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Press Releases

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

06.16.11

Politico: The Importance Of Patent Reform

We have seen tremendous technological advancements in the past 60 years, as computers shrank from the size of a closet to wireless technology that fits in the palm of your hand. Yet all this time, patent laws protecting U.S. technology remained largely unchanged. We cannot protect the technology of today with the tools of the past. This year, for the first time, China is expected to become the world's leading patent issuer, surpassing the U.S. and Japan in the number of patents granted. To keep… Continue Reading


06.15.11

Vermont Counties Granted Disaster Declaration

MONTPELIER - Gov. Peter Shumlin and Vermont's Congressional delegation announced tonight that federal aid would become available to Vermont homeowners and renters in seven counties hardest hit by this spring's flooding. In addition, public assistance to help pay for road, bridge and infrastructure repair will also be forthcoming in those counties. The Governor and Vermont's Congressional delegation received notice of federal approval from the White House and the Federal Emergency Management Age… Continue Reading


06.15.11

In Advance Of World Refugee Day, Leahy Introduces Refugee Protection Act

(Wednesday, June 15, 2011) - U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is continuing his efforts to enact legislation to ensure U.S. protection for refugees and asylum seekers fleeing persecution in their home countries. Today, Leahy introduced the Refugee Protection Act of 2011, a bill he first introduced in 1999 with bipartisan support. The Refugee Protection Act will help address shortfalls in current law, and help the United States fulfill its obligations under the 1951 Refugee Convention. Congr… Continue Reading


06.15.11

Sens. Leahy, Lautenberg Lead Effort To Boost Funding To Address Crisis Of White Nose Syndrome In Bats

(WEDNESDAY, June 14) -- U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Frank R. Lautenberg (D-N.J.) have been joined by 11 Senate colleagues in calling for adequate funding to address the deadly white-nose syndrome (WNS) that is decimating bat populations in Vermont, New Jersey and across the United States. The senators sent a letter last week to the chairman and ranking member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, which has jurisdiction over federal funding for the U.S. Fish and Wil… Continue Reading


06.15.11

Leahy Urges House To Consider Food Safety Accountability Act

(Wednesday, June 15, 2011) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is urging the House of Representatives to consider the Food Safety Accountability Act, a bill that will hold criminals accountable for those who knowingly violate food safety standards and place tainted food products on the market. "The American people should be confident that the food they buy for their families is safe," said Leahy. "The uncertainty and fear caused by the current E. coli outbreak in Europe only reinforces the need to… Continue Reading


06.14.11

Leahy Applauds U.S. Chamber Of Commerce Endorsement Of America Invents Act, Urges House Action On Bill

(Tuesday, June 14, 2011) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday applauded the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's endorsement of the America Invents Act, which is currently pending before the House of Representatives. The U.S. Senate in March voted overwhelmingly to pass companion legislation, which was authored by Leahy and Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah). "I was pleased that the United States Chamber of Commerce today wrote to Members of the House of Representatives in support of the America Invents A… Continue Reading


06.14.11

Senate Confirms Two Judicial Nominees

(Tuesday, June 14, 2011) - The Senate Tuesday unanimously confirmed two pending nominations to fill vacancies on the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey. Judge Claire Cecchi's nomination was reported by the Senate Judiciary Committee on March 31, and Judge Esther Salas' nomination was reported by the Committee on April 7. Both nominations received unanimous support from the members of the Committee. Seventeen judicial nominations remain pending on the Senate's Executive Cale… Continue Reading


06.14.11

Leahy Renews Effort To Bring U.S. Into Compliance With International Consular Notification Treaty

(Tuesday, June 14, 2011) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) introduced legislation Tuesday to address a long-standing international concern regarding U.S. compliance with the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations (VCCR), a key treaty providing access for citizens detained abroad to their consulates. The Leahy-authored Consular Notification Compliance Act will give jurisdiction to federal courts to review the cases of foreign nationals currently on death row in the United States who did not recei… Continue Reading


06.13.11

Statement Of Senator Leahy At The Groundbreaking Ceremony Of Thayer Commons In Burlington

Thank you Nancy, for that kind introduction. There's a long list of others who deserve our thanks today - Nancy Owens, Amy Wright, Gus Seelig, Polly Nichols, Brenda Torpy … and the list goes on. I want to especially thank Mayor Kiss and his administration for supporting this project. And of course Representative Mark Larson. An affordable housing accomplishment like this doesn't happen by accident, and I'm so proud to have been part of the superb team that is making it a reality. … Continue Reading


06.12.11

Patent changes may help state’s inventors

Five years ago, electrical engineer Denis Place and two partners left Suss MicroTec AG, in Waterbury, a German-owned manufacturer of machines to make microchips, and formed their own company based on an idea they had for testing those chips. Today, Suss MicroTec is gone, and Place and his partners, with a patent in hand for their testing process, have a new company in Winooski. It"s called SemiProbe, with eight employees, and big plans for the future. "In terms of employees, over the next five… Continue Reading


06.09.11

Leahy Secures $2 M. For Vermont Workforce Development Project That Matches Vermonters With Their Future Vermont Employers

(THURSDAY, June 9) -- U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Thursday that the U.S. Department of Labor has released $2 million in funding for workforce development training provided by the Vermont Healthcare and Information Technology Education Center (HITEC) in Williston. Leahy, a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, secured the funds in last year's annual appropriations bill. Leahy said, "Training and practical experience can turn the liability of unemployment and und… Continue Reading


06.08.11

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On His Vote Wednesday Against The Senate Amendment To Weaken The New Law Targeting Excessive ‘Swipe’ Fees Imposed By Banks On Merchants (And Passed Along To Consumers)

[The U.S. Senate Wednesday narrowly derailed a bid by banks to weaken a new law, included in last year's Wall Street Reform Bill, that targets the excessive 'swipe' fees that banks charge merchants when consumers use debit cards for their purchases. The swipe fee reforms -- authored in the Senate by Senator Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) - are about to take effect. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) was a leading cosponsor of the Durbin reforms and opposed the amendment offered Wednesday to undermine them… Continue Reading


06.08.11

Senate Judiciary Committee Holds Hearing On Extending Service Of FBI Director Mueller

Member statements, witness testimony and a webcast are available online. Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee, Hearing On The President's Request To Extend The Service Of FBI Director Robert Mueller June 8, 2011 Nearly one month ago, the President requested that Congress authorize a limited extension of Robert Mueller's service as the Director of the FBI. President Obama spoke of "the ongoing threats facing the United States, as well as the lea… Continue Reading


06.07.11

Delegation Asks Obama For Additional Disaster Assistance

, June 7 - Vermont's congressional delegation on Tuesday sent a letter to President Barack Obama supporting the addition of Washington and Caledonia Counties to Vermont's federal disaster declaration request. The additional request was made by Gov. Peter Shumlin on Monday in response to damage caused by severe storms, which occurred after the initial disaster declaration request was sent on May 27th. Following that initial request, the delegation wrote a similar letter to the president. "Consi… Continue Reading


06.07.11

Leahy Renews Push For Data Privacy Legislation

(Tuesday, June 7, 2011) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday introduced comprehensive legislation to enhance protections for Americans' personal information and privacy. Leahy first sponsored the Personal Data Privacy and Security Act in 2005, and has reintroduced the legislation in each of the last three Congresses. He is a longtime leader in the protection of Americans' data privacy. The Personal Data Privacy and Security Act will establish a national standard for data breach notificatio… Continue Reading


06.06.11

Leahy, Price Introduce Companion Bills To Hold American Contractors Overseas Accountable Under U.S. Law

(Monday, June 6, 2011) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Congressman David Price (D-N.C.) have introduced companion bills to provide accountability for American contractors and government employees working abroad. The Civilian Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act (CEJA) builds on efforts in previous Congresses to enact legislation to close a gap in current law to ensure that government employees and contractors working overseas are not immune from prosecution for criminal acts. Leahy introduced… Continue Reading


06.06.11

The Leahy Letter -- June 13, 2011

Hunt Middle School Gets A Farm To School Visit From Senator Leahy Marcelle and Patrick Leahy join students at Hunt Middle School in Burlington for a healthy lunch and a discussion of the Farm to School program. Senator Leahy and his wife, Marcelle, recently visited Hunt Middle School in Burlington for a nutritious Farm to School lunch made with Vermont products. The visit spotlighted the benefits of serving healthy, local food in school cafeterias and kicked off the spring planting of… Continue Reading


06.06.11

Senate Confirms Solicitor General Nominee Donald Verrilli

(Monday, June 6, 2011) - The Senate Monday night voted overwhelmingly to confirm Donald Verrilli to be the Solicitor General of the United States. The Senate Judiciary Committee voted to report Verrilli's nomination to the full Senate on May 12. Shortly before the vote Monday night, the Senate reached an agreement to hold a final, confirmation vote on the nomination, vitiating a cloture motion filed before the Senate recessed on May 26, and avoiding the first filibuster of a Solicitor General … Continue Reading


05.30.11

Senator Leahy Offers A Perspective On Memorial Day From Flanders Fields

We are gathered in a cemetery consecrated by the sacrifice of soldiers of our countries who died in the final days of what, in their time, was called the "Great War" and "The War To End All Wars." It was a battle so fierce that almost a century later, as we gaze across their places of rest, we can still feel their valor and their anguish. These crosses, row on row, carry remembrance forward, and so does the annual reappearance of the poppies in these fields. Like the Vermonters who have falle… Continue Reading


05.27.11

Comment On Justice Department Settlement With Mortgage Companies On Military Foreclosures

"The settlement announced Thursday by the U.S. Department of Justice with mortgage servicing subsidiaries of Bank of America and Morgan Stanley is good news for the men and women in our military whose protections under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act have been violated. The last thing struggling Americans need right now is to be victimized by their home lenders. This is especially true of men and women risking their lives in the service of their country. I welcome the pledge by these firm… Continue Reading

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