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Press Releases

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

12.31.08

National Law Enforcement Groups Back Holder Nomination

- A wide range of national law enforcement organizations have endorsed Eric Holder's nomination to be the next Attorney General of the United States, urging the Senate to confirm Holder to the nation's top law enforcement post. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Wednesday released nearly a dozen additional letters endorsing the nomination, including letters from the National Sheriffs' Association and National Troopers Association. Leahy also released letters in sup… Continue Reading


12.31.08

Comments On Chief Justice Roberts’ Year-End Report On The Federal Judiciary

"In his year-end report, Chief Justice Roberts highlights the essential role of the federal judiciary, the cost containment measures the judiciary has adopted, and the issue of judicial compensation. "Our judiciary is the envy of the world, and it is a source of America's strength and stability. The branches of our federal government act as checks upon each other but also rely on each other, and I have always believed that Congress needs to take seriously the issues facing the federal judiciar… Continue Reading


12.30.08

Leahy Focuses On Anti-Crime Funding Needs By Law Enforcement Agencies In The Stimulus Package As He Sets First Judiciary Committee Hearing In The New Congress

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) today set a hearing for Thursday, Jan. 8, 2009, to examine proposals to provide resources for underfunded law enforcement programs in the economic stimulus package. The stimulus package is being drafted by lawmakers in advance of the 111th Congress. The hearing will be the first Judiciary Committee hearing of the new Congress. Leahy, who also serves as a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, has requested funding in the s… Continue Reading


12.22.08

Holder Nomination Receives Broad Support

President-elect Barack Obama's pick to be the next Attorney General of the United States is receiving broad, bipartisan support from law enforcement officers, organizations, and advocates across the country. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) on Monday released letters from more than four dozen individuals and organizations that support the nomination of Eric H. Holder Jr. to be Attorney General of the United States, including support from law enforcement, crime vic… Continue Reading


12.22.08

Law Enforcement, Crime Victims Advocates, Civil Rights Organizations And Republican Officials Urge Confirmation Of Eric H. Holder Jr. As Attorney General Of The United States

Holder Nomination Receives Broad Support Law Enforcement, Crime Victims Advocates, Civil Rights Organizations And Republican OfficialsUrge Confirmation Of Eric H. Holder Jr. As Attorney General Of The United States WASHINGTON (Monday, Dec. 22, 2008) - President-elect Barack Obama's pick to be the next Attorney General of the United States is receiving broad, bipartisan support from law enforcement officers, organizations, and advocates across the country. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman P… Continue Reading


12.22.08

Vermont Wins Emergency Food And Shelter Assistance

BURLINGTON- At a time of growing demands, Vermont emergency food and shelter programs were awarded $329,767 to help feed and shelter the hungry and homeless, Sens. Patrick Leahy and Bernie Sanders and Rep. Peter Welch announced. Vermont's total of $339,767 includes $21,141 for Caledonia County; $83,603 for ChittendenCounty; $24,251 for Orleans County; $46,480 for Rutland County; $39,171 for WashingtonCounty; and $115,121 for a state set-aside committee. Leahy said,… Continue Reading


12.19.08

Leahy Releases His Stimulus Package Priorities As Drafting Process Begins To Take Shape

U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Friday released his suggestions to President-elect Barack Obama for elements of a major stimulus package to help jump-start the ailing economy. Leahy said he suggested economic stimulus priorities that he believes can go farthest in reawakening the U.S. economy, creating jobs here at home and assisting states like Vermont that are struggling with slackening revenue and difficult budget cuts. Leahy's suggestions come as the process of writing a stimulus … Continue Reading


12.19.08

Reaction to President-elect Obama’s Choice Of Congressman Ray LaHood (R-Ill.) To Be Secretary Of Transportation

"I applaud President-elect Obama's selection of Congressman Ray LaHood to be the next Transportation Secretary. This is a choice that not only will play very well in Peoria but also on Capitol Hill and across the country. "Over the years I have enjoyed working with Ray LaHood on a variety of important agriculture and law enforcement issues. He was a key ally in our efforts to pass the Innocence Protection Act, which improves access to DNA testing that can help exonerate or convict those ac… Continue Reading


12.19.08

Leahy Calls On Fed Chief To Help Spur Lending For Affordable Housing

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Senator Herb Kohl (D- Wisc.) are leading 19 senators in urging Federal Reserve Chairman Benjamin Bernanke to use funds at his disposal to increase the availability of loans through the state Housing Finance Agencies (HFAs) for low- and middle-income first-time homebuyers and refinancing borrowers. While lending programs at the Vermont Housing Finance Agency continue to operate, across the country many HFAs have had to limit, or in some states even halt, the… Continue Reading


12.15.08

Holder Hearing Rescheduled

In an effort to accommodate Senate Republicans, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has postponed the confirmation hearing for Eric H. Holder Jr., to be the Attorney General of the United States for more than 30 days from today, January 15, 2009. "The Committee has not yet received the names of other designees for high-ranking Department of Justice officials that we had anticipated and more time is now available to the Judiciary Committee. Therefore, to accommodate the… Continue Reading


12.15.08

New Discount Pharmacy Shows Continued Progress In Vermont Community Health Centers

COLCHESTER- Senator Bernie Sanders, Congressman Peter Welch, and a spokesman for Senator Patrick Leahy announced today the opening of a new, first-of-its-kind "Community Health Pharmacy" in Colchester. The pharmacy is a clear example of the remarkable progress and growth of the Federally Qualified Health Center program in Vermont where, in the last six years, the number of health centers in Vermont has expanded from two centers to seven. About one in seven Vermonters - more than 80,000… Continue Reading


12.15.08

Holder Returns Bipartisan Questionnaire To Judiciary Committee

Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Monday released the completed, bipartisan questionnaire submitted to the Committee by Attorney General designee Eric Holder. Leahy sent the questionnaire to Holder on Friday, Dec. 5, four days after his designation was announced by President-elect Obama. The questionnaire was returned to the Committee Monday, and is available online: http://judiciary.senate.gov/. Leahy has scheduled hearings to consider Holder's nomination for January 15, 20… Continue Reading


12.12.08

Leahy Slams ‘Midnight’ Bid To Relax Mercury-In-Fish Warnings To Women And Children

[The Post Friday reported that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the White House are considering easing the official advisory cautioning women and children about mercury in certain fish. Scientists at the Environmental Protection Agency reportedly are concerned about the move to relax the warning. The move is one of several "midnight" rules and policy changes in the pipeline in the waning days of the Bush Administration. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), long a leader on mercury pollution p… Continue Reading


12.12.08

In Final Days, Bush Administration Continues To Stonewall

Even in the final days of the Bush administration, the Department of Justice continues to stonewall congressional subpoenas for documents from the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC), according to the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) on Friday underscored the Department's continued obstruction and hit the Department on going back on its word to provide the Committee with copies of six documents related to a subpoena issued in October for OLC documents. In a l… Continue Reading


12.12.08

New Leadership Needed At Justice Department Without Delay

-Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) today released the following statement urging Democrats and Republicans to work with the incoming administration to promptly confirm Eric Holder, President-elect Obama's designee to be Attorney General of the United States. Historically, the Attorney General designees of incoming presidents have received confirmation hearings within four weeks of being announced. On Tuesday, Leahy announced that Holder's confirmation proceedings wou… Continue Reading


12.11.08

Comment On President-elect Obama's Choice Of Former Senator Tom Daschle To Head The Department Of Health And Human Services And A New White House Office Of Health Reform

President-elect Obama has made another superb choice in selecting Tom Daschle to head the Department of Health and Human Services as well as a new White House Office of Health Reform. Tom Daschle is a born leader and a skilled policymaker, and he has been a friend for 25 years. Health care reform is sorely needed and long overdue. It will be one of the core projects of the Obama presidency and certainly one of the most complex and difficult issues on the nation's agenda. No one is better … Continue Reading


12.10.08

Vermont Delegation Introduces Bill To Waive State Transportation Match Requirement

The Vermont congressional delegation introduced legislation today that would waive the state and local match requirement for all federally-funded highway, transit and rail projects through September 2009. The legislation is intended to stimulate the economy and create jobs by jump-starting projects stalled by state budget deficits. At the same time, it would immediately improve Vermont's and the nation's crumbling transportation infrastructure. "In these tough economic times, we must look for … Continue Reading


12.10.08

Following Vermont Hearing, Leahy Introduces Reauthorization For Anti-Crime Grant Program

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) today introduced legislation to reauthorize a critical grant program targeted at reducing crime in rural communities. The Crime-Free Rural States Reauthorization Act will authorize $40 million over four years for rural states to address crime and drug issues. Leahy chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, which held a hearing Dec. 5 in St. Albans, Vermont, to hear from officials and community leaders who are working together to combat crime and drug use in St. … Continue Reading


12.10.08

Statement Of Senate Judiciary Committee, On The Introduction Of S. Res. 728, “National Mentoring Month”

I am honored to join Senator Kennedy and others to introduce S.Res. 728, which designates January 2009 as National Mentoring Month. Mentoring a child is a uniquely rewarding experience for both the mentor and the child. Research continues to support that building these positive relationships helps keep children off of drugs, in school and off the streets, and out of trouble. This month, I brought the Senate Judiciary Committee to St. Albans, Vermont, for a field hearing about "Community-Bas… Continue Reading


12.10.08

Leahy, Sanders, Other Senators Insist That Blagojevich Resign

U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy and Bernie Sanders of Vermont today called for the resignation of Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich one day after he was arrested and accused of putting President-elect Barack Obama's former United States Senate seat up for sale. The Vermont senators signed a letter also warning Blagojevich not to exercise his power to name Obama's Senate successor, saying that could trigger a provision in the U.S. Constitution that lets the Senate refuse to seat a member. T… Continue Reading

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