Press Room

Press Releases

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


Bush Signs Bill Enacting Leahy’s National Guard Empowerment Reforms, And Leahy’s Repeal Of The ‘Insurrection Act Rider’

(Wednesday, Jan. 30) -- President Bush has signed into law an annual defense authorization bill that includes key victories for the National Guard that were engineered by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), the Democratic co-chair of the Senate's 95-member National Guard Caucus. Leahy's National Guard Empowerment reforms, drawn from a bill Leahy introduced with Senator Kit Bond (R-Mo.), will give the Guard more bureaucratic muscle at the Pentagon in decision making about the Guard's missions, equipm… Continue Reading


Leahy Urges Commission On Civil Rights To Approve State Charters

(Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2008) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday sent a letter to the Chairman of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights expressing concern that the Commission has been slow to renew the advisory committee charters of Vermont and dozens of other states. Leahy's letter was sent on the same day that members of the country's leading civil rights organizations called on the U.S. Justice Department to discontinue partisan appointments and the recent politicization of the Commission on C… Continue Reading


Response From Attorney General Mukasey About Waterboarding

The Senate Judiciary Committee late Tuesday night received a letter from Attorney General Michael Mukasey in response to inquiries from members of the Committee about the administration's position on the legality of waterboarding. The Attorney General will testify Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee. "This last-minute response from the Attorney General echoes what other administration officials have said about the use of waterboarding. It does not, however, answer the critical q… Continue Reading


Attorney General Michael Mukasey’s Prepared Testimony For The Department Of Justice Oversight Hearing

"I look forward to reviewing Attorney General Mukasey's prepared remarks and look forward to his first appearance before the Judiciary Committee since his confirmation. I hope that he is prepared to be more forthcoming in response to the questions of the Senators on the Committee than his predecessor, who left hundreds of questions unanswered and allowed the administration to exercise unchecked executive power. Attorney General Mukasey's prepared testimony did not address issues Members of the… Continue Reading


Senate Consideration Of The FISA Amendments Act Of 2007

"The Senate today rejected the tactics of obstructionism and delay employed by the Republican minority and the White House. In refusing to allow the entire Senate the opportunity to openly and fairly debate the important issue of amending our surveillance laws, Republicans have brought to a screeching halt the Senate's extensive efforts over the last several months to protect this country and the privacy and civil liberties of all Americans. We worked closely with this administration to make i… Continue Reading


Leahy Secures Funding To Protect And Restore Bethel Town Hall

(MONDAY, Jan. 28) -- Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has secured more than $300,000 in the newly enacted federal budget passed by Congress and signed by the President that will help protect and restore the historic Bethel Town Hall. The federal funding will come in the form of a Save America's Treasures grant and will likely be used to complete foundation repairs and masonry work. Leahy said, "The Bethel Town Hall embodies the very identity of the close-knit community it serves. For more than a … Continue Reading


The Night Of President Bush’s Last State Of The Union Address

As the Bush presidency winds down, the squandered opportunities continue to pile up. By now it is clear that the President has decided to hand off many of the nation's biggest problems to his successor. I am especially concerned that one of the problems that he is deferring is bringing our troops home from Iraq. Tonight he again made clear his intention to keep Americans in the middle of that conflict and to keep sending tax dollars to Iraq on a trajectory that is headed for a trillion dollar… Continue Reading


Leahy Untangles USDA Red Tape, Freeing Up To $5 M. In Flood Disaster Relief For Vermont Dairy Farmers

(Monday, Jan. 28) - Senator Patrick Leahy Monday succeeded in convincing the U.S. Department of Agriculture(USDA) to untangle red tape that was preventing Vermont dairy farmers from getting flood disaster aid approved last year by Congress. The rules change, issued today by USDA, will mean up to $5 million in additional disaster relief in Vermont. Last year, Leahy worked to make sure Vermont farmers hit by spring floods were covered in a farm disaster relief package crafted by Congress. (PL 11… Continue Reading


Bipartisan Coalition Of 19 Senators Makes One Last Appeal To DHS Secretary Chertoff To Limit The Damage Of Proposed New Border Requirements Set To Begin This Thursday

(Monday, Jan. 28) -- Led by U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ted Stevens (R-Alaska), and Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), a bipartisan group of 19 senators Monday urged U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff to pull the plug on new border requirements that he plans to impose beginning this Thursday. The senators - eight Democratic senators, 10 Republican senators, and one independent senator -- ask Chertoff to continue accepting oral declarations of citizenship and govern… Continue Reading


White House Signals Intent To Strip Critical FOIA Funds From OIGS

Move Would Run Afoul Of Newly Enacted OPEN Government Act WASHINGTON (Thursday, Jan. 24, 2008) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) says funds for the Office of Government Information Services authorized under the newly enacted OPEN Government Act will be shifted to the Department of Justice, according to White House aides. The OPEN Government Act, a new law signed by President Bush on Dec. 31, made the first real reforms to the Freedom of Information Act in more than a … Continue Reading


The Judiciary Committee’s Proposed Amendment To The FISA Amendments Act Of 2007, S.2248

Mr. President, I speak today in support of the Judiciary Committee's amendment to the FISA Amendments Act of 2007, which the Select Committee on Intelligence reported last fall. The Judiciary Committee amendment would make important improvements to the Intelligence Committee bill, while maintaining its structure and authority. The so-called Protect America Act was rushed through the Senate last summer in an atmosphere of fear and intimidation. It was a bad bill that has provided sweeping new … Continue Reading


Introduction Of The Civil Rights Act Of 2008

Our great Nation was founded on the fundamental principle that all persons are created equal. We have long committed, and re-committed, ourselves to ensuring that all persons have the right to prosper through hard work and ingenuity. However, for many Americans, those rights still remain illusory. Today, we introduce a comprehensive bill to vindicate our founding principles and make the promise of equal opportunity in the workplace a reality for all Americans. I am proud to cosponsor the Ci… Continue Reading


The Kennedy/Leahy Inspector General Review Amendment (Am. 3862), To The FISA Amendments Act Of 2007, S. 2248

Senator Kennedy and I have offered this important amendment to ensure that there will be some measure of accountability for the unlawful actions of this administration in the years following 9/11. Regrettably, those opposing this common-sense review have so far succeeded in stopping the full Senate from even considering its merits. It is a sad day for the American public when its elected officials stonewall a measure designed to shed light on the government's efforts to unlawfully spy on i… Continue Reading


Leahy Presses To Add Food Stamp Component To Stimulus Package

(Thursday, January 24) - In a letter to the Senate's leadership Thursday, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) urged inclusion of a temporary expansion of Food Stamp benefits in the economic stimulus package now under development in Congress. "A stimulus package provides an opportunity to give a boost to the economy and at the same time deliver meaningful assistance to those that will be most impacted by a possible economic downturn," Leahy wrote. Food Stamps are a key element of the safety net for… Continue Reading


The Feingold Amendment (Am. 3909), To The FISA Amendments Act Of 2007, S. 2248

I support Senator Feingold's amendment to provide Congress with additional materials from the FISA Court to enable Congress to conduct more effective oversight. This amendment is one of the many improvements to the Senate Intelligence bill adopted by the Judiciary Committee and included in the Judiciary Committee's substitute amendment. Regrettably, that substitute was tabled by the full Senate earlier today. But I urge Senators to reconsider their votes with respect to this simple but critic… Continue Reading


Leahy Sets Hearing To Examine Founding Fathers Project

(Thursday, Jan. 24, 2008) - The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing Feb. 7 to examine the progress of the Founding Fathers Project, which was established more than a half century ago to publish the complete, annotated writings of country's six founding fathers and make these historical treasures available to the public. The program has received criticism in recent years for its high costs, slow progress and lack of accountability. Scholars and researchers at … Continue Reading


Leahy Outlines Strengths Of Judiciary Committee Substitute Language

(Thursday, Jan. 24, 2008) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Wednesday afternoon took to the Senate floor to discuss the important work of the Judiciary Committee in crafting legislation to amend the country's critical surveillance laws. The Judiciary Committee in November passed an improved version of the Intelligence Committee's Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) Amendments Act, including measures to strengthen… Continue Reading


Statement On The White House Withdrawal Of The Nomination Of E. Duncan Getchell, Jr. To The 4th Circuit Court Of Appeals

"I was disappointed last September when the President chose a nominee specifically opposed by Virginia's Republican and Democratic Senators. The nomination of Duncan Getchell seemed to be an effort to pick a political fight rather than a nominee the Senate could confirm to fill a vacancy on the 4th Circuit. Now more time has been wasted and we are into the President's last year in office. With the withdrawal of Mr. Getchell's nomination, the President has another c… Continue Reading


“Oversight Of The Justice For All Act: Has The Justice Department Effectively Administered The Bloodsworth And Coverdell DNA Grant Programs?”

In 2000, I introduced the Innocence Protection Act , which aimed to improve the administration of justice by ensuring that defendants in the most serious cases have access to counsel and, where appropriate, access to post-conviction DNA testing necessary to prove their innocence in those cases where the system got it grievously wrong. As a former prosecutor, I saw both sides of the crisis that DNA testing had illuminated in clearing those wrongful… Continue Reading


DHS Secretary Chertoff’s Insistence On Demanding Birth Certificates At The Northern Border Beginning Feb. 1

[Department of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff today (Thursday, Jan. 17) responded to a Dec. 19 letter from Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). Leahy had asked for the legal and practical justification for DHS's decision to require birth certificates at the Northern Border beginning Feb.1, at least 17 months before a newly enacted law allows implementation of the land-crossing phases of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI). … Continue Reading

Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 32 Page 33 Page 34 Page 35 Page 36 Page 37 Page 38 Page 39 Page 40 Page 41 Page 42 Page 43 Page 44 Page 45 Page 46 Page 47 Page 48 Page 49 Page 50 Page 51 Page 52 Page 53 Page 54 Page 55 Page 56 Page 57 Page 58 Page 59 Page 60 Page 61 Page 62 Page 63 Page 64 Page 65 Page 66 Page 67 Page 68 Page 69 Page 70 Page 71 Page 72 Page 73 Page 74 Page 75 Page 76 Page 77 Page 78 Page 79 Page 80 Page 81 Page 82 Page 83 Page 84 Page 85 Page 86 Page 87 Page 88 Page 89 Page 90 Page 91 Page 92 Page 93 Page 94 Page 95 Page 96 Page 97 Page 98 Page 99 Page 100 Page 101 Page 102 Page 103 Page 104 Page 105 Page 106 Page 107 Page 108 Page 109 Page 110 Page 111 Page 112 Page 113 Page 114 Page 115 Page 116 Page 117 Page 118 Page 119 Page 120 Page 121 Page 122 Page 123 Page 124 Page 125 Page 126 Page 127 Page 128 Page 129 Page 130 Page 131 Page 132 Page 133 Page 134 Page 135 Page 136 Page 137 Page 138 Page 139 Page 140 Page 141 Page 142 Page 143 Page 144 Page 145 Page 146 Page 147 Page 148 Page 149 Page 150 Page 151 Page 152 Page 153 Page 154 Page 155 Page 156 Page 157 Page 158 Page 159 Page 160 Page 161 Page 162 Page 163 Page 164 Page 165 Page 166 Page 167 Page 168 Page 169 Page 170 Page 171 Page 172 Page 173 Page 174 Page 175 Page 176 Page 177 Page 178 Page 179 Page 180 Page 181 Page 182 Page 183 Page 184 Page 185 Page 186 Page 187 Page 188 Page 189 Page 190 Page 191 Page 192 Page 193 Page 194 Page 195 Page 196 Page 197 Page 198 Page 199 Page 200 Page 201 Page 202 Page 203 Page 204 Page 205 Page 206 Page 207 Page 208 Page 209 Page 210 Page 211 Page 212 Page 213 Page 214 Page 215 Page 216 Page 217 Page 218 Page 219 Page 220 Page 221 Page 222 Page 223 Page 224 Page 225 Page 226 Page 227 Page 228 Page 229 Page 230 Page 231 Page 232 Page 233 Page 234 Page 235 Page 236 Page 237 Page 238 Page 239 Page 240 Page 241 Page 242 Page 243 Page 244 Page 245 Page 246 Page 247 Page 248 Page 249 Page 250 Page 251 Page 252 Page 253 Page 254 Page 255 Page 256 Page 257 Page 258 Page 259 Page 260 Page 261 Page 262 Page 263 Page 264 Page 265 Page 266 Page 267 Page 268 Page 269 Page 270 Page 271 Page 272 Page 273 Page 274 Page 275 Page 276 Page 277 Page 278 Page 279 Page 280 Page 281 Page 282 Page 283 Page 284 Page 285 Page 286 Page 287 Page 288 Page 289 Page 290
Showing page   of 290