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

10.07.13

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy On the Nominations of Colin Bruce and Sara Ellis

Today, we will vote on two of the district court nominations pending before the Senate. While I am glad we are considering these important nominations today I hope that this needless government shutdown soon comes to an end so the Senate can tend to the business of the country, including ensuring that our courts have the judges they need. Colin Bruce is nominated to serve on the United States District Court for the Central District of Illinois. Mr. Bruce is a lifelong Federal prosecutor who h… Continue Reading


10.07.13

Remarks Of Senator Patrick Leahy: Time To End The Manufactured "Made In Congress" Shutdown

Mr. President, in what has become an all too familiar scene around the Capitol over the past few years, we again find ourselves in a stalemate over providing funding to keep the Federal Government running. I share the frustration of most Americans that what was once the regular business of Congress - simply funding the government - has been replaced by political theater and another artificial, made-in-Congress crisis that imperils the economy and, in ways large and small, every single family … Continue Reading


10.05.13

Leahy Statement On Impact Of Shutdown On Courts, Public's Right To Know

[Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) spoke on the Senate Floor Saturday about the ongoing government shutdown and the impact on the federal judiciary and government transparency. Below is the text of Leahy's statement as prepared for delivery.] Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee,On the Impact of the Shutdown on the Judiciary & Government TransparencyOctober 5, 2013 Today marks the fifth day of the government shutdown, and by refusing to pass a Conti… Continue Reading


10.04.13

Leahy: Shutdown Hurts Our National Guard, Readiness

Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy spoke on the Senate floor this morning about the impact of the government shutdown on the nation's readiness, the National Guard, and veterans. The Vermont National Guard earlier this week announced over 500 furloughs of technicians and guardsmen on active orders due to the government shutdown.] Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D- Vt.) On The Impacts Of A Government Shutdown On Veterans And The National Guard October 3, 2013 We have heard a lot over the last f… Continue Reading


10.03.13

Leahy Welcomes Passage Of Bipartisan Bill To Reauthorize Critical Visa Program For Iraqi Translators

[Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) issued the following comment Thursday after the House on Wednesday passed legislation to extend the Iraqi Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) program, which provides visas to translators who served alongside U.S. troops. The Senate passed identical legislation on Monday, and the measure approved by both chambers now goes to the White House for signature.] "I am glad that House members put politics aside and passed a temporary extension of the … Continue Reading


10.02.13

Senate Judiciary Committee Holds Second Oversight Hearing On Government Surveillance Programs

(Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2013) -The Senate Judiciary Committee is holding a hearing titled "Continued Oversight of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act." This is the second oversight hearing convened by Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) since July on the use of government surveillance programs. Member statements, witness testimony and a webcast of today's hearing are available online. Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee, Hearing on "Continuing Oversig… Continue Reading


10.01.13

Leahy Applauds Senate Passage Of Bipartisan Bill To Reauthorize Critical Visa Program For Iraqi Translators

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) hailed the Senate's unanimous approval of a bipartisan measure to extend an important visa program for Iraqi translators who support U.S. troops abroad. The Senate unanimously approved a bipartisan bill late Monday night, just as the program's authorization was set to expire, and Leahy called on the House to act quickly. "This program offers nothing short of a lifeline for the Iraqi men and women who risked everything supporting the United States' mission in Iraq,… Continue Reading


09.30.13

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) On the Possible Shutdown of the United States Government

I am disappointed that a small group of extremists continue to insist on shutting down the Federal government, placing their own political agenda ahead of the good of the country. The obsession with defunding or delaying the Affordable Care Act, which will continue to be implemented in the event of a government shutdown, is out of touch and it poses serious threats for our economy and for the well-being of thousands of hardworking Federal employees and those who rely on important government ser… Continue Reading


09.30.13

Comments Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), On The Looming Government Shutdown September 30, 2013

"With the government on the verge of shutting down, a small group in Congress continues to play politics with the very programs and policies so vital to millions of Americans. Children on Head Start programs. Veterans returning from combat. Seniors who depend on Medicare. Repairs are suspended to roads and bridges that are about to collapse. Our recovery from floods and hurricanes is hurt. Our nation's security is at risk. "Our constituents elect us to lead, not to play bumper sticker polit… Continue Reading


09.27.13

Leahy: Six Vermont Jurisdictions Net Over $700,000 For New Police Hires

(Friday, Sept. 27, 2013) - Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Friday announced that Vermont will receive $744,558 in grants for the hiring and rehiring of law enforcement officers. The grants to six law enforcement agencies across Vermont are administered by the U.S. Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) through the federal agency's COPS Hiring Program. Leahy, a former prosecutor, said, "COPS hiring grants remain a crucial source of support for our state and local… Continue Reading


09.27.13

Patty Stonesifer to Keynote Senator Leahy’s 17th Annual Women’s Economic Opportunity Conference

Registration is open for Vermont's 17th Annual Vermont Women's Economic Opportunity Conference, to be held Saturday, Oct. 19, at Vermont Technical College in Randolph. The free conference, presented by U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy, draws hundreds of women from around Vermont who want to hone their business skills, polish their résumés or explore new career possibilities. This year's conference will feature nearly 30 morning and afternoon workshops, including a range of offerings des… Continue Reading


09.26.13

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy Consequences of a Government Shutdown and a Full Year Continuing Resolution for U.S. National Security Senate Floor

Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, I have listened this week to the distinguished Chairwoman of the Appropriations Committee who has made a compelling case for passing a clean, short term continuing resolution through November 15th so we can get on to the business of debating and passing appropriations bills. I agree with everything she has said, and particularly about the bipartisan way the Committee has written and reported bills this year. Any of those bills could be debated and voted on today, co… Continue Reading


09.26.13

[BREAKING] With Time Running Out For Champlain Basin River Gages, Leahy Announces Funding Solution To Keep Them Operating

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Thursday that agreements are being finalized among key partners to prevent the looming shutdown of several U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) river gages in the Lake Champlain Basin. Leahy for years has been the driving force in keeping the gages operating. The measuring devices have become vital tools in monitoring water quality and flood dangers, as seen during Irene and again in this year's flooding. The Lake Champlain Basin Program (LCBP) Steering Com… Continue Reading


09.25.13

Following is the summary of the revised EIS on F-35 basing that the members of the Vermont Congressional Delegation received late Wednesday from the Air Force:

Following is the summary of the revised EIS on F-35 basing that the members of the Vermont Congressional Delegation received late Wednesday from the Air Force: (SOURCE: U.S. Air Force -) F-35A OPERATIONAL BASING FINAL ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT SUMMARY *Preferred Alternative only; Record of Decision will be made in the Fall of 2013 The "Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for United States Air Force F-35A Operational Basing" analyzes the Air Force proposal to base F-35A aircraft … Continue Reading


09.25.13

Leahy Applauds Senate Passage Of Legislation To Reauthorize National Center for Missing and Exploited Children

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) welcomed the chamber's unanimous approval Wednesday of bipartisan legislation to extend a successful program supporting efforts to find missing and exploited children. The House overwhelmingly approved the measure to reauthorize the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) more than a week ago, but despite the bill's broad bipartisan support, its passage in the Senate was delayed over anonymous objections. The Center's current charter is set to ex… Continue Reading


09.24.13

Senate Votes To Confirm Federal Circuit Court Nominee

(Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2013) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) hailed the unanimous confirmation Tuesday of Todd Hughes to the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Leahy also noted that Hughes's confirmation marks an important milestone for the judicial branch-he is the first openly gay judge ever to serve on a Federal appellate court. The Senate voted to confirm him 98-0. "I am proud that today the Senate is finally taking this critical step to break … Continue Reading


09.24.13

Senator Leahy Speaks On Senate Floor About The Budget Stalemate, And The House’s Slashing Cuts To The SNAP Food Aid Program

Today we are voting on the nomination of Todd Hughes to fill a judicial vacancy on the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. This vote marks an important milestone: If confirmed, Mr. Hughes will be the first openly gay judge to serve on a Federal appellate court in our Nation's history. I am proud that the Senate is finally taking an historic step to break down another barrier and increase diversity on our Federal bench. I ask that the full text of my statement be placed in… Continue Reading


09.24.13

Leahy Delivers Keynote Address On Foreign Surveillance Oversight At Georgetown University Law Center

NOTE: Prepared remarks include Chairman Leahy's announcement that he is working with members in the House and Senate on new legislation to reform and improve certain provisions of the USA PATRIOT Act and FISA Amendments Act. The Judiciary Committee will also meet next week to hear additional testimony on the issue. A webcast of the speech and panel discussion featuring former Vice President Walter Mondale and Senator Gary Hart can be viewed here. REMARKS OF SENATOR PATRICK LEAHY GEORGETOWN UNI… Continue Reading


09.24.13

Leahy: Norwich University Applied Research Institutes Gains Multi-Million Dollar Cybersecurity Contracts

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday announced that Norwich University Applied Research Institutes (NUARI) of Northfield has been awarded competitive contracts worth up to $9.9 million from the Department of Homeland Security. NUARI will provide research and development services in support of developing a national cyber war-gaming capability designed to make critical infrastructure more resilient to cyber-attacks. The initial award is $1.5 million and the total potential value of the ongoing … Continue Reading


09.23.13

Senate Judiciary Committee Members Call For IG Review Of Surveillance Authorities

A bipartisan group of nine Senate Judiciary Committee members, led by Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Ranking Member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), sent a letter Monday calling for the inspector general of the intelligence community to conduct a full-scale review of the use of surveillance authorities and make public the findings. Specifically, the Senators are asking for detailed information on the surveillance of Americans under FISA and Patriot Act authorities and any misuse of these authoritie… Continue Reading

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