Press Room

Press Releases

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


Statement on Credit Card Reform Bill

Mr. President, it is a mark of the difference between the Senate's agenda last year and the new Senate's agenda this year that we finally are able to debate and move toward a vote on the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act, which I strongly support. I thank and commend both Senator Dodd and Senator Shelby for their hard work on this important legislation. The Banking Committee has faced a number of extraordinary challenges this year - stabilizing our financial institu… Continue Reading


Senator Leahy, U.S. Forest Chief Announce Forest Legacy Funding

RICHMOND (Monday, May 18) - U.S. Forest Service Chief Abigail Kimbell joined Senator Patrick Leahy Monday to announce $50 million in grants to protect 24 working forests in 21 states, including Vermont, through the Forest Service's Forest Legacy Program. Chief Kimbell also announced the details of the President's Fiscal Year 2010 proposal to fund 47 Forest Legacy projects at $91 million. Kimbell, a graduate of the University of Vermont who graduated from high school in St. Albans, hailed V… Continue Reading


President To Nominate Tristram Coffin To Be U.S. Attorney For Vermont

President Obama has accepted the recommendation of Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and announced Friday that he will nominate Hinesburg attorney Tristram J. Coffin to be Vermont's next U.S. Attorney. Coffin will be one of the first six U.S. Attorneys to be nominated by the new President. Leahy said, "Tris Coffin's experience as a prosecutor and in the courtroom makes him a good match for this difficult job. His work on drug-crime issues in particular will help him hit the ground running in dealing… Continue Reading


Leahy Backs Legislation To Relieve Labor Crunch For Dairy Farmers

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) joined more than dozen U.S. Senators Thursday to introduce legislation to provide relief to the nation's ongoing agriculture labor shortage. The Agricultural Job Opportunities, Benefits and Security Act (AgJOBS) will help Vermont dairy farmers and other farmers by reforming the H-2A seasonal worker program. The bill will provide farmers with legal foreign workers, and offer a path to lawful immigration status for hardworking, law-abiding immigrants already employe… Continue Reading


Comment On Military Commissions

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is a coauthor of the Habeas Corpus Restoration Act of 2006, a bill to restore the writ of habeas corpus that was revoked in the Military Commission Act of 2006. "I have always said that establishing appropriate military commissions is possible. I objected to the military commissions that were created by the Bush-Cheney administration because they stripped away critical protections in our laws. For years I worked with others in Congress to resto… Continue Reading


Leahy Secures $476,000 For Shelburne Farms And Vermont Farm-To-School Programs

(THURSDAY, May 14) -- In the FY 2009 Omnibus Appropriations Act passed in March, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) secured $476,000 in funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for Shelburne Farms to develop strategies to enhance and improve partnerships between local farmers, students and teachers, providing additional economic opportunities for farmers and improved nutritional and health awareness for students. This effort is part of Leahy's longstanding work for farm-to-s… Continue Reading


Truckin': The Pat Leahy Story

Patrick J Leahy is the stuff of legend and he isn't finished yet. Passionate native Vermonter, devoted family man, land mine opponent, free-speech advocate, storyteller, defender of the US Constitution, published photographer, early Obama supporter, six-term US senator (the only Democrat Vermont has ever sent to the Senate), caster of 13,000 senatorial votes (only eight have achieved this longevity), fourth in seniority in a place where seniority really matters, highly publicized enemy of former… Continue Reading


A Supreme Court For All Americans

Among the most serious constitutional duties entrusted to Congress is the confirmation of Supreme Court Justices. As President Obama prepares to announce his first nominee to the nation's highest court, this is a good time to consider the vital role played by the Court in our system of government and in Americans' everyday lives. Through recent, narrowly decided cases, we have seen clearly the Supreme Court's impact on ordinary Americans. In Ledbetter v. Goodyear, we saw t… Continue Reading


Accountability Will Help Restore America’s Reputation

A Senate Judiciary Subcommittee today held the first pubic hearing on Office of Legal Counsel memoranda released last month by the Department of Justice. The memoranda, which provided binding legal counsel to the Bush administration on the legality of interrogation techniques, authorized the use of harsh techniques on individuals held in U.S. custody. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has for years sought access to the memoranda, and last year is… Continue Reading


Comment Following A Meeting At The White House With President Obama On The Upcoming Supreme Court Vacancy

I appreciate that the President has reached out to us as part of his process to select a nominee for the Supreme Court. I appreciate that he is doing so in a bipartisan manner, including both the Republican leader in the Senate and the Ranking Republican on the Judiciary Committee. He has also reached out to the other Republican members of the Judiciary Committee. Having done so, and having given each of us the opportunity to consult with him and offer our counsel, I kno… Continue Reading


Burlington Police Officer Testifies Before Leahy Panel

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) held a hearing Tuesday on the needs of state and local law enforcement. Lieutenant Kris Carlson with the Burlington Police Department testified at the hearing held in Washington. Leahy chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee. This week, thousands of law enforcement officers and officials are expected to travel to Washington to celebrate National Police Week. Last week, Leahy introduced a Senate Resolution to designate Friday, May 15, National Peace Officers Memoria… Continue Reading


Leahy Aide Nominated To Air Force Post

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) released a statement Tuesday after President Barack Obama announced his intention to nominate Daniel Ginsberg, currently a defense aide to Leahy, to be Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Manpower and Reserve Affairs. "President Obama has made another superb choice for his administration," said Leahy. "Daniel Ginsberg combines the talents of being a keen analyst with the knowledge of how to get things done in the legislative process and in the defense bureauc… Continue Reading


Committee Report Filed On Patent Reform Legislation

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) filed a Committee report Tuesday to accompany the Patent Reform Act of 2009. The patent reform legislation was ordered reported by the Senate Judiciary Committee on April 2. If enacted, the legislation would make the first major reforms to the nation's antiquated patent system in more than 55 years. Leahy said, "After weeks of consideration, the Senate Judiciary Committee last month voted overwhelmingly to send critical patent reform l… Continue Reading


Leahy Invites Burlington Police Officer To Testify In Washington

Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has invited Lieutenant Kris Carlson of the Burlington Police Department to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee in Washington. The hearing, which will explore the needs of state and local law enforcement, will be held tomorrow, Tuesday, May 12. Leahy is the chairman of the Senate panel. This week, thousands of law enforcement officers and officials are expected to travel to Washington to celebrate National Police Week. Last week, Leahy introduce… Continue Reading


EPA Brownfield Grants - Region 1, Vermont 2009

Summary Information The State of Vermont will receive $2,000,000. Seven recipients will receive funding. Four are regional recipients; Windham Regional Commission, Lamoille County Planning Commission, Northwest Regional Planning Commission, and Rutland Regional Planning Commission. Assessment grants amount to $1,400,000. Cleanup grants amount to $600,000. Recovery Act grants amount to $400,000. Regular Competition grants amount to $1,400,000. The City of Burlington will receive a $20… Continue Reading


E.P.A. Sends $2 Million in Clean-Up Funds to Vermont

Vermont's congressional delegation announced today $2 million in "Brownfields" grants for the state. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Congressman Peter Welch (D-Vt.) said the Environmental Protection Agency funding, $400,000 of which came from the economic stimulus plan, will go towards clean up of and reinvestment in properties blighted by hazardous waste. The City of Burlington will receive a $200,000 grant; the City of St. Albans will receive $400,000 in cleanup… Continue Reading


Army Inks $37 M. Contract Expansion For Vermont-Led Production Of Protective Armor For U.S. Troops

(Thursday, May 7, 2009) - Vermont will solidify its role in protecting mobile U.S. soldiers from death and injury from arms fire and improvised explosive devices (IEDs) under a new $37 million contract from the U.S. Army, according to Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). Leahy said the Vermont-based unit of General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products has received a new contract to manufacture additional reactive armor tile sets for the Bradley Fighting Vehicle, the Army's basic troop transpo… Continue Reading


Leahy-Chaired Panel Reports Vermont Nominee To Senate Floor

A panel chaired by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Thursday reported the nomination of Judge William K. Sessions, III, to be the Chair of the U.S. Sentencing Commission to the full Senate for consideration. Judge Sessions is a member of the Sentencing Commission. President Obama nominated him to Chair the Commission on April 20. Sessions is a federal judge on the Vermont District Court, where he has served since 1995. He was first appointed to the U.S. Sentencing Commissio… Continue Reading


Comment of Chairman Patrick Leahy

"I value the contributions of all members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, including the longstanding service of Senator Specter. I am consulting with Senator Sessions, our Republican Ranking Member, in light of our recently revised Committee membership to consider any necessary adjustments to Judiciary Committee subcommittees. I hope to have a decision by early next week." # # # # #… Continue Reading


Senate Panel Reports Leahy-Authored Bill To Strengthen Violence Against Women Act

(Thursday, May 7, 2009) - The Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday reported legislation to help address the needs of domestic violence victims by strengthening key components of the 1994 Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). The Improving Assistance to Domestic and Sexual Violence Victims Act was introduced in January by Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). "This legislation was developed with the help and assistance of a number of the outstanding advocacy groups that hav… Continue Reading

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