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Search Senator Leahy’s press releases, floor statements, and Committee speeches by date or by subject.

01.30.14

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) On Senate Passage Of S. 1926 The Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act Of 2014

[Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.)praised Senate passage Thursday of legislation that would provide relief to homeowners subject to dramatic increases in flood insurance rates. The legislation would ensure that the Federal Emergency Management Agency completes a study on flood insurance affordability before new premiums take effect.] "Tropical Storm Irene brought into sharp focus the importance of the National Flood Insurance Program for non-coastal states like Vermont. Efforts to strengthen the p… Continue Reading


01.30.14

Whitcomb Jr. and Sr. High School

On January 30, Senator Leahy held his first online chat of 2014 with the Whitcomb Jr. and Sr. High School 9th grade social studies class. Using the internet to communicate with the students and their teachers, the Senator answered the students questions about the Leahy War Victims Fund and his work to ban anti-personnel landmines around the world. He also spoke with them about his pastime as a photographer, and his community involvement at home in Vermont.… Continue Reading


01.30.14

SJC Approves Historic, Bipartisan Legislation To Address The Nation’s Exploding Prison Population

(THURSDAY, Jan. 30, 2014) - In a strong and bipartisan vote, the Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday approved legislation to confront the unsustainable growth of the federal prison population. Three Republicans joined with all 10 Democrats on the panel to report the bill to the full Senate. The bill, a compromise agreement of the Smarter Sentencing Act, would lower nonviolent drug mandatory sentences, modestly expand the existing federal "safety valve," and promote sentencing consistent with th… Continue Reading


01.29.14

Privacy And Civil Liberties Oversight Board To Appear Before SJC Next Month

(Wednesday, January 29, 2014) - All five members of the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB), who recently issued a report on government surveillance programs, will appear before the Senate Judiciary Committee next month to discuss their findings, Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Wednesday. Members of the PCLOB will appear before the Committee on Wednesday, February 12, less than three weeks after the Board published a comprehensive report concluding that the bulk phone r… Continue Reading


01.29.14

Leahy Chairs DOJ Oversight Hearing With Attorney General Holder

(Wednesday, January 29, 2014) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is chairing a hearing this morning on oversight of the Department of Justice. Attorney General Eric Holder is testifying before the panel. Testimony, member statements, and a webcast of the hearing are available online. Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing On Oversight Of The Department Of Justice January 29, 2014 I welcome Attorney General Holder ba… Continue Reading


01.28.14

Reaction Of Senator Patrick Leahy To The President’s State Of The Union Message

"Too many families work hard and still fall behind. A greater percentage of the wealth is concentrated in the top 1 percent. It's time we pay attention to our middle class, the people who are the future of our country. I am glad to see the President speak of everyday Vermonters and Americans. They need his support. "After spending months shepherding bipartisan immigration reform through the Senate Judiciary Committee and the Senate last year, I am glad to see the President give a strong pus… Continue Reading


01.28.14

Vermont And The Farm Bill – AT-A-GLANCE Highlights –

Vermont And The Farm Bill - Top-Line Highlights At-A-Glance Dairy Margin Protection Program - A new Margin Protection Program for Dairy Producers will replace the Milk Income Loss Contract (MILC) safety net. This new approach creates a federally subsidized margin protection program that will help dairy farmers to offset low margins caused either by low milk prices or high input costs, and prevent an erosion of equity. A key element of the Senate Farm Bill -- the "market stabilization" provision… Continue Reading


01.28.14

Leahy: Long Overdue Farm Bill Clears Conference On Monday Night

(MONDAY p.m., Jan. 27, 2014) - Nearly one month after a one-year extension of legislation to protect the nation's farming, conservation and nutrition programs expired, the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives are poised this week to consider a final, comprehensive agriculture reform bill that will net more than $24 billion in savings, support 16 million American jobs, and make considerable progress in advancing conservation and wildlife protections. Vermont's Senator Patrick Leahy (D), the … Continue Reading


01.24.14

Leahy And Sanders Announce Merit Commission To Screen Candidates For Vermont’s Upcoming Federal Judicial Vacancy

U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) Friday announced formation of a new Vermont Judicial Selection Commission to screen candidates for Vermont's upcoming federal judicial vacancy. On Jan. 15, U.S. District Court Judge William Sessions informed Leahy and President Obama that he will be taking senior status after 18 years on the federal bench in Vermont. The District Court in Vermont is at full strength with two active judges currently serving, but Judge Sessions… Continue Reading


01.23.14

AG Holder To Appear Before SJC This Month

Attorney General Eric Holder will appear before the Senate Judiciary Committee for an oversight hearing on Wednesday, January 29, Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced on Sunday. The oversight hearing will be just weeks after President Obama charged the Attorney General and the Director of National Intelligence with considering reforms to government surveillance programs, a top priority for Leahy and other members of the Judiciary Committee. Holder last appeared before the Senate Judiciary C… Continue Reading


01.23.14

Senator Patrick Leahy Comment On PCLOB Report

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Committee On The Judiciary, On The Report Of The Privacy And Civil Liberties Oversight Board January 23, 2014 [Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) on Thursday responded to the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board's Report on the Telephone Records Program Conducted Under Section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act and on the Operations of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. Leahy is the lead Democratic coaut… Continue Reading


01.17.14

Comments Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Committee On The Judiciary, Following The President’s National Security Speech

[Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) on Friday responded to President Obama's announcement that he will work with Congress to improve oversight of government surveillance programs. Leahy is the lead Democratic coauthor of the bipartisan USA FREEDOM Act, and earlier this week presided over a hearing featuring all five members of the President's Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technologies to discuss their recent recommendations to overhaul the government's su… Continue Reading


01.16.14

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Omnibus Appropriations Bill

Mr. President, I want to add my voice to those who have spoken in support of the Omnibus appropriations bill. I spoke about it earlier this week, so I am not going to repeat those remarks, but I want to be sure the American people understand the importance of what we are doing. Only Chairwoman Mikulski could have said it as well as she did. This compromise bill represents the end - hopefully for a long time - of "shut down, slow down, slam down politics." It shows that when people here wa… Continue Reading


01.16.14

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee, On the Introduction of the 2014 Voting Rights Act Amendment

Almost five decades ago, President Lyndon Johnson signed the original Voting Rights Act into law. At the signing, he spoke eloquently about the central purpose of the law. He said: "This act flows from a clear and simple wrong. Its only purpose is to right that wrong. Millions of Americans are denied the right to vote because of their color. This law will ensure them the right to vote. The wrong is one which no American, in his heart, can justify. The right is one which no American, true… Continue Reading


01.16.14

Leahy, Sensenbrenner & Conyers Lead Bipartisan, Bicameral Introduction Of Legislation To Restore The Voting Rights Act

Leahy, Sensenbrenner & Conyers Lead Bipartisan, Bicameral Introduction Of Legislation To Restore The Voting Rights Act WASHINGTON - Following the bipartisan tradition of the Voting Rights Act, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) joined with Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.) and Congressman John Conyers (D-Mich.) Thursday to introduce bipartisan legislation to uphold the most vital principles of the historic law. The legislation supported by a range of civil ri… Continue Reading


01.16.14

SJC Sends 30 Nominees To Full Senate

(Thursday, January 16, 2014) - The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday approved 30 judicial and executive nominees, including 10 nominees the Committee approved last year and 8 who would fill judicial emergencies. The Committee's action today comes as 94 judicial vacancies throughout the country prevent the courts from operating at full strength. The Senate failed at the end of last year to confirm dozens of judicial nominees pending in the Judiciary Committee and on the floor, who were retu… Continue Reading


01.15.14

Leahy Commends Judge Sessions For Years Of Service To Vermont

(Wednesday, January 15, 2014) - U.S. District Court Judge William Sessions on Wednesday informed the President that he will be taking senior status after 18 years on the federal bench. U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) praised Sessions for his years of service and vowed to find a highly qualified nominee for the next vacancy on the federal bench in Vermont. "I commend Judge Sessions for his years of service to our state and to this Nation. His commitment to the rule of law has made him among … Continue Reading


01.14.14

Leahy, Sanders, Welch Preserve Role And Funds For VSAC

(January 14, 2014) - The spending bill released late Monday night that funds federal agencies through the end of the fiscal year includes a provision, advocated by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.), requiring the U.S. Department of Education to continue its contract with the Vermont Student Assistance Corp. (VSAC) and other nonprofit student loan servicers nationwide. A provision in an earlier budget agreement, passed last month, could have af… Continue Reading


01.14.14

Leahy Opens His 4th Hg. On NSA Surveillance, w/All 5 Members Of President’s Intelligence Review Group

President's Intelligence Review Group Appears Before Senate Judiciary Committee WASHINGTON (Tuesday, January 14, 2014) -The Senate Judiciary Committee is holding a hearing featuring all five members of the President's Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technologies to discuss their recent recommendations to overhaul the government's surveillance authorities. Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), author of the bipartisan USA FREEDOM Act, has also presided over three earlier oversight hear… Continue Reading


01.14.14

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee, On D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals Decision on Net Neutrality Rules January 14, 2014

[Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) issued the following comment Tuesday on the D.C. Circuit's decision striking down core parts of the Federal Communications Commission's net neutrality rules.] "I am disappointed by today's ruling that struck down core elements of the FCC's Open Internet rules. Network neutrality is a bedrock principle of the Internet, one that has allowed it to grow and flourish into the ultimate marketplace of ideas. I will be closely monitoring th… Continue Reading

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