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Press Releases

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

09.25.19

Grassley and Leahy Introduce EB-5 Reform Bill

(Sept. 25, 2019) - Senators Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), leading members and former chairmen of the Senate Judiciary Committee, have introduced legislation to tackle fraud, abuse and national security threats in the EB-5 Investor Visa Program. The bipartisan EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act addresses concerns that the Department of Homeland Security has long expressed about ongoing abuse and exploitation of vulnerabilities in the program. "For many years, I've expressed conce… Continue Reading


09.24.19

Statement of Vice Chairman Leahy On The Joint Resolution Of Disapproval Of President Trump's Declaration Of A National Emergency

Sometimes casting a vote on the Senate floor is just a matter of course. It is something we do routinely, usually without considering the impact of that vote on the Senate as an institution, let alone on our constitutional republic as we know it. This week's vote on President Trump's national emergency declaration is different. It is a pivotal moment in this body's history. It is a stress test of the very notion of separation of powers. And it will be viewed for decades as the moment when Congr… Continue Reading


09.24.19

Statement On Environmental Defenders In The Philippines

Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, killings of environmental defenders are shockingly common in Latin America, Africa, and Asia. The assassination of Berta Caceres in Honduras three years ago, orchestrated by top officials of a hydroelectric company and carried out by retired and active duty soldiers who had received training from the United States, was emblematic of the widespread use of harassment, threats, and murder to silence those who courageously call for changes in policies and practices to prote… Continue Reading


09.24.19

Comment In Opposition To The Nomination of Daniel Jorjani To Be Solicitor At The Department Of The Interior

"I opposed the nomination of Daniel Jorjani to serve as the Interior Department's Solicitor, in large part because he was a chief architect of the deeply harmful policy to inject political interference into the Department's Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) responses. This legally dubious policy - and Mr. Jorjani's role in creating it - has raised serious, bipartisan concerns, and is now under investigation by the Department's Inspector General. I also share the concerns that Mr. Jorjani may hav… Continue Reading


09.23.19

Leahy: Burlington International Airport Awarded $15.9 Million For Taxiway

(MONDAY, Sept. 23, 2019) -- Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy (D), Vice Chairman of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee, announced Monday that Burlington International Airport will receive $15.9 million in grant funding from the Federal Aviation Administration to continue its work on a parallel taxiway. The grant is the largest single award ever received by the airport. The funding will allow for the reconstruction of Taxiway G to the existing taxiway B/K intersection generating a full parall… Continue Reading


09.20.19

Comments Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Passing Of Paul Bruhn

It hit hard when Marcelle and I learned of the sudden loss of our dear, dear friend, Paul Bruhn. Our hearts ache for Colleen and for all who knew and loved him. He is one of the finest Vermonters I ever worked with, and one of the dearest and best friends we have both had, and we loved him. His work on historic preservation is equal to the work that anyone has ever done for the State of Vermont. Those countless success stories are preserved in brick, mortar, stone and wood across our state.… Continue Reading


09.19.19

Senate Appropriations Committee Approves Leahy-Led $250 M. In Critical Election Security Funding

(Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019) - The Senate Appropriations Committee Thursday approved $250 million in funds to support state and local governments' efforts to strengthen election security ahead of the 2020 elections. The funding was included in a bipartisan amendment to the Financial Services and General Government (FSGG) Appropriations bill and sponsored by Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), and Se… Continue Reading


09.18.19

Statement of Vice Chairman Leahy (D-Vt.) Opposing the Motion to Proceed to H.R. 2470

Today, we will vote on whether to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to H.R. 2470, the House Defense, Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, Energy and Water, and the State and Foreign Operations Appropriations bills. I strongly urge Senators to vote no. The underlying House bills are good bills. If this were a vote to consider the House bills, it would be easy. But that is not what we are doing. Senator McConnell has made clear that H.R. 2470 is simply a vehicle for considerati… Continue Reading


09.18.19

Leahy: Vermont Tapped To Receive Grant To Create A Dairy Business Innovation Initiative

(WEDNESDAY, September 18, 2019) - Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy (D), Vice Chairman of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee, Wednesday announced that the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food, and Markets (VAAFM) will soon receive funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to create regional a Dairy Business Innovation Initiative. Leahy, a leading member of the Agriculture Committee, helped lead the effort to authorize the new dairy innovation program in the 2018 Farm Bill. Throug… Continue Reading


09.18.19

Air Force Answers Question About Afterburner Use For F-35s On National Guard Bases

The following is a response provided to Senator Leahy by the Air Force to his inquiry about whether the Headquarters of the Air Force was directing Air National Guard units to plan for additional afterburner use. The Vermont Air National Guard (VTANG) has long said that VTANG "does not intend to fly more than 5 percent of takeoffs with afterburners." An internal email from Air Combat Command shared with opponents of the F-35 in Vermont claimed a contractor had said noise studies for Joint Reserv… Continue Reading


09.17.19

Leahy, Sanders Welch Spotlight Friday Deadline For VT Dairy Farmers To Enroll In Dairy Margin Coverage Program

(TUESDAY, Sept. 17, 2019) -- Senator Patrick Leahy (D), Senator Bernie Sanders (I) and Representative Peter Welch (D) are reminding Vermont dairy farmers that signup for the Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program ends this Friday, Sept. 20, giving producers just a few more days to enroll. As a result of the low dairy prices early this year, signing up for the DMC program now will assure most farmers of payments this year. More than 500 eligible Vermont dairy producers have already signed up and re… Continue Reading


09.13.19

Leahy Advances Funding To Repair Waterbury Dam

(FRIDAY, Sept. 13, 2019) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Friday announced that the Senate Appropriations Committee has approved $20 million to repair certain high-risk dams, including the Waterbury Dam, in the Senate's annual Energy and Water Appropriations bill. The bill was unanimously reported by the committee on Thursday and must be approved by the full Congress and signed into law by the President. Leahy said: "The Waterbury Dam and the Waterbury Reservoir draw people from around Vermont a… Continue Reading


09.12.19

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy On Falun Gong Congressional Record

Mr. LEAHY. Throughout my years in the Senate I have met with people from around the world who have been persecuted by their own governments. But the stories I have heard from survivors and family members of the victims of China's efforts to silence and eliminate religious minorities continue to shock me. The Chinese government systematically brutalizes millions of people, including Tibetan Buddhists, Uyghur Muslims, and Falun Gong practitioners. Those who practice Falun Gong use meditation and … Continue Reading


09.12.19

Republicans Reject Amendment Preventing President Trump From Stealing From The Military And Military Families To Pay For Ineffective Border Wall

(THURSDAY, Sept. 12, 2019) - Senate Appropriations Committee Republicans Thursday rejected an amendment offered by Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense Vice Chairman Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) meant to protect funding appropriated for the military and military families from being raided by President Trump to pay for an ineffective, vanity wall along the southern border. Leahy said: "The power of the purse is the Constitu… Continue Reading


09.12.19

Senate Republicans Reject Investing In American Communities, And Instead Vote To Fund Trump’s Ineffective Vanity Wall

(THURSDAY, Sept. 12, 2019) - Senate Appropriations Committee Republicans Thursday rejected a proposal by Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to invest in American communities, instead directing billions of taxpayer dollars to President Trump's ineffective border wall. The Leahy proposal would redirect $5 billion from the Republicans' allocations for the Appropriations Committee's 12 subcommittees, commonly referred to as 302(b)s, from President Trump's ineffective wall to investments i… Continue Reading


09.10.19

Leahy Honored With ‘Congressional Champion Award’ For His Leadership In Addressing Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) In Former Conflict Zones

(TUESDAY, Sept. 10, 2019) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday was recognized for his long leadership on efforts to end the use of cluster munitions, anti-personnel landmines, and other unexploded ordnance (UXO), which continue to kill innocent civilians long after conflicts have ended. Legacies of War, a nonprofit, nonpartisan project dedicated to raising awareness about the history of the Vietnam War-era bombing during the secret war in Laos, presented Leahy with the Congressional Champio… Continue Reading


09.10.19

Vice Chairman Leahy Floor Address On President Trump Raiding Military Dollars For The Wall, And On The Assault On Congress's Constitutional Powers Of The Purse

Last week the Administration announced that it was raiding $3.6 billion from military construction projects to pay for President Trump's ineffective and controversial border wall. A new middle school at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, a child development center at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland, a new elementary school in Puerto Rico, and a fire-rescue station at Tyndall Air Force base in Florida, are among the projects canceled on orders from a President who apparently values a cynical campaign pro… Continue Reading


09.09.19

What is the Cost Of President Trump’s Wall?

Q: What Is The Cost Of Less Than 23 Miles Of President Trump's Ineffective Border Wall? A: Stealing From Children of Military Families. To build less than 23 miles of his ineffective border wall, President Trump cancelled 11 projects to replace schools and build a child development center on American military bases around the world. This included the School at Fort Campbell in Kentucky, Butner Elementary School in North Carolina, and the Ramey Unit School in Puerto Rico, impacting thousands … Continue Reading


09.04.19

Leahy: Vermont Will Receive $4 Million Grant To Continue Expansion Of State’s Opioid Response Strategies

(WEDNESDAY, Sept. 4, 2019) -- Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Wednesday announced that the Vermont Department of Health will soon receive its third State Opioid Response (SOR) grant of $4,020,896 from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Vermont now has been awarded a total of $10,140,700 from SAMHSA through SOR grants since the inception of the grant program. This funding from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health … Continue Reading


09.03.19

Leahy, Durbin, Schatz REAX To President Trump Robbing From The Military To Pay For His Vanity Wall

"Military construction projects are carefully scrutinized by Congress. We work with the military services to validate and review these projects thoroughly. It is vital that we balance their operational necessity with existing fiscal constraints. "The President is robbing the men and women of our armed services of funds meant for critical construction projects that are necessary to serve our troops, support our allies, deter our adversaries, and care for our military families - all to build … Continue Reading

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