Jessica Taylor

Jessica Taylor is a political reporter with NPR based in Washington, DC, covering elections and breaking news out of the White House and Congress. Her reporting can be heard and seen on a variety of NPR platforms, from on air to online. For more than a decade, she has reported on and analyzed House and Senate elections and is a contributing author to the 2020 edition of The Almanac of American Politics and is a senior contributor to The Cook Political Report.

Before joining NPR in May 2015, Taylor was the campaign editor for The Hill newspaper. Taylor has also reported for the NBC News Political Unit, Inside Elections, National Journal, The Hotline and Politico. Taylor has appeared on MSNBC, Fox News, C-SPAN, CNN, and she is a regular on the weekly roundup on NPR's 1A with Joshua Johnson. On Election Night 2012, Taylor served as an off-air analyst for CBS News in New York.

A native of Elizabethton, Tennessee, she graduated magna cum laude in 2007 with a B.A. in political science from Furman University.

There may be no two more addicting topics to people right now than politics and true crime. A Star Spangled Scandal delves into both of these — with a heavy dose of sex added in — to show not only how this obsession is certainly nothing new in American history, but also its long-lasting effects throughout the decades.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez blasted "middle of the road" approaches on climate change, an apparent criticism of former Vice President Joe Biden.

Updated at 7:40 p.m. ET

The Senate intelligence committee has issued a subpoena to Donald Trump Jr., the president's eldest son, to testify again before the panel, according to a source familiar with the subpoena.

He met with the committee in December 2017 about his participation in a June 2016 meeting at Trump Tower with Russians offering "dirt" on Hillary Clinton.

Barbara Bush didn't want the title of Susan Page's The Matriarch to be called that.

The former first lady had instead suggested "The Fat Lady Sings Again" when the USA Today Washington bureau chief and veteran journalist asked her what she thought the title should be. Page conducted several interviews with Bush just ahead of her death almost a year ago.

Updated at 7:27 p.m. ET

The Democratic National Committee will not allow Fox News to broadcast any of its 2020 presidential primary debates, citing a recent report about the close relationship between the Trump administration and the conservative cable network.

"I believe that a key pathway to victory is to continue to expand our electorate and reach all voters. That is why I have made it a priority to talk to a broad array of potential media partners, including FOX News," DNC Chairman Tom Perez said in a statement Wednesday.

Updated at 8:07 p.m. ET

A federal judge has ruled that President Trump's former 2016 campaign chairman Paul Manafort intentionally lied to special counsel Robert Mueller's office after agreeing to cooperate with its investigation into interference by Russia into the last presidential election.

The ruling from Judge Amy Berman Jackson means prosecutors are no longer bound by their plea deal with Manafort, who now faces the prospect of spending the rest of his life in prison.

Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey is the latest Democrat to enter the increasingly crowded race for the White House, making the initial announcement with a message of unity.

Updated at 9:10 a.m. ET

California Sen. Kamala Harris is running for president in 2020. The first-term Democratic senator made the announcement on ABC's Good Morning America Monday morning.

"I love my country, and this is a moment in time that I feel a sense of responsibility to fight for the best of who we are," Harris said.

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Updated at 8:15 p.m. ET

President Trump unloaded on both Justice Department special counsel Robert Mueller and Attorney General Jeff Sessions, hours after federal agents raided the office of Trump's longtime personal attorney Michael Cohen.

"It's a disgraceful situation. It's a total witch hunt," Trump said on Monday. "When I saw this, when I heard about it, that is a whole new level of unfairness."

Updated at 4:05 p.m. ET

If the answer is, "This longtime Jeopardy! host has been chosen to moderate a Pennsylvania gubernatorial debate this fall," then the question is, "Who is Alex Trebek?"

It's a no-go from Oprah for 2020.

Oprah Winfrey, the media mogul and actress who spurred buzz of a White House bid with her stirring speech at the Golden Globes this month, told InStyle that she isn't interested in being president.

"I've always felt very secure and confident with myself in knowing what I could do and what I could not. ... I don't have the DNA for it," Winfrey told the magazine.

When Donald Trump announced he would be running for president, he didn't seem like the obvious candidate for evangelical voters, given his multiple divorces, use of crass language and one-time admission that he had never asked God for forgiveness.

Nonetheless, he did manage to coalesce 81 percent of white evangelical voters behind him in November.

Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake wrote his new book Conscience of a Conservative: A Rejection of Destructive Politics and a Return to Principle in secret, not even telling his closest political advisers about his plans until it was ready. And given the political test he'll face over the coming year, it isn't hard to see why.

Updated at 9:45 p.m.

Former first lady Michelle Obama might find some of the latest actions by the Trump administration pretty difficult to stomach.

On Monday newly minted Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced a rollback of school lunch standards championed by the former first lady, declaring at a Virginia school that the administration would "Make School Meals Great Again."

Two separate high-profile incidents broadcast this week highlighted the criticism black women regularly face in the workplace and spurred many to share their own experiences on social media.

"It's high time that people recognize it's not just happening on television — it's happening at the cube right next to them, and they have something they can do about it," says educator and activist Brittany Packnett.

Updated Feb. 3 at 4:45 p.m. ET

On Thursday the GOP-controlled House voted to overturn an Obama administration rule designed to keep firearms out of the hands of some people deemed mentally ill.

The action was the latest move by congressional Republicans to undo several of President Obama's regulations on issues such as gun control and the environment through an arcane law called the Congressional Review Act.

Updated Dec. 15, 11:30 a.m. ET

President-elect Donald Trump has selected Montana Rep. Ryan Zinke to be his interior secretary, the transition team announced Thursday morning.

Zinke is a first-term congressman and a former Navy SEAL commander who served in Iraq and was awarded two Bronze Stars. He was re-elected to a second term last month with 56 percent of the vote.

Vice President-elect Mike Pence was presumably seeking a quiet night out at the theater, enjoying one of Broadway's hottest tickets with a Friday night performance of Hamilton: An American Musical.

What he got instead was a welcome of boos and cheers from the crowd and a pointed plea from the diverse cast and crew afterwards about what they believe really makes America great.

After the wildest 48 hours yet in the presidential campaign, the second debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton began in the same fashion. The two even declined the traditional handshake at the outset, setting the tenor for the evening.

And throughout the next 90 minutes, the two interrupted each other, called the other a liar and lobbed plenty of personal digs.

Editor's note: This post contains language that is crude and explicit and that many will find offensive.

Just two days before Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are set to meet for their second presidential debate, more damaging audio of the GOP nominee using crude language about women and how he would hit on them has surfaced.

Indiana Republican Gov. Mike Pence and Virginia Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine met Tuesday evening for the only vice presidential debate of 2016. Many expected the 90-minute face-off at Longwood University in Farmville, Va., to be a cordial affair, and it largely was, but each came armed with plenty of barbs to throw at the other.

Ted Cruz suspended his presidential bid Tuesday night after a disappointing Indiana loss, clearing the way for Donald Trump to be the likely Republican nominee.

"From the beginning I've said that I would continue on as long as there was a viable path to victory," Cruz told supporters gathered in the Hoosier State. "Tonight I'm sorry to say it appears that path has been foreclosed."

"With a heavy heart but with boundless optimism for the long-term future of our nation, we are suspending our campaign," he said.

The real White House West Wing felt a bit like the fictional one at the center of the NBC television series The West Wing for a brief moment on Friday afternoon.

Posing as her character C.J. Cregg, who was the press secretary in the critically acclaimed show that ran from 1999 until 2006, actress Allison Janney took a surprise turn on the podium to the delight and surprise of the real White House press corps.

Fundraising is one of the most concrete indicators we have of whether campaigns are catching fire and how well they're allocating their funds — and for several White House hopefuls, the news isn't good.

Among the standouts from the newly released third-quarter fundraising numbers, there are some sober truths to be derived for several candidates — your campaign is on life support. Here are some hopefuls who should be very, very worried.

Lincoln Chafee

Republicans handed more ammo to Hillary Clinton on Wednesday, with another congressman suggesting the purpose of the House Benghazi committee was to harm the Democrat's presidential bid.

New York Rep. Richard Hanna was the latest to fuel the fire, telling local radio station WIBX:

Biding his time may have cost Joe Biden after Tuesday's Democratic primary debate — but it could also be a welcome relief for the would-be candidate who never really seemed like he wanted to be a candidate.

As the vice president continues a Hamlet-like exploration of a White House bid, his self-imposed deadlines have come and gone, and yet he appears no closer to making a final decision.

A bruised Hillary Clinton will have much to prove as she takes the debate stage Tuesday evening alongside four of her Democratic presidential challengers. The former secretary of state has been damaged by lingering questions about her private email server and doubts about her trustworthiness.

That has partly enabled Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders to ride a wave of progressive support to a lead over her in New Hampshire and an impressive $25 million fundraising haul last quarter.

#NPRreads is a weekly feature on Twitter and on The Two-Way. The premise is simple: Correspondents, editors and producers from our newsroom share the pieces that have kept them reading, using the #NPRreads hashtag. On Fridays, we highlight some of the best stories.

This week, we bring you three items.

From Sam Sanders, a reporter on NPR's Washington Desk:

The nail in the coffin of House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy's hopes of being the next speaker was opposition from the House Freedom Caucus. The rogue conservative group of about 30 members instead wants it to be Florida Rep. Daniel Webster.

But Webster might not even be coming back to the House in 2017, thanks to a redrawing of his congressional district that might make it unwinnable for the GOP.

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