Press Releases


Durbin to Graham: No Justification to Delay Judge Garland's Confirmation Hearing

SPRINGFIELD - Today, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), incoming Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, sent a letter to current Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC), urging the prompt scheduling of Judge Merrick Garland's confirmation hearing to be considered as the next U.S. Attorney General. In his letter, Durbin pointed out the urgent need to confirm the nation's top law enforcement officer to protect our national security, and asked Graham to proceed with a February 8th hearin… Continue Reading


Durbin Discusses Defense Priorities with General Lloyd Austin, Secretary of Defense

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with General Lloyd Austin, President Joe Biden's Secretary of Defense. During their Zoom call, Durbin and Austin discussed the importance of addressing sexual assault, extremism, and wasteful spending in the military. "Secretary Austin is a tested leader who is ready to address the many challenges we face at home and abroad. I believe he will work hard to address serious problems of sexual assault, extremism, and discrimination within the m… Continue Reading


Durbin Announces Nominees for Service Academies

SPRINGFIELD - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today released the names of young men and women whom he has nominated to attend four of the nation's service academies. "Every year I am honored to nominate some of Illinois' best and brightest young men and women for our nation's service academies," Durbin said. "These students have demonstrated strong leadership and a commitment to serve. I have no doubt that they will make their families and their country proud." The academies include U.S. Air F… Continue Reading


Durbin Calls on Congress to Support President Biden's American Rescue Plan

WASHINGTON - In a speech on the Senate floor, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called on the Senate to support President Joe Biden's American Rescue Plan, which would deliver economic relief to American families and small businesses amid the COVID-19 pandemic. President Biden's American Rescue Plan is a historic legislative package designed to change the course of the pandemic, get students back to school, give families and businesses a bridge to an economic recovery, and in… Continue Reading


Durbin, Duckworth, Senate Democrats Reintroduce D.C. Statehood Legislation

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) joined Senator Tom Carper (D-DE) and a group of Democratic Senators to reintroduce legislation to grant Washington, D.C. statehood. The bill, which was first introduced in 2013, would make Washington, D.C. the 51st state, finally give its citizens full representation in Congress, and also ensure that the citizens and elected leaders of the District of Columbia have full authority over local affairs, including crucial safety… Continue Reading


Durbin, Booker Announce Legislation to Eliminate Federal Crack and Powder Cocaine Sentencing Disparity

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), incoming Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee,announced legislation that will finally eliminate the federal crack and powder cocaine sentencing disparity and apply it retroactively to those already convicted or sentenced. After the passage of the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1986, sentencing for crack and powder cocaine offenses vastly differed. For instance, until 2010, some… Continue Reading


Durbin Discusses Importance of Passenger Rail With New Surface Transportation Board Chair Marty Oberman

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with Marty Oberman, President Joe Biden's new Chair of the Surface Transportation Board (STB). During their Zoom call, Durbin and Oberman discussed the importance of improving Amtrak On-Time Performance (OTP) and enforcing the new Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) OTP rule that sets a new metric for measuring Amtrak delays caused by freight rail interference. "Marty Oberman is a friend and I'm glad President Biden has chosen him to ch… Continue Reading


Durbin Discusses Justice Department Priorities with Lisa Monaco and Vanita Gupta, Biden Nominees for Deputy and Associate Attorneys General

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), incoming Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, met with Lisa Monaco and Vanita Gupta, President Joe Biden's nominees for Deputy and Associate Attorneys General. During their Zoom calls, Durbin, Monaco, and Gupta discussed the importance of working closely together on Department of Justice (DOJ) priorities, including reinvigorating DOJ's protection of Americans' civil rights and voting rights, criminal justice reform and implementing the First Step… Continue Reading


Durbin Discusses COVID-19 Relief with Isabel Guzman, Biden Nominee for Administrator of Small Business Administration

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with Isabel Guzman, President Joe Biden's nominee for Administrator of the Small Business Administration (SBA). During their Zoom call, Durbin and Guzman discussed the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, and how the SBA can help small businesses stay afloat. They also spoke about the disproportionate impact minority-owned small businesses have faced during the pandemic and the importance of ensuring an equitable recovery. "Restaurant… Continue Reading


Durbin, Colleagues Reintroduce Legislation to Help Developing Nations With Access to COVID-19 Vaccine and the Pandemic Economic Fallout

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), along with Senators Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Jack Reed (D-RI), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), and Patrick Leahy (D-VT), today introduced the Support for Global Financial Institution Pandemic Response Act. The legislation directs representatives from the United States to multilateral development banks, such as the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF), to help developing countries as they fight COVID-19, ensuring fina… Continue Reading


GAO Report Requested by Durbin, Members Highlights Need for Better Oversight of For-Profit Colleges

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Patty Murray (D-WA), and U.S. Representative Bobby Scott (D-VA-03) announced today the release of a Government Accountability Office report that they requested into for-profit college conversions - the process used by some for-profit colleges to become nonprofit, changing both their tax filing status and level of higher education accountability requirements applied to the institution. You can read the report here. The report… Continue Reading


Durbin: Senate Has a Responsibility to Move Forward with the Second Impeachment Trial for Donald Trump

WASHINGTON - In a speech on the Senate floor, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), incoming Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today spoke about the Senate's responsibility to move forward with the second impeachment trial for former President Donald Trump after last night's point of order questioning the constitutionality of the trial was defeated by a bipartisan vote. "Last night, there was a vote as to whether we should go forward with the impeachment. All of the Democrats,… Continue Reading


Durbin Recognizes Holocaust Remembrance Day on the Senate Floor

Durbin shared the story of a retired dentist & grandfather in the Chicago area, George Brent, who was 15 years old, living in Hungary with his parents & his little brother when the Nazis invaded Hungary Durbin vows to work with the Biden Administration to pass the Domestic Terrorism Prevention Act and address the significant threat of white supremacist violence WASHINGTON - On International Holocaust Remembrance Day, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), incoming Chair of th… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement on President Biden's Executive Orders on Racial Equity and Prison Reform

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), incoming Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today released the following statement after President Joe Biden issued memoranda on racial equity and an executive order that will partially eliminate federal use of private prisons: "Today's actions by President Biden reaffirm the federal government's role in combatting systemic racial disparities and discrimination, including the reform of incarceration policies that have disproportionately harme… Continue Reading


Durbin Calls on Senate to Quickly Confirm Ali Mayorkas, Biden Nominee to Lead Department of Homeland Security

WASHINGTON - In a speech on the Senate floor, U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), incoming Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today called on the Senate to quickly confirm President Joe Biden's nominee to lead the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Ali Mayorkas. Unfortunately, Republicans are holding up Mr. Mayorkas' confirmation. During his speech, Durbin noted that under President Trump, the agency experienced an unprecedented leadership vacuum. DHS lurched from o… Continue Reading


Durbin, Rubio Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Expand Health Care Workforce to Meet Nationwide Challenges Highlighted by COVID-19

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) today introduced bipartisan legislation to provide a historic investment in the National Health Service Corps (NHSC), Nurse Corps, and National Disaster Medical System (NDMS) programs to bolster health emergency surge capacity and restore the pipeline of physicians, nurses, and other health professionals to address health workforce shortages throughout our country. The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed health workforce shortfalls… Continue Reading


Durbin to Judiciary Committee Republicans: Holding Second Hearing for DHS Nominee Mayorkas Would Create Needless Delay, Break Precedent

WASHINGTON - Following a letter from Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee requesting a hearing in the Committee for Alejandro Mayorkas's nomination to be Secretary of Homeland Security, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), incoming Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, today sent a response rejecting their request. In his letter, Durbin wrote that a second hearing, following the hearing that has already taken place in the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, woul… Continue Reading


Durbin, Senators to E-Commerce Companies: Reduce Plastic Use in Your Packaging to Protect Environment

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), and Ron Wyden (D-OR) today sent a letter to Amazon, Walmart, Apple, Home Depot, Target, Wayfair, Best Buy, and Costco - the largest e-commerce companies in America - urging them to reduce the amount of plastic used in their packaging. Last month, Oceana published a report that Amazon was responsible for 465 million pounds of plastic packaging waste last year. … Continue Reading


Durbin Discusses COVID-19, Trade, and Census with Gina Raimondo, Biden Nominee for Secretary of Commerce

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with Governor Gina Raimondo (D-RI), President Joe Biden's nominee for Secretary of Commerce. During their Zoom call, Durbin and Raimondo discussed the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, trade policies that level the playing field for American workers and manufacturers, and ensuring an apolitical count of the 2020 Census. Durbin also spoke about his push for five percent real growth in science agencies for innovation-including program… Continue Reading


Durbin, Sanders, Garcia, Colleagues Call on Treasury to Support IMF Assistance for Developing Nations Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), along with Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), U.S. Representative Jesús "Chuy" García (D-IL-04), and ten of their Senate colleagues sent a letter to Treasury Secretary-designate Janet Yellen regarding the urgent importance of helping stem the devastating economic impact of the COVID pandemic on the world's developing countries and America's trading partners. The members also urged the Biden Administration to support the Supp… Continue Reading

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