Press Room

Press Releases

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


Statement On Wall Street Reform Legislation

Mr. President, I strongly support the reform bill before us, S.3217, the Restoring American Financial Stability Act of 2010. I commend Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd and Majority Leader Harry Reid for shepherding this significant piece of legislation through the Senate. Getting to this point was no small feat given the near-unanimous opposition to Wall Street reform that this effort has encountered from the other side of the aisle. But Senators Dodd and Reid persevered because t… Continue Reading


Leahy Pushes For Public Access To Oil Spill Information

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Thursday sent a letter to President Barack Obama urging him to press federal executive agencies to make publicly available information related to the ongoing oil spill and growing environmental crisis in the Gulf of Mexico. Leahy is a longtime leader Congress in promoting government transparency, and in strengthening the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), the nation's premier open government law. "I write to urge you to take immediate steps to increase public acc… Continue Reading


Leahy Joins Franken, Others To Introduce Student Non-Discrimination Act

Senator Patrick Leahy on Thursday joined Senator Al Franken (D-Minn.) and 21 other senators to introduce the Student Non-Discrimination Act to protect lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) students from harassment, bullying, and violence at school. "The Student Non-Discrimination Act will ensure that under federal law, all public school children are protected equally from discrimination. Children deserve a safe environment where they can learn the skills and knowledge necessary to be go… Continue Reading


Director Of Vermont Immigration And Asylum Advocates Testifies Before Leahy-Chaired Panel

(Wednesday, May 19, 2010) - Vermont Patrick Giantonio, the Executive Director of Vermont Immigration and Asylum Advocates testified Wednesday morning before a panel chaired by Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy. Leahy is the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which has jurisdiction over immigration and refugee related issues. Vermont Immigration and Asylum Advocates provides legal services to immigrants and asylum seekers. Wednesday's hearing, "Renewing America's commitment to the Refugee Co… Continue Reading


Leahy, Sessions Request Kagan Documents From Clinton Library

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Ranking Member Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) on Tuesday sent a letter to the William J. Clinton Presidential Library and Museum, requesting documents related to the nomination of Solicitor General Elena Kagan to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. On Tuesday, Solicitor General Kagan returned the responses to the bipartisan Committee questionnaire, which requested information in the possession of the nominee. … Continue Reading


Green Mountain Valley School

On May 19, 2010, Senator Leahy conducted an online chat with 19 students from Green Mountain Valley School in Waitsfield, Vermont. Students used Skype to ask Senator Leahy questions about the dairy industry in Vermont and Senator Leahy's efforts to assist dairy farmers. They also asked a variety of questions about Senator Leahy's life as a United States Senator, his personal interests and his thoughts on Elena Kagan's nomination for Supreme Court Justice. Senator Leahy chats via video with st… Continue Reading


Kagan Confirmation Hearing To Begin June 28

Senator Leahy Sets Date For Kagan Confirmation Hearing To Begin June 28 WASHINGTON - At a hearing Wednesday morning, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced that proceedings to consider the nomination of Solicitor General Elena Kagan to be an Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court will begin on June 28. "This is a reasonable schedule that is in line with past practice," said Leahy. "Last year, we proceeded with the hearing on the nomination of Justice Soto… Continue Reading


Comment On The Questionnaire For Solicitor General Elena Kagan To Be Associate Justice Of The Supreme Court

"Solicitor General Kagan has promptly returned the Committee's bipartisan questionnaire. She is completing her meetings with each Senator on the Judiciary Committee soon, although some Republican members have asked that their meetings take place next week. The White House has already requested that the Clinton Library expedite requests for materials about her work in the Clinton administration. These materials, along with the record we compiled last year in connection with her nomination to b… Continue Reading


The Way Forward On Anti-Personnel Landmines

Way Forward On Anti-Personnel Landmines Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, earlier today I, along with 67 other Senators, sent a letter to President Obama on an issue that has concerned the Congress since the late 1980s. Our letter, signed by more than two-thirds of the Senate, commends the President for conducting a comprehensive review of the U.S. Government's policy on antipersonnel mines. That review has been underway for some time, and I expect it will be completed later this summer. It has i… Continue Reading


Comment On The Supreme Court’s Decision In U.S. v. Comstock

[In a 7-2 decision released today by the U.S. Supreme Court in U.S. v. Comstock, the Court upheld a provision of the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act which allowed for the civil commitment of a mentally ill federal prisoner who is also a convicted sex offender, beyond the date the convicted offender would have otherwise been released. In 2006, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), then the Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, played a leading role in the Senate's efforts to ena… Continue Reading


Leahy, Sanders And Welch Urge Vermont Broadband Infrastructure Funding Under Next Federal Stimulus Bill Round

The members of Vermont's Congressional Delegation -- U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D), U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I) and U.S. Rep. Peter Welch (D) -- are urging the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) to invest in Vermont's broadband infrastructure. The lawmakers wrote to the agencies this week in support of the more than $219 million in broadband infrastructure applications submitted by Vermont companies and nonprofit organizations seeking Vermont's share … Continue Reading


Senate Unanimously Passes Leahy-Authored Bill To Improve Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act

The Senate Thursday night unanimously passed legislation authored by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to improve the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA). Leahy was a lead author of LEOSA, which permits active and qualified retired law enforcement officers to carry concealed firearms across state lines. The Act was originally signed into law in 2004. Leahy introduced the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act Improvements Act in May 2009. He steered the bipartisan legislation through the Se… Continue Reading


Judiciary Committee Advances Liu Nomination To Senate Floor

(Thursday, May 13, 2010) - The Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday voted to advance the nomination of Goodwin Liu to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to the full Senate. The Committee also advanced Second Circuit nominee Ray Lohier, and District of Delaware nominee Leonard Stark, as well as four U.S. Marshal nominees and a U.S. Attorney nominee. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), the chairman of the Committee, made the following remarks the executive business meeting.] Statement Of Senator Pa… Continue Reading


Leahy, Sessions Release Kagan Questionnaire

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Ranking Member Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) Thursday released the bipartisan questionnaire the Senate Judiciary Committee has asked Solicitor General Elena Kagan to complete in connection with her nomination to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. Responses to the Committee questionnaire will be made available online once received. Print copies will be made available upon request. A PDF of the questionnair… Continue Reading


Remarks On Receiving The Hubert H. Humphrey Award Of The Leadership Conference On Civil Rights

[On Wednesday, May 12, 2010, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) was recognized at the Hubert H. Humphrey Civil and Human Rights Award Dinner, sponsored by the leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights. The event is the year's largest gathering of the civil and human rights community. Leahy was awarded the 2010 Hubert H. Humphrey Civil and Human Rights Award in recognition of his long record of advocacy for social and economic justice. Previous recipients of the award include the late Senator… Continue Reading


Leahy, Sessions Ask Attorney General For Information On Hoax Calls To Military Families

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Ranking Member Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) Wednesday sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder, asking for information about the Justice Department's investigation into hoax phone calls to families of members of the military serving overseas. The hoax phone calls were reported as early as 1991, and have been placed in Vermont, Alabama, and elsewhere across the country. Federal officials have opened an investigation into hoax phone ca… Continue Reading


Comments Following A Meeting With Solicitor General Elena Kagan

Leahy Meets With U.S. Supreme Court Nominee Elena Kagan Solicitor General Kagan and I have just finished our meeting. I am impressed with her knowledge and legal background, as I was when the President nominated her to serve as Solicitor General of the United States, the country's top lawyer at the Supreme Court. Unlike the last time she was nominated to a judgeship, this time, I could assure her, and can assure you, that she will receive a hearing. I will do my best to make sure that i… Continue Reading


Leahy-Authored Extension Of Satellite TV Licenses Set To Become Law

Legislation authored by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to reauthorize satellite television licenses and to modernize satellite television services is headed to the President's desk for signature, following a vote this morning in the House of Representatives. Leahy has been working for months with leaders in the Senate and House to reauthorize several satellite television licenses which are set to expire on May 31. "This legislation modernizes and extends important statutory copyright licenses t… Continue Reading


Senate Passes Leahy-Authored Resolution Commemorating National Peace Officers Memorial Day

The Senate Tuesday night adopted a resolution authored by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to commemorate the service of law enforcement officers across the country and honor those who lost their lives in the line of duty in the last year. This week, law enforcement officers from across the country will come to Washington, D.C. to celebrate Police Week. The Leahy-authored resolution recognizes May 15, 2010, as National Peace Officers Memorial Day. Leahy has introduced resolutions commemorating N… Continue Reading


Senate Confirms Two District Court Judges

The Senate Tuesday afternoon confirmed two nominations to fill vacancies on federal district court. The Senate confirmed Timothy Black to a seat in the Southern District of Ohio, and Jon E. DeGuilio to a seat in the Northern District of Indiana. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has been pressing for floor time to consider the more than 20 judicial nominations pending before the full Senate. Sixteen of the 22 judicial nominations still pending on the Senate's executiv… Continue Reading

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