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

04.22.10

Leahy Praises Senate Confirmation Of U.S. Attorney, U.S. Marshal Nominees

The Senate Thursday afternoon made further progress in clearing a lingering backlog of nominations on the calendar, confirming five U.S. Attorney and five U.S. Marshal nominations, some of which have been pending before the full Senate for more than a month. "The Senate is beginning to make some process in clearing noncontroversial nominations," said Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). "I am grateful that Senate Republicans have released the holds that have prevented the … Continue Reading


04.22.10

Senate Unanimously Confirms Long-Pending Nomination To Second Circuit Court Of Appeals

The Senate Thursday unanimously confirmed the long-pending nomination of Denny Chin to fill a vacancy on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. Chin's nomination was unanimously reported by the Senate Judiciary Committee in December. Chin will be the only active Asian Pacific American judge on the federal circuit courts of appeals. He appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee in November. There remain 23 judicial nominations pending on the Executive Calendar. The nominations were report… Continue Reading


04.21.10

Senate Confirms Judicial Nominee For Third Circuit

The Senate Wednesday overwhelmingly voted to confirm another long-pending nomination to the federal judiciary, Judge Thomas Vanaskie to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. Vanaskie's nomination has been pending before the full Senate since December 3, more than four months. The final vote on confirmation was 77-20. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has been urging Senate Republicans to lift objections to considering noncontroversial nominations since last year. "I app… Continue Reading


04.21.10

Senate Confirms Top Justice Department Nominee

The Senate Wednesday afternoon confirmed Christopher Schroeder to lead the Office of Legal Policy at the Department of Justice, more than eight months after his nomination was first reported by the Senate Judiciary Committee without opposition. Schroeder's nomination was confirmed by a strong bipartisan vote of 71-25. Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has been urging the Senate to confirm Schroeder's nomination to be the Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Legal Polic… Continue Reading


04.21.10

With Leahy’s Support, Senate Ag Committee Votes Out Bipartisan Reforms On Risky Derivative Deals

The U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, in a much-anticipated vote, Wednesday approved The Wall Street Transparency and Accountability Act, bringing the strongest Wall Street reforms to date a big step closer to reality. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), the panel's most senior member, supports the bill - offered by Senator Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.), who chairs the committee -- which is expected to be merged with the financial reform bill sponsored by Senator Christopher D… Continue Reading


04.21.10

Comment Following A Bipartisan Meeting With President Obama About The Supreme Court

President Obama continues his practice of reaching across the aisle to select qualified judicial nominees, and his approach to making nominations to the Supreme Court is no different. I appreciate that he again invited the Republican Senate leader and the Ranking Member of the Judiciary Committee, as well as the Majority Leader and me, to the White House for this consultation meeting. This President has taken seriously the advice and consent role of the United States Senate in appointing judge… Continue Reading


04.21.10

Comment On Administration Views Letter On Patent Reform Amendment

The Department of Commerce yesterday sent a letter to Senator Patrick Leahy and Senator Jeff Sessions expressing its support for a compromise amendment released in March, stating that the administration "is eager to see patent reform enacted this congressional session." The letter is available online. "The proposed manager's amendment to the Patent Reform Act is a bipartisan agreement to enact meaningful reforms to our patent system. It has the support of the Obama administration, and as yeste… Continue Reading


04.20.10

Statement On National Crime Victims’ Rights Week

This past Sunday marked the start of National Crime Victims' Rights Week. Since 1981, people across the Nation have observed this week with candlelight vigils and public rallies to renew our commitment to crime victims and their families. It is vitally important that we recognize the needs of crime victims and their family members, and work together to promote victims' rights and services. My involvement with crime victims began more than three decades ago when I served as State's Attorney in… Continue Reading


04.20.10

Comment On U.S. Department Of Commerce Issues Report On Role Of Patent Reform In Supporting Innovation And Job Creation

The Department of Commerce Tuesday issued a report on the role of patent reform in creating jobs and energizing innovation. Leahy is a leading author of the Patent Reform Act, and of a proposed manager's amendment unveiled last month. The full text of the Commerce Department's report is available here. "It should come as no surprise that the report released by the Department of Commerce today concludes that patent reform legislation will accelerate the pace of economic growth and create jobs.… Continue Reading


04.20.10

Statement On The Legacy Of Justice John Paul Stevens

Justice John Paul Stevens' retirement from the Supreme Court will begin to draw to a close an extraordinary judicial career spanning four decades, including 35 years on the Nation's highest court. Justice Stevens and I both came to Washington in the wake of the Watergate scandal. President Ford was impressed by Justice Stevens' anticorruption record, including his prosecution of two Illinois Supreme Court Justices who were charged with accepting bribes. His confirmation to the Supreme Court w… Continue Reading


04.20.10

Statement On Equal Pay Day

Senator Leahy On Equal Pay Day Today is Equal Pay Day: After 16 months of work, professional women today will finally have earned what their male counterparts earned in just 12 months of work last year. It is shameful that gender discrimination still exists in our country, and I hope today will serve as an important reminder that we must redouble our efforts to fully close the wage gap. Forty-six years have passed since the Equal Pay Act was enacted, yet the disparity between women'… Continue Reading


04.20.10

Comment On The Passing Of Dr. Dorothy I. Height

"Marcelle and I join Americans across the nation in mourning the passing of an American heroine and true champion of civil rights and women's rights, Dr. Dorothy Irene Height. As President of the National Council of Negro Women, Dr. Height led the fight for civil rights and equality for women from the homes of hardworking Americans straight to the halls of Congress. During tumultuous times in our nation's history, she was a leading voice and tireless advocate for school desegregation, voting r… Continue Reading


04.20.10

Statement On FY 2011 Budget Request for Operations and Programs of the U.S. Agency for International Development

Dr. Shah, welcome to this subcommittee. We are here to discuss your budget request for fiscal year 2011. I - and I believe I speak for others here - sincerely appreciate that a person of your intellect and enthusiasm has taken on this job. That said, I do not envy you. USAID is an agency in urgent need of reform and it is a formidable task. I think every member of this subcommittee supports USAID's mission in one way or another, but many of us have become increasingly concerned with its per… Continue Reading


04.20.10

Senate Judiciary Committee Holds Hearing On Oversight Of Civil Rights Division

(Tuesday, April 20, 2010) - The Senate Judiciary Committee is this morning holding a hearing on oversight of the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice. The hearing is chaired by Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.). Assistant Attorney General Tom Perez, the head of the Civil Rights Division, testified. Member statements, testimony, and a live webcast are available online. The prepared statement of Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) follows. Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt… Continue Reading


04.19.10

Statement On The Presidential Memorandum On Respecting The Rights Of Hospital Patients

Last week, the country took another important step toward a more just and perfect union when President Obama issued a Presidential Memorandum on Respecting the Rights of Hospital Patients to Receive Visitors and to Designate Surrogate Decision Makers for Medical Emergencies. I applaud the President for this effort to ensure that every person enjoys the same right to have their loved ones with them in hospitals and to designate surrogate decision makers when they are hospitalized, often in their… Continue Reading


04.19.10

Senate Finally Set To Consider Several Long-Stalled Nominations

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Monday urged prompt confirmation of nominations pending before the full Senate, including 25 judicial nominations and 15 executive nominations favorably reported by the Senate Judiciary Committee. The Senate this week is expected to consider five nominations that have been stalled on the Senate's executive calendar for several months, including three nominations considered by the Senate Judiciary Committee. "In a dramatic departure fro… Continue Reading


04.19.10

Comment On Administration Support For The Juvenile Justice And Delinquency Prevention Reauthorization Act

The Justice Department on April 15 sent a letter to Senator Patrick Leahy in support of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Reauthorization Act. Leahy introduced the legislation in March 2009, and the Judiciary Committee favorably reported the bill in December. "The Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act is intended to keep children safe and out of trouble, and also to ensure that they have the opportunity to become productive adult members of society. In working hard o… Continue Reading


04.18.10

What Matters Most In A Nominee?

One of the most frequently asked questions after the announcement of a Supreme Court vacancy is about the attributes that should matter most to the president in choosing a nominee. With the coming retirement of Justice John Paul Stevens, it's difficult to think of any better model than Justice Stevens himself - a superb and influential jurist, a man of great decency, and the last justice from the "Greatest Generation" that carried the nation through the Second World War. The choice… Continue Reading


04.16.10

April 16, 2010 - Postcards From Home

Send Your Postcards From Home To Our TroopsSenator Leahy Announces Vermont National Guard YouTube Project Postcards From Home - Instructional Video This week Senator Leahy launched Postcards From Home, a YouTube video project dedicated to Vermont National Guard troops and Vermonters in the armed services who are currently serving in Afghanistan, Iraq, and other locations across the globe. Senator Leahy and his wife Marcelle created their own message, as did Major Ge… Continue Reading


04.16.10

Senate Judiciary Committee Holds Hearing For Ninth Circuit, District Court Nominees

The Senate Judiciary Committee Friday held a hearing to consider the nominations of Professor Goodwin Liu to be a judge for the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit; Magistrate Judge Kimberly Mueller to be a judge for the Eastern District of California; Richard Gergel to be a judge for the District of South Carolina; J. Michelle Childs to be a district judge for the District of South Carolina; and Catherine C. Eagles to be a district judge for the Middle District of North Carolina… Continue Reading

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