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


Vermont Receives $536,400 for Energy Efficient Appliance Rebates

, December 2 - Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) today announced that Vermont's Energy Efficient Appliance Rebate Program will receive an additional $536,400 from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). Funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the program provides rebates to consumers replacing used appliances with new Energy Star-certified appliances. Vermont's program, which will be administered by the Vermont Energy Investment Corpo… Continue Reading


Leahy To File Antitrust Repeal Amendment Today

(Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2009) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday announced that he will file an amendment to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act that will repeal the health insurance and medical malpractice insurance industries' exemption from federal antitrust laws. Leahy introduced the Health Insurance Industry Antitrust Enforcement Act in September. Leahy chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, which held a hearing about the legislation in October. The bill is cosponsored by 18 sen… Continue Reading


On The Cartagena Landmine Ban Treaty Review Conference

Senator Leahy Comments on Landmine Ban MR. LEAHY. Madam President, I want to speak briefly on a subject that many Members of Congress - Democrats and Republicans - have had an abiding interest in over the years. Throughout this week, delegates from countries around the world will gather in Cartagena, Colombia, to participate in the Second Review Conference of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and on Their Destruction.… Continue Reading


Senate Confirms California District Court Nominee

(Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2009) - The Senate Tuesday afternoon confirmed Judge Jacqueline Nguyen by a vote of 97-0 to fill a vacancy on the federal district court in the Central District of California. Nguyen will become the first Vietnamese American to serve as a federal district court judge in the United States, and the first Asian Pacific American woman to serve as a federal district court judge in California. She testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee on September 23, and her nomination wa… Continue Reading


Comment On The President’s Plan For Afghanistan

[The President Tuesday afternoon met at the White House with congressional leaders, including Senator Patrick Leahy, to outline and discuss his plan for Afghanistan. Leahy (D-Vt.) chairs the Appropriations Committee's Subcommittee on The State Department and Foreign Operations and is the third-most-senior member of the Senate.] "The President inherited a faltering strategy in Afghanistan that has failed so massively that at this point there are no good answers. He deserves great credit for pu… Continue Reading


Rutland High School

Mrs. Kravitz Civics' students On December 1, 2009, five students from each of the seven Civics classes offered at Rutland High School were asked to attend a Skype video chat with Senator Leahy. This was Rutland High School's first chat with the Senator. The students along with their professor, Ms. Jennifer Kravitz, and Principal, Mr. Bill Olsen, discussed issues such as health care reform, Afghanistan, Vermont troops, the economy, energy conservation and farming programs in Vermont. They spoke … Continue Reading


Rutland High School

Mrs. Kravitz Civics' students On December 1, 2009, five students from each of the seven Civics classes offered at Rutland High School were asked to attend a Skype video chat with Senator Leahy. This was Rutland High School's first chat with the Senator. The students along with their professor, Ms. Jennifer Kravitz, and Principal, Mr. Bill Olsen, discussed issues such as health care reform, Afghanistan, Vermont troops, the economy, energy conservation and farming programs in Vermont. This chat w… Continue Reading


Statement On The Nomination Of Irene Berger To The Southern District Of West Virginia

It has taken nearly a month to obtain Republican consent to consider the nomination of Judge Irene Berger to the Southern District of West Virginia. Judge Berger is a consensus nominee unanimously rated well qualified by the American Bar Association's Standing Committee on the Federal Judiciary, the highest rating possible. Her nomination has the support of both of West Virginia's highly respected Senators. Senator Byrd, as the senior member of the Senate, is the President pro tempore, and is … Continue Reading


Leahy Hits U.S. Refusal To Join Landmine Treaty

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is sharply critical of the Obama Administration's decision, announced Tuesday by the State Department, to decline to join the international treaty to ban anti-personnel landmines, a weapon that kills or maims thousands of civilians each year. "This is a default of U.S. leadership and a detour from the clear path of history," Leahy said in a statement. "The United States is the most powerful nation on earth. We don't need these weapons and most of our allies have long a… Continue Reading


The Leahy Letter - November 24, 2009

Senate Begins Debate On Health Care Bill On Saturday, November 21, in a rare weekend session, Senator Leahy spoke on the Senate Floor on the Senate's health insurance reform plan. By a vote of 60 to 39, the Senate voted to end a filibuster on a procedural vote. Senator Leahy voted against the filibuster and in support of moving to debate on the bill. As the Senate debates the Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act, you can visit Senator Leahy's Senate Checkup for up-to-date information ab… Continue Reading


U.S. Senate Confirms Vermont Judge For Court Vacancy

The U.S. Senate has confirmed Vermont State Judge Christina Reiss to a judgeship on Vermont's U.S. District Court. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) steered Reiss's nomination to confirmation by unanimous consent on Saturday night during a rare weekend session in which the Senate also voted to proceed to a debate on health reform legislation. Leahy, who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, has kept the Vermont nomination on a fast track, securing Judiciary Committee ap… Continue Reading


Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy On Passage Of S.1472, The Human Rights Enforcement Act

I am always looking for ways in which we can improve the investigation and prosecution of international human rights abusers, including those who seek safe haven in the United States. That is what led me to develop and fight for several years to enact the Anti-Atrocity Alien Deportation Act, which became law in 2004. That is what I did in supporting and implementing legislation for the Convention Against Torture. That is what I have done in my work on the State and Foreign Operations Appropria… Continue Reading


Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Motion To Proceed To H.R. 3590, The “Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act”

Leahy Debates Senate Health Insurance Reform Plan Decision time is near on health insurance reform, and I will vote today to end the filibuster so the Senate can begin this important and historic debate to improve and reform our Nation's health insurance system. Let's not duck the debate. Let the debate begin. Let's not hide from votes. Let's have the courage to vote and stand up and vote on the amendments. Let the American people know where we stand and not say, well,… Continue Reading


Leahy To Chair Department Of Homeland Security Oversight Hearing

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Friday announced that the Committee will hold an oversight hearing with Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano on Wednesday, December 9. It will be Napolitano's second appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee, which has jurisdiction over immigration, citizenship and related issues. Secretary Napolitano first testified in May. The Senate Judiciary Committee has held periodic oversig… Continue Reading


Senate Judiciary Committee Approves Nomination Of Vermont Judge Christina Reiss For Vermont’s U.S. District Court Vacancy

The U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday approved the nomination of Vermont State Judge Christina Reiss of Essex Junction, to a judgeship on Vermont's U.S. District Court. Reiss's nomination, approved without dissent in a voice vote, was steered through the committee by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), the panel's chairman. Leahy had recommended Reiss to President Obama, who nominated her last month. If confirmed by the full Senate, Reiss will be the first woman to serve on Vermont's federa… Continue Reading


Leicester Central School

Ms. Horn's and Ms. Elizabeth Root's 5th and 6th grade classes For students in grades 5 and 6 at the Leicester Central School, a study of the Constitution was followed by a direct online chat with Senator Leahy. The Senator discussed not only the Constitution with the students, but also the issues of global warming, health care, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and his career as a Senator. This was Senator Leahy's first online chat with Leicester Central School. Several questions asked by the s… Continue Reading


Comments of Senator Patriick Leahy On Committee Progress On The Free Flow Of Information Act

[Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) made the following comments about the Free Flow of Information Act at an executive business meeting on Thursday. Under Leahy's chairmanship in the last Congress, the Judiciary Committee for the first time reported legislation to establish a federal shield for reporters. He first listed the Free Flow of Information Act for Committee consideration in April, and the bill has been stalled before the Committee.] "I remain … Continue Reading


Senate Confirms Hamilton To Seventh Circuit

The Senate Thursday confirmed Judge David Hamilton to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. The confirmation broke a five month delay by Senate Republicans in considering the nomination. The final vote on Hamilton's confirmation was 59-39. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), who, as chairman, worked to confirm more judicial nominations during the Bush administration than did a Republican majority, praised the confirmation, and urged the Senate to … Continue Reading


Leahy: I Will Vote To End Filibuster So Senate Can Begin Debate On Health Insurance Reform

"Decision time is nearing on health insurance reform, and I will vote to end the filibuster on Saturday so the Senate can begin this important and historic debate. We cannot afford to let the health industry's sentries of the status quo kick the can down the road as they have done so often before. The country suffers when there is a failure to act on serious challenges that ordinary Americans face in their daily lives. "This is a defining moment for the Senate and for the country, ranking alo… Continue Reading


Leahy Introduces Legislation To Further Assist First Responders

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) today introduced legislation to modify a federal grant process to allow first responders across the country to use federal grant funding to maintain crucial emergency equipment. The legislation is cosponsored by Senator George Voinovich (R-Ohio). The Strengthening and Updating Resources and Equipment (SURE) Act would modify the Homeland Security Act of 2002 to allow grants issued to first responders to be used for costs associated with the maintenance of cr… Continue Reading

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