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.

The candidates in the top 1% have accounted for about 78% of the ad spending in the presidential race so far, according to new numbers.

The two self-funding billionaires in the Democratic primary, former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg and activist business executive Tom Steyer, have spent the most by far — a combined $320 million, out of $409.8 million spent in the presidential contest up to Jan. 13.

The impeachment of President Trump has revived interest in the first president ever to be impeached over 150 years ago, Andrew Johnson.

In Greeneville, Tenn., the site where Johnson's former home is preserved has seen a recent surge in visitors, similar to a spike around the time that former President Bill Clinton was impeached in 1998.

Embattled California Republican Rep. Duncan Hunter is set to resign from Congress on Jan. 13 after pleading guilty last month to misusing campaign funds.

Hunter had long decried the charges against him as politically motivated, but in early December he struck a deal to plead to just one count of illegal use of campaign funds. He later said he would resign "Shortly after the Holidays."

Updated at 2:19 p.m. ET

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has officially invited President Trump to deliver his annual State of the Union address on Feb. 4.

"In their great wisdom, our Founders crafted a Constitution based on a system of separation of powers: three co-equal branches acting as checks on each other. To ensure that balance of powers, the Constitution calls for the President to 'from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union,' " Pelosi writes.

The sixth Democratic primary debate has shaped up to be the smallest — and least diverse — so far of the 2020 campaign.

Just seven candidates have qualified per Democratic National Committee requirements: former Vice President Joe Biden; South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg; Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar; Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders; billionaire businessman Tom Steyer; Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren; and nonprofit executive Andrew Yang.

Businessman Andrew Yang has qualified for the sixth Democratic primary debate next week.

The upstart entrepreneur and nonprofit executive becomes the seventh — and likely final — candidate to make the Dec. 19 debate cut. He reached the polling threshold after a Quinnipiac University poll was released Tuesday.

At the start of President Trump's term, Republicans had solidified control in Washington and their hold on state governments across the country, with 33 GOP governors in power. Democrats were at their lowest numbers in nearly a century — down to just 16 Democratic governors and having control of only 13 state legislatures.

In a reversal, embattled Rep. Duncan Hunter is now set to plead guilty to misusing campaign donations, likely ending the California Republican's political career.

Hunter told local TV station KUSI in an interview that he has struck a deal to plead guilty to one count of illegal use of campaign funds. He's due in federal court on Tuesday.

"It's important not to have a public trial for three reasons, and those three reasons are my kids," Hunter said.

The military dog who helped U.S. special forces kill ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi last month was honored as a hero at the White House on Monday.

Conan, a Belgian Malinois military service dog, was honored in the Rose Garden by President Trump, who called the canine "incredible" and "brilliant." Vice President Pence and first lady Melania Trump also attended.

"Conan did a fantastic job and we're very honored to have Conan here and to have given Conan a certificate and an award," Trump said.

It turns out running for president isn't typically a good investment.

Only one major self-funding candidate — Donald Trump — has ever won the Oval Office. Still, some Democratic hopefuls are trying.

The primary already features two wealthy businessmen almost entirely self-funding their campaigns: Tom Steyer and John Delaney. Another billionaire, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, is looking at jumping into the race. Nonetheless, history shows that whether running for the White House or another office, candidates bankrolling their own bids are rarely successful.

As the Founding Fathers were drafting the U.S. Constitution, they were explicitly trying to avoid a repeat of the situation they had just fought a war to free themselves from — a ruler with unchecked power.

While they wrote a bare minimum about impeachment in the country's essential governing document, other writings from the time provide rich insights about their intentions.

More than a week after Election Day, Republican Gov. Matt Bevin is conceding the Kentucky gubernatorial election to Democratic Attorney General Andy Beshear after a recanvass failed to significantly change the close final margin.

"We are going to have a change in the governorship based on the vote of the people," Bevin said at an afternoon news conference.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick is officially joining the 2020 Democratic presidential race less than three months before voters start casting ballots.

"I admire and respect the candidates in the Democratic field. They bring a richness of ideas and experiences and depth of character that makes me proud to be a Democrat. But if the character of the candidates is an issue in every election, this time is about the character of the country," Patrick said in an announcement video published online Thursday morning.

Ten Democratic candidates will debate next week in the fifth primary face-off, which has increasing importance, with presidential hopefuls set to face voters in fewer than three months.

With the House set to begin public hearings Wednesday for the impeachment inquiry into President Trump, the man leading the Democrats' investigation says he already sees several potential impeachable offenses Trump has committed, including bribery.

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