Press Releases

05.02.13

Durbin Statement on President Obama's Nomination of Penny Pritzker as Commerce Secretary

[CHICAGO, IL] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statement today after President Obama nominated Penny Pritzker as his next Commerce Secretary: "In the world of business Penny Pritzker has broken through the glass ceiling with her extraordinary intelligence and business acumen. I believe Penny will bring a new perspective to a Department that is charged with leading America forward in business growth and job creation. I look forward to supporting her nomination and work… Continue Reading


05.01.13

Durbin, Enyart to Students and Parents: Beware Dramatic Differences Between Student Loan Options

[GRANITE CITY, IL.] - College-bound high school seniors who must decide today which school they will attend in the fall should take care to exhaust every federal financial aid option available to them before turning to private student loans, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said today while meeting with students and their parents at Granite City High School. Noting that two-thirds of student loan borrowers were not aware of the difference between federal students loans and risky, higher-interest… Continue Reading


05.01.13

Durbin Announces a More Than $322,000 Investment in Illinois First-Responder Capabilities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced today that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has awarded $322,233 in grants to fire departments and municipalities throughout Illinois. Today's funding will help support and improve the capability of the department to respond to fires and other types of emergencies. "Our nation's firefighters are called upon day after day to protect America's citizens," Durbin said. "As … Continue Reading


05.01.13

Durbin and Schneider Announce a More Than $54,000 Investment in Zion First-Responder Capabilities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Brad Schneider (D-IL) announced today that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has made a $54,450 investment in the Zion Fire and Rescue Department in Zion, Illinois for fire prevention and safety. Today's funding will help support and improve the capability of the department to respond to fires and other types of emergencies. Last month, Durbin and Schneider ann… Continue Reading


05.01.13

Durbin and Bustos Announce a More Than $23,000 Investment in Peoria First-Responder Capabilities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Cheri Bustos (D-IL) announced today that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has made a $23,600 investment in the Peoria Fire Department in Peoria, Illinois for fire prevention and safety. Today's funding will help support and improve the capability of the department to respond to fires and other types of emergencies. "Our nation's firefighters are called upo… Continue Reading


05.01.13

Durbin and Kelly Announce a More Than $123,000 Investment in Lansing First-Responder Capabilities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Robin Kelly (D-IL) announced today that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), has made a $123,287 investment in the Lansing Fire Department in Lansing, Illinois. Today's funding will help support and improve the capability of the department to respond to fires and other types of emergencies. "Our nation's first-responders are called upon day after day to protec… Continue Reading


04.30.13

Durbin: White House Nominates Three to Fill Federal Judicial Vacancies in Central & Southern Districts

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that President Obama will nominate Sara Ellis and Andrea Wood to fill two current vacancies on the U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Illinois. President Obama also announced his intent to nominate Colin Bruce to fill a vacancy on the U.S. District Court in the Central District of Illinois that will open up on June 30th. "All three of the President's nominees are excellent candidates for federal judgeships in … Continue Reading


04.26.13

Senators Durbin, Lautenberg, Harkin, and Blumenthal Introduce Legislation to Stop Tobacco Smuggling, Close Tobacco Tax Loopholes, and Increase Federal Tobacco Taxes

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ), Tom Harkin (D-IA), and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) have introduced the "Tobacco Tax and Enforcement Reform Act," legislation that would reduce illegal tobacco trafficking, eliminate tax disparities between different tobacco products, and increase the federal excise tax rate on tobacco products. The legislation lays out a comprehensive set of reforms that would help the federal government and states collect billions … Continue Reading


04.25.13

Durbin: Stricter Requirements, Harsher Penalties & More Transparency Needed in S.S. Badger Deal

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In comments filed with the Department of Justice, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today said that the consent decree formally lodged by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) last month should specify larger reductions of coal ash discharges - a 40% reduction in 2013 and a 60 % reduction in 2014 - and include stricter penalties if the S.S. Badger does not meet those requirements. Durbin also called for an explicit agreement that no more extensions will be granted to the … Continue Reading


04.16.13

Senators Call on FDA to Restrict the Sale, Distribution, and Marketing of E-Cigarettes

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Calling e-cigarettes a possible pathway to traditional cigarettes and other tobacco products, five U.S. Senators today called on the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to issue "deeming regulations" asserting regulatory authority over tobacco products, such as electronic cigarettes, and to restrict the sale, distribution and marketing of e-cigarettes and other nicotine products to children and young adults. Though the number of U.S. adults who have tried e-cigarettes has do… Continue Reading


04.16.13

Durbin Reflects on Tragedy in Boston on the Senate Floor

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) spoke on the United States Senate Floor today regarding the tragic events that occurred yesterday during the Boston Marathon. "Our nation is saddened by what happened yesterday in Boston," Durbin said. "It is a moment of grave concern across America, expressed well by the President last night. We wait for information and details to build a case for those who are responsible. I don't want to rush to judgment until we have the facts, but the… Continue Reading


04.15.13

Durbin Announces Bipartisan Screening Committee to Consider Applications for Federal Judiciary in the Southern District

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin today announced the formation of a bipartisan screening committee to assist in selecting Federal District Court Judges for the Southern District of Illinois. It has been announced that a judicial vacancy will open up in the Southern District in December, and the immediate task of the screening committee is to review applications and make recommendations to Durbin for filling current and future vacancies. The screening committee will be comprised… Continue Reading


04.12.13

Durbin Meets with Urban Prep Students to Discuss Overcoming Influence of Gangs, Gun Violence

[CHICAGO] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today visited Urban Prep Academy's West campus to meet with students and hear how they overcame difficult circumstances while growing up in some of Chicago's poorest neighborhoods. The students shared stories of how, despite growing up in high-crime communities, they have opted to avoid street violence and instead enroll at Urban Prep, a high-performing network of charter schools in the city. "Guns and gangs can be an enticing draw for young men gr… Continue Reading


04.11.13

Durbin, Boozman, and Coons Introduce Bill to Increase U.S. Exports to Africa

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), John Boozman (R-AR) and Chris Coons (D-DE) introduced legislation today that will help create American jobs by dramatically increasing the number of U.S. exports to Africa. The bill also aims to improve America's competiveness throughout the continent by forcing better coordination between U.S. government agencies and departments, establishing comprehensive strategic goals, and marshaling private investments to improve U.S.-Africa business a… Continue Reading


04.10.13

Durbin, Markey, Blumenthal: Energy Drinks Report Shows Labeling, Marketingf, Ingredients Create Questionable Concoction for Consumers

[WASHINGTON, DC] - Three Democratic lawmakers today released a report entitled, What's all the Buzz about?, that shows inconsistencies in the labeling and classification of energy drinks, extensive marketing to adolescents and young adults through social media and events, and high caffeine levels that exceed the level considered safe in soda by the Food and Drug Administration. The report was compiled using responses from fourteen energy drink companies received by Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA) and Sens… Continue Reading


04.09.13

Senate Democrats Crack Down on Excessive Interest Rates and Fees

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL), along with Senators Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Barbara Boxer (D-CA), introduced the Protecting Consumers from Unreasonable Credit Rates Act today, a bill to eliminate the excessive rates and fees that some consumers are charged for payday loans, car title loans and other types of credit. The bill would create an interest rate and fee cap of 36% for all consumer credit transact… Continue Reading


04.02.13

Durbin Meets with Peoria Law Enforcement Leaders to Discuss "Don't Shoot" Program

[PEORIA, IL] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) met today with local law enforcement leaders and elected officials to hear how the City of Peoria is using the Don't Shoot program to fight violent crime. Peoria's crime rate has fallen in the first three months of 2013 and city law enforcement estimates the number of gun-related emergency calls has dropped fifteen to thirty percent. "Gun violence is plaguing many Illinois communities from Chicago to East St. Louis," Durbin said. "Peoria's lea… Continue Reading


03.29.13

Durbin, Schneider Announce Nearly One Million in Funding for Waukegan Harbor Dredging

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Brad Schneider (IL-10) today announced that the Army Corps of Engineers has awarded $990,000 in funding for dredging in Waukegan Harbor to clean up shoaling caused by Hurricane Sandy and allow the Harbor to reopen to navigation. The funding was awarded as part of the $821 million approved for the Army Corps of Engineers in the supplemental appropriations bill to aid victims of Hurricane Sandy and to rebuild the areas t… Continue Reading


03.28.13

Durbin Announces $1.6 Million in Disaster Relief Funds for Harrisburg

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the U.S. Department of Commerce's (DOC) Economic Development Administration (EDA) has awarded $1,645,200 in Disaster Relief funding to the City of Harrisburg, Illinois which suffered severe damage from flooding in 2011 and further devastation from a major tornado in 2012. Today's investment will be used to construct improvements to the Harrisburg's waste water treatment plant, support local industries and protect agai… Continue Reading


03.27.13

Durbin Meets with Law Enforcement Leaders to Discuss Gun Violence in East St. Louis

[EAST ST. LOUIS] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with state, county and regional law enforcement leaders from the Metro East area to learn about the challenges they face in their jurisdiction related to gun violence and gun trafficking and, in turn, brief them on the gun violence legislation the U.S. Senate is expected to debate next month. "Over the last few months, as Congress has begun to debate legislation to reduce gun violence, I have met with law enforcement leaders across… Continue Reading

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