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Press Releases

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


Comments About Vermont Welcoming Afghan Refugees

"I am gratified that Vermont is volunteering to welcome and resettle one hundred Afghans who have fled their country in recent weeks. Many of these Afghans supported the U.S. military and our government over the past two decades, risking their lives and the safety of their families. Vermonters recognize that it is our moral obligation to provide them refuge from retaliation and persecution by the Taliban and other extremist groups in Afghanistan. "Vermont has a long history of warmly welcomin… Continue Reading


Comment On The End Of U.S. Military Operations In Afghanistan

Twenty years ago, the United States embarked on a military campaign to bring Osama bin Laden and those who carried out the September 11th terrorist attacks to justice. That mission was achieved a decade ago, yet we stayed in Afghanistan another decade in pursuit of the unrealistic and unachievable goal of turning Afghanistan into a unified, democratic society. It cost the lives of thousands of Americans and coalition supporters, and hundreds of thousands of Afghans, many, civilians. It was lo… Continue Reading


Senator Patrick Leahy On The Calamity In Afghanistan

We have all watched in dismay as the Taliban have taken control of Kabul triggering a humanitarian crisis. Tens of thousands of desperate people, including American citizens, Afghans who courageously supported U.S. forces and aid workers, and others at risk have sought safety at the Kabul Airport and the United States and our allies are conducting an unprecedented air evacuation. The scenes are extraordinarily heartbreaking and infuriating, and there is plenty of blame to go around for a faile… Continue Reading


USDA Announces Improvements To The Dairy Safety Net And New Pandemic Market Volatility Assistance Program

Burlington, VT, Aug. 19, 2021 - The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced the details of the Pandemic Market Volatility Assistance Program as part of meetings with farmers and a tour of farms with Senator Leahy. In June, Secretary Vilsack committed to providing additional pandemic assistance for dairy farmers in an exchange at a hearing with Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Leahy. Through the program, USDA will provide about $350 million in pandemic assistance payments to… Continue Reading


In Bennington, Leahy Announces Resource Support For Southwestern Vermont Health Care Child Care Facility

BENNINGTON, Vt. (WEDNESDAY, Aug. 18, 2021) - U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) visited Southwestern Vermont Health Care (SVHC) Wednesday to announce his support of the hospital's proposed expansion of their child care center. Leahy, the Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, included a request for $750,000 to support child care expansion in Bennington in his 2021 Congressionally Directed Spending requests. Let's Grow Kids, a statewide campaign advocating for equitable access to high-… Continue Reading


Leahy And 45 Other Senators, In Bipartisan Letter, Urge Biden Administration To Protect Afghan Women Leaders In Wake Of Taliban Takeover In Afghanistan

(TUESDAY, Aug. 17, 2021) - Senate Appropriations Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has joined Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) in a bipartisan letter signed by 46 senators to urge the Biden administration to take swift action to protect and support Afghan women leaders facing unparalleled danger following the Taliban's violent sweep across Afghanistan and seizure of Kabul. Joining Senators Menendez and Shaheen in signing the lett… Continue Reading


In A Letter To The Secretary Of State, Senators Leahy, Sullivan, Coons, Schumer And Others Urge The Evacuation Of Afghan Partners

We write today with extreme concern regarding the ongoing civilian situation in Afghanistan as U.S. forces withdraw. As the Taliban rapidly seizes control of cities across the country, we strongly urge the Department of State to also swiftly expand its overly narrow interpretation of eligibility for the Afghan Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) program to include not only those staff members who have worked under U.S. government contracts, but also those employed under and associated with grants or co… Continue Reading


Senator Patrick Leahy -- Saving Our Afghan Partners

As the Taliban take over the country at breakneck speed, commandeering everything from artillery to helicopters and executing gov't soldiers who surrender, our Afghan partners - judges, lawyers, teachers, scholars, journalists, human rights defenders - many of them women, are desperate to escape to safety in a third country. This is no time to be questioning whether they qualify for visas. We have a moral obligation to evacuate them and their families. ###… Continue Reading


Leahy Praises Passage Today Of Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment And Jobs Act

(TUESDAY, Aug. 10, 2021) -- Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is hailing Senate passage Tuesday of a bipartisan bill to help build back the United States' crumbling infrastructure. The infrastructure package includes $550 billion in new federal investments over five years and $650 billion in authorizations. Leahy, who chairs the Appropriations Committee, said: "Once again, the Senate has shown that infrastructure is - as it always has been - a bipartisan issue. The Infrastructure Investment and… Continue Reading


Durbin, Leahy, Booker, Colleagues: It’s Time To End The Federal Death Penalty

U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Cory Booker (D-NJ), both members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today led 14 of their Senate Democratic colleagues in urging the Department of Justice (DOJ) to take further steps to end the federal death penalty once and for all. In a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland, the Senators commend the recent decision to impose a moratorium on federal executions p… Continue Reading


Leahy, Sanders, Welch And Scott Announce $4.5 M. In N. Border Grants To 14 Vermont Communities

MONTPELIER, Vt. (MONDAY, Aug. 9, 2021) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D), Senator Bernie Sanders (I), Representative Peter Welch (D), Governor Phil Scott (R) announced Monday that 14 Vermont organizations will receive more than $4.5 million in federal grants to promote economic development across the Green Mountain State. Funds will help local communities address critical water infrastructure needs, open new childcare programs, develop outdoor recreation infrastructure and expand the state's food hub… Continue Reading


Statement On The Infrastructure Investment And Jobs Act

Once again, the Senate has proven that infrastructure is - as it always has been - a bipartisan issue. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act offers a once-in-a-generation vision for America's infrastructure that is long overdue. This bipartisan infrastructure package makes the largest federal investment in public transit, passenger rail, and bridges in more than 50 years. Gone are the days when "infrastructure" has meant only bridges, highways, roads, and rail. While we need to invest … Continue Reading


Appropriations Chair Leahy Announces More Than $21.5 Million For Vermont Military Construction Projects In Appropriations Bill Approved By The Committee On Wednesday

(THURSDAY, Aug. 5, 2021) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced more than $21.5 million for Vermont projects in the annual Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Bill advanced by the Committee on Thursday. The funding would accelerate construction of a readiness center in Bennington, Vt., and support a new family readiness center at Camp Johnson, on land formally referred to as the Ethan Allen Air Force Base. Leahy said: … Continue Reading


Statement On Repression Of Civil Society Activists In South Sudan

Mr. LEAHY. After decades of civil war, famine, and political instability, after millions were killed and millions more became refugees, many hoped that independence and a peace agreement in South Sudan would usher in a period of stability and progress. Some South Sudanese refugees who had resettled in the United States returned to South Sudan to aid in rebuilding. Unfortunately, peace was fleeting and the past decade of independence has been marred by continued violent ethnic conflict, widespr… Continue Reading


Appropriations Chairman Leahy Announces More Than $15 Million For Vermont Projects In The Energy And Water Appropriations Bill, Approved Wednesday By The Appropriations Committee

(THURSDAY, Aug. 5, 2021) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, on Thursday announced more than $15 million in funding for specific Vermont projects in the Senate's Fiscal Year 2022 Energy and Water Development Appropriations Bill that will support the Lake Champlain Basin and renewable energy throughout the state. This is the annual Appropriations bill that funds several federal agencies. Leahy secured more than $5 million in Congressionally Directed… Continue Reading


Leahy Secures More Than $23 Million For Vermont-Specific Projects In The Annual Agriculture Appropriations Bill

(THURSDAY, Aug. 5, 2021) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee and a senior member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, on Thursday announced more than $23 million in Congressionally Directed Spending priorities for Vermont as the committee on Wednesday approved the Fiscal Year 2022 Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Bill, the annual budget bill for the Department of Agriculture and other ag… Continue Reading


Leahy Praises The President’s Historic Nomination Of Beth Robinson To Serve On 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals

(THURSDAY, Aug. 5, 2021) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), President Pro Tempore of the U.S. Senate and Former Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, strongly praised President Biden's historic nomination of longtime Vermonter and Vermont Supreme Court Justice Beth Robinson to serve on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. Justice Beth Robinson - a pioneer in the national movement for LBGTQ rights and the first openly gay Vermont Supreme Court Justice - would be the first ever openly LGBTQ w… Continue Reading


Comment On President Biden’s Nomination Of Beth Robinson To Be A Judge On The Court Of Appeals For The Second Circuit

Today is a good day for Vermont. I am incredibly proud that President Biden has nominated Vermont's very own Justice Beth Robinson to serve as a Judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. I strongly praise President Biden for nominating Justice Robinson, who has been a tireless champion for equal rights and equal justice in the mold of the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. I know that, if confirmed, Justice Robinson would serve on the Second Circuit with integrity, humility, a… Continue Reading


Leahy Holds First Markups As Chair Of Appropriations Committee

(Wednesday, August 4, 2021) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Wednesday held the first markups of the Senate Appropriations Committee as Chairman, advancing the Agriculture, Energy and Water, and Military Construction and Veterans Affairs fiscal year 2022 appropriations bills through the Committee with strong bipartisan support. Leahy said: "These bills make important investments in mitigating the climate crisis, our veterans, and our farmers. I'm also glad to announce that we have included more… Continue Reading


Over $18 Million In Federal Aid Provided To Vermont Venues

(TUESDAY, Aug. 3, 2021) - Vermont's Congressional Delegation, Senator Patrick Leahy, Senator Bernard Sanders, and Representative Peter Welch, on Tuesday congratulated the most recent Vermont recipients of the U.S. Small Business Administration Shuttered Venue Operators Grants (SVOG). SVOG was created by legislation authored by Welch, with full support from Senator Leahy and Senator Sanders in their roles as Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee and Chairman of the Senate Budget Committ… Continue Reading

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