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Press Releases

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

06.12.17

Leahy, Shaheen Request AG Sessions Appear Before The Appropriations Committee

Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy and Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies Subcommittee Ranking Member Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) Monday released a letter to Senator Cochran, Chairman of the Appropriations Committee, and Senator Shelby, Chairman of the Subcommittee of Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies, asking that the hearing on the FY2018 budget request for the Department of Justice be postponed until Attorney General Sessions is available to atte… Continue Reading


06.09.17

Leahy And Local Vermont Leaders In Education Lead Charge Against Trump Education Cuts

Senator Patrick Leahy Friday joined community leaders to decry the "unconscionable" $9 billion in cuts that President Trump would slash from the U.S. Department of Education. The cuts have been panned from Washington to Winooski for dealing a devastating blow to families' to access quality education, from pre-K to college and the programs in between, for working families and the nation's most vulnerable people. Leahy, the Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, said: "The best w… Continue Reading


06.08.17

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) On Former FBI Director James Comey, And Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ Testimony Next Week

[Following is the comment of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) on Attorney General Sessions' scheduled testimony next week, on Tuesday, before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice and Science. Leahy is the Vice Chairman of the Appropriations Committee and a leading member of the Judiciary Committee.] "I have sought for months to clarify Attorney General Sessions' contacts with Russian officials following his false testimony in response to questions from me and from Senator F… Continue Reading


06.08.17

Leahy Statement On Hearing To Review The President's FY 18 Funding Request For The U.S. Department Of Commerce

Secretary Ross, thank you for being here today. We have many issues to discuss, not the least of which is the topic of today's hearing - the President's budget proposal for the Department of Commerce. The request for the Department cuts nearly $1.5 billion, or 16 percent, from the FY 2017 enacted appropriations level, eviscerating popular grant, research, and state-based programs; cutting next-generation weather satellites; and failing to sufficiently invest in the 2020 Census. The administra… Continue Reading


06.07.17

Statement Of Appropriations Vice Chair Leahy At Appropriations Hg. On HUD Budget, With Witness Secy. Ben Carson

Thank you, Chairman Collins and Ranking Member Reed for holding this important hearing. I am very concerned about President Trump's budget for the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This budget would leave low-income, elderly and disabled Americans out in the cold. It would deny shelter to victims of domestic and sexual violence. It would bring to a screeching halt programs that spur economic development and help ensure that safe, sustainable and affordable housing is available in … Continue Reading


06.07.17

Leahy Joins Franken In Pressing AT&T On Its Pervasive Use Of Forced Arbitration Clauses In Consumer Contracts

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Wednesday joined Senator Al Franken (D-Minn.) and other senators in pressing AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson for answers about the company's widespread use of pre-dispute forced arbitration clauses in customer contracts that affect millions of consumers in Vermont and across the country. Leahy and Franken have partnered for several years in pressing for reforms to restore consumer rights by curbing the widespread use of mandatory arbitration clauses, which compel c… Continue Reading


06.07.17

Leahy Presses Tax Credit Incentives To Promote Safety And Conserve And Improve Historic Properties

Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy Wednesday introduced legislation to improve the safety and accessibility of historic buildings in Vermont and across the country. Modeled after Vermont's own Downtown and Village Center Tax Credit Program, the Historic Downtown Preservation and Access Act will establish tax incentives for building owners to install fire sprinklers and elevators in historic multi-use buildings. The bill introduction comes ahead of Thursday's annual Vermont Downtown and Historic Pr… Continue Reading


06.07.17

Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy Statement on the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee Hearing: “A Review of the FY18 Funding Request for the Army”

Thank you, Chairman Cochran and Ranking Member Durbin, for holding this hearing. Welcome General Milley, and Acting Secretary Speer. The mission of our Army today is unique. Ongoing conflicts around the world require our military to be ready, at any moment, to defend against threats to our national security, including the extremism and violence that undermine our core values. While today we will surely discuss the shortfalls the Army is facing, I think it is important to note the Army's succ… Continue Reading


06.07.17

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The President’s Twitter Announcement That He Will Nominate Christopher Wray To Be Director Of The FBI

"I am particularly interested in his ability to be independent and resist presidential pressure at a time when the White House has repeatedly tried to interfere with the FBI. And the Judiciary Committee must get to the bottom of that interference as part of evaluating Mr. Wray's nomination. "For obvious reasons that could not be clearer right now, Mr. Wray's ability, willingness and commitment to be independent of the White House and of presidential pressure is the threshold hurdle, and a car… Continue Reading


06.06.17

Appropriations Vice Chairman Leahy’s Remarks Today For A News Conference By Democratic Leaders On The President’s Infrastructure Proposals

Following are Senator Patrick Leahy's remarks for a news conference in the Capitol Tuesday with Senate Democratic leaders, on the President's infrastructure proposal. Leahy (D-Vt.) is the Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee. Leahy's statement follows: In this country we don't have Republican roads and bridges or Democratic roads and bridges. Crumbling infrastructure isn't a red state problem or a blue state problem. It's a nationwide problem. We need to invest in our water… Continue Reading


06.06.17

Leahy, Sanders and Welch Announce $656,000 in Forest Grants

Vermont's congressional delegation announced Tuesday that Williston and Richmond have received a combined $656,000 in U.S. Forest Service grants to create town forests. In a joint statement, Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) said, "We are pleased these federal funds will allow the towns of Williston and Richmond to conserve key tracts of forest, increase public access and improve recreational opportunities for local residents." The federal in… Continue Reading


06.06.17

Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy’s Opening Statement At Appropriations Hearing On The FY18 Budget, With Witness Education Secretary Betsy DeVos

Thank you, Chairman Blunt and Ranking Member Murray, for holding this hearing today to examine the President's fiscal year 2018 budget proposal for the Department of Education. I appreciate the opportunity to make a few brief opening remarks. Unfortunately, the President's proposed budget displays a fundamental lack of understanding of the role of government of, by, and for the people, in supporting the middle class, lifting up the most vulnerable among us, and serving our values and interests… Continue Reading


06.02.17

President Signs Bill To Strengthen Public Safety Officers’ Benefits Program, Including Three Improvements Authored By Senator Patrick Leahy

President Trump on Friday signed into law a bill to strengthen the Public Safety Officers' Benefits Program (PSOB), which includes three improvements authored by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). Leahy is a leading member of the Judiciary Committee, which handled the legislation, and the author of earlier PSOB improvements. Following are Leahy's remarks after the signing of the bill: "Our nation's law enforcement officers, firefighters and other first responders put their lives on the line every… Continue Reading


06.01.17

Reaction Of Senator Patrick Leahy To The President’s Decision On The Paris Climate Accords

"America gave its word to nearly 200 countries. America stays great when the world knows we'll keep our word. It doesn't make America great to break our word. "It would be a travesty to squander this moment of world unity, forged through U.S. leadership, and to undermine our early lead in building the new energy economy that promises millions of good jobs here at home. We are at our best when we work toward a common goal, and nearly every nation on Earth has agreed to do exactly that. The… Continue Reading


06.01.17

Leahy, Conyers, Lofgren Send Letter To Kushner Companies Asking About EB-5 Visas And Conflicts of Interest

Senator Patrick Leahy, Representative John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.), and Representative Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.) on Thursday pressed the president of Kushner Companies for answers on the company's use of EB-5 visas and its continued ties to Jared Kushner, President Trump's top advisor and son-in-law. At a time when Mr. Kushner is facing scrutiny over his contacts with Russian officials and his former company reportedly is facing financial trouble at its company headquarters and marquee building, th… Continue Reading


06.01.17

Leahy And Franken Release Their Earlier Letters To The FBI Requesting An Inquiry Into Attorney General Sessions’ Contacts With Russian Officials

[(THURSDAY, June 1, 2017) -- Following is the joint statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Senator Al Franken (D-Minn.) about their request to FBI Director Comey (and later to Acting Director McCabe) for an FBI inquiry into Attorney General Sessions' testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee and his contacts with Russian officials. Leahy and Franken, members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, had queried Sessions under oath about his Russian contacts during Sessions' confirmation … Continue Reading


06.01.17

Leahy, Sanders And Welch Announce $1.3 Million In Grants To Vermont Universities

The U.S. Department of Education has awarded more than $1.3 million in grants to Vermont universities, announced Thursday by Senator Patrick Leahy, Senator Bernie Sanders and Congressman Peter Welch. The grants, awarded through the Upward Bound program, will go to four Vermont institutes of higher education to prepare first-generation and low-income students for success in postsecondary education. Offered activities include career and college readiness counseling, connecting high school studen… Continue Reading


06.01.17

Leahy, Sanders and Welch Announce $700,000 In Brownfields Grants For Southern Vermont

Senator Patrick Leahy, Senator Bernie Sanders and Representative Peter Welch announced Thursday that three southern Vermont organizations will share a total of $700,000 in Brownfields Program assessment and cleanup grants from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Brownfields grants allow communities to assess and clean up contaminated properties to facilitate their redevelopment and reuse. In a joint statement, Leahy, Sanders and Welch said: "EPA Brownfield assessment and cleanup grants … Continue Reading


05.26.17

Reaction of Senator Patrick Leahy To The ABC News Report Of Photos And Videos Of Torture By Iraqi Forces Allied With The United States And Canada

"The photos are sickening. They clearly depict war crimes. That they were brazenly lauded by the unit's leader suggests that they were far from aberrations. It is my understanding that the United States no longer supports the Iraqi unit involved, but we should insist that the individuals responsible, and particularly the leaders, be prosecuted and appropriately punished. The fact that U.S. military personnel praised the Iraqi unit's cooperation is deeply disturbing and requires further inves… Continue Reading


05.26.17

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy On The President in Saudi Arabia

Mr. President, while the Office of Management and Budget was putting the finishing touches on its Orwellian-themed "A New Foundation for American Greatness," the President's fiscal year 2018 budget, which proposes to eliminate or drastically reduce funding for a vast array of critical programs on which the American people -- including the most vulnerable among us -- depend, the Trump family was being feted by one of the world's wealthiest and repressive regimes. Not only has the Saudi family us… Continue Reading

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