Press Releases

05.19.14

Durbin Calls For Authorizing Dreamers To Enlist In Armed Forces

[CHICAGO] - As Chairman of the Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, which oversees funding for the military and intelligence community, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today chaired a subcommittee hearing in Chicago during which he urged that young immigrants who qualify for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) be authorized to enlist in the military. Text of his opening statement is attached. It has been almost a year since the Senate passed comprehensive immigration legisl… Continue Reading


05.15.14

Durbin, Harkin, Murphy, Schatz, Warren, and Carper Call on Education Department To Strengthen Protections For Students At Career Education Programs

[WASHINGTON, D.C.]-U.S. Senators Tom Harkin (D-IA), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Brian Schatz (D-HI), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), and Tom Carper (D-DE) today sent a letter to U.S. Department of Education (ED) urging them to put in place stronger protections for students in career education programs-particularly those at for-profit colleges-who often take on significant debt and are frequently left with meager job prospects. Video of Durbin's statement is available HERE. The Higher E… Continue Reading


05.15.14

Durbin: WRRDA Conference Report Invests In Illinois Waterways Infrastructure Priorities

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today said that the Conference Report of the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014 invests in Illinois priorities and will make Illinois, the Midwest, and the country better prepared for extreme weather events like droughts and floods. Text of the Conference Report was released earlier today by members of the bipartisan, bicameral House Senate Conference Committee tasked with working out the differences between the Senate-passed W… Continue Reading


05.15.14

Bipartisan Illinois Congressional Delegation Announces Funding For Metro East Levee Project, Flood Prevention Efforts In Water Resources Reform and Development Act

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL and Mark Kirk (R-IL) and U.S Representatives Bill Enyart (D-IL), Rodney Davis (R-IL), and John Shimkus (R-IL) announced that the Conference Report of the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014 - released earlier today - includes provisions to continue and help streamline the Metro East region's effort to repair and recertify the levees that protect residents in southwest Illinois from flooding and storm damage. "Communities alo… Continue Reading


05.15.14

Durbin: Student Loan Debt is Out of Control

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Hardworking students deserve the right at an affordable education and protections that help them pay back their students loans, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today during a press conference with Senate Democratic Leadership. Durbin spoke about his recent visit to Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois, where he talked with students about the problems they are encountering as they struggle to pay back their loans. 1.7 million Illinoisans currently have outstanding … Continue Reading


05.15.14

Durbin Honors Former Normal, Illinois Mayor Carol Reitan

WASHINGTON, DC] - In a statement for the Senate record, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today honored Carol Reitan, who served as the Mayor of Normal, Illinois, from 1972 to 1976 and who passed away this week at the age of 83. Reitan was Normal's first and only female mayor, and was viewed as a remarkable leader who had a broad, positive impact on her community. Throughout her career in public service, Reitan's work earned her many awards, including the Normal Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the … Continue Reading


05.15.14

Durbin, Kirk, Bustos, David: Bipartisan Bill To Improve Illinois Locks & Dams Included in Water Resources Reform and Development Act

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) and U.S. Representatives Cheri Bustos (D-IL) and Rodney Davis (R-IL) announced that key provisions of their bipartisan and bicameral legislation to help speed up repairs and upgrades to the aging locks and dams on the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers were included in the Conference Report of the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014. The legislation seeks to improve the nation's water infrastructure through pu… Continue Reading


05.15.14

Durbin: U Of I Willard Airport To Recieve $1.6 Million Federal Grant

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that the Department of Transportation (DOT) has awarded a $1,641,000 grant to University of Illinois-Willard Airport in Savoy, Illinois for infrastructure improvements and upgrades. The funding will be used to widen the airport's taxiway and to install markings on the runway to prevent incursions. "Willard Airport is a critical transportation link for students, families, and businesses in Central Illinois," said Durbin. "This… Continue Reading


05.14.14

Durbin Calls on Student Loan Servicers To Help U.S. Military Members & Veterans With Student Loan Debt

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Today, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), author of the Student Loan Borrower Bill of Rights Act, called on student loan servicers across the country to take action to help ensure that members of our armed forces and veterans have access to the benefits that they have earned and the protections to which they are entitled. Durbin urged the servicers to voluntarily implement a provision of his Student Loan Borrower Bill of Rights Act that would require all federal and private stud… Continue Reading


05.14.14

Durbin: 1.7 Million Illinoisans Have Outstanding Student Loan Debt

DURBIN: 1.7 MILLION ILLINOISANS HAVE OUTSTANDING STUDENT LOAN DEBT [WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) spoke on the Senate Floor today to discuss America's exploding student loan debt crisis and efforts that are underway to help working families better manage their student loan debt and ensure basic protections for new students. "Why are we talking about student loans? Ask working families and ask their kids why we are walking about it. There is more student loan debt in … Continue Reading


05.14.14

Durbin, Heitkamp Call For Federal Policies That Support Biodiesel Jobs & Production s

WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Al Franken (D-MN), and Joe Donnelly (D-IN) today called for the Administration and Congress to support policies that stand up for biodiesel jobs and production. Joined by biodiesel producers from North Dakota, Washington, and New Hampshire, the Senators reinforced the potential detrimental impacts of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) proposed rule to reduce th… Continue Reading


05.14.14

Durbin, Senators Push CFPB To Crack Down On Predatory Payday Loans

[WASHINGTON] - In a letter sent to the Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) today, Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Tom Udall (D-NM), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) pushed the bureau to take new action to protect consumers from predatory storefront and online payday loans. The letter arrives as the CFPB prepares rules for the small dollar lending market. Each day, a large number of hardworking families fall pr… Continue Reading


05.13.14

Durbin Recognizes 150th Anniversary Of The Village of Ramsey, Illinois

[WASHINGTON, DC] - In a statement for the Senate record, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today recognized the 150th anniversary of the Village of Ramsey, Illinois, which was incorporated on May 4, 1864. The Village of Ramsey was in Durbin's 20th congressional district during his time as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1983 to 1997. "To put the anniversary of Ramsey's incorporation in perspective, think about what the Midwest was like in 1864. The Civil War was coming to a… Continue Reading


05.13.14

Durbin to EPA: Mahomet Aquifer Is A Unique, Precious Resource And Should Be Protected

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In comments filed today with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said that special care must be taken to protect the Mahomet Aquifer, and urged the agency to designate it as a sole source of drinking water for the residents of central Illinois. The EPA is currently seeking public comment on a proposal to designate the Mahomet Aquifer System as a sole source aquifer, and will be holding public hearings on the proposal today and tomorrow.… Continue Reading


05.12.14

Durbin Discusses Legislation Allowing Student Loan Holders to Lower Their Interest Rates

[CHICAGO] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today discussed legislation introduced in the Senate last week which will allow those with outstanding student loan debt to refinance at the lower interest rates currently offered to new borrowers. "Student debt has reached the breaking point in this country," Durbin said. "Millions of borrowers are looking at a lifetime of debt just because they wanted to do the right thing and get a college degree. The bill which I co-sponsored last week will h… Continue Reading


05.07.14

Durbin Asks Committee To Help Stabilize Highway Trust Fund, Protect Illinois Priorities In Next Surface Transportation Bill

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin today asked the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW) to stabilize the Highway Trust Fund in its bill to reauthorize the Surface Transportation Act. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx wrote the Illinois Department of Transportation and State Departments of Transportation across the country today to provide an update on the status of the fund, which is likely to dip below the critical $4 billion funding level this summer. To… Continue Reading


05.07.14

Durbin Meets With CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) met with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Thomas Frieden for an update on the first confirmed case of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) in the United States, being treated in Indiana. Durbin discussed how his bill, the American Cures Act, which would provide robust funding for the agency's work in biomedical research, which includes the development of vaccines to fight viruses like MERS. Durbin also talked about the … Continue Reading


05.07.14

On Senate Floor, Durbin Calls For House Passage of Marketplace Fairness Act

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) joined his colleagues U.S. Senators Mike Enzi (R-WY), Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) in calling on the House of Representatives to act on the bipartisan, bicameral Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013 which passed the Senate one year ago. Video of Senator Durbin's remarks can be accessed HERE. The Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013 would give states the option to require both brick and mortar and online retailers to collect tax… Continue Reading


05.07.14

Durbin Announces Early Career Funding For Young Illinois Research Scientists

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that five young Illinois scientists - from Fermi National Laboratory, Argonne National Laboratory and Northwestern University - were awarded significant funding for research as part of the Department of Energy's (DOE) Early Career Research Program. The scientists were recognized by the DOE for their exceptional work in advanced scientific computing research, high energy physics, and basic energy sciences. The grants will provide … Continue Reading


05.06.14

Senate Passes Bipartisan Resolution Condemning Abduction Of Nigerian School Girls

[WASHINGTON, DC] Today, a bipartisan group of U.S. Senators hailed the Senate passage of a resolution condemning the abduction of more than 200 Nigerian school girls by the terrorist group Boko Haram on April 14. Most of the abducted girls - the majority of them between 16 and 18 years old - remain missing. The resolution calling for the safe, immediate return of the girls was introduced by U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Mary Landrieu (D-LA), Jim Inhofe (R-OK), Chris Coo… Continue Reading

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