits a gun range with journalist and gun advocate Dave Workman. Workman teaches Radke how to fire a semi-automatic weapon and explains why he supports second amendment rights. Workman also discusses why it's so important for him to carry a firearm. 

Updated at 11:20 p.m. ET

In her most frank remarks to date after her loss to President Trump, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton said that if not for a controversial letter from FBI Director James Comey and Russian meddling in the election, she would be sitting in the Oval Office right now.

President Trump just seems to have a thing for strongmen.

He invited the brutal Philippine leader, Rodrigo Duterte, to the White House during a "very friendly" phone call Sunday. On Tuesday, Trump has another call — this one with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Kshama Sawant
KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

Seattle officials have committed themselves to trying to adopt the city's first income tax. Monday, the City Council passed a resolution to start the process.

But the city faces legal uncertainty in this area. That's because the state Supreme Court once ruled an income tax unconstitutional, and no city or county has approved one ever since.

Marches in support of worker rights and labor unions are taking place around the world Monday, dubbed "May Day." Here in the U.S., they're expected to draw larger than usual crowds due to President Trump's efforts to crack down on immigration.

In heavily Latino Los Angeles, where labor unions also hold big sway, community organizers spent much of the last weekend doing last minute planning and logistics, as well as peacekeeping training.

Hunger in America can often seem invisible, but recent studies have shown that it is a problem that affects millions of people, many of them children.

Putting together a march on the National Mall is a demanding task, to put it mildly. And the organizers of the Women's March only had two months to put together an event that quickly grew from a Facebook post to a worldwide phenomenon.

"I think what's really interesting is we didn't necessarily have a lot of time to think about next steps," said activist Carmen Perez.

A proposal to tax sugary drinks like soda pop in Seattle passed Monday.
Flickr Photo/Mike Mozart (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/JwCQyB

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray's proposed soda tax will now include diet beverages.

Murray's original plan only included sugary drinks and received pushback. He said Thursday that the addition of diet drinks comes out of a desire for equity.

Police officers pause next to a sign outside a restaurant as they observe a May Day anti-capitalism march, Friday, May 1, 2015 in Seattle.
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

When you’re out marching on May Day in Seattle on Monday, remember how the tradition began: as an attempt to get workers an eight-hour day.

And then think about this: Some labor advocates say the eight-hour day is under attack in Congress.

KUOW PHOTO/BOND HUBERMAN

Weed is legal, but we're still figuring out how to talk about it around kids. State lawmakers do know this much: A billboard with a cat saying "IM SO HIGH RIGHT MEOW" goes too far.

Bertha has finally finished boring through the muck underneath downtown Seattle. Now comes the hard part: deciding how much drivers should have to pay to drive through a new tunnel.

San Juan Islands National Monument
KUOW Photo/Kara McDermott

Bill Radke speaks with the New York Times Seattle bureau chief Kirk Johnson about the latest executive order from President Donald Trump to review national monuments created in the past 20 years. There are two of those monuments here in Washington: the San Juan Islands National Monument and the Hanford Reach National Monument. 

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