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Press Releases

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

06.09.16

Senator Leahy Speaks In Support Of The Reed Amendment To The Defense Authorization Bill, Providing An Additional $18 Billion In Non-Defense Spending, To Match Additional $18 Billion In Defense Spending Under The McCain Amendment

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy On Reed Second Degree Amendment to the McCain Amendment To the National Defense Authorization Act June 8, 2016 Mr. President, Senator McCain, the Chairman of the Armed Services Committee, believes that $602 billion is not enough for the Department of Defense. Rather than reject unnecessary spending for weapons and other programs the Pentagon says it does not want or need, the Senator from Arizona not only says we should fund them, he also proposes to spend a… Continue Reading


06.09.16

Senate Committee OKs Bill Co-Authored By Leahy To Augment Small Business Administration Programs For Members of the National Guard and Reserves

Senate Committee OKs Bill Co-Authored By LeahyTo Augment Small Business Administration ProgramsFor Members of the National Guard and Reserves . . . The National Guard and Reserve Entrepreneurship Support Act improves access to SBA programs offering counseling, loan repayment and emergency assistance . . . Bill also directs SBA to work with National Guard and State Adjutants General to improve outreach and generate awareness of programs WASHINGTON (THURSDAY, June 9, 2016) - A U.S. Senate commi… Continue Reading


06.09.16

Leahy’s Amendment To Improve Program That Supports Fallen and Injured First Responders Clears Committee

Leahy's Amendment To Improve Program That Supports Fallen and Injured First RespondersClears Committee . . . Reforms Will Ensure That the Families of Police Officers and First Responders Don't Lose Critical Benefits Due To Bureaucratic Processing Delays WASHINGTON (THURSDAY, June 9, 2016) - Efforts by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to strengthen the Public Safety Officers' Benefits program for officers and their families won unanimous support in the Judiciary Committee Thursday. The PSOB was f… Continue Reading


06.08.16

Leahy: The Federal Judiciary Cannot Be Treated Like An Election Year Pawn

Leahy: The Federal Judiciary Cannot Be Treated Like An Election Year Pawn "If the Republican leaders of this body want to distinguish themselves from the rhetoric of the campaign trail, they need to change course here in the Senate. Actions speak louder than words." WASHINGTON (WEDNESDAY, June 8, 2016) - The attack on a federal judge by the Republican Party's presumptive presidential nominee is just the latest example of GOP obstruction to the independent federal judiciary, Judiciary Committee… Continue Reading


06.08.16

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, On Partisan Attacks of the Independent Judiciary

Many Senators have appropriately condemned the racist comments recently made by the Republican Party's presumptive presidential nominee about Judge Curiel. And sadly, his baseless allegations come as no surprise - as we have seen for months that personal insults are the calling card of the Republican standard bearer. But anyone seeking the highest office in this great nation must understand the fundamental role that judges play in our democracy. The rule of law protects all of us, but only when … Continue Reading


06.07.16

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Restoring the Purpose of the CDMRP in the NDAA

In this promising time, there are no resources too great to contribute to groundbreaking medical research. Key discoveries, new technologies and techniques, and tremendous leaps in our knowledge and understanding about disease and human health, are being made every day. Biomedical research conducted by the Defense Department has been a critical tool in combatting rare diseases here in the United States and across the world. Since 1992, the Department of Defense's Congressionally Directed Medica… Continue Reading


06.07.16

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, Hearing on “Deadly Synthetic Drugs: The Need to Stay Ahead of the Poison Peddlers”

Synthetic designer drugs present a significant challenge to our communities. For years, law enforcement officials have struggled to stay a step ahead of the criminals who produce synthetic marijuana and bath salts - chemical cocktails that can have unknown and often devastating consequences. The criminals who manufacture these synthetic drugs are constantly modifying the formula in order to produce technically new drugs that are not included in our criminal code, making it exceedingly more diffi… Continue Reading


06.06.16

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, On Partisan Attacks Of The Federal Judiciary

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.),Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, On Partisan Attacks Of The Federal Judiciary June 6, 2016 "Last week, the Republican Party's presidential nominee made the outrageous and baseless accusation of bias against a Federal judge, based on his ethnic heritage. Anyone who cares about our independent Federal judiciary should be deeply troubled by these dangerous comments, which threaten to undermine the legitimacy of our justice system and of any judg… Continue Reading


06.03.16

Leahy And Vermont Law Enforcement Leaders Herald The Importance To Vermont Of Leahy’s Newly Renewed Bulletproof Vest Program

BURLINGTON, Vt. - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), joined by leaders from Vermont law enforcement organizations, on Friday heralded the importance to Vermont of the renewal two weeks ago of Leahy's Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant Program. President Obama signed the Leahy bill into law on May 16, capping years of work by Leahy to renew the program's earlier charter after it expired in 2012. Since 1999, the matching grant program has leveraged $412 million in federal funds to help purchase mor… Continue Reading


06.02.16

Leahy, On Justice In Honduras, And The U.S. Contribution To The Support Mission Against Corruption And Impunity In Honduras (MACCIH)

Following is the reaction of Senator Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., ranking member, State Department and Foreign Operations Subcommittee of the Senate Appropriations Committee, to the announcement that the U.S. Government will contribute $5.2 million as an initial contribution to the Support Mission against Corruption and Impunity in Honduras (MACCIH): "This is an important first step in putting MACCIH on a solid financial footing. It is also a strong endorsement of MACCIH's director, Juan Jimenez Mayo… Continue Reading


06.01.16

Leahy Joins Democratic Senators In Calling On U.S. Soccer Federation To Provide Equal Pay For Women Athletes

(WEDNESDAY, June 1, 2016) - Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy (D) Wednesday joined with leading Democratic senators in calling for equal treatment including equal pay for women athletes. In a letter to Sunil Gulati, president of the U.S. Soccer Federation, Leahy and 30 Democratic Senators note that the U.S. Women's National Team "has been a source of tremendous national pride," inspiring young and experienced athletes alike. Yet according to an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) compla… Continue Reading


05.27.16

Leahy Joins Legislation To Improve Safety Of Rail Transport Of Oil And Petroleum Products

(FRIDAY, May 27, 2016) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) cosponsored legislation to improve the safety of rail transport of oil and petroleum products, creating critical protections for human life and the environment across the country. Leahy joined the legislation as concerns about the oil being transported along the shores of Lake Champlain, and the threat it may pose to the lake and to area residents, grow in Vermont. The Hazardous Materials Rail Transportation Safety Improvement Act of 2015… Continue Reading


05.27.16

Senate Passes Leahy Bill To Encourage The Humanitarian Work Of American Innovators

(Friday, May 27, 2016) - The Senate this week passed legislation introduced by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to encourage and reward the use of patented technology to address humanitarian needs. The Patents for Humanity Program Improvement Act, which Leahy has championed for several years, supports an award program at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office that recognizes patent holders who use their technology to improve the health and quality of life in impoverished nations. The legislation i… Continue Reading


05.27.16

Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, On Senate Passage of the Patents for Humanity Program Improvement Act, S.1402

Today, the Senate passed legislation to strengthen an important humanitarian innovation prize created by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO). Since 2012, the Patents for Humanity Award has recognized selected patent holders who use their inventions to address humanitarian needs. The legislation the Senate passed today will strengthen the award program and encourage innovators to continue using their work for humanitarian goals. The innovations that are recognized by the Patents for Hum… Continue Reading


05.26.16

Leahy, Co-Chair Of Senate’s National Guard Caucus, Joins Senator Shaheen In Introducing Legislation to Assist Small Businesses Led By National Guard and Reservists

(THURSDAY, May 26, 2016) -- U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), lead Democrat of the Senate Committee on Small Business & Entrepreneurship, Thursday introduced legislation to improve access to Small Business Administration (SBA) programs for members of the National Guard and Reserves. The Military Reservists Economic Injury Disaster Loan (MREIDL), a direct loan program that provides emergency assistance to Guard/Reserve entrepreneurs experiencing hardship due to deployment, and Repayment Def… Continue Reading


05.26.16

Key Senate Panel Clears Bill With Leahy-Led Provisions To Expedite U.S.-Canada Travel And Commerce

(THURSDAY, May 26, 2016) - The U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee Thursday approved an annual spending bill for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and with it key provisions authored by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) to increase national security and facilitate travel and commerce between the United States and Canada. Preclearance arrangements are especially important to Vermont, which hopes to restore "Montrealer" passenger train service linking Vermont to Canada in the coming years, … Continue Reading


05.25.16

Technology Companies & Privacy Advocates Urge Senate Judiciary Committee To Support Digital

(Wednesday, May 25, 2016) - One month after the House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly in favor of bipartisan legislation to protect the texts, photographs and other information Americans store in the cloud, technology companies and privacy advocates are urging the Senate Judiciary Committee to quickly take up and pass the House-passed bill so that it can become law. The measure, to update the three-decade-old Electronic Communications Privacy Act, would ensure that Americans' online … Continue Reading


05.25.16

If Republicans Followed Bipartisan History, Senate Would Be Confirming Supreme Court Nominee TODAY

(Wednesday, May 25, 2016) - The Senate should be voting today to confirm Chief Judge Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court, based on recent timelines for considering Supreme Court nominees. Instead, Senate Republicans have refused to even give Garland a hearing. For more than 40 years, the Senate has held a confirmation vote on Supreme Court nominees on average 70 days after their formal nomination. As of today, Garland has been pending for 70 days. But instead of scheduling a hearing and a … Continue Reading


05.25.16

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

Nearly 150 years ago, Congress determined that a fully functioning Supreme Court should consist of nine justices. For more than one hundred days, however, the Supreme Court has been unable to operate at full strength as a result of unprecedented obstruction by Senate Republicans. Under Republican leadership, the Senate is on track to be in session for the fewest days since 1956. Senate Republicans simply refuse to do their jobs. And if Senate Republican leadership has its way, this seat on t… Continue Reading


05.23.16

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, On the Adam Walsh Reauthorization Act of 2016

Soon the Senate will vote on legislation to reauthorize key elements of the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act. I supported this important law when it was first enacted nearly 10 years ago, and I am proud to be a cosponsor of this reauthorization bill. Both the original legislation and the reauthorization bill we are voting on today bear the name of Adam Walsh, a young boy who was abducted and murdered nearly 35 years ago. Since that tragic day, Adam's father, John, has been a determ… Continue Reading

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