Press Room

Press Releases

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


Statement On The Inhofe/Shelby Amendment To S. 1260

This amendment would mandate dollar-for-dollar parity between defense and non-defense programs, unless we had sixty votes to overcome a point of order. It is not limited to discretionary spending on the FY 2022 appropriations bills, it applies to ALL federal spending. Providing a dollar to the Defense department for every dollar of non-defense spending is simply arbitrary, and would lead to absurd results. Under this amendment, if we pass an infrastructure bill through reconciliation provi… Continue Reading


Klobuchar, Moran, Leahy Introduce Legislation To Lift Cuba Trade Embargo

U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Jerry Moran (R-KS), and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) reintroduced major bipartisan legislation to lift the Cuba trade embargo. The Freedom to Export to Cuba Act would eliminate the legal barriers to Americans doing business in Cuba and pave the way for new economic opportunities by boosting U.S. exports and allowing Cubans greater access to American goods. The legislation repeals key provisions of previous laws that block Americans from doing business in Cuba, but doe… Continue Reading


Statement On The Shelby, Inhofe Amendment

Providing a dollar to the Defense department for every dollar of non-defense spending is simply arbitrary, and would lead to absurd results. Under this amendment, if we pass an infrastructure bill through reconciliation providing a $2 trillion dollars to fix our roads and bridges and build out broadband, we would then have to provide $2 trillion dollars for defense, nearly tripling that budget. I welcome a debate about the appropriate levels for defense and non-defense spending in Fiscal Year… Continue Reading


Shaheen, Ernst Lead Bipartisan Letter to President in Support of Afghan SIV Program

() - U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) - a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC) - led a bipartisan letter with U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) and a group of Senators to express widespread support in the Senate for the Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) program for Afghans, and to urge continued support from the administration to uphold the integrity of the program. The SIV program is the only path to ensuring the safety of Afghan allies that aided U.S. service members and di… Continue Reading


Statement On The Constitutional Crisis In El Salvador

Mr. LEAHY. I want to call attention to recent events in El Salvador which have caused international concern, including in the United States Congress. I was a Senator in the 1980s, when social injustices and authoritarian regimes in El Salvador led to a brutal civil war that lasted 12 years. I traveled there during that period when the United States was supporting the Salvador armed forces, despite their history of corruption and collusion with death squads that carried out political assassina… Continue Reading


Statement On The House-Introduced Emergency Security Supplemental Appropriations Bill

There can be no question that the needs in the wake of the tragic events of January 6th are great. The insurrectionists left in their wake broken doors and broken windows, our Capitol Police force is overburdened and under resourced, and members and staff have suffered significant emotional trauma. It also exposed vulnerabilities in our security that must be addressed. On top of that the pandemic has caused the House and the Senate and their supporting agencies to incur unexpected costs to k… Continue Reading


U.S. Army Corps Of Engineers Awards $5.2 Million To Vermont Firm To Build And Install Infrastructure Testing System At New Hampshire Lab

(FRIDAY, May 14, 2021) -- U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) announced Friday that Applied Research Associates (ARA) of Randolph, Vt., has received an award totaling $5,237,915 from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL), through the System of Systems Consortium. This initial award gets work underway on a total contract worth more than $9 million to develop and install a transportation loading system inside the Arm… Continue Reading


Appropriations Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy Holds Hearing On Domestic Violent Extremism In America

(Wednesday, May 12, 2021) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Wednesday held a hearing of the full Committee to examine the increasing prevalence of domestic violent extremism in the United States. Viewed by many experts as the most persistent and lethal threat facing our country, attacks and plots by domestic violent extremists are on the rise. In 2020 alone, white nationalists and like-minded extremists conducted 66 percent of terrorist plots an… Continue Reading


Statement On Domestic Violent Extremism In America

The January 6th images of insurrectionists flying confederate flags as they stormed the U.S. Capitol are stark reminders that domestic violent extremism in America is hardly a new threat. Our nation's history has been marred by the violent, deadly acts of extremists pushing a range of hateful white supremacist ideologies. From the Ku Klux Klan to Timothy McVeigh, we have witnessed - and suffered through - extremists killing innocent people in the name of their morally bankrupt causes. The violen… Continue Reading


Marcelle Leahy Begins Chemotherapy Treatment For Chronic Leukemia

(TUESDAY, May 11, 2021) -- Marcelle Leahy, a Registered Nurse and the wife of Senator Patrick Leahy, today (Tuesday) will start treatment for the next few weeks for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL), a chronic form of adult leukemia. Mrs. Leahy was diagnosed with the cancer in 2019. Her treatment will be as an outpatient. Mrs. Leahy, a melanoma cancer survivor, has been an advocate for cancer prevention programs. Given the challenges the pandemic has presented for regular checkups and ongoi… Continue Reading


Leahy Joins Durbin In Introducing America’s Red Rock Wilderness Act To Protect National Parks & Monuments

U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) introduced the America's Red Rock Wilderness Act today to protect 8.4 million acres of land in Utah that is rich in archaeological resources and home to numerous rare plant and animal species. These landscapes are also the access point for many national parks and offer unparalleled research, educational, and recreational opportunities for scientists, educators, outdoor enthusiasts, and American families. "With the America's Red Rock Wilderness Act, w… Continue Reading


Leahy Announces $12 Million In Federal COVID Relief To Bolster VT’s Substance Use Treatment And Prevention Response -- News Backgrounder ALSO BELOW --

MONTPELIER, Vt. (THURSDAY, May 6, 2021) - At a State House press conference Thursday, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced that Vermont will receive $12 million in COVID relief funds that will help communities strengthen their responses to substance use disorders and address new challenges brought on by the pandemic. Leahy was joined by Governor Phil Scott, Lt. Gov. Molly Gray, and Vermont's Health Commissioner, Dr. Mark Levine, for the announ… Continue Reading


Leahy Advances His Farm To School Bill And Spotlights Vermont’s Leading Role At Sharon Elementary School

SHARON, Vt. (THURSDAY, May 6, 2021) - U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) visited Sharon Elementary School Thursday to highlight new federal Farm to School legislation. The Farm to School Act, introduced by Leahy on April 22, seeks to reauthorize and expand the popular federal Farm to School program. Sharon Elementary School actively participates in Farm to School programing with a school garden, farm tours and an ongoing focus on health and wellness. Leahy, who chairs the Senate Appropriations… Continue Reading


Rubio, Leahy Urge Blinken To Strengthen U.S.-Mongolia Relations

U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) sent a letter to the U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken expressing their concern about recent political developments in Mongolia. "Recent controversial actions taken by the parliament, the judiciary, and the president - including the hasty passage of an amendment to the Presidential Election Law that barred the incumbent from seeking reelection, the removal of a Constitutional Court judge seen as likely to challenge the constitutio… Continue Reading


Rubio, Leahy Commend State Department Tibet Language In The 2020 Human Rights Report

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), author of the Tibetan Policy and Support Act of 2019 and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) sent a letter to U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken applauding the removal of gratuitous language regarding U.S. policy on Tibet's relationship to the People's Republic of China from the annual Human Rights Report. "We should not allow the CCP to define the terms of our interactions with them, or with the people living in the PRC, nor should we uncritically accept how the CCP char… Continue Reading


Leahy Dedicates New, Improved Moosalamoo Trail Inspired By Robert Frost; (Incl. At-A-Glance News Backgrounder)

RIPTON, Vt. (TUESDAY, May 4, 2021) - U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) visited the Moosalamoo National Recreation Area (NRA) on Tuesday to dedicate the refurbished Robert Frost National Trail and Interpretive Area in the Green Mountain National Forest in Ripton, Vermont. Work over the past two years, supported by funds Leahy secured through his leadership on the Senate Appropriations Committee, has greatly improved the Frost Trail to achieve full accessibility for those with mobility challenge… Continue Reading


Senators Menendez, Leahy On Ousting Of El Salvador’s Top Judges And Attorney General

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) and Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) issued the following statement regarding the situation in El Salvador after President Nayib Bukele and members of his party in the Legislative Assembly used this weekend's legislative session to abruptly dismiss five magistrates from the country's constitutional court as well as remove Attorney General Raul Melara: "This is a deeply concerning autocratic ambush in… Continue Reading


Statement On President Biden’s Announcement On Funds Stolen By The Trump Administration

For years, President Trump raided taxpayer dollars from our military and military families to build a wall he promised the American people Mexico would pay for. He let schools for military children deteriorate, and he stripped our National Guard of the resources and equipment they needed to effectively carry out their mission. This smash-and-grab funding of bumper sticker policies left a backlog of unfunded projects vital to our national security that will take years to restore. The construct… Continue Reading


Reaction To The President’s Message To A Joint Meeting Of Congress

Building back America's middle class - the working families who have been the vital center of our nation's economic strength and social progress - is exactly what our country has long needed. The people have been ahead of the politicians in understanding that. Especially after the severe challenges that our families have endured, it's time that we invest in the American people, and for the American people. That's what the President's jobs and family plans would do for Vermonters and all Ameri… Continue Reading


Leahy Announces Restoration Of The Power Of The Purse: Reforms For A Return To Congressionally Directed Spending In Fiscal Year 2022

(MONDAY, April 26, 2021) - Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Monday his intent to restore one of Congress' constitutional powers, the power to approve congressionally-directed spending items, and to do so with enhanced transparency and accountability. The Senate Appropriations Committee will, on a bipartisan basis, accept requests for congressionally directed spending items for appropriations bills for the fiscal year that begins October 1, 2021. As earl… Continue Reading

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