Press Releases


Durbin Announces Illinois to Receive $22 Million for School Improvement

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today announced that the State of Illinois will receive $22,060,358 in funding through the Department of Education's School Improvement Grant program. A total of more than $85 million was awarded to five states that are continuing efforts to turn around their persistently lowest-achieving schools. "We must ensure that each and every child has the opportunity to learn and thrive no matter where they live and no matter what school they att… Continue Reading


Durbin Applauds Senate Passage of Ukraine Aid Bill

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today applauded the Senate's 98 to 2 vote to approve a bill that would send aid to Ukraine and place more sanctions on Russia for its acts of aggression in Crimea. The U.S. House of Representatives passed a similar bill today and the legislation is expected to be sent to the President shortly for his signature. "The United States took a serious step forward today to show the people of Ukraine that we stand with them as they work toward a mo… Continue Reading


Durbin Commends House Members for Joining Effort to Protect Children from E-Cigarettes

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today commended six members of the House of Representatives, including U.S. Representatives Cheri Bustos (D-IL) and Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), for introducing the Protecting Children from Electronic Cigarette Advertising Act to prohibit the marketing of e-cigarettes to children and teens. Durbin joined U.S. Senators Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), and Edward J. Markey (D-MA) introducing a companion measure in th… Continue Reading


Durbin Statement Following Senate Hearing on Student Loans

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today submitted a statement for a hearing of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions on the federal student loan program and the growing student loan debt crisis which has, for the first time in history, surpassed the total amount of credit card debt in America. According to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, this growing pile of debt threatens current and future economic growth. Before 2009, young people with stude… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk Ask for Meeting with BP Following Oil Spill in Lake Michigan

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) today asked for a meeting with BP after oil from BP's Whiting refinery in Indiana spilled into Lake Michigan earlier this week. Specifically, the Illinois members asked for a report about the cause of the spill, an analysis of the impact of the Whiting Refinery's production increase on Lake Michigan and information on what is being done to prevent future spills. "Any unanticipated spill is cause for concern, but give… Continue Reading


Durbin to Introduce Legislation to Coordinate Oversight of For-Profit Colleges

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In a speech on the floor of the Senate today, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced that, next week, he will be joining with U.S. Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, to introduce legislation that will ensure that federal agencies are working together to oversee the for-profit college industry. According to Durbin, for-profit colleges are part of the problem when it comes to the growing student loan de… Continue Reading


Durbin and Silicon Valley Leaders Meet to Discuss Support for American Innovation & Discovery

[WASHINGTON, DC] Today, Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin met with members of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, including Mountain View, California Mayor Chris Clark, to discuss efforts to maintain America's global leadership and economic competitiveness through scientific research. Earlier this month, Durbin introduced the American Cures Act, which would support the future of scientific research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Depart… Continue Reading


Durbin, Kirk Statement on BP Whiting Refinery Oil Spill into Lake Michigan

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) today released the following statement after learning that an unknown amount of oil from BP's Whiting refinery in Indiana spilled into Lake Michigan. Earlier today, Durbin spoke with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy and EPA Region 5 Administrator Susan Hedman about the spill. "We cannot be too careful when it comes to protecting the health and safety of Lake Michigan which … Continue Reading


Senators: FDA Must Regulate E-Cigarettes and Other Nicotine Delivery Products

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - In light of mounting evidence that the emerging market of new nicotine delivery products poses serious public health and consumer protection issues, six U.S. Senators today called on the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to move quickly to regulate the rapidly evolving market of e-cigarettes and other nicotine products saying: "It's time for the FDA to stop the sale of these candy-flavored poisons to our children." U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Tom Harkin (D-IA), Ba… Continue Reading


Gen. Mark Welsh Visits Scott Air Force Base

[SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE] - U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh today visited Scott Air Force Base with members of Illinois' Congressional Delegation to discuss Scott's importance to our nation's military and meet with leaders of the surrounding community to hear about the strong local support for the base. Gen. Welsh agreed to visit Scott at the invitation of U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), who chairs the Senate appropriations subcommittee that oversees discretionary spending for our n… Continue Reading


Bipartisan Group of Senators Call for International Monitors in Ukraine

Washington, D.C. - A bipartisan group of Senators, led by Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL), today sent a letter to the Secretary General of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, urging the international body to immediately deploy civilian monitors to eastern and southern Ukraine as the situation on the ground continues to deteriorate. Senators John McCain (R-AZ), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Ron Johnson (R-WI), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), John Barrasso (R-WY), Jeff Flake (R… Continue Reading


Durbin, Foster Applaud Opening of Argonne Energy Sciences Building

[ARGONNE] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and U.S. Representative Bill Foster (D-IL-11) today attended the dedication ceremony for Argonne National Laboratory's new Energy Sciences Building. Construction on the $95 million building was funded through the U.S. Department of Energy's Science Laboratories Infrastructure Program. The facility is a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold building. "With its caliber of work, quality of people and boldness of mission, Argonne … Continue Reading


Durbin to CIA: Respect Separation of Powers and Declassify Torture Report

Washington, D.C. - In a strongly worded letter to CIA Director John Brennan, Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today called on the CIA to support declassifying a report on its controversial detention and interrogation program. Durbin's letter follows the highly questionable and possibly unconstitutional search of Senate Select Committee on Intelligence computers by the CIA which was revealed this week. "I write to express my grave concerns about the CIA's actions with respect to t… Continue Reading


Durbin, Quinn, Emanuel Announce More Than $128 Million in HUD Disaster Recovery Funding for Chicago Area

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel today announced that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Affairs (HUD) has awarded a total of $128,300,000 in funding through the Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery Program to communities in the Chicago area for recovery efforts following severe storms and flooding that began on April 18, 2013. This funding was made available through the FY2013 Sandy Supplementa… Continue Reading


Durbin Travels to Ukraine

[Washington, D.C.] - Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) is on two-day trip to Ukraine where he will hold high-level meetings on regional political dynamics and security issues. The delegation, led by Senator Durbin and Senator John McCain (R-AZ), will also include Senators Murphy (D-CT), Flake (R-AZ), Whitehouse (D-RI), Barrasso (R-WY), Hoeven (R-ND) and Johnson (R-WI). Durbin will travel to Kiev, for meetings with the interim Ukrainian government, including Acting President Turchyn… Continue Reading


Senate Confirms Chicagoan Bruce Heyman As New U.S. Ambassador to Canada

[WASHINGTON, D.C.] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) released the following statements today after the Senate confirmed Bruce Heyman of Chicago, Illinois to be the next U.S. Ambassador to Canada. The Senate unanimously approved his nomination. "I was proud to support Bruce Heyman's confirmation to be the next U.S. Ambassador to Canada, and I am pleased that my colleagues in the Senate unanimously agree." "Bruce's broad experience in international business and global affairs will prepare h… Continue Reading


Durbin Meets With Springfield and Sangamon County Officials to Discuss Regional Priorities

[WASHINGTON, DC] - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today met with members of the Springfield and Sangamon County Community Partnership to discuss local priorities including economic development and transportation improvements. A photo of today's meeting is available here. "I want to thank the Springfield and Sangamon County Community Partnership for their work to improve the community around them and spur local job creation," Durbin said. "I will continue to look for opportunities in Washingt… Continue Reading


Durbin Introduces the American Cures Act

[WASHINGTON, DC] With a decline in federal biomedical research threatening our standing as a leader in discovery and innovation and our global competitiveness, Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today introduced the American Cures Act, to support the future of research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Department of Defense Health Program (DHP), and the Veterans Medical & Prosthetics Research Program. "In the last two centuri… Continue Reading


Durbin Introduces The America Cures Act

[WASHINGTON, DC] With a decline in federal biomedical research threatening our standing as a leader in discovery and innovation and our global competitiveness, Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-IL) today introduced the American Cures Act, to support the future of research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Department of Defense Health Program (DHP), and the Veterans Medical & Prosthetics Research Program. "In the last two centuries,… Continue Reading


In Letter to President Obama, Durbin, Five Other Senators, Urge Administration to Finalize Regulations for Tobacco Products

[WASHINGTON, DC] - In a letter to President Obama, U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) - joined by U.S. Senators Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), and Ed Markey (D-Mass.) - urged the Administration to review and finalize regulations for tobacco products, which may include e-cigarettes and e-hookahs, without further delay. By Executive Order, the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs has 90 days to complete review of regu… Continue Reading

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