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Press Releases

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


Comment On GAO Report On Economic Effects Of Counterfeit And Pirated Goods

"The GAO report highlighted once again the link between strong intellectual property protection and economic growth. While the report noted that the 'illicit nature of counterfeiting and piracy makes estimating the economic impact of IP infringements extremely difficult,' there is no doubt that, as the GAO found, intellectual property theft hurts U.S. industry through lost sales, lost brand value, and reduced incentives to innovate. I will continue to work with the new Intellectual Property En… Continue Reading


Celebrating The Birth of Copyright

It was 300 years ago this week that the British Parliament enacted the Statute of Anne, the original predecessor of modern day copyright law. Today these copyright laws are a cornerstone of the American economy. This milestone is a fitting time to reflect on the vitality of our copyright laws and to renew our commitment to strong intellectual property enforcement that ensures copyrighted works have the protections that allow them to contribute so much to our economy and culture. The… Continue Reading


Comment On Bipartisan White House Meeting To Discuss Supreme Court Vacancy

"As he prepares to make his selection of a nominee to succeed Justice Stevens, President Obama is continuing his practice of reaching out to both sides of the aisle concerning judicial nominations. I am looking forward to this meeting, and to consulting with the President, and with the Majority Leader, the Republican Leader, and Senator Sessions. This is an important step in the process of confirming the next Supreme Court Justice." # # # # #… Continue Reading


Comment On Judicial Nominations

We are here to talk about the expanding backlog of pending nominations. The pattern of obstruction and delay in the Senate's consideration of these nominations - particularly judicial nominations - is unprecedented. Twenty-two nominations - 22 highly qualified nominees - are languishing on the Senate floor because we are unable to reach time agreements with Senate Republicans. Many of these nominees, which were reported by the Judiciary Committee without dissent, have been pending for months.… Continue Reading


Leahy Urges Attorney General To Implement Accountability Provisions Of Patriot Act Legislation

In advance of a Wednesday Department of Justice oversight hearing, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) today released a letter sent last month to Attorney General Eric Holder, urging the Justice Department to implement key oversight and civil liberties protections included in the Committee-passed USA PATRIOT Act Sunset Extension Act. Last year, Leahy introduced the legislation to extend expiring provisions of the USA PATRIOT Act. A bipartisan majority of the Senate Judici… Continue Reading


Comment On The Announced Retirement Plans Of Associate Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens

When the Supreme Court recesses on Justice Stevens' final day on the bench, it will mark the end of an extraordinary judicial career spanning four decades, including 35 years on our highest court. The last Justice from "the Greatest Generation," John Paul Stevens first answered the call to service when he joined the Navy during World War II. Our nation called on him again years later, and he returned to public service as an appellate judge before accepting President Ford's nomination to serve … Continue Reading


No Further Delay Of Liu Confirmation Hearing

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Wednesday responded to a letter sent yesterday by Republican members of the Committee seeking a third postponement of a hearing to consider the nomination of Professor Goodwin Liu to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. "At the time of Professor Liu's twice-rescheduled hearing, Committee members will have had more than seven weeks to review the nominee's record, and two weeks to review the materials submitted to the Committee… Continue Reading


Vermont’s ‘Art of Action’ Is Set To Come Alive In The Nation’s Capital

(MONDAY, April 5) - About 50 artworks crafted for an exhibit titled "Art of Action: Shaping Vermont's Future Through Art," will travel to Washington, D.C., next week where they will be on display from April 12 to 16, just steps away from the U.S. Capitol. Several of the artists will be on hand Tuesday, April 13, to meet with Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), who is hosting the display in the Russell Senate Office Building. The Vermont Arts Council, in collaboration with Lyman Orton and Janice Izz… Continue Reading


Burlington School District Lunch Program to Serve as National Model

Burlington, Vt. - Senator Patrick Leahy announced Friday that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has selected the Burlington School District as one of 15 school districts nationwide that will be visited by the USDA Farm to School Team to learn about Burlington's farm to school program. Burlington will be used as a national example for how Farm to School programs help to better connect children to their food and create opportunities for local farmers to provide their harvest to schools in their c… Continue Reading


Leahy: $13.6 M. Navy Contract Extension Will Take Goodrich-Vergennes Well Past Its Milestone 2000th Helicopter Diagnostics Unit

VERGENNES, Vt. - Senator Patrick Leahy Thursday announced that the U.S. Navy will award Goodrich a new $13,642,763 contract for continued work on the company's helicopter diagnostic system, which is managed by the firm's facility here. The innovative system for helicopter safety and maintenance already has earned the company more than $100 million in defense contracts, and Leahy last month joined Goodrich employees at the facility to mark shipment of the 2000th system. Work on the new contract… Continue Reading


Leahy Sets Vermont-Wide Small Business Lending Conference For Monday, April 26, In Barre

With tight credit still a problem for some Vermont businesses, U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has organized a free conference for small businesses in Vermont to learn about current lending and financing options available through local banks, credit unions, nonprofits, state entities and the federal government. The conference will be held at the Barre Auditorium on Monday, April 26, 2010, from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. More details about the conference and registration information are available … Continue Reading


Vermont Delegation Calls on Nuclear Regulatory Commission to Reconsider Closed-Door Meeting

Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) today called on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to reconsider its decision to hold a closed-door meeting with local, state and federal officials in Keene, N.H., on April 14. The Vermont delegation's letter is copied below: March 30, 2010 The Honorable Gregory B. JaczkoChairmanU.S. Nuclear Regulatory CommissionWashington, D.C. 20555-0001 Dear Chairman Jaczko: We write to follow up on the Nuclear Regulatory … Continue Reading


Comments On Reforms To The Electronic Communications Privacy Act

"I applaud the announcement today by Digital Due Process and the Center for Democracy & Technology that a coalition of privacy advocates, legal scholars, and major Internet and communication service providers have joined together to release a consensus set of proposals to modernize the Electronic Communications Privacy Act. I look forward to reviewing these ideas. While the question of how best to balance privacy and security in the 21st century has no simple answer, what is clear is that … Continue Reading


Letter from Leahy, Kerry, and Frank to World Bank President Zoellick

Congress of the United States Washington, DC 20510 The Honorable Robert ZoellickPresidentThe World Bank1818 H StreetWashington, DC 20433 Dear President Zoellick: We are writing to express our concern with the World Bank's proposed loan to fund the construction of a large coal power plant for the South African utility, Eskom, that is due to come before the Bank's board in early April. As the World Bank prepares to request a general capital increase, engages in consultations on a new energy str… Continue Reading


Records in Real Time

The Freedom of Information Act has done a lot to make government more transparent. But in Washington - where need-to-know is the favorite status symbol - most agencies still ignore the legal deadlines and take months, even years, to respond to requests. Senators Patrick Leahy, a Democrat of Vermont, and John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, have introduced a bill that would push the bureaucracy to release information more quickly. It is an important and needed fix. The Freedom of Information Act, w… Continue Reading


The Leahy Letter - March 26, 2010

March 26, 2010 - Health Care Reform Edition Comprehensive Health Care Reform Signed Into Law On March 23, 2010, Senator Leahy was on hand at the White House ceremony as President Obama signed into law the historic Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. This new law is the most comprehensive health care reform since the creation of the Medicare program in 1965 and will provide health insurance for more than 32 million uninsured Americans and improve the health insurance system fo… Continue Reading


Comment On The Senate's Passage of The Health and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010

"Today, the Senate completed the next step in reforming our nation's health insurance system by passing a series of improvements to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. We should all support these improvements. They include closing the Medicare "donut hole," making coverage more affordable, and creating a more equitable distribution of Medicaid reimbursements to states like Vermont that have acted early on reform. I worked with Senate and House Leadership to ensure Vermont and othe… Continue Reading


Vermont Delegation Heralds Grant For Vermont Council on Rural Development

U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy and Bernie Sanders and Congressman Peter Welch announced Thursday that the Vermont Council on Rural Development (VCRD) has been awarded a $2.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce. The grant, funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), will complete the funding needed to launch VCRD's "e-Vermont: The Vermont Community Broadband Project", which will stimulate broadband use in 24 Vermont towns by identifying best practices for increasing … Continue Reading


Senate Judiciary Committee Advances Leahy-Sponsored Bills To Assist Refugees

The Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday advanced two pieces of legislation sponsored by Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Senator Richard Lugar (R-Ind.). The Refugee Opportunity Act and the Return Of Talent Act will help continue long-held U.S. policy of rewarding refugees who help the country, and refugees who help those in need beyond the country's borders. The Refugee Opportunity Act will create an exception to the physical presence requirement for refugees who, during their firs… Continue Reading


Statement On The Constitutionality Of The Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act

Earlier this week, we saw what I have called the dawn of a new day of hope for tens of millions of Americans who have fallen through the cracks - or who worry with good reason that they may fall through the cracks - of our broken health insurance system. The signing into law of comprehensive health insurance reform by President Barack Obama ranks with the creation of Social Security and Medicare as a defining moment and legislative achievement. Congress and Presidents from both parties tried t… Continue Reading

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