Benjamin Swasey | WAMC

Benjamin Swasey

Ben Swasey is a deputy editor on the Washington Desk, covering politics and voting.

A Massachusetts native, Swasey was previously a political editor and digital manager at WBUR in Boston.

An attempt by West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin to float a compromise proposal on Democratic-led efforts to enact sweeping voting and election reforms was swiftly criticized by the chamber's Republican leader on Thursday.

Updated June 14, 2021 at 10:19 PM ET

The Democratic-led House Judiciary Committee will open an investigation into efforts by the Trump-era U.S. Department of Justice to seize metadata from devices belonging to members of Congress, journalists and the then-White House counsel.

Word of the partisan probe came as current Attorney General Merrick Garland, said the DOJ will "strengthen" its policies on obtaining records from lawmakers.

Combating the coronavirus pandemic has been job one for the Biden administration's first 100 days.

President Biden leaned into the 100-day marker, setting goals for vaccinations and in-person schooling, and asking Americans to mask up for the three-plus months.

So with Biden's first 100 days in office ending this week, here's a quick look back at the pandemic's course, using the simple metrics of cases, deaths and vaccinations.

Former President Barack Obama and former first lady Michelle Obama say a Minneapolis jury "did the right thing" in convicting former police officer Derek Chauvin of murdering George Floyd.

Though they said that justice was done in this case, the nation's first Black president and his wife said in a statement, "we know that true justice is about much more than a single verdict in a single trial."

They added:

While the debate and recriminations over Georgia's controversial new election law continue, some attention turns elsewhere, to other states where lawmakers are similarly weighing contested voting legislation.

President Biden this week unveiled a massive infrastructure proposal that he says would deliver a "once-in-a-generation investment" in the United States.

Here are six key numbers from the wide-ranging measure:

$2 trillion

The plan's overall estimated price tag.

Updated March 31, 2021 at 1:31 PM ET

Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz, a controversial conservative and boisterous ally of former President Donald Trump's, confirmed Tuesday he is being investigated by the Department of Justice over sexual misconduct but denied the allegations tied to the probe.

The Biden administration has announced that it will begin shipping about 1 million COVID-19 vaccine doses a week directly to thousands of pharmacies in an attempt to address equity concerns and speed up the country's crucial inoculation effort.

The vaccines sent to pharmacies will be in addition to the millions of doses sent weekly to states, territories and tribes and that are sometimes administered at local pharmacies.

Updated at 5:46 p.m. ET

President Biden announced Tuesday that his administration is working to purchase an additional 200 million doses of the two COVID-19 vaccines that have been authorized for emergency use, with the goal, the White House says, of having enough vaccine supply for the entire adult U.S. population by the end of the summer.

He also announced steps to increase vaccine doses going to state and local governments over the next three weeks, and to provide them more clarity going forward about how much supply they should expect.

President Trump has become the only president in U.S. history to be impeached twice.

The Democratic-led U.S. House of Representatives delivered the historic rebuke to Trump on Wednesday afternoon — exactly one week after his supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol building in a rampage that led to five deaths, including that of a Capitol Police officer.

Updated at 8:10 p.m. ET

President-elect Joe Biden is tapping Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, a Biden ally with deep ties to unions, as his labor secretary.

The Democrat campaigned for the White House saying he'd be the "most pro-union president you've ever seen."

Updated at 9:30 p.m. ET

President Trump on Sunday night signed a massive coronavirus relief and spending package, relenting on a measure he had called a "disgrace" days earlier.

The legislation, which combines $900 billion in COVID-19 aid with government funding through September 2021, was passed by large majorities in both chambers of Congress on Dec. 21 — only to see Trump blindside legislators the next day and blast the bill.

In a statement Sunday night, Trump said lawmakers will pursue some of his sought-after changes.

In a contest with historic turnout, President-elect Joe Biden topped President Trump by nearly 7 million votes, and 74 votes in the Electoral College, but his victory really was stitched together with narrow margins in a handful of states.

Updated at 7:25 p.m. ET

President-elect Joe Biden on Sunday named seven women to key communications roles in his incoming White House. His transition team says it's the first time in history that the positions will be filled entirely by women.

President-elect Joe Biden said in a statement that "it's time for America to unite," after he was declared the winner of the presidency by The Associated Press.

Biden will address the nation Saturday at 8 p.m. ET and will be joined by the vice president-elect, Kamala Harris, and their spouses.

Updated at 12:40 p.m. ET

You're probably anxious about the results, but patience may truly be a virtue on election night.

Democrats enter the presidential contest's homestretch with a big cash advantage.

President Trump's campaign announced late Thursday that it, the Republican National Committee and joint committees raised $248 million in September — a strong haul but nonetheless well behind the record-setting one-month sum collected by Joe Biden's campaign and his party.

Updated at 1:29 p.m. ET

President Trump's positive coronavirus test adds him to a growing list of world leaders who've contracted the virus that causes COVID-19.

Updated at 8:40 p.m. ET

A New York Times investigation published on Sunday said that President Trump paid just $750 in federal income taxes each year in 2016 and 2017, which the president denied at a news conference using a familiar retort: "fake news."

The Times cites Trump's long-sought-after tax returns, further reporting that he paid no income taxes at all in 10 of the previous 15 years as Trump reported massive losses to his businesses.

Maine Republican Sen. Susan Collins says the nomination of a Supreme Court justice to fill the vacancy left by the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg should be made by whichever candidate wins the presidential election.

Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris and her husband, Doug Emhoff, stopped outside the Supreme Court Saturday morning, following the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

"Justice Ginsburg was a titan—a relentless defender of justice and a legal mind for the ages," Harris said in a tweet. "The stakes of this election couldn't be higher. Millions of Americans are counting on us to win and protect the Supreme Court—for their health, for their families, and for their rights."

Football and the presidential campaign have intersected yet again.

President Trump on Wednesday cheered the Big Ten Conference's decision to resume its college football season in late October.

President Trump and Republicans could've set a one-month fundraising record — had their Democratic counterparts not hauled in some $150 million more.

The president's campaign, the Republican National Committee and their joint fundraising efforts raised a combined $210 million last month, they announced on Wednesday.

Updated at 11:30 p.m. ET

Massachusetts Sen. Ed Markey has fended off the highest-profile Democratic primary challenge of his decades in federal office, defeating the rising Rep. Joe Kennedy III, a member of the state's legendary political dynasty.

Kennedy conceded the contest nearly two and a half hours after polls closed Tuesday night. The Associated Press projected Markey as the winner a short time later.

Updated at 3:19 p.m. ET

National convention planning for Republicans and Democrats continued to evolve on Wednesday, as the parties try to adapt their nominating events, which are typically filled with throngs of people, to the realities of the ongoing pandemic.

Updated at 8:41 a.m. ET

Cori Bush, a nurse and Black Lives Matter activist, has ousted longtime Missouri U.S. Rep. William Lacy Clay in a Democratic primary, according to The Associated Press.

It's the latest example of a progressive challenger topping a long-tenured Democratic incumbent.

Voters head to the polls in a handful of states Tuesday, in the latest tests of voting systems stressed by the ongoing pandemic.

Teams in the National Basketball Association, the American pro sports league long most vocal on social justice issues, are stepping up their civic participation, as three have now volunteered their facilities to serve as voting sites amid the pandemic.

The development comes as local election officials, especially those in major metropolitan areas, frantically search for places that are centrally located and big enough to allow voters to social distance while waiting in line and casting their ballots.

Updated at 4:48 p.m. ET

A video shared by President Trump on Twitter Sunday includes a man who appears to be a Trump supporter saying "white power" in response to protesters.

In the video, apparently taken at The Villages, a retirement community in Florida, people wearing Trump shirts and with Trump signs on their golf carts drive by protesters yelling insults at them and about the president.

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