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


Guard Caucus Leaders Leahy And Bond Request $870 M. To Address Guard And Reserve Equipment Shortfalls

(FRIDAY, June 11) -- U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Kit Bond (R-Mo.), the co-chairs of the Senate National Guard Caucus, are requesting an additional $870 million to help the National Guard and Reserves address critical equipment shortfalls. The National Guard Caucus request was sent to Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii) and Vice Chairman Thad Cochran (R-Miss.). Bond and Leahy also are senior members of the Appropriations Committee and of its Defense Sub… Continue Reading


Comment On Elena Kagan’s Work For Justice Thurgood Marshall

"Elena Kagan clerked for one of the most revered Justices in American history, Justice Thurgood Marshall. It is unsurprising that her evaluation of cases as a law clerk were mindful of Justice Marshall's longstanding jurisprudence, and that her recommendations to him applied the lens through which he viewed cases and the law. It is surprising, however, to see these documents described by some as 'newly discovered,' since they have been publicly available since Justice Marshall left his documen… Continue Reading


Leahy, Schumer, Whitehouse Press For Accountability From Oil, Drilling Companies

Leahy Joins Oil Rig Victims' Families In Call For Accountability WASHINGTON - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), and Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) on Thursday joined with the families of many victims of the April 20 explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico to press for accountability from the oil and drilling companies responsible for the tragedy in the Gulf. Leahy, Schumer and Whitehouse held a press conference on Capitol Hill with the wid… Continue Reading


Leahy: Derivatives Reform Should Remain An Ingredient Of Wall Street Reform

[Following are the opening remarks of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), a Senate conferee on the House-Senate conference on the Wall Street reform bill. The first meeting of conferees was held today (Thursday).] C-SPAN: Leahy Joins Wall Street Reform Bill Conferees for First Meeting I want to congratulate Agriculture Chairwoman Blanche Lincoln and Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd for shepherding this significant piece of legislation through the United States Senate. G… Continue Reading


Statement On The Murkowski Resolution of Disapproval

Leahy Opposes Murkowski Resolution on Greenhouse Gases Mr. President, I rise today to speak in opposition to the proposed resolution from the Senator from Alaska. This resolution of disapproval reminds me of a skills competition for young people, promoted by the National Football League, called "Punt, Pass, and Kick." In fact, this resolution is an engraved invitation for the Senate to make a big league handoff of a basketful of illness, economic stalemate and environmental pollution, to o… Continue Reading


FTC Chairman To Leahy: Antitrust Laws Shouldn’t Prohibit Oil Companies From Assisting In Gulf Spill

The Chairman of the Federal Trade Commission has told Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) that federal antitrust laws should not prohibit oil companies from discussing ways to address the ongoing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. In a letter sent June 8, Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Chairman Jon Leibowitz said, "Although we must always be watchful when competitors collaborate, industry efforts to work with Federal officials and provide expertise to combat this ecological disaster are unlikely to ra… Continue Reading


Leahy Introduces Bill To Strengthen Penalties For Environmental Crimes

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Wednesday introduced legislation to hold accountable oil and other companies responsible for environmental crimes. The Environmental Crimes Enforcement Act will also protect victims of environmental crime by mandating restitution for criminal violations of the Clean Water Act. The legislation is aimed at deterring environmental crime and protecting and compensating victims of environmental crime. The Environmental Crimes Enforcement Act (ECEA) will deter schemes … Continue Reading


Plymouth Elementary School

On June 9, 2010 Senator Leahy conducted an online chat with the 13 students of Plymouth Elementary School. Plymouth Elementary School closed at the end of the school year on June 17, 2101. As part of the school's closing activities Senator Leahy used Skype to speak with the students ranging in grades kindergarten through six grade about their hometown of Plymouth, Senator Leahy's life as a U.S. Senator and his childhood. A sample of the questions asked during the chat follows. What schools and … Continue Reading


Leahy and Sanders Back New Push To Restore Medicaid Relief To Jobs Bill That Senate Will Debate This Week

- U.S. Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) announced Tuesday that a $24 billion fund to assist states with their Medicaid populations will be included in a jobs bill package now pending action by the full Senate. The provision backed by Sanders and Leahy would extend for six additional months an enhanced federal funding match to states that was enacted as part of last year's American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). Vermont estimates that extending this Medicaid relief … Continue Reading


Leahy Introduces Survivors Equality Act To Allow Families Of Oil Rig Victims To Seek Justice In Court

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday introduced legislation to permit families of victims killed on the high seas to seek non-economic damages in the wake of tragedies like that of the explosion on British Petroleum's Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico. The Death on the High Seas Act is one of few exclusive federal remedies for families of those killed in international waters, yet the law does not permit families to recover for losses such as the loss of care or companionship. Ho… Continue Reading


Judiciary Committee Hears Testimony About Risky Business Of Big Oil

(Tuesday, June 8, 2010) - The Senate Judiciary Committee this morning is holding a hearing on "The Risky Business of Big Oil: Have Recent Court Decisions and Liability Caps Encouraged Irresponsible Corporate Behavior" Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) delivered the following opening statement. Witness testimony and a live webcast are available online. Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman, Senate Judiciary Committee,Hearing On "The Risky Business Of Big Oil: Have Rec… Continue Reading


Senate Confirms Three District Court Judges

The Senate Monday night confirmed three nominations to fill vacancies on federal district courts across the country. The votes marked the first Senate action on pending judicial nominations in nearly a month. The last confirmation vote was held on May 11. The Senate unanimously confirmed district court nominees Audrey Fleissig to the federal district court for eastern district of Missouri; Lucy Koh to the federal district court for the northern district of California; and Jane Magnus-Stinson … Continue Reading


Leahy On Kagan Nomination: Senators Should Reject The Ideological Litmus Test

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) delivered brief remarks on the Senate Floor today regarding the nomination of Elena Kagan to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. The full text of his statement follows. Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.),Chairman, Senate Judiciary CommitteeOn The Nomination Of Elena Kagan To The Supreme CourtJune 7, 2010 Leahy Urges Senators To "Reject The Ideological Litmus Test" On Kagan Nomina… Continue Reading


Health Care Law Improves Prescription Drug Coverage

BURLINGTON, Vt., - U.S. Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) announced today that almost 9,000 Vermont seniors will receive a one-time $250 rebate check beginning this week as the new federal health care law begins to close a gap in Medicare coverage for prescription medicine. The first checks will be mailed June 10 for people whose out-of-pocket expenses already total more than $940 for the year, the senators said during a joint press conference at the Champlain Senior Center… Continue Reading


Leahy On The Borderline In Immigration Debate

On a map, the nation's borders are innocuous lines of ink. But for U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., they're an increasingly precarious tightrope. As chairman of his chamber's Judiciary Committee, he faces angry Arizonans who want the federal government to back their headline-grabbing efforts to bar illegal immigrants. But as the senior member of Vermont's congressional delegation, he's hearing from dairy farmers desperate to retain an estimated 1,500 hired hands from Mexico, and from truck… Continue Reading


Comment On Production Of Documents By The National Archives Related To Solicitor General Elena Kagan’s Nomination To The Supreme Court Of The United States

"With this initial delivery of documents, the Judiciary Committee has received more information from the administration than was made available at this point in the confirmation process for either the Roberts or Alito nominations. I commend the staff at the Clinton Presidential Library and the National Archives for their prompt work in responding so thoroughly to the Committee's request. "The Obama administration and the Archives are continuing to work to make available an unprecedented volum… Continue Reading


Leahy: DHS Agrees To Close Morses Line Border Crossing

U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy announced Thursday that Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has agreed with his request to close the border crossing at Morses Line. The closure process will involve a public comment period, extensive consultations with stakeholders, and further assessments on safety and traffic patterns -- steps that Secretary Napolitano estimates will likely take a year to complete. In a letter to Napolitano after a DHS public meeting on May 23 requested by Leahy, the Verm… Continue Reading


Leahy Presses Senate Leaders To Schedule Votes On Pending Judicial Nominations

The Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), urging them to schedule votes on pending judicial nominations. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has pressed for prompt Senate consideration of the more than two dozen judicial nominations that have been reported by the Judiciary Committee but not yet scheduled for a final vote. Despite efforts from Senate Democrats to secure time… Continue Reading


Leahy: $54.7 M. Army Contract For Continuation Of Work On Goodrich-Vergennes’ Helicopter Diagnostics Unit Will Save Lives and Tax Dollars

VERGENNES, Vt. - Senator Patrick Leahy says a new $54,745,988 U.S. Army contract with Goodrich for additional units of the company's groundbreaking helicopter maintenance diagnostic system, produced by the firm's facility here, shows the advanced system has quickly taken its place as a key maintenance feature of U.S. military helicopter programs. Leahy just two months ago joined Goodrich employees here to mark shipment of the 2000th system, at that point achieving more than $100 million in hel… Continue Reading


Comment On The Supreme Court’s Opinion In Samantar v. Yousuf

[The Supreme Court today ruled that the Foreign Sovereign Immunity Act does not provide immunity to foreigners accused of torture. Solicitor General Elena Kagan filed a "friend of the Court" brief urging the Court to affirm the decision of the Fourth Circuit. The Supreme Court ruled unanimously to affirm the Fourth Circuit's decision that the Foreign Sovereign Immunity Act does not grant individual immunity. Senator Patrick Leahy was the lead Democratic sponsor of the Torture Victim Protection… Continue Reading

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