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Press Releases

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

06.16.09

Leahy Joins Effort To Fix REAL ID Law

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is again part of an effort to fix problems in the REAL ID Act of 2005 that have led many states to balk at participating in what critics say is a thinly disguised national ID program built around a national database that would be vulnerable to identity theft. Leahy is a leading cosponsor of a new bipartisan bill introduced in the Senate on June 15 by Senator Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii). Senator George Voinovich (R-Ohio) is the chief Republican cosponsor. The ne… Continue Reading


06.16.09

Leahy Announces $6.5 Million In New First-Responder Grants To Vermont

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday announced $6.52 million in new first-responder grants to Vermont. Leahy in 2001 authored the charter for the State Homeland Security Program (SHSP), which supports state and local law enforcement efforts to prevent, identify and respond to homeland security threats. Leahy also announced that Vermont will receive more than $125,000 in Citizen Corp Program grants. The grants to local and state first responder units support the implementation of homela… Continue Reading


06.16.09

Remarks On The Supreme Court And The Nomination Of Judge Sonia Sotomayor UDC David A. Clarke School of Law Annual Rauh Lecture

Remarks at the UDC David A. Clarke School of Law Annual Rauh Lecture - Part 1 Part 1 Remarks at the UDC David A. Clarke School of Law Annual Rauh Lecture - Part 2 Part 2 On Tuesday morning, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman delivered the Rauh Lecture at the University of the District of Columbia David A. Clarke School of Law. His remarks, as prepared, follow. It is an honor to have been invited by my friend Wade Henderson, the longtime President of the Leader… Continue Reading


06.16.09

StatementOn THe Death Of Dale R. Long Of The Bennington Rescue Squad

Marcelle and I were deeply saddened by the news of this tragic accident that claimed the life of veteran EMT specialist Dale R. Long. We extend our deepest condolences to his family, to the Bennington Rescue Squad and to the entire Vermont EMT community. As a Vermonter I have always thought that members of our first-responder community represent the best of our state's tradition of service to others. Dale Long was a solid example of that tradition. He was Bennington Rescue Squad's 2008 EMT o… Continue Reading


06.16.09

Statement Of Thanks To Bermuda

Mr. LEAHY. Madam President, last Thursday Bermuda welcomed to freedom four men who had been wrongly detained at Guantanamo Bay for more than 7 years. The men are ethnic Uighurs--a minority group from western China that has long suffered discrimination and oppression by China's Government. Their release is welcome news--our own Federal courts had cleared them for release, as did both the Bush and Obama administrations. Bermudian Prime Minister Dr. Ewart Brown and the Bermudian people have done a … Continue Reading


06.15.09

Burlington Waterfront Improvements Prepare Waterfront For Quad Celebration

BURLINGTON, Vt. - U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Burlington Mayor Bob Kiss and members of Burlington's business community marked the completion of new public restrooms, a visitor center, additional parking for tour buses and traffic flow improvements on Burlington's Waterfront during a Monday morning news conference outside the new visitor center adjacent to the Pease parking lot. The $2.7 million in federal grants used to fund construction were secured by Leahy in the 2005 federal tran… Continue Reading


06.11.09

Fight Drug Crimes And Ensure Justice, Accountability

The need for international cooperation to crack down on drug cartels is beyond question. Just a few weeks ago, gunmen killed Mexico Chief of Police Edgar Eusebio Millán Gómez in his home. In a single week, more than 100 people, including about 20 police officers, were killed in drug-related violence. Some of those suspected of having a hand in these crimes are police officers themselves, moonlighting for the cartels. On May 22, the U.S. Senate approved $450 million for the f… Continue Reading


06.11.09

Statement On the Passage of S. 982 The “Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act”

I am pleased the Senate is moving once again to pass legislation to regulate tobacco products in the United States. Senator Kennedy's lifetime efforts to improve the public's health are exemplified in his fight to pass the "Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act." Despite many setbacks, Senator Kennedy has worked tirelessly to pass this legislation and I am proud to join him again as a cosponsor of this bill. This legislation is long overdue and I look forward to… Continue Reading


06.10.09

Comment On The Appointment Of Miriam Nisbet As The First Director Of The Office Of Government Information Services

"I applaud President Obama and Acting Archivist of the United States Adrienne Thomas for appointing Miriam Nisbet as the first Director of the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) within the National Archives and Records Administration. As one of the key FOIA reforms enacted under the Leahy-Cornyn OPEN Government Act of 2007, OGIS will provide essential policy guidance and mediation services for the government's Freedom of Information Act activities. Ms. Nisbet brings a weal… Continue Reading


06.10.09

Remarks At The World Copyright Summit “New Frontiers For Creators In The Marketplace”

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) delivered the following remarks at the World Copyright Summit on Wednesday morning in Washington, D.C. As Prepared Thank you. I always appreciate the opportunity to be in such talented company. I would like to thank the President of CISAC, Robin Gibb, and the Chairman of the Board, Brett Cottle, for inviting me here today. I am an avid fan. I see intellectual property rights as an important way to ensure that inventors and cr… Continue Reading


06.10.09

Leahy Panel Hears Testimony From Director Of Vermont Network Against Domestic And Sexual Violence

A Senate panel chaired by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) heard testimony this morning from Karen Tronsgard-Scott, the Director of the Vermont Network Against Domestic Violence, at a hearing in Washington, D.C. Tronsgard-Scott and others testified about how the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) has been used to help combat domestic violence and other violent crimes against women. The hearing focused on "The Continued Importance of the Violence Against Women Act." The Violence Against Wome… Continue Reading


06.10.09

Vermont Congressional Delegation Announces Nine Vermont Communities Will Share $3.9 Million In Stimulus Funds For New Public Transit Vehicles

- Vermont's Congressional Delegation -- Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Representative Peter Welch (D-Vt.) - Wednesday announced that nine Vermont public transit providers will share $3.9 million in economic recovery funds for new vehicles. The list was formally approved Wednesday by the U.S. Federal Transit Administration. The Vermont Agency of Transportation will use the $3.9 million to purchase 33 buses and vans for nine local transit providers around… Continue Reading


06.09.09

Senate Judiciary Committee Subcommittee Holds Hearing To Examine ‘Prolonged Detention’

(Tuesday, June 9, 2009) - A Senate Judiciary Committee panel Tuesday morning will consider the consequences of 'prolonged detention' of detainees held in U.S. custody. The Subcommittee on the Constitution, chaired by Senator Russ Feingold (D-Wis.), will hear testimony from a panel of six witnesses. Member statements, witness testimony, and a live webcast of the hearing are available online. Full Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) issued the following statement at the hearing. … Continue Reading


06.09.09

Sotomayor Confirmation Hearing To Begin July 13

Sen. Leahy Sets Time For Sotomayor Hearing WASHINGTON - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday announced that hearings to consider the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to be an Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court will begin on July 13. In a statement on the Senate floor, Leahy said, "This is a schedule that tracks the process the Senate followed by bipartisan agreement in considering President Bush's nomination of John Roberts to the Supreme Cour… Continue Reading


06.09.09

Leahy Announces Grant For Vermont Network Against Domestic And Sexual Violence

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Tuesday that the Vermont Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence will receive a federal grant of more than $156,000 from the U.S. Department of Justice. The funds were provided in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which was signed into law earlier this year. The grant was awarded by the Justice Department's Office of Violence Against Women. The funding will provide direct support and resources to the Network to rai… Continue Reading


06.08.09

Vermont Is Getting A New Passport Office

It happens all the time in Vermont: You've booked an overseas flight and days before your departure you discover your passport has expired. The only way to make sure you get your passport renewed in time is to drive to Boston, which has the nearest Passport Agency, offering a greater range of passport services to U.S. citizens than can local clerks and post offices are able to offer. Passport help and services in Vermont soon will be closer to home. Senator Patrick Leahy announced th… Continue Reading


06.08.09

Attorney General To Testify Before Senate Judiciary Committee

(Monday, June 8, 2009) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Monday announced that the Committee will hold its first Department of Justice oversight hearing of the 111th Congress on June 17. Attorney General Eric Holder will testify. The Senate Judiciary Committee holds periodic oversight hearings of the Department of Justice. The oversight hearing will be held on Wednesday, June 17, 2009, at 10:00 a.m., in room 226 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building. The hear… Continue Reading


06.05.09

Vermont Nets More Than $5 M. In Forest Upgrades In Latest Installment Of Economic Recovery Funds

Vermont's Green Mountain National Forest and its surrounding communities will benefit from the next wave of economic recovery act funds coming to the state. Vermont's Congressional Delegation - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Congressman Peter Welch (D-Vt.) - said the U.S. Forest Service will invest $5.295 million in economic stimulus funds on projects that range from road upgrades to waterway improvements that will help conserve endangered species such a… Continue Reading


06.04.09

Statement On The Situation In Sri Lanka

Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, the recent defeat of Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers, otherwise known as the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, or LTTE, is a very welcome development. Led by a reclusive, cult-like figure who apparently saw no evil in forcibly recruiting and brainwashing young children to become suicide bombers, the LTTE long ago forfeited any legitimate claim to representing the interests of the Tamil population. This resounding victory offers the possibility--after 30 long years of co… Continue Reading


06.04.09

Senate Judiciary Committee Reports First Judicial Nominations

(Thursday, June 4, 2009) - The Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday reported the first judicial nominations of the 111th Congress. Judge David Hamilton is a nominee to fill a vacancy on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, and Judge Andre Davis is a nominee to fill a vacancy on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. The Committee also reported one executive nomination to the Senate for consideration. Thomas Perez is nominated to be Assistant Attorney General for t… Continue Reading

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