Tal Kopan, SF Chronicle

Tal Kopan

SF Chronicle

Washington, DC, United States

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Recent articles by Tal:

Activists, tourists and a drag performer: Impeachment hearing is a big draw

The hottest spot in Washington on Wednesday was a nondescript congressional office building. People from as far away as Alaska, California and Italy waited to get into the House impeachment hearing. → Read More

House lawmakers reach agricultural immigration deal

In a deal with major ramifications for California agriculture, a bipartisan group of lawmakers has agreed on a bill that would give legal status to hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrant farmworkers in exchange for stronger verification of employees’ immigration status. → Read More

Jerry Brown implores Washington to act on climate: 'California's burning'

Accusing Republicans of being “flat Earth” science deniers, former Gov. Jerry Brown defended California’s efforts to set higher fuel economy standards in the face of President Trump’s attempted rollback of such rules nationally, but called for far more dramatic action as well. → Read More

Kamala Harris' home evacuated in Los Angeles wildfire

Sen. Kamala Harris’ in Los Angeles was evacuated Monday because of the threat from the Getty Fire, which broke out overnight near Interstate 405 in the area of the Getty Center and was headed toward neighborhoods west and south of the freeway. → Read More

To talk impeachment, Nancy Pelosi embraces a Revolutionary

Thomas Paine has been a frequent presence in House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s public appearances of late. She has quoted the Revolutionary War-era author multiple times over the past year as saying, “The times have found us,” a phrase she turned to again as she announced a historic impeachment inquiry into President Trump. → Read More

Progress on climate change is happening

With the White House off-limits, climate activists are focusing their efforts on the state and local level — and it’s paying off. → Read More

Kamala Harris to hit campaign trail hard amid falling poll numbers

Campaign officials insisted the shift was part of a long-planned effort to reach Democrats “when voters are tuning in,” and follows months of focus on fundraising to be able to invest in early states. Harris’ goal, Communications Director Lily Adams said, is a top-three finish in the Iowa caucuses in February, the first voting in next year’s nomination process. → Read More

AG William Barr promotes immigration judges with high asylum denial rates

All six immigration judges promoted to an appellate body by Attorney General William Barr have higher asylum- denial rates than the national average. The new appeals judges, who will now make up more than a quarter of the appellate board, were appointed as the Trump administration works to speed up the immigration courts and narrow migrants’ use of asylum cases to come to the U.S. → Read More

Kamala Harris barnstorms Iowa in effort to build 2020 momentum

Kamala Harris’ campaign is hoping that building up in Iowa will provide a lasting spark for the California Democrat. She’s crossing the state in a five-day tour that’s a departure for any candidate who comes from a large state where retail politics aren’t emphasized. → Read More

Sen. Kamala Harris airing first TV ad of 2020 campaign in Iowa

California Sen. Kamala Harris is launching the first TV ad of her 2020 presidential campaign for the Democratic nomination, starting in the crucial first caucus state of Iowa. → Read More

Democrats facing bruising internal fight for the White House

Progressives and moderators will brawl until the convention over the best way to deliver health care. Former Vice President Joe Biden tops the polls, but he’s going to have to defend decisions made over five decades in politics — including some that have not aged well. And the most diverse field of candidates in presidential history will ensure that issues long ignored will be discussed. → Read More

Look for aggressive Democratic debates. It’s some candidates’ last chance

The first 10 candidates tangle Tuesday, when Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Sen. Bernie Sanders will be the headliners competing to be the leading voice for progressive positions. Wednesday’s lineup features former Vice President Joe Biden, who leads in most polls, and California Sen. Kamala Harris, who dominated their matchup in the first debate. → Read More

Gilroy Garlic Festival shooting: Spotlight on congressional inaction on guns

The mass shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival put a fresh spotlight on the inability of Congress to pass gun violence prevention legislation, as Democrats urged the Republican-controlled Senate to take up measures the House approved to expand background checks for firearms buyers. → Read More

Kamala Harris unveils Medicare for All plan ahead of Democratic debate

Sen. Kamala Harris unveiled her version of a Medicare for All health care plan Monday, seeking to gain high ground going into the next presidential debate on an issue that has at times tripped up her campaign. She would make the phase-in period significantly longer than proposed by Sen. Bernie Sanders, whose congressional legislation is the flagship proposal for Medicare for All, and suggests… → Read More

Ninth Circuit ruling could wipe out hundreds of family separations convictions

A ruling by the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals could bolster critics’ argument that the Trump administration is misusing the law to criminalize well-intentioned asylum seekers. It also adds further questions to the administration’s widely criticized prosecutions of criminal cases that resulted in thousands of family separations last year. → Read More

Will Robert Mueller offer fireworks? Bay Area lawmakers will play a key role in the questioning.

Democrats hope that when he testifies Wednesday, former Special Counsel Robert Mueller will offer politically valuable on-camera recitations of the Trump campaign’s interactions with Russians in 2016 and instances of President Trump’s possible obstruction of justice. → Read More

ICE arrests of immigrant families lagged behind hype

For the first week of Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s arrest surge targeting recently arrived migrant families, 35 people were picked up, ICE said . Of those, 18 w ere people arrested as part of family units and 17 were individuals who were picked up because ICE came across them during the operations. ICE had targeted more than 2,000 families nationwide for arrest. → Read More

New rules will give AG William Barr more say over immigration courts

Attorney General William Barr has moved forward with a regulation changing the way immigration courts handle appeals, expanding the ability of that court to issue decisions that bind the way all immigration judges must decide cases. → Read More

Kamala Harris' debate challenge: prepared but not over-rehearsed

The second night of the Democratic presidential debates will feature California’s contenders, Sen. Kamala Harris and Rep. Eric Swalwell. Both have spent the week on location in Miami preparing for the debate, and both are approaching the night as a chance to introduce themselves to millions of voters. → Read More

First presidential debate spots at stake: Eric Swalwell on the bubble?

The Democratic National Committee has capped the first debate at 20 candidates, setting a polling and donor threshold to make the stage. Twenty hopefuls have already qualified, including California Sen. Kamala Harris and Dublin Rep. Eric Swalwell. But Swalwell’s spot may not be assured. → Read More