News editor at Romper, journalist covering politics and foreign affairs. Obsessed with Justice Kagan’s wild Spider-Man ruling. Reach me here: melanie@bustle.com

This Is What We Owe To Nicaragua

It’s November and muggy — the sort of day during which you expend so much energy trying to fan away the blanket of heat that you end up sweating even more. In the middle of a crumbling courtyard, a group of Nicaraguan students has gathered to play a…
By Melanie Schmitz

Don Lemon's New Year's Eve Hijinks

Don Lemon just can't catch a break. The CNN anchor came under fire again on Thursday night in New Orleans, Louisiana, after some choice on-air New Year's reporting turned into a bit of a boozy melee, with co-anchor Brooke Baldwin there to watch it…
By Melanie Schmitz

Who's The "Biggest Jerk" In The Foreign Service?

Even the most polished of diplomats can fall victim to the gossip trap, it seems. In the State Department's most recent Hillary Clinton email dump, one missive between Clinton and longtime confidante Sidney Blumenthal showed that the presidential…
By Melanie Schmitz

NY Man's Terror Plot Foiled By Federal Authorities

New Year's Eve celebrations in Times Square went off largely without a hitch on Thursday evening, but federal authorities investigating an alleged terror plot said the mood could have been very different. Justice Department officials on Friday…
By Melanie Schmitz

At Least George Pataki Has Deez Nuts' Support

The road may be over for former New York Gov. George Pataki, but that doesn't mean he can't revel in the small things. In an interview with The Des Moines Register on Monday, 16-year-old Brady Olson, better known to voters as fake independent…
By Melanie Schmitz

Donald Trump Killed George Pataki's Campaign

It's official: George Pataki is out of the 2016 presidential race. After early reports surfaced on Tuesday, rumors that the former New York governor would be calling it quits were finally confirmed when Pataki himself took to the airwaves and…
By Melanie Schmitz

George Pataki Will Drop Out Of The 2016 Race

The field of 2016 GOP presidential candidates just got a little bit smaller. George Pataki is dropping out of the race, abandoning months of troubled campaigning and lackluster poll numbers. Pataki, who has spent the past five Republican debates…
By Melanie Schmitz

The Prosecutor's Disturbing Tamir Rice Quote

Tamir Rice was only 12 years old, but his size apparently made him look much older, as Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy McGinty told reporters Monday. That disturbing quote from McGinty's announcement encapsulated everything that was wrong with…
By Melanie Schmitz

No Charges In Tamir Rice Case

On Monday, a prosecutor in Cuyahoga County, Ohio announced that no charges would be filed in the case of Tamir Rice, a 12-year-old black boy shot by police in November 2014. A grand jury declined to indict either of the two officers who would…
By Melanie Schmitz

2015's Strangest Conspiracy Theories

If something seems too good to be true, it probably is — and sometimes, it's just plain nuts. Although 2015 brought with it a flurry of viral news and trends, ranging from the exhilarating to the downright heartbreaking, it also managed to drudge up…
By Melanie Schmitz

Bill Clinton's Childhood Home Damaged By Arsonists

Authorities in Hope, Arkansas confirmed late on Friday that former President Bill Clinton’s childhood home had been damaged in a fire, which might have been started intentionally. The house itself sustained minimal structural disturbance and no one…
By Melanie Schmitz

8 Ways Our Country Changed For The Better In 2015

A lot has happened in the past 12 months. Between the first few excited murmurings of the 2016 election roster to the possibility of a Donald Trump presidency potentially bookending the month of December, it sometimes feels like 2015 was the year of…
By Melanie Schmitz

Magnitude 6.3 Earthquake Strikes Afghanistan

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) on Friday confirmed that a magnitude 6.3 earthquake had struck Afghanistan's northeast region, just across the border from neighboring Tajikistan. According to early reports, tremors could be felt as far…
By Melanie Schmitz

Storm Damage In Mississippi, Tennessee — PHOTOS

A deadly storm system rocked the southern states of Mississippi, Tennessee, and Arkansas this week, killing at least 10 and injuring 40. Although the National Weather Service was able to confirm a total of at least 14 separate tornado touchdowns…
By Melanie Schmitz

Bergdahl, After His First Escape Attempt — PHOTO

A viral tweet that eventually became fodder for masses of Americans looking to take apart Bowe Bergdahl's story of Taliban captivity may have had a much darker back story than previously understood. On Thursday, during season two, episode three of…
By Melanie Schmitz

5 Rumors About Bowe Bergdahl That Serial Debunked

In the six years between his Taliban capture in 2009 to the time of his arraignment on desertion charges this past Tuesday, there have been plenty of rumors about Bowe Bergdahl that were later debunked as false or clarified by intelligence officials…
By Melanie Schmitz

Lindsey Graham's Withdrawal Should Concern America

The 2016 White House race is officially over for Lindsey Graham. In a video announcement posted to his official YouTube page on Monday, the South Carolina senator declared that he would no longer be seeking the presidency, offering his fellow…
By Melanie Schmitz

Who Was Jessica Valenzuela?

Tragedy struck the Las Vegas strip on Sunday night after a car plowed into a group of pedestrians, killing one and injuring dozens more. Among the crash victims was Jessica Valenzuela, 32, of Buckeye, Arizona, who died when the 1996 Oldsmobile sedan…
By Melanie Schmitz

Clinton's Risky "First Gentleman" Comments

If Hillary Clinton has a say, the role of first lady could evolve into something much more complex in the future. When pushed on the topic during Saturday's third Democratic primary debate, Clinton's "first gentleman" comments ended up stealing the…
By Melanie Schmitz

Jeb Bush's Uncomfortable Dem Debate Tweet

During Saturday's Democratic primary debate, the three candidates eagerly spent the majority of the first half debating the topic of ISIS and the realities of foreign policy going forward. Despite their passionate responses, it was GOP candidate Jeb…
By Melanie Schmitz