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Cheyna Roth


Before becoming the newest Capitol reporter for the Michigan Public Radio Network, Cheyna Roth was an attorney. She spent her days fighting it out in court as an assistant prosecuting attorney for Ionia County. Eventually, Cheyna took her investigative and interview skills and moved on to journalism. She got her masters at Michigan State University and was a documentary filmmaker, podcaster, and freelance writer before finding her home with NPR. 
 
Very soon after joining MPRN, Cheyna started covering the 2016 presidential election, chasing after Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, and all their surrogates as they duked it out for Michigan. Cheyna also focuses on the Legislature and criminal justice issues for MPRN. 
 
Cheyna is obsessively curious, a passionate storyteller, and an occasional backpacker. 
 
Follow her on Twitter at @Cheyna_R
 

Donald Trump
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President Donald Trump revved up his supporters in Grand Rapids last night on issues ranging from the Mueller investigation…to health care….to immigration.


Apple
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Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s plan to stop using school aid fund dollars for higher education could hit a roadblock.


Michigan State Senate
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Some Republican lawmakers in Lansing want to shorten the time period when a pregnant woman can get an abortion.  A bill in the Senate would make it a felony to perform abortions after 20 weeks of the probable conception.


Dana Nessel
Cheyna Roth / MPRN

It started last October.  More than 70 police officers, special agents, and government officials executed search warrants on each of the seven Catholic dioceses in Michigan simultaneously.  They loaded vehicles with boxes and filing cabinets – everything they could find related to potential sexual abuse by priests who have worked in Michigan from 1950 until now.  Attorney General Dana Nessel says Michigan is the first state to execute a search warrant on the Church in this way.  Now, Nessel says she expects her office’s investigation to last at least two years.   


Driving
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Michigan could become a completely hands-free driving state.  A new bill in the state House comes after Governor Gretchen Whitmer made distracted driving a priority during her State of the State address.


Gretchen Whitmer
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Governor Gretchen Whitmer will give her first State of the State address tonight.


Handcuffs
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State lawmakers are trying to once again raise the age of who is considered an ‘adult’ in the criminal justice system.


Michigan State Senate
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Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s plans to restructure the state Department of Environmental Quality could be over.


Gretchen Whitmer
Cheyna Roth / MPRN

Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s executive order to restructure the Department of Environmental Quality could be overturned before any changes are made.


Gavel
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A lawsuit contesting how Michigan has drawn its political district lines is headed for trial.  A 3-judge panel denied an attempt by Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson and the League of Women Voters of Michigan to settle the case out of court.


Michigan Capitol
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Lawmakers in Lansing are working on getting rid of the state’s tax on feminine hygiene products.  This isn’t the first attempt to get rid of the so-called “tampon tax.”


U.S. Capitol
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U.S. lawmakers announced the creation of a bipartisan task force Wednesday to fight PFAS chemicals.  A majority of the members on the task force are from Michigan.


Shutdown
J Sonder / flickr.com

Lawmakers in Lansing are contemplating ways to help furloughed federal employees get by until the government reopens.  There are thousands of federal employees in Michigan that haven’t been paid since December.


Michigan State Senate
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Democrats in the state Senate plan to try and undo a controversial bill that passed during last year’s lame duck session.


Cigarettes
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Some health advocates want to raise the minimum age for tobacco purchases.  The American Cancer Society also wants changes to make pricing for cancer treatments more fair in Michigan.


Updated at 7:23 p.m. ET

Students and faculty at Michigan State University have called for the resignation or firing of interim President John Engler almost from the day he was appointed. This week, they got their wish.

On Wednesday evening, MSU Board of Trustees member Dianne Byrum confirmed she had received a letter of resignation from Engler and that letter would be acted upon at the trustee meeting scheduled for Thursday morning.

Michigan House of Representatives
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The state Legislature returned last week to open its 100th session.


Michigan Capitol
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The Michigan Legislature will gavel in for its 100th session this week.  Lawmakers say they have one multi-billion dollar issue to tackle first.


Gretchen Whitmer
Cheyna Roth / MPRN

Michigan officially has a new governor.  Gretchen Whitmer was sworn in Tuesday on the Capitol steps. 


Michigan Capitol
Cheyna Roth / MPRN

Republicans in the state Legislature are trying to limit the powers of statewide offices that – come January – will flip to Democrats.  It's a strategy that's angered Democratic voters, and protestors have been flooding the state Capitol with chants like “We voted for blue, not for you.”. 


Less than a month after the midterm elections, Republican state lawmakers in Wisconsin and Michigan are working to limit the powers of newly elected Democrats in statewide office.

Just two days after the Nov. 6 election in Wisconsin, when Democrat Tony Evers beat two-term Republican Gov. Scott Walker, Wisconsin Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said a lame-duck session agenda was already taking shape.

The former president of Michigan State University was arraigned Monday on felony and misdemeanor charges surrounding her involvement with the school's handling of serial sexual predator, Larry Nassar. Attorneys for Lou Anna K. Simon say she pleaded not guilty, and plans to fight the charges. Officials say Simon lied to or mislead law enforcement officers about her knowledge of details about a Title IX investigation by the school into Nassar.

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