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

12.17.10

Statement On H.R.6497, The Development, Relief, And Education For Alien Minors Act (DREAM Act)

The Senate will soon vote on whether we should debate the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act, or the DREAM Act. I have been a cosponsor of this important legislation since it was first introduced in the Senate in 2001, and I commend Senator Durbin and Senator Lugar for their hard work in advancing the DREAM Act this year. At the very least, we should have a debate about this important legislation. Enacting the DREAM Act will serve important priorities for our country and f… Continue Reading


12.17.10

Leahy To Introduce Forensics Reform Legislation In New Congress

(Friday, Dec. 17, 2010) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Friday announced his intent to introduce legislation in January to strengthen the criminal justice system by reforming forensic science in laboratories across the country. Leahy chaired hearings in the 111th Congress to examine serious issues in forensic science and the reliability of such evidence in the criminal justice system. Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committ… Continue Reading


12.17.10

Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Judicial Nominations

Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee, On Judicial Nominations December 17, 2010 Last night, as snow fell in Washington, D.C., the Senate freeze on confirming judges began to thaw a bit. I thank the leaders for clearing four of the 38 judicial nominations awaiting final action by the Senate. These nominations will fill a few of the historically high number of Federal judicial vacancies around the country, including in the Eastern District of Calif… Continue Reading


12.17.10

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Nominations To The Privacy And Civil Liberties Oversight Board

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Committee On The Judiciary, On Nominations To The Privacy And Civil Liberties Oversight Board December 16, 2010 "I welcome the President's announcement today that he intends to nominate two individuals to serve as Members of the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board. Congress created this Board at the recommendation of the 9-11 Commission, to ensure that privacy and civil liberties interests are appropriately considered when ou… Continue Reading


12.16.10

Senate Confirms Four Judicial Nominations; 34 Remain Pending

The Senate Thursday night confirmed four long-pending judicial nominations, each of which received unanimous support from the Senate Judiciary Committee. Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) said, "These confirmations are long overdue. For months, these nominations have languished before the Senate, without explanation and for no reason. Today, we confirm them unanimously. These confirmations will help fill a few of the judicial vacancies around the country, which have reached historically high le… Continue Reading


12.16.10

Sanders and Leahy Fight Senate Republican Stalling Tactics Blocking $11 Million to Keep Vermonters Warm this Winter

Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) today said Vermont would be in line for $10.8 million of a $5 billion appropriation for home heating assistance included in a spending bill that Senate Republicans are trying to block. One of the last must-do measures on the agenda before Congress adjourns for the year, the appropriations bill would prevent a 40 percent cut in the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Vermont's $10.8 million share would help keep senior citize… Continue Reading


12.15.10

Leahy: “Time Is Running Out” To Consider Nominations

, Wednesday, Dec. 15 - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) released the following statement today about the status of pending judicial and executive nominations, including the nomination of Jim Cole to be the Deputy Attorney General. The New York Times today published an editorial, "Advise and Obstruct," about the delays in considering pending judicial nominations. The Washington Post today published an editorial, "An Unacceptable Delay," about continuing objections by Se… Continue Reading


12.15.10

Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy In Remembrance Of Ambassador Richard Holbrooke

Remarks As Prepared For Delivery MR. LEAHY. Mr. President, it is with deep sadness that I speak today in memory of a dear friend, Ambassador Richard Holbrooke, who died on Monday at the far too early age of 69. I first met Dick years ago, long before he held his most recent post of Special Envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan. We had many conversations over the years, as Dick's career progressed and particularly during the war in the former Yugoslavia. Dick's skillful diplomacy that ended t… Continue Reading


12.15.10

Senator Leahy Votes No As Senate OKs Tax Package

[Following is the final statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) during Senate debate on the tax cut extension package, which the Senate approved Wednesday afternoon in a vote of 81 to 19.] Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy In Opposition To Wholesale Extension Of The Bush Tax Cuts I strongly oppose the tax deal now before the Senate. While I support tax relief for working and middle-income Americans, I am not willing to add $858 billion to the national debt in order to give enormous tax … Continue Reading


12.14.10

Leahy-Authored Bill To Assist Veterans Groups Set To Become Law

(Tuesday, Dec. 14, 2010) - The U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday approved legislation sponsored by Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to make veterans groups eligible to receive surplus property donations from the federal government. The bill, which is cosponsored by Sens. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii), will be sent to the President to be signed into law. The Senate unanimously passed the legislation in September. The Formerly Owned Resources for Veterans to Express Thank… Continue Reading


12.14.10

Senate Proposal To Wrap Up Budget For The Year Includes Leahy Truck Weight Extension For Vermont

(TUESDAY, Dec. 14) - U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday announced that a budget package soon to be introduced in the Senate includes a year-long extension of the pilot programs in Vermont and Maine that are moving heavy trucks off state secondary roads and onto the Interstate highway system. The provisions are sponsored by Leahy and Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), who also authored the pilot programs currently in effect in Vermont and Maine, which expire this month. Leahy is the second mos… Continue Reading


12.13.10

Comment On The Senate’s Vote On Proposed Tax Cuts

I support tax relief for working and middle-income Vermonters, but I am not willing to add another $858 billion to our national debt in order to give enormous tax breaks to multi-millionaires. I am first and foremost a Vermonter, and the citizens of Vermont elected me to express my Vermont values. In this case, I believe the deal on tax cuts is wrong for most Vermonters, and certainly wrong for our country. Given the overwhelming number of calls, letters, and emails I have received this pas… Continue Reading


12.13.10

Comment On Federal Court Ruling On Health Care Law

"While several judges have dismissed challenges to the Affordable Care Act, today, Judge Hudson of the Eastern District of Virginia declared that one provision of the law is unconstitutional. Judge Hudson did not issue an injunction requiring the federal government to suspend implementation of the Affordable Care Act, as the relevant section does not go into effect for several years. Other decisions handed down by courts across the country have upheld Congress's authority to enact this legisla… Continue Reading


12.10.10

Vermont Nets $3.3 M. More In Home Heating Funds, As Vermont’s Congressional Delegation Keeps The Heat On Congress For Further LIHEAP Funding

Vermont's Congressional Delegation - Senator Patrick Leahy (D), Senator Bernie Sanders (I) and Congressman Peter Welch (D) - Friday reported that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is releasing $3.3 million more in home heating assistance to Vermont. The Vermont lawmakers have been pushing for this funding and more, which they say Vermonters will need before the winter's through. The grant is part of a nationwide release of $2.68 billion in Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Prog… Continue Reading


12.10.10

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Reports Of A Settlement Between Dean Foods And Northeast Dairy Farmers

"This case has been a constructive development for the future of our dairy industry. Vermont dairy farmers, like dairy farmers across the country, are struggling, and we cannot allow collusion among larger dairy conglomerates to continue at the expense of our locally owned and operated dairy farms. These companies should be put on notice that there is a price to pay for anti-competitive practices. Reports of this settlement are welcome news but also a reminder that the Justice Department must… Continue Reading


12.10.10

Senator urges U.S. to end funds to Haiti government

PORT-AU-PRINCE (Reuters) - An influential U.S. senator on Friday urged President Barack Obama's administration to suspend direct aid to Haiti's government and visas for its top officials until it ensures a fair and democratic outcome to disputed national elections. Democratic Senator Patrick Leahy made the call as international pressure mounted on outgoing Haitian President Rene Preval's government and Haitian electoral authorities to review the contested results of November 28 elections that h… Continue Reading


12.10.10

Leahy Calls For Freeze Of Funds To Haiti’s Central Government And Of Travel Visas For The Government’s Leaders Who Are ‘Trying To Subvert The Will Of The People’

[(FRIDAY, Dec. 10) -- U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Friday said he has urged the Obama Administration to withhold funding to the central government of Haiti, and to suspend visas for travel to the United States by senior Haitian Government officials and their immediate family members, until necessary steps are taken to ensure a fair and democratic outcome to the elections held on November 28, 2010. Leahy chairs the Senate Appropriations Committee's Subcommittee on The State Department and F… Continue Reading


12.10.10

Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Judicial Nominations

I have been urging Republicans and Democrats in the Senate to come together and take action to begin to end the vacancy crisis that is threatening the administration of justice by our Federal courts. I asked only that Senators follow the Golden Rule. Regrettably that has not happened. Now 38 judicial nominees whose qualifications are well established are being delayed. They should be confirmed before we adjourn. Adherence to the Golden Rule, a simple step, would help us return to our Senate … Continue Reading


12.09.10

DOJ To Implement Provisions Of Leahy-Authored Patriot Act Reauthorization Proposal

(Thursday, Dec. 9, 2010) - In a letter sent Thursday to Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), the U.S. Department of Justice has indicated that it is implementing several key oversight and civil liberties provisions incorporated in legislation authored by Leahy to reauthorize expiring provisions of the USA PATRIOT Act. In March, Leahy wrote to Attorney General Eric Holder urging the Justice Department to implement oversight provisions and reporting requirements included in the USA… Continue Reading


12.09.10

Comments Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Senate’s Failure Again To End The Filibuster On Legislation To Repeal ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’

[On Thursday afternoon the U.S. Senate again failed to secure a supermajority vote needed to break a filibuster preventing a debate and vote on the Defense Authorization Bill, which includes provisions to repeal the controversial "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" (DADT) policy on the service of gays in the military. The cloture vote garnered 57 votes, with 60 needed for cloture. Below are the comments of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), a leading advocate for repealing the current policy.] The stage is e… Continue Reading

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