Brett Neely

Brett Neely is an editor with NPR's Washington Desk, where he edits coverage of Congress, elections, campaign finance, government ethics and voting.

Neely came to NPR in 2015 and worked closely with a team of member station reporters throughout the 2016 election cycle as part of NPR's ongoing initiative to deepen its editorial ties with stations. After the 2016 election, he worked with member station colleagues to deepen coverage of state government and politics for local and national audiences.

Before coming to NPR, Neely was a reporter for Minnesota Public Radio News, based in Washington, where he covered Congress and the federal government for one of public radio's largest newsrooms. Between 2007 and 2009, he was based in Berlin where he worked as a freelance reporter for multiple outlets. He got his start in journalism as a producer for the public radio show Marketplace.

Neely graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Occidental College in Los Angeles with a bachelor's degree in international relations. He also received a master's degree in international relations from the University of Chicago. He is a fluent German speaker.

Updated at 9:40 am ET

Days before the Senate is set to hear from a woman who alleges Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh attempted to sexually assault her while in high school, Kavanaugh is denying fresh accusations from a college classmate who also alleges he acted inappropriately towards her.

Updated at 4:25 p.m. ET

A day after a key lawmaker said the U.S. government was not doing enough to take election interference by foreign powers seriously, the Trump administration responded forcefully with a surprise White House briefing to emphasize the breadth and extent of its election security initiatives.

"The president has taken decisive action to defend our election systems from meddling and interference," national security adviser John Bolton said at the briefing.

With less than four months to go, how much are this year's midterm elections at risk for the kind of interference sowed by Russia in 2016?

Updated at 3:29 p.m. ET

President Trump admitted Thursday to reimbursing his lawyer for a $130,000 payment made on the eve of the 2016 election to porn actress Stormy Daniels as part of a settlement about her alleged 2006 sexual encounter with Trump.

Trump, however, denied any sexual encounter and claims the payment was in no way connected with the campaign — despite the timing.

Updated at 8:30 p.m. ET

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg will testify on Capitol Hill on April 10 and 11 before the a joint hearing of the Senate Judiciary and Commerce Committees, followed by one before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, to answer questions about how the company protects its users' data.

Updated at 1:15 a.m. ET Thursday

An Amtrak train carrying House and Senate Republicans to their annual retreat in West Virginia struck a garbage truck Wednesday morning near Charlottesville, Va.

At least one person was killed, according to a statement released by White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.

Updated at 9:00 a.m.

Reaction to President Trump's first State of the Union speech followed the familiar choose-your-own-partisan-narrative script that's dominated political life since the 2016 election.

Republican members of Congress frequently offered safe, predictable praise particularly around economic policy. Said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.: "We're coming out of this economic funk that we were in throughout the Obama years and the president was right to talk about it and to take some credit for the direction America is heading in."

Updated at 10:01 p.m. ET

The Senate will vote at noon on Monday to end the government shutdown. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell took to the floor Sunday evening and laid out a plan to restore government funding for three weeks and consider immigration proposals, while bipartisan talks continue to end the impasse that has triggered a partial government shutdown since Friday night.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer objected to a vote on Sunday evening, but not the plan to vote on Monday.

For 20-odd hours, Virginia Democrats were giddy with the news that a recount had delivered Shelly Simonds a seat in the House of Delegates with a victory margin of a single vote. The Democratic win would mean a 50-50 party split in the House of Delegates, ending 17 years of Republican control and forcing a rare power-sharing agreement.

In odd-numbered years, Election Day consists of a hodgepodge of state, local and special elections.

But in an era when, to flip an old phrase, all politics is national, these low-profile, low-turnout elections might have a lot more to say about the direction of the country than may have been the case just a few years ago.

Two governors races and one president in the background

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