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


Leahy Chairs Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing On Standard-Essential Patents

(Wednesday, July 11, 2012) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is chairing a hearing this morning on the use of exclusion orders to enforce "standard-essential" patents, which are used in key technologies such as wireless devices to allow interoperability. This next wave of the tech patent wars could potentially limit consumer access to popular technologies like the Xbox and the iPhone. Testimony, member statements, and a webcast of the hearing are available onl… Continue Reading


Justice Sandra Day O’Connor To Testify Before Leahy-Chaired Senate Judiciary Committee

(TUESDAY, July 10, 2012) - U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor will appear before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday, July 25, at a hearing entitled, "Ensuring Judicial Independence Through Civics Education," Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Tuesday. The hearing comes 31 years after Justice O'Connor's historic nomination was announced by President Ronald Reagan. O'Connor, the first woman to serve on the high court, has made civics education her focus since retiring i… Continue Reading


Leahy Urges Votes On Pending Judicial Nominations Without Further Delay

(Tuesday, July 10, 2012) - The Senate will vote Tuesday on the nomination of John Fowlkes, Jr., a federal district court nominee pending on the floor since April, but Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is urging final votes on nominees to long-pending judicial vacancies throughout the country. "What the American people and the overburdened Federal courts need are qualified judges to administer justice," said Leahy. "They are not helped by these partisan games. Following … Continue Reading


Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Food And Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act

[Judiciary Committee Chairman Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) issued the following comment Monday after President Barack Obama signed the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act into law. The measure includes several provisions championed by Senator Leahy, including one to ensure public access to information about potential health and safety dangers under the Freedom of Information Act, and another to increase penalties for trafficking counterfeit drugs.] "The Food and Drug Adminis… Continue Reading


Leahy Announces Nearly $10 M. Navy Contract For Goodrich-Vergennes

(MONDAY, July 2) -- Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Monday that Simmonds Precision Products, a subsidiary of the Goodrich Corporation operating in Vergennes, has been awarded a nearly $10 million contract from the U.S. Navy. The contract is for 120 Health and Usage Monitoring Systems, or HUMS, to be used in certain Navy helicopters, and overseas by the Government of Australia, under the Foreign Military Sales Program. The contract sustains jobs in Vergennes and lasts through March 2014.… Continue Reading


Leahy Welcomes Bipartisan Agreement And Passage Of Transportation/Student Loans/Flood Insurance Package

(FRIDAY, June 29) - U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) heralded final Senate and House approval Friday of a package of legislative bills that will bolster federal transportation funding for roads, bridges and transit systems, prevent the doubling of student loan interest rates, and extend the federal flood insurance program for property owners in flood-prone areas. With deadlines looming Sunday (July 1) for crucial congressional action on highway funding, student loan rates and authorization o… Continue Reading


Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Supreme Court’s Decision Upholding The Affordable Care Act

"Today's decision by the Supreme Court to uphold the Affordable Care Act is a win not only for the millions of Vermonters and other Americans who have long been victimized by a deeply flawed health care system, but for all Americans who will benefit as we continue to implement this landmark law. "Over much of the last century, generation after generation has unsuccessfully grappled with how to answer complex and increasingly urgent questions about how to let every American have access to quali… Continue Reading


Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Conviction Wednesday In Ethiopia Of Journalist Eskinder Nega

"The Ethiopian Government's use of vague anti-terrorism laws to silence the press has been widely and rightly condemned. The conviction of Eskinder Nega and other journalists, who are accused of nothing more than the peaceful exercise of rights clearly recognized under international law, is the work of a regime that fears the democratic aspirations of its own people. Over the years, United States administrations have provided Prime Minister Meles a veneer of legitimacy due to our shared intere… Continue Reading


As FOIA Anniversary Approaches, Leahy Calls For Passage Of ‘Faster FOIA Act’

(Wednesday, June 27, 2012) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), a congressional leader in open government issues, today marked the upcoming 46th anniversary of the enactment of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Under Leahy's leadership, the public's right to know has been bolstered in recent years through a number of legislative victories. Leahy is urging passage in the House of Representatives of the bipartisan Faster FOIA Act, which Leahy authored with Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas). The bil… Continue Reading


House Adopts Leahy-Authored Provision Extending Public Safety Officers Benefits To Nonprofit EMS Personnel

(WEDNESDAY, June 27) -- On Wednesday the U.S. House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved a bill to extend federal benefits to the surviving families of paramedics and emergency medical technicians killed or disabled in the line of duty who work or volunteer for nonprofit ambulance services. U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) championed this provision as part of a broad, bipartisan package of reforms to the Public Safety Officers' Benefit (PSOB) program designed to help ease the burden on … Continue Reading


Leahy-Authored Farm Bill Program For REAP Economic Zones Nets Northeast Kingdom More Than $500,000 In Agricultural Business Assistance

(TUESDAY, June 26) - Just days after U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) won Senate Farm Bill approval of a renewal of the charter for the Northeast Kingdom's successful decade-old Rural Economic Area Partnership (REAP) Zone, NEK's Zone status is bringing to Vermont more than $500,000 in new U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development business assistance grants. On Tuesday USDA Rural Development announced that six Vermont organizations will receive $615,578 in Rural Business Enterprise Grants … Continue Reading


Remarks Of Senator Patrick Leahy At The VAWA National Days of Action Rally

I am honored to stand with you here today at this rally for National VAWA Days of Action. For nearly two decades, the Violence Against Women Act has saved lives, and we must act now to see that this critical legislation is reauthorized. More than six months ago, Senator Crapo and I joined together to introduce S.1925, the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. I am proud to have worked across party lines to ensure that this important issue remains a priority for Congress and the co… Continue Reading


Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Rosenbaum Nomination And Calls To The GOP Leadership To End Obstruction

(Tuesday, June 26, 2012) - The Senate will vote today on the nomination of Robin Rosenbaum to be a United States District Judge for the Southern District of Florida. The nomination was reported by the Senate Judiciary Committee in March, and is one of 17 district and circuit nominations pending on the Senate calendar. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, and spoke on the Senate Floor Tuesday about the nomination and Republican obstruction of consensus nominees. L… Continue Reading


Leahy Chairs Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing On Deceptive Voter Practices And Intimidation Tactics In Federal Elections

(Tuesday, June 26, 2012) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is chairing a hearing this morning on the use of deceptive practices and voter intimidation in federal elections. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.) is testifying before the panel among others. Testimony, member statements, and a webcast of the hearing are available online. Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy, Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing on Prohibiting the Use of Deceptive Practices and Voter Intimida… Continue Reading


Leahy: Two Vermont Counties Net Police Hiring Grants

MONDAY (June 25) - Two Vermont counties have been awarded grants through the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Hiring Program, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Monday. The Essex and Franklin County Sheriff's Departments have each received awards through the COPS program. Grants authorized by the COPS Hiring program allow law enforcement agencies to hire or re-hire career officers. The grants provide 75 percent funding for approved entry-level salaries and benefits for three y… Continue Reading


Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Supreme Court Decision to Strike Down Montana’s 100-Year-Old Campaign Finance Law

"Today, without a hearing, the Supreme Court summarily struck down a 100-year-old Montana state law barring corporate contributions to political campaigns. The five Justices who two and a half years ago opened the floodgates to unlimited and unaccountable corporate spending on federal political campaigns with their decision in Citizens United, now have taken another step to break down the last public safeguards preventing corporate megaphones from drowning out the voices of hardworking American… Continue Reading


Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Supreme Court Decision In Arizona v. United States

"The Supreme Court reaffirmed what the Constitution makes clear: Congress has the authority to make laws setting our national immigration policy. By striking down three of the four provisions at issue in the case, the Court sent anti-immigrant activists a strong message. A patchwork of conflicting immigration laws is not a sustainable result, and I am pleased that the Supreme Court recognized that in striking down a number of overreaching provisions in the Arizona law. "Although the Court … Continue Reading


Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Supreme Court Decision That Mandatory Life Sentences Without Parole For Juveniles Violate The Constitution

[The Supreme Court held in a 5-4 decision today that laws that require sentencing juvenile offenders for certain offenses to life in prison without the possibility of parole violate the Constitution. Justice Kagan, writing for the majority and joined by Justices Kennedy, Ginsburg, Breyer, and Sotomayor, followed a long line of Eighth Amendment case law in finding that a sentencing scheme which requires life sentences without allowing any consideration of the special factors applying to juveniles… Continue Reading


Gov. Shumlin And Congressional Delegation: President Approves Disaster Declaration For May Storm

MONTPELIER, Vt. - Gov. Peter Shumlin and Vermont's Congressional delegation announced today that Vermont's request for a federal disaster declaration following damage caused by heavy rains, winds and flash flooding from May 29 has been approved by President Barack Obama. The declaration will provide financial assistance to communities as they repair damage caused by the storm. The declaration includes towns and cities in Addison, Lamoille, and Orleans counties that were damaged by high winds, … Continue Reading


Leahy And Shumlin: Revision Steps In To Save More Than 40 Jobs In Newport

Governor Peter Shumlin (D-Vt.) and U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Friday that Revision Military of Essex has finalized the purchase of MSA North America's (MSA) ballistic helmet business, saving more than 40 jobs at the MSA helmet manufacturing facility in Newport, Vt. Leahy said the Newport facility at the heart of the deal manufactures the Advanced Combat Helmet (ACH), the lightweight, life-saving helmet issued to nearly every U.S. soldier. Leahy said he learned earlier this … Continue Reading

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