Press Room

Press Releases

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

02.09.22

DeLauro And Leahy Announce Bipartisan Appropriations Framework

House Appropriations Committee Chair Rosa DeLauro (D-CT-03) and Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) today announced that bipartisan, bicameral negotiators have agreed on a framework for fiscal year 2022 appropriations. Chair DeLauro said: "I am pleased that we have reached agreement on a framework, which will allow our subcommittees to get to work finalizing an omnibus. We will now proceed with great intensity to enact legislation making transformative investments to … Continue Reading


02.08.22

Chairman Leahy Comment On The Continuing Resolution

I am glad that the House acted quickly to pass a continuing resolution to fund the government through March 11th, and I encourage my colleagues in the Senate to take it up and pass it. Over the last several weeks, Chair DeLauro, Vice Chairman Shelby, Ranking Member Granger and I have made real progress on reaching a full year funding agreement. I believe this continuing resolution will provide us with the time we need to finish our bipartisan work while removing the unnecessary threat of gove… Continue Reading


02.07.22

60 Years On, The Economic Embargo On Cuba Is An Abject Failure

Mr. LEAHY. Today, February 7, 2022, marks the sixtieth anniversary of the day the United States economic embargo against Cuba first went into effect. Sixty years. Three generations, twelve presidents, sixty sessions of Congress, and six transformational decades ago, dating back to the middle of the Cold War. The goal of the embargo, which has been expanded multiple times, was unmistakable: to depose the Cuban Government by imposing a vast web of punitive sanctions designed to crush the Cub… Continue Reading


02.04.22

Comment Urging President Biden To Commute Leonard Peltier’s Sentence

I urge President Biden to commute Leonard Peltier's prison sentence and release him from federal prison. Peltier, a prominent Native American activist, was imprisoned for crimes he and many other legal experts and advocates maintain he never committed. His trial was so riddled with flaws that even one of the prosecutors trying him has acknowledged that Peltier was wrongfully convicted. Peltier, now 77 years old and ailing with multiple health problems, has served more than 44 years in federal … Continue Reading


02.03.22

Leahy Announces $3.9 Million In USDA Funding To Strengthen Vermont Businesses, Organizations

(THURSDAY, Feb. 3, 2022) - U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Thursday announced the awarding of more than $3.9 million in USDA loans and grants to 22 Vermont farms, businesses and organizations. Leahy, who is the Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, said: "These awards will help to strengthen not only local businesses, but our rural communities. Some recipients, such as Maple Wind Farm, will use this funding to expand into new markets, while others will be able to make needed capita… Continue Reading


01.31.22

Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy On South Sudan

Mr. LEAHY. On January 6, 2022, I made a statement about the extreme hardships and insecurity that are a daily reality for the people of South Sudan, despite independence ten years ago that held so much promise and hope for that country. That independence came as a result of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement, which took years of negotiations facilitated by the United States, Norway, and the United Kingdom, and it provided a roadmap for political stability, economic development, respect for huma… Continue Reading


01.27.22

Leahy, Sanders And Welch: 6 VT Arts Organizations Will Net Total Of $500,000 In Funding From The American Rescue Plan

(THURSDAY, Jan. 27, 2022) -- Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Representative Peter Welch (D-Vt.) announced Thursday that six Vermont arts organizations will be receiving a combined $500,000 in funding through the federal American Rescue Plan Act. In a joint statement, Leahy, Sanders and Welch said: "The arts was one of the hardest hit sectors in the country as the pandemic shuttered performance spaces and galleries. In Vermont, which has some the highest parti… Continue Reading


01.26.22

Comment On The Retirement Of Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer

Justice Breyer, confirmed to the Supreme Court in 1994, will leave behind a rich legacy when he retires. He has been one of the Supreme Court's finest unifiers, routinely forging consensus between differing viewpoints and legal philosophies on the Court. He believes deeply that the Supreme Court should not become mired in politics and has served as a beacon of judicial independence even amid increasingly partisan times. He will be remembered as a soft-spoken and studious and humble champion o… Continue Reading


01.20.22

Biden Appoints Vermont Farm Organization Veteran John Roberts, Recommended By Leahy, As Head Of The Farm Service Agency In Vermont

(THURSDAY, Jan. 20, 2022) - President Biden Thursday announced that he is appointing John Roberts as Executive Director of the Farm Service Agency (FSA) in Vermont. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) had recommended Roberts for the position. Leahy said he was pleased by the appointment: "I've known John for many years. He has the qualifications and experience to lead the Farm Service Agency at a critical time for our state when there is much to be done. As with other areas of the economy, the pande… Continue Reading


01.20.22

Findings By Researchers At The Universities Of Vermont And Maine Spotlight Pandemic-Related Health Issues

(THURSDAY, Jan. 20, 2022) -- Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) credits researchers at the University of Vermont and the University of Maine for highlighting the health challenges faced by residents of both states during the pandemic. Of particular concern to Leahy has been the negative impact the pandemic has had on those who were already food insecure. Leahy, who chairs the Senate Appropriations Committee, said: "This work helps us to understand what impact the pandemic has had on people's health … Continue Reading


01.18.22

How To Order A COVID Test

Vermonters can now order four free COVID-19 antigen tests per household from the federal government. To access the program, follow these simple steps: 1) Visit: https://special.usps.com/testkits 2) Fill out your contact information and shipping address 3) Receive your tests through the mail in one to two weeks Vermonters have stepped forward to test themselves and their families for COVID-19 in the face of the Omicron surge. Testing is a critical tool to protecting our health and h… Continue Reading


01.13.22

Leahy, DeLauro Statement On Appropriations Meeting

Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and House Appropriations Committee Chair Rosa DeLauro (D-CT-03) released the following statement on today's bicameral, bipartisan meeting of Appropriations Committee leadership: "We appreciated the opportunity to have a constructive Four Corners conversation today on completing fiscal year 2022 appropriations. We look forward to further conversations in the coming days, with the shared goal of finishing our work by the February 18 go… Continue Reading


01.10.22

Remarks On The Urgent Need To Pass Voting Rights Legislation

Last week I spoke on the Floor reflecting on the unthinkable events of January 6th, 2021, when a violent mob attempted to snuff out one our democracy's most sacred traditions: the peaceful transition of power. That mob's attack on our nation's Capitol was fueled by the former president's "big lie," the utterly false alternate reality that Joe Biden stole the 2020 election through widespread fraud. But the January 6th insurrection, as nightmarish as it was, was not the only thing spawned by the … Continue Reading


01.08.22

VAAFM Announces Vermont ‘Pay-For-Performance’ Agricultural Phosphorus Reduction Program Now Taking Applications

MONTPELIER (Saturday, January 8, 2022) - The Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets (VAAFM) recently opened applications for the new Vermont Pay for Phosphorus (VPFP) program, one of the first of its kind in the United States. VAAFM received a $7 million grant award from the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in September of 2020, enabling the Agency to launch a statewide Vermont Pay for Phosphorus (VPFP) Program to further expand and support agriculture's role in deli… Continue Reading


01.06.22

Statement On South Sudan

Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, several months ago I spoke of the hope we all felt that after decades of civil war, famine, and political turmoil, after millions were killed and millions more became refugees including thousands of "lost boys" and "lost girls", South Sudan's independence and a peace agreement would be the beginning of a period of lasting stability and progress. Regrettably, what has unfolded since then is the antithesis of stability or progress. The past decade has been plagued by c… Continue Reading


01.06.22

Remarks On The Anniversary Of The Jan. 6 Attack On The Capitol

These are among the most somber and sorrowful remarks that I have had to make as President Pro Tempore and in my several decades of service in this body. What an unthinkable event it is that we are marking today. An attempted coup incited not against a president, but by a president, who promoted and still promotes a litany of lies, to overturn the results of an election in order for him to hold on to power that he no longer possesses. We are in the business of words, but there are none to ad… Continue Reading


12.28.21

Comments On The Passing Of Former Majority Leader Harry Reid

Harry Reid was a warm and caring soul and Marcelle and I were grateful to know Harry and Landra as friends. He was one of a kind, a nugget of pure gold at the center and a little rough around the edges. His unlikely journey from the tiny and remote Nevada hamlet of Searchlight was the story of a fighter for ordinary Americans who was drawn to public service and politics for all the right reasons. ###… Continue Reading


12.23.21

Sanders, Leahy, Welch Send Letter To DeJoy On Mail Delays And Issues At White River Junction Facility

Burlington Vt., Dec. 23 - Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) on Thursday sent a letter to Postmaster General Louis DeJoy demanding action to address the postal issues across Vermont, including the immediate installation of a functioning cancellation machine at the White River Junction mail processing facility. "We write with great concern about the Postal Service's continued failure to meet its own standards of service," Sanders, Leahy and Welch wro… Continue Reading


12.20.21

Leahy Urges Supreme Court To Take Up Case With Major Implications For The U.S. Patent System

(MONDAY, Dec. 20, 2021) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chair of the Senate's Intellectual Property Subcommittee, part of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and Congressman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) Ranking Member of the House Intellectual Property Subcommittee, Monday filed an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to hear a case with major implications for the American patent system. Their official brief explains how a key post-grant review process at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) - c… Continue Reading


12.20.21

Leahy And USDA Announce Conservation Program Improvements Which Will Benefit Participating Vermont Farmers

(MONDAY, Dec. 20, 2021)- U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Monday announced changes to USDA conservation programs which will make the programs work better for Vermont farmers and landowners. Participants in the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) will now have more flexibility in how they meet a required 50 percent match, making it easier for landowners to conserve land through the program. The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) helps farmers implement clean water practices, such a… Continue Reading

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