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

04.27.16

Remarks of Senator Patrick Leahy On Continuing Education for the Federal Workforce Through the truED Program at Champlain College U.S. Office of Personnel Management, Alan Campbell Auditorium

Thank you, Acting Director Colbert, for your warm introduction, and to President Laackman for inviting me here today. I am pleased to see here many leaders and professionals who have dedicated their lives to public service, and who are committed to meeting the critical talent and development needs of the federal workforce. Like many of you, I have spent my career in public service, and during that time I have also experienced the revolution in access to information. And while that is for t… Continue Reading


04.26.16

Leahy, Sanders and Welch Joint Statement On Rutland Vermont Welcoming 100 Syrian Refugees

"We are proud that the State of Vermont and the City of Rutland are welcoming civilian refugees who have fled the relentless violence in Syria, sometimes with just the clothes on their backs. We appreciate the leadership of Mayor Louras and Rutland's business and community leaders who are not only doing the right thing by helping those in need but also making it clear that it is good for the region to welcome hardworking newcomers into the community. Struggling families, fleeing peril and motiv… Continue Reading


04.26.16

Comment of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, On the Federal District Court Decision Upholding North Carolina’s Restrictive Voting Law

[On Monday, the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina upheld North Carolina's sweeping voting law, which the State enacted following the Supreme Court's 2013 decision in Shelby County v. Holder, which weakened the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965. North Carolina's restrictive voting law includes a strict photo ID requirement, reduces the number of days for early voting, eliminates same-day registration and voting, prohibits citizens from casting ballots outside their pr… Continue Reading


04.26.16

Senate Republicans Continue Blocking Consensus Judicial Nominees

(Tuesday, April 26, 2016) - Senate Republicans, who are refusing to hold a hearing and a vote for Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland, are also refusing to vote on 20 lower court nominees who are waiting to serve on courts around the country. On Tuesday, Republicans blocked the confirmation of 11 federal district court nominees-including nominees with Republican support. "There is no good reason that judicial nominees praised by Republican Senators should be blocked by Republican leadership… Continue Reading


04.26.16

In Remarks At Kennedy Institute Event, Leahy Calls On Republicans To Restore Senate Tradition And Consider SCOTUS Nominee

(Tuesday, April 26, 2016) - Speaking at an event hosted by the Kennedy Institute Tuesday, Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) called for a return to Senate tradition when it comes to considering Supreme Court nominees. Leahy noted that during the entire 47-year career of the late Senator Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.), and going back to 1916, no pending Supreme Court nominee has been denied a hearing and a vote. Today, however, Senate Republicans are creating new history … Continue Reading


04.26.16

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, Remarks at the Edward M. Kennedy Institute Event: The U.S. Senate’s Role in Confirming Supreme Court Justices

Good morning. I thank the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for inviting me, and to Vicki for being with us today. The Kennedy name is synonymous with public service. Ted Kennedy dedicated his life to serving the people of Massachusetts and the people of America - especially the disempowered and disadvantaged. He was an inspiration to us all. These days, we certainly could use some more of Senator Kennedy's commitment to the Constitution. I hope this event will remind us what it means to be… Continue Reading


04.25.16

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Commemorating Earth Day

Last Friday marked the 46th annual Earth Day, and we cannot ignore that we are at a crossroads in time. Human-caused climate change is accelerating with each passing year, and is now taking a severe toll on our planet. We see it in our scorched farmlands and burnt forests in the West, and in the flood ravaged river valleys and super-storm battered coastlines in the East. Climate change is not a hoax and we must act now to protect our future and our future generations. Earth Day is an opportunit… Continue Reading


04.22.16

Paris Agreement Signing On Earth Day Honors The Meaning And The Goals Of Earth Day

(FRIDAY, April 22, 2016) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Representative Peter Welch (D-Vt.) this week joined 143 congressional colleagues in voicing strong support for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Paris Agreement ahead of its signing Friday by Secretary John Kerry. Under President Obama's leadership and with the strong support of congressional Democrats, the United States rallied more than one hundred nations in support of the historic agreement last De… Continue Reading


04.22.16

In Wake Of PFOA Contamination, Leahy, Sanders And Welch Call For Stricter Federal Regulations

(Friday, April 22, 2015) - As tests for perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) contaminating drinking water in North Bennington, Bennington and Pownal continue this week, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Representative Peter Welch (D-Vt.) pressed two congressional committees, charged with finalizing legislation to regulate toxic chemicals, for stricter federal rules and deference to strong state protections already in place in Vermont and across the country. The Vermont … Continue Reading


04.21.16

Cornyn, Leahy, Grassley, Franken, Hatch, Coons Introduce Bill to Aid Response Training to Active Shooters

U.S. Senators John Cornyn (R-TX), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Al Franken (D-MN), Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Chris Coons (D-DE) issued the following statements after introducing the Protecting Our Lives by Initiating COPS Expansion (POLICE) Act of 2016, which will allow law enforcement and medical personnel across the country to use federal grant funds to train and better prepare for active shooter situations, including training civilians how to respond if confronted by an active sho… Continue Reading


04.20.16

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Nomination Hearing of Dr. Carla Hayden to be Librarian of Congress

For a young student or a lifelong learner, a library can be an exciting place. I realized this at the age of four, when I received my first library card at the Kellogg-Hubbard Library in Montpelier, Vermont. Some of my fondest memories as a child were at the library, where everyone fit in and possibilities were limitless. Today, the Rules Committee considers the nomination of Dr. Carla Hayden to lead the Library of Congress, one of the largest libraries in the world. Dr. Hayden brings direc… Continue Reading


04.20.16

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, On Judicial Nominations

Today, this Committee is holding its first nominations hearing since January. Since that time, judicial vacancies have risen across the Nation and nominations to fill empty judgeships have piled up in this Committee. In addition to the five judicial nominees on this hearing, there are 27 other judicial nominees that are waiting for a hearing - including Chief Judge Garland to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court. If we followed the timing that the last 14 Supreme Court nominees received, we … Continue Reading


04.20.16

House Judiciary Committee Overwhelmingly Approves Leahy-Authored Bill To Reauthorize Lifesaving Bulletproof Vest Grant Program

(Wednesday, April 20, 2016) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) on Wednesday hailed the House Judiciary Committee for overwhelmingly approving his legislation to reauthorize the lifesaving Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant Program, a federal grant program whose charter has long been expired and needs to be renewed. Following the committee's action on Wednesday, Leahy called for the full House to quickly pass the bill so that it can be sent to the President for signature. The Senate passed the bip… Continue Reading


04.20.16

Comment of Senator Patrick Leahy On Senate Passage Of The Energy Policy Modernization Act

(WEDNESDAY, April 20, 2016) - The Senate Wednesday passed legislation in a vote of 85 to 12 to modernize U.S. energy policy, address emerging challenges from climate change to cyber threats, update the nation's energy infrastructure, and permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) voted for the Energy Policy Modernization Act, the first broad bipartisan energy legislation since 2007, which covers a wide array of issues from efficiency to in… Continue Reading


04.19.16

Vermont EPSCoR Wins $20 Million Award From National Science Foundation To Study and Promote Resiliency in Lake Champlain Basin

What makes some parts of the Lake Champlain basin and its watersheds resilient in the face of extreme weather events, increasingly common as climate change warms Vermont, while other parts fail to recover and rebound? A $20 million award from the National Science Foundation to Vermont EPSCoR will help answer that question, providing much needed information to decision-makers as they govern the basin and develop policies that reach far into the future. The award, one of the largest in Vermont… Continue Reading


04.19.16

On The Anniversary Of The Oklahoma City Bombing, Leahy Calls For The Senate To Come Together And Do The Work Of The American People

(Tuesday, April 19, 2016) - Today marks the 21st anniversary of the tragic Oklahoma City bombing that took the lives of 168 people, including 19 children. In the immediate aftermath of that tragedy, Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland supervised the team investigating and prosecuting the Oklahoma City bombing and drew praise from all sides for his work. Noting the important anniversary and Garland's critical work on the ground in Oklahoma City, Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Patri… Continue Reading


04.19.16

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, On the 21st Anniversary of the Oklahoma City Bombing

Today we remember the victims and families whose lives were forever changed by the bombing in Oklahoma City twenty-one years ago. That bombing shook our Nation to its core. It remains the worst act of home-grown terrorism our Nation has endured. The destruction and loss of life were overwhelming. This photograph, of a firefighter carrying the limp and bloodied body of a toddler from the wreckage, came to symbolize the horror of the attack. One hundred sixty-eight innocent lives perished tha… Continue Reading


04.15.16

Leahy Welcomes Vermont And Canadian Officials And Business Leaders To Mark Continued Progress On Preclearance Operations That Will Facilitate Air, Rail, Water And Land Travel Between Vermont And Canada, While Strengthening Security

ESSEX JUNCTION, Vt. (FRIDAY, April 15, 2016) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Friday joined Vermont and Canadian officials and business leaders in Essex Junction, Vt., to mark progress on facilitating travel and commerce between Vermont and Canada. Leahy, long an advocate for the return of the "Montrealer" rail line and easing air travel to Vermont from airports like Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, said legislation he introduced earlier this year would make important strides toward making th… Continue Reading


04.15.16

Leahy: Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Reauthorization Bill Further Delays Needed Rules And Does Not Go Far Enough To Protect Farmers And Small Businesses

(FRIDAY, April 15, 2016) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) - a leading member of the Senate Agriculture Committee and earlier a conferee on the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 - Thursday voted against the CFTC reauthorization bill, which the committee passed on a partisan vote. Leahy's amendment to strike unneeded FOIA exemptions, cosponsored by Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), was accepted as part of the Manager's Package to amend the bill, before passage. Foll… Continue Reading


04.14.16

Comments Of Senator Patrick Leahy On State And Federal EB-5 Enforcement Actions In Vermont

[Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) has worked to reform the EB-5 Regional Center program for years. His EB-5 amendment to Comprehensive Immigration Reform passed the Senate in 2013, but the House of Representatives failed to allow a vote on the bill. He also requested that the Government Accountability Office audit the program and pressed the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to do what it can to improve the program administratively. Then last year he co-authored a broad, bipartisan reform bi… Continue Reading

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