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Press Releases

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


Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2010 September 30, 2010

"I am pleased to cosponsor Senator Menendez's Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act. In the opening days of this Congress, I expressed my steadfast commitment to reform of our nation's broken immigration system. The problems we face in our immigration laws are very real today, and action is long overdue. "The legislation Senator Menendez and I have introduced is an important starting point for this debate. It protects the rights and opportunities of American workers, while ensuring that Ameri… Continue Reading


Senate Passes Leahy-Collins Bill To Make Veterans Groups Eligible To Receive Surplus Federal Property

(Thursday, Sept. 30, 2010) - The U.S. Senate on Wednesday unanimously passed a bill sponsored by Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) that would make veterans groups eligible to receive surplus property donations from the federal government. The Senate's action clears the way for the House of Representatives to consider the Formerly Owned Resources for Veterans to Express Thanks for Service Act (FOR VETS Act). The bill is cosponsored by Senator Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii). The… Continue Reading


Leahy: 3 Vermont Communities Receive Grants For Police Hiring

(Thursday, Sept. 30) - Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Thursday that three Vermont communities have been awarded grants through the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Hiring Program. Law enforcement agencies in Orange County, Castleton, and Barre will receive grants to hire or re-hire law enforcement officers. "The federal, state and local law enforcement partnership is on display every day in Vermont," said Leahy. "Vermont law enforcement agencies have benefited from COPS grant… Continue Reading


Senate Recesses Without Confirming Judicial Nominees

(Thursday, Sept. 30, 2010) - The Senate Wednesday night recessed until after the November elections without confirming any of the 23 judicial nominations pending on the Executive Calendar. One nomination, Fourth Circuit nominee Albert Diaz, was unanimously reported by the Judiciary Committee more than eight months ago, but Senate Republicans have yet to give consent to schedule a vote on his nomination. Seventeen of the 23 judicial nominations pending on the calendar were reported by the Commi… Continue Reading


Leahy-Authored Bill To Improve Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act Set To Become Law

(Wednesday, Sept. 29, 2010) - Legislation authored by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to make improvements to the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA) is set to become law, following a vote by the House of Representatives this evening. The bill was passed unanimously by the Senate in May, and will now be sent to the President to be signed into law. The Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act Improvements Act will address certain parts of the LEOSA certification process, making it more flexibl… Continue Reading


Leahy: $200,000 Grant Will Continue Key Outreach Efforts For Vermont’s Runaway and Homeless Youths

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Congress's leading champion of the Runaway and Homeless Youth Act, reports that a new $200,000 federal grant will enable the Vermont Coalition of Runaway and Homeless Youth Programs (VCRHYP) to continue to help disconnected teens stay safe and healthy. Each of Vermont's 12 programs operate within its own community-based, nonprofit youth and family service organization. The Washington County Youth Service Bureau/Boys & Girls Club serves as the administrative ag… Continue Reading


Governor Douglas and Congressional Delegation Announce Northern Border Regional Commission Awards

Montpelier, Vt. - Two Vermont projects will receive a total of $375,000 in federal funds to support jobs and economic development in the Northeast Kingdom through the Northern Border Regional Commission (NRBC). Governor Jim Douglas joined Senator Patrick Leahy, Senator Bernie Sanders and Representative Peter Welch in announcing $234,000 has been awarded for the Northern Vermont Fiber Optic Connection project and $141,150 has been awarded to the Northern Forest Canoe Trail. Vermont's federal d… Continue Reading


Leahy Proposes Bill To Allow Retired Justices To Sit On Court By Designation

(Wednesday, Sept. 29, 2010) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Wednesday introduced legislation to permit retired Supreme Court justices to sit on the Court by designation in cases where an active justice has recused. Such legislation was first suggested to Leahy by Justice John Paul Stevens, in a meeting earlier this year with Leahy, before Stevens announced his retirement plans. Under the proposed bill, the active justices of the Supreme Court would be permitted to v… Continue Reading


Delegation Welcomes Release of Funds for ‘Vermonter’ High-Speed Rail Project

, Sept. 29 - Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) today welcomed the release of $50 million in federal stimulus funds for the "Vermonter" rail line from St. Albans to Vernon, Vt. The high-speed rail project will be the second in the nation to break ground using funds that Congress approved in last year's economic recovery act. (Maine's "Downeaster" line was first.) The grant was awarded by the U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Railroad A… Continue Reading


Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy on Assistance for Afghanistan

MR. LEAHY. Mr. President, at a time when many Americans are increasingly concerned with the situation in Afghanistan, I was interested in an investigative report on U.S. aid for Afghanistan in the August 2, 2010, issue of the Christian Science Monitor weekly magazine. The report describes several aspects of the U.S. Agency for International Development's approach to development in that country, and I want to take a minute to clarify what may be a misconception about the Congress' expectations.… Continue Reading


Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy on the Persecution of the Baha'is in Iran

Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, I want to take a moment to call the Senate's attention to members of the Baha'i faith who have and continue to suffer severe persecution by the Iranian Government. Senators should be aware that seven prominent Iranian Baha'i leaders are currently in prison, facing sentences of up to 10 years, charged with espionage, establishing an illegal administration, and promoting propaganda against the Islamic order. These spurious charges are only the latest example of the m… Continue Reading


Leahy Introduces Bill To Address Supreme Court’s Skilling Decision

(Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2010) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) introduced legislation Tuesday to close the gap created by the Supreme Court's decision earlier this year in Skilling v. United States. The legislation, called the Honest Services Restoration Act, will restore critical tools used by investigators and prosecutors to combat public corruption and corporate fraud, which the Court eliminated in the Skilling decision. The Honest Services Restoration Act expands the… Continue Reading


Leahy, Gillibrand Offer Bill To Give Dairy Workers Access To Visa Program

(TUESDAY, Sept. 28) - Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) Tuesday introduced the H-2A Improvement Act, legislation to ensure that dairy farmers in Vermont, New York and other dairy states can use a visa program long used by other sectors of the agriculture industry to hire foreign workers. Senator Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) is also a cosponsor of the bill. The U.S. Department of Labor struck a blow to the dairy industry earlier this year when it issued rules that conti… Continue Reading


Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing Looks At Scope Of Skilling Decision

(Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2010) - The Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing today led by Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) examining the scope of this year's Supreme Court decision in Skilling v. United States. The decision left gaps in a key anti-fraud and anti-corruption law. The hearing is the latest in a series Leahy has organized in recent years to explore the impact of important Supreme Court decisions. The Court's decision in June vacated the conviction of former Enron executive Jeffrey Ski… Continue Reading


Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Bringing Jobs Back To America

Mr. President, I strongly support the Creating American Jobs and Ending Offshoring Act. These clearly justified reforms will close wasteful tax loopholes for firms that move jobs overseas and provide real incentives for firms to bring jobs back to the United States. I am proud to join Senators Dick Durbin, Harry Reid, Byron Dorgan, Barbara Boxer, Chuck Schumer, Sherrod Brown, and Sheldon Whitehouse in cosponsoring this bill. For the past two decades our country has witnessed a disturbing tre… Continue Reading


President Signs Long-Stalled Small Business Jobs Bill

President Obama Monday signed into law a small business jobs bill that will boost commercial lending and provide tax relief to small businesses in Vermont and nationwide. The Small Business Job Creation Act modernizes the application process for U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) lending programs; targets tax relief to America's 27 million small businesses; and creates a $30 billion lending fund for healthy Main Street banks to boost capital access to small firms needing an injection of … Continue Reading


Leahy To Introduce Reauthorization Of Landmark Justice For All Act

(Monday, Sept. 27, 2010) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) will introduce legislation today to reauthorize the historic Justice for All Act, which was first enacted in 2004. Leahy was the leading Democratic Senate sponsor of the law, which resulted from more than four years of bipartisan negotiations. The Justice for All Act made modest but rare reforms in the way the death penalty is used in the criminal justice system. It also improved support services for crime victims, and provided importa… Continue Reading


Vermont Delegation Announces Recovery Act Funding For Rehabilitation Work At Rutland Free Library

Senator Patrick Leahy (D), Senator Bernie Sanders (I) and Congressman Peter Welch (D) ) report that U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack Friday made it official that the Rutland Free Library will receive $663,000 in federal support for repair of the library's roof. The funding -- a $200,000 grant and $463,000 loan -- comes through the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Community Facilities Program as part of the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, enacted last year to promote economic re… Continue Reading


Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On House Passage Of The “Freedom of Information Act Amendments To The Securities And Exchange Act, Investment Company Act And Investment Advisers Act Of 2010”

"I commend the House of Representatives for promptly following the Senate's action, and passing legislation to repeal exemptions to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) for the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that were enacted in the Wall Street reform bill. This new law will ensure that the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) remains an effective tool to provide public access to information about the stability of our financial markets. "The Freedom of Information Act has long recogni… Continue Reading


Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy Commemorating The Six-Month Milestone Of The Affordable Health Care Act

For each of us, our health is among the things we care the most about. Certainly one of the most common requests any of us regularly make in prayer is for good health. And of course it is not only our own health we worry about; we also want good health and proper medical insurance for our children, our parents, our siblings - for all those who are important to us. Medical knowledge and technology have advanced tremendously during the past two and a half centuries of American life, and the pac… Continue Reading

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