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

06.27.11

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Supreme Court Decision In Arizona Free Enterprise Club’s Freedom Club PAC v. Bennett, Secretary Of State Of Arizona

"In yet another closely divided opinion, five justices overturned a state law designed to fight corruption in elections. The Arizona Citizens Clean Elections Act sought to increase public discourse in that state's elections, and was approved by Arizona voters in response to several political scandals. But today, five justices overturned that law, holding that the public matching funds available to candidates somehow restricts free speech. "I disagree with the Court, and agree with the dissen… Continue Reading


06.24.11

Leahy: General Dynamics of Williston Nets Nearly $300 M. Army Contract For More Hydra Rockets

(JUNE 24) -- Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has announced a $285,970,132.30 extension of a U.S. Army contract with General Dynamics Armaments and Technical Products. Of the contract total, 71 percent will pay for work, managed in Williston, on Hydra 2.75-inch rockets. The contract will sustain 40 jobs at the General Dynamics Williston facility, which employs 400 workers. The U.S. Army Contracting Command in Redstone Arsenal, Ala., awarded the contract, exercising an option on an existing cont… Continue Reading


06.24.11

Senate Judiciary Committee To Examine Impact Of Supreme Court Decisions On Access To Justice, Corporate Accountability

(Friday, June 24, 2011) - The Senate Judiciary Committee, under the chairmanship of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), will hold a hearing June 29 to examine how recent Supreme Court decisions will impact Americans' access to justice and affect corporate behavior. Recent Court opinions that will be discussed include Wal-Mart v. Dukes, Janus Capital Group, Inc. v. First Derivative Traders, and AT&T Mobility v. Concepcion. The final decisions of the Supreme Court's term are expected to be announ… Continue Reading


06.23.11

Comment of Senator Patrick Leahy On Passage Of H.R. 1249, the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act

"Long-awaited patent reform moves one step closer to becoming law today with the House's action on the America Invents Act. This bill will unleash American Innovation and create good, well-paying jobs for American workers. It is commonsense legislation that goes to the heart of our shared agenda: reinvigorating the American economy and promoting job growth. "I commend Chairman Smith, Mr. Hoyer, and others for their work to create and pass true patent reform. I particularly thank my friend fr… Continue Reading


06.23.11

Senate Judiciary Committee Reports Leahy-Authored Civilian Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act

(Thursday, June 23, 2011) - The Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday approved legislation authored by Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to provide accountability for American contractors and government employees working abroad. The Civilian Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act (CEJA) would close a gap in current law to ensure that government employees and contractors working overseas are not immune from prosecution for criminal acts. "Now, more than ever, Congress must make sure that our c… Continue Reading


06.23.11

Comment of Senator Patrick Leahy On Supreme Court Decision In Sorrell v. IMS Health Inc.

"Today the Supreme Court has overturned a sensible Vermont law that sought to protect the privacy of the doctor-patient relationship. This divided ruling is a win for data miners and large corporations and a loss for those of us who care about privacy not only in my home state of Vermont but across the nation. States like Vermont must be able to protect the privacy of sensitive information exchanged between a doctor and patient. This decision undermines that ability, and risks unduly influenc… Continue Reading


06.23.11

Comment of Senator Patrick Leahy On The President's Address To The Nation On Withdrawal Of Some Troops From Afghanistan

"The good news is that the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan has finally begun, and for that I commend the President. But I had hoped to see significantly more troops coming home immediately and a sharper reduction over the coming months, and I will work with others to encourage the President and our military commanders to expedite this process. We can neither justify nor afford the human and fiscal costs of this war." # # # # #… Continue Reading


06.22.11

Leahy Joins Democratic Leaders, Others To Reintroduce Comprehensive Immigration Reform Bill

(Wednesday, June 22, 2011) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), joined with Senators Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), John Kerry (D-Mass.), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) to reintroduce a comprehensive immigration reform bill aimed at addressing the broken immigration system with tough, smart, and fair measures. The bill includes measures to strengthen border security, enhance worksite enforcement of immigration laws, and requirements that … Continue Reading


06.22.11

House Nears Vote On Counterpart Bill To Senator Leahy’s America Invents Act

At-a-glance facts on the Senate and House patent reform bills available here.… Continue Reading


06.22.11

Senator Leahy: Time to Narrow and Sharpen Our Goals in Afghanistan

What if we had never gone to war in Iraq? I wonder where our country might be today if we had never made that tragic mistake. Thousands of American families would never have stood before flag-draped coffins, grieving over young lives cut short. A trillion dollars in debt would not be burdening our economy, to be paid back by our children and grandchildren. Our troops did all we asked of them and more. In the toll they paid, and in the burden laid upon the nation, the war in Iraq cost u… Continue Reading


06.22.11

Leahy Chairs Hearing on IP Oversight Efforts

(Wednesday, June 22, 2011) - The Senate Judiciary Committee led by Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) held an oversight hearing today on the administration's efforts to protect American intellectual property. Promoting American innovation and protecting American intellectual property has been a key focus of legislative efforts in the Senate Judiciary Committee. The Senate earlier this year approved the Committee-passed America Invents Act by a vote of 95-5. The House of Representatives is consid… Continue Reading


06.21.11

Comment of Senator Patrick Leahy on Fee Diversion and House Consideration of H.R. 1249, the America Invents Act

"I again commend Chairman Smith, Mr. Watt and others for the work they have done on the America Invents Act. While I am disappointed that the bill will not go to the House floor with the specific language contained in the Senate-passed bill to end fee diversion, the America Invents Act remains legislation that will be a tremendous boon for American inventors, American manufacturers, and American jobs. I believe that the fee diversion language in the manager's amendment, coupled with a commitme… Continue Reading


06.20.11

Leahy, Portman Introduce Bill To Help States Keep Ex-Offenders From Returning To Crime

(Monday, June 20, 2011) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio) Monday introduced legislation to help improve public safety and reduce prison costs for federal, state and local governments. The Second Chance Reauthorization Act improves existing assistance programs to help state and local authorities more successfully reintegrate prisoners into their communities and reduce the rate of repeat offenses. The Second Chance Act was first enacted in 2007, and provided resour… Continue Reading


06.20.11

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy on World Refugee Day

This year, we celebrate the 60th anniversary of the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. I am pleased that today, June 20, the international community is celebrating World Refugee Day, an important opportunity to recognize the continuing plight of the millions of refugees around the world who deserve our protection. It is also a moment to celebrate the accomplishments of refugees who have been resettled and are building new lives in the countries that welcomed them. The theme o… Continue Reading


06.20.11

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Supreme Court Decision In Wal-Mart V. Dukes

The Supreme Court today issued an opinion in Wal-Mart v. Dukes, a class-action lawsuit filed on behalf of 1.5 million female Wal-Mart employees. At issue was whether the corporation discriminated against its female employees in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. "The aspect of the Supreme Court's decision today in Wal-Mart v. Dukes that involved a deep division is most troublesome, and undercuts the ability of this class of female employees to even get through the courth… Continue Reading


06.17.11

Leahy, Grassley Request Briefings On Revised FBI Operations Guide

(Friday, June 17, 2011) - The Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee Friday sent a letter to FBI Director Robert Mueller, urging the FBI to provide an updated briefing to the Committee on proposed changes to the Domestic Investigations and Operations Guide (DIOG), before the new guidelines are implemented. The Committee was last briefed on the revised edition of the DIOG last year. Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Ranking Member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) also r… Continue Reading


06.16.11

Leahy Hails Senate’s ‘Watershed’ Vote To End Ethanol Tax Subsidies

[In a strong and unprecedented roll call on Thursday afternoon, the U.S. Senate voted 73 to 27 to end a major tax break for producers of ethanol. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) voted for the Feinstein Amendment to kill the ethanol tax break, as did Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). Leahy hopes the breakthrough vote will give new impetus to an effort he also supports to end tax breaks long enjoyed by the largest oil companies. Following are Leahy's comments after the vote:] "This vote was a watersh… Continue Reading


06.16.11

The Importance Of Patent Reform


06.16.11

Digital Privacy in the Digital Age: The Future is Now

Remarks Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Committee On The Judiciary, 21st Annual "Computers, Freedom & Privacy Conference 2011 - The Future Is Now" Georgetown University Law Center Washington, DC June 16, 2011 As Prepared For Delivery Thank you, Marc [Rotenberg]. I commend Marc for the all of the great work he is doing as the President of the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC). He is also a former member of my staff and a part of the extended Leahy … Continue Reading


06.16.11

Judiciary Committee Approves Bill To Extend FBI Director Mueller’s Term

(Thursday, June 16, 2011) - The Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday approved legislation to provide a one-time, two-year extension of FBI Director Robert Mueller's term. In May, President Obama requested that Congress enact legislation providing for the extension. The bill approved by the Judiciary Committee addressed concerns about the scope and intent of the legislative proposal. The legislation is consistent with previous actions by Congress which have never posed constitutional difficulti… Continue Reading

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