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Press Releases

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

09.13.18

Appropriations Vice Chair Leahy Wins Significant Increase In Funding For Economic Development In Vermont Border Counties

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Vice Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced Thursday that a package of appropriations bills approved by the Senate includes $20 million in Northern Border Regional Commission (NBRC) grant funding, a $5 million increase over the previous year. The grants are part of a continuing effort, long supported by Leahy, to revitalize communities in Northern Vermont. It included an increase of $1 million, for a total $4 million, for a second year of funding… Continue Reading


09.13.18

Appropriations Vice Chair Leahy Announces Funding To Pay All Congressional Interns

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced Thursday that a package of appropriations bills approved by the Senate includes funding to pay congressional interns for the first time. The package includes $8.8 million to pay House interns and $5 million to pay Senate interns. The Senate funds will be in included in accounts used to pay staff and provides an average of $50,000 to each Senate office, an amount which varies by state. The $8.8 mill… Continue Reading


09.13.18

Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy Statement on the Defense, Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Conference Report

I am pleased to be here at the second appropriations conference of Fiscal Year 2019. The two bills before us-the Defense Appropriations bill, and the Labor, HHS, and Education bills-are the product of months of hard work and bipartisan cooperation, and I am pleased that we have been able to work out all of the differences between the House and Senate bills. These bills make important investments not only in our national security but also in the future of our country. Together they demons… Continue Reading


09.10.18

REAX Of Senator Leahy (D-Vt.) To The State Department's Announcement That The U.S. Will Order The Closure Of The PLO Office In Washington, DC

"A year and 9 months after President Trump's inauguration we have yet to see anything remotely resembling a credible plan for peace in the Middle East. Instead, all sides, including the White House, have taken unnecessary and provocative steps that make good-faith negotiations less likely and that have harmed innocent people. Forcing the PLO office in Washington to close will make the situation worse by cutting off one of the few official channels of communication with the Palestinians. Cutti… Continue Reading


09.06.18

Leahy Statement On Defending The Rule Of Law In Guatemala

The decision, announced last Friday, by Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales to not renew the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) after its current term expires next September, was a profound mistake. That mistake was further compounded on Tuesday when the government announced that the CICIG Commissioner, Ivan Velasquez, a respected Colombian jurist, had been summarily declared a "national security threat" and barred from re-entering the country. That is the kind of f… Continue Reading


09.06.18

Senate Floor Remarks Of Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy On FY 2019 Appropriations Bills: “A Path Forward”

In the last few months, the Senate has achieved record progress in processing appropriations bills. As we return from the Labor Day weekend, the Senate has already passed 9 of the 12 Appropriations bills by overwhelming margins and the Appropriations Committee has reported the remaining 3 bills with bipartisan support. The end of the fiscal year is only few short weeks away, but, because of the record pace of our work, there is no reason that we cannot conference all of these bills with th… Continue Reading


09.05.18

Opening Statement Of Senator Leahy At The 2018 Farm Bill Conference

I am glad we are convening today to reconcile our differences and enact a meaningful Farm Bill. Chairman Roberts and Ranking Member Stabenow, thank you for your commitment to a bipartisan process in crafting the Senate Farm Bill. As a former Chairman of this Committee, I know how much work goes into crafting a bill of this scope and substance. I have every expectation that if we work in the same bipartisan spirit that has guided the first seven Farm Bill conferences that I have been a part, we … Continue Reading


09.05.18

Leahy: $1 Million Granted To Vermont And Other States To Combat White Nose Syndrome

U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Wednesday that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service continues to support the fight against the bat-killing fungal disease white nose syndrome (WNS) by awarding $1 million in grants to 39 states, including Vermont, and the District of Columbia. Leahy, Vice Chairman of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee, has championed research and prevention of WNS, adding $1 million to this year's FWS science support budget, for a total of $3.5 million. The Sta… Continue Reading


09.05.18

Statement of Vice Chairman Leahy On The Conference Meeting For The "Minibus I" Appropriations Bill

I am pleased to be here for the first conference of the FY 2019 Appropriations season. The "minibus" before us contains three important appropriations bills. This minibus provides important resources for the support and care of our Nation's veterans, and it makes critical investments in our country's water infrastructure and energy programs. It also provides support to numerous agencies under the umbrella of the Legislative Branch. We have made a lot of progress toward an agreement that wil… Continue Reading


09.05.18

Comment Of Senator Leahy On His Questioning Of Judge Kavanaugh On Hacked Democratic Files

Between 2001 and 2003, two Republican staffers on the Senate Judiciary Committee regularly hacked into the private computer files of six Democratic senators, including me. They stole 4,670 files, and they used them to assist in getting President Bush's most controversial judicial nominees confirmed. This became public in late 2003 when The Wall Street Journal happened to print some of the stolen materials. The ringleader behind this massive theft was a Republican Senate staffer named Manny M… Continue Reading


09.04.18

Opening Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) At The U.S. Supreme Court Nomination Hearing Of Judge Brett Kavanaugh

I have served in the Senate for 44 years, a span that includes 19 nominations to the Supreme Court. I have never seen so much at stake with a single seat. And I have never seen such a dangerous rush to fill it. President Trump promised that he would only nominate judges to the Supreme Court who would overturn Roe v. Wade. Judges who would dismantle the Affordable Care Act. Judges who would re-shape our judiciary. If that is not judicial activism, I do not know what is. Judge Kavanaugh, wi… Continue Reading


08.31.18

Leahy REAX To The Decision Of Guatemalan President Morales To Oppose The Renewal Of The International Commission Against Impunity

"There are two undeniable realities in Guatemala: The people are fed up with the corruption, violence and impunity that plague that country, and those in power will do whatever they can to avoid justice. That is why the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) was established 11 years ago, and that is why it is no less necessary today. "President Morales' announcement, in the company of uniformed military officers, that he opposes the renewal of CICIG, just days after… Continue Reading


08.30.18

Statement Of Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy On A Pay Raise For The Federal Civilian Work Force

The United States Senate has a long history of supporting the federal work force by providing competitive pay, which attracts and retains talented women and men to the United States Government, who work every day to serve Americans. On August 1, the Senate passed a pay raise of 1.9 percent with strong bipartisan support in a vote of 96 to 2. The Senate will continue to move forward on appropriations bills that have bipartisan support, that are at spending levels agreed to in the bipartisan bu… Continue Reading


08.28.18

Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy On The Decision Not To Submit A Second Rescission Package

"This is a welcome decision. In the Senate, we are moving forward on appropriations bills that have bipartisan support, that are at spending levels agreed to in the bipartisan budget deal, and that reject poison pill riders and controversial authorizing language. This is a process that requires trust, a trust that would have been damaged by such a proposal. Rescinding funds that had been agreed to by Congress and signed into law by the President, in the waning days of the fiscal year, would h… Continue Reading


08.27.18

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Passing Of Barrie Dunsmore

Marcelle and I are just two of the countless Vermonters whose lives were brightened by having known Barrie. As Vermonters we have been enriched and enlightened, and sometimes challenged, by his perceptive commentaries, in which he shared his experience and his sharp insights, drawn from a remarkable career that spanned the globe. He had a great sense of history, which too often is missing today. I looked forward to each of his essays, which I frequently shared with my staff and others. At th… Continue Reading


08.25.18

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Death Of Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.)

Marcelle and I are saddened by this loss, and we send our love and our respects to Cindy and their entire family. I think of the last time we met and said goodbye. We both were hopeful that it would not be the last time. He loved his country, and we also both respected and were willing to defend the Senate's special and independent role in American government. In the Navy and in his public service, his goal was not to bide time, but to make a difference. I know that he felt, as I do, that… Continue Reading


08.24.18

BREAKING: Leahy REAX To WH Decision To Redirect Humanitarian & Other U.S. Aid Away From West Bank And Gaza

"After a year and eight months in office, President Trump has yet to announce anything remotely resembling a coherent policy to address the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Instead, the White House has engaged in a series of provocative and harmful acts which have exacerbated tensions and set back prospects for constructive negotiations. Inhabitants of Gaza are already suffering severe hardships under the tyranny of Hamas and border restrictions imposed by Israel. It is the Palestinian people, v… Continue Reading


08.24.18

Vermont Highlights Of The Senate-Passed Defense, LHHS Appropriations Package

The Defense, Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education and Related Programs "Minibus" appropriations bill, accounting for 65 percent of all discretionary spending in the annual federal budget, includes significant wins spearheaded by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, for Vermont families. The Senate passed the bill Thursday night in a strong bipartisan vote of 85 to 7. LIHEAP: The package includes $3.69 billion for LIHEAP, a $50 million… Continue Reading


08.24.18

Leahy Champions Fight Against Opioids In Senate-Passed Appropriations Bill

Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) led the fight against the opioid epidemic in another Senate-passed appropriations bill Thursday, securing $3 billion in new funding to address the crisis. The bill also contains Leahy-authored legislation to establish three "Rural Centers of Excellence on Substance Use Disorders" and directs $10 million to a new research program in the Department of Defense to study alternatives to opioids for chronic pain management. In 2017… Continue Reading


08.23.18

Senate Passes Defense, LHHS "Minibus" Appropriations Bill

The Senate Thursday passed the Defense, Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education and Related Programs "Minibus" appropriations bill, accounting for 65 percent of all discretionary spending, notching the latest bipartisan achievement in returning the appropriations process to regular order and fulfilling core goals of the bipartisan budget deal signed into law in February. The bill passed with broad bipartisan support by a vote of 85 to 7. Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman L… Continue Reading

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