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


Leahy, Other Senate Democrats Introduce Bill To Crack Down On Secret Spending In Elections

Senate Democrats Introduce Legislation to Crack Down on Secret Spending in Elections DISCLOSE Act of 2014 will Help Correct Flood of Secret Money Created by Citizens United Decision Washington, D.C. - With the Koch Brothers and many others spending untold millions to secretly influence this year's elections, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Senate Democrats today introduced the DISCLOSE Act of 2014. The bill would crack down on so-called "dark money" by requiring organizations that spend… Continue Reading


Leahy Announces Witnesses, Details For July 1 U.S. Senate Field Hearing In Vermont On Open Internet Rules

(TUESDAY, June 24, 2014) -- Senator Patrick Leahy Tuesday officially announced that the United States Senate Judiciary Committee, which Leahy chairs, will hold a field hearing in Vermont on "Preserving an Open Internet: Rules to Promote Competition and Protect Main Street Consumers." The hearing will be held on Tuesday, July 1, at 10 a.m. at the Davis Center on the campus of the University of Vermont, in Burlington, Vt. Leahy also announced a panel of four witnesses who will testify at the hea… Continue Reading



Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, yesterday in Maputo, Mozambique, representatives of many of the 161 countries that have joined the treaty banning the production, stockpiling, export and use of anti-personnel landmines convened the third review conference in the 15 years since the treaty came into force. The impact of that treaty, once ridiculed as a naïve dream by many in the U.S. defense establishment, has been extraordinary. The vast majority of landmine use and production has stopped, new… Continue Reading


Comment of Senator Patrick Leahy, Chairman, State Department And Foreign Operations Subcommittee, On Aid To Egypt

"The Congress has an important role in the provision of U.S. aid to foreign governments, and we consult regularly with the Administration. Withholding military aid to the Egyptian regime has let its leaders know that repressive actions and abuses of human rights and the rule of law are deeply concerning to the American people, and to many in Congress. The harsh actions taken today against journalists is the latest descent toward despotism. Through discussions with Secretary Kerry and others o… Continue Reading


Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee, On Crawford Nomination

The judges that fill the two Federal district courts seats in my home state have an extraordinary impact on the lives of Vermonters. So when I learned that my friend Judge William Sessions was to take senior status after 18 years of distinguished service on the Vermont district court, I took seriously my responsibility to act swiftly to identify a candidate to recommend to President Obama for nomination. I worked with Senator Sanders, Representative Welch, and the Vermont Bar Association to con… Continue Reading


Senate Judiciary Committee To Take Up Cellphone Unlocking Bill This Week

(Monday, June 23, 2014) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Ranking Member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) announced on Monday an agreement on bipartisan legislation that would restore the ability of consumers to more easily transfer their cell phones to other wireless carriers. The legislation will be listed on the Judiciary Committee's agenda for this week's executive business meeting. Leahy, Grassley and a bipartisan group of cosponsors introduced the Unlocking Co… Continue Reading


Remarks of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) On The Retirement Of Colonel Michael Colburn

Next month, Colonel Michael Colburn, the Director of the U.S. Marine Band, will retire after nearly 30 years with this history-rich and venerated organization. A native Vermonter, Colonel Colburn's appreciation for the band known worldwide as "The President's Own" began decades ago when the then 12-year-old euphonium-playing St. Alban's native met a principal in the band while at summer band camp in Vermont. In 1987, Col. Colburn joined The President's Own as a euphonium player, and ultimat… Continue Reading


Cloture Filed On Vermont U.S. Court Nominee, Setting Up Likely Senate Confirmation Vote Next Week

(FRIDAY, June 20, 2014) -- Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) Thursday night filed a cloture petition on a judicial nomination to fill a vacancy on the U.S. District Court in Vermont, setting up a likely confirmation vote next week. President Obama on May 20 nominated Vermont Supreme Court Justice Geoffrey Crawford to the U.S. District Court in Vermont, to fill the vacancy created when Judge William Sessions took senior status on the court last weekend. Leahy, who chairs the Senate Judiciary… Continue Reading


Leahy & Bipartisan Group Presses For Votes On Permanent INTERNET ACCESS TAX MORATORIUM –

BIPARTISAN GROUP PRESSES FOR FLOOR ACTION ON PERMANENT INTERNET ACCESS TAX MORATORIUM BILL WASHINGTON, D.C.-The Co-Chairs of the bipartisan, bicameral Congressional Internet Caucus are urging House and Senate Leadership to pass bipartisan legislation before the August recess to permanently eliminate new state and local taxes on Internet access. In a letter from Reps. Anna G. Eshoo (D-Calif.) and Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), as well as Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and John Thune (R-S.D.), the member… Continue Reading


Chairman Patrick Leahy State Department And Foreign Operations Subcommittee Opening Remarks Full Committee Markup FY 2015 State, Foreign Operations Appropriations Bill

I want to thank the Chairwoman and Ranking Member Shelby for the support they and their staffs have given the subcommittee. And I thank Senator Graham for his input and support. This bill is better because of it. I also want to thank the staff: Paul Grove and Adam Yezerski for the Minority, and Tim Rieser, Janet Stormes, and Alex Carnes for the Majority. They have worked as a team, as they always do. We could not have produced this bill without the dedicated, hard work of the editorial an… Continue Reading


SJC Approves 13 Judicial Nominees

(Thursday, June 19, 2014) - The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday approved 13 nominees to fill judicial vacancies and began discussion of bipartisan legislation authored by Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to reauthorize the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act. Six of the nominees approved on Thursday would fill emergency vacancies, including two emergency vacancies on the Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit. Another nominee, Ronnie White, was first nominated in 1997 by Preside… Continue Reading


Harkin, Eight Senate Democrats Introduce Bill to Restore Overtime Protections for American Workers

Today, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, along with eight Senate Democrats, introduced legislation to restore overtime protections for low- and mid-wage salaried workers. The Restoring Overtime Pay for Working Americans Act would help to restore the 40-hour workweek for these workers. Today, only 12 percent of salaried workers are guaranteed overtime pay based on their salaries, compared to 65 percent in 1975. This bill wou… Continue Reading



− The Senate State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Subcommittee today approved a fiscal year 2015 bill that provides $48.285 billion in discretionary budget authority to project U.S. leadership and protect a wide array of U.S. security, humanitarian and economic interests around the world. Of this amount, $8.625 billion is for Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) in the frontline states (Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq) and other areas in political transition (incl… Continue Reading


Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee, On the Capture of Ahmed Abu Khattala

"I congratulate our brave troops and the skilled men and women of the Justice Department and the FBI, under the leadership of Attorney General Holder, Director Comey and Secretary Hagel, for the capture of Ahmed Abu Khattala. I look forward to his prosecution in the U.S. court system. That is what Americans do when faced with murderers and terrorists - we prove their guilt and hold them accountable for what they have done. We will try Khattala just as we have successfully tried more than 500 … Continue Reading


Senator Leahy and Congresswoman Matsui Introduce Landmark Net Neutrality Legislation

Today, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and Congresswoman Doris Matsui (D-CA), member of the House Energy and Commerce Communications and Technology Subcommittee, introduced bicameral legislation to require the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to ban so-called "paid prioritization" agreements between a broadband provider and a content provider. The Online Competition and Consumer Choice Act would help prevent the creation of a two-tiered Internet … Continue Reading


Leahy Announces June 25 Hearing On The Voting Rights Amendment Act

(Monday, June 16, 2014) - Next week, on the one year anniversary of the Supreme Court's devastating Shelby County decision that gutted the core of the Voting Rights Act, the Senate Judiciary Committee will meet to hear testimony about bicameral legislation to strengthen the original law. The hearing, entitled "The Voting Rights Amendment Act, S.1945: Updating the Voting Rights Act in Response to Shelby County v. Holder," will occur exactly one year after the Court issued its divided opinion th… Continue Reading


Judiciary Chairman Leahy's REAX To FCC Announcement to Review Internet Interconnection Agreements

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee, On FCC Announcement to Review Internet Interconnection Agreements June 13, 2014 "I welcome Chairman Wheeler's announcement that the FCC will focus on interconnection issues. Shining more light on how content is delivered across the backbone of the Internet is an important step in ensuring that consumers receive the service they are paying for. As I said during the Judiciary Committee's hearing on the Comcast-Time… Continue Reading


Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee On the 47th Anniversary of Loving v. Virginia

On June 12, 1967, during a period of significant political and racial tension in our Nation, the Supreme Court issued a unanimous landmark decision in Loving v. Virginia that overturned laws banning interracial marriage. This decision ushered in a transformative moment in American history. As we approach the first anniversary of another landmark Supreme Court decision in the Windsor case, we should remember the foundational work that was laid when the Supreme Court came together nearly 50 year… Continue Reading


Leahy Steers Crawford Nomination Through Senate Judiciary Committee

(THURSDAY, June 12, 2014) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Thursday secured unanimous bipartisan committee approval of the nomination of Vermont Supreme Court Justice Geoffrey Crawford for an upcoming vacancy on Vermont's U.S. District Court. Crawford earned unanimous support by the committee for his nomination to fill the vacancy that will occur this weekend, on June 15, when Judge William Sessions takes senior status. Leahy, who recommended Justice Crawford to the … Continue Reading


Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee, Executive Business Meeting

This morning we have a full agenda and I hope we can make some progress. We have 15 judicial nominees that can be reported out today with some cooperation and an important bipartisan bill introduced by Senator Coons and cosponsored by most of us here. As the senior Senator from Vermont, I can tell you that it is very rare that we have a judicial nominee before us from my home state because we only have two authorized district court judgeships. Today, I hope the Committee will report the nominat… Continue Reading

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