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


Udall, Senators Tell Trump Administration: Stop Playing Politics with the U.S. Postal Service

In thinly-veiled attempt to retaliate against perceived critics like Amazon founder and Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos, President Trump recently threatened not to approve the loan unless package rates were raised by an exorbitant amount The hardworking men and women of the USPS working the front lines, keeping our society and economy functioning during the COVID-19 pandemic don't deserve to be political pawns WASHINGTON - Today, U.S. Senator Tom Udall (D-N.M.) led a group of 29 senators… Continue Reading


Van Hollen, Colleagues Urge Trump to Immediately Use DPA to Manufacture PPE, COVID-19 Testing Supplies

Today, U.S. Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) led eight of his Senate colleagues in a letter to President Donald J. Trump urging him to expand his use of Title III of the Defense Production Act (DPA) to dramatically increase domestic production capacity for personal protective equipment (PPE) and COVID-19 testing supplies. In Maryland, the state is still lacking over 2 million requested surgical masks, over 1.8 million requested N-95 masks, and over 52,000 requested swabs. "An analysis by Harv… Continue Reading


Leahy and McGovern Lead 107 Members Of Congress In Opposing Trump Reversal On Landmines, And Pressing For Answers To Their Detailed Questions

(WEDNESDAY, May 6, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) Wednesday headed a congressional oversight letter to Secretary of Defense Mark Esper expressing opposition to the Trump Administration's reversal of the policy limiting the use of antipersonnel landmines to the defense of South Korea, and seeking answers to questions on the justification for the reversal and future plans. In a letter signed by Leahy, McGovern and 107 other members of the Senate and the Hou… Continue Reading


Leahy And McGovern Lead Members Of Congress In Pressing Pompeo And Mnuchin To Confirm That U.S. Policy Does Not Preclude Shipments Of Medical Equipment To Cuba To Combat COVID-19

(TUESDAY, May 5, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) Tuesday headed a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to confirm that U.S. policy does not preclude companies and humanitarians from providing essential medical equipment, food, and information to the people of Cuba to combat COVID-19. In a letter signed by Leahy, McGovern and 25 members of the Senate and the House, they note that it is "dangerous and contrary to our … Continue Reading


Leahy, Grassley, Feinstein And Cornyn Pursue FOIA Compliance During Pandemic

(MONDAY, May 4, 2020) - U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), and John Cornyn (R-Texas), are pressing for information about the federal government's ability to respond to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests and otherwise comply with FOIA in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. In a letter to the Justice Department's Office of Information Policy (OIP), the senators, all members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, noted reports of decrease… Continue Reading


Brown, Bennet, Durbin, Wyden Lead Letter Calling For Tax Credit Expansion To Help Working Families During Coronoavirus Economic Downturn

Expansion Would Put Money in Pockets of Working Americans, Provide Badly-Needed Financial Resources as the COVID- 19 Economic Downturn Continues Into Next Year WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, U.S. Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) led a group of 39 senators in a letter to Senate Leaders calling for a temporary expansion of the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Child Tax Credit (CTC) in the next coronavirus relief package. As the econom… Continue Reading


Brown, Collins, Stabenow Urge USDA To Target Relief To Local Farmers In Finalized Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

Senators are Following up on Their Initial Request and Urging USDA to Ensure Provisions for Local Food Producers are Specifically Included in the Newly Created Coronavirus Food Assistance Program WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Susan Collins (R-ME) and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) led a group of bipartisan senators in urging the USDA to target COVID-19 relief provisions to reach local farmers in the new Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP). USDA created CFAP to administer reli… Continue Reading


Vermont Delegation Urges Secretary Mnuchin and Administrator Carranza to Clarify PPP Loan Forgiveness for Small Businesses

Senator Patrick Leahy (D), Senator Bernie Sanders (I), and Representative Peter Welch (D) on Wednesday sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Small Business Administration (SBA) Administrator Carranza urging them to provide clear and official guidance about the loan forgiveness provisions in the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). In the letter, Leahy, Sanders and Welch said: "We encourage Treasury and the SBA to act now to avoid more confusion for small business owners and lende… Continue Reading


Comment On The U.S. House of Representatives' Lawsuit Against The Trump Administration For Redirecting Billions Meant For Military Families Toward The President's Wall

Today the D.C. Court of Appeals is hearing arguments in the U.S. House of Representatives' lawsuit against the Trump administration for hijacking billions of congressionally appropriated dollars to benefit military families and redirecting them to build President Trump's wall. The House's central argument - that Congress, and Congress alone, possesses the power of the purse - doesn't require any esoteric interpretation of the Constitution; it simply requires a reading of its plain text. While … Continue Reading


Leahy To Host Delegation Tele-Town Hall Update On The Coronavirus In Vermont

WEDNESDAY, April 22, 2020 - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) will be hosting the third Vermont Congressional Delegation tele-town hall on Thursday, at 5 p.m., to provide an update on the coronavirus response and take questions from Vermonters. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Representative Peter Welch (D-Vt.), and Governor Phil Scott (R) will be participating, along with experts from around the state. As Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Leahy played a leading role in negotiat… Continue Reading


Comment On Senate Passage Of The Coronavirus Aid Package 3.5

I am glad Congress was able to reach bipartisan agreement on an interim bill to help small businesses that have been devastated by this crisis, and to provide aid to hospitals and improve testing capability for COVID-19. Now is not the time to let up. We cannot be led to believe that our work here is done. There are important changes that still need to be made to ensure the SBA programs work for our restaurants, small inns and hotels, and others that are waiting to reopen. Still others are w… Continue Reading


Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy And Representative Peter Welch On The Proposal To Close Or Consolidate Vermont State Colleges

Vermont's state colleges have provided Vermonters with access to higher education and helped to build the Vermont workforce for the past 60 years. They are an essential part of our post-secondary system and the economic drivers of rural regions around the state. Community members, students and faculty have reached out to us over the last several days worried about the future of their education, jobs and towns. We share their concerns. The proposal in front of the Vermont State College System… Continue Reading


Leahy Presses Trump Administration To Release Any Secret Justification For Trump’s Unprecedented Claim Of “Total Authority” During Pandemic

(TUESDAY, April 21, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday wrote to Attorney General Barr and White House Counsel Cippolone asking them to release to Congress copies of any documents produced by the Department of Justice and the White House Counsel's Office articulating the legal basis, if any exists, for President Trump and Vice President Pence's sweeping claims of "total" authority to override states' independent responses to the COVID-19 crisis. Policies of previous administrations ro… Continue Reading


Leahy And Other Senate Democrats Urge Trump Administration To Protect Food Supply And Essential Workers During COVID-19 Crisis

(MONDAY, April 20, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is among 36 Democratic senators, led by Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, urging Vice President Mike Pence and other members of the Trump Administration to take action to help ensure the safety of the nation's food supply and protect essential workers in the food supply chain. Leahy, a leading member of the Agriculture Committee, is a former Chairman of … Continue Reading


Leahy And Lankford Urge State Department And DHS To Exercise Discretion And Grant Relief To Vulnerable Refugees And Special Immigrant Visa Holders

(THURSDAY, April 16, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Senator James Lankford (R-Okla.) are urging Secretary of State Michael Pompeo and Acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Chad Wolf to exercise discretion and automatically extend the validity periods of critical documents for refugees and Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) holders approved for resettlement in the United States until COVID-19 travel restrictions are lifted. They emphasized that this small, reasonable measur… Continue Reading


REAX Of Appropriations Vice Chair Patrick Leahy On Being Appointed To President Trump’s Council To Reopen America

If the President is genuinely reaching out to listen to candid and diverse views on a decision that will profoundly affect millions of Americans for years to come, I look forward to sharing my views. They will be candid, and he knows if I disagree, I will tell him. Decisions affecting the public health of the American people must reflect the economic distress and sacrifices that are being borne in communities across Vermont and the nation. And to succeed, they must be based on facts and medic… Continue Reading


Leahy, Sanders, Welch Announce More Than $9 Million In Grants To Support Vermont’s Airports

(WEDNESDAY, April 15, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Senator Bernie Sanders, (I-Vt.), and Representative Peter Welch (D-Vt.) Wednesday announced $9,020,115 in grants to support 10 Vermont airports during the COVID-19 crisis. The funds are part of $10 billion in federal assistance for airports included in the CARES Act that was passed by Congress and signed into law last month. As Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Leahy played a leading role in securing the funding f… Continue Reading


Comment On President Trump’s Slashing Of U.S. Contributions To The World Health Organization Amid The Global COVID-19 Pandemic

"Withholding funds for WHO in the midst of the worst pandemic in a century makes as much sense as cutting off ammunition to an ally as the enemy closes in. The White House knows that it grossly mishandled this crisis from the beginning, ignoring multiple warnings and squandering valuable time, dismissing medical science, comparing COVID 19 to the common cold, and saying 'everything will be fine'. Even after restricting flights from China which the President likes to brag about after praising C… Continue Reading


Leahy And Stabenow Lead Letter Urging USDA To Take Immediate Action To Support Dairy Farmers

(MONDAY, April 13, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), the most senior member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, and Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), the Committee's Ranking Member, on Monday led 23 other senators in sending a letter to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue urging immediate action to support the nation's dairy farmers and stabilize dairy markets amid the sharp decline caused by COVID-19. The health emergency's impact on dairy prices has alre… Continue Reading


Brown, Murkowski, Stabenow, Bipartisan Senators Press USDA To Provide Relief For Local Farmers During COVID-19 Pandemic

Senators also Urging USDA to Conduct Outreach for Underserved Farmers, Establish a National Hotline to Manage Incoming Producer Inquiries and Simplify the Application Process WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Lisa Murkowski (R-AL), and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) led a bipartisan group of senators in urging the Trump Administration to provide relief for local farmers who are struggling as the nation works to combat the spread of COVID-19. In a letter sent to U.S. Department of Agricu… Continue Reading

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