U.S. News: Major National News Stories of 2013

Updated August 5, 2020 | Infoplease Staff

Major National News Stories of 2013

by Jennie Wood
Wendy Davis

Wendy Davis

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2013 was the year of the Boston Marathon Tragedy. It was also a year where the government shut down for 16 days and Detroit filed bankruptcy. In 2013, Whitey Bulger got life in prison, George Zimmerman was acquitted and Bradley Manning came out as transgender. Filibusters were popular in 2013. Texas Senator Wendy Davis used it to postpone the passing of a law restricting abortion. Congress used it to delay approving the nomination of Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense. Later on in the year, the Senate limited the use of the filibuster. 2013 was a year of progress for same-sex marriage with the Supreme Court, several states and even the Pope taking a stand for the issue. Below were the major national news stories in 2013.

U.S. Government Closes for Business

A standoff over Obamacare resulted in 16-day government shutdown

Troubled Debut of the Affordable Care Act

Website glitches, cancelled insurance plans made for a rocky rollout of the Affordable Care Act

Detroit Files for Bankruptcy

In 2013, Detroit became the nation's largest public sector bankruptcy.

The Rise of Wendy Davis

A recap of how this yellow rose of Texas went from gutsy filibuster to a run for governor.

Breakthrough Year for Same-Sex Marriage

In 2013, the Supreme Court, several states and the Pope weighed in on same-sex marriage.

Hagel Nomination Is Filibustered

For the first time in history a Secretary of Defense nominee was filibustered.

U.S. Economy in 2013

The U.S. economic recovery remained steady, but slow in the face of fiscal cliffs, government standoffs and shutdowns.

Gun Violence in 2013

With shootings on the rise, the fight over gun control heated up.

Boston Marathon Tragedy

Three people were killed and hundreds injured after multiple bombs exploded during the Boston Marathon.

Whitey Bulger Trial

Notorious gangster James "Whitey" Bulger was brought to justice in Boston

IRS Targets Tea Party

In 2013, the IRS got audited and it wasn't pretty.

Verdict on George Zimmerman

Cleared of murder charges in 2013, Zimmerman's encounters with the law were far from over.

Sequester 2013

Automatic spending cuts began in March 2013, impacting government spending in all areas.

The Future of Guantanamo Bay

In 2013, Obama recommitted his vow to close Guantanamo Bay.

Voting Rights After Shelby v Holder

States moved to tighten voting rules after the Supreme Court ruled on the Voting Rights Act

The Trials of Bradley Manning

After being sentenced to 35 years in prison, Manning came out as a transgender.

Senate Limits the Use of the Filibuster

The Senate deployed the "nuclear option" to end the minority's party right to filibuster executive and judicial branch nominees.

Civil Rights Anniversaries

Several major Civil Rights milestones had anniversaries in 2013.

Holder Proposes Major Criminal Justice System Changes

The Attorney General introduced his Smart On Crime initiative.

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