Press Room

Press Releases

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

03.16.15

Leahy: Lynch’s Historic Nomination Facing Historic Delay

(Monday, March 16, 2015) - The Senate Republicans' continued delay to consider the nomination of Loretta Lynch to serve as the next Attorney General of the United States has reached historic levels. As of tomorrow, Tuesday, her nomination will have languished on the floor longer than the five previous Attorney General nominees, combined. In a floor statement Monday, Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) criticized the deliberate and unnecessary delay of this historic nominati… Continue Reading


03.16.15

Leahy Hails U.S.-Canada Pre-Clearance Agreement That Brings Closer The Goal Of Restoring Vermont-To-Montreal Passenger Rail Service

(MONDAY, March 16, 2015) -- Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) says years of work on the goal of restoring passenger rail service between Vermont and Montreal took a major step forward Monday as the United States and Canada signed a long-awaited agreement designed to improve cross border travel and security between the two countries. U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson and Canadian Minister of Public Safety Steven Blaney signed a new pre-clearance agreement in Washington that was negotiate… Continue Reading


03.16.15

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, On the Senate Republicans’ Continued Delay in Considering the Nomination of Loretta Lynch to be Attorney General

"Loretta Lynch has been confirmed by the Senate twice before to serve as the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, where she has had an impeccable record for prosecuting terrorists and criminals. When she is finally confirmed to be the Attorney General of the United States, Loretta Lynch will be the first African American woman to serve as the country's chief law enforcement officer. Unfortunately, rather than move forward with this historic nomination, Senate Republicans appear i… Continue Reading


03.13.15

Anti-Trafficking Groups Call On Senate To Take Politics Out Of Debate & Pass Meaningful Legislation That Helps Victims

(Friday, March 13, 2015) - Organizations dedicated to providing vital services to victims of human trafficking are calling on Senate Republicans to cast partisan politics aside and pass meaningful legislation to address a critical issue affecting thousands of Americans. Many groups are also urging support for a trafficking alternative introduced by Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). The Leahy alternative, which is cosponsored by 23 Democratic Senators, provides a n… Continue Reading


03.12.15

Leahy Calls on Senate to Support Victims of Trafficking

(THURSDAY, March 12, 2015) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is leading an effort on the Senate floor to advance homeless and runaway youth remedies to combat human trafficking. In a floor speech Thursday, Leahy highlighted the work of Vermont service providers and urged lawmakers from both parties to come together behind his legislation to target traffickers and protect runaway and homeless youth. "The Executive Director of the Vermont Coalition of Runaway & Homeless Youth Programs wrote to… Continue Reading


03.12.15

Leahy & Democratic Senators Propose A Path Forward On Trafficking Legislation

(Thursday, March 12, 2015) - Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Thursday offered a noncontroversial, comprehensive solution to move forward on the stalled trafficking legislation and called on all Senators to support the effort. The substitute is cosponsored by 16 Democratic Senators. "The Senate has been on this trafficking bill now for three days -- but progress on the bill has been thwarted by the inclusion of a divisive provision that would limit the services av… Continue Reading


03.11.15

Anti-Trafficking Groups Call On Senate Republicans To Take Politics Out Of Policy Debate

(Wednesday, March 11, 2015) -Organizations dedicated to providing vital services to victims of human trafficking are calling on Senate Republicans to cast partisan politics aside and pass meaningful legislation to address a critical issue affecting thousands of Americans. At issue is controversial language slipped into legislation authored by Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas) that would restrict victims of human trafficking and sexual exploitation from being able to access needed health services. T… Continue Reading


03.11.15

Leahy: AG Nominee Loretta Lynch: A Proven Record Combatting Human Trafficking

(Wednesday, March 11, 2015) - As United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, Loretta Lynch has built a strong record prosecuting human traffickers and protecting children. Senators who support legislation to prosecute human traffickers and protect victims should also support Lynch's nomination to be the next Attorney General, Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) said Wednesday. Lynch's record "is so well established that even prominent Fox News hosts have pr… Continue Reading


03.11.15

[BREAKING] News Backgrounder On The ‘Leahy Law’ And Leahy REAX On ABC News Report On Atrocities By Iraqi Militias –

NEWS BACKGROUNDER ON THE LEAHY LAW Also Below Is Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The ABC News Investigative Report On Atrocities By Iraqi Militias, And The Application Of The "Leahy Law" [BACKGROUND: The Leahy Law - first enacted in 1997 and amended and expanded several times since then -- applies to units of foreign security forces (not to the entire security force of a country receiving U.S. military training or aid). Senator Leahy and the Administration have interpreted that to mean … Continue Reading


03.11.15

Comment Of Senator Leahy, Senator Sanders And Congressman Welch: 13 Vermont Communities Awarded $4.3 Million In Federal Community Development Grants

[Vermont's congressional delegation - Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) - Wednesday issued the following joint statement on $4.3 million in federal development grants to Vermont communities, announced by Gov. Peter Shumlin (D-Vt.). The grants are being awarded to 13 Vermont cities and towns under the federal Community Development Block Grant Program of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The funding will build and improve aff… Continue Reading


03.11.15

Leahy Urges Senators To Support Runaway and Homeless Youth and Trafficking Prevention Act

(Wednesday, March 11, 2015) -The Senate is currently considering legislation to combat human trafficking, but the pending bill does not include prevention methods to stop trafficking in the first place. Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) on Wednesday sought to improve the bill by filing as an amendment their legislation to prevent runaway and homeless youth from falling victim to human trafficking and sexual exploitation. The L… Continue Reading


03.11.15

Windham Southeast Supervisory Union

On March 11, 2015, Senator Leahy held an online chat with the sixth, seventh, and eighth grade classrooms of Putney Central School. Senator Leahy was impressed by the students' questions regarding school nutrition and the organic farming movement. He also enjoyed answering their questions on climate change and ways in which Vermont is leading the nation in renewable energy initiatives.… Continue Reading


03.10.15

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, On the Anti-Trafficking Legislation Being Considered in the Senate

"Senator Cornyn's language restricting needed, legal health care for women was not included in the trafficking package the Judiciary Committee reported last year. I regret that Senator Cornyn put it in his new legislation this year. "Senate Republicans need to decide whether they want to be a majority party that works across the aisle to advance legislation, or if they want to use debates about some of the most vulnerable among us to advance their own political agenda. The children should be ou… Continue Reading


03.10.15

The Runaway and Homeless Youth and Trafficking Prevention Act

(Tuesday, March 10, 2015) - The Senate Tuesday morning began debate on legislation approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee to combat human trafficking and sexual exploitation, a form of modern day slavery that affects thousands of people every day. In a floor statement Tuesday, Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) said any legislation the Senate approves must include key protections for runaway and homeless youth who are among the most vulnerable to human trafficking. "H… Continue Reading


03.09.15

Statement Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Ranking Member, Senate Judiciary Committee, on the Confirmation of Michelle Lee to Serve as Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office and Daniel Marti to Serve as Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator

I welcome the Senate's action today to confirm two well-regarded practitioners to important leadership positions charged with protecting and promoting intellectual property. Michelle Lee, who is nominated to serve as the Director of the Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO), will be the first woman and first Asian Pacific American to hold this position. She is also the daughter of immigrants who moved to this country and contributed to the growth of Silicon Valley through her father's career as… Continue Reading


03.09.15

Days After Selma Anniversary, Leahy Calls On Senate To Restore the Voting Rights Act & Confirm AG Nominee Loretta Lynch

(Monday, March 9, 2015) - Days after a bipartisan group of lawmakers traveled to Selma, Alabama to honor the 50th anniversary of the historic civil rights march that gave way to the Voting Rights Act, Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) took to the floor Monday to urge Congress to restore that landmark law and to confirm Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch. "In commemorating the bravery of these foot soldiers for justice, we are reminded of what we can accomplish … Continue Reading


03.06.15

In Lead-Up to Senate Debate On Anti-Trafficking Legislation, Support Builds For Efforts To Protect Runaway & Homeless Youth From Human Traffickers

(Friday, March 6, 2015) -As the Senate prepares to consider legislation to combat human trafficking as soon as next week, Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is urging lawmakers to support meaningful legislation to prevent vulnerable youth from becoming targets of trafficking and sexual exploitation. The push also comes as bipartisan support is rallying behind the Runaway and Homeless Youth and Trafficking Prevention Act (S. 262), a bill Leahy coauthored with Sena… Continue Reading


03.04.15

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) On The Attack On Mark Lippert, U.S. Ambassador To South Korea; Ambassador Lippert Is A Former Foreign Policy Aide To Senator Leahy

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) On The Attack On Mark Lippert, U.S. Ambassador To South Korea; Ambassador Lippert Is A Former Foreign Policy Aide To Senator Leahy "Marcelle and I are heartsick about news reports about the senseless attack on Mark. Our prayers are with him and with Robyn, Sejun and their families. He is as devoted a public servant as they come, a great credit to both of our countries." # # # # #… Continue Reading


03.04.15

Leahy Again Urges Senate Vote For AG Nominee Loretta Lynch

(Wednesday, March 4, 2015) - Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) took to the floor on Wednesday for a second time this week to call for a confirmation vote for Attorney General nominee Loretta Lynch. Lynch's nomination was reported on a bipartisan vote by the Judiciary Committee last week. Her nomination has been pending longer than those of the five previous Attorneys General. Speaking on the Senate floor Wednesday, Leahy highlighted Lynch's record as the United S… Continue Reading


03.04.15

Leahy, Sanders, Welch Announce $1.5 M In Affordable Housing Grants For Vermont’s Local NeighborWorks Organizations

(WEDNESDAY, March 4, 2015) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Representative Peter Welch (D-Vt.) Wednesday announced $1.5 million in grants to revitalize communities and support access to affordable housing across Vermont. The announcement marks the first round of 2015 federal grants awarded by NeighborWorks America. Leahy said: "Vermont's NeighborWorks affiliates are on the front lines of creating jobs and stabilizing our communities by investing in affordabl… Continue Reading

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