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Press Releases

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

03.12.19

Grassley, Leahy Press Trump Administration on EB-5 Regulations

U.S. Senators Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) are again calling on the Trump administration to finalize regulations reforming the EB-5 investor visa program, which has long been riddled with fraud and abuse. Grassley and Leahy have previously called for the administration to approve regulations addressing the program's flaws absent congressional action. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services recently submitted to the Office of Management and Budget for final approval a… Continue Reading


03.11.19

Senator Patrick Leahy's Sunshine Week Keynote Address At The National Archives

Thank you for that generous introduction, David. And thank you for the profoundly important work that you and your team do here at NARA. NARA is our nation's historian, and therefore, our nation's mirror as we look to challenges ahead. As we strive to live up to our Founders' ideals, NARA ensures we have the knowledge to learn from our mistakes and build upon our successes. Such "advancement and diffusion of knowledge," James Madison observed, "is the only guardian of true liberty." Sunshine… Continue Reading


03.11.19

Statement Of Senate Appropriations Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy On President Trump's Budget Proposal

For the third year in a row, President Trump has sent a budget proposal that is dead on arrival and divorced from reality. It is not worth the paper it is printed on, and it will be rejected by Congress. Yet again, the President has proposed shortsighted cuts that would slash investments in infrastructure, medical research, and American families, cuts that have been rejected by Congress two fiscal years in a row. But now he relies on a budget gimmick, Overseas Contingency Operations funding … Continue Reading


03.07.19

Torres, McGovern, Cardin, Leahy Introduce Bicameral Bill to Impose Targeted Sanctions on Guatemalan Officials Who Undermine Justice

Today, U.S. Representatives Norma J. Torres (D-CA) and James P. McGovern (D-MA) and U.S. Senators Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT) introduced the Guatemala Rule of Law Accountability Act to authorize Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act sanctions against Guatemalan officials who have engaged in corruption, obstructed justice, misused U.S.-provided equipment, disobeyed Guatemalan Constitutional Court rulings, and interfered with the work of the U.S. government. In Guatemala,… Continue Reading


03.07.19

On the 12th Anniversary of Bob Levinson’s Captivity, Menendez, Colleagues Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Assist Americans Held Hostage or Unlawfully Detained Abroad

Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, lead a bipartisan group of Senate colleagues in introducing a bill today to improve the U.S. government's efforts to bring back Americans held hostage or unlawfully detained abroad. The Robert Levinson Hostage Recovery and Hostage-taking Accountability Act bolsters programs to address hostage-taking, and gives the United States government new tools to rescue hostages and punish their captors. The legislatio… Continue Reading


03.07.19

Leahy, Sanders And Welch Back Legislation To Restore Net Neutrality

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) joined House and Senate colleagues in introducing legislation to restore a free and open internet. The legislation would overturn a 2017 anti-consumer move by the Trump administration's Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that gutted net neutrality protections enacted by the Obama Administration. In a joint statement, Leahy, Sanders, and Welch said: "A free and open internet is essential to our economy, a f… Continue Reading


03.06.19

Senate Floor Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Judicial Nominations

Judiciary Committee - I again feel compelled to warn about the destruction of the long held norms and traditions that have protected the Senate's unique constitutional role with respect to lifetime judicial appointments. Until recently, members of this body knew well that they would have a say when it comes to who will sit on federal courts in their home states. Blue slips protected the prerogatives of home-state senators and gave meaning to the constitutional requirement of "advice and consen… Continue Reading


03.06.19

Leahy And Other Senators Welcome As ‘A Breakthrough’ A Judicial Conference Warning To Judges, Clerks, Against Partisan Training Programs

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Mazie Hirono (D-HI) Wednesday welcomed as a "breakthrough" an advisory opinion published by the Judicial Conference of the United States' Committee on Codes of Conduct that warns federal judges and their clerks against participating in events sponsored by anonymously funded partisan organizations. The guidance follows revelations that a Heritage Foundat… Continue Reading


03.06.19

Leahy Receives Award For Congressional Leadership In Public Diplomacy

U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont), Vice Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Tuesday night received the George Washington University Institute for Public Diplomacy and Global Communication's annual Walter Roberts Award for Congressional Leadership in Public Diplomacy at a ceremony on Capitol Hill. IPDGC also announced a grant from the Walter Roberts Endowment to the Vermont Council on World Affairs to enhance international youth leadership exchanges. Assistant Secretary of State … Continue Reading


03.05.19

Leahy, Cummings, Grassley And Cornyn Raise Concerns About The Interior Department's Proposed Rule That Would Weaken FOIA

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Vice Chairman of the Senate Committee on Appropriations, on Tuesday joined Representative Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), Chairman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Finance, and Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas), member of the Senate Committee on the Judiciary, in sending a letter to Acting Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) David Bernhardt expressing serious concerns with a pr… Continue Reading


03.04.19

Senate Floor Address Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Third Anniversary Of The Murder Of Berta Caceres

Mr. LEAHY. Three years ago yesterday, Berta Caceres, an indigenous rights activist in Honduras who had been a vocal opponent of the construction of a hydroelectric dam that threatened the territory of the Lenka people, was murdered in her home. That cowardly crime, about which I have spoken many times, was the culmination of years of harassment and threats against her life, and it was by no means an isolated case. At the time, it was only the latest of scores of assassinations of social acti… Continue Reading


02.28.19

Senate Floor Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy On Women's Empowerment And Trafficking In Persons

Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, the White House recently unveiled the Women's Global Development and Prosperity Initiative (W-GDP), an interagency plan to increase women's global labor force participation and advancement in the workplace, improve access of women entrepreneurs to market opportunities, and remove barriers to economic growth for women. I support the initiative, although not based on the erroneous claim of some in the White House that it is the first women's initiative ever launched by … Continue Reading


02.28.19

Senate Floor Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Situation In Egypt

Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, I want to briefly discuss the situation in Egypt, a country where unchecked repression has come to define the government of President el-Sisi. The 2011 Egyptian revolution brought hope of a democratic future for the country, but it has failed to materialize, subverted by aspiring autocrats. After winning historic democratic elections in 2012, the Morsi government sought to consolidate its control, issuing a declaration to provide the President with sweeping authorit… Continue Reading


02.28.19

As Venezuela’s Humanitarian Situation Worsens, Bipartisan Group of Senators Introduce TPS Legislation to Support Venezuelans Fleeing Maduro Regime

Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations, was joined Thursday by Senators Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), and Cory Booker (D-N.J.) in introducing the Venezuela Temporary Protected Status Act of 2019, a bill to immediately grant Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for eligible Venezuelans fleeing the dire conditions in their home country and to strengthen migration systems in the countries surrounding Venezuela. "The scale of … Continue Reading


02.28.19

Leahy Leads Eight Senators In Reintroducing Reforms To Restore The Rights Of Americans Deprived Of Justice By Forced Arbitration

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) on Thursday reintroduced his legislation to restore the rights of Americans who are forced into forced arbitration in civil rights cases, sexual harassment claims, employment disputes and other legal cases. Forced arbitration clauses are often included in contracts that Americans must sign for employment, a bank account or credit card, or myriad other everyday activities, precluding them from seeking remedies in court. The Restoring Statutory Rights Act would ensu… Continue Reading


02.28.19

Senate Floor Address Of Appropriations Vice Chair Senator Patrick Leahy On The Need To Reach A New Two-Year Budget Agreement

While it was only two short weeks ago that we finished the Fiscal Year 2019 Appropriations bills, there is no rest for the weary on the Senate Appropriations Committee. I come to the Floor today to talk about the need to reach a new two-year budget deal so that the Appropriations Committee can begin its work in earnest on the Fiscal Year 2020 bills. Unless we get a budget deal, sequestration returns in Fiscal Year 2020, necessitating steep cuts in programs that invest in America and support… Continue Reading


02.28.19

Statement Of Appropriations Vice Chair Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) At The Appropriations Committee Hearing On The Opioid Epidemic

Thank you Chairman Blunt and Ranking Member Murray for convening today's hearing to learn more about how states are working to combat opioid addiction. The opioid epidemic is the health crisis of our time. Every community and every family has been touched in some way by this tragic loss of life or the struggle of addiction. An epidemic of this scale must be met with bold new ideas and the resources to back them up. Vermont, like other states, is not immune to the scourge of opioid addiction.… Continue Reading


02.27.19

Address Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Urgent Call For Real Action On Climate Change

More than 30 years ago, when cooperation and bipartisanship were a hallmark of the United States Senate, a bipartisan group of Senators sounded the alarm about climate change. They made a modest request of the Office of Technology Assessment: study the issue of climate change, and make recommendations to avert global disaster. Those Senators were concerned that human activity might directly cause permanent, destructive, and widespread changes to our planet's climate system -- changes that would … Continue Reading


02.26.19

Leahy Leads 46 Senators In Introducing The Voting Rights Advancement Act Of 2019 To Restore & Strengthen The Landmark Voting Rights Act

Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), a leading member and former chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, led 46 senators Tuesday in introducing the Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2019, alongside Congresswoman Terri Sewell (D-Ala.), who led more than 200 House members in introducing companion legislation in the House of Representatives. In 2013, the Supreme Court's Shelby County v. Holder decision gutted Section 5 of the landmark Voting Rights Act, consequently crippling the federal governmen… Continue Reading


02.26.19

Senate Floor Address Of Senate Appropriations Vice Chair Patrick Leahy On President Trump’s Declaration Of A National Emergency

When President Trump declared a national emergency two weeks ago in order to build his pet project - and in the process declared his intent to siphon billions of dollars that Congress had appropriated for our men and women in uniform- I am not sure which lawyers he consulted, but those lawyers seemed to overlook our nation's founding document, the United States Constitution. I know the President likes to communicate in 280 characters or less, so I'll point him to a 77 character phrase he may wa… Continue Reading

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