Press Releases

02.09.15

Durbin, Portman Launch Senate Ukraine Caucus

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Rob Portman (R-OH) announced the launch of the Senate Ukraine Caucus. The goal of the Caucus will be to strengthen the political, military, economic, and cultural relationship between the United States and Ukraine. The caucus will immediately focus on the need for a sustained U.S. commitment to Ukraine in the face of a Russian-backed separatist offensive. Durbin and Portman recently led a bipartisan group of 15 senators calling for the Uni… Continue Reading


02.06.15

Durbin Meets With Amtrak President And Board Chairman To Discuss Passenger Rail's Continued Growth

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - With Congress preparing to consider a legislation to reauthorize Amtrak, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) met yesterday with Amtrak President Joe Boardman and Chairman of the Board Anthony Coscia to discuss the continued growth of passenger rail service, and the importance of robust federal support for our national transportation network. A photo of today's meeting will be available here. "This year, Congress faces a deadline on the future of our national transportation and … Continue Reading


02.05.15

Durbin, Cummings Introduce Legislation To Put Coordinated Federal Oversight Of For-Profit College Industry Into Law

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Senate Democratic Leader, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Elijah Cummings (D-MD), the Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform today introduced legislation that would put into law an interagency committee that is tasked with improving coordination in federal and state oversight of the for-profit college industry. In October, the Department of Education announced it would create an interagency oversight com… Continue Reading


02.05.15

Durbin Discusses Illinois Law Enforcement Issues With ATF Special Agent In Charge In Chicago Carl Vasilko

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) met with Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Special Agent In Charge of the Chicago Field Division Carl Vasilko today to discuss crime gun tracing and the ongoing law enforcement efforts of the ATF Crime Gun Intelligence Center in Chicago. A photo of today's meeting is available HERE. "Solving violent gun crimes and targeting gun trafficking networks are among our highest law enforcement priorities. Today, I urged Special … Continue Reading


02.03.15

Durbin Statement On FutureGen Announcement

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the following statement after learning that the Department of Energy has been forced to cancel federal funding for the FutureGen project due to the FutureGen Alliance's failure to find agreement with the private partners before the expiration of the $1 billion in funding that was secured for the public-private partnership as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. "The Secretary of Energy informed me that because th… Continue Reading


02.03.15

Durbin, Portman Lead Bipartisan Senators Calling For Increased Military Assistance To Ukraine

[WASHINGTON] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Rob Portman (R-OH), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), John Barrasso (R-WY), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), John McCain (R-AZ), Bill Nelson (D-FL), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Joe Donnelly (D-IN), and Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) today urged President Obama and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to rapidly increase military assistance to Ukraine to defend its sovereign… Continue Reading


02.03.15

Senate Passes Bill To Improve Mental Health Care & Suicide Prevention Resources For Veterans

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that the Senate has passed the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans (SAV) Act by a vote of 99 to 0. The bill improves and modernizes suicide prevention programs for veterans by increasing access to mental health care, improving the quality of care at Veterans Affairs (VA) facilities, and developing a community support system for veterans. The bill was introduced by Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Richard Blumentha… Continue Reading


02.03.15

Durbin: Will America Be A Stronger Country If We Deport Young Immigrants Attending Medical School To Countries They Barely Know?

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - With three weeks until the short-term funding bill for the Department of Homeland Security expires, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) came to the Senate Floor today to urge Senate Republicans to abandon efforts to play politics with the lives of young people impacted by immigration policies like Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) - including the medical students and DACA recipients who attend Chicago Loyola University of Chicago's Stritch School of Medicine. This… Continue Reading


02.03.15

Durbin: Obama Budget Maintains Funding For Discovery & Innovation At Illinois National Labs

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said the budget that President Obama delivered to Congress preserves essential federal funding for scientific research and development programs that support work at both Argonne National Laboratory and Fermilab. The President's budget request includes $5.3 billion for the Department of Energy's Office of Science, which is the primary funding source for both Argonne National Laboratory and Fermilab. Together, Argonne and Fermilab employ roughly… Continue Reading


02.02.15

Durbin Applauds Commitment To Infrastructure Investments In Presidential Budget

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said the budget that President Obama delivered to Congress today will spur job creation and help strengthen the middle class by making critical investments in our national transportation and infrastructure network. "The President's budget stresses the importance of infrastructure in supporting our nation's long-term economic well-being. This is a message important to Illinois, where federal support for our airports, highways, waterways, an… Continue Reading


02.02.15

Durbin Statement On President's Budget

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today made the following statement after reviewing President Obama's FY2016 Budget proposal. "A strong middle class is the best foundation for a strong economy and President Obama's budget proposal makes clear that investing in the middle class is his top priority. Middle class families are squeezed as wages have not kept up with the rising cost of food, housing and other necessities. Meanwhile, corporations and the wealthy avoid paying … Continue Reading


02.02.15

Durbin, Delauro: Obama Budget Takes Step Toward Single Food Safety Agency

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) today released the following statement after learning that President Obama's 2016 Budget includes a proposal to consolidate food safety functions in an effort to begin reforming the federal food safety system. "President Obama's 2016 Budget proposal takes an historic step toward improving the safety and security of our nation's food system," said Durbin. "The Budget recommends the consolidation of f… Continue Reading


02.02.15

Durbin: Obama Budget Proposal Would Finally Close For-Profit College Loophole, Save Taxpayers Billions

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) applauded the inclusion of a provision in President Obama's 2016 Budget that would eliminate a loophole that allows for-profit colleges to receive more than 90% of their revenue from the federal government. This change would help put an end to the for-profit industry's predatory marketing campaigns and aggressive recruiting of veterans, servicemembers and their families. FACT: Forty-four percent of all student loan defaults come from for-pr… Continue Reading


01.30.15

Durbin Introduces New Legislation To End Travel Restrictions To Cuba

[CHICAGO] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today discussed legislation he introduced yesterday with Senators Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Jerry Moran (R-KS), Tom Udall (D-NM), John Boozman (R-AR), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), and Mike Enzi (R-WY) to lift the embargo on travel between the United States and Cuba. The bipartisan Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act of 2015 is the first Senate legislation introduced since the Obama Administration announced it wanted to normalize relations with C… Continue Reading


01.30.15

Durbin, Murray, Sanders, Senators Urge President Obama To Help Workers Get Paid Fairly For Overtime Hours

Democrats continue focus on increasing wages, economic security [WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Today, U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Patty Murray (D-WA), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), and 26 Democratic senators reaffirmed their support for updating overtime rules to ensure more middle-class workers are paid fairly for overtime hours. In a letter to President Barack Obama, Durbin, Murray, Sanders, Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Al Franken (D-MN), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Bob Casey (D-PA), … Continue Reading


01.29.15

Durbin, Cardin, Mccain Reintroduce Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Ben Cardin (D-MD) and John McCain (R-AZ), have introduced theGlobal Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act that would ensure human rights abusers and corrupt officials are denied entry into the United States and barred from using our financial institutions. The legislation would expand the Russia-specific sanctions in the Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act (Public Law 112-208) to apply globally, and would make significant acts… Continue Reading


01.29.15

Durbin, Hirono, Senate & House Democrats, Champion Initiative To Expand Access To Early Education

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mazie K. Hirono (D-HI) introduced the Providing Resources Early for Kids (PRE-K) Act, legislation to expand access to high-quality early learning programs for children from birth to age five. The PRE-K Act helps more kids arrive at kindergarten ready to succeed by establishing a federal-state partnerships that incentivizes states to both improve the quality of state preschool programs and expand to serve more children in need. "The ear… Continue Reading


01.29.15

Video: Bipartisan Senators Introduce Freedom To Travel To Cuba Act

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Jerry Moran (R-KS),Tom Udall (D-NM), John Boozman (R-AR), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), and Mike Enzi (R-WY) today introduced theFreedom to Travel to Cuba Act of 2015. The bill will end restrictions in laws enacted in 1996 and 2000 on travel by American citizens and legal residents to Cuba-restrictions that do not exist for travel by Americans to any other country in the world. The bill will also end res… Continue Reading


01.28.15

Bipartisan Senators To Announce Legislation On Cuban Embargo

[WASHINGTON, D.C.]-On Thursday, U.S. Senators Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Jerry Moran (R-KS), Tom Udall (D-NM), and John Boozman (R-AR) will announce new legislation on U.S.-Cuban policy. This will be the first legislative announcement in the Senate since the Obama Administration announced its changes of policy on December 17th, 2014. WHAT: Announcement of new legislation on U.S.-Cuban policy WHEN: Thursday, January 29th 2015 at 11:45am … Continue Reading


01.28.15

50 Years After Landmark Legislation, Durbin Calls Attention To Voting Rights During Nomination Hearing For New Attorney General

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and top Democrat on the Constitution Subcommittee, today raised concerns regarding voting rights and criminal justice reform with Loretta Lynch, who is nominated to be Attorney General of the United States, during the first day of the Senate Judiciary Committee's hearings on her nomination. Lynch currently serves as the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, a position she has held since… Continue Reading

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