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


Leahy Introduces Federal Employee Access To Information Act To Protect Federal Employees From Retaliation For Filing FOIA Requests

(THURSDAY, March 18, 2021) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), along with Representatives Carolyn B. Maloney (D-N.Y.) and Gerald E. Connolly (D-Va.), Thursday introduced the Federal Employee Access to Information Act to ensure that federal employees are able to use the nation's premier transparency law, the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), without reprisal. FOIA helps expose government wrongdoing and abuses, and Leahy believes that federal employees must be free to use FOIA in the same way as … Continue Reading


Leahy, Grassley Introduce EB-5 Investor Visa Integrity Reform Bill

Today, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), a senior member and former chairman of the Judiciary Committee, and Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, introduced the EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act of 2021 to address fraud and national security vulnerabilities in the EB-5 investor visa Regional Center Program, which has been exploited and abused for years. Their bill includes significant integrity reforms to protect against fraud and national security weakness… Continue Reading


Durbin, Leahy, Feinstein, Klobuchar Statement On House Passage Of VAWA Reauthorization Act

(WEDNESDAY, March 17, 2021) - U.S. Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today released the following statements after the House of Representatives late Wednesday passed the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2021. The Senators have been working to prepare companion legislation, which they hope to introduce in the… Continue Reading


Statement On Reevaluating Trump’s Border Wall

The previous Administration's taxpayer funded vanity wall along the Southern Border was never a real solution to addressing the challenge of immigration in our country. It was a slogan made for a bumper sticker - not an effective national policy. A wall, no matter how high or secure, will not deter families and children who are turning themselves in at the border in an effort to flee violence, chaos, and poverty in their home countries. Congress was clear that the funding appropriated for CB… Continue Reading


Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy: The United States And Cuba

For more than half a century, the United States has imposed a labyrinth of punishing economic sanctions on Cuba, an impoverished island of 11 million people, in an attempt to pressure its government to hold democratic elections. I certainly share the goal of democracy, but Cuba is no closer to free and fair elections than any time in its history. Rather than continue a policy that had failed to achieve any of its goals and that holds Cuba to a standard we do not apply to many other repressive … Continue Reading


Response Of Vermont’s Congressional Delegation – Senator Leahy, Senator Sanders, And Representative Welch -- To U.S. Customs And Border Protection’s Surveillance Proposal

"The Congressional Delegation has serious concerns about the Border Patrol's plan to install massive surveillance camera towers - involving pristine farmland - along the U.S.-Canadian border. Community members have expressed concerns over what they feel has been limited outreach and communication related to privacy intrusions, property rights, and environmental hazards. The Congressional Delegation shares these concerns. The Delegation will be requesting a 60-day extension of the public comment … Continue Reading


Response Of Vermont’s Congressional Delegation – Senator Leahy, Senator Sanders, And Representative Welch -- To U.S. Customs And Border Protection’s Surveillance Proposal

"The Congressional Delegation has serious concerns about the Border Patrol's plan to install massive surveillance camera towers - involving pristine farmland - along the U.S.-Canadian border. Community members have expressed concerns over what they feel has been limited outreach and communication related to privacy intrusions, property rights, and environmental hazards. The Congressional Delegation shares these concerns. The Delegation will be requesting a 60-day extension of the public comment … Continue Reading


GAO Reports Find Agencies Withheld More Information From The Public In Recent Years

(March 17, 2021)-Today, Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, the Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, Senator Patrick Leahy, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Appropriations, Senator John Cornyn, and Senator Chuck Grassley issued the following statement in recognition of Sunshine Week-held each year to highlight the importance of government transparency-after the release of two Government Accountability Office (GAO) reports that found that agencies increasingly withheld information und… Continue Reading


Leahy, Grassley And Feinstein Introduce Bill To Reinforce Transparency In Wake Of Supreme Court FOIA Decision And Recent Regulations

(MONDAY, March 15, 2021) -- Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), with Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Wednesday introduced the Open and Responsive Government Act, to reverse recent developments that undermine the public's right to access information and hold government accountable. The legislation would restore a longstanding legal interpretation of the Freedom of Information Act's (FOIA) exemption regarding confidential commercial information, which was recent… Continue Reading


Statement On The Passing Of U.S. Second Circuit Court Judge Peter Hall

Marcelle and I are so saddened to learn of Judge Peter Hall's passing. In addition to being a highly respected jurist, Peter was a good friend. Vermont and the country are richer for his many years of service. When he announced he would be taking senior status just last week, Judge Hall's tenure - as both judge and prosecutor -- was noted for his fair and thoughtful approach to the law. Our condolences go out to Judge Hall's family, as well as to all those in Vermont's legal community who kn… Continue Reading


Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy: Central American Democracy Faces Existential Threats

Democracy in Central America is facing existential threats. In Guatemala, the Constitutional Court is under assault by the Congress and the Executive. If the Court's magistrates are replaced with cronies of the other branches of government, any semblance of a credible justice system will be lost. In Honduras, corruption permeates the highest ranks of government, civil society activists are under attack, and the justice system is complicit in perpetuating lawlessness and impunity. El Salvad… Continue Reading


Cornyn, Leahy Introduce Bill To Enhance Cybersecurity

U.S. Senators John Cornyn (R-TX) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) today introduced the National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium Act to authorize the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to work with the National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium (NCPC) to help prepare for and respond to cybersecurity risks at the national, state, and local levels. "Our communities must be prepared to defend against the ever-evolving cyber threats they face," said Sen. Cornyn. "Texas is fortunate to have uni… Continue Reading


Leahy Hails Final Passage Of The American Rescue Plan

(WEDNESDAY, March 10, 2021) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, hailed House passage Wednesday of the American Rescue Plan, which will bring much-needed financial relief to Vermonters and help to Vermont communities. The House passed the final version of the package that the Senate had passed on Saturday. Leahy said that through direct assistance to Vermonters, financial aid for the State of Vermont and local municipalities, and dozens of other pro… Continue Reading


Leahy And Feinstein Support House VAWA Bill

(TUESDAY, March 9, 2021) - Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) released the following statement in support of the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act that was reintroduced in the House of Representatives: "Reauthorizing VAWA is long overdue since the law expired in 2018. The bipartisan bill introduced in the House mirrors legislation we introduced in the last Congress. Unfortunately, that bill was blocked in the Senate last Congress and didn't even… Continue Reading


Statement On Senate Passage Of The American Rescue Plan

Across our country, in every state, in every community, Americans are suffering. It doesn't matter if they are represented in Congress by Republicans or by Democrats, or whether they live in rural communities or in urban centers. All have suffered under an unprecedented health and economic crisis that has claimed the lives of more than 520,000, and of more than 2.58 million people around the world. Families are living under the tremendous burden of not knowing how they will pay their rent, fe… Continue Reading


Comments On The American Rescue Plan

Soon, every member of the United States Senate will have the chance to stand up and vote for, or vote against, relief for the millions of Americans who continue to struggle in the wake of this devastating pandemic. There can be no question: while we are finally beginning to turn the page, in large part because President Biden has made relief and recovery a singular priority, millions of Americans continue to contract this virus, millions are out of work, and millions need support. The American… Continue Reading


Reaction Of Senate Appropriations Chair Patrick Leahy And House Foreign Affairs Committee Vice Chair Tom Malinowski On The ODNI Report On The Murder Of Jamal Khashoggi

(SATURDAY, Feb. 27, 2021) -- "We are concerned by early indications that the Biden Administration does not intend to impose a visa ban on all those responsible for Jamal Khashoggi's murder, including Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. U.S. law is unequivocal: section 7031(c) of H.R.133, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 requires that "officials of foreign governments and their immediate family members about whom the Secretary of State has credible information have been involved, d… Continue Reading


Bennet, Kaine, And Leahy Introduce Medicare-X Choice Act To Achieve Universal Health Care

- Today, U.S. Senators Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) reintroduced their legislation, the Medicare-X Choice Act, which would create a public option by expanding on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and Medicare. The Medicare Exchange (Medicare-X) plan would offer families, individuals, and small businesses low-cost health insurance, decrease the number of uninsured Americans, control the cost of health care, and increase competition in the health insurance mark… Continue Reading


Merkley, Leahy, Durbin, Colleagues Introduce Legislation To Tackle Corruption, Human Rights Violations In Honduras

Oregon's U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley, and Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Richard Durbin (D-IL) today led a group of eight lawmakers in introducing the Honduras Human Rights and Anti-Corruption Act of 2021-legislation that lays out a comprehensive framework for combating corruption, impunity, and human rights violations in Honduras. The introduction comes as U.S. federal prosecutors made public that they are investigating Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernández for accepting large brib… Continue Reading


Markey, Senate Colleagues Back President Biden’s Return To Nuclear Diplomacy With Iran

(February 23, 2021) - Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, led 10 of his colleagues in the reintroduction of the Iran Diplomacy Act. The legislation supports President Joseph Biden's diplomatic effort to return all sides to full-compliance with their commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran Nuclear Deal. Last week, the Biden administration formally accepted an invitation by the European Union to join… Continue Reading

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