Richard Gonzales

Richard Gonzales is NPR's National Desk Correspondent based in San Francisco. Along with covering the daily news of region, Gonzales' reporting has included medical marijuana, gay marriage, drive-by shootings, Jerry Brown, Willie Brown, the U.S. Ninth Circuit, the California State Supreme Court and any other legal, political, or social development occurring in Northern California relevant to the rest of the country.

Gonzales joined NPR in May 1986. He covered the U.S. State Department during the Iran-Contra Affair and the fall of apartheid in South Africa. Four years later, he assumed the post of White House Correspondent and reported on the prelude to the Gulf War and President George W. Bush's unsuccessful re-election bid. Gonzales covered the U.S. Congress for NPR from 1993-94, focusing on NAFTA and immigration and welfare reform.

In September 1995, Gonzales moved to his current position after spending a year as a John S. Knight Fellow Journalism at Stanford University.

In 2009, Gonzales won the Broadcast Journalism Award from the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. He also received the PASS Award in 2004 and 2005 from the National Council on Crime and Delinquency for reports on California's juvenile and adult criminal justice systems.

Prior to NPR, Gonzales was a freelance producer at public television station KQED in San Francisco. From 1979 to 1985, he held positions as a reporter, producer, and later, public affairs director at KPFA, a radio station in Berkeley, CA.

Gonzales graduated from Harvard College with a bachelor's degree in psychology and social relations. He is a co-founder of Familias Unidas, a bi-lingual social services program in his hometown of Richmond, California.

Updated at 9:02 p.m. ET

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Monday the Trump administration's latest pro-Israel change in U.S. policy, saying the State Department is rescinding a 1978 department legal opinion that viewed settlements in the Israeli-occupied West Bank as inconsistent with international law.

President Trump has issued pardons for two Army officers accused of war crimes in Afghanistan and restored the rank of a Navy SEAL who was acquitted of murder in Iraq.

"For more than two hundred years, presidents have used their authority to offer second chances to deserving individuals, including those in uniform who have served our country," said White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham in a statement released late Friday. "These actions are in keeping with this long history."

President Trump is appealing to the U.S. Supreme Court to keep his personal tax records out of the hands of the House Oversight Committee, marking the second time in two days that he has challenged a subpoena for those documents.

The number of people apprehended by U.S. authorities, either attempting to cross the southwest border illegally or presenting themselves at a port of entry, declined for the fifth consecutive month, according to new figures released by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Just over 45,000 people were apprehended in October, down from a spike of 144,000 in May — an almost 70 percent decline.

Authorities also report a significant demographic shift among those apprehended.

President Trump is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to block New York prosecutors' subpoenas for his tax records, setting the stage for a legal showdown over the separation of powers and his personal finances.

The president's private lawyers are asking the high court to block New York County District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr.'s efforts to get eight years of Trump's tax records. A New York grand jury issued a subpoena directed not to the president personally, but to an accounting firm that has long dealt with his personal finances, Mazars USA.

A U.S. appeals court opened the door for Congress to gain access to eight years of President Trump's tax records, setting the stage for a likely review by the U.S. Supreme Court.

The full U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit declined to revisit an earlier ruling by a three-judge panel that allowed Congress to subpoena the president's tax records. The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee subpoenaed those records in March.

A day after increasingly tense clashes between police and protesters in Hong Kong, the U.S. State Department called on both sides to "exercise restraint" and seek "dialogue."

"‎We condemn violence on all sides, extend our sympathies to victims of violence regardless of their political inclinations, and call for all parties — police and protesters — to exercise restraint," said State Department spokesperson Morgan Ortagus in a statement issued late Monday.

Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced Thursday that he is running for his old Senate seat from Alabama, with a message in which he addressed head-on his rocky relationship with President Trump.

The self-driving Uber SUV involved in a crash that killed a Tempe, Ariz., woman last year did not recognize her as a jaywalking pedestrian and its braking system was not designed to avoid an imminent collision, according to a federal report released this week.

The conclusions by the National Transportation Safety Board were published ahead of a Nov. 19 meeting in Washington, D.C., called to discuss the cause of the crash and safety recommendations.

Two former employees of Twitter were charged with spying for Saudi Arabia by snooping into thousands of private accounts seeking personal information about critics of the Riyadh government, according to court documents filed Wednesday in San Francisco.

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission on Tuesday released its Oct. 16 order allowing T-Mobile to merge with Sprint in a $26.5 billion deal. The commissioners approved the deal last month on a closed-door, 3-2 party-line vote.

The merger was praised by Republican commissioners as a boon for rural America and by Democratic commissioners as a disaster for consumers. The merger still faces a legal challenge by a coalition of state attorneys general.

Novelist Ernest J. Gaines, acclaimed author of The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman, and other novels about the struggles of African Americans in rural Louisiana, died at his home in Oscar, La., Tuesday at the age of 86.

Gaines died in his sleep of cardiac arrest, according to The Associated Press, citing the Baton Rouge Area Foundation. He is survived by his wife Dianne Saulney Gaines, four stepchildren and nine siblings.

Updated on Nov. 18 at 6:50 p.m. ET

California authorities announced they seized more than $1.5 billion worth of illegal marijuana in fiscal year 2019, or the rough equivalent of the state's legal market for cannabis.

More than 953,000 plants were seized from 345 raided grow sites around the state. Authorities arrested 148 people and confiscated 168 weapons under California's Campaign Against Marijuana Planting program.

Starting Jan. 1, it will cost more money to be a Boy Scout.

The announcement, made public last week on the Boy Scouts official blog, Scouting Wire, comes in response to rising operating costs mainly associated with the group's liability insurance as it faces hundreds of lawsuits alleging past sex abuse of youths by scout leaders.

The Washington Nationals beat the Houston Astros 6-2 in Game 7 of the World Series in Houston.

It is the Nationals' first championship since the franchise moved to Washington, D.C., in 2005.

The Nationals are also the first team in MLB history to win the World Series by winning four games as the visiting team.

Washington won despite being dominated by Houston starter Zack Greinke for better than six innings. The Nationals scored all of their runs in the last three innings.

The head of U.S. Central Command, Gen. Frank McKenzie says the body of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was buried at sea after last weekend's commando raid in Syria in which he detonated a suicide vest, killing himself and two young children in order to avoid capture.

McKenzie, speaking at a Pentagon briefing, said the two children are believed to have been under the age of twelve. In their initial reports, U.S. officials had said that there were three children.

Updated Wednesday at 2:05 a.m. ET

The Washington Nationals avoided elimination by beating the Houston Astros 7-2 in Game 6 of the 2019 World Series, forcing a Game 7 in Houston on Wednesday.

But even a Series-defining Game 7 could have a tough time matching the tension and drama of Game 6 which featured a controversial call that appeared to kill — at least temporarily — a Washington rally.

Nationals starter Stephen Strasburg was the winning pitcher, lasting eight and a third innings, striking out seven while allowing only two runs on five hits.

Still in turmoil over if, when or how to leave the European Union, Britain will go back to the polls on Dec. 12 to elect a new Parliament that may, or may not, be able to settle on a Brexit plan.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson won support for a snap election Tuesday when the House of Commons voted 438-20 to dissolve Parliament and launch a six-week election campaign that will compete with Christmas for the attention of a divided and Brexit-exhausted electorate.

The Trump administration is extending protections from deportation to more than 200,000 Salvadoran citizens living and working in the United States in an announcement made Monday.

Under the program called Temporary Protected Status — usually reserved to help foreign nationals from countries embroiled in wars or facing natural disasters — thousands of Salvadorans were allowed to stay in the U.S. following earthquakes in 2001.

The Houston Astros beat the Washington Nationals 4-1 in Game 3 of the 2019 World Series in a game they had to win, breaking the Nationals' eight-game winning streak in the postseason.

Houston, trailing the series 2-0, led the scoring with an RBI single in the second inning by right-fielder Josh Reddick after shortstop Carlos Correa doubled off of Washington's starting pitcher Aníbal Sánchez.

Updated at 5 a.m. ET Thursday

The Washington Nationals beat the Houston Astros 12-3 in Game 2 of the 2019 World Series in Houston.

The Nationals broke through what had been a pitchers' duel in the seventh inning, sending 10 batters to the plate and scoring six runs.

The Nats opened the game by scoring two runs with a walk and a single, followed by a double by third baseman and Houston native Anthony Rendon off Astros ace Justin Verlander.

Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. has begun to cut power to about 179,000 customers in 17 counties in Northern California.

Updated at 1:35 a.m. ET Wednesday

The Washington Nationals beat the Houston Astros 5-4 in Game 1 of the 2019 World Series, led by Juan Soto who homered and doubled in his first Series game.

Soto also had a single and a stolen base to go with his 3 RBIs. The young standout turns all of 21 on Friday.

Iraqi security forces killed 149 people and wounded over 3,000 in protests that began Oct. 1, a government-appointed inquiry announced Tuesday.

The Iraqi military previously had admitted that its forces had used "excessive force" in attempting to quell protests against government corruption, high unemployment and the lack of basic services such as clean water and electricity.

The CEO of Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. told California energy regulators that the state will likely see blackouts for another 10 years like the one imposed last week that left as many as 800,000 customers without power.

The revelation by corporation CEO Bill Johnson came Friday at a California Public Utilities Commission meeting at which he said his company is trying to reduce the chances of wildfires by trimming more trees and using technology to target smaller areas of the grid when fire dangers require power outages.

Scientists cannot yet predict when the next deadly earthquake will strike, but emergency response authorities in California plan to unveil the first statewide quake warning system Thursday, which marks the 30th anniversary of the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake.

The warnings will be issued in two ways: a cellphone app called MyShake and the more traditional wireless notification system that sends out Amber Alerts.

A vacationing British family who crossed the U.S.-Canada border without authorization has been deported after spending nearly two weeks in federal detention, according to a lawyer for the family.

Attorneys for the family said the four adults and three children were en route back to the United Kingdom.

Beginning in early 2020, California will ban the sale of the pesticide chlorpyrifos which state environmental officials say has been linked to brain damage and other health defects in children.

Under an agreement reached with Corteva Agriscience, the maker of chlorpyrifos, sales of the pesticide will end Feb. 6, 2020, and agricultural growers will not be allowed to possess or use it after Dec. 31, 2020.

Additional fetal remains were discovered during a search of stored vehicles belonging to a deceased Illinois doctor who had performed abortions in neighboring Indiana clinics, according to investigators.

After Dr. Ulrich Klopfer died at the age of 79 in September, 2,246 medically preserved fetal remains in small plastic bags were discovered in his Chicago home by his wife who alerted authorities.

The number of migrants taken into custody after crossing the southern border declined for the fourth consecutive month, according to new figures released by the Trump administration.

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